Wednesday 19 December 2018

Murder accused is prayed for at funeral Mass

The husband of Natalia Karaczyn (30) who has been charged with her murder was prayed for at her funeral at Sligo Cathedral on Friday morning.

Sligo's Polish community turned out in large numbers at the 11.30 am funeral Mass for Natalia.

Her body was found on Tuesday morning last in a wooded area off the Holywell Road about two miles from the centre of Sligo town overlooking Lough Gill.

The mother of three had been reported missing on Sunday morning having gone out socialising in the town on Saturday night.

Her husband, Rafal (32) was charged with her murder at a sitting of Sligo District Court on Thursday.

He was mentioned during the reciting of Prayers of the Faithful by Fr. Brian Conlon at the funeral Mass. "Pray for Rafa, may Lord support him at this time," he told the congregation.

Prayers were also said for the couple's three boys, Oskar, Nikodem and Max, the Gardaí who had supported the family during the week and for all of Natalia's friends in Sligo for their help.

In his homily, delivered in Polish, Father Stanislaw Kardas, who is Chaplain to the Polish community in Sligo and who was chief celebrant, said the death of Natalia was unspeakably painful.

"It seems incomprehensible to our minds that she should be taken from this life.

"Faith invites us, however, to see that, in death, God has called Natalia to himself and has pointed us towards the ultimate goal of eternal life.

"In ordinary daily life, eternal truths are frequently pushed further into the background.

"In the face of this death of a young woman, beloved mother of three little children, we are invited to find, in the deepest recesses of our hearts, and to ponder, the hope that comes from our eternal vocation."

In a statement on the death of Natalia, Bishop of Elphin, Kevin Doran said there was a very real sadness in Sligo and her untimely death.

"On behalf of our Diocesan community, I wish to extend our sympathies and the promise of our prayers to Natalia's family and friends, both here in Sligo and at home in Poland.

"May God give to Natalia, eternal life with Jesus and all the saints, and may His Spirit console and strengthen her family in these very difficult days."

The hymn, 'Be Not Afraid' was sung by Olivia O'Hanlon as the coffin was brought into the church with many of the mourners visibly upset, some carrying yellow roses.

Sligo Champion