Fri, 03 Dec 2021

Justice Minister Naomi Long has officially opened a new House of Worship in Magilligan Prison.

Moderator of the Presbyterian Church Rev Dr David Bruce, Rev Dr Sahr Yambasu, President of the Methodist Church, Vicar General of the Derry Diocese Fr Michael Canny, and Church of Ireland Bishop of Derry and Raphoe Andrew Forster attended the official opening and dedication of the new building.

Unveiling a plaque to officially open the new House of Worship, Justice Minister Naomi Long said: "Prisons Week is a very important time for everyone associated with Prisons in Northern Ireland. While the official opening of this House of Worship had to be put on hold due to the pandemic, it feels apt that it is taking place during Prisons Week.

"The work of prison chaplains at Magilligan, and indeed across all the prisons, takes place without fanfare and without the knowledge of many people outside of prisons. However, they are an essential part of the prison community."

Director General Ronnie Armour said, "The opening of this new church facility is significant as it provides a vocal point for chaplaincy and their important work and it sends out a clear signal of our commitment to having a prison here in the North West.

"I want to thank everyone for being with us today for this important event, particularly the leaders and representatives of our four main churches. I have no doubt this building will become an important part of the fabric here at Magilligan."

WATCH: Minister Long officially opens a new House of Worship at Magilligan Prison https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZslL7FEaNBw

Notes to editors:

1. Magilligan Prison is a medium to low security prison which holds male prisoners with six years or less to serve and who meet the relevant security classification.

2. Photo Captions:

Photo 1: Justice Minister Naomi Long unveils a plaque to officially open the new House of Worship at Magilligan Prison. Included are Magilligan Prison Governor Gary Milling and Director General of the Northern Ireland Prison Service Ronnie Armour.

Photo 2: Justice Minister Naomi Long is pictured at the official opening of the new House of Worship at Magilligan Prison with Ronnie Armour, Director General of the Northern Ireland Prison Service, Gary Milling, Governor of Magilligan Prison and the Magilligan Prison chaplaincy.

Photo 3: Justice Minister Naomi Long is pictured at the official opening of the new House of Worship at Magilligan Prison with Ronnie Armour, Director General of the Northern Ireland Prison Service, Gary Milling, Governor of Magilligan Prison, Rev Dr Sahr Yambasu, President of the Methodist Church, Fr Michael Canny, Vicar General of Derry Diocese, Rev Andrew Forster, Church of Ireland Bishop of Derry and Raphoe, and Rev David Bruce, Moderator of the Presbyterian Church.

Photo 4: Justice Minister Naomi Long is pictured at the official opening of the new House of Worship at Magilligan Prison with (from left) Rev Frank O'Hagan, Co-ordinating Chaplain Magilligan Prison, Gary Milling, Governor of Magilligan Prison and Ronnie Armour, Director General of the Northern Ireland Prison Service.

3. Media enquiries should be directed to the Department of Justice Press Office via email to: press.office@justice-ni.gov.uk

4. Follow the department on Twitter @Justice_NI

5. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

Share this page

More Belfast News

Access More

Sign up for Belfast News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!