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Boyzone’s Shane Lynch ‘saying goodbye to showbiz forever’ after pilgrimage TV show

Shane, who joined Boyzone nearly 30 years ago in November 1993, says: “I need peace and tranquillity and to bow out.”

Shane (front right) with the rest of the celebrities

The participants had to stay in hostels

The Boyz: Keith, Ronan, Shane and Mikey© PA

Eugene MastersonSunday World

Boyzone star Shane Lynch insists that a pilgrimage he took part in for a new television series is the last thing he will ever do in showbiz.

Dubliner Shane last year announced he would no longer sing professionally. And he says the reason he took part in a religious trek through Portugal with other celebrities was to touch base with his inner soul.

“I am a Pentecostal Born Again Christian,” maintains Shane (46). “My relationship with God is very tight and I love it.

“The reason why I’m taking on this pilgrimage is just to find a bit of clarity in my life. I want to put myself into a position that I’ve never experienced before and hopefully find out some amazing and emotional things, so this pilgrimage for me is all about the knowledge I can gather, and about my God. This will be big walk for sure, for many reasons.”

Asked whether taking part in Pilgrimage: The Road Through Portugal was what led him to his decision, Shane revealed it “sealed the deal”.

He added: “Now, don’t get me wrong: the people, the crew, the walk were all brilliant. It’s just the process of making television – the stop-start, the cameras, the fireworks.

The participants had to stay in hostels

“I’ve played to 100,000 people multiple times, and I don’t need any more fireworks.”

Shane, who joined Boyzone nearly 30 years ago in November 1993, says: “I need peace and tranquillity and to bow out.”

The star, who was raised Catholic by his family in Donaghmede, says he will be saying “sayonara to television for ever” as he prepares to do “a 180 out of all that”.

Shane previously revealed he had been involved with clairvoyants and ouija boards, and claimed to have been frequently visited by evil spirits who tortured his mind in his teenage years.

He became a Born Again Christian in 2003, having been persuaded to convert by close friend Ben Ofoedu, who was his colleague in the band REDhill which Lynch joined after Boyzone played their final show in late 2019.

The father-of-two now lives in England, where he runs a pub and also spends his time driving cars. Taking part in the trek led Shane to share rooms in hostels with other male members of the group on the pilgrimage.

“In all the years of Boyzone life, 30 years, I’ve never shared one room with the boys. I’m a pretty private guy. The hostel scenario was a difficult one,” he admits.

Pilgrimage: The Road Through Portugal takes seven well-known personalities of differing faiths and beliefs on a personal journey along the northern route of the Fatima Way in Portugal in three hour-long episodes.

Pilgrims taking part are actress Su Pollard, who was raised in the Church of England; Jewish actress Rita Simons, who is a Pentecostal Born Again Christian, and reality TV star and influencer Vicky Pattison, who is agnostic.

The Boyz: Keith, Ronan, Shane and Mikey© PA

Bobby Seagull, a practising Catholic,will also be on the pilgrimage along with Nabil Abdulrashid, a comedian and practising Muslim, and Paralympian skier Millie Knight, who is a non-practising member of the Church of England.

Their destination is the sanctuary in the city of Fatima, where in 1917 three local shepherd children experienced several apparitions of the Virgin Mary. What was once a small village is now one of the biggest Catholic pilgrimage destinations in the world.

The celebrity pilgrims are on a deadline — they need to arrive in time for a major celebration which ends with a spectacular night-time candlelit vigil, attended by nearly 70,000 pilgrims who have travelled from across the world.

  • Pilgrimage: The Road through Portugal begins on BBC2 on Friday at 9pm.

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