Dr Ian Paisley with his wife, children and grandchildren. PacemakerFOR the man who has had more farewells than Frank Sinatra, the Reverend Ian Paisley last night marked his retirement from the pulpit.
The 85-year-old former DUP leader, North Antrim MP and Northern Ireland First Minister has already taken a back seat in the political arena.
Last night a special service was held at the Martyrs' Presbyterian Church on the Ravenhill Road in Belfast to mark his farewell after more than 60 years as a pastor and church moderator.
The former DUP leader, who was a key figurehead in political and religious life in the North for many decades, gave his last sermon before a packed church in December.
Last night's service was attended by Free Presbyterian Church ministers. Tributes were paid by the Reverend Dr John Douglas and his son, the Reverend Kyle Paisley. He set up the Free Presbyterian Church in 1951 after a split with the main Presbyterian Church.