St Ignatius House of Writers

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St Ignatius House of Writers

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  • UF 35 & 36 Lower Leeson Street

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Andrews, Paul, 1927-2018, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/818
  • Person
  • 10 January 1927-27 November 2018

Born: 10 January 1927, Campsie, Omagh, County Tyrone
Entered: 14 September 1944, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1958, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 02 February 1962, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 27 November 2018, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the Milltown Park, Dublin community at the time of death.

by 1951 at Berchmanskolleg, Pullach, Germany (GER S) studying
by 1960 at Nth American Martyrs, Auriesville NY (NEB) making Tertianship
by 1964 at Selly Oak, Birmingham (ANG) studying

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/a-man-of-many-talents/

A man of many talents
Milltown Chapel was packed on Friday morning, 30 November, for the funeral of Paul Andrews SJ, who passed away peacefully in Cherryfield Nursing Home on 27 November. A large number of family members joined Paul’s fellow-Jesuits, and they paid tribute, both by bring up gifts and by recounting stories, to the deep and meaningful role he played in their lives. In his opening remarks, the principal celebrant Bill Callanan SJ noted the many talents Paul had received and the generous way in which he responded to them. Paul was a writer, a therapist, a psychoanalyst, an educationalist, and a spiritual director. He was also a pivotal presence at critical moments in the life of the Irish Jesuit province.

In his homily Bruce Bradley SJ picked up this same theme, emphasising Paul’s willingness and enthusiasm when it came to a new venture. He was particularly heartened by his work in the 1970s chairing several national committees and writing their reports, most notably the ICE (Intermediate Certificate Examination) and FIRE (Future Involvement of Religious in Education). But his involvement in education was not only at a policy level. Over the years he taught in Clongowes, head-mastered in Gonzaga, and was rector of Belvedere College. He also, for 18 years, directed St Declan’s special school, a venture founded by the Jesuits for primary school children who need special attention and support for personal or emotional reasons. He was especially dedicated to this work. Both in St Declan’s and through private practice, Paul served about 10,000 individual clients in psychotherapy or spiritual direction. As Bruce Bradley said, “Paul was effortlessly intelligent and correspondingly but unselfconsciously articulate, but he wore his learning lightly and what he knew and what he could achieve through his education was essentially in aid of the pastoral ministry to which he had dedicated his life.”

Fr Bradley also recalled a curious accomplishment of Paul’s from his time as editor of the Old Clongownian, when he was a scholastic:
In 1955, well-read and highly cultured man that he was and always remained, with full knowledge of what he was doing, he invited a near-contemporary of Joyce to write his reminiscences of the college in the 1890s, in which the writer recalled what he had heard of Joyce at that time. This was the first occasion when any reference had been made to the school’s most famous past pupil for more than fifty years, even his death in 1941, as by then a world-renowned writer, having been passed over without comment in the college magazine and in other Jesuit quarters. Undeterred, not setting out to shock or act as the enfant terrible and draw attention to himself, which was never his way, but judging that it was time and, although even – as it used to be said – ‘a mere scholastic’ (how we wish we had a few more ‘mere scholastics!’) and in his mid-twenties, Paul was quite prepared to break the disapproving silence and begin the process of setting the record straight at last.

In many ways throughout his Jesuit life, Paul proved himself to be a skilled communicator. He wrote over 300 articles for the Sacred Heart Messenger, about 1700 contributions to Sacred Space, a best-selling book called Changing Children, and many sections of other books and magazines, in psychology, Jesuit history, and spirituality. In 2010 he began working in Irish Jesuit communications, editing Irish Jesuit News and Interfuse, and writing the obituaries of Jesuits.

The enthusiasm which Paul showed in all his work ventures also showed in his more leisurely activities. In particular he was a very keen fisherman, in Ireland, England and even New Zealand, which he loved to visit in the later years of his life.

Ar dheis Dhé go raibh a anam dílis.

Early Education at Cross & Passion, Lytham St Annes; CBS, Great Crosby; Belmont Abbey, Hereford; Wimbledon College, London; St Columb’s Derry; Blackrock College, Dublin
1946-1950 Rathfarnham - Studying Classics at UCD
1950-1953 Pullach, Isartel, Germany - Studying Philosophy at Berchmanskolleg
1953-1955 Clongowes Wood College SJ - Regency : Teacher; CWC Cert in Education
1955-1959 Milltown Park - Studying Theology
1959-1960 Auriesville, NY, USA - Tertianship in Our Lady of the Martyrs
1960-1963 Rathfarnham - Minister of Juniors; Inspector of Studies in Colleges of Province; Psychology Studies at UCD
1963-1966 Birmingham, England - Studying Pedagogy at Birmingham University
1966-1972 Gonzaga College SJ - Prefect of Studies; Teacher of Religion; Province Prefect of Studies
1971 Directory of Province Organisation Project
1972-1976 Loyola House - Special Secretariat; Writer
1976-1982 Belvedere College SJ - Rector; Lecturer in Psychology at UCD & Milltown; Director of St Declan’s, Northumberland Road, Dublin
1982-1989 Gonzaga College SJ - Director of St Declan’s; Lecturer in Psychology at UCD; Writer
1988 Psychotherapy Studies - St Vincent’s Hospital Dublin
1989-2000 Leeson St - Director of St Declan’s; Lecturer in Psychology at UCD
1992 Province Consultor; Chair Board of St Declan’s School
1996 Consultant Psychotherapist; Lecturer; Writer
1999 Sabbatical
2000-2006 Manresa House - Rector; Continuing Formation Delegate; Treasurer; Counselling; Writer
2006-2010 Leeson St - Director Communications; Associate Editor Sacred Space; Therapist; Directs Spiritual Exercises; Board Jesuit Communications
2008 Editor “AMDG” & “AMDG Express”
2010-2018 Milltown Park - Assistant Editor Sacred Space; Editor AMDG Express; Directs Spiritual Exercises; Therapist; Writer
2012 Editor Irish Jesuit News; Editor Interfuse; Editor Province Obituaries; Assistant Chaplain at Cherryfield Lodge
2015 Chaplain at Cherryfield Lodge
2016 Editor “Interfuse”; Province Obituaries; Rector’s Admonitor
2017 Prays for the Church and the Society at Cherryfield Lodge

Baggot, P Anthony, 1918-2001, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/585
  • Person
  • 21 October 1918-19 March 2001

Born: 01 October 1918, Dublin
Entered: 14 September 1936, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1949, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1954, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 19 March 2001, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the Gonzaga College, Dublin community at the time of death.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 108 : Special Edition 2001

Obituary

Fr Anthony (Tony) Baggot (1918-2000)

21st Oct. 1918: Born in Dublin
Early education at Dominican College, Cabra and Belvedere College
14th Sept. 1936: Entered the Society at St. Mary's, Emo
15th Sept. 1938: First Vows at St. Mary's, Emo
1938 - 1941: Rathfarnham, studying Arts at UCD
1941 - 1944: Tullabeg - studying Philosophy
1944 - 1946: Belvedere College - Regency
1946 - 1950: Milltown Park - studying Theology
31st July 1949: Ordained at Milltown Park
1950 - 1951: Tertianship at Rathfarnham Castle
1951 - 1953: Emo - Socius to Novice Director
1953 - 1959: Clongowes - Rector
2nd Feb. 1954: Final Vows
1959 - 1962: Rathfarnham - Spiritual Father to Juniors; Assistant Director of Retreat House
1962 - 1969: Leeson St. - Director Sodalities; Editor of Madonna
1969 - 1978: CIR - Superior
1978 - 1983: CIR - Director Marriage Courses,
1983 - 2001: Gonzaga - Director Marriage Courses, Courses in spirituality and relationships.

Tony was admitted to Cherryfield Lodge in July 1999 suffering from prostate cancer. He remained in reasonably good health until three months before his death, when walking became difficult for him. He died peacefully at Cherryfield at 3.30 a.m. on Monday, 19th March, 2001.

Myles O' Reilly preached at Tony's Funeral Mass...

We are all here because we have known Tony Baggot in some capacity - as a friend, a relative, a Jesuit colleague, a counsellor, a participant in one of his retreats or workshops, or a grateful reader of his writings, or a carer from the Jesuit nursing home in Cherryfield. We have all been deeply touched and enriched by his gentle spirit, by his wisdom, compassion and his kindness, We are here because we want to acknowledge our love for him and our gratitude to God for him. We are only a small fraction of the many thousands of people that Tony touched throughout his 64 years as a Jesuit. To Tony all this positive regard for him would be totally mystifying. He placed himself in the lowest seat at the table of the Lord, but we intuitively know that Jesus will place him in the highest seat - “Well done good and faithful servant, come and inherit the kingdom which God has prepared for you since the beginning of the world”.

Tony had a secret weapon that enabled these qualities that endeared him so much to others to shine forth and through him. A prayer that he loved and said everyday and that he said frequently at his weekly Mass with the boys and the teachers here in Gonzaga for the last 15 years of his life, barring the last two when he got sick. It is a prayer he often used during his Retreats and Workshops also. It goes like this:

Lord Jesus I give you my hands to do your work
I give you my feet to go your way
I give you my ears to listen like you I give you my tongue that I may speak your words
I give you my mind that I may think like you I give you my heart that you may love in me
I give you my spirit that you may pray in me
I give you my whole self that you may grow in me So that it is you, Lord Jesus, that may live, love and pray in me.

What we loved in Tony were the qualities of Jesus shining through him - the Beatitudes - poor in spirit, gentle, merciful, a peacemaker etc. There are many eras to Tony's life, an only child born to Patrick and Harriet Baggot. Tony a Belvederian, who as a boy was a splendid pianist and tennis player, joined the Jesuits at the age of 18 and did the usual training. He was ordained in 1950 and only then did his interesting and varied pastoral life begin. He started with two years as Socius to the Novice Master in Emo.

Then, at the age of 32, he was made Rector of Clongowes for 6 years - he was the youngest Rector ever in the history of the Irish Province. One of our Jesuit Gonzaga community remembers at the age of 11 going to Clongowes and Tony was the first Jesuit he shook hands with. Little did he know that he would be the last Jesuit to hold Tony's band before he died last Monday night - on the Feast of St Joseph, patron of the dying.

After Clongowes Tony went back again to formation work, to being spiritual father to the young Jesuit Juniors in Rathfarnham for 3 years, and also to being a retreat director at the retreat house there. Then, in 1962, he was appointed as Editor of the Madonna, which came on in leaps and bounds under his control. That was where I first met Tony through his writings in the Madonna. I used to marvel, as a novice and a Junior, at his ability to weave passages from novelists like Graham Greene and Morris West into his articles and show how all that is, is Holy, and that God is the deepest inside of us.

Then, in 1969, Tony went to NCIR from where he became director of the Jesuit pre-marriage course for 17 years. He became a legend in his own time in his work. On some of his courses he had over 100 couples, and had no difficulty in filling the Milltown Park hall for a public lecture on marriage. During this time he wrote 3 books on marriage that were best sellers in their day, “To have and to hold”, “You and your marriage” and “Enjoy a happy marriage”.

Tony was a great listener and was particularly sensitive to women. He was an intuitive feeling type, as in the Myers Briggs personality definition, rather than a rational thinker. He learned from experience more than from principles. I am currently chaplain to a group of young married couples that meet every fortnight to help one another grow in their marriage. Only last month one of them read “To have and to hold”, and was enthralled by it, and wants it to be one of the prescribed books for the group. During these 17 years Tony gradually got into counselling, and helped hundreds, if not thousands, of couples.

One of those couples who met Tony 38 years ago, and who are here today, went to Tony with a dilemma – The mother of the Bride to be, who was not too keen to let her daughter go, said her daughter was too young and wasn't ready to get married etc. Tony paused for a while then broke into a grin. “Why don't you go to the maternity boutique in Leeson Street, and buy a maternity dress and hang it up in your wardrobe - that will surely help her to let go!!!”

Tony came to Gonzaga here in 1983 and continued his marriage work for 3 more years. After that he became a full time therapeutic counsellor and ran courses on spirituality and relationships in Tabor House, Chrysalis Conference Centre, and in the Dominican centre in Sion Hill. He became very interested in healing early childhood wounds and pioneered some splendid work in this area, which is still carried on in Chrysalis today.

He never charged any money for his work but he received so many donations that he refused to take a state pension – “Others might need it more than me”, he would say. All this wonderful productivity and creativity came from Tony's depths and from his spirituality. Some quotations from Tony's writings will give us an idea of what resonated with Tony.

Inevitably we live in the presence of holy mystery, a presence we cannot escape, for we are immersed in it. In music, in the sea, in a flower, in a leaf, in an act of kindness, I can see what we call God in all these things."

I said to the cherry tree, “Tell me of God”, and the cherry tree blossomed. That is more eloquent than any definition of God for me.

When I address God I do not address one who is outside. God is the deepest inside of everything, myself included, and the goal of personal growth is the birth of God in the soul. Life itself is the primary sacrament. Religious faith is human life seen as a disclosure of God.

What is called losing the faith is often not so, but a search for a deeper one.

God speaks from the depths of the heart, not the top of the head.

The movement of God, or the movement, which is God, activates me, flows through me.

Rather than governing from without, God is enlivening from within.

This one work has to do - Let all God's glory through (G M Hopkins)

Spiritual life is the flowering cosmic energy and Jesus, as the high point of God's presence, released a new spiritual power - the Christ power. That presence which radiated from his physical body in Palestine is to radiate through his mystical body in the world now.

He was one who, precisely by being human in the fullest degree, was God's existence in the world -- His divinity or godly quality was not something different from his humanity but was his humanity at its highest point. The Ignatian description for Tony's spiritual journey during these fruitful years would be that he lived the grace of the Second Week. That is, working and labouring with Christ in bringing about his kingdom in the world. But little did he know that, like his master, Jesus, his last few years would be a sharing in the sufferings of Christ before he entered into his glory.

Tony gave his last retreat almost three years ago. From then on his health went slowly into decline. The slow onslaught of what turned out to be cancer of the bone began. Tony lost all his physical energy, he lost all taste for things he liked - gardening, reading and writing. His memory was deteriorating, too. He could no longer do his counselling. He loved being a priest and felt he understood it more richly than ever. He cried with frustration at the loss of not being able to minister any more.

The black dog of depression set in with bouts of scrupulosity. He felt so guilty at occupying a room in Cherryfield at such expense. Surely he wasn't sick enough. He was, like Christ on the cross, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me”. He felt so empty. The days were so long - nothing to do - nothing to live for – he couldn't pray, read, think.

Even though this was his inner state most of the time, he was always so gracious with the nurses, never failed to be aware of any act of kindness and always quick to thank them. Thank you for your care' he used to say and they grew to love him. They could see that there was something special about Tony, a childlike transparency, a constant sincere gratitude, a freedom from pretence, an honesty of feeling whether positive or negative, never a sharp or nasty word - always gentle. Their acts of kindness were his experience of God during those last dark years, as also were the visits of his friends that he so much appreciated.

Last September a change came about in Tony - a peace came into his soul and it came from saying over and over again this simple prayer every night in the dark of the chapel for half an hour. There was more surrender and humble simplicity in this prayer than in the previous one. Through this prayer he found the peace and the capacity to accept what was happening to him.

I place my hands in yours. I place my will in yours, Lord
I place my will in yours. I place my days in yours, Lord
I place my days in yours. I place my thoughts in yours, Lord
I place my thoughts in yours. I place my heart in yours, Lord
I place my heart in yours. I place my hands in yours, Lord I place my hands in yours.

Angela Ashwin

Whenever his friends would visit him in Cherryfield he would always be glad to give them his blessing before they left. He would always say with a sign of the Cross on the forehead - May Jesus Christ and his Holy Spirit guard you and guide you on your way'. One day, close to his death, I was with him, and was about to leave, but Tony wasn't offering his blessing. “Aren't you going to give me your blessing?” He looked confused. The words wouldn't come to him. And then, after a pause, he said “My suffering is my prayer for you”. We can be sure that his sufferings were offered for all of us, not just me.

All he had left to give were his sufferings and his gratitude. Like his saviour on the cross, on Monday night, surrounded by a few friends Tony's work was finished. With Him he could say “It is finished. Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit”. “Lord Jesus receive my soul”. A few hours before he died, Tony's eyes came back from their unconscious glazed state, and focusing, looked intently across to the far window as if he was seeing somebody, he smiled and sank back into his glazed look again. Blessed are those who die in the Lord. Happy indeed, the Spirit says. Now they can rest forever after their work, since their good deeds go with them. (Apoc. 14.13) We surely have an advocate in heaven in Tony Baggott.

Barrett, Cyril D, 1925-2003, Jesuit priest, art historian, and philosopher

  • IE IJA J/561
  • Person
  • 09 May 1925-30 December 2003

Born: 09 May 1925, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1942, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1956, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1960, ST Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 30 December 2003, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the Milltown Park, Dublin community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1962 at St Ignatius, Tottenham London (ANG) studying
by 1963 at Mount Street, London (ANG) studying
by 1964 at Church of the Assumption, Warwick (ANG) studying
by 1973 at Warwick University (ANG) teaching
by 1993 at Campion Hall, Oxford (BRI) teaching

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Barrett, (Denis) Cyril
by Patrick Maume

Barrett, (Denis) Cyril (1925–2003), Jesuit priest, art critic and historian, and philosopher, was born Denis Barrett in Dublin on 9 May 1925 (Cyril was his name in religion). He was the son of Denis Barrett, the last assistant commissioner of the Dublin Metropolitan Police. His mother died of cancer when he was aged three, and his father subsequently remarried; the two marriages produced four sons and a daughter. Young Denis grew up at the family home in Booterstown, south Co. Dublin; his relationship with his stepmother Evelyn was close and affectionate. The family background was well‐to‐do catholic with some landed gentry elements which might have been described as ‘castle catholic’ but which offered scope for self‐expression, often eccentric; like several of his ancestors, Barrett was noted for charm, eccentricity, and intellectual brilliance.

He was educated at Killashee school in Naas, at Ampleforth College, Yorkshire, and at Clongowes. He joined the Jesuits in 1942, underwent a Thomist training in philosophy at the Jesuit college in Tullabeg, and studied theology at Milltown Park in Dublin. The Jesuits recognised and encouraged his academic vocation, and his career took advantage of the wide latitude allowed to an imaginative Jesuit in pursuance of his vocation. He studied Latin and history at University College Dublin (the latter discipline, as taught by John Marcus O’Sullivan (qv), had a strong philosophical component, and Barrett recalled being introduced to political philosophy by studying Rousseau as being thrown in at the deep end) and graduated with a first class BA in 1947. After a year studying anthropology and the role of myth at the Warburg Institute, Barrett began a peripatetic teaching career, including three years at Clongowes, three years teaching psychology at Tullabeg, and a period at Chantilly (France). He also studied theology at Milltown Park. Barrett was ordained priest in 1956 and took his final Jesuit vows in 1960. He undertook advanced research in philosophy at the University of London, receiving a Ph.D. in 1962 for a dissertation on symbolism in the arts.

In 1965 Barrett was one of two founding members of the philosophy department at the University of Warwick, where he was successively lecturer (1965–7), senior lecturer (1967–72) and reader (1972–92). Shortly after his appointment to Warwick he established his reputation, first by editing a well‐received selection of papers by innovators in the philosophy of art and criticism, Collected papers on aesthetics (1965), then by persuading the notoriously reluctant Wittgenstein estate to allow him to publish a collection of notes by three students of Wittgenstein of the philosopher’s remarks on aesthetics, psychology and religion. Lectures and conversations on aesthetics, psychology and religious belief (1966) offered new perspectives on Wittgenstein’s aesthetic and religious interests, whose extent had barely been realised, and became the basis for an extensive critical literature.

Barrett maintained his involvement with Wittgenstein throughout his career, summing up his views in Wittgenstein on ethics and religious belief (1991). He maintained that the gap between Wittgenstein’s early and late views had been exaggerated; the importance Wittgenstein attached to value remained constant and the Tractatus logico‐philosophus, widely seen as an exercise in positivism, was in inspiration a document of moral inquiry. He did not call himself a Wittgensteinian (he was sceptical of the concept of philosophical discipleship) but was influenced by Wittgenstein in his eclectic preference for addressing disparate problems rather than seeking to build an overarching system, and in his interest in the nature of perception.

The mature Barrett held the Wittgensteinian view that religion could not be stated in propositional terms (i.e. as a set of beliefs) but can only be experienced as a way of life, though Barrett also maintained that this did not entail relativism between such ways; real belief was required. This view would have been seen as heterodox by large numbers of Christians throughout the history of Christianity (including some of Barrett’s contemporaries) but was part of a wider reaction within twentieth‐century catholic theology against what were seen as excessively mechanical and rationalistic forms of neo‐Thomism and of a desire to rediscover the approach of the early church fathers based on the view that reason might illuminate faith from within but could not create it where it did not exist.

Barrett disliked clerical politics and what he saw as the intellectual narrowness and social conservatism of the church hierarchy. He was hostile to the neo‐orthodoxy of Pope John Paul II; his comment in a public venue on the day of the pope’s attempted assassination by Mehmet Ali Agca (13 May 1981), that the greatest fault of ‘that bloody Turk’ had been not shooting straight (Times, 15 Jan. 2004), was occasionally cited by more conservative catholics as symbolic of the perceived deterioration of the Jesuits after the second Vatican council. Barrett’s friends recall, however, that despite his pleasure in flouting what he regarded as petty‐fogging rules and the constraints of his calling, he maintained a deep personal faith in God and was a valued and compassionate confessor and adviser; beneath his questing was an underlying simplicity.

He was a champion of various schools of modern art, particularly Op Art (in 1970 he published one of the first significant books on this form of abstract art, which uses optical illusions to focus the viewer’s attention on the process of perception). He was a regular visitor to eastern Europe where he combined religious activity with encouragement of those artists who were resisting official pressure to conform to Soviet realism; his trips were financed by eastern bloc royalties from his own publications (which could not be transferred into western currencies) and the profits from smuggling out disassembled artworks as ‘agricultural implements’. He also helped to mount several art exhibitions to popularise favoured trends, and established extensive (and hard‐bargained) relationships with London dealers. He played a significant role in building up Warwick University’s art collection, and at various times donated forty works from his own collection (including items by Bridget Riley, Micheal (Michael) Farrell (qv), and Yoko Ono) to the university. Barrett’s fascination with kitsch led him to produce a paper, ‘Are bad works of art “works of art”?’ (Royal Institute of Philosophy Lectures, vi (1973), 182–93), inspired by some of the religious art he encountered at Kenilworth Priory, Warwick. (Barrett’s answer was a qualified Yes.)

He did much to popularise modern art in Ireland through his frequent contributions to the Jesuit quarterly review Studies (he was assistant editor for a year in the early 1950s, and throughout his subsequent career wrote and reviewed for the journal on a wide range of topics) and other journals such as The Furrow and Irish Arts Yearbook. He produced a widely respected catalogue of nineteenth‐century Irish art (Irish art in the 19th century (1971)), and with Jeanne Sheehy (qv) contributed two chapters on the visual arts and Irish society to A new history of Ireland. VI. Ireland under the union, II. 1870–1921 (Oxford 1996) and an account of twentieth‐century art to A new history of Ireland. VII. 1921–84 (Oxford 2004). He also published monographs on the artists Micheal (Michael) Farrell and Carmel Mooney.

Although his flair for teaching and disputation was celebrated on campus, Barrett, like many old‐style academics, lacked administrative aptitude and in his later years at Warwick he was irritated by the increasing bureaucratisation and quantification of higher education. In 1992 he retired from Warwick to Campion Hall, the Jesuit college at Oxford, where he organised an exhibition of its art holdings, used the Latin‐language procedure in applying for a Bodleian reader’s ticket, and was a frequent visitor to the rival Dominican hall, Blackfriars. At Campion Hall he continued to work as a tutor, though he maintained that leisure (expansively defined as ‘life lived to its fullest’) was the proper end of human life and the proper state of mankind; he devoted as much time to it as possible.

He was a world traveller (wont to describe some of the ricketier charter planes he encountered as ‘Holy Ghost Airlines’), a gourmet cook who loved to entertain guests, a convivial drinker, and fond of betting on horseraces; he regularly attended the Merriman summer school in Co. Clare with his friend the broadcaster Seán Mac Réamoinn (1921–2007). He was a voluble critic of the provisional IRA. At the time of his death he was working on an analysis of the morality of war (he was always critical of the view that a just cause justified any means), a philosophical autobiography My struggles with philosophy, and a revision of the Spiritual exercises of St Ignatius Loyola. He also wrote poetry inspired by his reactions to the cancer which was killing him. Cyril Barrett died in Dublin on 30 December 2003.

Ir. Times, 10 Jan. 2004; Times (London), 15 Jan. 2004; Independent (London), 25 Feb. 2004; https://warwick.ac.uk/services/art/teachinglearningandresearch/onlineexhibitions/cyrilbarrett/

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 123 : Special Issue February 2005

Obituary

Fr Cyril D Barrett (1925-2003)

May 9th 1925: Born in Dublin
Early education at Kiliashee, Naas, Co.Kildare, Ampleforth College, Yorks. and Clongowes
Sept. 7th 1942: Entered the Society at Emo
Sept. 8th 1944: First Vows at Emo
1944 - 1947: Studied Arts at UCD
1947 - 1950: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1950 - 1953: Clongowes - Prefect and Teacher
1953 - 1957: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
July 31st 1956: Ordained at Milltown Park
1957 - 1958: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1958 - 1959: Leeson Street - Minister, Asst. Editor Studies
1959 - 1960: Tullabeg - Prof. Psychology; Subminister
Feb. 2nd 1960: Final Vows
1960 - 1961: Tullabeg -Prof. Psychology; Minister
1961 - 1964: London - Postgraduate Studies (History of Philosophy), London University (PhD)
1964 - 1965: Chantilly, France - Lecturer in Philosophy
1965 - 1966: Warwick University - Lecturer in Philosophy
1966 - 2003: Milltown Park
1966 - 1967: Dean of Philosophy; Prof. Philosophy at MI
1967 - 1972: Senior Lecturer in Philosophy - Warwick U.; Reader / Visiting Lecturer - Milltown Institute
1972 - 1992: University of Warwick - Reader in Philosophy
1992 - 2002: Oxford - Tutor in Philosophy
2002 - 2003: Milltown Park - writer
Dec. 30th 2003: Died at Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin.

Fr. Barrett was diagnosed as suffering from cancer in Autumn 2003. Despite a brief remission his health deteriorated steadily. He was admitted to Cherryfield Lodge on Christmas Day. There he died on the morning of Dec. 30th 2003.

Obituary from Times of London, January 15, 2004:

Dinner with Father Cyril Barrett - and you would dine well with this accomplished cook, even if in somewhat chaotic surroundings – was an intellectual feast composed of unpredictable ingredients. A man of huge charm, voracious curiosity and lively humour, he made an open house of his great learning. It was a place that offered inspiration and discovery to those who stepped across its threshold, at the University of Warwick where he taught philosophy for nearly three decades, in Dublin and London, or on his adventurous travels on a Jesuitical shoestring. (Holy Ghost Airlines, he would joke about the dodgier charter flights to dodgy destinations.) As an experimental new university in the mid-Sixties, Warwick attracted, and was attracted by, his interdisciplinary and questing cast of mind. Barrett was as authoritative on Op Art as he was on Wittgenstein's aesthetics.

Inducted almost straight from school into the Society of Jesus but, wisely, given free rein to pursue his strong academic vocation, Cyril Barrett found his reference points as writer, critic and lecturer in philosophy, aesthetics and a lifelong engagement with religious meaning; but he branched outward in multiple directions. He could discourse as intriguingly on hot racing tips, the samizdat blue films circulating in Cold War Central Europe (about which he was alarmingly well informed), kitsch or even knitting, as he talked about medieval aesthetics, Kierkegaard or Picasso. The most unclerical of priests, his faith was deep yet never unquestioning, just as the intellect that made him a renowned philosopher and art critic was tempered by the intensity of his inner spiritual dialogue.

Denis Cyril Barrett was born in 1925 in Dublin, to the sort of horse-and-hounds family that throws up, as it did with his great-uncle Cyril Corbally, such eccentric luminaries as champion croquet players. But this was independence-era Dublin, with its charged politics. His father Denis, the last Assistant Commissioner of the pre-1922 Dublin Metropolitan Police and the first of the Garda Siochana that replaced it, was to resign out of disgust with de Valera's brand of nationalism and the virulence of the IRA – a disgust always shared by his son. His mother died when he was three, and he was brought up by his adored stepmother Evelyn.

His early trajectory was conventional, from Ampleforth to a first in History and Latin at University College, Dublin, and thence to licenciates both in philosophy and in theology before ordination. How little these disciplines were to confine him was demonstrated by his doctorate, on symbolism in the arts, and a subsequent year studying anthropology and the role of myth at University College, London and the Warburg Institute, His large body of books and essays was to be almost equally devoted to modern art --- where his influence was enormous and Europe wide -- and to philosophical studies.

As a philosopher, Barrett became celebrated for publishing, in 1966, a selection of student notes of Wittgenstein's lectures and conversations on aesthetics, psychology and religious belief -- a small corpus out of which has developed a massive secondary literature and which has profoundly influenced aesthetics and theology. All his formidable persuasive skills were put to the test in gaining the consent of the notoriously possessive executors; Wittgenstein declared that "only aesthetic and conceptual questions” really gripped him, but without the Barrett enterprise, few would have known for many years of his grapplings with the former, or indeed with religion.

A quarter of a century later he gave his own considered account of Wittgenstein on ethics and religious belief, arguing that his views on value developed but did not change. Wittgenstein, he maintained, held that seeking to inculcate moral principles, and teaching religion in propositional form, is contrary to the true nature of ethics and religious belief - a position he endorsed. But he resisted the influential misinterpretation according to which Wittgenstein held religious belief to be nothing more than a way of life according to a picture. Belief is involved. The “picture” of Judgment Day is more than a mere picture or exemplar; it is a picture to live by, and there are better and worse such pictures; Wittgenstein “was no more a relativist than any reasonable person can avoid being”.

While never a Wittgensteinian, and indeed hostile to the notion of philosophical discipleship, he certainly learnt from him, and in aesthetics this influence came out in at least two ways. First, in his preference for tackling particular problems and clarifying ideas, over constructing elaborate theories, and secondly in his engagement with the interconnections between aesthetics and psychology, expressed most notably in his pioneering work popularising and explaining Op Art, both in books and by organising exhibitions. As an art critic he was wide-ranging and formidable -- his catalogue of 19th-century Irish Victorian Art is a classic of its kind - but also creative. He was a driving force in establishing Warwick University's art collection, and in cultivating understanding of modern art in Ireland. “Are bad works of art ‘works of art’?”, he asked in an influential essay; his suitably nuanced answer was that they may well be.

Jesuits, avowedly and by direction, are deeply involved in the world's affairs - and the greatest of them are mavericks. To someone of Barrett's catholic interests, impatience of convention and detestation of intellectual narrowness, Catholicism can be a hard master. Like many Jesuits down the centuries, Barrett made no attempt to disguise his chafing at the Vatican's hierarchical politics and social conservatism - going so far as to declare on the day of the attempted assassination of the Pope, in a bellow that filled a London restaurant, that “the only thing wrong with that bloody Turk was that he couldn't shoot straight”. The religious affairs correspondent of The Sunday Times, seated at a nearby table, turned beetroot.

Yet Barrett could readily assume his priestly guise and, in that capacity, was a compassionate and subtle counsellor and eminently practical moralist, ultimately convinced of the intelligence as well as the goodness of the Holy Spirit and able to instil that belief in others.

Academic politics bored Barrett at least as much as the priestly variety, and the world of league tables, research assessments and other bureaucratic rigidities even more. He left Warwick in 1992 for Campion Hall, Oxford, with some relief, striding into the Bodleian and demanding (successfully) to use the Latin language procedure for registering for a reader's ticket,

He continued writing to the very end of his life, back in Dublin, and was working in the last weeks on books and articles ranging from the morality of war to the limits of science, as well as writing poetry and rewriting the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius. Barrett would, however, have described this as the pursuit of leisure, which for him was “not a trivial pursuit”, and nothing to do with idleness, but, rather, “life lived to its fullest”.

Work was necessary for survival, he wrote, but “It is not an end in itself. Leisure is. It is the end, the goal, of human life, the proper state of man” -- which is why the quality of leisure matters. There are echoes here of Aristotle, even of St Augustine's idea of entering the holy Sabbath of God. But Cyril Barrett's genius was to draw the classical forward into the present; to cite one of his aphorisms, “philosophy may be perennial, but it is not static”.

Barry, Brendan, 1920-1972, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/60
  • Person
  • 09 May 1920-30 January 1972

Born: 09 May 1920, Limerick City
Entered: 07 September 1937, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1950, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1955, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 30 January 1972, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

Father Provincial of the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus, 5 August 1965-24 July 1968.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 34th Year No 4 1959

GENERAL
On 17th June Very Reverend Fr. General appointed Fr. Brendan Barry as Socius to Fr. Provincial in succession to Father John Coyne. Thus came to an end a term of office which had lasted for nearly a quarter of a century. This surely must be an easy record. Many members of the Province had known no other Socius and some of the younger generation might not have been able to name any of Fr. Coyne's predecessors. Provincials might come and go but Fr. Coyne remained, an abiding element in a changing world. In all, he worked under four Provincials; Fr. Kieran, during whose period of office he became Socius (22nd February, 1935), Fr. J. R. MacMahon, Fr. T. Byrne and Fr. M. O’Grady. On more than one occasion he deputised as Vice-Provincial. He had come to be regarded as an almost indispensable appendage of government, and then in June the appointment of a new Fr. Socius came as a reminder that even Socii are, after all, subject to the law of mutability.
At the celebration of his golden jubilee in 1956, Fr. Coyne said that his career in the Society had been a series of false starts and changes of direction. But these seemingly false starts, his interrupted classical studies, his years as Substitute to the English Assistant, as Rector of Belvedere and as Master of Novices were preparing him for what was to be the great work of his life. These experiences gave him an understanding of the day-to-day business of the government of the Society and of individual houses, and, of course, his impeccable Latin prose and mastery of curial style. At the same jubilee celebrations the Provincial for the time being and two former Provincials paid tribute to his skill in the dispatch of business, his loyalty, generosity and other personal qualities. To these the Province may add: his courtesy, tact, sympathy and good sense. The timid or diffident who considered a personal interview with Fr. Provincial too formidable found in Fr. Coyne the perfect intermediary. To all who had permissions to ask or MSS. for censorship or other small business to transact he was always approachable and gracious. The province takes this opportunity of thanking him and of expressing its admiration, not to say amazement, at the cheerfulness with which year after year he went about the infinity of his important but monotonous tasks. It also extends a warm welcome to Fr. Barry in his new work.

Irish Province News 47th Year No 2 1972
Obituary :
Fr Brendan Barry SJ (1920-1972)
Father Brendan Barry was born in St John's Parish, Limerick, on May 9th, 1920. He was an only child. His early schooling was at the Christian Brothers in Roxboro Road. At the age of twelve, he was sent to the Augustinian College, Dungarvan, as a boarder. However, after two years absence, he continued his secondary education with the Christian Brothers, Limerick. While there, he made a Retreat under the direction of Fr Ernest Mackey and one result of this was that he entered the novitiate at St. Mary's, Emo, on 7th September. There were in all nineteen novices in his year, of whom fourteen were subsequently ordained priests. He took his first vows on September 8th, 1939, a few days after World War II had erupted. For the next six years he lived in communities of scholastics who varied in number between forty-four and fifty-one. The years 1939-42 were spent at Rathfarnham where after three years study he took his BA degree with honours in English and and Latin. The next three years were spent at Tullabeg where he studied Philosophy.
Those who knew him in these early years remember him as a quiet, reserved, cheerful and occasionally gay young man who, like everyone else, accepted philosophically the small privations and restrictions which World War II made inevitable. During these years, his intellectual gifts were slowly revealed and his zeal was manifested in his work for the Men's Sodality, then attached to the People's Church. Two years of Regency, 1945-47, followed. These two years at Belvedere were years that lived in his memory. In later times, he often spoke of them with real affection. The value of Regency in bringing a scholastic to full maturity was manifest in his case. From now on it became increasingly difficult for him to hide his gifts. What was hitherto known to a few, now became common knowledge; he was a religious of regular observance, of unostentatious piety, of dedicated attention to the work he was given to do: teaching, prefecting or refereeing rugby football. He did all these things well, and, while he particularly enjoyed the company of his fellow scholastics, he became and always remained a good “community man”.
Such was the reputation he brought with him to Milltown Park in the Autumn of 1947; and meeting him there for the first time, I came to appreciate his quiet strength of character, his invariably cheerful disposition and his dedication to the work in hand. One of his Professors at that time described him as “a gifted student” and he passed his Ad Gradum examination in 1961 after 4 years of consistent application to his studies. As he had little interest in organised games, he found his relaxation in walking and swimming; and from this period dates his long association with the “Forty Foot” Swimming Club. His administrative gifts became apparent at this time and his appointment as Beadle of the Theologians caused no surprise. On July 31st, 1950, he was ordained priest by the Archbishop of Dublin, Dr. John Charles McQuaid, of whose policies and plans Fr Brendan was, in future years, to be such a stout defender and champion. His relationship with the Archbishop, which was at first necessarily indefinite, became in time confidential and and intimate. It was founded on the same virtue of Faith which in later years made him, what he sometimes jokingly called, “a Pope's man”.
Now this aspect of Fr Brendan's outlook was derived from his understanding of the mind of St Ignatius in founding the Society and in placing it at the service of the Church and of the Pope. In a letter to the Province in 1967, he wrote: “It is obvious our ministries will not be renewed without internal renewal, without a deep knowledge of the Ignatian idea of our vocation ... To develop (this) in ourselves we need to study the person and writings of St. Ignatius - in his autobiography and his letters, in the Constitutions and in the Spiritual Exercises ... This will ensure great co-operation among ourselves, with the diocesan clergy and the hierarchy, with other religious and with the laity ...” This letter, so full of high ideals and sane ideas, mirrors, as do few other things he wrote, the spirit of faith in the Church and in the Society which was so characteristic of him. He never saw the Society, which he loved dearly, as an end in itself, only as a means; never as master, but always as a servant at the disposal of the Pope and the Bishops and of the People of God. His faith in the Pope and the Bishops as successors of Peter and his fellow Apostles and as divinely ordained teachers and rulers of the Church, never wavered. And he saw the role of the Society in the Church to-day as being loyally and fully supportive of papal teaching and policy, in every field and in every detail, in every place and at all times. Much prayer and study, much discernment and self-discipline led him to lay aside all private judgment and “to obey in all things the true spouse of Christ our Lord, the Hierarchical Church”.
During 1952-53, he made his Tertianship under his former Master of Novices, Fr John Neary. He welcomed this opportunity to deepen his understanding of the Institute of the Society and of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius. This understanding was to serve him well when he was elected as a delegate to the General Congregation in 1965. He attended both sessions of this Congregation, during the first of which, he was appointed Provincial of the Irish Province, an appointment which was announced on August 5th, 1965. To this office he brought the fruits of thirteen years of varied administrative experience, a year as Minister in Galway, followed by four years as Minister in Milltown Park. In 1952, he was appointed Superior and Bursar of the Apostolic School at Mungret College. In the early summer of 1959, his appointment as Socius to : Fr Michael O'Grady was announced. He continued on as Socius to Fr Charles O'Conor on his becoming Provincial in July, 1959. Fr O'Conor recalls those days: “Although Fr Barry had already been a member of the Province for over twenty years, it was not until 1959 that our paths first crossed, One afternoon towards the end of May of that year, we found ourselves leaving Eglinton Road together armed with the knowledge that we were to be Provincial and Socius in the near future. We were both wondering, no doubt, how this hitherto unforeseen alliance would work out. In the sequel it fared very well. Once the initial stages had been passed, we found ourselves firm friends and remained so ever since”.
In ordinary circumstances, it could have been expected that he would remain as Socius for a longer term. Apart from this being a tradition in the Province, Fr Brendan brought to this Office a knowledge and love of the Institute and an administrative capacity and experience of a high order. But it was not to be. Indeed, as subsequent events will show, the fragmentary nature of his apostolate was to continue throughout his entire career. In the summer of 1962, he was appointed Rector of Milltown Park in succession to Fr James Corboy. Thus, after an absence of four years, he returned to a house where almost a third of his religious life in fact was spent, In August 1965, his “apprenticeship” being completed, he crossed over the Milltown Road to take up residence in 85 Eglinton Road as Provincial. During his three years in this office he was responsible for many initiatives. In his anxiety to get the best advice on many, difficult problems, he set up the following : the Commission for Studies and Training of Ours; the Commission on Ministries, the Social Survey; the Man-Power Planning Commission; the Commission on our Brothers; the Advisory Committee on Comprehensive Schools. He saw clearly that, in regard to our apostolic works and the manner in which we conducted them, it was vital that we recognise that we were living in a world of rapid and profound changes and that we be ready to adapt our ministries and methods to meet these changes. In this connection, too, he stressed the value of community discussions on all our problems, local and provincial, for he saw that it was necessary not only to arrive at the correct solutions, but also to enlighten one another about the reasons for consequent changes. He knew that such discussions involved “self-denial in working together at a common task” but he also knew that they were, today, recommended to us all both by the Church and by the Society. His, too, was the final decision to build a new Retreat House with a Circular Chapel at Manresa, Dollymount. During his years as Provincial, he visited our Mission in Zambia and concluded a friendly pact with the newly independent Vice-Province of Hong Kong. Among the many assessments of his work in the Province up to this point, the following by his former Provincial and life-long friend, Fr John R MacMahon, summarizes what many members of the Province should like to say: “In a way I knew him well. As my Minister in Milltown, as my Rector there and as Provincial, he impressed me as being a loyal and efficient assistant, a prudent and kindly Superior and as a courageous and faithful ruler. I refrain from using superlatives, though they are richly deserved. If I wanted an ‘Imago optimi Superioris’, I would find it in him”.
Now, looking back over his life, I am of the opinion that if he was drawn to one Jesuit ministry more than another, it was to the giving of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius to priests, religious and to the People of God. As Minister and Rector of Milltown, he gave many a week-end Retreat. As Provincial he encouraged the holding of Seminars and other meetings for those engaged in this ministry. In his letter of September 1967, he urged Retreat-Directors not to spare themselves in trying to think themselves into the minds of retreatants, giving what is most suitable to young and old alike. It was fitting, then, when he was relieved of the responsibility for the whole Province, that he should, after a brief period as Minister and Bursar in the College of Industrial Relations, spend what were in fact to be his last years as a director of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius. In this miniştry, he excelled, and he ran by faith to this work of bringing Christian life and hope to dead and despairing men and women, Between July 1969, and January 1972, a period of two and a half years, he directed three Retreats of 30 days-two to students at Clonliffe and one to the Religious of Jesus and Mary, Gortnor Abbey..seventeen eight-day retreats, seven six-day retreats, twenty tridua, several days of recollection, and one Novena of Grace. Right up to the end his one anxiety was that he would not have enough to do. His programme for 1972 already included six retreats in succession, between June and July, followed by a 30 day retreat in August and another in September October. He was booked, also, to give a third 30 day retreat to Loreto Nuns in Johannesburg, South Africa in December next. In all this, he felt confidently prepared; and how well prepared he was, is attested by tributes from religious in all parts of the country and of England.
The following will suffice as being typical of all: “I know that many of our sisters valued his personal direction and advice. I have been very much struck by the fact that he is so much regretted by
people of such different age-groups and of widely different views. He, undoubtedly, understood the young and was greatly trusted by them. They valued his honesty and appreciated especially his wide knowledge of Council documents. But, I think that he will be best remembered in our Irish Province for his retreats. In particular, I have heard many sisters mention a Superior's retreat which he directed, based on the Gospel of St. John, and, as he changed his retreat so often, this may not be the one you know. Every Sister I met who made that retreat has spoken of it as an exceptional spiritual experience”.
Before concluding this notice, it will be of interest to have a record of some of the judgments passed on his life and work by ours and by others for whom he worked. The following are typical examples : “Brendan was by disposition undemonstrative and retiring but he was incisive in his assessments of people and situations. He was most conscientious in regard to his work and very loyal to his friends. He could be sensitive in some matters and wonderfully resilient in others”. “He was somewhat reserved and he did not wear his heart upon his sleeve. But, there was no doubt about the depth of his sincerity and I looked on him as a true friend on whose sympathy and solid help I could rely. This may seem too formal, even frigid. It may give a false impression. Perhaps, I, too, don't wear my heart on my sleeve”. “I was always impressed by his great sincerity, by his balanced judgment, by his generous and completely detached spirit of service, by his simplicity, his kindly tolerance and his sense of humour”. “His was a sane and balanced approach, in his own homely style, he flavoured his talks with his own dry humour, e.g. ‘the modem superior can't be remote. If he is remote, they write him off! If he is not remote, his personal faults stand out - the boys know!’” “We have lost in Fr Barry a dedicated friend, an enlightened spiritual guide, whose humility and limpid sincerity were notable characteristics of his personality”.
For myself, in the quarter of a century that I have known him, I had come to see his fine physical stature as a living symbol of the greatness of his mind and heart. He had a mind that could go to the heart of any question and his judgments of men and affairs were rarely wrong. While he did not suffer fools gladly, he did feel and sympathised with the failures and follies of his fellow men. He was less interested in condemning a man than in seeking a practical solution to his problems. He was loyal to commitments and to persons. He was not a respecter of persons and friendship for him never degenerated into favouritism. He was, in truth, detached even from his friends. Though like most men, he had need of friends, in whose company he could relax and come out of himself and relieve the inner loneliness that dwells in the heart of every man. This loneliness is said to be more keenly felt by those whose ministry separates them from community life. In the last few years, Fr Brendan was always happy to return from his frequent ‘missionary expeditions to the Community at “35”, where he found a homely welcome and congenial company. The knowledge of this was not the least of this Community's consolations at the time of his sudden death at the comparatively early age of 52. The Irish Province has lost one of its really great men; his spiritual children have lost a sympathetic guide and his friends everywhere a man whose judgment and companionship were a source of encouragement and strength. May he rest in peace.

An appreciation by Most Reverend Dr. Joseph A. Carroll, President of Holy Cross College, Clonliffe
It is no easy tasks nowadays to give the Thirty Days Retreat. The classic material has to be adapted to the new mentality and up dated in accordance with the new insights in Sacred Scripture and Theology. It is as true as ever that the success of the Retreat de pends to a large extent, under God, on the qualities of the Director. Young people to-day are not particularly impressed with a man's erudition nor even with his eloquence. What they look for and are quick to recognise is his sincerity. Father Brendan was both erudite and eloquent but his outstanding quality, as we saw him, was hs sincerity. It was patent to all. When one adds to this an immense patience and capacity for listening, a complete dedication to the task, a large fund of common sense and a keen sense of humour, one begins to understand how the Thirty Days Retreat that could so easily be a burden was not simply tolerable but decidedly acceptable to our Second Year students. I have a distinct recollection of meeting one of them during the Retreat last year and asking him how things were going. “Father Barry”, he said “is terrific”. The fact that they asked him to return on more than one occasion to give a Day of Recollection is a measure of their appreciation. He will be greatly missed in the College. With his unassuming manner and the twinkling bashful smile he had won the affection of the Staff. We always welcomed him as an amiable companion during the Thirty Days he spent with us each year. May he rest in peace.

NB - Members of the Province may not have known that Father Brendan was on the staff of the Mater Dei Institute of Education, He gave occasional lectures to the students there on the spiritual life. Right up to his death, he frequently offered Mass in the Oratory of the Institute and preached a homily. The Director of the Institute, Father Patrick Wallace in the course of a recent letter writes: “To the students of the Mater Dei Institute Father Brendan Barry, SJ, was a man of God. He spoke so convincingly of the need for prayer, he treated every problem so calmly, he showed such respect for everyone who met him that one had to conclude that here was a man who had a deep experience of God in his own prayer life, who had received God's guidance in tackling the problems life had posed for him, who had reached the heights of appreciating the dignity of every man as a brother in Christ. In the homily delivered at the Requiem Mass in the Institute the celebrant spoke for us all when he said 'while we mourn the loss of Father Barry we rejoice that through him the Spirit of Christ was visibly active among us for so long'. The above sentiments are genuinely the sentiments of the students and the staff”.

Barry, James, 1925-2002, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/555
  • Person
  • 23 July 1925-27 November 2002

Born: 23 July 1925, Mallow, County Cork
Entered: 11 March 1944, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Final Vows: 15 August 1955, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Died: 27 November 2002, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 117 : Special Issue November 2003

Obituary

Br James (Jim) Barry (1925-2002)

23rd July 1925: Born in Mallow, Co. Cork
Early education in St Peter's, Bray, and Presentation College, Bray
11 March 1944: Entered the Society at Emo
12th March 1946: First Vows at Emo
1946 - 1956: Emo- Gardening.
15h August 1955: Final Vows
1956 - 1958: Milltown Park - Gardening, Farming
1958 - 1964: Clongowes - Supervisor of Staff
1964 - 1965: St. Ignatius, Galway - Supervisor of Staff.
1965 - 1974: Catholic Workers College - Assisted in the Community
1974 - 1975: Crescent/Mungret - arranging for closing down of school buildings
1975 - 1991: Gonzaga College - Supervisor in College; Sacristan
1991 - 2002: Leeson Street -
1991 - 1997: Minister; Assistant Treasurer
1997 - 2002: Minister; Assistant Treasurer; Health Prefect

Following several months of concern about his health among members of his community, Jim was prevailed upon to go to Cherryfield for a rest on 25th October, 2002. He was transferred to St. Vincent's Private Hospital for tests on 4th November, where he was diagnosed as having an advanced form of lung cancer. He was half-way through a course of radium treatment, when his condition deteriorated suddenly on the evening of Sunday, 24 November, and he was found to have contracted pneumonia. That night, and during the following day, he experienced periods of distress, but on Tuesday he became more comfortable, and slipped into a coma. He died peacefully on Wednesday, 27" November, at about 7.30 p.m.

Fergus O'Keefe writes:
Jim Barry may have been born in North Cork but his first years were spent in West Cork. His father lived and worked in Timoleague. Jim always identified with his native county's successes in hurling and gaelic football. The family moved to Bray, where he received his early education. He always remained close to his family and was a regular visitor to his brother's and sister's homes in Bray. One nephew, Oliver Barry, an Oblate, is a parish priest in England.

Jim spent thirteen years in Emo as postulant, novice, refectorian and gardener. He had a powerful physique, tall, spare and strong. A novice on experiment in those days tells of being put standing on the head of the refectory squeegee, already weighted with lumps of lead, while Jim hauled it to and fro to bring up the shine on the waxed floor. He had a droll sense of humour, asking another novice, “Do you know how to play darts?" "Then dart down there with some plates.” At harvest time when all hands used be called to the farmyard to help, Jim was to be seen heaving huge sacks of grain effortlessly from the threshing machine to the waiting trailer. When the novices, teenage townies most of them, would begin to wilt, Jim would spur them on with an encouraging word and that memorable basso-profundo chuckle that seemed to rumble up from his boots. He was a faithful supporter of the local Emo footballers and would often travel to matches or to Croke Park with them.

For ten years (1946-1956) Jim worked in the walled garden at Emo with John Treacy who had worked there in earlier times under the head-gardener, Dan Deegan. Dan could remember the Earl of Portarlington on horseback marking out with canes the spots where the Wellingtonia avenue saplings were to be planted. John used to speak, engagingly, of “the Lord's time”. Years later when Jim was in Dublin the papers carried a death notice for a John Treacy in Emo. Several members of the Province travelled to Emo for the funeral, only to discover that retired gardener John was in attendance, too. Next time the canny Jim was visiting Emo, John chided him, “You never came to my funeral!”

After two years spent in the garden and on the farm at Milltown Park, Jim was appointed to Clongowes. From 1958 to 1964 he had charge of the many staff there, skilled and unskilled. Most of the refectory and cleaning staff then were young lads who lived on the premises. Jim's room adjoined their dormitory (now the SRPA loft) and he would have had them into work by 6 a.m. In those days there were no summer projects, as now, when staff could be retained and gainfully employed while school was out. Instead Jim organised ambitious schemes, joining in the work - and the fun - himself. One year it was all hands on deck to rip up the worn-out wooden floorboards of the boys' refectory. Dry fill was wheel-barrowed in, concrete poured and skimmed, tiles laid and sealed – a perfect finish, still good to this day. In the course of another summer, indoor and outdoor staffs combined to surface the entire length of the side avenue, boiling the tar, spreading it, coating it with limestone chippings and rolling it, proud as punch and enjoying themselves in the summer sunshine under Jim's genial supervision.

A year in Galway was followed by nine assisting in the community at the Catholic Workers College. Changes of Jesuit personnel and policy in what became the College of Industrial Relations did not affect Jim greatly and he always seemed content there, getting on well with community, staff and students alike.

In 1974 he was chosen for a daunting task - to assist Fr Scan McCarron in closing down Mungret College, disposing of furniture, etc. One morning Sean failed to turn up for Mass. Jim went to his room and found him dead. Being on his own after that, he was anxious about security; so he spread the rumour among the locals that the college was haunted. If Jim was to be believed (frequently problematic – Jim was a past master at 'codding', the national pastime), the rumour was not unfounded. One night the remains of several Jesuits that had been exhumed from a small burial plot close to the school were being held on the premises in readiness for reinterment next day in the enlarged Jesuit plot in the old Mungret Abbey cemetery. As Jim told it, Sean and himself were wakened in the middle of that same night by persistent ringing on the door bell.

Except for that year in Mungret, from 1964 on Jim was to then spend thirty-six years in Dublin. In those days he was a familiar, if incongruous, sight setting off to visit family in Bray, this gentle giant on his wee Honda 50. There was a touch of bravado about his regular trips to the Forty Foot for the Christmas Day swim and many an afternoon in between, wrapped only in a faded gaberdene. No leathers for Jim! No persuading him to invest in a bigger bike. He had always tried to save money wherever he had worked; so he was never going to start spending on himself.

As part of the administrative team at Gonzaga (1975 1991), Jim was, as one colleague recalls, "very dependable, a great companion." He related well with staff, treating all with respect and good humour. Some became his friends for life. Standards of maintenance, decoration and cleanliness improved greatly under his leadership. With the proliferation of prefabs, so difficult to keep clean, Gonzaga, of all places, had become a bit of a slum. Jim and his staff were happy to see the end of them. He coped well with two successive sets of contractors, come on site to build, first, the eight-classroom block and, later, the science building. With his keen eye for good workers, he spotted a likely candidate for groundsman in the foreman on the latter building. Typical of Jim's tongue-in-cheek humour was his instruction, to the consternation of the same groundsman, that the great purple beech on the front lawn, the glory of the college grounds, would have to come down. Needless to say, it is still standing, as magnificent as ever.

Those were happy years for Jim. The boys used to crowd into his little office at breaks to join in the craic. He shared their enthusiasms, especially for sport. The boys were fond of him - he was a ready and sympathetic listener. In his own schooldays at Presentation College, Bray, he had been known to take a penalty at soccer with such force that it carried both ball and goalie to the back of the net. His rugby loyalties were divided between Gonzaga and Pres Bray, where a nephew was on the cup team. Jim supported winners and was annoyed when Gonzaga let the Senior Cup slip out of their grasp in the semi final. He switched allegiance to Liverpool at a time when they were on the up-and-up in the League.

It was the same when Jim went to the races. He always seemed to back winners; at least, the community never heard of him losing. He loved horses and claimed to be able to spot the winner by “the glint in the eye”. Even for years after Jim had left Gonzaga, appreciative parents would present him with an annual pass to the enclosure at Leopardstown Racecourse. At the races past students would gather round as soon as they saw him. At Jim's funeral the mother of a past Gonzagan spoke of him as “a dote”. She recalled that whenever the parents were organising a function he would welcome them with a warm smile and would have everything they needed set out for them.

Sadly, in latter years Jim seemed to lack the energy to attend race meetings. His years at Leeson St (1991-2002) were dogged by ill-health, yet he was determined to carry out to the full all his tasks as Minister, Assistant Treasurer and Health Prefect. His total dedication, even when his energies were fading, was remarkable. Rather than look for help, he would still try to do everything himself, even when he was no longer able. His feet gave him trouble; he couldn't walk or stand for any length of time. His prayer-life was undemonstrative. Every morning he would spend half-an-hour in the community oratory and again ten minutes at night.

Over his last few weeks at St. Vincent's Private Hospital his sheer goodness made a deep impression on the staff there. Despite his suffering and weakness he was totally undemanding, He never once rang the bell for assistance. Most of all, the nurses loved his smile, bashful maybe, but always warm. The only word his friend Fr Todd Morrissey heard him say was “Tough going”.

-oOo-

In the November issue of the Messenger, Paul Andrews writes of Jim: “Fifteen years ago he was operated on for cancer, something went wrong, and he was at the point of death. Later he told me about the day of extreme crisis. Though apparently unconscious, he was aware of a sense of foreboding around his hospital bed, and he felt his body in terrible shape while medics worked feverishly to keep him alive. Then Jim's mind withdrew from the body, and he remembers moving across a bridge towards a bright, beautiful place on the other side. He was happy, buoyed up by a feeling of joy and anticipation. Round the middle of the bridge the joy was interrupted. People were pulling him back, and when he came to himself he was, sadly, in the hospital bed, in a painfully sick body, disappointed and rather angry at being hauled back from happiness. For the next fourteen years he laboured in an increasingly sick body, and was noted for his tender care of sick people. Perhaps he could convey to those who were facing the end, that there was a lot to look forward to, and that the last act of life is beautiful. When his final sickness overtook him, he went in extraordinary peace”.

Barry-Ryan, Kieran, 1929-2018, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/820
  • Person
  • 20 February 1929-17 November 2018

Born: 20 February 1929, Cappaghwhite, County Tipperary
Entered: 06 September 1947, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1960, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 02 February 1965, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 17 November 2018, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Francis Xavier's, Uper Gardiner Streey community at the time of death.

by 1950 at Laval, France (FRA) studying
by 1955 at Chikuni, Chisekesi, N Rhodesia (POL Mi) Regency
by 1971 at Coventry, England (ANG) working
by 2007 at Annerly, London (BRI) working
by 2011 at Beckenham, Kent (BRI) working

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/kieran-barry-ryan-sj-a-gifted-marriage-counsellor/

Kieran Barry-Ryan SJ: a gifted marriage counsellor
Fr Kieran Barry-Ryan SJ died peacefully after a short illness in St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin on Saturday, 17 November 2018 aged 89 years. His funeral took place in St Francis Xavier Church, Gardiner Street in Dublin on 20 November followed by burial in Glasnevin Cemetery.
Born in Cappaghwhite, County Tipperary, Fr Kieran was educated in Ireland and England before entering the Society of Jesus at St Mary’s, Emo, Country Laois in 1947. His Jesuit training included studies abroad in France and Zambia, and he was ordained at Milltown Park Chapel, Dublin in 1960.
As a Jesuit priest, Fr Kieran taught Religion at Bolton Street DIT in Dublin and was a member of the Gardiner Street community for many years. He was deeply involved in marriage and family ministry. He identified a great need for this work, helping to set up pre-marriage courses, writing the material for them, and training those who would give them.
Fr Kieran said that the most challenging part of marriage and family ministry was encouraging the trainers to reflect and draw on their own experience of faith and prayer. Rather than focusing simply on human development which had a strong gravitational pull for people, he helped to nourish and develop the religious heart of the sacrament of marriage.
He lived in England from 1997 to 2013 where he continued his popular pre-marriage courses. He became known as a wise and kind presence to the many couples and families who were referred to him. Later, he was a Chaplain to Emmaus Nursing Home in Kent, England.
The Irish Jesuit returned to Gardiner Street community in 2013 and spent his last four years in Cherryfield Lodge nursing home, Dublin where he prayed for the Church and the Society. He died in St Vincent’s Hospital while being surrounded by his family and friends.
Dr Chris Curran, who is working on the Loyola Institute initiative, was a friend who attended the funeral on 20 November. He remarked that Fr Kieran, fondly known as ‘Kerry’, was a person of good fun and laughter: a very good bridge player, a golfer, fluent in French, someone who worked very well with groups and who loved an argument.
“Kerry was a close family friend of very long standing”, said Dr Curran. “He was involved in the life of my family for many years where he officiated over the sacraments. He was dedicated and committed in particular to the marriage apostolate”.
Fr Kieran is sadly missed by his sisters Eileen Dooley, Wimbledon and Patricia MacCurtain, Jesuit confreres and friends. He is predeceased by his sister Maureen Lightburn. ‘Kerry’ was known to be a much loved brother, uncle, granduncle, priest and friend. He will be particularly remembered in Ireland, England and America.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

Early Education at St Augustine’s, Ramsgate; Downside School, Bath; College of Surgeons, Dublin
1949-1951 Laval, France - Juniorate
1951-1954 Tullabeg - Studying Philosophy
1954-1957 St Canisius College, Chikuni, Zambia - Regency : Teacher
1957-1961 Milltown Park - Studying Theology
1961-1962 Rathfarnham - Tertianship
1962 Teacher of Religion at Bolton St DIT, Dublin
1968-1970 Gardiner St - Assisting in Church; teaching at Bolton St
1971-1976 Leeson St - Director of Marriage Courses at CIR
1976-1997 Gardiner St - Assisting in Church; Marriage & Family Apostolate; Marriage Counselling & Courses
1988 Director of Church Apostolate
1991 Sabbatical
1997-2009 Annerley, London, England - Parish Work; Marriage and Family Apostolate at St Anthony of Padua Church
2009-2013 West Wickham, Kent, England - Chaplain to Emmaus Nursing Home
2013-2018 Gardiner St - Sabbatical
2014 Prays for the Church and the Society at Cherryfield Lodge

Bourke, Gerard, 1926-2017, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/812
  • Person
  • 17 January 1926-20 August 2017

Born: 17 January 1926, Ranelagh, Dublin
Entered: 14 September 1943, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1957, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 03 December 1981, Tokyo, Japan
Died: 20 August 2017, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin - Japanese Province (JPN)

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

Transcribed HIB to JPN : 16 December 1960

by 1952 at Eiko, Yokosuka-shi, Japan (JPN) studying
by 1959 at Hiroshima, Japan (JPN)

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/much-travelled-jesuit/

A much-travelled Jesuit
Irish Jesuit Fr Gerry Bourke SJ, who spent a good part of his Jesuit life in Japan, passed away on Sunday 20 August. He was aged 91 years. His funeral Mass took place in Milltown Park Chapel on Tuesday 22 August.
Fr Bourke SJ, a native of Ranelagh, Dublin, was a student in CBS Synge St. before he joined the Society in 1943. Shortly after his ordination in 1957, he joined the Japanese mission, and in 1960 he became formally a member of the Japanese Jesuit Province. After a short period as parish priest in Hiroshima, Gerry spent many years teaching in a Jesuit high school in Yokosuka, south of Tokyo. He left in 1971, and went to New York, and then to Hawaii, where he did academic and pastoral work. He returned to Japan in 1984, where he taught and ministered at Sophia University in Tokyo.
After another stint in Hawaii, Gerry returned to Ireland in 2001, and for much of the next decade was deeply immersed in Jesuit communications, particularly with the innovative and thriving apostolate of Sacred Space. He moved to Cherryfield Lodge nursing home in his native Ranelagh in 2013 where he settled in very well and appreciated all that was done for him. It was there that he passed away peacefully on Sunday 20 August.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

Early Education at CBS, Synge Street, Dublin
1945-1948 Rathfarnham - Studying Arts at UCD
1948-1951 Tullabeg - Studying Philosophy
1951-1954 Yokosuka, Japan - Regency : Learning Language; Teaching at Eiko Gakuen Jesuit High School
1954-1958 Milltown Park - Studying Theology
1958-1960 Hiroshima, Japan - Parish Priest at Gion Kioku kunai
1959 Tertianship at Hiroshima
1960-1971 Yokosuka - Teaching at Eiko Gakuen Jesuit High School
1971-1972 Fordham University, New York - Education Studies; Parish Ministry; Family Consultation Service
1972-1978 Riverdale, New York - Campus Ministry at College of Mount St Vincent
1974 Lecturer in Psychology at Mercy College, Dobbs Ferry New York
1978-1984 Honolulu, Hawaii - Superior at University of Hawaii Jesuit Community; Campus Ministry
1984-1991 Sophia University, Tokyo - Director of Counselling Institute; Lecturing in Psychology
1991-1996 Honolulu, Hawaii - Parish Ministry at St Anthony’s Church, Kailua
1993 Parish work at Star of the Sea Church, Honolulu
1994 Pastor at Sacred Heart Church, Pahoa
1995 Parish Administrator at St Ann’s Church. Maui
1996-1997 Manila, Philippines - Lecturing at East Asia Pastoral Institute
1997-2001 Farm St Church, London - Ministering to Japanese Community in London; Parish Staff
2001-2017 Leeson St - JCC; Sacred Space; Editor of “Latest Space” & “Interfuse
2003 Editor “Scared Space”
2014 Praying for Church and the Society at Cherryfield Lodge

Brennan, Martin, 1912-1999, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/475
  • Person
  • 04 December 1912-21 July 1999

Born: 04 December 1912, Dundrum, Dublin
Entered: 03 September 1930, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1945, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1948, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 21 July 1999, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

Uncle of Fergal Brennan - Ent 1959

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 105 : Special Edition 2000

Obituary

Fr Máirtín Ó Braonáin (1912-1999) : translation by Brian Grogan SJ

Martin's health began to decline in 1996 and he spent periods of time in Cherryfield, returning to Leeson Street as often as he could. Later, for health reasons, he remained permanently in Cherryfield. In the last couple of weeks his strength was fading and he died peacefully on Wednesday July 21st, 1999 in Cherryfield.

4th Dec. 1912: Born in Dublin.
Early education in Dundrum National School and CBS Synge Street
3rd Sept. 1930: Entered the Society at Emo.
4th Sept. 1932: First vows at Emo.
1932 - 1936: Rathfarnham- Arts Degree at UCD
1936 - 1939: Tullabeg- Philosophy studies.
1939 - 1942: Milltown- Science Degree at UCD
1942 - 1946: Milltown- Theology studies.
31st July 1945: Ordained priest at Milltown Park.
1947 - 1951: Leeson Street- Doctorate studies in Botany at UCD.
2nd Feb. 1948: Final Vows at Leeson Street.
1951 - 1981: Lecturer in Botany in UCD.
1981 - 1993: Lecturer Emeritus in Biology, writing and assisting in Sallynoggin parish.
1993 - 1996: Lecturer Emeritus in Biology, working in the Irish language apostolate and writing.
1997 - 1999: Moved to Cherryfield Lodge, praying for the Church and the Society.

Fr Proinnsias Ó Fionnagáin writes...

I remember the first time, in September 1932, when I met Máirtín as he arrived in Rathfarnham from Emo, Co Laois. The new scholastics were being welcomed and Máirtín responded to me in Irish. I am sure his companions knew the language but Máirtín was the only one willing to speak it spontaneously.
In the weeks that followed we had little opportunity to chat because I was weighed down with study for my BA exams. I did not see Máirtín again for six years, when we encountered one another in August 1938 in Milltown Park. I had completed regency in the colleges and about to begin theology, but there was a different agenda for Máirtín.

Máirtín did well in Rathfarnham but you would get little news of him in the Province News. However in Tullabeg, our House of Philosophy, we find that Máirtín had completed his studies with exceptional merit. At that time, Fr H. Schmitz, a German Jesuit, had come to Tullabeg to replace Fr Eddie Coyne, and tradition tells that Máirtín did so well in his classes that Fr Schmitz recommended that he be sent on for special studies in Botany. Whether this is true or false Mairtin spent four years, 1938-1942, in UCD studying for a degree in Botany and Zoology. Unsurprisingly this diligent student emerged with first honours and highest merit. Eventually Mairtin began theology (1942-46) and was overjoyed to be ordained a priest on St Ignatius’ Day, 31 July 1945; but his spiritual formation was not completed until summer 1947.

He then took up residence in St Ignatius House, Leeson St—his address till the end of his life. Again, more study followed for his doctorate, but in between we find him teaching Botany as assistant to the professor in UCD, and lecturing in science and religion to students in Earlsfort Terrace. In July 1952 he was awarded his doctorate.

What shall we relate of Dr Mairtin’s life-style in UCD from 1952? Certainly he was a conscientious lecturer who was never satisfied with his current level of knowledge. He was always studying, strengthening and deepening his knowledge in order to achieve excellence in what he taught. Almost every year in vacation time, he participated in learned conferences whether at home or internationally, especially in France, Germany and the US.

He gave many public lectures between 1952-70, on topics such as ‘Adam and Anthropology’, ‘The Catholic Student and the Problems of Evolution’ etc. From 1961 he gave lectures on the philosophy of the French Jesuit, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, in UCD, Maynooth, Galway and Cork. Some of these were published both in Irish and English. It is clear that over these years Mairtin was ceaselessly at work, not only in fulfilling his obligations as professor in the University, and in writing and lecturing. But there is more to the story! He never forgot his first love, the Irish language. No sooner had he completed his formation than he became a member of Cumann na Sagart and was later unanimously elected as its president. It gave him great joy to attend when the annual prize of the Cumann was bestowed on young people who had fostered "Glór na nGael" (The Irish Language). Frequently he travelled as Irish-speaking chaplain to Lourdes. I lived with him in Leeson St from 1961-74 and I often noticed Máirtín’s pleasure when someone spoke in Irish to him. As for myself I would break in on a conversation to ask if he could recall a verse from Tadhg Gaelach or Raifteri. Immediately he would respond with three or four of the required verses!

Maírtín retired from lecturing in October 1980 but he wasn’t seeking ‘ease with dignity’ although he had well earned the right to take life more easily. Soon he was made assistant priest in Sallynoggin, and was elected to membership of the Boards of Management for Irish-speaking schools in Rathcoole and Clondalkin. And he continued to work for our native language until his health no longer allowed him to continue his duties.

When I returned home from France in October 1981 I was delighted to see Máirtín again. He visited me in Gardiner St to discuss the history of the Jesuits in Ireland. I gathered that Mairtin had joined the Jesuits with a deep knowledge of the history of Ireland, learned from the Christian Brothers: now he was deepening his knowledge of the history of the Jesuits in Ireland. He was an independent thinker in regard to the history of Ireland. In his view, the Wild Geese should have stayed in Ireland after the Treaty of Limerick instead of going abroad to fight the battles of the kings of Europe: they could have engaged in guerrilla warfare with the English and their friends at home in Ireland!

God gave Máirtin a long span of life, and surely he was ready when the final notice to surrender came. Let us pray that he may soon experience the vision of the Holy Trinity, under the mantle of Mary our Glorious Mother. He died on July 21, 1999.

Good Jesus our Lord, give him eternal rest.

Proinsias O Fionnagáin, SJ

Translation Brian Grogan SJ

Browne, Henry Martyn, 1853-1941, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/72
  • Person
  • 07 August 1853-14 March 1941

Born: 07 August 1853, Birkenhead, Liverpool, Cheshire, England
Entered: 31 October 1877, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 22 September 1889, St Beuno's, Wales
Final Vows: 02 February 1897, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner St, Dublin
Died: 14 March 1941, St Beuno’s, Wales

Part of the Heythrop, Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, England community at the time of death

by 1888 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) studying
by 1895 at Roehampton London (ANG) making Tertianship
by 1923 at Campion House, Osterley, London (ANG) teaching
by 1927 at Mount St London (ANG) writing
by 1938 at Roehampton, London (ANG) writing
by 1941 at Heythrop, Oxfordshire, England (ANG) writing

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Browne, Henry Martyn
by Christina Souyoudzoglou-Haywood

Browne, Henry Martyn (1853–1941), classicist and Jesuit priest, was born 7 August 1853 in Claughton, Woodchurch, Cheshire, England, the second of four sons and one daughter of John Wilson Browne, hardware merchant, born in Portugal (1824), and Jane Susan Browne (née McKnight), one of eight children of Robert McKnight, farmer, and Jane McKnight (née McLean) from Kelton, Castle Douglas, Kirkcudbrightshire. Henry grew up in Birmingham, where his father set up in business. He lost his mother (d. 14 May 1859) when he was almost six; in 1862 his father married Agnes Bowstead and had another two children.

Brown was educated at King Edward's school, Birmingham, and in 1872 entered New College, Oxford, as a commoner. He took moderations in 1873, obtaining second-class honours in Greek and Latin literature, but left the university the following year, without taking his second public examination – he was granted a BA in 1891 (MA 1895) upon embarking on his academic career – having converted to the catholic faith and joined the Society of Jesus. He later gave an account of his conversion in The city of peace (1903). In 1877 he joined the Irish province and entered the novitiate at Milltown Park. He took his vows in 1879, remained for a year at Milltown Park as a junior, and taught at Tullabeg, Tullamore, Co. Offaly (1880–84). He was ordained in 1889 at St Beuno's, north Wales. Five years earlier he had begun a degree in theology at Milltown Park, which he completed in 1890. He was then appointed to teach classics at UCD, then run by the Jesuits, filling the post formerly held by Gerard Manley Hopkins (qv). During this period he published the Handbook of Greek composition (1885; 8th ed. 1921) and Handbook of Latin composition (1901; 2nd ed. 1907). At the founding of the NUI in 1908 he was appointed professor of Greek at UCD, a position he held until his retirement in 1922.

What characterised Browne's approach to classical scholarship was his interest in the ‘reality’ of the ancient world, which he tried to convey to students through visual and tactile materials (maps, lantern slides, photographs, artefacts, and replicas). He became an enthusiastic advocate of archaeology, and particularly of prehistoric archaeology. He gave public lectures on Minoan and Mycenaean archaeology and – a first for Ireland – he introduced these subjects into the university's syllabus. In his popular Handbook of Homeric study (1905; 2nd ed., 1908) he debated extensively the implications for Homeric studies of the recent archaeological discoveries in the eastern Mediterranean. His greatest legacy to UCD was the Museum of Ancient History (afterwards renamed the Classical Museum), inaugurated at Earlsfort Terrace in 1910. Browne built up his teaching collection of more than 5,000 Greek, Roman, and Egyptian antiquities, replicas, and coins through his personal contacts with archaeologists and museums in England, through purchases on the antiquities market – an important purchase being that of Greek vases at the Christie's sale of the Thomas Hope collection in 1917 – and through loans from the National Museum of Ireland. He became a member of the committee of the British Association for Museums, and chairman of the archaeological aids committee of the Association for the Reform of Latin Teaching. In this capacity he visited the USA in 1916 to inquire into the educational role of American museums, and included his observations in Our renaissance: essays on the reform and revival of classical studies (1917). His practical approach to the classics led him to experiment with Greek choral rhythms; he gave demonstrations at American universities, and regularly chanted Greek choral odes to his students. He had many extra-curricular interests. For several years he was in charge of the University Sodality. He played a major role in the foundation of the Classical Association of Ireland (he was its chairman in 1913) and served on the Council of Hellenic Studies. He was involved with the St Joseph's Young Priests Society and supported the work of the Mungret Apostolic School.

After his retirement from UCD Browne left Ireland, where he had resided at the Jesuit residence, 35 Lower Leeson Street, Dublin, and was transferred to London, first to Osterley, then Farm Street in Mayfair, and in 1939 to Manresa House, Roehampton. During this period of his life he channelled his energy to the study of the English martyrs, and to catechism and conversion. He wrote The catholic evidence movement (1924) and Darkness or light? An essay in the theory of divine contemplation (1925), and tried to improve the fate of the under-privileged youth of Hoxton by organising and running a boys’ club there. He returned to Dublin a few times, and he wrote with Father Lambert McKenna (qv) a history of UCD, A page of Irish history (1930). His last publication was A tragedy of Queen Elizabeth (1937).

Browne died 14 March 1941 at Heythrop College, near Oxford, where he was evacuated because of the air raids on London. His brothers, all heirless, continued the merchant tradition of the family. His sister, Lucy Jane, died in a Birmingham asylum in 1917. His half-brother Arthur Edward Wilson died in South Africa in 1941 where he lived with his wife and five children. Browne's correspondence relating to the UCD museum is in the British Museum, the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, Winchester College, and the NMI. Some papers are in the archives of the British Province, Mount Street, London. The whereabouts of a known portrait are uncertain; it was reproduced in his obituary in the magazine of the British Province with the caption ‘from a Dublin portrait’.

Browne family wills, inc. John Wilson Browne (1886) and Charles Knightly Browne (1926); census returns, United Kingdom, 1851 (Woodchurch, Birkkenhead), 1881 and 1891 (Solihull, Birmingham); ‘Browne, Henry Martyn’, New College, Oxford, Register for 1872; Oxford University Calendar, 1873, 1892, 1893; ‘The Cretan discoveries’, Freeman's Journal, 11 Feb., 17 Feb. 1905; National Museum of Ireland: letter books, 1910, 1912, 1914, 1915, 1917, 1918, 1921; University College Dublin: Calendar for . . . 1911–1912, 457–8; H. Browne, Museum of Ancient History: report, 1913 (1913); H. Browne, Museum of Ancient History: Report, 1914 (1915); H. Browne, Introduction to numismatics (1915); University College Dublin: Report of the President, 1922–1923, 3–4; Fathers of the Society of Jesus, A page of Irish history: story of University College Dublin, 1883–1909 (1930); ‘Obituary’, University College Dublin: Report of the President, 1940–1941, 16–17; ‘Obituary’, Irish Province News, iv (1941), 566–9; WWW; M. Tierney, Struggle with fortune: a miscellany for the centenary of the Catholic University of Ireland, 1854–1954 (1954), 37–8, 90; W. B. Stanford, Ireland and the classical tradition (1976), 65–6, 68–9, 168–9, 240; C. Haywood, The making of the classical museum: antiquarians, collectors and archaeologists. An exhibition of the Classical museum, 2003 [exhibition catalogue]

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 3rd Year No 1 1927
Jubilee : Fr Henry Browne
Fr Henry Browne was fêted at Leeson Street on November 1st. He had his share of College work in Tullabeg. But as far back as 1891 he was sent to University College, Dublin, where he played a full man's part in making that Jesuit establishment the first College in Ireland of the old “Royal”. Even “Queen’s” Belfast notwithstanding its enormous advantages, had eventually to acknowledge the superiority of the Dublin College, and the men who worked it.
Fr. Browne's Oxford training was a valuable asset in bringing University College so well to the front. He remained Professor in the Royal, and then in the National University to the year 1922, and is now engaged, amongst other things, in doing a work dear to the heart of men like Francis Regis, looking after the poor, especially children, in the worst slums of London.

Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934

Leeson St :
Monday, November 20th, was a red-letter day in the history of Leeson street, for it witnessed the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the House's foundation. In November, 1833. the Community came into being at 86 St Stephen's Green, where it remained until 1909, when the building was handed over to the newly constituted National University. The Community, however, survived intact and migrated to a nearby house in Lesson Street, where it renewed its youth in intimate relationship with the Dublin College of the University.
Its history falls this into two almost equal periods, different, indeed, in many ways, yet essentially one, since the energies of the Community during each period have been devoted to the same purpose, the furtherance of Catholic University Education in Ireland.
A precious link between the two eras is Father Tom Finlay, who was a member of the Community in 1883, and ever since has maintained his connection with it. His presence on Monday evening, restored to his old health after a severe illness was a source of particular pleasure to the whole gathering. It was also gratifying to see among the visitors Father Henry Browne, who had crossed from England at much personal inconvenience to take part in the celebration. Not only was Father Browne a valued member of the Community for over thirty years, but he acquired additional merit by putting on record, in collaboration with Father McKenna, in that bulky volume with the modest title " A Page of Irish History," the work achieved by the House during the first heroic age of its existence. It was a pleasure, too, to see hale and well among those present Father Joseph Darlington, guide, philosopher and friend to so many students during the two periods. Father George O'Neill, who for many years was a distinguished member of the Community, could not, alas. be expected to make the long journey from his newer field of fruitful labor in Werribee, Australia.
Father Superior, in an exceptionally happy speech, described the part played by the Community, especially in its earlier days of struggle, in the intellectual life of the country. The venerable Fathers who toiled so unselfishly in the old house in St. Stephens Green had exalted the prestige of the Society throughout Ireland. Father Finlay, in reply, recalled the names of the giants of those early days, Father Delany, Father Gerald Hopkins, Mr. Curtis and others. Father Darlington stressed the abiding influence of Newman, felt not merely in the schools of art and science, but in the famous Cecilia Street Medial School. Father Henry Browne spoke movingly of the faith, courage and vision displayed by the leaders of the Province in 1883, when they took on their shoulders such a heavy burden. It was a far cry from that day in 1883, when the Province had next to no resources, to our own day, when some sixty of our juniors are to be found, as a matter of course preparing for degrees in a National University. The progress of the Province during these fifty years excited feelings of
admiration and of profound gratitude , and much of that progress was perhaps due to the decision, valiantly taken in 1883 1883, which had raised the work of the Province to a higher plane.

Irish Province News 16th Year No 4 1941

Obituary :

Father Henry Browne

Father Henry Browne died at Heythrop College on March 14 1941. He had been in failing health for the past two or three years, and had recently been evacuated from Roehampton to Heythrop owing to the air-raids over London. To quote the words of an English Father who knew him well in these last years “here he occupied himself mostly in prayer, and on March 14th brought to a serene close eighty-eight years of arduous, enthusiastic, joyful, supernatural work for the Master”.

Father Henry Browne was born at Birkenhead on August 7, 1853 but his father, Mr. J. Wilson Browne, was a Birmingham man, his mother was Joan McKnight. Who's Who contains a notice of his grandfather, Captain J. Murray Browne, who “fought at Albuera and throughout the Peninsular War, and joined the Portuguese army where he became Assistant Quartennaster-General under Marshal Beresford.” Father Browne was educated at King Edward's High School, Birmingham, and went to New College, Oxford. He was received into the Church in 1874, when his undergraduate course was not yet completed, and was advised by Cardinal Manning to interrupt his studies. Je joined the Irish Province in 1877, and entered the novitiate at Milltown Park on October 31st. After his first vows he spent a year as a Junior at Milltown Park. In 1880 he went to Tullabeg, where he spent four years as master under two Rectors, Fr Sturzo and Fr. George Kelly. The Intermediate System was then in its early stages, and Mr. Browne taught Rhetoric and Mathematics (1880-81),
Humanities (1881-2) , 1 Grammar (1882-3), Syntax, Classics and English (1883-4).
From 1884-6 Father Browne studied Philosophy at Milltown Park, where he had Fathers Peter Finlay and William Hayden as his Professors. In 1886 he went to St. Beuno's, where he was ordained in the summer of 1889. He returned to Milltown for his fourth year of theology. and was then sent to University College to teach Latin and Greek, replacing Father Richard Clarke of the English Province.
From 1890 to 1909 (with the exception of one year, 1894-95, which he spent as a Tertian Father at Roehampton), Father Browne was kept busy in Dublin as Professor of Classics and Fellow of the Royal University of Ireland. His energy was simply amazing. Two early Handbooks of Latin and Greek Composition went through various editions, though they have since lost their vogue. His Handbook of Homeric Study was for many years counted the best popular introduction in English to the famous controversy, on which Father Browne
was never weary of lecturing his own students at U.C.D. He took a leading part in the foundation of the Classical Association of Ireland and was elected President of this body in 1913. He was also a member of the Council of the Society for Hellenic Studies, Chairman (for a time) of the Archaeologica Aids Committee of the Association for the Reform of Latin Teaching, and member of the Committee of the British Association for Museums. In this connection he visited the U.S.A. in 1916 as a member of a special Committee to report on the American museum system, and his volume of essays (Our Renaissance : Essays on the Reform and Revival of Classical Studies), published in 1917 reflects his interests in these strenuous years. Father Browne's old students will not need to be reminded of his immense zest for all forms of archaeological research. He counted several of the leading English
archaeologists as among his personal friends. There had been an earlier stage when Greek music had attracted his attention - though it must be confessed that Father Browne's aptitude for musical theory was disputed by some of his colleagues. But who could resist so great a vital force? Father Browne would strum a piano for hours on end, convincing himself (and some others) that Greek music was most closely connected (through Gregorian music) with ancient Irish music as represented in Moore's Melodies. Who's Who contains the following condensed statement of this phase of Father Browne's activities “He has experimented in the melodic rendering of Greek choral rhythms giving demonstrations before the British Association at the Dublin meeting (1908) and at Columbia and Chicago Universities.
It seems a far cry from these external activities to the inner motive which explains the dual character of Father Henry Browne's life. But those who lived with him knew that he had other interests. For many years he was' exceptionally successful as Director of the Students Sodality in the old University College, giving monthly talks to large numbers. As early as 1896 he had been drawn into the work of Saint Joseph's Young Priests' Society by his lifelong friend and fellow-convert, Father Joseph Darlington. Father Darlington had to leave Ireland for a year to make his tertianship, and he succeeded (with some difficulty) in persuading Father Browne to take his place for one year. Those first hesitations were soon forgotten, and Father Browne continued to edit Saint Joseph’s Sheaf, and to be the life and soul of the Society for the next twenty-five years. He was particularly keen on the work of the Mungret Apostolic School, and deserves to be reckoned as one of the chief benefactors of that important work for the missionary priesthood. He was also a pioneer propagandist for the Chinese Mission here in Ireland. In 1915 he helped to re-organise Saint Joseph's Young Priests' Society as a national work, approved and commended by the Irish Hierarchy.
The last twenty years of Father Browne's life were spent outside of Ireland. Although he came back to Dublin more than once, and was always eager to keep in touch with the Leeson Street community.
A brief record of his activities during these years will help to complete the picture of this strenuous worker for Christ’s Kingdom. For the first two years Father Browne was stationed at Osterley, where he helped Father Lester up his work for late vocations (Our Lady's Young Priests), and taught Latin to some of the students. In a recent issue of Stella Maris Father Clement Tigar, who has succeeded Father Lester at Osterley, pays warm tribute to Father Browne's work for this good cause. He also wrote a pamphlet on the K.B.S. movement, and a very pleasant book on the recent work of the Catholic Evidence Guild (1924). This latter work made a special appeal to Father Browne - zeal for the conversion of Protestant England - and he soon threw himself heart and soul into the work of open-air lecturing and catechising. His older friends in Dublin, who knew him for the most part as the very type of an academic Professor of Greek were first startled, then amused to hear that Father Browne was exceptionally successful in this new role. He had a knack of answering casual hecklers in their own style - his answer was often so completely unexpected (and occasionally so irrelevant) that the heckler was left speechless with surprise, and unable to cause any further trouble. From Osterley, Father Browne was soon transferred to Farm Street, where he added a new field to his labours. This was a Newsboys' Club which he himself organised and directed at Horton one of the most difficult of London's slum areas. It was open to boys of every religious denomination. The mere labour of going down to Horton from Farm Street on several nights a week would have been sufficient to flaunt a younger and more vigorous man. But Father Browne now well on in his seventies, was indomitable.
In 1927 Father Browne came back for a visit to Dublin, to celebrate his Golden Jubilee with the Fathers of the Lesson Street community. In 1930 and 1931 he was here again, and was busily engaged on compiling a short history of the old University College, with the collaboration of Father Lambert McKenna. The book appeared in 1930 under the title “A Page of Irish History”. In the next year Father Browne took part in the Congress of the Irish Province which was held in University Hall, Hatch Street. for the purpose of studying the Exercises. He chose for his share in the discussion the subject of Ignatian Prayer - always a favourite topic with him in private conversation - and his comments will be found in “Our Colloquium”, pp. 129-131. He had already published a book on the theory of mystical contemplation under the title “Darkness or Light? : An Essay in the Theory of Divine Contemplation” (Herder, 1925). Many years earlier (1903) he had edited a volume entitled “The City of Peace”, in which he gathered together various autobiographical accounts of recent conversions to the Catholic Church. His own account of his conversion to the true Faith at Oxford is well worth reading for the light it throws on his own strong direct and outspoken character.
Hoxton Club and these many other activities filled Father Browne's life until 1984, when he was in his eighty-second year. He had already made plans for the transference of the Club to other hands, and it was finally passed over to the management of a joint committee of past students of Stonyhurst and the Sacred Heart Convent Roehampton. He himself felt that the end was near, but his energy was not yet spent. For the next few years he threw himself with all his old fire and enthusiasm into one last campaign for the conversion of England
through the intercession of Teresa. Higginson, in whom he had implicit faith. An adverse decision came from Rome some three years ago and Father Browne found this set-bask one of the severest trials in his long life. But he never hesitated in his obedience and submission to authority, and his faith in the ultimate conversion of his fellow countrymen never wavered for an instant. The present writer visited him frequently in the last years of his life, and it was impossible to resist the impression of a life that was more and more absorbed in the work of prayer for his fellow-Christians. Old memories of Dublin days would come back to him, but the conversion of England was his main preoccupation. He had asked to be moved from Farm Street to Roehampton, so that he might prepare himself for death in the company of the novices. But it was not to be. The air-raids on Roehampton made evacuation a duty, and Father Browne was transferred some months before his death to Heythrop near Oxford. Old memories of Oxford days. and of his own conversion, must have come back to him with double force. Those who knew him say that his last months were spent mainly in prayer. He was in his eighty-eighth year, but still unwearied in his zeal, when the end came at last, and he has been laid to rest at Heythrop College, which is now one of the most active centres of that campaign for the conversion of England which lay nearer to his heart than any other human cause. May he rest in peace. (A.G.)

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Henry Browne SJ 1853-1941
Fr Henry Browne was born of Anglican parents at Birkenhead, England, on August 7th 1853. He was educated at King Edward’s High School, Birmingham and New College Oxford, and entered the Catholic Church in 1874. Three years later he joined the Irish Province of the Society at Milltown Park. He pursued his higher studies at Milltown Park and at St Beuno’s, North Wales, and was ordained priest in 1889.

In the following year he began his long association with University College Dublin as Professor of Ancient Classics and Fellow of the Royal University of Ireland. During these fruitful years, 1890-1922, Fr Browne’s talent as lecturer, writer, organiser found its full scope. In addition to a very useful volume dealing with Greek and Latin composition, he was the author of “A Handbook of Homeric Studies”, which held its own as the best secular introduction to a famous controversy. He took a leading part in the foundation of the Classical Association of Ireland, and was a member of the Council of the Society for Hellenic Studies and of the Committee of the Irish Association of Museums.

Another side of Fr Browne’s activities in Dublin during these years was the zeal he displayed in promoting vocations to te missionary priesthood. As early as 1896 he had been drawn into the work of St Joseph’s Young Priests Society, which he served for a quarter of a century.

The last twenty years of Fr Browne's life were spent outside Ireland, and marked what we might call its Second Spring. He helped Fr lester in his work for late vocations at Osterley, London, and in open-air lecturing and catechising. In these years date his very pleasant book on the work of the Catholic Evidence Guild. On his transfer to Farm Street, he added a new field to his labours, a newsboys club in Hoxton in the East End of London.

He remained in touch with the Irish province during this period of his life, and wrote an account of the old University College in “A Page of Irish History”. The story about his own conversion to the faith is told in “The City of Peace” (1903), and also in a chapter of a book “Roads to Rome” by Rev John O’Brien. Deserving also of special mention is Fr Browne’s work on the theory of mystical contemplation entitled “Darkness or Light” (1925).

Fr Browne closed his strenuous apostolic life on March 14th 1941 at St Beuno’s, North Wales, where he had been evacuated during the air-raids of World War II, interested to the end in the work for the conversion of Protestant England.

Burke Savage, Roland, 1912-1998, Jesuit priest and editor

  • IE IJA J/35
  • Person
  • 11 August 1912-15 September 1998

Born: 11 August 1912, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1931, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1944, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1949, St Ignatius Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 15 September 1998, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the Clongowes Wood College SJ, County Kildare community at the time of death.

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1946 at St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Savage, Roland (‘Ronnie’) Marcus Anthony Burke-
by David Murphy

Savage, Roland (‘Ronnie’) Marcus Anthony Burke- (1912–98), Jesuit priest and editor, was born in north Dublin on 11 August 1912, son of Matthew Burke-Savage, medical doctor, and his wife Alice (née O'Connor). Educated at Clongowes Wood College, Co. Kildare, he entered the Society of Jesus at Emo Court, Co. Laois, on 7 September 1931. He lived with the Jesuit community in Rathfarnham, Co. Dublin, while he studied arts at UCD (1933–6), where he was Hutchinson Stewart scholar in English literature (1934) and graduated BA (1936) and MA (1941) with first-class honours.

Professed of his first vows in March 1934, he moved to Milltown Park in Dublin, where he studied theology (1941–5). Ordained on 31 July 1944, he spent his tertianship at Milltown, before moving to the Leeson St. community in 1946 as a writer and assistant editor of Studies. He published his biography of Catherine McAuley (qv) in 1946 (reprinted, 2nd ed., 1955), a work of which he was justifiably proud. In 1947 he took over the editorship of the Irish Monthly (1947–50), while still continuing to work on Studies, of which he became editor in 1950. During his tenure as editor of Studies he reorganized the journal's administration and encouraged a new generation of contributors, including Garret FitzGerald. Towards the end of his term as editor it was thought by some that Studies had become less critical of the catholic hierarchy than it had been previously. In 1968 he handed over the editorship.

Having served as superior of the Leeson St. community (1951–9), he was appointed in the latter year director of the Central Catholic Library from which he resigned in 1968. Moving to Clongowes, he worked as house historian, writer, and editor of the Clongownian. He served later as college archivist and curator of the college museum. In failing health he moved to the Jesuit nursing home at Cherryfield Lodge, Sandford Rd, Dublin, in 1997 and underwent an operation. He never really recovered and died there 15 September 1998. He was buried in the Jesuit plot in Glasnevin cemetery. Throughout his life, Ronnie Burke-Savage suffered from depression and found life more difficult as he grew older. His affliction often manifested itself in reclusiveness and difficult relations with his colleagues.

ITWW; Louis McRedmond, To the greater glory (1991); Ir. Times, 16 Sept. 1998; Studies, lxxxvii, no. 348 (1998); Interfuse (Jesuit in-house publication), no. 101 (1999); information from Fr Fergus O 'Donoghue SJ and Dr Thomas Morrissey SJ

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 101 : Special Edition 1999

Obituary

Fr Roland (Ronnie) Burke-Savage (1912-1988)

11th Aug. 1912: Born in Dublin
Early Education at Clongowes
7th Sept. 1931: Entered the Society at Emo.
13th Mar. 1934: First Vows at Emo.
1933 - 1936: Rathfarnham - Arts at UCD, MA
1941 - 1945: Milltown Park - Theology
31st July 1944: Ordained at Milltown Park.
1945 - 1946: Tertianship
1946 - 1968; Leeson Street
1947 - 1950: Assist Editor Studies; Editor Irish Monthly, Writer.
1950 - 1951: Minister, Editor Studies.
1951 - 1959: Superior; Editor Studies.
1959 - 1968: Director Central Catholic Library,
1968 - 1997: Clongowes - Editor Clongownian; Writer; House Historian.
1973 - 1976: Writer; Curator College Museum.
1976 -1997: Writer; College Archivist; Curator College Museum.
1997: Cherryfield Lodge - Prays for the Church and the Society

Father Burke-Savage had been in Cherryfield Lodge for the last year. He underwent a serious operation last May and never fully recovered. Although in good form he deteriorated over the week-end and died peacefully in Cherryfield Lodge at 6.10 a.m., Tuesday, 15 September 1998.

Homily at the Funeral Mass of Fr. Burke-Savage
The popular writer, Fr. John O'Donohue has a wonderful image of birth and death.

“Imagine if you could talk to a baby in the womb and explain its unity with the mother. How this cord of belonging gives it life. If you could then tell the baby that this was about to end. It was going to be expelled from the womb, pushed through a very narrow passage finally to be dropped out into vacant, open light. The cord which held it to its mother's womb was going to be cut and then it was going to be on its own for ever more. If the baby could talk back, it would fear that it was going to die. For the baby within the womb being born would seem like death."

Death is a kind of re-birth. We cling to the cord of life but eventually we must let go and then we enter a new world where time and space are utterly different, a world without shadow, darkness, loneliness, isolation or pain. We are at home with the God from whom we came and to whom we go. We are in God's world of goodness, unity, beauty , truth and, above all, absolute love. The Trinity, Absolute Love, Absolute Giving and Receiving, Absolute Intimacy and Creativity is where all the longings of the human heart at last find fulfillment.

It is to that world that Ronnie, as he was affectionately known in the Society, has now gone. Roland Marcus Anthony, to give him his full name, was born in Dublin in 1912. Somehow that name fits for, in many ways, he was a renaissance man. Educated here in Clongowes, he entered the Society of Jesus in 1931. He took a first class honours BA in UCD and later a first class honours MA also in UCD. While in UCD, he was president of the Literary and Historical Society and thought nothing of bringing the likes of the poet T.S. Eliot to speak to the students. In 1946 he became the assistant editor of the Jesuit review “Studies” and at the same time he published a life of Catherine McAuley, the foundress of the Sisters of Mercy, a book of which he was very proud.

In 1950 he became the editor of Studies. During his years as editor he was embroiled in many controversies. At the same time he got to know many of the students in UCD and had a deep and lasting influence on many of them. Some later rose to prominence in Irish public life.

In 1959 he became the Director of the Central Catholic Library and in 1968 he retired to Clongowes where he was the college archivist and curator of the college museum.

All his life, Ronnie suffered from one major cross. He was prone to deep depression but he bore this cross with great constancy and faith. It was his faith that sustained him and gave him the courage and will power to continue.

In many ways his life, particularly in his later years, can be illustrated by two stories. The first is a Taoist tale.
The carpenter said to his apprentice: “Do you know why this tree is so big and so old?” The apprentice said: “No. Why?” Then the carpenter answered: “Because it is useless. If it were useful it would have been cut down, sawn up and used for beds and tables and chairs. But because it is useless, it has been allowed to grow. That is why it is now so great that you can rest in its shadow”.

Ronnie, in his periods of depression, often felt that he was useless. But as he grew to accept himself for what he was - when he ceased to link his own value and worth to past achievements or to work he could or could not do in the present, as so many people tend to do - then, like the tree, he achieved a serene and gentle maturity as, in these latter years especially, he quietly prayed for the Church and his brother Jesuits. Another story sums up his life:

The Master was in an expansive mood so his disciples sought to learn from him the stages he had passed through in his quest for the divine. “God first led me by the hand”, he said, “into the Land of Sorrows; there I lived until my heart was purged of every inordinate attachment. Then I found myself in the Land of Love whose burning flames consumed whatever was left in me of self. This brought me to the Land of Silence where the mysteries of life and death were bared before my wondering eyes”. “Was that the final stage of your quest?” they asked. “No”, the Master said. “One day God said, ‘Today I shall take you to the innermost sanctuary of the temple, to the heart of God himself. And I was led to the Land of Laughter’.”

May Ronnie's joy now be complete, all the longings of his heart fulfilled as he joins the Lord he served for so long in that Land of Laughter.

Philip Fogarty

Casey, Dermot M, 1911-1997, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/22
  • Person
  • 02 June 1911-16 February 1997

Born: 02 June 1911, Phibsborough, Dublin
Entered: 01 September 1928, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 29 July 1943, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 03 February 1947, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died 16 February 1997, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at time of death.

Early education at O’Connell’s Schools

by 1935 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
1936-1939 at Paris France (FRA) studying psychology

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 25th Year No 2 1950
GENERAL :
Father Dermot Casey is staying at Wimbledon College, and working each day, from Monday to Friday, at the Manor Hospital, Epsom. His work in practical psychology is so much appreciated by the Principal that when one of the staff left before Christmas to take up another appointment. Father Casey was invited to take his place for as long as he could manage. He is now paid for his work and is gaining most valuable experience. He is also attending a very good course on juvenile delinquency. He is attending the Psychological Congress to be held at Stíllorgan in celebration of the 4th centenary of the death of St. John of God during the week following Easter week.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 92 : August 1996

Obituary

Fr Dermot Casey (1911-1997)

2nd June 1911: Born in Dublin
Early education, CBS Schools, Nth Richmond St
1st Sept. 1928: Entered the Society at Tullabeg
2nd Sept. 1930: First vows at Emo
1930 - 1933: Rathfarnham: Studied Science at UCD
1933 - 1934: Tullabeg: Studied Philosophy
1934 - 1936: Jersey: Studied Philosophy
1936 - 1939: Sorbonne: Doctoral studies in Psychology
1939 - 1940: Mungret College: Teaching
1940 - 1945: Milltown Park : Studies in Theology
29th July 1943: Ordained Priest at Milltown Park
1945 - 1946; Rathfarnham: Tertianship
1946 - 1949: Tullabeg: Prof. of Rational & Experi. Psychology
1949 - 1952: London: Psychologist at Epsom hospital
1952 - 1958: Tullabeg: Professor of Psychology
1954: University of Detroit (Jan-June) Prof. of Psych
1958 - 1970: Leeson St: Founder, Director St. Declan's Child Guidance Centre
1970 - 1975: Rathfarnham: Director St. Declan's School
1975 - 1979: Leeson Street: Director St. Declan's School until 1977
1979 - 1981: Limerick/Clongowes: Counsellor
1981 - 1982: Rathfarnham: Counsellor
1982 - 1997: Leeson Street: Messsenger Office work, Writer

Dermot Casey arrived in Tullabeg on 1st September 1928 to begin his noviceship. I met him at recreation only a few times before his long retreat which was then made throughout October. In the second week of November, Father Martin Maher, the Master of Novices, sent for me to tell me there was another musician in the house - Brother Casey - a 'cellist. Over the next few days I was assigned to preparing with him in free time the pieces he was to play at the novices' concert on the night of the feast of St. Stanislaus. I saw at once that he was no amateur but a musician of impeccable technique. Later I was to learn that Dermot's parents were both professional musicians - his father being leading cellist in the then Dublin Philharmonic Society, forerunner of the Radio Symphony Orchestra.

During our juniorate years, together with Fr. William Saul, we played the Beethoven and Schubert trios. In Tullabeg for our one year of philosophy together, Dermot and I played the same lovely trios with Fr. Arthur Little, probably the greatest violinist the Irish Province could boast of whether before, then or since.

Dermot finished his philosophy in Jersey and then transferred to Paris where he graduated Doctor of Philosophy at Sorbonne. He was able to finish his studies in Paris just before the outbreak of World War II. Strange to say he never returned to Paris. He often remarked to me that he saw during his years there the construction of the great seven storey building in the rue de Grenelle which was not yet occupied before his return to Ireland.

Back in Ireland, 1939, he spent a year in Mungret, teaching and in charge of the choir. We met again in Milltown in the years 1940-42, but twenty more years were to pass before we found ourselves once more in the same community.

He was ordained in 1943 and after the completion of his studies and tertianship was appointed professor of psychology at Tullabeg. He could hardly have foreseen then that Tullabeg would close down as a philosophate in 1962 on the recommendation of the Visitator, Fr. John Mc Mahon (USA). But already he was preparing a new field of activity. Ever since the early 1950's he was engaged in Youth Guidance and took up residence in Leeson Street. The last decade of his connection with Tullabeg must have been demanding on his health as he had now to commute regularly between Dublin and the Bog in the days of bad roads or uncomfortable trains. Already by 1960 he had established St. Declan's. In 1961, I myself was assigned to Leeson St. Over the previous twenty years, it was only on a few occasions, at funerals, that I met Dermot. On my arrival in Leeson Street Fr. Tom Shuley, the minister (and incurable leg-puller), called me aside to warn me against causing any annoyance to Father Casey by asking “how is your backward school doing?” As I suspected, no one ever dared to put such a question to Dermot. He was now an acknowledged power in the land in his clinical work in St. Declan's.

Over the next thirteen years I could appreciate his way of life in his mature years: he was an excellent community man, a self-sacrificing worker - and utterly selfless. He had long given up the 'cello but he would ask me about the piano. There was none in Leeson St. - there was a very bad one in University Hall but I could depend on two houses of friends to keep in practice.

In 1970 he left us for Rathfarnham, after which I saw little of him except at funerals. Four years later I also left Leeson St for work in France. It was about this time he resigned from St. Declan's, but continued work at Child Guidance centres in Limerick and Clane - in these latter years he was a member of the Crescent community and then at Clongowes. He returned to Leeson Street in 1982 and for the next three years was assistant at the Messenger Office. The year before that I returned from France and soon was back visiting the archives in Leeson Street. For the first few years Dermot and I met only occasionally. We were both busy - Dermot at the Messenger Office and myself at work on the Irish Martyrs (chiefly Dominic Collins). We were both in our seventies. There were still a few old Fathers in Leeson St and at a moment's notice Dermot might be called on to drive one of them to see the doctor or the dentist. But towards the end of the 1980's he was suffering from hip-trouble. In spite of a successful operation he was now a changed man.

For the last ten years of his life he became more and more immobile - his walks from “35” were now no further than to the Grand Canal. He was a lonely man, for most of his contemporaries of 1928 were dead and gone. In our Saturday morning chats he would recall dead contemporaries: Pádraig O Brolcháin, Walter O'Connor, Alphonsus O'Connell, Lol Kearns, etc etc. Fortunately his pensive mood would be discontinued by a sally of his delightful, pawky humour: “I say, Frank, this place is a house of communications - you have young women here shouting all day from one landing to the next”. One of these observations became known to the subject thereof and to her hearty amusement: “This is the office of the President of Ireland - Mrs Mary Rickard”. Another day it was the visit of a young theologian at dinner that drew the following observation: “I don't know whether that young man works much at his theology but he is trying to look like Gerry Adams”.

He had a deep love for the Society and regretted much the closing down of Mungret, Rathfarnham and Tullabeg. I did my best to persuade him that all this was in God's Providence and in any case we were recommended by Christ Himself to pray to the Lord of the Harvest to send labourers into his harvest - to send us again many young men as in the past to continue the mission of the Society. That Dermot was nostalgic for the past was understandable. He belonged to the great period inaugurated seventy-five years ago by Fr. John Fahy when the Irish Province was en plein essor, what with its populous scholasticates, good religious observance and generous idealism.

He looked forward to my Saturday visits. When the mood was on both of us we would have some music and now and then he might tactfully ask me would I like to hear my favourite morceau of Brahms. Occasionally too he might mention a passage from a spiritual book which he found spiritually regarding. His favourite authors were always the well-tried classics of the past. In spite of his increasing lameness, he would insist on seeing me off at the hall door. To the last he was courtesy itself. After a meeting with him I felt the real beneficiary. For me, acquaintance with Dermot Casey was one of the great blessings of life. RIP

Proinsias Ó Fionnagáin SJ

Cassidy, Derek, 1943-2017, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/811
  • Person
  • 10 April 1943-30 March 2017

Born: 10 April 1943, Howth, Ballyfermot, Donnycarney, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1965, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 21 June 1974, Gonzaga College SJ, Dublin
Final vows: 04 March 1985, Coláiste Iognáid SJ, Galway
Died: 30 March 2017, Beaumont Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

Grew up in Howth, Ballyfermot, Donnycarney, Dublin.
by 1977 at Regis Toronto ONT, Canada (CAN S) studying

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/derek-cassidy-sj-man-soulful-presence/

Derek Cassidy SJ – a soulful presence
Fr Derek Cassidy SJ died peacefully on Thursday morning, 30 March, in Beaumont Hospital, Dublin. He had been a dialysis patient for many years. In recent months, his health began to deteriorate very rapidly. The staff of Beaumont Hospital knew him well and gave him great care. He lay in rest at Belvedere College SJ on 2 April and his funeral mass took place on 3 April in Gardiner Street Church, followed by burial at Glasnevin Cemetery. Leonard Moloney SJ, the Irish Provincial who worked with Fr Derek in Belvedere College, was the principal celebrant and homilist at the mass.
Fr Derek served as Rector of Belvedere College since 2002 and was a much-loved member of the College community. He was also a member of the Jesuit community in Gardiner St, Dublin and will be sadly missed by them. He is deeply regretted by his brother Damien and wife Anne, sisters Thelma, Sandra and Denise, nephew Joe, nieces Frances, Susan and Jennifer, grandnieces Chloe, Lucy, Katie and Baby Anne, Jesuit brothers, extended family and his many friends.
Tributes were paid to Fr Derek through the Irish Jesuits page on Facebook. Bláth McDonnell commented, “Rest in Peace Fr. Derek. He had always been such a calm, kind and gentle presence around the College and will be sadly missed”. Thomas Giblin said, “What I remember of Derek was his complete presence in a conversation. It is in his eyes in the photo above. When you needed him, he was with you. There was no doubt. That made him a great chaplain and a wonderful friend”. And Clar Mag Uidhrin said, “So sorry to hear this. I’m blessed I had the opportunity to work alongside him. Rest in peace Fr Derek”. And Niall Markey noted, “Rest in peace, Derek. Thank you for the kindness you showed to me throughout my Jesuit journey. God bless”.
Fr Derek worked in school chaplaincy for a large part of his Jesuit life. He also taught as a Religious Education/Religious Studies teacher at Belvedere for several years. His ratings were above the average at 4.35/5 stars as recorded on ratemyteachers.com. Students comments included: “Biggest baller going, inspiration and a half, aspire to be like this man”; “legend of the school”; “great guy”; and “a class act, very quiet but when he preaches it all makes sense, especially with the Simpsons references”. The school’s pastoral blog noted his Golden Jubilee in 2015 and remarked, “Fr Derek is a wonderful example of what Jesuit life represents”.
Fr Derek made deep impressions on the Belvedere community during the last 16 years of his life. Headmaster Gerry Foley was particularly close to him, as evident from this personal tribute:

Remembering Derek
When we gathered in St. Francis Xavier Church, in Gardner Street, we gathered in sadness, but we wanted to celebrate and give thanks for Fr. Derek’s life with his family and with the Jesuit province. Each of us knew Derek in a different way and we all have memories of a man who could laugh at himself, the world and laugh and talk with people of very different ages and backgrounds. In mourning him we remember fondly stories that highlight his wit, his willingness to confront what he perceived was wrong, even if that led to a difficult experience for both himself and whoever thought he was going to hold back, simply because of his vocation. You did not have to guess Derek’s opinions and views. He could be subtle or when required, bold and forthright when subtlety failed.
Derek’s response to illness made you realise that we should never take being alive and having health, for granted. The theology of salvation was not theoretical for him, it was a lived example.
Images of him laughing, chatting driving in the car or the cheerleaders in the minibus, mix with images of him being silent and attentive. I was lucky enough to bring him the Leinster Senior Cup on the Sunday morning after St. Patrick’s Day. He was delighted and it was uplifting to see the chief cheerleader who loved rugby so much. He received that cup three times previously on the Front door of Belvedere House, so it represented commitment and dedication for him.
There are many things in his office, which point to who Derek is and what he brought to the college. There is a small-framed reproduction of the painting, Light of the world, Holman Hunt, Jesus carrying a lantern knocking on the door. “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If any man hears my voice, open the door, I will come to him, and I will sup with him and he with me”. On the left side is the human soul, locked away behind an overgrown doorway. Derek invited people to listen more carefully for that knock and when it came, wrench open the door, which could be difficult, and invite Jesus in.
On the table in Derek’s office is “The Simpsons and Philosophy, The D’oh of Homer.” It’s noteworthy that Richard Dawkins, Brief Candle in the Dark” is on the shelf, so Derek was catholic in his sources of inspiration. The connection may not seem obvious, but one of Derek’s favourite episodes of the Simpsons, which he used in his homilies, is the one where Bart, declaring he does not believe in having a soul, sells it, only to regret it when he discovers that life with soul is a life deprived.
If you re- watch the episode of the Simpsons he oft quoted, where Bart sells his soul, you will get a better understanding of Derek’s ability to pick something simple and use it to point to what is profound. He used it in his homily to remind all of us that soul is important, the essence of who we are and not to sell out for something else. For what doth it profit a man, to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul? For what should a man give in exchange for his soul?
By using the Simpsons, Derek highlighted the challenge of Jesuit Education, to place the person of Jesus at the heart of what we do.
So, amid all Derek’s jocularity, there lay a sincerity, a belief that life was so much better lived if the gentleness of humility and care of Jesus was our inspiration.
Looking around his office, the photograph of one of the first Kairos, a card depicting Fr. John Sullivan, the photo of Fr. Reidy, photos of his family, the mass booklet from one of the Past Pupil Reunions, the framed newspaper article on the Jes winning the cup, The Belvo black and white, the Poster of the Holy Land, the model of the BMW 3 series reveal that Derek treasured many people and held them close to his heart, and indicated why he was held in their heart.
One of Derek’s many achievements in Belvedere was to develop the role of Rector, which was a challenge given we are not residents in the school but we are a community almost without boundaries. His presence as a man who was reflective and invited reflection has had an impact on so many people and on so many different levels.
His dry wit often brightened the moment and his genuine question asking “How are you?...” was never followed by a hurried moment, he gave generously of his time and gave people space so they could take time out of their hurried day, to stop, think and enter that space where prayer leads us. That appreciation of the moment lay at the heart of so many memories of him either sharing a glass, or at a meal or on a journey in somewhere like Greece, Rome, with students, or for me, very fond memories of when we were setting up the Chinese Exchange or the Boston exchanges. In Hong Kong, climbing a steep hill, the hand drawn rickshaw pullers approached Derek and avoided both the late Barry O’ Leary and I. We joked that it was the result of old age being respected in China, he quipped that their reluctance to approach us was a justified concern for their back, given our weight!
These exchanges expanded the Jesuit network and helped develop the sense of being a community sharing our faith journey. As with his untiring work in Fundraising and on the Buildings Committee, and Jesuit Identity Committee, he was passionate in providing the right environment to nurture community, friendship and learning.
Derek’s publican background gave him the skills to be fully present to people, to hear their story and enter into it with them. That is why so many students hold his memory dearly and fondly. He was there, fully present, not just physically, but in his un-divided attention to them.
If you asked Derek how he was, he never complained, instead he would reply with something like, “looking down on the daisies, which is better than looking up at them!” Even when he lost his toe he made a joke of it, saying the coffin was getting lighter by the day, and that was another aspect of Derek that made him attractive, particularly to students, he was a bit of a rebel, could be anti-establishment, feared not death because he believed and yet remained true to all that was good.
When we went to Hong Kong, Derek met Fr Joseph Mallin SJ (102), the last surviving child of Michael Mallin, executed leader of the Easter Rising in 1916. Derek and he shared a Republican background and he was immensely proud to be Irish. The Coleman’s mustard, sitting on the shelf in his office, is probably the only British thing he would admit tasted good.
On the little table is the statue of the Holy Family, Joseph and Mary looking at Jesus as he learns the trade of carpentry. Joseph’s hand is raised, obviously in instruction, while Mary looks on with great pride in her son. Derek had that care and pride for the students as they grew in their apprenticeship of what would be their adult personality. He loved young people and loved the privilege of being involved in their life. Lastly there was the prayer on the wall, and I think it captures a lot of his humour and honesty.
“Dear God, so far today I’ve done alright, I haven’t gossiped, I haven’t been greedy, grumpy, nasty, selfish or over indulgent. I’m very thankful for that. But in a few minutes God, I’m going to get out of bed, and from then on I’m probably going to need a lot more help...”
Derek was that help for a lot of us and while extending our sympathy and condolences to his community and his family, I want to extend, on behalf of the Belvedere family, a sincere Thank You. For 16 years, we enjoyed Derek as chaplain, teacher, Form Tutor, Rector and Board member. You shared him with us and we are forever grateful for that. His soul will continue his work with the students and families and we gain strength from his example as a Jesuit, a priest, a friend and a companion.
May he rest in the peace of Christ. Gerry Foley

Early Education at St Mary’s Convent Arklow; SS Michael & John, Smock Alley, Dublin; De La Salle, Ballyfermot, Dublin; Mungret College SJ; Apprentice Solicitor & Barman

1967-1970 Rathfarnham - Studying Arts at UCD
1970-1971 Mungret College SJ - Regency : Teacher; Studying for H Dip in Education at UCD
1971-1976 Milltown Park - Studying Philosophy & Theology (integrated)
1974 Milltown Park - Administration at Irish School of Ecumenics
1976-1977 Toronto, Ontario, Canada - Studying Theology at Regis College
1977-1978 Tabor House - Vice-Superior; Minister; Assistant Director of Retreat House
1978-1980 Leave of Absence
1980-1982 Coláiste Iognáid SJ - Chaplain; Teacher
1982-1983 Tullabeg - Tertianship
1983-1989 Coláiste Iognáid SJ - Director of Pastoral Care; Teacher
1989-1990 Tabor - Vice-Superior; Young Adults Delegate; Assistant in Retreat House
1990-1999 Campion House - Vice-Superior; Young Adults Delegate; Assists Tabor House & JVC; Young Adult Ministry
1993 Superior at Campion
1995 Principal & Treasurer at University Hall
1996 Formation Delegate
1999-2001 Leeson St - Principal & Treasurer at University Hall; Young Adults & Formation Delegate
2000 Sabbatical
2001-2004 Belvedere College SJ - College Chaplain; Teacher
2002 Rector of Belvedere College SJ
2003 Superior of Gardiner St Community; Rector of Belvedere College SJ
2004-2017 Gardiner St - Superior of Gardiner St Community; Rector of Belvedere College SJ
2011 College Chaplain & Teacher at Belvedere College SJ
2012 Rector of Belvedere College SJ

Chan Yiu-sing, Lúcás, 1968-2015, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1042
  • Person
  • 07 June 1968-19 May 2015

Born: 07 June 1968, Wong Tai Sin, New Kowloon, Hong Kong
Entered: 08 January 1993, Singapore, Sinensis Province (CHN)
Ordained: 26 August 2006, Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Hong Kong
Died: 19 May 2015, Marquette University, Milwaukee WI, USA - Sinensis Province (CHN)

by 2013 came to Manresa (HIB) making Tertianship
by 2014 at Leeson St (HIB) teaching ISE

◆ Hong Kong Catholic Archives :
Society of Jesus diaconate ordination

Lúcás Chan Yiu-sing, a scholastic of the Society of Jesus, will be ordained as a deacon on the 31 July 2005 by Bishop Joseph Zen Ze-kiun.

Lúcás comes from a Catholic family in Wong Tai Sin and, as a child, was a parishioner of St. Vincent de Paul’s parish. He received his primary education at a nearby Franciscan school and completed his secondary education and matriculation at Ying Wa College. At the same time, he joined the Legion of Mary and was an active member until he joined the Society of Jesus.

Upon completing his tertiary education, Lucas started his teaching career, first as a student teacher at St. Paul’s Co-ed Secondary School, then as a full-time mathematics teacher at Wah Yan College, Kowloon.

He began seriously discerning his Jesuit vocation after participating in a three-week-long Jesuit South East Asia & Oceania Secondary Schools Administrators’ Programme, held in Manila in the summer of 1991. He was much impressed by the lifestyle and example of the Jesuits and other religious. After another one-and-a-half years of teaching, Lúcás applied to and was accepted into the Jesuit novitiate in Singapore.

Upon finishing two years of noviceship, he began philosophy training at the Holy Spirit Seminary College in Aberdeen. Two years later, he was sent to England to pursue a masters’ degree in educational management. In 1999,he went on mission to Cambodia and Macau for ‘regency’ where he was involved in both educational and social apostolates. In May 2002, he was assigned to Jesuit-run Ateneo de Manila University in The Philippines to do theology and a masters’ in pastoral ministry.

After diaconate ordination, Lúcás will leave for Boston, in the United States, to begin a licentiate programme (STL) in moral theology.

The Chinese Province of the Society of Jesus cordially invites you to join our liturgical celebration at 3.30pm at St. Ignatius Chapel, Wah Yan College, Kowloon.
Sunday Examiner Hong Kong - 24 July 2005

Two to be ordained to the priesthood

Reverend Peter Lo Pak-wing and Reverend Lúcás Chan Yiu-sing, will be ordained priests on August 26 at the Cathe­dral of Immaculate Conception by Bishop Joseph Zen Ze-kiun.

Lúcás Chan Yiu Sing, 38, was born to a Catholic family and was a parishioner of St. Vincent’s church, Wong Tai Sin, where he was a member of Legion of Mary until he joined the the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). After completing his tertiary education, worked, first as a student teacher at St. Paul’s Co-ed Secondary School, then as a full-time mathematics teacher at Wah Yan College, Kowloon.

He joined the Jesuits towards the end of 1992 and entered the novitiate in Singapore. After two years, he returned to Hong Kong and studied philosophy at the Holy Spirit Seminary College. From 1997 to 1999 he pursued a masters degree in education management in the United Kingdom before being sent on mission to Cambodia and Macau. He was then assigned to the Jesuit-run Ateneo de Manila University in The Philippines, where he studied theology and obtained a master’s degree in pastoral work management.

Following his diaconate ordination, Reverend Chan took up a licentiate programme (STL) in Moral Theology and Scripture in Boston, the United States of America. Over the past year, he has been involved in academic research on HIV/AIDS and was on the planning committee of The First International Cross-cultural Conference for Catholic Theological Ethicists, held in Padua, Italy last July.

Following his ordination to the priesthood, he will continue his studies in Boston and work at a children hospital. He will celebrate his first Mass at St. Ignatius Chapel at 9.00am on August 27.

Hong Kong-born Jesuit builder of bridges crosses to the eternal

Hong Kong born Jesuit Father Lúcás Chan Yiu-sing died unexpectedly on 19 May 2015 after collapsing at Marquette Hall, Marquette University, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the United States of America (US), where he had been an assistant professor of theology, He was 46-year-old.

Born on 7 June 1968, Father Chan was born to a Catholic family and was a parishioner of St. Vincent’s Parish, Wong Tai Sin, where he was a member of Legion of Mary. He joined the Society of Jesus in 1993 at the Loyola House Novitiate in Singapore and was ordained a priest on 26 August 2006 at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Caine Road, Hong Kong (Sunday Examiner, 20 August 2006 and 3 September 2006).

The Jesuit publication, America, reported on 22 May that Father Chan received his PhD in theological ethics at Boston College in 2010. He also received of post-doctoral fellowships from Yale and Georgetown universities and was a member of the Catholic Theological Society of America as well as the Society of Christian Ethics.

Father Chan served as a consultant to the Bioethics Committees of two Catholic Hospitals in Boston, and as Asian Regional Director of Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church.

Prior to joining the Marquette faculty he held academic appointments at Trinity College and the Jesuit European Tertianship Programme in Dublin, Ireland; the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley at Santa Clara University, California; and at The Chinese University of Hong Kong .

In his homily during the funeral Mass in Milwaukee, Father Stephen Tong, Jesuit superior for Hong Kong and director of the Xavier Retreat House, Cheung Chau, called him a bridge builder. He noted that in his two books - The Ten Commandments and the Beatitudes: Biblical Studies and Ethics for Real Life and Biblical Ethics in the Twenty-first Century: Developments, Emerging Consensus, and Future Directions - Father Chan spoke of building bridges.

“Lucas Chan wrote about building bridges because he was a bridge builder,” said Father Tong. “The man whose spiritual and intellectual formation, began in Hong Kong and ended in Milwaukee, had built bridges as he moved to England, Singapore, Cambodia, Macau, the Philippines, the US, Ireland, as well as Italy and Germany.”

Father Tong noted that he built other bridges, “He wrote and spoke around the world on the bridge between Christian and Confucian ethics. He and I, for instance, wrote an essay on it for the Jesuit, Macau-based Chinese Cross Currents. He constructed this bridge out of the virtues and he knew how important these bridges were… He also built bridges between the Old and New Testaments, by teaching us that the 10 Commandments and the eight Beatitudes are the two moral pillars of our religious tradition.”

He said, “Most of all he built bridges among us. In this congregation today, there are his Irish friends, his Cantonese friends, his Boston friends, his California friends and, most importantly, his new found Milwaukee friends. He has friends everywhere…” He went on to say, “Because of his bridge building among us, we are not isolated but connected. Many of you know me through Lucas, as I know you. He ushered us across bridges to meet one another…”

Father Tong concluded, saying, “Now as before, he goes before us again, building bridges for us. He has not left us, he never will, he is just ahead of us, building bridges.”

May he rest in peace.
Sunday Examiner Hong Kong - 21 June 2015

◆ Jesuits in Ireland https://www.jesuit.ie/news/warm-tributes-paid-to-lucas-chan-sj-rip/

Warm tributes paid to Lúcás Chan SJ, RIP
Warm tributes have been paid by noted academics and theologians from Ireland and around the world to Fr. Lúcás Chan SJ (46), a Hong Kong native and Jesuit of the Chinese Province who died suddenly on Tuesday 19 May after collapsing at Marquette University, Wisconsin, USA, where he was Assistant Professor of Theology. Prior to joining the faculty of Marquette in 2014 Lúcás spent a number of years in Dublin. He was the Michael Hurley SJ, Postdoctoral Fellow for 2013-14 at the Irish School of Ecumenics at Trinity College, and during that time he lived with the Jesuit Community in Leeson Street in the city-centre. He also lived in Dublin from 2012-13 while completing his Jesuit tertianship in Manresa.
Lúcás is fondly remembered in the Leeson Street Community. Superior Brian Grogan SJ paid this tribute:- “Lúcás was a delightful man and a good community member. A beam of sunshine on dark days, he never seemed to lose his inner happiness, and radiated good humour. Kind and considerate, he looked out for the older members of the community in unobtrusive ways. Since leaving us, he continued to correspond with me and ask for details of the brethren. I think of him as a prodigious worker, rising at an ungodly hour, to pray, have breakfast and get to work. He would cycle to Trinity College where he lectured in the Irish School of Ecumenics. He was highly conscientious with students, taking hours over marking scripts and giving helpful feedback. Saturdays and Sundays found him in his office. His was a 24/7 pace: I often tried to get him to slow down, take time out, etc. But he couldn’t stop. And of course he was a rising star in the academic world. His writings form a rich legacy. Yet he could find time to become more proficient in Irish (Gaelic), and we had good fun in helping him to master it. We were quietly proud that a native of Hong Kong esteemed our native tongue so much! We have a well-known phrase in Irish: Ní bheidh a leitheidí arís ann. ‘His like will not be found again’. He was, perhaps more obviously than most of us, unique!”
Linda Hogan, the vice provost and chief academic officer for Trinity College, said it was a “tremendous privilege” to have known and worked with Lucas. She said that while he was only beginning to gain recognition in his area of work, “it was already overdue since his publications were significant and profound.” Marquette University President Michael R. Lovell described Lúcás as being “dedicated his life to serving God and being a man for others around the world.” Robert Masson, the department chair in theology at the university, said the community were “still reeling” from his death.”We anticipated that he would be a leading voice in the next generation of moral theologians and we were delighted to have him join our faculty”, he said. Fr. Jim Keenan SJ of Boston College who worked with him as part of a global network of moral theologians known as ‘Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church’ (CTEWC) explained how Lúcás was in deep gratitude for the work he was involved with, “more than anything he was very happy that he could be a part of something that meant the world to him and to others and he was excited by the way this work brought him into connection with others in his parishes, his classrooms, his conferences or his friends and family.” Fr Jimmy Hurley SJ has now returned to Ireland from Hong Kong where he was missioned for many years and where he met Lúcás for the first time. At a special event in Trinity College to mark the life of Lúcás and his work, he paid warm tribute to him as a friend, Jesuit brother and academic.
A pioneer in the field of theological ethics, Lúcás focused his work in the still-emerging area of biblical ethics left a strong imprint in the field. The young theologian was to the fore in the academic effort to translate biblical teachings to the moral lives of ordinary Christians. At the time of his death he was editing a text that brought together 24 biblical scholars and ethicists from 17 countries and planning a conference in Bangalore, India, for July that is to see dozens of prominent academics across Asia gather to discuss doing theology in a cross-cultural and interfaith context. Lúcás was a high school teacher before studying for bachelor’s degrees in philosophy and management, and later a master’s degree in international management. After completing a Bachelor of Sacred Theology at the Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines he earned his licentiate in theology at the Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and completed a Ph.D. in theological ethics at Boston College. He was a recipient of post-doctoral fellowships from Yale and Georgetown universities and held other appointments at the Jesuit School of Theology, Berkeley; Santa Clara University; and the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Outside of his work in theology, Lúcás had an avid interest in photography, and he regularly captured images from the many theological meetings that he was part of around the globe. He spoke fluent Cantonese, English and Khmer, the official language of Cambodia. He is survived by his parents, brother, sister and niece and nephew. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a ainm dílis.
Niall Markey is a former Irish Jesuit novice and former teacher at Belvedere College SJ. He first met Lúcás in the Jesuit Novitiate in Birmingham and that was the beginning of a lasting friendship that transcended geographical borders. On returning from his funeral last week, Niall wrote this moving tribute to his dear friend.
“I am neither a scholar nor a writer. But what you read here is a very humble tribute to my late, great and dear friend, Fr. Lúcás (Yiu Sing Luke) Chan, SJ, who died May 19, 2015.
Believe or not, I learned of Lúcás’ death through a posting on Facebook. I will never forget the sense of shock as my heart sank into despair and disbelief. Lúcás and I were born in the same year with our birthdays only five days apart. He was the youngest. In the early days of our friendship, Lúcás told me that we would always be brothers, no matter where we went or however our lives turned out. That was true. When he told you something, he meant it.
I first met Lúcás at the Jesuit Novitiate in Birmingham, England, in September 1996. On the day he joined the community, he sought me out after supper that evening, and introduced himself as Lúcás, an “Irish/Chinese” Scholastic from Hong Kong. In the course of our conversation, he talked very affectionately about Fr. James Hurley and the other Irish Jesuits who were residing in Hong Kong at that time. As he spoke, it was very evident that he loved them dearly and attributed his Jesuit life to them. Later on that evening as I ascended the stairs to my room on the top floor, I noticed a black and white Irish Road sign on the wall outside my room. The sign read; “Ireland” with the pointer pointing towards my door and beyond. I felt quite elated in thinking that someone was trying to make me feel at home. Turned out, it was Lúcás and he was my new next door neighbor! Within a very short space of time we became good friends and I began to feel a sense of mutuality between us.
In the year that followed, new novices arrived at Manresa House. One in particular was a Scotsman named Mark. Within a short space of time, Mark and I became good friends, through Lúcás. As our friendships grew, Lúcás christened us “The Trinity”. Throughout the years we managed to stay in touch with each other, but not collectively. Lúcás was very instrumental in maintaining contact. Eventually in September, 2012, Lúcás managed to reunite all three of us in Dublin for what he called “The Reunification of the Trinity”.
In late 2001, I left the Society and relocated to New York. About a year after that I received an email from Lúcás informing me that he would be taking up a residency at Boston College. This is where he began his studies in Moral Theology. Over the years of his time in Boston, we stayed in touch. He came on visits. Sometimes for a couple of hours, other times he came for a few days. Nonetheless, they were precious. Last year, on my birthday I received a phone call from Lúcás informing me that he was at Kennedy Airport awaiting a connecting flight to San Francisco. His flight was waylaid and he wondered if I could join him for lunch in the airport. That was one of the greatest birthday surprises I ever received. It done my heart the world of good to see him.
The last time I saw Lúcás was December 30, of last year. I loved our meetings. This time we met up at the beautiful Church of St Ignatius Loyola on Park Avenue in Manhattan. Prior to our meeting he told me to make sure I found a suitable place for us to dine as we would be celebrating Christmas and New Year. Like the food, the conversation was rich and wholesome. Lúcás was in great form – he was actually quite ecstatic. He spoke lovingly of his dear friend, James Keenan, SJ., being eternally grateful to him for believing in him as a moral theologian. I could see that Lúcás had finally come into his own as a Jesuit.
At Lúcás’ funeral in Milwaukee, the congregation consisted of family, friends, colleagues and Jesuits – all suspended in a state of disbelief. Fr. James Keenan, SJ, very appropriately began his homily by referring to Lúcás as a Bridge-Builder. His brother, Charles in his eulogy, described Lúcás as a ‘Gift From God’ to their family. When all was said and done, it was consoling to know that in our gathering, we were all commonly connected through Lúcás’ love for each of us. As I descended from the Church of the Gesu onto West Wisconsin Avenue, I was overcome by a great sense of grief and abandonment. As the evening light cast it shadows upon the churches magnificent facade, I decided to take a walk along the avenue in memory of Lúcás. Upon reaching the entrance door to Marquette Hall, in gratitude, I said a heartfelt farewell to my dear brother and friend.”

◆ The Jesuits of Canada and the US https://jesuits.org/profile-detail/Lucas-Chan
Luke) Chan, S.J., who died at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wis., on May 19, 2015. He was 46 years old, a Jesuit for 22 years, and a priest for 8 years. May he rest in peace.
Lúcás was born in Hong Kong, China, on June 7, 1968, where he spent his childhood and young adult years. Before entering the Singapore novitiate of the Chinese Province of the Society of Jesus in 1993, Lúcás attended Sir Robert Black College of Education (Hong Kong). Following philosophy studies in Hong Kong, Lúcás pursued degrees in education at the University of Birmingham (UK). He completed his first and second cycles of theology at Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines and Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Boston, Mass. Lúcás was ordained to the priesthood on August 26, 2006, and made tertianship in Dublin, Ireland.
Assigned to regency with the Jesuit Service in Cambodia, Lúcás was the first Chinese Jesuit to be missioned to apostolic work outside the province. He served as the acting director for Banteay Prieb, a vocational training school for the handicapped, near Phnom Penh. He completed a final year of regency at Matteo Ricci College in Macau. After completing doctoral studies in biblical ethics at Boston College in 2010, Lúcás held various fellowships and visiting professorships: visiting fellow, Yale Divinity School, New Haven, Conn.; international visiting fellow, Woodstock Theological Center, Washington, DC; adjunct assistant professor, the Chinese University of Hong Kong; international visiting Jesuit scholar, the Jesuit School of Theology, Berkeley, Calif.; and Michael Hurley, S.J., Fellow, Irish School of Ecumenics, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland. In 2014, Marquette University hired Lúcás for a tenure track position in its Theology Department. During his doctoral studies and teaching, Lúcás stayed involved with pastoral work, particularly with Chinese Catholics. He loved presiding and preaching.
Through his formation, studies, and teaching, Lúcás participated in the Jesuits' work in several different countries; this gave him a broad sense of the Society and its universal mission. Being comfortable with a simple lifestyle and possessing a keen intellect complemented his availability to go where he was called and where the need was greatest. A gifted academic, Lúcás was diligent, disciplined, and prodigious in his work. Veteran scholars in his field regarded him among the world's top ten moralists of his generation. At the time of his death, Lúcás had published two books and numerous journal articles. Perhaps it was his being a virtue ethicist that gave him the ability to gently blend intelligence with empathy. He possessed the admirable qualities of patience and understanding, easily formed friendships with people from different cultures, and had a natural
inclination to connect with older people. He always respected the other and was a faithful friend and strong colleague.

Connolly, Patrick J, 1875-1951 Jesuit priest and editor

  • IE IJA J/31
  • Person
  • 14 December 1875-07 March 1951

Born: 14 December 1875, Killomoran, Gort, County Galway
Entered: 07 September 1893, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 26 July 1910, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1913, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 07 March 1951, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson St, Dublin

by 1896 at Roehampton London (ANG) studying
by 1898 at Enghien Belgium (CAMP) studying
by 1900 in Vals France (LUGD) studying
by 1912 at Linz Austria (ASR) making Tertianship

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online
Connolly, Patrick J.
by C. J. Woods

Connolly, Patrick J. (1875–1951), Jesuit priest and journal editor, was born 23 November 1875 at Killomoran, near Gort, Co. Galway, a son of Patrick Connolly, an illiterate farmer, and his wife, Mary (née Connors). He was educated at Mungret College, Limerick. After entering the novitiate of the Society of Jesus at Tullabeg in 1893, he studied in England, at Roehampton, and France, at Vals. He then taught at Mungret, Belvedere and Clongowes, and was ordained priest in 1910.

From July 1914 until September 1950 he was editor of the new Irish Jesuit quarterly, Studies, which he made the most important catholic periodical read by Irish intellectuals. It contained articles on social issues, philosophy, history, economics (all pertaining directly or indirectly to Ireland), and on the state of continental Europe. An example from 1933 is a perceptive assessment of Hitler by D. A. Binchy (qv). Connolly's only original contribution was a two-part article, ‘Karl Lueger’, on the militantly catholic mayor of Vienna (Studies, iii, 1914, 280–91, iv, 1915, 226–49). Having spent a year in Austria after ordination, he greatly admired Lueger, a man of humble origins supported by the petty bourgeoisie and industrial workers, as a daring social reformer and as an opponent of ‘the Liberals and the Jews’. From 1924 until 1949 Connolly was spiritual director of St Joseph's Young Priests Society. On 7 December 1939 he was awarded an honorary D.Litt. by the NUI. Attached, for almost all his career, to the Jesuit house at 35 Lower Leeson St., Dublin, he died 7 March 1951 in Dublin.

GRO; Ir. Times, 8 Dec. 1939, 8 Mar. 1951; Irish Independent, 8 Mar. 1951; Irish Provincial News, vii, no. 3 (July 1951), 76–9; Michael Tierney, ‘Looking back’, Studies, xxxix (1950), 369–72; Michael Tierney, ‘Studies, 1912–1962’, Studies, li (1962), 1–8 (with portrait); J. A. Gaughan, Olivia Mary Taaffe, 1832–1918, foundress of St Joseph's Young Priests Society (1995) (with portrait)

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 26th Year No 3 1951

Obituary :

Father PJ Connolly

Father Patrick Connolly died on Wednesday morning, March 7th, just four weeks after an operation which had seemed to promise complete recovery. His sudden death came as a shock to many of his friends who had been expecting to see him back again in his familiar haunts. To the members of his own community it was the breaking of a very much cherished link with the past. For Father Connolly had come to Leeson Street in the summer of 1914, and had been Editor of Studies for the long and unbroken period of thirty-six years. Though his name no longer appeared as Editor in the status of 1950, he was asked to see the September issue through the press since he had in fact planned it. That was the last issue which came out under his supervişion. In December the new Editor very suitably produced an issue which opened with a most generous and sympathetic notice of Father Connolly's achievement from Dr. Michael Tierney, now President of University College, Dublin and for many years his most faithful and valued contributor. The issue for March had not yet appeared when the final call came. Fittingly enough, life ended within a few months of the end of an unusually long and fruitful editorship.
Father Connolly was a Galwayman, a native of Gort. On the day that he died Sir Joseph Glynn, another native of Gort, died after a long illness in Dublin. The two men, priest and layman, had been associated for many years in the work of Saint Joseph's Young Priests' Society, and their common interest in their native county may well have held them together in this good work for the education of young boys who wished to study for the priesthood. But Father Connolly had another motive for his life-long interest in this work. He himself had been educated in Mungret College, in the great days of Father Vincent Byrne's rectorship, and he never lost an opportunity of helping his Alma Mater when there was question of finding a suitable school for the education of some young aspirant to the priesthood. In later years it was a standing joke in the community to reproach him with having been the Rector's favourite boy during his years at school. He left Mungret in the summer of 1893, and entered the novitiate at Tullabeg in the following September. As a Junior he was sent for two years to the English Juniorate at Manresa, Roehampton, even then it was thought probable that his work would lie in literary activity. From Manresa he went to Vals as a philosopher, then to Mungret, Belvedere and Clongowes for the years of his regency. He was in Milltown Park from 1907 to 1911, being ordained in the summer of 1910. After a year in a Tertian in Austria, he came back to Clongowes as Master of English as 1912.
The Fathers of the Leeson Street community had begun to publish Studies in the Spring of 1912, with Father Corcoran as Editor. It was a false start - so false that it came near to being fatal. At the visitation of 1914 the abandonment of the whole enterprise was seriously considered, and one of the debts which the Irish Province owes to Father T. V. Nolan is that he decided to continue publication, bringing Father Connolly from Clongowes to Dublin for that purpose. Hitherto the Leeson Street community had been responsible for the finances of the new Quarterly. Henceforward the Province made itself responsible for any possible loss. But the appointment of the new Editor soon turned loss into gain.
The first ten or twelve years were the most successful of Father Connolly's long tenure of office as Editor of Studies. They were the years when the first World War was opening new horizons in social and international questions abroad. At home Sinn Fein was sweeping the country, and the Anglo-Irish literary movement of the first two decades of the century was giving place to a more actively political and national campaign. It was an opportunity for any Editor with vision, and Father Connolly's fellow-workers were never slow to remind him that vision was his special gift. Beyond all doubt the quarterly issues of Studies from 1914 to the early 'thirties were a fine achievement, of which lay Editor might be proud. Hardly a name that was known in .the country as writer or thinker is missing from the title-pages of those years. The Civil War took the heart out of the national movement from 1922 onwards, but there was still enough mental energy in the country to make men eager to plan, and put their thoughts on paper. Eoin MacNeill and his pupils had set men studying the history of Ireland from a new angle, and Father Connolly was always willing to print any article that could fairly be described as a serious contribution to the study of Irish history.
As the years went on, the split between the two sections of what had once been the Sinn Fein party tended to harden on party lines, and an Editor was less free in his choice of contributors. During the 'thirties the European scene was intensely dramatic in its swift movements, with the clash of strong personalities and the ever-growing challenge to Catholic principles. Some of the best articles printed in these years dealt rather with European than Irish politics, though there was always a steady stream of articles on Irish social and economic problems as well as on various aspects of Irish history. Then came the second World War, with the declaration of Irish neutrality. No Irish Editor found those years easy to negotiate, and Father Connolly's own mental and physical energies were beginning to fail. The astonishing thing is that he continued for so long to produce, four times a year, new issues of Studies which - though some of them lacked the old brilliance and effervescence - had still a wide range of interest for many readers. The end of the War brought the problems of the post-war world in which we are still struggling to live. It did nothing to lessen the economic difficulties which face all editors and publishers today. Father Connolly struggled manfully against failing health and ever increasing external handicaps. His successor inherits a fine tradition, and may be sure that he inherits also the good-will of many readers and contributors to what has become a national institution.
Father Connolly had been a member of the Leeson Street community for almost forty years at the time of his death, and his well-marked habits and mannerisms had come to be accepted as part of the permanent background of the community's life. In the city his friends were numerous, and they were most loyal to him as he was always loyal to them. It was at the suggestion of a group of these friends that the National University of Ireland conferred the degree of Doctor of Literature Honoris causa on Father Connolly in recognition of his services to Irish letters in the past thirty years. The ceremony took place on December 7th, 1939. In the December issue of Studies Dr. Tierney gave a rapid sketch of the various journalistic ventures that have been associated, at one time or another, with the long history of University College, Dublin. He ended as follows : “Though there has recently been a welcome revival in the kind of serious journalism of which Father Connolly is such a master, the last thirty years has been a hard period for quarterlies. Our present world is far less favourable to their survival than the very different one into which Studies was born. ... The continued existence of Studies at the level at once of scholarly inquiry and of appeal to an educated intelligence to which Father Connolly brought it under unceasing difficulties is a necessity both for the College and the nation it serves. He will, I am sure, ask for no better acknowledgement of the value of his work than the determination to continue it in the spirit he inherited from predecessors stretching back to Newman, and has handed on invigorated and enriched by his own long years of unselfish devotion”.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Patrick Connolly SJ 1875-1951
Fr Patrick Connolly was born in Gort, County Galway on December 14th 1875. He received his early education at Mungret College and after he entered the Society.

As a scholastic and as a priest he taught English at Clongowes, where he showed his fine literary taste, and high standard of writing. “Studies, the contemporary Review of the National University had been founded in 1912, and for some years run an editorial board with no great success. Indeed, things had come to such an impasse, that there was question of ceasing publication. To the credit of the Provincial FR TV Nolan was the decision to carry on, and to his greater credit and discernment was his appointment of Fr Connolly as Editor in chief. Almost immediately it began its course as a high class review, which was to have a great place, not only in the cultural life of Ireland, but also to be accepted by the leading Universities of the world.

Fr Connolly was a born Editor. He made the maintenance and advance of Studies is life-work. Questions of Irish interest, political, historical, economic predominated, but it remained a Catholic review and had articles of Church interest. This good wrk that Fr Connolly kept going through the gravest of crises – two world ward, the struggle for independence at home, the economic war and various smaller domestic storms. He did all of this for well nigh 40 years.

But Studies did not absorb all his energies. For many years he had a deep and practical interest in St Joseph’s Young Priests Society. He was the Spiritual Father and examined candidates and was accustomed to visit students in their various colleges. Personally he was a bit odd, but a great favourite, especially in Leeson Street, where he was somewhat of an institution. When he explained that the old “characters” of the Province had disappeared, his hearers would smile and remark to one another, that while he lived, the race of “characters”would not be extinct. He had a genuine affective love for the Society. As an appreciation of his distinguished services he received an honorary degree of Litt from the National University.

He died on March 7th 1951, after an operation which seemed to promise complete recovery.

Corcoran, Timothy, 1872-1943, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/49
  • Person
  • 17 January 1872-23 March 1943

Born: 17 January 1872, Roscrea, County Tipperary
Entered: 06 December 1890, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 01 August 1909, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 21 November 1938, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 23 March 1943, St Vincent's Nursing Home, Dublin

part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death

Older brother of John Corcoran - RIP 1940

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1902 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Corcoran, Timothy
by Patrick Maume

Corcoran, Timothy (1872–1943), priest and educationist, was born 17 January 1872 at Honeymount, Dunkerrin, Co. Tipperary, eldest son of Thomas Corcoran, a large farmer, and Alice Corcoran (née Gleeson). His father was locally prominent in the Land League and GAA, and first chairman of Tipperary (North Riding) county council. Corcoran was educated at Lisduff and Roscrea national schools, Clongowes (whose history he later wrote), and the Jesuit novitiate at Tullabeg, which he entered in 1890. He taught classics and history at Clongowes 1894–1901, followed by studying philosophy and education at Milltown Park (first-class honours BA (RUI), 1903) and Louvain. His Belgian experience influenced his preference for European over British educational models, and his support (albeit limited) for recruitment in 1914. In 1909 he became first professor of education at UCD (1909–42). His teaching positions brought contact with the nationalist elite. Corcoran served on the Molony viceregal commission on intermediate education (1918–19) and advised the dáil commission on secondary education (1921–2) and national programme conferences on primary instruction (1920–21, 1925–6). He successfully advocated imposition of Irish-only teaching on primary schools whose pupils, like Corcoran, knew no Irish.

Corcoran saw education as inculcating received knowledge by memorisation and the authority of the teacher. He opposed ‘progressive’ teaching methods as pandering to corrupt and wilful human nature. He idealised medieval education, claiming it created a meritocratic elite, and denounced the reformation as an aristocratic takeover. Corcoran attacked John Henry Newman's (qv) views on university education, believing the disinterested pursuit of knowledge impossible, and holding that universities existed to transmit vocational skills. He generally rationalised existing educational practices, projected on to the medieval and Gaelic past.

Corcoran edited many classical and other texts for school use, serving as general editor of Browne & Nolan's intermediate textbook series. He published numerous text selections and educational pamphlets (some in Latin) in limited editions for UCD students. His major publications concerned the history of Irish education: Studies in the history of classical teaching, Irish and continental, 1500–1700 (Dublin, 1911); State policy in Irish education, A.D. 1536 to 1816. Exemplified in documents. . . with an introduction (Dublin, 1916); Education systems in Ireland form the close of the middle ages (Dublin, 1928); The Clongowes Record, 1814 to 1932. With introductory chapters on Irish Jesuit educators 1564 to 1813 (Dublin, [1932]); Some lists of catholic lay teachers and their illegal schools in the later penal times, with historical commentary (Dublin, 1932). He argued that eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century hedge-schools were slandered by British officialdom and superior to the national schools that replaced them, a thesis developed and modified by his pupil P. J. Dowling. Corcoran was a founding member of the Irish Manuscripts Commission. He wrote extensively for Studies (which he helped to found) and the Irish Monthly on educational and historical subjects. He has been accused of misrepresentation of evidence, and of supplying students with ‘cribs’ in examinations.

Despite early praise for the exploits of Clongownians in the British army, Corcoran soon moved to supporting Sinn Féin, and took a leading role in attempting to organise a ‘National Academy of Ireland’ in protest at the expulsion of Eoin MacNeill (qv) from the Royal Irish Academy after the 1916 rising. Corcoran opposed the treaty, and became one of the most extreme nationalist spokesmen of the 1920s through his contributions to the monthly Catholic Bulletin from the early 1920s until its cessation in 1939. The Catholic Bulletin (founded 1911) was noted for outspoken republicanism and long-winded and scurrilous abuse of opponents; it supported Fianna Fáil from 1926. It denounced the Cumann na nGaedheal government as culturally and economically subservient to protestant and West British interests. Corcoran wrote for the Bulletin under numerous pseudonyms (notably ‘Inis Cealtra’, ‘Conor Malone’ ‘J. A. Moran’, ‘Art Ua Meacair’, ‘Momoniensis’, ‘Dermot Curtin’, ‘Donal MacEgan’, and ‘Molua’), partly to avoid being held accountable by religious superiors. He used the Bulletin to carry on vendettas against academic opponents such as the UCD economics professor and advocate of free trade, George O'Brien (qv) (‘the Hamlet of Earlsfort Terrace. . . economist in chief to Green Grazierdom’). The weekly Irish Statesman edited by A E (qv) and sponsored by Horace Plunkett (qv) was particularly targeted for its criticism of literary censorship and compulsory Irish, its support of free trade, and its defence of the view that the Anglo-Irish tradition was a distinctive and legitimate element of Irish civilisation. Corcoran declared in numerous articles on ‘squalid ascendancy history’ that the mere existence of an Anglo-Irish protestant tradition implied a continued claim to ascendancy; only assimilation to catholic and Gaelic Irishness was acceptable. Protestants should be excluded from public positions that might endanger the faith of catholics. Protestant nationalists were wolves in sheep's clothing, catholic clerics of West British tendencies were enemies of faith and fatherland, and English catholics were hardly catholic at all (notably for their failure to establish an independent catholic university; Corcoran believed catholics should be forbidden to attend Oxford and Cambridge). Corcoran's views and language represent the extreme development of catholic and nationalist positions in nineteenth-century religious and political conflicts over land, education, and nationality.

From 1938 Corcoran developed arteriosclerosis and suffered from partial paralysis. He died from cardiac failure at St Vincent's Nursing Home, Dublin, on 23 March 1943.

Catholic Bulletin; D. H. Akenson, review of P. J. Dowling, The hedge schools of Ireland (paperback ed., 1968), IHS, xvi, no. 62 (Sept. 1968), 226–9; E. Brian Titley, Church, state, and the control of schooling in Ireland 1900–1944 (1983); Séamus Ó Riain, Dunkerrin: a parish in Ely O'Carroll (1988); Brian P. Murphy, ‘The canon of Irish cultural history; some questions’, Studies, lxxvii, no. 305 (spring 1988), 68–83; John Joseph O'Meara, The singing-masters (1990)

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 1st Year No 1 1925

Fr. Lambert McKenna is Chairman of a committee appointed by the Ministry of Education for the purpose of reporting on the National Programme of Primary Education. During the meetings of the Committee, very valuable evidence was given by Father T. Corcoran

Irish Province News 2nd Year No 3 1927

University Hall :
Fr Corcoran has added another to his remarkable series of works concerned with the history of education. In the preceding volume (Renovatio Litteraruml he gave, in their own admirable Latin, the educational theories of the sixteenth-century humanists. In this volume (Litters Renatael he describes, again in the language of the original documents, the realisation of these theories in the Ratio Studiorum of the Society. The work is invaluable for all the students of the history and practice of education.

Irish Province News 6th Year No 1 1931
Brussels Congress :
Fr. Rector (John Coyne) and Fr. J. O'Meara (Louvain) represented the College at the First International Congress of Catholic Secondary Education, held at Brussels July 28 . August 2. Fr, O'Meara read a paper on State Aid in Irish Secondary Education. Our Irish Jesuit Colleges were well represented in the Exhibition organised by Fr. Corcoran S. J.

Irish Province News 8th Year No 4 1933

Father T. Corcoran's labours in connection with the examinations for the Higher Diploma had scarcely concluded when he had to betake himself to Holland to preside at the second International Congress of Catholic Secondary Education. The meetings of the Congress took place at the Hague each day from 31st .July to 5th August.
Their Excellencies, the Bishops of Holland, were patrons of the Congress, which was attended by some 350 delegates representing the leading Catholic countries. Among the delegates were about 45 members of the Society from lands outside Holland. Prominent among the visitors were the Provincial of the Paris Province, with various Rectors and Prefects of Studies from our French Colleges. Père Yoes de la Brière, the Rectors of Brussels, Namur, Liege and other Belgian Colleges, Fathers Errandonea, Herrera and others from Spain, the French Oratorian Sabatier and various distinguished lay-men from Germany and Italy.
Cardinal Pacelli, in the name of the Holy Father, sent a long and cordial telegram of good wishes to the Congress , also the Nuncio Apostolic in Holland, who was prevented by serious illness from attending in person.
In the absence of the Nuncio the final allocution was delivered by the Bishop of Haarlem, after the Rector Magnificus of the University of Nijmegen and Father Corcoran, as President of the Congress had already spoken. Mr. J. O'Meara from Louvain Messrs. B. Lawler and C. Lonergan from Valkenburg acted as assistants to Father Corcoran at the Hague.
A splendid paper on “The Present Condition of Secondary Education in Ireland” was read by Dr. John McQuaid, the President of Blackrock College. All accounts agree in stating that the Congress was a brilliant success.
As the proceedings at the Hague coincided with the Biennial Conference of the World Federation of Education Associations, Father Corcoran was unable to be present at the functions in Dublin, but an important paper from his pen was read by Mrs McCarville, Lecturer in English in University College, Dublin. This paper expounded the Catholic philosophy of Education.

Irish Province News 10th Year No 1 1935

Works by Father Timothy Corcoran SJ

  1. Studies in the History of Classical Education, Irish and Continental AS 1500-1700
  2. Renovatio Litterarum - Academic Writers of the Renaissance, AD 1450-1600, A.D. 14,50-I6ro, with Documentary Exercises, illustrative of the views of Italian and French Humanists.
  3. Renate Litterae - Latin Texts and Documentary Exercises exhibiting the Evolution of the Ratio Studiomm as regards Humanistic Education, A.D, 1540-1600
  4. Plato : De Juvenyute Instituenda - Greek Texts, from Dialogues other than The Republic, with Introduction and Documented Exercises
  5. Quintilianus Restitutiae Ltinis Preceptor - Latin Texts with Introduction and Exercises on Quintilan's influence on Renaissance Education
  6. Newman's Theory of Liberal Education -The three Discourses on Liberal Knowledge, as in the text of the First Edition Dublin, 1852 , with Preface, Historical and Philosophical Introduction, and Documentary Exercises
  7. Education Systems in Ireland A.D. 1500-1832 - Selected Texts. with Introduction
  8. O’Connell and Catholic Education - Papers for the Centenary Year of Emancipation. With a Portrait hitherto unpublished (out of print)
  9. Catholic Lay Teachers. Regional Lists, A.D. 1711-1824 - with Historical Commentary, Illustrations, and Three Maps
  10. The Clongowes Record, A.D. 1814 to 1932 - With Introductory Chapters on Irish Jesuit Educators A.D. 1564-1813 with 40 pages of Illustrations outside the Text
  11. Narrative Text, with Supplemental Documents for Professional Students of Education, issued separately.

Irish Province News 18th Year No 1 1943

Presentation to Fr. Corcoran :
The Chancellor of the National University, Mr. de Valera, the Minister of Education, Mr. Derris, and the Ceann Comhairle, Mr. Fahy, were among the large attendance at a ceremony at 86 St. Stephen's Green, on Saturday, 12th December, when Fr. Corcoran was presented with a portrait of himself by Sean Keating. R.H.A., on the occasion of his retirement from the Chair of Education at U.C.D., which he has held since 1909.
Senator Michael Hayes, making the presentation, said it had been his privilege to be a student, a colleague, and close friend of Fr. Corcoran, a friend who, like many another, owed much to his counsel and encouragement. He was being honoured that day as a professor, a guide, and an example to research students, a scholar and a clear sighted lover of Ireland. He had always been. careful, methodical, meticulous, accurate over a wide range of learning, punctual to an unusual degree, and redoubtable in argument. No professor could have been kinder, more considerate and more helpful to his students. The portrait by Sean Keating was a fitting tribute. The artist had caught the spirit of his sitter and had given a work worthy of his subject. On behalf of Fr. Corcoran he returned the most sincere thanks to his many old students, who had contributed to the Presentation.

Irish Province News 18th Year No 3 1943
Obituary :
Father Timothy Corcoran SJ (1872-1943)
Father Corcoran died at St. Vincent's Nursing Home, Dublin, on March 23rd, 1943. He had been ill for about a month and during the past year his general strength had been failing rapidly. He had resigned his post as Professor of Education in U.C.D. in September, 1942.
Father Corcoran was born at Honeymount, Roscrea, on 17th January, 1872. He went as a boy to Tullabeg in 1885 for the last year of the old school's separate existence, and was transferred to Clongowes in the following year. During the next four years he won high distinction as a prize-winner and medallist under the Intermediate System laying a wide foundation for his future studies in Classics, History and English Literature. He entered the novitiate at Tullabeg on 6th December, 1890. Within a few months his younger brother John (the future Master of Novices tor the Australian Mission and Vice-Province) followed him to Tullabeg. They were together in Tullabeg until 1894.
From his Juniorate Mr. Corcoran went direct to Clongowes, where he taught for seven consecutive years (1894-1901). These were the years when Clongowes was leading the country in the Intermediate prize-lists. under the stimulating direction of Father James Daly, and Mr. Corcoran was one of a small group of “the experts” whose abilities as teachers were mainly responsible for these successes Many Fathers of the Irish Province have vivid recollections of his classes in the old Junior. Middle and Senior Grades. When he died. Father Corcoran left behind him among his private papers a small note-book in which he had noted the name and class of every boy he had taught, with a note as to their later careers. The letters “S.J.” are common after many of these names. Others went to Medicine, the Bar or one or other of the professions at home or abroad. The notebook. was thus a miniature record of the careers of a very representative group of the alumni of Clongowes in the last years of the past century. Those who remembered Mr. Corcoran’s classes in his last two years (he returned to Clongowes from Louvain in 1904, and taught for two more years before his Theology at Milltown Park) will remember a tradition that he never “sent a boy up”, and indeed the legend round his name in those later years was sufficient to guarantee due awe and respect. But Father Corcoran, in later and more reminiscent years, would recall earlier days when he had won his control over difficult classes by the simple method of prescribing “twelve” at regular intervals to boys whose habitual record was always a justification for drastic action.
From 1904 Father Corcoran studied Philosophy at Louvain, taking his B.A. degree at the same time under the old Royal University. He was never a metaphysician, and Belgian Jesuits of later years. who had been his very much younger contemporaries at this time, remembered a solitary and imposing figure, who walked in stately majesty round the small garden reserved for the Philosophers, and seemed to take little interest in life's petty round. But Louvain has seldom had a more loyal past student than Father Corcoran. On more than one occasion he contrived to secure his own nomination as the National University's representative at the public functions which have marked the various stages of Louvain's recent history, and he collected an unusually fine series of old and modern works on the University’s history. A student of Louvain who came to Ireland could always count on Father Corcoran's s support for any scheme which involved full recognition of his studies abroad. Indeed he used to boast he had persuaded the National University to give Louvain a recognition which was denied to Oxford and Cambridge.
After his nine years at Clongowes, Father Corcoran went to Milltown Park for three years, in the old “short course” of pre-Codex days. Even during his course at Milltown he was marked out as the probable holder of a chair in the new University.
Father Corcoran had applied for the post of Professor of the Theory and Practice of Education (then a relatively new subject in the more modern Universities), and he was appointed as the first Professor of this subject during the winter of 1908-9. He had taken his B.A.. with first place and first-class Hons. in History in 1903, and his Higher Diploma in Education in 1906, with a special gold medal. He was also University medallist in Latin verse and English verse. Apart from his long years of experience in the Honours classes at Clongowes and his exceptional gift of methodical teaching Father Corcoran had a quite unusual gift for map-making in illustration of his class-work. When he was being considered as a candidate for the Chair of Education he organised an exhibit of these maps, and tales are still told of the assistance given him by his friends at Milltown Park in that first venture.
There is no space here to record the many achievements which have made Father Corcoran's long tenure of this post (1909-42) one of the memorable phases in the life of University College, Dublin. It seems hard to believe that the difficulty at first was to get any student at all. Ever willing to oblige fellow-Jesuit Farther Darlington - who had himself retired from the University in 1909 - wrote round to suggest a course in Education to past students of the College. A small group was got together, and Mr. Eamonn De Valera’s name is claimed as his first student. Professor W. J . Williams, who was later to succeed him in the chair, was another of the same group. When Father Corcoran retired in 1942 the annual classes were seldom less than a hundred and were often very much more numerous. Public tributes have been paid by many of his past students not only to Father Corcoran’s gifts as a teacher and organiser, but also to his unfailing willingness to help any student whose need of help was brought to his notice. For more than thirty years Father Corcoran made a special study of the history of Catholic education, with special reference to Ireland and to the tradition of the Jesuit schools. His “Studies in the History of Classical Education” (1911) won him the degree of D.Litt. - it is a study of the Irish Jesuit Father William Bathe's “Janus Linguarum”. The publication of his “State Policy in Irish Education” (1916) established Father Corcoran’s reputation for pioneer work in a new field of Irish historical study. The book is now very rare, for the whole stock was burnt in Easter Week, but Father Corcoran used most of the materials in this book as a basis for his lectures on Irish educational history and he could justly claim that he had stimulated more than one good student to produce work on similar lines under his direction. The Clongowes Record appeared in 1932, and was in large part a study of the old Jesuit Ratio Studiorum as applied in pre-Intermediate days at Clongowes. Soon afterwards one of Father Corcoran's ablest students Father Allan P. Farrell, published an important work on the history of the early Ratio Studiorum (The Jesuit Code of Liberal Education) which he had originally prepared as a thesis for the Ph.D. degree under Father Corcoran’s personal direction at University College, Dublin. Father Farrell’s book is generally counted the ablest work that has yet appeared on this important phase of early Jesuit history. For many years Father Corcoran also issued, for private use in his own class-room, a series of important volumes on various aspects of educational theory and history which have had a very great influence on educational thought and policy in this country. “Renovatio Litterarum” (1925) and “Renatae Litterae” (1926) dealt with the main aspects of Renaissance thought and the origins of Christian humanism in education. His volume on “Education Systems in Ireland” (1928) repeated a good deal of what was in the earlier volume, now inaccessible on “State Policy in Irish Education”. A volume on “Newman’s Theory of Liberal Education” (1929) is a highly controversial account of the ideas set forth by Newman when he was asked by the Irish Bishops to organise Catholic University in this country. There were also volumes on Plato, Quintilian, the Irish School-teachers in Penal Days etc. In 1938 Rev. Fr. General promoted him to solemn profession of four Vows in recognition of his “Eximium Scribendi talentum”.
Father Corcoran's work on behalf of Catholic education was revised abroad as well as at home. At home he was an influential and very active member of all the various Educational Commissions which have marked out the new tendencies of educational policy in this country since 1909. He attended Catholic Educational Congresses at Brussels and Amsterdam in the years before the war, and was elected President of the Amsterdam Congress. Our late Father General was anxious to have the benefit of his advice and experience when he was working on a scheme for the reorganisation of studies in the Juniorates of the whole Society, and arrangements had been made to enable Father Corcoran to spend some months in Rome during the academic year 1938-9. But the imminent danger of war caused a postponement of this scheme, and Father Corcoran never saw Rome. His own health was beginning to fail about this time, and it became more and more evident that the strain of continuing his work for the large classes in U.C.D. was beyond his powers. But Father Corcoran was not easily induced to surrender to any sign of physical weakness, and the illness of his colleague, Mr. W. J. Williams, threw extra work upon him at a time when he himself was obviously in need of assistance. The last two or three years of his active work were thus a painful struggle against a breakdown that all who saw him knew could not long be delayed. A paralytic stroke, shortly before Christmas 1941 ended his teaching days, but he did not formally resign his position as Professor until the following September.
Meanwhile a committee had been formed among his past-students to present him with a portrait-sketch by Mr. Sean Keating, as a token of their high regard for his long years of service. The presentation of this portrait was almost the last public function which he attended in the University, though he continued to the end to take an active interest in all its doings. He was particularly proud of the success of the new Graduates Club in 85 and 86 Stephen's Green, towards which he himself had contributed much useful work as a member of the Senate and Finance Committee of the University. His death was the occasion of many touching tributes from past students, men and women, who recalled his stimulating influence as a teacher and his personal interest on their behalf through so many years. A characteristic sign of Father Corcoran's personal kindness towards those who helped him in his work is the fact that the Hall-porters in the College felt his death as the loss of a personal friend. He had never failed to thank them in person for anything they had done, and his almost miraculous punctuality had made their task easier in a world where punctuality is not always guaranteed! R.l.P.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Timothy Corcoran SJ 1872-1943
Fr Timothy Corcoran will always be remembered, both inside and outside the Society as the great authority in educational matters. He was Professor of Education and University College from 1909-1942. His published works include “Studies in the History of Classical Education” and “State Policy in Irish Education”.

Born in Roscrea on January 7th 1872, he was educated at Tullabeg and Clongowes. Brilliant as a boy in Classics, History and English Literature, he pursued and taught the same subjects as a Jesuit with equally brilliant success. It could be impossible to give an adequate account of the extent of Fr Corcoran’s influence on University life and on his contemporaries and on current affairs. He was intensely interested in all things Irish, especially our Irish games, and was proud to be the promoter of such in College.

His manner by some was considered brusque, and he certainly did not suffer fools gladly, yet he was capable of arousing almost fanatical admiration in his pupils. “If I had my way, there would be a public statue of Fr Corcoran in University College”, said one of his illustrious pupils, many of whom became the leaders of the Nation.

In 1938, by solemn decree of His Paternity Fr Ledóchowski, he was promoted to the solemn profession of four vows, in recognition of his “eximus talentaum scribendi”.

He died at St Vincent’s Nursing Home on March 23rd 1943

Cremins, Richard, 1922-2012, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/751
  • Person
  • 24 August 1922-21 February 2012

Born: 24 August 1922, Dublin
Entered: 05 October 1943, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1955, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1961
Died: 21 February 2012, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin - Zambia-Malawi Province (ZAM)

Part of the St Ignatius community, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin at the time of death.

Transcribed : HIB to ZAM 03/12/1969

◆ Companions in Mission 1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Note from Arthur J Clarke Entry
During his six years as rector, he was blessed with such outstanding heads of Canisius as Dick Cremins and Michael J Kelly. Arthur's vision for Canisius as a leading secondary school was influenced by his experience of Clongowes Wood College in Ireland. First, he wanted a proper house for the community. Though the actual building was the responsibility of Fr McCarron and Br Pat McElduff, the siting and design of the spacious community house are largely Arthur’s.

◆ Irish Jesuit Missions : https://www.jesuitmissions.ie/news/203-missionary-experience-of-the-late-fr-richard-cremins

Missionary Experience of the late Fr. Richard Cremins
Father Richard Cremins, SJ died on 21st February 2012 in Cherryfield Nursing Home in Milltown Park after a long illness. The funeral mass took place on Friday 24th February in Milltown Park Chapel, after which Fr. Cremins was buried in Glasnevin Cemetery.
Fr. Cremins spent over 50 years working as a missionary in Zambia until a stroke brought him back to Ireland in 2006 where he remained until his recent death.
Fr. Richard Cremins was born in 1922 and attended Blackrock College in Dublin. He went on to study at university for 3 years before making the decision to become a Jesuit priest after being impressed by the spirit among the students of Milltown Park. Fr. Cremins taught in Belvedere College for 2 years before he was ordained in 1955. In 1957 Fr. Cremins was sent out to Zambia, then Northern Rhodesia, to work in the Chikuni Mission. He spent several months learning the local language, Tonga and was mainly involved with the primary schools in the area. He spent a year travelling around the country finding schools a job which required him to learn a second language, Bemba. In 1964, Fr. Cremins was sent to Monze to step in as principal of the secondary school for 6 months. He remained in the post for four and a half years until the appointment of Michael Kelly as principal. Fr. Cremins spoke fondly of his time as parish priest in Monze. “They were lovely people. Very nice” he said. He felt it was important to value the customs and traditions of the people in the area. He recounted an early experience he had of a woman who was having trouble with her husband and he had been asked to step in. He sat with them in their family home but realized that his presence there was enough. “They had their own way of settling these things. So I never tried to interfere and just let things take their course”. Fr. Cremins kept this stance throughout his time in Zambia. He did a lot of work in development in the area which included the setting up of Church councils in each area and also the translation of the Bible into Tonga. This occurred in 1970 after the events of Vatican II.
Fr. Cremins was most noted for his work in AIDS prevention and development in Zambia. He went to Lusaka, the capital, in 1970 and spent 12 years there working on development with particular attention given to the introduction of natural family planning. This followed the work of Doctor Sister Miriam Duggan who wanted to introduce the idea to the area. After the implementation of a programme in Lusaka, Fr. Cremins then moved to Malwai in 1990 where he spent 12 years working on a similar project resulting in the establishment of FAMLI. In 2004, he helped to set up an AIDS programme called Youth Alive which aimed at educating young people in Malawi about the risks of AIDS.
Fr. Richard Cremins enjoyed his work as a missionary and spoke positively of his experiences abroad. “I always had a principle that if you have to do something you might as well enjoy it and I always enjoyed my work whatever it was".

https://www.jesuitmissions.ie/news/225-fr-richard-cremins-sj-1922-2012

Fr. Richard Cremins, SJ 1922-2012
Dick was raised in Dublin during the post independence and post civil war years. He attended the Holy Ghost Fathers' Blackrock College and then proceeded to do undergraduate studies at University College Dublin (UCD). Afterwards he began legal studies spending one year at King's Inn, passing his first bar exam with first class honours. He was a formidable debater and was elected president of the LH Society (Literary and Historical Society), well known for the who's who of Irish politicians and professionals who had been members in their younger days. Dick resigned as president of the Society and discontinued his legal studies to join the Society in 1943. He followed the usual course of studies in Ireland doing regency at Belvedere and Mungret Colleges. After theology at Milltown Park he was ordained a priest in 1955.
In response to a request from Father General, the Irish Province formally assumed responsibility in 1949/1950 for missionary work in much of the Southern Province of Northern Rhodesia (later to become the independent country of Zambia). This led to the establishment of the Chikuni Mission in the Southern Province with a procure in the capital, Lusaka. Building on the great accomplishments of the Zambezi Mission and of Jesuits from the Polish-Krakow Province who had laid the foundations of Church presence in this area, the new arrivals for the Chikuni Mission quickly found themselves engaged in the work of mission development. This they did through the establishment of parishes, the consolidation and expansion of secondary and teacher training institutions, the management and growth of an extensive network of primary schools, and the advancement of women and lay leadership in the Church.
Throughout the 35 years of his period in Northern Rhodesia/Zambia, where he arrived in September 1957, Dick Cremins found himself involved in each one of these works, apart from teacher training. On completion of a period learning chiTonga, the major local language used in the Chikuni Mission territory, his first assign- ment was as Manager of Schools, in charge of supervising, improving and expanding the large network of Catholic primary schools for which the Mission was responsible. In an era when Church presence in an area tended to be closely linked to educational presence through a Church-managed primary school, this involved much hard bargaining with similarly placed representatives from other Christian Churches and colonial officials. Though he threw himself into this work with enormous verve, this was something that did not fit well with Dick's broader ecumenical vision. Neither did it give much scope for his manifest abilities, including his sharp understanding of the needs of a colonial territory that sooner rather than later would become independent.
The situation changed for him in 1959 when he was appointed as Principal of Canisius College, a Jesuit boys' secondary school which had commenced in 1949, much to the displeasure of the colonial authorities who protested at the time that the territory already had a secondary school for boys and so did not need a second one. But by 1959 the winds of change were already blowing in Northern Rhodesia and Dick saw it as his duty, not to challenge the colonial authorities, but with their (sometimes grudging) financial support to develop a school that would respond to the territory's future needs for well qualified human resources. His task in doing so was facilitated by the transfer of the teacher training component from Canisius to the newly established Charles Lwanga Teacher Training College nearby, leaving Dick free to promote a programme of expanding boarding and teaching facilities (especially science laboratories and a library) at Canisius and to increase the number of staff.
A very significant development during the four-and-a-half years of Dick's tenure as Principal of Canisius was the commencement of 6th Form (A-level). Those who completed this programme would have spent almost fifteen years in school - this in a territory where by 1963 less than 1,000 (up to 200 of them from Canisius itself) had completed even twelve years in school. Equally significant, and an early sign of what would be a major con-cern throughout the rest of Dick's life, was his determination that girls should benefit from this development and be able to attain the highest possible level of education. This resulted in Canisius becoming the only school in Northern Rhodesia that offered 6 h Form education to both girls and boys - a noteworthy advance not only towards gender equity but also in Jesuit understanding of the need to ensure that the equality between women and men became a lived reality.
A further development was the active recruitment of a large number of lay teachers for the staffing of the expanding Canisius College. But more was at work in Dick's case, for here he found it possible to give expression to his pre-Vatican II vision of increasing the role of the laity in Church affairs. The strength of Dick's convictions in this area led to his appointment in 1964 as parish priest of the town of Monze and subsequently as chaplain to the Lay Apostolate Movement in the newly established Diocese of Monze. That same year, Northern Rhodesia's colonial status ended when it became the independent country of Zambia. Dick identified wholeheartedly with the new State and as soon as it was possible for him to do so adopted Zambian citizenship, even though this necessitated renouncing his status as a citizen of Ireland, the country of his birth. For the rest of his life, Dick remained a Zambian, a man committed to improving the status of women, and a man passionately concerned to give practical expression to Vatican II's vision of the importance of the laity and the involvement of the Church in the development of peoples.
Dick worked indefatigably for six years as parish priest of Monze town and for five years as promoter of the lay apostolate throughout the diocese. An outstanding legacy to his term as parish priest was the establishment by the Holy Rosary Sisters of Monze Mission Hospital. Dick always proved himself a staunch ally of these Sisters, some of them still fresh from the Biafran war in Nigeria. Always conscious of the dignity of women and the active role that lay and religious women could play in the Church, he supported the Sisters with deep practical love and respect (which they in turn generously reciprocated). Dick pursued these apostolic commitments in Monze Diocese at such expense to himself that he had to spend the greater part of 1976 rebuilding his health. When he was strong enough to return to Zambia late that year, his enduring commitment to the development of the laity resulted in his transfer to Lusaka and appointment, on behalf of the Catholic Hierarchy, as national chaplain for the lay apostolate and secretary for development. For the next seven years he spent the greater part of his time educating and training the laity, mobilising and energising lay groups, and advocating on their behalf. His constant concern was to ensure that Vatican II's vision of the role of the laity became a reality energetically adopted and practised, not only by the ordained ministry of the Church and by members of the Society, but also by lay-persons themselves. These years also saw his trail-blazing support for the National Council of Catholic Women in Zambia, with his unflagging insistence to the women who asked him to implement some of their ideas, "No; this is for you to do, yours are the voices that should be heard." His belief in the power of women was remarkably vindicated in 1982 when, because of the outspoken opposition of the Catholic Women's League to the Zambian Government's inclusion of communist ideology in the curriculum for schools at all levels, the Government capitulated and backed off from this development.
Dick's experience and reflections during this time brought into sharper focus for him the importance of the family. A prime concern here was to enable women to control the number of children they bore while observing the teaching of the encyclical Humanae Vitae about contraception. He was motivated here not just by loyalty to Church teaching, but also by his commitment to improving the lot of women and his anguish at the suffering women endured in bearing more children than their health, their means, the well-being of their already-born children or their prospects as persons who were fully equal to men, could sustain. He was further energised by his deep-seated conviction on the supremacy of human life and hence was driven by the imperative of preventing abortion and opposing its legalisation.
Both of these concerns led Dick to become a protagonist for natural family planning as a way that respected human dignity, while enabling women take more control of their lives and avoid abortions by not having unwanted pregnancies. He became skilled on the medical and social aspects of natural family planning and was soon recognised as a national and international authority in this area. His views did not always find acceptance with others, but this did not diminish their respect for his integrity, the consistency of his approach, and his manifest commitment to bettering the condition of women. His involvement in the area of natural family planning be- came more all-consuming when in 1983 he was appointed as Director of Zambia's Family Life Movement. He was to remain in this position until his appointment to Malawi, the second country that constitutes the Zambia- Malawi Province, ten years later. During this Lusaka period Dick also served for six years as Superior of the Jesuit community of St. Ignatius. Throughout the latter years of that time, St. Ignatius' was the base for the newly established Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection, a faith and social justice think-tank which received wholehearted support from Dick's wisdom, experience, and vision.
In 1993 Dick was sent to Lilongwe in Malawi to set up a Jesuit residence there. Since a number of Jesuits were already working in the Malawian seminaries, Malawi was now recognised as part of the Zambian province, but there was no specifically Jesuit residence there. Dick first stayed with the Kiltegan Fathers for a few months as he surveyed the houses which came on the market in Lilongwe. He was responsible for the purchase and rehabilitation of the present residence of Our Lady of the Way, more usually known as 9/99, the official address. This house became the rallying point for a scattered Jesuit community whose members were working hundreds of kilometres away to the four points of the compass (Zomba, Kasungu, Kachebere and Mangochi).
However 9/99 was not merely a convenient staging point - one of the attractions was meeting Dick. At breakfast and especially after evening meal, one could be sure of a stimulating discussion arising on some point relevant to our mission that had been noticed by Dick and obviously pondered over by him. One might not always agree with Dick's point of view, but that made the discussions all the more stimulating. Dick continued the family apostolate he had animated so well in Lusaka and set up an official NGO called FAMLI, supported by overseas aid.
In Lilongwe in 2007, Dick experienced a massive stroke that ultimately led to his return to Ireland and admission to Cherryfield, the Irish Province's nursing home for infirm, disabled and recuperating Jesuits. Here Dick was to remain until his death in February 2012. But his approach to his transformed conditions was not one of self-pity. Instead, with characteristic determination and enormous courage, he succeeded in teaching himself to speak with some sort of clarity and in making himself mobile with the aid of a "walker" that had been designed according to his specifications for a person whose right hand was crippled. The strength of his resolve and his unfailing commitment to his priesthood were shown by the way he struggled every week to serve as principal celebrant at the community Mass. Despite his limited mobility, he succeeded in attending outside lectures and functions. He taught himself to use a laptop by tapping out messages with one finger of his left hand. And in an effort to build up a sense of camaraderie among his fellow-residents in Cherryfield and the wider community of Jesuits living in the Dublin area, he organised Scrabble and draughts competitions.
Dick put his hard-won computer skills to good use in these final years. From the darkness that must have enshrouded his own life, he regularly sent warm and supportive messages to colleagues who, like himself, were experiencing the cloud of unknowing. But even more, despite his limitations, he continued to press for the better- ment of women, loyal adherence to the teachings of Humanae Vitae, ever greater involvement in the official Church on the part of "outstanding lay Catholics who are to be found as leaders in every walk of life," and advocacy for a Church "where St. Peter might feel at home. "At a meeting just six weeks before his death, he expressed concern that Cherryfield might be obtaining its medical supplies from a pharmacy where the "morning-after" pill could also be purchased. His spirited contributions continued after his death - nine days after he died, The Furrow, the respected religious journal from Maynooth, published his article in support of the Irish government's decision to close its Embassy to the Vatican as he saw this as a step in the direction of making it possible for the Church to remain true to the simplicity of the Gospel.
Throughout his long and very full life, Dick Cremins emerged as a gentle person, kind and peaceful, who lived his life joyfully in the service of others and in pursuit of the highest ideals. At times, people could be upset by his sabre-sharp remarks or forthright statement of his views. But behind these there always lay his fearlessness in challenging accepted points of wisdom, his passion to see the Kingdom of God as envisaged by Jesus realised among us, his zeal for the genuine development of all peoples, his razor sharp mind and his powerful sense of humour with its love of irony, laughter and the joy of people.
Years ago, Dick was characterised as being shaped like a paschal candle - tall, thin and luminous. But his moral stature far surpassed his physical tallness. The Bible tells us that there were giants in the early days. But Dick Cremins shows us that giants are still to be found in modern days.

◆ Interfuse
Interfuse No 147 : Spring 2012

Obituary

Fr Richard (Dick) Cremins (1922-2012) : Zambia Malawi Province

24 August 1922: Born in Dublin.
Early education: Blackrock College, UCD and 1 year at King's Inns (legal studies)
1943: Obtained a BA Degree in Legal and Political Science in 1943 from UCD
5 October 1943: Entered Emo
October 1945: First Vows: Emo
1946 - 1949: Tullabeg, studying Philosophy
1949 - 1951: Belvedere - Regency
1951 - 1952: Mungret College, Teaching, Prefecting
1952 - 1955: Milltown Park, studying Theology
28th July 1955: Ordained
1955 - 1956: Milltown Park, 4th Year Theology
1956 - 1957: Rathfarnham, Tertianship
1957 - 1958: Zambia, learning the language
1958: Chikuni, Manager of schools
1959 - 1963: Chikuni, Canisius College, Principal
2 February 1961: Final Vows at Chikuni
3 December 1969: Transcribed to Zambia Province
1964 - 1970: Monze, Parish Priest
1971 - 1975: Monze, Chaplain, lay apostolate
1976: Monze, Nairobi, Dublin, recovering health
1976 - 1983: Lusaka, Catholic Secretariat, Chaplain, Lay Apostolate, Secretary for Development
1983 - 1992; St. Ignatius, Director Family Life Movement St. Ignatius,
1983 - 1990: Superior
1990 - 1993: Luwisha House, Director Family Life Movement
1993 - 2007: Lilongwe (opened the house in 1993) FASU consultancy (later FAMLI)
1999 - 2004: Chaplain Lilongwe International Catholic community
2000 - 2001: Assistant Diocesan Pastoral Coordinator
2007 - 2012: Dublin, Cherryfield Lodge, recovering health. Praying for the Church and the Society
21 February 2012: Died Cherryfield

Obituary : Conall Ó Cuinn
Dick grew up in Dublin and was the last surviving sibling, having been predeceased by his brothers, Pat, Gary and Paul, and by his sister, Nora. Though his education at Blackrock College left a strong mark, unlike his brother he was clear that the Holy Ghost Fathers were not for him. General Richard Mulcahy, his mother's cousin, connected him with the turbulent socio-political situation of post-independence and post civil-war Ireland. So it was not surprising that he studied Law and Politics in UCD, including a year at King's Inns. He was a bright student, a formidable debater with a razor sharp sense of humour tinged with a certain killer instinct, not always appreciated by his adversaries, and which sometimes got him into trouble. Having graduated from UCD and passed his first Bar exam, both with 1st class honours, he joined the Society at the then late age of 21, a late vocation, a man of the world. And all of this during World War II.

Zambia--Monze (1957-1975)
Dick spent 50 years living and working in Zambia (Northern Rhodesia for his first 7 years there). He embraced the new State on independence and became a Zambian citizen, a symbolic statement representing a desire to insert himself into Zambian life and culture. This involved revoking his Irish citizenship so that he required a visa each time he needed to visit Ireland. He put down roots in the Chikuni Mission which was later to become Monze Diocese. He arrived there in 1957, just nine years after the first involvement of the Irish Jesuits. From there he later launched himself nationally, and even internationally.

Learning Tonga for a year was always the first task before being thrown into the apostolate. His first job was that of Manager of Schools at a time when the primary education project of the mission was in full swing. He then became Principal of Chikuni Secondary College in the lead up to Independence (1964). Effectively he was educating what would become the leaders of the new Zambian state. And clearly Dick was seen by his superiors as a man of ability and initiative.

In 1962, as the Second Vatican Council was getting underway, James Corboy, then Rector of Milltown Park and Theology Professor, was appointed Bishop of Monze. The Council changed James, as a person and an ecclesiastic. He embraced it as a process, and ever afterwards claimed that the Council was his introduction to theology, especially the seminars given on the fringe of the Council's formal sessions. On his appointment to Zambia he had a clear vision of the importance of the laity and the involvement of the Church in the development of peoples. With that vision he gathered people of the calibre of Dick Cremins around him to promote the project of Vatican II in the new Diocese of Monze. Dick would be a right-hand man when appointed Parish Priest of Monze in 1964 and also Chaplain to the Lay Apostolate movement.

At the same time and at the invitation of Bishop Corboy, the Holy Rosary Sisters were establishing their hospital next door. Dick became great friends with the sisters, a camaraderie and friendship similar to that of siblings in a family, brothers and sisters who supported each other in deep and practical love. This is an occasion to acknowledge and give public thanks for such support and love, and to thank God for it, not just to the Holy Rosary Şişters, but also to the Sisters of Charity, the RSHM sisters (Ferrybank), and the Holy Spirit Sisters (founded also by Bishop Corboy).

Amid the hardship, labour and struggle of those first years there was much fun and laughter. Dick's humour became legendary in the land. For example, rushing out the door at 9.50 a.m. one morning he declared: “I've got to rush. There is a meeting that was due to start at 8.00 am and I don't want to be late!”

And another, told by Sr. Theresa, a Holy Rosary sister. She arrives in the country, fresh with a sociology degree and some notion of community development. Her first task is to interview the PP to avail of his vast experience and local knowledge. Dick lets her ask her questions and avidly write her notes with that neophyte enthusiasm of the recently arrived. “Sister”, interrupts Dick as she begins to ask another question, “I'd like you to know that I've only arrived here myself 3 days ago. So I'm finding my feet too:. They became friends that moment, a friendship which included Theresa sitting by Dick's bed as he lay dying, 38 years later. Such was the quality of friendship on the Mission that we celebrate and acknowledge today.

Shortly after independence when three of the Sisters were PI'd (declared persona ingrata] by the new, youthful and over-confident government, for refusing the orders of local officials regarding medical matters, Dick went to bat for them with the government officials in Lusaka. The PI order was revoked after hours of palaver. Dick came within a hair's breadth of being PI'd himself, so that Zambia nearly lost this “troublesome priest”, a term used to describe him in a government memo on the events.

Zambia -- Lusaka (1976-1993):
Vatican II had taken place; the Decree on the Laity played a central role in Bishop Corboy's strategy. As a result a huge investment was made in the education and training of lay people. Dick, given his experience in Monze, moved to Lusaka in 1976 to take up an appointment at the Catholic Secretariat (set up by Fr. Colm O'Riordan SJ) as National Chaplain to the Lay Apostolate, and Secretary for Development

He was a trailblazing supporter of the National Council of Catholic Women of Zambia, at a time when women were invisible supernumeraries both in the church and in Zambian society. Dick encouraged them to take a lead and use their power. He campaigned hard for them to have an appropriate place both in the church and in African society, and he saw his job as an enabler, giving them the courage to make the moves themselves; so when they came up with an idea and asked him to act on it, he would say No, yours is the voice that should be heard.

Later in 1983, he became Director of the Family Life Movement which tried to implement the teachings of Vatican II on family life. Dick was very much taken with Humanae Vitae when it was published in 1968, and believed its practical teaching could be put into practice if the vision behind it were understood and assimilated. Of course, this was controversial, and in a sense grist to Dick's mill. With determination and humour he developed and led the organization, Famously, he introduced himself to a somewhat sceptical if not hostile international conference with a statement, that he had practiced natural family planning all his life!

So Dick had many friends, and some enemies. An example of such friendships is the message of Clare Mukolwe, now a graduate student at Fordham University in New York:
“A gentle spirit gone before us marked with a sign of faith. I was introduced to Fr Richard Cremins by my mother Grace Mukolwe. They worked together for the National Council of the Laity. Fr Cremins was also my mother's first spiritual director and he introduced Mum to the Ignatian Spirituality retreats. He gave me my first real job straight after high school. It was fun”.

Malawi --Lilongwe (1993-2007)
As a number of Malawian men had joined the Society, Malawi opened up as a mission possibility in the early 90's. Dick was sent to open a new house in Lilongwe and to develop his Family Life apostolate in that country. He worked there for 14 years, until his stroke in 2007. Like a tree being felled, he was suddenly reduced from full health to a state of great disability, both in his walking and in his speaking. He returned to Ireland via Zambia and moved into Cherryfield Lodge, his last home.

Ireland--Cherryfield (2007-2012)
Dick's approach was not one of self-pity. In his usual manner he confronted the problem head on. Getting himself as mobile as possible, and getting himself to speak with some sort of clarity was now his main goal. And with great determination, never accepting to lie down in the face of difficulty or refusal, he achieved much of what he set out to do. The sharp mind and quick wit never deserted him, even after the stroke in March 2007 which crippled and distressed him --- as with characteristic determination he set himself to recover clarity of speech.

An example of his logic and determination had to do with his wheeled walker: All wheeled walkers have two brakes, literally one on the left hand and one on the right hand. But what if your right hand doesn't work, as was the case for Dick and thousands of other stroke victims? Two-handed breaks do not work. They are positively dangerous. If you asked a car driver to break with two break pedals, he argued, there would be carnage on the roads. Why are stroke victims expected to do with two-handed breaks? Such a break doesn't exist, he was told. Should exist, he insisted, and if you won't locate one, I will do so myself. So using the Internet he located one in Sweden. Expensive, but existent. It was bought and functioned well. But he needed to redesign the right handle to suit his withered hand which design he then sent to Sweden where they made it for him and sent back to Ireland for fitting, Where Dick had a will, there was a way: Dick's way, “No” was not an option for Dick when he saw that something was possible.

And again the humour: Matron Rachel McNeil was the subject to which one of Dick's Ditties was addressed:

    Poem to Rachel
Dick has more problems with his vowels
than with his bowels
And therefore needs more alcohol
than Movicol®

Dick died six months short of his 90th birthday. Even to the end of his days in Cherryfield he was a formidable crusader for a number of causes, often a champion against the authorities, and always on the side of life – whether it was through natural family planning, or organising a draughts championship in Cherryfield for men who'd have thought their gaming days were over. He lived life to the full and to the last. In his last week in hospital he had an article accepted for publication in the Furrow, and one in the Irish Catholic. All he needed was a WiFi modem to send it to the editors. Both articles were controversial, questioning the standard version. Both rocked the boat.

Now the questioning and the rocking and the struggling are over. For those who did not know Dick, remember how a chieftain in Tanzania described him: :I know only one human being who is shaped like the paschal candle: Fr Dick Cremins, tall, thin and luminous”. His light faded for us on 21 February, but shines now in a broader heaven.

Curtis, Robert J, 1852-1893, Jesuit scholastic

  • IE IJA J/1152
  • Person
  • 07 April 1852-29 September 1893

Born: 07 April 1852, Dublin
Entered: 26 May 1875, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 29 September 1893, University College, Dublin, St Stephen's Green, Dublin

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
1877-1882 He was sent to Clongowes for regency teaching Mathematics.
1882 He began his Philosophy, but had to stop due to headaches.
1883 He was made a Fellow of the Royal University and taught at UCD, where he remained until his death 29 September 1893. During the latter years of his life he had been suffering fits, to the point where he was not allowed by his Superiors to be Ordained. He had gone to bed as usual 28/09, and he was found dead in his bed the following morning. The doctor said he appeared to have had a fit during the night and suffocated. He was a very brilliant Mathematician and had won numerous academic awards at University. He was said to be one of the most amiable and genial of men. he made a fast friend of everyone with whom he made contact, and was a particular favourite with the students. His simple life and great learning impressed them greatly.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - At TCD before entry

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934
Leeson St :
Monday, November 20th, was a red-letter day in the history of Leeson street, for it witnessed the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the House's foundation. In November, 1833. the Community came into being at 86 St Stephen's Green, where it remained until 1909, when the building was handed over to the newly constituted National University. The Community, however, survived intact and migrated to a nearby house in Lesson Street, where it renewed its youth in intimate relationship with the Dublin College of the University.
Its history falls this into two almost equal periods, different, indeed, in many ways, yet essentially one, since the energies of the Community during each period have been devoted to the same purpose, the furtherance of Catholic University Education in Ireland.
A precious link between the two eras is Father Tom Finlay, who was a member of the Community in 1883, and ever since has maintained his connection with it. His presence on Monday evening, restored to his old health after a severe illness was a source of particular pleasure to the whole gathering. It was also gratifying to see among the visitors Father Henry Browne, who had crossed from England at much personal inconvenience to take part in the celebration. Not only was Father Browne a valued member of the Community for over thirty years, but he acquired additional merit by putting on record, in collaboration with Father McKenna, in that bulky volume with the modest title " A Page of Irish History," the work achieved by the House during the first heroic age of its existence. It was a pleasure, too, to see hale and well among those present Father Joseph Darlington, guide, philosopher and friend to so many students during the two periods. Father George O'Neill, who for many years was a distinguished member of the Community, could not, alas. be expected to make the long journey from his newer field of fruitful labor in Werribee, Australia.
Father Superior, in an exceptionally happy speech, described the part played by the Community, especially in its earlier days of struggle, in the intellectual life of the country. The venerable Fathers who toiled so unselfishly in the old house in St. Stephens Green had exalted the prestige of the Society throughout Ireland. Father Finlay, in reply, recalled the names of the giants of those early days, Father Delany, Father Gerald Hopkins, Mr. Curtis and others. Father Darlington stressed the abiding influence of Newman, felt not merely in the schools of art and science, but in the famous Cecilia Street Medial School. Father Henry Browne spoke movingly of the faith, courage and vision displayed by the leaders of the Province in 1883, when they took on their shoulders such a heavy burden. It was a far cry from that day in 1883, when the Province had next to no resources, to our own day, when some sixty of our juniors are to be found, as a matter of course preparing for degrees in a National University. The progress of the Province during these fifty years excited feelings of
admiration and of profound gratitude , and much of that progress was perhaps due to the decision, valiantly taken in 1883 1883, which had raised the work of the Province to a higher plane.

Cusack, Patrick, 1918-2003, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/591
  • Person
  • 29 August 1918-06 March 2003

Born: 29 August 1918, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1936, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1949, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1981, Della Strada, Dooradoyle, Limerick
Died: 06 March 2003, Cherryfield Lodge Dublin

Part of the Belvedere College SJ, Dublin community at the time of death.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 123 : Special Issue February 2005

Obituary

Fr Patrick (Paddy) Cusack (1918-2003)

29th Aug. 1918: Born in Dublin
Early education in Dominican Convent, Eccles Street, and CBS, Richmond Street
7th Sept. 1936: Entered the Society at Emo
8th Sept. 1938: First Vows at Emo
1938 - 1941: Rathfarnham - Studied Arts at UCD
1941 - 1944: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1944 - 1946: Crescent College, Limerick - Regency
1946 - 1950: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
31st July 1949: Ordained at Milltown Park
1950 - 1951: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1951 - 1953: Mungret College - Teaching
1953 - 1954: Clongowes -Teaching
1954 - 1959: Mungret - Teaching, Spiritual Director (Boys)
1959 - 1968: Emo:
1959 - 1961: Master of Novices
1961 - 1968: Rector; Master of Novices
1968 - 1974: Mungret:
1968 - 1971: Spiritual Director (Boys); Teacher
1971 - 1974: Rector; Teacher
(Mungret closed Summer '74)
1974 - 1978: Sullivan House - Director Spiritual Exercises; Member of Spirituality Centre
1978 - 1983: Dooradoyle - Chaplain; Teacher; Spiritual Director (pupils)
1983 - 1984: Tullabeg - Co-ordinator of Apostolate.
1984 - 1989: Leeson Street - Spiritual Exercises & Retreats
1989 - 2003: Belvedere:
1989 - 1990: Spiritual Exercises
1990 - 1992: College Confessor
1992 - 1993: Asst.Pastoral Care Co-ordinator
1993 - 1994: Adult Education on Prayer
1994 - 2003: Director Spiritual Exercises; Adult Prayer Education; College Confessor
6th March 2003 Died at Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

After a long illness, borne peacefully and patiently, Paddy died at Cherryfield Lodge in the presence of family members and Father Eddie FitzGerald from the Milltown community.

Kevin Laheen writes:
Paddy Cusack had just left for Rathfarnham when I arrived in Emo in 1938. The novices who were still in Emo remembered him very well and gave us, newcomers, a fair picture of him. Some said he was fervent, others described him as edifying, while Sean O'Connor, (my 'Angelus' and now a missioner in Nairobi) said he was meticulous. When I got to know him in Rathfarnham he certainly lived up to the reputation he had earned for himself in Emo. But I learned a lot more about him as the months in the Castle passed. He was a placid man whom nothing could ruffle, but in our eyes there was a downside to him. He had no athletic ability and no taste for games. He never played tennis, nor handball, but because he felt it was the will of God he turned out to play that is the wrong word) football, for he was essentially a passenger on the field. He once brought a book to the pitch to have a little read just in case nobody passed the ball to him. They never did.

When I joined him in Tullabeg he had become a great reader. He never again ventured on to the football pitch but in his many long walks, aided by his musical ear, he had become an expert in identifying the birds by listening to their songs - in Tullabeg their name was legion. Apart from our days in Milltown Park prior to ordination, I never lived with him again until we both were stationed in Mungret. There he was a good teacher but his appointment to the post of Spiritual Father to the boys gave a pointer to what would occupy him for the rest of his life. Apart from his days as the last Rector of the college, all his work for the rest of his life was associated with spiritual formation. As Master of Novices I am sure that many of his novices would enrich this picture of him by adding their own memories.

He was a great friend of the nuns all over the country. There was many a convent that had an open door and a bed for the night whenever he found himself stranded between retreats. The number of Long Retreats he directed exceeded thirty, and he had a particular weakness for the convent that had a piano. Paddy was a lover of the piano but he hesitated to play before an audience. As he pursued his nomadic life he always tucked away in his case a few sheets of piano music, with a preference for Mendelssohn. Towards the end of his life when the burden of travel became too heavy he spent longs periods at Knock Shrine assisting many people with guided prayer. He became known as the “be still and know that I am God” priest for that was how he always began his prayer sessions. His name is still remembered there with affection and appreciation.

During my own sojourn in Cherryfield, Paddy paid a few short visits. He had become more quiet, took little part in recreation, spent more time in the chapel or pacing up and down the corridor. When able, his great achievement was to take a trip into the city and have a cup of coffee in Bewleys, and later he would talk of it as a real triumph. The end came rather suddenly and I am sure he had the support of the prayers of the thousands whom he had helped during his life as a priest. May he rest in peace.

Darlington, Joseph, 1850-1939, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/43
  • Person
  • 05 November 1850-18 July 1939

Born: 05 November 1850, Wigan, Lancashire, England
Entered: 10 July 1880, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1889
Final vows: 15 August 1897
Died: 18 July 1939, Linden Convalescent Home Blackrock, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson St, Dublin community at the time of death

by 1888 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1896 at Chieri Italy (TAUR) making Tertianship

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Darlington, Joseph
by Bridget Hourican

Darlington, Joseph (1850–1939), Jesuit and academic, was born 5 November 1850 in Wigan, Lancashire, second son of Ralph Darlington (occupation unknown). He matriculated at Brasenose College, Oxford (2 December 1869) and graduated BA (1874) and MA (1876), after which he took orders in the Church of England. At Oxford he had been profoundly influenced by the leaders of the anglo-catholic movement, and, because of his advocacy of certain catholic doctrines, had to resign his parish. After a summer spent wrestling his conscience in the Rhineland, he was received into the catholic church in 1878, and came to Ireland as tutor to a catholic family in Tralee, Co. Kerry, where he met and was influenced by the Jesuit Isaac Moore. In 1880 he entered the Irish Jesuit noviciate and in 1885 was on the staff of UCD, teaching Latin and Greek and acting as assistant prefect of studies. He spent the rest of his career in UCD.

Appointed dean of studies and university examiner in English literature in 1890, he was for the next nineteen years (until the absorption of the old college into the new UCD) ‘the linchpin of what was at times a somewhat ramshackle conveyance’ (Gwynn, 36). He was professor of English until 1901, when he transferred to the chair of metaphysics (1901–9). Idiosyncratic, energetic, and a talented organiser, he was famous for his involvement with every phase of college life, and his concern for students’ welfare. His mannerisms – staccato speech, brisk rubbing of hands – became legendary, as did his perpetual refrain ‘Capital! Capital! Just my idea!’, which signalled his propensity to agreement. His eccentricity, pliancy, and good nature are illustrated by two stories that found their way into a number of memoirs: when a student informed him he was to be married, Darlington allegedly replied: ‘Just the very thing, just the very thing, I was about to do the same myself’; and when John Marcus O'Sullivan (qv) applied for a chair in philosophy, Darlington asked if he had any other subject, and on hearing that he had studied history in first year, said ‘Capital! Capital! You apply for history.’ O'Sullivan did, gained the professorship, and proved a great success. Darlington's students set traps to get him to agree indiscriminately and so contradict himself – possibly he played along, as he had a droll sense of humour. Most appreciated his interest in their welfare and his ‘almost miraculous power of radiating his own cheerful optimism’ (Howley, 504), but this view was not shared by his most famous student, James Joyce (qv), who immortalised him as the dean of studies in Portrait of the artist as a young man (1916). Joyce's dean is indeed brisk, chatty, interested, and courteous, but he is also unsaintly, with pale, loveless eyes, a hard, jingling voice, and a face like an unlit lamp. In one of the book's most famous scenes, his querying of a peculiarly Irish word makes Stephen Dedalus reflect bitterly on Ireland's subordination to Britain. Other students, however, thought Darlington the best assimilated of the English Jesuits in UCD – ‘though he had English eyes, he wore Irish spectacles. He could see our point of view and agree with it’ (Howley, 501–2). Later in life he was a strong supporter of Sinn Féin.

Darlington published little – most notable was probably The dilemma of John Haughton Steele (1933), a biography of the convert son of the Rev. William Steele (qv). An exponent of the theory that Shakespeare was catholic, he wrote between 1897 and 1899 a number of articles on this subject in the Irish Ecclesiastical Review, the Irish Monthly, and the New Ireland Review. His contribution to the history of the college, A page of Irish history (1930) was droll and lively, exhibiting his excellent memory for detail and grasp of the absurd. It was with characteristic humour that he suggested the volume be called ‘Whigs on the Green’, after the political tendency of UCD president William Delany (qv), SJ. Outside the college he played an important role as director of the Archconfraternity of St Joseph in Ireland and as editor of its newsletter, St Joseph's Sheaf. This confraternity, founded in France, focused on educating young priests. A Galway woman, Olivia Mary Taafe (qv), set up the Irish branch and persuaded Darlington to become involved. Shortly after the first issue of St Joseph's Sheaf (1 April 1895), Darlington was transferred to England for his tertianship (the year's course required before the taking of the final Jesuit vows) and his colleague, Fr Henry Browne (qv) took over the editorship, but Darlington remained involved with the society until 1923 and contributed regularly to the newsletter.

On the establishment of the NUI (1909) Darlington stepped down as dean and professor but was put in charge of Winton House and later University Hall, students' halls of residence, where he continued to work until a few years before his death in Dublin on 18 July 1939, aged 88.

Arthur Clery, Dublin essays (1919), 54–6; Society of Jesus, A page of Irish history: the story of University College Dublin 1883–1909 (1930); IER, xlii (July 1933), 109–10; Ir. Independent, 19 July 1939; John Howley, ‘Fr Joseph Darlington, S.J., 1850–1939: an appreciation’, Studies, xxviii (1939), 501–4; Alumni Oxonienses; J. F. Byrne, The silent years (1953), 33–5; Aubrey Gwynn, ‘The Jesuit fathers and University College’, Michael Tierney (ed.), Struggle with fortune: a miscellany for the centenary of the Catholic University of Ireland, 1854–1954 (1954); Richard Ellmann, James Joyce (1982); Thomas J. Morrissey, Towards a national university: William Delany S.J. 1835–1924 (1983); J. Anthony Gaughan, Olivia Mary Taafe, 1832–1918 (1995)

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934

Leeson St :
Monday, November 20th, was a red-letter day in the history of Leeson street, for it witnessed the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the House's foundation. In November, 1833. the Community came into being at 86 St Stephen's Green, where it remained until 1909, when the building was handed over to the newly constituted National University. The Community, however, survived intact and migrated to a nearby house in Lesson Street, where it renewed its youth in intimate relationship with the Dublin College of the University.
Its history falls this into two almost equal periods, different, indeed, in many ways, yet essentially one, since the energies of the Community during each period have been devoted to the same purpose, the furtherance of Catholic University Education in Ireland.
A precious link between the two eras is Father Tom Finlay, who was a member of the Community in 1883, and ever since has maintained his connection with it. His presence on Monday evening, restored to his old health after a severe illness was a source of particular pleasure to the whole gathering. It was also gratifying to see among the visitors Father Henry Browne, who had crossed from England at much personal inconvenience to take part in the celebration. Not only was Father Browne a valued member of the Community for over thirty years, but he acquired additional merit by putting on record, in collaboration with Father McKenna, in that bulky volume with the modest title " A Page of Irish History," the work achieved by the House during the first heroic age of its existence. It was a pleasure, too, to see hale and well among those present Father Joseph Darlington, guide, philosopher and friend to so many students during the two periods. Father George O'Neill, who for many years was a distinguished member of the Community, could not, alas. be expected to make the long journey from his newer field of fruitful labor in Werribee, Australia.
Father Superior, in an exceptionally happy speech, described the part played by the Community, especially in its earlier days of struggle, in the intellectual life of the country. The venerable Fathers who toiled so unselfishly in the old house in St. Stephens Green had exalted the prestige of the Society throughout Ireland. Father Finlay, in reply, recalled the names of the giants of those early days, Father Delany, Father Gerald Hopkins, Mr. Curtis and others. Father Darlington stressed the abiding influence of Newman, felt not merely in the schools of art and science, but in the famous Cecilia Street Medial School. Father Henry Browne spoke movingly of the faith, courage and vision displayed by the leaders of the Province in 1883, when they took on their shoulders such a heavy burden. It was a far cry from that day in 1883, when the Province had next to no resources, to our own day, when some sixty of our juniors are to be found, as a matter of course preparing for degrees in a National University. The progress of the Province during these fifty years excited feelings of
admiration and of profound gratitude , and much of that progress was perhaps due to the decision, valiantly taken in 1883 1883, which had raised the work of the Province to a higher plane.

Irish Province News 14th Year No 4 1939

Obituary

Father Joseph Darlington

Father Joseph Darlington died at Linden Convalescent Home Blackrock, on the 18th July. His health and his memory had been failing for some years-he was almost 89 when he died - but his sunny and unselfish cheerfulness remained to the very end undimmed, and made everyone who had to do with him his friend.

He was born in Wigan in 1850, and educated at Rossall School, and at Brasenose College, Oxford. When at Oxford he came in touch with the leaders of the Anglo-Catholic movement, and was profoundly influenced by their ideas. He decided to take Orders in the Church of England, but before doing so he spent a year or more at the seminary which the Anglo-Catholics had established at Cuddesdon, in order that clerics might have some more instruction and training in their duties than were required for a University Degree. He always retained a strong and affectionate regard for his colleagues and teachers of this period. I remember someone saying in his presence that these “Ritualists were only interested
in externals. vestments and incense and candles and so on is not so," said he (it must have been almost the only instance in which he was ever known to contradict anyone) “I knew these men well, I was one of them, We wondered why it was that when we preached Catholic doctrines, the Sacrifice of the Mass, the Real Presence, the power of the Sacraments, and so on, nobody listened to us, while the Catholic churches. in which these same doctrines were preached, were crowded, We went to see, and we saw that everything in the Catholic Church, the vestments, the lights, the altar decorations, the pictures and statues, all spoke to the people of the supernatural and divine meaning of the doctrines. So we went and did the same.
His father, a well-to-do lawyer, secured for him a prosperous living, and his prospects in the Church of England were rosy. But his advocacy of Catholic doctrines brought him into conflict with his flock, who reported him to his Bishop. The young parson defended his beliefs, and the Bishop replied with much kindness : “I will not argue with you about the truth of your ideas. But I will put this to you - you are being paid a salary to teach the doctrines of the Church of England as set forth in the Thirty-nine Articles. And the doctrines you are teaching, whether true or not, do not seem to answer to that description.” Whereupon the young divine promptly resigned his benefice, and prepared to face the world penniless.
Not long after this he was received into the Church, and obtained a position as tutor in an Irish Catholic family. He had already, at the time of his reception, offered himself to the Society, but he was then too recent a convert to be received at once. It was largely the impression made upon him by Father Isaac Moore, S.J., that decided him to enter the Irish Province, which he did in 1880, two years after his reception into the Church.
Not very long before, while he was still in the Ministry of the Church of England, a colleague had said to him : “I can't go on as I am. I must be either a Jesuit or a Cowley Father.” Darlington had answered, horrified at the danger his friend was running : “Put the idea of being a Jesuit out of your head. That is a temptation straight from the devil! ” So the friend became a Cowley Father, and remained one to his death, having in the meantime written one of the best books in English on the Spiritual Exercises.
After his novitiate he did three years Philosophy at Milltown Park, and was assigned in 1885 to University College, which Father W. Delany was struggling valiantly and with success to put on its feet. He helped in the teaching and studied for a degree in Philosophy. He was already M.A. of Oxford, but he took his B.A. in the old Royal University in 1886 and his M.A. in 1887, the latter with First-Class Honours and a special Gold Medal. Then he went to Louvain for Theology, and after his ordination returned to University College. Here he remained, with the exception of his Tertianship at Chieri, until the Royal University ceased to exist, in 1909. He was, one may say, the mainspring of the College, and its wonderful success during those twenty years was more due to him, probably, than to any other one man. He was Professor of English first and of Philosophy afterwards, and Prefect of Studies the whole time. His energy was unremitting, and he had a wonderful power of taking a real personal interest in every person and thing he had to deal with. He was not a great organiser, but every teacher and every student knew that he had in Father Darlington a personal friend to whom he could turn in any difficulty or trouble, and who would spare no trouble to help him. His kindness was unbounded. Apart from his duties at the College, every student in Dublin who had got into trouble with his parents or with his scholastic superiors, or even with the police, turned to him as a matter of course, and never in vain. Not only was he helped, but he was made to feel that by appealing for help he had conferred a great favour on Father Darlington.
During these years, too, and indeed until in the last days his feebleness made it impossible, he helped numbers of non-Catholics to find their way into the Church. They came to him, sure of a sympathetic and understanding listener. His habit of agreeing with practically everything one said was a source of amusement to his friends, but it had a solid basis, and it served him well when dealing with the difficulties of others. His principle was that, just as there is an element of good in everyone, so there is an element of truth in almost every statement; and his plan was to seize on that and build upon it. A Protestant said to him once: “If I knew what is in the Blessed Sacrament, I think I could become a Catholic”. He replied: “You don't know, and neither do I. But Our Lord said, 'This is My Body,' and I believe Him. And if He says anything to me about it on the Last Day, I shall say, I didn't know what was there, but You told me it was Your Body, and I believed You.” That difficulty was settled. Another time an Anglican, engaged to a Catholic girl, explained that in his view the Church had three branches, the Romani, the Eastern, and the Anglican. "And now," said Father Darlington, “ suppose a bird is sitting on a branch of a tree, and he sees his mate sitting on another branch, what does he do? “Hop over beside his mate, of course”. This principle of fastening on what is good and true in any person or statement, and working on that, is of course entirely accord ing to the mind and practice of St. Ignatius. But what above all else gave Father Darlington the remarkable power he had over souls in trouble or difficulty was his absolute self-forgetfulness and self-devotion ; that he was, in fact, so completely a man of God.
When the National University was founded in 1909, he did not apply for a chair. So it fell out that of all the Professors of the old University College (not due for superannuation), he, who had done more than any of the rest to make the new College possible, was the only one not to figure in its Faculty-list. He devoted himself to the students at Winton House and afterwards at University Hall, with the same generous energy that he had shown at Stephen's Green for so many years.
He was Spiritual Father to the Community for something like thirty years. His exhortations were often a delight to listen to for their freshness of outlook and presentation. I remember the first one he gave, in Stephen's Green, He was the most genuinely humble of men, and really felt for the Community, condemned to listen to such a person as himself. He did not say this in so many words, but he told us that the Spiritual Father was appointed for the humiliation of the Community. “Among the Fathers of the Desert”, he read out of his manuscript, “it was the custom, for the humiliation of the Community, to appoint its most stupid member as Spiritual Father - and we have only to look around us to see that the same heroic practice still obtains in all its pristine vigor”.
His whole life was generously given to God and his neighbour and he has left a fragrant memory to his many friends. May he rest in peace (M Egan SJ)

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Joseph Darlington 1850-1939
According to Fr William Delaney, Fr Joseph Darlington was the mainspring of the old Royal University and its success during those years 1889-1909, and indeed this was due in no small way to him. His energy was unremitting and he had a special gift of a personal interest in every person and thing he had to deal with, from his duties at the College, every student in Dublin who had got into trouble with his parents or scholastic superiors, or even police turned to him in a matter of course, and never in vain.

On retiring from the Royal University he became Spiritual Father in Leeson Street, an office he held for thirty years, giving exhortations that were a delight to the community.

He was born a Protestant at Wigan England in 1850, and while in Oxford came under the influence of the Oxford Movement. He took Orders in the Anglican Church, but entered the Catholic Church in 1878, becoming a Jesuit two years later.

He died at the ripe age of 89 on July 18th 1939.

Delaney, Hubert, 1929-2001, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/557
  • Person
  • 24 October 1929-01 April 2001

Born: 24 October 1929, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1948, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1962, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1966, Belvedere College SJ, Dublin
Died: 01 April 2001, Mater Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

◆ Companions in Mission1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Hubert Delaney was born in Dublin on 24 October 1929. After secondary school at the Christian Brothers in Dublin, Hubert entered the Civil Service for 15 months. However a higher calling brought him to the novitiate at Emo Park in 1948. He did the normal course of studies, B.A., philosophy, regency and then theology at Milltown Park in Dublin and crowned them with his ordination to the priesthood on 1962.

After tertianship, his life was lived in educational work. Up to 1974, secondary education occupied him, first at Belvedere College as prefect of studies of the Junior School followed by a year at Clongowes Wood College as teacher and higher line prefect. This was again followed by a three year stint as Headmaster at Gonzaga College in Dublin.
He moved from this into tertiary education and it was philosophy which absorbed his interests for the rest of his life. He lectured at the Milltown Institute in philosophy for eight years up to 1982. He continued lecturing but also studied for his M.A. in philosophy at Trinity College Dublin. He later obtained a Doctorate at Cork University and then went on a sabbatical 1989/1990. He went back to the Milltown Institute as lecturer and was also Director of the Lonergan Centre. He took a year off lecturing and went to Leeson Street as writer and researcher. For two years, 1993 to 1995, he was a tutor in philosophy at the Milltown Institute.

A complete change of venue brought him to Zambia, Africa, to the University of Zambia in Lusaka, invited by Fr Dillon-Malone, head of philosophy there. He stayed for a year lecturing and returned to Ireland to write but he first moved to Korea to lecture for a semester at Sogang University in Seoul. He was back in Leeson Street in 1997 as writer and doing research work again.

His health had not been good. He developed a serious heart condition and other ailments which hospitalised him several times. A stroke in March 2001 sent him to the Mater Hospital. Cerebral apathy and liver disease were diagnosed. All these led to his death on 1 April 2001.

Spontaneous testimony came from two of his former students who later became members of the staff of the Milltown Institute. Both spoke of him as a wonderful teacher, interesting, stimulating, challenging, but, most significant of all, he invited one to enter into a personal engagement and psychological growth. In his teaching he was not only the educator but also the pastor and the priest.

Friendship and service were two of Hubert's qualities. There were many on-going friendships with his former pupils and their families, as well as in the Jesuit communities in which he lived and in the family of his brother Peter. The Morning Star Hostel for ‘down and outs’, the Patricians, the Cenacle Retreat House were some of the areas where Hubert was of service. He had a love of literature, of classical music and of football. He missed all these when he came to Zambia for a year. After all, he was 66 years of age when he came and it is so difficult to make new friends and to fit into a new culture at that age .However he was of service at UNZA when he did come. Hubert's life was one of developing the talents that God had given him, a life centred on his priesthood and on the Mass.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 108 : Special Edition 2001

Obituary

Fr Hubert Delaney (1929-2001)

24th Oct. 1929: Born in Dublin
Early education in St.Patrick's, Drumcondra and CBS, Richmond Street, Dublin.
1947 - 1948: 15 Months in Civil Service
8th Sept 1948: Entered the Society at Emo
8th Sept 1950: First vows at Emo
1950 - 1953: Rathfarnham, studying Arts at UCD
1953 - 1956: Tullabeg - studying Philosophy
1956 - 1959: Belvedere - Teacher, H.Dip in Ed. at UCD
1959 - 1963: Milltown Park - studying Theology
31 July 1962: Ordained at Milltown Park
1964 - 1964: Tertianship at Rathfarnham Castle
1964 - 1965: Crescent College, Limerick - Teacher
1965 -1970: Belvedere College: Prefect of Studies of Junior school
2nd Feb 1966: Final Vows
1970 - 1971: Clongowes: Higher Line Prefect and teacher
1971 - 1974: Gonzaga College: Headmaster
1974 - 1982: Milltown Park - Lecturer in Philosophy at Milltown Institute
1982 - 1985: Lecturing in Philosophy at Milltown Inst. studying for MA in Phil. Ed. at TCD
1985 - 1989: Doctorate studies in Philosophy at UCC
1989 - 1990: Sabbatical
1990 - 1992: Lecturer in Philosophy at Milltown Institute; Director, Lonergan Centre
1992 - 1993: Leeson St; Writer and Research
1993 - 1995: Tutor in Philosophy at Milltown Institute
1995 - 1996: Lecturer in Philosophy at UNZA, Lusaka Writer;
1996 - 1997: Lecturer in Philosophy at Sogang University, Seoul, Korea (Spring semester)
1997 - 2001: Leeson St; Writer & Research; Chair Virgin Mary School Board, Ballymun
1st April 2001: Died in the Mater Hospital, Dublin

In 1997 Hubert developed a serious heart condition, cardio myopathy, for which he was receiving regular medical treatment. Within the past three years he was hospitalised several times - to have an artificial knee joint fitted, a hip joint replaced and multiple skin grafts on his legs.

The state of his health had been declining noticeably since last September and even more so since February of this year. On March 21s he suffered a stroke and was admitted to the Mater Hospital, where cerebral apathy and liver disease were diagnosed. The combination of his many ailments led rapidly to renal failure, which was the immediate cause of his death.

Des. O Grady preached at Hubert's Funeral Mass...

Hubert has us all where he wants us now - gathered together with him as his sisters and brothers in our Father's house. We are brought together here by our love of Hubert and by the faith we share with him, our faith in the power and love of God who is the Father of us all: “the Father from whom every family, whether spiritual or natural, takes its name”.

We are brought together today by our sorrow and our need, by our desire for the support we find in the company of one another and by our need to pray for Hubert, to give thanks for the gift he has been to us, and to surrender him back to the Father. In doing so we echo the faith of Job, which is also the faith of Hubert: “I know that my redeemer lives... These eyes of mine will gaze on him and find him not aloof”.

Jesus lives now for Hubert as the one who has gone before him to prepare a place for him. We pray that Hubert will now hear the words: “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of the Lord”.

We need not be in any doubt about Hubert's being welcomed into our Father's house. If we who are so poor in love always had a welcome for Hubert in our homes, how much more will our heavenly Father welcome him into his true home now. Unprofitable servants we may be, but beloved children first and last.

Our confidence for Hubert today is our confidence in the Father's love for him. That love has showered gifts on Hubert in this life, gifts that Hubert has turned to good account for us as our presence here today testifies more eloquently than anything I can say

If one looks through the official record of Hubert's assignments as a Jesuit priest Hubert's commitment to education is what stands out most of all. Hubert has worked at all levels of education - primary, secondary and tertiary, as well as in adult education. He taught in Belvedere, Clongowes, the Crescent, and in Gonzaga. He served as prefect of studies in the junior school in Belvedere and as headmaster in the senior school in Gonzaga.

In 1974 Hubert came to Milltown and began his career in third level education and I had spontaneous testimony to the value of his work there from two of his former students who are now members of the staff of the Milltown Institute. Both spoke of him as a wonderful teacher: interesting, stimulating, challenging, but most significant of all, as inviting one to personal engagement and growth. In his teaching he was not only the educator, but the pastor and the priest.

Hubert was able to teach so well because he himself was a lifelong student. And if we look at the topics of his MA thesis, “Imagination in Aristotle”, and his Ph.D. dissertation, “The Self-correcting Process of Learning”, we will realize that Hubert's study, though enjoyed for itself, was always focussed on the service of others. Hubert, like his Lord and Master, was among us as one who serves, and we have all benefited from the graces that God has given to Hubert.

That, as I said, is the official record. But off the record there is a whole parallel world of friendship and service; the Teams of Our Lady, the Morning Star, the Patricians, the Cenacle Retreat House, to name but some of the ones I know of Added to that there is his on-going friendship with many of his former pupils and their families, and, last but not least, his presence in his Jesuit communities and in the family of his brother Peter.

As we pray for Hubert today we can draw confidence from our faith in God and from the evidence of God's love in the gifts and graces he has showered upon Hubert, gifts Hubert turned to good account in his priestly life. Hubert's priesthood was at the centre of his life. He shared the word of God with us all and he gave of himself unsparingly. And at the heart of his every day and every work was the Mass.

There is so much more that could be said - his love of nature, and the joy and inspiration he drew from it - his doctoral dissertation about human development was entitled “The Tree of Life”. Then there was his love of literature. During the last few months he was reading again the novels of Jane Austen. Then there was music - mainly classical, and, of course, football.

Right up to the end Hubert enjoyed all of these. The day before he went to hospital for the last time, just two weeks ago today, he was, much against my wishes, let it be said, in Ballymun to chair a Board meeting of the Virgin Mary School, and then after than he spent the evening with his friends, Michael and Aileen Hardigan. The following day Hubert was too weak to get himself out of bed in the morning, and had to be taken to the Mater Hospital where, in spite of the best efforts of the doctors and nurses he died on Sunday morning of renal failure.

He died, yet he lives. He lives on in our hearts and our thoughts but also, we confidently trust, in our Father's home where he continues to work for us and bless us.

Delany, William, 1835-1924, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/456
  • Person
  • 04 June 1835-17 February 1924

Born: 04 June 1835, Leighlinbridge, County Carlow
Entered: 20 January 1856, Amiens France (FRA)
Ordained: 1866
Final vows: 02 February 1869
Died: 17 February 1924, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson St, Dublin

by 1866 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying Theology
by 1866 at Rome, Italy (ROM) Making Tertianship
Father Provincial of the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus : 05 August 1909-22 October 1912

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He had studied Philosophy and one year of Theology at Maynooth before Entry.

1858-1866 He did Regency at Clongowes as a Teacher and later at Tullabeg, and then went to for Theology at Rome.
1870-1880 Rector of Tullabeg. Here he completely changed the method of studies. Introduced exams at London University and was mainly responsible for the Intermediate Bill.
He then went on a trip to America with Fr John Moore SJ of ANG.
1873 The Jesuits were asked to take charge of St Patrick’s House which began under Thomas Keating, James Tuite and Robert Carbery. When this house closed, a new one was opened on Temple St with William as Vice-Superior.
1881-1888 He was appointed Vice-Rector of UCD.
1892 He accompanied the Provincial Timothy Kenny to the General Congregation at Loyola which elected Luis Martin as General.
1897-1909 He was appointed Rector of UCD
1909-1912 He was appointed Provincial. When he finished he went to Leeson St as Spiritual Father and died there 17 February 1924.

“He was one of the most remarkable and distinguished Jesuits of the 19th and 20th centuries. Balfour said he was the most cultivated Priest of his time. He was called ‘Doctor’ having been awarded his LLD.

Paraphrase of Excerpts from an Appreciation published on his death :
“The death of ..... deserves more than the usual notice.... No man ever served the people better. Nation-builder........Pioneer in educational reform.........along with Archbishop of Dublin can be regarded as founders of Irish National University Education. Even before the Universities Act, the Intermediate Bill, he developed as a young Priest, standards at Tullabeg which ave become an idea for Catholic public schools.
He worked with the O’Conor Don to encourage the Government to endow Secondary Education in Ireland, and this before it was done in England. Then came the Royal Universities Act. Concentrating on Newman’s old buildings in St Stephen’s Green.......they gathered honours and prizes......His success was the final argument needed to win equality of educational endowment and opportunity.
Aside from the political success, those who came to know him as a Priest as well, were touched by his spirituality. His key gift was that of choosing the best men to teach and giving them encouragement and freedom. His short sermons (20 ins) were models. His religious zeal was the source of his public service. It was not a narrow zeal, and he worked with all sorts and conditions for the Glory of God and Ireland”

Paraphrase of excerpts from the Irish Independent article 19 February 1924 “A Pioneer In Irish Education” :
“As the ruler of a great College, whether Tullabeg or UCD, he was chiefly remarkable, I think, for his quickly sympathetic spirit and readiness to accept new ideas. He was neither conservative nor cautious - the refuge of the weak - nor the tenacity of ideas once formed - the defect of the strong. This was equally true of the young man who made Tullabeg the leading College in Ireland and the old man who led his team to victory at UCD over three state supported rivals. He transformed Tullabeg through introducing London University Exams. His encouragement of the Societies at UCD was not only financial but borne of liberal tolerance, best exemplified in his attitude towards Irish Studies. He gathered round him very talented Jesuits and laymen. He also gave money liberally to ‘Irish” things such as “Irish Texts Society”, the Oireachtas and the Dublin Feis.
He managed to publish in his limited free time, his best being a series of Lenten Conferences “Christian Reunion” and “A Plea for Fair Play”. He could be impetuous, but had a quick mind to save himself from many blunders! He was both decisive and inspirational, and could also be very reflective, and he possessed a very generous heart.
Enough to say that the energy which inspired his untiring labours, the patience with which he gently endured trials and misrepresentations, the charity which sought to give help to all the needy, were alike drawn no more from excellence of nature, though that indeed was his, but from an intense spirit of prayer, an abiding realisation of the invisible world, a devout piety which he seemed to retain through life, the simple fervour of a ‘First Communicant’.”

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Delany, William
by Thomas J. Morrissey

Delany, William (1835–1924), Jesuit and president of UCD, was born 4 June 1835 at Leighlinbridge, Co. Carlow, second of ten children (of whom five survived) born to John Delany and Mary Delany (née Brennan). As with many Irish catholic families of farming stock, there was an eviction in the background: John Delany had been evicted from the family farm just ten years before William's birth. He moved to Leighlinbridge and set up a small bakery business, which, with the assistance of his strong-willed, resourceful wife, began to prosper. William attended school (1845–51) at Bagenalstown; at home, during the bleak famine years, he assisted in handing out bread and soup to a starving people. At the age of sixteen he requested that he be sent to Carlow College to study for the priesthood. After two years he moved to St Patrick's College, Maynooth. His parents were pleased to learn of his academic success and good general conduct, but considered him extravagant and over-particular in his requests for new clothes. God's ministers should dress carefully and well, he claimed. The lavish use of materials in pursuance of lofty ends was to prove a characteristic feature, which added both to his influence and his troubles.

In January 1856 he joined the Society of Jesus. His noviceship commenced at Saint-Acheul in France and concluded at Beaumont Lodge, near Windsor, in England. Two years followed at Clongowes Wood College, Co. Kildare, teaching junior classes, and then (August 1860) he was transferred to St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, near Tullamore, King's Co. (Offaly), where (apart from three years at Rome) he was to be stationed for the next twenty years. In this unlikely location he achieved the reputation as an educationist that paved the way to his appointment to the presidency of UCD. After his ordination at Rome (1866) he served for a while as a chaplain of the Irish brigade formed to defend the papal states against the forces of Garibaldi. Soon after his return home (1868) he was reappointed to Tullabeg, this time as prefect of studies and rector. He embarked on an elaborate programme of building, updating facilities, raising academic and cultural standards, tightening discipline, and expanding games activities. His criteria were the more celebrated English public schools, but he placed more emphasis on academic excellence. Some of his fellow Jesuits, highly critical of the expenditure, complained to the general of the order. For a while Delany's hopes and prospects were dimmed, but all was changed when he entered the senior class for the London University examinations and 100 per cent success was achieved. The results received wide acclaim. A feeling of inferiority about academic standards in catholic schools was widespread; Tullabeg's success was seen as justifying claims for equal educational opportunity with the endowed protestant schools. Delany became noted as an educationist, and he was closely consulted by Randolph Churchill, then secretary to the lord lieutenant, his father the duke of Marlborough (qv). Delany's influence was said to be considerable in shaping the two government bills that, as the intermediate act of 1878 and the Royal University act of 1879, changed the face of Irish education; and he was instrumental, together with William Walsh (qv) (1841–1921) of Maynooth, in establishing the Catholic Headmasters’ Association in October 1878.

The success of his college in the London University examinations (and subsequently in the intermediate and RUI examinations) made him an obvious person to be president of the catholic hierarchy's University College, St Stephen's Green, Dublin, the unsuccessful heir to John Henry Newman's (qv) Catholic University. The Jesuits took over the college as it stood in 1883, which meant that the fellows of the RUI were to be among its lecturers and also examiners of the university. This form of monopoly later led to hostility from some other competing colleges and from Walsh, subsequently archbishop of Dublin; but Delany and the senate of the Royal University of Ireland held to the original agreement, arguing that the only hope of obtaining a university for the majority population was by strengthening one college so that it might do outstandingly well and the catholic case for a university prove unanswerable. Delany, moreover, sought to have as many Jesuits as possible as fellows, provided they were fully qualified and the best suited for the advertised posts. By this means the fellows’ salaries would be ploughed back into the college, which was seriously under-funded. The college, under his presidency, proved so successful that it eventually achieved more honours in examinations than the three queen's colleges (Cork, Galway, Belfast) combined, although these were subsidised by the government. The talented staff of the college included Gerard Manley Hopkins (qv), Edmund Hogan (qv), Eoin MacNeill (qv), Tom Finlay (qv), and Thomas Arnold (qv); while among the brilliant student body were James Joyce (qv), Tom Kettle (qv), W. P. Coyne (qv), Arthur Clery (qv), Éamon de Valera (qv), Patrick McGilligan (qv), and John A. Costello (qv). Not surprisingly, Coyne was to remark in 1900: ‘The real work for Ireland is being done over there [University College]’ (Jesuit Fathers, A page of Irish history (1930), 244).

The achievements of UCD and Delany's close links with members of the Irish catholic hierarchy, with key politicians, and with successive chief secretaries and lord lieutenants, all played a part in the eventual solution to the Irish university question in the national university act of 1908. Delany's role was widely praised, yet within a short time he was to be lampooned as anti-Irish and his great services almost forgotten, because he let it be known that he did not approve of making the Irish language an obligatory subject for matriculation in the new university. He had done a great deal to promote Irish historical studies and Irish language and culture, but he did not wish to close off the university to many by having Irish as an entry requirement.

At the age of 74 Delany was appointed Jesuit provincial. He held the office for just three years, yet his was not a mere holding operation. He opened a new residence in Leeson St. for Jesuits lecturing in the university, and a hostel for students in nearby Hatch St.; and he served on the senate of the new university and on the governing body of UCD. Ahead of his time, he advocated the scientific study of agriculture at university level, pressed for education in the areas of industry and commerce, and proposed that UCD move from Earlsfort Terrace to more spacious grounds outside the city, a proposal publicly acknowledged by a later president, Michael Tierney (qv), on the occasion of the college eventually moving to an extensive campus at Belfield. Delany lived for another twelve years. In those years of dramatic change in Ireland, he became an almost forgotten figure: in the words of Cyril Power, SJ, who knew him, ‘a great man who had outlived his reputation’. He died 17 February 1924 at the age of 89.

Thomas Finlay, ‘William Delany, S.J.’, Clongownian (1924); Fathers of the Society of Jesus, A page of Irish history: story of University College, Dublin, 1883–1909 (1930); Thomas J. Morrissey, Towards a national university: William Delany, S.J. (1835–1924) (1983)

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934

Leeson St :
Monday, November 20th, was a red-letter day in the history of Leeson street, for it witnessed the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the House's foundation. In November, 1833. the Community came into being at 86 St Stephen's Green, where it remained until 1909, when the building was handed over to the newly constituted National University. The Community, however, survived intact and migrated to a nearby house in Lesson Street, where it renewed its youth in intimate relationship with the Dublin College of the University.
Its history falls this into two almost equal periods, different, indeed, in many ways, yet essentially one, since the energies of the Community during each period have been devoted to the same purpose, the furtherance of Catholic University Education in Ireland.
A precious link between the two eras is Father Tom Finlay, who was a member of the Community in 1883, and ever since has maintained his connection with it. His presence on Monday evening, restored to his old health after a severe illness was a source of particular pleasure to the whole gathering. It was also gratifying to see among the visitors Father Henry Browne, who had crossed from England at much personal inconvenience to take part in the celebration. Not only was Father Browne a valued member of the Community for over thirty years, but he acquired additional merit by putting on record, in collaboration with Father McKenna, in that bulky volume with the modest title " A Page of Irish History," the work achieved by the House during the first heroic age of its existence. It was a pleasure, too, to see hale and well among those present Father Joseph Darlington, guide, philosopher and friend to so many students during the two periods. Father George O'Neill, who for many years was a distinguished member of the Community, could not, alas be expected to make the long journey from his newer field of fruitful labor in Werribee, Australia.
Father Superior, in an exceptionally happy speech, described the part played by the Community, especially in its earlier days of struggle, in the intellectual life of the country. The venerable Fathers who toiled so unselflessly in the old house in St. Stephens Green had exalted the prestige of the Society throughout Ireland. Father Finlay, in reply, recalled the names of the giants of those early days, Father Delany, Father Gerald Hopkins, Mr. Curtis and others. Father Darlington stressed the abiding influence of Newman, felt not merely in the schools of art and science, but in the famous Cecilia Street Medial School. Father Henry Browne spoke movingly of the faith, courage and vision displayed by the leaders of the Province in 1883, when they took on their shoulders such a heavy burden. It was a far cry from that day in 1883, when the Province had next to no resources, to our own day, when some sixty of our juniors are to be found, as a matter of course preparing for degrees in a National University. The progress of the Province during these fifty years excited feelings of
admiration and of profound gratitude , and much of that progress was perhaps due to the decision, valiantly taken in 1883 1883, which had raised the work of the Province to a higher plane.

◆ Fr Joseph McDonnell SJ Past and Present Notes :

Later the performance of the Jesuits in managing UCD with little or no money, and then outperforming what were known as the “Queen’s Colleges” forced the issue of injustice against Catholics in Ireland in the matter of University education. It is William Delaney who headed up the effort and create the National University of Ireland under endowment from the Government.from the Government.

Dempsey, J Richard, 1918-2000, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1178
  • Person
  • 13 November 1918-14 May 2000

Born: 13 November 1918, Cleveland OH, USA
Entered: 01 September 1938, Milford OH, USA - Chicagensis Province (CHG)
Ordained: 13 June 1951
Professed: 02 February 1956
Died: 14 May 2000, Clarkston MI, USA - Detroitensis Province (DET)

by 1971 came to Leeson St (HIB) working

Duffy, Hugh P, 1936-2017, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/827
  • Person
  • 14 September 1936-28 April 2017

Born: 14 September 1936, Phibsboro, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1954, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 10 July 1968, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 01 February 1974, Della Strada Community, Dooradoyle, Limerick
Died: 28 April 2017, St James’ Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

by 1970 at Auriesville NY, USA (NEB) making Tertianship
by 1971 at New York NY, USA (NEB) studying
by 1980 at Bronx NY, USA (NYK) studying
by 2004 at Bronx NY, USA (NYK) working
by 2011 at Seattle University ORE, USA (ORE) teaching

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/hugh-duffy-gentle-jesuit/

Hugh Duffy – ‘a gentle Jesuit’
Fr Hugh Duffy SJ died in St James’s Hospital on Friday 28 April 2017, aged 80 years old. Born and raised in Dublin, Hugh won a senior cup rugby medal with Belvedere College SJ and entered the Jesuits in 1954. He spent several years in Limerick as a teacher and lecturer. He did his Doctoral degree in English in the United States and he worked in parish ministry and as a visiting professor there. Brian Grogan SJ gave the homily at his funeral mass in Milltown Park Chapel on 3 May.

Fr Grogan said about his friend and classmate, “This man was more there than the average man. He was able to reveal gold to other people”. He fondly remembered when Hugh went on to do his doctoral training after four bachelor degrees during a time when the Church was struggling to adapt to the times. His PhD thesis explored a fresh following of faith in a God who infinitely loves.

Regarding his life as a teacher, “Hugh struggled to liberate his students from destructive images of God. He had a passion for the genuine liberation of the human heart. He wanted people to know that they are loved and appreciated beyond words”. And he taught thousands of pupils in thousands of classes over his lifetime. A friend once noted: “He was a pet; he had soft eyes”. Fr Grogan also thanked his family for sharing Hugh with his Jesuit companions.

Referring to the Jesuit’s decline in health where he moved from autonomy to dependency, Fr Grogan remarked that “He did not yield to dark moods. He was humble and patient, and he offered his suffering for the Church and the world”. The Gospel for the funeral mass depicted Jesus asking his disciple Peter if he loved him, then commanding him to look after his flock. Fr Grogan imagined Hugh answering wholeheartedly, “Yes, I love you, Lord”.

“And so, Hugh found that dying is safe because God is safe, and all restricting images melt away. In his transfigured body, he’s able to dance and sing, and sing and dance, without a stick. And I think that laughter and merriment will be a large part of his contribution to the cosmic party.”

Damien Burke, assistant archivist in the Province, was also at the funeral mass. Hugh helped Damien in his work, identifying Jesuits from earlier days whom Damien would not have known. The very night before his stroke, Hugh was working with Damien on a pamphlet from Belvedere College SJ. “We were discussing a flyer for a 1953 production of the Mikado in which Hugh had a part – he was in the chorus. He was his usual lovely self, a kind and gentle Jesuit, and I really enjoyed working with him.”

A large number of Hugh’s family were in attendance including nieces and nephews who returned from many different countries. His nephew Ian spoke movingly about him. He said he would have made a great father so it was all the more inspirational that he had dedicated his life to the Church. And he raised a laugh when he talked about Hugh’s love of America and how he drove right across the continent from one coast to another – adding, “probably very slowly, but he did it!”

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

Scoil Colmcille, Dublin; Belvedere College SJ

1956-1959 Rathfarnham - Studying Arts at UCD
1959-1962 Tullabeg - Studying Philosophy
1962-1965 Clongowes Wood College SJ - Regency : Teacher; Studying for CWC Cert in Education
1965-1969 Milltown Park - Studying Theology
1969-1970 Monroe, Auriesville, NY, USA - Tertianship at Our Lady of the Martyrs
1970-1971 Rice High School, NY, USA - Studying for MA and MEd at Columbia University
1971-1979 Crescent College Comprehensive SJ, Dooradoyle - Teacher; Transition Year Co-ordinator
1979-1980 All Hallows High School, Bronx, NY, USA - Doctoral studies in English at Columbia University
1981-1982 Fordham University, NY, USA - Doctoral studies in English
1983 Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish, San Francisco, CA, USA - Parish Work
1983-1985 Gonzaga College SJ - Teacher; 6th Form Master
1985-2002 Crescent College Comprehensive SJ, Dooradoyle - Head of & Lecturer in English Department, Mary Immaculate College
1994 Chair English Department & Lecturer in English at Mary Immaculate College (UL)
2002 Sabbatical
2003-2004 St Thomas the Apostle, Hepstead, New York, NY, USA - Parish Work
2004-2012 Seattle University, Seattle, WA, USA - Visiting Professor in English and Theology
2012-2017 Leeson St - Assistant Chaplain in Cherryfield Lodge

Dunne, James, 1921-2014, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/845
  • Person
  • 22 May 1921-07 November 2014

Born: 22 May 1921, Kilbeggan, County Westmeath
Entered: 07 November 1949, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Final vows: 02 February 1960, Canisius College, Chikuni, Zambia
Died: 07 November 2014, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the Milltown Park, Dublin community at the time of death

Transcribed : HIB to ZAM 03/12/1969; ZAM to HIB 1979

by 1952 at Chikuni, Chisekesi, N Rhodesia (POL Mi) working - fourth wave of Zambian Missioners

◆ Companions in Mission1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Note from Bernard (Barney) Collins Entry
In 1951 he accompanied the first two scholastics, Bob Kelly and Joe Conway, and Br. Jim Dunne, on their way to the then Northern Rhodesia.

Note from Joe McCarthy Entry
In the late 50s, Joe pioneered the Chivuna Mission where he built the community house, church and Trade School with the co-operation of Br Jim Dunne and won the esteem and affection of the people in the locality

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 158 : Winter 2014

Obituary

Br James (Jim) Dunne (1921-2014)

22 May 1921: Born in Kilbeggan, Co. Westmeath.
Early education at Rahugh National School and CBS Tullamore.
Worked in the family business
7 November 1949: Entered the Society at Emo
8 November 1951: First Vows in Zambia
1951 - 1959: Chivunia Mission, Zambia – Teacher in technical and building skills
1959 - 1960: Manresa, Roehampton - Tertianship
1960 - 1974: Bishop's House, Monze - Builder
2 February 1960: Final Vows at Chikuni
1974 - 1981: Belvedere College - Minister
1981 - 1983: CIR - Secretary to the College
1983 - 1985: St. Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street - Minister; Supervisor of staff
1985 - 1987: Tullabeg - Minister
1987 - 1988: Tullabeg - Sabbatical; studying Theology at Milltown Institute
1988 - 1995: Milltown Park - Treasurer
1995 - 1999: St. Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street - Assisted in the church
1999 - 2007: Milltown Park - Assisted in the Community
2007 - 2014: Cherryfield Lodge – Prayed for the Church and the Society

Brother Jim Dunne was admitted to Cherryfield Lodge on 13th July 2007. He was a happy resident and enjoyed fairly good health over the years. His condition deteriorated over time and he died peacefully in Cherryfield Lodge. May he rest in the Peace of Christ.

On Friday, 7th November 2014, Brother Jim Dunne, a member of the Milltown Park community, died at Cherryfield Lodge, at the age of 93 years and several months - a monumental age for a man of many monuments. Always a man of few words, Jim became more quiet-spoken as the years advanced. But underneath this quiet exterior lay a deeply spiritual man whose longings and desires were always for the Lord and how he could use his talents to make the love and service of Christ our Lord a reality in his own life, as well as in the lives of his fellow-Jesuits and the many individuals whom he encountered during his many years with us.

From the very beginning of his religious life, Jim was a rock-solid man of God. Very early witness to this was the trust that the Irish Provincial, Fr. Tommy Byrne, placed in him by sending him in his second year as a novice to Northern Rhodesia, to what was then a newly developing world for Irish Jesuits. Jim was just over 30 at the time, mature in years but still grappling with the beginnings of the religious life. However, there was no need for any fear about the depth of his commitment. His solid spirituality stood by him through the long sea and rail journey from London (via Cape Town) to Chisekesi and on to Chikuni, where he arrived early in September 1951, and during the months of learning Chitonga in the somewhat spartan conditions that then prevailed. And it never deserted him after he took vows in Chikuni on the feast of St. Stanislaus Kostka later that year. This gave Jim the remarkable distinction of being the only Irish Jesuit ever to take his First Vows in what today is Zambia. He reaffirmed his Jesuit commitment on 2nd February 1960 when he took his Final Vows, again at Chikuni.

Endowed with great practical intelligence, Jim brought into the Society a wide range of skills developed and exercised in the family's workshop not far from Tullamore. Construction, artistic brick-laying, carpentry, joinery, plumbing, electrical work – he took all of these in his stride, almost as if they were second nature to him, and yet he was always prepared to learn more from those who were more qualified than he was. Jim was also a gifted manager, with a flair for organising and getting the right people, with the right tools and equipment, into the right place at the right time. His ability to give directions simply and effectively, and his own manifest skills, helped greatly in building up confident teams of proficient and well-motivated building workers. Working with and through these, Jim became key to building-development in what was to become the Diocese of Monze. But in addition to the buildings that bear his stamp even today, Jim also left a great monument in the skills that he passed on to the local people with whom he worked. He was very particular that anything he turned his hand to should be of the highest quality and he always tried to make sure that his trainees and workers would also be concerned not just with getting a job done but with getting it done to the highest possible standards.

One of Jim's earliest assignments was to develop and run with Father Joe McCarthy the Civuna Trades Training Institute (TTI). In time, the TTI gave way to a secondary school for girls, but not before, under Jim, it had qualified several hundred first-rate carpenters and brick-layers who fanned out to bring building development across much of the southern part of Zambia. Later, when the Diocese of Monze was established, Jim became in effect its building manager, working closely with Fr. Fred Moriarty and others in the development of Kizito Catechetical Centre, churches, parish houses, schools, and houses for teachers and catechists.

In the strangely coincidental ways in which God's providence works, another Jesuit Brother from the Irish Province came to Zambia (then Northern Rhodesia) in 1952, one year after Jim's arrival in Chikuni. This was Pat McElduff who in his younger years had done some of his apprenticeship as a tradesman in Rahugh on the borders of Westmeath and Offaly where, in the years before he joined the Jesuits, Jim himself had been trained. The two knew each other from these early years and now they found themselves working together again, this time on a larger canvas. And almost after the manner of the Apostles Peter and Paul, building responsibilities were assigned to them in different ways: Jim became responsible for all projects that belonged to Monze Diocese, while Pat took on those that belonged to the Jesuits (or Chikuni Mission). As a result of this arrangement, for the last period of his life in Zambia, from 1960 to the time of his return to Ireland in 1974, Jim lived in what was to become the Bishop's house in Monze. While he was happy there and got on very well with Bishop Corboy and the rest of the community, at times he felt almost out of his depth and yearned for more interaction with the fellow-Jesuits he had lived with in earlier days. In the way of many quiet people, things sometimes got through to Jim, making him feel that bit down in himself. However, as a solid religious man, he would not let this interfere with his commitment as a hard working Jesuit but would eventually regain his equilibrium through his prayer, work, community involvement and, sometimes, rest and better physical health.

Jim was a very agreeable companion, one who was easy and enjoyable to live with. He was quiet in his manner but this did not stop him enjoying a game of cards, a good movie or the comradeship of a walk in the evening with one of the community. He was greatly loved by the Batonga people among whom he worked and is particularly remembered for the concern he showed that their marriages be happy and stable and that their children attend school. He showed special kindness and understanding towards Jesuit scholastics newly arrived in the country and was particularly attentive to their health needs; many a young Jesuit received gentle but firm admonitions from him about taking their anti-malaria medicines or wearing a hat until acclimatised to the sun.

Ironically, it was malaria that brought Jim's years in Zambia to a close. He contracted fever in days long before Artemesin or other drugs could provide powerful protection. Though frequently quite unwell, he continued with his work as best he could, but in time developed a recurrent form of malaria that was intractable to treatment. In the circumstances, the Holy Rosary Doctor-Sisters (Lucy O'Brien, Maureen O'Keeffe, Eileen Kane) advised that he return permanently to Ireland, because remaining in Zambia would always mean serious health problems for him.

So it was that after 23 years in Zambia, from 1951 to 1974, Jim returned to Ireland and was re-incorporated into the Irish Province. Until his mid-80s he was busy, a wonderful man to have on your side, practical and resourceful, moving where he was needed, always concerned about those around him; ever seeking perfection in anything undertaken by him or any of those for whom he was responsible; and always, simply always, a solid man of God, devoted and faithful to his religious duties, serving the God he loved through what he could still do, building up others through his sympathetic and understanding nature. Jim, sparing of speech, gentle and perceptive, contributed massively to the smooth running of the five Irish houses in which he served. These were not always the havens of peace one would like to imagine. Belvedere, where he was Minister for seven years, was a settled (I nearly wrote entrenched) community, hard-working but not easy to administer. If Jim was quiet, he was also alert, and concerned about everyone around him. From his sick bed in Cherryfield he would admire and appraise the craft of workmen in the building opposite. His regular greeting of How are you? was no formality. He wanted to know. No wonder he is missed. May God be good to this deeply spiritual Jesuit.

Michael J Kelly

Dunne, Peter, 1917-1980, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/131
  • Person
  • 10 June 1917-31 August 1980

Born: 10 June 1917, Clonliffe Road, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1935, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1948, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1951, Holy Spirit Seminary, Aberdeen, Hong Kong
Died: 31 August 1980, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

◆ Biographical Notes of the Jesuits in Hong Kong 1926-2000, by Frederick Hok-ming Cheung PhD, Wonder Press Company 2013 ISBN 978 9881223814 :

Note from Paddy Finneran Entry
He came to Hong Kong as a young priest with Peter Dunne and 5 Scholastics - Liam Egan, Paddy Cunningham, Matt Brosnan, Tom O’Neill and Tony Farren. He spent two years at the Battery Path Language School learning Cantonese.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 55th Year No 4 1980

Obituary

Fr Peter Dunne (1917-1935-1980)

Peter Dunne arrived at the noviciate, Emo Park, on 7th September 1935, slight of build, pink of complexion (the boys in Belvedere later called him “Pinkie”) and with a very thin crop of blond hair that fought a losing battle to survive the years of his studies. He told us, as one of the many stories against himself, that the doctor had said that his hair was only baby hair and there would be no aftercrop.
Peter was pious, coming, as he did from a family that made great sacrifices to let him go. His mother was a widow and his only sister was a Little Sister of the Assumption. Peter was an only son though his mother has quite a number of brothers. Peter's piety was entirely natural and was filled with an active cheerfulness that saw him in the middle of every novitiate project from weeding the lake to exploring the Caves of Killowen. He had a very urban background, yet he took readily to life in the country, and his interest in nature stood him in good stead during his time in the colleges'.
His arrival in Rathfarnham at the end of the novitiate was a real home coming for him, and his three years at UCD were made happy by the many occasions he had to visit doctor, dentist or cross the Liffey to his own territory at Clonliffe Road, Yet he found the university studies hard going, and it was only sheer determination and his own spiritual resources that got him through. Tullabeg was in many ways a rest for him. There was not the rush of concentrated studies or the physical exhaustion that came with the daily ride to the 'Acad' and back that pulled so many down physically. Besides a reasonably slow pace of philosophical studies, there were plays and 'skits' to be performed - and Peter was always somewhere around in the wings or backstage: there was fishing on the river and, above all, there was the Ricci Mission Unit that was so active in those years in Tullabeg. Peter made a great success of its activities, chiefly because he took the trouble to answer personally the many who sent stamps and tinfoil, thanking them and encouraging their work. One sack of stamps arrived from a regular donor, containing besides parcels of stamps a whole roast chicken-alas, too long on the way to be edible.
Though Peter did come to like country life, it was with great joy that he set out again for his beloved Dublin to spend two happy years (1943-45) teaching in Belvedere, only a stone's throw from his home in Clonliffe Road. College life was really his métier, and it was a pity that his later career took a different turning. He was at his best training the under-13s in Jones's Road or leading the Field Club to Bull island or Donabate. He had an infectious cheerfulness, and with him the smallest incident of the day could be turned into a saga worthy of Seán O’Casey or P G Wodehouse. He was very much a man's man, and more often than not his contacts were those he met in 'The Buildings in Foley Street, Gloucester Street, and the places where the families of the Belvedere Newsboys Club members lived.
Peter went to theology after only two years in the colleges, and here his interest in the poor again showed itself. He was put in charge of those who came regularly to Milltown for material help. He had a little but outside the door of the Minister's House with seats where he would serve meals to those who were down and out or in temporary difficulties. Some times they were in need of cash, and Peter was a shrewd judge of the genuine and the bogus, I well remember one irate lady who had asked particularly for financial help. Peter judged that a large plate of sandwiches would be better for her. Having thrown the plate on the ground, she went off down the avenue yelling loudly that she was leaving the Church because the priest would not give her the cash her condition required:
His assignment to Hong Kong must have been a difficult one for his family and for himself. Indeed, he showed nothing but cheerfulness and enthusiasm for the work before him. The Chinese language he found difficult, not being gifted with great facility in academic fields, but he quickly found his niche as minister of the Language School. His duties often took him to the city, and he came to know as many shopkeepers and hawkers as he had known in Dublin. It stunned his contemporaries, as it must have stunned himself, when he was appointed editor of a new project: a weekly magazine for youth in Chinese. Having neither a strong grasp of the language nor a style of life that could stand up to the rigours of meeting a magazine deadline every week, his health declined and he became a prey to anxiety.
One compatible job he did have at that time (the mid 1950s) was that of chaplain to the Hong Kong Volunteers. He really relished the opportunities it offered him, and his return from the annual camp was the occasion of endless uproarious stories of doings in the New Territories during the fortnight. He always had an ear for those in trouble, and I well remember the many cases of Irish soldiers in the British army who were referred to him. He would spend hours with them at the detention centre where they were imprisoned for fighting and other misdemeanours. There were young girls that had got into trouble whom he would visit at the "homes, and he always had a ready ear for the domestic staff when any of them bad problems, financial or otherwise.
He returned to Ireland to visit his ageing mother, and his indifferent health did not allow his return to Hong Kong. It did not however sever his connections with the East and the Chinese. He noted the needs of Chinese students living in Dublin, and gave much of his time to running a hostel for them - he called it Wah Yan House - in Dublin's Waterloo Road.
His motto could have been: “Do what you can and do it with all the strength that is in you”.
Three things impressed me particularly about Peter Dunne. The first was his obedience, which in the best sense of the word was “a blind obedience”. Secondly, his real humility, that made him think little of himself, and finally his great affection for the ordinary people with whom he always identified himself. My last memory of him was one Sunday after he had said Mass in a little country church near Cong. He came out to the churchyard, and going across to a group of young men leaning against the wall and chatting, greeted them with a bright “Goodmorrow, men. What's the fishing like in the lake these days?” He was all things to all men.

On his return from Hong Kong ,Peter spent the remaining 23 years of his life (1957-80) in Ireland as chaplain to the College of Technology, Kevin Street. Among his fellow-chaplains there down those years were Frs Laurence Kearns, Michael Morahan, Edmund O'Keefe and Brendan Murray.
In his early days at Kevin Street he took on a full work-load, teaching from 9 to 5 and even came back for more: from 7 to 9 pm. he attended to his bakery students. (At these late hours he used literally sit on one of the ovens!) This heavy burden of work was increased rather than diminished by the physical expansion of the College in the mid-1960s, when with the large new buildings, the student roll and staff numbers grew. When Peter first came to Kevin Street, it had only 30 whole-time teachers and less than a thousand students. Now (1980) it has about 200 whole-time teachers, and the students number over 2,000.
It is noteworthy that Peter’s heart attacks of c 1970 and 1972 followed this period of the College's growth and expansion, and were no mere coincidence. After these attacks, he had to adapt his life-style, take a less stressful pace of work, and even withdraw from class time-schedules. Instead, while undertaking full responsibility for teaching and chaplaincy work within the Bakery School, he had perforce to adopt a casual, by-the way approach to the students: loitering with intent' he called it, (Incidentally, for the last few years of his life the Bakery School, for both apprentices and student technicians, was running two shifts a day, 9 am-9 pm) Peter had an unusual gift, attested to constantly and appreciated by his Bakery School colleagues: that of being able to relate to the apprentice baker. The Bakers' Union, Dublin No. 1 Branch, sent a note of condolence on his death.
For a long time Peter ambitioned the setting up of a St Vincent de Paul Conference in Kevin Street: this in fact came about last Lent (1980). The “kids”, though not having time for meetings, offered two hours of their leisure time per week and did many a job of repair and renovation in the homes of the old, As regards his apostolic influence, being a fisherman, used to playing his fish for long hours, Peter was not out for a 'quick kill' or instant conversion: goo relations were more important. His philosophy, where students and staff were concerned, could be summed up in the ideal of the happy family.
The newly-elected President of the local Students' Union, at the grave side in Glasnevin, turned to a companion and said: “To me Peter Dunne was a unique priest”. A member of the Kevin Street staff said: “There are some people in this College that you wouldn't like to be seen talking to; there are some you wouldn't talk to, but everyone could talk to Fr Dunne”. May he rest in peace!

Egan, Michael, 1875-1961, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/458
  • Person
  • 12 March 1875-02 January 1961

Born: 12 March 1875, Cork City
Entered: 07 September 1892, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 26 July 1908, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1911, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 02 January 1961, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Leeson St, Dublin community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1900 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 7th Year No 3 1932

Milltown Park :
Father Devitt celebrated his 60 years in the Society, I2th May. The day before, Mr. Sologran, class beadle, read an address in Latin, offering him the congratulations of his class. The theologians gave him a spiritual bouquet of Masses, Communions, prayers. Forty-five visitors came to dinner, Archbishop Goodier SJ, Father Provincial, and Fathers from all the houses were there. Father Rector spoke first, recalling Father Devitt's long connection with Milltown, and his life's greatest work, the teaching of moral to almost all the priests of our province, and to many others. Father Provincial read a letter from Father General, who sent his congratulations, and applied 60 Masses “ut Deus uberrime benedicat eum”. He spoke of Father Devitt's gifts of head and heart, and of the debt of gratitude owed him by many within and without the Society for help and guidance. In a charming speech Father Michael Egan told of his early meetings with Father Devitt as Rector Clongowes, how his genial kindness won the love and respect of all. In the Society he found him beloved by his Community. As a theologian in Father Devitt's class he still remembers what Father Rector referred to as “the Saturday morning trepidation,” and still remembers the unfailing politeness which
somehow failed (and fails) to calm it. Mr, Bustos, senior of the moral class, read a Latin poem in honour of the Jubilarian.
Father Devitt replied in a strong clear voice. He thanked those present and those who had written assuring him of their prayers and congratulations. It was hard not to feel deeply moved by the kindness shown him, “to resist sombre reflections as I gaze round and see the snow-flakes of time settling on the now venerable brows of those I taught.” He wished everyone the long life and happiness which he himself enjoyed and still enjoys, in the Society”.

Irish Province News 11th Year No 2 1936

Leeson St :
In January last Father Michael Egan was appointed by the Senate of the National University to succeed his lifelong friend and colleague, Professor H. C. McWeeney, as Professor of Mathematics in University College, Dublin. Father Egan's work as a lecturer on Mathematics in the College goes back to the days of the old College in Stephen's Green, where he was one of the two Fellows in Mathematics on the ordinary staff of the College. He inherits from his late colleague a school of Mathematics that has established its reputation as the leading school of that subject. In Ireland , and Father Egan has himself had no small share in building up this sound tradition.

Irish Province News 36th Year No 3 1961

Obituary :

Fr Michael Egan (1875-1961)

The death of Fr. Michael Egan in his eighty-sixth year breaks a link with the community that lived formerly in 86 St. Stephen's Green, and recalls many memories of those far-off days. To the younger generation in the present University College he was in the last years almost unknown; but the kind words that were spoken by so many on the occasion of his death revealed something of the many lasting friendships which Fr. Egan had formed in an unusually long academic career.
Michael Egan was born in Cork city in March 1875, and was one of a large and well-known family. His father, Barry Michael Egan, was head of a business firm in Patrick Street and his elder brother, Barry, was Lord Mayor of Cork at a time when the city was passing through a period of crisis and real danger. His sister still directs the family business in Cork, Michael went first to Christian Brothers' North Monastery, Cork, where he made his mark as a student of exceptional promise, both in Mathematics and in Classics. To the end of his days Fr. Egan was fond of re calling memories of his old school and never failed to express his gratitude to the Brothers for the high quality of their teaching. He went to Clongowes at the age of fifteen and had the distinction of being placed first in all Ireland in the old Middle Grade whilst still with the Brothers at Cork, and again in the Senior Grade in his last year at Clongowes. He was just seventeen years old when he entered the noviceship at Tullabeg in September 1892. Fr. Sutton was his Master of Novices.
As soon as his noviceship was finished, he began his career as a student in the former Royal University, where he was encouraged to specialise in pure Mathematics, for which study he had from the first exceptional gifts. He took his B.A. in 1897 and his M.A. in 1899. The Juniors were still at Milltown Park for the year 1894-5, but Michael Egan appears as a solitary Junior at Milltown Park in the following year; he was moved to Belvedere for the final year before his B.A. The next year was spent as a teaching scholastic at Clongowes; but he was back at Belvedere for the final year before his M.A. These various experiences of life as a scholastic in the nineteenth century left some happy and sometimes odd memories with which he used to surprise the Fathers in Leeson Street forty or fifty years after the event.
In 1899, having won his M.A. with great distinction, Fr. Egan went to Louvain where he spent two happy years in a house which had then an unusually large Irish community. He had particularly vivid memories of a dream which came to him after a long-table dinner, during which he was able for the first time to grasp in its fullness the real distinction between Essence and Existence; but, whenever be recalled this favourite memory he had to admit that the understanding faded with the dream next morning. From Louvain he came back for another two years to Clongowes, where he taught Mathematics in the higher classes. Finally, in the autumn of 1903 he was elected to a fellowship in the Royal University and joined the community at what is now Newman House as the sole scholastic in an elderly and very formidable community. From the memories which he was fond of recalling in later years it does not seem that the youngest member of the community had much difficulty in holding his own in these new surroundings. The climax came during the Royal Visit of 1904, when he stood on the steps of the old College and called the attention of the Fathers to the gracious manner in which Queen Alexandra had acknowledged their salutes. “Did you hear what she said?” he asked his Rector, who was no less a person than Fr. William Delany. “No”, said the Rector in his great innocence. She said: “Look, that is Egan the mathematician”. The story ends at that point.
Having spent two years as a very junior fellow of the Royal University, the future Fr, Egan went to Milltown for the four years of his theology, but retained his fellowship and the privilege of examining candidates for B.A. and M.A, in mathematics. He was ordained in 1907 and in later life there was sometimes a wistful glance backwards to the years in which he had hopes of spending his days as a professor of Dogma at Milltown Park. But the call of Mathematics was too strong and Fr. Egan came back to the College in 1908, just one year before the change from the old Royal University to the new University College of the National University of Ireland. The former fellowships ceased to exist and Fr. Egan found himself a Lecturer in Mathematics, with his lifelong friend and colleague, Henry McWeeney, as his Professor and with Arthur Conway as Professor of Mathematical Physics. It was a brilliant combination, and in his first years as Lecturer Fr. Egan published several mathematical papers which were notable for their elegant form and also for the fact that, almost without exception, they were written in French and printed in French mathematical journals.
From 1909 to 1938 Fr. Egan held his post as Lecturer beside Professor McWeeney and from 1938 to 1947 he held the Chair of Mathematics in succession to his old friend. In 1943 he was awarded the degree of D.Sc. honoris causa by the National University. As the years went by, it became more and more plain that Fr. Egan's former zeal for mathematical problems was fading before a new and ever-increasing interest in his life. From his first years as a priest Fr. Egan was a zealous giver of retreats to communities of Irish nuns, and it soon became plain that he had exceptional gifts as a director of souls. He had a fund of human wisdom, combined with great patience, a very genuine sympathy for those who were in trouble, and an ever-present and most helpful sense of humour. Some of the lighter verses with which he sought (usually with great success) to soothe the spiritual doubts and scruples of his clients were printed in the form of a booklet some years before his death; but the best of them, which he could always recite with unfailing memory, had to be omitted for one reason or another. In his last years, when the labour of giving a full retreat was too much for his failing strength, he continued his apostolate by constant visits to the sick and by personal visits to those whom he knew best in the convents of Dublin and one or two favoured sites outside of Dublin.
Two small volumes of domestic exhortations, which the Fathers in Leeson Street were privileged to hear in their small Domestic Chapel, were published in book form: We would see Jesus (1940) and the House of Peace (1942). They have much of the quality of quiet confidence and spiritual peace which was a marked characteristic of Fr. Michael Egan in his last years. He had, and it is a rare gift, the ability to grow old easily and peacefully. His place in the community was the place of an older Father whom all in the house loved and respected. In his last illness he moved from Leeson Street to St. Vincent's Hospital; but he was in fact moving to a house which had been almost his second home. Not only had he constantly visited the sick, but - quietly and without ostentation - he had heard the Confessions of the nurses in the hospital for many long years and had given them the full benefit of his wise and kindly direction. The end came peacefully as might have been expected; and those who had good reason to be grateful to him were eager to speak of his kindness and to recall this or that memory which had meant so much to them in the past.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Michael Egan SJ 1857-1961
Fr Michael Egan was born in Cork city in March 1875 of a well known Cork family. He received his early education at North Monastery and Clongowes, becoming a Jesuit in 1892.

From his schooldays he showed remarkable intellectual ability, especially in mathematics and classics. In 1903 he was elected to a Fellowship in the Royal University. After his ordination in 1907 he became lecturer in Mathematics and University College Dublin, succeeding to the Professorship in 1938, a chair which he filled till his retirement in 1947.

From his early years as a priest he was a zealous giver of retreats, and all his life displayed and used to the full exceptional gifts as a director of souls, especially in the regions of higher prayer. A man endowed with a whimsical sense of humour, he was also gifted in the poetical line, and he published a volume of light humorous poetry some years before his death. He also published two volumes of his lectures on spiritual topics : “We would see Jesus” and “The House of Quiet”. His talents were not confined to the academic sphere or intellectual life. He was for many years Superior of the Residence at Leeson Street and acted also as Vice-Provincial.

His last days were spent in almost unbelievable calm and tranquility, in full command of his faculties, in St Vincent’s Nursing Home, where he died in the same fashion, as it were imperceptibly shuffling off this mortal coil, o January 2nd 1961. He was well beloved and appreciated by his brethren in religion, missed by the poor and mourned in many a convent throughout the land.

Erraught, Michael, 1913-1971, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/142
  • Person
  • 17 May 1913-13 March 1971

Born: 17 May 1913, Tralee, County Kerry
Entered: 01 February 1934, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1945, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1948, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 13 March 1971, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

Entered 01 February 1931 - Left 01 May 1933 - Re-entered 01 February 1934;
Younger brother of Joe Erraught - RIP 1974
Early education at St Mary’s CBS Tralee, County Kerry
Studied BA at UCD
Tertianship at Rathfarnham

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 46th Year No 3 1971
Obituary :
Fr Michael Erraught SJ (1913-1971)

Fr Michael Erraught died in Dublin after an intermittent series of alarms patiently accepted. His health began to give cause for anxiety when he was engaged on the mission staff, attached to Tullabeg as a base.
His fine upstanding frame and the intensity of his application to work - agere quod agis made too many demands and the recurrence of a heart complaint at Tullamore, Galway and finally Leeson Street followed by tedious convalescences came to an issue on March 13th. Fr Joe, his brother, naturally would have desired to be near him more continuously in the last days but a mission in which he was engaged in the Crescent precluded more than a fugitive visit; Michael's strong family affection deprived of this solace was indulged partly by the devoted attention of their only sister, Mrs McSweeney, to whom and to Joe we offer sincerest sympathy.
Michael followed Joe to the novitiate after an interval of three years in 1931 and was deep into his second year when superiors thought his health because of his intensity, would benefit by a break. It was characteristic of him that when he was departing for home his words of farewell to his fellow novices were : “I'll be back”. So it was and in February 1934 he returned to repeat and complete the novitiate regime. After Emo Park, Rathfarnham and a degree; 1939 Tullabeg for philosophy, 1942 Clongowes for one year, 1943 Milltown, 1946 the priesthood. Clongowes again after the tertianship, 1953 Mungret where, having proved-if proof was necessary, his capacity, he became Prefect of Studies for five years; here among other tasks he largely innovated the laboratory and equipment for pursuing Intermediate and Leaving courses of chemistry and physics. He returned again to Clongowes in 1961 and thence to Tullabeg where from 1967-70 he engaged in mission and retreat work to the people.
It is apparent from the above that great part of his priestly work was transacted in the classroom. His aptitude was patent, his results in public examinations convincing. Classes were prepared with care, exercises corrected often in detail and boys realised that if industry was demanded it was not a one-way pact.
As a young priest his retreats were highly appreciated by the nuns and his devotion and patience as a confessor bought golden opinions; here again lectures were prepared fastidiously, every quotation checked and co-ordinated; his experience in this work was an augury of efficiency when finally he was drafted to this work as a whole-time occupation; on the mission staff he had the habit in his sermons of preparing verbatim his complete text.
He was particularly a community man not displaying or desiring to engage in visiting houses other than our own; at home and abroad, he had a nice sense of humour - he was devoted to his friends of whom naturally Fr Joe came first.
He may on occasion have been severe in his criticism of slovenly work but magnanimity asserted itself when the crisis had passed.
On the advent of ill-health he still endeavoured to fulfil his regular chores with whatever added sacrifices these entailed; his energy even in the last days at Leeson Street enabled him to complete the two booklets referred to in the last issue and his fortitude under trial, as it were, that he was being found out in that most sensitive trait of his make-up, was most admirable. May he rest in peace.

Finegan, Francis J, 1909-2011, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/717
  • Person
  • 18 February 1909-07 March 2011

Born: 18 February 1909, Glasgow, Lanarkshire, Scotland / Castleblaney, County Monaghan
Entered: 01 September 1927, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1941, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1945, Sacred Heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 07 March 2011, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

Early education at St Macartan's College, Monaghan
Tertianship at Rathfarnham

by 1927 at Berchmanskolleg, Pullach, Germany (GER S) studying
by 1956 at St Albert’s Seminary, Ranchi, India (RAN) teaching
by 1976 at Nantua, Ain, France (GAL) working
by 1979 at Belley, France (GAL) working

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/fin-again/

The country, the Society of Jesus, the Irish Province and the Gardiner Street community combined beautifully and joyously to celebrate the first Irish Jesuit to reach the venerable
age of one hundred years. Forty Jesuits gathered on 18 February to toast Proinsias O Fionnagain, our “great gift of grace”, as Derek Cassidy, Superior of the Gardiner Street community, said in his warm, welcoming words. What were the messages and gifts? Read more: President Mary McAleese sent a moving letter and a cheque which topped €2500. From Derek Cassidy a card for one hundred Masses. Fr Provincial read a letter from Fr General who mentioned, among many compliments and accomplishments, the fact that Frank’s piano playing has not led to arthritic fingers. John Dardis also read from a poem composed by Fr Tom McMahon before he died, for this special milestone in Frank’s life and the life of the Province. Then the man himself spoke: in Engliish, Irish, French and Latin we heard lovely lines from St Paul and Cardinal Newman. The emotions must have been bubbling away inside, but the voice, apart from a faltering pause, was clear and strong. Then a lovely surprise: Mrs Bridie Ashe and her staff (who pulled out all the stops with the balloons, banners and photos all over the house of Frank wearing the Lord Mayor’s chain of office) presented a beautiful sculpture of St Ignatius, brought from Spain.
The beginning was memorable. All forty diners were upstanding when Frank made his entrance, led by Tom Phelan playing the bagpipes. Tears were wiped from eyes as the musical melody harmonised the room, and Frank took his place between Derek Cassidy and John Dardis, and opposite his nephew who had flown in from Berlin for the party. Next month there will be another celebration for family. Finegan, fin, the end, is again and again and fin-again!

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/our-first-centenarian-an-t-athair-o-fionnagain/

Our first centenarian, An t-Athair Ó Fionnagáin
Wednesday 18 February sees a unique birthday. For the first time an Irish Jesuit has turned a hundred. In the face of Fr Proinsias Ó Fionnagáin you see a man prone to gratitude, with a wardrobe full of memories: of a Spartan early life in Monaghan during World War I; of noviciate in Tullabeg – Frank is the last survivor of that house. He was a teacher of classics in Crescent, Galway and Clongowes; and of philosophy in Ranchi, India. He is a writer, pianist, historian, archivist and librarian, and by his researches contributed heavily to the beatification of Dominic Collins. In 1975, as he qualified for the old age pension, he volunteered for the French mission, and dressed in beret and clergyman served two under- priested areas, Nantua and Belley, for seven years before returning to research and the Irish Mass in Gardiner Street. We thank God, as Frank himself does, for the blessings of his first hundred years.

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/jesuit-who-taught-saint-101/

Jesuit who taught saint turns 101
The Jesuit priest who taught Saint Alberto Hurtado English, Fr Frank Finnigan SJ, celebrated his 101st birthday on Thursday 18 February. He is the first Irish Jesuit to live to
such an age. As well as receiving the birthday wishes of his fellow Jesuits in the Gardiner St Community, he also got a congratulatory telegram and cheque from President McAleese. Fr Finnegan’s student Alberto Hurtado was a Chilean Jesuit who died in 1952 and was canonised on 23 October 2005. After joining the Jesuits he came to Ireland and stayed with the Jesuits in Rathfarnham where Fr Finnigan taught him. Fr Finnegan is a fluent Irish speaker. Also, he was a teacher of classics in Crescent, Galway and Clongowes, and a teacher of philosophy in Ranchi, India. He is a writer, pianist, historian, archivist and librarian. His researches contributed heavily to the beatification of Dominic Collins.

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/oldest-ever-irish-jesuit-goes-to-god/

Oldest-ever Irish Jesuit goes to God
Yesterday, 7 March, Fr Proinsias Ó Fionnagáin died peacefully in his room in Gardiner Street. Last month he had been touched and delighted to receive a message from President
McAleese, congratulating him on his 102nd birthday. He was the first and only Irish Jesuit to reach 100, and up to recently he thought nothing of walking across the city from Drumcondra to Milltown. In the last few days he had been rising later in the morning. On Sunday he celebrated a public Mass in Irish in Gardiner Street church. Then his strength faded rapidly, and yesterday he went to the Lord peacefully in his own bedroom. While he is remembered by many Irishmen as a teacher of Greek and Latin, he had also given years of his life as a missionary in India and a Curé in France. May he rest in peace.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 145 : Summer 2011

Obituary

Fr Prionsias Ó Fionnagáin (1909-2011)

18th February1909: Born in Glasgow (Nationality: Irish)
Early education at Castleblaney Boys' School and St. Macartan's Seminary
1st September 1927: Entered the Society at Tullabeg
2nd September 1929: First Vows at Tullabeg
1929 - 1932: Rathfarnham - Studied Classics at UCD
1932 - 1935: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1935 - 1937: Mungret College - Teacher
1937 - 1938: Clongowes Wood College - Teacher
1938 - 1942: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
31st July 1941: Ordained at Milltown Park
1942 - 1943: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1943 - 1952: Crescent College, Limerick – Teacher (Latin and Greek)
2nd February 1945: Final Vows
1952 - 1954: Clongowes – Teacher (Latin and Greek)
1954 - 1957: St. Albert's College, Ranchi, India - Teaching Philosophy
1957 - 1961: Crescent College – Teacher (Latin and Greek)
1961 - 1973: Leeson Street
1961 - 1973: Writer; Librarian
1962 - 1966: Assistant Eitor of Studies
1973 - 1974: Province Archivist
1974 - 1981: France - Curate in Parishes Nantua and Belley
1981 - 2011: SFX Gardiner Street - Work included assisting in the church; Writer; Librarian; House Historian and, in recent years, Aifreann an Phobail
7th March 2011: Died at Gardiner St

Fr Ó Fionnagáin was delighted to receive a message of congratulation from Her Excellency, President Mary McAleese, on the occasion of his 102nd birthday on February 18th last. In subsequent days he became noticeably weaker and tended to celebrate his Mass later in the day than usual. However this did not prevent him from preparing his sermon and celebrating the Sunday Mass as Gaeilge on the day before he died peacefully in his room.

Obituary by Barney McGuckian
Father Proinsias Ó Fionnagáin died peacefully, aged 102, in his room at St Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street, on the morning of March 7th, 2011. No other Irish Jesuit had ever reached such a venerable age. In command of all his faculties right up to the end, he had celebrated Aifreann an Phobail the previous morning and preached as Gaeilge as he had been doing for several years. In the last month of his life he was still capable of a full genuflection before the Blessed Sacrament each time he entered and left the omestic Chapel.

Of Monaghan Finegan (the one “n” was significant) farming stock, of which he was intensely proud, he was born in Glasgow on 18th February, 1909 but was taken to Ireland in early infancy. As an alert five-and-a-half year old, he remembered the start of the First World War. He was aware that the "big men were going out to fight”. His First Communion, a couple of years later, took the form of Holy Viaticum, as he was not expected to survive the night! He recalled distinctly his father telling him that the War was over, After early education in Castleblayney he became a boarder at St Macartan's Diocesan College. A thorough grounding in Greek, Latin and Irish would later stand him in good stead when he joined the Society at Tullabeg in 1927. A recurrent theme in his later conversation was the reasoning behind his appointment to teach in the Crescent, Limerick. The late Jimmy McPolin, a Crescent student and nephew of the Socius, John Coyne, could benefit from a good course in Classics! He used his knowledge of Irish to good effect through the years, celebrating Mass frequently through Irish after Vatican II authorised the use of the vernacular in Liturgy. He also published in Irish a number of monographs and biographies based on his assiduous research into Jesuit and Irish Church History. Although there is no evidence of his ever having concelebrated Mass himself, he assisted at community Concelebrated Masses. Even after his 100th birthday, with the help of Brother Gerry Marks, he often made his way on Sundays to the Latin Mass in St Kevin's, Harrington Street, where he was held in high regard by members of the Latin Mass Society. He never expressed any preference about the form his funeral should take but, as a mark of respect, Latin, Irish and English were all used in his Concelebrated Requiem Mass at St Francis Xavier's.

At UCD, he studied Classics, although his preference would have been for History. He subsequently taught Latin and Greek in Mungret, Crescent and Clongowes where his pupils still recall the invitation to join in the struggle to turn back the tide of barbarism'. Besides three years teaching philosophy in India and seven as a curate in France, at Nantua and Belley, most of his life was spent in historical research. He was in his element among documents, foraging around archives. Perhaps his most notable contribution in this area was his work on the Causes of the Irish Martyrs. Without his efforts, the Cause of Blessed Dominic Collins could well have been rejected by the relevant Roman Congregation. He argued strenuously and convincingly that although the Blessed had been a professional soldier at one stage in his life and was not an ordained priest, consequently not qualified to be a full Chaplain, his contribution during the Battle of Kinsale was purely religious. His only objective in coming to Ireland was to help consolidate the Catholic faith. Frank deduced from the documents, in particular those of his English captors, that Blessed Dominic could have been set free on condition of denying his faith and abandoning his Jesuit vocation. This Dominic resolutely refused to do.

A highpoint in his life was to have taught English to the future patron saint of Chile, Saint Alberto Hurtado, in 1931. He enjoyed recalling a day in the Dublin Mountains when the Saint volunteered to have a go when the proprietor of the land where they were having a picnic asked “Is there a shot among you?” Confidently, Alberto grabbed the proffered shot-gun and blew the billy-can tossed into the air to smithereens. He had done his military service in Chile and had his eye in.

Anything Frank did he seems to have done to the best of his ability. He was an accomplished pianist but in later years only played for personal pleasure. His attention to the garden was much appreciated in the houses where he lived. In later years he concentrated on flowers and plants, enhancing a number of window-sills around the house. He was tending his beloved gloxinias right up to the end of his life. He attributed his lack of interest in sport to the fact of ill-health in childhood that precluded much involvement in games.

Frank was devoted to his family and friends and carried on a correspondence with them, frequently inviting them to meals in the house. As his hearing was adequate right to the end (although occasionally selective), he could add to the table-talk with his inexhaustible store of anecdotes and corroborative details about events in Irish, British and Jesuit Province history. He never made the transition to the computer but remained faithful to his typewriter. One touching Mass card was from the family who serviced his typewriter over the years. Unfortunately he destroyed his diaries of many years, written in Irish and in his beautiful “copper-plate” hand-writing.

Frank was a man of strong and definite opinions to which he clung tenaciously. At times he could be feisty, a word he would never have used himself. He would have considered it in the same category as “ok” which he eschewed as an instance of encroaching “American vulgarity”. As the decades rolled on he seemed to mellow somewhat and learned to live with things as they were. However, even when well into his second century, there could be the occasional flare-up about personalities, attitudes, situations and decisions from an age long gone. Towards the end, although he would never accept help in preparing his breakfast porridge or doing his own laundry, symptomatic of a deep-seated independent streak, he admitted to some limitations and willingly conceded that it “can be lonely to be so old”.

He was delighted to receive what he described as a “splendid silver medallion” from Mary McAleese, Uachtaran na hEireann, on the occasion of his 102nd birthday. Members of the community who wished were formally invited to a private viewing in his room before 12 30 p.m. each day. The President's warm message of congratulations contained words, most à propos, from a speech she had given before Christmas 2010 at a Reception for Senior Citizens: bua na gaoise toradh na haoise (the gift of wisdom is the fruit of age). In the three weeks left to him after this event he began to become visibly feebler but this did not prevent him walking around the house and carrying on as usual. On Friday, February 25th he actually walked to the Polling Booth to cast his vote in the General Election. Ten days later, he died peacefully on his own in his room.

The “Nunc dimittis” of Simeon, that upright and good man, from Luke, the Gospel read on the occasion of his Final Vows over sixty-five years earlier in the Sacred Heart Chapel, the Crescent, Limerick, on February 2nd, 1945, featured again at his Final Requiem. On that day so long ago, the much desired peace of the nations following World War II was almost in sight. We can rest assured that an tAthair Proinsias is now enjoying a much more comprehensive and lasting peace. Ní bheidh a leithéid arís ann.

Finlay, Thomas A, 1848-1940, Jesuit priest and economist

  • IE IJA J/9
  • Person
  • 06 July 1848-08 January 1940

Born: 06 July 1848, Lanesborough, County Roscommon
Entered: 01 November 1866, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1880
Professed: 25 March 1885
Died: 08 January 1940, Linden Nuring Home, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death

Older brother of Peter Finlay - RIP 1929

by 1869 at Amiens France (CAMP) studying
by 1870 at Rome Italy (ROM) studying
by 1871 at Lacens College Germany (GER) Studying
by 1878 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Note from Peter Finlay Entry
Early education was at St Patrick’s Cavan. Admitted aged 15 by Edmund J O’Reilly, Provincial and his brother Thomas A Finlay was a fellow novice.
Note from James Redmond Entry
He studied Rhetoric at St Acheul, Amiens with Michael Weafer, Thomas Finlay and Peter Finlay, Robert Kane and Vincent Byrne, among others.

See: Morrissey, T. J. (2004). Thomas A. Finlay: Educationalist, editor, social reformer, 1848-1940.

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online
Finlay, Thomas Aloysius
by Thomas J. Morrissey

Finlay, Thomas Aloysius (1848–1940) and Peter (1851–1929), Jesuit priests, scholars, and teachers, were born at Lanesborough, Co. Roscommon, sons of William Finlay, engineer, and Maria Finlay (née Magan), who had four other children: three daughters, all of whom became religious sisters, and a son William, who became secretary of Cavan county council. Tom and Peter were educated at St Augustine's diocesan college, Cavan (predecessor to St Patrick's College), and in 1866 both entered the novitiate of the Society of Jesus at Milltown Park, Dublin. Subsequently, they were sent for studies to St Acheul, near Amiens, after which they moved in somewhat different directions.

Thomas Finlay went (1869) to the Gregorian University, Rome, and thence, after Garibaldi's invasion, to Maria Laach where he was trained (1871–3) in modern scientific methods and was impressed by the new agricultural policy of the Prussian government, an experience he drew on in his later work. On his return to Ireland (1873) Tom joined his brother at the Crescent, Limerick, where he stayed till 1876, acting as headmaster as well as teaching German and French. He also found time to publish, under the pseudonym ‘Thomas Whitelock’, a best-selling novel, The chances of war, based on the life of Owen Roe O'Neill, which went through several editions. In addition he wrote pamphlets and was co-founder of the periodical Catholic Ireland, which became the influential Irish Monthly. In 1877 he went to St Beuno's for theology, and was ordained in 1880. His self-reliance, great energy, equable temper, and gifts for making and keeping friends were already in evidence, as also his prowess as a conversationalist and a fisherman. In 1881 he was placed in charge for a short time of St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, near Tullamore, before being entrusted with the joint task of rector of Belvedere College, Dublin (1882–7), and fellow of the RUI in classics. In 1883 he and Peter were appointed joint professors of philosophy at UCD. He occupied the chairs of philosophy (1883–1900) and political economy (1900–30). Hence his unusual distinction of professing in three different disciplines – classics, philosophy, and political economy. Like Peter, he was a highly successful lecturer, noted for his clarity of exposition, and popular also with the students for his human qualities and his policy of promoting responsibility and independence. At Belvedere he built a new wing and purchased additional playing fields, while at the same time reconstructing the philosophy programme of the Royal University and responding to demands for retreats and spiritual lectures from the clergy of different dioceses. In 1887 he took up residence at UCD and turned again to writing as well as teaching. He translated articles from German on philosophy, and Stockle's History of philosophy. The extent and range of his articles during a busy life may be judged from the incomplete list of titles in R. J. Hayes's Sources . . . articles in Irish periodicals. He founded and edited the Lyceum magazine (1889–94) and the New Ireland Review (1894–1911), which was succeeded by Studies in 1912. In addition, as part of his deep involvement in the Irish cooperative movement, he founded and was an incisive editor of the Irish Homestead. In support of the movement, he traversed the country preaching the merits of being industrious and self-supporting, and won support among northern unionists as well as southern farmers. Sir Horace Plunkett (qv), founder of the movement, termed him ‘a remarkable living Irishman’ who had ‘largely moulded my own life work’, and who, ‘for a full half-century, laboured disinterestedly for the moral, social, and economic uplifting of the Irish poor’ (A page of Irish history, 246–7). Finlay's strong advocacy of high moral standards in public life made him enemies in the Irish parliamentary party; and his critical review of Cardinal James Gibbons, Our Christian heritage (1889), led to complaints to Rome from American Jesuits and his suspension from writing (1890–92).

Despite these varied activities, he was primarily an educationalist. Apart from his teaching in Jesuit schools and at UCD, he was a commissioner for intermediate education for many years, was active in establishing and administering a system of technical education at the start of the century, was editor-in-chief of the ‘School and College’ series of books for pupils and students, and inspired and guided those who created the Department of Agriculture and Technical Instruction. Moreover, he was for many years a prominent member of the senate of the NUI and of the governing body of UCD, and was chairman (1909–38) of the trustees of the NLI. Little wonder that his successor to the chair of economics, George O'Brien (qv), remarked in Studies (1940) that ‘to write about him is like writing about a number of persons rather than a single man’. He alleged that in forty-seven years Finlay ‘never broke an engagement, never missed a lecture, never was late for a meeting’. Finlay's retirement (1930) was marked by a collection to provide a presentation portrait (now in UCD) by Leo Whelan (qv). It was so generously subscribed that funds were available to endow an annual Finlay lecture on an economic theme; the first was given by John Maynard Keynes. Tom Finlay died 8 January 1940 in his ninety-first year. He had been an invalid from 1936.

The brothers were among the most influential academics in Ireland in the last quarter of the nineteenth and the first quarter of the twentieth centuries. Thomas was described by W. E. H. Lecky (qv) as probably the most universally respected man in Ireland. Peter, who professed theology in Britain, America, and Ireland for 44 years, was widely consulted on most aspects of theology and highly regarded for his gifts of exposition.

Provincial consultors' minute book, 20 Feb. 1890 (Irish Jesuit archives, Dublin); Irish Jesuit Province News, Dec. 1929 (private circulation); ‘Sir Horace Plunkett on Professor Finlay's career as social reformer’, Fathers of the Society of Jesus, A page of Irish history: story of University College, Dublin, 1883–1909 (1930), 246–57; W. Magennis, ‘A disciple's sketch of Fr T. Finlay’, Belvederian, ix (summer 1931), 19; obit., Anglo-Celt, 13 Jan. 1940; George O'Brien, ‘Father Thomas A. Finlay, S.J., 1848–1940’, Studies, xxix (1940), 27–40; Aubrey Gwynn, obit., Irish Province News, Oct. 1940 (private circulation); R. J. Hayes (ed.), Sources for the history of Irish civilization: articles in Irish periodicals (1970), ii, 310–12; Thomas Morrissey, Towards a national university: William Delany, S.J. (1835–1924) (1983); Trevor West, Horace Plunkett: co-operation and politics (1986)

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 2nd Year No 2 1927

University Hall :
On November 16th the Community at Lesson St. celebrated the Diamond Jubilee of Fr T Finlay. As a scholastic, Fr Finlay helped Fr. Matt Russell to found the Irish Monthly and the Messenger. The latter periodical ceased to appear after a short time; it was to be revived later, again under Fr Finlay's inspiration. He took a leading part in conducting the brilliant but short-lived “Lyceum”, and its successor the New Ireland Review. For Belvedere College his rectorship represented, until quite lately, the high-water mark of its success. Since 1883 he has been a Professor at University College, first under the Royal and then under the National University. During that time he has been prominent in many movements for the betterment of his Country. He was a member of the Boards of National and of Intermediate Education, is still Chairman of the National Library, Committee, has organised food depots for the poor, while his work for industrial and agricultural co-operation has won him fame in many lands. As a preacher and a lecturer his success has been extraordinary. And though he no longer appears in the pulpit, his power and his popularity as a lecturer are as great as ever. From 1912 to 1922 he was Superior in Leeson St, and President of University Hall.

Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934

Leeson St :
Monday, November 20th, was a red-letter day in the history of Leeson street, for it witnessed the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the House's foundation. In November, 1833. the Community came into being at 86 St Stephen's Green, where it remained until 1909, when the building was handed over to the newly constituted National University. The Community, however, survived intact and migrated to a nearby house in Lesson Street, where it renewed its youth in intimate relationship with the Dublin College of the University.
Its history falls this into two almost equal periods, different, indeed, in many ways, yet essentially one, since the energies of the Community during each period have been devoted to the same purpose, the furtherance of Catholic University Education in Ireland. A precious link between the two eras is Father Tom Finlay, who was a member of the Community in 1883, and ever since has maintained his connection with it. His presence on Monday evening, restored to his old health after a severe illness was a source of particular pleasure to the whole gathering. It was also gratifying to see among the visitors Father Henry Browne, who had crossed from England at much personal inconvenience to take part in the celebration. Not only was Father Browne a valued member of the Community for over thirty years, but he acquired additional merit by putting on record, in collaboration with Father McKenna, in that bulky volume with the modest title " A Page of Irish History," the work achieved by the House during the first heroic age of its existence. It was a pleasure, too, to see hale and well among those present Father Joseph Darlington, guide, philosopher and friend to so many students during the two periods. Father George O'Neill, who for many years was a distinguished member of the Community, could not, alas. be expected to make the long journey from his newer field of fruitful labor in Werribee, Australia. Father Superior, in an exceptionally happy speech, described the part played by the Community, especially in its earlier days of struggle, in the intellectual life of the country. The venerable Fathers who toiled so unselfishly in the old house in St. Stephens Green had exalted the prestige of the Society throughout Ireland. Father Finlay, in reply, recalled the names of the giants of those early days, Father Delany, Father Gerald Hopkins, Mr. Curtis and others. Father Darlington stressed the abiding influence of Newman, felt not merely in the schools of art and science, but in the famous Cecilia Street Medial School. Father Henry Browne spoke movingly of the faith, courage and vision displayed by the leaders of the Province in 1883, when they took on their shoulders such a heavy burden. It was a far cry from that day in 1883, when the Province had next to no resources, to our own day, when some sixty of our juniors are to be found, as a matter of course preparing for degrees in a National University. The progress of the Province during these fifty years excited feelings of admiration and of profound gratitude , and much of that progress was perhaps due to the decision, valiantly taken in 1883 1883, which had raised the work of the Province to a higher plane.

Irish Province News 15th Year No 2 1940
Obituary :
Father Thomas Finlay
When the Editor of “Province News” did me the honour of inviting me to write a notice of Father Finlay's life, he added a comment on the usual summary of dates which he
enclosed from the annual Catalogues : “Never did Catalogues conceal so completely the life of a Jesuit as Father Finlay's Catalogues conceal his splendid and most active life.” There is a great deal of truth in this comment, though the fault does not lie with the compiler of the annual Catalogues. From his early years as a Scholastic in Rome, Maria Laach, Limerick and St. Beuno's, Father Tom was never lacking in that remarkable power of initiative which enabled him to attempt and accomplish so much during his long life of ninety-one years. His initiative was largely personal, and many of the works for which he was known throughout the country are not even mentioned in the official records of the Catalogues. Apart from his activities, Father Tom's fame was largely due to his great gifts of personal charm, sympathetic kindness and quiet humour. No man was better. fitted to make friends everywhere, and Father Tom made and kept a host of friends during his long and most useful life. Even his birthplace is matter for dispute among the learned. He was always claimed as a Cavan man; but a record is extant from his novitiate, in which he himself has entered his birth-place as Lanesborough, Co. Roscommon. The mystery is solved by a reminiscence, of which he was proud. His father was an engineer on the Shannon River works, and young Tom Finlay was born on an island just north of Lough Ree, which his father was later to submerge beneath the waters of the Shannon. One of his favourite reminiscences was of a Hedge-schooI which he attended somewhere near the Shannon in the early fifties. The master used to test the ability of his pupils by making them spell “Antitrinitarian.” But discipline was too severe for the engineer's young son, and he ran away home from class on the second or. third day. He was then sent to school at St Patrick's, Cavan, where he remained until he entered the Jesuit novitiate at Milltown Park, on November 12, 1866. He took his first vows at Milltown on the Feast of St. Stanislaus, 1868. Just seventy years later it was any privilege to say Mass for Father Tom at Linden Convalescent Home on the Feast of St Stanislaus, 1938. He had then been an invalid for two years and was almost ninety years old. He had been wheeled into the Convent Chapel in a chair, and heard his Jubilee Mass in the midst of the patients and children of Linden. “Consummatus in brevi explevit tempera multa.” The young novice of 1868 can have little dreamed how many long years lay before him. But there was a great deal of simple novice's piety about Father Tom in his last years. Day by day he was wheeled into the Chapel for his morning Mass; and it was seldom indeed that he would allow his nurse to keep him away from the Chapel for the daily Rosary, which he loved to recite with the other patients every evening. From Milltown he was sent to the French Juniorate at Saint-Acheul. where he spent part of the year 1869. Then, with Father Vincent Byrne as his companion, he was sent to the Gregorian at Rome, where they witnessed the stirring scenes of the Vatican Council and Garibaldi entry into Rome. In 1936, Father Vincent McCormick, then Rector of the Gregorian visited Dublin, and stayed in Lesson Street, where Father Finlay was still resident. He was introduced as a past student of the Gregorian. “And when were you in Rome?” asked the Rector, not realizing how old his new acquaintance was “At the Vatican Council” was the smiling answer, and Father Tom’s eyes were twinkling, for he felt that he had scored a point. Garibaldi's entrance into Reine threw the Gregorian into confusion, and Father Tom was sent to Maria Laach, where he spent the next two years (1871-73). It was here that he was impressed by the new agricultural policy of the Prussian government - a lesson in practical economics that he was later to turn to most practical uses. And it was from the German Fathers at Maria Laach that Father Tom received his training in modern scientific methods, which (for a time, at least) made him anxious to specialise in Biology. His intellectual activity during these years must have been remarkable. When he became Professor of Metaphysics in Father Delany's University College ten years later, one of his chief enterprises was to bring Irish Catholic students into contact with modern German thought by the translation of German works on Scholastic Philosophy.
From 1873-76 Mr. Thomas Finlay was teaching his class at the Crescent College, Limerick, with extra work as French and German master and (for the last two years) as Prefect of Studies. A full programme for most men. and the work was not lessened by the fact that the Irish schools were adapting themselves to the new Intermediate System in these years. Mr Finlay's results were brilliant in the new system of competitive examinations, but that did not prevent him from writing his historical novel, “Chances of War,” during these same years. As an old priest, with a long record of useful work behind him, he was fond of telling a story that happened in these Limerick years. Some of the older Fathers found this young scholastic too enterprising, and complaints reached the Irish Provincial, who was a firm believer in the established order of things. Father Tuite summoned the budding author to his presence, and gently suggested to him that “he should remain in his legitimate obscurity.” But the Society has its own ways of checking too great enterprise for a time, and Mr. Finlay was sent to St. Beuno's for his four years of Theology in 1877.
Father Tom was ordained in 1880, he lived to say the Jubilee Mass of his ordination in 1930. There is no trace of his Tertianship in the official Catalogues, and the reason is not far to seek. When Father Tom emerged from Theology in 1881 the Irish Province was faced with an unusual responsibility. The Catholic University which had been founded, with Newman as Rector, in 1851, had failed, so far as practical results were concerned. But the long struggle for equality of rights in University education had at long last met with a partial response from the English Government of the day. The Royal University of Ireland was founded as an examining body, with a limited number of endowed fellowships, in 1881, and the Irish Hierarchy invited Father William Delany, whose energy and ability had made Tullabeg a centre of intellectual life, to take over control of University College under the new conditions. Father Finlay was sent to Tullabeg without further delay, to assist Father Delany as Assistant Prefect of Studies. From Tullabeg a small group of Jesuit Fathers came to Temple Street in Dublin, whilst the Bishops were negotiating the final transfer of University College. As soon as the teaching staff of the new College was formed, with Father Delany as first Rector, Father Finlay was nominated to one of the fellowships in the Royal University, and was appointed Professor of Metaphysics. He held this chair until 1900, when he resigned it in favour of his most brilliant student in these early years, the present Professor William Magennis. Meanwhile, another of his brilliant students, William Coyne, had been appointed Professor of Political Economy. University College suffered a sore loss by William Coyne's death in 1904 and Father Tom Finlay, who had meanwhile taken a leading part in the Co-operative Movement throughout the country, took over the vacant Chair of Political Economy in the same year, He held this chair until the end of the Royal University in 1909; and was immediately appointed to the same chair in the new National University of Ireland. It was this chair that he resigned in 1930, having taught his classes without interruption for forty-seven years (1883-1930). It was his boast that, during all those years he had never omitted a lecture for ill-health or any other reason. God had certainly blessed him with a wonderfully strong and harmonious constitution.
During the first five years of his new career, Father Finlay was not resident in St. Stephen's Green, but was Rector of Belvedere College (1883-87) with his duties as fellow and professor of the Royal University as an extra charge. It is indeed hard to understand how any man can have thrown himself with such energy into his various activities as Father Finlay did during these early years. In Belvedere the new school-buildings were rising as proof of his keen organising ability; and they were only the symbol of an active intellectual life that was attracting general attention to the College. Father Finlay planned a whole series of school text-books and copy books that were to help him pay off the debts incurred in the erection of the new buildings. But this policy was checked for a time, and Father Finlay left Belvedere for University College in 1887. Memories still survive among some old inhabitants of North Dublin : Father Tom Finlay, as a young, vigorous and good-looking priest, riding a fine, black horse down the streets of Dublin to the Phoenix Park. For the Rector of Belvedere College was a conspicuous figure in the social life of Dublin City at that time. The friendships which Father Tom made in the 'eighties and nineties opened up a new sphere of activity, which led to his becoming one Of the best-known and influential priests in the country. His influence in Government circles was very great. He was appointed a Commissioner of National Education, a Trustee of the National Library, and a member of various Royal Commissions. His word was often decisive in the appointment of some Catholic to a post that had hitherto been jealously reserved by the Protestant ascendency, and Father Tom had the knack of making himself liked as well as respected for his solid judgment and courageous support of what he held to be good and true. During these same years he founded and edited two notable monthly magazines : “The Lyceum” (1889-94), and the “New Ireland Review” (1894-1911). There is no space here to tell in any detail the story of Father Tom Finlay's work for the Irish Co-operative Movement, by which he will probably be chiefly remembered in Irish history. It was work that could only be done by a man who had attained the special position which he held in Irish public life. But it is worth recording that gratitude to Father Tom was felt by the poor as well as the rich, for he would spare no time and trouble if he thought the Irish people could be helped by his labourers. His memory is perhaps most cherished .in Foxford Co. Mayo, where he took a leading part in the establishment of the Providence Mills, that have been founded and managed from the first by the Irish Sisters of Charity. During his last illness two of the workers in the Mills were married in Foxford. They were old friends of Father Tom, and they were not satisfied until they had travelled to Dublin in one of the lorries owned by the Mills, to get the old priest's blessing on their married life. When news of his death reached Foxford this year, telegrams of condolence were sent by the staff as a whole, and by some of his personal friends in the Foxford Mills. A notice of Father Finlay's life would be incomplete without some reference to the out-door sports which he had always clung to, in the midst of his busiest years. He was a firm believer in the policy of one good holiday a week, for which good Jesuit tradition can be quoted. His own tastes favoured fishing and shooting, and his friendships. through the country gave him opportunities that were sometimes perhaps the subject of envious comment. Father Tom and his brother Father Peter were keen sportsmen, but it is not certain that their skill was equal to their interest in the sport. Both men were individualists; and their individualism was sometimes erratic in quality, One leading Irish statesmen still has memories of a day's shooting on the lands of O'Conor Don. The party went to to the bog after breakfast; and a council of war was held during the lunch interval. The more cautious members gave it as their opinion that there was only one completely safe position in the field. You could get it by drawing a straight line between the two brothers Finlay! Even his brethren in Leeson Street were sometimes inclined to be sceptical. To the very end, when Father Tom was already long past eighty he made it a practice of. going off for a few days fishing in the Easter holidays, and Good Friday was not complete unless Father Tom brought home a salmon for the community. It was always welcome; but some at least of the Fathers used to murmur that perhaps a faithful Gilly in Co. Wexford was as much responsible for the salmon as Father Tom. But that was a joke that no one would venture to make in Father Tom’s presence. The end came, after four long years of illness, on January 8th. 1940. Father Tom had been stricken down in Leeson Street in the early autumn of 1936, and ever since he had been confined to his bed-room and an invalid chair. It was a long trial, which he bore with wonderful patience, and it was good to think that so many of his friends showed their loyalty and gratitude to him by their frequent visits and messages of sympathy. He died peacefully, having spent the last two days in almost continuous prayer. The funeral Mass at Gardiner Street gave a last opportunity for a tribute of respect and affection, which, once more, revealed the wide connections that Father Tom Finlay had made in his long and laborious
life. May he rest in peace. “A. Gwynn”

Finucane, James, 1878-1957, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/153
  • Person
  • 25 December 1878-25 January 1957

Born: 25 December 1878, Cahirconlish, County Limerick
Entered: 14 August 1895, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 28 July 1912, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1914, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 25 January 1957, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin community at the time of death

by 1900 in Vals France (LUGD) studying
by 1902 in Saint Stanislaus, Beirut, Syria (LUGD) studying Arabic
by 1903 in Collège Saint-François Xavier, Alexandria, Egypt (LUGD) Teacher
by 1912 at Hastings, Sussex, England (LUGD) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 21st Year No 1 1946

Extracts from a letter of Fr. Patrick McGrath, S. J., St. Ignatius, Richmond, Melbourne, to Fr. Finucune, 10-9-945. Fr. McGrath is an old Crescent boy who while stationed at the Crescent 34 years ago volunteered for the (then) Australian Mission. :
“Your letter arrived just in time for the celebration of the Golden Jubilee. Besides the House celebration there was a Parish celebration in our Hall. I knew nothing about it till three days before. Since I came to Australia I have spent most of my time between Melbourne and Sydney as Parish Priest. I did some six years' teaching in St. Aloysius, Sydney, twelve year's Parish Priest there, and the rest of my time in Melbourne as assistant, but mostly as Parish Priest. I broke down in Sydney. The hilly land there was too much for my growing years, and after a rest of a few months in our Theologate at Pymble I was sent back here as a Curate and I was very glad of it. I certainly never regretted coming to Australia.
Our Parish here is a very large one, and on the whole a very Catholic one, made up almost entirely of working people, for the most part very sincere and practical Catholics and most generous and easy and pleasant to work with. The same may be said of our Parish in Lavender Bay, North. Sydney,
The church of St. Ignatius in this Parish is a magnificent one, pure Gothic, in a commanding position, with a spire 240 feet high, the most perfect and beautiful spire in Australia. The stone of the church is Blue Stone but the upper part of the spire is white.
Looking up the Irish Catalogue a few days ago I was surprised to find that I know so few there now. Here in Australia the Irish Jesuits are dying out. The Vice-province is going on well. It is fully equipped with everything, novitiate, scholasticate with Juniors and Philosophers, and a special house for Theology, and we have this year a tertianship with 14 Australian Tertians. We want more novices, but there is good hope that there will be an increase this year. Our colleges here are doing very well. Both in Sydney and Melbourne there is a day-school and a boarding-school. The buildings in both places are first class”.

Irish Province News 32nd Year No 2 1957

Obituary :

Fr James Finucane (1878-1957)

Fr. Finucane was born at Carrigparson, Co. Limerick, and educated at the Crescent, entering the Society at Tullabeg in 1895. He studied Philosophy at Vals and then, as his health seemed precarious, he went to the drier climate of the Levant, continuing his studies at Beirut and teaching for two years in our college in Alexandria. Next came five years teaching in Mungret, at a period when higher studies were successfully undertaken there and many entered for university examinations. His first two years of Theology were passed at Milltown Park, and his third year at Ore Place, Hastings, then the theologate of the Paris Province. After his ordination in 1912 he went on at once to his Tertianship, and then spent eight years in Mungret as Prefect, Minister and Procurator of the farm. In 1922 he went to Clongowes where he taught and managed the farm until 1940. Then, after a few years teaching at the Crescent, he went to Leeson St, as Procurator, until his health declined so much that it was thought advisable to send him to Rathfarnham, where he could avoid to a large extent the labour of climbing stairs. He died in St. Vincent's Nursing Home, 96 Lower Leeson St., on 25th January.
It is probable that Fr. Finucane will be best remembered for his long association with Clongowes - and it is both as a farmer and a teacher of French that he will be remembered. The years there were happy years for him; he liked his work on the farm and his classes furnished him with a real interest: it might almost be said, indeed, that his classes were for him a delightful hobby, for though he taught several of them, he was not a full-time teacher. Old loyal workers who served under him on the farm in Clongowes remember him with admiration and affection : “He did not mind what a cow ate, but he hated to see good fodder between her feet”. And he knew good work when he saw it, and his praise was therefore the more appreciated, and he had high standards too : “Whatever he done, he done well!” An agricultural expert might perhaps criticise his policy and practice as being “undercapitalised” and say that production could have been increased: but what was done was indeed well done, and no beast went hungry. Clongowes was a land of sleek cattle and strong fences, and rich grass.
As a teacher he often obtained high places for his best boys in the public examinations, but he was most successful by the soundest criterion of all - his boys became fascinated with the study of French and every year some left his classes with an interest in the language and literature that was to be a source of genuine pleasure to them all their lives. It might be said that he did not take a whole class along with him, that a number of boys dropped out, and that his best boys did well because they worked for themselves. That is true; but the fact that he could lead them to this is a measure of his gifts as a master, gifts that will be always envied by lesser teachers.
Some people thought his interest in French literature, especially classical literature, strange in a man whose work and preoccupations were fundamentally agricultural, But it was a natural direct interest, utterly remote from sophistication and artificiality and jargon. The great authors wrote to be enjoyed, not to afford matter for pedantic lucubrations and university theses. He enjoyed them, and therefore his boys did also. And they enjoyed him, standing before a class, his arm gesturing vaguely like some weed moving gently in a placid stream while he talked of Le Cid or trumpeted nasally his delight in Monsieur Jourdain or Harpagon, Turning so naturally from the cares of ploughing or hay-making to Racine and Molière, he was to them the personification of l’honnete homme - in the seventeenth century sense.
His interest in his boys lasted long after they had left school, but it was an interest generally conditioned by their proficiency at French; that was a touch stone. Once, when he had left Clongowes, he was asked by a former Crescent teacher for news of a boy at the Crescent who was in one of his classes. “Mark my words”, he answered, “that boy will give trouble, he will bring sorrow to his parents! He never learns his irregular verbs!” If a boy did well on the Rugby field, it was often because he was “intelligent”, because he liked Molière; if a proficient student failed to get into the Sodality, there was something seriously wrong with the organisation of the Sodality.
A few days before he died he sent for a former pupil, a very prominent doctor from another hospital. “I am going very soon”, he said, “I have just sent for you to say good-bye”. And he shook hands. It was a symbolic hand-clasp and those who owe him so much would have longed to share it, to bid him a very grateful farewell. They will not forget him in their prayers.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father James Finucane SJ 1878-1957
Fr James Finucane was born in County Limerick and received his early education at the Crescent. From there he entered the Society in 1895.

For the benefit of his health, he was sent to Beirut as a scholastic, and it was here he acquired that love and mastery of the French language, for which he was renowned afterwards. He also had a great interest in the land, and for most of his life as a Jesuit, he was in charge of our farms, mainly at Mungret and Clongowes.

His association with Clongowes covered many years, and he will long be remembered by generations of old boys, especially for his powers as a French teacher.

After retiring from teaching he spent some time in Leeson Street and Rathfarnham, where he died on January 25th, 1957.

FitzGerald, John M, 1919-2012, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/774
  • Person
  • 29 September 1919-13 January 2012

Born: 29 September 1919, Dublin / Kilkenny City
Entered: 07 September 1937, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1950, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1953, Southwell House, London, England
Died: 13 January 2012, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin - Zambia-Malawi Province (ZAM)

Part of the St Ignatius community , Lower Leeson Street, Dublin at the time of death.

Transcribed : HIB to ZAM 03/12/1969

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1953 at London (ANG) studying

◆ Companions in Mission1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Note from Patrick (Sher) Sherry Entry
“We imagine his going left many hearts empty and evoked memories of all kinds of services and kindnesses, not least his unfailing patience and cheerfulness”. With these words Fr John Fitzgerald, writing from the Seychelles, summed up well the immediate aftermath of Br Sherry's death on the night of Saturday 5 November 1983.

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/60-years-after-the-milltown-fire/

60 years after the Milltown Fire
At 5.40 a.m. on Friday, 11 February, 1949, a fire was discovered in a pantry of the Milltown Park building where the community lived. The fire brigade was summoned, and shouts went up to arouse those sleeping nearby. The fire was of the “flash-over” type: propagated by the secret spread of smoulder inside floors, stairs, partitions and lofts until a critical temperature is reached and the smoulder bursts into flames simultaneously at different points. At ten to six, with a muffled explosion, a great wave of fire and smoke rose up to the roof and flowed into the corridors of the house. The roof was in flames, the lights went out and within minutes the whole place was engulfed in thick smoke and fumes. Within two hours Fr Jimmy Johnston was burned to death, Michael Reidy was injured, and the Milltown building was a ruin. Below, Fr John Fitzgerald recalls that winter morning :

I rose early and left my room with a jug to get hot water. There was some commotion below, with the sound of jugs filling. I cried: “I’ll go down to help” – but a shout came up: “Get out!” All I recall is hurrying back, putting on shoes and some clothes, and calling Des Coyle, my neighbour. “There seems to be a fire. We’re ordered to get out.”
By now there was some heat and smoke. I made for the fire escape across the corridor. An iron ladder was the lifeline for about 30 Jesuits on the two upper stories. Barring an emergency, none of us would have tackled that ladder, as it was narrow and vertical and passed some distance from the window sills. There was no hesitation then.
We gathered on the grass between the refectory and the library. Mick Reidy was on the projection of a bay window. We urged him to jump. Michael was no athlete. He dropped like a stone, fell on the grassy slope and back into the area, fracturing his spine. That was the only injury, but sadly there was a fatality. Jimmy Johnston had the last room on the top floor. He was to have said the late Mass at the convent, so while his neighbours hurried to safety Jimmy slept and the flames raced up. He left his room too late and was overpowered on the corridor.
All those on the first floor would have probably survived, provided they waited behind closed doors. Those on the top floor were surely saved by the fire escape. Fr Packy Gannon was at the end of the first floor and when he turned his doorknob his hand was burned. He was making his peace with God when the fireman came. Dick Brennan and Piaras O’Higgins were rescued from the roof of the roadside bay window. Piaras’ mother remarked: “Piaras would usually fall over a pin!”
We gathered near the Minister’s House (the reception area in today’s Milltown). It was an awesome sight to watch the fire fighters, and the fire engulfing the upper rooms, and showers of sparks scattering upwards as the roof fell in. We saw a fireman shepherding down Fr Edmund Power from the topmost room of the Minister’s House. Back inside Fr Tommy Byrne told us that Jimmy Johnston was missing. Soon after, a fireman brought down his body.
Some final reflections: Those on the top floor lost everything. Jim Corboy and my brother Eddy had a souvenirs the corpus of a vow crucifix half melted by the heat. If I had closed my door I would have lost nothing to fire. The smell was all pervading, and unlike anything experienced before or since.
A sad note to end. Jimmy Johnston was a kindly and thoughtful soul, scholarly and sensitive. In 1945 he handed over senior history classes to me in Clongowes. Caring and perceptive as ever, he tried to alert me to the pitfalls ahead, as he foresaw the fate of one ill-equipped to enliven later medieval European history. At Milltown we gardened together and shared an interest in nature.
Jimmy’s death came as an immense shock to his family. I don’t think his elderly mother could take in the tragedy. Perhaps the circumstances were kept from her. But Jimmy’s younger brother was deeply saddened, puzzled and disappointed. Why had Jimmy alone died? How was it no-one had thought of him? It was hard to reassure, and besides Fr Tyndall in his imperious manner waved Eddie and me away as we approached the family at the coffin. The whole episode of 11 February was mysterious and tragic, but also miraculous for most, and befitting the Lourdes feast.

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/fr-sullivan-the-last-witness/

Fr Sullivan: the last witness
Fr John Fitzgerald SJ, the last surviving Jesuit to have been taught in Clongowes by Fr John Sullivan, shared some precious memories at the commemorative Mass :

The bones of Fr John Sullivan are your precious possession. They draw his clients from near and far. If John is beatified, St Francis Xavier’s will be a place of pilgrimage like St Thomas a’Becket is at Canterbury, Blessed Pope John XXIII at St Peter’s, Bl. Mother Teresa at Calcutta, and as Cardinal Newman will be at the Oratory in Birmingham. The people in a quiet corner of County Kildare still keep such fond memories of John. They were greatly saddened when his bones were taken away from them for Gardiner Street in 1961. It is a sad separation they will always feel. In fact his grave has been visited ever since.
The relocation of Father’s bones is as good for his cause as it is for you who give them this new home. You have always by your devotion shown how grateful you are to have him. You bring him day by day the stories of your needs – they are always pressing and often sad. John listens – he was always a ready and eager listener to others’ worries.
Coming to St Francis Xavier’s was in a sense a homecoming. John had been baptised in Temple Street (St George’s), and Dublin was his home until he joined the Jesuits. During the years in Clongowes, the City’s hospitals, the Mater included, were within range of his trusty old bicycle.
Sometimes people have asked me what was he really like. Some have a nagging impression that he must have been an ascendancy type, as his father was a baronet and he had passed through Portora Royal School to Trinity College. My own memory of him – clear and vivid – is of a humble, entirely self-effacing person, riveted on the one thing necessary, the commandment of love. He was completely focussed on the needs of others, particularly of the poor and suffering. For him the face of the Lord was there. Gardiner Street would have been an ideal assignment with so much sickness, suffering and poverty all around in the hungry years between the wars.
Clongowes in its rural isolation does not seem an ideal place for one so drawn to the poor and suffering. I knew John in the last three years of his life – my memories are boy’s memories – a child’s impressions – but still so vivid. His appearance so well captured in Sean Keating’s drawing – the sunken cheeks, the fine crop of brown hair, the bowed head, the penetrating eyes – a true man of God. I remember his wrinkled leathery hands. Meeting you on a stone corridor on a bleak cold winter’s evening he would clap those hands and say “Cheer up, cheer up, cheer up”. He well knew the mood of small boys – short of funds, nursing chilblains and facing into two hours’ study. I have a memory of Johnny O shuffling quickly from the sacristy, head bowed, halting at the altar rails – a welcome interruption to the evening rosary. Always he would describe a visit he had made to some sick or dying person. He was no gifted story-teller, no gifted preacher. There were no embellishments; sincerity shone through, telling of his complete devotion to the sick and needy.
John was occupied with the People’s Church and the boys’ spiritual needs with very little teaching. He took the smallest ones for Religion classes. Often we delighted to annoy him by rowdiness and irreverence. This drew the condemnation we intended: “Audacious fellow – pugnacious fellow!” Deep down we revered him, but we played on him.
If some day you visit the Boys’ Chapel, you see at the back on your left Fr John’s Confessional. The “toughs” – the ones never selected as prefects and who won no prizes – were most often there. The smaller boys would crowd into his very bare room after supper. We would come away with rosaries and Agnus Deis which John got from convents he knew. The People’s Church is the easiest place for a visitor to find. There is where John spent long hours and helped so many in times of trial. There he prayed long after the boys were tucked in bed.
Father John was our Spiritual Father. His life and interests revolved round the boys’ spiritual needs. He took no part and had no interest in our games – never appeared at matches, debates, concerts or plays. Free time meant time for prayer or the sick. No use asking Johnny O to pray for victory at Croke Park today, but he will listen to your sorrows, he will pray for your sick and departed ones.
The day of Fr John’s funeral in 1933 comes back clearly. I was in the youngest group and so was up front in the Chapel, and near the coffin. I tried without success to cut off a splinter – as a keepsake, a relic. We had been privileged to know Fr John for three years. Not everyone is so blessed – perhaps only a few have been close to saintliness in one who so well mirrored the Lord Jesus, the Suffering Servant. It is a joy to be here in St Francis Xavier’s and to share your treasure – the Venerable John Sullivan.

◆ Irish Jesuit Missions : https://www.jesuitmissions.ie/news/198-interview-with-late-fr-john-fitzgerald-sj

Interview with late Fr. John Fitzgerald SJ
Fr. John Fitzgerald, SJ died on 13th January 2012 in Cherryfield Nursing Home, Ranelagh after a long illness which he bore graciously to the end. He was buried in Glasnevin cemetery following the funeral mass in Milltown Park Chapel on Monday 16th January. Below is an interview with Fr. Fitzgerald before his death in which he recounts his experience of Zambia as a Jesuit Missionary.

‘Zambia was a completely new world,’ began Fr. John Fitzgerald, as he recalled his years spent in Africa. It is certainly easy to imagine that the Northern Rhodesian bush, as it then was, would have been a world away from Fr. Fitzgerald’s native Killiney!
Fr. Fitzgerald was born in 1919, and was educated at Clongowes Wood College before joining the Jesuits in 1937. He was ordained with his brother Teddy in 1950. He spent 48 years of his life abroad, living and working in Zambia, Australia, Papua New Guinea, and Seychelles, before returning to Ireland in 2001. Although it was only one of many posts, it was Africa on which his mind used to dwell.
Fr. Fitzgerald was sent to the Jesuit mission station in Chikuni, Zambia in 1953, where he worked at St. Canisius College, the Jesuit-run secondary school, and Charles Lwanga Teachers’ College, a centre for trainee teachers. Although he did not view himself as a natural teacher, witnessing the benefits of education proved to be his greatest consolation in mission. Seeing students on the path to better career prospects and a higher salary was gratifying because of the appreciation displayed by the students. In his own words, ‘you didn’t give them very much, but they’d gobble it up. They were good, eager students- even though I wasn’t a good teacher!’
Listening to Fr. Fitzgerald, one couldn’t help but conjure up exoticised images of a world completely foreign to our own. This was particularly true of his descriptions of the physical landscape, the seasons, and the flora and fauna. Life was governed by the changing seasons rather than the ticking clock, and everything depended on the coming of the rains. Although the landscape would remain dusty and barren during the dry season, ‘in the rainy season, everything changed. You quickly had a carpeting of all kinds of wild flowers, all totally different in appearance... I was teaching in a rural area, and so much depended on the rain.’ With the rain, however, came danger: thunderstorms were frequent, and injury by lightning was not unheard of. Other occupational hazards included venomous snakes and poisonous spiders, with the puff adder being the most dreaded. If one stood on a puff adder, it could be fatal: because of the distance to the hospital, it was difficult to receive the necessary antidote. For this reason, snakes were always quickly ‘dispatched’, regardless of their species! Climate and wildlife were not the only differences which Fr. Fitzgerald encountered. He soon came to realise that Zambian Catholicism was expressed in ways which would be unfamiliar to Irish Catholics.
‘They threw themselves into Christianity wholeheartedly. In comparison to what we are used to here, they are much more demonstrative in their piety: they sing, they dance, they participate. Kneeling in silence, as we do, might be completely foreign to Tongan Christians.’ New and innovative ways of expressing Christian worship were devised to accommodate Zambian culture. One such method involved using local hunting songs as templates from which to create Christian hymns: this allowed people to experience a message which was unfamiliar in a format which they recognised. These hymns are still sung in Zambia today.
Missionaries in Africa have always worked as agents of development, and Fr. Fitzgerald believed that development is a key part of the missionary project: ‘Christianity cannot make any headway unless people also develop economically. Without development, I don’t think Christianity could be easily accommodated.’ He stated that Dr. Corboy, who was appointed Bishop of Monze, Zambia, in 1962, was interested in developing Africa ‘along African lines’, so as to ‘promote the African.’ There was a great emphasis on promoting development in such a way that it fit with African culture.
However, some cultural practices were found to be difficult to integrate with Catholicism. Fr. Fitzgerald argued that the ‘superstitions’ of the Tonga had an occasional tendency to ‘spill over into Christian living’. This was particularly apparent with regards to local understandings of health and sickness. Because the Tonga believed that all misfortune could be attributed to evil spirits, there was a constant struggle over their reactions to hospitals and Western medicine. Certain practices which were antithetical to Christian living also proved difficult to stamp out. For example, some converts would revert to polygamy because it was seen as an economic practice which was necessary for subsistence farming.
As an Irishman, Fr. Fitzgerald admitted that he originally found the cultural divide between Killiney and Chikuni quite difficult to bridge. However, the influence and efforts of other Jesuits, some of whom produced cultural studies, English-Tongan dictionaries, and works of anthropology, made the transition more manageable for those who came later. ‘In our days it was a good deal different, but later works focused more on enculturation.’
Although the Chikuni mission is now run by Zambian locals, there is still a part for Irish Catholics to play in promoting the missionary spirit. Fr. Fitzgerald believed that volunteering is a great help: ‘the fact that people are willing to go out and work must make a big impression [on their hosts].’ Such work benefits not only the recipients, but also the volunteers, by ‘breaking down barriers’ and facilitating the opening of a ‘global conversation.’
Fr. Fitzgerald always remained optimistic about the future of the Jesuits in Africa. Vocations have been successfully promoted, and studies for the religious life, from first interest up to ordination, are completed in Africa. Returning missionaries are happy to pass the torch to their African brothers; this was, of course, always the end goal! ‘It’s a healthy looking, locally-grounded church. The Jesuits will continue to do excellent work there, just as they do here in Ireland and in our other foreign Provinces.
All indications are that it will become stronger.’

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 147 : Spring 2012

Obituary

Fr John Michael Fitzgerald (1919-2012) : Zambia Malawi Province

29 September 1919: Born in Dublin.
Early education in St. Gerard's, Bray, Clongowes and Trinity College, Dublin
7 September 1937: Entered the Society at Emo
8 September 1939: First Vows at Emo
1939 - 1942: Rathfarnham - Studied Arts at UCD
1942 - 1945: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1945 - 1947: Clongowes - Teacher
1947 - 1951: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
31 July 1950: Ordained at Milltown Park, Dublin
1951 - 1952: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1952 - 1953: London Institute of Education - Study
2 February 1953: Final Vows
1953 - 1959: Chikuni and Monze – Teacher
1959 - 1960: Charles Lwanga Training College - Teacher
1960 - 1961: SFX Gardiner Street - Church Work and help in Mission Office
1961 - 1970: Sacred Heart Church, Monze -
1962 - 1964: Secretary to Bishop
1964 - 1970: Vice-Superior; Treasurer; teaching in Monze Secondary
1970: Transcribed to Zambia
1972 - 1973: Charles Lwanga – Vice Superior and teaching
1973 - 1976: Australia, Papua New Guinea, Seychelles - Teaching and Pastoral work
1976 - 1978: Chikuni - Teaching
1978 - 1981: Seychelles - Pastoral work
1981 - 1982: Chivuna - Assistant Parish Priest
1982 - 1990: Seychelles – Parish Priest
1992 - 1993: Sacred Heart Church, Limerick - Assisted in Church, Promoter of Missions
1992 - 2001: Seychelles - Pastoral Work
2001 - 2002: Recovering health; Milltown Park - awaiting an assignment
2002 - 2006: Crescent Church, Limerick - Assisted in Church, Promoter of Missions
2006 - 2011; Leeson Street - Chaplain in Royal Victoria Eye and Ear Hospital
2011: Resident in Cherryfield Lodge, praying for the Church and the Society
13th January 2012: Died at Cherryfield

Fr John FitzGerald was admitted to Cherryfield Lodge on 28th January 2011. He maintained his interest in books and continued to proof-read documents when possible. He was happy in Cherryfield as his condition slowly deteriorated during the year but he remained mentally alert. He died peacefully in the early morning of Friday 13th January 2012. May he rest in the Peace of Christ

Obituary : Michael J Kelly
Father John Fitzgerald was born in September 1919, entered the Society in September 1937, was ordained in July 1950, took Final Vows in February 1953, and died in January 2012. On completion of his tertianship and further studies he spent fifty-eight years in active ministry before assuming the ministry of praying for the Church and the Society in Cherryfield Lodge in January 2011. He spent twenty four of these years as a teacher or trainer of teachers in Zambia and thirty-four as a parish priest, pastoral worker and hospital chaplain in the Seychelles, Australia, Papua New Guinea and Ireland.

John was a Jesuit through and through. As a schoolboy in Clongowes he was enormously influenced by the asceticism, Jesuit commitment and joyful holiness of the saintly Father John Sullivan and strove to guide his own life by similar ideals. Throughout his Jesuit training he absorbed the spirit of St. Ignatius to such an extent that he sought always to live according to two of Ignatius' guiding principles: “that in everything God might be glorified” and “go where you see a need”.

And so it was that John threw himself wholeheartedly into whatever teaching or pastoral assignment to which he was missioned, while at the same time showing an almost restless zeal to do more and to respond to the needs and challenges of those in other parts. Like his predecessor Francis Xavier, he lived, as one of his companions in later years put it, “with both feet in mid-air”, always available, always ready to undertake difficult enterprises courageously and cheerfully. In these and so many other ways he was the sort of Jesuit dear to the heart of St. Ignatius.

But Ignatius would not have been alone in this love. In all his diverse assignments John radiated love, gentleness, and kindness and brought out the same qualities in all those with whom he interacted. As the sanctity and mellowness of Father John Sullivan attracted him so strongly from the time of his boyhood, so his own holiness and graciousness attracted others, not just to himself but also to God. In the spirit of one of the hymns for the office of Readings, the Holy Spirit inflamed with love each of his senses so that other souls might kindle thence. For there can be no mistake about it: Father John Fitzgerald was a holy, saintly and very humble man, in the very best sense of each of these words. He sought at all times God's glory, not his own; the well-being and happiness of others in preference to his own. He always wanted that God and others should increase while he himself would decrease, but he strove that this should come about in a way that would give free rein to the Spirit in its work of transforming people.

Long before his death, people spoke of the way they were attracted to John. They spoke of the example of his life, of his generous service, of his uprightness and integrity, of his warm approving manner, of his words of encouragement and understanding, of his generous smiling openness, of his wisdom and gentle humour. It is clear that they found in John a man who in an unselfconscious way shared with all-comers the fruits of the Spirit: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, forbearance, gentleness, faith, courtesy, temperateness, purity”. This then was the man who spent twenty-four years as an apostolic worker in Zambia, twenty in the Seychelles, three in Australia and Papua New Guinea and eleven in Ireland, living and showing in his person the Good News of God's passionate love for every man, woman and child.

On completing his tertianship in 1952, John spent one year at the Institute of Education, University of London, preparing himself for what was to be his initial assignment as a teacher trainer in Zambia (Northern Rhodesia at the time). There he was the right-hand man of Father Bob Thompson (and later of Father John Counihan) in running the training programme, at first within the physical and organisational structures of Canisius College and subsequently at Charles Lwanga Teachers' College when the teacher training was hived off to independent status at this newly established college. During these early years he was closely associated in his work as a trainer of teachers with the “early feminist”, Sister Joseph Helen RSC, who though eleven years John's senior, predeceased him by just four days in her hundred and fourth year.

In one notable respect Charles Lwanga College conferred on John a kind of immortality (his own words), since it was he who advocated that it be called “Charles Lwanga” and not just “Lwanga”. But John's immortality was written more strongly in the many teachers he helped to train, men and women who learned from him not only how to be good teachers but also how to be good people.
The strength of John as a teacher trainer was brought out in a protest from the Zambia Ministry of Education UK-born and Oxford educated inspector for teacher training. When John was redeployed from Charles Lwanga to teach at the government secondary school in Monze, the inspector tartly observed: “You Jesuits are supposed to be great educators. But here you are, taking the best teacher trainer in all Zambia away from the work in which he excels and relegating him to teach in a secondary school”. Characteristically, John's response on being told of this was to deprecate himself and to allege that the inspector had a misguidedly high opinion of him.

John served with great distinction in Monze for several years, and subsequently for short spells in Australia and Papua New Guinea and back again in Zambia at Canisius College. These latter interludes heightened his desire to be engaged in more directly pastoral work, the realisation of which a remarkable intervention of the Spirit set dramatically in train. In 1978, he was requested to accompany an elderly and infirm Jesuit whose condition required that he return to Sri Lanka where he had previously worked. The travel entailed a stopover in the Seychelles where John and his companion were hosted by the local Bishop, the first Seychellois to be appointed to this office. During their brief stay the Bishop painted such a graphic picture of the pastoral needs of his people that on his return to Zambia John felt impelled to seek permission to exercise his apostolic ministry in the Seychelles. The permission was reluctantly given, though at first for only a few years. So began John's apostolic life in the Seychelles where, as the Bishop Emeritus of the islands stated at the time of John's death, “over many years he gave great pastoral and spiritual service to the people of the Seychelle Islands”. There were a few short returns to Zambia, and one on health grounds to Ireland, but for the next twenty-three years John's essential ministry was to the people of the Seychelles whom he heard calling out to him for the Mass, the Sacraments, the Word of God, the compassion of Christ and the presence of the Spirit. Following the footsteps of the Lord whom he loved so wholeheartedly, he saw the people of the Seychelles as sheep without a shepherd, he was filled with pity for them and set out to teach them at length. His ministry extended to every person within the large areas where he served - La Digue, Mont Fleuri (Bon Pasteur parish), Baie Ste Anne and Victoria (the capital city). During these years he also gave greatly appreciated service to the formation of seminarians and to the guidance of members of religious congregations. Well known for his availability and discretion he found himself as the confessor of choice of many religious, including Blessed Teresa of Calcutta at the time she was establishing her congregation in the Seychelles.

Throughout his life, John was an ascetic who lived as poorly as his situation would allow. He had a minimum of personal possessions and could easily pack his few belongings into a single case when moving from one place to another. Although he lived in the idyllic surroundings of the Seychelles, with its enticing sea and beaches, there was never any danger of his becoming a “beach potato”. Indeed, he was almost a decade in the Seychelles before he even walked a beach - and on that occasion he had to get the loan of swim wear before going into the sea.

But John's asceticism took its toll on his health. While in Zambia and Australia, community routines ensured that he was regularly presented with sustaining meals. But living by himself, as he did in the Seychelles, the needs of the poor and the upkeep of the church buildings were a greater priority for him than his body's need for adequate nutritious food. His poor diet gradually led to his becoming physically very run down, necessitating a visit on health grounds to Ireland and eventually to his final departure from the Seychelles and definitive return to Ireland in 2001.

John spent the last decade of his active apostolic life, first in the Crescent Sacred Heart Church in Limerick and, after this was closed, in Leeson Street, Dublin, from where he served as chaplain to the nearby Eye and Ear Hospital. During these years he bore a great deal of physical discomfort, but quietly and without fuss. He was low-key in his presence but always a most gracious helper to colleagues and host to visitors in the Limerick and Leeson Street communities, to those he served from the Sacred Heart Church, and to the patients and staff in the Eye and Ear Hospital. Indeed he was graciousness itself and was noted for his gentle good humour and great smile. These became increasingly more characteristic of him, even as advancing years took their toll. He had the rare gift of being able to listen to others and hear what they were really saying, without letting his own interests, declining health or physical discomfort come between them and him.

Early in 2011, his adverse health condition brought John to his final earthly home, Cherryfield Lodge. Here his gracious and uncomplaining manner, with his gentle and humble disposition, quickly endeared him to the other residents and staff and elicited from them extraordinary care and attention. There are many memories of John's patience and prayerfulness during his last months on earth - his dedication to the Rosary, his wise advice, his graciousness to the almost unending stream of visitors who called to see him, his delight when visited by his brother Julian and members of his family, his generous comments about others, his insightful but ever-gentle humour, his gratitude for any little thing done on his behalf, his reluctance to talk about the pains, bad nights and poor appetite of a man experiencing great physical discomfort, his ability to keep himself abreast of major sporting events, his almost childlike pleasure in the bright skies he could see outside and the flowers that were brought to him in his room.

One memory that endures is very simple. It is of John lifting his pain-filled body to reach towards a nearby vase of roses, allowing the roses to be brought before his face, and his great smile of satisfaction and happiness as he breathed their fragrance and sank back on to his pillow. You could almost hear him say with Simeon of old, “At last, all-powerful Master, you give leave to your servant to go in peace, according to your promise”. Clearly, we had a saint among us and scarcely knew.

Fogarty, Philip, 1938-2019, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/857
  • Person
  • 04 September 1938-26 November 2019

Born: 04 September 1938, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1957, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 20 June 1971, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1978, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 26 November 2019, Sewickley PA, USA

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street community at the time of death

Raised at Taylor’s Hill, Galway
Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1962 at Chantilly France (FRA) studying
by 1972 at San Francisco CA, USA (CAL) studying
by 1973 at University of London (ANG) studying
by 1974 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship
by 1992 at Wernersville PA, USA (MAR) sabbatical
by 2009 at Pittsburgh PA, USA (MAR) working

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/phil-fogarty-rip/

Living the Jesuit vision: Phil Fogarty RIP

The funeral Mass of Philip Fogarty SJ took place in Sewickley, Pittsburgh on Tuesday 3 December 2019. The celebrant was Michael Shiel SJ who had flown over with fellow Jesuit and socius Declan Murray SJ. Cathal Doherty SJ flew from San Francisco to join all those who had gathered to give thanks for Philip’s life of service. Because he suffered from severe heart trouble over the past 20 years Philip spent a good bit of time in the United States but he continued to work both in Ireland and the states, “a testament to his courage” as one Jesuit colleague put it. He was well known as a retreat giver and writer and for the past 10 years in Sewickley, near Pittsburgh in the USA. He spent the latter part of his life engaged in the spirituality apostolate, both at home and with the CSJ Sisters in the USA. Philip had lived a full life in the Irish Province. Much of the early part of his ministry was in education, he taught in Coláiste Iognáid and spent 11 years as headmaster of Clongowes Wood College. Writing in the Clongownian (1987) about his time there the late Michael O’Dowd (former deputy headmaster) said Philip ‘eventually built Clongowes in his own image and likeness’. On hearing of his death, the current deputy headmaster of Clongowes, Martin Wallace, penned a moving tribute for the school’s website, echoing Michael O’Dowd’s sentiments. “As Headmaster, Philip was the leader of a remarkable triumvirate that included Michael O’Dowd as Deputy Headmaster and Fr. Michael Sheil SJ as higher line prefect. Soft-spoken and pipe smoking, Philip ran the school with kindness and compassion, relying on the goodwill of all, but backed up by his two enforcers, to ensure that a culture of mutual respect reigned in every domain of the college. Fairness, consistency and respect for all were the pillars of his authority and it would be no exaggeration to say that he transformed the culture of Clongowes through his vision of what a Jesuit school should be, his communication of that vision at every opportunity, and through the way he lived that vision in his interactions with every person in the community.” Philip frequently wrote for The Sacred Heart Messenger and published with Columba Press and Messenger Publications. For the last twenty years, his health was increasingly compromised. But as his friend and current editor of the Messenger, Donal Neary, notes, “He had a wonderful approach to his ailments and he tried to live as positively and as fully as he could, enjoying the fact that he was constantly defying all the medical prognoses.” His most recent visit home was in April 2019, where he enjoyed a great visit with his sisters, family and the community at Leeson St. Over the past two weeks, he had been detained in the ICU of the UPMC hospital with significant medical issues, but was released home from there only last Saturday. He wrote saying he was very happy to be at home and expected to recover. However, he died peacefully in his sleep in the early hours of Tuesday morning, November 26th in the care of the CSJ Sisters at Sewickley, and he will be buried with them there in their community plot. He was 81 years old. “We are grateful for his life” says Donal, adding “and his fellow Jesuits and family give thanks for having known him and his friendship. May he rest in peace.”

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/fitting-tribute-for-phil/

Fitting tribute for Phil
Clongowes Wood College SJ celebrated the life of Philip Fogarty SJ with a special memorial Mass in the school sports hall, on Sunday 19 January 2020. Phil died last year in America on Tuesday 26 November. Jesuits, teachers, former staff, family, friends, pupils and past pupils all gathered to pay tribute to Philip who was headmaster in the school from 1976 to 1987.
Michael Sheil SJ said the Mass and gave the homily, which included a touching account of the many years he shared with Phil. And he made special mention of Phil’s ground-breaking re-imagining of Clongowes and its ethos as a Jesuit boarding school.”
Mr Cyril Murphy, Director of Liturgy in Clongowes conducted the Schola choir comprised of current students. They sang the Requiem aeternam introit and the Pie Jesu from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Requiem. “ It felt like a homecoming requiem Mass for our former headmaster,” said Cyril, adding that “It was a very moving liturgy. To see the numerous past pupils flooding through the doors before the liturgy ever began was testament enough to ‘Phili’, as he was affectionately known.”
Phil’s sister Oonagh was present along with members of the Mc Keagney family who laid a framed portrait of Phil before the altar. The picture was later presented to Oonagh. Sr. Catherine Higgins, a great friend of Phil’s, travelled from the United States especially for the occasion. ”The whole event was a testimony to the affection and esteem in which Phil was held,” Cyril reflected, adding that “The pods of conversation and the reluctance of people to leave the sports hall after the Mass was over was striking in its manifestation of the legacy of goodwill which Phil left behind.”
One of those legacies was Phil’s promotion of an ecumenical friendship between Clongowes and Portora Royal School, Enniskillen which began 40 years ago. There is still a strong bond between the school and Ms Janet Goodall and family, long-time friends of Clongowes and Portora, attended the Mass. Present also were neighbours and friends from the King’s Hospital including Mark Ronan, the headmaster of King’s Hospital, his wife Fiona, Mr John Aiken, Deputy Head, Ms Jenny Baron and number of pupils.
Guests did eventually leave the sports hall moving to the refectory for a hearty Sunday lunch. Phil would have approved.

Early Education at Coláiste Iognáid SJ, Galway, Clongowes Wood College, SJ

1959-1962 Rathfarnham - Studying Arts at UCD
1962-1965 Chantilly, France - Studying Philosophy at Séminaire Missionaire
1965-1968 Clongowes Wood College SJ - Regency : Teacher; Studying CWC Cert in Education
1968-1972 Milltown Park - Studying Theology
1972-1973 San Francisco, CA, USA - Studying Educational TV at St Ignatius College Prep
1973 Mount St, London, UK - Studying Educational TV at London University
1973-1974 St Asaph, Wales, UK - Tertianship at St Bueno’s
1974-1975 Belvedere College SJ - Audio Visual Organiser for SJ Schools
1975-1976 Coláiste Iognáid SJ, Galway - Teacher; Promoting TV Ed in SJ Schools
1976-1987 Clongowes Wood College SJ - Headmaster; Editor “Clongownian”; Teacher
1987-1988 Sabbatical in South Africa (till Jan 1988)
1988-1991 Coláiste Iognáid SJ, Galway - Headmaster; Director Pastoral Care; Province Consultor (from Jan 88)
1991-1992 Wernersville, PA, USA - Sabbatical at Jesuit Centre of Spirituality
1992-1995 Sandford Lodge - Superior; Chair Young Adults Board; Provincial Team; Provincial Representative at NCIR; Chaplain to Jesuit Alumni/ae; Chair JVC Board
1994 Bursar
1995-1996 Leinster Road - Superior; Bursar; NCPI; Young Adults Delegate
1996-1999 Loyola House - Superior; Provincial Socius; Provincial’s Admonitor; Province Consultor; Provincial Team; Delegate Young Adults; Past Pupils Apostolate
1999-2019 Leeson St - Writer; Assists CLC; Assists LRA; Assists Cherryfield
2003 Hospice Chaplain (USA)
2009 Sewickley, PA, USA - Writer;19th Annotation Retreats in Parishes; Spiritual Direction; Assists the Jesuit Collaborative in Pittsburgh

Gallagher, Michael Paul, 1939-2015, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/841
  • Person
  • 25 August 1939-06 November 2015

Born: 25 August 1939, Collooney, County Sligo
Entered: 08 October 1961, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 23 June 1972, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows; 02 February 1978, University Hall SJ, Dublin
Died: 06 November 2015, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Loyola, Milltown Park, Dublin community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1964 at Campion Hall, Oxford (ANG) studying
by 1966 at Heythrop, Oxford (ANG) studying
by 1969 at Johns Hopkins, Baltimore MD, USA - studying
by 1986 at Toronto, Canada (CAN S) Sabbatical
by 1991 at Bellarmino, Rome, Italy (DIR) Sec to Congregation for Unbelief
by 2001 at Gesù, Rome, Italy (DIR) teaching at Gregorian

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/death-of-fr-michael-paul-gallagher-sj/

Death of Michael Paul Gallagher SJ
Fr Michael Paul Gallagher SJ died last night (Friday 6 November) in St Vincent’s Private Hospital, just after the anointing of the sick and prayers with three Jesuit friends. He had been ill for some months. He was a native of Colooney, Co.Sligo. He received his secondary education at Clongowes Wood College. After joining the Jesuits he did special studies in Renaissance literature in Oxford, Michael Paul was a renowned lecturer and author of books on faith and contemporary culture. He lectured in English in UCD for over ten years in the 1970s and 80s before going to Rome, where he lectured in theology in the Gregorian University. He was also a valued contributor, for many years, to the well-known Jesuit publication The Sacred Heart Messenger. His latest article on ‘The Prospect of Dying’ is in the current issue. Shortly before his death he recorded a series of short videos for the Jesuit Guide to Making Good Decisions. He also wrote the text for an online Advent Retreat, shortly to be published on the Jesuit prayer website Sacred Space and on the Pray-As-You-Go podcast prayer website of the Jesuits in Britain. His book Into Extra Time, an account of his path of faith through illness, will soon be published by Darton, Longman and Todd/Messenger Publications. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/the-long-learning-of-love-m-p-gallagher-rip/

‘The long learning of love’
Jesuits, family and friends have been paying tribute to Michael Paul Gallagher SJ, who passed away on Friday 6 November. His friend and fellow Jesuit Donal Neary presided at the reception of his remains in Milltown Park Chapel on Monday evening. He spoke of the contribution Michael Paul made to the many people with whom he came in contact including the students he taught in University College Dublin who felt free enough to call in for coffee and a chat with him. So too did their parents who were often concerned that their beloved children were losing their faith. Michael Paul, he said, would reassure them that the love and concern they had for their adult children was the real lasting kind of support their children needed as they struggled with important questions of doubt and faith. He said his first book Help My Unbelief, published in 1983, made a real impact on the cultural landscape as a substantial contribution to the understanding of issues of faith in modern times. On Tuesday at 11am a large number of people filled the pews in Milltown Chapel, where Michael Paul had requested his funeral mass take place. (Listen to the mass here). They were invited by the main celebrant Jim Culliton SJ to “engage in celebrating the life of an extraordinary man, a man of great intellect, heart and warmth”. He said even inevitable death, (for Michael Paul was terminally ill and knew he was dying) was awful, raising many troubling questions. But the answers came, he said, when he thought about the kind of life Michael Paul lived, the reflections he offered in his writings and lectures, the impact he made in the courses and retreats he gave. “He was a fiercely loyal servant of all those whom he loved, fiercely proud of his Sligo roots, and proud of being an Irish Jesuit.”
In the homily Bruce Bradley SJ, spoke of the man he first met in 1962. He said he was someone who was gifted in “intuiting and imagining the horizons of others, inviting them in turn to share his”. He said the renowned author “did not take himself too seriously but he was aware and quietly proud of some of his own gifts and accomplishments”, adding with a smile, “Perhaps with just some of the small harmless vanity you occasionally meet with in an only child”. He said Michael Paul was impressive in how he faced his impending death with “clear-eyed courage and a lack of self-absorption”.

He book-ended his tribute with a moving story about his final meeting with Michael Paul just two weeks previously to the day. Having spent some precious time together and as he was leaving, he accompanied Michael Paul to the community chapel at mass time. Michael Paul dipped his hand in the holy water font and made the sign of the cross on his own forehead. “Then in a spontaneous gesture I will never forget, the made the same sign of the cross on my forehead too.” And he quoted from some of his final writings or ‘fragments’ as he called them, published in The Sacred Heart Messenger, where Michael Paul described his life as “The long learning of love”, adding, “ When I am close to death there may be weakness and distress. But I hope then to have the freedom to surrender into the arms of God so dying can be a prayerful letting go.” His three Jesuit friends (Donal Neary, Jim Culliton and Liam O’Connell) who were with him when he died peacefully at 11 pm on Friday, all attest that this is exactly what they witnessed, a dying that was indeed ‘a prayerful letting go’.

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/messenger-of-wonder-and-wonderful-messenger/

Messenger of wonder and wonderful messenger
Early in his rich and varied teaching career, the gifted Irish Jesuit, Fr. Michael Paul Gallagher, who died last Friday (6th November 2015) at the age of 76, used to give an introductory course to students of English literature in University College Dublin. At a certain point, he liked to write these three intriguing words on the blackboard: “ha”, “aha”, and “ah”. He made his students sit up and think by claiming that these three strange sounds stood not only for the three basic approaches toward literature, but also for the three fundamental stances toward human life as a whole. He asked them not to fall into the trap of arriving too quickly at judgments, to be careful not to rush hastily into uttering a smug and even contemptuous “ha”, before they even took the trouble to experience and understand things properly. He then pronounced the second sound – “aha” – with a rising rhythm, to make audible the moment when we understand something. He told them how college was meant to be full of these “aha” moments, as they learned new things and discovered new insights. But, then, looking solemnly at his audience, Fr. Michael Paul would warn them not to become so excited by their “aha” moments that they ended up stifling the deepest and most central experience of all – the experience of wonder, the “ah” experience. Michael Paul Gallagher brought a liberating “ah” of fresh air to individual Irish people, to the Irish Church, and, later, through his work in the Vatican and at the Pontifical Gregorian University, to countless students and Catholics from around the world. He was a messenger of wonder and a wonderful messenger of God. He had an uncanny gift for helping people to reach the threshold of wonder in their lives, to get in touch with their deepest hungers and desires. He invited them to open new doors into the mystery of themselves, and to discover a God who was much more loving than they had dared imagine.
Born in 1939 in the village of Collooney, County Sligo, he credited it with shaping his feelings and imagination, and was always grateful for the stability and roots this village world gave him. Precisely because it was such a reassuring anchor, it gave him the leeway to broaden his horizons as time went on. At the age of twelve he was sent to the Jesuit boarding school Clongowes. From there he went to UCD, and after finishing his degree in English and French literature, was awarded a grant from the French government to study at the University of Caen Normandy from 1960 to 1961. The year in France was a turning point in his life. Although the Second Vatican Council would only open in 1962, there was already great excitement and new life palpable in French Catholicism. Michael Paul met young French Catholics who were passionate about their faith, who read the Bible, prayed in nearby monasteries, and invited notable French philosophers and theologians to address them. He also met significant numbers of agnostics and atheists for the first time in his life. Over the course of many long conversations that went on late into the night, he found he had a gift for explaining faith in a new and fresh language, not the technical jargon of abstract arguments, but the living poetry of personal discovery.
After returning from Caen, he entered the Jesuits, with a sense that he was being called to help people discover the wonder of faith in a world where unbelief was in the ascendant. When he completed his two- year novitiate, he was sent to Oxford to study Renaissance literature. While there, he began to realize that despite the distance some of his fellow students felt from faith, the language of poetry opened up for them an avenue into wonder and their inner experience. Over the years ahead, he began to form the conviction that doctrine alone was not enough to speak to people; like Jesus, who used parables, Michael Paul found himself drawn to an imaginative presentation of faith, drawing on the resources of literature.
From his Jesuit formation, Michael Paul learned how to find and trust the hidden poetry in himself, and this skill enabled him in his turn to help others to liberate their human depths. He realised that his surface self was driven toward performing and being successful. From childhood onwards, he had wanted to do well and make his parents proud of him, and so excelled in academic studies as well as drama and debating. But as well as this “performer” side to himself, at a deeper level he felt at home with the wonder of being a “child”, he was happy to trust his feelings, to allow himself to be playful, and to reach out to others without pushing himself to perform in order that they would like him. He made a sustained and conscious effort to live out of the deeper level of himself. When he became aware of surface desires and immature responses, he knew he was out of tune with himself. He picked up the warning signs through a certain sense of dissatisfaction and emptiness. He countered this gnawing surface self by re-tuning into the deeper and more serene wavelength inside, where he lived from a satisfying rootedness together with a great openness of vision. Because his experience of prayer and discernment taught him to be aware of the dangers of this false, performing, “impressing everyone” side to himself, he was particularly well equipped to help others go beyond the surface self and find that deeper peace to help them negotiate the challenges of life.
Michael Paul was ordained to the priesthood in 1972. Afterwards he continued to lecture in English at UCD, and also researched the phenomenon of atheism and how churches and pastoral workers were responding to it. As a result of this research he became the first Roman Catholic ever to be awarded a doctorate in theology by Queen’s University, Belfast.
In 1974 he published a controversial article, “Atheism Irish Style”. At a time when the general consensus held that Irish Catholicism was in a thoroughly healthy state, Fr. Michael Paul alarmed many by suggesting that it was actually dying a slow death. He claimed that Irish Catholics (most of all young Irish Catholics) were becoming increasingly disillusioned with many of the externals of church life – religion taught impersonally or in an authoritarian manner in school, dull Sunday rituals, and boring sermons. Although a huge emphasis was placed upon attendance at Mass, the actual practice of it was spiritually impoverished with little prayerfulness, no sense of living worship, and no real attempt to create a human community. The article and subsequent talks and interviews generated huge discussion and debate.
Less than 10 years later, in 1983, he published his first, and most famous book, Help My Unbelief, aimed at readers who were bewildered at why God was becoming so unreal for them. His focus was not on intellectual arguments for or against God, because he did not believe this was where the real story was. He concentrated instead on dispositions and basic attitudes. He was wise enough to know that people do not make decisions about faith upon purely rational grounds. Our decisions for or against faith generally involve a strong sense of how we feel about ourselves and life. He gave the example of a college student who came into his office to discuss an essay, but suddenly announced in an aggressive tone, “I’m an atheist, you know.” When Michael Paul ignored this declaration, and continued to give him feedback on his essay, the student asked, “Isn’t it your job to convert me?” Michael Paul responded, “I wouldn’t dream of converting anyone in that tone of voice”, and went on to say that faith was so precious to him that he would not even consider indulging in a useless argument about it. But if the student were willing to listen, he would be more than happy at some other time to explain what faith meant for him. Sure enough, the student returned a few days later. He spoke about this and that for a while, before suddenly announcing, “I suffer from asthma.” And then he went on to share how asthma had destroyed his childhood because it had cut him off from other people, made him ashamed, and angry at God and at life. This story taught Michael Paul something crucial: behind many aggressive denials of faith (“I’m an atheist”) there can be a much less aggressive reality of hurt and disenchantment (“I suffer from asthma”).
In 1990, Michael Paul was invited to work in the Holy See’s Pontifical Council for Dialogue with Non- Believers. Five years later he began teaching theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, where he later became Dean of Theology as well as Rector of the large “Bellarmino” community of Jesuit graduate students. Despite his teaching and the big burden of administration, he somehow found time to write, give talks, and listen to many young individuals, helping them to enter into a space of freedom they often did not know they had. In terms of his own writing, he began to see himself more and more as a “translator”, translating the insights of major theologians into a language that honest, educated, non-specialised searchers could understand. Michael Paul read through countless books in a way that was faithful to those who hadn’t the time or energy to read such books. He tried to carry out his academic work in tune with Christ’s compassion for all seekers and searchers.
When Michael Paul was hit by cancer for the second time in January 2015, he was faithful to his lifelong practice of applying the lessons he learned from his own struggles for the benefit of others. He reflected upon his illness and wrote down his reflections. His final book, about his own journey through cancer, Into Extra Time, is due to be published soon. In this month’s Sacred Heart Messenger, he has an article called “The Prospect of Dying”. Its final paragraph encapsulates the graced imagination that always enabled Fr. Michael Paul Gallagher to see seeds of hope in what at first looks like a burnt-out desert:
“The outer process of dying may be frightening, but do I really want to stay here forever? If I listen to my heart, I know I am made for more life than I can imagine. When God’s promise overcomes my fears, what St. Paul calls the ‘last enemy’ becomes an unexpected friend.”
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam uasal.
This article was published in The Irish Catholic, 12th November, 2015

https://www.jesuit.ie/books/wisdom-at-the-crossroads/

Wisdom at the Crossroads
Author: Thomas G. Casey SJ Publisher: Messenger Publications

Wisdom at the Crossroads: The Life and Thought of Michael Paul Gallagher SJ follows the journey of this gifted Jesuit priest, theologian, author and educator from the simplicity of an Irish rural childhood to the more complex world he soon encountered. That changing world prompted him to think deeply about the question of faith in our times, the effects of a shifting culture on our perceptions, and the challenge of unbelief and atheism as it manifests itself today. It illuminates Michael Paul’s rare gift – both in personal conversation and in the written word – of helping people to move from a detached consideration of faith to an awareness of what was deepest in their own hearts, for it was from that hidden layer of wonder that he believed the journey of faith could unfold.
The early part of the book covers the first forty years of Michael Paul’s life. This includes a description of his hometown of Collooney in Co. Sligo which the Jesuit was able to recall most vividly upon a return visit with Italian friends many years later. He attended Clongowes Wood College SJ in his early years and studied at UCD and in Caen, France, as a university student. After entering the Jesuit novitiate, Michael Paul studied poetry in Oxford and philosophy in London. Some of his other key experiences during these years included lecturing and further studies; the Charismatic Renewal; work in Kolkata; and the formation of young Jesuits.
Later, Fr Gallagher’s direct dealing with unbelief is explored culminating in the Jesuit’s first and most famous book, Help My Unbelief, aimed at readers who were bewildered at why God was becoming so unreal for them. He continued to write many books including Faith Maps which outlined how three dimensions of faith – the institutional, the critical, and the mystical – correspond to the three ages in life – childhood, youth, and adulthood. He pondered where people were at in terms of the dimensions and ages, encouraging them to ask searching and critical questions about their faith.
Michael Paul loved the culture of the theatre and cinema, but more importantly he appreciated culture as ‘the set of meanings and values that informs a way of life’. In this regard, he spent a year in Latin America where he befriended a seminarian named Eliseo who showed him that faith was not a private matter between God and himself; it was something that was alive in a shared way. Furthermore, although Michael Paul didn’t personally experience Irish Catholicism as repressive, he was aware that for many people of his generation it was associated with a petty vision, confined largely to external rules and narrow moralism. He was in touch with the culture of the people.
Of the seven chapters in this book, it would be worth referring to the sense of wonder in chapter five. Michael Paul loved to communicate the experience of wonder, the ‘ah’ experience to his many students. The author notes that he had a disarming gift for helping people to reach the threshold of wonder in their lives. On one occasion, Fr Gallagher spoke with a former student who struggled to believe in a God who was out of touch with his new passion for science. As the conversation continued, the former student began to think that he wasn’t as far away from faith as he had imagined. He began to wonder about faith in a fresh way, a on to others.

https://www.jesuit.ie/books/into-extra-time-2/

Into Extra Time
Author: Michael Paul Gallagher SJ
Publisher: Messenger Publications
Michael Paul Gallagher’s book, ‘Into Extra Time – Jottings Along The Way’, is an account of his path of faith through illness and facing death. In Michael Paul’s own words from the preface:-
“The opening words of the Introduction spoke of my path towards death as highly probable. Now several months later death is certain, a question of months. The story of treatment, remission and then return of more than one zone of cancer is told in the second section of this book. As time has gone on, I often wondered why I was publishing such a personal narrative. It started as a diary for myself, trying to explore my experience of illness. Then I began to think it could be of help to others. But I also fear it could inflate my own fairly ordinary adventure, and I ask forgiveness from those who may find it too self-centred or too pious. It tries to tell the story of a believer going through stages of cancer. If it offers some spiritual light on others in such times of struggle, that justifies it for me. ”
Michael Paul Gallagher SJ died on 6 November 2015.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 162 : Winter 2015

Obituary

Fr Michael Paul Gallagher (1939-2015)

26 August 1939 : Born in Dublin. Raised in Collooney, Co. Sligo.
Early Education at Collooney NS; Ringsend Vocational School, Clongowes Wood College SJ; UCD
8 October 1961: Entered Society at St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
9 October 1963: First Vows at St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
1963 - 1965: Oxford, UK - Studying for B Litt at Campion Hall
1965 - 1967: Chipping Norton, UK - Studying Philosophy at Heythrop College
1967 - 1968: Loyola - Regency: Lecturer in English at UCD
1968 - 1969: Baltimore, MD, USA - Research Fellow at Johns Hopkins University
1969 - 1975: Milltown Park - Studying Theology
23 June 1972: Ordained at Gonzaga Chapel, Milltown Park, Dublin
1973: Lecturer in English at UCD; Doctoral Studies in Theology at QUB
1975 - 1978: University Hall - Vice Superior; Lecturer in English at UCD
1976: Tertianship in Bangalore, India
2 February 1978: Final Vows at University Hall, Hatch Street, Dublin
1978 - 1986: John Sullivan, Monkstown – Doctoral Studies; Co ordinator for Atheism; Lecturer in English at UCD
1980: Rector of John Sullivan House
1981: Province Consultor; Assists in Tabor
1986 - 1987: Sabbatical in Latin America
1987 - 1990: Rutilio Grande - Superior; Lecturer in English at UCD; Formation Delegate; Co-ordinator for Atheism
1990 - 1992: Bellarmino, Rome, Italy - Pontifical Council for Dialogue with Non-believers
1992 - 1993: San Saba Parish, Rome - Pontifical Council for Dialogue with Non-believers
1993 - 1995: Gesù, Rome, Italy -- Pontifical Council for Dialogue with Non-believers
1995 - 1999: Leeson St – Faith & Culture Apostolate; Writer; Lecturer in Theology at Gregorian, Rome (Sem I)
1999 - 2000: Loyola - Faith & Culture Apostolate; Writer; Lecturer in Theology at Gregorian, Rome (Sem I)
2000 - 2009: Rome, Italy - Writer; Professor of Fundamental Theology at Gregorian University
2005: Dean of Theology at Gregorian University
2009 - 2015: Bellarmino, Rome, Italy - Rector; Emeritus Professor of Fundamental Theology at Gregorian University
2015: Loyola - Writer

On a visit home for a conference in January 2015, Michael Paul realised that he needed to see his doctors again, as he was feeling unwell. So began another battle with cancer, and following various treatments, he enjoyed a good period of remission through the summer months. He remained in contact with his wide circle of friends and continued to write. In September further treatment was required, which did not agree with him, and he entered a period of palliative care. He became quite unwell and went into St Vincent's hospital on Monday, 2 November. His condition deteriorated through the week, and on Friday he began to fade significantly. He died very peacefully on Friday night in the presence of his community and some Jesuit friends, having just received the Sacrament of the sick.

In memory of Michael Paul - A letter of thanksgiving

Brendan Staunton

Dear Michael Paul,

You were a Renaissance man who understood the modem world. The world Vatican II addressed as a friend, not a foe, in Gaudium et Spes; a first in the history of 21 Councils. You too, being a child of Vatican 2, moved from the ad intra to the ad extra, married them, and generated fresh faith.

You played brilliantly many a role: teacher, lecturer, writer, spiritual director, retreat giver, administrator, Vatican delegate, Dean of Theology, Jesuit Superior and Rector, formation work, film critic. I could go on, but you were not only a role. Your mission included many friends and family with whom you shared the joys and sorrows, the griefs and anxieties. Your loss will be felt by many for a while to come.

We go back a long way: as a young and naive philosophy student you invited me to give a talk in University Hall, on culture. I shrink now recalling the shallowness of my reflections then. But a seed was sown, and this year alone I spoke on Faith and Culture to the Down and Connor priests in Dromalis; the Tuam Diocesan priests and bishop in Westport; at Dublin's Culture Night in the Pro Cathedral.

Also spoke at the Hopkins festival in Newbridge and attended the Hopkins weekend in Oxford. Your lectures in UCD on Joyce still bearing fruit! And how you opened up Joyce's humorous observations, lively language and bittersweet memories of Jesuit Schools. When we talked after the Hopkins weekend, memories of your time in Oxford were evoked, and how we laughed at the academic follies.

I recall fondly your time with us as Tertians in Tullabeg. I shredded all my notebooks two years later, except four pages of your wisdom sayings. I recall now off the top of my head,”priests today need to be bi-lingual”. Spirituality and Psychology; Art and Spirituality, Faith and Culture; Poetry and Theology. Newman's thinking on Imagination a constant, key theme for you, from which I benefited hugely.

Writing this, the day following your death, after teary phone calls, the sadness is with me still. The memories are so warın though. Especially the times you helped me find the words for growing pains crying within me. (A gift I also received from another Gallagher, Cormac.)

Most memorably, an evening walk around the Pantheon, when you bought a particular coffee to be brought home to Donal Neary. That night, you spoke to me about Charles Taylor, who hit the nail on the head. I may have been "flourishing", but a lack lingered. I had grown beyond “psychology”, after 30 years in a psychoanalytic world; London and Klein, Dublin and Lacan. And more than ten years on the couch. Still appreciate Freud for the genius he was, but the Ignatian ideal was into something more. Our talk that night returned me to a Spiritual Director, and a retrieval of formal prayer that had been neglected. The Martha had forgotten the Mary; doing good and avoiding God. Sure, I still prayed, vocal prayers, petitionary prayers, prayers of praise, liturgical prayer, but very little time given to tuning in the Holy Spirit praying within me. That indwelling presence that echoes unconscious, manifested in dreams. “I think where I am not”. You loosened that bond for many, as Tom Casey's exarnple in his glowing Irish Catholic tribute shows; the student declaring himself an atheist, and it emerging from the way he was listened to, that his asthma suffering was there.

Remember you saying the “Jesuits were founded in bed”?! The Ignatian genius was to take his subjectivity seriously, attending to the emotional vicissitudes he was experiencing while recovering from his wound. (What we now call Cognitive Behaviour Therapy), He was ahead of his time, embracing pagan humanism.

You were such a great host in the Bellarmino. Your flowing fluent Italian was beautiful - brought out the poet in you - as was your care for all your Community, over a hundred students and staff from four continents. And yet you had time for me, with your listening attitude and ability not to understand too quickly. Remember some of our anger in Tertianship? Your insight has stayed with me: “spiritual maturity is accepting not being understood by Authority”! (Later I learned you heard that from Kolvenbach, who got it from Gabriel Marcel?)

I was chuffed when you told me the title of a recent book, Faith Maps, came to you as I talked about the story of painting as a map and metaphor to contextualise faith, for the generation of our nephews and nieces, for whom Tridentinism was so uncool. For people who think Vatican II is the Pope's summer residence! Or for young people who think the four evangelists are John, Paul, Ringo and George!! I recall your enthusiasm when we first heard Bridge over troubled waters": "first song in the history of pop music that sings of desire more than need”, reaching out to an other.

I was delighted you came to my golden jubilee and 70th birthday last May in Gonzaga, where we were ordained. And so good to meet you at Bill Mathew's jubilee last month too. Little did we know on that joyous occasion what lay ahead for you. I can't imagine the pain of these last three weeks. Your legacy will last, I've no doubt about that: verba volant, scripta manent!
And now I imagine you enjoying the company of Rahner, Lonergan and Von Balthazar. You saw early on that their theological style was a function of their historical period. You now too are seeing face-to-face the vision of Gods' glory. And no one deserves that more than you. It is so consoling to know you will be praying for me and us.

I don't forget all the hidden goodness of your good life. Did you not write Joe Dargan's 'Our Mission in Ireland'? Put Joe's sociological prose into English!

Your life was an open book, and hidden with Christ in God. Yeats County certainly bore fruit from UCD to the Greg, and for this I thank you and God for you. You are now, to quote a hero of yours, the Bard of Avon, “one of precious friends, hid in death's dateless night”.
And the light you shone is truly a holy one. You were a spiritual master for our season, where “symbols clashed”, and the unrecognised presence of culture was recognised by you, and shown to be a friend rather than the foe of faith.

You once quoted Merton to me: “our greatest fear is a fear of depth”. Ignatius is proud of you! You found God in culture. Thanks to Newman and the other giants you identified with through your generous and open response to your Jesuit calling. Would I be reviewing films for the Messenger now, had you not pioneered that work for Studies?
LDS.
In Xto,
Brendan

Messenger of wonder and wonderful messenger

Tom Casey

Early in his rich and varied teaching career, the gifted Irish Jesuit, Fr. Michael Paul Gallagher, who died on 6th November at the age of 76, used to give an introductory course to students of English literature in University College Dublin. At a certain point, he liked to write these three intriguing words on the blackboard: “ha”, “aha”, and “ah”. He made his students sit up and think by claiming that these three strange sounds stood not only for the three basic approaches toward literature, but also for the three fundamental stances toward human life as a whole.

He asked them not to fall into the trap of arriving too quickly at judgments, to be careful not to rush hastily into uttering a smug and even contemptuous “ha”, before they even took the trouble to experience and understand things properly. He then pronounced the second sound – “aha” – with a rising rhythm, to make audible the moment when we understand something. He told them how college was meant to be full of these “aha” moments, as they learned new things and discovered new insights. But, then, looking solemnly at his audience, Fr. Michael Paul would warn them not to become so excited by their “aha” moments that they ended up stifling the deepest and most central experience of all - the experience of wonder, the “ah” experience.

Michael Paul Gallagher brought a liberating “ah” of fresh air to individual Irish people, to the Irish Church, and, later, through his work in the Vatican and at the Pontifical Gregorian University, to countless students and Catholics from around the world. He was a messenger of wonder and a wonderful messenger of God. He had an uncanny gift for helping people to reach the threshold of wonder in their lives, to get in touch with their deepest hungers and desires. He invited them to open new doors into the mystery of themselves, and to discover a God who was much more loving than they had dared imagine.

Born in 1939 in the village of Collooney, County Sligo, he credited it with shaping his feelings and imagination, and was always grateful for the stability and roots this village world gave him. Precisely because it was such a reassuring anchor, it gave him the leeway to broaden his horizons as time went on. At the age of twelve he was sent to the Jesuit boarding school Clongowes. From there he went to UCD, and after finishing his degree in English and French literature, was awarded a grant from the French government to study at the University of Caen Normandy from 1960 to 1961. The year in France was a turning point in his life. Although the Second Vatican Council would only open in 1962, there was already great excitement and new life palpable in French Catholicism. Michael Paul met young French Catholics who were passionate about their faith, who read the Bible, prayed in nearby monasteries, and invited notable French philosophers and theologians to address them. He also met significant nurnbers of agnostics and atheists for the first time in his life. Over the course of many long conversations that went on late into the night, he found he had a gift for explaining faith in a new and fresh language, not the technical jargon of abstract arguments, but the living poetry of personal discovery.

After returning from Caen, he entered the Jesuits, with a sense that he was being called to help people discover the wonder of faith in a world where unbelief was in the ascendant. When he completed his two year novitiate, he was sent to Oxford to study Renaissance literature. While there, he began to realize that despite the distance some of his fellow students felt from faith, the language of poetry opened up for them an avenue into wonder and their inner experience. Over the years ahead, he began to form the conviction that doctrine alone was not enough to speak to people; like Jesus, who used parables, Michael Paul found himself drawn to an imaginative presentation of faith, drawing on the resources of literature.

From his Jesuit formation, Michael Paul learned how to find and trust the hidden poetry in himself, and this skill enabled him in his turn to help others to liberate their human depths. He realized that his surface self was driven toward performing and being successful. From childhood onwards, he had wanted to do well and make his parents proud of him, and so excelled in academic studies as well as drama and debating. But as well as this "performer" side to himself, at a deeper level he felt at home with the wonder of being a "child”, he was happy to trust his feelings, to allow himself to be playful, and to reach out to others without pushing himself to perform in order that they would like him. He made a sustained and conscious effort to live out of the deeper level of himself. When he became aware of surface desires and immature responses, he knew he was out of tune with himself. He picked up the warning signs through a certain sense of dissatisfaction and emptiness. He countered this gnawing surface self by re-tuning into the deeper and more serene wavelength inside, where he lived from a satisfying rootedness together with a great openness of vision. Because his experience of prayer and discernment taught him to be aware of the dangers of this false, performing, “impressing everyone” side to himself, he was particularly well equipped to help others go beyond the surface self and find that deeper peace to help them negotiate the challenges of life.

Michael Paul was ordained to the priesthood in 1972. Afterwards he continued to lecture in English at UCD, and also researched the phenomenon of atheism and how churches and pastoral workers were responding to it. As a result of this research he became the first Roman Catholic ever to be awarded a doctorate in theology by Queen's University, Belfast.

In 1974 he published a controversial article, “Atheism Irish Style”. At a time when the general consensus held that Irish Catholicism was in a thoroughly healthy state, Fr. Michael Paul alarmed many by suggesting that it was actually dying a slow death. He claimed that Irish Catholics (most of all young Irish Catholics) were becoming increasingly disillusioned with many of the externals of church life – religion taught impersonally or in an authoritarian manner in school, dull Sunday rituals, and boring sermons. Although a huge emphasis was placed upon attendance at Mass, the actual practice of it was spiritually impoverished with little prayerfulness, no sense of living worship, and no real attempt to create a human community. The article and subsequent talks and interviews generated huge discussion and debate.

Less than 10 years later, in 1983, he published his first, and most famous book, Help My Unbelief, aimed at readers who were bewildered at why God was becoming so unreal for them. His focus was not on intellectual arguments for or against God, because he did not believe this was where the real story was. He concentrated instead on dispositions and basic attitudes. He was wise enough to know that people do not make decisions about faith upon purely rational grounds. Our decisions for or against faith generally involve a strong sense of how we feel about ourselves and life.

He gave the example of à college student who came into his office to discuss an essay, but suddenly announced in an aggressive tone, “I'm an atheist, you know." When Michael Paul ignored this declaration, and continued to give him feedback on his essay, the student asked, “Isn't it your job to convert me?”: Michael Paul responded, “I wouldn't dream of converting anyone in that tone of voice”, and went on to say that faith was so precious to him that he would not even consider indulging in a useless argument about it. But if the student were willing to listen, he would be more than happy at some other time to explain what faith meant for him. Sure enough, the student returned a few days later. He spoke about this and that for a while, before suddenly announcing, “I suffer from asthma”. And then he went on to share how asthma had destroyed his childhood because it had cut him off from other people, made him ashamed, and angry at God and at life. This story taught Michael Paul something crucial: behind many aggressive denials of faith (“I'm an atheist”) there can be a much less aggressive reality of hurt and disenchantment (”I suffer from asthma”).

In 1990, Michael Paul was invited to work in the Holy See's Pontifical Council for Dialogue with Non-Believers. Five years later he began teaching theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, where he later became Dean of Theology as well as Rector of the large “Bellarmino” community of Jesuit graduate students. Despite his teaching and the big burden of administration, he somehow found time to write, give talks, and listen to many young individuals, helping them to enter into a space of freedom they often did not know they had. In terms of his own writing, he began to see himself more and more as a "translator”, translating the insights of major theologians into a language that honest, educated, non-specialized searchers could understand. Michael Paul read through countless books in a way that was faithful to those who hadn't the time or energy to read such books. He tried to carry out his academic work in tune with Christ's compassion for all seekers and searchers.

When Michael Paul was hit by cancer for the second time in January 2015, he was faithful to his lifelong practice of applying the lessons he learned from his own struggles for the benefit of others. He reflected upon his illness and wrote down his reflections. His final book, about his own journey through cancer, Into Extra Time, is due to be published soon. In this month's Sacred Heart Messenger, he has an article called "The Prospect of Dying". Its final paragraph encapsulates the graced imagination that always enabled Fr, Michael Paul Gallagher to see seeds of hope in what at first looks like a burnt-out desert:

“The outer process of dying may be frightening, but do I really want to stay here forever? If I listen to my heart, I know I am made for more life than I can imagine. When God's promise overcomes my fears, what St. Paul calls the 'last enemy' becomes an unexpected friend.”

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam uasal

Gill, Henry V, 1872-1945, Jesuit priest, scientist and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/17
  • Person
  • 08 July 1872-27 November 1945

Born: 08 July 1872, Cabra, Dublin City
Entered: 17 April 1890, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 29 July 1906, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1911, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 27 November 1945, St Vincent's Nursing Home, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death

Younger brother of Frederick Gill - LEFT 1928

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1896 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1908 at Oxford England (ANG) studying Science
by 1910 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1917 Military Chaplain : 2nd Royal Irish Rifles BEF France

◆ Jesuits in Ireland https://www.jesuit.ie/blog/damien-burke/a-sparrow-to-fall/

A sparrow to fall
Damien Burke
A BBC Northern Ireland documentary, Voices 16 – Somme (BBC 1 NI on Wednesday 29th June, 9pm) explores the events of 1916 through the testimony of the people who witnessed it and their families. Documentary makers and relatives of Jesuit chaplain Willie Doyle were shown his letters, postcards and personal possessions kept here at the Irish Jesuit Archives. In the 1920s, Alfred O’Rahilly used some of these letters in his biography of Fr Willie Doyle SJ. Afterwards they were given to Willie’s brother, Charles, and were stored for safekeeping in the basement of St Francis Xavier’s church, Lower Gardiner Street, Dublin in 1949. In 2011, they were accessioned into the archives. Fr Willie Doyle SJ was one of ten Irish Jesuits who served as chaplains at the battle of the Somme (1 July- 18 November 1916): seven with the British forces; three with the Australian. Their letters, diaries and photographs witness their presence to the horror of war.

Fr Henry Gill SJ, 2nd Royal Irish Rifles (11 July 1916):
Just a line to say I am still alive. We are of course, as always, “in it”...I have been in, and I feel I know more than I want about shells of all sizes and conditions. It is a horrible and squalid business. Trenches full of mud with bodies of dead Germans and British lying unburied all along. Please God it will end soon, and that we may be able to forgot it all as quickly as possible. Gill was tasked with writing to relatives of soldiers who had been killed. These letters followed a pattern, where the following were mentioned, even if false: a quick death, little suffering and recent reception to the sacraments. He only lived a few minutes after he was shot and can have suffered but little pain, He always went to Confession and Holy Communion before an attack, now you may therefore be at ease about him. The letter was written by Gill to Maggie Duffy of Belfast in September 1916. Her husband, John Duffy was killed at the battle of the Somme in July 1916. Your Husband lived a good life and died a Hero’s death, that will not make your sorrow less, but it will help you to bear it in resignation to God’s will, Who, does not even a allow a sparrow to fall without his Providence

https://www.jesuit.ie/blog/damien-burke/the-last-parting-jesuits-and-armistice/

The last parting: Jesuits and Armistice
At the end of the First World War, Irish Jesuits serving as chaplains had to deal with two main issues: their demobilisation and influenza. Some chaplains asked immediately to be demobbed back to Ireland; others wanted to continue as chaplains. Of the thirty-two Jesuits chaplains in the war, five had died, while sixteen were still serving.
Fr Henry Gill SJ, on leave on 10 November 1918 wrote:
In the mean time I had made arrangement for a trip of the greatest possible interest to myself. I was to be motored to Chaumout to get the train to Paris...and on the way I was to pay a visit to Domremy the birthplace of Joan of Arc. I looked forward to this visit with great pleasure. I had set out from Rouen, where the Saint was put to death, to begin my work at the front, and now after almost four years I was to visit her birthplace, and her Basilica, and to have the opportunity of making a pilgrimage to thank her for her protection during these years. For I had set out under her patronage. Fr Gill physically survived the war, but mentally, would suffer from what we call today post-traumatic stress, but in his time, was called nerves.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 1st Year No 3 1926
Fr Henry Gill has received a communication from the President of the French Republic thanking him for distinguished service during the late war.

Irish Province News 6th Year No 3 1931
Rathfarnham :
Our Minister, Fr. Henry Gill, has had the honour of being elected a member of the Royal Irish Academy.

Irish Province News 21st Year No 1 1946
Obituary :
Fr. Henry Gill (1872-1890-1945)
Fr. Henry Gill died very peacefully in St. Vincent's Nursing Home at 8.30 a.m. on Tuesday, November 27th, whilst Mass was being offered for his intentions by two or three of the Community, at Leeson Street, He had been ailing for the past six months with an internal trouble which was diagnosed as cancer of the liver, but he was mercifully spared any acute pain, and it was only in the last few days of his life that his heart began to show serious signs of weakness. Indeed he took an active interest in the routine of daily life throughout his illness, and three days before his death was still able to correct final page proofs of a small “Life of Saint Joseph” which he had written during the past year. At the foot of the last page of these proofs he wrote in a hand that was shaky, but still legible : “Saint Joseph, Patron of a Happy Death, pray for us”.
Fr. Gill was born at Roebuck House near Dublin on July 8th, 1872. He lived to be the eldest surviving son of the late H. J. Gill, formerly a member of the Irish Party and head of the well-known publishing firma of Messrs. M. H. Gill and Son, Ltd. His grandfather had been Lord Mayor of Dublin, and Fr. Gill was a staunchly loyal son of the city of Dublin throughout his long life. He was educated at first in a small day-school at No. 6 Harcourt Street, where Newman had formerly opened one of his Houses for resident students of the Catholic University. From this preparatory school Henry went to Clongowes, where he remained until the summer of 1889. He then spent some months as a student at old University College on St. Stephen's Green, and did not enter the novitiate until April of the following year. In later life he used to tell a humorous tale of the downcast young citizen of Dublin who journeyed by train and car to the Tullabeg of those far off days. His vocation, so he would argue, was a clear instance of the triumph of God's grace over every natural inclination! After two years in the Bog, Henry came back to the city and spent the next three years and a half at Milltown Park, where he was beadle of the Juniors and attended lectures at the old College in Mathematics and Science. Thence he went to Louvain for his Philosophy, 1895-8, where he was brought into contact with professors who were eager to explain traditional principles of philosophy in terms of modern science. On his return from Louvain Mr. Gill spent the next five years in the Colleges (Limerick, Galway and Clongowes), but gave little promise at this time of the distinctions that were to come to him in later life. He was indeed curiously unable to teach a straightforward class, even in his own favourite subjects, though he was later to display an exceptional gift for the exposition and quiet criticism of scientific principles. From 1903-7 he studied Theology in Milltown Park, and was ordained there by Archbishop Walsh on July 18th, 1906.
Fr. Gill was then granted permission by Fr. Conmee to study the Physical Sciences at Cambridge for the next two years. Professor J. J. Thompson was then organising the Cavendish Laboratories as a centre of world-famous scientific research, and Fr. Gill had the good fortune to be associated for a time with some of the men who were later to make history in the development of modern Physics. He never lost the memory of those happy days; and when his old Professor published his autobiography in 1936, Fr. Gill reviewed it in Studies under the well-chosen title : “Brave Days at Cambridge”. He was a student of Downing College, but resided in St. Edmund's House where he had the late Most Rev. Dr. McNulty, Bishop of Nottingham, as his friend and fellow-student. Fr. Gill's own interests were centred at this time on the problems of seismography, and he read a paper to the British Association in 1913 in which he put forward an ingenious theory to explain the distribution of earthquakes in time and space. He was also keenly interested in the development of Wireless Telegraphy - then in its initial stages - and was accustomed to give popular lectures in Dublin on this and kindred subjects. He attended many of the later annual meetings of the British Association, and was frequently invited to preach at some Catholic church during its sessions.
After his period at Cambridge Fr. Gill was sent to Tronchiennes in Belgium for his Tertianship. He was then stationed for three years in Belvedere, until he came to Rathfarnham Castle as its first Spiritual Father in 1913. A year later came the First Great War, and Fr. Gill. was one of the first to send in his name to Fr. Provincial as volunteering for work as Army Chaplain. His offer was accepted, and he spent the next four years in the trenches of Flanders, with no more interruption. than the customary short leaves from active service. Those who remember his visits to Rathfarnham during these intervals will recall the impression of a man who seemed strangely ill-assorted with military life. Yet the plain truth is that both officers and men of the regiment to which he was attached (Second Battalion of the Royal Irish Rifles) were devoted to him, and the gallantry with which he responded to every claim on his services during those four grim years of trench warfare is attested by the double award of Military Cross and Distinguished Service Order. One officer who was with him throughout those four years and who was present at his funeral spoke with real emotion of his memories. “He seemed like a lost soul wherever you met him”, was his comment, “but he was always there when wanted, and was afraid of no man”. His unfailing sense of humour and his great gifts of companionship made him a special favourite with the officers mess. But, to the end of his days, he was in touch with some of the men who bad served under him, and their letters revealed the same genuine affection for their old ‘Padre’.
After the war Fr. Gill came to University Hall for five years, where he assisted Fr. George Roche and Fr. Wrafter in their work for the students of University College, and was also able to continue for a. time his former research-work. But his vitality had been much lessened by the long experience of the war-years, and he soon abandoned active research-work. . He went as Minister to Belvedere College in 1923. Here he spent the next seven years, and became a very loyal Belvederian. He was then transferred as Minister for one year to Rathfarnham Castle. The last change came in 1931, when he joined the Leeson Street Community as their Fr. Minister and later as Spiritual Father. For the last fourteen years of his life it is no exaggeration to say that Fr. Gill's kindly personality and the stimulus of his conversation made community life a joy to many of his brethren. He was also, for many years past, a regular contributor to Studies, The Irish Monthly and the Irish Ecclesiastical Record. His contributions to the latter were published in book form in two small volumes entitled “Jesuit Spirituality” (1935) and “Christianity in Daily Life” (1942), both of them full of his characteristic common sense. A selection of the many essays on scientific topics which he had contributed to Studies, Thought and the Irish Ecclesiastical Record was issued by Messers. Gill and Son in 1943 under the excellent title “Fact and Fiction in Modern Science”. It was at once most favourably received both in England and Ireland. In the United States the impression made was so remarkable that Fordham University. undertook to produce a special American edition of this work, which was issued some months before Fr. Gill's death. He also published in 1941 a short biography of the celebrated Jesuit physicist, Fr. Roger Boscovich, which was no more than a brief sketch of a more ambitious work which he had planned for some years past, but was unable to complete owing to his failing, health. May he rest in peace.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Henry Gill 1872-1945
Fr Henry Gill was born at Roebuck House Dublin on July 8th 1872, son of HJ Gill, former Irish Party Member of Parliament, and head of the publishing firm, Gill’s O’Connell Street Dublin.

Henry was educated at Belvedere College and entered the Society in 1890, after a short period as a student at ‘6 St Stephen’s Green. In the course of his studies he displayed remarkable talent in science, and consequently, after his ordination, he was sent to Cambridge for tow years to study under Sir J Thompson.

On the outbreak of the First World War, he volunteered as a chaplain and served throughout the whole course. After the War he resided at University Hall for 5 years, and finally after various periods as Minister in various Houses, he settled down in Leeson Street for the rest of his life as Spiritual Father and writer.

He was a regular contributor to “Studies”, the “Irish Ecclesiastical Record” and the “Irish Monthly”. His published works include : “Jesuit Spirituality”, “Christianity in Daily Life”, “Fact and Fiction in Modern Science”. The latter book is still a favourite and enjoys a steady sale in the United States. He also published a biography of the celebrated Jesuit physicist Fr Boscovitch.

He died on November 27th 19456. He was a deeply religious man, with a remarkable sense of kindly humour, and his sayings at recreation and his stories are still recounted to the younger generation.

Gwynn, Aubrey, 1892-1983, Jesuit priest and academic

  • IE IJA J/10
  • Person
  • 17 February 1892-18 May 1983

Born: 17 February 1892, Clifton, Bristol, Gloucestershire, England
Entered: 30 September 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1924, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1929, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 18 May 1983, Our Lady's Hospice, Dublin

Part of the Milltown Park, Dublin Community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Gwynn, Aubrey Osborn
by Noreen Giffney

Gwynn, Aubrey Osborn (1892–1983), Jesuit priest and academic, was born 17 February 1892 at Clifton, Bristol, England, the second son among six children (four boys and two girls) of Stephen Lucius Gwynn (qv), writer and MP, and his wife and first cousin, Mary Louise Gwynn, daughter of Rev. James Gwynn of Dublin and Bath. Born into an esteemed Church of Ireland family, he was the great-grandson of William Smith O'Brien (qv), the grandson of Rev. Dr John Gwynn (qv), regius professor of divinity at TCD (1888–1907), and the nephew of Edward John Gwynn (qv), provost of TCD (1927–37). On his mother's conversion to Roman catholicism (1902), Aubrey, his brother Denis Gwynn (qv), and their siblings were received into the catholic church at Farm Street, London, and brought up as catholics. Due to the nature of his father's work, much of Aubrey's early life was divided between London and Dublin.

Educated at the Jesuit Clongowes Wood College, Co. Kildare (1903–8), Gwynn spent a year of private study in Munich before becoming the first student to sign the register at the newly chartered UCD, where he later gained first-class honours (BA, 1912; MA 1915) in classics. When Fr William Delany (qv) admitted him to the Jesuit noviceship in Tullabeg, Rahan (1912), Gwynn intended to join the Chinese mission and work in Hong Kong, but under the guidance of Delany's successor, Dr T. V. Nolan, he entered academic life. After studying for a year at Rathfarnham, he went in 1916 on a travelling studentship to Oxford (Campion Hall), where he was awarded the Cromer essay prize (1917) and graduated B. Litt. (1919). He taught classics and German for two years at Clongowes (1917–19) before spending two years studying philosophy at the Jesuit College, Louvain (1919–21), and a further four years studying theology at Milltown Park, Dublin. He was ordained at Milltown Park on 24 July 1924 and trained for a final year in Exaten, the Netherlands (1926), then took his final vows in Dublin on 2 February 1929.

Initially employed (1927) as an assistant lecturer in ancient history at UCD, Gwynn replaced Daniel A. Binchy (qv) as lecturer in medieval history on the latter's appointment as Irish Free State minister in Berlin. When John Marcus O'Sullivan (qv) resumed his duties as professor of history in 1932, he was so impressed with the young lecturer's abilities that he had his position made permanent. Sixteen years later, in 1948, Gwynn was appointed first professor of medieval history. Actively involved in the administration of UCD, he was a member of the governing body, dean of the faculty of arts (1952–6), and a member of the NUI senate. He also served as president of the RIA (1958–61).

A pioneering scholar, Gwynn wrote or edited numerous contributions to ancient, medieval, and modern history, on such subjects as Roman education, Archbishop Richard Fitzralph (qv) of Armagh, and Irish emigrants in the West Indies. His many articles, numbering over one hundred, as well as his reviews, which he often initialled P. D. (‘Poor Devil’), were published in various journals, including the Journal of Hellenic Studies, Analecta Hibernica, and the Irish Ecclesiastical Record. As a member of the Irish Manuscripts Commission (1943–74) he revived the study and publication of the Calendar of Papal Letters. He was exonerated after being accused, by Regina Zukasiewicz, of stealing her deceased husband's manuscripts (1956). Despite being plagued by bouts of depression, he gained international recognition and an array of awards, among them offers of honorary doctorates from QUB (1964), and TCD (1965) – the second of which he declined. However, Gwynn was not impressed with his honorifics asserting that the only qualifications he required were SJ – alluding to his membership of the Society of Jesus.

Gwynn lived mostly with the Jesuit community at 35 Lower Leeson Street (1927–62), where he was superior of residence (1932–45). A keen supporter of the Missionary Sisters of St Columba and St Joseph's Young Priests’ Society, he helped to establish the latter's civil service branch (1930), advised on the preparing of their constitution (1945), and was editor of their quarterly magazine, St Joseph's Sheaf (1927–49). After he retired from UCD in 1961 he moved to Milltown (1962), where he lectured for two years on church history and tended to the library (1962–6). He remained active, despite failing eyesight, until a fractured femur left him in St Vincent's Hospital; he then moved to Our Lady's Hospice, Harold's Cross, where he died 18 May 1983. He was buried two days later, following funeral mass at the Jesuit church, Gardiner Street.

Aubrey Gwynn's private papers, Jesuit archives; file of correspondence between Robert Dudley Edwards and Aubrey Gwynn (1950–68), UCD Archives, LA 22/782–3; F. X. Martin, ‘The historical writings of Reverend Professor Aubrey Gwynn, S. J.’, Medieval studies presented to Aubrey Gwynn, S. J., ed. J. A. Watt, J. B. Morrall, and F. X. Martin (1961), 502–9; Geoffrey Hand, ‘Professor Aubrey Gwynn’, Hibernia (1962), 10; University College Dublin. Report of the president for the session 1961–62 (1962), 72–4; Burke, IFR (1976), 532–3; Geoffrey Hand, ‘Father Aubrey Gwynn, S. J.’, Ir. Times, 21 May 1983, 8; Irish Province News, xx, no. 11 (1983), 348–50, 367–9; Report of the president, University College Dublin 1982–83 (1983), 154; R. D. Edwards, ‘Professor Aubrey Gwynn, S. J.’, Anal. Hib., xxxi (1984), xi; F. X. Martin, ‘Aubrey Osborn Gwynn, 1892–1983’, Royal Irish Academy Annual Report, 1983–4 (1984), 2–6; Clara Cullen, ‘Historical writings of Aubrey Gwynn: addendum’, Aubrey Gwynn, S. J., The Irish church in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, ed. Gerard O'Brien (1992), xiii–xiv; Geoffrey Hand, ‘Aubrey Gwynn: the person’, Studies, lxxxi (1992), 375–84; Fergus O'Donoghue, ‘Aubrey Gwynn: the Jesuit’, Studies, lxxxi (1992); 393–8; Katherine Walsh, ‘Aubrey Gwynn: the scholar’, Studies, lxxxi (1992), 385–92

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 17th Year No 1 1942

Recent articles by Fr. Aubrey Gwynn in the “Irish Ecclesiastical Record” were the subject of a very flattering notice in the 4 October issue of the 'Times Literary Supplement'. They referred to valuable contributions made by him to the history of the Dublin diocese in the 11th century, and in particular to interesting discoveries about Bishop Patrick of Dublin, whom he proves to have been a monk at Worcester under St. Wulfstain and author of the medieval scholastic poems in one of the Cotton MSS.

Irish Province News 58th Year No 3 1983

Milltown Park
Fr Aubrey Gwynn (†)
Aubrey Gwynn went to his Maker at 6.45 on the morning of 18th May: requiescat in pace! The Province will hardly see his like again. From his childhood days in London at the turn of the century, he could remember great events like the funeral of Queen Victoria, and the celebrations on the relief of Mafeking. Yet right to the end he took an interest in everybody and everything; he was in no way out of touch or out of sympathy with the times; he and the scholastics greatly enjoyed each other's company. Again, he was both a consummate scholar and a zealous, devout priest. In his late eighties he was still contributing learned articles to Seanchas Ardmhacha, and was rarely, if ever, missing from his accustomed spot at community Mass. In his earlier years he had been closely associated with St Joseph's Young Priests Society and the Columban Sisters, and both these bodies have contributed appreciations which are printed below. It is also perhaps worth recalling how well Aubrey succeeded in being on excellent terms with staff at Maynooth College and with members of the Hierarchy. At the funeral, Maynooth was represented by Mons. Patrick J. Corish and Dublin archdiocese by Bishop James Kavanagh: Cardinal 0 Fiaich regretted being unable to attend, owing to the death of his own brother (Dr Patrick Fee).
Aubrey is remembered with great affection by the Milltown Park community (here we are gathering into one many golden opinions) as a Simeon like figure, who redeemed the dignity of old age, never grumbled, complained or criticised, was so full of gratitude for his Jesuit vocation; who forty years ago treated scholastics as adults; the last of the generation of giants. He will continue to be remembered for his patient faith, his independence of spirit, tolerance of change, good humour, conviviality at table, debonair gentlemanliness, desire for life and determination to live, helpfulness and encouragement, graciousness, faithfulness and dedication, simplicity and humility.
One member of the community writes as follows: “Every day for ten years Aubrey concelebrated the Community Mass: at 10 am on Sundays, at 5.30 pm on weekdays in term, at 12.15 pm on weekdays in vacation and on Sundays. This showed an impressive willingness to adapt to different hours - a strength of faith which enabled him really to enjoy such varied styles of worship.
His loyalty to ‘The College’ (UCD, represented at the funeral by Mons. Feichin O'Doherty) showed me that an institution can be served with discrimination, with neither cynical detachment nor bland adoration.
His warm interest in each of us in the community was enormously encouraging - so different from the intrusive questioning by those who want to pigeon hole me for some future use, and different from the inattention of those who seem afraid to make human contact with me even for the length of a meal.
Another member expresses his appreciation in the following words: “I will remember Aubrey as a big man, a man who spanned the centuries and felt at home in many of them including much of our own. I will remember him as a grateful man, grateful to God and to us at Milltown. I will remember him as a lovable man who aged with grace and dignity. Finally I will remember Aubrey the priest, who celebrated the daily Eucharist with us faithfully and with determined step.
A fellow-historian and friend of Aubrey's, Katherine Walsh, who dedicated to him her recent work on Archbishop Richard FitzRalph, wrote from Vienna to the Rector as follows: “Kind friends contacted me by telephone and telegram to break the sad news of the death of Fr Aubrey Gwynn, May I offer through you my deepest sympathy to the community of Milltown Park, also to the Irish Jesuit Province, of which he was for so long a distinguished and respected ornament at home and abroad. My personal sense of loss is great - it was not merely FitzRalph that bound me to him. His personal and scholarly qualities were such that I valued his friendship, advice and encouragement very much. Also my husband Alfred learned to share my very deep affection for him and wishes to be associated in this word of appreciation. Our subsequent visits to Ireland will be the poorer without the pleasure of his great company. Requiescat in pace”.
Mr Brendan Daly of Waterford, who was National President of St Joseph's Young Priests Society from 1975 to 1982, sent the following appreciation: “For over forty years, Fr Aubrey Gwynn played a very important part in the formation and development of St Joseph's Young Priests Society. Space will allow for only a brief mention of the highlights of these activities. From 1927 1949 he was the Honorary Editor of ‘Saint Joseph's sheaf’, the Society's quarterly magazine. During most of this same period, he was also a member of a the Society's governing Council. In 1930 helped to establish the Civil Service Branch, and was its chaplain until 1936. He was also actively involved in the formation of other vocational branches. He advised on the preparation of the Society's 1945 Constitution.
Fr Gwynn gave of himself quietly but building up a Lay Society that its identity, purpose and motivation in the Eucharist and membership of the Mystical Body of Christ. He encouraged greater lay participation in the Apostolate of the Church, and imbued members with those ideals that were subsequently to be voiced in the decrees of the Second Vatican Council. He was a true priest of Jesus Christ who helped many lay people to live their own royal . priesthood. He has helped St Joseph's Young Priests Society to build up a rich heritage - a heritage which it values and shares with many, many others'.
The Vicar-General of the Missionary Sisters of St Columban, Sr Ita McElwain, sent the following tribute: Fr Aubrey Gwynn had a long and happy association with the Missionary Sisters of St Columban. This came about through his relationship with Mother Mary Patrick, formerly Lady Frances Moloney, who was a friend and contemporary of his mother. Mother M. Patrick knew Aubrey from his childhood and followed his career with interest. He, in turn, had a lifelong regard for her, and greatly admired her spirit and courage when, at the age of fifty, she joined the little band of women who were destined to become the first members of the Columban Sisters.
“Fr Gwynn was a regular visitor to the Motherhouse at Cahiracon, Co Clare. On at least two occasions he gave retreats to the sisters there, as well as an occasional triduum of prayer to the to student sisters at the house of studies located at Merrion square at that time. The house at Merrion square was cquired in 1942 when Mother M Patrick was superior-general of the he Columban Sisters and Fr Gwynn superior of the Jesuit house at Leeson Street. Father offered to provide a weekly Mass for the sisters, and this continued He advised on the preparation of the for many years. He came whenever he could and took a keen interest in the sisters studies and in the sisters fully in themselves when they were missioned finds overseas. Especially worthy of note was his invaluable help and support to the sisters doing medical studies: this was at a time when it was quite a departure for sisters to undertake the study of medicine and surgery. Fr Gwynn is remembered by us as a devoted priest and renowned scholar; a loyal friend whose invaluable advice and experience were greatly appreciated by a comparatively young and struggling congregation; a very open-hearted and good-humoured man who kept in close touch with us through all the years of our existence. May his great soul rest in peace”.
The following is the text of Aubrey's last letter to the Columban Sisters: 2nd Dec. 1982.
Dear Sister Maura.
Very many thanks to you all at Magheramore for the splendid bird that was duly delivered here yesterday evening as on so many other happy occasions. And my special greetings to those of your community who may remember me from the old days in Merrion square and Fitzwilliam square. I shall be 91 years old next February, and am beginning to feel that I am an old man.
For the past 21 years I have been very happy here, where everyone young and old about here is very kind. And I am ever more grateful for the many blessings I have received during my 91 years. Blessings on you all at Magheramore, and may Mother Patrick, who was my mother's friend, rest in реаcе.
Yours in Xt, / Aubrey Gwynn, S.J.'
The appreciation by Professor Geoffrey Hand appeared in the columns of the Irish Times on Saturday, 21st May.

Obituary

Fr Aubrey Gwynn (1892-1912-1983)

By the death of Fr Aubrey Gwynn the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus has lost one of its most distinguished and well-loved members.
He was born on the 7th February, 1892, at Clifton, Bristol, where his father, Stephen Gwynn, man of letters, historian, poet and member of the Irish Parliamentary Party, was at that time tutoring in a private crammer's. The Gwynn family were descended from Welsh settlers in Ulster during the 17th century, and were noted for the number of them who entered the ministry of the Church of Ireland. They also had a long and distinguished connection with Trinity College. Stephen's father, Rev John Gwynn, was Regius Professor of Divinity 1888-1917, and author of the great edition of the Book of Armagh, whilst his brother, Edward John Gwynn, was Provost of Trinity 1927-37. But the later generation of Gwynns had a strong infusion of Celtic blood, for Stephen Gwynn's mother was the elder daughter of William Smith O'Brien.
In 1896 the Gwynn family settled in London, where Aubrey attended a private preparatory school. He used to relate how amongst the small pupils was one Harold Macmillan – later British Prime Minister - who in some way made himself obnoxious and was sent to Coventry by his schoolfellows. The head master complained to their parents, with dire results for Aubrey, since at that time his father relied largely for income on his work as reader for the firm of Macmillan. In 1902 Mrs Mary Louise Gwynn was received into the Catholic Church and was followed by her children. Two years later Stephen Gwynn decided to return to Ireland and Aubrey was sent to Clongowes. He was accompanied by his elder brother, Lucius, a promising scholar who died at the age of twenty-nine after a long struggle against tuberculosis, and his younger brother, Denis, later a distinguished biographer and Professor of Modern Irish History in University College, Cork. Whilst at Clongowes, Aubrey already displayed his brilliance. He spent two years in Rhetoric class, winning in the first year the medal for first place in Senior Grade Latin, and in the second year the corresponding medal for Greek.
On leaving Clongowes, Aubrey had a year's private study in Munich and then entered University College, Dublin, becoming a member of Winton House, the predecessor of University Hall, He took his BA degree in 1912 and entered the noviceship at Tullabeg. After the noviceship he studied at Rathfarnham for a year, preparing for the MA and travelling studentship. The two years of the studentship were spent at Oxford, ending with the B. Litt. degree and Cromer Greek prize. Then followed two years teaching classics at Clongowes, philosophy at Louvain, theology at Mill town Park, ordination in 1924 and tertianship at Exaten, Holland, 1925-26.
Father Gwynn's first entrance into the life of University College was in 1927, when he was appointed lecturer in Ancient History. From then on, he was the recipient of one distinction after another. He became lecturer in Medieval History in 1930, professor of Medieval History in 1948, Dean of the Faculty of Arts 1951-56, member at various periods of the Governing Body of University College and of the Senate of the National University, President of the Royal Irish Academy 1958-61. In 1964 he was awarded the honorary degree of D. Litt. by Queen's University, Belfast.
As lecturer and professor Father Gwynn won universal praise. On his retirement in 1962, he was made the recipient of a Festschrift, a volume of essays on medieval subjects, edited by three of his colleagues, J. A. Wal . B. Morrall and F. X. Martin, OSA. The contributions by some twenty scholars from Irish, British, continental and American universities, were evidence of Father Gwynn's reputation outside Ireland. In the Foreword Professor Michael Tierney, president of University College, Dublin, emphasised the esteem in which Father Gwynn was held in his own country.
The essays gathered in this book are a well-deserved tribute to a man who has been a leader in historical work and in general scholarship for more than thirty years ... His unanimous election as President of the Royal Irish Academy was already evident of the position he held in the Irish world of learning... for a quarter of a century he has been the leader and teacher of a band of young scholars, and his pupils have achieved fame outside Ireland in countries where his own reputation had preceded them.'
Reviewing this volume in the Irish Times, another tribute was paid to Fr Gwynn by Professor F. S. Lyons, (later Provost of Trinity College) :
“Perhaps we are still too close to assess the full impact of Fr Gwynn on medieval studies in Ireland. But even now we can recognise that it has been very great. Great not only by virtue of his talents which, rather casually maybe, we have tended to take for granted, great not only because of the extent and quality of his published work, but great precisely through the influence he must have exer ted as a teacher”.
In addition to his constant work as lecturer or professor, Fr Gwynn displayed throughout his life an extra ordinary activity as a writer. Three of his major books are considered to be standard works of their kind, Roman Education from Cicero to Quintilian, Oxford, 1920, The English Austin Friars in the time of Wyclif Oxford, 1940. The Medieval Province of Armagh 1470-1545, Dundalk, 1946. He also collaborated with District Justice Dermot F Gleeson in producing the monumental History of the Diocese of Killaloe, Dublin, 1962. But, in addition, a flood of articles poured out from his pen, or rather typewriter. In the volume above referred to, Rey Professor Martin has listed over fifty of these articles, which are not articles in the ordinary sense, but learned monographs on ancient, medieval and modern topics. And this does not include the book reviews which he contributed steadily over the years to Studies and other learned journals. In this connection, a piece of Province folklore is worth preserving. Formerly book reviews in Studies were signed only with the writer's initials. Fr Gwynn felt that the initials AG were appearing with monotonous frequency, and alternated them with P.D. Asked what these letters signified, he smilingly replied ‘Poor devil'.
Although Fr Gwynn played such an active part in the life of University College, this did not mean that he he was in any way remote from the life of the Province. On the contrary, he was a most loyal and devoted member of it. He was a good community man, always in good humour, interested in the doings of others and ready to put his talents at their disposal. During his long stay in Leeson Street (he was Superior, 1932-'45), he did much to advise, encourage and help our Juniors who were passing through University College. For a considerable period he acted as editor of St Joseph's Sheaf, the organ of St Joseph's Young Priests Society, and enticed to write articles for it, thus giving them a useful introduction to the apostolate of writing. His loyalty to the Society in general was manifested by his constant study of its history, and many his articles dealt with the apostolate of Jesuits in various ages, especially on the foreign missions. Fr Gwynn had a special interest in the missions, and had close links both with our own missionaries and with others throughout the country, notably the Columban Fathers and Sisters.
On his retirement from University College, Fr Gwynn moved to Milltown Park. He lectured for two years on Church History and acted as librarian, 1962-6, but it became clear that he was no longer able for such tasks, and the rest of his retirement was devoted mainly to the revision of his articles on the medieval Irish Church, with the purpose of publishing them in book form. This again proved too much for his failing powers, and his final years were spent as a semi-invalid, consoled by the kindly care of the Milltown community, who came to regard him as a venerable father figure. His ninetieth birthday was signalised with a concelebrated Mass and a supper at which he received an enthusiastic ovation. He was reasonably active to the last until a fall resulted in a broken femur, the effects of which he was unable to recover. After some was weeks in St Vincent's Hospital, he was moved to Our Lady's Hospice, where he died peacefully on 18th May. His funeral at Gardiner Street was the occasion of a remarkable ecumenical event. It was presided over by BishopJames Kavanagh, representing His Grace the Archbishop of Dublin, and some of the burial prayers were recited by Right Rev.George Simms, former Church of Ireland Archbishop of Dublin and of Armagh, whose wife is a cousin of Fr Gwynn.
Fr Aubrey used to relate an incident which occurred when he was studying at Oxford. When the time came to submit part of his thesis to his supervisor, he followed the old Jesuit custom of inscribing the letters AMDG at the top of each sheet. The manuscript was returned to of him addressed to Rev A M D Gwynn, The writer unconsciously hinted at a truth. The familiar letters may not have been Fr Aubrey's initials, but they were most certainly the inspiration of his life.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 30 : December 1983

PORTRAIT FROM THE PAST : FATHER AUBREY GWYNN

Sister Sheila Lucey

A Columban Sister working in the Philippines pays tribute to the life and work of Father Aubrey

I first met Father Aubrey Gwynn in August in 1945, when I was assigned, straight after my profession, to our house of studies at 56 Merrion Square. Even then he had become a kind of Guardian Spirit to our young student sisters - some were studying medicine, others nursing, and I and a companion were taking up arts.

It was through Mother Mary Patrick that our sisters had come to know Father Gwynn. It seems that she had been a friend of his mother's. So, when the Columban Sisters came to Merrion Square in the early 40's a friendship started .which was to last throughout Fr Gwynn's long life.

His special concern was for the young student sisters. It was he who started the tradition of an eight o'clock Mass on Sunday morning, for the Merrion Square community, so that the students could have a longer sleep. He made it clear that there was to be no getting up earlier to study! When he couldn't come himself, he arranged for one or other of his brethren in Leeson St, to say the Mass, In later years, in the late 40's and early 50’s, he came for daily Mass.

Invariably he came for Midnight Mass at Christmas, in his very best attire, a beautifully-cut long clerical dress-coat. That was always a big occasion, and he seemed to enjoy every moment of it. Indeed, he was part of so many community celebrations in those years.

I remember how well he cooperated with all our clandestine preparations for Sister Mary Veronica's Silver Jubilee.

Right from the beginning, I found him a fascinating and stimulating personality, and a warm friend. He took a keen interest in each of us and in our studies. At the end of my first year I was asked to switch from German, as a degree subject, to history, which it was considered would be more useful on the missions. Certainly he made a difficult change easier for me. For two years I was his student. He initiated me into realms of history which were new to me, so I found his lectures valuabie, though I learned more from him outside the lecture-room than inside. Each vacation he arrived over to our house with an armful of books for me to read during the break, and he didn't limit himself to history - he also brought along some critical works on the English writers I was studying.

But it was after I finished my basic degree, and was sent on for graduate studies, that I really got to know Fr. Gwynn. At that time, he was coming for daily Mass, and at least a few times each week I was asked to see him in the parlour while he was having his breakfast, Those breakfast sessions stretched out longer and longer! He was so much of a medievalist that he could enter into all aspects of my MA thesis, on The Ancren Riwle (a medieval rule for anchoresses, which was also a treatise on the spirituality of that kind of life).

Later, when I got into my doctoral thesis, he got even more involved. This was right into his field, because the topic (English Prose Written by Irishmen in the Seventeenth Century) turned out to be as much historical as literary. It couldn't be otherwise in such a century, so full of religious and political controversy. From Professor Hogan I had imbibed a life-long appreciation of seventeenth century Eniglish literature. Now under Fr Gwynn's unobtrusive prodding I discovered for the first time that I had a glimmering of and historical sense after all!

Working on those seventeenth century writings, many of them anonymous, or written under pseudonyms, one had to be something of a literary sleuth. To satisfy" Fri Gwynn the evidence had to be exact and complete. He was a scrupulously honest scholar, and he expected those he worked with to be the same.

I certainly owe it to Fr Gwynn that I was able to persevere with my research and complete my PhD thesis. Theoretically Professor J.J. Hogan was my adviser, but he was an extremely busy person in those years. Besides he wasn't, familiar with the writings I had got into. In practice, Fr. Gwynn was my adviser and strong support throughout the years when I worked on my PhD thesis.

Indeed, many growing points of my life I seem to owe to Fr Gwynn. He it was who first launched me into print. While I was still a student he got me to review a book for Studies, a distinct honour in those days. (in fact, Fr Burke-Savage, the editor, asked that I used a nom de plume because “he didn't want all the nuns in Ireland to be wanting to get into the pages of Studies”. Shades of women's lib!). This was how I earned my first cheque for writing, and no later cheque ever made me feel so proud, (Strictly speaking my payment should have been the book, but Fr Gwynn purchased this for the Leeson St. house).

Another growing-edge of the mind happened when I'r Gwynn persuaded my superiors to allow me to go to Oxford and to the. British Museum in London, so that I could research by topic more thoroughly. Many of the writings. by Irishmen of the seventeenth century survive as very rare books, some indeed as single copies. The British Museum has some of them, others are in Oxford and Cambridge.

Father got quite a thrill out of sending me off on my Grand Tour, and he went to great pains to ensure that my visit would be a success. I went armed with letters of introduction to David Rogers of the British Museum, Fr. Basil Fitzgibbon of farm St.,and the library authorities in Oxford, He wrote beforehand to the Holy Child Sisters in Cherwell Edge, Oxford, where he knew some of the Sisters - his own sister had been a member of the congregation - and enjoyed their hospitality while I was in Oxford.

Of course, I fell in love with Oxford, as he intended me to, and he listened with happy amusement, as I shared my excitement with him on my return. This happened more than thirty years ago, in November December, 1950, yet it is still vivid in my memory. There was I, a young inexperienced person, given a welcome into the fellowship of scholars, and accepted as one of themselves. Ah, the daring and courage of youth!

Thinking back over all this, I believe I have hit on something very basic to. Fr. Gwynn's character, and very important: he helped people to grow. His own standards were high, and he helped others to live up to their highest potential, to a potential they weren't aware of until he pointed it out.

He was, too, a man of great patience and kindness. I'm sure a scholar of his calibre must have had to make many adjustments in trying to understand us young students. But his kindness bridged all distances. He had a genuine respect for others, and he paid: tribute to any gifts a person had, even if still in the bud!

It wasn't all an academic interchange. He had a puckish sense of humour, and those eyes could twinkle even over such daily dilemmas as “the problem of toast and butter: If I take more toast, I'll need another butter-roll, and if I take another butter-roll I'll need more toast to finish it!” At breakfast, one morning in our basement dining-room, I heard my gong ring upstairs. When I emerged at the top of the stairs, there was Fr. Gwynn, with a quizzical look on his face, saying: “How do you expect a fellow to eat his porridge without a spoon?” I had brought him in his breakfas. “You'd better stick to the History!”

Another time - I think it was when I was about to leave on my Oxbridge adventure - Fr Gwynn told me to kneel down for his blessing. Then, as I got up off my knees, he chuckled and told an anecdote about some Irish bishop, who was reputed to have said to his priests: “How did I get this cross on me belly? ... HARD WORRUK, YOUNG MEN, HARD WORRUK!” And he acted it out, standing tall and sticking out his chest.

He had a delightful sense of humour. I wish I could recall other incidents. I remember a letter he wrote shortly after he retired from UCD. He had been offered a chair of Philosophy (or History) in Milltown Park, he said, only to discover it was a sofa he had to share it with Fr. John Ryan!

It was while I was a student in Merrion Square that his father died. In fact, I answered his phone-call telling us the news. His father had been failing for some time - he lived to be a great age - and all the time Fr. Gwynn kept hoping that his father might be given the gift of faith before death. That did not happen I can recall the grief in his voice that morning over the phone. Later he described the funeral for us, saying how strange it felt to be an outsider at one's own father's funeral. As far as I remember, a dispensation had to be got from the Archbishop of Dublin, so that he could attend and, at the graveside, it was the Protestant Archbishop of Dublin who officiated and blessed the remains, while Stephen Gwynn's priest-son stood apart, on the fringe.

The faith; not given to his father, was very precious to him. In those years immediately after his retirement from UCD he got joy and great fulfilment from instructing some young. TCD students, converts to Catholicism. He referred to this in a number of letters written in those years.

It was in such things, and at such times, that the quality of his own spirituality shone through. It was never obtrusive. Yet, when he sensed that a person was anxious, or that obedience was hard, he knew how to say the right thing, or do just what was needed, tactfully, with gentleness and good hunour. He seemed to have a great, yet sensibly balanced, respect for obedience. But it was
his kindness and compassion, a compassion learned through his own suffering, that made him the person he was for others. There was always that the feeling that he too had been through it all.

He was a marvellous person to give anything to. He received as graciously as he gave, and never took a gift for granted. About two years ago I had a letter from him, thanking.me for the gift of a book on Philippine culture. Actually I hadn't been the person who sent it, but I had talked about him to someone who sent him the book as a result of our conversation - Fr. Miguel Bernad, SJ.

During all my years in the Philippines we corresponded a few times each year. Then, while I was in Ireland, from 1970 to 1979 I met him many times, mostly in Milltown Park, but once in the University club. On that last occasion we walked across St. Stephen's Green together - just imagine that!

There were times, too, when I went over to Milltown Park, only to learn that Fr, Gwynn wasn't well and couldn't see visitors. Then I knew that my old friend was deep into one of his bouts of severe depression, and I suffered with him. That finely-honed, brilliant mind, and yet the dark shadow of depression that hung over him so often ...

The last time I saw him, before I left for the Philippines in 1980, he was in great form, and he took some mischievous delight in my reaction to his beard. When I remarked that he looked the spit image of George Bernard Shaw, he said, “Sister Helen (he liked to call me by my old name), I would expect more originality from you!” Then he told me about all the other people who had made the same comparison, including a lorry-driver who had stopped beside him on the road and called out, “I thought Bernard Shaw was dead!” He was really enjoying his masquerade.

In his last letters to me, he told me about his latest and dearest research, the paper he was requested to write for the Royal Irish Academy, on the Mass in Ireland in the early Middle Ages. Much of it was based on a missal that had come to light in recent times. (Am I right?) He spoke of this paper with warmth and enthusiasm, as being the culmination of his life-work. I do hope that his failing eye-sight allowed him to finish this work, so dear to his heart.

I marvel at the courage of this man who, even at the age of ninety, was still using to the full those rare gifts God had given him, and sharing with us the fruits of his long years of reflection and study. I do not know now he died. I hope that his mental faculties were as sharp as ever. It would be poignantly sad if such a brilliant mind were dulled.

I thank God for the gift of this most dear friend, and for all that he has been to all the Columban Sisters.: His death is a personal loss for me. I miss him very deeply.

Heelan, Patrick A, 1926-2015, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/766
  • Person
  • 17 March 1926-01 February 2015

Born: 17 March 1926, Dun Laoghaire, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1942, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1958, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1961, Fordham University, The Bronx, New York, USA
Died: 01 February 2015, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the Milltown Park community, Dublin at the time of death.

by 1950 at St Louis University MO, USA (MIS) studying geophysics
by 1960 at Münster, Germany (GER I) making Tertianship
by 1962 at Franklin Park NJ, USA (MAR) studying at Princeton
by 1963 at Leuven, Belgium (BEL S) studying
by 1966 at Fordham NY, USA (MAR) teaching

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/rip-fr-patrick-heelan-sj/

RIP: Fr Patrick Heelan SJ
Fr Patrick Heelan died in Cherryfield Lodge on 1 February. In one of the many entries online, he gives a succinct account of his life and work: I am a Jesuit priest, a theoretical physicist and a philosopher of science. I was born in Dublin in 1926, and studied theoretical physics, philosophy and theology in Ireland, Germany and the USA. I moved permanently to the USA in 1965. In my studies in theoretical physics I was fortunate in having been supervised by three Nobel Prize winners: Schroedinger in Dublin during the war, Wigener in Princeton and Heisenberg in Munich, all of whom were among the founders of quantum physics. I am grateful for having had such a wonderful life as a priest and a theoretical physicist.
Patrick learned his love of mathematics in Belvedere, and looked forward to becoming a Jesuit scientist. During his first spell in USA he won a doctorate in geophysics by devising mathematical formulae to enable seismographs to distinguish between natural earthquakes and seismic activity from nuclear explosions. What he called his first conversion was the experience of the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises, which remained a crucial resource for him through his life. In the course of a stellar academic career he worked in seven universities, as professor, researcher and administrator – he was Vice President in Stony Brook State University and then Provost in Georgetown University, before retiring, in an increasingly frail body, to Cherryfield in 2014. So this gentle priest of extraordinary intellectual gifts saw out his days close to his much loved family of in-laws, nieces and nephews.
In 2005 Patrick wrote a memoir which fills in the factual features of his life, structured round five conversion points. It is meaty but not easy reading, concerned as it is with quantum theory and the perception of space. Here are the five conversion points, each followed by its date and location:
The role of Ignatian discernment: 1951: Wisconsin Lonergan: transcendental method: 1957: Tullabeg Consciousness’ role in quantum physics: 1962: Princeton Van Gogh’s pictorial geometry: 1966 Fordham
Space perception and the philosophy of science: 1982: Stony Brook
These five stepping stones still omit much of Patrick’s range of interests. His seminal work on Van Gogh’s paintings reflected a broad and sharp-eyed knowledge of European art. He explored “Music as a basic metaphor and deep structure in Plato” in a paper that showed familiarity with studies of music’s origins and structures. At the end of his life he was deep into a serious study of Islam. A friend compared Patrick to a high Renaissance Florentine prince, a polymath at home in the full range of arts and sciences, illuminating wherever he cast his attention.
In the course of a stellar academic career he worked in seven universities, as professor, researcher and administrator – he was Vice President in Stony Brook State University and then Provost in Georgetown University, before retiring, in an increasingly frail body, to Cherryfield in 2014. So this gentle priest of extraordinary intellectual gifts saw out his days close to his much loved family of in-laws, nieces and nephews and his friends.

https://www.jesuit.ie/blog/pat-coyle/georgetown-salutes-fr-heelan/

Georgetown salutes Fr Heelan
in Pat Coyle

Fr Patrick Heelan SJ’s death has been well noted by Georgetown University, Washington, where he spent so many years and did so much good work as academic and as administrator. The current President, Dr. John J. DeGioia, has written to the university community as follows:
February 11, 2015
Dear Members of the Georgetown University Community:
It is with great sadness that I share with you that Rev. Patrick A. Heelan, S.J., a beloved Georgetown administrator, professor and member of our Jesuit community, passed away earlier this month.
Fr. Heelan came to our Georgetown community in 1992 as Executive Vice President for the Main Campus before becoming the William A. Gaston Professor of Philosophy in 1995. As an administrator, Fr. Heelan helped to guide our community through a difficult financial period with an unwavering dedication to our distinct values and a vision of long-term excellence. In his role, he oversaw changes to the structure of the administration and strategic investments in our community to better advance our mission and meet the needs of our growing student population. He was also deeply dedicated to our policies of need-blind admissions and our commitment to meeting full need in financial aid, seeing them as cornerstones of our University’s future success. Fr. Heelan’s leadership strengthened our community in so many ways and was integral to bringing us to where we are now.
In addition to his contributions as a leader, Fr. Heelan was a renowned physicist and a philosopher, whose extensive scholarship sat at a unique intersection of what he called “the hermeneutic philosophy of science”—or the study of how we make meaning from scientific observation. His scholarly research spanned disciplines, including theology, philosophy, psychology and physics. His many scholarly contributions included publications on spatial perception, quantum mechanics and human consciousness and drew upon the intellectual tradition of Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, and Bernard Lonergan.
After retiring from Georgetown in 2013, Fr. Heelan returned to his native Ireland for the duration of his life, where he passed away surrounded by loved ones earlier this month.
I was deeply saddened to learn of his passing, and I wish to offer my heartfelt condolences to the many faculty, staff, students, alumni and members of our Jesuit community who had the chance to work with him.
Should you wish to express your condolences, please direct notes to: Irish Jesuit Provincialate, Milltown Park, Sandford Road, Dublin 6, Ireland.
Please join me in expressing our deepest sympathy to the friends, family and many lives that were touched by Fr. Heelan’s kindness, leadership and good will.
Sincerely,
John J. DeGioia

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 159 : Spring 2015

Obituary

Fr Patrick (Paddy) Heelan (1926-2015)

17 March 1926: Born Dublin
Early education at Belvedere College SJ
7th September 1942: Entered Society at St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
8th September 1944: First Vows at St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
1944 - 1948: Rathfarnham - Studying Maths & Maths/Physics at UCD
1948 - 1949: Tullabeg - Studying Philosophy
1949 - 1952: St Louis, MO, USA - Studying for PhD in Geophysics at St Louis University
1952 - 1954: Tullabeg - Studying Philosophy; Research Associate at Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies
1954 - 1955: Clongowes - Regency: Teacher; Studying CWC Cert in Education
1955 - 1959: Milltown Park - Studying Theology
31st July 1958: Ordained at Gonzaga Chapel, Milltown Park, Dublin
1959 - 1960: Westphalia, Germany - Tertianship at Münster in Westphalia
1960 - 1961: Bronx, NY, USA - Fullbright Fellowship post Doctorate Studies in Physics at Fordham University
2nd February 1961 Final Vows at Fordham University, Bronx, NY, USA
1961 - 1962: St Augustine's Parish, Franklin Park, NJ, USA - Fullbright Fellowship post Doctorate Studies in Physics at Palmer Laboratory, Princeton University
1962 - 1964: Louvain, Belgium - Studying for PhD in Philosophy of Science at Catholic University of Louvain
1964 - 1965: Leeson St - Lecturer in Maths & Maths/Physics at UCD; Assistant Prefect University Hall; Research Associate at Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies
1965 - 1970: Bronx, NY, USA - Assistant Professor (later Associate Professor) of Philosophy at Fordham University
1968: Visiting Professor of Physics at Boston University
1970 - 1992: Stony Brook, NY, USA - Professor of Philosophy, Chair of Department of Philosophy, Dean of Arts and Sciences at State University of New York
1972: Acting Vice-President, Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences Dean of Arts & Sciences; Professor of Philosophy
1975: Vice President for Liberal Studies
1990: Dean of Humanites & Fine Arts
1992: Present Emeritus Professor
1992 - 2013: Washington, DC, USA - Executive Vice-President for Main Campus; Professor of Philosophy at Georgetown University
1995: William A Gaston Professor of Philosophy
2013 - 2015: Milltown Park - Prays for the Church and the Society at Cherryfield Lodge

Fr Patrick Heelan was admitted to Cherryfield Lodge in June 2013. He settled in well and was very content as a member of the Community. In recent months his condition deteriorated, and he died peacefully at Cherryfield Lodge on Sunday 1st February 2015. May he rest in the Peace of Christ

In 1958 Archbishop McQuaid laid hands on Patrick as he knelt in the Milltown Park chapel to receive the sacrament of ordination. It would be fair to say that we, his peers, revered Patrick (the long form will be used here, though he was Paddy to his peers; in USA, where he settled in 1965, he was unhappy with the overtones of Paddy). By the time of his ordination he was already a seasoned scholar, with a Master's in maths from UCD, a rigorous apprenticeship with Schroedinger in the Dublin Institute of Higher Studies, and a doctorate in geophysics from St Louis. Even at that stage he had already worked in two of the seven universities he was to join (UCD, St Louis, Louvain, Fordham, Princeton, Stony Brook, Georgetown).

What mattered more to him was what he called his first conversion, when he gained an insight into the role of discernment in Ignatian prayer. This was the practice of assessing, during a time of peace and recollection, the spiritual authenticity of one's thoughts, feelings and desires; a new level of self-awareness and interiority. It remained with Patrick as a resource through the ups and downs of his life.

You might think it was mostly ups. He routinely got first honours in exams (with one explosive exception when J.R. McMahon, then Rector and Professor of Canon Law in Milltown, awarded Patrick a Fail mark in Canon Law, with the aim, it was said, of giving him a useful experience of failure). God, on the other hand, was generous to young Patrick. He was born into a stable home in Dalkey, with an aloof father and a remarkable warm and gifted mother to whom he was always close. He had an older brother, a successful lawyer and financier, and Esther, who he said was all you could look for in a young sister.

Patrick himself was generously endowed, with a brilliant mind, and a healthy body. He was not athletic, but was never sick, never in hospital till old age. He was hugely responsive to beauty, whether in mathematics (”I liked maths because it was clear, logical, beautiful and unassailable”), in music, especially Bach and Mozart, in flowers and in visual art. He loved his friends, though in his early years he described himself as a selfish introvert. On top of that he had excellent schooling, first in Belvedere, and then with formidable third-level mentors. He sought God in the created world; his search focussed particularly on how we perceive that world, and give it meaning,

Patrick was quickly in demand for third-level posts, but as a Jesuit under obedience he experienced the limits to his freedom. He was at first dismayed when he was commissioned to spend his travelling studentship in geophysics rather than his beloved maths. He was being used; superiors fingered him for the management of the worldwide network of Jesuit seismographs. The US army used and surreptitiously funded him to find a way of distinguishing natural earthquakes from nuclear explosions. The Russians translated his doctoral thesis for the same reason, and claimed the pirated version as a triumph for the Leningrad Acoustical Institution. The Archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid, sought his services to teach neo-scholastic philosophy to seminarians.

So Patrick was used by the Jesuits, the Pentagon, Russian scientists, the Archbishop of Dublin, and no doubt several others. In face of this he became not angry but wise. Without losing his joie de vivre he recognised and welcomed the down-sizing of his ego. A written comment from his later years suggests his use of discernment in his development: "I came to experience my life in the Jesuit order, not as a career to be established, but as a story always under editorial revision and reconstruction, continuously discontinuous, yet with persistent Catholic and catholic threads and an interiority that tended to be affirmative and to bring, as was promised in the gospels, rest to my soul.”

In three issues of Interfuse in 2005-6, Patrick wrote Le petit philosophe, a 3-part memoir which fills in the factual features of his life, structured round five conversion points. It is meaty but not easy reading, concerned as it is with quantum theory and the perception of space. Here are his five conversion points, each followed by its date and location:

  1. The role of Ignatian discernment: 1951: Wisconsin
  2. Lonergan: transcendental method: 1957: Tullabeg
  3. Consciousness' role in quantum physics: 1962: Princeton
  4. Van Gogh's pictorial geometry: 1966: Fordham
  5. Space perception and the philosophy of science: 1982: Stony Brook

These five stepping stones still omit much of Patrick's range of interests. His seminal work on Van Gogh's paintings reflected a wide and sharp-eyed knowledge of European art. He explored “Music as a basic metaphor and deep structure in Plato” in a paper that showed familiarity with studies of music's origins and structures. At the end of his life he was deep into a serious study of Islam. A friend compared Patrick to a high Renaissance Florentine prince, a polymath at home in the full range of arts and sciences, illuminating whatever he gave attention to.

In the course of a stellar academic career he worked in seven universities, as professor, researcher and administrator – he was Vice President in Stony Brook State University and then Provost in Georgetown University. He lived through the inevitable power struggles of academic life, especially in Georgetown, where he worked hard at the reform of structures.

In 2014 he retired, in an increasingly frail body, to Cherryfield. So this gentle priest of extraordinary intellectual gifts saw out his days close to his much-loved family of in-laws, nieces and nephews. He was 88 years of age, and in his 73rd year as a Jesuit. He wrote of himself: “In my studies in theoretical physics I was fortunate in having been supervised by three Nobel Prize winners: Schroedinger in Dublin during the war, Wigener in Princeton and Heisenberg in Munich, all of whom were among the founders of quantum physics. I am grateful for having had such a wonderful life as a priest and a theoretical physicist”.

Paul Andrews

Interfuse No 114 : Summer 2002

60 YEARS IN THE SOCIETY OF JESUS

Patrick Heelan

A homily delivered by Patrick Heelan, on September 7, 2002, in St. Ignatius Chapel of Holy Trinity Church, Georgetown.

At the age of 11, I was enrolled as a student in Belvedere College in Dublin, Ireland. It was my first encounter with the Jesuits. Not many years before, another fellow Dubliner, James Joyce, had a similar encounter with the Jesuits at roughly the same age at Clongowes Wood College, the Jesuit boarding school. He later moved to Belvedere College, my school. Even at that early age Joyce was a sophisticated observer of the Jesuits. In his Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man, Joyce tells of his early encounter. Under the name of Stephen Daedelus, he recounts his reverie during a Latin class taught by Fr. Arnall, SJ. Fr. Arnall had been angry, “in a wax”, as he says, because the whole class had missed the declension of the word “mare”, the Latin word for “sea”. I will quote this piece because the narrator could easily have been me when I first encountered the Jesuits; it began with a reflection on Fr. Arnall's being “in a wax”.

“Was that a sin for Fr. Arnall to be in a wax? Or was he allowed to get into a wax when the boys were idle because that made them study better? Or was he only letting on to be in a wax? It was because he was allowed, because a priest would know what a sin was and would not do it ... hmm! BUT if he did it one time by mistake, what would he do to go to confession? Perhaps, he would go to confession to the Fr. Minister of the Jesuit community. And if the minister did it, he would go to the rector: the rector to the provincial: and the provincial to the general of the Jesuits. That was called the order ... hmm! He had heard his father say that they were all clever men. They could all become high up people in the world if they had not become Jesuits. And he wondered what Fr. Arnall and Paddy Barrett would have become, and what Mr. McGlade and Mr. Gleeson would have become, if they had not become Jesuits (Mr. McGlade and Mr. Gleeson were scholastics at the time; I knew Fr. McGlade as a priest and a great teacher.) It was hard to think WHAT, because you would have to think of them in a different way with different coloured coats and trousers and with beards and moustaches and different kinds of hats”. (p. 48)

There was already a sophisticated awareness, even in the eleven-year old, of the reality of sin and confession, and of what the Oxford English Dictionary calls “jesuitry'; also he knows of the high regard people had for the worldly abilities of Jesuits - but notes that the clerical uniform was an obstacle to the imagination. If only they dressed “in different coloured coats and trousers, wearing beards and moustaches”. There was a certain prophetic character to this last phrase - Jesuits today often dress “in coloured coats and trousers and wearing beards and moustaches”, but no one these days wears hats, not even priests!

At the end of his schooling in Belvedere, Joyce was invited to join the Jesuits, but he turned it down because he felt, mistakenly, I think, that the Jesuits frowned on the Eros of beauty -- but Stephen admitted that in his case the Eros of beauty had led him astray from the path of – well! - let us say good Jesuit behaviour. However, as for me, I did not have these challenges or reservations, but knowing something of the history of Jesuit accomplishments in natural science, I accepted the invitation, for I wanted to be a Jesuit scientist. Sixty years ago to a day, on September 7, 1942, I entered the Jesuit Novitiate at a Paladian Villa once owned by the Earls of Portarlington, then called St. Mary's, Emo, Co. Leix, to become, as I then thought and hoped, a Jesuit scientist.

Let me now draw down the spiritual lesson from the gospel reading (In. ch. 9). In the gospel story the blind man was changed by bathing in the waters of Siloam, but at first this only gave worldly sight to his eyes; he came to see only the world around, a splendid sight to see as he saw it for the first time in his life, a world of different people in their various coloured costumes. What did he think of Jesus, his benefactor? The great scholar Raymond Brown says he probably thought of him as just an ordinary miracle worker - not that being an ordinary miracle worker was a small thing. But it took events – like challenges from the Pharisees, parents, and bystanders – to make him see the spiritual realities underlying the opening of his eyes. Only when his spiritual eyes were opened did he come to recognize Jesus as God's presence in the world as a fully human person.

The theme of my homily then is that I am the blind man; I was washed in the waters of baptism; at first, like the blind man, I too only saw the business aspects of the world. Like the blind man, I came to see the spiritual context of human life and labour only by being challenged by events in the world and by its institutions. Reflecting on the other anniversary that we memorialize at this time, I recall that this is one of the frightening lessons of 9-11!

Returning, however, to my own story: the Jesuit part of my training was not easy; it consisted in adopting a certain kind of askesis, or spiritual practice, founded upon the Exercises of the founder, St. Ignatius. This was fundamental to the Jesuit life. I'll come back to this later. And then came science.

My scientific career began well at University College, Dublin, and at the School of Theoretical Physics of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies. During World War II, this latter was a haven for refugee European scientists from Germany and Central Europe. I studied there under Erwin Schrödinger, one of the founders of the quantum theory, and John Synge, a famous cosmologist. Later I was to study quantum field theory and elementary particles under Eugene Wigner at Princeton, and came to know and correspond with Werner Heisenberg of the Uncertainty Principle fame. In 1964 I wrote a book about Heisenberg, which was accepted as a doctoral dissertation in philosophy at the University of Leuven.

But my first Jesuit assignment in 1949 was to study earth science, particularly seismology. As it turned out, my pursuit of a scientific career was terminated when I was told to move from earth science and physics to philosophy. You must understand that the context of decision making within every Jesuit life includes both worldly and religious dimensions. The story of a Jesuit's life is always a dialogue with the world around, a kind of spiritual “reading' of the worldly environment, called the “spirit of discernment,' within the context of that practiced way of life characteristic of the founder, St. Ignatius. Like the great spiritual practices of old such as Stoicism and Epicureanism, Christian spiritual practices, like the Jesuit practices, were the practices of a certain philosophical way of life - the human side – that linked up with the primacy of Christian faith -- the religious side.

The Jesuits are an institution that from the time of its founder, took on the world, teaching both worldly and sacred knowledge or more accurately, they adopted ways of living that are both in the world, worldly, while being spiritually attuned according to the practices of the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises. Some may find this paradoxical. Monks live in closed monasteries and behind high garden walls all the time; they have little or no contact with the world. Religious orders older than the Jesuits, such as the Dominicans and the Franciscans, live in tight supervised communities and sally forth only to meet the world for pre-planned sessions of preaching, prayer, or charitable work The Jesuits' special mission, however, has been to promote worldly and spiritual life together, not separately. That is a complex, difficult, and paradoxical project. Like all spiritual projects, however, this is a deeply human social project but also marked by personal and social decision making requiring a special spiritual training, or askesis. This is the charism of the Jesuit way of life, of living in the Company, or Society, of Jesus.

To return to my own story: I was assigned to become a Jesuit scientist, like so many other Jesuit scientists of the past. But it did not work out the way it was originally conceived. My first assignment was to work with the great Jesuit seismologist, Fr. Macelwane at St. Louis University, with the intention possibly of taking charge of the great worldwide Jesuit network of earth science observatories established at Jesuit schools everywhere and linked globally. This was a unique network of its kind and had been in existence for over a hundred years. But in 1954, two years after my doctorate in geophysics, the U.S. Government put billions of dollars into the International Geophysical Year. This moved the earth sciences far beyond where they were. It was done mostly for military purposes to monitor underground nuclear test activity and to track underwater nuclear powered naval craft in the great oceans of the world, and much of the new research was top secret. In a short time, the Jesuit global seismological network became redundant and as a consequence there was no longer any need within the Jesuit Order for experts in this field. I then entered the field of high energy physics at Princeton University under the mentorship of Eugene Wigner, one of the original founders of the quantum theory. But this, too, was soon interrupted, when the Faculty of Philosophy at University College, Dublin, requested that I be assigned to teach the philosophy of science. This required further training, which took me to the University of Leuven, Belgium, where I finished a book on Werner Heisenberg's physical philosophy.

And so, at the age of 38, I began my first serious teaching job. This was in the physics department at University College, Dublin, as professor of relativistic cosmology, waiting for an appointment to philosophy. There followed my one and only - and most satisfying - job teaching science! But in the middle of my first year, I received an invitation from Fordham University in New York, to go there to teach my new specialty, the philosophy of science. I then began in 1965 a new career in the philosophy of science.

But further challenges were to follow. Five years later, the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook, was given the mission to become a great research university, to become, as it was then said, an 'instant Berkeley. Out of the blue, it invited me to become chair of the philosophy department, and to begin a doctoral degree program in philosophy. In a few years, Stony Brook became the leader in continental philosophy in the US with vast public funding and with the full backing of the administration. A few years after the successful establishment of that program, I was invited to become Vice President and Dean of Arts and Sciences at Stony Brook. After the establishment of the Staller Fine Arts Centre, I was recalled to administration as Dean of Humanities and Fine Arts. I spent 22 years in all at Stony Brook. Then in 1992, on the invitation of Fr Leo O'Donovan, then President of Georgetown University, I left secular public higher education and re-entered the domain of private Catholic and Jesuit higher education, as the person responsible for the Main Campus of Georgetown University.

You might want to know how I experienced secular higher education in a top research public university. In retrospect, I have to say that I found extraordinary respect for one who was, oddly, both a priest and a Jesuit. Of course, being also a card carrying scientist did help a lot. Catholic friends in higher education have since said to me: 'You must have horror stories to tell about the secular values of public education. Not really! Academic life in both the public universities and the Catholic universities is much the same - commitments to social justice, public responsibility, and “What's new!” are not much different in the practical order. The big difference is in the limitations of public discourse and the public practices of life. Religious language and ritual are absent; motivations are expressed in terms of human rights, professional ethics, and other secular humanistic doctrines - or without further definition, the pursuit of excellence! My frustration was mitigated by the discovery that many of the values we know as Christian values have by now migrated beyond the Church, they are no longer challenged but taken for granted as due to humanity and human society. I asked: How did this come about? I think the reason is that universities grew up under the Christian umbrella before they came to shelter themselves under the shadow of the state, and they carried much of the Christian tradition with them.

I often found beneath the surface a hidden quasi-religious commitment clothed in secular and human rhetoric. I came to feel sure that Jesus would not condemn these people. Many, both Jewish and agnostic, were like Nicodemus, or like the blind man emerging from the pool of Siloam, they shared the vision of Jesus, but they had not been challenged in such a way as to recognize the divine presence that he represents in the world.

My years at Georgetown University have also been a challenge and a gift. I am so happy that we celebrate religious rituals, and that religious motivations and spirituality can be spoken of, and are needed and heeded by many students and faculty without interfering with the usual and expected academic standards of the disciplines. It is so comforting to be in a community where the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius are known and used to promote a way of life that gives spiritual sight to the business of the world. Since the time of Stephen Daedelus and of my youth, changes have taken place: Jesuit priests now go round in different coloured coats and trousers, [even some with beards and moustaches.' And in doing so they are affirming a world vibrant - Yes! - with divine life....

Interfuse No 125 : Autumn 2005

PATRICK HEELAN : “LE PETIT PHILOSOPHE” (1)

Patrick A Heelan

‘Le petit philosophe’
My family tells me – usually with good humored teasing -- that, when I was baptized, my godfather, a lawyer and a philosopher of sorts, looked at me in the cradle bemused, and said, “Le petit philosophe!” Recalling who the “philosophes” were, it could have been an ironic comment on the promises just made on my behalf but, if it was intended as a prophetic statement, this is where my “evangelium” should begin!

When I was young, I lived with my family in a pretty seaside town, Dalkey, on the South side of Dublin – once the home of George Bernard Shaw and today of U2's Bono. It was then about one and a half hours commute by bus or train to and from my Jesuit high school, Belvedere College, on the North side of the River Liffey. Consequently, neither before nor after school did I have the companionship of other Belvederians, nor indeed much other young companionship. As the second son, I was eclipsed by my brother, Louis, who seemed to have a large circle of friends and colleagues, boys and girls, which I did not have. I enjoyed reading, mathematics, music, home carpentry, and the company of my mother. She had come from Antwerp, Belgium as a young girl during the first World War, to study English and accountancy, and she stayed in Dublin after the war, met my father in Dalkey and married him. I had a younger sister – still living - and an older brother - now gone. My sister was a good junior partner. She tried hard to keep up with her brothers but sadly she was derided for being a girl! She was the first among us, however, to become a doctor, a real M.D. She married a dentist, and devoted her life to raising a large family and serving on Catholic medical boards. My brother became a cautious lawyer; also raised a large family; worked in venture capital investment, including the film industry; and was a lifelong active member of the St. Vincent de Paul Society for helping the indigent. My father was a senior civil servant, an economist, fluent in French and German, aloof, given to three hobbies - rose gardening, musical composition and, after retiring, the translation of theological works from the German - even some from Karl Rahner, S.J. I was an introverted and selfish kid.

At Belvedere, I had good math teachers. I liked math because it was clear, logical, beautiful, and unassailable, and, as I thought, did not require company. Mathematical physics seemed to me to be the true model of all authentic knowledge of the world. My attitude towards the world was abstract and aloofly contemplative. This attitude was only to be confirmed by my scientific, philosophical, and theological education in the Jesuit Order - until wisdom made its entrance.

Reflection:
What follows is the story of several conversions, each connected with unplanned zigs or zags, contingent events from which, by divine grace - for how else explain it? -- an intelligible narrative emerged that was accompanied by - or eventually brought - wonder and joy, as well as “rest to my soul.' The frustrations along the way were met with unexpected gifts of help, from people, some living and some now dead, too numerous to name. Some will be mentioned in the following narrative. Among them is St. Ignatius Loyola whose Spiritual Exercises were indispensable; Bernard Lonergan, S.J., whom I had the privilege of knowing personally though only in a small way, whose books, Insight and Method in Theology found their way to me at crucial moments of transition. With the help of them and many others on the way, I came to experience my life in the Jesuit order, not as a career to be established, but as a story always under editorial revision and reconstruction, continuously discontinuous, yet with persistent Catholic and catholic threads and an interiority that tended to be affirmative and to bring, as was promised in the gospels, rest to my soul.

UCD and the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies (1944-48)
Now for some particulars! In 1942, at the age of 16, I joined the Jesuits, directly from high school. I knew that I was joining a society that respected science and mathematics, and looked forward to a possible Jesuit career in the sciences. Spiritually, I was no more than a cultural Irish Catholic who felt comfortable with the way of life of the Jesuits he knew. An eventual career in the sciences seemed to be confirmed by my early university studies as a Jesuit in mathematics and mathematical physics (BA, 1947; MA, 1948, all with first-class honors) at University College, Dublin (UCD). In 1948 I was awarded a fellowship in Mathematical Physics to study for a doctorate wherever in the world I could find a perch.

The years of my mathematical studies in Ireland coincided with the chaotic post-war years in Europe during which the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies offered hospitality to many émigré European scientists. I was privileged then to be able to attend seminars given by very eminent theoretical physicists at its School of Theoretical Physics in Dublin. Among those resident there at the time were Erwin Schrödinger and John Synge, both mathematicians famous for their work in General Relativity and Cosmology. Relativistic Cosmology explained gravitation as due to curvatures of four-dimensional space-time related to the presence of physical masses in space time; these warp the geometry in ways not compatible with Euclidean geometry. But as a classical theory, it is clear, logical, elegant, deductive, and mathematically unassailable. These descriptors also fitted Schrödinger's own teaching, the elegance of his style, and what he expected of others. It set the tone for his students among whom I was happy to be counted.

The Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies with its School of Theoretical Physics was founded by Eamon de Valera, the Prime Minister of Ireland during those years, who was a mathematician. I remember being told, when I was small, that only seven people in the world understood Einstein's Theory of Relativity and that de Valera was one of them. Wanting to belong to this small group, I took courses with Schrödinger and Synge. From Schrödinger I came to understand that the General Theory of Relativity did not support the 'relativism' of truth; to the contrary, it was founded on constancy, invariance, and symmetry, as befitted the rational design of Him whom Einstein called the “Old One”. Einstein's motto was, “Der Herrgott würfelt nicht' - God does not throw dice!” It was carved above the fireplace of his office in the old Palmer Laboratory of Princeton. It was Einstein's challenge to Heisenberg and to quantum mechanics. At this time, I felt I was with Einstein.
One class episode with Schrödinger opened my mind to a new way of thinking about human consciousness. He spoke about the foundations of mathematics and cosmology in the intuition of non-Euclidean geometrical spaces. Since the dominant scientific and philosophical view before Einstein was that real Space as intuited by our imagination was necessarily Euclidean, a fundamental principle of both mind and body had been breached and needed to be re-studied at all levels of relevance.

Reflection:
The notion that cosmology forced us to imagine curved three- and four-dimensional spaces that can be both finite in size and yet have no boundaries grabbed me in a profound way and gave me a new concern, with consciousness and its role in psychology, physics, philosophy, and spirituality.

In 1948, my final year at UCD, I won a prestigious Fellowship (called a Travelling Studentship) that paid for doctoral studies abroad anywhere in the world. I was sent to pursue doctoral studies at St. Louis University as a junior Jesuit scholastic. My provincial wanted me to study geophysics and seismology. Why seismology? And why at St. Louis? In the late 1940's, the Vatican Observatory managed several scientific research programs besides astronomy. Among them was an international network of seismological stations not just at Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin, but at Jesuit colleges around the world. The Director of the Vatican Observatory in 1948 was Father Daniel O'Connell, SJ an Irish Jeşuit. He spoke to my Provincial and, much to my chagrin, requested that I be sent to study geophysical seismology at St. Louis University, a Jesuit university that had a special Institute of Geophysics.

The Director at that time of the Institute of Geophysics at St Louis University was Father James Macelwane, SJ, a scientist of considerable fame. He worked closely with the oil exploration industry and the Pentagon. Under his direction, my assigned research project: was to find a means of telling from seismic records whether a seismic disturbance was of artificial or natural origin. This involved finding a correlation between the seismological signatures of underground disturbances and their source. Being, like Schrödinger, a mathematical physicist, and not at all an experimental physicist, I transformed the practical problem into a mathematical one. I studied no records, but instead, using simplified assumptions, I looked for solutions of the elastic wave equations that seemed to define the problem. My research was supported by the US military though I did not know this until much later, for its real purpose was to find the seismic key to monitoring underground nuclear tests (for a retrospect, see, Broad, W. New York Times, 2005). In response to the great success of Soviet science with the launching of Sputnik, the first artificial earth satellite, in 1957, Russian scientific papers began to be translated into English. To my great surprise a copy of my doctoral papers appeared in 1961 – as translated from the Russian complete with the identical mathematical typos that appeared in my papers - seemingly attributed to the Leningrad Acoustical Institute. Following the major U.S. Federal government investment in geophysics during the International Geophysical Year (1957-58), the Jesuit Seismological Network folded, and there was no longer a potential job in seismology for me with the Jesuits.

Conversion #1: Insight into “discernment” in Ignatian prayer
My first breach with the orientation towards mathematics as the preferred instrument of reason occurred while making the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises with other scholastics, I think in the sutnmner of 1951, in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin. The retreat master was Father Charles Hertzog, SJ. For the first time, I had insight into the role of 'discernment in Ignatian prayer. I had made many retreats before this, but the meaning of discernment had escaped me. This is the practice of assessing, during a time of peace and recollection, the spiritual authenticity of one's interior thoughts, feelings, and desires, as they emerged into consciousness against the background of faith in and love for the crucified and risen Jesus. I don't any longer recall how spiritual discernment was presented by Fr. Hertzog, but the impact on me at that time was certainly due to his expositions and my deep need for something of that kind. It breached a barrier in my consciousness that brought about a 'conversion' event. After that time, I began to notice and take seriously how people and events came to me. They came differently from before now they seemed to carry messages for concem, invitations to new tasks, either as providers of peace and consolation, or as warnings against involvement, and so on. This brought about a new level of self-awareness and interiority that challenged the anonymous, often self-serving habits, practices, and conventions of the unconscious self. I was not yet curious about the cultural origins of that unconscious self, but a route was opened that had not been there before.

I returned to Ireland in 1952. My science studies had to be put aside for eight years. I spent two years in philosophy, one in regency teaching, four in theology- my ordination was at the end of my third year in 1958 - then after theology there was Tertianship, a final spiritual and pastoral year (1959-60) that I spent in Münster, Germany. My studies in philosophy were done at the Jesuit School of Philosophy, in the farming community of Tullamore, Ireland. My theological studies were done at the Jesuit School of Theology, Milltown Park, in a suburb of Dublin. Jesuit seminary philosophy made little mark on me; it did not have the clarity, elegance, and explanatory function - nor even the empirical outlook – that I was used to in science, and it seemed to me also at the time that its insights were anonymous and lacked the joyful and sublime moments that might have saved it from irrelevance. There was one notable exception, the course on sacred scripture at Milltown Park, which introduced us to the historical, archaeological, and literary studies of biblical texts.

In the middle of my theological studies, I was summoned to the Provincial's office nearby, and was told that the Archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid, wanted me to be assigned to teach philosophy at UCD. The Faculty of Philosophy at that time served almost exclusively the seminarians of the Archdiocese. But there was agitation from a group of lay students to open the philosophy curriculum to modern topics such as the philosophy of science. The Dean and Professors of the Faculty, all priests of the Dublin Archdiocese, persuaded the Archbishop of the need to make this possible. I, however, had no knowledge of this situation and was at a loss to know how I came to be chosen for this job. I was shocked at the Archbishop's proposal and my consideration of it gave me no joy. Aware that the Archbishop was not a patient listener to contrary advice, I, nevertheless, dared, like Job in the Old Testament, to argue with the Almighty! I represented that I was not competent to teach the philosophy of science because I found little joy in the subject and because my scientific training was badly in need of an upgrade for such a task after so many years away from science. The Archbishop's reply came to me from my Provincial: “Tell Patrick Heelan to read a good book!” He made no suggestion, however, as to what book I should read.

Conversion #2: Lonergan's transcendental method of Insight
As it happened, Bernard Lonergan's Insight, was published in the summer of 1957. It hooked my interest from the start, perhaps because it began with mathematical examples. I found it exciting, and it gave me great joy. I found it intensely illuminating with respect to philosophical method. It seemed to me to describe correctly the role of intuition in mathematics as well as the role of experience in concept and theory formation. It gave me notions, such as transcendental method, intentionality, assessment, interiority, empirical residue, that expanded my mind with pleasurable excitement. After finishing the book, I lent my copy to Fr Eamonn Egan, a brilliant young Jesuit who professed philosophy. He read it through, from cover to cover - and, it is said, that he neither ate nor slept during that time and was found lying on the floor of his room exhausted, three days later. Others at Milltown Park also read Insight and their excitement led to the formation of a Lonergan caucus or “fan club” at Milltown Park that has continued to the present day, The Archbishop was right, I needed a good book ... and the good book had found me!

Course notes on De Methodo Theologiae (in Latin) were also being passed around from courses Lonergan gave at the Gregorian University in Rome. They were early versions of what later became his Method in Theology, which appeared in 1972. I also noted the coherence between Ignatian discernment and Lonergan's notions of interiority and authenticity. That summer I had my second “conversion” - to a better understanding of the kind of human cooperation that divine grace needed when working for the Kingdom of God in today's scientific culture.

Lonergan's approach to philosophy was his discovery in Aquinas of an account of human knowing that was based on the recognition of (what is called today) transcendental method. A transcendental process is one that affects all human processes, 'transcendental' being the Kantian term for “a priori, universal, and necessary”. Lonergan's transcendental method went beyond Kant and described a sequence of four functions (processes) that operate sequentially and recursively in the process of all human inquiry. They are: 1. experiencing, 2. understanding, 3, judging, and 4. decision-making. The four functions operate on experiencing and from this draw their objective content. Their actions are recursively used again and again to review, revise, update, confirm or drop. This recursive use is called hermeneutical since each use shapes some aspect of meaning: the first produces perceptual meanings (related to descriptive concepts); the second produces theoretical meanings (related to networks of mutually related phenomena); the third, produces judgments of truth/falsity (after evidence is assessed), and the fourth and final phase produces practical action (related to human values and sensibility). A cycle of the four functions is called a transcendental hermeneutical circle (or spiral).

This new way of thinking changed the emphasis of my thinking from the mathematical to the practical, from the world as object to the interiority of the inquiring subject's engagement with the world, and from formal language to descriptive language. I began to see these recursive interior processes as the source of all human and cultural development in historical time and the natural sciences as the domain in which the embodied character of transcendental hermeneutical method is most clearly to be seen.

This new start in philosophy convinced me all the more that I needed to update my physics and learn more philosophy. So I applied for a Fulbright Fellowship to Princeton University to do post-doc work in quantum field theory. My application was accepted. Much to the chagrin of the Archbishop, however, I requested that my two years in the United States be followed by two years at the University of Leuven (Louvain), Belgium, to study the philosophy of science. I believed I could with luck finish a doctorate there in two years.

Conversion #3: Role of Consciousness in Quantum Physics
After a few months of preparatory work at Fordham University, I went on to Princeton arriving there around Christmas, 1960. My experience at Princeton was, indeed, mind blowing. The Princeton physics department at that time was probably the best physics department in the world! I worked with Professor Eugene Wigner, a Nobel Laureate and one of the founders of the quantum theory, and Fr Matsuo Yanase, SJ, a Japanese Jesuit physicist who was soon to become the President of Sophia University, Tokyo. Wigner was Hungarian, Jewish by birth and Lutheran by faith. He had been trained in chemical engineering at the Technische Hochschule in Berlin. He had a very keen sense of both the empirical and the technological side of science. Ironically, Wigner occupied Einstein's old office in the Palmer Lab with the famous inscription I already mentioned. I soon switched my allegiance from Einstein to Heisenberg, and from General Relativity to Quantum Theory.

Einstein loved the objective order of geometry where everything had its determinate time and place. This is characteristic of classical physics - roughly all physics with the exception of quantum physics - where it is assumed that theoretical terms in physics exist and have determinate properties independently of any engagement with human culture, with observers or their instruments. Classical objects are thought to be, using Lonergan's phrase, 'already out there now real,' that is, present beyond human culture and history and in principle independent of human filters. Such a view tends to see the world entirely in material terms. Wigner's view was that the only evidence we can rely on is given in experience. Experience, however, involves contingency and risk, for what is observed is observed through many human bodily, instrumental, and linguistic filters. None of these filters can sift incoming signals with infinite precision and, as the quantum theory predicted, some of these filters are mutually incompatible. The question that most quantum physicists and philosophers of science found troubling is the epistemological one: What CAN a physicist know absolutely about the real world? - which is probably unanswerable. Wigner, however, changed the basic question to an ontological one (Wigner 1967, 171-184): What IS knowing in quantum physics? This was the same move that Kant, Lonergan, Husserl, and Heidegger had made. Wigner in an interview towards the end of his life said: “My chief scientific interest in the last 20 years has been to somehow extend theoretical physics into the realm of consciousness consciousness is beautifully complex. It has never been properly described, certainly not by physics or mathematics”. (Szanton 1992, p. 309).

At the end of my Fulbright Fellowship in the Fall of 1962, I went directly to Leuven, to begin my doctoral work in the philosophy of science. It was natural then for me to focus my research on the problem of objectivity in Heisenberg's quantum mechanics and the role of consciousness in measurement.

Leuven (1962-4) and Quantum Mechanics and Objectivity (65)
I arrived at the Catholic University of Leuven (Belgium) in September, 1962, to begin work towards a PhD in the philosophy of science. There was no philosophical program there in the field of the natural sciences, but only in logic and the social psychological sciences. The Institut Supérieur de Philosophie was, however, the home of the Edmund Husserl Archives, brought there by Fr HL Van Breda, OFM, a Franciscan priest, who in 1939 with great personal risk had saved Husserl's papers from confiscation and destruction by the Nazi regime in Germany. My mentor was Professor Jean Ladrière, a brilliant and most beloved logician and mathematician, whose interests included Husserl and the social sciences. During this time, I studied the principal published writings of Husserl. Husserl was a trained mathematician. From 1901 to 1916, he taught philosophy at the University of Göttingen in what was then called the Faculty of Philosophy, which included Natural Philosophy. Among its faculty were also the mathematicians and physicists who were responsible for the early 20th century revolution that committed mathematics to the service of physics. Aquinas, Kant, Lonergan, Husserl, and Martin Heidegger, provided the resources I used to study the philosophical questions I brought from Wigner's Princeton. I read all of Heisenberg's published papers up to the time of my writing, visited with him several times at the Max-Planck Institute for Physics and Astrophysics in Munich, and discussed with him what I found unclear in his presentations. I found him most cordial and open, and our relationship continued after I left Leuven until his death in 1976. I defended my dissertation in 1964 and received the grade of félications du jury, 'which is the highest honors. I was told by my good friend and Heidegger counsellor, Fr. Bill Richardson, S.J., of Boston College, that it was an invitation to prepare for a faculty appointment at Leuven.

My dissertation was published under the title: Quantum Mechanics and Objectivity: A Study of the Physical Philosophy of Werner Heisenberg (The Hague: Nijhoff, 1965). I will refer to it below as QMO. Of QMO, Heisenberg wrote in the personal letter to me (dated November 10, 1970): “I very much enjoyed reading your book. Precisely the connection between a description of the historical development and a very careful philosophical analysis seems to me to be a felicitous foundation for the reader being able to really penetrate into quantum theory and its philosophy”.

QMO has been widely read and, until recently, was part of the history of science curriculum at Oxford. Some years ago, I was happy to learn that parts of it were being read at the elite Dalton School in New York City in a seminar for the best and brightest among New York high school seniors.

The thesis of the book sustains Wigner's point that there is in quantum physics the emergence of a distinctively new and explicit role for subjectivity at the moment when a datum observation is made. By 'new', I mean 'absent from classical physics. By 'explicit,' I refer to a conscious discrimination between two types of discourse, 1) theoretical (model) discourse and 2) empirical (fact) discourse. Facts occur only in appropriate practical horizonal situations. By horizon/horizona! I mean the practical situatedness of an event - here, a measurement event in a laboratory environment. The principal (but not exclusive) function of a horizon is to specify the space/time and momentum/energy variables. In classical physics, all such horizons are assumed to be mutually compatible. This compatibility breaks down in quantum physics, where cross-correlations exist between data taken in different complementary horizons, for example, the space/time horizon and the momentum/energy horizon are 'complementary. The choice of horizon is controlled by a free decision of the measuring subject. Wigner took this dependence of 'what is factual' on 'what humans have chosen to measure to be evidence of the presence of a human interpretative (and cognitive) role inside the new physics that is absent from classical physics. He saw this as evidence for the existence of an immaterial factor within human consciousness that plays a role in the practice of the new physics.

Reflection:
Much of my later work was inspired by Wigner's problem and the desire to understand it better. In doing so, I read deeply about the biological, historical, and cultural origins of the four functions that in Lonergan's account, constitute the transcendental core of human conscious living. I asked: How did they come to be structured the way we find them today? and How do they operate within the contexts of history, culture, and religion? In the light of Wigner's view that quantum physics implies a role for human consciousness, I began to think that it might be possible to describe the individual embodied human being as a Quantum MacroSystem (CMS).

Return to the USA (1965)
I returned to Ireland from Leuven in the mid-summer of 1964, ready to teach the philosophy of science at UCD in the Fall of that year. Earlier that year I had received some telephone calls from Ireland telling me that there was a crisis brewing about what I would teach in the Fall, but the cause of the crisis was not mentioned. Arriving back in Dublin, I found that I was not listed among the Faculty of Philosophy, but among the faculty of the Department of Mathematical Physics, assigned to teach the graduate course in General Relativistic Cosmology. It was some time before I learned what had been going on in the last few feverish months while I was completing and defending my philosophy dissertation. I was told that the Jesuit professors at UCD had voted – no doubt with others - to give the Chair of Medieval History to someone other than the Archbishop's candidate for that position. The Archbishop then pressured the university to appoint the Archbishop's candidate to a Chair of Medieval Philosophy in the Faculty of Philosophy, and to assign to him the budget line that up to that time was being kept for me. As part of the deal, I was given a position in the Department of Mathematical Physics. I was encouraged, nevertheless, to offer a course in the philosophy of science but only for science students, but I was told that the course would not be listed among courses in philosophy. When I asked why, the reason given me was to ensure that my name would not be put forward as a candidate for Dean of the Faculty of Philosophy when the present Dean retired. The Archbishop had his own candidate for that position. My Provincial had no option but to acquiesce in this matter. The students thought otherwise, however, and showed their disapproval by briefly occupying the office of the Dean of Philosophy.

And so le petit philosophe plus the 'good book that was sent his way “to clear his path” returned for the time being at least to be un petit scientifique hastily boning up on material learned sixteen years earlier at the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies. But destiny was to win out!

References:
Broad, W, 2005. “Listening for Atom Blasts, but Hearing Earthquakes”. New York Times, January 18, 2005.
Heelan, P. 1965. Quantum Mechanics and Objectivity: A Study of the Physical Philosophy of Werner Heisenberg. The Hague: Nijhoff.
Szanton, A. 1992. Recollections of Eugene P Wigner as told to Andrew Szanton. Plenum Press.
Wigner, E. 1967. Symmetries and Reflections. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.

Hogan, Edmund, 1831-1917, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/472
  • Person
  • 23 January 1831-26 November 1917

Born: 23 January 1831, Clonmel, Cobh, County Cork
Entered: 29 November 1847, St Acheul, Amiens, France - Franciae Province (FRA)
Ordained: 1855
Professed: 15 August 1866
Died: 26 November 1917, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

by 1854 at Laval, France (FRA) studying Theology 2
by 1856 at St Beuno’s, Wales (ANG) studying Theology 4
by 1865 at Rome, Italy (ROM) making Tertianship

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
“Educated at UCD; D Litt 1897; Fellow and Examiner RUI; Professor of Irish and History at UCD; RIA Council, Todd Professor of Celtic Languages, Sec for Foreign Correspondence; Governor of the High School of Irish Learning; Brehon Law Commissioner for the publication of the ancient laws and institutes of Ireland; Has written more twenty or thirty works .......” - Catholic Who’s Who and Year Book”, 1915.

On his death, the following notice was published :
Father Hogan, who passed away peacefully after an illness which, up to the last, had not impaired his mental powers, was the last link with the pioneer days of O’Donovan, O’Curry and Zeuss. He was born in Clonmel, close to Queenstown 23 January 1831. Entering the Jesuit Noviceship at St Acheul at the age of sixteen, he was Ordained nine years later, and spent long and active years in labouring, now in the pulpit and confessional, now in the classroom. He was one of the founders of the Sacred Heart College, Limerick, in 1859, remaining there until 1865.
A subsequent year in Rome contributed largely to the definite trend of Father Hogan’s mind and interests towards the study of Irish antiquities. The Irish and other archives in the Eternal City started him upon a field of enquiry where he was to prove himself a singularly diligent and competent toiler. In spite of many difficulties, including the failure of his eyesight, he pursued studies along various lines of Irish linguistics, history and archaeology, and commenced in 1880 the publication of a series of works, many of which, at least will survive as imperishable monuments of energetic and well-directed scholarship.
The list of over twenty numbers would be too long to print here - we may mention as types, the “Documenta de Sto Patricio’, the “Battle of Ros-na-Righ” and other volumes in the Todd Lecture Series. “Ibernia Ignatiana”, “Distinguished Irishmen of the 16th Century” and the great “Onomasticom Goedelicum (completed in his 77th year) - a work bearing witness to his powers of laborious and minute research.
From 1888-1908 Father Hogan filled the Chair of Irish Language and History at UCD. He was a useful and active member of the RIA, and a Commissioner for the publication of the Brehon Laws.
His many fine personal qualities, no less than his eminent merits as a scholar, gained him the esteem of a circle extending even beyond the shores of the country, for which he laboured so untiringly and unselfishly, and will cause his departure, even at the ripe old age of eighty-seven, to be sincerely mourned.”

Note from Joseph O’Malley Entry :
He made his Noviceship in France with William Kelly, and then remained there for studies with Eugene Browne and Edmund Hogan

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Hogan, Edmund Ignatius
by Eoghan Ó Raghallaigh

Hogan, Edmund Ignatius (1831–1917), priest, Irish-language scholar, and historian, was born 23 January 1831 at Belvelly, near Cobh, Co. Cork, youngest son of William Hogan, craftsman, and Mary Hogan (née Morris). Though the older members of the family were native speakers of Irish, he was brought up through English. He entered the Jesuit Order at 16, beginning his noviciate in the Jesuits' French province on 29 November 1847. He stayed there until 1854, when, having completed his first two years of theology, he transferred to St Beuno's College, Flintshire, Wales, where he was ordained on 23 September 1855, completing his fourth year of theology the following year. He took his final vows in 1866.

On his return to Ireland he began teaching at Tullabeg House, King's Co. (Offaly) (1857–8), and was transferred the following year to Clongowes Wood College, Co. Kildare. He was one of the founders in 1859 of Sacred Heart College, The Crescent, Limerick, where he stayed until 1865. That year he travelled to Rome, where he researched Irish Jesuit history. This resulted in Ibernia Ignatiana (1880). From 1873 to 1877 he was attached to the Catholic University, teaching moral theology. He served as priest and teacher in various Irish Jesuit colleges, although his teaching duties gradually decreased as he devoted himself more to scholarship. He began teaching in UCD in the 1880s and served as professor of Irish language and history there until the dissolution of the Royal University of Ireland in 1909. He was appointed examiner in Celtic by the RUI in 1888 and subsequently served as fellow in Celtic/Irish until 1909. He received a D.Litt. honoris causa from the RUI in 1897. In the RIA, to which he was elected in 1890, he was Todd professor of Celtic languages (1891–8), a member of the council (1899–1904, 1905–9), and secretary for foreign correspondence (1907–9). In addition, he was appointed a commissioner in 1894 for the publication of the ancient laws of Ireland and was a governor of the School of Irish Learning from its foundation in Dublin in 1903.

His impressive literary output in Latin, Irish, and English began in 1866 with Limerick, its history and antiquities. Other publications include Cath Ruis na Ríg for Bóinn (1892), Distinguished Irishmen of the sixteenth century (1894), History of the Irish wolf dog (1897), and A handbook of Irish idioms (1898). He spent ten years preparing his greatest, and as yet unsurpassed, work, Onomasticon Goedelicum (1910), a reference book on names of places and tribes found in Gaelic manuscripts. After its publication his sight and general health began to deteriorate and he lived a life of semi-retirement.

He died 26 November 1917 at the Jesuit House, Lower Leeson St., Dublin, and was buried in Glasnevin cemetery. Papers relating to him are housed at the Jesuit Archives, 35 Lower Leeson St., Dublin.

Royal University of Ireland Calendar, 1888–1909; Douglas Hyde, ‘A great Irish scholar’, Studies, vi (1917), 663–8; John MacErlean, ‘A bibliography of Dr Hogan, S.J.’, Studies, vi (1917), 668–71; IBL, ix (1918), 64; The Society of Jesus, A page of history: story of University College Dublin 1883–1909 (1930); Michael Tierney (ed.), Struggle with fortune (1954), 33; William Hogan, ‘Rev. Edmund Hogan S.J.: an eminent Great Island scholar’, Cork Hist. Soc. Jn., lxx (1965), 63–5; Beathaisnéis, i, iv, v

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Edmund Hogan 1831-1916
“At a ripe old age, loved and admired by a large circle of friends and honoured by scholars in many countries, there passed away from us the Rev Edmund Hogan SJ D Litt”. These are the opening words of an article on Edmund Hogan by the late Dr Douglas Hyde, in Studies 1917.

Edmund Hogan was born on 23rd January 1831 near the Cobh of Cork. He became a Jesuit at the age of sixteen and was ordained nine years later. He was one of the founders of the Sacred Heart College Limerick, and remained there from 1859-1865. From there he proceeded to Rome where he ransacked the Archives, and he gathered a vast amount of information relating to the history of the Society and of the Irish Church.

The fruit of his labours may be seen from a brief list of his works :
“Ibernia Ignatiana”, “Onomastican”, “Goedelicum”, a life of “Father Henry Fitzsimon SJ”, “Distinguished irishmen of the 16th Century”, “Outlines of Grammar of Old Irish”, “The Bollandists Life of St Patrick”, “Chronolofical List of the Irish Jesuits 1550-1814.
His net was wise. His studies include :
“History of the Irish Wolf-dog”, “Irish and Scottishe names of Herbs, Plants, Trees, etc”, “Physical Characteristics of the Irish People”.

He was Professor of Irish Language and Hostory at University College Dublin, a member of the Royal Irish Academy, Governor of the High School of Irish Learning, and one of the Brehon Law Commissioners for the publication of the ancient laws and institutes of Ireland.

“He had a fine presence, his head was handsome, his forehead broad, his eyes kindly, and his manner always courteous and affable. With all his great learning, he was charmingly simple, and he delighted in anecdotes about people he had met and known”.

He died at Leeson Street on November 26th 1916. It was of him that Fr Henry Brown made a famouus remark at recreation after his funeral “Well, I’m sure Fr Hogan will take what is coming to him like a man”.

Ingram, Richard E, 1916-1967, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/33
  • Person
  • 27 July 1916-06 October 1967

Born: 27 July 1916, Belfast, County Antrim
Entered: 07 September 1933, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1944, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 02 February 1951, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 06 October 1967, St Ignatius House of Writers, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

by 1947 at Loyola College, Baltimore, Maryland, USA (MAR) studying
by 1949 at Seismology Institute California (Holy Family, Pasadena), USA - studying
by 1962 at Holy Family Pasadena CA, USA (CAL) studying

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 21st Year No 4 1946
America :
Fr. Ingram will avail of his travelling studentship in mathematics in the John Hopkins University, Baltimore (Maryland Province). He will study under Professor Murnaghan (an Omagh C.B. boy), a student of Dr. Conway at U.C.D., and head of the mathematics department there. He hopes to leave Rineanna on October 18th, for New York.

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 3 1948

Fr. Ingram secured his Doctorate, D.Ph, in Mathematics, at the John Hopkins University, U.S.A. on 8th June, thus crowning success fully the two years of the Mathematical Studentship awarded him some years back by the National University. He will be lecturing at the Summer Course organised by Loyola University, Los Angeles, for the months of June to August.

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 4 1948

Fr. Ingram remains in the United States for another year; he has accepted a Fellowship in the Californian Tec. at Pasadena, where he will have opportunities of research work in seismology under two eminent theoretical seismologists, Guttenberg and Richter and the distinguished instrument designer, Benioff.

Fr. Jeremiah McCarthy of the Hong Kong Mission writes from the U.S.A, where he is examining possibilities of setting up an Institute of Industrial Chemistry in Hong Kong :
New York, 23rd September :
“I have spent some time at Buffalo and Boston and at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. The Professors there were most kind, and I learnt a good deal. I expect to be here for a month or six weeks, visiting factories and Colleges in New York. I met Fr. Ingram at Boston. He was doing some work at Harvard. I have heard from several sources that he had a great reputation at Johns Hopkins. I went yesterday to the Reception for Mr. Costello at Fordham and the conferring of an Honorary Degree. Cardinal Spellman was there. In his speech Mr. Costello avoided politics, except to say that the Government would stop emigration altogether, save that they would still send priests and nuns wherever they might be required. Most of the speech was taken up with a very graceful tribute to the Society and its work. He referred to the debt of Ireland to the Society in times of persecution, and again in modern times, and hoped to see an extention of our work in schools and Colleges in Ireland. The address was broadcast”.

Irish Province News 24th Year No 1 1949

LETTERS :

Fr. Ingram, writes from Holy Family Church, 1501 Fremont Avenue, South Pasadena, California, 25th October :
“I am living in a parish rectory (not S.J.) to attend Cal-Tech. It takes me about 20 minutes to get to the Institute by street car. The nearest S.J. house is about 13 miles from Cal. Tech, more than 1 hour by bus and not practical... All my work to date is geophysics. I shall not leave U.S.A. until probably July.
You wonder what life is like in a Seismological Observatory. I report at the Institute in the morning at 8 a.m. and take in a lecture or two. If time permits before lunch I am taken out to the Pasadena Observatory and help in the morning work of inspecting the charts for earth tremors. As there are two or three small shocks nearly every day, this is quite a job. Then we shuttle back to the Faculty Club for lunch and back again to the Observatory in the afternoon - the professors supplying transport. At 5 p.m, we depart from the several different works that the Observatory is handling. I return to my parish to join the pastor and senior curate at supper. By the way, all pastors out here are Irish - very much so - mine played in an All-Ireland in 1911, and his friend, Fr. Masterson, was one of the greatest footballers Cavan ever had, playing for 6 years in All Irelands, etc., 1916-22”.

Irish Province News 24th Year No 3 1949

LETTERS :

From Fr. R. Ingram, Holy Family Rectory, 1501 Fremont Ave., South Pasedena, Cal., U.S.A. :
“I have just missed a trip to the Marshall Islands and Hawaii. Shell Ox Co. is sponsoring a world-wide experiment op gravity observations to be taken simultaneously at many different stations. We had arranged a party to take the observations in the Pacific, they were to be made every 1 hour, and the Navy had agreed to co-operate by flying the personnel and instruments to the locations. But an automatic recorder was perfected by La Coste (the designer of the ‘gravy-meter’) and off he went alone. God bless American efficiency! Instead of fiying across the Pacific a party of us have charge of the observations for the Los Angeles region. We hope to get a lot of information.
I plan to leave the West for St. Louis at the end of July. I sail for Ireland with Frs. Kent and Keane on 7th September”.
(Fr. E. Kent has been acting as Assistant Chaplain in City Hospital, New York.)

Irish Province News 43rd Year No 1 1968

35 Lower Leeson Street
In the closing days of September we heard with sadness and shock the news that our Superior, Fr. Ingram, was seriously ill. He had gone to hospital with what appeared to be a slight but painful injury to the shoulder. Medical tests were soon to reveal that the cause of trouble was leukaemia in a form so acute that the end could not long be delayed. He died peacefully on the morning of Friday, 6th October. President de Valera was present at the solemn Mass of requiem, In the huge congregation representatives of the two Universities, of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, of the Royal Irish Academy and of other learned bodies were conspicuous. Father Tyndall was celebrant of the Mass, with Fathers O Catháin and Troddyn as deacon and subdeacon. For the Month's Mind there was a Mass in our community chapel, celebrated by Father Troddyn and attended by the Ingram family... father and mother, twin brother and three sisters. These met later the Fathers of the house and expressed their deep appreciation of this small act of courtesy and gratitude. Perhaps the finest tribute to Father Ingram's memory was paid by a colleague in U.C.D. who said “He was the kindest man I ever knew”.

Obituary :

Fr Richard Ingram SJ (1916-1967)

“Dick” Ingram was born in Belfast on 27th July, 1916, one of twin boys. His father, John Ingram, was an Inspector in the then Department of Agriculture and Technical Instruction, who later was largely responsible for drafting the legislation which brought the present Vocational and Technical Education system into effect in 1930. Dick's mother, Edith Kelly, came of a Galway family which settled in Dublin.
His family moved to Dublin, after a spell in Cork, about 1922 and the children were sent to a private school in Rathgar where the intelligent lady principal was so much ahead of her time that the boys began Algebra and Geometry at the age of 8 or 9. So Dick had an early introduction to mathematics. He and his twin brother, Jack, went on to school in Belvedere. There he played Rugby pluckily on the fringe of the teams in his age-class, but cricket was the game which really attracted him, and he was on the Senior XI in his final year, 1933. In class, the fact that he shone less at languages than at mathematics kept him away from the top until he distinguished himself by taking first place in Ireland in Physics in the Leaving Certificate. He entered the Society at Emo that year, on 7th September, 1933.
One might say that he remained a novice, in the best sense, all his life. He never lost the regularity of observance of spiritual duties, the habit of punctuality, the non-equivocating acceptance of obligation and a considerable measure of simplicity, which mar ked him from then on. A fellow-novice recalls something which may illustrate this. Perhaps because he was over-studious, or perhaps from his cricket-playing, Dick had badly hunched shoulders. The Master of Novices proposed a remedy, and for months Brother Ingram was to be seen at voice-production every morning walking around resolutely with a walking-stick tucked through his elbows and behind his back, to straighten him up. Many years afterwards he would say his Office in the garden at 35 Lower Leeson Street, walking as if the stick was still there.
For some years after 1935 experimental-science degrees were out of favour for Juniors, so - despite his Leaving Certificate distinction - Dick did Mathematics and Mathematical Physics at Rathfarnham. He had a remarkable power of application to his studies, which became increasingly apparent and he seemed to feel almost a special vocation, rather than a personal ambition, to do well it mathematics. In this he succeeded, taking First Honours in all his examinations and being one of four Juniors who were chosen to do fourth years in 1938-39. Meanwhile, in his first year he worked at the Seismograph Station with Mr. (now Fr.) Joe McAsey, and was in charge of it himself for the next three years. Earthquakes were never quite obedient to the Juniors' order of time, and plotting their epicentre at odd and even late hours often provided a welcome break in routine. .
In the B.Sc. examination of 1935 Dick was disappointed to be ousted from first place by a few marks by Sheila Power, afterwards a colleague of his at U.C.D. as Mrs. Tinney, but he made no mistake the following year when he took his M.Sc, and beat her and all-comers for the N.U.I. Travelling Studentship in Mathematics. As the Second World War had just begun he was allowed to postpone taking up the studentship, and went to Tullabeg for Philosophy. Along with one other philosopher Dick took up an option given him by the Provincial, Fr, Kieran, of doing the three-year course in two years, and the whole time-table was re-arranged to suit them. Thus they were faced with the formidable task of beginning right away with the third-year as well as the first-year subjects. Having successfully negotiated this crash-course, and securing a further postponement of his studentship, Dick went straight on to Milltown Park in 1941.
In a sense he was returning home, His parents lived at Dartry, half-way between Milltown and Rathfarnham, and from then until his death, save during his four years in America, he seldom missed a Sunday visit to them. Dick was no socialite, and these visits were quiet family affairs which he valued for the pleasure he knew they gave to his mother and father.
Dick took his theology studies and examinations with the serious thoroughness he had given to mathematics, and passed the Ad Gradum successfully in 1945. He had been ordained on 31st July 1944 by the Archbishop of Dublin. He did his tertianship at Rathfarnham, 1945-6, under Father Hugh Kelly.
The time had come to take up the long-postponed studentship. This was no easy matter, for a great deal of mathematics can be forgotten in seven years devoted to other demanding work. Not only that but, during those years, Mathematical studies had moved away from the Cambridge Maths. Tripos pattern little changed from the end of the nineteenth century to the time Dick did his M.Sc. Now, after the war, newer approaches were in vogue. Dick. was not deterred, and he was fortunate enough to find a friendly sponsor for his postgraduate studies at Johns Hopkins, America's foremost mathematical university, in Professor F. D. Murnaghan, a distinguished U.C.D. graduate. He worked for two years under other mathematicians of world-wide reputation, and obtained his Ph.D. degree with distinction in 1948.
During the following year he did further work at the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena. He appears to have enjoyed this year more than any other in his life, save perhaps that spent later as a Visiting Professor at Georgetown University, Washington. He lived at the rectory of a friendly pastor whom he helped with Church work on Sundays and with whom he played a regular game of golf. “We both ‘shot in the middle eighties’”, he said on his return home. It was towards the end of that year that he was to have been flown by the U.S. Air Force to be an observer of a test atomic explosion in the Pacific. The trip, to his disappointment, was cancelled at the last minute because an instrument was found to do the observations automatically.
With his very high-ranking degree Fr. Ingram was sought after by many Jesuit universities in the United States, and he could have had various appointments had he wished to “push” for them, but instead he returned to take up in 1949 what was at first a relatively unimportant lecturership at U.C.D. Indeed, although he passed through several grades of appointment there, it was not really until 1966, when he became Associate Professor of Mathematics in Modern Algebra, that he was given a status in keeping with his qualifications. In his formal application for that post he was able to mention, in an incomplete list, ten contributions of research papers to scientific journals, as well as membership of the Council of the Royal Irish Academy and the Fellowship of the Royal Astronomical Society.
From 1949 to 1963, save for a further year in America (1961 62), Fr. Ingram was stationed at Rathfarnham Castle. He made his Solemn Profession there on 2nd February, 1951. He took charge again of the Seismogaph Station, re-organising its work on a thoroughly scientific basis. As a result of contacts he made in the U.S. in 1961-62 he was offered additional equipment in that year, but he judged it better that this should go to a new station at Valentia which then took over the Rathfarnham work, as is more fully reported in the Province News for January 1963.
That number of the Province News also gives an account of a visit through the Iron Curtain to Jena in Eastern Germany which Fr. Ingram made for a European Seismological Congress in Summer 1962. He attended many such conferences as representative of University College, Dublin. It was typical of him that he regarded them not as sight-seeing holiday trips, nor yet as instructive through the papers heard, but as occasions for making “fruitful personal contacts in one's own field”, as he said on his return from the last one he was at, in Oxford, this Summer. As a result, indeed, he had correspondence with mathematicians in many parts of the world. His friendly manner as well as the fact that he could talk and write on their own high level of knowledge helped him to get on well with these men, often scientists of inter national repute. He was not unaware either that this is a form of Christian witness regarded as essential for the Church by Vatican Council documents. One such scientist, Dr. Cornelius Lanczos, now at the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, writes of him in the Winter 1967 issue of Studies : “The premature death of this great scientist and much beloved human being left an irreparable void in the Irish intellectual scene”.
Dr. Lanczos's tribute appears at the end of a review of the book which occupied much of Fr. Ingram's time during the last five years, the monumental (672 page) Volume III of the Mathematical Papers of William Rowan Hamilton, which he edited with Professor Halberstam (of T.C.D. and Nottingham) for the Royal Irish Academy. Into this exacting work he put an immense amount of careful scholarship at a level which even the mathematically illiterate can infer from the review quoted. It was a consolation to Fr. Ingram's community that he had had the sati faction just before he fell fatally ill of distributing the first half dozen copies of the book to some of his professor friends.
How highly these friends and other colleagues regarded him is shown by a tribute published in the Sunday Press of 8th October, 1967 from the pen of Dr. J. R. Timoney, Professor in the Mathematical Faculty at U.C.D., reprinted in part at the end of this notice.
Fr. Ingram was mainly responsible for the foundation of the Irish Mathematical Teachers' Association in 1963 and he devoted himself with characteristic enthusiasm to making it the success it has become. A good deal of the work of preparing its regular News Letters was done, synonymously, by him.
Father Ingram was appointed Superior of 35 Lower Leeson Street in August 1963. It was not an ideal appointment. The office was a burden to him which his shyness especially made difficult. He felt responsibility too heavily : he was a poor conversationalist, and awkward in meeting strangers : he felt hurt if his authority seemed not to be respected or if his opinion was not asked for, even in small matters. These were defects of his qualities. His contacts with University Hall students illustrate both. On the one hand he was most thoughtful in arranging each year to, drive some of them out to Belfield for early morning maths lectures : on the other he was fussy about their tenure when they played in the handball alley at the back of 35. Again, although he was most anxious to be hospitable to visitors he found it difficult in practice to reconcile this with his own rather rigid attachment to an almost monastic way of life. But here, once more, his personal friendliness made up for the shyness which merely meant that nature had not made him the perfect “mine host”. He could and did win many hearts, even in occasional contacts. Thus, when the news of his death got abroad on Friday, October 6th, it was no matter for surprise to see the number of telegrams and letters of sympathy that began to arrive. Many of these were from priests, brothers and nuns for whom he had conducted seminars in the teaching of mathematics, and who now recalled above all his courtesy, patience and humility. But what was really astonishing was the number of neighbours in Leeson Street single-room dwellers for the most part, clerks, typists, shop-hands who stopped Fathers in the street to express their grief at the sudden passing of the gentle priest who had always a cheery good-morning or good evening for them as he hurried along. And nearly all of them said that they had only learned he was Superior of the house from the obituary notice in the newspapers.
Father Ingram's pupils praised him highly for the obvious care with which his lectures were prepared, but even more so for his accessibility and helpfulness out of class. He sometimes mystified them - as must happen with a difficult subject and a professor whose standards are high and exacting - and here perhaps there peeped out a little touch of natural playfulness which for the most part was kept controlled almost to the point of suppression. This was a pity, but for it the fault lay less with Dick than with a traditional system of formation less favoured today than formerly. It did not make him less a good man, a fine Jesuit or a holy priest.
Inevitably newspaper obituaries listed “Professor Ingram's” academic achievements. They remain on record. But those who lived close to him realised that between the status of priest and that of professor he esteemed the former faraway first. Those who served his morning Mass in Leeson Street could not fail to notice the care with which he vested for the altar, his scrupulous observance of the rubrics, the atmosphere of recollection that he radiated. And when in turn he served his priest-server's Mass there was a punctiliousness and decorum about him that would do credit to a novice. He said the Sunday Mass for the domestic staff and the greater part of his Saturday evening was spent in preparing the Sunday homily. Opportunities for Saturday confessions seldom came his way, but when they did he took them eagerly. The Director of Retreats could testify to the humble thankfulness of Dick on being assigned to give a retreat or triduum. His solicitude for the sick in nearby '96' or the Pembroke was just another characteristic of his priestliness. Late on Friday nights anyone who called into the chapel would become aware in the dim light of Dick doing the Stations of the Cross. His piety was never obtrusive but no one could fail to notice it. He could be seen at his rosary more than once a day, and his beads were seldom out of his hand during his last illness.
He liked simple fun at recreation, and the little light reading he indulged in was always of an uncomplicated kind. He enjoyed a good game of golf and almost to the day when he went to hospital to die he was a regular swimmer at the Forty-foot.
The fatal illness was mercifully brief, A shoulder sore all through the Summer did not improve under massage : in early September there was loss of weight and a general feeling of sickness and, finally, double-vision. On 20 September, having said Mass with difficulty, he went into hospital. Blood and other tests were made and meanwhile his condition deteriorated from day to day. A diagnosis of leukaemia was confirmed, and Fr. Shaw, (Spiritual Father) gave him the Last Sacraments on Saturday, 30 September. For the next few days Fr. Tyndall (Minister), visiting him regularly, found the Superior clear in mind only at intervals. Perhaps he did not fully realise how near he was to death. His one anxiety was about the effect his illness would have on his parents, both in their eighties. They saw him for the last time on Tuesday, October 3rd. Next evening he said, only half consciously, to one of his community : “I told them I was all right”. Under sedation all day on Thursday, he was deeply unconscious when two of the Fathers saw him and gave him a last blessing at about 8 o'clock. The special nurse who was attending him wrote afterwards :
“When I arrived on duty at 10 p.m, on Thursday night Father was in a coma and did not speak at all : he went deeper into unconsciousness towards Friday morning at 4.15 a.m. I had lighted the Blessed Candle and had said the prayers for the Dying, then the other nurses on duty joined me in saying the Rosary. Father seemed very peaceful in his last moments : at 4.30 a.m., without any struggle, he just gave a long sigh and his suffering had come to an end”.
It was the First Friday, 6th October. Father Ingram was just over 51 years of age.

REVEREND R. E. INGRAM - A TRIBUTE

By PROFESSOR JAMES RICHARD TIMONEY

It is an understatement to say that everyone connected with mathematics in Ireland, and many not directly involved in that discipline, has been deeply shocked by the almost sudden death of Fr. R. E. Ingram, S.J. The simple title “Fr. Ingram”, is used here for he was always referred to in this way during his life.
It is not necessary to recall the brilliant mathematical career and achievements of Fr. Ingram, for these have been dealt with in many places since his death. What is not so well known is the great human personality which was behind the kind and unassuming exterior which he presented to the outside world. He was kind, humble and always cheerful.
He was a simple man, without a trace of vanity, and although he had a very heavy work-load at all times, he seemed to have plenty of time to listen to all who approached him for help with their problems.
Not only his students will recall the kindly unhurried manner in which he dealt with their difficulties, but also many people who in recent years consulted him about unusual problems in computer programming.
The poser of a seemingly impossible problem who had given up hope, would receive, after a few days, a neatly written note containing an elegant solution.
Fr. Ingram was a natural priest, for such was his great humanity that although his deep simple piety was evident, one forgot that he was a priest. In religious discussion he was tolerant and open-minded but quietly firm. When he thought the occasion demanded it, he could be outspoken and bluntly critical.
The mathematics departments in University College, Dublin, and all interested in mathematics have lost a great and enthusiastic colleague by his untimely death. The best tribute his many friends can pay to his memory is to carry on his work in the many fields where he laboured.
The Sunday Press, 8th October, 1967.

Joy, Francis, 1903-1977, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/193
  • Person
  • 23 March 1903-13 December 1977

Born: 23 March 1903. Killorglin, County Kerry
Entered: 31 August 1920, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1934, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1938, Chiesa de Gesù, Rome, Italy
Died: 13 December 1977, Jervis Street Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Belvedere College SJ, Dublin community at the time of death

Youngest brother of John C - RIP 1950, Patrick - RIP 1970

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ; Studied for BA in Classics at UCD

Father General's Assistant English Assistant

by 1936 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship
by 1937 at Rome, Italy (ROM) working with Propaganda for Faith Secretariat and then Substitute English Assistant
by 1938 at Rome Italy (ROM) Sub English Assistant

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 53rd Year No 2 1978
Obituary :
Fr Francis Joy (1903-1977)
On December 13th, 1977, Father Frank Joy died in Jervis Street Hospital. He had been brought there after collapsing in Dorset Street.
Born in Killorglin, Co, Kerry, on March 23rd 1903, he entered the Noviceship in Tullabeg on August 31st 1920. After the normal course of studies he was ordained priest in Milltown Park on July 31st 1934. His Tertianship was at St Beunos (1935-1936), and he pronounced his Final Vows in Rome, in the Church of the Holy Name, on February 2nd, 1938. They were received by the Vicar General.
Father Joy spent the years 1936-1946 in Rome in the varied works assigned to him. On his return to Ireland in 1946, after some time in Gardiner Street, and Belvedere, he was appointed Rector in Mungret College, in which office he remained from 1950 to 1956. After four years Superior in Manresa Retreat House, he was Rector in the Crescent, Limerick from 1960 to 1965, and then Rector in Clongowes from 1965 to 1968. father Joy spent some years at Retreat work in Leeson Street (1968-1970) and Milltown Park.
Father Joy went to Belvedere in 1971 and remained there in the Office of Bursar and Assistant Bursar until his death in 1976.
Father Frank Joy was very well known and liked in the Province, a thing which emphasises the friendliness and religious spirit that belonged to him. This is significant, for the successive works that were assigned to him were such as would - for the most part, - have drawn little attention to him from his fellow Jesuits in Ireland. Thus his early years in Rome were taken up with jobs that brought no attention to himself: e.g., he was, for a time, Editor of 'Lettres de Rome'. He was successively Rector or Superior of various houses over many years: and then as now a Rector of a College tended to be better known by parents and friends of the students than to other members of the Province outside his own Community. And it was, very fittingly, - in the rather hidden though important work of Bursar that he spent his last quiet years in Belvedere.

Keane, Edmund, 1916-2000, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/624
  • Person
  • 28 July 1916-11 May 2000

Born: 28 July 1916, Ballina, County Mayo
Entered: 07 September 1933, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 30 July 1947, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1951, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 11 May 2000, St Vincent’s Hospital Dublin

Part of the Gonzaga College SJ, Dublin community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1949 North American Martyrs, Auriesville NY USA (NEB) making Tertianship

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 24th Year No 1 1949

LETTERS :
Fr. Edmund Keane, writes 27th September, from Oour Lady of Martyrs Tertianship, Auriesville, New York :
“On the eve of the Long Retreat (it begins this evening) I write to commend myself in a special manner to your Holy Masses and prayers. Auriesville certainly affords all the exterior aids for a faithful retreat : peace, coolness, and the wide open-spaces so welcome after the heat and hurried tempo of New York, and one can depend on the weather to behave. After four weeks Fr. Kent and I are now well settled into the Tertianship, and both are in good health, D.G. The house is very comfortable and well appointed, food excellent, and surroundings from a scenic point of view very beautiful. In all there are 43 Tertians, of whom only about 8 hail from Provinces other than American, so there are no language difficulties. Fr. Keenan is our Instructor, and I am glad of the opportunity of spending a year under his direction.
Yesterday, the Feast of the Matryrs was marked by special celebrations, and during the day the number of pilgrims that flowed in through the Shrine must have been over 10,000. Solemn High Mass coram Episcopo (Most Rev, Dr. Gibbons of the Albany diocese) in the Coliseum at noon, preceded by a procession into it of various bodies, the Knights of Columbus, The Order of Alhambra and the A.O.H., etc. A sermon was preached by Fr. Flattery, Director of the retreat-house. The celebrant, deacon, subdeacon and M.C. were Filipino, Canadian, Italian and Dutch respectively Tertians). Supply work comes round about every third week : one regular week-end call brings us a distance of 150 miles, and so we are armed with the faculties of three dioceses - New York, Albany and Syracuse. Some hospital work, too, may likely fall to my lot, such work, apart from its value as an experimentum, should be rich in experience ..."

Irish Province News 24th Year No 3 1949
LETTERS :

From Fr. R. Ingram, Holy Family Rectory, 1501 Fremont Ave., South Pasedena, Cal., U.S.A. :
“I have just missed a trip to the Marshall Islands and Hawaii. Shell Ox Co. is sponsoring a world-wide experiment op gravity observations to be taken simultaneously at many different stations. We had arranged a party to take the observations in the Pacific, they were to be made every 1 hour, and the Navy had agreed to co-operate by flying the personnel and instruments to the locations. But an automatic recorder was perfected by La Coste (the designer of the ‘gravy-meter’) and off he went alone. God bless American efficiency! Instead of flying across the Pacific a party of us have charge of the observations for the Los Angeles region. We hope to get a lot of information.
I plan to leave the West for St. Louis at the end of July. I sail for Ireland with Frs. Kent and Keane on 7th September”.
(Fr. E. Kent has been acting as Assistant Chaplain in City Hospital, New York.)

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 105 : Special Edition 2000

Obituary

Fr Edmund (Eddie) Keane (1916-2000)

28th July 1916: Bom in Ballina, Co. Mayo
Early Education Private school in Ballina and at Clongowes Wood College
7th Sept. 1933: Entered the Society at Emo
8th Sept. 1935: First Vows at Emo
1935 - 1938: Rathfarnham - Arts at UCD
1938 - 1941: Tullabeg, studying Philosophy
1941 - 1943: Belevedere - Teacher, H.Dip in Education
1943 - 1944: Mungret College - Teaching
1944 - 1948: Milltown Park - studying Theology
30th July 1947: Ordained at Milltown Park
1948 - 1949: Tertianship at Auriesville, New York
1949 - 1951: Leeson Street - Assistant Editor “Studies” and Editor “Irish Monthly”
1951 - 2000: Gonzaga College - Teacher until 1991 when he retired from teaching. He continued to be active as Writer, Spiritual Director (SJ), etc.

Father Keane played golf and tennis until an advanced age. Even after a hip operation in recent years he went back to golf. His health was failing and he moved to Cherryfield Lodge in March while awaiting a bed in the hospital. He was admitted to St. Vincent's Private Hospital for tests on the 20th April last. There had been a gradual deterioration in his health, so his death was not unexpected. The community were glad to have a vigil with him on the evening before he died. He died peacefully before 10 a.m. on 11th May, 2000.

The following obituary appeared in The Irish Times shortly after Fr. Keane's death ...

Eddie Keane - known with much more affection as “Neddie” to generations of Gonzaga students - lived a long and an ordinary life which will almost certainly be forgotten. Fame asks of its candidates the proofs of ego and the protocols of conquest, and neither in any way interested this very benign, bookish man who taught classics in a quiet secondary school through a half century of planetary atrocity and apocalypse.

In fact, he was so self-effacing that most of us discovered his background in Ballina only by reading the death notice which his community placed in a newspaper, and so self-possessed that the other possibilities of his apostolate - the prestige of service overseas, say, or of academic ambitions as a classicist - didn't distract him for a moment from his daily obligations as a mentor and a friend to multitudinous middle-class kids cogging Xenophon and Virgil from their inky, broken-down textbooks.

Eight and nine-year-olds who served Eddie's Mass - the old Tridentine rite of Pius V in the little scented oratories of the priests' house - won't have forgotten that familiar kindness of his at the far end of their schooldays, when bewilderment over the black-letter and the red-letter Latin of the altar-server's laminated sheet would cause the affectionate face to turn, smile, and set right, as the smells of breakfast rose up from the kitchens and oriental blossom drifted across the tennis courts. And, by the same token, 18 and 19 year olds who participated in the late 1960s in the new vernacular Mass of Paul VI won't have forgotten the period after the Council, years of turmoil and resurgence, the glory days of the Jesuits under their second Ignatius, Arrupe the Basque, as the order re-invented itself in the name of liberation theology and the preferential option for the poor, when Father Keane was still there with Catullus in one hand and the Psalter in the other, trying to twin Jerusalem and Athens, the Graeco-Roman idea and the Judeo-Christian ideal.

This was no small achievement. When the Lord scolds Saul on the road to Damascus in the Acts of the Apostles, he does so with a quote from Euripides. But to the fundamentalist mind (Eddie would probably red line the phrase as oxymoron) classical civilisation is a pagan place, while to the humanist sensibility scriptural culture, because of its association with the institutional church , is usually barbaric. To one splendid Ignatian companion, however, the two belonged together as the blackboard and the chalk, so that he could speak in a senior classroom, after prayer at the start of the session, of the homosexual organisation of the fifth-century Greek army or of bisexuality in antiquity, at the time when either dispensation was a criminal activity in the Irish state and when the dislike of the gay individual was as pronounced and as pathological as the dislike of the Roman Catholic clergy is today.

Asked by a boy in the senior school what he most looked forward to after his death, he said: "I want to spend my first thousand years talking to Sophocles". (Did he know that the dramatist's Antigone had been called the fifth gospel by Simone Weil?) And again, preaching to a packed congregation in the school chapel at midnight mass on Christmas Eve, the feast of the incarnation, he declared: “Because of what we are celebrating here tonight. I am speaking to a gathering of immortals”.

Some of his former students are still fearful that eternal life and immortal life may not be the same thing. More of us again have given up altogether on the hereinafter. But Edmund Keane was a scholar and a very gentle man and I leave the adjectivity in his hands. In an ordinary and ordained life he taught us all, men and boys, that continuity is a form of constancy, that constancy is an act of fidelity, and that fidelity is the behaviour of love. I hope that he wept tears at the sight of heaven, just as he wept on the marble steps of the Propylaea on the Acropolis in Athens in 1965 and cried out among the tourists: "How beautiful! How beautiful!"

His articles appeared in the Sacred Heart Messenger and not in Concilium; his parish work during the summer adjournments was in Britain and not in Bolivia; but his dedication, on the long gravel drive to the long millennium, to the two discredited creeds of the Jew and the Greek - to the Way, the Truth and the Life on the one hand and to the true, the Good and the Beautiful - was a threshold and a turning point to the students he guided.

Now he has entered, more deeply than ever before, the society of Jesus.

Aidan Matthews

Interfuse No 106 : Autumn 2000

FATER EDMUND KEANE SJ

Joe Brennan

Father Edmund Keane was born on July 28th 1916 and died in St. Vincent's Private on 11th May 2000. His primary education was in his home-town. He went to Clongowes for his secondary education where he was an above average student, good at games, particularly tennis. He matriculated in 5th year and entered the Society in Emo in September 1933.

He did a Classics degree in UCD, gaining first-class honours. He was an exceptionally bright student and had no difficulty in putting either Greek or Latin words to the popular tunes of the day or songs from Gilbert and Sullivan or other operettas.

This ease in the Classics was evident to his students in Gonzaga in a teaching career of 40 years. To a professional ease was added an enthusiasm for the intellectual and linguistic challenge Greek and Latin demand. A past pupil, Aidan Matthews, wrote of him in an obituary in the Irish Times:

“... he was so self effacing that most of us discovered his background in Ballina only by reading the death notice which his community placed in a newspaper, and so self-possessed that the other possibilities of his apostolate - the prestige of service overseas, say, or of academic ambitions as a classicist - didn't distract him for a moment from his daily obligations as a mentor and a friend to a multitudinous middle-class kids cogging Xenophon and Virgil from their inky, broken-down text-books”.

His own course of studies took the normal course; Philosophy in Tullabeg, two years regency in Belvedere, one in Mungret, Theology and ordination in Milltown. He did his tertianship in Auriesville, New York, and particularly enjoyed the chance to ski, skate and play ice-hockey, once again showing his natural athletic abilities.

For two years he was in Leeson Street as assistant Editor of Studies and Editor of the Irish Monthly. In 1951 he went to Gonzaga where he remained for almost 50 years. He founded the Classics Department there, but also helped in many other fields, especially rugby, and above all, tennis. In a fitting tribute to his contribution to Gonzaga, a group of past pupils have commissioned the renewal of the College courts with a savannah-grass surface as a memorial to Eddie and his contribution to Gonzaga.

In more recent decades he had developed a pusillus grex on Sunday mornings in the Domestic Chapel. His insights were greatly valued. In the words of one of the most regular members he was “holy, intelligent, very well informed and obviously a scholar. He was very kind and possessed a very natural dignity”.

In community he made a tremendous contribution to recreation. His joy with words and word-plays, his interest in current affairs, his enthusiasm for all forms of sports meant that all benefited from his wit and wisdom. Yet in all of this he was basically a reserved man, rarely sharing his religious insights. While no stoic or sophist - he could be devastatingly critical of the 'culture' of the classical world - he did not believe in wearing his heart on his sleeve.

While the boys might not know of his Mayo origins, the community knew of his pietas. He was proud to bring his cousin, President Mary Robinsion, to visit the house. He delighted in the company of his nephews and nieces, especially Dillie Keane, the well-known founder of “Fascinating Aida”. As one of his nephews wrote; “To us he was so constant, such a rock of good sense, kindly and humorous, that we will miss him greatly”.

Many of his past-pupils speak highly of him. He kept up a correspondence with many of them. One writes: “I was one of those who corresponded over the years with Father Keane. I have kept all his letters and agree with you that they were all minor works of art, carefully crafted and full of information and insightful analysis, as he would have wished. I shall be doubly sure now to safeguard them”.

His reputation with the lay staff was particularly high. While he had his natural reserve, he was open to all. They found him “extraordinarily civil”, with a positive attitude to all. Many enjoyed his play with words and responded to it. But behind it all they knew him to be “a dedicated priest and don”"

For many years he wrote a most popular article in the Messenger, “If you see what I mean”. They were a perfect demonstration of learning worn lightly. Yet they had a deeper purpose behind them, as the title implied. Clearly in all his work this balance of the sacred and the profane was something which he did naturally, though greatly aided by grace. This balance was expressed by Aidan Matthews in his obituary:

“His articles appeared in the Sacred Heart Messenger and not in Concilium; his parish work during the summer adjournments was in Britain and not in Bolivia; but his dedication, on the long gravel drive to the long millennium, to the two discredited creeds of the Jew and the Greek - to the way, the Truth and the Life on the one hand and to the true, the Good and the Beautiful - was a threshold and a turning point to the students he guided.

Now he has entered, more deeply than ever before, the society of Jesus."

Kearney, Brendan, 1935-2014, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/850
  • Person
  • 05 September 1935-24 February 2014

Born: 05 September 1935, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1953, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 10 July 1968, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1981, Boston College High School, MA, USA
Died: 24 February 2014, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

by 1981 at Boston College High, MA, USA (NEN) Sabbatical
by 1994 at Granada Hills, Los Angeles CA, USA (CAL) working
by 2003 at Redondo Beach CA. USA (CAL) working

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 155 : Spring 2014

Obituary

Fr Brendan Kearney (1935-2014)

Brendan was born in Dublin on 5 September 1935. His mother was from Kerry and his father from Kilkenny. His Dad, known as “APK” was the author of a humorous series “Dear Sean, Dear Mama” that ran for many years in Dublin Opinion.

After primary schooling in Cabra Brendan went to Belvedere, 1947-50, and then transferred to Castleknock College, 1951-53, where his father was on the teaching staff. He won the Bodkin Prize at age 16 for a humorous essay which revealed his command both of language and of ideas. There is an important anecdote from his time in Castleknock: a Dublin accountant approached a member of the Province some years ago and asked “Isn't Brendan Kearney one of your outfit?” And he went on: “One of the greatest privileges of my life was to have sat beside him in Castleknock”. The details of why are not recorded, but one may presume that Brendan, who was a bright pupil, helped him over his academic difficulties, and perhaps in other ways. He was invariably willing to help lame dogs over stiles. He also had a tireless sense of humour: he could see the funny and ludicrous side of things, whether in the details of an outdated Jesuit formation or in public and ecclesiastical affairs. His humour made it easy for the slower student to catch on to needed insights, while his infectious laughter helped to defuse many a situation throughout his life, especially the final and painful phase of his life in Cherryfield.

Studies
He entered Emo at 18 on September 7, 1953: there were 25 in his year. He took Vows two years later. He then studied Arts at UCD, taking a high degree in Mathematics. While “math” as he called it attracted him, he also proved an excellent philosopher during his three years in Tullabeg, 1958-61. There he became an enthusiast of Bernard Lonergan's fresh approach to human understanding in Insight but suffered a breakdown as a result of his over-dedication to study. He spent four years in Regency, divided between Belvedere and Clongowes. Unfortunately he was knocked off his bike while stationed at Belvedere, and suffered meningitis. Aware that the medical thinking of the day might stand in the way of his ordination, he confided to his brethren that if he had to leave the Society, it would be in a box. His sense of vocation was strong and determined, and happily those in authority respected it as being from God. And so he stayed, but the question marks over his continuance and his capacity for sustained hard work must have been burdens for him. In fact while philosophy and theology wore him down, mathematical problems he could ttackle with zest and energy. Math, he would say, did not deal with the great issues of life and death, and so he could approach with calmness mere issues of numbers, angles and calculus.

Having fallen a year behind his group, he began theology in 1965, and was ordained on 10 July 1968 in Milltown Park by Dr John Charles McQuaid. His theological thinking was incisive, and he would ask searching questions of his teachers and fellow-students. His counter cultural side often manifested itself. One instance was his request not to be sent with the rest of the 'young men' to Lisdoonvarna for the summer holiday. This delightful village used come to life only after harvest time: in June it was moribund. Brendan's appeal, backed up by a promise that he would create no trouble if he were allowed stay in Milltown on his own, was dismissed, and so he joined what was called 'organised joy', Perhaps Brendan had had a premonition of what was to come: shortly before we arrived, a woman's body thrown from a plane was washed up on the local beach. This took away some of the joy of swimming there, allied to the fact that the beach in question was ten miles away.

Belvedere
In 1969 he returned to Belvedere and taught “Math” there for 20 years with a short break in Boston College High School, 1980-81. As a teacher he was especially helpful to the brighter students, and had a formidable reputation for his capacity to address abstruse formulae which his students would dig out to test him. One parent remarked that her son learnt Maths from Fr Kearney but how to pass his exam from another teacher. On the sports-field he was less than convincing as a coach, but one day with the Under-10s he pulled a player from the scrum and made him out-half. This was the making of Ollie Campbell's career as out-half for Ireland

He smoked a pipe at this stage, with the window of his room closed, while he wrestled with mathematical, scientific, philosophical and religious challenges. When I asked about the closed window, he confided that he feared oxygen intoxication! So he reeked of smoke, restricted entry to his Chess Club to those of club-sound mind and pleasing disposition.” He puffed his way peacefully through extraordinary times: Pre-Lemass Ireland and the Celtic Tiger; World War Two and the Holocaust, the Cold War, the Kennedy era, the aggiornamento of the Church and of the Society of Jesus, shifts in moral practice, the decline in vocations - so many worlds of rapid and unpredictable change, with which many others could not cope.

The Pastoral Director at Belvedere was once asked who had been most helpful among the teachers of religion during the eighties. He mentioned two, Brendan being one. 'He brought an intellectual dimension to his teaching which was badly needed at a time when RK was in free fall.' Brendan worked everything out to its foundations, and could thus make intelligible what otherwise had to be taken on faith. In class, he used CS Lewis's Mere Christianity to great effect, while he tore to shreds Bertrand Russell's arguments in Why I am Not a Christian.

His appointment as Editor of The Belvederian gave endless scope to his literary abilities -- he had earlier acted as ghost-writer for his father in some of the “Dear Sean, Dear Mama” exchanges. The only problem was that he could never put pen to paper until school was finished, which meant that often he got no summer break, and The Belvederian was dependably late. He rarely went to plays or films and was more passive than active in socialising.

Bolton Street and California
In 1989 Brendan was appointed Chaplain in Bolton St DIT, with the task of “lurking with intent' to engage students whose minds were usually on other things. A sabbatical year 1993-94 led to parish work in California for five years. This included a year in Brixton Hill in London. He returned to Bolton St in 1998 and worked there till 2004. Then he returned to parish life in Redondo Beach as Associate Pastor till 2010. He kept in touch with a wide circle of friends by email – no ordinary letters but ones which showed his inquiring and quizzical mind. Where he considered it appropriate, he would gently and wittily demolish what he judged false. It was a bit like watching a surgeon wielding a delicate but sharp instrument to excise a tumour.

His letters from the US were provocative, witty and often less than immediately intelligible. He illustrated everything with ducks and signed off with Quacks. A few illustrations of his “Kearney-isms”: “I don't have your physical address, so please check with Barbara, who is still living on your tectonic plate”. “Don't keep scanning the skies. I'll let you know when I get any news of my blood condition. QUACK”. For religion to be real it seems to need some humour and incongruity, What about the Aran islander who spends the day ploughing rocks, harrowing rocks, sowing spuds between rocks... Every evening he drags himself home to his cabin, looks at the crucifix on the wall, and prays this prayer aloud: “Arrah, Jesus, shure 'tis aisy for you. This is a prayer from a man of Catholic faith”.

It seems that during his time in the US, Brendan decided to leave his body to Medical Science. His motivation we do not know: was it the researcher in him, always pushing out the boundaries of knowledge? Or was it humility - a willingness to be given away? It was, one way or the other a serious matter, but not without its lighter side: while in the Leeson St Community in 2010 Brendan's behaviour was a puzzle to many of the older brethren. One of these came to hear of his decision to leave his body to science, and remarked quietly “I bet it's his brain they're after!” There was more in this perhaps than the speaker realized: Brendan had in fact a remarkably original mind.

The Final Years
Brendan was 75 when he returned to Ireland. A job was waiting for him, as Chaplain of the Eye and Ear Hospital, which had been held by Eddie and then John Fitzgerald. But there were already signs of his imminent decline, and he spent several months in Leeson St, which were uncomfortable for himself and the brethren. He moved into a higher level of quirkiness and unpredictability, and became less able to manage his daily life, telephone, computer, house keys etc. It gradually emerged that he had already had difficulties in Redondo Beach, and that he had relied on a good deal of support to do his daily tasks there. Everyone there loved him, and the ladies of the parish especially spared no pains to help him. “We all loved him so much” was the comment of the parish secretary in Redondo Beach when told of his death. He apparently was quite at ease in being served and looked after, whether by his family, which he cherished, or by others. His sister Ann regularly came to the Sunday Mass in Cherryfield with her friend Siobhán to play and sing.

“We all loved him so much...” This comment was repeated over and over by the Staff in Cherryfield where he lived from early 2011. Brendan may not have been everyone's “cup of tea” because some found it hard to adjust to his quirky and sometimes argumentative style. But why in general was he so well loved? Certainly because of his genuineness and simplicity, added to his sense of humour. He saw through the less agreeable turns of life, and found the humour deep down in them. He could indeed be awkward according as his mind failed through a succession of minor strokes.

When as his Superior I brought him to Cherryfield, he remarked quite simply, “This is my last address”. As the weeks lengthened into months and years, I used ask him how he was. “I never complain” he would say. And it was true, no matter how frustrated he must have found himself. Even when he lost most of his power of speech, he would greet his visitors with an expansive smile and his eyes would shine.

The Staff loved his playfulness. He had a fixation about ducks: he stitched duck badges on his clothes, collected pictures and toys of ducks, and signed on and off with “Quack”. One of the nurses brought him down to Herbert Park, where with great delight he fed the ducks. He was also loved for what can best be called his humility. He was highly gifted, but he never sought to raise his own status thereby. Besides his gift in the domain of math, he was at home in music, could paint, write well, carve a chess set, play serious Bridge, think things through, debate American history, read Little Dorrit and GKC with delight. He saw things, as Lonergan would say, from a higher viewpoint than many of us enjoyed, but he never laboured his gifts or made us feel inferior.

What of the “secret scriptures of the man?” What do we know of what goes on in someone's heart? Hopkins' line was verified in him: “There lives the deepest freshness, deep down things”. He prayed. He had deep faith and a strong and simple devotion to Our Lady. He was critical of errant Marian devotion, and believed that Mary's counsel is summed up in “See what I've brought you!” He suffered a great deal when no longer in control of his mind, but he had made his own Lonergan's account of the Law of the Cross - “Unavoidable suffering, borne patiently and in faith, is redemptive”. So it was for Jesus, and so it was for Brendan. This belief underpinned his statement “I never complain”. He lived without self-pity the various disappointments and trials of his life. To be officially retired, to be enduring progressive cognitive impairment, to be confined to a wheelchair, to be unable to feed himself, and yet never to complain, but instead to see the funny side of reality - this is quiet heroism. “Blessed are those who weep, for they shall laugh”.

His desk-mate in Castleknock of sixty years ago was right. It has indeed been a privilege to have had him as companion for the past sixty years.

Keelaghan, Edward, 1925-2005, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/625
  • Person
  • 15 April 1925-08 April 2005

Born: 15 April 1925, Ballybay, County Monaghan
Entered: 07 September 1943, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 26 July 1957, Innsbruck, Austria
Final Vows: 05 November 1977, Loyola, Eglinton Road, Dublin
Died: 08 April 2005, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

by 1956 at Innsbruck, Austria (ASR) studying
by 1986 at East Acton, London (BRI) working Hammersmith Hospital

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 128 : Special Issue June 2006

Obituary

Edward (Ned) Keelaghan (1925-2005)

15th April 1925: Born in Ballybay, Co. Monaghan
Early education at CBS, Monaghan
7th September 1943: Entered the Society at Emo
8th September 1945: First Vows at Emo
1945 - 1948: Rathfarnham - Studied Arts at UCD
1948 - 1951: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1951 - 1954: Belvedere - Regency
1954 - 1955: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
1955 - 1958: Innsbruck - Studied Theology
26th July 1957: Ordained at Innsbruck
1958 - 1959: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1959 - 1960: Clongowes - Teacher, Assistant Prefect of Studies; Lecturer in Pedagogy
1960 - 1962: Crescent College - Teacher; Assistant Prefect of Studies
1962 - 1963: Clongowes - Lower Line Prefect; Teacher; Lecturer in Pedagogy
1963 - 1966: Clongowes - Minister
1966 - 1967: Tullabeg - Mission Staff.
1967 - 1969: Rathfarnham - Director of Retreat House
1969 - 1974: Leeson Street - National Director of Sodalities & CLC Group
1974 - 1976: Gardiner Street - Minister
1976 - 1978: University Hall - Principal
5th November 1977: Final Vows
1978 - 1980: Leeson Street - Minister; Directed Spiritual Exercises
1980 - 1985: University Hall
1980 - 1983: Assistant Principal; Mission Staff
1983 - 1984: Promoter of Messenger
1984 - 1985: Minister in Leeson Street
1985 - 1988: London - Chaplain in Hammersmith Hospital
1988 - 1989: Chaplain to Irish Emigrants
1989 - 1994: Cherryfield Lodge -
1989 - 1993: Vice-Superior
1993 - 1994: Superior
1994 - 1995: Dooradoyle - Assistant Chaplain
1995 - 2001: John Austin House - Superior; Eucharistic Youth Movement, Directed Spiritual Exercises
2001 - 2004: Belvedere
2001 - 2002: Mini-sabbatical; Promoted Eucharistic Youth Movement; Directed Spiritual Exercises
2002 - 2003: Minister; Health Prefect; Guestmaster
2003 - 2004: Promoted Eucharistic Youth Movement; - Directed Spiritual Exercises, Assisted in Gardiner St
2004 - 2005: St. Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street - Church work.
8th April 2005: Died in Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Father Keelaghan was admitted to Cherryfield Lodge on March 4", 2005 having spent some time in the Mater Hospital. For the first few weeks he seemed to improve and was mobile. In the final ten days his condition deteriorated slowly and he died peacefully on Friday 8th. April. Father Dargan and the nursing staff were present.

John Guiney writes:

A brief glance at Ned's "curriculum vitae" indicates a great wealth and variety of talent. Most of his apostolic life after formation was spent in areas of responsibility as Superior, Minister, Director of Retreat House, Principal of University Hall, Superior in John Austin House, and Cherryfield.

There is a little vignette previous to his appointment to run Cherryfield Lodge. The then Provincial , Philip Harnett, was visiting Ned in the U.K. prior to his next status. When discussing the next status, Philip asked, “What about Cherryfield?" Ned was naturally somewhat nonplussed - was it not too soon ? (he was only aged 63 ) – he thought Philip was suggesting he become a patient there.

What suited Ned so admirably to fulfil these various areas was his outstanding talent of friendship and kindness with others. Ned was always sympathetic, generous, thoughtful, kind. If he needed help, he was not shy to ask for it.

Ned had a wealth of friends and admirers outside the Society, due not only to his variety of apostolates, but also to his obvious goodness. This made himn quite unafraid, on occasion, to enlist help. He was not slow to take an initiative or make expected requests.

Whien he was Minister in Clongowes in 1963-66 (with Hilary Lawton as Rector), Clongowes had plans for a large new building, but all our usual bankers refused to furnish the necessary loan facilities, much to Hilary's disappointment and frustration. However, he had not counted on the initiative of his Minister who went into the Ulster Bank in Naas (unusual territory for us), the management of which was very happy to secure the large prestigious Clongowes account. And so the building forged ahead.

Ned's years as Superior in Cherryfield were notable for his invitations to open it to the Province by inviting all of us to use the unoccupied space for stays in Dublin or for private retreats. He was gracious in his hospitality, and if ever he was visiting a sick member of the staff, or other associates, he could come loaded with flowers or chocolates or a bottle of wine.

From the homily by Derek Cassidy at the Funeral Mass in Gardiner Street:

In his early days Eddie was a cheerful boy, attending school at CBS, Monaghan, and, I am very reliably informed, addressing all his homework with great care and even a song! He was a contented and a happy child, little trouble to anyone. I suggest that this is the way Ned led all his life - little trouble to anyone. Indeed to all who have spoken to me of their experience of Fr Eddie, this sense of a quiet and contented person has been theirs.

Eddie joined the Society of Jesus, at Emo Park, Portarlington, in 1943, and after eight years of studies, he joined the Community at Belvedere College as a 'scholastic' or Regent until 1954. It was the beginning of some lasting friendships and good companionships and again many Past Pupils have expressed their deep gratitude to me for this gift to them from Ned. After Belvedere, Ned went to Milltown for one year and then completed his study of Theology at Innsbruck, where he was ordained in 1958.

Over the years Ned had a most fruitful and varied ministry: all of his ministry may well be summed up in the response we have used in our psalm: "The Lord is Compassion and Love". I have no doubt that God used the talents of His friend and priest, Ned, to bring to our world this awareness of compassion and love. Ned could be a tad obsequious from time to time and some, including myself, found it infuriating! But I am sure that this only reflects on my own impatience, and nothing to be set against Ned!
The first reading from the Book of Wisdom (3:1-9) has God reminding you and me that “Grace and Mercy await those He has chosen”. How deeply Ned longed for these qualities. He practiced 'grace' everywhere he went - a gentleman to his very core, and his God will, without any hesitancy, reflect that same gentle mercy to him now:

Kent, Edmond, 1915-1999, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/478
  • Person
  • 09 June 1915-08 November 1999

Born: 09 June 1915, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1933, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 30 July 1947, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1968, College of Industrial Relations, Ranelagh, Dublin
Died: 08 November 1999, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the Sacred Heart, Limerick community at the time of death.

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

??Brother of James Kent; LEFT from Juniorate 1930; both at Clongowes?

by 1949 North American Martyrs Retreat House, Auriesville NY USA (NEB) making Tertianship

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Kent, Edmond
by David Murphy

Kent, Edmond (1915–99), Jesuit priest and economist, was born 9 June 1915 at 15 Rostrevor Terrace, Rathgar, Dublin, son of Pierce Kent, civil servant and later commissioner of the board of works, and Mary Catherine Kent (née Connolly). Educated at Clongowes Wood College, Kildare, he entered the Society of Jesus at Emo on 7 September 1933, taking his first vows in September 1935. He lived at the Jesuit community in Rathfarnham 1935–9 while studying economics at UCD. In 1939 he moved to Tullabeg, where he studied philosophy, before returning to Dublin, where he studied theology at Milltown Park (1944–8). Ordained priest on 30 July 1947, he spent his tertianship (1948–9) at Auriesville, where he completed further studies in social sciences.

Returning to Dublin, he became assistant-director at University Hall (1949–52) while also teaching extramural classes in economic science at UCD in a diploma course for trade unionists. He had long been interested in the trade union movement and was often criticised by members of the Federated Union of Employers, who accused him of being too left-wing. In fact his convictions were firmly based in his Christian faith. He once remarked: ‘I honestly believe that we can have no industrial peace unless people are living truly Christian lives' (Interfuse, no. 104, 29). The Jesuit order had founded (1946) an education programme for workers, and Kent spent a period in New York observing Jesuit initiatives in the labour colleges there. On his return to Dublin, he worked as a lecturer in the newly founded Catholic Workers College (est. 1951), later renamed the National College of Industrial Relations. Teaching trade unionism and acting as prefect of studies, he had a great impact on students and union officials, helping them formulate and present their cases in the Labour Court.

In 1969 he moved to the Jesuit community at Leeson St. and, although he still continued to lecture at the Catholic Workers College, gradually moved away from his trade union activity. He took over as director of the Messenger office (1969–89), and several of his colleagues thought that he would find the transition difficult. He threw himself into his new work with enthusiasm, however, travelling around the country promoting the Messenger while also giving seminars on devotion to the Sacred Heart. Preaching in numerous parishes around the country, he also conducted seminars at the adult education centre in Birmingham. He later served as chaplain at St Vincent's private hospital in Dublin (1983–9).

In his later years he suffered from failing eyesight and had a bad fall (1989) while visiting Cherryfield Lodge, the Jesuit retirement home in Dublin. On his release from hospital he became a permanent resident there, taking care of the home's accounts and reorganising its library. He died at Cherryfield Lodge, 8 November 1999, and was buried in the Jesuit plot in Glasnevin cemetery.

Ir. Times, 20 Nov. 1999; Paul Leonard, SJ, ‘Father Kent and the Messenger Office’, Interfuse (Jesuit in-house publication), no. 104 (2000), 29–33; Interfuse, no. 105 (2000), 21–4; further information from Fr Fergus O'Donoghue, SJ, Jesuit archives, Dublin

◆ Companions in Mission1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Note from Tommie O’Meara Entry
Fr .Eddie Kent did him a great service by supplying him with books of varying interest for him, spiritual, Irish and so forth. Dormant interests were awakened and life surely was made a little more bearable; concelebrated Mass with other ailing Jesuits in Cherryfield and the many daily rosaries also helped him.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 24th Year No 1 1949

LETTERS :

Fr. Edmund Keane, writes 27th September, from Our Lady of Martyrs Tertianship, Auriesville, New York :
“On the eve of the Long Retreat (it begins this evening) I write to commend myself in a special manner to your Holy Masses and prayers. Auriesville certainly affords all the exterior aids for a faithful retreat : peace, coolness, and the wide open-spaces so welcome after the heat and hurried tempo of New York, and one can depend on the weather to behave. After four weeks Fr. Kent and I are now well settled into the Tertianship, and both are in good health, D.G. The house is very comfortable and well appointed, food excellent, and surroundings from a scenic point of view very beautiful. In all there are 43 Tertians, of whom only about 8 hail from Provinces other than American, so there are no language difficulties. Fr. Keenan is our Instructor, and I am glad of the opportunity of spending a year under his direction.
Yesterday, the Feast of the Matryrs was marked by special celebrations, and during the day the number of pilgrims that flowed in through the Shrine must have been over 10,000. Solemn High Mass coram Episcopo (Most Rev, Dr. Gibbons of the Albany diocese) in the Coliseum at noon, preceded by a procession into it of various bodies, the Knights of Columbus, The Order of Alhambra and the A.O.H., etc. A sermon was preached by Fr. Flattery, Director of the retreat-house. The celebrant, deacon, subdeacon and M.C. were Filipino, Canadian, Italian and Dutch respectively Tertians). Supply work comes round about every third week : one regular week-end call brings us a distance of 150 miles, and so we are armed with the faculties of three dioceses - New York, Albany and Syracuse. Some hospital work, too, may likely fall to my lot, such work, apart from its value as an experimentum, should be rich in experience ..."

Irish Province News 24th Year No 3 1949

LETTERS :
From Fr. R. Ingram, Holy Family Rectory, 1501 Fremont Ave., South Pasedena, Cal., U.S.A. :
“I have just missed a trip to the Marshall Islands and Hawaii. Shell Ox Co. is sponsoring a world-wide experiment op gravity observations to be taken simultaneously at many different stations. We had arranged a party to take the observations in the Pacific, they were to be made every 1 hour, and the Navy had agreed to co-operate by flying the personnel and instruments to the locations. But an automatic recorder was perfected by La Coste (the designer of the ‘gravy-meter’) and off he went alone. God bless American efficiency! Instead of flying across the Pacific a party of us have charge of the observations for the Los Angeles region. We hope to get a lot of information.
I plan to leave the West for St. Louis at the end of July. I sail for Ireland with Frs. Kent and Keane on 7th September”.
(Fr. E. Kent has been acting as Assistant Chaplain in City Hospital, New York.)

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 105 : Special Edition 2000

Obituary

Fr Edmund Kent (1915-1999)

1915, June 9: Born in Dublin.
Early education: Clongowes Wood College.
1933, Sept 7: Entered the Society at Emo.
1935, Sept 8: First vows at Emo.
1935 - 1939: Rathfarnham, studying Economics at U.C.D.
1939 - 1942: Tullabeg, studying philosophy.
1942 - 1944 : Mungret College, teaching.
1944 - 1948 : Milltown Park, studying theology.
1947 30th July: Ordained priest at Milltown Park,
1948 - 1949: Tertianship at Auriesville, and Social Studies.
1949 - 1952: University Hall, Asstd. Director and giving extra mural courses at UCD & Catholic Workers' College (NCI).
1952 - 1954: Milltown Park, Dir. Catholic Workers' College.
1954 - 1969: Catholic Workers' College, Minister, Prefect of Studies, Lecturer in Trade Unionism, etc.
1969 - 1989: Leeson St., Lecturer at C.I.R. (NCT); Messenger Office: in charge of sales and promoting devotion to the Sacred Heart
1983 - 1989: Chaplain, St. Vincent's Private Hospital.
1989 - 1999: Cherryfield Lodge, Treasurer and assistant Province Archivist for some years, Writer.

Father Kent first went to Cherryfield Lodge for lunch. But while taking a walk around the grounds, and with impaired eyesight, he fell on a high wall and had to be hospitalized. He returned to Cherryfield Lodge as a convalescent and then remained on as a permanent resident. At first he did the books and then reorganized the library. Gradually he lost his sight and became increasingly infirm.

He died peacefully at Cherryfield Lodge on 8th November 1999.

May he rest in the peace of Christ.

The following obituary appeared in the Irish Times, Saturday, November 20th, 1999

Father Edmond Kent SJ, who died in Dublin on November 8th, played a seminal role in establishing and moulding the ethos of the National College of Industrial relations (formerly known as the Catholic Workers' College), to which many leading figures from the Irish trade union movement - past and present - and some top business men are indebted for their tertiary education.

The son of a senior civil servant, who became a Commissioner of the Board of Works, he was sent to Clongowes Wood College, the Jesuit school and afterwards entered the Order's novitiate at Emo at the age of 18.

Unusually for the time, he was asked to study for a degree in economics - the norm for Jesuit students was to take a degree in a subject that they could go on to use as teachers. He focused on agricultural economics for his master's degree - taking “the dual purpose cow” for his thesis.

As early as 1938 - and again in 1946 - the General Congregation of the Jesuit order directed that a Centre of Information and Social Action be set up in all its provinces, including Ireland. The catalyst for this was the papal encyclicals on social teaching, Rerum Novarum (1891) and Quadragesimo Anno (1931). The essential philosophy was based on the need for "strong democracy" as the way to bring about reconstruction of the social order.

Worker education was to be the key ingredient. Father Kent was sent to New York for a year to find out what his fellow Jesuits were doing in the labour colleges there. He returned to teach aongside Edward Coyne SJ, on the social and economic science diploma course for trade unionists at UCD. It is significant, however, that the Catholic Workers College did not open its doors before 1951. This would suggest that the Jesuits were motivated much less by anti-communism in the Catholic ethos of the time than by Alfred O'Rahilly of UCC, for example, who had set up a similar diploma course for workers in Cork in 1946.

Father Kent had an impact from the start on students and trade union leaders alike. He shared a real empathy with and concern for workers, motivated by the belief that people should be enabled to assert their just rights, regardless of status or social class: the establishment of the Labour Court in 1946 meant that union representatives had to be articulate in presenting their members' cases.

It was an ethos that did not endear Father Kent to the upper echelons of the Federated Union of Employers who regarded the Jesuit ground breaker as being much too left wing. He never saw himself as being anything other than orthodox, however.

His was the “mustard seed” in those early years that gradually helped to create a vibrant and educated industrial relations environment in the Republic, over the following decades, culminating in the current era of social partnership - as the college went on to cater for both sides of industry. The NCIR continued to be run by the Jesuits until 1988 when it became a company limited by guarantee.

Fr Edmund Kent: born 1915, died November 1999

Laheen, Kevin A, 1919-2019, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/854
  • Person
  • 18 February 1919-26 March 2019

Born: 18 February 1919, Bray, Co Wicklow & Dublin
Entered: 16 September 1938, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1952, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1955, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 26 March 2019, Highfield Healthcare, Whitehall, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

Brother of Br Christopher J Laheen - LEFT 08 September 1942
Early Education at Presentation College Bray, Co Wicklow; Belvedere College SJ

1940-1943 Rathfarnham - Studying Arts at UCD
1943-1946 Tullabeg - Studying Philosophy
1946-1949 Belvedere College SJ - Regency : Teacher; Choir Master; Studying H Dip in Education at UCD (46-47)
1949-1953 Milltown Park - Studying Theology
1953-1954 Rathfarnham - Tertianship
1954-1957 Mungret College SJ - Teacher; Liturgical Music; Librarian
1957-1962 Gonzaga College SJ - Teacher; Games Master; Subminister
1962-1985 Rathfarnham - Mission Staff; Giving Retreats
1981 Association Rathfarnham
1983 Promoter of Apostleship of Prayer; Writer
1985-2019 Leeson St - Mission Staff; Giving Missions and Directs Spiritual Exercises; Promoter of Apostleship of Prayer; Writer
2001 Council Member of Knights of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem and Ecclesiastical Master of Ceremonies
2014 Highfield Healthcare, Swords Road, Dublin 9

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/kevin-laheen-rip/

Kevin Laheen RIP
Fr Kevin Laheen SJ, died peacefully on Tuesday 26 March 2019 in the Highfield Healthcare centre, Drumcondra. His Jesuit brothers, family and friends gathered for his funeral Mass in Milltown Park Chapel at 11am the following Friday. Fr Kevin died just a few weeks after his 100th birthday which he celebrated with the same family and friends and fellow Jesuits, back in February. Charlie Davy SJ was the principal celebrant and homilist on Friday. He warmly welcomed those present and in particular the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre and those friends who had been so faithful visiting Fr Kevin in his last five years in Highfield. He also spoke briefly about Fr Kevin’s life, noting that he was born in 1919, so his childhood was in the troubled years before and after the founding of the state. He grew up during economic war of the 1930s and lived through the second world war as a scholastic. “They were authoritarian times in the Church and in the Jesuits,” said Fr Charlie, adding that this “did not favour a more rounded personal formation... but today we thank the Lord that Kevin along with seven others of his Belvedere year responded to the Lord’s call.” That calling led Fr Kevin to become a teacher first, then for the greater part of his active life he was a preacher of parish missions the length and breadth of the country, helping many on their journey of faith, according to Fr Charlie. In later years he wrote books on Mungret and Tullabeg, the Mission crosses of Killaloe as well as many articles so that there would be a historical record of work done by his brother Jesuits of earlier times. In his homily Fr Charlie spoke about Fr Kevin’s association with the Order of the Holy Sepulchre, whom he said, gave Kevin great support in his latter years, and share his love of the Holy Land. Fr Kevin had brought many groups there to visit the places where Jesus walked, and preached and healed. He also spoke about the ‘Our Father’, as the prayer that came to him when he was reflecting on what to preach about at Kevin’s requiem Mass. “It seemed appropriate,” said Fr Charlie, adding, “It’s one of the first prayers we learned at home. A prayer utterly familiar to Kevin from his daily Mass, and the morning and evening prayer of the Church which formed his daily prayer routine. It was surely a prayer that would have come to life for him in the Holy Land as he travelled through isolated places where Jesus would have gone off to pray to his Father.” But it was the words ‘Our Father’ that Fr Charlie singled out as the most important phrase of the prayer, noting that Jesus invites us into the intimacy of his divine family allowing us to address God as ‘Abba Father’, encouraging to pray with the confidence of a child before its father. And he went on: “If Jesus asks us to say Our Father it surely means that we never pray in isolation from the needs of all our brothers and sisters. While it is natural that our own needs our foremost in our prayers it can never be the whole agenda. The intercessory dimension of praying for others has to grow and grow. And so it is that today we put our own concerns to one side as we reach out to pray to the Lord for Fr. Kevin and also all those with whom he lived and worked, those who crossed his paths: those who were helped by him but also those who maybe were hurt by something he said or did through human frailty”. Fr Charlie also referenced the phrase ‘lead us not into temptation,’ noting that there is a great need to make this prayer in a world of so much violence and injustice. And finally he noted that, “The Our Father provides a sort of road map for Christian prayer and life. To let this prayer become part of we can follow St. Ignatius’ recommendation of praying it slowly, one phrase at a time.” He then invited all the congregation to take a few moment to pray the words ‘thy kingdom come’ silently and slowly together so that, he said, “God’s kingdom would take deeper root in our hearts and in our actions and finally praying for Kevin that he might be made ready to enter his eternal home in God’s kingdom.” Fr Kevin was cremated in Glasnevin Crematorium, after the funeral Mass. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

Obituary

Kevin Laheen, SJ

Born in 1919, Kevin’s early years were lived in the troubled around the founding of the state, growing up during the economic war of the 1930s and living through the second world war as a scholastic. They were authoritarian times in the Church and in the Society, a fact which did not favour a personal formation.
After school, along with seven others of his Belvedere year, he entered the novitiate in Emo. As the last survivor, he prayed daily for that group. Kevin followed the usual formation: an Arts degree in UCD, philosophy in Tullabeg, regency in Belvedere and theology in Milltown Park. It was there he was ordained in 1952.
His early ministry was in the schools: Mungret 1954-57 and Gonzaga 1957-62. Kevin was a good teacher and was games’ master in Gonzaga. His strong voice and commanding presence meant he had no problem with class discipline. Pupils knew that “ the RevKev” could fly into a temper. It did not happen often and as pupils I don’t think it bothered us much. We learned to adapt to the personalities of different teachers, most of whom we liked. However, years later I met a class mate at a union dinner, whose anger was aroused at the mention of Kevin’s name. As a pupil, this doctor never played rugby, but loved to kick a soccer ball about with a few others after school. As games’ master, Kevin forbade the playing of soccer. Rugby only.
It was in his early forties that Kevin joined the Mission staff, to which he would be assigned for a number of decades. This new apostolate was a good move for him. He had a desire to preach the gospel to adults willing to listen. I may be wrong, but his rector, Sean Hughes, might also have encouraged this new direction!
Kevin liked driving and I imagine he enjoyed the freedom to travel the length and breadth of the country and follow up his historical interests. He also enjoyed giving community retreats in convents.
It was during these years that he began to visit the Holy Land. Over many years he led groups there. Pilgrimages which opened a space in people’s hearts to imagine gospel stories in situ. In recognition of his work, he was made a knight of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. He was a council member of the Irish knights. They celebrated an annual Mass in Knock at which Kevin concelebrated until the year before he died. This group was a great source of support to him.
In later years he wrote books on Mungret and Tullabeg, the Mission Crosses of Killaloe as well as articles in Collectanea Hibernica so that there would be a historical record of work done by his brother Jesuits of earlier times. A final volume on Mungret was never completed. He wrote a life of St. Patrick and edited a prayer book on the Stations of the Cross with beautiful images.
The Society’s training during Kevin’s time of formation was heavily intellectual. The affective side was left to nature, one’s contemporaries and family. Unfortunately, Kevin’s spiritual and intellectual development was not integrated with his emotions. This was the tragedy of his life. Was Kevin ever able to talk in confidence and receive help?
It is hard truth to admit, but Kevin’s relationship with one woman caused trauma to her and her family. I suspect that this relationship may have traumatised him too and exacerbated his anger both towards himself and those with whom he lived. His increasing deafness was painful for both him and his community.
Due to complaints from a male member of staff, a moment was reached when it was felt that Kevin could no longer live in the Leeson St. Cherryfield, did not feel resourced to take him.
So began his final four plus years in Highfield Health Care on the Swords Rd. For Kevin, this was exile, no longer fit to live with his brothers. While he had a pleasant room, the whole unit was under lock and key. Most of the men suffered from some form of dementia. Highfield did have a chapel, but access would probably have been dependent on a member of staff accompanying him.
Two women friends, a Holy Faith sister, Marie Therese Carney and Nora Finnegan, a single woman, were his ever regular visitors. Jesuits also visited, but often found that Kevin was not there. Sr Marie Therese used take him out for lunch and later to her convent in Glasnevin where he would spend a few hours and celebrate Mass. Nora Finnegan used take out to lunch once a week.
Five weeks before he died, he celebrated his 100th birthday. It was an event that he looked forward to. I think he saw it as a sort of final accomplishment. It was celebrated fittingly in Highfield with Mass and a meal in the presence of Jesuits, family and friends.
As he approaches the Light of Truth, I feel sure that Kevin would want to acknowledge his failures, seek forgiveness and ask of our prayers. Even if little known to most of us, he was our brother.
Fr. Kevin brought many groups to the Holy Land to see the places where Jesus lYou, his friends in the order of the Holy Sepulchre who gave him such support in his old age shared his affection for the Holy Land which you express in supporting a school in Jordan.
Last week when I began to think of what gospel I should choose for Fr. Kevin’s Mass this gospel of Jesus teaching his disciples the Lord’s prayer came to me. It seemed appropriate.
It’s one of the first prayers we learned at home. A prayer utterly familiar to Kevin from his daily Mass, and the morning and evening prayer of the Church which formed his daily prayer routine. It was surely a prayer that would have come to life for him in the Holy Land as he travelled through isolated places where Jesus would have gone off to pray to his Father.
The most important phrase is surely the first: Our Father. Only Jesus can truly call God Father. He is his only Son. But Jesus invites us into the intimacy of his divine family allowing us to address God as Abba Father, encouraging to pray with the confidence of a child before its father.
If Jesus asks us to say Our Father it surely means that we never pray in isolation from the needs of all our brothers and sisters. While it is natural that our own needs our foremost in our prayers it can never be the whole agenda. The intercessory dimension of praying for others has to grow and grow. And so it is that today we put our own concerns to one side as we reach out to pray to the Lord for Fr. Kevin and also all those with whom he lived and worked, those who crossed his paths: those who were helped by him but also those who maybe were hurt by something he said or did through human frailty.
Our Father may your name be held holy: be treated with respect and reverence. Our relationship with God is a wonderful mixture of both intimacy and reverence.
Thy kingdom come, thy will be done....Jesus teaches his disciples and us too to put the things of God first: to pray for the coming of his kingdom of love and justice. It is a challenge to seek first the things of God and to trust that He will give us what is best for us. Ad maiorem Dei Gloriam: we seek God’s glory first and try not get in the way.
Give us this day our daily bread...how we need, day after day, for the Lord to nourish us in faith, hope and love.
Forgive us as we forgive others....a difficult prayer? Surely a grace to pray for. As Fr Kevin makes his final journey home to the Lord we pray that he may receive this grace.
Jim Tarpey....
Finally we pray to be led safely through temptation and delivered from evil. How great a need to make this prayer in a world of so much violence and injustice.
The Our Father provides a sort of road map for Christian prayer and life. To let this prayer become part of we can follow St. Ignatius’ recommendation of praying it slowly, one phrase at a time.
Let’s take a few moments to pray “thy kingdom come” silently, slowly repeating it again and again. Praying for ourselves that the God’s kingdom take deeper root in our hearts and in our actions and finally praying for Kevin that he might be made ready to enter his eternal home in God’s kingdom.
Pray for us, O holy mother of God that he might be made worthy of the promises of Christ. Pray for us, O holy mother of God that we too might one day be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Lavery, Patrick, 1927-2012, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/780
  • Person
  • 05 June 1927-04 February 2012

Born: 05 June 1927, Dublin
Entered: 22 September 1948, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1960, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 05 November 1977, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died 04 February 2012, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the Clongowes Wood College, Naas, Co Kildare community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1951 at Laval France (FRA) studying
by 1976 at Loyola Hall, Lahore, Pakistan (PAK MISS) working

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 147 : Spring 2012

Obituary

Fr Patrick (Paddy) Lavery (1927-2012)

5 June, 1927: Born in Dublin;
Early education in Clongowes Wood College, studied law for three years
22 September 1948: Entered Society at Emo
23 September 1950: First Vows at Emo
1950 - 1951: Studied French and Latin at Laval, France
1951 - 1954: Studied philosophy in Tullabeg
1954 - 1957: Regency: teacher in Belvedere
1957 - 1961: Studied theology in Milltown Park
28 July 1960: Ordained priest in Milltown Park
1961 - 1962: Tertianship in Rathfarnham Castle
1962 - 1963: Leeson Street: Messenger Office: treasurer
1963 - 1975: Belvedere: teacher and games
1975 - 1976: Lahore, Pakistan: chaplaincy work
1976 - 2012: Clongowes
1976 - 1980: Year master. Spiritual father to students. Assistant gamesmaster
5 November 1977: Final vows at Clongowes
1980 - 1996: Spiritual Father to Third Line; taught Religon and Latin. Gamesmaster
1996 - 2012: Resided at Cherryfield. Prayed for the Church and the Society
4 February 2012: Died at Cherryfield

Obituary : Michael Sheil
Paddy Lavery's people came from Armagh. After Partition his people came south and the family settled in Dublin, where Paddy was born in 1927. He attended Clongowes for his secondary education and graduated in 1945. He then spent three years studying law. before joining the Society at the age of 21 in 1948. Then he began. the usual Jesuit programme of study and formation - a year in France learning French and studying Latin in 1950 -- three years for philosophy in Tullabeg. He had a successful regency in Belvedere 1954-1957 - and went to Milltown for theology. He was ordained there in 1960. Thenceforth - apart a from one year's sabbatical spent in pastoral work in Pakistan - all of his working life was spent in two colleges - Belvedere (mid 60s to mid-70s) and in Clongowes - where he and I arrived together in the same year 1976. In both schools he made a marked contribution to the co-curriculars – especially rugby - cricket - and debating. With help from his great friend Robin Waters and other OBs – Belvedere was, for years, the top school at cricket. He was involved in Belvedere's rugby back-to-back Senior Cup wins in the early 70s – and, as Gamesmaster in 1978, presided over Clongowes' first Cup victory in 50 years.

In between his time in Belvedere and before coming to Clongowes, Paddy spent a sabbatical year in Pakistan doing pastoral work. He used often relate his experiences there - especially his meeting with Mother Theresa ........... even at times giving the impression that he was on first-name terms with her! Back in Ireland he was disappointed not to return to Belvedere. There he had made many friends, especially in the Old Belvedere Rugby and Cricket clubs, of which he was made an honorary life-member. However - when I met him at the airport I was immensely struck by his first words: If the Vow of Obedience means anything, this is it!

So to Clongowes he came - and there he is especially remembered as Spirtual Father. Everyone who knew him when they were small boys arriving here spoke of fond and grateful memories of his kindness to them in many different - gentle – and unsung ways. After news of his death spread messages came flooding in, paying tribute to Paddy's care of young students in need of help - of friendly encouragement - of calming wisdom - as they faced up to challenges which, for them, seemed insurmountable and called for courage and conviction. Paddy was there for them all – in his own quiet, somewhat patrician, way - full of interest in each one and in his family. Disapproval - if considered necessary - was usually a polished turn of phrase which indicated censure and the need to reform.

His great joy in the summer term was to sit on the balcony of the Higher Line Pavilion in the evening and watch the cricketers in the centre - as, in his own words, the sun was setting over the Castle! The boys were often heard to say, with a liberal quote of the poet, Fr Lavery's in his heaven - all's right with the world! He always seemed to be around during the holidays - and was a gracious and welcoming guide to all – former pupils - visitors – prospective parents - Eurolanguage students - Special Children Guests and Camp Clongowes. He was so proud of “his” home! He was special - not just in what he did - but in how he did it. In the early 90s – in his mid-60s - Paddy seemed destined to live out many more fruitful years of service in the Clongowes apostolate. He could, one might say, be looking forward to the pleasant evening sunset of a full and active life.

When, as young man, he had taken Vows in Emo - way back in September 1950 – Paddy was asked to be ready to give ALL – to give and not to count the cost - and he said YES ! Now - suddenly - one day in 1993 he was called to account – he suffered a sudden and gradually ever-consuming stroke which was to leave him deprived of all his physical independence. His YES way back in 1950 was to last for all of the past 18 years. 18 years - that was the length of what is called “the hidden life” of Jesus Christ. Of that "hidden life" the Gospels say – nothing. Nothing about how Jesus spent His early adolescent and adult years between 12 and 30. For Paddy his "hidden life” was to be in the twlight of a life that had been active and pastorally fruitful over the previous 40 years – and he was to lead a hidden existence.

Paddy's YES meant becoming dependent - increasingly so - unable to what he wanted - just like Jesus said to Peter by the lakeshore after the Resurrection: When you were young - you walked where you liked - but, when you grow old, someone else will lead you where you would rather not go! No one could have imagined where Jesus was calling Paddy to go. To the outsider his life became like Job's - the drudgery of a slave sighing for the shade ....... lying in bed wondering “When will it be day?” - and then “How slowly evening comes!” ......... “My life is but a breath and my eyes will never again see joy”. Those years must have seemed to pass slowly - so slowly. However – the mystery of God's working in his life witnessed to His working through Paddy in others. He was God's special gift to all who shared his unique dark night - and who drew strength from his courage and Faith in Jesus who said: Come to Me all you who labour and are overburdened - and I will give you rest. Shoulder My yoke and learn from Me - for I am gentle and humble of heart - and you will rest for your souls. He was a also special gift in the example he was to us all – as I used often remind him of that on my visits to him in Cherryfield - and I told him of happenings in “our” outside world and noted how - by the merest nod or shake of his head - everything had registered with him - even down to the smallest detail.

Eventually Paddy was to lose everything except his mind - as, Simonlike, he helped carry the cross - on his own long road to Calvary. St Paul speaks of how I am always full of confidence when we remember that, to live in the body, means to be exiled from the Lord - going as we do by Faith and not by sight. Many years ago - while I could still understand what he was trying to say - Paddy told me that he wanted to go ........... was ready to die – living out St Paul's words: I want to be exiled from the body and make my home with the Lord! But (like St Paul) - whether living in the body or exiled from it - intent on pleasing the Lord. And that is exactly what Paddy continued to do - as he waited -- and waited - and waited.

The active pastoral fruit of his twilight years was not to be - but the apostolic value of his new mission - along with his Brethren in Cherryfield - of praying for the Church and the Society of Jesus - was incalculable to a person gifted with the grace of Faith. Who knows how many people have been helped through Paddy's prayer-filled offering of his life during these past 18 hidden years as he sought to fight and not to heed the wounds ?

Those 18 years were greatly enriched by the extraordinary and tender care of the Staff at Cherryfield He was “Mr Mulliner” - with by far the longest stay in Cherryfield - a sojourn greatly enriched by the extraordinary care of the Staff at Cherryfield. In the early days of his stroke it was the Infirmary Staff here in Clongowes, who cared for Paddy before he left for Dublin. We can only bow our heads in awe at the thought of the look with which his eyes beheld the world around him - as he watched his companions pass on and and waited for his own call to come. He was like the watchman awaiting the dawn in Ps 129 - always in the same place in Cherryfield as people came and went. Latterly, he had as a companion Nora Clifford, a neighbour, who took it on herself simply to sit beside him as a sympathetic presence. She predeceased Paddy by a year.

Finally, on 4th February, Paddy was at last released from his suffering – still looked after by those who had become - not just carers for a helpless person - but also his friends. As his remains came up the front avenue on 6th February, the Family of Clongowes – Jesuits, Students, Staff and Past Pupils - stood in silent tribute to Paddy coming home. The students now in Clongowes were surprised to learn that Paddy was part of the Jesuit Community. Although they never knew him, the Students were honouring his contribution to a: previous generation – for he had to leave for Dublin before any of them were born. He would have taught - counselled - or coached - many of their Fathers in the mid-70s and the early 80s. The presence of a great number of his former pupils - from Clongowes as well as many from Belvedere (where he had made many lifelong friends) - testified to this. While residing in Cherryfield – he continued to be attached to us and he gave his brother - Jesuits here the gift of his prayer-filled support for their work.

On the following day he was buried in the Community cemetery down the avenue, joining so many of his brother-Jesuits - those who had taught him as a boy and those who shared his time in Clongowes. At the special request of his late brother, Philip, to have his ashes buried with his Jesuit brother, Philip's widow and her daughter came over from Seattle to fulfil that wish - and the two will share that space until we are all called home.

At the end of John's Gospel Jesus took Peter aside: Simon, son of John, do you love Me? To Paddy also: Do you love Me ? Both Peter and Paddy said Yes ! Then Jesus said: Come then - follow Me! ........... And to Paddy in particular: Well done, good and faithful servant – faithful in My service -- especially in these past 18 years - faithful in your patient waiting for Me to call you home. welcome into the joy of your Master and loving Lord. May he rest in peace.

Lawler, Brendan, 1909-1993, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/515
  • Person
  • 29 October 1909-16 June 1993

Born: 29 October 1909, Bunclody, County Wexford
Entered: 01 September 1926, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 17 July 1938, Innsbruck, Austria
Final Vows: 02 February 1944, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 16 June 1993, Our Lady’s Hospice, Dublin

Part of the Milltown Park, Dublin community at the time of death.

Eldest Brother of Donald - RIP 1984 and Ray - RIP 2001

Early education at Clongowes Wood College Sj

by 1933 at Valkenburg, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) studying
by 1936 at Innsbruck, Tirol, Austria (ASR) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 8th Year No 4 1933

Father T. Corcoran's labours in connection with the examinations for the Higher Diploma had scarcely concluded when he had to betake himself to Holland to preside at the second International Congress of Catholic Secondary Education. The meetings of the Congress took place at the Hague each day from 31st .July to 5th August.
Their Excellencies, the Bishops of Holland, were patrons of the Congress, which was attended by some 350 delegates representing the leading Catholic countries. Among the delegates were about 45 members of the Society from lands outside Holland. Prominent among the visitors were the Provincial of the Paris Province, with various Rectors and Prefects of Studies from our French Colleges. Père Yoes de la Brière, the Rectors of Brussels, Namur, Liege and other Belgian Colleges, Fathers Errandonea, Herrera and others from Spain,the French Oratorian Sabatier and various distinguished lay-men from Germany and Italy.
Cardinal Pacelli, in the name of the Holy Father, sent a long and cordial telegram of good wishes to the Congress , also the Nuncio Apostolic in Holland, who was prevented by serious illness from attending in person.
In the absence of the Nuncio the final allocution was delivered by the Bishop of Haarlem, after the Rector Magnificus of the University of Nijmegen and Father Corcoran, as President of the Congress had already spoken. Mr. J. O'Meara from Louvain Messrs. B. Lawler and C. Lonergan from Valkenburg acted as assistants to Father Corcoran at the Hague.
A splendid paper on “The Present Condition of Secondary Education in Ireland” was read by Dr. John McQuaid, the President of Blackrock College. All accounts agree in stating that the Congress was a brilliant success.
As the proceedings at the Hague coincided with the Biennial Conference of the World Federation of Education Associations, Father Corcoran was unable to be present at the functions in Dublin, but an important paper from his pen was read by Mrs McCarville, Lecturer in English in University College, Dublin. This paper expounded the Catholic philosophy of Education.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 77 : Summer 1994 & Interfuse No 82 : September 1995

Obituary

Brendan Lawler (1909-1993)

29th Oct. 1909; Born, Bunclody, Co. Wexford
Early education: Clongowes Wood College
Ist Sept. 1926: Entered the Society at Tullabeg
1928 - 1932: Rathfarnham - studying Science (biology) at UCD
1932 - 1935: Valkenburg, Holland, studying Philosophy
1935 - 1938: Innsbruck, studying Theology
17th July 1938: Ordained at Innsbruck
1939 - 1940: Tertianship, Rathfarnham
1940 - 1941: Tullabeg, Professor of Cosmology and Biology
1941 - 1943: 35 Lower Leeson Street, Private Study
1943 - 1962: Tullabeg - Professor of Cosmology and Biology. (From 1953 - '59 he was Rector)
1962 - 1968: Loyola House - Socius to Provincial
1968 - 1992; Milltown Park: Secretary, Institute of Theology/Philosophy, and Lecturer (Philosophy), (1982 Assistant Registrar)
1993: Cherryfield Lodge. Hospitalised in The Royal, Donnybrook and then in Our Lady's Hospice.
16th June 1993. Died Our Lady's Hospice.

For many members of the Irish Province the name of Brendan Lawlor is synonymous with memories of the philosophate in Tullabeg, Once can see him still on a dark day in the tiered lecture-room, reading from the yellowing pages of his cosmology notes or play-acting as to whether the continuum could be found in the drawer or under the table. These memories can be crowned with those of drowsy afternoon sessions with diverting slides portraying the innards of the amoeba. In retrospect one can only admire the patience and endurance of those who, after years of no mean scholastic attainment, accepted from the Society the “world without event” of life in Tullabeg.

Brendan had a distinguished scholastic career behind him when he came to Tullabeg as Professor of Cosmology and Biology in the autumn of 1943. He was one of those “stars” who had been picked out for a four-year Juniorate (1928-1932), ending up with a MSc in biology. In the autumn of 1932 he made his way with Con Lonergan to do his philosophy with the exiled Germans in Valkenburg, and then in 1935 both of them went on to join Donal O'Sullivan for theology in Innsbruck. It was typical of the man that he could spend those years so close to the drama of the rise of Hitler and the Anschluss of Austria and so rarely speak of these momentous events afterwards. Even the theology of the times was rarely mentioned by him, though Innsbruck in those years was the centre of “kerygmatic theology” and of the liturgical and catechetical renewal spearheaded by JA Jungmann. Within a short time of Brendan's leaving Innsbruck the house in Sillgasse was turned into the headquarters of the Gestapo, but Brendan by that time was safely back in Ireland doing further studies in Leeson Street.

It will come as a surprise to most people to realize that by far the longest period Brendan spent in one place was not Tullabeg but Milltown Park. He spent nineteen years in Tullabeg at a stretch, being Rector there from 1953 to 1959. He left the midlands in 1962 to become Socius to the Provincial (1962-68), and after those six years in Eglinton Road was assigned to Milltown Park, where he was to spend the next quarter of a century. For many years during this period he did some teaching in the area of logic, but his principal task was to look after the administrative staff of the Institute and to keep the scholastic records of the students. He was also responsible for organizing what came to be called “Saturday Theology”, a very successful programme of lectures for extra-mural students which, over a period of twenty years, introduced innumerable religious and laity to the mysteries of Vatican II.

For a person who in many respects was the quintessence of predictability, Brendan could be a source of hidden talents. The last instance of this came about only a few weeks before his death, when his community was presented with an amazingly competent landscape which Brendan had painted during occupational therapy in the hospice. Who would have thought that we had another Paul Henry in our midst? Then there was his early interest in the scriptures, which eventually bore fruit in his book, Epistles in Focus, widely read in Ireland at the time, and for many years the only scholarly book on scripture by a member of the Province. During his years as Professor in Tullabeg, he rarely, if ever, published anything in philosophy, but in his final years in Milltown he had some published work in Milltown Studies, includ ing one article of which he was particularly proud, “The Star of Implication” (Milltown Studies, no.5).

Those who knew Brendan in the two main periods of his life, that in Tullabeg and that in Milltown, will have been struck by the contrast between the two, especially if one was a scholastic in the earlier period. In Tullabeg he seemed constrained by the stricter regime of the times. In Milltown his natural humour and spirit of companionship blossomed, so that he became one of the most appreciated members of the community. He maintained amazingly good health, even after retirement, and took a great interest in all that was happening in the world, not least in the world of sport, Brendan before the television-set, with cigarette in hand, was one of the fixtures of Milltown life during those years. This continued up to the time that the onset of Parkinson's necessitated his hospitalization. The decline that set in developed with a speed that surprised us all. The disease took him from us within a matter of months, and so he died at the impressive age of 83. May he rest
in peace.

Ray Moloney

Lawton, Hilary, 1912-1984, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/4
  • Person
  • 4 April 1912-26 January 1984

Born: 04 April 1912, Richmond Hill, Cork City
Entered: 07 September 1929, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 13 May 1942, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1947, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 26 January 1984, Dublin, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson St, Dublin

Early education at CBC Cork and 1 year of Science at NUI before entry

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 59th Year No 2 1984

Obituary

Fr Hilary Lawton (1912-1929-1984)

Entered Tullabeg 7th September 1929. First vows 8th September 1931.
Juniorate, Rathfarnham 1931-33. Philosophy, Tullabeg 1933-36. Regency, Clongowes 1936-39. Theology, Milltown 1939-43; ordained 13th May 1942. Tertianship. Rathfarnham 1943-34. Apostolate: Clongowes: teaching, 1944-477; Prefect of studies, 1947-59; Rector, 1959-65. Crescent College: teaching, 1965-66; Prefect of studies, 1966-71. Crescent College Comprehensive: Administrative assistant, 1971-74. Loyola: Socius to Provincial, 1974-80. Leeson street: Minister, 1980-8l; Superior, 1981-84.
Hilary joined us for First Probation in September 1929 at Tullabeg. I can see him, a spruce slight young man in a bowler hat and light tweed coat, mounting the steps to the hall-door while we sat in the sunshine in the Spiritual meadow'. He was then the youngest of us all in years - and yet, at 17, somehow our senior; for we had, none of us, attained higher academic distinction than a Leaving Certificate or Matriculation, but Hilary had an Honours First Science qualification from UCC to his credit, with all the sophistication, real or imagined, that was festooned around such.
“Festoons” - that word, I think, sums up - one of the most engaging characteristics that we all can recall of Hilary - his festooning of his memoirs and adventures. Though one of the most private of men, he would tell many a tale of his boyhood, youth, and as years went by, of his later experiences - tales that gave rise to much enjoyment in his own family and a certain scepticism among his contemporaries and brethren. Yet there was always, as careful sifting revealed, a hard kernel of fact: the rest was an artistic verisimilitude' festooning the “bald and unconvincing narrative”.
Among the hard facts were indeed his being directed to the Society by the late Archbishop Finbar Ryan, OP, who was prior of the Dominicans in Cork when Hilary was a boy. Another: he played the organ in the Dominican church, Pope’s quay, Cork, being a student of the Royal College of Organists. He must have been quite an exceptionally brilliant school boy. He matriculated at the age of sixteen, was apparently considered by his teachers at “Christians' College, Cork”, suitable material to attempt an Entrance scholarship at Cambridge (this is the fact behind his working in the Cavendish laboratory and his “coxing of the College Eight”). Though he did qualify for an honours Science degree and was an excellent teacher of science in Clongowes, academic ambitions seemingly held no very great attraction for him.
Hilary's interest and competence in music - both organ and piano, and I believe the viola - has left quite a mark on the Province, notably in Clongowes, where he spent so many years. Organist as novice, junior, philosopher; choirmaster as a scholastic in Clongowes (where he followed another little remembered musician of the Irish Province, Fr Sydney Lennon † 1979); organist and choirmaster in Milltown, he trained many of us both in execution and appreciation of classical ecclesiastical music. As one who followed Hilary's footsteps as choirmaster in Clongowes and in Milltown, I can testify to the results of his training of the choirs which I took over from him. He was choirmaster, finally, of the choir of the Sacred Heart Church, The Crescent. Limerick: but then the great days of church music were fading, if they had not already faded, and scope for his gifts and interests were unhappily narrowed. Perhaps it is worth recording (for posterity!) that he and I collaborated in editing a Hymnbook for Clongowes. Mungret and our scholasticates ... Our hopes of a total acceptance of this product were never realised. One man's hymn is another man's horror!
I must leave to others a fuller appreciation of Hilary's work for Clongowes throughout his eighteen years there as Prefect of studies and Rector, (cf, the obituary notice in the Clongownian). One knew by report what he was doing in upbuilding the lay staff, in imaginative curriculum development, in the creation of one of the finest music schools, both choral and orchestral, in the country. Interspersed of course was the occasional account of his own doings from Hilary himself, never wanting in the “festoons” of “corroborative details”.
It would ill become me were I not to record that the burgeoning of Sacred Heart College, The Crescent into Crescent College Comprehensive Dooradoyle, would have been fraught with immense difficulties were it not for Hilary's calm, unperturbed, meticulous planning of the transfer. As the Headmaster's Administrative Assistant' - a post created for him by the Department of Education! - we had flawless “ignition and lift-off”. I think Hilary really enjoyed his short spell in Dooradoyle: and he regretted his return to the metropolis.
So much for his public career, so to speak. He was as I said a most private man, his stories of his life-adventures maybe only covering up his desire for privacy. As a friend he was ever-cheerful and even tempered. He enjoyed company; enjoyed his hobbies of photography and music-making; enjoyed the frequent visits to the ruined abbeys and castles which dot the counties of Limerick, Tipperary and Clare (how many he visited in some eight years!). We could and did go on villa together for twenty-odd years, and could year by year contemplate going (but never did go, unfortunately) on foot to Compostella for the feast of St James.
What more can I say? “He was my friend, faithful and true to me ...” May God have him in his keeping and may we be merry together in heaven.
SH

Lee, William M, 1915-1992, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/509
  • Person
  • 07 December 1915-04 June 1992

Born: 07 December 1915, Waterford City, County Waterford
Entered: 09 October 1934, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 30 July 1947, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1950, Sacred Heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 04 June 1992, St Vincent's Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death

by 1951 at Chikuni, Chisekesi, N Rhodesia (POL Mi) working - third wave of Zambian Missioners

◆ Companions in Mission1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Fr Bill went through the usual studies of the Jesuits, was ordained in 1947 and after tertianship was posted to Limerick. Plans were then afoot to send Irish Jesuits to what was then Northern Rhodesia (Zambia). Bill conceived a keen desire NOT to go there. He was just settling down in the Crescent when he received a letter telling him to get a medical check-up with a view of going to Northern Rhodesia. The Irish Jesuits had been asked to help out their Polish colleagues there. So in 1950, nine Irish Jesuits sailed from Ireland, including Fr Bill.

For many years, Fr Zabdyr had moved out from Chikuni, his base, in order to set up elementary schools in various places. In 1951, two of these places (Kasiya and Chivuna) became new mission stations. Kasiya was set up by Fr. Bill Lee in 1951, the year after he arrived in the country. Later in December, he was joined by Fr J Gill. A letter from Fr Bill to Fr Zabdyr dated 17 June 1951 reads:

‘I have been in “permanent residence” here since the beginning of May, more or less, and will continue so for the future. I am busy building my Mission-station and it is going fairly satisfactorily. A space has been cleared in the bush, foundations are down, a well dug in the river, and grass for thatching cut and piled. After that, things will go smoothly as far as I can foresee. Somewhere near the end of July the house will be finished as far as I can do it this year. I may have to wait until later for cement to make proper floors. lt will be a two-roomed house, with a small kitchen near it. In the meantime I have a class going each evening for Christians who have not married in church’.

When Fr Gill arrived and a 250cc motorbike was available, Fr Gill looked after the station and set out to visit the centres of Christianity within a radius of up to 30 miles. Bill was transferred to Fumbo and later to Chikuni where he taught and was Spiritual Father to the African Sisters. He was also, for a time, secretary to the Bishop of Lusaka.

Having spent seven years in Zambia, he returned to Ireland to Gonzaga College for 30 years, teaching physics etc. up to 1987. The remaining five years of his life he spent at University Hall and at 35 Lower Leeson Street. He died in St Vincent's Hospital on 4th June 1992.

Bill came from a large Waterford family and was distinctive among them, ‘he alone of the 10 children greeted orders with “Why” and all information with “How do you know”? and he always enjoyed a good argument as much as other children enjoyed a party. He endearingly retained these characteristics to the end’. He loved discussion and debate but his kindness, good humour and generosity were no less noticed and appreciated. He was a good teacher and had a marvellous rapport with his students who really loved him. He was a colourful member of his community, enjoying the interchange and contributing much to it. He always had a sense of wonder. As he watched a fellow Jesuit perform some simple 'magic' tricks, he would be enthralled and laugh.

In pastoral work he was most successful, if somewhat diffident. Indeed he was suspicious of those who trafficked in certainties. Nor was he one for laying down an inflexible code of behaviour. He accepted people as he found them and in whatever circumstances they were in. He was keen to help them to make sense of their lives in their own way and to give their own meaning to their lives. He never entertained the idea that he could solve all people's problems but he did try to help others to live more easily with those human and religious problems that everyone experiences and that are beyond solution in this life. He was especially good with those whose faith was fragile, whose link with the Church was tenuous or whose practice was spasmodic. He himself lived happily with questions unanswered and problems unsolved but with the absolute certainty that the day would come when he would get his answers and solutions.

Pulmonary fibrosis was what took him in the end. Actually he had planned to visit Zambia with his sister in the autumn of the year he died but the Lord had other plans for him.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 75 : Christmas 1993 & Interfuse No 82 : September 1995

Obituary

Fr Bill Lee (1915-1992)

7th Dec. 1915: Born, Waterford
Early education: Christian Bros. Schools, Waterford up to Matriculation
9th Oct. 1934: Entered the Society at Emo
1936 - 1939: Juniorate, Rathfarnham
1939 - 1942: Philosophy at Tullabeg
1942 - 1943: Teaching at Clongowes
1944 - 1948; Theology at Milltown Park
1947: Ordained
1948 - 1949: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1950 - 1957: Northern Rhodesia (Zambia). Having studied the language, he served in Kasia, Fumbo, Chikuni, etc.
1957 - 1987: Gonzaga, teaching Physics, etc. (In 1981 he took a sabbatical in the U.S.A.)
1987 - 1989: University Hall - adj. Prefect; also keeper of Records, Milltown Institute
1989 - 1991: 35 Lower Leeson Street, Minister in 1990. Assistant Registrar at Milltown Institute and teaching Latin
4th June 1992: Died at St. Vincent's Hospital, Dublin

William Lee, known to his family as Willie and to his Jesuit brethren as Bill, was bom in 1916 in Waterford where he spent most of his youth. He was one of ten children of whom Sheila, Teddy and Peggy survive and to them we offer our sincerest sympathy. They will miss him terribly. Our sympathy also to his nephews, nieces and other relatives amongst whom he was greatly beloved and in whom he took a keen and warm avuncular interest. Within the family he is remembered as being distinctive: he alone of the ten children greeted all orders with “Why?”, all information with “How do you know?” and enjoyed an argument as other children enjoyed a party. He endearingly retained these characteristics to the end. He was educated in Waterpark College by the Christian Brothers whom he held in the highest esteem and of whom he had the happiest memories. As a student, he was most capable, a voracious reader and utterly stubborn in refusing to leam or study any thing that did not capture his interest. Attempts to break this habit by carrot and stick proved fruitless.

He had little or no contact with Jesuits until a Fr. Mackey descended on Waterpark College to give the boys a retreat. It appears that this man was a famous recruiting sergeant for the Jesuits in the '20s and '30s and he added Bill to his list. Bill's par ents received the news that he was to join the Jesuits as a sign of lamentable judgement. After all he had acquired a good position in the bank, and if he was thinking of the priesthood or religious life, did he not know the Franciscans, the diocesan priests and the Christian Brothers? So why join the Jesuits of whom he knew nothing? Characteristically, the more his parents opposed it, the more Bill warmed to the idea. He cut the argument short one day, by getting on his bike in Waterford ad cycling to Dublin. He arrived at Leeson Street to meet Fr. Mackey. Just as the good father was extolling the virtues of the religious life in general and those of the Jesuits in particular, Bill, tired out by his joumey, fell fast asleep. When the startled priest discovered the reason for this, he was suitably impressed and sent Bill to the Provincial with a strong recommendation. By the time Bill returned to Waterford, he had, more or less, signed on. The family's disappointment at his decision was mitigated by the conviction that he would soon be sent home from the Jesuit novitiate. They did not put a tooth in it: they told him that the Jesuits, of all people, would not put up with his incessantly asking, “Why?”, “Wherefore?” and “How do you know?”. However, Bill proved not to be one of nature's natural martyrs. He reserved his taste for robust debate for his fellow novices, one of whom reported that going out with Br. Lee for a discussion was like walking across a mine field. However, if Bill made his mark as a lover of debate and discussion, his kindness, good humour and generosity were no less noticed and appreciated.

After the novitiate, he began his studies that he greatly enjoyed, obtaining a good honours degree in Arts, and then in Philosophy in Tullabeg, and completed what was then known as the long or higher course in Theology. He was ordained in 1947, Between Philosophy and Theology he showed great promise as a teacher in Clongowes and The Crescent. His theological studies left him with an abiding interest in the subject. For him, theology was not merely an academic or intellectual interest. He read it seriously as a means of making sense of his beliefs and convictions. If in latter years his reading tended to concentrate on Schillebeeckx, Kung and the more unorthodox theologians, this reflected his moderate esteem for orthodoxy. He completed his formation with tertianship in Rathfarnham Castle. Plans were afoot to send some Irish Jesuits to what was then Northern Rhodesia. Bill conceived a keen desire NOT to go there, was greatly relieved not to be sent and in these circumstances found a posting in Limerick quite attractive. He was just settling down comfortably to life in the Crescent when he received a note from the Provincial's assistant telling him to get a medical check with a view to going to Northem Rhodesia.

He went in 1950. He was one of the pioneering group, and experienced all the difficulties of establishing the mission. He built a mission station physically with one or two others, taught, spent some time as secretary to the Bishop and picked up a touch of malaria.

He returned to Ireland in 1957 to teach in Gonzaga, which was founded as he was leaving for Africa. He joined a gifted staff that was conscious that the school was doing something new in Irish education. He appreciated the refreshing and innovative ethos of the place but was critical of the role of science in the curriculum. He rightly considered that it did not enjoy a sufficiently central place in the new school and that science should be at the heart of 20th century liberal education. He persuaded the authorities to permit him to go to the USA for six summers to obtain a degree in Physics. He set up the science department in Gonzaga, initially in a loft over converted stables, and introduced a demonstration course in science. This was hardly ideal but was all that resources allowed. Over the years he was joined by excellent teachers and science gradually assumed a central place in the curriculum but by the time the splendid new science wing was built he had retired. However, he was certainly the founding father of the now flourishing science department in Gonzaga.

He was a very good teacher, albeit with a short fuse at times and with less than an unerring way with experiments. He had a marvellous rapport with his students by whom he was much beloved. He was deeply interested in his subject, and had broad intellectual interests that enabled him not merely to teach but to educate.

Bill, however, was appreciated for what he was, rather than for what he did: humane, kindly, tolerant and unpretentious. There was about him something difficult to define but palpable to experience; one did not relate to him as a teacher or a cleric. He did not, as many clerics do, give the impression that he was fulfilling a role or assuming a function. He was very much the human face of the clerical and religious life. He was immensely popular in the staff room and was a colourful member of the community life. He was clubable, enjoying and contributing much to community life. He had his own style. He seemed to “sniff” the general drift of conversation and then assume a position against the commonly held view. The more vigorous the argument, the more pleased he seemed to be. While some found his style more attractive than others, it was salutary for those who took themselves too seriously.

He left Gonzaga in 1987 after 30 years and moved to University Hall and then to Leeson Street while working in The Milltown Institute as Bursar, Assistant Registrar and teacher of Latin, To his colleagues in Milltown he was a popular and lively companion. He was Minister for a year in Leeson Street in addition to his tasks in Milltown and was always ready and happy to supply in the Barrett Cheshire Home where he had the affection and respect of the residents.

In pastoral work he was most successful, if somewhat diffident. He was not one for passing on certainties. Indeed, he was suspi cious of those who trafficked in certainties. Nor was he one for laying down an inflexible code of behaviour. He accepted people as he found them and in whatever circumstances they were. He was keen to help them to make sense of their lives in their own way and to give their own meaning to those lives. He never enter tained the idea that he could solve peoples' problems but he did try to help people to live more easily with those human and reli gious problems that we all have and that are beyond solution in this life. He related well to the dedicated and practising Christians in the Teams of Our Lady who so much appreciated him. The presence of the residents of the Barrett Cheshire Home, who went to so much trouble to be at his funeral, reflects their appreci ation of a man who unostentatiously and uncondescendingly con veyed his understanding of those whom providence left gravely disadvantaged. He was especially good with those whose faith was fragile, whose link with the Church was tenuous or whose practice was spasmodic. He was helped in dealing with such peo ple by his awareness that Faith and its consequences are a gift and so he tended to be more surprised by their presence than by their absence. He himself lived happily with questions unan swered and problems unsolved but with the absolute certainty that the day would come - and for him it has - when he would get his answers and solutions. However, should they turn out to be the orthodox ones, he will, I suspect, be bitterly disappointed.

About a year ago, the pulmonary fibrosis that was to prove fatal was diagnosed. This restricted his activity greatly, and consider able damaged his quality of life. The signs were there for all to see. The work in Milltown became a little too much for him. He frequently and uncharacteristically absented himself from community recreation. He went to his sisters on Fridays and Sundays armed with a video as the effort to keep up his usual rate of conversation waned. But he retained his spark and interest in life. He had acquired a second hand computer shortly before going into hospital and was happily working on it when he got his fatal attack. He had planned to visit Zambia this Autumn with his sister Peggy and generally was looking forward rather than looking back.

We will miss his colourful manner, kindly personality, and gen uine goodness but he has left us the happiest memories of a good life lived to the full.

Lehmacher, Gustav, 1885-1963, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1566
  • Person
  • 03 June 1885-26 January 1963

Born: 03 June 1885, Walluf, Darmstadt, Hesse, Germany
Entered: 13 April 1904, Exaeten, Limburg, Netherlands - Germaniae Province (GER)
Ordained: 27 August 1916
Professed: 02 February 1920
Died: 26 January 1963, Maring-Noviand, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany - Germaniae Inferioris Province (GER)

by 1940 came to Leeson St (HIB) writing and Censor 1939-1946
by 1947 came to Tullabeg (HIB) writing 1946-1948

Leonard, John A, 1912-1992, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/477
  • Person
  • 22 January 1912-08 January 1992

Born: 22 January 1912, Dublin
Entered: 03 September 1930, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1944, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1947, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 08 January 1992, Fethard, County Tipperary.

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death

Brother of Paul Leonard - RIP 2001; Nephew of Patrick Leonard - RIP 1909 (Scholastic)

Early education at Belvedere College SJ and Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1936 at Vals, France (TOLO) studying

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 75 : Christmas 1993 & Interfuse No 82 : September 1995

Obituary

Fr Jack Leonard (1912-1992)

Jack Leonard was bom in 1912 in Dublin, the eldest of five children of whom Miriam and Paul survive. He was educated in the Holy Faith School, Glasnevin, Belvedere and Clongowes Wood College. Of these, Clongowes held pride of place in his heart, at least until he joined the staff of Belvedere. His memory of the Belvedere of his schooldays was not flattering: “A place in which there was much fun but little leaming”, he used to say. When he was a young scholastic the Rector of Belvedere, a fanatical Belvederian, teased him - a dangerous past-time - by saying that the best of the Leonard family were his sister and his young brother, Paul. “No doubt they are, Father”,, Jack replied. “They are the only members of the family who did not go to Belvedere”.

In all his schools he was notably able, successful and mischievous. A mischievous rogue he remained until the end. His old friend, Chris Heron, told me that shortly after Jack became Prefect of Studies in Belvedere, his son came home and told him that Jack had brilliantly caught him out in some schoolboy prank. Chris told his son that he was dealing with a poacher turned gamekeeper and that there was nothing a schoolboy could think of doing that the Prefect of Studies had not done himself as a boy.

One of Jack's characteristics was the number of friendships formed in his schooldays and retained throughout his life. He had great capacity for making and keeping friends, and for making friends with his friends' children. In this way he became a member of many families that will miss him greatly.

In 1930, with 29 others, Jack entered the novitiate in Emo. Of the 30, his life-long friend, Donal Mulcahy, Martin Brenan and Mattie Meade survived him. After Emo, he went to Rathfamham and UCD where he obtained a first class degree in English. He enjoyed those years under the benign and civilised rectorship of TV Nolan. He then went to Vals to study Philosophy. There he developed his knowledge and love of the French language of which he was to become a masterful teacher. His proficiency in French caused a French Jesuit to remark many years later that Jack's French was almost too correct for a native. This was a criticism which all of us could bear with equanimity. He greatly appreciated his professors in Vals, the course of study he pursued and the general ambiance of the place. There, too, he formed many, long-lasting relationships. He was fond of telling a mischievous story of those years, Seemingly the Irish Provincial of the time heard of some little escapade Jack got up to. The Provincial, if the stories of him are true, was a petty man of monumental dullness, the antithesis of Jack. He wrote to Jack to say that he could not sleep at night lamenting the fact that he had sent him to France. As Jack told the story it was clear that he got much pleasure from the thought of this dull, little man in Gardiner Street tossing and turning throughout the night on his account.

Having completed his Philosophy, Jack went to the Crescent for two years and Clongowes for one where he began to demonstrate his skills as a teacher. Then he went to Militown, a place for which he retained little affection, where he was ordained in 1944. His contemporaries at this time would have seen him as gregarious, witty, with a keen mind and sharp tongue, that he used to effect on friend and foe alike, and an excellent raconteur, who, of course, did not scorn poetic license. But, behind the sophisticated and somewhat flippant exterior, was a deeply serious religious.

His first appointment after ordination was to Clongowes in 1946, where he remained until 1961. These were years of immensely effective and productive work. He was an outstanding teacher. Like all good teachers, he was the master of his subject, diligent in preparation, careful in reviewing progress and interested in his pupils. But Jack was more than a good teacher, he was superb. His intellectual ability and broad intellectual interests enabled him to open up new vistas for his students, enthuse the better ones and leave all with a deep appreciation of what he taught and of himself as a teacher. One of those students, an academic of distinction, remarked that if the had leamed nothing in Clongowes but what he learned from Jack's following of “red herrings” he would have had an excellent education, so broad was Jack's reading and so keen his intelligence. In this period of his life he made many friends. Relationships matured from casual acquain tances of master and pupil into deep and enduring friendship. There are many of that generation of Clongowians who sadly lament the passing of a loyal and generous frend. During these years he was in constant demand as a retreat giver to religious, priests and laity. He was an accomplished spiritual director, particularly of lay people. He had the gift of enabling one to see one's problems more clearly, to solve those that had a solution and to live with the many that were insoluble.

In 1961 he went to Belvedere and in the following year he was appointed Prefect of Studies. This was at the end of an era. An ethos was collapsing in Ireland, in the Church and among the Jesuits and a different ethos was emerging to which Jack was implacably hostile. In the minds of many he is defined in terms of that hostility. Certainly, he was far too sweeping in his condemnation of anything of which he disapproved and far too sharp in his criticism of those with whom he disagreed. However, during his time as Prefect of Studies he laid the foundations of much of what is excellent in Belvedere today. Above all, he recruited excellent young men for the staff. He did not merely hire them, he coached them, encouraged them and supported them staunchly. He cultivated in them the skills and values that he himself possessed as a teacher and they responded splendidly. One of these men celebrated his twenty fifth year in Belvedere recently and at the celebration he recalled eloquently and accurately the esteem, admi ration and reverence in which Jack was held by the lay staff. In addition to the care of the staff, Jack built up and strengthened whole areas of the curriculum: Maths., Science and, surprisingly, Irish.

When he completed his term as Prefect of Studies, he retumed to the class room as a teacher from 1968 until 1976. It was then that I got to know him, observe his excellence as a teacher and profit from his advice. The presence of so many of his pupils from the seventies at his funeral Mass was a testimony to the esteem in which he was held by yet another generation of students, some of whom have told me that Jack's teaching was the best they experienced not only during their secondary schooling but in all their years of education. He taught French, Latin and Religion, As a teacher of Religion he was old fashioned and trailed his old fashioned coat - often outrageously - but he was an effective teacher of Religion in difficult times, more effective than many who were more up to date. He was effective not just in transmit ting knowledge but also in the transmission of values and atti tudes: a fact attested to by some who went from Belvedere to the priesthood and religious life.

After Belvedere he went to Leeson Street where he became Superior in 1984 for six years. There he was in charge of the elderly community and was exceptional in his care for the sick and the old. For the past year or so he had begun to fail not greatly but perceptibly. The end came unexpectedly. It was a blessing in many ways. He died in the house of the sister he loved and in the company of his beloved niece, Ida. He did not have the suffering and humiliation of a long drawn out sickness and was in rela tively good for to the end.

So we salute a superb teacher, an able administrator, an excel lent retreat giver and a shrewd spintual director but first and fore most a zealous priest and religious, a man of simple faith, of unshakeable hope and of profound love of the Lord and Master he served so well and in whose company he must surely be rejoicing in that place of peace and happiness that was prepared for him since before the foundation of the world.

Noel Barber SJ

Leonard, Paul V, 1924-2001, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/554
  • Person
  • 14 April 1924-29 March 2001

Born: 14 April 1924, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1942, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1956, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 05 November 1977, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 29 March 2001, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Leeson St, Dublin community at the time of death.

Brother of John A Leonard - RIP 1992; Nephew of Patrick Leonard - RIP 1909 (Scholastic)

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 108 : Special Edition 2001

Obituary

Fr Paul Leonard (1924-2001)

14th April 1924: Born in Dublin
Early education in Holy Faith, Glasnevin and Clongowes Wood College
7th Sept. 1942: Entered the Society at Emo
8th Sept. 1944: First Vows at Emo
1944 - 1947: Rathfarnham - studying Arts at UCD
1947 - 1950: Tullabeg - studying Philosophy
1950 - 1953: Belvedere College, Teaching
1953 - 1957: Milltown Park - studying Theology
31st July 1956: Ordained at Milltown Park
1957 - 1958: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1958 - 1960: Eglinton Rd - Assist. Director Marian Cong.
1960 - 1961: Belvedere - Assist. Director Marian Cong.
1961 - 1962: Manresa - Assist. Director Marian Cong.
1962 - 1994: Leeson Street - Editor of Messenger and National Secretary (later Director) of the Apostleship of Prayer (until 1989)
1977 - 1981: Superior
5th Nov. 1977: Final Vows
1982 - 1983: Sabbatical year - Mainly in California
1988: Vice-Superior
1990 - 1991: Research for Province Health Delegate
1991: 1993: Health Delegate Health & 'Troisième Age' Delegate; Writer
1994 - 1996: Cherryfield Lodge - Superior, Health & Troisième Age Delegate
1996 - 2001: Leeson Street - Health & Troisième Age Delegate (until 1998)
1997 Mini-sabbatical - writer

Paul had a severe stroke in 1996 and was admitted to Cherryfield, where he made a very good recovery. He then went back to Leeson Street, where he enjoyed reasonably good health until July 1999. He was admitted at that time to Cherryfield with loss of balance and had a fairly good quality of life up to last November, when his general health began to deteriorate gradually. He was admitted to St. Vincent's on March 19th 2001, and died peacefully in the hospital on 29th March 2001.

Brendan Murray preached at Paul's Funeral Mass....

Fr Paul Leonard, whose loss we mourn today and whose life we celebrate in this Eucharist, was a man of many gifts. For thirty years or so, he was known to a wide public as a fine writer, a skilful editor, and an eloquent preacher, who graced the pulpit of this Church on many occasions. At the same time, he was known to a wide circle of friends and colleagues as a compassionate counsellor and an efficient administrator. Throughout his life as a Jesuit, he was content to follow the counsel of Saint Ignatius by placing his talents at the service of others and by giving freely what he had freely received.

For twenty-seven years, from 1962 to 1989, Paul was National Director of the Apostleship of Prayer and Editor of the Messenger. During that time he navigated a safe passage through the turbulent waters created in the wake of the Second Vatican Council. As the changing circumstances of the sixties forced many religious magazines to stop publication, Paul guaranteed the survival of the Messenger by an astute mixture of caution and innovation,

He adapted the style and contents of the magazine to the new theological and pastoral orientations of Vatican II. He introduced the new technologies that were being developed in the printing world. He engaged the services of an expert designer and elicited contributions from many young writers and photographers while maintaining the highest editorial standards and achieving record levels of circulation.

In 1985 he took the expensive and risky step of changing the Messenger from black and white print, and decking that venerable old lady out in bright new colours. Three years later, in 1988, he presided over the nation-wide celebrations of her centenary. For Paul, that was a proud achievement. And so too was the effort he put in to promoting the canonisation of Claude de la Colombiere, the friend of St Margaret Mary Alacoque, and the great promoter of devotion to the Sacred Heart.

If, for obvious reasons, Claude de la Colombiere was one of his favourite saints, one would also have to say that Francis de Sales was never far behind. The frequency with which he quoted de Sales in his writing, or referred to him in his conversation, indicated that he had a special affection for, and indeed a special affinity with, that most lovable of saints. Perhaps that's not too surprising when we recall that Francis de Sales was once described as “a gentleman who was a saint, and a saint who was a gentleman”.

Paul, of course, would never have seen himself as a saint or allowed anyone to describe him as one. However, he would, I think, have been content to be accepted as a gentleman, and certainly as a man of faith. For Paul's faith was rooted deeply in his being and was centred firmly on the person of Jesus Christ. In the light of that faith, he saw himself as one who was in constant transition from the sorrow of sin to the joy of forgiveness; he saw his mission as a calling to present the good news of the Gospel to others, not as a burden to be borne, but as a love-song to be sung.

Paul was a practical man, whose faith expressed itself in his abiding love for his family, his deep appreciation of his friends, his loyalty to the Church, his fidelity to his vocation, his affection for his Jesuit colleagues, his passion for justice, his compassion for the poor and his life-long devotion to prayer.

Anytime you visited Paul in the Jesuit Nursing Home, Cherryfield Lodge, you were likely to find him with his breviary on his lap or his rosary beads in his hands. Those beads had been bequeathed to him by his elder brother, Father Jack, who in turn had received them over seventy years ago from their beloved Aunt Hannah, a saintły Carmelite nun,

One of the great gifts God gave to Paul was a facility in prayer. Another, perhaps greater gift, was his ability to help others to pray. Those who knew Fr. Paul Leonard will remember him as a modest, unassuming man; cheerful and friendly in his manner, moving quietly through life with a firm sense of purpose. They will remember him also for his sense of humour, which was playful rather than hurtful; and, like his taste in sherry, dry rather than sweet.

Paul liked to recall the circumstances in which the Sacred Heart Messenger came into being and to record his admiration for the wily resourcefulness of its founder, Fr James Cullen. He liked to point out that the birth of that popular magazine, a paragon of rectitude in the eyes of many, was tarnished somewhat by a tinge of illegitimacy. It had reached a circulation of 2000 before the Provincial of the time became aware of that development.

And when Fr Cullen asked him for financial assistance he responded, not with a munificent grant, but with a mişerly loan of the sum of £1. That loan was still outstanding during Paul's term as Editor and when I asked him once if he intended to repay it, he said, “Certainly, as soon as we can afford it!”

Shortly after Paul retired from his position as Editor of the Messenger, the Provincial found a new outlet for his administrative skills and for his delicate sensitivity to the needs of others. He was appointed as a special assistant with responsibility for the care of the elderly and the sick. It was a position for which he was well suited and which he fulfilled with great distinction.

During his term of office he brought the care of the elderly and the sick up to professional standards and introduced many innovations, including the restructuring of Cherryfield Lodge. His most important contribution, however, was the engagement of a very caring and gifted nursing staff who, in God's providence, were there to look after Paul himself in 1996 when he was recovering from a severe stroke and again in 1999 when failing health compelled him to take up permanent residence.

Throughout his life Paul always enjoyed that inner freedom which allowed him to show his love for others and to accept their love in return. He remained that way to the end, always grateful for the affection that was lavished on him by his family and friends and Jesuit confreres, and by the many angels of mercy who nursed him.

Little, Arthur, 1897-1949, Jesuit priest and writer

  • IE IJA J/32
  • Person
  • 31 March 1897-05 December 1949

Born: 31 March 1897, Dublin
Entered: 31 August 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1929, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1934, t Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 05 December 1949, Milltown Park, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Studied for BA Classics, 1st Class Honours at UCD

by 1924 in Australia - Regency at Riverview, Sydney
by 1932 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
As a regent, Arthur Little taught at Riverview, 1923-26, where the bright and brash Riverview boys turned his classes into chaos. After tertianship at St Beuno's, Little spent the major part of his life as a philosophy professor at Tullabeg. He was a very skilled thinker as well as being an excellent musician and wrote on aesthetics and poetry.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 25th Year No 1 1950

Obituary

Fr. Arthur Little (1897-1914-1949)

Fr. Arthur Little was born in Dublin on 31st March, 1897. He was educated at Belvedere and Clongowes. His early life in the Society followed the usual course : Noviceship (Tullabeg) 1914-16; then Juniorate (Tullabeg 1 year, Rathfarnham 3 years) where he obtained a first class Honours M.A. in Classics ; Philosophy (Milltown) 1920-23 ; Colleges (Riverview) 23-26; Theology (Milltown) 26-30, where he was ordained Most Rev. Dr. Goodier, S.J; Tertianship (St. Beuno's), his Instructor being Fr. Joseph Bolland, the present English Assistant.
Prior to Tertianship he taught for one year in Clongowes; after it he professed Philosophy - Psychology and Theodicy - for 14 years in Tullabeg (1932-46). From 1946 to his death he was in Leeson St, as “Scriptor”. The mortal disease which brought about his premature death at the height of his powers, prevented him from taking up a professorship of Theology at Milltown Park, to which the 1949 Status bad assigned him. He died on 5th December.

Works :
An Epic Poem on the Passion : “Christ Unconquered”.
Broadcast talks on Catholic Philosophy : “Philosophy without Tears”
“The Nature of Art or The Shield of Pallas”.

Shortly before his death he had completed a detailed study of Plato's influence on the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas : “The Platonic Heritage of Thomism”. This book will be published shortly. An advanced copy of it reached Fr. Little a few days before his death. He was a regular contributor to “Studies”, “Irish Monthly” and other periodicals.

An Appreciation :
In the premature death of Fr. Arthur Little, after months of severe suffering, the Province has lost its most brilliant member. He possessed a remarkably wide range of gifts and some of them in a high degree. He was a classical scholar, a philosopher, a poet, a musician, a critic of art, a writer, a wit. So remarkable an endowment yould easily have made him a rather formidable person one to be admired from a distance, were these gifts not completed and balanced by an irrespressible sense of humour and an oddity and whimsicality of manner and demeanour which made him. emphatically a “character”, and a most loveable one at that. For twelve years he was professor of philosophy at Tullabeg, and he did more than any other one man to build up in that infant scholasticate a tradition of sound, solid doctrine. His first subject was psychology, but he soon came to theodicy which was his favourite treatise. He had arrived in Tullabeg without any very definite system but with a certain leaning to Scotism. But, after a short contact with the senior member of the staff he was suddenly converted to Thomism. The conversion was complete and final. He entered into the thought of St. Thomas not merely without any difficulty but with enthusiasm. He was an “anima naturaliter Thomistica”. But he was singularly free from the acrimony of a convert to his abandoned oracle.
He gave himself entirely and untiringly to his work as a professor, and he was perfectly happy as a lecturer. It might be thought that a man of such imagination, a man with the sensibility of a poet, might have given play to these gifts in his treatment of philosophy. But the truth was that when he lectured on psychology or theodicy he was always the metaphysician. He gave his class pure undiluted Thomistic thought. He spared them nothing of the most rigid, the stiffest scholastic method. His lectures were close reasoned, exacting, with no appeal to the imagination. His codex was as forbidding to the unintiated as the Metaphysics of Aristotle, and it needed the comment of the master to draw out its riches. He paid his pupils the formidable compliment of considering them to be on the level of his own austere height of thought and method. And his pupils appreciated the compliment and had for him an admiration that was often an enthusiasm.
In his lectures on the history of philosophy his literary powers could find scope, and what an entertaining subject he could make of it can be judged from his broadcast talks, published as “Philosophy Without Tears”, and from his articles in Studies. He did not read widely and that was a weakness in his position, but he thought out every point in his system and had made a coherent synthesis. He was an indefatigable worker and always sat at his desk. One wondered where he got the energy for this unremitting thought on so difficult a subject. It did not seem to come from the usual sources, because he ate about as much as a robust sparrow and for weeks at a time did not stir out of the house. That devotion to his work was not the lest debt which Tullabeg owes to Fr. Arthur.
But this metaphysician was also a poet. His “Christ Unconquered” is an ambitious epic poem on the Passion. He deliberately followed the tradition of the epic, especially as handled by Virgil and Milton, with its speeches, councils, episodes. He professed to have made Virgil his model, but actually the resemblance to Milton in diction, metre and general style was evident in every page and caused the professional critics to see in it an amazingly clever imitation and thus succeeded in closing their eyes to the great merits and the true individuality of this remarkable poem. The main defect is that he has put too much theology into it and theology is a recalcitrant medium for the poet, and certainly parts of it are heavy going. But on the whole it has a great distinction of style ; and there are many passages of great beauty which will not easily die. In fact such passages suggest that his truest vein was the lyric.
But some will think that be was still greater as a prose writer. Certainly his prose, so much of which appeared in Studies and the Irish Monthly, was of a high order, strong, distinctive, brilliant, witty.
If he had been put at writing as his professional work, he would undoubtedly have become a man of wide reputation, of the eminence of Fr. D'Arcy or Mgr. Knox. But even as things fell out it looked as if his day as a writer had come when he was taken away from philosophy. He seemed to be about to reap the harvest of the long years thought and study in that little room on the top storey in Tullabeg. Books and articles began to come from his pen in the short time he spent at Leeson St. He was a regular contributor to Studies. He finished a profound philosophical study on aesthetics, “The Shield of Pallas”, and up to the last he was engaged on a study of the Platonic element in St. Thomas, an advanced copy of which was put into his hands on his death bed. The book is a genuine contribution to the subject and is the fruit of a long study of his two favourite masters. All things then pointed to a rich yield of the labours of years, when God called him.
And what can one say of those personal gifts which made him so pleasant a companion - the originality of mind, the power to see sudden and often absurd resemblances, the brilliance and wit of his conversation? His wit bubbled up spontaneously and played about all subjects and his sense of humour was irrepressible. How inadequate are a few remembered examples to convey these things to those who did not know him! He is lecturing on the nature of a spirit and has shown that they have not even the principle of extension a punctum, and then he says solemnly “We must admit reluctantly that the Angels are most unpunctual beings”. He meets a Tullabeg colleague away from home and says “Dr. Livingstone I presume”. He used to say that in a detective story and he was a regular reader of them - he hated to be fobbed off at the last page with an accident or a suicide but wanted a decent clean murder. And to the end his good humour and wit did not neglect him,
“A fellow of infinite jest, Horatio”.
We may safely conjecture that in Heaven he will spend much of his time - he would correct me and say his aevum - in the company of two St. Thomases - the Angelical Doctor and St. Thomas More.
His joyous temperament lifted him above all bitterness and there was not a grain of malice in his make-up. He was an exemplary religious. He was highly esteemed as a giver of retreats. He was a man of the highest spiritual principles, and the sufferings of the last months of his life, borne with a patience and a joyous resignation which produced a deep effect on all who came near him were a manifestation of what his religion and vocation meant to him.
“Anima eius in refrigerio”. R.I.P.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Arthur Little 1897-1949
In the premature death of Fr Arthur Little on November 5th 1949, the Irish Province lost its most brilliant member. He was Professor for fourteen years in Tullabeg, where he built up by his zeal and talents, a tradition of solid doctrine after the mind of St Thomas.

Born in Dublin on March 31st 1897, he entered the Society in 1914, having received his education at Belvedere and Clongowes. He taught as a scholastic at St Ignatius College Sydney from 1923-1926. Having returned to Ireland for Theology, he was ordained to the priesthood at Milltown Park in 31st July 1929. He did his tertianship at St Beuno’s and was professed of four vows in 1934.

Besides lecturing in Philosophy, he wrote many works, three ofn which are well known :
“The Nature of Art” or “The Shield of Pallas”, “Philosophy without Tears” and “The Platonic Heritage in Thomism. He also published an ep[ic poem on the Passion entitled “Christ Unconquered”.

Besides being a man of remarkable literary gifts, he had a keen sense of humour and a ready wit. A man of simple piety, a model of religious life. He was lively and joyous even in his suffering, which ended in his death died on December 5th 1949.

MacMahon, John R, 1893-1989, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/519
  • Person
  • 27 August 1893-22 October 1989

Born: 27 August 1893, Blackrock, County Dublin
Entered: 31 August 1917, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1935, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 22 October 1989, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death

Father Provincial of the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus, 8 September 1941-14 August 1947.

by 1929 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying
by 1932 at St Beuno’s, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Civil Servant before entry

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 16th Year No 4 1941

General :
Fr. John R. MacMahon, Rector of Milltown Park since August. 1938. was appointed Provincial by Very Rev. Fr. General on 8th September. The best wishes and fervent prayers of the Province are tendered to him on his elevation to his new post of responsibility.
The best thanks of the Province follow the outgoing Provincial Fr Kieran, whose fidelity to duty, understanding ways and kindly charity during the many wears in which he guided the destinies of our Province will long be remembered with gratitude and appreciation. A special feature of his humanity was the quite remarkable devotion and charity which he ever showed to our sick.
We wish him many years of fruitful work for God’s glory and much happiness in his new post as Director of the Retreat, House Rathfarnham Castle.
Fr. Patrick Joy was appointed Vice-Superior of the Hong Kong Mission on 29th July.

Irish Province News 21st Year No 4 1946
GENERAL CONGREGATION :
Letters :

Fr. Provincial to Fr. Vice-Provincial, 5, Borgo S. Spirito, Rome, 3-9.46 :
“The journey by air was a wonderful experience, the greatest comfort all the way, hardly anything that could be called ‘bumping’, and a feeling of complete security.
Times were :
Leave Shannon 5.58 am, Arrive Paris 8.45 a.m. Leave Paris 9.56 a.m. Arrive Geneva 11.23 a.m. Leave Geneva 2.25 p.m. Arrive Rome 5.18 p.m.
Met on arrival by Frs. Hannon and Canavan and Mr. Joseph Walsh, who brought his car to convey me to the Curia. Very hot here. Slept well last night under a quilt and a sheet; the blanket would have been too much. Fr. John Fahy here already. He was two days coming from Paris in a very crowded train a very trying journey. Fr. Hoenen arrived just after me - took twenty hours by train from Milan, far from pleasant. I am on the fifth piano, Frs. Hannon and Caravan one on each side of me, just beside the door out on to the roof. Furnishings very complete. Just now (1.25 Irish time) it is raining, a pleasant and cooling change”.

8-9-46 :
“We are still sweltering. The heat is unbroken. I am told that the newspaper gives yesterday's temperature as 40 Centigrade. I am living at the back of the house with an unobstructed view of Saint Peter's (two thirds of the façade and the dome) and the Vatican (upper storeys). The preliminary work of the Congregation is more extensive than I had expected, and so we do not expect to hold the election until this day week”.

Fr. Provincial to Fr. Vice Provincial, Rome, 18-9-46 :
“We went in five buses to Castel Gandolfo yesterday morning, leaving at 8.30 for the audience with the Holy Father at 10.00. My bus was number 4, and it had number 5 as a trailer. The day was hot, the climb stiff, and just as we got to Castel Gandolfo the floor of the bus burst into flames about a foot away from me. The exhaust pipe from the engine was under the passage-way between the seats quite close to the flooring, and got over-heated. I put my foot down on the flames and they went out; but the flooring had a glowing patch, so we shouted : ‘Fire ! Stop!’ They stopped and we got out and walked the rest of the way, about a quarter of a mile.
The Holy Father was most gracious and charming. He received every one of us individually at the Throne and said a few words to each. He said to me in English : ‘I bless your dear ones and your Province’.”

Maguire, Richard, 1906-1993, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/528
  • Person
  • 31 October1906-21 January 1993

Born: 31 October1906, Rutland Street, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1935, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 29 July 1943, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1946, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Died: 21 January 1993, Our Lady's Hospice, Dublin

Part of the Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin community at the time of death.

by 1958 at Holy Name, Manchester (ANG) working

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 82 : September 1995

Obituary

Fr Richard Maguire (1906-1993)

31st Oct. 1906; Born, Rutland Street, Dublin
Educated at St. Agatha's/Christian Bros., North Richmond Street, Dublin.
Employed as Solicitor's Clerk for 13 years.
7th Sept. 1935: Entered the Society at Emo
1937 - 1940: Philosophy at Tullabeg
1940 - 1944: Theology at Milltown Park
29th July 1943: Ordained
1944 - 1945: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1945 - 1952; Mission Staff, living at Emo
1952 - 1957: Mission Staff, living at Rathfarnham
1957 - 1960: Church work, Holy Name, Manchester
1960 - 1965: Mission Staff, living at Belvedere
1965 - 1969: Mission Staff, living at Manresa
1969 - 1973: Minister at Tullabeg
1973 - 1979; Chaplain to Incurables Hospital, Donnybrook, living at Milltown Park
1979 - 1989: Chaplain to Incurables Hospital, Donnybrook, living at Leeson Street.
1989 - 1993: Cherryfield Lodge
21st Jan. 1993: Died at Our Lady's Hospice, Harold's Cross

Richard was born in Dublin, educated by the Christian Brothers and worked as a solicitor's clerk for 13 years before entering the Jesuit Novitiate in 1935 at the age of 29. He was a member of the Legion of Mary before he entered and remained a Legionary at heart all his life.

After a short course of studies he was ordained in 1943, eight years after joining the Novitiate. Following Tertianship, he served on the Mission Staff for twenty-one years, ministered in the Church of the Holy Name, Manchester for three years, was Minister of the House in Tullabeg for four years and in later life spent sixteen years as chaplain to the Royal Hospital in Donnybrook, In his mission and retreat work he put a number of young men in contact with the Society and they became, and still remain, eminent and excellent Jesuits.

Richard was gifted with a beautiful singing voice and in early life received great commendation from Mrs. Boylan who taught singing and led a famous choir. Mrs. Boylan was the mother of Dom Eugene Boylan (Cistercian), and his Carthusian brother in Parkminster,

Richard acknowledged himself that the most suitable work for him was the chaplaincy to the sick, many of whom were incurably ill, in Donnybrook's Royal Hospital, and he was confirmed in his view by Father General in a personal letter on the occasion of his Golden Jubilee as a Jesuit in 1985. In 1989 he retired to Cherryfield Lodge but he battled bravely with declining health, away from his beloved Community in Leeson Street. Early in January 1993 he asked to be admitted to Our Lady's Hospice at Harold's Cross, and died there on January 21st. May he rest in peace.

Edward Keelaghan

Maxwell, Joseph RN, 1899-1971, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1682
  • Person
  • 07 January 1899-19 September 1971

Born: 07 January 1899, Taunton MA, USA
Entered: 07 September 1919, St Stanislaus, Yonkers, NY - Marylandiae Neo-Eboracensis Province (MARNEB)
Ordained: 20 June 1932
Final vows: 03 February 1947
Died: 19 September 1971, Ybbs, Austria, Ybbs, Austria - Novae Angliae Province (NEN)

by 1966 came to Leeson St (HIB) working

McGrath, Fergal P, 1895-1988, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/453
  • Person
  • 18 November 1895-02 January 1988

Born: 18 November 1895, Dublin
Entered: 06 October St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1927, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 02 January 1988, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Studied for a BA in French and German as a Junior

by 1918 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1929 at Valkenburg, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) making Tertianship
by 1945 at Campion Hall, Oxford (ANG) studying
by 1949 Fordham, NY USA (NEB) making Tertianship

Irish Province News 1st Year No 1 1925
We may mention here a school story recently published – “The Last Lap.” Its author is Mr. Fergal McGrath, SJ. The book, which was mostly written while the author was a scholastic in Clongowes, has had an enthusiastic reception. The Reviewer in the " Ecclesiastical Review " writes of it : “It is a splendid boys' story. Probably neither Fr. Finn, or Fr. Spalding nor Fr. Boylan has told any better”.

Irish Province News 1st Year No 3 1926
Mr Fergal McGrath's “Last Lap” has been translated into Spanish. Much difficulty was experienced in finding Spanish equivalent for such phrases as : “getting his eye in”, “the calculating pig”, etc,

Irish Province News 10th Year No 2 1935
Works by Father Fergal McGrath SJ :

  1. “The Last Lap” - Pub. Benziger Bros., N. York and the Talbot
  2. “L'Ultima Tappa” - Italian translation of the above by Father Celestine Testore, S.]., , pub. Marietta, Rome, 1929
  3. “Adventure Island” - Pub. Benziger Bros., N. York and the Talbot Press, Dublin, 1952. School edition pub by Talbot Press, 1954, sanctioned by Board of Education for Higher Standards of Primary Schools.
  4. “Un Drama en Irelande” - French translation of above by M du Bourg. Pub. Editions du Closer, Tours, 1934
  5. “Christ in the World of To-day” - Pub. Gill & Son, 1933 (Lenten Lectures on the Sacred Heart)
  6. “Mother Catherine McAuley” - (Biographical sketch contributed to The Irish Way) Pub. Sheed & Ward, 1932
  7. “The Beefy Saint” - Pub. Irish Catholic Truth Society (a story for boys)
    Pamphlets
  8. “Canon Hannigan’s Martyrdom: - Pub. Irish Messenger Series, (A story of Irish clerical life)
  9. “The Catholic Church in Sweden” - (Edited) English C.T.S
  10. “Stories of the Twelve Promises of the Sacred Heart” - (In collaboration) Irish Messenger Series, “Tenement Angel”.

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 4 1948
Fr. Fergal McGrath sailed from Cobh on 24th September for New York ; he will be lecturing in Fordham University in the coming year.

Irish Province News 63rd Year No 2 1988

Obituary

Fr Fergal McGrath (1895-1913-1988)

Born in Dublin [on 18th November 1895) and educated in Clongowes (1908 12], Fergal McGrath was so dedicated to the Society, which he joined in 1913 on 6th October, after taking First Arts in UCD), that it is impossible to imagine him in any other way of life. He was very proud of his family, particularly of the involvement of his father, Sir Joseph McGrath, in the development of Irish university education, and as he became in his turn the patriarch, his love for the younger generations was evident in the quiet, almost shy, allusions which he made to his nephews and nieces.
Having taken a BA at University College, Dublin [1917], and studied philosophy in both Stonyhurst (1917-'8] and Milltown Park (1920-'2], he taught in Belvedere (1918-'20] and Clongowes [1922-24] before beginning theology at Milltown in 1924. [He was ordained a priest on 31st July 1927.] Fr Fergal's tertianship was made at 's Heerenberg in the Netherlands, which was then a house of the Lower German Jesuit province. He found that tertianship dragged a bit towards the end and he was happy to return to Ireland and to Rathfarnham as Minister of Juniors in 1929. Fr Fergal became Rector of Clongowes in 1933, at a very important phase in the growth of the school, and remained in office until 1941, when he went to Gardiner street as Superior. Four years of study in Oxford, where he took a D. Phil., Occupied his years until 1948 and he spent a further year studying education at Fordham university in New York, Returning to Ireland, Fr Fergal was made Rector of St Ignatius, Galway, where he remained until 1953. Leaving the West, he moved to Leeson street as a writer and spiritual father, until he began his last superiorship as Rector of Rathfarnham in 1961. From 1967 to 1972, he lived at Loyola House. Leeson street was his final Jesuit home. Fr Fergal was Province Archivist from 1975 until 1986, but remained Custodian of the strongroom, dealing with researchers and with many written queries until he went to hospital early in December 1987. He died on 2nd January 1988.
Fergal McGrath was a writer, a Jesuit superior, a good friend to many people all over Ireland, with a vast correspondence and with an interest in everything. He could write scholarly books, short stories, novels of school life and many pamphlets and newspaper articles. He wrote with the same care and precision which he brought to everything he did.
There was no haste, but much prudence. He once said, rather unnecessarily, to somebody who knew him very well '”s you know, I'm a cautious man'” He gave himself heart and soul to any task assigned to him.
Blessed with a very strong constitution and with what seemed to be an inherent ability to avoid stress, Fr Fergal was remarkable in his adherence to a personal daily routine. He had great respect for his fellow Jesuits and found it hard to say anything even remotely harsh about anybody. Most of his experiences as a superior seemed to have been happy, but he never discussed any of the difficulties which must have cropped up in those years, such as the hardships incur red while building at Clongowes and the unease at being a superior in formation during what are known as the 'turbulent' 1960s. In a life which lasted for 92 years, there were obviously disappointments and 'might-have-beens', but Fr Fergal never referred to them. He was quite free from resentment and never wasted time by cultivating hurts. He recognised that the past had not been perfect and, with complete trust in the Lord, got on with the task in hand. This attitude made him a surprisingly free person, because first impressions could be of a man bound by many self-imposed rules.
It was this inner freedom, combined with his respect for others, which drew so many people to him. The person to whom he probably felt closest all his life was a man who died almost fifty-five years before he himself did - Fr John Sullivan. A biography was one sign of his devotion to Fr John's cause; another was his slide-show, of which there were both long and short versions. I remember a conversation in which he made an unconscious slip by referring to “St John Sullivan” and went on talking, unaware of how much he had revealed in that brief anticipation of the Church's judgement. He also did tremendous work for the Cause of Mother Mary Aikenhead.
Despite the long and very slow decline in his energies, Fr Fergal's last years in Leeson street were undoubtedly some of his happiest. As his long daily walk along the Stillorgan road was gradually reduced to a stroll in the back garden, as he became more and more grateful for the lift in the house, he gave the impression of great happiness, because he felt himself among a group of brothers in the Lord, who both cared for him and esteemed him. He lived to become the longest-serving member of the Province.
There were many changes in the Society which Fr Fergal accepted, but which he hardly understood and of which he did not fully approve, but here, once again, his obedience and his deep sense of commitment as a religious took him across hurdles at which he might have fallen. Fr Fergal was intelligent and was a liberal in the Edwardian sense of the word. Patience was one of his strongest suits and stood him in good stead on many an occasion when he might have been driven wild with exasperation, as when unpunctual scholars kept him waiting for hours after they were due to examine documents in the archives.
His radio was a prized and well-used object. Even at 92, Fr Fergal found that a session with his clarinet was a good way to relax and he never felt called to make major adjustments for the television era. His devotions took up an increasingly large part of his day and it was obvious that he was very close to the Lord. In somebody so accomplished, so well known that he received an honorary doctorate from UCD as recently as 1982, there was a profound vein of humility, as I discovered one morning when he amazed me by asking for my advice about some point in the Divine Office.
We worked together in the archives for several years. Having known many of the men whose papers are preserved in the Leeson Street strong-room, he was an invaluable source of advice. No question from me was made to seem silly, no letter from any enquirer was too demanding to merit his full attention.
I treasure casual remarks Fr Fergal made, such as “I don't remember Fr X, but I do recall the old men talking about him” or his stories about mishaps during a juniorate villa at Monkstown, Co Dublin, during the first world war. He spoke little about his own accomplishments, such as his classical learning and his good command of Irish, but he did pass on jocular pieces of advice, such as a piece of consolation he had been given in 1933, when somebody told him that “being a rector isn't too bad - there are even whole days when you'll forget that you're a rector at all”.
A quick glance around his room told the story of Fr Fergal's life better than any biography. His chimneypiece was lined with photographs of his family, of fellow Jesuits and of the present Pope. There was one small bookshelf and, piled beside it, boxes of papers relating to Fr John Sullivan. His wardrobe contained a few, well-worn clothes and his Jesuit gown hung on the back of his door. The attention of any visitor would be drawn to the most prominent object in the room: a desk, laden with letters from all over Ireland and abroad, with books which he was reading as possible material for the refectory and with a Latin Office-book placed close to his armchair.
Fr Fergal's last illness was mercifully brief. His sense of humour showed itself to the end, as he responded to a plea not to die in 1987 and thereby destroy the Province's death-free record for that year. When I last saw him, the day before his death, he was sleeping peace fully, his face serene. A well-lived life was drawing to its earthly close. It was a life in which many people were blessed with his friendship and I am very grateful for having been one of them.
Fergus O'Donoghue, SJ

Fr Fergal McGrath: Incomplete bibliography of his works
Fiction:
“Adventure Island “(Dublin and New York, 1932). “Tenement Angel and Other Stories “(Dublin, 1934). “The Last Lap “(Dublin, 1925; Italian translation “L'ultima Tappa”, Turin "and Rome, 1929; French translation “Au Dernier Tour”, Paris, (no date).
Education:
“The Consecration of Learning”: lectures on Newman's Idea of a university (Dublin and New York, 1962). “Education in Ancient and Mediaeval Ireland” (Dublin, 1979). “Newman's University: Idea and Reality” (Dublin, 1951). “The university question” in “A History of Irish Catholicism”, vol. V, pp. 84-142 (Dublin, 1971).
Christian doctrine: Christ in the world of today (Dublin, 1933). Life in Christ (Dublin, 1957).
Biography: Father John Sullivan, S.J. (Dublin, 1941).
Biographical articles:
“Catherine McAuley” in “The Irish Way”, edited by F.J. Sheed, pp. 244-'62 (London, 1932). “The conversion” in “A Tribute to Newman”, edited by Michael Tierney, pp. 57 83 (Dublin, 1945). “The Background to Newman's Idea of a University” in “The Month”, July-August 1945, vol. 181, no. 946, pp. 247-'58.
Pamphlets:
“Father John Sullivan SJ” (Dublin, 1942). “Newman in Dublin” (Dublin, 1969). “Youth Guidance” (Dublin, 1944). “James A Cullen SJ : A modern Apostle of the Sacred Heart” (Dublin, 1980).

McGrath, Thomas, 1947-2000, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/635
  • Person
  • 01 November 1947-27 October 2000

Born: 01 November 1947, Dungarvan, County Waterford
Entered: 07 September 1966, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 30 August 1980, Dungarvan, County Waterford
Final Vows: 03 February 1991
Died: 27 October 2000, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

by 1976 at Innsbruck, Austria (ASR) studying
by 1981 at Innsbruck, Austria (ASR) studying

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 108 : Special Edition 2001

Obituary

Fr Thomas (Tom) McGrath (1947-2000)

1st Nov 1947: Born in Dungarvan, Co. Waterford
Early education at CBS in Dungarvan
7th Sept. 1966: Entered the Society at Emo
8th Sept. 1968: First Vows at Emo
1968 - 1971: Rathfarnham - studying Arts at UCD
1971 - 1973: Milltown Institute - studying Philosophy
1973 - 1975: CIR - studying Psychology
1975 - 1980: Innsbruck - studying Theology
30th Aug, 1980: Ordained priest
1980 - 1982: Innsbruck - Doctoral studies in Psychology
1982 - 1986: CIR. - Lecturer; Doctoral Studies, Psych.
1984 - Minister, CIR
1986 - 1988: Leinster Road - Lecturer, St. Vincent's Hospital;
1987: Superior
1987 - 1988: Tertianship (2 Summers) at Wisconsin
1988 - 1990: Cherry Orchard - Psychotherapy work;
1990 - 1996: Sullivan House - Rector; Social Delegate;
3rd Feb 1991: Final Vows
1996 - 2000: Leeson Street - Director of St. Declan's
1999: Sabbatical leave
27th Oct. 2000: Died in Dublin

About a year before his death, while Tom was in Germany, he developed severe headaches. He was diagnosed to be suffering from a brain tumour. Returning to Ireland, he was operated on, but the doctors were able only partially to remove the tumour. In August, while in France on holiday, he unexpectedly took ill and was brought back to St. Vincent's, from where he was later transferred to Cherryfield on 2nd September, 2000. While his condition was weak, he enjoyed a reasonable quality of life and was lucid to the end. He died on Friday, Oct. 27, 2000.

Brendan Murray preached at Tom's Funeral Mass...

When Tom McGrath was a young child growing up in the midst of a very loving family in Dungarvan, his early years were often darkened by illness, and brightened again by frequent excursions to the seaside. On one of these excursions Tom picked up a shell from the beach and began to wonder what was inside it. Then he looked out over the water at the horizon and began to wonder what was beyond it.

That childlike sense of wonder remained with Tom throughout his life, first as an inner source of energy, which released in him (what he called) 'a rage for knowledge and then as a driving force that helped him to develop the wide array of his God-given talents. Like Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Tom saw life as an adventure to be lived, as a challenge to be faced, and as a hymn to be sung.

I don't know if he always had a feeling that his time on this earth would be short but he certainly had that feeling during the last year of his life. Even when he was in full health there was always a sense of urgency about him, an impatience to get things done. The world spun on its axis, but never quite fast eriough for Tom. He needed an extra hour in every day, an extra day in every week, and an extra week in every year. And for him there was always an agenda to channel his energies and time: tasks to be done, articles to be read, calls to be made, people to be helped, appointments to be kept, and - most important of all - occasions to be celebrated.

During his last working week in August, when he was already greatly restricted by his illness, he took his first client for analysis at nine o'clock in the morning and his last one at nine o'clock in the evening. Later, he had a drink and a chat with a friend or with one of his family.

That, of course, was no surprise to his community in Leeson St who were familiar with his ways and well used to the sight of him scurrying down the back garden at seven-thirty every morning and hearing the sound of his battered little Starlet roaring off the grid on its way to Saint Declan's School, usually at top speed, and usually modh díreach in a bus lane.

In Cherryfield Lodge Nursing Home, where Tom was so happy and appreciative of the care that he received when recuperating after surgery and again during the final stages of his illness, there is a saying of Fr John Sullivan pinned to the wall in the matron's office which says: “If you can say Deo Gratias to everything, you are a saint”.

In life, Tom never claimed to be a saint and, in death, he would, I suspect, be a most un-cooperative candidate for canonisation - but he certainly was grateful for everything that he received: for the many gifts that he was given and for the many opportunities that came his way, but more especially for the affection and support of his family, for the companionship and loyalty of his friends, and for the camaraderie and understanding of his Jesuit colleagues.

Tom's training as a Jesuit taught him to seek God in all things. His training as a psychoanalyst taught him to search deeply for the relevant data and to respect their truth. These two sources of formation were fused together in Tom's colourful, complex personality and enabled him to accept the reality of facts whilst discerning in them a veiled reality of gifts. For Tom believed passionately that everything that is, is given; and that it comes to us from the hand of a loving God. He believed passionately that God's creative and forgiving love imposes on us a debt of gratitude and that our sense of gratitude is both the source and measure of our generosity. That is why he tried, as best he could, to give freely what he had freely received.

One of the most revealing memories I have of Tom is of a week end in 1989 when a number of us assembled in Tullabeg to reflect together on the signs of the times. At the social gathering, which opened that seminar, I watched Tom patiently listening to one of the brethren who kept asking, “What do you analyst people do?” Eventually, Tom responded, “I listen”. “And what do you listen for?” “I listen for the word”, said Tom.

At the time, I don't think any of us realised the significance of the word in Tom's life. He listened for the word in his professional work, the voice of the real self as opposed to the echoes of intrusive elders, or idealised expectations, or presentations designed to appease harsh authorities. But he also responded to the word of God: the creative word that called him into being at his birth, the sacramental word of baptism that called him into the community of Christ and the family of the Trinity, the mysterious word of his vocation that called him into the Society of Jesus to be with him as a companion and to labour with him as a disciple, the symbolic word of nature that spoke to him powerfully in the sunset and the dawn, and finally the commanding word of God that summoned him in death into the communion of the saints.

Tom was an independent spirit who liked to be in control of his own destiny. Listening came easily to him. Letting go did not, but as his final illness progressed he gradually found the freedom to speak to others about his fears and his loneliness until those twin spectres were eventually disarmed forever. He even found the freedom to speak about his death.

This day last week a close friend came to visit Tom in Cherryfield and left him with a promise that he would see him again on Friday, not knowing that Tom had other plans for that particular Friday, which was the Feast of St Otteran and the anniversary of Tom's mother's death. As soon as his friend had gone out the door Tom turned to his family and remarked drily: “He'll have a job finding me on Friday”.

The night before he died he recited the Hail Mary with his family, emphasising the final petition, “Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death”. Then he shared with them a simple reflection: “We came into this world without fear and we should leave it without fear”. Tom had reflected deeply on the relationship of law and liberty in the epistles of Saint Paul and saw his whole life as a journey from coercion to freedom, or, as he preferred to put it, as a movement from “should” to “want”.

-oOo-

Brendan Staunton writes...

It would be easier to talk to Tom than write about him. Tom was someone you could talk to. He once said in an interview with the Irish Times, not long after he had returned from his psycho analytic training in Austria, Innsbruck and Igor Caruso, that the goal of analysis was to help people “author their lives”. How do I author an obituary for such a complex and lovable person?

A colleague once teased him by asking, “What do you do all day?” “I listen”, Tom replied. “And what do you listen for?” his colleague persisted. “I listen for the word”, said Tom. I think the word that governed Tom's life is to be found somewhere between psychology and religion, spirituality and psychoanalysis. The relationship between them, not to mention the threshold between psychoanalysis and philosophy, was a central concern, a prime preoccupation ever since I first got to know him in 1970.

Two images from his funeral mass on October 30th, 2000, resonate: as a young man, while walking the beach in his native Dungarvan, he looked into a shell and wondered about its hidden depths? Then he raised his head and gazed out to the horizon, and pondered on what might be beyond the horizon? These two images reminded me of Kant's insight about the only two horizons worth studying: the starry heavens above and the moral law within.

Tom took the latter path, which led to his becoming a Jesuit priest, which in turn led to his following Freud, who saw that the inner world of every child was a life being lived, and not just a passive preparation for adulthood. Tom liked the Cat Stevens's line, “from the moment I could talk, I was ordered to listen”, which for him expressed well how misunderstood children could be. He brought this aliveness to his work in St Declan's, a school for troubled kids. This work followed his years of working with Jesuits in formation, and his teaching in the Milltown Institute, NCIR, LSB and the School of Psychotherapy in St Vincent's Hospital, Here his work with the Association for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy in Ireland built on his experience as a founding member of the Irish Forum for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy. Constitutional, ethical and organisational issues interested him from his psychological days in UCD.

While Tom loved his work, his first love was his family and friends, Jesuit and non-Jesuit alike. Many of us miss the convivial conversations in pubs and elsewhere. I know he is missed by Eithne, Frank, Helen, Jim, Mary, Niall, Patrick, and many more, especially his Sunday evenings with his sister, Assumpta, his brother-in-law, and family. He was a good friend, in smooth and rough times; he could acknowledge mistakes with friends, but this ability for friendship never left him right up to his untimely death.

As well as the world of childhood and the world of organisations, Tom was also alive to the gap between faith and culture that is a feature of the way we live now in Ireland. Tom lived that tension, trying to do justice to both, without the refuge of a facile harmony or a nostalgic solution.

His fighting spirit shone in his final year. It was a testing, trying and tense time, as his many visitors would testify. And the many people who visited him were a testimony to the affection and love he inspired. Family, friends and faith shone in the passionate uncertainty of Tom's treatment. We couldn't see the depths of the shell, nor beyond the horizon of death and dying. It was difficult to accept that he was dying.

Thinking of Tom at Conferences, (from Rome to Rio de Janeiro), on Committees (IFPP; APPI), his concern with psychoanalysis in all its shades was a constant thread. He pulled and pushed that thread through traditional theology, and I will always remember a passionate outburst during a meeting where Tom's openness to the feminist horizon urged a re-reading of the early history of Christianity, and how that story needs to be told from a different perspective. That men made all the rules alone angered him. He once told me, “Creation is for revelation, and revelation for freedom, a freedom that worked for a more just ordering of society”.

His never-to-be-completed doctorate would have contributed to the debate on the relationship between psychology and religion, spirituality and psychoanalysis. He saw not only the differences but also their common ground. Socrates, Freud and Jesus were three in one for Tom.

“The sense of humanity has not yet left me”. These words, spoken by Kant to his doctor, nine days before he died, could be applied to Tom, yet he often questioned the ethics of self fulfilment, and had no time for the viewpoint that the only point to life was the point you gave it. While appreciating the uniqueness of subjectivity he knew this meant transcendence and therefore a dimension of gift, and word. And yet Tom believed passionately in the truth of experience being the most important norm for human knowing. His ample library bore witness to his thirst for knowledge.

For Tom, Christianity was not against culture. History for him was the medium through which the Divine is realised. The bible was dependent on neighbouring cultures and wisdom traditions, and he, therefore, could never see eye to eye with people in Religious Life who saw Freud as “a pagan”. Augustine appreciated Aristotle! Aquinas loved Plato!

A true reflection on Tom's life would require other people's thoughts, too. Tom was a simple, complex and untidy character. No obituary can do him justice in a way. As Tom battled to accept his brain tumour, his serious spirit became more intense, and paradoxically calmer. There is no denying how difficult his last year and a bit was, for him and for all who cared for him. He underwent a sort of sea change. What moon pulled the tide of his thinking and feeling, sexuality and spirituality, silences and speeches is a mystery. How would Tom like us to remember him? Maybe with some unanswered questions. Like why did he die on his feast day? Or why so young? Why did he not take more care of himself?

“Readiness is all”, he might reply, and raise a glass to us with a twinkle in his eye, cigarette in hand, a sanguine rub of his beard, or an acerbic judgement on someone in authority. Tom was amazing, really, in that he could be a stirrer and a calm presence, but always curious to know what was in that shell by the sea side. And even when he saw a grain of truth, he never imposed it in a doctrinaire kind of way. He lived our zeitgeist with zest. I feel blessed to have known him, and sad he is no longer with us, and miss his sagacity, secretiveness and spirituality. But as Lacan reminds us, separation can mean se parare.

McKenna, Lambert, 1870-1956, Jesuit priest, Irish language scholar and Catholic social thinker

  • IE IJA J/30
  • Person
  • 16 July 1870-26 December 1956

Born: 16 July 1870, Clontarf, Dublin City
Entered: 13 September 1886, Dromore, County Down
Ordained: 30 July 1905
Final Vows: 2 February 1910, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 26 December 1956, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson St, Dublin community at the time of death

Editor of An Timire, 1912-19.

by 1897 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1898 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1909 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
McKenna, Lambert (Mac Cionnaith, Láimhbheartach)
by Vincent Morley

McKenna, Lambert (Mac Cionnaith, Láimhbheartach) (1870–1956), Irish-language scholar and catholic social thinker, was born 16 July 1870 in Clontarf, Co. Dublin, son of Andrew McKenna, accountant, and Mary McKenna (née Lambert). Having attended Belvedere College, Dublin, he entered the Society of Jesus in 1886 and studied at the order's novitiates in Dromore, Co. Down, and Tullabeg, King's Co. (Offaly), before graduating with a BA in Irish and classics from the Royal University (1893) and taking an MA (1895). After further study in scholastic philosophy and theology he was ordained in 1905 and subsequently taught at Belvedere College, Dublin, and Mungret College, Limerick.

Lambert McKenna's English–Irish phrase dictionary was published in 1911, but it was the classical bardic language rather than the modern vernacular that principally engaged his attention, and from 1916 onwards he published numerous editions of bardic poems in Studies and the Irish Monthly – a journal that he edited in 1922–31. McKenna's edition of Iomarbhágh na bhfileadh (the ‘bardic contention’) was published in 1918, and his editions of the poetry of Aonghas Fionn Ó Dálaigh (qv), Donnchadh Mór Ó Dálaigh (qv), and Philip Bocht Ó hUiginn (qv) followed in 1919, 1922, and 1931 respectively. He spent four years compiling the state-sponsored Foclóir Béarla agus Gaedhilge (1935), but the dictionary's scope was largely confined to the colloquial language of the Gaeltacht and it failed to provide Irish equivalents of many modern terms and concepts. His Dioghluim dána (1938) and Aithdhioghluim dána (1939–40) were substantial anthologies of bardic poems by various authors.

McKenna was an advocate of the social principles of Pope Leo XIII's encyclical Rerum novarum. Lenten lectures that he delivered in Limerick in 1913 were published by the Irish Messenger in its ‘social action’ series of pamphlets under such titles as The church and labour and The church and working men. In The social teachings of James Connolly (1920), McKenna argued (p. 7) that James Connolly's (qv) voice was ‘ever the voice of Tone or Fintan Lalor, though his words are often the words of Marx’. During the 1920s he wrote in the pages of Studies about such recent events as the Russian revolution, the short-lived communist revolutions in Hungary and Bavaria, and the Mexican revolution. In 1925–6 he chaired a national conference on the use of Irish in the schools, convened by the Department of Education, and its recommendations on the increased use of the language as a medium of instruction were accepted by the minister, John Marcus O'Sullivan (qv).

McKenna retained his intellectual vigour at an advanced age, and three works that he edited were published by the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies when he was in his 70s: Bardic syntactical tracts (1944) and two bardic duanairí (poem-books) – The book of Magauran (1947) and The book of O'Hara (1951). He was awarded the degree of D.Litt.Celt. honoris causa in 1947. McKenna spent the latter part of his life in the Jesuits' house of studies at Lower Leeson St., Dublin, and died in Dublin on 26 December 1956.

Ir. Independent, 25–7 Dec. 1956; Hayes, Sources: periodicals, iii, 499–500; Austen Morgan, James Connolly: a political biography (1988), 59; Beathaisnéis, ii (1990), 50–51

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 1st Year No 1 1925

Fr. Lambert McKenna is Chairman of a committee appointed by the Ministry of Education for the purpose of reporting on the National Programme of Primary Education. During the meetings of the Committee, very valuable evidence was given by Father T. Corcoran

Irish Province News 2nd Year No 2 1927

Towards the close of last year the School Inspection Committee sent, with the approval of the Free State Government, Fr Lambert McKenna on a visit to Great Britain and the Continent for the purpose of getting First-hand information on the working of various systems of Primary School Inspection. He spent two months at this task, Visiting England, Scotland, France, Belgium, Holland and Germany.

Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934

Leeson St :
Monday, November 20th, was a red-letter day in the history of Leeson street, for it witnessed the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the House's foundation. In November, 1833. the Community came into being at 86 St Stephen's Green, where it remained until 1909, when the building was handed over to the newly constituted National University. The Community, however, survived intact and migrated to a nearby house in Lesson Street, where it renewed its youth in intimate relationship with the Dublin College of the University.
Its history falls this into two almost equal periods, different, indeed, in many ways, yet essentially one, since the energies of the Community during each period have been devoted to the same purpose, the furtherance of Catholic University Education in Ireland.
A precious link between the two eras is Father Tom Finlay, who was a member of the Community in 1883, and ever since has maintained his connection with it. His presence on Monday evening, restored to his old health after a severe illness was a source of particular pleasure to the whole gathering. It was also gratifying to see among the visitors Father Henry Browne, who had crossed from England at much personal inconvenience to take part in the celebration. Not only was Father Browne a valued member of the Community for over thirty years, but he acquired additional merit by putting on record, in collaboration with Father McKenna, in that bulky volume with the modest title " A Page of Irish History," the work achieved by the House during the first heroic age of its existence. It was a pleasure, too, to see hale and well among those present Father Joseph Darlington, guide, philosopher and friend to so many students during the two periods. Father George O'Neill, who for many years was a distinguished member of the Community, could not, alas. be expected to make the long journey from his newer field of fruitful labor in Werribee, Australia.
Father Superior, in an exceptionally happy speech, described the part played by the Community, especially in its earlier days of struggle, in the intellectual life of the country. The venerable Fathers who toiled so unselfishly in the old house in St. Stephens Green had exalted the prestige of the Society throughout Ireland. Father Finlay, in reply, recalled the names of the giants of those early days, Father Delany, Father Gerald Hopkins, Mr. Curtis and others. Father Darlington stressed the abiding influence of Newman, felt not merely in the schools of art and science, but in the famous Cecilia Street Medial School. Father Henry Browne spoke movingly of the faith, courage and vision displayed by the leaders of the Province in 1883, when they took on their shoulders such a heavy burden. It was a far cry from that day in 1883, when the Province had next to no resources, to our own day, when some sixty of our juniors are to be found, as a matter of course preparing for degrees in a National University. The progress of the Province during these fifty years excited feelings of
admiration and of profound gratitude , and much of that progress was perhaps due to the decision, valiantly taken in 1883 1883, which had raised the work of the Province to a higher plane.

Irish Province News 32nd Year No 2 1957

Obituary :

Fr Lambert McKenna (1870-1956)

Fr. Lambert McKenna died in St. Vincent's Nursing Home on 26th December, 1956, after a prolonged illness. He was born in Dublin on 16th July, 1870, and was educated at Belvedere College, of which to the end he was a very loyal son. In 1886 he entered the Novitiate, then at Dromore, Co. Down, and having taken his first vows, he studied for the Royal University at Tullabeg, Milltown Park and 86 St. Stephen's Green. He took his B.A. in classics and Irish in 1893. He taught for one year at Clongowes and having studied for another year at Milltown Park he took his M.A. in 1895. He taught the Juniors at Tullabeg for one year and went to Philosophy, first at Jersey and for the third year at Louvain. He taught for two years at Mungret before beginning his Theology at Milltown Park, where he was ordained in 1905. From 1906 we find him for three years at Belvedere, first as Doc., then as Adj. Praef. stud, and finally as Praef, stud. In 1909 he went to Tronchiennes for Tertianship. From 1910 he taught for three years at Mungret and for one year at the Crescent, In 1914 he was stationed at 35 Lower Leeson St. as Director of the Leo Guild. He was Praef, stud, and Dir. Leo Guild at Rathfarnham from 1915-1918, being in addition during the last year Editor of the Irish Monthly. In 1919 and 1920 he taught at Belvedere, being Praef. stud. in the latter year. He was Adj, Ed, Studies at Leeson St. for two years. From 1923 to 1934 he was back at Rathfarnham teaching the Juniors, being Praef. stud. for two years and Ed. Irish Monthly for several years. In 1935 he was assigned to Leeson St., where he was to remain until his death.
Fr. McKenna was, even as a student, strongly influenced by the work of Douglas Hyde and Eoin MacNeill in the newly founded Gaelic League, He combined an exact knowledge of Irish idiom and poetical diction with an eagerness to see as many Irish texts as possible published and annotated with critical notes. He made his name in 1911 by publishing a short, but excellent, “English-Irish Phrase Book”, which he had compiled himself from the works of the best contemporary writers of living Irish speech. In the same year, as editor of Timthire Chroidhe Naomhtha Íosa, he began to print a series of unpublished Irish bardic poems, which were later continued in the Irish Monthly and in Studies. His edition of the “Contention of the Bards” - a work which had been begun by his friend Tomás Ó Nulláin, but had been left incomplete - appeared in 1918; the poems of Aongus Ó Dálaigh in 1919; the poems of Philip Bocht Ó h-Uigion in 1931; Dioghluim Dána in 1938; Aithdioghluim Dána in 1939-40; poems from the Book of Magauran and Bardic Syntactical Tracts in 1944; poems from the Book of O'Hara in 1947. He was awarded the degree of M.Litt.Celt. in 1914, he was elected Member of the Royal Irish Academy in 1932 and he was given the degree of D.Litt.Celt. (honoris causa) in 1947.
Fr. McKenna took an active part in organising the Irish College at Ballingeary in its early years, and he was in close touch with Pearse when he was headmaster of Sgoil Éanna. The success of his phrase book, which passed through several editions, caused the Irish Government to appoint him as editor of a more ambitious Foclóir Béarla agus Gaedhilge, which was published in 1935. But this volume has less of Fr. McKenna's personal sense of idiom, and less also of his early enthusiasm for the spoken Irish language.
Apart from his life-long devotion to Irish studies, Fr. McKenna took a keen interest in what was - before 1914 in Ireland - the new study of Catholic social principles. He was Spiritual Director of the Leo Guild during the first World War and during the post-war years. He thus came into personal contact with many young Irish Catholic laymen, who shared his interests and who looked to him for guidance. About this time he published several pamphlets, of which his “Social Principles of James Connolly” was the most notable. In the early years of the Irish Free State he was appointed chairman of a commission, which in 1925 made a report on the first (1922) national programme of primary education and laid the foundations of the present scheme.
In 1924, he published “The Life and Work of Fr. James Cullen, S.J.” He strove to make the Irish Monthly, during his years as Editor, an organ of Irish Catholic social and educational thought. He was also active as adviser to more than one Dublin charity. Those who knew him well in his last years can testify that to the end of a long life he maintained an active interest in a surprisingly wide range of Catholic activities, and especially in every form of the lay apostolate. He was for many years keenly interested in the Legion of Mary, and Mr. Frank Duff was one of the group which stood around his grave at Glasnevin.
Those who lived in community with Fr, McKenna at any time, and very specially in his last years, will remember him as a priest who was also an admirable community man. He had a wonderful memory for anecdotes of Irish Jesuit life, many of them stretching back to days that lie now in a very distant past for most of us; and his gifts as raconteur and mimic made his conversation a constant pleasure for all who were present. He suffered much throughout life from his health, and his infirmities were a great trial to him in his last years, But he bore them all with a wry sense of humour, which won sympathy from all his brethren. Few members of the Province have done as much for practical social work in Ireland as well as for the promotion of Irish studies. Suaimhneas síorrai dé anam.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Lambert McKenna 1870-1956
Fr Lamber McKenna was a great Irish scholar. His Irish Phrase Dictionary and the Larger English-Irish Dictionary are monuments to his name.. He also edited numerous Irish texts for the Irish Texts Society, In his early years he took an active part in the Irish College at Ballingeary, and he was in close touch with Padraic Pearse as Headmaster at St Enda’s.

His other great interest was Social Studies. At a time such interests were not so popular as they are nowadays. He was Spiritual Director of the Leo Guild for years. His pamphlets on Social Questions were well appreciated in his day, and continued so, especially his “Social Principles of James Connolly”. He also published the Life of Fr James Cullen, the Founder of the Pioneers.

As a community man he was invaluable, and Leeson Street community, where he spent his last years, is still rich with his anecdotes of Irish Jesuit Life.

He retained to the end an amazing influence with a wide range of Catholic activities, especially those of the lay apostolate.

He died on December 26th 1956, a first class scholar, a thorough Jesuit, and an inveterate enemy of anything that was false or pretentious.

Meade, Matthew, 1912-1992, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/529
  • Person
  • 19 February 1912-26 August 1992

Born: 19 February 1912, Ballymaclode Castle, County Waterford
Entered: 29 September 1930, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1944, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1947, Coláiste Iognáid, Galway
Died: 26 August 1992, Beaumont Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Manresa, Dollymount, Dublin community at the time of death

Early Education at Waterpark College, Warerford

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 82 : September 1995

Obituary

Fr Matthew (Mattie) Meade (1912-1992)

19th Feb. 1912: Born, Ballymaclode Castle, Co. Waterford
Educated: Waterpark College, Waterford
29th Sept.1930; Entered the Society at Emo Park
1932 - 1935: Arts at UCD. Lived at Rathfarnham
1935 - 1938: Philosophy at Tullabeg
1938 - 1941: Teaching (H.Dip.in 1940) in Galway
1941 - 1945: Theology at Milltown
31st July 1944: Ordained
1945 - 1946: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1946 - 1948: Teaching in Galway
1948 - 1951: Assistant Director Sod. B.V.M.; Director of Missions and Retreats: Emo
1951 - 1953: Assistant Director Sod. B.V.M.: Director of Missions and Retreats: Rathfarnham
1953 - 1957: Church work at Gardiner Street
1957 - 1963: Superior at Gardiner Street
1963 - 1968: Director of Missions and Retreats, Oecon. Irish Messenger at 35 Lower Leeson Street
1968 - 1974: Director of Retreat House/ Director of Missions and Retreats at Rathfarnham
1974 - 1982: Superior of Rathfarnham
1982 - 1992: Manresa, Oeconimus
26th Aug. 1992: Died at Beaumont Hospital

His birth place, Waterford City, had a strong Jesuit history and tradition as the members of the Irish Province discovered when we travelled for the celebrations on June 16th 1991 connected with St. Patrick's Church still in use as the out church in the Cathedral Parish, It was in St. Patrick's that the Irish Jesuits worked from 1691 practically to the suppression of the Society, many of them of outstanding ability and revered and respected by the priests of the Diocese. Mattie was very proud of their unique influence and tradition. Louis McRedmond's history of Irish Jesuits makes fascinating reading for all Waterford men with names and details so vivid and accurate.

Mattie's early years in the Society were the routine ones at that period, starting with Emo in September 1930 at the age of eighteen, followed by Arts at UCD, Tullabeg, two years experience in teaching at Galway, and then theology at Milltown Park, Ordained on 31st July, 1944, he was then a young man with a lovely balanced sense of humour, a most popular community man. This gift he kept thankfully through his life and already one could detect the signs of a true seanchaí, one who had a shrewd mind with plenty of common sense.

His first apostolic work was two years back teaching in Galway which he loved and often spoke warmly of the community and especially Fr. Bart Coughlan's quaint words of wisdom. Then suddenly he found himself as Director of Missions and Retreats for twenty years, living in Emo, Leeson Street and Rathfarnham Castle. This was a job that suited him admirably as he was naturally methodical, placid and gradually developed a great relationship with the secular clergy.

The next ten years stationed in Gardiner Street, six as Superior, were to his liking: he showed fine qualities, offering sound advice, using his wrist when necessary and not afraid to deal strongly with serious problems, though not a man to seek confrontation. It was the time when the Provincial and his curia still lived at St. Francis Xavier's.

The years at Rathfarnham Castle 1968-82, eight as Superior, he remarked were the fourteen happiest years in the Society. This in a way was strange as the “young men” had vanished and Rathfarnham Castle seemed to outsiders at least a rather lonely house. He developed and guided the promoters attached to the Retreat House Association who did trojan apostolic work with an appreciative backing from Mattie. They were men whom he admired, respected and with whom he built up a magnificent bond. I remember his Golden Jubilee celebrations when he invited the priests of the parish, the De La Salle Brothers, the Loreto Abbey Sisters and others. But his chief guests at that dinner were Pat Boland, his maintenance man, who, with his wife, occupied the place of honour. Very typical of Mattie. It was a gesture that one would not forget too easily.

The last ten years of his life were spent at Manresa Retreat House where he filled with a delicate touch the job of Oeconimus. It was a pleasant task for him because by nature he was tidy, entered items every day, and was always up to date in his books. He grew in wisdom and grace at this stage and the Community could sit back and listen with a chuckle to his own, less than pious verses about the “Nun of Loftus Hall”, “The Thimbleful of Vinum in a Cup”, and many other gems reminding us of days long past. They were recited from memory without the slightest change of even a comma. When a certain new man joined the Community he was ruefully heard to remark that he now enjoyed precious little air space! Then for the last two years the health became a problem. He suffered patiently but luckily he had some good periods. His last week at Beaumont Hospital was blessed for him as he really liked all the men in his ward. He was happy and thoroughly enjoyed every day of that week. He could ask for no more. He had good company and a good audience. Then he suffered a stroke and lasted two days, dying quietly and without fuss

Some people go through life in the Society and sometimes Jesuits tend to forget them and may not even mention them that often. But Mattie was not easy to forget because he was a rare and loveable character, but above all because he was the ideal Community man who did so much for the Irish Province. Fr. Paddy Greene paid a nice tribute to him in Irish at his Requiem Mass in St. Francis Xavier's - a fitting farewell .

Kieran Hanley

Moloney, Michael, 1913-1984, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/252
  • Person
  • 25 March 1913-05 June 1984

Born: 25 March 1913, Abbeyfeale, County Limerick
Entered: 07 September 1931, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1945, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1949, Belvedere College SJ, Dublin
Died: 05 June 1984, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin - Zambiae Province (ZAM)

Part of the St Ignatius, Lusaka, Zambia community at the time of death.

Transcribed HIB to ZAM : 03 December 1969

by 1965 at Loyola Watsonia, Australia (ASL) working

◆ Companions in Mission 1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Michael Moloney on coming to Zambia wrote a short 250 word account of his life, at the end of which he put: “He arrived in Zambia in May 1967 and was attached to Mukasa Secondary School at Choma. He spent x years there. He died at xx in 19xx...May he rest in peace”. PLEASE PUBLISH NO MORE THAN IS IN THIS ACCOUNT Signed: Michael Moloney S.J. 14 April 1967.

He had had four heart attacks before this date and this might have prompted him to write his own obituary! So brief! So succinct! That was Michael! Yet he lived another seventeen years, in Zambia, fully occupied.

Michael was born on 25 March 1913 in Abbeyfeale on the border of Co. Limerick and Co Kerry. His secondary education was taken in St Michael's College, Listowel, and at the Jesuit College of Mungret. He entered the Society in Emo in 1931, pursued the normal Society studies with regency at Clongowes Wood College. He was ordained in July of 1945 at Milltown Park, Dublin and after tertianship went to Belvedere College to teach for four years. He moved to Leeson Street as minister and editor of the IRISH MONTHLY which ceased publication in 1953. From 1953 to 1959, he was attached to the College of Industrial Relations (CIR) as director of the Cana Conference which organised pre-marriage courses. These were a liberating experience for many couples whom were deeply in love and full of hope and good intentions. The spirit prevailing during courses were happy - even hilarious at times, deeply spiritual in the best sense, full of the wisest insights he could muster from wide reading and from his sympathetic and naturally optimistic temperament.

In 1959 he went to Loyola University, Chicago, USA, where he gained a degree in social and industrial relations and returned to CIR. He began to have heart attacks during these years (1961-64). For four years he went to Australia as a director of a retreat house near Melbourne.

He arrived in Zambia in 1967 to teach in Mukasa Minor Seminary for a year before being moved to St Ignatius in Lusaka. He became director in the Zambia Institute of Management and spent eleven years at Evelyn Hone College of Further Education, becoming Head of the Department of Business Studies. He retired in 1981. He was kept busy at St lgnatius helping with pastoral work, preaching, marriage counselling, writing leaflets and pamphlets on Christian values in the modern world. He was very conscientious in his work and totally dedicated to whatever work he was asked to do. He highly valued his religious life as a Jesuit and was very loyal to the Church. He loved a challenge and was always ready to take up his pen to defend the Church. He started the Kalemba Leaflets to bring out the deeper aspects of our common faith.

He was a good companion and, as well as enjoying his own talk, he could listen to others. He had certain conventions to which he held tenaciously, but he was not hidebound nor narrow. On the contrary, he loved freedom and the liberty to express every truth and facet of life as it was, or as he saw it. He was essentially logical and exact and could be impatient when undue consideration was being given to illogical and incalculable elements in human behaviour. He rejected all nonsense.

On and off during his seventeen years in Lusaka, some health symptoms occurred that slowed him up and endangered his life.

He returned to Ireland threatened with gangrene on the toe. The time he spent before and after the amputation was no more satisfactory than could be expected. There were times when he wanted to die. His lifelong sense of friendship with Christ seemed to become more vivid in that last year or so. He worked over many thoughts for the defense of the faith and these he hoped to continue publishing in Zambia in the Kalemba Leaflets. That was not to be. He was sensitively cared for in Cherryfield Lodge, the Jesuit Nursing Home in Dublin where, in the end, his death came unexpectedly on 5 June 1984.

Note from John Coyne Entry
Fr Michael Moloney writes:
‘Fr Coyne took a very keen interest in what Jesuits had done in Zambia since the coming of Frs Moreau and Torrend for whom he had a deep admiration. Admiration for people who did "great things for Christ" was a permanent attitude of his. His standard for a Jesuit was that he should be "a saint, a scholar and a gentleman" and he clearly tried to exemplify that in his own life. He was a kindly man yet at the same time a puzzle to many. Many wondered what "the real John Coyne was like" because externally he seemed to be set in a conventional spiritual mould and to be rather formal in much of his behaviour, so much so that one cannot escape the conclusion that he was a man with a conflict between his personality traits and what he considered Jesuit spirituality demanded of him. In Zambia he was faithful to his afternoon stroll during which he would meet people and through which he made some friends whose hospitality he was pleased to accept".

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Michael Moloney came to Australia as director of the retreat house at Loyola College, Watsonia, and worked with Conn Finn, 1964-66.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 59th Year No 4 1984

Obituary

Fr Michael Moloney (1913-1931-1984) (Zambia)

1931-33 Emo, noviciate. 1933-36 Rathfarnham, juniorate. 1936-29. Tullabeg, philosophy. 1939-42 Clongowes, 1942-46 Milltown, theology. 1946-47 Rathfarnham, tertianship.
1947-51 Belvedere, teaching. 1951-55 Leeson St., Minister, Ed, Irish monthly. 1955-59 Catholic Workers College, dir. Cana Conference. 1959-60 Loyola University, Chicago, stud sociology and industrial relations. 1960-63 Catholic Workers' College, lect and psychology. 1963-67 Loyola College, Watsonia, Victoria, Australia, dir. retreat-house.
From 1967 on: in Zambia. 1968-83 St Ignatius Residence, Lusaka, Zambia, dir Zambia Institute of Management (till 1970. then:) lect. Evelyn Hone College of Further Education/Applied Arts and Commerce. 1984 convalescing in Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin, after hospital treatment. Died there on 5th June 1984.

To write about someone I knew as well as Michael is surprisingly difficult, I have little interest in cataloguing the events of his life, and no inclination, or right, to reveal the inner person I came to know so well. What then can be said? As a young man in the Society (1931-47) he was very well liked; comfortable and relaxed in a rather tense era; lively and zestful for life; stalwart in his convictions and strong in their expression. He worked hard, and was always good at mastering a subject accurately and expressing it clearly.
After the years of 'formation we never lived in the same community again. Our relationship was full of absences, crowned by the final departure so well described by Jean Guitton: “From the angle of the living and of those who have not yet made the great journey, the absence of the dead is more than a sorrow. It is so incomprehensible, so ironical, to see them no more, not to be able to communicate with someone who was a substantial part of one's life, and who seems to have gone away one evening in a fit of madness leaving no address....
In the close community of the early years he would be remembered for his pleasant singing of ballads like “Ivan Skivinski Skivar” or “The garden where the praties grow” on days of celebration; and indeed how he would become voluble and expansive after one glass of the unnamed wine we used to get on rustication days! He was good company; and, as well as enjoying his own talk, he could listen. He had conventions which he held to tenaciously, but he was not hidebound or narrow: on the contrary he loved freedom and the liberty to express every truth and facet of life as it was, or as he saw it. His competence on formal occasions combined well with an unfettered and untrammelled spirit at other times.
He had an orderly mind, symbolised by his very clear and firm handwriting and the way he typed his letters, with seldom a misprint and never a faded or blurred ribbon. He was essentially logical and exact, and could be impatient of undue consideration being given to the illogical and incalculable elements in human behaviour. He threw out nonsense, We often disagreed as to what constituted nonsense.
Nevertheless, during one of the most fertile periods of his life he was dealing with what might be thought of as the most illogical and irrational area of human life - sexuality. Here his sound judgement rescued him from the then conventional attitude of clerics to marriage as essentially a legal contract with rights and duties. He knew instinctively that this was an inadequate and he could not accept the sexual apparatus as some kind of mechanical device, kept in a bedside locker, to be used or not according to a complicated set of philosophical and legalistic nostrums, devised largely by the inexperienced. Hence his pre-marriage courses in the CIR were a liberating experience for many pairs in love, and full of hope and good intentions. The courses, I understand, were happy, even hilarious at times; deeply spiritual in the best sense; full of the wisest insights he could muster from wide reading and from a sympathetic and naturally optimistic temperament.
I cannot speak with any assurance of the other long period he spent in adult education, in the Evelyn Hone Institute in Lusaka, He went through some difficult times with courage and faith, and kept working hard even when he felt some degree of disapproval and a sense of being undervalued. On the whole, though, my impression was that he got satisfaction from and gave satisfaction in his work there.
He did not take too kindly to the onset of old age or the intimations of mortality: he was in fact rather disbelieving of its drastic effects. Those who die young have this advantage over us, I now realise, that they come to fulfilment when still fastened to their “own best being and its loveliness of youth” (Hopkins: The golden echo), and do not have to reverse of anticlimax and slow decay to get there.
About twenty years before he died he had some trouble with heart and circulation. Then he went to Australia, where he was very active in retreat-giving, and made at least one rich and lasting friendship. Off and on during the sixteen years he spent in Zambia some symptoms occurred that slowed him up and endangered his life. When he came on holiday to Ireland he took things physical quietly, On villa in Achill he showed no tendency to climb the lovely mountains, but would kindly drive me to the foot and would stay below until I returned many hours later, on one occasion to find that he had had a very serious fall from the pier at Dugort. On the last villa we spent together at Banna Strand, Co Kerry, we took little exercise, he much less than I. He was contented to mooch about the dunes when it was fine, and look long meditatively over the Atlantic to the and setting sun.
When he came back some months ago threatened with gangrene in the toe, he was a very changed man. The time he spent before and after the amputation was no more satisfactory than could be expected. There were times when he wanted to die. His lifelong sense of friendship with Christ seemed to become very vivid in this last year or so. He worked over many thoughts for the defence of the faith: these he hoped to continue publishing in Zambia, as the Kalemba Leaflets. He was sensitively cared for in Cherryfield Lodge, where in the end his death came unexpectedly. I viewed his remains in Kirwan's funeral parlour. They did not look like remains, but like him: determined, and ready to spring into animated conversation at the right stimulus. I came by chance into possession of a record of Verdi's Requiem a few days after his burial, and will I hope always enjoy thoughts of him as I listen to its gentle and its thunderous passages. May he enjoy eternal life. the years
Michael J. Sweetman

Moore, John J, 1927-2018, Jesuit priest and botanist

  • IE IJA J/822
  • Person
  • 22 April 1927-20 September 2018

Born 22 April 1927, Ballyglass, Kilmovee, County Mayo
Entered 07 September 1945, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1958, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1963, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died 20 September 2018, Coptic Hospital, Lusaka, Zambia - Zambia-Malawi Province (ZAM)

Part of the Novitiate, Xavier House, Lusaka, Zambia at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ZAM : 16 May 1990

by 1960 at Münster, Germany (GER I) making Tertianship
by 1985 at Lusaka, Zambia (ZAM) teaching

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/fr-brownes-polymath-partner/

Fr Browne’s Polymath partner
While John Moore was home on leave from Zambia, he talked to Pat Coyle, Director of Communications, about his links with Fr Frank Browne, and about much else in his most unusual life. He was Professor of Botany in UCD during the 70’s. He also became a student and friend of the renowned Jesuit photographer, Fr Frank Browne. John took early retirement from his UCD chair, but the last thing he did was retire. Instead he became a Jesuit missionary and went to Africa, working in Zambia and Malawi. As in previous years, John returned to Ireland this summer to visit his family and Jesuit friends. Whilst here he watched the RTE TV documentary on Fr Browne (see story in this issue) and recalled his own special relationship with the Jesuit who was not only a famous photographer but also a heroic chaplain to Irish volunteers in World War I.
After the documentary was aired, John talked to Pat Coyle of Jesuit Communications about his life and his friendship with Fr Frank. You can listen here to the interview in which he recalls his days in UCD as Professor of Botany and shares with her a letter he’d just received from a student who’d discovered a yellow poppy on a beach in Mayo. The poppy was thought to have been lost to these shores, not having been seen for thirty years – but it’s back! He also speaks about the subsequent rewards and challenges of becoming a missionary in his late 50’s; as well as lecturing in various institutions, he mastered the complexities of the computer age and put those skills to good use. At 87 John is still full of vitality and as the IJN photo shows, he looks like a man in his sixties. There’s a reason for that too; he spoke about what keeps him young in body and soul. He returns to Africa in September, bitten by the missionary bug and refreshed by his holiday home, ready as ever to serve the Lord with a willing heart.

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/death-of-a-botanist/

Death of a botanist
The funeral Mass of Fr John J. Moore SJ took place on Monday 24 September in Kasisi Parish, Lusaka. Fr Moore, who was 91 years old, died on 20 September. Charles Searson SJ was the principal celebrant and homilist at the vigil Mass. Speaking to a packed Church he recounted the key moments of his life and the remarkable contribution he made to the Jesuits and to wider society. (Read his homily notes here).
Fr John was a native of Mayo, born in Kilmovee on 22 April 1927, and his family moved to Dublin when he was ten. He was a student at Belvedere College SJ. He joined the Jesuits in 1945, was ordained a priest in 1958, and took his final vows in 1963.
For more than twenty years Fr John was Professor of Botany in UCD. He was an elected member of the Royal Irish Academy, and an Irish government appointee to the Wildlife Advisory Council. He was awarded the Europapreis für Landespflege prize in 1982 in recognition of his work on Irish vegetation and nature conservation. As Fr Charlie noted, “Right through his academic career in Dublin John showed himself to be an outstanding academic and professor.”
In the 70’s Fr John was rector of the Monkstown community in Dublin and in 1980 he was appointed superior of the Espinal community in Gardiner St, in inner city Dublin. He also was a member of the Teams of Our Lady, a Catholic organisation which supported couples in their married life.
In 1983 Fr John took the surprising step of early retirement in order to join the Jesuit mission in Zambia. Fr Charles also noted that when he first turned up for work in the University of Zambia he showed considerable patience as he had a lengthy wait for an official appointment. But he put his computer skills (honed in 1960’s Dublin) to good use. According to Fr Charles, “there was great demand for his assistance from Ph.D students at the university, who were trying to assemble the fruits of their research.”
Fr John settled well in Zambia but he did return to Ireland from time to time. During a visit in 2016 he gave a lengthy an insightful interview to the Irish Jesuit Mission office which you can read in full here.
He also spoke to Pat Coyle, Director of Irish Jesuit Communications in 2014. In the course of that interview (listen above), Fr John talked about his early Jesuit days as a student and friend of the renowned Jesuit photographer Fr Frank Browne SJ.
Recalling his days as Professor of Botany in University College Dublin he shared a letter he had just received that summer. It was from one of his former students and he had discovered a yellow poppy on a beach in Mayo. The yellow poppy was thought to have been lost to Irish shores, not having been seen for thirty years, but it was back.
Fr John also spoke about the rewards and challenges of becoming a missionary in his late 50’s, and his work as a lecturer in various institutions in Zambia, first teaching biology and later theology.
He was 87 at the time of the interview but was still full of vitality. As the IJN photo shows he looked like a man in his sixties and there was a reason for that which became clear when he talked about what kept him young in body and soul.
The interview took place in August and Fr John returned to Zambia in September bitten by the missionary bug, and refreshed by his holiday back home. He gave four more years of fruitful service before his peaceful death last Thursday. The readings at his vigil Mass, were from Isaiah 6;1-8 ‘Whom shall I send? Who shall be our messenger?’ And Matthew 6:25-33: ‘ Look at the birds in the sky. They do not sow or reap or gather into barns. Yet your heavenly Father feeds them.’ They were a fitting tribute to his life of service to others, and care for the earth.

◆ Irish Jesuit Missions : https://www.jesuitmissions.ie/news/211-john-moore-sj-mission-in-zambia

What does it mean for me to be a missionary in Zambia today?
John Moore, SJ
I came to Zambia as a missionary when I was 56, after a very fulfilling time working in the Botany Department at UCD. My “spare-time” activities during that time involved me with married couples, giving retreats and spiritual direction as well as helping in Parishes at the weekends.
When I left Ireland some of my colleagues at the University as well as the more senior students were very surprised at my decision to move to Zambia and some told me bluntly that it was a wrong decision. I was not convinced by their arguments. It seemed to me that I had done sufficient for Ireland during my 23 years at UCD. Besides, after I had spent a few days the previous year as external examiner at the Biology Dept. of the University of Zambia (UNZA), I became very aware of the needs of Zambia, especially in University education.
Since I am now 85 years old, I could hardly be called an active missionary, but I am still convinced that I am in the right place. During my 29 years “on the missions” I have seen a huge change in the Church and among the Jesuits in Zambia. When I came here all the active Jesuits were white – now almost all the Jesuits running the various Jesuit works are native Zambians or Malawians. This gives me enormous satisfaction. Is this not why we came out here? To help in the development of an indigenous church.
So, without falling into the temptation of sitting back in my old-man’s rocking chair in a self-satisfied way, I must admit that I do feel a sense of having cooperated with the Lord in doing my little bit to bring about this change.
2nd April 2012

https://www.jesuitmissions.ie/news/508-irish-men-behind-the-missions-fr-john-moore-sj

IRISH MEN BEHIND THE MISSIONS: FR JOHN MOORE SJ

The Irish Jesuit Missions continues its series of interviews with Fr John Moore SJ. From ecologist to theologian, Fr John Moore SJ takes us though his life’s story in Ireland and Zambia.
When John Moore entered the Society of Jesus’ noviciate straight from secondary school, it was customary at the time. Like the other young Jesuits who came straight from secondary school, he was assigned to study for a degree in UCD. He did first Arts but switched over to Science the following year. In his final year one of the research projects he undertook was a follow up survey of vegetation in the Dublin Mountains, which had been researched 50 years previously by the famous naturalist, Lloyd Praeger, the results being published in 1905. He was required to re-survey the parts closer to Dublin and write up the results.
After getting his B.Sc. degree he was sent to study philosophy in the Irish midlands. A few days before he left Dublin, the Fr. Provincial (who had been his Master of Novices and knew all about his scientific interests) suggested that he might look around and start work in an informal way on his Ph.D. during his spare time. He was fascinated by the vast areas of Bogland which stretched in all directions and discovered that a local bog had two very rare plants growing on it: one a rare rush never seen in Ireland before, the other one found in only one other place in Ireland. So he decided to work eventually on a Ph.D. thesis on the ‘Bogs of Ireland’.
During the holiday periods he decided to finish the re-survey of the mountain area south of Dublin, covering the whole area of Praeger’s original survey. He wrote up the results during his spare time while studying Theology at Milltown Park. He finished the job before leaving for ‘Tertianship’, the final year of Jesuit formation which focusses on deepening one’s spiritual life. He was sent to Germany for this stage of his formation, so he left the manuscript with the Professor of Botany to see it through the printing process.

Dublin Mountains’ conversations in Germany
While in Germany his paper on the “Resurvey of the Vegetation south of Dublin” appeared in print and his Professor in Dublin sent him a few reprints. These he distributed to some of the ecologists living on the European Mainland. To his surprise, a reply came back immediately from the famed German ecologist, Reinhold Tüxen. He, along with the famous French ecologist Braun-Blanquet, had been invited to Ireland after Europe began to recover from the effects of World War II. They published their results (in German) in 1952 and John had critiqued some of their work in his paper. Tüxen was extremely pleased. He wrote “Although we published our Irish material 10 years previously, nobody seems even to have read it, let alone critiqued it! “Can you visit me before you return?” Tüxen asked. And so began a long and valued relationship of scientific interests with Reinhold Tüxen.
Before John’s ordination, his Provincial casually mentioned to John that UCD (University College Dublin) had requested to have him on its staff after he had finished his Jesuit studies. “I said ‘Yes’ - is that OK for you John?” All he could say was “You are the boss! If you want me to take up the offer, that is OK by me.”
So John taught for 23 years at UCD, Botany Dept., being eventually appointed Professor and Head of Department.

In the 1970’s the Irish Government was sending quite a lot of official aid to Zambia University, financing lecturers from the Irish Universities to give courses at the University of Zambia. Fr Michael J. Kelly, SJ, a good friend of John since the novitiate, was at this time Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University in Lusaka and was much involved in arranging this government aid; he petitioned the Irish Government to finance John to come as External Examiner of the Biology Department. John accepted the offer and was very struck by the difficulties of running a third world University according to First World standards. When his work in the University was finished John stayed on for some time in order to visit the Irish Jesuit Missioners and help in their work.

A ‘road to Damascus’ moment
John returned to UCD in time to organise things for the new academic year. It was while making his annual retreat in the Jesuit retreat-house, Manresa in Dublin that it happened.
John had been 23 years in the Botany Department of UCD. He was unexpectedly overcome with a very strong feeling that he should relocate to Zambia! Having prayed over the matter, he sent a letter to the Provincial requesting to be sent to the Zambian mission. He was quite late going onto the missions at 56 years of age.
The answer he wanted arrived with one condition – that he remain working within third-level education. Fr Michael Kelly SJ (https://www.jesuitmissions.ie/news/494-a-museum-piece-or-a-hero) set about arranging a position for him at the University of Zambia and John prepared for this new phase in his life. Then with only two days to go before departure, a telegram arrived from Michael: “SOMETHING GONE WRONG WITH JOB. STOP. COME ANYWAY. STOP.”
“What should I do Fr Provincial?”. The Provincial’s consultants had all been very clear in their requirement that John remain at third level teaching. He consulted Bishop Corboy of Monze, Zambia, who was in Dublin at that time for medical treatment. “You can trust Michael Kelly’s good judgement” he advised. And, with that assurance, John set out for Zambia and a new chapter in the book of his life.

Once a professor, always a professor
The search was then on in earnest for a job in Lusaka, but it had to be in third level education. He found out that when he applied for an advertised position in Agricultural Ecology, he didn’t even get an acknowledgement of his applications. Undaunted, he took the bold step of offering himself and his expertise to the Biology Department in Lusaka University. Not as a professor, not as a salaried staff member—but just as a n ordinary demonstrator! During the following year, he was back in the lecture halls and laboratories, giving tutorials and running practical classes.
At that time, a new lecturer had been employed and she was assigned to run a rather difficult course on Ecology, Statistics and Evolution to the final year students. She became ill. So John and two others stepped up to the mark, put a course together and got the students through their exams.
His opportunistic efforts paid off and he was offered a three year professorship contract, ‘once a professor, always a professor’. The contract was duly renewed after three years.

Former biologist turned theologian
At this time, In Malawi, there were big problems at the Diocesan Major Seminary situated at Zomba in southern Malawi. A decision from Rome requested that three Jesuits be sent in from Zambia—a Rector, a spiritual father and a Dean of Studies.
The Provincial Fr Jim McGloin had two well prepared men for the first two jobs, but he had no one who would be able to take on the job of Dean of Studies. He wrote to the Provincials of all the Jesuit provinces who might have a suitable man qualified to teach theology in English, even for a year or two. At that time John was living with the Provincial and each day when John enquired of him how the search was progressing, the reply was negative. John understood the awkward position the Provincial was in, given that the request had come from Rome. But he had a solution.
His contract was up for renewal but a thought persisted. Should he retire from Biology and teach theology, work towards taking up the Dean of Studies position? He shared his thoughts: Jim was delighted! “Do you really mean that?”.“I do!” said John and so it was settled. The two others were already in Zomba and soon he was welcomed as the third man.
A few weeks remained before the next semester and John had to work very hard to prepare to teach Theology of the Sacraments to students. During the following years he also taught Scripture, both Old and New Testaments.
The Jesuit Provincial had signed two 5-year contracts with the Malawian Bishops but then the Jesuit teachers were gradually withdrawn. After two more years, John too was moved on, received by the international education authorities. Back at Ireland’s UCD, 70 was the limit for even the best preserved lecturer to function.

The influence of others
Fr Tommy Byrne SJ was his Master of Novices for two years and then was made Provincial during which time he always took an interest in John and the development of his scientific interests.
Fr Pedro Arrupe SJ and his account of the atom bomb blast at Hiroshima is the passage John likes to recommend to young men wanting to know about the Jesuits. Fr Arrupe had been a medical student before entering the Jesuits and was the master of novices in the novitiate situated on a hill outside Hiroshima far enough from the centre of the city to avoid any deaths from the blast. Since this was the first atomic blast to be exploded over a civilian target, the medical authorities had no idea of what the best treatment was for severe radiation burns. Fr Arrupe set up a clinic in the novitiate to treat the survivors suffering from severe radiation burns but he had no idea on how to treat them. He had just received a consignment of borax for his infirmary. He discovered that it was quite effective in alleviating the effects of bad radiation burns.
Man’s inhumanity to man framed Fr Arrupe’s whole character and was noted by all who met him. When, several years later, Fr Arrupe viewed the film “Hiroshima, mon amour” where the nuclear blast was replicated—a terrible flash, then awful destruction—the memory came back to haunt him and he resolved never to view it again.
The present pope is also a much admired figure. John was inspired when he read about the change that Pope Francis had experienced when he lived in very poor areas of Brazil. Upon his return he was made Bishop of Bueno Aires.

The day the unexpected occurred
Born in Kilmovee, County Mayo in Ireland, John is the eldest of two sons and two daughters. At 10 years of age the family moved to Dublin for his father’s work. He had been separated from them during his primary school years since his mother wasn’t very keen on the local school; so she had sent her son to be educated at the national school where her father was Principal. There the teaching standard was high and in fact, John Mc Grath, his grandfather, was the first Irish National School teacher to receive a University Degree from the Royal University in Dublin.
John’s secondary school years were spent vey happily at Belvedere College in Dublin and was his first encounter with the Jesuits, although John didn’t experience any inclination at the time towards becoming a member of the Society of Jesus. There was a connection in the wider family: Fr Jack Kelly SJ was a first cousin.
Then the unexpected occurred when, on John’s first enclosed retreat in 6th year, Fr Eugene Ward SJ gave the retreat to the young men during their last year of college. Fr Ward had returned from the Chinese missions to study theology and be ordained priest, but he had been blocked by World War II from returning as a young priest.
One evening during the retreat, he was reminiscing about his experiences in China and mentioned the enormous opportunities there since the Chinese people were very receptive to the teachings of the Catholic Church.
Suddenly, like a flash, John was convinced that the Lord wanted him to be a Jesuit! Next day, determined to rid himself of what he felt to be a silly teenage crush on the Jesuits, he took a long walk in the rain – to no avail. He asked Fr. Ward, the retreat director, what he should do about it. “Ah interesting.” was the only reply he got, and that was all! But John could not shake the thought off. He decided to attended Mass every morning with the intention that the Lord would help him to shake off the idea. It did not work!
Next step was to run this persistent notion past the Prefect of Studies who advised John to speak with the Provincial about it. So far he had kept the idea to himself knowing that once it was shared, it would spread, which it did eventually. He confided his decision to his uncle, Fr Jack Kelly’s father, who scolded him for not informing his parents first. But John’s parents weren’t surprised at his decision to enter the Society of Jesus and were very supportive.

A lifetime’s decision finally made
It was decided—John went to Emo to begin his studies! And so the decision to become a Jesuit was partly influenced by Belvedere College, partly perhaps by his cousin Jack Kelly SJ and certainly by Fr Ward’s quiet evening musings over his experience as a missionary in China.
Ironically, at the beginning of John’s second year at Belvedere, the prefect of studies decided he should be a member of a small class studying classical Greek while the rest of the class were studying Science. His parents requested that he take Science, given his inclination towards the subject, but the Prefect was adamant. It was only a few months before the Leaving Cert Exam that the Prefect allowed him the option of writing the Science exam.; John decided to finish the Greek course. The result was that Science as a subject was not taken by him at secondary school and yet he ended up as a scientist plus theologian! The knowledge of classical Greek became very useful later on in study of Sacred Scripture—to this day, John always reads the New Testament in Greek.
Retirement in Zambia
John is now living a very busy retirement in Zambia in the novitiate for English-speaking young African men wishing to join the Jesuits. He teaches an introduction to the New Testament to novices—a challenge at times, as some hold fundamentalist ideas and expect every word in the New Testament to be ‘gospel truth’ even when taken outside of its context. John divides his time between community work, managing a large library and the Jesuit archives for Zambia.
The Irish Jesuit Missions is grateful to Fr Moore for the time and care given to his interview in July 2016 and for this ensuing article.
Author: Irish Jesuit Missions Communications, 24th November 2016

Moran, James, 1932-2016, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/816
  • Person
  • 17 August 1932-18 November 2016

Born: 17 August 1932, Ballina, County Mayo
Entered: 07 September 1951, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1964, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1967, Belvedere College SJ, Dublin
Died: 18 November 2016, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death.

by 1966 at Salamanca, Spain (LEG) making Tertianship
by 1978 at Wilmette IL, USA (CHG) studying
by 1984 at Palo Alto CA, USA (CAL) studying
by 1985 at Barrington IL, USA (CHG) studying
by 1987 at Menlo Park CA, USA (CAL) working
by 1992 at Chicago IL, USA (CHG) working

Early Education at NS Ballina, Co Mayo; Mungret College SJ

1954-1955 Rathfarnham - Studying at UCD
1955-1958 Tullabeg - Studying Philosophy
1958-1961 Crescent - Regency : Teacher
1961-1965 Milltown Park - Studying Theology
1965-1966 Salamanca, Spain - Tertianship at Collegio de San Estanislao
1966-1968 Belvedere - Teacher; Assistant Gamesmaster; Spiritual Father (3rd & 4th Years); “Newsboys Club”
1968-1969 Clongowes - Teacher; Lower Line Prefect; Studying CWC Cert in Education
1969-1974 Belvedere - Teacher; Assistant Gamesmaster; Spiritual Father; Career Guidance (5th & 6th Years)
1974-1976 Leeson St - Principal at University Hall, Hatch St, Dublin
1976-1977 University Hall - Community Minister
1977-1983 Chicago, IL, USA - Studies at Loyola University; St Joseph’s Parish, Wilmette, IL, USA
1982 Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Glenview, IL, USA
1983-1984 Palo Alto, CA, USA - Doctoral Studies at Palo Alto University; St Thomas Aquinas Church
1984-1986 Chicago, IL, USA - Studies at Loyola University; Parish work; Counsellor at St Anne’s Rectory, Barrington
1986-1991 Palo Alto, CA, USA - Post Graduate Training at Palo Alto University; St Raymond Catholic Church; Menlo Park
1988 Research in Family Therapy MRI at Palo Alto University
1987 Our Lady of the Rosary Rectory, Palo Alto
1991-1994 Chicago, IL, USA - Visiting Professor in Psychology at Loyola University; St William’s Church
1992 St Philip the Apostle Rectory, Northfield
1994-2016 Leeson St - Sabbatical (94-95); Lecturer in Education at Trinity College Dublin; Family Apostolate; Writer
1998 Vice-Superior
2002 Principal University Hall, Hatch St, Dublin
2003 Family Therapist
2015 Prays for the Church and the Society at Cherryfield Lodge

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/a-man-for-others/

A man for others
friends, and fellow Jesuits bade him a final farewell at his funeral Mass in Milltown Chapel on Monday 21 November.
Jim had a wide circle of friends associated with the various ventures he undertook as a Jesuit. They were active on Facebook when news of his death broke. Despite some bad health and a twice broken leg, Jim was quite an athlete. He had a passion for rugby, which he taught with gusto to many students down the years in various Jesuit schools. Ivan Morris, one of his former pupils, posted a photo of the rugby team Jim coached, a long time ago. He wrote: “55 years ago these old geezers were quite a decent rugby team! Sadly, our trainer Fr. Jim Moran passed away yesterday. We all owe him a lot. He instilled in us the ability to focus on our goals, gave us just about the right amount of confidence and enough back bone to last a lifetime.”
Similar sentiments have been echoed by many since his death. Preaching at his funeral Mass, his life-long friend Fr John Looby SJ recalled two stories that summed up Jim’s determination and desire to win, even though he would have roundly protested that ‘it wasn’t about the winning’. One concerned the handball games they used to play as novices. John said that although he himself was the better handball player, Jim worked out a strategy and a war of attrition that always resulted in Jim being the victor.
He recalled another occasion when Jim went off to Chicago to study and offered his rugby training services to a Jesuit school there, telling them of his winning accomplishments back in Ireland. His offer however was politely declined and he was told the school was already proficient at winning rugby games. So Jim took himself off to a neighbouring Jewish school where the same offer was gratefully accepted. Some time later his rugby team took on the Jesuit school that had spurned him and won.
Jim had a number of careers in his lifetime – teacher, coach, psychologist, family therapist, and finally lecturer in Trinity College Dublin. Wherever he went he made friends. “He never forgot his friends and I was to learn that his friends never forgot him,” said John, noting that this was especially true of his Jesuit brothers. John learnt in later years that Jim’s father had died before Jim was born, and his stepfather was instrumental in cultivating the talent he had for making lasting friendships. “Providentially his stepfather was a strong influence, setting an example that Jim copied for the remainder of his life. He was given great freedom and he confidently went out to meet new people and allow them into his life.”
The Gospel read at the Mass was that of the Good Samaritan, a fitting one for Jim who was, according to John and indeed all those who knew him well, “a man for others”. He was always quick to offer any help he could to those who crossed his path. Be it the mother in difficulty with her teenage son or the former student who needed some good advice. The music at the funeral was the work of the well known composer and musician Willie Hughes who played and sang in gratitude for the influence Jim had been on his life.
When he returned to Dublin from America in the ’90s, Jim was part of the Leeson St community. They had a large garden at the back-end of the large Georgian house, and Jim spent years lovingly and patiently transforming it. He planted trees and stunning rose bushes, and made arbours and boundaries out of bushes and flowers. It was a labour of love that to this day gives endless pleasure to those who visit the community house in the centre of Dublin.
John concluded by noting that Jim was a person who never saw events in life as mere chance but rather as due to “the providence of a loving God whom he loved and trusted in all his life”.
He served Him well. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

Mordaunt, Edward, 1865-1957, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/255
  • Person
  • 30 May 1865-13 February 1957

Born: 30 May 1865, Gorey, County Wexford
Entered: 27 April 1885, Loyola House, Dromore, County Down
Final Vows: 02 February 1897, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner St, Dublin
Died: 13 February 1957, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 32nd Year No 2 1957

Obituary :

Br Edward Mordaunt (1865-1957)

At Tullabeg, early in the morning of 13th February, 1957, Br. Edward Mordaunt died peacefully in his sleep. He was 91 years of age and had been a Jesuit for more than 71 years. At his death he was the oldest member of the Province and the last survivor of those who had made their noviceship in Dromore, Co. Down.
Br. Mordaunt was born at Gorey, Co, Wexford, on 30th May, 1865. Educated by the Christian Brothers in that town, he came to Dublin at the age of seventeen and was apprenticed to a firm of tailors. There he became an expert tailor and cutter, a skill which he used to good purpose during his long life subsequently in the Society. At nineteen, feeling the call to religious life, he returned to the parish where he had lived as a boy (the one parish in Co. Wexford belonging to Dublin diocese), to Consult his parish priest. He was advised to enter the Society of Jesus and this he did on 27th April, 1885. One of his reminiscences of these Dromore days was seeing Fr. Gerard Manley Hopkins, a visitor from University College, Dublin, standing long and pensively in a field, watching the ploughman turning up the furrows. (Cf. “Sheer plod makes plough down sillion shine.") After the noviceship was transferred to Tullabeg, Br. Mordaunt came there as tailor (1888). In this craft he was quite outstanding. His Jesuit gowns were famous in the Province for the excellence of their cut and trim, and this high standard he taught to his pupil, John Ryan, who for over half a century was tailor at Tullabeg. Later Br. Mordaunt was tailor at Milltown Park for a period of twelve years (1890-1902). It is interesting to note, in the annual Catalogues for those years, how the list of Br. Mordaunt's duties and responsibilities lengthens as his manifold talents gradually come to light. Thus in 1892 he is : Sartor, Cust, vest,, Ad dom., but in 1901 he is, in addition, Aedituus, Emptor, Excitator. During this period, as subsequently in Tullabeg (1902-1911), he proved himself an excellent caterer and was frequently invited to other houses to organise festive occasions. Thus for several years, he was in charge of arrangements for the annual Union Dinner in Clongowes. He himself liked to recall how on the occasion of Fr. James Murphy's funeral at Tullabeg in 1908, he catered for a hundred distinguished visitors.
The competence which Br. Mordaunt displayed in domestic administration decided his superiors to apply him exclusively to that task. In 1911 he took up residence in Wilton House, off Leeson Park, where a hostel for university students had been established, following the foundation of the National University. This hostel was the forerunner of University Hall, Hatch Street, which was completed in 1913, and whither Br. Mordaunt transferred in that year. For thirty-three years he rendered distinguished service in University Hall as universal provider and manager of the domestic staff. He was a strict disciplinarian and secured obedience and efficiency from the servants in his charge. Some of his religious brethren might consider his managerial methods some what stern and autocratic, but somehow the youths over whom he ruled not only respected but were devoted to him. They discerned, beneath a rugged exterior, Br. Mordaunt's fundamental justice and benevolence. The students in the Hall also respected him, though they were not above playing an occasional practical joke upon him. In his shopping expeditions all over the city; Br. Mordaunt was a figure well-known to generations of tradesmen and shop assistants, who, one and all, bad a wholesome respect for his shrewdness and determination to get precisely the commodity he was seeking. During all those years he lived the life of an edifying religious, regular and attentive to his spiritual duties, despite his manifold distractions, and insisting on attention to their religious duties from the servants in his charge. God blessed him with health and vigour all his life. He was fond of walking and, when work was not pressing, he would ask his superior for a shilling and go for a long solitary march to the Dublin hills. A regular feature of his annual holiday in the Jesuit College, Galway, was his trip to the Aran Islands, as honoured guest of Captain Senan Meskil of the good ship Dún Angus.
In 1946, being now an octogenarian, Br. Mordaunt relinquished his tasks in University Hall but continued to work for two years more in 35 Lower Leeson Street. Then, at his own earnest request, in 1948 he was sent to Tullabeg that he might end his long and serviceable life in quiet and prayer. Until his memory began to fail a year or two before the end, he was an active and affable member of the Tullabeg community, always ready to enter with zest into the friendly banter of recreation and brimful of anecdotes from his long and varied career in the Irish Province. When his memory and later his bodily strength began to decline, he was cared for by the other Brothers with a charity and devotion which were truly admirable.
Father Rector said Br. Mordaunt's Requiem Mass in the People's Church, Tullabeg, on 15th February, with Right Rev. Monsignor McCormack, P.P., V.G., Clara, presiding. Also present were Father Provincial, the Rectors of Emo and of Lower Leeson Street and Father Minister of Clongowes. The Tullabeg choir sang the Absolution and “Benedictus”, and Br. Mordaunt was laid to rest in the college cemetery.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Brother Edward Mordaunt SJ 1865-1957
Br Edward Mordaunt laboured for 33 years as universal provider and manager at University Hall Dublin. He had a special gift in that respect, though he was by trade a first-class tailor. He was often called upon by other institutions to manage their big celebrations, University College, for example. On the occasion of Fr James Murphy’;s funeral in Tullabeg, he catered for over a hundred distinguished guests.

But this excellence in the gifts of Marta did not exclude the gifts of Mary. He had the hands of Martha and the heart of Mary. A deep religious spirit underlay his efficiency, so that when his usefulness was at an end in 1948, when he was already 82, he requested to be sent to Tullabeg and to end his days in prayer and quiet. There on February 13th 1957 he passed peacefully to his reward at the age of 91, with the record of having been 71 years a Jesuit.

Muller, Herman J, 1909-2007, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1788
  • Person
  • 07 April 1909-19 April 2007

Born: 07 April 1909, Cleveland OH, USA
Entered: 07 August 1928, Milford OH, USA - Chicagensis Province (CHG)
Ordained: 18 June 1941
Final vows: 15 August 1945
Died: 19 April 2007, Clarkston GA, USA - Chicago-Detroit Province (CHG)

by 1969 Came to Leeson St (HIB) lecturing at NUI
by 1972 Part of the at Loyola (HIB) community though living Extra Dom

Murphy, John E, 1914-1986, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/265
  • Person
  • 06 February 1914-23 September 1986

Born: 06 February 1914, Donabate, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1932, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1945, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1948, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 23 September 1986, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

Brother of Dermot - RIP 1979

◆ Companions in Mission 1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Note from Dermot Murphy Entry
His brother John, also a Jesuit, was with him when he died. When John arrived, Dermot was in a coma. John wrote, ‘He (Dermot) did not give any sign of recognition but I had the uncanny feeling that he knew I was there’.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 61st Year No 4 1986

Obituary

Fr John Murphy (1914-1932-1986)

4th February 1914: born. Schooled at Belvedere. 7th September 1932: entered SJ. 1932-34 Emo, noviciate. 1934-37 Rathfarnham, juniorate. 1937-40 Tullabeg, philosophy. 1940-42 Clongowes, regency. 1942-46 Milltown, theology (31st July 1945: ordained a priest). 1946-47 Rathfarnham, tertianship.
1947-50 Clongowes, teaching. 1950-54 Gonzaga, minister, teaching,
1954-58 Gardiner Street, pastoral work. 1958-69 Loyola: 1958-60 mission and retreat staff; 1960-69 promoter, Apostleship of Prayer; 1962-73 promoter, Eucharistic Crusade; 1966-69 Superior. 1969-83 Gardiner Street: 1969-74 Superior; 1970-81 director, SFX social service centre; 1982-86 executive member, Catholic Social Service Conference.
1983-86 Leeson Street chaplain to St Anne's cancer hospital. 23rd September 1986: died.

In attempting to describe Fr John Murphy's life, it's hard to know where exactly to start or what precisely to stress. For one reason he had so many genuine interests, and for another, the Lord blessed him with so many fine gifts. A younger brother of his, Dermot († 1979), also became a Jesuit priest, and worked in Ireland and Zambia before ill-health and doctor's orders forced him to live in a different setting. Their only sister became a Dominican nun and worked in Africa. In later life, when John became chaplain to the Dominican sisters in Eccles street (near Gardiner Street), this family link made his job a labour of love.
John was a Jesuit for 54 years of his life, and before he became one, as a schoolboy in Belvedere was in contact with the Society. We were impressed by his outstanding qualities as a good priest and a marvellous “community man”. As he met all sorts of people, one assumes that many were attracted by his sense of humour and admired his sound judgement and his unique planning ability. His mind seemed permanently working at full stretch, always one if not two steps ahead of every one else's.
John spent nine years teaching at Clongowes and Gonzaga, and an excellent teacher he was. For many more years, as Irish national director of the Apostleship of Prayer's Eucharistic Crusade, he had a wide-ranging influence on young people. All this was grist to his mill, adding to a store of knowledge and experience to be used later.
Perhaps his most fruitful years were the eighteen which he spent at St Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street, where his various interests were aired and often put into execution. John was indeed a "man for others'. The parish social service centre, a few yards from St Francis Xavier's, was his brain-child, and it brought him into close contact with the Irish Sisters of Charity.
As the years passed, his horizons widened. The Catholic Social Service Conference, with its city-wide organisation, brought him into friendly association with Bishop Kavanagh, and later with Bishop Desmond Williams. For both bishops he had an immense regard, and was glad of support and very proud of their friendship.
Not many people knew of John's great interest in St Vincent's Centre for industrial training, run by the Daughters of Charity. He spent many hours planning and praying for the success of this venture. (More about it in IPN, Oct. 1983, p. 377.) The House-a-marriage (HAM) project, which aims at providing flats for newly-weds, took up much of John's time. He greatly admired that band of businessmen who gave so generously of their time, energy, expertise, advice and enthusiasm in an apostolate so appealing to any christian-minded Dubliner. (More about HAM in his Maker. IPN, Oct. '84, p. 103.)
In 1983 John arranged that he should be chaplain to St Anne's hospital, Northbrook Road, off Leeson park: an institution run by the Daughters of Charity for patients with cancer or skin disorders. He was greatly impressed by the hospital staff and interested in his work as chaplain, which gave him an opportunity of meeting terminally-ill patients. By a strange coincidence he had somehow been attracted for some years to this type of work. Man proposes but God disposes. John gradually learned the truth that his own days were numbered. He acquired the gift of speaking to patients with delicate sympathy and at the same time with strong conviction and sincerity. It's not surprising that he became a founder-member of the Bethany Support Group - an organisation one of whose aims is to help the terminally ill. (More about this in IPN, Apr. '86, p. 250)
In the Gospel, Christ blessed Martha and Mary, so that they became great friends of his. John was blessed with marvellous friends, especially one family who nursed him with loving care both in Galway and in Dublin till shortly before his death: may the good Lord reward them for their kindness.
John loved his fortnight's holiday each summer. Of late years he stayed in their west Cork house, where he relaxed and talked to his heart's content about the things that mattered. One fine sunny day last July, while sailing in Bantry bay off Whiddy island, gazing at sea and mountains, with a smile on his face he said quietly to the present author, “This is like heaven”. He felt drawn nearer to the God he loved and served so well.
There is an old Persian proverb which says that life is summed up in four that words: Men live, men die. Fr John Murphy lived life to the full with enthusiasm, zest and idealism, and - more importantly - was prepared with courage, trust and contentment to meet his Maker.

Murray, Brendan, 1934-2002, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/476
  • Person
  • 28 October 1934-14 March 2002

Born: 28 October 1934, Dublin
Entered: 06 September 1952, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1966, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1971, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 14 March 2002, Mater Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin community at the time of death

by 1986 at Regis Toronto, Canada (CAN S) on sabbatical

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 112 : Special Edition 2002

Obituary

Fr Brendan Murray (1934-2002)

28th Oct. 1934: Born in Dublin
Early education at St. Joseph's, Terenure and CBS, Synge Street.
6th Sept. 1952: Entered the Society at Emo
7th Sept. 1954: First Vows at Emo
1954 - 1957: Rathfarnham - Studied Arts at UCD
1957 - 1960: Tullabeg- Studied Philosophy
1960 - 1962: Mungret College - Regency
1962 - 1963: Clongowes - Regency; Clongowes Cert. in Education
1963 - 1967: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
28th July, 1966: Ordained at Milltown Park
1967 - 1968 Tertianship at Rathfamham
1968 - 1974: University Hall - Principal, Bursar
15" Aug. 1971: Final Vows at Clongowes
1974 - 1978 John Austin House - Chaplain, D.I.T. Kevin St; Bursar
1978 - 1985: Campion House - Chaplain, D.I.T. Kevin Street; Bursar, Co-ordinator, Communications
1985: Vice-Superior.
1985 - 1986: Toronto - Sabbatical year
1986 - 1991: Tullabeg - Superior; Minister; Pastoral Delegate
1991 - 1993: Gardiner Street - Vice-Superior, Minister; Pastoral Delegate
1993 - 1997: Superior; Editor, Messenger; National Secretary Apostleship of Prayer; Pastoral Delegate
1997 - 2002: Leeson Street - Superior; Editor, Messenger; National Secretary of Apostleship of Prayer 14th Mar.
2002: Died at Mater Hospital, Dublin.

Brendan was taken ill at the end of February, 2002. In St. Vincent's Hospital it was diagnosed that he had had a heart attack. He suffered a second heart attack in the hospital. His condition worsened a week later. He was taken to Mater Hospital, where they performed a double by-pass operation. The doctors gave his chances of recovery as 50/50. He was kept on a life support system, but did not respond. From the early hours of March 14th his condition deteriorated rapidly, and he died peacefully in the morning of the same day, surrounded by members of his family.

Michael Drennan writes....
One could wonder what Brendan might have done, had he not joined the Jesuits. With his keen intelligence, great sense of humour and his ability to mimic, many avenues could have opened up for him. He might have outdone Gay Byrne, who also did the Leaving in 1952 at Synge Street CBS. Brendan could have attained fame in many fields, but his desire was not for earthly treasure. God's fidelity and commitment met a faithful response in a life that was a nice blend of the serious and the light-hearted. Brendan had a gentle hold on life. Yet, in his life he achieved much, left us a lot to cherish and be grateful for, as he had a depth and wisdom that was too good to be forgotten.

We gathered for his funeral on the Feast of St. Joseph, who is described as a “man of honour”. The same words might be used of Brendan. There was a deep sadness evident as we bade him farewell; he was taken so quickly that we had little opportunity to say goodbye.

The Gospel of the Emmaus journey seemed relevant as a way of giving a brief summary of Brendan's life. It is a good story. Brendan was a man of story having a great abundance of them; and he could tell them well. He had the capacity to embellish and make them richer, even giving the more elaborate version back to the person who had shared it with him, originally - unknowingly? In talks and retreats, he used stories to illustrate aspects of God's story from Scripture; many appeared in his well-written editorials in the Sacred Heart Messenger. A good story can have many levels of meaning.

It is a story of good companionship, which shortens a journey and leaves lasting memories. Brendan was a good companion to many people, especially, to his own family, whose loss was great; he kept in contact with them, wherever they were, sharing their joys and sorrows. In community he could brighten up a dull day with his witty interventions. He was a companion to many people whose lives he touched in ministry, whether that was in Kevin Street DIT, or to people who came to see him, or in talks or retreats he gave, or to those he worked with. Through the Sacred Heart Messenger, he reached many who felt they knew him through his writing.

He was a good companion because he had depth as well as humour. Discussions on theology, scripture, religious life, or art, engaged him. He loved fun, also, though some of his pranks did not work out as envisaged and recovery tactics were required on occasion. His sense of humour was endearing and had the lovely ability to laugh at himself. He told me the story not so long ago, about someone overhearing two people at another table in a restaurant talking about religious magazines. Finally they came to the Messenger; one said she loved the Messenger and she particularly liked Fr Murray whose photo was inside the front cover; he had a lovely smile, but then she added, “Of course, I don't believe a word of what he says”. A phone call to him was enough to raise one's heart and bring to the fore the lighter side of life.

The journey to Emmaus was made in the company of Jesus. Being a Jesuit, being in the Company of Jesus, walking the journey of life with Him was of central importance to Brendan. He was a good companion to all of us who walked with him. He contributed much, with most of his Jesuit life spent in leadership roles, often taking on difficult tasks and carrying them through. He was a dedicated worker, who had a bright, analytic, and preceptive mind, being a good judge of people and situations. While he could make the hard decision, he had a compassionate nature. He was loyal and faithful, with a generous heart, making his many talents available to others, whether it was taking on a new project, refurbishing a house, or closing one down. He had the flexibility to adapt to new situations and was at this best when under pressure. While he could get impatient at times, and sometimes he was not especially tolerant of lesser mortals, it tended to blow over quickly and it was soon forgotten.

In the Emmaus story, the opening of the word of God is significant. Brendan had a great love and appreciation for the word of God and opened it out to many. Most of his talks were based on Scripture, with a helpful story or two to lead into them. It was a living word for him; what he shared came from his own reflection and prayer and it spoke to many who heard him.

God's story of love, lived out in Jesus, met Brendan's story; he was generous in response. The gifts that God offered were those that Brendan, behind the mischievous smile and often subtle humour, wanted. Those latter years in the Messenger gave more scope to his creative side, to write, to edit, to design, and to help continue the updating of the magazine and its organisation. He relished the task and loved it, but he was good at it. The redoing and relocating so beautifully of the Evie Hone windows in Manresa also owed much to him. His attention to detail, ensuring that were placed where they would get maximum light, was carefully thought out. It could be said that in other areas, such as ordering a meal, he tended to be less creative and adventurous, there was a consistency there as he stayed with the tested and reliable. I suppose he could not be flexible on everything! Yet, there was something more than ordinary about him. He was forty-five when he learned to drive; he is the only person I know, who, on the successful completion of his driving test, came away with a Mass intention from his examiner!

He had the openness and freedom to walk with and accept the call of the Lord, letting the Lord enter his story in a new way. In that story there is a deepening of the call, as it moved towards the final part of it. He invited the Lord in, so that the Lord could reveal himself more intimately and break bread with him. Now the Lord has issued a new invitation; the journey is completed; the story has been told, the messenger's work is done, the banquet is ready. But we are to remember that story, interwoven with God's story; we are to live in its spirit, as we continue to walk on in faith.

We weep for his untimely passing, we will miss his gentle presence, but we are the richer for knowing him. His life is a good story, narrated by a very competent messenger. We pray that God will be merciful to him for any failings and give him the rewards of life that is eternal love, which is God's desire for him and for all of us. May he rest in peace.

-oOo-

Noel Barber wrote the following “Appreciation” for THE IRISH TIMES...
Fr. Brendan Murray, who died on March 14", aged 67, ploughed what many would consider infertile soil. For the past 10 years he edited a devotional religious magazine, The Sacred Heart Messenger. Many will be surprised, however, to learn that the circulation of The Messenger is well into six figures; surprised, too, to learn the range of its readership - from the very simple to the highly sophisticated. This magazine, an extraordinary survival, bears testimony to the fact that a religious monthly can still command a place in the market.

Its standard was high when he took over; the previous editors had adapted it to the needs and tastes of changing times without sacrificing its religious thrust. Building on the work of his predecessors, he brought to his task an exceptional attention to detail, an immense care with its artistic production, and a keen financial eye. His editorials, beautifully written with wit, verve and wisdom, touched a large and devoted readership; some have already expressed their sense of loss at the prospect of The Messenger without him.

He was born in Dublin on October 28th, 1934, to Frank Murray, a Civil Servant, and Lucy Dunne, one of nine children, of whom his brothers Frank and Declan and his sisters Colette Nolan, Maureen Flanagan and Carmel Murray survive him. He was educated by the Christian Brothers, Synge Street, and entered the Jesuit Novitiate at Emo Park, Portarlington, in 1952, He was an able and serious student, obtaining a good degree in Latin and Irish, and Licentiates in Philosophy and Theology. He had the capacity to become a specialist in any one of these disciplines. His character was a quixotic mix of high seriousness and earthy frivolity. There were few who could discuss better serious matters of literature, theology, philosophy - or art, in which he had a particular interest and a discriminating taste. On the other hand, he was a joker and prankster, a raconteur and mimic, who brightened many a dark afternoon for his fellow students. His stories grew in the telling in which his mentors, academic and religious, assumed a second existence.

After his Ordination in 1966, he held a variety of positions in all of which he used his considerable ability, charm and, when necessary, his formidable determination to achieve his purpose, be it in closing down a Retreat House, as Principal of a University Residence, as Chaplain to the Dublin Institute of Technology, or as a Superior of Jesuit Communities. He had outstanding pastoral skills as so many will testify: the priests who followed his retreats, the religious whom he counselled and people of all walks of life who came to receive his shrewd, kindly and practical advice. As a preacher and retreat giver he used his talents as a storyteller to great effect but his story telling was always at the service of a deep spirituality and sound common sense. These in turn reflected his warm, rich personality. In his case, the person was very much the message.

His friends were surprised that his fatal heart attack had not happened earlier. Despite his intelligence, wisdom, understanding of others and the advice of his brethren, his style of life was almost self-destructive. He worked impossibly long hours, took no exercise, rarely, if ever, had a holiday, and sustained himself on great quantities of nicotine and caffeine. He was a man of great goodness with an inexplicable disregard of himself. He will be greatly missed and it will take an exceptional person to fill his shoes.

Ó Cathain, Seán, 1905-1989, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/317
  • Person
  • 27 May 1905-26 December 1989

Born: 27 May 1905, Belfast, County Antrim
Entered: 31 August 1923, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1938, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1941, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 26 December 1989, Our Lady’s Hospice, Dublin

Part of the Sacred Heart community, Limerick at the time of death

Had studied Medicine for one year before entry

by 1930 at Berchmanskolleg, Pullach, Germany (GER S) studying

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 82 : September 1995

Obituary

Fr Seán Ó Catháin (1905-1989)

27th May 1905: Born in Belfast
31st Aug. 1923: Entered the Society of Jesus
1923 - 1925: Tullabeg, novitiate
1925 - 1929: Rathfarnham, juniorate: MA (UCD) in Celtic studies
1929 - 1931; Pullach bei München, Germany: philosophy
1931 - 1934: Galway, regency
1934 - 1939 Milltown Park
1934 - 1935: private study,
1935 - 1939 theology
1938: Ordained a priest
1939 - 1940: Rathfarnham, tertianship.
1940 - 1946: Leeson Street:
1940 - 1941 private study,
1941 - 1946 University Hall, vice principal, private study culminating in a PhD.
1946 - 1948: Clongowes, teaching
1948 - 1978; Leeson Street:
1949 - 1966 Lecturer at UCD's department of Education;
1966-1973 Professor of Education;
1950 - 1959 Inspector of studies in colleges of the Province.
1973 - 1978 writing.
1967 - 1973: Superior.
1978 - 1989: Limerick (Sacred Heart Residence): church work, librarian. In 1982 (also in October 1989) he suffered a stroke which impaired the memory function of his brain. After spending some time in St. John's Hospital, Limerick, he was removed to Our Lady's hospice, Harold's Cross, Dublin
26th Dec. 1989: Died

The following additional details concerning Seán's academic career have been gleaned from the Report of the President, UCD, 1972-3 (section on retirements) and 1989-'90 (obituary section). Seán gained four diplomas, all with first-class honours (the middle two in Irish), from one or other of three Irish university colleges: pre-medical (UCC, 1923), BA (UCD, 1928), MA (UCD, 1929), HDip in Ed (UCG, 1932). For his PhD in Ed (UCD, 1941) his thesis was on 'The diffusion of Renaissance ideals of education in the schools of the Jesuit Order'. 'During these years (seemingly 1932-48) he acted as an Assistant Extern Examiner (through Irish) in Education for the National University of Ireland.

Seán Ó Catháin was the second son of Seán and Kathleen nee Dinneen. Seán senior was a native of Kilbeheny, near Mitchelstown, while Kathleen from Rathmore, Co. Kerry. It was in London at the turn of the century that Seán, who had succeeded in the examinations for the civil service, found himself posted for work at the department of customs and excise. Kathleen Dinneen had qualified as a primary teacher and found employment also in London. They were both the children of Irish speaking parents.

Sometime about 1904 Seán Ó Catháin was transferred to Belfast. Some day a curious enquirer may discover whether his transfer was by way of promotion or downright exile to dour Belfast, where there were fewer Gaelic Leaguers!

Here our own Seán was born, and baptised at the parish church of the Sacred Heart, Oldpark Road. In due course he was confirmed at St. Patrick's parish church, Donegall Street. After primary school he was sent to St. Malachy's college and had all but completed his secondary schooling when his father was once more transferred to a very different location of the customs and excise. This time it was to Cork, not far from his native place. It is almost certain that the transfer was scheduled for the late spring of 1921 - a very significant date. Britain was busily partitioning Ireland in the administrative sector in preparation for political partition and the opening of a new Six-county parliament on 22nd June 1921. In fact, the separation of the administrative files of government had been going quietly on even before the general election and victory of Sinn Féin in December 1918! All this underhand work was unknown or unsuspected, apparently, by the young republican politicians, the heirs of 1916!

Seán junior resumed his secondary schooling at the North Monastery CBS in June 1922. He entered the medical school at UCC, but in the event he was not destined to become a medical doctor.

In 1923 Seán senior was transferred to Dublin, In August Seán junior entered the novitiate at Tullabeg, and in due course made his first religious profession. In after years he often spoke of his privilege to have spent his first year as a novice under the direction of the saintly Fr. Michael Browne. He went to Rathfarnham Castle where he was to spend four years. At UCD he won scholarships; at home he was a live-wire in the Irish Society, and every Christmas distinguished himself as an actor in the Irish plays. He crowned his career at Rathfarnham with a first-class-honours MS in Celtic studies.

He was next appointed to the philosophate at Pullach, where he graduated DPh of the Gregorian university. Bilingual from infancy, it is not to be wondered at that he acquired an enviable mastery of the German language. Later he added Italian and French to his linguistic accomplishments.

Back in Ireland he was appointed to Galway for his regency, and it was during this period that Fr. Timothy Corcoran, professor of education at UCD, began to take an interest in Seán as a future successor in his own chair at Earlsfort terrace. These were happy years in a youthful, full and flourishing province, with only an occasional rumour of trouble trickling into Ireland from Hitler's Germany. But peace in Europe was already openly threatened when Seán was ordained priest in 1938. By the summer of 1940 he had completed his fourth year of theology and made his tertianship.

He was now appointed to Leeson Street for private study. Here under the watchful eye of Fr. Corcoran he began his studies in education that would lead to another doctorate. By an odd turn of events his prospects of eventually succeeding to the Chair of Education diminished considerably before the year was over. Fr. Corcoran's health had not been robust of late but he battled on - not only conducting his own lectures but also supplying for his assistant, Mr. W J Williams, who had recently suffered a stroke. It was anticipated that Williams, who was within a very few years of retirement, would resign, but when Fr. Corcoran himself was obliged on medical grounds to resign in September 1942, Williams declared he was going forward for Fr. Corcoran's chair. Meantime the Provincial and consultors (at the urging of members of the Hierarchy) put forward the name of Fr. Fergal McGrath as candidate. (No complaint was ever heard from Fr. Seán.) However, as soon as Fr. McGrath learned of Williams' intention, he immediately withdrew his name - and Williams secured the professorship. He had to retire in 1948. Since 1942 Fr. Seán was stationed as vice-warden at Hatch Street, where he continued work on his doctoral thesis. At the end of this study he spent the years 1946-48 as a master at Clongowes, and 1950-59 - with his characteristic thoroughness - Seán carried out the duties of inspector of our province's schools.

In 1948, when the chair of education was once more vacant, Fr. Seán allowed his name to go forward, and found overwhelming support in the electoral body. However, for the next eighteen years he enjoyed the title (and salary) of lecturer only and not professor. It was an open secret that the late Professor Michael Tierney had used all his considerable influence to downgrade the chair of education. Tierney's hostility dated from the time (1920's and 1930's) when his political views attracted strong opposition in The Catholic Bulletin, on the editorial board of which Fr. Timothy Corcoran's word was law.

In 1966 came belated acknowledgement of Fr. Seán's ability and worth when he was accorded the rank of professor. However, I always felt that the seven years during which he held the professorship were wearying if not even distasteful to a man of his sensitivity. It is enough to recall here that in 1968 student unrest in France spilled out all over Europe and across the Atlantic, and in the universities civilised behaviour, good manners and respect for any authority were the first casualties.

During his later years as professor, when he was also superior at Leeson Street, Seán's health was not robust. He suffered much from sleeplessness, yet during the thirteen years I lived with him he never missed an appointment and was exemplary for punctuality. A product of the old school, that is, brought up in the province to value the necessity of co-operation whether in teaching, church work, parochial missions etc, he lived in no ivory tower of academia. He was interested in everybody and everything connected with the Irish province, and that meant all our fathers, scholastics and brothers, and the works they were engaged in. He had an authentic apostolic bent, as could be deduced from his active interest in the work of two societies, one named after St. Vincent de Paul and the other called St. Joseph's Young Priests. He was an excellent community man, incapable of pulling a long face at table or recreation: he simply radiated a sense of fun. It was a delight to hear him enter the lists with Fr. Frank Shaw, My own impression was that if they had chosen the law for their profession, both would have gained celebrity as advocates.

As superior, Seán tended to be over-scrupulous, but against this he was particularly caring for the sick and generously sympathetic in times of bereavement. Like Fr's Fergal McGrath († 1988) and Redmond Roche († 1983) he acquired an almost legendary reputation for attendance at funerals. 1973 seemed to be the end of his active life; early that autumn he resigned from the chair of education and two months earlier had been replaced as superior of Leeson Street. The next five years he spent in quiet study and in a ministry within his capacity.

An unexpected challenge awaited him in 1978. The Provincial was faced with diminishing manpower, and one of our churches, the Crescent, rather urgently needed an operarius. The difficult proposal was made to Seán, a Dubliner of long standing, and now in his seventies. Generously, as was the custom of this province, he answered the call of duty and courageously entered on a new and unaccustomed way of life. In Limerick, while his fragile health remained, he gave of his best; but the last years must have been frustrating for a man of his once boundless nervous energy. In 1989 he seemed to rally somewhat, and twice at least attended funerals in Gardiner Street, but his years were telling against him. At length he had to go into St. John's hospital, Limerick, whence he was taken back to Dublin to spend the short time that remained to him at Our Lady's hospice, Harold's Cross. There, on St. Stephen's Day, God called him home.

Tá an tAthair Seán imithe uainn ar shlí na firinne, agus tá uaigneas orainn dá dheasca sin go bhfeicimid arís sna Flaithis é; ach idir an dá linn guímis go bhfaigh a anam dilis suaimhneas síoraí, go raibh sé faoi bhrat Mhuire i radharc na Trionóide.

Proinsias Ó Fionnagáin

Ó Duibhir, Seán, 1921-2007, Jesuit priest and Irish language editor

  • IE IJA J/583
  • Person
  • 21 April 1921-23 October 2007

Born: 21 April 1921, Limerick City, County Limerick
Entered: 07 September 1939, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1953, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 05 November 1977, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 23 October 2007, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Editor of An Timire, 1949-71.

Part of the Milltown Park, Dublin community at the time of death.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 138 : Christmas 2008

Obituary

Fr Seán Ó Duibhir (1921-2007)

21st April 1921: Born in Limerick City
Early education in Colaiste na Rinne, Co. Portlairge; CBS Limerick and Crescent College, Limerick
7th September 1939: Entered the Society at Emo
8th September 1941: First Vows at Emo
1941 - 1944: Rathfarnham - Studied Arts at UCD
1944 - 1947: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1947 - 1950: Galway - Regency; Teacher
1950 - 1954: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
31 July 1953: Ordained at Milltown Park
1954 - 1955: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1956 - 1957: Crescent College, Limerick - Teacher, Assisted Prefect of Studies
1957 - 1964: Galway -
1957 - 1961: Teacher
1961 - 1964: Assisted in Church
1964 - 1969: Tullabeg - Minister; Asst. Dir. Spiritual Exercises
1969 - 1970: Rathfarnham - Promoted Spiritual Exercises, Manresa, Milltown,
1970 - 1971: Milltown - Promoted Sp. Ex., and in Rathfarnham
1971 - 1976: SFX, Gardiner St, -
1971 - 1975: Assisted in Church
1975 - 1976: Assistant Editor, “An Timire” and FÁS
1976 - 1980: Leeson Street - Writer; Assistant Editor “An Timire”
5th November 1977: Final Vows
1980 - 1983: SFX, Gardiner Street - Assistant Editor “An Timire” and FÁS; Assisted in Church
1983 - 1984: Rathfarnham - Assisted in Gardiner Street Church
1984 - 1990: Gardiner Street - Assistant Editor “An Timire”
1990 - 2006: Church of the Sacred Heart, Crescent, Limerick: Assisted in Church and Church Shop; Manager FÁS; Promoter of “Messenger”
1997 - 1998: Assisted in Church and Church shop; Manager FÁS
1998 - 2004: Assisted in Church and shop; Spiritual Director (SJ)
2004 - 2006: Assisted in Church; Spiritual Director (SJ);
2006 - 2007: Milltown Park -Prayer for Church and Society
23rd October 2007: Died in St. Vincent's Hospital, Dublin

Kevin Laheen writes:
In September 1939 the Master of Novices called me to his room and told me that he was appointing me Angelus of two new arrivals. He said that their names were Oliver O'Brien from Dublin and Seán O'Dwyer from Limerick. I knew Oliver very well as he had been a year behind me in Belvedere, but both Seán and Limerick were unknown quantities to me. In the following ten days as I prepared both of them to receive the Jesuit gown, I learned a lot about Seán. His father was either a doctor or a dentist, was nationalist in politics and had been of considerable help from time to time to the “boys on the run”. His father spoke Irish as the occasion demanded but it was not the language of the family home. He was determined that Seán should “get a good start” in the Irish Language and so sent him to Ring College for his early schooling. He was registered there as Seán Ó Duibhir while later on in the rolls of the Crescent he was recorded as Sean O'Dwyer. In the Society he used the English form of his name, but from 1974 onwards he was in the Catalogue by the Irish form of his name given to him in Ring College. In his early years in the Society he spent some years teaching both in Galway and in his old school, the Crescent.

Ten years after ordination he was involved for the first time in administration when appointed Minister in Tullabeg. He also assisted in organising the retreats for the recently opened Retreat House there. As Minister he put his stamp on the house. He hung new pictures along the corridors, placed vases of flowers in the parlour and other places, but above all he gave a new look to the refectory when bare tables were banned and snow white table cloths were introduced. When I commented favourably on these changes he said his aim was to make Tullabeg look like a home and not just an institution. Bro. Guidera, who knew Tullabeg and its traditions better than anyone else, was delighted with the new Minister because he was consulted and his advice was valued. Both of them worked well as a team.

Seán's love of the Irish language was evident but he never forced it on those whose knowledge of the language was not up to his own level. He was a great collector of English phrases which owed their origin to their Irish roots. It was natural that with his facility in this area he was appointed promoter of An Timire. Seán at heart was a pastoral man and his work for this magazinę gave him contact with a wide circle of people. He often told me that this gave him wide scope for assisting and advising people spiritually, to say nothing of the opportunities it gave him for hearing the occasional confession. Stories about his experiences while promoting An Timire abound, One day when he parked his car in a forbidden area close to the barracks in Athlone the military got suspicious feeling that the car might contain a bomb. They were about to blow it open when Seán arrived just in time to stop them. One of the officers was a native of Galway whose first language was Irish so the rest of the story needs no telling. He gave each soldier a free copy of An Timire. Several times, especially in Kerry, he often had to answer five or six questions before he received an answer to his own. This was especially true when he asked information about a certain Sheila O'Shea who lived in Ballyferriter and for whom Sean had twelve copies of An Timire. By the end of the conversation the Kerryman knew more about Sean than Sean learned either about him or Sheila. But as it turned out the man and Sheila were next door neighbours and he offered to deliver the books to her himself, thus saving Sean a drive of some twenty miles.

His work for An Timire made it possible for him to join me occasionally in giving a parish mission. During the very busy days of a mission he often found an opportunity for discreetly but effectively promoting the sale of An Timire. Although he was never a member of the Province Mission Staff, he loved to join me in giving a mission and did so on at least fifteen occasions. He preached very well because he prepared his sermons with great care and was always very much at home in the pulpit. He had a fine voice and his articulation was perfect. He told me that Donal O'Sullivan once advised him to "always preach to that deaf man in the back bench of the church and all the other members of the congregation will hear you". He certainly took that advice and acted on it. He had no time for preachers who used a lazy conversational style when preaching, a style more suitable for the parlour rather than for the pulpit.

His sermons on faith, mercy and prayer were memorable. He referred to death as a reawakening to a joyful reality of which our faith had assured us. In his days in the classroom he had developed a gift for dealing with young people and he was always a great hit with the youth of a parish. The inission in the Irish speaking parish of Inchigeela was one of the last ones which we gave together. There was a man there who had not been to Mass for twenty years because the bishop forbade the use of the Irish language in Mass. At least that was his excuse. But Sean told him that the bishop in question was then dead and that Irish was used in the Mass and that both he and Fr. Laheen had used Irish in the prayers and sermons during the mission.

The old man then said, “Well Father, in that case I'll go back to Mass, again not because that new bishop allowed the Irish in the Mass, but because I never knew there was a priest in the county that had such good Irish as yourself”.

We closed that mission at the second morning Mass on the last Sunday. We then had lunch with a local family as the parish priest had to leave early to join the Bishop for confirmation in another parish. Sean wanted to get the 2.30 bus back to Limerick but the woman of the house said the bus for Limerick never left on time and was always late in doing so. But that was not true, They had deliberately kept him an extra hour because they had secretly decided to drive him all the way back to Limerick in their own big family car, thus having the pleasure of his company for a longer period. This was just one indication of how the people of Ireland valued and loved him. The old granny of the house, enthroned in her big armchair close to the fire said, “May God bless you, Fr. Seán. Sure we would like to keep you here with us all the time because there is the makings of a fine Parish Priest in you”.

Seán then drove off north to Limerick while I drove south to Goleen where I began another parish mission there that same evening. May he now awaken to that joy he promised to so many congregations when he assured them of it from the pulpits throughout Ireland. May he rest in peace.

O'Brien, John, 1839-1915, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1855
  • Person
  • 01 January 1839-20 March 1915

Born: 01 January 1839, Clare Island, County Mayo
Entered: 30 December 1864, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 02 February 1875
Died: 20 March 1915, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He made his Novitiate under Luigi Sturzo and remained at Milltown as a cook for a while afterwards.
1868 He was sent to Tullabeg as cook, where he did excellent work under Father William Delany, who was 10 years Rector there.
He was then moved to Belvedere for a while, and after a short interval at Gardiner St, he went to UCD, where he worked for a long period. He died leaving a fine record of work at Leeson St 20 March 1915

It may not be out of place to mention that Edmund Hogan stated that the Italian Fathers told James Butler, of Clongowes fame, in 1805, that an Irish Jesuit Synnott was the last to leave off the Jesuit habit worn at the time of the Suppression in 1773 - “Go and tell His Holiness that it was an Irishman was the last member to put aside the habit”. So, Brother O’Brien was the last Brother to put aside the tall-hat in 1892 in obedience to the order of the Provincial Timothy Kenny.

Note from Michael O’Reilly Entry :
Towards the end of his life he was sent to Leeson St, and just before his death to Milltown, where he died 16 September 1915 - six months after John O’Brien.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - DOB 12 March 1840 Killaloe, Co Clare; Ent 04 January 1865; Cooper before entry

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Brother John O’Brien SJ 1840-1915
Br John O’Brien was born in Killaloe on March 12th 1840. He did his noviceship in Milltown Park under Fr Sturzo in 1865.

He was faithful and efficient as a cook in many of our houses, notably in Tullabeg, where Fr Delaney was Rector for 10 years. He was then moved to Belvedere and finally to University College, where he worked a for a long period. He died on March 20th 1915, leaving a fine record of useful and hidden labour.

It may not be out of place to record here a fact stated by Fr Hogan, that the Italian Fathers told Fr James Butler, of Clongowes fame, that an Irish Jesuit names Synott, was the last to leave off the Jesuit habit worn at the time of the Suppression 1773 : “Go and tell His Holiness that it was an Irishman was the last member to lay aside the habit”. So, Br O’Brien was that last Irish Brother to lay aside the tall-hat, in obedience to Fr Timothy Kenny, Provincial of Ireland from 1888 to 1894.

O'Connell, Patrick, 1920-1997, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/533
  • Person
  • 07 September 1920-11 February 1997

Born: 07 September 1920, Galway City, County Galway
Entered: 07 September 1938, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 08 September 1951, Heythrop College, Oxford, England
Final Vows: 02 February 1956, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 11 February 1997, St Vincent’s Hospital Dublin

Part of the Manresa, Dollymount, Dublin community at the time of death.

by 1949 at Heythrop, Oxfordshire (ANG) studying
by 1963 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying
by 1972 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 92 : August 1996

Obituary

Fr Patrick (Paddy) O’Connell (1920-1997)

7th Sept. 1920: Born in Galway.
Early education: Presentation Brothers, Cork and Belvedere College
7th Sept. 1938: Entered the Society at Emo
1940 - 1944: Rathfarnham, studied Classics at UCD
1944 - 1947: Tullabeg, studied Philosophy
1947 - 1948: Belvedere College, Regency
1948 - 1952: Heythrop College, studied Theology
8th Sept. 1951: Ordained at Heythrop College
1952 - 1953: Rathfarnham, Tertianship
1953 - 1955: Gonzaga College, teaching
1955 - 1961: Milltown Park, teaching Dogma and Church History
1961 - 1963: Rome, Oriental Inst., Study : Oriental Church History
1963 - 1967; Milltown Park, Prof. Fundamental Theology
1967 - 1970: Rome, Gregorian - (Apr - Oct)
1970 - 1971: Sabbatical year
1971 - 1972: Milltown Park (Sem 1), Rome (Sem 2)
1973 - 1974: Rome: Dean, Faculty of Oriental Theology and Superior of the Community
1974 - 1984: Leeson St. - Editor of “Studies”
1984 - 1997: Manresa: Curate, St. Gabriel's Parish

Fr. Paddy O'Connell was born in Galway on the 7th September 1920. His father, who was from Kerry, was a school inspector. He began his schooling with the Presentation Brothers, Cork and finished in Belvedere College. In 1938 on his eighteenth birthday he joined the Jesuits. After two years noviceship in Emo, near Portarlington, his long years of study began. Four years at UCD obtaining an MA in Latin and Greek, three years philosophy in Rahan, Co. Offaly and four years theology in England where he was ordained in 1951. In the early sixties he obtained a doctorate in Theology in Rome.

Fr. Paddy was at home among books of all kinds, but they were not his only love. He was keen on sport and current affairs. He was very much himself in the company of young people; what interested them interested him. For a number of years while teaching theology in Milltown Park he was the rugby trainer of Presentation College, Bray. Apart from teaching in the Milltown Institute, where he served as Dean of the Faculty of Theology, he also taught briefly in Belvedere and Gonzaga in Dublin and at the Oriental Institute in Rome where he was Rector in 1973-74. In the ten years before coming to St. Gabriel's he was editor of the Jesuit Review Studies. Up until recently he acted as censor of several Jesuit magazines. He learned to read quickly!

When Fr. Paddy was appointed to St. Gabriel's he lived for a while in Manresa before he had a house in the parish. However, he always remained a member of the Manresa community and had his dinner there a few days a week.

Of all the jobs he had as a priest the one that made him happiest was his time in St. Gabriel's. There is no giving without receiving. As he gave himself tirelessly to young and old, Fr. Paddy received encouragement and support for his life as a Jesuit priest. His Jesuit brothers wish to thank all of you in the parish who helped him find happiness in serving in the parish in his final twelve years.

His younger brother John was priest of the Dublin diocese and died ten years ago while parish priest of Brackenstown. Fr. Paddy is survived by his sisters, Nora in England and Maureen in Canada, and his many nieces and nephews and their families.

Ar dheis Dé ar a anam.

Charlie Davy

-oOo-

It is not a case of what can one say about Fr. O'Connell, rather one wonders what can one leave out when writing about him. He was such a “Complete Human Being” in every sense of the word and a wonderful Priest. He truly lived his vocation and gave 200% all of the time, never thinking of himself.

Academically he had reached great heights yet he was a very humble man. He loved his work in this parish and he loved the people and was always concerned for them. He took unto himself a lot of the worries and problems of those he served.

There was another side to Fr. O'Connnell. Yes he always had a smile and a greeting whenever he met you, he was most gracious. Then he would start joking and pulling the leg and all in good fun; he was the best of company. One of his favourite television programmes was Taggart, and when Taggart actor Mark McManus died, Fr. O'Connell celebrated a Mass for him. This was his way of saying “Thank You” for the hours of pleasure and relaxation he had received.

There are so many wonderful memories of Fr. O'Connell, but the one I will hold onto is seeing him on a sunny morning sitting on the concrete parapet under the portico outside the sacristy, the jacket open, a cigarette in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other and delighted to chat to anyone who happened to come along.

We have lost a good friend and a wonderful character but as followers of Christ we must rejoice for him now and thank the good Lord for giving us the privilege of knowing him. He died on the feast of our Lady of Lourdes. May he rest in peace.

Focus 2000 Group

-oOo-

Fr. Paddy has been our much loved Spiritual Director almost since he came to the Parish more than 12 years ago. During all that time members of the branch and all parishioners who wished to attend, had the spiritual benefit of the Mass which he offered and a short talk before the monthly meetings he attended.

At the monthly meetings we had the benefit of his advice, encouragement and help in the recruitment of new members for whom he was always on the look-out, all of which has helped to ensure that our branch remains vibrant.

Over the years he arranged a number of Sunday "Afternoons of Prayer" at the Little Sisters of the Poor Church in Sybil Hill and in the Parish Church. His care for the problems of members, especially sick members, was much appreciated.

Ar dheis De go raibh a ainm dilis.

St. Joseph's Young Priest Society

-oOo-

For several years now Fr. O'Connell has been holding a Bible Class on Tuesday nights and all who attended feel so privileged to have participated.
The members of this group wish to acknowledge the tremendous amount of work and preparation he put into it each week and how much we have all learned. It was all very informal but he made all
the readings come to life for us.

Not only will we miss our Bible studies but we will miss the grand finale of each session when he celebrated Mass for us and then provided a couple of large pavlovas with the tea!

Bible Study Group

-oOo-

The people of Dollymount Grove are grieving the loss of a Neighbour and Friend as well as their priest. Fr. O'Connell was a familair sight driving in and out, doing a wide U-turn to park in his usual spot, and God help anyone who got in the way! He was always ready to stop for à chat and knew everyone he met, down to their dislikes and failings, which he worked on to his advantage. But he also knew their good points and never missed an opportunity to offer praise and encouragement.

He was keen on gardening - especially watching other people - and was always quick to point out the weeds. He loved children and they returned his affection. He could not pass the boys playing football on the road without joining in, and indeed sadly he was seen out with then just a few short weeks ago.

Fr. O'Connell was welcomed in every house and brought consolation and comfort to the elderly and the lonely. He was new to parish work when he came to St. Gabriel's in 1983 and frequently became distresssed after being with people in their last hours. He never lost this emotion and could empathise with those in grief and sorrow. But he did not dwell on sadness for long and used his ability and will to force a smile and lift a heart in even the darkest situations

Auaimhneas siorai ar a anam uasal.

Dollymount Grove

-oOo-

Fr. O'Connell was one of us yet he was also a man apart. His deep knowledge of theology was coupled with a childlike innocence of expression. He brought the comfort of Christ to many, particularly those he visited at home. His rare gift of heart-warming laughter brightened our days.

No trained journalist could have lowered barriers of reserve more quickly. He became both friend and pastor. When our family suffered a bereavement Fr. O'Connell suffered too. Yet he made us aware that death is a new beginning, that there is joy in Heaven, Fr. O'Connell was the epitome of Christianity. He was Christlike.

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

A Personal Tribute

O'Donnell, J Kevin, 1908-1991, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/538
  • Person
  • 28 January 1908-11 June 1991

Born: 28 January 1908, Dublin
Entered: 21 September 1925, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1938, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1941, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 11 June 1991, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson St, Dublin

Early education at Belvedere College SJ

O'Keefe, T Edmund, 1927-2011, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/790
  • Person
  • 25 April 1927-13 October 2011

Born: 25 April 1927, Castlereagh, County Roscommon/Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1945, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1959, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 05 November 1977, John Austin House, Dublin
Died: 13 October 2011, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Milltown Park, Dublin community at the time of death.

Older brother of Fergus

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/fr-edmund-okeefe-rip/

Fr Edmund O’Keefe RIP
Fr Edmund (Ned) O’Keefe died peacefully in St Vincent’s Hospital on 13th October, at the age of 84. We offer sincere condolences to his younger brothers Fergus SJ and Niall, and to his wider family. Though born in Castlereagh, Ned lived and worked mainly in the Dublin area, teaching for many years in the colleges of technology. He spent himself especially on two causes, devotion to the Sacred Heart, and the canonisation of Fr John Sullivan. He worked on the staff of the Sacred Heart Messenger, and produced a Novena to the Sacred Heart for radio. He gave similar energy to the Cause of Fr Sullivan, and produced a CD on John’s life. He spent the last year of his life in fragile health in Cherryfield, but remained to the end an active and engaged member of the Milltown Park community.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 147 : Spring 2012

Obituary

Fr T Edmund (Ned) O’Keefe (1927-2011)

25 April 1927: Born in Dublin.
Early education at Templerainey National School, CBS Secondary, Callan and Clongowes
7 September 1945: Entered the Society at Emo
8 September 1947: First Vows at Emo
1947 - 1950: Rathfarnham - Studied Arts at UCD
1950 - 1953: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1953 - 1956: Clongowes - "Gallery Prefect"; Teacher (History and Geography)
1956 - 1960: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
31st July 1959: Ordained at Milltown Park, Dublin
1960 - 1961: Tertianship at St. Beuno's
1961 - 1962: Clongowes -- Third Line Prefect; Teacher (History, Geography and RK)
5 November 1977: Final Vows
1962 - 1963: College of Industrial Relations - Teaching in Rathmines College of Commerce (and and 3rd level)
1963 - 1966: Emo - Minister; Socius to Novice Director
1966 - 1974: SFX, Gardiner Street - Assisted in the Church; Chaplain to Kevin Street College of Technology
1974 - 1979: Austin House - Head Chaplain at Kevin Street DIT and Lecturer in Bioethics
1979 - 1980: Leeson Street - Head Chaplain at Kevin Street DIT
1980 - 1982: SFX Gardiner Street - Assistant Director of Pioneers; Assisted in Church
1982 - 1984: Campion House - Promoter of the Apostleship of Prayer and the Messenger
1984 - 1996: Austin House - Promoter of the Apostleship of Prayer and the Messenger
1992 - 1996: Sabbatical (to January 1993); John Sullivan Cross Apostolate
1996 - 2003: Belvedere College - Assistant Vice-Postulator of John Sullivan SJ Cause
2003 - 2011: Milltown Park - Assisted in Community; Assistant Vice-Postulator of John Sullivan SJ Cause
2010: Milltown Park - Residing at Cherryfield Lodge - praying for the Church and the Society
13th October 2011: Died Cherryfield

Fr. O'Keefe was admitted to Cherryfield Lodge in September 2009 following surgery. He improved fairly rapidly and was happy to stay on in our Nursing Home. He deteriorated over the last six months and was transferred to St. Vincent's Hospital after suffering a stroke three weeks ago. In the last week, it was clear that he was not going to recover. Family members and Jesuits kept an eye on him and prayed at his bedside up to the end. He died peacefully in hospital on the morning of 13th October 2011. May he rest in the Peace of Christ

Obituary : Paul Andrews
Ned was what he liked to be called, although he had lived through many changes: Edmund from birth, then Brother O'Keefe in the noviciate, and Mr O'Keefe in Rathfarnham, and Nedser in Tullabeg. He had grown accustomed to changes as he moved with his parents from one bank house to another: Castlerea, Sligo, Arklow, Callan. For six years, until the arrival of Fergus, and later Mary and Niall, Ned was an only child, but he showed an older brother's sense of responsibility.

Of his various homes, he would look back on the seven years in Arklow, from the age of 6 to 13, as the idyllic years: a little town where there were friends and fishermen, a reasonable school, a beach, a harbour for messing about in boats, Jack Tyrrell's boatyard, and the chance to ride a pony and join the hunt. The move to Callan and the CBS was hard. Ned found himself among Kilkenny farmers' sons, but was clueless about hurling, and living in the Bank House was seen as a wealthy outsider. It was a relief to move to Clongowes at fifteen, and to make new friends. He became a Pioneer and remained one all his life. He joined the Sodality and the FCA, and absorbed some memories of Fr John Sullivan, who was to be very important in his priestly life. He received his first Communion on the Feast of Saint Aloysius, 1934, and that was the name he took at Confirmation. His godmother gave him a statue of Aloysius, which graced the mantelpiece of his bedroom. So Ned moved like Aloysius into the Company of Jesus, and went to Emo in 1945. In giving his life to God he had a powerful model in his mother's cousin, Edel Quinn.

There was one special feature in his years of Jesuit formation. He did his tertianship in St Beuno's under Fr Paul Kennedy, an experience he always treasured. After it he was delighted to be appointed to Clongowes as Third Line Prefect, a job he loved. But only a year later Visitor McMahon scattered a large part of the Clongowes community, and Ned found himself a chaplain and teacher in the Colleges of Technology, first in Rathmines, later as Head Chaplain in Kevin Street. Not the easiest of assignments, but Ned brought a special strength to it. Unusually for a priest, he joined the Teachers' Union of Ireland, so that he could speak for those who needed a spokesman. He contributed much to the chaplain's role, lectured well on Bioethics, and created a Social Action group among the students. One summer he brought a group of building apprentices to work on a building project of the Kiltegan Fathers in the desert of Turkhana, Kenya, to show them a poverty more profound than anything in Dublin.

In his early fifties Ned moved to a new ministry: he spent eight years promoting the Sacred Heart Messenger and the Apostleship of Prayer, mostly in the West of Ireland. He claimed to have brought them into every school in County Clare, and reached a still wider audience when he collaborated with Stephen Redmond to produce a Novena to the Sacred Heart for local radio.

In 1992 Ned took up the apostolate of Fr John Sullivan's Cross, and was Assistant Vice-Postulator of Fr John's cause. He produced two videos, with great help from the Kairos group of SVD priests in Maynooth; they are still in use today. These interests stayed with him to the end of his days, when he lived in Milltown Park and finally in Cherryfield.

How will we remember Ned? As a devoted Jesuit, hard on himself, but with a kind and compassionate spirit - he would always speak up for those he felt were hard done by. A contemporary called him “one of the kindest Jesuits I have ever known”. He was a gentleman, with impeccable manners and easy social graces, a stickler for propriety, with total integrity; the soul of discretion, never gossiping about community life, telling no tales out of school; a man who worried, and tried to anticipate problems – the boot of his car held equipment to face almost any emergency from the Arctic to the Tropics. His nephews and nieces remember his sense of fun, the twinkle in his eye, and the educational tours he would give them as children. He was devoted to, and immensely proud of his extended family, and grieved over the loss of his only sister Mary, who herself had buried both her husband. Hugh and one of her children. Her son John McGeogh was to die in a rafting accident in Austria in 1999.

Ned faced the diminutions of age with courage: the loss of his car - a hard blow – and reduction to a walking frame, then a wheelchair, and finally a mandatory escort whenever he went outside the house. But to the end he was a real presence, felt both at community meetings in Milltown, and at the prayers of the faithful at Cherryfield Mass. May the Lord be good to his gentle soul.

O'Mahony, Jerome C, 1869-1930, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/758
  • Person
  • 28 November 1869-24 April 1930

Born: 28 November 1869, Kilmallock, Co Limerick/Charleville, County Cork
Entered: 14 September 1888, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 1903
Professed: 15 August 1905
Died: 24 April 1930, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

Older brother of Francis O’Mahony - RIP 1893 a Novice

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Chaplain in the First World War.

by 1892 at Exaeten College, Limburg, Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1904 at Linz, Austria (AUS) making Tertianship
by 1917 Military Chaplain : 43rd General Hospital, Salonica, Greece
by 1918 Military Chaplain : SS Egypt, c/o GPO London
by 1919 Military Chaplain : PL of C, Haifa, Palestine, EEF

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Older brother of Francis O’Mahony - RIP 1893 a Novice

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 5th Year No 4 1930
Obituary :
Fr Jerome O’Mahony
Fr. O’Mahony was born in Charleville, Co. Cork, 28 Nov. 1869, educated at Tullabeg, and entered the noviceship at Tullabeg (which had just become the novitiate of the province) 14 Sept. 1888. Here he remained for three years, the last of them as Junior, and then went to Exaeten for philosophy. In 1892 he was sent to Clongowes, where he was prefect for two
years, then a year at Belvedere, followed by five years at Mungret, four as master and one as prefect. In all, regency for eight years. After three years theology at Milltown he travelled to Linz for the tertianship.
In 1904, he was back in Mungret as prefect, a year in Galway came next, and then Mungret once more, prefect for five years. The Crescent had him as Minister and master from 1911 to 1913. In the latter years he was transferred to Milltown, where he had charge of the Retreat House for three years.
The great war was raging in 1916 and Fr O'Mahony became a Military Chaplain. His first post was in Salonika, where he was stationed in the General Hospital. Next year he was Chaplain on board the SS Egypt, and in 1918 we find him at Haifa, Palestine.
The war over, he returned to the Crescent, where, for two years, he was again Minister and master. Then a year in Milltown in charge of the Retreat House, and another in Galway, “Doc. Oper”. In all, Fr O’Mahony put in 20 years teaching. The last change came in1923 when he joined the Leeson St staff as prefect of University Hall. There he remained for seven years, until his death on Thursday 24 April 1930.
Fr O'Mahony's was the second very sudden death that took place in the province during the year. In the morning he complained of being unwell, told the servant that he was not to be disturbed during the day and went to his room. As he did not appear at dinner people began to he anxious. One of the Fathers went to look for him, entered his room and found him lying on the bed, dead. He was at once anointed by Fr. Superior.
Fr O’Mahony's life was very like the lives of the vast majority of Jesuits all the world over. It was a life of steady, constant, hard work. Hidden work. Nothing striking about it to attract attention. It is one more example of the cog in the wheel, hidden in the body of the machine, working away unnoticed, but, at the same time, helping to keep the machine in motion and produce, it may be, very brilliant results. Such a life did Fr O’Mahony lead to the very end. In recent years we often heard about high class lectures, on practical moral questions of the present day, read in University Hall by distinguished men, clerical and lay ; and about the brilliant discussions that followed each of them, in which some of the leading men in Dublin took part. But we never heard a single word of Fr O’Mahony's connection with these brilliant gatherings. Yet this is what the “National Student” has to say on the subject : “Those who were present at these gatherings will remember how much of their success was due to the patient, persevering manner in which Fr. O’Mahony succeeded in inducing several of the speakers, not only to be present, but even - still more reluctantly - to contribute personally to a discussion that owed its value to its representative character. And the same quiet perseverance was often successful in bringing more than one distinguished lecturer to speak to the students in a smaller gathering at University Hall”. His life effort was, to a great extent, unnoticed by human eye, and what now matters to Fr O'Mahony - nothing at all. But that effort was constantly observed by another eye, from which nothing can be concealed, and that now matters, and for a very long time to come will matter a very great deal indeed. RIP.

O'Mara, Thomas, 1882-1933, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1927
  • Person
  • 11 September 1882-24 February 1933

Born: 11 September 1882, Adelaide, Australia
Entered: 07 September 1904, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 16 May 1918, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1921, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 24 February 1933, St Mary’s, Miller St, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Older brother of Richard O’Mara - RIP 1977

by 1908 at Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands (TOLO) studying
by 1909 at Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands (TOLO) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1910

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Thomas O’Mara, brother of Richard, came from a well known Adelaide family, prominent in business, which donated “Ellangowan” to the Society. A window in the chapel at Riverview is a memorial to him. O'Mara was educated at Xavier College and came to Riverview in 1896, entering the Society, 7 September 1904, at Tullabeg. Having completed his noviciate and juniorate studies, O’Mara studied philosophy at Gemert, Holland.
He returned to Australia for regency at Riverview, 1910-15, where he was editor of “Our Alma Mater”, and a division prefect. He returned to Ireland and Milltown Park for theology studies in 1915. He was ordained priest in 1918. Tertianship followed at Tullabeg, 1919-20.
His first appointment back in Australia was to Xavier College where he was hall prefect, choirmaster, and minister, and involved with debating. He taught later at St Patrick's College,
1930-31, and was appointed headmaster of Burke Hall, 1931-32. He spent a few years, 1928-30, in the parish of Hawthorn. However, his health began to decline and he went to Sydney, dying soon after his arrival.
O’Mara is remembered as a happy religious. His cheerfulness was characteristic of his life. His students remembered him for his kindness and helpfulness, which made him very approachable and encouraging.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 8th Year No 2 1933
Obituary :
Father Thomas O’Mara - Australia Viceprovince (ASL)
Father O'Mara died in Australia on Sunday, 19th February, 1933.
He was born 11th September, 1882. On 7th September, 1904, he began his novitiate at Tullabeg, and when it was over spent another year there as Junior. He was then sent to Gemert where he put in three years as Philosopher. On returning to Australia in 1910 he was stationed at Riverview where he remained for give years as Master, Prefect, Editor of “Alma Mater”. 1915 saw him back in Ireland for Theology at Milltown Park, and when the four years were over, Tullabeg once more as Tertian.
Back again in Australia , in 1921 he was appointed to Xavier, Kew. and here he worked for seven years, four of them as Minister, then to Hawthorn as Oper for two. In 1930 we find him at St. Patrick's with “an. 14 mag” after his name.

O'Neill, George, 1863-1947, Jesuit priest and academic

  • IE IJA J/21
  • Person
  • 16 April 1863-19 July 1947

Born: 16 April 1863, Dungannon, County Tyrone
Entered: 07 September 1880, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1895, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1898, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 19 July 1947, Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05/04/1931

by 1890 at Prague Residence, Czech Republic (ASR-HUN) studying
by 1891 at Paris France (FRA) studying
by 1897 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University online :
O'Neill, George (1863–1947)
by J. Eddy
J. Eddy, 'O'Neill, George (1863–1947)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/oneill-george-7909/text13757, published first in hardcopy 1988

biographer; Catholic priest; linguist; religious writer; theological college teacher

Died : 19 July 1947
George O'Neill (1863-1947), Jesuit priest, academic and author, was born on 16 April 1863 at Dungannon, Tyrone, Ireland, son of George F. O'Neill, inspector of schools, and his wife Mary Teresa, née McDermott. He was educated at the Catholic University School in Dublin and at St Stanislaus College, Tullamore, and entered the Jesuit novitiate in September 1880 at Milltown Park. In 1880-89 he taught at Belvedere and Clongowes Wood colleges, studied at Milltown Park and took his B.A. with first-class honours in classics from the Royal University of Ireland. He spent a postgraduate year in Prague in 1890, followed by a year in Paris. On his return to Ireland he took his M.A. with first-class honours in modern languages at the Royal University.

From 1891 O'Neill pursued philosophical and theological studies at Milltown Park and was ordained priest in 1895. In 1897, after completing his tertianship at Tronchiennes, Belgium, he was appointed to the staff of University College, St Stephen's Green, an independent Jesuit college which prepared its students for the examinations of the Royal University. Fr O'Neill was prefect of the library and church, choirmaster, and taught ancient and modern languages until 1901, when he became a fellow of the Royal University, while continuing to teach at St Stephen's Green as professor of English literature, in succession to Thomas Arnold. In 1909 when the Royal University was replaced by the National University of Ireland, O'Neill became a founding fellow and was nominated the first professor of English language and philosophy in 1910. He held this post until his departure at the age of 60 for Australia. One of his pupils was the young James Joyce.

O'Neill was sent to the Australian Jesuit Mission in 1923 at his own request, influenced by a period of ill health and a sense of dissatisfaction at the approach of retirement. Archbishop Mannix was keen to obtain distinguished staff for his new seminary, Corpus Christi College, Werribee, Victoria, and O'Neill became professor of modern languages (1923-45) and of church history (1932-45), and lectured and wrote in theology, history, literature and aesthetics. In 1945 when his eyesight and health were failing, he retired to Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney. He died on 19 July 1947 and was buried in Gore Hill cemetery.

A somewhat reticent and scholarly figure, O'Neill was nevertheless warm, frank, cultured and friendly, respected for his good critical judgement, his moral qualities of courage and sympathy for others, and his spiritual outlook. He was a precocious linguist, being thoroughly at home in Latin, Greek, Hebrew, French, German and Italian, a fine pianist and occasional composer, an omnivorous reader and, though not a great supporter of the Irish revival, was a correspondent of Canon Sheehan, Lady Gregory and Louise Guiney. Among his publications were studies of Shakespeare and of English poetry, a history of the Jesuit missions in Paraguay, scripture and poetry anthologies, a Newman reader, and a study of Job. He served as editorial consultant and wrote for a number of scholarly journals, including the Lyceum and the New Ireland Review, and contributed over thirty articles to the Jesuit publication Studies. His best writing is to be found in the Life of the Reverend Julian Edmund Tenison Woods (1929) and Life of Mother Mary of the Cross, 1842-1909 (1931).

Select Bibliography:
U. M. L. Bygott, With Pen and Tongue (Melb, 1980)
Irish Province News, 5, no 3, July 1947, p 238
Society of Jesus, Irish Jesuit Archives, Dublin and Australian Province Archives, Hawthorn, Melbourne, Australia.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
George O’Neill came to Australia in 1923, when he was over 60. It might have been thought that at this age, his value to the Society in Australia would not be very great, but the work he did in the 22 years he spent at Corpus Christi College was of greater value for the glory of God than anything he had done in his earlier life.
Before his arrival in Australia, O’Neill had been engaged in university work in Dublin for years, first with the Royal University of Ireland and then with the National University. This assignment began in 1897, when he was appointed to University College, where he prepared students for the Royal examinations, lecturing in modern and ancient languages. University College was a relic of the abortive attempt to establish a Catholic university in Newman's time. It was handed over to the Society by the Irish bishops, and became a kind of hostel for students preparing for the Royal Examinations. O’Neill was a fellow of the Royal University of Ireland. He set and corrected examinations and received a modest salary.
O’Neill went to school at St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, (later amalgamated with Clongowes), and gave evidence of the ability, so strikingly manifested later. He entered the noviceship at Milltown Park, Dublin, 7 September 1880. After this he was sent for a year to teach in Belvedere College, Dublin, and then returned to Milltown Park for a year's
philosophy. He was at the same time doing his university course by taking the examination of the Royal University of Ireland. He was given a year free of teaching at University
College, 1884-85, to prepare for his BA exams, and it was during this year that he lived with Gerard Manley Hopkins, who had been elected a Fellow of the Royal University at the
beginning of 1884 and was resident at University College.
After obtaining his degree, O'Neill did two more years teaching at Belvedere, where Albert Power was a pupil at the time, and a year at Clongowes. He was then given two years on the continent, one in Prague and one in Paris, preparing for his MA examinations in modern languages, which he took in 1891 with first class honours. Then he did a second year of philosophy (seven years after completing his first year) at Milltown Park, and went straight to theology in the same place.
He was ordained in 1895, at the age of 32, and did his tertianship at Tronchiennes. In 1897 he was appointed to University College and took up the work that was to occupy him until he left for Australia in 1923 at his own request, influenced by a period of ill health and a sense of dissatisfaction at the approach of retirement. In 1909, when the National University of Ireland replaced the Royal University O’Neill became a founding fellow and was nominated the first professor of English language and philosophy in 1910. One of his pupils was a young James Joyce. He later joined the community at Lower Lesson Street, not far from the university. He was a precocious linguist, being master of Latin, Greek, Hebrew, French, and German. He was an omnivorous reader, particluarly in English literature. He regularly contributed critical English articles in “Studies”.
When he reached Melbourne, it was a question whether he would go to Newman or to Werribee, and Werribee was chosen. He was to spend just over 22 years there, and his courses
exceeded all expectations. He professed modern languages, 1923-45, and church history, 1932-45. and lectured and wrote in theology, history, literature and aesthetics. He had never been a real teacher, being too academic for the average student, though the specially gifted could obtain much from him. But his simplicity of character, his edifying religious life, and general culture, had a great influence on generations of students, even if he did not teach them much.
Even in Ireland O'Neill was noted for care of the young and being kind to them. He loved having the students around him at Werribee, and regretted their departure for vacations
Though he had very considerable musical gifts, possessing a sense of absolute pitch and being competent player of the piano, he was not a real pianist, being rather hard and mechanical, and he had very poor handwriting.
O'Neill wrote a number of books and articles. in Ireland he had published a small volume “Lectures on Poetry”, and two books on the Shakespeare-Bacon question, “Could Bacon Have Written the Plays?” and “The Clouds around Shakespeare”. He continued his writing in Australia. Though always a good writer, he never succeeded in becoming a popular one. His book on the Jesuit Reductions in Paraguay, “Golden Years on the Paraguay”, deserved more popularity than it attained. The two books that made most impact on the Australian public were his life of Saint Mother Mary of the Cross (MacKillop) and his life of Julian Tenison Woods. The latter was written first. It was not popular with the Black Josephite Sisters, for in matters of controversy concerning their origins, he came down too heavily on one side.
He wrote a history of the Australian Mission, but it was never published. It was very good concerning the early years, but it was somewhat superficial in the treatment of the more
contemporary period. He could hardly be regarded as an unbiased historian, since he tended to be influenced unduly by his likes and dislikes. He never maintained a sufficiently detached outlook. He went to immense trouble in gathering material on the origins of the Josephite Sisters, particularly from surviving associates of Mother Mary and Father Woods, but his judgment on the facts could not always be firmly relied upon.
O'Neill put a great deal of work into his translation of Job, in which he received much help from Albert Power. It is greatly to his credit that he was always ready to help other writers. He had, for example, done a good deal of work on Caroline Chisholm, and helped Margaret Kiddie with her biography.
O'Neill was an extraordinary combination of genius, honesty and simplicity. He was child-like in many ways, always, for example, ready to experiment with strange combinations of dishes at meals. Though kind and even-tempered as a rule, he could become annoyed at times over what other people would regard as of no importance. Although a somewhat reticent and scholarly figure, he was nevertheless warm, frank, cultured and friendly, respected for his good critical judgment, his moral qualities of courage and sympathy for others, and for his spiritual outlook.
When his eyesight became so bad that he could no longer carry on his work at Werribee, he retired at the end of 1945 to Canisius College, Pymble, where he remained for the last year and a half of his life. As he could no longer read himself, the scholastics were very good to him by acting as readers, even if there was not always perfect agreement on both sides about the type of book to be read. He always enjoyed hearing his own creations. Towards the end he wanted to die. The Australian province should not easily forget the generous and notable service he gave in the autumn of his life.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934
Leeson St :
Monday, November 20th, was a red-letter day in the history of Leeson street, for it witnessed the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the House's foundation. In November, 1833. the Community came into being at 86 St Stephen's Green, where it remained until 1909, when the building was handed over to the newly constituted National University. The Community, however, survived intact and migrated to a nearby house in Lesson Street, where it renewed its youth in intimate relationship with the Dublin College of the University.
Its history falls this into two almost equal periods, different, indeed, in many ways, yet essentially one, since the energies of the Community during each period have been devoted to the same purpose, the furtherance of Catholic University Education in Ireland.
A precious link between the two eras is Father Tom Finlay, who was a member of the Community in 1883, and ever since has maintained his connection with it. His presence on Monday evening, restored to his old health after a severe illness was a source of particular pleasure to the whole gathering. It was also gratifying to see among the visitors Father Henry Browne, who had crossed from England at much personal inconvenience to take part in the celebration. Not only was Father Browne a valued member of the Community for over thirty years, but he acquired additional merit by putting on record, in collaboration with Father McKenna, in that bulky volume with the modest title " A Page of Irish History," the work achieved by the House during the first heroic age of its existence. It was a pleasure, too, to see hale and well among those present Father Joseph Darlington, guide, philosopher and friend to so many students during the two periods. Father George O'Neill, who for many years was a distinguished member of the Community, could not, alas. be expected to make the long journey from his newer field of fruitful labor in Werribee, Australia.
Father Superior, in an exceptionally happy speech, described the part played by the Community, especially in its earlier days of struggle, in the intellectual life of the country. The venerable Fathers who toiled so unselfishly in the old house in St. Stephens Green had exalted the prestige of the Society throughout Ireland. Father Finlay, in reply, recalled the names of the giants of those early days, Father Delany, Father Gerald Hopkins, Mr. Curtis and others. Father Darlington stressed the abiding influence of Newman, felt not merely in the schools of art and science, but in the famous Cecilia Street Medial School. Father Henry Browne spoke movingly of the faith, courage and vision displayed by the leaders of the Province in 1883, when they took on their shoulders such a heavy burden. It was a far cry from that day in 1883, when the Province had next to no resources, to our own day, when some sixty of our juniors are to be found, as a matter of course preparing for degrees in a National University. The progress of the Province during these fifty years excited feelings of
admiration and of profound gratitude , and much of that progress was perhaps due to the decision, valiantly taken in 1883 1883, which had raised the work of the Province to a higher plane.

Irish Province News 18th Year No 2 1943
Australian Vice-Province
From a letter of Fr. George O'Neill, Werribee, Melbourne. dated 29th November, 1942 :
This Vice-Province never before got such a painful shock as it has received in the absolutely sudden death of Fr. Thomas O'Dwyer (Rector of St Patrick's College Melbourne) On last Thursday I was chatting with him and he seemed alright. This morning (Saturday) he was laid in earth amid deep and widespread mourning, the grief of his Community at St. Patrick's being specially notable. He had been doing all his work up to the last. It would appear, however, that two or three months ago. he had consulted a. doctor and had been warned that he was not quite safe in the matter of blood pressure. On Wednesday night he was phoned to by the Mercy Nuns at Nicholson St where he acted as daily chaplain, asking him to say Mass early for them as the Coadjutor Archbishop was to say Mass there at 7.l5 or 7.30. He agreed. and made the early start next morning. The time came for his breakfast in the Convent parlour while the Archbishop was finishing Mass, but when the lay-sister came in after a time she found Fr. O'Dwyer lying on the ground and vomiting. He tried to reassure her, but she ran to the Rev. Mother and they phoned for a doctor who came at once. He saw that the situation was serious and that the last Sacraments should be given. Then the Cathedral (not far off) was called up and presently the Adm. came along with the Holy Oils. The Archbishop, who had meantime finished his Mass, came on the scene and anointed Fr. O'Dwyer, having previously given him absolution for which he was still conscious. The Provincial (from Haw