Ordination to the Priesthood
Family, friends and Friars came together on Saturday 24th March 2018 to witness Michael O"Grady's priestly ordination by Bishop Alan Williams of Brentwood Diocese.
In the bright and airy neo-classical church of St Francis of Assisi, Stratford, East London - which was opened 150 years ago this year in the presence of Cardinal Manning - over 100 people gathered, led in joyful praise by the parish's Nigerian singers and musicians: the Blessed Tansi Choir.
Michael was delighted to see so many of his family members present including his father, Frank, his sister Collette and two brothers, Paul and Kevin; his other sister, Frances, was unable to attend on the day. Their mother, Helen (having died in 2012) lived long enough to see Michael begin his Religious life as a Friar. His mother's sister - a Poor Clare nun, Mother Frances, was able to travel from Carlow, Ireland, and so, too, his uncle, Rev. Michael O'Brien, a Missionary of the Sacred Heart priest, who lives in Texas in the United States.
A fine reception was held in the parish hall subterranean to the church, with a sit-down lunch of roast beef laid on for 140 guests. Friars had travelled from Ireland as well as the UK and other guests from the Religious congregations and parishes whom Michael had known through his ten years since joining the Friars in 2008.
As transitional deacon he had pastoral placements in St Boniface's Friary, San Francisco and also with the Irish Friars at the international English-speaking parish in Brussels. Father Michael is now assigned to the Franciscan community at Stratford, London.