The parish hall was decked out with streamers and bunting. Music played as nearly 100 parishioners – ages 2-92 arrived Saturday afternoon, 9 November. Tables were festooned with imaginative cooking, baking, and confectionary. Parents rushed their children back from rugby practice and ballet lessons. Senior parishioners altered their schedules.

Our clergy freed their diaries.

The centrepiece of the festivities was an iced birthday cake, with just one candle – because we in the parish of St Mary’s and Holy Family, Ipswich, had come to celebrate the first Birthday party of our Family Groups.

Before he led the ‘Happy Birthday’ chorus, our Parish Priest, Fr John Warrington, who is an integral part of the Family Groups, said how proud he was to see such a wonderful cross-section of the parish being together and celebrating happily as a community.     

John Cassidy