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Brocagh On “Verge of War” Over Chapel/Church Debate

An internal argument in Brocagh amongst the clergy has left Brocagh on the “verge of war” according to local historian Benjamin McCorry. The row was initiated when new PP for the area Fr Davidson told the congregation at 11 o’clock mass last Sunday from the pulpit to stop calling it Brocagh Chapel and to adopt the correct title ‘Brocagh Church’. Word quickly filtered through to Fr McCann, a Brocagh born and bred priest, who used his homily at the 12 o’clock in Clonoe to denounce anyone who was prepared to follow Fr Davidson’s directive.

“Davidson is a Ballinderry blow-in, the bollox. What would he know about the way we talk. I’ve always called it Brocagh Chapel as did my father and my father’s father. I couldn’t give two shites about what the difference is between a chapel and a church. It’s the way we roll. Let me make myself clear – if I hear anyone calling it Brocagh Church who previously called it chapel then don’t be thinking you’ll be getting anything at communion time. I’d like to think that’ll be applied to Last Rites too.”

Picture from the 1799 brawl

Approximately 150 loyal Davidson followers walked out at that stage with abuse from the pulpit ringing in their ears. “Aye, away ye go ye good for nothing fat bastard”, Fr McCann reportedly shouted at a prominent Brocagh businessman as he left his seat which resulted in a wrestling session in the aisle between at least a dozen opposing parishioners. A shot was reportedly heard outside soon after, though many think it was just a timed gun-scare for chasing crows from the local strawberry field. Historian Benjamin McCorry predicted that this was just the start of it:

“There’s a history of strife over words in Brocagh. In 1799 there was a massive brawl up near Mountjoy Castle over whether it was ‘Lough Neagh’ or ‘Lock Neagh’. The resulting mini-townland war almost wiped out the whole population. I’d fear for the future. We all know that Fr Davidson is officially correct but that doesn’t mean we should change it. We still say ‘tay’ ‘flure’ and ‘dure’ don’t we? Anyone could saying ‘tea’ or ‘door’ is seen as some kind of marbled-mouthed uppity gobshite. I’m with McCann on this. Chapel for me.”

Although Pope Benedict has yet to intervene, rumours suggest the Vatican is waiting to see how the parish bulletin pans out this weekend as both priests have asked for a few lines each to rally their troops.

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