Father Gary Donegan, the Belfast priest subjected to a vicious verbal assault by some Ardoyne residents at the weekend, has told of how he knew some of them through his pastoral work.
Fr Donegan was actually marking his last day after 15 years at Holy Cross when the incident happened on Saturday morning shortly after an Orange parade finally made it's way past the Ardoyne shops after a dispute lasting over three years.
"It was pure, bitter vitriolic bile that was in my face," he said. "Ironically some of the people who were doing this, I know very very well as I have dealt with them in quite serious pastoral situations.
"It was kind of strange that they turned like that."