'God is the only rightful judge' - Mass held for killer dad Alan Hawe despite anger of mum Clodagh's family
Killer dad Alan Hawe was remembered at an anniversary Mass last night at the church where the wife and three sons he murdered are buried.
The parish priest, Fr Felim Kelly, said Hawe will be in the "hands of God now for his mercy and for his care", after the "unspeakable horror" of the brutal killing.
"We pray for Alan after a shocking incident just over a year ago today and we trust Alan to the Almighty God, who is the only rightful judge," he said.
"We will try to think of two families who are struggling at this moment in time," he added.
Fr Kelly offered a prayer for Clodagh and the three boys, who he said "are at peace now".
The priest also offered prayers for the parents and family of Hawe.
A total of 34 people attended the service.
Four of Hawe's relatives were among them.
Clodagh's family were left devastated when plans for the service were first revealed.
Hawe's body was exhumed from the graveyard across the road in May following multiple requests from her relatives.
Last night, eight of Clodagh's relatives quietly visited the grave where the family are buried while the service remembering Hawe took place.
The two sets of families did not speak to each other when Hawe's family entered and left the church.
The Hawe family stayed behind after the service for about 30 minutes to avoid the media before leaving by separate exits.
On entering the church, the Hawes walked on the grass only yards from the grave of the family.
Clodagh (39) and her children Liam (14), Niall (11) and Ryan (6) were murdered by Hawe in their home near Ballyjamesduff, Co Cavan, last year.
The killer dad later took his own life.
A separate anniversary Mass was held for Clodagh and the three boys on Sunday, but the parish newsletter made clear that last night's service was for Hawe.
A close friend of Clodagh's family insisted that they had no idea who organised the service that was scheduled to take place just 9km from the scene of the murders and suicide in Ballyjamesduff.
"We don't know who organised it - it's just down as 'Alan Hawe' for Wednesday evening Mass," said the friend.
"We feel it's disrespectful to Clodagh, Liam, Niall and Ryan considering their killer was moved away from them in May.
"Whoever booked that Mass are seen by the family to condone what he did.
"He took their lives - no amount of prayers will save him from the fires of hell."
Clodagh's sister Jacqueline Connolly spoke out against the service in a Facebook post.
"The Coll family did not organise a separate Mass for mass murderer Hawe," she said. "He was exhumed from that parish in May.
"We do not know who would be so disrespectful as to organise same.
"The question begs, do they condone what he did? Maybe it was a member of the Hawe family considering not one of them attended the anniversary Mass or the blessing of the graves for Clodagh, Liam, Niall and Ryan, the family who loved them so much."
Mary Coll and Jacqueline Connolly are fundraising for 'Cavan Lighthouse', which they hope will provide for family aid refuge for victims of domestic violence. Donations can be made here
Samaritans 24 hr Freephone Helpline: 116123 www.samaritans.org or firstname.lastname@example.org.