File 252 - Letters from Fr Daniel Clancy SJ to Fr Provincial concerning the Australian Mission

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Letters from Fr Daniel Clancy SJ to Fr Provincial concerning the Australian Mission


  • 12 October 1880 - 30 May 1887 (Creation)

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17 items

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(14 January 1836-06 September 1895)

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Born: 14 January 1836, Miltown Malbay, County Clare
Entered: 29 March 1861, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1873
Professed: 02 February 1877
Died: 06 September 1895, St Patrick’s College, Melbourne, Australia

by 1863 at Roehampton London (ANG) studying
by 1870 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1876 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
Early Australian Missioner 1877

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He worked hard in the HIB Colleges before going to Australia, and there he took up similar work.
He was Rector of St Aloysius, Sydney shortly after it opened.
The votes of Fellows made him Rector of St John’s within Sydney University, a job he maintained for some time.
He died at St Patrick’s, Melbourne 06 September 1895

Note from Thomas McEnroe Entry :
1877 He set sail for Melbourne with Daniel Clancy, Oliver Daly and James Kennedy

Note from Patrick Hughes Entry :
He was then sent to Drongen for Tertianship. along with Joseph Tuite and Daniel Clancy.

◆ 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 Milltown Park Dublin and after First Vows he did some further studies.

1865-1867 He was sent for Regency to Clongowes Wood College
1867-1874 He was sent to Leuven for Theology and made Tertianship at Drongen.
1874-1875 He was sent to St Stanislaus College Tullabeg as Minister
1877-1880 He was sent to Australia and initially to Xavier College, and then to St Aloysius College at St Kilda House in Sydney, becoming Rector there in 1880.
1884-1889 He was elected Rector of St John’s College, a position he held only for a few weeks He did not take up the position because the Fellows were not unanimous in electing him. So remained Rector of St Aloysius College, teaching, and at the same time a Mission Consultor, Bursar and Prefect of Discipline.
1890-1893 He was sent to Xavier College Kew
1893 He was sent to St Patrick’s College Melbourne as a Teacher and Spiritual Father until he died two years later of cancer.

His students at St Aloysius experienced him as a severe disciplinarian, even though his punishments were recognised as well deserved.

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A file of letters from Fr Daniel Clancy SJ to Fr Provincial concerning the Australian Mission. Includes a letter concerning the outlay on the primary school at Lavender Bay and remarks that the school could have been built for a lot less 'I think most of us here, if not all, feel that it was a gross mistake to put Fr Kennedy at the head of any mission as Superior...he is absolutely unfit - that he lacks not only judgement but knowledge and temper.' (28 February 1881, 12pp). Includes a letter referring to a site in Sydney he feels would be suitable for the Jesuit fathers to establish a school. Remarks that the house was lived in by the present Agent General Sir S. Samuel. Refers to the extravagance of the school at Lavender Bay. Remarks 'It is said...that the blunder at Lavender Bay is so foolish that the reputation of the Society here cannot be restored unless the Jesuits undertake some work in the city that will prove they are not incapable.' (16 July 1881, 10pp). Includes a letter referring again to Lavender Bay. Remarks 'A lawyer who knows all our affairs very accurately has told me this very month that we shall never be able to meet the liabilities on Lavender Bay and that the best and only thing to do is to part with that mission for this can be done.' Concludes in a postscript 'You will observe that the tenants lease for Auburn House (Saul Samuel's) expires the same time as our lease for St Kilda House. But the time to secure that is now most urgently - or never.' (5 August 1881, 8pp). Includes a letter asking for more Fathers to be sent out. Refers to rumours of a new mission being started in Invercargill, New Zealand. Remarks 'The fact is help is very urgently wanted without undertaking fresh work and unless help comes quickly and of the right kind it is better we should be all recalled in good time.' (25 September 1881, 6pp). Includes a letter containing a sketched plan of St Aloysius College. Describes the property (19 April 1885, 3pp).

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