Fr Danny McCauley, who is originally from Clady but who worked in the missions in Africa for four decades, marked the monumental milestone recently with members of his family at Dromantine in Co Down.
Ordained in Newry Cathedral by Bishop Eugene O’Doherty, on December 16, 1970, Fr McCauley first went to Nigeria the following year. He spent the next 40 years in charge of six different parishes, returning to the North in 2015. He currently works with the SMA Community, at Dromantine.
“Looking back over 50 years in the priesthood I am grateful to God for my health and safety in sometimes challenging circumstances, one of which was the attack on my mission in February 2006,” Fr McCauley explained.
“I’m also thankful for the support of my family and the people of Doneyloop/Castlefin parish. Memories of the brilliant torchlight reception as I arrived in Clady village on a cold, wet Wednesday, December 16 ,1970.”
He continued, “My love for the resilient African people I’ve lived and worked with for over four decades is what kept me going back there year after year.”
In honour of Fr McCauley’s golden jubilee, scores of local people congratulated him via social media.
“We would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Fr Danny on his 50th year a priest and his dedication to his faith and his community in Urney and Castlefinn plus all his other parishes in Ireland and Nigeria where he served,” Marcus O’Neill said.
He added, “Folks this is truly a great man from our parish that has done some great work around the world spreading the word of god and helping others. A modern day hero in our midst.”
Gloria Perry stated, “Congratulations Fr Dan on your golden anniversary. An amazing milestone in the priesthood,” while Lynn Maxwell added, “Congratulations Fr Danny on your golden jubilee your mum is beaming in heaven today. God bless.”