The weekend of 10th March 2018 marked a meeting of significance to the Celebration of St Columbanus with the General Assembly of the Association of the Columban Way being hosted in S
Over 60 visitors representing the Civic governance of the towns along the Columban Way including the mayors of Ards and North down, Luxiuill , Bobbio and Vaprio d’Adda along with a French Senator and Councillors, were hosted in Bangor. A meeting in Brunswick Road, a public AGM in Bangor Abbey Parish Centre was followed by a Concert in Bangor Abbey.
The Association, which acts to encourage and promote shared culture in the spirit of Saint Columbanus contains members from across Europe including Italy, France and Switzerland.
The Annual General Meeting held in Bangor Abbey is planning to develop and expand the cultural activity such as the cultural and educational programs that have been supported by the Friends of Columbanus in Bangor and in Luxiuill. This cultural and educational work has enthusiastically been also supported by the “Green Butterflies”whose president led by Manuela Bertocin based in Andorra Italy who has visited an encouraged cultural contact with Bangor in many innovative ways including, with the support of our local Council, originating exchanges with teachers from Ballyholme Primary School and giving gifts and presentations to 4 primary schools in Bangor who joined in the project and to the representatives of the Friends of Columbanus of the four main churches.
A highlight of the March weekend was a celebration concert held the Bangor Abbey with the choirs of Bangor Abbey, Bangor Ladies Choir alongside the Cora di Andora from Italy and members of Ards CCE.
Visitors also enjoyed tours of Grey Abbey, Nendrum and North Down Museum to learn of local Christian Heritage in the Borough.
On a local level, work continues to develop the Columban Way within Northern Ireland and the republic. This concetrates on the creation of a walking route called Turas (Turas means Journey), running from Leinster to Bangor. Simone Derache was the first pilgrim to complete the Turas in June 2017 and it hoped sections will be available for test walks soon. The working groups will be keeping us of informed of developments as Sections of the Turas route , become available for wider usage. Cllr Deborah Girvan who also serves on the Friends of Columbanus Commitee is our main link on the local Committee.
Friends of Columbanus.