Forty years on from her historic Eurovision win, Dana Rosemary Scallon has spoken about her Catholic Faith has helped her throughout life particularly during the period in the North known as ‘the Troubles’.
During the RTÉ programme Dana – The Original Derry Girl broadcast this week, Mrs Scallon recalled how she felt inspired by her husband Damien keeping his Catholic faith despite the repeated bombings of his Newry hotel.
The 68-year-old said her faith was “deepened’ by the experience.
“I could see that he [Damian] had tremendous peace in the middle of this awful turmoil,” she said in the documentary.
“Gradually I began to feel that deepening of my own Faith, which was such a strength to me and is still a great strength to me through my life.”
The documentary traced how St John Paul II’s Totus Tuus (totally yours) motto for his 1979 visit to Ireland inspired Dana to write her first religious song.
This led to an album of religious music and she sang for the Pope in 1987 in New Orleans and again in 1993 at World Youth Day in Denver.
Dana represented Connaught-Ulster in the European Parliament from 1999-2004.
She twice ran for the presidency losing to Mary McAleese in 1997 and Michael D. Higgins in 2011.