Dedicated priest says farewell to his parish

The parish of St Francis Hill Chapel in Goosnargh has this week bid farewell to its parish priest, Father Michael Lakeland.
The parish of St Francis Hill Chapel in Goosnargh has this week bid farewell to its parish priest, Father Michael Lakeland.

The parish of St Francis Hill Chapel in Goosnargh has this week bid farewell to its parish priest, Father Michael Lakeland.

Father Lakeland has been parish priest at St Francis since 2009 and he has also now retired from the priesthood having completed over 50 years of service.

The occasion at St Francis was marked by a celebration mass last Friday afternoon with the children of the primary school.

Following the mass, head boy and girl Max Hodson and Amy Fishwick presented Father Lakeland with of a wooden standing plaque depicting St Francis with school children, plus a message asking Father Lakeland to remember pupils of the school in his prayers.

All the children made a card and the school hall was open for the children, parents, grandparents and parishioners for tea and cakes.

On Sunday, following Father Lakeland’s final mass, parishioners gathered in the school hall to say thank you.

He was then presented with a picture of the lovely church and grounds as a memento, and afterwards everyone enjoyed a hotpot and apple pie lunch.

A parish spokesperson said “The people of the parish are grateful for the dedication and commitment given by Father Lakeland.

“We wish him a long and happy retirement at the Little Sisters of the Poor residence in Preston – not too far from his beloved Preston North End and Deepdale where he is a regular supporter.”