Hundreds pack out funeral service for schoolgirl Ava White, 12, stabbed to death

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The people of Liverpool came together today to pay their respects to 12-year-old Ava White at her funeral on Thursday.

Ava died after being stabbed following her attendance at the Christmas light switch on in the city centre on November 25.

The service for the schoolgirl was held at Liverpool’s Metropolitan Cathedral today after her family asked members of the public to pay their respects at the Cathedral rather than follow the cortege.

During the service, the Archbishop of Liverpool, Most Reverend Malcolm McMahon OP said: "There is little sadder in life than the death of a child.

"Grief we are experiencing today is overwhelming so my deepest sympathy and that of Catholic community go out to Ava's family and her friends."

He added: "Those memories will continue to live in your hearts. I'm told she would try anything… didn't fear anything that's good she won't be afraid to step into the light of God.

"Some of you will remember her as a daredevil who always brightened up the day of those present."

Peter Duffy, Head of Notre Dame Catholic College, which Ava attended, read the first letter of Sr. John 3:1-2 at the service as mourners sang 'Amazing Grace'.

The Archbishop of Liverpool concluded the service by saying: "Tender Shepherd of the flock, Ava has entered your kingdom and now lies cradled in your love. Soothe the hearts of her parents and bring peace to their lives.

"Enlighten their faith and give hope to their hearts."

A round of applause was given to Ava as her coffin left the cathedral, as people have gone to light candles in her memory.

An order of service was provided to people at the service, which featured photographs of Ava as a child along with her full name, Ava Martin White.

A message from the family was placed on the back of the order of service, which read: "The family sincerely thank you for your cards, kind words of sympathy and support, and for attending the service today."

Earlier this morning, the funeral cortege went through Liverpool city centre with Ava’s coffin decorated with photographs of her.

Ava's coffin was brought to the cathedral in a horse-drawn carriage and was followed by her loved ones.

According to Liverpool Echo, many of the people attending t have worn tributes to Ava, such as t-shirt and jumpers with her picture one.

Ava's family asked those attending to not wear black so many mourners have worn bright colours to the service.

Media were invited by the family to attend but were asked not to take photos or video during the service.

Hundreds of people turned out for an emotional vigil to Ava on December 4 with anti-knife crime campaigners giving speeches to the crowd.

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The vigil saw the city sing You'll Never Walk Alone and release dozens of balloons bearing her name and personal tributes.

Ava was stabbed while with friends last month and was rushed to Alder Hey Children's Hospital. where she died a short time later.

A 14-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has been charged with her murder and is expected to face trial next year.

  • Funerals
  • Knife Crime

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