Priest Who Gave Lyra McKee Her Last Rites Recounts Night She Died

20 April 2019, 11:20 | Updated: 20 April 2019, 11:22

The Catholic priest who gave murdered journalist Lyra McKee her last rites says the Northern Ireland peace process can not be taken for granted.

Father Joseph Gormley told Matt Frei that he had just finished an hour of prayer on Holy Thursday when he was asked to conduct last rites for a young woman.

Journalist Lyra McKee was shot as she was observing rioting in Londonderry in Northern Ireland after violence broke out when police raided houses.

She was stood near a police car with other journalists.

Father Gromley said: "We were gathered in the church for an hour of prayer and as the congregation was leaving I got a message.

"The police told me that a young woman had died and that her partner had asked for a Priest to come over and administer her last rites."

Father Gromley also told Matt that he thought the Northern Ireland peace process 'should not be taken for granted'.

"Every act of violence does bring our minds and hearts back to what we call the really bad old days when instances like this were happening week in week out," he said.

"I hope and pray that there is a new resolve here to make sure that that doesn't happen.

"I know people will fear that, and it's good to fear that because it makes us not take the peace for granted."

But asked whether the lack of government in Northern Ireland and the politics surrounding Brexit have played a part in the violence, he said: "I think they'll use anything, I don't think there's a tendency for people to see Brexit as an issue here.

"They'll use anything."

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