Reading from the book of names…

Andy Pollack with a sober and sobre way (subs needed) to spend this Good Friday in Dublin:

…the congregation of the Dublin Unitarian Church in St Stephen’s Green reads out the names of the more than 3,500 people who have died as a result of the war there.

To anyone’s knowledge this annual act of commemoration on Good Friday, now in its seventh year, is the only religious service of its kind in Ireland. From midday until mid-afternoon, members of that church will solemnly read out the names of the dead. At noon they will start with Anthony Abbott, a soldier from Manchester shot dead by the IRA in Ardoyne, north Belfast in 1976, and at around three they will finish with William and Letitia Younger, an elderly Protestant man and his daughter, who were beaten, stabbed and shot by intruders in their home a mile further north in Ligoniel in 1980.

Chronologically, the sad litany will start with John Patrick Scullion, the first victim of the Troubles, a Catholic storeman shot by the UVF in June 1966 as he walked back to the house in the Falls Road area he shared with his blind father.

The most recent victims, more than 40 years later, were Edward Burns and Joey Jones, killed in Belfast last month in what was believed to be a feud between dissident republicans.