Sunday 17 December 2017

'If there's no place in heaven for Terry Wogan... then God is way off' - emotional Fr Brian D'Arcy says good-bye to his life-long friend

Father Brian D'Arcy
Father Brian D'Arcy

David Kearns

An emotional father Brian D'Arcy has spoken of his last good-byes to his life-long friend veteran broadcaster Terry Wogan (77), who passed away on Sunday after a short battle with cancer.

The pair worked alongside one another for many years and despite Mr Wogan being an atheist, Fr D'Arcy said he had never met a “more spiritual, faith-filled man” in his life.

Summing up more than 40 years of fond memories together, he said if there was “no room in heaven for Terry Wogan… well then the God I’ve been preaching is way off.”

Speaking to RTÉ’s Marian Finucane, Fr D'Arcy was among hundreds of voices to take to the airwaves today to pay tribute to the former RTÉ and BBC presenter.

“He was filled with love and charity,” he said.

“Terry was so generous when it came to talking about religion in a practical way. It didn’t matter, Christian, Muslims, Jews… Terry was utterly respectful of everyone’s viewpoint.

Terry Wogan
Terry Wogan

“He helped so many people in a quiet way.”

Earlier today, an emotional Fr D'Arcy spoke to the BBC about saying good-bye to his friend during their final meeting on Thursday.

Struggling to hold back tears, he said: "I was with Terry on Thursday to say goodbye.

“It was a sad but beautiful occasion.

“The family will be awfully, awfully sad because they were the centre of his life… [but] at the same time, I'm glad he went without a long, lingering illness.”

The Northern Irish priest continued, later telling RTÉ Radio One that Mr Wogan was the best person he had ever worked with.

“He made you feel like you were the greatest thing since Johnny Carson.

“We use to have great banters and I’m sure half the ten million who use to listen to us had no clue what we were going on about, he’d break into Irish, he’d break into Latin, he break into all sorts along the way.

“It was just a joy to work with him.”

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