Father John Paul MacKinnon
FOLLOWING last week’s tragedy, Barra’s parish priest urged the island community to come together and to pray together.
He said: ‘A week which began normally for so many has turned out to be real “living nightmare” especially for two of our island families.
‘Today we face the reality that one of our teenage girls, Laura MacIntyre, aged only 15, is in hospital in Manchester fighting for her life with her parents by her bedside.
‘And sadly another of our beautiful teenage girls, Eilidh MacLeod, aged only 14, has died tragically in Manchester because of the terrible atrocity of the terrorist bombing.
‘I have spoken to both families, to both sets of parents and they have asked me to tell everyone that they are so grateful for all your love and support, prayers and messages.
‘Their hearts are broken, their lives have changed forever but they are lifted up by the love and support of their island and also by the wider world.’
Urging parishioners, he said: ‘Be together and pray, pray continuously as the early apostles and followers of Jesus did in their own time of need.
‘Praying to the Holy Spirit to come down upon our islands and communities and families, and especially upon the MacLeods and MacIntyre family.’
He added: ‘God has a special place for our dear, beautiful Eilidh, she will be united forever with God’s holy angels. She will forever see the glory of God face to face and will forever be in God’s love. She will forever be loved and remembered by her family and by all her many friends. Our loss is certainly heaven’s gain.’