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Tyndall, Robert J, 1897-1989, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/424
  • Person
  • 05 September 1897-10 December 1988

Born: 05 September 1897, Monkstown, County Dublin
Entered: 31 August 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1928, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 10 December 1988, Our Lady’s Hospice, Dublin

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

by 1923 in Australia - Regency at Studley Hall, Kew
by 1930 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Robert Tyndall was educated by the Vincentians at Castlenock and entered the novitiate in 1914. Regency was at Xavier College, Burke Hall, 1921-25. He looked after boarders, taught classes, ran the library and even managed junior cadets, all with great success. Tyndall had considerable capacity for friendship, from Archbishop Mannix to his smallest students. Many of these friends maintained a lifelong correspondence with him.

Scantlebury, Charles C, 1894-1972, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/396
  • Person
  • 20 September 1894-23 May 1972

Born: 20 September 1894, Cobh, County Cork
Entered: 07 September 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 23 May 1972, Loyola House, Eglinton Road, Dublin

Editor of An Timire, 1928-29; 1936-49.

Studied for BA at UCD

by 1924 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1930 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 47th Year No 3 1972

Loyola House
Father Scantlebury's sudden death on 23rd May came as a major shock to the community. Father Charlie was a “founder” member of Loyola House. The first entries in the Minister's journal are his and he tells how he (the first Minister') joined Father McCarron there on 19th November, 1956 - “for a week Father McCarron cooked all the meals most efficiently”.
Particularly since his retirement from the Messenger Office, Father Charlie was rarely absent in his fifteen years and his sudden disappearance from the Community has left a notable void - and many chores, kindnesses, daily routine jobs, willingly undertaken now to be left undone or taken on by others.

Obituary :

Fr Charles Scantlebury SJ (1894-1972)

Had he lived a few more months, Fr Charlie Scantlebury would have celebrated his diamond jubilee as a member of the Society on September 7th of this year. He was born on September 20th, 1894, in the Cove of Cork, Cobh to us and Queenstown to our fathers. It was the chief transatlantic port of call in the Ireland of those days, a bustling, busy place of rare beauty. He was, and not with out reason, proud of his native place. Having begun his schooling with the Presentation Brothers in their College at Cobh, he came to Mungret at the age of fifteen in 1909. He entered the noviceship at Tullabeg, direct from Mungret, in September 1912. Fr, Martin Maher was his Master of Novices, and for his first year Fr. William Lockington (author of “Bodily Health and Spiritual Vigour”) was Socius. From the first day of his religious life, he was a model of orderly living, up with the lark and “busy as a bee” all day long, most exact in all practices and absolutely indefatigable.
Having taken his first vows on September 8th, 1914, he went to the new Juniorate at Rathfarnham where he spent four years, the first year in what, at that time, was called “the home juniorate”, and the last three at University College. He was awarded his B.A. degree in the summer of 1918. It was during his Rathfarnham years - years that witnessed so many manifestations of patriotic endeavour - that what was to be one of the abiding interests of his life began, the revival of Irish as the spoken language of the people. Facilities for developing a blas' in those days were few enough but later, when improvements came, Fr Charles was to use them to the full. He spent many holidays in the Gaeltacht and became a fluent speaker, After Philosophy at Milltown Park, 1918-21, he wsa assigned to Belvedere. Here another side of his character became evident, his apostolic zeal, then manifested by unremitting interest in and concern for the boys under his care. In the extra curricular activities, particularly the Cycling Club and the Camera Club, he found an ideal method of meeting and influencing boys from various classes in the school. Some of the pupils whom he helped in those days love to recall his name with reverence. After Theology in Milltown Park, 1925-29, where he was ordained in July 1928 by Archbishop Edward Byrne, and the Tertianship, 1929-30, at St, Beuno's, he returned to Belvedere, to be Editor of the Irish Messenger of the Sacred Heart. Thus began what was to be the great work of his life. For the next thirty-two years he was Editor of the Messenger and National Director of the Apostleship of Prayer. For a dozen or so of these years he was Editor of An Timthire as well. Under his editorship, the circulation of the Irish Messenger continued to grow until in the early nineteen-fifties it reached a record height. In his later years he had, like other Editors and publishers of religious magazines, to face new and wearisome difficulties, That he found all this work easy or particularly to his taste would be a false assumption but the strain did not diminish in any way the vigour with which he applied himself to it. He had, of course, the consolation of knowing that he was, in all this, working not only for the holy Catholic faith but for the motherland also. From every point of view his work at the Irish Messenger Office was a real success.
If there is any mystery in Fr. Scantlebury's life it lies in the amount and the variety of his extra-editorial activities. He was a popular giver of the Spiritual Exercises, A member of the Old Dublin Society since the early forties, he was Council member in 1949-50, Vice-President from 1951 to 1955 and again on the Council 1961-62. He was a regular contributor to the Society's proceedings: papers read by him included “Lambay”, “Belvedere College”, “Lusk”, “A Tale of Two Islands” and “Tallaght’. He was the second recipient of the President's Medal (now known as The Society Medal) which he was awarded for his paper on Lambay”, read to the Society on February 26th, 1945. Fr Scantlebury was granted Life Membership of the Society in 1971. He illustrated his lectures by slides made by himself. Of such slides he had a large collection, Patriotism for him consisted largely in helping to conserve what was best in the things of the spirit. He wished to preserve to his generation something of the glories of his country's past, Four of his talks appeared in booklets, published by the Messenger Office. These were entitled : Ireland's Island Monasteries; Saints and Shrines of Aran Mór; Treasures of the Past; Ireland's Ancient Monuments. He was never flamboyant, nor was he ever a bore.
To himself he remained true to the end. He continued to be a model religious, given selflessly to Christ Our Lord, intent only on the expansion of His Kingdom, Had the Rules of the Summary and the Common Rules been lost, they could almost be reconstructed from a study of his daily conduct. One could not imagine a situation in which he would hesitate to obey the known will of his Superior. At all periods of his priestly life, he was most active as a Confessor, The number of those who came to him for spiritual direction was remarkable. In the last decade of his life when, as a member of the community at Eglinton Road, he took his turn as Chaplain to the nuns at the New St. Vincent's Hospital, he was held in the highest esteem by all. As a neighbour said on the day of his funeral: “he knew everybody and was every one's friend”. He died on May 23rd. RIP

O'Farrell, Andrew, 1894-1961, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/330
  • Person
  • 09 June 1894-14 November 1961

Born: 09 June 1894, Foxrock, County Dublin
Entered: 07 October 1913, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Coláiste Iognáid, Galway
Died: 14 November 1961, Coláiste Iognáid, Galway

by 1917 at St Aloysius, Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1929 at St Beuno’s, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ Fr Francis Finegan: Admissions 1859-1948 - Post Office Civil Servant before entry

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 37th Year No 1 1962
Obituary :
Fr Andrew O’Farrell (1894-1961)
Fr. Andrew O'Farrell was born in Dublin in 1894. He received his secondary education at Blackrock College and then entered the service of the Hibernian Bank. He worked for some years in the Head Office, College Green, and in after life maintained a close connection with officials whom he had known there, especially with the late Henry J. Campbell, who was his manager and later became General Manager. In 1913 he resigned from the Bank and entered the novitiate at Tullabeg.
At the end of his novitiate Fr. O'Farrell went for a year to Rathfarnham. Owing to his early entry into the Bank he had not matriculated and so did not go on for a degree, a regrettable decision in view of the great ability which he later showed. In 1915 he went to Jersey for philosophy, where his natural talent for languages at once showed itself. He rapidly acquired a thorough knowledge of French and a high degree of fluency in speaking it. He used to recall, with amused satisfaction, how the scholastic who taught him remarked : “Vous parlerez bien Français parceque vous êtes très bavard”. He also developed a great taste for French literature which lasted all his life. It is remarkable that all this progress was made in the short space of eighteen months, since in the spring of 1917, owing to the threat of conscription, all the Irish philosophers were recalled from England and the continent to Milltown Park.
Fr. O'Farrell finished his philosophy at Milltown and then did four years' teaching, the first at Clongowes, the remainder at Mungret. He returned to Milltown for theology and was ordained in 1926. After theology he did another year's teaching in Clongowes, then tertianship at St. Beuno's and in 1929 came to Galway, where the college had just been re-opened as an all-Irish school.
It was now that Fr. O'Farrell's abilities found full scope. He had always been a keen student of the Irish language, and so threw himself with enthusiasm into the work of the college and perfected his own knowledge of Irish by regular attendance at Irish courses in the Gaeltacht. In later years, though he no longer needed to attend courses, he visited every summer the Gaeltacht of Carraroe, where he became a familiar and beloved figure and usually supplied for or assisted the parish priest, In St. Ignatius Fr. O'Farrell also found the opportunity to make use of the facility in French which he had acquired in Jersey. He was a most successful teacher and on several occasions his pupils obtained first place in French in one or other of the certificate examinations. Though often hampered by ill-health, Fr. O'Farrell continued up to within a few days of his death to devote himself to the apostolate of the classroom. In the current Catalogue the words appear after his name: "doc. ann. 39". To those who have any conception of the value of Catholic education these brief words are a record of great and lasting achievement. At Fr. O'Farrell's funeral His Lordship the Bishop of Galway spoke with appreciation of his long and devoted life as a teacher and held it up to others as an inspiring example.
It was not only as a teacher that Fr. O'Farrell established himself in Galway but also as a priest. Though he was never one of the church staff, he did an immense amount of quiet work, visiting the sick, hearing Confessions and consoling those in trouble. He was most self-sacrificing in trying to help others and those who knew him intimately will agree that he nearly always had some task on hand, a job to be got, an interview to be arranged, information to be got, and that he was indefatigable in his efforts and often very successful, owing to the large number of influential friends whom he had, both in Galway and elsewhere. Mention must also be made of his work for the choir, which he directed from 1932 onwards. He was not a great musician, though an adept at sight-reading, and his interest in music was somewhat limited - he did not seem to care much, for instance, for orchestral music - but his taste in church music was sound and he insisted on accuracy of performance.
It has become somewhat of a commonplace to say of those who die that they will be greatly missed, but the statement can be sincerely made about Fr. O'Farrell. For over thirty years he was a familiar figure in Galway, usually on his bicycle, waving a salute to the many friends whom he passed, and almost always bound on some altruistic errand. He had an intimate knowledge of the life of the city and often manifested a humorous enjoyment of the complications that arise in any closely-knit community, but his comments were always tempered by charity, and indeed he would often express almost scrupulous regret if he thought he had gone too far in criticism. It is not only in Galway itself that his loss will be felt, but also in the remote and beautiful region in Iar-Connacht where he spent so many holidays. His goodness of heart, combined with his extraordinarily perfect grasp of the Irish language, won for him over many years the esteem and affection of the people of Carraroe and the surrounding countryside, and during his visits there, there was hardly a day but some messenger would come asking that “an t-Athair Ó Fearghaill” would come to some humble home to console the sick or to advise on some family problem. In his last moments it must have been one of Fr. O'Farrell's greatest consolations to think that those whom he had so befriended would often have on their lips and in their hearts the familiar prayer: “Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam!”

O'Dempsey, Robert, 1893-1972, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/745
  • Person
  • 23 July 1893-01 February 1972

Born: 23 July 1893, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 19 September 1916, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1928, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Sacred Heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 01 February 1972, Ballingarry, Mullingar, County Westmeath

Part of the Tullabeg, Co Offaly community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1930 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

Seems he Entered 07 September 1911 then left in 1912 and then reentered in 19 September 1916

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 47th Year No 2 1972

Obituary :

Fr Robert O’Dempsey SJ (1893-1972)

Father Robert O'Dempsey was one of a family who for generations, from their big house on the outskirts of Enniscorthy, had played a prominent part in the life of Wexford, giving a series of professional men, teachers and religious to the county-men and women of more than ordinary ability and a tradition of selfless service. As a boy at Clongowes Father Robert held his own in a Rhetoric, which included the genius of Father Paul Healy and Ray OʻKelly, and the outstanding abilities of Gilbert Laithwaite, Tom Finlay and Father Paul O'Dea. True, from the first his outlook was not merely serious but tense, and sometimes meticulous. Probably modern Psychologists may register a doubt of the idea of a religious vocation with a long tradition of long and detailed training for such a character. That Father Robert's first attempt to be thus dedicated, resulted in real nervous tension would seem to confirm such an attitude. He had to leave the Noviceship with no prospect of return. Rejecting the professional studies to which other members of the family had devoted themselves, he chose to become an apprentice in Todd Burns Drapery business, explaining later that he wanted constant contact with people to counteract his tendency to introspection. He wanted also a way of life he would not find it a wrench to abandon, should he be re-established for a fresh start. He was, after an interval, and went back to begin all over again the trial of the Noviceship and this time to succeed.
The years in Dublin were happy ones, and they enabled him later, to bring practical experience to his aid in renewing the Clongowes Social Study Club, which had fallen on evil days. Indeed throughout his life he held and fostered principles of social justice only gradually coming to be accepted. These early delays precluded the academic opportunities of his brilliant contemporaries; but an exceptionally strong interest in mathematics and mechanical things - he was something of an expert in his hobby of railway development - enabled him to teach with great success in Clongowes and Belvedere for many years. When in 1962 with the closing of Tullabeg he closed his text books for the last time, it gave him real pleasure to know that one of his last students could write from Chantilly that, though his new professor had a world reputation “he's not a patch on Father Bob O'Dempsey”.
One of the last generation of pre-motor car men, Father O'Dempsey had a taste for long walks, often solitary, and observation that distinguished such men as Lloyd Praeger; he was seldom happier than when on a long tramp, as one who climbed Mweelrea and Errigal with him can testify. On one of the Wexford Villas of the early twenties, he and six companions rode from Gorey to the foot of Mount Leinster and climbing it, from that eminence surveyed the county he loved. That the local paper next day described him as the Leader of the Party of which in fact he was the Junior wasn't surprising, but the other members all surviving may recollect his amusing and delighted disclaimer, which the local journalism rejected.
For such a man the routine of a College like Belvedere, with not a blade of grass in its field of vision, and endless drab streets for “Morning Supplies" was not an ideal setting; nonetheless for many years he took not only his full share of class work, but also helped with Debates and other activities, notably in the staging of the most memorable of the Operas, which Father Glynn and Father Byrne produced.
Father O'Dempsey kept a small carefully selected stock of tools, and was always ready to put his skill with them to helpful use. He had an independent mind with an abiding hate of fashionable cant or meaningless cliché. A loyal old Clongownian, he abhorred all that goes with the “Old Tie” tradition. A true Patriot, he detested the “stage” Irishman and all that smacked of Jingoism. In the days when Telefis Eireann - then known as Radio Baile Atha Cliath poured out a succession of sentimental ballads he liked to refer to the Corporation as Radio Bla Bla! He insisted on the 'O' in O‘Dempsey, and was indeed as far removed as it is possible to imagine from the “Eloquent Dempsey”. In short absolute sincerity was his abiding gift.
It was perhaps unfortunate that for an interval in his latter years at Belvedere, the assignment to Bolton Street Technical School was less congenial, provoking stresses which happily, were dissipated by his term of teaching mathematics to the Philosophers at Tullabeg until the dispersal of the faculty there. The concluding years in Tullabeg left him somewhat forlorn, this occupation gone. As time passed he gave up the long cycle rides and even reading be came a burden.
It is a pity he does not seem ever to have put together, much less put in print, his knowledge of the history of the Wexford Rising, which was more detailed and accurate than that of many professional Historians. (His Grandfather had in fact been “out” in the ‘98 Rising). He was neither romantic nor dramatic in his approach, indeed he was almost mathematical in his pre-occupation with facts and the objectivity with which he assessed them was remarkable.
It was sheer strength of character that enabled his long life to be a story of severe mental trials, valiantly encountered, and a noble service done for God and his fellow men.

McEntee, Hugh F, 1887-1953, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1705
  • Person
  • 01 October 1887-21 August 1953

Born: 01 October 1887, Loughrea, County Galway
Entered: 05 May 1920, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 21 August 1953, Our Lady's Hospice, Dublin

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

Brother of Timothy McEntee - LEFT 1921

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Draper before entry

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 28th Year No 4 1953
Obituary :
Brother Hugh McEntee
When Brother McEntee went to hospital no one imagined that his health was to deteriorate the way it did. After a period of convalescence, he returned to Clongowes for a short time. We were surprised to see the great change in him. Clearly he had lost his customary vigour.
During this brief period, he could be seen making his way slowly along the corridor, trying to exercise himself that he might regain some of his previous energy to fit himself once more for his work as Sacristan, The boys, who always held him in high esteem, noticed his weakened condition and to members of the community they expressed their hope that Brother McEntee would soon be hale and hearty once again and be back in the Sacristy. But it was not to be, for despite further medical attention, he continually failed in health, finally in the Hospice of the Dying, on August 21st, he passed peacefully away, having received the Last Sacraments.
He was born at Loughrea on October 1st, 1887, and was educated there. As a young man he set up his own drapery business in the same town. After some time he sold out and came to Dublin where he was in employment at T. Lyons and Co., Wholesale Drapers, Chathan Row. Here he was remarkable for his piety and zeal, chiefly manifested by a striking devotion to the sick, as well as his constancy in assisting in the enrolment of large numbers of boys in the Brown Scapular. As regards. the latter devotion, he had great faith in the revelation to St. Simon Stock, namely, that those members of the Brown Scapular who died in the proper dispositions would be released from Purgatory on the Saturday following their death. Hence, it was that he prayed that he would die on a Friday, and his prayer was answered.
On May 5th, 1920, he entered the novitiate at Tullabeg. He remained at this house until 1927 when he was transferred to Clongowes. With the exception of the period 1938-1944 when he was in Mungret, Brother McEntee spent the rest of his religious life at Clongowes.
As Sacristan of the Boys' Chapel and the People's Church, he was a model of order, neatness and efficiency. He had a constant loyalty and an abiding interest in his work, and was always most obliging and charitable. The local boys, whom he had instructed in Mass-serving and as Benediction acolytes, were very devoted to him. The boys in the college looked upon him as a necessary part of Clongowes, where he was erroneously but affectionately known as “Brother McGinty”. A past pupil, now a priest in the Dublin Diocese, said that as a boy he was most impressed by the brother. This good priest confessed that in his public request for prayers to his congregation he unconsciously reverted to his student days and referred to “Brother McGinty”. No doubt, the good brother appreciated the slip.
Brother McEntee's earlier devotion to the sick revealed itself in is religious life by his thoughtfulness in sending Catholic booklets, leaflets and holy pictures to hospitals and orphanages, and these undoubtedly brought consolation and assistance to many souls.
May he rest in peace.

McGlade, Patrick, Kevin, 1891-1966, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/287
  • Person
  • 03 April 1891-13 August 1966

Born: 03 April 1891, Belfast, County Antrim
Entered: 07 September 1909, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 13 August 1966, Warrenpoint, County Down

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Had studied for a BA in Arts at UCD before entry.

by 1914 at Valkenburg Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
1925-1926 Tertianshiup at Exaeten

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Loose leaf note in CatChrn : Entitled “Left Stonyhurst for Castle Brown”
23 Oct 1815

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 42nd Year No 1 1967

Obituary :

Fr Patrick McGlade SJ (1891-1965)

Father Patrick McGlade was born in Belfast on April 3rd, 1891. He spent some years at St. Malachy's College, Belfast, before going to Clongowes where he spent five years as a boy. He entered the Society on September 7th, 1909. He studied as a Junior in Milltown Park. His philosophy was divided between Valkenburg (1913-14) and Stoneyhurst (1914-16). He returned to Clongowes for his regency from 1916-1921-filling the posts of Gallery Prefect and Lower Line Prefect the latter from 1917-21. He then went to Milltown Park for his theology and was ordained on July 31st, 1923. Tertianship was in Holland. The remainder of his life is divided as follows :
Clongowes : Prefect of Studies 1926-27, Prefect of Lower Line 1927-31. Crescent : Teaching 1931-33. Emo Park : Retreat Stafi. 1933-34. Clongowes : Teaching 1934-62.

I am glad to pay tribute to Father McGlade as a Line Prefect. As a young priest he was an extremely effective Lower Line Prefect in Clongowes, able to maintain the confident control which they need and like over boys of fifteen or sixteen, This was done without excessive severity, because his aim was not to produce a cowed, regimented, submissiveness, which might have made life easy for him. Discipline was never an end in itself he had some thing to give. Notably he engendered enthusiasm for photography, good literature and music. Silence in the library was insisted upon because he rightly judged that many boys relished that quiet refuge from the harassments of mob life. He took pains to develop taste in music, not merely to pander to immature standards; his dramatic scratching of the key across a low-grade gramophone record left an indelible impression on my mind as well as on the particular song. At this period he taught English - as he did for many years afterwards and managed to convey to a rather restless group some appreciation of the beauty, and power, of words. His own sermons and “declamations” were delivered in an immensely impressive, softly booming tone, and with an exquisite choice of words. They were invariably enjoyed.
What about games? He created, or directed, keenness for high standards in rugby, cricket, tennis, hurling and hockey, etc.; this without ever, to my knowledge, kicking a ball or handling a racket or bat. One felt, in spite of this, that he was thoroughly, un questionably competent. His performance as a rugby referee was accurate and stylish. But he commanded from an eminence; no one expected him to come down into the melee, indeed they would have been embarrassed if he had; he was riot to be jostled, Here again one learnt by experience that games vigorously and skilfully played were the most enjoyable.
There was a certain fascination about him, partly because at times he seemed aloof and formidable, indeed occasionally unpredictable. He was colourful, with a touch of the unorthodox about him; something of a character. I think he commanded almost universal respect. This he may not have realised, for he had a nick-name which he abhorred; it clearly embarrassed and irritated him; in fact it had no hostile or contemptuous under currents at all; it sprang simply from his very dark and determined jowl. For a while he was more commonly known only as “Paul” ; this is fixed in my mind by the memory of the death of the crease horse, “Paulina”, who was named after him, and collapsed so dramatically from excitement on the day that Col. Russell landed his plane on the cricket crease, about 1929.
But of course what gave him his exceptional influence was his ability to feel, and show, genuine personal interest in the boys and their groups. He had on those occasions a quizzical and humorous approach, which, coming from such a majestic figure, gave him the advantage of tactical surprise. But he never presumed or demanded intimacy or confidences, nor did he ever betray them. I am inclined to think, now, that he never knew how much people liked him. He was probably far more diffident about his personal relations than any boy ever suspected. He was an artist working in a rather difficult temperamental and emotional medium, always a hair's breadth away from disaster. He lived interiorly under strain; externally he presented an impregnable front. One sensed that he really delighted to see someone developing their own personality; he did not want to impose uniformity, nor did he want to know what everyone was doing all the time, above all he did not presume to think that if you were not enjoying yourself in the way he had organised for you, you could not be enjoying yourself at all; he did not intrude. He welcomed the signs of coming maturity, neither resenting the departure of childish charm nor expecting adult solemnity. God be thanked for his vital influence.

Healy, Paul, 1894-1934, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/182
  • Person
  • 24 February 1894-09 March 1934

Born: 24 February 1894, Dublin
Entered: 01 February 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg County Offaly
Ordained: 26 March 1924, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Glenaulin Nursing Home, Glenaulin, Chapelizod, Dublin
Died: 09 March 1934, Milltown Park, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Ordained by special permission of the Holy See at Milltown Park 26 March 1924
by 1914, at Wentworth Falls, New South Wales, Australia.
by 1930 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Paul Healy entered the Society at the age of sixteen at Tullabeg, and appears to have suffered from consumption, as he was sent to Loyola Greenwich to study for his juniorate. After three years of study, 1915-17, he began to teach in the juniorate for three years as his regency. He returned to Ireland in 1920. His time in Australia certainly helped but did not cure his tuberculosis.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 9th Year No 3 1934
Milltown Park :
Death took two of our number within a week -
Father Tunney died on the 5rd of March. His death was not unexpected. Some heart attacks in recent weeks had prepared us for it.
Father Healy's death came as a great shock, for though he had long been a sick man, he was optimistic of becoming stronger, and worked away quietly as director of Retreats in the province for most of this year, censoring, and reviewing books. Few suspected how near death was. He was at Father Tunney's office in Gardiner Street the 6th of March. He said Mass as usual on Friday the 9th. While sitting down to lunch about 12,30 he felt ill and was helped to a chair in the Fathers' library. There a slight hemorrhage occurred and he lost consciousness, not before receiving Absolution, He was anointed, then borne to his room where he died at about 1.15. The doctor arrived before he died, but nothing could be done. Father S. MacMahon writes an obituary notice on Father Healy in this number.

Irish Province News 9th Year No 3 1934

Obituary :

Father Paul Healy

From Father S. MacMahon
On the base of the rugged block of granite which marks one of the graves in Glasnevin Cemetery, the following words are to be read : “If there is one thing which I and mine have got a grip of, it is the belief in the Infinite Christ to come”. The words are an extract from a memorable profession of faith made by the man whose remains rest beneath, awaiting the coming of that “Infinite Christ.” And not far away, in the same cemetery, lies the body of one of those whom the speaker described as “mine” - his son, Father Paul Healy.
When Paul Healy was ordained priest at Milltown Park on March the 26th, 1924, not even the most sanguine of his friends could have ventured to hope that there were nearly ten years of life still before him. On account of his delicate health, he had been sent to Australia after his noviceship and when, after six years there, he returned to Ireland for his Philosophy, he was improved, but not cured. The improvement did not last long. Soon after he had begun his Theology, in the autumn of 1923, a petition was made to the Holy See to permit his being ordained before completing the necessary period of study, in order that, before he should die, he might have the privilege of saying Mass, and his parents the consolation of having a son a priest. This exceptional favour was granted and he was ordained before completing one year's Theology. After ordination he made a pilgrimage to Lourdes and returned to Milltown Park to continue his Theology, greatly improved in health. The remaining ten years of his life were spent largely in study. For a time he was well enough to profess Psychology and History of Philosophy at Tullabeg. From 1931 on he was at Milltown Park, and seemed to be growing stronger. Very shortly before his death he expressed the hope that he would soon be able to give a Triduum. But a sudden hemorrhage took place on March the 9th, 1934, and within an hour Father Healy was dead.
Only those who knew him well could appreciate the extent of the loss which his death inflicted on the Irish Province. For his was very truly a hidden life. As a novice in Tullabeg he preached a May sermon of such compelling eloquence as to make his audience - Tertians included - forget the meal they had come to take. As a Philosopher and a Theologian, he showed a grasp of profound problems so masterly and a power of exposition so lucid as to justify professors and examiners in prophesying for him a high place in the roll of deservedly distinguished men of thought. To these qualities he added a sanity of judgment and an appreciation of realities, while his keen sense of humour saved him from being ponderous or pedantic. But the occasions on which his brilliant gifts were publicly manifested were comparatively few and, particularly during the last years of his life, though his work was important and responsible, the worker was not conspicuous.
Yet for those who knew him, he is memorable, not so much for his gifts of intellect as for the intensity of feeling - rarely revealed, for he was not a demonstrative man - the unobtrusive piety, the depth of conviction, the “grip of the belief in the Infinite Christ”, which carried him brave and uncomplaining through the long years when delicate health held in fetters unusual ability and imposed the bond of silence on a voice that might have enlightened many minds and moved many hearts. The burden of ill health can make a man hard, selfish or inert. Father Healy was none of these. He could be firm, but his gentleness was a notable feature. If he could do anything to help another, it was done, without fuss. The burden of a great mind can make a man proud. Father Healy was humble and simple. As a boy in Clongowes (he went there from Belvedere) he was in the habit of spending a long time in the College Chapel during free recreation, but accepted readily from a kindly (and vigilant) scholastic the suggestion that recreation in the open air would keep him fit for study, and so be pleasing to God. He showed the same spirit years afterwards when a Minister suggested that he should light his fire on a raw winter day. “Do you think so?” he said, and complied at once. He was an accomplished musician, but did not grudge the time and trouble needed to play over repeatedly a piece on the piano for a fellow-scholastic whose bungling attempts at a song must have been a sore trial to him. His classmates in Philosophy still remember the occasional shaking of the bench at which he sat due to the silent laughter, which would assail him at some unconsciously humorous remark by a professor. These are, perhaps minor details, but they contribute to a picture, which, meagre as it is, affords the writer a welcome opportunity of paying a sincere tribute to the memory of a friend.

The concluding paragraph of Mr. T. M, Healy's speech at Westminster during the debate on the second reading of the Education Bill (May, 1906) :
I would rather that my children understood their religion in preparation for the eternity that is to come, than that they should be rich, prosperous and educated people of this world.
I care very little for your so-called education. I cannot spell myself. I cannot parse an , English sentence. I cannot do the rule of three. I am supposed to know a little law, but I think that is a mistake. But there is one thing that I and mine have got a grasp of, and that is a belief in the Infinite Christ to come, and a belief that our children, whatever be their distress, whatever be their misfortunes whatever be their poverty in this world, will receive a rich reward, if, listening to the teaching of their faith, they put into practice the lessons they receive in the Catholic schools”.
1894 Father P. Healy was born in Dublin, 24th February
1912 Began Noviceship in Tullabeg 1st February
1915 Tullabeg, Novice
1914 Loyola (Sydney)
1920 Milltown Park, Philosophy
1923 Milltown Park, Theology
1927 Milltown Park, Studet privatim
1927 Milltown Park, Sub-min. Doc. etc
In 1929 he did as much Tertianship as he could at St Beuno’s, and then went to Tullabeg, where he professed Philosophy. 1931 saw him once more at Milltown. He died Friday, 9th
March, 1934.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Paul Healy SJ 1894-1934
Fr Paul Healy was the son of the famous Tim Healy, 1st Governor General of the Irish Free State. He was born in Dublin in 1894. He was so delicate in health, that by a special decree of the Holy See, he was ordained shortly after beginning his Theology in 1923, so that he might have the joy of saying one Mass before he died and bringing consolation to his parents.

He lived for 10 years after and he improved in health sufficiently to profess Philosophy in Tullabeg. He was remarkably gentle in speech and manner, deeply religious, retaining throughout his life that piety, which as a boy in Clongowes sent him into the chapel during free recreation.

He certainly fulfilled the wish that his father expressed in the British House of Commons in the debate on the Education Bill : “I would rather that my children understood their religion in preparation for the eternity to come than that they should be prosperous and educated people of the world. There is one thing that I an mine have a grasp of, and that is a belief in the infinite Christ to come”.

McNamee, Laurence, 1896-1977, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/296
  • Person
  • 16 April 1896-25 August 1977

Born: 16 April 1896, Rhode, County Offaly
Entered: 11 December 1920, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 25 August 1977, Jervis Street Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Manresa, Dollymount, Dublin community at themtime of death

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Chauffeur before entry

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 52nd Year No 4 1977

Having lost two members of our community as a result of the status we suffered a more lasting loss on August 25 when Brother Laurence McNamee died suddenly. He had been mildly unwell for a few days but was up and about and quite well enough to entertain his sister a Cross & Passion nun. Brother John Loftus was driving the sister back to her convent in Glandore Rd and Bro Laurence went also for the drive; at the bottom of Griffith Ave, he collapsed; Bro Loftus rang for an ambulance immediately and Fr Dargan rushed to Jervis St Hospital to anoint Bro Laurence; officially he was dead on admission.
When one thinks of Bro Laurence one is reminded of Mary Purcell's life of Blessed Peter Fabre ... The Quiet Companion; so gently and so quietly and so prayerfully did he pass his last years.
Fr Ambrose McNamee, O Carm. (nephew) was chief concelebrant at the Requiem Mass in Gardiner St.

Irish Province News 56th Year No 3 1981


Br Laurence McNamee (1896-1920-1977)

A great worker. He said the one time he was tempted to leave the Society was when he was sent to Emo to get the place ready for the novices and was then told to do nothing as the contract of sale had not yet been signed. Earlier in Tullabeg he looked after the car. Bringing back three novices (after their appendicitis operations in St Vincent's hospital on Stephen’s Green) from Tullamore, the car lost a wheel just after crossing a bridge near the gate of Charleville castle. He promptly took one nut off each of the other wheels and fixed the wandering wheel to bring the novices safely back to Tullabeg. Back in Tullabeg during the war, he looked after the 'gig' or 'back-to back' which in those petrol-starved days carried Jesuits to and from Tullamore and the train. He took the same care of the horse as he did previously of the motor-car, with the result that the steed grew fat and kicked.

McGrath, Fergal P, 1895-1988, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/453
  • Person
  • 18 November 1895-02 January 1988

Born: 18 November 1895, Dublin
Entered: 06 October St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1927, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 02 January 1988, St Ignatius, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Studied for a BA in French and German as a Junior

by 1918 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1929 at Valkenburg, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) making Tertianship
by 1945 at Campion Hall, Oxford (ANG) studying
by 1949 Fordham, NY USA (NEB) making Tertianship

Irish Province News 1st Year No 1 1925
We may mention here a school story recently published – “The Last Lap.” Its author is Mr. Fergal McGrath, SJ. The book, which was mostly written while the author was a scholastic in Clongowes, has had an enthusiastic reception. The Reviewer in the " Ecclesiastical Review " writes of it : “It is a splendid boys' story. Probably neither Fr. Finn, or Fr. Spalding nor Fr. Boylan has told any better”.

Irish Province News 1st Year No 3 1926
Mr Fergal McGrath's “Last Lap” has been translated into Spanish. Much difficulty was experienced in finding Spanish equivalent for such phrases as : “getting his eye in”, “the calculating pig”, etc,

Irish Province News 10th Year No 2 1935
Works by Father Fergal McGrath SJ :

  1. “The Last Lap” - Pub. Benziger Bros., N. York and the Talbot
  2. “L'Ultima Tappa” - Italian translation of the above by Father Celestine Testore, S.]., , pub. Marietta, Rome, 1929
  3. “Adventure Island” - Pub. Benziger Bros., N. York and the Talbot Press, Dublin, 1952. School edition pub by Talbot Press, 1954, sanctioned by Board of Education for Higher Standards of Primary Schools.
  4. “Un Drama en Irelande” - French translation of above by M du Bourg. Pub. Editions du Closer, Tours, 1934
  5. “Christ in the World of To-day” - Pub. Gill & Son, 1933 (Lenten Lectures on the Sacred Heart)
  6. “Mother Catherine McAuley” - (Biographical sketch contributed to The Irish Way) Pub. Sheed & Ward, 1932
  7. “The Beefy Saint” - Pub. Irish Catholic Truth Society (a story for boys)
  8. “Canon Hannigan’s Martyrdom: - Pub. Irish Messenger Series, (A story of Irish clerical life)
  9. “The Catholic Church in Sweden” - (Edited) English C.T.S
  10. “Stories of the Twelve Promises of the Sacred Heart” - (In collaboration) Irish Messenger Series, “Tenement Angel”.

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 4 1948
Fr. Fergal McGrath sailed from Cobh on 24th September for New York ; he will be lecturing in Fordham University in the coming year.

Irish Province News 63rd Year No 2 1988


Fr Fergal McGrath (1895-1913-1988)

Born in Dublin [on 18th November 1895) and educated in Clongowes (1908 12], Fergal McGrath was so dedicated to the Society, which he joined in 1913 on 6th October, after taking First Arts in UCD), that it is impossible to imagine him in any other way of life. He was very proud of his family, particularly of the involvement of his father, Sir Joseph McGrath, in the development of Irish university education, and as he became in his turn the patriarch, his love for the younger generations was evident in the quiet, almost shy, allusions which he made to his nephews and nieces.
Having taken a BA at University College, Dublin [1917], and studied philosophy in both Stonyhurst (1917-'8] and Milltown Park (1920-'2], he taught in Belvedere (1918-'20] and Clongowes [1922-24] before beginning theology at Milltown in 1924. [He was ordained a priest on 31st July 1927.] Fr Fergal's tertianship was made at 's Heerenberg in the Netherlands, which was then a house of the Lower German Jesuit province. He found that tertianship dragged a bit towards the end and he was happy to return to Ireland and to Rathfarnham as Minister of Juniors in 1929. Fr Fergal became Rector of Clongowes in 1933, at a very important phase in the growth of the school, and remained in office until 1941, when he went to Gardiner street as Superior. Four years of study in Oxford, where he took a D. Phil., Occupied his years until 1948 and he spent a further year studying education at Fordham university in New York, Returning to Ireland, Fr Fergal was made Rector of St Ignatius, Galway, where he remained until 1953. Leaving the West, he moved to Leeson street as a writer and spiritual father, until he began his last superiorship as Rector of Rathfarnham in 1961. From 1967 to 1972, he lived at Loyola House. Leeson street was his final Jesuit home. Fr Fergal was Province Archivist from 1975 until 1986, but remained Custodian of the strongroom, dealing with researchers and with many written queries until he went to hospital early in December 1987. He died on 2nd January 1988.
Fergal McGrath was a writer, a Jesuit superior, a good friend to many people all over Ireland, with a vast correspondence and with an interest in everything. He could write scholarly books, short stories, novels of school life and many pamphlets and newspaper articles. He wrote with the same care and precision which he brought to everything he did.
There was no haste, but much prudence. He once said, rather unnecessarily, to somebody who knew him very well '”s you know, I'm a cautious man'” He gave himself heart and soul to any task assigned to him.
Blessed with a very strong constitution and with what seemed to be an inherent ability to avoid stress, Fr Fergal was remarkable in his adherence to a personal daily routine. He had great respect for his fellow Jesuits and found it hard to say anything even remotely harsh about anybody. Most of his experiences as a superior seemed to have been happy, but he never discussed any of the difficulties which must have cropped up in those years, such as the hardships incur red while building at Clongowes and the unease at being a superior in formation during what are known as the 'turbulent' 1960s. In a life which lasted for 92 years, there were obviously disappointments and 'might-have-beens', but Fr Fergal never referred to them. He was quite free from resentment and never wasted time by cultivating hurts. He recognised that the past had not been perfect and, with complete trust in the Lord, got on with the task in hand. This attitude made him a surprisingly free person, because first impressions could be of a man bound by many self-imposed rules.
It was this inner freedom, combined with his respect for others, which drew so many people to him. The person to whom he probably felt closest all his life was a man who died almost fifty-five years before he himself did - Fr John Sullivan. A biography was one sign of his devotion to Fr John's cause; another was his slide-show, of which there were both long and short versions. I remember a conversation in which he made an unconscious slip by referring to “St John Sullivan” and went on talking, unaware of how much he had revealed in that brief anticipation of the Church's judgement. He also did tremendous work for the Cause of Mother Mary Aikenhead.
Despite the long and very slow decline in his energies, Fr Fergal's last years in Leeson street were undoubtedly some of his happiest. As his long daily walk along the Stillorgan road was gradually reduced to a stroll in the back garden, as he became more and more grateful for the lift in the house, he gave the impression of great happiness, because he felt himself among a group of brothers in the Lord, who both cared for him and esteemed him. He lived to become the longest-serving member of the Province.
There were many changes in the Society which Fr Fergal accepted, but which he hardly understood and of which he did not fully approve, but here, once again, his obedience and his deep sense of commitment as a religious took him across hurdles at which he might have fallen. Fr Fergal was intelligent and was a liberal in the Edwardian sense of the word. Patience was one of his strongest suits and stood him in good stead on many an occasion when he might have been driven wild with exasperation, as when unpunctual scholars kept him waiting for hours after they were due to examine documents in the archives.
His radio was a prized and well-used object. Even at 92, Fr Fergal found that a session with his clarinet was a good way to relax and he never felt called to make major adjustments for the television era. His devotions took up an increasingly large part of his day and it was obvious that he was very close to the Lord. In somebody so accomplished, so well known that he received an honorary doctorate from UCD as recently as 1982, there was a profound vein of humility, as I discovered one morning when he amazed me by asking for my advice about some point in the Divine Office.
We worked together in the archives for several years. Having known many of the men whose papers are preserved in the Leeson Street strong-room, he was an invaluable source of advice. No question from me was made to seem silly, no letter from any enquirer was too demanding to merit his full attention.
I treasure casual remarks Fr Fergal made, such as “I don't remember Fr X, but I do recall the old men talking about him” or his stories about mishaps during a juniorate villa at Monkstown, Co Dublin, during the first world war. He spoke little about his own accomplishments, such as his classical learning and his good command of Irish, but he did pass on jocular pieces of advice, such as a piece of consolation he had been given in 1933, when somebody told him that “being a rector isn't too bad - there are even whole days when you'll forget that you're a rector at all”.
A quick glance around his room told the story of Fr Fergal's life better than any biography. His chimneypiece was lined with photographs of his family, of fellow Jesuits and of the present Pope. There was one small bookshelf and, piled beside it, boxes of papers relating to Fr John Sullivan. His wardrobe contained a few, well-worn clothes and his Jesuit gown hung on the back of his door. The attention of any visitor would be drawn to the most prominent object in the room: a desk, laden with letters from all over Ireland and abroad, with books which he was reading as possible material for the refectory and with a Latin Office-book placed close to his armchair.
Fr Fergal's last illness was mercifully brief. His sense of humour showed itself to the end, as he responded to a plea not to die in 1987 and thereby destroy the Province's death-free record for that year. When I last saw him, the day before his death, he was sleeping peace fully, his face serene. A well-lived life was drawing to its earthly close. It was a life in which many people were blessed with his friendship and I am very grateful for having been one of them.
Fergus O'Donoghue, SJ

Fr Fergal McGrath: Incomplete bibliography of his works
“Adventure Island “(Dublin and New York, 1932). “Tenement Angel and Other Stories “(Dublin, 1934). “The Last Lap “(Dublin, 1925; Italian translation “L'ultima Tappa”, Turin "and Rome, 1929; French translation “Au Dernier Tour”, Paris, (no date).
“The Consecration of Learning”: lectures on Newman's Idea of a university (Dublin and New York, 1962). “Education in Ancient and Mediaeval Ireland” (Dublin, 1979). “Newman's University: Idea and Reality” (Dublin, 1951). “The university question” in “A History of Irish Catholicism”, vol. V, pp. 84-142 (Dublin, 1971).
Christian doctrine: Christ in the world of today (Dublin, 1933). Life in Christ (Dublin, 1957).
Biography: Father John Sullivan, S.J. (Dublin, 1941).
Biographical articles:
“Catherine McAuley” in “The Irish Way”, edited by F.J. Sheed, pp. 244-'62 (London, 1932). “The conversion” in “A Tribute to Newman”, edited by Michael Tierney, pp. 57 83 (Dublin, 1945). “The Background to Newman's Idea of a University” in “The Month”, July-August 1945, vol. 181, no. 946, pp. 247-'58.
“Father John Sullivan SJ” (Dublin, 1942). “Newman in Dublin” (Dublin, 1969). “Youth Guidance” (Dublin, 1944). “James A Cullen SJ : A modern Apostle of the Sacred Heart” (Dublin, 1980).

Hayes, Jeremiah, 1896-1976, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/180
  • Person
  • 08 February 1896-21 January 1976

Born: 08 February 1896, Davis Street, Tipperary Town
Entered: 01 September 1913, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 29 July 1928, Oña, Burgos, Spain
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 21 January 1976, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

Editor of An Timire, 1931-36.

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1927 at Oña, Burgos, Castile y León, Spain (CAST) studying
by 1929 at Comillas, Santander, Spain (LEG) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 51st Year No 2 1976

Rathfarnham Castle
The happy death of Fr Jerry Hayes took place on Wednesday, 21st January. Though he showed signs of failing for some six weeks and knew that the end was fast approaching, he was in full possession of his mental faculties up to about ten days before he quietly passed away at about 3 pm in the afternoon with Br Keogh’s finger on the ebbing pulse until its last beat. For Br Keogh it was the end of thirty-three years of devoted care and skilful nursing and a patience which never wavered. For Fr Hayes it was happy release from a whole life-time of suffering heroically borne. Br Joe Cleary, who took over with Br Keogh for about the last six years, rendered a service which Fr Hayes himself described as heroic. Despite his sufferings and his physical incapacity, Fr Hayes lived a full life of work and prayer and keen interest in the affairs of the Society and the Church and of the world, and of a very wide circle of intimate friends with whom he maintained regular contact either by correspondence or by timely visits to them in their homes or convents, We have no doubt that the great reward and eternal rest which he has merited will not be long deferred. Likewise, we considered it wise and fitting, that the necessary rest and well deserved reward of their labours should not be long deferred in the case of those who rendered Fr Hayes such long and faithful service. This we are glad to record Brs Keogh and Cleary have. since enjoyed in what Br Keogh has described as a little bit of heaven.
As one may easily imagine, Rathfarnham without Fr Jerry Hayes is even more empty than it was. Yet, we feel that he is still with us and will intercede for us in the many problems which our situation presents both in the present and in the future. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis!

Obituary :

Fr Jeremiah Hayes (1896-1976)

Jeremiah Hayes was born at Davis Street, Tipperary on 8th Feb, 1896, the eldest of a family of two brothers and two sisters. His early education, from 1902 to 1911, was with the Christian Brothers in his native town, and he came to Clongowes for the Middle and Senior Grades of the Intermediate system. As a boy, he showed that ability and industry which marked him in later life, winning prizes in all the four grades. In 1913 he entered the noviciate at Tullabeg.
Fr Jerry Hayes’s life falls naturally into two periods, his active years up to his ordination, and the long martyrdom of the ensuing forty-seven years, which he was to bear with such heroic courage. His life as a scholastic was not marked by any very outstanding event, but the few of his contemporaries who have outlived him recall that it was full of quiet and constant activity which seemed to foreshadow a most fruitful priestly life. He was a remarkably steady, conscientious worker, took a good honours degree at the end of his juniorate in 1919, and was one of the keenest students in the ensuing three years of philosophy at Milltown Park. The writer repeated philosophy with him during two of these years, and has a clear recollection of his diligence, thoroughness and sound grasp of the subject.
His three years of teaching in Belvedere were marked by the same characteristics of quiet diligence and devotion to the work in hand. He used to recall that it was during those years that he developed a taste which was afterwards to be a great source of consolation to him. He had always been fond of music - he had a pleasant tenor voice and read music well - but it was in Belvedere that one of his fellow-scholastics introduced him to classical music, for which he had previously had no understanding
At his own request - he had always had a love of foreign languages - he was sent for theology to Oña in Spain. Life there cannot have been too easy for him. The only member of his own Province with him was Fr John Hollis, of what was then the Australian mission, and they must have felt rather lost in the immense Spanish community. Having successfully completed three years of the higher course and been ordained in 1929, he completed his fourth year at the Pontifical University, Comillas, Santander. It was about this time that the symptoms appeared of the arthritis which was so soon to cripple him. He returned to Rathfarnham Castle, and there he passed the rest of his life as a semi-invalid.
Another, and better qualified fellow-Jesuit will speak of the ensuing years. The present writer will merely briefly record that he spent ten years under the same roof as Fr Jerry. The first four were 1929-33, at the very outset of his long trial, the last six were 1961-67, when the end was not so far off, During those very considerable periods, he displayed courage and resignation to God's will which, even at the time, were remarkable, but which, viewed in retrospect, are truly heroic. He had obviously, from the beginning, determined to accept generously the Cross laid upon him, to show no quarter to the demon of self-pity, and to live as perfect a religious life as was possible in his very helpless state,
He was helped in this task by his natural characteristic of methodical diligence. The day was conscientiously marked out, with time for his Mass, his office, his rosary and other prayers, his visits to the Blessed Sacrament, his correspondence, and the various small, but useful tasks which he managed to deal with, in particular the necessary, but thankless work of censorship for publication. It was notable that, unlike many other invalids, he seemed to be much more interested in the joys and sorrows of other people than in his own, and he was always delighted to get news about the doings of members of the Province or other friends of his.
He had, undoubtedly, some very great helps, the devotion of his infirmarians, the outings so willingly provided by the Juniors and friends, and, most of all, his ability to say Mass almost to the end. Yet, over the immense span of forty-seven years, there must have been many periods of depression, times when the problem of his almost helpless existence must have presented itself with cruel insistence, Fr Jerry Hayes was not naturally an extrovert. One did not hear him frequently expressing in words his resignation to God's will or the vivid faith which enabled him to fulfil his religious duties so faithfully under such dis heartening difficulties. But his life, as a whole, was more eloquent than any words, and will long be a source of inspiration and courage to those who were privileged to know him.

Br Edward Keogh writes:
A month after Fr Hayes's death, I am at a loss to set down something you would listen to and read. My trouble is, in talking about such a wonderful life as he led amongst us during all these years, to know where to begin. You would fancy that after thirty-three years I would have no difficulty in giving an account of what was my almost daily contact with him; but the problem is that there is so much I could say about that long period that my difficulty is to make a suitable selection of what I should say, and tell what struck us most about this wonderful man. What am I to say about the man, the priest, with whom I was privileged to be so closely associated during the long years of his trying illness?
Fr Hayes in my estimation was one of whom we can be proud, one of the real “greats”, to use a modern term. We can speak of him in the same way as we do of Fr John Sullivan, or Fr Michael Browne, or indeed many others whom we have all known. The Irish Province today can feel proud of the formation it has given men of the calibre of Fr Jeremiah Hayes. How one man during all those years could bear such a heavy cross will remain a mystery, and an inspiration to the whole Province, If I were asked to give an opinion of what kept Fr Hayes going, I would pick out one fact primarily: the fact that he was able to say Mass almost daily. Birrell I think it was who said “It is the Mass that matters”, and it was the Mass that enabled Fr Hayes to carry on his deeply spiritual life. Through the Mass he was able to exercise his apostolic work par excellence. After his Mass, he had his day ordered in such a way as to express that independence which every man so dearly cherishes and likes to have a little of in his life. He took a great interest in his tropical fish, his canary, and above all his daily routine of work and prayer. His little trips with Mr Shannon were so much enjoyed and even looked forward to: they helped him to see the outside world.
I could in fact, had I the skill, write a book on all the various little incidents of his life which keep crowding into one's mind during these days after his death. One quality he had was imperturbability. On one occasion we put him into the old St Vincent's hospital. Against our advice, he decided to leave hospital, in his wheelchair, by way of the front steps. Horror! The chair proved too much for the person who was charged with the task of getting it down the steps, and bump, bump, went the chair down the pavement. All poor Fr Hayes was able to do was to break into a broad grin. Everything was a story.
I should mention the devotion of what he liked to call his “charioteers”, the scholastics who so unselfishly brought him on outings or individual trips around the district.
I began caring for Fr Hayes about January 1943, and strangely enough, by God's providence, Br Cleary and I were with him until his last moments in January when he passed to his eternal reward. A realist to the end, he recognised the fact of the imminence of his death, and was entirely resigned to the Will of God in this regard. In a weak voice he asked me how much further he had to go. I answered him quietly that only God knows that. His actual passing was very peaceful, at five minutes to three in the afternoon of 21st January, 1976. Throughout his last hours he looked utterly tranquil, and it could be said of him, truly and literally, that he fell asleep in the Lord.

Glanville, William, 1900-1984, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/165
  • Person
  • 23 November 1900-06 February 1984

Born: 23 November 1900, Rosses Point, County Sligo
Entered: 08 June 1919, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1931, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 06 February 1984, North Infirmary Hospital, Cork

Part of Clongowes Wood College SJ community, County Kildare at time of his death.
Grew up Carrigaholt, County Clare

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 59th Year No 3 1984
Br William Glanville (1900-1919-1984)
Br Glanville's father was a lighthouse keeper who married twice. Of the first marriage there were two children, our Br William being one of these. The first wife was an O’Malley from Co Galway, whose brother was MP for East Galway - not that Br Glanville ever imparted this piece of information. He was born at Rosses Point outside Sligo. In the second family there were sixteen children, and apparently the second Mrs. Glanville was very kind to all the children, and remembered by Br Glanville with deep gratitude and affection.
They moved to Carrigaholt, west Clare, when he was very young, and it was from there that he entered the noviciate at Tullabeg in 1919 at the age of nineteen. Early in his Jesuit life he spent ten years at Rathfarnham Castle from the mid-twenties, when the Australian Jesuits were attending the university. He acted as cook in other houses until the early 'fifties, when he was assigned to Clongowes as sacristan, a position that suited him and which he really loved. He remained at Clongowes for the last thirty-one years of his life in the Society; thirty-one happy years for him and for Clongowes.
His sudden death, while not unexpected by the community, has nevertheless left them with a genuine sense of loss, because they liked him and respected him for his qualities and his admirable example as a Jesuit. To the Clongowes community he is naturally associated with the sacristy and floral decorations with his own peculiar touch fitting for the occasion. They still remember his footsteps in the early morning about 4.30 on his way to the People's church; they remember him day after day in his own corner in the domestic chapel quietly saying his prayers; they remember his quips and asides during the early dinner; but above all they remember his quiet, unassuming, gentle manner. He was a very shy man, and yet a man who thoroughly enjoyed life - after his own fashion.
He kept a few letters all his life including one from Br Kevin Bracken (brother of the famous Brendan Bracken) who wrote to him from Australia in 1923. Two letters he treasured were from Captains of the school who wrote thanking him for all his trouble in making the altar so beautiful for some celebrated occasion. His three remaining sisters who live in the United States were his regular confidantes about his health and Irish affairs of interest to them.
For a man so timid and shy it's amazing how many friends he made over the years. These friends wrote to him constantly; he visited them from time to time, and never forgot their birthdays. . He enjoyed meeting people on his weekly train journey, and would often on the following day recall with a chuckle remarks that had been passed. The ticket-collector, for example, on the Dublin-Cork train always presented him with tea - gratis. More than once this same man drove him to his home at Mallow, and arranged that on his days off his substitute would have tea ready for Br Glanville. Towards the very end he found the train trips hard, but was determined to keep on his feet as long as possible. On Friday, 2nd March, he selected Cork as his journey's end and took the train there. After arriving at Glanmire station, he was walking slowly towards the city centre when he collapsed on the side walk. A number of people came to his assistance, one of them being a nurse, who noticed that his heart had stopped, Some time later an undertaker arrived on the scene and managed to get the heart going again. An ambulance took him to the North Infirmary hospital (near the bells of Shandon). However, there in the coronary care, unit the staff were convinced that damage had already been done to the brain. The Daughters of Charity, who run the North Infirmary, were very kind and attentive. He never regained consciousness, and died peace fully about 7 pm on Tuesday, 6th March.
The large gathering at his requiem Mass at Clongowes on the Thursday was certainly a tribute to Br William, Practically all the Brothers of the Province arrived, and particularly notice able was the number of priests who con celebrated. Br Glanville would have loved it all. It was a beautifully fine day with good sunshine, and with their guard of honour the boys did him proud. It was a fitting finale to sixty-five years' service as a Jesuit in the Irish province. May the What does it mean to be a Jesuit? The Lord be good to him.

O'Kelly, Patrick H, 1897-1968, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/337
  • Person
  • 18 March 1896-22 July 1968

Born: 18 March 1896, Baltinglass, County Wicklow
Entered: 13 August 1913, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1927, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, Chiesa del Gesù, Rome Italy
Died: 22 July 1968, Coláiste Iognáid, Sea Road, Galway

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Studied for BSc at UCD

by 1929 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship
by 1930 at Rome Italy (ROM) studying

◆ Jesuits in Ireland :

JESUITICA: The flies of Ireland
Only one Irish Provincial has had a genus of flies called after him. In 1937 Fr Larry Kieran welcomed Fr Hermann Schmitz, a German Jesuit, to Ireland, and he stayed here for about four years, teaching in Tullabeg and doing prodigious research on Irish Phoridae, or flies. He increased the known list of Irish Phoridae by more than 100 species, and immortalised Fr Larry by calling a genus after him: Kierania grata. Frs Leo Morahan and Paddy O’Kelly were similarly honoured, Leo with a genus: Morahanian pellinta, and Paddy with a species, Okellyi. Hermann served Irish entomologists by scientifically rearranging and updating the specimens of Phoridae in our National Museum. He died in Germany exactly fifty years ago.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 43rd Year No 4 1968

St. Ignatius College, Galway
Our Community has seen sad days since the last issue of “Province News”. Fathers O'Connor, Hutchinson and Brennan had severe heart attacks which necessitated for each a long stay in hospital. Father Andrews, on his return from Spain, was very ill and went into hospital. And Father Butler is in hospital after an appendix operation.
The saddest news of all, however, was the death of two members of our community, Father P. O'Kelly and Brother Foley. Father Kelly's death was sudden and unexpected. On Monday, 22nd July, when he did not turn up for the 6.50 a.m. Mass, Brother Bonfield went to his room and found him dead in his chair. A note in the “History of the House”, in his own hand, dated the 22nd July, leads to the conclusion that he died in the early hours of that morning. On Sunday 21st he seemed to be in the best of form, had his usual swim (or swims), his usual trips on the bike, and in the evening took the Bona Mors Devotions. Little knowing that the prayers were for himself he said the usual three Hail Marys for the person in the congregation who was next to die. His death has left an unfillable gap in the Community. “We shall not see his like again”. But it was surely the death Father Paddy would have chosen for himself - a labourer in the Lord's vineyard, working on and on, right up to the eleventh hour. Messages of sympathy poured in from all sides, among them, one from His Lordship the Bishop, and one from the County Council. All day long, for two days, the doorbell kept ringing as Mass Cards were handed in and the pile grew steadily.
When Brother Foley's death came so soon after Father O'Kelly's funeral and the church bell tolled again, people showed deep sympathy for the community. Mass cards piled up again, a sign that, in spite of his enforced retirement, over the years, his old friends had not forgotten him.
Both funerals were large and impressive. The town's people were there in great numbers to pay their last tribute, and Fathers and Brothers from all over the Province came to be present at the last sad rites. Many of Father O'Kelly's and Brother Foley's relatives were at the Mass and at the graveside. Fr. G. Perrott (Rector at the time) came all the way from Achill to say the Requiem
Mass for Father O'Kelly and was present at both funerals. Fr. V. McLaughlin was Celebrant at the Mass for Brother Foley. Reciting the last prayers at the burial of Father O'Kelly was Rev. Father Provincial, Father Barry and at Brother Foley's burial the prayers were said by Father C. McGarry, Father Barry's successor as Provincial. Ar laimh dheis De go raibh a n-anama.

Obituary :

Fr Patrick H O’Kelly SJ (1896-1968)

Fr. Patrick O'Kelly was born in 1896 at Baltinglass. He was the son of Mr. E. P. O'Kelly, M.P. for Wicklow, and was one of a family of nine, of whom four, himself and three sisters, entered religion.
He went from the local National School to Clongowes in 1908 and spent five years there. Though he did not achieve any very notable distinction, he was above average in all departments of school life. He was awarded a book prize in the mathematical group in all the grades of the Intermediate examinations, Junior, Middle and Senior. He was useful at all games, but the only athletic achievement of his which is on record is second place in the Lower Line walking race at the Easter sports of 1911. Strange to say, this minor event is engraved on the memory of the writer after all these years. The race took place most unsuitably immediately after a “full feed”, and Paddy's superhuman efforts had catastrophic after-effects. Paddy entered the novitiate at Tullabeg in 1913, took his vows in 1915 and spent four years in the juniorate at Rathfarnham. His mental powers developed greatly at this period and, with that remarkable power of application and exactness of mind which characterised him in after life, he had no difficulty in getting his Honours B.Sc. in mathematics and mathematical physics. Whilst in Rathfarnham, he had a very severe attack of rheumatic fever, as a result of which the doctors declared that he would never be able to play any game again, and that it would be dangerous for him even to walk upstairs quickly. Never was medical prophesy so completely off the mark.
At Milltown Park in 1919-21, he showed a decided aptitude for philosophy, clearness and exactness being his characteristics. A minor memory recalls the troubled times in which we then lived. In one of the Christmas plays, Fr. Paddy took the part of a sergeant of the R.I.C., complete with dark green uniform and bristling moustache. Just before the curtain went up, he remembered that he had left some essential property in his room, and dashed up the stairs to get it. On the way he encountered the late Father Patrick Gannon, who nearly had a heart attack at meeting what he took to be a Black and Tan engaged on a raid.
Then followed three years at Belvedere, where, in spite of the doctors' forebodings, he took an active part in organising the games, theology at Milltown, with ordination in 1927, tertianship at St. Beuno's, and a biennium in philosophy in Rome, 1929-31, his last vows being pronounced in the Church of the Gesù.
In 1931 he was appointed professor of Ontology at Tullabeg, which post he filled until 1937, being also Minister from 1932 to 1935. As a professor, if not very inspiring, he was most painstaking and thorough. He was a devoted, one might say almost fanatical follower of the doctrines of Suarez, and found himself ploughing a lone furrow, as his brilliant colleagues, Fathers Joseph Canavan, Arthur Little and Edward Coyne, were equally ardent Thomists and had secured the intellectual allegiance of the majority of the philosophers.
A curious incident must have seemed to Father Paddy to be almost a heaven-sent approval of his loyalty to Suarez. Browsing one day in a Dublin secondhand bookshop, he found an ancient copy of one of Suarez' works. Examining the fly-leaf, he found it inscribed to a certain person “from his friend Francisco Suarez”. The price of the volume was only a few shillings, but Father Paddy found that he had not even this amount in his pocket. He hurried to the nearest Jesuit house, borrowed the money and secured his prize. Experts afterwards confirmed that the signature was really that of the great theologian whose theories Father Paddy had so stubbornly defended.
During his years in Tullabeg, Fr. Paddy had ample opportunity for the pursuit of botany and entomology, subjects which, ever since the juniorate, had occupied his spare moments. Though he never had any formal training in either, he pursued them not as a mere hobby, but in the thorough way in which he did everything, and his knowledge was wide and exact.
In 1937, Fr. O'Kelly was transferred to St. Ignatius', Galway, and here began the most active and successful period of his life, which was to last for thirty-one years. He was at the height of his powers, and well equipped for all the varied tasks he found at his disposal, Of no man could it be more truly said that he was paratus ad omnia. He was a full-time teacher, mostly of mathematics, also of French, English and Religious Knowledge. But at the same time he was a full-time operarius in the church, and also exercised a most devoted ministry to the sick and suffering.
His energy soon became legendary. His bicycle stood at the door, always ready for action, and he thought nothing of starting off immediately after a full day's class to ride twenty or thirty miles to visit some invalid. When he went to give retreats during the summer, he usually performed the whole, or at least a large part of the journey by bicycle. His spare time was occupied by other activities, gardening, botanising, and painting, for the last of which he had a considerable, though untrained talent. Even his recreations were of a strenuous kind. When he played a round of golf, he was as much interested in the speed with which he completed it as in his score, and he was one of those hardy wights, the all-the-year round swimmers.
His best friends would not deny that there was a certain degree of exaggeration in this boundless activity, and that his zeal some times led to friction when he crossed the path of others, but none could but admire his utter devotion to his priestly duties, and his readiness to take on the most difficult tasks. He soon won the admiration and affection of the people of Galway, and there must have been countless souls who were enabled by his ministrations to face sickness and death with courage and hope, and not a few whom he helped to return to the fold from which they had strayed, Through the years his energy seemed undiminished. In the last year of his life, he again took on full teaching, which for a short time he had curtailed, and he was, just before his death, actually preparing to assume a new task, the teaching of biology through Irish, and was making, with his usual thoroughness, a study of the required vocabulary of technical terms. It had often been feared that his relentless activity must be putting a strain on his constitution, but there was no outward sign of this, and on the Sunday before his death, he had carried out all his usual work in the church. As he would have wished, he died in harness. He always went to bed at a late hour so as to be ready to answer a sick call. Death came while he was thus on duty. He was found on the morning of Monday, 22nd July, seated at his table, with the decrees of the Vatican Council, which he had evidently been studying, open before him.
Every section of the population of Galway, clerical and lay, was represented in the immense congregation which thronged the church for his funeral. Many tributes were paid to him in the local press and in letters of condolence sent to the community. Perhaps more eloquent than any of these was a remark made shortly before his death by a poor man. “Sure, he'd jump into the canal to save a soul”.

McKillop, Colin J, 1892-1964, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1726
  • Person
  • 06 December 1892-29 February 1964

Born: 06 December 1892, Goulburn, Sydney, Australia
Entered: 07 September 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 29 February 1964, St Francis Xavier, Lavender Bay, North Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Younger brother of of Ken - RIP 1945 and Cousin of Donald - RIP 1925 and Saint Mary

by 1916 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1920 in Australia - Regency
by 1929 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Colin McKillop, brother of Ken and cousin of Donald and Saint Mary, was educated at Riverview where he rowed with a senior crew, played rugby in the first XV, and was an active member of the St Vincent de Paul Society. He was also a good swimmer, competing in Goulburn. He worked as a bank clerk in Goulburn for a time, and then entered the Society at Tullabeg, Ireland, 7 September 1912. He was a home junior at Rathfarnham, 1914-15, and studied philosophy at Stonyhurst and Milltown Park until 1918 when he returned to Xavier College, Melbourne. Here he was second prefect and Officer Commanding (OC) of the cadet corps. He spent a few more years of regency at Riverview until 1924 before returning to theology studies at Milltown Park, 1924-28. He was ordained after two years. Tertianship at St Beuno's followed immediately. McKillop returned to teaching at Riverview, 1929-38, and was minister and procurator. These were the difficult years of the Depression. Numbers of students fell to 120, and the college debt was substantial. He arranged loans and methods of paying the interest and part of the capital debt, with the result that in about ten years the college was financially safe and the number of boys increased once again. He also improved the interior of the college. He held similar jobs as bursar at Cassius College, Pymble, 1938-39, and at Xavier College, 1939-40. He returned to Pymble, 1941-50, with the same brief, as well as care of the farm and garden. He was also procurator of the vice-province from 1940 and cared for the temporal administration of the houses throughout Australia. He lived at the Lavender Bay parish, 1951-64, doing the same work until his death. He was large, stout man, and very shrewd in all business matters. He was an excellent procurator and administrator of finances, keeping a good eye on the stock market and investments. He was also considered a man of considerable intelligence and a good moral theologian. But he was also rather shy and diffident, and so not a good preacher, nor a man that many people knew well. His shyness disappeared in the presence of businessmen with whom he worked. They admired him, appreciated his rather uncanny business judgment, and liked to deal with him because he was not petty. The province owed much to McKillop for his assistance in building the holiday house at Gerroa, the place of much enjoyment to Jesuits and lay visitors alike. He was experienced as very land and extremely fair and just. He disliked anyone trying to deceive him, for he was himself a very straight and forthright man. He was on his way to help in the setting up of the new junior school at Riverview when he died very suddenly at Lavender Bay from a cerebral haemorrhage.

Byrne, John Baptist, 1898-1978, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/80
  • Person
  • 22 August 1898-15 December 1978

Born: 22 August 1898, Coolbeg, Rathnew, County Wicklow
Entered: 09 October 1917, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, Stonyhurst College, Lancashire, England
Died: 15 December 1978, St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Denbigh, Wales

by 1927 at Heythrop, Oxfordshire (ANG) working
by 1938 at Roehampton, London (ANG) working
by 1939 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) working
by 1943 at St John’s Beaumont, Berkshire (ANG) working
by 1946 at Heythrop, Oxfordshire (ANG) working
by 1972 at St Beuno’s, Wales (ANG) working

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Became a Brother because of difficulties in studies. Lent to ANG Province

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 54th Year No 2 1979

Obituary :

Br John Baptist Byrne (1898-1978)

Brother John Baptist Byrne, SJ, who died at St Beuno’s on December 15th 1978, was born in Wicklow, Ireland, on August 22nd 1898.
He entered the Irish Noviceship in Tullabeg, as a scholastic novice on October 9th, 1917. He did not go to the University but went through the “Home” Juniorate in Tullabeg: 1919-1921. He completed the three year Philosophy Course at Milltown Park, in the years 1921-24. He spent two years in Mungret College (1924-1926), but his work was that of a Prefect, - he did not teach. By now it had become clear that whether from lack of ability or lack of interest in concentrated study, he was unsuited for further scholastic studies. In 1926 the Provincial gave him the option of leaving the Society or of remaining on as a Brother. He decided to become a Brother, but asked to be ascribed to the English Province. Although there is no certain reason why he made this request, perhaps the most probable one is that it relieved himself and his relatives) of some embarrassment at changing his status to that of a Brother after about nine years as a scholastic on the way to the Priesthood. The English Province agreed to accept Brother John Byrne, SJ.

I give here a contribution of Father John Duggan, SJ, of St Beuno’s: his letter includes that of Father P McIlhenry, SJ, of St Beuno’s, a letter of great interest, and supporting strongly the opening sentence: “Br Byrne was something of an enigma ..”
John Baptist Byrne was brought up in the town of Wicklow, and attended the day school in that town going along with his sister Sr Colette, Irish Sister of Charity, (who tells us of his early life). She writes: “John was a good student, very fond of reading in his spare time. He was very gentle and quiet in his behaviour. He entered the noviceship of the Society (at 19) then at Tullabeg. Seemingly, all went well until he had to face exams (pre-Ordination)”. Meanwhile he had followed the usual course, being a Junior at Tullabeg 1919-21, and doing the course in Philosophy at Milltown Park 1921-24, There followed two years teaching at Mungret College, near Limerick, then a most flourishing Jesuit apostolic school for boys mostly aspiring to the priesthood in foreign parts (an American cardinalis an alumnus).” (This school has been given up and regrettably closed in the 1970's).
His sister's reference to facing exams for Ordination would seem to refer to the prospect of such an ordeal (very likely Ad Auds, etc.), rather than to the imminence of the real thing. His sister continues: “It was after this time it was decided he would not be for Ordination, and got the option of remaining in the Society as a Brother, or being placed in a bank. My father naturally was disappointed, but the rest of the family felt relieved he did not choose the bank! John wrote a letter home which was indicative of his spirituality: one sentence in it I remember even now, 50 years later: “I have only to know God’s Will - and then love it!” I do not know if he chose the English Province - I understood it was settled for him”. We have begun with his sister’s account, so we will finish that forthwith. “He kept up with the family by regular letters, came over for the funerals of my two brothers, and when holidays at home were permitted he came as lately as two years ago. But by this time his deafness was an obstacle to his safety, as well as a general restlessness and failing sight. He became a bit of a recluse, but always interested in current affairs. He could make some shrewd remarks such as one to me: ‘I always admire you because you keep your religious habit’. Evidently some of the Sisters attending St Beuno’s had become ultra-mod! ... He led a holy life as a religious, very unworldly in dress and manners, and kept his sufferings to himself”.
When John Byrne came across the sea to England, we are assured in the deadpan tone of officialdom that, after nine years in the Society, he was excused a further novitiate. On this change in Br Byrne’s status and habitat, and his life for the next fifty years or so, Fr McIlhenny (well versed in the workings of top management in the Society) has these penetrating, if somewhat caustic, comments: “Br. Byrne was something of an enigma. It was always something of a puzzle to understand why he was accepted for transfer from the status of scholastic to that of coadjutor - and then sent out of his own Province. Also, why were Superiors so reluctant about insisting on the use of proper instruments to remedy what seemed to be defects in both hearing and eyesight from a very early period of his religious life. Was it the ‘English love of odd people - of characters?’ This seems to reflect badly on both general care of members of the Society and particular consideration for personal relationships, Br Byrne, both in the early days at Heythrop and in his final years at St Beuno’s left a feeling of frustration in most of his contacts. The devout Brother praying in the chapel was somewhat difficult to reconcile with the evasive Brother in the matter of a definite job; the apparent inability to give attention to any topic seemed to contradict assiduous reading of such periodicals as The Times and The Tablet; the normal attitude of not hearing a remark from one of the regular community made surprising an easy readiness to greet an occasional visitor. How can a proper judgment be made?

Fr J McSweeney, Editor of the Irish Province Newsletter offers this useful comment: “Although there is no certain reason why John made the request (to change his Province), perhaps the most probable one is that it relieved him and his relatives, of some embarrassment at changing his status to that of a Brother after about 9 years as a scholastic on the way to the Priesthood”.

Fr McIlhenny's puzzlement remained, as it did with many of us, in particular at Heythrop in the early years. Could it be, pace Fr Ledochowski, that the Collegium Maximum formula was a grievous mistake, so that the officials concerned knew far too little of the life of their community and were prepared to let them sink or swim? Br John had ten years of this and the die was cast.
Speaking on the strength of two years with him at Heythrop (1931 33) and then four years at Beaumont in the war (1941-45), one can record a few reflections. Admittedly, Br John did not butter many parsnips, and maybe his work-rate was not high. But just as it would be a poor sort of monastery that did not welcome an obviously spiritual monk though he could not be of great economic benefit, so the Society would be the poorer if it had not welcomed such an ‘anima naturaliter christiana’. There was the curiously intriguing smile, as though there were a leprechaun inside trying to get out. Then the placid out-of-this-world outlook on life, ever unruffled and patiently putting up with others who were busy with many things. Of course there is a danger in this that ‘tout comprendre, c'est tout condamner’. But his fellow Brothers do bear witness that John was interested in everybody and made a point of knowing all about them. Perhaps this ties in with his enjoyment of his job as postman to the community: at Heythrop this could mean up to 200 people's mail, which he delivered daily andante, but conamore, to everyone in God’s good time.
He was withal something of an ascetic: he was observed regularly kneeling bolt upright in the most draughty spot in Heythrop chapel (the choir-loft) indifferent to the cold. Either he was an extremely early riser, or sometimes in later life) never went to bed at all, but he was often about by 4 o'clock in the morning, I am told. On sleepless nights he would wander through the marble halls of Heythrop and sometimes drop into an empty mansion room to wander therein for a change. Once the empty room happened to be occupied by the Provincial, who is said to have been ‘not amused’. If Heythrop Hall (new style) proves to be haunted in time to come, John Byrne will be the most likely revenant. It was only when we left Heythrop in 1970 that John moved to St Beuno's where he was to spend the last eight years of his untroubled existence ‘amid the alien corn’ on the wrong side of the Irish Sea.
Though not having first-hand acquaintance with Br Byrne in the latter half of his life in the Society, the editor can willingly claim responsibility for most of the above (and endorses Fr McIlhenny's strictures on management), but he hopes it has not been too explosive and that no one will be blown up for it, or by it.
John Duggan SJ

The following postcrript in the author's inimitable idiom helps us to realise how his fellow Brothers appreciated Br John :
“I attended Brother John Byrne's Requiem at St Beuno’s; Father Gerard Hughes, the Tertian master and Rector, said a few words to those assembled. The Irish Jesuit Provincial was there, for Brother Byrne belonged to the Irish Province. Who decided that he should change Provinces I don’t know, maybe it was by mutual consent. It seems he must have had a breakdown and further study was out of the question. As time went by he became a little eccentric, and more so as the years rolled on; but we must remember at the outset, Brother was accepted as a Jesuit Religious and fulfilled all the religious duties expected of a Brother to the very end. I think Father made this clear to us in the Chapel at St Beuno’s, but it would not surprise his Sister a nun, who was there, who knew John. I knew his other Sister also a nun who on visiting John at Heythrop, whispered to me, you know our John is a bit odd. They had learnt to come to terms with John and let him get away with his little oddities.
I lived with Brother for nine years at Heythrop College. He was the Postman. In the early days there was a very big community at Heythrop so that the job of Postman kept Brother busy, also going round with notes from one Professor to another. He hardly ever left the house save to make his annual Retreat. On returning, more often than not he took a bus from Banbury, to what we old Heythropians know as the Banbury lodge at the Banbury gate, the lodge built by the Brassey family, which meant a two mile walk down the old Shrewsbury drive. So the Brother would walk down the drive, enter unnoticed and so commence his job as the College Postman. He must have re-addressed many thousands of letters and when Jesuits moved on, they would be amused to see a little aside on their letters. Please notify your change of address?
One very amusing episode which I think has gone all round the Province is this. Each year at Christmas, each member of the Community was allowed so many Christmas cards each, a ration so to speak. Now one well known Professor, who had a huge correspondence, had sent off well over the allocated ration, I dare say to the tune of 200 (as had many others though not quite so many), so after the allocated ration had been duly despatched by Brother, he put the rest under his bed. His strict understanding of the Law made no allowances for the individual. By chance some one had to go into Brother’s room and was amazed to see all these letters under his bed. A gentle reproof from the then Rector, sent the Brother in all obedience licking four or five hundred stamps and sending them on their way. The Professor was fuming. I think the Rector must have been inwardly amused, while the good Brother was unperturbed. He certainly kept the Rule to the letter. He was a very well read man, when every one was asleep in the early hours of the morning he read all the periodicals in the Father's library. He knew all that was going on, but I think he turned himself off outwardly, but inwardly he was very sharp. He had come to terms with himself, perhaps his early breakdown had left its mark, he had to live with it for the rest of his life. But as a good, kind, simple in the right sense of the word) Jesuit Brother.
Richard Hackett SJ

Writing of Br Byrne's final years in St Beuno’s (1970-1978) Father Gerard W Hughes SJ, says: “Johnny, as we called him, was always full of charm and courtesy, but he became increasingly withdrawn and lived the life of a recluse and appeared to become increasingly deaf. I say ‘appeared to become’ because a few months before his death, I took him out in the car and he carried on a conversation without very much sign of deafness! Among other topics he was eloquent in his disapproval of some changes in the Liturgy, and of nuns who did not wear the veil; but when he spoke of individuals it was always with kindness. I chatted with him almost every day until his death, but his mind was usually very confused. In all the confusion there was a source of great peace and gentleness in Johnnie and his eyes were very kindly. In the hospital the nurses nicknamed him “The Cherub”. He spent hours in the Chapel, by day and night, and he had an uncanny ability for knowing where Mass was being said. Small groups would arrange a Mass among themselves, and Johnnie would appear ... I saw him a few hours before he died. He was only half awake, but he smiled and gripped my hand firmly. He is buried in the St. Beuno's Cemetery’.

Craig, Joseph, 1894-1969, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1120
  • Person
  • 16 October 1894-07 April 1969

Born: 16 October 1894, Clifton Hill, Melbourne, Australia
Entered: 01 February 1915, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 07 April 1969, St Vincent's Hospital, Fitzroy - Australiae province (ASL)

Part of the Kostka Hall, Melbourne, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1919 in Australia - Regency
by 1923 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1929 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
His early education was at CBC St Kilda and later at St Aloysius College Milsons Point.

1917-1918 After First Vows he did a Juniorate At Loyola Greenwich
1918-1921 He was sent for Regency at St Ignatius College Riverview where he was Third Prefect and in charge of Music.
1921-1924 He was sent first to Milltown Park Dublin, and then St Aloysius College Jersey for Philosophy
1924-1928 He returned to Milltown Park for theology. he was Ordained by “war privilege” after two years
1928-1929 he made tertianship at St Beuno’s Wales
1929 & 1932 He was sent teaching at St Aloysius College Sydney
1930-1932 He was at St Ignatius College Riverview teaching
1935-1936 He was sent as Minister to the Toowong Parish Brisbane, but became unwell and was sent to Sevenhill (1935-1936)
1939-1969 He was sent to Kostka Hall at Xavier College Kew where he taught Latin and French, did some Prefecting and helped with accounts. His teaching style was very traditional, and involved methodical repetition.

In later years, after a road accident, a heart attack and a stroke, he became less effective. Yet he was closely associated with the building of a new Chapel, which opened in 1967, and for which he was most particular about various fittings.

His final illness was brief and he died at St Vincent’s Hospital.

Collopy, George, 1893-1973, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1072
  • Person
  • 05 December 1893-08 October 1973

Born: 05 December 1893, Melbourne, Australia
Entered: 14 August 1915, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 08 October 1973, Burke Hall, Kew, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1919 in Australia - Regency
by 1925 at Hastings, Sussex, England (LUGD) studying
by 1927 at Paray-le-Monial France (LUGD) studying
by 1929 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
His early education was at CBC Parade College Melbourne and had then worked with the Customs department for a number of years before Entry at Loyola Greenwich.

His Jesuit studies were undertaken in Ireland and France and he was Ordained in 1926.
When he returned to Australia after his studies he was sent as Minister to Sevenhill and then Sportsmaster to Xavier College Kew.
1942 He returned to Sevenhill as Superior and Parish Priest
1942-1949 He was sent to St Ignatius College Riverview as Minister. As Minister at Riverview, he knew the boys well, and while not universally popular, he was considered fair. As a disciplinarian in the refectory he was without equal, and always in control of the situation. His concern for the health of the boys was well known, as was his concern for what he considered wasteful expenditure. At time he was perhaps not the happiest of men, but he was always doing his job. He was always where he needed to be, and if you needed something you wouldn’t get more than you needed, and perhaps less.
1949-1950 He was sent to the Hawthorn Parish as Minister
1950-1955 He was appointed Minister at St Patrick’s College Melbourne. This gave him more time to smoke his Captain Petersen pipe and a trip down Brunswick Street on a Saturday afternoon. However this situation did no last, as an accident involving the Rector and some other members of the community caused him to be appointed Acting Rector and later confirmed as Vice Rector (1951-1955) This didn’t eliminate the moments of reflective smoking or visits to the Fitzroy Football Club. Indeed it was said this was one of the happiest periods of his life.
1956-1961 When Henry Johnston had to attend a conference in Rome, he was appointed Acting Parish Priest at St Mary’s, Sydney, and he was later confirmed as Parish Priest.
1961-1968 He returned to St Patrick’s College teaching Religion, History, Latin, Mathematics and English. In addition he took on the job of Procurator for the Province, a job he held until he was almost 80 years old.
1968 His last appointment was at Burke Hall Kew.

He was very parsimonious with money, always critical of requests, and sometimes required the direct intervention of the Provincial or Socius. He also found it hard to adapt to the Church of the post Vatican II era. So, Community Meetings and Concelebrations were not congenial. He could be a difficult man, but he was reliable. In tough times he did the work that he was given as well as he could.

O'Riordan, Frank, 1897-1954, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/346
  • Person
  • 16 April 1897-02 August 1954

Born: 16 April 1897, Clonmel, County Tipperary
Entered: 31 August 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1927, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, St Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 02 August 1954, Dublin

Part of Crescent College community, Limerick at time of his death.

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1923 in Australia - Regency at Xavier College, Kew and St Patrick’s College, Melbourne
by 1929 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Francis O'Riordan arrived at Xavier College for regency in 1923, but moved to St Patrick's College in 1924. He was also assistant prefect of studies.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 29th Year No 4 1954
Father Francis O’Riordan

Father O'Riordan was born in Clonmel on April 16th, 1897, son of the late Jeremiah O'Riordan, Senior Inspector of National Schools. He was educated at Clongowes and with seven school companions, entered the Noviceship at Tullabeg in August, 1914. After philosophy in Milltown Park, he went to Australia for his regency, and taught for three years at Kew College and St. Patrick's, Melbourne. He went to Milltown for theology and was ordained in 1927. He was at St. Beuno's for his Tertianship and then took up teaching at Belvedere where he remained until 1945. In this year signs of nervous trouble appeared and he was transferred to Clongowes, but as his health showed further deterioration, he was changed to the Crescent in the following year. The nervous breakdown, however, was not prevented and the remaining years of his life were spent under a mental cloud. A few months before he died, he was removed for a serious operation to a Dublin nursing home. This change seemed to improve him mentally very much and he appreciated the devoted attention he received. However, the expected improvement in his general health did not take place and he passed peacefully away on the morning of August 2nd, 1954, after receiving the last sacraments. His nurses spoke in admiration of the patience with which he endured discomfort and pain of the last weeks of his life and of the general air of peace and tranquility of soul.
Father O'Riordan was a great loss to the Colleges, for besides being an excellent teacher of elementary Mathematics he was in many respects an ideal Prefect of Junior boys. To maintain a high standard of discipline, he did not require to punish much as he exercised by his mere presence wonderful control. It was striking to note how the noise of the playground sank to a murmur when he appeared on the playground steps and just gazed around the quadrangle, or how the crookedest “crocodile” became a straight line when he “took the salute”. He liked these dramatic appearances and the boys liked them also. A very amusing photograph in the 1948 Belvederian entitled “The Courtmartial” which shows Fr. O'Riordan with hands in gown addressing a group of young culprits catches admirably the relations that existed between him and the boys.
Those who lived with him in the same Community will remember how he enlivened the after-dinner recreations by his exhortations to “relax”, his calculation of “boy-hours” and his production of a referee's whistle when he thought the rules of debate were being broken. May God be good to him.

Murphy, Michael J, 1894-1971, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/802
  • Person
  • 01 April 1894-27 July 1971

Born: 01 April 1894, Ballybay, County Monaghan
Entered: 09 October 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, St Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died :27 July 1971, Mungret College SJ, Limerick

Studied for BA at UCD

Editor of An Timire, 1930-31.

by 1918 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1929 at St Beuno’s, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

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

Note from Paddy Finneran Entry
With the encouragement of Michael Murphy he then entered the Novitiate at St Mary’s, Emo under the newly appointed Novice Master John Neary. Michael Murphy followed him to Emo as Spiritual Father, and then onward to Rathfarnham as his Prefect of Studies in the Juniorate.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 46th Year No 4 1971

Obituary :

Fr Michael Murphy SJ (1914-1971)

Fr Michael Murphy was born in Monaghan on April 1st, 1894 and received his secondary education at the diocesan seminary. He then went to Dublin to study engineering in the recently opened UCD. Money was not easily come by and Fr Michael would cycle from Monaghan to Dublin at the beginning of each term and back to Monaghan at the end. For good measure, he had to take his brother in tow as he had not got Fr Michael's reserves of strength. While he was the University, Fr Egan used to admire his steadying influence on the wilder members of the engineering faculty,
Before completing his course in UCD he entered the noviceship at Tullabeg in 1914 shortly after the beginning of World War I, In 1916 after taking his vows he remained on in Tullabeg in the home Junioriate before sitting for his final University examiniation in 1917. Then he went to Stonyhurst for philosophy only to return within a year to Ireland when the Conscription scare blew up and go to Milltown to finish philosophy. He taught in Clongowes from 1920 to 1923 and after theology returned to Clongowes for a year before going to tertianship in St Beuno's. After his tertianship he went to Belvedere as assistant to the editor of the Irish Messenger and the following year became a teacher in Belvedere. He was transferred in 1927 to Mungret as Prefect of studies, a position he held till he was sent in 1935 to Emo as Socius to the Master of novices, Two years later he went to Rathfarnham Castle as Minister of Juniors, remaining thus till 1941. He was next appointed as Prefect of Studies in the Crescent, and from 1941 to 1954 he occupied this position either in the Crescent or in Mungret with a one year break when he went to Belvedere to teach from 1945-46. When Fr. M. Erraught replaced him as Prefect of Studies in 1954 he remained on in Mungret teaching Mathematics till 1956 when he went to Emo Park as Procurator. When Emo was sold in 1969, Fr. Murphy, now an old man, returned to Mungret, his working days over. Two years later, he passed peacefully away in a nursing home close to Mungret College. He died July 27th.
Most of Fr. Murphy's life as a Jesuit was spent in the Colleges either as teacher or as Prefect of Studies. He taught in Belvedere, Clongowes and Mungret, and was Prefect of Studies in the Crescent and for two periods in Mungret. Moreover, he was Prefect of Studies of the Province from the institution of the post for many years.
There is no gain-saying his success as Prefect of Studies. He possessed the capacity for carrying out endlessly tedious chores on the progress of the boys in the school. He was not severe and administered very little corporal punishment, producing results by steady pressure on boys and masters. Mungret in particular had remarkably consistent success in the public examinations under his guidance.
On the occasion of his annual visit to the College as Province Prefect of Studies, the local Prefect of Studies found him understanding and helpful with little taste for dull uniformity. Scholastics were encouraged by him to improve their teaching techniques and prompt assistance given to help them become efficient masters.
In his dealings with the Juniors as their Minister in Rathfarnham he was not a success, but indeed it is hard to see how anyone could be a success if he carried out the instructions he was given. The attitude of those in charge of the Juniors had been one of trust, now it was obviously one of suspicion. Studies do not flourish in such an atmosphere. It was a great relief for Fr Murphy to leave Rathfarnham and go as Prefect of Studies to the Crescent in 1941. The problems he had to deal with in a school were familiar to him and he knew how to deal with them successfully.
Fr Murphy was a Northerner with the faults and virtues of the North. As they say up there he was very “true” and most reliable and conscientious. One could not imagine him shirking a job no matter how demanding or unattractive it was. He possessed a good sense of humour combined with the patience of Job which he practised in dealing with the bores of the Province who were sure of a sympathetic hearing from him. In his habits he was austere and allowed himself little indulgence. Smoking, drinking, novel-reading had no attraction for him and his one form of exercise was cycling.
For Mathematics he had an abiding passion. I do not think he taught any other subject during his many years in the Colleges, but even after his teaching days were over, he spent many a day happily with figures. He was a constant correspondent of Fr R Ingram after the computer was set up in UCD and many an hour of the computer was occupied in testing for him whether this or that formula would always give you a prime number..
The rising generation of Jesuits would describe him as pre Vatican II, the Society will flourish if its younger members give the ungrudging service Fr Murphy did. RIP

Kirwan, Michael, 1884-1942, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/222
  • Person
  • 19 February 1884-19 August 1942

Born: 19 February 1884, Waterford, County Waterford
Entered: 01 September 1919, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 23 June 1912, St Patrick's College, Maynooth, County Kildare
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, St Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 19 August 1942, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

Had studied for BA at UCD before entry and then 2 years Philosophy and 4 years Theology at St Patrick’s College Maynooth before entry.
Tertianship at Tullabeg

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 17th Year No 4 1942
Obituary :
Rev Michael Kirwan SJ
He was born in Waterford in 1884, the son of the late Mr. Michael Kirwan. former Mayor of Waterford. He was educated at the Christian Brothers' School, Waterpark, and at Blackrock College, Dublin, and entered Maynooth, where, after winning Degrees in Arts and Divinity, he was ordained Priest in 1912. For the next two years he was Dean and Professor of St. John's, Waterford, and Diocesan Inspector from 1914 to 1919. In the latter years he attained his long-cherished desire of entering the Society and made his two years' noviceship in Tullabeg. After a year of study in Miltown Park he joined the staff at Gardiner Street Church where he labored until his death. He was Superior from 1935 to 1941. Among the varied activities to which he devoted his organising talents were the St. Joseph's Young Priests Society, having been personally associated with the foundation of every new branch of the organisation for the past twelve years. The Society of St. Vincent de Paul of which be was an ardent apostle from his first connection with Gardiner Street, guiding for many years until his death the destinies of the Boys' Club at Nelson Street, one of the chief activities promoted by the Conference of Blessed Oliver Plunkett never missing his weekly talk to the distressed of Ozanam House He also organised and placed on a successful basis the St. Joseph's Penny Dinners and Free Meals at Cumberland Street. Fr Kirwan was one of the best known and best-loved priests in Ireland, and the City of Dublin, where he worked for the past two decades, has reason to cherish his memory. A man of outstanding qualities of mind and heart, of a remarkable mental and physical energy, he crowded into a comparatively short life an amount and variety of work that surprised his friends. Of rare practical common-sense, of an exquisite gift for friendship and deep sympathy for the poor and suffering, he spent himself unselfishly for others. As a speaker he was most liked when most blunt and forceful, and he had the power of getting down to the plain man, whom he understood in all his ramifications, winning his heart. He was never at a loss when confronting the most diverse type of audience. His musical and histrionic talents were of no mean order. Keen on all manly sport, he was a powerful swimmer, and only last year added once again to his already long list of rescues from drowning.
He had been in hospital since April 8th, and had undergone an operation which seemed to be most successful. For some weeks prior to Fr. Gallagher's death, he had been out and about and seemed on the verge of complete recovery. But simultaneously with Fr. Gallagher's illness, he developed a pneumonic condition which caused grave anxiety for about ten days. He got over this, but later had severe attacks which pointed to the existence of a dangerous clot. However, with careful nursing, he seemed to be over this trouble when at 5.30 a.m. on August 19th, the fatal seizure came.
Universal sorrow was manifested all over Dublin and throughout the country when the news of his death was published. Messages of condolence were received from many members of the hierarchy. His Grace the Archbishop called to offer his sympathies and said Mass for Fr. Kirwan the next morning. The funeral was a remarkable tribute from Church, State and people. His Lordship the Bishop of Thasos presided, and about 200 priests and 60 nuns attended. Mr. de Valera, Mr. O'Ke1ly and the Lord Mayor of' Dublin were present. But again as at Fr. Gallagher funeral, the most touching tribute was from the poor, who, the preceding night, came in large crowds to touch the coffin and lay their rosaries and other objects of devotion on it.
On the same morning there was Office and Requiem in the Cathedral at Waterford, presided over by Right Rev. Dean Byrne Vicar-Capitular, and attended by many of Fr. Kirwan's fellow-diocesans. Innumerable messages of sympathy were received from private individuals and the many charitable bodies wuitil which Fr. Kirwan had been associated.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Michael Kirwan 1884-1942
Fr Michael Kirwan was one of the best known and popular priests in Dublin, and indeed Ireland. He was ordained for his native diocese of Waterford, and he worked there as Professor in St John’s Seminary and also as Diocesan Inspector, before he entered the Society in 1919.

He spent all his life as a Jesuit in Gardiner Street, of which house he was Superior from 1935-1941. A man of outstanding qualities of mind and heart, of remarkable mental and physical energy, he crowded into a comparatively short life an amount and variety of work which astonished and edified his friends and contemporaries.

He died on August 19th 1942, and the long queue of people who filed past his coffin is a tribute to his genuine love and work for the ordinary man in the street.

Kelly, Albert, 1883-1967, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/200
  • Person
  • 25 October 1883-21 January 1967

Born: 25 October 1883, Neemuch, Rajputana, India
Entered: 13 January 1920, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1930, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 21 January 1967, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

Served as a private in the First World War.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Customs Officer before Entry
◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 42nd Year No 2 1967

Obituary :
Br Albert Edwin Kelly SJ (1883-1967)
Bro. Albert Kelly died at Gardiner Street on Saturday, 21st January 1967. He had been ill for some months with several complaints and the doctor had not much hope of his recovery from the beginning of his illness. He had a long drawn out agony and for over a week before his death he did not eat or drink, though he was not quite unconscious and did not seem to suffer much, At his funeral an office, lauds and a High Mass were said, the first time such a rite was accorded to the obsequies of a Coadjutor Brother.
Albert Edwin Kelly was born on 25th October 1883, at Neemuch, Rajputana, Central India, where his father was engaged in army or administrative work. He was brought up in India and educated in different schools St. Mary's College, Bombay, St. Joseph's College, Bangalore, San Thome High School, Madras, and also for some time in the seminary at the same address. On leaving school he engaged in business as a salesman in leather goods. He was also for some time employed in the Indian Customs Preventive Service. In the First World War he joined the British army as a second lieutenant. He served in the eastern front. He did not speak freely about his military career. He took part in the Gallipoli campaign and spoke of the appalling losses, especially in officers, which the landing on the peninsula involved. He served also in the Salonica campaign. In 1919 at the end of the war he came to Ireland and in July of that year he entered the Society at St. Stanislaus College, Tullamore, and in February got his gown, and in due time pronounced his first vows. On 2nd February 1930 he took his final vows at Rathfarnham Castle. Most of his life in the Society was spent at Rathfarnham. He was stationed for brief periods at Belvedere, Milltown Park and Emo. At Rathfarnham he worked under Fr. Patrick Barrett and was busy organising the weekend and midweek retreats. He was transferred to Gardiner Street in September 1945 where he was manuductor and reader at table. For a long time he was in charge of the church door collections. Bro Albert did his various jobs in his own industrious way. He was always busy, quietly and unobtrusively. After the retreats at Rathfarnham and the Mass collections at Gardiner Street he made up his totals slowly and accurately. At Gardiner Street especially he packed his piles of coppers in a bag and carried the heavy if not precious load to the bank at a fixed day and hour. Some of the community would jokingly warn him to take care that he would not be coshed by some robber on his way. For some years he suffered from delusions and was inclined to see the hand and machinations of communists everywhere. He was an assiduous reader of the papal denunciations of communism and probably his delusions were due to his loyalty to the Church. He went about his work silently and did not easily enter into conversation. But at recreation he would sometimes expand and could describe some of his military adventures, or tell a story, grave or gay, with much effect.
The abiding impression that Bro. Albert left with those who lived with him was that of constant unobtrusive devotion to the job in hand. The lay staff and the congregation at Gardiner Street appreciated his work and devotion, though he was not particularly expansive. He was a conscientious, exact, religious; faithful in the observance of his exercises of piety. He gave edification by his devotion to duty, his quite unworldly spirit, his spirit of work, his charity and respect for all. In every community where he lived he was esteemed and liked. May he rest in peace.

O'Dea, Paul P, 1894-1972, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/326
  • Person
  • 30 June 1894-30 April 1972

Born: 30 June 1894, Kilfenora, County Clare
Entered: 07 September 1911, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1929, Chiesa del Gesù, Rome, Italy
Died: 30 April 1972, Milltown Park, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Studied for BA in Economics at UCD

by 1918 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1928 at St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship
by 1929 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 47th Year No 3 1972

Milltown Park
Father Paul O'Dea died peacefully in Milltown Park on the after noon of Sunday April 30th. He had lived here without a break for almost forty years and had been in the same room for thirty of them. Although he had been ailing for some time, he became very weak only two days before his death Nurses were called to attend him but the end came more swiftly than the community expected. He will be remembered particularly for his great patience and his hope in eternity. May he rest in peace.

Obituary :

Fr Paul O’Dea SJ (1894-1972)

A very long chapter in the history of Milltown Park ended with the death of Fr Paul O'Dea on the afternoon on Sunday, April 30th. For the past fifteen years or so his physical health had suffered and in the last few years he made no secret of the fact that he was weary of life and eagerly expecting a call to a better life. “Why does God not take me?” was a question he often asked. Latterly it became more and more plain that the end was drawing near. Yet, Fr Paul, with indomitable will-power, rose each morning to say his Mass (though he sometimes had to cling to the wall for support on his way to the chapel); and he was equally faithful in his attendance at each community duty. In the last twenty-four hours it was necessary to call in the help of a day nurse and a night nurse, but death came, in the end suddenly and most peacefully --- release from a life that had, for almost fifty years, been one of unbroken and faithful service to the house that for him was the centre of all his activities and of his prayers..
Paul O'Dea was born at Ennistymon on June 30th, 1894, the son of an old-world shopkeeper and farmer whose fine example and wise counsels made so deep an impression on the young boy that, seventy years later, he would constantly recall the lessons he had learned at home or when walking with his father through the streets of Ennis - for Paul's father moved from Ennistymon to Ennis when Paul was still a young boy.
It was from the Christian Brothers in Ennis that he learned what were to be the foundations on which he build so assiduously, in reading and in solitary thought, for many long years.
At the age of fifteen he was sent to Clongowes where he spent the two years, 1909-11. Of the novices who went with him to Tullabeg in 1911 Fr John Ryan is now the sole survivor. But the present writer can remember the grim determination of Br O'Dea's fervour, which was to be matched a few years later by an almost equally grim determination to break every rule of the Juniorate during his years in Rathfarnham Castle, 1913-17! Ill-health may have been in part the cause of these sudden swings from one ex treme to another, but there was also the overpowering thirst for knowledge, especially for historical or geographical knowledge which took deep root in his mind during those early years.
Fr Paul never lost his sense of deep personal gratitude to the two men who saved him from the loss of what was, beyond all doubt, a true and lasting vocation to the Society. Those two men were the first Rector of Rathfarnham Castle, Fr James Brennan, and the Provincial Fr T V Nolan who took the place of Fr William Delaney in the autumn of 1912.
To tell the story of Fr Paul's slow but impressive intellectual development and of the devoted service he gave to Milltown Park as Professor of what was then known as the moming Dorma class, for so many years and as the immediate successor to Fr Peter Fin lay, in that chair, would require more space than is available in a number of Province News which has to find space for so many other losses to our Irish province. Let it be sufficient for the moment to say that with the death of Fr Paul O'Dea, Milltown Park has lost a singularly faithful and loyal son and those of us who survive him know that we also have lost a patient and kindly older brother in our religious life.

Ward, Kieran J, 1893-1972, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/274
  • Person
  • 02 September 1893-12 June 1972

Born: 02 September 1893, Belfast, County Antrim
Entered: 07 September 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 2 February 1929. Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 12 June 1972, Galway Regional Hospital, Galway

Part of the Coláiste Iognáid, Galway community at the time of death

by 1917 at St Aloysius, Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1928 at St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 47th Year No 3 1972

St Ignatius College, Galway
News has just come of Father Ward's death, after a very short illness, in the Regional Hospital, on the morning of June 12th. He was on the threshold of celebrating his 60th year in the Society.
The Concelebrated Requiem Mass on 14th June was in Irish. Fr O'Shea (nephew) was the First Concelebrant, assisted by Fr Provincial and Fr Rector, Fourteen priests took part in the Concelebrated Mass, many of them old friends of Fr Ward from other houses. Ar láimh dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

Obituary :

Fr Ciarán Mac an Bháird SJ (1893-1972)

Fr Ward died in Galway Regional Hospital after a brief illness on Monday, the 12th June, in his 79th year.
His father, Timothy, was a Galway man, but Fr Ward was born in Belfast, where he attended St. Patrick's Christian Brothers School. He completed his secondary education at Belvedere College, Dublin, and entered the Noviceship in Rahan, Tullamore, just sixty years ago in the 7th September, 1912.
After his studies in Rathfarnham he went to Jersey for Philosophy. Owing to the war and danger of conscription he was transferred to Milltown Park to complete the last year of Philosophy, after which he taught in Clongowes from 1919 to 1923. He then returned to Milltown Park for theology and was ordained in 1926. He finished his studies in St Beuno's College, North Wales, and then returned to Clongowes to teach there for three years.
In 1931 he was transferred to the Sacred Heart College, Limerick. He proved himself a very efficient teacher especially in Irish, French and Latin. In addition to this he was Assistant Prefect of Studies, Master of Ceremonies and Minister. As Master of Ceremonies he had charge of the Mass Servers whom he trained with very special care and attention. Many of the congregation commented on the devotion and reverence of the boys under his care.
He was also keenly interested in Drama and produced operettas each year in Irish for Prize Day. He had a special gift of being able to communicate his own personal talent as an actor to the boys he chose for his plays. In addition to all this work he organised each summer groups of boys to spend Irish-speaking holidays in the Kerry Gaeltacht at Ballyferriter and Baile na nGall. In all these activities Fr E Andrews was his ever faithful associate as later in Galway where they again combined energies.
He came to Galway in September 1941 and for 21 years, in addition to full teaching work, he was Adj Pref Studies and Master of Ceremonies in the Church. In this latter work he maintained the high standard of training of Mass Servers which he had reached in the Crescent.
He also continued his former interest in Musical Drama and produced Operettas in Irish each year for prize day. His Drama Groups won many first places at the Féile Drámaíochta in the Taibhdhearc. Many of those dramas he translated from French into Irish.
He carried on Fr Ó Brolcháin's work of training the boys in Irish dancing and his groups won prizes for their four-hand reels,
He was marked down in the Catalogue as “Doc an. 48” and all these years he was completely dedicated to this work. With his great gifts he was a man of singular reserve and self-effacement.
His special interest in promoting the use of Irish as a spoken language in the College had remarkable results and an Inspector from the Department commented on this as a remarkable achievement.
Fr Ward, despite the reserve alluded to, was a very pleasant companion and excellent Community man; a ripe sense of humour enabled him to enter into the cajolery of recreation and with such company as Fr C Perrott, Fr A O'Reilly, Fr Fitzgibbon and Fr Cashman the time passed regularly in even an hilarious fashion. This same bonhomie entered into his dealings with the boys, pupils and altar-servers. He gained their confidence and would recount on occasions quiz-questions and stories he had picked up in their company. He was devoted to his work and could not suffer it to be scamped but even then he would have a laughable encounter to tell about, something he had wormed out of an uncommunicative culprit who was awed by the mock-severity of his teacher's approach.
During the last few years of his life he suffered much from arthritis, but he bore it all in heroic fashion without complaint. Such was his devotion to his work that he won the admiration of parents and boys, who will remember for many years his unselfish devotion to their interests.
The Mayor and Corporation of Galway sent a letter of sympathy to Fr Rector and Community on his death. Ar dheis Dé go raibh & anam.

Peterson, Robert J, 1892-1970, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1979
  • Person
  • 17 October 1892-19 March 1970

Born: 17 October 1892, Richmond, Victoria, Australia
Entered: 31 October 1910, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained 26 July 1925. Posilopo, Naples
Final Vows: 02 February 1929, Corpus Christi College, Werribee, Australia
Died: 19 March 1970, St Vincent’s Hospital, Fitzroy - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the Loyola College, Watsonia, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1916 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1921 in Australia - Regency
by 1924 in San Luigi, Napoli-Posilipo, Italy (NAP) studying
by 1928 at St Andrä, Austria (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Robert Peterson was educated at St Ignatius, Richmond, and St Patricks College, East Melbourne, and was in the public service briefly before entering the Society at Tullabeg, 31 October 1910. He was a university junior, 1912-15, and then studied philosophy at Jersey, 1915-18. He taught at Mungret for a few years before returning to Australia in 1920, where he taught at St Patrick's College, 1920-23. Theology studies followed at Posilopo, Naples, 1923-27, and tertianship at St Andra, Austria, 1927-28.
When he returned to Australia he went to Corpus Christi College, Werribee, and remained there until 1967. During these years he professed at various times fundamental theology, dogmatic theology, church history, psychology, biology, and taught French and Italian, He also instructed the students in liturgy and rites from 1935. He was consultor, 1930-66, prefect of studies, 1931-64, dean of discipline, 1939, editor of the “Jesuit Ordo of the Mass”, 1943-61, and in the last two years, professor of the history of culture and Western civilisation.
He was a good musician and amateur carpenter. His room contained gramophone records, fishing tackle, art reproductions, and carpentry tools. Each of his activities required special garb, such as overalls for carpentry, gumboots for fishing and an old coat for using the Gestetner copier.
In his early days he was a member of the college choir and the college orchestra. There was one piece in which he played half a dozen notes solo on his clarinet. This participation was at great cost to the player, but provided much entertainment to the students. His life was full of earnest activity and work, but he cherished a secret passion for listening to the wrestling on the radio.
He was the perfect secretary This was due not only to his tidiness, but above all to a humility by which he regarded himself as only suitable for doing the hack work while more talented men made use of him.
His last few years were lecturing in Christian art at Loyola College, Watsonia. All his life he spoke in clipped sentences. He peered at people benignly through rimless glasses, and displayed black, disciplined hair above a high, scholarly forehead. He winced at the Australian accent, and deplored the students' delight in Gilbert and Sullivan.
Peterson's work was solid and painstaking; he wasn't over-imaginative and his classes weren't exactly scintillating, but they were clear and precise. His lectures were punctuated now and again with an awkward sort of flight into poetry He was black and white in his opinions. He was also a man of culture who liked the fine things in life. He loved the classics both in literature and music. He produced drama, such as “Murder in the Cathedral”. It was a great success, and a good vehicle for a professor of eloquence to demonstrate his art!
Peterson also had a great love for cricket. He enjoyed watching games at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. He was not good in company, finding it hard to mix with others. but he did make some close friends and especially among families.
He was a very learned man and a hard worker. His spirituality was classical and austere, and a gentle melancholy was part of his temperament. Yet he had the Ignatian capacity for fun, and enjoyed his participation in college musical concerts. Those who did not know him well might have thought him a poseur, especially in regard to the fine arts. This was due to his desire always to say and do the right thing.
He sustained a stroke in the latter years of his life and his powers were very much reduced. He died on the feast of St Joseph after being a patient at St Vincent's Hospital for half a year.

Kelly, Michael, 1892-1964, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/742
  • Person
  • 14 November 1892-19 January 1964

Born: 14 November 1892, Talbotstown, Kiltegan, County Wicklow
Entered: 05 October 1911, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1924, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 2 February 1929. Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 19 January 1964, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner St, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Studied for BA at UCD

by 1918 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1928 at St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 39th Year No 2 1964

Obituary :

Fr Michael Kelly SJ

Father Michael Kelly came as a small boy to Clongowes and left it in 1911 an undisputed leader and the most popular boy in the school. A good worker of average ability he had athletic gifts which transcended limitations of physique and made him an excellent Rugby centre three quarter and a fine attacking batsman. A new boy in his last year worshipped him from afar and has for fifty years esteemed a characteristic memory of him. He is returning to the pavilion with “134 not out” to his credit. Beside him marches Bill Dundon, head erect and rightly proud of his 60. Father Michael's bat trails, he is only up to his companion's shoulder and his head is a little bent and his eyes on the ground. This score still stands as the record for a Clongowes boy in an out-match, Three years later there was another glimpse: this time of a Jesuit Scholastic in procession to the High Mass which celebrated the centenary of Clongowes.
There followed a degree in history and after three years philosophy, he returned to Clongowes, surprisingly enough, not as a prefect but as a teacher of history when history was being made in Ireland. Again it was to Clongowes he came after his priestly studies. This time as Higher Line Prefect and then as priest-prefect of the Third Line-something of an innovation and certainly a successful one. Already the ill health which was to cause him so much suffering-patiently even heroically borne through all the years to come—was a serious menace. After a second period as Higher Line Prefect the doctors intervened and he took up that dull and obscure office of Prefect of the Big Study. He must have felt the change but he never showed it. There is a special bond between a Prefect of Studies and a Study Prefect and the man who had the blessing of Father Kelly's advice and help and sympathy for the next three years is not likely to forget the generosity and self-effacement Father Kelly showed. In 1936 he was made Minister - a position he occupied for the then unprecedented period of ten years. They included the war years, with exceptional problems of fuel and transport and food, with which Father Minister coped so effectively that there were no serious hardships. Special crises, indeed, there were a foot and mouth epidemic that called for a difficult isolation policy; the worst series of epidemics the school had in recent years. With such affairs Father Kelly dealt with an energy and resource that often deceived people as to their magnitude.
Peace had come and after an unequalled and unbroken record of service to a school that he loved with fervour but without fanaticism, he was called on to start an entirely new life. For almost twenty years he gave to Gardiner Street Church and its people an equally unstinting service-a service which included the direction of one of the great Sodalities, charge of the Boys' Club as well as countless hours of unrecorded but invaluable advice in the confessional and the parlour.
A Jesuit who knew him well described as his outstanding quality loyalty in the very best sense of the word. As a boy Father Michael had Father T. V. Nolan as his Rector, Father John Sullivan as Spiritual Father, and Father George Roche as Higher Line Prefect. For them all and especially for the last named he had a deep and lasting respect and gratitude. For Father Kelly was one of the many boys who owed their vocation under God, in part at least, to the bed time visits which the Higher Line Prefect regularly made to the senior boys. At Father Roche's jubilee celebrations he told of the deep and lasting impression made on him by a few words on the true order of priorities spoken on a night many years before to a boy flushed with joy in a big athletic success in which his share had been notable. His was the sort of loyalty which strove to repay in kind what he himself had received. His school friends Jimmy Gaynor, Tom Finlay and Tom Duggan had meant and continued to mean, alive or dead, very much to him. To generations of boys at school and of men and women in the parish, he gave his help with a warm confidence that not even his extreme modesty could curtail and which his utter lack of ambition made the more acceptable. He might well have become vain in the days of his prowess on the playing field, but he was to the end almost distressingly modest. Immensely popular, he certainly never courted popularity and scarcely seemed to know the esteem in which he was held. Yet few Jesuits have won so many grateful and enduring friends and he made no enemies. This was partly the result of his unfailing courtesy and gentleness. “A fine gentleman” as one of his subalterns described him in his last days. Perhaps still more it was a refusal on the part of a really sensible man to allow opposition or misunderstanding to embitter him. The success of others meant far more to him than any achievement of his own. But with all his tolerance and sympathy he was a man of unbending principle and, when it was necessary, of firm action, An unequalled judge of character, he did not conceive of rule or influence by fear or bluff or deceit, and in practice almost invariably got the best out of those for whom he worked.
That such a man should have borne the very severe pain of a long final illness heroically is not surprising; that to the end he could reward the affection and gratitude of those he had befriended with unfailing humility and tenderness, must be their consolation, Father Kelly was indeed a Christ-like man and in the extreme of suffering like Christ his thought was for others. To his much loved family we offer our sincere condolences.

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

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

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

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 17th Year No 1 1942

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

Irish Province News 58th Year No 3 1983

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


Fr Aubrey Gwynn (1892-1912-1983)

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

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 30 : December 1983


Sister Sheila Lucey

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Hogan, William, 1895-1964, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1457
  • Person
  • 08 April 1895-27 May 1964

Born: 08 April 1895, Castleisland, County Kerry
Entered: 07 September 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1929, St Aloysius College, Milsons Point, Sydney, Australia
Died: 27 May 1964, Mater Hospital, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the St Aloysius College, Milson’s Point, Sydney, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1917 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1928 at St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
William Hogan received his secondary education from the Cistercian College Roscrea monks at Roscrea, and amongst other things was reputed to have played on the wing for the first XV. He entered the Society at Tullabeg, 7 September 1912, and then went to Rathfarnharn Castle, Dublin, for his juniorate. Philosophy was studied at Jersey in the Channel Islands, 1916-17, and on his return to Ireland he went to teach at Belvedere College, Dublin, 1919-21. These were troubled times in Ireland, when feelings were strong and the atmosphere was tense. He had many friends amongst the organisers of the 1916 rebellion and afterwards. Superiors may have thought he was becoming too deeply involved in matters politic, for he was transferred to Mungret, to complete his magisterium, 1921-23. Theology was studied at Milltown Park, Dublin, 1923-27, where he acquired a reputation as a moral theologian amongst his contemporaries. He was ordained on 31 July 1926, and tertianship followed at St Beuno's, Wales.
Hogan sailed for Australia in 1928, arriving in Sydney in September. Then began his long association with St Aloysius' College, Milsons Point. Except for three years spent as minister at Xavier College, Kew, 1937-39, which he humorously referred to as “the years of captivity”, the rest of his life in Australia was spent in the service of St Aloysius' College.
Hogan belonged to the college, and spent over 32 years on the staff, a respected teacher and sometime minister and bursar. He organised the transport passes for the students. He loved mathematical calculations, and was a good mathematics teacher. He had a passion for rulers and measuring tapes, while his judgment on moral cases was second to none. He could hold a religion class of young boys with the clarity and cogency of his arguments. He was always kind and encouraging to his students.
He was a shy, retiring man with a sparkling sense of humour. His usually stern countenance could relax with an inimitable and infectious grin-the preface of some priceless remark. He was appointed sports master in 1929, and had many stories to tell of that eventful year - how the boys were almost decapitated by an unusually strong finishing tape; how he solved the problem of whether to play back or forward on a wet wicket. As a young man he taught Leaving Certificate modern history, and his students recalled the sidelights and biographical notes not to be found in textbooks. He was an avid reader with sound retentive powers. He was a meticulous minister, his books always carefully up to date, and the keys hung in well-labelled order. Everything was done with great precision.
He had a devotion to the Holy Souls, and kept a record of the date of the death of each Jesuit that he knew and each Old Boy that he had taught, so that he could pray for each on his
anniversary. He was remarkable for his personal and idiosyncratic practice of poverty. Towards the end he suffered a mild cerebral spasm and later a stroke from which he died. He was buried from the college he had served so well.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 39th Year No 4 1964

Obituary :
About the middle of March 1964, Fr. Hogan suffered what the doctor described as a mild cerebral spasm. Anxious not to cause any trouble and hoping that the disability would pass he kept silent about it. He tried to carry on the work of bursar, which he had so efficiently and faithfully done for many years but found that it was no longer possible. The doctor who was called to him (Dr. L'Estrange), ordered his immediate removal to hospital and he entered the Mater Miserecordiae Hospital on Saturday, 20th March. In a short time his speech improved greatly, he got back the power of his right arm and was able, with the aid of the nurses, to walk a little around the room each day. He still had difficulty marshalling his thoughts. He would begin a sentence and find that he could not finish it. When this occurred he gave a shrug of his shoulders, grinned and said “no good”.
About the middle of May, he suffered a renewed attack and the right arm had to be placed back in splints. When asked if he would like to be anointed he said yes, and this was done at once. He was able to receive Holy Communion up to a few days before his death. Then came a series. of attacks and it was obvious that the end was approaching. He suffered a severe one about 2.30 a.m. on Thursday, 25th May and lapsed into a coma. Fr. Rector went at once to the hospital, gave him absolution, anointed (he said “yes”, when asked if he wished it) He was able to receive until shortly before 5 a.m. on Saturday morning when the hospital rang again to say he was dying. Fr. Rector was with him to the end and gave him a final absolution as he left this world about seven o'clock as many of the community were about to offer Mass for him. He belonged to St. Aloysius, having spent over thirty-two years on the staff, so we felt that he would prefer to be buried from here. His remains were brought to the college chapel on Sunday night and next morning all the boys had an opportunity to offer the holy sacrifice for the repose of his soul. His funeral Mass was on the following day and His Eminence Cardinal Gilroy kindly came to preside at the Requiem offered by Fr. Rector. The boys formed an impressive guard of honour as the body was borne from the chapel. How embarrassed he would have been had he witnessed this last tribute to him! His weary bones rest at last with Fr. Tom Hehir in the Jesuit plot at Gore Hill.
It would take someone more competent than the writer to give a pen picture of Bill Hogan in a few sentences. Born in Co. Kerry in 1895, he received his secondary education from the Cistercian Monks at Roscrea and amongst other things was reputed to have played on the wing for the 1st XV. He entered the Society at Tullabeg and after satisfying the authorities there, as to his suitability, he went to Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin, for his Juniorate. Philosophy was studied at Jersey in the Channel Islands and on his return to Ireland he went to teach at Belvedere College in Dublin. These were troubled times when feelings were strong and the atmosphere was electric. He had many personal friends amongst the organisers of 1916 and afterwards. Superiors may have thought he was becoming too deeply involved in matters politic for he was transferred to Limerick to complete his magisterium. Theology was studied at Milltown Park, Dublin, where he acquired a reputation as a moral theologian amongst his contemporaries. His stories of life in “Plug Street” then, were always worth hearing.
He was ordained on 31st July 1926. Tertianship completed at St. Bueno's, he sailed for Australia in 1928, arriving in Sydney in September. Thus began his long association with St. Aloysius. Except for the three years spent as Minister in Xavier College, Melbourne, which he humorously referred to as “the years of captivity” the rest of his life in Australia was spent in the service of S.A.C.
He was a shy, retiring man with a sparkling sense of humour. His usually stern countenance could relax with that inimitable and infectious grin - the preface of some priceless remark. He was appointed Sports master in 1929 and had many stories to tell of that eventful year - how the boy was almost decapitated by an unusually strong finishing tape how he solved the problem of whether to play back or forward on a wet wicket, etc.
As a younger man he taught Leaving Certificate modern history and many of his students can still recall the sidelights and biographical notes not to be found in textbooks. He was an avid reader with great retentive powers. When he left for the hospital his books were all up to date, everything in its place and carefully dated. He had a great devotion to the holy souls and kept a record of the date of the death of each Jesuit that he knew and each Old Boy that he had taught, so that he could pray for each on his anniversary.
If were there was a faithful servant of St. Aloysius College, he was one. and we pray that he is enjoying the reward of all faithful servants.

McCullough, Joseph P, 1892-1932, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/281
  • Person
  • 05 December 1892-27 June 1932

Born: 05 December 1892, Belfast, County Antrim
Entered: 31 August 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1924, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1929, Robinson Road, Hong Kong
Died 27 June 1932, Sacred Heart College, Canton, China (Died of cholera)

by 1918 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1928 at St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship
by 1929 Joined second batch Hong Kong Missioners

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 7th Year No 4 1932
Obituary :
Our mission in China has suffered grave loss by the deaths of two of its most zealous missioners, Our hope is that the willing sacrifice of their lives will bring down the blessing of God on the mission, and help in the gathering of a rich harvest of souls for Christ.

Fr Joseph McCullough
On the 27th June Father McCullough died at Canton of cholera. He caught the disease while devotedly attending Father Saul.
He was born in Belfast, 5th December, 1892, educated at Mungret, and began his novitiate at Tullabeg, 31st August 1914. After one year's juniorate at Tullabeg he was sent to Stonyhurst for philosophy. In 1917 our Irish philosophers owing to war troubles, were called home, and located at Milltown. Here he finished philosophy, and then spent two years in
Clongowes. Four years theology at Milltown, a year's teaching at Mungret, and tertianship at St. Beuno's brought him to the year 1928, when he sailed for China. He lived for one year with the Portuguese Fathers in Shiuhing, where he managed to teach English to about forty Chinese boys, using, as well as he could, their own language. Next year saw him Minister at Sacred Heart College, Canton, where he became an excellent teacher of the higher classes, and made such progress in the language that he was able to preach from the pulpit of the Canton Cathedral. His qualities of heart and his gaiety endeared him to many of the boys, and this influence was invaluable the following year when, in trying circumstances, he was appointed Superior of the College.
The Japanese boycott, the anti-foreign feeling in student circles paralysed the discipline in the Canton schools, and Sacred Heart College did not escape. Often during the year heroic
patience was required to keep the classes at work, and better than anyone else Father McCullough succeeded. He had become an intimate friend of many of the leading Chinese pagan boys. Their conversion was not to be hoped for at the moment. But, now that Father McCullough is reaping the reward of his brave efforts, we trust that his prayers will complete the work he had so well begun.
He was so well known that. a short time before his death a Convent of Chinese Sisters had invited him to give a retreat in Chinese to their pupils.
The following sketch is by Father M. Kelly who lived with him for a great many years before he went to China :
“It is difficult to think that he is dead, He was the embodiment of health and vigorous manhood when he left for China. During the last two years of theology he was Chaplain to the lncurable Hospital. There he did invaluable work. Being of a gay and cheerful disposition, it was really wonderful to see how the faces of the poor patients used to light up when they saw him approach. He always had a cheery word or a joke for every one. To bring a little brightness into the lives of such sufferers he got up any number of entertainments, securing the best artists in Dublin, even the famous Fritz Brass and his No. I Army Band. But he himself with his fine voice was always the most popular item with the patients.
On the purely spiritual side he worked even harder, and with conspicuous success. Many a deathbed was made easier by his presence, and not a few were won back to frequent the
Sacraments by his zeal and persistent efforts. Little wonder that, when leaving the hospital, the patients presented him with a beautiful watch, and that they were unfailing in their
prayers for his success in China.
As stated elsewhere Father McCullough sacrificed his life through his devotedness to Father Saul. It was not his only sacrifice. An intimate friend knows, and may now be pardoned for revealing, that he sacrificed his life's ambition when he accepted the invitation to go to China. Knowing that his abilities lay in the direction of preaching and giving retreats he worked assiduously during philosophy and theology preparing sermons and meditations-in the hope that eventually he would be chosen for the Mission staff in Ireland.
Towards the end of the Tertianship a letter came from Father Provincial asking him to go to China. It was utterly unexpected, and accepting, meant the renouncing of his life's
ambition. For two days he prayed for light and grace and then wrote his answer, a magnificent answer - he was willing to go if considered worthy. That meant his giving up the work.
for which he had prepared so long and so carefully, it meant leaving for ever a country that he dearly loved - he belonged to a family that for generations had been intimately connected with every popular movement in Ireland But, under a gay and lighthearted exterior, Father McCullough was an exact and zealous religious, and when the call came for a big sacrifice it got a reply that was really heroic.
May God reward him, and, by his death and that of his fellow worker, Father Saul, may He bless and strengthen our young mission, that has the sympathy of every one in the
Province in the loss of two such zealous workers.”

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Joseph McCullough 1892-1932
Fr Joseph McCullough was a martyr of charity in the exact sense of that hackneyed phrase, for he died of cholera contracted when nursing Fr Michael Saul, who also died of cholera.
Fr McCullough was a Belfast man, born in that city on December 5th 1892. He was one of the pioneer members of our Hong Kong Mission in 1928. He became so proficient in the Chinese language that he was able to give retreats to Chinese girls in a convent run by Chinese nuns.
The keynote to his life was zeal for souls. All during his scholasticate he prepared himself for retreats and missions. His qualities of heart and spontaneous gaiety endeared him to any of the pagan boys he met in Canton and which greatly helped him when appointed to the difficult post of Superior of our College in that turbulent and faction ridden city.
He died on June 27th 1932, young in years but ripe in achievement.

Kelly, Austin Michael, 1891-1978, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/228
  • Person
  • 20 September 1891-1978

Born: 20 September 1891, Blackrock, County Dublin
Entered: 29 February 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1929, St Aloysius College, Milsons Point, Sydney, Australia
Died: 11 October 1978, Caritas Christi Hospice, Studley Park Rd, Kew, Victoria, Australia - Ranchiensis Province (RAN)

Part of the Manresa, Hawthorn, Melbourne, Australia at the time of death

Younger brother of Thomas P Kelly - RIP 1977

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931; ASL to RAN : 22 March 1956

Vice-Provincial Provincial Australia: 1 October 1947-1 November 1950
Provincial Australia: 1950-1956
Superior of the Australian Jesuit Mission to Hazaribagh Mission India : 1956-1962

by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1922 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
Transcribed HIB to ASL - 05 April 1931; ASL to RAN 22 March 1956

◆ Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University onlne
Kelly, Austin Michael (1891–1978)
by J. Eddy
J. Eddy, 'Kelly, Austin Michael (1891–1978)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, published first in hardcopy 1996

Catholic priest; school principal; schoolteacher

Died : 11 October 1978, Kew, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Austin Michael Kelly (1891-1978), Jesuit provincial and missionary, was born 20 September 1891 at Blackrock, County Dublin, Ireland, fifth child of Edward Kelly, commission agent, and his wife Teresa, née Burke. Educated at Belvedere College, Dublin (1903-08), and at the National University of Ireland (B.A., 1911), Austin entered the novitiate of the Society of Jesus on 29 February 1912 at Tullabeg and took his first vows on 1 March 1914. Following a short juniorate at Rathfarnham, he was sent in September 1914 to study philosophy at Stonyhurst College, Lancashire, England. He returned to Dublin and taught (1917-21) at Mungret College. In 1921-25 he studied theology at Louvain, Belgium, and was ordained priest on 31 July 1923.

After serving his tertianship at Tullabeg, Kelly was posted to Australia in 1926 as prefect of discipline and sportsmaster at Xavier College, Melbourne. On 15 August 1929 he took his final vows. He was minister (1928-30) and rector (1931-37) of St Aloysius' College, Milson's Point, Sydney, and founding rector (1938-47) of St Louis School, Claremont, Perth, the first Jesuit establishment in Western Australia. Cultured, deeply pious and meticulous, he was an outstanding headmaster, ever on the alert to encourage the initiatives of the young teachers he was training, even when he would not himself have done the things they were doing, or done them the way they did. He soon became one of the most prominent and influential churchmen in Perth, and a trusted adviser to ecclesiastical and secular leaders.

In October 1947 Fr Kelly was appointed by Rome to head the Australian province of the order, which, from his base in Melbourne, he steered towards final autonomy from the Irish Jesuits. In 1950-56 he had charge of the newly created Australian and New Zealand province. He judged that the increased membership of the order—which was growing towards its maximum of three hundred and fifty—justified expansion of its works, and he seized the initiative by undertaking the management of new schools, parishes and university colleges in Hobart, Adelaide and Brisbane. Businesslike and energetic, Kelly exerted to the full the organising ability that his long experience in office had honed. His determination, rhetorical skill and wide circle of influence ensured that the works of the order, and with their success its morale, would flourish.

Some considered his standards impossibly high and his manner unduly autocratic. When he accepted, on behalf of the Australian Jesuits, the challenge of maintaining a foreign mission in Bihar, India, and when the first group of six were sent to Ranchi in 1951, a few critics warned that resources would be overstretched. In this enterprise, however, as in many of his projects, Kelly's thinking was far ahead of his time. He long held that the considerable achievements of the Australians in the Hazaribagh-Palamau region ranked among the most visionary and generous national gestures of the period. On the conclusion of his provincialate in Australia he was appointed superior of the Hazaribagh Mission, and set off in September 1956 on a new phase of what had, in many respects, always been a missionary career.

In Bihar, Kelly was in some ways ill-attuned to the national style which the Australian Jesuits had adapted to India, and his health had become impaired. But he doggedly saw out six years of administration, planning, exhortation and visitation; and he enlarged the foundations of the mission by liaison with an expanding number and variety of religious and secular 'co-missionaries'. In 1962 he returned to reside at the Jesuit Church of the Immaculate Conception at Hawthorn, Melbourne, where he was based (except for the year 1964 which he spent at Lavender Bay, Sydney) until he went in 1974 to Caritas Christi hospice, Kew. He died there on 11 October 1978 and was buried in Boroondara cemetery.

Impressively able, distinguished in appearance, urbane, energetic and imaginative, Kelly was a remarkable 'lace-curtain' Irishman who had become an enthusiastic and loyal patriot in his adopted country. He was impatient of the mediocre, a practical leader rather than a natural scholar, and he remained a staunchly private man, despite his whole-hearted pursuit of public goals and cultivation of a wide circle of prominent friends. Very dedicated to the educational and spiritual projects of his Church and order, he was ecumenical in outlook and sustained a lifetime cultivation of books, fine arts, music and theatre.

Select Bibliography
U. M. L. Bygott, With Pen and Tongue (Melb, 1980)
Sun News-Pictorial (Melbourne), 2 Oct 1947
Sydney Morning Herald, 12 Sept 1966
West Australian, 21 Oct 1978
Society of Jesus, Australian Province Archives, Hawthorn, Melbourne.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Austin Kelly was educated at the Jesuit school Belvedere College 1903-1908, and at te National University of Ireland (BA 1911) and entered the Society of Jesus 29 February 1912. After a short Juniorate at Rathfarnham Castle, he studied Philosophy at Stonyhurst, England from 1914. His Regency was an Mungret College 1917-1921. He went to Louvain for Theology, being ordained 31 July 1923. Tertianship was at Tullabeg, 1925, and he was solemnly professed 15 August 1929.
He was appointed to Xavier College Kew, as Prefect of Discipline and Sportsmaster in 1926, and then sent to St Aloysius College, Milsons Point from 1928-1937, being Rector from 1931. He was founding Rector of St Louis School, Perth, 1938, and was appointed Vice-Provincial in 1947, and Provincial from 1950-1956. Then he became Superior of the Australian Mission in Hazaribag, India, 1956-1962. Ill health forced his return to Australia, and to the Hawthorn Parish, Melbourne, 1963, where he remained until his death.
Cultured, deeply pious and meticulous, , he was a good rector in the schools, ever on the alert to encourage initiatives of the young teachers he was training, even when he would not himself have done the things they were doing, or done them the way the did. As Rector, he emphasised the importance of traditional Jesuit education, as outlined in the “Ratio Studiorum”, as well as the importance of producing good Christian gentlemen in the tradition of the English Public School.
In Perth, he soon became one of the most prominent and influential churchmen, and a trusted advisor to ecclesiastical and secular leaders.
It was during his term as Vice-Provincial that he steered the Province towards final autonomy from the Irish Jesuits. In 1950, the Region was created a full Province under Austin Kelly’s guidance. He judged that the increased membership of the Order, which was growing towards 350, justified expansion of its works, and he seized the initiative by undertaking the management of new schools, parishes and University Colleges in Hobart, Adelaide and Brisbane. Business-like and energetic, he exerted to the full the organising ability that his long experience in office had honed. His determination, rhetorical skill and wide circle of influence ensured that the success and morale of the works flourished.
Some considered his standards impossibly high, and his manner as unduly autocratic. When he accepted, on behalf of the Australian Jesuits, the challenge of maintaining a foreign mission in Bihar, India, and when the first group of six were sent to Ranchi in 1951, a few critics warned that resources would be over-stretched. In this enterprise, however, as in many of his projects, his thinking was so far ahead of his time.
In founding the Mission, he realised a lifetime ambition. He had always wanted to e a missionary, and in many respects he had always had a missionary career. It was recounted that when the question of when to make Australia a Province was being discussed, it was only he who wanted it in 1950. Many believed the timing was not right, but he wanted to start a Mission, and higher Superiors gave in to his wishes.
When he went to Bihar himself in 1956, he was in some ways ill attuned to the national style that the Australian Jesuits had adapted to in India, and his health became impaired. Bur, he doggedly saw our six years of administration, planning, exhortation and visitations, and he enlarged the foundations of the Mission by liaising with an expanding number and variety of religious and secular “co-missionaries”.
Impressively able as well as distinguished in appearance, urbane, energetic and imaginative, he was a remarkable “lace-curtain” Irishman, who had become an enthusiastic and loyal patriot of his adopted country. He was impatient of the mediocre, a practical leader rather than a natural scholar, and he remained a staunchly private man, despite his wholehearted pursuit of public goals and cultivation of a wide circle of prominent friends. Very dedicated to the educational and spiritual projects of his Church and order, he was ecumenical in outlook and sustained a lifetime cultivation of books, fine arts and music.

Note from Thomas Perrott Entry
He spent the rest of his working life at St Louis School, Perth. He helped Austin Kelly set up the school in 1938.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 4 1948

Fr. Leo Donnelly who has been offered to the Viceprovince of Australia, completed his course at Kurseong recently (he was professor of Church History) and sailed on the SANGOLA for Hong Kong on 10th September. “As it proves impossible”, he writes, “to secure a passage direct to Australia within reasonable time, Fr. Austin Kelly has given me permission to travel via Hong Kong. It was quite easy to book a passage to that port, and Fr. Howatson has booked a berth for me from there to Melbourne. Needless to say, I am delighted at the chance of seeing the Mission, even if I am not to stay there. The ship for Australia will not sail till near the end of October, so that I shall not be at Fr. Kelly's disposal till sometime in November. This, however, is quicker than waiting for a direct passage”.

Gates, Joseph, 1889-1947, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1352
  • Person
  • 20 March 1889-19 July 1947

Born: 20 March 1889, Killyman, County Tyrone
Entered: 10 September 1909, Tullabeg
Ordained: 15 August 1921, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1929, Corpus Christi College, Werribee, Australia
Died: 19 July 1947, St Mary’s, Miller St, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1913 at Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands (TOLO) studying

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
He was a tall and well built colourful Northern Irishman who Entered the Society at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg.

1911-1915 He was sent for Juniorate to Milltown Park Dublin and then to Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands for Philosophy
1915-1918 He was sent to Mungret College Limerick and Clongowes Wood College for Regency
1918-1922 He was back at Milltown Park for Theology
1922-1923 he made Tertianship at Tullabeg
1923-1925 He was sent to Australia teaching at St Aloysius College Sydney
1925-1926 He was sent to work at the Norwood Parish
1926-1931 He was sent to Sevenhill where he was appointed Superior and Parish Priest
1931-1933 He was sent back teaching at St Ignatius College Riverview
1933-1936 He was sent to the Lavender Bay Parish
1937-1938 He was at the Richmond Parish
1939-1942 He was sent to the Toowong Parish
1942 He was sent to St Mary’s Parish in Sydney where he died.

He held very extreme views and was very anti-British, and yet he was kind a friendly in any personal dealings. He was a gifted, hardworking and orderly man, and not necessarily the easiest of people to live with due to the passionate views he held. As such he didn’t stay in any one house for very long.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 22nd Year No 3 1947
Obituary :
Obituary :
Fr. Joseph Gates (1887-1909-1947)
Joseph Gates was born at Drumkee, Killyman, Moy, Co. Tyrone on March 20th, 1887, of farmer stock. He was the youngest of four sons and he had seven sisters. He was educated at. the National School in Drunkee, and went at the age of fourteen to Dungannon Academy, where he spent five years, 1901-6, and then to Armagh Seminary for three years, passing the First Arts Examination in 1909.
He entered the Society at Tullabeg on September 10th, 1909, and after the noviceship spent a year at Milltown attending University lectures, Philosophy followed at Gemert in Holland. In 1916 he was teaching in Mungret, in 1918 at Clongowes, doc. ling: gall, et math. He was ordained in Milltown on August 15th, 1921 and during his fourth year of theology took his place in the long line of chaplains to the Royal Hospital for Incurables. After tertianship (Tullabeg, 1922-3) he was sent to Australia.
From his arrival in Australia until his death Fr. Gates was most of the time operarius in various houses, St, Aloysius' in Sydney, Norwood and Sevenhill in South Australia, Richmond in Victoria, Lavender Bay, Brisbane, and finally Miller Street in North Sydney. He was also at different times Minister, Procurator, Spiritual Father, Superior (in Sevenhill), Editor of the Jesuit Directory and Editor of a parish magazine. He taught at Riverview and St. Aloysius.
Fr. Gates was the author of several booklets, published by the Messenger Office, Dublin, dealing with Catholic Apologetics. Among them were “Rampar Dan”, “The Wee Mare”, “Sleepy Hallow”. He did much in his earlier years as a Jesuit to promote sympathetic contacts between Irish Catholics and their separated Protestant brethren of the northern counties. A man of charming gaiety and rare zeal, he laboured incessantly to promote the cause of religion in the country of his adoption. Fr. Gates died in Sydney on July 19th. May he rest in peace.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Joseph Gates 1887-1947
Fr Joseph Gates was from the North, being born at Drumkee County Tyrone on March 20th 1887. He was educated at Armagh Seminary, obtaining a First Arts there in 1909.

Entering the Society in 1909, he went through the ordinary course, , doing his Colleges in Mungret and Clongowes. After his ordination he was sent to Australia, where he served faithfully in many capacities, including editorship of the Jesuit Year Book.

He had a flair for writing, and the Messenger Office published a number of pamphlets of his dealing with Apologetics : “Ramper Dan”; “The Wee Mare”; “Sleepy Hollow”. He was deeply interetsted in the question of the reunion of Catholics and Protestants, especially from his mown North, and he often lamented the loss of our Northern house at Dromore, and urges the acquiring of some other one in its place. He did much in his earlier years as a Jesuit to promote sympathetic contacts between Catholic and Protestant in the northern counties.

Perhaps we may say that his prayers and efforts are bearing fruit today?

He died in Sydney on July 19th 1947.

Burke-Gaffney, Thomas Noel, 1893–1958, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/973
  • Person
  • 26 December 1893–14 September 1958

Born: 26 December 1893, 9 Rathdown Terrace, Dublin
Entered: 17 February 1913, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1926, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1929, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 14 September 1958, Lewisham Hospital, Lewisham, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, Australia at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1917 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1921 in Australia - Regency
by 1928 at St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Wales (ANG) making Tertianship
◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
His early education was at Belvedere College SJ before he entered the Society at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg.

1915-1916 After First Vows he was at University College Dublin for his Juniorate
1916-1919 He was sent for Philosophy to St Aloysius, Jersey and Milltown Park, Dublin
1919 he was sent to Australia for Regency. He spent one year at Xavier College Kew (1919-1920) and then to St Ignatius Riverview as an Assistant Prefect of Discipline and a Teacher (1920-1922)
1922-1927 He returned to Ireland for Theology at Milltown Park.
1727-1728 He made tertianship at St Beuno’s, Wales.
1929-1946 He returned to Australia and St Ignatius Riverview, where he was assistant Minister, Senior Science Teacher and took care of the Rowing.
1945-1950 He was appointed Assistant Director of the Observatory at Riverview
1950 He was appointed Director of the Observatory at Riverview after Daniel O’Connell was appointed to the Vatican Observatory. He was particularly good at interpreting seismic patterns, and he picked up the Bikini atomic explosion, which was considered a security risk at the time he informed the US authorities. he was also the author of a number of scientific papers, the best known of which was probably “The Seismological and Related Aspects of the 1954 Hyrdogen Bomb Explosion”, which he wrote in conjunction with Professor KE Bullen, and was published in the “Australian Journal of Physics” in 1957.
He was a keen scientist. Teaching Physics he improvised brilliantly. he created the “Gaffoscope”, a device to illustrate the action of magnetic lines. His chief interest probably lay in Biology. he was very interested in wild life, especially snakes, which he dealt with fearlessly. But the most valuable part of his teaching probably was his devotion to truth that he instilled in his students and the appreciation he gave them by his own example of meticulous and untiring work.

As a Spiritual Father to the community, he was remembered for his monthly talks. They were simple, practical and solid, and expressed in an English of rare dignity and beauty, but more importantly their impact came from the fact that they were so clearly the principles that ruled his own austere life, the life of a man clearly dedicated to God and the truth.

He was a reserved man, very faithful to his duties and was an exemplary religious.. His observance of obedience was very strict, and he worked until just before his death. He was also a gentle man, considered too sensitive for the boys of Riverview who did not treat him kindly.

◆ Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University online :
Burke-Gaffney, Thomas Noel (1893–1958)
by G. P. Walsh
G. P. Walsh, 'Burke-Gaffney, Thomas Noel (1893–1958)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, published first in hardcopy 1993, accessed online 1 July 2020.

Died 14 September 1958 : Lewisham, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

astronomer; Catholic priest; schoolteacher; seismologist

Thomas Noel Burke-Gaffney (1893-1958), Jesuit priest, seismologist and astronomer, was born on 26 December 1893 at 9 Rathdown Terrace, Dublin, fourth son of Thomas Burke Gaffney, valuer, and his wife Jenny, née O'Donnell. Educated in 1901-12 at Belvedere College, Dublin, Noel entered the Jesuit novitiate at Tullabeg on 17 February 1913. He attended science lectures at the National University of Ireland in 1915-16 and in 1917-19 studied philosophy at Jersey, Channel Islands, and at Milltown Park, Dublin. After teaching at St Francis Xavier's College, Melbourne, in 1921, and at St Ignatius' College, Riverview, Sydney, in 1922-23, he returned to Ireland to complete his theology studies at Milltown Park where he was ordained priest on 31 July 1926.

In September 1928 he returned to Riverview where he taught science until becoming assistant-director of Riverview College Observatory in 1946 (director from 1952). Although Burke-Gaffney was a dedicated and unorthodox teacher of physics who used ingenious devices like his 'gaffoscope' to illustrate degaussing, he was a poor disciplinarian in the classroom, 'too gentle for the boys of Riverview'. Nevertheless, he was loved by his pupils and famed for his little zoo of native animals—his 'gafferoos' as he called them—which delighted a loyal and devoted following of country boys. He possessed 'an uncanny ability to tame wild creatures', and instilled into his boys the importance and nobility of the natural sciences.

A keen and devoted scientist, Burke-Gaffney published papers on the seismicity of Australia, on the detection of S waves in the earth's inner core and on special phases from New Zealand earthquakes. His most notable contribution was four papers written with Professor K. E. Bullen on the seismic aspects of nuclear explosions, studies which attracted worldwide attention. Burke-Gaffney was the first to discover that nuclear explosions detonated at or near ground level showed up on seismographs. A council-member (1954-58) and vice-president (1957-58) of the Royal Society of New South Wales, he unstintingly helped many young seismologists and did valuable work as secretary-convenor of the sub-committee on seismology of the Australian national committee for the International Geophysical Year (1957-58).

Father Burke-Gaffney also carried out extensive work on variable stars. A man of great faith, he found it hard to understand how an astronomer could ever be an atheist: 'Astronomy', he said, 'constantly impresses you with the majesty of the Almighty, and the regularity of its laws presupposes the Lawgiver'.

Slightly built and somewhat self-effacing, Burke-Gaffney lived quietly and austerely. Few outside his college friends and scientific colleagues got to know him well, but those who did found him 'a charming and liberal-minded man, graced with a gentle dignity and a delightful humour'. Revered as an outstanding community member, he was truly—vir Deo deditus et veritati (a man dedicated to God and to the truth). He died of Hodgkin's disease on 14 September 1958 in Lewisham hospital and was buried in Gore Hill cemetery.

Select Bibliography
E. Lea-Scarlett, Riverview (Syd, 1989)
St Ignatius College, Riverview (Sydney), Our Alma Mater, 1952, 1957, 1958
Nature (London), 15 Nov 1958, p 1343
Australian Journal of Science, 21, 1958, p 133
Royal Astronomical Society, Monthly Notice, 119, 1959, p 344
Royal Society of New South Wales, Journal, 93, 1959, p 86
Belvederian (Dublin), 1959
Sydney Morning Herald, 16 Oct 1948, 9 Sept, 4 Oct 1952, 25 Apr 1953, 4 Mar 1954, 8 June, 3 July, 19 Sept 1957, 15 Sept 1958

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 34th Year No 1 1959
Obituary :
Fr Thomas Noel Burke-Gaffney (1893-1958)
With the death of Fr. Burke-Gaffney Australian geophysics and Jesuit science suffered a great loss. He was the director of the Riverview College Observatory since 1952, when the former director, Fr. D. O'Connell, was appointed to the Vatican Observatory, Castelgandolfo. He maintained and increased the reputation of Riverview as a first class observatory and the most important in the southern hemisphere. He carried on the work of his predecessors, the routine observations and measurements of stars and earthquakes, as begun by Fr. Pigot and continued by Fr. O'Leary and Fr. O'Connell.
Educated at Belvedere College, Fr. Burke-Gaffney entered Tullabeg, on 17th February, 1913, studied at the National University, did philosophy in Jersey and theology in Ireland and returned as a priest to Australia. At Riverview he was appointed senior science master. Always a scientist, his earlier interest was in biology and his “200” is remembered by former generations of Riverview boys. He taught physics for many years and in 1946 was appointed assistant to Fr. O'Connell in the observatory, Here he quickly mastered the routine work and became expert in the reading and interpretation of the records. As director he continued this work which is summed up in, the bulletins issued by the observatory. This should be reckoned his most important contribution to science on account of the excellence of the records and the accuracy of his measurements.
Fr. Burke-Gaffney played a valuable part in the Australian I.G.Y. programme on the national committee for seismology and was for several years a member of the council of the Royal Society of N.S.W. His published work includes seven papers on seismology mainly written in collaboration with Professor Bullen of the University of Sydney. The papers were concerned with the seismicity of Australia, the problem of discovering S waves in the earth's inner core, special phases from New Zealand earthquakes, and seismic aspects of nuclear explosions, The last work attracted world-wide attention, he was the first to publish the recordings of atomic explosions. Professor Bullen, in his presidential address to the International Association of Seismology in Toronto, 1957, on Seismology in Our Atomic Age paid full tribute to this work of Fr. Burke-Gaffney and in Nature (15th November, 1958) described him as one who “lived austerely and was one of Australia's most unassuming scientists and a man of quiet gentle dignity”. He was, moreover, spiritual father of his community, his exhortations are described as simple, practical, solid and expressed in English of rare dignity and beauty. He died on 14th September and was buried in Gore Hill cemetery. R.I.P.

Devane, Richard, 1876-1951, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/44
  • Person
  • 06 July 1876-23 May 1951

Born: 06 July 1876, Limerick
Entered: 30 July 1918, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 1901, St Patrick's College, Maynooth, County Kildare, pre Entry
Final Vows: 02 February 1929, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 23 May 1951, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

Ord pre entry; Early Education at Crescent College SJ, Mungret College and St Patrick’s College Maynooth

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Devane, Richard
by Maurice Cronin

Devane, Richard (1876–1951), Jesuit priest, was born 6 July 1876 at 29 William Street, Limerick, the eldest of three sons and two daughters of Cornelius Devane, merchant, and his wife, Joanna McCormack. His two brothers, John Devane (qv) and James Devane (qv) were medical doctors. Richard was educated at the Christian Brothers’ Sacred Heart College, Limerick, until 1889, and attended Crescent College until he was 17. After this he went to study in Mungret, and then attended St Munchin's seminary until he was 19, finishing his studies in Maynooth, where he was ordained in 1901. He was attached to St Patrick's church, Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, until 1904 when he returned to Limerick to a curacy at St Michael's and was also garrison chaplain for ten years. His parochial work included the direction of a conference of the Society of St Vincent de Paul and temperance sodalities for men and women, as well as running a large club for girls. He kept in close touch with labour circles in Limerick on whose behalf he inaugurated a series of lectures on industrial subjects. He was active in rescue and vigilance work, launching a crusade against evil literature, in which connection he published articles in the Dublin Leader. He was responsible for the introduction of a licence to regulate cinema shows, adopted by Limerick Borough Council, and a member of the Limerick technical committee.

He entered the Society of Jesus at St Stanislaus College, Tullamore, on 30 July 1918, being professed two years later. His first appointment with the Society was to the newly founded retreat house for working men at Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin, where he became the first director in 1922. There he remained organising retreats until 1932 and again from 1945 until his death. From 1933 to 1944 he was director of the retreat house at Milltown Park, Dublin. He was known for his great interest in social legislation and for twenty-five years specialised in an apostolate in favour of the young and their moral protection by legislative means. He did much to further acts dealing with film censorship (1923), censorship of publications (1929), legal redress for mother and offspring in irregular unions (1930), and public dance halls (1935) as well as the criminal law amendment act of the same year. The children's act (1942) set the seal on his practical interest in the fate of children. He published in 1942 Challenge from youth, a fully documented study of modern youth movements in other countries in which he pleaded for a catholic youth movement in Ireland based on a sound Christian philosophy. In another important work, The failure of individualism (1948), he traced the progress of individualism in the religious, political, and economic life of Europe and pleaded for the restoration of the organic structure of society. For many years he was a contributor to the daily press and to various periodicals. His correspondence covered a wide range of subjects touching the welfare of his countrymen: cinema control, dance hall problems, censorship, the imported press, parish councils, adult education, civics, summertime, the retreat movement, national athletics, and national film institutes.

Devane died 23 May 1951 at Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin.
Irish Jesuit Archives; Ir. Times, 24 May 1951

◆ Jesuits in Ireland :

Richard Devane SJ: Keeping the faith
If a screen writer were looking for one historic figure to stand in for all the Catholic clergymen who strove to ensure the social purity of the nascent Irish state in the early 20th century, Richard Devane SJ, subject of a new book from Messenger Publications, might be their man. Both as a diocesan priest and after he joined the Jesuits in 1938 at the age of 42, Devane worked tirelessly against what he saw as a rising tide of immorality assaulting the new Ireland. In the words of the book blurb for Richard Devane SJ: social commentator and advocate, 1876-1951 » by Martin Walsh, he was “a sometimes over-zealous gatekeeper of Irish culture and morals”.

Devane’s crusading began early in his priestly life. It appears to have been inspired by his first assignment after ordination in 1903, to Middlesborough, England, which had a burgeoning Irish immigrant population. Many of the Irish migrants worked in the growing number of iron foundries in the area, and they lived in considerable poverty. Devane’s experience there seems both to have instilled a strong nationalist sense in him and to have alerted him to the dangers of, in the words of Martin Walsh, “an altogether different set of English values, values that he would later see as running contrary to everything that he saw as pure about the Irish nation”. Cinemas, music halls, football games on Sunday, salacious newspapers, even more salacious books and ‘penny-dreadfuls’ – all of these and many other features of popular British culture horrified Devane. He made it his life’s task to keep this rot from his native land.

Back in Ireland Devane led many efforts to address what he saw as the single greatest threat to the state of morals in Ireland, namely the intemperance of both men and women. He had witnessed it in his native Limerick, where hard drinking in public was perhaps the natural effect of having 315 public houses in the city.

As well as his work with temperance societies, Devane fought to curb the proliferation of ‘evil literature’, to establish women’s sodalities, to get young women trained for lives of domestic service, to seek the regulation of cinemas so as to prevent the display of immoral films, and the like.

Devane also took a keen interest in the social conditions of the working classes, especially prompted by Pope Leo XIII’s 1891 encyclical Rerum Novarum. It appears to have been, for him, part of the bigger programme of preparing for a new Ireland after Home Rule.

In 1918, Fr Devane joined the Jesuits. For the remaining decades of his life he continued to spend his energies on addressing Catholic values and social problems in Ireland. He worked energetically to shut down prostitution in Dublin, and he tried to get the girls who worked in it to go to Magdalene Laundries. He was greatly exercised by the problem of unmarried motherhood in Ireland. To give him his due, he held that it was wrong that men were not held accountable for their actions in the same way as women were.

One surprising feature of Devane’s life is his role in the establishment of the Irish Film Institute. As he conceived it at the time, the IFI (or National Film Institute as it was known then) was designed to combat the ‘school of corruption’ in the motion picture industry, particularly through Hollywood’s depiction of extra- marital affairs, divorce and other American cultural phenomena from which the Irish people needed to be protected. The patron of the institute was Archbishop of Dublin John Charles McQuaid.

Devane was a man of his time. He provides us with a thick-lined portrait of a highly significant strain of Catholicism that was overt and powerful in Ireland in the decades after independence. It is a phenomenon that still needs to be studied closely, particularly given its traumatic impact on the Ireland of later generations. It is important, of course, to acknowledge the role of this Catholicism in creating shameful institutions and attitudes in Ireland, but one must see too that it was itself formed not just by attitudes within the Church but also by social, psychological, and cultural factors specific to Irish society at large. Martin Walsh’s book on Fr Devane SJ is helpful in this respect.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 26th Year No 3 1951

Obituary :

The Press notices on the death of Fr. Devane were generous in their tributes to his zealous endeavours throughout a long and varied priestly career. Indeed they synopsised the whole story of it so well that it will be sufficient to reproduce here the version found in the Irish Independent, May 24th, 1951 :

Rev. Richard S. Devane, S.J., whose death has occurred at Rathfarnham Castle, was one of the best-known members of the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus, and played a notable part for many years in the sphere of social legislation,
Born in Limerick 75 years ago, he was son of the late Cornelius Devane, a well known merchant of that city. Educated at the Sacred Heart College, Limerick, and at Mungret, he passed to St. Munchin's Seminary and to St. Patrick's College, Maynooth, where he was ordained in 1901.
For the next three years Father Devane worked on the English mission, being attached to St. Patrick's Church, Middlesborough. Returning to Limerick in 1904, he spent 14 years as curate at St. Michael's, in charge of a large working-class district. During the first ten years of this period, he was also garrison chaplain.

Father Devane kept in close touch with labour circles in the city, on whose behalf he inaugurated a series of lectures on industrial subjects. He was actively identified also with rescue and vigilance work : he launched a crusade against evil literature, and was responsible for the licence regulating cinema shows which was adopted by Limerick Borough Council. Along with these activities, he was a member of the Limerick Technical Committee.
In the summer of 1918 Father Devane entered the Society of Jesus at St. Stanislaus' College, Tullamore, and made his religious profession two years later. He was now to find more leisure and larger scope for his special talents. His first appointment was to the newly founded Retreat House for working men at Rathfarnham Castle, of which he became the first Director in 1922. Here he remained for ten years, and again from 1945 until his death, organising and conducting retreats and imparting to his hearers some of his own enthusiasm for the active apostolate and for social Catholicism. From 1933 to 1944 he was attached to the Retreat House at Milltown Park, Dublin in the same capacity.

Father Devane will, however, be chiefly remembered for his work in the sphere of social legislation. For over a quarter of a century he devoted his talents to a specialised apostolate in favour of the young, the promotion of legislation for their moral protection. He did much to place on the Statute Book of the Irish Free State Acts dealing with Censorship of Films (1923), Censorship of Publications (1929), Legal Redress for mother and offspring in irregular unions (1930), Public Dance Halls (1935), and the Criminal Law Amendment of the same year, an Act which dealt with many grave moral problems affecting the young.
The passing of the Children Bill of 1942, by which some provision was made for the education of the children of nomads set the seal on the practical interest which Father Devane had shown in the lot of gypsies and vagrants from the beginning of his priestly life.
The same year saw the publication of his book, “Challenge From Youth”, a fully documented study of modern youth movements in other countries, in which he pleaded for a Catholic Youth Movement in Ireland, based on a sound Christian philosophy. In another important work, “The Failure of Individualism”, published in 1948, he traced the progress of Individualism in the religious, political and economic life of Europe and pleaded for the restoration of the organic structure of society. ... For many years Father Devane was a constant contributor to the daily Press and to various periodicals. His active and facile pen covered a wide range of subjects touching the welfare of his countrymen - cinema control, dance hall problems, censorship, the imported Press, parish councils, adult education, civics, summer time, the retreat movement, national athletics, and national film institutes.

Fr. Richard's death was sudden indeed - he died in his sleep - but not unexpected either by himself or those about him. It was long knon that he suffered from high blood pressure and was liable to a fatal seizure at any moment. The least perturbed by this prospect was himself. His doctor brothers were both much more anxious. But they confessed inability to help in the matter, because the patient was immune from all those vices, major and minor, to which modern medicine men attribute hardening of the arteries and premature old age, There was no good in telling one who never drank anything to curtail his measure of wine, or in warning him to cut down his intake of nicotine when it was already a zero quantity. And so of the rest. The austerity cure was not applicable.
When they complained of this, a fellow Jesuit, who knew “Dick” well, hinted there was one “vice” they were overlooking, namely, his passion for the reforming of a world out of joint. If they could abate this a little, perhaps the fever in the blood might subside to what President Harding styled “normalcy” They answered that this was too much to hope for.
In truth if ever there was a born “Weltverbesserer” it was Fr. Richard. Not that he was a gloomy friar or a red-hot, hell and brimstone revivalist. He was really the happy warrior, for whom a crusade of some sort was a necessity of life. Some cynics hinted that he got quite a.”kick” from restricting the pleasures of others. But this was very unjust. He really only waged war on those basenesses in men and women which increased the misery of the community by multiplying social plagues of one kind or another. Perhaps his only error was that he thought legislation could do more for social amelioration than it can.
But he was right in resisting the false idea that because laws could not cleanse the heart within they were not be invoked at all to protect youth and innocence, oid age and poverty, the neglected and under privileged from the ravages of that satansim which we feel subtly at work under the decorous facade of modern civilised existence. And his knowledge of the problems he dealt with was acquired in the hard way of a personal apostolate. He came in contact with life under nearly all its aspects. And it is to his credit that this knowledge neither soured nor hardened him. Neither did it reduce him to listless despondency. His own morale was never shaken by consciousness of the odds against him in the fight for morality. He seemed to thrive on opposition. It merely stiffened his resolution.
His interests also were Catholic in the sense of universal. He was an integralist in the best meaning of the word. His faith was clear and simple. The Catholic way of life was the path of salvation, temporal and eternal, for individuals and nations alike. If that be bigotry, well he was a bigot - and being called one did not hurt at all. In fact his most salient characteristic was the meeting of criticism with natural and supernatural good humour. He made no bitter reply and bore no enmity. Hence that half serious and half humorous denigration which is such a feature of Irish life did not inhibit him in the least. Yet he was modest with all and began with an attempt to get others better qualified than himself to enter the breach. Only when they did not respond would he start out on his own. His “Failure of Individualism” Owed its origin to the failure of much more learned individuals to do a task he thought a need of the hour. Seeing the dons too disdainful of the red and pink intellectualism of which the most salient feature was its almost moronistic absence of intelligence (accompanied only too often by plain bad faith) he went about the job himself of tracing the process of the revolt against the faith in the sixteenth century through various stages of mental deliquescence, till it ended in the abandonment of reason by the very heirs of eighteenth century Rationalism and finally in the sheer Pyrrhonism of H. G. Wells, Bertrand Russell and the rest of the “forward-looking”, “progressive”, “creative”, “scientific” thinkers, whose logic lies in the use of question-begging epithets for themselves and their adversaries.
And he succeeded. Of course the dons were critical, and found fault. It was simply inevitable that in a book attempting to cover so much ground there would be scope for this. But by and large Fr. Richard's thesis was sound. The questions of detail which afforded matter for debate were neither numerous enough nor important enough to affect the solid value of the complete work,
Similarly his “Challenge from Youth”, though it did not come from a specialist in Pedagogy, as might seem suggested by the title, presented the reader with a whole mass of facts about Youth Movements, gleaned from official documents and out of the way sources, which showed the author as a very industrious maker up of briefs. He would have made a good chamber-lawyer.
But it was in working up a case for legal reform that he showed at his best (or worst, according to your point of view). It was here that his gadfly qualities came into play. Most men love the “quieta non movere” attitude to things that do not impinge upon their own consciousness. The Catholic spirit is supposed by non-Catholics to be eternally obsessed with a bitter zeal to impose itself upon the rest of mankind by guile, force, fraud and physical or moral intimidation. Whereas, in reality. three hundred million of the world's population let themselves be beaten, bullied, bruised and coerced into acceptation of a diminutio capitis, as it was called in Old Rome. The over-all picture of “Christian Civilisation” (the things we are invited to save from the Marxist Inferno) is of an agglomeration of nations, great and small, which no longer take the faith they profess seriously, and which resolutely resent the efforts of the Church of Christ to insist upon the creed as true or upon the Decalogue as binding. To do the former is “intolerance” (final word of anathema), to do the latter is impertinence by suggesting that the “Christian ethic” is the only “ethic”, or any longer binding on those who choose to abrogate it for themselves and their fellow traveller's. Fr. Devane had the audacity to think it is time we rose a little in wrath and called the bluuff of this organised lie.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Richard Devane 1876-1951
Fr Richard Devane played a notable part for many years in the sphere of social legislation in Ireland.

Born in Limerick in 1876, he was ordained for the Diocese of Limerick in 1901. Having laboured zealously for 17 years as a secular priest, 14 of them in Limerick city, where he was regarded by his fellow clergy as eminently “episcopabilis”, he entered the Society at Tullabeg in 1918.

As a Jesuit he was identified for years with the Retreat Movement in Rathfarnham Castle, where he displayed special gifts for the direction of youth, and was responsible for many vocations. His social legislation efforts resulted in the Censorship Act, Public Dance Halls and Criminal Amendment Acts. His published works, apart from numerous articles include “Challenge from Youth” and “The Failure of Individualism”.

The following extract from his obit sums up very well and pithily Fr Devane’s character :
“In truth if ever there was born a Weltvertbesserer it was father Richard. Not that he was a gloomy friar or a red-hot hell and brimstone revivalist. He was really a happy warrior, for whom a crusade of some sort was a necessity of life. Perhaps his only error was that he thought legislation could do more for social amelioration than it can”.

He died in his sleep on May 23rd 1951 at Rathfarnham Castle.

Counihan, Tom, 1891-1982, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/461
  • Person
  • 11 October 1891-12 January 1982

Born: 11 October 1891, Kilrush, County Clare
Entered: 07 September 1909, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, Belvedere College SJ, Dublin
Died: 12 January 1982, Richmond Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Milltown Park community at the time of death
Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ
Awarded a BSc 1st Class at UCD 1914, and offered a Postgraduate Scholarship, which he did not accept.
by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 23rd Year No 3 1948
Frs. Counihan and Edward Coyne are acting as members of a Commission set up by the Government Department of Social Welfare, at the end of March, to examine Emigration and other Population Problems. The former is still working on the Commission on Youth Unemployment, while Fr. Coyne, who served on the Commission on Vocational Organisation appointed in 1939, and whose Report was published five years later, is at present Deputy Chairman of the Central Savings Committee, Chairman of the Joint Industrial Council for Beads Industry, Chairman of the Joint Labour Committee for Solicitors, Member of the Joint Labour Committee for the Creamery Industry, Member of the Council of the Statistical Society.

Irish Province News 57th Year No 2 1982
Fr Thomas Counihan (1891-1909-1982)

I well remember Fr Tom Counihan coming to Belvedere in September 1916, when I was a boy in “prep”. We boys thought it strange that he should be so bald, knowing that he was only in his middle twenties. Our first impression of him was that we had a pleasant-looking fellow as our master, one who seemed happily disposed towards us and might not be too strict. Furthermore, on talking to us he gave us the impression of being kindly, and before long we discovered that he had a good sense of humour and could laugh just like any of ourselves.
As we got to know him better, we found that we had a master who would stand no nonsense and would expect us to listen to him and learn from what he had to say. He was strict, firm and determined, all with a view to teaching us and getting the best out of us. Behind all this we found him a most understanding teacher, scrupulously fair and prepared to listen to us. His subjects were mathematics and chemistry and he was a most competent teacher of both subjects.
Two very close and lifelong colleagues of his were in Belvedere to meet him on the first day he arrived: Fr Tom Ryan [d. 1971] and Fr Charlie Molony [d. 1978]. The former was dedicated to Dublin newsboys and particularly to the Belvedere Newsboys' Club, where he was much beloved by the boys. In later years he spent all his time working with the people of Hong Kong. The latter on leaving Belvedere spent most of his time in St Francis Xavier's church, Gardiner street, and during his free time gave much support to the Old Belvedere Rugby Club, of which he was a founder member.
In his second year at Belvedere Fr Tom was assigned to the task of training the JCT. In the previous year, Mr Vincent Conlon, an Australian scholastic (d. 1959), had trained the team with such success that they won the Cup, beating our old rivals Blackrock in the final. Fr Tom had come to Belvedere from Clongowes, where he had played soccer. He knew nothing about the finer points of the game rugby, yet by sheer determination and dedication, he learned rugby skills to great perfection. Twice a week time we trained and on Wednesdays and Saturdays we had games against other schools. By the end of the season our team had greatly improved, especially in the art of passing the ball, and due to Fr Tom's efforts and enthusiasm we went through the Cup series winning all our games, thereby retaining the Cup, having played Castleknock three times in the final. The following year, Fr Tom trained us again with the same eagerness and keenness as in the previous year, and his dedication was so earnest that there was nothing we boys would not do for him. The result was that for the third year in succession we won the Cup, having beaten Blackrock once again in the final. It must be said of Fr Tom that for one who knew so little about rugby when he came to Belvedere, great credit was due to him for being the trainer of two consecutive Cup-winning sides. We schoolboys were conscious of his great devotion to our Lady of Lourdes. He knew by heart the days when she had appeared to St Bernadette, and rolled them off for us. He would expect a postcard from any boys going to Lourdes, and it would be seen later on his mantelpiece. If you went to Lourdes and failed to send a card, he would tell you so when next he saw you. He helped in the formation of the Belvedere Society of our Lady of Lourdes. Fr Tom was chaplain to the Belvedere Newsboys’ Club for many year later and endeared himself to the boys by his love and concern for them, They too regarded him as a friend whose advice they sought and respected. The young newsboys sold the Dublin Evening Mail and the Evening Herald barefoot on the streets of Dublin. The price of a paper then was one old penny, and a boy’s earnings for the evening were about a shilling, provided he had sold four dozen papers. Fr Tom gave many retreats to these newsboys, during which they came to know him really well, making friendships that lasted many years.
We Old Belvederians greatly enjoyed the retreats Fr Tom gave us in Milltown Park. He kept strictly to the Gospels and would talk to us for three-quarters of an hour without a note in front of him. We benefitted greatly from all he told us. To the Christian Brothers also he gave many retreats in their various houses: he was proud of his connection with them. One year he gave a retreat in the Clarendon street Carmelite church, a fairly big church. For five or six days he spoke to the people, having pushed the micro phone to one side.
He had a loud voice and used it to great effect in churches and oratories, the classroom and the playing-fields, I might add that he also used it in his own room, and when people knocked at his door he answered “Come in” with a voice that could be heard at the end of the corridor. Many visitors came to his room daily, some for a chat, some for advice, and some for confession. He would not leave his room in case he might miss one of these friends who needed him.
He had a great admiration for Frank Duff, who was a particular friend of his throughout life. He read Abbot Marmion's books and thought them excellent for spiritual reading. Fr Tom did not smoke, but to the end enjoyed his pinch of snuff, which he said kept him from dozing.
To me who knew him when he came to Belvedere and later visited him in his last days in Milltown Park and Richmond hospital, Fr Tom had changed very little. He came to Belvedere as one who was always happy, with a pleasant smile on his face, jovial and friendly, with a good sense of humour. Later on, he uttered criticism at times but laughed it off as a bit of fun. He would not spare those in high office: yet he had nothing but the highest praise for his own superior, who showed the utmost concern for his needs at all times.
We Belvederians well remember him as a true friend, one with a deep affection for us, whose wisdom and advice we sought and respected, who was deeply spiritual and put all his trust in the Mother of God. He told us: Devotus Mariae nunquam peribit, nunquam.

Here is a viewpoint from the Far East:
As a student in the College of Surgeons, I first met Fr Counihan while on a week-end retreat in Rathfarnham in 1950. I was enthralled by his patriarchal manner, so understandingly human and yet so authoritarian and inspiring. He prided himself on voting Labour, and certainly was the working-man’s guru. Later on in the Society, I always had a warm spot in my heart for him. For three years in Rathfarnham I helped in the refectory by reading at meals for boys and men on retreat. Fr Tom and I got to know each other well.
He prided himself on Abbot Marmion, whom he had known. Everything said by Vatican II is in Marmion, he used to say! Perhaps the Belvedere connection was important here. He always had a predilection for Belvederians! This however did not restrain him from making caustic criticism. His witty tongue spared no one, and his prophetic denunciation covered all - Provincial and Taoiseach, superior and bishop - usually to the delight and enjoyment of listeners. With a whiff of snuff, the word of God was on his tongue. He claimed to be a priest to whom boys - and most ordinary men - listened. He had the wavelength of, and a charism for, people of the 1950s and 1960s. I remember his week-end retreats were based on the Sunday liturgy. The Mass prayers and Scripture texts were written out in his hand and placed on the board. His spirit was indomitable, forthright and courageous - to the edification and admiration of most people. A man of God for men, he told me he never visited anyone, as a visit was a waste of time, He was always available for anyone who called on him: many did call.
Surely he was a disciple of John the Baptist. May he pray for vocation to preach the word of God, to bring consolation to the desolate, forgiveness to the erring and vision to the down hearted.

Irish Province News 57th Year No 3 1982

Fr Thomas Counihan (1891-1909-1982) : Continued
†12th January 1982
Fr Thomas Counihan passed into eternal life in the 91st year of his age, having outlived his eight brothers and five sisters. The President of Ireland, Dr Hillery, and the Archbishop of Dublin,Dr Dermot Ryan, who had been a schoolboy under him at Belvedere, sent letters of condolence. The former spoke of the encouragement he had been given Fr Tom when he was minister for Education, while the latter noted the sustained interest which Fr Tom had taken in the welfare of many of the priests and people of the diocese. Many other hearts were moved to pay tribute, and several of these appear in these pages. The brethren rallied in strength to his requiem; Fr Tom had remarked some years ago, on the death of one of his years.Jesuit peers, that now there were no more colourful characters left in the Province. It was an ingenuous judgment: he himself was one of the great characters among us; an institution, larger than life, he sailed like a liner among tugs, bumping some and swamping others, and it was impossible not to notice him with awe, so certain was his course and so majestic. He was very human, full of contradictions, an extravagant personality, never dull, gleefully imitated.
He was born in Kilrush, Co.Clare, and went to the local Christian Brothers School; there began that interest in and respect for the Brothers which endured throughout his long life. “I saw Christianity in the Brothers in Kilrush. Their ascetic spirituality appealed to him, and in his latter years he used lament the softness and slackness into which he saw the Society slipping, and contrast us unfavourably with the Brothers. For thirty years he was their spiritual director and through direct contact and a large : correspondence had enormous influence among them. He loved them and trusted them, “When I die, the Brothers are to be told first, and a Brother will come and clear out my room: I want no Jesuits to touch it”. Given the state of his room, a small battalion would have been required for this labour of love, but Tom had no doubt but that the Brothers would have responded to the call.
He finished his secondary education in at Tullabeg. He moved on to UCD for three years, taking a science degree - he had obtained first place in Ireland in Chemistry while at Clongowes, winning a gold medal in the process. Because of the outbreak of World War One his further studies in science were interrupted, nor were they ever resumed. He went to Stonyhurst for two years philosophy, and returned in 1916 to teach in Belvedere. Among the pupils of that five-year period was Kevin Barry, whose confidence he won, and who sent for him the night before his execution.
In 1921 he began theology at Milltown Park, and was ordained after two years, a privilege granted to those who had spent many years in regency. After two further years of theology, Fr John Fahy, the Provincial of the day, seeking to remedy some urgent problems at Mungret College, sent Tom there as Minister instead of forwarding him to tertianship. Tom remembered the challenge well: there were three tasks assigned him; the ending of the food strikes by the boys; the cleaning of the house, and the reconciling of the opposing views of the Rector and the Superior of the Apostolic School. His principle for reform, repeated to me 55 years later in reference to Milltown Park was: bona culina, bona disciplina. “When. I got to the front door, I asked for water and a mop. I washed my way to my room! I found an excellent layman to take over the kitchen, and the whole atmosphere changed within a week. Everyone was thrilled: I examined every plate of food and every cup, and the Provincial said at Visitation that I was the best Minister he ever appointed”.
The following year saw Tom in tertianship in Tullabeg. He was remembered as “always jolly and gay, . and a good choirmaster”. In 1927 sent back to Belvedere, where he was Headmaster for six years. Highly respected and successful, he taught Maths and Science, coached successful rugby and cricket teams, and had great control over the boys. He had a lifelong interest in sport, and was good at games. To the end he recalled a Visitors versus Community match about 1930, when, partnered by Fr Matty Bodkin, he scored 97 runs. And during a school retreat in . 1954 at Rathfarnham, to illustrate the importance of determination, he told us how once, when playing Gaelic in Kilrush, he got the ball near the goal, lay down and yelled to his team-mates: |Kick me into the net!” He told me that he was excellent at tennis: “Cyril (Power) and I at were unbeatable: I stayed at the back and Cyril went to the net: I returned all the shots he missed”. Reminiscences of such feats, delicately tinted with passing of the years, consoled him in the time of his infirmity.

In the public eye
In 1933 his talents as preacher and as a 'man's man' were given full scope, when he was appointed to the Mission and Retreat Staff. He was stationed at Emo first (1933-41) and then at Rathfarnham (1941-'43), Although he once described himself as “patched-up second tenor” he knew he had a splendid voice and could pitch it at will: he made of it a most effective apostolic instrument. His clear faith, unclouded as it seems by even a moment's doubt, made his message clear and convincing. He liked especially his work with Fr Garahy: between them they attracted huge crowds. Tom developed hymn-singing and revelled in leading his congregation at Missions and Benedictions, although once, to general dismay, he failed to get the right note, and overheard a remark afterwards that he sounded like a bellowing calf. He claimed he could drown out the Rathfarnham organ; to which challenge Fr H. Croasdaile rose by putting on an 8 foot Diapason.
He was at the height of his energies in this period; he remarked once that he had had indifferent health till his mid-forties, and suffered from a distressing, though harmless heart complaint throughout his life, but now he was travelling the length and breadth of Ireland, moving from parish to parish, always available. “I came home once after giving a Long Retreat, and got a message to start another one that night, and off I went. I gave more and better retreats than anyone else. To give a long retreat you have to make it yourself and give good example. I never took a villa – too many retreats to give ...”
For many years Dr John C. McQuaid, Archbishop of Dublin, was his friend. “The Arch' as Fr Tom called him, engaged him to give spiritual nourishment to the seminarians in Clonliffe and so began a series of long retreats and lasting friendships with men of the diocese. His Grace asked for him to sit on the Government Commission on Youth and Unemployment (1943-50). His work as civil servant was obviously appreciated, for he was next appointed to the Commission on Emigration. The reports of both Commissions are published. Fr Tom had little to say in later years about their impact, “but at least I got all the members coming to confession and reading Marmion!” He was a fine public speaker and often addressed several meetings a week. His addresses were always full of Christian principle and conviction: the Labour men respected him, and Jim Larkin on his death-bed would have no one else but Fr Tom. We who came to know him only in his declining years would not have thought of him as a mediator; yet the daily arrival of a personal copy of the Irish Independent was a constant reminder that he had intervened to avert a newspaper strike. He was Chaplain to the Lord Mayor in the 1950s. He and "The Arch' fell out at a public meeting about the same time, because of a disagreement over policy. Happily good relations were restored at the time of Rathfarnham Retreat House's golden jubilee (1963).
His naive candour about his achievements ("Guess how many confessions I heard tonight!) added to his ex cathedra statements (I'm telling you ...) frustrated and annoyed many: those who disagreed with him found him difficult; patience was needed, but there seem to have been no shortage of patient men around, for the number of those who valued his friendship was legion. They valued his prayers during his lifetime too, and now have even greater trust in ' his power of intercession with God on their behalf. He had the ability to relate ' easily with young and old; doctors, : lawyers, bricklayers, priests – all could come and use him as consultant, moral theologian, as confessor and as friend. He was a great supporter of the Larkins and of James Connolly, and was sensitive to the rights of workers. He knew the social teaching of the Popes, and warned that anyone taking the encyclicals seriously would get into trouble. Men of vision and nonconformists often found in him an ally; institutions and officials which were failing in their duties found in him an outspoken and fearless critic. The lapsed called him 'the hound of heaven'; his zeal for souls sent him out on the streets to search for a relapsed alcoholic. He was sensitive, and visibly saddened if a penitent failed to keep the contract made in confession. He acknowledged that he good at helping the determined, but poor with the indecisive: he was grateful to be able to turn those with vocation crisis over to men like Fr Joe Erraught.

Retreat work
In 1950 he moved from Leeson street to Rathfarnham as Assistant Director of the Retreat House, and was equally effective both with men and boys. His years at Belvedere had taught him all the tricks of the schoolboy mind: in early 1954 we Sixth-years from St Vincent’s came trooping up the avenue towards the Castle, plotting all sorts of mischief. But the “The Coon” as we called him, dominated everything. He was impressive with his bald head and its odd bump at the back covered by a black skull-cap; but more by his voice and his kindly face. We knew he cared about us. He spaced us out, four to a bench, each with his own place, so that there would be no fooling in the chapel; he had a book which all must sign and this entailed going to his room, which ended in a chat and confession. His simple emphasis on the person of Christ was compelling. The tough grew silent, and that autumn, ten of the group went on for the priesthood.
For him the weekend retreats were times as of maximum effort. He was to be found after midnight of the opening night, patrolling Rathfarnham avenue with Br s John Adams, to catch the 'trailers - the nervous and the drunk. “The best wine comes last”, he'd say. He would see a man in the distance, go to him and lead him gently in. He became oblivious of time when dealing with the men in his room: Bishops took their turn in the queue, “I'm no respecter of persons”. Retreats didn't end on Monday morning: he encouraged men to return for direction. Marmion was most recommended; also Fulton Sheen. For spiritual ills, his remedies were crisp: frequent confession, penance and spiritual reading.
His penances were widely known was among the retreatants. “It's good for them to hear me (using the discipline)” he would say. The whole of religion is pain; you have to pay that price for the conversion of others. We are priests and victims. No man has ever refused to see me, because I suffered for them all. I used the discipline and the chain for the conversion of sinners. I got the idea from Michael Browne, my novice-master – he's a saint. A Bishop once asked me: “Is it true you use the scourge?” I said: “Yes. Do you?” I asked about his arthritis which had become so crippling towards end. “That's from the chains I wore.After a while the metal dug into the flesh and then affected the bone. Of course the pain is terrible, but I won't take anything to ease it. I must offer it to God, to make up what is wanting to the sufferings of Christ”. One felt that God must be impressed by his motivation. Not many could follow his ascetical path: “I didn't go to him for confession or counselling said one of the brethren, because I was afraid of his grá for the discipline”.
He came to Milltown in 1957, after some turbulence over the management of Rathfarnham, Again he was appointed Assistant Director of the Retreat House.
It may be noted that except for some work in England, he never travelled abroad: one may speculate on the scope of his life-work had he been assigned to Australia or to Hong Kong after tertianship. Priests' and professional men's retreat work, retained his connections during Fr Tom's time as Assistant Director. He continued to do outside retreat work retained his connections with the Christian Brothers, had time for innumerable visitors and penitents, and followed the fortunes of the English cricket team. His certitude about the rightness of his own convictions gave great security to many friends and penitents: “If you'll just do as I say, you'll be all right!' He loved company and friendship, and even in his declining years had a marvellous memory of persons met long ago. His correspondence was huge: requests for Masses and prayers were unending.
He loved the poor and was very kindly. As rector, I got into the habit of asking him for cash for the needy who came to the front door, and he never failed: sometimes he would give his pocket-money, while on other occasions he would tell a well-to-do penitent that money was needed, and it would be generously given. When he finally went into hospital the poor at the door mourned his departure. A side of him that was suitably hidden from most was his great generosity, thoughtfulness and sympathy for the really poor and those who have no one to champion their cause. He was never embarrassed to use his influence for them: he kept to the end a great interest in them and their families. He interceded with State bodies for the poor, and could be relied on to get jobs for the needy, with his vast network of friends, but more by his gift of persuasion. His remarkable memory for names and faces helped here. A correspondent who lived many years with him gives the following summary:
“One reason for his great apostolic success was that he kept his nose to the grindstone: his was the asceticism of being in his room, always welcoming and available. He took little exercise, and no holidays - nor did he take dessert, nor drink nor smoke cigarettes. All he allowed himself was a little snuff. He never, to my knowledge, read a novel, nor watched a film; he restricted his use of the radio to sport, and refused TV altogether. He went to bed at all hours, as the apostolate demanded, but was up often at 4.15 am. He had great devotion to the Stations of the Cross, which he said in the Chapel until his legs would support him no longer, and in his final years made them in his room, where he had a large set on the wall. He admired Fr Willie Doyle, Matt Talbot, and most of all his novice master, Fr Michael Browne – all of them great ascetics. He lived for the spread of the Gospel, and if he took a day off, he spent it with the Christian Brothers in Bray, hearing in dealing with them. confessions. A simple pleasure which he indulged to the end was the crossword. When stuck, he used ring up one of his friends for help, and the business of the city would be halted while the clue was worked out!”
In regard to Fr Michael Browne, another correspondent adds: “He told me he owed everything to Fr Browne, and that he had tried to build his life on his teaching. He said that whatever way Michael Browne spoke, of us you would be moved by what he said; for example, by the statement: God needs you, or We must be not only priests but victims. I think Fr Michael would have been proud of him: everything he undertook for God, he did well”.

The later years
From about 1970 onward, his arthritis gave increasing trouble, and we watched with awe his declining years, the slowly diminishing sphere of his activity. First a room on the first floor, so that getting to the door would not be too awkward. Then a handrail so that he could manage the stairs. Then a room on the Chapel Corridor when stairs became impossible. Slow walks up and down the drive with faithful and patient companion, Fr Brendan Lawler. Then confined to the room, a den of wild chaos: plants, dust, tattered booklets, snuff. We spent weeks wondering would he refuse the wheelchair. Then one day: “There are our stages in getting old, you know. First it's the room, then the chair, then even the bed, and then the box”. He wondered once if Fr Willie Doyle, whose photo he had in his room, would have coped well with the pains of old age, a harder asceticism than the freely-chosen austerities of youth. Lively and athletic as he had been, he never complained about the ever-increasing restrictions the Lord placed on him. He was blessed in his infirmarian, Br Joe Cleary, even if he seldom acknowledged it openly. Joe built him a padded chair, and it became his throne: there he sat and slept and prayed, and held court and heard confessions, read the Tablet and said innumerable rosaries - the 15 mysteries daily.
He loved Our Lady, and read a five-volume Life of her, written by the Ven. Mary Agreda, and used quote at length passages detailing “facts” known neither to scripture nor tradition. He kept all Mary's feastdays with great solemnity, and was deeply devoted to Our Lady of Lourdes and Bernadette. Little wonder that Frank Duff was a long-standing friend, and that Legion of Mary affairs were important to him. I like to think of of him being wheeled down the Milltown Corridor by Br Joe Cleary or Bill Reddy – the latter used to stand in for the infirmarian, and put up patiently with lots of abuse when Tom was in poor mood, and that Bill did so is a measure of the devotion and respect Tom inspired in so many. Anyway, down the corridor he'd come and swing into the refectory: anyone daring to obstruct his progress t got poked with a stick. Tom dominated the refectory from his chosen table, singing a hymn at the top of his voice, and delighted if he created attention or gathered a chorus. “They're all too dull in his here: look at them all with their solemn faces. They need to smile”. It was hard, even on a wet morning, not to smile at him, with his black knitted hat firmly on the back of his head, and his gown and coat covered in snuff. Perhaps he recognised that he was not a community man, and that in fact distances and chasms yawned between him and some of the brethren, and in his own inimitable way was trying to make up, by allowing himself to become a figure of fun. It was a source of lifelong hurt to him never to have been invited to give a retreat to Jesuits; he felt a lack of trust in the “management”. He ignored the fact that many other good men had also failed to receive such an invitation.
He was a convinced anti-feminist, though he gave many retreats to sisters in his heyday. He had an Aloysius-like respect for the Ne tangas, rejected female nurses, and would have no women in for confession: he was there for the men, and others could look after the weaker sex. Sisters crowding around the Milltown Institute notice-boards learned to scatter at his approach. In the chapel, if one happened to be obscuring his line of vision of the tabernacle, a stage whisper would float through the air and the guilty soul, breathless with adoration though she might be, had to slink further along her bench. He opposed the introduction women visitors into the refectory: in this he was not unique. But when the battle was long lost, he still continued a guerrilla warfare by protesting against any women who happened to be facing him: they should all face up the Refectory and away from him. In his last year, however, spent in the Richmond, had to submit to the ministrations of the female staff, and by and large bore it well. He used to boast at Milltown that he took a bath twice a year, whether he needed it or not: when the nurses took charge of him, they apparently decided that this boast had been true, and proceeded to give him an ether bath, “They removed four or five pounds from me. They're very wicked nurses; now I'll be a prey to all sorts of diseases which the dirt saved me from”. The nurses grew very fond of him and tended him with love: it is not clear just how much that love was reciprocated!
The obverse of that simple certitude which was a blessing to so many was a quality of intolerance with those who disagreed with him. He was an easy man to work with only while one was on his side. The tale is told of a retreat for priests at Milltown. Tom had not been assigned to give it, but he thought little of the man who had, So at the end of each talk he would lurk about at the door of the chapel and waylay one of the group and ask: “Well, what did he say this time?” One being told, he would snort: “Rubbish”, and proceed to give his, the correct, version. These remedial instructions were so comprehensive that one retreatant was left with the scruple that perhaps he should pay for two retreats instead of one, while another felt that he was excused from the obligation of the following year's retreat.
He had a clear eye for the faults of the brethren, and could articulate them in devastating fashion. As Headmaster he acknowledged that he would have got rid of a number of scholastics then teaching in Belvedere, while fifty years later he offered unsolicited advice of the same nature to me at the breakfast-table. In his early years with the Christian Brothers. he was idolised by many because he seemed so far ahead in his outlook: it was sad that growth stopped at some point such that the forward movement of the Society and of the Province since 1965 left him angry and embittered. He could see nothing but compromise and weakness in many developments, and felt that the original spirit of the Society had been betrayed. Perhaps not surprisingly, he seemed untroubled by any regrets for his sometimes scathing criticisms. Superiors bore the brunt of his wrath, and so I entered on the job of Rector of Milltown in 1974 with trepidation, but a reliance on the fact that he had a soft spot for me, having sent me to the novitiate. Thus began a breakfast-table friendship, something forbidden all others. Through good moods or ill we chatted about the issues of the day; as the years passed and his deafness (selective, some thought) increased, I was cast as passive listener: while he played the part of self-appointed admonitor of all who needed correction, from Father General down to the kitchen staff. The remarkable thing was that if one stood up to him and contradicted him, there would be a brief storm, after which he would ease up and laugh. It was said of him that he lived by indignation. Certainly he loved the ring of battle: Quem timebo? he would say. But while he took joy into the smash that put his opponent away, he could acknowledge a good return and passing shot too. I look back on my years with him as a great privilege: sometimes I wonder if his crusty exterior was a façade for an inner gentleness. When he left Milltown for the last time, en route first to Our Lady's Hospice and then, at his nephew's insistence, to the Richmond (where Harry, his nephew, was Consultant), I went to tidy his room, and found there the letter I had sent him in 1954, three days after my entering Emo. Why should that have meant so much to him? Another gentle touch came at the end of a visit to him in hospital, when he said: “I. hope I wasn't boring?” On another occasion I was sitting on his bed, chatting, and moved position after a while. There was silence for a bit, then he said: “Now you're sitting on my other leg”. When I took leave of him in September 1981, and said I'd see him in six months, he was silent, but I'd almost swear his eyes glistened.
Thus, like most of us, he was a man of contradictions. 'Quem timebo?' yet he could not bear to sleep alone in the house at night. A totally spiritual man, yet he feared death and could be thrown into panic by a heart condition which though distressing, he knew to be harmless. Likewise, he had his gentle side and his rough edges. The trick was to learn to roll with the punches. 'Whatever job they give you next, he said to the Province Delegate for Formation, 'I hope it won't be in formation: you're useless at it! Fourth-year Fathers had to learn not to take too seriously the admonition; "You're not fit for hearing Confessions, Leave that work to me: it's me they want."

The end
He cherished for long a desire to be buried with the Christian Brothers: opinions differed on the real reason: Was it his lifelong friendship with them, or the fact that Brothers are buried in individual graves, whereas Jesuits have a single mass grave? The latter would appear to be the true reason; he let slip one day that he was concerned that in 50 years' time 'people won't be able to find me in Glasnevin!' The presumption was that there'd be those around who would wish to know: some of his brethren would consider this an irritating conceit. But he operated with a different frame work from that currently in vogue: Fr Michael Browne had taught him the importance of sanctity: it was a goal to be achieved, not simply admired in the saints of old. The means were clear: constancy in prayer, asceticism, zeal for the Kingdom of God, and total faith in God's grace. Tom saw miracles of grace worked in his friends and penitents; it did not seem too strange to him to think that God would do likewise in himself, and that he might be chosen by God as a channel of grace for others after his death, just as he had been during his lifetime.
In 1979 Fr Tom celebrated his 70th year in the Society, and the occasion was marked by a lunch in his honour, at the close of which he made a speech. "Love and joy' he said, “have been the chief characteristics of my life.' His hearers were a trifle incredulous then, but not so now. He has entered into the company of Love and Joy, and laughter and the love of friends innumerable are his again. And I have little doubt but that as he looks down on our topsy-turvy world he indulges in the occasional comment, meant for Them, as to what remedial steps should be taken.

Fitzgibbon, Michael, 1889-1973, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/709
  • Person
  • 29 September 1889-22 January 1973

Born: 29 September 1889, County Limerick
Entered: 07 September 1906, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 18 December 1921, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, St Aloysius College, Milson’s Point, Sydney, Australia
Died: 22 January 1973, Kostka Hall, Melbourne, Australia - Australia Province (ASL)

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05/04/1931

by 1911 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1913

Younger brother of Fr John FitzGibbon SJ ?

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
His early education was at the Presentation Sisters, Sexton Street, Limerick and with the Jesuits at Crescent College, before he Entered at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg.

1908-1910 He remained in Tullabeg for a Juniorate in Latin, Greek and English, gaining a BA from University College Dublin
1910-1913 He was scent to Leuven Belgium for Philosophy
1913-1919 He was sent to Australia for Regency, first to Xavier College Kew, and then St Patrick’s College Melbourne, where he taught Junior classes and French to the Senior classes.
1919-1922 He returned to Ireland and Milltown Park Dublin for Theology
1922-1925 He was sent teaching first to Clongowes and then Coláiste Iognáid
1925-1926 He was sent to Hastings to complete his Theology
1926-1927 He made Tertianship at Tullabeg.
1928-1934 He came back to Australia and St Aloysius College Sydney
1934-1936 He was sent to the Richmond Parish
1936-1953 He was back teaching at St Patrick’s College
1953-1973 He was sent to Kostka Hall at Xavier College, where he taught Religion, French and History until 1964

As well as teaching, he worked weekend supplies, heard confessions and gave retreats and tridua. He was Spiritual Father to the Boys and directed the Crusaders and Apostleship of Prayer Sodalities. He always appreciated the many contacts with priests, former students and friends.

He was an enthusiastic man and very Irish in his leanings. He was pious but also communicated contemporary devotion to the boys.

He spent the last few years of his life in nursing homes, and he found the inactivity tough. He eventually came to some peace about this, as he came to accept the death of friends, being out of Jesuit community, and he died a happy and contented man.

Glynn, Mortimer, 1891-1966, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/167
  • Person
  • 30 December 1891-11 August 1966

Born: 30 December 1891, Limerick City
Entered: 24 March 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1924, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, Belvedere College SJ, Dublin
Died: 11 August 1966, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Catholic Workers College, Ranelagh, Dublin community at the time of death

by 1917 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying

1926-1927 Tertianship at Tullabeg

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 41st Year No 4 1966
Obituary :

Fr Mortimer Glynn SJ (1883-1966)

Fr. Mortimer Glynn was educated at the Jesuit College, The Crescent, Limerick, Before entering the Jesuit Novitiate at Tullabeg in 1914, he had been a clerk in a Dublin insurance company. He was older at twenty-three than the average novice, yet he was a good “mixer”, congenial and blessed with a rich sense of humour. To his fellow-novices he seemed of frail health but on the football field or in the handball alley or leading a “company” on villa-day walks, he displayed amazing energy. His noviceship completed, he spent a short time at Rathfarnham Castle. He was in his twenty fifth year when he was sent directly to philosophy on Jersey Island, where the Paris Province had a house of studies. The First World War interrupted his third year and all the members of the Irish Province were recalled from the continent to the newly-established philosophate at Milltown Park. His three years “colleges” were spent at Mungret (1920-1923). Along with his duties as teacher in the classroom, he had charge of the boys' choir. As choir master, he was in his element, he possessed a good tenor voice and the gift of conveying to the boys the beauty of good singing. His theology was studied at Milltown Park and at the end of two years (profiting by a war privilege) he was ordained priest on the feast of St. Ignatius, 31st July 1925. His tertianship was spent at Tullabeg (1927). His next assignment was to Belvedere College. He was to spend twelve years at Belvedere and these years were probably the most remarkable in his life. He held a variety of offices and all with distinction. He was master in the junior house, choir master to the senior and junior houses, Minister for four years, Editor of The Belvederian and Spiritual Father to the community (1939). But it is as pioneer and producer of a very successful series of Gilbert and Sullivan operas that his name will be for ever linked with the history of music and theatricals in Belvedere College. Members of the community of this time will recall his uphill struggle to carry out his conviction that he could teach the boys a love of acting and an appreciation of the music of Gilbert and Sullivan. It certainly seemed unlikely that one so shy and retiring as Fr. Glynn, could succeed in ultimately making the college “opera-week” the talk of the town. Yet, that is what he achieved. Opera week became a social attraction; dignitaries of Church and State gladly accepted invitations; other schools in the city, envious of these triumphs sought to introduce the operas into their own schools. During opera week at Belvedere a peculiar atmosphere of joyful expectancy hung about the college and the Rector (Fr. P. Morris) often said, “if I wanted to reward a benefactor of the house, I would send him an invitation to opera week!” This was reported to Fr. Mortie, and he was intensely amused by the compliment. More than one professional producer came to learn from Fr. Glynn's arrangements of the stage with its enormous cast (for every mother wished her boy to be included in the conquests of this week). Another producer doubted that the cast was composed only of boys on the college roll, he asserted that past Belvederians supplemented the cast. Only when he was introduced to the cast enjoying a high tea in one of the parlours did he admit his error of judgment. Were we to try to analyse the source of Fr. Glynn's unquestionable success, we might mention a number of factors. He was an artist himself; could portray before the startled boys the various quips and gestures that suited a stage character; he could dance the required steps; he could sing any aria in the score; he could invent graceful movements which gave life and colour to the chorus; and he was so gentle and persuasive that the boys took courage and imitated what they had seen so wonderfully portrayed. Past Belvederians soon founded a Musical and Dramatic Society of their own and attributed their popularity and achievements to what they had learned from Fr. Glynn.
In 1940 Fr. Glynn's health showed signs of deterioration. A change of work, specially church work, appealed to him. He came to St. Francis Xavier's Church, Gardiner Street, and soon established himself as a kind confessor. He had charge of the youths' sodality and endeared himself to the boys and the leaders. He was settling down to this congenial work when he was appointed to a still more important work, Spiritual Father to the community of Rathfarnham Castle. Here he was to spend seven years (1941-48). He proved to be a wise counsellor and those young in heart found in him a sympathetic listener. He had experienced life in the world prior to entering the Society, and he often said that we all need imperatively is encouragement in serving our Good Master. He would be the last man to reveal his personal devotions or acts of piety. Yet, he couldn't hide from others his particular love of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. His furtive and frequent visits to the chapel were known to all who lived with him. In 1949 he returned to his alma mater, the Crescent, Limerick, where he was given the church work he loved. He had the direction of the Arch-Confraternity of the Bona Mors; and often preached on the blessings of dying in God's friendship. His former interests: in the stage and musical comedy were revived by contact with the Cecilian Musical Society, formed by past boys of the Crescent College. He became again the producer and met with the same phenomenal success. On one occasion over sixty of the past Belvederians travelled from Dublin to attend one of his productions. Little did they realise how sick a man he really was. First it was rheumatic fever; later he spent several months in hospital and was considered in danger of death. Tuberculosis was diagnosed and he was ordered to a sanatorium. He came to St. Mary's Chest Hospital, Phoenix Park, Dublin, in the summer of 1951 and for the next fifteen years he was an invalid. He refused to surrender. In St. Mary's Hospital he was fortunate to find as Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Kevin McArdle, who for many years was to do so much to lessen the hardship of his life by devoted personal friendship and consummate professional skill. Fr. Glynn showed incredible courage and determination. Doctors, nurses and visiting patients of the hospital were amazed at his hidden vitality. Sometimes Fr. Glynn improved so much that he was able to walk about the hospital and grounds. One might have thought he was permanently cured. In 1953 he was sent to Manresa Retreat House, where a former sports' pavilion was turned into a bungalow, admirably suited to his needs. Friends he had made in hospital and whose confidence he had won used come to see him. Occasionally, he was able to hear confessions in the retreat house. One official, attached to a golf club, said of him: “he was the gentlest priest I ever came across”. After eight years at Manresa, during which there were frequent visits to St. Mary's Hospital, a change of house was recommended by his doctor. He was appointed to the Catholic Workers' College. This house was to be his happy home for the last four years of his life. He endeared himself to everybody. For some months he was “up and doing”, then came spells of real sickness and exhaustion. He was so weak at times in these last years that people visiting him would not have been surprised to see him die. There were moments of complete helplessness when his breathing was extremely difficult and he was a pathetic sight to see. But no complaint was heard on his lips. The end came on Thursday, 11th August, in St. Vincent's Private Hospital. He had been suffering acute abdominal pains. An operation was thought advisable and Fr. Glynn was anxious that it should be tried. He rallied for some time after the operation but soon began to lose whatever strength he had gathered the previous days. He was well prepared to meet his Good Master (only Fr. Glynn could tell how often in his 75 years he had been fortified with the sacraments for the sick). It was his apostolate for nearly sixteen years to preach from a sick bed or from inside his room those strong Christian qualities : patience, courage in bearing pain, resignation to the will of his Creator, gentleness above all things. The last quality will always be associated with him by those who knew him well whether in the Society or outside it, the doctors, nurses, fellow-patients, penitents and the domestics of the hospitals and houses of Ours. “Well done! thou good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of thy Lord!” could well have been Our Lord's greeting to the soul of Fr. Mortimer Glynn.

Murray, Patrick, 1877-1942, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/269
  • Person
  • 03 June 1877-01 February 1942

Born: 03 June 1877, Elphin, County Roscommon
Entered: 03 June 1917, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 01 February 1942, Clongowes Wood College, Naas, County Kildare

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Merchant before entry

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 17th Year No 2 1942

Obituary :

Brother Patrick Murray

Brother Murray died at Clongowes on February 1st. He had only left the College infirmary three days previously in the best of form after a fortnight's rest treatment, and was to resume work on the following Tuesday. Passing the chapel on the way to lunch at 12 o’clock, he entered to pay a visit to the Blessed Sacrament. There while saying his prayers, he got a sudden heart attack. Fr. Rector administered Extreme Unction, and within five minutes, Brother Murray had passed peacefully away.
Though his sudden death caused such a shock to the Community the boys, and great numbers of people around the College, with whom he was a very popular figure, it was eminently the kind of death that he himself would have desired. For many years, he had been intirnately associated with the chapels at Clongowes as sacristan. fact, it was almost impossible to go to any of the chapels without meeting Brother Murray there, and seeing him- and indeed hearing him - praying. His fervent ejaculations - often aloud when he thought no one was present - were an almost continual feature of his life. Whether he was working in the magazine where the boys keep their clothes, or in the sacristy, or driving the car, prayer was very seldom absent from his lips. He was indeed a men of prayer, and it was a fitting end that he should have died while praying before Our Lord in the Tabernacle.
Brother Murray in early life adopted the drapery business as his vocation. Having spent some years in Messrs. Pim & Co., Dublin he carried on a successful business of bis own in Delvin, Co. Westmeath. After seven years of happy married life, his wife died. From that moment, he made up his mind to dispose of his business, and devote his life to the service of God. This resolution he put into effect a few years later when he entered Tullabeg on June 3rd, 1917 on his 40th birthday. He presented one of his motor cars to Tullabeg and a second - the Krit - to Clongowes. After five years, spent in Tullabeg and. Milltown, Brother Murray came to Clongowes where he remained for the last 17 years.
Three qualities endeared Brother Murray to all who knew him. His genial good humour, his readiness to do anything for everyone and his transparent piety. We shall miss him very much in Clongowes. His familiar figure, in the People's Church serving Mass after Mass, as he loved to do when occasion arose, doing a hundred and one jobs for the boys, rushing out to the laundry, or the garage, driving the car in his own inimitable and somewhat nerve-racking way, his hearty and utterly spontaneous laugh, his anxiety to give clothes and
boots to the poor, even his reading in the refectory - all seemed part and parcel of Clongowes life. But he has gone to the Master, Whom before all and above all, he loved and served, R.I.P.
On Tuesday, February 3rd, after Requiem Mass in the Boys chapel, in the presence of his three brothers, the Community, boys, and many people from the neighbourhood, the funeral procession led by the Community, followed by the whole school, and the public took place to the College Cemetery. The choir sang the Benedictus and Fr. Provincial said the last prayers. Very Rev. Frs. Fergal McGrath and P. Kenny were also present.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Brother Patrick Murray SJ 1877-1942
As he passed the chapel in Clongowes on his way to lunch on February 1st 1942, Br Patrick Murray dropped in for a short visit to Our Lord, and there in the presence of the Master he had loved and served so well, he died.

It was a fitting and beautiful end to a holy and cheerful life. Having been a successful draper in Delvin County Westmeath, Patrick Murray, on the death of his wife, sold all his goods and gave the proceeds to the poor. His two cars he gave to the Society, one to Tullabeg, and the other, known as the “Krit”, to Clongowes. He was truly liked by all, the boys, the people, the Community. He was ever easy to do all kinds of odd jobs, to drive the car, or best of all to him, serve at Mass. Many Jesuits will remember him for his reading in the refectory, a task he loved and in which he was inimitable.

Truly happy both naturally and supernaturally in his life, he is to be envied in the manner of his death.

MacDonald, Daniel, 1891-1957, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/284
  • Person
  • 19 June 1891-14 May 1957

Born: 19 June 1891, Carrickmore, County Tyrone
Entered: 07 September 1909, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1924, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, Shiuhing, China
Died: 14 May 1957, Mungret College, County Limerick

Studied for BSc at UCD;

by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1917 in Australia - Regency at St Aloysius College, Sydney
1926-1927 Tertianship at Tullabeg
by 1928 second batch Hong Kong Missioners

◆ Hong Kong Catholic Archives :
Requiem Mass at Ricci Hall Chapel
Father Daniel McDonald, S.J.

At the Chapel of Ricci Hall, Catholic Hostel at the University of Hong Kong, a solemn Requiem Mass was offered last Thursday by Father Herbert Dargan, S.J. the present Warden of Ricci Hall, for the repose of the soul of one of his predecessors, Father Daniel McDonald, S.J., whose death occurred in Ireland on 14 May 1957. He was 66 years of age.

Fr. McDonald, a native of Tyrone in Northern Ireland, was educated in Armagh, and was a student of the diocesan seminary in that city before he entered the Society of Jesus. He did his university studies in the National University, Dublin, where he took his degree in science. He spent some years in Australia before his ordination, and was one of the second group of Irish Jesuits who came to Hong Kong, in 1927.

After a period of Chinese studies in Shiu Hing, Kwangtung, he was attached to the Sacred Heart College, Canton, but on the opening of Ricci Hall as a Catholic Hostel of the Hong Kong University he was appointed its first Warden. He held this position from 1929 to 1936.

During the war in China, when the Japanese occupied Canton, a relief party was sent form Hong Kong and Fr. McDonald was put in charge of one of the welfare sections. He remained in Canton under difficult conditions as long as it was possible to continue the work.

After his return to Hong Kong it was clear that the strain had seriously affected his health, and he was sent to Ireland to recuperate. In spite of his hope of one day returning to Hong Kong this was never possible, though his interest in China and in Chinese studies continued to the end. His last appointment was Director of the Apostolic School in Mungret College, Limerick. The news of his death came as a complete surprise, as he was known to be in his usual health up to a few weeks ago.
Sunday Examiner Hong Konh - 24 May 1957

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Daniel MacDonald entered the Society at Tullabeg, 7 September 1909, a time when there were sixteen novices and 23 juniors. The place was drab and the life was stern. There was a Trappist touch everywhere. Father Michael Browne was the ascetical novice master. MacDonald was small, well proportioned, with a dark, swarthy, Spanish complexion, slightly aquiline nose, and a smile always around the corner of his mouth. He had a likeness to Ignatius Loyola. He enjoyed the noviciate, it gave him idealism, perfection and the means to attain them,
MacDonald began his juniorate studies, showing much dedication and hard work, at the National University 1911-14, gaining a BSc in mathematics and experimental physics. Philosophy studies were at Stonyhurst, 1914-16, and then he was a most popular teacher of science and mathematics, sports master, director of cadets and prefect of discipline, at St Aloysius' College, Milsons Point, 1916-22. He was considered an outstanding teacher of mathematics and also taught science part time at Riverview. MacDonald entered into school life with tremendous zest. He was well spoken about in the Aloysian, and he loved Australia.
He returned to Milltown Park, Dublin, for theology, 1922-26, and to Tullabeg for tertianship the following year. Then he began a twelve year ministry on the China Mission, which had just begun. They were hard times. He began language study during the first six months of 1928 at the Portuguese Mission of Shiuhing. Later he helped set up a language school at Taal Lam Chung and was its first superior. He showed special aptitude for the Chinese language. In response to an appeal from the harassed bishop of Canton, the Irish Jesuits undertook the temporary management of the Sacred Heart School in that city in September 1928, and MacDonald and Dan Finn were the first to bear the hardships of that ministry.
When the Irish withdrew from Canton at the end of 1929, MacDonald became the first superior of Ricci Hall in Hong Kong, a residence for university students. The following year he was acting superior of the mission. He remained at this work until July 1936. During these years he continued to study Chinese, unfortunately with a more than prudent zeal and intensity. He worked from early morning to late at night, deaf to all the remonstrances of those who saw clearly that such concentration must undermine his health. He became quite outstanding at the spoken and written Chinese. But his health so suffered in the process that he was sent back to Ireland to recuperate.
Back in Hong Kong early in 1937, he spent some months on the staff of the Regional Seminary, Aberdeen, while the new language school was being built at Tool Lam Chung in the
New Territories. When the language school opened in July 1937, MacDonald became its first superior. lt was another challenge to get suitable teachers, draw up programmes of study and provide for the new missionaries arriving fresh from Ireland.
In November 1938 Japan invaded South China and captured Canton. MacDonald went with other Jesuits to help the suffering people of the city. His knowledge of Chinese was of immense value to the joint Protestant and Catholic committee, which was sent from Hong Kong.
Unfortunately, the strain of this work once more undermined his health. Finally, in July 1939, he had to withdraw from the Hong Kong Mission and returned to Ireland, still working on a Chinese dictionary, which eventually had to be abandoned.
MacDonald developed a great love of the Chinese language and for the Chinese people. They understood that “Mok San Foo” understood them, and many came to consult him over the years. He was truly inculturated into the Chinese culture.
Upon his return to Ireland he was stationed at Emo from 1940-45, and in the latter year was transferred to Mungret College, Limerick, where he remained for the rest of his life. He had good control of a class, would punish irregularities but never with undue severity. He showed great diligence in preparation of classes, leaving volumes of notes on all his subjects. As at St Aloysius' College during regency, he entered into the life of the students, showing interest in all that concerned them, particularly sports.
After ten years on the teaching staff during which he was spiritual father to the Apostolics, he was appointed superior of the Apostolic School. It seemed an office eminently suited to his gifts of nature and grace and an outlet for his zeal for the missions He was a good community man with a quiet sense of humor and an appealing smile. All enjoyed his company He seemed to be always occupied, yet found time for everyone He worked to the end of his life. No one had any suspicion that he was not well - he kept his troubles to himself. For at least twelve months he had been unwell. but the end came quickly, after two days of considerable pain and suffering resulting from a heart attack.
MacDonald was an idealist who sought perfection. He had an amazing capacity for hard work, was kindly, and had unfailing good humor. This gave him a great capacity for making friends and keeping them.

Irish Province News 32nd Year No 3 1957

St. Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street, Dublin
The recent death of Fr. Daniel MacDonald, at Mungret, was a big loss to Gardiner Street as well as to his own Community. For the past six years he had spent most of the summer doing Church work with us when one or other of the Community was away on retreat or Villa. His wide experience and quiet gentle manner made him very well-fitted for the many calls the “Domi” man can receive, while his zeal and patience meant that he was at the disposal of Father. Minister for any assignment at the shortest notice. May he rest in peace!

Obituary :

Fr Daniel MacDonald (1891-1957)

On Thursday, 9th May Fr. MacDonald had this concluding paragraph in a letter :
“With regard to vacation I think I should not plan anything yet, until I see how things will work out. I am very tired just now, but please God that will pass as this term is not heavy. So we shall see later, perhaps”.
This letter was answered on Saturday, 11th May, and due in Mungret on Monday, 13th May. On that Monday Fr. Dan had a severe heart attack and died next day, Tuesday, 14th May, just one month short of his 66th birthday. That was how things worked out, and there was almost a prescience of it in Fr. Dan's words - “I think I should not plan anything yet”. He felt very tired, and his friends and relatives saw the fatigue when he was in Dublin for the Provincial Congregation at Easter. Moreover, he just casually referred to pains in his chest, and waived aside any idea of their serious nature or of seeing a doctor.
The remains of Fr. Dan were laid to rest in the new cemetery at Mungret, where he had spent the last twelve years of his life. The respect in which he and his family were held was obvious from the number of very representative clergy of the archdiocese of Armagh who made the long journey to Mungret. For many years unto a ripe old age, Fr. Dan's eldest brother was P.P. of Dungannon and Dean and V.G. of the archdiocese. Another brother died as a C.C. many years ago. A nephew is Adm in Dundalk. One of his sisters, Mother Brigid, practically founded the Mercy Convent in Perth, Western Australia. There are two nieces-one Mother Provincial in the Loretto nuns. So Fr. Dan was one of a family that gave much to the Church and to its missions.
Dan MacDonald and the writer of these lines were among the nine who entered the novitiate in Tullabeg in the autumn of 1909. There were sixteen Novices and twenty-three Juniors. The place was drab, the life was stern. There was a Trappist touch everywhere. Fr. Michael Browne was the Baptist proclaiming the way of the Lord, a saintly ascetic figure. Not far behind him on the narrow path that leads to life was the Socius, Fr. Charles Doyle. The latter was more down to earth, and kept the novices hardy with long and tiring manual works. There is no doubt about it, but that Dan MacDonald, right from the start, was just as solid as a rock, as good as gold and as genuine a colleague as could be found. Small, well proportioned, dark swarthy Spanish complexion, slightly aquiline nose, a smile always round the corner of his mouth, Dan was a miniature Ignatius. Let there be no mistake about it, the sterling qualities he showed all through life were there from the beginning. Whatever he was given to do he put everything into it. The noviceship suited Dan, and Dan suited the Jesuit noviceship. There were no frills and side-shows in that novitiate. It gave this solid lad of the North what he wanted-idealism, perfection, and the means to attain them.
Proceeding from Tullabeg in the autumn of 1911, Dan began his University course at Milltown Park, and concluded it in Rathfarnham Castle in 1914, with the B.Sc. degree. Now this course in Mathematical and Experimental Physics made great demands on him. Coming as he did from a classical seminary and with First Arts in his pocket, he set about his new subjects with zest, At that time our courses were arranged by the late Rev. Dr. Timothy Corcoran. He set many of us along the scientific path because the Colleges and the needs of the modern world were calling out for Science. These courses were tough and meant long hours in the University laboratories. It was a great achievement for Dan and we all admired his tremendous capacity for study. The same spirit of hard concentrated work saw him through his abridged course of philosophy in Stonyhurst. World War I broke out in 1914 and several who were destined for philosophy on the continent were disappointed. The loss of a modern language like French or German is of no small consequence to a student of the calibre of Dan MacDonald.
On his return to Ireland in 1916 Dan set out for Australia and spent six years as a most successful teacher of science and mathematics in St. Aloysius School, Sydney. He entered into school life in Australia with tremendous zest. He mastered the games that were all new to him and won the affection of the boys. As in England so in Australia Dan kept his patriotism in its proper place. Ireland was aflame those years (1916-1922), but happenings at home either in his family or in his native land, were never allowed to interfere with his work for souls anywhere. He loved Australia because it was the mission field of the Irish Province. When in the normal course of events he would have returned for theology after five years teaching, he readily volunteered to remain. In that last year after his day's teaching in St. Aloysius he used to go up river to give Science classes at Riverview College. Having come home ir 1922 he was thoroughly equipped for his return to the mission as a priest in 1927.
Theology and tertianship concluded, Fr. Dan did not return to Australia, but set out for the newly founded mission in Hong Kong. There he laboured for twelve years with one very brief period at home due to health. This heroic pioneering work is best described by the Jesuit colleague who witnessed it.

China (1927-37)
“As I look back over Fr. MacDonald's twelve years in the Hong Kong Mission the outstanding impression is that he had an exceptionally large portion of the hardships of the mission's beginnings. He, with Fr. Gallagher, was to make our first experiments in formal language study during the first six months of 1928 at the Portuguese mission of Shiuhing. The experience then gained was later valuable when we set up our language school at Taai Lam Chung and Fr. MacDonald became its first Superior.
Though from the start he showed a quite exceptional aptitude for the Chinese language, he could not be allowed more than six months of formal study. By September; 1928, in response to the appeal of the harassed Bishop of Canton, the Irish Jesuits undertook the temporary management of the Sacred Heart School in that city. Fr. MacDonald and Fr. Finn were the first to bear the physical hardships, frustrations, and almost daily humiliations involved in that venture. (It was certainly the most trying work that Ours have undertaken in the thirty years of the Hong Kong Mission, and it was largely due to the extraordinary devotedness of these two Fathers that the Hong Kong Mission continued to administer the school for four years, in the teeth of every difficulty, relinquishing it only after the tragic deaths of Frs. Saul and McCullough which took place a few weeks before the date set for our withdrawal from the work.)
Fr. MacDonald had scarcely completed one year of the beginnings in Canton when he was called to face the beginnings of Ricci Hall, He became its first Superior when it was opened to students on 16th December, 1929 and for the next year he also acted as Mission Superior during Fr. George Byrne's absence in Ireland. It was another difficult beginning because he had to create the traditions of discipline among University students who up to then had known no hostels where rules and discipline were taken very seriously. He won the battle by winning the students' affection and Ricci Hall came quickly to be known as the outstanding hostel of the University.
Fr. MacDonald continued as Superior (or Warden') of Ricci Hall until July, 1936. During all these years he continued to study Chinese with, unfortunately, a more than prudent zeal and intensity. He was at it from early morning to late at night, deaf to al the remonstrances of those who saw clearly that such concentration must undermine his health. He became a quite outstanding adept at spoken and written Chinese. But his health so suffered in the process that in 1936, Fr. Kelly had to replace him as Superior of Ricci and he himself was sent back to Ireland to recuperate.
Back in Hong Kong carly in 1937, he spent some months on the staff of the Regional Seminary, Aberdeen, while the new Language School was being built at Taai Lam Chung in the New Territories. When the Language School opened in July, 1937, Fr. MacDonald became its first Superior. It was another beginning and he had to face all the problems of getting suitable teachers, drawing up programmes of study and horaria for our young missionaries coming fresh from Ireland to begin what from that on became the necessary two years' language study preliminary to missionary work. He also took several classes each day so as to help our young missionaries to profit by the work they had to do under the far-from-expert Chinese teachers.
In November, 1938 the Japanese invaded South China and captured Canton. The sufferings and misery in the city were very great and Fr. MacDonald with Fr. G. Kennedy spent several months in Canton on work for the relief of the suffering. His knowledge of Chinese was of immense value to the joint Protestant and Catholic committee which was sent from Hong Kong for that work.
Unfortunately, it was only too clear that the strain of all this work, together with the unceasing concentration all day long on language study at this time he had several secretaries working with him in the composition of a Chinese dictionary - had once more undermined his health. Finally, in July, 1939 he had to withdraw from the Hong Kong Mission and though at home, he continued to work on his Chinese dictionary, that work also had finally to be abandoned.
With his love of the Chinese language, Fr. MacDonald imbibed also a very great love for the Chinese people, and something of their innate courtesy and even modes of thought. They felt that ‘Mok San Foo’ understood them and even those who spoke not a word of English, and who looked on Europeans generally as unpredictable people, were to be seen coming to Ricci or Taai Chung to consult him in their troubles. As you saw him bow, Chinese-fashion, with beautiful courtesy to even the poorest who came to him, and as you listened to him address them in their own language, even with their own peculiar (shall I call them) mannerisms, you felt that here was one who really had made China, its language, its thoughts, its people, his very own”.

Fr. MacDonald on his return to Ireland was stationed at Emo from 1940 to 1945 and in the latter year was transferred to Mungret College, Limerick. Of his life in Mungret a colleague, who had been a fellow novice, writes :
“Fr. MacDonald spent the last twelve years of his life in Mungret. Whether he realised it ot not, when coming in 1945 that return to his great work in China was not to be, he certainly lost no time in settling down to the life of an ordinary member of the teaching staff. He had taught for six years as a Scholastic in Australia, and during twelve years in the East he had well noted the zeal of Chinese boys, when given the opportunity of a secondary education. It is to be feared that the Irish boy did not always measure up to full standard in that respect, but that did not take Fr. Dan by surprise nor depress him unduly, Pretending to be shocked at their lack of zeal, he would tell them very seriously how different things were in the Orient, how the Chinese lad disliked the end of school term and approaching holidays. It was not for holidays they had come to school, It was for education and more education that was what they were paying for. How different!
In the class room he was not what one would call a driver, but he knew the art of good control and could punish for an offence or irregularity in his own effective way, never with undue severity. His diligence in preparation for classes. was truly extraordinary, as witness the volumes of notes, which he left behind, all written with extreme care in his own delightfully legible handwriting. At the end of the year he would contrive to acquire a store of cast off, half used, exercise books. These would supply the material for the notes of the next year.
But it was not only in the boys' studies that he was interested; he was interested in everything concerning them, particularly in their games. In all Weathers he was a constant spectator of the Sunday outmatch - it was one of the few recreations he allowed himself - and he would be sure to be at Thomond Park to cheer the team on. His experience in Australia had given him a keen interest in several games and no little facility in the important work of training teams.
After ten years on the teaching stafi, during which he was Spiritual Father to the Apostolics, he was appointed Superior of the Apostolic School. It seemed an office eminently suited to his gifts of nature and grace, an outlet for his zeal for the foreign mission field. In the second year of his regime the School increased to the record number of 81.
No terms of praise would be too high for Fr. MacDonald's contribution to community life. Though most indulgent as regards others, he seemed to have set himself against any exemption from common life. His quiet sense of humour could see the bright side of most situations, and a little turn of phrase accompanied with his own genial smile left a very pleasant memory, Recreation in his company was pleasant indeed. He was always occupied and yet he had time for everybody-time, as some one said, to suffer fools gladly.
He literally worked to the end. No one in the community had any suspicion that all was not well with him. He kept his troubles to himself. It is now under stood that he had suffered a good deal for at least twelve months, but through it all he had a smile and a helping hand for everybody. Only on 13th May, when he sent for Father Rector and asked to be anointed, was it realised how serious was his condition. The end came quickly. After two days of considerable pain and suffering, patiently and silently borne, he passed to his eternal reward. May he rest in peace”.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Dan MacDonald 1891-1957
Fr Dan MacDonald in the words of his contemporaries, was a miniature St Ignatius, both in appearance and character.

Born in the Archdiocese of Armagh, he was educated at the Seminary there by the Vincentians. His family gave many members to the Church. His brother was Vicar and Dean of the Archdiocese, his nephew became Administrator of Dundalk.

For the greater portion of his priestly life he laboured in China, being one of the founder members of the Hong Kong Mission. He became a thorough master in the language, and he was engaged in producing a dictionary in Chinese. So intense was his application, both in schools and on the dictionary, that his health broke down and he returned to Ireland. At his death he was in charge of the Apostolic School at Mungret.

He died in harness, asking to be anointed on the 13th May 1957, and he passed to his reward the following day.

King, Henry, 1889-1963, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/51
  • Person
  • 23 June 1889-31 August 1963

Born: 23 June 1889, Castlepollard, County Westmeath
Entered: 29 September 1911, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1922, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 31 August 1963, Meath Hospital, Dublin

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Had studied forBA before entry

by 1914 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1922 at Hastings, Sussex, England (LUGD) studying
by 1927 at Paray-le-Monial France (LUGD) making Tertianship

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 39th Year No 1 1964

Obituary :

Fr Henry King SJ

Fr. “Hal” King, as he was affectionately known in the Province, died very suddenly on 31st August, 1963, in the Meath Hospital, Dublin, following on a surgical intervention. He was actually engaged on retreat work in England and was due to give the thirty days' retreat to the students in Clonliffe College for the twelfth time when his prostate trouble developed with fatal results.
Born at Castlepollard, Co. Westmeath, on 23rd June, 1889, second son in a family of ten, he spent the years 1900-1907 as a boy in Clongowes. He excelled both in studies and games, was an exhibitioner in each grade in the old Intermediate and was on the house cricket XI. In his final year at College he won the Palles gold medal in mathematics as well as a first class entrance scholarship in mathematics to the University. Though received by the Provincial, Fr. John Conmee, in 1907, he did not enter the noviceship till four years later as his father, who was a dispensary doctor and justice of the peace in Castlepollard, objected, apparently, to his entering. From Clonliffe College he attended lectures in U.C.D. in mathematics and logic for his First and Second Arts, and in 1911 obtained his B.A. in philosophy. The year previous to his entry into the Society he spent at Winton House, a hostel for university students run by our Fathers in the south side of the city.
As soon as he reached the age of twenty-one he was able to carry out his long-cherished resolve to join the Society which he did on 29th September, 1911. After taking his Vows he studied philosophy in Stonyhurst, Lancashire, for two years and was then master and Third Line Prefect in his old alma mater from 1915 to 1919. In the latter year he began his theological studies first at Milltown Park and for the second, third and fourth years at Ore Place, Hastings. He was ordained at Milltown on 15th August, 1922 at the hands of Most Rev. William Miller, O.M.I,
Before making his Third Year probation at Paray-le-Monial in 1926-7 he spent one year at Mungret as prefect and one year as Higher Line Prefect in Clongowes. It was during this latter year that the College XV under his training won from the sister college Belvedere the coveted senior schools' rugby cup, an event that still evokes mingled feelings! After returning from Paray, Fr. King was made Socius to the Master of Novices a position he held till 1931, first at Tullabeg and, on the transfer of the novitiate in August 1930, at St. Mary's, Emo. From 1931 he was at Mungret College, first as Prefect and then as Minister (1932-36). For the next six years he was back again at Clongowes as Higher Line Prefect. In 1942 a new chapter in his career was opened and a new field to his priestly zeal. Writing the usual biographical details that are asked for from entrants to the novitiate, Br. King, as he then was, mentioned the “strong attraction he felt towards missionary work such as the hearing of confessions, the direction of souls and preaching”. This attraction was from 1942 to the end to be fully catered for. Up to 1949 he was based at Galway and travelled extensively giving the Exercises to religious communities and to pupils in boarding and day schools. Then at Milltown Park he worked in the same capacity, and for many years was also attached to the retreat staff there, busily occupied in giving priests' and laymen's retreats. He was also for some years Superior of missions and retreats.
True to the conception of St. Ignatius, Fr. King was never merely the preacher of a retreat; he was always the director; he gave spiritual direction its essential place in every retreat. He had made a close study of the Exercises, was well read in spiritual literature, and given his solid firm judgment was well qualified for the work of the discernment of spirits. Perhaps the best tribute to his competence as a retreat-giver and director was the fact that he was appointed to give the thirty days' retreat to the young students of Holy Cross College, Clonliffe, and held that position for eleven consecutive years. His spiritual influence on a great number of young priests and students of the Dublin archdiocese was undoubtedly very considerable: he came to be a sort of an institution at Clonliffe until his sudden death.
Fr. King was endowed with many social gifts; his charm of manner, his “gay and festive” spirit, his unruffled patience and good humour endeared him to a host of friends both within and without the Society and went to explain the ascendancy he exercised over externs. We end by citing a passage from The Leader of October 1963 in this connection:
“I had not the opportunity of meeting the late Fr. Henry (Hal) King very often, but for a short time I did meet him frequently. I thought that he was one of the most perfect human beings I have ever met. There was an impression of completeness, of serenity about him that in my experience was rather exceptional. I have not known very many Jesuits, but I have been very fortunate in those I have met. It was a blessing to know Fr. King. I am aware that many people, not only the hundreds who went annually to Milltown, but others who kept in touch with him by correspondence felt in his presence the grace of the Master. He spent himself in that cause, and there is none more precious”.
Requiescat in pace.

Higgins, Jeremiah, 1892-1965, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1448
  • Person
  • 30 September 1892-23 January 1965

Born: 30 September 1892, Cork City
Entered: 07 September 1910, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1924, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 23 January 1965, Mater Hospital, Dublin

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

by 1916 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
1918-1921 Rathfarnham - Studied for BA at UCD
by 1927 at Valkenburg, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) making Tertianship

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 40th Year No 2 1965
Fr Jerry Higgins SJ (1892-1965)
Fr. John Casey was for many years Spiritual Father to the philosophers in Tullabeg. He was level-headed and solidly sound, and in clear-cut statements gave carefully measured advice. To a philosopher about to begin his colleges he remarked : “I see you are assigned to the Crescent. I see you are the only scholastic there. I see too that Fr. Higgins is going there from Galway. Make a friend of Fr. Higgins. He is a man who will say little at recreation. But visit him in his room. You will find him kind and helpful. He is a friend worth having”.
Fr, Bat Coughlan was a rock of wisdom and learning, a confessor sought after by laymen and priests. “If ever I meet a case”, he once said, “that requires patience and kindness and understanding I know no one better to whom to send it than to Fr. Higgins, I am reluctant, however, to impose on him because I know how much such cases cost him in physical energy”.
These are unsolicited testimonies from two very different men, These were men who had lived with Fr. Higgins and had come to know his worth. Those who had not lived with him or who never broke through his quiet reserve found it difficult to keep in conversation with him. When one knew Fr. Higgins, conversation either flowed naturally or the silences were restful. One did not feel the need to talk, a friend was near. Fr. Higgins will be remembered with affection by all those who lived with him especially in Gardiner Street and more especially during the seven years when he was Minister. It was as Minister that he was forced to show to all, gifts that were well known to his intimate friends. His room as Minister was a “half-way house” for every member of the community, and he was everyone's friend. He was never fussed, one got the impression that the complicated and ever changing weekly lists of preachers, supplies and Masses worked automatically, Fr. Higgins had a charm that attracted every one to him, he was cultured and refined. He knew and loved a good book, he delighted in good pictures and appreciated good music. He read German, French, Italian and Irish classics in their original language, and he wrote perfect Latin with ease and his sermons in English were considered to be gems of literature - many have expressed the hope that they have been preserved and may perhaps be published. Fr. Higgins spent most of his life in the classroom. With his rich background of wide reading and his naturally well ordered mind and a manner, though quiet, demanded respect, he was a teacher well above average. Teaching, however, must have been a trial to him, because he was not the type that would force an unwilling horse to drink ! He was at his best when his listeners were sympathetic. Intellectual converts appreciated him. On every page of the Baptismal Register in Gardiner Street his name appears and often more than once, during his years there. He has an uncanny gift of finding the exact book that answered all the needs of the varied converts whom he instructed during his years in Gardiner Street. One would think that it was just by chance that he picked the right book-but far from it. His knowledge of the good books was wide and his judgment on a piece of writing was accurate and fair. He loved a good joke, and could tell one. He could sum up a person or a situation in a few words that said everything.
Fr. Higgins detested the sham and the artificial in every department, education, spiritual life, national life. His keen and balanced judgment saw through every facade. It was no light cross for him to bear with those who were satisfied with the second-best. Fr. Jerry was a delightful companion on a journey and he 'made' a villa. To the last years of his life he had the gift of joining in the general fun of men twenty or thirty years his junior. A game of cards where Jerry took a hand was sure to be an enjoyable game, if for no other reason than that he gave himself wholeheartedly to it. Order and neatness and regularity and painstaking care to detail marked everything he did. One would venture to say that nowhere in the Province are there Ministers' books written up-to date with a minimum of words and a maximum of information as one will find in Gardiner Street covering the years that Fr. Jerry was Minister there. As a confessor he had a big following of hard cases. “Go to Fr. Jeremiah” was a cant-phrase in the underworld of human weakness. The cardinals in the church missed him much when unable to be their Spiritual Director. The nurses in the Mater wept when he died. He is missed in Gardiner Street community, too. Ar dheis Dé go raibh sé.

Hayes, Denis, 1893-1964, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/741
  • Person
  • 04 February 1893-30 June 1964

Born: 04 February 1893, Wilton, Cork City,
Entered: 07 September 1911, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1925, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 30 June 1964, Mater Hospital, Dublin

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

Tertianship at Tullabeg

by 1917 at St Aloysius, Jersey, Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1918 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1923 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 39th Year No 4 1964

Obituary :

Fr Denis Hayes SJ (1893-1964)

Fr. Denis Hayes died unexpectedly in the Mater Hospital in the early. hours of the morning on the 30th June. He was in his 71st year and his 53rd in the Society.
About a fortnight before his death he had been ill with a form of gastro-enteritis and had responded well to hospital treatment. The evening before his death he was visited by one of the Belvedere community who found him in excellent spirits, chatty and cheerful, he even expressed his belief that “I'll be back home at the end of the week!” But, the next morning the nurse on night duty heard groans coming from his room, and on entering found him in pain and seemingly unconscious. She summoned the chaplain, who in due time anointed him. His death was thought to have been caused by a heart attack or a cerebral haemorrhage.
During the last two years Fr. Hayes often referred to his general weakness, especially in walking; his eyes gave him trouble in reading, and his handwriting had become shaky and difficult to cypher, and often it was obvious that he was suffering great pain. Yet, he was very much alive and keenly interested in the college and "the doings of Ours". His death came as a great shock to the community, as most of them were away on villa or giving retreats, etc.
Fr. Hayes was born in the city of Cork and educated by the Presentation Brothers. He entered the Society at Tullabeg in 1911 and came to Rathfarnham Castle, the newly established Juniorate in 1913. After two years spent in the university he left for philosophy with the French Province in the Isle of Jersey. Here his health gave him trouble and it was thought advisable to send him to St. Mary's Hall, Stonyhurst, for his second year. In the year 1918, with First World War raging, all the members of the Province doing philosophy abroad were recalled to Milltown Park, where a portion of the building had been set up as a philosophate. After philosophy in Milltown Park Fr. Hayes taught at Mungret College and was “Third Prefect” (1919-1923). He began his theology in Louvain but his health again caused anxiety and he was recalled to Milltown Park where on the 31st of July 1925 he was ordained. He did his tertianship in Tullabeg and was next appointed to Clongowes Wood College. During his six years there, he had been Prefect of the “Big Study” and two years Prefect of Studies (1931-1933). Then, he became Minister of Milltown Park and Assistant Procurator for three years (the word Economist had not come into vogue at this time). The years 1937 to 1939 he was Minister at Belvedere College and took charge of the finances of the Hong Kong Mission, this last office he held for nine years. In 1939 he became Procurator at Milltown Park and Assistant-Procurator of the Province and after six years at Milltown he returned to Belvedere College, where he was to spend the remaining nineteen years of his life. Eighteen years of these he was Procurator and for two years of these he taught Religious Knowledge in the School of Technology at Bolton Street.
As a teacher Fr. Hayes was esteemed for his clearness and conciseness. As a disciplinarian he carried universal respect. Off duty, the boys found him playful and to them he manifested a deep humanity. To his con temporaries in the Society he was generally very much at his ease. With those he did not know well he could be disconcertingly silent and gave the false impression of indifference. By nature he was extremely shy and sensitive. His keen powers of observation were proverbial. From the various important offices he filled one can judge that his interests were of a practical nature. He was popular with children and with people in banks and business houses. This was even more noticeable with the medical and nursing staffs in hospitals where he had been a patient, many of whom were represented at his Obsequies. As a community man, he was most punctual at all duties, in fact no one ever saw him late for any duty. His room in Belvedere College was in the old part of the house and to every offer made by Superiors to ease his efforts he declined to come to a lower room in the new wing of the school. He wished for no exemption nor did he wish to cause any unnecessary trouble by changing rooms. He once admitted to a friend: “I've been in the same room for nineteen years, I'll stay there until the end!” Requiescat in pace.

Hehir, Thomas, 1892-1955, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1439
  • Person
  • 04 December 1892-13 February 1955

Born: 04 December 1892, Richmond, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Entered: 07 September 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1925, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1928, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 13 February 1955, St Aloysius College, Milson’s Point, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Older brother of Noel - RIP 1947

by 1919 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1923 at Hastings, Sussex, England (LUGD) studying
by 1927 at Paray-le-Monial France (LUGD) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Torn Hehir, elder brother to Noel, was a cheerful youth, always full of life and well to the fore when anything was being done. He was good at football and cricket, and educated at Xavier College. He studied law after he left school, and surprised his friends when he decided to enter the Society at St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, 7 December 1912. He later gained a BA at the National University of Ireland in classics, studied philosophy at Jersey, 1918-21, and did regency at Belvedere College, 1921-22, before theology at Ore Place, Hastings. Tertianship was at Paray-le-Monial, France.
Hehir returned to Australia in 1927 and was on the staff of Xavier College for one year before going to St Aloysius' College, Milsons Point, to take up duty as prefect of studies, a post that he held for eight years. He is remembered for being efficient and capable. The wayward quailed at the thought of an interview with him, but students found him most stimulating and inspiring. He had wide interests, was a voracious but selective reader with a most retentive memory.
In 1936 he was transferred to Riverview; but in 1937 he was back at St Aloysius' College for one year. The years 1938-39 were again spent teaching and as debating master at Riverview, but he returned again to St Aloysius' College in 1940 to take his brother Noel's place as rector. Sickness and the anxiety and worry of the war years caused him to age rapidly and he was a tired man when he was relieved of his burden in 1944. He gradually recovered to the extent that he was once again able to take the field as a football coach.
The best years of his life were spent at St Aloysius' College - he loved every stone of the place and he spent most of his holidays doing jobs in and around the school. He was interested in the senior students and enjoyed meeting Old Boys. Many of his former students, however, found him a very hard man, most severe in his manner and mode of disciplining. Most were scared of him, especially in his latter years.
For three years previous to his death he was deputy chairman of the NSW Catholic Secondary Teachers Association. He had most to do with the revision of the constitution of that body He was also the Catholic representative on the English syllabus committee for ten years.
He was a small man who worked hard and was steady and reliable. He was devoted to his younger brother, Noel, and after his death, Tom seemed to lose his own grip on life.

O'Callaghan, Joseph, 1895-1973, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1865
  • Person
  • 14 June 1895-16 May 1973

Born: 14 June 1895, Toolamba, Victoria, Australia
Entered: 30 March 1916, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Final Vows 02 February 1927, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 16 May 1973, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL 05 April 1931

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Joseph O’Callaghan educated at St Ambrose primary school, Brunswick, Vic., and was a clerk for some years before entering the Society at Loyola College, Greenwich, 30 March 1916. His first appointment was to Xavier College, 1919-21, to perform domestic duties, and he spent the rest of his life doing the many odd jobs that crop up daily in any community.
He was at Burke Hall, 1921-36; Kostka Hall, 1937-39; and at the senior school of Xavier College, 1940-72. During this latter time, he was at various times, sacristan, in charge of the
garden, infirmarian, storekeeper, refectorian, caring for the farm, and assistant procurator. For many years he kept the boys' accounts and was a model of neatness and accuracy He also organised the annual Xavier villa.
At Burke Hall he was in charge of the staff, grounds, accounts and sacristy, as well as being buyer, and helper with prefecting. He was responsible for the building of the main oval, and also helped build the oval at Kostka Hall, a few years later.
He was a faithful worker, sometimes too direct for some people, but he was determined that any job had to be completed as well as possible. He was a keen Carlton football supporter. His daily walk around Kew was a feature of his life. He would rise at 5 am, and attend Mass at 6 am, either at Xavier or in the parish church. His health had been precarious with cancer for several years before his death, which he sustained with characteristic resoluteness.

Neary, John J, 1889-1983, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/303
  • Person
  • 20 August 1889-24 October 1983

Born: 20 August 1889, Rathgar, Dublin
Entered: 05 October 1908, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1922, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1927, Shiuhing, China
Died: 24 October 1983, Our Lady's Hospice, Harold's Cross, Dublin

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

by 1917 at St Aloysius, Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1927 first Hong Kong Missioner with George Byrne
by 1950 at St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Wales (ANG) Tertian Instructor

◆ Hong Kong Catholic Archives :
Father Neary

Only a few septuagenarians and octogenarians in the Hong Kong public can have even faint memories of Father John Neary, who died in Ireland last week, aged 94. He has nevertheless his little niche in our history. He was one of the two Jesuits - Father George Byrne was the other - who came here on 2 December 1926, to start Jesuit work in Hong Kong. Their early decisions have influenced all later Jesuit work here.

He stayed here only five years. In 1931 his health broke down and he had to return to Ireland, where, as Master of Novices or as Instructor of Tertians, he played a large part in the formation of most of the Jesuits now in Hong Kong.

Memory of him lasted long even in this city of short memories. In my earlier years here, I was amazed to find a variety of people still asking for news about him many years after his departure. The late Father Andrew Granelli, P.I.M.E., spoke more and more of Father Neary as his own life neared its end. Their friendship had outlasted forty years of separation.

Father Neary never forgot Hong Kong. When I visited him two years ago he was already 92, but he was full of eager and probing questions about developments here. Streets and buildings and people were still fresh in his memory. He had shortly before been greatly cheered by a visit from Archbishop Tang, whom he remembered as a young Jesuit Student. His thoughts were with us to the end. He deserves a few inches of space in a Hong Kong Catholic Paper.
Sunday Examiner Hong Kong - 4 November 1983

◆ Biographical Notes of the Jesuits in Hong Kong 1926-2000, by Frederick Hok-ming Cheung PhD, Wonder Press Company 2013 ISBN 978 9881223814 :
Born in Dublin in 1889, his early education was at Mount Saint Mary’s in England.

In 1926 Fr John Fahy appointed him and George Byrne to respond to the request from Bishop Valtora of Hong Kong for Jesuit help.

He visited the Jesuits in Macau and Shiuhing as well as Shanghai. Their first project was Ricci Hall at Hong Kong University together with work at Canton Cathedral. he held Wah Yan in great esteem.

By 1931 he had health issues. He was sent back to Ireland where he had an outstanding period at Belvedere College SJ, and became Novice Master

Note from Paddy Finneran Entry
With the encouragement of Michael Murphy he then entered the Novitiate at St Mary’s, Emo under the newly appointed Novice Master John Neary.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 2nd Year No 2 1927

Fr Pigot attended the Pan-Pacific Science Congress in Tokyo as a delegate representing the Australian Commonwealth Government. He was Secretary to the Seismological Section, and read two important papers. On the journey home he spent some time in hospital in Shanghai, and later touched at Hong Kong where he met Frs. Byrne and Neary.

Irish Province News 59th Year No 1 1984


Fr John Neary (1889-1908-1983)

In this age of questionnaires and surveys it is not beyond the bounds of possibility that we might at some time be pondering as to which Irish Jesuit could claim to be most mimicked. I'm pretty sure that one contestant, namely John Neary, would far outstrip the others. He would have a head-start for two reasons: first, his mannerisms were easy to copy even by those not particularly gifted at mimicry; and secondly he guided into the Irish Province of the Society a greater number of candidates than any other known Master of Novices. He held that formative position for eleven years and indeed had contact with novices for a further nine years while he was Spiritual Father in Emo.
Mimicry can be cruel, of course, but it can also be harmless, and in this case I think it was a measure of the affection which he generated. His tones, his manual and facial gestures, his some what quaint turns of phrase, were prime targets for his would be copiers; but there was never any hint of malice or ill-feeling in the imitation. I'm sure he cannot have avoided hearing the echo at odd times: and I'm equally sure that he would not have felt any resentment. He would probably have merely chuckled to himself.
My acquaintance with him (to which this account is naturally restricted; let others tell the rest of the story) was confined to the noviceship period, a brief month or so in the Tertianship, when he filled in for Fr Hugh Kelly and finally the last seven years of his life at Gardiner street and Our Lady's Hospice. Opinions differ as to his value as a Master of Novices. Others are better qualified to judge; I found him kindly and discerning. He could harden and raise his voice at times, he could give virtue', but it was always to those who could take it; it was never crushing or ridiculous, in the full sense. Incidentally, I never did discover whether the “honking” which preceded his appearance around the corner was necessary throat-clearing or an early warning signal – and likewise with the slipper-dragging routine (this certainly was no “pussyfooting”, by any count!).
Though he was a firm believer in de more he used to illustrate the good use of creatures by changing routine to fit in with exceptional weather. During both our years in Emo the lake froze hard (enough to allow horses with padded hooves to pull tree-trunks from one side of the lake to the other) and we were all herded out to learn to skate, willy-nilly. As everyone knows. he had a great interest in bee-keeping, too, but it was only the chosen few, the “discreets”, who were allowed to assist him and involve themselves in this speciality. His appreciation of the health-giving properties of honey (and, later on of half bananas!) was to last to the end of his days. A spoonful, given semi-secretly in his room, was considered an infallible cure for anything from the blues' to a heavy cold.
There was never any doubt about his zeal. Fr Tom Ryan wrote of him: “Zeal for conversion was always characteristic of him. During his theology in Milltown Park he had Protestant converts continually on hand”. Altogether he spent twenty years in Emo and was in Gardiner street for about the same length of time. There he continued, unobtrusively, this work of finding and instructing those who were interested in the faith. I think his special interest in converts and in ecumenism may have stemmed originally from his enormous devotion to Cardinal Newman and his writings. Many were the cuttings from newspapers and the Tablet concerning Newman that he left behind. (He had apparently one of those love-hate relationships with the Tablet - castigating it vigorously for its anti-Irish attitude, yet waiting breathlessly for the next issue. Indeed, one of the few naughty memories about him is the image of the hand appearing suddenly around the reading room door, casting deftly on to the table that missing copy of the Tablet. I think it must have been his greatest crime, the nearest thing to an inordinate attachment!).
He lived a frugal style of life and showed a practical sympathy with the poor, as evidenced by his devotion to an respect for the St Vincent de Paul Society. A little incident he related illustrates this fact, and, as å by-product, his type of humour (faintly wicked at times). On one occasion the conference members he directed were discussing the amount of assistance they should give to what is now called a “single parent” of several children from different stock. He told me that he dissuaded the brothers from providing the double-bed requested by the lady in question!
His greatest achievement of all was, without the slightest shadow of doubt, our mission to China. Fr Ryan wrote: “He may to a very great extent be said to have been the originator of the Irish Province mission to China. It is almost certain that it would not have been undertaken at the time it was, but for him”. Some time before he had to retire to Our Lady's Hospice I thought it would be worthwhile recording his memories of the start of that mission. So I interviewed him in his room, with the aid of a cheap tape-recorder and found him surprisingly co-operative. (He adapted to modern inventions, customs and changes extremely well). It was only afterwards that I discovered a similar account written by him for the 1933 Jesuit Year Book. A comparison of the two versions proved how accurate his memory was. Moreover, after his death I read some of the correspondence he had with Fr Fahy. This not only proved his great power of almost total recall about this period of his life but also revealed his humility while confirming what Fr Ryan wrote. Before that, even from his own account, I had not realised how much he had manoeuvred Fr Fahy into beginning the mission, and how much the Provincial was guided by him. He gave the impression, of course that he was only doing the bidding of his superior!
Although he spent less than five years in Hong Kong, his heart remained there for as long as it beat. As he said himself, he was always interested in the mission and listened avidly to the reports of those who came back home on visits. The ultimate proof of his intense interest was to be given at the very end of his life. During the last few months before he died there were long periods when he obviously thought he was in Hong Kong or that the conversation of his visitors referred to the colony as he knew it
In his notes on the history of the Jesuit Mission in Hong Kong, the late Fr Tom Ryan, one of the earliest superiors of that Mission, wrote at considerable length about Fr Neary and I think he is worth quoting yet again. Many of the qualities he spotted in “Pa Neary” will be easily recognised:
“Fr John Neary, a Dublin man. educated at Mount St Mary's in England, was ... absolutely matter-of fact and down to earth. He was of great precision of thought and speech, and even of movement. He had not much imagination, but he had an excellent sense of humour and had great natural kindness. As he suffered seriously from asthma, he never would have been sent to a foreign mission except for the great interest which he had in missionary work ... He had absolutely no ear for music and could distinguish ‘tones’ with difficulty, so the study for him was doubly hard, but he recognised the difficulty and practised the tones for hours on end every day, to the dismay at first of his teacher, since he compelled him to listen to him until he got them right. The result was that even though there was always something artificial in the way in which he spoke Chinese, his absolute accuracy was commented upon by all”.
He died as he had lived, unobtrusively - almost secretly. For two nights he appeared to be on the point of departure ... but, as usual, he refused to be hurried. His great faith and serene piety were marked by the fact that his lips were moving continuously in prayer. On the second night, before we left the bed side, his nephew, Fr Peter Lemass, recited the prayer for the dying composed by his beloved John Henry Newman. Early next morning, as though in a final demonstration of his sleight of hand, he slipped away in our absence. He could not quite fool the nuns, however. A large group of the community, including their provincial, had gathered around and they were praying with and for him as he breathed his last light breath. It was not, of course, the end for him, but, as more than one Jesuit which many came to see and admire; remarked, it was the end of an era for the Irish Province.

Murphy, Thomas, 1894-1968, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1807
  • Person
  • 21 September 1894-02 October 1968

Born: 21 September 1894, Dublin
Entered: 30 June 1916, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1927, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 02 October 1968, St Camillus' Hospital, Shelbourne Road, Limerick

Part of the Mungret College, Co Limerick community at the time of death

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 44th Year No 1 1969
Obituary :
Br Thomas Murphy SJ (1894-1968)
On Wednesday, October 2nd at about 1.15 p.m. Brother Murphy passed peacefully to his reward. It was a happy and blessed ending to a happy and holy life, but his loss leaves us all poorer. We miss his cheerful, holy and ever helpful presence around the House.
He was a patient of the Regional Hospital, Limerick for some weeks till August when he was transferred to St. Camillus Hospital. In both hospitals the nursing staff were very fond of him. He never gave any trouble and was always good humoured. Thanks be to God he did not seem to have pain at any time. On Wednesday morning the 2nd October he failed rapidly. Fr. Rector returned to him immediately and received his last breath. He was fortified with all the rites of the Church.
The remains were removed to the Boys' Chapel on Thursday evening, The President and Secretary of the Union, other past pupils and teachers from the College were present. It was 2 memorable sight as the hearse and cars moved through the boys drawn up on either side of the avenue. On Friday morning the Chapel was packed to over-flowing with priests, brothers, boys, friends and neighbours. We had past pupils from Limerick, Tipperary and even Australia. It was a most impressive ceremony; sung lauds followed by Concelebrated Requiem Mass and a sermon by Fr. Kerr who was Rector here until July last. It is thought it was the biggest funeral ever seen here; ič is easy to believe it. In many ways it was a very joyous occasion because we all felt that Brother Murphy had gone home to God. His beloved flag was at half mast. In all, over fifty priests and brothers were present including Fr. Vice-Provincial (Fr. Provincial was in Rome his Secretary, Fr. Rectors of Belvedere, Crescent and Clongowes, and priests and brothers from Galway, Tullabeg, Clongowes, Crescent, Rathfarn ham, Milltown Park, Gonzaga, Gardiner St. and Belvedere.
The Brothers of his own Community saw him as “a humble and simple man” who had a great devotion to Our Lady and the Rosary, who was to be found either praying in the Domestic Chapel or going about his work.
May God rest his lovable soul. We all thought as much of him as he did of Mungret. Nobody who heard it will ever forget the beautiful tribute paid by Fr. Kerr when he addressed the congregation after the Gospel. We are very grateful to him for allowing us to reproduce it here :
“It is not customary to have a homily or panegyric preached at the funeral of an Irish Jesuit, but Fr. Rector suggested to me, that when a man has served one house for 48 years as Brother Murphy served Mungret it was only fitting that some tribute should be paid.
In 1962 the then General of the Society of Jesus sent a Visitator to the Irish Province. The Visitor, not knowing any of the men, asked each of us to write a brief account of what we had done in the Society. This is what Brother Murphy wrote: ‘From 1918-1919 I was in Belvedere on the house’ - one sentence ‘From 1919-1920 I was in the Crescent on the house’ - one sentence. ‘Since that time I have been in Mungret’. (And then reading on, one feels that the love and affection of the old man for this College took possession of his pen, for he continued) ‘There I was in charge of the water-supply. I looked after the wells and the pumping system. I attended and operated the electricity generator till the coming of the E.S.B. I attended to the maintenance of the house, the roofs, the chimneys and the heating system.
'All these, your reverence, thank God I was able to do’.
This was Brother Murphy's simple statement of his life's work, but it told little of the man who was one of the best known and best loved Jesuits of the Mungret Community. Each of the past, and I’m glad to see them represented here today - has his own favourite image of Brother Murphy. Some remember him as a young man flitting about the roof-tops, hanging in the most precarious positions, calling cheery greetings to the boys below. Others think of him covered with grime tending the electrical generators or servicing the bunkers. Still others see him as he strode across the Apostolics' field on his way to the pump-house at Cahir, with his little black dog at his heels; and none can forget his smile in the Boys' refectory as he slipped an extra serve to a hungry 3rd Clubber! But all of us remember him as he walked on the stone corridor at eventide telling his Beads or kneeling at the back of the Boys' Chapel during Benediction or the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Which of us will ever forget the ritual with which he surrounded the hoisting of the college flag. He used it to honour a visitor, to celebrate a feast or to congratulate the Boys on a victory. That flag flies at half-mast today in his honour, but we can be certain that all the flags of Heaven are unfurled today as they welcome their faithful servant.
Every clerical student who passed through Mungret remembers one thing about Brother Murphy : his extraordinary reverence for the priesthood. Many a young man, wavering in his vocation, depressed and feeling lonely made his way to Brother Murphy to find comfort, solace, guidance and strength. Is it any wonder then that his Christmas mail from America, Australia, England, Africa and China was the wonder of the rest of the community.
How often do I remember being called to the parlour to entertain one of the Past either a priest, or layman with his family! When a brief period had elapsed and the visitor felt that he had fulfilled all the requirements of courtesy or etiquette by talking to Fr. Rector then came the moment of truth : ‘well, Father, what I really called for, was to see Brother Murphy!’
Each year as examination time and ordinations approached in Carlow, All Hallows, Thurles, St. Peters and the other major seminaries, the letters poured into Mungret asking for Brother Murphy's prayers, for all the boys revered him as a saint. The roof-tops were not the only heights he reached. He had attained the closest union with God and he had the ability to communicate his love of Him to others.
I find it difficult today to ask you to pray for Brother Murphy, for all of us know that he already enjoys the Vision of God. He always prayed for and he will continue to pray for all in Mungret, for its priests, its brothers, its scholastics, its students, its day-staff, its farm-staff and domestic staff. So I would ask you now to stand and join with me in the Prayers of the Faithful for the eternal and happy repose of his soul with the God he loved and served so well”.

Kelly, Jeremiah, 1890-1950, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/206
  • Person
  • 10 August 1890-12 January 1950

Born: 10 August 1890, Dromgill, Borrisoleigh, County Tipperary
Entered: 15 October 1910, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1927, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 12 January 1950, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

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

Studied for BA in Classics at UCD; Ordained at Milltown Park

by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1917 in Australia - Regency at Xavier College, Kew
by 1922 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
1925-1926 Paray-le-Monial - Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Jeremiah Kelly entered the Society at the age of twenty, and after initial Jesuit studies taught at Xavier College, 1916-20, as well as being hall prefect and in charge of the choir.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 25th Year No 2 1950
Fr. Jeremiah Kelly (1890-1910-1950)
Fr. Jeremiah Kelly was born at Dromgill, Borrisoleigh, Co. Tipperary on August 10th, 1890. In August, 1905 he entered the Apostolic School and went through the full course of Secondary Studies and took the Firsts Arts Examination in 1910. He then entered the novitiate and later finished his course for the B.A. which he passed in 1914.
After his Philosophy course at St. Mary's Hall, Stonyhurst, he went to Xavier College, Kew where he was both Master and Prefect for five years. Little is known by the present writer of his activities in Australia, but one thing that he brought back from Australia was a great love for that country and the Australians. On his return from Australia Fr. Kelly was sent to Louvain for his Theology. He returned to Ireland for his ordination which took place in Milltown on 31st July, 1923. He finished his Theology and went to Paray-le-Monial for his Tertianship. He both hoped and expected to go to Australia and thus went into “training” round the “track” at Paray-le-Monial. He bought his “tropical” outfit but to his surprise the status of 1926 listed him as Superior of the Apostolic School.
As a Jesuit Fr. Kelly spent 21 years at Munget : 15 as Superior and 6 as Rector. When Fr. Kelly took up office in 1926 he found on the staff of the College, Fr. W. Kane who had taught him as a boy. Both men served as admirable links with past students and past traditions.
Fr. Kelly's work for the Apostolic School may best be summed up in the words of a former student who, on the occasion of Fr. Jerry's: death wrote :
“He made the Encyclical on the Priesthood the standard for the Apostolics and he lived it himself. Many were the material problems which Fr. Kelly had to face in his early days at Mungret but he never allowed them to overshadow. the primacy of the spiritual life of the Apostolics. His weekly talks on the Encyclical were summarised in typewritten form on a sheet and hung up in public so that the students could refresh their minds on the matter of the lecture. It was his aim to nake sure that every student who left the Apostolic School should know not only the dignity to which he was called but also the responsibilities of his calling.
His devotion to the spiritual life of the Apostolics was shown in a remarkable way by his devotion to the explanation of the points for their morning meditation. Most of us realise the monotony of explaining the same series of meditation points from the same meditation book day in day out for some years. But to have done so for some 15 years is a labour which should reap for him now a bountiful harvest of prayers from his former students. And Fr. Jerry did find the strain of the constant explanation of ‘points’. How often did he say : ‘Weekly talks are a pleasure, but points drain the life's blood out of me”.
Yet he remained faithful to his purpose and his devotion to duty in this matter was a most forceful argument to his appeals to the Apostolics to be ‘faithful to the last’. Fidelity to duty, fidelity to duty now in small things, was a constant theme in his talks. But above all, faithfulness to duty in spiritual things was of real importance in his life and in the lives of the future priests.
Under Fr. Kelly there was no danger that the Apostolics would lose themselves in vague dreams of the glories of a missionary life. The ‘Present’ was not to be wasted in thinking of ‘The Future”. While urging them on to higher things - his duc in altum became a constant refrain - he left them under no illusions about the value of the work in which they were engaged at the moment--for as he would often say ‘Your first parish is Mungret and so let your light shine before men’.
That he was a strict disciplinarian no one will deny. Yet while he could be severe in reprehending breaches of discipline, he had that wonderful art by which the delinquent realised that there was nothing personal in the reprimand and relations between offender and superior were very quickly brought back to that harmonious level which Fr. Jerry so deeply prized. He was a great believer in what he called ‘Informal Education’. As the child learns, almost unconsciously from the constant and intimate living with its parents, so too the boy in our colleges was to learn from the constant contact with real religious men—the future priest from the actual priest in whom he should see the concrete fulfilment of the Encyclical on the Priesthood.
As a teacher of Philosophy, Fr. Kelly seemed to have been specially graced by God to teach the future priests of the foreign missions. He himself professed that he knew little about Philosophy, yet all his students paid and still pay tribute to his remarkable method of getting across not only the theoretical philosophy but also the practical philosophy. From his almost unending correspondence with past students a labour of love indeed, but very much a labour when one's hands are crippled by rheumatism -- he kept himself fully informed of the problems of the young priest and in his lectures he prepared them for the actual problems they would have to face. His determined aim was to get in philosophy as a whole and many students have spoken of the way Fr. Kelly would come into class with only a Theses Sheet and there and then show how one thesis was linked with another and thus ‘the wandering class’, was often the most instructive. His introduction of a De Universa Examination at the end of the two years course in Philosophy was a move which raised in definite manner the standard of philosophy and earned for our students when they went to Theological colleges a solid respect for their philosophical equipment.
Fr. Kelly was determined that his students should have not only a high standard of philosophical knowledge but also a high standard of general culture. He encouraged them constantly to cultivate the habit of reading and provided them with a really wonderful library. He wanted them to get the ‘atmosphere’ of books so that they would feel lonely without them. His attention to the various exercises in public speaking was most devoted and he was certainly anxious that they should be able to speak the word of God with dignity. Moreover being himself a living example of the text : ‘To be all things to all men’ he did everything in his power to encourage his boys to mix with one another and to be a thoroughly happy family. For the philosophers he built the Smoke Hut where they could realise both their dignity and the trust he placed in them. For the other boys he provided billiard rooms, tennis courts and other facilities of recreation where they could meet and get to know one another”.
Though Fr. Kelly realised that his first work for many years was that of the Apostolic School, yet he was never too busy to take a deep and living interest in the rest of the house. He always had a cheering word and a smile for the boys as they came to and from class. He had the gift of remembering family details and many a 3rd clubber was charmed to hear Fr. Jerry ask about his little sister who had, accompanied her brother on his first trip to Mungret. For eight years he was Spiritual Father of the Layboys and in the period before leaving school many of the senior boys sought his advice in their own personal problems.
Difficult, indeed, were the material problems, caused by World War II, which faced Fr. Kelly when he became Rector of Mungret in 1941. His aim was to prevent, as far as possible, any curtailing of the usual amenities for the boys and, on the other hand, to avoid, by sedulous administration, increasing debt. The anxiety and worry of these difficult years were probably the cause of his somewhat premature death. For many years he had suffered from various forms of rheumatism and arthritis, and while he did his best to hide his suffering those near him realised what he suffered. He remained always cheerful and never wished to have things better than others. One must indeed, admire the greatheartedness of the man who could say with a smile playing round his lips : “I'm bad to-day, thank God”. When Fr. Kelly laid down his office as Rector in 1947, he had the satisfaction of knowing that the number of students in the college had increased by about one-third.
The late Fr. Canavan once described Fr. Kelly as “The Prince of Hosts”. This was an aspect of Fr. Kelly's character somewhat unknown to those who had no direct contact with Mungret. Members of the Society who came to Mungret as visitors will always remember the man who was there to make them feel at home who seemed to have little else to do but to entertain them and to see that they had all the little attentions so often indeliberately forgotten. Be the visitor brother, scholastic or priest, there was always the same real genial welcome. Past students, lay and apostolic, were always welcome and made feel that they were returning home. One of our own has summed up the man in the following lines. “Unfortunately I did not know him - I think I spoke to him only twice. But I remember on each of these occasions a warmth and sincerity that were out of the ordinary”. The warmth and sincerity were certainly there but perhaps not many are aware that such geniality and hospitality were not the outcome of a natural social disposition but the outcome of a conscious virtue. Those who knew him intimately knew how he dreaded the servant's approach with the message of visitors and they have seen him, after the visitors had departed, lying on his bed prostrate with exhaustion.
In July, 1947 Fr. Kelly went to Milltown as Procurator. For a time he seemed rejuvenated. The Dublin air had apparently cured him of his rheumatism and arthritis and his friends were amazed to see him move his hands and feet with such freedom. But such a happy state did not last long. In summer of 1949 he was in St. Vincent's with high blood pressure. After a long stay there he returned to lead a very quiet life at Milltown. Shortly after Christmas he had a stroke and returned once more to St. Vincent's where on the 12th January, 1950 a great-hearted soul that had exhausted itself in the service of others went quietly to its reward. We close this notice with the words of a mother of a past pupil :
“May the clay lie softly on his bones-to know him and to shake him by the hand was to love him”. R.I.P.

Kelly, Thomas P, 1890-1977, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/210
  • Person
  • 07 April 1890-29 July 1977

Born: 07 April 1890, Blackrock, County Dublin
Entered: 01 October 1912, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 08 December 1926, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 29 July 1977, Our Lady’s Hospice, Harold’s Cross Dublin

Part of the College of Industrial Relations, Dublin community at the time of death

Older brother of Austin Kelly - RIP 1978

I year of Theology at Holy Cross College, Clonliffe, Dublin before entry
Studied for BA at UCD

by 1916 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1945 at Cardigan Road, Leeds (ANG) working
by 1948 at SFX Liverpool (ANG) working
by 1950 at Bourton Hall, Rugby, Derbyshire (ANG) working
by 1954 at St Ignatius London (ANG) working

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 52nd Year No 4 1977

College of Industrial Relations
On Friday morning, July 29, Fr Tom Kelly died in Our Lady's Hospice at the fine old age of 87 years. He had been steadily deteriorating and passed away quietly and peacefully just as he would have wished. Fr Tom was essentially a simple man prone to scrupulosity. He had endeared himself to the Sisters and Nurses who showed him much kindness at all times. He is sorely missed by his nephews and nieces, particularly Rose Maguire who was very devoted to Fr Tom.

Irish Province News 56th Year No 3 1981

Fr Thomas P Kelly (1890-1912-1977)
As a scholastic he had the unpleasant job of Gallery Prefect in Clongowes (at least I think so) and had to help out in the big study when the priest in charge was sick. He made his tertianship in Tullabeg under Fr Bridge, 1925-26, and together with his brother Augustine, who afterwards became Provincial in Australia, he gave the Lenten Mission in the “People's Church”. It was said that the men preferred Fr Tom and the ladies, Fr Austin. He was a chaplain during World War II.

Saul, Michael, 1884-1932, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/392
  • Person
  • 01 January 1884-21 June 1932

Born: 01 January 1884, Drumconrath, County Meath
Entered 09 October 1909, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1919, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, Belvedere College SJ, Dublin
Died: 21 June 1932, Sacred Heart College, Canton, China

Editor of An Timire, 1922-28.

by 1912 at St Luigi, Birkirkara, Malta (SIC) Regency
by 1914 at Valkenburg, Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1915 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1931 fourth wave Hong Kong Missioners

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 1st Year No 3 1926

The Irish Sodality : This Sodality is directed by Fr Michael McGrath. It grew out of the first week-end retreat in Irish at Milltown Park in 1916. After the retreat, steps were taken with a view to the formation of an Irish-speaking Sodality for men. Success attended the effort, and the first meeting was held in Gardiner Street on Friday in Passion Week. The Sodality soon numbered 400 members. In 1917 a second Irish-speaking Sodality, exclusively for women, was established. In a short time it was found advisable to amalgamate the two branches. The Sodality is now in a flourishing condition, and has every prospect of a bright future before it. In addition to the Sodality, there is an annual “open” retreat given in Gardiner Street to Irish speakers. The first of these retreats was given in 1923 by Fr Coghlan, he also gave the second the following year. The third was given by Father Saul.

Irish Province News 7th Year No 4 1932

Obituary :

Our mission in China has suffered grave loss by the deaths of two of its most zealous missioners, Our hope is that the willing sacrifice of their lives will bring down the blessing of God on the mission, and help in the gathering of a rich harvest of souls for Christ.

Fr Michael Saul

Father Saul was born at Drumconrath. Co Meath, on the Ist January, 1884, educated at Mungret College and began his novitiate at Tullabeg, 9th October, 1908. Immediately after the novitiate he was sent to Malta and spent two years teaching in the College S. Luigi. Philosophy followed, the first year at Valkenburg, the second and third at Stonyhurst then one year teaching at Mungret, and in 1916 be commenced theology at Milltown. At the end of the four years he went to the Crescent for another year, and then to Tertianship at Tullabeg.
In 1922 he was appointed Assistant Director of the Irish Messenger, and held the position for five years when he went to Gardiner St, as Miss. excurr. In 1930 the ardent wish of Father Saul’s heart was gratified, and he sailed for China. In less than two years' hard work the end came, and the Almighty called him to his reward.
The following appreciation comes from Father T. Counihan :
“It is a great tribute to any man that hardly has the news of his death been broadcast than requests arise in many quarters for a memorial to him. Only a few days after his death I met
a member of the Gaelic League who informed me that a move rent was on foot in that organisation to collect subscriptions for a suitable memorial. Father Saul had thrown himself heart and soul into the work of that organisation for the Irish language.
But there was a movement dearer to his heart, a language he hankered after even as ardently. That movement was the Foreign Missions, and that language was Chinese. That was the dream of Michael Saul all through his novitiate. Death for souls in China was his wish, and God gave it to him. But he must have found it hard to have been snatched away just
when his work was beginning.
I remember him well in the old days in Tullabeg under what we like to call-and quite cheerfully and thankfully “the stern times”. Brother Saul was heavy and patriarchal and more ancient than the rest of us. With extraordinary persistence he sought out the hard things, and never spared himself in the performance of public or private penances. His zeal for all these things, and his acceptance of knocks and humiliations with a quaint chuckle are still fresh in my mind. He put himself in the forefront whenever a nasty job had to be done. I suppose he considered that, as he was ancient in years, he should lead the way.
He once took two of us younger ones on a long walk, so long that we had to come home at a pace not modest, and all the way home he kept us at the Rosary.
I never saw him despondent - serious, yes, but never sad, never ill-humoured, He was ready to face any situation, grapple with any difficulty, and always encouraged and cheered up
others in their difficulties.
This spirit Michael Saul carried with him through life in the Society. lt caused some to criticise him a little too much I have heard it said that he was too zealous, too insistent, but he was loved by those for whom he worked, and was sincerity itself”.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Michael Saul 1884-1932
Fr Michael was one of the pioneers of our Mission in Hong Kong.

He was born at Drumconrath County Meath on January 1 1884 and received his early education in Mungret. He did not enter the Society until he was 22 years of age.

He was an ardent lover of the Irish language, and a keen worker in the Gaelic League in his early days and as a young priest. But, he had a greater love, to convert souls in China.

His zeal for souls was intense, and when he died of cholera in Canton June 21st 1932 is twas said of him “They will get no peace in Heaven, until they do what Fr Saul wants for China”.

Ronan, John 1893-1979, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/381
  • Person
  • 11 February 1893-08 August 1979

Born: 11 February 1893, Dublin
Entered 02 June 1915, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows 02 February 1926, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died 08 August 1979, Milltown Park, Dublin

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 54th Year No 3 and 4 1979

Obituary :

Br John Ronan (1893-1913-1979)

John Ronan was born in Dublin on 11 February 1893. His family had Scottish connections and John used like to take his holidays in Scotland. It may well be that it was from his father he inherited his dry wit and his gift with words. He attended National School and then a Christian Brothers school to sixth standard, and joined the novitiate at Tullabeg in the year 1913. The precise date was a subject of controversy between John and a succession of editors of the Province Catalogue: in the Catalogue he consistently appears as entering in 1915; Fathers Aubrey Gwynn and Fergal McGrath, however, recall that John was in Tullabeg in 1913; further, John's Final Vow formula is dated 2nd February 1926, which indicates that he must have taken First Vows in 1915 or early 1916.
In 1918 a young man was despatched from Tullabeg to Gardiner Street; the Minister, Father Bury, greeted the news with joy: “This is splendid: he will tempt the Fathers to eat better because of his good cooking!” John was twenty-five then, and his gift for making people happy is well attested; he was asked for by various houses, and a member of the Province who arrived in houses which Brother John had just left recalls that John was remembered with gratitude and affection. Cooks have a central place and wield great power within their domains: John cooked for his brethren for thirty years and made them happy because he was generous, painstaking and thoughtful. He worked in Gardiner Street (1918-23), Rathfarnham Castle (1923 36), Belvedere (1926-29), Clongowes (1929-31), Emo (1931-35), Mungret (1935-38), Tullabeg (1938-43), St Ignatius, Galway (1943-47), Crescent (1947-48), Clongowes again (1948-58), Manresa (1958-59) and finally Milltown Park (1959-79).
It was during the last twenty years of his life that the present writer came to know and appreciate him. He was assistant to Brother John Rogers in the bindery and ad dom. He was neat and self-contained; had a small stocky frame, large and long face, black hair, steel rimmed glasses, black chesterfield and boots which had long since seen their best days; he made an unusual figure both within and outside the house. He loved the city of Dublin and was the best known of the community on the 11 bus route; drivers used make unscheduled stops to take him aboard. They loved him more for his easy chat and good-humoured wit than for the sweets he used give them. He aged imperceptibly, for he was built of durable stuff. He seemed indestructible, as was illustrated when at the age of eighty three he came limping home after an affair with a car; he was reluctant to admit to the accident, went off to take a bath to ease his wounds and was back in action the following day. He was delightfully unpredictable in ways, and free of shyness in his relating to others. To illustrate: passing the Gas Company showrooms one day, he looked in and saw a salesgirl within who looked very gloomy. He went in: “I'd like to ask you about a gadget which you're advertising; you don't seem to have it on display”. “What is it?” she replied grumpily. “Well, you've an ad saying: Make your tea in a jiffy! I'd like to see a jiffy and know how it works!” As she tried to explain she began to smile. After a while, he said: “I know well what a jiffy is, but you look a lot happier now than when I came in!” And off he went.
John was seventy years old when Vatican II came, bringing to an end an era of stability in which regularity of practice and unswerving loyalty to authority were the characteristic of the faithful, John among them. The way was opened for new forms of religious and personal expression, with questioning and experimentation the order of the day. Like many of his generation, John found the sweeping changes in Catholic and Jesuit life hard to understand; the new forms of expression and the eclipse of the old left him confused. He was ill at ease in the new Milltown Park, and voiced his reservations with great honesty to his superiors and to the community; he was distressed that his critiques met with little effective response; he felt that a sympathetic hearing of his views was not enough. Values were at risk, as his eagle eye could see, and he loved religious life and the Province enough to do what he could to safeguard these values. Now that we as a Province are moving into calmer waters we can be grateful to John and others like him who have acted as reminders of the central qualities which must characterise any religious life worthy of the name.
Together with the difficulty he experienced in adjusting to the upheavals of aggiornamento, John went through a long period of indifferent health. For sixteen years his problem was wrongly diagnosed and treated, until finally Dr Dan Kelly brought him relief. The wit which had been so noted in him before was less evident in the latter years, though it emerged in flashes still, and brought many a smile. The younger brethren who overslept were labelled “the rising generation”; “All for me, dear Jesus!” was a remark used for a certain Father whom John thought as caring for himself a little too well. Some found it disconcerting to pass him on the corridor and half-hear a devastating remark as he shuffled away, but this may have been a device to communicate and keep in touch with those whose ways he found hard to understand. He detested beards, and persisted for quite a time with one scholastic in an anti-beard campaign until the object of his attentions asked him to ease up, whereupon to his surprise John said: “I’m only waying it because I like you”! A few years ago he fell into conversation with a lady on the front drive: he confided that he had been sent down town to buy two butterfly nets for the Rector (these were in fact intended for the removal of leaves from the swimming pool), He then launched into an incisive commentary on the Rector’s general performance, and told how the superiors of old used stay in their offices and appear mainly at mealtimes whereas the present one ... etc., etc. At the front door the lady revealed that she was the Rector's mother. Nothing daunted, he bade farewell with the remark: “See if you can't do something with him!”
Over a long lifetime John used his gifts well; he was cook, dispenser, house steward, manuductor, assistant bookbinder; he was a respected watch-mender, fiddled with radios - one of his crystal sets is still extant; he made walking sticks for those who, unlike himself, enjoyed the countryside. The present writer, more than forty years his junior, never knew him in his heyday, but considers his sixty-six years of service to the brethren a remarkable achievement worthy of the gratitude which was expressed by the wide represen tation of Province members at John’s requiem. What I find more remarkable, however, is the manner in which he continued his life of service to the very end. He might well have felt that by his eightieth year he had done enough, that he was no longer needed or wanted, that he could legitimately retire. Instead he took on a new role - that of postman and messenger. In finding yet one more way to serve the brethren he was typical of a great tradition of Jesuit brothers; having early on, in the words of the Kingdom exercise offered himself “entirely for the work”, he carried through to the end his promise of availability. While he was glad to have a daily task and was upset when the protracted mail-strike from February to June of this year left him with little to do, the work took its toll, and he was frequently to be seen suffering from attacks of dizziness, sitting along the corridor with his head between his hands.
What was sad in the final years was that it was hard to convince him that he was appreciated. Superiors had with doubtful wisdom allowed too much to change for him to be other than wary of well intentioned compliments. He developed the habit of blessing himself as they went by. Yet he had his friends in the community, and also among the lay-staff. He delighted in chatting with the latter and running errands for them; he continued to get cut-price cigarettes in Clery's for one woman long after she had given up smoking, for she had not the heart to tell him she no longer needed them. Moreover, he always presented the best side of community life to outsiders. I quote from a letter of his nephew: “John always spoke with great pride of your Society ... and of the wonderful work which is being done by everyone within the order”. That reticence, however, which often blocks us from speaking within the community of that pride we feel for the brethren afflicted John too. There's the story of the two scholastics who came early to supper and found John sitting down before them. “Supper doesn't begin till six!” he admonished them. “Ah”, they answered, “but we have an excuse; we're off on apostolic work. We're working for God!” “That's obvious”, said John. “If you were working for anyone else you'd have been sacked long ago!”
Of the inner life of such a man one of my generation can only guess. Surely there must have existed a deep union between God and himself to make him so consistently faithful to his religious practices, so simple and frugal in his dress and way of life, so willing to live out a life of uneventful service. He had to face the sufferings of loneli ness, ill-health, confusion and perhaps even a sense of betrayal over the changes that came in the last years of his life. One thinks of the hardships of the disciple’s calling in the gospel of Luke; of Ignatius' prayer: “To give and not to count the cost”; of Hopkins sonnet on St Alphonsus Rodriguez; of K Rahner's account of the “wintry spirituality of many Jesuits”.
His death, like his life, was simple, unadorned, unromantic and without fuss. When asked about his health earlier this year, he used reply: “I'm all right, Father, you have to keep going, if you lie down they'll put you in a box?” He was moved down to the Chapel Corridor a month before he died: he had already renamed that corridor “the coffin corridor” some time before. He accepted the change with macabre humour; the door of his new room would be just the right size to get out the coffin! He sought out his friend Dr Dan Kelly at St Vincent’s, the day before he died. He knew with his quiet realism that he was dying, yet he refused to stay in hospital; he wanted to die at home. A life-long Pioneer, he took a little brandy that night; the end came peacefully about 6 am the following morning; it is hard to think that he was reluctant to go. I like to think of him now as surprised by joy at his meeting with the Lord, amazed and delighted at hearing the divine commendation for his life of service. Gone now the misunderstandings that marred the last years; if the communion of saints means anything, we at Milltown Park may confidently hope that he will keep a brotherly eye on us and on our affairs, now that he has entered into new service as God's messenger of grace to us.

A writer from the Far East would like to add the following:
A fine, warm-hearted man, whose conversation on spiritual and secular matters had the quality of suavitas. Knowing that he was from the Coombe, I associated him with a man like Dean Swift - he had that observation of people and that natural eloquence of the Dubliner. A dedicated man, he had that warm humanity so befitting a Jesuit, and which the Brothers by their prayer and simplicity have given so fully to the Society. May he pray for us to be gifted with more vocations like his

Ryan, Thomas F, 1889-1971, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/391
  • Person
  • 30 December 1889-04 February 1971

Born: 30 December 1889, Cork City, County Cork
Entered: 07 September 1907, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1922, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 04 February 1971, Canossa Hospital, Hong Kong - Hong Kong Province (HK)

Part of the Wah Yan College, Hong Kong community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to HK : 03 December 1966

Mission Superior of the Irish Mission to Hong Kong 1947-1950

by 1912 at Cividale del Friuli, Udine Italy (VEN) studying
by 1925 at Paray-le-Monial France (LUGD) making Tertianship
by 1934 at Catholic Mission, Ngau-Pei-Lan, Shiuhing (Zhaoqing), Guandong, China (LUS) Regency
by 1935 at Wah Yan, Hong Kong - working

◆ Hong Kong Catholic Archives :
Death of Father T.F. Ryan, S.J.

Father Thomas Ryan, SJ of Wah Yan College, Hong Kong, died at Canossa Hospital on 4 February 1971, aged 81.

He was born in Cork, Ireland, on 30 December 1889. On the completion of his secondary education, he joined the Jesuits and was ordained priest in 1922, after the usual Jesuit course of studies.

After his ordination he became editor, first of the Madonna, and later of the Irish messenger of the Sacred Heart. With his editorial work he combined a vigorous social apostolate and soon became the refuge of all Dublin parents whose children were getting into trouble. He was always businesslike and never soft, yet he won the confidence of the young delinquents as well as that of the children’s court: before he left Ireland in 1933, he visited every prison in Ireland to say goodbye to old friends who had graduated into adult delinquents without losing their trust in Father Ryan. The army of slum-dwellers who came to see him when he was leaving for Hong Kong has entered into the folk memory of Dublin.

When he reached Hong Kong, Father Ryan was 43. His effort to learn Cantonese met with little success, so to his lasting regret, he found himself cut off from the direct social work that he had practiced in Ireland. He turned instead to social organisation, then much needed in a community that was dominated by almost unadulterated laissez faire - no Welfare Department in those days and very few voluntary agencies or associations. Despite the fact that he was senior teacher of English in Wah Yan College and editor of the Rock, a lively monthly of general interest, he threw himself into whole-heartedly into committee work and into seeing to it that the decisions of the committees were carried out. The development of a social conscience in Hong Kong was due in large measure to the work of Bishop Hall, then at the head of the Anglican diocese of Hong Kong and Macau, and Father Ryan. The Hong Kong Housing Society - the pioneer of organised low-cost housing in Hong Kong -was on fruit of their labours.

When Canton fell to the Japanese in 1938 and refugees began to pour into Hong Kong, the task of providing for the refugees who poured into Hong Kong fell largely upon a committee of which Bishop Hall and Father Ryan were the leading spirits, and the executive work, providing food and shelter, fell chiefly to Father Ryan.

With all this Father Ryan had already begun his career as a broadcaster on music and the arts generally. In time he became music critic to the South China Morning Post. By some he was thought of quite wrongly, as chiefly an aesthete. Soon after the fall of Hong Kong to the Japanese in 1941, he went first to Kweilin, Kwangsi, and later to Chungking, where he did relief work and continued his broadcasting.

After the war came perhaps the oddest period of his varied life. There was a grave shortage of the administrators needed to restart the shattered life of Hong Kong. The then Colonial Secretary, who had seem Father Ryan at work in Chungking, asked him to take over the directorship of Botany and Forestry and to help in setting up a Department of Agriculture. Father Ryan, city-born and city-bred, knew nothing about botany, forestry or agriculture, but he did know how to get reliable information and advice and how to get things done. He welded his co-workers into a team and was soon busy introducing a New South Wales method of planting seedlings, planting roadsides, experimenting with oil production and looking for boars to raise the standard of Hong Kong pig-breeding. Having discovered that middlemen were exploiting the New Territories vegetable growers, he went into vigorous action, founding the Wholesale Vegetable Marketing Organisation. The middlemen put up a fight but the WVMO won.

In 1947 regular administrators were available. Father Ryan laid down his official responsibilities, only to find a new responsibility as superior of the Hong Kong Jesuits. A man of striking initiative, he showed himself ready as superior to welcome initiative in others. “It has never been done before” always made him eager to reply “Let us do it now”. The plan for new buildings for Wah Yan Colleges in Hong Kong and Kowloon came from him, though the execution of the plan fell to his successor, Father R. Harris.

On ceasing to be superior in 1950, Father Ryan continued his writing, broadcasting and teaching - only his teaching had been interrupted. His books include China through Catholic Eyes, Jesuits Under Fire (siege of Hong Kong), The Story of a Hundred Years (history of the P.I.M.E. in Hong Kong), Jesuits in China and Catholic Guide to Hong Kong.

By this time father Ryan knew an enormous number of people in Hong Kong. His forthright and at times brusque manner did appeal to everyone; he had stood on many a corn in his time. But a very large number of people treasured his friendship and his advice, and a constant stream of callers was part of his life in his later active years. The advice was giving vigorously and uncompromisingly, and was all the more valued for that.

In 1964 the University of Hong Kong conferred upon him an honorary Doctorate of Letters. At the conferring, Father Ryan was the spokesman who expressed the thanks of the five who received honorary degrees that day. This was his last important public appearance, for by then his health had begun to fail. There was no loss of intellectual clarity of interest in current affairs - at his funeral - one of his visitors in his last few days in hospital reported that Father Ryan had submitted him to the usual searching examination into everything that was happening in Hong Kong. Physically, however, he had become weak, and he suffered much pain.

A period of comparative seclusion now began. All his life he had slept only about four hours daily and had worked for the rest of the time. When he found himself unable to do what he regarded as serious work, he became impatient to die. He suffered greatly and several times seemed on the verge of death. His partial recoveries from these bad spells caused him nothing but annoyance. The much longed - for end came at 9am on 4 February.
Sunday Examiner Hong Kong - 12 February 1971

◆ Jesuits under Fire - In the siege of Hong Kong 1941, by Thomas F. Ryan, S.J., London and Dublin Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd, 1945.
◆ The Story of a Hundred Years, by Thomas F. Ryan, S.J., Catholic Truth Society Hong Kong, 1959.
◆ Catholic Guide to Hong Kong, by Thomas F. Ryan, S.J., Catholic Truth Society Hong Kong, 1962.

◆ Biographical Notes of the Jesuits in Hong Kong 1926-2000, by Frederick Hok-ming Cheung PhD, Wonder Press Company 2013 ISBN 978 9881223814 :
He entered the Society in Ireland having won a gold medal in national public examinations. As a young Jesuit he spent many years in Europe developing his lifelong knowledge and love for art, music and literature, which made him a man of culture and refinement. He did a Masters at UCD, and taught for six years of Regency before being Ordained a priest in1922. He taught at Belvedere College SJ and was also on the editorial staff of the Messenger of the Sacred Heart. He had a great interest in many welfare projects with the plight of Dublin’s poorest people, slum dwellers, and in particular their children. He founded the Belvedere Newsboys Club for street kids and also the Housing Association to provide cheap flats for their parents. He was on the bench of the Juvenile Courts, and during his time visited every remand home, reformatory and institute of detention in Ireland. He was a member of the Playground Association and on the Committee of the Industrial Development Association.
He was sent to Hong Kong in 1933. He first went to Siu Hing (Canton) to learn Cantonese and then returned to teach at Wah Yan Hong Kong. He became editor of the “Rock” monthly magazine from 1935-1941. Here his vigorous personality expressed strong convictions on social problems and abuses in Hong Kong.He championed the Franco cause for which he received a decoration from the Spanish government. at the same time he was giving interesting and stimulating talks on English novelists, poets and dramatists, along with talks on art, music and painting. he preached regularly over “ZBW” - the predecessor of RTHK. Every aspect of Hong Kong life interested him. He worked for the underprivileged. He encouraged the “Shoe Shiners Club”, which later blossomed into the “Boys and Girls Clubs Association” under Joseph Howatson. With the Anglican Bishop, Ronald Otto Hall, he founded the HK Housing Society in 1938. It was refounded in 1950 to build low cost housing on land given by the Hong Kong government at favourable rates. The rents received were used to repay loans from the government within 40 years. In 1981, the “Ryan Building” (Lak Yan Lau), a 22 storey building in the Western District was named after him. It had a ground floor for shops, offices and a children’s playground on the second floor. The other floors contained 100 flats. He was a founding member of the Social Welfare Advisory Committee, a member of the Board of Education, Religious advisory Committee on Broadcasting and the City Hall Committee, and belonged to many other civic groups.
During the Japanese occupation he was not sought out by the authorities - even tough he had castigated that Japanese Military for their inhuman conduct in China. He got each Jesuit to write up their experience of the 19 days of siege under the Japanese, and this collection was later published as “Jesuits under Fire”.
In 1942 with Fr Harold Craig - who had come with him in 1933 - he went to Kwelin (Yunan) in mainland China, staying with Mgr Romaniello. He made analyses for the British Consulate and French Newspapers in Hanoi, and he worked at night with translators to make out trends of opinions in the Chinese press. With the Japanese advances in 1944, he went to Chungking where he was active in refugee work. He had good relations with the Allied Armies and their diplomatic missions, and was widely known through his radio broadcasts, which were heard far and wise, on music and literature. He was asked by Mr McDoal - a high ranking official in the Hong Kong government - to help rehabilitate Hong Kong with his drive and efficiency. He was appointed “Acting Superintendent of Agriculture, and so he set about reforesting eh hills which had been laid bare by people looking for fuel during the occupation. He had trees planted along the circular road of the New territories. Many of the trees in the Botanical Gardens were planned by him, with seeds brought from Australia. Seeing the plight of vegetable growers fall into the hands of middlemen, in 1946 he started the Wholesale Vegetable Marketing Organisation. There was retaliation from the middlemen, but they ultimately lost. With the return of permanent Government staff to Hong Kong, he returned to Ireland for a rest, and he returned as Mission Superior in 1947. With his customary energy, he set about buying land to start building Wah Yan Canton. He sent young Jesuits to work on social activities there - Patrick McGovern and Kevin O’Dwyer. He also negotiated the land and finance for the new Wah Yan Hong Kong and one in Kowloon.
He was active in setting up the new City Hall on Hong Kong Island in 1960. He was very active on radio work, in Western music and English poetry. His part in the Housing Society in some way was the cause for the government’s resettlement scheme. He was the most famous Jesuit in Hong Kong in those days, and probably one of the most dynamic Jesuits ever.
After completing his term as Mission Superior in 1850, he returned to teaching at Wah Yan Hong Kong, a work he considered to be the highest form of Jesuit activity. Here he was most successful. Most of his closest Chinese friends were his past students. He was also a close friend of Governor Alexander Grantham, a regular music critic for the South China Morning Post, and frequently wrote the programme notes for concerts and recitals by visiting musicians and orchestras.
In 1941 he published “Jesuits under Fire”. He edited “Archaeological Finds on Lamma Island”, the work of Daniel Finn. He also edited “China through Catholic Eyes”, “One Hundred Years” - a celebration of the HK diocese, “Jesuits in China” and “Catholic Guide to Hong Kong” - a history of the parishes up to 1960.
At the age of 60 he decided to retire and he withdrew from committees. His last public appearance was to receive an Honorary D Litt from the University of Hong Kong in recognition of his social, musical and literary contribution.
With dynamic character and strong convictions, he was impatient with inefficient or bureaucracy in dealing with human problems. Behind his serious appearance was shyness, deep humility and a kindness which endeared him to all. A man of great moral courage and high principles, he had a highly cultivated mind, with particular affection for the poor and needy. He looked forward to young people breaking new ground for the greater glory of God.
Social Work in Hong Kong
The development of a social conscience in Hong Kong was due in large measure to the work of Bishop Hall, the Anglican Bishop of Hong Kong and Macau, and Thomas Ryan. The Hong Kong Housing Association - a pioneer of organised low cost housing in Hong Kong - was the work of these too men as well. When Canton fell to the Japanese in 1938, and refugees began to pour into Hong Kong, the task of housing these people fell largely to a Committee of which Bishop Hall and Thomas were the leading spirits, and their executive work in providing food and shelter fell chiefly to Thomas. After the War there was a serious shortage of administrators needed to restart the shattered life of Hong Kong. The Colonial Secretary asked him to take over responsibility for Botany and Forestry and to help setting up a Department of Agriculture.
According to Alfred Deignan : “Thomas Ryan came to Hong Kong in 1933. At that time there was no Welfare Department and very few voluntary agencies of associations.... He was instrumental in setting up the HK Council of Social Service. In 1938 refugees poured into Hong Kong and he and Bishop Hall were the two priest leading the organisation of provision of food and shelter for the refugees.

Note from Paddy Joy Entry
According to Fr Thomas Ryan, Fr Joy’s outstanding qualities were “devotion to his task and solid common sense........ He probably was the Irish Province’s greatest gift to the Hong Kong Mission.”

Note from Tommy Martin Entry
He first arrived as a Scholastic for Regency in Hong Kong in 1933. He was accompanied by Frs Jack O’Meara and Thomas Ryan, and by two other Scholastics, John Foley and Dick Kennedy.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 8th Year No 4 1933
Belvedere College -
All those bound for Hong Kong and Australia left Ireland early in August. Father T. Ryan, who had been working for a considerable time among the poor of Dublin, had a big send-
off. The following account is taken from the Independent :
Rev. Thomas Ryan, S.J., who was the friend of Dublin newsboys and all tenement dwellers in Dublin, left the city last night for the China Mission. His departure was made the occasion for a remarkable demonstration of regret by the people amongst whom he had ministered for many years. For more than an hour before Father Ryan left Belvedere College, crowds assembled in the vicinity of that famous scholastic institution, hoping to get a last glimpse of the priest whom they had known and loved so long. A procession was formed, headed by St. Mary's Catholic Pipers' Band, and passed through Waterford St., Corporation St., and Lr. Gardiner St, to the North Wall. Catholic Boy Scouts (55 Dublin Troop), under Scoutmaster James O'Toole and District Secretary James Cassin, formed a Guard of Honour at the quayside and saluted Father Ryan as he stepped out of the motor car which followed the procession and went aboard the S.S. Lady Leinster. The scene at the quayside was one of the most remarkable witnessed for many years. Crowds surged around the gangway - many women with children in their arms -and, as the popular missionary made his way aboard, cried “God bless you, Father Ryan”. Father Ryan had to shake hands with scores of people before he was permitted to ascend the gangway, and hundreds of others lined the docks as far as Alexandra Basin to wave him farewell and cheer him on his departure. Among those who bade farewell to Father Ryan at the quayside were many of the priests from Belvedere College and members of the College Union.

Irish Province News 19th Year No 3 1944

“Jesuits Under Fire in the Siege of Hong Kong”, by Fr. Thomas Ryan, appeared from the Publisher, Burns Oates & Washbourne (London and Dublin, 10/6), in the last week of April. The book has received very favourable comment and is selling well. A review of it was broadcast from Radio Eireann on 29th May, by A. de Blacam. After a touching reference to the author, the reviewer went on as follows :
“These soldiers of the spirit (the Jesuit acquaintances of A. de Blacam posted in the midst of the conflict) were at their place of service. We could not regret that it was theirs to stand in momentary peril of death, ministering to the sufferers, Christians and pagans, men and women of many races and of both sides in the battle, and cannot regret that Fr. Tom was there, to compile the heroic story, as he has done so well in - Jesuits Under Fire. This must be one of the very best books that the war has brought forth, It concerns one of the most fierce and, in a way, most critical of the war's events; and it gains in interest, pathos, vividness and value by its detached authorship. A combatant hardly could write impartially. The non-combatant, by nationality a neutral, he can tell the story with the historic spirit, and as a priest with sacred compassion. To this, little need be added. Read the book; it cannot be summarised, and it calls for no criticism. Read of the physical horror of bombardment, and of the anguish of souls; the violence that spares not, because it cannot spare, age, sex or calling, in the havoc. Read of the priests’ work of healing and comfort, under fire of Fr. Gallagher moving a few yards by chance, or by divine Providence, from a spot in the building which immediately after received a direct hit-of the family Rosary that we had known long ago in our homes in Ireland, said in the shattered library, between the shellings, and Fr. Bourke sitting in the ruins to note down the marriages and baptisms of the day.”
The book should do valuable propaganda work for our Mission and awaken vocations to the Society. Presentation copies were sent to the relatives of all of Ours present in Hong Kong during the siege. Cardinal MacRory and the Bishops of the dioceses in Ireland where we have houses were sent copies of a limited edition de luxe. A few dates connected with the MS and its publication may be of interest. Rev. Fr. Provincial received the typescript from Free China on 15th January, 1943. Extra copies of the work had first to be typed, so that, in these the original perished for any reason, copies might be available. When the work of censoring had been completed, it remained to find a publisher. This was effected in August, 1943, when Burns Oates & Washbourne agreed to publish it, and the contract was signed by Fr. Provincial and Christopher Hollis (on behalf of the Company), on 20th September, 1943. Owing to unavoidable delays in the work of printing, it did not appear till 28th April, 1944. One benefit accruing from the delays attending the printing was that in the meantime much better paper was available than had originally been chosen.

Irish Province News 46th Year No 2 1971
Obituary :
Fr Thomas F Ryan SJ
Father Tommy Ryan died at Canossa Hospital, Hong Kong, on the evening of 4th February, aged 81. Early in January he had scalded a foot in a simple accident in his room, and went to hospital for treatment. He returned to Wah Yan for a few days in the middle of the month, and then (very untypical of him) asked to be brought back to hospital. After a heart complication towards the end of the month his condition gradually weakened and he entered a coma in which he finally died peacefully. He was laid to rest in the Happy Valley cemetery after a funeral Mass in St. Margaret's church on Saturday morning, 6th February. He had outlived many of his numerous friends and admirers in Hong Kong, and his long retirement had taken him out of public prominence, although to the end he had maintained contact with a wide circle of friends who appreciated his kind and courteous thoughtfulness. His advice too was gratefully sought by a number of people, for he retained an amazingly wide knowledge of Hong Kong affairs. Such was his reputation in government circles and among retired British civil servants and administrators that the current British Common Market negotiator, Mr. Geoffrey Rippon, called on “T.F.” during an official visit to Hong Kong last year. But the warmest letters of sympathy and remembrance which followed his death came from very ordinary people, notably from men who'd known him in his work in Dublin and in the early days of the Belvedere News boys' Club,
Fr Ryan was born in Cork, Ireland, on 30th December 1889, and entered the Society after completing his secondary education at Presentation College. During his studies he spent many years on the continent of Europe, and travelled widely as he had also done before entering, developing a life-long knowledge and love of art, music and literature which made him a man of culture and refinement. He obtained an M.A. degree from the National University of Ireland, taught the then usual 6 years of regency in Ireland, and was ordained in Dublin in 1922. After a further year in Italy, he was assigned to Belvedere College and the editorial staff of the Messenger of the Sacred Heart.
In addition to his teaching and writing, Fr Ryan immediately took a great interest in many welfare projects; he interested him self in the plight of Dublin's poorest people, slum dwellers, down and-outs and in particular their children. He helped found the Belvedere Newsboys Club for the street kids, and the Housing Society to provide decent cheap flats for their parents. For five years he sat on the bench of the Juvenile Court and during his time visited every Remand Home, Reformatory and institute or detention in Ireland; he was also a member of the Playground Association, and of the committee of the Industrial Development Association.
Fr Ryan had asked to be sent to Hong Kong as soon as the Mission was first mooted, but was not sent until 1933 after a T.D.'s quotation of him in Dail Eireann had raised some episcopal eyebrows. His departure from Dublin was an occasion in the city, a Royal send-off in which the newsboys of the city and their parents accompanied him to the boat, crowded the dockside and shouted themselves hoarse as his boat pulled away; “a demonstration of regret at the loss of the friends of Dublin newsboys and all tenement dwellers in Dublin”. After arriving in Hong Kong that autumn, Fr. Ryan went to Shiu Hing near Canton to study Chinese for a year, and then returned to teach at Wah Yan College in Robinson Road. He became editor of the Rock, a monthly periodical which made a mark in its time and is still remembered today. Fr Ryan's vigorous personality was apparent from the first issue he produced, and he continued as editor until the outbreak of war in 1941 and the occupation of Hong Kong ended its publication. The Rock was a vehicle for Fr Ryan's strongly-felt convictions on the social problems of Hong Kong and the abuses which he felt existed in the colony; he also, alone in Hong Kong, championed the Franco cause in the Spanish civil war, and later received a decoration from the Spanish government in recognition of his writings in those years. At the same time he was also becoming known as a radio personality, giving regular series of interesting and stimulating talks on English novelists, poets, dramatists, essayists, and on art and music, painters and composers. And he preached regularly on the air, over ZBW the predecessor of modern Radio Hong Kong.
Every facet of life in Hong Kong always interested him, and besides writing and talking he devoted much of his time to working for the under-privileged and people in need. At Wah Yan, he encouraged the founding of a Shoeshiners Club (on the pattern of the Belvedere Newsboys Club) which later blossomed into the present Boys and Girls' Clubs' Association; with the Anglican Bishop of Hong Kong and Macao, the Rt Rev R O Hall, he founded the Hong Kong Housing Society, the local pioneer in the fields of low-cost housing and housing management - the Society still has a Jesuit member on its committee and has been responsible for housing well over 100,000 people in about 20,000 flats in more than 14 estates, and he was involved with refugee and relief work before, during and after the Pacific War, beginning in 1938 when many thousands of people fled to Hong Kong in the wake of the Japanese invasion of South China - he recruited senior boys in the college to help, and was chairman of the War Relief Committee when the Japanese attacked Hong Kong in December 1941. In his later active years, Fr Ryan was a founder member of the Hong Kong Council of Social Service, a member of the Social Welfare Advisory Committee, of the Board of Education, of the Religious Advisory Committee on Broadcasting, of the City Hall Committee and several others.
In the Rock, Fr Ryan had frequently castigated the Japanese military for their inhuman conduct in China, and consequently was no keener on meeting them than anyone else when they captured Hong Kong. During the siege, he offered his services for any humanitarian work, and spent the early days assisting the administrative staff at Queen Mary Hospital, taking charge later on of the distribution of rice in the Central district where he narrowly escaped death during an air raid one morning. In the first weeks after the surrender, Fr Ryan got all of the Jesuits in Hong Kong to write their experiences of the 18 days of siege, which he later edited and had published as Jesuits Under Fire. Despite his forebodings, however, the Japanese did not seek him out, so he began to make arrangements to go into China. With Fr Harold Craig, who'd also arrived with him in 1933, he left Hong Kong on 17th May, 1942 for the tiny French settlement in Kwangchauwan, and arrived at Kweilin, Kwangsi, on 10th June. There he stayed with Msgr Romaniello and began getting in touch with the many Hong Kong Catholics passing through Kweilin. He helped many spiritually, and found employment for others, often with the allied forces as interpreters. For the British consulate in Kweilin, he made analyses of the French newspapers from Hanoi, and after HQ in Delhi read these he was working every night with a battery of translators making out the trends of opinion from the Chinese press. Life in war-time Kweilin could be hectic; like many cities in China at that time, quite often the city was deserted during the day as people went out to the caves in the nearby mountains when warnings of air-raids were given, returning at evening when normal city life began again and went on till the early hours of the morning. In mid 1944 Kweilin had to be abandoned before a Japanese advance towards Indochina, and Fr Ryan was brought by the British consulate party to Kweiyang where at first he stayed with the bishop. Recovering from a serious bout of pneumonia and convalescing with Fr Pat Grogan at the minor seminary a few miles out in the hills from the city, the question for Fr Ryan was where to move to next. The superior in Hong Kong, Fr Joy, had earlier decided against Fr Ryan going to Chungking; but the superior of the 'dispersi' in China, Fr Donnelly, decided that with the change of time and circumstances the prohibition no longer held. Fr Ryan agreed but declared that if it had been left to himself he would not go to Chungking Nevertheless he began to prepare for the journey north. He had been warned that Chungking was a hilly place without transport, so he practised climbing the hills around the minor seminary at Sze-tse-pa with Fr Grogan just to see if his heart was really equal to Chungking. Having decided that he had nothing to fear he started on the 3-day trip by military lorry to the war-time capital. There, with a Dominican friend from Kweilin, he ran an English-speaking church, St. Joseph's, and became active in refugee work, keeping up his good relations with the allied armies and their diplomatic missions. He was also involved in cultural activities in Chungking, and did a regular series of broadcasts on music and literature which were heard and appreciated by people as far apart as Burma and the southern Philippines. His knowledge of Hong Kong problems so impressed the British ambassador that he wanted Fr Ryan to fly to London to confer with the government there about Hong Kong; the ending of the war, however, changed the plans to Fr Ryan's great relief, and he was free to prepare to go back to Hong Kong,
At the end of the war in 1945 when British forces reoccupied Hong Kong, the then Colonial Secretary, Mr. McDougal who had known Fr Ryan in Chungking and admired his drive and efficiency, invited him to come to Hong Kong and give his services to the rehabilitation of the colony. Fr Ryan accepted, a plane was put as his disposal, and soon he found himself in the unusual position for a Jesuit of being a member of his Majesty's government in Hong Kong. He was appointed Acting Superintendent of Agriculture, and helped to set up the Department of Agriculture in 1946. Re-afforestation was one of the important problems on his desk, since the colony had been greatly denuded of trees during the occupation years. New methods of raising seedlings were introduced, red-tape circumvented in unorthodox ways in bringing in plants and seeds from Australia, many of the present trees and shrubs in the Botanical Gardens were planted (and Fr Ryan took a personal interest in the gardeners' welfare as well), large areas of the New Territories sown, and roadside trees planted along many thoroughfares. Another problem was the plight of the vegetable growers who were being exploited by middlemen; the farmers were getting very poor prices for their produce while consumers had to pay high prices. In 1946 the Wholesale Vegetable Marketing Organisation was set up to counteract the middlemen, who retaliated with a strong fight leading to some ugly incidents in the New Territories; eventually, however, the W.V.M.O. won out.
Early in 1947, with the return of the permanent members of the government, Fr Ryan was able to relinquish his official work and return to Ireland for a much needed rest. But he was a man who never believed in taking a rest, and by August of that year had returned to Hong Kong, having been appointed Regional Superior of the Mission in Hong Kong and Canton. In his new office he exercised his customary energy and vigour, made plans for educational developments in Canton, selected men to be sent abroad for specialised work in social and educational problems, and began plans for the building of the two new Wah Yan Colleges whose choice sites he was responsible for obtaining. His belief that the communists would never take Canton and the south was perhaps his most notable failure of judgement. On ceasing to be Superior in 1950 he returned eagerly to the classroom, a work he believed to be one of the highest forms of Jesuit activity and one in which he himself was very successful, most of his closest Chinese friends being former pupils of his; he always had a great interest and memory for boys he had taught. He also devoted much of his time and talents at this period to promoting social service and cultural activities, being associated with or actively engaged in almost every government committee concerned with the poor and underprivileged, as well as a personal friend and confidant of the Governor, Sir Alexander Grantham. He became the regular music critic of the South China Morning Post and frequently wrote the programme notes for concerts and recitals by visiting musicians and orchestras, as well as continuing to broadcast regularly about music, and give lectures. Literature (which he taught at Wah Yan), art and old Hong Kong were among his regular topics in speech and writing, and he was a contributor to the Jesuit monthly Outlook. He published Fr Dan Finn's Archeological Finds on Lamma Island and wrote a number of books over the years: China through Catholic Eyes, Ricci, One Hundred Years (the centenary of the diocese of HK), Jesuits in China, A Catholic Guide to Hong Kong he had visited every outlying parish, and at one time knew every street and backstreet of Hong Kong and Kowloon like the back of his hand.
At the age of 60, Fr Ryan characteristically decided that it was time for him to withdraw from many of the committees of which he was a member, to make way for younger people. However, he still continued to take an active interest in all his old activities and was frequently called upon for advice and help, by people of every class and nationality. He continued working and teaching for several more years, even after a severe heart attack in 1957 greatly curtailed his activities; ill-health finally forced him to retire in the early '60s, though his mind and brain remained as clear and acute as ever. His last public appearance was at the University of Hong Kong in 1966 when an Honorary Degree, D Litt., was conferred on him in recognition of his social, musical and literary work. In recent years, deteriorating health confined him to the house entirely, apart from occasional spells in hospital. Nevertheless he continued to receive a number of regular visitors whenever he felt up to it, and remained interested and well-informed on everything happening in Hong Kong, particularly in social questions, cultural activities and in government, as well as in the Society at large and in the activities of all the members of the province especially the scholastics, Jesuit visitors to the house, and our own men returning, from abroad, were usually subjected to his detailed questioning which revealed an already wide acquaintance with the topics he wanted more information about. With his knowledge and contacts, the advice and encouragement he readily gave to anyone, especially people concerned in social action, was invaluable,
A man of dynamic character and strong convictions, Fr Ryan had little patience with inefficiency, slovenliness, red tape or bureaucratic methods of dealing with human problems. Behind a somewhat serious appearance and sometimes brusque manner there was a shyness, a deep humility and a kindliness which endeared him to all who knew him well. He was a man of great moral courage and high principles, with a highly cultivated mind and a very particular affection for the poor and the needy; and, as many of his former pupils and others can testify, he was a genuine friend when one was needed. Though familiarly known to his colleagues as T.F. or Tommy, it was a familiarity one did not risk in his presence; perhaps his brethren were too cowed by his known force fulness and forthrightness and by the esteem and honour in which he was held; less inhibited outsiders spoke to him in a way no member of his community dared. Of course he had his foibles and pet hates; his extreme reticence and his ruthlessness in destroying most of his papers and writings have meant that much of the story of his life can never be told - from his occasional reminiscences, he clearly had a wealth of experiences and interests which would : have made a fascinating commentary on Dublin in the '20s, the recent history of Hong Kong and almost the whole history of the Society in this part of the world. Fr Tommy Ryan was undoubtedly one of the giants of this and of the Irish Province; his name and achievements deserve remembrance and gratitude beyond the circle of those who now miss his presence with us ... but his own preference was for obscurity, that he should not be a burden to anyone, and that younger people should break new ground, for the greater glory of God.
May he rest in peace.

Power, Cyril, 1890-1980, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/26
  • Person
  • 23 March 1890-19 March 1980

Born: 23 March 1890, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1907, St Stanislaus, College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 08 December 1926, St Ignatius, Leeson Street, Dublin
Died: 19 March 1980, Mater Hospital, Dublin

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Studied for MSc at UCD and MA (Cantab) at Cambridge University

by 1916 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1920 at St Edmund’s House, Cambridge, England (ANG) studying

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Cyril Power entered the Society at Tullamore in 1907. After tertianship in 1926, Power was on loan to the Australian Mission to teach moral theology, ethics and canon law at Werribee until the end of 1929. He returned to Ireland, and in October 1930 was made rector of Milltown Park, and then professor of moral theology for many years. As a professionally trained mathematician, he was eventually allowed to return to Clongowes where he spent twenty years teaching mathematics, and looking after the farm, which was what he had always wanted to do.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 9th Year No 3 1934

On 14th May the following notice was sent by Father Socius to all the Houses of the Irish Province. : “Rev. Father Provincial (Kieran) has been ordered a period of rest by his doctor, and in the meantime, with Father General's approval, Father Cyril Power has been appointed to act as Vice-Provincial.”

Irish Province News 55th Year No 2 1980


In Memory of Fr Cyril Power SJ, by Francis McKeagney (OC 1976)

They've all gone home now.
Just you and I, old man,
And the workmen shovelling clay,
The grave a foot too wide, a foot too deep they say.

To here,
This sheltering graveyard corner
With the Castle peeping through the trees,
You have come
Theologian, farmer, mathematician, Sir.
I remember most a cap,
“The demon on wheels”,
Nights, teeth out,
The class formulae
‘Wake up, man! Cos 2A?’
‘I bet he died with his pipe in his mouth’
Somebody said for something to say.

Your silence stood larger than any words said.

I suppose a modest black cross
Will be placed in due course
R. Pater C. Power, S.J.
Obiit March 19, 1980
And questions wait like prayers for answers
Inside the iron gates.

But it is time to leave.
A last few fading traces of snow whiten the hour.
A quiet quiet pervades the journey's end,
Rest a while, kind Sir, morning can't be far.
From somewhere in the maze of time's enormous corridors
I offer you this tiny flower,
Perhaps it might catch even a single sunbeam
And open slightly
In a remembered colour of you.


Irish Province News 55th Year No 3 1980


Fr Cyril Power (1890-1907-1980)

Fr Cyril Power died in the Mater hospital on the 19th March, just a few days before completing his ninetieth year. Of those ninety years he had spent 47 in Clongowes as a student, scholastic and priest. He entered the Society in 1907, doing his noviceship under the famous (or as some would think today, infamous) Fr James Murphy. This Mag Nov frequently said to his novices that he would make life so hard for them in the noviceship that never again for the rest of their lives would they feel anything hard; and he acted on his say. Yet, wonder of wonders, Fr Power used to recall with almost boyish glee the many rather harsh (to modern eyes anyway) penances meted out for trivial mistakes or accidents. The penances were so bizarre - outrageous, we might almost say - that they afforded continual fun to all save the actual recipient. But then he had his turn for a laugh too.
From the noviceship in Tullabeg Fr Power proceeded to University College, Dublin, where his mathematical genius continued to reveal itself; and in 1914 he secured his MSc, winning at the same time a studentship to Cambridge. For two years he taught mathematics in Rathfarnham to his fellow scholastics. From Rathfarnham he went to Stonyhurst to study philosophy. In 1917 he returned to the boys for two years. In 1919 he took up his studentship at Cambridge, studying mathematical physics for two years: he gained a brilliant MA (Cantab). For the next four years he studied theology in Milltown Park, being ordained priest in 1923. Finally he returned to Tullabeg for tertianship (1925-26).
His first appointment as a formed Jesuit was to teach moral theology and canon law in Archbishop Mannix's seminary, Werribee, Australia. From there he was summoned home in 1930 to teach moral theology in Milltown, where he became Rector (1930-38) and a Consultor of the Province (1931-39). From the professor's chair, he was sent to manage the 700-acre farm of Clongowes, which he did very successfully for the next 24 years, teaching senior mathematics all the time and continuing to teach it till a few months before his death.
Such in brief are the bald facts of Fr Cyril's life. All they tell us really is that he was a brilliant mathematician and an able theologian.
But he had even better qualities, the most obvious and praiseworthy being his genuine modesty - humility would be a better word. The writer of this obituary was pretty closely associated with him for over fifty years. Never by word or act did he show the least pride in his brilliant academic career.
He spoke to everyone on level terms, and seemed quite unconscious of his intellectual ability. He never did the heavy, if I may be excused the telling expression. In fact it was difficult to get him to talk seriously at recreation, as he rightly considered that it was not the time for treating of serious topics. He was an inveterate leg puller, and seemed to take life lightly, seeing the funny side of most people and things. The possession of these qualities made him, as one would expect, a pleasant companion and an enemy of pessimism and gloom.
Of course, behind all this lighter side of Fr Cyril there was the man of solid faith and simple piety (his great devotion was to the rosary). Being a very balanced and common sense person, he was to a great extent free from prejudice, and in Milltown Park, as rector of eighty scholastics of ten or twelve nationalities, was noted for his just, equal treatment of all.
As a professor he worked a perpetual miracle every day by being extremely clear in the worst of Latin. He wasn't a Latin scholar. Though his clear and quick mind made him shine in the exact sciences, he was no linguist. But it was as a teacher of mathematics that he really found his métier. He was a patient and understanding master, being ready to repeat again and again the explanation of a problem till all his pupils understood. No wonder he was liked and admired by his boys. Yes! we in Clongowes have lost in him a well beloved member of our dwindling community, and the Province has lost one to whom it owes much.

Mahony, Jerome, 1889-1956, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/239
  • Person
  • 30 September 1889-05 March 1956

Born: 30 September 1889, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1907, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1922, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, Sacred Heart College, Limerick
Died: 05 March 1956, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1914 at Valkenburg Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Clongowes student then a year in France before entry. He was studying French in Lille for a year to prepre for his father’s business, then he entered.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 31st Year No 2 1956

Obituary :

Fr Jerome Mahony 1890-1956

Fr. Jerome Mahony, S.J., died almost suddenly, after an attack of cerebral haemorrhage, in St. Mary's, Emo, on March 5th. He was born in Dublin 66 years ago and educated at the Marist College, Leeson Street, and at Clongowes Wood. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1907 at St. Stanislaus' College, Tullamore, and later studied philosophy at Valkenburg, Holland, and at Stony hurst College, Lancashire.
On his return to Ireland, Fr. Mahony taught in Clongowes Wood and Mungret College, Limerick, for six years preceding his theological studies at Milltown Park, Dublin, where he was ordained priest in 1922. He joined the teaching staff of the College of the Sacred Heart, Limerick, before beginning his long association with Mungret College in 1928.
Fr. Mahony was appointed Rector of the Jesuit Novitiate, Emo, in 1945. On relinquishing this post, he remained at St. Mary's as Latin professor to the novices and spiritual director of the community.
Fr. Mahony served the Society loyally and well in his many years of teaching, both in the colleges and the novitiate; and his four volumes of A History of the Catholic Church for Schools are a well-thumbed testimony to his thoroughness and zeal. His will be a household name in the school-world for years to come. (One of his own favourite stories was that of hearing one small boy in Clongowes say to another as he passed : “There's Hart."). In more ambitious vein is his unpublished study of some points in St. John's Gospel; and he also wrote a number of scriptural and liturgical pamphlets for the Messenger Office.
But his most useful service to the Society of Jesus was that which he constantly and edifyingly gave within our own communities. Without parade or pretension he was an excellent religious. His charity and kindliness was never-failing. He was at the disposal, not merely of his superiors, but of everyone. A dull supply, a manuscript to be typed, a boring visitor to be shown round, an untimely confession to be heard - these and a hundred such jobs seemed to fall as by right to the lot of Fr. Jerome. He was indeed, ad omnia. And then he turned up at recreation hour to liven his brethren with quip and comment and an amazingly varied repertoire of stories. In this alone he is a sore loss to the little community where the last happy decade of his life was spent.
For those who knew Jerome Mahony at all intimately his unaffected humility impressed even more than his charity. And that says much. The third degree of humility was no mere theory for him, a thing that he had marked read on some far-away October day of the Long Retreat. It seemed to be something. always unobtrusively - almost humorously - present. On occasions where a lesser man of greater natural talents might have sulked and, so doing, ruined himself and them, Fr. Jerome, accepting that he should be esteemed and accounted as one less wise, grew in the disconcerting wisdom of the saints.
Up to the day of his death he was at work on a new Menology for the Irish province. Whoever finishes this task might well find a place for him as an example of the man, so valuable in any group, who shirking no task however unpleasant or obscure, desires only to be of help.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Jerome Mahony SJ 1890-1956
“Up to the day of his death, Fr Jerome Mahony was working on a new Menology for the Irish Province. Whoever finished this task might well find a place for him as an example of a man, so valuable in any group, who, shirking no task, however unpleasant, desired only to be of help”. So wrote the obituarist of Fr Mahony. The prompting was unnecessary. Fr Jerome, by his cheerful, edifying and saintly life, easily merits a high place in these records.

He was born in Dublin in 1890, educated at Clongowes, entering the Society in1907.

He was a thorough Jesuit, giving of his best in the classroom for years on end, ever ready to shoulder unpleasant tasks that others might excuse themselves from, and yet not making himself out as a martyr for the community. In fact he was an ideal community man, every ready with a humorous story and witty retort, with a wit that had to barb to it.

He was an author of the History of the Catholic Church for use in schools, and left behind an unpublished study of St John’s Gospel together with numerous pamphlets of the “Messenger Office”.

In 1945 he was appointed Rector of Emo Park, where he died quite suddenly on March 5th 1956.

Hurley, Thomas, 1890-1976, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/188
  • Person
  • 20 January 1890-13 October 1976

Born: 20 January 1890, Drimoleague, County Cork
Entered: 07 September 1907, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1922, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 13 October 1976, St Camillus Hospital, Limerick

Part of the Sacred Heart, The Crescent, Limerick community at the time of death

“Vita Functi” in HIB Catalogue 1978 says RIP date is 15/10, but this is a typo and should be 13/10.

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
After some Jesuit studies in Ireland, Thomas Hurley sailed for Australia in 1916 and joined the Xavier College staff, teaching public exam students and taking senior debating. He was rowing master, 1918-20. After final vows in 1927 he spent most of his life teaching in various schools.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 52nd Year No 2 1977

Obituary :
Fr Thomas Hurley (1890-1976)
On October 13th 1976, at St. Camillus Hospital, Limerick, died Fr Thomas Hurley, SJ
Born on January 20th 1890 at Drimoleague, Co. Cork, he completed his primary education in the local National School, and then went to Clongowes. From there, on September 7th, 1907 he entered the Noviceship at Tullabeg. On completing his Noviceship, he began his Juniorate Studies in the same place - passing to the other side of the Refectory from that of the novices to take his place among his fellow Juniors. From Tullabeg he went to Milltown Park, from where he went for two years to UCD., studying Science. He was then sent to North Brabant for his Philosophy, (1912-1214), after which he began teaching in Belvedere College, Dublin. From 1915 to 1920 he was teaching in St. Xavier's, Melbourne from which he returned to Milltown Park for Theology, and was ordained on August 15th 1922. After Theology, he went to Ghent, Belgium, for his Tertianship: 1924-1925,
He began to lecture in Philosophy and to teach Mathematics in Mungret College in 1925, from where he went to the Crescent in 1928 to teach Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics. His teaching career continued when he went to Clongowes in 1933, and when he returned to the Crescent in 1939. This teaching career came to a halt in 1950 when he began a three year period as “Operarius” in the Crescent Church, Limerick.
Concerning Father Hurley’s teaching life, the following words from the Limerick Papers on the occasion of his death reveal something of his dedication as a teacher:
“Father Hurley was a man of great energy and was totally engaged in a variety of activities during his long life. Apart from his very lengthy and successful career as a teacher and missioner, he took a very keen interest in the Irish Language, and for many years brought groups of boys on Summer Courses to Irish Colleges. He wrote some CTS Pamphlets, and also the life of Father Michael Browne, SJ - a Limerick man. For a number of years he took a very keen and practical interest in the activities of the Irish Red Cross Society. He was always available for occasional sermons and Church supply work at short notice”.
During some of his teaching years in the Crescent, Fr. Hurley had, as his Prefect of Studies, Father Edward Andrews, now in Galway. Fr Andrews says: “He was a very painstaking teacher, and I could always rely on good results from his exam classes ... He joined our Community again when I was Rector. He was then only on Church work, and preached very good sermons. Of course, like all of us, he had his critics."
In 1953 Fr Tom Hurley was appointed to the Jesuit Mission and Retreat Staff in Tullabeg, where he remained until 1962. In that year he returned to pastoral work in the Crescent Church, Limerick, and remained at this work until 1976, although failing health interrupted this work very much during about five years before his death.
One who knew Fr Tom Hurley well as a missioner - Fr Willie Hogan, now in the Crescent - writes:
“Father Hurley came on the Mission Staff in 1953 when in his 64th year. While this was a very late beginning in a missioner's work and hence more onerous than for a younger person, Fr Hurley put his heart and soul into it. While not spectacular he was a solidly good missioner, hard-working and devoted to the Confessional. He got on well with the Parochial Clergy, which is a very important thing in the running of a Parish Mission. He was considerate for those working with him, and was ready to entertain and consider suggestions made for the general good of the mission in hand. I lived with him from 1971 onwards in the Crescent. By that time he had failed greatly and lived very much to himself. If I could do so, it is not the period of his life about which I should care to write much: senility is seldom flattering”.
Father Coyne, although somewhat senior in the Society to Father Tom Hurley, remembers that, at least among his contemporaries he was known as “Timothy Tom” - a name given him in the noviceship “as if in an inspired moment by a second-year novice who died recently in Australia. Fr Coyne says also that Fr. Hurley “showed little inclination for games throughout life; a pointer, perhaps, in this direction was the post he held as a Clongowes student in the boys' reading room, where he functioned as assistant librarian, and spent leisure hours in reading”.
In Obituary Notices critics rarely raise a voice, because, I suppose, of an excessive fidelity to the old rule: “de mortuis nil nisi bonum”. Yet if charitable care is made in making them, criticisms may well reveal nothing more than unfortunate consequences of virtues exercised without stint. It is not, for example, really so terrible a fault if an ever helpful and over-working teacher or Church-man surrenders wearily to a chair on returning to his room rather than to the energetic arranging neatly and in order of textbooks, “home-work”, sermon notes, reference books, letters, etc. God understands us, and will take heed and reward the good work that was done, and pay little attention - we can feel sure - to harmless human failings that were revealed in the doing of it.

McCarthy, Robert, 1889-1953, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1693
  • Person
  • 09 June 1889-14 November 1953

Born: 09 June 1889, Sydney, Australia
Entered: 11 October 1911, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB) / St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 14 November 1953, St Ignatius, Richmond, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1919 at St Aloysius, Jersey, Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1925 at Drongen, Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Robert McCarthy's father was a prosperous pharmacist, and Robert was educated at Riverview 1904-07. His father strongly opposed his joining the Society in 1908. Three years later Robert fell dangerously ill and was pronounced to be dying. He was given the vows of the Society on his deathbed, and then recovered.
Later, he entered the Society at Tullabeg, 11 October 1911, and did a brilliant mathematics and science course at the University of Dublin, 1913-18, completing a MSc with first class
honors. Philosophy studies were at at Jersey, Theology at Milltown Park, 1920-24, and tertianship at Tronchiennes.
McCarthy returned to Riverview to teach from 1925-27 was assistant editor of “Our Alma Mater”, and assisted Pigot in the observatory The two men were temperamentally incompatible - McCarthy being a loud-voiced, almost boisterous man boiling over with nervous energy. This helped him to be a very effective teacher, especially of mathematics and physics, but he could not work with Pigot. However, he did get on well with almost everyone.
He taught at St Patrick's College, 1927-30, and Xavier College, 1930-49. His final work was in the parish of Richmond, 1950-53, where he worked especially with the poor and was chaplain to the local branch of the St Vincent de Paul Society. As a retreat-giver and spiritual director, McCarthy was said to be especially good with girls, and this gave rise to some unkind remarks by the sort of people who would argue to the death against the ordination of women. However, he is chiefly remembered as a vigorous and successful teacher of boys. He suffered from heart disease for about fifteen years, but that did not prevent him from working hard.

Note from Edward Pigot Entry
His extremely high standards of scientific accuracy and integrity made it difficult for him to find an assistant he could work with, or who could work with him. George Downey, Robert McCarthy, and Wilfred Ryan, all failed to satisfy. However, when he met the young scholastic Daniel O'Connell he found a man after his own heart. When he found death approaching he was afraid, not of death, but because O’Connell was still only a theologian and not ready to take over the observatory. Happily, the Irish province was willing to release his other great friend, William O'Leary to fill the gap.

Conlon, Vincent, 1890-1959, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1086
  • Person
  • 17 May 1890-14 November 1959

Born: 17 May 1890, Maclean, NSW, Australia
Entered: 07 September 1910, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 14 November 1959, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Brother of Felix Colon - RIP 1933

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1918 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1921 at Hastings, Sussex, England (LUGD) studying
by 1925 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
Brother of Felix Colon - RIP 1933

His early education, along with his three brothers was at St Ignatius College Riverview, where he was a good student and sportsman. He was a member of the First XV 19071909, and was a champion athlete 1908-1909. He was also prefect of the Sodality for two years and was recognised as a boy of seep spirituality and strength of character.

1910-1912 He was sent to St Stanislaus College Tullabeg for his Novitiate
1912-1913 He was sent to Milltown Park for a Juniorate to prepare for University exams
1913-1917 He was sent to Belvedere College Dublin for Regency
1917-1920 He was again at Milltown Park and Stonyhurst for Philosophy
1920-1924 He was sent to Hastings for Theology
1924-1925 He made Tertianship at Drongen
1926-1937 He began a long association with St Ignatius College Riverview where he was at various times, Teacher, Second Division Prefect, Editor of “Our Alma Mater”, assistant Editor of the Jesuit Directory, Rowing Master, First Division Prefect (1927-1929 and 1932-1937 and 1939), and Third Division Prefect (1930-1931)
1938-1940 He was sent to St Patrick’s College Melbourne
1941 He was sent to Burke Hall as headmaster (1941-1942), Prefect of Studies (1943-1947) and Prefect of games and discipline (1949-1957. He was also a teacher of Latin and Mathematics.

He was a gentle quiet man, like his brother Felix, good with boys and at games. He was a diligent teacher, especially of younger boys. He paid great attention to detail. His classroom always had to be clean, boys were appointed to take class attendance, and homework was corrected with the greatest care. He loved cricket. He rolled and cut cricket creases until they looked like billiard tables, and he coached his teams with infinite patience.
He took ill one evening, went to the hospital and died the next day - all within one weekend.

Note from Richard Comerford Entry :
1967 The Rector of St Aloysius, Vincent Conlon finally succeeded in gaining his return to the College, and when he did he taught Religion, Geography and elementary Science.

McArdle, Henry, 1888-1940, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1684
  • Person
  • 06 June 1888-07 November 1940

Born: 06 June 1888, Wellington, New Zealand
Entered: 01 June 1908, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1923, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, Xavier College Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 07 November 1940, St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to AsL : 05 April 1931

by 1913 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1915 at Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands (TOLO) studying
by 1917 in Australia - Regency
by 1925 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Henry McArdle was educated at Riverview, 1905-07, and was a member of the rugby XV and of the winning “Four” in rowing at the GPS regatta, a time before the introduction of “Eights” into rowing. He was also a good actor and musician, and always retained his interest in drama, music and rowing. In 1938 the Riverview Old Boys presented him with a skiff, but by that time was not able to make much use of it. He was a rather shy and gentle man, but could be severe in the classroom where he mainly taught mathematics.
He entered the Society at Tullabeg, 1 June 1908, and after his juniorate taught at Belvedere College for a few years before philosophy studies at Stonyhurst and Gemert, France, 1912-15. Then he taught at Riverview, 1915-20, and returned to Milltown Park, Dublin, 1920-24, for theology Tertianship was at Tronchiennes, 1924-25.
He taught at St Aloysius' College, Milsons Point, 1925-29, did parish duties at Richmond, 1930-31, and returned to teaching at St Patrick's College, 1931-37. Here be made a name for himself with musical entertainment. He was a hard master to satisfy, for months rehearsals continued until every note was true. Of particular note were productions of Gilbert and Sullivan's HMS Pinafore and The Pirates. His taste for music was exceptional, he played the violin well, and was gifted with a rich tenor voice. Each year he took leading parts in light operas, which was good preparation for his work at St Patrick's College.
McArdle must have overstrained himself at St Patrick's College, as he sustained a bad breakdown in 1938 and returned to New Zealand for a rest, but he never properly recovered. He retuned to Riverview for his last few years, working in the observatory. Despite declining health, he was always kind and gracious to those he lived with, and had unswerving loyalty to his friends.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 16th Year No 1 1941
Obituary :
Fr. Henry McArdle
1888 Born 6th June
1988 Entered. Tullabeg 1st June
1909 Tullabeg, Novice
1910 Tullabeg, Junior
1911 Belvedere Doc
1912 Stonyhunt Phil. an. l
1913 Stonyhunt Phil. an. 2
1914 Gemert (Holland) Phil. an. 3
1915 In itinere (to Australia)
1916-19 Riverview, Doc
1920-23 Milltown Theol
1924 Louvain Tertian
1925 Australia (Recens)
1928 Australia, Milson’s Point, Oper., Doc. an. 8 mag
1927-28 Australia, Milson’s Point, Paeef. stud. Cons. dom
1929-30 Australia, Richmond Minister, Oper. Cons. dom
1931 Australia, Richmond Minister, Oper. Cons. dom. Proc. dom.
1932-34 Australia, St. Patrick's College, Proc. dom. Doc. an 13 Mag., Conf. alum
1935-37 Australia, St. Patrick's College, Doc. an. 16 Mag, Conf. dom and alum, Praef. od
1938 Australia, Extra domos
1939-40 Australia, Riverview, Doc. an. 18 Mag Conf. dom.

Fr. H. McArdle died in Melbourne, Nov. 6, 1940. RIP

Conlon, Felix, 1888-1933, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1085
  • Person
  • 22 January 1888-19 January 1933

Born: 22 January 1888, Maclean, NSW, Australia
Entered: 08 June 1907, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1922, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, Xavier College Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 19 January 1933, Avoca Beach, Gosford, NSW, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the Loyola College, Greenwich, Sydney, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931
Older Brother of Vincent Colon - RIP 1959
by 1913 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1915 at Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands (TOLO) studying
by 1917 in Australia - Regency
by 1925 at Paray-le-Monial France (LUGD) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
Brother of Vincent Colon - RIP 1959

His early education, along with his three brothers was at St Ignatius College Riverview, where he was a good student, enthusiastic about sport and Prefect of the BVM Sodality. He showed the qualities of all-unconscious candour and singleness of purpose. he had a bright personality and was placid.

1907-1909 He was sent to St Stanislaus College Tullabeg for his Noviceship under James Murphy and Michael Browne.
1909-1912 He was sent to Milltown Park Dublin for his Juniorate
1912-1915 he was sent for Philosophy to Leuven and Kasteel Gemert
1916-1920 He was back in Australia for Regency, firstly at Xavier College (1916-1917) where he was involved with discipline, rowing and the choir, and then to St Ignatius College Riverview (1917-1920), where he was Third Division Prefect, editor of “Alma Mater” and Prefect of Debating
1920-1924 He returned to Milltown Park Dublin for Theology and was Ordained after two years
1924-1925 he made Tertianship at Paray-le-Monial, France
1926-1932 He returned to Australia at Xavier College Kew, where he taught French and History and was also involved in Prefecting and Rowing. He was rowing master when Xavier College won the Head of the River for the first and second times in 1928 and 1929.
1933 he was sent to Loyola Greenwich as Socius to the Novice Master. It was during this year that he drowned while trying to save the life of a boy on Villa on the New South Wales north coast. He was posthumously awarded the “Meritorious Award” in Silver by the “Life Savig Association of Australia”.

He was a small, quiet, shy, good humoured and very gentlemanly man, somewhat scrupulously inclined, but cheerfully dedicated to the task in hand. He was an extremely painstaking teacher, a very edifying man, strongly a spiritual and much loved by those who knew him

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 8th Year No 2 1933
Obituary :
Father Felix Conlon
The news from Australia announcing the death of Father Felix Conlon came as a painful surprise to all in this Province who were acquainted with him, and knew his robust health. Not even when we write this - three weeks later - has any letter arrived giving an indication of illness.
Born in New South Wales on 22nd January, I888, Father Conlon was educated at Riverview, and joined the Society at Tullabeg in 1907. Like his three years of juniorate, which were spent in Tullabeg and Milltown, his philosophy was also divided between two houses - Louvain and Gemert. On his return to Australia in 1915, he spent a little over a year at Kew, where he was able to put to advantage the knowledge of French that he had gained during philosophy. At Riverview from 1917 to 1919 to classwork and the editorship of the “Alma Mater”, he had to add the care of a division. The success of his Rugby teams and his glowing accounts of their matches in the division-prefects' journal testify to his interest and enthusiasm. After theology at Milltown and tertianship at Paray-le-Monial, Father Conlon again returned to Australia where from 1925 to last year he was stationed at Kew. Here again he was “doc”, teaching classics and French at one time or another in nearly every class in the school.. He was also prefect in charge of the boats. In this capacity he had the satisfaction of seeing his labours crowned with success when the Xavier crew - after twenty-two years of vain. effort - was for the first time champion among the Melbourne schools. In July of last year he was appointed socius to the Master of Novices.
Father Conlon died on the 20th January, just two days before his forty-fifth birthday. Though not a student by nature, Father Conlon had passed through the long years of study and teaching with the serenity and cheerfulness that characterised him. It was these traits, too, that always gained him a welcome in a community. When he was superior of a party travelling to Australia and, later, superior of the Kew villa for five years in succession, it was again his imperturbable good humour, joined with an unaffected enthusiasm in the excursions and other forms of recreation., that made him so highly appreciated by those about him. Seculars, too, who came in contact with him, experienced from this easy natural good humour an attraction towards. him. He will be followed by the prayers of the many friends who have been won to him in this way, especially of his friends in the Society, who, often unconscious of the fact at the time, owed to him many an hour made bright and fleeting.
It was only on the last day of February that the details of Father F. Conlon's death arrived. He lost his life in a heroic effort to save a young lad who was drowning. In order to reach the poor boy Father Conlon, Mr. B. O'Brien, S.J., and a gentleman named Miller, faced a wild sea in a small boat. The boat was soon capsized. Mr. O'Brien and Mr. Miller managed to reach the shore, but Father Conlon, a poor swimmer, was never again seen alive, May he rest in peace. Through the exertions of Father Loughnan, Rector of Riverview, assisted by a number of the Riverview Community and others, the boy was saved. They managed to get a life-line out to him, and then, in. spite of great difficulties, and only after a long struggle, they succeeded in bringing him to land.

Coyne, John J, 1889-1978, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/42
  • Person
  • 28 April 1889-17 March 1978

Born: 28 April 1889, Dunmore, County Galway
Entered: 07 September 1906, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1922, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1926, Chies del Gesù, Rome, Italy
Died: 17 March 1978, Milltown Park, Dublin - Zambiae Province (ZAM)

Transcribed : HIB to ZAM 03 December 1969

Unlce of Jimmy McPolin - RIP 2005

Early education at Christian Brothers College Cork and Clongowes Wood College SJ
Studied for an MA in Classics at UCD and awarded a Studentship in 1912-1913

by 1914 at Innsbruck Austria (ASR-HUN) studying
by 1919 at Nowy Sącz Collège, Poland (GALI) studying
by 1925 at Baexem, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) making Tertianship
by 1927 at Rome Italy (ROM) Socius English Assistant (Substitute English Assistant)
by 1966 at Loyola Lusaka (POL Mi) Diocesan Archivist

◆ Companions in Mission1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Fr John Coyne was born in Dromore, Co Galway, Ireland on 28th April 1889, where both his father and mother were teachers. Within a couple of years, his father became an inspector of schools and as a young inspector he was kept on the move: after a period in Dublin he was posted to Tralee, then to Cavan and then on to Cork in 1902. After three years with the Christian Brothers in Cork, John came to Clongowes in 1905.

He entered the Society in Tullabeg on the 7th September 1906. After vows, he attended the university taking a classics degree, also taking an M.A. in 1912. He won a traveling scholarship and was posted to Innsbruck in Austria. Later he moved to Vienna as the First World War had broken out. Then he went on to Poland for a year to Nowy Sacz to prepare for his final philosophical examination. Returning to Ireland, he completed his studies and was ordained priest on 15 August 1922.

Assigned to Rome after tertianship, he became substitute secretary to the English Assistant from 1925 to 1929. Fr Wladimir Ledochowski, the General of the Jesuits, told him that he had learned as much in the Curia as he was likely to learn and that he was sending him back to Ireland to become rector of Belvedere College in Dublin.

He was master of novices from 1931 to 1934. One of his novices said of him later, "I think it would not be unfair to describe Fr John as a Christian stoic rather than as a Christian humanist".

Then came a long period of 24 years (1935 to 1959) as socius to the provincial, not just to one Provincial but to four of them – Frs L Kieran, J R Mac Mahon, T Byrne and L O’Grady (who for reasons of health and temperament 'left Province decisions rest far too much on his socius, Fr John'). He worked for a few years in Gardiner Street Church after being socius.

In 1964 at the age of 75, he accepted an invitation of the Polish Archbishop Kozlowiecki of Lusaka to come and set the diocesan archives in order. Though his provincial suggested a stay of six months, Fr John spent about 8 years in Zambia.

Returning to Ireland, he spent a lot of time translating works of German into English. He was prevailed upon to write his memoirs. 'Memoirs of a Jesuit priest 1906 to 1977: Grafted on the Olive Tree’. He died a year after this on 17 March 1978 in Dublin.

Of Fr Coyne’s time in Zambia, Fr Max Prokoph writes:
‘In spite of his age, he tried to make himself useful in every way possible. For a man who had a finger in every pie in his home province for so many years, it was quite remarkable that he never tried to interfere in the province of his adoption, but spent his time in all sorts of projects for which a younger person would neither have the time nor the inclination. Having put the archives of the Lusaka Archdiocese in order and separated what belonged to the newly erected diocese of Monze (1962). He got down to gathering material for a history of the mission in the days of the Zambesi Mission. Since there was only one full-time priest available for the parish of St Ignatius (Fr Des 0’Loghlen) he gave a hand wherever he could, in the confessional, extra Masses, keeping the parish registers and not least by regular systematic parish visiting, house by house, as far as he could get on foot, perhaps the most systematic visiting the neighbourhood ever had. Quite a few were brought back to the church’.

Fr Michael Moloney writes:
‘Fr Coyne took a very keen interest in what Jesuits had done in Zambia since the coming of Frs Moreau and Torrend for whom he had a deep admiration. Admiration for people who did "great things for Christ" was a permanent attitude of his. His standard for a Jesuit was that he should be "a saint, a scholar and a gentleman" and he clearly tried to exemplify that in his own life. He was a kindly man yet at the same time a puzzle to many. Many wondered what "the real John Coyne was like" because externally he seemed to be set in a conventional spiritual mould and to be rather formal in much of his behaviour, so much so that one cannot escape the conclusion that he was a man with a conflict between his personality traits and what he considered Jesuit spirituality demanded of him. In Zambia he was faithful to his afternoon stroll during which he would meet people and through which he made some friends whose hospitality he was pleased to accept".

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

Irish Province News 34th Year No 4 1959

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

Irish Province News 53rd Year No 3 1978

Obituary :

Fr John Coyne (1889-1978)

Father John Coyne was born in Dunmore, Co. Galway on 28 April 1889 where both his father and mother were teaching. Within a couple of years his father became an inspector of schools, and as a young inspector he was kept on the move: after a brief spell in Dublin he was posted to Tralee, then Cavan and then in 1902 to Cork. After three years with the Christian Brothers on Patrick’s Hill, John came to Clongowes in 1905. He used to say that he felt the first feeble stirrings of vocation while in St Patrick’s College, Cavan, but that the call was peremptory one night in his cubicle in Clongowes when he felt “visited” by an overpowering grace of God: “a wave of deep peace and brightest light flooded my soul to its deepest”.
Two aspects of his youth will surprise those of us who came to know him only after his curial training in Rome: his mother whose parents were English found her favourite reading in John Mitchell's “Jail Journal”; secondly one of the greatest disappointments of his youth was in losing the Junior Munster Final, in which he played as a forward, to Presentation College when at the last moment a sturdy Presentation full-back dropped a goal from half-way which soared between the posts. That he took exhibitions, medals and prizes in his stride is what one expects; his father used to con a chapter of St Luke’s Greek with him every Sunday.
Though only one year in Clongowes he was much in luck to find among his masters four scholastics: Tim Corcoran, Charlie Mulcahy, Patrick Connolly and William O’Keeffe. Among his classmates in that year’s Rhetoric were Paddy McGilligan, Tom Arkins, Tom O'Malley and J B O'Connell, later to become an authority on matters liturgical. Paddy McGilliagan beat him by 25 marks for a medal in Latin.
When he decided to offer himself to the Society the then Provincial, Father John S Conmee, began his chat in this way: “Well John, what makes you want to join the ‘crafties’: that is how Dublin priest speak of us?” Later Father Conmee visited I Rhetoric during Latin class, and John was asked to construe “O fons Bandusiae”.
In the following September eight novices turned up in Tullabeg: among them Hugh Kelly from Westport, John Deevy from Waterford, Henry Johnson from Belfast, Michael Meeney from Limerick, Denis Nerney and John from Cork. In Tullabeg for a year and a half Father James Murphy was his novice master: John liked to tell how Father Murphy, like an Old Testament Prophet, summoned all his novices round his bed, recalling for the last time the great principles of Ignatian spirituality by which his novices were to live. Father Murphy died on 28th March 1908, and his Socius, Fr Tighe took over until Father Michael Browne was appointed in August,
After his first vows on 8 September 1908, he and his fellows moved to another table and wore their birettas. For his first two years he was coached by Fr John Keane and Mr Dan Finn in Tullabeg, going to Dublin only to sit for the Royal University exams. In his third year 86 St Stephen's Green had become the Dublin College of the new National University, so the Juniors moved up to Milltown. His Greek Professor was Father Henry Browne and for Latin Paddy Semple.
He took his MA In 1912: his thesis dealt with Hellenism as a force in Eastern life and thought; he spent most of this year in Trinity Library as facilities in 86 were understandably limited. He spent the Christmas term teaching English and Latin in Belvedere, but early in the new year Father T V Nolan, recently appointed Provincial, sent him back to Milltown to prepare himself for the travelling studentship in Classics coming up in the following September.
John won the studentship and was posted to Innsbruck. By a stroke of luck he met on the Holyhead boat the extern examiner for his thesis and his oral, Professor J S Reid, a notable Ciceronian scholar; generously the Professor gave him a letter of introduction to Professor Rudolf von Scala in Innsbruck, chief expert on Polybius, the Greek historian of Rome. Scala gave him a warm welcome, the run of his library and welcome to his lectures. With disappointment on John’s part he suggested as the subject of his Bodenpreise (Ground Rents). As sources for his thesis in Innsbruck were thin, John moved to Munich after Christmas where there was a flourishing centre for the study of papyri under the direction of an Austrian named Wenger. Occasionally Wenger invited small groups to his home for a beer evening where his wife proved a charming hostess. Here he used to meet from time to time Hermann Grisar, then the authority on Luther, and Peter Lippart.
Summer vacation drew him back to Innsbruck; fortunately he had a fortnight's villa before the war broke out. The Jesuits undertook care of the wounded, beginning to trickle back from the Serbian front. With a crash course from a Viennese doctor, they took over a large building to serve as a hospital. In May 1915 British subjects had to get out of Innsbruck as Italy had entered the war and was planning to force the Brenner Pass. Three Irish Jesuits Fr Tim Halpin, recently ordained, John and Dan Finn made their way to Vienna.
John was drafted to Kalksburg, where he spent three years as a spare tyre: “parratus ad omnia” as he loved to quote to us, novices. One year on returning from Christmas holidays Prince Liechtenstein brought the mumps with him; spreading through the school rapidly some 150 boys were affected. As the Brothers had all been called to the colours, John spent from January to May as a nurse: more serious were one case of scarlatina, one of typhoid, and the most critically ill of all was the Archduke Godfrey of Salsburg down with serious pneumonia. Trying enough as the nursing with its broken nights was, John preferred it to being gallery prefect, sitting in a glass box, regulating traffic, ringing bells or covering a sick or weary prefect’s beat. Sanctions were difficult: no corporal punishment to deter slackers or offenders-only detention or, for the younger boys, putting them in the booby corner. One Pole, called the Black Prince because of his dark features, had been recalled from an English public school and found Kalksburg considerably more to his liking,
His next move was to Poland to finish his philosophy at Nowy Sacz (now Sardac), a town two hours journey south of Cracow. His main task was to prepare for his “de universa”, and in keeping with Jesuit custom, to learn the language of the house of studies in which he lived: this time a Slav language.
On returning from Poland he taught in Clongowes for the year 1919-20, and liked to tell that one of his boys later broke his gavel in a vain attempt to stem Kruschev’s eloquence at UNO in New York - and subsequently became the first Catholic Chancellor of Trinity.
In the Autumn of 1920 he went to Milltown for theology: by a war-time privilege he was ordained at the end of his second year on 15 August 1922. After two more years in theology he went to Exaten in eastern Holland to do his tertianship in a German community (1924-5).
On the status of 1925 he was assigned to study Scripture in Rome but at the last moment he was asked to fill a gap by becoming substitute secretary to the English Assistant, Fr Joseph Welsby, previously Tertian instructor in Tullabeg. For his first year and a half he lived in the German College while the new curia on the Borgo Santo Spirito was being built. He quickly learned the “stylus Curiae” and after three years Fr Wladimir Ledochowski, the General, told him that he had learned as much in the Curia as he was likely to learn and that he was sending him back to Ireland to become Rector of Belvedere.
Fr Martin Maher, a long-time novice master, was beginning to fail and John was appointed to replace him in the Spring of 1931. The present writer entered the novicehsip the following September; we were the only group to have him alone for our master. He was a dedicated Ledochowski man, as indeed was his then Provincial, Fr Larry Kieran, whose contact with Fr General was 99% epistolatry. Fr John had an outstanding devotion to Our Lord, at times over emotional in its expression; eager to tell us that we had not real Ignatian indifference unless we kept one foot in the air; insistent on the 'magis' of the Exercises which meant his novices must be grounded in “agere contra”, and, at least, have a desire to live in the third degree. I think it would not be unfair to describe him as a Christian stoic rather than as a Christian humanist. His war-time experiences had taken a great deal out of him and one sensed the strain. Many of us found it difficult to feel relaxed in our regular visits to him: we waited for an opening as he gazed out the window at Dairy hill and played rather nervously with a paper knife. He found “priming the pump” difficult.
Not that he was inhuman but he didn't believe in showing that side to his novices. He did to his Provincial when he wrote to say that, for days on end, apart form the Community, all he ever saw was the postman and, occasionally, a stray dog. A few months break from Emo towards the end of 1933 didn't help to reduce the tension under which he was living; he was simple and humble enough to ask his Provincial to accept his resignation.
If his first three appointments were each three years long, his next one was to last almost twenty-five years: February 1935 until mid June 1959. Over that span he served as Socius to four Provincials. I think he would like to be described as “idus Achates”; but a Socius in the Society is much more than a secretary; ex officio he is one of the four Province consultors. In Fr Kieran’s reign both he and his Socius were too like-minded. Though Fr Kieran met Fr Ledochowski only once in the General Congregation of 1938, from his appointment as Provincial in 1931 he was an all-out Ledochowski man: “actio in distans non repugnat”. His successor in the difficult war years, Fr John R MacMahon, knew his own mind as did his successor Fr Tommy Byrne who founded three houses and took on commitments in Northern Rhodesia - the Zambia of today. Father Louis O’Grady, for reasons of health and temperament, left Province decisions rest far too much on his Socius, Father John.
On retiring from his unselfish devotion to a typewriter for twenty five years, from letters and forms to Rome, from Collecting informations for fitness for Hong kong or Zambia, for suitability for ordinations, and for government, and, perhaps, most tedious of all, bringing out the annual “Catalogus”, he was posted to Gardiner Street as operarius. Even as Socius pastoral work appealed to him: for years he guided two praesidia of the Legion of Mary, his first experience of it being in Rome when an ecumenical praesidium was formed in the mid-twenties: it didn't last long as the non-Catholics couldn't stomach the rigidity of the Handbook. He struck up a real friendship with Paddy Reynolds, Lord Wicklow's astute partner in Clonmore and Reynolds. Though Paddy had a heart of gold, in language he’d outdo any trooper. As a result John translated a number of German books which, to his delight, Reynolds managed to sell- despite the fact that John had a taste fot the “turgid” German.
Five years later (1964) carrying out what he had taught us in Emo, the “magis” of the Exercises, he accepted the invitation of the Polish Archbishop of Lusaka to set the Mission Archives in order. Though his Provincial, Fr Charlie O'Connor, suggested a stay of six months, John, apart from one furlough, spent almost ten years in Zambia where he wished to leave his bones.
By 1966 a new presbytery had been built adjoining the modern Church of St Ignatius. With his work on the archives completed he joined the Irish parish community, taking on the duties of a curate at the age of 77: baptisms, marriages, pre-marriage courses, keeping the parish registers. As most of the community was working outside the house, he acted as porter, answered the phone, dealt with callers. One of the Community - no great admirer of John in his Socius days - prevailed on him to take a glass of grog every night, and so he learned to relax.
Returning to Zambia in 1969 after a break in Ireland, he was able to spend four days in Greece - from the human point of view the highlight of his life. Less than three years later he had to return to Ireland on stringent medical advice, but he refused to hang up his boots. Between bouts in hospital he continued translation work, was no “laudator temporis acti” but had a warm welcome, a keen interest in the theologians whose régime was so different to what he had experienced when Fr Peter Finlay and Matt Devitt were the stars in his student days (1920-1924).
May the Lord reward him for his enthusiasm and generosity; may he win for his two Jesuit nephews of whom he was so proud, for his three sisters and all the family, abundant grace.
PS. For most of the facts in this notice I have drawn from a sixty-one page typescript which Father John was prevailed upon to write in his last year in Milltown (1977): It is, in the main, Province history with little personal comment and remarkably restrained in passing judgments “discreta caritas”. (RBS).

Power, William, 1887-1937, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/2007
  • Person
  • 07 October 1887-13 December 1937

Born: 07 October 1887, Castletownbere, Co Cork
Entered: 07 June 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 13 December 1937, Crescent College, Limerick

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 13th Year No 2 1938
Obituary :
Brother William Power
1887 Born, Castletownbere, Co. Cork, 7th October
1914 Entered, Tullabeg, 7th .June
1915 Mungret (Coadj. now.) Ad preyed. et dom
1916 Mungret, Ad praed. et dom.
1917-19 Mungret, Ad dom., Cur tricl. Apostol. etc
1920-21 Mungret, Ad dom., Cur tricl. Apostol. etc, Dir fam
1922 Milltown, Cur. tric., Infirm., Ad dom
1923-24 Milltown, Dir fam, Infirm., Cur. pen., Disk
1925 Clongowes, Cur. tric., Ad dom
1926-29 Tullabeg, Ad dom
1930-35 Belvedere, Praef. fam., Cust cell., Vis, med. et exam
1936-37 Crescent Mechan., Ad dom

Br. W. Power died in Limerick, Monday, 13th December, 1937. RIP

The following excellent appreciation of Br. Power is given just as it was received :
It is not easy for one who has known Br, Power for a great many years, in fact since his noviceship, to realise that he is gone that never again we shall hear his loud hearty laugh. For Br Power, when in his best form, could laugh. To most casual acquaintances he was a puzzle as his inherited stammer made his speech at times a trifle difficult to follow. But when one came really to understand the real man it was surprising to discover in him a very deep spiritual strain, and a big grip on the things that mattered He was big in every way, and though most people only knew of his faults, his hot temper and impatient manner, they little suspected that the man before them was of outstanding ability, of exceptionally quick mind which made him impatient of slow thinkers, and, above all, of slow workers. As a worker he was unequalled, as the writer knows, for he worked (or tried to keep up) at his side in several houses. He was not always able to finish, as gruelling bad health a weak heart, stomach trouble of long standing would often lay him low in the midst of some undertaking.
He rarely spoke of his health, and I have known him to suffer torment and yet do two men's work in that state.
In one house he did a great deal of underground or hidden work in the literal sense, as he repaired old cellars, mended drains, old floors, and when these jobs were finished he repaired worn roofs, window ledges, chimney pipes, all of which work contained a great deal of discomfort and risk for one in poor health.
He said his prayers and kept before his mind the important duties of his vocation, and was moreover a big man in the sense that he could be absolutely depended upon as a loyal and self sacrificing friend. He had many true friends amongst the staff who worked under him, and the proof of this is in the fact that they remained with him for so many years.
He never paraded his piety, but to one who knew him it was quite evident. He hasn't left many friends, in the sense of cronies after him, but he has left behind a number who will remember the many kindly turns he did.
We may be sure a great part of his purgatory was endured during life, and that the Master will be merciful to, one who loved Him so well and worked so well for His cause".

Parr, Frederick, 1885-1970, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1966
  • Person
  • 07 December 1885-13 October 1970

Born: 07 December 1885, Newbury, Berkshire, England
Entered: 09 October 1914, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 13 October 1970, St Vincent’s Hospital, Darlinghurst - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Frederick Parr was an Englishman and a convert who was a cabinet maker by trade, and had been a soldier. He migrated to Australia about 1912, lived at Prahran and worked as a carpenter at Xavier College before entering the Society at Loyola College, Greenwich, 9 October 1914. He spent his Jesuit life doing carpentry and domestic duties at Sevenhill, 1917-20 and 1926-28 Riverview, 1920-25, Xavier College, 1925-26 and 1928-49, and Pyrnble, 1950-70.
Besides his trade he was interested in ornithology and kept an aviary for many years at Xavier College and at Canisius College, Pymble. He was a good sportsman at cricket, soccer, billiards, swimming, shooting and boxing, frequently talking about these interests and achievements with the community.
At Riverview he helped coach cricket. He developed arthritis while at Xavier and this became progressively worse over the years. He also had an operation on his leg that left one leg shorter than the other. He used a stick to help him move about.
His workshop at Pymble was full of wonderful bird paintings, which became the source of admiration to many, but especially the local children. Before his final fall and broken leg, he would daily visit St Ives for the evening paper, to find the results of the English soccer, and to have a chat with the local families. In his latter days he showed great faith and trust in his medical advisers. Never was he heard to complain about any condition he was discovered to have. His final days were spent in the Cherrywood Private Hospital, where he was respected for his bright smile and cheerfulness despite much pain.
He was a quiet, polite little man and for years did unobtrusive work. He was always an appreciated member of the community, one of the real lovable characters of the province.

Nerney, Denis S, 1886-1958, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/46
  • Person
  • 26 December 1886-15 August 1958

Born: 26 December 1886, Cork City
Entered: 07 September 1906, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 24 August 1920, St Mary's College, Hastings, England
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, Chiesa del Gesù, Rome Italy
Died: 15 August 1958, Cork City

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

Younger Brother of John - RIP 1962

by 1910 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1912
by 1919 at St Mary’s, Kurseong, West Bengal, India (BELG) studying
by 1920 at Hastings, Sussex, England (LUGD) studying
by 1925 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying
by 1930 at Rome, Italy (ROM) teaching

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Denis Nerney entered the Society at Tullabeg in 1906, and after philosophy at Louvain, 1909-12, arrived in Australia for regency at Xavier College as a teacher and director of debating, 1913- 14. He was moved to Riverview in 1915, teaching, debating, organising the junior boats and was assistant prefect of discipline. After tertianship, Nerney spent the rest of his life teaching theology, firstly at the Gregorian University in Rome, and then at Milltown Park, Dublin.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 34th Year No 1 1959
Obituary :
Fr Denis Nerney (1886-1958)
Fr. Denis Nerney entered the Society in 1906, did his noviceship in Tullabeg and then remained there for one year's juniorate. At this period he already gave evidence of that intellectual interest and scientific precision which characterised his work of later years. He began investigating the history and archaeology of the district around Rahan in order to increase the interest of the weekly walks of the novices and juniors. This work he continued during his tertianship and it resulted in an unpretentious typescript volume which bears the title Notes on the History of the Tullabeg District. This interest in precise and accurate information later led him to compose a masterly account of the sequence of events on the morning of the Milltown Park fire.
In 1909 Fr. Nerney was sent to Louvain for Philosophy. There he came in contact with the early stages of the Thomistic revival which was to lead quite soon to the abandonment by a large part of the Society of many of the traditionally held Suarezian positions. In due course, Fr. Nerney himself was very influential in introducing this type of philosophy into the Irish Province when, with Fr. Canavan, he taught Philosophy at Milltown Park. As a theologian too Fr. Nerney was a convinced Thomist with traces of the influence of Cardinal Billot.
In 1912 Fr. Nerney was sent to Australia, where he taught for six years; two years at Xavier College and four at Riverview. During his period at Riverview he was in charge of the rowing club and the debating society; and for one year was editor of the college annual Alma Mater. He brought back from Australia a keen interest in all kinds of sports and athletics, including Rugby football, This last was in later years eclipsed by his interest in Gaelic games, but it was never completely ousted. He was even known to inform some over-enthusiastic followers of Rugby that he had expert knowledge of both the amateur and professional game and that he was, as far as he was aware, the only Jesuit of the Irish Province who was an officially-recognised referee for championship matches. He always maintained a lively interest in Australia and was particularly kind to Australian scholastics who came to Ireland for their studies.
In September 1915 the following sonnet appeared in Studies over the name D. S. Nerney, S.J.; possibly a juniorate composition, although we have now no way of ascertaining the precise date at which it was written:

And seeing them labouring . . . about the fourth watch of the night He cometh to them walking on the sea. ...

Our life were surely but an idle thing
If there were naught beneath the arch of years
But life and death - a little space of tears
And foolish laughter-a poor winnowing
Snatched from the idle promise of the spring;
If all our hope a cry that no god hears,
And we of the dead past the last compeers
That time from out the blackest night shall bring.
While thus I thought and sorrowed for a space
Where darkness lay like death upon the sea,
A vision came: I knew Him by his face
Of glory: “Stretch thou forth thy hands to Me”,
He said; and Christ was in the place,
The final hope of immortality.

In 1918 Fr. Nerney left Australia in order to begin his theology, the very year in which his brother, Fr. John Nerney, was assigned to the Australian mission. However, he did not reach Europe that year but did his first year's theology in Kurseong, the missionary theologate of the Belgian Province. It was in this period that he formed an opinion which he afterwards expressed in his tract De Deo Uno concerning the extent to which man unaided by revelation does in fact attain to some degree of knowledge of the true God. His observations of what occurred in the pagan shrines of India convinced him that, at least, the ordinary people were not worshipping some vaguely apprehended attribute of God symbolised by their idol but that they were practising pure fetishism, by which they adored the idol itself as though possessed of divine powers.
In 1919 he went to continue his theology in the theologate of the Lyons Province which was then at Hastings. He was ordained there in 1920 and remained there for his third and fourth years' theology. After tertianship in Tullabeg under Fr. T. V. Nolan he was sent to Rome to do a biennium in Theology and in 1926 returned to Milltown as Minister of Philosophers and Professor of Logic and Psychology. The philosophers of those days all retain the most pleasant memories of the kindness and consideration which he always showed in his dealings with them.
In 1930 he was summoned to Rome to teach Dogmatic Theology in the Gregorian University; and he remained there for three years. He made many friends there and also among the staff and students of the Irish College, where he was a frequent visitor. He had been assigned the tract De Sacramentis and did much personal study on the difficult question of the history of the administration of the Sacrament of Penance. He noted with regret that there was no account available of the Penitentiaries of the Irish Church and he always felt that an important contribution would be made by anyone who would undertake research in that neglected field.
In 1933 he returned to Ireland on account of ill health. At this time a decision had been made to bring the Dogma course in Milltown into line with the practice of other Provinces by introducing a separate Apologetics course for the first year and consequently reducing the old four-year cycle of Dogma to a three-year cycle. So Fr. Nerney was assigned to teach De Ecclesia and Fr. Gannon, taken from the short course, to teach De Vera Religione; and Fr. Canavan was brought back from Tullabeg to teach the short course. In 1936 Fr. Nerney was changed to long course Dogma and he remained at that post until his sudden death in 1968. He also acted as Prefect of Studies from 1953 to 1956.
An estimate of Fr. Nerney must be based primarily on his achievements as a Professor of Theology, because this was the principal work which was assigned to him by the Society. Of the value of this work. there can be very little doubt. It is generally accepted that he rendered incalculable service to the faculty in Milltown and so to many hundreds of Jesuits of many Provinces. He was an excellent lecturer; precise and methodical with a masterly command of Latin. He is not known ever to have pronounced a single sentence in English and yet his class invariably followed him with ease and pleasure. His lectures were based on one of his four codices which he followed closely but not slavishly, with the result that, reading a page or so of typescript, one found an accurate summary of his entire lecture. He kept strictly to the scholastic method of presentation and always indicated the difficult points of his position by a series of penetrating objections.
He was much liked as an examiner. He indicated clearly the precise point of a thesis he wished the candidate to treat, listened patiently to his exposition, brought him back over his exposition in order to secure expansion or correction of points which were unsatisfactory and then urged fair but telling objections in strict scholastic form. He always received the candidate's answers without violent reaction, no matter how bad they were; he seemed to be unwilling to influence the other examiners against him, preferring to leave them to form their own judgment on the basis of the evidence he had elicited concerning the state of the candidate's knowledge.
His treatment of scripture texts was a model of method. He always indicated clearly the precise argument he was drawing from the text he had quoted. He may not have had a very great interest in the results of modern scripture scholarship but the positions he adopted were always clearly defined and capable of strong defence. In general, he did not show much interest in patristic theology, although on many points he was extremely well informed, e.g., the early history of the Sacrament of Penance. His favourite amongst the Fathers was St. Ambrose, possibly on account of the connection existing between him and the Celtic church. He was sometimes criticised for over-simplifying theology. This is a permanent difficulty facing a Professor of Theology, viz., how to present a complex problem to a class without plunging into a mass of detail out of all proportion to the importance of the topic in question. If he erred on the side of over-simplification, his error was inspired by consideration for his class and was by no means a confession of ignorance nor a proof of lack of diligence. But it would be a rash conclusion that he did so err. His estimate of what constituted an adequate treatment of a particular subject was based on long years of teaching experience and cannot easily be challenged.
He could perhaps be more justly criticised for giving too much attention to purely scholastic discussions of such topics as the mode of the Real Presence in the Blessed Eucharist or the question of Natura and Persona in the Hypostatic Union. But he held that there was no better way of judging the quality of a theologian than by testing his ability to handle such problems with accuracy and confidence. Fr. Nerney was sometimes accused of marking time, or rather wasting time, in class; and it is true that when he was a little ahead of his timetable he reduced his rate of progress but many of his class found the respite very welcome. Towards the end of his life there were periods in which, due to poor health, his physical and mental vigour were below normal. This happened more frequently than was generally realised. One final point cannot be omitted, viz., his fairness and charity towards those whose opinions he felt he could not share. This was certainly the result of a conscious effort on his part, because it was widely felt that in some matters outside the realm of theology he could be very vehement and not always completely free from prejudice.
Fr. Nerney had many interests outside theology. These included motor engineering and wireless telegraphy; but undoubtedly the greatest of these was things Irish, games, history and language. He took up the serious study of Irish during his period as Professor of Philosophy in Milltown Park. He was a gifted linguist, speaking French and Italian with fluency and accuracy, so it is little wonder that he attained a proficiency in Irish, which was very remarkable in a man who began rather late in life. He spoke Irish with a slightly exaggerated precision of pronunciation and idiom but with genuine fluency and a great wealth of vocabulary. He was particularly interested in turns of phrase which were current in his native County of Cork but he was very observant of variations of pronunciation and idiom occurring in Connacht and Donegal. He prided himself on being able to define the precise locality of the origin of the Irish, spoken by the various announcers on Radio Eireann. For many years he spent part of the summer vacation in one or other of the Gaeltachts. Although he spoke Irish on all possible occasions, he was always most willing to speak English with those who were unable to fall in with his known desire to speak Irish.
The esteem in which Fr. Nerney was held by the Irish Province can be gauged by the number of occasions on which he was elected by provincial congregations to represent the Province in Rome. Hence it was with the most sincere regret that we heard the news of his sad and completely unexpected death. The whole Province owes him a very deep debt of gratitude and extends its sympathy to the surviving members of his family, and particularly to his brother, Fr. John Nerney from whom he had been separated for nearly forty years.

McDonnell, James, 1878-1948, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1699
  • Person
  • 07 June 1878-15 September 1948

Born: 07 June 1878, Bohola, Swinford, Co Mayo
Entered: 07 June 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, Sacred heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 15 September 1948, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly, Co Offaly community at the time of death

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 24th Year No 1 1949
Br. James McDonnell (1878-1914-1948)
Brother McDonnell died in St. Vincent's Hospital very suddenly in the early afternoon of Wednesday, 15th September. He had been some weeks in hospital with prostate trouble, and had had a minor operation on 14th September. He felt well and was in good spirits the next day, but at 1.45 p.m., without warning or struggle, he rendered up his soul to God. He was anointed immediately by the hospital chaplain. The funeral took place to Glasnevin 17th September, after the 10 o'clock Mass, celebrated by his Rector, Fr. Michael Connolly, St. Stanislaus College, Tullamore. The prayers at the grave-side were recited by Fr. Provincial.
Brother James was born at Bohola, Swinford, Co. Mayo, on 7th June, 1878 and was a late vocation, not entering the noviceship till he was well on in the thirties. In fact he received his gown on his 36th birthday, 7th June, 1914. It was the brother of the late Bro. James O'Grady, John Canon O'Grady, P.P. of Bohola who brought him to Dublin and introduced him to the then Provincial, Fr. T. V. Nolan with a view to his admission to the Society.
After leaving school Br. McDonnell worked on his father's farm, but about 1909 went to the United States and was employed in Butler's Chain Stores for two years at the end of which he became a Manager of one of the Stores. While in America he started a correspondence course in Commercial Art, which he continued after his return to Ireland, intending to make of this branch of art a life career. However, Providence had other designs for him. On the last night of a fortnight's mission held in the parish, Canon O'Grady arranged for him to drive the missioner to the station the following morning, and it was as the result of the conversation he had with the priest in question during the drive to the station that James McDonnell decided to join a religious Order.
On the completion of his noviceship Bro. McDonnell was sent to Belvedere College where he remained two years. The following four he spent at Clongowes, and in 1923 he began his long association with Mungret College (1923-25 and 1931-39) where for ten years and more he had charge of the boys' refectory. It was largely due to his kindly ways and neighbourly charity shown John Dillon, a farmer who lived nearby, during his serious illness that the College was left a valuable property which rounded off our farm near the Apostolic School, during the Rectorship of Fr. Edward Dillon. From 1925 to 1929 Bro. James worked at the Crescent College, where he made his final profession on 2nd February, 1925. He was in charge of the domestic staff of Belvedere College during the years 1929 and 1930 and it was at this time he contracted pneumonia from which he barely recovered, thanks to expert nursing in the Mater Hospital. The ten years preceding his death Bro. McDonnell spent in Tullabeg, engaged chiefly in secretariate and printing work in connection with the Ricci Mission Unit and in light work in the garden where he was helper to Bro. Pill. This period of his life was overclouded with ill-health and nervous exhaustion against which he struggled bravely.
Bro. James was a saintly man, very unworldly and mortified, of imperturbable patience, he was like many patient people, of strong and resolute character. Gentle to a fault, affable and sweet of temperament he won the affection and confidence of all who came in contact with him. He was deeply attached to his family relations and took the greatest interest in their spiritual and temporal welfare, and was in turn held in the deepest affection by them. Few of those who lived with Bro. James in the Society were aware of his taste for music and painting. He could play the violin quite well, and he devoted many of his leisure hours as a younger man to the painting of religious pictures. Cultured and refined by temperament and upbringing, he was before all else a model of the virtues which befit the Jesuit Brother : union with God, love of the brethren, self-effacement, anxiety to help the Society to the best of his powers, fidelity and trustworthiness, on which Superiors could ever rely. R.I.P.”

Montague, Thomas, 1888-1972, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/711
  • Person
  • 26 May 1888-10 October 1972

Born: 26 May 1888, Garvaghy, County Tyrone
Entered: 07 September 1908, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1921, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 10 October 1972, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL 05/04/1931

by 1916 at St Aloysius, Jersey, Channel Islands (FRA) studying

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Thomas Montague was educated by the Vincentian Fathers at St Patrick's, Armagh, 1901-08, and entered the Jesuit noviciate at Tullabeg, 7 September 1908. He completed his juniorate at the same place, but ill health forced him to begin regency at Mungret, 1911-15, completed, 1918-19. Philosophy was studied at Jersey, 1915-18, theology at Milltown Park, 1919-23, and tertianship at Tullabeg, 1923-24.
He came to Australia in 1924 and spent 1925-31 at Xavier College, Burke Hall, and was headmaster from 1927. Here he began the Gilbert and Sullivan operas, put the boys into uniform and laid out the grounds, supervising the construction of the main oval and wide shovels and spades building up the banks that surround it.
He spent a year at St Patrick's College, 1934, and except for a further few years at Burke Hall, 1937-40, spent the rest of his life at Xavier College, Barker's Road, teaching mainly mathematics and French. He was prefect of studies in 1932, then minister from 1941-53, choirmaster, 1947-62, and director of the opera for about 25 years until 1968. He continued his work in the grounds and strengthened the banks that surround the chapel and those on the south wing. He frequently had a band of unwilling workers-boys with penals. The punishment took the form of filling up barrows with soil and wheeling them to wherever he wanted them. One of his choirs won a competition in the Melbourne Town Hall and the members took it in turn to carry the trophy up Collins Street around midnight.
Montague retired from teaching in 1969. He was keen on cricket and showed endless patience in teaching small boys how to bat. He coached teams at Xavier, and in one year, the First XI. He supervised the boarders' meals three times a day for over twenty years. He was a hard worker, always willing to substitute for someone else.
His direction of the Gilbert and Sullivan operas at the college were well appreciated by all associated with them. He loved the words, music, dances and stage administration. He was a good musician and knew Gilbert and Sullivan operas well. He taught the dances, and conducted the orchestra. To his opera students he was held in high esteem, even awe. He demanded high standards of the boys, and was a hard taskmaster, but the boys learnt discipline and teamwork as well as music accomplishments. The opera productions were not a lone production. For twenty years, from 1943, Montague had the assistance of the ever efficient and reliable Eldon Hogan as Opera General Manager and Stage Manager.
Basically, Montague was shy and retiring, but could be pleasant in community He was a man of few words. In the classroom he kept boys working, in the dining room he seldom spoke, except about table courtesy, at cricket practice his comments were short and clear. When he was annoyed with boys he needed few words to correct them, usually “nonsense” or “humbug” were quite sufficient to let people know his disapproval. He was certainly well respected. In the community he showed a sense of humour and enjoyed a game of billiards, but his usual terse comments were telling. In his latter years he read much, but never a newspaper, as he considered them a waste of time. Nevertheless, he always wanted to have news of the latest cricket score. He was certainly a powerful presence in the Xavier College community for many years.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 47th Year No 4 1972

The death of Fr Thomas Montague has occurred in Australia, October 10th, RIP

Kelly, Hugh, 1886-1974, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/204
  • Person
  • 16 September 1886-01 November 1974

Born: 16 September 1886, Westport, County Mayo
Entered: 07 September 1906, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1921, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 01 November 1974, Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda, County Louth

Part of St Francis Xavier's community, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin
by 1917 at St Aloysius, Jersey, Channel Islands (FRA) studying

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 49th Year No 4 1974
Obituary :
Fr Hugh Kelly (1886-1974)

The tendency to be egotistical noticeable in some persons who are free from the faintest taint of egotism is a tendency hard to account for - but delightful to watch.
“Anything”, says glorious John Dryden, “though ever so little, which a man speaks of himself in my opinion, is still too much”.
A sound opinion most surely and yet how interesting are the personal touches we find scattered up and down Dryden’s noble prefaces. So with Newman - his dignity, his self-restraint, his taste, are all the greatest stickler for a stiff upper lip and the consumption of your own smoke could desire, and yet the personal note is frequently sounded. He is never afraid to strike it when the perfect harmony that exists between his character and his style demands its sound, and so it has come about that we love what he has written because he wrote it, and we love him who wrote it because of what he has written.
It may need an apology to introduce an obituary with a spate of quotation but the culprit, the writer, recalls the above passage from one of Birrell’s essays on Newman being read out at the Rathfarnham home juniorate class, forty odd years since by Fr H. Kelly, then Master of Juniors. It was a specimen of the felicitous way in which he conveyed or suggested an appreciation of good things and the passage itself, it might occur to one more than merely passingly acquainted with Fr Kelly, might serve as a resumé of his own manner and character. He was one of the most unimposing, unimperious of men; if one happened to gain a point on him - not indeed that he ever had a mind for controversy, other than that of a friendly exchange of opinion, you almost regretted having won.
He was born in Westport, Co Mayo, 16th September 1886. One of six children, four boys - one of whom, Peter, the eldest, as Hugh himself, became a priest and died some years since, Adm of the Cathedral in Tuam - and two sisters who now alone survive : Mother Peter of the Presentation Convent in Tuam, and Mrs Eileen Ryan of Westport: with whom Fr Hugh even in latter years contrived to maintain home associations for a few days annually.
His first schooling was with the Christian Brothers at Westport of whom he retained kindly remembrances and for one of whom, not identifiable at the moment, he possessed something of a veneration. His eldest brother was at Maynooth and according to the custom of the time Hugh, with the priesthood likewise in view, proceeded to St Jarlath's where he excelled in classics gaining first place in Greek in the public exam in his concluding year.
Two years in Maynooth, the story goes that on reading a life of St Ignatius, after thought, he presented himself as a candidate for the Society in 1906 to Fr Conmee the then Provincial; he was accepted and on occasion years later he would expatiate on the journey by sidecar from Tullamore station to Tullabeg “with the fall of the year”.
The fellow novices of his year were men later distinguished in their own right. As they are listed in the catalogue of 1907, in the order of seniority apparently, apart from H Johnson who arrived later, they stand : Hugh Kelly, Deniş Nerney, John Deevy, James Gubbins, John Coyne, Michael Meaney, Michael Fitzgibbon, Stephen Bartley and Henry Johnson. All persevered, five became octogenarians; two, Fr John Coyne who was to become Fr Hugh's intimate friend through life, and Fr Henry Johnson who might have rivalled Fr Coyne in closeness of friendship did not seas divide, still happily survive.
After completing the noviciate Hugh Kelly continued for two years as a junior at Tullabeg. In 1910 he moved to Milltown to attend University College, still in its infancy. In 1912 he secured his BA degree which he later crowned with an MA under the guidance of Fr G O’Neill but with no sabbatical period with which to specialise. His thesis was Newman, already a beloved subject. He taught in Mungret, 1912-17, among other chores undertaking the editorship of the Mungret Annual. Fr Edward Dillon, a contemporary member of the Mungret Community, in his last years delighted to recall the happy relations between himself, a seasoned classical, and the young scholastic who was already dis playing a flair for imparting knowledge and generating enthusiasm among his scholars. One success, at any rate, must be chronicled : Tom Johnson, later Fr Tom, brother of Henry above, gained the Senior Grade Medal for Latin in the public exams under Hugh Kelly's tutelage.
1917 found Hugh at Jersey for philosophy but in middle course the threat of conscription here at home and the consequent peremptory behest of Fr T V Nolan, the Provincial, withdrew all our scholastics from foreign parts and Hugh with the other émigrés concluded the philosophic course at Milltown Park and immediately proceeded to theology in the same domicile. Ordination 1921; tertianship at Tullabeg 1923-24; an intervening year again at Mungret and in 1925 he succeeded Fr Frank Ryan at Rathfarnham as Master of Juniors, Fr D. O’Sullivan has kindly under taken, in his modesty, “to supply lacunae” and we content ourselves with some reference to Fr. Kelly's concluding years (reference extended beyond our first calculation); after completing his Rectorate at Rathfarnham in ‘48 he was engaged as operarius and scriptor at Gardiner Street.
It would be inexcusable to omit mention of the various reviews of books he provided for Studies almost continuously and the numerous full-dress articles in Studies but frequently further afield; he had a keen sense for the propriety of language, and a happiness of expression that induced editors to keep him to the mill. An article on Belloc on one occasion drew from that great man a letter of thanks; this really was easy going, as he immersed himself early in Belloc and Chesterton; his acquaintance with Burke and Boswell and Johnson's Poets was a byword among his pupils. He humorously remarked that he would burn for the number of novels he had “consumed” but he too readily recognised trash to be led into devious ways.
The gravitation to Gardiner Street was only a lull; his term of more active service was not concluded. In 1954 he was impelled into the responsible position, again at Rathfarnham, of Tertian Instructor and retained that demanding post for eight years; once again his kindliness, his diffidence almost, though he had a good grasp of the literature of the Institute and the Spiritual Exercises educed on occasion that smile about enthusiasms to which Fr O’Sullivan, in an earlier context, hereafter refers. When he was relieved of the task ultimately he was beginning to feel older yet for another decade he soldiered on, again at Gardiner Street; his Novena of Grace when in on his eighties evinced the energies of one twenty years younger and his command of appropriate language made the lectures something of a literary treat, Together with being solid spirituality. Practically to the end he retained his concentration and as the various volumes of Newman's letters appeared his satisfaction in perusing them was immense.
However, about a year since even the interest in systematic reading languished; this was a novelty for him and he began to have sleepless nights and cheerless depressing days. His appetite, a healthy one generally, failed and from mere lack of sustenance there was fear of his stumbling and injuring himself. The devotion with which he had served Mother Mary Martin’s Missionaries of Mary practically from their foundation (the absence of any allusion to which, as also to the innumerable retreats given by him through the country and even in Boston, Mass, we apologise for), led to Our Lady of Lourdes' Hospital, Drogheda, run under the Missionaries' auspices, being considered as a place of care in decline. Under the nuns’ and nurses’ devoted attention he survived over a year, remarkably tenacious of life but definitely failing. The end came, graciously, we hope, of the Providence Whom he so loyally served through life, at the dawn of the Feast of All Saints.
The obsequies from Gardiner Street on Monday, November 7th, had something unique in the number who followed the cortège to Glasnevin as if to register their affection rather than mourning for the deceased,

We apologise to Fr D O’Sullivan for delaying so long from presenting his tribute to Fr Kelly, as follows:

I lived with Fr Hugh Kelly for only five years - three years under him in Rathfarnham when he was Minister of Juniors and Prefect of Studies and, after an interval of twelve years, as his Rector in Tullabeg. My Rathfarnham memories of Fr Hugh are of the happiest. Life in community, in spite of our division into “home” and “university” juniors was real and was great fun. Studies were perhaps a little higgledy-piggledy due in part to the amiable eccentricities of our Rector, Fr John Keane. Many scholastics studied hard, bringing home the University honours so much esteemed by him - too much perhaps; others studied less. But, almost all, after a somewhat Cistercian noviceship gradually found their Jesuit feet-even if in startlingly variform ways.
The process, luckily, was to a great extent unconscious. The three years with Fr Hugh as Prefect of Studies were unashamedly liberal and cultural, for he was a man of culture though I doubt that he ever knew the word could be used so cynically and pejoratively as it nowadays is. He taught us by his example and the sincerity of his observance that rules could be liberating: and, more formally, that the liberal arts were liberalising. Science was a puzzle to him; but in English literature particularly he was an admirable tutor. We smiled a little at his enthusiasms but, till our dying day, we shall be marked by them. Newman came alive for us: and Fr Hugh took care that when Belloc and Chesterton came to Dublin we heard them and saw our household gods in the flesh.
I was not to meet him again until after Tertianship. I did not look forward to the meeting : he had been removed abruptly and, to the general mind of the Province, unfairly from the Rectorship of Tullabeg and I had the unpleasant task of replacing him. I need have had no fears. Never once was there the slightest disruption of loyalty and friendship : Hugh Kelly was a man of the Exercises. He practised the third degree - unostentatiously - as befitted his temperament and character. His obedience had also a quality of the near-heroic, He was, by inclination and by training, a man of letters : yet he served some fourteen years on the metaphysical treadmill, filling as well the tasks of Rector and Prefect of Studies. He was reckoned adequate as a professor and he worked conscientiously at the various branches of philosophy that fell to his lot: but few scholastics found him inspiring.
As a man they liked and admired him and he was a welcome companion on their weekly villa-walks when they enjoyed his conversation and he theirs. In community life in general he displayed the same Pauline “courtesy”: and in recreation he was as good a listener as he was a conversationalist, One perhaps - as often with men of his mould - took his good qualities for granted. I know that when to the unselfish delight of all-he was, after only two years, chosen to be Rector of Rathfarnham, I realised how much his presence in the Tullabeg community had been a quiet force for humane and harmonious living.

Loughnan, Louis G, 1889-1951, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1594
  • Person
  • 06 April 1889-16 July 1951

Born: 06 April 1889, Christchurch, New Zealand
Entered: 17 June 1907, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1921, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 16 July 1951, St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Younger brother of Basil Loughnan - RIP 1967

by 1912 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1913 in Australia - Regency

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Louis Loughnan was the brother of Basil and educated at Christchurch and Riverview. He entered the ]esuit noviciate, 17 Lune 1907, at Tullabeg, Dublin. His philosophy studies were at Stonyhurst, England, and theology at Milltown Park, Dublin.
He was ordained in 1922, and returned to Australia in 1924, teaching first at Riverview, then at Xavier, 1926-31, during which time he was prefect of studies. He was rector of Riverview, 1931-35. It was at this time that he received the Certificate of Merit from the Surf Life Saving Association of Australia for gallant efforts to rescue two youths from drowning in the surf at Avoca. He was prefect of studies at St Patrick's College, 1935, and later rector, 1943-1948. He returned to Riverview in 1948 and taught there until his death.
Loughnan was well liked by Jesuits, a thorough gentleman, and a great enthusiast, with a friendly and breezy manner. These qualities appealed especially to the young. He enjoyed their company and was the centre of fun. He was recognised as someone who would tackle any task, no matter how difficult. He was a good teacher, with his own methods of teaching Latin and drawing, as well as making relief maps. He was painstaking to a degree. He had bad luck during his term as rector of Riverview. It was the period of the Depression. He had a difficult community and had two bad accidents that severely affected his health.
However, he was experienced as a very successful rector and prefect of studies at St Patrick's College. All appreciated his thoroughness and enthusiasm, and his cheerful dealings with boys. He never spared himself with classroom teaching. He went to the Melbourne Technical School to gain sufficient knowledge to teach drawing. As rector, the senior boys found him a good guide and friend, his spirituality influencing many. During this time he never spared himself, and all the time suffered from intense headaches. In his latter days he had heart disease, and died finally in his room at Riverview prior to going to hospital.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 8th Year No 2 1933
Obituary : Father Felix Conlon

The news from Australia announcing the death of Father Felix Conlon came as a painful surprise to all in this Province who were acquainted with him, and knew his robust health. Not even when we write this - three weeks later - has any letter arrived giving an indication of illness.

Born in New South Wales on 22nd January, 1888, Father Conlon was educated at Riverview, and joined the Society at Tullabeg in 1907. Like his three years of juniorate, which were spent in Tullabeg and Milltown, his philosophy was also divided between two houses - Louvain and Gemert. On his return to Australia in 1915, he spent a little over a year at Kew, where he was able to put to advantage the knowledge of French that he had gained during philosophy. At Riverview from 1917 to 1919 to classwork and the editorship of the “Alma Mater”, he had to add the care of a division. The success of his Rugby teams and his glowing accounts of their matches in the division-prefects' journal testify to his interest and enthusiasm. After theology at Milltown and tertianship at Paray-le-Monial, Father Conlon again returned to Australia where from 1925 to last year he was stationed at Kew. Here
again he was “doc”, teaching classics and French at one time or another in nearly every class in the school.. He was also prefect in charge of the boats. In this capacity he had the satisfaction of seeing his labours crowned with success when the Xavier crew - after twenty-two years of vain. effort - was for the first time champion among the Melbourne schools. In July of last year he was appointed socius to the Master of Novices.
Father Conlon died on the 20th January, just two days before his forty-fifth birthday. Though not a student by nature, Father Conlon had passed through the long years of study and teaching with the serenity and cheerfulness that characterised him. It was these traits, too, that always gained him a welcome in a community. When he was superior of a party travelling to Australia and, later, superior of the Kew villa for five years in succession, it was again his imperturbable good humour, joined with an unaffected enthusiasm in the excursions and other forms of recreation., that made him so highly appreciated by those about him. Seculars, too, who came in contact with him, experienced from this easy natural good humor an attraction towards. him. He will be followed by the prayers of the many friends who have been won to him in this way, especially of his friends in the Society, who, often unconscious of the fact at the time, owed to him many an hour made bright and fleeting.
It was only on the last day of February that the details of Father F. Conlon's death arrived. He lost his life in a heroic effort to save a young lad who was drowning. In order to reach the poor boy Father Conlon, Mr. B. O'Brien, S.J., and a gentleman named Miller, faced a wild sea in a small boat. The boat was soon capsized. Mr. O'Brien and Mr. Miller managed to reach the shore, but Father Conlon, a poor swimmer, was never again seen alive, May he rest in peace.
Through the exertions of Father Loughnan, Rector of Riverview, assisted by a number of the Riverview Community and others, the boy was saved. They managed to get a life-line out to him, and then, in. spite of great difficulties, and only after a long struggle, they succeeded in bringing him to land.

Johnson, Walter, 1888-1968, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1481
  • Person
  • 02 September 1888-14 September 1968

Born: 02 September 1888, Redfern, Sydney, Australia
Entered: 01 February 1915, Loyola, Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 14 September 1968, St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Older brother of Vincent - RIP 1978
◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Walter Johnson, brother of Vincent, was educated by the Marist Brothers, Broadway, and worked in Lasseter's store for seven years before entering the Society at Loyola College, Greenwich, 1 February 1915 . Then he spent the rest of his Jesuit life at St Ignatius' College, Riverview, 1917-68.
Apart from domestic duties, his special work was as accountant and bookkeeper. From time to time he was also storekeeper, dispenser, sacristan, in charge of the farm and garden, and ran the tuck shop. He was also a regular referee at games.
He was an institution at the college during those years, and was recognised by the community as most regular in his religious duties. He was a good community man, and accumulated a huge fund of stories about Jesuits and boys, and became a sort of repository of college tradition. He died suddenly in his chair in the community library on the day of the Indian Bazaar.
His life, uneventful and confined within the walls of one school, was marked by hard work, a strong sense of community and much charity The Old Boys, in a show of appreciation, gave him a dinner to mark his golden jubilee as Jesuit and presented a ciborium to the chapel in recognition of his years of service. He loved cricket and was a supporter of the Collingwood football team.

Johnson, Vincent, 1890-1978, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1480
  • Person
  • 11 December 1890-07 December 1978

Born: 11 December 1890, Redfern, Sydney, Australia
Entered: 14 August 1914, Loyola, Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Final Vows: 15 August 1925, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 07 December 1978, Caritas Christi Hospice, Kew - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the Campion College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Younger brother of Walter - RIP 1968

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Vincent Johnson, one of two brothers who entered the Society joined 14 August 1914. Johnson had not a very robust constitution during his noviciate, and moved to Sevenhill after his vows. Here he was refectorian, and showed signs of mild epilepsy. His final vows were taken on 15 August 1925.
The climate at Sevenhill seemed to restore his health so much that in the early 1930s Johnson was stationed at Xavier College where he was manager of the domestic staff and ran the famous Jersey stud at the farm. Soon after the farm was sold to pay off debts, Johnson was moved to the Messenger Office, replacing Brother Paul Duffy, who had been manager for many years. Father Eustace Boylan did not seem to have the necessary financial acumen to balance the books, but Johnson soon sorted out the financial situation and restored balance to the financial department. He moved on to help the province procurator, Philip Gleeson, at Campion College, Kew. In 1964 he celebrated his golden jubilee, well publicised in the Catholic press. He spent the years 1965-66 at the provincial residence, still helping the bursar at Campion College. This work was believed to be too heavy for him, and in 1967 he retired to Loyola College, the noviciate. Here he spent much of his time praying and writing out prayers for anyone interested. Sisters on retreat were frequency targets for these leaflets. The revised rite of the Mass was especially appreciated by Johnson who enjoyed greeting everyone near him at the 'kiss of peace'. He also had to be restrained at the prayers of the faithful. Even in his 80s he was as irrepressible as ever. He survived many emergency visits to hospital. When the noviciate moved to Sydney in 1974, Johnson chose to remain in Melbourne at Campion College. That year he celebrated his diamond jubilee. His speech reflected the happy personality that he always projected. However, he was never happier than during his time in hospital, and when he entered the hospice, Caritas Christi, his joy was complete.

Croasdaile, Henry, 1888-1966, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/760
  • Person
  • 09 October 1888-30 November 1966

Born: 09 October 1888, Belfast, County Antrim
Entered: 07 September 1908, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1921, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 30 November 1966, St Mary’s, Emo, County Laois

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1912 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

Irish Province News 42nd Year No 2 1967

Obituary :

Fr Henry Croasdaile SJ (1888-1966)

Lancelot Henry Croasdaile was born on the 9th of October 1888, at The Drift, Belfast, the native place of his mother, formerly a Miss O'Rourke. His childhood was spent at Rynn, Rosenallis, in the then Queen's County, the estate of his father, Major Croasdaile, D.L., J.P. He had a brother, who died in infancy, and two sisters, younger than himself. His father was a member of the Church of Ireland, but all the children were brought up Catholics. His mother died in 1905. Harry was educated at home until early in 1906 when he was sent to Clongowes. Though over sixteen, he was in the junior grade for his first two school years and ended in the middle grade. This comparatively undistinguished career was doubtless due to the informal nature of his previous education. He was later to show that he had more than average intellectual powers. In his last year at Clongowes he was Secretary of the House, an office then usually bestowed not for athletic prowess, but for the ability to entertain visitors, a task for which he was admirably suited.
In September 1908 he entered the noviceship at Tullabeg. His father, not unnaturally, strongly opposed this step, and Harry must have had considerable strength of character to persevere and to renounce an inheritance which must have been peculiarly attractive to one who had such a love of country life. After a year's juniorate at Tullabeg, he went to St. Mary's Hall, Stonyhurst, for philosophy.
From 1914 to 1919 he taught at Clongowes. He was quite an effective teacher, and his musical gifts added to his usefulness on the staff. He figures in many photographs in the Clongownian as a member of the choir and conductor of the orchestra. He was very popular with the boys, and no doubt this popularity was enhanced by his remarkable prowess as a sportsman. Though it belongs to his later time at Clongowes, there may be recorded here an excerpt from a letter still treasured in the family of one of the boys. “We went for a walk today with Fr. Croasdaile and he shot a peasant (sic)”
During this period occurred an incident which he was fond of recounting. In the early days of the Easter Rising of 1916 he be came anxious about his sisters, who were then living in Dublin, and set off on his bicycle to try to locate them. On reaching Dublin, he found the usual roads blocked by the military. He then attempted a circuitous approach, but somewhere in the vicinity of Dundrum was arrested by a patrol of soldiers and brought to Dunlaoire police station. Here he was lucky in finding a sympathetic sergeant of the D.M.P. who was indignant at the arrest of a priest and secured his release.
It may be mentioned in passing that Fr. Croasdaile used to boast that he was the only member of the Province to be imprisoned for his country. This was not correct. During Easter Week a present member of the Milltown Park community was lodged for an hour in Beggars Bush barracks. Some idea of the confusion that reigned in the minds of the military may be formed from the fact that the chief grounds for making the arrest were that the Jesuit had in his pocket a handkerchief with the initials of another member of the community and a list of names (which turned out to be his selection of “Possibles” for the next rugby international).
In 1919 Harry went to Milltown Park for theology and was ordained in 1922. After tertianship at Tullabeg he taught for a year at Belvedere and then returned for his second spell on the staff at Clongowes, 1926-31. It was about this time that he began to write a series of short stories for boys, largely based on his own experiences. At intervals, published by the Irish Messenger Office, appeared Stories of School Life, Parts 1-6, and later When the Storm Blew and a Dog Led. It seems to have been during these years also that his interest in organ-building was developed. He had a remarkable combination of the two gifts required for this craft, being a good musician (he played, besides the organ, the double bass and the euphonium - an unusual combination) and a first-class carpenter. This activity continued all his life until ill health forced him to relinquish it. He was an adept at buying up old organs and combining their parts to make new ones. He thus provided organs for Emo, Rathfarnham, Clongowes and for several country churches.
In 1931 Fr. Croasdaile was transferred to Mungret where he again taught and organised musical activities until 1939. He then acted as Assistant Director of Retreats at Rathfarnham, and in 1944 was appointed teacher of religion in the Commercial College, Rathmines, which post he held until 1955. In some ways this was the most successful period in his life. His Grace the Archbishop of Dublin had in 1941 appointed the first teachers in the Dublin vocational schools and the system was still in an experimental stage. Fr. Croasdaile entered into the work with enthusiasm, and carried out the purpose intended, not merely to teach religion formally, but to act as spiritual guide to the pupils. He interested himself in all their activities, especially, as might be expected, in music, and with a production of The Geisha in Rathmines Town Hall began a tradition of musical entertainments which still con tinues. He also established most friendly relations with the members of the teaching staff. One of them recalled a statement made to him by the late Mr. George Clampett, then Principal of the College : “I am not a co-religionist of Fr. Croasdaile, but I have no hesitation in saying that he has meant more to this school than any other person”. The following tribute to Fr. Croasdaile was recently paid by Mr. Seán O Ceallaigh, the present Principal :
“The teenage boys and girls attending the Technical School in Rathmines accepted him immediately as one of themselves. His fatherliness, his simple loyalty to the simple Christian principles which at their age they could understand, his facility in using the language which they could grasp, his obvious interest in the material progress and spiritual welfare of each one of them and of their families, all these virtues endeared him to them in a perfectly natural way. The obvious happiness which he took in their extra curricular activities brought them nearer him; his active participation in their games, in their drama, in their operas, in their Gaelic cultural activities (to make up, as he used to tell them, for his being a direct descendant of Oliver Cromwell!), and particularly his desire to give them a love for church music, exemplified in his accompanying the school choir in their rehearsals for the annual Votive Mass.
He took the greatest pleasure in meeting ex-students and in his daily conversation with the men and women teachers of different denominations in the school. He was really the first of the permanent priest-teachers in the city's technical schools; he exercised a new and wonderful influence on all of them. To this extent, Fr. Croasdaile was the pioneer, the man who proved to the educational and religious authorities that priest-teachers could play a vital role in vocational education. The remarkable development of this work in recent years is a monument to his character”.
When Fr. Croasdaile retired from his work in the College of Commerce in 1955, his health had been for some time giving cause for anxiety. After a year as Assistant in University Hall, he was transferred to Emo, and from that on was more or less an invalid. One who knew him well wrote: “There was a staunch courage and hardy faith about the way he met the ever-present prospect of death during the later precarious years of his life”.
It was, however, a consolation to him to be back in the county of his boyhood. He had always been devoted to his native Rosenallis, and delighted in reminiscences of his family. He found relief also from the inevitable monotony of a semi-invalid's life in a new interest which he developed, the local history of Laois. In this he was helped by the kindly interest of a good neighbour, Fr. Barry O'Connell, C.C., Mountmellick, with whom he made frequent historical and archaeological trips. His death, so often expected, came at last on 30th November 1966.
In the foregoing sketch many of Fr. Croasdaile's gifts have been touched on, his success in dealing with boys and young people, his musical talents, his skill in field sports, which was often a help to him in establishing good relations with men who would ordin arily have fought shy of a priest. To fill in the picture, a word must be said about him as a good companion. During the long years in which he worked in the colleges, he was heart and soul in his task. Knowing the boys so well, their work and play were a constant source of interest to him, and he had a droll sense of humour which enabled him to see the amusing side even of their misdemeanours. He was, therefore, a great community man, a great enlivener of recreation. He was an outstanding raconteur, and seemed to have an uncanny gift of getting involved in strange experiences, which he related with gusto. It is regrettable that the best of his stories have escaped the writer's memory.
Such are our memories of Fr. Harry Groasdaile, “Cro”, to use the name by which he was affectionately known throughout the Province, a memorable character, and, in his own humorous and original way, a most loyal and devoted son of the Society.

Bartley, Stephen, 1890-1955, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/62
  • Person
  • 25 December 1890-17 May 1955

Born: 25 December 1890, Grange, County Limerick
Entered: 07 September 1906, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1922, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1925, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 17 May 1955, St Vincent’s Hospital Dublin

Part of St Mary’s, Emo, County Laois community at the time of his death.
by 1911 at Cividale del Friuli, Udine Italy (VEM) studying

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 30th Year No 3 1955

Obituary :
Father Stephen Bartley 1890-1955
Born on Christmas Day, 1890, at Grange (Boher), Co. Limerick, Fr. Stephen Bartley was educated at the Crescent and entered the Society at Tullabeg in 1906, where he also did his juniorate before going to Cividale in Italy for philosophy. His years of regency were spent in Clongowes and in 1922 he was ordained at Milltown Park. With the exception of one interval as Minister in Milltown his whole priestly life was to be spent in Tullabeg, where he was Minister, Procurator and Rector, and in Emo, where he was Procurator for the last eleven years of his life. He died in St. Vincent's Hospital on May 17th.
Many of the qualities that went to make the man as we knew him came with the boy Stephen Bartley from the Co. Limerick farm: a traditional Irish Catholic faith, simple and undemonstrative though rooted deep; a loyalty to men and causes that, once given, was unwavering; a reserve shy to the: verge of secretiveness; an asceticism which had much of stoicism; a memory retentive of facts and a keen mind to order them; an eye for the best in man and beast and soil and a shrewd sense of money which, while never mean, had the millionaire's conviction of the value of a farthing. Those were talents out of the ordinary and within the limits of chronic ill-health-and at times beyond Stephen Bartley traded with them to the full. As Minister, Rector and Procurator he served the Province and the three houses in which his life was lived with devoted loyalty; and few, if any, excelled him in the heroic art of reading the greater glory of God from the prosaic pages of journals and ledgers. His antique battered fountain-pen has the quality of a relic. Barred from the pulpit by ill-health he was to find in the Confessional the spiritual outlet for his zeal. For 17 years his “box” in the People's Church in Tullabeg was a place of pilgrimage; and it would be hard to overestimate the veneration and esteem in which people of every walk in life held him. In Emo he became the valued confessor and confidant of the local clergy and he directed and consoled by letter many of the clients of his Tullabeg days. Many too are those in his own communities who must bear him lasting gratitude for his prudent and kindly guidance. Heroic in the quality of his hidden service to the Society and to souls, he was no less heroic in his acceptance of almost constant discomfort and suffering, Only in the last years of his life was it possible to get round him to make any real concession to his needs. His fire was a community joke; the few medicines he bothered to take were asked for with the simplicity of a novice; he had to be forced to take a holiday. It is probably true to say that no one ever heard him complain - certainly not of anything that concerned his personal requirements.
His very deep love for the Society found a suitable expression in his devotion to community life. His pleasure in recreation was a pleasure to see and save, when overwhelmed by numbers, he took full part in it. Secretly addicted to the reading of P. G. Wodehouse and Curly Wee, he had an unexpected turn of humour that stood him in good stead when parrying the recreational thrusts of his brethren or avoiding coming to too close quarters with some importunate query or request. His answers in such dilemmas have become part of the Province folk-lore. To a Father commiserating with him on the poisoning of a cow he replied gravely: “As a matter of fact, Father, we had one too many”. And after 20 years, one must still chuckle at the discomfiture of the scholastic who asked leave to go to a hurling match : “It wouldn't be worth it, Mr. X. All the best hurlers have gone to America”.
His peaceful and undemonstrative death was utterly in keeping with his life. The humour perhaps was in grimmer key when he begged his Rector not to allow an operation: “I'm not an insurable life, Father”. But his life's dedication to obedience's appointed task was all of a piece. Almost the last words he spoke were: “Everything will be found in order. I have brought the books up to date”. We cannot help being convinced that they are echoed in eternity.

Murphy, Leo, 1888-1957, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1801
  • Person
  • 05 November 1888-03 April 1957

Born: 05 November 1888, County Cork
Entered: 07 September 1905, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 18 May 1920
Final Vows: 02 February 1924, St Aloysius College, Milsons Point, Sydney, Australia
Died: 03 April 1957, Manresa, Toowong, Brisbane, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1876 at Roehampton London (ANG) studying
by 1877 at Laval France (FRA) studying
by 1910 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1911
by 1919 at St Mary’s, Kurseong, West Bengal, India (BELG) studying
by 1920 at Hastings, Sussex, England (LUGD) studying
by 1923 at La Colombière, Paray-le-Monial, France (LUGD) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Leo Murphy entered the Jesuits at Tullabeg, 7 September 1905. After his juniorate studies in Ireland, he went to Stonyhurst for philosophy. From 1912-18 he taught at St Aloysius' College, Milsons Point, NSW, being the first OC of cadets and sports master from 1915-18. He departed Australia for theology in Kurseong, India, and Hastings, England, before tertianship at Paray-Le-Monial in France, 1922-23.
He returned to St Aloysius' College, 1923-27, being prefect of studies from 1925-27. Then he became prefect of studies at Riverview, 1928-32, before returning to St Aloysius', 1933-34. He also edited the “Aloysian”.
From 1935 he performed parish duties, first, at North Sydney until 1942, and then at Toowong until 1954. He was meticulous about parish visitation, especially to the poorer families. It was said that he often suffered on behalf of others. Jesuits considered Murphy a good prefect of studies, but better at parish work. He was loved and respected by the people of the parishes he served.

Finn, Daniel J, 1886-1936, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/150
  • Person
  • 24 March 1886-01 November 1936

Born: 24 March 1886, Cork City
Entered: 06 September 1902, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 24 January 1919, Zakopane, Poland
Final Vows: 02 February 1924, St Ignatius College Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 01 November 1936, London, England

Part of the Holy Spirit Seminary community, Aberdeen, Hong Kong at time of his death.

by 1910 at Oxford, England (ANG) studying
by 1914 at Innsbruck, Austria (ASR-HUN) studying
by 1919 at Zakopane, Poland (GALI) working
by 1920 at Petworth, Sussex (ANG) health
by 1928 second batch Hong Kong Missioners

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
His early education was at Presentation Brothers College Cork. While still underage he won first place in Ireland in the Preparatory Grade, 1896, against over 2.600 competitors, securing 90% all round in his subjects. He was presented with a large gold medal and chaired through the College by his school fellows. Two years later he came second in the Junior Grade, winning four first composition prizes in Latin, French, German and Italian. He obtained a First Class Exhibition in his Middle and Senior Grades, while still underage, and in the Middle Grade, a gold medal for first place in three modern languages. During these years he also showed special devotion to Our Lady, and was noted for a certain gravity and cheerfulness of disposition, which he never lost.

He Entered the Society under Michael Browne in 1902 at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg
1904-1907 He remained at Tullabeg for his Juniorate.
1907-1909 He was sent to Rathfarnham Castle and University College Dublin gaining a BA in Archaeology.
1909-1910 He taught the Juniors at Tullabeg and went to St John’s College Oxford, where he gained a Diploma in Archaeology, and working under Sir Percy Gardner.
1910-1913 He was sent to Clongowes for regency, teaching Bookkeeping, Latin and Greek. His lectures to the community at this time on the great works of painting and sculpture were much appreciated.
1913-1917 He was sent to Innsbruck for Philosophy, and while there he learned Hungarian and some Slavic languages. His first sermon was in Irish on St Brigid, and while there he continued his interest in art and archaeology. Then because of the Italian entry into the war he was banished from the Tyrol and went to Kollegium Kalksberg close to Vienna, and he began Theology there in private, and gaining a sound knowledge of Hebrew.
1917-1920 He joined the Polish Theologate at Dzieddzice in Prussian Silesia. As a result of a severe cold here he contracted TB and was sent to the Jesuit residence at Zakopane, a famous health resort. He was Ordained there on 24 January 1919, in order to have consolation of dying a Priest. However, he was able to return to Ireland at the end of June that year, after spending the winder of 1919-1920 at Petworth Sussex in England.
1920-1922 He was sent to Australia and completed his Theology studies there and made Tertianship at Loyola Greenwich, whilst at the same time teaching the Juniors.
1922-1926 He was sent to St Ignatius College Riverview as a Teacher and Prefect of Studies. Here he was remembered for swimming in the baths, rowing on the river in the Gladstone skiff of a four, or throwing himself into a production of the Passion Play. Meanwhile, he taught one boy Japanese. During his time in Riverview he volunteered for the Japanese Mission, but he was diverted by Superiors to the Hong Kong Mission.
1926-1928 He resided in Hong Kong, engaged with the language and was employed at the University as a lecturer in pedagogy
1928-1931 He was in Canton in charge of the studied at Bishop Fourquet’s Sacred Heart School. There he also began the study of Chinese archaeology. He also translated several volumes of “Researches into Chinese Superstition” written by Fr Henri Doré SJ.
1931 He returned to Hong Kong he was appointed Spiritual Director of the Seminarians, Professor of Church History, and also a Lecturer in Geography at the University. In addition he found time for the research for which he would be chiefly remembered - his archaeological research in Lamma Island and other regions around Hong Kong which greatly enhanced the reputation of the Church in the Far East.
He represented the University and the Government at an International Congress in Manila and Oslo in 1936. His paper at Oslo was entitles “Crucial Doubts about the Most Important Finds in the Hong Kong Region”. At this same time he also managed to have published thirteen articles in the Hong Kong “Naturalist” entitled “Archaeological Finds on Lamma Island 1932-1936”
1936 he left Dublin for the British Museum on October 05, to continue his reading and discussion of the prehistoric specimens he had brought home with him. He was engaged in this work up to the 10th when he developed a carbuncle which indicated a general blood infection. He was transferred to hospital on the 16th, where despite expert treatment he failed to respond and he died.

He carried his learning lightly, and he laughed amusedly at the pedantic and ponderous. He was extremely humble, unassuming and simple, though a man of intense intellectual concentration and power for work. He was gifted with a strong robust character that knew no temporising or equivocation. His literary gifts were of a high order, as appeared from the little that was left in the way of letters written during his first years in China. He was an extraordinarily fine linguist, speaking Chinese, Irish, Latin, Greek, French, German, Polish and Japanese.

His early death saddened both his Jesuit and scientific colleagues.

◆ Hong Kong Catholic Archives :
Father Daniel Finn, S.J.
By Thomas. F. Ryan SJ

The news of Father Finn’s death came as a shock to all who knew him even by name, and it was a painful blow to those who knew him personally. He was one of those rare characters that are equally conspicuous for qualities of heart and of head, and among all who came in contact with him his genial disposition will be as well remembered as his brilliant intellect. His death is a loss to science and especially to Hong Kong, and it is particularly tragic that he should have died abroad while on a scientific mission, representing both the Government and the University of Hong Kong.

It is close on forty years since I first met Father Finn, and I can still remember the first occasion on which I heard his name. It was at the first distribution of prizes which I attended at school. As a new boy and a very diminutive member of the lowest class, I listened with awe to the Headmaster’s account of the successes of the year, and I can recall his attitude and the tone of his voice as he told how one Daniel Finn found himself in a very enviable dilemma after his first public examination - he had to choose which of two gold medals he would accept. He had qualified for two, one for being first in Ireland in whole examination, and the other for being first in modern languages, but even in those amazing nineties when gold medals were awarded so liberally, no student in this examination could receive more than one. I forget which he chose, but I remember that the Headmaster fully approved of it - as headmasters always do on such occasions.

It was not long before the “Daniel” of the Headmaster’s speech gave place to “Dan.” Three years is a considerable gap between school-boy ages and to me Dan Finn was one of the Olympians, but he was a very cheerful divinity and was as much a hero to the smaller boys as if he were a proud athlete who never passed an examination. He never changed much in appearance from what he was as a boy. He was of the same build then as later, short and sturdy, with the same quizzical look about his eyes, and the same pucker of the lips, and the same odd angle of the head when he was hesitating about something. He grew careless about his clothes as the years went on, but as a boy in Cork forty years ago he was neatness itself, and the wide white collar above the Norfolk coat of those days was always spotless. He took no active part in games, but his best friend was a prominent athlete, and at school football-matches he was constantly to be seen on the touchline, leaning on the shoulder of some companion, and talking incessantly.

He had many family sorrows during his school-days, but they left no scars, and his good-humoured disposition never varied. His success in studies was phenomenal. It was commonly said of him in our school-days that he got first in every examination for which he sat. I am sure that this was an exaggeration, but it cannot have been very far from the truth. He was the only boy I remember whose photograph was hung in the school immediately after he left it. It was put over the fireplace in my classroom, and as we sat around the fire before class or during recess, remarks were often made about him.
“Where is he now?” someone asked one day.
“He is gone to be a Jesuit,” someone else answered.
That was the first time that I heard of anyone I knew becoming a Jesuit.

After a few years he began his University studies in Dublin, and before long the name of Rev. D. Finn, S.J., began to head the lists of examination results. As a boy he had taken up modern languages - French, German and Italian - for no other reason than that the school which we both attended cultivated them particularly. At the University he took up classics, and it was classics that formed the basis of the wide culture that was afterwards his. His entrance into classical studies was almost sensational, for after six months study of Greek he won a scholarship and first place in Greek and Latin in the University entrance examination. First with first-class honours in every examination, and every scholarship within reach, would be a correct summing up of this university career.

Recording examination successes is a monotonous thing, and in the case of Father Finn the less said about examinations the better if a proper estimate of him is to be given. He hated examinations. The humdrum work which they demanded was nauseating to him, and it was fortunate that preparation for them demanded such little effort on his part. He was always at his best when off the beaten track. I remember once meeting him in a country place when he was resting after a bout of examinations. He had a geologist’s hammer in his hand and was off to a railway cutting to look for fossils. The byways of the classics soon interested him. He stopped his first reading of Homer to make a model of a trireme, and a very ingenious model it was, with the oars made to scale and of a much more reasonable length than some antiquarians suggested. A year later he had developed a new theory for completing the friezes of the Parthenon, and he beguiled a number of people into adopting statuesque poses and allowing themselves to be photographed to demonstrate his theory. I have a vivid recollection of the sheepish look of a village shoe-maker who found himself dressed in a trousers and a long red curtain, standing on one leg and holding his arms at unnatural angles.

Whenever he seemed on the point of demanding a return to modern clothes and village dignity, Father Finn used tactfully to interject a remark about his splendid muscles, and so secure a continuance of the pose for another photograph.

On being awarded a Travelling Studentship from the University in Ireland, Father Finn went to Oxford, and from his time his classical studies were carried on more and more in museums rather than from books. His reading indeed was then as at all times, enormous, but he was by nature an explorer in unusual spheres and henceforth his reading was mainly a background for his explorations. In Oxford he devoted himself to the writing of a thesis on the colouring of Greek sculpture. It won him the highest praise, and one of the professors excused himself from the usual examination on the plea that the reading of the thesis showed that the writer know more about it than he did. When he returned to Ireland the first thing that he did was to look up the Greek professor in Dublin who had whetted his interest in archaeology and suggest to him that they should start some excavations on the hill of Tara.

A few years teaching classics in a secondary school followed. These were undistinguished years, for preparing boys for examinations was emphatically not Father Finn’s strong point. But he interested some of his cleverer pupils in all kinds of strange branches of study, and years later many men acknowledged their indebtedness to him for an interest in intellectual pursuits which they would otherwise never have had.

When it was time for him to go abroad to do further studies I received a letter from him. I was then in Italy and he wanted to know if it would be good for him to go to study in Rome, as was suggested. His idea was that an alternation of lectures in philosophy and visits to museums would be better than whole-time philosophical studies. But before my reply reached him it was decided that residence in a German-speaking house would be most useful for his future studies in the classics. So he was sent to Innsbruck, in the Tyrol. This decision, with which he was delighted, was to prove a fateful one for him.

In the December before the war broke out I was passing through Austria and met him in Innsbruck. I was bewildered by the number of new interests that engrossed him. Munich was near enough for an occasional visit to its museums and picture-galleries, but now the social movements in Germany and Austria had begun to attract him, and Austrian folk-lore was tugging at his attention too. He had always been a student of art, and his special leaning was towards Gothic architecture and Gothic sculpture, and he found time to give considerable time to it in Innsbruck. There was a problem here, too, to attract him, and I was not many hours in the town before he had me standing beside the Emperor Maximilan’s tomb while he expounded his theories about the identity of the famous figures surrounding it.

In the following summer the war broke out and Fr. Finn, from being among friends, became a stranger in a hostile land. Though the Austrians treated the alien residents with all that courtesy in which they excel, yet war is war and conditions were hard. At first things were not so bad, he was allowed to continue his studies, and all that was demanded was that he should report regularly to the police authorities. Then he had to do hospital work; then supplies began to run low - then his health gave out. The remaining years were difficult ones. An effort to get permission for him to leave the country did not succeed. But within the possibilities of wartime conditions he was treated with every consideration. He was moved from place to place, to countries that have since changed their names, and after some time in Lower Austria, in Hungary and in Czechoslovakia he was sent finally to Poland, where he could continue his studies. He was fond of Poland, and spoke more of it than of any of the other countries in which he lived. He learned the Polish language and a certain amount of Russian. It was in Poland that he was ordained to the priesthood.

After the war he returned to Ireland sadly broken in health. He had developed tuberculosis, and the only hope of saving his life was to go to a drier climate. He went to Australia and there he made a rapid recovery. To anyone who knew him in Hong Kong it would seem fantastic to suggest that he was a delicate man, but it is true that his health was never the same after the period of semi-starvation which he had gone through in the last years of the war, and it was only by adopting a special diet that he could keep going. The diet was not an attractive one, but he certainly kept going.

In Australia he became Prefect of Studies in Riverview College, near Sydney, and there as usual he continued his interest in all kinds of side issues. It was one of these latter that eventually brought him to the East. There were some Japanese pupils in this College, and in order to be able to help them in their studies Father Finn began to study Japanese - a language more or less never worried him. Inevitably he soon became interested in Japanese antiquities, and before long he was in communication with some fellow-Jesuits in Japan.

There is a Jesuit University in Tokyo, directed by German Fathers, and when they found that a man of Father Finn’s standing was interested in things Japanese, they declared at once that the place for him was Tokyo, and they made demarches to get him there. After some negotiations everything was arranged, and he left Australia on a boat that was to bring him to Japan. That was in the beginning of 1927.

Then happened one of those things that people say happen only to Jesuits. When the ship was on the high seas and Father Finn was immersed in his Japanese studies, a wireless message came to him, telling him that he was not to go to Japan after all, but that he was to get off at Hong Kong and go no further. It had happened that between the time that arrangements were made for him to go to Tokyo and the end of the Australian school year, when it would be possible for him to start, it had been decided that some Irish Jesuits were to come to Hong Kong, and it was felt that this colony had first claim on the services of Father Finn. So, a little bewildered by the unexpected change that blew all his plans sky-high, Father Finn landed in Hong Kong in February, 1927. He was then forty-one years old.

It happened that during his years in Australia his position as Prefect of Studies in a large college had brought him a good deal into educational circles and aroused his interest in pedagogical matters. As interest for him found expression in deep study, he set to work to master the theory of education. In a few years whatever he had to say on matters connected with education was listened to with respect, and when he was leaving Sydney there was public expression of regret that New South Wales was losing a leading authority on education. Hong Kong at that time was looking for a substitute for Professor Forster, to take his place as Professor of Education in the University while he was on leave, and the result was that Father Finn was only a few days in the Colony when he was asked to take the position, So his connection with the Hong Kong University began.

Always a conscientious worker, Father Finn took the greatest care to do his work in the University in a way that was worthy of his position, and this was little short of heroic on his part, for, having come to China, his one desire was to go as deeply and as quickly as possible into the new field of antiquities that was open to him. He found time to begin the study of Chinese, however, but it was not until his temporary occupancy of the professorship was at an end that he was able to devote himself with all the intensity that he desired to his new studies. But he was not long free, and his next move was to Canton, where he taught, and later directed, the studies in the Sacred Heart College. Here his colleagues had an opportunity of seeing the way in which he worked, for, while most of his day was given to work in the classroom, he managed at the same time to give from five to seven hours each day to the study of Chinese. He made rapid strides in the language and, though he never acquired a good pronunciation, he learned to speak fluently Cantonese and some other local dialects and to read Chinese with such ease as is rarely acquired by a foreigner.

From that time forward Chinese antiquities occupied every moment that was free from his regular duties. When he spent some time in Shanghai, part of it was given to translating some of the Recherches sur les Superstitions en Chine, by P. Doré, S.J., and in whatever house he lived in Hong Kong his room soon took on the appearance of a museum. There was never any such thing as leisure time in his programme-study of one kind or another filled every available moment. He worked with great rapidity. He got to the “inside” of a book in a very short time, and every book that he read was a work of reference to him ever after, for at a moment’s notice he seemed to be able to trace any passage or any illustration in any book that he had read. In the few years that he had it was remarkable how much ground he covered in Chinese antiquities. On this subject his reading extended to practically every work of note in English, German and French, and to a considerable number of books also in Chinese and Japanese-for he had worked hard at Japanese when he realized that it was necessary for his antiquarian studies. His appointment as Lecturer in Geography in the Hong Kong University revealed another side of his interests, for it was only when his name came up in connection with the position that it was realised how fully abreast he was of modern methods of geographical study, and how detailed, in particular, was his knowledge of the geography of China.

His interest was gradually converging on archaeological research in Hong Kong when an accidental circumstance threw him right into the midst of it. He was living in the Seminary at Aberdeen, and one morning, about five years ago, he crossed the creek in the early morning to go to say Mass in the Convent of the Canossian Sisters in the village. As he climbed up from the sampan he saw a pile of sand being unloaded from a junk by the shore. His eye caught a fragment of an arrow-head in the sand. He picked it out, put it in his pocket and went on. But on his return an hour later he stopped to examine the sand, and found that it came from an archaeologist's gold mine, for within a short time he found several other interesting stone fragments and a few pieces of bronze. He questioned the men who were still engaged in unloading it, and found that it came from Lamma Island out in the bay. Further inquiries revealed that the work was being done under Government authority, and the sand was being removed rapidly by shiploads. To him this was vandalism and tragedy combined. He knew already from the work of Professor Shellshear and Mr. Schofield how important were the archaeological remains to be found around Hong Kong, and how illuminating they might be in their relation to many of the unsolved problems of pre-history, and here he found valuable evidence of the past being used to build walls and make drains. He had to act at once if he was to do his part for science and Hong Kong, he got through preliminaries as quickly as possible and within a week he was excavating on Lamma Island.

The results exceeded all expectations. To the uninitiated the stones and bits of earthenware which he handled so reverently were a disappointing result after hours of digging in the glaring sun, but to him and to others that were able to read their message, they were keys to unlock new storehouses of knowledge of the past. He now began to communicate his discoveries to scholars in other lands, and their interest was manifest. The Government of Hong Kong was alive to the importance of this new field of research and it gave a grant towards the expense connected with it. Henceforth Father Finn’s big interest in life was the archaeology of Hong Kong.

It would seem as if all his previous life was a preparation for these few years. Up to this time one might have said of him that he was taking too many things in his line of vision and that he would have done better if he had concentrated on some one branch of study. He had in him the capacity to do really great work in some one direction, but the multitude of his interests made him just a man of encyclopaedic knowledge when he might have been a specialist of eminence. But now all the jigsaw elements of his previous studies seemed to fall together and to make the essential background for his work in an almost unexplored branch of science. His classical training, his long study of classical archaeology, his scientific interests, his close study of history and geography, his knowledge of art-these were all essential to him now, but they could only be utilised because he possessed the archaeologist's flair that made him know what to seek and how to interpret, and gave his work in this field the character of genius. He enlarged the field of knowledge in this particular branch of archeology, even though, as he claimed, his work in it had hardly begun. His numerous articles in the Hong Kong Naturalist, ably illustrated by his esteemed friend Dr. Herklots, and the collection of objects excavated by him are all that remain as a record of his work. What he might have done if he had been spared for a few years more we can only surmise. It is the possibility of great achievement that makes his death so tragic.

And what of the man behind the student and the scholar? I have told of him as a well-liked boy even though of a class rarely conspicuous for popularity. As a man, among his Jesuit associates and with his few other friends, he was known and will always be remembered for his delightful disposition and perennial good humour. I am sure that no one who ever came into contact with Father Finn ever found in him a trace of conceit. The mere suggestion of it is ludicrous to anyone who knew him, and when any were led by ignorance of his own particular field of research to be critical of its utility, he was never provoked-even in their absence-to anything more than a good-humored sally. His wide interests embraced the work of all his companions. He knew what interested each one, and he was genuinely interested in it too. In everything he was always ready to help those who wanted his assistance, and much as he deplored the loss of a moment of time, he gave it unstintingly when the need of another claimed it. His thoughtfulness and sympathetic kindness made him a friend of all who knew him, and it is those who were associated with him most closely that will miss him most.

When writing of a priest-scholar it is often thought enough to add a paragraph at the end stating that, of course, this scholar was also a priest, and that he was all that a priest should be. To do so in the case of Father Finn would leave the picture of him very incomplete. His life was essentially that of a priest and religious devoted to science and scholarship rather than that of a scholar who happened to wear a Roman collar. The principles that moulded his life were visible in his attitude towards every duty assigned him and every branch of his study. If at any time, for any reason, he had been told to drop whatever work he was doing and turn to something completely new, he would have done it without question at a moment’s notice. Everyone who knew him realised that. From the moment he came to China he regarded himself as a missionary. His work was to spread the knowledge of God’s Truth, and he was ready to do it in any way that came within his scope. He did it abundantly by his example alone, and the testimonies about him since his death show that this influence of his example extended over a far wider field that he would ever have imagined.

In June, 1936, he left Hong Kong to attend an Archaeological Congress in Oslo. His report there on the work in Hong Kong attracted wide attention. Invitations poured in on him-to go to various centres of learning in Europe and America, to join in excavations in many lands. He was able to accept only a few, for he had already arranged to join in some research in the Malay Peninsula next spring. But he visited Sweden, Denmark and France, and then made a brief visit to his native Ireland. From there he went to London, to study in the British Museum. While in London he was attacked by some kind of blood poisoning-the result, he believed, of something he contracted in his archaeological work in Hong King, but who can tell? The doctors could not trace the source of the infection, but it proved fatal after a month’s illness.

When the news of his death came to Hong Kong it was felt as a personal sorrow by those whose sympathy he would have valued most. Poor boat-women on the sampans at Aberdeen wept when they were told it, and little children on Lamma Island were sad when they were told that he would not come back. It was the welcome of such as these that would have pleased him most if he returned; it is their regret at his death that most reveals to us his real worth. May he rest in peace.
The Irish Jesuit Directory and Year Book 1938

From Milan to Hong Kong 150 Years of Mission, by Gianni Criveller, Vox Amica Press, 2008.

Note from Thomas Ryan Entry
In 1941 he published “Jesuits under Fire”. He edited “Archaelogical Finds on Lamma Island”, the work of Daniel Finn.

◆ Biographical Notes of the Jesuits in Hong Kong 1926-2000, by Frederick Hok-ming Cheung PhD, Wonder Press Company 2013 ISBN 978 9881223814 :
He excelled at school in modern languages, being awarded Gold medals for French, German and Italian. He did a brilliant thesis on the colouring of statues by the ancient Greeks.
1913 He was sent to Innsbruck Austria for Philosophy. There he took up a keen interest and fascination in Austrian folklore.
1931 Chinese antiquaries absorbed him when he taught at the South China Regional Seminary in Aberdeen. He made a study of the deities and statues of the Aberdeen boat people, ad then he sent these to the Lateran Museum in Rome. In the 1930s he lectured also at The Chinese University of Hong Kong in Geography.
1932 While teaching Theology and Scripture at Aberdeen he came across a fragment of an arrowhead in sand brought from the south western shores of Lamma Island. He traced the source and found stone fragments and bronze pieces along with pottery fragments. This led to his writings on the Pre-Han and Stone Age history of the South China coast, which at the time was new to the archaeological world. He was a pioneer in archaeology in Hong Kong

Note from Thomas Ryan Entry
In 1941 he published “Jesuits under Fire”. He edited “Archaeological Finds on Lamma Island”, the work of Daniel Finn.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 10th Year No 3 1935

Works by Father Dan Finn SJ :

  1. “Researches into Chinese Superstitions," by Rev. H. Doré, SJ (Shanghai - Translated into English by Father D. Finn, S.J.
  2. Vol IX : Taoist; Taoist Personnages, 1931 - pp xx + 227, 76 plates
  3. Vol X : Boards of heavenly Administration, 1933 - pp ix + 179, 39 plates (Both published at Tusewei Printing Press, Shanghai)
  4. A booklet : “Some Popular Indulgences Explained” - Messenger Office
  5. A series of articles on “Archaeological Finds on Lamma Island” - They appear in the Hong Kong Naturalist (Quarterly), From Vol. III, Parts 3 and 4, Dec. 1954, up to current issue.

Irish Province News 12th Year No 1 1937

Father Daniel Finn

Following so soon on the loss of Father Lyons, the unexpected death of Father Finn in a nursing home in London on Nov. 1st comes as a tragic blow to the Province and the Hong Kong Mission. Had he been allotted the normal span of life he would in all human probability have emerged a savant of the first order. He died just as he was winning a European reputation through his archaeological discoveries in China.
Born in Cork city, 24th March, 1886, he was educated at the Presentation College. When still under age he won 1st Place in Ireland in the Preparatory Grade, 1896, against over 2,600 competitors, securing 90 per cent all round in his subjects, and was awarded by his school a large gold medal, and was chaired through the College by his school-fellows. Two years later he came second in the Junior Grade, winning four first composition prizes in Latin, French, German and Italian. He got first-class exhibitions in Middle and Senior Grades, while still under age and, in the Middle Grade, a gold medal for first place in the three modem languages.
In these youthful days he had a wonderful and outspoken devotion to Our Blessed Lady and was noted for a certain gravity and cheerfulness of disposition which he never lost.
He began his noviceship in Tullabeg 6th September, 1902, remained there for two vicars' juniorate, during which he won 1st Place in the Classical Scholarship Examination (Royal University) and then went to College Green, where he began the study of Archaeology. After getting his B.A. degree he was sent for a year to Tullabeg to teach the juniors. In 1909-10 he studied Archaeology at Oxford, and secured a diploma in that subject. For the next three years he was a master at Clongowes. He could scarcely be pronounced a successful teacher on Intermediate lines and was given other classes. In them, with a number of other subjects, he taught book keeping with characteristic zest and humility. The delightful lectures he gave to the Community during these years reveal an astonishingly detailed acquaintance with all the great works of painting and sculpture.
He began his philosophy at Innsbruck in 1912, and during the three years acquired a certain fluency in Hungarian and in three at least of the Slav languages, keeping up his knowledge of Irish all the time. His first sermon in the refectory on St. Brigid was preached in his native tongue. His first loves, art and archaeology were by no means neglected.
in July 1915, in company with Father Halpin, and with the writer of the present lines, he alas banished from the Tirol by the War authorities, on Italy's entry into the struggle, and went to our College at Kalksberg near Vienna, where he began theology in private. While there he acquired a profound knowledge of Hebrew.
In 1917 he was able to join the Polish theologate at Dziedzice in Prussian Silesia. It was here, as a result of a severe cold he contracted consumption and was sent to the Jesuit Residence at Zakopane, a famous health resort. He was ordained on 24th February, 1919, in order to have the consolation of dying a priest.
However, he was able to return to Ireland at the end of June, and after spending the winter of 1919 at Petworth, when he continued his study of theology, he was sent to Australia. At Loyola he did his “third year”, and spent another year teaching the Juniors, getting completely rid of his delicacy. His chief work in Australia was done as Protect of Studies at Riverview 1922-26.
During that period he volunteered for the Japanese Mission and, after a splendid send-off from Riverview, set sail. A letter of his to Father Fahy best explains that he landed not at Yokohama but at Hong Kong.
For a year he resided at Hong Kong engaged on the language and employed at the University as lecturer in pedagogy. From 1928 to the summer of 1931 he was at Canton in charge of the studies of Bishop Fourquet's College. Just then things were looking bad, and there was a possibility of martyrdom. It was at Canton he began the study of Chinese archaeology. Returning to Hong Kong he was made spiritual director to the Seminarians, their professor in Church History, lecturer in geography at the University. Notwithstanding all this, he found time for that fine work for which he will be chiefly remembered - his archaeological researches on Lamma island and other regions around Hong Kong, by which he greatly enhanced the reputation of the Church in the Far East. He represented the University and the Government at the International Congress of Manila in 1935. and at Oslo in 1936. This latter was the occasion of his return to Europe, His paper read at Oslo was entitled - “Crucial Doubts about the Most Important Finds in the Hong Kong Region”. The full bearing of his discoveries he had not yet been able with certainty to divine, and herein lies the full tragedy of his untimely death. However, we have an enduring monument of his powers of research in the thirteen articles printed in the “Hong Kong Naturalist”, entitled “Archaeological Finds on Lamma Island”. They date from December, 1932, to 1936.
On October 5th Father Finn left Dublin for the British Museum to continue his reading and discussion of the prehistoric specimens he had brought home with him. He was engaged in this work up to the 10th when he was attacked by a carbuncle trouble which indicated a general blood infection. On the 16th he was transferred to SS. John and Elizabeth's Hospital, where, despite expert treatment, he failed to put up an effective resistance, and died at 10.10 am. on Sunday, 1st November, having received Holy Viaticum for the last time about an hour before his death. He was buried in Kensal Green cemetery on 3rd November.
Father Dan carried his learning lightly. He laughed amusedly at the pedantic and ponderous when he met them, he was extremely humble unassuming and simple, though a man of intense intellectual concentration and power of work. He was gifted with a strong, robust character which knew no temporising or equivocation. His literary gifts were of a high order, as appears from the little he has left in the way of letters written during his first years in China and preserved in the Province News of that period - in them are best mirrored his character and gifts of imagination and heart, his profound humility, his Ignatian spirit of obedience, his exquisite sensibility, his love of Christ and souls.
We owe the above appreciation and record of Father Finn's life to the great kindness of Father john Coyne, Socius to Father Provincial.

Irish Province News 12th Year No 2 1937

Father Dan Finn - Hong Kong Letters
News of Father Finn's death came as a very severe blow. It is unnecessary to say how much the Mission feels his loss. both as a member of the community and as a worker who had won for the Society very considerable honour by his industry and erudition.
Many letters have been received from all sections expressing their sympathy. The following is that received from the Vice Chancellor and Council of the University :
Dear Father Cooney,
There is no need for me to write to tell you how profoundly affected I am by Father Finn's death. Father Finn was a great scholar and his was an all-winning personality. His death is a
severe loss to this University, to this Colony, to China, and indeed to the rapidly disappearing world of scholarship and culture. What Father Finn’s death means to his fellow Jesuits in Hong Kong I can faintly imagine but am totally unable to express. The University Council will, at its next meeting, record a resolution. Meanwhile, on behalf not only of myself, but also of the University. will you please precept my sincerest sympathy.
Yours Sincerely,

Extract from the minutes of the seventh meeting of the Council held 6th November :
The Council learned, with great regret, of the death of the Rev. D. J. Finn SJ, the University lecturer in Geography, and passed the following resolution - “The Council wished to place on record its poignant regret at the death of the Rev. Father Finn of the Society of Jesus. The Council realises the devoted work which Father Finn did not only for the Colony of Hong Kong and its University but also for the world of scholarship, learning and culture, and is painfully conscious of the loss which his untimely death involves. The Council hereby instructs the Registrar to convey to the Superior and Procurator of the Jesuit Mission in Hong Kong its profound sympathy with the Mission in its heavy loss. The Council will be grateful if the Superior would convey to the members of Father Finn's family the assurance that the University shares with them the affliction of their bereavement.” The members indicated the adoption of the resolution by standing in silence.

On 7th November there was a Sung Office and Solemn Requiem Mass at the Seminary. The Bishop presided at the special invitation of the Italian Fathers, who said that they regarded Father Finn as “one of their own priests,” a Solemn Requiem Mass was celebrated in the Cathedral on 26th November. Amongst those present were His Excellency, the Governor of Hong Kong, the Vice-Chancellor and Professors of the University, and many friends, both Catholic and non-Catholic. The newspapers gave a full account with the title “Tribute paid to Jesuit - Governor attends Requiem Mass for Father Finn” “Indicative of the high esteem in which Hong Kong held the late Rev. Daniel Finn, S.J., who died in Europe three weeks ago, was the big attendance of distinguished non Catholic mourners who attended the Requiem Mass for the repose of his soul in the Catholic Cathedral this morning. Among them was His Excellency the Governor, Sir Andrew Caldecott, who took his seat with Sir William Hornell, Vice-Chancellor of the University, near the impressive catafalque” etc.

Father Finn's last letter to Father Cooney, dated London, 10th October, ran :
“Here I am enjoying myself as usual. Most days at the British Museum from I0 am. to 5.30 pm. l have developed some boil trouble which I am getting a local doctor to overhaul. I suppose it will be nothing.”
At the Mass the Seminarians. from Aberdeen formed the choir. Father G. Bvrne preached a short panegyric.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Daniel Finn 1886-1936
Fr Daniel Finn, a native of Cork, entered the Society in 1902. With his University studies over, he went to the continent for his philosophical and theological studies.

In 1919 he returned to Ireland in poor health, and for this reason he was sent to Australia, where for seven years he was Prefect of Studies. He was on his way to Japan in 1926 when notified of his attachment to the Hong Kong Mission. Here he turned to what was really the big work of his life, for from his University days in Oxford he had excelled in Archaeology.

In spite of all his work, travels and successes, he never forgot the primary object of his life – God’s greater glory, and he always had a notable devotion to Our Lady.

He went, on his way to an Archaelogical Congress to in Oslo, when he fell ill in London, and he died there on the Feast of All Saints 1956, being only fifty years of age.

Owens, William, 1888-1963, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1964
  • Person
  • 01 November 1888-07 August 1963

Born: 01 November 1888, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1905, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1921, St George's Cathedral, London, England
Final Vows: 01 February 1924, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 07 August 1963, St Vincent's Hospital, Fitzroy, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Brother of Gerald - Left 1926

Came to Australia for Regency 1910
by 1913 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1919 at St Mary’s, Kurseong, West Bengal, India (BELG) studying

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
William Owens, affectionately known as “Gerry” was educated at Belvedere College, Dublin, and entered the Society at Tullabeg, 7 September 1905. He remained there for his juniorate 1907-10, and prepared for his university exams at Milltown Park, 1910-11. He taught at Galway, 1911-12, before philosophy studies at Stonyhurst, 1912-14. He taught students for the public examinations at Xavier College, Melbourne, 1914-18, before theology studies at Kurseong, India, Milltown Park and St Beuno's, Wales, 1918-22. Tertianship followed at Tullabeg, 1922-23.
Owens returned to Xavier College in 1923, and remained there teaching until his death in 1963. During these years he was also consultor, 1931-62, prefect of studies, 1934-41, in charge of senior debating, 1926-42, and worked with Old Xaverians. He was spiritual father and still teaching at the time of his death.
He was an institution at Xavier College, independent minded and a real individual. He was much appreciated as an eloquent teacher of modern history Latin and Greek. He taught with great ease and distinction, treating his students as adults, and helping many to gain high honurs and distinctions each year. He was a teacher whose great command of English, Greek and Latin inspired many boys to a love of learning, wide reading, and quiet discipline. He gave students the sense that secular interests could coexist happily with faith. His style of life, prayer and scholarship was inspiring.
He was a man of mature judgment, where he himself was not involved, and could be charming. He had a nervous disposition that caused ill health, and he was painfully reserved. He read widely and was an authority on the classics, English and French literature, and all modern political movements. He had many friends and was very loyal and generous to them. He always seemed to be on hand for direction and consultation.
In his early days at Xavier he was a keen tennis player and a good left-hand bowler. For over 50 years he was a first class golfer and played regularly at Kew, even taking a day off school every week to play. He was a good example of a healthy mind and a healthy body.
Though he looked very frail he really had a strong physique. He survived a serious heart attack some years before his death but recovered very quickly He had a second heart attack two years before he died. Again he recovered quickly and was back at work, but this time he had to relinquish golf.
He was a popular retreat-giver, and much in demand. For years he gave retreats in convents throughout Victoria.
He suffered a severe blow in 1926 when his younger brother Gerald left the Society. Gerald had just completed a biennium in moral theology and had been appointed to Werribee, but does not seem to have arrived. He went to the USA and married.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 39th Year No 1 1964
Obituary :
Fr William Owens SJ
Fr. William Owens was one of a large group of Belvederians who entered the Society at Tullabeg in the early 1900s.
Taking his vows in 1907 he studied up to Second Arts under the old Royal University - and when that institution was replaced by U.C.D. he went to Dublin to attend lectures for his degree in Classics.
He taught for one year at St. Ignatius College, Galway, and then went to Stoneyhurst for philosophy. He was then sent to the Australian mission and taught at Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne. Owing to shipping difficulties this was 1914-during World War I he was unable to return to Dublin for his theology but made his first year at Kurseong, India. At the end of the year, however, it was possible for him to return to Dublin and Milltown Park for the remainder of his theology.
Fr. Owens was ordained at St. George's Cathedral, Southwark, in 1920, and did his tertianship at Tullabeg under Fr. Joseph Wellesby.
Having completed his tertianship Fr. Owens returned to Australia where he was to spend the remainder of his life teaching at Xavier College - except for a term spent at Riverview College, Sydney.
He excelled as a teacher of Modern History and the Ancient Classics - and was well versed in English and French Literature. Year after year his pupils took high honours and distinctions and left school well prepared for their courses in the universities. With a rare capacity for friendship, he commanded great influence among the many generations of boys who passed through his hands; loyal and generous he was always ready with counsel and directions and kept in close contact with them in after life.
Though frail and delicate looking, Fr. Owens was really a very strong man. In his early years he was a keen tennis-player, a good left-hand bowler, and he played golf regularly on the Kew links where for many years he was a well-known figure. He survived two heart attacks in later life—but they did not prevent him continuing to teach.
Fr. Owens was an excellent religious - rose early and said Mass with great devotion. He was a very popular retreat giver and was in great demand among religious throughout Victoria in that capacity.
He was faithful to the class-room to the last - on the 7th August, 1963 he took his morning classes as usual though he had a very heavy cold. At 7p.m. he went to St. Vincent's Hospital where he received the Sacrament of the Sick and died an hour later, May he rest in peace.

Loughnan, Basil, 1887-1967, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1593
  • Person
  • 09 May 1887-22 January 1967

Born: 09 May 1887, Christchurch, New Zealand
Entered: 07 November 1903, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1919, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 01 February 1924, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 22 January 1967, St John of God Hospital Richmond, NSW - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931
Older brother of Louis Loughnan - RIP 1951
WWII Chaplain

by 1908 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1911 in Australia - Regency

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Basil Loughnan was educated at Christ's College and Riverview, and then entered the Society at Tullabeg, 7 November 1903. Further Jesuit studies were in Dublin and Stonyhurst, England. His regency was at Riverview, 1910-16.
He was ordained in Dublin, 8 April 1919, and returned to Australia in 1921, teaching Latin and English, and in charge of rowing at Xavier College, 1921-26. He worked then in the Norwood parish, 1926-30.
His most significant appointment was to Newman College, Melbourne University, 1930-1937, where he distinguished himself as a philosopher. At this time the general awarded him a PhD, because his Jesuit studies were recognised by the Gregorian University.
Afterwards, he spent four years at Werribee and then he taught Hebrew, Greek and the history of philosophy to Jesuit scholastics at Pyrnble from 1939-41, and from 1942-46 was a military chaplain, going to Japan at the end of the war.
When he enlisted, he put his age back so that he might get more into the action. He did his parachute jumps, when quite elderly, and slept under canvas. As a chaplain, he had no human respect, and if ever at the officers' mess the conversation became nasty, he went for the offending officers and then left the table. He was tireless in his work for the troops, and was congratulated by the chaplain general for having made more converts than any other chaplain. He got on very well with many important military people. But he also did several quixotic things. He went through the hardest jungle training and long marches as though he were a young man, all of which contributed to his declining health. It appeared that he had no concern for his own life at all.
When the war was over, he was a cripple. Gradually he became worse, until he could not walk without two sticks, and then later, not at all. Being externally rough in conversation on occasions, he covered up the depth of his spirituality, patience, courage and kindness.
He returned to North Sydney parish as chaplain to the Mater Hospital from 1948-54, until ill health forced him to retire to Pymble in 1955. He remained in poor health, and had a sad time for the remaining twelve years of his life. He spent a long time in the military hospital at Concord. Then, as age and sickness increased, he lost his bearings. Eventually he went to St John of God Hospital Richmond, NSW) and stayed there until he died.
Loughnan was one of the best original thinkers of the Australian province, and a brilliant philosopher, but highly strung, somewhat touchy and quarrelsome. His best work seemed to have been accomplished at Newman College, despite being under a very difficult and susceptible superior He worked in the university departments of history and philosophy.
In his later years his peculiarities became rather more pronounced and for the last years of his life he was quite senile. He was reputed to be an excellent carpenter, and, if one wished to keep on good terms with him, it was necessary to visit him occasionally in his workshop and admire his handicraft.
Loughnan's magnum opus entitled “Metaphysics and Ethics”, was passed by the Jesuit censors and recommended for publication by the reader of the Oxford University Press, but never published. It was a major work on the thoughts of Bradley, Bosanquet and Alexander. Loughnan had original ideas, and few could match him intellectually or meet him in the cut and thrust of debate.
His final vows were delayed because superiors believed that he should have a more lowly opinion of his own judgement and have greater reverence for the traditional views of the Jesuit ascetical writers, and the observance of common life. Superiors could not easily cope with original thinkers. However, Loughnan did lack discretion and prudence, and did not like to be contradicted. He was a very active and athletic man, a good oarsman and an enthusiastic cyclist, but he often overtaxed himself and took little care of his health. Despite later physical infirmity, his great strength and endurance ensured a long life.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 17th Year No 3 1942
Australia :

Writing on 21st February last, Rev. Fr. Meagher Provincial, reports Fr. Basil Loughnan has gone off to be a Chaplain. We have three men Chaplains now. Fr. Turner was in Rabaul when we last heard of him and it would seem we shall not hear from him again for some time to come. Fr. F. Burke was in Greece and I don’t quite know where at the moment.

Johnston, Henry A, 1888-1986, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1482
  • Person
  • 17 October 1888-04 September 1986

Born: 17 October 1888, Downpatrick, County Down
Entered: 12 November 1906, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 24 October 1920
Final Vows: 01 February 1924, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 04 September 1986, St Joseph, Hawthorn, Melbourne, Australia

by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

Older brother of Thomas Johnston - RIP 1990

◆ Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University online :
Johnston, Henry Aloysius (1888–1986)
by J. Eddy
J. Eddy, 'Johnston, Henry Aloysius (1888–1986)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, published first in hardcopy 2007

Catholic priest; Catholic theologian

Died : 4 September 1986, Kew, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Henry Aloysius Johnston (1888-1986), Jesuit priest and seminary rector, was born on 17 October 1888 at Downpatrick, Northern Ireland, son of Henry Johnston, clerk, and his wife Kate, née Woods. A younger brother also became a Jesuit. Henry was educated at Mungret College, Limerick, and entered the novitiate of the Society of Jesus at Tullabeg College in 1906. He studied at the Royal (National after 1909) University of Ireland (BA, 1910; MA, 1912), gaining first-class honours in ancient classics in his masterate while also teaching at St Stanislaus College, Tullamore (1910-11). In 1912-14 he taught at Clongowes Wood College, Kildare. After reading philosophy at St Mary’s Hall, Stonyhurst, England (1914-16), he returned to Ireland to teach at Tullabeg (1916-18) and then studied theology at Milltown Park, where he was ordained priest on 24 October 1920. Back at Tullabeg, in 1922 he completed a doctorate in theology for the Gregorian University, Rome, although the degree was not conferred until 1963.

Responding to a call from Corpus Christi College, the recently established seminary at Werribee, in 1923 Johnston travelled to Victoria, and, after teaching at Xavier College, Melbourne, took up his appointment in 1925. Essentially a professor of philosophy, he also taught liturgy and music, and on occasion scripture and moral theology. In 1930 he became rector of the college, remaining so until 1947. Almost four hundred student priests came under his influence. Noted for his professional poise, practical equanimity and unshakeable self-confidence, he was a rigid, seemingly aloof disciplinarian: he treated all students alike and set an example of impeccable priestly behaviour. Industrious and orderly, without being pettifogging, he had a passion for detailed knowledge and accuracy.

The years at Werribee were the highlight of Johnston’s life in Australia, but his work extended beyond them. He taught (1949-53) at Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney, and then served as parish priest and superior (1954-56) at St Mary’s, North Sydney. In 1957 and again in 1961 he was tertian instructor at Sevenhill College, Clare, South Australia, and between those appointments taught Greek, Latin and history at Loyola College, Watsonia, Melbourne. From 1962 to 1966 he served as parish priest and superior at Immaculate Conception Church, Hawthorn. After further stints of teaching at Werribee (1967-70) and Watsonia (1970-73), he worked (1974) with the Marist Brothers at Campion College, Kew. He spent 1975-77 at the provincial’s residence, Hawthorn, before returning to St Mary’s (1978-82) as chaplain to the nearby Josephite Sisters.

Incisive of mind and tenacious of purpose, Johnston was a formidable Irish gentleman, scholar and cleric. A passion for knowledge and accuracy also informed his work as a polemicist, a writer of apologetic tracts, and a radio personality. His somewhat steely smile and halo of tightly curled white hair gave him a special aura. He maintained an iceberg calm and relentless logic at all times. Yet, although he appeared reserved, even cold, he could be counted on for sympathetic advice. He had a respect for individuality, if within strictly defined boundaries. His popular publications included Plain Talks on the Catholic Religion (1936), A Critic Looks at the Catholic Church (1944) and A Seed That Grew (1956), a history of North Sydney parish. Father Henry Johnston died on 4 September 1986 at Kew and was buried in Boroondara cemetery.

Select Bibliography
Corpus Christi, no 1, 1962, p 46, no 2, 1967, p 163, no 3, 1974, p 25
Jesuit Life, no 22, 1986, p 27
private information and personal knowledge.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Henry Johnston was a most remarkable man. It was not that he had any single great achievement his achievements were doing everything he undertook well. He possessed the characteristics of many Northern Irishmen and had an acute, incisive mind and a remarkable tenacity of purpose that showed itself in every undertaking, whether it was the mastery of some subject of study, the conduct of a parish, or a game of tennis or golf.
He said that as a young man he had developed a stomach ulcer. It is hard for those who knew him well to believe that any ulcer would have the temerity to attack his innermost regions but in any case, his physician prescribed a rigid diet of food that he obediently and equally rigidly observed for the rest of his many years. His breakfast of a poached egg and a cup of milk was never changed and seemed almost symbolic of his life. He invariably had an afternoon rest and retired at night at 10.00 pm and nothing, absolutely nothing, was allowed to interfere with this practice.
He was a man who was nearly always logically right, but was often psychologically wrong. He did not show much compassion or feelings for people or situations. He would inform unenlightened celebrants of the Eucharist of the number of rubrics they had broken during their celebration. Then was surprised when they expressed their disapproval of his criticism. This he could not understand - he thought that they would want to be enlightened.
Johnston accepted every challenge with zest and proceeded to meet it. He regretted not learning to play the piano because he believed he would have been good at it! Every moment was spent in profitable work. When his abstemious meal was finished and there was still someone reading in the refectory he practised his shorthand, taking down what was read, writing with his finger on the table. Even at the community recreation he was continually checking conversation by referring to a dictionary or encyclopaedia, or some other reference book, even if it was only the railway timetable. He had a passion for knowledge and accuracy.
Through the years he had passing interests. At Werribee he was an avid ornithologist, so cats, because of their known proclivities in this area, were a discouraged species. But this could scarcely be believed by the scholastics who had observed - some would say suffered from -his feline preferences when he was at Pymble and Watsonia. No one ever knew Henry Johnston to be flustered or to lose his calm in any situation. He was a great polemicist, not only in his written defences of the faith, but also on the Catholic Evidence platforms in Melbourne and Sydney. He argued with an iceberg calm and relentless logic, and mostly with a rather deadly smile. He pushed the sale of his books and pamphlets with the persistence of a second hand car salesman because he knew they were good for the buyer. He had a Pauline respect for the goods he passed on.
Johnston entered the Jesuits, 12 November 1906, and was ordained, 24 October 1920. He was later sent to Australia, and from 1925, spent 27 years at the regional seminary at Werribee, seventeen as rector, 1930-47. These years probably mark the highlight of his life. He taught, at various times, most theological subjects. He had an MA in classics from the National University of Ireland, and a doctorate in theology from the Roman Gregorian University that he used to good purpose in writing “Plain Talks on the Catholic Religion” and “A Critic Looks at the Catholic Church”. His last unpublished work was a refutation of the validity of Anglican Orders.
Johnston's impact on priests ordained for the dioceses of Victoria and beyond was incalculable. In his years at Werribee, nearly 400 priests came within the sphere of his influence, about 100 of whom predeceased him. Johnston had a great respect for the priests of Corpus Christi. He followed their progress with interest and never failed to write a congratulatory and encouraging letter to every student on the occasion of a priestly silver jubilee.
One of his great strengths as rector was that he had no favourites among the students. They stood in awe of him. Undemonstrative to a marked degree, he appeared to be reserved and distant even cold. But if one brought a personal problem to him one was assured of a sympathetic hearing and sound advice. He is recorded as saying that he found it very hard to say “no” to people. There were those who thought he should have found it easier with the passage of time because he had had so much practice at it. T
he spirituality he fostered among the students was based on their becoming men of God. In his prayer life, his disciplined commitment to both his priesthood and religious vocation, and his devotion to the Mass and to the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, he clearly showed the seminarians the way. Johnston made himself an authority on many subjects. One such discipline was the Sacred Liturgy. He took his usual pains to master the subject and did all in his power to instil into the students a practical knowledge of, and a reverence for, the liturgy. He embraced the post-conciliar liturgy with equal enthusiasm. His faith in the Church and his transparent obedience had no limits.
He held high office among the Jesuits for many years, as rector of Canisius College, Pymble, 1949-53, and Loyola College, Watsonia, 1958-60, as well as parish priest of North Sydney, 1954-56, and Hawthorn, 1962-66. He also gave talks on the Catholic Hour in Melbourne, and was frequently requested to give spiritual retreats. In later years he taught theology at Werribee, 1967-73, and from 1978-82 he was chaplain to St Joseph's Convent, Mount St, North Sydney. His Final residence was a hostel, St Raphael's, Kew. Johnston succeeded John Fahy as tertian instructor in 1957, and was heavily involved in retreat giving and spiritual direction. Over 56 years, he preached 306 retreats to every sort of person, from school children to bishops. His spirituality was traditional, centred on Jesus Christ, acknowledging the need to surrender oneself to God, but also strong on the need for the discipline of human passions. He was intellectual, logical and precise in his directions, without sentimentality or affection.
He believed that joy in the spiritual life was not gained without humility and effort. Perfection in all human activities enabled God to be generous, but imperfections 'might be the beginning of the path to hell for a religious.
He Liked to emphasis the military metaphor in spirituality. The spiritual quest required a “state of war” with oneself He taught that the good Jesuit needed detachment (indifferences, obedience, humility and charity : “I must strip myself of everything and know myself in my nothingness”. 'We naturally love notice, praise, esteem. We must convince Ours that this is not wise or good”. The cross appeared to be all important in Johnston's spirituality.
He did not believe that human friendship was important if Christ was a friend, and that the necessity of human friendships could be exaggerated. In his own life he was experienced as remote and austere, but the depth of his learning and the breadth of his experience with people gave him the ability to give logical and sensible solutions to problems both spiritual and human. The apparent correctness of his advice appeared to make up for his lack of human warmth, at least with non-Jesuits.
The virtues of fear and love were both presented in his talks, but they were presented in such a cold manner that fear became the predominant message He taught that the good Jesuit was one who was interested in prayer, obedience, hard work, and reverence towards others. The preaching of joy in life, or the idea of malting allowances for human weakness did not appear in Johnston’s dictionary. Other Jesuits respected him, but they could not accept his joyless spirituality and lack of human approachability. He was not believed to be a model for younger Jesuits. lt would be hard to meet his like again and no one would be in more complete agreement with this than Johnston himself.
He was remarkable priest, an outstanding spiritual director, a dedicated religious, who encouraged and inspired by his example, a noted scholar, and a leading apologist.

Note from George Collopy Entry
When Henry Johnston had to attend a conference in Rome, he was appointed Acting Parish Priest at St Mary’s, Sydney, and he was later confirmed as Parish Priest.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 61st Year No 4 1986


Fr Henry Johnston (1888-1906-1986) (Australia)

Fr Johnston's requiem Mass was Melbourne. Archbishop Little presided, bishops along with Jesuit and diocesan priests, many of them former students of Fr Johnston's. Under the headline, “One of our best-known priests”, Fr William Daniel, Superior of the Jesuit Curia of the Australian Province, paid a fine tribute to Fr Johnston in this statement to the press:

As a Jesuit in Australia, Fr Johnston filled many offices, but is best remembered for his 27 years as a professor in the seminary at Werribee, Victoria.
Born in Downpatrick, Ireland, he was of two brothers to become Jesuits. Both men had considerable talents and that characteristic Northern Ireland acuteness of mind and tenacity of purpose.
Henry Johnston, SJ was in his time a great polemicist. He debated matters of faith on the Catholic Evidence Guild platforms in Sydney and Melbourne. During the 1930s and 1940s he conducted the Question Box and gave talks on the Catholic Radio Hour in Melbourne. He published pamphlets in abundance, but his only books were “Plain talks on the Catholic religion” (a book unequalled in time for clarity and the exactness of its teaching), "A critic looks at the Catholic and Catholic Church”, and a history of the parish of North Sydney.
No one ever knew Fr Johnston to be ruffled or angered by controversy. He approached every undertaking, whether it was a debate or a game of tennis or golf, with an iceberg calm and the application of logic. Urbanity marked his words and actions. Uncharity was as alien to him as a display of emotion or yielding of position.
He professed sacred scripture, philosophy and moral theology, and indeed everything else as need arose. He and the concelebrants included seven
was rector in several Jesuit houses of celebrated in St Patrick's cathedral, study, parish priest in two large parishes, and instructor of tertians ... Fr Johnston retained an extraordinarily youthful intellect, and accepted every new task as an enjoyable challenge, whether it was in sacred studies,liturgical music, or golf. He was not happy until he had mastered each new skill. He carried on his labours, writing and lecturing, right up until his last few days, when he suffered impairment of sight and eventually its loss.
It is no exaggeration to say that Fr Henry Johnston is a legend among the clergy of Victoria, so many of whom he helped to form. His achievements and foibles are still spoken of at many a clergy gathering. His life was one of dedicated service and scholarship. His last years of acceptance of his failing one faculties were borne with the same calm had marked the course of his long life.

Under the heading, “Fr Johnston: men tor to hundreds of priests, laity”, another Australian newspaper article describes Fr Johnston:
The late Jesuit Fr Henry Johnston its influenced at least four hundred priests and countless lay people - non-Catholic - during his eighty years in the Society of Jesus and 66 years as a priest.
Dean F M Chamberlin, homilist at the requiem Mass, said that in 1923 Fr Johnston came to Australia, where he exercised a remarkable influence for two-thirds of the present century.
On his arrival he taught English and Latin at Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne. He had already won example. bachelor's and master's degrees with first-class honours in Ancient Classics at the National University of Ireland, followed by a doctorate in sacred theology at the Gregorian University, Rome.
In 1925 he took up an appointment to the professorial staff of the regional seminary at Corpus Christi College, Werribee, and was to remain there for a period of 24 years, 18 of them as period of 24 years, 18 of them as rector for three successive terms. In the early 1940s, when the professor of moral theology and later the professor of sacred scripture both fell ill, he calmly and successfully professed both these courses for a period of four to five years. Later he was to return to Werribee 1967 through 1969, to profess natural theology, rational psychology, sacred scripture and biblical history. By the time he left Werribee for a second time, he was in his 82nd year. .
Fr Johnston's finest and happiest years were spent among diocesan priests and seminarians. It was for this reason that the Jesuit fathers asked that someone from among the diocesan clergy should act as homilist at his requiem.
Students stood in considerable awe of this markedly undemonstrative, reserved and distant man, but came to know that they could always expect a sympathetic hearing and sound advice when they confided their problems to him. He is recorded as saying that he found it very difficult to say “no” to people. There were those who thought he should have found it easier with the passage of time, he gained so much practice at it!
That our futures were in our own hands was underlined by his parting words at the end of the scholastic year. “No one”, he used to say, “is expected back”. His repeated exhortation was that each of us should strive to become a homo Dei. If we have failed to scale the heights, it was through no failure on his part to present them both by word and example.
By his prayer life, by his disciplined commitment to both his priesthood and his religious vocation, and by his devotion to the Mass and to the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, he clearly showed us the way. His clarity of thought and inexorable logic were frightening to the student whom he left foundering in his wake - as the homilist had reason to recall more than 45 years later.
He made the utmost use of time and brought his self-discipline to bear on studies, so that his intense application gave him knowledge of subjects in which he lacked formal training. Although he had no musical training, he made himself self an authority on Gregorian chant, and was professor of sacred music during his years at the seminary.
Likewise he made himself an authority on sacred liturgy. He took his usual pains to master the subject, and did all in his power to instil into the students a practical knowledge of and a reverence for the liturgy. He embraced the postconciliar liturgy with equal enthusiasm. His faith in the Church and his transparent obedience had no limits.
He showed the same tenacity in the pursuit of his hobbies - if indeed they can be called hobbies - whether of astronomy or of golf, which latter he took up when in his sixties. He studied the instruction manuals written by the experts and practised the shots - some say for as long as twelve months - before playing a formal round. Came the day, and to the amazement of his playing companions, he parred the first three holes, On receiving their congratulations, he drily observed: Well, that's what you're supposed to do, isn't it? Said the homilist: I can hear him saying it.
He was parish priest and superior at St Mary's, North Sydney, in the mid-1950s, and was appointed parish priest of the Immaculate Conception parish, Hawthorn, Melbourne, in 1962, when he was in his 74th year, and brought to the administration of that parish in the subsequent five years a zeal and enthusiasm which would have done credit to a man half his age. He was an outstanding example of a dedicated pastor.
After that he had various responsibilities within the Society of Jesus, and served as chaplain to the Marist Brothers noviciate at Macedon, and later still to the Sisters of St Joseph, Mount Street, North Sydney, relinquishing this latter post in his 95th year.
Over a period of years he suffered the disability of failing eyesight, which must have been a severe trial to a man of his academic and literary bent.

Lyons, Francis, 1883-1933, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1612
  • Person
  • 30 November 1883-11 April 1933

Born: 30 November 1883, County Limerick
Entered: 23 September 1901, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1916, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows 02 February 1924, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 11 April 1933, St Ignatius College, Manresa, Norwood, Adelaide, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Uncle of : Francis Hayes - LEFT 1932; John Hayes - RIP 1945 Burma

by 1905 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1909

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Francis Lyons entered the Society at Tullabeg, Ireland, 23 September 1901, and after his juniorate there, studied philosophy at Jersey, 1904-07, and taught at Galway for a year He was sent to Australia in 1908, and taught at Riverview, 1908-13, also being involved with the boarders. He returned to Ireland and Milltown Park for theology, 1913-17, taught at Galway, 1917-20, and completed tertianship at Tullabeg, 1920-21.
Lyons taught at Clongowes, 1922-29, and returned to Australia and the parish of Norwood 1929-33. His health declined during this time.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 8th Year No 3 1933
Obituary :
Father Frank Lyons
Father Frank Lyons died at Adelaide, Australia, on Wednesday, 12th April, 1933.

His life in the Society was on the quiet, hidden side. Not that he did not do full work. He did, and did it well. But it was done in such a peaceful, unobtrusive way that it attracted small attention even from those with whom he lived. He was as faithful as the very best to his prayers and to the charge entrusted to him, and the influence he unconsciously exerted had such a pleasing, soothing effect that he deservedly won the sincere esteem and affection of his companions. Indeed, those that knew him most intimately say that the two leading characteristics of his life were his talent for making friends and his cheerful resignation in much suffering. He certainly needed the latter. Frail and delicate as a boy in the Crescent, he never knew what good health was, much less robust health, in the Society. No epidemic spared him. To a weak constitution was allied a very sensitive mind. None but his intimate friends knew how greatly he was disheartened by criticism, how greatly inspired by a word of appreciation. Yet there was no murmuring, no complaint, And that continued on to the very end. In his last illness he was visited by two nun friends, and this is what one of them writes : “Some time ago he went to Calvary Hospital for observation. The result was pronounced to be a malignant growth. We visited him at the hospital. He was so bright and cheerful that I did not for a moment think he knew the result of the examination. But he knew more about it than we did. He is greatly missed by all with whom he came in contact, his gentle and unassuming manner winning all hearts”.
But a letter written to his mother during his last illness will show us best of all what kind of a man, and what kind of a religious Father Frank was : I am terribly sorry for your sake, far more than for my own, to have to tell you that I am not at all well, and have been in hospital for some time. I have made many friends, and they have been extremely good to me........ Well now, when all is said and done, there remains the Holy Will of God for us all. We must obey it, and it is best for us. We must all go sooner or later, and I have tried to be ready for it all my life. It is a great joy to be surrounded with all the consolations of religious life. The world and its ties and interests have no hold on one who gave up everything long ago
This is one of the times we are rewarded for the sacrifices we have made.”
Father Frank Lyons was born in Limerick, 30th November 1883, educated at the Crescent (S.J.), where he won an exhibition in each of the four Grades, and began his noviceship at Tullabeg 23rd September, 1901. After a year's Juniorate in same place he went to Jersey for Philosophy, when it was over he spent a year in Galway teaching, and then sailed for Australia in 1908. He resided for five years at Riverview and returned to Ireland for Theology at Milltown in 1913. Theology over he worked in Galway until he began Tertianship at Tullabeg, 1920. At the beginning of the following year he was “ad dispos. R. P. Provincialis”. From 1922 to 1928 he did excellent work in Clongowes, where he was a favourite confessor with the boys. Then, after a year in Belvedere, he went back to Australia, where as already stated, he died, 12th April, 1933. R.I.P.

Gubbins, James, 1889-1946, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/168
  • Person
  • 11 February 1889-29 September 1946

Born: 11 February 1889, Kilfinane, County Limerick
Entered: 07 September 1906, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1921, Milltown Park. Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1924, Sacxred Heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 29 September 1946, St Vincent's Hospital, Dublin

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

by 1911 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1912 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 21st Year No 4 1946
Obituary :
Fr. James Gubbins (1889-1906-1946)

Fr. James Gubbins died peacefully in St. Vincent's hospital, Dublin, at 9.15 p.m. Sunday, September 28th, conscious to within a short time of his death. He had been in hospital since July 5th.
He was born on February 11th, 1889, at Cush House, Kilfinane, Co. Limerick, and educated at Mungret College. On September 7th, 1906, he entered the Society at Tullabeg, where he spent his two years noviceship and two years juniorate, under Fr. James Murphy and Fr. Michael Browne. He was sent to Louvain for his philosophy, but as he got there an attack of rheumatic fever which nearly proved fatal, he was changed to Stonyhurst where he did the remainder of his course. His five years colleges were done in Clongowes and Mungret, and his theology at Milltown Park, where he was ordained at the end of his third year, on August 15th, 1921, by Dr. Edward Byrne, who had been made Archbishop only a short time before. He made his tertianship at Tullabeg, 1922-3, under Fr. Welsby.
His first status as Priest was to the Crescent, where he spent the following nineteen years, as master, games-prefect, and as Rector from 1934 to 1942. He was an energetic, practical man, and in ordinary intercourse or in business, friendly, obliging, interested in people and their concerns. He made acquaintances quickly, and very many of these became friends. He had a wide circle of relations and kinsfolk in Limerick, and in a short time he came to occupy a very distinctive position there. He was one of the most popular and esteemed priests in the city and county, both with clergy, secular and regular, and with the laity. As rector he showed remarkable gifts of administration. The church is perhaps his chief monument at the Crescent. He found no difficulty in getting patrons and benefactors to enable him to carry out his plan of interior decoration which has made it the rich and elegant church that it is. The great advance of the school in numbers and prestige is due in great measure to him also. So popular did he become in Limerick, and so associated with the life of the city, religious, social and educational, that some of Ours used to say jokingly that his removal from Limerick would be likely to cause a “schism”.
In 1942 he came to Belvedere as Rector and in a short time had won his way to the confidence and trust of boys and parents. It was impossible not to be attracted by his friendliness and his practical, real, interest in all that concerned the school, the studies and games of the boys, the activities of the Past, and not least the newsboys' club. In 1938 he had been appointed consultor of the Province. In 1943 he was elected Chairman of the Catholic Headmasters' Association. He was thus soon in the full tide of successful activity and popularity and seemed likely to become in Dublin the figure he was in Limerick.
But serious heart trouble - perhaps the effect of his rheumatic fever - began to manifest itself, and he was ordered to rest. He did not improve, and it was decided to relieve him of the responsibilities of Rector. He was transferred to Gardiner Street as Procurator of the house. But his condition grew steadily worse. He was brought to St. Vincent's hospital in July. He knew he was gravely ill yet did not give up hope of recovery. He was always bright and courageous and full of trust in God and resignation to His will. Those who visited him in these last weeks found him the same Fr. James Gubbins, cheerful, bright and in high spirits. He had changed much in appearance, but he remained to the last the same courageous, friendly spirit he always was. He showed also the deep but unobtrusive piety which was characteristic of him.
Fr. Tyndall, Superior of the Residence of St. Francis Xavier, was celebrant of the Solemn Requiem Mass which took place on October 1st, and Fr. Vice-Provincial said the prayers at the graveside at Glasnevin. The church was crowded for the Office and Mass, many of the congregation being friends from Limerick. Not the least of the tributes paid to him came from the newsboys, who asked that some benches be reserved for them in the church.
On normal calculation Fr. Gubbins might be considered to have twenty years of fruitful activity before him. With his gifts and experience he could have given valuable service to the Province. His financial talents would have been very useful in the years to come. But God judged otherwise and found him ripe and called him to his eternal rest. With those who knew him well and especially with his contemporaries in the Society, the memory of his friendly, radiant personality will long remain vivid. May he rest in peace!

Deevy, John A, 1887-1969, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/800
  • Person
  • 15 June 1887-10 March 1969

Born: 15 June 1887, Waterford City, County Waterford
Entered: 07 September 1906, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1920, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1924, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 10 March 1969, Regional Hospital, Limerick

Part of the Mungret College, Co Limerick community at the time of death.

by 1911 at Cividale del Friuli, Udine Italy (VEN) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 44th Year No 2 1969

Obituary :

Fr John Aloysius Deevy SJ (1887-1969)

For some months before his death Fr. John Deevy had been growing weaker, and experiencing greater difficulty in walking. He had got permission to say Mass sitting down, and as long as he could make his way to the little Altar near his room, even by pushing before him a chair on which he leaned, he clung to his daily Mass. But that period soon passed and he came to need the constant professional care which he could get only in a hospital. His last weeks were spent in the Regional, near Mungret, where he died on Saturday March 10th. He was buried from the College Chapel after a concelebrated Requiem Mass, in which the Rector of Mungret, Fr. Senan Timoney, and ten other priests, chiefly from other houses, took part in the presence of Fr. Provincial. After the Gospel the Rector made a short address in which he dwelt on the two chief devotions of Fr. Deevy's life : devotion to his daily Mass, and his devotion to Mungret. He mentioned that Fr. Deevy, before his last illness had declared that he missed his daily Mass only twice in his life of forty nine years as a priest.
The ceremonies of the Requiem were carried out impressively with the boys choir singing hymns to the accompaniment of two guitars. Afterwards the boys lined the avenue from the chapel to the graveyard where Fr. Deevy was laid to rest among the fellow Jesuits with whom he had lived.
John Aloysius Deevy was born in Waterford on June 15th, 1887. He belonged to a very well known Waterford family, which consisted of four boys and nine girls. None of his sisters married, only one survived him and was at his funeral. He was a layboy at Mungret from 1903 to 1906, when he entered Tullabeg with seven other companions. It was a small vintage, but all of the eight persevered in their vocation and four of them predeceased him. From the beginning he showed himself the John Deevy that so many were afterwards to respect and to like, bright, cheerful, utterly sincere and honourable. The Master of Novices, Fr. James Murphy, at once perceived the sterling qualities of Brother Deevy, and held him up as a model of the spirit he sought to inspire in his novices, which he expressed in his often repeated words : “What is right is right, what is wrong is wrong and that settles the matter”. You could not know John Deevy for any length of time without coming to admire his sincerity and straightness, and his unswerving sense of honour and truthfulness.
His constant flood of energy, and his zeal for what was good, were not always appreciated by less vigorous companions. He was a formidable companion at the pump. For a later and softer generation it should be explained that pumping water up to tanks in the garret was a part of the manual work of the novices. It was also a test of solid virtue. Br. Deevy would throw himself into this back-breaking activity while his companion, wilting over the other handle of the pump, would feel inclined to greet the ardour as an excess of zeal. At the oars in the boats on the canal, on the long summer afternoons, he rowed like a Roman galley slave.
He did his Juniorate in Tullabeg, under Fr. John Keane and then went to Cividale in Italy for his Philosophy. His colleges were done in Belvedere, Mungret and Clongowes. He was an excellent teacher of Latin and, especially, of Mathematics; he had a gift of expounding clearly that severe discipline, if not of enlivening it. From 1918 to 1922 he did his theology at Milltown Park where he was ordained on August 15th, 1920, earlier than the canonical date, because he had been delayed by the war. He did his tertianship under Fr. Bridge, of the English province from 1922 to 1923 at Tullabeg,
For the first years of his priesthood he circulated around the colleges and everywhere he was true to the image he had shown in his years at Tullabeg, friendly, bright, energetic, a thoroughly devout priest but without a trace of smugness or solemnity. After some years he began to be more engaged in administration for which his energetic and practical temperament fitted him. He was changed from the classroom and allotted to the duties of minister, procurator and Superior. Mungret, Tullabeg, Milltown Park, the Crescent, and Emo Park saw him successively. His years at Emo, twelve of them, deserve a special mention. He was Procurator, then Superior and finally Rector. In these positions he came to know intimately the secular clergy of the diocese of Kildare and Leighlin and particularly those who lived about Emo. He was at once accepted as one of themselves, and was soon a welcome and frequent guest at their dinners. He was at home in their presbyteries. The gossip, the politics of the diocese were openly discussed in his presence. And he contributed to the gaiety of the dinner table by his large stock of clerical stories which he narrated with the skill of a born raconteur. As a Superior he had a car at his disposal and he took a boyish delight in dashing into Portarlington and Portlaoise and further afield on errands or business or visits. The Society had opened Emo as a noviceship house in 1930 and were timidly making their way into the good will of the priests of the diocese. Fr. Arthur Murphy, the P.P. of Emo had been our sponsor there, and to him we owe, more than to anyone else, our settlement in the diocese. But Fr. Deeyy's contact with the priests did great service in changing toleration into genuine friendliness. Fr. Deevy was the least “Jesuitical” of men, as defined in the Concise Oxford dictionary, a “dissembling person, a prevaricator”. On everyone who met him he left the impression that he was a man whose word was as good as his bond, whose speech was “yea and nay”.
By temperament he was active and practical and took naturally to administration. He liked working with his hands and was glad to do odd jobs; he spent a good deal of time tinkering with things. He was not a reading man and would not often be seen in his room reading. That was a pity as he was intelligent and had a clear and vigorous mind. It was a pity also that he so early in his priestly life allowed his administrative activities to take him from pastoral work and, especially, from retreat-giving, a ministry which his deep spirituality, his good judgment, his kindness and his bright manner fitted him for to a high degree.
In 1944 Fr. Deevy returned to Tullabeg as Procurator and in 1953 he was assigned, in the same office, to Mungret; it was his last change and it was fitting that the end of his life should be spent in the place where he had made his first contact with the Society. The wheel of his changes had come full circle. For the years left him he was the same useful worker;, the same bright popular community man. He had little contact with the boys, they only remember the white-haired old priest who was so regular with his Mass. A good part of these years. was spent in compiling the Mungret Record, a list of all the past Mungret boys with their places of origin and their years in the College, It was a work which demanded a great deal of minute research in the Mungret Annual, old lists of the Prefects of Studies, of the Procurator, in the account books. It was done with the thoroughness and accuracy that were characteristic of all his work. The typed volume will remain as a very useful book of reference as well as a monument to Fr. Deevy's love of Mungret.
His death was felt throughout the province with a very genuine regret, by those who had ever lived with him. One of these, one who made his acquaintance on the 7th of September 1906, who drove him on the same sidecar to the noviceship, renders in these pages his sincere, if inadequate, tribute, his Ave atque Salve to a Very near friend of a lifetime. Ar dheis-Dé go raibh a anam.
Two of Fr. Deevy's sisters deserve a brief mention, Tessa was a well known playwright. Many of her plays were presented with success at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin and outside Ireland. Another, Agnes, entered the Carmelite monastery, Delgany, where she was known as Mother Mary of the Incarnation and was Mother Prioress for many years. She was revered and loved by her community and those who knew her still cherish the memory of her outstanding charity and holiness.

Cuffe, Frederick, 1887-1951, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/107
  • Person
  • 10 June 1887-06 April 1951

Born: 10 June 1887, Dublin
Entered: 01 February 1907, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1920
Final Vows: 02 February 1924, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 06 April 1951, Dublin

Part of St Mary's community, Emo, County Laois at time of his death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ.

by 1911 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1912 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 26th Year No 3 1951

Obituary :

Fr. Cuffe was born in Dublin on June 10th, 1887. He was educated in the College of the Josephite Fathers, Ghent, Belgium, and at Clongowes. He entered the Society in 1907, and after his Juniorate, studied philosophy at Louvain and St. Mary's Hall, Stonyhurst. As a scholastic he taught in Clongowes, Belvedere and Mungret, besides being Third Line Prefect in Clongowes and Third Club Prefect in Mungret. He studied theology at Milltown Park, where he was ordained in 1920. After his Tertianship at Tullabeg (1922-23), he was appointed Vice-Superior in the Apostolic School, Mungret, a post which he held until 1933. He was then transferred to Clongowes where, in addition to his duties as master, he had charge of the People's Church. In 1943 he was appointed Spiritual Father at St. Mary's, Emo.
During the last few years of his life he suffered from heart trouble, which steadily became more acute. Shortly before Easter of the present year he went to stay with his family at Rathnew, Co. Wicklow, where, it was hoped, a period of complete rest and quiet would revive his fast-ebbing strength, But he was soon attacked with congestion of the lungs. His case became so serious that he was transferred to a nursing home in Leeson St., Dublin, where, fortified with the rites of the Church, he peacefully died at about 7 p.m. on Friday, April 6th.
Fr. Cuffe's personality and character, simple, straightforward, honest, devout, answered in a striking manner to the description of “the just man” in Holy Scripture. For him life had no brain-bewildering, heart-aching problems, but was a plain matter-of-fact business of ordinary duties to be faithfully performed day in day out. Be was of a courteous, cheerful disposition, a pleasant companion to live with, free from every trace of moodiness or low spirits, scrupulously exact in doing the work assigned to him, and ever ready to help in times of stress and strain. He was easily disturbed, it is true, when things went wrong, but impatience was but a passing “shadow of annoyance”, swiftly fleeting across the sunny landscape of his spirit. He was, indeed, incapable of deep and enduring resentment, and I doubt if he ever said a hard word about any of his brethren.
His religious life was cast in the same mould. Upon the deep spiritual foundation laid down by him in the noviceship, he raised the solid structure of his holy life as a Jesuit. The performance of his spiritual exercises, observance of rule, progress in virtue, he never failed to regard as duties of strict obligation, which he fulfilled with edifying exactitude. During the last few months of his life on earth, when physical debility rendered him incapable of even the lightest work, he was most assiduous in prayer, with the rosary or Dolour beads constantly in his hands. Death came to him peacefully; and I can well believe that he answered the Master's call with unruffled tranquility, as though it were part of the day's routine.
To simple-hearted, faithful servants such as Fr. “Freddy” Cuffe Our Lord Himself gives testimony : “Of such is the Kingdom of God”.

Downey, George, 1888-1972, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1208
  • Person
  • 01 January 1888-13 June 1972

Born: 01 January 1888, Molong, NSW, Australia
Entered: 30 July 1909, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Final Vows: 15 August 1923, St Aloysius, Sevenhill, Australia
Died: 13 June 1972, Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
He was the youngest of a large family. Eight members of his family entered religious life, and he was the last to die. His early education was with the Mercy Sisters at Molong and then at Sydney Technical College, before he entered at Loyola Greenwich in 1909 aged 21. He then finished his Noviciate at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg in Ireland. He found the Novitiate difficult.

In his earlier years after First Vows he found himself sent to St Ignatius College Riverview, St Aloysius Sevenhill and Xavier College Kew mainly doing domestic duties.

1921-1951 He was sent to Sevenhill as an understudy at the winery and as infirmarian. He became the first Australian winemaker at Sevenhill and a very successful one. He succeeded Brother Boehmer, and he was able to bring some order into the affairs of the winery. The original aim of the Sevenhill cellars was to produce sacramental wine, but gradually other grapes were grown and different classes of table wine produced.
The cellars were always expected to more than pay their way and began to be seen as a Province milk cow. Not only did the cellar master have to be a vigneron, he had to be an engineer and administrator, with an ability to control staff and see that the interstate sellers were both capable and reliable. In addition he was to be a religious, a man of prayer. He preferred to work alone in running the cellars, free from interference of Superiors, whose job, he considered, was to look after running the Parish. During one of his spells in hospital, an agriculturally minded Superior grubbed out some acres of his claret vines in order to grow potatoes, and this didn’t help his recovery.
The liturgical highlight each year at Sevenhill was the Corpus Christi celebrations. George was also the choirmaster, and he directed combined choirs from local parishes. With an eye to the future, he had planted trees and shrubs to provide a setting for the outdoor Mass.
The Youth Club at Sevenhill was another activity of his, encouraging debates and public speaking among the young men. He was also a good musician and played the violin. He retained an interest as a hobby in woodwork. The altar in domestic chapel was one of his constructions, but one of his joys was the carving of delicate bridges for his violin. He also had the companionship of many cats, whose presence at the winery was important to keep down the mice.
He was conservative in his thinking, the old and trusted way was always the best, whether it was the equipment at the winery or the Latin Mass. It was worth directing him to something in conflict with these views just to watch his reaction - a delicate handling and then a little sniff, which was his comment.
1951-1972 While at Canisius College Pymble he could be heard during the evening meal playing the violin, often sad music which reflected his decreasing ability to play as he had once done.

he was a gentleman, quiet and private, though he enjoyed telling his stories in his old age. He was a man of sound intelligence, highly sensitive and he possessed a well-developed appreciation of good music.

O'Mara, Richard, 1884-1977, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1926
  • Person
  • 29 June 1884-07 November 1977

Born: 29 June 1884, Adelaide, Australia
Entered: 07 September 1907, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1920
Final Vows: 15 August 1923, St Aloysius College, Milsons Point, Sydney, Australia
Died: 07 November 1977, Little Sisters of the Poor, Drummoyne, Sydney - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the St Mary’s, Miller St, Sydney, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05 April 1931

Younger brother of Thomas O’Mara - RIP 1933

by 1911 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1916 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
For many years, Dick O’Mara was probably one of the best known figures in North Sydney. He spent 45 years there and walked its streets daily. He was a large figure, always well turned out in the old tradition of the urbane parish priest, with walking cane, mixing dignity with friendly affability.
For twenty years he was superior and parish priest, and for most of the rest of his life he was minister. For the remaining years of his priestly career, he was minister at St Aloysius' College or St Francis Xavier's, Lavender Bay, both of them within the North Sydney parish.
He was responsible for the re-building of St Mary's Church, the residences for sisters and brothers and the large Manresa Hall, These buildings were financed largely by bingo and boxing, sympathy for which stemmed from his character and background.
Dick O’Mara was one of two brothers who entered the Society, his brother Tom dying at Burke Hall in 1933. They were born in Adelaide into a family closely associated with horse racing and their early years were spent around the stables. O’Mara was as close lipped as a trainer and as shrewd as a bookmaker, with a bonhomie that would have been an enviable asset for either.
Members of his community who wished to know more about parish finances or projects were driven nearer and nearer to nervous breakdown according to the degree of their curiosity. His parishioners were not much the wiser as to where the money went.
He had a quaint sense of humour. He would engage in lively discussions on profound theological questions, but the problems always remained unsolved because he would extricate himself from all arguments by saying “we live in a world of mystery”.
O’Mara was possibly Australia's greatest exponent of the illogical. He had a great reputation for instructing converts. His instructions would make a theologian weep and drive a logician to self destruction. If any man was a living proof of the fact that people are not converted by human argument but by the action of the Spirit, it was O’Mara. Yet many families would praise him for the rediscovery of their faith.
O’Mara was a man reared in affluence and with wealth assured. who left behind the riches of this world, leading a life completely dedicated to his priestly and religious vocation and in kindly service to those committed to his care. His appearance of simplicity may have concealed shrewdness far above the ordinary, but his constant smile of kindliness was a true indication of his nature and was verified in all his works.

Page, Bernard F, 1877-1948, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/796
  • Person
  • 16 July 1877-30 November 1948

Born: 16 July 1877, Khishagur, Bengal, India
Entered: 01 March 1895, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Ordained: 26 July 1910, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1923, Stonyhurst College, Lancashire, England
Died: 30 November 1948, Petworth, Sussex, England - Australiae Province (ASL)

Chaplain in the First World War.

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1902 at Valkenburg Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1908 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1911 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1912 at St Wilfred's, Preston (ANG)
by 1917 Military Chaplain : 3rd Cavalry Field Ambulance and Brigade, BEF France
by 1918 Military Chaplain : No 2 Cavalry Field Ambulance, BEF France
by 1921 at St Luigi, Birkirkara, Malta (SIC) teaching
by 1922 at St Aloysius College, Oxford, England (ANG) working
by 1923 at St Wilfred’s Preston England (ANG) working

◆ Jesuits in Ireland :

JESUITICA: Answering back
Do Jesuits ever answer back? Our archives hold an exchange between Fr Bernard Page SJ, an army chaplain, and his Provincial, T.V.Nolan, who had passed on a complaint from an Irish officer that Fr Page was neglecting the care of his troops. Bernard replied: “Frankly, your note has greatly pained me. It appears to me hasty, unjust and unkind: hasty because you did not obtain full knowledge of the facts; unjust because you apparently condemn me unheard; unkind because you do not give me credit for doing my best.” After an emollient reply from the Provincial, Bernard softens: “You don’t know what long horseback rides, days and nights in rain and snow, little or no sleep and continual ‘iron rations’ can do to make one tired and not too good-tempered.”

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Bernard Page was born in India where his father was a judge, but from the age of seven lived in Glenorchy in Tasmania, from where he was sent to Xavier College as a boarder. In 1895 he entered the novitiate at Loyola Greenwich under Aloysius Sturzo. In mid-1898 he went to Xavier College as hall prefect and teacher, and appears to have been the founding editor of the Xaverian. By 1900 he ran the debating and drama, Page was a careful and competent photographer, and the photographic record of his time at Xavier is amongst the most valuable photos of the whole Irish Mission. He travelled to Europe, did philosophy at Valkenburg and was sent back to teaching at Clongowes and Belvedere, 1904-07. After tertianship Page served at Preston in England until 1914, and during that time requested a transfer to the English province, which was apparently refused. War chaplaincy followed, including a trip to the forces in Murmansk. He worked in a parish in Oxford, 1921-22, and from then until 1947 he served at St Walburge's parish in Preston. Page never considered himself Australian but maintained an interest in the work of the Society in Australia, and kept up contacts from his Xavier days.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 24th Year No 1 1949


Fr. Bernard Fullerton Page (1877-1895-1948) – Vice Province of Australia

Many members of our Province will remember well Fr. Page, who died recently in England, who belonged to the Vice-Province of Australia, was born at Khishagur, Bengal, India on 16th July, 1877 and began his noviceship at Sydney on 1st March, 1895. There also he did his juniorate but for pbilosophy went to Valkenburg. He began his theology at Louvain but completed the course at Milltown Park where he was ordained priest on 26th July, 1910. After finishing his tertianship, he joined the staff at St. Ignatius, Preston and was an army chaplain during the 1914-1918 war. After demobilisation, he was at St. Aloysius, Oxford in 1921 and in 1922 went to St. Walburge's, Preston where he remained until ill health compelled him to retire to Petworth in March, 1948. He was the editor of the Walburgian and was able to boast that even under war-time conditions, publication was never delayed. He was also the author of a Life of St. Walburge, “Our Story : The History of St. Walburge's Parish”, “The Sacristan's Handbook”, and “Priest's Pocket Ritual”. R.I.P.

O'Donoghue, Patrick, 1885-1949, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/327
  • Person
  • 09 May 1885-06 July 1949

Born: 09 May 1885, Mitchelstown, County Cork
Entered: 07 September 1907, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1917, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1923, Sacred Heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 06 July 1949, Armagh, County Armagh

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

by 1915 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Had studied 2 years of Theology in Maynooth and received Minor orders before entry

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 24th Year No 4 1949
Fr. Patrick O’Donoghue (1885-1807-1949)
He was born at Mitchelstown, Co. Cork, on 9th May, 1885. He was educated at St. Colman's, Fermoy, and entered Maynooth in 1902 where he studied philosophy for two years and theology for two. During his Maynooth course he secured high prizes in Church History, Elocution and Irish generally leading his class in the last mentioned subject. He entered the Society on 7th September, 1907 and had as Master of Novices, Fr. James Murphy for his first six months novitiate (Fr. James died on 22nd March, 1908). In the conspectus vitae written by novices shortly after their entry, Bro. O'Donoghue, as he then was, set down as his preference the giving of missions and retreats : “I should rather like teaching, but my great ambition would be preaching, giving missions and especially giving retreats to religious, students, etc.” This youthful ambition was destined to be splendidly realised.
After four years teaching at Crescent and Mungret Colleges he spent a year at Stonyhurst revising his philosophy, then passed to Milltown Park for theology, being ordained there on 31st July, 1917. From 1918 to 1931 he was teaching again at the Crescent and also for a good portion of that time engaged in church work, where his talent as preacher and lecturer got ample scope. In 1931 he joined the mission staff and from that time onward was engaged in the work of missions and retreats. He was Superior of the mission staff from 1942 till his death.
On Monday, 4th July of this year Fr. O'Donoghue travelled to Armagh to conduct the first week's clergy. retreat. He gave the usual. talks to the priests on the Tuesday, ending with a discourse on death, which touched his hearers deeply. The next morning he was awaited in the chapel for the morning talk, but when the President of the College went to fetch him he found him dead in the bathroom where he had already shaved. Solemn Requiem Mass was celebrated the next morning in the Cathedral, at which His Grace the Archbishop, Dr.
D'Alton, and the eighty priests on retreat attended. The Rector of Milltown and Fr. E. J. Coyne (who finished the priests' retreat) were also present.

An Appreciation :
From his earliest years in the Society Fr. O'Donoghue seemed to have his mind bent on becoming a useful preacher of the Catholic Faith. His assiduity in the preparation of his sermon matter was most remark able. Monsignor Benson used to say that, if he was to speak to a small country audience, he would give many hours to preparing his address. Father O'Donoghue was most diligent in collecting material for his sermons and retreats. He wrote out his sermons and meditations with great care. He was gifted with a deep resonant pleasing voice, which was a great asset to him in fulfilling his ambition. His broadcast talks one Lent on the Passion of Our Lord were listened to with rapt attention all over the country, and were highly praised by priests and laity alike. For some years in the latter part of his life, owing to acute heart trouble, he was forced to retire from an active and successful participation in the missions. He continued the work of organisation as Superior of the Mission Staff, until his death.
Fr. O'Donoghue - like Our Holy Father, St. Ignatius - took always a kindly and detailed interest in the doings of Ours it gave him the greatest joy to hear of their successful work. In his dealings with the members of his staff he was considerate and sympathetic, and was gifted with a saving sense of humour. He went to endless trouble in his correspondence, both with Parish Priests, to make the mission work smoothly, and with his fellow missioners to explain to them in detail the arrangements he had made, Like a good organiser, he left nothing to chance. When he was obliged to retire through ill health the Mission Staff suffered a great loss. Fr. O'Donoghue was most anxious to continue the work of giving priests' retreats. His zeal led him to make the journey to Armagh to give the Diocesan Retreat, and this was the occasion of his sudden and tragic death. He had done the work that the Lord had given him to do.

Ryan, Edward F, 1886-1928, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2077
  • Person
  • 07 February 1886-14 September 1928

Born: 07 February 1886, Dun Laoghaire, County Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1903, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1920
Final Vows: 02 February 1923, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 14 September 1928, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1912 at Valkenburg Netherlands (GER) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education was at Clongowes.

After his Novitiate he had six years of Juniorate, two of which included teaching other Juniors and he graduated MA in Classics, maintaining first place in his group throughout. These years were spent in Tullabeg for 5 years and then Milltown.
He was then sent to Valkenburg for Philosophy.
He made his Regency teaching at Clongowes for three years.
He then went to Milltown for Theology.
He finished his formation at Tullabeg making tertianship there and also serving as Socius to the Novice Master, and then continued in the latter position for two more years, and also being Minister for one of those.
He was then sent to Rathfarnham as Minister of Juniors for a year.
He was then sent to Mungret as Prefect of Studies.
1926 He was appointed Prefect of Studies at Belvedere. For the greater part of a year he did this job with great success, and then he was diagnosed with malignant cancer. In spite of every effort by doctors and great care, they were unable to halt the progress of the cancer and he died at St Vincent’s Hospital 14 September 1928.

He was a brilliant Classical scholar, but more importantly, Frank was a model of unostentatious holiness. He was as faithful to his religious duties as a novice. Kindness and charity were the characteristic virtues of his life. His gentleness did not interfere with his capacity to govern. Where Frank ruled, law and order reigned. Honest reasonable work was the order of the day. Everything was done gently and quietly. He left no pain, nor bitterness behind.

His death was met with great sorrow on the part of all who knew him.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 4th Year No 1 1928
Obituary :

Fr Edward (Frank) Ryan

On Friday Sept. 14th, feast of The Exaltation of the Holy Cross, death robbed the Irish Province of one of its most promising members. On that day Fr Frank Ryan died in Dublin, at the early age of 42.

Fr. Frank was born on the 7th Feb. 1886, educated at Clongowes, and entered the Society on Sept. 7th 1903. He got no less than six years Juniorate, five of them in Tullabeg and one in Milltown. However for two of these years he discharged with success the difficult task of teaching other Juniors. He won his MA in 1911, retaining the place he had held all through his University course - first in the Classical Group. Three years Philosophy at Valkenburg followed, and then three years teaching in Clongowes. A brilliant course of Theology at Milltown over, he went to Tullabeg for the Tertianship, acting during the year as Socius to the Master of Novices. This latter position he held for the next two years, discharging at the same time the duties of Minister. Then a year in charge of the Juniors at Rathfarnham, and another as Prefect of Studies at Mungret. In 1926 he was appointed Prefect of Studies at Belvedere. For the greater part of the year he did his work with pronounced success, and then the call came. He was attacked by malignant cancer. In spite of all that modern science could do, in spite of loving and intelligent care, the dread disease claimed another victim, and Frank passed to his reward from St. Vincent's hospital on the 14th Sept. 1928.
That he was a brilliant Classical scholar his University success abundantly proves, but, far better than this, Fr Frank was a model of unostentatious holiness. To the daily round of duties in the Society he retained to the end the regularity of a novice. Kindliness, charity of the right kind. was the characteristic virtue of his life. Yet this gentleness in no way impaired his efficiency. Where Fr Frank ruled law and order reigned, honest, reasonable work was the order of the day. And everything was done quietly. There were no earthquake shocks. He left no soreness, no bitterness behind in any of the departments over which he presided. He “kept the justice of the King; So vigorously yet mildly, that all hearts Applauded”. Very sincere sorrow, on the part of all who knew him, followed Fr Frank to his early grave. But he has not “altogether died”. He will long be remembered as a man who has shown us that brilliant success and thoroughgoing efficiency are very consistent with the greatest gentleness and kindliness of character. May he rest in peace.

A contemporary of his writes :
Fr Frank was only just finding his work and opportunity when God called him away. The years he spent as Socius at Tullabeg, even the years he spent at Rathfarnham, did not show him at his best. As Prefect of Studies at Mungret he first revealed his power of organisation and his capacity for dealing with men.
In Belvedere he found a perfect field for the exercise of his rare talents and his one year of work there, shortened enough and interrupted by his fatal disease, gave grounds for the highest anticipations, There was more than a great Prefect of Studies lost in him. Those who knew him best had come to recognise that his judgment, his intelligence, his kindness, his firmness and his enterprise, his complete interest in the work he was given, fitted him for higher things. But his contemporaries will keep longest the joyous memory of his social gifts. He was a perfect community man. His interests were always these of his house. He was full of gaiety, saw the humorous side of situations, and told a story or an adventure excellently.
Those who lived with him in Tullabeg or Milltown Park, who rowed with him in the boats on the Canal and the Brosna, or walked to Lough Bray or Glendhu, or cycled to Lough Dan or Luggala, these will not soon forget what a companion he was. He planned all these excursions. He saw to all the details. He forgot nothing, overlooked nothing. He was most ingenious and thoughtful in his charity. He knew every inch of the Dublin hills and knew the times necessary for all stages of the journey. No one could pack a bag as he could. He loved to surprise you by all the wonderful things he would draw out of it beside the fire on the Scalp or Glendhu.
Such talents, that judgment, intelligence capacity, frankness, such a temperament, so kind, joyous, humorous, can ill be spared in our Province. But perhaps, the greatest thing in his life was its ending.
For sixteen months he lived under sentence of death, He was too intelligent, too clear sighted, not lo know what his disease meant. He could mark its advance, he could note his own growing weakness No one who visited him during that time can forget his courage and cheeriness. He was always calm, always his old self. He kept up his interest in things, would speak dispassionately, if asked, about his sickness. He could tell a good story. He was never absorbed by his own ills.
Perhaps that is the lesson - courage, cheerfulness, conformity - that God wished him to preach by his life and death. Requiescat in pace.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Edward Francis (Frank) Ryan 1886-1928
“Whom the Gods love, die young” was certainly verified in the case of Fr Frank Ryan. Having displayed remarkable qualities of mind and heart, he died of a malignant cancer at the age of 42.

He was born on February 7th 1886, educated at Clongowes and entering the Society in 1903.

He was brilliant in his studies, taking his MA in Classics in 1907, retaining the place he had held all through, 1st in the Classical group. After an outstanding course in Theology in Milltown Park, he acted as Socius to the Master of Novices in Tullabeg. In rapid succession, he was Master of Juniors, Prefect of Studies in Mungret and Belvedere, in which house he first became aware of his dread disease.

He died on September 14th 1928.

The truly remarkable gifts of character he enjoyed may be gauged from the fact that even now, many years after his death, he is spoken of by those who knew him for his gaiety and kindness, and his rare quality of intuitive sympathy.

Owens, Gerald, 1886-, former Jesuit

  • Person
  • b 26 December 1886

Born: 26 December 1886, Dublin
Entered: 7 September 1903, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows 02 February 1923, Leuven, Belgium
Left the Society of Jesus: c.1926

Brother of William (Gerry) Owens - RIP 1963

McGuinness, Thomas, 1887-1925, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1718
  • Person
  • 11 May 1887-05 September 1925

Born: 11 May 1887, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1905, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1920
Final Vows 02 February 1923, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 05 September 1925, Dublin

Part of the Clongowes Wood College, Naas, Co Kildare community at the time of death

by 1910 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education was at Belvedere - a conspicuous member of the gymnastics team which had won the Shield so often there.

After his Novitiate he did his Philosophy at Stonyhurst, then Regency at Clongowes, and then he went to Milltown for Theology.
After Ordination he went to Clongowes as Study Prefect. He was very devoted to his work, even in times when he was suffering much from his health.
He had been ill for a number of years and doctors had though an operation could be successful. Within a month he underwent three operations, all very severe, and he died 05/09/1925 at the early age of 38. his sufferings during his last illness were so acute that one of his nurses had to be withdrawn, being unable to witness such suffering. All through this he was very patient and resigned to the will of God.
He was a pious man and very devoted to Our Lady. He was simple, unostentatious, kindly and generous in making sacrifices for the convenience of others. He prepared very carefully for everything - which his careful copious notes show - and this brought him remarkable success as a Preacher and Director of Retreats.
On the 1925 status he had been appointed Minister at Mungret, a job which he would have done admirably. But before he could take up that post he became very ill and died.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 1st Year No 2 1926
Obituary :
Fr Thomas McGuinness

Fr T McGuinness had been ailing for about three years, and finally the doctors decided to attempt an operation. Within a month he underwent three operations, all extremely severe, and he died on September 5th, 1925, at the early age of 38 years. His sufferings during his last illness were so acute that one of his nurses had to be withdrawn, not being able to bear seeing him in such great pain. All through he was patient, and entirely resigned to the will of God.

He was Belvederian - as a boy he was a conspicuous member of the gymnastic team which won the Shield so often for the College. He did his philosophy at Stonyhurst, his teaching at Clongowes, his theology at Milltown. After the Tertianship he returned to Clongowes as Study Prefect. He was efficient and devoted to his duty, being often at his post when he was
suffering much.
He was very pious, especially toward Our Lady, very simple and unostentatious, kindly and generous in making sacrifices for the convenience of others. These qualities, coupled with careful preparation - how careful his copious notes show - brought him remarkable success as a preacher and director of retreats. On the last status he was appointed Minister at Mungret a post which he would have filled admirably. But before he entered on his duties there, God called him to his reward.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Thomas McGuinness 1887-1925
Fr Thomas McGuinness had been ailing for three years, so, finally the doctors decided on an operation. Within a month he underwent three operations, all extremely severe, to no avail, and he died on September 5th 1925 at the early age of 38 years. His sufferings during his last illness were so acute that one of the nurses had to be withdrawn, not being able to endure seeing him in such pain. All through he was patient and resigned to the will of God.

He was a Belvederian, and as a boy was conspicuous as a member of the gymnastics team which won the Shield do often for the College. He entered the Society in 1905.

After his tertianship he was sent to Clongowes as Study prefect. He was very efficient and devoted to his monotonous duty, being often at his post when he was suffering a great deal.

He was deeply devoted to Our Lady, simple and unostentatious in manner, generous in making sacrifices for others.These qualities, coupled with careful preparation, his copious notes augured remarkable success for him as a preacher and director of retreats.

On the 1925 Status he was appointed Minister at Mungret, but before he entered on his duties there, God called him to his reward.

Gallagher, Richard, 1887-1960, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/161
  • Person
  • 19 January 1887-07 September 1960

Born: 19 January 1887, Cork City
Entered: 07 September 1905, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1920, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1923, Coláiste Iognáid, Galway
Died: 07 September 1960, Saint Teresa's Hospital, Mong Kok, Hong Kong

Part of the Wah Yan, Kowloon, Hong Kong community at the time of death.

Older Brother of Leonard Gallagher - RIP 1942

by 1910 at Valkenburg Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1928 second batch Hong Kong Missioners

◆ Hong Kong Catholic Archives :
Father Richard W. Gallagher, the senior member of the Society of Jesus in Hong Kong, died in St. Teresa’s Hospital, in the early morning of Wednesday, 7 September 1960, aged 73.

His health had been deteriorating for some years, but his zeal remained unabated and within the limits imposed by infirmity he continued his varied priestly work till within three weeks of his death.

Father Gallagher was born in Cork, Ireland, on 19 January 1887, the eldest son of a very large family. He joined the Society of Jesus on 7 September 1905.

He did his studies in Ireland and Germany and was ordained priest in 1920. After ordination he worked for some years in Ireland, preaching parish missions, teaching, and carrying out the duties of Prefect of Studies. All through his priestly life his preaching was characterised by simplicity, profundity, and lucidity, the outcome of assiduous application of great talents in a spirit of utter simplicity. He had proved himself also a first-class teacher and a brilliant organiser both of studies and of the manifold extra-curricular activities of his school.

The Irish Jesuits came to Hong Kong for the first time in December 1926. Father Gallagher’s varied gifts and complete readiness to do everything that was proposed to him made him exactly what was needed here. He was sent to Hong Kong in 1927 and, apart from one short rest in Ireland after the War, spent the rest of his life here.

He landed on 27 October. On the three following days he preached the tritium in preparation for the Feast of Christ the King in the Cathedral. This plunge into work was symbolic of what he was to do throughout his 33 years here.

In his first years, he taught Philosophy in the Seminary, edited The Rock, gave lectures and retreats, preached, studied Cantonese, and put himself at the disposal to all who needed his help.

In 1932 he was appointed first Rector and first Jesuit headmaster of Wah Yan College, which had been taken over almost at a moment’s notice by the Jesuit Fathers. The school was already well established and the change of administration might have been expected to cause friction. That it did not do so was due chiefly to Father Gallagher’s unvarying tact, courtesy, and understanding of other people’s point of view. Long before he ceased to be Rector in 1940 all had forgotten that friction had once been thought possible.

In December 1941, he was Prefect of Studies in a new college in Austin Road, Kowloon. The siege of Hong Kong and the Japanese occupation put an end to this work. Father Gallagher himself was arrested on 12 December and was not released till 23 January 1942. Soon after his release he went to St. Paul’s Hospital, Causeway Bay, where he remained till the end of the war, acting as chaplain to the hospital and as intermediary between the sisters and the occupying powers.

In helping the sick and the wretched during those years of distress and recurrent disaster Father Gallagher found full scope for something that was more characteristic than even his talents or his energy - his unfailing charity. (Throughout his life, unkindness of any sort aroused in him an almost physical repugnance.)

After the war he showed similar devotion and charity as chaplain to Queen Mary Hospital, combining with this work ready acceptance of the innumerable calls made upon him as a preacher, conference-giver, adviser, and supporter of Catholic organizations. His association with the Sisters of St. Paul de Chartres remained unbroken and the Little Flower Club in particular owed much to his encouragement.

In 1947 he took up the task of conducting the weekly Catholic Prayers from Radio Hong Kong. For the remaining twelve and a half years of his life, almost without a break, he gave these prayers always fresh, always simple, always prayerful, always newly composed for each week. Few broadcasters of any kind can rival his 659 broadcasts. Few, perhaps none, can rival the amount of good he did by broadcasting.

He worked almost to the end. His last broadcast was made less than three weeks before his death. He admitted at last that he was suffering. Medical examination revealed that he had not long to live. An operation became urgently necessary on Tuesday, 6 September, though there was little hope that it could do more than relieve pain.

He died without recovering consciousness at 12:20pm. On 7 September, 55 years to the day after his entry into the Society of Jesus.
Sunday Examiner Hong Kong - 9 September 1960

Funeral of Fr. Gallagher, S.J.

The late Father R.W. Gallagher, S.J., was buried in St. Michael’s Cemetery, Happy Valley, on Thursday, 8 September.

Solemn Requiem Mass for the repose of his soul was sung in the chapel of Wah Yan college, Kowloon, at 9am: Celebrant, Father H. Dargan, S.J., Regional Superior; Deacon, Father C. Egan, S.J.; Subdeacon, Father R. Kennedy, S.J. The school choir, directed by Father T. O’Neil, S.J., sang the whole Mass, partly in Gregorian, partly in harmony. The large chapel was filled by the large congregation of priests, Brothers, Sisters, past and present students of both Wah Yan Colleges, and other friends of Father Gallagher. Miss Aileen Woods represented Radio Hong Kong from which Father Gallagher had so often broadcasted.

His Lordship the Bishop officiated at the funeral in the evening. Among those present were the Hon. D. J. S. Crozier, C.M.G., Director of Education, the parish priests of the diocese, almost without exception, numerous representatives of the Religious of Hong Kong, priests, Brothers, and Sisters, representatives of the various Catholic organisations with which Father Gallagher was associated, most of the teachers who had received Father Gallagher when he went to Wah Yan College as the first Jesuit Rector, and many of the past students of those days.
Sunday Examiner Hong Kong 16 September 1960

Requiem for Fr. R.W. Gallagher, SJ

A Solemn Requiem Mass for the repose of the soul of the late Father R.W. Gallagher, S.J., first Jesuit Rector of Wah Yan College, will be celebrated in the school chapel, Wah Yan College, Hong Kong, at 9a.m. on Wednesday, October 5.
Sunday Examiner Hong Kong - 30 September 1960

◆ Biographical Notes of the Jesuits in Hong Kong 1926-2000, by Frederick Hok-ming Cheung PhD, Wonder Press Company 2013 ISBN 978 9881223814 :
He studied History in University College Dublin with special distinction. He had a remarkable memory and a passion for accurate statistics. In the course of his Jesuit studies, he spent some years in Germany and there he attained exceptional fluency in German, which he liked to exercise to the end of his life.

He came to Hong Kong in 1927, after spending some years in priestly work in Ireland.. He spent his early years here learning the language and editing the Catholic magazine “The Rock”. He became well known as a lecturer and preacher at Wah Yan College.

1932-1940 He was the first Rector/Principal of Wah Yan College Hong Kong. He was always closely associated with the Past Students Association. he overcame opposition by his open sincerity, genuine friendliness and tact. He served for a long period on the Board of Education and he was President of the Hong Kong Teachers Association, as well as being a member of numerous education committees.

He was a tireless visitor to the sick at all times. He served their needs by prayers, which he said from Radio Hong Kong once a week for over 12 years.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 21st Year No 1 1946

Arrivals :

Our three repatriated missioners from Hong Kong: Frs. T. Fitzgerald, Gallagher and G. Kennedy, arrived in Dublin in November and are rapidly regaining weight and old form. Fr. Gallagher has been assigned to the mission staff and will be residing at St. Mary's, Emo.

Irish Province News 22nd Year No 1 1947

Departures for Mission Fields in 1946 :
4th January : Frs. P. J. O'Brien and Walsh, to North Rhodesia
25th January: Frs. C. Egan, Foley, Garland, Howatson, Morahan, Sheridan, Turner, to Hong Kong
25th July: Fr. Dermot Donnelly, to Calcutta Mission
5th August: Frs, J. Collins, T. FitzGerald, Gallagher, D. Lawler, Moran, J. O'Mara, Pelly, Toner, to Hong Kong Mid-August (from Cairo, where he was demobilised from the Army): Fr. Cronin, to Hong Kong
6th November: Frs. Harris, Jer. McCarthy, H. O'Brien, to Hong Kong

Irish Province News 36th Year No 1 1961

Obituary :

Fr Richard Gallagher (1887-1960)

Fr. Gallagher died in Hong Kong on 7th September. He was ill for less than two weeks, but he was discovered to be suffering from a serious internal complaint, from which he had no hope of recovery. On the day the news of it was given to him an emergency operation was found necessary, and after it he never recovered consciousness. He was seventy three when he died and had completed to the day his fifty-fifth year in the Society.
By his death the Hong Kong Mission loses its best-known priest, its greatest personality and its best-loved member. He was born in Cork, where his father was a leading business-man, and was educated at the Presentation College there. As a scholastic he was conspicuous for his untiring energy. In Valkenburg, where he studied philosophy, he left a reputation for vigour and enterprise that was remembered for many years, and as a scholastic in Mungret he gained a reputation that soon made him celebrated throughout the province. He had many gifts, chief of which was a prodigious memory, so as a history teacher he rattled off dates in a way that bewildered his pupils. He had also the faculty of making up a subject with great rapidity, and he gave lectures on all conceivable topics and was a ready and entertaining speaker. He had a splendid voice, so he sang in public concerts in Limerick and he was an efficient director of the Mungret choir. He sketched and painted with skill, and the stages at Mungret, the Crescent and Milltown had curtains and back-drops painted by him that were up to professional standard. He was at everyone's beck and call, and it would be hard to recall a task that he was asked to do which he was not able to perform efficiently.
Four years theology brought a restraint that he found irksome at first, but he soon found outlets for his surplus energy. He wrote out in a copper plate hand and multiplied the code which Fr. Gannon compiled in his first year as professor of Fundamental Theology, and re-wrote it unhesitatingly when the professor preferred his second thoughts to his first, He gave lectures, illustrated by his own diagrams, on the medical side of moral studies, and if any found first steps in theology difficult, they could go to his room, where lying on his bed with his hands clasped under his head he expounded any thesis that was presented to him.
After Tertianship he went to Galway, where he was Prefect of Studies, taught several classes and preached constantly. It was also related apocryphally of him that in recounting his activities he declared that he also “said all the Masses”. When the College was closed for a period of years he was on the Mission Staff in Ireland and found full scope for his energies in preaching missions and giving retreats - but not for long, for when the Hong Kong Mission was opened, he was assigned to it in the first batch that followed the founders, Frs. G. Byrne and Neary. He arrived in Hong Kong at the end of October 1927, and two hours after landing he preached in the Cathedral for the Triduum of Christ the King, What the circumstances were that made that necessary we are not told, but he loved doing unusual things and making records, and that was one that he liked to recall.
From Hong Kong he went to Shiu Hing, in the Kwangtung Province of China, to study Chinese. While there he also taught English and singing and formed an orchestra in a College run by the Portuguese Mission, and had his studies partially interrupted by a civil war that was then raging in the province, and he went to Shanghai to give missions and retreats and spent a period doing parochial work in Canton. The whole period only lasted nine months but he learned to speak Chinese fluently, if not perfectly, and to the end of his life gave instructions and retreats regularly in that language.
On returning to Hong Kong in July 1928, he took over the work of editor and manager of the monthly magazine The Rock, which had begun publication in January. A few months later he took part with some of the other Fathers in a series of public lectures to refute rationalists who had been offensive and abusive in their attacks on religion in the local press. The lectures caused a sensation, they silenced the attackers and they attracted public attention to The Rock, which then, in the four years that it was under Fr. Gallagher's direction, built up a high reputation in Hong Kong that lasted until the Japanese invasion brought it to an end.
For some of these years Fr. Gallagher was also on the professorial staff of the Regional Seminary, but in 1932 there began what was the greatest work of his life when he was made Rector of Wah Yan College, Hong Kong.
This was a Middle School which had been begun by two Chinese Catholic teachers, and had grown so successful that they found it too big to handle. They offered it to the Society as a going concern, but stipulated that it should remain wholly Chinese. It was accepted, but with hesitation at first, because it was realised that neither teachers nor parents nor pupils would be pleased to see the leading Chinese school in the Colony handed over to foreigners. There was opposition and it was unpleasant for a time, but it was overcome, and the one thing that can be said is that Fr. Gallagher made Wah Yan.
If there was ever a triumph of personality in winning over a body of young and old who were complete strangers and not initially well-disposed, it was this. It was not a triumph of organisation, for Fr. Gallagher was not a great organiser. It was recalled that some years later when a new scholastic joined the staff, he asked the Rector, who was also Prefect of Studies, into what class he should go.
“Oh, just range around”, were his illuminating instructions.
It was complete friendliness, joined to firmness when necessary, and absolute support for his staff that won the day. The foreigners that those connected with the school had known hitherto were for the most part stand-offish, coldly official, and breathing an air of presumed authority. The teachers had never known of a headmaster who would go into the common room and sit down to drink tea with the rest, or the boys one who went down among them during the recreation period and talked and joked with them, and if there were black looks ignored them.
There was a hostel attached to the school, a nightmare institution, with rooms all mixed up with the community apartments, and housing in a room five or six who studied in the midst of noise in a way that Chinese can do. Almost anyone else would have wanted to reform it altogether from the start. Not so Fr. Gallagher. He realised that it was the ideal means through which the boys would get to know the priests and scholastics and would spread the news about their friendliness to the rest of the school.
Within a few months everything ran smoothly and it had become what it has since remained, a school in which the happiest relations imaginable exist between staff and pupils, and in which an ideal spirit of unity prevails in the community.
Fr. Gallagher remained Rector of Wah Yan till 1940. During those years, in addition to his work in the school, he was a member of the official Board of Education, he was for several years President of the Hong Kong Teachers' Association, and he was appointed by the Government to every important educational committee that was established, but in this age of conferences and round tables he was not a committee man, though his influence was considerable on several of the bodies on which he served. He dealt with individuals; he let talking go on without participating in it, but when all had their say it was often found that he had been writing, and he had a resolution ready to which the wearied members would be glad to agree.
His methods with his community too were unusual. Some thought that he was inclined to let things slide, but he set himself to make everyone happy; he gave each one the fullest scope and showed the most complete confidence in him. The result was a full response in the most excellent spirit. To visitors his hospitality was unbounded.
War clouds were gathering when he ended his term of office, but soon new duties awaited him. A branch of Wah Yan College existed across the harbour in Kowloon, with the same origin as that in Hong Kong, It was offered in turn to the Society, and in preparation for taking it over some classes were opened in a new house in Kowloon. Fr. Gallagher became headmaster.
This lasted for only a few months, for then the Japanese came and he and Fr. McAsey were made prisoners on the ground that they were English enemies. To Fr. Gallagher's protests, captors answered : “English, Irish, all the same”. That certainly did not silence him, and his protests were so continuous that they agreed to put the matter to Tokyo, but promised dire retribution if his claims were false. Geography won, and the prisoners were released.
He spent the years of occupation in the hospital of the French Sisters of St. Paul de Chartres, where he tended the sick and wounded and dying kept up the morale of nervous Sisters and an anxious staff, and constantly acted as intermediary between the hospital and the Japanese authorities. During these years he endeared himself to all who were in the hospital and the convent, and was their weekly confessor for the rest of his life.
He was seriously weakened by the privations of the war and was sent back to Ireland for a year to regain strength. He came back greatly improved, but he was never quite the same again. For the years that remained he lived in Ricci Hall, the Hostel of the Hong Kong University, and Wah Yan College, Kowloon. The first task assigned him was chaplain to the Catholics in the government hospitals. He did it with his usual thoroughness and devotion. A telephone call in the middle of the night, or as he sat down to a meal, was answered at once, and the more frequent the calls the better he was pleased. Rheumatism in the hip however began to affect him severely. He found it hard to get in and out of cars, and eventually he had to relinquish the main part of his duty as hospital chaplain. But he never relinquished it altogether. He never failed to visit any sick person who wanted to see him - and there were many.
Then he was given as one of his regular tasks the recital of mid-day prayers for a quarter of an hour on the radio on one day a week. He continued this for over ten years, giving regular prayers and a short instruction. A great many people, in particular the sick and the old and the lonely, listened to them regularly. They were always fresh and always most carefully prepared. He prided himself on never missing them, and when he went to hospital for the last time, he was able to say that two were prepared in advance and that he had said them 659 times - he could never afford to be wrong about figures.
It was in reality a mercy that death came to him so swiftly, for he would have suffered greatly. He probably suffered more than he admitted, but to all enquiries about himself at any time, even when rheumatism seemed to make movement very painful, his answer was “Not too bad at all”, and nothing more would he say, To be inactive would have been to him the greatest trial, and we all feel that he died as he would have wished.
We shall long miss his genial presence, his charity - for none ever heard him say an uncharitable word; it was not merely after his death that this was noted of him - his stories, which we had heard so many times, his statistics of rainfall and of winds in typhoons, and his detailed remembrance of everything that had taken place during his thirty-three years in Hong Kong. He was a “character” at all times, but the youthful tornado had given place to kindly old age. He was loved and respected outside the Society as well as within it. At his funeral there were hundreds of people of every kind, priests in great number, Sisters and lay people of every class, Catholics and Protestants and pagans, old pupils, teachers, servants in our houses, convent amahs - and one felt that not a single one of them was there just as a formality, but that all felt that in him they had lost a friend. Messeges of regret and sympathy came from all sides, from the Protestant Bishop of Hong Kong and the Director of Education to simple souls who had never met him but had listened to his radio prayers or remembered a kind act of his. In the Mission of Hong Kong he will be always remembered, for he was one of the stalwarts who built it up and left it forever indebted to him. R.I.P.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Richard Gallagher 1887-1960
Fr Richard Gallagher, like his brother Fr Leonard, was remarkable for his gifts of versatility, energy and bonhomie. Born in Cork in 1887, he was educated the the Presentation College there.

Having completed his philosophical studies in Valkenburg, he was a scholastic in Mungret, where he laid the foundations of his reputation as a gifted and versatile man. His memory was prodigious, he could make up any subject with great rapidity, he gave lectures on all conceivable topics, he had a splendid voice of public concert standard, he painted and sketched at will. With all these gifts went unbounded energy, and a willingness to employ them at anyone’s request.

Transferred to Hong Kong in October 1927, one can easily imagine what a field he found for all these talents. It was typical of him that two hours after landing in Hong Kong, he preached in the Cathedral for the Feast of Christ the King. He was editor of The Rock, was on the professorial staff of the regional Seminary, he was the first Recotr of Wah Yan College. As Fr Vincent Byrne said of himself “I made Mungret so that Fr Dick could say I made Wah Yan!”

In 1940 he became headmaster of the new Wah Yan at Kowloon. Then came the Japanese occupation. His health suffered so much during this period, that the war over, he returned to Europe to recuperate. On his return he resumed his activities at a slower tempo. For ten whole years he gave a quarter of an hour’s prayer at midday on the Hong Kong Radio.

He died after a brief illness on September 7th 1960.

His name will live forever in Hong Kong, for he was one of the stalwarts who built it up, and left it forever indebted to him.

Murray, Michael, 1886-1949, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/759
  • Person
  • 31 March 1886-27 November 1949

Born: 31 March 1886, Strokestown, County Roscommon
Entered: 01 February 1905, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1919, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1923, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 27 November 1949, Loyola College, Watsonia, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1908 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1909 at Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands (TOLO) studying
by 1910 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1910

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Michael Murray entered the Society at Tullabeg, 1 February 1905, studied philosophy at Stonyhurst and Gemert, 1908-10, did regency at Xavier College, Kew, 1910-16, and theology at Milltown Park, 1916-20. Tertianship was at Tullabeg, 1921-22. After ordination he taught at Clongowes, Mungret, and Belvedere for short periods, before returning to Australia in 1927.
While in Australia he worked in the parishes of Norwood, 1927-30, Sevenhill, 1930-32, Norwood, 1932-33, Richmond, 1933-40, Star of the Sea, Milsons Point, 1940-42, and Richmond, 1942-48. His final years, 1948-49, were at Loyola College, Watsonia.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 25th Year No 1 1950
Fr. Michael Murray (1886-1905-1949) – Vice Province of Australia

Fr. Michael Murray, S.J., whose death in Australia occurred on 28th November, was born at Strokestown, Co. Roscommon in 1886. Educated at Clongowes Wood College, he spent a year studying engineering in the Technical College, Bristol, before entering the Society of Jesus at St. Stanislaus' College. Tullamore in 1905. He pursued his philosophical studies at Stonyhurst and at Gemert, Belgium, after which he went to Australia, where he taught for six years at Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne. He returned to Dublin for his theological course and was ordained priest at Milltown Park in 1919. He made his Tertianship at Tullabeg.
After a period in the Apostolic School, Mungret where he was engaged in training students to the priesthood, Fr. Murray joined the mission staff and conducted missions and retreats for three years in various parts of Ireland. In 1927 he returned to Australia and worked zealously for the remainder of his life as pastor in the Jesuit parish churches at Norwood, South Australia, at St. Aloysius', Sydney and St. Ignatius, Richmond, Melbourne. It was in the latter church that Fr. Murray spent most of his years, from 1934 to 1940 and again from 1943 to 1949. Owing to declining health, he had to abandon active work during the past year. He was attached at the time of his death to St. Ignatius House of Higher Studies, Watsonia.
Those who knew Fr. Michael in the noviceship or later as a master in Clongowes or on the mission staff will retain the memory of his unassuming and affectionate disposition and quiet humour. R.I.P.

Fitzgibbon, Daniel, 1884-1956, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/154
  • Person
  • 17 September 1884-04 August 1956

Born: 17 September 1884, Limerick City
Entered: 07 September 1904, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1919, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1923, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 04 August 1956, Calvary Hospital, Galway

Part of the Coláiste Iognáid, Galway community at the time of death

Older brother of Michael Fitzgibbon - RIP 1973

by 1909 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1912

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Daniel Fitzgibbon was a novice under Michael Browne in 1904. In 1911-12 he spent a year at Belvedere before being transferred to Riverview, 1912-16. Apart from teaching and prefecting, he was in charge of the chapel, and the theatre. He was known an avid Irish patriot and a student of Irish.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 31st Year No 4 1956
St. Ignatius Church and College, Galway
A short and apt account of Fr. Dan (Fitzgibbon) appeared in the Irish Times. It was from the pen of an old boy of St. Ignatius; was entitled “Sagart Mín”, and ended thus : “Ní dream iad Scoláirí Meánscoile a bhíos de shior ag moladh a gcuid múinteoirí, ach is minic agus is rí-mhinic a chualas Scoláirí i gColáiste lognáid ag rá : 'Naomh críochnaithe sea an t-Athair Mac Giobúin. Fear beanaithe gan aimhreas é.' Agus ní ag magadh a bhíodar ach oiread”.

Obituary :

Fr Dan Fitzgibbon (1884-1956)
Fr. Fitzgibbon was born at 1 Bedford Row, Limerick, on September 17th, 1884, and was educated at Mount St. Alphonsus' Redemptorist College and at the Crescent College, Limerick. He entered the Society at Tullabeg in September, 1904. After his Juniorate at Tullabeg he secured his B.A. Degree at the old Royal University of Ireland. Having studied Philosophy at Stonyhurst he was sent to Australia, where he taught at Riverview College, Sydney, until 1916, when he returned to Ireland. He studied Theology at Milltown Park and was ordained in 1919. Having completed his Theology in 1920 he spent a year at Mungret before going to Tullabeg for Tertianship, 1921-22. He then returned to Mungret for two further years. We find him at Belvedere for the year 1924-25 and at the Crescent for the next year, 1925-26. Then began his long term of fourteen years at Clongowes, where he taught successfully and produced the annual opera. In 1940 he was transferred to Galway, where he remained for the rest of his life and where he died happily in Calvary Hospital on August 4th, 1956.
If ever a man was “young of heart” it was Fr. Dan. Youthful in his enthusiasms, seeing persons and things with the fresh eye of a child, childlike in his simplicity and frankness, even to the very end ; that sums up in a few words one of whom we can say: “We shall not see his likes again”.
“Young of heart”, and well the children knew it. One of the last things he did was to bring the children of “Club na n-Og” for their annual picnic, and, as usual, he had a fine day for it. It has been known for the sun to shine, apparently “by special arrangement”, wherever Fr. Dan held his picnic, while all the rest of Galway was washed with rain. The good Lord no doubt repaid the childlike trust and the selfless devotion of an aged and delicate man to His little ones, by such privileges. For Fr. Fitzgibbon did devote himself to the little ones of Christ. Evening after evening he played away at an old piano for their dancing; year after year he prepared them for their recitations and little plays for Feis an Iarthair and An Tóstal; why, he even wrote their plays for them.
But all this was not merely amusing children. Convinced as he was that one of the greatest safeguards of their Faith was our own Irish culture. Fr. Fitzgibbon sought by these simple means to instil into these children a knowledge and love of Gaelic and the Gaelic way of life. He was as wholehearted and enthusiastic as a youth for all that was Gaelic. He had no time for pessimists and hesitaters—all that was needed was the will to win. So he went ahead, sparing nothing, sparing no one, least of all himself, in his endeavours to enlist all in the Cause. “Ar son na Cuise” - that was explanation and reason for everything, but most of all for his untiring self-sacrifice.
Fr. Fitzgibbon did not wait until he found himself in Galway to devote himself to and stir up in others, a devotion to things Gaelic. During his fourteen years in Clongowes he ceaselessly promoted the same Cause. Among his many interests was always one for drama. He was the “venerabilis inceptor” of those annual dramatic performances for which Belvedere and Clongowes have become well-known. In the days of his work as producer of plays and opera in Clongowes, no entertainment would take place unless an Irish play preceded the main item of the programme, and none finished without the enthusiastic singing of his own composed Anthem, sung in the tongue of the Gael.
All this must not let us lose sight of his priestly work. Fr. Fitzgibbon was a devoted and most kindly confessor and a greatly appreciated preacher and retreat-giver. And who would wonder at that, for few knew the human heart as he did ; and his great love for the oppressed and the troubled assured everyone of his boundless sympathy and help. "Poor so-and-so is in trouble," one often heard him say, and one knew that “so-and-so” had found his comforter and true friend. It was this same sympathy which made him such a wonderful teacher of those pupils whom no one else seemed to be very anxious to have in his class-tho' he could and did teach the brilliant brilliantly.
“Unless ye become as little children” - Fr. Dan has fulfilled the divine condition, and we know that he has gained the Kingdom promised to such.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Dan Fitzgibbon 1884-1956
If ever a man kept young at heart even with advancing years it was Fr Daniel Fiztgibbon. Youthful in his enthusiasms, seeing persons and things with the fresh eye of a child, childlike in his simplicity and frankness, that sums up in a few words one of whom we can say “we shall not look upon his life again”.

Born in Limerick in 1884, he was educated at the Crescent, entering the Society in 1904.

As a priest, he spent his whole life teaching in the classroom, another of our hidden saints of the blackboard and chalk, in Mungret, Crescent, Clongowes and finally Galway. But his chief love was the children and the language of old Ireland. Year after year he prepared them for their competitions in singing and recitation. He even wrote plays for them, for he was a poet of no mean order, both in English and Irish. He was also much appreciated as a preacher and retreat giver, a most patient confessor, but his childlikeness and love of the little ones were his outstanding characteristics.

“Unless you become as a little child ye shall not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven”. This seems to have been his motto in life, and surely gave him immediate entry when he died on August 4th 1856.

Canavan, Joseph E, 1886-1950, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/28
  • Person
  • 26 May 1886-25 January 1950

Born: 26 May 1886, Kune-Khandala, Maharashtra, India
Entered: 07 September 1904, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1919, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1923, Chiesa del Gesù, Rome Italy
Died: 25 January 1950, St Vincent's Hospital, Dublin

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1909 at Stonyhurst, England (ANG) studying
by 1922 at Drongen, Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1923 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 4 1948

Fr. Canavan, who, as briefly recorded in our last issue, is attending Congresses, at San Sebastian and Barcelona, writes on 12th-13th September from the former place:
"The trip out was pleasant and rapid. Señor Don Jose Arnau, who leaves for Dublin tomorrow, met me at the frontier, saw me through the customs and drove me to San Sebastian, a perfectly lovely place. I had hardly arrived at the Residence when I was called on the phone by the Irish Loreto nuns at Las Arenas, near Bilbao, asking when I was going to them. They had received permission from the Bishop for me to give them a couple of talks and to hear the confessions of the community! I fancied I was back in Milltown Park. Our Fathers have been extremely kind, in fact everyone goes out of his way to do me services. On Saturday last I got up at 4 o'clock, caught an early train and said Mass at Loyola in a chapel all silver, the altar silver, the very flooring of silver. To-day some Spanish friends are driving me to Pamplona and Puente la Reina, and I shall try to see Xavier, and that will take in most of Navarra..
We opened the Conversaciones with Mass and Breakfast at the Episcopal Palace. The Nuncio presided, flanked by a Bishop on his right and left. The Council then set up three Commissions, and I am or one. We speak French and English and Spanish to a lesser extent. The resolution on Liberty of Education adopted practically entire the account I had given of the Irish outlook and system, and has recommended it to the general body. We have Spaniards, Portuguese, Brazilians, English, French, Italians, Swiss, Belgians and Dutch on our committee. We meet twice a day for two hours or so each time, and now and again we have a plenary session in the evening. Yesterday we were invited to a reception given by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, which I refrained from attending, as I had had a long day already, what with my trip to Loyola and my attendance at the Conversaciones in the afternoon. I forgot to mention that at Loyola I offered Mass for the Province and its needs”.

13th Monday :
“Yesterday I drove to Pamplona through the mountains of Guipuzcoa and Navarre, saw the spot where St. Ignatius was wounded, had dinner with some friends at Puente la Reina and then went on to Xavier. One of the Fathers there had been at Milltown, and another knew Fr. Joy at Rome. It was a wonderful day spent in a country vibrating with the memory of St. Ignatius and St. Francis, On Wednesday I go to Bilbao, then to Oña, Burgos, Valladolid, Salam anca and Madrid. The Minister for Foreign Affairs (a former President of Catholic Action in Spain) has presented me with a Kilometrico, a document which entitles me to travel first-class and free over 5,000 kilometers in Spain. The climate here is rather like Ireland's : plenty of rain, some storms, but much hotter when the sun shines. The other side of the Sierras, in Navarre there is little or no rain, the land is dry and rather parched, and the vine and olive flourish. Loyola is in a pleasant green valley, Xavier is a hard, severe, austere barren, opening in the hills. Spain is a country of sudden violent contrasts, but the people, at least here in the north, are splendidly Catholic...!”

Irish Province News 25th Year No 2 1950


Fr. Joseph Canavan (1886-1904-1950)

Father Joseph E. Canavan. Born Khandalla, India, 26th May, 1886. Educated St. Mary's High School, Bombay and Clongowes Wood (1901-1904).
At. C.W.C. he gained high priase for his maiden speech in the Higher Line Debating Society in his last year.
Cricket : On the House XI, second in batting averages and first in bowling averages. Soccer : On the House XI. Athletics : Easter Sports, 1904 won the Higher Line 100 yards and 2nd in the 440.
Entered Novitiate 7 September, 1904. Juniorate, got B.A., Philosophy at Stonyhurst, 1908-1911.
Taught at C.W.C. 1911-1917. Theology at Milltown, 1916-1920. Taught for a year at C.W.C., 1920-1921. Editor Clongownian. Tertianship - Tronchiennes, 1921-1922.
Biennium, Rome, 1922-1924.
Prof. Philos. at Milltown, 1924-1931 and at Tullabeg, 1930-1933.
Prof. Theol. Milltown Park, 1933-1949. Praef. Stud. Milltown Park, 1947-1949. Elector at General Congregation, September October, 1946. Died, St. Vincent's Nursing Home, 25th January, 1950,
“I was taught here to accept success without arrogance and defeat without repining. I was taught here, by precept and example, the lessons of truth, of chivalry and of manliness”. This extract from John Redmond's speech at the Clongowes Centenary Celebrations is quoted with approval by Father Joseph Canavan in an article which he wrote for the Riverview College Magazine in 1948.
It is revealing in a two-fold manner. It shows directly something of what Father Canavan thought of his Alma Mater, and it shows indirectly and unconsciously something of the man himself. The revelation, limited as it is, is valuable because he was not one who opened his heart readily, fearless in expressing his convictions, he kept his sentiments to himself. Bearing in mind the words, we may review the chief activities of his life as a Jesuit.
After his Biennium in Rome - which gained for him the coveted degree of Magister Aggregatus of the Gregorian University - he returned to Ireland to begin the unbroken course of teaching which ran from 1924 to 1949 : Philosophy for nine years and Theology for sixteen years. One of his students has kindly supplied the following impression of Father Canavan as a Professor of Philosophy :
“I was lucky enough to have Fr, Canavan for my three years of Philosophy and to have him as my professor for three of the six main subjects, i.e., for Critica, Cosmology and Ethics. The years were 1929-1932, the heyday of his professorship. He was clear and incisive in exposition, cutting away irrelevancies. He never went in for spoon feeding - his students had to make a considerable personal effort. There were no such things in those days as polycopied pages handed round, each philosopher had to make up the theses for himself. This system was excellent for the averagely intelligent - though it must be admitted that the weaker brethren found it rough going. Fr. Canavan lectured, in the true sense of the word. When the main point of the thesis had been dealt with clearly, succinctly, he sat back, as it were, and began to open up larger horizons - allied questions in the same subjects, the interconnection of the various disciplines, the points of contact with modern thought (how often he brought into class articles from contemporary reviews, cuttings from newspapers and the like!). In the light of his future activities, which seem to have been connected mainly with ethical and moral questions, it is interesting to note that his first and deepest love was metaphysics. (Later on, in Louvain, I was reminded of him time and again by the professing of Pere Pierre Charles.) He took a great personal interest in his students, and this was especially evident in his dealings with them outside class. Always at their service in his room, he was affable and stimulating. One of his most outstanding traits was his way of talking to you as man to man - he never condescended. Even - or perhaps particularly - in his treatment of the least philosophically minded was this true. It was ever his habit to speak to you on his own level of intelligence. For him you were a grown-up, not a school-boy, and an intelligent grown-up, at that. He gave you confidence, drew you out of yourself, made you face difficulties, both philosophical and personal. A true educator”.
When Father Canavan came to teach Theology, his method and his manner did not change and his classes were almost to a man as enthusiastic about their Professor as his classes in Philosophy had been. And a point not mentioned in connection with Philosophy, he was an ideal examiner. His questions were clear and fair. He put the candidate at his ease with a sympathetic courtesy which, without impairing the rigour of the examination, did much to diminish its nervous strain.
Without ever neglecting his main work - that of Professor - he contrived to meet, to a great extent, the demands that were made for his services by the many externs who were not slow to recognise his ability. He had a masterly grasp of business, and a fund of tact and patience which made him an excellent committee-man and chairman, and won for him many tributes, of which the following is an example :

An Appreciation :
“I had not set eyes upon Father Canavan for ten years, but my brief encounters with him in 1938 and 1939 when I served with him as a member - under his chairmanship - on the Citizens Housing Council are so clear that they might have occurred yesterday. There was more than one man of character on that Council, and more than one man of high distinction. I met none who was not proud to serve under Father Joseph Canavan.
As one in charge of a major social programme, he had the ideal qualifications - of tenderness, of incisiveness, and of what, for want of a better phrase, I may call social conscience. He possessed also, in very high measure, that courtesy which, above all else, is desirable in the controller of a committee. I am not in fault, I think, in saying that at least one very high ecclesiastic of the Church of Ireland would second my weakness in this respect. As a layman, Joseph Canavan would have proved himself eminent in this or any other State. To his capacity for the leadership of men he added the finest qualities of a priest of God. Such at least is the sentiment of one who admired and loved him”. W.A.N. (Irish Times, 26/1/50).

In addition to the Housing Council just referred to, he served on the Governmental Commission on the Civil Service. His work for the Civics Institute won an expression from that body not only of grief at his death, but also of grateful appreciation.
His many lectures to externs on a variety of subjects, from Medical Ethics, Miracles, Church and State, to Matt Talbot were marked by thorough knowledge and clear expression. His writings ranged from poetry for instance, the Clongowes Centenary Ode to the scientific prose of his Biennium Thesis, entitled : “De Iure Proprietatis ; Sententia Hodiernorum Collectivistarum comparata cum Doctrina S. Thomae et Doctorum Scholasticorum”. And in all of them, the standard was high - nothing that he did was second-rate.
His interest in Social Science found early expression when as a young priest in Clongowes he was appointed director of the Leo Guild, and manifested itself soon after in his choice of the subject for his Biennium Thesis. That interest was maintained all his life and it was not merely the theoretical interest of a detached observer, it was the practical interest of one who had at heart the welfare of those in need and who did not spare himself trouble when there was question of helping them. The full extent of the services rendered by him in the sphere of practical sociology cannot be estimated, for they were as unostentatious as was his practice of private charity.
There were, I think, several stages in getting to know Father Canavan. And for those who did not go the whole way it would have been easy to misjudge him. Speaking in a general way, it may be said that the first impression was that one had met a brilliant thinker, a witty conversationalist, a man of the world, polished and thoroughly competent to hold his own in any company. This impression was followed often enough by another, less favourable. An element of vanity, of cock-sureness, of cynicism, seemed to emerge and become conspicuous. At this second stage, the effect of the brilliance and the wittiness wore off, and the views expressed - and still more the manner of their expression - became irritating. How was it then that Father Canavan enjoyed the high esteem and the warm and loyal friendship of so many people, both inside and outside the Society? The reason was because there was a third stage, reached by those who recognised the truth : that the cock-sureness was but the incisive expression of views clearly formulated and sincerely held; that the vanity, such as it was, was the product of a childlike simplicity; that the cynicism was a defensive armour, hiding and protecting a profound sensitiveness. And, making fair allowance for these mannerisms, one had not to know him for long to detect his extraordinary kindliness. This is the trait which made the deepest impression on those who knew him best.
His judgements on men might be severe (though never unjust), but whenever he could do anyone a good turn, he did it, generously and graciously. He could not abide humbug or pretensions, but he could and did sympathise with misfortune, with weakness, with lack of ability. Of malice or meanness, there was not a trace in him. If he was sensitive, and I believe he was, he did not betray it. If he was disappointed, he did not complain. I fear that Superiors were sometimes tempted to overburden him with work, because of his readiness to accept any task and his prompt and efficient discharge of it.
He did not make a parade of personal piety, but the solidity of his religious life was proved by his religious regularity, his obedience, his punctilious care in asking for leaves, and his loyalty to the Society. I never made a retreat under him, but I am told that, when giving an eight-day retreat, he used to devote two full days to the study of the character of Our Lord.
It is not surprising that, in his last illness, after months of unrelenting pain, his patience should have occasionally worn thin but a remark made by him not long before the end was an eloquent revelation of the real man - his nurse was about to give him an injection to relieve his agony, but he refused to accept it, saying: “I want to die in pain”.
If I were to suggest that he was faultless, he himself would be the first to protest - and with vigour. But, I do firmly hold that, if chivalry be understood in the Ignatian sense of the word, those lessons of truth, and chivalry, and manliness, which he learned as a boy, remained ever deeply impressed in the heart and were consistently and nobly followed in the life of Father Joseph Canavan.

Shuley, Thomas, 1884-1965, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/765
  • Person
  • 16 June 1884-28 March 1965

Born: 16 June 1884, Dublin
Entered: 06 September 1902, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 16 May 1918, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1922, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 28 March 1965, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1907 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1909

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Thomas Shuley entered the Society in 1902, and came to Australia in 1909. From 1910-15 he was a regent at Xavier College, working at various times as second and first division prefects, but his name is misspelt in the lists from the college history. After ordination in Ireland, he worked mainly in the pastoral ministry.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 40th Year No 3 1965
Obituary :
Fr Thomas Shuley SJ
Fr. Tom Shuley was born in Dublin on 18th June 1884. He was one of five brothers, of whom three, Tom, George and Arthur, came to Clongowes in 1899. Tom was then fifteen years old, having been for some years previously at St. George's College, Weybridge, Surrey, conducted by the Josephite Fathers. He completed his last year in Rhetoric class in 1902 and entered the noviceship at Tullabeg on 6th September of that year, Fr. Michael Browne being his master of novices and Fr. Richard Campbell socius. Of his immediate contemporaries the only survivors are Fr. C. Byrne and Fr. E. Mackey.
After two years juniorate in Tullabeg and three years philosophy in Stonyhurst, he went to Australia for colleges, and was prefect at Xavier College, Melbourne, for five years. He apparently filled the position with great success. When Fr. Paul O'Flanagan was in Australia in 1950, he was impressed by the number of old Xaverians who, after that long lapse of time, enquired for Fr. Shuley and spoke of him with esteem and affection.
During his last two years at Xavier, he was in charge of the cadets. In connection with this activity, he used to tell a good story. On one occasion, he accompanied the cadets to an inter school shooting competition. After the competition, the sergeant in charge brought the boys up to the targets and showed them how the signals were worked. He than announced that, as a finale to the day, there would be a match between himself and Mr. Shuley, ten shots each. Mr. Shuley was quite a good shot and accepted the challenge, the stakes being half-a-crown. The contest was thrilling : Each contestant scored an “inner” until the very last shot, when Mr. Shuley just failed with an “outer” and duly handed over the half-crown. The boys, of course, were greatly impressed by his prowess. The party then went down to the railway station. The sergeant shook hands with Mr. Shuley and whispered : “There's your half-crown back, sir. I had that all arranged with the markers”.
He returned to Ireland in 1916 and, after theology in Milltown Park, was ordained in 1919. He taught for a year in Mungret before doing tertianship in Tullabeg. Four years as Higher Line Prefect in Clongowes were followed by seven years in Mungret, at first as First Prefect, then as Minister. In 1933 he went to St. Ignatius', Galway, where he was Procurator and then Minister until 1939. After a year on the staff at Gardiner St. there began his long connection with the mission staff, which lasted from 1940 to 1953. At the close of this period he was over seventy, but remained remarkably active, and acted as Minister to the end of his life, in the Crescent, Limerick, 1953-55, in Rathfarnham 1955-59 and in Leeson Street 1959-64. During the last year or two in Leeson Street his health had been failing, and in 1964 he was transferred to Milltown Park. On 18th September he had a stroke and was brought to St. Vincent's nursing home. He recovered to the extent of being able to move about with assistance, but his condition never gave much hope of recovery. On 28th March 1965 he had a second stroke and the end came peacefully within a few minutes.
When one thinks of Fr. Shuley's long and active life, the first characteristic that one recalls is his complete devotion to the work he had in hand. He is, perhaps, best remembered as a Minister, in which office he spent twenty-three years, and in which he displayed remarkable efficiency. He took a keen interest in the details of housekeeping, was well informed in business matters, knew where to buy to the best advantage and where to get the best advice concerning work to be done. He was not, however, engrossed in business. He enjoyed pleasant relaxation when it came his way no one was a better companion on an outing or holiday - but he never lost sight of the main purpose, the material welfare of the house where he was in charge and the comfort of his community. As a missioner, he was most methodical and painstaking. One of his former fellow-missioners recalls that, at the outset, his sermons were not very effective. He realised this, and set to work to improve them, making copious notes of his reading, and seeking advice from others, with the result that he soon became a really first class preacher.
This devotion to duty was what one might call the outstanding exterior feature of Fr. Shuley's character. It flowed naturally from a corresponding interior feature, his complete selflessness. No man was ever so free from what has so well been called “the demon of self-pity”. It was not that he had no feelings. He would, indeed, talk freely to his intimate friends about the “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune” which had come his way during his life in the Society. But he treated all adversities with a good-humoured, almost light-hearted courage, and his attitude was that the past was the past and the thing to do was to get on with the next job. In his latter years he had a good deal of illness, which he endured in the most matter-of-fact manner, conscientiously taking the necessary measures for his recovery, and resuming his work in the quickest possible time.
Fr. Shuley was a wonderful community man. He had a great capacity for friendship, and a special gift for seeing the humorous side of life whether within or without the walls of the monastery. He was an excellent raconteur, and had a power of making a good story out of some incident that would have appeared featureless to others.
His deep, though unobtrusive piety was shown by the regularity of his religious life and by his constancy in spiritual reading. One would often find him in his room delving into some spiritual author, old or new, and he would give one the gist of what he had been reading, accompanied by his own shrewd and humorous comments on its application to actual life. At no time was the depth of his spirituality so evident as in his last days, when, helpless to a considerable extent and suffering much discomfort, and obviously knowing that the end was not far off, he displayed complete resignation and that good-humoured courage that had been such a feature of his whole life.

Mackey, Ernest, 1884-1968, Jesuit priest and missioner

  • IE IJA J/737
  • Person
  • 09 January 1884-18 January 1968

Born: 09 January 1884, Nenagh, County Tipperary
Entered: 07 September 1901, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1916, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1922, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
Died: 18 January 1968, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the Manresa House, Dollymount, Dublin community at the time of death

by 1905 at St Aloysius, Jersey, Channel Islands (FRA) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1907

◆ Companions in Mission 1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Note from Eddie O’Connor Entry
Fr Ernest Mackey S.J. was a well known school retreat giver. The vocations of Fr Eddie O'Connor and a few years later of Walter, his brother, were influenced by him. The father of the two brothers was Peter 0'Connor a local lawyer and former Olympic champion. The story has it that Peter, encountering Fr Mackey after Fr. Eddie had entered the Society, said
‘That man has taken one of my sons’. Fr Mackey's undaunted reply was, ‘And now, he is coming to take another (Walter)’.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Ernest Mackey entered the Society in 1901, and, as a regent, taught at St Aloysius' College in 1908, and was prefect of discipline. He did the same work at Riverview, 1909-10, and Xavier, 1911-12, and was finally at St Patrick's College.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 12th Year No 4 1937
Rev. Michael Garahy, S.J., and Rev. Ernest Mackey, S.J. have been invited by the Most Rev. Bishop Francis Hennemann, P.S.M DD., to preach at the approaching Centenary Eucharistic Congress - which has already met with a good deal of opposition - to be held at Capetown, South Africa. Dr. Hennemann is Vicar Apostolic of the Western Vicariate of Cape Town and the Cape of Good Hope.
Word has come to say that His Lordship is to send full Faculties to the Fathers by air-mail-including power to confer the Sacrament of Confirmation-for the Catholics on Ascension Island and the Island of St, Helena, both of which fall under his jurisdiction.
They will preach during Congress Week at the Pontifical High Mass and at the Mass Meeting for Men. There will be an official broadcast of these functions, which are to be held in the open air at a short distance from St. Mary's Cathedral.
During the course of their stay in South Africa they are due to deliver special lectures on Catholic Action and kindred subjects to Catholic Men's Societies and to Catholic Women's Leagues. Their programme includes also a series of missions and parochial Retreats throughout the Vicariate beginning at the Cathedral Capetown, as a preparation for the Congress, which is fixed to take place from January 9th-16th, 1938. A special Congress Stamp has been issued to commemorate the event.
At the close of the January celebrations they intend to continue their apostolic labours in the Eastern Vicariate at the request of the Most Rev. Bishop McSherry, D,D,, Senior Prelate of South Africa.
Father Garahy is well-known throughout the country since he relinquished his Chair of Theology at Milltown Park in 1914 to devote his energies to the active ministry.
Father Mackey has been Superior of the Jesuit Mission staff in Ireland since 1927. During his absence in South Africa, Father J Delaney, S.J., Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin, will take over his duties. Fathers Mackey and Garahy leave for Capetown on Tuesday, 24th August, 1937, and are expected back in Ireland about Easter, 1938.
Father Mackey has just received a cablegram from Bishop Hennemann asking him to give the Priests' Retreat at Cape Town.

Irish Province News 13th Year No 1 1938
Our two Missioners to South Africa, Fathers Mackey and Garahy reached Cape Town on 23rd September.
The voyage was uneventful. They landed at Las Palmas and visited the centre of the Island.
Writing about the road, overhanging a steep precipice, over which they travelled, Father Garahy tells us : “I realised there was nothing between us and eternity except a few feet of road. It seemed to be a matter of inches when we crawled past other cars coming down.” They paid one more visit before reaching Cape Town, and Father Garahy's description is : “A spot of earth more arid than Ascension it would be hard to find outside the Sahara, and yet it grazes about 400 sheep and some cattle on one spot called the Green Mountain.”
Work began the very day after their arrival at Cape Town - a Retreat by Father Mackey to Legion of Mary, with five lectures a day. On the next Sunday, Father Garahy preached at all three Masses in the Cathedral, and again in the evening, The Mission began on Sunday, 3rd October, and from that date to Christmas the missioners had only one free week.

Irish Province News 13th Year No 2 1938
Our two Missioners, Fathers Mackey and Garahy, continue to do strenuous and widely extended work in South Africa. A source of genuine pleasure to them, and one that they fully appreciate, is the very great kindness shown to them by all the priests, not least among them by the Capuchins from Ireland. In the short intervals between the Missions the two Missioners were taken in the priests cars to every spot in the Cape worth seeing. They are only too glad to acknowledge that they will never forget the amount of kindness lavished on them.
In spite of fears the Eucharistic Congress in South Africa was an undoubted success, A pleasant and peculiar incident of the celebration was an “At Home” given by the Mayor of Capetown Mr. Foster, a Co, Down Presbyterian, to the Bishops, priests and prominent laymen. About 600 were present.

Irish Province News 13th Year No 3 1938
South Africa :

A very decided and novel proof of the success of the South African Mission is given by the letter of a certain Mr. Schoernan, a Dutch Protestant, who owns an extensive estate near Johannesburg. This gentleman wrote directly to the Apostolic Delegate for the Union of South Africa requesting that Fathers Mackey and Garahy should be invited to give a series of sermons and lectures to the non Catholics throughout the Transvaal. He had heard the sermons of these two Jesuit Fathers at the Catholic Congress at Cape Town, and concluded at once that the method and style of treatment of their sermons would make an immense appeal. He himself would be prepared to assist in the financing of such a scheme. “Surely”, he concluded, “Ireland could easily afford to forgo their services for a few months longer.”
The Delegate sent on the letter to Dr. O'Leary, Vicar Apostolic of the Transvaal. to answer. Dr, O'Leary explained that the two Fathers had to cancel many other invitations owing to pressure of work at home.
Mr. Schuman answered the Archbishop through Dr. O'Leary still pressing his own proposal.
The Press, including the Protestant Press, has been equally emphatic as to the success of the Mission. A contributor to “The Daily Dispatch”, a Protestant paper writes :
“A mission for Catholics in East London is now in progress at the Church of the Immaculate Conception. It is being conducted by two ]esuits, Father Mackey and Father Garahy, members of the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus..... Hitherto, missions in this diocese have been preached, almost exclusively, by members of the Redemptorist Order.... , A Jesuit mission, therefore, is a change, because the methods and style of the Jesuits are different from those of the other Orders in the Church. There is not so much thunder about the Jesuits. They preach more the mercy of God than His anger and His justice. They appeal more to one's intellect and sense of reason than to the emotions.
It has been essentially a mission to Catholics. Controversial subjects have been avoided, but in the sermons there has been a wealth of information and teaching invaluable even to those firmly established in the Catholic faith. To those not of the faith who have attended the mission, the discourses of the two eloquent Jesuits must have been a revelation. I, a practising Catholic all my life, have heard many missions, both in this country and throughout Great Britain, but I cannot recall one in which the teaching of the Church has been so simply and so convincingly substantiated, or one in which the sinner has been so sympathetically, yet effectively, shown the error of his ways. The sermons were all magnificent orations in which facts, arguments, and reasoning were blended into a convincing whole.”
In another place the same contributor writes :
“Masterly sermons were preached by Father Mackey and Father Garahy explaining, as they have never been explained to the people of East London before, the object of man's life in this world, the difficulties he has to contend with......they have shown how the evils of the present day have all arisen from the misuse of men's reason, how the abandonment of God, and the development of a materialistic creed have set class against class and nation against nation, how man's well-being on earth has been subordinated to the pagan ideas of pleasure and financial prosperity........There has been nothing sensational or emotional in any discourse, but the malice of sin has been shown in all its viciousness.
It has been an education listening to these two Jesuits. The lessons of history, biblical and worldly, have been explained in language that carried conviction, and the teaching of the Church on the problems discussed has been put forward with unassailable lucidity.”

Irish Province News 24th Year No 1 1949
Fr. Mackey was installed as acting Master of Novices to the Alexian Brothers, Cobh on 8th September last. Details of his work appear below.
Fr. Mackey, writes from St. Joseph's Court, Cobh on 13th November :
“You ask me for some information concerning my whereabouts and my work. I was installed here as Master of Novices on 8th September last. With me is an Assistant - a Brother from Manchester. He corresponds to our Socius.
St. Joseph's Court was the property of a Mr. Jackson-bennett. The house is quite suitable for a Religious Congregation. It is just two miles from Cobh - rather ungettatable either by cycling or walking, owing to some enormous hills.
The Alexian Brothers follow the Rule of St. Augustine, and are under a Cardinal Protector at Rome. They have the usual six months postulancy, followed by two full years of noviceship. At the end of the Novitiate they take the customary simple vows. These are renewed for two single years, then for three full years, after that for life. At present they have numerous houses in Germany and the States; five in England, two in Ireland, one in Belgium and one in Switzerland.
They take charge of hospitals, asylums and convalescent homes. On leaving the Novitiate many of them do a three years course of professional nursing at the York City Hospital.
Their religious habit is somewhat similar to that of the Redemptorist Fathers. It is of black cloth, a girdle of black leather, a scapular from shoulders to ankles, white colar, a capifolium and full black mantle with a cowl not unlike that of the Cistercians. Their Superior General is a German-American. He is very keen on all things Ignatian. He has ordered that every novice in the States, is to be presented with Fr. Rickaby's three volumes of Rodriguez on his Vow Day. They are all in favour of the Long Retreat but cannot have it for the present, owing to structural changes to be completed.
They lead a very monastic life here. The Benedicamus Domino is at 5 a.m., all lights out at a quarter to ten. They have three quarters of an hour meditation before Mass, which is at 6 a.m. Their day, which consists of the usual noviceship routine - five exhortations a week - is four times broken for Community prayer. The Office of the Passion is recited every day in common. I have just 20 Postulants and Novices at the moment, with some others due to come after the New Year.
Their Provincial bas just sent every novice a copy of the new edition of Fouard's Life of Christ, two volumes in one. It is a splendid edition (12/6) but without notes. I hope to get them to memorize the most practical passages from a concordance of the Four Gospels, at the rate of a few verses a day - to make them familiar with the sacred text”.

Irish Province News 43rd Year No 2 1968

Obituary :

Fr Ernest Mackey SJ (1884-1968)

Fr. Ernest Mackey died in St. Vincent's private hospital on January 18th. He was 84 years of age on January 9th. Despite the fact being known to his friends that he had had a stroke several weeks previously, the news came as a bit of a shock. Anyone who visited him in hospital considered the stroke was a light one. Some of his closest friends postponed their visit. They did not consider there was any urgency.
Amongst these was Frank Duff, founder and president of the Legion of Mary. For over 40 years they were close friends. When the message of Fr. Mackey's death reached Frank by phone, he exclaimed, “He was a Trojan character”. There are very many priests and religious to-day who would re-echo that sentiment.
Ernest Mackey was a man of sterling character. He had inherited much from his uncle, the late Fr. Michael Brosnan, C.M. He often spoke of this man who for nearly half a century was Spiritual Director in St. Patrick's College, Maynooth. In fact he was the only relative that he ever mentioned. Frequently when in the mood he quoted some of Fr. Brosnan's sayings. For example “Be a gentleman from the soles of your feet to the tips of your fingers, and have those clean”. He spoke of his uncle's death in these words : “He wanted no visitors in his last days, left all letters unopened, and looked at God”.
There was a majesty and a dignity about Ernest Mackey. He always carried himself erect and walked with measured step. One of his disciples remarked that he had a touch of the “Omnipotens Sempiterne Deus”. He had a presence at all times, and in all places. He walked up the Church, or emerged from the sacristy on his way to the pulpit, with arms slightly extended as a large bird about to make an impressive flight. Everything about his ministry was majestic and even overpowering. The sharp features, the very deep collar, the long flowing soutane - all contributed to this presence.
This dignity and grandeur emanated from his realisation of his priesthood. He felt himself as a man specially designated by God - to a great apostolate. Never did he seem to lose sight of this. He spoke with authority. He had that virtue of forthrightness. It never left him all his life. He detested sham and humbug. He hated hypocrisy, and make-believe, and with characteristic gesture swept them away. His conversation was always a tonic. It was wonderful at times to listen to a conversation between himself and Fr. John M. O'Connor, who pre-deceased him by ten years. Both were remarkable men, each in his own sphere. They left an abiding impression on youth. Men and priests of this calibre are the great need of to-day.
From what has been written it is clear that Ernest Mackey lived his name. He was determined and dedicated to his allotted work. He paid not the slightest attention to critics. He never courted popularity. He was earnestness personified. He rarely, if ever, commented on the preaching of his colleagues. As the Superior of the Mission staff for fifteen years he relied on his men to do the work assigned above all to preach the Spiritual Exercises. On one occasion as he came into the sacristy after the Rosary he said to a young colleague: “You are going out to preach on sin. Don't touch the Angels”. Fr. Mackey's pulpit preaching was not his strongest point. It was unique in its way. He had an amazing intonation of voice that ranged over a whole octave. People listened more because of his dominating presence than of his logic, He could stop for over a minute, and shoot out in a commanding voice a text of the Gospel that seemingly had no bearing on his subject.
What was Ernest Mackey's strongest point? What was it in his priestly life that was a creation of his own, and that will persist down the years? Undoubtedly his Boys Retreats, and through these his amazing success in vocations to the priesthood. In this matter he was out on his own, and the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus owes a lot to him.
This work came into being under the provincialate of the late and great Fr. John Fahy. During his decade in Belvedere as Prefect of Studies, Fr. Fahy was responsible for a number of vocations to the Maynooth Mission to China among the boys of the College. He was Rector for six of these ten years and had great influence over boys. He must have asked himself many a time why some very outstanding vocations were lost to the Society. These boys wanted China. It came as no surprise therefore, that during his provincialate, Fr. Fahy opened our mission in Hong Kong. This demanded a big campaign for vocations. Ernest Mackey, already showing talent along this line, was the man for the job. He was put in charge of the Mission Staff. This left him free to take on all the boys' retreats possible. He gave most of these himself, and entrusted many into the capable hands of Fr. Tim Halpin and Fr. Richard Devane.
It was then that Fr. Mackey perfected his vocation technique. Boarding school retreats were lifted up to a high level. The full vigour of the Ignatian Exercises was applied. He stressed real prayer, conquest of self, a sense of the malice of sin, the call of the King, and all the salient thoughts of Ignatius. He got results.
But there was the vast field of day schools, especially the secondary schools of the Irish Christian Brothers. Those in Dublin could be catered for in the Retreat House at Rathfarnham. There Frs. P. Barrett and Richard Devane were already doing wonderful work with week-ends for working men and with mid-week retreats for senior boys of the Dublin day-schools.
Something must be done for the schools outside Dublin, It must be to the lasting credit of Ernest Mackey that he rose nobly and energetically to the occasion. He introduced a truly magnificent semi-enclosed retreat in the school itself. The system can be studied in the printed volume “Our Colloquium”. This is not the place to discuss that great compilation so splendidly edited by the late Fr. Michael F. Egan. Sufficient to say that the greatest contribution was that of Fr. Mackey. He supplied every detail on these retreats. He followed Ignatius rigidly. His great success was due to his placing of the highest ideals of holiness before boys, his whole hearted dedication to the work, his attention to details.
He often in later years spoke of these retreats in schools. He even considered them as of greater value than a fully enclosed retreat in a retreat house. But that was because Fr. Mackey directed them. Arriving at a secondary School he took complete command. He left nothing to chance. He always received the most enthusiastic co-operation from the Brothers. Vocations were needed. “Come after Me and I will make you fishers of men”. Ernest Mackey must have had these words of the Master ever in his mind. He was a fisher for vocations. He was not a lone fisher. He nearly always had fishermen among the Brothers. Their business it was to indicate where he was to cast his net. He had the magnetism - almost the hypnotic power - to attract the good fish. He was human and could make mistakes. But the man who makes no mistakes makes nothing. He landed a great haul for the Society and for the priesthood. He toiled hard. He toiled long.
The secret of his success is obvious from what has been written. He employed the means that Ignatius himself applied to himself and to all others - the Spiritual Exercises. One cannot imagine Ernest Mackey asking the Brothers in a school, the nuns in a convent, the priests in a diocese, what he should say to them, or to those under them, in a retreat. He was eloquent in his closing years on what he called the utter nonsense of such enquiries.
He remained the same Ernest Mackey to the end. He spoke of all those in the Province who were “over 70” as the Old Society. He loved to recall men like Michael Browne, Henry Fegan, and Michael Garahy. He lived in that age and never modernised. As a result his last years were spent in retirement in Manresa House. There he loved to meet the Old Society.
Now he has gone to the real Old Society in Heaven; but his work goes on in the army of Christ on earth, the ranks of which he helped to fill while on earth. May he rest in peace.

MacSheahan, John, 1885-1956, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/753
  • Person
  • 08 December 1885-30 October 1956

Born: 08 December 1885, Dun Laoghaire, County Dublin
Entered: 06 September 1902, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1917, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1922, Coláiste Iognáid, Galway
Died: 30 October 1956, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Chaplain in the First World War.

by 1912 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1918 Military Chaplain : 6th RI Regiment, BEF France

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 32nd Year No 1 1957

Obituary :

Fr John MacSheahan (1887-1956)

When the death of Fr. MacSheahan was announced, a Jesuit said to me: “The Society has another martyr in heaven”. Anyone who knew him intimately, especially for the past ten or twelve years, will have no difficulty in endorsing that statement. Instinctively one thinks of him as a man enduring suffering, constant and severe, and sustaining throughout an infectious spirit of cheerfulness and trust in God. “How are you, Fr. John?” I asked him on meeting him one day in Gardiner Street. At that moment he was the wan, emaciated figure, slightly stooped, that gave you a shock if you had not seen him for a period. “How am I? Why, I'm grand! Of course you know I have lost the sight of this eye, and the hearing of this ear”, - and he indicated both, covering them for a moment with his open palm. Then the “tummy gives me no end of trouble. If only I could live without eating! And the noises go on all the time in my old head”. “You have them at this moment?” “At this moment there is a throbbing up there like an engine; it never stops, day and night. But otherwise I'm fine!!”
“Otherwise I'm fine”. That is the characteristic note. I saw him at recreation that same evening, and he laughed and joked and told stories in his own inimitable way. But who knows the heroic effort demanded daily, hourly, by this struggle extending over his whole life - for he was always a delicate man and calling for even greater courage as the end approached? This man of indomitable will I saw one day in his room and he broke down completely. His head sank into his hands and he wept freely. “It's not easy going. Life is so useless and so lonely. I wish God would take me or give me some health and relief”. But at once he gripped himself, apologised for letting me see him weeping, and by the time I was going, the familiar patient smile was back again. But the incident gave me an inkling into the depths of depression that must have often crushed and nearly overpowered him. But nobody knew,
His optimism was irrepressible. He would tell you of his confidence in Our Lady during a novena he was making in her honour as one of her feasts came on. And when there was no cure and no relief Fr. John grinned and braced himself to carry on. He was in high glee when the Eucharistic Fast was mitigated. He could now have a cup of coffee in the early morning and “I don't know myself, it's such a help saying Mass”. He was keenly appreciative of even a tiny act of thoughtfulness...a letter or a visit or a promise of prayer. He told me at considerable length and with obviously deep gratitude in his voice of a reply he had received from a Superior. He had been lamenting the fact that he was such an expense and unable to do any work. He was assured on both points. He was reminded that his sufferings, borne with such Christlike patience, were beyond doubt calling down immense blessings and graces on the Province. I know how he treasured that word.
The moment he got any respite he was all out to give himself to work. At Gardiner Street he exercised a fruitful apostolate, doing full-time as “operarius”, director of the Irish-speaking Sodality, and settling down to “figures” - the House accounts. He was ever on the watch to multiply deeds of charity, visits to the sick, letters of advice or congratulation or of sympathy. All was done unobtrusively; much remained, and remains, entirely hidden. Often on returning from some errand of mercy he would get a “black-out” and collapse in the street. Such incidents never deterred him. He would joke about them afterwards. He would tell you of the four or five different occasions upon which people thought he was dead or dying.
He enjoyed in particular describing the night when, recovering from a “black out," he began to realise he was lying in a bed, and surrounded by lighted candles, They must surely believe that this time he really is dead, and he wondered hazily if perhaps they mightn't be right! But again he came back from the tomb. The electricity had failed that night, that was all.
Fr. MacSheahan entered the Society at Tullabeg, in 1902, when he was seventeen. His tales of the sayings and doings of a renowned Fr. Socius provided many a good laugh, nor did they lose in the telling. He went to Stonyhurst for philosophy, to Clongowes, and Mungret for “colleges”, and he was ordained at Milltown Park in 1917. He was chaplain in France during World War I, was twice Rector of Galway, worked in the Church and School at the Crescent, and, in 1940, began his long association with Gardiner Street, He went to Rathfarnham in 1955, having himself suggested the change, which he found hard to make - because he recognised he was no longer equal to the work at Gardiner Street.
As chaplain he won the M.C. and a “bar” to it. When this distinction was commented on at his Jubilee, he replied that it meant little to him. The two letters he prized, the only two, after his name were |S.J.” His daily life was the most compelling proof that he spoke the truth,
He was a fluent Irish speaker and all his life an enthusiastic supporter of the language and culture. While his work in this field was characterised by that energy and zeal which he brought to every task, he would have been the last man in the world to obtrude his interest on others. He was unfailingly companionable. His charity at recreation, and at all times, if it did not win others to the Cause he had so much at heart, ensured at least that it did not alienate them from him, nor him from his brethren. Indeed this is understatement.
A truly Christlike priest, this great Jesuit, laden with the Cross, walked unflinchingly the hard road to his Calvary. Far from hardening him, his sufferings developed, rather, that exquisite charity which bears all things, hopes all things, believes all things. Like the Master he loved so ardently, Fr. MacSheahan was obedient even to the death of the Cross. He put the Cross down only when it was impossible for him to carry it any farther. He died in Dublin on 30th October, 1956. “From his childhood”, writes his sister, “John always impressed me with his innocence, simplicity, and humility”. May he rest in peace!

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John MacSheahan 1885-1956
Fr John MacSheahan was a fluent Irish speaker, and all his life he was an enthusiastic supporter of our native language and culture.

He was twice Rector of Galway. The latter part of his life was spent in Gardiner Street, where he directed the Irish Sodality. He was Chaplain in WWII, and he was awarded an MC with a bar to it. But when thus distinction was mentioned at his jubilee celebration, he remarked, that the letters he prized after his name, the only two were SJ.

The last ten years of his life he suffered heroically from all kinds of complaints, and he carried on his work in spite of handicaps. At his own request he was transferred to Rathfarnham, when he felt his usefulness in Gardiner Street was at an end.

He suffered so much at this time that he often asked God to take him home, but he bore his cross obediently and resignedly until God called him on October 30th 1956.

Maher, Thomas P, 1885-1924, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1658
  • Person
  • 10 May 1885-12 February 1924

Born: 10 May 1885, Borrisoleigh, County Tipperary
Entered: 06 September 1902, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 16 May 1918, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1922, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 12 February 1924, Thurles, County Tipperary

Part of the Crescent College, Limerick community at the time of death

by 1907 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1909
by 1910 returned to Australia

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
After his Novitiate he was sent to Stonyhurst for Philosophy and then to Australia for Regency.
He came back to Milltown for Theology, was Ordained there and after Tertianship he was sent back to Australia. However, a pernicious attack of anaemia meant that his passage on the ship to Australia was cancelled, and he slowly wasted away.
He died at the residence of his sister in Thurles 12 February 1924. During his illness the local clergy were most attentive, visiting him daily as his end drew near. He was also frequently visited by the Provincial John Fahy. His remains were brought to Thurles Cathedral. John Harty, Archbishop of Cashel presided. He was later buried at Mungret.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Thomas Maher entered the Society at Tullabeg in September 1902, and after novitiate and juniorate he studied philosophy at Stonyhurst in 1907. In mid-1910 he sailed for Australia and taught at So Patrick's College in 1911 in the middle school years. He was very successful teacher, and as a result was moved to Xavier College, 1912-15, as the second division prefect to fill an urgent vacancy. After returning to Ireland he developed pernicious anaemia, and died from this condition.

Joy, John C, 1884-1950, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/194
  • Person
  • 15 June 1884-23 November 1950

Born: 15 June 1884, Killorglin, County Kerry
Entered: 06 September 1902, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1917, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1922, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 23 November 1950, St Vincent's Hospital, Dublin

Part of Clongowes Wood College SJ community at time of his death.

Older brother of Patrick - RIP 1970, Francis - RIP 1977

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1909 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 26th Year No 1 1951

Clongowes Wood College :
We deeply regret to record the death of Father John Joy, who died on the 2014 November in St. Vincent's Hospital, Dublin. His great sense of humour, his cheerfulness and kindness will long be remembered by his brethren, who were privileged to live with him. Probably the greatest tribute paid to Fr. Joy was the genuine sorrow expressed by the boys of the College when they learnt of his death.
The funeral took place in Clongowes on Saturday, 25th November. Among the very large group of mourners who came to pay their last tribute to a man who had won the affection and esteem of those who knew him, were : Very Rev. Father Provincial, eleven Rectors or Superiors of Houses, as well as a very large body of his fellow-Religious, Monsignor Kissane and a number of Priests of the neighbouring parishes, Mr. McGilligan, Minister for Finance, Commander Crosbie, President of the Clongowes Union, with numerous old Clongownians, and also representatives of numerous Kildare families, both rich and poor. R.I.P.

Irish Province News 26th Year No 2 1951

Obituary :

Father John C Joy

The account of his life that appeared in the papers :

Son of the late Mr. Maurice Joy, Killorglin, John C. Joy was born in 1884. Educated at Clongowes, he entered the Society of Jesus at St. Stanislaus' College, Tullamore, in 1902. He graduated in Classics in the Royal University, being one of the group of students who then resided at 86 St. Stephen's Green, Dublin. He later received the degree of M.A. in Mental and Moral Science, which he studied at St. Mary's Hall, Stonyhurst. His life of the Philosopher Emperor, Marcus Aurelius, which he described as “A Study in Ideals”, was published about that time.
Father Joy was Classical Master at Clongowes for three years preceding his ordination at Milltown Park, Dublin, where he was ordained in 1917. On the completion of his religious training at Tullamore, he was appointed Prefect of Studies and, later, Rector of Mungret College, Limerick. He became Rector of Clongowes in 1922, a position which he held for five years, and was largely responsible for the planning of the new College building erected by his successor Father George Roche.
It was during that period that the present system of Irish Secondary Education replaced that of the old Intermediate Board ; as Chairman of the Catholic Headmasters' Association, Fr. Joy played a notable part in solving the many problems involved. He made a thorough study of the history of Irish education, and with his colleagues of the Association he spared no effort to formulate and carry through a policy in full harmony with Catholic and national ideals.
Later as editor of the “Irish Monthly”, as Vice-Rector of St. Ignatius' College, Galway, and as Rector of the House of Philosophical Studies, Tullamore, he continued to exert an important influence in the sphere of education.
Father Joy was Assistant Director of the Retreat House at Milltown Park 1985-40, and at Rathfarnham Castle 1940-46. In the last named year he was transferred to Clongowes where he laboured till his death as Master and Spiritual Father to the Community. He was a brother of Father Patrick Joy, S.J., former Superior of the Irish Jesuit Mission in China, and of Father Francis Joy, S.J., the present Rector of Mungret College.

An Appreciation.
The outstanding recollection of Father John Joy that remains with me is that of his unfailing goodness of heart. He was one of those happy men who like to hear good about others and to say good about them. It was always a pleasure to meet him, for he was full of interest in what you were doing, or what was happening in your community, or how mutual friends were getting on. And this interest was not a mere idle one. He was ready to translate it into action whenever he could be helpful. He was one of those to whom the younger men in his community could always go for help and sympathy in their difficulties, and he was incessantly busy helping his former pupils to get on in life,
This goodheartedness was the source of another characteristic, his invincible optimism. Once he got interested in any scheme, he could never admit that it was going otherwise than well, or that the difficulties which presented themselves would not be happily solved in the end. He was intensely loyal to his friends and viewed all their achievements in the most favourable light. It may even be granted that his optimism was at times excessive, and led him to deny the existence of defects in institutions, schemes and persons, which were obvious to others. But in our day such an excess is so rare that it may fairly be accounted a virtue. Certainly, one never felt discouraged or depressed by Father Joy. As a superior he was always open to new suggestions, courageous in sanctioning new activities, generous in his recognition of hard work, and quick to recognise the element of success even where it was not
A mere casual acquaintance with Father Joy might give the impression that he was hasty and hence unreliable in judgement, but this was soon corrected by a closer knowledge of him, He had a quick mind, and was prone to express his opinions vigorously and with an apparent intolerance of discussion. But it was noteworthy that when it came to action on any point, be rarely put a foot wrong, and it became clear that he had taken much more account of the views of others than had appeared. The soundness of his judgement was very apparent when one consulted him privately on any point. In public discussion, opposition often tempted him to defend a weak position, but in private he could weigh up admirably both sides of a case. He had wide experience in various fields of work, knew human nature well, and had no small share of the traditional shrewdness of his native county, All these qualities made his opinion well worth listening to.
But for the handicap of ill-health, Father Joy would undoubtedly have played an even greater part in the life of the Province than he did. He was, indeed, a man of very great all-round ability. He was a first class classical scholar, he had a sound knowledge of theology and philosophy, especially of that part of ethics which deals with social questions, his published work on the life of Marcus Aurelius, his pamphlet on Syndicalism and the few articles which he contributed himself when editor of the “Irish Monthly” show that, had circum stances permitted, he might have done excellent work as a writer. He was an excellent teacher, a vigorous and progressive administrator, and had considerable personal influence over a wide circle of friends and acquaintances. The record of his actual achievement is an impressive one, and yet for the better part of his life he was a semi-invalid. He was attacked by neuritis in the arm after the 1918 influenza epidemic. It became more severe during his Rectorship of Clongowes, and from that on, he was rarely free from severe pain. During the last few years of his life he seems to have had some relief, and it was a completely new complaint, internal malignant trouble, that necessitated the severe operation from which he never rallied. It was characteristic of him that he faced the operation, and later death, with high-spirited courage and strong faith. On learning how grave the operation would be, he recalled for his brother, Father Frank, the courageous words of Father Wrafter when told that he was dying, and adapted them to himself, saying: “I have had sixty-seven years of good life, and I am ready if the Lord wants me”.
This brief tribute to the memory of Father Joy would be incomplete without some reference to one of his most lovable characteristics, his affection for his family. The early death of his mother when he was only a Junior, laid upon his shoulders a heavy load of responsibility for the upbringing of a large household of young brothers and sisters. It looked, indeed, as if he would be bound to relinquish his vocation for their sakes. He left himself, however, in the hands of his superiors, who decided against such a step, and his trust in God was rewarded. No man ever devoted himself more wholly to the interests of the Society and the Province, yet he was enabled also to guide and assist his brothers and sisters to the outstandingly successful careers which all of them achieved. To none was he more devoted than to his Jesuit brothers, Father Paddy, and Father Frank, and to them the deep sympathy of the whole Province goes out.

Byrne, Charles, 1886-1967, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/985
  • Person
  • 28 February 1886-22 February 1967

Born: 28 February 1886, Dublin
Entered: 06 September 1902, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 16 May 1918, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1922, Sacred Heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 22 February 1967, Mater Hospital, Dublin

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

by 1907 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 42nd Year No 2 1967

Obituary :

Fr Charles Byrne SJ (1886-1967)

Fr. Charles Byrne was born in Dublin on 28th February 1886. He received his primary education at Synge Street and his secondary education in Belvedere, where he went in 1897. James Joyce was one of his companions but Fr. Charles did not find him a congenial soul. He entered the noviceship at Tullabeg in 1902 and remained there as a junior to study for his B.A. “Work was real, work was earnest”, in those days and he felt grateful to have survived the ordeal unscathed and with a B.A. to boot.
The three years of philosophy were spent at Stonyhurst and on his return to Ireland he was sent for a year to the Crescent where he taught the First Arts class and then for four years, as a teacher, to Clongowes where he had His Grace, Archbishop McQuaid as a pupil. In 1915 he began his theology in Milltown Park and was ordained in May 1918, the early date being due to the conscription scare of that year. At the end of theology he was sent to the Crescent for a year before tertianship and returned there in 1921. For ten years he was operarius, teacher and Minister at the Crescent. Then in 1931 he was transferred to Belvedere where he taught for 29 years without a break. When he retired from teaching he was appointed Superior of Loyola House and then last summer (1966) he returned to Belvedere where he died on 23rd February after the briefest of illnesses.
Of his 65 years in the Society, Fr. Byrne spent 46 in the colleges, doing that work which the General Congregation has again asserted to be one of our most important ministries. He was the kind of totally dedicated teacher that every college wants - for all his activities were centred around the work of the house whether it was teaching or theatricals or games. He had far more of the graces than the average Jesuit and he made use of them in a way that impressed the boys. Thus, he had a fine voice which was heard to advantage at a High Mass; he was a most graceful skater on ice, an elusive half at soccer and so good a hockey player that he was capped for Munster, which must be a Jesuit record.
As a teacher of Latin he used many industriae, mnemonics, rhymes, anecdotes and competitions, so that he rarely had need to order punishment. Then the lazy boy was shamed into working by noticing how hard his master worked for him and he could not help noticing it. Every mark for a theme was duly noted down and every mark in an examination was duly entered so that there was available a complete record of the work of each pupil during his progress through the school. For most of his time at Belvedere Fr. Byrne taught the first divisions in the top years. There was a very close bond between him and his class, so close indeed that when he was replaced by a younger Jesuit they resented losing him and the Prefect of Studies had his work cut out trying to smooth things over.
When Minister at the Crescent Fr. Byrne entered wholeheartedly into the activities of the Cecilian Society and tales of those days are still current in Limerick where he was remembered with affection, as his Christmas post from Limerick testified. On his transfer to Belvedere he put his skill at the disposal of Fr. M. Glynn who had just launched out on his long programme of Gilbert and Sullivan Operas. During opera week Fr. Byrne was a familiar sight in the green room in a khaki dust coat and with neat boxes of grease paint laid out like a surgeon's instruments.
On Fr. Glynn's breakdown Fr. Byrne at a moment's notice stepped into his shoes and with admirable skill and still more admirable patience produced year after year the college opera from 1939 to 1960. He appreciated good singing, good speaking and graceful movement. Year after year to make some forty boys good singers, good speakers and graceful movers called for heroic devotion. Fortunately, like Fr. Glynn, he possessed the secret of attaching the cast to himself so that all were anxious to do their best.
As has been said already any school was glad to have him and the same may be said about any community. The reason was obvious; he was unassuming, considerate and prompt to offer assistance. He was the Prefect of Studies answer to prayer for he considered the work assigned to him on the status had first claims on his time and energy. Only when he had conscientiously done his work did he consider himself free to do work of his own choice.
From our mode of life most of us are inclined to develop marked bachelor characteristics, carelessness of dress, untidy habits and general disregard for what we despise as “the frills”. Others of us react strongly against such ways and Fr. Charles was one of these. He is said to have asked a friend whose dishevelled breviary he viewed with disapproval : “Do you wash your hands after using that book?”
Without being foppish he was always carefully dressed. He took great care of his clothes and made them last a long time. A visit to his room was quite an experience; it was so unlike the typical lair of a Jesuit. Nothing was out of place. Everything was brushed and polished and the humblest furniture decorated.
When he returned to Belvedere last September he endeavoured to follow the order of time as far as possible. And he remained like this to the end. Indeed he was at recreation the evening before he died. Then on the day of his death he celebrated Mass and in the afternoon before dinner walked up and down the corridor saying his beads. Shortly afterwards he was found in his room suffering obviously from a stroke. He was anointed by Fr. B. Murray. A doctor was summoned (Dr. E. Guiney, one of his former pupils) and he advised transfer to hospital. He was brought by ambulance to the Mater, but before he could get treatment he passed quietly away.
He was considerate to the end, dying in the manner that would inconvenience the community as little as possible. May his quiet and gentle soul rest in peace.

Dalton, Patrick J, 1881-1952, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1157
  • Person
  • 11 March 1881-16 January 1952

Born: 11 March 1881, Orange, NSW, Australia
Entered: 12 February 1904, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1917, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1921, St Aloysius College, Milsons Point, Sydney, Australia
Died: 16 January 1952, Loyola Watsonia, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the St Aloysius, Sevenhill, Adelaide, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1907 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1909
by 1919 at Manresa House, Ranchi, Jharkhand, India (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
He came from a well known and wealthy Catholic family from Duntryleague, Orange, NSW, and he was sent to St Ignatius College Riverview for his education. He then went on to study Medicine for four years at Sydney University before entering the Society at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg, Ireland.

1906-1909 After First Vows he was sent to Stonyhurst, England for Philosophy
1910-1914 He returned to Australia for Regency at St Ignatius College Riverview
1914-1917 He was back in Ireland at Milltown Park Dublin for Theology. He didn’t finish his Theology there as he returned to Australia to see his father, who was in poor health.
1917-1919 He finished his Theology and made Tertianship in Ranchi, India
1920-1926 He returned to Australia and was sent to St Aloysius College Sydney as a Teacher, Minister, Prefect of Discipline, Assistant Prefect of Studies and Editor of the “Aloysian”. He also gave lectures at St John’s College in University of Sydney.
1926-1932 He was sent to teach at Riverview, and was Spiritual Father to the boys, in charge of Senior Debating and the Senior Sodality and was for a time the Editor of “Our Alma Mater”. he also continued with his lectures at St John’s. In 1931 he examined the quinquennials.
1932-1951 He was then sent to Sevenhill, where he spent much of his time writing and arranging the early archives of the Province. His work on the archives of St Aloysius College is the only archival source available. He translated many of the early German documents, such as the letters of Father Kranewitter and the diary of Brother Pölzl. He also gave very valuable help to the Archpriest Carroll of Hay ( a Limerick born Priest, PP of Hay, NSW, who translated the “Mysteries of Faith” by Maurice de la Taille SJ in three volumes).

He became well known and appreciated by the people of Clare SA, Sevenhill and Mintaro for his kindness, his quaint sense of humour and for his extraordinary knowledge of history, art and science.
He was a scholar and linguist of considerable attainment. He was not a good disciplinarian and so is value as a teacher of boys was somewhat diminished.

Towards the end of his life he was transferred to Loyola Watsonia. The notes he made for his exhortations as Spiritual Father at Sevenhill show him to have been a man of deep and solid piety.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 27th Year No 2 1952
Obituary :
Died January 16th, 1952
Fr. Patrick Dalton was born on March 11th, 1881, at Orange, N.S.W., Australia, and educated at St. Ignatius' College, Riverview, Sydney. For a few years after leaving school he studied Medicine, but in 1904 came to Ireland and entered the Society at Tullabeg. He studied philosophy at St. Mary's Hall, Stonyhurst, and did his colleges in Australia and theology at Milltown Park where he was ordained in 1917. As a priest he taught for several years in the colleges in Australia, and for the last two decades of his life devoted himself to the study of the records of the Society in the archives of the old College of Sevenhill, S.A. There Fr. Dalton's knowledge of German and his keen historical sense enabled him to translate and preserve for future historians of the Society in Australia the many documents of interest left by the Austrian Fathers and Brothers, who founded the Society's work in that country.
Fr. Dalton also collaborated with the Ven. Archdeacon Carroll, P.P., Hay, N.S.W., in his translation and publication of Fr. De la Taille's Mysterium Fidei.
He died on January 10th, 1952, at the Novitiate, Loyola, Watsonia, whither he had retired a few months previously, when failing health prevented his continuing his work at Sevenhill.

Keane, William, 1885-1960, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1496
  • Person
  • 27 June 1885-13 August 1960

Born: 27 June 1885, Nhill, Victoria, Australia
Entered: 23 February 1901, Loyola, Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Ordained: 16 May 1918, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1921, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 13 August 1960, St Vincent's Hospital, Darlinghurst, Sydney - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1909 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1912 in Australia - Regency
by 1920 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Bill Keane was educated at Xavier College, Kew, 1896-1900, being dux in 1900 at the age of fifteen. He was very gifted, quick and alert. He entered the Jesuits, 23 February 1901, and was a novice under Aloysius Sturzo at Greenwich, Sydney. He went to Tullabeg, Ireland, for his second year noviceship and juniorate, graduating from University College Dublin in 1908 with a first class degree in mathematics. Later he gained a MA.
Then he proceeded to Stonyhurst, England, for philosophy, and returned to Xavier College, Kew, for regency from 1910-15. Theology studies, 1915-19, were at Milltown Park, Dublin, and his tertianship at Tronchiennes, Belgium.
During his studies he completed a well respected thesis on Pragmatism. He also drew attention to the importance of Milton's Latin correspondence, and while at Riverview made a notable defence of truth in the presentation of modern European history against the age-old errors that had been fed to school children and university students in the protestant world.
He returned to Xavier College, 1920-25, being prefect of studies in 1922. At this time he proved himself an outstanding teacher of Latin, history, English, mathematics and science, but it was in mathematics that he really excelled. He had the gift of making the most abstract problems appear simple and easy to solve.
He took a great interest in all forms of sport, and could discourse freely on cricket, football and rowing. In cricket, however, he was probably at his best. He loved umpiring matches and must have spent hours on the main oval at Xavier. He had an unusual collection of cricket problems that he propounded to the boys and the community with the greatest delight. He had a wonderful memory and could relate the achievements of famous batsmen and bowlers in Australia and in England.
He was editor of the Xavierian, in which he published a series of articles entitled “Twenty Years of Public Schools Sport”. He had a great knowledge of Old Xaverians and stories connected with them.
He taught at Riverview and St Aloysius' College, Sydney, 1926-35, and lectured in philosophy at St John's College, University of Sydney, 1930-33. He professed philosophy at Loyola College, Watsonia, 1936-38 before the philosophate moved to Canisius College, Pymble, in 1939.
Then Keane was appointed rector of Canisius, and teacher of logic and ontology. When theology began in 1940, he taught fundamental theology, dogma, church history and oriental
questions at various times. He returned to teaching mathematics at Riverview in 1954, but, after stroke later that year, was confined to hospital, where he died six years later. For the last two years he was speechless.
While in Sydney, Keane was much sought after by bishops, priests and religious The apostolic delegate asked him to undertake the delicate work of amalgamating the Mercy sisters. He was also asked to prepare papers on Catholic Action, and he was heavily involved in the public debate on the “New Education” of which he did not approve He was a traditionalist in thought and action, and believed that the past provided the best theory and guidelines for action in education, theology and social thought.
He was well versed in the Jesuit theory of education, especially as outlined in the “Ratio Studiorum”, and was instrumental in calling and organising the first Jesuit secondary education conference in the province in 1933.
He also took an interest in the Sisters of St Joseph. At the request of the Cardinal Archbishop of Sydney he collected and set in order the official documents concerning their foundress, Mother Mary MacKillop. These were forwarded to Rome with a view to her beatification.
Keane was a very gifted man at the classics, science, mathematics, philosophy, theology, preaching and retreat giving. As a teacher he had the ability to make even the arid scholasticism of the textbooks a gripping and humane experience. His supreme gift was his appreciation of the wider context of any system of education, and his unfailing encouragement of those with the adventurous spirit to explore for themselves. He was an interesting and well-informed speaker who possessed a ready and quick mind, and a fine power of expression. Notwithstanding this gift, he still prepared his sermons and lectures with very great care and labor.
However, he was not noted for his prudence or administrative gifts. He could be very petty in administering religious order in the theologate. Perhaps his greatest gift was teaching boys - he was very clear, methodical, and a meticulously accurate teacher of mathematics. An outstanding trait of his character was the lively interest he took in everyone he met, and in their work.
Those who lived with him found him a lively companion and the focus of many community stories. His last long illness, and his inability to speak, was a great cross to him, yet was borne courageously In his death, the Australian province lost one of its most brilliant members, and one of its more colourful personalities.

Note from Dermot Hogan Entry
His main work was teaching moral theology and canon law at Canisius College, Pymble, becoming rector in 1942. His presence there was strength during a blustery time under the rectorship of the brilliant William Keane.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 36th Year No 1 1961
Obituary :
Fr William Keane (1885-1960)
Fr. William Keane was born in Australia on 27th June, 1885. We read that in 1896 he came from Hawthorn to Xavier College, Melbourne, that he was a gifted student, quick and alert and that he won many prizes and distinctions, ending his time at Xavier by being Dux of the College.
On 23rd February, 1901 he entered the Irish Province of the Society at Loyola, Greenwich, Sydney, as the Australian Province was not established until about thirty years later. The Master of Novices was Fr. Sturzo, who had been a distinguished Provincial, Rector of Milltown Park and Master of Novices in Ireland, before he went to Australia to be Master of Novices there for many years. Br. Keane happened to be the last novice received by Fr. Sturzo, and when Br. Pat Griffin took his vows, he was the sole surviving novice. Thus it was that he was transferred to Tullabeg for his second year, and Loyola ceased to be a Noviceship.
He took his first rows on 23rd February, 1903, and remained as a Junior at Tullabeg until September 1905. From that date to 1908 we find him in the Catalogue at University College, 86 St. Stephen's Green, Dublin, where he had as fellow Juniors such gifted students as Daniel Finn, Alfred O'Rahilly, Jeremiah Murphy and John Joy. Fr. O'Rahilly is now the only survivor of that brilliant group. Mr. Keane took his degree and got his M.A. on a thesis.
He did his Philosophy in two years at Stonyhurst and returned to Xavier College, Melbourne, in 1911. During his “Colleges” he proved himself an outstanding teacher. He taught a variety of subjects, including Classics, History, English, Mathematics and Science, but it was in Mathematics that he really excelled. We read that he had the gift of making the most abstract problems appear simple and easy to solve. Besides he took an interest in all forms of sport in the College, cricket, football and rowing, he loved umpiring cricket matches and he was Editor of The Xaverian,
In 1915 he returned to Ireland to study Theology at Milltown Park, and he was ordained on 18th May, 1918. After his fourth year he did his tertianship at Tronchiennes, Belgium, and went back to Australia at the end of 1920. He made his final vows of Profession on 15th August, 1921. His first appointment as priest was to Xavier College, Melbourne, where he became Prefect of Studies in 1922. He taught at St. Aloysius College, Sydney, from 1924 to 1932. He was then appointed Prefect of Studies at Riverview College, a position he held until 1939, when he was named Rector of Canisius College, Pymble, where he professed Theology until 1954. He then returned to Riverview to continue his favourite work of teaching Mathematics.
It was during this period at Riverview that the first signs of his illness came upon him. He noticed one morning that he could not raise his arm to shave. Paralysis had set in. He was sent to St. Vincent's Hospital, where he remained for nearly six years, and was moved from there to the Sacred Heart Hospice. He died on 18th August, 1960. For seven years he had been paralysed and for the last two he was unable to speak. He bore his sufferings with wonderful resignation, cheerfulness and patience. It was a pleasure to visit him in the early years of his illness. He lay in bed, unable to move, cheerful, abreast of all the news of the day and interested in everything. One came away from his bedside with the greatest admiration for his courage and power of endurance.
Fr. P. J. Stephenson sums up his life in the Society: “It would be difficult indeed to record all that Fr. Keane did for the glory of God. Bishops, priests and religious all sought his advice. The Apostolic Delegate asked him to undertake the delicate work of amalgamating the Mercy Nuns. It was work that required patience and tact, and he accomplished it with great distinction, and he won the complete confidence of everyone.
He also took an interest in the Sisters of St. Joseph. At the request of the Cardinal Archbishop of Sydney he collected and set in order all the documents on their foundress, Mother Mary McKillop, and these were forwarded to Rome with a view to her beatification.
In the death of Fr. Keane, the Australian Province of the Society has lost one of its most brilliant members, and one of its most colourful personalities. He had done the work God had given him to do, and when the Lord asked for the sacrifice of inaction and suffering, Fr. Keane accepted it courageously, and carried it out most cheerfully”. May he rest in peace.

O'Mara, Thomas, 1882-1933, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1927
  • Person
  • 11 September 1882-24 February 1933

Born: 11 September 1882, Adelaide, Australia
Entered: 07 September 1904, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 16 May 1918, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1921, Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 24 February 1933, St Mary’s, Miller St, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Older brother of Richard O’Mara - RIP 1977

by 1908 at Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands (TOLO) studying
by 1909 at Kasteel Gemert, Netherlands (TOLO) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1910

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Thomas O’Mara, brother of Richard, came from a well known Adelaide family, prominent in business, which donated “Ellangowan” to the Society. A window in the chapel at Riverview is a memorial to him. O'Mara was educated at Xavier College and came to Riverview in 1896, entering the Society, 7 September 1904, at Tullabeg. Having completed his noviciate and juniorate studies, O’Mara studied philosophy at Gemert, Holland.
He returned to Australia for regency at Riverview, 1910-15, where he was editor of “Our Alma Mater”, and a division prefect. He returned to Ireland and Milltown Park for theology studies in 1915. He was ordained priest in 1918. Tertianship followed at Tullabeg, 1919-20.
His first appointment back in Australia was to Xavier College where he was hall prefect, choirmaster, and minister, and involved with debating. He taught later at St Patrick's College,
1930-31, and was appointed headmaster of Burke Hall, 1931-32. He spent a few years, 1928-30, in the parish of Hawthorn. However, his health began to decline and he went to Sydney, dying soon after his arrival.
O’Mara is remembered as a happy religious. His cheerfulness was characteristic of his life. His students remembered him for his kindness and helpfulness, which made him very approachable and encouraging.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 8th Year No 2 1933
Obituary :
Father Thomas O’Mara - Australia Viceprovince (ASL)
Father O'Mara died in Australia on Sunday, 19th February, 1933.
He was born 11th September, 1882. On 7th September, 1904, he began his novitiate at Tullabeg, and when it was over spent another year there as Junior. He was then sent to Gemert where he put in three years as Philosopher. On returning to Australia in 1910 he was stationed at Riverview where he remained for give years as Master, Prefect, Editor of “Alma Mater”. 1915 saw him back in Ireland for Theology at Milltown Park, and when the four years were over, Tullabeg once more as Tertian.
Back again in Australia , in 1921 he was appointed to Xavier, Kew. and here he worked for seven years, four of them as Minister, then to Hawthorn as Oper for two. In 1930 we find him at St. Patrick's with “an. 14 mag” after his name.

Roche, Daniel, 1882-1961, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/2056
  • Person
  • 22 October 1882-13 November 1961

Born: 22 October 1882, Castleisland, County Kerry
Entered: 07 September 1899, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1915, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1921, Sacred Heart College SJ, Limerick
Died: 13 November 1961, St John’s Hospital, Limerick

Part of the Crescent College, Limerick community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

First World War chaplain

by 1906 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1912 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1917 Military Chaplain : 96th (CP) Field Ambulance, BEF France
by 1918 Military Chaplain : 18 KLR, BEF France

◆ Jesuits in Ireland :

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

Fr Daniel Roche SJ, 97th (C. P.) Field Ambulance (06 July 1916):
I have been in a dug out up at the front line for the last fortnight, during the bombardment and four days of the battle... I have seen some sights for the last few days which I shall not readily forget. It has been a very very hard time which I would not have missed...I am in splendid form, or will be when I have had some sleep. Unfortunately I have been unable to say Mass during that time.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 37th Year No 1 1962
The Sacred Heart Church and College
Father Daniel Roche
On November 13th Fr. Dan Roche had a very happy and most peaceful death quite in keeping with that deep serenity that marked his life. He had a slight heart attack a week previously and since then had been in St. John's hospital, One could see from the reaction to the sad news the extent of the community's esteem and affection for the late Fr. Roche, which affection was so obvious also last spring when he had to go to hospital following an attack of 'flu. In the days which followed his death we fully realised the great blessing that an aged religious like Fr. Roche can bring on a community where he was often spotlighted and made the centre of recreation, recounting for us the stories of the past. Fr. Roche often spoke of the deeds of his long-deceased contemporaries and when he mentioned Fr. John Sullivan (a fellow-novice) he seemed to relive those noviceship days. Indeed it was more than a coincidence that Father Dan went to his Maker on the feast of St. Stanislaus. Fr. Roche is buried in the Mungret cemetery beside Fr. Barragry, Fr. O'Connell and Fr. McWilliams - those stalwarts of the Crescent church, who as confessors and preachers, quite subconsciously won the hearts of Limerick. Indeed only recently a nun from the St. Joseph of Cluny Sisters asked for a mortuary card of Fr. McWilliams, and on receiving it, wrote thus to Fr. Rector: “A thousand thanks indeed for the mortuary card. I cannot tell you how much my mother will appreciate it as Fr. McWilliams was her best friend in Limerick, In fact she prays to him and considers him a great saint as in his lifetime he did wonderful things for her. I can thank him also for the grace of my religious vocation”.

Obituary :
Fr Daniel Roche (1882-1961)
Fr. Dan Roche died in St. John's Hospital, Limerick, on Monday, November 13th, St. Stanislaus' Day, after a brief illness lasting a little over a week.
An examination of the Catalogue in an effort to trace Fr. Roche's career in the Province reveals something which is somewhat out of the ordinary. The chronological list is as follows :
1899 (Sept. 7th): Entered Noviceship at Tullabeg (one year ahead of Fr. John Sullivan.
1901 Junior in Tullabeg.
1902 Teaching Latin and Greek in Galway.
1903 Prefect of Discipline in Clongowes.
1905 Philosopher at Stonyhurst.
1906 Study Prefect at Clongowes (for five years).
1911 Finished Philosophy at Louvain.
1912 Theologian at Milltown
1915 Ordained priest at Milltown.
1916 Chaplain in British Army in World War One. Won Military Cross
1919 Tertian Father at Tullabeg.
1920 Teacher and Games Master at the Crescent.
1923 Teacher at Clongowes.
1924-1933 Member of the Mission Staff.
1933-1961 Operarius at the Crescent.

It is not an easy task to give even a fairly adequate account of Fr. Dan Roche, as he was a very reserved and reticent man, for the most part, and one could live for a long time with him and yet know little about him.
Rarely indeed did he reveal anything of his real self and then, not so much by what he said as by what he did. One has to depend, therefore, upon the few who knew him somewhat more intimately to get some insight into the true character of the man. One who was a fellow-novice writes of him :
“Fr. Dan was a great character. I met him first on September 7th, 1899, at Portarlington on our way to Tullabeg, and we became life long friends. He was a solidly good religious, always ready to give sound reasons for the faith that was in him. He was a good conversationalist, well read, and proficient in all kinds of games and sports and, naturally, he became a kind of a hero to the novices and juniors at Tullabeg. But that never went to his head and he had no use for pretence or ostentation, and hence he could not suffer fools gladly, He was, I always thought, a strong character, or a "he-man" as he used to say when speaking of a third party. He evidently made a good impression in the army, for during many years after the war, he used to get letters from officers and men with whom he had come in contact”.
Few of Fr. Roche's friends heard much about his experiences as an army chaplain in the first World War. He was extremely reticent on the subject. Shortly after his ordination to the priesthood, he volunteered for service with the British Forces and was posted to a Field Ambulance in France. His real active service, however, was with a front-line battalion in the trenches of Flanders, and it was only a fitting tribute to his determination and courage that he was decorated with the coveted Military Cross for distinguished service on the battle-field.
After his tertianship in Tullabeg and four years of teaching at the Crescent and Clongowes, Fr. Roche was appointed to the mission staff where again he had an outlet for the zeal and self-sacrifice so conspicuous in his army career. From time to time, when he was in a more talkative mood, he would recall incidents and relate stories - always extremely well told - of his missionary experiences up and down the country.
In 1933 he returned to the Crescent and for nine years directed the Apostleship of Prayer Association and the Holy Hour. During this time and his remaining years in Limerick-twenty-eight years in all--he endeared himself to the patrons of the Sacred Heart Church. He was particularly noted for his zeal in the confessional and for the practical common sense which he displayed in his approach to the various problems which he solved for his penitents. Quietly and unobtrusively he comforted the sick and the afflicted and those who really got to know him found in him a true and sincere friend.
In community life he was pleasant and good-humoured and for one who was remarkable for a retiring and studious disposition—he was an omnivorous reader he took a kindly and sympathetic interest in the many and varied interests of a busy College.
If ever a Jesuit died in action it was Fr. Roche, He was busily engaged in the church up to the end. He heard Confessions for several hours on the three days prior to the fatal heart attack. In fact, he was in his confessional until 9 p.m. on the previous night. He died as he would have wished-ever ready for the call, giving himself generously to the service of the Lord. For Fr. Roche there was one motto : Give and do not count the cost.

Frost, Edmund, 1884-1931, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1333
  • Person
  • 17 July 1884-17 June 1931

Born: 17 July 1884, Newmarket-on-Fergus, County Clare
Entered: 12 November 1901, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1916, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1921, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 17 June 1931, St Benedict’s Hospital, Malvern, Melbourne - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931
by 1906 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - PBS Cork student

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
He Entered the Society at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg under Michael Browne.

1905-1908 After First Vows and Juniorate at Tullabeg he was sent to Stonyhurst for Philosophy
1908-1913 He was sent to Clongowes for Regency, teaching Latin, Greek and Mathematics.
1913-1917 He was sent to Milltown Park for Theology
1917-1919 He was sent to Tullabeg teaching
1919-1922 He made his Tertianship at Tullabeg, and stayed working there for another two years as Minister.
1922-1931 He was sent to Australia and in 1923 was made Rector of Xavier College Kew, and he died in office in 1931.

When he died, Xavier College received glowing tributes acknowledging his outstanding qualities as priest, scholar and gentleman. That said, when he was appointed some in the community did not appreciate his leadership style. Compared to previous regimes, his discipline appeared somewhat lax, and some thought the College would suffer under his new ideas. But the doubts did not last. A few years later, Jesuits writing to Rome observed that despite the freedom granted to parents and boys, Edmund governed well. They praised the religious spirit among the Jesuits, boys and ex-students alike. Religious vocations increased. He was also praised for his great kindness and holiness, as well as his ability to relate well with all kinds of people.

As a person he appeared to have great personal character and qualities. He won the hearts of all by his natural, simple and unassuming manner. He was eminently approachable, genuinely sincere in his relationship s with all, possessed sound judgement, and instinctively avoided all appearances of haste. He was quite dispassionate in decision making and processed a strong sense of justice. His wisdom was also appreciated. Beyond all these human qualities his deep spirituality was most appreciated.

During his years as Rector he transformed the environment of the school. He was responsible for developing the spiritual life of the College to the extent that it effectively permeated the whole environment. The impersonal context of previous years was changed, he deliberately raised the standard of comfort, reduced student monotony by introducing new activities for boarders, improved the playing fields and in general gave more freedom to approximate College life to Home conditions. He was determined that school ought to be a second home, and hoped Old Boys would have happy memories of their days at Xavier.

As an educator he was conservative but wise, with quiet enthusiasm and genuine interest in every aspect of College life. Each year he indicated his appreciation of the year’s achievements. His comments were always encouraging even when suggesting the need for greater effort. He urged students to continue studies at University, supporting the newly established Newman College. He encouraged the Dramatic Society, The Wireless Club, the St Vincent de Paul Society and all aspects of the College sporting life. No one was more excited when the school won the cricket championship for the first time in 1923 and again in 1924, and the football championship for the second time in 1924.

The spiritualisation of the College was above all reflected in his efforts to build the Chapel, which he believed would help counteract the growing materialism in society, reflected in secular education. He wanted the Chapel to be “A Message of Faith to the people of Melbourne”. And so it was built in the grand style of the day, high on a hill.

He also gave great support to the Old Boys, and each year he commended the Old Xavierian Association to all. He believed its members “breate the atmosphere of loyalty to religion, to Australia and to Xavier College:. He articulated the ideal that ex-students continued the good work done at school, by keeping contact through the Association. The Jesuits desired to continue their priestly ministry to past pupils. He initiated the annual retreat for Old Boys, which attracted about 40 men each year. The Association flourished in these years.

He believed that Xavier was for boys of average ability. He stressed the importance of a general education rather than vocational, and encouraged the study of the classics - in which he held a BA from University College Dublin.

The environment of the school often reflects the quality of the education. At the Jesuit boarding schools, the religious spirit was always in tension with the Pubic School Spirit. In 1928 he told his audience that Xavierians were already filling leading positions in the Church, the professional, commercial and industrial life of Australia, he said he also considered it important that Xavier was a member of the Public Schools of Victoria.

Over the years Xavier had commanded respect in sport, but Edmund was not satisfied until Xavier was one of the front rank of the Pubic Schools in every aspect of school life, until the pre-eminence of the school was habitual and not exceptional. To achieve this he improved the sporting facilities and initiated promotion for more students. He raised the College fees to be equivalent to other Public Schools but also offered four full time scholarships each year.

Archbishop Mannix praised th work of the Jesuits, claiming that Xavier College could be well called the right arm of the Catholic Church in Melbourne and in Victoria. He also hoped that ex-students would be good Catholic leaders in the community. He valued the College so highly that at Edmund’s funeral he stated that the Rector of Xavier was “one of the most important positions, if not the most important that any priest in Melbourne could occupy”. That said, the Edmund and the Archbishop did not always agree on every matter. In 1927, the Archbishop was concerned at the non appearance of the College at the St Patrick’s Day celebrations. Edmund replied explaining that “not a few of the parents of the boys would strongly object to their children being forced to march”. The Archbishop did not pursue the question. The school cadets were the second matter on which they disagreed. Edmund had opposed all forms of military training for boys at school, because he disliked the idea of educating boys to destroy a fellow man. When they left school they could choose voluntary military training. The Archbishop was not sure that these pacific ideas were realistic.

How successful was the education that Jesuits were offering at Xavier? In 1925 Edmund emphasised the “deeper things in school life” such as the “spirit of piety and docility, of hard work, charity and self respect”. Further important signs of the success of Xavier were the success of the Old Boys either when they attended Newman College, or when they returned to school to renew contacts with former masters. Yet he reflected that even if they didn’t return, the work of the College would continue. This was one of the few expressions of great faith in the work of education made by Jesuits. Edmund indicated the Jesuit hope that their system would produce solid Catholic citizens, and provided some achieved this aim, then they were satisfied.

The wider community of Melbourne mourned Edmund’s early death. The Catholic people lost a spiritual leader of great wisdom, while many non-Catholics mourned the loss of a friendly and approachable colleague. he had been a quietly influential member of the Schools Board, the Council of Public Education ad the Headmasters’ Association. Colleges in these Associations respected him for his clear-headed thinking and the zeal with which he fostered the spirit of Public School Sport.

He was no innovator, nor did he give great educational leadership among the Public Schools of Victoria, but within Xavier College he built a new atmosphere, a strongly religious tone totally in keeping with Ignatian spirituality and Jesuit education. More than most Jesuit rectors, he was truly Catholic and thoroughly Ignatian in theory and practice. His greatness was his ability to communicate his spirit to others in an acceptable manner. The style of Xavier College during his time was a model for Jesuit schools of the time.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 6th Year No 4 1931
Obituary :
Fr Edmund Frost

Fr. Frost died at St. Benedict's private hospital, Malvern, (Melbourne) 17 June 1931. He had been ill for little more than a month. At first his disease was diagnosed as sarcoma, but later developments showed it to be Hodgkinson's disease a kind of infection of the blood.

On the eve of the Feast of the Sacred Heart they told him he was beyond human aid. and he heard the news with that calmness and serenity so characteristic no him. On the Feast itself he received the Last Sacraments. During the following days his strength failed rapidly, and on 17 June he died a wonderfully holy and happy death.
The very striking and unusual tribute paid to his memory on the day of the funeral shows in what high esteem he was held by all classes and creeds in Melbourne. The newspapers agree in saying that the crowd gathered round the catafalque was the largest seen in Melbourne on a like occasion, since 1917. when the obsequies of Dr Carr, the last Archbishop, were Celebrated. More than 4.000 people crowded into St. Patrick's Cathedral. At least 150 priests occupied the Sanctuary. It is scarcely necessary to say that our sterling friend Archbishop Mannix, presided. He was assisted by Dr McCarthy, Bishop of Sandhurst.
Still more striking was the large number of leading non-Catholics who came to pay their respects to the dead Jesuit. All the great Protestant Public Schools were represented. The Head Masters of Scotch College, Wesley College, Geelon Grammar school, were present. Melbourne Grammar School, Geelong College and others sent groups of masters and head boys to the obsequies. Fr Frost had been the Catholic representative on the Council of Education. and on the School Registration Board. The heads of both had their place in the Cathedral.
Of course, Xaverians. past and present, held the place of honours. The old Xaverians had, in relays, spent the previous night in prayer in the College Chapel before the remains were removed to the Cathedral. The senior prefects were the pall-bearers The entire school formed a guard of honour at the cemetery. They were joined by 170 boy s from St. Kevin's College, and 80 from bi. Patrick’s. St Vincent de Paul's Society, that Fr. Frost had made a great reality at the College, assisted in large numbers.
During the obsequies His Grace spoke in very touching terms of his dead friend. He said that Father Frost was in almost irreparable loss to the diocese. Not only was his death a loss to the Catholic body, but it was felt also by all with whom he had come in contact. He was every inch a man and a priest of God, true to his friends, with a wonderful gift of understanding. He was not merely a great Head Master and a great citizen, but he was a really spiritual man. The memorial chapel at Xavier had not yet been finished, but it would ever stand as a monument to the zeal, taste. and courage of Fr. Frost. He has left, continued His Grace, at monument in the hearts of all the boys with whom he came in contact. The old Xaverians will remember a brother. The clergy have lost an ornament, and I a dear and valued friend.
Dr. Littlejohn, the Presbyterian Head-Master of Scotch College, paid his tribute to Fr. Frost. The picture he draws of the man is so true that we shall give it in its entirety :
“The late Fr. Frost was above all a religious man. His religion meant more than anything else in the world. it was real to him.
But he was tolerant too. My last message from him - expressing regret that he could not see me, as he was unable to receive visitors, ended with a request for my prayers.
I considered him a great and a dear friend. In disposition he was a quiet kindly, genial gentleman. His cast of mind was serious, though there were gleams, too, of Irish wit. He would laugh heartily at my newest story from Aberdeen.
At meetings of the headmasters of the School Board, and the Council of Public Education, where we were colleagues. Fr, Frost made a place for himself as a sane, clear-headed thinker.
His inclination was slightly towards conservation “Hold fast to that which is good rather than some novel experiment”, seemed his maxim, Innovation for the sake of innovation without sound principle behind, he would leave well alone.
He did not speak much at our meetings, but what he did say was the outcome of sober thought, well considered, far seeing, and it was received with respect.
Fr. Frost fostered the spirit of school sport at its finest. He shared with his boys their enthusiasm for games. and he constantly impressed on them these two ideas : Not to be cast down in defeat; not to be overweening proud in success.
He never failed to acknowledge a message of congratulation on Xavier success in sport - nor to send one. His letters, worded with a kindly, old world courtesy, made one almost ashamed for winning. Glad you won, and glad it was you that beat us , was the note that ran through them.
l have been over the Xavier Memorial Chapel with Fr. Frost twice during its construction. The building of it was a matter very near to his heart. He contemplated with the greatest happiness the completion of this magnificent structure, now to be a memorial not only to the Fallen, but to himself”.
Mr Adamson, headmaster of Wesley College, said : I deeply regret the loss of so able a man. Associated with him for many years at meetings of headmasters, my first impression, which lasted when a friendship had sprung up between us. was of the entire reasonableness of the man. He was a splendid man to work with.
Mr Hansen, Director of Education, declared that a front rank educationist had been lost to Victoria.
An old Xaverian writes : Among the many notable men who had charge of Xavier College Fr. Frost was as regarded as the school's foremost headmaster. During his term the school made its greatest strides in studies, sport and in the number of scholars. This success is attributed to his qualities of leadership, which were shown in his dealings with both past and present scholars. He set himself out to keep in touch with boys after they left school, and continually sought to arrange gatherings of them at the school. The May vacation retreat, which large numbers of old boys now attend, was started by Fr. Frost. Another indication of his interest in old scholars was the number of marriages of old boys which he celebrated in the school chapel.
Another Old Xaverian : A great man has passed to his new and, a cultured Irish gentleman, a friend to all, a faithful priest of God. In all my long connection with Xavier there has been no one for whom 1 had a greater respect and affection than for Fr. Frost. He was a wise counselor and a faithful friend. He brought Xavier to the forefront of public schools, consolidated the old boys into a united body, fostered the public school spirit to the highest degree. His death is a national calamity.
Such was the estimate of Fr Frost formed by externs . What manner of ma was he in the community over which he presided? Possibly the first thing that strikes one is this - if ever there lived a man who was the very antithesis of “side”, of artificial and ill-fitting dignity, that man was Fr Frost. He was kindliness and simplicity itself.
One of those who lived under him was asked to give an appreciation of his Rector, and he answered “I consent gladly and at the same time sorrowfully. Gladly, because it is an opportunity to testify in public to the worth of one who was my Superior at Xavier’s, where I learned to know and love him. Sorrowfully, because the memory of him brings tears, and the reading of the testimonies to his life and character remind me of my loss. As a rector he ever dealt with me in the most kind manner possible. To see Christ in him was easy, because he lived Christ. Having said this there is nothing higher to say of him.
Nevertheless, lest my judgment be blinded by affection, it will be useful to hear what others who came in contact with him thought. The writer gives a number of the extracts already quoted in this notice, and continues Above all things he ever sought to see both sides of any question that was brought before him. In consequence his administration of justice was
evenhanded. The boys knew this well, and loved him for it. I hear there is great Justice for the boy at. Xavier’s, remarked a protestant lady. And she was right.
In conclusion I can but say with Melbournes great Archbishop : I too have lost a dear and valued friend.

Another member of his Community writes : Fr. Frost has left behind him the kindest and most beautiful memories every where... As Fr. Mannix put it so well : Some are gifted for dealing with men, others for dealing with religious Communities of women, others again for dealing with children but Fr. Frost was at home with them all.
His lost to the Community is of course great. He was a kind and holy Rector. and most considerate in every way. He taught me when I was a little boy at Clongowes. I knew him here (Xavier's) as Rector, and all the time I was on the continent (theologian) he sent me letters at regular intervals full of interesting news of Xavier, and almost invariably, a cheque for
Masses at Lisieux or Paray-Le-Monial, The Brothers miss him very much. He took recreation with them every Sunday , and stocked their recreation room with excellent pious books. He called it St. Alplsonsus' library. He joined in all our sports, played cricket during the season and tennis every Saturday. He was with us at our card parties, and ar all the little entertainments we have from time to time. Every morning before meditation he paid his visit to the Blessed Sacrament and then aa short visit to the shrine of our Lady in the hall. After breakfast there was another visit to Our Lady to get her blessing on the day's work. I feel very lonely alter him, but, please God, he is enjoying the reward of his holy and simple life. His funeral was certainly a fitting tribute to a holy an kind hearted man. Every morning at Mass he gave a talk to the boys on the saint of the day. The summary of his life is but too brief. He died in his 46th year. Fr. Frost was horn in Co. Clare (Ireland) 17 July 1884, educated at Presentation Brothers' College, Cork, and began his novitiate at Tullabeg 12 Nov. 1901, Two years rhetoric in the same place was followed by three 3 years philosophy at Stonyhurst, and five years at Clongowes as prefect and master. During philosophy he got his B. A. degree at the Royal University. Two more years teaching, this time at Mungret, brought him to the third year, which he made at Tullabeg. For a year and a half he was Minister at Tullabeg and was then transferred to Clongowes whose Minister had broken down health. In 1922 he set sail for Australia. He spent one year teaching at Xavier, and then became its Rector. His holy death was at Malvern (Melbourne) 17 June 1931. May he rest in peace.

Shaw, Francis M, 1881-1924, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/785
  • Person
  • 29 May 1881-14 January 1924

Born: 29 May 1881, Ennis, County Clare
Entered: 06 September 1902, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1915, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1921, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 14 January 1924, Dublin

Chaplain in the First World War.

Part of the Mungret College, Limerick community at the time of death.

by 1906 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1908 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1917 Military Chaplain : No 17 Casualty Clearing Station, France
by 1918 Military Chaplain : c/o Archbishop’s House, Wodehouse Road, Bombay, India
by 1919 Military Chaplain : 16th CCS, Mesopotamia, EF

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education was at Castleknock.

After his Novitiate he was sent to Jersey for Philosophy and then to Clongowes for a Regency of some years Teaching and Prefecting.
1912 He began Theology at Milltown.
1917 He was appointed Military Chaplain to No 17 Casualty Clearing Station, BEF, France. He was for some time later In India and Mesopotamia.
After the War ended he was sent to Mungret. he was attacked by some virulent growth and died after much suffering in hospital in Dublin 14 January 1924. He is buried in Mungret.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Electrical Engineer before entry

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