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175 Name results for Leuven

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Archdekin, Richard, 1619-1693, Jesuit priest and scholar

  • IE IJA J/875
  • Person
  • 16 March 1619-31 August 1693

Born: 16 March 1619, County Kilkenny
Entered: 20 September 1642, Mechelen, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 28 March 1648, Louvain, Belgium
Final vows: 09 December 1657
Died: 31 August 1693, College of Antwerp, Belgium - Flanders Province (FLA)

Alias MacGiolla Cuddy

Son of Nicholas Archdekin and Anne Sherlog. Read Humanities in Ireland and Philosophy at Louvain
1649 in Tertianship at Mechelen
1650 Returned in Roman Cat age 34 having read 4 years of scholastic Theology
1671 Professor of Scripture at Antwerp (Louvain?) and was published - also taught Scripture, Humanities, Theology and Philosophy
Abbé Henegan says RIP 1690; Another account in suggests Ent 1649
Monument at Thomastown Kilkenny

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Son of Nicholas and Ann née Sherlock
Studied Humanities at Antwerp and Lille under the Jesuits before Ent, and four years Theology in the Society. He knew Latin, Irish, English and Flemish.
1650 Teaching Humanities (HIB Catalogue 1650 - ARSI)
1653 Arrived at Professed House Antwerp, 26/03/1653, and Taught Humanities for six years and was a Professor of Philosophy, Moral Theology and Sacred Scripture, chiefly at Louvain and Antwerp, where he died. (cf Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS; and for his writings de Backer “Biblioth. des Écrivains SJ”)
Writer; Professor of Theology and Sacred Scripture. (cf Foley’s Collectanea)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Nicholas and Anne neé Sherlock
He studied humanities in Ireland and Antwerp and on the completion of his philosophy studies at Louvain, entered the Society at Mechelen.
Having studied theology at Louvain he was Ordained priest there 28 March 1648.
Recalled to Ireland, he taught Humanities at Kilkenny until the fall of that city to the Cromwellian forces.
On his return to Belgium he continued to teach Humanities.
1657-1690 Professor of the ecclesiastical sciences :
1657-1665 Philosophy Antwerp, Sacred Scripture and Hebrew at Antwerp
1665-1674 Sacred Scripture, Hebrew and Moral Theology at Louvain
1674-1690 Prefect of ecclesiastical studies, Scripture and Moral Theology at Antwerp
1690-1693 On his retirement he continued to live at the College of Antwerp where he died 31 August, 1693.
The writings of Richard Archdekin were read in probably every theologate of Europe.
His most famous work was the “Praecipuae Controversiae Fidei” which went into many editions in his lifetime. The 1686 edition contains biographical notices of Blessed Oliver Plunket and Archbishop Peter Talbot.
Notable too amongst his works is his treatise on miracles composed with special reference to favours received through the veneration of relics of St. Francis Xavier which were kept at Mechelen. This book is said to be the first known to be printed in Irish and English conjunctively.

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online
Archdekin (Ardsdekin, MacGiolla Cuddy), Richard
by Terry Clavin

Archdekin (Ardsdekin, MacGiolla Cuddy), Richard (1619–93), Jesuit priest and scholar, was born 16 March 1619 in Kilkenny city, son of Nicholas Archdekin and his wife Ann (née Sherlock). After being educated at the classical school in Kilkenny, he travelled to Antwerp (1637) to study theology at the Jesuit college there before moving to Louvain (1640), where he studied philosophy. Already proficient in Irish, English, and Latin, he became fluent in Flemish. On 20 September 1642 he entered the Society of Jesus at Malines (Mechelen) before returning to Louvain (1644) to resume his study of philosophy. He was ordained a priest on 28 March 1648 and, after completing his tertianship, returned to Ireland in summer 1649 to join the Jesuit mission there. Presumably he would have been a member of the teaching staff of a college that the Jesuits intended to establish in Kilkenny, but these plans were dashed by the invasion of Ireland by a militantly anti-catholic English protestant army under the generalship of Oliver Cromwell (qv). Archdekin was soon obliged to flee to Galway, which held out until 1652, after which he managed to slip away and (after a period in hiding) eventually found a ship bound for the Continent. He landed in the Spanish Netherlands on 26 March 1653.

Thereafter he pursued a successful academic career on the Continent, being first appointed to teach humanities at Malines and Alost (Aalst). In 1657 he became professor of philosophy at the Jesuit college in Antwerp and continued as such until 1662, when he began teaching scripture and Hebrew. He moved (1665) to the Jesuit college at Louvain, where he taught scripture, Hebrew, and moral theology before serving as professor of scripture and moral theology at Antwerp from 1664 until his retirement in 1690.

He also wrote a number of works, and his first publication, A treatise of miracles (1667), was printed in both Irish and English. When writing in Irish he used the pseudonym MacGiolla Cuddy. In 1671 he published Vita et miraculorum sancti Patritii Hiberniae, which included a life of St Patrick (qv) and also elaborated on prophecies attributed to St Malachy (qv). The same year he published Praecipuae controversiae fidei, a practical guide for missionary priests in Ireland. It included material on theology, philosophy, the catholic rite, secular and ecclesiastical history, sermons, and religious instruction. In particular it incorporated many references to Irish affairs. The first edition of 1,000 copies was sold out within months and it went through eleven editions in his lifetime. The 1686 edition was retitled Theologia tripartite universa and expanded on the preexisting material to include lives of the martyred archbishop of Armagh, Oliver Plunkett (qv) and of Peter Talbot (qv), archbishop of Dublin. In 1700 an error was uncovered in his teaching on philosophical sin, and as a result the book was placed on the prohibited index. This error was corrected in subsequent editions. He died at Antwerp 31 August 1693 and was buried in the Jesuit graveyard there.

Webb; Crone; T. Wall, ‘Richard Archdekin's catechetical hour’, IER, no. 70 (Jan.–June 1948), 305–15; Boylan (1988 ed.); Dictionary of catholic biography (1962); ODNB

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Richard Archdekin 1618-1693
Richard Archdekin came of a distinguished Kilkenny family, being born in that city in 1618. He made his early studies at Antwerp and Lille, and finally entered the Society in 1642.

Form most of his life he lectured at Louvain and Antwerp in Philosophy, Moral Theology and Sacred Scripture. He was a voluminous writer. From his pen we have : “A Treatise on Miracles”, written in English and irish, the famous “Theologica Tripartita”, “The Life and Miracles of St Patrick”, “The Mirac les of St Francis Xavier”, and the most useful and influential of all his works, a translation of the Catechism of St Peter Canisius.

Hed died full of works and ripe in merit and age at Antwerp on August 31st 1693.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
ARCHDEACON, RICHARD, was born in Kilkenny in 1619. He was admitted into the Society of Jesus at Mechlin, at the age of 23, and in due time was enrolled among the professed Fathers of the Order. After teaching Humanities for six years, and Philosophy, Moral Divinity, and Scripture for a very long period, chiefly at Louvain and Antwerp, he died in the last mentioned city, about the year, 1690, according to Harris (p. 203, Writers of Ireland) We have from the pen of this Rev. Father:

  1. “A Treatise on Miracles”, written in English and Irish, 8vo. Louvain, 1667. In the Annual Letters of Ireland of 1673, mention is made of a book, quem de S. Xaverii miraculis edidit Anglice P. Richardus Archdekin .
  2. “Theologia Tripartita Universa”. 8vo. Louvain, 1671. During the Author s life this useful work was frequently reprinted.
  3. “Vitae et Miraculorum S. Patricii Epitome”. 8vo. Louvain, 1671. I am un able to describe the book : but a copy at the sale of Mr. Bradish s Library, in the summer of 1829, was deposed of by Jones, Trinity Street, Dublin, for eight Guineas.

Archer, James, 1550-1620, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/877
  • Person
  • 1550-19 February 1620

Born: 1550, Kilkenny
Entered: 25 May 1581, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Ordained: c. 1577 Louvain, Italy, - before Entry
Died: 19 February 1620, Irish College, Santiago de Compostela, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)

2 yrs Theology in Rome, concentrating on Moral;
In the Roman College 1584; at Pont-à-Mousson as Minister and student confessor, Campaniae Province (CAMP) 1586-7- moved to Nancy 1587 due to danger of war;
First Rector of Salamanca;
famous Missioner in Ireland during “Tyrone war”;
Bruxelles et Castrensis Mission in 1590;
at Salamanca in 1603;
At Bilbao - Castellanae Province (CAST) - in 1614 - Prefect of Irish Mission;
Irish College Salamanca in 1619 and then died in Santiago 15 February 1620.

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
First Rector of Salamanca ad great promoter of education; A Most celebrated man whose name was very dear to Irishmen, and with whom he possessed unbounded influence.
He was a famous Missioner in Ireland during the War of Tyrone
In 1617 he was in Castellanae Province (CAST).
Succeeded Fr Thomas White as rector of Salamanca 1592-1605
His name also appears incidentally in the State Papers, Public Record Office, London, 1592, 1594.
He is highly eulogised in a report of Irish Affairs addressed by Capt Hugh Mostian to Louis Mansoni, the Papal Nuncio for Ireland, towards the latter end of Queen Elizabeth’s reign. (Oliver’s “Collectanea” from Stonyhurst MSS. Oliver also refers to several of Archer’s letters as still extant)
1606 Archer was constituted the first Prefect of the Irish Mission in the National College, Rome (Irish Ecclesiastical Record April 1872, July 1874 and a biography September 1874)

Note from Bl Dominic Collins Entry
After First Vows he was sent to Ireland as a companion to James Archer, who was a Chaplain to the Spanish invading force sent by Philip III of Spain. He was taken prisoner and rejected the overtures to reject his faith he was hanged (at Cork or Youghal).

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
He had studied at Louvain and was Ordained some time before March 1577. Before he entered the Society he was already a Master of Arts. When he returned to Ireland in 1577, he remained for at least he next eighteen months. He was at Kilmallock, 21 August 1578, when he assisted the Franciscan, Father Conrad Rourke, the eve of his death “in odium fidei”
After First Vows, Archer was deputed to revise his studies at the Roman College and Pont-à-Mousson. At the latter place he served also as Minister of the community and the student-boarders. It would seem that his Superiors were grooming him for professorial duties - However...
1590 By May he was serving as a military chaplain at Brussels
1592 He was sent to Spain to take charge of the newly founded Irish College, Salamanaca.
1596 He returned to Ireland to raise funds there for Salamanca College but his contacts with the Irish chieftains won for him the repute of a political intriguer and the hatred of the administration at Dublin. There can be no doubt that his sympathies lay with the Old Irish whose cause he saw was bound up with the survival of the Catholic Church in the country. He seems to have met Hugh O'Neill about the time of the battle of the Yellow Ford and was later at the camp of the Earl of Desmond. The MacCarthy Mor stated that Archer, by letter, solicited him to rise in rebellion.
1600-1602 He left Ireland for Rome, 20 July, but returned with the fleet of Juan Del Aguila, 23 September 1601 and remained until July 1602. Before his return to Spain he reported to the General on the state of Ireland.
1602-1612 Returned to Spain he held various posts in the Irish College, Salamanca, but seems also to have spent much time questing for the support of the Irish students. For a time he was stationed at Bilbao to win the support of new benefactors of the Irish colleges of the Peninsula.
His later years were spent at Santiago where he died, 19 February 1620

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

Archer, James (1550–1620), Jesuit priest and administrator, was born at Kilkenny and belonged, it can be deduced, to a patrician family prominent in that city. To prepare for an ecclesiastical career he went (c.1564) to the Spanish Netherlands, to Louvain, a hotbed of the new militant catholic theology and a strong influence on attempts at extending the counter-reformation to England. On his return to Ireland (1577) he was considered by the English authorities there to be a danger to the Elizabethan church settlement. Undoubtedly he had some sympathy with principals of the Desmond rebellion.

In 1581 Archer entered the Society of Jesus in Rome, continuing his studies there before moving (1585) to Pont-à-Mousson in the duchy of Lorraine, where there was a small seminary for Irish and Scottish students. Showing talent mainly as a confessor and administrator, he was sent (1587) to minister to the 1,200 Irish, English, and Scottish soldiers in the so-called Irish regiment, whom their commander, Sir William Stanley (qv), had persuaded to forsake the English service for the Spanish. The activities of Stanley and his entourage were an aggravating circumstance in the Spanish threat to Elizabeth I's England. Archer was said to have been involved in an alleged plot to murder the queen.

At the close of 1592 he went to Spain. After visiting the royal court at Madrid, he settled in Salamanca, the seat of Spain's foremost university, and took over the administration of the Irish college being founded there. In 1596 he returned to Ireland to seek money for the college and to explore the possibility of re-establishing a Jesuit mission. He was obliged to lie low in the countryside and eventually to join Hugh O'Neill (qv), whose rebellion had been raging since 1593. On all sides he acquired a legendary reputation. Summoned to Rome (1600) to give an account of his mission, he acted also as an envoy of O'Neill. In 1601 he was back in Spain, involved in planning the Spanish military expedition to Ireland as well as settling differences among the Irish at Salamanca. Archer was a member of the force numbering 4,432 men that headed for Kinsale in September. For the defeat of the expedition he blamed the commander, Juan del Águila (qv). Archer left Ireland for Spain in July 1602; his views about the failure of the enterprise were heeded at first, but when Águila was exonerated and peace was made with England (1603) his career as a negotiator for Spanish aid for Irish rebels was over. Although his Jesuit superior would not allow him to return to Ireland, rumours abounded there of his presence.

The rest of his life was given, as ‘prefect of the mission’, to the Irish seminaries in the Iberian peninsula. Once again Archer had to deal with differences among the Irish catholics: the Old English were accused by the Old Irish of unfairness towards them, and the Jesuits were accused by other clerics of self-preferment. Archer's work in Spain bore fruit in 1610 when the Spanish authorities built a new college for the Irish in Salamanca, the Colegio de los Nobles Irlandeses, to which the king gave his support. Archer spent his last years at Santiago de Compostela. It was at the Irish college there that he died on 15 February 1620.

Although he was a man of no more than moderate ability and an indifferent scholar, Archer had qualities that served to make him an important figure in the Irish counter-reformation: he was phlegmatic and a good administrator; he had some influence at the Spanish court and, thanks to his experience in Ireland in the 1590s, the confidence of both of the rival groups of Irish Catholics – Old English and Old Irish. Only a few letters of James Archer survive, and there is no known portrait or even a verbal description.

Thomas J. Morrissey, James Archer of Kilkenny, an Elizabethan Jesuit (1979)

Note from Bl Dominic Collins Entry
In February 1601 he made his first religious profession and seven months later was appointed by his superiors to join the Irish mission, as Fr James Archer (qv) had specifically asked for him, perhaps due to his previous military experience and also his Spanish contacts. Archer had been described by Sir George Carew (qv), president of Munster, as ‘a chief stirrer of the coals of war’ (Morrissey, Studies, 318) and was being constantly sought out by government agents. Collins's association with him was to prove dangerous. He sailed with the Spanish expedition to Ireland on 3 September 1601, one of the commanders being Don Juan del Aguila, to whom Collins had surrendered Lapena in 1598. The flotilla with which he travelled arrived late at Castlehaven due to bad weather. After the defeat of the Irish and Spanish forces at Kinsale, Collins finally met Archer in February 1602 at the castle of Gortnacloghy, near Castlehaven

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/jesuitica-jumping-jesuits/

JESUITICA: Jumping Jesuits

Travellers in the Beara Peninsula will remember the Priest’s Leap, a mountain cliff in the townland of Cummeenshrule, where (around 1600 AD) a priest on horseback escaped from pursuing soldiers by a miraculous leap, which landed him on a rock near Bantry. Was the lepper a Jesuit? One tradition claims him as James Archer SJ; another as Blessed (Brother) Dominic Collins. In view of some dating difficulties, one can only say: pie creditur – a common phrase in Latin hagiographies, meaning “It is piously believed…”!

◆ James B Stephenson SJ The Irish Jesuits Vol 1I 1962

FATHER JAMES ARCHER SJ 1550-1625
Few men played a greater part than Father James Archer in the tremendous effort to smash the growing power of England in Ireland that marked the closing years. of the sixteenth century. Arriving in Ireland in 1596, he found the country already in the throes of war. The Tudors. had by this time realised that England could not be safe unless Ireland were subjugated. By the end of the sixteenth century, England had shaken off the last shackles of medieval restraints and had emerged as one or the strongest powers in Europe, The threats of Spain and the Pope had been warded off, and England was looked upon as the leader and head of Protestant Europe. It was at this time that she turned her face in real earnest towards Ireland.

The history of the Reformation in Ireland during the sixteenth century can be told briefly. The reform movements of Henry VIII and Edward, his son, were a complete failure. Neither of these kings had sufficient political control outside the Pale to enforce their authority, and even within the boundaries of the Pale the movement made little progress. During the reign of Mary the Catholic Church again flourished, though the confiscated monasteries were not restored. In 1558 Elizabeth succeeded to the throne of England,. Prior to her succession, she had never shown any remarkable zeal for religion. As queen, what she desired pre-eminently was peace and harmony. For the first years of her reign, her position in England was too insecure to permit her to embark on any intensive persecution of the Catholics, The clergy, however, were subject to a persecution that varied all through her reign; it was intensified or slackened according to the political circumstances of the moment. Up to 1578 religion did not play a vital part in opposing the anglicisation of Ireland. Gradually from that time on, it became more and more important, until finally in the reign of James I the Catholics, both Irish and Anglo-Irish, clung to their faith as the only part of the heritage that had been left. So too it was religion that at the beginning of the next century was to unite the two races, by inciting them both to oppose the alien creed. Later it was on the rock of her Faith, preserved and enlivened at this time, that the nationality of Ireland was founded.

Perhaps before we examine the work of Fr Archer, a word on the state of religion in Ireland during the sixteenth century may not be out of place. It is certain that it was not a very vital force in the lives of many of the people. They were Catholics More by custom than by conviction. Here is one account left by Dr Tanner, who had to leave the Society of Jesus owing to ill-health and who was later appointed Bishop of Cork: “He (Dr Tanner) is assured by grave men that during all this time not a hundred Irishmen in all Ireland have been infected with heresy, though not a few ... attend the profane rites of the heretics, and the demoralisation of the people is such that a pious Catholic is hardly to be found; and no wonder since the clergy are the most depraved or all. Moreover, there is so little instruction to be had in the Christian Faith that few can so much as repeat the Lord's Prayer, the Articles of the Faith, or the commandments, and still fewer understand them. Sermons are so uncommon that there are many that have never so much as heard one. The Sacraments are rarely administered. In fine so gross is the ignorance of the people that there are many who, passing all their lives in the grossest sin, have grown accustomed thereto”.

In general we may conclude that religion was dormant in Ireland at the end of the sixteenth century. The people indeed had the Faith and seemed eager for instructions and there is no evidence of anti clericalism as in England. On the contrary, the priests were generally loved and would always find a safe shelter among the people, who had seen so many of them give up their lives for the Faith. But unfortunately, many of the priests were not active. The morals of the people were often depraved. There was little scope for Catholic education. The monasteries for the most part had been dissolved. The external organisation of the Church was shattered, and the wars had increased the laxity and poverty of the people. But the light of Faith had been kept glowing by the zealous labours of the Friars and the heroic priests and bishops who had endured persecution and death to shield, their flocks. This then was the state of the country, political and religious, when in 1597 Fr James Archer landed in Waterford to inaugurate what was to become the first permanent mission of the Society of Jesus in Ireland.

James Archer was born in Kilkenny in 1550. He attended the school of the famous Dr Peter White or that town, where the young Archer seems to have been a distinguished scholar. Very little is known of his career for the next fifteen years. In 1577 he was at Louvain, but in the following year he was back again in Ireland. On the 25 May 1581 he entered the Society of Jesus in Rome, and the next we hear of him is that in 1592 he was at Pont-à-Mousson with Fathers Richard Fleming, Richard de la Field and Christopher Hollywood, all Irish Jesuits. In the same year he was sent to Spain to collaborate with other Irish Jesuits in the foundation of the famous Irish college at Salamanca, which was instituted for the training of secular priests for the home mission. He remained there until 1596, when he was sent back to Ireland with Fr Henry Fitzsimon to re-open the Jesuit mission there which had lapsed for ten years.

Almost immediately after his arrival in Ireland, Fr Archer went northward to meet Hugh O'Neill, who was already in rebellion against Elizabeth. Archer looked upon the '”Nine Years War” as a crusade against the heretic queen. Therefore, during the few years that he was in Ireland, he strove to the utmost of his powers to unite the Irish under the leadership of Tyrone and to induce the Spaniards to send aid, His influence with the Irish chief's during these years was of paramount importance. He was looked upon by the English as one of their most dangerous enemies, and they laid several traps to ensnare him. If we were to rely on official contemporary documents alone, we should imagine that Archer was a traitorous intriguer and an enemy to all stability and good government. From other sources we can see that he was, first and foremost, a zealous missionary for the Faith.

In his first letter to his General in Rome, written on 10 August 1598, he gives an account of the precarious life he was leading even at this early stage. “The Government”, he says “hates me very much, hunts me very often in frequent raids, and has set a price on my head. This forces me to live in the woods and in hiding-places. I cannot even return to Spain, as merchants are afraid to receive me into their vessels, for they know well that there are spies in every port on the look-out for me”. Then he goes on to describe his missionary work: “I have already heard many thousand confessions, and have instructed an uncultivated and rude people. I brought back some to the Church and reconciled a noble person and his wife, and thus put a stop to dangerous dissentions which existed among members of both families who were leading men in the land, I administered the Sacraments in the camp, and it is marvellous to see the crowds that cone from the surrounding districts to hear Mass and go to Confession”.

In the beginning of the year 1598, the informer William Paule notified Lord Justice Loftus of the activities of Archer. He said that Jesuit lurked sometimes in Munster with Lord Roche and sometimes in Tipperary with Lord Mountgarrett. Paule urged Loftus to induce these Lords to betray Archer. Alternatively he suggested that the Protestant Bishop of Kilkenny should be ordered to capture him when he visited his friends in that town. Warning Loftus that Archer was wary, Paule informed him that the priest knew that his enemies were searching for him. Paule further suggested that he should have no scruple in killing Archer if he resisted arrest. Even at this early date, Fr Archer had attained to a position of outstanding influence with the Irish chieftains. He had already been universally accepted by them and an able adviser and true friend and had won the esteem and affection of the Irish people. He was equally hated and feared by their enemies.

In October 1598, Archer was mentioned in a despatch as “the chief stirrer of these coals (i.e., conspiracies) and promises to many the coming of forces from Spain”. He certainly did not spare himself in his effort to unite the Irish chiefs in their struggle against England, the common foe. In November 1598, he succeeded in inducing the Baron of Cahir to join the rebellion against Elizabeth. He hoped that by Easter 1599 “we, and such as be of our Catholic confederacy, shall be masters of all the cities, towns and forts in Ireland”. His reasons for the war throw a flood of light on his attitude to politics, and afford a convincing refutation of those who doubted his motives. They were first to restore the Catholic Church to its former position in Ireland; second, to repair the injuries done by the English to the Catholic nobility and gentry of Ireland; and finally to place a Catholic Prince on the throne of Ireland. Did Archer hope to set up Hugh O'Neill as High King of all Ireland or did he intend to make Ireland a vassal state of Spain? We do not know. The concepts of nationality, and a national state were only being moulded in the minds of men at this very time. It is even doubtful whether men like James Fitzmaurice or even Hugh O'Neill himself conceived it. Nationality in Ireland takes its origin from the religious persecutions of the seventeenth century; yet undoubtedly there existed in the sixteenth century some tendency towards local patriotism, especially as opposed to English tyranny. It is difficult to state definitely the motives and desires that agitated the mind of Archer during these years. One thing is certain that he considered freedom from English rule as essential to the spiritual welfare of Ireland.

In December 1598, Archer and his constant companion Bishop Creagh were accused of inciting the whole province of Munster to rebel. So great was his influence that his name had already come to the notice of Elizabeth, who charged him with “raising her subjects to rebellion”. Soon afterwards Elizabeth was again informed that the Irish priests, especially Archer “the Pope's Legate”, had assured the lords and chieftains who supported the queen or who remained neutral that after the war they would receive no better treatment from the English than the rebels. In this way they hoped to alienate her subjects from their allegiance. Rewards were offered for the capture of Archer, dead or alive. O'Neill's crushing victory at the Yellow Ford on the 15 August 1598 had shaken the loyalty of many supporters of the English. Archer's influence was more pernicious than ever. He was constantly on the move, visiting now one chieftain, now another. Several attempts were made to capture him, but all miscarried. Soon after his arrival in Ireland he had been arrested. He had managed to escape however and had determined never again to fall into the hands of his enemies. He can easily imagine the precarious position in which he was placed by the constant watch of spies, especially in areas where the Irish chieftains were not openly hostile to the Crown. But, through the goodwill and ever-watchful care of the Irish people, he escaped unscathed - though often at the last moment. His capture was looked upon by the Government as vitally important, his life being deemed of greater value to the Irish than those of the chieftains themselves. In 1600, in a report of Captain Hugh Mostian who had been won over by Archer from the English side, we read that “Archer by his sole authority as a private religious brought more comfort to the Irish than a great force of soldiers could do, and that the voice of the people gave him the title of Legate, At his nod the hearts of men are united and held together not only in the territory of Berehaven and all Munster, but in the greater part of the Kingdom ...”

In 1600 occurred a famous incident - the capture of the Earl of Ormonde by Owny O'More. The circumstances connected with the plot are fully described in the Calendar of Carew MSS. and elsewhere. Fr Archer happened to be staying with O'More when the latter captured Ormonde. There is no evidence to prove the charge that he was the instigator of the act. Naturally enough he was blamed by the English for having contrived the treachery and for refusing to liberate the Earl; although, according to them, some other Jesuits desired his release. He was also described as Ormande's “bed-fellow” and was said to have tried to convert him, which seems to be true. Several years later Ormonde was converted by two Irish Jesuits, Frs O'Kearney and Wale.

Early in 1600 Archer was summoned to Rome to give an account of the Irish Jesuit mission. It is strange that he should have been called away at such a critical juncture in the history of Ireland. Possibly the General in Rome did not fully realise what was at stake at the moment, or perhaps he night have thought that the final victory had already been won by the Irish. In a letter to the General, written by the Superior of the Mission, Fr Richard de la Field, an extremely cautious and conservative man, we read of Archer: “He has been a source of light and help in our work here. He has always lived with these Irish lords who are endeavouring to promote the interests of religion, and in consequence he is the object of an intense hatred of the Queen's officials and of the army. His presence here at the same time is very necessary for the advancement of the Catholic Faith in these calamitous times. It is important for us that he should be sent back as soon as possible. This letter is very valuable as coming from one who, at this time, was himself hesitating as to what side he should support in the conflict. It rightly stresses the spiritual nature of Archer's work, for it was that which predominated in all his other activity.

Of Archer's visit to Rome we know nothing. He was back again in Ireland in a few months, as his spies obligingly informed us. It was falsely reported to Cecil that Archer was returning from Rome armed with a Bull of Excommunication against all those who supported Elizabeth in the war. A few months later Cecil was again informed that Archer had landed in Ireland and was inciting the people to revolt. On his return he was again almost captured; but, as often before, he managed to escape his pursuers, Sir George Carew reported that Archer's arrival foreshadowed the advent of a Spanish fleet and the renewal of the war in Ireland. From an account given by his confrère, Brother Dominic Collins SJ, we learn that Archer actually did return to Ireland with Spanish help. His influence with the Irish soldiers was again evinced when, on the 29 May 1602, Carew informed Cecil that but for Archer many of them would have returned to their homes after the defeat at Kinsale or would have gone over to the side of the English. “Every day”', says Carew, “he devises letters and intelligences out of Spain, assuring them of succour, and once a week confirms new leagues and seals them with the Sacrament”. In another letter written by Carew we find the following amusing passage: “If Archer have the art of conjuring, I think he hath not been idle; but ere long I hope to conjure him. The country of Beare is full of witches; between them and Archer I do believe the devil hath been raised to serve their turn”. Even in defeat the English feared him. They seemed to have believed that he possessed superhuman powers, that he could walk on the sea and fly through the air. His name should have been not Archer but “Archdevil!” One can readily imagine the fate that awaited Archer, had he been captured. Shortly before this time he “was very near taken by a draught laid by the Lord Lieutenant, but happily escaped”.

In a report of Robert Atkinson, an informer and pervert, we got another account of Archer's activities. He says that he met Archer in Ireland when the latter was “chief commander of the Irish troops, horse and foot”. He also states that Archer commanded for his own guard as many men as he pleased, especially for “any bloody actions to be done upon the English Nation”. There is no evidence to show that Archer ever took part with the Irish soldiers in the actual fighting. Atkinson further states that Archer was commonly called the Pope's Legate and was Archprelate over all the clergy of the provinces of Munster, Leinster and the territory of the O'Neills. By others, he says, he was called Tyrone's Confessor, just as formerly he had been Confessor to the Archduke of Austria. For the rest we shall let Atkinson speak for himself: “Of all the priests that ever were, he is held for the most bloody and treacherous traitor, sure unto none in friendship that will not put his decrees in action by warrant of his Apostolic authority, as he calleth it, from time to time renewed by Bulls from Rome. He is grown to be so absolute that he holds the greatest Lords in such awe that none dare gainsay him”.

Even at the eleventh hour Archer's hopes did not give way. On the 14 June 1602 he was again supplicating for Spanish aid. For the next few weeks he remained with the Irish soldiers at Dunboy. Finally, on July 6th he left Ireland to induce the Spanish King to send another fleet to help a broken cause. He was more fortunate than his companion, Br Dominic Collins SJ, who was captured by the English and hanged in Cork on the 31 October 1602, being the third Jesuit to die for the faith in Ireland.

Fr Archer never again returned to Ireland. His life on the Continent we shall only review briefly. On the 6 May 1504 the General of the Jesuits appointed him Prefect of the Irish Mission in Spain. This appointment is clear proof that his Superiors held him in the highest esteem. They paid little attention to the lying reports that had been spread over England and Ireland in an effort, to blacken the reputation of one who was both a zealous priest and a great Irishman. In 1608, six years after his departure from Ireland, his name was still feared by the English. At this time he was accused of making preparations for another rebellion in Ireland. Chichester issued an order that spies be placed in various parts of the country to inform him of the arrival of Archer.

During all this time, Fr Archer was actively engaged in Spain as Prefect of the Irish Colleges. These Colleges were founded by Irish Jesuits. at Salamanca, Lisbon, Santiago and Seville for the training of Irish secular priests. In 1617 he was the oldest Irish Jesuit alive, being seventy-two years of age. He was still Superior of the Mission in Spain. The date of his death is uncertain, but it occurred before 1626. Thus ended the career of one of the most remarkable Jesuits who laboured on the Irish Mission during these years.

If we are to assess the value of Archer's work in Ireland or the magnitude of the task he set before himself, we must not leave out of account the circumstances in which he lived. Although Archer's aim was first and foremost spiritual, he saw clearly that political independence of England was utterly essential to the religious welfare of Ireland. The idea of toleration was not yet born in Europe.
Neither Catholic nor Protestant was ready to brook the existence of the other. Even in Ireland the word “Counter-Reformation” connoted not only a spiritual movement within and without the Catholic Church, but also an effort to compel the return of erring souls by force of arms. Moreover the political and religious state of Ireland itself must also be taken into account. For almost a century the country has been a prey to disunion and internal strife. Religion too was not a vital force in the lives of the people, Had the persecution been as severe as it had been in England, or in other words, had political circumstances been favourable, Ireland might have succumbed to the new doctrines, All these facts were well known to Fr Archer when he arrived in Ireland in 1596. Thus we can understand why he strove to unite the country under O'Neill and to procure aid from Spain and the Pope.

Before concluding this article, it might not be out of place to discuss briefly how far Fr Archer influenced the wars of O'Neill, and, especially, the extent to which he influenced the Great Earl himself. One thing is certain, that Fr Archer was regarded by the English authorities as O'Neill's ambassador and representative not only at all the courts of the local Irish chieftains but in Spain and Rome. It is equally certain that he acted as intermediary between the Irish and Spanish several times, and even for years after the Irish collapse at Kinsale the English feared that he would again organise another Spanish expedition. Several years after that fatal day, the authorities had spies placed in all the Irish ports on the watch for Archer's return. Indeed many false alarms were given, and at one time the English actually believed that he had landed in Ireland. These precautions would not have been taken if the Government had not already experienced the powerful, stay that Fr Archer had over the people. How far were their fears justified? It is very probable that Hugh O'Neill did not realise what was at stake when he first launched his rebellion. In fact it seems that he would never have revolted and there been any alternative, What was he fighting for? An Irish Ireland, or a Catholic Ireland, or local independence? The problem has not yet been solved. But I think it is true to say that, whatever may have been his motive in starting the war, he never fully realised all that that war involved. Probably even he did not foresee that the struggle would take on a national aspect before its close; and it is far less likely that he realised that it would become part of a European campaign and would be looked upon by many nations on the Continent as just another element of the Catholic Counter Reformation. Moreover, if Hugh O'Neill did not realize all this, he would not have been able to combine all these forces in a vast movement against the common enemy. The problem could almost be stated thus: Was O'Neill the unconscious leader of a movement that was indeed begun by him, but whose consequences and ramifications he had not foreseen and perhaps did not even realise up to the last?

This question is difficult to answer. But I think some light is thrown on it by glancing at the part played by Fr Archer in these crucial years. Immediately after his arrival in Ireland, Fr Archer went direct to O'Neill, as we have seen. Coming from Spain, where he was well-known, he was suspected, probably rightly, of bringing a message from the Spanish Court. Soon after this he visited all the Irish chieftains, including O'Donnell, O'Sullivan Beare, Owny O'More, the Earl of Desmond, Florence MacCarthy, James Fitzthomas (who claimed to be the Earl of Desmond), Lords Barry, Roche and Mountgarrett, as well as the Mayors of the southern towns - including Cork, Waterford and Kinsale. The mention of these three towns is significant. They are on the coast nearest Spain. Why did Archer visit these chieftains? The answer is obvious. From the outset, he regarded the struggle as a Catholic crusade against England. Therefore his policy was to unite all the Irish under O’Neill and, if possible, secure help from Spain and Rome. His aim and purpose, as well as the means to achieve the end, were clear and decisive - unlike those of Hugh O'Neill. And it is well to remember here that O'Neill's environment, even if we allow for a period spent in England, was mainly the local life and tradition of a petty chieftain of Ireland with all the narrowness that it entailed. While Archer's background was not only Irish tradition modified by Anglo-Norman ancestry, but also an international education the best that Europe could offer, an almost first-hand realisation of what the Reformation meant to Europe, a partiality for things Spanish with a natural bias against England, and finally a full comprehension of the danger to the Catholic religion in Ireland in an English domination there. Unfortunately we have little reliable evidence to guide us. But from the information we have I think we can safely affirm that Fr Archer was responsible, at least partially, for the change of outlook that is so marked a feature in the development of O'Neill's character as the years went by. It is interesting to note that, in a report sent by the Bishops of Dublin and Meath to the King in June 1603, much of what I have said is corroborated. Having stated that O'Neill had revolted to defend his rights and privileges, they go on to assert that the Jesuits and other priests afterwards induced him to fight for the sake of the Catholic religion and to secure the aid of the Pope and King of Spain. In many other places in the official documents the Jesuits are blamed for spreading the revolt. We know now that, of the Jesuits of the time, only Fr Archer exerted any direct political influence on a wide scale. To him, therefore, we largely attribute the change that took place. Thus, as the English realised only too well, “to have Archer taken were a great service to both the realms (England and Ireland), he being a capital instrument for Spain and the poison of Ireland”.

Hated by the English, Fr Archer won the hearts of the Irish, both rich and poor. In all the references to him there is not one which in any way tarnishes his memory, except those that come from the hands of his political enemies. Had the Irish been victorious at Kinsale, James Archer would probably have been one of the most influential men in the country. But after the defeat of 1601, his position in Ireland was even more invidious than that of O'Neill's himself. The Great Earl could adapt himself to the new conditions and try to begin life all over again, but for Archer there were no alternatives but death or exile. He had been looked upon by the English as the symbol of the rebellion in Ireland, and in his person he crystallised the hopes and aspirations of the majority of the Irish people. He stands forth as one of the foremost champions of his time of the Catholic religion in Ireland. By the English he was believed to be the source of all the discontent in the country. He was the emissary of the King of Spain, the Pope's ambassador and a member of the Society of Jesus. For him there could be no forgiveness.

James Corboy SJ

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father James Archer SJ 1550-1626
Fr James Archer was known to the English as the Archdevil. So active was he o behalf of the Irish, and so adept at evading capture, that magical powers were attributed to him. He is the only Jesuit of those days of whom we have a personal description, due to the interest of his enemies in him. We read in the report of the spy that “Archer, the traitor, was small of stature and black of complexion, that his hair was spotted grey, that he had a white doublet, and that the rest of his apparels was of some colour suitable for disguise”. Indeed, we may say that we have a photograph of him for an engraving of him may be found in “The History of British Costume” : “He had black mantle, and the high-crowned hat of the times. He appeard in straight trouse”.

Born of one of the leading families of Kilkenny in 1550, Fr Archer was one of the most remarkable Jesuits who laboured on the Irish Mission. What Henry Fitzsimon was to the Pale, James Archer was to the native Irish. By his clear grasp of the political and religious situation, his tireless efforts to unite the country against the sworn enemy of her faith and culture and to enlist in her cause the support of Spain, Fr Archer deserves to be ranked with Hugh O’Neill and Red Hugh o’Donnell as one if the leading champions of national independence and of the Catholic religion in the Ireland of his day.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
ARCHER, JAMES. In p. 301, History of British Costume (Library of Entertaining knowledge), is a delineation of O’More, an Irish Chieftain, and Archer, a Jesuit retained by him, both copied from a map of the taking of the Earl of Ormond in 1600. The Rev. Father is dressed in a black mantle, and wears the high crowned hat of the time. I read in a Report or Memorial of Irish Aflairs, addressed by Captain Hugh Mostian to Lewis Mansoni, the Papal Nuncio for Ireland, towards the latter end of Q Elizabeth s reign, “Unus Pater Archerus major fuit illis (Hibernis) consolatio, quam potuit esse magnet militum copia. Testis sum illius praesentiam tantum profuisse, ut vix aliud tantum : ad ipsius enim Nutum uniuntur et tenentur, corda hominum non solum in teritorio Beerhaven et Provincifc Australis : sed et in majori parte totius Regni.” “Father Archer alone was a greater comfort to his Irish countrymen than even a considerable reinforcement of troops. I am a witness, that his presence was almost more serviceable to the cause than anything else : for at his nod the hearts of men were united and bound together, not only in the district of Beerhaven and Munster, but in the greater part of the whole kingdom”
A few of F. Archer s letters have been fortunately preserved. The first is dated from the Camp, 10th of August, 1598. He states the difficulty of all Epistolary communication the intense anxiety and diligence of the Government to apprehend him; insomuch, that he was obliged to live generally in the woods and secret places, “ita ut in sylvis et latebris ut plurimum degam”. Still he never ceased from exercising the functions of his ministry - he had received two thousand general Confessions - he had instructed and confirmed many in the Faith, and reconciled several to the Catholic Church - that there was every prospect of an abundant harvest of souls, if he had some fellow-labourers; and that the gentry in the North and South parts of the island were most desirous of a supply. It seems that he had been ordered to Ireland to procure assistance for the Irish Seminary at Salamanca, “in subsidium Seminarii Hybernorum”, and that he had succeeded in sending over several youths with funds for their education. In conclusion he says that he was intending to proceed by the first opportunity to Spain from the North of Ireland. Iter in Hispaniam cogito prima occasione ex Septentrionali parte. NB : I find by a letter of F. Richard Field, dated Dublin, 20th of July, 1600, that he as Superior of the Irish Mission, had made F. J. Archer the actual bearer of that very letter to Rome. He recommends to him Mr. Robert Lalour, qui se socium itineris adjunxit Patri Jacobo (Archer.)
The second letter is dated, Compostella, 26th of February, 1606. It proves his active industry in procuring donations for the purpose of educating his countrymen, as also his zeal for the conversion of souls. He had just reconciled to God and his Church three English merchants.
The third letter to F. George Duras, the Assistant for Germany, is dated Madrid, 4th of August, 1607. He was then living at Court, “Ego in aula versor”, and had been successful in collecting Subscriptions.
The fourth letter is to F. Duras, from Madrid, 29th September, 1607. and is only subscribed by F. Archer, who, from illness, “prae dolore pectoris”, was obliged to employ a Secretary. He recommends the erection of an Irish Novitiate in Belgium. After treating of the business of the Irish Mission, he mentions “the conversion of three Scotchmen at Madrid : one was so desperate a Puritan, as often to declare that not all the Doctors of the World should ever withdraw him from his sect and opinion. Truth, however, had conquered : from a lion he became a lamb, and has chosen the life of a Capuchin Friars. I have others in hand in the suit of the English Ambassador, whom I will endeavour to reform”. Further particulars of this Rev. Father I have not been able to collect.

Bannon, John P, 1829-1913, Jesuit priest and confederate chaplain

  • IE IJA J/40
  • Person
  • 29 December 1829-14 July 1913

Born: 29 December 1829, Roosky, County Roscommon
Entered: 09 January 1865, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 16 June 1853 - pre Entry
Final vows: 02 February 1876
Died: 14 July 1913, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

2nd year Novitiate at Leuven, Belgium (BELG)
Chaplain in American Civil War

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Born in Roosky, but his mother was only visiting from Dublin at the time.

On the evening of his death the Telegraphy published an article on him headed “A Famous Irish Jesuit - Chaplain in American War” :
“The Community of the Jesuit Fathers in Gardiner St have lost within a comparatively short time some of their best known and most distinguished members. They had to deplore the deaths of Nicholas Walsh, John Naughton, John Hughes and Matthew Russell, four men of great eminence and distinction, each in his own sphere, who added luster to their Order, and whose services to the Church and their country in their varied lines of apostolic activity cannot son be forgotten. And now another name as illustrious is added to the list. The Rev John Bannon, after two years of inactivity, of sufferings patiently borne, passed away in the early hours of this morning. His death had not been unexpected, but his calm endurance and powerful vitality sustained him to the end, retaining his consciousness and interest in life up till a few hours before he passes away.
Father Bannon was a man of no ordinary gifts. He was a personality of massive character, with a keen intellect, and a mind well stored from his world-wide experience and extensive reading in Theology and literature of the day. Add to this a commanding presence, which compelled reverence and admiration, especially over those over whom his influence was more immediately felt, and the possession of a voice of peculiar sweetness and power, and he stood out as a man fully equipped as a pulpit orator of the very first rank, with a force and charm rarely equalled. He had a vast experience of life, garnered in many lands. Connected by family ties with Westmeath (he was a cousin of Bishop Higgins of Ballarat), his early years were passed in Dublin, where in due time he passed on to Maynooth, where after a distinguished course, He was ordained Priest by Cardinal Cullen in 1853, and he used to recount with pride that he was the first Priest ordained by that eminent churchman. After his Ordination, he came under the influence of Bishop Kenrick of St Louis (from Dublin), to whom he volunteered for work in America.
During the twelve years before the Civil War he led the active and full life of a parochial missionary in St Louis, wit a zeal and energy that are not yet forgotten. The stress of events caused him to cast his lot with the Southern Army, to whose memory he was ever loyal and true, and as Chaplain to the Confederates he went through all the hardships and sacrifices of the campaign, saw all its phases, faced all its dangers, until its final stages ended in peace.
The vicissitudes of life led him back to Europe, where in 1864, on his return from a visit to Rome, he joined the Jesuit Order as a novice in Milltown 09 January 1865, being 35 years of age, and in the full flush of his power and usefulness. After his Noviceship he was sent to Louvain for further studies, and returning to Ireland he was appointed to the Missionary Staff. Few Priests were better known than he was during the years when, as companion of Robert Haly and William Fortescue, his apostolic labours had for their field, almost every diocese in Ireland. After years of arduous toil in the missionary field, many positions of trust in the Order were committed by his Superiors to him in Belvedere, Tullabeg, UCD and at length he was appointed Superior of Gardiner St in 1884. Here for upwards of thirty years he laboured with an ardour and energy characteristic of his powerful will and kindly heart. During all these years his work of predilection was the formation and direction of his great Sodality for Commercial Young Men. To this work he devoted a zeal and energy which were only equalled by the devotedness and affection of those for whom he so unselfishly laboured. Many will have cause to regret in his loss a true friend, a generous benefactor, a wise and comforting adviser. But to his brothers in religion, to those who knew him in the intimacy of his daily life, his memory will remain as that of a man of deeply religious feeling, of profound humility and simplicity of character, and, added to great strength of will, a heart as tender as a mother’s.”

Note from Edward Kelly Entry :
He was ill for a very short time, and died peacefully and happily at Gardiner St. The Minister Father Bannon and Father Joe McDonnell were present at his death.

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

Bannon, John (1829–1913), catholic priest and Confederate chaplain, was born 29 December 1829 at Rooskey, Co. Roscommon, son of James Bannon, a Dublin grain dealer, and his wife, Fanny (née O'Farrell). Bannon had a brother and at least one sister. He was educated locally in Dublin, at Castleknock College (1845–6), and at St Patrick's College, Maynooth (minor seminary, 1846–50; theology course, 1850–53). He was ordained to the priesthood on 16 June 1853; some months later he received permission to transfer to the archdiocese of St Louis, Missouri.

Bannon arrived at St Louis early in 1855; after serving as assistant pastor at the cathedral for some months he became assistant pastor of the church of the Immaculate Conception, and in January 1857 pastor. He appears to have been recognised as a man of ability, for in September 1858 Archbishop Francis Patrick Kenrick (qv) made him secretary to the Second Provincial Council of St Louis (a meeting of the bishops of the American midwest), and the following November appointed him pastor of St John's parish in the west end of St Louis, with a commission to build a large new church and auxiliary bishop's residence. Bannon proved an effective pastor and fund-raiser; the church was largely complete by March 1861. He also became chaplain to a Missouri state militia company.

Missouri was a slave-holding state, and as the southern states threatened to secede from late 1860 tension developed between supporters and opponents of secession. In May 1860 the St Louis militia units (which had been mustered in camp by the pro-southern governor) were surrounded and forced to surrender to Federal troops supported by union volunteers. Father Bannon may have been among the prisoners (who were subsequently released on parole). During the fighting between Confederate and Federal forces in autumn 1861, many of the disbanded militia made their way south to join the Confederate army. On 15 December 1861 Bannon joined them (without the permission of Archbishop Kenrick, who maintained strict neutrality); Bannon had earlier expressed Confederate views from the pulpit, which placed him in danger of arrest. Bannon's admirers tend to emphasise his pastoral concern for his militiamen and his abandonment of bright chances of promotion in St Louis. In his writings and sermons he presented the Confederacy as defenders of Christian–agrarian civilisation against an aggressive, materialistic North.

Bannon reached the Confederate army near Springfield, Missouri, on 23 January 1862. He was attached to the Missouri light artillery but served as a chaplain-at-large to catholic soldiers; since he was not a regimental chaplain he did not receive official recognition (or a salary) until 12 February 1863, when his appointment by the Confederate war department was backdated to 30 January 1862. He kept a diary of his experiences as a chaplain, which he gave to an American historian in 1907; it is now in the University of South Carolina archives and formed the basis of Philip Tucker's The Confederacy's fighting chaplain (1992). He also wrote ‘Experiences of a Confederate chaplain’ (published in Letters and Notices of the English Jesuit Province, Oct. 1867, 202–6).

Bannon was present at the battle of Elkhorn Tavern, Missouri (7–8 March 1862), and accompanied his unit through the fighting around the strategic rail depot of Corinth in northern Mississippi in 1862–3 and on its posting to Vicksburg, the last Confederate stronghold on the Mississippi river, in March 1863. Broad-shouldered and standing over six feet tall, Bannon was a conspicuous figure on the battlefield and many sources testify to his zeal and physical courage in performing his religious duties during the fighting. (He also served as an artilleryman at moments of crisis.) He remained at Vicksburg throughout the siege until the fortress surrendered on 4 July 1863 and its occupants were taken prisoner. After his release on 4 August Bannon went to Richmond, where on 30 August he was asked by Jefferson Davis and the Confederate secretary of state, Judah Benjamin, to undertake a mission to Ireland to discourage recruitment for the Federal forces.

Bannon arrived in Ireland in November 1864. He wrote to the Nation under the pen name ‘Sacerdos’, supplied John Martin (qv) with material for a series of pro-southern letters, and circulated to parish priests and intending emigrants documents defending the southern cause and quoting pro-Confederate statements by prominent nationalists. In February and March 1864 he toured Ireland giving political lectures. His reports to Benjamin (preserved in the Pickett papers, Library of Congress) claim considerable success in discouraging emigration. The Confederate congress voted him its thanks.

In June 1864 Bannon accompanied Bishop Patrick Lynch (qv) of Charleston on a visit to Rome seeking papal diplomatic recognition. By the time his mission was completed it was clear that the Confederacy faced defeat, and neither the civil nor ecclesiastical authorities in St Louis were likely to look favourably on Bannon. He therefore undertook the spiritual exercises of St Ignatius Loyola (in a thirty-day retreat) and at their conclusion successfully petitioned for admission into the Irish province of the Jesuit order. He spent a year in the Jesuit novitiate at Milltown Park, Dublin (1865–6), and studied dogmatic and pastoral theology at Louvain (1866–7). In 1867–70 he travelled Ireland as part of the Jesuit team of missionary preachers. Thereafter he founded several sodalities in Dublin. The best-known of these was the Young Businessmen's Sodality, to which he remained attached until 1911; he may have been the model for the preacher Father Purdom in the story ‘Grace’ by James Joyce (qv). Bannon was regarded as a particularly eloquent preacher and continued to travel widely within Ireland, holding retreats and giving sermons on special occasions. He served as minister at Tullabeg College in 1880–81 and at the UCD residence in 1882–3, but he proved to lack administrative ability. He may have been the John Bannon who wrote a short life of John Mitchel (qv) published in 1882.

Bannon was superior of the Jesuit community in Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin (1883–9), where he spent the remainder of his life. He never returned to St Louis but continued to correspond with, and receive visits from, old military acquaintances and southern historians. In November 1910 he suffered a slight stroke, which left him partially paralysed. He died 14 July 1913 at the Jesuit residence in Upper Gardiner Street and was buried in the Jesuit plot at Glasnevin cemetery.

‘Experiences of a Confederate chaplain’, Letters and Notices of the English Jesuit Province (Oct. 1867), 202–6; Philip Tucker, The Confederacy's fighting chaplain (1992); William Barnaby Faherty, Exile in Erin: a confederate chaplain's story: the life of Father John Bannon (St Louis, 2002); James M. Gallen, ‘John B. Bannon: chaplain, soldier and diplomat’, www.civilwarstlouis.com/History/fatherbannon; http://washtimes.com/civilwar (websites accessed 10 May 2006)

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/jesuitica-confederate-priest/

As he lay in prison after the defeat of his troops in the American Civil War, Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States, received a small token of comfort from Pope Pius IX. It was a crown of thorns, together with a portrait of the pontiff, as a sign of sympathy and support. The man most likely responsible for bringing Davis so firmly to the Pope’s attention was an Irish Jesuit, Fr John Bannon. Fr Bannon became a prominent leader of the Irish community in St Louis and an indefatigable chaplain during the war. He was sent by Davis to Ireland to urge emigrants not to sign up with the Union, and he used his time in Europe to visit the Pope. He had several long audiences with Pio Nono, during which he pressed – successfully, apparently – the Confederate cause.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John Bannon 1829-1913
At Roosky County Roscommon on December 29th 1829 was born Fr John Bannon. He was the first priest ordained by Cardinal Cullen in Maynooth in 1853. He came under the influence of Archbishop Kendrick of St Louis USA, and thus came to volunteer for work in America.

For twelve years he led the active and full life of a parochial missionary in St Louis, with a zeal and energy not yet forgotten. The came the American Civil War and Fr Bannon became a chaplain to the Confederate Forces with whom he sympathised.

Having done valiant service in this war until its close, he returned to Europe, where he joined the Society becoming a novice at Milltown Park in 1866, being then 35 years of age.

His first appointment was to the Mission Staff where his companions were Frs Robert Haly and William Fortescue. After years of arduous toil in the missionary field, he held various posts of trust, in Belvedere, Tullabeg, University College, until finally he was made Superior at Gardiner Street in 1884. Here for upwards of thirty years he laboured with his characteristic energy and zeal. He founded and directed for years the Sodality for Commercial Young Men,

The last two years of his life were years of inactivity and suffering patiently borne, and he died peacefully on July 14th 1913.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 113 : Autumn 2002

LEST HE BE FORGOTTEN : JOHN B BANNON

Kevin A Laheen

On 29 December 1829, Mrs. John Bannon was travelling to Dublin to visit her sister who was ill. On reaching the village of Rooskey she went into labour and gave birth to her son, John.

He was educated at Castleknock College, and later on entered Maynooth College to prepare for the priesthood. Just short of his twenty fourth birthday, he was ordained by Archbishop (later Cardinal) Paul Cullen. After a few months of pastoral work in the diocese of Dublin, he received permission from the same Archbishop to transfer to the diocese of St. Louis, USA, where Archbishop Peter R Kenrick was experiencing a shortage of priests in his diocese.

It was not long before the people and priests of St. Louis realised that John was a very gifted preacher. He was said to have “possessed a commanding pulpit presence”, standing as he did, well over six feet in height, and possessing a voice that needed no amplification. While still in his mid-twenties he was appointed pastor and built the magnificent parish church of St. John in downtown St. Louis. This church serves the people of that parish to this day. Very soon there was a feeling among the clergy that the next diocese that fell vacant would be filled by him. However, John had other ideas. He resigned from his parish and joined the confederate army as chaplain.

Stories of his courage, which at times bordered on the imprudent, are legion in the accounts of the various campaigns in which he was engaged. Frequently he crossed into enemy territory to absolve and anoint some of the enemy soldiers who had fallen in battle. When warned about this rashness he merely replied that when God wanted him he was ready to go. There were times when he had escapes which others described as miraculous, such as the time when a federal shell crashed through the church where he was offering mass for the troops.

At the end of hostilities Father Bannon was technically a prisoner of war and confined in his movements. However at the invitation of the southern president, Jefferson Davis, he ran the blockade and crossed the Atlantic in the Robert E. Lee. This was the ship's last escape. The British captured it on its return journey. In 1863 Bishop Patrick Lynch, Bishop of Charleston, and Father John formed a delegation to Pope Pius IX to explain the cause of the Confederacy, which was more friendly to the Catholic Church than the northern states.

When he returned to Dublin he spent much of his time dissuading young prospective emigrant Irishmen from joining the northern cause as he had first-hand knowledge of how young emigrant men were used as cannon fodder by the Federal army. Some New York papers had stated “we can afford to lose a few thousand of the scum of the Irish”. He also exhorted parish priests to influence young men in a similar manner. While in Rome he had made a retreat and also met the Jesuit General. He felt drawn to the Society and on 9th January 1865 he entered the recently opened Jesuit novitiate at Milltown Park.

Most of his life as a Jesuit was spent in Gardiner Street where he was Superior from 1884-90. His reputation as a preacher was well known and he was in constant demand nationwide for his services when sermons on special occasions were needed. Canon McDermot of the diocese of Elphin was a great church-builder and when he died many of these churches were still very much in debt. In November, 1871, Father Bannon preached a charity sermon in Strokestown to help reduce the debt on the new parish church. The Sligo Champion reported that the sermon was such a success that the church debt was almost wiped out. Being, as he was, a native of the diocese, the people regarded him as one of their own, and this may have moved them to be more than normally generous.

After many years of service in Gardiner Street, he died there in July 1913. The Irish Catholic reported that seventy nine priests attended his funeral Mass, and that over a thousand members of his famous Sodality walked behind his coffin on its way to Glasnevin cemetery. As they laid him to rest, he left behind him a life that was as fruitful as it had been varied.

Note: The definitive biography of this great priest is at present being written, and will be launched in St. Louis this autumn.

Barnewall, John, 1576-1617, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/893
  • Person
  • 23 June 1576-11 August 1617

Born: 23 June 1576, Stackallen Castle, County Meath
Entered: Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG) (cf Tournai Diary MS n 1016, fol 351, Archives de l’État, Brussels)
Ordained: 04 April 1609, Mechelen, Belgium
Final vows: 1616
Died: 11 August 1617, Drogheda, Co Louth - Romanae Province (ROM)

Studied Humanities in Ireland and also studied in Douay. Taught Grammar and Greek. Master of Arts.
In 1609 came from BELG to AQUIT on matters re Irish Mission
From 1609 to 1611 was in Professed House in Bordeaux
1616 looking after Irish Mission
His father, Robert Barnewall is called “Seigneur de Stackalais. His mother is Alsona Brandon.
He renounced his Stackallen inheritance

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
Son of Robert Lord Stackallen and Alsona née Brandon - he renounced his inheritance of Stackallen
Studied Humanities partly in Ireland and partly with his Philosophy at Douai graduating MA
He is shortly referred to in a letter from Fr Lawndry (Holiwood) to Richard Conway 11/08/1617 (IER Arril 1872 p 292)
He arrived in Ireland in 1617 (??)
Professor of Greek; besides the Breviary he recited daily the Office of the Blessed Virgin; was styled the “poor man’s Apostle”; most zealous and obedient, “omnium virtutum specimen” says Holywood.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Robert and Alison neé Brandon
Had already achieved an MA before Ent 07/10/1599 Tournai
1601 After First Vows spent four years in Regency, then completed his studies at Douai and Louvain and was ordained at Mechelen, 4 April, 1609
1609-1611 At Bordeaux
1611 A member of the Dublin Residence, he exercised his ministry in Kildare, later in Dublin and finally in Drogheda where he died 11 August 1617
Father Holywood in his Annual Letter aluding to Father Barnewall' s death, described him as an 'apostle of the poor'

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John Barnwell SJ 1576-1614
John Barnwell was born in Stackallen Castle County Meath in 1576 of a noble Norman family which gave many members to the Society. Like William Bathe, John Barnwell renounced his inheritance of Stackallen and entered the Society at Tournai in 1599.

He came to Ireland in 1609 and worked as a missionary in the neighbourhood of Drogheda. He was known as the poor man’s apostle. Besides the Breviary, he recited daily the Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary,

He died near Drogheda in 1617.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
BARNEWALL, JOHN, I find by F. Richard Daton s letter from Bordeaux, 13th of January, 1615, that F. Barnewall was then detained in that city by illness, and unfit to proceed to the Mission, where his services were much wanted. But seven years later I find him called to Ireland.

Barrett, Patrick, 1866-1942, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/897
  • Person
  • 15 January 1866-03 March 1942

Born: 15 January 1866, Carrick-on-Shannon, County Leitrim
Entered: 05 October 1883, Milltown Park, Dublin; Dromore, County Down
Ordained: 1897, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin
Final vows: 15 August 1900
Died: 03 March 1942, Milltown Park, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

First World War chaplain

by 1899 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1918 Military Chaplain : Bettisfield Park Camp, Shropshire

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Note from Francis X O’Brien Entry
He studied Philosophy at Milltown and then Mungret for with three other Philosophers , Edward Masterson, Franics Keogh and Patrick Barrett.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 17th Year No 3 1942
Obituary :

Rev Patrick Barrett SJ

The Rev. Patrick Barrett, SJ., whose death took place in Dublin, was the youngest son of the late Mr. Michael Barrett, of Finner, Carrick- on-Shannon, where he was born in 1866. Educated at the former College Tullabeg, he entered the Society of Jesus in 1883, and after a period of teaching at Clongowes pursued his higher studies at Milltown Park. Dublin, being ordained priest by the late Archbishop Walsh on August 1, 1897, at the Church of St. Francis Xavier. He completed his training at Tronchiennes. Belgium, and after spending a few years as master at Mungret College, joined the mission staff, and was engaged for twenty years in giving missions in various parts of the country. He served for two years as chaplain in the last war. Perhaps his best and most enduring work of his life he inaugurated in 1924. when he became Director of the working men's retreat house at Rathfarnham Castle, a post he held till failing health in 1940 forced him to relinquish this labour of love.
As a missioner he was very energetic and industrious and was most faithful in attending to the Confessional. His instructions were sound and practical but he was not a great preacher. The vast amount of good he must have done for souls will not be known on this earth.
Although the work of the Retreat House in Rathfarnham had begun before Fr. Barrett went there, it may be truly said that he, by his zeal, perseverance and instinct for order and discipline established the work upon the secure basis on which it, rests to-day. On coming to Rathfarnham he recognised at once that for the efficient working of the Retreats a new Chapel and Refectory were necessary. Hence with the sanction of his superior, he set about the work of collecting the necessary funds, and in a comparatively short time the Chapel
and Refectory were built and furnished.
Fr. Barrett had definite talent for organisation, and this he pressed into the service of the Retreats. For many years he was a, familiar figure in the streets of Dublin as, with rather stolid and measured gait he trudged from one business establishment to another, rounding up possible retreatants and selecting men of more than ordinary ability or standing in their employment whom he enrolled as Promoters of Retreats or, as he subsequently called them, Knights of Loyola. The fidelity of these men to Fr. Barrett's appeal and the zeal with which they threw themselves into the work of rounding up retreatants in the city are amply proved by the continuous procession of working men which, since the inception of Fr. Barrett's campaign, has went its way week-end after week-end, to Rathfarnham. and also by the numerous presentations made to Fr Barrett personally and to the Retreat House since 1924. Amongst these should be mentioned in particular the Grotto of Our Lady, erected in 1926 by the employees of the Dublin Transport Company, and the life-size Statue of the Sacred Heart which stands in the grounds by the lake, presented by the Coopers of Guinness Brewery. As a giver of the exercises Fr. Barrett does not seem to have shown outstanding merit. He could. however. on occasion when stirred by special circumstances, speak with great effect. The influence which Fr. Barrett exercised over those whom he met in Rathfarnham and the affection and veneration which he inspired were due rather to the deadly earnestness of the man, the personal interest he took in each of his retreatants and his gifts as an understanding and sympathetic private counselor. To perpetuate his memory and as a. tribute to the work done by Fr. Barrett in Rathfarnham, some of his old retreatants are having his portrait painted in oils with the object of presenting it to the Retreat House. Many moreover, have had Masses celebrated for the repose of his soul. R.LP.

◆ The Clongownian, 1942

Obituary

Father Patrick Barrett SJ

Only a very short portion of Fr. Barrett's life as a Jesuit was spent in Clongowes. His chief work was giving missions throughout Ireland, in which he was very successful, especially as an organiser. He acted as Chaplain during the European War, 1914-18. For over 12 years he was Director of Retreats at Rathfarnham Castle, and during that time he did untold good. He took a deep personal interest in those making the retreats, and his words of practical advice and encouragement helped many a one to bear cheerfully and courageously the day's burden in imitation of “The Worker of Nazareth”. As a practical way of inculcating the principles of Catholic Action he organised the “Knights of Loyola” who live to carry on his work. During the last few years of his life he was a great sufferer, becoming totally blind about a year before his death, but he bore all his sufferings with the greatest patience and resignation.

Bathe, William, 1564-1614, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/913
  • Person
  • 12 April 1564-17 June 1614

Born: 12 April 1564, Drumcondra Castle, Dublin
Entered: 14 October 1595, Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: c 1602
Final vows: 02 December 1612
Died 17 June 1614, Madrid, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)

Mother was Eleanor Preston
Studied Humanities in Ireland, Philosophy at Oxford and Theology at Louvain
Was heir to Drumcondra Castle. Writer, Musician and Spiritual Director
Died as he was about to give a retreat to the court of Philip II of Spain
“Janua Linguarum” edited 20 times and in 8 languages

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
Son of John, a Judge and Eleanora née Preston
Heir to Drumcondra Castle
Writer; Musician; Spiritual Director; Very holy man
Studied Humanities in Ireland and Philosophy partly at Oxford and partly with his Theology at Louvain.
Admitted to the Society at Courtray (Kortrijk) by BELG Provincial Robert Duras, and Entered at Tournai
(Interesting mention is made of him in Irish Ecclesiastical Record March 1873 and August 1874.)
After completing his studies he was made Rector at Irish College Salamanca
He died at Madrid aged 50 just as he was about to give a retreat at Court of Philip II
His “Janua Linguarum” was edited about twenty times and once in eight languages.
(cf de Backer “Biblioth. des Écrivains SJ” who enumerates his writings)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Elder son of John, of Drumcondra and Eleanor, née Preston, daughter of the third Viscount Gormanston.
He entered on his higher studies at Oxford but was prevented from graduating by the Oath of Supremacy. During his time at Oxford when he was still only twenty, he published ‘A Brief Introduction to the true Art of Musicke’. A Brief Introduction to the skill of Song' appeared a few years later. To these publications as well as his family's intimacy with Perrott, Lord Deputy of Ireland, William owed his reception at the court of Elizabeth 1. Eventually he renounced his inheritance in favour of his brother and determined to become a priest.
Studied for three years at Louvain before Ent 1595 Tournai
After First Vows he was sent to complete his studies at St. Omer and Padua and was Ordained priest c. Summer 1602.
1602 He was now named secretary to Mansoni, Papal Envoy to Ireland but the Irish defeats at Kinsale and Dunboy rendered Mansoni's Embassy superfluous. By early Spring 1603 he was in Spain. There were many requests for him to return to Irish Mission, but he remained in Spain until his death in at Madrid 17 June 1614.
He was the valued spiritual director of the Irish College, Salamanca and it was there he wrote in collaboration with Stephen White and others his “Janua Linguarum” which appeared in 1611. This book went into many editions in various European languages including English. The English version, which in turn went into many editions, was shamelessly pirated without reference to Bathe's authorship.

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Bathe, William
by Seán P. Ó Mathúna

Bathe, William (1564–1614), diplomat, author, and Jesuit, was born in Drumcondra castle on Easter Sunday 1564, son of John Bathe (d. 1586), Irish solicitor general, chancellor of the exchequer, and grandson of James Bathe (qv), chief baron, and Eleanor Bathe (daughter of Jenico Preston, 3rd Viscount Gormanston, and Catherine Fitzgerald, sister of Thomas Fitzgerald (qv), ‘Silken Thomas’). He was educated privately in Dublin and at St John's College, Oxford; he left before graduation, probably on grounds of conscience. In 1589 he registered in Gray's Inn, one of the four inns of court in which candidates for the Irish bar were required to study. He attended the courts of Elizabeth and Philip II before commencing the study of theology in Louvain (1592), and entered the Jesuit order in Courtrai (1595). He acted as intermediary for O'Neill (qv) during the early stages of the nine years war. After ordination he was appointed adviser to Ludovico Mansoni, legate, later to Ireland. They reached Valladolid in December 1601 but did not proceed further after the fall of Kinsale.

Bathe never returned to Ireland. Two long letters written in June 1602, in Irish Jesuit archives, indicated keen support for fresh forces massing in northern Spain to free Ireland a jugo haereticorum (‘from the yoke of the heretics’). He maintained periodic contact with the court of Philip III. A brother, Sir John Bathe (qv), deeply respected in Old English circles, assumed the role of religious spokesman for his class for more than a quarter of a century; he too visited the Spanish court. A younger brother, Fr Luke Bathe, headed the Capuchin mission in Ireland in the 1620s and was a renowned preacher. William Bathe was spiritual director to expatriate students in the Irish College, Salamanca. He founded a sodality, ‘Congregación de pobres’, for the spiritual and temporal welfare of the poor of that city, and gained a wide reputation for conducting retreats and days of recollection in monasteries and seminaries. He died suddenly in June 1614 while holding a mission for government personnel in Madrid.

His Brief introduction to the true art of music, published in 1584 while he was a student in Oxford (reproduced by Colorado College of Music Press, 1979), and A brief introduction to the skill of song (1596; new ed. by Boethius Press, 1982), were among the earliest printed texts in English on the theory of music and song, and highlighted the ambiguities in mutation from one hexachord to another in a melody with a range of more than six notes. Aparejos para administrar el sacramento de penitencia (1614) reflected his pastoral work. His main claim to fame, however, was Ianua linguarum (1611) with its long preface on linguistic theory. At least thirty editions of this work were published. The most elaborate, A messe of tongues (London, 1617), Ianua linguarum silinguis (Strasbourg, 1629), and Mercurius quadrilinguis (Basel and Padua, 1637), included English, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Spanish, Italian, and German versions. He used short pithy sentences in parallel columns to enable mature students to learn several languages simultaneously. He allowed no repetition of the 5,300 different items of lexis. His multilingual presentation was adopted by Ian Amos Komensky for his Janua linguarum reserata series. Bathe's first cousin, Christopher Nugent (qv), 14th Baron Delvin, used a small number of colloquial phrases in parallel Latin, Irish, and English columns in his Primer of the Irish language for presentation to Queen Elizabeth (1562). The primer followed a system used by English-born wives in the Kildare household to learn Irish from the early fifteenth century. As such the method predated the Aldine Press and the Adagia of Erasmus.

E. Hogan, Distinguished Irishmen of the sixteenth century (1894); S. P. Ó Mathúna, An tAthair William Bathe, C.I, 1564–1614: Ceannródaí sa Teangeolaíocht (1980); id., ‘The preface to William Bathe's Ianua Linguarum (1611)’, Historiographia Linguistica, viii, no. 1 (1981); id., William Bathe, S.J., 1564–1614: a pioneer in linguistics (1986); id., ‘William Bathe, S.J., recusant scholar: “weary of the heresy” ’, Recusant History, xix, no. 1 (1988), 47–61

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/jesuitica-5/

JESUITICA: First musical textbook
The first musical textbook in the English language, A brief introduction to the true art of musicke (1584), was the work of William Bathe, born in County Dublin, who became a Jesuit
in 1596. A genuine polymath, he had by that stage already taught mnemonics to Queen Elizabeth I, presented her with a harp designed by himself, and studied at Oxford, Gray’s Inn and Louvain. He invented a simple form of musical notation (presently being researched in Trinity by Sean Doherty), and as a Jesuit wrote a seminal book on linguistics, and was an important pioneer in popularising the Spiritual Exercises.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father William Bathe 1564-1614
William Bathe was born on April 2nd 1564 in Drumcondra Castle, the grounds of which is the present day asylum for the male blind, now in the charge of the Brothers of Charity.

He was a fairly close relation of Elizabeth I of England. As a young man he was sent as a personal messenger to the Queen by the Viceroy of Ireland. He became a great favourite of hers and used amuse her greatly by his skill in playing all kinds of musical instruments. He also entertained her by teaching her mnemonics.

His skill in music was both practical and theoretic. He invented a “harp of new device”, which he presented to the Queen. He also wroteb a treatise called “A Brief Introduction to the True Art of Music”. His name was also renowned for his famous book “Janus Linguarum”, a method of learning Latin or any foreign language, which ran into hundreds of editions iun most European languages, and held its place as a teaching method for centuries.

But his greatest claim to fame, and his merit in the sight of God was, that having spent some years at Oxford with no little distinction, being such a favoutite of Elizabeth, with a glorious career in front of him in the world, he returned to Ireland, surrendered his rights to his father’s extensive estates and entered religion. He became a Jesuit at Tournai in 1596.

He spent 19 years of most usefiul work in the Society, working in the Irish Colleges on the continent. Inspite of repeated requests, and his own desire, he was not released to work on the Mission in Ireland.

He died with a great reputation for sanctity in Madrid on June 17th 1614, at the early age of 50 years.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
BATH, WILLIAM, a native of Dublin. After studying at Oxford he grew weary of heresy, and retiring to the Continent entered the Novitiate at Tournay, in 1596. When he had finished his studies at Padua, he was ordered to Spain, and appointed Rector of the College of his Countrymen at Salamanca. To the regret of all who knew his merits, he was prematurely taken off by illness at Madrid, on the 17th of June, 1614, aet. 48. He has left :

  1. “An introduction to the Arte of Music”. 4to. London, 1584.
  2. “Janua Linguarum”, 4to. Salaman ca, 1611.
  3. “A Spanish Treatise on the Sacrament of Penance”. N.B. This was edited at Milan by F. Jos. Cresswell, in 1614. 4. “Instructions on the Mysteries of Faith, in English and Spanish”. F. More in p. 112 of his Hist. Prov. Angl. has inserted a letter of F. W. Bath, in praise of F. Person’s “Christian Directory”.

Boylan, Eustace, 1869-1953, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/937
  • Person
  • 19 March 1869-17 October 1953

Born: 19 March 1869, Dublin
Entered: 07 November 1886, Dromore, County Down
Ordained: 1902
Professed: 15 August 1905
Died 17 October 1953, Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1897 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1889
by 1904 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1905 returned to Australia

◆ 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 Dromore, Northern Ireland under John Colgan.

1888-1889 He studied Rhetoric at St Stanislaus, Tullabeg
1890-1894 He was sent to Australia and St Aloysius Sydney, teaching fourth grade.
1895-1896 He taught at Riverview and was involved in Theatre, Choir, Music and Debating.
1897-1899 He was sent to Leuven for Philosophy
1899-1903 He was sent to Milltown Park Dublin for Theology
1903-1904 He made Tertianship at Drongen, Belgium
1904-1906 He was Director and Editor of the Irish Messenger, taught and was Prefect of the Gymnasium at Belvedere College SJ.
1906-1919 Because of chronic bronchial problems he was sent back to Australia and Xavier College Kew. There he taught, was Hall Prefect, and Prefect of Studies from 1908-1917. He also edited the Xavierian 1915-1917, and wrote a popular school novel “The Heart of the School”, a light commentary on social life at Xavier.
1918-1949 He began his most remarkable position as Editor of the “Australian Messenger of the Sacred Heart” and “Madonna”. During this time he was stationed at St Patrick’s, Melbourne, where he also served as rector and Prefect of Studies from 1919-1921. He also held the job of National Director of the “Apostleship of Prayer” and promoter of the Marian Congregation within the vice-Province. During this time he built a fine entrance hall and science block, which also contained the Messenger building.
1949-1953 His final years were spent at Canisius College Pymble, where he continued to write.

Throughout his life he was afflicted with deafness, and soon after Ordination he became almost totally deaf. He continued to give retreats and hear confessions, but it was only late in life that he received real help from hearing aids. He had a most joyful nature that endeared him to people. He was a good writer, a fine editor and a popular retreat giver.

Note from Vincent Johnson Entry
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.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 29th Year No 1 1954

Obituary :
Father Eustace Boylan (1869-1953)
On October 17th, the Feast of St. Margaret Mary, Father Boylan, who had devoted so many years of his life to spread of devotion to the Sacred Heart, died at Canisius College, Pymble.
He was born in Dublin in 1869 on the feast of St. Joseph, was educated at Belvedere College and entered the Novitiate at Dromore, Co. Down, on 7th November 1886. Four years later he went to Australia and spent the next six as master at St. Aloysius' and Riverview Colleges in Sydney. He studied philosophy at Louvain and theology at Milltown Park, where he was ordained priest in 1903.
He made his Tertianship at Tronchiennes, and then became editor of the Messenger of the Sacred Heart, and taught as well at Belvedere, during the years 1905-7. In the following year, owing to bronchial trouble he was transferred to Australia and was prefect of studies at Kew College 1908-18. In the latter year began his long association with St. Patrick's, Melbourne, where he was Rector during the years 1919-22 and editor for 32 years of the Australian Messenger. For 30 years he edited as well the Madonna, organ of the Sodality, and was National Director of the Apostleship of Prayer. His rare literary talents were thus given full scope. In addition to regular editorial articles, he found time to write many booklets on religious and apologetical subjects. His pamphlet on the Inquisition was a best seller. He was author of two well-known works of fiction : Mrs. Thunder and Other Tales and a 400-page school story dealing with Kew College, entitled The Heart of the School, which was hailed by competent critics as the finest school story since Tom Brown's School-Days. His latest work, entitled What is Chastity, which suggests a method of instructing the young in the matter of purity, will appear shortly from the publishing house of Clonmore and Reynolds.
Fr. Boylan represented the Australian Province at the Jesuit Congress held in Rome in the autumn of 1948 in connection with the work of the Apostleship of Prayer and on that occasion he spent some months in our Province. He was an ardent admirer of the late Fr. Henry Fegan, who had been his master in the old days, and during his stay in Dublin Fr. Boylan gathered material for a Memoir of his patron, and for that purpose interviewed many who had known Fr. Fegan well, both Jesuits and laymen.
Admirers of Fr. Boylan claimed for him the distinction of having won for himself the widest circle of real friends ever formed in Australasia : a large claim, assuredly, but, given his genius for friendship and the opportunities that were his during a long and busy life, that claim may not be unfounded. Certain it is that his long association with the Messenger and Madonna brought him into thousands of homes.
The hope has been expressed that selections from his writings will be given permanent form in a Volume for publication ; his excellent prose writing would thus be preserved from oblivion to the advantage of the rising generation. R.I.P.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Eustace Boylan 1869-1953
On October 17th 1953, on the Feast of Margaret Mary, Fr Eustace Boylan, who had given so many years of his life to the devotion of the Sacred Heart, died at Canisius College, Pymble, Australia.

Born in Dublin in 1869, he was educated at Belvedere, and entered the Noviceship at Dromore in 1886.

After his ordination he was editor of the “Irish Messenger” from 1905-1907. Then owing to bad bronchial trouble he went to Australia.

In Australia he became Rector of St Patrick’s Melbourne 1919-1922. Retiring from the Rectorship he began his long career of 32 years as editor of the Australian Messenger and for 30 years editor of the Madonna. He was a prolific writer. His pamphlet on the Inquisition was a best seller, while his school story “The Heart of the School”, was hailed by critics as the finest school story since “Tom Brown’s Schooldays”.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1954

Obituary

Father Eustace Boylan SJ

Fr Eustace Boylan, who died in Australia last October, brings us back a long way in our search for his first connection with Belvedere. It was in 1884 that he came to the College, and after two years he entered the Society where he was to give 67 years of devoted service to God. It has been pointed out to us that last year's “Belvederian”" unwittingly overlooked his distinction of being the oldest living OB. This he undoubtedly was at the time the article concerned was written, and had he lived to read it, we can well imagine the chuckle with which Fr Eustace might have said: “I am not dead yet”. Alas, he himself had corrected the error two months before publication, and had handed on his distinction to his old school-mate, Fr Lambert McKenna.

After the usual training Fr Boylan was ordained in 1903. In 1905 he was back here to teach and to edit the Messenger of the Sacred Heart for two years. It was at that time that the late Fr Bernard Page, then a Scholastic, founded and was the first Editor of the “Belvederian”. He was indeed fortunate in having by his side Fr Boylan, who had already begun a lifetime of editing.
Fr Boylan left his native Dublin in 1907 for Australia, where he had earlier spent some years teaching. This time he was to remain, beginning as Prefect of Studies and Master in St Francis Xavier's College, Melbourne. In 1919 he became Rector and Prefect of Studies of St. Patrick's College in the same city, and a few years later he began 32 years as Editor of the Australian Messenger of the Sacred Heart, during 30 of which he also edited the Madonna. Throughout this period he lectured and wrote books and pamphlets with considerable success, but his principal work was always the Messenger, and we conclude with part of an appreciation which appeared in it after his death.

Father Boylan was a merry man. He had no place for the gloomy or pessimistic view of things. Perhaps this was because he never ceased to have the heart of a boy. He knew the boy's heart well and was at his best describing it. He had the power of seeing the humour of things quickly, and his vivid imagination would work on any odd phrase or act and draw the greatest fun from it. His optimism, which led him always to see the best of things, together with his childlike simplicity, prevented him from ever being cynical in his judgment of others.

Eustace Boylan has gone to his reward : the reward of a life of 84 year's lived for God. Before him have gone the works of those years, the Masses offered and Sacraments conferred innumerable times, students helped through difficulties, and sinners helped to Grace, troubled souls counselled and encouraged; partners helped on to marriage and many lives brightened. If the Kingdom of Heaven is for those who are as little children, he enters truly into his glory. May he rest in eternal peace."

Boyton, William, 1610-1647, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/941
  • Person
  • 15 August 1610-13 September 1647

Born: 15 August 1610, Cashel, County Tipperary
Entered: 27 September 1630, Mechelen, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 1637, Antwerp, Belgium
Died: 13 September 1647, Cashel, County Tipperary - described as Martyr

Son of Edward Boyton and Helen Suetonia (Sutton?)
“I studied in Ireland under Fr John Shee, then Philosophy at Lille with the Jesuits from 1627-30. Admitted to Society in Flanders Belgian Province at Brussels 20 September 1630 and then at Mechelen 28 September 1630”
1633 at Louvain
1636 at Antwerp
1638 at Castrensi Mission - (Chaplain to the army?)
1639 at Brussels College
Killed 13/09/1647 at Cashel - hacked with swords by lunatic soldiers in Church of Cashel, or shot near B Virgin’s altar while hearing confessions

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Son of Edward and Helen Sueton (Sutton?) - Mechelen Album
Early education in Ireland with John Shee SJ then went to St Omer from 1627-1630. He was then admitted to the Society by James Stratius, BELG Provincial, at Brussels 20 September 1630, from where he went to the Mechelen Novitiate. (Mechelen Album, Brussels and Arch. de l’État, Brussels, vol ii, p 518).
He was a Martyr for the Catholic faith - cut down,,or, as others say, shot near the Blessed Virgin’s altar in the Rock of Cashel, while hearing confessions. The soldiers who killed him especially marked out Priests for death. (cf Drew’s “Fasti”).
Had been a military Chaplain in Holland.
1649 Came to Ireland (cf Foley’s Collectanea)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Edward and Helen née Sweetman
Received his early education from John Shee. Then in 1627 went to the Jesuit College at Lille to study Rhetoric before Ent 27 September 1630 Mechelen.
1632 After First Vows he was sent for studies in Philosophy at Louvain and Theology at Antwerp, where he was Ordained 1637.
1638 His Tertianship at Lierre was interrupted by war and he served as a military chaplain until Summer 1639.
1639 Sent to Ireland and the Cashel Residence. He taught in the School and worked in the Church there.
1647 He died in the Cashel massacre of 13 September 1647 while hearing confessions for the beleaguered at the Cathedral Church. He was stabbed to death near the altar of the Blessed Virgin.
His name is on the list of Irish Confessors and Martyrs submitted for beatification to the Holy See.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father William Boyton 1609-1647
Fr William Boyton was born in 1609 and entered the Society at Mechelen in 1630.

His short life as a Missionary in Ireland was crowned by a martyr’s death at Cashel during the Confederate War. When the town was captured by the Parliamentarians under Lord Inchiquin, “Murrough of the Burnings”, the garrison, together with priests and religious and citizens withdrew to the Cathedral, which occupied a strong position on the famous Rock of Cashel. Here they held out until overcome by numbers.

“As the enemy forced their way in, Fr Boyton exhorted all with great fervour to endure death with the constancy for the Catholic faith, and was wholly occupied in administering to them the sacrament of penance. The enemy, finding him at this work, slew the father with his children. But God avenged the unworthy death of His servants, and by a magnificent sign, showed the cruelty of the massacre.

A Garrison of heretical troops was stationed on the Rock. On a certain night, an old man of venerable aspect appeared to its commander, and taking him by the hand, led him forcibly to the top of the Church tower, and asked him how he dared so impiously to profane that holy place. And as he trembled and did not answer, he flung him down into the cemetery below, where he lay half-dead and with many bones broken, until the following day, when having fully declared the divine vengeance which had overtaken him, he expired”.

(“Sufferers for the Catholic Faith in Ireland”, Myles O’Reilly, p 214)

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
BOYTON, WILLIAM. We know little more of this Father than that he was barbarously murdered by the Parliamentary troops, at the taking of Cashell, on the 13th of September, 1647.

Brennan, James, 1854-1941, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/69
  • Person
  • 02 November 1854-16 June 1941

Born: 02 November 1854, Dublin
Entered: 19 October 1875, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 15 June 1889
Final Vows: 02 February 1894, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 16 June 1941, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

Early education at St Stanislaus College SJ, Tullabeg

by 1880 at Laval France (FRA) studying
by 1881 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1888 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 16th Year No 4 1941

Obituary :
Father James Brennan
Few men of the Irish Province have given it a more loyal and devoted service than did Fr. James Brennan during the 86 years of his membership of it. He filled many important positions in most of its houses, in four of which, Clongowes, Galway, Belvedere and Rathfarnham he was Superior. During the last years of his life when he had ceased to hold office, he continued his interest in the Province, its welfare and its activities, showing this by the earnestness and enthusiasm with which he devoted himself to his work as Editor of the Province News. All who had dealings with him in this capacity will recall how glad he was to receive any news of Ours and of their doings, and how glad he was to publish anything that would edify and encourage us in our work.
Fr Brennan was at school in Tullabeg for 6 years (1869-75), and if these be added to his 68 years in the Society, the grand total of 71 years of connection with the Irish Province is reached. It is thus no wonder that he was so loyal and devoted a member of the Society and the Province. His noviceship was passed in Milltown Park under Fr. Charles McKenna, and at its conclusion he was sent to Clongowes with three others, Messrs. Fegan, Manning and Elliott, for his juniorate under the guidance of Fr. Zimmerman. The four juniors lived in the old Infirmary, since burnt down, and only mixed with the rest of the Community on special occasions. His second year of Juniorate was spent in Milltown Park. He then went to Laval for Philosophy, but he had to leave there the following year when the members of the Society were driven out of France. The French Jesuits had acquired the Imperial Hotel in St Helier, Jersey, and opened it as a Scholasticate, and there Mr Brennan spent the year 1880-81. Life, However, in foreign houses had not agreed with him, so he finished his Philosophy in Milltown Park.
His regency was spent in Clongowes (1802-07) where he was at first Third Line Prefect, then four years Master, acting as assistant to the Prefect of Studies during portion of the time. During this time, the amalgamation of Clongowes with his old school, Tullabeg, took place, and Mr Brennan had much to do with the success of the venture. He proved himself an excellent and very successful master, and was very popular both inside and outside the classroom.
In 1887 he went to Milltown for Theology, but again his health failed, and he had to continue his studies privately in Tullabeg, which had just been opened as a Noviceship and Juniorate. He was then ordained in 1889, and went to Belvedere, where he spent three years, 1889-92, as Master and the third as Minister. In 1892 he went to Tullabeg for his Tertianship, being at the same time Socius to the Master of Novices.
The year 1893 saw the beginning of his long connection with Clongowes where he was Higher Line Prefect for a year, then Minister for six years, becoming Vice Rector in 1900. The period of his Rectorship saw many important improvements effected in the College. The chief of these was the acquiring of the temporary church at Letterkenny and erecting it in Clongowes where it still does duty as gymnasium, theatre, examination hall, and luncheon room on the Union Day.
We next find him on the Mission staff (1904-06) with his headquarters at the Crescent, Limerick, but it was not long before he was in office again. being appointed Rector in Galway in 1906, and two years later Rector in Belvedere (1908-13). It was during this time that Belvedere purchased the grounds at Jones Road which have proved such a, valuable acquisition to the College.
In 1913 Rathfarnham Castle was purchased and opened as a House of Studies for our scholastics attending lectures in University College, Dublin. The important position of Superior of the new house was entrusted to Fr Brennan, and everyone agreed that no better choice could have been made. The characteristics which had made him so successful in his previous positions were to be still more conspicuously displayed in this new sphere of duty. His paternal rule mingling kindliness and generosity with insistence upon observance of discipline, made him an ideal Superior of young men fresh from the noviceship.
After six years in office he ceased to be Superior, but remained in Rathfarnham, with the exception of one year (1920-21), when he was Spiritual Father in Clongowes, until the end. During the earlier portion of this period he suffered much from vertigo and had to give up saying Mass. His cure which he believed to have been obtained by the prayers of a Nun to Fr. Willie Doyle, is one of the most remarkable of the many favours attributed to Father Willie.
In 1925 the Province News was started and Fr.Brennan was appointed. Editor, holding that position until his death which took place on June 17th. He had been for almost 30 years in Rathfarnham, and it will be hard to imagine The Castle without his cheery presence. He was so interested in everybody and everything connected with the place, so edifying, so helpful as an advisor and as a confessor that he will be sorely missed. May he rest in peace.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father James Brennan 1854-1941
The kindly face of Fr James Brennan will long be remembered by those young scholastics to whom he ministered for 30 years of his Jesuit life in Rathfarnham. Sixty years in all he spent in the Society, years of fruitful and lasting work.
He was closely associated with Clongowes in his early days in various capacities, finally as rector. It was he who acquired the temporary church at Letterkenny, and had it erected in Clongowes to serve for many years as a gymnasium, theatre and examination hall. He was the first Editor of the “Province News”.
He passed peacefully to his reward on June 17th 1941.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1942

Obituary

Father James Brennan SJ

Fr James Brennan, Rector of Belvedere from 1908 to 1913, died at Rathfarnham Castle on June I7th, 1941. He had given 66 years of loyal and , devoted service to the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus, and of these years not a few were spent in Belvedere. His early education was received at Tullabeg, and after he had entered the Society in 1875 he studied at Clongowes, Laval in France, Jersey and Milltown Park. He said his first Mass in Belvedere in 1889 and then came here for three years, being at first a Master and afterwards Minister for one year. In 1908 he came back as Rector, after two years as Superior of Galway. His Rectorship was a very important one for the College in many ways. One of his first actions was to start the Debating Society which since then has been such a useful training ground for budding orators. Then, too, he was responsible for the separation of the Senior House from the Preparatory School, and for giving to each a separate staff. When Fr Brennan came to Belvedere the playing fields were situated at Croydon Park, in Fairview, but in 1910 he purchased the grounds at Jones's Road which we still use. The benefits of having grounds so near the College were soon evident, for the JCT won its first Rugby Cup two years later.

All those who came in contact with Fr Brennan during this period of his life retain for him a most affectionate memory, and it is of interest to record here that his kindliness was shown even to those differing in religion, as was witnessed by Dr William Anderson, formerly Headmaster of Mountjoy, who, as he said in a kind letter of sympathy, “came to know and appreciate Fr Brenrian” during the years of his Rectorship.

Fr Brennan spent six years as Rector of Rathfarnham Castle after he left Belvedere and he remained there, with the exception of one year, until his death. He will long be rernembered by those who met him there as a most kindly and sympathetic confessor, as a holy and edifying priest, and as one whose cheery presence was the greatest blessing to the House. May he rest in peace!

◆ The Clongownian, 1942

Obituary

Father James Brennan SJ

Among Clongownians of the last twenty years of the nineteenth century and the first few years of the present century, the name of Fr James Brennan is a household one, while his connection with Tullabeg goes back much further, as he was a very prominent boy in the school in the early seventies. Having entered the Society of Jesus, he came to Clongowes in 1882, where he spent five years as a Scholastic. He was a very successful Junior Grade teacher and was able to inspire his boys with interest, and even enthusiasm, over their Latin and Greek lessons. He was in Clongowes during the Amalgamation year, and, as an old Tullabeg boy and a present Clongowes master, he helped very considerably to bring about the successful union of the two schools.

In one incident during this period Mr Brennan played a prominent part. The fire which destroyed the study hall and refectory wing took place on April 9th, 1886. No one worked harder than he to save as much as possible, but, in spite of all efforts, nearly all the desks in the study hall were burnt, together with the contents - mostly school books. It was concluded by many, to whom the wish was father to the thought, that, as there were no school books, there could be no work done for a long time. On the next day, however, which was a play day, Mr Brennan went to Dublin, returning with. sufficient books to enable classes to be re sumed the next day. Some boys were not as grateful to him as they might have been.

After his ordination to the priesthood he returned to Clongowes as Higher Line Prefect in 1891-2. Those who were here during that year will remember his interest in, and enthusiasm for, gymnastics and musical drill, in which during the night play hour for a considerable portion of the year the greater number of the boys were engaged. The following year he became Minister, and held that post for five years, until he was appointed Rector during the Christmas term of 1900. Few of those who were in Clongowes at the time will have forgotten the scenes of enthusiasm which showed how popular was his appointment. During his term of office (1900-04) he effected many improvements. He laid down a completely new system of sewerage, he tiled the Higher and Third Line galleries, he put in the large window over the hall door of the Castle, and, most useful of all, he purchased the building that had been used as a church in Letterkenny while the Cathedral was being built, and erected it here, where, during the last forty years, it has served as gymnasium, theatre, examination hall, skating rink, and, at times, as infirmary.

Having completed his term of office as Rector here, he was appointed Rector of St Ignatius College, Galway (1906-8), of Belvedere College, Dublin (1908-13), and of Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin (1913-19). He spent one more year in Clongowes (1920-21) as Spiritual Father. The last twenty years of his life were passed in Rathfarnham Castle doing such work as his poor health would allow. He passed away very peacefully on June 17th last year. May he rest in peace.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father James Brennan (1854-1941)

A native of Dublin, spent two years (1904-1906) at the Crescent as a member of the small mission band resident here before World War I. During his long life, Father Brennan occupied many positions of trust in the Province: Vice-Rector of Clongowes (1900-1904); Rector of St Ignatius', Galway (1906-1908); Rector of Belvedere College (1908-1913). He was the first superior appointed over the Jesuit scholasticate at Rath farnham Castle, Dublin (1913-1920).

Brennan, Joseph A, 1867-1945, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/952
  • Person
  • 01 September 1867-15 May 1945

Born: 01 September 1867, Hawthorn, Victoria, Australia
Entered: 02 February 1884, Richmond, Australia (HIB)
Ordained: 1897
Professed; 15 August 1903
Died: 15 May 1945, St Ignatius, Richmond, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05/04/1931

by 1892 at Exaeten College Limburg, Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1893 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1899 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Note from Patrick Muldoon Entry :
Entered at the new Irish Novitiate in Richmond, and it was then moved to Xavier College Kew. He went there with Joseph Brennan and John Newman, Scholastic Novices, and Brother Novices Bernard Doyle and Patrick Kelly.

◆ 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 St Patrick’s College, Melbourne, before entering the Society, first at Sevenhill and then at Richmond and Xavier College Kew, under Aloysius Sturzo.

1886-1888 and 1890-1891 He was a teacher and Prefect of Discipline at Xavier College
1888-1890 He was a Teacher of Greek, Latin and English as well as Prefect of Discipline at St Ignatius College, Riverview.
1891-1894 he was sent abroad for studies, first to Exaeten College, Netherlands for one year of Philosophy, and then two more years Philosophy at Leuven, Belgium.
1894-1898 He was sent to Milltown Park, Dublin for Theology
1898-1899 He made Tertianship at Drongen, Belgium.
1899-1901 He returned to Australia and teaching senior Physics at St Aloysius College, Burke Street
1901-1908 He was sent to St Ignatius College, Riverview to teach and was also a Division Prefect. He was a very strict disciplinarian.
1908-1914 He was sent to the Richmond Parish
1914-1916 He was sent teaching and prefecting at Xavier College. Here he was also Rowing master in 1915.
1916-1922 He was appointed Superior and Parish Priest at St Ignatius Parish, Richmond, and at the same time served as a Consultor of the Mission. From 1921-1922 he was also very involved in the second Church in the parish, St James’, North Richmond.
1923-1936 he returned teaching at Xavier College. At the same time he was an examiner in quinquennials, Spiritual Father, and Admonitor at various times.

Apart from a period of Parish work at Hawthorn in 1937 and Richmond 1942-1944, he spent the rest of his life at Xavier College. He took a special interest in games, particularly Australian Rules, on which he was an authority.
He was a very tall and powerful man who had been a stern disciplinarian in his early days. He was noted as being a very good theologian and very definite in his answers to moral problems. As a preacher, he was solid but dull. He was regularly left in charge of the Vice-Province when the Provincial was away. He had a high reputation among secular clergy as well.

At the request of the General, in 1921-1922 he was asked to solve a serious problem concerning a plantation in Gayaba, New Guinea. He was also chosen to superintend the foundation of Corpus Christi College, Werribee, whilst awaiting the arrival of the Rector, Albert Power. Finally he was responsible for making arrangements with the Archbishop of Perth, Dr Prendiville, for the establishment of St Louis School in 1938

Note from Vincente Guimera Entry
Vincente Guimera entered the 'Society in 1890, and after studies and some teaching, he was sent to New Guinea in the 1920s to help find a solution to the problems in a mission that had been acquired from the German Franciscans. The superior general asked the Australian superior, William Lockington, to settle the matter, and he sent Joseph A. Brennan to New Guinea. They closed the mission and gave it to the SVDs. Three Spanish Jesuits then came to Sydney briefly and stayed at Loyola. Guimera subsequently lived and taught at St Aloysius' College, 1924-25

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 20th Year No 3 1945
Obituary :
Fr. Joseph Brennan (1867-1884-1945)
Fr. Joseph Brennan, a member of the Australian Vice-Province, died at St. Ignatius' Residence, Richmond, Melbourne, on May 16th.

Born in Victoria, Australia, 6th September, 1867, be entered the Society at St. Ignatius, Richmond, 23rd January, 1884. He came to Europe for his higher studies. At Exaten in Holland he pursued his philosophy and at Milltown Park, Dublin, his theology, and was ordained in Dublin in 1897. He made his third year's probation at Tronchiennes.
On his return to Australia he was attached to Riverview College, Sydney, as Prefect of discipline, a post he held for ten successive years, 1900-1910. In the latter year he was changed to St. Ignatius Residence, Richmond, and remained operarius till 1915 when he re turned to the class-room, teaching at St. Aloysius College, North Sydney, 1915-1924. From 1924 to 1942 (with a break of one year at Manresa, Hawthorn, Melbourne) be taught uninterruptedly and was at the same time Spiritual Father to the community. The last three years of his life he was stationed at St. Ignatius', Richmond. May he rest in peace.

Browne, Michael, 1853-1933, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/74
  • Person
  • 22 April 1853-20 November 1933

Born: 22 April 1853, Limerick
Entered: 07 September 1877, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 27 July 1891
Final Vows: 02 February 1897, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 20 November 1933, Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

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

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Note from Br Thomas Johnson Entry :
He was assisted in his last moments by his Spiritual Father, Michael Browne, and died 27 May 1900.
Note from James Dempsey Entry :
He finally retired to Tullabeg and he died there 03 October 1904. he was assisted there in his last moments by the saintly Michael Browne, Rector and Master of Novices.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 3rd Year No 1 1927

Jubilee : Fr Michael Browne
The official celebration in Fr Michael Browne's honour took place in Rathfarnham on the 29th September. After a good deal of College work, Rector of the Crescent, Clongowes and Tullabeg he was Master of Novices at three different periods and is now Spiritual Father to the fifty-seven Juniors at Rathfarnham and, whenever he gets a chance, spends, at least, seven days a week giving retreats,

Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934
Obituary :
Father Michael Browne
Father S. Brown has kindly sent us the following appreciation :
On the morning of November the 28th died Father Michael Browne in his eighty first year.

He was born in Limerick in 1853 and was educated partly at Crescent College in that city and partly at Clongowes. On leaving the latter college he applied to enter the Society. Superiors thought him too delicate and rejected the application. He accordingly went to Carlow College to study for the priesthood. But the call was insistent. After a visit to Rome and to Lourdes he tried again and this time was successful. He entered the Novitiate at Milltown
Park on the 7th of September 1877. The fifty-six years of his life in the Society were outwardly uneventful. He had relatively little contact with the outer world and shunned all
appearances in public. But within the Province he held nearly every office of trust and responsibility with the exception of that of Provincial. He was Master in the colleges (Tullabeg
1883-85, Clongowes '86 and Mungret 1891-94). During this last period he was Prefect of Studies. He was Spiritual Father in Clongowes ('96- '99) and later in Rathfarnham (1924-51). He was Rector of Tullabeg from 1920 to 1924, again 1918 to 1910. During these two periods of office he was Master of Novices. He was Rector of the Crescent (I905-7). Finally he was for eleven years Socius to the Provincial. That is surely a remarkable record.
But he will perhaps be remembered not so much for his eminent services to the Society as for his personality. For throughout his life he was known to be a man of deep and genuine holiness and there were many who did not hesitate to speak of him as a saint. Despite all his efforts to conceal it his austerity was well known. Especially in his Tullabeg days he was merciless to himself, Without being a very close observer one could know that he was all tied up with hair-shirts and chains. Indeed this was the origin of some of his characteristic gestures. Superiors had to exercise constant vigilance to see that he took sufficient food. He was more lenient in his later years, but even in his last year he sometimes made his meal of dry bread. He never smoked nor drank wine or spirits. He had schooled himself in the most rigid observance of “custody of the eyes.” He seldom, in fact looked at the person to whom he was speaking and he not infrequently made upon outsiders an impression of aloofness and indifference. There was indeed no little aloofness in his way of life. He made few friends and acquaintances. But his manner was by no means cold and repelling. He had a temper but it was under such stern control that few suspected its existence.
He was the most unworldly of men. He never read newspapers and took little or no interest in the little events of the day. He preached a lofty spirituality that soared high above the earth. One felt oneself among naked mountain peaks and breathed a somewhat rarefied atmosphere. Still humor, of a simple and homely kind, was by no means banished from
his Retreats and exhortations. He even courted a hearty laugh from his audience. He himself could laugh heartily in his deep bass voice and often when telling some amusing anecdote
the tears would run down his cheeks and his mirth would so choke his utterance that listeners sometimes failed to catch the climax or the point of the story. His memory held a great
store of such anecdotes centering very largely in Limerick, which always held a warm place in his heart.
He was always an intense student and a lover of books. He wrote, so far as I know, nothing for publication, but he accumulated copious notes, largely written in shorthand. Many
years ago he discarded large quantities of MS. material relating to his work as a master. He loved to pick up for a few pence in second hand bookshops books that appealed to him. His friends knew that books were the only gifts that would be acceptable. He belonged, one might say, to the Victorian epoch. In literature as in other things, modernity had no appeal for him. His taste was for history and biography and he seems never to have read fiction.
He went to God as straight as he knew how, without hesitations or compromises and regardless of the cost. He thought, as he lived, in straight lines, looking neither to right nor left. His character was strong and simple without subtlety and without crookedness of any kind. On subjects about which he cared at all his principles were fixed, his mind was made up. And as with principles of thought so with principles of conduct. Early in life he had laid down such principles for himself and to these he adhered undeviatingly to the end.
His spiritual life was hidden with Christ in God. One could only guess at its characteristics. It included certainly a great love for Our Lady and he never began an exhortation in the
chapel without reciting in full an Act of Consecration to her. Much of his time, especially towards the end, was spent in the chapel. All who really knew him were convinced of his great holiness.
As long as strength remained to him he worked unsparingly. I have known him to give as many as seven Retreats on end. During these Retreats he was the despair of the Sister who
waited on him at meals. In the last year of his life he was still giving domestic exhortations and lectures in various convents. He held the honorable post of confessor to the Archbishop of Dublin.
In his last illness, as long as his mind held good, he was his old self, concerned only about the trouble he was giving, and praying almost without interruption.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Michael Brown 1853-1933
Fr Michael was preeminently the Ascetic of the Province. His austerity was well known, in spite of all his efforts to conceal it. Especially in his Tullabeg days as Master of Novices, he was merciless on himself. He was a great believer in hairshirts and chains, and Superiors had to exercise vigilance to make sure he took sufficient food. Yet he was not a solitary, given over to lone contemplation. In his time, he held every administrative post in the Province, save that of Provincial, though he acted as Vice-Provincial on one occasion. He was untiring in giving retreats, even up to his last years, and was known to have given 7 retreats on end, without interval.

At the same time he was not a repelling character, rather he engendered great respect and affection. He had his sense of humour, and his deep laugh was familiar to all his listeners.

He went straight to God as he knew how, without compromised. His use of creatures was mainly by abstention. When he died on November 22nd 1933, after 56 years in the Society, one eminent fellow Jesuit remarked that Fr Michael Brown’s holiness was reminiscent of the old Irish monks, to which an equally eminent Jesuit replied “Nay more, his eminence was pre-Christian”.

◆ The Clongownian, 1934

Obituary

Father Michael Browne SJ

Father Michael Browne, whose death took place at Rathfarnham Castle, on Monday, November 20th, 1933, in his eighty-first year, was one of the links that bound together Tullabeg and Clongowes. He was an Old Clongownian, had been a master and Prefect of Studies in both Colleges, was Spiritual Father and Rector of Clongowes and had been twice Rector of Tullabeg when it was no longer a secondary school. For over thirty years before his death, he had no direct connection with Clongowes. His name was hardly known to the later generations of boys here, but those who were at Clongowes in the late nineties realise that a great Clongownian has died.

Michael Browne was born in Limerick on April 22nd,. 1853. His early school years were spent in that city at the Sacred Heart College, then known as St Munchin's College. Having already a wish to become a Jesuit, he came to Clongowes in 1872, and, after two years here, he applied to enter the noviceship. Owing to his delicate state of health the application was refused It was a sore trial; but Michael Browne did not lightly abandon anything on which he had set his heart. He wanted to become a priest and succeeded in gaining admission to St Patrick's College, Carlow. His lungs were weak and his health did not improve, while the call to the Jesuit noviceship became more insistent. Heaven was stormed with prayers by himself and by his friends. It used to be told how his sister, who was a nun and who died at an early age, offered her life that Michael might be able to become a Jesuit. After a visit to Rome and to Lourdes, undertaken to obtain his desire, he asked again to be received into the Society of Jesus. This time he was accepted, and he entered the novitiate at Milltown Park, Dublin, on September 7th, 1877, three years after he had left Clongowes.

Before we write of the man, let us recall dates and occupations, for they are instructive. At the end of his noviceship. at Milltown Park, Michael Browne took his yows on September 8th, 1879. Then followed four further years at Milltown, one as a Junior, the remaining three studying philosophy. From 1883 to 1886 he was Prefect of Studies and Master of English and Mathematics at Tullabeg. He came to Clongowes in the Amalgamation Year, as Assistant Prefect of Studies and Mathematical Master of the Royal University students. From 1887 to 1891, he studied theology, for the first two years at Louvain and later at Milltown Park, where he was ordained in 1890. During his last year at Milltown as a priest he was a constant visitor to the Incurables Hospital, Donny brook, where the memory of his kindness and of his holiness was still fresh among the patients twenty years afterwards. In 1891, he was appointed Prefect of Studies at Mungret, a position which he held for four years, when he also taught the Royal University students at a time when they were bringing fame to Mungret. On leaving Mungret in 1895, he went to Chieri, Italy, for his tertianship. The next year found him Spiritual Father and a master at Clongowes. When Father Devitt left Clongowes in the summer of 1900, Father Michael Browne succeeded him as Rector, but it was only for a few months, as he was nominated Rector and Master of Novices at Tullabeg towards the end of November of the same year. During this period the late Father John Sullivan was a novice under Father Brownie's direction. They were kindred souls, and ever after novice and Novice Master had a lifelong veneration for one another. In the August of 1905, Father Browne was made Rector of the Sacred Heart College and Church at Limerick, This was, perhaps, the most active period of his very busy life, as, while Rector, he taught in the College, worked in the Church, and had charge of the three branches of the Sodality of the Blessed Virgin the Children of Mary whom he addressed once a week, the Ignatian Sodality for young men and the boys' Sodality of Our Lady. In August, 1908, we find him again Master of Novices and Rector of Tullabeg. Three years later he was named Socius to the Provincial, a position which he held for eleven years, during which time also, he was an indefatigable worker in the Church at Gardiner Street, In 1922 he went to Tullabeg as Master of Novices for the third time, and in 1924 he was transferred to Rathfarnham where he was Spiritual Father and occupied in giving Retreats to within a few months of his death. It is a summary of over half-a-century which Father Browne spent slaving in the service of God.

Though holding most important positions within the Society of Jesus, where he earned universal respect and reverence, Father Michael Browne's life was to a great extent hidden from the outside world. But within and without the Society, the striking holiness of his life impressed everybody with whom he came in contact. One could not help noticing his complete other-worldliness. “God everywhere and in everything; a constant endeavour to be pleasing in His eyes, and to require nothing of Him except the means so to be” : such was the motive force behind the life of Father Michael Browne. Despite his efforts to escape notice he could not conceal his austerities. Hair shirts, chains and disciplines were part of his everyday life. His only rest during many years was a few hours on a plank bed. When Father Browne was a priest at Clongowes there was a tradition among the boys that their spiritual father slept on “boards and pebbles”, and the schoolboy phrase was not far removed from the truth. Indeed, Superiors, knowing that he worked very hard, had to be constantly vigilant to see that he took enough food. During Retreats, when urging his hearers to practise what they preached, he frequently mentioned the phrase said to have been used by a member of his congregation to a preacher who had taught stern self-denial : “When I heard you in the pulpit I despaired of salvation, but when I saw you at your meals I took courage again”. When one saw him take his food, the courage was all on Father Browne's side, for dry bread was the chief item of his unchanging menu, While this was his daily routine he astonished all by his capability for constant and trying work. He was known to have given as many as seven Retreats on end. More than once, when others engaged in the same work fell ill, he conducted two Retreats simultaneously.

Yet though he taught self-denial, he would not allow others to do anything rash in this respect : “Take your food”, he would say, “we must keep the engine going, if it is to do its work”. His war on self was relentless. It extended to everything in his life. Passing through Switzerland on his way to Italy, it was known that he did not raise his eyes to look upon the beautiful scenery, upon which he did not expect to have the opportunity of gazing again. It was not, indeed, that he did not like pleasing sights, for while at Mungret as a young priest he used to go to the upper storey of the College to admire the charming sunsets, and then would kneel down and recite the Te Deum. When at Lourdes he prayed that he might not witness a miracle, for he did not want to lessen the full merit of his faith. .

But this war on self was only one means which Father Browne employed to bring him nearer to God. In his eyes, prayer was much more important than exterior mortification. His constant union with God was remarkable. He spent a large portion of the day and many hours of the night in formal prayer. To the ordinary spiritual duties of a Jesuit he added many more to which he was ever faithful. He passed hours each day before the Blessed Sacrament, There, in meditation, he prepared the subject matter of his sermons and Retreat lectures, It was in the Chapel he recited the Divine Office, where in a quiet corner he usually knelt without resting on any support. He had a strong and tender devotion to our Blessed Lady, and from his early years he said the full fifteen decades of her Rosary daily. He once told a friend that the biggest thing in his early life had been his being made a Child of Mary. How really he took this was shown by his unbroken habit of reciting the short act of consecration used in the reception into the Sodality before every spiritual address which he gave. Never was anything allowed to interfere with his spirit of prayer and of recollection. Rarely, if ever, did he read newspapers or novels, unless when such reading was part of his work. This practice he recommended to others. To their questioning, about reading a book or a novel, nearly always came the same disconcertingly logical answer, by way of another question: “Does it help you to say your prayers?” Devotion to the Sacred Heart and to the Passion he held very dear. Among the saints he seemed to be especially devoted to St Teresa and St Francis de Sales, to St Aloysius and St John Berchmans. This last saint had a big place in his life. “What would St. John Berchmans do?” was a frequent question to guide those under his direction.

It was as a Spiritual Director that Father Michael Browne was chiefly known. For those who met him for the first time, and who had never come to him with a serious trouble, there was much in the strict custody of his eyes and a certain aloofness in his manner, which made them think that Father Browne was too cold and too much removed from them to be really helpful. Yet it certainly was not so. When he came in contact with a weak or troubled soul, Father Browne was kindness itself. He was fond of repeating the saying of St Francis de Sales : “You will catch more flies with a spoonful of honey than with a barrel of vinegar”. And again he would say: “I have not found any instance in the New Testament where Our Lord dealt harshly with the penitent sinner”. He dealt with those in trouble as did the Master. The poor around Gardiner Street knew that he was not cold, and felt that “Saint Browne”, as they used to call him among themselves, was their friend.

He would encourage those who had to struggle against temptation by telling them that he had a lifelong fight against a violent temper, and then he would urge the recital of Blessed Claude de la Colombière's Act of Confidence in God. Some of his sayings already mentioned show how Father Browne constantly employed the best method of the Spiritual Director, which consists in making the soul help itself. For him, Spiritual Exercises were always to be under stood in the Ignatian and literal meaning, a real striving after higher things. During Retreats and at other times, he expected a strong effort in response to his advice, yet he was ready to pardon failure which comes from weakness and not from lack of good will.

His marvellous memory held a seemingly inexhaustible store of anecdotes from history and biography, sacred and profane, of which he was a deep student. He was Victorian in his reading and conversation, and most of his stories were of people and of events of the last century. Archbishop Healy and Bishop O'Dwyer of Limerick, whose cousin he was, were the subjects of many a reminiscence. He had a great fund of anecdotes about Limerick, which ever had a warm place in his heart. His sense of humour, another help to holiness, often so overcame him when telling a story that the end was lost in the loud and hearty laugh so characteristic of him, while tears of mirth rolled down his cheeks. His wide reading served him well when preaching and giving Retreats. He prepared his matter most diligently, wrote out his sermons carefully, in which one saw the influence of Newman, with whose writings he was very familiar, but he never used a note nor a book in the pulpit or when giving a Retreat lecture. Yet he would recite a dozen verses of the Scriptures, or a large part of a chapter of the Imitation of Christ, or the full text of one of the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius with faithful accuracy.

Father Michael Browne is dead. But he has left behind him among his fellow-Jesuits a lasting memory of great kindness, of severe asceticism, of very hard work, of a prayerful life and of remarkable holiness. To have known him is regarded as a privilege by those who were brought into familiar contact with him during life. To have been asked to pen these lines by the Editor of “The Clongownian” has been looked upon as a very great privilege by the present writer, who gladly pays this tribute to his old Master of Novices and to a loved and revered friend through many years.

May God give His richest rewards to Father Michael Browne who spent his life so generously in working for Him.

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1934

Obituary

Father Michael Browne SJ

It is our sad duty to have to record the 1 death of one, whose connection with Mungret goes back to the nineties of last century - Father Michael Browne. But, though it is many years since he was working amongst us, still the memory of him and of his saintliness has remained ever fresh and lasting among those who had the good fortune to live with him.

Father Michael was a Limerick man, born in that city in 1853, the son of the late County Court Judge, Daniel Browne. His early years were spent at the Crescent, Limerick, and then at Clongowes Wood College. On leaving the latter college, he applied to be admitted into the Society of Jesus, but, to his great disappointment, was rejected on the score of ill-health. Being determined to be a priest, he entered Carlow College. Here his vocation for the Society persisted. In response to its dictates, he applied again to be admitted into the Society, and, to his great joy, was accepted. He always attributed the success of this second application to the intercession of the Virgin Mother, and here we have the first evidence of that sweet devotion which was the predominating and all-pervading one of his life.

In 1877 he entered the Jesuit noviceship at Milltown Park. His ideals, like those of all novices, were very high, St Stanislaus was to be outdone, but, there was this difference with Father Michael, as his brethren can attest - he arrived where they. aspired and his striving after sublime perfection never lost the fervour of the noviceship days.

His noviceship finished, Father Browne continued on at Milltown Park, studying Philosophy for three years, and then departed for St Stanislaus' College, Tullamore, at that time one of the leading lay colleges in the country. Here he acted as Prefect of Studies in 1883. In the year of “the amalgamation with Clongowes”, 1886, he proceeded there, to act as Assistant Prefect of Studies. Theology absorbed his energies for the next four years, partly at Louvain, partly at Milltown Park, culminating in the long-awaited glory of the priesthood in 1891.

Mungret claimed him for the next three to four years, as Prefect of Studies. During these years, he had charge of the Sodality of Our Lady, an office that was especially dear to him on account of his tender devotion to the Virgin Mother. The following extract from the history of the Sodality is not without interest :

“Father D Gallery (the first Director) was succeeded by Father M Browne. By him the Sodality was directed for four years, and it owes to his assiduous care, the deep root it has taken in the College”. -(”Mungret Annual”, 1897).

From Mungret, he next set off for Chieri, Turin, there to go through his tertianship, the final moulding process of the Jesuit. He returned from Chieri to take up the Office of Spiritual Father to the boys and of Assistant in the People's Church. The kindness and saintliness displayed by him in these functions, won for him the “one post of distinction in the Society-Master of Novices”. This he held for ten years, at different intervals.

For three years he acted as Rector of the Crescent, Limerick, then was Novice-Master again, then Assistant to the Provincial. After eleven years in these duties, for the latter few of which he also exercised the ministry at Gardiner Street with great fruit and renown, he set out for Tullabeg once more, to fill the office of Novice-Master. After two years interval, he became Spiritual Father to the Scholastics in Rathfarnham Castle, which post he filled till his death. Though he had never been a man of robust health, owing to his natural delicacy and to his austerities, nevertheless he had successfully come through many a severe bout of sickness and had often been anointed. So his last illness was not looked upon with any great alarm at the beginning. But after a few days' illness, very little hope of his recovery was entertained, and he passed away, after a comparatively short illness, in his 81st year, on November 20th, 1933.

It would be an impertinence on our part to attempt to give an adequate estimation of Father Browne's lofty character within the narrow limits at our disposal. Suffice it to say, that, within the Order, he was held to be a man of great sanctity and of model observance, without, he was eagerly sought after, as a spiritual guide and Retreat giver by religious and clergy, and as a father confessor by the laity. May he rest in peace.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Community

Father Michael Browne (1853-1933)

A native of Limerick city and a pupil of this college, entered the Society in 1877. Until the close of the last century, he was master, or prefect of studies or spiritual father to the boys in Tullabeg, Clongowes and Mungret. From 1900 onwards he was given one post of responsibility after another and gave distinguished service to the Society: Rector and Master of Novices at Tullabeg (1900-1905); Rector of Sacred Heart College, Limerick (1905-1908); Rector again at Tullabeg (1908-1911); secretary to the Provincial (1911-1922); Master of Novices (1922-1924). The remaining ten years of his life were spent as spiritual father to the community at Rathfarnham Castle.

For many years, Father Browne's duties brought him into little contact with the outside world. Apart from his rectorship at the Crescent, his work was within the Society. Yet, without realising it, Father Browne, in his lifetime, was known to many outside the Society as a man of singular holiness. It was he who formed the servant of God, Father John Sullivan in his noviceship days. Until death called both these priests away in the same year, 1933, the former novice-master and the former novice regarded one another with humble veneration. A biography of Father Michael Browne from the able pen of Father Thomas Hurley (master at the Crescent (1928-33 and 1940-52]) was published in 1949.

Burke, Arthur, 1905-1988, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/968
  • Person
  • 14 May 1905-13 August 1988

Born: 14 May 1905, Armidale, NSW, Australia
Entered: 18 February 1922, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Ordained: 24 June 1937, Milltown Park, Dublin
Professed: 02 February 1940
Died; 13 August 1988, Clare, South Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the St Aloysius, Sevenhill, Adelaide, Australia community at the time of death

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05/04/1931

by 1928 at Eegenhoven, Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

Second World War chaplain

◆ 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 by the Christian Brothers at St Mary’s, Toowoomba and then at the University of Queensland, before entereing at Loyola College Greenwich.

1924-1927 After First Vows he was sent to Dublin (Rathfarnham Castle) where he studied Latin, English, Mathematics and Physics at University College Dublin, graduating with a BA in 1927
1927-1930 He was sent to Leuven, Belgium for Philosophy
1930-1934 He returned to Australia and Regency at St Ignatius Riverview. Here he taught History and Science. He feel foul of the Rector William Lockington when he took photos of the Chapel roof falling down on morning during Mass - it was thought the original design was the result of an impetuous decision by the Rector.
1934-1938 He returned to Ireland and Milltown Park for Theology
1938-1939 He made Tertianship at St Beuno’s Wales
1939-1941 He returned to Australia and teaching at St Aloysius Sydney
1942-1945 He became a Military Chaplain with the 2nd AIF, serving in the Middle East and Borneo, and when he retired he was a Major. He was well remembered by those who served with him for his kindness in writing home for hospital patients, and he was one of the few people who could get mail out at that stage. In subsequent years he attended reunions of his regiment, and ANZAC Day dawn services was a feature of his life.
1945-1947 He went back teaching at St Aloysius College Sydney
1947-1949 He was sent to Sevenhill
1950-1953 he was sent to do parish work at Toowong Brisbane
1953 He returned to Sevenhill where his contact with the people and as chaplain at the Clare Hospital gained him a reputation of a man of compassion, not only with his own parishioners, but with those from other denominations. He was a people’s priest, especially for children, the sick and elderly.
He spent most of his priestly life working among the people of Clare and Sevenhill. he was much loved, and portraits of him hang at Sevenhill and the Clare District Hospital. In total he spent 33 years there, and was much in demand for weddings, baptisms and funerals. A park and Old person’s home were named after him and he was named Citizen of the Year for Clare in 1986. At the 100th anniversary of the opening of the old sandstone-and-slate St Aloysius Church at Sevenhill, he wrote a booklet on the conception and building of the Church and College. Confidently fearless of electricity he made repairs and renovations to fittings and circuitry around the house. he also looked after the seismograph.
There were many legends of his driving ability. His pursuit of rabbits and vermin off the edge of the road cause fright to more than his passengers! His final act of driving involved hitting a tree in Clare now known as “Fr Frank’s Tree” which still bears the marks! Eventually some collusion between police and Jesuits resulted in his losing his licence, and he then relied on friends.
1972-1973 He was Parish Priest of Joseph Pignatelli parish in Attadale, Adelaide.

He was a man of charm and wit, humble and self effacing. Tall and lanky, with prominent teeth, he loved a laugh and always amused to see the mickey taken out of pompousness or self righteousness. He encouraged conversation and expansiveness. he was a man who was a natural repository of confidences, and his common sense and wisdom reflected an incarnational spirituality.
He was legendary in the parish as a fried to everybody, especially the needy or troubled. Eschewing denomination, he brought Christ to everyone he met, causing consternation among the more canonical when he celebrated sacraments with all denominations.
In his later years his forgetfulness was legendary too. He was often corrected at Mass by parishioners, late for funerals, using wrong names at baptisms and weddings.

He enjoyed being a pastoral priest and a Jesuit, was faithful to prayer and had a great devotion to Our Lady.He could preach at length and his liturgies were not the most celebratory, but they were prayerful and devotional. he communicated his own simple spirituality easily to others.

He always enjoyed the company of other Jesuits. He was a much loved and appreciated man

◆ 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.

Butler, William, 1848-1907, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/814
  • Person
  • 04 September 1848-03 February 1907

Born: 04 September 1848, County Galway
Entered: 07 November 1865, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1880
Professed: 02 February 1888
Died: 03 February 1907, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

by 1868 at Amiens, France (CAMP) studying
by 1869 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1871 at Spring Hill College AL, USA (LUGD) Teaching
by 1874 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1879 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Educated at Coláiste Iognáid.

After First Vows he studied Philosophy at Laval and Theology at Louvian.
He was then lent to NOR as a scholastic for three years.
When he returned from New Orleans he was sent to Clongowes for some years. He spent some time as a Priest at Tullabeg, and when the College closed there he went for Tertianship to Drongen. He then joined the Missionary Band and was an excellent and very vigorous speaker.
He spent the remaining years of his life at Gardiner St where he died 03 February 1907

Excerpts (paraphrased in part) from An Appreciation by One Who Knew Him (EM SJ)
He was a native of Galway. That he was endowed with natural talents of no mean order is quite true, talents for a somewhat extended range in Mathematical and Philosophical speculation. It is true that during his lifetime he improved and developed these natural gifts by assiduous toil. Truer still that he possessed a rare sensibility for the fine arts, especially for the art of Music. Those who are capable of forming a just judgement bear witness to the elegance and perfection of execution which he reached on more than one instrument, but especially on his favourite instrument, the violin..........he was far from looking on Music as the serious occupation of his life........He looked on it more as a legitimate means of relaxation after a hard day’s work, or still more, as a legitimate means of ministering to the recreation and enjoyment of others.
........After First Vows he went to St Acheul near Amiens for Rhetoric, and then to Louvain for three years Philosophy. He was then sent for Regency to Clongowes, and Spring Hill College Alabama on the New Orleans Mission. He was then sent to Louvain again for Theology, and was Ordained 1880. His Priestly life was spent at Tullabeg, Crescent and Gardiner St until his death there.
....Father Butler’s nature was highly sensitive and refined will, I suppose, may readily be taken for granted by those who understand what are the qualities which combine to make a talent for music approaches to genius. Whatever Father Butler may have appeared to strangers, this writer can amply testify that he was to those who lived with him, and knew him intimately, the simplest, most genial, and the most kind-hearted of men. To the end of his life he was as light-hearted, I had almost said frolicsome, as a boy. Few men could rival the gusto with which he told or listened to a merry tale. Few equalled the heartiness of his laugh.
....But though taking a measured delight in the innocent joys of this life, it was very evident that his serious purpose was often “to muse on joy that will not cease”. Underneath all his outward gaiety there was the abiding consciousness of weighty responsibility.......laboriously taming and bringing to subjection a somewhat naturally hot and impulsive nature. Certainly he did not wear his religion on his sleeve........but....he possessed in no stinted measure a deep faith, informed by a piety at once simple and tender.......

Note from John Naughton Entry :
1896 He finally returned to Gardiner St again, and was President of the BVM Sodality for girls, being succeeded by William Butler and Martin Maher in this role.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father William Butler (1848-1907)

Born in Galway, educated at St Ignatius College, and received into the Society in 1865, was at the Crescent for two short periods, 1888-1889 and 1901-1902. He was a talented preacher and most of his active religious life was spent as missioner or at work in Gardiner St Church. Father Butler, in his day, was known to many as a musician of outstanding ability. He was a violinist of sensitive technique and his services as leader for orchestral accompaniment to the choir at Sacred Heart Church were frequently availed of.

Cahill, Joseph B, 1857-1928, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/996
  • Person
  • 13 January 1857-30 November 1928

Born: 13 January 1857, Ballyragget, County Kilkenny
Entered: 07 September 1876, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1890, Milltown Park, Dublin
Professed: 15 August 1896
Died: 30 November 1928, St Aloysius College, Milson’s Point, Sydney, Australia

by 1895 at Roehampton London (ANG) making Tertianship
Came to Australia 1895

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education was at Stonyhurst.

After his Noviceship he spent a further two years at Milltown in the Juniorate, and then he was sent to Clongowes for Regency. At that time the Intermediate Cert was only two years in existence and he was given the task of preparing the boys for the senior grade. He also acted as a Sub-Prefect of Studies.
1891 He was back in Milltown for Philosophy, and then he returned for more Regency at Clongowes.
1888 He was sent to Louvain for Theology, and returned the following year when the Theologate at Milltown was opened, and he was Ordained there in 1890.
After Ordination he spent three years at Belvedere and was then sent to Roehampton for Tertianship.
1895 After Tertainship he was sent to Australia and started his life there at Xavier College Kew.
During his 33 years in Australia he worked at various Colleges : 19 at St Aloysius Sydney; 7 at St Patrick’s Melbourne - one as Prefect of Studies, two as Minister and Spiritual Father; 3 years at Riverview was Minister. He was also in charge of Sodalities, Moderator of the Apostleship of Prayer, Confessor to Communities and boys, Examiner of young Priests and so on. Whatever he did, these were always part of his work.
He died at St Aloysius Sydney 30 November 1928

Earnestness and hard work were the keynotes of Joseph’s life. Whether praying, teaching, exercising, he was always the same, deadly in earnest. Imagination was for others! Time and reality were his benchmarks. At the same time he was immensely kind, very genuine if not so demonstrative. He was an excellent community man, a good companion and he enjoyed a joke as well as any other man.

◆ 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 Stonyhurst College and St Stanislaus Tullabeg before he entered the Society in Dublin.

1879-1880 After First Vows he continued at Milltown Park for a year of Juniorate
1880-1881 He was sent for a year of Regency at Clongowes Wood College, teaching Rhetoric, and as Hall Prefect and Assistant Prefect of Studies.
1881-1884 He returned to Milltown Park for Philosophy
1884-1888 He was back at Clongowes doing Regency, teaching Grammar, French and Arithmetic. He also prepared students for public exams.
1888-1889 He was sent to Leuven for Theology
1889-1891 He continued his Theology back a Milltown Park
1891-1894 He was sent to Belvedere College to teach Rhetoric and Humanities.
1894-1895 He made Tertianship at Roehampton, England
1895-1896 He was sent to Australia and firstly to Xavier College Kew
18996-1901 He moved to St Patrick’s Melbourne, where he was also Minister and Prefect of Studies at various times.
1901-1903 He returned to Xavier College
1903 He was sent as one of the founding members of the new community at St Aloysius College, Milsons Point.
1904-1908 He was sent to St Ignatius Riverview
1909 He returned to St Aloysius, Sydney, and remained there for the rest of his life.

Those who knew him say he was a most exact man in all he said and did. He was meticulous with dates and had a good memory for names and facts. He was also a fine raconteur and enjoyed conversation. He took an interest in the doings of those around him and longed for communication of ideas. He maintained a steady interest and curiosity in everything he approached. He appeared to have enjoyed his life.
He was also a man able to adjust to circumstances. He certainly had many changes of status in his earlier years. However, he was happy in the Society, wherever he lives, relishing every moment and enjoying the recollection of memories.
He was a teacher for 42 years, a man who prepared his classes most carefully and was regular and exact in correcting. He was absorbed in his work and completely dedicated to duty, absolutely punctual to class, a model of exactitude to others, and happy in the hidden daily routine of classroom teaching.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 4th Year No 2 1929

Obituary :
Fr Joseph Cahill
Fr. J. Cahill was born in Dublin on the 13th January 1857, educated at Stonyhurst, and entered the Society at Milltown Park 7th September 1876.The noviceship over, he spent two more years at Milltown in the juniorate, and was than sent to Clongowes. The “Intermediate” was just two years old, and Mr Cahill was entrusted with the important work of preparing the boys of the Senior Grade. He also acted as Sub-Prefcct of Studies. in 1881 he began philosophy at Milltown, and when it was over returned to Clongowes as Master. 1888 found him at Louvain for Theology. Next year the new Theologate of the Irish Province was established at Milltown, and Mr Cahill was one of the first students. He was ordained in 1890. Three years at Belvedere followed, and then came the Tertianship at Roehampton. At its conclusion he bade farewell to Ireland, for in 1895 we find him a master at
Xavier College, Kew.
During the 33 years that Fr. Cahill lived in Australia, he worked in the Colleges - 19 years at St. Aloysius, 7 at St. Patrick's, 4 at Riverview and 3 at Xavier. At St Patrick’s he was one year Prefect of Studies and two years Minister and two Spiritual Father. Riverview had him as Minister for three years. He had charge of Sodalities, was Moderator of the Apostleship of Prayer, Confessor to communities and boys, Examiner of young priests etc. But whatever else he did the inevitable “Doc” or “Par. alum. ad exam.public” always found a place in the list of his activities. According to the Catalogue of 1929 he was Master for 43 years. He crowned a very hard working, holy life by a happy death at St. Aloysius on Friday, November 30th 1928.
Earnestness, steady hard work were the key-notes of Fr. Cahill's life. Whether saying his prayers, teaching a class, making a forced march across the Dublin hills, or playing a game of hand-ball he was always the same - deadly in earnest. If imagination ever sought an entrance into his life - and it is doubtful if it ever did - the door was slammed in its face. The realities of time and eternity were the things with which Fr Joe Cahill had to deal, and he dealt with them to the exclusion of all others. Still there was not a touch of aloofness about him, of a surly disregard for others. Quite the contrary, there was a plentiful supply of “the milk of human kindness” in his character. That kindness was very genuine, but not demonstrative. Fr. Joe was an excellent community man, a very agreeable companion, and he could enjoy a joke as well as the gayest Of his comrades.
Some one has said that it is easier to run fast for a minute than to grind along the dusty road for a day. Fr Joe did grind along the road, dusty or otherwise, not for a day only but for the 52 years he lived in the Society. RIP

Irish Province News 4th Year No 3 1929

Obituary :
Fr Joseph Cahill continued
The following appreciation of Fr. Cahill has come from Australia where he spent 33 years of his Jesuit life :
As a religious he was a great observer of regularity. He was punctuality itself. His preparation for class, his correction of home work etc. were the joy of the heart of the Pref. Stud. Amongst his papers were found the notes of his lessons up to the very last class he taught. He went every day to say Mass at the Mercy Convent, and for 18 years he was on the altar
with unvarying punctuality at 6.55. He always walked, having a profound contempt for cars. For a number of years his chief break was to go in holiday time to hear confessions in some remote convents which but for him would have no extraordinary. He rarely preached as he lacked fluency and was rather unimaginative, but he was splendid at giving a short and practical address.This was shown during his time as director of the Sodality for Professional men attached to St. Patrick's Melbourne. Here he won the esteem of the best educated Catholics in the city and held it to the end.
He was a great community man, the life and soul of recreation. He was one of the working community to the end. When his doctor assured him that a successful operation was possible but unlikely, he decided to face it. He was suffering far more than was generally known, yet he worked to the end. He delayed the operation till he had taught his last class for the Public Exams in History, and then, packing a tiny bag and refusing to take a motor car to the hospital, he went cheerfully, like the brave soul he was, to face the danger. In a week he was dead, but it was typical of him that he lasted long after the doctors had given him but a few hours to live. He was a man who never gave up, and we are greatly poorer for his loss. May he rest in peace.

An old pupil of his at St. Patrick's writes as follows :
He was a man of most engaging personality and a great favourite with the boys. He took part in our games of football and cricket. Sometimes his vigour was not altogether appreciated, although we admired his tremendous energy. He was a simple, homely, engaging man, keen in everything he undertook. A fine servant of God with all the attributes of one of Nature's Gentlemen.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Joseph Cahill 1857-1928
Born in Dublin on January 13th 1857, Fr Joseph Cahill spent twenty-three years of his life as a teacher in Australia. As a religious, he was a great observer of reality. He was punctuality itself. His preparation for classes, his corrections of class work, were the joy of the heart of the Prefect of Studies. Among his papers found after his death were ther notes for the last class he taught. He went every day to say Mass at the Mercy convent, and for 18 years he was on the altar with unvarying punctuality at 6.55am. He always walked, having a profound contempt for cars.

For a number of years, his chief break during vacations was to go to some remote convent, which but for him would have no extraordinary confessor.

When his doctor assured him that a successful operation for his complaint was possible but unlikely, he decided to take the risk. But, he delayed operation until he had taught his last class due for public examinations in History. Then packing a little bag and refusing to take a car to the hospital, he went cheerfully to his ordeal. He died within a week on November 20th 1928.

A fine servant of God, with all the attributes of one of nature’s gentlemen.

◆ The Xaverian, Xavier College, Melbourne, Australia, 1928

Obituary

Father J B Cahill SJ

Father Joseplı Bernard Cahill died at Sydney on Friday, 30th November, 1928, after a brief illness. He was born in Ireland in 1857 and, after being educated at Tullabeg and Stonyhurst, entered the Society of Jesus in 1876. Coming to Australia in 1895 on the completion of his studies, he was first sent to St Patrick's, and afterwards came to Xavier. After a couple of years at Xavier he went to Riverview and finally to St Aloysius, where he has been stationed for the last 18 years.

Father Cahill preserved a very live interest in everything Xaverian, and more especially in the doings of the Sydney Branch of the OXA, whose Patron he was. In spite of his seventy odd years Fr Cahill remained active to the end of his life. At the time of the Eucharistic Congress he was able to take part in all the functions of that crowded week. He had the joy of living a full life and dying in harness. May his soul rest in peace.

◆ The Aloysian, Sydney, 1929

Obituary

Father Joseph Cahill SJ

Three years ago we recorded in “The Aloysian” and celebrated at the College the Jubilee of Father Cahill-fifty years in the Society. And this year we cele brate the Jubilee of the foundation of the College. We should have wished to have Father Cahill, who had given twenty years consecutive good service to the College with us, but God wished otherwise. Last year he went to his reward, at the age of seventy-one, being born in 1857. He has, we hope, already entered on the great jubilee the eternal rest sung of in the Church's liturgy. And if our departed friends can know of and appreciate our wordly activities, and I think they can, Father Cahill is with us in spirit at our celebrations, keenly sympathetic.

Searching in one's memory for a word. to suggest the most characteristic fea. ture of Father Cahill, one finds one word continually recurring to mind - exactness.

For Father Cahill was exact in all he did and said. Like all historians he relished the dates of history, those num bers which give down to an exact point the deeds of man. And again he was exact in his memory of names and facts. If one hears a story often from the same person, one oftens notes slight discrep ancies in the telling, but with Father Cahill no, I have often heard him give his memories for example, of the famous case Saurin v. Starr, which had a peculiar interest to Catholics in the old world. ..... it was always the same as to fact in detail. He seemed to relate the details with a satisfaction which increased until the whole story finished, as it were, with a click of a complete adjustment and a smile in Father Cahill's face, as if one who would say “There you are, complete, exact the real and whole truth of this interesting little human comedy”. It was this obvious relish of telling that made his account. attractive to the listener. Father Cahill believed in and practised conversation, almost a lost art nowadays. “Tell me, now ...” he would question and at once you got going. He took an interest in all the doings of his fellow-men, and so longed for communication of ideas. Of all men and things with which he had contact at any time, he always retained an inter est. His days of schooling at Tullabeg and Stonyhurst, his studies in Ireland and on the Continent, his years of teaching in Australia. His life was full and his life was interesting to himself, And again here we react back to the same idea - exactness.

The obvious interest of Father Cahill at all points of his life showed an ad justment to circumstance. We are interested in what is, from a mental.view point, both new and yet old ... linked up with the old and introducing something new. Father Cahill relished his life as a Jesuit, because he fitted exactly into the cadre. He was at home and happy in the Society where all essentials were old and familiar, and looked out on the world outside with the interest almost of a child watching a procession from a window, every detail recorded and its beauty and novelty a delight for that moment, and for years after too, : in memory. . It was this exact adjustment to his milieu which made Father Cahill essen tially a good religious and Jesuit, an exact and devoted teacher. Of the seventy one years of his life - he was born in 1857, and died in 1928 - forty-two years were spent in teaching, and until the very end he showed by his careful preparation for class and his careful cor rection of work done by his class, his absorption in the work at hand. It often has been said that a life of each ing is a life of obscurity - I suppose in one sense this is so. The world hears little of the teacher, but he leaves his mark of good or ill, and the example of Father Cahill with his exact devotion to duty, his absolute punctuality - of course, true to type he had a watch that was always right, though the house clock might sometime be wrong - was an object lesson to all. But the abiding memory which is uppermost, and does most to help one, still in the struggle of life, is the memory of one, exactly adjusted to his vocation and surroundings, doing exactly the work assigned, and obviously relishing that work. It is a lesson of the joys that follow the exact performance of what God wants done, a consolation to us all in a world seething with dis content. In brief Father Cahill was the “faithful and prudent servant” rendered manifest in the flesh - a model to us all, “faithful over few things”, and now, we trust, placed over many, as a reward for exact dutiful service.

PJD

◆ The Clongownian, 1929

Obituary

Father Joseph Cahill SJ

Father Cahill’s first experience of Clongowes was from the master's desk. (As a boy he had been in Stonyhurst.) He came here just two years after the “Intermediate” was started, and was given the important work of preparing the boys of the Senior Grade, as well as acting as Sub-Prefect of Studies. Two years teaching then, and another spell of three years, from 1885 to 1888, and his work at Clongowes was done. Those who were taught by him know how well it was done. Some years later he left Ireland forever to do his work in Australia. No less than thirty-three years did he work in the Australian Colleges, and when death came it found him still active. Eamestness, steady, hard work were the key-notes of his life. Whether saying his prayers, teach ing a class, or playing a game, he was always the same-deadly in earnest. The realities of time and eternity were the things with which Father Joe Cahill had to deal, and he dealt with them to the exclusion of all others. Still there was not a touch of aloofness about him of a surly disregard for others, Quite the contrary, there was a plentiful supply of the milk of human kindness in his character, and that kindness was very genuine, if not demonstrative. He crowned a very hard-working holy life by a happy death in the College of St Aloysius, Sydney, on November 30th, 1928. RIP

Carroll, Kevin, 1911-1972, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1022
  • Person
  • 02 February 1911-01 February 1972

Born: 02 February 1911, Rathmines, Dublin
Entered: 02 September 1929, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 08 January 1944, Sydney, Australia
Final Vows: 15 August 1950
Died: 01 February 1972, Manresa, Hawthorn, 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 :
Early education was with the Christian Brothers before entering at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg.

1931-1934 After First Vows he went to Rathfarnham Castle and studied at University College Dublin, graduating BA Hons.
1934-1937 He was sent to Leuven for Philosophy
1937-1940 He went to Australia for Regency, teaching at Xavier College and Kostka Hall, Kew
1940-1944 He remained in Australia during the WWII years for Theology at Canisius College Pymble
1944-1945 After Ordination he spent a year at St Ignatius Riverview as Minister and Prefect of Discipline
1946-1947 He returned to Ireland and Rathfarnham Castle to make Tertianship.
1947-1950 He headed back to Australia and was sent as Minister to St Aloysius College, Milsons Point, and during the last of those years was Chaplain to the Medical Guild of St Luke
19511975-1956 He went home to Dublin in order to study the Pioneers Total Abstinence Association, and he then returned to Australia and the Provincial’s residence to promote this organisation.
1956- He lived at St Francis Xavier Lavender Bay for a year.
1957-1963 He was sent to St Ignatius Riverview, teaching Mathematics and being First Division Prefect.
1964-1966 He was sent to the Minor Seminary at Christchurch, New Zealand, as Minister, Prefect of Discipline and tones Master, and he taught Latin and Biology. During these years he continued his work for the “Pioneers”.
1966-1967 He came back to Australia and was sent to Toowong Parish
1967-1972 He was appointed Superior and Parish Priest at the Hawthorn Parish. he continued his work with the “Pioneers”, was Bursar, organised a Parish magazine, and he was Chaplain at Kilmaire Convent School. In 1970 he became Rector of the Alcoholism Foundation of Victoria, and in 1971 was president of the inter-church committee for alcoholism. For a time he was also a member of the Archdiocesan Senate, and secretary of the religious senate zone. He died suddenly after a heart attack.

He was a very able and intelligent man. He was bright, merry and kind and he had a great interest in people. He was also a good companion.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 21st Year No 4 1946
Fr. Kevin Carroll of the Australian Vice-Province reached Dublin early in the same month for tertianship in Rathfarnham.

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 1 1948
Fr. Peyton left for Australia on the “Mauretania” on 31st October in company with Fr. Conway, a member of the Viceprovince. Fr. Kevin Carroll, also a member of the Viceprovince, left Shannon Airport on 3rd November for New York, bound for San Francisco and Sydney. Mr. Monahan left Southampton on the “Queen Mary” on 20th November for New York; he took boat at San Francisco on 12th December for Sydney which he reached on 4th January. He will be doing his first year's philosophy at Loyola, Watsonia in the coming year.

Irish Province News 47th Year No 2 1972
We regret the news from Australia of the death of Fr Kevin Carroll at Melbourne. Fr Carroll was originally of the Irish Province but was among those transferred from the Noviciates or Juniorate to the New Australian Province in 1931. He was ordained in 1944; he returned to Ireland, 1951-52, to perfect himself in the methods of propagating the Pioneer Association and for some years after returning to Australia was engaged in that work. He served in New Zealand and 1966-7 was engaged in missionary work in Toowong; he was attached to Hawthorne Parish for the four years preceding his death, at the early age of 61, R.I.P.

Casey, Gerard H, 1905-1989, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/488
  • Person
  • 22 August 1905-03 February 1989

Born: 22 August 1905, Dungiven, County Derry
Entered: 31 August 1922, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1936, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1940, Ricci Hall, Hong Kong
Died: 03 February 1989, St Mary’s Home, Aberdeen. Hong Kong - Macau-Hong Kong Province (MAC-HK)

Transcribed HIB to HK : 03 December 1966

by 1928 at Eegenhoven, Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1931 fourth wave Hong Kong Missioners - Regency
by 1938 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 :
Following a Noviceship at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg he was sent to UCD where he graduated with a First Class Honours Degree in Latin and Greek.
1927-1930 He was then sent to Leuven, Belgium for Philosophy, whilst at the same time writing an MA thesis in Classics for UCD.
1930 he was sent to Hong Kong for Regency, and he was outstanding in his mastery of Cantonese, and he also learned Mandarin.
He then returned to Ireland and Milltown Park for Theology, and after Ordination in 1936, he made Tertianship at St Beuno’s, Wales

Having come originally come as a scholastic to Hong Kong. he returned after Ordination and became a teacher at Wah Yan College Hong Kong, a Lecturer in Geography at the University of Hong Kong. He had also taught at Belvedere College in Dublin. He was a teacher at Sacred Heart School, Canton. He taught English at United College in The Chinese University of Hong Kong, and also taught Church History at the Regional Seminary at Aberdeen.

He published a Cantonese-English Dictionary and a 100,000 Character Dictionary with basic meanings of characters and their sounds in Mandarin and Cantonese.

He also spent time as a Chaplain at Queen Mary Hospital in Hong Kong.

Note from Paddy Joy Entry
In late May 1943, along with Fr Gerry Casey he was arrested by the Japanese and interned at Stanley until August 7. According to Fr Casey “The dominate feature in Paddy Joy’s character was his solicitude, primarily for the conversion of pagans Though he couldn’t speak Chinese well, he pointed out one prisoner to me that he thought could be instructed and baptised, and I found he was right...... he had an observant eye and a keen mind. In public debate about moral matters such as birth control, he was quick and effective,”

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 1 1948

Frs. G. Casey and C. O'Conor represented the Province at the Solem Requiem Mass celebrated at Kikeel Church, Co. Down on 22nd January for the late Fr. John Sloan, S.J., of Patna Mission (Chicago Province) who perished in the Dakota crash outside Karachi on the night of 27th December. Fr. O'Conor was the Celebrant. A brief account of his career appears below.

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 3 1948

Frs. Casey G., Grogan and Sullivan leave England for Hong Kong on 2nd July on the ‘Canton’. On the following day Fr. Kevin O'Dwyer hopes to sail with Fr. Albert Cooney from San Francisco on the ‘General Gordon’ for the same destination.
The following will be going to Hong Kong in August : Frs. Joseph Mallin and Merritt, Messrs. James Kelly, McGaley, Michael McLoughlin and Geoffrey Murphy.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1989

Obituary

Father Gerard Casey SJ

Fr Gerry Casey SJ, another who gave his whole life to Hong Kong as a school-teacher, spent the year 1947-48 on the staff of Belvedere, marking time after ordination before going out to the mission. He died there on 3rd February 1989, at the age of 83.

Casey, John, 1873-1954, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/91
  • Person
  • 20 November 1873-5 June 1954

Born: 20 November 1873, London, England / Labasheeda, County Clare
Entered: 6 September 1890, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 30 July 1905, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 2 February 1910, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 5 June 1954, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly

by 1900 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1901 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 29th Year No 4 1954

Obituary :
Father John Casey
Father John Casey was born in London in 1873, son of the late Patrick Casey, merchant, formerly of Labasheeda, Co. Clare. He was educated in Mungret College and entered the Society at Tullabeg in 1890. After two years' Juniorate in Milltown Park, he studied philosophy at Louvain and Stonyhurst. A gifted mathematician, he taught for six years at the Crescent, Limerick, and at Clongowes before going to Theology at Milltown Park, where he was ordained priest in 1905.
The following year he began his long association with Mungret College, where, from 1906 to 1919, and again from 1927 to 1933, he held appointments as prefect of studies and professor of mathematics and physics. He performed the same duties during the years 1921 to 1926 at St. Ignatius' College, Galway.
In 1933, Father Casey was transferred to Tullabeg, where he taught the philosophers mathematics and teaching methods to within a few years of his death, and was besides Spiritual Father to the Community.
To write an adequate obituary notice of a man who spent over 60. years in the Society, seems at first sight a well nigh impossible task, for almost inevitably the writer belongs to the older generation that knew him best in his prime or to the younger generation that knew him only in his later and declining years.
As one belonging to the former category, I shall try to give an appreciation of Father Casey's earlier years in the Society and supplement it by an account written for his Golden Jubilee by one who knew him, after his ordination, during his long teaching career in the colleges, and conclude with some extracts from the younger generation who knew him well past middle age or, perhaps, only in the sere and yellow leaf.
Those who were boys at Clongowes during the closing years of the last century or the opening years of the present one can call to mind a very unique set of scholastics who helped to mould their spiritual, intellectual and physical outlook on life. But among them all there was none for whom they entertained such a combined hero-worship and holy fear as Mister Casey, the powerful Clareman from Labasheeda.
Spiritually, they knew him or rather took him for granted for what he was : a holy man without any of the external trappings that are so frequently associated with the pedestal. Prayers before and after class, the Angelus at 12, but no “holy talk” in between.
Intellectually, he was par excellence the teacher of Euclid (as it was called in those days) which one was expected to demonstrate intelligibly on the blackboard or be sent for “twice nine” in default. Nor would it suffice to repeat a proposition “by heart”, as one unhappy victim tried to do until he was bidden to change the letters ABC to XYZ, with the result that he was reduced to impotent silence and found himself sentenced forthwith to the inevitable penalty.
Physically, he was the hero of playday walks, who always took a bee-line course, no matter what obstacles were in the way, and expected every boy to follow the leader at the risk of perishing in the attempt, 'or else be left shame-facedly behind nursing his wounds.
Not much of the “delicate” man was apparent in those days, and yet some years after his ordination he had to undergo an emergency operation, his life for a time had been in grave danger, and he survived only to become a comparative valetudinarian. But his spirit was not broken, nor his power of hard work, and he continued for over thirty years teaching mathematics, perhaps the first “Magister Perpetuus” in the Colleges.
Let another old pupil of Father Casey's give his impressions of him when, after his ordination, he fulfilled the dual function of Prefect of Studies and Professor of Mathematics for so many years :
“Looking back over a lapse of more than thirty years, one can see as clearly now as then how he dominated (it is the only word) the scene of activity in class or study hall. Other memories there are, indeed, of masters and boys and affairs, but it.can be safely said that of all who passed through Mungret at that time, there is no one who cannot conjure up at a moment's notice the vision of Father Casey striding swiftly along the stone corridor or appearing as Prefect of Studies at the head of a classroom without seeming, somehow, to, have come in by the door. And what a change was there when he did come! In the most restless gathering ensued a silence which could be heard, the hardiest spirit was reduced to his lowest dimension, and any vulgar fraction of humanity who might have incontinently strayed into a Mungret classroom instantly became a minus quantity.
Many of Father Casey's pupils who have since been called upon themselves to exercise authority of one kind or another, must have wondered enviously how he did it. For he used the physical and adventitious aids to pedagogy rather less than most Prefects of his time. Yet somehow he conveyed by a manner which, if we had had the wit to realise it, must have been sustained by a continuous effort, that if affairs did not progress with the speed and exactitude of a proposition in Euclid, and in the manner he indicated with precision, that then the sky would fall or the end of the world would come, or some dreadful Nemesis of the kind would await the unfortunate who lagged upon the road. ....
I doubt if Mungret has ever had or will ever have a greater teacher of Mathematics than Father John Casey. It is one thing to be a great mathematician and another thing to be a great teacher of mathematics; the combination of the two, as in Father Casey's case, must be very rare indeed. Without pretending to know much about it, it has always seemed to the writer that an expert in any subject was usually a poor teacher at least to elementary students. He knows so much that it is difficult for him to realise how little his pupils know, and it must be heart-breaking to find that there are some to whom the very rudiments of his science are inexplicable. At all events, Father Casey was the best mathematician and the best teacher we ever knew. Here again the achievement was psychological rather than physical ; we got a certain amount of work to do, carefully explained and well within our capabilities; it was conveyed to us as a first axiom that that work had to be done ; the question of trying to dodge it simply never entered our heads ; ergo the work was done and we passed our exams. One could almost hear Father Casey saying Q.E.D. when we got the results.
The greatest achievement of a master, however, is not to be found by measuring the results of examinations ; it is in the amount of respect he earns from his pupils. Father Casey carried away with him not only our profound respect as a teacher but our enduring affection as a man. For if boys recognise weakness and trade upon it, they also know strength and understand the proper and unerring use of it. We know that here was a man who had been given certain work to do and intended to do it for that reason alone....”

To conclude this brief obituary, over to you, Younger Generation :
“Father John Casey died peacefully on June 5th, at the age of 80. During most of his life he had to struggle against ill health. In his last years he was completely blind and so feeble that he had to be assisted to stand. But these infirmities of the body did not subdue his great and courageous spirit. He remained until the end as clear and fresh in mind as those thirty years his junior. His interest in and grasp of events both in the Province and the world in general remained undiminished. Always affable and gay, he was ready at recreation to join in any topic of conversation and the width of his interests was remarkable. Only three days before his death he was expounding the merits of Milton's ‘Samson Agonistes’. It is not surprising that this poem on blindness by a blind man should have made a special impression on him. When, however, Father Casey referred to his own affliction, there was never a trace of self pity. When he did mention it, which was rarely, it was always to note its humorous side.
Three years before his death he asked the Community of Tullabeg to join with him in a Novena that God might spare his eyesight sufficiently to continue to say Mass. But God required what must have been for him the supreme sacrifice. Father Casey quietly accepted. The memory of the calm face of the blind man assisting at Mass each morning will remain always with those who witnessed it.
Father Casey was too reserved and unassuming to wish us to catalogue his virtues. His spiritual children will always cherish his unfailing sympathy and sage and balanced counsel. In fourteen years of closest companionship the writer of these lines never heard him speak an unkind word. May his meek and gentle soul find rest and light at last in the Vision of God”.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John Casey 1873-1954
The name of Fr John Casey is remembered well and with affection and respect by many generations of pupils in our Colleges, especially Mungret, where he spent many years of his life. Born in London in 1873, and raised in County Clare, his life was no bed of silk.

He underwent a severe operation shortly after ordination which rendered him a veritable invalid all his life. In spite of his bad health, he gave a long life of valuable service to the Society, as teacher, Prefect of Studies, and Spiritual Father. For this last office he had a special aptitude – a clear judgement, an insight into character and a high standard of religious observance. A rector of Tullabeg once said, that as long as Fr Casey was Spiritual Father, he himself had no anxiety about the spiritual condition of the Philosophers.

For the last three years of his life he was totally blind and could not say Mass. This cross, as well as his long life of ill health he accepted cheerfully, as from the Hand of God. Fidelity to duty, thoroughness in work, courtesy to others, these qualities sum up the man.

He died on June 5th 1954 a model in many ways to succeeding generations of Jesuits.

◆ Mungret Annual, 1941

Jubilee

Father John Casey SJ

Its is now just thirty-three years as time has flown - the month of September of the year 1908 to be precise - since the writer entered Mungret for a term of five years. During a great part of these years Father John Casey was at Mungret - either in the capacity of Mathematics Master or as Prefect of Studies. Looking back now over that gap of time, one can see as clearly now as then, how he dominated - it is the only word - the scene of activity in class or study hall, Other memories there are in deed - of masters and boys and affairs - but it can be safely said that of all who passed through Mungret at that time, there is no one who cannot conjure up at a moment's notice the vision of Father Casey striding swiftly along the stone corridor or appearing as Prefect of Studies at the head of a classroom without seeming somehow to have come in by the door. And what a change was there when he did come! In the most restless gathering ensued a silence which could be heard, the hardiest spirit was reduced to his lowest dimension and any vulgar fraction of humanity who might have incontinently strayed in to a Mungret classroom instantly became a minus quantity. Looking back on one's own limitations of these days, one is almost tempted to call it the triumph of mind over matter; but it was not merely a victory in the age-long psychological struggle between master and pupil - it was a rout, utter and absolute.

Many of Father Casey's pupils, who have since been called upon themselves to exercise authority of one kind or another, must have wondered enviously how he did it. For he used the physical and adventitious aids to pedagogy rather less than most Prefects of his time. Yet somehow he conveyed by a manner which; if we had had the wit to realise it, must have been sustained by a continuous effort, that if affairs did not progress with the speed and exactitude of a proposition in Euclid, and in the manner he indicated with precision, that then the sky would fall, or the end of the world would come, or some dreadful Nemesis of the kind would await the unfortunate who lagged upon the road. And of course some inevitably lagged and of course the Nemesis did not come to them even in the measure they deserved, but the illusion persevered and the triumph persisted. It is only with the passing of the years that the realisation comes that here was genius in one of its most unusual and most remark able manifestations.

Once only in my time at Mungret did I see the alter ego breaking through the ego while he was at his own particular work. Be it said parenthetically that when we were out of class or study it broke through continually in the little we then saw of him. But this was a special occasion-he had had to go away for an emergency operation, his life for a time had been in grave danger, and we had not seen him for many weeks and did not know when he would come back. Then one night when, with an indulgent apostolic prefect in the chair, we were in study and studying many books not to be found in the curriculum, my next door neighbour breathlessly whispered the time-honoured formula of the approach of authority. It seemed incredible but I saw a dark shadow appear from the back of the study, stop at every line of desks, collecting various periodicals, while those in front of the line were quite oblivious of anything unusual. It was a scene of the utmost drama while it lasted and ended when, laden with books and papers collected en route, Father Casey turned round at the top to a thoroughly demoralised study hall, smiled broadly and announced “Cæsar has returned to his armies”.

I doubt if Mungret has ever had or will have a greater teacher of Mathematics than Father John Casey. It is one thing to be a great mathematician and another thing to be a great teacher--the combination of the two as in Father Casey's case, must be very rare indeed. Without pretending to know much about it, it has always seemed to the writer that an expert in any subject was usually a poor teacher at least to elementary students. He knows so much that it is difficult for him to realise how little his pupils know and it must be heart-breaking to find that there are some to whom the very rudiments of his science are inexplic able. Probably that is where method comes in. At all events Father John Casey was the best mathematician and the best teacher we ever knew. I write as one to whom the subject was always a great trouble and who would never have passed through the Intermediate without the assistance I got in Father Casey's class. Here again the achievement was psychological rather than physical ; we got a certain amount of work to do, carefully explained and well within our capabilities, it was conveyed to us as a first axiom that that work had to be done; the question of trying to dodge it simply never entered our heads; ergo the work was done and we passed our exams, perhaps not at the top, but certainly not at the bottom. One could almost hear Father Casey saying “QED” when he got the results.

The greatest achievement of a master however is not to be found by measuring the results of examinations - it is in the amount of respect he earns from his pupils. Boys are unerring in sizing up values in those who are placed over them - no psychoanalyst ever found the weak spots with greater certitude or more uncanny comprehension. What in another may be merely an amiable foible is turned to ill account so that it becomes overnight a serious difficulty to a teacher's success. The old Nannies belief that boys of a certain age are “limbs” of diabolical origin, is made manifest to the poor man's serious discomfort. We tried all these arts on Father John Casey but we never found the weak spot. He carried away with him not only our profound respect as a teacher but our enduring affection as a man. For if boys recognise weakness and trade upon it, they also know strength and understand the proper and unerting use of it. We knew as well as if it had been put into words for us that here was a man who had been given certain work to do and intended to do it if for that reason alone; we knew that outside that work no one in Mungret wished us more fun or amusement ; indeed we sus pected that if we scored one up on the Prefect of Discipline outside class and study hours there was a dignified and gentle chuckle from the Prefect of Studies. Father Eddie Bourke SJ, may remember a day when as a boy in 2nd Club he threw a laundry bag through the dormitory window so that it landed in front of Father Casey in the chapel quadrangle. When faces, poked out of the window, were horrified at this catastrophe, Father John gaily and accurately threw the bag up again remarking: “A bolt from the blue” - and went on reading his office. Various illnesses and short-sightedness prevented him from taking much part in our games. Yet whenever nowadays one meets a Mungret boy of the 1908 vintage the first question is “Where is Father Casey now?”

The last place I saw him was sitting on a bench at Lisdoonvarna enjoying a short holiday. He still teaches mathematics he told me - but nowadays to Jesuit scholastics and not to “the likes of us”. Anyway he has passed through all the burden of the day and the heats, and finds himself in the quiet of the evening time. That its peace may long endure as it does when the sun sets on the Shannon over his native Labasheeda, and that his prayer may help them on the more difficult tasks that now engage them as his instruction and example did long ago, will be the wish of all who passed through Mungret in his time, wherever these lines may find them.

DFG

-oOo-

We offer our heartiest congratulations to Father John Casey SJ (1888-'90) on the occasion of his Golden Jubilee as a member of the Society of Jesus, which fell due last September. Father Casey's name is a household word amongst many generations of past Mungret boys, who, we are certain, will revive their impressions of their school-days, when they read on another page the appreciation of their former Prefect of Studies by a distinguished past pupil of Father Casey, District Justice Gleeson (1908-13). Mungret sends her sincere good wishes ad multos annos to Father Casey, whose name is written in indelible characters in the annals of the college.

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1955

Obituary

Father John Casey SJ

The death of Fr Casey on June 5th meant the breaking of a link with the past for many old Mungret men. What memories his death evoked, the vision of a figure striding along the corridor or appearing in a classroom to be followed by a hushed silence. Strict yet kind, he had many friends among the Past who will mourn his passing.

He was born in London the son of a Clareman, in 1873. He was educated in Mungret College, and entered the Society in Tullabeg in 1890. After two years juniorate in Milltown Park, he studied Philosophy at Louvain and Stonyhurst.

He taught for six years at the Crescent and Clongowes before going to Theology at Milltown Park, where he was ordained in 1905. The following year he began his long association with Mungret College where from 1906 to 1919, and again from 1927 to 1933 he held appointments as prefect of studies and professor of mathematics and physics. The following is a testimony of one who was taught by him

“I doubt if Mungret has ever had or will ever have a greater teacher of Mathematics than Fr John Casey. It is one thing to be a great mathematician and another thing to be a great teacher of mathematics : the combination of the two as in Fr Casey's case must be very rare indeed. Without pretending to know much about it, it has always seemed to the writer that an expert in any subject was usually a poor teacher at least to elemertary students. At all events Fr Casey was the best mathematician and the best teacher we ever knew. Here again the achievement was psychological rather than physical; we got a certain amount of work to do, carefully explained and well within our capabilities; it was conveyed to us as a first axiom that that work had to be done ; the question of trying to dodge it never entered our heads; ergo the work was done and we passed our exams.

The greatest achievement of a master, however, is not to be found by measuring the results of examinations; it is in the amount of respect he earns from his pupils. Fr Casey carried away with him not only our profound respect as a teacher but our enduring affection as a man”.

In 1933 Fr. Casey was transferred to Tullabeg where he taught the philosophers mathematics and teaching methods to within a few years of his death, and was besides, Spiritual Father to the community. In his last years he was completely blind and so feeble that he had to be assisted to stand. But these infirmities of body did not subdue his great and courageous spirit. One who lived with him for fourteen years re marked that he never heard him speak an unkind word. May his meek and gentle soul find rest and light at last in the vision of God.

Cassidy, Bernard, 1714-1788, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1034
  • Person
  • 29 September 1714-11 June 1788

Born: 29 September 1714, Ireland
Entered: 07 September 1735, Watten, Belgium - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 24 March 1742
Final Vows: 02 February 1753
Died: 11 June 1788, Thame Park, Oxfordshire, England - Angliae Province (ANG)

Alias Stafford

1768 was at Wackworth, Banbury, England (poss Warkworth)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Cassidy alias Stafford (Uncertainty about his real name, the Provincial’s Note-book says vere Stafford, and the 1754 Catalogue says vere Cassidy)
Educated at St Omer before Ent
1746 On the London Mission
1758 On the Mission of Oxburgh, Norfolk
1771 Superior of St Mary’s Residence, Oxford (cf Foley’s Collectanea)
1779 On the Dorchester Mission, near Oxford
On his tombstone “IHS, Bernard Stafford, died July 12th, 1788, aged 76” (Reverend TG Lee, DCL, FSA) and a copy of that inscription on the floor of the chapel at Thame Park. As it is most improbable that he would have been buried under his assumed name, this monumental inscription may be taken as convincing evidence that his real name was Stafford. In the brief notice of Warkworth, Northampton, which formerly belonged to the Holman family, and then passed by an heiress to the Eyres of Derbyshire, it is stated that the only Father of the Society that could be traced there was father Bernard Stafford alias or vere Cassidy, who was residing at Warkworth 1764, and subsequent years, finally at Thame Park, where he died June 11 1788. It is further stated that Mr Holman, the Squire of Warkworth, married the Lady Anastasia Stafford, probably a sister or near relative of Father Stafford. The family connection may have been a reason for Lady Holman’s retaining Father Bernard as Chaplain.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
STAFFORD, BERNARD, (his true name was Cassidy) : he was born in Ireland during the month of December, 1713. At the age of 22 he entered the Novitiate at Watten : and was admitted to the Profession of the Four Vows in London in 1753. For some time he resided at Thame Park, where he died on the 11th of June, 1788. His services on the Mission well deserve remembrance and imitation.

Clancy, Daniel, 1836-1895, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1046
  • Person
  • 14 January 1836-06 September 1895

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.

Claven, Patrick, 1846-1885, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1053
  • Person
  • 28 October 1846-21 July 1885

Born: 28 October 1846, Killina, Rahan, County Offaly
Entered: 18 August 1875, Sault-au-Rècollet, Canada - Neo-Eboracensis-Canadensis Province (NEBCAN)
Ordained: 1881 Leuven, Belgium
Died: 20 July 1885, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly - Marylandiae Neo-Eboracensis Province (MARNEB)

Originally joined the New York / Canada Province, but belonged to New York, and was then assimilated into the Maryland / New York Province of 1880.

Ordained in 1881 and sent to St Joseph’s Church in Philadelphia.
1884-1885 Sent to Roehampton (ANG) for Tertianship, he became ill and came to Tullabeg, where he died 20 July 1885.

Cleary, James, 1841-1921, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/93
  • Person
  • 10 May 1841-22 August 1921

Born: 10 May 1841, County Waterford
Entered: 07 September 1866, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1870
Final vows: 02 February 1878
Died: 22 August 1921, St Aloysius, Sevenhill, Adelaide, Australia

by 1869 at Amiens, France (CAMP) studying
by 1870 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1872 at Glasgow, Scotland (ANG) working
by 1877 at Castres, France (TOLO) making Tertianship
Early Irish Mission to Australia 1884

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He entered from Maynooth where he had already been ordained Deacon.

After Ordination he spent some time at an Operarius, was briefly at Crescent, and for over six years a Catechist on the Missionary Staff.
1883 he was sent to Australia and there he spent some years in Melbourne and Sydney. He was also an Operarius at Hawthorn.
1895 He was at St Patrick’s Melbourne
1901 He was sent to St Aloysius, Sydney.
1902 He was sent to Norwood
1903 He was sent to Adelaide
1905 He was sent to Riverview.
1907 He was sent to Sevenhill
1908-1914 He was sent to Norwood again.
1914 He returned to Sevenhill and he died there 22 August 1921.

◆ 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 as a Diocesan Priest having previously studied at Maynooth.

1868-1869 He was sent to St Acheul, Amiens, France for Rhetoric studies
1869-1870 He was sent to Leuven for theology
1870-1871 He was sent teaching to Clongowes Wood College
1871-1876 He went to Glasgow to work in a Parish there.
1876-1877 He made tertianship at Castres, France
1878-1882 He was a Missioner giving Retreats all over the country
1882-1885 He was sent teaching to Crescent College Limerick.
1885-1886 He was sent to Australia and Xavier College Kew
1886-1890 and 1900-1902 He was at St Aloysius Bourke Street teaching
1890-1891 He was sent for Parish work to Hawthorn
1891-1894 He was sent for Parish work to St Mary’s
1894-1895 He was sent for Parish work to Richmond
1895-1900 He was sent teaching to St Patrick’s College Melbourne
1904-1906 He was sent teaching to St Ignatius College Riverview
1903-1904 and 1907-1916 he was at St Ignatius Parish Norwood.
1913-1921 He was sent to do Parish work at Sevenhill

He seems to have been a little unsettled. moving frequently, and in later life was much troubled by scruples.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father James Cleary (1841-1921)

A native of Waterford, entered the Society in 1866. He was a member of the church staff at the Crescent from 1882 to 1885. This latter year he joined the mission in Australia where he was engaged first as master but later and for many years in church work until the time of his death at Sevenhills.

Colgan, John, 1846-1919, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/578
  • Person
  • 08 November 1846-26 June 1919

Born: 08 November 1846, Kilcock, County Kildare
Entered: 12 November 1867, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1883
Final Vows: 02 February 1886
Died: 26 June 1919, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

Brother of James - RIP 1913

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1870 at Amiens, France (CAMP) studying
by 1871 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) Studying
by 1882 at St Beuno’s, Wales (ANG) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
After Noviceship he studied Philosophy in Europe, was Prefect for a long time at Clongowes for Regency, and then did Theology at St Beuno’s.
After Ordination he was appointed Socius to the Novice Master at Dromore, eventually becoming Master himself.
1888 Dromore Novitiate was closed and he took the Novices to Tullabeg.
1890 His health had begun to suffer so he was sent to Clongowes as Spiritual Father, and did this for a number of years.
He was next sent as Minister to Milltown for a couple of years, but again returned to Clongowes in the same capacity as before.
1901 He was sent to Gardiner St. He was always in compromised health and had a very weak voice, but worked away there for a number of years.
In the end he had a very long illness which he bore with great patience and he died at Gardiner St 26 June 1919. His funeral was held there, very simply, as it was difficult to get a choir together at that time.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Made his first Vows at St Acheul, France 13 November 1869

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John Colgan 1846-1919
Fr John Colgan was born at Kilcock County Kildare on November 8th 1846.

At the end of his theological studies he was appointed Socius to the Master of Novices at Dromore, eventually becoming Master of Novices himself. In 1888 Dromore was closed and he took the novices to Tullabeg.. His health broke down and in 1890 he went to Clongowes as Spiritual Father. In 1901 he was posted to Gardiner Street.

He was never of robust health and he laboured according to his strength for a number of years. His last illness, which was long, he bore with great patience until his death on June 28th 1919. His funeral took place after Low Mass, as it was impossible to get together a choir of priests. His funeral was very simple, as every Jesuit’s should be.

◆ The Clongownian, 1920

Obituary

Father John Colgan SJ

John Colgan passed quietly away at St Francis Xavier's Presbytery, Gardiner Street, on June 19th last year. He was in Clongowes from 1860-67, where his brothers James and Edward, who both predeceased him, were also students. Fr Colgan spent most of his earlier life as a Prefect in Clongowes, Externally cold and formal, he was in private a most kind-hearted and even indulgent man. His Theological studies over, he was sent as Socius to the Master of Novices at Dromore, county Down. He subsequently became Master of Novices himself, and it was he who took the Novices to Tullabeg after that college had been amalgamated with Clongowes. Not long after, his health breaking down, he came to Clongowes as Spiritual Father, at which post - excepting a short interval as Minister at Milltown Park - he remained until 1901. The remainder of his life was spent in works of the ministry at St Francis Xavier's, Dublin, where he rarely left the precincts of the Presbytery except for an occasional short walk. His interest in and kindly disposition towards visitors helped not a little the success of his sacredotal functions. To his sister we tender the sympathy of many generations who knew Fr Colgan.

Comerford, George, 1598-1629, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1074
  • Person
  • 23 April 1598-14 August 1629

Born: 23 April 1598, County Waterford
Entered: 24 August 1618, Mechelen, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: c 1624
Died: 14 August 1629, Waterford Residence

Parents : Philip C Comerford and Anne Goeghe or Joeghe or Gough?
Fellow novice of St Jan Berchmans
Studied Humanities in Ireland and Philosophy at Douai
1622 in Flanders Province
1626 Catalogue In Ireland (Comerfortius)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Two Entries
Son of Peter Philip Comerford and Ann née Geoghe
Studied Humanities at various places in Ireland for five years and then Philosophy at Douai under the Jesuits at Aachen
1626 In Ireland
Admitted to the Society by Charles Scribano at Courtray (Kortrijk) 19 July 1618 and then began his Noviceship at Mechelen 24 August 1618 (”Mechlin Album” Vol I p449, Burgundian Library, Brussels)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Philip and Anne née Geoghe
Studied Humanities and Philosophy under the Jesuits at Douai before Ent 24 August 1618 Mechelen
After First Vows sent to Louvain to complete his studies.
1621 He received Minor Orders 04 June 1621, but the date and place of Ordination are unknown (probably c 1624)
1624 Returned to Ireland but in poor health and was at the Waterford Residence until his death in August 1629

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

Died by drowning during a rescue attempt.

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.

◆ The Xaverian, Xavier College, Melbourne, Australia, 1933

Obituary

Father Felix Conlon SJ

An Old Boy, Prefect, and Master of Rivei view. Seven years rowing master at Xavier, including 1927 and 1928, the occasions of Xaviers' winning the Head of the River; classical master Xavier. Posthumously decorated by the Surf Life Saving Association.

During the last Christmas holidays we were glad to learn that Father Felix Conlon, who had left us in July to teach at the noviciate in Sydney, was returning to Xavier; but our joy was quickly changed io grief by the sad news of his death. At Avoca, near Gosford, NSW, Father Conlon, in a gallant attempt to save a boy from drowning, sacrificed his life, and so left us the pain of parting froin a very old friend and helper. Yet. our sorrow is not unmingled with pride and gladness, for though Father Conlon died, his death was the death of a martyr of charity meriting for him the highest praise that has ever been uttered by the lips of Truth itself: “Great love than this no man hath than that he lay down his life for his friend’. We indeed rejoice that one by so many and such dear ties ours has won so high a meed of glory, but yet we feel that rather than merely laud we ought to imitate him, for the memory of all worthy merit is left us chiefly that we may learn from them how to live nobly and to die nobly. To live nobly, and to die nobly, these words have not been coined by mere chance, for it is a truth as profound as it is well work that “as a man lives so shall he die”. This salutary teaching is most amply attested by Father Conlon's whole career, for not only did he die a martyr of charity, but what is at least as important, he lived its confessor, But what is charity, or, as it ought to be called love of God and one's neighbour? “You are my friends if you do the things which I command you” Christ tells us with his own unmistaken authority. Charity. Then, is not to be tested by words or feelings, but by service to the loved one. If we review the life of Father Conlon it is just this service and devotion to others which we see ennob ling and beautifying his actions from the first to the very last. At Riverview, as a boy, he showed this sincere love of his school by his fidelity to her in all she asked of him. To his studies he applied himself with such ardour that, though almost certainly not the most gifted of his conrades, he thrice headed his form. In games the same fidelity and sense of duty characterised him. In cricket, where evidently he was not so naturally talented, he made supply the deficiencies of nature by arts and what a writer of his time calls ultra-carefulness he gave his best; for he was not one who gives only when the giving is easy. In football his inborn dash and trained deteritination and in rowing his strength and skill were placed unstintedly at the service of his “Alma Mater”. Thus in youth by a wholehearted devotion did he show practical, that is, true, Jove of his school. Nor did the child fail to be the father of the man. All the many labours of his more mature years were marked by the same care and thoroughness. As before his work lay in many fields, whether as a teacher of classics, French, and history, or as rowing master and coach and as division prefect at Riverview, he used all that nature and art could afford him for the most perfect service he could render. There are many witnesses to this. His exercises were corrected and annotated with exquisite care, which must have edified the boys under him, as it certainly has at least one master who has succeeded to some of his classes; his old class-books are filled with laborious additions to their matter culled from a great number of sources and arguing the most scrupulous research. His sermons were notable for the strict care given to their preparation, and are only one more proof that their author left nothing to chance inspiration of the moment. Moreover, and here we touch on Father Conlon's most tangible and charming trait, he gave himself in all he did with a cheerfulness which God Himself declares He cherishes most particularly, for “the Lord loveth a cheerful giver”. Felix by name and “felix” by nature, as one who long knew him has declared, Father Conlon gave all his gifts with a smile which by no means belied his inner warmth and sincerity. He gave himself to all, for it is remarkable to recall with what art he adapted himself to the most diverse types of nature. Indeed, not only did he make no enemies, but he made all his friends. Further, he gave himself always and with the same bon homie. The burden of life must have lain hard on him as on all, but his good humour and cheerfulness hid from his neighbours any signs that might have rendered their own troubles harder by the sight of his. It is then little wonder that God, his Master, whom he so faith fully served, chose so holy and heroic a crown for his life as the glorious death which he died. May his gentle, faithfui, and brave soul rest in peace, and let us accord Father Conlon, our old friend and helper, not the weak honour of faltering words, but the same faithful and cheerful service of God and man, the highest of all praise, whole-hearted imitation.

A H R

◆ Our Alma Mater, St Ignatius Riverview, Sydney, Australia, 1933

Obituary

Father Felix Conlon

It is my sad privilege to voice the thought of Riverview mourning the loss of one of its most lovable children. To refer thus to him is but to speak the truth; for: as a boy and as a priest Felix Conlon radiated the lovableness begotten of the simplicity of a child. There was no violent change, no reversal of principles, no complete remoulding of character as the bright lad of Rudiments A developed into the Jesuit priest of later years. The seed but fructified and grew and brought forth its flower; and the fruit that was plucked before the time of full maturity had in its charm nothing that was not al ways there. One saw in the man and the priest just those features which were conspicuous in him as a boy; for his character was perfected, not changed, by grace.

The large dark eye that used to gleam at our old master's (Fr Michael Garahy SJ) paroxysms of humour to the end never missed the whimsical and the laughable. As a boy the all-unconscious candour and singleness of purpose that marked him out and made him friends of all, drew others to him as a man - and they revered him. His character sunny, rather than boisterously good humoured, - placid is perhaps the word that describes it best - made his school-fellows his chums, and his associates in later life his friends. Uncongenial work lost its irksomeness if it were a duty; for his whole mind was centred on it. To help another, to him was second nature, and he never stopped to weigh the cost - and thus he died, facing danger without flinching when a stranger was in need of aid. “Greater love than this....”

For three years we were together in Riverview ('00-'03), he leading his class and shining most in classics. Two different types, we were ever friends and shared the fun of schoolboy life and all its minor troubles. We bandied words on the respective worth of the Avon of New Zealand and of his northern Clarence River; we risked a furtive whisper in the study hall at night; we were much in each other's company - just schoolboy friends, neither ever letting other know the secret that he cherished of one day being a priest. It was thus a surprise, though not wholly unexpected, when one morning three years later he arrived at the Jesuit novitiate (then in Ireland) when I was just about to leave it. His father brought him, and that good man's gratitude at having amongst his children one chosen by the Master for His service, was mingled with sorrow at the parting.

The time of probation ended, Felix took his vows and in the two years prior to philosophy won high results in Greek and Latin, thus laying the foundation for the work that was later to be his as a teacher in Xavier. His philosophy was done in Gemert, thus giv ing him the valuable asset of a foreign language, spoken well and fluently. During these years we saw little of each other, but were to meet again in Australia. Prior to ordination we were not stationed in the same college, but we regularly corresponded. His teaching period was done in Xavier where he was a valuable member of the staff. From there he returned to Ireland for theology.

It was after ordination that we came more into contact with each other; and I learned the better to appreciate the quiet, serious, good humoured, spiritually minded friend ever ready to put his best effort into the various works that were assigned him. Thus as a priest at Xavier his gentleness attracted to him those in trouble; his pleasant humour and imperturbable patience made him an efficient teacher and one able unconsciously to impart to others the culture that was his; his old schoolboy love of sport was used to advantage, for it was under his leadership as Rowing Master that Xavier first showed its prowess on the water, and for a second time in succession captured the coveted title of Head of the River.

But he was wanted elsewhere. The Society of Jesus choses for the post of “Socius to the Master of Novices” only one who by his sterling character and charm of manner can be relied upon to round off in external matters the spiritual training of the novices. And so he was transferred to Loyola, to Xavier's loss and Loyola's gain. And now after just one year of work amongst those who themselves are to be the workers in the Master's vineyard, he has suddenly and tragically left us. He went, speeding on an errand of selfless kindness, when shark infested waters and treacherous currents imperilled another's life. For his friends who miss him is there not comfort in the Master's words Who called him: “As long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me”?

H B Loughnan SJ

-oOo-

Father Conlon was granted, posthumously, by The Surf Life Saving Association of Australia their highest award, the Meritorious Award in Silver. The follow ing is the report of the Association :

Avoca Beach (N.S.W.), 19th January, 1933
Sydney Lambert and George Payne were swept from the rocks during a heavy sea, and both were in extreme danger. Fortunately Payne was washed back and was able to go for assistance. A box-line was brought to the spot, and after a number of attempts Lambert managed to grasp a life-belt that was thrown to him. Owing to the heavy surf breaking on the rocks it was impossible to pull him in, so it was decided to draw him along until he could be landed on the beach

This operation proved extremely dangerous. The line frequently became entangled in the rocks, and had to be freed at the water's edge where the waves were breaking heavily. The line was freed by Stanley Pickett of Avoca, and Father Louis Loughnan, Rector of Riverview College. Both suffered badly through being cut about during their efforts by the jagged rocks, and Father Loughnan was forced, as a result, to spend some weeks in hospital.

While these activities were in progress, news of the trouble reached the guest house, “Sea Spray," where Mr J D Miller, a member of the Avoca Club, and who received the Bronze Medal of the Association last year for a brilliant rescue, was in bed resting a bad leg.

Undeterred by his incapacity, Mr Miller volunteered to take a boat out through the surf. In this dangerous undertaking Father Felix Conlon and Mr Bernard O'Brien were ready to join. They succeeded in launching the boat, but before getting clear of the surf it was capsized and the occupants were precipitated into the water. All were fully clothed. Mr Miller secured lifebelts that were stowed in the nose of the boat and gave one each to his companions. It is difficult to ascertain exactly what happened after this. Mr Miller decided to swim for the shore and asked the others to follow him. Father Conlon disappeared and was not seen again. Mr O'Brien remained with the capsized boat, which was carried by the current along the beach. Mr O'Brien was washed from the boat by a large wave, but fortunately, when exhausted, he was rescued by C Ives of the Avoca Life-Saving Club, who, with R Pickett, another member, arrived with a reel at a critical time.

In the meantime, Lambert was brought safely to shore, and eye-witnesses stated that “There was no doubt that his rescue was due to the efforts of Stanley Pickett and Father Loughnan”.

AWARDS: Meritorious Award in Silver, posthumously to the late Father Felix Conlon, Certificate of Merit to Father Louis Loughnan, Stanley Pickett, Bernard O'Brien, J D Miller.

Connell, Dominic, 1866-1933, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1087
  • Person
  • 10 December 1866-22 August 1933

Born: 10 December 1866, Romsey, Victoria, Australia
Entered: 18 March 1887, Xavier Melbourne, Australia
Ordained: 1902
Professed: 15 August 1905
Died: 22 August 1933, Manresa, Hawthorn, Melbourne, Australia - Australiae province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1897 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1904 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1905 returned to Australia

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
Younger brother of Frank - RIP 1951.

His early education was at St Patrick’s College Melbourne, and then he Entered the Society at Xavier College under Luigi Sturzo.

1889-1891 After First Vows he was sent to St Aloysius College Bourke Street, where he taught Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry
1891-1896 He was sent to Xavier College Kew to be a Teacher and Prefect
1896-1899 he was sent to Leuven Belgium for Philosophy
1899-1903 He was sent to Milltown Park Dublin for Theology.
1904-1913 He returned to Australia and Xavier College
1913-1915 He was sent to St Ignatius College Riverview.
1915-1916 He was sent teaching at St Aloysius College Sydney
1916-1922 He was sent mid year to Manresa Norwood to replace Henry Cock. This resulted in a major drama when the Rector of St Aloysius, Patrick McCurtin, resigned in protest, claiming that Dominic was his only good Jesuit teacher. Meanwhile he was appointed Superior and Parish Priest at Norwood. During this time he was also a Consultor of the Mission.
1922-1929 He was then sent to St Mary’s, Miller Street
1929 He spent his final years at the Hawthorn Parish, when his health was poor.

He was a man of untiring zeal, who had very robust health in St Mary’s, but this disappeared in later times.

Note from Patrick McCurtin Entry
The question of poor teaching staff at St Aloysius' College led to the dramatic resignation of McCurtin as rector in 1916, when the mission superior transferred Dominic Connell, “one of our best masters”, to become parish priest at Norwood, SA. At the time there were very few competent teachers on the staff, and finances were not good, which made the employment of lay teachers difficult. McCurtin believed that the image of the school would suffer.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 1st Year No 2 1926
Residence. SS. CORDIS, SYDNEY :

In 1878 Archbishop Vaughan handed over the Parish of North Shore to the Society. The church was exceedingly small, had very little church furniture and the Fathers were obliged to hire a Presbytery at 16s. a week. The Residence S.S. Cordis completed by Fr D Connell in 1923. The parish now numbers some 3,000 souls. It has two splendid primary schools, with an attendance of about 740 children. These schools. the Brothers' residence and the hall capable of holding 1,000 people, owe their existence to the energy of Fr Corish. In 1924 there were 45,000 Confessions heard, and about 50,000 Communions given. Attached to the church are two Sodalities, a Catholic club, a debating club, an athletic club a tennis club, and a branch of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.

◆ Our Alma Mater, St Ignatius Riverview, Sydney, Australia, 1933

Obituary

Father Dominic Connell

It is with deep sorrow that we record the death of Father Dominic Connell, a former Minister of Riverview. He came to us in 1914 from Xavier College, Kew, after a long period of association with that School. His stay with us was only too short. After twelve months he left us to take charge of the Parish of Norwood, South Australia, and carried away with him the respect of all. In 1922 he was appointed Superior of the Parish of North Sydney, where he worked himself to death in the service of his beloved people. He was a man of untiring zeal. He was in robust health when he went to North Sydney, but in the course of six arduous years he had completely exhausted his physical strength. In August of the present year he was called away to receive his rich reward.

May he rest in peace.

Connell, Francis, 1864-1951, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1088
  • Person
  • 31 March 1864-12 July 1951

Born: 31 March 1864, Melbourne, Australia
Entered: 12 November 1886, Xavier Melbourne, Australia
Ordained: 1900
Professed: 15 August 1902
Died: 12 July 1951, Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1895 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1896 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1901 at Sartirana, Merate, Como, Italy (VEM) making Tertianship
by 1902 returned to Australia

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

His early education was at St Patrick’s College Melbourne, and then he Entered the Society at Xavier College Kew

1888-1889 After First Vows he did his Juniorate at Xavier College
1889--1890 He was sent for a Regency to St Aloysius College Sydney
1890-1892 He continued his regency at St Ignatius College Riverview. Here his singing at the boy’s concerts was popular. He was also Director of Rowing, and in 1891 he welcomed the Governor and his wife Lord and Lady Jersey to a rowing regatta.
1892-1894 He finished his Regency at Xavier College Kew
1894-1897 He was sent to Leuven Belgium and Stonyhurst England for Philosophy.
1897-1900 He was sent to Milltown Park Dublin for Theology
1900-1901 He made Tertianship at Merate Italy
1901-1904 He was sent teaching at Mungret College Limerick.
1904-1905 He was sent to St Aloysius College Sydney as First Prefect.
1906-1914 He was then sent for a long experience of teaching at St Patrick’s College Melbourne, where he was also President of the Men’s Sodality (1906-1912)
1917-1921 He was sent to work at the Norwood Parish, where he was involved with the choir and taught catechism at local schools.
1921-1947 He then began a long association with St Ignatius College Riverview.
1947-1951 He spent his last years praying for the Church and Society at Canisius College Pymble

His reputation among his students was that of a very kind and thoughtful man. He was a gifted linguist in French, German, Spanish and Italian, and a respected teacher in his earlier years. He wrote many poems that appeared in the Riverview “Alma Mater”.

The above said he was also cursed with a strong temper which he never really conquered. The turning point in his life came at the Norwood Parish in 1920. There was a problem which resulted in his being moved to Riverview, where the Rector was instructed to keep a close eye on his correspondence and movements. He took this very badly himself and allowed himself to become embittered against all Superiors, and even against the Society itself. He did not conceal this bitterness, even from the boys at Riverview. This, of course, only strengthened the Superiors in their resolve to monitor him. He remained an unhappy man and was never reconciled with his Superiors.

His final move to Pymble was a happier one and he ended his life in greater peace.

At the time of his death he was the oldest man in the Province.

Corcoran, Timothy, 1872-1943, Jesuit priest

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

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

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

Older brother of John Corcoran - RIP 1940

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1902 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 1st Year No 1 1925

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

Irish Province News 2nd Year No 3 1927

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

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

Irish Province News 8th Year No 4 1933

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

Irish Province News 10th Year No 1 1935

Works by Father Timothy Corcoran SJ

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

Irish Province News 18th Year No 1 1943

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

◆ The Clongownian, 1943

Obituary

Father Timothy Corcoran SJ

Two years ago, 1941, on the occasion of the celebration of his Golden Jubilee in the Society of Jesus, an appreciation of the late Fr Corcoran appeared in the pages of “The Clongownian”, together with a list of his published works. To this we refer those of our readers who may wish to know him in his later, more public and more important sphere of activity. Here we merely give the impressions and recollections of one who was a member of the first Senior Grade Class taught by Fr Corcoran in Clongowes, and who has known himn intimately ever since. But we preface it by a tribute from a distinguished Professor of Education, who was for several years associated with Fr Corcoran as extern examiner in Pedagogics.

Dear Fr Barrett,

Would you be good enough to express to the members of your Society my sorrow at the death of Professor Corcoran and to extend to then my sympathy in the loss the Society of Jesus in particular, and the cause of Education in general, has thereby sustained? I considered it a great privilege to be associated with him in examining the Clongowes Wood candidates for their Certificate.

Yours sincerely,

Robert R Rusk, MA, Professor of Education,
Glasgow.

My acquaintance with the late Fr Corcoran began in 1895, when, after a year or so teaching some elementary class while studying for his own BA degree, he postponed academic honours to begin a full time dedication to what was to be a very remarkable pedagogic, career, He became Master of Rhetoric; and took over from Fr John Keane, then Mr Keane, a Poetry or Middle Grade which had annexed six out of the thirty-six exhibitions awarded to that Grade. There was already in Senior Grade one pupil, Matt Kennedy, and perhaps another, who had been kept back a year in. the hopes of brighter laurels.

Further, John Houlihan had come in from Fermoy where he had already shone in previous tests. So that, all things considered, a great teacher had worthy material to work upon. The class was also strengthened (and dignified) by the presence of two youths, even then distinguished and destined to far higher distinctions in later life - Pierce Kent and Joe Cahill - who were reading for Honours Matriculation and sat in splendid isolation at the back of the room.

Everyone who knew Mr Corcoran, as he then was, or the later Dr Corcoran, will easily understand that he would lay himself out to train his team to the last ounce and would reckon with confidence on proportionate results. Later I was to learn that he made no secret of his high expectations, predicting almost in detail what prizes his various pupils were to win. It was an unfortunate instance of counting the chickens before the shells broke. The great class “flopped” rather badly and had to be content with one exhibition near the tail of the list, some book prizes and retained exhibitions.

I have never been able to explain how the anticlimax came about. True, two of the best of the possible “starters”, Tom Kettle and Peter Byrne, were “scratched” and reserved for the 1897 Derby, in which they led the field and carried off the Blue Riband, as it was then called that is, first place in Senior Grade and the gold medals in English and Classics, with some composition prizes. But the rest, including such outstanding talents as Arthur Clery, failed to run true to form. And thus one of the greatest of all teachers in the history of Irish secondary education began with what looked like a rebuff from fate. Yet, if so, the fault did not lie with him, and the fiasco was to be amply atoned for by the exceptional success which crowned Fr Corcoran's occupation of “the Chair” of Rhetoric-nine years in all.

The fault was not his ; nor, as far as I can recall, was it ours. We not only studied hard but we really “knew our lines”, and why we did not do more credit to our master I have never been able to discover. Years later I was able, in a chance rencontre with the Results List of 1896, to see that, if the later and much better arrangement of Groups had then been in vogue, the Clongowes “string” would have justified the stable and trainer by a quite brilliant performance. Sed disaliter visum. I was later, as successor to Fr Corcoran, to learn that, while examination results followed anticipations very closely as a rule, the most paradoxical and scarcely intelligible surprises would be caused by the Results Book, underlining the warning of “The Biglow Papers”: “Don't never prophesy unless you know”.

Mr Corcoran was also very popular with his class, though personally I felt slightly more regard for Mr Keane and Mr William Byrne, who, though differing much from him and from one another in their methods, inspired a great respect into all reasonably disposed pupils. In later life Fr Corcoran was liable to alternations of mood that led to much misunderstanding. Unless you knew him well and made allowance for this fact, you ran risk of being seriously offended by a manner that at times appeared charged with studied rudeness. He was my friend from our first encounter till his lamented death. His advice, his help, his sympathy, his immense industry, were at my service (as at that of many more) whenever I cared to call upon them. And when the genial mood was upon him, he would drag me off, if needs were, to his room, set me down in an arm-chair and retail with boyish zest, yet complete lack of malice, all the gossip of the University or the Village (meaning Dublin). On other, much rarer, occasions, he would greet me with a Judge Jeffrey's voice and the scowl of a Cataline (immortalised by Cicero), as if I were a negro bell-boy breaking in upon the busy hours of the President of Harvard. At first I was hurt. But I soon learned how to deal with the situation. I would just say : “Please reserve your ogre's mask for your Higher Dip class-room, to overawe the giddy graduettes into silence. I see behind it”. Then the mask would drop, like an April cloud passing from the face of the sun and it was odds that I would be kept till I was late for my next: appointment.

It would be idle to pretend that this trait in his character was not a defect without serious consequences. Not everybody saw behind the mask, and many never had the opportunity of correcting the impression made by even one exhibition of what seemed arrogance and bad forin. I have heard him described as “a bear with a toothache”,; and felt at once that the indictment was intelligible, yet radically and terribly unjust. Fr Corcoran was temperamental. He was also a man of strong prejudices and decided views, always based upon solid learning and ripe reflection. But so far from being arrogant, I think his brusquerie was the obverse of his shyness, a sort of protective pigmentation of the soul within.

But all this has relation only to later life. In those distant and nostalgic days when first I knew him, I cannot recall a single instance of sternness even, not to speak of harshness. Fr John Byrne SJ, who was also a member of the class, has vivid recollection of one - only one - occasion when he barked out : “ Keep silence, Kent; you're always talking”. This may, of course, be true, but I cannot recall it; nor can the victim of it, Pierce himself.

The fact, of course, was that Mr Corcoran exercised an easy, natural and inevitable ascendancy over his pupils. Corridor gossip invested him with a halo for scholarly attainment. Had he not won a gold medal, no less for both Latin and English Verse from the University? True, he looked the least poetic of men; but against the testimony of two gold medals, what did that matter? Shakespeare never acquired even one! (Gracious! but it is good to be young and simple of heart. O fortunatos nimium, sua si bona norint!)

Hence the question of asserting his authority never arose, and he regarded corporal punish ment as a confession of failure on the teacher's part, at least in general. But there was much more than this negative side to things. Mr Corcoran was a born teacher. He had the authentic vocation and was wholly devoted to his task. He was interesting because he was interested, not merely in Intermediate results, which he had too much good sense. to despise, but which he felt might be left to take care of themselves if the teaching was well done, And even under the handicap of a system which put a positive premium on cramming, his principles were justified by the pragmatic argument of success. Only in one respect did he seem slightly wanting. As professor of Latin, Greek, English, History and Geography, he had three-quarters of the whole cultural training of the curriculum to impart. And in the conveying of knowledge he was as nearly perfect as one can hope for in a defective world. But out of a certain shrinking from self-revelation, as I conjecture, he refrained from pointing out the literary beauty of the classics, and even smiled semi-approvingly upon the “Nil admirari” attitude which the school-boy loves. In encouraging us to think for ourselves, as he certainly did, he showed indulgence when we thought foolishly and very immaturely. He left us to grow up. Perhaps, also, he was himself slightly lacking, despite the two gold medals, in æsthetic feeling and enthusiasm for the merely artistic as such. His great motto was the “Rem tene, verba sequentur” of grim old Cato. His own style was always clear, vigorous and impeccably correct. But all the charms of all the muses hardly flowered in a lonely word. And, indeed, he would have blushed at the idea of turning florist at all. He would, on occasions, read for us an exceptionally good leading article from some of the greater newspapers, and point out how, with an economy of language, it combined lucidity, directness, persuasive force. All the rest in his eyes was little more than trimmings about which serious people scarcely bothered.

It is evident at once that in all this there was much wisdom and good sense; and that in seeking to discipline our Celtic exuberance in language he was essentially right. Yet it is also clear that great literature and great art, like great music, contain a certain intangible element which makes an emotional appeal, and which may all the less be ignored because it is the very index of inspiration. Mr Keane, though he laboured to drive the texts into our heads as assiduously as Mr Corcoran, or more so, did not neglect at times to touch upon literary merits. His immediate reward was, of course, derision, Yet our scepticism was less sure of itself, and, even while we scoffed, we feared that the De Falsa Legatione might be a fine speech after all, and the Medea have a meaning: It is a pity, and a handicap, that schoolboys find themselves forced to read, in a strange tongue, of “old, unhappy, far-off. things and battles long ago”, without any interest in the events or sympathy with the characters, I or any consciousness that the Odyssey, for example, is a more thrilling boy's tale than Robinson Crusoe, and the Iliad a finer historical romance than Ivenhoe, not to speak of Henty or “Deadwood Dick”. If they could be persuaded to take the fact on faith at first, they might be encouraged in their struggle with the linguistic difficulties. And it is the duty of a teacher to instil, as far as he can, a love as well as a knowledge of the old masterpieces that have proved their universality of appeal. by outliving-all the passing fads and fashions of centuries.

Mr Corcoran remained master of Rhetoric for eight years after I left. Then he passed, on to very much higher pursuits and more: important activities. But I never “sat at his feet” again. Instead, I was called upon, in 1907, to try to fill his shoes, or, perhaps one might say, seven-league boots, in Senior Grade (not immediately, for one or two others had intervened), and inherited his array of beautiful maps and the high standard he had set. I felt like David donning Saul's armour ; and sought all the hints I could get as to how to use the panoply. Everything he knew or had was at my disposition. No man of his generation was so prodigal of time and labour in assisting others. He worked, of coursey with the ease and speed of a perfect machine well-oiled. For all that, it was a source of perpetual astonishment that he could meet a simple request with reams of beautifully written sheets or polygraphs containing every thing you could wish to know.

Outside class, Mr Corcoran mingled little with the boys. In our games he took no interest at all; but, as President of the Higher Line Debate, he was brought into some contact with a circle wider than his own class. And he was always easy of approach to those who wished to consult him, for though never familiar, or piously avuncular, he was singularly affable, friendly and considerate. He never nagged or scolded, and was ideally patient even with poor achievement, if he felt it was not the result of laziness or indifference. The whole year passed without an unpleasant incident of any kind, and the work was well done in spite of the paradoxical outcome in the public examinations.

Just prior to these, and during them, he unbent considerably, and did a lot of informal coaching, which he could make very pleasant. Gathering us surreptitiously under the hideous bust of Demosthenes, which then stood symbolically 'in the classroom, he would produce from one of the presses, a large box of strawberries-purloined, we used to suspect, from the garden-and he would try to give Matthew Arnold's “sweetness and light” motto a very literal application. All things considered, he was already in those early days a model schoolmaster.

If this were meant to be a critical appreciation of his whole career, I would not be the person to undertake it, nor “The Clongownian” the medium for its presentation, It would raise larger issues which would call for elaborate examination. No man of his generation has exercised more influence upon the whole educational policy of the Saorstat or Eire. No single professor in the National University has stamped his personality more upon it. The chair he held made that inevitable. But his indefatigable industry, his profound knowledge of his subject, his decided views and tenacity in the propagation of them, in a word, his all-round competence, made him certainly one of the moulders of the young university, and through it the chief shaper of the teaching body that in both primary and secondary schools is now responsible for the education of the country.

This makes it inevitable that much will be heard about his policy in the days to come ; but the final judgment must wait till time lifts many à curtain not yet within reach of the scene-shifter. I have merely endeavoured. to give a thumb-nail sketch of him in his first year as a teacher, and will only add that I think he never altered in one thing: he remained constant to the Scholastic principle : “Prima et maxime sancta professoris lex discipulorum utilitas esto”. As a consequence he enjoyed their confidence more than any other of his colleagues, as his perpetual re-election by Convocation proved. This confidence he always merited and finally repaid, full measure pressed down and running over, in the magical transformation of 86 St. Stephen's Green. There his spirit can say: “Non omnis moriar”, or, “Monumentum si quaeris, circumspice”. I know Latin tags are anathema to the stylists of to-day. But they slip irresistibly from the pen when I think of him who first gave them a meaning for me, and who stood stoutly to the end for the Classics in a world losing humanity because it has thrown the Humanities out of doors, with other even more precious things.

P J Gannon SJ

Creagh, Peter, 1612-1685, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1121
  • Person
  • 1612-17 November 1685

Born: 1612, Cashel, County Tipperary
Entered: 27 September 1635, Mechelen, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 07 April 1640, Antwerp, Belgium
Professed: 1654
Died: 17 November 1685, Limerick

Alias Piers Crow

His father John was an alderman in Cashel. His mother was Elizabeth Flemine
Studied at Cashel, then Lille, Louvain and Douai under Jesuits
1642 at Lyra (Lier FLA)
1644 First came to Irish Mission
1654 a formed Spiritual Coadjutor
1655-1658 at Arras College (FRA) teaching
1666 Living near Limerick teching Grammar, Catechising and administration - then banished to France for 6 years

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Son of John and Elizabeth née Flemme. Uncle of Dr Creagh, Archbishop of Dublin.
Early education was at Cashel and then studied Humanities under the Jesuits at Lille and two years Philosophy at Douai at Anchin College before Ent. He was admitted to the Society by the FLA Provincial Frederick Tassis, and Brussels 28/09/1635 (Mechelen Album)
After First Vows he did three years Theology taught Humanities for five years
1642 At the Professed House in Antwerp (FLA Catalogue)
1644 Came to Irish Mission (HIB Catalogue 1650 - ARSI)
1666 Living near Limerick, teaching Grammar and Catechism, and administering the Sacraments
He was an exile in France for six years and on the Mission for twenty-five (HIB CAt 1666 - ARSI)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of John (Alderman) and Elizabeth née Fleming
Studied Humanities under lay masters at Cashel and later at the Jesuit College of Lille. He then began Philosophy at Douai before Ent 1640 at Mechelen
After First Vows he was sent for his studies at Antwerp and was Ordained there 07/04/1640
1641-1642 Tertianship at Lierre (Lier)
1644 He sent to Ireland and to the Limerick school to teach Humanities.
1652-1660 Under the “Commonwealth” he was deported to France, where he taught Humanities at Arras College and later Prefect at Bourges
He returned to Ireland again after the restoration, and sent first to Cashel, but then in 1666 until his death he worked as a teacher and catechist at Limerick, where he died 17 November 1685

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Piers Creagh 1612-1685
Piers Creagh was born in Carrigeen Castle 3 miles form Limerick on the Robborough Road in 1612. He was a nephew of the Primate Martyr, and a brother of the Mayor of Limerick who distinguished himself during the siege. Another brother was Domestic Prelate to Alexander VII.

Piers entered the Society in 1637. He was attached to our College in Limerick as a Master, as we find in the examination of Fr Netterville of October 1678. Later he taught at Poitiers, where he had as his pupil his nephew Peter, later Bishop of Cork and finally Archbishop of Dublin.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
CREAGH, (or Crow) PETER, was 33 years of age in 1649, and then residing at Limerick

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”.

◆ The Clongownian, 1951

Obituary

Father Frederick Cuffe SJ

The news of the death of Father Fred Cuffe early in April will come as a sur prise and a shock to all Old Clongownians who knew him either as a boy in the college or as an enthusiastic and energetic professor of the French language. One who knew him intimately for a quarter of a century finds it difficult to imagine any part of his life not characterised by this enthusiasm and energy. Over that considerable period one could not, on the closest observation, discover the slighest change in the principles that guided his every action, little or great. These principles were founded on a deep appreciation of the supernatural; for Fr Cuffe was above all a man of God possessed of a self-belittling humility that was never scandalised, and consequently souls were drawn to him as iron to the magnet. People who had met him only casually frequently and affectionately asked for him. Past pupils home on holidays from their labour's as priests in the far-flung mission fields of South Africa and Australia went out of their way to visit Fr Cuffe at Clongowes. His fervent sermons from the altar of the People's Church are still recalled; likewise his tender and untiring care and solicitude for the sick of the locality.

But the strongest of constitutions could not indefinitely withstand the demands of his unbounded energy and enthusiasm for God's work. Some eight years ago saw him struck down by an illness that forced him to retire from his work in Clongowes. That was doubtless a great blow to a man of such supernatural ambitions as Fr Cuffe; but here, too, the character of the man of God was apparent. Never once was he heard to murmur a word of complaint though he inust certainly have regretted that he no longer possessed his former energy to spend in the service of the well beloved Master. A cold developed while attending the Easter ceremonies in the parish church brought on a severe attack of pneumonia, which he was not strong enough to resist, and Fr Cuffe passed to a well-deserved reward. RIP

The Irish Province of the Society of Jesus is the poorer for his loss. To his brothers and sister we tender our deepest sympathy in their bereavement.

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1951

Obituary

Father Frederick Cuffe SJ

It is with deep sadness that we chronicle the death of Father Frederick Cuffe, Vice-Superior of the Apostolic School (1923-'33). Though Father Cuffe has been in poor health for a number of years, bis last illness was short. On April 5th he was taken suddenly ill and died the following day in a Dublin hospital.

Father Cuffe's connection with Mungret goes back to 1917 when he came here as a Scholastic. Having himself been educated in Belgium, he was well grounded in the French language, and consequently his two years' teaching was very fruitful in its results. After his ordination in 1923; Father Cuffe returned to Mungret as Vice-Superior of the Apostolic School, Again he showed himself as a skilled and highly efficient teacher of French, but his main work lay in a different sphere. As an upholder of the highest ideals, Father Cuffe is principally remembered by the students of this time who passed under his care. Thoughtfulness, gentle ness with firmness, piety, strength of character, a great devotion to the Sacred Heart and Our Lady were the virtues that he inspired in those whom he helped to form both by word and his own example; for Father Cuffe was above all other things a saintly priest. A grotto to the Sacred Heart in the Apostolic playground bears witness to his efforts to adorn the college. The boys who passed through his hands in Mungret can each testify to his special interest in them, for he never failed to write to each of his old alumni on the occasion of their ordination, and later, when he was at Clongowes and Emo Park, was constantly inquiring about the Past whom he had known.

Two years ago we were glad to have a visit from him. It was apparent then that he was not in good health. Yet he bore his suffering with his accustomed cheerful spirit. We offer our sincere sympathy to his brother George, who was a student here, to Colonel Cuffe, DSO, and to his sisters. RIP

Cullen, James A, 1841-1921, Jesuit priest and temperance reformer

  • IE IJA J/24
  • Person
  • 23 October 1841-06 December 1921

Born: 23 October 1841, New Ross, County Wexford
Entered: 08 September 1881, Leuven Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained 25 October 1864, Cathedral of the Assumption of BVM, Carlow, County Carlow - pre- entry
Final vows: 02 February 1892
Died: 06 December 1921, Linden Nursing Home, Dublin

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1883 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Excerpts and paraphrase from a notice which appeared in the newspapers on his death :
Early Education at Clongowes, and then at Carlow College where he was Ordained 1964. He was then appointed by the Bishop of Ferns Dr Thomas Furlong as CC in Wexford for two years. in 1866, at the invitation of the Bishop, he became a member of a community of Missioners comprising four Priests in Enniscorthy. He then joined the Society in 1881.

After his Noviceship his career may be divided under three headings : Literary, Missionary, Temperance work.
He is probably best known as the founder of the “Irish Messenger of the Sacred Heart”, which he started in January 1888. For sixteen years he watched over the development of his periodical, and starting offshoots such as “Messenger Popular Penny Library” which was the forerunner of the “Irish Catholic Truth Society”.
1904 He was sent to Gardiner St aged 63, and he worked there until his death in 1921. Here he began another phase of his work, that of Missioner and retreat giver. In this work he became known in almost every Parish in the country. In addition to bringing his work to England, he also spent two year long stints working in South Africa.
However, it is mainly his work in the cause of temperance that he is best known. He is sometimes called a “Second Father Matthew”. He had been a leading figure in the temperance movement of Ferns in the 1870s, and in 1885 founded the “St Patrick’s Total Abstinence Association” among the students at Maynooth.
1901 He inaugurated a branch of the “Pioneer Total Abstinence Association”. Confined at the outset to women only, it started with four ladies under the Presidency of Mrs AM Sullivan. However, after a homily he gave in Cork, so many men came to the Sacristy asking for the “Pioneer Pledge”, that he decided to extend the Association to both men an women. The Association made such rapid progress that at a public meeting in the Mansion House he could say that its numbers had reached a quarter of a million, and his Pioneer Catechism had by 1912 reached a circulation of 300,000.
Many messages of sympathy were received at Gardiner St from Bishops and Clergy in Ireland”. (cf https://www.ucd.ie/archives/t4media/p0145-ptaa-descriptive-catalogue.pdf)

“Extract from a paper Entitled ‘The Holy Eucharist in Modern Ireland’ read by the Right Rev Mgr MacCaffrey, President, St Patrick’s College, Maynooth, at the International Eucharistic Congress, Dublin 1932”.
The extract eulogises James Cullen for his spread of devotion to the “Sacred Heart” throughout Ireland, his work on the “Apostleship of Prayer” and the “League of the Sacred Heart”. It also eulogises his founding of the “Irish Messenger of the Sacred Heart”, and his particular work in promoting the spiritual welfare of its Promoters, with the assistance of local Bishops and Priests, such that in his own lifetime, there was hardly a Parish in Ireland in which devotion to the Sacred Heart had not been established. This in turn left to a devotion to Our Lord and the Eucharist, replacing a spirit of fear with one of love and confidence. The “First Friday” practice, founded on a promise made to St Margaret Mary Alacocque, became widespread in Ireland, and led people to more frequently receive communion. ‘Holy Communion is not to be regarded so much as as a reward for a holy life, but as a means of becoming holy’, wrote Father Cullen.” (The Book of Congress p 161)

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Cullen, James Aloysius
by Diarmaid Ferriter

Cullen, James Aloysius (1841–1921), Jesuit priest and temperance reformer, was born 23 October 1841 in New Ross, Co. Wexford, the eldest of five sons and three daughters of James Cullen, a businessman, and Mary Cullen (née Bolger). He was educated locally by the Christian Brothers in New Ross before moving to the Jesuit college at Clongowes Wood, Co. Kildare, in April 1856. From 1861 to 1864 he was a student at Carlow college and was ordained a priest at Carlow cathedral on 25 October 1864, only five days after he had reached the canonical age. He was appointed curate in Rome Street Church in Wexford and worked closely with Dr Thomas Furlong (qv), bishop of Ferns. He became heavily involved in fighting intemperance, building churches, founding religious teaching institutions and retreats for nuns and priests, and launching the Missionary Institute in Enniscorthy.

Although he had been wary of the Jesuit order from an early age, disliking their association with the middle classes, his preoccupation with the spiritual exercises of their founder, St Ignatius Loyola, and his apostolic endeavours slowly led him to reverse his opinion: in March 1881 he made a vow to enter the order, enrolling in September 1881 at the novitiate of the Belgian province at Arlow, at the age of 40. The following year he enrolled to study moral theology and canon law at Louvain. In September 1883 he took his vows at the Jesuit House of Studies in Milltown Park in Dublin, where he became well known as a missionary of the Blessed Sacrament, a promoter of devotion to the Sacred Heart and the Blessed Virgin, and a temperance reformer. He was appointed spiritual father to the students at Belvedere College, Dublin (1884) and national director of the Apostleship of Prayer (1887), marking a further commitment to the spread of Sacred Heart devotion. In 1888 he began publication of the hugely circulated Catholic weekly, the Irish Messenger of the Sacred Heart, which he also used to promote temperance. He produced his Catechism of temperance in 1892, and in the same year travelled to South Africa as a missionary, making a return visit in April 1899.

Extraordinarily demonstrative in his personal piety and organisational ability, Cullen established the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association of the Sacred Heart in the presbytery of the Saint Francis Xavier Church in Gardiner St., Dublin, on 29 December 1898. Over the course of the twentieth century it grew into one of the largest temperance movements in the world and claimed 500,000 members by the 1950s. They were labelled ‘Pioneers’ because of a novel method of pledging: Cullen developed the concept of adults (those over 16) making what was termed a ‘heroic offering’, pledging to abstain from alcohol for life, publicly identifiable by the wearing of a pin which depicted a bleeding Sacred Heart. Cullen's initiative was not only the product of an acute social conscience – his early endeavours in Wexford and his work in inner-city Dublin convinced him that much of the poverty and deprivation he witnessed was the result of excessive drinking – but also a belief that intemperance could only be fought by an absolutist life-long pledge, in contrast to the loose ‘en masse’ administration associated with the famed but short-lived temperance crusade of Fr Theobald Mathew (qv) in the nineteenth century. The Pioneers were organised on a parish basis under the guidance of a spiritual director and controlled by a central directorate of Jesuit priests based in Dublin. Juvenile and later temporary pledge branches were also introduced.

A strong opponent of British imperialism, Cullen closely aligned his argument for temperance with the political and cultural nationalism prevalent in late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Ireland. Although never a masterful orator, he aggressively pursued the temperance cause through a column devoted to Pioneers in the Irish Catholic newspaper which he wrote from February 1912 until his death. This portrayed Pioneers as the soldiers of Christ engaged in a battle against intemperance which was destroying Irish health, morals, and welfare, and demeaning Irish claims to be a viable political and economic entity. He continually claimed that ‘the only thing wrong with Ireland is the excessive amount of drinking going on’. At the time of his death there were 280,000 Pioneers in Ireland.

Cullen was also active in Dublin's inner city in promoting sodalities, religious leagues and social alternatives to the public house. He also placed exacting spiritual demands on himself including four hours of obligatory prayer every day. He died 6 December 1921 in Dublin; he was said to be elated on hearing of the signing of the Anglo–Irish Treaty, hours before his death. Over 200 priests and ecclesiastical dignatories attended his funeral in Dublin.

Lambert McKenna, Life and work of Rev. James Aloysius Cullen SJ (1924); P. J. Gannon, Fr James Cullen (1940); Diarmaid Ferriter, A nation of extremes: the Pioneers in twentieth century Ireland (1998)

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father James Cullen 1841-1921
Fr James Cullen was born at New Ross in 1841. He received his education at Clongowes, and he was ordained priest for the diocese of Ferns in 1841. For two years he served as curate in Wexford Town. In 1866 he and three other priests of the diocese founded the “House of Missions” at Enniscorthy.

In 1881 Fr Cullen entered the Society. As a Jesuit Fr Cullen is best remembered as the founder of the Pioneer Movement of Total Abstinence, which started in the Presbytery at Gardiner Street in 1898, with a membership of four women. Today its members number thousands, not only in Ireland, but across the sea in America and Australia, and anywhere an Irish Priest works on the Mission.

But his greater claim to fame may be found in the words of Monsignor McCaffrey, President of Maynooth, in a paper read at the Eucharistic Congress in 1932 :
“But, to the distinguished Jesuit Fr Cullen, the great Apostle of Total Abstinence, more than to any single individual must be given the honour of spreading this devotion to the Sacred Heart throughout the length and breadth of Ireland. A man of the highest spirituality himself, thoroughly convinced of the efficiency of this devotion to effect a spiritual revolution, and gifted with wonderful powers of organisation, he threw himself with ardour into the work, once he had been appointed Director of the Apostleship of Prayer and League of the Sacred Heart. Through the pages of ‘The Irish Messenger of the Sacred Heart’ which he founded, he carried through this campaign so successfully, that even in his own lifetime, there was hardly a parish in Ireland, in which the devotion to the Sacred Heart was not firmly established. He was also the founder of the ‘Messenger Popular Penny Library’, the forerunner of the ‘Irish Catholic Truth Society’.”

He died on December 6th 1921. Truly, when we think of the Pioneer Movement as it exists today, Fr Cullen’s epitaph might justly be written :
“Exegi Monumentum aere perennius”.

◆ The Clongownian, 1922

Obituary

Father James Cullen SJ

Father Cullen’s Life in brief:

1841 Born at New Ross, Co. Wexford.
1856-61 Student at Clongowes.
1864 Ordained priest at Carlow and appointed Curate at Wexford.
1866 Becomes one of the founders of the House of Missions, Enniscorthy.
1881 Enters the Society of Jesus..
1885 Founded a Total Abstinence Association among Maynooth Students.
1888-1904 Founder and Editor of the “Irish Messenger”, Editor of the “Messenger Popular Penny Library”--the forerunner of the Catholic Truth Society.
1898 Founded the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association,
1904 Attached to the Church of St. Francis Xavier, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin,
1921 December 6th - Death. RIP

If the aim of Clongowes is to turn out great Catholics and great Irishmen - and what other aim has any Irish Catholic School? - then Father Cullen is the greatest of her children. His work falls under three heads - Catholic Literature, Temperance, and Mission Work. In the domain of literature he has a unique record. In 1888 he founded the “Irish Messenger” (the sum of one pound being advanced by the Provincial towards expenses !) He watched over its fortunes until 1904, and to-day the “Irislı Messenger” has a monthly circulation of over 300,000 copies, and is read by Irish Catholics in every quarter of the globe. In addition, he founded the “Messenger Popular Penny Library”, which was the forerunner of the Catholic Truth Society of Ireland. His Temperance Catechism - though it comes more under the head of temperance than of literature, had a circulation of over 300,000 by 1912.

His work for temperance began in the House of Missions, Enniscorthy. In fact, he himself has said that he entered the Society of Jesus because he hoped thus to give his undivided attention to the study of the Temperance problem. In 1885 he founded a Total Abstinence Society among the students of Maynooth College. But it was not until 1898 that he founded the association with which he is most identified in the public mind - the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association, which to-day has a membership of over a quarter of 2 million.

In the conduct of missions and retreats, he travelled all over Ireland, and worked also in England and South Africa. In this branch of his life's activities, too, he had won his reputation as a young priest in Enniscorthy, and even to this day the old people of the diocese of Ferns talk of those woriderful missions preached by him then and of the great good they wrought.

Such in the barest outline is his life, Up to the time of his death he was still working, and, what is still more wonderful, he had that same interest in the live problems of the day which was his as a young man. About three years ago he visited us here in Clongowes. He heard of the Social Study Club, and at once was interested. He asked to meet the officials, took them for a walk in the pleasure ground, and talked to them of the importance of this new work. Later, speaking to one of the Community who was then President of the Club, he told him how interested he was in social work. “If I was a little younger I would attack it”, he said, “but I am afraid I am too old. It would hardly be worth my while”.

We had hoped that the writer who is engaged in collecting matter for a life of Father Cullen would be able to write a sketch of his career in this year's “Clongownian”. Unfortunately, however, this he found impossible at the last moment owing to illness, and we are compelled to content ourselves with this brief outline.

The beautiful appreciation of Father Cullen which follows is from the pen of an old Crescent boy, and first appeared in the “Irish Monthly”. To the editor of that periodical our thanks are due for permission to reproduce it here. For those who knew Father Cullen, his saintliness, his kindliness, his quaint, pleasant humour this beautiful sketch will recall one whom all looked upon as a personal friend. For those who did not have the privilege of his acquaintance, it may do something to explain the greatness of his personality and the astounding success of his world for the glory of God and the salvation of souls.

-oOo-

Recollections of Father Cullen

It was in the year 1876 that I first I heard father Cullen's name mentioned. A kind friend, now dead, had invited me to spend some days at Raheny Park, Dublin. On the first evening he said to me at dinner :
“What drink will you have?” “Is there no good water in the neighbourhood?” I said.
“Oh! so you are a Cullenite”," said he; on seeing my puzzled look, he added “Don't you know Father Cullen, the Jesuit?” I told him I did not. Then he spoke in glowing terms of Father Cullen, a young Wexford priest, who was devoured with zeal, especially for temperance. He told me, further, that the Bishop of Ferns, having set his heart on diocesan priests giving Missions through the diocese, had put certain selected priests in a House of Missions, and among the first, or at the head (I forget which) was Father Cullen. The zeal and success of these priests was such - I hope nobody will be offended if I tell - that in ecclesiastical circles they were (half in joke and half in admiration) styled the Needleguns. (This was a new weapon put into the hands of the French soldiery in the Franco-German War of 1870, spoken of with most as much awe as the “Big Bertha” that bombarded Paris from 80 miles away, during Holy Week in the late war.)

Many a priest calculated to give name and fame to any institution passed through it; two only need be mentioned, His Grace the present Archbishop of Sydney and the subject these lines.

From the House of Missions Father Cullen passed into the Jesuit Noviciate; but, whatever else he left behind him, the divine zeal for Temperance, “like the scent of the roses, hung round him still”. . At any rate so much was I enraptured by my friend's account of him, that from that day forward I had my eye out for “Father Cullen the Jesuit”.

But it was a dozen years or so before I met him. In the year 1888, while I was one of the priests attached to the Limerick Workhouse, two doctors told me that I was threatened with consumption. Late in the month of May, or early in June, I obtained leave to go to Lisdoonvarna. Having got into the train I found only a few in the compartment; but huddled up in a corner, with a black woollen muffler round his neck, was a priest who seemed to me to be aged, and whose harsh cough at once awoke my sympathy, for I was only too familiar with it myself.

I was wondering where he came from, and where going to, when the train, drawing up at Ennis, I found him, like myself, changing into the little West Clare Railway. Oh, for the good old days of earlier years, when we took “the long car” here and drove over the magnificent country through Corofin, Kilfenora, and by Maurya Rua's Castle into Lisdoonvarna, as the afternoon sun was declining towards its bed in the ocean. Thomond of ancient times, with its windowed castles, its ferny hills, and bushy glens, is to my mind the most romantic land in Ireland. Or run in the mail car, if the old mail car is still running, of a summer's evening, for a remembrance that will last you all your life, from Lisdoonvarna by Quinn Abbey in its ruins, through Ruan in its loveliness, into Ennis.

We reached Ennistymon and I found my companion priest preparing to leave. “He is for Lisdoonvarna, on the same melancholy errand as myself”, I said in my own mind. But, no; a private car, in waiting, took him away. I sat in one of the public vehicles, as, bereft of company and interest, I jogged up and down the uneven road to the Spa.

That evening I was surprised to see the place full of priests, going along in soutane and cap, but all solitary and silent. I couldn't think what it meant. Happening, however, to see an old classmate of Maynooth, I stopped to inquire. He put his finger to his lips and whispered : “On Retreat!”

All the priests of the diocese were on Retreat. “Who is conducting it?” I asked hastily. “Father Cullen, the Jesuit; there he is”.

I looked, and saw my companion in the train. I may here add that, at the end of the Retreat, the same priest told me that he thought he never attended so beautiful or so elevating a one; and the subject matter that Father Cullen took was, “The seven steps of : the Priesthood”.

Of all the priests there Father Cullen and I were the only two not on retreat. I watched a favourable opportunity to approach him, I told him where I had first heard his name, and he spoke as charmingly and as delightedly of our common friend of Raheny Park as he had spoken twelve years before of him to me.

We had a high time of it for that week. Every moment that he was free we were off together. We talked of many things as “the bee through many a garden roves”; but when we came to talk of Temperance “we settled there and strayed no more”. At this winding up, I said to him:

“You have now a grand opportunity. You have started your beautiful magazine, The Messenger of the Sacred Heart, which God bless and prosper. Make it a vehicle of temperance”.

It was the first year of the Messenger; and if there is a mistake in the date I have given above, this will correct it. On its appearance I had written to him welcoming it; I had already been getting and circulating the English Messenger.

His answer was: “We must wait till we are fixed in the saddle”. And his final words at our parting on the last day of that week, when I was still insisting, gave this definite promise : “As soon as the circulation of the Messenger reaches 2,000 I will cry, in the words of Father Mathew signing the Temperance Register at Cork, ‘Here goes in the Name of God’.”

During the year I kept dropping him an occasional line, reminding him of his promise. Towards the end he wrote cheerily: “The circulation has reached 5,000; here goes in the name of God”; and the January number, 1889, had duly the beginning of the Temperance Crusade.

Somewhere about this time I had to go to Dublin. At Gardiner Street I learned that Fr Richard Clarke SJ, (the Oxford convert at the time Editor of the Month), would preach on the following day, the 3rd December, on St Francis Xavier. My heart gave a jump. Not long before that, at a critical moment Father Clarke had, all unasked, done me a seasonable and valuable service at a time I badly needed it. I determined at once to be present to hear him, and try to get a chance of saying one word of thanks to him viva voce, I had already written to him, and some letters: had passed between us, but I had never met him.

Next morning I was in good time at St Francis Xavier's. I begged the good Brother to take me where I could see, and not be seen - that the pulpit was all I wanted to see. He took me through corridors and doors, up flights of stairs the inner economy of St Francis Xavier's always reminds me of the Greek cave, where, when one enters, one never could find the way out. He took me, as I thought, up to the ceiling. I said, “O, thank you, Brother, this is grand; but will you come for me again, when the ceremonies are over?” He was good enough to smile at my evident fears and said he would.

With my weak sight I thought I was alone, and was exulting; but a low cough told me there was some one else there. I turned and saw Father Cullen, bent in his characteristic attitude of humility and thought, his cap pushed far down on his head and his Roman cloak about him. I told him what had brought me, and asked him to introduce me to Father Clarke, to say one word of thanks. “We must hurry, then, after the sermon”, he said, “and it must be only one word, for he has to go away immediately”.

I met him, had that one word, was satisfied and glad.

The next place I met Father Cullen was in Limerick, when the present Canon Cregan was the indefatigable Adm of St Michael's. Father Cregan had invited him to conduct a Retreat for the Women's Temperance Sodality and, knowing that Father Cullen and I were old Temperance friends, asked me to meet him, It was in the forenoon, with a brilliant sunshine pouring into the church, that, being put into the organ loft; I was in time to see Father Cullen in the pulpit. He was leaning out over the edge, and a subdued ripple of laughter was passing through the gathering. He was heaping ridicule on the drink fetish: “The baby is born, and there must be drink at the christening; the grandfather dies, and there must be drink at the wake. The horse has got a colic, or the calf has got wind in the stomach - send for whiskey. The boy gets his head clipped and, to prevent ‘getting cold’, he must shampoo with drink. If the day is hot - I'm thirsty, come, and we'll have a pint; is it freezing, come, and we'll have something to warm us. Are you going on a journey, put up a frost-pail. Have you a cough going to bed, put on a night-cap. Have you a pain in your tooth - oh, nothing like a drop to cure a toothache!”

It is singular how trifles remain in one's memory, when serious things, with the passage of years, fade away. I do not remember one thing more about that meeting ; but an incident happened about that time which I tell with some diffidence. It may serve, however, to put learned men “on their taw” about signatures to great things, when one finds a mistake in the case of a small signature.

He wrote to me one morning, saying: “I enclose you a letter, that asks how to establish a branch of the ‘Apostleship of Prayer’. Father Cullen then went on to say that he had a great deal of work pressing on him; and (with some roundabouts and apologies) asked would I write an article or two. My answer was: It was hard for one man to write what was in another man's mind; but I would do my best, and send them to him.

On considering the matter, I thought it would be well to divide it into three papers, and because of the subject, and for Father Cullen's sake, did my best; signed them with his name, and sent them to him. He forwarded them on to the Record, and in due time the first came back to me to be proofed, bearing my name as signature. I corrected it; and because the articles, written at Father Cullen's suggestion, were approved of by him; because I, not being sent, had not authority to preach on the subject, and because Father Cullen's name would carry infinitely more influence than mine, scored out my name, put Father Cullen's to it, and sent it back to the Record.

In a week or two I had a letter from'him, telling me how puzzled he was, when a friend, meeting him in Gardiner Street, spoke of his paper in the Record. He went on to say that at the first opportunity he hastened to find out what his friend had alluded to, and was “so sorry to see the paper with his name to it, that it was a shame”, etc, etc. I laughed at him, and said nothing.
Of course, when the first went on that line, the other two followed on the same rails - with his signature to them.

The last place I met him was at Sacred Heart College, The Crescent, Limerick. It is not many years ago, and again it is only a trifle. All my memories seem to be trifles, but happy trifles inseparably connected with friends, like “the old familiar faces” of poor Charles Lamb; and in the kindly spirit of the gentle philosopher, I make the avowal, with grey hairs on my head and the sands in the glass running low, that God has been kind in allotting to me all through life the truest and happiest friends that human heart could desire.

I forget what Father Cullen was doing at the Crescent - Temperance, I suppose. It was told in Waterford long ago of two brothers who took a hand in stealing sheep, when sheep-stealing was a hanging matter. One was taken, but through some loophole or influence, instead of being hanged, was transported. He served his time, and on returning, the first thing he saw as he set foot on the wharf, was his brother hanging on the gallows. His only comment, they say, was - “Mutton, of course!”

With Father Cullen it was Temperance, of course. He was at luncheon when I called. With the invariable charm and courtesy of the Society towards “an old Jesuit bay”, I was invited in to meet him. My very first look gave me joy, he seemed so hale and vigorous, I reckoned on years and years to come, bringing with them innumerable holy and fruitful works. We shook hands with delight across the table, and in a roguish vein he bent down and kissed my hand. But if he “reviled, I reviled him again”, for before he could withdraw it, I, too, had bent down and kissed his. We then rose up and laughed in each other's faces with gladness, like two schoolboys. God be with him! That is the last time we met.

I saw the noble Avondhu in its flood roll down from the mountains. There was sun shine about it; and on its heaving breast I read the beautiful words of the Holy Book: “I am black, but beautiful” ; black with the burden of riches it bore from its solitary wandering among the distant heights. God had placed riches there, and had bade the infant rivulets to take them in their charge, bear them up in their hands, and carrying them down, fertilize the waiting lowlands, throng. ing with multitudes of men and beasts. One rivulet, hearing God's call before the rest, springs forward, and leads the way; the others follow, all uniting in forming the glorious Avon-dhu.

So it is with the Temperance movement of each generation. The Sacred Heart is scattering its graces on the height. Men come and meditate. Over against is the expelled demon of Drink, having with him (as confessors only know too well) seven others worse than himself; showing the kingdoms of the earth, and crying in his lying voice, for he was a liar from the beginning : “All these will I give you, if, falling down, thou wilt adore me”. Alas! alas ! some poor fools believe.

But the Sacred Heart cries out: “He that will be My disciple, let him deny himself, and so follow Me”. And Father Mathew, in his time, with his vehement slogan,“Here goes in the name of God," springs forth on the height and leads on”. In the next season Fr Cullen, filled with love of the Sacred Heart, devotes a whole lifetime, with all the elan of the mountain flood, to the holy cause. Today men, whose names have not yet become household words, are as truly and wholeheartedly devoting themselves to the sacred cause of temperance: which, religion alone excepted, surer than any other, makes the rough ways smooth and the crooked ways straight.

With the vehemence of the grand old Irish river, they pour down the mountainside, bring ing from theirconversation with God, indelibly written on tables of stone, the peace and blessing of their Creator.

R Canon O’Kennedy

◆ The Clongownian, 1924

Clongownians in Literature

Father James A Cullen SJ - by Father Lambert McKenna SJ

In the “Clongownian”of 1922 there appeaed a very vivid sketch of that distinguished son of Clongowes, the Rev James Cullen SJ. The editor of that date prefixed to this a tolerably complete summary of the work of this man, whose varied activities affected millions of his countrymen. It is unnecessary, therefore, to recapitulate here the career of Father Cullen, but it would be a pity to pass over this biography which, though not the work of an old Clongownian, is still so intimately connected with Clongowes as to fall naturally under the heading “Clongownians in Literature”.

And first, a few words about the book in general before we consider in detail those parts of it which will particularly interest Clongownians. The first, the absolutely essential quality we demand from the author of a life, the primary interest of which is religious, is absolute straightforwardness. He must not fall into the error of imagin ing that because the subject of his work was a very holy man he must be presented to the world as a faultless paràgon. Still less pardonable is the modern error which would transmute charity into common bonhomie, austerity into mild eccentricity, and mistakes and errors into the most lovable qualities in their watered down hero. Father McKenna is utterly removed from either of these irritating attitudes of mind.

Father Cullen is, in every page of the book, a living human being. There is an abundance of detail to enable us to see him as he really was at each stage of his career. It is a record of growing, not a description of a born saint, for if it is true some. saints are born, all are made. Father McKenna shirks nothing, but puts down with frankness and understanding all the facts of this remarkable life, though they are at times puzzling and even disconcerting. But at the end of the book we find ourselves saying, with something a little like awe: “What a life of zeal, of labour, of prayer. If only there were a few more like him”.

The book is well proportioned, much better so than the average biography, and the writing is vivid and clear, and in parts beautiful. The author possesses that vein of quiet humour without which we dare say Father Cullen could not be wholly under stood. He has collected excellent and very complete materials and used them with great effect.

To Clongownians, naturally, the chapter on Clongowes Wood is the most interesting. Father Cullen came to us almost by chance in 1856, and was here five years. He entered in Elements, and until he reached Poetry skipped a class each year in his upward progress and yet found himself each summer an Imperator. It is scarcely necessary to add that in the Debates, the Literary competitions, and the academic dis plays, he was peculiarly distinguished. One good story is told in this connection.

When the subject of the Academy-day Essay (carrying with it a prize of £10) was announced, he found that it was an historical question, of which he was totally ignorant. At the same time, he knew his only serious competitor to be extremely good at history, though poor in graces of composition. He therefore approached this boy with the following novel proposal : I suggest you get up the historical matter and arguments. I will then use them to write two essays one for myself, the other for you. One or other of us will get the prize, which we shall then go halves in. His friend accepted the terms, studied up the matter, and wrote the two essays as arranged. The Master of Rhetoric, who was official judge of the essays, detected signs of James Cullen's style in both compositions. James, summoned before him, stood on the defensive : You have no proof. But all to no purpose. He was to be punished for deceit, etc. James appealed forthwith to the Rector, who admitted the case was not proved against him, but seemed inclined to temporise. James would have none of this: if he was not proved guilty. he was to be treated as perfectly innocent. He therefore did a most unheard of thing. He wrote a long protest to the Provincial in Dublin. He won his case, too, and loyally shared the prize, which was adjudged to the essay he had presented in his own name.

There is another story of a stolen swim which we would dearly like to quote, an episode in which James' audacity brought him even nearer to a flogging, in this case at least well deserved. He had indeed an over-developed liking for playing at Tribune of the Plebs; but apart from that, he seems to have been a studious and quiet boy. He was in after years a great believer in school games, but as a boy was a poor performer. He was, as one expects to find, very pious, more so than is natural in most boys, and it was while serving the Mass of Father Eugene Browne, then Rector of Clongowes, that he felt, as he tells us hinself, with great distinctness, that God wished him to be a priest. There and then his resolve was made, his promise given, and a decision taken which in God's Providence saved, it would seem beyond all doubt, hundreds and hundreds of the souls of his fellow-men.

◆ The Clongownian, 1999

Pioneer Apostle

Father James Cullen SJ

by Bernard McGuckian SJ

Continuing our occasional series on the occupants of the Serpentine Gallery, we feature an essay on Fr James Cullen ST, one of the great apostles of the Irish Church in the late 19th and early 20th century. His enduring influence is to be seen in the periodical he founded in 1888, the “Irish Messenger of the Sacred Heart”, and the Pioneer Association to promote abstinence from alcohol and sobriety in its use in honour of the Sacred Heart, founded ten years later. He has found more improbable fame as the original behind James Joyce's Fr Arnall in chapter three of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.

Previous denizens of the Gallery covered in this series are Sir Nicholas O'Conor (The Clongownian 1994), John Redmond (1995), Archbishop John Charles McQuaid and Oliver St John Gogarty (1996) and Kevin O'Higgins (1997). The contribution on Fr Cullen is by the present Central Director of the Pioneer Association, Fr Bernard McGuckian SJ. Fr McGuckian served on the Clongowes staff for a year before ordination in 1966-7.

For over a century now strangers have been puzzled by our Irish use of two common words, messenger and pioneer. For most of them a messenger was a person, usually male and under twenty, haring around a town delivering goods on a bicycle. A pioneer was an intrepid individual blazing a trail across North America. But here in Ireland these words had a different connotation. “Messenger” meant a little red booklet about the Sacred Heart and “pioneer” someone who took the soft option where drink was con cerned. Behind both these peculiar uses of language is an Old Clongownian and Jesuit priest, one of the Rogues in the Gallery, James Aloysius Cullen.

Late Vocation
Father Cullen's vocation to the Jesuits was slow in coming. He couldn't get far enough away from them on finishing at Clongowes in 1861 although he wanted to be a priest. He opted for his home diocese of Ferns. After four years of study he was ordained at St Patrick's College, Carlow, on 28 October 1864, just five days after his 23rd birthday, the minimum canonical age.

Seventeen years later, after establishing himself as a priest of extraordinary apostolic zeal in Ferns and further afield, he was admitted to the Jesuit novitiate at Arlon, Belgium, on 7 September 1881. He wrote of his intense joy but, particularly, his relief that the Jesuits had been prepared to have him at what he considered that late stage.

For the next forty years his life was an inces sant round of apostolic initiatives of all sorts; missions, retreats, hospital visitations, pam phlets, booklets, conferences, pilgrimages, “magic lantern” presentations, societies, sodalities, St Vincent de Paul meetings, in short, whatever he thought to be “ad maiorem dei gloriam”, the great ideal of his hero, Ignatius of Loyola. It is not surprising that he was a frequent visitor to “Undercliff”, the family home of Fr John Sullivan, in the period leading up to the Servant of God's reception into the Catholic Church. When he died on 6 December 1921, the day of the momentous Anglo Irish Treaty, he was universally regarded as one of the greatest benefactors of the Irish nation of his era.

At Clongowes
His years in Clongowes made a lasting impression on him and he talked affectionately about them afterwards. He was often first in his class, a keen debater and prominent in “Concertationes”, which involved declamation, translation and musical contributions on Academy Day. In a talk at his Alma Mater in 1904 he recalled the games he had played there. “handball-the two kinds of it, Common and Indian - a good old Irish game - cricket, archery, marbles, stilts, peg-tops, battie-dore and shuttlecock”. He was a particularly committed member of the sodality, which was meant to foster regular religious practice. His initiative in founding a branch of the Arch confraternity of the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the Conversion of Sinners gave some inkling of his later bent.

Although enthusiastic about things religious he found nothing to excite him in this regard about his Jesuit teachers. From early childhood, particularly through the influence of his very religious mother, he had developed a gen uine passion for the salvation of the world, something that stayed with him for the rest of his life. But he just couldn't see how what the Clongowes Jesuits did had anything to do with this. What had teaching grammar and sums to do with spreading the Kingdom of God? His view, however, underwent a radical change during his years as a dynamic young priest in Wexford, bent on converting the world. By degrees he came to appreciate the apostolic efforts of his old masters as they tried to imple ment the Ignatian vision in the humdrum of life in a boys' boarding school. When he discov ered the wisdom and shrewd apostolic strategy of the Spiritual Exercises he began to rethink his Clongowes experience. In his voluminous diaries (unfortunately lost, but, we hope, not irretrievably) he often laments his short sightedness during his years there. Lambert McKenna's fine biography, the “Life and Work of Father James Cullen SJ” (1924) documents How zealously he made up for any lost time by giving himself totally to the Ignatian ideal during every waking moment of his subsequent life.

The Sacred Heart
The great passion of his life, as with many of his contemporaries in all the provinces of the Society of Jesus at the time, was the spread of devotion to the Sacred Heart. For him, this devotion, as revealed in 1675 to an enclosed nun, St Margaret Mary at Paray-le-Monial, France, and made public through her Jesuit spiritual director, St Claude la Colombière, was the inspired answer to all problems, personal or otherwise. His appointment as Director of the Irish branch of the Apostleship of Prayer in 1887 gave him full scope for his zeal. This work based on Sacred Heart devotion, the brainchild of two young French Jesuits, François X Gautrelet and Henri Ramière, aimed at mobilizing the prayerful support of all believers for the missions of the Church. Fr Cullen's prayer to Christ at the time appears in his diary: “Make this Apostleship the business of my whole life; make all my works for Thy glory succeed - above all the Apostleship and the Messenger”.

Through the Apostleship he encouraged the devotion throughout the length and breadth of Ireland. In a very short time there was a little red light burning before a picture of the Sacred Heart in every kitchen in the country, people were making a morning offering of all their "prayers, works and sufferings of the day to the Sacred Heart, churches became as crowded at Mass on the First Friday of every month as on Sundays and large numbers were attending a "Holy Hour" in the churches every month.

To promote this work he published the first edition of the Irish Messenger of the Sacred Heart on 1st January 1888. When he first mooted the idea of a publication to his Rector in Belvedere he was given an assurance of “warm approbation and sympathy”. But the cunning Cullen said “How much do you sympathise?” “One pound” was the answer. This was all he needed. By the end of the year the circulation had reached 9,000 and six years later 45,000. As we enter the new millennium it is still going strong. Between four and five thousand volunteer promoters are responsible for maintaining a very high circulation and keeping distribution costs to a minimum. While exact circulation figures are not available (the Messenger is unique in that it does not carry advertisements), it is probably read by substantially more people than anything else published in this country. “This little red book according to one writer remains one of the most startling phenomena of Irish life”.

The Pioneer Association
Another significant contribution of Fr Cullen was the foundation of the Pioneers. He wanted to alert the Irish people to the need for great care in the use of alcohol as he came to know of the widespread heartbreak caused through abuse of it. As a man of faith he was convinced that a remedy was to be found in the “Heart of Christ, the Abyss of all Virtues”. Among these virtues the one he focused on was sobriety. Jesus had once said that some “demons could only be driven out by prayer and fasting”. Working on the assumption that irrational addictive behaviour was one of these “demons” Fr Cullen set about organising what he called the Pioneer Association of the Sacred Heart, It was to be a concerted campaign of prayer and fasting”. Members were asked to make three simple promises: to pray each day for excessive drinkers, to abstain from even the most innocent use of alcohol for life and to wear publicly a little emblem of the Sacred Heart.

Beginning with four ladies on 28 December 1898, the movement grew phenomenally. Within 20 years over 200,000 Irish men and women from every social class had joined the Association. Eventually Irish missionaries took it overseas so that today there are upwards of 500,000 members worldwide, especially in Africa. It was appropriate that an African should have been the principal speaker at the Centenary Mass in Croke Park, attended by 35,000 people from all five continents on 30 May 1999. His Eminence Francis Cardinal Arinze, President of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue, who had seen for himself the great transformation effected in the lives of thousands of his fellow-Nigerians by the Pioneer ideals, spoke of how “the careful apostolic planning of Father Cullen had been blessed by Divine Providence". The Cardinal referred to Fr Cullen's insistence on the importance of prayer and his awareness that without Christ we can achieve nothing. Indeed in his diaries he once wrote, “For every one word I say to a sinner, if I am to do that sinner any good, I must say one hundred words to God”.

Another of the “rogues in the gallery”, Doctor James Corboy SJ, a former Bishop in the Diocese of Monze in Zambia, is also part of the Pioneer story. He received his own pioneer pin as a boy in Clongowes from Fr John Sullivan. He has seen for himself the good fruit produced by the little seed thrown into the ground over a hundred years ago by his great fellow-Clongownian. The most recent Pioneer report from Zambia mentions a membership of “16,000 adults and 10,000 youths” and still growing. The first Pan African Congress of the Pioneers is scheduled for 2001 in Nairobi. The story is just beginning.

◆ The Clongownian, 2009

Roundabout Route To The Jesuits

Father Bernard J McGuckian SJ : Central Spiritual Director of The Pioneer Association.

James Aloysius Cullen (1841-1921), founder of both the Messenger, the well known monthly religious magazine and the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association of the Sacred Heart, first came to Clongowes in 1856.

Gifted all his life with a computer-like capacity for recalling dates, anniversaries and minute details about events, he recalled that it was on April 7th of that year that he set out in the family car from his home in New Ross, Co Wexford to Bagenalstown, where he boarded the Sallins-bound train that would take him to Clongowes. While a boarder there he involved himself enthusiastically in the school-activities, especially the music, debating and academic side of things. Sport was not one of his priorities. There was one thing, however, that did not impress him at the time: the Jesuits who ran the place. Although only in his early teens he was greatly taken by things religious and the notion of evangelisation. Yet he saw little evidence of a similar passion in the teaching staff of his school. As priests they were meant to be “saving souls” and spreading the Kingdom of God and yet all they did was say Mass, teach classes, organise games and supervise dormitories. This impression, formed during his school-days became so much a part of him, that while feeling called to priesthood, the last place that he would have considered living out this vocation was among the men responsible for his secondary education. This attitude would later return to haunt him.

At Clongowes he was academically successful. The Christian Brothers in New Ross had done such a good job on young James that he skipped from Elements to Rudiments after a few weeks and for the rest of his time in the school was usually “Imperator” or first in his class. Strangely enough, in spite of being a model student and punctilious about his religious duties, he was often in trouble with his Prefect whom he considered, according to his biographer, Lambert McKenna, S.J., “unreasonable and arbitrary”. Cullen's own independent streak and tendency to originality were also contributory factors in a series of showdowns.

Father McKenna's account of one extraordinary episode is worth reproducing in toto.

When the subject of the Academy-day Essay (carrying with it a prize of £10) was announced, he (Cullen) found that it was an historical question of which he was totally ignorant. At the same time, he knew his only serious competitor to be extremely good at history, though very poor in the graces of composition. He, therefore, approached this boy with the following novel proposal: 'I suggest that you get up the historical matter and arguments. I will then use them to write two essays, one for myself and the other for you. One or other of us is sure to get the prize, which we shall, then go halves' in. His friend accepted the terms, studied up the matter, and handed the result to James, who wrote the two essays as arranged. The Matcer of Rhetoric, who was official judge of the essays, detected James Cullen's style in both compositions. James, summoned before him, stood on the defensive: “You have no proof”. But all to no purpose. He was to be flogged for deceit, etc. James appealed forthwith to the Rector, who admitted that the case was not proven against him, but seemed to temporise: James would have none of this; if he was not proved guilty he was to be treated as perfectly innocent. He therefore did a most unheard of thing; he wrote a long protest to the Provincial in Dublin. He won his case, too, and loyally shared the prize, which was adjudged to the essay presented in his own name.

McKenna commented that this incident “illustrates James's courage, unconventionality, and initiative qualities which under prudent guidance served him well in after-life in”.

Pioneering zeal
On leaving Clongowes he was accepted for priesthood in Ferns, his native diocese and was sent to St Patrick's College, Carlow for studies. Ordained in 1864 when barely 24 years of age, he actually required a dispensation because he was under the canonical age. Right away, he chrew himself into apostolic work with the enthusiasm and zeal that were to characterise all the activity of his subsequent life. Being in demand for missions and retreats all over Ireland did not prevent him from attending to his parish duties. It was while a curate in Ferns that his advocacy of temperance began. He felt impelled to do something drastic to end the widespread heartbreak caused in so many homes as a result of excessive drinking among boatmen along the Slaney.
While seemingly happy and fulfilled in his work, his copious personal diaries reveal. a deep unease during the 17 years after his ordination, Exteriorly his initiatives were attended by success and were attracting universal admiration but he himself was beginning to see things in a new light. The upshot of it all was his application for admission to the Society of Jesus on May 28th, 1881. As it had the consent and approval of his Bishop his application was approved by the Jesuit authorities. Over those years, as he became more aware of the influence of the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius of Loyola in the life and spirituality of the Church, he began to reconsider his attitude to the rank and file of the Society of Jesus. The motto of St Ignatius and his Order, “Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam” (for the greater glory of God) helped James Cullen to understand that very ordinary activities, if done for a good motive and with a right intention could lead to the salvation of souls and the spread of the Kingdom. He later confessed that, if during his school years he had known of the variety of works undertaken by the Society, he would probably have applied for admission on leaving school. However he was unaware of even the great Jesuit missionary outreach, spearheaded in the Far East by the herculean labours of St Francis Xavier. Only slowly did he come to realize that the whole thrust of the works of the Society was “the salvation of souls” and that this could very well be done by accepting the drudgery of correcting the essays of the burgeoning human being and trying to put manners on him before he had become an incorrigible adult! Indeed, it was only after he had reached this conclusion, the result of a long interior struggle, that he considered himself ready for admission to the Society of Jesus. An entry in his diary for July 29th, 1881 reveals the completion of chat extended gestation process: “I feel today quire a consolation in thinking that I shall have much to do with educating boys”. Fr McKenna's comment on this was; “The prospect, which in Clongowes had turned him from the Society, the prospect of teaching boys, even attracts him”.

After his novitiate in Belgium, as a singularly obedient Jesuit, he would have been ready to spend his life as a teacher in a classroom if his superiors had so wished. This, however, was not what he was asked to do. His superiors realized that his talents lay elsewhere. With their blessing he spent his life, based in Ireland, spreading devotion to the Heart of Christ in an endless variety of good works, publishing, preaching, organising sodalities, clubs, counselling people (among them the Servant of God, John Sullivan SJ), promoting sobriety etc. Many of the good works he started are still thriving.

He died on the day the Anglo-Irish Treaty was signed on December 6th, 1921. Fr McKenna described his last hours.

A friend said to him; “Fr Cullen, you have done a good work in your day”. He answered: “Well, I think I can honestly say I have tried to do my best”.

On the morning of 6th December when the newspaper arrived he was told that the Peace Treaty had been signed during the night. “Thank God”, he replied, “I have lived to see Ireland free”.

A few hours afterwards he said to the nun attending him: “I am going into port, and he breathed his last peacefully about 12 o'clock”.

Cunningham, Thomas P, 1906-1959, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1147
  • Person
  • 24 February 1906-03 September 1959

Born: 24 February 1906, Taieri, Otago, New Zealand
Entered: 04 March 1924, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Ordained: 12 August 1934
Final Vows: 10 March 1942
Died: 03 September 1959, St Patrick’s Mission, Barrow (Utqiagvik), Alaska, USA - Oregonensis Province (ORE)

Transcribed HIB to CAL : 1929; CAL to ORE

by 1928 at Eegenhoven, Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
His grandfather was deported from Ireland to Australia for some act of patriotism. His secondary education was with the Christian Brothers at Dunedin, New Zealand before he Entered the Society in Australia at Loyola Greenwich, 1924.

1926-1927 He was sent to Rathfarnham Castle Dublin for a Juniorate
1927-1930 He was sent for Philosophy to Eegenhoven Belgium and Spokane Washington, USA. During his third year of Philosophy he was transcribed to the Oregon Province (ORE) having volunteered for the Alaska Mission. At Spokane he was known as a quiet and hardworking student with a fine mind, who never seemed to get tired. He was fiercely competitive at sports and the best soccer player among the scholastics.
1930-1931 He was sent to Kashunak School, Holy Cross, Alaska for Regency
1931-1934 He went to Montreal Quebec, Canada for Theology
1934-1935 He made Tertianship at Mont-Laurier Quebec, Canada
1935-1936 He began his missionary work at Nome Alaska
1936-1944 He was sent to work at Little Diomede Island Alaska. He became a US citizen 01 October 1941.
1944-1946 He was a Military Chaplain with the US Army, during which time he visited Australia and the Pacific region, which included New Caledonia, Manila, Honolulu, Guam and Japan. He even spent four months in Korea in 1946
1946-1947 After the war he returned to Little Diomede Island
1947-1950 He was sent to work with the Eskimos at King Island Alaska. Here he taught school at the Bureau of Indian Affairs, as well as catechising, visiting the sick and sharing in village life. This included joining the local men hunting.
1950-1952 He became a Chaplain with the Air Force, spending much of his time teaching Arctic survival to servicemen.
1952-1953 He spent a year as a missionary at Kotzebue (Qikiqtaġruk) Alaska
1953 He moved further north in Alaska to Point Barrow (Nuvuk). Using this as a base, he went on long dog-sled journeys across the world’s last frontier, seeking Eskimo souls for Christ and working with white Catholics in Point Barrow (Nuvuk), construction workers, military personnel, people connected with the school, the hospital, the US Weather Bureau and the Civil Aeronautics Administration. He also ministered to the men working on the “Distant Early Warning” radar sites.

His life in Alaska was a saga of heroic deeds. he once saved a village from starving by personally conducting a hunt on the Arctic Ocean during very severe weather. His trained eye picked out the ice floe that was to be the home of scientists and airmen for eighteen months during the “International Geophysical Year” of 1957. This project was known as “Operation Ice Skate” and was completed under the guidance of Thomas Cunningham.

His “Parish” had been the 150,000 cold square miles of Alaska above the Arctic Circle. His parishioners were anyone he met. For a quarter of a century he laughed at Arctic dangers, survived pneumonia - which he caught while cruising the icy Bering Sea in a leaky sealskin boat. He leapt down an icy cliff and jumped to safety from ice cake to floating ice cake as Soviet officials sought to take him captive when his boat had been blown into Big Diomede Island (Gvozdev) during an Arctic storm. He mushed through winter blizzards that had kept even the Eskimos indoors, travelling on one missionary journey for 2,500 miles behind dogs.

His deeds in the Arctic became legendary and were told and retold wherever Eskimo or white men gathered along the Arctic coast or north of the glacier-packed Brooks Mountain range.

He learned the Eskimo language during his early Alaskan years, and spoke it with a fluency that amazed the natives. He was a scholar, who compiled an Eskimo dictionary of over 7,000 words and their English equivalents. He could look at an ice flow and tell the age of the ice, and accurately guess its depth and longevity. He knew more of the traditions, legends and anthropological lore of the Eskimo than anyone else in the north. He held a Major’s commission in the Air Force and had received a commendation-of-merit ribbon from the Secretary of the US Air Force.

He was a very cheerful person, very pro Irish and anti British, and a marvellous raconteur. He was small in stature, but very strong. He said he chose the Alaskan Mission because it was cold like his native place in New Zealand. He died in his Rectory cabin at Point Barrow (Nuvuk) from a heart attack. The US Air Force flew his body from there to Fairbanks, and he was buried there with full military honours and a 15-gun salute.

He was a remarkable Jesuit, described by a fellow missionary as “one of the most loved, versatile and dynamic missionaries ever to serve the Alaska Missions”. He was recorded in the “Congressional Records” as “a noble and gallant figure, a devoted servant of God and his fellow men”. Both “Time” and “Newsweek” magazines noted his passing.

cf “Memoirs of a Yukon Priest”Segundo Llorente SJ, Georgetown University Press, Washington DC 1990 - ISBN 10: 0878403615

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 6th Year No 2 1931
Alaska :
Mr Tom Cunningham has already been doing excellent work in Alaska. He will be most likely prefect and principal of a school next year.
Irish Province News 8th Year No 2 1933
Montreal
A great many of us remember Mr. Tom Cunningham, an Australian, who finished his juniorate at Rathfarnharn in 1927. He volunteered for the Alaskan mission, and at the end of philosophy was sent to the far north. He is now doing 2nd Year Theol. at the “Immaculate” Montreal. He sends an interesting letter :
It will be no time 'till I find myself back in Alaska for a life sentence, and the moment cannot come too quickly for me. It is true that life in Alaska is hard. You are lonely and cold, the food is of the crudest kind, the silence of the Arctic winter nearly drives you crazy, and you begin to wonder sometimes if you will ever see the sun again, or get a letter from home.
But it has its compensations. There is a sort of mysterious something about the Yukon that gets a grip on you, and makes you wish to be there rather than any place else. It must be the grace of God. I know that I wouldn't stay in Alaska one day if it were not for a supernatural motive.

Irish Province News 12th Year No 2 1937
ALASKA :
The following letter is from Father T. Cunningham who was a Junior at Rathfarnham in the year 1926-27. Shortly afterwards he joined the California Province in the hope of being sent to the Alaska mission. He now belongs to the Oregon Province, and when his theology at the Immaculate Conception, Montreal, was finished his hopes were realized, and he was sent to Alaska, the land his heart desired. Our regret is that limited space prevents our giving the entire letter, but the parts we are enabled to give are decidedly interesting. The letter is an answer to one received from a Jesuit friend.
“When your letter arrived the spirit was low. I don't mean low in the wrong sense of the word, but that lowness that comes from a long, miserable, cold winter, with always a couple more months to go, and a lowness that is increased by had grub, hard work and loneliness.
Much to my astonishment I was assigned on my return to Alaska to Nome. (Father Cunningham had spent some time in Alaska before his theology.) Nome has a reputation of wrecking havoc in the minds and bodies of the clergy. Of my predecessors one went completely mad, one froze to death, three lasted a year and then had to leave through ill health. I have been here since September, 1935, alone, and believe me it's no picnic. I have been to confession once since then when I went fifty miles out of my way to call on my neighbor in Kotzebue 200 miles north of here.
When I saw what I was up against I drew up a schedule to be followed as closely as possible here and when travelling. The day was divided from 5 a.rm. to 10.30 p.m. between prayer, study teaching catechism and manual labor, in such a way that I didn't have time to sit down and feel sorry for myself.
Outside of Nome the work was fine. My territory stretches as far north as the Noatak River, well within the Arctic Circle, and as far west as Cape Prince of Wales, the most westerly point on the Continent. I got over the whole district twice and my procedure was always the same, study of the various changes of dialect in each village, and teaching catechism to the children in the afternoon and to the adults at night. In between times, when I had the dishes washed, dogs fed, and the wood chopped against the next morning, I would do what I could towards easing the various bodily ailments to which the Eskimo is prone. I relied as often as not on the grace of God as on my own medical knowledge. Anyhow I produced some surprising results, and didn't kill anyone.
The winter was moderate. The coldest around here was 70 below zero, but only for a day or so. There was a seven weeks spell of minus 50 during March and April. The coldest I experienced when travelling was 58 below zero. That was too cold to travel but I didn't want to spend the night in the open. I came through the winter with only feet frozen twice, and frost-bitten hands and nose every other week, nothing serious, only inconvenient. It is really hard to describe the cold and the famous north Wind which makes it much worse.
Now we are enjoying what is rightly called Little Winter or that period of two months or so between the end and beginning of the Big Winter. We had five beautiful days early this month (July), but most of the time it's a cold damp atmosphere with an occasional frost and snow flurry. It did clear up enough to see the Midnight Sun on two occasions.
I have made satisfactory progress in the language, and can preach, hear confessions, teach catechism without much difficulty, and I hope to know it as well as possible in two more years. There are no books on the subject, and most of all I know I had to find out just by asking around.
The language has one big rule turn everything possible into a verb. Thus, “I didn't eat all day” is “I dayed without eating” - “Oubluzunga herrinanga”. They have no generic words, for the six kinds of foxes, they have six different words.
The method of counting is queer but logical. They count to twenty, as that is as far as the fingers and toes go. Then they multiply and add till they reach a hundred. 67 would be 20 by 3 plus 7.
Now, my status for next year. I have been billed to found a new mission on Little Diomede Island, in the Bering Sea, near Siberia. I shall be the first priest to winter there, and, as far as I know, the only white man. I go there in September (1936), and will have no communication with the mainland from October till the following July, when the ice begins to break up. Someone has to go there as it is a good place in case we can ever work on the Eskimos in Russia. The address will be : Ignalit - Diomede Island, via Nome. Alaska.
I would take it as a favour if you gave this letter to the Editor of the Province News, as I like to think that all my old Irish friends have not completely deserted me simply because I turned Eskimo.
We haven't enough men here. We cannot do half enough. I have at least six native villages to attend to outside Nome, and a fellow can be only in one place at a time, and dogs go only an average of six miles an hour, and that's good going. I was lucky to get all around twice.
Give my regards to all my old co-juniors,
Sincerely,
TOM CUNNINGHAM, SJ”

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 3 1948
Letter from Fr. Tom Cunningham, King Island, Alaska :
“... A plane flew over this island last week and dropped some mail - a most pleasant surprise. This mail had been accumulating at Nome since last September and it contained two 1947 copies of the Irish Province News. Though it is a long time since 1929, the names of the older members of the Province are still very fresh in the memory.
If you know of any budding missionaries who wish to come out here, tell them from me that they need only one quality above other missionary requirements, viz. the desire and the ability to learn the Eskimo language, which I am convinced is the hardest language imaginable. I don't know though - a few years ago I came across a tribe in Liberia, who were Eskimo in every respect except language. Their language was very simple and after less than a month's association with them, I could get along fairly well. If a future missionary can grasp a language, he has overcome the most difficult part of the Alaska Missions. The weather, travel, terrain, etc. can be handled easily.
If you don't mind, let me bring you up to date on my personal activities. I was on Diomede Island from 1936 to 1940, when I then went to tertianship. Back again on Diomede till 1942 when the war had upset everything. There were soldiers all over Alaska except on these remote islands. I worked with the army quite a lot as adviser on Arctic conditions and spent some time training Arctic Search and Rescue Crews on the Alaska Liberia Wing of the Ferrying Command. Thousands of planes went through Alaska to the European Front. Americans would fly them to Alaska and the Russian pilots would take over there.
In 1944 I was commissioned in the Chaplain's Corps and sent to the S. W. Pacific, being on Hawaii, Guam, Saipan, Manila and eventually Tokyo and Korea. I was released from the army and went to Lewis Washington in September, 1946 and arrived back at Nome two weeks later. I spent last winter between two Missions on the mainland and from January to June, I was on Diomede Island,
Last summer, Fr. Lafortune, the priest who built the Mission on this island died, and King Island was added to the territory which I already had. My Present Parish is composed of King Island and Diomede Island in the Baring Straits and Teller and the village of Igloo on the Mainland. The latter three are accessible during the winter, but once on the island you must stay put till the ice goes.
My plans now are to alternate between one winter here and one divided between Diomede, Teller and Igloo. The population here is 198, all Catholics. Diomede has 94 of whom 86 are Catholics. Teller has 35 Catholics out of 150 and Iglo has 48 people, all Catholics. The distances between are considerable : Teller to Igloo 50 miles, Teller to Diomede 98 miles and Teller to here 40 miles. Teller is a sort of Headquarters. There are two stores there. I built the Chapels at Diomede, Teller and Igloo. This island and its buildings, I have inherited so to speak; a fine Church, nice living quarters and the most fervent congregation I have ever come across. There are at least 25 Communions daily and over 100 on Sundays.
I have been assigned considerable territory as you see, but except for Igloo it's much the same language and I happen to be the only one who knows it. The language will be necessary for at least two more generations. Here I am the only White, so the White population always sees eye to eye in Religion, recreation, politics and is a staunch follower of De Valera.
I have a Radio and get good reception on an average of once a week, so I don't know much about the outside. The programme except for the excellent News broadcasts are poor. The only station I can hear is an Army station at Los Angeles. Even the news, the odd time I hear it, is not very reassuring.
Life here is tranquil. The island is about one mile and a half in circumference, rising abruptly out of the ice. The village is an in credibly steep rocky slope, at least a 60° incline. It is quite an art to manoeuvre around the village. The only way that I can make it when taking Holy Communion to the sick on dark mornings is to tie a rope. around one of the Church supports and hang on. The Eskimos pick out the darndest places to live.
The living is made entirely off the ice and it takes rugged characters to survive. The weather is not too severe. Our coldest day so far was 44 degrees below zero, with a wind of 45 miles per hour.
My day starts at 5 am. and goes on till 10.30 p.m. There are four Catechism classes per day for the children and one in the evening for adults. On Wednesday and Saturday, I hunt in the afternoons, as I. need to eat too. All hunting is done on moving ice and it is sometimes dangerous and always cold and miserable. I take care of my own cooking, washing and house-keeping, so I really have not time to feel sorry for myself. Still, the hardest chore for me is making altar-breads. The iron must be hot, but not too hot and not too cold, and the dough not too thick and not too thin. A sort of equation with four unknowns. All in all it's a busy and I hope, a useful life.
St. Patrick's Day is coming and I have a sermon all ready for Benediction on Wednesday night. Can't help thinking of the days at Eegenhoven when March 17th was the big day and the Belgians and the Englishmen envied us. I understand our old home was pretty well blown up. I wonder what happened to all the friends we had there.
While in Korea, I had hopes of going as far as Hong Kong but I didn't get beyond Shanghai and I was there for only one night. There was an Irish Sister from Roscommon in Seoul, Korea in charge of an Orphanage and every other American soldier was helping her with stuff for her fold. While in Tokyo I heard that Fr. M. Bodkin was chaplain on a British aircraft carrier but I just couldn't visit him.....”

Irish Province News 35th Year No 1 1960
Obituary :
Fr Thomas Cunningham (1906-1959)
(From the Oregon- Jesuit, October 1959)

The frozen frontier of the Alaska Mission lost its restless “Father Tom” on 3rd September, 1959, when Rev. Thomas Patrick Cunningham, S.J. died of a heart attack in his rectory cabin at Point Barrow, Alaska.
His parish had been the 150,000 cold square miles of Alaska that lie above the Arctic Circle. His parishioners were anyone he met.
For a quarter of a century Fr. Tom had laughed at Arctic dangers. He had survived pneumonia, caught while cruising the icy Bering Sea in a leaky sealskin boat. He had leaped down an icy cliff and jumped to safety from ice cake to floating ice cake, as Soviet officials sought to take him captive, when his boat had been blown in to Big Diomede Island during an Arctic storm. He had mushed safely through winter blizzards that had kept even the Eskimos indoors, travelling on one missionary journey 2,500 miles behind his dogs. His deeds in the Arctic had become legend and were told and retold wherever Eskimo or white man gathered along the Arctic coast or north of the glacier-packed Brooks mountain range. His death was as Fr. Tom would have chosen, a quiet going to eternal sleep as he began another exhausting day.
When Fr. Thomas P. Cunningham joined our philosophy classes at Mount St. Michael's, Spokane, WA., in 1929, we knew him as a quiet, hard-working student with a brilliant mind, who never seemed to get tired. He was fiercely competitive in sports and the best soccer player any of us had ever faced. He had grown up in New Zealand where, on 24th February, 1906, he had been born on a farm near Taieri. He talked little of himself, but in defending some political figure in Ireland, he once said that his grandfather had been deported by England to Australia for some act of Irish patriotism.
Fr. Cunningham travelled a roundabout route to his Alaska mission, High school was spent with the Christian Brothers at Dunedin, New Zealand. He entered the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus at Sydney, Australia, 24th March, 1924. He spent his Juniorate at Rathfarnham, Ireland, his philosophy years at Louvain, Belgium, and Mt. St. Michael's, Spokane. He taught school at Holy Cross, Alaska, 1930-31, before entering theology studies at Montreal, Canada. He was ordained 12th August, 1934, at Loyola College, Montreal, and made his tertianship at Mount Laurier, Quebec, Canada. In 1935 he began his missionary work at Nome, Alaska, and the following year went to Diomede Island for a three-year stay.
Giving a chronological account of Fr. Cunningham's work in Alaska tells so little of what he did. Except for his year out for tertianship, he was at Diomede Island from 1936-44. From 1944-46 he was chaplain with the U.S. army. After another year at Diomede Island, he spent three years as missioner to the Eskimos at King Island. From 1950-52 he was chaplain with the air-force, spending much of his time teaching Arctic survival to service-men. After a year as missionary to Kotzbue, he moved north to Point Barrow, Alaska's northernmost tip and, from there, went on long dog-sled missionary journeys across the world's last frontier, seeking Eskimo souls for Christ.

Many Acts of Heroism
Fr. Cunningham's life in Alaska was a saga of heroic deeds. He once saved a village from starving by personally conducting a hunt on the Arctic Ocean during very severe weather. His trained eye picked out the ice floe which was to be the home of scientists and airmen for 18 months during the Geophysical Year. The project, known as “Operation Ice Skate”, was completed under his guidance. He was first ashore on the ice island and last to leave when it broke up. He foretold that the ice island would break twice during their stay and guessed within a week of when each break-up would occur. No life was ever lost in any of the air-force or scientific operations which he supervised.

A Skilled Scientist
Fr. Cunningham learned the Eskimo language in his early Alaskan years and spoke it with a fluency that amazed the natives. He was a scholar who compiled an Eskimo dictionary of over 7,000 words and their English equivalents. He could look at an ice floe and tell the age of the ice and accurately guess its depth and longevity. He knew more of the traditions, legends and anthropological lore of the Eskimo than anyone else in the north. He held a Major's Commission in the Air Force Reserve and had received a commendation-of-merit from the Secretary of the U.S. Air Force.
Fr. Cunningham's body was flown by the U.S. Air Force from Point Barrow to Fairbanks and buried there on 8th September with full military honours and a fifteen-gun salute by the Air Force of Ladd Field. Bishop Francis D. Gleeson, S.J. said the Mass in the presence of twenty missionaries from all over Alaska and innumerable friends from the military, civilians and Fr. Tom's beloved Eskimos.
Erwin J. Toner, S.J.

Daly, Hubert, 1842-1918, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/114
  • Person
  • 16 November 1842-02 February 1918

Born: 16 November 1842, Ahascragh, County Galway
Entered: 13 June 1862, Milltown Park, Dublin / Rome, Italy
Ordained: 1873
Final vows: 02 February 1880
Died: 02 February 1918, St Aloysius, Sevenhill, Adelaide, Australia

Eldest brother of Oliver - RIP 1916; James - RIP 1930; Francis H - RIP 1907. Oliver was the first of the Daly brothers to Enter.

by 1865 at Roehampton London (ANG) studying
by 1867 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1868 at St Joseph’s Glasgow Scotland (ANG) Regency
by 1871 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) studying
by 1872 at Roehampton London (ANG) Studying
by 1873 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) studying
by 1875 at St Wilfred’s Preston and Clitheroe (ANG) working
by 1876 at Glasgow Scotland (ANG) working
by 1877 at Holy Name Manchester - Bedford, Leigh (ANG) studying
by 1878 at Paray-le-Monial France (LUGD) making Tertianship
Early Australian Missioner 1879

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Eldest brother of Oliver - RIP 1916; James - RIP 1930; Francis H - RIP 1907. Oliver was the first of the Daly brothers to Enter. They were a very old Catholic family who resided in the Elphin Diocese. Oliver joined earlier than the others in Rome and was allotted to the Irish Province.

After his Noviceship he studied Rhetoric at Roehampton, and then sent for Regency to Clongowes teaching.
1866 He was sent to Louvain for Philosophy.
1868 He was back at Clongowes teaching, and then in 1869 a Prefect at Tullabeg.
1871 He was sent for Theology to St Beuno’s and Roehampton.
After ordination he worked in the Parishes of Clitheroe, Glasgow and Bedford, Leigh.
He was then sent to Paray le Monial for Tertianship.
1878 He sailed for Australia with John O’Flynn and Charles O’Connell Sr.
While in Australia he was on the teaching staff at St Patrick’s Melbourne for a number of years.
1902 he was sent to Sevenhill where he worked quietly until his death there 07 February 1918

Note from Charles O’Connell Sr Entry :
1879 He was sent to Louvain for further Theological studies - Ad Grad. He was then sent to Australia in the company of Hubert Daly and John O’Flynn.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
He was one of four brothers to become Jesuits, the others being James, Oliver and Francis.

1865-1866 After First Vows he was sent to Clongowes Wood College to teach Rudiments and Arithmetic.
1866-1867 He was sent to Leuven for a year of Philosophy.
1869-1870 He was sent to St Stanislaus College Tullabeg teaching Writing and Arithmetic
1878-1881 He arrived in Australia 09 November 1878 and went to Xavier College Kew
1881-1888 He was sent teaching to St Patrick’s College Melbourne
1888-1893 He was sent back teaching at Xavier College Kew
1893-1901 He was back teaching at St Patrick’s College where he also directed the Choir and boys Sodality. He also taught to boys how to shoot.
1902 He was sent to the St Aloysius Parish at Sevenhill

His own main form of recreation was music.

D'Arcy, John, 1848-1884, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1245
  • Person
  • 23 September 1848-04 June 1884

Born: 23 September 1848, County Tipperary
Entered: 28 September 1867, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1883
Died: 04 June 1884, Cannes, Alpes-Maritime, France

Brother of Ambrose D’Arcy (MIS) RIP 1875, (a scholastic), and six months after another brother William who died a Scholastic 1884.

by 1870 at Amiens France (CAMP) studying
by 1871 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) Studying
by 1873 at Antwerp Institute Belgium (BELG) Regency
by 1882 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Brother of William D’Arcy RIP 1884, a scholastic, six months after him. Brother also of Ambrose D’Arcy who Entered at Milltown and then joined MIS, and he died at St Louis MO 1875 also a scholastic.
He was sent to be a Teacher at Tullabeg and a Prefect at Clongowes for Regency.
He studied Rhetoric at Amiens, and then Philosophy and Theology both at Louvain.
He died of rapid consumption at Nice, France.

D'Arcy, William, 1847-1884, Jesuit scholastic

  • IE IJA J/1246
  • Person
  • 25 July 1847-15 February 1884

Born: 25 July 1847, County Tipperary
Entered: 09 October 1871, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 15 February 1884, Milltown Park, Dublin

Brother of Ambrose D’Arcy (MIS) RIP 1875, (a scholastic) and six months before, another brother John who died a Priest 1884.

by 1874 at Roehampton London (ANG) studying
by 1875 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Brother of John D’Arcy RIP 1884 six months before him as Priest. Brother also of Ambrose D’Arcy who Ent at Milltown and then joined MIS, and he died at St Louis MO 1875 also a scholastic.

He had studied Rhetoric at Roehampton and Philosophy at Louvain.
He was then sent to Regency teaching at Clongowes for some years.
Then he spent some time caring for his health at Tullabeg. He then retired to Milltown, where he died after much suffering of decline 15 February 1884.

Darlington, Joseph, 1850-1939, Jesuit priest

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 9th Year No 1 1934

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

Irish Province News 14th Year No 4 1939

Obituary

Father Joseph Darlington

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

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

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

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

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

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

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

Donovan, Edmund, 1839-1919, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1197
  • Person
  • 09 May 1839-11 May 1919

Born: 09 May 1839, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1858, Beaumont, England - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 19 September 1874, Laval, France
Final vows: 02 February 1879
Died: 11 May 1919, Coláiste Iognáid, Galway

by 1867 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1872 at Laval France (FRA) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He had two brothers Priests in the Dublin Diocese, one the PP of Dunlavin and another PP of Celbridge. Both predeceased Edmund.

Early education was at Belvedere.

After his Noviceship he studied Philosophy and Theology at Laval, finishing his Theology at Milltown.
He spent many years in Tullabeg, Clongowes and Galway.
1886 He went from Tullabeg to Galway, and remained there until his death 11 May 1919.

The following appreciation appeared for Edmund in a local paper after his death :
“Father Donovan entered the Society of Jesus on 07 September 1858 and made his Noviceship at Roehampton, under that distinguished Spiritual Director Father Tracey Clarke SJ. He made his Philosophical and Theological studies in France and was Ordained at Laval, and Final Vows 02 February 1879.
His life as a Priest in the Society of Jesus was mostly spent in the seclusion of the classroom and Church. The results of these long years of useful and self-effacing labour are written in the Book of Life and in the hearts and minds of his many pupils. In the year 1883 we find him Vice-Rector at his old Alma Mater, Belvedere.
For the last thirty four years of his life he worked in Galway. Father Donovan is too well known to the residents of Galway to need any eulogies to raise him in their affection and esteem. The sympathetic crowd of all conditions that attended his Solemn Requiem Mass on Tuesday last testify to that. The members of the Sodality of Our Blessed Lady formed a guard of honour at the funeral, and vied with each other for the privilege of bearing his remains to the grave. The poor, whom, as a true Priest, he loved while he lived, also showed that they had not forgotten him in death.
At Wednesday’s meeting of the Board of Guardians, a vote of condolence was passed with the Jesuit Fathers on the death of Father Donovan, the proposer remarking that in both religion and amongst laymen, the deceased was one of the most respected clergymen in the city.”

Note from Patrick Hughes Entry :
He was then sent to Laval for Theology, and in the company of Edmund Donovan, was Ordained there.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Edmund Donovan 1839-1919
Fr Edmund Donovan was born in Dublin on May 9th 1839. He had two brothers priests in the Diocese, one was Parish Priest of Dunlavin, the other of Celbridge.

Fr Donovan’s life as a Jesuit was spent in the seclusion of the classroom and the Church. The results of these long years of useful and self-effacing labour are written in the Book of Life and in the hearts of his many pupils, but they deserve to be recorded here, if only as typical of the lives of many of Ours in the Province, especially those who toil in the classroom.

In 1883 Fr Donovan was Vice-Rector of his old Alma Mater, Belvedere, but the main years of his life, 34 years in all, were spent in Galway.

He died in Galway on May 11th 1919 at the age of 80. The huge crowd, rich and poor, which attended his funeral testify to the esteem and affection in which he was held in Galway. The members of Our Lady’s Sodality formed a guard of honour at the funeral, and vied with one another for the privilege of bearing his remains to the grave. The poor, whom, as true priest, he had loved in his lifetime, showed that they had not forgotten him in death.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1920

Obituary

Father Edmund Donovan SJ

Owing to going so early to press last year we were unable to record the death of Fr Donovan at St. Ignatius' College, Galway, on the 11th of May. He was one of our oldest pupils, having entered Belvedere in 1852. We have before us as we write a faded pink programme which records how “at the Christmas Exams. 1855, of the College of St Francis Xavier, the following young gentlemen particularly distinguished themselves”. Then follow the names of these distinguished alumni, and amongst them we see in the “Class of Humanity” Edmund Donovan, figuring as first in Classics and German, and second in English and French.

This promis ing beginning was followed by a long life of successful work in the Society of Jesus. As a master in Tullabeg, Galway, Limerick, Clongowes, as Vice-Rector of Belvedere in 1883, and as a zealous Church worker in Galway for the last thirty four years of his life, Fr Donovan ever played the part of a zealous, unostentatious, sincere worker in the vineyard of the Lord. RIP

◆ The Clongownian, 1919

Obituary

Father Edmund Donovan SJ

On the 11th of May, at the age of 80, Father Donovan passed away at St Ignatius College, Galway. His School career belongs rather to Belvedere than to Clongowes for he had been five years at Belvedere before coming to us for the last year of his school life. A few months after leaving Clongowes he entered the novitiate of the Society of Jesus in England. That was in 1858, so that ten years ago he had the happiness of celebrating the Golden Jubilee of his Jesuit life. And that life was one of uninterrupted usefulness and self-effacing labour. He taught in Tullabeg, Limerick, Galway, Clongowes, and Belvedere. Of the last-named, his Alma Mater, he was made Vice-Rector in 1883. “During the time”, says the Belvederian, “he guided her destinies not only did the number of her students increase, but the spirit of work and the general efficiency that marked his reign will bear favourable comparison with the best periods in her long history”.
.
For the last thirty-four years of his life Father Donovan worked in Galway. Up to the last he took his full share in the work of the Church - sermons, late Masses, direction of sodalities, the confessional. His rôle was unostentatious and unassuming, but the sick and the poor will not soon forget his charity, nor his penitents the kindliness and patience of their director.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father Edmund Donovan (1839-1919)

A native of Dublin, entered the Society in 1858. He was prefect of studies at the Crescent from 1883-1885. After a year in Tullabeg, he was transferred to St Ignatius' College, Galway where he was at different times, prefect of studies, master, minister and member of the church staff until his death.

Dooley, Michael, 1850-1922, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/127
  • Person
  • 08 September 1850-26 April 1922

Born: 08 September 1850, Shrule, County Galway
Entered: 27 September 1867, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1878, Kolkata, India
Final vows: 15 August 1886
Died: 26 April 1922, St Ignatius College, Manresa, Norwood, Adelaide, Australia

by 1870 at Amiens France (CAMP) studying
by 1871 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) Studying
by 1873 at St Xavier’s Kolkata (BELG) Regency
Early Australian Missioner 1879; New Zealand in 1885

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Nephew of the famous Father Peter Dooley PP

He was sent for Regency to teach at the Belgian College in Calcutta with the Belgian Jesuits.
He was Ordained in Kolkata in 1878 by Archbishop Paul-François-Marie Goethals SJ, BELG - (First Archbishop of Kolkata)
1879 He was sent to Australia to assist the Irish Mission there in Melbourne and Sydney. He also spent some time at Invercargill, New Zealand, in a Parish given by the Bishop Samuel Nevill of Dunedin. However he taught chiefly in Melbourne and Sydney.
He died at Norwood 26 April 1922.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
Entered 1867

After First Vows he was sent to St Acheul for Juniorate. He was sent to Kolkata India for Regency teaching English at St Xavier’s. He was then Ordained at Asansol, Bengal, India in 1879.

1879-1882 He was sent to Australia and to Xavier College Kew teaching
1882-1886 He was sent to St Aloysius College Sydney, as Prefect of Discipline and also made tertianship in 1886
1886-1887 He was sent teaching at St Ignatius College Riverview
1887-1889 He was sent to St Mary’s Parish, Invercargill New Zealand and was also Minister there. He was Superior here in 1889
1890-1895 Have suffered some ill health he returned to Xavier College Kew
1895-1914 He was teaching at St Aloysius College Sydney
1914 He was sent to St Ignatius Norwood

He is described as a retiring man who did his work quietly and well. He was known as a scholar of great ability, a fluent linguist, well read in many languages and had a fund of accurate information. He was always a man of precise habits. When on holiday in Sydney, he carefully took a tram to each suburb, rode out to the terminus and back, and when he had exhausted all the lines, declared the holiday over and settled back to work again.

His spare time was spent reading. Aristotle remained his pet study when he was well on in years.

Dowling, Maurice, 1896-1965, Jesuit priest, chaplain and missioner

  • IE IJA J/729
  • Person
  • 23 December 1896-27 August 1965

Born: 23 December 1896, Sallins, County Kildare
Entered: 31 August 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 27 August 1929, Valkenburg, Netherlands
Final vows: 15 August 1933
Died: 27 August 1965, Lusaka, Zambia

Part of the Chivuna, Monze, Zambia community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

1942-1946 Military Chaplain

by 1921 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1927 at Valkenburg, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) studying
by 1932 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship
by 1949 at Lusaka, N Rhodesia (POL Mi) working - joined Patrick Walsh and Patrick JT O’Brien in Second group of Zambian Missioners
by 1951 at Chikuni, Chisekesi, N Rhodesia (POL Mi) working

◆ Companions in Mission1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Maurice’s family used to spend a month in Skerries, an Irish seaside resort, in the summer. Maurice Dowling was a keen, strong swimmer and one morning, as a teenager, he saved the life of a girl who was drowning. He went home to lunch and never mentioned the incident. It was when the family had finished tea and Mr Dowling was reading the evening paper, that he came across a paragraph or two describing the plucky rescue by his son. Passing no comment, he scribbled "Bravo"! beside the passages and silently handed the paper to his son. This incident in some way, sums up a characteristic of Maurice that he had already developed at that age, – he was modest in his achievements and helpful to others.

He was born in 1896 in Dublin. His father was the Registrar of the College of Science in Dublin. His mother died early in her married life leaving Maurice and his brother Desmond behind. Both boys went to Clongowes Wood College for their secondary education.

At the age of 18, Maurice entered the Jesuits at Tullabeg and followed the normal course of studies which were followed by Irish Jesuits of the time. He was ordained in 1929 on 29th August. He spent some time in the colleges as teacher and prefect e.g. the Crescent, Limerick in the thirties.

As a young Jesuit, he learned to speak Irish, spending many a holiday in the Gaeltacht (Irish speaking area). He genuinely loved the language and when home on what was to be his last leave, he was delighted to hear that there were in existence Irish-speaking praesidia of the Legion of Mary. He had a great admiration for Edel Quinn who died working for the Legion in Africa.

During the Second World War he volunteered as a chaplain. Just before departing, he was involved in an accident where he was thrown through the window of the bus in which he was traveling. As he lay on the ground in his own blood, he heard one of the rescuers say to another nodding towards Maurice "He's had it"! (but in much more colourful language).
After the war, when the Jesuits in Northern Rhodesia were looking for men, two Irish Jesuits volunteered in 1946 (Fr Paddy Walsh and Fr Paddy O'Brien) to be followed by two more in 1947, Maurice and Fr Joe Gill. They came to Chikuni.

The Bishops had been endeavouring then to set up a Catholic Secondary school for Africans. There was only one secondary school for Africans in the whole country, a Government school at Munali, Lusaka which had been founded a few years before. In 1949 Canisius Secondary School opened its gates to the first class. Speaking of Maurice's work in the college during the first few years, Fr Max Prokoph who had been instrumental in getting Fr Dowling for the mission and who had been his principal, said of him, "I have never met a more loyal man". Fr Prokoph described how in the initial difficult days, Maurice had stood by him on every occasion, always ready to help, never questioning a decision, absolutely loyal.
While at Chikuni, he would travel south to Choma at the week-end to say Mass long before a mission was opened in 1957; also to Kalomo still further south. Then back to the school for another week of teaching. In 1962 he went to Namwala to the newly built mission as the first resident priest bringing with him some Sisters of Charity. He later moved to Chivuna in 1964 and died in Lusaka on 26 August, 1965.

Fr Maurice had great qualities: his deep spirituality and union with God, his great zeal for souls, his kindness and courtesy to all, his optimistic outlook even when things looked by no means bright. He had a zest for life, his cheerfulness was catching. He was loyal as Fr Prokoph remarked. Loyalty would seem to have been the source of his strength, loyalty to God as a priest and religious, loyalty to his country as shown by his deep love of it, loyalty to the Society as shown by his great respect for it and his dislike of even the slightest criticism of it, loyalty to his Alma Mater and to his many friends as shown by his great interest in all that concerned them. His life had been a full one, in the classroom, in the army and on the mission.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 16th Year No 4 1941
General :
Seven more chaplains to the forces in England were appointed in July : Frs Burden, Donnelly, J Hayes, Lennon and C Murphy, who left on 1st September to report in Northern Ireland, and Fr Guinane who left on 9th September.
Fr. M. Dowling owing to the serious accident he unfortunately met when travelling by bus from Limerick to Dublin in August will not be able to report for active duty for some weeks to come. He is, as reported by Fr. Lennon of the Scottish Command in Midlothian expected in that area.
Of the chaplains who left us on 26th May last, at least three have been back already on leave. Fr. Hayes reports from Redcar Yorks that he is completely at home and experiences no sense of strangeness. Fr. Murphy is working' with the Second Lancashire Fusiliers and reports having met Fr. Shields when passing through Salisbury - the latter is very satisfied and is doing well. Fr. Burden reports from Catterick Camp, Yorks, that he is living with Fr. Burrows, S.J., and has a Church of his own, “so I am a sort of PP”.
Fr. Lennon was impressed very much by the kindness already shown him on all hands at Belfast, Glasgow, Edinburgh and in his Parish. He has found the officers in the different camps very kind and pleased that he had come. This brigade has been without a R.C. Chaplain for many months and has never yet had any R.C. Chaplain for any decent length of time. I am a brigade-chaplain like Fr Kennedy and Fr. Naughton down south. He says Mass on weekdays in a local Church served by our Fathers from Dalkeith but only open on Sundays. This is the first time the Catholics have had Mass in week-days

Irish Province News 17th Year No 1 1942

Chaplains :
Our twelve chaplains are widely scattered, as appears from the following (incomplete) addresses : Frs. Burden, Catterick Camp, Yorks; Donnelly, Gt. Yarmouth, Norfolk; Dowling, Peebles Scotland; Guinane, Aylesbury, Bucks; Hayes, Newark, Notts; Lennon, Clackmannanshire, Scotland; Morrison, Weymouth, Dorset; Murphy, Aldershot, Hants; Naughton, Chichester, Sussex; Perrott, Palmer's Green, London; Shields, Larkhill, Hants.
Fr. Maurice Dowling left Dublin for-Lisburn and active service on 29 December fully recovered from the effects of his accident 18 August.

Irish Province News 18th Year No 1 1943

Fr. Maurice Dowling was awarded substantial damages with costs in the action against Great Southern Railways Co. which came before Mr. Justice Hanna and a jury in the High Court on 4th November. It will be remembered Fr. Dowling met with his serious accident 18th August, 1941, when the bus in which he was travelling from Limerick to Dublin in order to report for active service was involved in a collision near the Red Cow, Clondalkin.

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 3 1948

Frs. Dowling and Gill will be leaving soon for the Lusaka Mission, N. Rhodesia.

Irish Province News 24th Year No 1 1949

Frs. Dowling and Gill who left Dublin for the Lusaka Mission, N. Rhodesia, on 7th October reached their destination on 4th November; for the present they are stationed at Chikuni and Lusaka respectively.

Irish Province News 24th Year No 3 1949

LETTERS :

Fr. M. Dowling in a letter from Chikuni Mission, N. Rhodesia :
He says there are now 282 boys in the Central Boarding School ; and 60 girls under the care of the Irish Sisters of Charity. All are native Africans, 95% baptised and but a few catechumens. The staff consists of Fr. M. Prokoph, Principal of the School, Fr. Dowling himself, Fr. Lewisha, an African, two Sisters of Oharity, an English laymaster, and four African teachers.

“I am teaching Religious Knowledge, Chemistry, General Science, History and Maths. My classes vary in number between 45 and 50. We are rather understaffed and so are kept busy. The top classes at present reach a standard equivalent to our Inter-Cert. There is also a course for Teachers, and a Trades School for carpenters and brick layers.
The mission depends on us for its Catholic teachers and the number of Catechumens depends on them too. The mission is very short of men and many are old and ill. Many of the Polish Fathers have been out here 20 and 25 years without a break.
Normally the rainy season begins here in October and lasts till March. This year it has been a failure. We have had 18 inches of rain instead of our usual 35-40 and there is grave danger of famine in all Central Africa. Famine has already begun in Nyassaland.
There are six different African languages spoken by different sections of the boys. All teaching above standard IV is in English. Many are quite good at English.
The weather is pretty hot, which I like but some don't. It has averaged 95 degrees in the shade for a long time recently. I have lost two stone since I came here and gone down from 16 stone to 14. You wouldn't know my slender form!”

Irish Province News 41st Year No 1 1966

Obituary :

Fr Maurice Dowling SJ (1896-1965)

Fr. Dowling's death was a great shock even for us on the mission. His operation had been successful, he was making a good recovery, and then the end came suddenly and unexpectedly in a heart attack. Rev. Fr. Superior, who was in Lusaka at the time, was called by telephone and was able to give him Extreme Unction and recite the prayers for the dying. He died during the prayers without regaining consciousness.
The funeral, preceded by Requiem Mass, took place on Sunday afternoon. He was buried in Chikuni, as he certainly would have wished, beside Fr. A. Cox and Fr. D. Byrne, and close to the founders of the mission - Frs. Moreau and Torrend. Fr. Dowling had known Fr. Moreau, he had been with him for a few months before his death in January 1949, and had anointed him before he died.
There was a very big attendance at the Mass and funeral, for he had made many friends during his seventeen years in the country. They came not only from the neighbourhood but even from Livingstone, Lusaka and Brokenhill. They included boys whom he had taught many years ago and who were now young men of importance in Government positions, Sisters and Brothers of several congregations to whom he had given retreats, and many priests both African and European. His Grace the Archbishop of Lusaka and His Lordship Bishop Corboy were also able to be present as they had not yet left for Rome.
In his panegyric during the Mass, Rev. Fr. Superior paid tribute to Fr. Dowling's great qualities, his deep spirituality and union with God, his great zeal for souls, his kindness and courtesy to all, his optimistic outlook even when things looked by no means bright. His life had been a full one, in the classroom, in the army and in the mission, and his reward must therefore be very great.
When Fr. Dowling came to Chikuni in 1948, there was only one secondary school for Africans in Northern Rhodesia, a Government school at Munali which had been founded ten years before. He played a big part in founding the second school, Canisius College. Speaking of his work in the college during the first few years, Fr. Prokoph, who had been instrumental in getting Fr. Dowling for the mission and who had been his principal, said of him: “I have never met a more loyal man”. He described how in the initial difficult days Fr. Dowling had stood by him on every occasion, always ready to help, never questioning a decision, absolutely loyal. Loyalty then would seem to have been the source of his strength, loyalty to God as a priest and religious, loyalty to his country as shown by his deep love of it, loyalty to the Society as shown by his great respect for it and his dislike of even the slightest criticism of it, loyalty to his Alma Mater and to his many friends as shown by his great interest in all that concerned them. He was a man of whom it can be truly said that it was a privilege to have known him and to have lived with him.

Death of a Jesuit Friend
The first intimation our family received on Easter Monday, 1916, that the Volunteers had risen, taken over the General Post Office and other key buildings, was when a neighbour, Mr. P. A. Dowling, Registrar of the College of Science, knocked at the door and excitedly told us the news.
This morning (2nd September 1965) I attended a Requiem Mass in the Jesuit Church, Gardiner Street, offered for the soul of Fr. Maurice Dowling, S.J, second son of the neighbour who rushed to us with the news of the Rising. Fr. Maurice, though he had undergone a serious operation some time ago, had, I under stood, made a good recovery and it came as a great shock to his relatives and friends at home to hear that he died suddenly last month in Zambia, on Friday, 27th August, and was buried the following Sunday.
As I take a look at the ordination card, printed in Irish, he sent me from Germany in 1929, I notice he died - 36 years later on the anniversary of his ordination.
Maurice and his brother Desmond (his senior by a year or so) were educated at Clongowes. After the death of their mother early in her married life, Mr. Dowling eventually married again and it was when he and his second wife came to live on Anglesea Road, a few doors from where we then lived, that the two families became friends. We, as children, came to know the second family very well, only meeting Desmond and Maurice at holiday time and, in any case, they were older than I was by six or seven years. That age gap makes a great difference in early youth, later on it does not.
I recall one incident in the boyhood of the future Jesuit perhaps never known to his step-brothers and step-sisters - to whom he was always devoted as they were young children at the time. I myself was about 10 or 11 years of age, I suppose, and it was Mrs. Dowling who related the incident to me :
Both families used to spend a month or two in Skerries in the summer. Maurice Dowling was a keen, strong swimmer and one morning he saved the life of a girl from drowning. He went home to lunch and never mentioned the incident. It was when the family had finished tea and Mr. Dowling was enjoying a read of the evening paper that he came across a paragraph or two describing the plucky rescue by his son. Passing no comment, he scribbled “Bravo!” about the paragraph and silently handed the paper across to his son.
But the future Jesuit, teacher, Army chaplain, African missioner, was no quiet, retiring youth in other respects. Of a natural bright, cheerful, optimistic disposition, he was immensely popular with both girls and boys of his own age.
As a young Jesuit he learned to speak Irish fluently, spending many a holiday in the Gaeltacht. But most important of all, he genuinely loved the language and when home on what was to be his last “leave” he was delighted to hear from me that there were in existence Irish-speaking praesidia of the Legion of Mary. He had a great admiration for Edel Quinn who had died working for the Legion in Africa and, if I recollect rightly, I gave him a copy of the prayer for her canonisation printed in Irish.
We only met him for a few hours on the rare occasions he came on holidays from Rhodesia. He was always very attached to his family, relations and friends. I could never keep track of all his cousins and friends he mentioned in conversation but I do remember the names of two friends, perhaps because I know both by sight, Fr. Leonard Shiel, S.J, and Very Rev. Fr. Crean, now P.P. of Donnybrook, but Head Chaplain in the last war in which Fr. Maurice also served as chaplain.
He loved to visit the home near Naas of his step-sister, Shiela and her husband, Paddy Malone, taking a great interest in their son and three daughters. The young man is now helping to manage the farm; one of the girls is in the Ulster Bank in Baggot Street, another is training as a nurse in St. Vincent's Hospital and the third is still at school.
Thus, another Irish priest dies in voluntary exile for love of the African people. Go ndeinidh Dia trocaire ar a anam.
Nuala Ní Mhóráin
From the Leader Magazine

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 126 : Christmas 2005

MISSIONED TO ZAMBIA : MAURICE DOWLING

Taken from some 50 “portraits” submitted by Tom McGivern, who works in the Archives of the Province of Zambia Malawi.

The family of Fr. Maurice used to spend a month or two of the summer in Skerries, a seaside resort in Co. Dublin. He was a keen, strong swimmer and one morning, as a teenager, he saved the life of a girl from drowning. He went home to lunch and never mentioned the incident. It was when the family had finished tea and Mr. Dowling was reading the evening paper that he came across a paragraph or two describing the plucky rescue by his son. Passing no comment, he scribbled “Bravo!” beside the passage and silently handed the paper to his son. This incident in some way sums up a characteristic of Maurice which developed at that age - modest in his achievements and helpful to others.

He was born in 1896. His father was the Registrar of the College of Science in Dublin. His mother died early in her married life leaving Maurice and his brother, Desmond, behind. Both boys went to Clongowes for their secondary education. At the age of 18, on August 18th 1914, Maurice entered the Jesuits at Tullabeg, and followed the normal course of studies followed by Irish Jesuits of the time. He was ordained on August 27th 1929. In the thirties, he spent some time in the colleges (e.g. the Crescent, Limerick) as teacher and prefect. As a young Jesuit, he learned to speak Irish, spending many a holiday in the Gaeltacht. He genuinely loved the language, and, when home on what was to be his last leave, he was delighted to hear that there were in existence Irish-speaking
praesidia of the Legion of Mary. He had a great admiration for Edel Quinn, who died working for the Legion in Africa.

Come the Second World War, Maurice volunteered as a chaplain. Just before departing, he was involved in an accident where he was thrown through the window of the bus in which he was travelling. As he lay on the ground in his own blood, he heard one of the rescuers say to another, as he nodded towards Maurice: “He's had it!” (but in much more colourful language). After the war, when the Jesuits in Northern Rhodesia were looking for men, two volunteered in 1946, to be followed by two more in 1947 - Maurice and Joe Gill. They came to Chikuni.

The Bishops had been endeavouring then to set up a Catholic Secondary school for Africans. There was only one secondary school for Africans in the whole country, a government school at Munali, which had been founded a few years before. In 1949 Canisius Secondary School opened its gates to the first class. Speaking of Maurice's work in the college during the first few years, Fr M Prokoph, who had been instrumental in getting Fr. Dowling for the mission and who had been his principal, said of him, “I have never met a more loyal man”. Fr. Prokoph described how in the initial difficult days, Maurice had stood by him on every occasion, always ready to help, never questioning a decision, absolutely loyal.

While at Chikuni he would travel south to Choma at the weekend to say Mass, long before the station was opened there in 1957; also to Kalomo still further south. Then back to the school for another week of teaching. In 1962 he went to the newly built mission in Namwala as the first resident priest, bringing with him some Sisters of Charity. Later, in 1964, he moved to Civuna.

Fr. Maurice had great qualities, his deep spirituality and union with God, his great zeal for souls, his kindness and courtesy to all, his optimistic outlook even when things looked by no means bright. He had a zest for life, his cheerfulness was catching. He was loyal, as Fr. Prokoph had remarked. Loyalty would seem to have been the source of his strength, loyalty to God as a priest and religious, loyalty to his country as shown by his deep love of it, loyalty to the Society as shown by his great respect for it and his dislike of even the slightest criticism of it, loyalty to his Alma Mater, and to his many friends, as shown by his great interest in all that concerned them. His life had been a full one, in the classroom, in the army, and on the mission.

Duffy, Anthony, 1848-1872, Jesuit scholastic

  • IE IJA J/1226
  • Person
  • 08 September 1848-27 December 1872

Born: 08 September 1848, Rahan, County Offaly
Entered: 06 September 1866, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 27 December 1872, New Orleans, LA, USA

Part of the St Joseph’s College, Springhill, AL, USA community at the time of death

by 1869 at Amiens France (CAMP) studying
by 1870 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1871 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying
by 1872 at Spring Hill College AL, USA (LUGD) teaching

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He had a brother who was a Priest and distinguished Preacher in the Meath diocese.

After First Vows he was sent to Amiens for Rhetoric, then Philosophy at Louvain and Stonyhurst.
1870/1 He was sent to New Orleans for Regency, and he died of a fever there 27 December 1872.
William Butler had been his companion in New Orleans Mission.

Egan, Eamon, 1923-1973, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/139
  • Person
  • 04 July 1923-11 August 1973

Born: 04 July 1923, Dublin
Entered: 06 September 1941, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1955, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1959, Leuven, Belgium
Died: 11 August 1973, New York NY, USA (in a drowning accident)

Part of Milltown Park community, Dublin at time of his death.
Died in boating accident in New York;
by 1959 at Louvain (BEL M) studying

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 48th Year No 4 1973
Loyola
The Province was well represented by Irish Jesuits at the memorial Mass held for Fr Eamon Egan at the parish where he had been on supply prior to his tragic death. Brian Grogan reports that the clergy and parishioners turned out in large numbers, and that the homily preached by the pastor emeritus was most eloquently delivered. Numerous tributes were paid to Fr Eamon, indicating the place he had gained in the hearts of many, though he had been with them only a brief while.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1974

Obituary :

Fr Eamon Egan (1923-1973)

Shortly before he left for the United States in July of this year Fr Egan said to a friend that now that he was fifty he must think about reorganising his life. A fortnight later he was dead. What he might have done in the years which he could reasonably have expected to lie before him is now, of course, a matter of futile speculation. The fact is that a freakish accident carried off some one who had already served his Province and, indeed, his fellow countrymen well; who was at the height of his powers and, to all appearances, seemed to have much more to give.
The circumstances of his death were almost grotesque, if for no other reason than that it is, at this moment, almost impossible to determine them precisely. What we know is that he was drowned by a freak storm off Rockaway Point, Jamaica Bay, New York Harbour. All the other occupants of the boat were rescued. What happened to Fr Egan is unsolved, but the most likely (and merciful) explanation is that he was knocked unconscious; for, though not a good swimmer, he could swim.

Eamon was the son of Robert Egan, the first news editor of The Irish Press. He was born in Dublin in 1923. He was sent to school at Scoil Mhuire, Marino where he attained a grasp of Irish which was eventually to bear fruit in a first class degree in UCD. He finished his secondary education at Belvedere. In 1941 he entered the noviciate at Emo Park. There then followed the usual sequence of studies : Rathfarnham, where he distinguished himself as a debater; Tullabeg, where he again distinguished himself in the, now defunct, disputations (circles and menstrua); teaching in Belvedere and Galway; theology in Milltown. He was ordained in 1955.

After his tertianship in Rathfarnham, Eamon was assigned to Tullabeg to teach rational psychology. However, it was decided that he should first acquire a doctorate, so he was sent to Louvain for two years, which ultimately extended to three. He returned to Tullabeg in 1961, his doctorate still unfinished, and began to teach philosophy.

In 1963 the Visitor closed Tullabeg as a house of philosophy and Eamon, joining the ranks of displaced persons, found himself in Milltown. In 1964 he was appointed to teach philosophy in Mungret. This was something which he took to with all his heart, the work and atmosphere being congenial. When the Institute of Philosophy and Theology was set up in Milltown he became a member of the staff and taught, with great success and flexibility, courses in the history of ancient and medieval philosophy and the philosophy of man (formerly rational pyschology).

While in Milltown he began to come more and more into contact with the outside world. He was invited to teach foundation courses in philosophy at Maynooth and did so with great success. He became the guiding figure in the Irish Philosophical Circle which included philosophers from Trinity College and Queen's, Belfast, when, in its early days, it was threatened with extinction. Thanks to Fr Eamon’s astute advice the Circle not only survived but emerged into tranquil waters as the Irish Philosophical Society of which, at his death, he was the chairman. In the enormously successful Milltown lectures he was one of the most popular lecturers and chairmen.

Among the subjects of these lectures he was assigned some facets of Père Teilhard de Chardin's much discussed thought. Eminently a perfectionist his own exacting standards impelled him to seek an intimate acquaintance with Père Teilhard's work. He shared the reserve of the Society generally towards his author's ideas but he was more sympathetic possibly more understanding, to them than most. With his exceptional sense of impartiality he was able to present them in such a way as to be recognised as a key exponent in the Teilhard debate.
More important, he came increasingly to be a spokesman on Marx to Marxist groups as an informed but not, again, un sympathetic critic. He was also a member of an ecumenic group that met once a month.

There were occasions when he appeared positively perverse but his endearing ingenuousness and honesty, pursuing truth quocum que duxit, and the humorous, to the observer, hesitancy that betrayed his sensitiveness won instant condonation for his ebullitions. It may be admitted he had not yet attained that equipoise that the years which alas were not to be would give. Dolor atque decus!

In spite of his intellectual ability and success as a lecturer Eamon Egan published very little. That is not unusual in the Irish Province, but in Fr Egan’s case it was due to a paralysing self depreciation. He was incredibly diffident. After delivering a brilliant lecture or course of lectures, which would have more than satisfied most other people, he would be genuinely dissatisfied, That is not to say that his lectures could not be unsatisfactory; at times they went over the heads of his listeners and at other times he tended to debate with himself in public, but in most cases his dissatisfaction was totally unfounded.

He was most scrupulous about giving his students the effort and time he believed they deserved. Indeed, his attitude to life in general verged on the scrupulous. He would reproach himself for laxity in circumstances where others might not be aware that there was any problem of conscience.

To those who have lived and worked closely with Fr Egan over the years his sudden death has been a shattering blow and his loss is likely to be more rather than less keenly felt a stime goes on. In varying degrees this loss will be felt within the Province, particularly among the younger members, and in the wider circle of those who had come in contact with him. Though in years he was middle-aged, in mind he was not only young but he had that elasticity which can compass the problems and aspirations of the present time. He was a man for this season. They are not numerous. His loss is therefore all the greater.

We add an appreciation from The Irish Times of August 22nd; we sincerely thank the editorial staff for their courtesy in allowing a reproduction :

“Many of us even outside his immediate family circle felt in expressibly bereaved as we met to render our last respects to Father Eamon Egan, who had died in a boating accident outside New York at the age of 50. At the Mass for him in St. Francis Xavier's Church, Gardiner Street, Dublin, which preceded the interment, a lovely service instinct with Christian hope and faith and love. Father Doyle, Rector of Milltown Park, where Father Egan taught philosophy, spoke for us all in recalling his gentleness and sensitivity, his kindness and integrity.
Eamon can, I think, have had no adequate idea of the affection and regard with which he was held by those who knew him. By some miracle, he had come through untouched by a pretension, all too common among clerics, however cloaked. Never gauche, he was diffident.

His thoughtfulness for others could sometimes become anxious, and occasionally fretful, concern, yet he was too firmly grounded in the Christian faith to allow that to govern his thought or conduct for long. For a man capable of identifying with so very many different sorts of people, his own life was in ways curiously patterned and predictable. He could at times seem conservative to a fault; basically, however, he was courageous and well balanced, refusing (just to take a few instances) to be over impressed by Lonergan, on the one hand, yet still very typically, on the other hand, showing himself warmly if critically appreciative of his controversial fellow-Jesuit, Teilhard de Chardin.

His characteristic attitude was open-hearted and generous, and he did good almost by stealth. Those of us privileged to know him loved his shy smile, his patience, his friendly humanity, his intellectual honesty, his refusal to impose a particular interpretation or conclusion on anyone, And may I say, as one not of his communion, how deeply I appreciated the naturalness with which he brought us, his friends, to God in occasional simple acts of wor ship. Prayer to him was like breathing.
In iothlainn Dé go gcastar sinn. Ba de bhunadh Bhaile Átha Cliath Éamon, ach bhí Gaeilge aige, agus i nGaeilge a labhraíodh sé le mo leithéidse i gcónaí nuair a bhímís i dteannta a chéile.

Ba bhall de Chumann na Sagart é. Canadh 'Ag Críost ag Síol' ag an Aifreann an lá a cuireadh é. Sin rud ba dheas leis."

Risteárd Ó Glaisne

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1974

Obituary

Father Éamonn Egan SJ

Fr Éamonn Egan, who died so tragically in New York harbour last Summer, was a man, to put it simply, that it is good to remember. Most writers of obituaries face the dilemma of trying to tell the truth and yet be kind to the one who has passed away. But with Éamonn Egan no such problem arises. For he was a very unusual man, pos sessing two qualities that rarely go together, an ice-clear mind and a tender heart. People admired his mind, so quick to see a problem, utterly fair in argument, always seeking the truth, but they loved the heart, so sensitive to the feelings of others, and identifying totally with them, especially in times of trial.

It was his power of clear thinking, articu lated so fluently, that made him a great teacher of philosophy both at Mungret and Milltown Park. He was the centre of the philosophy school in Mungret during the early 1960s and he won the unlimited admiration of the philosophers, not all of whom would have been satisfied with anything less than the best. I remember him often saying that the standard there was higher than at the Jesuit philosophy school in Tullabeg, where he had been a professor until its closure. It was never clear to me whether this remark was intended as a compliment to Mungret or a slight to Tullabeg! It is only fair to add that Eamonn never felt quite at home, teaching in the secondary school division of Mungret. He was a man destined for success, amongst minds more mature than is normal, or perhaps desirable, in the schoolboy world.

I once went on holiday with him, when we were both in Mungret. It was in one of those modest seaside boarding houses that flourished and indeed still flourish, in the west of Ireland. The hostess never adver tised, but the same families, very pleasant, but by no means unsophisticated, came there every year. In a matter of days; Eamonn was the most popular man in the house. This was, in part, due to his much admired talent for painting, but above all to his charm of manner, which was the outward expression of his natural feeling for people. He was so lacking in conceit, that when I pointed out his social success, he seemed both astonished and annoyed.

Those Mungret men now working as priests all over the world who had the privilege to be his students, will, I know, never forget him. I am certain that they are united in sympathy with his relatives and countless friends in Ireland, who still mourn such a tragic loss. May he rest in peace,

KF

Egan, Matthew, 1872-1941, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1254
  • Person
  • 08 July 1872-09 July 1941

Born: 08 July 1872, Melbourne, Australia
Entered: 01 February 1888, Xavier Melbourne, Australia
Ordained: 1903
Final Vows: 15 August 1906, Xavier College, Melbourne, Australia
Died: 09 July 1941, St. Vincent's Hospital, Fitzroy - Australiae Province (ASL)

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

Transcribed HIB to ASL: 05 April 1931

by 1898 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1905 at St David’s, Mold, Wales (FRA) making Tertianship
by 1906 returned to Australia

◆ 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 St Patrick’s College Melbourne and finally at Xavier College Kew, where he gained honours in Classics at the matriculation exam. he then entered the Society at Xavier College in 1888.

1890-1891 He was a Junior at Loyola College Greenwich.
1891-1897 He was sent to St Aloysius College Sydney and Xavier College Kew for Regency
1897-1900 He was sent to Leuven Belgium for Philosophy
1900-1904 He was sent to Milltown Park Dublin for Theology
1904-1905 He made Tertianship at St David’s Mold, Wales.
1905-1921 he returned to Australia and was sent to Xavier College, teaching senior classes and was also Prefect of Studies (1906-1907)
1921-1927 He was sent teaching to St Patrick’s College Melbourne
1927-1935 He was sent to Corpus Christi College Werrribe, teaching Philosophy, Greek, Geology and Sociology. He was also Spiritual Father here and in 1932 was examiner of quadrennials, edited the “Jesuit Directory”, was a Consultor of the Vice-Province. In 1933 he was also the book censor for the Vice-Province.
1936-1941 In his final years at Loyola Watsonia and the Hawthorn Parish he was in ailing health, but he still gave Retreats, examined Ours, and became secretary to the Provincial and Archivist for the Vice-Province. He also assisted the editor of the “Messenger”, writing a series of articles on social questions.

He was a man of encyclopaedic knowledge and extraordinary ability, and he used these gifts to the full in the service of others. Utterly unselfish, he never seemed to give a thought to his own comfort or entertainment. His recreation was his work. He was a non-smoker and total abstainer. He was also kindness itself, and was greatly loved by all who came into contact with him. During his last three years he lived a hard life, as he was suffering from cancer that required many operations. He was never heard to complain about his illness.

He was one of the most brilliant and learned Jesuits to have worked in Australia, He was particularly well versed in the Classics and in Philosophy and made himself an authority in Sociology at a time when the subject was not a passport to fame or fortune. He wrote many articles on the social apostolate, especially during 1917-1919, making special contributions to the short-lived periodical “Australia : A Review of the Month”. His articles focused on social and economic issues, but also, in his “Notes and queries”, he responded to various questions arising from contemporary life. His articled included :
International Socialism; Wages?; Cooperation?; Religion and Progress; Catholic Action; Race, Culture and Morality; Miracles and Law; Sex Education; Social Study in Schools; Private Judgement; The New Democracy; Faith and Knowledge; Religion and Spiritism; Catholics and Public Life; The Church and the Bible; Unjust Methods of Profits.

He was a deeply spiritual man and it is noteworthy that in every house he served after his ordination, he was made Spiritual Father. His great gifts were somewhat marred by a painful shyness, which made it very difficult for him to take part in public meetings or discussions, and therefore somewhat reduced his potential impact. Those who did know him rated him very highly, but he was not as well known as he might have been.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 17th Year No 1 1942
Obituary :
Father Matt Egan

After a long and trying illness, borne with the greatest fortitude Rev. Matthew Egan, SJ., passed to his eternal reward on Wednesday night, July 9, at St. Vincent's Hospital. An outstanding member of the Jesuits in the Archdiocese of Melbourne, he has left a fine record of faithful service in the various institutes to which he was attached. He will be greatly missed by his colleagues, who held him in the highest regard, and by the hundreds of students who came to love him in the classroom.
Born in 1872 Fr Egan was educated at St. Patrick's College East Melbourne, and Xavier College, Kew, and at both schools he stood out as a, student of exceptional ability. He studied philosophy and science for three years in Louvain, Belgium, and theology in Dublin, where he was ordained to the priesthood. Two years after his ordination, he returned to Australia, where he spent the greater part of his remaining life on the staff of Xavier College and St Patrick’s College, with periods at Corpus Christi College, Werribee, and the Jesuit Novitiate, Watsonia, and latterly in the Immaculate Conception Parish, Hawthorn.
He had an insatiable appetite for work, and even when he was suffering great pain he wished to continue. He made a close study of social questions, and his expositions, which revealed him as a deep thinker and a wide reader, were much appreciated by his colleagues and students. He was indeed. a distinct ornament to the Society. His memory will be long cherished by those who were fortunate enough to have been closely associated with him. Of a retiring disposition and very charitable, he never refused a request for a service that was in his power to render, no matter how troublesome it might be to himself. His recreation was his work. He never darkened the door of a picture theatre or other place of entertainment, and he never went to a cricket or football match, or ever looked for a holiday. In addition, he was a total abstainer and a nonsmoker.
During the last three years, Fr. Egan lived the life of a martyr, and underwent several surgical operations. He bore his sufferings with inflexible patience and courage, and was never known to murmur.
Solemn Office and Requiem Mass for the repose of the soul of Fr Egan were celebrated in the Church of the Immaculate Conception Hawthorn, on Friday morning. There was a large and representative congregation, including members of religious teaching; Orders, Ladies of the Grail, college prefects, and pupils of St. John's School, Hawthorn, and representatives of the Old Xaverians' and Patrician Associations and various parish organisations.
His Grace Archbishop Mannie presided at the Requiem Mass. Preaching the panegyric, his Grace the Archbishop said “The prayers of the priests and people are most earnestly requested for the repose of the soul of Fr. Matthew Egan, S.J. I am not surprised that there should be a large gathering of the faithful and clergy to pay this last tribute to Fr. Egan. Like me, I think you are confident you are farewelling one who undoubtedly is a saint. If there be anybody for whom we can confidently say that his awakening was with Christ and his repose in peace, we can say it of Fr. Egan.
We have come, of course, to show sympathy with his relatives and with the Order to which he belonged, and of which he was such an ornament. But while we sympathise with them very warmly, I think we all feel that it is a relief as it were, and almost a joy that Fr. Egan’s long purgatory in this world should come to an end. Only for the skilful care of his medical attendants and the unremitting attention of the Sisters and nurses at the hospital, Fr. Egan would have long since gone to his reward. Many times during his illness I saw him and never once did he give the smallest indication that he had the least suffering. Other people talk of their illness and their symptoms, but with Fr. Egan everything seemed to be taken from the hand of God with absolute resignation and with almost a joy that to me seemed to be preternatural or supernatural. I have never known anybody in my experience, at all events, who suffered so much and suffered always without complaint. Fr. Egan has had a comparatively long life. He was one of those who, in spite of indifferent health, at all times never spared himself. Indeed, he was at the beck and call of anybody who needed his assistance. Whoever came to Fr. Egan looking for help, which he could well give, he always threw himself into whatever he was asked to do with a thoroughness that left no misgivings, and one could be sure that he had put his best into any work that was given him to do. When he had given a solution to any problem that had been placed before him, one could rely upon getting a sound and impartial judgment. He was a man of great parts, of wide learning and wide reading, and he had sound judgment, on which anybody could with confidence rely. I am sure that the students who studied under him will be amongst those who will regret his passing. But yet, like us all, they will feel that Fr. Egan had done his work, and that he had through his sufferings, so heroically borne, atoned for any faults in his own life,, and that also, by his sufferings, he had helped to bring mercy upon those whom he assisted. He helped his own Order and the hospital in which he was so tenderly nursed, and he helped us all by his prayers that were constantly on his lips and heart, and by the sufferings which he went through for many months and years. The Jesuit Fathers have lost one of their brightest ornaments. He was one, I suppose, amongst the pioneers of Australian apostolates for the Jesuit Order, and he certainly gave an example which all those who come after him may well follow. He is a loss to the teaching staff of the Jesuit Order, for which he gave great service in Corpus Christi College and other places. However, his work is done. and he has gone to the place where we hope one day we will meet him once again”.

Egan, Michael, 1875-1961, Jesuit priest

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

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

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1900 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

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

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

Irish Province News 11th Year No 2 1936

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

◆ Irish Province News 36th Year No 3 1961 & ◆ The Clongownian, 1961

Obituary :

Fr Michael Egan (1875-1961)

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

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

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

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

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

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

Everard, William, 1559-1590, Jesuit scholastic

  • IE IJA J/1265
  • Person
  • 1559-12 November 1590

Born: 1559, Leuven, Belgium
Entered: 29 December. 1578, Leuven, Belgium - Flanders Province (FLAN)
Died: 12 November 1590, Milan, Italy - Venetae Province (Vem)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
Died 12 November 1590 (Biblioth. de Bourg. Ms. 6397, lib i - Defunct in variis Provinciis)

Fahy, John, 1874-1958, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/143
  • Person
  • 05 February 1874-25 January 1958

Born: 05 February 1874, County Galway
Entered: 07 September 1891, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 10 August 1909, Valkenburg, Netherlands
Final Vows: 02 February 1911, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 25 January 1958, St Ignatius College, Manresa, Norwood, Adelaide, Australia

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05 April 1931

Father Provincial of the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus : 22 February 1922-1931.
John Keane was Vice Provincial for [six] months while Fr Fahy was in Rome from Sep. 1923 – [Feb.] 1924.
Vice Provincial - Australian Vice-Province 05 April 1931

by 1904 at Valkenburg, Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1906 at Leuven, Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1913 at Linz Austria (ASL) making Tertianship
Provincial 25 February 1922
Vice-Provincial Australia 05 April 1931

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Note from Thomas Maher Jr Entry
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.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
Early education was at Coláiste Iognáid Galway before Entering at S Stanislaus College Tullabeg 1891.

He studied in Ireland, Netherlands and Belgium and was Ordained 1909.
1912-1913 He made Tertianship at Linz Austria
1914-1919 He was at Belvedere College, Dublin as Prefect of Studies [then Rector]
1919-1920 He was appointed Rector of Mungret College Limerick
1922-1931 He was appointed Provincial of the Irish Province
1931-1947 He was appointed first Vice-Provincial of Australia, after which he became Master of Novices and then Tertian Instructor (1941-1947)
1947-1958 He was sent to St Ignatius College Norwood as a curate, and he died there.

He was held in such high esteem that he attended four General Congregations of the Society of Jesus, the last of which was in 1957, and this was a record in the Society.

He was one of the most remarkable men to have worked in Australia. During his Provincialate in the Irish Province he built the Rathfarnham Castle Retreat House and Juniorate, and the Irish Mission to Hong Kong was established. In Australia he built Loyola College Watsonia during the depression years, and later Canisius College Pymble.

He was a typical administrator with strength to complete his vision. He did not find decision making difficult. He was also a shy, reserved man, with whom it could be difficult to make light conversation. Some found him forbidding and lacking personal warmth. But, he was a solidly spiritual man and very understanding of one’s problems once rthe ice was broken. He probably found it hard to simply be an ordinary Jesuit in community once he left high office, but he did try to be genial and affable. It was probab;y also difficult for ordinary Jesuits to relate to him in any other way than that of his being a Superior.

Note from Jeremiah Sullivan Entry
The province liked him more than either his predecessor, William Lockington, or his successor, John Fahy

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

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 7th Year No 2 1932
Australia :
Fr J. Fahy, late Irish Provincial, and first Provincial of the new Vice-province of Australia, tells us about impressions made on him by the people of his new home
“I have been in this country about a month, and ever since my arrival I have been really amazed at several things. One of them is the amazing progress and power of the Catholic Church in Australia. We had heard in the Old Land, and had frequently read about your doings, about your love for the Faith, your devotion to your pastors,but really the sight of what you are doing far surpasses anything that we read in our newspapers.
Another thing that surprises me is the readiness of many to help the next man, that I am told, is a characteristic of the Australian people.
Not many days ago I was leaving Sydney and I had a letter to post. It was raining fairly heavily, and as I was going to the station by car. I thought I would stop and risk getting wet while rushing into the Post Office. I had just pulled up at the herb when a man rushed out from a near by doorway, and, though he did hot know who I was, and no doubt did not care, said “ Don't come out into the rain, I will post your letter for you.” That, I think, is typical of the prompt readiness with which the average Australian desires to help his fellows.

Irish Province News 20th Year No 2 1945

Australia :
Fr. John Fahy, Provincial of Ireland 1922-23), was appointed Tertian Instructor of the Vice-Province of Australia, this year, and began work on February 15th. The Long Retreat, made by fourteen Fathers, commenced soon afterwards.

Irish Province News 21st Year No 4 1946

GENERAL CONGREGATION :

Letters :

Fr. John Fahy, to Fr. Vice-Provincial, 10-9-46 :
“Your three Electors are flourishing, notwithstanding a fierce sirocco which has been burning the Romans ever since our arrival. All the Electors have now arrived, with the exception of four : Lithuania, Romania, Croatia and one German. To-morrow we begin our quattriduum, all - I think - feeling confident of Divine Help and Guidance. Rome is filled with men and women, all come for General Chapters, so we live in an election atmosphere”.

Province News 33rd Year No 2 1958

Obituary :

Fr John Fahy (1874-1958)

Fr. Fahy was born and brought up in Galway. He got his early education at St. Ignatius' College and entered the Society in, 1891.
In 1893 he went to the Juniorate at Milltown Park. In the following year, when I went there, I began to appreciate more and more his unselfish kindness and readiness to help, and his clearness and accuracy of mind. In some ways he was exceedingly simple. For instance, in the autumn of 1895, Fr. Sutton, who had just taken over the command of Milltown Park, summoned a meeting of Theologians and Juniors, proclaimed a severe code of laws, and invited questions. The theologians proceeded to ask a number of very ingenious questions, each tending to confuse the issues more and more, and to make our obligations less and less clear. The one person (apart from Fr. Sutton) to whom it would not appear that this result was intentional was John Fahy. He stood up and said : “Father, in order to be perfectly clear, is it this, or this, or that?” And, of course, it was that; all the clouds were swept away, and John was quite unconscious of the furious glances directed at him!
Towards the end of 1895, the Juniors were transferred to Tullabeg, and Mr. Fahy went with them to teach Mathematics and Physics. He remained with them until 1898, when he was sent to teach the same subjects at Clongowes. In 1901 he returned to Tullabeg as “Min. Schol. Jun”, and Prefect of Studies of the Juniorate.
In 1903 he went to Valkenburg in Holland, then the house of Philosophy of the German Province; Bismarck's ban on the Society was still in force in Germany. In 1905 he went to Louvain for Theology, was ordained in 1908, finished his course the following year, and went to Linz for his Tertianship in 1909-10. He left everywhere a high reputation both for character and scholarship. On his return to Ireland in 1910, the Provincial, Fr. William Delany, wanted to make him Master of Novices. This caused him much alarm, and he persuaded Fr. Delany to look elsewhere. He was sent to Belvedere, first as Prefect of Studies, then as Minister and in 1913 as Rector. His time in Belvedere, ending in 1919, was a period of steady advance in the fortunes of the College.
One day during the rising in Easter week, 1916, some of the front windows of Belvedere were shattered by a volley from a company of soldiers in Great George's Street. Fortunately the community were at lunch, and the refectory was at the back of the house. Fr. Fahy opened the hall door, walked down to the soldiers and explained to them the mistake they were making. He also pointed out some other houses, such as the Loreto Convent, from which they need not fear any sniping. He also, during those days, drove a number of food vans, whose ordinary drivers shrank from coming into the zone of fire.
In 1919 he was appointed Moderator of the Mungret Apostolic School, and in the following year he became Rector of the College. In 1922 Fr. General appointed Visitors to all the Provinces of the Society, and Fr. W. Power, Visitor to Ireland, appointed Fr. Fahy Provincial.
His Provincialate (1922-31) was a period of considerable advance for the Province and of much promise for the future, a promise which, God be thanked, is being realised. In the early days of his generation, foreign missions were for us little more than a fairy tale, true, no doubt, but remote from experience. Fr. Fahy, when the prospect of the Hong Kong mission appeared, succeeded in conveying his own enthusiasm to the Province. In choosing a Superior he looked for and found a man of courage and enterprise who was ready to go ahead and take risks. A few years later the question of taking on a district in China itself arose at a Provincial Congregation. China was being overrun by the Japanese at the time, and there was much confusion. of opinion. When everyone else had spoken, Fr Fahy stood up in his turn. He made no attempt to press his point, but very simply stated the case as he saw it. He got a practically unanimous vote. The same thing happened when the question arose of making the Australian mission independent of the Irish Province. Nobody, Australian or Irish, seemed to know what to think. Once more when, Fr. Fahy had spoken the vote was unanimous. I think it was on that occasion that Fr. Thomas Finlay remarked : “That's the greatest Provincial I have known”.
When the Australian mission became first a Vice-Province and then a Province, Fr. Fahy was its first Superior. Under his guidance it made remarkable progress, which it has continued to make under his successors; in fact, in spite of the very satisfactory increase in the numbers of the Province, it is difficult to find men to fill all the openings that present themselves.
He conducted a Visitation of the Philippines which, I have heard, bore excellent fruit.
In recent years he had been acting as a curate, and it is said that the children in the streets used run to greet him; which shows that his generous and kindly heart had succeeded in conquering his reticence. The feeling of his brethren towards him was shown by their electing him, at the age of eighty-three, to represent them at the General Congregation.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John Fahy SJ 1874-1958
The name of Fr John Fahy is revered not only in the Irish and Australian Provinces, but throughout the Society in general.This reputation he acquied from his participation in Genereal Congregations. It was remarkable how in any discussion, Fr Fahy would sum up the matter in dispute in a few clipped, concise words, and give a solution, which always won approval and carried the day.

He was born in Galway in 1874, and educated at St Ignatius, entering the Society in 1891. The greater part of his studies were done abroad.

When Fr William Power was made Visitor to the Province in 1922, he appointed Fr Fahy provincial. His term of office lasted until 1931, and during that time great expansion took place. We acquired our foreign Mission in Hong Kong, the retreat House at Rathfarnham was built, Emo Park was bought and a great increase in the number of novices took place. Fr Tom Finlay said of him “that was the greatest Provincial he had ever known”.

When Australia became a Vice-Province in 1931, Fr Fahy went out there as Superior. The rest of his life he devoted to Australia, as Superior, Master of Novices, Master of Tertians.

In 1937 he was appointed Visitor to the Philippines.

At the age of 83, he was chosen by his brethren in Australia to represent them at the General Congregation.

After such a life of outstanding work for God and the Society, he died on January 25th 1928. He was a man of great judgement, of vision, of courage and constancy in carrying out what he had planned.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1958

Obituary

Father John Fahy SJ

Fr John Fahy who has died in Australia was successively during the years 1910 to 1919, Prefect of Studies, Minister, and from 1913, Rector of Belvedere, His time here. in these various offices was a period of steady advance in the fortunes of the house.

We are told that one day during the rising in Easter Week, 1916, some of the windows of Belvedere facing George's Street were shattered by a yolley from a company of soldiers. The Community were at lunch in the back of the house and so, fortunately, no one was hurt. Fr Fahy opened the hall door, advanced towards the soldiers and explained to them the mistake they were making. He also pointed out some other houses, such as the Loreto Convent, from which they need not fear Sniping. During those troubled times he frequently drove a number of food vans, whose ordinary drivers shrank from entering the firing zones.

In 1922 he was appointed Provincial of the Irish Province. He held this office until 1931. During those years he made many important decisions, chief among which were the foundation of the Mission in Hong Kong, the decision to make the Australian Mission independent of the Isish Province. In matters such as these he was clear headed and decisive. It was as a result of such an occasion that Fr Tom Finlay declared about Fr. Fahy: “That's the greatest Provincial I have known”.

When the Australian Mission became first a Vice Province and then a Province, Fr. Fahy was its first Superior. Under his guidance it made the remarkable progress, which it has continued to make over the years; in fact, in spite of the satisfactory increase in numbers of the Province, it is difficult to find men to fill all the openings that present themselves.

In recent years he had been acting as a Curate and it is said that the children in the streets used to run out to greet him when he appeared; which goes to show that his kindness of heart had at last conquered his characteristic reticence. At the age of eighty-three the seal was placed on his life of service to the Society of Jesus, when his brethren showed their confidence in him by electing him to represent them at the General Congregation.

Field, Thomas, 1549-1626, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1288
  • Person
  • 1549-07 July 1626

Born: 1549, Limerick
Entered: 06 October 1574, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Died: 07 July 1626, Asunçion, Paraguay - Paraguayensis Province (PAR)

Alias Filde

Son of Dr Field and Genet Creagh
1569 There was a Thomas Field Penitentiary of English, Irish and Scots (is this he?)
1575 In April he and Fr Yates left Rome for Brazil arriving 1577. Fr Yates describes him in a letter as “Yrishe man”
1577 in Portugal ???

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
Son of Dr Field and Genet (Janet) née Creagh (Creah)
In 1586 he was captured and “evil-handed” and manacled by English pirates, put out in an open boat with no rudder or oars and drifted away to Buenos Ayres.
He was one of the three first missioners of Paraguay; of great innocence of life and alone in Paraguay for years.
He is erroneously called a Scot by Charlevoix and an Italian by Franco
(cf Cordara “Hist Soc” AD 1626 and in Foley’s “Collectanea”, p253 there is an interesting letter about him in 1589 by Fr Yates)
Alias “Felie”
Humanities at Paris, Philosophy at Louvain, graduating MA before Entered 06/10/1574 Rome
28/04/1575 Went on pilgrimage with James Sale, an Englishman from Rome to Galicia, and from there to the Brazils without having taken First Vows.
He spent many years in Brazil with Joseph Anchieta (Apostle of Brazil, styled Thaumaturgus) and was his emulator. Ordered from Brazil to Paraguay. After incident above with pirates, he died in Asunçion, Paraguay. (cf "Hibernia Ignatiana" and Oliver, Irish Section, Stonyhurst MSS)
Letter from Fr John Vincent (vere Yates), a Missioner in Brazil, to Fr John Good, dated, St Anthony's Brazil, 02 January 1589 (British Museum Lansdown MSS). he calls him by the alias name of “Thomas Feile” :
“News of Father Thomas Feile are these. Since that I wrote your Reverence of him in my other letter, in 1586 he was sent from St Vincents with three others of our company into a country far from here, which they call Tumumâ, near unto Peru, at the petition of the Bishop of that place unto our Provincial of this Brazil land; and in his way by sea near unto the great River Plate, they were taken by an English pirate named Robert Waddington, and very evil handed by him, and robbed of all those things they carried with them. The which pirate afterwards, in the year of 1587, came roaming along this coast from thence, until he came unto this city, the which he put in great fear and danger, and had taken it that if these new Christians of which we have charge, had not resisted him, so that one hundred and fifty men that he brought with him, he left unto three score slain. On this matter in other letters, I doubt not but that your Reverence shall hear. To return now to the news of Father Thomas Feile, I do give you this knowledge of him that he was very unapt to learn this Brazil speech, but he did always edify us with his virtuous life and obedience to all those with whom he was conversant, unto whom I have sent the letter your Reverence did sent him, and with the same, I sent unto him his portion of the blessed grains and images which came unto my hands, as also the roll of countrymen that be of our company. Whilst he was in this Brazil land, he took not only the holy order of Priesthood, as I do hear he took in the same place where he is now resident, which is as far as Portugal from hence”
(cf IbIg; Oliver, Irish Section, "Stonyhurst MSS")
1574 Left Portugal for Brazil arriving at Bahi in 31 December 1577
Spent 10 years as scholastic living in Piratininga (São Paolo), often accompanying Fr Anchieta on his missionary tours among the Indians

◆ Fr John MacErlean SJ :
1587 Sent to Paraguay (escaped death by pirates after his ship was captured off Buenos Aires)
He spent time at the Mission of Córdoba de Tucuman (Argentina) and then went to Asunçion (Paraguay).
He and Fr Ortega evangelised Indians for hundreds of miles around Asunçion
1590-1599 Founded a Church in Villa Rica, Paraguay
1599 Recalled to Asunción, and the Missions at Villa Rica and Guayra were abandoned until the Province of Paraguay was formed in 1607, and he returned there then.
Eventually returned to Asunción ministering to the Indians until his death in 1626

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Field (Fehily), Thomas
by Patrick M. Geoghegan

Field (Fehily), Thomas (1546/9–1625), Jesuit priest and missionary, was born in Limerick, in 1546 or 1549, son of a catholic medical doctor, William Field (or Fehily), and his wife, Genet Field (née Creagh). Because of his religion he was sent for his education to Douai and then Louvain, in the Low Countries, and finally to Rome, where he entered the Society of Jesus on 6 October 1574. He trained for the priesthood before being sent on an important mission to Brazil. Travelling from Rome to Lisbon, he was forced to beg along the way, before beginning the long journey to South America in 1577.

In Brazil he worked with the Spanish Jesuit José de Anchieta (1534–97), who was credited with performing many miracles. In 1586 he was one of five Jesuits sent from Brazil on a mission to convert the peoples of La Plata province. During the voyage the group was captured by pirates, some of them Irish pirates who treated Field with utter contempt, despising his catholic zeal. In the end he was put into an open boat without rudder or oars and set adrift, but he survived and arrived safely in Argentina. He is believed to have been the first Irishman to set foot in Argentina and may also have been the first to go to Brazil.

When he arrived at Buenos Aires it had been in existence just seven years and comprised only a dozen houses. With Manuel Ortega as his superior he was sent on a further mission to Paraguay, where he baptised thousands, and was responsible for the conversion of many. He tended to the sick during the great fever epidemic in South America in 1588 and was respected for his hard work and dedication. A man of great piety and humility, as penance he denied himself the use of fruit on the trees. He died 15 April 1625 at Asuncion among the peoples of La Guira, Upper Paraguay.

Henry Foley, Records of the English province of the Society of Jesus (1877), i, 288; Edmund Hogan, Chronological catalogue of the Irish members of the Society of Jesus, 1550–1814 (1888), 5; Thomas Murray, The story of the Irish in Argentina (1919), 1–8; Aubrey Gwynn, ‘The first Irish priests in the new world’, Studies, xxi (1932), 212–14; ODNB

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Thomas Field SJ 1549-1626
Fr Thomas Field was born in Limerick in 1549 and entered the Society at Rome in 1574. He was attached to the Portuguese Province and from there left for Brazil, arriving at Bahia on 31st December 1577. He spent ten years as a scholastic in what is now known as Saõ Paolo, but made frequent journeys among the Indians with the Venerable Fr Anchieta during these years.

He was transferred to Paraguay in 1587, and on the voyage, narrowly escaped death at the hands of English pirates, who captured his ship off Buenos Aires. He proceeded,to Asuncion, where with Fr Ortega he evangelised the Indians for hundreds of miles around. In 1590 he built a Church at Villa Rica which became his headquarters for the next nine years.

In 1599 he was recalled to Asuncion, and the Mission at Villa Rica was abandoned until Paraguay was made a Province in 1607. He then returned to the scene of his former labours and worked among the Indians until his death in 1626.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 45 : Christmas 1986

Portrait from the Past

FR THOMAS FILDE : 1548/9-1626

Edmund Hogan

The Limerick Jesuit who was one of the founders of “The Mission” - currently showing at Dublin's Adelphi Cinema.

“On the 6th of October, 1574, Thomas Phildius, a Limerick Irishman, twenty-five years of age, enters the Novitiate. His father, Willian, was a doctor of medicine and his mother was Genet Creah. Both his parents are dead. He studied humanities for three years at Paris and Douay, and philosophy for three years at Louvain, where he became Master of Arts... under his own hand - Thomas. Phildius”. So wrote Thomas Filde in the Roman Novice-Book.

Thomas was born at Limerick in the year 1548, or 1549, of Catholic parents, at whose house he most probably often saw the Nuncio, Father Woulfe, S.J., who resided at Limerick in those days. In order to preserve his faith, Thomas was sent to study at Paris, Douay and Louvain; and he was received into the Society in Rome by the General, Everard Mercurian. He showed such advancement and solidity in virtue, that, after six months in the Novitiate, he obtained leave to go on the Brazilian mission.

With four Jesuit companions, he set sail joyfully on the “Rio de Janeiro”, and, after a prosperous voyage, came in sight of South America. They were in the Rio de la Plata and felt free from all fear of the English sea-rovers, when they discovered two sails, which were those of the cruel corsair, Cavendish. The English boarded the Portuguese merchantman, treated the passengers and crew with some humanity, but wreaked all their fury on the Jesuits. The pirates confided them to the mercy of the waves in a boat without rudder, oars, or sails, and left them to be tossed about and die of hunger in these wide waters.

Against all human expectation they drifted into the port of Buenos Ayres. When it was heard at Cordova that they had reached Buenos Ayres, almost dead with hunger and cold, they were met by the Bishop of Paraguay, who pressed them to go to Asuncion, where their Brazilian speech was well understood. Filde, de Ortega (a Portuguese) and Saloni (a Neapolitan) held a consultation, in which, after fervent prayer, they resolved to go to Paraguay, the language of which they spoke. They travelled nine hundred miles partly by land, partly by the Argentine and Paraguay Rivers, evangelizing as they journeyed on, and on August 11th, 1588, they reached a place nine miles from the town of Asuncion. The Governor of the province and other gentlemen went out to meet and welcome them The Indians seeing the respect of the Spaniards for those priests, conceived a high opinion of them, which grew greater when they considered the sympathy which the Fathers showed for them, the zeal with which they instructed them, the courage with which they protected them from Spanish oppression, and the disinterestedness and devotedness with which they had come so far, and through so many dangers, for the sole purpose of saving their souls. The neighbouring Indians hearing of these three holy nen went to see them, and were delighted to hear them speak the Guarani language.

But as the Spaniards were in a sad state in and around the town, the Fathers set to work at once to reform them, preaching to them, catechizing, hearing confessions, often spending whole days and nights in the tribunals of mercy, and scarcely ever allowing themselves more than one or two hours' rest. They converted the whole town. Then they turned to the Indians in and around Asuncion; instructed them, administered the sacraments to them; on Sundays and feast-days they got them to walk in procession, singing pious Guarani hymns. They then visited two distant Indian villages, and evangelized them, and after that Fathers Filde and de Ortega went and preached the Gospel through all the Indian tribes from Asuncion to Ciudad Real del Guayra, and produced most abundant fruit.

At about ninety miles from the first Indian village lived a barbarous race, in almost impenetrable forests and among rocks almost inaccessible. They were brave and robust; but never worked, and spent their time dancing and singing The Fathers sent two Christian natives to them with presents, and with promises of good things if they came out of their fastnesses to them; and in the meantime they prayed fervently that God would draw these poor people towards them. Their prayers were heard, and the head cacique came, with some of his men, dressed in war-paint of various colours and wearing long flowing hair, which had never been cut, with a crown of high plumes on his head. These savages were at first very shy in presence of the two strangers, but were soon attracted to them by the kindness of their looks and actions: they were converted, and promised to lead a good life and to prevail on the rest of their tribe to do likewise. The cacique was induced to remain with the Fathers, while his attendants and forty Indians recently baptized were despatched to bring out the members of his tribe. At the end of a fortnight, they brought with them three hundred and fifty men, women and children, who seened on the verge of starvation. Many children died of hunger the day of their arrival, after receiving the Sacrament of Baptism; the survivors were formed into a pueblo, were baptized, and led a holy and happy life.

The Jesuits baptized many pagans, performed the ceremony of marriage for many Spaniards and many Indians who had been living in a state of concubinage; instructed those ignorant of religion, extinguished long-standing animosities, and put an end to many scandals. The townspeople were so edified by their virtues, that they pressed them to remain and wanted to found a house of the Society in that place. But Fathers Filde and de ortega did not wish to narrow their sphere of action, and, at the end of a month's mission there, they went forth again to pour the treasures of grace on other parts of the province; they evangelized the numerous tribes between Ciudad Real and Villa Rica, baptized all the infidels who dwell along the banks of the Rio Hiubay, banished drunkenness and polygamy from among them, protected them against the oppressions of the Spaniard; and after many hardships and labours reached Villa Rica, and were there received with great solemnity. Triumphal arches were put up and the most fragrant flowers of that delightful country were displayed to do them honour. With military music and singing and other demonstrations of joy and welcome, they were conducted in procession to the church, where they declared the object of their mission. They remained four months at Villa Rica, working with untiring zeal, instructing the Spaniards whom they found ignorant of the truths and practices of religion, and doing all in their power to put in the souls of the colonists sentiments of mercy and kindness towards the poor Indians whom they were accustomed to treat as slaves.

After their apostolic labours at Villa Rica, the two Fathers went forth and converted a nation of ten thousand Indian Warriors, Indios de guerra, called Ibirayaras, who for clothing were contented with a coat of war-paint, and delighted in feeding on the flesh of their fellow-man. The Fathers had the happiness of rescuing many prisoners from being fattened, cooked, and eaten by these cannibals. They then baptized three thousand four hundred of another tribe; but before the work of conversion, Filde's companion narrowly escaped being murdered, and thirty of their neophytes were put to death by some wicked caciques. The two missioners had been often deliberating about going back to Asuncion; but as the inhabitants of Villa Rica built a church and residence for
them, they remained there for seven years longer.

In 1593, Father Romero was sent as Superior of the mission of Tucuman; he brought nine missioners with him, ordered Fathers Filde and de Ortega to continue their work in the Guayra territory, and sent Fathers Saloni and de Lorenzana to their assistance. On the 3rd of November, 1594, these two started from Asuncion, and reached Fathers Filde and Ortega at Villa Rica on the feast of the Epiphany, 1595. In this journey of over five hundred miles, they narrowly escaped being drowned in the Parana, and had often to make their way by swimming, or by wading through marshes and flooded fields. Swimming seems to have been one of the useful, and even necessary, arts of these early missionaries. We are told it of three of them, but not of Filde, who, being born and brought up on the banks of the Shannon, was skilled in the art of natation, and of driving and directing a “cot” or canoe through the water.

Fr. Filde was the sole representative of the Society in the countries of Tucuman and Paraguay until 1605 when he was joined at the residence of Asuncion by Fathers Lorenzana and Cataldino. The former wrote to the Provincial of Peru: “We found in our house, to the great comfort and joy of his soul and of ours, good Father Filde, who in spite of his infirmities has gone on with his priestly work and by his religious spirit and his dove-like simplicity (simplicidad columbina), has edified the whole town very much for the last three years. His is never done thanking God for seeing his brethren again in this far-off land".

In 1610, two Italian Jesuits made their way to Villa Rica, and found there the sacred vessels and the library which belonged to Fathers de Ortega and Filde. In the month of February they went up the River Paranapane, or “River of Misfortune”, to the mouth of the Pirape; they knew from the cacique who guided them with what joy they would be received by the native neophytes of Filde and de Ortega, and the moment they entered the lands of the Guaranis, they were net and welcomed with effusion in the name of the two hundred families whom these first missionaries had evangelized, and to whom the new-comers were bringing the blessings of civilization and liberty. On the very place that witnessed this interesting interview, Fathers Macheta and Cataldino founded the first “Reduction” of Paraguay, which was the model of all those that were formed afterwards.

In 1611, there was a burst of popular indignation against the Jesuits on account of their efforts to abolish slavery. They were “boycotted”, and could not get for charity or money anything to eat. No one would sell them anything. A poor old Indian woman, knowing their wants and the implacable hatred the Spaniards bore them, brought them some little thing to eat every day; but the other Indians had been turned against their best friends by the calumnies of the Spaniards. The Fathers withdrew to a country house in the village of Tacumbu; yet not liking to abandon the place altogether, they left Brothers de Acosta and de Aragon to teach school and Father Filde to say Mass for them. Here the Limerickman spent the last fifteen years of his life.

In 1626, Thomas Filde died at Asuncion in the seventy-eight or eightieth years of his age, and the fifty-second of his religious life, during which he spent about ten years in Brazil and forty in the missions of Paraguay, of which he and de Ortega were the founders.

Finn, Cornelius, 1910-1993, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/658
  • Person
  • 07 November 1910-

Born: 07 November 1910, Mallow, County Cork
Entered: 01 September 1928, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1939, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1978
Died: 29 August 1993, Manresa, Toowong, Brisbane, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05/04/1931

◆ 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 Mungret College Limerick, and he lived in the Apostolic School there, where boys interested in priesthood lived. he Entered the Society in 1928 at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg.

1930-1933 After First Vows he was sent to Rathfarnham Castle to study at University College Dublin, majoring in Latin and English.
1933-1936 He was sent to Leuven for Philosophy where he also learned French and Flemish
1936-1938 He was sent immediately from Leuven to Innsbruck for Theology, where he learned German as well and made the acquaintance of Karl Rahner.
1938-1940 As war was begin in Europe he was brought back to Milltown Park Dublin to complete his Theology, and was Ordained there in 1939.
1940-1941 He made Tertianship at Rathfarnham Castle under Henry Keane, the former English Provincial.
1941-1942 He spent this year in Liverpool at a parish awaiting a ship to Australia. He finally made the journey, but it was a dangerous trip, involving dodging German submarines, but he and his Jesuit companions arrived safely.
1943-1949 He was appointed Minister of Juniors at Loyola Watsonia where he remained for seven years. He was like by the Scholastics for his youth - only 33 years of age - and he was full of bright ideas and encouragement. He taught English, Latin and French there. He was also a great raconteur and rarely lost for a word. He was also engaged in giving Retreats at Watsonia to many groups who passed through Loyola. His cheerful presentation of the spiritual life had a wide appeal.
Among his innovations at the Juniorate was the introduction of a course in education (pedagogy) to prepare Scholastics for Regency. To prepare himself for this course he undertook a Diploma in Education himself at University of Melbourne, which included a six week training at Geelong Grammar School. He also instituted a Summer School on education for the Scholastics, inviting various experts to come and address them.
1949-1950 He began an MA himself at University of Melbourne focusing on the influence of the Spiritual Exercises on the poetry of Gerard Manley Hopkins. However at this time he was also appointed Dean of Students at Newman College left him not time to complete this MA.
1950-1952 He was appointed Rector at Aquinas College, Adelaide and was expected to develop this College. A stately home was purchased at North Adelaide and a new residential wing erected. By 1952 Aquinas had 40 resident students and 50 non-residents. During this time he also tutored students in French, English, Latin and Philosophy as well as carrying out chaplain duties. By the end of that year he had something of a breakdown and was given a rest.(1952-1953)
1953-1960 He was considered to have recovered his health sufficiently to be appointed the founding Rector at St Thomas More College in Perth. During 1954 he was expected to fundraise for new buildings there and this proved difficult. Meanwhile Archbishop Prendiville asked him to take over a new Parish at Attadale, where land hand been donated for a Jesuit school. He supervised the building of a parish school, St Joseph Pignatelli. By 1955 he was relieved of his parish duties to focus exclusively on the Newman College, which was due to open in March 1955. While unable to effect much influence on the grand design of the College, he did see to some of the finer details, such as the stained glass windows in the Chapel, the work of the Irish artist Richard King. He gave the College its motto “God's Servant First”, chose the first students and welded them into a community.
He was a very energetic chaplain to the Newman Society, holding the Annual Catholic Federation of Australia conference in 1958 - the first time for Perth. For some years he conducted “The Catholic Answer” programme on radio, and he continued to be in demand for Retreats and sermons. Overall he spent six years at this work.
1960-1968. He returned to Loyola Watsonia, somewhat tired to resume his former work as Minister of Juniors and Retreats. He spent much of these years between Loyola Watsonia and Campion College, including being appointed Rector at Campion for a new community for Scholastics attending University at the Dominican House of Studies in Canberra.
1969-1973 He began his long association with Corpus Christi College at Werribee and Clayton. It was to last 17 years. There he did what he had usually done, teaching English together with Liturgy and Scripture, and giving Spiritual Direction and retreats.
Between the end of Werribee and Clayton, he was given a sabbatical year in 1972, taking courses in San Francisco, Glasgow, Ireland and Rome. He was preparing for a position at the Catholic Education Office in Sydney helping teachers with catechetics. He took up this position in 1973 and resided at St John’s College.
1974-1986 His work at Clayton began in 1974. His first years were as Spiritual Director and then as Moderator of the Second Year students. This role involved tutoring. Students experienced him as quiet, diffident even, but sincere with integrity and deep spirituality.
1986 Following retirement his health and confidence deteriorated. After a year at Thomas More College and the Hawthorn Parish he spent his last four years at Toowong, where the climate was more suitable. He would return to Hawthorn and Queenscliff during the more oppressive Brisbane summers.

He was remembered for his Irish wit, his friendliness, his kindness, his wisdom and gentleness as a spiritual director, his “marketing” of the “discernment of spirits”, his preaching and his zeal in promoting vocations to the Society. he was a man of many talents but very humble.

Note from Michael Moloney Entry
Michael Moloney came to Australia as director of the retreat house at Loyola College, Watsonia, and worked with Conn Finn, 1964-66.

Fitzgibbon, Michael, 1889-1973, Jesuit priest

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

Born: 29 September 1889, New Street, 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.

Fitzpatrick, Daniel, 1910-2001, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/661
  • Person
  • 27 October 1910-07 July 2001

Born: 27 October 1910, Belfast, County Antrim
Entered: 01 September 1928, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 27 August 1939, Leuven, Belgium
Final Vows: 15 August 1973
Died: 07 July 2001, Nazareth House, Camberwell, Melbourne - Australiae Province (ASL)

Part of the Campion College, Kew, Melbourne, 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 :
He is remembered as a very cheerful man with irrepressible zeal. he was born in Belfast and his father was an engineer who died on the famous Titanic when Daniel was very young. He was sent to Mungret in Limerick for his education. He had very fond memories of Mungret, especially his Jesuit teachers, like Mattie Bodkin, who had a significant influence on him. He entered the Society at Tullabeg and enjoyed the quiet country life there.

1930-1933 he was sent to Rathfarnham Castle for Juniorate at UCD, graduating with a BSc (Hons) in Physics and Chemistry. During that time (1931) he had already been assigned to the new Vice Province of Australia, and he was happy about that.
1933-1936 He was sent to Valkenburg Netherlands for Philosophy
1936-1940 He was sent to Leuven Belgium and Milltown Park Dublin for Theology, being Ordained at Leuven just seven days before the start of WWII.
1940-1941 He made Tertianship at Rathfarnham Castle Dublin.
1943-1948 He was eventually able to get passage to Australia. He went with three other Jesuits, and that journey came the stuff of folklore due to the hazardous nature of their journey. Because of the constant threat of German U Boats, they only travelled at night and very close to the African coast. The journey took five months. He arrived in Melbourne and was sent to St Patrick’s College to teach Chemistry and Religion. He also agreed to teach Science at Xavier College Kew in the afternoons after a morning at St Patrick’s., and for two years was Prefect of Studies at St Patrick's (1944-1946). he also managed to teach Science at the Presbyterian Ladies College in Victoria Parade. he liked teaching the girls and also the fact that this was an ecumenical venture.

1949-1972 He was sent permanently to Xavier College Kew and taught six classes of Chemistry every day with no laboratory assistant. His commitment to his students was very high, and he would greet them cheerfully each day in a crisp white coat. He was highly regarded as a teacher, thorough, organised and convinced of discipline in learning. He demanded very high standards, did not like indiscipline and not much escaped him. Many recall him saying his rosary on the top verandah overlooking the chapel. While doing this he observed everything below and this formed the basis for many conversations with students. he may have been exacting, but he prepared many of his students for scientific studies at the University.

As well as a full class schedule he also had a weekend supply at Ferntree Gully, and during summer holidays he gave eight day Retreats.

1972-1986 At the age of 62 he embarked on a very different stage in his life. He had hoped to do Retreat work in Asia, ideally i Malaysia with Irish Jesuits, but this plan failed when he was unable to gain a permanent work visa. So he went to Hong Kong for work. The Catholic Port Chaplain had suddenly resigned and he was asked to fill in temporarily. This ministry lasted thirteen years when he was 75 years old.

With his natural cheerful and helpful style he won many friends among seafarers from many nations, Philipinos especially, but also Goans, Poles and Russians. He gave time to all and enjoyed their company. He loved people. He would set out daily into Hong Kong Harbour, scaling ladders to board ships, which he admitted was sometimes dangerous in rough seas. Talking to the men, making them feel at home, he would regularly promise to write to their family giving them news. This custom he continued for the rest of his life, especially at Christmas. He even made trips to the Philippines to meet the families of those men, enjoying the free service of Cathay Pacific Airlines or ships belonging to Swires. When off ship he was to be found in the Mariners’ Club where he socialised with everyone and presented the Faith in a very concrete and persuasive way, talking through people’s doubts and troubles with very convincing ease. He was apostolic and ebullient, often breaking into song and poetry. He formed good relations with the Anglican Port Chaplain and his wife, and they shared common experiences. he revelled in this life.

He was a very family oriented man, and when his mother died, he brought his step-brothers and sister to Australia, settling them into accommodation and schools and keeping an eye on them. After his return from Hong Kong, he would visit his sister on a Saturday night, and then go to the community. This was very important for both he and his family cherished.

1986 When it became difficult for him to board ships, it was time for him to make a third change in his life. He decided to return to Australia, and there he began a ministry to the sick and dying at Caritas Christi Hospice in Kew, and this he continued until the end of his life. From 1986-1989 he lived a Burke Hall, and from then on at Campion House.

He retired early each night and rose at 3am. After some prayers he went for a morning walk around Yarra Boulevard. He made this walk again in the afternoons, always with a rough walking stick. He went to the Hospice each morning and visited some before Mass and then others after Mass. he would then come back in the afternoons. He was very regular. his appearance was unique. He was small i stature and wore a big flannel check shirt with a baseball cap and sneakers, and baggy shorts in the summer. In winter the baseball cap was replaces with a Russian fur fez with earmuffs. his attitude was one of having time for all because everyone was special.

As he grew older his eyesight deteriorated, and just after his 90th birthday he fell and broke his hip in the hospice. They looked after him well at caritas and he learned to walk again, now visiting patients in his pyjamas. Eventually he accepted the move to Nazareth House, Cornell Street, Camberwell, Melbourne saying that there would be some work for him there.

He lived life to the full and had no fear of dying. He had a very strong faith and used joke that when he got to Heaven he would spend his first days running about looking for his father. He loved company but was never dependent on it. He loved sharing his theological and spiritual insights, or how the laws of Science helped him have a deeper understanding of the works of God in the universe. He would often reflect on the Goodness of God towards him, especially the gifts of nature and its wonders. He could see unity in diversity as he gazed at the night sky.

He was a great companion, one with whom it was easy to form friendship. It was claimed that one Irish Jesuit was a visitor to him at the Mariner’s Club. The two men were complete opposites, his visitor being rigid and fearfully conservative. However, they became good friends. He was also a great letter writer, keeping in contact with the may people he had met in his long life.

He was also obsessively ordered in his own personal life. His room was spotless, everything in its place, and pride of pace being given to a model of the Titanic. He had an infectious chuckle, especially as he held a glass of his favourite tipple in his hand. “What did the policeman say to the kleptomaniac - You better take things quietly”. Laughing at his own joke, he was oblivious to the fact he had told it on numerous occasions.

He had a joyful and adventurous spirit, and peace with himself, man and God. His zeal for finding new ways to minister to people in need with such commitment, his love of family and friends, was a powerful legacy to all who knew him.

◆ 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 Séamus Doris Entry
He was good friends with Harry Naylor, Joe Mallin and Dan Fitzpatrick.

FitzPatrick, James, 1613-1651, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1296
  • Person
  • 1613-16 May 1651

Born: 1613, Abbotstown, Co Dublin
Entered: 01 July 1639, Mechelen, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: January 1643, Louvain, Belgium
Died: 16 May 1651, Galway Residence

Alias Patrick

Parents John and Janetta (Janella) Cosgroe of Malahide or Mulhuddart
Studied Humanities and Philosophy in Ireland
Admitted to Society by Fr Robert Nugent November 1638
1650 Catalogue DOB 1614 - has taught , was Procurator and now Minister. Is a Catchiest and Preacher
1650 ROM Catalogue Age 36. Admitted Mechelen 01 July 1639, did 4 years Theology and now Minister at Galway Residence

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Patrick or Fitzpatrick (also called Patricii)
DOB 1614 Dublin; Ent 01/07/1639 Mechelen; RIP post 1650
Studied Humanities and two years Philosophy before Ent. He knew Irish, English, Flemish, French and Latin.
Studied four years Theology in Society
Taught in the lower schools for four years, was procurator for five years, Confessor, Catechist, and in 1650 Minister (HIB Catalogue 1650 - ARSI)
1642 Procurator of Irish Mission in Galway (Mercure Verdier Visitor’s Report on Irish Mission)
His death is mentioned in a letter dated 25/11/1694 (Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS and Foley’s Collectanea)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of John (a farmer of Abbotstown) and Jenetta née Cosgrove
Early education was at Mulhuddart and then Humanities at Kilkenny and Dublin. he had also finished Philosophy, probably under the Jesuits before Ent 01 July 1639 Mechelen. He was accepted for the Society by Robert Nugent the November before he arrived at Mechelen.
After First Vows he was sent to Louvain for Theology and Ordained there c January 1643
1645 Sent to Ireland having completed all studies and assigned to Galway to teach.
1646 Showing no real aptitude for teaching he was appointed procurator of the house, and was also involved in Catechising and Preaching until his death there 16 May 1651.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
PATRICK, JAMES. In Pere Verdier s Report of the 20th of June, 1649 I find that F. Patrick was then about thirty years old, of which he had spent nearly ten in the Society, and was then filling the office of Procurator to his Brethren in Galway. He is mentioned as being dead in a letter dated the 25th of November 1694.

Fitzsimon, Christopher, 1815-1881, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1308
  • Person
  • 03 July 1815-24 June 1881

Born: 03 July 1815, Broughall Castle, Frankford, County Offaly
Entered: 13 April 1834, Hodder, Stonyhurst, England - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 10 September 1843
Final Vows: 02 February 1852
Died: 24 June 1881, Stonyhurst, Lancashire, England - Angliae Province (ANG)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Early education was at Downside OSB and then at Stonyhurst.

After First Vows he did studies and Regency at Stonyhurst, and began Theology.
1840 Sent to Louvain for Theology, and Ordained at Liège 10 September 1843.
1844 Sent to Stonyhurst for some studies and teaching. 23 September he was appointed Professor of French, Greek and Roman History as well as Prefect of Juniors.
1846 He continued at Stonyhurst, teaching French and History and as Confessor to the Juniors, and by 1847 was also president of the Sodality.
1849 He became a Missioner at Stonyhurst.
1850 Sent for Tertianship at Liesse, France.
1851 He returned to his work at Stonyhurst, and was then appointed Socius to the Provincial 1851, serving Fathers Etheridge, Johnson and Thomas. Until 08 August 1860.
1860-1863 Returned to his former work in Stonyhurst, and by 1862 was also Minister and Prefect of Juniors.
1863 He was appointed Vice-Rector of St Beuno’s and Prefect of Studies.
1864 He was appointed Rector and Master of Novices at Roehampton and a Consultor of the Province.
1869 He was sent to Beaumont as Spiritual Father and President of the Sodality.
1871 He returned to Stonyhurst again as Minister, Spiritual Father and President of the Sodality.
1875-1878 Sent as Spiritual Father to the London Residence.
1878 He was sent to Holy Name Manchester as Missioner and Spiritual Father. here he was attacked by cancer of the face and head, the roots of which had been present for more than thirty years. After a long and agonising illness of many months, borne with superhuman patience, he died a holy death at Stonyhurst 24 June 1881, aged 66, and on the feast of John the Baptist and the Sacred Heart , to whom he was so devoted.

FitzSimon, Henry, 1566-1643, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1297
  • Person
  • 31 May 1566-29 November 1643

Born: 31 May 1566, Swords, County Dublin
Entered: 13 April 1592, Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 1596, Louvain, Belgium
Final Vows: 04 October 1610
Died: 29 November 1643, County Kilkenny

Parents Nicholas FitzSimon and Anne Sedgrave
Cornelius Lapide was a fellow Novice
Studied Humanities at Manchester - being an MA before Ent
Studied 3 years Philosophy 1 year Theology at Pont-á-Mousson
Studied 3 years Theology at Louvain
1596-1597 Taught Philosophy at Douai - gave the Bollandists the Life of St Feichín and other MS
1603 Tertianship at Tournai
Then 4 (or 20?) years as Military Chaplain at Castris
1608-1611 Called to Rome regarding Irish Mission and remained there till 1611. Then sent back to Douai for 5 years writing and confessing
1619 at Liège and 1625-1628 at Dinant
1625 published at Frankfurt a 12 mo on Philosophy of 704pp. It appears that he was an SJ from “Palface” and that such was not a real name - was it a Holy word? Or was it “Fitzsimon” or “White” or “Kearney”? P396 shows he professed at Douai. Hogan thinks it is “Fitzsimon” (Foley "Collectanea" p 524)
1630 To Ireland (7 years, 2 free, 5 captive)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
Son of Sir Nicholas, Kt and Senator of Dublin, and Ann née Sidgreaves
Early education was at Manchester School, and then matriculated at Hart’s Hall Oxford, 26 April 1583. He then studied for four years at at Pont-à-Mousson, graduating MA, followed by some months at Douai in Theology and Casuistry, and received Minor Orders.
He was received into the Society by the BELG Provincial Manaereus and then went to Tournai.
After First Vows he was sent to Louvain for Theology and was a pupil of Father Lessius there. He also taught Philosophy for a while.
1597 At his own request he was sent to the Irish Mission. His zeal soon led to his arrest in 1598.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Sir Nicholas and Anna née Sedgrave
Early education was in England and he matriculated to Oxford - though unclear if he graduated there.
He drifted into or was enticed into Protestantism, becoming a convinced one. In 1587 he went to Paris where he met the English Jesuit, Darbyshire, who reconciled him to the Church. He then went to study at Pont-à-Mousson where he graduated MA, before Ent 13 April 1592 at Tournai
After First Vows he studied Theology at Louvain where he was Ordained 1596
1597 Initially he was sent to teach Philosophy at Douai. However, as an Irish Mission was under consideration Henry was chosen to be part of this venture, and duly arrived at the end of 1597. He was based roughly in the Pale, and established a reputation for zeal and success in arresting the growth of Protestantism, and in encouraging the Catholics of the Pale to stand firm in their allegiance to the Catholic Church. His most powerful weapon in this ministry was the Sodality of the Blessed Virgin.
1599-1603 Arrested in December, 1599 he was imprisoned in Dublin Castle at the end of May 1603. Even from his prison cell his influence was felt and he debated theology with bitter opponents of the Church such as Ryder and Hanmer who visited him in prison.He was released and then deported back to the GALL-BEL Province.
1603-1608 He was based at Douai and for five years was an Operarius, a Military Chaplain and a Writer, as well as making his Tertianship.
1608-1611 Sent to Rome to advise on Irish Mission affairs.
1611-1618 He was sent back to Douai and continued his earlier ministries of Writing, Military Chaplaincy and Operarius
1618-1620 He was sent to follow the same ministries at Liège
1620-1623 At the outbreak of the Thirty Years War he left Belgium to minister to Irish soldiers in the Imperial Army (Hapsburgs), and was with them until 1623
1623-1631 Was at Dinant, and by 1628 had served twenty years as a Military Chaplain
1631 He sent to Ireland after a thirty one year exile. Over the preceding decades he repeatedly sought permission to return, but the Mission Superior (Holywood) decided that Fitzsimon's return if discovered by the Government could only jeopardise if not ruin the works of the Irish mission. On return he lived at Dublin as Confessor and Preacher until the surrender of Dublin and expulsion of priests. After a difficult time he eventually arrived in Kilkenny, where he died 29 November 1643

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

Fitzsimon, Henry (1566–1643), Jesuit priest and controversialist, was born on 31 May 1566 at Swords, Co. Dublin, son of Nicholas Fitzsimon, merchant, and alderman of the city of Dublin, and Anna Fitzsimon (née Sedgrave), one of the Sedgrave family of Killeglan and Cabra, Co. Dublin. She was related to Henry Ussher (qv) and James Ussher (qv), both of whom were later Church of Ireland primates. Henry Fitzsimon's paternal grandfather was Sir Knight Fitzsimon.

In 1576 Henry went to England for his education, where he converted to protestantism. He studied grammar, rhetoric, and humanities in Manchester for four years, and on 26 April 1583 he matriculated for Hart Hall, Oxford. By 1587 he had moved to Paris, where he carried out further studies. He also encountered an English Jesuit, Fr Thomas Darbyshire, and after instruction from him, reconverted to the catholic faith. Entering the university at Pont-à-Mousson, he studied rhetoric and philosophy, graduating MA (1591). Further theological studies followed, both there and at Douai, and, taking minor orders, he was admitted to the Society of Jesus at Tournai (April 1592). He completed his noviciate in Tournai and in June 1593 he went to Louvain to complete his theological studies, where he associated with prominent counter-reformation theologians such as Dr Peter Lombard (qv) and Fr Heribert Rosweyde. Appointed as professor of philosophy at Douai, he also began to collect manuscripts with the intention of writing a history of Ireland.

In 1597 he was sent to Ireland at his own request as a member of the first Jesuit permanent mission to the country. He travelled in the company of Fr James Archer (qv), who was being sought by the English authorities, and this made life extremely dangerous for him. Nevertheless, he concentrated his work in the Dublin area, where the greatest efforts were being made to convert the local population to the protestant faith. He began preaching in public, often to large crowds, and was successful in reconverting many catholics who had converted to protestantism. Touring the county of Dublin, he called on prominent catholics, exhorting them to remain loyal to their faith. A catholic nobleman also gave him the use of a house, which he converted into a chapel where he celebrated high mass. The atmosphere in Dublin was so tense at the time that many men came armed to mass, determined to resist any attempts to arrest them.

Fitzsimon was a flamboyant character by nature and rode around the city and county with three or four retainers. Openly hostile to the government's religious policy, he was arrested in 1599, and in many ways his imprisonment served to enhance his public status. Many protestant divines came to his cell to debate points of religion and it soon became known that he was more than a match for them. Among those who debated with him were Dr Luke Challoner (qv), Dean Meredith Hanmer (qv), Dean John Rider (qv), later bishop of Killaloe, and an extremely young James Ussher (qv). These debates resulted in further written exchanges. In January 1601 he sent a manuscript to Dean Rider entitled ‘Brief collections from the Scriptures, the Fathers, and principal protestants, in proof of six catholic articles’. Rider published an answer to this manuscript in 1602 entitled A caveat to Irish catholics. Fitzsimon in turn replied to Rider's Caveat in a manuscript, which he sent him in 1603, Rider publishing his pamphlet Rescript in response to this in 1604. These exchanges only served to create a friendship between the two men, and Rider not only later acknowledged Fitzsimon's superior debating skills, but also began to send him food, drink, and other comforts. Among those who petitioned for Fitzsimon's release was Hugh O'Neill (qv), and in March 1604 James I signed an order that he be freed. In June 1604 he left Dublin and travelled into exile on the Continent.

He spent periods in Spain and Flanders, and in 1608 travelled to Rome. Most of his publications date from this time and he established himself as one of the most erudite minds of the counter-reformation. In 1608 he published A catholick confutation of Mr John Rider's claim to antiquitie and a calming comfort against his Caveat etc., which was printed in Rouen as a last exchange in his debate with Rider. Attached to this publication was another pamphlet, An answer to sundrie complaintive letters of afflicted catholics. By 1611 he was also writing an ecclesiastical history of Ireland, ‘Narratio rerum Ibernicarum’, which, if ever completed, was not published. Later publications included The justification and exposition of the divine sacrifice of the masse (Douai, 1611) and Britannomachia ministrorum in plerisque et fidei fundamentis, et fidei articulis dissidentium (Douai, 1614), a defence of catholic doctrines and a refutation of theories of reform. In 1619 he edited Catalogus sanctorum Hiberniae, published in Liège.

In 1620 he travelled to Bohemia as a chaplain to the forces of Emperor Ferdinand II, later publishing a history of the campaign using the pseudonym ‘Constantius Peregrinus’. He volunteered to return to the Irish mission and travelled in 1630 to Ireland, where he resumed his work among the poor of Dublin. After the outbreak of the 1641 rebellion, he was condemned to be hanged on suspicion of being involved with the rebels. He spent his last years on the run from government forces, finally reaching the relative safety of the confederate camp in Kilkenny. Worn out by work and hardships, his health finally broke and he died in Kilkenny on 29 November 1643.

His papers and writings have remained a focus of interest for historians of the period. Edmund Hogan (qv), SJ, included many excerpts from his papers in his publications on Henry Fitzsimon, and in 1881 edited a collection of Fitzsimon's papers, publishing them under the title Diary of the Bohemian war. This included Fitzsimon's An answer to sundrie complaintive letters of afflicted catholics under the new title Words of comfort to persecuted catholics. There is a large collection of Fitzsimon's papers in the Jesuit archives in Dublin.

Webb; Allibone; Edmund Hogan, SJ, Life, letters and diary of Father H. Fitzsimon (1881); id., Distinguished Irishmen of the sixteenth century (1894), 196–311; Dictionary of catholic biography; James Corboy, SJ, ‘Father Henry Fitzsimon, SJ’, Studies, xxxii (1943), 260–66; Louis McRedmond, To the greater glory: a history of the Irish Jesuits (1991); information from Fergus O'Donoghue, SJ, of the Jesuit archives, Dublin

◆ James B Stephenson SJ The Irish Jesuits Vol 1I 1962
FATHER HENRY FITZSIMON SJ 1566-1643

Henry Fitzsimon was born at Swords on the 31 May 1566. His father Nicholas, a Dublin alderman and an eminent merchant of his day, was the son of Sir Knight Fitzsimon. His mother was Anna Sedgrave or Edgrave, and he was related to Henry and James Ussher, both of whom where afterwards Protestant Primates of Armagh, At the age of ten Henry Fitzsimon went to England, where he lost the (faith) and became a zealous Protestant. On the 26 April 1583, he matriculated as a member of Hart's Hall, Oxford. It is not known how long he remained here; but after a few years we find him in Paris, where according to himself he was “so farre overweening of my profession, that I surmised to be able to convert to Protestancie any incounter whosoever ..... At length by my happiness I was overcome by F.Thomas Darbishire ane owld English Jesuit long tyme experienced in the reduction of many thowsands to the Catholic religion”.

After his conversion in 1587 he went to the University of Pont-à-Mousson, where he studied rhetoric and philosophy, becoming. a Master of Arts in 1591. On the 15 April 1592, he entered the Society of Jesus, Having spent only fifteen months in the novitiate of Tournai, he was sent to Louvain in 1593 to finish this theological studies, where he had already begun before his entry into the Society of Jesus. Here he made such great progress, under the able supervision of the famous Fr Lessius, that in a short time he was appointed professor of philosophy at Douai. Here also he made the acquaintance of Fr Rosweyde, the pioneer of the future Bollandist Fathers, and Dr Peter Lombard. In his writings he frequently recalls these two scholars as having been intimate friends. At this time, already interested in Irish history, he says that he “ransacked all the libraries in his way for our country's antiquities, and found a hand-written life of St Patrick in the library of our college at Douai”. He remained at Douai until his return to Ireland towards the end of 1597.

To appreciate the value of Fitsimon's work in Ireland, we must review briefly the political and religious state of the country at the end of the sixteenth century. The Reformation in Ireland during the sixteenth century - i.e., under the Tudor dynasty from Henry VIII to Elizabeth - was primarily a political movement. Not until the advent of James I, was any real attempt made to establish a Protestant mission all over the country. Ireland had been saved from undue religious persecution because the English could not exert political control except in or about Dublin and in some of the other towns. But the results of the Nine Years' War changed the whole aspect of the situation. In 1603 Ireland lay at the feet of her conqueror. Never before was there such an opportunity for propagating the reformed doctrines. It was in these years, so crucial for the Catholic religion, that the Jesuits of the first permanent Mission in Ireland arrived. Among them few had wider influence than Father Henry Fitzsimon.

Although Fitzsimon was imprisoned after the first two years, the result of his work was lasting. During that short period he had visited most of the influential families of the Pale. He has been particularly active in the City of Dublin, where he knew the brunt of the battle was borne. Every Sunday and feast-day he said Mass in the city and preached at least one sermon. On week-days he travelled into the country and visited the houses or the gentlemen of the Pale. His exhortations to remain steadfast in the Faith were generally successful and he converted to a more fervent life several who had grown remiss in the practice of their religion.

One instance typical of his work will suffice to give some notion of the nature of his activities. Describing the actions of the Dublin Council prior to the death of Elizabeth, he says: “A sudden and violent persecution burst upon the Catholics. By order of my Superior (Fr Holywood), I confirmed the chief men of the city by letters of consolation, by messages and by many other ways. The other fathers also performed their duty with increasing care and with ardent zeal and devotion”. But unfortunately the Catholics had not been well instructed in the doctrines of Faith and therefore might easily be duped by the reformers. In several parishes in Dublin the people were ordered to attend the Protestant Services, but all refused. Finally, a number of the inhabitants were summoned to appear before the magistrates. Fr Fitzsimon visited them all personally and instructed them before the meeting. In his own words “all stood firm, rejoicing that they were deemed worthy to suffer reproach for the name of Jesus”. This victory strengthened the Catholics in the other cities of Ireland.

Of his work in Dublin we have an interesting account from the pen of Fr Hamill, a secular priest. Writing on the 25 December 1598 he says: “As the Catholics increased daily, Fr Fitzsimon thought it well to erect a chapel in the house of a nobleman, at which the faithful night assemble. He got the hall lined with tapestry and covered with carpets, and had an altar made, which was as handsome and as elegantly furnished and decorated as any altar in Ireland. In this chapel Fr Fitzsimon celebrated High Mass, an event which was phenomenal in the Dublin of the time”. Fr Hamill, referring to his apostolate, says: “He converts hundreds to the faith. Not to speak of others who have returned to the Catholic Church in Dublin, one hundred persons, who last communicated according to the Protestant fashion, this year received instruction, reconciliation, confession and communion for the good father”. For two years he worked incessantly and indeed most successfully to stem the tide of reform, but his good fortune did not last long. In November 1599, he was captured by the authorities and imprisoned in Dublin Castle.

Had Fitzsimon devoted himself solely to the active ministry of preaching and administering the sacraments, his main work would have ended here and his period of imprisonment would interest us both little. But his apostolate was more varied, and his most notable achievements lay in another field. As a controversialist he scarcely had an equal during his time in Ireland. On his arrival in 1597 We find him issuing challenges to all comers. Like St Paul, he excalimed that he himself had been defiled with almost the very same errors which he now sought out and refuted. “Why do I spend”, he says “so precious time and so much pains? Only to confound my errors and to do satisfaction to truth and religion which I impugnated. This also was the cause that, for two years after my return to Dublin, I was burning to dispute with the ring-leaders of the Reform - I wished it even, for this reason alone, that where my error had given disedification, my condemnation of error might wipe away the stain”.

His imprisonment did not put an end to his controversial activities. On the contrary it seems that it increased his opportunities for disputing with the reformed leaders. Prison life in Ireland at this time was not always a pleasant experience, as anyone will understand who peruses the accounts left of the suffering of Father David Wolfe or Archbishop Creagh. Fitzsimon himself gives us a description of his life during these days and of the hardships he had to endure. “From the time the Spaniards landed (September 1601) care was taken that I should be kept in the closest confinement, and be deprived of books and of every comfort that might alleviate the monotonous misery of prison life. By employing the most savage keepers he (the Governor of the prison) can find, by flogging some for being over-indulgent to me, by dismissing eight of them on that ground alone, and by suborning false witnesses against me, he shows the excess of his hatred against the name we bear (Jesuits) and the end we have in view”. It is a remarkable fact that, before he left the prison-cell, Fitzsimon had made a fast friend of the governor, Yet in spite of these hardships Fr Fitzsimon never ceased to carry on the work of the apostolate. The Protestant historian Wood, speaking of him at this time, says that he was the most able defender of the Catholic religion in Ireland. In prison he was always eager for the fray, and he compared himself to a bear tied to a stake waiting for someone to bait him.

It is interesting to note that Hugh O'Neill, on hearing of Fr Fitzsimon's imprisonment, demanded his instant release. He threatened even to renew hostilities with the government if his request was not granted, saying: “Wherefore as ever you think, that I shall enter to conclude tieher peace or cessation with the State, let him be presently enlarged”. But he added that he was “no more ‘beholden’ to him than to an Irish Catholic that is restrained in Turkey for his religion”. The precise reason for O'Neill's antagonism to him is not clear. Some authors infer that Pitzsimon had no sympathy for the Irish in their effort to withstand by force of arms the efforts of the English to conquer the country. But there is no evidence for these assertions, and all we can say is that Fitzsimon's primary interests lay not in matters of state or politics, but as far as possible in purely spiritual affairs, his love for Ireland rests not merely on such meagre proofs as his desire to write her history and, as an exile, to forward her religion, but above all, as we shall see later, it is shown by his longing to return to a country wherein he knew that death would surely be his destiny if only he were once more captured by the authorities.

During his imprisonment Fr Fitzsimon had controversies with many of the Protestant ministers, including the most outstanding men in the Dublin of the time. Among these were Dr Challenor, Dean Meredith Hanmer, James Ussher and Dean Rider. To assess the moral value of this work, we need only recall the great advantage secured by the reformers in Germany - and by Luther in particular - on account of the lack of outstanding supporters of the Catholic cause. The history of the Catholic Church in France in the eighteenth century evinces the same defect. And we need only glance back over the history of the sixteenth century in Ireland to understand the vital necessity to the Catholic Church of able defenders of the Faith. Fr Fitzsimon fully realised the inestimable advantage that would accrue to Catholics by the overthrow of the most prominent of their opponents. He saw that what the Catholics most needed was leadership. He would seek out their enemies, therefore, and refute their false doctrines, thus strengthening his own people in their Faith.

The language Fitzsimon used in the disputations might be considered unbecoming or even vulgar in our age, but such was the in language of controversy of the time. That he has no personal enmity for his opponents is shown by the extraordinary number of them whom he converted. Even the gaoler, who had been so antagonistic to him, became a Catholic before Fitzsimon was released. Hanmer too, as we shall see, became his friend and never molested him again. Fitzsimon was too good-humoured to be easily upset by criticism and too disinterested in his work to take personal offence at every slight indictment.

Of his encounter with Challenor, Fitzsimon gives us a short account. “As I knew the Protestants considered Challenor as one of their champions, I challenged him. He refused to have any dealings with the Jesuits, because they were disliked by his sovereign. This was an excuse created by his cowardice ...” When Challenor failed, Hanmer, nothing daunted, accepted the challenge. He had already written against Edmund Campion and was esteemed very highly by the reformers. Fitzsimon, with his usual candour, gives us an account of their meeting. “Dean Meredith Hanmer.... came with many high people to my prison. As he remained silent, I, trusting in the goodness of my cause undertook to defend what was weakest on our side and to attack what seemed strongest on theirs”. But Hanmer, unable to uphold his side, yielded and, from that time forward, refused to debate on controversial subjects with Fitzsimon. It is typical of the latter that after their dispute he should make friends with his discomfited rival. Hanmer, on his part, was not ungrateful, as we learn from Fitzsimon, who in a time or great need received from his former adversary a barrel of beer, a sack of flour, and the use of his library.

His next opponent was James Ussher, who was appointed Archbishop of Armagh later. Even at the age of fourteen Ussher had shown signs of genius. At that time he had already made a careful study of Ancient History, the Scriptures and the Meditations of St Augustine. Soon afterwards he made an extensive study of Latin and Greek authors, became interested in polemics, and was eager to read all the Fathers of the Church from the earliest tines up to the Council of Trent. Whether Ussher really understood what he had read is extremely doubtful. But at least the vast learning that he had attained - superficially or otherwise we cannot discuss here - incited him to undertake the defence of the reformed doctrines against anyone who would dispute with him. He visited Fitzsimon in prison and had several discussions with him. Finally Ussher sought a public disputation, which Fitzsimon refused. Many writers, following Elrington, hold that the Jesuit shirked a trial of strength with this brilliant young man of eighteen. But even the Protestant historical Wood is of opinion that Fitzsimon grew weary of disputing with Ussher, as he probably saw that further argument was futile. Even though we admit the talent of Ussher, yet when we compare the age, experience, and theological training of the two, we prefer to accept the statement of Wood, which in fact is corroborated by a letter or Fitzsimon himself. In it he says: “Once indeed a youth of eighteen came forward with the greatest trepidation of face and voice. He was a precocious boy, but not of a bad disposition and talent as it seemed. Perhaps he was greedy of applause, Anyhow he was desirous of disputing about most abstruse points of divinity, although he had not yet finished the study of philosophy. I bid the youth bring me some proof that he was considered a fit champion by the Protestants, and I said that I would then enter into a discussion with him. But as they did not think him a fit and proper person to defend them, he never again honoured me with his presence”. Even a cursory glance through Fitzsimon's writings is enough to convince one of his vast erudition, his prodigious knowledge of Scripture and the Classics, and his innate ability to turn an argument against an opponent.

Fitzsimon's final encounter was with Dean Rider, who later was appointed Bishop of Killaloe. Rider himself provoked the disputation but once Fitzsimon had accepted the challenge, he lost heart and kept postponing the ordeal. Finally Rider was forced to admit of his adversary “that in words he is too hard for a thousand”. Fitzsimon remained in prison for five years, but during that time he defended the Catholic cause with such success that, at the end of the period, he could sincerely declare that the reformers in Ireland were “clouds” without water, wafted by the winds: they are autumn trees, barren and doubly dead”. On the 5 April 1604, Fitzsimon gave an account of his five years' imprisonment. “I have been five years in prison, and I have been brought eight times before the Supreme Court... The Governor of the prison has been my deadly enemy.... At present they deliberate about driving me into exile... this is dearer to me than anything else in this world except death for the Faith”. Soon after this he was released and banished from the country.

For the next twenty-six years Fitzsimon worked on the Continent. Many of his written works belong to this period, and he attempted even a History of Ireland, which unfortunately is not extant. He was chaplain to the Emperor in the Bohemian Campaigns of 1620 and was an intimate friend of the greatest generals on the Austrian side. Little is known of his activities during these years, but in 1630 he was sent back to the Irish Mission. He was then about sixty-four years old. From casual references here and there we can gather that age had not damped his zeal or enthusiasm. In 1637 it was reported that he was in good health for his years (he was then seventy-one) and that he still preached and heard confessions. In 1660 his contemporary Fr Young wrote a sketch of his life where we find a description of his last years.

In the winter of 1641, Fitzsimon then about seventy-five years old was condemned to be hanged. In company with many other Catholics he fled to the Dublin mountains, where he sought shelter in a shepherd's hut, Even at this time he did not remain inactive, but went from house to house instructing the children of the poor and administering the sacraments. At last, worn out by fatigue, and hardship, he was taken to the quarters occupied by the Irish army - probably at Kilkenny. There he was entrusted to the care of his religious brethren, but in a few months he was dead. The date of his death is uncertain, but it was probably the 29 November 1643. Writing of Fr Fitzsimon, Fr Young says that heresy feared his pen, and that Ireland admired and loved him for his piety and for the great gifts of nature and grace with which God had endowed him.

Fr. Fitzsimon's end was marked with a note of tragedy and even of apparent failure. An outlaw on the hills, he died far from the scene of his constant toils. Probably no priest had done more for the Catholics in the Pale than he had. No opponent had ever encountered him and gone away victorious. Yet, despite all his controversies, he had very few personal enemies. “By his death” says Wood “the Catholics lost a pillar of the Church, being esteemed a great ornament among them, and the greatest defender of religion, and the most noted Jesuit of his time”. From these facts it is clear that Fitzsimon played a large part in the Catholic counter-reformation in Ireland.

Perhaps, before concluding this brief sketch of the life of Fr Fitzsimon, it might be well to refer to his literary activities. He was one of the most voluminous writers of the time. Two of his books were written in refutation of the theories put forward by Dean Rider, whom we have already mentioned. These are “A Catholic Confutation of it, M John Riders clayne of Antiquitie” and “A Reply to M Riders Postscript!” These and another book, “An Answer to certain complaintive letters of afflicted Catholics for Religion”, were printed at Rouen in 1608. The latter has been edited by Fr Edmund Hogan, SJ, under the title of “Words of Comfort to Persecuted Catholics”. It gives a description of the persecutions which Catholics had to endure at the beginning of the seventeenth century in Ireland.

His next book was a treatise on the Mass. Printed at Douay in the year 1611, it is entitled “The Justification and Exposition of the Divine Sacrifice of the Masse, and of al rites and Ceremonies thereto belonging divided into two bookes”. In the words of Fitzsimon, his first book treats of “controversies and difficulties, and devotion belonging to the Masse”, while in the second book “the first masso in the missal is justified, and expounded for all and everie parcel thereof”. This treatise, which contains almost 450 pages, displays remarkable intimacy with Sacred Scripture and with the writings of the Fathers of the Church.

The next work we know of is entitled “Britannomachia ministrorum in Plerisque et Fidei Fundamentis, et Fidei articulis Dissidentiunt”. Divided into three books it contains a defence of Catholic doctrines and a refutation of the theories propounded by the reformers. In 1619 Fitzsimon edited at Liège the “Catalogus Sanctorum Hiberniae”, which has been annotated by Fr Paul Grosjean, SJ, in "Feil Sgribhinn Eoin Mhic Neill”. The “Bohemian Campaign” he published in 1620 under the pseudonym of “Constantius Peregrinus”. This work is really a diary written during the wars in Bohemia. He also published another work, in connection with this campaign, under the title of “The Battle of Prague”. After his return to Ireland in 1630, Fitzsimon was so harassed by persecution that no opportunity was given him for further literary work.

James Corboy SJ

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Henry FitzSimon 1566-1643
Our ablest and unsurpassed controversialist was Fr Henry FitzSimon. He was born at Swords County Dublin on May 31st 1566 of wealthy and prominent parents. These latter, dying when Henry was young, he was brought up a Protestant.

He got his early education at Manchester, and studied later at Christ Church College, Oxford. He was converted to the Catholic faith in his infancy by Fr Thomas Derbyshire in Paris. He retained one relic of his Protestantism, an aversion to holy water. One morning however, on his way to Mass, having a violent pain in his thumb, he plunged it into the Holy Water font, and was instantly cured.

In 1592, at Tournai, he entered the Society, and he came to Ireland with Fr James Archer in 1597. Most of his work was carried on in the Pale. He displayed a fearlessness in the face of Protestants in Dublin, which in the opinion of his Superior, almost amounted to recklessness. For example, he set up a chapel in the house of a nobleman, and had High Mass celebrated with a full orchestra, composed of harps, lutes and all kinds of instruments, except the organ. The like had never been seen in Dublin for years, and hundreds flocked to the ceremony. Most important of all he founded the Sodality of Our Lady, the first in Ireland.

Arrest followed in 1599 and he was lodged in Dublin Castle. But “stone walls do not a prison make, nor iron bars a cage” was certainly true of him. He held conferences in prison with the leading Protestant divines, Challenor, Ussher and Dean Rider. On the naccession of James I, he was released and banished to Spain.

In Spain he did trojan work for the Irish Colleges from 1604-1630. In that year he returned to Ireland. In the Confederate War, he was forced to take to the Dublin hills, where he ministered to the people for a year. Finally, overcome by old age, exposure and hunger, he collapsed, and being conveyed to Kilkenny, in spite of tender care, he died on November 29th 1643.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
FITZSIMON, HENRY, was born in Dublin, in 1567,his Father was an eminent merchant. He was matriculated at Hart’s-hall, Oxford, 26th April, 1583. Nine years later, at the age of 25, he associated himself to the Society of Jesus at Douay. Under the instructions of the great Lessius, he soon was qualified for the chair of Philosophy, which he filled for several years. An ardent zeal for Religion urged him to solicit his return to his native Country; and I find that he reached Dublin late in the year 1597. Here he gave abundant evidence of commanding talents as a Preacher, of a fearless spirit and unbounded charity. Strange to say, he ventured to have a solemn High Mass, performed with great variety of musical instruments a sight that Dublin had not witnessed for Forty years before : and he also instituted a Sodality or Confraternity in honour of the B. Virgin Mary. But he was at length apprehended and detained in prison for five years, during which period, at eight different times, he was brought into Court; but was always remanded. Soon after the Accession of K. James, great interest was made for his discharge, and alter much negotiation, he was hurried as an exile on board a ship bound to Bilboa, without being allowed to take leave of his friends. Before he left the jail, he had reconciled many to the Catholic Church, and during the voyage his zeal produced the happiest effects among the crew and passengers. On the 14th of June, 1604, he landed at Bilboa. Rome, Liege, and the Low Countries admired his devotion to the labours of his Ministry : it was his pleasure and delight to visit the sick, to attend the infected, to assist prisoners and persons condemned to death; but his heart panted to re-enter the field of hardship and danger in his beloved and afflicted Country; and at last Superiors allowed him to follow his own inclinations. Like the giant he exulted to run his course : and the fruits of his industrious activity everywhere appeared in the numerous conversion of heretics, and in the strengthening of Catholics in practical religion. The Civil and Military Authorities marked him out for vengeance. In the winter of 1612, in the darkness of the night, he effected his escape from Dublin. Winding his way through sequestered woods and dells, he took up his quarters in a wretched cabin that he found in a Morass, where he was safe from those who hunted after his blood. Though exposed to the pitiless storm, and suffering every privation, this blessed Father never lost his serenity and elastic gaiety, and was always ready to administer consolation to others. But this Winter campaign broke down his constitution. Removed to a place of comparative comfort, he was treated by his brethren with the most affectionate care and charity; nature however was exhausted, and after a short illness, full of days and fuller of merits, he passed to never- ending rest, with the name of Jesus on his lips, on the 29th of November, 1643, or as another account has it, on the 1st of February, 1844. “By his death the Roman Catholics lost a pillar of their Church, being esteemed a great ornament among them, and the greatest Defender of their religion, in his time”. Wood’s Athenae. Oxon, vol. II. p. 46. This eminent writer left to posterity,
1 “A Calholic Refutation of Mr. John Rider’s claim of Antiquity”. N.B. This Rider was Dean of St. Patrick, and subsequently appointed to the See of Killala.

  1. “Reply to Mr. Rider s Postscript”.
  2. “An Answer to certain Complaintive Letters of afflicted Catholics for Religion”.
    All these were printed in a 4to. Vol. Rouen, 1608.
  3. “The Justification and Exposition of the Divine Sacrifice of the Masse, and of all Rites and Ceremonies thereto belonging”. 4to. 1611, pp. 356. I think printed at Douay.
  4. “Britannomachia Ministorum in plerisque et fidei fundamentu a Fidei Articulis dissidentium”. 4to. Douay, pp. 355.
  5. “Catalogus Sanctorum Hiberniae” Svo Liege, 1619, pp. 117.
    This was appended to the Hibernice sive Antiquioris Scotiae vindicia adversus Thomam Dempsterum, an 8vo. printed at Antwerp, 1621. Its author adopted the initials G. F.

Fleming, Richard, 1542-1590, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1314
  • Person
  • 1542-26 August 1590

Born: 1542, County Westmeath
Entered: 1561, Louvain, Belgium - Franciae Province (FRA)
First Vows: 24 June 1563, Louvain, Belgium
Ordained: 16 December 1569
Final Vows: 4 June 1576, received by Peter Canisius
Died: 26 August 1590, Pont-à-Mousson, France - Franciae Province (FRA)

1565-1566 Theology in Roman College and German College. Master of Arts
1567 CAT Teaching Logic at Dillingen - sent from Rome by Fr de Borgia. Peter Canisius at Dillingen then - Fleming brought a letter to him from Borgia in Rome
1570 Licenced, Teaching Theology at school. Confessor
1572 At Ingolstadt
1576 Was Professor in France (Vatical Arch Inghilterra). Rector of Bordeaux College
1577 Sought by Fr Genat from Fr General for Pont-à-Mousson
1583 In Pont-à-Mousson teaching Theology Doctor of Philosophy and Theology. Chancellor 1584-1585
Wrote first Catalogue of Irish Saints - published by Fitzsimon
Fr General wrote to him at Bordeaux referring to him as Socius to Maldonatus

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica”
He was a man of great virtue; A Writer; First Chancellor and Professor of Theology at Pont à Mousson, also Professor at Clermont and Paris (succeeding the celebrated Maldonatus)
The Blessed Virgin revealed to him in Paris that Fr Aquaviva would be elected General of the Society (cf Fr Hogan’s Irish list). Sacchini Part V Hist. Soc. mentions this prediction at Paris in 1581, of the election of Fr Claudius Aquaviva as general of the Society. He is mentioned in the “L’Université de Pont-à-Mousson” by Fr Nicolas Abram SJ (publised by Fr Carayon SJ, Paris 1870) - “He was of a noble Irish family and of noble and religious bearing”; Probably the “Richard” mentioned in Shirley’s letters; Stanihurst in “Description of Ireland” 1586 says “..of him I hear a great report, to be an absolute Divine and Professor thereof”. His name stands first in the list taken from the original in Vol II Anglia Hist. in ARSI. He appeared to Fr Derbyshire after his death.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Richard Fleming 1540-1592
Our most eminent and honoured Theologian of the early years of the Penal times was Fr Richard Fleming. Born in 1540, in what was afterwards known as Westmeath, he came from the family of the Lords of Slane, a family which later have an Archbishop to the See of Dublin. Richard entered the Society in 1561, the year the first Irish Jesuit, Fr David Wolfe, landed at Cork.

He became the first Chancellor of the University founded at Pont-à-Mousson by the Cardinal of Lorraine in 1573. Two years later he was called upon to fill the chair of Theology at the College of Clermont, Paris, vacated by the celebrated Maldonatus. This eminent post he held for nine or ten years, professing with ever increasing success amid the full blaze of Parisian party spirit.

He retired to Pont-à-Mousson where he died on August 25th 1590. Before his death he had a vision of Our Lady, in which he was left into the General Congregation then in session in Rome, and heard Our Lady say to the Electors “Choose Claudio Acquaviva as General”.

Fleming, Thomas, 1897-1988, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/498
  • Person
  • 29 March 1897-05 March 1988

Born: 29 March 1897, Sandymount, Dublin
Entered: 31 August 1914, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 22 December 1928, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1932, Holy Spirit Seminary, Aberdeen, Hong Kong
Died: 05 March 1988, Manresa, Hawthorn, Melbourne, Australia (McQuoin Park Wahroonga)

Part of the Manresa community, Hawthorn, Melbourne, Australia at the time of death, and died there on a visit whilst living at McQuoin).

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1921 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1924 in Australia - Regency
1930-1931 At St Beuno’s for Tertianship
by 1931 fifth wave Hong Kong Missioners
1937 Returned to Ireland to teach Philosophy at Tullabeg
by 1946 in Australia

◆ 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 Clongowes before he Entered at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg.

1916-1920 After First Vows he went to UCD and graduated BSc (Hons) in Mathematics and Physics
1920-1922 He was sent to Leuven Belgium for Philosophy
1922-1926 He was sent to Australia and first to Riverview and then Xavier College Kew for Regency, teaching Mathematics, Latin and Greek, and he was Second Division Prefect at Xavier.
1926-1929 He was back in Ireland and Milltown Park studying Theology and was Ordained in 1928.
1930-1931 He was sent to St Beuno’s Wales to make Tertianship
1931-1937 He volunteered for the Hong Kong Mission and first went to Shiuhing for language studies. After that he taught Mathematics at Wah Yan College Hong Kong, and Theology at the same time in the Holy Spirit Seminary, Aberdeen.
1937-1946 His health broke down and so he returned to Ireland and was teaching Ontology and Anthropology to the scholastics at Tullabeg
1946-1951 After the war he went back to Australia and to Riverview to teach Chemistry, Mathematics and Religion. While there he also wrote “Faith and Morals”.
1952-1967 He was sent to Canisius College Pymble to teach Theology
1969-1985 After a year back in Ireland he returned to Australia and this time to the Hawthorn Parish.

While he was teaching Theology he prepared meticulously for classes, lectures, sermons, retreats and normal sacramental work. He had a quick mind, but it was said that he was not particularly interested in exploring ideas too deeply. He was more interested in the dialogue for and against issues. He was very good at explaining what he taught - clear and logical. Once he took a position, little could move him. He had by this stage written a book on apologetics. He was awarded a PhD from the Gregorian in Rome for his studies and work.
He was known to argue with people at the Domain in Sydney from the platform of the Catholic Evidence Guild. For years he spent Sunday afternoons at the Domain, enjoying showing the truth of his faith to those who didn’t share it, and he loved the arguments, being quite a skilful and hard hitting debater.

At Hawthorn he took quite a different approach. he was known to be sympathetic, kind and shrewd. His somewhat sardonic sense of humour helped make him a popular retreat giver. Being quite set in his ways and thinking, he found the changes of Vatican II quite difficult to accept. He was more at ease with older people and enjoyed administering the sacraments to them and also doing visitations.

He was thought to have a somewhat idealised notion of what being Irish meant, and had a somewhat superior sense of the religious, moral and intellectual character of the Irishman - and this didn’t always square with his estimation of Irish people, lay and clergy, whom he met daily.
He was also a keen golfer - very good, but not patient enough to be excellent. He also found his love of football revived at Hawthorn, having loved it at Xavier when he was a scholastic there.
He gave of himself fully to his priestly ministry, understanding himself as commissioned to teach and defend the Faith, as well as bringing its comforts to those in need.
His last couple of years were spent at McQuoin Park in Hornsby, but he actually died at Hawthorn while on a visit.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 21st Year No 4 1946

Australia :
Frs. Fleming and Mansfield (who is a member of the Australian Vice-Province) were able to leave for Australia via America in July.
Frs. Lennon and Morrison are still awaiting travel facilities.
Fr. Fleming, on board S.S. Marine Falcon, between U.S.A. and Honolulu, 3-8-46 :
“We arrived in New York on July 20th. Fr. Provincial McQuade was extraordinarily friendly and provided me with even more dollars than I asked for. I had been informed that my boat would leave San Francisco on July 31st (with no other boat for a few months) so I spent only a day in New York. As I had been told that train and plane were about the same price, in order to gain time I sent my luggage ahead by rail and then flew from New York to San Francisco, breaking the journey for a week at Chicago to meet relatives who gave me a wonderful time. The speed at which people move here is almost incredible. The plane from New York to Chicago (44-seater) had an average speed of 222 miles per hour for the 800 miles. In a trip to Eau Claire the train did up to 124 miles per hour without any vibration or discomfort. Food is plentiful and good though very dear. A mere hair-cut costs 1.25 dollars (over 6s.). We are due in Sydney on August 20th, so that I shall have arrived before Fr. L. O'Neill. So far the journey has been very pleasant, though we have had to rough it on this boat which was a troop transport during the war. Food excellent and very plentiful. Seven other priests on board and three Mass kits”.

Gaffney, John, 1813-1898, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/171
  • Person
  • 14 October 1813-31 March 1898

Born: 14 October 1813, Dublin
Entered: 13 September 1843, Leuven, Belgium (BELG)
Ordained: - pre Entry
Final Vows: 02 February 1860
Died: 31 March 1898, Milltown Park, Dublin

Younger brother of Myles Gaffney - RIP 1861
Grand-nephew of John Austin - RIP 1784

by 1847 in St Paul’s Malta

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Younger brother of Myles Gaffney - RIP 1861. He had been Dean at Maynooth, and he resigned that position in order to spend the last years of his life in the Order his older brother had chosen long before him. Their Grand-uncle was the celebrated John Austin, a remarkable Jesuit in Dublin towards the middle of the eighteenth Century.

He did his first Ecclesiastical studies at the Little Seminary of Beauvais, France. From there he went to the Irish College in Rome, and was there in the days when Cardinal Cullen was President, and they had a good friendship. He gained three Doctorates at the Irish College, Philosophy, Laws and Divinity. After Ordination he returned to the Dublin Diocese and was appointed a Curate at Athy, and then Booterstown. And then just before his thirtieth birthday, he Entered the Society 13 September 1843.

By 1847 he had been sent to the Malta station, and he remained there for some time.
After that he was sent to Gardiner St, and spent close on forty years there, and was noted as one of the most active and zealous members of the Society in Ireland. He was mostly identified by Mission work, but he was also devoted to poor schools, particularly for the Catholic youth, who were under intense pressure of proselytism, He was seen as a man who brought salvation to these people. He established a ‘ragged’ school in Rutland St in close proximity to one of the proselytisers schools. He was so successful in attracting students that he had to seek larger premises, building a school on the site which became the St Francis Xavier School on Drumcondra Road. These schools were popularly known as “Father Gaffney’s Schools”.
1884 Failing health meant he had to abandon some of the active work and retire to Milltown. he remained there until his death 31 March 1898.
He was a man of marked ability. He was a profound Theologian and Philosopher, as well as an exceptional linguist, especially in Italian and French. During his years at Gardiner St, he was well known in Dublin, and admired and esteemed by all who knew him.
When he was moved to Milltown, there was a demonstration to keep him at Gardiner St. Later, the illness which caused his retirement became more severe, and his last days were ones of great suffering which he bore with resignation and fortitude. He died aged almost 85, and had spent fifty-five years in the Society. His funeral was held at Gardiner St and there was a large attendance of the clergy in the choir, and the laity filled the Church. Dr Leonard, Bishop of Cape Town presided.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John Gaffney 1813-1898
The name of Fr Gaffney was a familiar one in the mouths of Catholics in Dublin in the ‘80s, and his memory will linger long as that of one who “rose in dark and evil days” to fight the battle of the Christian faith against unscrupulous opponents.

Born in Dublin on October 14th 1813, he was educated for the Church in the Petit Seminaire of Beauvais, France. After seven or eight years, he entered the Irish College Rome, in the days of Cardinal Cullen. He got a Doctorate in Philosophy, Theology and Canon Law.

On his return to the Dublin diocese, he was a curate first at Athy and then at Booterstown, but before his 30th birthday in 1843, he entered the Society of Jesus.

He worked for a time in Malta, but the greatest part of his life – 40 years – was spent in Gardiner Street. His main work was to fight against the proselytisers. With this object in view, he opened a school for poor children in Rutland Street, near a centre for souperism. So well did he succeed in his venture that he had to transfer to more extensive premises in Dorset Street, the site of the present day St Francis Xavier’s School. His efforts for the education of Dublin’s poor will cause no surprise when we recall that he was a grand-nephew of Fr John Austin SJ, who had done so much himself in this same cause at the end of the previous century.

Fr Gaffney died at Milltown Park on March 31st 1896. His elder brother, Dr Miles Gaffney had been Senior Dean at Maynooth College and had become a Jesuit in his last years, and predeceased John in 1861.

Galwey, James, 1655-1732, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1347
  • Person
  • 07 March 1655-17 February 1732

Born: 07 March 1655, Co Cork
Entered: 18 February 1677, Naples, Italy - Neapolitanae Province (NAP)
Ordained: c 1688, Naples, Italy
Final Vows: 15 August 1695, Bavaria, Germany
Died: 17 February 1732, Amberg, Bavaria, Germany - Germaniae Superioris Province (GER SUP)

1683-1685 Theology at Naples
1685-1686 Not in Catalogue
1689-1691 Procurator at Irish College Poitiers
1695 At Louvain 16/08/1695 and then left that Province
1699-1700 In Poitiers

◆ Fr John MacErlean SJ :
1683-1688 Studies in Germany
1689 Intended for the Scottish Mission this was prevented by the Revolution and consequent persecution, so he spent the next 10 years at Colleges in Europe
1699-1702 Accompanied Fr John O’Daly to the West Indies and was stationed at St Kitts until English occupation in 1702
1702-1732 Returned to Europe

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
GALWEY, JAMES. I read in a letter of the Superior Anthony Knoles, dated Waterford, the 21st of November, 1695 “I have written to F. James Galwey to continue in Belgium until I can be a better judge of the state of the times, as to his disposal”. In consequence of the dangerous illness of his brother, a merchant of St. Sebastian, he was allowed to quit the College at Poitiers to visit him in the beginning of the year 1697. Two years later, Pere Garganel, Superior of the Mission at Martinique, made application for some Irish Father to assist in that Mission and the neighbouring islands : he represented that there was a great number of Irish in his district that an abundant harvest of souls was opened to the view, and that he and his brethren would cheerfully provide a maintenance for one or two Irish Jesuits, who would assist these souls, together with the French population. It is an historical fact, that with Cromwell’s usurpation began the system of transporting the Irish, as slaves, to the West Indies : for a long time, says the letter, dated the 16th of April, 1699, almost every year, and sometimes often in the year, the English convey from Ireland shiploads of men, boys, and girls, partly crimped, partly carried off by open force, for the purpose of their slave-trade, and thus in process of time, an immense multitude of Irish has been scattered in these islands, but destitute of spiritual succor. This Mission was proposed to F. Galwey, and how it was received the following letter of F. James Kelly, the Rector of the College of Poitiers, the 6th of August, 1699, will best demonstrate. “With the most intense delight F. James Galwey embraces the Mission of Martinique, offered by your Reverence, and he does so with the more confidence in God, as the lot has fallen upon him not in consequence of any expressed wish on his part (for though he wished it, he durst not apply for it); but now he is solely guided by the spirit of obedience. With alacrity he is getting ready for the voyage. F. Garganel, who from his arrival from Martinique, has been on intimate terms with him, is desirous of having him for his companion. In the meanwhile, we cannot but humbly request, that you will not give up, but merely lend F. Galwey to the Martinique Mission; for should our affairs lift up their head again in Ireland, he will be very necessary for us”. Whether F. Galwey ever returned, I have yet to learn.

Gartlan, Thomas, 1853-1942, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/163
  • Person
  • 29 April 1853-20 June 1942

Born: 29 April 1853, Newry, County Down
Entered: 11 January 1871, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1880
Final Vows: 02 February 1892, St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 20 June 1942, St Mary’s, Miller St, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05 April 1931
Cousin of Fr Ignatius Gartlan SJ

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1874 at Roehampton London (ANG) studying
by 1875 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1879 at Montauban France (TOLO) studying
by 1901 in Australia

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Note from Charles O’Connell Sr Entry
William E Kelly, Superior at Hawthorn, says in a letter 09 April 1912 to Thomas Wheeler “Poor Father Charlie was on his way from his room to say the 8 o’clock Mass, when a few yards from his room he felt faint and had a chair brought to him. Thomas Claffey, who had just returned from saying Mass at the Convent gave him Extreme Unction. Thomas Gartlan and I arrived, and within twenty minutes he had died without a struggle.

◆ 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 St Stanislaus College Tullabeg before he Entered the Society at Milltown Park.

1874-1876 He was sent to Leuven for Philosophy
1879-1880 He was sent for a year of Theology to Montalban, France
1880 Because of ill health he was sent to Australia and was ordained there early by Archbishop Vaughan of Sydney on 22 May 1880, partly because he was not expected to live long. He lived at St Ignatius College Riverview, and with it’s founder Joseph Dalton he helped implement the early spirit of the College. He responded well to the Australian climate and became particularly interested in the Riverview Cadet Corps and Rowing Club. In 1885 the first Riverview regatta was held. In later years he built the Dalton Memorial Chapel, and he strongly urged the continuation of the main school building. However, lack of finances prevent this progressing.

Although he was Irish he had a very strong affinity with the British Empire. Vice-royalty were frequent visitors to Riverview in his time as Rector. His own family were part of the establishment - Lord Russell of Killowen, his cousin, was Chief Justice of England (the first Catholic to serve in this role since the Reformation). He believed that good relations with the establishment were important for the growth and development of the College.

His impact on Riverview was considerable. He was not afraid to spend money, though the debt was considerable, and he continually urged Jesuit Superiors to improve living conditions. In 1908, the visiting Irish provincial said of Thomas that despite his fondness for athletics, he was a very suitable person as Rector. He enforced discipline and was very popular with the people of Sydney, and this left to the success of the College. This report was made by Father John Conmee, when no other College in Australia had escaped criticism.

He was very partial towards sport in the College, and fostered it even at the expense of academic progress. However, his great friendliness with the boys and parents, Great Public School Headmasters and the Sydney establishment made him well known in Sydney. He was most outspoken among Jesuits about Riverview, especially in requesting from Superiors some good teachers. He was also respected outside the College for his contribution to educational committees, but major educational comments came from his very capable Prefect of Studies - James Dwyer, Jeremiah Sullivan, Robert Little and Patrick McCurtin.

He achieved respect and popularity despite the fact that he was not an academic. He had not completed the traditional Jesuit training because of ill health, and he was not involved in much teaching during his time at the College. Prefects of Studies suggested that perhaps he did not always appreciate the importance of regular study periods for the boarders, and they complained about absenteeism among the students, especially the rowers, from classes and study. Dalton and Gartlan began an important tradition at the College of fostering friendly relations between masters and students - Thomas was considered one of the most popular schoolmen ever seen in Australia.

The St Ignatius College Old Boys Union was greatly encouraged by Thomas. At one gathering of these gentlemen, he told them that he believed that the wider community judged the College more by the quality of the Old Boys than by the present students. Furthermore, following Dalton, he believed that the College was so much bound up with the ex-students, that it should not be separated from them. It was his wish that ex-students should be true to the principles they imbibed at the College. In response te Old Boys expressed the idea that they were proud of their old masters that they believed were a factor in their success. They were proud to be taught to be liberal-minded towards one another and fellow citizens. Renewed association with Thomas and his fellow Jesuits helped renew the spirit they had received at school. At his death, the Old Boys remembered him for his cheerfulness and courage, his great kindness, his humour friendship and wise counsel.

At an Old Boys Dinner in 1916, lifelong friend William T Coyle, proclaimed Thomas as the greatest Headmaster New South Wales had ever seen, with only Weigall of Sydney Grammar School being considered his equal. Old Boys were generally effusive in acclaiming the greatness of Thomas, who spent 34 years at the College and sixteen as Rector, in two terms. It has been truthfully claimed, that after its founder (Dalton), the College owed more to Gartlan than any other single man. This claim could truly be made, not only because of the length of years he spent at Riverview, but mainly because of his great affability and talent for public relations.

His kindness and spontaneous charity emerged from his own inner happiness and goodness. His knowledge of and devotion to the students, his enthusiasm for every aspect of school life, his approachability and fatherliness won the hearts of those who knew him. He had a great capacity for remembering names, and was very proud of the success of any Old Ignatian. This was his great strength and major contribution to the development of hundreds of boys he helped educate at Riverview. Knowing he was popular with people probably strengthened him against the just criticisms of Jesuit colleagues. He counted all types of people as his friends.

After he left Riverview in 1919 he worked at St Mary’s, Miller Street until his death in 1942. I his latter years his sight was so bad that he had to say the Mass of Our Lady daily. He lived a long life of dedicated service, and he was loved by those he served.

Note from John Casey Entry
He planned the new entrance to the college past first field, and he supervised the building of the new boatsheds in honour of Father Thomas Gartlan, the first rowing master and former Rector

Note from James O’Dwyer Entry
O'Dwyer's first appointment in Australia was as prefect of studies at St Ignatius' College, Riverview, 1901-04, but it seems that, as he did not continue the policy of previous prefects
of studies, he did not win the approval of the rector, Thomas Gartlan.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 6th Year No 1 1931
From 23 to 27 August, Riverview celebrated the Golden Jubilee of its foundation... The College was founded in 1880 by Fr. Joseph Dalton, He was “wisely daring enough” to purchase a fine property on Lane Cove from Judge Josephson, The property consisted of a cottage containing eight or nine rooms with substantial out offices, and 44 acres of land, at a cost of £4 500. 54 acres were soon added for £1 ,080, and an additional 20 acres later on completed the transaction. This little cottage was the Riverview College of 1880. The modesty of the start may be measured by the facts, that the founder of Riverview, and its first Rector, shared his own bed-room with three of his little pupils , and when the College played its first cricket out match, it could muster only ten boys to meet the opposing team. By the end of the year the number had increased to 15.
In addition to Fr. Dalton's, two other names are inseparably connected with the foundation of Riverview. The first is that of His Grace, Archbishop Vaughan, who invited the Jesuits to Sydney, formally opened the College and gave the Fathers every encouragement.
The second is the name of the great Australian pioneer, the Archpriest Therry. “One hundred years ago”, says one account : “Fr Therry was dreaming of a Jesuit College in Sydney... and when he went to his reward in 1865 he gave it a special place in his final testament”. Fr Lockington called Frs. Dalton and Therry the “co-founders” of Riverview, and added
that it was the wish of the latter to see Irish Jesuits established at Sydney.
An extract from the Catalogue of 1881 will interest many. It is the first time that Riverview is mentioned as a College in the Catalogue :
Collegium et Convictus S. Ignatius
R. P, Josephus Dalton, Sup a die 1 Dec 1879, Proc_ Oper
P. Thomas Gartlan, Min, etc
P. Joannes Ryan, Doc. 2 class. etc
Henricus O'Neill Praef. mor. etc
Domini Auxiliairii duo
Fr. Tom Gartlan is still amongst us, and, thank God, going strong. Soon a brick building (comprising study hall, class rooms and dormitories) wooden chapel, a wooden refectory, were added to the cottage, and in three years the numbers had swelled to 100, most of them day-boys.
The first stage in the history of Riverview was reached in 1889, when the fine block, that up to a recent date served as the College, was opened and blessed by Cardinal Moran.
The second stage was closed last August, when, amidst the enthusiastic cheering of a great gathering of Old Boys, the splendid building put up by Fr. Lockington was officially declared ready to receive the ever increasing crowd of boys that are flocking into Riverview. The College can now accommodate three times as many students as did the old block finished in 1889. Not the least striking part of the new building is the Great Assembly Hall erected by the Old Boys as a memorial to their school-fellows who died during the Great War.

◆ Our Alma Mater, St Ignatius Riverview, Sydney, Australia, Golden Jubilee 1880-1930

Riverview in the ‘Eighties - A McDonnell (OR 1866-1888)

Father Gartlan ranks next to Father Dalton as the founder of Riverview. Throughout the whole existence of the College he has either been at the College or not far distant from it, and he was for many years Rector, A great friend of the boys, he could get the best results from apparently unpromising material, In my time, the office of chief of the punishing department fell upon Father Gartlan, and big and little secured the strap if they deserved it; but I never knew of an instance of a victim bearing any resentment. The instrument of torture used to consist of about two feet of buggy trace. Canes were not used. The strap was a better instrument in every way and it made a resounding smack, the moral effect was great, and widespread. Secular masters were not allowed to use corporal punishment. Receiving strokes on the palms of the hands was known as “taking socks”. Father Gartlan was Minister of the House during the greater part of the time I was at Riverview, and as such had the supervision of the boys in the Refectory, where he preserved the most perfect order and decorum, while at the same time doing everything in his power to interest and entertain the boys at mealtime. Interesting matter from the newspapers was read aloud, and Test Matches were played and discussed in those far off days like they are now. Another way in which he showed his interest in the boys and intention to give them as much entertainment as he could, were his “moonlight excursions”. In warm, fine weather when the moon was near the full, he would select a crew of half a dozen and, after the evening study, he would take these to the boatshed, and in the big College boat a trip would be taken down the harbour. When the flying foxes were numerous, I have known him to take a gun with him, but do not remember any casualty among the foxes, as a consequence. Sometimes we went as far east as Fort Denison, and one night an outward bound Newcastle boat nearly walked over us. On our return to the boatshed a hamper would be opened, and then we would quietly creep to our beds.

◆ The Clongownian, 1943

Obituary

Father Thomas Gartlan SJ

One of the oldest, if not the oldest, of Tullabeg men passed away, when on June 20th, 1942. Fr Thomas Gartlan went to his reward in Sydney, Australia. He had gone to Australia as a young Jesuit in 1880. sent there on the doctor's advice with the hope, but hardly with the expectation, that the climate of Australia would prolong his life. This it did, and for over sixty years Fr Gartlan did great work, chiefly in St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney. Our Alma Mater, the Riverview school magazine, says of him : “He is considered one of the founders of the College, as well as one who was largely responsible for shaping its early growth and its spirit”. He became Rector of Riverview, and with one short break of less than two years, he held the office for nineteen years. He built the central block of the main building, also the Dalton Memorial Chapel. He was especially interested in rowing, and the great success of the Riverview Regatta was mainly due to him. Our Alma Mater says of him “When he went to his reward he left us memories of a lifetime of happy companionship with one who had many of the elements of greatness”. And again : “A fellowman, a priest, and a Jesuit could have no better commendation than the effect he produced on those who knew him - admiration, tinged with affectionate reverence. God : rest his dear soul”.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father Thomas Gartlan (1853-1942)

Entered the Society in 1871 and was at the Crescent for one year of his regency, 1877-78. After his ordination, he went out on the Australian mission where he laboured with distinction for over fifty years. He was many years associated with Riverview College, Sydney.

Geraldine, Michael, 1588-1621, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1517
  • Person
  • 29 September 1588-30 August 1621

Born: 29 September 1588, Dublin
Entered: 20 September 1607, Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 15 March 1614, Brussels, Belgium
Died: 30 August 1621, Antwerp, Belgium - Flanders Province (FLAN)

Alias Fitzgerald

Son of Richard Geraldine and Margaret Cusack
Studied Humanities in Ireland and Antwerp before Ent
Educated at Irish College Douai
1611 Strong, clever, industrious, and a good classical scholar. Pleasing in conversation. Will possess some judgement when he develops, can show impatience.
1613 At Louvain studying Theology

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica”
Son of Richard Geraldine and Margaret née Cusack
Early education in Ireland, then three years Philosophy at Antwerp.
Admitted to the Society by the FLAN Provincial Father Florentine before Ent at Tournai.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ
Son of Richard and Margaret née Cusack
Had studied at Irish College Douai before Ent 20 September 1607 Tournai
After First Vows he completed his studies and Douai and Louvain and was Ordained at Brussels 15 March 1614
After Ordination he taught Philosophy and later Scripture at Antwerp until his death there 30 August 1621

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

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

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

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

Younger brother of Frederick Gill - LEFT 1928

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

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

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

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

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

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

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1946

Obituary

Father Henry Gill SJ

On Nov 27th, in St Vincent's Nursing Home, died very peacefully, Fr Henry Gill SJ. He was well known to many Belvederians and his passing means for them the loss of an esteemed friend.

From 1909-12 he was on the teaching staff here, and was also Director of the BVM Sodality. Then again from 1923-30 he was Minister, Director of the Sodality of the Holy Angels, and of the Conference of St Stanislaus. Those who were here during those years will well remember him for his kindly humour and deep spirituality.

A man of great gifts, and one who used them well and carefully, this quiet, unassuming man had a busy and an active life. After his earlier studies at Louvain, he studied at Cambridge from 1906-08, under Prof J J Thompson, at the Cavendish Laboratories.

Then came the Great War, and he was one of the first to volunteer as a chaplain. The war record of this quiet man will come as a revelation to many. He received, during these four years, the double award of DSO and MC, and his unfailing serise of humour and quiet gifts of companionship made him a special favourite with the men.

Still another side of his work was to be revealed in his later days - in his writings. He had been for many years quietly contributing to Studies, The Irish Monthly and The Irish Ecclesiastical Record. His contributions to the latter were published in book form in two small volumes entitled “Jesuit, Spirituality” (1935), and “Christianity in Daily Life” (1942), both of them full of his characteristic common sense. A selection of his many contributions on scientific subjects was issued in 1943 under the title, “Fact and Fiction in Modern Science”. Three days before his death, he corrected the final proofs of a small “Life of St. Joseph”. At the foot of the last page of these proofs he wrote in a hand that was shaky but still legible, - “St Joseph, patron of a Happy Death, pray for us”.

It was a fitting ending to a life which was to be crowned by a happy death. RIP

◆ The Clongownian, 1946

Obituary

Father Henry Gill SJ

Henry Gill was the second of the six sons of Mr H J Gill, JP, MA, head of the publishing firm of M H Gill & Son of Dublin. Katharine Tynan Hinkson wrote a delightful account of her friend Mrs Gill and of the family life at Roebuck House; it showed from what a good source was derived the charm which Fr Henry's many friends always found in him. All the boys went to Clongowes, and during the last two decades of the 19th century the name “Bottles” was in familiar and affectionate use; its origin, according to the legend, had something to do with the relation between a gill and a pottle, two antique measures of capacity which we were supposed to know something about.

Henry left Clongowes in 1889, and entered the novitiate at Tullabeg the following year, hating it but feeling he had to do it. Having to do it, he did it thoroughly, and after a very few years the stamp of the Society on him was unmistakeable. Fortunately, while it deepened the spiritual side of his character, it did not destroy or even diminish his exquisite sense of the comical, a source of continual surprise and delight to those he lived with.

After the usual round of studies and teaching, he was ordained at Milltown Park in 1906. During his studies he had shown particular aptitude for Physics, and as a Scholastic he read a paper (I think to the RDS), embodying the results of some ingenious research work. After his ordination he went to Cambridge, where he worked in the Cavendish Laboratory under J J Thomson and took his MA degree. It was the beginning of a new era in Physics, inaugurated chiefly by Thomson's theories and experiments. Fr Gill was profoundly interested, then and later, and his interest found expression in a number of articles in various journals. These articles formed the core of his book, “Fact and Fiction in Modern Science”, which appeared in 1943, and which was warmly received in England and America. An American edition was sponsored by Fordham University.

In 1913 he expounded to the British Association a new theory of the origin of earthquakes, which he supported by some very striking experiments. But in 1914, as soon as the war began, he offered his services as a chaplain, and served through the whole war. He was awarded the MC and the DSO, besides various foreign decorations; officers and men in the battalion to which he was attached testified to his heroic courage and devotion and his unfailing gaiety in the worst circumstances. I spoke to him once of this. He said: “Well, one made the offering of one's life at Mass in the morning, and then it didn't matter”. His deepest and most real interests were the eternal ones.

These interests found expression in his books, “Jesuit Spirituality”, “Christianity in Daily Life”, and “St Joseph”. This last was the theme of his meditation during the last two years of his life; indeed he finished it on his death-bed, and the invocation at the end, St Joseph, “patron. of a happy death, pray for us”,' was written by him just two days before he died, Death found him as cheerfully ready as life had always found him. May he rest in peace.

M F Egan SJ

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father Henry Gill (1872-1945)

A native of Dublin and a member of the well-known publishing family, was educated at Clongowes and entered the Society in 1890. He pursued his higher studies at University College, Dublin, Louvain, and Milltown Park, where he was ordained in 1906, and Cambridge University. He spent one year of his regency at the Crescent, 1898-1899. Father Gill showed little aptitude for teaching in spite of his splendid intellectual gifts. He volunteered for a chaplaincy in the first world war and was many times decorated and mentioned in despatches. He wrote much on scientific subjects for learned reviews and was the author of three widely read spiritual books: Jesuit Spirituality, Christianity in Daily Life, St. Joseph.

Golding, Richard, 1867-1923, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1371
  • Person
  • 13 May 1867-13 August 1923

Born: 13 May 1867, Shrule, County Galway
Entered: 07 December 1886, Dromore, County Down
Ordained: 1904
Final Vows: 15 August 1906, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 13 August 1923, Belvedere College SJ, Dublin

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1891 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1893
by 1900 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1905 at St David’s, Mold, Wales (FRA) making Tertianship

Editor of An Timire: 1919-1922.

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education was at Clongowes.

Obituary by Father James Rabbitte
“Richard Golding finished his Novitiate at Tullabeg - Father (John) Colgan being Mag Nov - and he remained there for some years of Rhetoric. In 1891 he was in Louvain doing Philosophy, and then 1892 returned for his second year to Milltown. On 20 October 1893 he arrived in Australia for Regency, and all of his time was spent there at Riverview as a Teacher and Prefect. (It would seem that he had previously contracted pulmonary consumption and was sent home for care by Dr Cruise, and this had produced a change for the better).
In July 1899 he returned to Europe and went to Jersey for Philosophy. Then in 1902 he was at Milltown again doing Theology. After Ordination he went to Mold, Wales for a FRA Tertianship. In 1906 he was sent teaching at Clongowes. In 1919 he was sent to Belvedere as Assistant Director of the Messenger.
He was at leas six feet tall, thin, well-proportioned, features regular and pleasing, placid in manner. His method of speaking was slow. He had a sense of humour. It was amusing to hear his quiet, slow relating of an anecdote and listen to his dry little chuckle of amusement. His family at Shrule were amongst the most respectable and religious. Father Richard was straightforward, inoffensive and holy.

John B Kelly “Reminiscences” 1926 Clongownian :
“Another Rhetorician in my year was Dick Golding. I remember him, even as a student, as a wonderful essay writer, with an almost uncanny perfection of style about everything he wrote.”

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Richard Golding entered the Society in December 1886, and undertook novitiate and juniorate studies at Tullabeg. Because of poor health he was sent to Riverview where he taught, 1894-99. He was third prefect in 1894 and 1897, and second prefect, 1895-96, worked with cadets and edited the “Alma Mater” in his final year.

◆ The Clongownian, 1924

Obituary

Father Richard Golding SJ

The whole outer world, and with it our own ways of thinking, have changed more in the last thirty years than it did in the preceding seventy years. In those older days, I think, we thought less of money and of publicity, of advertising ourselves and our work. There were still many who found their chief reward in consciousness of work unnoticed and unobtrusive but lovingly and lastingly wrought. Such a world produced a patient, quiet spirit, a mind tolerant and quiet, not easily ruffled by the ebb and flow of fortune which seems to it to concern itself, as indeed it does, so largely with trifles.

Such, in my memory, was the Dick Golding that came to Clongowes about Easter of 1879, and such he always remained during the many years we were boys together there, and I am sure that the boys of after years who were taught by him, and listened to his sermons, must have felt the gentleness and nobility of his character-for he was still unchanged when I met him again in very different surroundings. I saw him in the hospital during his last illness. Entering the room, I walked over to the bed. holding out my hand, and he looked up at me with the well-known bright, clear eyes and quiet smile, and said: “I don't shake hands with my friends now”. He was completely paralysed and could not lift his hands. That was all I ever heard from him of his illness. It was only from the nurse and the doctor I lerned “what he must be suffering”. I always thought - though I never discussed the subject with him - that he looked on at the changing of the times with a certain sadness, seeing the older and more cultured civilization retiring before the advance of vulgarity - but still without any irritation or vexation - regarding it as part of the inscrutable ways of the Providence of God, who out of evil can always make good come. Sometimes he used to go to Galway for a week or a fortnight's vacation in the summer, and while there he was a frequent visitor at the workhouse, where he would spend a long time chatting with old men who, though not learned in books, were of the older order, pure and untainted in mind, faithful and true to all that is noblest and best. And it seemed to me that whatever the Galway fresh air and sea breezes might do for the healthful refreshment of one coming from the close atmosphere of the Messenger Office, Dublin, the hours he spent in that strange, old-fashioned world did far more to refresh his spirit. I sincerely believe that in all his life he never had an enemy - left none to speak evil of him after death. The danger is that his friends do not pray for him, saying: “Why should we pray for him; he surely does not need it!”.

Cara da Chairdibh

Good, William E, 1527-1586, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1372
  • Person
  • 1527-05 August 1586

Born: 1527, Glastonbury, Somerset, England
Entered: 03 June 1562, Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained by 1562
Final Vows: 08 September 1577, Rome
Died: 05 July 1586, Naples, Italy - Angliae Province (ANG)
1570 Returned from Ireland to Louvain

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Came to Ireland with Dr Creagh 1564-1569

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father William Good 1527-1586
William Good, scholar and fellow of Corpus Christi Oxford in 1552, received great preferment in the Church under Mary of England. On Elizabeth’s accession, he resigned all for conscience and betook himself to Tournai, where he was one of the first Englishmen to offer himself for the Society. This was in 1562.

His noviceship over, he was appointed chaplain to Archbishop Creagh to accompany him to his new Diocese of Armagh. The Archbishop however was captured in London, but Fr Good proceeded to Armagh. Here he met with a chilly reception from the Irish Chiefs, being an Englishman and knowing no Irish. So, he betook himself to Limerick where he put himself under the obedience of Fr David Wolfe.

Fr Wolfe put him teaching in the newly opened classical school at Limerick. It is related of Fr Good, that once, returning from a missionary journey he was waylaid and stripped of all his belongings. The robbers however, discovered from the Mass kit that their victim was a priest, pursued him and threw themselves on their knees before him. Fr Good did not understand what they said, but one of them took his hand and moved it in sign of absolution over himself. They wanted to be absolved from their sin of robbery.

Fr William was driven from Ireland by persecution, the same persecution which broke up the school in Limerick and sent Edmund O’Donnell to the continent. He laboured in Flanders and Rome, dying finally in Naples in 1585, aged 56, having been born at Glastonbury in 1527.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
GOOD, WILLIAM, of Glastonbury. Soon after the accession of Queen Elizabeth, he resigned all his ecclesiastical preferments, and united himself to the Society at Tournay, in 1562. When he had completed his Noviceship, he was ordered by Superiors to accompany Dr. Richard Creagh, Abp. Armagh,into Ireland a Prelate most cordially attached to the Society, and for about four years the good Father laboured with the zeal of an apostle, to confirm the faithful in the ancient Faith. On quitting Ireland he proceeded to Belgium, and was stationed at Louvain for some time. In 1577 he was enrolled amongst the Professed Fathers at Rome, and received instructions to attend F. Possevinus to Sweden and Poland. On his return to Rome, in December, 1580, he was appointed Confessarius to the English College in that city. This appointment gave special satisfaction and delight to Dr. Allen, as I find in his letter to F. Agazzari, dated 1st of June, 1581. “Quod R. P. Gul. Good, vere vir bonus, sit Collegii Confessarius, lector non mediocriter : est enim imprimis nostrorum moribus formandis, ac in omnem partem moderandia, idoneus”. A pithy elogium this! He was truly a saintly and prudent man, and ready to give his life for the name of Christ. Retiring to Naples, he closed a life of pious labour, on the 5th of July, 1586, and was buried in the Jesuit s College there. Two years before his death he published at Rome a Folio with engravings, entitled “Ecclesiae Anglicanae Trophaea”. F. More adds, p.14, that he left in MS. “An Abstract of the Lives of the British Saints”. See also his life in Tanner.

Gough, Ignatius, 1624-1693, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1378
  • Person
  • 1624-18 February 1693

Born: 1624, Sutton, Dublin
Entered: 05 October 1643, Mechelen, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 25 March 1651, Louvain, Belgium
Final vows: 04 October 1654
Died: 18 February 1693, Dublin Residence

Alias Goagh

His father Patrick was Mayor of Dublin and his mother was Anne Piers. Father was landowner at Sutton, mother was from Iristernagh. His brother forfeited the estate. A stone at Sutton has family arms of Gough with inscription G & P. Anne Piers’ brother was a priest and uncle Thomas a Franciscan. William Piers - great grandfather of Fr Gough - sent Shane O’Neill’s head to Dublin!
Studied Humanities in Ireland and then 4 years at Antwerp under Jesuits
1646 At Mechelen College
1649 Not in Catalogue
1666 Catalogue On the Mission in Dublin having returned from Holland where he was a missioner for 9 years

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Son of Patrick (Mayor of Dublin) and Anna née Piere or Piece. A Cousin of John Ussher, whose brother tried to deny Ignatius of his inheritance (cf Foley’s Collectanea)
Early education in Humanities was in Ireland, and then at Antwerp under the Jesuits. He was admitted to the Society by FLA Provincial Andrew Judocus and sent to Mechelen for his Noviceship. (Mechelen Album)
1666 He had recently arrived in Ireland from Holland, and he lived in Dublin engaged in many of the Mission’s affairs.
He spent fifteen years in Holland and twenty years in Ireland (Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Secomd son of Patrick (Mayor of Dublin) and Anne née Piers
Educated at Antwerp before Ent 05 October 1643 Mechelen
After First Vows, studied at Louvain where he was Ordained 25 March 1651
1654 He was a Military Chaplain at Brussels, then he taught Humanities for a year at Oudenaarde, Belgium, and then made his Tertianship
1657-1665 Missionary work in Holland
1665 Sent to Ireland and to the Dublin Residence, where he spent the rest of his life as a Catechist, Teacher and Operarius until his death there 18 February 1693
He was heir to a considerable inheritance which provided a foundation for the Dublin Residence and enabled the Fathers of the Mission in Ireland to support themselves. But the Gough estate was confiscated on the fall of Dublin to the Williamites

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
GOAGH, IGNATIUS. This Father, as I find by the letter of his Superior, F. Patrick Lynch, dated Dublin, the 19th of March, 1693, had died on the 18th of February, aet. 68, Soc. 48. He had spent about 15 years in the Mission of Holland, and 25 years in the same capacity in his native country.

Gould, Anthony, 1685-1730, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2327
  • Person
  • 16 October 1685-16 August 1730

Born: 16 October 1685, Ostend, Belgium
Entered: 08 September 1704, Mechelen, Belgium - Flanders Province (FLAN)
Died: 16 August 1730, Halle, Belgium - Flanders Province (FLAN)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Two Entries Goold

Son of William and Agnes née Bauwen. William was of an ancient Cork lineage, and possibly was the William Goold named in the inscription upon a white marble slab in the Virgin Chapel of St Giles’ Church, Bruges). William Goold, Mayor of Cork, died in 1634; Ignatius Goold of Cork, was attainted in 1691.

Studied in various places for seven years ending with a year under the Jesuits at Douai before Ent
Made First Vows at Antwerp.
Defended his Theological Theses on the Incarnation at Louvain, which were printed at Louvain (de Backer “Biblioth. des Écrivains SJ” art Feytens)

Probably Ent FLAN, as no record in ANG CAT

◆ In Old/15 (1) and Old/16

Greene, Liam F, 1942-2008, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/777
  • Person
  • 24 September 1942-15 February 2008

Born: 24 September 1942, Dublin
Entered: 04 October 1964, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 21 June 1974, Gonzaga College SJ, Dublin
Final Vows: 17 January 1984, Coláiste Iognáid, Galway
Died: 15 February 2008, St James's Hospital, James Street, Dublin

Part of the Campion, Hatch Street, Dublin Community at the time of death

by 1973 at Brussels Belgium (BEL M) studying
by 1974 at Cambridge MA, USA (NEB) studying - Harvard
by 1991 at Oakland CA, USA (CAL) Sabbatical

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/liam-greene-rip/

Liam Greene RIP

Please pray for the soul of Fr Liam Greene SJ, who died unexpectedly Friday morning, 15 February 2008 after taking ill suddenly. He was 65 years old and was working with the
JUST programme in Ballymun. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

Rev. Liam Greene, S.J.
who died at St. James Hospital, Dublin on 15 February 2008, aged 65 years.
24 September 1942 Born in Dublin
Early education at CBS, James’ Street. Studied English in UCD.
4 October 1964 Entered the Society at Emo
5 October 1966 First Vows at Emo
1966-1968 Milltown Park – Studied Philosophy
1968-1970 St. Ignatius, Galway – Teacher 1970-1973 Milltown Park – Studied Theology
1973-1974 Harvard (USA) – Studied Philosophy and Theology
21 June 1974 Ordained at Milltown Park, Dublin
1974-1984 St. Ignatius, Galway – Teacher; Director of “Irish Studies”; Retreats; Regency 1978-1979 Tertianship at Tullabeg
17 January 1984 Final Vows
1984-1987 Tabor House – Retreats to young people; Chaplain to DIT, Rathmines; part-time lecturer in Communications
1987-1989 Attached to Tabor but resident at 73 Croftwood Park, Ballyfermot 1987-1990 Chaplain and part-time teaching at DIT, Rathmines
1990-1991 Oakland, California – Sabbatical; MA in Spirituality
1991-2008 Campion House –
1991-1993 Development Creation Spirituality Project; Assistant in Tabor; retreats for young people
1993-1996 Communications Centre; Librarian
1996-2000 Also Lecturer in Communications, Ethics and Psychology at DIT
2000-2001 Lecturer at DIT / RTE
2001-2004 Writer; Media analysis (RTE / DIT); Spiritual Director (SJ)
2004-2006 Writer; Media analysis (RTE / DIT); Chaplain: Royal Victoria Eye and Ear Hospital; Spiritual Director (SJ)
2006-2008 JUST Project, Ballymun.
15 February 2008 Died in St. James’ Hospital, Dublin.
Liam collapsed at home in Campion House and efforts to revive him failed. Further attempt to revive him at St. James’ also failed and he was pronounced dead at around noon on Friday 15 2008.
May he rest in the Peace of Christ
Liam was a graduate of UCD, where he majored in English, before he joining the Jesuits. In addition to the above, he also graduated from Louvain University. Harvard University accepted Liam as its only European student the year that he went there. From then, and from his time in Berkeley in 1990, he had many American Jesuit friends.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 136 : Summer 2008

Obituary

Fr Liam Greene (1942-2008)

Paddy Greene writes:
Liam Greene died unexpectedly on 15 February, 2008, in his community home, Campion House, Hatch St. He had not shown any signs of being unwell in the previous days, and, in fact, had worked with his students in the JUST Project in Ballymun earlier that week. His favourite text was: "I have come that they may have life, life to the full"(In.1 0, 10), and it can be said that his life here ended with him living it to the full.

Liam was born in Dublin on 24 September, 1942. His mother, Jane Landers, was a nurse from Cork, and his father, Michael Greene, from Tullow in Co. Carlow, worked in the administrative staff in UCD. Three significant events happened during Liam's teenage years that had a profound bearing on the rest of his life.

First, it was identified that Liam had epilepsy. Learning to live with an unpredictable illness which necessitated a variable dosage of tablets introduced a degree of uncertainty to his moods and energy. Indeed, the many attacks of a greater or lesser extent that he endured throughout his life made him all too aware how consciousness can be snuffed out so quickly. On the positive side, he became passionate in his determination to make as much use of the present moment as possible, in fact, to live life to the full. Situations, therefore, that stopped him doing so provoked in him a harsh response, something that was not always understood by others.

Secondly, his mother, in an attempt to offset the setback of the epilepsy, sent him to evening classes in the National College of Art. So, for five years, as the youngest student there during all his time, he studied all aspects of art from life drawing to painting to art history. From it he got a lifelong fascination with creatitivity, particularly how it manifested itself throughout the centuries in the fine arts, but also in outstanding individuals. Napoleon was his teenage hero.

Thirdly, the death of his brother, Gerard, in an accident left him numbed for a long time - why had he been left and not his brother? It also raised for him questions of meaning, ultimate meaning. It led him to seek to enter the Jesuits after his Leaving Certificate, but the Provincial, Fr. Tommy Byrne, felt it would be too hard on his mother to lose another son so quickly, and so he persuaded him to go to University and consider his vocation after his degree. This he agreed to do.

Liam studied Pure English in UCD with Old Irish as a minor subject. There in 1961, 1 had the good fortune to meet Liam - I had just come from Emo after Vows - and we remained friends ever since. Dermot O'Connor was with Liam in Pure English, and perhaps it was through our friendship with Liam a path to the Society was more fully opened. Anyway, at the end of his degree, in 1964, he joined the Society.

After Vows, Liam went to Milltown Park for Philosophy. They were the heydays of Phil McShane, Conn O'Donovan and Eamon Egan. Liam revelled in all the intense work on Lonergan from McShane and O'Donovan while he also loved the gentle, yet precise, probing and alternatives offered by Egan.

Full of energy and enthusiasm, Liam joined me in Galway for Colleges. First, he had a month's immersion in Connemara to brush up on his Irish. The family he stayed with - Peig, Colie and Bairbre - took him to their hearts and they remained his Connemara family from then on. In the school Liam revelled in teaching, where his expansive style and flair got a great reception from the boys. In the community, Sean Mallin, in his late incarnation as a radical theologian, became great friends with Liam. In 1970, Seán O'Connor, as Headmaster, began his innovative approach to education and Liam became a staunch supporter. Although he was in theology when the experiment ended in grief, Liam always believed that Seán had been on the right track.

Back in Milltown for Theology, Liam was part of the BRA (Basement Residents Association), one of the small communities into which the scholastics were divided as an experiment in more personal living. Situated in the basement of the Retreat House, it included among others Michael Hurley and Brian Lennon, and the rumbustious debates among them all were legendary. Liam spent a semester in Brussels; it was dark and wet and dreary, but it was enlivened by the presence of an Irish-American Jesuit from Newry.

The issue of Liam's epilepsy became a problem with Rome in his third year. Cecil McGarry, as Provincial, took his part, but the negotiation with Rome took time so Liam in his fourth year went to Harvard University in Boston. There he did an MA in Religion and Culture. He was in his element again with the ferment of ideas and people making a heady cocktail. It was there that the story goes that Liam being asked to do a module on statistics (he hated maths) declined, offering the excuse that Ireland was so small that it did not need statistics, as everyone knew everyone else. He got away with it!

His diaconate took place in Boston, where he was supported by Jack and Mary Ryan, parents of Jack Ryan of the New York Province whom Liam and I met on our first visit to the US in 1971. Then home for ordination - a time of sublime celebration for Liam, his parents and family.

After being appointed to the College in Galway, Liam became a teacher of Religion, English, Art and History. These subjects gave him ample scope to express his gifts and training in these areas. He was an inspirational teacher who could convey a love and passion for his subject in a way that has stayed with many of his students to the present day. Like many an artist, he was not the most organized of people in starting out, but, once launched, there was a sureness and flow to his discourse that was compelling. His love of learning is best exemplified in History, which he began to teach with the encouragement of Pádraig O Cúaláin, the senior history teacher. His early enthusiasm for Napoleon was now broadened to encompass the colours and shades of the European canvas and he delighted in telling the stories of the individuals, great and small, that peopled that crowded space.

Special Sunday night Masses for sixth years and their female friends became a feature of the religion programme. Liam, with his powerful homilies and the time and interest he gave to individuals, was a major contributor at that time. Also, he was an essential part of the team that organized and ran the Roundstone retreats where 6th years and a group of teachers spent an intensive few days in an encounter-group retreat. These had a profound effect on the 6th years, and, consequently, the atmosphere in the whole school benefited from them. Liam's love of conversations was an essential part of his ministry and enabled him reach a range of personalities often missed by the rest of us.

Learning through experience was central to Liam's approach to education, and so, school tours to the Continent where religious, artistic, literary and historical events had occurred were undertaken by him. Memorable trips to Spain and Italy, where John Humphreys and myself were the bus drivers, were followed by an annual journey to Paris starting on St. Stephen's Day. This week was filled with the Louvre, the Jeu de Paume, the Tuileries, Versailles and Chartres. To listen to Liam speak of the great works of art, or the wars of history, was to be taken into areas of life that were before only glimpsed from a distance. It was education at its best.

Musicals had been a tradition in Galway under Eamon Andrews and Kieran Ward. During the early 70's Bob McGoran and Murt Curry revived the tradition and Liam joined in with great gusto. He helped with the production, the lighting, the painting and stage design, the costumes. It was a great experience of what makes a Jesuit school such a demanding and rewarding place, and where a lasting influence is had on the students.

After ten hectic years in Galway, Liam was moved to Chaplaincy in the DIT in Rathmines in 1984. The change came as a shock to him and it took him a good while to get used to it. Living in Tabor House was a help to him as it brought him in contact with young adults. The work of a chaplain is so less organized than a teacher, and meeting students is very much a hit and miss business. Liam's ability to drink endless cups of coffee and hold long chats stood him in good stead. However, he was primarily a teacher, and when openings occurred in the school of Film and TV, he took them, as it gave him a chance to lecture, debate and then move into the direction of students in making films. Because of the long and broken schedule of third level, Liam's health during these years was uneven. The correct prescription of medicines for epilepsy is an art not a science, and Liam suffered as a result. Over-prescribing left him depressed and heavy, while the opposite risked the onset of an attack. But despite the setbacks, Liam always bounced back. It gave him the impetus towards what had not yet happened and an impatience with any structure that stood still. And yet, the number of close friendships among lecturers and students he made in those years tells of his real commitment at all times to the individual.

After Tabor House closed, Liam went to live in Cherry Orchard with Gerry O'Hanlon and Bill McGoldrick. Liam in his own way got to know the local people and befriended them. His sense of humour helped to lighten even the most difficult situations, and there were some tricky ones in Cherry Orchard! So the move later to Campion House, Hatch Street, was to a quieter place, although Liam missed the involvement with the local people. As a part-time chaplain in the Eye and Ear Hospital he was able to show his care for those in need. His interest in the students in University Hall led to friendships that lasted many years, and led to links with families in Florence, Rome, France and Lithuania. He even gave a retreat to Jesuits in Lithuania using an interpreter! At this time as well Liam took a renewed interest in his mother's relations in the Galtee Mountains in Co. Cork. He became a source of the family lore of the older generations that stretched back to Famine times, but especially the burning of the local “great house” during the Troubles. Being with them and the very personal way he had of saying Mass became a great consolation to them in times of pain and loss.

When Kevin O'Higgins started the JUST Project in Ballymun in 2006, Liam became a member of the team. He spent a few days a week there and once more his teaching abilities came to the fore. He was greatly involved with helping the students master the skills of writing and presentation in the programmes geared to help them gain entry to third level education. He was also in charge of the cultural dimension to the programme, introducing students to the galleries, museums and theatres of the city. His work with the post-graduate group led to wide-ranging debates on art, history and matters of faith. Liam was in his element again. And that is how death found him: in good health, in good form, in full flight, in work he loved. He went at the height of his powers to a place of greater and deeper connections and explorations. Among his papers was found the following piece:

The Green Wood and the Dry
I'm not saying the journey is over
I'm not saying the end is in sight.
I cannot even call up those metaphors for the end:
The chapter closing;
The folding away of the blanket;
The putting of affairs in order.

My affairs are not in order and they never will be.
I am always beginning to spring-clean
And it never comes to an end.

I'm just saying that I am beginning to forget.
Whether this is age, weariness
Or just simply the overloading of the system,
I don't know.

But this has been a week where the refrain
“Lest we forget” has been repeated over and over again,
(By some - only by some.)
And while it would suit me to forget
To get lost in the whole business of trying to keep up with now,
I would not like to be forgotten,
Especially by those who have heard very little from me
And for whom my whole life must have been a mystery,
As much a mystery to them as to me.

I see this piece as an introduction Liam intended for some reflections and recollections on his life that he never got to write. Perhaps more enduring will be the sculptures he carved in France in the last few years. Although an artist, Liam had never tried sculpture until he got the opportunity to participate in a class while on holiday in France. The teacher, Christine, was gifted and she prodded and poked Liam into committing himself to the work. In the first year came what I call the Pretty Face - an initial study in the craft. The next year came The Hand, tentative, reaching out, just failing to grasp, or something else. It is striking in the complexity of its symbolism of the human condition. Then followed the Job-like head filled with pain and anguish and a scream for help that he said was what he often felt in his life. But he also felt a lot more than that, because his final sculpture is that of a serene, wise, peace-filled face gazing from a place of immense peace and certainty. That was his last statement that stays with us.

I finish by remembering Liam's love of meals, of the gathering of family, of friends, like Joan and Cathal in Barna, with Connla Ó Dúlaine in Aran, of the community with Charlie O' Connor in Hatch St., of the gatherings for the sacred meal of the Eucharist that he put his heart and soul into. Now he is, I am sure, taking part in the Eternal Banquet and awaiting our arrival.

Gubbins, James, 1889-1946, Jesuit priest

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

Born: 11 February 1889, Cush, 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!

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1947

Obituary

Father James Gubbins SJ

In 1942 when Fr. Gubbins came to Belvedere as Our Rector, everybody considered him to have many years of fruitful activity before him. But serious heart-trouble - perhaps the effect of an earlier illness which had nearly proved fatal during his early studies at Louvain - 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.

During that short time at Belvedere he had won the confidence 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 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.

He was an energetic, practical man, and in ordinary intercourse or in busiriess; friendly, obliging, interested in people and their concerns. He made acquaintances quickly and many of these became friends. As rector he showed remarkable gifts of administration, with his gifts and experience he could have given valuable service to Belvedere. But God judged otherwise, and found him ready for Himself and called hiin to eternal rest. He died peacefully in St. Vincent's Hospital at 9.15 pm, Sunday, September 28th. He had been in hospital since July 5th.

Not least of the tributes paid to him came from the newsboys, who asked that, during the Solemn Requiemn Mass at Gardiner Street, on October 1st, some benches be reserved for them in the Church

May he rest in peace.

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1947

Obituary

Father James Gubblins SJ

On September 28th, 1946, Father James Gubbins died after a prolonged illness. He was fifty-seven years of age, and had spent forty years in the Society. He entered the Society from Mungret in 1906. Later he studied philosophy at Louvain and Stonyhurst, He then taught for five years, spending from 1916-18 in Mungret. During his theological studies at Milltown Park he was ordained in 1921. In 1922 he went to Crescent College where he was to spend the next twenty years of his life. At the Crescent he was teacher, games master, and later Rector from 1934-42. He was appointed Rector of Belvedere College in 1942. Through ill-health he had to relinquish this office. Later he was appointed Procurator of St Francis Xaviers', Gardiner St, Dublin,

Father Gubbins was an able adıninistrator yet this did not hide his warm understanding of the troubles of others, and thus gave him a large circle of devoted friends. During his period of Rectorship in the Crescent he was responsible for the re-decoration of the church. His death was mourned not only by merrbers of his own family and the Society, but also by a large number of friends. His Lordship, Most Rev Dr O'Neill, presided at the Solemn Requiem Mass at the Sacred Heart Church, Crescent. To his two brothers and his sister, Sister Mary de Pazzi, we offer our condolence.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father James Gubbins (1889-1946)

Born at Cush, Kilfinane and educated at Mungret College, entered the Society in 1906. He pursued his higher studies at Louvain, Stonyhurst and Milltown Park where he was ordained in 1921. Most of his priestly life was passed at Sacred Heart College where he arrived as master in 1923. The Crescent of today owes much to this great man. The prestige of the school in studies and sport increased during his long association with the Crescent (1923-42) and when he retired from the rectorship in 1942 to take up the rectorship of Belvedere College, Sacred Heart College, Limerick, was once again securely in the forefront of Irish Catholic schools. During the rectorship of Father Gubbins, the ambitious scheme of marbling the entire walls of the church sanctuary was brought to realisation. In his youth, Father Gubbins fell a victim to rheumatic fever which had its fatal after effects when he had just attained the prime of life.

Guinee, Timothy, 1851-1919, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/170
  • Person
  • 03 August 1851-05 November 1919

Born: 03 August 1851, Banteer, County Cork
Entered: 12 November 1874, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1889, Leuven, Belgium
Final Vows: 15 August 1893, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 05 November 1919, Sydney, Australia

Part of St Aloysius community, Sevenhill, Adelaide, Australia at time of his death.

by 1877 at Roehampton London (ANG) studying
by 1879 at Laval France (FRA) studying
by 1886 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) Studying
by 1891 at Drongen (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1892 returned to Australia

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He made his Noviceship at Milltown under Charles McKenna.
After his Novitiate he was sent to Roehampton for Rhetoric, and after some months was recalled with some other Juniors and sent to Tullabeg where he studied for the London University.
He was then sent to Laval for Philosophy, but due to the expulsion of the French Jesuits he returned to Ireland during his second year, and he was sent teaching to Crescent for Regency. He then did more Philosophy at Milltown and further Regency at Tullabeg.
He was then sent to Leuven for Theology and was Ordained there.
After Ordination he went back to teaching at the Colleges, and then back to Leuven to complete his Theology. On return he went to Mungret teaching for a number of years,
1902 He was sent as Prefect of Studies to Galway.
1903 He was sent to Australia where he worked in various houses until his death. A painful throat cancer brought about his death 05 November 1919

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Timothy Guinee entered the Society at Milltown Park, 12 November 1874, studied philosophy at Laval, France, and Milltown Park. He taught French, mathematics and physics at the Crescent Limerick, 1880-81, and also at St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg 1882-85 . The long course in theology followed at Louvain, 1885-89, then he taught for the university examination at Clongowes for a year before tertianship at Tronchiennes, 1890-91. He taught at Mungret, 1891-1901, being prefect of studies, 1895-1901, and also at Galway, 1901-02, where he was prefect of studies.
Guinee arrived in Australia, 8 October 1902, and taught at Xavier College and St Patrick's College, 1902-13. Then he engaged in parish ministry at Hawthorn, 1913-15, North Sydney, 1915-16, and Sevenhill, 1916-19. He was superior for the last few years of his life, Finally dying of cancer of the throat.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father Timothy Guinee (1851-1919)

Born at Banteer, Co. Cork, entered the Society in 1893. He spent one year of his regency at the Crescent, 1880-81. In 1888 he was ordained at Louvain and on his return to Ireland was master and prefect of studies at Mungret College. He left for Australia in 1902 and spent many years as master or at work in the church at Melbourne.

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

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

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

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 17th Year No 1 1942

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

Irish Province News 58th Year No 3 1983

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

Obituary & ◆ The Clongownian, 1983

Fr Aubrey Gwynn (1892-1912-1983)

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

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 30 : December 1983

PORTRAIT FROM THE PAST : FATHER AUBREY GWYNN

Sister Sheila Lucey

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Gwynn, John, 1866-1915, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/1396
  • Person
  • 12 June 1866-12 October 1915

Born: 12 June 1866, Youghal, County Cork
Entered: 18 October 1884, Loyola House, Dromore, County Down
Ordained: 1899, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1903
Died: 12 October 1915, Béthune, France - Military Chaplain

Member of the Mungret College, Limerick community at the time of death
Younger brother of William - RIP 1950
Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1892 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1902 at Linz Austria (ASR) making Tertianship

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education at Coláiste Iognáid.

He studied Philosophy at Louvain and Theology at Milltown. He also did Regency in the Colleges, and at one stage was a Teacher for the Juniors. He was a man of brilliant achievements academically. He was for some years at Crescent as a Teacher and Operarius. He gave Lenten Lectures at Crescent and Gardiner St, reputedly brilliantly. For some years before he became a Chaplain to the troops he acted as Dean of Residence at University Hall.
1914 He became Chaplain to the Irish Guards and continued with them until his death in France 12 October 1915

The following Tribute was paid to him in a letter from Desmond Fitzgerald, Captain Commanding 1st Battalion Irish Guards 16/10/1915 :
“Dear Father Delaney, You will of course by now hard of Father Gwynn’s death, and I know full well that the universal sorrow felt by all ranks of this Battalion will be shared by you and all the members of your University, who knew him so well. No words of mind could express, or even give a faint idea of the amount of good he has done us all out here, or how bravely he has faced all dangers, and how cheerful and comforting he has always been. It is no exaggeration to say that he was loved by every officer, NCO and man in the battalion.
The Irish Guards owe him a deep and lasting debt of gratitude, and as long as any of us are left who saw him out here we shall never forget his wonderful life, and shall strive to lead a better life by following his example. The unfortunate shell landed in the door of the Headquarter dugout just as we had finished luncheon, on October 11th. Father Gwynn received one or two wounds in the leg, as well as a piece of shell through his back in his lung. He was immediately bound up and sent to hospital, but died from shock and injuries at 8am the next morning, October 12th. he was buried in the cemetery at Bethune at 10am October 13th. May his should rest in peace. But, although he has been taken from us, he will still be helping us, and rather than grieve at our loss, we must rejoice at his happiness. Yours sincerely, Desmond Fitzgerald..”

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/201511/john-gwynn-sj-no-greater-love/

John Gwynn SJ – “No greater love”
A memorial mass took place on Sunday 11 October 2015 at the Sacred Heart parish in Caterham, Surrey, to commemorate the centenary of the death of Irish Jesuit Fr. John Gwynn, who was Chaplain to the Irish Guards and who served in France during the First World War. Many knew him as a powerful and eloquent preacher at the Sacred Heart Church and at St. Francis Xavier’s Church in Dublin, where questions of sociology had a strong attraction for him. Fergus O’Donoghue SJ who represented the Irish province at the event said, “I was very glad that myself and Brother Michael O’Connor (former Royal Marine and British Jesuit) had gone because the local parish people had made such an effort, and there was a display on John Gwynn’s life, and generally it was just great.” A memorial plaque was erected in the Church by the Irish Guards who were based at Caterham barracks nearby. Bishop Richard Moth, the bishop of the diocese and former bishop to the Armed Forces, noted the enthusiasm of the Sacred Heart parish and presided over the special mass on Sunday evening. “It was by chance that an article of Fr. Gwynn was seen online by his grandniece from Massachusetts,” says Fr. Fergus. “She got in touch and sent a message. It was lovely because the whole parish got involved.” The mass itself featured the song We Remember You by children from St. Francis’ School as well as the recessional hymn Be Thou My Vision, based on St. Patrick’s Breastplate. Lord Desmond Fitzgerald, the Captain of the 1st Irish Guards has written: “It is certainly no exaggeration to say that Fr Gwynn was loved by every officer, N.C.O. and man in the battalion.” Furthermore, an Irish Guard who was also an Old Belvederian spoke of the Jesuit’s presence at the Medical Officer’s dugout so that he could be near his injured men, and that he organised sports and concerts to keep up morale. He even returned to the battlefield despite being crippled after a shell wounded him.
John Gwynn SJ experienced internal suffering during his lifetime. “It’s quite clear that he had a condition like bipolar disorder (a mental illness characterised by extreme high and low moods), then known as suffering from nerves,” says Fr. O’Donoghue. Through all of this, he was extremely brave and he was an enormously successful chaplain. Fr. Gwynn was fatally wounded in action near Vermelles, Northern France on 11 October 1915 and he died the next day at 50 years old. It was said that he would have been happy to die as a ‘soldier of God’.

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

Note from William Gwynn Entry :
William Gwynn’s father was a military man and had been transferred to Galway by the time that William and his younger brother John (who also entered the Society) were ready for their schooling. Both boys were educated at St Ignatius' College Galway.
.........After tertianship at Linz, Austria, 1901-02 with his brother John

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John Gwynn 1866-1915
Fr John Gwynn was born in Youghal on June 18th 1866, and received his early education at St Ignatius Galway. He was one of those who made his novitiate at Loyola Dromore.

He was a man of brilliant attainments. His Lenten Lectures delivered at Limerick and Gardiner Street, were outstanding, and were published afterwards under the title of “Why am I a Catholic?” He acted as Principal of University Hall for some years.

In 1914 he became Chaplain to the Irish Guards, and was killed in France on October 12th 1915. The following are one or two excerpts from the Officer Commanding the Battalion at the time of his death :

“The Irish Guards owe him a deep and lasting debt of gratitude, and as long as any of us are left out here, we shall never forget his wonderful life, and shall strive to lead a better life by following his example. No words of mind could express or even give a faint idea of the amount of good e has done us all out here, or how bravely he faced all dangers, and how cheerful and comforting he has always been. It is certainly no exaggeration to say that he was loved by every Officer, NCO, and man in this battalion.

He was buried in the cemetery at Bethune at 10am on October 13th 1915. May he rest in peace”.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1916

Obituary

Father John Gwynn SJ

Though not. a pupil of Belvedere, Father Gwynn was connected with the College by teaching here for some time, and many who knew him here or came into contact with him in other ways will be glad to read the following brief sketch of his time as Chaplain to the Forces. It was sent to us by one of the Irish Guards, who writes of Father Gwynn thus :

“This account does not in any way exaggerate his doings. On the contrary more could be said by those who were more intimate friends of his.

When he joined us in Meteren last November twelve months. I had a conversation with him, in which I learned he was. an old Belvederian, but before my time. He was actually loved by the men of our battalion, and too much cannot be said of the way in which he looked after each and every man of the battalion.

His first experiences were very rough. It was January 15th when I saw him wading in water up to his chest to reach the front line of trenches to comfort the men with his jolly conversation.

He was as well known and appreciated by the other battalions which comprised our Brigade as he was with us, and made friends with all. He was taken to hospital suffering with lumbago a few days prior to the 18th May, 1915, when I was wounded. His loss was a great blow to all ranks: Not being present at the time, I can only imagine the regret his death caused to all those who had made his acquaintance”

The following is the account referred to :

A short appreciation of his work while he was attached to the 1st Bn Irish Guards, on active service, from November, 1914, until his death from wounds received in action on October 11th, 1915.

This account, written by request, is an attempt to give, quite shortly and . simply, a rough idea of Father Gwynn's work at the front with the 1st. Battalion Irish Gụards. No words could express the amount of good he did, and it is impossible to draw a true picture of his life and work. Only those who knew him personally and watched him, out there, can realise how wonderful his work was.

For many years before the outbreak of war, Father Gwynn was one of the governing body at University College, Dublin, but as soon as the war began he volunteered to act as Chaplain on active service. In the first week of November, 1914, he was attached to the 1st Battalion Irish Guards, and joined it forth with, having, as he often said afterwards, but little idea of what his work would be. He was our first war-time Chaplain, so there were no precedents to follow, and he had to strike out his own line. When he joined us he found the Battalion resting and re-equipping in a little French village; for it had just come through very bad days at Ypres, and was greatly reduced in officers and men. We remained in this village until the week before Christmas, and during this rest we were reinforced by large drafts from home. Father Gwynn at once set to work to get to know the men, and very quickly they understood each other, for he and they were Irishmen. His tact and judgment gained for him the confidence of officers and men, and after a very few days he settled into his new surroundings as if he had been in them from the beginning.

From Christmas week onwards the Battalion was employed in trench warfare, and underwent many vicissitudes. Father Gwynn shared with us every hardship and trial throughout the wet winter; he lived with us, and became part of the Battalion. When we were in the trenches or in action he stayed with the Medical Officer at the Battalion Regimental Aid Post, near the Headquarters - the place to which wounded men are taken for first dressings. At other times he would share the Medical Officer's dug-out, so that he might lose no time if a man were wounded but go to him if need be at any moment of the day or night. During the day he would constantly go round the trenches, even when they were being shelled, and visit and talk to the men, heedless of his own danger.

When the Battalion was in billets or resting he would hold services, hear confessions, or give help to any man in his own billet, or in the local churches. Those churches in which he held his services had often had their roofs blown off by German shells. He was ready, too, to take an active part in any concerts or sports for the men, and employed his spare time in training some of them to form a choir to sing at his services. As far as was humanly possible he attended all the wounded and dying, and administered Extreme Unction whenever this was necessary; and he invariably read the burial service over men who were killed, even when it meant, as often it did especially after the British advance in September - that he must stand up at night in the open on a battlefield swept by bullets.

On February 6th, 1915; when an attack was being made, Father Gwynn was slightly wounded by a shell which burst near him. He was shaken, but remained at duty. In April and early May he suffered much from lumbago, but pluckily stayed at work till the middle of May, when, completely crippled, he was carried into hospital on a stretcher. He was absent two months, staying at different French hospitals. During that time another. Chaplain was posted to the Battalion to carry on his work, but Father Gwynn returned in mid-July, before lie was really fit to do so. By sheer force of will, and with the necessary amount of care, he gradually regained a great part .of. his normal health, but he was never quite so strong as he had been before his illness. Nevertheless, from the moment he returned to the Battalion he took up the work he had begun, and continued it right up to his death. In October, 1915, we were employed in holding and consolidating the trenches captured from the Germans, and those days were some of the most unpleasant in our experience. At this time more, if possible, than at any other, did Father Gwynn show the most splendid courage and unselfish care for the men. Certain portions of the line came in for vigorous shelling, and the trench was often blown in by aerial torpedoes, which in some cases buried a number of men. At the worst place would be found Father Gwynn, always ready to help the wounded, or to administer the Blessed Sacrament to the dying. He made it his unaltering practice to write to the relations of any man that had fallen, and in this way his words will have brought comfort to many desolated Irish homes. Thus each day he did his work.

On October 11th, 1915, he was at luncheon in the headquarters dug-out with four companions when a German shell landed and burst in the doorway. Father Gwynn received many wounds in different parts of the body, and one piece of shell struck his back and pierced a lung. That same shell also wounded our Commanding Officer, so that he too afterwards died, and slightly wounded another. Luckily, the Medical Officer was present, and Father Gwynn's wounds were at once. dressed; and, although he was in great pain, he was only unconscious for a few minutes. The stretcher on which he lay was carried with difficulty down a long communication trench-in many places blown in by German shells - and eventually reached the motor ambulance that took him to the Officers' Hospital at Béthune, where he received every possible attention. But it was the end. He died at eight o'clock next morning, October 12th, 1915, from wounds and shock. He was buried at 10 am on October 13th in the Béthune cemetery, where lie so many other officers and men who have likewise given their lives for their country. The burial service was read by Mgr Keating, the head of the Roman Catholic Chaplains in France. All the men would have wished to be present, but the Battalion was still in the trenches, and few could be spared. Yet many other officers and men of other units managed to be there, It can truly be said that the news of his. death was felt as a blow by every officer, NCO and man, and each one realised the loss, pot merely of their chaplain, but of a dearly loved friend.

A monument of marble has been raised by the Battalion over his grave, which bears these two inscriptions :

RIP REV FATHER JOHN GWYNN SJ,
attached to the
1st Irish Guards
He died at Béthune on October 12th,
1915, from wounds received in action
near Vermelles on October 11th,

  1. Aged 44 years.

This Monument has been erected by all ranks of the 1st Bat. Irish Guards in grateful Remembrance of their Beloved Chaplain, Father Gwynn, who was with them on Active Service for nearly, 12 months from Nov 1914, until his death, and shared with unfailing devotion all their trials and hardships.

Father Gwynn was fortunate in his death, and in the cause for which he died, and also fortunate, as he often said, in finding in the 1st Battalion of Irish Guards a splendid and worthy field for his work - a body of men capable of vision and of inspiration as well as. of courage and faith. And now can only be said over again what I said in the beginning : by his deeds, which cannot be expressed in words, he has left to those who saw him at his work an in indelible memory, and -an inspiration.

May his soul rest in peace!”

◆ The Clongownian, 1916

Obituary

Father John Gwynn SJ

Chaplain to the 1st Irish Guards

Born 1866. OT 1884. Died of wounds, Béthune, Oct. 12th, 1915

The following notice of Father Gwynn's death appeared in the Freeman's Journal :

We regret to announce the receipt of intelligence from the War Office by his relatives of the death at the Front of the Rev John Gwynn SJ. The sad event took place on the 12th inst. Father Gwynn had been at the Front almost since the beginning of the war, having been appointed Chaplain to the Irish Guards. He was wounded early this year, and though ill and suffering since that time, and occasionally in hospital, remained at his post as long as he was able. His loss will be greatly felt, not only by the men of his gallant regiment, but by all who had the pleasure and honour of knowing him and his work in Dublin. He was a Galway man, born half a century ago, entered the Society of Jesus in 1884, and was a student at historic Louvain, subsequently becoming a professor in Clongowes and in the University College, Dublin. He was a powerful and eloquent preacher, and questions of sociology had a strong attraction for him.

One of the papers he read some years ago before the Catholic Truth Society on social problems in Dublin was of special interest. His Lenten Lectures at St Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street, received much attention.

The high esteem in which Father Gwynn was held by both officers and men is shown in the following letter from the late Lord Desmond Fitzgerald to Father William Delany SJ

1st Batt, Irish Guards, BEF,
October 16th, 1936

Dear Rev Father Delany,
You will, of course, have heard by now of Father Gwynn's death, and I know full well that the universal sorrow felt by all ranks of this battalion will be shared by you and all the members of your University, who knew him so well. No words of mine could express or even give a faint idea of the amount of good he has done us all out here, or how bravely he has faced all dangers, and how cheerful and comforting he has always been. It is certainly no exaggeration to say that he was loved by every officer, NCO and man in the battalion. The Irish Guards owe him a deep and lasting debt of gratitude, and as long as any of us are left who saw him out here we shall never forget his wonderful life, and shall strive to lead a better life by following his example. The unfortunate shell landed in the door of the Headquarter dug-out just as we had finished luncheon, on October 11th. Father Gwynn received one or two wounds in the leg, as well as a piece of shell in his back through his lung. He was immediately bound up and sent to hospital, but died from shock and his injuries at 8 am the next morning, October 12th. He was buried in the cemetery at Bethune, at 10 am, on October 13th. May his soul rest in peace. Although he has been taken from us, he will still be helping us; and rather than grieve at our loss, we must rejoice at his happiness.

Yours truly,
DESMOND FITZGERALD,
Captain Commanding 1st Batt, Irish Guards.

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1916

Obituary

Father John Gwynn SJ

Most of our readers will have heard of the death of Father Gwynn, which occurred on October 12th, 1915, in France, where he was acting as Chaplain to the First Battalion of the Irish Guards. Our College has much reason to mourn his loss. He was on our Teaching Staff in 1902-03 and again in 1913-14. Soon after the outbreak of the war he volunteered as an Army Chaplain, and those in this house can well remember the eagerness with which he awaited the all too tardy, acceptance of his offer by the War Office, for he was in spirit and temper a born soldier In November, 1914, he was attached to the 1st Battalion of the Irish Guards as, their Chaplain. He was no stranger to that regiment; for he gave retreats to them more than once at Knightsbridge and Caterham.

The life of a Chaplain at the front must be a busy one; and certainly Father John did not spare himself: “When the men were in the trenches” a Guardsman says of him, “he constantly shared the Medical Officer's quarters, either in his dug-out or at the Regimental Aid Post, where the wounded were taken for first dressings”. It was his practice also to write to the relations of any man that had fallen, and thus was the means of bringing consolation to many an Irish home. He still managed to spare time to take part in any concerts or sports got up by the men, and he contrived to train some of them to form a choir for his services. He had indeed a great fund of gaiety and bonhomie, and he had much of the boy about him. It was a treat to hear him render “Clare's Dragoons”, “De Wet” or “Corcabaskin”. He had great gifts as a lecturer too, and as a preacher. At the front he had much to suffer. Shortly after his arrival he was knocked down by the concussion of a shell and slightly wounded by a splinter. He soon, however, recovered consciousness and did not even go off duty. On another occasion, while ministering to the wounded under fire, it would seem that he was almost buried under a fall of sand and clay, caused by the bombardment. He had to spend a month or two in a hospital in France because of severe lumbago, and indeed returned to his men before he was completely cured. Finally, on the 11th of October he was in a dug-out with some of the officers when an enemy shell landed in the doorway and, exploding, injured several of them. Portion of it pierced Father Gwynn's left lung, and he was wounded in several other places. Taken at once to hospital he lingered through the night, preserving perfect consciousness. Having received the Last Sacraments he expired calmly on the morning of the 12th. He was buried at Bethune next day with solemn rites, the last blessing being read by Mgr Keatinge, Senior Chaplain to the Forces, who in a letter subsequently described him as “a splendid priest, absolutely devoted to his men”. Another soldier who shared his dangers has written of him - “By his deeds he has left to those who saw him at his work an indelible memory and an inspiration”.

The marble monument which the Irish Guards have raised to his memory in the churchyard at Bethune has this inscription :

R.I.P.
REV. FATHER JOHN GWYNN, S.J.,
Attached to the
1st Irish Guards,
He died at Bethune on October 12th, 1915,
from wounds received in action near
Vermelles on October 11th, 1915,
Aged 49 years.
This monument has been erected by all Ranks of the 1st,
Bat. Irish Guards in
grateful Remembrance of their Beloved
Chaplain, Father Gwynn, who was with
them on Active Service for nearly twelve
months, from Nov 1914, until his death,
and shared with unfailing devotion all
their trials and hardships.

To his sister, Mrs. Daly, Mount Auburn, Mullingar, and to his brother, Father William Gwynn SJ, of Manresa, Norwood, S Australia, we offer our deepest sympathy. RIP

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Community

Father John Gwynn (1866-1915)

Was born in Youghal and received his early education at St Ignatius' College, Galway. He entered the Society in 1884 and made his higher studies at Louvain and Milltown Park where he was ordained in 1899. Father Gwynn spent three years as master at the Crescent, 1903-06. With the exception of one year, 1910-11, when he was temporarily employed as lecturer in theology at Milltown Park, he was henceforth a member of the community at UCD, first at St Stephen's Green and later at Leeson St. He was the first warden of Winton House, the parent of Modern University Hall, Hatch St, Dublin. Father Gwynn volunteered as chaplain in the first world war and earned fame for his courage and devotion to his men. He died in the discharge of his duties as a priest.

Gwynn, William, 1865-1950, Jesuit priest and chaplain

  • IE IJA J/1397
  • Person
  • 17 March 1865-22 October 1950

Born: 17 March 1865, Youghal, County Cork
Entered: 20 October 1883, Milltown Park Dublin; Dromore, County Down
Ordained: 29 July 1900, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1903
Died: 22 October 1950, Milltown Park, Dublin

First World War Chaplain

Older brother of John - RIP 1915

by 1888 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1890 at Exaeten College Limburg, Netherlands (GER) studying
Came to Australia 1902
by 1902 at Linz Austria (ASR) making Tertianship
by 1919 Military Chaplain : 8th Australian Infantry Brigade, AIF France

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
William Gwynn’s father was a military man and had been transferred to Galway by the time that William and his younger brother John (who also entered the Society) were ready for their schooling. Both boys were educated at St Ignatius' College Galway. Gwynn entered the Society at Milltown Park, 20 October 1883, and studied rhetoric as a junior up to II Arts at the Royal University while living at Milltown Park, 1885-87. Philosophy was at Louvain and Exaeten. 1887-90, and regency at Belvedere Clongowes, and Mungret, 1890-97. Theology followed at Milltown Park. 1897-1901 After tertianship at Linz, Austria, 1901-02 with his brother John, Gwynn, he was sent to Australia where he taught at Riverview, St Aloysius' College and St Patrick's College, 1902-11, before engaging in parish ministry at Sevenhill, 1911-13, and Norwood 1913-17. He taught for a further few years at St Patrick’s College 1917-18, before becoming a military chaplain of the 8th Infantry Brigade AIF, 1918-20, travelling to Egypt, France and Germany. Gwynn returned to Ireland after the war and taught philosophy and mathematics at Mungret. He was later in charge of the People's Church at Clongowes until 1930, and then performed rural missionary work retreats with great vigor and success throughout the country, a ministry he enjoyed while in Australia. In 1930 he was transferred to parish work at Gardiner Street until 1944. In earlier he was in charge of the Night Workers' Sodality. For the last six years of his life he was attached to Milltown Park, living in great cheer and contentment, praying for the Society.
The Irish Province News, January 1951, described Gwynn as an original character. In whatever company he found himself he became the centre of interest by his wit and personality. He was extraordinarily outspoken and frank in his remarks about others and himself. He never made any secret about his own plans and projects. At first sight, he might have been seen as egotistical or cynical or a man who had shed many of the kindly illusions about human nature. But much of that frankness was part of his sense of humor and a pose, it helped to make him interesting and to amuse. He was not a man to give his best in ordinary, every day work. He wanted change and variety. He liked to plough a lonely furrow a man of original mind, who had his very personal way of looking at people and things. He had all the gifts of a preacher - appearance, voice, personality, an original approach to any subject, and a gift for a striking, arresting phrase. His retreats were memorable for their freshness and originality. As a confessor some respected him for being broad, sympathetic and understanding.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 26th Year No 1 1951

Milltown Park :
We regret to record the death, on. Oct. 22nd, of Milltown's Grand Old Man, Father William Gwynn. Only a few days before we had celebrated the Golden Jubilee of his priesthood and heard a message from him, wire-recorded in his sickroom.

Obituary :
Father William Gwynn
Fr. Gwynn, who died after a brief illness at Milltown Park on 22nd October, was born at Youghal, Co. Cork, on the 17th March, 1865. His father was a military man and had been transferred to Galway by the time that William and his younger brother John (who also entered the Society) were ready for their schooling. So, it was at St. Ignatius' College in that city that they both received their education. William entered the noviceship at Milltown Park on 20th October, 1883, and had Fr. William O’Farrell for Master of Novices and also for Superior when the new novitiate at Dromore was opened in May of the following year. He took his Vows at Milltown Park on 1st November, 1885, and studied rhetoric up to II Arts at the Royal University. He went to Louvain and Exaten (in Holland) for his philosophy, 1887-90, and in the latter year began his Colleges. He taught for six years at Belvedere, Clongowes and Mungret, in that order, and then studied theology at Milltown Park, where he was ordained on 29th July by Dr. William Walsh, Archbishop of Dublin. After his fourth year's theology he went, with his brother Fr. John, to Linz in Austria for his tertianship. In the autumn of 1902 Fr, William was sent to Australia, where he taught at Riverview, Sydney, for a year and then at St. Aloysius for six and at St. Patrick's, Melbourne, for two years. He was operarius at Sevenhill 1910-12 and at Norwood Residence for the following four years when he had charge of the men's sodality and the confraternity of “Bona Mors”. When at St. Patrick's, Melbourne, as master and operarius in 1918, he was appointed chaplain to the 8th Australian Infantry Brigade and travelled with his men to Egypt, France and Germany. He was not “demobbed” till 1920, and thereafter remained in the Province. For the next two years Fr. Gwynn was philosophy and mathematics master at Mungret College and then went to Clongowes, where he had charge of the People's Church till 1930. During this period he conducted retreats with great vigour and success up and down the country, a ministry to which he had devoted himself zealously when in Australia.
In 1930 Fr. William was transferred to Gardiner Street and was operarius till 1944. For the first dozen years of this period he was also in charge of the Night Workers' Sodality, in which he took a great interest. For the last six years of his life he was attached to Milltown Park, where he lived in great cheer and contentment, discharging his task of “orans pro Societate” agreeably and, we may well hope, fruitfully. Two days before his death a graceful tribute to him appeared in the papers on the occasion of the golden jubilee of his Ordination to the priesthood.
Fr. Gwynn was emphatically a character, an original. In whatever company he found himself, he became at once the centre of interest by his wit and personality. He was extraordinarily outspoken and frank in his remarks about others and himself. He never made any secret about his own plans and projects, about those little manifestations of self-interest which most people keep discreetly veiled. He was equally frank and outspoken about others. At first sight, one would think him egotistical, or cynical, or a man who had shed many of the kindly illusions about human nature. But much of that frankness was part of his sense of humour and a pose. It helped to make him interesting and to amuse.
He was not a man to give his best in ordinary, hum-drum, every clay work. He wanted change and variety; lie liked to plough a lonely furrow. He was a man of original mind, who had his own very personal way of looking at people and things. He had all the gifts of a preacher, appearance, voice, personality, a very original approach to any subject, and a gift of a striking, arresting phrase. His retreats, too, very memorable for their freshness and originality.
He was the least pharisaical of men. He aimed sedulously at concealing his solid piety and simple lively Faith. His rather disconcerting frankness, his trenchant wit, his talk about himself, were really a pose by which he tried to mask his spiritual inner self. It could not be said that he had a large spiritual following of people who looked to him for help. But what he missed in numbers was made up in quality and variety. It was well known that men of the world who got no help from other priests made Fr. Gwynn their confessor and friend. He was broad, sympathetic and understanding and no one knows the amount of good he did to those who came to depend on him. R.I.P

Halley, Thomas, 1578-1613, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1402
  • Person
  • 1578-21 November 1613

Born: 1578, Kilmallock, Co Limerick
Entered: 13 October 1605, Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 1605, Douai, France - pre Entry
Died: 21 November 1613, Saint-Winoc, Bergues, France - Belgicae Province (BELG)

Father was Robert and Mother was Joanne Verdon
Studied in Ireland, Douai and Lille. read 3 years Philosophy at Douai and 2 years Theology at Louvain
1611 Teaching Greek for 2 years at Louvain
1611 CAT “Strong constitution, upright though sometimes indiscreet. Rather mediocre, suited for Mission in Ireland, because of his local knowledge but also his readiness for work and powers of updating himself on the ways of others”
1617 Is in Ireland???

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Son of Robert and Johanna née Verdon
Studied partly in Ireland and partly at Douai under the Jesuits, and Ent after Ordination, received by BELG Provincial Oliverius
He was a very learned and pious Priest (cf Foley’s Collectanea)
(cf Tournay Diary MS, Brussels n 1016 p 557; Irish Ecclesiastical Record August 1874)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan :
Son of Robert and Joanna née Verdon
Had studied at Douai and was Ordained 1605 before Ent 13 October 1605 Tournai
After First Vows he taught Greek for two years
1609 Sent to Louvain to do more Theology
1612 Moved from Louvain to Berghe-Saint-Winoc where he died 21 November 1613
Noted for his command of Irish and so was in demand by the Irish Mission

Harrington, Nicholas, 1586-1614, Jesuit novice

  • IE IJA J/2331
  • Person
  • 1586-16 May 1614

Born: 1586, Northampton, England
Entered: 1613, Leuven, Belgium - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 1610, Spain - pre entry
Died: 16 May 1614, Leuven, Belgium - Angliae Province (ANG)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica”
Died a year after joining, just before the Noviceship was moved from Leuven to Liège

“A holy novice, most observant of religious obedience and discipline. On being seized with fever he earnestly begged for the last sacraments and received them just in time. His death was a saintly one”. (cf “Records SJ”, Vol i, pp 177, seq)

https://play.google.com/books/reader?id=iUMBAAAAQAAJ&hl=en&pg=GBS.PR12

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
HARRINGTON, NICHOLAS, died at St. John’s, Louvain, in 1614, just before the removal of the Members of that house to Liege

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.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1965

Obituary

Rev Denis Hayes SJ

In the 1963 “Belvederian” we numbered Father Hayes among the Jubilarians cele brating their firty years as a Jesuit. The fol lowing was written :

Father Denis Hayes SJ. Though not a past boy of the College, Father Hayes has good reason to be remembered by the College on the occasion of his Golden Jubilee, celebrated a few months after last year's “Belvederian” had been published. He came to the College as our “Father Minister” in the years 1937 and 1938. He returned in the year 1945 and for eighteen years he has shouldered the tedious and complicated task of keeping the account books of the College. We are in his debt in many ways for he has guided our steps and with his watchful eye has seen to our financial health or reported our attending sickness, We extend to him our thanks, best wishes and congratulations on being fifty years a Jesuit.

Father Denis did not survive very long after his Jubilee. During the last two years his health had deteriorated very much. For many years he had very much to suffer, but now a marked weakness appeared. On the 30th June he died suddenly in the Mater Hospital from a heart attack or cerebral haemorrhage, but with sufficient time to get a final anointing. He was in his 71st year and his 53rd in the Society. He was remark able for the simplicity and regularity of his life. He was most punctual in all his duties; punctuality is a very practical aspect of charity. He was most conscientious in keep ing his books as Bursar; no doubt he has his spiritual accounts similarly in good order and ready for the Divine Auditor. Death for him must have been no unexpected visitor; likely enough his visit was welcome to one who suffered so much. May God reward him in that superabundant measure prom ised to those who leave all things and follow Him.

Head, Thomas, 1842-1916, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1426
  • Person
  • 14 January 1842-22 June 1916

Born: 14 January 1842, Limerick City
Entered: 09 October 1879, Milltown Park
Ordained: 30 November 1865, Rome, Italy - pre Entry
Final Vows: 02 February 1891, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 22 June 1916, Mungret College, Co Limerick

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education was at Crescent. He then went to the Irish College in Rome, and was a remarkable student. He was Ordained there for the Limerick Diocese.

After his Noviceship he was sent for further Theology to Louvain, and made his final Ad Grad exam at Clongowes.
He later was sent to Mungret, becoming Rector there in 1888.
1891 He was appointed Rector at Crescent.
He retired to Mungret and died in hospital 22 June 1916, and is buried at Mungret.
He was very diminutive in stature!

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Thomas Head 1842-1916
Fr Head was born in Limerick on June 14th 1842, studied at the Crescent College and then proceeded to the Irish College in Rome to study for the Diocese. For some years he was a curate at St Michael’s parish, Limerick city.

He entered the Jesuit novitiate in October 1879 at Milltown Park. He did further theological studies at Louvain before going to Mungret as Professor. He spent practically all his religious life between Mungret and the Crescent. In 1838 he succeeded Fr René as Rector of Mungret, and in 1891 he took over the Rectorship of the Crescent. He spent his last years as Spiritual Father and Professor in Mungret.

He was a remarkable man, a great lover of history and endowed with quite an extraordinary memory. The community at Mungret in those years was rich in men of forthright and strong characters. Fr William henry as rector, Fr Head and Fr Ronan on the staff. The pursuit of truth at recreation was so keen, that it used call for the intervention of the Rector to reduce the contestants, chiefly Frs Head and Ronan, to silence.

On entering the Society, Fr head bestowed his library, which was by no means inconsiderable, to Mungret. He died in Limerick city on June 27 and was buried in Mungret.

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1916

Obituary

Father Thomas Head SJ

Our Past of almost every year since the foundation of the College must have heard with deep regret of the death of Father Head. On 30th November, 1915, Father Head celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of his ordination and seemed to have several years of life before him. But in early spring an old complaint from which he had suffered a great deal began to cause him considerable pain and inconvenience, and it was decided that he should undergo an operation. The operation was as successful as could be expected in a man of his age and constitution. But it left him with little vitality. For weeks he grew weaker and his mind, which had been failing for months before this, went nearly completely. He died quietly on 22nd June, after receiving the Last Sacraments. At the Mass for the repose of his soul, which was celebrated at the Crescent Church, Limerick, a large number of priests, some of them old friends, attended. He lies buried in the Cemetery of Mungret College, beside the grave of Father Ronan.

No one could boast of a longer connection with the College than Father Head. No one has so completely; so ungrudgingly devoted his life and talents to that one house as he. He was on the Staff of the College when it opened in September 1882. Next year he was. Minister, and from 1838-91 he was Rector and at the same time Moderator of the Apostolic School. In 1891 he went as Rector to the Crescent College, Limerick, whence he returned after a few years to Mungret, where lie lived till his death. Thus nearly all the years spent in the Society of Jesus were given to Mungret. Those who, as boys, had left Mungret thirty years ago and came back as middle-aged men found Father Head there still, a little feebler, a little greyer, but otherwise not much changed. The memory. of Father Head is probably that which will remain longest with all past Mungret men.

Father Head was born in Limerick City in 1842. Along with the present Bishop, Most Rev Dr O'Dwyer, he was among the first pupils at the Crescent College SJ when it was opened. The personality of Father Thomas Kelly SJ, who was then Rector of the Crescent, always remained a force in his life. His ecclesiastical studies were done at Rome and at Carlow College. He loved to speak of his time at Rome; and as a priest he visited the city several times. To a man of his temperament the two most prominent aspects of Rome appealed very powerfully - Catholic Rome and historic Rome. He knew the city well, and to the end of his life he could be easily got to pour out some of his wealth of information on its buildings, its history, and its great men.

He was ordained on 30th November, 1865, and for fourteen years lived as a secular priest of the diocese of Limerick. He was curate at Cratloe (over against Mungret College across tbe Shannon), at Croom and at St John's Cathedral, Limerick. His exceptional qualities of mind and character made a deep impresi sion on the priests of the diocese, who always spoke of him in the highest terms. He used to declare, half jestingly and half in pride, that his fellow-curates had given him the highest honour in their power when they had appointed him Hon Treasurer of the Curate's Fund.

As a curate at St John's he had come across Father Ronan, and his entrance into the Society of Jesus may be regarded as due, in some measure, to this intimacy. Two years' noviceship at Milltown Park, Dublin, and a year given to repeat his Theology brought him to the year 1882 and to Mungret.

Iu Mungret he lived the life of a teacher and a student. His work of teaching and, while he was Rector, of administration, kept him busy enough, but he found time to get in an extraordinary amount of reading, or rather study. The standard literary works in the English language he had read and re-read; and with French and Italian literature he was also widely familiar. But his chief delight was history, and there were few men who had read history as widely and retained it as well as Father Head. His knowledge of European History, of early medieval and modern times was singularly exact and full. As Father Sutton says of him, he seemed to have taken all history for his province. Even towards the close of liis life, when he was beginning to forget the names of his own Community, his grasp of history was as firm and as exact as before. But he had the defects of his qualities, and his mind was retentive and accumulative rather than original.

But his learning had not puffed him up; and he remained always as simple and docile as a child. He was an excellent religious, and his submission to his superiors and his exact observance of rule were as renarkable as his learning. He had a genuine love of teaching, and if knowledge of his subject were the only qualification few teachers would have been equipped like Father Head. His shy and retiring disposition1 kept him from anything like intimate personal relations with those he taught. But the boys knew him and respected him. Nobody could have come in contact with such a man without carrying off permanent memories of his learning, his humility, his industry, and his conscientiousness.

Father W Sutton SJ, himself a member of the original Staff of Mungret, who knew Father Head intimately, has written a kind letter of appreciation. Indisposition prevented him from paying a fuller and inore formal třibute to an old friend:

He was a rare character. I never met anyone who so favourably impressed me all round. He was the fairest-minded man one could meet. He was always kind and broad-minded. No doubt he had his limitations, like every one, but he was just and level-headed, considerate, unselfish, and most hard working.. He was most conscientious in everything he undertook, and a first-rate teacher. His knowledge was extraordinary, and he seemed interested in all intellectual pursuits. His memory was very remarkable. He was in fact a living cyclopedia. He seemed to have taken history for his province. I cannot recall any instance when he was not able to give information full and accurate of historical facts - chapters, periods, dates, etc. He would have been an ornament to any society, and certainly he was a most useful and highly appreciated member of the Order to which he belonged. When one remembers how frail he was physically it is a marvel to consider all he did and was. “We shall not see his like again”. 'That one like him should have lived years beyond “the allotted period” and working almost to the last is truly wonderful. His company was delightful; he was so full of information and so modest in communicating it. That he is gone to his great reward is the great consolation of us who are so much tlie poorer for his loss”.

RIP

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father Thomas Head (1842-1916)

Was born in this city and was one of the first pupils of the re-established Jesuit college of St Munchin. He entered Maynooth with another class fellow, Edward O'Dwyer, one day to be Bishop of Limerick. After his ordination, Father Head served as a curate in the diocese of Limerick until 1879 when he entered the Society. He was master in the Crescent in 1887-88 and returned in 1891 as rector, when he was to spend five years in office. Father Head returned to Mungret where he filled the office of procurator and was lecturer in English to the Arts classes preparing for the examinations of the Royal University.

Hearn, Joseph, 1854-1941, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1429
  • Person
  • 05 August 1854-22 November 1941

Born: 05 August 1854, Ballinrobe, County Mayo
Entered: 31 October 1878, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1890
Final Vows: 02 February 1896, St Ignatius, Riverview, Sydney, Australia
Died: 22 November 1941, Loyola College, Watsonia, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed : HIB to ASL 05/04/1931

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

First World War chaplain

by 1888 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
Came to Australia 1892
by 1917 Military Chaplain : 7th Infantry Battalion

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :

Note from John Gately Entry :
Father Gately worked up to the end. He heard Confessions up to 10pm and was dead by 2am. Four hours, and perhaps most of that sleeping! Father Charles Morrough heard groaning and went down, and Father Joseph Hearn, Superior, gave him the Last Sacraments.

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/blog/damien-burke/anzac-archives-and-the-bullshit-detector/

On Saturday 25 April, the annual dawn Anzac commemoration will take place. It is the centenary of the failed Anzac engagement at Gallipoli. Six Jesuits, five of them Irish-born, served with the Australian Imperial Forces in the First World War. Frs Joseph Hearn and Michael Bergin both served at Gallipoli.

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/commemorating-the-sesquicentenary-of-the-arrival-of-irish-jesuits-in-australia/

Commemorating the sesquicentenary of the arrival of Irish Jesuits in Australia
This year the Australian Province of the Jesuits are commemorating the sesquicentenary of the arrival of Irish Jesuits in Australia. Australia became the first overseas mission of the Irish Jesuit Province. To mark the occasion the Archdiocese of Melbourne are organising a special thanksgiving Mass in St Patrick’s Cathedral, Melbourne 27 September. On 20 June Damien Burke, Assistant Archivist, Irish Jesuit Archives gave a talk at the 21st Australasian Irish Studies conference, Maynooth University, titled “The archives of the Irish Jesuit Mission to Australia, 1865-1931”. In his address Damien described the work of this mission with reference to a number of documents and photographs concerning it that are held at the Irish Jesuit Archives.
Irish Jesuits worked mainly as missionaries, and educators in the urban communities of eastern Australia. The mission began when two Irish Jesuits Frs. William Lentaigne and William Kelly, arrived in Melbourne in 1865 at the invitation of Bishop James Alipius Goold, the first Catholic bishop of Melbourne. They were invited by the Bishop to re-open St. Patrick’s College, Melbourne, a secondary school, and to undertake the Richmond mission. From 1865 onwards, the Irish Jesuits formed parishes and established schools while working as missionaries, writers, chaplains, theologians, scientists and directors of retreats, mainly in the urban communities of eastern Australia. By 1890, 30% of the Irish Province resided in Australia.
By 1931, this resulted in five schools, eight residences, a regional seminary in Melbourne and a novitiate in Sydney. Dr Daniel Mannix, archbishop of Melbourne, showed a special predication for the Jesuits and requested that they be involved with Newman College, University of Melbourne in 1918. Six Jesuits (five were Irish-born) served as chaplains with the Australian Forces in the First World War and two died, Frs Michael Bergin and Edwards Sydes. Both Michael Bergin and 62 year-old Joe Hearn, earned the Military Cross. Bergin was the only Catholic chaplain serving with the Australian Imperial Force to have died as a result of enemy action in the First World War.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Joseph Hearn was an Old Boy of St Stanislaus College, Tullamore, before its amalgamation with Clongowes. He entered the Society at Milltown Park, 31 October 1878, at the age of 24. He taught at Tullabeg College after juniorate studies, 1881-84, studied philosophy at Milltown Park, 1884-89, and theology at Louvain and Milltown Park, 1887-91. He
was then appointed socius to the master of novices while he completed his tertianship at Tullabeg College.
Hearn came to Australia and taught at St Patrick's College, 1892-96, and Riverview for a short time in 1896. He was appointed superior and parish priest of Richmond, 1896-1914, and was a mission consulter at the same time. Then he became a military chaplain and served with the Australian Expeditionary Force in its campaign in the Dardanelles. He served with the 7th in Belgium and then with the 2nd infantry Battalion. He was with the Australian Imperial Force (AIP), headquarters in the UK, returning to Australia early in 1917. He
was awarded the Military Cross for his service.
Upon his return, he resumed parish work at Lavender Bay, 1917-18; North Sydney, 1918-22, where he was parish priest, superior and Sydney Mission consulter, and Hawthorn, 1922-31, at one time minister then superior and parish priest. Despite old age, he was appointed rector of Loyola College, Greenwich, 1931-33, and when the house of formation moved to Watsonia, Vic., became its first rector, 1934-40. His final appointment was parish work at Richmond, Vic.
Hearn was called 'blood and iron Joe', and lived up to this by the severity of his manner, both with himself and others. He did not relate well to women, but men liked him. He had a vein of sardonic humor that suited well with the temper of the First AIF He joined the army at the age of 60. Though his service in the army tended to overshadow his other work, the real high point of his career was his long period as parish priest of Richmond; the parish schools especially are a monument to him.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Entered as Brother Novice. After 6 months postulancy was admitted as a Scholastic Novice

Heelan, Patrick A, 1926-2015, Jesuit priest

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Georgetown salutes Fr Heelan
in Pat Coyle

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

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 159 : Spring 2015

Obituary

Fr Patrick (Paddy) Heelan (1926-2015)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Paul Andrews

Interfuse No 114 : Summer 2002

60 YEARS IN THE SOCIETY OF JESUS

Patrick Heelan

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Interfuse No 125 : Autumn 2005

PATRICK HEELAN : “LE PETIT PHILOSOPHE” (1)

Patrick A Heelan

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Hehir, Noel, 1898-1947, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1438
  • Person
  • 20 December 1898-10 June 1947

Born: 20 December 1898, Richmond, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Entered: 11 March 1917, Loyola Greenwich, Australia (HIB)
Ordained: 31 July 1929, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 15 August 1939
Died: 10 June 1947, Holy Name Seminary, Christchurch, New Zealand - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Younger brother of Thomas (Tom) - RIP 1955

by 1923 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Noel Hehir was a meticulous scholar with a profound respect for humane learning. He was educated by the Christian Brothers and at Xavier College. He entered the Society 11 March 1917, studied in Dublin, gaining first class honors in Greek and Latin. He studied philosophy in Louvain, spent a year teaching at Clongowes, and read theology at Milltown Park, Dublin, where he showed a special taste for Greek petrology. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1929. He also gained an MA in classics during this time, specialising in the history of Roman colonisation.
After tertianship at St Beuno's, Wales, Hehir's first appointment was minister of juniors at Loyola, Greenwich and Watsonia, 1931-36. He directed the first group of Australian scholastics who did their humanities studies at home, either internally or at the university. He had very high ideals about the meaning of education, and was very strict in applying the Ratio Studiorum. He strongly fostered intellectual life, giving the scholastics an appreciation of current Catholic culture. To this end he built up the college library with Catholic literature, and kept the scholastics in contact with the literary side of Catholic Action.
Hehir spent 1937 as prefect of studies at Xavier College before serving two years as rector of St Aloysius' College. He was appointed rector of Riverview, 1940-45. He spent one year,
1946, as a lecturer of fundamental theology at Canisius College, Pymble, as well as lecturer in scholastic philosophy at St John's and Sancta Sophia Colleges, University of Sydney, before his last appointment as rector of the Holy Name Seminar Christchurch, New Zealand, in 1947. He died of cancer that year after a brief illness .
Other Jesuits described Hehir as a good religious, a classical scholar, hard on himself and others, and setting an example of Jesuit life as he had experienced it in Ireland and Belgium. His early death was a disappointment to many He was a highly respected lecturer, teacher, preacher and retreat-giver, as well as administrator and educator. The headmaster of Shore, L.C. Robson, in a tribute in the “Sydney Morning Herald” wrote of the respect and affection of the Headmasters Conference for him. He admired Hehir's scholarship and wise counsel, and the influence of his personal character and outlook on education, shown through his spiritual quality and resoluteness in standing for his conviction, but not less by his tolerance and breadth of sympathy. They enjoyed Hehir's company and conversation.
It was while he was rector of the two Sydney colleges that Hehir made his mark in education. He was a very active and influential member of educational organisations. He was instrumental in reviving the Classical Society of NSW, and was its president for two years, being a powerful advocate of the importance of the classics in secondary education. He was prominent on the Catholic Secondary Teachers Association, the NSW Teachers' Guild, and the Headmasters Conference. His colleagues appreciated his geniality and simplicity, his power of sympathy and his utter unselfishness.
During his short stay at St Aloysius' College, Hehir was totally involved in the life of the college, especially by teaching and coaching sport. He purchased property at East Willoughby
for the college sporting ground. As headmaster he was involved with every aspect of the boys education. He taught senior classes and coached junior boys' sport. Some found him over severe in his discipline procedures and even unjust. He had no secretary, and the administration of the college was generally done late at night. Yet this did not interfere with his strict religious regime. Prayer was very important for him.
Six years at Riverview made it possible for Hehir to have an influence on the college. He was probably the most scholarly-minded rector since Patrick Keating, and combined intellectual gifts with practical wisdom. He coached cricket and football, taught English and arithmetic to the lower grades, and tutored boys privately outside class. The number of day boys at the college increased during these years and he wiped out the college debt in 1943-a remarkable achievement.
In educational discourses he stressed the importance of character training and good discipline He warned students to beware of self-indulgence, and the need to practice self-sacrifice. Hehir wanted education to extend to the wider population, not just to the upper social classes. For this reason he introduced technical and rural subjects into the curriculum at Riverview. He believed that “happiness is an essential means for all truly effective education”.
Hehir was a scholar who thought deeply about how to make important Christian values and Jesuit ideals relevant. Non-Jesuits praised him for being a good companion, for his charm, goodness and learning. Some Jesuits found him less friendly and even austere, but nevertheless respected his spirit, intellect and hard work. They praised him for his personal charm, his amazing industry, and great readiness to be of service to anyone at any time. Many priests and religious appreciated him for the zeal and asceticism that he showed in his retreats. Hehir was a sound educationalist who expressed his ideas clearly and forcefully His style of leadership was fundamentally one of example-he expected people to do as he did. Ultimately, his gifts of nature and grace were considerable, and his influence during his short life was substantial.

Note from Tom Hehir Entry
He was devoted to his younger brother, Noel, and after his death, Tom seemed to lose his own grip on life.

Note from Johnny Meagher Entry
As Vice-Provincial he clashed with the Rector of Riverview, Noel Hehir, over his expulsion of members of the Meagher clan. Meagher overruled Hehir, an action Hehir never forgot. When the latter was dying he did not want to see Meagher.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 7th Year No 2 1932

Australia :

Fr. N. Hehir and Br. V. Moran (scholastic novice) sailed for Australia towards the end of last year. An interesting experience was waiting for them at Naples, which we tell in Fr. Hehir's own words “We found ourselves booked to take part in a remarkable ceremony at Naples. A printed programme announced that I was to say Mass in the Gesù coram Cardinali. Fortunately the boat was late. The Provincial said the Mass. On arriving, the two of us were led down the Church (in white soutanes) in the middle of a stirring sermon delivered by the Cardinal Archbishop. Then came a sermon by one of the two scholastics who were being farewelled. Then an embarrassing ceremony - a Neapolitan tradition - apparently followed. All the clergy, led by the Cardinal, kissed the feet of the four missionaries. Lunch followed in the novitiate. Finally we were raced back to catch our boat just before sailing hour.

Irish Province News 22nd Year No 3 1947

Obituary :
Fr. Noel Hehir (1898-1917-1947)
Fr. Hehir was born in Melbourne and received his secondary education at Xavier College, Kew. He entered the Society in 1917 and made his noviceship in Loyola, Greenwich. He then proceeded to Ireland, where he took his M.A. degree in Classics at the National University. He pursued his philosophical studies at Louvain, and then returned to Ireland, where he taught at Clongowes Wood College, Theological studies followed at Milltown Park, where he was ordained in 1929, and then tertianship in St. Beuno's. Returning to Australia after tertianship, his first appointment was that of Master of Juniors attending Melbourne University from “Loyola”, Watsonia. From there he went to Sydney to be Rector of St. Aloysius' College 1938 and 1939, after a year at St. Ignatius'. From 1940 to 1945 he was Rector of Riverview. For many years Fr. Hehir was Director of Retreats in New South Wales and Queensland. Last year he lectured in philosophy to students of Sancta Sophia College and St. John's College, within the University of Sydney.
Fr. Hehir possessed outstanding scholastic attainments, and, besides the sphere of education, was prominent in contributing papers to conferences, schools, etc. He was at one stage president of the Teachers' Guild of New South Wales and the Classical Association. For a period he was a member of the standing committee of the Headmasters' Conference of Australia, and was a leading member of various educational bodies.
Last year Fr. Hehir was professor of dogma in Pymble. Early this year he was appointed Rector of the newly-established National Minor Seminary (Holy Name Seminary) at Riccarton, Christchurch, New Zealand, which the Hierarchy decided to confide to the Society, and which was opened by His Excellency the Apostolic Delegate, Dr. Panico, on February 2nd.
Fr. Hehir died in New Zealand on June 11th. . The following tribute was paid to Fr. Hehir in a letter to the secular press by Mr. L. C. Robson, Headmaster of Sydney Church of England Grammar School :
“It would be a pity if the death of the Very Rev. Noel Hehir, S.J., were to pass without a public record of his great services. . . He was a man of the most rare quality, and few have won as deep respect and affection. He is best known here as a former Rector of St. Aloysius' and as Rector from 1940 to 1945 of St. Ignatius' College, Riverview. Two years ago he was appointed to Canisius College, Pymble, and last year was translated to take charge of the new College, known as the Holy Name Seminary, then being founded at Riccarton,
Christchurch.
As a headmaster, he left his mark on each of his schools in New South Wales. However, by his high scholarship and wise counsel and above all, by his personal character and outlook, he influenced educational life far beyond the limits of the Order to which he belonged.
Those who were associated with him in the Teachers' Guild, in the Classical Association, in public committees, in the headmasters conference and in the general life of the Great Public Schools were profoundly impressed and influenced by his spiritual quality and by his resoluteness in standing for his convictions, but not less by his tolerance and breadth of sympathy. Withal, he was a most delightful and stimulating companion, whether at a meeting of a learned society or at a football match or boat race.
It is difficult to do justice to the influence of such a man upon his contemporaries. It is certain that his old boys and his educational colleagues will feel the most profound sense of loss.

Fr. T. Mulcahy Kindly contributed the following appreciation :
“Fr. Noel Hehir had the unusual privilege of being escorted to Ireland by his master of novices, Fr. George Byrne, who was returning home to assume the same responsible post here, The route travelled was also perhaps unusual because it included the U.S.A. On his arrival in Rathfarnham, Noel Hehir was welcomed with the customary invitation to have a swim in the lake. He always said afterwards that he thought he would never come up alive from that plunge, so great and so unexpected was the difference in temperature between the water of the lake and the warm waters of his native Australia.
But he did come to the top. It was a habit he had and which he developed assiduously. Whether it was a question of a new language to be learned, a new subject to be fathomed or a new position to be filled, he had a way of winning through - not just surviving, but coming out on top. In the acquisition of human wisdom, as in the science of the saints, Noel Hehir worked hard, and no one merited success more.
He had the gift of ‘fitting in’ easily. No Junior was more popular in Rathfarnham, no philosopher was more popular in Louvain, no chaplain to the Royal Hospital for Incurables, Donnybrook, showed more understanding of the temperaments of the patients. His Belgian contemporaries at Louvain will sorely miss him. With them his cheer fulness, his diligence and his love of metaphysics were proverbial. Indeed, speaking from a natural point of view, I suspect that, for one with such a flair for philosophy, it must have been a trial that the calls of obedience summoned Noel in after years to tasks other than the keeping of essence and existence in order.
Like most Australians he was good at games. One recalls in particular his prowess at tennis. He was also very fond of walking. In his company the present writer has explored the Dublin bills and tramped across the plains around Louvain discussing the years that were yet to be. And should the walks on occasions be not too far but only to join parties at Sruthan or Glendhu, Noel Hehir with accustomed self-sacrifice would always be the first to stack up the fire or ‘lay the table’.
It was a privilege to have known one who was so admirable in religious observance and so loyal a friend. He died when not so old, but he has accomplished much for God and Australia.
May he rest in peace”.

Henry, Charles, 1826-1869, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1443
  • Person
  • 20 May 1826-11 August 1869

Born: 20 May 1826, Athlone, County Westmeath
Entered: 15 April 1844, Hodder, Stonyhurst, England - Anglia Province (ANG)
Ordained: 1858
Professed: 02 April1864
Died: 11 August 1869, Stonyhurst, Lancashire, England - Anglia Province (ANG)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Entered 28/09/1842 LEFT readmitted 15/04/1844 Hodder
1846-1851 After First Vows he was sent for regency to St Francis Xavier Liverpool for five years.
1851-1852 Studied Philosophy at Stonyhurst
1852-1854 More Regency at Stonyhurst
1854-1858 Studied Theology for three years at St Beuno’s and one at Louvain.
1858-1863 He then spent two years as Minister at Stonyhurst, two years as a Missioner at Prescot and one year at St Wallburgh’s Preston.
1863-1867 He returned to St Wallburgh’s Preston.
1867 Appointed Rector at Stonyhurst, where he died 11 August 1869 aged 43.

Hughes, Joseph, 1843-1878, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1466
  • Person
  • 13 January 1843-02 September 1878

Born: 13 January 1843, County Carlow
Entered: 02 March 1865, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1874, Leuven, Belgium
Professed: 02 February 1878
Died: 02 September 1878, Milltown Park, Dublin

Younger brother of John Hughes- RIP 1888 and William Hughes - RIP 1902

2nd year Novitiate at Amiens France (FRA)
by 1867 at Amiens France (CAMP) studying
by 1872 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1877 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Younger brother of John Hughes- RIP 1888 and William Hughes - RIP 1902
He had made some of his Priestly studies before Entry.

His second year Novitiate was at Amiens, where he also studied Rhetoric..
He studied Theology for three years at Louvain, and was Ordained there 1874.
1876 He was sent to Drongen for Tertianship
1877 He was sent to Limerick Teaching
He was Prefect and Teacher at Tullabeg over different periods.
1878 He arrived in Milltownfor his Annual Retreat, and then for Villa at Killiney. He contracted a fever there, was nursed and died at Milltown 02 September 1878.

Hughes, William, 1841-1902, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1467
  • Person
  • 01 February 1841-02 April 1902

Born: 01 February 1841, Leighlinbridge, County Carlow
Entered: 11 May 1861, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1871
Professed: 02 February 1883
Died: 02 April 1902, St Aloysius, Sevenhill, Adelaide, Australia

He was the in the middle of brothers John Hughes- RIP 1888 and Joseph Hughes - RIP 1878

by 1864 at Roehampton London (ANG) studying
by 1869 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1872 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
Early Australian Missioner 1872

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He came from a family of seven brothers and five sisters, and two of his brothers were Jesuits - He was the in the middle of brothers John Hughes- RIP 1888 and Joseph Hughes - RIP 1878
Early education was at Leighlinbridge. He then went to Maynooth to study Humanities and Philosophy, and then decided to join the Society.

1863-1865 After First Vows he was sent for Regency to Clongowes and then to Limerick.
1865 He was sent to Louvain for Theology
1872 He set out for Melbourne in the company of Christopher Nulty and Michael Watson. There he taught in the Colleges for 31 years. When his health began to fail he was sent to Sevenhill to prepare for death under the care of an old friend Charles Dietel, who was Superior there at that time. His death there was timely, as it saved him from having one of his legs amputated. He died 02 April 1902 Sevenhill
He became a Consultor of the Mission. He also gave very successful Priests and Nuns Retreats. He was thought very learned - “a regular encyclopedia of knowledge” - and a great lover of Community life.
He was very proficient in Latin, Greek, French, German and Italian.
He was a gifted writer and contributed to many Catholic publications. Whilst at Xavier in Kew he wrote several articles for the “Advocate” which was widely read. He also contributed many articles for the “Australian Messenger” under the initials “W.H.”

Note from John McInerney Entry :
He went afterwards to St Patrick’s College, Melbourne, and there he had amongst his teachers Fathers William Kelly, Frank Murphy and William Hughes.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father William Hughes SJ 1841-1902
Fr William Hughes was a native of Carlow. He was born in 1841, and received his early education at Leighlinbridge. Having studied Humanities and Philosophy, he entered the Society in 1861. He taught at Clongowes and Crescent, and finally in the early 1870’s he went to Australia with Frs Watson and Nulty.

He taught in our Colleges for 31 years, was in great demand as a giver of retreats to priests and Nuns. He was very learned “a regular encyclopaedia of knowledge”. Being a facile and gifted writer, he was a regular contributor to the various Catholic publications of Australia.

His health failing, he went to Sevenhill to prepare for death, under the kind care of his old friend Fr Charles Dietel, the Superior of the Residence. A few months later he died peacefully on April 2nd 1902.

◆ The Crescent : Limerick Jesuit Centenary Record 1859-1959

Bonum Certamen ... A Biographical Index of Former Members of the Limerick Jesuit Commnnity

Father William Hughes (1841-1902)

Received his early education at Leighlinbridge and entered Maynooth College where he had finished his course of humanities and philosophy when he applied for admission to the Society in 1861. He made his higher studies in Louvain. Before his ordination, Father Hughes spent three years of his regency at the Crescent, 1865-68. In the early 1870's, he was transferred to the Australian mission where he laboured until his death. He gave good service for many years in the Australian Jesuit colleges where he was widely known as a wise spiritual director. He was also a copious contributor of essay and articles upon religious and historical questions to the Australian Catholic press.

Hurley, Michael, 1923-2011, Jesuit priest and ecumenist

  • IE IJA J/775
  • Person
  • 10 May 1923-15 April 2011

Born: 10 May 1923, Ardmore, County Waterford
Entered: 10 September 1940, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 15 August 1954, Leuven, Belgium
Final Vows: 03 February 1958, Chiessa del Gesù, Rome, Italy
Died: 15 April 2011, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

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

Older brother of Jimmy - RIP 2020

Founder of the Irish School of Ecumenics 1971
Founder of the Columbanus Community of Reconciliation, Derry, 1983

by 1952 at Leuven (BEL M) studying
by 1957 at Rome Italy (ROM) studying
by 1981 at Nairobi Kenya (AOR) Sabbatical

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Hurley, Michael Anthony
by Turlough O'Riordan

Hurley, Michael Anthony (1923–2011), ecumenist and theologian, was born on 10 May 1923 in Ardmore, Co. Waterford, the eldest of four children (two boys and two girls) of Michael Hurley, a small businessman, and his wife Johanna (née Foley), who kept a guest house. He won a scholarship to board at the Cistercian Trappist Mount Melleray Abbey (1935–40), and on 10 September 1940 entered the Jesuit novitiate at Emo Park, Co. Laois, drawn to the order's intellectual reputation. He studied classics at UCD (1942–5), graduating BA, and philosophy at Tullabeg, Co. Offaly (1945–8), before teaching Latin and Irish at Mungret College, Limerick (1948–51). At Mungret, he established a reputation for radical, independent thinking. He set up a study circle that examined Marxist texts, and published an assessment of The Communist manifesto in the Irish Monthly (1948). A brief student hunger strike at the college (in protest at poor food) was blamed on Hurley by his provincial, and when he was observed by Garda special branch entering the communist book shop in Pearse Street, Dublin, in clerical garb, gardaí visited Mungret to notify his superiors.

He studied theology at Louvain (1951–5), and was much influenced by the ecumenist Professor Georges Dejaifve. Interested in workers' councils, Hurley spent summers volunteering with the Young Christian Workers in the Charleroi coal mines in Belgium (1951) and in a steel factory in the south of France (1952). He was ordained at Louvain on 15 August 1954. His postgraduate work at the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome (1956–8) (where his rector was the ecumenical Charles Boyer, SJ) resulted in a doctorate in theology (1961), published as Scriptura sola: Wyclif and his critics (1960), in which Hurley posited a traditionalist view of the teachings and biblical exegesis of the dissident English priest John Wyclif (d. 1384).

Returning to Ireland, Hurley was appointed professor of dogmatic theology to the Jesuit faculty of theology at Milltown Park, Dublin (1958–70). He was instrumental in establishing an annual series of public lectures (1960–81) which anticipated many of the themes addressed by the second Vatican council (1962–5), and propagated its teaching. His lecture on 'The ecumenical movement' (9 March 1960), benefiting from the guidance he received from Raymond Jenkins (1898–1998), later Church of Ireland archdeacon of Dublin (1961–74) (who introduced Hurley to George Tyrrell (qv) and anglican theologians), was published as Towards Christian unity (1961) and praised by Fr Denis Faul (qv). Although Archbishop John Charles McQuaid (qv) of Dublin and Hurley's Jesuit superiors opposed his accepting an invitation to lecture the TCD Student Christian Movement (May 1962), Hurley gave the lecture off campus; it was later published in the Irish Ecclesiastical Record (1962). He also lectured methodist theological students at Edgehill Theological College, Belfast (1963), and addressed lay groups such as Muintir na Tíre and Tuairim at ecumenical forums from the early 1960s. Delivering the annual Aquinas lecture at QUB in March 1964, Hurley suggested the Vatican council pursue church reform to 'restore once again that diversity of rite and usage and human tradition which is the authentic and due manifestation of true Christian unity' (Ir. Times, 9 March 1964). In May 1966 the Irish Times intended to reprint his article on mixed marriages from the Irish Furrow, but this was halted at the last minute by McQuaid. Hurley's April 1968 Milltown lecture addressing original sin suffered a similar fate, and McQuaid sought to expel him from the Dublin archdiocese. Only the intercession of Fr Cecil McGarry (rector of Milltown (1965–8) and Irish provincial (1968–75)) allowed Hurley to remain.

A committed ecumenist, Hurley sought to confront the latent sectarianism found among both Irish catholics and protestants. His engagement with the wider international Christian communion, whose variety within and across denominations fascinated him, was marked by his coverage of the 1963 Paris meeting of the World Council of Churches for the Irish Press, attendance at the general council of the world alliance of presbyterian reformed churches in Frankfurt (1964) and at the World Methodist Council in London (1966), and lecture on the catholic doctrine of baptism to presbyterian students at Assembly's College, Belfast (February 1968). He was a member of the organising committees that established the Glenstal (June 1964) and Greenhills (January 1966) unofficial ecumenical conferences, ensuring that presbyterian and methodist representatives were invited to the former, and edited collected papers from these conferences in Church and eucharist (1966) and Ecumenical studies: baptism and marriage (1968).

Hurley's contacts with methodists led to his appointment (1968–76) to the joint commission between the Roman catholic church and World Methodist Council. He was attracted to the ecumenical nature of the spirituality of John Wesley (qv), and edited Wesley's Letter to a Roman catholic (1968) (originally published in 1749 in Dublin), which required adroit navigation on either side of the denominational divide. Hurley's Theology of ecumenism (1969) concisely summarised the relevant theology, urging participative ecumenism and the ecumenising of clerical theological education, which provoked further opposition from McQuaid. To mark the centenary of the disestablishment of the Church of Ireland, Hurley edited Irish anglicanism 1869–1969 (1970), comprising essays by Augustine Martin (qv) and John Whyte (qv) among others. In its conclusion, Hurley argued that 'Christian disunity is a contradiction of the church's very nature' (p. 211). At its launch, the book was presented to anglican primate George Otto Simms (qv) during an ecumenical service that was broadcast live on RTÉ (15 April 1970). Reviewing in the Furrow (October 1970), Monsignor Tomás Ó Fiaich (qv) commended the volume's 'spirit of mutual respect and genuine reflection'.

In October 1970 Hurley founded the interdenominational Irish School of Ecumenics (ISE). An independent institution, unattached to a theological college or university department, it had patrons from the anglican, catholic, methodist and presbyterian churches in Ireland. Based in Pembroke Park, Dublin, it was named Bea House after the Jesuit cardinal who had piloted Vatican II's decree on ecumenism (1964), and adopted the motto floreat ut pereat (may it flourish in order to perish). The results of the school's consultation and research on mixed marriages (September 1974), addressing Pope Paul VI's motu propiro, Matrimonia mixta (1970), were edited by Hurley as Beyond tolerance: the challenge of mixed marriage (1974). This angered Archbishop Dermot Ryan (qv) of Dublin (1972–84), who complained to Hurley that the ISE 'was a protestant rather than an ecumenical institute' (Hurley (2003), 86). A well-regarded consultation marking the thirtieth anniversary in 1978 of the UN's Universal Declaration of Human Rights indicated the ISE's increasingly expansive and pluralist approach. It promoted ecumenism in pursuit of social justice, human rights and reconciliation, focused on training and education to spur inter-church dialogue, and communicated international ecumenical developments to an often insular Irish ecclesiastical world. In 1980 Hurley resigned as ISE director, primarily to improve the school's relations with the catholic hierarchy.

A sabbatical (1980–81), spent travelling in Africa, the Middle East, China and Europe, led to a profound period of spiritual reflection. Hurley was perturbed at the continued resistance to both practical and theological ecumenism by evangelical protestants and the Roman catholic hierarchy, and at how Orthodox Christianity, which he experienced first hand at Mount Athos, viewed western Christians as heretics; he saw this schism reflected in the concomitant stance of conservative catholic theologians towards reformed Christianity. After visiting a variety of Christian communities, Hurley decided to found an interdenominational religious residential community. Developing the idea with the support of Joseph Dargan, SJ, his Irish provincial, he consulted widely among friends and religious communities of varying denominations, and conceived of a liturgical community of prayer combining facets of a Benedictine monastery and Jesuit house, engaging in apostolic outreach. The Columbanus Community of Reconciliation was inaugurated on 23 November 1983, the feast of its patron saint, as a residential Christian community on the Antrim Road, Belfast, to challenge sectarianism, injustice and violence; Cardinal Tomás Ó Fiaich agreed to be a patron. Hurley led the community until 1991, before withdrawing in 1993 aged 70; he remained a trustee until 2002. Despite deteriorating community relations in Northern Ireland, it made some discernible progress in ecumenical initiatives and dialogue.

Hurley was coordinator for ecumenism with the Irish Jesuit province (1995–2004), and led retreats as director of spiritual exercises (2004–11). His relentless promotion of educational integration and meaningful interfaith dialogue marked the limits of functional ecumenicalism. Anointed the 'father of Irish ecumenism' (Furrow, April 1996) by Seán Mac Réamoinn (qv), Hurley was awarded honorary LLDs by QUB (1993) and TCD (1995), and honoured by a Festschrift, Reconciliation (1993; ed. Oliver Rafferty), emanating from a conference held that year in Belfast. In his memoir Healing and hope (1993), he noted that he would probably have embraced presbyterianism but for his upbringing, and that 'while the change of terminology, and of theology, from unity to reconciliation, is a sign of maturity, resistance to it is also a sign that we are still wandering in the desert' (Hurley (2003), 122). The same memoir lists his extensive bibliography. A selection of his writings and reminiscences, Christian unity (1998), was followed by his editing of a history of the The Irish School of Ecumenics 1970–2007 (2008). At its launch, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin apologised to Hurley for his treatment in the 1970s by the Dublin archdiocese.

Having endured cancer for a number of years, Hurley died on 15 April 2011 at St Vincent's University Hospital, Dublin, after a heart attack. His brother James Hurley, SJ, was principal celebrant at his funeral (19 April) at St Francis Xavier church, Gardiner Street, Dublin; mass was sung by the choir of the anglican St Patrick's cathedral, Dublin. Hurley's sister Mary was, as Mother Imelda, an abbess of the Cistercian St Mary's Abbey, Glencairn, Co. Waterford. The annual Michael Hurley memorial lecture commenced at Milltown in 2012.

National University of Ireland: calendar for the year 1946; Ir. Times, 12 Oct., 7 Nov. 1963; 9 Mar 1964; 11 Mar. 1965; 1 Jan., 16 May, 2 Aug. 1966; 8 July 1972; 2, 9 Sept. 1974; Michael Hurley, 'Northern Ireland: a scandal to theology', occasional paper no. 12, Centre for Theology and Public Issues, University of Edinburgh (1987), 26; id., Christian Unity: an ecumenical second spring? (1998); id., Healing and hope: memories of an Irish ecumenist (2003); Francis Xavier Carty, Hold firm: John Charles McQuaid and the second Vatican council (2007); Ronald A. Wells, Hope and reconciliation in Northern Ireland: the role of faith-based organisations (2010); Patrick Fintan Lyons, 'Healing and hope: remembering Michael Hurley', One in Christ, xlv, no. 2 (2011); Clara Cullen and Margaret Ó hÓgartaigh, His grace is displeased: selected correspondence of John Charles McQuaid (2013); Owen F. Cummings, 'Ecumenical pioneer, Michael Hurley, SJ (1923–2011)' in One body in Christ: ecumenical snapshots (2015), 40–52

◆ Jesuits in Ireland : https://www.jesuit.ie/news/michael-hurley-sj-rip/

Michael Hurley SJ, RIP
Well-known ecumenist and co-founder of the Irish School of Ecumenics (ISE), Michael Hurley SJ, died this morning, Friday 15 April, at 7am in St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin. He was 87
years old.
He was Director of the ISE from 1970 until 1980. In 1981, whilst on retreat in India, he had the vision of an ecumenical community of Catholics and Protestants living together somewhere in Northern Ireland. He made that vision a reality in 1983 when he co-founded the Columbanus Community of Reconciliation on the Antrim Rd, North Belfast, in 1983. He lived and worked there for ten years.
He has written extensively on the subject of ecumenism and his publications include Towards Christian Unity (CTS1961), Church and Eucharist (Ed., Gill 1966), Reconciliation in Religion and Society (Ed., Institute of Irish Studies, Belfast 1994), Healing and Hope: Memories of an Irish Ecumenist ( Columba, 2003) and Christian Unity: An Ecumenical Second Spring? (Veritas) – the fruit of some forty years of ecumenical experience in both theory and practice. The book carries prefaces from the leaders of the four main Churches in Ireland who pay generous tribute to the author’s work- work which was once seen as quite controversial.
Michael Hurley was born in Ardmore, Co.Waterford and joined the Jesuits on 10 September, 1940. He was educated in University College Dublin and Eegenhoven-Louvain, before completing his doctorate in theology in the Gregorian University in Rome. He received an honorary doctorate (LLD) from Queen’s University Belfast in 1993, and from Trinity College Dublin in 1995.
He lived with the Jesuit community in Milltown Park from 1993 until the present. He was Province Co- ordinator for Ecumenism from 1995-2004 and writer and Director of the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius from 2004 to 2011.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

https://www.jesuit.ie/who-are-the-jesuits/inspirational-jesuits/michael-hurley/

Michael Hurley
Referred to as the ‘father of Irish ecumenism’, Michael Hurley devoted his life to promoting unity in the midst of conflict and division.
Michael Hurley was born in Ardmore, Waterford, in 1923. After having attended school at Mount Melleray he entered the Jesuit noviciate, at the age of seventeen. As part of his studies to become a Jesuit, Fr Hurley was educated in University College Dublin and the Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium, before completing his doctorate in theology in the Gregorian University in Rome. He was ordained a priest in 1954 and, having finished his studies, began teaching at Mungret College near Limerick in 1958.
Throughout his time as a Jesuit, Fr Hurley was a strong advocate for ecumenism, that striving for unity between the various Christian churches which was given real impetus at the Second Vatican Council between 1962-1965. Fr Hurley was a true pioneer in giving practical expression to the revised ecclesiology of the Council. He left his teaching role at Mungret in 1970 and then co-founded the Irish School of Ecumenics at Milltown Park.
The school dealt with relations in Northern Ireland at a time when the Troubles were very much a reality of people’s everyday lives. However, the then Archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid, did not approve of Fr Hurley’s work with the school, and a ban was issued on him speaking within the archdiocese on ecumenical matters. This was only lifted through the intervention of the Jesuit provincial in Ireland. Archbishop McQuaid died in 1973, but his successor continued his opposition against the school, and in 1980 Fr Hurley felt it necessary to step down as director.
This was by no means the end of Fr Hurley’s active role in ecumenism in Ireland, however. In 1983 he co-founded the inter-church Columbanus Community of Reconciliation in Belfast, as a place where Catholics and Protestants could live together. He himself lived and worked there for ten years before moving to the Jesuit community in Milltown Park in 1993. That same year he received an honorary doctorate from Queen’s University Belfast, and Trinity College awarded him one two years later.
From 1995 to 2004 Hurley was the Province Co-ordinator for Ecumenism, and the Director of the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius from 2004 until his death in 2011, at the age of eighty-seven. In 2008, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin apologised to Hurley for how he had been treated in the past, and acknowledged the greatly important work he had done.

https://www.jesuit.ie/news/ecumenist-and-friend-to-many/

Many tributes have been paid to Fr Michael Hurley SJ, who died on Friday 15 April at the age of 87. Hundreds attended his requiem mass in Gardiner St. on Tuesday 19 April. Considered by many to be ‘the father of Irish ecumenism’, he was co-founder of the Irish School of Ecumenics in 1970 and remained Director there for ten years. In 1981, whilst on retreat in India, he had the vision of an ecumenical community of Catholics and Protestants living together somewhere in Northern Ireland. On his return in 1983 he co-founded the Columbanus Community of Reconciliation on the Antrim Rd, Belfast. He lived and worked there also for ten years, always giving a sincere and warm welcome to visitors north and south. Read below for an appreciation by Donal Neary SJ, Parish Priest of Gardiner St.
MICHAEL HURLEY SJ
Michael had a huge capacity for friendship. He often remembered all sorts of details, great and small, about novices he had befriended. The renewed community life of the post-Vatican II years gave many Jesuits a new and more personal form of community life. This spoke to Michael, who was an active initiator of the first small community in Milltown Park, and this was the beginning of many sustained links with younger Jesuits, who, he said, kept him young.
He struggled with the loneliness of academic life, working hard not to let it limit his care and interest in his fellow Jesuits and many friends. Today we might call him an iconic figure – he was this in worldwide ecumenical circles, and a larger-than-life member of the Irish Jesuits. His sense of humour, as well as skilled diplomacy, got him through many potential crises. He invited us to many hilarious and kindly gatherings in Milltown Park, and even engaged us in humorous yet deeply spiritual plans for his funeral. A new book, a milestone birthday, a jubilee of priesthood or Jesuit life, to which people of many churches and ways of life would find their way — all of these could be occasions for Michael to gather his friends around him.
He allowed us share some of the frustrations of illness over the last years, whether in conversation over a good lunch or on the telephone. Jesuit students remember the famous occasion when a lecture he was due to give was cancelled as it was considered potentially offensive by certain Church leaders. We younger students looked on him favourably as one of the ‘rebels’ after Vatican II, always pushing the boat out a bit into deeper ecumenical and theological seas.
We might recall that Michael never gave up – on life which he faced always courageously, on his friends whom he thought so highly of even when we did not deserve it, on the church’s movement into ecumenism which he pushed on with patience and zest, and on God whom he heartily believed never gave up on him.
Donal Neary SJ

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 145 : Summer 2011

Obituary

Fr Michael Hurley (1923-2011)

10th May 1923: Born in Ardmore, Co. Waterford
Early education: National School; Mount Melleray Seminary, Cappoquinn
10th September 1940: Entered the Society at Emo
11th September 1942: First vows at Emo
1942 - 1945: Rathfarnham: studied Arts at UCD
1945 - 1948: Tullabeg - studied philosophy
1948 - 1951: Mungret College - regency.
1951 - 1955: Theology at St Albert College, Eegenhoven, Louvain
15 August 1954: Ordained at Eegenhoven, Louvain
1955 - 1956: Tertianship in Rathfarnham
1956 - 1958: Gregorian, Rome: biennium in dogmatic theology
1958 - 1970: Milltown Park: Professor of Dogma
3rd February 1958: Final Vows at the Gesu, Rome
1970 - 1980: Director of Irish School of Ecumenics
1980 - 1981: Sabbatical
1981 - 1983: Special project: ecumenical community in N Ireland
1983 - 1993: Milltown Park: fouding Columbanus House, Belfast Province Coordinator of ecumenism
1993 - 2011: Milltown Park: writer, director of Spiritual Exercises
1995 - 2004: Coordinator of ecumenism
2004 - 2011: Writer, director of Spiritual Exercises
15th April 2011: Died at Cherryfield

Fr Hurley had a successful hip replacement in March 2011. After some time he moved to Cherryfield Lodge for 2 weeks recuperation, and he was expected back to Milltown Park shortly. He was unwell for a few days and died suddenly on the morning of 15th April 2011. May he rest in the peace of Christ.

Obituary from several hands
In the Milltown Park Community, where Michael Hurley had recently celebrated fifty years of residence (though ten of them were spent in Belfast), his death leaves a more than usually obvious hole. He was a strong presence, a genius at finding reasons to celebrate, and also with a sharp sense of how things could be improved, not merely in the Church and the Society, but also in the community. He had a huge capacity for friendship, and remembered all sorts of important and relevant things about his friends. The renewed community life of the post-Vatican II years gave many Jesuíts a new and more personal form of community life. Michael was an active initiator of the first small community in Milltown Park, and this was the beginning of many sustained links with younger Jesuits who, he said, kept him young.

He struggled with the loneliness of academic life, never allowing it to limit his care and interest in his fellow Jesuits and many friends, Today we might call him an iconic figure – he was this in worldwide ecumenical circles, and a larger-than-life member of the Irish Jesuits.

Frances Makower's collection of Jesuits telling their faith stories, Call and Response, contains a chapter by Michael, which he called “Triple Vocation" - as an ecumenist, a Jesuit and a Catholic: a Catholic since he was born, a Jesuit since his late teens and an ecumenist since his late thirties. His account relates his rootedness in the faith of his family community in Ardmore, his Jesuit formation and his theological studies in Louvain. He reflects. “For me the Spirit of God lives in all three and is never grieved in all three at the same time. Despite the sin and unbelief in any one or two of them, the Spirit subsists in the others(s) giving me the energy and consolation to persevere”.

Michael was a prophet: not a prophet in the way that popular culture uses the term, but in the biblical sense of someone who is called and sent by God to speak out to the community about its restricted thinking and behaviour, and to call the community to hear anew the voice of the Lord.

In his account of his life and spiritual journey, Michael relates how somewhat to his surprise, in 1959 and then into the 1960s, he found himself moving into and developing both ecumenical theology and personal relationships with the churches, leading of course to the commemoration of the disestablishment of the Church of Ireland in 1969 for which he edited a volume of essays, Irish Anglicanism. He founded the Irish School of Ecumenics (ISE) in 1970, and published his classic little book The Theology of Ecumenism. In 1981, while on a thirty-day retreat in India as part of a sabbatical, he felt called to found an ecumenical community in Belfast and so the Columbanus Community of Reconciliation was born. He wrote extensively on the subject of ecumenism, and his publications include Towards Christian Unity (1961), Church and Eucharist (1966), Reconciliation in Religion and Society (1994), Healing and Hope: Memories of an Irish Ecumenist (2003) and Christian Unity: an ecumenical Second Spring? (2004) - the fruit of some forty years of ecumenical experience in both theory and practice. The book carries prefaces from the leaders of the four main Churches in Ireland who pay generous tribute to the author's work, work which was once seen as quite controversial.

Michael's early ecumenical initiatives were “a source of anguish” to John Charles McQuaid, then Archbishop of Dublin, who decided to impose an absolute prohibition on Michael “speaking within my sphere of jurisdiction”. It was only the able and passionate defence of Michael's cause by Provincial Cecil McGarry that persuaded John Charles to relent. Difficulties continued with his successor, Dermot Ryan. Michael later recalled: “Archbishop Ryan became somewhat unhappy with the Irish School of Ecumenics, and with myself in particular, because, although I'm called after the archangel, I'm no angel in my behaviour. So, towards the end of the ISE's first decade, it seemed best to remove myself from the scene. After that the school's relationship with the Catholic archdiocese did improve”. Cardinal Connell later became the first Catholic archbishop of Dublin to be a formal patron of the school.

In 2008 Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, who uncovered the archival material relating to Fr Hurley, apologised to him “for some misunderstandings on the part of my predecessors”. In a good-natured exchange at Milltown, Michael spoke of his "great sense of relief and joy and gratitude" as he listened to Dr Martin's magnanimous apology. It was a mark of Michael's own style in the community that he was quick to apologise if he sensed a cloud over some relationship.

What was central to Michael, as to other prophets, was his deep faith, his unwavering hope and his powerful love. His faith, his hope and his love shine through the risks he took in his many ventures, especially the big ones, the Irish School of Ecumenics, the Columbanus Community and the consultations. Even when he was under pressure from ecclesiastical authorities - and like the prophets, he endured much - he continued to stay grounded in his faith, his hope and his love.

He wasn't a personal empire-builder - witness the ISE's brilliant motto Floreat ut pereat. The honours he received, honorary doctorates from Queen's and Dublin universities, the Coventry Cross of Nails, and the Festschrift, were honours for his work, for what he had been sent to preach and to bear witness. He changed us, not merely through the institutional legacy of the ISE, but through our emotional and intellectual response to other Christian churches, and through our keener grasp of the ministry of reconciliation, a strong theme in the Society ever since the time of Ignatius and Peter Faber.

Michael was energetic for God's work. When that energy began to fade in his latter years, he was deeply frustrated. The perseverance and resilience that he talks about in his memoir became a frustration, both for him and his community. Prophets find old age and the limitations of health difficult. But he was never bitter. He never gave up - on life, which he always faced courageously, on his friends who he thought so highly of even when they felt undeserving of it; on the church's movement into ecumenism, which he pushed on with patience and zest; and on God who he believed never gave up on him.

Homily at Michael Hurley's Funeral : 19th April 2011 - David Coghlan
This homily has been in incubation for a long time. Frances Makower's collection of Jesuits telling their faith stories, Call and Response, contains a chapter by Michael, from which I'll draw. Michael gave me a copy of that book for Christmas, and on the flyleaf he wrote, “If you are going to preach at my funeral, you'd better have a copy of the authorised version of my story”. The date of that inscription reads Christmas 1994! There was hardly an occasion when we were together since that he didn't ask me if I had written his funeral sermon yet! Michael asked that his funeral be joyful. He looked forward to being in attendance and to enjoying a celebration of his life with his Jesuit brothers, his family, and his friends in all the Churches. My task this morning is not to talk about Michael, though I will do that a lot, but to talk aut God primarily, and about God as he worked in Michael's life.

Michael called his chapter in the Call and Response book, “Triple Vocation” where he narrated his vocation as an ecumenist, a Jesuit and a Catholic: a Catholic since he was born, a Jesuit since his late teens and an ecumenist since his late thirties. His account relates his rootedness in the faith of his family community in Ardmore, his Jesuit formation and his theological studies in Louvain. He reflects. “For me the Spirit of God lives in all three and is never grieved in all three at the same time. Despe the sin and unbelief in any one or two of them, the Spirit subsists in the others(s) giving me the energy and consolation to persevere” (p. 135).

I lived in community with Michael in the early 1970s, in a small community which he referred to as “Finkewalde”, and another Christmas present from Michael that I have since 1973 is a copy of Bonhoeffer's, Life Together, a little book that we often talked about and which was influential in forming Michael's spirituality. The insight I received at that time, and which has not been superseded in the 40 years since, is that Michael was a prophet, not a prophet in the way that popular culture uses the term but in the biblical sense of someone who is called and sent by God to speak out to the community about its restricted thinking and behaviour and to call the community to hear anew the voice of the Lord. Hence the reading from Jeremiah to which we have just listened. In his account of his life and spiritual journey in Call and Response, Michael relates, how somewhat to his surprise, in 1959 and then into the 1960s, he found himself moving into and developing both ecumenical theology and personal relationships with the churches, leading of course to the commemoration of the disestablishment of the Church of Ireland in 1969 for which he edited a volume of essays, Irish Anglicanism, the founding of the School of Ecumenics in 1970 and his classic little book The Theology of Ecumenism. In 1981, while on a thirty day retreat in India as part of a sabbatical, he felt called to found an ecumenical community in Belfast and so the Columbanus Community of Reconciliation was born. The gospel story to which we have listened was a treasured text for Michael as it signified for him that he understood how the risen Jesus walked with him, supported him and constantly taught him and led him.

Like prophets, what was central to Michael was his deep faith, his unwavering hope and his powerful love. Whatever we want to say about Michael and there are many things we can say, his faith, his hope and his love shine through the risks he took in his many ventures, especially the big ones, The Irish School of Ecumenics and the Columbanus Community and the consultations. Even when he was under pressure from ecclesiastical authorities, and like the prophets, he endured much, he continued to stay grounded in his faith, his hope and his love. He wasn't a personal empire builder; “Floreat ut pereat” bears witness to that. The honours he received, honorary doctorates from Queen's and Dublin universities and the Coventry Cross of Nails, and the feschrift were honours for his work, for what he had been sent to preach and to bear witness. In this regard he notes in his chapter, referring to the Spiritual Exercises, “Must I not desire and choose, must I not prefer failure with Christ on the cross rather than success, provided equal or greater praise and service be given to the Divine Majesty?” (p.146)

Michael was energetic for God's work and when that energy began to fade in his latter years, he was deeply frustrated. The perseverance and resilience that he talks about in his chapter became a frustration, both for him and his community, Prophets find old age and the limitations of health difficult. But he was never bitter. When I visited him in Mt. Carmel a couple of weeks ago we spent time talking about the card he had propped up on the windowsill where he could see it from his bed. It was a triptych of religious scenes from old masters, including Fra Angelico's Annunciation.

So then, what about us? There is a sense in which we are all called to be prophets. There is an invitation to hear God's voice, to respond to how God invites us, each in our own personal story and concrete circumstances to confront the challenges in our world that are destructive of faith, of hope, of love, of human dignity, of justice, of peace, of reconciliation and so on,

I suggest that we consider that Michael's life is a life about God - about how God graced a man to be his prophet, to speak to our age about the scandal of Christian disunity not in condemnation, but as a call to a deeper shared faith, hope and love. Jesuits define themselves as sinners, yet called to be companions of Christ sent to the inculturated proclamation of the gospel and dialogue with other religious traditions as integral dimensions of evangelization. Michael devoted his Jesuit life to living this. I am confident, rather than closing this few words with a prayer for him, Michael would approve of me closing with Christ's and his prayer: “That all may be one”.

Call and Response: Jesuit Journeys in Faith. Frances Makower (ed.) Hodder & Stoughton; London, 1994

Jones, Daniel, 1816-1869, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/454
  • Person
  • 01 February 1816-02 June 1869

Born: 01 February 1816, Banada Abbey, County Sligo
Entered: 15 May 1844, Hodder, Stonyhurst, England - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 1852, St Beuno's, Wales
Final vows: 02 February 1860
Died: 02 June 1869, Milltown Park, Dublin

Older brother of James - RIP 1893; Cousin of Nicholas Gannon - RIP 1882

First Irish Province Novice Master 1860-1864

by 1847 in Clongowes
by 1851 at Laval (FRA) studying Theology
by 1854 Teaching at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG)
by1859 at St Eusebio, Rome Italy (ROM) making Tertianship
by 1860 Mag Nov at Milltown

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Son of Daniel and Maria née MacDonnell (daughter of Miles of Carnacon, Co Mayo). Brother of James RIP 1893 Loyola, Guipúzkoa, Spain

Early education and Prior Park, Bath, then Louvain and Trinity College Dublin. On his father’s death he succeeded to the family estate, became a magistrate and deputy-lieutenant for Sligo, and was once put in nomination to represent the County in Parliament. Growing weary of the world, he determined to consecrate himself to God in the Society of Jesus, joining the Irish Vice-Province, and his Noviceship was at Hodder, 15 May 1844, aged 28.

1846-1847 After First Vows he taught Grammar at Clongowes.
1847-1851 He then studied Philosophy and some Theology at Laval, and the finished his Theology at St Beuno’s, being Ordained there.
1852 Appointed Socius to the Novice Master at Hodder, while completing his Tertianship at the same time.
1854-1857 Professor of Moral Theology at St Beuno’s, and then taught the short course in Hebrew, whilst acting as Spiritual Father.
1857-1858 Sent to Gardiner St as a Missioner, but soon left for Rome, having got permission to make a second Tertianship, since the first was too much interrupted at Hodder.
1859 Sent to Milltown as Minister
1860-1864 Having taken Final Vows, he was appointed Rector of Milltown and the first HIB Master of Novices, the Vice-Province having been raised to a full Province in 1860.
1864 He was succeeded by Joseph Lentaigne, so he became Spiritual Father at Milltown, and Director of the Spiritual Exerecises to externs, whilst at the same time being Socius to the Provincial.
1869 He died a holy death at Milltown 02 June 1869 Milltown aged 53. A full account of his sickness and death appeared in “Letters & Notices” Vol vi, pp 172 seq :
“Father Jones was a profound Theologian, and deeply versed in Canon Law, and was consulted with very great confidence by many persons far and near. is varied talents were enhanced by a singular humility, a most amiable disposition and a childlike simplicity, and he could never be brought to look upon himself as fit for any post of honour or responsibility. Death alone had anticipated his knowledge of the fact that he had been appointed Provincial”.

He was thrice elected Procurator to represent the Irish Province in Rome : 1860, 1863 and 1868.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Daniel Jones 1816-1869
Fr Daniel Jones was born at Benada Abeey County Sligo on February 1st 1916. He made his classical and higher studies at Prior Park, the University of Louvain and Trinity College Dublin. On the death of his father he succeeded to the family estate, and became a magistrate and deputy-lieutenant for Sligo. Growing weary of the world, he entered the Society at Hodder in 1844 for the Irish Province.

In 1850 he was made Socius to the Master of Novices at Hodder, while doing his tertianship at the same time. In 1857-1858 he was a Missioner at Gardiner Street, but soon left for Rome, having obtained leave to make a second tertianship, due to the interruptions of the first one. He was then appointed first Rector of Milltown Park and Master of Novices.

In 1864 he was succeeded as Rector by Fr Lentaigne, he himself becoming Spiritual Father and Director of retreats. Three times successively he was elected Procurator to represent the Irish Province in Rome. He was a holy man, and also the author that handy little booklet on the Morning Oblation. He was so humble in himself that he never considered himself fit for any post of responsibility. Death alone anticipated his knowledge of the fact that he had been appointed Provincial.

He died a holy death at Milltown Park, June 2nd 1869.

Joyce, James, 1832-1880, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1489
  • Person
  • 26 July 1832-11 September 1880

Born: 26 July 1832, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 02 December 1856, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Ordained: 1868
Professed: 15 August 1874
Died: 11 September 1880, St Patrick’s College, Melbourne, Australia - Romanae province (ROM)

by 1859 in Roman College, Italy (ROM) studying Philosophy
by 1861 at Namur Belgium (BELG) studying Philosophy
by 1866 at Loyola College, Salamanca Spain (CAST) studying Theology 1
by 1869 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
by 1871 at Rome Italy - Tusculanus (ROM) teaching
by 1872 at St Joseph, Tiruchirappalli, Negapatanense India (TOLO)

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education was at Clongowes.

After First Vows he remained in Rome for Philosophy.
He was then sent for Regency Teaching Mathematics at Clongowes.
He was then sent to Salamanca for Theology, was Ordained and went to Louvain for his 4th year Theology.
1870 he went to India, where he spent nine years teaching at Trichonopoly (Tiruchirappalli) and as Chaplain to the British Forces there, and working with indigenous people.
1879 A large tumour appeared on the left side of his face. His Superiors wanted him to return to Ireland, but the doctors thought he needed a warmer climate. So, he went to Melbourne, arriving there November 1879. he received a warm welcome at St Patrick’s College there, and the most eminent surgeon there was called to attend to him. The diagnosis was that he had a cancer which would result in his death in about eight months. An operation granted him some relief, but by September of 1880 he was clearly close to death. The Rector Christopher Nulty was called to his bed at 12.45 am, just in time to give him the last rites.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
James Joyce entered the Society 26 July 1856, and undertook novitiate and early studies in Rome, followed by regency at Clongowes, and theology in Salamanca and Louvain. In 1870 he sailed for India where he was head of the college in Trichinopoly and chaplain to the British Army. In 1879 a large tumor appeared on the side of his head and superiors wanted him to return to Ireland. Doctors thought a warmer climate would be better so he was sent to Melbourne, living at St Patrick's College. The cancer soon killed him.

Kane, William V, 1856-1945, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/52
  • Person
  • 11 January 1856-19 July 1945

Born: 11 January 1856, Dublin
Entered: 06 October 1891, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 1898, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 25 March 1909, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 19 July 1945, Mungret College, County Limerick

Youngest brother of Robert I - RIP 1929 and T Patrick - RIP 1918
Cousin of Joseph McDonnell - RIP 1928

by 1894 at Enghien Belgium (CAMP) studying
by 1895 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying
by 1908 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship
by 1919 at LLandrindod, Wales (ANG) working

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Youngest brother of Robert I - RIP 1929 and T Patrick - RIP 1918
Note from Robert I Kane Entry :
“Father Robert Kane SJ, well known as ‘the Blind Orator’ died at Milltown Park.... The son of William J Kane of Dublin and his wife Mary MacDonnell of Saggart ... he was a nephew of Sir Robert Kane, distinguished Irish scientist, author of “The Industrial Resources of Ireland”, and first cousin to the famous Admiral Henry Kane.

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 20th Year No 4 1945

Obituary :

Fr. William Kane (1856-1891-1945)

On July 19th, 1945, at Mungret College, Limerick, Fr. William Kane peacefully died in the 90th year of his age and the 54th year of his religious life.
Fr. William Kane was born in Dublin on January 11th, 1850. He was a nephew of the celebrated scientist Sir Robert Kane, F.R.S., and first cousin of Rear-Admiral Sir Henry Kane, world-famous as commander of H.M.S. "Calliope," which by his skill he saved from destruction in a tornado that swept over Apia Harbour, Samoa, on March 17th, 1889. Having completed his secondary education at Stonyhurst College and at the Oratory School, Birmingham, then under the direction of Newman, he studied law at Trinity College, Dublin, taking out his degrees of B.A, and LL.D. He was called to the Irish Bar in 1879. In 1888 he accompanied Sir James Marshall to the Niger Territories as a Junior Judge, and subsequently succeeded Sir James as Chief Justice. He resigned this post in 1889; and on his return to Europe, was called to the English Bar. Two years later he joined the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus, of which two of his brothers, Frs. Robert and Patrick Kane were already members. He studied Philosophy at Jersey and Theology at Milltown Park, Dublin. He was ordained priest in 1898, and made his solemn profession in 1909.
Having spent two years at Milltown Park as Professor of the Short Course of Theology, Fr. Kane joined the staff of Mungret College in 1901. With the exception of his year of tertianship at Tronchiennes, another year as Professor of Philosophy at Milltown Park, and a short period of parochial duty at Llandrindod Wells after the death of his brother Fr. Patrick, Fr. Kane was a member of the Mungret community until his death last July. He taught in the secondary school and in the classes preparing for the Arts and B.A. degree examinations of the Royal University. He was Editor of the Mungret Annual for several years. But the greater part of his life in Mungret was devoted to the intellectual and professional training of the Apostolic students as Professor of Philosophy. Advancing age obliged him at length to retire from active life, but to the end he was an assiduous reader, and retained his faculties unimpaired to within a day or two of his death.
Fr. Kane's acute and vigorous mind embraced a variety of recondite branches of learning-Philosophy, Theology, Physics, Astronomy, Botany, higher Mathematics. Anything ke knew, he had thoroughly mastered ; and his memory, even in extreme old age, was amazingly fresh and accurate. Ever eager to impart the rich stores of his knowledge, he was prepared at a moment's notice either to range at large over wide fields of knowledge or to discuss some abstruse problem in minute detail. A year or two before his death I was taking a stroll with him on the Philosophers' Walk in Mungret. It was the month of May, and the Philosophers were seated here and there under the trees preparing for the oncoming examinations. Two of them approached us and said to Fr. Kane: "Father, we have a difficulty which we would like you to solve for us"; and they stated it. Fr. Kane replied at once “Schiffini deals with that point”, and then and there cleared up the whole matter in a few words. It struck me at the time that if he had received a day's notice in which to consult his authorities, he could not have given a more complete and satisfactory answer.
Yet while his learned ‘sock’ was ever on, Fr. Kane's social gifts made him an excellent community man. He had a large fund of good stories and amusing anecdotes, and was always ready to cap a witticism with one better. He took part in concerts and entertainments, singing with great go, and biretta pertly cocked on the side of his head, a Latin version of "Father OʻFlynn." He was a keen cricketer, fielding brilliantly at "point" with quick eye and sure hand. He took a prominent part in the activities of a villa, especially in mountaineering. I have often heard him say that he had climbed to the summit of Carrantuohill on four different occasions. Few, I think, have made the ascent so often.
Not the least pleasing features of Fr. Kane's character were his harmless drolleries. Lacking to some degree in a sense of humour, he would take almost any statement literally, a fact wbich laid him open to much "leg-pulling.” He had made a careful study of the topography and antiquities of Limerick, and misstatements, usually deliberate, I fear, regarding the streets and bridges of the city, invariably elicited from him a vigorous and uncompromising correction. On such occasions you took your life in your hands, for when the interests of truth were at stake, Fr. Kane gave no quarter. His previous legal training manifested itself in the cross-questioning to which he subjected you on apparently unimportant details connected with some incident you were relating. Or again, if you proposed some problem calling for lengthy explanation, you might expect to be served with sheets-usually the backs of envelopes-filled with facts, references, charts, etc., more or less undecipherable.
But these foibles of the “old Judge”, as we loved to call him, were but the surface of things. Beneath was the man of high intelligence, wide and deep culture, a gentleman in the full meaning of Newman's analysis of that term, a religious in accordance with the Institute of the Society. Of the virtues with which he was adorned I shall mention but one, the greatest of all, namely his charity. Fr. Kane was a man of strong character and convictions ; yet though I have lived with him for over twenty years, I cannot recall having ever heard him say an unkind word of anyone, or speak with disparagement either of his religious brethren, or of the general body of the clergy or laity, or of men in public life. Eternal rest and light to his soul; and may God continue to bless our Province with men endowed with the eminent talents and solid piety of Fr. William Kane.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father William Kane 1856-1945
Fr William Kane, the third of the famous Jesuit trio of the Kanes, was commonly known as “The Judge” for the fact that he had been a judge in Nigeria before entering the Society.

Born in Dublin on January 11th 1856, he received his early education at Stonyhurst and The Oratory Birmingham. At rthe suggestion of Newman, he studied Law at Trinity College Dublin, taking his BA and LLD degrees. He was called to the Irish Bar in1879, and ten years later to the English Bar. Meanwhile he held the post of Chief Justice iun Lagos Nigeria. In 1891 he became a Jesuit.

He professed the short course at Milltown for two years, and then in 1901 he went to Mungret, where he spent the remainder of his life. He was so long there that he became a symbol of the place, being especially dear to generations of Apostolics to whom he professed philosophy for so long.

He was a man of deep, one might almost say rigid religious conviction, a scholar and a gentleman, in the full meaning of Newman’s definition of that term. He was never known to criticise anybody publicly though he could inveigh with vehemence what he thought was improper or incorrect.

As Spiritual Father his Triduum to the scholastics at Christmas was always on the Three Wise Men, and especially on the mysterious star. Indeed, more often than not, like the Wise Men, he used lose the guiding star of his discourse.

Active up to the last two years of his life, he passed on to his reward on July 19th 1945, after a strenuous life of faithful service.

Fr Kane’s Memento for the Living was always made at length and aloud, and included even those in high places with whom he disagreed in politics. It is hoped that his many pupils all over the world will remember him in their Memento for the Dead.

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1926

Mungret Jubilee

Father William V Kane SJ

It is twenty-five years since Father William Kane was placed on the staff of Mungret College, and since then his connection with the School has been practically continuous. It would be very ungracious - to say the least.. to let such an anniversary pass without some acknowledgment.

Fr Kane has given to Mungret the service of a quarter of a century. He has expended generously, without counting the cost, his talent and energy; he has laboured long and unselfishly in a field where the sower does not. always-nor often-see his harvest. For some years past he has not been teaching the Intermediate classes, and thus has not been in direct contact with the Lay School. He no longer plays the games - “old boys” wlio are not yet too venerable will remember how steadily he batted in Community matches and whát a dangerous man he was at point - but he has still the deepest interest in all that concerns the Lay School.

But his principal work has been done in the Apostolic School. For over fifteen years as the chief teacher of Philosophy, he has been the constant and principal influence in the intellectual and professional training of the Apostolics; and scarcely less considerable has been the influence he has exerted by his activity and interest in the debates and academies.

The Philosophers have been not merely his pupils; they have also been his friends. They write to him from all parts of the world, from All Hallows, Dalgan, Genoa, Rome - if they are at their studies : from America, South Africa, Australia, India, China, where they are at work on the mission. It is scarcely an injustice to anyone to say that for the great majority of the Apostolics who have passed through Mungret since 1900, Fr Kane is the figure that first springs to their mind at the mention of their “Alma Mater”. He is the one figure, too, that they have been certain to find before them when they came back on a visit. Rectors and Moderators have come and gone, but Fr Kane was permanent.

His work for the “Mungret Annual” can not be left unmentioned. He has been connected with it as Editor or Manager for nearly twenty years. What it has cost him in time and worry and labour, only those can guess who have some experience of such work.

The service which Fr Kane has given for 25 years to Mungret is not the service which men usually notice and reward; but there is One Who seeth in secret and will repay. And in the meantime, the “Mungret Annual”, which owes so much to him, speaking for the authorities of the College and expressing the sentiments of his many Mungret pupils and friends, in Ireland and in other countries, wishes to make here a simple acknowledgineot of esteem for his character and of gratitude for his services. May he be long spared to give himself to God's work

◆ The Mungret Annual, 1946

Obituary

Father William V Kane SJ

The death of Father William Kane, I which took place on July 19th, 1945, has broken a golden link with Mungret's glorious past, and taken from amongst us a saintly priest whose personality and influence are closely entwined with generations of Mungret's alumni, priests and laymen, both at home and in distant lands.

Father William Kane was born in Dublin on January 11th, 1856. He was a nephew of the celebrated scientist, Sir Robert Kane, FRS, and first cousin of Rear Admiral Sir Henry Kane, world-famous as commander of HMS “Calliope”, which, by his skill he saved from destruction in a tornado that swept over Apia Harbour, Samoa, on March 17th, 1889. Having completed his secondary education at Stonyhurst College and at the Oratory School, Birmingham, then under the direction of Newman, he studied law at Trinity College, Dublin, taking out his degrees of BA, and LLD. He was called to the Irish Bar in 1879. In 1888 he accompanied Sir James Marshall to the Niger Territories as a Junior Judge, and subsequently succeeded Sir James as Chief Justice. He resigned this post in 1889; and on his return to Europe, was called to the English Bar. Two years later he joined the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus, of which two of his brothers, Fathers Robert and Patrick Kane were already members. He studied Philosophy at Jersey and Theology at Milltown Park, Dublin. He was ordained priest in 1898, and made his solemn profession in 1909.

Having spent two years at Milltown Park as Professor of Theology, Father Kane joined the staff of Mungret College in 1901. With the exception of his year of tertianship at Tronchiennes, another year as Professor of Philosophy at Milltown Park, and a short period of parochial duty at Llandrindod Wells after the death of his brother, Father Patrick, Father Kane was a member of the Mungret community until his death last July. He taught in the secondary school and in the classes preparing for the Arts and BA degree examinations of the Royal University, and was Editor of the “Mungret Annual” for several years.

But the greater part of Father Kane's life in Mungret was devoted as Professor of Philosophy to the intellectual and professional training of the students of the Apostolic School. A man of keen and subtle intelligence, and profoundly versed in many recondite branches of knowledge - Theology, Mathematics, Chemistry and Physics - he was fully competent to deal with the great problems of Metaphysics, and to appreciate their bearing and influence on other sciences. As a result, Father Kane imparted to his pupils a thorough grasp of first principles, as well as habits of clear and orderly thinking. To his training was due, in no small measure, the success achieved in Rome, Louvain and other. centres of theological study, by Mungret men, so many of whom gained the highest academical distinctions, gratefully acknowledging the debt which they owed to Father Kane.

While devoted to Philosophy and Science, Father Kane at the same time took a prominent part in the activities of College life. He attended and spoke at the boys Debating Societies; and at House Concerts he delighted all by the verve and “go” with which he sang a Latin version of “Father O'Flynn”. He was a keen cricketer, fielding brilliantly at “Point” " with quick eye and sure hand. These manifold contacts with the everyday lives of his pupils, his sterling qualities, and his charming if uncompromis ing personal character, endeared him to all, When past Mungret students from distant parts of the globe revisited their Alma Mater, one of their principal objects was to meet Father Kane and talk over old times, with him.

Advancing age at length obliged Father Kane to retire from active life. During the placid evening of his days, spent at Mungret under the devoted care of Nurse Corrigan, the College Matron, Father Kane maintained his interest in the many depart ments of learning of which he had obtained so thorough a mastery. To the end he retained all his faculties unimpaired. Death came peacefully. On a quiet night during the summer holidays he passed to his eternal reward. RIP

JM SJ

Kearney, Barnaby, 1567-1640, Jesuit priest and writer

  • IE IJA J/1497
  • Person
  • 29 September 1567-19 August 1640

Born: 29 September 1567, Cashel, County Tipperary
Entered: 17 October 1589, Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 14 February 1598, Louvain, Belgium
Final Vows: 02 August 1605
Died: 19 August 1640, Cashel, County Tipperary

Alias Bryan O'Carney

Son of Pat Kearney and Elizabeth Connor
Master of Arts and studied Philosophy for 6 years - studying at Douai (1588) - D Phil (1589)
1593 at Antwerp teaching Humanities and Poetry
1597 2 years Theology at Louvain
Taught Rhetoric at Lille for 2 years
1599 At Bourges teaching Greek?
1617 In Ireland
1621 Superior of Jesuits in East Munster.
“chiolericus, has judgements and prudence and a good preacher”.
Nephew was Walter Wale

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
Son of Patrick O’Carney and Elizabeth née Coney. Brother of the Archbishop. Uncle of Walter Wale.
Ent 17 October 1589 Tournai; RIP 20 August 1640 Cashel
Studied in Ireland and then four years Philosophy, graduating MA and D Phil at Douai
Admitted by FLA Provincial Oliver Manraeus 17 October 1589, and Noviceship at Tournai
1591 October 2 Sent to St Omer for studies in Humanities
Regency teaching Greek and Rhetoric at Antwerp and Lille;
1603 Arrived with nephew Walter Wale in Ireland
Both he and his nephew were tried and condemned to death
Writer; a fervid Preacher; gave Missions throughout Ireland
He went in disguise for many years and had many hairbreadth escapes (Foley’s Collectanea)
He is also mentioned in the Report of the Irish Mission SJ made to Fr General Nickell (1641-1650) which are preserved in the English College Rome, and a copy at RHC London.
(cf Hibernia Ignatiana" for letters of Fr Kearney recounting his work in Ireland; Oliver’s “Collectanea”, from Stonyhurst MSS; de Backer’s “Biblioth. des Écrivains SJ” for published sermons)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Patrick and Elizabeth née Convey
Studied in Ireland and under the Jesuits at Douai and graduated MA before, and Later DD Ent 05 October 1589 Tournai
1591-1595 After First Vows he taught Humanities successively at St. Omer, Antwerp and Lille.
1595-1598 He then studied Theology at Louvain and was Ordained there in 1598.
1698-1601 He had requested to be allowed go to the Irish Mission, and while waiting for permission taught at Bruges and Douai
1601-1602 Made Tertianship at Tournai
1603 Late Spring accompanied by his nephew Walter Wale (both sent an account of their journey to the General once arrived) he set out for Ireland where he was sent to Cashel and Kilkenny but his last years were passed in Cashel, where he died 20/08/1640. In the early days of his ministry he was seen in many parts of Munster and also was able with his nephew Walter to reconcile the Earl of Ormonde with the Catholic Church. He died at Cashel 20 August 1640.
He was for many years a Consultor of the Mission.

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Kearney, Barnabas (Ó Cearnaigh, Brian)
by David Murphy

Kearney, Barnabas (Ó Cearnaigh, Brian) (1567–1640), Jesuit priest and writer, was born 29 September 1567 at Cashel, Co. Tipperary, son of Patrick Kearney and Elizabeth Kearney (née Convey). His elder brother was David Kearney (qv), a secular priest who served as archbishop of Cashel (1603–24). Educated locally, Barnabas left Ireland for the Spanish Netherlands and studied philosophy at the Jesuit college in Douai, where he graduated MA (1588), later obtaining a doctorate in philosophy. He entered the Society of Jesus at Tournai on 5 October 1589 and, after his noviciate, taught humanities at Saint-Omer, Antwerp, and Lille (1591–5). Completing his studies at Louvain, he was ordained priest (1596) and then taught at Bruges and Douai. He completed his tertianship at Tournai in 1601–2.

In 1603 he travelled to Ireland with his nephew, Walter Wale, SJ, and for the next thirty years he played a prominent part in the work of the Irish Jesuit mission. Based in Cashel, he enjoyed the assistance of his brother David and, with Walter Wale, worked as one of the pioneers of the counter-reformation in Ireland. Discouraging locals from attending protestant services, in 1605 he avoided being captured by English soldiers when a party of men from the town assisted his escape. A powerful preacher and fluent in Irish, he worked mostly in Munster but also travelled to areas of Leinster, where he worked giving basic religious instruction and also trying to raise the level of the diocesan clergy. In 1610 he was appointed as consultor of the mission and, with Wale, was reputed to have brought Thomas Butler (qv), 10th earl of Ormond, into the catholic faith.

He published collections of his sermons, having manuscripts smuggled abroad to printers on the Continent. His first collection of sermons, Heliotropium, sive conciones tum des festis quam de Dominicis quae in solani totius anni circulo occurrunt, was published in Lyons (1622). In 1623 he sent over a second collection of sermons, ‘Tragici discourses de Passione Domini’, but the Jesuit censors refused to approve it for publication. The manuscript no longer exists and the reason for the censors’ decision remains unclear. Another collection of his sermons was, however, later approved by the censors and published as Heliotropium, sive conciones de mysteris redemptionis humanae quae in Dominica Passione continentur (Paris, 1633). This was dedicated to Archbishop Thomas Walsh (qv), who succeeded Kearney's brother at Cashel. Among the earliest collections of counter-reformation sermons, both of Kearney's publications are now extremely rare, only two copies of his 1622 Heliotropium surviving in Irish libraries (one in TCD, another in the Milltown Institute Library).

In 1629 he was appointed superior of the Cashel ‘residence’ (the territory of the local Jesuit community). His brother had left a small house to the Society and he later supervised the establishment of a small Jesuit community in Cashel. He died 20 August 1640 in Cashel. A collection of his letters is held in the Irish Jesuit Archives, Dublin.

‘Irish ecclesiastical colleges since the reformation: Salamanca, III’, IER, x (Aug. 1874), 527; E. Hogan, SJ, Ibernia Ignatiana (1880); B. Millett, ‘Irish literature in Latin’, NHI, iii, 579; Francis Finnegan, SJ, ‘A biographical dictionary of the Irish Jesuits in the time of the Society's third Irish mission, 1598–1773’, 142–3 (MS volume in Jesuit archives, Dublin); Charles E. O'Neill, SJ, and Joaquín M. Domínguez, SJ (ed.), Diccionario histórico de la Compañía de Jesús: biográfico-temático (Madrid, 2001), iii, 2182; information from Fr Fergus O'Donoghue, SJ, Jesuit archives, Dublin

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Barnaby O’Kearney 1565-1640
One of our greatest Missioners during the Penal Days was Fr Barnaby O’Kearney. Born in Cashel in 1565, where his brother David was afterwards Archbishop, Barnaby entered the novitiate in 1589, and was a brilliant classical scholar, teaching in Antwerp and Lille.

He came back to Ireland with his nephew Walter Wale SJ in 1603, and there he laboured for 37 years. He worked most of hism time in Munster, based in Cashel. On one mission he terrified 5 men who were leading wicked lives, by his description of hell, so that they mended their ways. In another sermon he converted a Viscount and his three brothers. The restitution he caused to be made for sins of injustices in Munster amounted to thousands.

Naturally he incurred the fierce hatred of the priest-hunters. The story of his escape from almost certain capture read like episodes of life in the Wild West. So great was the improvement in public morality as a result of his work, that the judges of the Assizes declared in open court, that Barnaby O’Kearney and Walter Wale did more to prevent robbery than all the enactments and terrors of the law.

It is truly remarkable that this man, in spite of the hazards and perils of his life, lived to celebrate his jubilee in the Society, and also had time in thew midst of his labours to publish his sermons, one volume of Homilies for Sundays and Feasts and another volume on the Passion of the Lord.

He died an old man of 75 years on August 20th 1640.

◆ The English Jesuits 1550-1650 Thomas M McCoog SJ : Catholic Record Society 1994
With his Jesuit companion Walter Wale, Kearney stayed in London with Henry Garnet during the Winter and Spring of 1602/1603 (AASI 46/23/8 pp 399-400

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
KEARNEY, BARNABY, was born at Cashell in 1565, and was brother to David, Archbishop of Cashell. He was admitted into the Society at Douay in the 24th year of his age. After teaching Rhetoric and the Greek Language at Antwerp and Lisle, he was ordered to the Irish Mission, where he arrived with his nephew, F. Walter Wale, in the summer of 1603. Both vied with each other in giving themselves up to the ministry of the Word : and both were marked out for the vengeance of the government. A troop of horse was sent by the Viceroy to Cork to apprehend them at the dawn of the 5th of September, 1606 : but God delivered his servants from their malice. F. Kearney in a letter dated the 4th of October, that year, after mentioning this escape, writes that he followed his Excellency’s footsteps to Waterford, and entered that City unsuspected with the immense concourse of the spectators, and was an ear and eye witness to his triumphant reception. His Excellency on arriving at the Court House, summoned before him eleven of the most respectable inhabitants of Waterford, viz. Paul Sherlock, who had been elected Mayor for the ensuing year, Nicholas Marian, Michael Brown, Nicholas White, James Fagan,* Nicholas Strong, James Sherlock, Richard Wadding, James Walsh, Patrick White, Richard Boucher; six neglected to make their appearance, and were heavily fined, and ordered to present themselves at Cork. The five who attended, with great spirit professed that they would never swerve an iota from the Roman Catholic Religion which they had inherited from their Fathers; but should ever manifest loyal allegiance to their Sovereign, and obedience to his representatives in all civil and political matters. His Excellency marked his indignation at this bold expression of sentiment imposed a heavy fine, and gave them in charge to his Secretary, until they should alter their opinions. Finding them immovably firm in their faith, he caused them to appear before the Lord Chief Justice, who endeavoured to gain them over by promises of place and emolument, and assured them that the Government would be satisfied, if they would but once attend the Protestant service. But these heroes well knowing that dissimulation in Religion was inadmissible, refused their consent, telling him, that they had given, and ever would give undeniable proofs of their civil allegiance; that it could never benefit the king’s interests for them to act against the dictates of conscience; and that they could not believe that the King wished them to make such a sacrifice of principle. The Sheriffs JAMES WAISH and JAMES BREWER “vere duae olivae in Domo Dei”, were then attacked; but with no better success. One hundred and sixty citizens were then selected as likely persons to be prevailed on to surrender conscience to the motives of fear and interest; but God who chooses the weak things of the world to confound the strong, supplied them with courage to resist every assault, and not one, God be praised, of the whole number, nor even in the whole population of Waterford, comprising many thousands of inhabitants, would degrade himself by an act of hypocrisy and apostasy. In revenge, tyrannical iniquity, calling itself justice, and the gospel of the Redeemer, inflicted pecuniary penalties. The base attempt of the Chief Justice to rob the inhabitants of Ross of their conscientious integrity proved equally abortive. “The Viceroy in his progress towards Carrick was informed that Nicholas Madan harboured in his castle of Whitfeld, three miles from Waterford, a learned English Priest, Thomas Hill, an Alumnus of the English College at Rome. Under some specious pretext, his Excellency proceeded in that direction with a troop of horse, and sent a detachment to search every corner of the Castle; but they found nothing, and Mr. Hill, thanks be to God, is still safe in Ireland”. The letter is dated from his hiding place, where his brother, the Archbishop of Cashell lay also concealed “e nostro latibulo, ubi frater modo est”, 4 Octobri, 1606.
F. Kearney continued during the long period of 37 years and in very difficult times the diligent and faithful Steward of the mysteries of God. The friend of peace, the promoter of habits of honest industry and sobriety, this true patriot, deserved to hear that his efforts to advance the public good, and prevent the disturbance of the public tranquillity, were duly appreciated by the constituted authorities. Even judges of assizes were known to declare in open court, that the two Jesuits, Barnaby Kearney and Walter Wale, did more to prevent robbery, than all the terrors of the law, than all the framers of coercive restrictions. I find by a letter of F. Robert Nugent, dated (ex Hybernia 1 Octobris, 1640) the following account of his death :
“F. Barnaby Kearney, an old man of 75 well spent years, quitted on the 20th day of August the labors of this life, as we hope, for everlasting rest, fortified with all the Sacraments of the Church. He had spent 51 years in the Society, and 37 in the Mission, was professed of the Four Vows, and was always zealous in preaching, (some of his sermons are in print) : in various places he taught the people with Evangelic fervour and abundant fruit!”
The sermons alluded to in this paragraph are in Latin for the Sundays and feasts in the whole year. The Title of the book is “Heliotropion”, in 8vo. printed at Lyons in 1622. A second volume of his sermons, on the Passion of Christ, was published in an octavo form at Paris, in 1633. He left in MS. an account of the death of the Earl of Ormond. This nobleman, I take it, was Thomas Butler, called “The Black Earl”, in whose conversion before his death, in 1614, F. Kearney was greatly instrumental.

  • The Fagans were generous supporters of religion. F. Fitzsimon, in a letter dated 25th of November, 1599, mentions, “Dominus Thomas Fagan, insignis Benefactor noster”. as entitled to the special prayers and gratitude of the Society.

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, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/kelly-austin-michael-10674/text18973, 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”.

◆ The Belvederian, Dublin, 1962

Our Past

Father Austin Kelly SJ

Father Austin Kelly SJ (1909) celebrated his Golden Jubilee as a Jesuit this year. In request for information he wrote this most interesting letter:

“I was a boy at Belvedere when the first number of the ‘Belvederian’ was published: the Editor was Mr Bernard Page SJ, an Anglo-Australian scholastic belonging to the Irish Province, who was very popular: we used ‘rag’ him a good deal, calling him by various nicknames - ‘Nap’ for in appearance and build he was like Napoleon or ‘The Owl’, for he resembled that bird, or just simply ‘Barney’.

Those were the spacious days of Father Nicholas J Tomkin's Rectorship. We began school at 10 a.m, and finished at 3p.m. I began at Beivedere in September 1903 in Second Grammar class, taught in all four periods by Mr Robert Dillon-Kelly SJ. I went up the school to First Arts class in 1908, my class companions being, among others I have forgotten, Arthur Cox, Gerald Delamer, Joe Little, Andy Horne, Jim Talion, Harry Gerard, Joe Dixon, Malvy White, etc.

We were privileged in those years to have a very distinguished band of Jesuit teachers, Father James Whittaker, and as Scholastics Messrs Frank Browne, Patrick Bartley, James McCann, Willie Doyle, John M O'Connor, Martin Corbett. The famous Father James Cullen was Spiritual Father and every new boy had to stand the test of tremendous hand-grip from him, until the tears came into your eyes.

Belvedere owes a great debt to the late Father James McCann, who as Sportsmaster put the school on the map: in 1904-5 he entered Belvedere for the Leinster Schools' Rugby Cup. The Captain of that first XV was Bob Carroll and two of the surviving members I know are Father Willie Owens SJ, in Australia, and my brother, Father Tom Kelly, now in Mungret. The latter captained the First XV in 1906-7, and was picked for the Leinster Interprovincial team. The following year Jack Burke-Gaffney was captain, and I got on the XV. In the winter of 1908 was played the first rugby match ever between Belvedere and Clongowes. It was on a Sunday and we went down by car and were welcomed at the Castle by the Rector, Father T V Nolan SJ. Clongowes won; their captain was the late P F Quinlan of Perth, WA, who later captained Trinity at football and cricket. The actual captain of Clongowes XV then was J B Minch, afterwards capped for Ireland; this day he was disabled and Quinlan, as vice captain, took his place. The Belvedere captain was Noel Purcell. That year, too, Portora Royal School came from Enniskillen to play Belvedere: it was their most famous team captained by Dicky Lloyd and with three future internationals playing. After the match we entertained them to a dinner at the Railway Hotel, Amiens St. I recall the menu cards printed in yellow and black, the Portora colours. You may guess who was the Sports master of Belvedere it was Mr John M O'Connor SJ.

In these years Belvedere excelled in swimming, winning several years running the Schools Championship and the Water Polo. The Belvedere Gala was the annual event of the swimming world-each year a well-known champion was brought to swim as a special attraction; one year it was Cecil Healy (Old Riverview) winner of the 100 metres at the first revived Olympic Games at Athens, and another, two Hungarians, winners at the London Olympics in 1908.

The great tradition of Belvedere's excellence in sport was begun thus, thanks to the energy and enterprise of two fine sports masters, later to be Fathers James McCann and John M O'Connor.

Life was always full of interest at Belvedere: interest in work was keyed up by the institution of weekly exams, with the results posted up on Monday mornings; the weekly card system was started, in which four cards could be won for the four periods, with the promise that every boy who got 16 cards for the month would get a book-prize of his own choice stamped with the Belvedere crest in gold. It worked very well, but I fear it was too expensive, for after Father Tomkin's time it was dropped. Plays, too, added greatly to the joy of life; I remember two I took part in - ‘Little Lord Fauntleroy’ and ‘The Pair of Spectacles’. I was only a danseuse in the first, but had a big part in the Pair of Spectacles. This play was probably the most successful ever put on the Belvedere stage, and that is saying a lot. Professor Burke trained us for the elocution, and Mr James McCann produced the play. The stage-managers were Father Whittaker and Mr Frank Browne. It ran for two nights and two afternoons; the afternoon performances were for the Belvedere Union and their friends. Old Goldfinch was acted splendidly by Jack Burke-Gaffney, with Vinnie O'Hare as his brother Gregory coming a good second; the other actors were Eddie Freeman, Andy Horne, Theo McWeeney, Raymond Redmond and Maurice King.

In 1909 Mr John M O'Connor SJ, founded the Debating Society, and I became a member, for it was open to the immediate Past. We had a full-dress Inaugural Meeting in the theatre, our Auditor being Arthur Cox, and two distinguished guests as speakers, Mr Tim Healy, KC, MP, and young Mr Eugene Sheehy, then Auditor of the Solicitors' Literary and Historical Society.

I passed Matric. in the Old Royal in 1908 and left school early in 1909. I was in a business firm in the city, Messrs. Ferrier Pollock, for three years, taking my Arts Degree NUI by private study in 1911. On February 29th, 1912, I entered the Jesuit Novitiate at Tullabeg. There had been a rather lean period of years for vocations, but after my going quite a good number followed, most of them still going strong, viz., my brother, Father Tom Kelly, Fathers Charlie Molony, Rupert Coyle, Don Donnelly, Leo Donnelly, Paul O'Flanagan.

I followed the usual Jesuit pattern: Philosophy at Stonyhurst; teaching and sportsmaster four years at Mungret; Theology at Louvain; Ordination at Milltown Park on St. Ignatius' Day 1923; then Tertianship at Tullabeg 1925-26, after which I was sent to Australia, which was the ‘mission’ of the Irish Province. My first job in Australia was sportsmaster at Xavier College, Kew, 1926 27, and in 1928 I was posted as Minister in St Aloysius' College, Sydney, where I became Rector in 1931 until 1938, when I was sent to Perth, WA, to open the first Jesuit College there, St Louis School, Claremont. I was there until October 1947, when I was appointed Provincial of the Australian Vice-province, which became a full Province in 1950. After my term as Provincial in 1956, I was sent as Superior of the Australian Jesuit Mission in Hazaribagh, Bihar, India, where I still am”.

When Father Austin was celebrating his Jubilee in India he was not forgotten by those for whom he had worked so well in Australia. In a newsletter published by the Australian Jesuits giving news of their mission in Hazaribagh we find the following testimony to him:

“Father Austin Kelly will be the recipient of many good wishes from many parts of the world. May we Australian co-missionaries join them in offering Our Jubilarian our heartiest congratulations, and our prayer that he may be spared for God's service - ad multos annos”.

From Belvedere, so many thousands of miles away, we have great pleasure in sending out our best wishes for God's blessing on Father Austin and every success in his apostolic ministry.

◆ The The Belvederian, Dublin, 1979

Obituary

Father Austin Kelly SJ

It is with deep sorrow that we have to record the death of Father Austin Kelly, so soon after that of his brother Tom, whose death we referred to in the last edition of this journal.

Austin, the youngest of three Kelly brothers, came to Belvedere in 1901, and for the next seven years was prominent in the academic, athletic and cultural activities of the college. Apart from his success at his studies, where he excelled in French and English, he figured in such diverse features of the life of the school as Amateur Dramatics, Rugby Football and Water Polo. In most of the athletic activities of the College, including Tennis as well as those two already mentioned above, he figured in the teams in the various inter-school competitions.

On leaving school Austin went to continue his studies at University College, Dublin, and it was from there that he entered the Society of Jesus. In due course, he spent a period teaching in Mungret College in Limerick. He was ordained in Milltown Park in 1922, on the same day as his elder brother Tom. Soon afterwards Austin was transferred to Australia, at that time a Vice-Province ad ministered from Ireland.

Father Austin soon made his mark in his new environment, and having served in various parts of Australia he was appointed Vice-Provincial in 1947. He was still holding that office when Australia became a separate Province, and Father Austin was appointed its first Provincial. The change naturally entailed a considerable amount of hard work in matters of organization, and administration, specially with an expanding Mission Field. Nobody could have been more suited to have undertaken this work than Father Austin.

In 1956, having ended his period as Provincial, Austin moved to a new Mission in India. Here he remained until 1962 before returning once more to Australia. He was stationed at Hawthorn, New South Wales when, in 1974 his health began to fail. He survived to pay one last visit to his native Ireland, where he was united with his brother Tom at Mungret College. Returning to Australia Father Austin died in October 1978, not much more than a year after the death of his brother whom he had so recently visited. May God have him for ever in His keeping.
Our sincere sympathy goes out to Austin's relatives and friends, bereaved once more in so short a time. We pray that God may give them the grace of his consolation.

-oOo-

Fr. Sean Monahan, S.J. (O.B.), now in Australia, sent us the photograph and some of the material that appeared in print to mark the death of Fr. Austin Kelly:

MISSION FOUNDER, FORMER JESUIT PROVINCIAL, DIES IN MELBOURNE

Father Austin Kelly, S.J., died on Wednesday night (October 11) in Caritas Christi Hospice, Kew, after a long illness, at the age of 87.

Born at Blackrock, Co Dublin, he completed an Arts degree at the National University of Ireland before entering the Society of Jesus in 1912.

After further studies in Ireland and Belgium, and some years teaching at Mungret College, he came to Australia in 1926.

He was Prefect of Discipline for a year at Xavier College, Kew, and then went to St Aloysius' College, Milson's Point, NSW, where he was Rector from 1931 to 1937.

In 1938 he went to Perth to set up St. Louis Jesuit School in Claremont.

Appointed Australian Provincial in 1947, he founded the Australian Jesuit Mission in India four years later. In this, as in so many of his projects, his thinking was far ahead of his time.

Going to India as Superior of the Missions from 1956 to 1962, he helped to give it the strong foundation on which it has grown so splendidly. He kept up his interest in the Mission when he came back to parish work a year later.

Cultured, deeply pious, and meticulous, Father Kelly was an outstanding Headmaster - perhaps a great one. Much as he required of staff and stu dents, he asked more of himself.

Probably only those who knew him intimately realize the depth of his attachment to his family and to Ireland, and how much it cost him to be so far from home. Here as well as in India, he was a true missionary,

Always on the alert to recognize new ways of living the Jesuit tradition he understood so well and loved so dearly, Father Kelly was always eager 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 they way they did. The one thing that mattered was the growth of God's Kingdom through his devotion and theirs.

Father Kelly will be remembered with lasting affection and gratitude by all who worked with him, as well as by hundreds of mission-workers, past students, teachers, and other friends who treasured his neat and prompt hand-written letters.

John W Doyle

Kelly, Edward, 1824-1905, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/202
  • Person
  • 03 December 1824-07 February 1905

Born: 03 December 1824, Dublin
Entered: 23 October 1842, Leuven, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 1855
Final vows: 02 February 1860
Died: 07 February 1905, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

Middle brother of William - RIP 1909 and Thomas - RIP 1898

by 1854 Studying at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG)

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Middle brother of William - RIP 1909 and Thomas - RIP 1898

Edward was a distinguished Preacher and Teacher, and taught with great distinction at Clongowes.
he was the First Rector of Crescent.
1889 He was appointed Superior at Gardiner St where he worked until his much lamented death 07 February 1905. He was loved by all, poor and rich. A man of rare quality.

(cf “Irish Monthly”, Vol 34, 1906, pp1, 162, 218, 264 and 320) (cf “Irish Catholic” 07 February 1905)
“Father Kelly was one of the great men of our Province. He sat in the General Congregation that elected Father Anton Maria Anderley, as Swiss Jesuit as General, and was to have gone to the Congregation which elected Father Luis Martin of Spain, but bad health kept him away, and Robert Carbery replaced him as 1st Substitute. He was frequently sent to Congregations of Procurators.

A most scholarly man, very kind and generous. He was ill for a very short time, and died peacefully and happily at Gardiner St 07 February 1905. The Minister Father Bannon and Father Joe McDonnell were present at his death.

◆ The Clongownian, 1905

Obituary

Father Edwad Kelly SJ

by Father Matthew Russell SJ

One of the holiest and most amiable, one of the most admirable and most gifted, one of the most widely and most warmly loved of Irish priests has finished his course on earth. Father Edward Kelly SJ, died in the Presbytery attached to St Francis Xavier's Church, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin, about 10 pm on Tuesday; February 7th. He died in his native city, almost in the street in which he was born December 3rd, 1824. He had thus quite lately completed his 80th year. His birthday was the feast of the most famous of Jesuit saints, under whose invocation was soon to be erected hard by the well-known church in which Father Kelly did the chief-part of his life's work.

The Jesuit Fathers indeed were already teaching and preaching still nearer, in Hardwicke Street, but Edward Kelly seems not to have attended their day school, as his younger brother did, just before the school was removed to its present home, Belvedere House, 6. Great Denmark Street, whither Thomas Kelly followed it. But Edward Kelly also was a pupil of the Society in which he became so efficient a master, for he finished his early education at Clongowes, where he was the pride and boast of his Professor, Father Henry James Rorke, afterwards so well known at St Francis Xavier's, Gardiner Street. In his eighteenth year he became a novice of the Society of Jesus, the first of the three brothers, who might have adopted as their own the dedication of Miss May Probyn's “Pansies”:

“Three; we learned together
At our mother's knee
Three, through altered weather
The highway travel we
God send, in heaven's gold ether,
We stand before Him, three”.

The first of this remarkable family, William Kelly, older than Edward by a year only, did not enter the Society till 1850, some years after even his brother Thomas, who was eight years his junior, having meanwhile passed through a course of theology at Maynooth, with a brilliant reputation which was one of the cherished traditions of the place many years later. The only sister of these brothers became a Sister of Mercy in the mother-house of the Order, in Lower Baggot Street, Dublin; but before her novitiate was finished she bravely volunteered to be one of a band of Sisters who founded the first Australian convent in Perth, Western Australia, some fifty years ago. This separation must have been an immense sacrifice for the heroic maiden, as it certainly was an abiding sorrow for the affectionate hearts that she left at home. No family could possibly be more tenderly united to one another.

Edward Kelly began his noviceship in Belgium, on the 23rd of October; 1842. After taking the Vows of religion towards the end of 1844, he began a long term of work on the staff of Clongowes College, where for some years he really filled the place of several professors, joining to the rhetoric class the class of natural and experimental philosophy, in which Father Edward Kernan succeeded him, devoting himself exclusively to what had been only one of the other Father Edward's many activities. Father Kelly was eminently successful in all his work, gaining the admiration and affection and un bounded confidence of his scholars. When he became a scholar again himself, he passed through his four years of theological studies with great distinction at St Beuno's, North Wales. After his ordination, he was employed again in teaching at Belvedere till he was chosen to be the first Rector of St Munchin's College, Limerick, which was entrusted to the Society of Jesus by the Most Rev Dr Ryan, Bishop of Limerick, in March, 1859. The old Bishop, a shrewd judge of character, had a great esteem for the young Rector, and his successor, the Most Rev Dr Butler, honoured him with his confidence and friendship. In the difficulty and anxiety of the new foundation he received support that no other could have given him from his younger brother, not yet a priest, but ordained at Maynooth the following Pentecost. The sacred text about the strength of a broth