Requiem Mass was held for John Hume’s widow at 11 am in St Eugene’s Cathedral.
Among the mourners was Irish President Michael D Higgins, former UUP firster Minister Lord David Trimble, SDLP leader Colum Eastwood, Rev Andrew Forster, Church of Ireland Bishop of Derry and Raphoe and Rev John Montgomery from the Methodist Church.
Mother-of-five Pat Hume (nee Hone) died on Thursday at home after a short illness.
She was aged 83.
As her family funeral got underway, Bishop of Derry, the Most Reverend Donal McKeown welcomed the diginitairies to what he described it as “first and foremost a family event at which they grieve the loss of a mother and grandmother. Their personal bereavement is at the heart of our gathering”.
Mrs Hume’ son Aidan told mourners that she was “unflappable” and he described her as a “constant” by his father’s side.
He said the greatest gift she bestowed on her family was unconditional love, which “sustained us when the world was full of uncertainties”.
Aidan said his mother “loved people and they loved her”, describing a trip to the supermarket with her as like a “half-day event”.
“Human connection was fundamental to mum’s existence – she had an incredible ability to establish a special connection,” he said.
“The only person who could beat John Hume in an election was Pat,” he joked.
He said that his father wouldn’t mind admitting that she “was the more glamorous side of the partnership”.
Concelebrating her Requiem Mass, in his Homily, Fr Paul Farren told mourners: “Pat was a most wonderful and beautiful person.
“Much has been said about John and Pat in their unity about peacemaking. And it is all true.
“And of John brought the brilliant mind of peacemaking, Pat brought the pure of heart.
“And Pat’s pure heart was formed by two things: by her faith and by her call to be a mother.
“It was Pat’s faith which was a practical and loving, contemplative and silent of faither nutured by the Eucharist here at Mass nearly every day and nurtured by quiet prayer which enable pat to put the realities of life into the eternal context of God’s love.
“This is certainly how Pat got through the tough days in her life.
“And it was her faith which enabled her to see God in everybody she met. And Pat served God in those she met and she served them faithfully.
“If you went to Pat with a problem, your suffering became her suffering. Your pain became her pain. Your problem became hers to find a solution to, and she found solutions in her astute, wise, compassionate and quiet way and always avoided any type of fuss or focus on herself.“The empathy that Pat had was unique and incredible. And is why her work with Daphne Trimble (wife of Lord Trimble) after the Good Friday Agreement with victims which was so important to her.
“That is why she found it abhorrent that anybody or any government would believe that a line could be drawn under the pain and suffering of people.
“Her commitment to truth and justice was persistent and unquestioning. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for what is right, they shall be satisfied.
“Pat, formed by faith, did everything with a mother’s heart. She lived the vocation of motherhood in her home, in her community here in Derry and on the world stage.
“And the vocation of a mother is the most important vocation in the world because the vocation of a mother is to give life, it to give joy, it is to serve and it is always to others first. And Pat did these things in the most powerful, gentle, loving, profund and simple ways.
“I know you Therese, Aine, Aidan, Johno and Mo your mother created an oasis of peace and security, of joy and trust for you in the midst of much turmoil and danger in your younger lives.
“When your home was being attacked because your parents were committed to peace, your mother held you and protected you and never allowed you to lose confidence in the truth that peace was more noble and stronger than violence.
“And Pat’s loving went you five and her grand children she mothered us all from those she taught and every one of us, meeting us, looking at our faces detecting out tiredness and telling us to rest.
“Her mothering enabled her to ask questions all about us and families as soon as she met us and to be truly interested in our answers.
“Pat rarely told her own stories because she was so interested in our stories. And she could laugh. It was infectious and it was the cause of so much joy.
“I suppose the greatest example of her mothering came inn how she cared for John in his long illness in the last years of his life.
“With John, Pat was forever patient, forever loving, forever gentle and an example to us all.
“If truth be told, we thought God should have spared Pat years after John so she could focus on herself. But in hindsight, Pat Hume could never focus on herself.
“She always lived for others and that was viewed in the generous manner of her death.“Today we truly give thanks to God for the wonderful and unique gift that is Pat Hume. For her pure heart shaped by her faith. We never wanted her to leave this world because it was always brighter and more joyful when she was here.
“Today we pray that she has heard John calling ‘Pat’ again. And that she is brought to the heart of God where they are united together.
“We continue to pray for you, Pat’s family, that as you can rejoice in the gift that is your mother and that you will find peace and hope in your faith in Jesus who has defeated the power of death who is present with all of Heaven and on the altar everytime we celebrate Mass.
“We pray for Pat and it is no wonder that it was her heart which was worn out. She truly gave heart to God and us all.“We pray that rather than just remembering Pat, that we will be inspired to do as she did to see God in each other and be true peacemakers ourselves, children of God.
“We pray that Pat is now experiencing the fulfillment of the Beatitude ‘Blessed are the pure of heart’ that she is seeing God face to face forever and ever.”
After the funeral Mass ended, Pat Hume’s children removed her remains from St Eugene’s Cathedral to be taken to her final resting place beside John in the City Cemetery.Tags: