STARK CONTRAST One of the drawings stuck to a pew inside Ballinrobe church, painted by one of children making their Confirmation, emphasising what the day was supposed to mean to them.
Apology issued after Ballinrobe Mass chaos
Local councillor says time will prove sincerity of apology
Ballinrobe locals react to violence at Confirmation service
Time will tell how genuine an apology issued by a Ballinrobe Traveller family is following last Tuesday’s violent scenes at a Confirmation Mass in the local church.
That’s the view of Ballinrobe-based Cllr Michael Burke who was speaking after an apology on behalf of the Sweeney family of Bog Road, Ballinrobe was read out by Parish Priest Fr Conal Eustace at Masses in the town at the weekend.
In the statement the Sweeney family apologised for the brawl which broke out at the end of a Confirmation service for 97 local children at St Mary’s Church, Ballinrobe on Tuesday afternoon last. They said that they regretted it and that such an incident will never occur in Ballinrobe again.
The chaotic scenes erupted at 1.30pm at the rear of the church with in the region of thirty men involved in a family feud between members of the Sweeney family from Ballinrobe and Sligo which is believed to have begun in the porch of the church and spilled out onto the grounds.
Film footage of the incident seen by The Mayo News shows at least one slash hook and a hurl among the weapons produced in the fight. Gardaí arrived on the scene within minutes and eventually brought it under control but Inspector Joe Doherty from Claremorris Garda Station described the situation as ‘volatile’.
So far there have been five arrests made in connection with the incident.
Cllr Michael Burke said that he and a lot of people in the town would judge the sincerity of the apology issued by the Sweeney family by virtue of their future actions.
“The view on the apology is that we will wait and see,” Cllr Burke told The Mayo News yesterday. “We have seen unwelcome events in this town in the past. The question is was this apology to their own advantage? A view is held that this apology from the Sweeneys was an opportunity to help their own cause going forward through the courts. Everyone has rights but everyone has responsibilities too.”
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