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Archbishop Eamon Martin ( Irish Catholic bishops)

The Primate of All Ireland, Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh, has reiterated his call for action to finally retrieve the remains of Northern Ireland’s last few “Disappeared”: four men killed by the IRA during the Troubles, whose bodies have never been found. Source: Catholic Herald.

The Catholic Church in Northern Ireland recalls these men each year at a special Mass, which is designed both to bring spiritual consolation to the loved ones of the “Disappeared” and to raise awareness among the generations who have grown up since the 1998 Good Friday Agreement – a generation unaware of what it was like to live through violence from the 1960s to the 1990s which cost more than 3700 lives with up to 100,000 injured in Northern Ireland.

The men include British Army Captain Robert Nairac, who was abducted and murdered by the IRA in County Armagh in May 1977; Joseph Lynskey, a former Cistercian monk from west Belfast who went missing during the summer of 1972; Columba McVeigh from Donaghmore in County Tyrone who was 19 years old when he was abducted and murdered in October 1975; and Seamus Maguire, who went missing from Lurgan in County Armagh near the end of 1973.

The bodies of 13 other victims have been recovered.

This May will mark the 25th anniversary of the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims’ Remains (ICLVR), established by the Irish and British governments to find the bodies of 17 people murdered and secretly buried by republican paramilitaries during the Troubles.

Archbishop Martin said the “work of the ICLVR down the years is one of the positive outcomes of the Belfast Good Friday agreement” and he is “grateful to all who have worked on or with the commission in the painstaking task of finding and returning the bodies of loved ones to their families for a proper Christian burial”.


Let them finally have a Christian burial: Captain Robert Nairac and last of the ‘Disappeared’ from Northern Ireland’s Troubles (By Declan McSweeney, Catholic Herald)