Showing 54 results

former Jesuit priest

Barber, Leslie, 1920-2012, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA ADMN/7/252
  • Person
  • 06 June 1920-04 June 2012

Born: 06 June 1920, Drumcondra, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 21 September 1939, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1953, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1956, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 04 June 2012, Melbourne, New South Wales, Australia

Left Society of Jesus: 01 April 1974

by 1969 at St Agnes San Francisco CA, USA (CAL) working
by 1970 at Hawthorn Melbourne, Australia (ASL)

Interfuse No 149 : Autumn 2012


Pat Nolan

Earlier this year, when I visited with Leslie in Melbourne, he asked me to speak at his funeral Mass. Alas, I could not be there, so a friend, John Little, who spoke the eulogy, included this personal testimony for me. I loved Leslie. Words defy a description of how much I shall miss him.

Leslie Barber had a long, sustained and positive influence on my life and on the life of my dear wife Carmel. Carmel and I would sometimes say, “Leslie saved our marriage!” To be precise, this is not meant to convey that our marriage was in deep trouble when we first met dear Leslie in 1971. What Leslie did was to show us, and many others, how to be a more mature married couple in the Ireland of the 1970s. I have since described Leslie's intervention as “introducing us to our feelings”.

Suppression of feelings was part and parcel of that Ireland of almost two generations ago. Leslie, as the Jesuit Retreat Director at Milltown Park in Dublin, ran week-end -retreat/seminars for young married couples which he titled "Hope-Ins" (the name influenced, no doubt, by his sojourn in California in the late 1960s). In these sessions he set out to legitimise our feelings for us, to get us in touch with our own stories in an honest, transparent fashion and then, when we felt the time was right and we were comfortable, to share the appropriate parts of our stories with others. He introduced us to the concept of the growth of trust in a group and how that would both facilitate our sharing while at the same time, and through this process, enable us to take ownership of our psychological history, our current state and, subsequently, our futures. For these reasons the primary sentiment I have towards Leslie is one of profound gratitude for such an everlasting gift. Thank you, Leslie!

Leslie Barber was a free spirit, which is why I loved him. He had a reverence for and an appreciation of the word in all of its purity and in the many manifestations of its utterance; poetry, cadence, metaphor and rhythm in relation to words were really important to him. He loved the sounds of words and never tired of repeating that love. He deeply mourned the apparent “passing of the King James Bible”. For Leslie, the word of God was primarily transmitted through sound and then through cadence and metaphor. In that sense, to present Leslie Barber as counter-cultural is an under-statement.

We have a saying in Ireland to describe someone as, “having a way with words”. Leslie Barber personified that saying. Words for him were like precious jewels and he did not wish to waste any of them; he was always careful and most deliberate in his choice of words. To describe Leslie as a free spirit is also to suggest that he was something of a “one-off”; and he was. He certainly did not fit any particular mould or type. Inevitably, this can have painful consequences and Leslie was no stranger to those. The Jesuit Order, as a significantly effective worldwide faith institution operating at a number of levels in promoting the Kingdom of God, may be noted for embracing many diverse opinions within its ranks. It accommodated Leslie Barber, and had the privilege of his presence, for thirty-three years. Some of those years were painful for him, notably those leading up to his departure. Given his 'free character traits and his way of using words; it was only a matter of time before Leslie clashed with authority, which he managed to do on more than one continent!

Leslie left the Jesuits in 1972, a year after we met (there is no known connection between these two events!). In the few years immediately after his exit from the Order I witnessed him at his best.

The manner in which he dealt with such a fundamental change in the Fection of his life was just outstandingly courageous. He performed the most menial and the humblest of tasks in order to make a living. In adversity Leslie showed his true mettle. Of course, dear Patricia became the anchor of his life at this time and they married in 1974. They were an extraordinary couple. I am privileged to have had them as close friends for many years, especially since they went to Australia 2003.

Patricia has been a loving and devoted wife to Leslie over all hose years, meeting his every need with such great tenderness and Commitment. Theirs is a wonderful love story which mirrored all of those excellent qualities of a married relationship which Leslie spoke about to us young married couples at Milltown Park in Dublin all those years ago.

There is a sense in which I don't want to, and cannot, say good bye to Leslie. There is something permanent about his influence on me; a depth to it that I struggle to identify with words. It is as if when I strip away all the foibles, the mannerisms, the human failings and the unusual characteristics, with Leslie I am left with this beautiful shining gem of integrity, of honesty, a transparent naivety, an attractive vulnerability, a certain stillness and silence at his core that was - maybe – the image, the likeness of God?
Requiescat in Pace

Interfuse No 149 : Autumn 2012


Colm Brophy

In 1966, as juniors, Leslie gave us a triduum. He began one talk on a drowsy afternoon - when we were more interested in eating food and playing football than what he might say – with an explosive quote from T.S. Eliot. He chopped it out with his inimitable diction: “After cake and tea and ices, let us force the moment to its crisis”. He followed this with a riveting story of lust, sensuality and frustrated feelings which made us sit up and take note like no one else had ever done.

Later, in 1972, Leslie led weekend retreats for teenagers in Tabor House with help from us theologians. He was ahead of his time. Before the term “emotional intelligence” was invented, before “mindfulness” was in vogue, before the senses' in Ignatian spirituality had blossomed, before the twentieth century had melted the heart into the head, he challenged “reason' as the only god of theology and the secular world. He threw the cultural revolution of the sixties onto our religious doorstep. His Tabor encounter groups were not in fact called retreats. He sharpened our spirits by not allowing us to fall into dead religious language. In preparing us (theologians) to facilitate our small encounter groups of five or six teenagers, he insisted again and again that the only question we were to ask in the group was, “what are you feeling RIGHT NOW?” Untrained and uncertain, we were quickly out of our depth with the powerful dynamic of such a question.

Leslie had the wonderful gift of awakening people from the dead. May he rest in peace and may he awake.

Barry, Patrick C, b 1915, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA ADMN/7/10
  • Person
  • 25 December 1915-

Born: 25 December 1915, Ballindangan, County Cork
Entered: 10 September 1934, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1948, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1952, Chiesa del Gesú, Rome Italy

Left Society of Jesus: 26 February 1961

by 1952 at Rome Italy (ROM) studying

Boyd Barrett, Edward J, 1883-1966, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA N5
  • Person
  • 29 October 1883-14 August 1966

Edward John Boyd-Barrett

Born: 29 October 1883, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1904, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1917, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1923, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 14 August 1966, Santa Clara Jesuit Informary, Santa Clara CA, USA

Left Society of Jesus: 16 June 1925

Edward John Boyd-Barrett

Educated at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1908 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1921 at St Ignatius College Tottenham London (ANG) studying
by 1925 at Georgetown University, Washington DC, USA (MARNEB)

◆ The Clongownian, 1967


Father Edward Boyd-Barrett (former SJ)

Even if we discount the nostalgia that remembered youth so often arouses, it is difficult for an old Clongownian of the last years before the First World War to look back on them and not find himself murmuring: “Ichabod, for the glory is departed”. And it is not really the last sunlit days of the centenary, the leaders of Church and State, the flags and speeches and feasting which remains primarily in the memory of a great time. It is the people, the masters and boys of that generation : “troops of grey ghosts in the corridors calling”, that make it a time to remember with pride and gratitude.

Even in such company Fr Edward Boyd Barrett was an outstanding personality. He had been a boy at Clongowes for five years, but he was to be a master there for only the comparatively short period of three years, 1911-14. They were indeed full years in his life. In the first place he was an outstanding teacher of boys : colourful, dramatic, methodical, straightforward, never subtle, never dull. He taught English and History to all the honours classes, and the least part of his achievement was the success of his pupils in the examination results. In fact he never referred to exams, nor slanted his treatment of a subject to ensure good answering. That in his last year his pupils, in each grade that he taught, got first place in both subjects, and on one occasion nine out of ten of the top places, is a remarkable and verifiable fact. And if the good teacher's work is not just to impart knowledge, but to rouse and foster talent, he did that in such a way as to win lifelong gratitude from scores of men, widely differing in character and ability.

But he was not just a teacher. His good looks, his skill at games, his eloquence, his gift for friendship made him a natural leader. The long walks of by-gone play-days were to places of interest : Connolly's Folly, the Hill of Lyons, the Taghadoe Round Tower. And as they walked, he kept a whole class spellbound with imaginary adventures of the European “underground”. Social reform was in the air, but the wind of change blew lightly and fitfully in Clongowes at that time. He organised the first Social Study Club, with an admirably mixed programme of theoretical and practical work for its members, a small but enthusiastic leaven in the school. Before joining the Jesuits he had worked as a layman in Vincent de Paul circles, and he now called on old friends to help him educate his boys. Under that guidance they visited such institutions as the Seaman's Institute, the Night Shelter, and the Dublin Union Hospitals; and they helped regularly with the first of all Dublin Boys Clubs, that run by Dr Lombard Murphy in William Street.

To this practical work was added elementary theoretical study. There was as yet in those days no Social Science course on the Religious Knowledge curricula; but the club formed a little library of its own, and discussions and papers were the principal term activities. During the centenary celebrations a special meeting was held at which, in the presence of the cardinal and half a dozen bishops, Fr Eddie Coyne, then the club's secretary, gave the first of what was to be a long series of talks. From these activities sprang the Clongowes Boys Club; and an essential liaison with Dr Murphy brought to Belvedere as his heir the Newsboys Club.

Under Fr Boyd Barrett's direction the debates were important events, to which distinguished visitors came, such as the brothers Larry and Tom Kettle. And, if Gaelic Ireland was as yet a closed book to him as to most of his pupils, there was no doubting that he was himself proud of Ire land's heroic past, and hopeful of its future to a degree not easily matched in this age of disillusionment. He never returned to his old school, but he never forgot the boys to whom he had given his best years, and given also understanding, appreciation and even admiration. Fifty years later, when he was a continent away, he corresponded with more than one of them, and he is remembered today by scores of them with gratitude and affection.

To his nephews, three of whom were at Clongowes, we offer our sincere condolences on his death.


History Ireland Vol 28 No 4

The Boyd Barretts and the new Irish state : Privilege and change in the Catholic middle class

by Colum Kenny

One was a controversial Jesuit psychologist who left the priesthood and married but later recanted. One was a surgeon who served in the British Army but then canvassed for Sinn Féin. And the third joined the new Electricity Supply Board, his son becoming architect of the first major government building designed in independent Ireland.

These Boyd Barrett brothers are a metaphor for the conflicted modernity that marked the Irish state’s inception. From a solid middle-class background, Joe, Edward and James Charles embraced change - up to a point. Their grandfather, James Barrett, had been a barrister and justice of the peace who died in 1880, bequeathing the family Terracina, a fine house in Kingstown. Their father died in 1884, in his thirties, leaving his widow to rear three children aged under four.

The boys were far from the poverty of inner-city Dublin, as Edward later recalled. He wrote that Terracina:-

… was a large redbrick house with chestnut trees and elders in front and a gravelled drive. There were outhouses at each side and a large garden in the rear. The rooms were lofty with fine marble mantelpieces, and furnished in old mahogany. There were portraits and busts and a library of classical books, gathered by my grandfather …

Ring-doves in cages hung in a porch. In the garden were fruit trees and glasshouses for flowers, and a lawn for tennis. A pet donkey grazed at large while a stable housed the family’s chestnut horse, in the care of a coachman. These were privileged Irish Catholics.

The Boyd Barretts had a private tutor who prepared them for their education at Clongowes Wood, the Jesuit boarding school in County Kildare. In 1898 its pupils elected Joe, a keen sportsman, as their captain. He went on to study at the Catholic University Medical School in Dublin (later part of UCD when the National University of Ireland was created in 1908). He was a founder, and in 1903 captain, of its soccer club. A 1930 history of UCD reveals that Bohemians wanted four of the team’s best players, including Joe: ‘It is pretty certain that if Barrett had accepted our [college] Club would have gone to pieces’. His fellow students elected him to edit news from the medical school for the university’s St Stephen’s Magazine, which in late 1901 had rejected an article by the student James Joyce because it included mention of a volume on the Vatican’s Index of Prohibited Books.

Joe’s views on society hardened as he began to work as a doctor with children, becoming a surgeon in Temple Street Children’s Hospital. In 1911 he presented a paper to a public health congress in Dublin on the results of his investigations into the medical inspection of schoolchildren. In 1912 he said that ‘Ireland was the only country in which there was no state provision for the feeding of necessitous children, though no place required it more’. In 1913 he delivered a lecture outlining the desperate poverty of children in Dublin and calling for more children’s hospital beds and other measures to relieve it. He said that the State had failed the child. Speaking in 1915, he said that, ‘in addition to the medical work in the hospital, it was absolutely necessary to do something for the clothing of poor children’.

Joe served in France with the British Royal Army Medical Corps, but in 1914 he also ‘took a prominent part’ in the gunrunning at Howth by the Irish Volunteers. The fighting in Dublin in 1916 had a big impact on Temple Street hospital, and the British reaction to the rebellion further radicalised Boyd Barrett, as it did many other Irish people. Joe now associated publicly with the Sinn Féin movement and many leading figures of that period met at his home. Becoming a close personal friend of Arthur Griffith, he was acquainted with Michael Collins too.

In 1917 Joe wrote for Griffith’s weekly Nationality paper what the editor of the Nenagh Guardian described as ‘a remarkable article on Irish manufactures’. He also actively canvassed for Sinn Féin, speaking, for example, in 1917 on a platform with Arthur Griffith and Seán Milroy at Manorhamilton, Co. Leitrim, and a week later with John O’Mahony at what was advertised as a ‘monster meeting’ at Goresbridge, Co. Kilkenny, and in 1918 at Cootehill, Co. Cavan. During 1918 Arthur Griffith’s son, ‘under the care of Surg[eon] Boyd Barrett’, had a successful operation at the Children’s Hospital. On 29 July 1921 Dáil Éireann appointed Boyd Barrett one of its department of local government inspectors, and he fulfilled those duties eagerly for years.

Joe was an amateur artist. The British Medical Journal reported that he executed ‘some admirable works in oils, after paintings by Sir Thomas Lawrence and Giuseppe Ribera’. It is said that he completed a portrait of Arthur Griffith and another of Kevin O’Higgins. There is a sketch of Griffith in the National Library signed simply ‘JB’. Dated 4 July 1922, it is said to be ‘the last drawing’ made of Griffith before his death. It was published without attribution on 16 February 1923 in the new United Irishman.

During these difficult years Joe’s brother Edward (also known as ‘Jack’) got into trouble with his Jesuit superiors for his views. They postponed his final vows because he criticised the Irish hierarchy for cowardice in the face of Britain imperialism. He later claimed that the War of Independence might have been avoided had the bishops been more supportive of Sinn Féin, which he saw as ‘essentially a pacifist movement relying on moral force’. He is also said to have expressed opposition to the Anglo-Irish Treaty.

His Jesuit superiors were already concerned about his views on psychology and his attitude to discipline, and began to censor his work on psychotherapy and psychoanalysis. His book Strength of will, published in the USA in 1915, had been based partly on his dissertation, completed in Belgium. The poet Joyce Kilmer reviewed it favourably for the New York Times.

There was a possibility in 1924 that Edward would be appointed to a senior position at University College Galway, and the editor of Studies took up the matter with their Jesuit provincial on his behalf, but Edward’s superiors instead sent him to teach sociology (not psychology) at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. Once he was there, the prestigious Jesuit publication America began to publish articles by him on psychology. It stopped as a result of pressure from the Jesuit authorities in Ireland. An invitation from Fordham University to deliver lectures also met with opposition. Today, Edward’s unorthodox and challenging opinions are again receiving scholarly attention.

Recalled to Ireland, Edward instead left the Jesuits. He was to describe graphically his personal crisis then. Estranged from his church, he set himself up in New York as a psychoanalyst and married Anna O’Beirne, with whom he had a son. He wrote books, some critical of the church, and in one hinted at child abuse by Irish priests. He also completed a romantic novel about Shane O’Neill, returning to Ireland for two years in 1932 to conduct research for this.

Edward eventually reconciled with the Jesuits. He attributed this to the prayers of his recently deceased brother, James Charles. The latter had tried his hand at stockbroking but later found work in the pioneering ESB. James Charles’s son Rupert became a well-known Cork architect, who in 1935 won the competition for the design of the building on Kildare Street in Dublin that is home to the Department of Industry and Commerce.

The story of the Boyd Barrett brothers is a story of transition, illustrating how one middle-class Catholic family negotiated the social and cultural changes that saw the emerging Irish state struggle to stand on its own two feet.

Colum Kenny is Professor Emeritus of Communications at Dublin City University.


E. Boyd Barrett, The Jesuit enigma (New York, 1927).
E. Boyd Barrett, The magnificent illusion (New York, 1930).
Paula M. Kane, ‘Confessional and couch: E. Boyd Barrett, priest-psychoanalyst’, in K. Roberts SJ & S. Schloesser SJ (eds), Crossings and dwellings (Leiden, 2017).

Buckley, Francis X, 1939-2019, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 18 April 1939-27 March 2019

Born: 18 April 1939, Dublin City, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1956, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 25 June 1970, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 25 March 1976, Gonzaga College SJ, Dublin
Died: 27 March 2019, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin (Killiney, County Dublin)

Left Society of Jesus: 23 April 1986

by 1963 at Saint-Albert, Louvain, Belgium (BEL M) studying
by 1972 at Rice High School NY, USA (NEB) studying

Clery, Joseph, 1837-, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA ADMN/7/239
  • Person
  • 11 February 1837-

Born: 11 February 1837, County Cork
Entered: 13 September 1856, Beaumont, Berkshire, England - Angliae Province for HIB (ANG)
Ordained: 1868
Final Vows: 02 Fenruary 1872

Left Society of Jesus: 1883

by 1858 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) Studying Philosophy
by 1866 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) studying Theology
by 1871 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
Early Irish Mission to to Australia 1880

1857 FRA CAT has St Acheul, Amiens entry

Coghlan, Peter, 1936-2023, former Jesuit priest

  • 10 November 1936-26 December 2023

Born: 10 November 1936, Crumlin, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1955, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 10 July 1969, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1977, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died : 26 December 2023, London England

Left Society of Jesus: 1988

by 1963 at Loyola Spain (LOY) studying
by 1975 at Medellín, Colombia (COL) making Tertianship

Cox, Thomas D, 1925-, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA ADMN/7/39
  • Person
  • 16 March 1925-

Born: 16 March 1925, Dublin City, County Dublin
Entered: 01 February 1943, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1958, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1963, St Joseph, Seattle WA, USA

Left Society of Jesus: 25 February 1966

by 1962 at St Joseph’s Seattle WA, USA (ORE) working

Cummins, Patrick, 1920-1979, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA ADMN/3/45
  • Person
  • 17 March 1920-04 January 1979

Born: 17 March 1920, Rathgar, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1937, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1949, Fourvière, Lyon, France
Died 04 January 1979

Left Society of Jesus: 1976 - Zambiae Province (ZAM) (to Lusaka Diocese)

Transcribed: HIB to ZAM 03 December 1969

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1948 Lyon France (LUGD) studying
by 1952 at Chikuni, Chisekesi, N Rhodesia (POL Mi) working
by 1969 at Camoldolese Hermits, Bloomingdale, OH USA

◆ The Clongownian, 1979


Father Patrick Cummins (former SJ)

The recent death of Father Patrick Cummins has saddened his many friends. Though dogged by ill-health his gaiety and sense of humour never left him. On the other hand, he seemed to personify the familiar words of Saint Augustihe "Our hearts are restless until they rest in Thee", for Paddy always seemed to be striving for something beyond. It was this yearning for closer union with God in prayer and solitude that impelled him to join the Camaldolese in Ohio; but he remained with them for only a year, and returned to the Jesuit Order once more.

Paddy left Clongowes in 1936, and took his first vows after two years in the Jesuit Noviceship in Emo, It was in Rathfarnham, after a year at UCD that he first began to suffer ill-health, which necessitated his transfer to Tullabeg for Philosophical Studies. Perhaps the happiest period of his life was the three years he spent in the Crescent College, Limerick, as a Scholastic. He was very popular with the boys, and they still recall with pleasure outings and picnics with him on the banks of the Shannon. He was ordained in Fouvière, France, in 1950, and completed his final year of Theology there. He also spent his year of Tertianship in France.

Born on March 17th 1920, Fr Paddy shared the same missionary zeal as his great patron. He left for Zambia in 1951, and threw himself with generous zeal into missionary work. Such was his flair for languages that he was sent for a year to the language school to specialise in the Zambian dialects. He then worked for a number of years in Choma, a remote missionary station in Southern Rhodesia. His search for solitude and silence finally impelled him to seek satisfaction with the Camaldolese Monks in Ohio. However, what he sought he did not find there, and so returned to Ireland. His ill-health having grown progressively worse, he spent a year as a chaplain on Lambay Island, His health having recovered somewhat, he returned to Zambia and his missionary work.

After some time there he left the Jesuit Order, but continued to live the Jesuit mode of life in Jesuit houses. His health gradually deteriorated, and he died after a short illness on January 4th 1979. We pray that his generous restless heart has at last found that rest in peace that he sought after all his life.


Deane, Declan, 1942-2010, former Jesuit priest, and priest of the Oakland Diocese, CA, USA

  • Person
  • 14 May 1942-12 December, 2010

Born: 14 May 1942, Bunnacurry, Achill, County Mayo
Entered: 07 September 1959, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 23 June 1972, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 25 April 1985, Iona, Portadown, County Down
Died: 12 December, 2010, Christ the King Church in Pleasant Hill, CA, USA (Oakland Diocese)

Left Society of Jesus: 1999

Educated at Mungret College SJ

by 1965 at Chantilly France (GAL S) studying
by 1974 at Cambridge MA, USA (NEB) working
by 1975 at Berkeley CA, USA (CAL) studying
by 1981 at Oakland CA, USA (CAL) making Tertianship
by 1993 at San Ramon CA, USA (CAL) working
by 1996 at Fremont CA, USA (CAL) working
by 1996 at Moraga CA, USA (CAL) working

Teacher of ecumenics and pastoral worker in North

FR DECLAN Deane, who has died aged 68, was best known in Ireland for his work as a teacher at the Irish Schol of Ecumenics

FR DECLAN DEANE:FR DECLAN Deane, who has died aged 68, was best known in Ireland for his work as a teacher at the Irish School of Ecumenics and his pastoral work with the Jesuit community in Portadown, near the Garvaghy Road.

Director of the school’s Northern Ireland programme, he believed that as far as a church followed the example of Jesus, it was a distinctly Christian church. It was Christian when it refused to acquiesce in the boundaries imposed by a politically segregated society but took a lead in breaking through them.

In 1983, he urged Catholic clergy and people to take the lead in crossing the boundaries as they had greater freedom to do so.

A strong critic of paramilitary violence and its apologists, he nevertheless signed a letter of protest against strip-searching in Northern Ireland’s prisons. Likewise, he was, in 1988, a signatory to a letter deploring the British government’s decision to conceal the findings of a report into the killings of six unarmed men in 1982.

His talents were multiple and often unexpected – a national champion at Scrabble, a passionate observer of horse racing and a prodigious memory for cards – so much so that he was banned from some tables in Las Vagas.

Declan Deane was born in Dublin in 1942 but grew up on Achill Island and was educated at Mungret College, Limerick. He began his two-year novitiate in 1959. He then went to UCD after which he studied philosophy at Chantilly near Paris and theology at Milltown Park, Dubin, where he was ordained in 1972.

After ordination he became one of the first students at the recently-established School of Ecumenics, and graduated in 1973 with the Hull University postgraduate degree of B.Phil. He pursued doctoral studies in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Berkeley, California.

During this time he developed a special interest in the ecumenical theology of the French Jesuit theologian, Henri de Lubac (later to be made a cardinal), with particular reference to his understanding of Buddhism.

In 1980 he was appointed lecturer in continuing education at the School of Ecumenics and for most of the 1980s taught in the school’s certificate course of the then New University of Ulster.

He lived as a member of the Jesuit community in the Garvaghy estate in Portadown. Very popular as a teacher and as a priest, he enjoyed the friendship of Catholics and Protestants, nationalists and unionists.

In 1989 he moved to Dublin where he did youth retreat work.However, in search of more theological freedom than he felt in Ireland (he was always a strong advocate of women priests), he moved to California in 1992. Later he formally left the Jesuits to become a diocesan priest in the diocese of Oakland, California.

He enjoyed pastoral work and was popular with all his parishioners. He is remembered for his dry sense of humour, thought-provoking homilies and easy-going manner. He was most recently attached to Christ the King Church, Pleasant Hill, California.

In Memory of Fr Declan Deane

Fr Declan Deane, a former lecturer and student at the Irish School of Ecumenics, passed away this week of cancer. Fr Deane was serving at Christ the King Church in Pleasant Hill, California.

A native of Dublin, he grew up on Achill Island and was ordained a Jesuit in 1972. He was one of the first students to enrol on the Irish School of Ecumenics’ programme in Dublin. During the 1980s he lived as a Jesuit in Portadown and taught on the Irish School of Ecumenics’ Adult Education course in Northern Ireland.

Fr Deane immigrated to the US in 1992 and worked in five parishes before his death. A memorial on the Christ the King webpage describes him this way:

Despite his struggle with esophageal cancer, despite his being first on chemo and then a seven month hospice patient, Declan steadily did more and more rather than less and less. He continued to take his turn at weekly confessions; he returned to weekday masses especially with our school children, including the classroom preparation that went with that. Just a few short days before his death, he preached at all six weekend masses, concelebrated three and was outside greeting and visiting with parishioners for all the masses. To that he added the Monday morning mass and two days with visits to school and classrooms. To those who advised him to slow down and do less, his response was , “that is the way I want to be remembered” and “when I promise I’m going to do something and be somewhere, I always do it”.

I never met Fr Deane. But I can appreciate the energy and dedication that he must have exhibited in helping to get the ISE’s Northern Irish work off the ground. He is remembered fondly by many colleagues and former students. December 21, 2010

Parting from Declan

Declan Deane, who died in California on 12 December, had been an Irish Jesuit for over thirty years, before joining the diocese of Oakland. He is remembered with deep affection and regard by many friends, especially in N.Ireland, where he worked with the Irish School of Ecumenics. His talents were multiple, often unexpected: a national champion at Scrabble, a passionate observer of horses, a prodigious memory for cards at the gaming tables of Las Vegas, such that the bankers had him banned. But above all he was a priest, who during his struggle with esophageal cancer took on more and more ministry. A few days before his death he preached at all six weekend Masses, concelebrated three, heard confessions and greeted the parishioners at the door. His funeral was a huge and emotional occasion, as Donal Godfrey SJ reports:

Last Thursday I represented the Society at the Mass of Christian burial for Declan Deane. The Church of Christ the King in Pleasant Hill, where Declan had most recently served, was packed with two bishops, priests, and so many friends from the parishes where Declan had served. The homilist, Fr. Gerrry Moran in the Oakland Diocese and like Declan from Achill island, spoke of the life of Declan in very moving terms. We heard how at first Declan had objected to working with Gerry as pastor but eventually they became close friends. The homily was interrupted with applause on a number of occasions. The Bishop Emeritus, John Cummins, spoke of the wonderful Jesuit formation Declan had received, quoted Pedro Arrupe in connecting Declan’s strong social conscience and his gift of bringing contemporary theology alive to a wider audience. Declan’s brother John came from Ireland and told us how he had sent a card to Declan with a Christmas poem written especially for him that he discovered unopened in his room. John ended his words with the poem. Afterwards the parish held a wonderful reception and then we went to the Holy Angels Cemetery where Declan had told the pastor that he was very happy to be buried next to Frank Houdek, SJ, the man who had “saved him” when he went into recovery as an alchololic. On another note -we have been having wave after wave of rain storms, however for Declan’s funeral it was a sunny mild day. Declan must have arranged that for us as he always loved the sun! Ar dheis De go rabh a ainm dhilis. Published by Inside Bay Area on Dec. 15, 2010.

Declan Deane Obituary

Father Declan A. Deane May 14, 1942 ~ Dec. 12, 2010 Pleasant Hill, CA Declan was born in Dublin, Ireland and grew up on Achill Island on the west coast of Ireland. He was ordained as a priest into the Jesuit Order in Dublin in 1972. In his early years of priesthood he devoted his time to issues of faith and justice, including working for peace with Protestants and Catholics during the troubles in Northern Ireland. He also ministered to those in prisons and to those with AIDS. Called to parish ministry, he immigrated to the US and settled in the Diocese of Oakland. His first assignment began in 1992. He served as Associate Pastor in five parishes; St. Joan of Arc, Holy Spirit, St. Monica, All Saints, and most recently Christ the King. He quickly endeared himself to his parishioners and became a much loved, admired and respected priest in every community. People enjoyed his dry sense of humor, the thought-pro-voking depth of his homilies and his easygoing approachable manner. Being a good friend and inclusive to all was important to Declan. When not engaged in ministry Declan made sure to enjoy life. He was a scrabble champ in Ireland, Northern Ireland and England, an avid sports fan and very fond of the horses. He took one day at a time. He is survived by his sister Patricia; brothers John (Ursula) and Raymond (Renate); and nieces and cousins. There will be a parish Mass on Wednesday, December 15 at 11:00am followed by viewing and visitation from 12:00 noon to 7:30pm; Vigil Service at 7:30pm. The Funeral Mass will be at 10:30am on Thursday, December 16, with interment at Queen of Heaven Cemetery at 1:30pm. All services will be at Christ the King Catholic Church, 199 Brandon Road, Pleasant Hill. CA.

Interfuse No 144 : Spring 2011


Declan Deane (1942-2010) : former Jesuit

Declan Deane, who has died in California, had been an Irish Jesuit for over thirty years before joining the diocese of Oakland. He is remembered with deep affection and regard by many friends. One measure of this affection; during his final sickness he received 28,000 emails and other messages of support from those who had known and loved him. His talents were multiple, often unexpected: a national champion at Scrabble, a passionate observer of horses, a prodigious memory for cards at the gaming tables of Las Vegas, such that the bankers had him banned. But above all he was a priest, who during his struggle with oesophageal cancer took on more and more ministry. A few days before his death he preached at all six weekend Masses, concelebrated three, heard confessions and greeted the parishioners at the door.

Born in Achill and schooled in Mungret College, where he was elected Head of School in his final year, Declan Deane entered the Jesuits in 1959. He earned a BA in UCD studied philosophy at Chantilly near Paris, and theology at Milltown Park, Dublin where he was ordained priest in 1972. After ordination he did a B.Phil. at the Irish School of Ecumenics (ISE) and doctoral studies in Cambridge, USA, and in Berkeley, California. In these years he developed a special interest in the ecumenical theology of the French Jesuit theologian, Henri de Lubac with particular reference to his understanding of Buddhism. Sadly he never finished his doctoral dissertation, largely because of the disease of alcoholism with which he eventually came to terms.

In Ireland at least Declan was probably best known for his teaching work in the Irish School of Ecumenics (ISE) and his pastoral work in the Jesuit community in Portadown, near the controversial Garvaghy Road. He lived there for most of the 80's, longer than anywhere else, and greatly endeared himself to his students and to the local people, Protestant and Catholic, Nationalist and Unionist. The troubles were then far from over. Despite the troubles, perhaps because of them, he became popular as a teacher and as a priest.

Hoping however for more theological freedom than he felt he enjoyed in Ireland (he was always a strong advocate of women priests) he moved in 1992 to California for parish work. Later in the decade he formally left the Jesuits to join the diocese of Oakland, California. Happily however he always remained in the best of relations with his former Jesuit colleagues and with his lay friends, some of whom flew over to say goodbye to him before he died. We now deeply mourn his early, but sadly not unexpected, death from cancer on 12 December 2010.

His funeral was a huge and emotional occasion, as Donal Godfrey reports: “Last Thursday I represented the Society at the Mass of Christian burial for Declan Deane. The Church of Christ the King in Pleasant Hill, where Declan had most recently served, was packed with two bishops, priests, and so many friends from the parishes where Declan had served. The homilist, Fr. Gerry Moran in the Oakland Diocese and like Declan from Achill island, spoke of the life of Declan in very moving terms. We heard how at first Declan had objected to working with Gerry as pastor but eventually they became close friends. The homily was interrupted with applause on a number of occasions. The Bishop Emeritus, John Cummins, spoke of the wonderful Jesuit formation Declan had received, and quoted Pedro Arrupe in connecting Declan's strong social conscience and his gift of bringing contemporary theology alive to a wider audience. Declan's brother John came from Ireland and told us how he had sent a card to Declan with a Christmas poem written especially for him that he discovered unopened in his room. John ended his words with the poem. Afterwards the parish held a wonderful reception and then we went to the Holy Angels Cemetery where Declan had told the pastor that he was very happy to be buried next to Frank Houdek, SJ, the man who had ‘saved him’ when he went into recovery as an alchololic. On another note - we have been having wave after wave of rain storms, however for Declan's funeral it was a sunny mild day. Declan must have arranged that for us as he always loved the sun! Ár dheis De go rabh a ainm dhilis”.

Robin Boyd of the ISE wrote about Declan:
Declan Deane was a remarkable man, and a dear colleague and friend. He and I shared a birthday – he was exactly twenty years younger than me - and on one memorable occasion we were able to celebrate it together, at an ecumenical clergy conference at Corrymeeala when we shared - and even cut together - a specially made birthday cake.

He took up his duties in charge of the ISE's Northern Ireland programme in 1981, and it was mainly in the North that we saw each other. It was always a delight to visit that small Jesuit community at Iona, a council house in Portadown, with its memories of Paddy Doyle, Brian Lennon, and a host of unexpected visiting trail-blazers from all the Irish Church traditions. For Declan had friends everywhere. I remember one occasion when he came with me to the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church. And as we milled around in the clergy-crowded corridor there were delighted and unexpected meetings with Declan's friends among the thronging ministers and elders: I remember especially his happy reunion with Ruth Patterson (the first woman to be ordained as a minister of Word and sacrament in the Irish Presbyterian Church), and Bert Tosh (now senior producer of religious programmes in the BBC, Northern Ireland). Warm, modest to the point of shyness, amusing, and devastatingly honest, he firmly established the ISE's Northern programme in its three main bases of Belfast, Derry and Benburb, making friends wherever he went.

We had many adventures together. One dark night, driving North through Omagh and Strabane, Declan said, “There's a convent I know near here. Let's call on the sisters”. Despite my protest that it was too late, we arrived at the convent and rang the bell. We rang again, and there was no reply. I said, “You see what I mean!” and we drove on. Next day, at our conference, we met one of the sisters, and apologized for ringing their door bell so late. “Och, we were all watching the football” was the answer; Declan knew them better than I did.

On one occasion we did a fund-raising tour in Germany together, staying with German friends of mine in Remscheid, where he quickly made himself at home. The “Tour de France” happened to be going on, and we discovered that Declan was a devotee of the “maillot jaune”. He was also, as befitted a member of a distinguished literary family, a devotee of letters - and numbers. This devotion took a peculiar form: he was fascinated by German car numbers, and quickly worked out their literary and numerical basis, so that before long he could identify the place of origin of every car in the land. “Why?" I asked. “Well, I look forward to the day when I'm at home in Achill, and I see a German car with the family sitting having a picnic, and I'll go up to them and say, “How is everybody in Remscheid today?” We enjoyed that game, and I still do. But I knew better than ever to challenge Declan to a game of Scrabble. His skill there was legendary. In the interests of the ISE we travelled from bishop to bishop, from praese to praeses, from Seminary to Theologische Hochschule, and had a happy reunion in Frankfurt with Fr Gerry O'Hanlon SJ, who was then working on his thesis on Karl Barth. I don't recollect how successful that journey was financially: but it certainly was a trip to remember with great pleasure.

Memorable too were the one or two occasions when my wife Frances and I stayed with Declan in the Jesuit flat normally occupied by Fr Henry Grant in the Newtownbreda area of Belfast. It was full of Henry's tapes of classical music, which delighted Frances. And it was also full of good talk. Declan shared with us his problems: the alcoholism which he had so steadfastly battled and overcome; theology - for he was no stranger to the doubt which is the only real basis of faith; celibacy, women's ministry, relations between the churches. Those were evenings to recall with joy. For Declan was a man who brought warmth and joy to those he met. It was a privilege to have him as a friend, and now to know that he has entered into the joy of his Lord.

Dinneen, Patrick Stephen, 1860-1934, fomer Jesuit priest and Irish language lexicographer

  • IE IJA ADMN/7/52
  • Person
  • 26 December 18-29 April 1934

Born: 26 December 1862, Rathmore, County Kerry
Entered: 06 September 1880, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1894
Died: 29 April 1934, Dublin City, County Dublin

Left Society of Jesus: 1900

Educated at Crescent College SJ

by 1898 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship


Dinneen, Patrick Stephen
by Eoin Mac Cárthaigh

Dinneen, Patrick Stephen (Ó Duinnín, Pádraig Stiabhna) (1860–1934), Irish language lexicographer, was born 25 December 1860 on a smallholding in Carn townland near Rathmore in the Sliabh Luachra district of Co. Kerry, fifth of ten children of Maitiú Ó Duinnín, farmer and livestock trader, and Máire Ní Dhonnchadha (d. 1917). His parents, who had been evicted from a more substantial farm a few years previously, were native Irish-speakers. Although Pádraig was brought up largely through English, Irish was still very much in evidence during his childhood, and he first heard many of the poems of local poet Aogán Ó Rathaille (qv) from his mother. He received his earliest formal education in the local national school and later (at the age of 10) in the national school at Na Míteoga, from his uncle. His ability was obvious from an early age and he became a monitor in that school in 1874. He left aged 17 and stayed at home for three years, taking Latin lessons from the parish priest of Rathmore, presumably with a view to entering the priesthood. His mother's excessive piety must have been a factor in his choice of calling. Under the influence of Denis Murphy (qv), SJ, he joined the Jesuits in September 1880. He was ordained in 1894, but his training lasted until summer 1898. He completed his years in formation (1880–82) and as a scholastic (1891–5) at Milltown Park, Dublin, and his tertianship in Tronchiennes, Belgium (1897–8). In 1883–5 he studied mathematics and modern literature in UCD – under Gerard Manley Hopkins (qv) and Seán Ó Cathasaigh among others – graduating with an honours BA. His forte was mathematics, in which he received an MA (1889). All other years of his training were spent teaching – three of them as an assistant in mathematics in UCD (1885–8), and the rest in Jesuit novitiates and schools. After completing his training, he taught in Clongowes Wood, Co. Kildare, for two years. Although much folklore surrounds his (regular and fairly amicable) parting of ways with the Jesuits (1900), it would seem that he left because his superiors thought him unsuitable for life in the society – toisc é a bheith beagainín corr ann féin (‘because he was a little bit eccentric’), as one Jesuit put it. He wore clerical garb until his death, and was allowed to continue presenting himself as a priest, but not to administer the sacraments without first being licensed to do so by a bishop. He was later offered such permission by the archbishop of Dublin, but failed to take it up because this would involve showing private documentation to prove that he could support himself independently – and he was always intensely private about his personal affairs. This did not, however, stop him from accepting offerings to hear mass for people's intentions. There is little evidence that he showed any interest in Irish before 1899, when he began teaching it in Clongowes and also made a submission in support of the language to a government commission on education. His conversion may have come about under the influence of his friend and fellow Jesuit, the Irish scholar Fr John MacErlean (qv). He soon plunged headlong into Irish scholarship and quickly established himself as a leading authority on Irish literature. By 1906, he had produced fairly reliable editions of the poetry of many of the most important Munster poets: Aogán Ó Rathaille, Eoghan Rua Ó Súilleabháin (qv), Seán Clárach Mac Domhnaill (qv), Séafraidh Ó Donnchadha an Ghleanna (qv), Tadhg Gaelach Ó Súilleabháin (qv), Piaras Feiritéar (qv), and the Maigue poets. He also edited Faoistin Naomh-Phádraig, the eighteenth-century prose text Me Guidhir Fhearmanach, and three of the four volumes of the highly valuable Foras feasa ar Éirinn by Seathrún Céitinn (qv). He published these through Conradh na Gaeilge's publications' committee and through the London-based Irish Texts Society (ITS). The latter also printed his pioneering Irish–English dictionary, which was widely welcomed when it came out in 1904. Although he later claimed that most of this dictionary was compiled from material ‘stored up in my childhood's memory’, in fact it drew heavily on published literature, on unpublished lexicons, and on manuscript sources, as well as on word lists submitted from the various Gaeltacht areas. When the plates for this publication were destroyed during the 1916 rising, he embarked with the assistance of Liam S. Gógan (qv) on a second, much expanded edition, which appeared in 1927 and was the standard Irish–English dictionary until 1977 (when it was largely replaced by Niall Ó Dónaill's (qv) Foclóir Gaeilge-Béarla). The 1927 edition and its predecessor made a significant contribution to the standardisation of Irish orthography. It has been widely consulted since 1977 – particularly by readers of material published before the advent of today's official standard Irish and by those wishing to access its considerable body of proverbs and idiomatic expressions. This is the dictionary that ‘Myles na Gopaleen’ (Flann O'Brien (qv)), poked fun at for years in his ‘Cruiskeen Lawn’ column in the Irish Times, christening Ó Duinnín ‘our great comic lexicographer’.

In contrast to his lexicographical work, Ó Duinnín's literary attempts (including a novel, some plays, and several poems) are less than memorable. However, his novel Cormac Ó Conaill (1901) is of no small historical importance: it was the first novel of the literary renaissance. As well as being a member of the Society for the Preservation of the Irish Language, and of the ITS, Ó Duinnín was an active member (1900–09) of Conradh na Gaeilge: he sat on many of its most influential committees, including its Coiste Gnó – where, according to Piaras Béaslaí (qv), he was usually in a ‘magnificent minority of one’. His main platform within the Conradh was the Munster-leaning and pro-catholic Craobh an Chéitinnigh, of which he was made president (1904). This branch operated as an independent republic within the Conradh, and was more often than not at loggerheads with the leadership. From there, he played an active part in the virtual civil war that bedevilled the language movement in the early years of the twentieth century. He came under the influence of his friend D. P. Moran (qv), and wrote a column in the latter's Leader (1906–29), using this and the letter columns of other newspapers to assail the Conradh's leaders, particularly Douglas Hyde (qv) and P. H. Pearse (qv). He thought the latter pretentious, and often referred to him with mock seriousness as ‘Pee Haitch’ and ‘BABL’. In 1906, in a celebrated letter purporting to be from a person by the name of Snag Breac (‘Magpie’) to the Irish People newspaper, he criticised a novel that Pearse had recently published under the pseudonym ‘Colm Ó Conaire’ (supposedly a western writer), saying it ‘smacks more like the margarine of the slums than pure mountain butter’. He also poked fun at the innocent Pearse's choice of title, Poll an phíobaire (‘The piper's hole’), expressing the hope that ‘the Píobaire will continue to draw from the stores of his capacious and well-filled arsenal’! From 1909 until his death Ó Duinnín devoted himself exclusively to his studies. Although he was awarded (1920) an honorary D.Litt. in absentia by the NUI, he never had much contact with the academic establishment. For many years, he was a permanent fixture in the National Library (where he receives mention in Joyce's (qv) Ulysses) and in the RIA library, where he spent the winters. He was a well known and well liked character around Dublin in the early decades of the century. He cut a rather colourful figure in his tall hat and shabby coat (which he once borrowed from a friend but neglected to return), and was remembered by many not because of his great dictionary but because of his mild eccentricity: his habit of talking to himself and chewing dulse in the library, his awful puns (‘O'Neill-Lane? Ó, níl aon mhaith ann’), or his legendary miserliness (which once led him to enter a children's writing competition and pocket the prize). He died Saturday 29 September 1934 and, after funeral Mass in the Jesuits' Gardiner St. church, was buried in Glasnevin cemetery.

An Seabhac [P. Ó Siochfhradha], obituary, Capuchin Annual 1935, 118–20; P. Ó Conluain and D. Ó Céileachair, An Duinníneach: An tAthair Pádraig Ó Duinnín, a shaol, a shaothar agus an ré inar mhair sé (1958); M. Bruck, ‘Fear an fhoclóra’ [review of An Duinníneach], Ríocht na Midhe, ii, no. 1 (1959), 72–3; C. Ó H., [review of An Duinníneach], IER, 5th ser., xc, no. 1 (Jan. 1961), 69–70; C. Ó Háinle, Promhadh pinn (1978); Beathaisnéis: 1882–1982, iii (1992), 96–8; iv (1994), 183

Patrick Stephen Dinneen (Irish: Pádraig Ua Duinnín; 25 December 1860 – 29 September 1934) was an Irish lexicographer and historian, and a leading figure in the Gaelic revival.

Dinneen was born near Rathmore, County Kerry.[1] He was educated at Shrone and Meentogues National Schools and at St. Brendan's College in Killarney.[2] He earned second class honours bachelor's and master's degrees from the Royal University of Ireland. The BA (1885) was in classics and mathematical science, the MA (1889) was in mathematical science. He joined the Society of Jesus in 1880 and was ordained a priest in 1894, but left the order in 1900 to devote his life to the study of the Irish language[3] while still remaining a priest. After his ordination, he taught Irish, English, classics, and mathematics in three different Jesuit colleges, including Clongowes Wood College, a Jesuit boarding school near Clane, County Kildare.

P. S. Dinneen's dictionary Foclóir Gaedhilge agus Béarla, 1904
He was a leading figure in the Irish Texts Society, publishing editions of Geoffrey Keating's Foras Feasa ar Éirinn, poems by Aogán Ó Rathaille, Piaras Feiritéar, Tadhg Gaelach Ó Súilleabháin, and other poets. He also wrote a novel and a play in Irish, and translated such works as Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol into Irish. His best known work, however, is his Irish–English dictionary, Foclóir Gaedhilge agus Béarla, which was first published in 1904.[4] The stock and plates of the dictionary were destroyed during the Easter Rising of 1916, so Dinneen took the opportunity to expand the dictionary. A much larger second edition, compiled with the assistance of Liam S. Gógan, was published in 1927.[5] Dinneen's request to the Irish Texts Society to include Gogan's name on the title page was refused.[6] Gogan continued to work on the collection of words up to his death in 1979. This complementary dictionary was published online in 2011.[7]

Fr. Dinneen died in Dublin at the age of 73 and is buried in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin.[8]

Fraser, Charles, 1789-1835, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 26 February 1789-12 March 1835

Born: 26 February 1789, Scotland
Entered: 07 September 1810, Hodder, Stonyhurst, England - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 1820
Died: 12 March 1835, Aberdeen, Scotland

Left Society of Jesus: 1830

J 707 - change to ADMN/7/307

in Clongowes 1817;
in Friburg Switzerland 1826

Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Father Murphy says that at the age of 10, he entered the Scotch College at Ratisbonne, at 16 he went to Stonyhurst. His inscription is “Carolus Fraser, Miss : Ap : in Planis Scotiae ob : Aberd. xii Mar 1835, aet xlvii”. (cf FD Murphy’s “Collections”

He belonged to HIB and was very much esteemed by all his brethren in Ireland.
He was a Professor and Prefect at Clongowes and a most distinguished Preacher, as well as the author of a History of the Suppression, which is in the Milltown Park Archives.

Although he left the Society, he kept up a correspondence with the Irish Jesuits.
Loose leaf note in CatChrn : Entitled “Left Stonyhurst for Castle Brown” :

Gannon, Donal R, 1930-2006, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA ADMN/7/85
  • Person
  • 07 January 1930-02 November 2006

Born: 07 January 1930, Portlaoise, County Laois
Entered: 07 September 1948, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1962, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 02 November 2006, Palmyra, ME, USA

Left Society of Jesus: 07 September 1966

Younger Brother of Paddy Gannon - LEFT 1949

by 1965 at Loyola Chicago IL, USA (CHG) studying


PALMYRA – Donal R. Gannon, 76, died Nov. 3, 2006, in Ireland, after a brief illness. He was born Jan. 7, 1930, in Portlaoise, Ireland. He was educated in Ireland and came to the United States to complete a master’s degree in industrial relations. He married his wife, Peggy, in Chicago, and they relocated to Maine in 1974. As a supervisor in Maine’s Department of Child Support Enforcement, Donal devised a set of guidelines for non-custodial parents that was subsequently adopted virtually nationwide. The family moved to Palmyra in 1977, where, after retiring from the state, Donal and his spouse opened a greenhouse and nursery business, The Shepherd’s Garden, which they ran jointly for 12 years and where he was able to pursue his love of gardening. Donal returned to Ireland in the spring of 2001. He is survived by his ex-wife, Peggy of Palmyra; a daughter, Kirstin Larson of Palatine, Ill.; a daughter, Nancy of Brooklyn, N.Y.; a son, Kevin of Tempe, Ariz.; a son, Brendan of Cambridge, Mass.; three grandsons, Robert and Nathan Krause of Chicago and Benjamin Larson of Palatine, Ill.; five brothers, Anthony and James of Ireland, Ignatius of Wheathampsted, England, Francis of Philadelphia and John of Hong Kong; three sisters, Claire Gill and Gertrude Dunne, both of Ireland and Gabrielle Nahaboo of London; many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by two brothers, William and Patrick, both of Ireland; and a sister who died in childhood. Services and burial took place Nov. 6, in Portlaoise, Ireland.

Palmyra, Maine, USA

Gannon, John B, 1922-, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA ADMN/7/250
  • Person
  • 15 July 1922-

Born: 15 July 1922, Portlaoise, County Laois
Entered: 07 September 1939, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1953, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1956, Loyola, Tai Lam Chung, Hong Kong

Left Society of Jesus: 1970

Transcribed: HIB to HK - 03 December 1966

by 1948 at Yim Yuan, Paak Chue Lo, Tungshan, Canton, China (Hong Kong) - Regency, learning language
by 1964 at Fordham NY, USA (NEB) studying

Gill, Frederick, 1868-, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 1868-

Born: 11 August 1868, Dublin City, County Dublin
Entered: 08 October 1890, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 01 August 1897, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

Left Society of Jesus: 19 February 1928

Older brother of Henry Gill - RIP 1945

by 1895 at Enghien Belgium (CAMP) studying

Guerrini, Roderick M, 1931-2018, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 27 September 1931-14 March 2018

Born: 27 September 1931, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1949, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1963, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: Canisius College, Chikuni, Zambia
Died: 14 March 2018, Nazareth House, Manning Ave, Los Angeles, CA, USA

Left Society of Jesus: 1980

Transcribed: HIB to ZAM - 03 December 1966

Son of Stephen Guerrini and Ellen McInerney. Studied at UCD

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1958 at Chivuna, Monze, N Rhodesia - studying language Regency
by 1967 at Holy Name Manchester (ANG) working
by 1975 in Oxnard CA, USA (CAL) working

Guiry, Eric, 1935-2020, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 04 April 1935-15 April 2020

Born: 04 April 1935, Carrick-on-Suir, County Tipperary
Entered: 07 September 1953, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1967, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 05 November 1972, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 15 April 2020, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin (Monkstown, County Dublin)

Left Society of Jesus: 30 May 1975

Educated at Mungret College SJ

Jones, John F, 1929-2013, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 29 March 1929-20 February 2013

Born: 29 March 1929, Drumcondra, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1948, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1962, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1965, St Aloysius, Washington DC, USA
Died: 20 February 2013, Littleton, CO, USA

Left Society of Jesus: 1970

Transcribed: HIB to HK - 03 December 1966

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1957 at Cheung Chau, Hong Kong - Regency studying language
by 1965 at SFX Church, Washington DC, USA (MAR) studying
by 1966 at U Michigan, Ann Arbor MI, USA (DET) teaching
by 1966 at U of Minnesota WI, USA (WIS) studying

John Finbarr Jones

John Finbarr "Jack" Jones (29 March 1929 – 20 February 2013) was a researcher and scholar of social development,[1] Dean of the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Denver from 1987 to 1996.[2] He served on the Advisory Board of the United Nations Centre for Regional Development. As director of the social work program at the Chinese University of Hong Kong between 1976 and 1987, he helped recreate the social work field in China. He wrote or edited more than a dozen books on social development, focusing on human security, international conflict resolution, and transitional economies.

Early life and education
Jones was born in Dublin, Ireland, the fourth of five children born to John Jones, a customs and excise agent, and Kathleen O'Brien Jones. He attended boarding school at Clongowes Wood College in County Kildare, until 1948. He then completed his bachelor's degree at National University of Ireland, Dublin (now known as University College Dublin). He joined the Jesuit order after earning his bachelor's degree, and served as a missionary to Hong Kong. He left the priesthood in 1969. After leaving the priesthood, he earned a master's degree in social work at the University of Michigan, and a Master's in public administration, and a PhD in social work at the University of Minnesota. His doctoral dissertation was adapted into his 1976 book Citizens in Service: Volunteers in Social Welfare During the Depression, 1929 – 1941, which he co-wrote with John M. Herrick.[3]

He married Lois McCleskey Jones, in Washington D.C. in 1974. They had two children.

Professional life, research and scholarship
Shortly after Jones completed his doctoral work, the University of Minnesota recruited him to found its School of Social Development, where he was Dean from 1971 to 1976.

Jones then returned to Hong Kong, where he was director of the department of social work at the Chinese University of Hong Kong until 1987. While in Hong Kong, Jones was vice-chairman of the Hong Kong Council of Social Service, and a member of the Hong Kong Advisory Committee on Social Work Training. In 1980, he edited Building China: Studies in Integrated Development, which documented the earliest stages of development in the People's Republic of China following the upheaval of the Cultural Revolution.[4]

Jones was influential in promoting the concept of Social development theory in the field of social work.[5] In 1981, he co-edited Social Development which helped define this approach.[6]

In 1987, he was appointed dean of the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Denver. Under his leadership the school founded the Bridge Project,[7] which supports education initiatives in Denver's public housing developments.[8] He also helped form a partnership between DU and the All China Youth Federation and the China Youth University for Political Sciences in Beijing, one of the first such collaborations between American and Chinese universities.[9]

After retiring as dean in 1996, he continued to work as a research professor affiliated with the University of Denver's Conflict Resolution Institute and the Graduate School of Social Work. His contributions to the fields of human security and social development included: The Cost of Reform: The Social Aspect of Transitional Economies which he co-edited with Asfaw Kumssa.[10] Jones was named dean emeritus of the University of Denver Graduate School of Social Work in 2004.

Throughout his academic career, Jones served on several international boards and committees, including the Advisory Committee of the United Nations Centre for Regional Development (UNCRD), and the International Council of Social Welfare. Jones was president of the American Humane Association and served on the Colorado Governor's Business Commission on Child Care Financing.[11]

Jones co-ordinated various private and publicly funded research projects, including:

Research on local social development, transitional economies, and social reforms in Asia and Africa, sponsored by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) and United Nations Center for Regional Development (UNCRD).
Research on social development in China and Hong Kong, funded through the U.N. Social Welfare and Development Center for Asia and the Pacific.
Research on the chronic mentally ill, funded through the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).
Research on child protective services, funded by the United States Children's Bureau (HHS).
Program evaluation of rural violence prevention, and community impact studies, funded by the Blandin Foundation.
Gap analysis study of training, funded by the Ford Family Foundation.
Immigrants' online database creation and evaluation, funded by First Data / Western Union Foundation.
He also served on several editorial boards, including: Social Development Issues, Regional Development Dialogue, Regional Development Studies, Journal of Social Development in Africa, and Hong Kong Journal of Social Work.

Kelly, John T, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 15 April 1906-

Born: 15 April 1906, Newbridge, County Kildare / Dublin City, County Dublin
Entered: 31 August 1923, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 24 June 1937, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1940, Mungret College SJ, Limerick

Left Society of Jesus: 25 September 1956 : Incardinated into Sault Ste Marie Diocese, Canada 1956

by 1929 at Berchmanskolleg, Pullach, Germany (GER S) studying
1931 Regency at Belvedere
by 1939 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

Kennedy, James, 1841-1918, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 15 January 1841-1918

Born: 15 January 1841, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 04 August 1863, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1873
Final Vows: 22 April 1878
Died: 1918

Left Society of Jesus: 1898; remained a priest

by 1870 at Roehampton, England (ANG)) studying
by 1871 at home for health
by 1872 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1874 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) studying
by 1875 at St Wilfred’s Preston (ANG) working
by 1877 at Castres France (TOLO) making Tertianship
Early Australian Missioner 1877 (St Ignatius College, Roverciew, Sydney, NSW, Australia.

Klein, Martial Leopold, 1849-1934, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 03 April 1849-1934

Born: 03 April 1849, Alsace, Germany
Entered: 30 May 1878, Manresa, Roehampton, England - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 1883
Died: 1934

Left Society of Jesus: 1887

Came to UCD (HIB) to lecture in Science and Biology 1885-1887

Mac Lochlainn, Val, 1930-2007, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 11 June 1930-2007

Born: 11 June 1930, Fairview, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1948, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1962, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1965, Sacred Heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 2007, Edgworthstown, County Longford

Left Society of Jesus: 1995

by 1974 at Rome, Italy (DIR) sabbatical
by 1993 at Glasgow, Scotland (BRI) working

Interfuse No 139 : Easter 2009


Fr Val Mac Lochlainn (1930-2007) : former Jesuit

Paul Andrews (Interfuse Obituarist) writes:
Because Val died as a married man, in Edgeworthstown in August 2007, we never had an obituary of him in Interfuse. That was an oversight, because he was an Irish Jesuit for 47 years, and remained a close friend after he left the Society in 1995. What follows is a memoir put together with the help of Tom McGivern in Zambia,

Val's education took him from “Joey's” CBS in Fairview through Emo, UCD (BA in Latin and Irish), philosophy in Tullabeg, theology in Milltown and tertianship in Rathfarnham. He then taught for two years in the Crescent, and three in Galway, where he had done his Regency. There followed four years in Gardiner Street church, a sabbatical in Rome, and then the work for which he is probably best remembered, nine years as National Promoter for the Christian Life Communities. There were 310 CLC groups in Ireland, and Val worked assiduously to encourage them all. When he left the job in 1983 he wrote in his CV of “mental exhaustion resulting from over zealous commitment to study while at secondary school”.

At the age of 53 he volunteered for Zambia, and he worked there for seven years, mostly in Charles Lwanga Teacher Training College. He suffered greatly from the fact that his mother had fallen into dementia, and in 1981 had to be put into a home; she died in 1988.

For Val the 1990s were years of uncertainty. He returned to Ireland in 1990, and while working as a priest - mostly in Scotland - he went through a period of painful discernment, with strong help from his Irish Jesuit director. In 1995 he decided to leave the Society and the priesthood. Through the remaining twelve years of his life, in England and Ireland, he stayed in close contact with Jesuit friends, especially Michael O. Gallagher who now holds Val's old post in CLC. Val married an old friend in 2000, and contributed energetically to the parish of Edgeworthstown where they lived.

Val was a good man, a zealous priest, a brilliant footballer who might well have made the Dublin team, a cherished husband, and, above all, a searcher. May he rest in peace, having reached his goal.

Mahony, Francis Sylvester, 1804-1866, former Jesuit priest, priest and humorist

  • IE IJA N/2
  • Person
  • 31 December 1804-18 May 1866

Born: 31 December 1804, Cork City, County Cork
Entered: 02 October 1827, Aix en Provence, France - Franciae Province (FRA)
Died: 18 May 1866, Paris, France

Left Society of Jesus: 1830

Journalist in “Fraser’s” pseudonym Fr Prout


Mahony, Francis Sylvester (‘Father Prout’)

Contributed by
Geoghegan, Patrick M.

Mahony, Francis Sylvester (‘Father Prout’) (1804–66), priest and humorist, was born 31 December 1804 in Cork, the second son of seven sons and four daughters of Martin Mahony, a woollen manufacturer, and his second wife, Mary Mahony (née Reynolds). Educated at Clongowes Wood College, Co. Kildare, he seemed destined for a career in the priesthood and was sent to St Acheul, Amiens (1819), and then to a Jesuit seminary in Paris. From there he went to Rome to study philosophy (1823–5), before returning to Clongowes to teach. A brilliant student and scholar, he was described as being the same in his youth as he was at his death: ‘caustic, irascible, opinionated, argumentative, [but] with a sharp sense of irony and satire’ (Mannin, 137).

Within two months of his return to Clongowes he was appointed master of rhetoric, but his rapid rise was halted abruptly after an ill-fated class outing to nearby Celbridge, in the course of which both students and master drank heavily and Mahony made a loud attack on the character of Daniel O'Connell (qv). There was uproar when the inebriated class returned past curfew, and Mahony was soon transferred to the Jesuit college of Fribourg, Switzerland. He went from there to Florence, where he was expelled by the Jesuits. Though he was ordained a secular priest in 1832, it seems he had persistent doubts about his vocation, which were shared by his superiors. He returned to Ireland in 1832 to assist in the Cork mission that was treating the cholera epidemic. The conflicts in his character resurfaced, however, and in 1834 he left suddenly after a serious disagreement with the local bishop. He moved to London, where he became a journalist and writer; for the rest of his life he was independent of church authority.

In 1834 Mahony began writing for Fraser's Magazine, and, like the other distinguished contributors, adopted a pseudonym – ‘Father Prout’; he also published as ‘Don Jeremy Savonarola’. Mahony had known a real Father Prout – Daniel Prout (qv), the parish priest of Watergrasshill, in his childhood – but in all other respects the character was the creation of his imagination. He invented biographical details and even a biographer; The reliques of Father Prout was published in 1837. His writing at this time was sharp and acerbic, and often brilliant: Thomas Moore (qv) was accused of plagiarism, O'Connell was regularly abused, and Prout won a wide readership. After a while Mahony's inspiration faded, and he moved to the staff of Charles Dickens's Bentley's Magazine. Conviviality was never Mahony's problem, but it seems alcoholism was, and in the engravings of the literary dinners, Thackeray, Coleridge and Carlyle are each shown with a glass of wine, whereas he is shown with three.

Deciding to travel on the Continent in 1837, from then on he lived abroad. He was Rome correspondent for the Daily News (1846–58), and Paris correspondent for the Globe from 1858 until his death. His health failed in the early 1860s and he became lonely and irritable. He burned his papers in his final days, and died 18 May 1866 at Paris. His body was brought back to Cork and he was buried in the vault of Shandon church. After his death he was remembered chiefly for ‘The bells of Shandon’, a nostalgic poem about Cork that may have been written when he was at Clongowes. It was the least of his works, but it achieved an enduring fame and became a popular song. Mahony was an erratic character, and his writing, sometimes spectacular, sometimes mediocre, reflected this.

Allibone; Webb; Cork Hist. Arch. Soc. Jn. (1892), 76–7; DNB; O'Donoghue; Ethel Mannin, Two studies in integrity: Gerald Griffin and the Rev. Francis Mahony (1954); D.Cath.B.; Robert Hogan (ed.), The Macmillan dictionary of Irish literature (1979) (under Prout); DIH; Welch; Boylan; Fergus Dunne, ‘A critical reappraisal of the texts and contexts of Francis Sylvester Mahony’ (Ph.D. thesis, University of Sussex, Brighton, 2003)

Mansfield, Michael, 1910-1985, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 23 January 1910-24 April 1982

Born: 23 January 1910, Sandymount, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 02 September 1929, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 13 May 1942, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 23 March 1945,
Died: 24 April 1982, New Jersey, NJ, USA

Left Society of Jesus: 1957/8

Transcribed: HIB to ASL 05 April 1931

by 1950 at Ricci Hall Hong Kong (HIB) working

Martin, Malachi B, 1921-1999, former Jesuit priest, writer

  • Person
  • 23 July 1921-27 July 1999

Born: 23 July 1921, Ballylongford, County Kerry
Entered: 07 September 1939, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1954, Leuven, Belgium
Final Vows: 02 February 1957, Leuven, Belgium
Died: 27 July 1999, New York, NY, USA

Left Society of Jesus: 15 May 1965

Pseudonym: Michael Serafian

Martin, Malachi Brendan

Contributed by
Maume, Patrick

Martin, Malachi Brendan (1921–99), priest and writer, was born 23 July 1921 at Ballylongford, Co. Kerry, the fourth of ten children of Conor John Martin, gynaecologist, and his wife Katherine (née Fitzmaurice). Three of his four brothers became priests, including F. X. Martin (qv) OSA, historian, and Conor Martin (1920–80), professor of politics and ethics at UCD. Martin was educated at Ballylongford national school and Belvedere College. In 1939 he joined the Jesuit order as a scholastic (novice). He studied at UCD, took doctorates in Semitic and Oriental languages and archaeology at the University of Louvain, and was ordained on 15 August 1954. He travelled in the Middle East and published a book on the scribal character of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Between 1958 and 1964 Martin worked at the Jesuit-run Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome. During the first two sessions of the second Vatican council (1962–4) he associated with theologically liberal bishops and commentators, acting as a source for the New York Times and for Robert Kaiser, Rome correspondent of Time. In 1964 Martin published The pilgrim under the pen-name ‘Michael Serafian’; in it he described intrigues surrounding the council's decree Nostra aetate, which formally denied that the Jews were collectively guilty of deicide, and later claimed credit for the decree's ratification. Kaiser claimed that The pilgrim was largely fantasy.

In 1964 Martin left Rome and was subsequently released from his vows as a Jesuit; he claimed that he retained priestly faculties, reporting only to the pope. According to his own account he had resigned from his order after realising that new developments were undermining the catholic faith, whereas Kaiser states that he fled after the exposure of his affair with Kaiser's wife Mary. (Martin had responded to Kaiser's initial suspicions by persuading friends that the journalist needed psychiatric treatment.) In 1965 Martin moved to New York. Kaiser claimed that Martin's family in Dublin were subsequently approached by four women (one of them Mary Kaiser) and a man, each of whom believed that Martin had left the priesthood for them. On his arrival in New York Martin allegedly worked as a taxi driver and restaurant dishwasher while building a new career as a writer on church-related subjects. He wrote for the conservative weekly National Review and occasionally published articles in the New York Times. He eventually took up residence in a Manhattan apartment with Kakia Livanios, the former wife of a Greek shipping tycoon; Martin claimed their relationship was innocent.

In his writings Martin aligned himself with discontented traditionalist catholics, making conflicting statements on the validity of the revised liturgy. Hostage to the devil (1976) offered a typology of exorcism through five anonymous case studies: the subjects of these studies were said to have been possessed through sexual perversion (described in prurient detail) but were freed by exorcisms in which the priests involved suffered severe injuries. Appearing soon after the book and film The Exorcist, Martin's Hostage popularised exorcism among American protestants as well as catholics. Martin appeared frequently on television talk shows as an expert on exorcism, displaying considerable charm. In 1996 he claimed to have participated in eleven exorcisms, and a traditionalist friend claimed that Martin performed monthly exorcisms until his death. He also claimed a supernatural gift of discerning demonic possession, and saw Satan in his apartment. Martin's admirers thought him an instrument of the archangel Michael, risking life and health in a personal battle with Satan, but his claims were questioned even by theologically conservative catholic demonologists.

Martin wrote numerous best-selling novels and works of non-fiction describing alleged politico-religious intrigues within the Vatican; he claimed that his information (including detailed descriptions of secret meetings and references to the pope's private thoughts) came from old friends in Rome. His books reflected the fears and anguish of people who believed that they were witnessing the desecration of what they held sacred in the face of silence or even connivance on the part of church authorities. Martin portrayed a world shaped by direct conflict between Jesus and Satan, in which well-meaning liberals, who diluted catholicism in the interests of universalist humanitarianism, allowed agents of Satan to pervade church and state. His books insinuate that the author knows more and worse than he can say. Martin told admirers that his novels were ‘80% true’, but did not specify the provenance of the remaining 20 per cent.

Martin's treatment of individual popes combines lavish praise with vicious innuendo. At times he attributed the corruption of the Vatican to the failure of John XXIII in 1960 to reveal the ‘third secret of Fatima’ (the third part of the revelation allegedly made by the Virgin Mary to three children in 1917); Martin claimed to have seen the prophecy under a vow of secrecy – he frequently hinted at the imminence of the apocalypse. Elsewhere he accused Pius XII of passive collaboration with the Nazis. His novel The final conclave (1978), inspired by Vatican banking scandals, accuses popes since Pius IX of making compromises with masonic bankers. At times he suggested that the church had been corrupt since the age of Constantine. From 1990 he claimed that the Vatican had been clandestinely consecrated to Satan by paedophilic episcopal Satanists, and that Antichrist was alive (possibly in the person of Mikhail Gorbachev.) In his last novel, Windswept house (1997), John Paul II is simultaneously an inspiring figure of radiant holiness and a cowardly temporiser whose pusillanimous abandonment of the faithful constitutes mortal sin. Martin hints that traditionalist splinter groups are secretly favoured by a pontiff too feeble to outmanoeuvre the Roman bureaucracy, and that they will soon constitute the true church facing a Satanist on the throne of St Peter.

Martin's portrayal of papal corruption and demonic conspiracies found many non-catholic readers. Protestant exorcists pursuing ‘Roman Catholic demons’ acknowledged his inspiration; Ian Paisley (qv) quoted him; conspiracy theorists and paranormalists adapted his claims. On the late-night radio show hosted by Art Bell, Martin suggested that African witch doctors might do God's work and counselled listeners claiming to be werewolves.

In later life Malachi Martin suffered several heart attacks. He died 27 July 1999 at New York of intracranial bleeding after a fall. Admirers saw later church scandals as his vindication; one alleged seer purveyed messages from ‘St Malachi Martin’. Even after the appearance of Kaiser's memoir, Martin retained many devotees. The secret of his influence was that he exploited his readers’ experiences and fears, reinforcing his influence by his alleged insider status; the demons he described came from within.

Two characters in Windswept house are based on Martin's version of his life story – a young American priest gradually discovering the corruptions of the Vatican bureaucracy, and an older Irish religious superior and exorcist, who is marginalised by his modernist confreres and ends as an ‘independent’ priest clandestinely authorised by the pope. Versions of the Martin–Kaiser affair are reportedly to be found in the novels Naked I leave by Michael Novak and Connolly's life by Ralph McInerney.

St Michael's Sword (Oct. 1997–Aug. 1998); obituary, Ir. Times, 7 Aug. 1999; Robert Blair Kaiser, UI (New York, 2002); review of Robert Blair Kaiser, Clerical error (2002), The Observer, 17 Mar. 2002; Michael W. Cuneo, American exorcism: expelling demons in the land of plenty (2001); (accessed 12 Feb. 2003);; http://www.ianpaisley;;;; (foregoing websites accessed 10 Mar. 2003)

Interfuse No 104 : Spring/Summer 2000


Michael Hurley

Many members of the Province will remember Malachi Martin who died on 27 July '99 as a fellow Jesuit, whose imagination could frequently run riot, who was always a rather enigmatic character. Others who did not know him may well have heard of him as an Irish ex-Jesuit or former Jesuit (to use today's more “ecumenical” language) who wrote of the Society in quite outrageous terms. This note has a two-fold aim: to recall some details of Malachi's life and to tell the Province something about the Mass celebrated for him at Belvedere on Saturday 2 October last.

Malachi was at school in Belvedere, as were his three brothers, FX, the Augustinian who died recently, and Conor and Bill who both pre-deceased him, the former a lecturer in politics in UCD, the latter Archbishop's secretary for many years. Malachi joined the Society in 1939 and after noviceship in Emo under Fr Neary spent four years in Rathfarnham (1941-1945), graduating from UCD with a degree in Oriental Languages. After philosophy in Tullabeg (1945-1948), he spent three years teaching in the Crescent and then went to Eegenhoven-Louvain where he was ordained a priest by Bishop, later Cardinal, Suenens on 15 August 1954. After tertianship in Rathfarnham he did doctorate studies at the University of Louvain and in 1958 the results of his work were published by the University in two volumes under the title of The Scribal Character of the Dead Sea Scrolls. This was the first of some fifteen books published by him.

After his doctorate studies Malachi went to teach at the Biblical Institute in Rome and during the first two sessions of the council [1962-1963] was universally regarded in Rome as a strong supporter of the so-called liberal wing of the council - so said the well-known American priest and intellectual, Mgr George Higgins, who knew him at the time ,writing in America 21 March 1987 (0.231). In particular Malachi supported Cardinal Bea in his various ecumenical initiatives, especially in his efforts to get a positive statement about the Jews from Vatican II. A strange, mysterious change however then took place and in June of 1964 Malachi disappeared from Rome, arrived in Dublin in July and on the 23rd of that month was granted an indult of exclaustration which forbade any exercise of the priestly ministry qualified exclaustration'). For the rest of that year he lived with one of his sisters in Dublin but said mass at the Benedictine hostel which then existed in Palmerston Park. As he still belonged to the Society, the 1965 Catalogus had him assigned to Manresa but degens extra domum, living outside the house. Early that year however, he left for New York where eventually he had his own apartment and was frequently visited by one of his sisters. Later that same year, on 15 May 1965, a Decree of the Sacred Congregation of Religious, in response to a request from himself, reduced him to the lay state' but the enigmatic Malachi had a private chapel in his New York apartment, said mass and built up an apostolate as a priest.

From 1965 on Malachi became notorious as a staunch traditionalist opposed to all that Vatican II said and did, and in particular to the post-Vatican II Society of Jesus. In 1987 he published The Jesuits: The Society of Jesus and the Betrayal of the Roman Catholic Church. America, the Jesuit periodical, invited Mgr George Higgins, the former acquaintance, if not friend, quoted above, to review the book, and in the course of a review article printed in the 21 March number he did not hesitate to write:

I regret to say that The Jesuits does precisely that (distorting the work of the church and its representatives) and does so with a degree of vengeance that has very few parallels, if any, I should think, in even the most irresponsible of the scores of anti-Jesuit books written during the past four centuries by avowed enemies of the Society... Martin's book is anything but fair and objective criticism. His 525-page attack on the Jesuits is downright savage in both style and substance and almost compulsively judgmental. It reeks of unfairness, bordering at times on hatred directed at distinguished members and leaders of the Society. (p.229)

In Mgr Higgins's view the real target is not the Society of Jesus, but the postconciliar church across the board with the Jesuits serving conveniently as a surrogate part for the whole'.(p.230) Malachi's ferocious antipathy to Vatican II and its aftermath only increased his fervour for pre-Vatican II ways. A close friend, an ex-Dominican, a Fr Charles Fiore, writing an obituary of Malachi in The Wanderer for 12 August 1999, praised him as a man of strong piety', singled out “his fervent love and devotion to the Blessed Eucharist and Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and to Our Lady of Fatima and her rosary, adding that :

Over his New York years he [Malachi] heard many Confessions, witnessed marriages, buried the dead, gave converts instructions, and by phone, letters, and occasional meetings, counseled [sic] hundreds.

A few weeks before his death the enigmatic Malachi told one of his sisters that I have always been a Jesuit in my heart'. His obsequies were conducted by a priest associated with the Society of St Pius X (followers of Archbishop Levebre) with full pre-Vatican II ceremonial.

On Saturday 2 October a requiem mass for Malachi was celebrated in the community chapel at Belvedere in the presence of his four surviving sisters and two of their husbands. In welcoming the visitors at the beginning, the Headmaster, Fr Leonard Moloney, one of the concelebrants, paid tribute to the Martin family, all the boys of which (Liam, Conor, Frank and Malachi) had been distinguished pupils of the school. A contemporary of Malachi and a fellow Kerryman , Fr Bill McKenna, who was also concelebrating, then spoke recalling among other things Malachi's mastery of languages, his irrepressibility, his fluency in speech, his vivid imagination, the affection in which his fellow scholastics held him. Being another contemporary and Malachi's companion during the four years of theology at Eegenhoven-Louvain, it fell to me to preside at the Mass and in my introduction I said:

Today is the ancient, traditional feast of the Guardian Angels, a feast which reminds us in a particular way of the mystery of God's providence in our world and in our daily lives and in Malachi's life in particular; so it seemed appropriate to take the prayers and readings of the day, adding a special prayer for Malachi. This I went on) is a gathering of the Martin family and of the Jesuit family, Malachi belonged to both our families: he was a Jesuit for a quarter of a century, from 1939 to 1964. We gather to say Mass: to give thanks for the gifts which both families have received from God, in particular to give thanks for Malachi who was an intellectual giant, in particular a linguistic genius but perhaps above all a charmer. We gather however not only for thanksgiving but for mutual forgiveness: to ask for and to offer forgiveness. Tensions and rifts can arise within families and between families. That happened in Malachi's case. As a result he felt he had to part company with the Jesuits. When there's a row it's rarely if ever that the faults are all on one side, anyway today is not a time for assigning blame. Malachi and the Jesuits hurt and offended each other and we are here to say sorry and to ask forgiveness from God and from each other and from Malachi for the ways in which we failed and hurt each other.

The readings for the feast-day were Exodus 23:20-23, Psalm 91 and Matthew 18:1-5 and in the course of my homily I said:

The first reading and the psalm remind us of the mystery of God's providence: God is a father and mother to us all,

watching over us, protecting us out of love for us. However in these days of ethnic cleansing and earthquakes and typhoons when the problem of evil is only too starkly obvious and it's not at all clear that God has the whole world in his hands, this saying about God's provident love ‘is hard and who can hear it, who can stomach it?' - that you may remember was the remark made by the disciples when according to the 6th chapter of the Fourth Gospel, Jesus spoke about the mystery of the eucharist... In particular the providential character of Malachi's own life, his departure from the Jesuits and his subsequent career is hard to accept: It is nothing less than a mystery and all we can say is: 'we believe, Lord, help our unbelief". The last verses of John's gospel may be relevant. Peter had made his apologies and been reconciled to Jesus for his triple denial and been invited to "Follow Me'. Peter saw John and said: 'Lord what about this man?' Jesus told him more or less to mind his own business and 'follow me'. Our vocation is to follow Jesus and not to be too preoccupied by the mystery of Malachi's life or anybody else's.

The gospel reading for today reminds us that to enter the Kingdom of heaven, or as Matthew puts it, the Kingdom of God, we must be childlike and the passage we heard sets us wondering again about what this childlikeness consists in. Childlikeness is certainly not childishness. Perhaps it is the way children are totally dependent on their parents. The gospel command to be childlike is perhaps a caution against being self-centred and self reliant, a reminder that, even though we can do all things in him who strengthens us, without him we can do nothing, that we must put all our trust in God not in ourselves. There is a definite Jesuit temptation to put your trust in yourself but the temptation affects everyone else too. Let us pray for each other that we overcome this temptation and come to rely not on ourselves alone but on God and each other and so be childlike and ready for the Kingdom.

In the Prayers of the Faithful, remembering that it was the Jewish Sabbath and how much Malachi had worked to overcome Arab-Christian resistance to a positive statement about the Jewish People from Vatican II, we included a reference to the progress in Jewish-Christian relations since then. After Mass Malachi's family joined the community for lunch and subsequently wrote moving letters of appreciation and thanks, for one of the most memorable and happy days that I personally experienced, one that will mark a special milestone in the annals of the family'. It was a moving event for the concelebrants also, a Jubilee occasion of forgiveness and reconciliation between the Martin family and the Jesuit family, a precursor of the Province Mass on the Feast of the Epiphany also at Belvedere.

McCabe, Kenneth W, 1935-2013, former Jesuit priest, priest of Westminster Diocese

  • Person
  • 07 January 1935-06 February 2013

Born: 07 January 1935, Carrick-on-Shannon, County Leitrim / Birr, County Offaly
Entered: 06 September 1952, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 1967
Died: 06 February 2013, Cherryfield Lodge, Milltown Park, Dublin (Priest of the Westminster Diocese, England)

Left Society of Jesus: 20 June 1966

Educated at Mungret College SJ

Priest of the Westminster Diocese, England

Funeral at Milltown Park, Dublin

Buried in Glasnevin Cemetary in the Jesuit burial plot.

Irish Jesuit News, February 20, 2013

Mourning Fr Ken McCabe

Fr. Ken McCabe (Westminster Diocese) died peacefully on the evening of Wednesday, February 6th. In recent years, a series of strokes left Ken struggling with severe health issues. Since 2010, he received wonderful nursing care from the team in Cherryfield Lodge. He had an unusual history, as Kevin O'Higgins recounts.

Ken had life-long links with the Irish Province. He was educated at Mungret College, and entered the Jesuit Novitiate in 1952. As a scholastic, he spent several years teaching in Belvedere College. During those years of Jesuit training, the plight of disadvantaged children became the main focus of his concern. In the mid-1960s, his efforts to sound the alarm about the mistreatment of children in Industrial Schools led to difficulties with both Church and State authorities. The upshot was that Ken departed from both Ireland and the Society. He was ordained to the priesthood for Westminster Diocese in 1967.

For the next 40 years, Ken devoted his energies to working on behalf of children from distressed families. He founded the Lillie Road Centre, which offered education and residential care to over 400 such young people. His final project was to establish a branch of this Centre in Edenderry, near Dublin.

During all those years in London, Ken maintained close links with many Irish Jesuits. Thanks to Fr. Joe Dargan’s decision to send novices to work with Ken on summer placements, those links transcended Ken’s own generation. It is wonderful that, in his final years, Ken returned to Milltown Park and the loving care of the nursing staff in Cherryfield. Fittingly, his mortal remains were laid to rest in the Jesuit burial plot in Glasnevin Cemetery. Ken was a great man, and a dedicated priest. May he rest gently in God’s love.

Interfuse No 151 : Spring 2013


Fr Kenneth W (Ken) McCabe (1935-2012) : former Jesuit

Kenneth W. McCabe was born in Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Leitrim, Ireland on 7th January 1935. After education at the Presentation Brothers School in Birr, Co. Offaly and Mungret College, Co. Limerick, he entered the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus in September 1952. After his Novitiate he studied for a Bachelor of Arts degree at University College Dublin and later taught at Belvedere College in Dublin. His theological formation was at Milltown Park in Dublin.

A profound interest in the connection between poverty and delinquency deepened during his studies and various pastoral placements, so much so that he saw this as his particular vocation as a priest. At that time – the early 1960's - the Irish Province of the Jesuits was involved mainly in running schools and colleges. In conscience Ken did not see his future in teaching and asked to be released from his Jesuit vows to work as a secular priest in Westminster. He was granted this leave in the spring of 1966 and after some months residing in Edgware parish while taking up a probationary year as a teacher at St James' School, and after a short period of study at Allen Hall, he was ordained to the Diaconate at St Edmund's in December 1966. He was ordained to the Priesthood at Sion Hill Convent in Dublin on 27th May 1967 by Bishop Pat Casey.

He returned to Edgware immediately after ordination and was then appointed to St Charles' Square. He became chaplain at the Cardinal Manning Boys School where he also did some part-time teaching. He moved residence from Ladbroke Grove to Brook Green. During this time he set up the “Lillie Road Centre - a service for children and families in times of trouble”. Fr Ken spent the next thirty years running the charity he had set up which had various incarnations in Chiswick and Osterley. He returned to Dublin to live with his sister Muriel in 2007. His health began to deteriorate and after a period in the Mater Hospital he was very kindly given a place at the Jesuit Retirement Home in Cherryfield Lodge, Milltown Park.

A personal appreciation by Kevin O'Higgins

Ken McCabe was a complex man, but with a very simple, straightforward faith. He took the Gospel seriously, made it the guidebook for his life, and everything he did followed from that. The Beatitudes could be seen as the script he tried his level best to follow. Perhaps because he kept his Christianity simple and straightforward, he was a force to be reckoned with! Ken was passionate about the causes he espoused, and stubborn to the point of driving other people to exasperation. Yet he was always in touch with the lighter side of life, especially when he could persuade a couple of people to join him at a table adorned with a pot of tea and some nice biscuits! He had a great sense of fun, and often enjoyed being mischievous, particularly when things were serious. His life was devoted to doing good, helping others, especially the most vulnerable, and always standing up for the truth. He was uncompromisingly true to his conscience, a maverick of the kind that the Church and society need more than ever!

Ken's life story merits a book. In fact, he has been mentioned in several books and articles already. Fifty years ago, at a time when few people wanted to listen, he tried his best to sound the alarm about the mistreatment of children in Industrial Schools. In a dark period for the Irish Church and State, the young Jesuit scholastic Ken McCabe took a courageous stand, even though it meant standing in a cold and lonely place and, ultimately, accepting exile from his beloved Ireland. He tumed that exile into a magnificent opportunity to do good. His children's charity in London helped to transform the lives of hundreds of young people, many of them of Irish descent. In the persons of Cardinal John Heenan and, later, Cardinal Basil Hume, Westminster Diocese encouraged Ken in his pioneering work, freeing him from more conventional parish work in order to help children in danger.

Over the years, more than 400 children passed through the Lillie Road Centre. Ken cherished every single one of them. Many young Jesuit students passed through the Lillie Road Centre also. Shortly after Ken began working in London, Fr. Joe Dargan decided to send novices to work with him on summer placements. This decision kept alive Ken's life-long link with Irish Jesuits. Providentially, many years later, when decisions had to be made regarding Ken's nursing care and, indeed, the final resting place for his earthly remains, one of the young Jesuits who had worked with him as a novice, Fr, Tom Layden, was now Provincial of the Irish Jesuits. Ken's family and friends, as well as his Diocese of Westminster, will be eternally grateful to Tom.

Initially, Ken fought against the process of slowing down. His last big project was to open an extension of his London charity near Dublin, in Edenderry. He acquired a wonderful house, and opened a new centre for troubled young people. Those who worked with Ken on this project knew that, even early on, there were signs that all was not well with his health. He did his very best to carry on regardless, but was actually relieved when he was finally persuaded that it was time to see a doctor. Scans revealed that he had suffered several minor strokes, and these bad begun to impair his memory and his ability to communicate.

Ken knew his energy, dynamism and even his independence were all slipping away. That was an unimaginably painful realisation for someone like Ken, who had always been, literally, in the driving seat, always pursuing some new project, always in control. The fact that he came to accept his new reality with so much grace was an indication that, in spite of appearances, Ken himself always knew that he wasn't really the one in charge. He fought the good fight for as long as possible.

About three years ago, in addition to his struggle with memory loss, Ken's physical health began to decline and he had to spend a couple of months in the Mater Hospital. From there, he moved to Cherryfield, into the loving care of Mary, Rachel and the entire staff. He was cared for also by the Jesuits of Cherryfield community, who went out of their way to make him feel welcome and at home. In his final two and a half years, Cherryfield gave back to Ken what he had offered to so many young people - care, understanding, love and a refuge from the storm.

To end, a recent memory of Ken. One Sunday afternoon, about four months ago, we were sitting in Cherryfield watching an Andre Rieu concert on the television. When the orchestra began to play the beautiful 2nd Waltz by. Shostakovich, Ken suddenly called to one of the nurses and said “I want to dance!” So they danced a waltz for a couple of minutes. I hadn't seen Ken so happy for many months. When he sat down, there was look of triumph on his face, as if to say “The old Ken McCabe spirit is alive and well”. It was. And it still is. May he waltz away to his heart's content, in God's loving company, forever and ever. Amen!

◆ Mungret Annual, 1959

Behind the Jesuit Curtain

Kenneth McCabe SJ

A Thing that always puzzled me w about the Jesuit in Mungret was the secrecy they inevitably displayed in any discussion about Jesuit life. Later I was to discover that the problem was by no means confined to Mungret. Men from all other Jesuit colleges had experienced the same mystery. For some unknown reason what took place behind the “Jesuit-curtain” was a secret.

I remember on one occasion bringing the subject up with a scholastic, This man had a sense of humour and decided to treat me to a highly imaginative account of what went on in the Jesuit novitiate. None of the common misconceptions of the novitiate of fiction was left unexplored. I heard of the practice of sweeping endless corridors with the inevitable tooth-brush. I was given vivid pictures of innocent-eyed novices obediently planting young cabbages upside down, I was even convinced of the benefits of sweeping swirling leaves against the fury of fierce March winds. The whole fantastic description (which I partly believed) filled me with a nagging curiosity, Surely, I told myself, there must be even stranger things to be seen by the initiated. It was with a spirit of adventure that I set out a year or two later to share in a first-hand peep behind the “Jesuit-curtain”.

The Irish Jesuits have their novitiate at Emo, near Portarlington, Co Leix I arrived there on September 7th, 1952 prepared for the worst. My first surprise was meeting another Mungret re presentative who had entered there the previous year. It was a relief to see tha: he was none the worse for his year with the Jesuits, and, in fact, he seemed to have benefited by the country air and Jesuit food. As I hadn't heard a word about this man since he left Mungret a year previously (another example of Jesuit secrecy) I was greatly relieved at what I saw. With this extra assurance I walked bravely into the Jesuits.

The Master of Novices was on the door-step to meet me and with him was a young man wearing a Jesuit gown over his ordinary lay clothes. This man I was told, was a second year novice and would be my guide or angel for the first two weeks in the house. When I said good-bye to my parents I began my grand tour of the house eager to see the worst.

I was amazed at what I saw. The house literally swarmed with young me dressed like my guide. The funny thing was that they all looked extremel cheerful and full of the joys of life. I met, too, the other young men who were to be my companions for the next two years in Emo. The whole place seemed so natural that I already began to have my doubts about the novitiate of fiction. However, I daren't ask my guide any thing the first night, so I decided to wait till morning to discover the worst.

A good night's sleep is always a revitalizing tonic. Next morning the clang of big bell left me with no illusions as to where I was but I found no difficulty getting up, eager to begin my round of exploration. (I must admit that the “first-fervour” attitude to getting up, which I had on that great morning, has ever since eluded me). First there was Mass and then breakfast. There followed an interview with the Master of Novices and also with his assistant. Then my guide told me we would have half an hour's manual work. This was it. I smiled bravely to myself and obediently went along to collect my tooth-brush. But here I had my first disappointment. I was given an ordinary, if well worn-out, brush and told to sweep, in an annoyingly normal way, a long corridor. The only item that came up to my expectations was the phenomenal length of the corridor. Bang went the tooth-brush myth.

The other items on the list of my Scholastic friend were eventually exploded in the same very ordinary way. Emo is blessed with extensive and very beautiful grounds and it takes forty vigorous novices all their spare time to keep them in reasonably good order, without wasting valuable time planting cabbages upside-down or sweeping leaves against the wind.

Life in the novitiate is divided mainly between prayer and learning the rules of the Society of Jesus. There is, of course, no shortage of games and recre ation that every normal young man must have. One or two features of novitiate life merit special mention. A month after his entrance the novice begins a thirty day retreat based on the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius. Without seeming too “pitious” every Jesuit must admit that this is one of the greatest experiences of his life. Even the schoolboy doesn't take long to be gripped by the intensity of the thirty days.

Perhaps the most unforgettable of the “tests” imposed on the Jesuit novice is the month he must spend in the County Home in nearby Mountmellick. The novice works there as a wardsman helping in the many chores of the hospital and around the old and straggling house. Comparatively speaking the work in the County Home is tough but the novelty carries him over the first few days and then he begins to enjoy the experience, It is no exaggeration to say that his month in “Mellich” is the most vivid memory the average young Jesuit carries with him from Emo. Perhaps for the first time in his life he will come face to face with real poverty and suffering. It is an experience that does much to mature the schoolboy novice and to imprint and mould in the future priest a respect and a love for Christ's poor.

At the end of two years in Emo the novice takes three perpetual vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Now he is a Jesuit for life. He says good bye to his friends in Emo and sets out for the next stage in his training, his university studies, which he does for three years at Rathfarnham Castle in Dublin,

University studies: the very idea might send a tremor of fear through the innocent reader. He might even think that it is at this stage that the Jesuit sheds his cloak of humility (it is a well known fact that all novices are humble) and begins his quest for wisdom and superiority. But this is not true. The average Jesuit confines himself to Bachelor of Arts degree and finds the work as tough as everyone else. At the end of three years, instead of being proud and superior, he is much mo likely to be humbler and far more aware of his own limits. Of course, occasionally the law of averages will send in the ranks of the society a genius, This young man might very well take pride in his achievements but if he does, he does so, not because he is a Jesuit, but because he is a man, as such, subject to the weaknesses of human nature. Strange though it may seem the briliant man is generally the most humble of all.

Three years in Rathfarnham is followed by three years in the midland bogs. In St Stanislaus College, near Tullamore, the Jesuit Scholastic studies philosophy to deepen his knowledge of the realities of life. More than anywhere else this is the place where the “schoolboy Jesuit” becomes the mature man, who in a short year or two, will called on to share some of his learning and training with the youth entrusted to the care of his society. This is duty that the young Jesuit eagerly to forward to.

So after eight years of training Jesuit Scholastic is considered ready for the colleges. This is where most of us first meet him. There are always three or four Scholastics in every Jesuit College. They are generally full of enthusiasm and ideas, both of which have been brewing since the young novice was first inspired by the ideals of St Ignatius. The mystery still remains however, why the Scholastic is so slow to share his secrets of Jesuit life. One explanation is that he does not wish to give the impression of “fishing” for vocations. St Ignatius wisely forbids his men to do this. However, once a possible “vocation” approaches a Jesuit friend and tells him of his intention, then the Jesuit will do all he can to encourage and direct him in his choice.

What kind of people join the Jesuits? There is no definite answer to this question. It is true to say that the majority of Jesuits are young men straight from school but many, too, have already tasted the pleasures of life in the world. Late vocations come from all walks of life and it is not unusual to find a wide variety of men in a Jesuit novitiate. How does his training affect the Jesuit-to-be? Jesuits are often accused of being all of a type; moulded in a set fashion and turned out stamped “Jesuit”. This accusation is losing vogue nowadays. The great diversity of work undertaken by Jesuits all over the world is an undeniable proof of the individuality of each member of the Society of Jesus. One thing is true, however. Every Jesuit is the same in so far as all are dedicated to a common cause, all are fired by a single ideal, all work under the same motto: Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam, to the Greater Glory of God.

This brief peep behind the “Jesuit curtain” shoud help to show that Jesuits are really human despite appearances or accusations to the contrary. Life in a college community is as rich in human experiences as is the life of any large family. Schoolboys see their Jesuit teachers as a group of austere but well-intentioned men, (at least I hope they do) men, who to all outward appearances may seem devoid of the many faults and weaknesses that are part and parcel of human nature.

The Jesuit, on the other hand, knows himself for what he really is. He has a fairly shrewd idea, too, of what his confrère really is beneath the cloak of external trappings. He knows his good qualities as well as his weaknesses and admires him for both. Together the Jesuit community try to preserve as much of the family spirit as can be preserved outside the natural family, Christmas in a Jesuit house would amaze even those who think they know Jesuits well. No effort is spared to make this homely of feasts as happy and as enjoyable as possible, Anyone still convinced of the legend of the Jesuit of fiction would be well advised to ask a Jesuit friend about his Christmas fes tivities, He will discover, that at least once a year, the Jesuit sees fit to doff his mask of formality and take an active part in the little simple joys that human nature delights in,.

Before concluding it might be well to retrace our steps and complete the description of the Jesuit training. After colleges the Scholastic goes to Milltown Park in Dublin where he reads Theology for four years, and is ordained at the end of the third. A final year of novitiate, called Tertianship, is spent at Rathfarnham Castle. Here the young priest does the full thirty days retreat for the second and last time. From then on he will make an annual retreat of eight days. At the end of his Ter tianship he is assigned to one of the many works carried on by his order.

This article is written to help anyone interested, to pierce the barrier of Jesuit secrecy. Anyone wishing to learn something of the Jesuit way of life will get enough from it to enable him to open a discussion with a Jesuit friend. There are no Jesuit secrets. If anyone still believes the Jesuit-of-fiction legend he should make a point of meeting and talking with a real Jesuit, Knock on the door of any Jesuit house. Ask to speak to a Jesuit priest. If he turns out to be a tall dark figure equipped with the legendary cloak and dagger, and a hat well down over his eyes, be sure to let me know of your discovery. However, I don't think such a person will have much trouble in realising that every Jesuit is first of all a man endowed in varying degrees, with the virtues and eccentricities of his kind.

I read a very powerful piece about moral courage, and the lack of it, by Dermot Bolger in yesterday's Irish Times.

He mentioned Fr. Kenneth McCabe:
"The young Jesuit, Kenneth McCabe, got a truthful report about Irish industrial schools to Donogh O’Malley in 1967. The minister was sufficiently shocked to establish a committee that abolished these lucrative sweatshops, but at the last minute McCabe was excluded from the committee. Tainted as a whistleblower, he resigned from the Jesuits and went to work as a priest with deprived London children."
The name rang a bell but it took me a while to place it.

When I was editing the Shanganagh Valley News in 1958, Fr. McCabe had contributed a short story called "Autobiography of a Stamp, or, Converted by the Jesuits" as a vehicle for appealing for used postage stamps for the Missions.

I bet at that stage he had little idea how his career was to pan out ten years later. I checked out the priest list in the Diocese of Westminster and he is listed there as retired and in a Jesuit nursing home in Milltown.

Until today, I had no idea he had run into trouble for following his conscience. This upset me enormously. I'm not sure why. I never met Fr. Kenneth. I had only corresponded with him by letter. But he was nonetheless part of my growing up and he belonged to a more innocent era, as the story of the stamp so strikingly illustrates. So perhaps my upset was at a loss of innocence, a nostalgia for a time when things seemed simpler, and fixed, and true for all time.

Mind you, my upset is slowly turning into a cold anger at how he was treated. From what I read in the Ryan Report he was one of four people proposed for the Committee of Inquiry, and came recommended by Declan Costello TD, but his name got "dropped" somewhere between the Government Memorandum and the final Cabinet decision. It is not clear what role the Jesuit order played in all of this but his resignation from the Order, if such, would not reflect well on them. On the other hand, he seems to be in some way under their care today.

This post is just a small contribution to making sure he, and his bravery, are not forgotten.

Of course I don't have as many readers as the Irish Times, but, never mind.

Update - 9/2/2013

In the third comment below, Fr. Kevin O'Higgins has informed me that "Fr. Kenneth McCabe died peacefully a few days ago (Wednesday, Feb 6) in Cherryfield nursing unit, at Milltown Park". He says Fr. Ken was "a genuinely great man" and I totally agree. May he rest in peace.

Fr. Kevin himself is no slouch, as his bio on the jesuit missions website shows. He says Fr. Daniel Berrigan inspired him to join the Jesuits, and as I was reading the bio I was also thinking of Fr. Roy Bourgeois who seems to have shared some of the same experiences as Fr. Kevin on the missions.

McDowell, Kevin, 1919-,1997 former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 25 June 1919-1997

Born: 25 June 1919, Moville, County Donegal / Rathgar, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 24 September 1946, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 03 June 1944, pre entry
Final Vows: 02 February 1959, Clongowes Wood College SJ

Left Society of Jesus: 13 November 1974 (Returned to Dublin Diocese)

by 1949 at Villefranche France (FRA) - studying

◆ The Clongownian, 1997


Father Kevin McDowell (formerly SJ)

Kevin McDowell was ordained for the Archdiocese of Dublin and joined the Society of Jesus in 1948. He came to Clongowes in the autumn of 1950 fresh from the Noviciate to succeed a relatively elderly Jesuit as Spiritual Father. In those days the Spiritual Father was responsible for the whole school and Kevin struck us immediately by his youthful energy and enthusiasm. We grew to love his Omagh accent and his sense of fun.

Daily Mass at 7.30 am was compulsory for everyone and it was Kevin's duty to say Mass day in day out. In those days of frequent Confession, he was also available in his room every morning before Mass, as well as on every Saturday evening. From time to time he used also to give talks on “topical” matters - occasionally (especially following “Line matches” in rugby which he might have been called on to referee) making pleas for a decrease in unparliamentary language!

Kevin was a great soccer player and - along with Fr Frewen - was a regular companion on “soccer evenings”. Although always very fair and sporting, he was the sort of player who took no prisoners and was a much feared member of the “Community” XI = in those days there was a sufficient number of able-bodied Jesuits to face the Boys XI, with a little help from one or two “Laymasters”!

More than once Kevin played a very important role in pouring oil on troubled waters, acting as negotiator-cum-peacemaker in differences of opinion between the student body and school administration. On one famous occasion he managed to cram all of the 52 members of Sixth Year into the Spiritual Father's room to parley about a possible resolution of a row which had developed on account of “unacceptable behaviour” in the Refectory!

My own personal memory of Kevin is of a pleasant, if shy, person, gifted with immense patience and a great judge of character. His long years of service to Clongowes were interrupted only by the year of his Tertianship (a final year of spiritual formation in a Jesuit's training). When transferred from Clongowes, Kevin spent time in Mungret College, until its closure was announced. At the end of its penultimate year, Kevin left the Jesuits (with a broken heart? - or so it was said) to return to the Dublin Archdiocese. He served as Parish Priest in a number of parishes in and around Dublin and eventually retired from Ringsend, having reached the age of 75.

He had spent some time convalescing in Cherryfield after a serious cancer operation, and it was that terrible illness which carried him off. I used visit him in the Bullock Harbour Retirement Home and he was so grateful to be remembered, appreciating even the most fleeting call. He often surprised me by his detailed recollection of events in Clongowes over 40 years previously. He never lost his youthfulness and zest for life and he regretted his enforced inactivity. But I will always remember Kevin as ever-young and am grateful to have known him and to have been guided by him during my time as a boy in Clongowes in the 1950s. May he rest in peace.


McShane, Philip, 1932-2020, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 18 February 1932-01 July 2020

Born: 18 February 1932, Bailieborough, County Cavan
Entered: 07 September 1950, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1963, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1968, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 01 July 2020, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Left Society of Jesus: 09 February 1973

Philip McShane (18 February 1932 – 1 July 2020) was an Irish mathematician and philosopher-theologian. Originally trained in mathematics, mathematical physics, and chemistry in the 1950s, he went on to study philosophy from 1956 to 1959. In 1960, after teaching mathematical physics, engineering, and commerce to undergraduates, and special relativity and differential equations to graduate students, McShane began studying theology. He did his fourth year of theology in 1963 and in 1968 began reading economics.

In a period that spanned over sixty years, McShane published numerous articles and twenty-five books.[1] His publications range from technical works on the foundations of mathematics, probability theory, evolutionary process, and omnidisciplinary methodology, to introductory texts focusing on critical thinking, linguistics, and economics. He also wrote essays on the philosophy of education. Beginning in 1970, he participated in and helped organize a number of international workshops and conferences addressing topics such as "ongoing collaboration,"[2] reforms in education, and communicating the basic insights of two-flow economics.[3]

Two Festschrift volumes were published to honor McShane, one in 2003[4] and the second in 2022. In the first, eighteen individuals contributed essays, and, at the request of the editor, McShane submitted an essay as well.[5] He also replied to the eighteen contributors in the essay "Our Journaling Lonelinesses: A Response.”[6] In the second Festschrift, twenty-four individuals wrote essays remembering and honoring McShane,[7] who was nominated for the Templeton Prize in 2011 and 2015.

Life and education
McShane was born in Baileboro, County Cavan.[8] When the McShane family moved to Dublin, Philip went to O'Connell School. He continued his education while training as a Jesuit at University College Dublin (BSc and MSc in relativity theory and quantum mechanics), St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg (Lic. Phil), Heythrop College (STL) and Campion Hall, Oxford (D.Phil.).[9] He lectured in mathematics at University College Dublin (1959-1960) and in Philosophy at the Milltown Institute of Theology and Philosophy (1968-1973).

McShane entered the Jesuits in September 1950 and spent two years in spiritual formation.[10] In 1952, in spite of having "acquired a 'broken head,' which meant he was unable to study, or even to do any serious reading, he was also allowed to risk a very challenging programme of mathematics, mathematical physics, physics and chemistry."[11] Eleven years later, after completing a B.Sc., an M.Sc. in relativity theory and quantum mechanics, and a Licentiate of Philosophy, he was ordained a Jesuit priest.

In 1956, McShane "shifted from graduate studies of mathematics and physics that included such works as the classic Space-Time Structure by Erwin Schrödinger,"[12] and embarked on what would be a lifelong venture of reading and appropriating the works of Bernard Lonergan, initially through a careful study of Lonergan's Verbum articles,[13] followed by a startling study Insight.[14] In the years that followed, he co-authored (with Garret Barden) Towards: Self-Meaning and wrote Music That Is Soundless. In the mid-1960s, he studied at Oxford University, where in August 1969 he successfully defended his doctoral thesis "The Concrete Logic of Discovery of Statistical Science," which soon after was published as Randomness, Statistics, and Emergence.[15] After the First International Lonergan Conference in Florida 1970, McShane took on the task of editing two volumes of the papers presented at that event.[16] In 1972, he decided to leave the Jesuits.[17]

"Towards a New Economic Order," Nashik, India, September 2010
In 1975, along with Conn O'Donovan, McShane founded the Dublin Lonergan Centre, in Milltown Park, Dublin.[18] In 1979, he served as visiting fellow in religious studies at Lonergan College, Concordia University, Montreal. In his course, McShane encouraged students to work through the exercises in his introductory book Wealth of Self and Wealth of Nations.[19] From 1974 until 1994, McShane taught philosophy at Mount Saint Vincent University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. When he retired from teaching in 1995, he began writing prolifically.[20] After retiring, McShane also accepted invitations to speak at international conferences and workshops. He gave keynote addresses at gatherings in Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America.

In the last years of his life, McShane wrote about the negative Anthropocene age in which we live and a future positive Anthropocene age of luminous collaboration.[21] In Questing2020, his final series of essays, he wrote of the possibility of human collaboration mirroring the psychic adaptation of starling murmuration.[22] When McShane died in July 2020, colleagues and former students around the globe paid tribute to him. A theologian from Africa described him as akin to an "African elder,"[23] another as someone who "gave counsel to think long-term, in terms of centuries rather than years or even decades,"[24] and a third as "someone I could always be myself around, even when I was angsty, anxious, or depressed … a friend, mentor, professor, and family member all at once."[25] A former student described "being amazed, when I asked him some questions, at his generosity—he tore out a chapter of something he was working on and gave it to me there and then."[26]

By his own account, McShane was humbled as a young man by the works of Chopin and fortunate to have discovered Descartes' achievement in geometry.[27] He wrote about "the luck of working with Lochlainn O'Raifeartaigh in graduate studies of mathematical physics in the mid-fifties."[28] He also studied and had a keen appreciation for Richard Feynman's Lectures on Physics, especially the third lecture.[29] McShane was fond of and often quoted the poetry of Gerard Manley Hopkins, Rainer Maria Rilke, and Patrick Kavanaugh. "Having music in his genes,"[30] he often referred to particular pieces of music. For example, the quiet emergence of five notes that grow to dominate Bruckner's 8th symphony was symbolic for him of the slow emergence of effective global collaborartion. "Bruckner's 8th has been symbolic for me of the climb to effective functional scientific collaboration: a five note echo trickling in at the beginning of the second movement and finally taking over the symphony: so, we trickle in at, we hope, the beginning of the second movement of the Anthropocene."[31]

In his "story of history,"[32] McShane referred to the works of Karl Jaspers, Arnold Toynbee, and Eric Voegelin and identified an axial period of "fragmented consciousness, a transition between what Lonergan calls the two times of the temporal subject."[33] There are references to the teachings of the Buddha, the music of Beethoven, and the works of James Clerk Maxwell in Bernard Lonergan: His Life and Leading Ideas.[34] In an essay written for a conference on peaceful coexistence,[35] he cited Elizabeth Barrett Browning's "Aurora Leigh" and William Shakespeare's Henry IV, and referred to Archimedes' "leap of inventiveness" when he created a hydrodynamic screw to raise water. In the same essay, he referred to Ezra Pound's image of a vortex as symbolic of a global community "committed to a science of cosmic care ... redeeming time from the mad destructive greed of the 'civilized' majority of the present global population."[36]

Various women influenced and shaped McShane's worldview. His extensive writings on the "Interior Lighthouse"[37] were inspired by Teresa of Ávila's Interior Castle.[38] McShane resonated with the English novelist and poet Mary Ann Evans, who went by the name of Georg Eliot. He regularly cited this line from the middle of Eliot's Middlemarch: "If we had a keen vision and feeling of all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel’s heart beat, and we should die of that roar which is the other side of silence. As it is, the quickest of us walk about well-wadded with stupidity.”[39] McShane cited more than a dozen times the lyrics of songs on Sinead O'Connor's album Faith and Courage in Lonergan's Standard Model of Effective Global Inquiry.[40] His appreciation and admiration of greatness extended to the performances of Serena Williams and Venus Williams on the tennis court,[41] the lifework of Nadia Boulanger, who was very much on McShane's mind when he wrote Process in the late 1980s,[42] and to “Molly Bloom’s long Gospel-speech,”[43] which McShane cited time and again. In his writings on economics, he regularly cited the British economist Joan Robinson, who was well known for her disagreement with standard economics, especially American economics.[44] He also referred to the work of Jane Jacobs, with whom he corresponded.[45]

McShane and Lonergan at the Milltown Institute, Dublin, in 1971.
In a lecture introducing the economic analysis of Lonergan at Fordham University in January 2000,[46] McShane quoted Stephen McKenna. When McKenna discovered the writings of Plotinus in his late 30s, he pondered the possibility of translating The Enneads from Greek into English and decided "this is worth a life." It could be said that McShane made a similar decision when he discovered the works of Bernard Lonergan. He described the "central contribution" of his doctoral thesis in these terms: "It is an attempt to establish on a wider basis of contemporary mathematics and science the position of B. Lonergan on the nature of randomness, statistics, and emergence."[47] Thirty years after completing his thesis, McShane edited for publication Lonergan's economic manuscript For a New Political Economy,[48] and two years later Phenomenology and Logic: The Boston College Lectures on Mathematical Logic and Existentialism.[49] He regularly referred to the final two chapters of the latter as a resource for trying to identify and come to grips with both the ontic and phyletic aspects of the "existential gap."[50]

For more than 60 years, McShane diligently read and reread Insight: A Study of Human Understanding,[51] and is arguably the leading interpreter of this compendious work. In the essay "Insight and the Trivialization of History," he described having been "enormously fortunate in coming to Insight in 1957 after graduate studies in general relativity and quantum electrodynamics."[52] In 2011, McShane was recognized for his contributions to Lonergan studies at the West Coast Methods Institute's 26th Annual Fallon Memorial Lonergan Symposium at Loyola Marymount University.

Capacities, needs, and interests
Towards an Adequate Weltanschauung[53]
The cultivation of an adequate worldview was a focus of McShane's early writings, and remained so throughout his life, although in the later years of his life he would write of Praxisweltanschauung.[54] In his rather peculiar doctoral thesis,[55] McShane aimed to reorient the philosophy of science away from general considerations towards a reflection on scientific praxis, again, through a two-fold attention of the mathematician, physicist, biophysicist, and biochemist. He claimed that the world view "emergent probability"[56] is a verifiable, anticipatory heuristic that is not "abstract" in the pejorative sense of the word.

The Weltanschauung thus given is not a set of abstract propositions or a speculative metaphysics, but a structured anticipation. Moreover, that anticipation may not be the methodical anticipation of the results of just one science, but an integrated anticipation of the results of a hierarchy of sciences, such indeed as our inclusive principle of emergent probability provides.[57]

Regarding the publication of his Oxford doctoral thesis, McShane wrote that "the book might well have been subtitled Towards an Adequate Weltanschauung."[58] This claim might appear odd, even exaggerated, given the questions he dealt with in his thesis—ostensibly specialized questions in the philosophy of math, physics, biophysics, and biochemistry. McShane's position, stated in the original preface, is that a viewpoint on the relationship of physics to chemistry and chemistry to botany is part of an adequate worldview. "Without that thought one lacks a basic component for the conception of world process. The present work deals with the central element and the heuristic conception of world process."[59]

In Music That Is Soundless (1969), he wrote about what he considered a core component of a comprehensive worldview: our human capacity and need for conversations, or what he called "Bud A,"[60] a "bud in our birth that clamours in solitude."[61] The book is an invitation to attend to "the conversation that we are" (Hölderlin) by asking self-attentively: "When was I last understanding, understood? When did I last speak? When did I last listen?[62]

At the heart of the worldview that McShane wrote about, taught, and advocated is the human capacity and need for a particular doubling. We humans are capable of having conversations about conversations while asking ourselves what happens when we are truly understanding, listening, and speaking.[63] Patient contemplation can lead us to a better understanding of understanding, a better listening to listening, and a better speaking of speaking. Regarding the basic question, When was my last real conversation? "one may honestly find that one has little or no data,"[64] especially if cultural conditions are not favorable to real conversations: "Ten thousand people, maybe more / People talking without speaking / People hearing without listening."[65]

"The Inside-Out of Radical Existentialism," chapter 5 of Wealth of Self and Wealth of Nations.
In the introductory book Wealth of Self and Wealth of Nations (1975), which might have been subtitled "Towards an Adequate Worldview,"[66] the double focus took the form of an invitation to appropriate, in as much detail as possible, the "inner"[67] dynamics of the process of understanding why, for example, the rule for getting square roots actually works. McShane included some simple diagrams in this book to help the reader appropriate, or "self-taste," what-ing (chapters 2 and 3), is-ing (chapters 4 and 5), what-to-do-ing (chapter 6), believing (chapter 7), symbolizing conveniently and judiciously (chapter 8), and exploring potentialities for living through the arts (chapter 9).[68] In the final chapter of this book, McShane made the remarkable claim that a change of framework, or point of view, is both possible and desirable if humans are to survive. But there is a Catch-22: "The need for change in point of view is thoroughly clear only from a changed point of view."[69]

In the Epilogue to Music That Is Soundless, McShane wrote that "to raise with seriousness the question, What is understanding? is to venture into a quest of scientific dimensions."[70] What 'scientific dimensions' meant to him in 1968 was mediated by his study of relativity theory and quantum mechanics at University College, Dublin (1952–56). In both his doctoral thesis and "Image and Emergence: Towards and Adequate Weltanschauung"[71] (one of two papers he wrote for an international congress that took place in Florida in 1970), McShane was traveling along what he would later call "Butterfield Way."[72]

The study of organic development
Organic development had been a topic of interest for McShane in the 1960s, and in fact was a possible topic of his thesis. "I recall especially wanting to see could I lift the biological logic of someone like Woodger into a full genetic logic."[73] What he knew would have been a "lengthy aside"[74] in the doctoral thesis, became one of his central interests around 2005, when he took a serious interest in development, in part because of Robert Doran's question "What is systematic theology?"[75] In the spring of 2008, McShane decided to write a series of essays to better read a single paragraph in Insight about three steps for studying organic development. A first step is to descriptively differentiate different parts of an organism;[76] a second step is to accumulate a group of insights relating various parts to events and operations; and

a third step is to effect the transition from the thing-for-us to the thing-itself, from insights that grasp described parts as organs to insights that grasp conjugate forms systematizing otherwise coincidental manifold of chemical and physical processes. By this transition one links physiology with biochemistry and biophysics. To this end, there have to be invented appropriate symbolic images of the relevant chemical and physical processes.[77]

Wealth of Self and Wealth of Nations (2nd ed., 2021), p. 91.
McShane identified the three-step procedure for studying organic development as perhaps the most obscure challenge for scholars with an interest in the works of Lonergan.[78] He would add to the obscure challenge by adding the word self to the sentence to highlight the starting point of a study of the developing human: "Self-study of an organism begins from the thing-for-us, from the organism as exhibited to our senses."[79] He referred to the need to bring the study of human development under heuristic control as "a missing link."[80]

In Interpretation from A to Z (2020), McShane was still focused on the methodological study of organic development.[81] The central problem was and is the genesis of a genetic viewpoint that will replace "daft reductionism that chatters away about genes and information theory."[82] In this, the last book published in his lifetime, he referred to the challenge as "the up-grading of Aristotle, whose flaw is merely his time in history."[83] In chapter "J ~ Inventing Techniques," he wrote that the invention and implementation of convenient and appropriate symbolic images is "the honest starting place of a genuine science of humanity," an "issue that has to be faced in the contemporary reality"[84] of what he called aggreformism, a word he coined in 1969 to refer to a sublation of Aristotelian hylemorphism. The contemporary need is to create an ethos of inventing convenient symbols and reading, for example, the semicolons in the expression f (pi ; cj ; bk ; zi ; um ; rn)[85] or another appropriate symbolic expression. In either case, the symbolism protects those studying development from "substituting pseudo-metaphysical mythmaking for scientific inquiry."[86] McShane wrote that "the semicolons point to the complex solution to the root problem hierarchy theory—aggreformism—a problem that baffles the systems theorists—when they notice it—and the followers of Bertalanffy."[87]

Two-flow economics
In 1968 McShane began reading Lonergan's 1944 manuscript "Essay in Circulation Analysis" and made his first attempt to present the material in the summer of 1977. By his own account, he "estimated that [he] had spent twenty hours on each page of the manuscript over a period of about five years."[88] On various occasions and in various countries—including Australia, Canada, India, Korea, Mexico, and the U.S.—he presented the key issues underlying the significant transition from the Marxist, neo-Marxist, Keynesian, and neo-Keynesian analyses to an empirically verifiable analysis.[89] In January 2000, McShane gave a series of lectures on Lonergan's economics at Fordham University's Lincoln Center campus in New York City.[90] Ten years later, he was invited to give the keynote address and lead discussions at a three-day conference on economic theory in Nashik, India.[91]

In his published works on economics, McShane explored different facets of what he called “a triple paradigm shift in economic thinking” that he attributed to Lonergan.[92] One shift is to a theory of two-flow dynamic analysis that will replace one-flow static analysis. With a bow to Schumpeter, McShane identified this shift as “a theory of economics dynamics that definitely crosses the Rubicon.”[93] A second shift is to an emerging framework of global collaboration that, in good time, will subsume all disciplines, all fields of study.[94] The third shift is “towards a deep and precise plumbing of the depths and heights of human desire and imagination.”[95]

McShane drew the following analogy to identify the shift to two-flow economics. Newton reached for a theory of motion that would unify the physics earthly motions and celestial bodies, something that was beyond both Kepler and Galileo. In a sense, he reduced two types of motion to one. The leap to two-flow economics is one that does not reduce, but differentiates, for example between the consumption of a submarine sandwich bought at the local delicatessen and the “consumption” of the meat slicer used to make the sandwich. “Instead of Newton’s great leap to get two into one, we have a great leap of getting one into two.”[96]

The Key Diagrams: From One-Flow to Two-Flow Economics.
The basic oversight that permeates the current study and implementation of economic models is the failure to identify a split in the productive process, one that needs to be made before adding variables such as banks, taxes, and international trading. “There is a type of firm that is pregnant with consumer goods: think of the restaurants in Chinatown or Little Italy. There is also the type of firm that is in the business of providing, say, varieties of large cooking ovens in restaurants all over the borough.”[97] Melding two firms into one has been institutionalized by publishers, research universities, and even papal initiatives over a period of more than 200 years. McShane refers to this as “a staleness of perspective and a settled non-scientific attitude that has haunted economic studies for centuries.”[98] He claimed that the perspective and attitude haunts the diligent research of Thomas Piketty and James Galbraith, as “the drive represented by these and other groups who hover round the issue of inequality of income is not sufficiently scientific in its classificatory backing to escape my extremely odd view that their efforts do not escape the category of statistically-infested journalism.”[99]

McShane's view is that the search for new data to cast light on old questions—for example, whether new inequality metrics are needed and how inequality of household incomes might be estimated—must clear-headedly and consistently keep in mind “the fact that there are two types of firms, a simple local analysis that nevertheless leads to there being pretty well two of everything.”[100] Without identifying two-firms, different phases of economic development,[101] and the possibility of dynamically balanced cross-over payments between two distinct economic circuits,[102] intimations of improvements in standards of living without economics slumps[103] tend to sound like pie in the sky, while analyses of national and transnational exchanges tend to be “grossly unhelpful.”[104]

Towards efficient global collaboration
An emergent need to "Turn to the Idea"
In various writings, McShane cited the work of Arnie Næss, the father of “deep ecology.” In 1989, while in Oxford writing Process: Introducing Themselves to Young (Christian) Minders, “detecting, leaning into India, of history’s effort to educate us, I was astonished to find his [Næss's] detecting of a parallel structure of cosmic deliberation.”[105] Thirty years later, while writing “Structuring the Reach Towards the Future” for The 3rd Peaceful Coexistence Colloquium in Helsinki, Finland (June 2019), he returned to Naess's work for the first time since he had read it thirty years earlier in Oxford.[106]

The stair diagram. Interpretation from A to Z, p. 20.
McShane maintained that Næss was on to something, for example, when he wrote: “Applied to humans, the complexity-not-complication principle favours division of labour, not fragmentation of labour.”[107] The challenge is to discover and implement a way to intervene effectively in intertwined cycles of natural-historical processes.[108] The web of intertwined processes currently presents humans of all colors and creeds with a myriad of challenges that include biodiversity loss and species extinction, water scarcity, unemployment, and children’s health and education. It is no mean problem if one is mindful of the needed restart in economics, not to mention other areas in need of reformation such as education.

Beginning in the late 1960s, McShane wrote about this “turn to the idea”[109] of dividing up labor, citing the influence of Bernard Lonergan,[110] who also wrote about dividing up intellectual labor after puzzling about how that might be done efficiently for more than thirty years. In Method in Theology, after briefly describing a conception of method as an art and second conception of method as a successful science, where “science means natural science” and “theologians often have to be content if their subject is included in a list not of sciences but of academic disciplines,”[111] he described the needed “turn to the idea” of efficient collaboration in these words: “Some third way, then, must be found and, even though it is difficult and laborious, that price must be paid if the less successful subject is not to remain a mediocrity or slip into decadence and desuetude.”[112]

The idea is to divide up the labor of caring for the cosmos “functionally,” so not along the lines of disciplinary silos, but along the lines of “distinct and separable stages in a single process from data to ultimate results.”[113] The various stages, steps, or specializations are essentially open and reciprocally dependent successive partial contributions to communicating to “the almost endlessly varied sensibilities, mentalities, interests, and tastes of [humankind].”[114]

McShane wrote about the needed turn sketched by Lonergan's in the 1969 Gregorianum article in various works.[115] In chapter 5 of The Allure of the Compelling Genius of History, he compared Lonergan's breakthrough discovery to the invention of Hedy Lamarr of a torpedo-guidance system, a system which depended on what she called “frequency hopping.” “In that chapter [5], an article of 1969, Lonergan came ‘to invent a fundamental wireless technology,’† which will slowly come to thrive in post-modern technologies of guidance and communication.”[116]

"Educating for Cosmopolis," First Latin-American Lonergan Workshop, Puebla, Mexico, June 2011
One of McShane’s contributions to implementing transdiciplinary collaboration was to identify disciplinary “sloping.” In the essay "Slopes: An Encounter," he wrote that "as the disciplines move up from research through interpretation to history and to dialectic, there is a convergence of data and interest."[117] He wrote the following about Lonergan's breakthrough to restructuring of theology, indeed of all areas of study—a point that Karl Rahner caught and made[118] against those who might claim the prescribed eightfold division of labor is strictly theological method:

Now he had found it, so to speak, on a string, in a String Theory of the Cosmos of meaning. The scattered beads of disciplinary sweat could be seen now as strung together sweetly. The jumble of theology’s fragmented areas – Scripture studies, doctrines, history, dialectical and pastoral scholarship – strung together in a circle of eight handing-round efforts.[119]

In his keynote address “Arriving in Cosmopolis,” which McShane wrote for the First Latin-American Lonergan Workshop in Puebla, Mexico, June 2011, he estimated the numbers of specialists—identified by Lonergan as researchers, interpreters, historians, dialecticians, foundational (persons), doctrines or policy (makers), systematizers, and communicators—efficiently collaborating around the globe when the earth's total population reaches 10 billion. In the same essay, he placed what is called the Standard Model in physics within a larger standard model of global collaboration, one that situates the dynamics of physics within a dynamics of human progress.[120]

The structure of dialectic
While McShane identified the implementation of genetic method as Lonergan's most obscure challenge to his disciples, he identified dialectic as his clearest challenge,[121] though by no means the easiest. It is hard to say how many tens of thousands of words he wrote about the structure of dialectic,[122] which he described as a “shocking, brilliant, innovative, invitation."[123] To arrive at an approximation, one would need to consider various website essay series,[124] as well as published articles and chapters in books.[125] As with other areas of focus and interest, McShane's prodigious writings and teachings on the structure of dialectic call for the kind of creative research and communal recycling that he did his best to initiate.

In an attempt to communicate the challenge popularly and without footnotes, McShane wrote three chapters on dialectic in Futurology Express. There he described dialectic as a mix of private and public tasks of dialectic elders who are flexible, “like the flexibility of a great tennis player meeting the oddest of volleys,”[126] and who have “minds grasping for the flickers of integral human goings-on.”[127] He related this to the task of Comparison, one of six italicized words in Lonergan's terse description of the structure of dialectic. He adds that those doing Comparison are competent in scientific understanding and autobiographically appreciative of the lengthy, patient messing around required to become intelligently competent, as opposed to merely technically competent. “The issue is the personal cultivation of what is called authentic nescience.”[128] Dialectic becomes radically public when dialecticians “lay their cards on the table,” check one another by asking basic questions, even about themselves, and strive for a hard-won consensus on “what might be called an idealized version of previous reaches of humanity, showing the past something better than it was.”[129]

In a book published posthumously, McShane identified dialectic as needed “to link Aristotle’s three [data, theory, verification] with Drucker’s [policy, planning, executive strategies] and fill out the elements in Næss.”[130] He claimed that what is missing and desperately needed by those concerned about sustainability and survival is methodical deliberation about deliberation. “Deliberating over Archimedes’ deliberation is to push us towards a radical effective shift in our view of the disorientations of industrious humanity.”[131]

McShane’s invitation to contemporaries to lay their cards on the table regarding their personal views on serious understanding reached a humorous, brutally honest, and possibly disturbing high point in one of his final essays, “On the Stile of a Crucial Experiment.”[132] In the first paragraph of this essay, he recalled a scene from the film Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, a shootout when Virgil and Morgan Earp called out members of a group of outlaws called The Cowboys. "It was a calling-out of the usual sort in Western films, with the good guys and the bad guys clearly identified."[133] In the last paragraph of the essay, McShane did his own calling-out:

There is, then, my simple calling out, which is just a repeat of Lonergan’s: this is the technique of discomforting intersubjectivity that is capable of “providing a statistically effective form for the next cycle of human action.”[134] There is my broader calling out: I challenge you to check—that word in its many senses—your biased corralled stile-sitting against serious understanding.[135] Both my simple call and my broader call-out is to global humanity and not just to Lonergan students, but I have sung out that joke abundantly already.[136]

Engineering progress
The proposed “turn to the idea” of beautiful, efficient global collaborators intending “cumulative and progressive results,”[137] with a sub-group “bearing fruit”[138] in local communications, clashes with notions of “pure science” as opposed to “applied science,” and notions of “hard sciences” as opposed to arts, humanities, and social sciences. These notions tend to dominate both popular culture and academic praxis. The first set of contrasting notions, which was popularly expressed in the American television sitcom The Big Bang Theory,[139] still permeates many a worldview. The second set permeates current divisions of majors, departments, and schools in higher education. It also permeates efforts to use “strictly” or “purely scientific” criteria to establish a precise meaning of Anthropocene,[140] and to pin down where and when the purported new geologic epic began. The ongoing effort to locate a Global Boundary Stratotype Section and Point (informally known as "golden spike") on the part of the Anthropocene Working Group assumes a methodological divide between scientists, humanists, social scientists, and others.[141] It would seem that "aesthetic loneliness" is on the periphery of scientific method while scientific wonder is on the periphery of a liberal arts education.[142]

First page of a 1566 edition of Nichomachean Ethics in Greek and Latin
In various places McShane traced the implicit or explicit views to Aristotelian notions of speculative and practical science.[143] It is an age-old belief and expectation that contrasts practice (from Ancient Greek πρᾶξις [prâxis]—human doing and action, the conduct resulting from deliberations and the choices humans make), theory (from Greek θεωρία [theōria]—contemplation, speculation), and making (from Greek ποίησις [poiēsis]). For Arisotle, praxis differs from theory, making, and the technology used in producing what is made.[144] While both theory and practice involve thinking, the former aims at "speculative" or "theoretical" knowledge of what is unchanging, while the latter aims at practical, less precise knowledge of human actions.[145] It would have made no sense to Arisotle to ask if there were fundamental questions about nature (from Greek φύσις [physis]) whose solution depends on the character of the individual studying nature.[146]

To shake up and out a rather odd meaning of “metaphysics,”[147] as well as what he described as “a psychology conservatively grounded in a certain facticity of the past,”[148] McShane replaced the word metaphysics with futurology,[149] later with engineering.[150] He envisaged a globally shared Praxisweltanschauung of engineering progress, an “adequate geogenetic heuristics of history.”[151] In the last essay of the Æcornomics series, titled “Engineering as Dialectic,” he wrote optimistically of “some few people who will face the details of seeding the slow, serious, self-sacrificing ‘resolute and effective intervention in this historical process.’”[152]

With regard to a possible shared Praxisweltanschauung, McShane regularly posed this question: “Do you view humanity as possibly maturing—in some serious way—or messing along between good and evil, whatever you think they are?”[153] Expressing and defending one's position effectively moves one beyond Weltanschauung to Praxisweltanschauung, even if one's view is that theory and praxis are as different as carrying out specialized research at CERN and signing and implementing the Paris Agreement to reduce greenhouse emissions and limit global warning to 1.5 °C. Furthermore, expressing and defending one's view about the future of humanity autobiographically, and in the company of others doing the same,[154] is an intimation of doing dialectic, which requires brutal honesty, for example, about one's view regarding the place of heuristic structures and convenient symbolisms in engineering progress.[155]

Language, style, and clarity
One criticism of McShane's work was that the language he used, the neologisms he created, and the style of his writings were unnecessarily obscure and were off-putting for some readers whom, at times, he addressed directly: “I will not in fact be talking here about systems of philosophy. I will be talking about the reader, you, and asking you to attend to yourself, to ask yourself certain simple questions, to reach elementary answers.”[156] Time and again, he encouraged his readers to take our eyes of the page while reading and cited what Gaston Bachelard wrote in The Poetics of Space about reading a house or a nest with one's eyes off the page.[157] His colleague and long-time friend Conn O’Donovan recalled reading the typescript of Plants and Pianos in 1971 and “thinking that McShane’s written expression was not as precise as it might be, that he was beginning to let language run away with him.”[158] Some thirty years after reading that typescript, O’Donovan asked:

Was I then witnessing in McShane the emergence of a deliberate, self-consciously new approach to language and meaning? Was he perhaps deciding to allow language to run away with him, but somehow under his control, and not to allow himself to be controlled by already controlled meaning? Was this a key moment in the development of his own special kind of creative scholarly writing?[159]

In Memoriam: Philip McShane (1932-2020)
Another colleague wrote in his tribute to McShane that while he “could be very orderly and disciplined in his writings and lectures, not infrequently in later years both types of his presentations were sprinkled with verbal novelties, asides, puns, jokes, and other unusual elements. Some colleagues find that this style facilitates their understanding, but others find that it impedes it.”[160] A younger colleague wrote in his contribution to the same Festschrift that “soon after Method was published [1972], Phil seized on Lonergan’s notion of ‘linguistic feedback’ and its essential role in advancing self-appropriation, both phylogenetically and ontogenetically. For years, he practically flogged the theme of linguistic feedback.”[161] An example of such feedback is replacing the letter “c” with the letter “k” in the word heuristic or pocket.[162]

One of the most extensive published criticisms of McShane's language, style, and clarity occurred in 2001 before the publication of Lonergan's Phenomenology and Logic, which McShane edited and introduced. One of the readers invited by the University of Toronto Press to review McShane's editor's introduction and appendix had significant reservations and asked him to rewrite the appendix or eliminate it altogether.[163] The reader questioned his “intent on mystifying” what is “already familiar to every competent phenomenologist,” and added that “Lonergan himself, in this reader’s opinion, was not in the least inclined towards esotericism or mystification.”[164]

In his reply to the reader, McShane wrote that his efforts to contextualize the volume were aimed at “saving it from haute vulgarization,”[165] or what he would sometimes call negative haute vulgarization—the clear, direct expression that “Joey” had hoped to find in the editor's introduction. He also recalled a favorite quote from Samuel Beckett, about direct expression:

Here is direct expression−pages and pages of it. And if you don't understand it, Ladies and Gentlemen, it is because you are too decadent to receive it. You are not satisfied unless form is so strictly divorced from content that you can comprehend the one almost without bothering to read the other. This rapid skimming and absorption of the scant cream of sense is made possible by what I may call a continuous process of salivation. The form that is an arbitrary and independent phenomenon can fulfill no higher function than that of a stimulus for a tertiary or quartary conditioned reflex of dribbling comprehension.[166]

Had McShane gone too far or, perhaps, not far enough? While writing about the short-term challenge of implementing a child-friendly pedagogy pivoting on the "Childout Principle,"[167] he acknowledged that a key challenge was to do something requiring a cultural shift and a new language: “You might begin to write yourself and the world with a new alphabet, in a new language. ‘The alphabet writes the world, and the world comes to pass through the alphabet: writing and world coexist in a state of feverish rapture that defies language.'"[168]

Idiosyncratic economics
In 1977 McShane applied to the Canada Council for a grant to work on economics. One of the assessors of his application wrote: “What we have here is a case of two idiosyncratic theologians trying to do idiosyncratic economics. The probability of this being fruitful is not zero, but it is not much higher.”[169] Thirty years later, when McShane addressed an audience at University Seoul, a professor in the audience denied anything idiosyncratic or original in what McShane was presenting and remarked “it is all in Mankiw,”[170] referring to Gregory Mankiw’s introductory economics textbook and blockbuster bestseller Principles of Economics.[171] More recently, the Australian economist Paul Oslington has written a critique of Lonergan’s economics that includes a critique of McShane for “overselling” Lonergan's economics in the editor's introduction to For a New Political Economy.[172]

McShane considered the basic insights of two-flow economic analysis empirically verifiable and accessible to high school students.[173] He did, however, recognize that it would not be easy "to change a recipe that is 200 years old."[174] In addition, he identified a needed correction to a mistake he had made in the area of the pedagogy. In his 2019 essay “Finding an Effective Economist: A Central Theological Challenge,” McShane described his mistake in these words:

Looking back now with wonderful hindsight, we [Lonergan and he] were making the wrong moves. We should have put his request of 1968 in the context of the eighth functional specialty’s follow-through that I call C9. The mood of statistically-effective outreach should have dominated both my two 1977 presentations and his six years of teaching.[175]

What McShane described as "the mood of statistically-effective outreach" refers to teaching as communications, a type of direct discourse that is related to but distinct from the indirect discourse of research, interpretation, and history. Direct communications − which invites, persuades, and cajoles students, colleagues, friends, and neighbors to makes sense out of distinct flows of basic and non-basic (surplus) goods and services − might generate "backfires,"[176] for example when a bright students asks what an IS/LM curve (also known as the IS/LM model) is and why it is not viable for real economic analysis.[177] While McShane wrote introductory texts, including the preface to the 2017 edition of Economics for Everyone inviting the serious reader to imagine "the concrete reality of, say, a small bakery in its dependence on firms that supply its needs,"[178] he also recognized the need for "massively innovative primers that would meet millennial needs, 500-page texts of empirically rich, locally oriented, normatively focused non-truncated writing."[179]

Breaking with tradition
An implicit criticism of McShane breaking with tradition occurred during the planning stages of the conference “Revisiting Lonergan’s Anthropology” that took place in Rome in November 2013.[180] The organizers of the event did not invite him to take part in the event, either by giving a talk or by participating in one of the various panels. McShane, who was never interested in founding a “a little school of Lonergan at the Gregorian”[181] or at some other Jesuit university in North America, published a critique of the conference in Rome, which for him symbolized what he called Lonerganism.[182]

I have, in recent years, made quite clear my disagreement with that tradition that now prevails in Lonergan studies, of avoiding the challenge of functional collaboration. Indeed, of not noticing, ignoring, avoiding—whatever—that the question, “What does Lonergan mean by functional collaboration?” has not been taken seriously by the group. I thus give a definite meaning to the boldfaced word whatever by my title: the group seems—indeed quite evidently is—intent on muzzling the scientific Lonergan.[183]

A Cij matrix of possible conversations, face to face, or through journals or electronic exchanges.
Like Lonergan, McShane took seriously what Butterfield wrote about the scientific revolution "outshining everything since the rise of Christianity and reducing the Renaissance and Reformation to the rank of mere episodes, mere internal displacements, within the system of medieval Christendom."[184] Both men advocated the development and implementation of apt symbolism and heuristic structures.[185] This had and continues to have what might be called an "electrifying" effect upon those in academic disciplines that seem to thrive without implementing symbolism and heuristics. “Whether it is Cij or W3, the symbolism reminds, cajoles, and forces the authors not to sit comfortably on the fence between commonsense eclecticism and scientific collaboration.† The symbols, you might even say, are a way of electrifying that fence.”[186]

With respect to his and others’ efforts to shift towards the idea and the reality of functional collaboration, which requires some form of communal implementation, McShane knew it would be a form of learning by doing. Since the needed division of labor is not continuous with much of current academic practice, he expected that the adventure[187] in the decades to come would be so-so at best. It was for this reason that McShane would quip: “If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.”[188] He had a leading role in organizing various “doings,” one of them an international conference in 2014 that resulted in the publication of a volume of essays[189] in which each of the twelve authors implemented the same four-part structure: Context, Content, Hand-On, and Final Reflections. He wrote the following evaluation of the volume of essays published in 2016:

We stumbled away, as best we could, from the ethos of academic disciplines. We pretended to be “at the level of the times,”† as any wise doctorate student does in a doctorate thesis. But none of us were. Further, part of the paradox of luminosity and adult growth is that elder members of our group were regularly better tuned to “all that is lacking”†† than younger members. I, then, more than others, knew what a shabby shot we were having at getting the show on the road.[190]

Two years later, McShane participated in a round table discussion of Method in Theology at the West Coast Methods Institute at Loyola Marymount University. In preparation for the conference, McShane had written an essay proposing a paradigm for panel discussions, what he called “a full heuristic paradigm.”[191] He submitted his essay to Method: Journal of Lonergan Studies, which had previously published five of his essays.[192] The referee's report sent to him was succinct and did not recommend publishing the essay, as those "involved in 'Lonergan studies' need insights as much if not more than prophetic exhortations."[193] In his reply to the co-editor of the journal, McShane did not take issue with the use of the word prophetic to describe his essay, but he underscored that prior to Lonergan's discovery of the dynamics of functional collaboration in 1965, he had “clearly shifted the norms of the usual trivial comparison-work to the control of a genetic sequence of prior efforts to understanding whatever.”[194] The rejection of McShane's essay for publication inspired him to write the series of essays Public Challenging the Method Board.[195]

From time to time, McShane described his own efforts as “random dialectics,” so not the structured encounter that he wrote about at length and only experienced in the “proto-dialectic”[196] exercises in the last year of his life. Over the years, he invited colleagues to step forth and indicate publicly where and how he had gone astray reading Insight and Method in Theology. The response was what he called “disgusting non-scientific silence.”[197]

While McShane admitted having benefitted from a certain kind of luck in his education, he also realized that some of his works were simply “too far out” and did not expect to see much success in his lifetime.[198] Most contemporaries in philosophy and theology had not worked with Markov tensors or thought to use Greek symbols to imagine the longitude and latitude of Luther or Descartes on an expanding globe of meaning.

"Toynbee's A Study of History can be regarded as an attempt at a great Markovian reduction of the historical process to a very few variables and very large subdivisions and the consequent description of the process by a multiple Markov tensor of manageable rank.”† My own imaging shifts this tensor into an earth-sphere expanding out along a radial axis t—this helps to glimpse—think longitude and latitude for θ and Φ—my meaning of θΦT. Think of the θΦT weave of pairs like Antioch and Alexandria, Luther and Lainez, Descartes and Dilthey, whatever.[199]

McShane's long-term optimism regarding the emergence of a creative minority caring for the globe was and is consistent with the worldview "emergent probability," which was the focus of his doctoral thesis. In the Preface to the 2nd edition of the book version of his thesis, which McShane wrote in the fall of 2012, he cited a long passage from Insight where Lonergan wrote that the possibility of a recurrence scheme beginning to function shifts from a product of fractions to their sum when any one of the events (A or B or C or ...) of the scheme occurs.[200] He concluded the Preface with these words: "The cyclically-summed actualities can, over millennia, shift from Poisson distribution to a Normal and normative law, giving supreme plausibility to a Tower of Able of serious intimate† understanding grounding, literally, a plain plane of radiant life in the next million years."[201]

O'Brien, Oliver, 1920-1994, former Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA ADMN/7/303
  • Person
  • 30 June 1920-29 October 1994

Born: 30 June 1920, Derry, County Derry
Entered: 07 September 1939, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 29 July 1954, Milltown Park, Dublin
First Final Vows: 02 February 1957, Belvedere College SJ
Died: 29 October 1994, Calvary Hospital, Adelaide, Australia (priest of Catholic Archdiocese of Adelaide)

Left Society of Jesus: 1993 for Adelaide Diocese

1966/1967 Corpus Christi, Australia
by 1985 working in Catholic Archdiocese of Adelaide, Australia

O'Callaghan, Thomas, 1906-1978, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 07 August 1906- June 1978

Born: 07 August 1906, Waterford, County Waterford / Merrion, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 01 September 1924, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1940, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1944, Mungret College SJ, Limerick

Left Society of Jesus: 13 December 1968

Early education at O’Connells School, Dublin

by 1968 at Sir William Collins, Edgeware London (ANG) working

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1978


Father Tom O’Callaghan

After life's fitful fever he sleeps well. Tom was rarely still in life. He rarely spoke sotto voce. Pacing, pacing, up and down outside the rail in Donnybrook, chain-smoking cigarettes and matches; intense and often very individual instructions to the team at half time... Did Tom ever sit behind the wheel of a car? Little things like traffic jams and speed limits must have sent up his blood pressure if he did. An unbroken Arab horse and a wilderness would have suited him better.

Apart from being a trainer of distinction, Tom was thought to be an outstanding mathematician when we were boys. Whether the latter is true it is impossible to discover now. Boys like to invest their teachers with what they take to be Einsteinian qualities. He was certainly a very intelligent man but he was unable to take his degree. At different stages during his university studies, usually around examination time, he had to sit near the door of the refectory in Rathfarnham Castle. This was because he would suddenly, through nervousness, find himself unable to swallow, and have to run choking from the room. He could talk very interestingly on any subject, even though he might naturally gravitate to discussing rugby. He liked to consult encyclopaedias in the middle of an argument to show he was correct on a point of historical or literary fact.

Fr Tom had very many devoted friends among the Past, but, almost certainly, some who bore a grudge as well. He seemed to work off his frustrations in sarcasm against “enemies”, and, whom he took to be fools, he did not suffer gladly. The result was that those who were on the outside could not see how the devotion of the others arose. Happily the mystery of life is deep and complicated enough to encompass different types. Tom was either a stone in your shoe or a stone in your oyster; he could not be ignored.

For almost twenty years, 1946-1962, Fr Tom O'Callaghan SJ, was teacher, trainer, sometime assistant disciplinarian in Belvedere. He was moved by the Canonical Visitor to Crescent College Limerick. From what we hear, things were not the same there. He was approaching sixty years of age and his once dominant personality was losing its force. He did not have a reputation he could call on, as the pupils of Crescent had not heard of him before. In a few years he was teaching in a school in London and while there he met his future wife. At what stage he decided to leave the priesthood it is impossible to say.

When they returned to Dublin he took up teaching for a while in St. Conleth's. This did not last very long as his health was disintegrating. During a long and sporadic illness his wife took devoted care of him. He died in June of this year aged 72 years. RIP.

Every Christian life is a sad life. Every Christian life is a failure. A web of disappointments and of goals unachieved. We cannot say, and it is futile to guess, whether some things might have been better if some other things had been otherwise ... We do not know. That is all we can say. We offer our sympathy to his wife, Barbara, May the Lord look mercifully on all of us, and on the soul of Fr. Tom O'Callaghan, one-time Jesuit, sacerdos in aeter num.


O'Donnell, Godfrey, 1939-2020, Romanian Orthodox priest and former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 09 November 1939-14 February 2020

Born: 09 November 1939, Derry, County Derry
Entered: 06 September 1957, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 20 June 1971, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 19 October 1977, Manresa House, Dollymount, Dublin
Died: 14 February 2020, Swords, County Dublin (a Romanian Orthodox priest)

Left Society of Jesus: 1986

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1963 at Chantilly France (GAL S) studying
by 1973 at St Louis MO, USA (MIS) studying

The funeral Mass of Fr Godfrey O'Donnell (80) the only Irishman to be ordained a priest of the Romanian Orthodox Church in Ireland, took place on Monday at St Columba's Church, Blakestown Way, in West Dublin. A total of 28 Romanian Orthodox priests from Europe and Ireland took part in the Mass.

From Derry, Fr O’Donnell died peacefully at his home in Swords last Friday. A Jesuit priest for 28 years, Fr Godfrey left the Catholic priesthood to marry Ruth in 1985, but had grown increasingly drawn to the Orthodox Church.

He was ordained a Romanian Orthodox priest in February 2004 by His Eminence the Metropolitan Iosif in a six-hour service at the chapel in Dublin's Belvedere College.

The ceremony was attended by representatives of the other Orthodox churches, in Ireland, the Catholic Church, the Church of Ireland, the Lutheran Church, the Presbyterian Church, and from the Romanian Embassy in Ireland.

As he explained at the 2004 ordination, “I had to make a choice to let go of my Catholic heritage and to embrace Orthodoxy. It has been a great gift this last four years. I have met so many extraordinary people, very gifted people, great Christians who have also had to give up a lot to come to a strange country like Ireland.”

In 2000, he was instrumental in establishing the first Romanian Orthodox parish in Dublin, based at Leeson Park. It followed contact in 1999 with Paris-based Metropolitan Iosif of the Romanian Orthodox Metropolitanate of Western and Southern Europe.

Fr O’Donnell had been Orthodox representative to the Irish Council of Churches and the Irish Inter Church Meeting, and was chairman of the Dublin Council of Churches for a period. In 2008 he was elected President of the Irish Council of Churches.

In November 2013 he was awarded the accolade of ‘Stavrophore’ by the Romanian Orthodox Church. ‘Stavrophore’ is derived from the Greek stavrophoros, meaning ‘cross–bearer’. It is the highest award bestowed upon married priests in the Romanian Orthodox tradition.

It conferred on Fr O’Donnell the the right to wear a cross in recognition of his work to firmly establish the Romanian Orthodox Church in Ireland and of his long service to the Romanian Orthodox community.

Survived by Ruth, burial took place on Monday afternoon at Dardistown cemetery in north Co Dublin.

It is with great sadness that we share the news of the death of Fr Godfrey O’Donnell, Romanian Orthodox priest and ecumenist, who died at his home in Swords on Friday February 14.

In 2004 Fr Godfrey became the first Irish–born person to be ordained as a priest of the Romanian Orthodox Church. The Derry man had been a Jesuit priest but left the priesthood in 1985. He felt increasingly drawn to the Orthodox Church and was instrumental in establishing the Romanian Orthodox parish in Dublin in 2000. His work for the Romanian Orthodox Church in Ireland was honoured in 2013 when he was awarded the accolade of Stavrophore, the highest award given to married priests in that tradition.

Known for his active ecumenism, he represented the Romanian Orthodox Church on both the of Dublin Council of Churches and the Irish Council of Churches. He was chair of Dublin Council of Churches and became the first representative of the Orthodox traditions to hold the role of president of the Irish Council of Churches from 2012 to 2014.

Paying tribute to Fr Godfrey, Archbishop Michael Jackson recalled a priest of tremendous vitality. “All of us who knew Godfrey recognised his faithfulness to God and rejoiced in his tireless and joyful presentation of the Romanian Orthodox tradition within Irish Christianity. He was always ready and willing to participate in the promotion of a better understanding of faiths and advocate for ecumenism through the Dublin Council of Churches. The sympathies and prayers of all of us in the United Dioceses lie with his wife, Ruth, and the Romanian Orthodox community,” he said

Fr. Godfrey O'Donnell (1939[1] – 14 February 2020) was a priest from County Londonderry, Northern Ireland, in the Romanian Orthodox Church.

From County Londonderry, O'Donnell, was a Jesuit priest for 28 years,[2] who left the order in 1985 to marry Ruth.[3]

Godfrey and his wife Ruth became involved in the Greek Rite church in Arbour Hill in Dublin, and joined the Romanian Orthodox church in 1999.

O'Donnell was asked by the Romanian Orthodox Metropolitan Joseph, based in Paris, to help secure a Romanian Orthodox priest for their community in Ireland.[3] In 2000 Godfrey was instrumental in the establishment of Romanian Orthodox services in Dublin, which began in the Chapel in Belvedere College in 2001.[4] In 2004 O'Donnell became the first Irish-born person to be ordained a Romanian Orthodox priest.[5] He was ordained in the Jesuit Chapel of Belvedere College, where Romanian Orthodox services were held each weekend.

Fr. O'Donnell ministered from The Romanian Orthodox Church based at Christ Church Leeson Park.

O'Donnell was elected President of the Irish Council of Churches in 2008. In 2013 O'Donnell was awarded the accolade of 'Stavrophore' by the Romanian Orthodox Church.[6]

O'Donnell served as head of the Romanian Orthodox Church in Ireland, and attended ecumenical and inter-faith, state services such as the National Day of Commemoration in this capacity.

He died at his home in Swords, Dublin, Ireland, on 14 February 2020, aged 80.[7][8]

O'Donovan, Cornelius P, 1930-2020, former Jesuit priest, teacher

  • Person
  • 17 March 1930-11 November 2020,

Born: 17 March 1930, Glasnevin, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 08 October 1947, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1961, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 11 November 2020, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Left Society of Jesus: 10 December 1976

by 1954 at Berchmanskolleg, Pullach, Germany (GER S) studying
by 1963 at Sentmaringer Münster, Germany (GER I) making Tertianship
by 1966 at St Louis MO, USA (MAR) teaching
by 1974 at Regis Toronto, Canada (CAN S) sabbatical

A eulogy for Cornelius Patrick O’Donovan (17 March 1930 - 11 November 2020)
Shane Hogan, former Headmaster, St.Ignatius College, Riverview
21 November 2020

We are here to celebrate the precious life of Cornelius Patrick O’Donovan’s, or ‘Conn’ as he was more affectionally known.

Conn was an immensely special person to a great number of people from vast walks of life. From a young Irish lad in a big catholic family to a dynamic Jesuit, his adventurous and influential life in Australia is one worth remembering and celebrating. I pray these words are befitting of Conn and the extraordinary legacy that lives on in his family and friends.

In 2003 I was given a book by Daven Day SJ when he was Provincial. Its title was Heroic Leadership. It was an attempt by the author, an ex-Jesuit, to explain why the Jesuits had survived for the past 450 years while empires and successful corporations have fallen by the way side in that time. He put it down to 4 characteristics that he believes have served the Jesuits over that time: self-awareness, heroic deeds, ingenuity, and love.

Does each of these principals not sum up and epitomise this beautiful man’s character and personality and explain how he had such an impact on each person’s life that he touched.

Conn was born on 17 March 1930 in Dublin. The keen-eyed among you will have noticed the significance of this date – it is surprising he was not called Patrick Cornelius! As the second born male, Irish tradition states that he would be named after his paternal
grandfather and father.

His father was the Land Commissioner Inspector at this time but was famously behind the barricades at the Dublin General Post Office, shoulder to shoulder with Collins, Clarke, Connelly and McDermott, in the Easter Rising of 1916. Conn was very proud of this fact.

Conn had his Secondary education at Roscrea College, Tipperary for one year, and spent the remainder at Colaiste Mhuire, Dublin – an Irish-speaking Christian Brothers School. He entered the Society of Jesus on 8 October 1947, joining the Jesuit Novitiate at Emo, near Portarlington, where he spent two years of spiritual formation. In the Novitiate he was encouraged to read widely and to develop an interest in music and the arts, a passion he maintained throughout his life.

Following his time in the Jesuit Novitiate he travelled to Rathfarnham Castle where he studied for four years at the University College Dublin. An exemplary student, Conn pursued a demanding course, taking four subjects in Science and Mathematics. While he certainly could have obtained an impressive degree in Science, Conn’s heart remained in the realm of the humanities, and at the end of his first year, he switched to a degree in Latin and Irish. He would, of course, obtain First Class Honours. From here, Conn travelled to Germany to study Philosophy and upon commencement, greatly impressed the demanding German Jesuit professors, who promptly marked him as someone set to become a specialist in Philosophy.

Conn spent the next two years teaching and perfecting his craft at Belvedere College, Dublin, where his interest and ability in sports came to the fore. He was an excellent teacher, popular with the students and possessed an effortless and kindly control in the classroom and on the playing field. He then moved to Milltown Institute of Theology and Philosophy for four years of Theological Studies. It was Milltown that had a decisive impact on Conn, in large part due to his association with Philip McShane, with whom he forged a personal and intellectual friendship, one that would influence not only the other, but a whole generation of students of Philosophy at the Milltown Institute. His interest in philosophy deepened and matured over these years and the expectations of his German philosophy professors were further realised. After his final year of formation - his tertianship - Conn attended the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome where he obtained a Doctorate in Philosophy which he promptly put to use at the Jesuit St. Louis University in Missouri.

Conn returned home to Ireland where he taught Philosophy for 10 years. As ever, he was popular with colleagues and students, being urbane and gracious as he was. With his Milltown friend, Philip McShane, the pair established a philosophy course grounded in the teachings of the Canadian Jesuit Philosopher, Bernard Lonergan. This decision, however, was not without controversy and painful conflict. The modernisation of religious life was under heavy scrutiny at the time of the change, following the second Vatican Council. Although unknown, many believe that this series of conflicts in the 1960s were what caused Conn to leave the Priesthood and the Jesuits. Conn and the Jesuits remained passionately and eternally in a “benign and mutually appreciative relationship”.

Conn met the love of his life, Paddy, sometime after leaving the Jesuits. Paddy was an Australian nurse whom Conn met while she was travelling through Ireland. Conn was besotted with Paddy. Anything that she wanted, Conn was prepared to deliver. The two
become inseparable and shared many crazy adventures. His immense love for Paddy endured until her passing in 2003. A beautiful send-off was held for Paddy at St Canisius in Potts Point, arranged by Conn’s dear friend, Steve Sinn.

Conn arrived on the doorsteps of St Aloysius College in January 1980. He was looking for a job, as were a number of others who have been part of Jesuit education in Australia for the past 40 years. The first time I met him, Conn was sitting outside Father Bruce’s office waiting to go in and get our classes for the year. At Aloysius, Conn was an immediately hit with staff and students (and Jesuits). He played staff football on a Friday afternoon for many years. I did not realise how old he was at this time, probably 50 or close to it, he was easily one of the best players on the field – a great goalkeeper. Off the field, Conn could also hold his own with a drink.

Conn was an exceptional Latin teacher, Latin being one of eight languages Conn had been taught or taught himself to speak. He was also an exceptional Year Coordinator, earning the love of his students whom he loved in return. One of the reasons for this mutual respect was due to the fact that Conn could not bring himself to use the strap as punishment. He opted instead for a slower, arguably more cruel method, to talk them to death! If this did not work, he would refer them to his assistant, Neil Mushan, to sort out matters more… directly.This discipline method did not work when Helen Ephrums became his new assistant, as she also loved the boys to death.

Conn’s time at Aloysius is wonderfully remembered in comedian Ahn Do’s popular novel, The Happiest Refugee, where Conn’s passion and commitment to fair play saw him rest Ahn late in a Basketball game when Ahn was desperately trying to get to 30 points to win a new pair of basketball boots. When Conn was informed of his accidental actions, he was reported to have said, “Jaysus! Why didn’t you tell me earlier you daft eediot! Ahn, next time out, you’re on!” I can hear him saying it! With his right hand on his forehead.

When I first knew Conn, he was living at St Ignatius’ College in the old Infirmary. After that, he resided at Pearl Beach and travelled each day to St Aloysius is his green Morris Minor. He also for a time lived in a plush flat in Bellevue Hill, however the only piece of property he owned in his life, was an old church in the country which he used as a holiday house. Finally, Conn moved to Riverview and lived in a cottage by First Field for many years, a very happy place with classical music always drifting in the air as you approached.

On his departure from St Aloysius in the mid ‘90s, Conn travelled home to Ireland for a number of years. Paddy had convinced him she wanted to go home to Ireland to live and do a cooking course in France. Ever supportive of her dreams and true to his enduring love, whatever Paddy wanted, Conn was always prepared to deliver. While in Ireland, Conn taught at the Jesuit Belvedere College, Dublin, but both he and Paddy soon realised that with the Celtic Tiger enveloping the nation, Ireland was not the place and home they thought it to be.

Conn returned to Australia, commencing at St Ignatius’ College, Riverview, where he would join a number of us who had left Aloysius to start anew. After Paddy died, I asked Conn to come and live at Riverview. With this, a new amazing stage in his life began: that of a Jesuit, mystic and gypsy. Conn did possibly his best and most influential work while at Riverview. As mentor and confidante to the Headmaster, as well as Latin teacher, Conn spent many an afternoon wasting his time on Jennie Hickey and I - who never completed her homework and was inattentive at times - as he tried to get us through the Year 7 syllabus … year after year.

Conn’s impact on the formation of young Ignatian men and on those he worked with can be summed up by the outpouring of emotional responses on social media on hearing the news of his passing. Among the many moving tributes, here are two such examples of the widespread and lasting influence of Conn’s character.

A wonderful person and a great and enthusiastic 4th XI soccer coach! Profound intellect, humility, insight, depth of faith, simplicity of life, ease of finding joy… Conn’s gift for critical, honest thinking and seeking after truth made a big impact on me and many. I am moved to gratitude for his life. May Conn rest in peace. – James O’Brien

A dear friend and teacher who helped educate the whole person - a wonderful teacher of Ancient Greek who, in the course of teaching the subject, taught you also a good deal of literature - particularly the Irish poets - Latin, Gaelic, German, Philosophy and Theology. A great football coach who insisted on character and fair, firm play. But more, just a caring shepherd of people on their way into broader life. My favourite lessons in Greek were when he would turn up with a poem of Seamus Heaney’s,

because the story of the Trojan wars was also the story of all human struggles. Requiescat in pace, Conn. – Dominic Kelly

At this point, can I especially thank, from all of Conn’s friends and family, the care and love shared by the dozen or so girlfriends who spoilt him and gave him a graceful entry to heaven over the past months and were true friends to the end, especially you Christine, you have been an angel by his side.

In the Book of Isiah there is the story of the passing of a close friend of Cicero and when his wife asks him why do you weep so?

“The earth is poorer” said Cicero. “It has lost a good man, and we cannot afford it”

The earth will be a poorer place without Conn, at a time when good men are hard to find. Conn touched each and every one of us and has left us with memories we will cherish forever. Conn loved his Irish heritage, and in particular Irish poets. Conn and Paddy attached this poem to a birthday card they sent me in 2002. When you read it, hear Conn’s words in your head and heart.

27 November 2020

In Memory of Cornelius Patrick O’Donovan (17 March 1930 – 11 November 2020)

Our colleague and friend, Conn O’Donovan, was a regular attendee, participant and presenter at our biennial Australian Lonergan Workshop. He had a particular expertise and interest in the philosophy of learning.

He will remembered as a passionate and compassionate man, a lover of his wife Paddy, a scholar and a teacher,. He will also be remembered for this love of music and Lindt 85% dark chocolate.

His funeral service can be viewed (until 20th May 2021) at: A hard copy of the eulogy by Shane Hogan, former headmaster at St.Ignatius College, Riverview is available to download here. This includes a little of life-story.

In Lonergan circles, he will be remembered an educator, a reformer of philosophy and theology courses and a translator and interpreter of one of Lonergan’s important contributions to theology.


Throughout his life, Conn was an educator at various institutions – Belvedere College, Dublin; St.Louis University, Missouri; and Milltown Institute of Theology and Philosophy.

Over the past 40 years, Conn taught at St.Aloysius College, Milson’s Point and St.Ignatius College, Riverview (in Sydney, Australia). He is particularly noted for his course on “Wonder about Wonder: an introduction to philosophy” which aimed to have students grasp their own native wonder.


In the early 1960s, Conn worked closely with Phil McShane and others in reforming philosophy and theology courses at the Jesuit Milltown Institute, Dublin. In a 2003 article in the Journal of Macrodynamic Analysis reflecting on the first forty years of Phil McShane, Conn recalled the challenge and the difficulties they faced:

There was considerable discontent, and even cynicism, among those Jesuit students, whether Lonergan inspired or not, who looked on theology as something more than just a canonical prerequisite for ordination, or who had already achieved considerable success in some other field. Many of them simply went along with the system, mastering the matter presented and producing it, on request, at examination time; others registered a kind of protest by pursuing private interests as much as possible; those inspired by Lonergan tended increasingly to raise questions in class in a manner that challenged their professors’ authority, at times, unfortunately, with a crude appeal to the authority of Lonergan. We did not know then that we were living through the final years of a system that Lonergan later described as hopelessly antiquated but not yet demolished, that what was happening at Milltown was happening all over the world, and that the upheaval that was soon to come would affect much more than the traditional seminary courses in philosophy and theology.

Translator and interpreter

In the early 1970s, Conn undertook the long and arduous task of translating, from Latin into English, the first part of the first volume of Bernard Lonergan’s De Deo Trino. It was published in 1976 by Darton Longman & Todd as The Way to Nicea: The Dialectical Development of Trinitarian Theology and examined the dialectical process by which the dogma of the Trinity developed in the first four centuries. The Way to Nicea was the first translation of Lonergan’s Latin writings to be published.

Lonergan was always reluctant to have any of his Latin texts translated because he wrote them in Latin for a very specific audience, I.e., the students from 17 nations at the Gregorian, as well the Holy Office who had to approve all texts used at pontifical universities. He said that he would have written it “differently” in English or French.
Having read Conn’s translation of the first part of de Deo Trino he thought it excellent and agreed to have it published as The Way to Nicea.The book includes an important introduction by Conn in which he sets out to:

survey the content and indicate the structure of the whole two-volume work [De Deo Trino] of which the part translated constitutes one sixth,

Give an account of Lonergan’s academic courses on the Trinity, from 1945 to 1964, with some references to other work in progress at the time of these courses,

Give a brief history of Lonergan’s writings on the Trinity during his years in Rome culminating in the 1964 De Deo Trino,

Discuss the importance for Lonergan of trinitarian theology as the area in which (mainly) he worked out his method in theology

Comment on Lonergan’s enduring involvement with and contribution to trinitarian theology as a topic of the greatest importance within theology

Suggest some reasons why Lonergan has been so far unwilling to release for publication in translation any more than this one part of De Deo Trino and why he has released even as much as he has

Make a few comments on the tasks of translation itself.

O'Farrell, William, b.1843-, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 04 June 1843-

Born: 04 June 1843, County Limerick
Entered: 05 October 1860, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 1876, France
Final Vows: 15 August 1880

Left Society of Jesus: 1891

Educated at Crescent College SJ

by 1863 at Roehampton, England (ANG) studying
by 1864 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying Theology 1
by 1873 at Laval France (FRA) studying

O'Flanagan, Dermot, 1901-1972, Roman Catholic Bishop of Juneau and former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 1909 March 190101-31 December 1932

Born: 09 March 1901, Lahinch, County Clare
Entered: 04 October 1917, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 27 August 1929, Valkenburg, Netherlands
Died: 31 December 1932, La Mesa, CA, USA

Left Society of Jesus: 12 December 1932 (from Clongowes - Prefect)

Consecrated Bishop of Juneau, Alaska, USA 03 October 1951 to 19 June 1968

by 1927 at Valkenburg, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) studying
by 1932 at Petworth Sussex (ANG) health

Irish Province News 48th Year No 1 1973

Obituary :

Bishop Dermot O’Flanagan (1901-1972)

Perigrinare Pro Christo
The phrase describes what through the ages has been the most distinctive feature of Irish Catholicism.

One bright June morning just fifty years ago eight young men manning, not an outrigger but a weathered fishing boat, dropped with the tide down Killary Fjord, not as yet seeking the ocean, but trailing a line for that most unsporting of fish - the mackerel, and making for a little beach at the foot of Mweelrea and the last swim and the last picnic of a good holiday, They came from all over the four provinces and half a dozen schools - ‘Rock, BCD, CBS, CWC, and Mungret, but they had been working together for two or three busy years and were a close-knit group - “A Band of Brothers”.

Very soon they would separate never to foregather again this side of the grave. On that June day in 1923, it is unlikely that any of them had a notion how wide their dispersal would be: Maurice Dowling to Zambia, Tom Perrot to Perth, D. Donnelly to Hong Kong and India, Tom Johnston to New Zealand and Quensland, Jim Brennan to Rhodesia, two would settle in Ireland but not before they had reached Capetown and Japan, one, Dermot Flanagan, would go further to the Arctic Circle in Alaska and to San Diego on the border of Mexico, His death then in California is mourned by old friends and companions in the four other Continents, for Bishop O'Flanagan was a friend and companion not likely to be forgotten, loyal, hard-working, cheerful, simple, enterprising, sanguine and unsefish.

What might be called the Belvedere Families have in successive generations played an important part in the school's life and work. Four, five or more boys, long-service pupils, follow one another in an unbroken line, and for a decade or more make their own special impression on school life, so that their contemporaries recognise those years as almost proprietory, belonging to them much as historians may write of the Tudor, Stuart or Georgian epochs. Such families were the Gaffneys, the Troddyns, the Quinns and not least the O'Flanagans - Cyril, Aiden, Louis, Paul, Dermot and Frank, following one another so that the school in their period never lacked one of the O'Flanagans to maintain tradition. It cannot have been without significance that this period covered the false dawn of Home Rule, the Anglo-Irish literary revival, the great strikes, the first World War, the 1916 Rising and its aftermath,

In 1917 Dermot entered the Irish Noviceship, taking his Vows in 1919. Ill health prevented him starting the usual studies and instead he joined the Clongowes Community; after an interval, however, he was to complete his Philosophy in Milltown Park, returning to Clongowes in 1923, to prefect and teach. His Theological studies were made at Valkenburg, where he was Ordained in 1929, Again ill health led to a postponement of Tertianship, and he returned to Clongowes as Higher Line Prefect. During a serious epidemic in the summer of 1933, he added to his work - first the duties of Minister, and then on the eve of the Intermediate Examinations those of Prefect of Studies. It was too much and the breakdown which might have been expected followed,
After a short rest in the “Sleeping Beauty” woods of Emo, a complete change of work and surroundings were decided on, and he volunteered for work in a parish in Alaska.

A couple of years later he became P.P, of Anchorage, where he built the parish church and remained until his consecration in 1951 as first Bishop of Juneau,

The Alaska to which he went was still to some degree that which European legend of the Gold Rush made popular. There were pioneering trips by dog sleigh to remote Eskimo country, but in Dermot's lifetime the territory became the 50th State of the United States, and its treasures in oil and meal hurried it along the road to modernization.

la 1969 in his 68th year he resigned his Bishopric, leaving the country which owed so much to half his lifetime of apostolic labour. In San Diego despite his failing health he continued to accomplish much pastoral work, until at last the ill health which had overshadowed all his manhood could no longer be resisted.

In San Diego seven Bishops including his Metropolitan Dr Tadhg Manning concelebrated his Requiem Mass. The remains were then flown to a similar Memorial Service in Anchorage, and fittingly laid to rest there in the Church, of which it may truly be said he was the Founder.

In that far off summer of 1923, Dermot and a companion cycled from Leenane through the Erriff Valley and climbed Croagh Patrick from the steep eastern side on a sweltering day

There was no one on the summit and after a brief visit to the little chapel, which, surprisingly, was open, they remained admir ing the view of the Islands of Clew Bay when they perceived three people, who had ascended by the pilgrims way; a woman on that torrid day dressed in a black skirt which almost touched the ground, was accomplished by her two sons, a very young man and a boy of 12. While they were in the chapel the Jesuits planned to photo the little group when they emerged, Soon they were joined by the young people but there was no sign of the mother. Perhaps thinking of the long way home to Louisbourg and the Delphi Valley, they questioned the younger boy. “Does your mother often stay long in the Church?” “Oh! Yes, often”. "Yes,, but what is she praying for?" "How would I know?" "Well, I know, I'm sure she is asking God for a vocation for the Priesthood for you.'
Almost in the shadow of Croagh Patrick lies the parish in which that boy worked in God's Service for many years, subse quently, while on the far side of the continent across the Atlantic which lay at his door, laboured the Priest and Bishop who had foreseen the younster's Vocation,

To Bishop Dermot's brothers and sister we offer our sincere sympathy.

Robert Dermot O'Flanagan (March 9, 1901 – December 31, 1972) was an Irish-born American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church who served as the first bishop of the Diocese of Juneau in Alaska from 1951 to 1968.

Early life
Robert O'Flanagan was born on March 9, 1901, in Lahinch, County Clare in Ireland. In 1908, he entered Belvedere College in Dublin.[1] After graduating in 1971, he entered St Stanislaus College, a Jesuit novitiate in Tullabeg, County Offaly. In 1920, the Jesuits sent O'Flanagan to the Netherlands to study at Ignatius College in Valkenburg.[2][3]

O'Flanagan was ordained to the priesthood for the Jesuit Order by Bishop Laurentius Schrijnen in Valkenburg on August 27, 1929.[4] Returning to Ireland, he taught at Clongowes Wood College in County Kildare from 1930 to 1932.[1] In 1932, dissatisfied with the Jesuit Order, he decided to leave it. At a eucharistic conference in Dublin, O'Flanagan met Reverend Patrick J. O'Reilly, a missionary from Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. After speaking with O'Reilly, he decided to go to Alaska on a three-month mission. [3]

Arriving in Juneau, Alaska, in January 1933, O'Flanagan was assigned by Bishop Joseph Crimont as a pastor of a parish in Seward, Alaska, to fill in for a priest on leave. Arriving in Seward, he received a warm welcome from both Catholic and non-Catholic residents. Their hospitality encouraged him to stay in Alaska permanently.[2] Later in 1933, O'Flanagan was assisting Reverend Dane, the pastor at Holy Family Parish in Anchorage. Dane wanted to take a medical leave and asked O'Flanagan to substitute at Holy Family. O'Flanagan would remain at Holy Family until 1951, eventually becoming pastor there. For 18 years, he would travel once a month to Seward, 120 miles from Anchorage, to minister to the parish there. [1][3]

In 1936, O'Flanagan headed a civic group to establish a new hospital in Anchorage. The existing hospital, built by Alaska Railroad in 1915 primarily for its employees, was reaching its limits due to the increased population of the city. After obtaining local funding, O'Flanagan persuaded the Catholic Sisters of Providence to staff and operate the new hospital for the general public. Providence Hospital opened on June 29, 1939.[3] O'Flanagan became a member of the operating committee for the first USO center in Anchorage. On November 30, 1943, O'Flanagan became a naturalized American citizen.[3]

Bishop of Juneau
On July 9, 1951, O'Flanagan was appointed the first bishop of the newly erected Diocese of Juneau by Pope Pius XII.[4] He received his episcopal consecration on October 3, 1951, from Bishop Francis Gleeson, with Bishops Charles White and Joseph Dougherty serving as co-consecrators.[4] O'Flanagan attended all four sessions of the Second Vatican Council in Rome between 1962 and 1965.

O'Flanagan's early resignation as bishop of the Diocese of Juneau due to poor health was accepted by Pope Paul VI on June 19, 1968.[4] He soon left Juneau to live at a Catholic retirement home in La Mesa, California. Dermot O'Flanagan died in La Mesa on December 31, 1972.[3]

(1) Curtis, Georgina Pell (1961). The American Catholic Who's Who. Vol. XIV. Grosse Pointe, Michigan: Walter Romig.

(2) Bagoy, John. "Fr. Demont O'Flanagan and Holy Family Church". Holy Family Cathedral History. Archived from the original on 28 October 2009.

(3) “O'Flanagan, Father Robert Dermot | Alaska History”. Retrieved 5 May 2022.

(4) "Bishop Robert Dermot O'Flanagan".

O'Flanagan, Father Robert Dermot

1901-1972 | Catholic Priest of Holy Family Church, Anchorage (1933-1951), and Bishop of the Diocese of Juneau (1951-1968)

The Path to Priesthood
Robert Dermot O’Flanagan was born on March 9, 1901, at Castle D’Arcy, Lahinch, County Clare, Ireland. He always used only Dermot as a first name.

After early schooling at Belvedere College, Dublin, a preparatory school for boys in Ireland, from 1908-1917, Father O’Flanagan entered a Jesuit novitiate at Tullabeg, County Offaly, Ireland, remaining there for three years. He did his theological studies at St. Ignatius College, Valkenburg, Limburg, Holland, and was ordained as a Jesuit priest there in 1929. From 1930 to 1932, he taught at a Jesuit secondary school for boys, Clongowes Wood College, in County Kildare.1

The year 1932 was a turning point in Father O’Flanagan’s life. In June, he left the Society of Jesus Jesuits, but remained a priest. He attended a Eucharistic Congress in Dublin. Among those attending was Father Patrick J. O’Reilly, S.J., a veteran missionary of the Pacific Northwest and Alaska. As a result of hearing O’Reilly, Father O’Flanagan volunteered for service in Alaska. He was sent to America on the S.S. Manhattan, arriving in New York on December 15, 1932.

In January 1933, Father O’Flanagan arrived in Juneau. He was met by Joseph R. Crimont, S.J., Vicar Apostolic of Alaska, who assigned him a temporary mission, the parish of Seward. He was warmly welcomed by the people of Seward and wrote back to Bishop Crimont: “. . . people were falling over themselves trying to help me and make me feel welcome at home—the non-Catholics as much as the Catholics. It was worthwhile leaving Ireland for that alone.”2

After a short time in Seward, Father O’Flanagan was sent to Anchorage and appointed as pastor of Holy Family Parish in July 1933.3 He was sent to relieve the ailing pastor of Holy Family Parish, Father Godfrey Dane, for a “temporary stint,” but the appointment became permanent. O’Flanagan served as priest for both Anchorage and Seward for eighteen years. Once a month he would travel to Seward to care for the parishioners there, then return to his duties in Anchorage.

Father Louis L. Renner, S.J., in Alaskana Catholica: A History of the Catholic Church in Alaska (2005), said this of Father O’Flanagan: “It did not take Father O’Flanagan long to become a well-known figure in Anchorage. His reserve, soft-spoken words, and beguiling Irish ways opened doors and hearts to him and to his message. Frequently he visited the sick in the Railroad Hospital. On a winter day, a common sight was that of Father ‘O’ shoveling snow off the rectory porch or church sidewalks. He tended the church and rectory furnaces, and his dusty coveralls became him no less than did his black cassock.”4

Parishioners recalled Father O’Flanagan was the most remembered of all priests in early Anchorage. His first altar servers were John Bagoy and Gene Pastro. Bagoy said he was known for “his thick Irish brogue and his outgoing personality.”5 Bagoy said that the “ladies of the parish were worried about him not getting enough to eat or eating the right food.”6 His diet seemed to consist of coffee and sweet rolls. They devised a system whereby he ate dinner with various members of the church on successive nights.

Establishment of Providence Hospital (1939)
Father O’Flanagan participated in local activities. He broached the subject of a new community hospital in Anchorage to Bishop Joseph R. Crimont, S.J., Vicar Apostolic of Alaska, and to the Sisters of Providence. In the summer of 1936, O’Flanagan became the leading member of a group of individuals with an interest in health care who actively lobbied the Sisters of Providence to establish a Sisters’ hospital in Anchorage. In the spring and summer of 1937, prominent citizens of Anchorage joined Father O’Flanagan’s lobbying effort, including Austin E. “Cap” Lathrop and physicians I.S. Egan, Howard G. Romig, Joseph R. Romig, and August S. Walkowski.7

In 1915, the Alaska Engineering Commission had made Anchorage their construction headquarters for the Alaska Railroad and had funded several new facilities, including the railroad hospital. The two-story, fifty-bed hospital opened on December 1, 1916. The Alaska Railroad hospital was “a severely plain, white frame building, with a simple pitched roof, perched between A and B Streets on a steep slope overlooking Ship Creek.”8 Although the hospital initially provided satisfactory services, as the Anchorage community expanded, it failed to keep pace with the growing needs of local residents.9 Colonel Otto Ohlson, General Manager of the Alaska Railroad, as part of his attempts to reduce the railroad’s deficit, made it more difficult for the local community to use the railroad hospital. In 1934, he began negotiations with the Sisters of Providence about operating a hospital in Anchorage and taking over the railroad’s patients.10 On June 26, 1935, an editorial in the Anchorage Daily Times stated: “The Anchorage hospital is overflowing with patients. A much larger hospital with more conveniences is sorely needed.”11

There was widespread public support for the establishment of a Sisters of Providence hospital in Anchorage. In 1937, the Catholic Sisters of Providence accepted the responsibility of building a new hospital. The Ninth and L Street Providence Hospital was formally opened under Sister Stanislaus of Jesus, the first Superior for the Sisters of Providence, in Anchorage, on June 29, 1939.12 Through Father O’Flanagan’s efforts and those of others, Anchorage and its hospital were better prepared for an era of sustained growth that would transform the community into Alaska’s largest city and commercial center.

The former “L” Street Providence Hospital building still stands at its original location and is used by the Anchorage Department of Health and Human Services. With the city population increasing rapidly, and with the closure of the Alaska Railroad hospital, even the new hospital quickly proved inadequate. Forty-five acres of land for a much larger, modern hospital was acquired near Goose Lake in 1955. The new Providence Hospital was opened in October 1962.13

United Service Organization (USO)
Father O’Flanagan served on the first Committee of Management for Anchorage’s first United Service Organization (USO) headquarters, which was located in a large log cabin at the corner of 5th Avenue and G Street. Opened on September 1, 1941, the Anchorage USO was a welcome place for military service members and their guests, and offered recreational activities, entertainment, socializing, and educational and spiritual services. Through the efforts of the Anchorage civilian population, local military authorities, and the New York USO, a larger, better equipped building was completed in February 1942. The large log structure, capable of holding five hundred people, was on a site leased from the Anchorage Post of the American Legion.14 In addition to becoming firmly involved in Anchorage’s community life through good works, Father O’Flanagan became a U.S. citizen on November 30, 1943.15

Holy Family Church
When Father O’Flanagan arrived in Anchorage, the Holy Family Church was a small wooden structure with a rectory. Father O’Flanagan began raising funds for a new building but it was a slow process during the Great Depression. In the mid-1930s, there was already talk about replacing the small, wooden church. World War II halted O’Flanagan’s drive to build a new, more substantial structure, to accommodate the increasing numbers attending. After the war, a drive to build the church was renewed and construction proceeded slowly as funds were raised. In 1946, construction began on the present church, Holy Family Cathedral (formerly, Holy Family Church), located on the corner of 5th Avenue and H Street. On December 14, 1947, the unfinished basement was ready enough for O’Flanagain to accommodate over two hundred people for the first mass. The one-story church, ornamented with geometric lines, has a square two-story bell tower at the front corner. The church was designed by Seattle architect Augustine A. Porreca in the Romanesque Revival style. In October 1948, the white cement exterior of the building was completed. The parish was able to use the main church, but the interior was not completed until 1952. In 1968, Holy Family Church was recognized as an archdiocesan cathedral.16

Becomes First Bishop of Juneau (1951)
On June 28, 1951, Pope Pius XII established the Diocese of Juneau.17 The Catholic Church recognized that the expanding population of Alaska warranted creating a bishop’s post in the Territory. Father O’Flanagan was ordained and installed as the first bishop of the Diocese of Juneau. He was consecrated as bishop in Anchorage on October 4, 1951, and formally installed on October 7, 1951 in the Cathedral of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He celebrated his first mass as bishop in Juneau on October 7, 1951.

Upon his departure from Anchorage, the Anchorage Daily Times editorialized: “His friendliness and humility won him an immediate spot in the hearts of all people. He extended his three-month visit until it ran into years. His flock prospered and grew under his leadership. The magnificent new Church of the Holy Family will ever be a monument in concrete to the inspiration and spiritual leadership he gave.”18

The new Diocese of Juneau was comprised of 70,800 square miles and included southcentral and southeastern Alaska. The remainder of Alaska continued to be administered as a Vicariate Apostolic in the newly created Archdiocese of Seattle. By 1961, the Diocese of Juneau consisted of eleven parishes, fifteen missions, four schools, and four hospitals. There were ten diocesan priests and five Jesuit missionaries to serve the estimated 20,000 Catholics. 19

Bishop O’Flanagan witnessed Governor Mike Stepovich’s swearing in at Fairbanks on June 8, 1957,20 and officiated at Representative Anthony J. “Tony” Dimond’s funeral in Anchorage on June 1, 1953.21 He visited many of the military installations throughout the state and accompanied various Catholic dignitaries on their tours of Alaska.

Bishop O’Flanagan traveled outside of Alaska to various Catholic gatherings. On July 15, 1959, he had an audience in Rome with Pope John XXIII.22 In September 1964 it was announced that he would attend the Vatican Ecumenical Council called by Pope Paul VI.23 In 1960, O’Flanagan gave the baccalaureate sermon at Carroll College in Montana and was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree by the college.24

In August 1968, O’Flanagan retired as bishop for reasons of health. He retired to a Catholic retirement home in La Mesa, California, where he died on December 31, 1972.25 He was buried in the Catholic plot of Anchorage’s Angelus Memorial Park Cemetery.

Owens, Gerald, 1886-, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • b 26 December 1886

Born: 26 December 1886, Dublin City, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1903, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1919, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows 02 February 1923, Leuven, Belgium

Left Society of Jesus: 10 February 1926

Older Brother of William (Gerry) Owens - RIP 1963

by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1922 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1923 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1912 in Australia - Regency at Xavier College, Melbourne

Reilly, Conor S, 1930-2012, former Jesuit priest, chemist, professor

  • Person
  • 04 May 1930-20 May 2012

Born: 04 May 1930, Cork City, County Cork / Dundrum, Dublin, County Dublin
Entered: 06 September 1947, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1960, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February1966, St Ignatius, Lusaka, Zambia
Died: 20 May 2012, Enstone, Oxfordshire, England

Left Society of Jesus: 25 February 1972

Transcribed HIB to ZAM 03 December 1969

by 1964 at McQuaid, Rochester NY, USA (BUF) studying
by 1965 North American Martyrs, Auriesvill NY USA (BUF) making Tertianship

Sall, Andrew Fitzjohn, 1624-1682, scholar and former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 29 November 1624-07 April 1682

Born: 29 November 1624, Cashel, County Tipperary
Entered: 08 November 1641, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain (CAST)
Ordained: 1648/9
Final Vows: 08 September 1658
Died: 07 April 1682, Dublin, County Dublin

Left Society of Jesus: 17 May 1674

Nephew of James Sall - RIP 1646; cousin of Andrew Fitzbennet Sall, RIP - 1686; Uncle of Stephen Sall - RIP 1722

Francis Finegan SJ Biographical Dictionary 1598-1773

Andrew Sall

According to most historians, Andrew Sall was the “Provincial” of the Jesuits who became a Protestant! here happened to be two comntemporary Irish Jesuit cousins. Society correspondence distinguishes between the two : Andrewas Sall Benedicti and Andreas Sall Joannis. Thes names, are, since Father Hogan’s time, rendered : Andrew Fitzbennet Sall and Andrew Fitzjohn Sall. The form FutzBennet has contemporary warrant outside the Society. I have not yet met with the form FitzJohn in contemporary documents.

The reader wikll be able to distinguish between the two and make up his mind that the Superior of the Mission did not apostasise.


Andrew Fitzjohn Sall

he was born in Cashel November 29, 1624, and he studied Philosophy for two years before he entered the Society at Villagarcía on November 8, 1640.

After his Noviceship he completed his Philosophy (the sources do not state where) and taught Humaniteis for two years at the Jesuit College of Compostella, he entered on his Theological studies in 1645 at the College of St AMbrose, Valladolid, and was ordained Priest there 1648/1649. Whether he made his tertianship at the end of his studies is uncertain.

By October 9, 1650, he was already Rector of the Irish College, Salamanca, and remained in office there until at least May 25, 1652. While at Salamanca he lectured in Controversial Theollgy. His next assignmant after Salamanca was that of Operarius at Oviedo (1655) and Pamplona (1658), where he was teaching Philosophy. Two years later he was teaching Philosophy or Theology at the College of Palencia, and was still, for all we know, at Palencia when he was recalled to the Irish Mission in 1664. He exercised his ministry in his native Cashel. Before he returned from Spain he had been admitted to the ranks of the solemnly professed of the Society on September 8, 1658.

In Cashel he proved himself an able Preacher, and is described in the Catalogues of 1666 as In confiutandis Jansenistis et heterodoxis potens. The General, however, in a letter of October 12, 1669 to the Superior of the Mission, Father Francis White, comunicated his apprehensiosn with regard to Fitzjohn Sall; “Keep Andrew Sall junior to his duty, and make him follow the example of Father Sall senior”.

It is a matter of general knowledge that Sall apostasised in the Church of St John, Cashel, on May 17, 1674. The following Jul 5, he preached before the Lord Lieutenant and Council a sermon in Christ Church, Dublin, giving his reasons for entering the established Protestant Church in Ireland.

His later history is of no concern to the Society, it has been dealt with in varius articles and pamphlets. It is enough to state here that the General issued directives that while members of the Irish Mission might answeer Sall’s doctrinal errors, no word should be used against him, likely to confirm him in his obduracy. The General hoped against hope that Sall would return to the Church.

He died unexpectedly in Dublin, April 7, 1862, and was buried at St Patrick’s Cathedral. Of his unhappy end, news was communicated by Archbishop John Brennan to Propaganda on May 1, 1682:-

Ne mese prossimo passato mori in Dublino Andrea Sll gesuita della diocesi Casselense, apostata dela fede. Si dice che volesse l’assistenza d’un sacerdote alla morte, ma non gli riusci, morendo subitamente.

(The article on Sall in the DNB (by R Bagwell) is quite untrustworthy so far as concerns Sall’s career in the Society. Foley, surprisingly, translates Andrew Fitzbennet Sall from Liège to Spain to make him Rector at Salamanca. he doesn’t make him leave the Church, however. It is to Hogan’s credit, in spite of the fact that he worked very mucg at second-hand and leaned heavily on Foley, that he keeps distinct the careers of the two Andrews.)

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
F. Andrew Sall - This unfortunate man was born at Cashell, in 1612, and at the age of 23 joined the Society in the English Province. In 1642 he was studying the fourth year of Theology at Liege College. Re turning to Ireland, he so conducted himself as to he reported to the General of the Order, by Pere Verdier, who had met him in the course of his Visitation at Cashell, as “valde bonus et candidi animi”. When the Parliamentary supplanted the Royal Authority in Ireland, and many of the Regular and Secular Clergy fled from their savage persecutors, F. Sall remained behind, and did good service to Religion, chiefly at Waterford. But, at length, he was hunted out by the Priest Catchers From his own letter I learn, that after saying Mass, he was apprehended on the 22nd of January 1658, in the house of a respectable widow in Watetford. After thirteen months imprisonment, he was discharged from jail at the intercession of the Portuguese Ambassador; but condemned to perpetual exile. He reached Nantz in June, 1659 and was certainly there with F Thomas Quin on the 24th of February, 1660. Subsequently he went to Spain; and on his return to Ireland in 1663 was appointed Superior to his Brethren. This promotion, I fear, turned his head. A letter of F. Nicholas Netterville, a Jesuit of superior merit, to Fr. J. P. Oliva, dated Amiens, the 8th of February, 1667, satisfies me that F. Sall was then an altered man. No one becomes wicked on a sudden; and F Sall must have resisted many graces and warnings, before he publicly abjured the Catholic Faith in his native City, on the 17th of May, 1674. F. Stephen Rice, the Superior in Ireland, after stating to the said General the joy afforded to the Irish Mission by the erection of the new Seminary at Poitiers, observes, that their joy was clouded by the fall of this Brother, the first instance of apostacy of an Irish Jesuit. He adds that F. Sall had grown weary of the vows of poverty - had studied self-ease - had been addicted to vain glory, and much too fond of popular applause. Heresy showered on the miserable old man a profusion of titles and Church Preferments, of all which death deprived him, on the 6th of April, 1682. “Si Sal infatuatuin fuerit, &c.” If the salt have lost its savour, it is good for nothing, but to be cast out, and trodden under the foot of men. Yet in Peter Walsh he found an Advocate, if not an Admirer.

We may remark, that Harris’ account of this poor Renegade may, in many respects, be refuted by original documents, now extant.
A letter to me (Oliver) from the learned William Talbot Esq, dated Rool=klands, Wexford, 12 April, 1824, says “The Renegade Sall, in his last moments, called for a Cath clergyman, but none were allowed to see him”.


Sall, Andrew Fitzjohn

Contributed by
McCaughey, Terence

Sall, Andrew Fitzjohn (1624–82), scholar and sometime Jesuit, was born into an Old English family in the city of Cashel, Co. Tipperary; nothing is known of his parents. More than five Jesuits bore the name Sall (Sál, Sale). With such a background it is not surprising to find the young Andrew Fitzjohn Sall setting off in 1638 to study in Spain. He was to be there for seventeen years. His period on the staff of the college at Numacia and Villagarcia was probably routine. But not so his appointment to Pamplona, where he became advisor to El Conde de San Stephano and made his first acquaintance with Bishop Nicholas French (qv). He became rector of the Irish College in 1652 and was professor of controversial theology. An intention to change the direction of his career is suggested by the fact that he was serving as a pastoral substitute in Oviedo in 1655. Three years later, however, he was back in Pamplona teaching.

He returned to Ireland not later than 1665, and is not to be confused with his older cousin, and namesake, the superior of the order. As late as 12 October 1669 the general of the order in a letter says: ‘Keep Andrew Sall junior to his duty and make him follow the example of Fr Sall senior’, i.e. his cousin. The Ireland to which he returned was riven with the controversy associated with the loyal remonstrance of the Franciscan Peter Walsh (qv) and others, into which he readily entered. Association with the protestant archbishop Thomas Price (qv) aroused in him many misgivings about aspects of Roman catholic doctrine and practice. Later he acknowledged that he entertained the thought of separation from the Roman catholic church but resolved to spend the remnant of his days ‘retired and unknown to prepare better for the long day of eternity’ (Sall, True catholic and apostolic faith, preface). Later he prepared a paper, not for publication, which ‘dropped from me and fell into the hands of some’ (ibid.) who concluded that he had already become a protestant minister. The exchange of letters that took place between Fr Sall and Fr Stephen Rice in Dundalk is a sad one, Fr Rice offering to make amends for any offence so that ‘union at least of Christianity if not of religion may be entire among us’ (ibid.). For a variety of reasons the breach was not healed.

Sometime in the summer of 1674 Andrew Sall took up residence in TCD. Here he prepared and successfully defended his DD thesis. Here too he came under the protection of Dr John Fell (1625–86), who facilitated the work of scripture translation into various languages then being undertaken in Oxford. In July 1675 Sall took refuge in Oxford, where he remained till 1680. He saw no less than three books of a theological and polemical nature through the press during this period, but it can be no accident that on his return to Ireland he was drawn into translation work.

Sall's return to Ireland was prompted by a desire to assist Robert Boyle (qv) and his sister in their various translation activities. But one last activity he had to leave unfinished was the publication of the translation of the Old Testament by Murtagh King (qv) (Muircheartach Ó Cionga) and Séamas de Nógla (James Nangle), which had been made under the aegis of William Bedell (qv) in the 1630s. The translation had been rescued and preserved by Denis Sheridan (qv) (Donnchadh Ó Sioradáin), a protégé of Bedell, by whom it was given to Henry Jones (qv), bishop of Meath. Sall had already seen the text at Jones's house, and he expressed the view that ‘the Irish version of the Old Testament should be revised’. On the question of register, for instance, he had this to say: ‘This much in general I shall insinuate, that if I were fit to be a translator, of two ends men may aim at in such a work, the one of getting the credit of skill in the primitive ancient Irish, the other of benefiting common readers by expressions now in use, I would choose the latter . . .’ When he first came to examine the manuscript, Sall discovered it to be ‘a confused heap’, had it rebound, and hoped ‘to make up a complete Old Testament with the help of God and Mr Higgin’, i.e. Pól Ó hUigínn (qv), the Irish lecturer at Trinity College. He goes on to speak of what a labour it ‘will be to draw up a clear copy of the whole’.

Sall worked at the text of Bedell's Old Testament during the early months of 1682, and by 7 February he reported that eight chapters of Genesis had been written out from the manuscript ‘in very fair letter as clear as any print’. The scribe Mr Mullan, a bachelor of physic, had agreed to the rate of eleven pence a sheet, with the acquiescence of Dr Narcissus Marsh (qv), provost of Trinity College, and Ó hUigínn. Mullan supplied the first transcriptions under Sall's supervision. He also stayed at Sall's house, and Dr Sall says of himself that he would lay aside other duties so as to attend to this work. Actually he had just over two months left; he never returned to his other work, nor did he finish this work either. But for the time that was left he threw himself into it, both the work on the text and the administration of a subscription list.

In the course of all this Andrew Sall discovered – rather to his surprise at first, it would seem – that the project of making the scriptures available in Irish, and the scheme of proselytisation of which it was an essential instrument, were actually opposed by some within the protestant camp, while others remained at least ambivalent. ‘One of them had the gallantry to tell me in my face, and at my own table, that while I went about to gain the Irish (to God, I mean), I should lose the English.’

From November 1680 till his death (5 April 1682) he lived in Oxmanstown on the north bank of the River Liffey in Young's Castle (Michael Hunter and Edward B. Davis (ed.), The works of Robert Boyle (14 vols, 1999–2000), v, 608).

More information on this entry is available at the National Database of Irish-language biographies (

The doleful fall of Andrew Sall, a Jesuit of the fourth vow, from the Roman Catholick apostolic faith, lamented by his constant friend, Nicholas French (Douai, 1674); The unerring and unerrable church; or, An answer to a sermon preached by Mr Andrew Sall, formerly a Jesuit and now a minister of the protestant church, written by I. S. (1675); Andrew Sall, True catholic and apostolic faith, maintained in the Church of England . . . (1676); id., A sermon preached at Christ-Church in Dublin before the lord lieutenant and council, July 5, 1674; Michael Hunter, Antonio Clericuzio, and Lawrence M. Principe (ed.), The correspondence of Robert Boyle (6 vols, 2001)

Smyth, Kevin P, 1909-1993, former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 24 September 1909-1993

Born: 24 September 1909, Dublin City, County Dublin
Entered: 01 September 1926, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1938, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1944, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 1993, Paris, France

Left Society of Jesus: 23 March 1964

Early education at CBS Synge Street, Dublin

by 1933 at Vals, France (TOLO) studying
by 1936 at Valkenburg, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) studying

Interfuse No 76 : Christmas 1993


Kevin Smyth – former Jesuit priest (1909-1993)

Kevin studied Classics in UCD, finishing with a brilliant MA thesis on Wemer Jaeger's distinction between practical (phrone sis) and theoretical (sophia) wisdom in Aristotle's Nicomachaean Ethics. He studied philosophy in Valkenburg in Holland with the German students of the day. Even though the Jesuits had moved their philosophate to Holland because of Nazi activity in Germany, there was more than a trace of German chauvinism among Kevin's fellow-students. In his final year the coveted honour for the brighter students was to defend the Disputatio during the final year - this was in the heyday of neo-scholasticism. To the chagrin of many, Kevin was picked for this honour. Traditionally, in order to ensure a good show, those making the formal “objections” discussed the gist of what they had prepared with the defendant a few days before the great day. No such courtesy was extended to Kevin. But the objectors paid dearly for this: Kevin with brilliant distinctions and sub-distinctions stopped them in their tracks, so that the occasion became a public humiliation for them, much to the delight of the other non-Germans present. To prolong the occasion some of the professors intervened with the own 'objec tions', but although Kevin spoke with perfect courtesy, they fared... no better. This was a side of Kevin which he seldom revealed. He had a brilliant and incisive mind, but if pushed too far could reveal a lack of patience, almost an attitude of contempt - which he regretted immediately and tried hard to make amends for,

When I moved to Milltown Park in 1955 I was asked to teach the Short' course in dogmatic theology in a three-year cycle. Part of the old presentation of each 'thesis' was the Scriptural proof. Knowing that the whole world of Scripture was moving from for merly entrenched positions, I tried to make sure that I was as up to date as possible. After trying various people I finally settled on Kevin as my scriptural guide. He was a gifted guide, always avail able for consultation, invariably helpful and friendly. To this word which refers to friendship | shall return shortly.

Once he had been appointed to Milltown Park, where he had studied theology, Kevin was assigned to teach the old course of Apologetics; this included at that time an introduction to the Gospels. Here Kevin developed his own encyclopaedic knowledge of Scripture. Where he studied Hebrew I do not know, but he became an expert in it - so much so that he was Mgr Boylan's 'external examiner' for the degree in Oriental Languages in UCD The “Dead Sea Scrolls”, the writings surviving from Qumran, were discovered about this time, and Milltown Park Library was soon enriched with the official facsimile publications of the Scrolls. As well as becoming an expert on the Scrolls, Kevin translated, from the original Dutch, Fr Van Der Ploeg's book on the writings of Qumran. He worked in close cooperation with Professor Driver of Manchester University during this period, and together they combated Allegro's attempts to use the Scrolls in order to undermine the documentation for the origins of Christianity. Kevin wrote for Studies on diverse topics, but never received the publicity and recognition which his work deserved. In another Jesuit Province of that time he would have been given the opportunities he deserved for study and writing; a doctorate would have meant little to Kevin, but some recognition should have been given to him.

On the ordinary level of Jesuit community life Kevin was exemplary, deeply pastoral by inclination, which was revealed in his own pastoral work and especially when he was in charge for many years as sub-minister of “Supplies” from Milltown Park - allotting to many Dublin parishes priests to help out on Sunday. It is true to say that he was deeply respected by the Dublin dioce san clergy for his self-sacrificing willingness to help. On another level he was very proud of being a Synge Street past pupil, and he was a gifted football player, playing in Milltown Park well into his forties - even though he did this at some risk with some of his former pupils concentrating on knocking him out!

When in 1961 I was sent to Rome the excitement of the pre Vatican Il times was just beginning. During the few years that followed Kevin corresponded with me regularly, because I was collecting for him from the Italian and French newspapers any items which might throw light on intra- and extra-conciliar manoeuvers: these I sent on to him every week as he was writing a regular column for some Irish newspaper on Vatican II. But there was little personal in this correspondence. Kevin, in many ways, was a prisoner of his very academic world, in spite of his pastoral ad generous qualities. For him I think that some unforeseen suffering was needed to break open the academic armour. In some ways he was the product of the poorer elements in Jesuit formation in his time.

My last letter from him arrived to accompany investment-transfer documents which I had sent to him for his signature. In this let ter he revealed more humanity than in all the other years I had known him. He wrote: “You do not realize what a paradise you live in, with all its faults”.

Paddy Simpson who visited Kevin in Paris always stressed that “he was a much nicer fellow now”.

Talbot, Peter, c.1618-1680, Roman Catholic archbishop of Dublin and former Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 29 June 1618-15 November 1680

Born: 29 June 1618, Carton, County Kildare / Malahide County Dublin
Entered: c May 1635, Portugal - Lusitaniae Province (LUS)
Ordained: 06 April 1647, Rome Italy
Died: 15 November 1680, Dublin Castle, Dublin, County Dublin

Left Society of Jesus: 29 June 1659

Consecrated Archbishop of Dublin 09 May 1669, Antwerp, Netherlands

Younger brother of John Talbot SJ - RIP 1667


Talbot, Peter

Contributed by
Clarke, Aidan

Talbot, Peter (c.1618–1680), churchman, was sixth son of Sir William Talbot (qv), sometime recorder of the city of Dublin, and his wife, Alison Netterville. He entered the Society of Jesus in Portugal in May 1635 and completed his education in Rome, where he was ordained on 6 April 1647 and where he was said (by Oliver Plunkett (qv)) to have proved ‘so troublesome’ that he was sent to Florence for the tertian stage of his probation.

He returned to Portugal before long and went thence to the Spanish Netherlands, where he became involved in the politics, both high and low, of the royalist exiles. His conjoint aims were to secure support from catholic sources for the restoration of Charles II and to persuade Charles to court this support by promising concessions to his catholic subjects. In the early summer of 1653, probably at the prompting of his francophile Franciscan brother Thomas, he submitted proposals to the French ambassador in London and visited Ireland briefly in furtherance of them, but the venture proved fruitless. He returned to London in 1654, this time from Madrid as an agent from Philip IV to the Spanish ambassador, Cardenas. Late in the same year, in Cologne, he acted as an intermediary between the king and the papal nuncio, to whom he hinted that Charles might be prepared to convert to catholicism, and who declined to convey so improbable a message to Rome. In 1656 Talbot exploited his ready access to the Spanish court to advise Charles that a treaty with Spain would be assured if he were secretly to declare his conversion, but the subsequent treaty was concluded on other terms, without Talbot's assistance. From 1655, when his brothers Richard (qv) and Gilbert had been involved in a plot to kill Oliver Cromwell (qv), Talbot had become increasingly committed to promoting the extravagant schemes of the former Leveller Edward Sexby, which ranged from Spanish invasion to the assassination of Cromwell.

After Richard Talbot was admitted to the circle of James (qv), duke of York, Peter came under suspicion of transferring his allegiance to James. In the summer of 1658 he incurred the king's displeasure by making a mysterious visit to Spain on James's behalf, and even greater ambiguity surrounded a visit to England on the fall of the protectorate in April 1659. It appears that Talbot travelled at the instance of ministers of the Spanish government, who were persuaded that he could help to prevent the republicans from gaining control. However, his failure to inform Charles of his mission prompted suspicions that he was either exploring the possibility of a peace between the commonwealth and Spain or intriguing in the interests of York. This episode triggered a final breach with the Society of Jesus. Though Talbot had not yet been professed, a place had been found for him, teaching moral theology in Antwerp, and he had published a number of works of religious controversy, but his political activity had not met with the approval of his superiors. Almost certainly in response to representations from Charles or his advisers, the general instructed him to leave England and ‘dissevered’ him from the order in June when he did not obey. Talbot managed to recover the king's favour in the autumn when he travelled to Fuenterrabia to assist Charles in his efforts to have his interests accommodated in the Franco–Spanish treaty of the Pyrenees. He had returned to the Netherlands and was pursuing further possibilities of securing military backing in May 1660 when Charles was restored.

In September 1660 Talbot took up residence in London, where his involvement in the politics of court faction continued. The king's chief minister, Clarendon, was implacably hostile to him but he enjoyed the patronage of Ormond (qv) and supported the loyal remonstrance promoted by Peter Walsh (qv), with whom he had worked closely in 1659. Appointed queen's almoner shortly after the royal marriage in May 1662, he was dismissed and barred from court less than six months later at the behest of the king's mistress, Lady Castlemaine. As Richard Talbot became increasingly identified with catholic opposition to Ormond in Ireland, Peter became critical of both Ormond and Walsh: he opposed the adoption of the remonstrance in Ireland and associated himself with Clarendon's opponents in England, particularly Buckingham and Arlington, both of whom he had known well on the Continent. Clarendon's fall in August 1667 and Ormond's dismissal from the lord lieutenancy, announced by Charles in February 1669, prepared the way for Talbot's appointment to the archbishopric of Dublin, which coincided with the appointment of Lord Robartes (qv) in place of Ormond. Talbot was consecrated in Antwerp on 9 May and took up his position in Dublin in the autumn, having spent the intervening months in London arguing for an end to the established policy of favouring those clergy who supported the remonstrance. The expectation of a close working relationship with the new lord lieutenant was disappointed when Robartes resigned within six months of his arrival (September 1669) and was replaced by Lord Berkeley (qv). Berkeley, who had known and distrusted Talbot in exile, treated him with the wariness required by his influential connections and dealt so far as possible with Archbishop Plunkett instead. When a general synod of bishops convened in Dublin on 17 June 1670, Talbot pursued his advantage over Walsh and the remonstrants by proposing the adoption of an alternative declaration of temporal allegiance, closely resembling the address that had been rejected by Ormond in 1666; this initiative was accepted by the meeting and formally welcomed by Berkeley (who had approved the declaration in advance at the prompting of Richard Talbot). During the synod Peter Talbot openly challenged the authority of Plunkett, partly by denying the historic primacy of the see of Armagh but also by claiming a royal mandate to oversee the conduct of the Irish clergy. The practical difficulty was resolved by having the decisions issued in the name of the bishop of Ossory, as secretary of the meeting, rather than that of the primate. The jurisdictional dispute was considered by the congregation of Propaganda Fide on 2 August 1672, when judgement was reserved and the protagonists were bound to silence. Later in the year, Bishop John O'Molony (qv) of Killaloe brokered an uneasy reconciliation between the rivals.

For some years, Talbot exercised his pastoral charge openly, holding provincial synods in 1670 and 1671, conducting a visitation in the latter year, and convening a number of meetings of clergy after Berkeley's replacement in August 1672 by the earl of Essex (qv). In February 1671 he presided at a meeting of nobles convened to arrange financial support for Richard Talbot's representation of catholic interests in London and took the opportunity to propose that the clergy should be required to contribute. His struggle with the remonstrants continued: he was charged with exercising foreign jurisdiction by a number of Franciscans in January 1671 and successfully defended before the council by Sir Nicholas Plunkett (qv). In the late summer of 1672 he excommunicated the Dominican prior of Kilcock, John Byrne, placed the parish under interdict, and prevailed on his nephew, a justice of the peace, to have Byrne committed to jail. On 26 March 1673 the English commons, as part of its response to Charles's declaration of indulgence, demanded that Talbot should be banished ‘for his notorious disloyalty and disobedience and contempt of the laws’ and in the following month, with the encouragement of the administration, Fr Byrne charged him with exercising a foreign jurisdiction and with raising money contrary to law. A committee appointed by Essex took evidence of Talbot's conduct in May 1673. The charges were found to have been proven and his claim to have authority from England ‘for punishing and correcting the popish clergy’ was judged untrue on the testimony of Oliver Plunkett, who had been so assured by Talbot's successor as queen's almoner, Lord Philip Howard. Talbot had applied for and received a pass to travel to France in April; he left Ireland in June, secured letters of recommendation to Louis XIV from both Charles and the duke of York, and arrived in France by September.

Supported by a royal pension of £200, he wrote a number of works of religious controversy, published his statement of the case for Dublin's right to the primacy, and addressed a pastoral letter to his diocese in May 1674. By March 1676 he had moved to England, where he lived in declining health as a guest of Sir James Pool in Cheshire for two years before receiving permission from Ormond (again lord lieutenant) to return to Ireland in May 1678 on condition that he did not interfere in temporal matters. He lived privately in his brother Richard's house at Luttrellstown till 11 October, when he was arrested on foot of an accusation that he was implicated in the ‘popish plot’, with particular responsibility for the murder of the duke of Ormond. The charge was without foundation but there was an irony, not lost on Ormond, in the fact that Peter had been suspected of complicity in a threat to take Ormond's life for which Richard had been imprisoned in 1664. Peter remained in prison in Dublin without trial till his death (25 October × 22 November 1680), some weeks after he had received sacramental absolution from his erstwhile rival and fellow prisoner, Oliver Plunkett.

Bodl., Carte MS 38; Peter Walsh, The history and vindication of the loyal formulary or Irish remonstrance (1674); T. Carte, The life of James, duke of Ormond (1735–6); id., A collection of original letters and papers (1739); L. F. Renehan, Collections on Irish church history, i: Irish archbishops (1861); Calendar of the Clarendon state papers preserved in the Bodleian Library, ii–v (1869–1970); P. F. Moran (ed.), Spicilegium Ossoriense (1874); HMC, Rep. 10, app. 5, Jesuit archives (1885); P. F Moran, Memoir of the Ven. Oliver Plunkett (1895); CSPD, 1672–3, 1678; HMC, Ormonde MSS, ii; new ser., v (1908); Eva Scott, The travels of the king (1907); P. W. Sergeant, Little Jennings and Fighting Dick Talbot (1913); William P. Burke, The Irish priests in the penal times (1914); Benignus Millett, The Irish Franciscans, 1651–1665 (1964); id., Survival and reorganization, 1650–95 (1968); C. Petrie, The great Tyrconnell (1972); John Hanly (ed.), The letters of Saint Oliver Plunkett (1979)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :

DOB Carton, Kildare; Ent 1635 Portugal; RIP 1680 Newgate prison - LEFT 29/06/1659 “justis de causis”, but wished to return

Son of William 1st Baron of Carton and Alison née Netterville. Brother of John SJ. Brother of Richard, first Duke of Tyrconnell by James II and Viceroy of Ireland. Brother Sir Robert 2nd Baron of Carton. (HIB CATS and Dr Peter Talbot’s “Friar Disciplined”) Cousins of th Netterville’s SJ.

He rendered good service to Charles II while exiled, and a letter from the King to him is given in Thurloe’s State Papers Vol i p 662. He is also alluded to in another paper in the same volume, p 752.
On the death of Thomas Fleming Archbishop of Dublin, Pope Clement IX apointed Peter as Archbishop on 02/05/1669.

1638 Came to Irish Mission and was a good Preacher, Confessor and Professor of Humanities.

1658 On 30/041658 he arrived at the Professed House Antwerp from Ireland (BELG CAT)

1680 He died at Newgate prison Dublin for the faith. He wished to reenter the Society from which he had been dismissed “justis de causis”. “Father Peter Talbot in England, though he did not belong to the English Province, was dismissed by order of Father General 29/06/1659”. (CAT Tertius of ANG 1659-1660. (cf Hogan’s List)

Dr Talbot in his “Friar Disciplined” says to the famous Peter Walsh “Mr Walsh, Father John Talbot, of whom you said when he died (as if it were a rarity of kind of miracle) ‘There lies a honest Jesuit’ assured me, that, after his brother Sir Robert Talbot Had...”
Dr Talbot in his “Haeresis Blackloiana” p 250 says that he himself had studied in Rome with such gifted Jesuits (orbis miracula) as Tirrell, Maurus, Telin (an Irishman - Teeling?), and the younger Palavicino, and was appointed to teach Philosophy at Évora, which has given so many outstanding Theologians to England and Ireland, and amongst others, Father John Talbot, my brother, a distinguished defender of the Roman Faith”
In his treatise on “Religion adn Government” p 557, Dr Talbot says he saw the Martyr, Father Mastrilli, in Lisbon on his way to India, and heard him tell his story of his cure by St Xaverius.

(For his literary works see de Backer “Biblioth. des Écrivains SJ”, and for a fuller account see Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)

Dr Talbot’s Letter to Peter Walsh in his “Friar Disciplined”
“As to Friar Walsh, his no less ridiculous than malicious observations and comments upon my devotion and respect to the Most reverend Father Oliva and the whole Society - I must own to the whole world I should be as ill as a man and as a great liar as Walsh himself (and that is the worst that can be said of any man), if I did not esteem very much and speak well of the virtues and learning of the Society. Few can speak with ore knowledge and none with less impartiality. I have lived in their most famous Colleges, and taught in some. I never was in any College or community of theirs where there was not one or more of known eminent sanctity, many of extraordinary virtue, and none that I knew vicious. I always found their Superiors charitable and sincere, their Procurators devout, their Professors humble though learned, their young Masters of Humanity and Students of Philosophy and Divinity very chaste, and if any gave the least suspicion of being otherwise, he was presently dismissed, It is my greatest admiration how so great a body, so generally employed and trusted by the greatest princes, so conversant in the world (according to their holy Institute) can savour so llittle of it and live so innocently as they do, and even forsake the best part of it, Europe their many conveniences and relations (who are illustrious) and banish themselves to Asia, Africa and America, upon no other account of saving souls. In their schools they teach not those infamous doctrines which that foul mouthed FW asperseth their authors with and says I do practice, but are very reserved in delivering any larger opinion, even of the most famous writers, for fear men should abuse an misapply their authority. This is the substance of what I have said and must say if I will speak truth of an Order, wherein I have lived many years in great content, and truly so innocently (through God’s grace and their example) that the greatest sin I can charge mnyself with during my abode among them, is the resolution I took of leaving them, though (perhaps erroneously) I framed then a judgement that the circumstances di excuse it from being mortal”... (Hogan’s note)

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
TALBOT, PETER, son of Sir William Talbot, and Brother of the Richard Talbot, who was created Duke of Tyrconnell by King James the Second, and Viceroy of Ireland. Peter was born in the County of Dublin, in 1620. At the age of 15 he enrolled himself in Portugal, amongst the children of St. Ignatius. After his promotion to the Priesthood, he was employed to teach Moral Theology at Antwerp. He had reached London in the spring of 1651, and was preparing to pass over to Ireland on some secret service and commission of Jean IV King of Portugal, and I find him described in a letter of the 29th of April that year as sapientia, pietate et zelo tanto oneri parem. His letter from Cologne, written on the 17th of November, 1654, shews how fully he possessed the confidence of his legitimate Sovereign Charles the Second, then a resident in that City. That his Majesty was then disposed to favour his Catholic subjects, whom he had found to be most faithful to his person and most zealously attached to Monarchial Government, is certain nay, that he was favourably disposed towards their religion is not improbable; but I see no cause for crediting the assertion of the learned author of the Hibcrnia Dominicana, p.711, that the King was reconciled to the Catholic Church by F. Peter Talbot, at Cologne, in the year 1656. There is too much reason to believe, that the King’s was but a death bed conversion.

About the period of the Restoration of his Sovereign, whose interests he had long and most diligently served, and promoted F. Talbot obtained “justis de causis” a dispensation from his vows; but his affection for the Society of Jesus continued unabated. On the death of Dr. Thomas Fleming, Archbishop of Dublin, Pope Clement IX named Dr. Talbot, on the 2nd of May, 1669, to fill that vacant see. His zeal for the advancement of Religion, and for his Country’s welfare (for he was a true patriot), procured him many enemies in those days of intolerance and bigotry. With his pen he was indefatigable, as the list of his works, which he himself supplied for insertion in Southwell’s Bibliotheca Scriptorum Societatis Jesu (p.702) abundantly proves. In consequence of K. Charles IInd’s Proclamation for the banishment of all Bishops and Religious from Ireland, his Grace repaired to the continent; and I find by his original letter, dated the 29th of December, 1673, from Paris, that his Sovereign, as well as James Duke of York, had recommended him to the most Christian King, and even in letters written with their own hands, to provide him with a Benefice becoming his station, and that he had then actually delivered them. How long he remained abroad I cannot determine; but I read in a Journal, formerly kept at Watten, near St. Omer, the following memorandum : “AD 1676, Feb. 24. My Lord Primate of Ireland, Lord Talbot came here from St. Omer, with F. Retor and F. Ireland”. Soon after his return to Ireland, whilst labouring under great bodily infirmity, he was seized in his brother s house at Carr Town, County Kildare, removed in a chair, and committed a close prisoner, as an accomplice in Oates Plot !!! Harris, (p.197, Book I. Writers of Ireland) with all his prejudices, admits that “nothing appeared against him from his examinations, nor from those of others”. Still the wicked policy of the Sovereign allowed this faithful subject* and old friend to linger for two years in confinement within the walls of Newgate, Dublin, where he died in 1680. See the honorable testimony, p. 131, of the Hibernia Dominicana, to this most injured character. Dr. Patrick Russell was elected his successor in the Archbishoprick on the 2nd of August, 1683.
Whilst a Father of the Society of Jesus, he published :

  1. “A Treatise of the nature of Catholic Faith and Heresie, with Reflection upon the Nullitie of the English Protestant Church and Clergy” Svo Rouen, 1657. pp. 89.
  2. “The Polititians Catechisme for his Instruction in Divine Faith and Morale Honesty”. Svo. Antwerp, 1658, pp.193. Dodd, p. 284, vol. iii. Church History might have improved his article, had he paid more attention to the spirit of F. Southwell’s Narrative, which lay open before him.
  • This Luminary of the O.S.D. Dr. Thomas Burke was born in Dublin, in 1709, and succeeded Dr. James Dunne in the See of Ossory, in 1759. He was consecrated at Drogheda by the Primate Anthony Blake, on Low Sunday, the 22nd. of April, that year, and died at his house in Maudlin Street, Kilkenny, on Wednesday, the 25th of September, 1776. This compilation 4to. pp. 797, was actually printed at Kilkenny, from the press of James Stokes (although the title page sets out that it issued from the Metternick Print-office at Cologne) in 1762. Ten years later, a Supplement was printed at Kilkenny, I think by Edmund Finn, which increases the whole work to 949 pages. The Historical Part is valuable Indeed; but the political tendency of the work excited great uneasiness and alarm in the Bishops and Clergy of Ireland. Seven of the Prelates met at Thurles, and signed a declaration on the 28th day of July, 1775, expressive of their disapproval of the Publication as tending to weaken and subvert the fidelity and allegiance due to their gracious Sovereign George III. and to disturb the Public peace and tranquillity, and to give a handle to their opponents to impute principles that they utterly reject, and which are unfounded in the Doctrines of the Catholic Church. See the Anthologia Hibernica for February, 1793, p. 96

  • The honour of the reconciliation is due to the Benedictines.That holy Missionary, Benedict Gibbon, (born at Westcliffe, in Kent; professed at Lambspring, on the 21st of March, 1672; deceased 1st of January, 1723), whilst dining with F. Mansuet, O.S.F., Confessor to James, Duke of York, desired him to go to his Royal Highness and advise him to propose to the King, then near his end, whether he did not desire to die in the Communion of the Catholic Church. The Duke did so; and the consequence was, that F. John Huddleston concluded this reconciliation. The seeds of this Conversion were probably sown at Mosely. During the King’s concealment there, he had much interesting conversation with F. Hudleston the Chaplain.

  • To the Editor of the Catholic Miscellany for 1826, the public is indebted for reprinting the admirable Pastoral Letter of this loyl Archbishop of Dublin, dated Paris, May 2nd, 1674. See pp 66. 72.

Francis Finegan SJ Biographical Dictionary 1598-1773

He was the yonger brother of Father John Talbot SJ, and was born June 29, 1618, and entered the Society at Lisbon, c May 1635. Before his admission to the Novitiate he had already begun his Philosophical studies.

After his Noviceship he resumed his Philosophy course at Coimbra, and according to the Portuguese triennian Catalogus of 1642, was reading Theology, but that source does not say where. In 1645 he was teaching Latin in Lisbon and was not yet a Priest, and it is possible that he interrupted his Theological studies to make his Regency. In any event, he was not ordained Priest until April 1648. The following year he was sent to the Roman Province to make his tertianship at Florence. Thereafter he identified himself with the cause of Charles II.

He was in Ireland in 1652, and for some time the following year. Afterward, his name appears in only one Catalogue, that of Flanders in 1655, when he was a Military Chaplain. The contemporary correspondence shows that his journeyings and negotiations for the Royalist cause earned him the disapproval of the General. He was finally dismissed from the Society on June 29, 1659.

His departure from the Society, however, was friendly, and ever after, his relations with his former colleagues in Ireland were most amicable. he eventually became Archbishop of Dublin, 1669, and died a prisoner for the Faith on November 15, 1680, at Dublin Castle.

The cause for his beatification is before the Holy See.

Portrait of Peter Talbot, c. 1660, located in Malahide Castle
Church Catholic Church
Archdiocese Archdiocese of Dublin
Appointed 1669
Ordination c. 1647
Consecration 9 May 1669
Personal details
Born 1618/1620
Malahide, County Dublin, Ireland
Died 15 November 1680
Dublin Castle, Dublin, Ireland
Peter Talbot (1618/1620 – 15 November 1680) was the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin from 1669 to his death in prison. He was a victim of the Popish Plot.

Early life
Talbot was born at Malahide in 1618[1][2] or 1620[3][4][5] to Sir William Talbot and his wife Alison (née Netterville).[2][3][5] In May 1635, he entered the Society of Jesus in Portugal.[3][2][5] He was ordained a priest at Rome on either 6 April 1647[2] or 6 June 1648.[1]

According to archbishop Oliver Plunkett, Talbot proved ‘so troublesome’ that he was made to carry out the tertian stage of his probation in Florence.[2]

Talbot held the chair of theology at the College of Antwerp.[3][4][5] In the meantime during the Commonwealth period, Charles II and the royal family were compelled to seek refuge in Europe. Throughout the period of the king's exile, Talbot's brothers were attached to the royal court. The eldest brother, Sir Robert Talbot, 2nd Baronet, had held a high commission under James Butler, 1st Duke of Ormond in the army in Ireland and was reckoned among the king's most confidential advisers. A younger brother, Richard Talbot, later 1st Earl of Tyrconnell, was also devoted to the cause of the exiled monarch and stood high in royal favour.[4]

Peter Talbot himself was constantly in attendance on Charles II and his court. On account of his knowledge of the continental languages, he was repeatedly dispatched to private embassies in Lisbon, Madrid, and Paris. On the return of the king to London, Talbot received an appointment as Queen's Almoner, but the Clarendon and Ormond faction, which was then predominant, feared his influence with the king. He was accused of conspiring with four Jesuits to assassinate the Duke of Ormond, and he was forced to seek safety by resigning his position at Court and retiring to continent Europe. The king allowed him a pension of three hundred pounds a year. Before his return to England, Talbot had, with the approval of the General of the Jesuits, severed his connection with the Society.[4]

He was appointed Archbishop of Dublin in 1669. Sources differ on the exact date - 11 January,[4] 8 March[1] or 2 May.[3] Talbot was consecrated in Antwerp on 9 May 1669,[2][5] assisted by the Bishops of Ghent and Ferns.[4][5]

Catholic persecution
During this period, the English treatment of Catholics in Ireland was more lenient than usual, owing to the known sympathies of the King (who entered the Catholic Church on his deathbed). In August 1670, Talbot held his first Diocesan Synod in Dublin. It was opened with High Mass, which for forty years many of the faithful had not witnessed. In the same year, an assembly of the archbishops and bishops and representatives of the clergy was held in Dublin. At this assembly, the question of precedence and of the primatial authority gave rise to considerable discussion and led to an embittered controversy between the Archbishop of Dublin and Oliver Plunkett, Archbishop of Armagh.[4] The subject had been one of great controversy in the Middle Ages, but had been in abeyance for some time.[citation needed] Both prelates considered that they were asserting the rights of their respective sees, and each published a treatise on the subject. Another meeting of the Catholic gentry was convened by Talbot, at which it was resolved to send to the Court at London a representative who would seek redress for some of the grievances to which the Catholics of Ireland were subjected. This alarmed the Protestants in Ireland, who feared that the balance of power might shift to the Catholic majority. They protested to King Charles, and in 1673 some of the repressive measures against Irish Catholics were reinstated, and Talbot was compelled to seek safety in exile.[4]

Exile, arrest and death
During his banishment, he resided generally in Paris. In 1675, Talbot, in poor health, obtained permission to return to England, and for two years he resided with a family friend at Poole Hall in Cheshire. Towards the end of 1677, he petitioned the Crown for leave "to come to Ireland to die in his own country", and through the influence of James, Duke of York his request was granted.[4]

Shortly after that, the Popish Plot was hatched by Titus Oates, and information was forwarded to James Butler, 1st Duke of Ormond as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, to the effect that a rebellion was being planned in Ireland, that Peter Talbot was one of the accomplices, and that assassins had been hired to murder the Duke himself. Ormond was in private deeply sceptical of the Popish Plot's existence, remarking that Talbot was too ill to carry it out.[4] Of the alleged assassins, Ormond stated that they were such "silly drunken vagabonds" that "no schoolboy would trust them to rob an orchard"; but he thought it politically unwise to show his doubts publicly. Though he was sympathetic to Oliver Plunkett, who was also arrested in connection with the alleged Plot and was later to die on the scaffold, he had always been hostile to Talbot.[6]

On 8 October 1678, Ormond signed a warrant for Talbot's arrest.[6][4] He was arrested at Cartown near Maynooth at the house of his brother, Colonel Richard Talbot, and was then moved to Dublin Castle.[4]

For two years Talbot remained in prison without trial, where he fell ill.[4][2] Despite their long friendship, Charles II, fearful of the political repercussions, made no effort to save him.[6] Talbot was held in an adjoining cell to Oliver Plunkett. The two archbishops reconciled as fellow prisoners, setting aside their disagreements as expressed in their treatises.[4]

From his prison cell, Talbot had written on 12 April 1679, petitioning that a priest be allowed to visit him, as he was bedridden for months and was now in imminent danger of death. The petition was refused, but Plunkett, on hearing of Talbot's dying condition, forced his way through the warders and administered to the dying prelate the last consolations of the sacraments.[4][2] Talbot died in prison on 15 November 1680.[6][1][2][4]

Talbot is said to have been interred in the churchyard of St. Audoen's Church, close by the tomb of Rowland FitzEustace, 1st Baron Portlester.[4]

(1) Cheney, David M. "Archbishop Peter Talbot". Retrieved 1 January 2024.

(2) Clarke, Aidan. "Talbot, Peter". Dictionary of Irish Biography.

(3) Oliver, George (1838). Collections towards illustrating the biography of the Scotch, English, and Irish members, of the Society of Jesus. C. Dolman. ISBN 978-1333240035.

(4) Moran, Francis (1912). "Peter Talbot" . Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 14.

(5) Bagwell, Richard (1898). "Talbot, Peter" . Dictionary of National Biography. Vol. 55. pp. 327–329.

(6) Kenyon, J.P. (2000). The Popish Plot. Phoenix Press Reissue. p. 225.

◆ Henry Foley - Records of the English province of The Society of Jesus Vol VII
TALBOT, PETER, Father (Irish), born at Carton, in Kildare, 1620; entered the Society in Portugal, 1635. (Hogan's list.) He was son of Sir William Talbot, and brother of Richard Talbot, who was created first Duke of Tyrconnell by King James II.
This Father rendered good service to Charles II, when an exile, and a letter from the King to him is given in Thurloe's State Papers, vol. i. p. 662. He is also alluded to in another paper in p. 752 of the same vol. Upon the death of Dr. Thomas Fleming, Archbishop of Dublin, Pope Clement IX, appointed Father Peter Talbot to fill the vacant Archbishopric on May 2, 1669. For his literary works see Father Southwell's Bibl. Scriptorum .7., and Father de Backer's Biblioth. des Ecrivains 5.7., and for a fuller account see Oliver, from Stonyhurst MSS. On April 30, 1658, he arrived from Ireland at the Professed House, Antwerp. (Belgian Catalogue.) He died in Newgate Prison, Dublin, for the Catholic faith, in 1680. He wished to re-enter the Society, from which he had been dismissed, justis de causis. (Hogan's list) " Father Peter Talbot in England, although he did not belong to the English Province, was dismissed by order of the Rev. Father General, June 29, 1659."-Catalogus Tertius of the English Province for 1659-60. See Hogan's Irish list for further particulars. (1)

Talbot, John, born in 1611, in county Killare, probably at Carton, the seat of his father, Sir W. Talbot, Bart. ; entered the Socięty in 1632; came to the Irish Mission in 1638; was a good preacher, Confessarius and Professor of Humanities; was brother of Sir Robert Talbot, Bart., Richard, Duke of Tyrconnell, Viceroy of Ireland, and Peter, Archbishop of Dublin. (Irish Catalogues S.J. Dr. Talbot's Friar Disciplined,) He dieel between 1666 and 1674 ; since Dr. Talbot, in his Friar Disciplined, published in 1674, says to the famous Peter Walsh : “Jr. Walsh, Father John Talbot, of whom you said when he died (as if it yere & rarity or kind of miracle). There lies a honest Jesuit,' assuredi me, that, after his brother, Sir Robert Talbot, hari," etc. Again, Dr. Talbot, in his Horosis Blackloiana, says he himself had studied in Konie with such gifted Jesuits (orbis miracula) as Tirrell, Maurus, Telin (an Irishman), and the younger Palavicino, and was appointed to reach philosophy at the University of Evora, which has given so many orthodox theologians to England and Ireland, and amongst others Father John Talbot, my brother, a distinguished defender of the Roman Faith." (Hurusis Blacklinna, P. 250.) In his Treatise on Religion and Goernment, p. 557, Dr. Talbot says he saw the martyr, Father Mastrilli, in Lislxon, on his way to India, and heard him tell the story of his cure by St. Xavcrius. All these Talbots were cousins of the Fathers Netterville, S.).

The Gilbert Talbot of the Society, who cannot be identified in the English Catalogues, was perhaps a brother of Peter's, who had been a Colonel in the Irish army in the “Forty-one Wars" (1641), and, says Clarendon, was looked upon as a man of courage, having fought a dud or trvo with stond men. I think there were three John Talbots S.J., as follows: (1) John Tallxot, born 1609; entered 1626, in Portugal. (2) John Talbot, born in Kildare, 1611; entered 1632; came to mission in 1638. (3) John Talbot, born 1619; entererl circ. 1637; one of them was a brother of Peter's, the two others were probably an uncle and a cousin of his.

Dr. Talbot's Laler to Peter Walsh in the " Friar Disciplined,"
As to Friar Walsh, his no less ridiculous than malicious observations and comments upon my devotion and respect to the most Reverend Father Oliva and the whole Society--I must own to the whole world I should be as ill a man and as great a liar as Walsh himself (and that is the worst that can le said of any man), if I did not cstcem very much and speak Hell of the virtue and learning of the society. Fow can speak with more knowledge, and none with less impartiality. I have been in most of their Provinces of Europe. I have lived in their most famous Colleges, and taught in some. I never was in any College or community of theirs where there was not ne or more of known eminent sanctity, inany of extraordinary virtue, wul none that I know vicious. I always found their Superiors charitable and sincere, their l'rocurators (levout, their l'rofessors humble though learnul, their young Masters of Ifumarity and Students of Philosophy and Divinity very chasic, and if any pare the least suspicion of being utlicrwise, he was presently dismissed. It is ny greatest aclınira tion how so great a lody, so generally employed and trusted by the greatest princes, so einversant in the world (according to their holy Institute). can savour so little of it and live so innocently as they do: and cten forsake the best part of it, kurope, their many conveniences and relations (who are illustrious), and lanish themselves to Asia, Africa, and America, tupun no other account but that of Sving souls. In their schools they tanch not those infanious (loctrines which that foul-momhed F. . asperseth their authors with, and says I do practise, frut are very reserved in delivering any larger opinion even of the most famous writers, for fear men should alsuse and misapply their authority. This is the substance of what I always said and must say if I will speak truth of an Order wherein I have lived many years in great content, and truly so innocently (through God's grace and their example!, that the greatest sin I can charge myself with during my alade among them, is the resolution I took of leaving them, thouyl (perhaps erroneously) I framed then a judgment that the circumstances did excuse it from being inorlal," etc. (This note is furnished by I'r. Hogan.)