A humble ceremony with very deep significance for people bereaved by suicide took place in the sanctuary of Donegal Town’s Bank Walk.

Members of the community joined Darkness Into Light organisers on Monday evening to plant a Commemoration Tree.

Chairman Justin Gillespie explained the full significance of the ceremony.

“At Darkness Into Light people remembered their loved ones on a card which they placed on a tree,” he said. “Those cards will all be planted underneath this tree this evening.

“The person’s name that you wrote on the night will live and grow tall and strong with this tree.”

Fitting

Mr Gillespie said it was particularly fitting that the ceremony took place on the day when Pieta House opened its new service in Donegal.

“It is the first Pieta House north of Galway,” he said. “There are people going through its doors to get the help they need.”

Mr Gillespie praised the great fundraising efforts of the people of the north-west over the last few years. Without them and everyone who supported the campaign, the vision of bringing Pieta House to the region could not have been realised.

The tree was donated by Noreen Hoad. Both she and Darkness Into Light Treasurer Kevin Martin helped Vincent Callaghan to place the cards and plant the tree.

The committee would like to thank Ms Hoad who made this generous donation for each of the last three years. They also thanked Robbie Ellis of Ashtree Garden Centre for his kind sponsorship.

It is hoped that in time, a plaque will mark the location of the tree. Those who wrote the name of a loved one on a card at Darkness Into Light will be able to connect with their memory in the tranquil setting of the Bank Walk.

Monday evening’s ceremony ended with a period of quiet, personal reflection. Everyone then joined together in reciting the Lord’s Prayer.

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