Community is 'united in grief' - priest
A little girl, her hair braided in plaits, cried for her mother as the white coffin decorated with flowers bearing the remains of Ingrida Maciokaite was carried from St Nicholas Church on Wednesday morning.
Friends of the 31-year-old mother of two who was brutally stabbed to death just yards from the church were joined by local residents who came to pay their last respects to the young Lithuanian woman who had made her home in Dundalk.
Welcoming them to the church, Fr Rev Maciej Zacharek CC expressed his sympathy and that of the priests of the parish to her children, her aunt in Lithuania, her friends and neighbours.
'It is not easy today to speak,' he said. 'Words cannot express what we have inside us.'
Symbols of her life, a photograph of her beautiful children, a picture of her with her late mother, the phone she used to keep in touch with family and friends, her work apron showing how hard a worker she was, and her cigarettes and lighter and favourite coffee, were brought to the alter by friends.
The congregation heard that Ingrida will be missed by many. She was a young woman who came to Ireland around 12 years ago and was the mother of two beautiful children.
Fr Zacharek said that Ingrida was remembered as 'a very kind, loving person, ready to give 100 per cent for those she loved.' She loved flowers and gardening. She was 'a wonderful mother' yet 'in many ways she was childlike.'
He recalled that she had come from abroad and had made her home in Dundalk, had built relationships and made friends.
'Ingrida was taken so violently from our lives,' he continued, and he asked her friends to remember the love she had for them and to support one and other.
'We are united in pain but strengthened in faith.'
On behalf of her family and friends, he expressed gratitude to the people of Dundalk who had given their support so that her funeral could take place, and to the Lithuanian community for their expression of affection and support.