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‘Amazing Grace’ remembered as friend of archdiocese

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Former deputy premier died May 24
By BCC Staff

Photo: Grace McCarthy and her husband Raymond bid Pope John Paul II farewell during the Pontiff's departure ceremony at the Vancouver International Airport in 1984. McCarthy was the first woman in Canada to serve as deputy premier. (RCAV Archives)

Grace McCarthy was remembered both as a political pioneer and philanthropist in tributes from Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon and Premier Christy Clark during a state funeral honouring the former deputy premier, who died May 24.

McCarthy’s support for the Archdiocese of Vancouver was noted in a tribute from Msgr. Gregory Smith, who also spoke during the two-hour service at Christ Church Cathedral.

“So great was the appreciation of the late Archbishop James Carney that he arranged for her to represent the province at the farewell to Pope John Paul II at the Vancouver airport in 1984,” the pastor of Christ the Redeemer parish recalled.

“And so it is that we are attending the funeral of an Anglican who met a now-canonized Catholic saint,” he told congregation.

Msgr. Smith, who worked with McCarthy at the B.C. Legislature before entering the seminary, highlighted her personal kindness and concern for individuals alongside her more renowned contributions to the community.

Citing St. Paul’s words to the Corinthians about love, he said the legendary politician, nicknamed “Amazing Grace” by supporters, never forgot that people are at the heart of every worthwhile endeavour.

“Leadership without love is nothing to admire,” said Msgr. Smith, adding he prayed “that St. John Paul and Grace McCarthy are now discussing their shared conviction that love for the human person is where all true service begins and ends.”

McCarthy is survived by her husband Raymond and daughter Mary, who carries on her mother’s work at Vancouver’s CHILD Foundation, which supports research into intestinal and liver disorders in children.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 28 June 2017 12:32  

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