An Irish Christmas

By Lynda Millner   |   January 11, 2022
The Consul General of Ireland Marcella Smyth with Frank McGinity at the Christmas party

This was an all-things Irish Christmas party in a lovely downtown venue. You don’t have to be Irish to belong, but most members have some connection. It began with an Irish Christmas toast by Frank McGinity of the American Irish Historical Society.

“May peace and plenty be the first to lift the latch on your door, and happiness be guided to your home by the light of the candle of Christmas.”

This was an extra special evening because the Consul General of Ireland for the southwestern United States was with us, Marcella Smyth. She is based in Los Angeles. Ireland has been represented in California since 1933 and relationships in this part of the United States are deep and well-established. She also represents Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and Hawaii.

The Consul General’s aim is to build on the links between Ireland and this region in several areas working with the Irish community and local partners. They also work closely with the State Agencies — Screen Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, the Industrial Development Authority, and Tourism Ireland.

Smyth says, “Because Los Angeles is a world-leading capital when it comes to entertainment, the consulate has a particular focus on the creative industries, showcasing Ireland’s talented performers, writers, musicians, technology experts, and other creators. Our rich culture is also at the heart of our work.”

Smyth served in Belgium in various positions and in Canada as well. She is also a lecturer on social policy in the Institute of Public Administration. She has a BA in social science, a master’s in social policy, and a master’s in strategic studies.

The dinner and wine were outstanding, followed with a dessert of a yule log and champagne. The Santa Barbara High School Madrigal Singers were due to perform. Sadly, there was a COVID problem and they couldn’t come. 

McGinity ended the evening with a “Happy Irish Christmas to you all!”


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