County Wexford



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County Wexford

  • UF Wexford
  • UF Co. Wexford
  • UF Loch Garman

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County Wexford

84 Name results for County Wexford

22 results directly related Exclude narrower terms

Allen, William, 1900-1964, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/553
  • Person
  • 05 October 1900-15 May 1964

Born: 05 October 1900, Slaney Street, Wexford
Entered: 07 October 1918, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1934, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 15 August 1937
Died: 15 May 1964, Talbot Lodge, Kinsealy, Dublin

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

by 1929 in Australia - Regency

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
1927-1929 Sent to Australia, being assigned to St Ignatius College, Riverview as a teacher and Prefect of the Chapel.
1929-1931 Xavier College, Burke Hall as Prefect of Discipline and assistant Master of Ceremonies.
1931-1935 Returned to Milltown Park for Theology
1935-1936 Tertianship at St Beuno’s, Wales
1936-1938 He returned to Australia and St Aloysius College, Milsons Point as Minister and Director of the Crusaders of the Blessed Sacrament. He also edited the “Aloysian”.
1939-1946 He was appointed to Burke Hall teaching and Prefect of Discipline.
1947 Back in Ireland and spent the rest of his life as assistant Director of the “Ricci Mission unit”, helping with the periodical “Irish Jesuit Missions”.

He was a man noted for his wit and acting ability, but did not seem happy or successful as a classroom teacher.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 22nd Year No 2 1947
Clongowes :
Fr. W. Allen, of the Viceprovince of Australia, arrived in Dublin on 16th March, and is now teaching at Clongowes.
Irish Province News 39th Year No 4 1964
Obituary :
Fr William Allen SJ (1900-1964)

Fr. Allen was born in Slaney Street, Wexford, on 5th October 1900. He went to school first at the Mercy Convent, and later, when the family moved to Dublin, to the Christian Brothers School, Synge Street.
It was at a mission given by Fr. Tom Murphy, S.J. in St. Kevin's, Harrington Street, that Fr. Allen decided to become a Jesuit. Fr. Murphy arranged for him to see Fr. Michael Browne, of whom he wrote long after: “I was at once impressed and captivated by the sanctity of the priest”.
Fr. Allen entered in Tullabeg on 7th October 1918. After the noviceship he spent a year in the Juniorate before going to Rathfarnham and U.C.D., where he took his B.A. degree in 1924. For the next three years he studied philosophy in Milltown Park. In 1927 he went to Australia for his teaching, first in Riverview, then in Burke Hall, the preparatory school for Xavier, Melbourne.
In 1931 he returned to Milltown for theology, and was ordained on 31st July 1934. In 1935 he went to St. Beuno's for his tertianship, and in 1936 returned to Australia, teaching at St. Aloysius College, Sydney. In January 1937 he became Minister there, teaching, and in charge of the Crusaders and the Holy Angels Sodality. After some years he was changed to Burke Hall, prefecting and teaching, and in charge of the Apostleship of Prayer.
Fr. Allen returned to Ireland at Easter 1947, and went to Clongowes where during the summer he worked in the people's church. His Sunday sermons were appreciated by the people. However, already he was experiencing the defective hearing and consequent anxiety about Confessions, which were to restrict his work in the coming years. On the Status he was changed to Tullabeg, engaged in the work of the Ricci Mission Unit, as the Stamp Bureau was then called. He remained at this post till the end of his life, nearly seventeen years later. His heart was in Tullabeg, and although he greatly missed the philosophers when they went abroad in 1962, he was grateful to have been left in the place he liked best.
Shortly before Easter of this year he became unwell. An operation was found necessary, and was successfully undergone early in April. Throughout, he was in good spirits, “won all our hearts”, as the surgeon put it. He was sincerely appreciative of the kindness shown him during his illness by Fr. Rector, the doctors, nurses, and by Ours who visited him and supported him by their prayers. A good recovery followed. While waiting for a room in the convalescent home at Talbot Lodge, he spent some days in Milltown Park which he greatly enjoyed. He then went to Talbot Lodge, where every day he was up and about, and able to go out. But on Friday, 15th May, he collapsed and died.
Fr. Allen came of a family of whom two became priests - an Oblate Father, and himself a Jesuit - three became Christian Brothers, and three sisters became nuns in the Convent of the Incarnate Word, Texas.
He was a man of deep faith and simple piety. As a small boy, he used to serve Mass in the Franciscan Friary in Wexford. All his life he remained devoted to the service of the altar, training acolytes in the colleges, and later, when the scholastics left Tullabeg, instructing the small boys from around to serve in the people's church. It was with such younger boys that his work had mostly brought him into touch. His kindly ways, his jokes, won them to him, though their collective exuberance sometimes eluded his control.
The boys valued his kindliness. Some of them, some of their parents, kept in touch with him since his earliest days in Australia. Through the Advocate, coming each week from friends in Melbourne, through the college magazines carefully preserved in his room, through the catalogues and the Australian Province News, he followed with interest the careers of boys he had known, and the work of our Fathers in Australia.
In community life, he was always kindly, and, when in good spirits, cheerful even to infectious hilarity over stories, jokes, verses, sometimes of a nursery rhyme variety.
He preserved to the end and mellowed in that simple piety of childhood, a piety reflected in an exact observance of rule. In times of depression in these latter years, he sometimes, though always without a trace of bitterness, contrasted the little he seemed to himself to have achieved in life, with the accomplishments of others busy in active apostolate. He was consoled by the assurance that a hidden, prayerful life like his own, could do as much for God and souls as any absorbing apostolate.
He had learned well the lessons of his noviceship in Tullabeg, particularly about fidelity to the spiritual duties of rule. His day began with morning oblation and closed with visit after night examen.
In the people's church, which he loved so well and where he usually: said Mass, he celebrated with a prayerful reverence by which he will be best remembered.

Archer, Edward, 1606-1649, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/876
  • Person
  • 1606-15 August 1649

Born: 1606, County Kilkenny
Entered: 07 January 1630, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Ordained: c. 1639, Roman College, Rome, Italy
Died: 15 August 1649, New Ross Residence

Entered at Rome, owned a pair of gloves, read Philosophy for 3 years, taught Grammar for 2 years. Early Irish College student.
1636 at College of Città di Castello (ROM)
1640 came from Rome to Ireland
1648-1649 Superior at New Ross

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1640 Came to Ireland from Rome
1648 Superior at New Ross
A learned man, he passed in London for an Italian Priest.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
After First Vows at St Andrea, he completed his Philosophy course at the Roman College, and then spent a year of Regency at Città di Castello. He made his Theology studies at the Roman College and was Ordained priest c.1639.
1641 Returned to Ireland and was appointed to teach humanities and be Superior of the New Ross residence where he died, 15 August 1649.
(On Entry he may well be the “Edwardus Archerus Lagen”, the eighth on a list of twenty-two students of the Irish College, Rome, while it was under the super- vision of the Franciscans).

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
ARCHER, EDWARD. I find by his letter, dated London, 27th of November, 1640, that by favour of the Venetian Embassador, he had safely arrived in England. In the report of Pere Verdier, (the Visitor of the Irish Mission, S. J.) dated 24th June, 1649, I find F. Edward Archer was then Superior of his brethren at Ross Co. Wexford, and commendable for his religious merits. When, or where he died I have searched for in vain.

Barrick, Michael John, 1585/6-1648, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/899
  • Person
  • 1585/6-26 March 1648

Born: 1585/6, New Ross, County Wexford
Entered: 1606, Lisbon, Portugal - Lusitania Province (LUS)
Ordained: 1615, Évora, Portugal
Died: 26 March 1648, New Ross, County Wexford

Studied in Portugal, was examined for Grades after 4 years of Theology
1617 came on Irish Mission.
1622 in East Munster (Waterford).
Very talented but sickly

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1617-1646 In Ireland
He is identical with “Michael Burrice” in Foley’s "Collectanea"

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Studied at Irish College Lisbon before Ent 1606 Lisbon
After First Vows he completed his studies at Évora and was ordained in 1615
1617 Sent to Ireland and exercised ministry at New Ross until his death there 26 March, 1648

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Michael Barick 1585/6-1648
Michael Barick was born in New Ross in 1582 or 5, and entered the Society in 1606 or 1610.

He returned to Ireland in 1617, and remained on the Mission until his death, which occurred between 1646 and 1649. Ther are very meagre details of a man’s life which can be accounted for by the fact that numerous letters sent by Superiors to Rome never reached their destination. Furthermore, if Fr Barick laboured in Ireland for about 30 years, as he did, he only succeeded in doing so by lying low and going round in disguise. In his case, the lack of information is complicated by the fact that his name is often given as “Burrice”.

Bowe, John, 1848-1883, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/936
  • Person
  • 06 April 1848-01 November 1883

Born: 06 April 1848, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 16 March 1872, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 01 November 1883, Milltown Park, Dublin

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He was a tailor by trade, and he spent the eleven years of his life in the Society at Milltown, as Sartor and Manductor to the Brother Novices. He was also a kind Infirmarian.
He lost one of his eyes a few years before his death, struck by a hot iron.
He was most patient in his final suffering, and lingered on until his death at Milltown 01 November 1883.

Buckeridge, George, 1842-1904, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/967
  • Person
  • 19 January 1842-30 October 1904

Born: 19 January 1842, County Wexford
Entered: 15 July 1878, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: pre Entry
Final Vows: 15 August 1889, Australia
Died: 30 October 1904, St Ignatius College, Manresa, Norwood, Adelaide, Australia

Came to Australia with James O’Connor, Joseph Tuite and scholastic John O’Neill 1886

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
His Nephew John Bradshaw died a Novice at Cork (Milltown) 15 December 1881

At the age of 15 he went to Propaganda College in Rome, graduating D Phil 1862, and D Theol 1866.
When he returned to Ireland he was appointed by Archbishop Cullen as Professor of Theology at Clonliffe. He spent eleven years there teaching Dogmatic and Moral Theology and also Canon Law. He was known for his piety and asceticism during these years. He had no interests in titles, and longed to be released from his position at Clonliffe, but his request was often deferred. Eventually in 1878 Dr Cullen granted his request, and in July of that year he Entered the Society. 1886 He was sent to Australia where he worked in the Colleges and Churches of the Mission for eighteen years. He died at Norwood, Adelaide 30 October 1904.

Note from James O’Connor Entry :
1886 He was sent to Australia, and sailed with Joseph Tuite, George Buckeridge and Scholastic John O’Neill.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280 :
He had studied for the priesthood at Propaganda College, Rome, graduating as Doctor of Philosophy (1862) and theology (1866). When he returned to Ireland, Cardinal Cullen appointed him a professor at Holy Cross College, Clonliffe, where he taught for eleven years. After repeated requests for release in order to join the Society, cardinal Cullen granted his request in 1878, and he entered at Milltown Park.

1880-1886 After First Vows he gave Retreats and performed pastoral work at Milltown Park, except for a year teaching the Rudiments class at Clongowes, French and Italian.
1886-1889 He arrived in Australia and was appointed to St Patrick’s College, Melbourne as Prefect of Studies, and he was also involved in pastoral work
1889-1891 He went to Xavier College Kew as Spiritual Father and Assistant Prefect of Studies.
1891-1894 He was appointed Superior and Parish Priest at Hawthorn Victoria
1894-1896 He went to St Mary’s Sydney as Minister.
1896 He undertook Missions in the Adelaide parishes of Norwood and Hectorville, and then volunteered to work in the Indian Jesuit Mission at Changanasserry, Travancore, Kerala. When he arrived in India he found that an Indian Bishop had been appointed and the General ordered him to return to Australia.
1897-1898 He served at the Richmond Parish
1898-1901 He served at the Hawthorn Parish as Superior and Parish priest
1902-1904 He served at the Norwood Parish.

He was one of the few Jesuits in Australia to be nominated for a Bishopric, however another candidate was chosen.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father George Buckeridge 1842-1904
George Buckeridge was born in the diocese of Dublin in 1842. At the age of 15 he went to the College of Propaganda in Rome where he had a distinguished course. In 1862 he was made Doctor of Philosophy, and in 1866, Doctor of Theology.

On his return to Ireland, He was appointed by Cardinal Cullen as professor of Theology at Clonliffe College Dublin. Here he spent eleven years. During those years he was known as Dr Buckeridge, but titles of distinction, even ecclesiastical distinction, had no attraction for him. He longed to cut himself off in the humble obscurity of a religious order, from all chance of ecclesiastical preferment. To this end, he petitioned each year to be released from his responsible position, and each year his request was refused. At last, during the long vacation of 1878, Cardinal Cullen granted his request, and on July 15th 1878, he entered the Society of Jesus at Milltown Park.

He went to Australia in 1886 where he laboured with an active zeal in the Colleges and churches for eighteen years, and died on October 30th 1904, in the Residence, Norwood, South Australia.

Butler, James, 1579-1639, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/976
  • Person
  • 1579-02 December 1639

Born: 1579, New Ross, County Wexford
Entered: Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Professed: 05 July 1622
Died: 02 December 1639, New Ross Residence, County Wexford

1617 In Ireland age 28 and in Soc 18 years
1621 Catalogue Studied 4 years Theology. Taught Humanities for 3 years and was examined Ad Grad. Robust with good talent and judgement. Very irritable. A Good preacher
1622 In East Munster
1626 In Ireland

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
Professor of Rhetoric; good Theologian and Preacher;
1613 Was stationed at New Ross and in 1621, and probably died there.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Richard and Alonsa née Archer - Nephew of James Archer
Went to Irish College Salamanca 01 December 1695 before Ent at Villagarcía 13 October 1600
1600-1613 After First Vows spent his studies and Regency in various CAST houses
1613 Sent to Ireland and the New Ross Residence where he spent the rest of his life, until his death there in 1639

Cahill, Patrick, 1708-1766, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/997
  • Person
  • 06 March 1708-16 December 1766

Born: 06 March 1708, New Ross, County Wexford
Entered: 13 July 1730, Nancy, France - Campaniae Province (CAMP)
Ordained: 23 September 1742, Tours, France
Final Vows: 15 August 1746
Died: 16 December 1766, France/Ireland - Campaniae Province (CAMP)

1737 Teaching Humanities at Sens
1741-1744 Studying Theology and Prefect of Boarders at Irish College Poitiers
1746 at Charleville (CAMP) teaching Humanities and Philosophy
1748 Sent to Poitiers and also is in Ireland. Back in Poitiers 1749
1752 Procurator at Poitiers
1763-1767 in Ireland
Some confusion over dates he was in Poitiers and in Ireland - including saying he was said to be still in Ireland in 1767

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1748 Taught Humanities for five years and Philosophy for three at Charleville (in pen)
1752 Procurator at Irish College Poitiers (in pen)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ General Notes
After First Vows he studied Philosophy at Pont-à-Mousson (1733-1735) and then Theology at Grand Collège Poitiers. In the meantime he had spent seven years in regency at Épinal, Sens and Auxerre.
1740-1744 He was sent for Theology to Grand Collège Poitiers, whilst living at the Irish College there. He was Ordained at Tours 23/09/1742
1744-1747 After Ordination and completing his formation he held a Chair of Philosophy at Charleville CAMP
1748-1755 At Poitiers as Procurator of the Irish College for seven years, when it is thought he was to go to Ireland. he is mentioned in subsequent CATS as being in Ireland, but at that time this could also mean at one of the Irish Colleges or Mission

According to CAMP CAT he was living in Ireland up to 1767, but there is no evidence to support this. He may be identical with a Father Cahill living at Bordeaux in 1759, and could have been working with a large colony of Irish there. The date and place of his death are unknown.

Carberie, Ignatius, 1628-1697, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1008
  • Person
  • 01 February 1629-29 April 1697

Born: 01 February 1629, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1648, Kilkenny
Ordained: 27 March 1655, Lille, France
Died: 29 April 1697, Bridge Street, Dublin

Studied 2 years Philosophy before entering
1655 On the Mission
1666 Living near Drogheda teaching, catechising and administering sacraments
1698 “Fr Carberry and Michael Fitzgerald lived at Bridge St Dublin”. In 1678 he lived in Baldoyle (Hogan reporting Fr Nicholas Netterville in a report”

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Three Entries Ignatius and Edward
Son of James - who, before he Ent, took him to see the celebrated Dr Arthur, or Limerick (cf Arthur’s “Diary” in “Kilkenny Archaeological Journal”, and Foley’s Collectanea
Had studied Humanities and two years Philosophy before Ent. Knew Latin, Spanish, Irish and English. (HIB Catalogue 1650 - ARSI)
1666 Living near New Ross engaged in Teaching, Catechising and administering the Sacraments. A Missioner for ten years (HIB Catalogue 1666 - ARSI)
1697 Reported to the Government as living at Bridge St, Dublin
Edward Carberie
Ent c 1648; RIP post 1660
His name appears written in Tursellini’s “Epitome Historiarum” printed in 1660
Note from Entry on Michael FitzGerald (Ent 1679) :
Ignatius Carbery, Priest, and Michael GitzGerald, Priest, lived in Bridge Street in 1697 (Report by a spy). Both were Jesuits probably.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
After First Vows he completed his studies at Lille and was Ordained there 27 March 1655
1655 Sent to Ireland and Dublin, and in spite of the “commonwealth” was still living in Dublin in 1658
The large part of his missionary work was outside Dublin and lived at Drogheda 1664-1666
For many years after this he lived at Baldoyle as a Catechist, Schoolmaster and Assistant Priest. After the Williamite occupation of the country he returned to Dublin where he worked until his death 29 April 1697. he is buried in St Catherine’s churchyard.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
CARBERRY, IGNATIUS, was, a Novice at Kilkenny in 1648

Conway, Richard, 1572-1626, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1096
  • Person
  • 1572-01 December 1626

Born: 1572, New Ross, County Wexford
Entered: 22 July 1592, Coimbra, Portugal - Lusitaniae province (LUS)
Ordained: 1600, Salamanca, Spain
Professed: 06 January 1613
Died: 01 December 1626, Irish College, Seville, Spain - Baeticae Province (BAE)

Studied 3 years Arts and 2 of Theology at Coimbra before Entry
1603 At Salamanca has 3 years Philosophy and 4 years Theology and is a Confessor
1612 in Compostella where he wrote an account of O’Devaney’s in Ireland martyrdom from an eyewitness
1614 At Madrid College
1617 In Province of Castellanae
1622 Rector of Irish College Seville
1624 At Madrid, Prefect of College

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica”:
He was a Rector and a great promoter of the Irish Colleges in Spain; Writer;
He was zealous and pious.
He was tied to a tree by robbers and miraculously freed by the Blessed Virgin Mary and his Angel Guardian (cf Foley’s Collectanea)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ:
Son of Patrick and his wife née White
Studied Humanities at Irish College Lisbon 1589/1590 before Ent 22 July 1592 at Coimbra
After First Vows was sent to Spain for studies, to Montforte for Philosophy and Royal College Salamanca for Theology and was Ordained there 1600.
From the completion of his studies until the end of his life he was destined to play an important part in the organisation and support of the Irish Colleges of Salamanca, Santiago, and Seville.
1600-1608 At Salamanca as Spiritual Father but frequently filled in as vice-Rector during the many absences of Thomas White, who was constantly travelling seeking alms for the College,
1608-1613 Rector Irish College Salamanca
1613-1618 Appointed Rector of Irish College Santiago
1619-1622 First Rector of new Irish College Seville - lent to BAE
1622-1625 Freed from Seville to organise the finances of the Irish Colleges from the procurator's office at Madrid.
1625 Appointed Rector of Seville again and died in Office 01 December 1626
Richard Conway, it can ·be justly claimed, was one of the most eminent of Irish Churchmen of the seventeenth century. Under his prudent guidance for over a quarter of a century the three Irish Colleges under the control of the Jesuits in Spain sent forth to the Mission in their home country an army of splendidly trained priests prepared with knowledge and animated by zeal to maintain the Catholic faith in all its purity amongst their countrymen.

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Conway, Richard
by Terry Clavin

Conway, Richard (1572–1626), Jesuit, was born in New Ross, Co. Tipperary, son of Patrick Conway; nothing is known of his mother. In 1590 he travelled to Lisbon and studied humanities at the Irish college there. On 22 July 1592 he was received into the Jesuit noviciate at Coimbra. After completing his noviceship at Coimbra, he studied philosophy at Monterey in Spain (1595–8) and theology at Salamanca. Highly regarded by his superiors, he was ordained in 1600 at Salamanca and was preacher and confessor there (1600–08). From 1605 he was often acting rector of the college, as the rectors were frequently absent raising funds. Conway also went on fund-raising missions for the college and became close to influential figures at the royal court and elsewhere. His skill at tapping wealthy benefactors for money facilitated his appointment as rector of the Irish college at Salamanca on 6 May 1608.

By 1608 Conway had been made procurator of the Irish mission. This was an important but burdensome office, which involved variously arranging correspondence between the Jesuits in Ireland and Rome, providing travel expenses for Jesuit novices studying abroad, advising Irish exiles who went to Spain, and promoting the interests of the Irish seminaries at the royal court in Madrid. Further, in the years following the conclusion of the Nine Years War in Ireland in 1603, large numbers of Irish refugees began arriving in Spain, and Conway was heavily involved in providing for them. As a result of these administrative responsibilities, from 1608 he resided for part of each year at Madrid.

Despite his heavy workload, Conway kept in contact with his former pupils who had joined the Irish mission. Their dispatches from Ireland had left him keenly aware of the dangers that faced the catholic clergy there. In 1611 he began writing a book outlining the persecution suffered by Irish catholics at the hands of English protestants. However, his superiors dissuaded him from completing this work, for fear that it would anger the English government.

In 1611–13 he was heavily involved in negotiating the transfer to the Irish Jesuits of the Irish college at Salamanca, which had previously taught both the laity and candidates for the priesthood. The Jesuits intended to use the college exclusively to train priests, but this was strongly opposed by the existing students. In July 1613 Conway took possession of the college and informed all students there that they would be expected to become priests. Many students refused to accept this and were expelled. In 1614 the powerful exiled Irish catholic nobleman Domhnall O'Sullivan Beare (qv) protested at Conway's conduct, but his superiors stood by his actions and he remained rector at Salamanca until 1618. As before, he proved hugely successful at raising funds to maintain the college, which was soon able to support twenty-five students.

In 1618 he resigned his rectorship and moved to Madrid, where he focused on raising money for the Irish colleges in Spain and for the Jesuit mission in Ireland. However, in 1619 he was made rector of the Irish college at Seville. The college was in a miserable condition, but his ability to raise money brought about a rapid improvement. Such was his success that complaints were directed against him for depriving other Jesuit houses in the city of charity. In late 1623 he was replaced as rector in Seville and went to Madrid to resume his role as procurator. He returned to Seville to become rector again in late 1625 and died there 1 December 1626.

John McErlean, ‘Richard Conway S.J.’, Irish Monthly, no. 51 (1923); Francis Finegan, ‘Irish rectors at Seville, 1619–1687’, IER, 5th ser., cvi (July–Dec. 1966), 45–63

◆ James B Stephenson SJ The Irish Jesuits Vol 1 1962

(Abbreviated from the account published by Fr. John Mac Erlean, S.J. in the IRISH MONTHLY, 1923-24)

The preservation of the Catholic Faith in Ireland during three centuries of brutal persecution was largely due to the colleges and seminaries which patriotic Catholic Irishmen founded in several countries of Europe for the instruction of Irish youths and the education of Irish priests. Such signal service to the cause of God and Fatherland deserves to be remembered with everlasting gratitude. Their work was crowned with success. The most deadly efforts of the persecutors were gloriously defeated. One strange effect, however, of the long continuance of the persecution has been that the lives and works of those who commenced and carried on its triumphal resistance have been forgotten by those who even now are enjoying the fruits of their self-denying labours. To rescue their memory from oblivion is a pious and patriotic task.

Three Irish Jesuits stand out prominently as founders of Irish colleges in the Spanish peninsula: Fr John Howling, of Wexford, founder of the Irish College of Lisbon in 1590; Fr Thomas White, of Clonmel, founder of the Irish College of Salamanca in 1592; and Fr Richard Conway, of New Ross, who with Fr, Thomas White founded the Irish College of Santiago de Compostella in 1613, and that of Seville in 1619. Sketches of the careers of Fr. Flowling and Fr White were published by the late Fr. Edmund Hogan, S.J. in his Distinguished Irishmen of the Sixteenth Century (London, 1094). Fr. Conway is mentioned frequently by the Rev, William McDonald, then Rector of the Irish College of Salamanca, in his articles entitled Irish Colleges Since the Reformation, published in the Irish Ecclesiastical Record in 1873, but a consecutive account of his career is well worth attempting for the light it throws upon the ecclesiastical history of the times.

The Conways were one of the leading families of New Ross in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The head of the family in the middle of the sixteenth century was Patrick Conway, who died in 1587, He married a Miss White, by whom he had two sons, George and Richard. Richard, the future Jesuit, was born at New Ross in 1572 or 1573. There is not much to record of his childhood or early years. He left Ireland for Spain when about sixteen or seventeen years of age, but, young as he was when he left his native land, he did not leave without personal experience of England's methods in Ireland, for his mother's house was raided on a forged warrant “to seize upon chalices, money and other things ... in respect of priests and Jesuits that were there harboured to say Masses”. In a note written in 1612 he sets forth clearly the reasons that forced him to seek abroad the education denied him at home. He says: “The greatest injury the English heretics have done, and one which has had the most serious consequences, has been the prohibition of all Catholic schools in our nation, naturally so inclined to learning, except an odd infant school in the principal cities and towns where reading, writing, and a little grammar are taught. Their object was to sink our people to degradation, or fill the universities of England with the children of those who had any means to educate them, where they might become more dependent on heretics and contaminated with their errors. They have also taken singular care that all children be taught English, and chastise them if they hear then speak their own native language. But all the efforts of these crafty heretics do not produce the desired effect. The natives not only did not go to England, but preferred rather to remain in ignorance than run the risk of their faith and religion by doing so, or they went secretly and quietly to many foreign parts, but particularly to Spain”.

It was in the year 1590, seemingly, that Richard Conway landed at Lisbon. There he met many other Irish students, who had come abroad for the same purpose, and whose interests and welfare were the object of the solicitous care of the Wexford Jesuit, Fr John Howling, then resident at the Jesuit house of S Roque, in that city. Fr Howling was at that very time engaged in founding a college for these Irish students, which was opened soon after'. During the next two years, 1590-1592, Richard Conway remained in the Irish College, studying humanities or classics. Then, as a Spanish writer says, “feeling that the end he had in view, the preservation of the faith and the conversion of heretics in Ireland, could be attained with greater security and perfection in a Religious Order, he offered himself to the Society of Jesus, and was received into it”. He entered the Novitiate of Coimbra on July 22nd, 1592.

After completing his two years! noviceship at Coimbra, and taking his vows as. a scholastic on August 20th, 15941, he was sent in the following year to the College of Monterrey in Spain, where he devoted himself to the study of philosophy for the next three years, 1595-1598, During this time he won the highest praise from the authorities of the College for his intellectual gifts, his prudence and skill in the management of affairs, and his progress in philosophy. He is described as being of gentle disposition, and even at this early date is said to be one who would be an excellent labourer in the vine yard of the Lord, and be suited for the office of Superior of his nation.

From Monterrey he passed, in 1598, to the Royal College of Salamanca, where he studied theology for the next four years, 1598-1562, though not without interruption, for, as our Spanish authority says: “The Superiors recognising his remarkable talent for looking after those of his nation, and the holy zeal that he had for their welfare, took him from his studies before he had completed them to employ him in this work, whereupon he began to aid the Irish seminaries”. The Irish Seminary, or College of Salamanca, founded by Fr Thomas White, had been put under the care of the Society of Jesus by King Philip, in 1592, in answer to a petition presented by the Irish gentlemen at the Spanish Court. From 1592 onwards, Fr White and Fr James Archer were in charge of it. As they were often absent on missionary labours, or seeking aims for the support of the College, the duty of loo!:ing after the Irish students devolved on Fr Richard Conway, especially after his ordination as priest in 1600, and though he had still to do two years of his theological course, he acted from time to time as Vice-Rector.

Thus began Fr Conway's work on behalf of the Irish seminaries. He was stationed at Salamanca as preacher and confessor from 1600 to 1608, and often acted as Vice-Rector, he had full charge of the Seminary of Salamanca as Rector from 1608 to 1613, then of that of Santiago, 1613-1618. In 1619 he became Rector of the newly-founded Irish College of Seville, a position he held until 1622, and to which he was again appointed in 1625, and which he continued to hold till his death in 1626. Nor did this exhaust his labours. During these same years he acted as Prefect of all the Irish colleges in Spain, and as Procurator of the Irish Mission, in which capacity he was called to attend to the financial and other affairs of the Irish Mission in countries so far apart as Rome, Germany, Spain, Flanders, France, and Ireland,

When first he took up these multifarious duties it was a time of extraordinary difficulty. The victory of the English arms in Ireland in 1603 not only cut off all hope of receiving alms from Ireland, such as Fr James Archer had collected for the colleges in 1596, but threw upon the shores of Spain in the succeeding years destitute crowds of Irish men, women, and children, fleeing in ever-increasing numbers from the cruelty of the English, while continuing the main work of providing for the necessities of the colleges, Fr Conway strove hard to relieve the distress of these helpless refugees. Of the religious and scholastic fervour of the Irish Seminary of Salamanca in these years the Annual Letters of the Province of Castile for the year 1604 bear : striking testimony. There were then four Jesuits living in the College, filling the offices of Rector, Confessor, Professor, and Spiritual Director respectively. The students numbered twenty-two, of whom eight were studying theology and four philosophy. Eight students had entered the Society of Jesus, and four had entered other Religious Orders. All students made a week's retreat, some even made two weeks, and all were assiduous in religious practices. The Bishop, the Magister Scholae, and other Doctors testified in laudatory terns to the doctrine, conduct, and training of the students.

But, meanwhile, those to whom was due whatever provision for Irish students existed were subject to a new and unexpected trial. The administration of the Irish Colleges was bitterly and unreasonably assailed. These institutions were so necessary, and the good they were doing for the preservation of the faith in Ireland was so striking, that some well-meaning persons forgot, no doubt unconsciously, the ceaseless efforts required to procure for them the limited and uncertain resources which they possessed; but the bitterest critics were those who had done nothing towards the founding of the Colleges, and had never contributed a penny towards their support. The history of the two centuries that followed offers many examples of similar attacks on the administration of the Irish Colleges in Spain and Rome. The motives in the main were provincial animosities, suspicions of partiality, and the interference of ill affected outsiders, who for their own ends fomented dissensions and encouraged insubordination within the college walls.

This agitation was begun in 1602, when a memorial against the continuance of the Irish Fathers of the Society af Jesus in control of the Seminary of Salamanca, drawn up in the names of O'Donnell and O'Neill, was presented to King Philip III, and demanded: (1.) that half the students of the Seminary should be selected from Ulster and Connaught; (2) that Fr Thomas White should be removed from the rectorship as being one who could not be trusted to carry out such a selection, or who would ill-treat those students whom he would be forced to receive; and (3) that a Spaniard, who would see to the punctual execution of this decree, should be appointed Rector.

The plot was skilfully conceived and vigorously carried out. The malcontents dared not go so far as to demand that the seminaries should be handed over to themselves, but yet they hoped by appealing to Spanish prejudices to oust the Irish Jesuits. The controversy continued for more than two years, memorials and replies alternating. In defence of the Irish Jesuits, the Irish nobles and gentlemen residing in Valladolid refuted the accusations and defended the existing administration; the Provincial of Castile denied that there was any preference against Northern students; the Bishop of the place testified to the good conduct of the students and the discipline observed in the government, and said he had never heard any complaints of the rule of the Irish Fathers. Finally, the Rector of the Royal College, to whose supervision the Irish College was subject, declared that all the charges made by the memoralists were false and wholly destitute of foundation.

In spite of these testimonies in favour of the Irish Fathers, the government of the Irish College was by order of the King taken from then and a Spanish Jesuit was appointed Rector. This royal order remained in force for only three years, 1605-1608. The arrangement was found by experience to be unsatisfactory both for the finances and the discipline of the College, Indeed, it would have proved ruinous to the College had not Fr William Bathe, Fr Richard Conway, and, later, also Fr Janes Comerton, who dwelt in it as confessors and preachers, exerted all their influence to keep things quiet, and in general to promote the interests of the College.

The efforts of the Irish Fathers to help the Irish students in the midst of numerous difficulties were fully appreciated by the Jesuit General, Fr Claudius Aquaviva, who on April 3rd, 1607, complimented Fr Conway on what he was doing for them. But the state of affairs brought about by the royal interference rendered all efforts well nigh futile. Soon the General came to see that if the Seminary was to do efficient work it would have to be committed to the charge of the Irish Fathers, and wrote to this effect to the Spanish Provincial on July 24th, , 1607. The Spanish Rectors themselves readily admitted their unsuitability for the position, and the last of the three who held office during those three years appealed to the Provincial to appoint Irish Rectors in future. Finally the King was requested to revoke his former order, which he did on March 24th, 1608. Fr Richard Convay was chosen as the person most fitted to take on the government of the College, and he entered upon his office as Rector on May 6th of the same year.

During the time of the Spanish Rectors, as well as during the whole of his subsequent career, Fr Conway continued his activity on behalf of the Irish students and refugees. In a contemporary account we read that he often went to the Court and other places to seek alms for the support of his seminarists and by his zeal, pleasant manners, and exemplary life succeeded in getting large contributions for their relief, many other students and priests, for whom the Seminaries had no room, he assisted by giving them enough to enable then to pursue their studies in Salamanca, Alcala, Valladolid, Granada, and Cordova. His zeal did not confine itself to students, ecclesiastical or lay, but extended itself to relieving a large number of Irish girls who fled from Ireland for religion's sake to Spain. He sought alms for them all, and settled them in good positions. Some entered convents, while for others he begged dowries, and left then honourably and virtuously married. In the matter of getting alms, he was greatly helped by the fact that he had easy access to the houses of the highest gentlemen at the Court, including even the King and Queen, and the Prelates and Chapters, all of thom he won over by his good example and by his conversation. Thile seeking to relieve the material necessities of his countrymen, he did not neglect their spiritual needs. He preached not only to his seminarists, but also to externs, gave them the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, and sought their society only to win them and improve them spiritually.

His interest in the students did not cease when they left college, He followed then with paternal anxiety, and supported them by his advice when they had returned to their dangerous mission, and they on their part kept up a filial correspondence with him. Their letters shout the spirit with which they faced the danger's that surrounded them. The Rev Eugene O'Brien wrote to Fr Conway from Galway on September 30th, 1606, to tell him of the efforts made to take him when the persecutors found that he was an alumnus of the Spanish College. From Waterford the Rev John Wadding wrote in October of the same year, praising the constancy of the Mayor and Councillors of that city, several of whom had been taken prisoners by the heretics. Another former student, Rev Luke Bennett, a relative of his own, writing from Dunmore, in Leinster, in April, 1607, describes the persecution in his native New Ross, and tells how the faith is preserved in the district by the ministrations or four other priests from the Slamanca College, The Licentiate, Thomas Wise, who had gone from Salamanca to Rome, wrote to Fr Conway in June, 1607, telling hin of the barbarous cruelties inflicted on another former pupil. Thady Dimiran, because he refused to abjure the faith.

In 1611 the General wished Fr Conway to go to Rome and assist him with his advice in matters concerning the Irish Mission; but he yielded to representations made by Fr Thomas White and others, who explained how much his services were required in Spain.

In the year 1610 the Irish College of Salamanca was the recipient of several privileges and favours, A new building was presented to the Irish by the States of Castile, etc. A slab was placed over the door to commemorate the event. A new title, Colegio de Nobles Irlandeses (College of Irish Nobles), was given to the new establishment, which was formally made a royal college, and placed under the protection of the Kind, and, in addition to the ordinary annual alms given by the King to the College, Philip III undertook to pay every student his travelling expenses back to Ireland on the completion of his studies. These grants, largely due to Fr Conway's intercession, secured the future of the College.

But the government of the College, the begging of alms for its support, the solicitation of royal favours, did not exhaust the activities of Fr. Conway. Whilst engaged in these absorbing occupations, he compiled a work on English tyranny in Ireland, the publication of which was stopped lest the irritation of the King of England might endanger the lives of the Jesuits in Ireland and England and lead to a more violent persecution of the Catholic priests and laity in these countries. Whether the book was ever completed or not is not known, but certain short tracts, which may have been intended to form chapters of the complete work, have been preserved. Among these, his treatise on Irish saints marks him out as one of the pioneers of Irish hagiography.

During the last two years of Fr Conway's rectorship at Salamanca he was much occupied with the negotiations that transferred the Irish College at Santiago de Compostella to the care of the Irish Fathers or the Society of Jesus in Spain. This College had been founded in the year 1605 by the King of Spain, at a time when thousands of Irish exiles fled to that country to escape the persecution of the English heretics. £100 per annun was granted to the students by the King, and the Rev Eugene MacCarthy, a secular priest, was appointed Rector of the College. This arrangement did not work satisfactorily, and Philip III determined to entrust it to the Irish Fathers. He wrote to this effect to the Provincial of Castile, Fr Gaspar de Vegas, and the Governor of Galicia, D Luis Henriquez. Owing to the straitened circumstances of the Province of Castile the Provincial hesitated about accepting the additional burden. Fr Conway forwarded to the General a statement of the case, giving the reasons for and against acceptance. The General in his reply favoured acceptance. Meanwhile Fr Eugene MacCarthy undertook the defence of the existing arrangement, and in a letter to the Provincial accused the Irish Fathers of being actuated by motives of ambition and self-interest in attempting to capture the College. Fr William White, SJ, had no difficulty in refuting these charges; the Provincial's opposition weakened, and in April, 1613, the question was finally settled by an express order to the Provincial from the Duke de Lerma, on the part of the King, for the Fathers to take charge of the College.

In consequence of this order, Frs Thomas White, William White, and Richard Conway sent to Santiago and took possession of the College, and on the 16th July the General wrote to the Provincial to order Fr Conway to take up the government of the Seminary of Santiago.

Fr Conway occupied the position of Rector from 1613 to 1618, though his other office of Procurator of the Irish Mission often compelled him to be in Madrid, especially towards the end of his term. He threw llimself with characteristic energy into the work of establishing and developing the new Seminary. The royal allowance of £100 per annum sufficed for the support of a small number of students, but by alms which he succeeded in obtaining from the clergy and the faithful he was able to maintain as many as twenty-five. He drew up plans for linking up the Seminaries of Salamanca, Santiago, and Lisbon, to prevent overlapping, by having humanities taught in one, philosophy in another, and theology in the third. He looked after the spiritual interests of the Irish in Santiago, and as many of them were soldiers from France and the Low Countries, he arranged for the sending of Irish Jesuits who understood French and Flemish to minister to them. Another favourite idea of his was to unite the two Colleges of Salamanca and Santiago at the latter place. This would have economised on the staff and would have been beneficial to the health of the students; but no change was made.

Some disagreements and disputes arose during these years between O'Sullivan Beare and Fr Contay. In 1614 the former complained to the General of the expulsion of certain students from the Seminary, which, he said, had been established by the royal bounty, and with his consent transferred to the Society of Jesus. After full examination, however, Fr Conway's action was approved by his Superiors. Another complaint was in respect of a house granted him by the King, of which he had been deprived by Fr Conway. This dispute was brought into the courts, and the claim of O'Sullivan Beare was upheld. It was a curious example of a double grant. In the decree of the Royal Camera, dated 29th July, 1617, it is said that the Camera, when it granted the house in question to the Seminary, was not aware that a grant had previously been made of the same house to O'Sullivan Beare, and that consequently the house was adjudged to him. There is no imputation against the good faith of Fr Conway in this law suit,

During the progress of the case, O'Sullivan Beare petitioned the King to have the former semi-laical character of the College of Santiago continued, maintaining that there was greater need of Catholic gentlenen in Ireland than of priests. Fr Conway resisted this interference, and his action received the approval of the General, Fr. Mutius Vitelleschi, who succeeded Fr Aquaviva on the latter's death in 1615. In April, 1618, on the appointment of Fr James Comerfort as Rector of Santiago, Fr Conway was left free to act as Procurator of the Irish Mission in Madrid. He had been carrying on the duties of this position since 1608, and had to deal with many important matters concerning the welfare of the Irish seminaries in Spain. Between 1613 and 1624 he carried on a good deal of correspondence about what is termed “the Sicilian money” - a legacy of the late Queen, amounting to between 6,000 and 7,000 ducats, half of which was to be invested for the support of the Mission. The exhausted state of the Sicilian treasury caused the payment of this sum to be deferred, and finally all hope of receiving it was abandoned.

Another important affair entrusted to the care of Fr Conway was that of the pension of Archbishop David Kearney, of Cashel. As the Archbishop was for many years at the beginning of the seventeenth century the mainstay of ecclesiastical organisation in Ireland, Philip III of Spain, in order to enable him to promote the interests of the Church, assigned to hin a pension of 2,000 ducats on the Bishopric of Cadiz. With the approval oi the General, the Archbishop in 1611 appointed Fr Conway his agent to conduct the necessary negotiations. These negotiations continued until the Archbishop's death in 1621, and the subsequent arrangements to carry out the disposal of the money in accordance with his wishes, and to resist the claims of the English and Scotch Colleges in Spain, occupied the attention of Fr Conway till his death, two years later, and dragged on for four years after that time.

In 1619 Fr. Conway vas recalled from Madrid, and sent to take up the position of Rector of the Irish College of Seville, which in that year was handed over to the Irish Jesuits. Eight years previously the General had been asked by Don Felix de Guzman, a Sevillian nobleman, Archdeacon and Canon, to undertake the management of such a college, but the General was unwilling to do so, as an English College already existed in the same city, and he wrote to that effect to Fr Conway, who as then in Lisbon, on December 6th, 1622. In the following year the Apostolic Nuncio in Spain gave leave for the collecting of alms for the Irish students of Seville, but again in this year, and in the two succeeding years, the General expressed his unwillingness to have the Society associated with the projected College.

The College was duly opened, and for the next few years was governed by a succession of secular priests, of whom the first two were Irish and the next four Spaniards. As the numerous changes indicate, the arrangement did not prove satisfactory, and Don Felix de Guzman and Don Geronimo de Medina Ferragut renewed their exertions to induce the Jesuits to take over the government of the College. Don Felix offered to support the Fathers sent, and Don Geronimo offered to make over the house which the students occupied, on the sole condition that the College should be called the College of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mother of God and of the Holy Catholic Faith, which name it retained ever afterwards. Fr Conway was now in favour of the Society taking over the College, and the King wrote expressing his desire that this should be done. In April, 1619, the Provincial and his Consultors agreed to accept, notwithstanding the grave difficulties which presented themselves, and this decision was approved by the General on June 19th. On the same day he wrote to Fr Richard Conway telling him to proceed to Seville to take charge of the new College.

The Society took possession of the College on August 20th, 1619. Fr Conway and Fr Michael de Morales (Cantuell) drew up an inventory of its goods and a list of the students. The effects left by the preceding administration were valued at only £12, and several large debts had been incurred which had to be paid afterwards. Fr Conway mentions the names of six students. The names of six others are known, and another account says that there were in all fifteen.

In view of the necessities of the Irish Seminary of Seville, the Holy See on September 9th, 1619, granted, in answer to a petition of Fr Conway, permission to the fishernien of Andalusia to fish on șix Sundays and holidays in the year, on the understanding that “the fruit of their toil should be given freely and without condition to the Irish College of Seville for the support of the Rector and students and persons employed in their services”.

To raise funds for the Irish Seminaries, all of which, but especially that of Seville, were in great need, Fr Conway proposed that some Irish Fathers should be sent from Spain to the Indies, that is, to Mexico and South America, with a view to collecting alms. When that proposal was not favourably entertained, he begged the General to write to the Provincials of the Indies to ask then to do whatever they could, and he suggested that the Provincial of Mexico should be requested to set aside Fr Michael Godinez (Wadding) for that work. The first part of the proposal was agreed to, but what the ultimate success of the project was we do not know.

During the years 1622-1623 complaints were made to the General of the way in which Fr Conway was running the College. The matters complained of were not of serious import. He is said to have admitted more students than the revenues of the institution could support, and to have allowed confessions to be heard in the church of the Seminary instead of sending the penitents to the Casa Professa, according to the regulations already laid down. Another complaint was that “the students of the Irish College went one day during the summer months in their collegiate gowns to bathe in the river, and returned home two hours after nightfall”. The real reason underlying all the complaints were seemingly Fr Conway's zeal in collecting alms, and new regulations were made with regard to requesting support for the College in the city. Fr Conway's alms-questing was not without some exciting experiences, for at least on one occasion, when going along the road for this purpose, he was set upon by robbers, who deprived him of everything he had, beat hin severely, and left him with his hands tied at the foot of an olive tree, where he lay for some time before he was able to free himself and make his way to a neighbouring village.

Towards the end of the year 1623, Fr Luis Ramirez was appointed Rector of the Irish College of Seville, and Fr Conway returned to his forner office of Procurator of the Irish Mission at the court of Madrid. On the 22nd December of that year he laid before the General a new plan for increasing the provision made for the education of the Irish secular clergy. This was to petition the Holy See to allow the Chapters of the Churches of Spain to receive tho Irish students each for the Irish Missions into the seminaries founded by order of the Council of Trent, notwithstanding the decree of that Council that the seminarists should be natives of the dioceses. The General deferred the consideration of this suggestion until the approval of the Chapters should have been obtained.

Another prospect for the development of colleges for the Irish secular clergy opened when towards the end of 1623 the Grand Prior of England of the Order of St. John set aside 2,000 ducats as a beginning of a foundation of an Irish College in Rome. Fr Conway was directed to forward the sum to Rome, so that it might be used to buy a site or be allowed to lie at interest until there would be enough for the end intended. In the following year, 1625, the General announced to him that the foundation of an Irish Seminary in Rome by Cardinal Ludovisi was taking shape slowly, but that it was not known when it would be put into execution.

On June 2nd, 1624, Fr Conway informed the General that the King and Council, recognising that the Irish Seminary at Douay was not being well administered by those who had charge of it, wished to entrust it to the Society. In reply, the General told him that, if the matter was as represented, the King and Council would be sure to give some sign of their desire, but that meanwhile he was not to speak about the subject or try in any way to have the Seminary entrusted to the Society. Similarly, when he announced in the following year the foundation of a new Irish Seminary at Alcala, he was told to have nothing to do with it: “Better improve those of Salamanca, Seville, and Santiago, so that they may be able to support more alunni”.

In 1624 he appealed to the Catholic King to recommend the needs of the Irish students to the bishops of Spain, and in a letter dated St Laurence (the Escorial), 31st October, 1624, King Philip III wrote recommending them to the Bishop of Zamora, as he had already recommended then, he says, to the prelates of Seville and Jaen.

Meanwhile affairs were not proceeding well in the Irish Seminary of Seville, Before a year elapsed Fr Ramirez asked to be relieved of the rectorate. The Spanish Fathers were not able to manage the Irish students. On the 7th July, 1625, Fr. Conway was ordered to proceed to Seville and take charge of the Seminary, as soon as he had settled up his affairs in Madrid; but it was not until Christmas that he arrived in Seville, and entered upon his duties as Rector of the Seminary for the second time. Under his management the disorders ceased, and he was congratulated on the zeal with which he looked after the interests of the College.

In January of the following year, 1626, the Seminary suffered great loss from the overflowing of the river. A good part of the building collapsed, and Fr Conway's efforts for the welfare of his students won considerable praise. He found accommodation for them in different places, but remained on in the house himself, and when he had collected what was necessary for their support he carried the food to them every day on foot. A few months later, in August, 1626, he became seriously ill, and he died on the lst of December, after having received the last Sacraments.

In this sketch of Fr. Conway's life and work little has been said of his spiritual life. From the difficulties he overcame and the greatness of the work he accomplished it has been possible, no doubt, to form some idea of those interior forces which supernaturalised his external activities, but there is abundant testimony given by those who lived with him to his religious virtue and holy life. Especially remarkable was his constancy in prayer. As the hours of the day did not suffice for his many devotional exercises, he devoted to them a large part of the night. We are told, that, though it was generally twelve or one o'clock when he retired to rest, he rose before four in the morning. His spiritual note-books, which reveal the daily life of his soul, contain so many prayers and devotions, distributed by days, weeks, months, and years, that it would seen he had nothing else to do. His fasts and other mortifications were also noticed by his contemporaries. He slept three nights a week on the ground; he fasted every Saturday, and each day he gave a large part of his food to the poor. He wore clothes cast off by others, and at his death the only thing that he seems to have possessed was a small cross, half broken. As a final example of his spirit of detachment and abnegation may be mentioned the fact that, although for many years he had leave from his Superiors' to return to his native land, he never made use of it, lest by doing so he might neglect the Irish exiles abroad.

Fr Conway was not only a devoted son of the Catholic Church, but a great lover of Ireland. In the heat of controversy O’Sullivan Beare spoke of him as Anglo-Irish. Geoffrey Keating was accused of being the same, and his reply to the accusation might have been penned by Fr Richard Conway. For Fr Conway spoke the Irish language, and was as familiar with Irish history and tradiions as any O'Sullivan. By his words and writings he revived the name and fame of Ireland on the Continent. It was through him, as far as we can discover that the Codex Salmanticensis, from which Fr. John Colgan, OSF, and the Bollandists derive so much of their knowledge of Ireland's early saints, came into possession of the Irish College of Salamanca, and was thus preserved for future ages. The seminaries he founded frustrated the British plan of perverting Ireland through enforced ignorance.

To Salamanca, the first of the seminaries which lie ruled, he transmitted that tradition of learning and love of Ireland which such men as Fr Paul Sherlock and Fr Peter Reade afterwards handed on. Ireland may well be proud of him, and so may the Society of Jesus. At a time when the memory of the canonisation of St Ignatius and St Francis Xavier was still fresh in Spain, a Spanish contemporary does not hesitate to compare him with both these illustrious saints : “Fr Richard Conway”, he says, “was one of the true sons of our glorious Father, St Ignatius, and a true imitator of that zeal for souls that consumed the heart of the glorious Father, St Francis Xavier, on the eve of whose feast he was called to his reward by God, leaving to us who remain after him his exemplary life for our initiation and consolation”.

John MacErlean SJ

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Richard Conway 1572-1626
Fr Richard Conway, together with Fr John Houling and Fr Thomas White, may be reckoned as one of the Saviours of the Faith in Ireland. This claim is based on his work of founding and maintaining Irish Colleges, mainly in Spain and Portugal, by means of which a steady flow of secular priests, Jesuits and educated Irish gentlemen was poured into the country, when all means of higher education had been eeradicated by the English authorities

Richard Conway was born in New Ross in 1572, and he sought the education, deniend him at home, in Lisbon, at the age of sixteen or seventeen. There he met Fr John Howling, and under his aegis became a Jesuit at Coimbra in 1592. Thenceforward, his whole life was dedicated to the education andservice of trhe countless Irish refugees flybing from persecution at home. He founded the Colleges of Santiago and Seville, and by a lifetime questing alms and wisely governing various Irish Colleges, fought the good fight, which prompted Fr MacErlean to say of him “Ireland may well be proud of him, and so may the Society of Jesus”.

Some time before his death, while collecting alms, he was waylaid by robbers and deprived of everything he possessed.He was neated severely, and he was left with his hands toed to the bottom of an olive tree. He cried aloud for help but noone came. He invoked Our Lady and his Guardian Angel, whereupon his bonds were loosened, and he made his way to a nearby town.

On his death bed, December 1st 1626, before he closed his eyes forever, Christ Our Lord appeared to him, and as a foretaste of the glorious reward in store for him, led him unto a charming region, where he beheld strange and secret sights.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
CONWAY, RICHARD. I learn from two letters of Dr. David Kearny, Archbishop of Cashell, of the 15th of July, 1616. and the 30th ot September, 1616, that this confidential Agent was actively employed In Spain in his Grace s service. The Father was at Madrid in October, 1624.

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

“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”.

Cullen, John, 1814-1885, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1137
  • Person
  • 01 March 1814-03 November 1885

Born: 01 March 1814, Tintern, County Wexford
Entered: 12 February 1853, St John’s, Fordham, NY, USA - Franciae Province (FRA)
Professed: 15 August 1863
Died: 03 November 1885, St Peter's College, Jersey City, NJ, USA - Marylandiae Neo-Eboracensis Province (MARNEB)

Devereux, Alexander, 1657-1694, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1182
  • Person
  • 1657-12 July 1694

Born: 1657, Fannystown, Duncormick, County Wexford
Entered: 11 June 1681, Coimbra, Portugal - Lusitaniae Province (LUS)
Ordained: c.1693, Coimbra, Portugal
Died: 12 July 1694, Porto, Portugal - Lusitaniae Province (LUS)

Alias Wareus

1693 Minister of Irish College Lisbon and working in Theology - Vereus was said to be Minister there in 1700

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Lived in Portugal and had been a merchant. Converted to religious life by seeing the ravage done by lightening. He was a pious, angelic, and affable Priest. (Franco)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Had done studies at Coimbra before Ent 11 June 1681 in the same city
After First Vows he continued his studies at Coimbra and was Ordained there by 1693, though his health was poor.
1693 At the Irish College Lisbon as Minister, though still engaged in studies.
He was in delicate health and died 12 July 1694.

Dobbyns, Henry, d 1828, Jesuit novice

  • IE IJA J/1191
  • Person
  • d 04 April 1828

Born: County Wexford
Entered: United States of America Province (USA)
Died: 04 April 1828, St Inigo’s, Maryland, USA

Dowdall, Gregory, 1612-1650, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1206
  • Person
  • 1612-09 August 1650

Born: 1612, Dublin
Entered: 19 March 1633, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Ordained: 1638, Douai, France
Died: 09 August 1650, New Ross Residence - described as a “Martyr of Charity”

1633 Is at Douai
1638 Studying Theology at Douai
1650 Died in service of and stricken by the plague

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1640 Came to Irish Mission
He died a Martyr of Charity in his service to the plague stricken of New Ross.
He was the only Priest left in New Ross when it was taken by Cromwellian (Parliamentary) Rebels. He went in many disguises and was a holy and humble man. Five others had remained in Waterford, two of whom were Priests - George Dillon and James Walshe. (Report of Irish Mission 1641-1650, by Mercure Verdier, Visitor, to Fr General - a copy at English College Rome) (cf Foley’s Collectanea)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Had already completed Philosophy at Douai before Ent 19 March 1633 Rome
1635-1639 After First Vows he was sent back to Douai for Theology due to ill health and was Ordained there in 1638
1640 Sent to Ireland and to New Ross. He was Minister at the Residence at the time of Mercure Verdier’s Visitation, and he reported favourably on him in his Report of 1649 to the General.
1649 At the capture of New Ross by the Puritans Gregory was the only Priest left in the town, and he spent his time bringing consolation to the plague-stricken up to his death there 09 August 1650
He is described as a “Martyr of Charity”

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Gregory Dowdall 1614-1650
At New Ross on August 9th 1650 died Fr Gregory Dowdall, a victim of charity in the service of the sick. During the siege of the city by Cromwell, he was a source of great comfort and strength to the citizens. When the city was finally captured, he was the only priest left at his post, ensuring the ravages of the plague which inevitably followed, he devoted himself single-handedly to the sick and the dying. Disguised as a gardener selling fruit and vegetables, he eluded the vigilance of the Puritans, and thus was enabled to minister to the Catholics.

He himself was struck down by the plague, and assisted by a fellow Jesuit, Fr Stephen Gelous who had been sent from Waterford, he died at the early age of 36, having lived 18 years in the Society.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
DOWDALL, GREGORY. This Father, the model of zeal, humility, and self-denial, during the Siege of Ross, Co. Wexford, was like an angel of comfort to its inhabitants. When the town was taken by the Parliamentary troops, he was the only Priest that remained at his post; and during the ravages of the plague, devoted himself to the service of the sick and infected. Overcome with exertion, he at length took the infection, and fell a victim of charity on the 9th of August, 1650. As soon as the Superior, F. Malone, heard of his illness, he sent F. Stephen Gelosse to his assistance from Waterford, and from his hands the dying Father received all the consolations of Religion and all the attentions of friendship.

Doyle, Denis, 1856-1876, Jesuit scholastic

  • IE IJA J/1212
  • Person
  • 04 September 1856-02 May 1876

Born: 04 September 1856, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 11 November 1873, Milltown, Dublin (HIB for Taurensis Province TAUR)
Died: 02 May 1876, Milltown Park, Dublin - Taurensis Province (TAUR)

Part of the Manresa, Roehampton, England Community at the time of death.

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He died of decline at Milltown the year after First Vows.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Died having returned from Roehampton in consumption

Ealy, Martin, 1830-1897, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1247
  • Person
  • 11 November 1830-09 July 1894

Born: 11 November 1830, Ballinruan, County Wexford
Entered: 24 March 1855, St John’s, Fordham, NY, USA - Franciae Province (FRA)
Professed: 15 August 1865
Died: 09 July 1894, Fordham College, NY, USA - Marylandiae Neo-Eboracensis Province (MARNEB)

Ennis, Aidan D, 1909-2006, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/597
  • Person
  • 15 March 1909-29 April 2006

Born: 15 March 1909, Ballymitty, County Wexford
Entered: 16 September 1926, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1940, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1944, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 29 April 2006, St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin

Part of the St Francis Xavier, Gardiner St, Dublin community at the time of death.

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ
Tertianship at Rathfarnham

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 128 : Special Issue June 2006


Fr Aidan Ennis (1909-2005)

15th March 1909; Born in Ballymitty, Co. Wexford
Early education in Dominican College, Wicklow, and Clongowes
16th Sept. 1926: Entered the Society at Tullabeg
17th Sept. 1928: First Vows at Tullabeg
1928 - 1931: Rathfarnham - Studied Arts in UCD
1931 - 1934: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1934 - 1937: Clongowes - Teacher (Regency)
1937 - 1941: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
31st July 1940: Ordained at Milltown Park
1941 - 1942: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1942 - 1944: Mungret College - Minister
2nd February 1944: Final Vows at Mungret College
1944 - 1945: Milltown Park - Minister
1945 - 1947: St. Francis Xavier, Gardiner St. - Pastoral Ministry
1947 - 1962: Mungret College
1947 - 1955: Farm Manager; Teacher; Lecturer in Philosophy, Confessor
1955 - 1959: Teacher; Lecturer in Philosophy; Spiritual Director
1959 - 1962: Teacher, Lecturer in Philosophy
1962 - 1965: Catholic Workers College - Minister, Lecturer
1965 - 1969: Mungret College - Spiritual Director; Teacher, Lecturer in Philosophy
1969 - 1976: St. Ignatius, Galway
1969 - 1975: Teacher; Ministered in Church;
1975 - 1976: Parish Curate
1976 - 2006: Gardiner Street
1976 - 2002: Ministered in the Church; Gardener
2002 - 2006: Cherryfield Lodge - Prayed for the Church and the Society
29th April 2006: Died peacefully in St. Vincent's Hospital, Dublin,

Fr. Aidan Ennis was admitted to Cherryfield Lodge in January 2002. He was frail and needed nursing care. He remained in reasonably good health for the next four years. His condition began to deteriorate, especially in the final four months.

Proinsias Fionnagáin writes:
Aidan Ennis was born on 15 March 1909 in the parish of Ballymitty, Co. Wexford. His birthplace was an old residence and park a short mile away from the Catholic parish church. French tourists to that district might certainly describe the Ennis property as a gentilhommiere. There were two sons in the family, Patrick John, the elder, and Aidan, and four daughters. The Ennis family is now extinct.

Aidan and his brother were both educated at Clongowes. Aidan entered the Society in 1926 at Tullabeg. When the present writer entered, one year later, he could not fail to notice that Aidan was one of seven Clongownians of the 1926 vintage. His fellow OCs were John Burden (+1974), John MacAvoy (+1983), Gerard Perrott (+1985), Brendan Lawler (+1993) and Michael O'Meara (+1998). Cecil Hayden, a deeply spiritual man, was deemed over-scrupulous by superiors and told to go back to his family's business, HAYDENS' HOTEL, in Ballinasloe. He never returned to Ballinasloe, but became a hotel manager in Dublin and an apostle of devotion to the Holy Rosary. Aidan survived many of his fellow novices and I was the only fellow-novice to be able to attend his funeral.

My only memory of Aidan in the novitiate is of summer 1928, when he seemed to have given himself a special apostolate of encouraging first-year novices like myself to seek permission to make the Vows of Devotion. It was only the Father Provincial who could sanction this act of devotion. So far as I could learn later, only Brother Thomas O'Sullivan was granted the privilege. Both the Father Provincial and the future Father Thomas had been Old Boys of St. Ignatius College, Galway--another proof that blood is thicker than water!

In June 1931, our Major Villa was housed in Castlebellingham Castle, Co. Louth. A first-year junior, Dan Fitzpatrick, destined for the new Vice-Province in Australia, was looking out for a cycling party to visit his mother and grandmother at Omeath, Co Louth. Omeath was the last and soon to be extinct Gaeltacht on the east coast of Ireland. Dan's grandmother was a native Irish speaker of Omeath. Aidan got interested in the prospect of the trip to Omeath, and, as we may be sure, proved a welcome addition to Dan's other companions as well. By some alchemy of fate, conversation with Dan Fitzpatrick's relatives produced some remarkable associations for Aidan. Dan's dead father had been a member of the crew on the Titanic on her tragic maiden voyage to America in April 1912. An aunt of Aidan was the wife of one of the pursers on the doomed ship. The Ennis home in Ballymitty appears in a published work dealing with Irish victims on the ship and the address of this purser. Aidan was pleased when I brought this book to his notice; he was but an infant when this uncle by marriage perished.

Sometime, during my scholastic career, I met Aidan's parents on holidays and I noticed an uncanny resemblance between Aidan and his father. The elder son, Patrick, did not have a like paternal resemblance.

Allow me to record here another name from the Ennis family tree. I had noticed in a book review on the west of Ireland mention of Bishop Patrick Duggan of Clonfert whose massive memorial Celtic Cross is to be seen close by the lasting resting place of the patriot Archbishop of Dublin, William Walsh, and other dignitaries of the archdiocese in Glasnevin cemetery. I was mentioning the book at table when Aidan broke in. “Proinsias”, he said, “you are talking about a kinsman of mine”. Bishop Duggan of Cionfert was born in Belcare, archdiocese of Tuam, in 1813. His family on the distaff side was descended from an old and distinguished stock, the Canavans, and Aidan's mother was an out-cousin of the Duggans of Belcare. She was a Canavan and had handed on to her son, Aidan, the story of her distinguished relative. In August, 1896, Bishop Duggan arrived in Dublin on business with his solicitor. He got ill unexpectedly, was brought to Jervis St. Hospital, and a few days later died on 15 August. That very same evening his remains were transferred to our church and reposed for three days in the Ignatian Chapel. Archbishop Walsh was celebrant of the solemn Mass in the church, in the presence of Cardinal Logue and some three handred priests, diocesan and regular.

When I returned from France in 1981 I was appointed a member of the Diocesan Commission of historians studying the Causes for Beatification of the Irish Martyrs for the faith in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. I did not foresee that the years 1982 to 1992 would be the busiest of all my experience of life in the Society. My status in the community was simply 'assistant in the church'. Aidan had the same status but had a noticeably large following, whether in the church or the Ignatian Chapel. with the Gaelgóirí. His only light reading seemed to me to be the Gaelic poets Piaras Ferriter, Tadg Gaelach Ó Súilleabhain et al. I associate him with our popular pilgrimage to Carraig an Aifrinn, Co. Wicklow...another instance of his lack of physical stamina. His only recreation seemed to be practising golfing shots in the garden when no one was around. He was well into his eighties and still driving the house car. It was the general disapproval of the community that called for his abandonment of the steering wheel. It was felt that he was endangering the lives of himself, Diarmuid Ó Laoghaire, Seamus Mac Amhlaoibh et al., setting off for the annual holidays in Co. Donegal, after passing through the troubled counties of Tyrone and, especially, Fermanagh.

Aidan was not only a devoted assistant in the sanctuary or confessional in the church; he was a devoted trainer of the altar boys and, yes, the boy-scouts.. A new parish priest started to innovate 'in the alleged and mostly unapproved) spirit of Vatican II. He decreed that the boy servers were to be helped out by girly servers. Anybody could predict the result: the boys fled the sanctuary never to return. The boy scouts, too, disappeared over- night. The last boy-scout was an obese child. The recently recruited girl-scouts quickly tired of their social promotion and left to be with the boys. Fr Aidan must have felt deeply distressed by all the changes in the 'spirit of Vatican II'. Much of Aidan's unknown kindnesses could be guessed at from our casual meeting in the streets with persons, poor as well as well-to-do, who asked for Aidan, who was helping them to cope with the inevitable disappointments in life.

When Aidan was well into his eighties he could still deliver an adinirable sermon. I remember the funeral Mass of the last of his sisters. Aidan produced a wise and instructive homily on the subject of death and its appositeness for deepening the faith of the living. Not long after he was invited by Belvedere College to preach at the obsequies of Father Peadar MacSéamus who, just before his last illness, had completed fifty years in the College. On this occasion Aidan excused himself from accepting the invitation to preach - a sure sign of Aidan's declining stamina.

His last two decades amongst us must have been lonely years. One by one, his brother and four sisters quit this valley of tears. One death after another must have been for Aidan an indication that the Ballymitty Eunises were approaching extinction. Eventually, Aidan, sole survivor of the family, was now the heir-at-law of the gentilhommiere in Co. Wexford. And so ended his paternal surname in the old beloved homestead. It is comforting to know that in his closing years in Cherryfield he experienced tender care and affection up to his last and eternal Status.

From the homily by Derek Cassidy at the Funeral Mass in Gardiner Street:
Aidan was born into a Home called "Springwood", and, as the name suggests, it was well supplied with Trees and Bushes and many different coloured shrubs and flowers. Perhaps it is this very early exposure to the seasons of growth, flowering and decaying, that gave Aidan his calm, tranquil and easy going disposition to the happenings of day to day living: whatever, he was a man of considerably even temper

I have selected the readings from Aidan's own copy of the Jerusalem Bible, wherein I discovered some of his notations. I want to finger a moment on that reading from Paul's letter to the Romans, chapter 12, verses 1 & 2. Aidan re-phrased the last sentence slightly, to read “Then you will be able to discern the will of God”. In his praying and reflection on the message of the two verses, Aidan stressed for himself, and from his place now with God, stresses for you and me, God's mercy. When I am fully aware of the quality of mercy that God offers me, when I am ready to live in that awareness, then I can avoid modelling my behaviour on the world around me, and, instead, allow my behaviour to be modelled by my appreciation of God's mercy, and then, and because Aidan underlined for himself this word “then”, I must say, then, and only then, will be able to discern the will of God, and know what is good, what it is that God wants, what is the perfect thing to do.

Over the very many years of his dedicated life in the Jesuits, almost 80 years of commitment, Aidan was very well practiced in the exercise of applying God's mercy. He was infinitely patient - like the Gardener must be whilst waiting for the soil to give birth to the flower. He was tender, kind and compassionate in his Healing Ministry in the Confessional, especially here in St Francis Xavier's Church, where Aidan spent a total of 28 years. He would say himself that he learned much more about life from the people here in Gardiner Street than he was ever able to teach about life! He had a deep affection for the devoted congregation here, and in a way the people of Brendan Behan Court were his Pets!

Fr Aidan also spent some time in Mungret College, Limerick, now closed. I first met bim there, where he taught Philosophy to young men preparing for Priesthood on the Missions. Fr Willie Reynolds told me yesterday that he had been speaking with some of those who knew Fr Aidan from Mungret, and they offer their Prayers of support to us.

The psalm that I selected from Aidan's notes was Ps. 25, with the response “To you, Yahweh, I lift up my soul”. I mentioned that Aidan is 80 years in the Jesuits this year - in September. In those 80 years he lifted up his soul to God each morning and evening, some minimum of 58,400 times!! That is once more a dedication quite similar to what is required of a Gardener: digging and weeding and watering and waiting for the blossom to show. Love, Forgiveness, Mercy: these three qualities are sung of in Ps 25. All three are qualities attributed to God; all three are the qualities that Aidan modelled his life around.

I chose the Gospel of the Ten Lepers from amongst many that Aidan has noted. I chose it mainly because of the plea made by the ten, “Jesus! Master! Take pity on us”. What a very beautiful prayer of regard. I can only imagine that it is a prayer that Aidan himself used frequently. I humbly suggest that Aidan today commends this prayer to you and me. So as we continue with our Prayer of Thanksgiving for Aidan's life and gift to us, we might allow our hearts to accompany him now through our Faith as he enters into the full blossom of Life with the God of his dreams.

Interfuse No 128 : Special Issue June 2006


Thomas MacMahon

A Theme and Three Variations

Who is Sylvia? What is she,
That all our swains commend her?
Holy, fair, and wise is she;
The heaven such grace did lend her.

That she might admired be.

“Two Gentlemen of Verona”
William Shakespeare

Who is Aidan? What is he,
That all S.J.'s commend him?
Hoary hair, grey eyes has he,
The staff such drapes did lend him
That he might attired be.

“One Clergyman of Cherryfield”
Thomas Mac Mahon 1915-present (etc. DV)

Cé hé Aodán? Céard é féin,
Go molann é gac éinne?
Naofa, geal agus eolach é,
An oiread gräs thug Neamh dó,
Le go dtiurfai moladh dó.

“Beirt Duine Uasal ó Bheróna”
Liam Crith-Slea 1564-1616

Quis est Aodan ? quidnam est,
Pagani ut inirentur?
Sanctus, clarus, prudens ille,
Talem gratiam dedit caelum
Ut is mirus haberetur.

“Duo Nobiles Veronenses”
Gulielmus Hastam-Verberans MDLXIV -MDCXVI

Eustace, Oliver, 1605-1671, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1259
  • Person
  • 24 February 1605-12 November 1671

Born: 24 February 1605, County Wexford
Entered: 24 November 1627, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Ordained: 1634, Liège, Belgium
Final Vows: 31 May 1654
Died: 12 November 1671, Dublin Residence

1633 In 3rd year Theology at Liège
1650 CAT ROM Went to Mission 1635, Prof 4 Vows; Superior at Waterford for 8 years and New Ross 1 year. Preacher, Confessor and Director of Sodalities

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
A relative of Dr Walsh Archbishop of Cashel; possible a relative of Oliver Eustace MP for Carlow in 1639;
Studied Humanities and two years Philosophy before Entry, and three years Theology afterwards. He knew Irish, English and Latin. (HIB CAT 1650 - ARSI)
A good Preacher; Superior at Wexford for nine years (pre 1649) and of great influence there as Preacher and Confessor; a good religious and “vir vere optimus”
1634/5 Came to Ireland
1651 Deported to France/Spain, but returned on the restoration of Charles II
1661 In Ireland again
1663 Named in ANG Catalogue as in Third year Theology at Liège
1665 At College of the Holy Apostles in Suffolk, aged c 60, infirm (Foley’s Collectanea, where by a misprint he says that he was alive in 1684)
1671 Died in Dublin “well deserving of the Society, whether as missioner or otherwise” (Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Had studied at Douai before Ent 24 November 1627 Rome
After First Vows he was sent back to Belgium at Liège for Philosophy (1) and Theology (4) studies and was Ordained there c 1634
1634 Sent to Ireland and to Wexford. He worked there until the fall of Wexford to Cromwell 1651/1652 and was Superior of the Wexford Residence before 1649
1651/52-1660 Deported to France, first to Paris and then to Quimper where he conducted Missions among the Irish diaspora at western French and even into Spanish ports
1660 For a while he was stationed with a small Irish community in Brittany but eventually crossed to England and was well received by the ANG Provincial. He spent some time in London district and later in Suffolk.
1666 In poor health he was sent to Ireland living at the Dublin Residence where he eventually died 12 November 1671

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
EUSTACE, OLIVER, was Superior of his Brethren at Wexford in 1649, and is reported then to be “vir vere optimus”. Shortly after he went to Spain; but just before the restoration of Charles the II he returned to his native Country : bad health however, induced him to pass some time in England. I find from the Annual Letters that he died at Dublin in the course of the year 1671, “in Missione et alibi de Societate bene meritus”.

FitzGerald, James B, 1914-2007, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/598
  • Person
  • 26 September 1914-13 August 2007

Born: 26 September 1914, Clonmel, County Tipperary
Entered: 11 September 1933, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1946, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1949, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 13 August 2007, Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Part of the St Francis Xavier, Gardiner St, Dublin community at the time of death.

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 23rd Year No 4 1948

During the summer Frs. Jas. FitzGerald, Kearns and Scallan helped in the campaign organised by Dr. Heenan, Superior of the Mission House, Hampstead, to contact neglected or lapsed Catholics in Oxfordshire. Writing Fr. Provincial in August, the Superior pays a warm tribute to the zeal and devotion of our three missionaries :
“I hope”, he adds, “that the Fathers will have gained some useful experience in return for the great benefit which their apostolic labours conferred on the isolated Catholics of Oxfordshire. It made a great impression on the non-Catholic public that priests came from Ireland and even from America, looking for lost sheep. That fact was more eloquent than any sermon. The Catholic Church is the only hope for this country. Protestantism is dead...?”

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 133 : Special Issue September 2007


Fr James (Jim) FitzGerald (1914-2007)

26th September 1914: Born in Clonmel, Co. Tipperary
Early education at High School, Clonmel, and Clongowes
11th September 1933: Entered the Society at Emo
12th September 1935: First Vows at Emo
1935 - 1937: Rathfarnham – Studied Arts at UCD
1937 - 1940: Tullabeg - Studied Philosophy
1940 - 1943: Belvedere College - Teacher
1943 - 1947: Milltown Park - Studied Theology
31st July 1946: Ordained at Milltown Park
1947 - 1948: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1948 - 1959: Mungret College, Minister, Prefect, Teacher
2nd February 1949: Final Vows at Mungret College
1959 - 1973: Rathfarnham Castle - Minister; Bursar
1973 - 1981: Milltown Park - Minister; Prefect of Health
1981 - 1982: Overseeing building of Cherryfield Lodge
1982 - 1985: Director, Cherryfield Lodge
1985 - 2007: Gardiner Street -
1985 - 1989: Minişter; Health Prefect; Guestmaster
1989 - 1991: Assistant Vice-Postulator cause of John Sullivan SJ; Health Prefect; Guestmaster
1991 - 1997: Assistant Vice-Postulator; Health Prefect
1997 - 2007: Assistant Vice-Postulator
13th August 2007: Died in Cherryfield Lodge, Dublin

Adapted from an interview with Jim in Interfuse #129:

Jim's father was the medical officer in the mental hospital in Clonmel when he was born. They had a very pleasant way of life, very simple, which meant they had their own grounds – marvellous grounds around it - to go through and play. But Jim felt that they were too sheltered and didn't meet enough with the boys that they met at school. He started in Loreto, Clonmel, but the boys were only taken there until the age of 8. Then he went to the Christian Brothers and stayed with them till 1929, when he went to Clongowes, from which he entered the Society four years later.

He heard from the novices in Emo that “the Provincial, Larry Kiernan, was down to see them and he asked them if they knew where one of the new novices was coming from. And then he announced that I was coming from a mental hospital!” And Jim added, “Emo was a very pleasant kind of house to live in”.

His only memories of Rathfarham were recounted as follows: “I tried to show my prowess at the Bird House by jumping a little bit of water that was there with one bound. And, of course, I realised half way through that I couldn't make it. I knocked my knee off the far side, and when I pulled up my trousers I was just pumping blood. When I got back in the Brother fixed me up some way. He should have sent for the doctor”. A fortnight later, when he was sent to the Doctor, he said, “Sorry, I can't do anything with it now. You can't stitch, unless it's done immediately”.

From Rathfarnham he was moved after two years to Tullabeg. “I was thrown out”, he said, “on the results of the second year...I went to Tullabeg. Again it was a very comfortable kind of life”. He was sent to Belvedere after Philosophy. “It was a marvellous house. It was very free and we had a great time there”. He did his three years there and then on to Milltown. After ordination and a final year in Milltown, he went for tertianship in Rathfarnham. Then started his career as Minister for some 40 years in Mungret, Rathfarnham, Milltown, and Gardiner Street. During his time as Minister in Milltown he oversaw the building of Cherryfield Lodge and became its first Director.

Of his move to Milltown as Minister he said: “In Rathfarnham I had Paddy Doyle as Rector at some stage, and when he moved, he said he would like me to come as minister. And I said, ‘No, Father. You'd better give me a bit of time to think that one out’. So he did nothing about it that year. And the next year I was on the status for Milltown and it went quite well. It was a hard house to go to. But I was one of those old fashioned Ministers, who was · supposed to do what the Rector told them. I think that went out after my time. The Minister considered that he was boss in his own line and did what he wanted in his own line”.

As to his assignment to oversee the building of Cherryfield, he commented: “Thinking about it afterwards, it was quite foolish to put somebody in who didn't know what powers he had. I used to wake up at night and wonder had they done such and such. And, very often, I would find out next morning that my worst fears were justified up to a point. Plasterers were so anxious to get the whole job done, that switches and things like that would be covered, there was no sign of a switch. It was a mere matter of locating where it was and then opening it. We had arranged that the doors for the different rooms would be big enough take a bed without any bother, so you could just roll it out the door, twisting it left or right whichever way you wanted it. It was only when the building was complete we found that they hadn't done that. We could do nothing about it”.

In his later years he was appointed Vice Postulator for the cause of Fr. John Sullivan, whom he knew when he was a student in Clongowes. In fact, he died when Jim was there. When asked about his personal devotion to Fr. John, he responded: “Well, I have great admiration for him, but once I put my foot in it in Gardiner Street. Three old ladies stopped me on the corridor one day and said, ‘What about Father Sullivan? Is he going to be made a Saint?’ And I said, ‘Well, pity he wasn't born in Poland!’”

The interview was entitled "Prone to Accidents", so often in his life did he have accidents. But he had no regrets, and ended the interview with the words: “I will never leave here now. Unless, of course, to go to the new Cherryfield, if I last that long. That will be about three years. I doubt if I will last that long”.

A poetic remembrance from Tom MacMahon, 14 August 2007:

Jim and I were novices together -
'Twas in the year of nineteen thirty three;
I'm not altogether certain as to whether
He three or four months older was than me.
Step by step we did the normal studies,
Right 'til we began philosophy;
But he and Dan, those former schoolboy 'buddies',
Skipped a year, and got ahead of me.

Seventy four years on, and still united,
We, the last survivors of our year,
In Cherryfield were, shall we say, 'benighted',
Never thinking death would be so near.

And yet, so quickly, our 'Jim Fitz' was taken -
Quietly and peacefully he went, .
Leaving us two feeling quite forsaken,
Yet grateful for the great life he had spent.

God be with our dear friend, Father Jim.
When our time comes, may we be one with him!

Flynn, John, 1860-1884, Jesuit scholastic

  • IE IJA J/1317
  • Person
  • 04 September 1860-18 August 1884

Born: 04 September 1860, St Louis, MO, USA
Entered: 18 September 1880, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died; 18 August 1884, St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, Australia

Early Irish Australian Mission 1882

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He was raised at both Wexford and St Louis, MO, USA. When he came back to Ireland he received an education at Tullabeg.

Due to health issues he was sent to Australia while still a Novice, and he made his First Vows at Riverview, Sydney. By that stage he knew his recovery was hopeless, but he performed his duties as Second Prefect with all his remaining energy, until a few days before his death. He received the Last Sacraments on August 13th 1884, and his next few days were spent in meditation and prayer. His weakness increased rapidly and he died calmly in his chair on the night of 18/08/1884. A zealous promoter of the Holy Childhood, he had collected five pounds just before he died for the redemption of Chinese children.

Note from Edmund Bohan Entry :
1882 He was sent for Regency to Australia with John Flynn, both being delicate in health.

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
John Flynn spent much of his childhood in the USA. After education at St Stanislaus' College, Tullabeg, he entered the Society at Milltown Park in September 1880. After a year it was discovered he had consumption and was sent to Australia with another novice sufferer, Edmund Bohan, and arrived in December 1882. He went to Riverview where he took vows, but the disease was worse than expected and little could be done. He worked in the school as second division prefect up to a few days before he died.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Born in America of Irish parents (County Wexford)

Furlong, James, 1882-1958, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/157
  • Person
  • 05 July 1882-10 January 1958

Born: 05 July 1882, New Ross, County Wexford
Entered: 18 March 1904, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final Vows: 02 February 1915, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 10 January 1958, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

◆ Irish Province News

Province News 33rd Year No 2 1958

Obituary :

Br James Furlong (1882-1958)

Br. James Furlong was born in July, 1882, in New Ross. He entered the Society on 18th March, 1904. While yet a novice he was sent to Gardiner St. and remained there till his death on the 10th January of this year. He became Sacristan of the Church after the death of Br. Mahon in April, 1917, but had done much of the sacristy work in the previous two or three years.
It is not too much to describe his fifty-two years in Gardiner St. as a chapter in the history of the church which began in 1832. His one interest was in the church. In a special sense he could have said: “I have loved, O Lord, the beauty of Thy house”. This love was shown in his unremitting zeal in all that concerned the altar. Everything was carefully attended to, the chalices, ciboria, candlesticks always polished, the vestments kept clean and in good repair, “the white cloth spread glistening for the Mass”. A nun, writing from Kildare, recalls that when as a young girl she watched Br. Furlong, prepare the altar, she thought : “If only I could live and work like that for Jesus”.
His ordinary work put him in contact with people of all kinds, and he had the gift which made him many friends among them. Thus he had lady helpers, both poor and well-to-do, in making and mending for the altar. He was never without help from the Mass servers and “old boys” to whom his character had some special appeal. He won their hearts, for he was a genuine man. In his dealings with the boys he could be brusque enough. He could hustle and order them about, and often seemed over-exacting in his demands on them. Yet they did not fear him. They sensed that he understood them, and there was no sting in his rebukes.
He had their welfare at heart. He enjoyed organising their little celebrations, preparing for their annual excursion to Clongowes, the big outing of the year. He joined simply and heartily in their occasional parties in the choir room, and got cross with anyone who would not contribute a song or some other item to the entertainment.
His old Mass servers gave a striking proof of their regard for him, when a large number of them gathered to honour him at a Golden Jubilee dinner in the Belvedere Hotel. A source of great happiness to Br. Furlong was the number of sacristy boys who had become priests and brothers. Some are in the Society, some among the diocesan. clergy, at least six are Marist priests or brothers. One joined the Picpus Fathers, and spent many years in Fr. Damian's Island of Molokai.
There was nothing subtle or mysterious about Br. Furlong. He was forthright and outspoken, but not given to expressing his views. He had to be drawn, then he spoke sincerely. He was simple and straight in his outlook. He enjoyed an amusing story or incident, and laughed heartily when he heard it. He would tell it to his friends. On his last visit to an elderly lady who had been confined to her house for some years, he told a story he had heard in the community. A certain victim of heart trouble was given a prescription by the doctor. He was to take the medicine every second day, take it one day and skip the next, and so on. Some time after, the man's wife sadly told the doctor of the patient's death. The medicine had been all right. It was the skipping that killed him. And Br. Furlong's story was a good prescription to cheer a lonely invalid.
Br. Furlong was a happy man. He needed no relaxation outside the ordinary round of his work, which provided him with pleasant contacts with many friends; and the ordinary recreation of the Society where he was an easy and pleasant companion. He was ready to enjoy the simplest bit of fun or engage in an argument. It was all the happier, when, as in recent years, many of these engagements were with two of his former altar boys, Brs. Foley and Colgan.
His life was busy and contented. The work of his department could be taken for granted. He fitted easily into the community. In the past few years impaired health made him hand over more and more of the church work to Br. Foley. He had much illness of body to suffer, but his faculties never failed, and he was at hand to direct, and to do much of the lighter work of the sacristy.
His name is linked with one notable and glorious chapter of Dublin's history, the sanctity of Matt Talbot. Matt was amongst the group to whom Br, Furlong for years opened the church door at 5.30 each morning. And so he was called upon to give evidence in Matt's cause,
Br. Furlong's piety was, like himself, simple. After his work round the altar, he liked to retire in the afternoon to the organ loft or the domestic chapel for a long visit. Love of the church, love of the Rosary, love of the Blessed Sacrament, these were obvious in his life.
So, known far and wide, and associated with the church for so many years, but personally unassuming and sincere in all his ways, Br. Furlong passed from his good and faithful service to the Master's yet more beautiful House.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Brother James Furlong SJ 1882-1957
Br James Furlong spent fifty two years as Sacristan in Gardiner Street Church. Surely that is a record comparable with the years of service of St Alphonsus Rodriguez as porter in Palma.

His care of the altar and the Church, and all that appertained it was the tender solicitude of a mother for her child. Truly it could be said of him “I have loved, O Lord the beauty of Thy House”. It follows “as the night, the day” in the words of Fr Michael Brown, that such a long period of service in one house was based on an essential fitness and deep spirituality in Br Furlong.

He came into contact with all sorts, high and low, rich and poor. Many friends he made who helped him with the altar. But his best friends were the altar-boys, many of whom, influenced by his example, became priests and religious, Jesuits – one of them a Provincial. On the occasion of his Golden Jubilee, these old boys entertained Br Furlong to dinner. Their number, their excellence, their high standing in their vocations, is sufficient tribute to Br Furlong. “By their fruits ye shall know them”.

He died on January 10th, being born in New Ross in 1882.

Gellous, Stephen, 1613-1678, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1358
  • Person
  • 01 February 1613-22 July 1678

Born: 01 February 1613, Gellowstown, Dublin
Entered: 17 May 1639, Mechelen, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 04 April 1643, Antwerp, Belgium
Died: 22 July 1678, County Wexford

Son of John and Maud O’Dunn.
Studied Humanities in Dublin under a priest Mr Edmund Doyle, Philosophy in a house of the Society under Fr Henry Cavell. They taught Grammar in Dublin.
Received into Soc in Belgium by Fr Robert Nugent
1644 At Antwerp (Arch Irish College Rome IV)
1647 Came to Mission (1650 CAT)
1649 Catalogue is at Kilkenny
1666 Is near New Ross where he conducts a boarding school with Fr Rice, administers the sacraments and other parochial duties. Was captured three times but set free each time. Now on the mission 23 years
A book in Waterford Library has “Steph Gellous Soc Jesu Resid Waterf”

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Son of John Gellows, a carpenter, and Maud née Dunn (Mechelen Album) Family originally from Gellowstown, Co Meath (now Bellewstown)
Early education was in Dublin under Edmund Doyle, a Priest, and then two years Philosophy under Henry Cavell at the Dublin Residence. He then taught Grammar at Douai until he was admitted to the Society by Robert Nugent, Mission Superior, 07 March 1637, and then sent to Mechelen for his Noviceship in 1639.
Studied three years Moral Theology. Knew Irish, English, Flemish and Latin.
1647 Sent to Irish Mission and had been a Professor of Poetry. Taught in the lower schools for three years and was a Confessor (HIB CAT 1650 - ARSI)
1649 Teaching Humanities at Kilkenny (Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)
1650-1660 He was a Missioner in New Ross, and in spite of all the efforts of the rebel Cromwellian forces, he continued by a constant miracle to escape arrest and say his daily Mass, which he did for twenty years. He went sometimes disguised as a faggot-dealer, a servant, a thatcher, porter, beggar, gardener, miller, carpenter, tailor, milkman, peddlar, dealer in rabbit-skins etc. he was nevertheless arrested four times, but always contrived to escape.
1666 Living near New Ross, where he kept a boarding school with Father Rice, taught Humanities and was a Missioner, Preacher, and occasionally with Father Rice, performing the duties of PP to the satisfaction of the Vicar General. The school took the lead of all the others in the country, but it was broken up in the persecution of 1670.
1673 He then taught about forty scholars near Dublin, and then tried to return to New Ross to unsuccessfully re-open his school there.
He was captured four times, and as often released, including riding a race with Cromwellian soldiers. He worked in the Irish Mission for twenty-three years.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of John, a carpenter, and Mouda née O’Dunn
Had studied Humanities for seven years under Edmund Doyle, a secular priest in Dublin, and then studied Philosophy for two years at the Dublin Residence with Henry McCavell (McCaughwell) as his teacher. With these studies, he then started teaching Grammar in Dublin, until he was received for the Society by Robert Nugent.
1641 After his First Vows he studied Theology at Antwerp, and with special dispensation from Fr General before he had begun his fifth year in the Society, he was Ordained there 04 April 1643. This dispensation was granted thanks to the Flemish Provincial’s report on Stephen's mature virtue.
1643-1644 Theology was not his forte and so he was sent immediately to Lierre for Tertianship
1644 Sent to Ireland and was to teaching at Kilkenny. Mercure Verdier in his Report of 24 June 1649 for the General on on the Irish Mission described Gellous as “an excellent religious man, who takes no part in worldly business”.
After the Cromwellian conquest he left Kilkenny to exercise his mission in Co Wexford. He became something of a legend for resourcefulness during the “commonwealth” regime. he was captured four times but managed to get free. On one occasion, a protestant judge, disgusted by the perjury of Gellous’ betrayer let him go free. On another occasion he was deported to France, but due to a storm the Captain had to return to port, and once there let Gellous go free. On yet another occasion, he was out on a mission when he rode straight into a troop of Cromwell’s, and he challenged them to a horse race. They accepted, and at the end of the race let him go.
His HQ during these years was New Ross, and it was there, probably at the Restoration, that he opened a famous school, and with Stephen Rice conducted it with great success. Protestants, no less than Catholics were anxious to have their sons educated at this school whom was seen as a genius teacher. One feature of this school was the production of plays he had seen acted in Belgium.
1670 He was visited by the Protestant bishop and told to close the school and leave New Ross. The decision angered Catholic and Protestant locals alike. He staged his farewell by putting on for free, four plays acted by his pupils for the town, and then withdrew to Dublin.
1671-1673 Outside Dublin he conducted a small school by himself for two years
1673 Back in New Ross by popular acclaim and was there until 1678 - the year of his death
Most probably notifications of his death to the General would have gone astray due to the confusion caused during the Titus Oates's Plot.
By the Society’s standards, Stephen was not a clever man in book-learning, but his judgement on weighty matters affecting the Irish Mission was both sought for and respected by the General.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Stephen Gelouse SJ 1614-1675
In Ireland exact date and circumstances unknown died Fr Stephen Gelouse, a man of versatile talents and great zeal. He was born in Meath in 1614, was admitted to the Society in 1639 by Fr Robert Nugent in Dublin, did his noviceship in Mechelen and two and a half years of Philosophy under Fr Henry Cavell in the Dublin Residence.

He will always be remembered for his long and arduous ministry in New Ross, where for nineteen years he laboured as a priest and teacher. His school was famous. Fr Stephen Rice, the Superior writes this to the General : “Stephen Gelouse SJ has been working in and near New Ross this year 1669, and ever since 1650. When the plague and Cromwell’s tyranny ceased, Fr Gelouse taught a small school in a wretched hovel, beside a deep ditch, and there taught a few children privately. When the king was restored, his companion thought they might make a venture, the hut was levelled and a large house built, where they opened a school. It became famous and drew scholars from various parts of Ireland. There were 120 boys, of whom 35 (18 Catholics and 17 Protestants) were boarders. The Jesuits were forced to take the Protestants by their parents. The school flourished for 6 years. Fr Stephen produced a play which was enacted in the main square in new Ross. The play lasted three hours and was witnessed by a very large throng of Protestants and Catholics, many of whom came from distant towns to witness the novel spectacle. For the first time in Ireland, scenery was used on the stage. After the play there was a distribution of prizes”.

When the school was forced to close in 1670, in spite of Protestant parents who fought the authorities for its continued existence Fr Gelouse went to Dublin, where he taught a school of 40 pupils. In spite of persecution, he never missed a day saying Mass for 20 years. He was arrested 4 times, but managed to escape. He used adopt many forms of disguise : a dealer in faggots; a servant; a thatcher; a porter; a beggar; a gardener; a miller; a tailor; a milkman; a peddler, a carpenter and seller of rabbit skins. It was no wonder that he was so expert at training the youth to act.

In 1673 he tried to reopen the school at New Ross, but Protestant fanaticism defeated him. He was still alive in 1675.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
GELOSSE, STEPHEN, born in 1617, was teaching Poetry in Kilkenny College in 1649, and was then reported by the visitor Pere Verdier, as a truly good and religious man. I believe he made his debut as a Missioner at Waterford, whence he was sent to Ross to attend F. Gregory Dowdall in his last illness, and who died in his arms, on the 9th of August, 1659. For the next 19 years he continued to exercise his pastoral functions in that town and neighbourhood. No dangers that threatened him from the Cromwellian party who filled every place with blood and terror, could deter this genuine hero from doing his duty : no weather, no pestilential fevers, no difficulties could hold him back from visiting the sick and the dying in their meanest hovels!. His purse, his time, his services, were always at the command of the distressed Catholic : it was his food and delight to exercise the works of mercy corporal and spiritual. Though the tyrant Cromwell had issued a proclamation to his troops, (and they were in the habit of searching the houses of respectable Catholics), that should they apprehend a Priest in any house, the owner of such house should be hung up before his own door, and all his property be confiscated; and that the captors of the Priest should be rewarded at the rate the Wolf destroyers formerly received (so little value was attached to a Priest s life); nevertheless F. Gelosse managed every day to offer up the unbloody sacrifice of the altar : his extraordinary escapes from the clutches of his pursuers border on the miraculous. He adopted every kind of disguise; he assumed every shape and character ; he personated a dealer of fagots, a servant, a thatcher, a porter, a beggar, a gardener, a miller, a carpenter, a tailor with his sleeve stuck with needles, a milkman, a pedlar, a seller of rabbit skins, &c. thus becoming all to all, in order to gain all to Christ. However, he was four times apprehended, as he told F. Stephen Rice; but his presence of mind never forsook him and he ingeniously contrived to extricate himself without much difficulty. After the restoration of Charles II. he set up a school at Ross, which took precedence of all others in the country, whether rank, numbers, proficiency, discipline, or piety, be taken into consideration, but this was broken up by the persecution in 1670. He then removed to the vicinity of Dublin, where he taught about forty scholars; and in August, 1673, he returned to Ross to reopen his school, but at the end of three months was obliged by the fanatical spirit abroad to abandon this favourite pursuit. He was still living in the summer of 1675, when I regret to part company with him.

Gerrot, John, 1558-1614, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1361
  • Person
  • 1558-02 February 1614

Born: 1558, County Wexford
Entered: 23 April 1580, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Professed: 02 February 1597
Died: 02 February 1614, County Wexford

1584 Was in Jesuit Seminary in Rome 26 March 1584, as Prefect of the Dormitory. Has studied Humanities and Philosophy
1586 Was sent to Germany
1587 Was at Vienna since 25 December 1586. Has studied Philosophy and theology 3 years each. Talent for preaching
1590-1600 At Vienna College teaching. Very erudite in Philosophy and Theology
1603-1606 At Graz College teaching Philosophy and Ethics, Spiritual Director and Confessor.
There is a note probably by Fr Aquaviva lamenting that fit for the Mission cannot be admitted

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronolgica” :
He was a learned man; In Vienna AD 1593; He was the twenty-second professed in order of antiquity at the Provincial Congregation at Olmütz (Olomouc) in 1597 - and sixteenth in 1603;
In Wexford AD 1609 and 1611; Of great zeal and mortification. (cf Foley’s Collectanea)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Had already begun his studies before Ent 23 April 1580 Rome
1582-1586 After First Vows he was sent on Regency as a Prefect at the Roman College.
1586-1589 He was sent to Austria for Theology, and was Ordained at Vienna 1589
1589-1609 He held a Chair of Philosophy and also Controversial Theology at Vienna and in 1603 was sent to teach at Graz and where he was the Dean of Philosophy.
1609 Sent to Ireland. This was very much against the wishes of the Austrian Provincial who highly valued not only his teaching, but also his skill as a Spiritual Director for the Scholastics. The General decided the needs in Ireland were more pressing, and so he set out on a long journey, seeing him arrive at the Dublin Residence in 1610. he was ill equipped for Missionary work, as he had no knowledge of Irish. He worked in the town of Wexford for a while, but left there to go to the countryside in Co Wexford among English speakers. He died there 02 February 1614.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
GEROT, JOHN. His Superior F. Holiwood, soon after his return to Ireland, applied that F. Gerot might be sent over to him, as his services could be use fully employed at Wexford.

Hamlin, Bartholomew, 1590-1649, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1405
  • Person
  • 24 August 1590-15 August 1649

Born: 24 August 1590, County Meath
Entered: 14 November 1609, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Ordained: c 1614, Rome, Italy
Professed: 1625
Died: 15 August 1649, County Wexford

Has studied Philosophy and Theology at Rome
1611 In Roman College
1616 Catalogue At College of Ascoli Piceno (ROM) Talent good - ability for Missions above average. Taught Humanities
1619 Not in Catalogue
1621 Catalogue On the Mission 4 years. Strong, good talent and judgement, not so prudent. Is beginning to preach and this gives satisfaction.
1622 Catalogue Is in Leinster
1636 Catalogue Good in all, choleric, a preacher
1639 at Tournai (Tertianship?)
1642 At Mons College

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
He was Professor of Rhetoric and a man of ability; A great Preacher in Wexford;
Born in Drogheda according to one account
1617 Came to Ireland and attached to Dublin or Meath Residence (cf Foley’s "Collectanea")

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Had already studied at Douai before Ent 14 November 1609 Rome
After First Vows he resumed studies at the Roman College and was Ordained c 1614
Sent to teach at Ascoli he was then sent to Ireland 1616/7. Henry Fitzsimon had proposed that he should be appointed Procurator of Irish affairs in Rome, but the General was unwilling due to his short number of years in the Society.
1616/7 Sent to Ireland and to Dublin Residence. He taught Humanities at Back Lane.
1630 Fr General ordered the Mission Superior to admit Fr Hamlin to Final Vows, but in 1639 he was still a “scholastic”. It is likely that he met with the disapproval of the Anglo-Irish Consultors of the Provincial.
1639 Sent to Belgium with no reference to the General, who demanded an explanation. There was correspondence between the General and the Mission Superior for a time.
1644 Fr General ordered that Fr Hamlin be sent back to Ireland. He was sent to teach at the Wexford school.
1649 Verdure’s Visitation reported that he was a good teacher but that “he spoke out rather too freely in favour of the Nuncio, so that the Supreme Council was for putting him in prison”. He died in Wexford 15 August 1649

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
HAMLIN, BARTHOLOMEW, was a Sexagenarian at Wexford, in 1649, but in full vigour, teaching Rhetoric with great spirit, and meriting the reputation of an excellent and fearless preacher.

Hanrahan, Nicholas, 1831-1891, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1407
  • Person
  • 21 October 1831-09 April 1891

Born: 21 October 1831, Templeshanbo, County Wexford
Entered: 12 September 1853, Amiens, France - Franciae Province (FRA)
Ordained: 1861
Professed: 15 August 1873
Died: 09 April 1891, Fordham College, NY, USA - Marylandiae Neo-Eboracensis Province (MARNEB)

Harrison, James Ignatius, 1695-1768, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1411
  • Person
  • 11 June 1695-08 November 1768

Born: 11 June 1695, Kilmuckridge, Co Wexford
Entered: 24 August 1710, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: 1720, Salamanca, Spain,
Final Vows: 15 August 1728
Died: 08 November 1768, Genoa Italy - Castellanae Province (CAST)

Alias Henriquez

Son of Peter Harrison (Henriquez) and Joan née Grace. Younger brother of John Harrison (Henriquez) RIP 1738

◆ Stray Edmund Hogan note “James Henry Henriquez” 10 January 1702
James Ignatius Enriquez (Henry)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Peter and Joan née Grace. Brother of John Harrison (Henriquez)
After First Vows he studied at Medina del Campo and Salamanca where he was Ordained by 1720
Taught Humanities at Villafranca (Villafranca del Bierzo) and was then made Minister until 1724
1724-1730 Taught Philosophy successively at Soria and Logroño
1730-1737 Taught Moral Theology at Orduña - in 1736 was asked by Fr General to support his country’s Mission by becoming Prefect of Studies at Poitiers, but he declined but offered to serve on the Irish mission itself. His offer was not accepted. It seems probable that the General's invitation to Harrison to leave CAST was motivated by the unpopularity incurred by his brother John Harrison. It is probable too that the General was unwilling to send him to Ireland, as his brother John had been a source of friction between the Archbishop of Ireland and the local Mission Superior. So, in 1737 he either resigned or was relieved of his professorship
1737-1767 Sent as Operarius successively at Montforte, Coruña, Leon, Monforte again until the Jesuits were expelled from Spain
1767 He found refuge at a Retreat House in Genoa, Italy where he died 08 November 1768

Harrison, John, 1682-1738, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1412
  • Person
  • 29 September 1682-20 February 1738

Born: 26 September 1682, Kilmuckridge, Co Wexford
Entered: 29 November 1702, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: c 1711
Final Vows: 15 August 1720
Died: 20 February 1738, Huesca, Spain - Aragoniae Province (ARA)

Alias Henriquez

Son of Peter Harrison (Henriquez) and Joan née Grace. Brother of James Harrison (Henriquez) RIP 1768

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1724-1728 Rector Santiago (succeeded “James Harrison perhaps should read James O’Connor alias Henriquez)
1728-1730 Rector Santiago from 17 October 1728 (should read Salamanca)
1729 Irish Mission Superior expressed his regret that he is being kept at Salamanca, as he was wanted or himself desired for the Irish Mission
From letters written to him he appears to have been well liked and rendered good service. (cf letters written to him from Joseph Delamer and Thomas Gorman - IER March 1874)
Documents of his are preserved at Salamanca
He wrote a petition to the King of Spain giving an account of the College of Salamanca (Dr McDonald’s “Irish Colleges Abroad”) (though this sounds more like Joseph Delamer?)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Peter and Joan née Grace. Brother of James Harrison (Henriquez)
Had studied Philosophy at Compostella before Ent 29/11/1702 Villagarcía
After First Vows he was sent to Compostella to complete his studies
There is no knowledge bewteen 1705-1714, but he was a priest by 1711
1714-1724 At Valladolid teaching Philosophy after two years post graduate studies and was Chair of Dogmatic Theology
1724-1728 Rector of Irish College Santiago and remained there until he succeeded Joseph Delamar (on his death) as Rector at Irish College Salamanca
1728-1731 Rector of Salamanca, but was deposed after three years later due to ill-considered judgements communicated to others. He had come in for extreme criticism by his Spanish Superiors for his administration at Compostela, and it was suggested that the College became burdened with huge debt and the discipline had become very relaxed. This caused significant embarrassment for the Irish Mission Superior, Ignatius Kelly. He wrote to Ignatius Kelly suggesting that there were eight places available at Compostela for 1730. Ignatius Kelly duly informed the local Archbishops, so that they might choose candidates. Meanwhile Harrison’s Spanish successor as Rector at Compostela wrote to Ignatius Kelly suggesting that there were in fact only four places.. At this point also, Harrison began to question the suitability of candidates for Salamanca sent to him by the Spanish Rector at Compostella. Meanwhile the Archbishops in Ireland wrote to the new General (Retz) both congratulating him and informing him of their concerns regarding the management of the Irish Colleges, and in particular the work of John Harrison.
1731 He fled, unauthorised and unannounced to Ireland and Dublin but was persuaded by Ignatius Kelly to accompany him as far as Poitiers, from where Harrison said he would travel to Rome to meet the General. He didn’t in fact go to Rome. he eventually arrived at Madrid where he stayed two years (1733-1735). After this he was withdrawn by the General from CAST and sent to ARA where he worked at the Church in Huesca until his death 20 February 1738
He was clearly a very talented man, but understood little of the ways of administration or diplomacy. His removal from CAST was damaging both to himself and the way this affected the Irish Jesuit Mission, especially in the Colleges of Spain. As a result of the anger and suspicion, no Irishmen were received in CAST for ten years.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father John Harrison SJ 1702-1738
Not every Jesuit who becomes a Rector becomes an Earl at the same time. This was the fate of Fr John Harrison, born in Kilmuckeridge, Diocese of Ferns, who entered the Society at Compostella in 1702. It happened in this way :
Fr Harrison became Rector of Salamanca in 1728 after the death of Don Dermitio O’Sullivan, who had made our College at Salamanca his universal heir. So Fr Harrison became ipso facto Earl of Beare and Bantry.

He had previously been Rector of Santoago from 17245-1728.

Hickey, Michael, 1819-1876, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1446
  • Person
  • 06 January 1819-03 November 1876

Born: 06 January 1819, Ballyroebuck, County Wexford
Entered: 30 August 1857, Sault-au-Rècollet Canada - Franciae Province (FRA)
Professed: 15 August 1868
Died: 03 November 1876, Sault-au-Récollet, Montréal, Québec, Canada - Neo-Eboracensis-Canadensis Province (NEBCAN)

Part of the Wiikwemkoong First Nation, Manitoulin Island, Killarney, Ontario, Canada community at the time of death.

Hoer, John, 1825-1911, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1452
  • Person
  • 01 January 1825-15 September 1911

Born: 01 January 1825, Taghmon, County Wexford
Entered: 26 October 1857, Florissant MO, USA - Missouriana Province (MIS)
Professed: 15 August 1868
Died: 15 September 1911, St Louis University, St Louis, MO, USA - Missouriana Province (MIS)

Hore, Nicholas, 1620-1649, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1460
  • Person
  • 1620-01 November 1649

Born: 1621, Aughfad, County Wexford
Entered: 16 March 1646, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: Salamanca, Spain - pre Entry
Died: 01 November 1649, Monterey College, Ourense, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of David and Elizabeth née Roche
Educated at the Irish College of Salamanca and Ordained there before Ent 16 March 1646 Villagarcía CAST
1648 After First Vows he was appointed Minister at Monterey College where he died shortly after 01 November 1649
(Note: his birthplace is also given as Aghfad, diocese of Ferns)

Houling, John, 1543-1599, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1461
  • Person
  • 1543-07 March 1599

Born: 1543, Wexford
Entered: 1570, St Andrea, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Died: 07 March 1599, San Roque, Lisbon, Portugal - Lusitaniae Province (LUS). Described as a "Martyr of Charity".

1590-1599 At Casa San Roque Lisbon, Age 50, Society 7, Confessor

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ "Catalogica Chronolgica":
He was a Martyr of Charity; Founded the College of Lisbon; Writer; Very zealous; A good linguist.
He is much praised by Fitzsimon and Copinger (his contemporaries) [cf Foley “Collectanea”]

◆ Fr Francis Finagan SJ:
Was already Ordained before Ent 1583 Rome. Received into the Society by General Aquaviva.
Although he entered at Rome, as there was no room there he was sent to make his Noviceship at Arona (near Milan)'.
1585-1589 Seems to have been at Genoa studying'.
1589 Sent by the General to Lisbon to take the place of Father Robert Rochford in ministering to the sailors and merchants who frequented the port, and lived at the Residence and Church of San Roque. He met with poor students arriving from Ireland or already living precariously in the city, anxious to make their ecclesiastical studies and return as priests to work amongst their countrymen. His immediate problem was feeding and housing them. By questing for alms for the support of these poor Irishmen he was able to meet their immediate and most pressing needs; food; clothing and lodging adequate for study and prayer. But Royal recognition and support were necessary to assure stability to the work. Thanks to the good offices of a Jesuit Pedro Fonseca, the Royal approval was secured and the Irish College, Lisbon, came officially into being on 1 February, 1593. A wealthy nobleman, Antonio Fernando Ximenes, endowed the Chairs of Theology in the College. Howling himself never became Rector of the College he did so much to found. His preference was that his Mission amongst sailors, traders and the refugees from the Elizabethan persecution, would have been impossible if he had been tied down by the problems inseparable from government. He died a martyr of charity during an outbreak of plague in the city 07 march 1599 (though this seems to have been a common date of death for many Jesuits who died in the plague of the time in different parts of Europe). In his busy nine years in Portugal, Howling must have found little leisure for writing yet he can be fairly described as the the first of the modern Irish martyrologists from Bishop Rothe to Bruodin. His opusculum is entitled “Perbreve Compendium in quo contin- entur nonnulli eorum qui .. . in Hybernia, regnante IMPIA REGINA Elizatleth martyrium perpessi sunt”. (Spic.Ossor.l, pp 82 sqq.)

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Houling, (Howlin), John
by Judy Barry

Houling, (Howlin), John (1543/4–1599), Jesuit and martyrologist, was born in Wexford and entered the priesthood at an unknown date. He is first recorded in 1577 when he was at Alcala de Henares, Spain (where he was a friend of William Walsh (qv), the exiled bishop of Meath). He was in Galicia in 1580 and in Lisbon in February 1583. Towards the end of that year he entered the Society of Jesus in Rome and was sent to Milan for his noviciate. In September 1589 he set out for Spain and was directed to a Jesuit house in Lisbon to take the place of Robert Rochford who ministered to Irish sailors and catholic exiles who landed at that port. Many of the exiles were unaccompanied youths and Houling’s concern for their welfare led him to envisage founding a college to provide them with an education. In 1592, he assisted Thomas White (qv), who had encountered similar problems at Valladolid, to establish a college for Irish students at Salamanca, with a royal guarantee of admission to the university.

Shortly after, having raised sufficient money to buy a disused convent, Houling brought his plans for Lisbon to fruition: on 1 February 1593, with the aid of Father Pedro Fonseca, he established the Irish College of St Patrick with an initial enrolment of thirty students. For the next six years he taught in the college and administered its affairs, overcoming its initial financial difficulties with funds provided by the viceroy of Portugal and the assistance of a local nobleman, Antonio Fernando Ximenes, who established an endowment to support fourteen students. In October 1599 plague broke out in Lisbon, and Houling and three fellow Jesuits busied themselves with visiting the sick and distributing food. All four died of the plague. Houling died in Lisbon, but the date recorded (7 March 1599) is clearly notional, having been assigned also to the deaths of a number of Jesuits who died about this time in different parts of Europe.

About 1589, Houling compiled the first native Irish martyrology, ‘Perbreve compendium’, a biographical listing of forty-six Irish people who had suffered for their religion between 1578 and 1588, thirty-nine of whom had died. Almost all were from Munster and south Leinster and most were Anglo-Irish. Rather more than half were lay people. Some of these were people of note, including the 15th earl of Desmond (qv), his brothers James and John (qv) and the brothers of Lord Baltinglass (qv), but there were ordinary people as well, among them a Wexford baker, Matthew Lambert (qv). Two were women, Margaret Ball (qv) and Margery Barnewall, who had suffered persecution for their faith.

Houling, in effect, was ascribing martyrdom to those he believed to have died for their faith in the Desmond, Baltinglass and Nugent rebellions or who had suffered in the aftermath. It is unlikely that he was in Ireland during the decade but he was personally acquainted with some of those whose stories he recorded, including Barnewall whose confessor he had been in Galicia, and his work provides an insight into the way in which exiles perceived events at home. It is preserved in the archives of the Irish College of Salamanca and was printed by Cardinal P. F. Moran (qv) in Spicilegium Ossoriense, i (1874), 82–109.

Edmund Hogan, Distinguished Irishmen of the sixteenth century (1894), 29–47; Irish Jesuit Archives (Leeson St., Dublin), MacErlean transcripts; Proinsias Ó Fionnagáin, SJ, ‘A biographical dictionary of Irish Jesuits in the time of the Society's third mission, 1598–1773’ (unpublished MS, c.1970s); Colm Lennon, The lords of Dublin in the age of reformation (1989), 143, 156–8, 213–14; Alan Ford, ‘Martyrdom, history and memory in early modern Ireland’, Ian McBride (ed.), History and memory in modern Ireland (2001), 43–66

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father John Howling 1542-1599
The name of Fr John Howling deserved to be held in honour and benediction for two reasons : Firstly because he was the founder of the Irish College in Lisbon in 1593, which, in the words of Fr Edmond Hogan “was a momentous event in Irish history, determining in a very great measure, the Catholic future of the country”; Secondly, for his work as a historian. In the midst of his most arduous labours for the faith, he wrote a most valuable account of the Irish martyrs done to death between 1578 and 1588. It is the very first contribution to an Irish Martyrology.

Fr Howling was a Wexford man, born in 1542 and entering the Society in 1573. He was an able writer, and excellent linguist, a man of untiring zeal, and lastly, a Martyr himself, for he died nursing those sick from the plague in Lisbon, on December 13th 1599.

Fr Henry FitzSimon wrote of him : “Fr Howling, by his pains advanced the public good of his country to his greatest power, leaving his memory in continual benediction, and that by him, our sad country hath received many rare helps and supplies, to the gread advancement of God’s glory and the discomfiture of heretics”.

Fr Howling’s name is given by Oliver in his “Collectanea” as “Olongo” (CCXIII), where he refers to him as “This unaccountable name (Q Lynch) as given by Fr Matthioas Tanner, p 347 of “Confessors of the Society of Jesus”.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
HOULING, JOHN This Father is mentioned in the Preface to F. Fitzsimon’s “Treatise on the Mass"

OLINGO, JOHN. This unaccountable name (Q. Lynch ?) is given by F Matthias Tanner, p. 347, “Confessors of the Society of Jesus”, to an Irish Father who died a victim of charity in attending persons attacked with the plague of Lisbon, in the Month of January, 1599.

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.

Keating, Andrew P, 1843-1895, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2358
  • Person
  • 25 March 1843-29 March 1895

Born: 25 March 1843, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 26 July 1860, Frederick, MD, USA - Marylandiae Province (MAR)
Ordained: 1873
Final Vows: 15 August 1882
Died: 29 March 1895, St Peter’s College, Jersey City, NJ, USA - Marylandiae Neo-Eboracensis Province (MARNEB)

Keating, Edward Devereux, 1708-1777, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1501
  • Person
  • 16 March 1708-30 March 1737

Born: 16 March 1708, Wexford Town
Entered: 21 May 1737, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: - pre Entry
Died: 30 March 1737, Wexford

1741-1750 Teaching Philosophy and Rhetoric
1750 Went to Wexford - made PP of Wexford by Papal rescript 01 June 1756
Bishop Sweetman wrote of his visitation to Wexford 20/04/1758 “I visited and confirmed on which occasion Fr Devereux Keating gave a handsome exhortation on the Sacrament. Everything was done with diligence and edification”
In History of Diocese of Ferns is named as “Edward Devereux Keating”

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1750 PP of Wexford by Papal Rescript
1777 Wrote the “Wexford Parish Register 01 June 1736-30 March 1777”
Professor of Rhetoric and Philosophy for nine years and then came to Wexford

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Already a priest and had studied Philosophy at Santiago and Theology at Salamanca when he Ent 21 June 1737 Villagarcía
After First Vows he taught Humanities for a year and then was sent to Royal College Salamanca to complete his Theology studies
1741-1742 Tertianship at Valladolid
1742-1747 Taught Humanities at Oviedo College
1747-1750 Taught Philosophy at Segovia
1750 Sent to Ireland and appointed to Wexford where he became PP by Papal rescript 01 May 1756. He was subsequently appointed Vicar General. On the suppression of the Society he was one of the signatories of the instrument accepting that brief, and he then became incardinated in the diocese of Ferns and died at Wexford 30 March 1777

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Edward Keating SJ 1708-1777
Edward Keating was born in Leinster on October 13th 1708. He entered the Society in Castille on May 31st 1737.
Having taught Humanities for 6 years and Philosophy for 3, he returned to Ireland in 1750. Wexford was the scene of his labours.
He was one of those Jesuits left in Ireland after the Suppression, and was one of the Trustees of the Mission Funds.
His death took place on March 30th 1777.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
KEATING, EDWARD, was born in Leinster on the 13th of October, 1703, entered the Order in the Province of Castille, on the 2lst of May, 1737. After finishing his studies he was employed to teach Humanities for six years and Philosophy for three years This Professed Father came to the Mission in 1750, and cultivated strenuously and usefully the vineyard at Wexford, where 1 lose sight of him in 1755.

◆ Fr Joseph McDonnell SJ Past and Present Notes :
16th February 1811 At the advance ages of 73, Father Betagh, PP of the St Michael Rosemary Lane Parish Dublin, Vicar General of the Dublin Archdiocese died. His death was looked upon as almost a national calamity. Shops and businesses were closed on the day of his funeral. His name and qualities were on the lips of everyone. He was an ex-Jesuit, the link between the Old and New Society in Ireland.

Among his many works was the foundation of two schools for boys : one a Classical school in Sall’s Court, the other a Night School in Skinner’s Row. One pupil received particular care - Peter Kenney - as he believed there might be great things to come from him in the future. “I have not long to be with you, but never fear, I’m rearing up a cock that will crow louder and sweeter for yopu than I ever did” he told his parishioners. Peter Kenney was to be “founder” of the restored Society in Ireland.

There were seventeen Jesuits in Ireland at the Suppression : John Ward, Clement Kelly, Edward Keating, John St Leger, Nicholas Barron, John Austin, Peter Berrill, James Moroney, Michael Cawood, Michael Fitzgerald, John Fullam, Paul Power, John Barron, Joseph O’Halloran, James Mulcaile, Richard O’Callaghan and Thomas Betagh. These men believed in the future restoration, and they husbanded their resources and succeeded in handing down to their successors a considerable sum of money, which had been saved by them.

A letter from the Acting General Father Thaddeus Brezozowski, dated St Petersburg 14/06/1806 was addressed to the only two survivors, Betagh and O’Callaghan. He thanked them for their work and their union with those in Russia, and suggested that the restoration was close at hand.

A letter from Nicholas Sewell, dated Stonyhurst 07/07/1809 to Betagh gives details of Irishmen being sent to Sicily for studies : Bartholomew Esmonde, Paul Ferley, Charles Aylmer, Robert St Leger, Edmund Cogan and James Butler. Peter Kenney and Matthew Gahan had preceded them. These were the foundation stones of the Restored Society.

Returning to Ireland, Kenney, Gahan and John Ryan took residence at No3 George’s Hill. Two years later, with the monies saved for them, Kenney bought Clongowes as a College for boys and a House of Studies for Jesuits. From a diary fragment of Aylmer, we learn that Kenney was Superior of the Irish Mission and Prefect of Studies, Aylmer was Minister, Claude Jautard, a survivor of the old Society in France was Spiritual Father, Butler was Professor of Moral and Dogmatic Theology, Ferley was professor of Logic and Metaphysics, Esmonde was Superior of Scholastics and they were joined by St Leger and William Dinan. Gahan was described as a Missioner at Francis St Dublin and Confessor to the Poor Clares and irish Sisters of Charity at Harold’s Cross and Summerhill. Ryan was a Missioner in St Paul’s, Arran Quay, Dublin. Among the Scholastics, Brothers and Masters were : Brothers Fraser, Levins, Connor, Bracken, Sherlock, Moran, Mullen and McGlade.

Trouble was not long coming. Protestants were upset that the Jesuits were in Ireland and sent a petition was sent to Parliament, suggesting that the Vow of Obedience to the Pope meant they could not have an Oath of Allegiance to the King. In addition, the expulsion of Jesuits from all of Europe had been a good thing. Kenney’s influence and diplomatic skills resulted in gaining support from Protestants in the locality of Clongowes, and a counter petition was presented by the Duke of Leinster on behalf of the Jesuits. This moment passed, but anto Jesuit feelings were mounting, such as in the Orange faction, and they managed to get an enquiry into the Jesuits and Peter Kenney and they appeared before the Irish Chief Secretary and Provy Council. Peter Kenney’s persuasive and oratorical skills won the day and the enquiry group said they were satisfied and impressed.

Over the years the Mission grew into a Province with Joseph Lentaigne as first Provincial in 1860. In 1885 the first outward undertaking was the setting up of an Irish Mission to Australia by Lentaigne and William Kelly, and this Mission grew exponentially from very humble beginnings.

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

Kehoe, Peter, 1835-1904, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/219
  • Person
  • 29 January 1835-02 January 1904

Born: 29 January 1835, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 22 December 1862, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 15 August 1873
Died; 02 January 1904, Clongowes Wood College, Naas, County Kildare

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
After First Vows he was sent for a year as Sacristan to Galway.
He was then sent to Tullabeg, and the rest of his life in the Society was spent here or at Clongowes, normally in the role of Sacristan or Dispenser. He is probably best remembered in the latter capacity, as he was anything but extravagant!
He was considered to be a quietly loyal and faithful brother who have edification by his manner and his religious life. He died at Clongowes 02 January 1904.

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

Kelly, Dominic, 1873-1952, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1510
  • Person
  • 04 August 1873-07 September 1952

Born: 04 August 1873, Co Wexford
Entered: 06 September 1890, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 28 July 1907, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1910, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 07 September 1952, Canisius College, Pymble, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

by 1900 at Valkenburg Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1909 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Dominic Kelly was educated at Clongowes, 1886-90, and entered the Society at Tullabeg, 6 September 1890. After studying the classics at the National University Dublin, 1892-95,
where he gained an MA, he taught rhetoric and prepared students for the public examinations at St Stanislaus College Tullabeg, 1895-99. Then he studied philosophy at Valkenburg, 1899-01, returning to Clongowes to teach Latin, Greek and German, 1901-03. A further few years were spent teaching at the Crescent, Limerick, before theology at Milltown Park, 1904-08. Tertianship was at Tronchiennes 1911.
After a few years teaching Greek and Latin at Clongowes, he was sent to Australia, teaching mathematics and physics at Xavier College, Kew, 1916-18.
He then went to Newman College, 1919-47, tutoring university students in Latin, Greek, French and German. He had a college choir for a few years, and was spiritual father to the
community. He enjoyed his time there, and the students enjoyed his company In his own quiet way, he joined the students in their activities. He attended all the sporting matches on the oval, and was seen on a bicycle watching the boat races. He entered into their poker games by working out the probability of a royal flush to be one in 649,739!
His final years, 1948-52, were spent teaching petrology and modern languages to the scholastics at Canisius College, Pymble. He also taught liturgy and biblical Greek.
Kelly was a very quiet little man, very erudite and modest with a wide variety of interests. He gave a good, but emotional retreat, and translated the Spiritual Exercises of Ignatius Loyola into Gaelic. He interested himself in astronomy and discovered a new star. As 1. hobby, he studied botany, especially seaweed. He could quote Horace without reference to the books. He was fascinated with cameras and took aerial photographs of Clongowes by means of a camera attached to a box kite. As a young man he played football and cricket and always remained a keen and capable tennis player. All in all, he was an accomplished person who was highly respected as a man who combined great learning with unaffected modesty.

Note from Wilfred Ryan Entry
He, with Jeremiah Murphy and Dominic Kelly, set the tone for Newman College of the future.

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 27th Year No 4 1952
Obituary :
Father Dominick Kelly (Australian Province)

Fr. Dom Kelly's death in Australia was announced on September 7th. Born in Waterford on August 4th, 1873, he appeared to have been the last surviving old boy of Tullabeg, where he spent six months before the amalgamation of that College with Clongowes in 1880. He was four years at Clongowes where he had a distinguished Intermediate course. His subjects included ancient classics, modern languages, mathematics, music, physics and drawing, in the latter subject he won medals in the Junior and Senior Grades. He entered the Society on September 6th, 1890 at Tullabeg, where he made his Juniorate studies, after which he remained on to teach the Juniors for some years, preparing at the same time for his own University examinations. He secured a high M.A. degree in classics at the old Royal University. He studied philosophy for three years at Valkenburg, Holland, after which he was classical master at Clongowes. He was ordained priest in 1907 at Milltown Park where he read a distinguished course in Theology. His third year probation he made at Tronchiennes. After this he resumed work in the classroom at Clongowes where he taught Greek, Latin and Irish until his transfer to Australia in 1917. He was master in Xavier College, Kew, until the opening of Newman College, Melbourne in 1919 when he began his long and fruitful association with University students as tutor in Greek, Latin, French and German.
This association was to last till the year 1948. In that year he became professor of patrology and modern languages at our Scholasticate in Pymble, N.S.W.
Fr. Dom was a man of brilliant intellectual parts and a delightful community man. Those of our Province who were privileged to have him as master can attest his talent for imparting knowledge and securing the pupil's delighted interest. No mean musician himself, he was charged, in addition to his other duties, with the office of choir master for nearly all his life. An amateur photographer of skill, he made local history in Clongowes once by securing aerial photos of the Castle and Grounds from a camera with a time-fuse which he floated by means of a kite. Fr. Kelly remained the doyen of the class room till his death at Pymble. In this year's Catalogue of the Australian Province he appears as “Lect. ling. mod. an. 51”, a record rarely, if ever beaten. May he rest in peace.

Kelly, Ignatius Daniel, 1679-1743, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1511
  • Person
  • 1679-03 October 1743

Born: 1679, Dungarvan, County Waterford
Entered: 17 November 1698, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: 1707, Valladolid, Spain
Final Vows: 02 February 1716
Died: 03 October 1743, Dungarvan, County Waterford

Alias Roche
Mission Vice-Superior 14 August 1727-1773

Entries in old books show that he belonged to :
1723 New Ross Residence
1723-1726 Waterford Residence
1737 Named Rector of Poitiers
His will made in 1743 names him as PP of St Patrick and St Olav Waterford (Thrifts Irish Wills VOL III p 75)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1727 Appointed Mission Superior - as appears by a letter of his to John Harrison 13 June 1727
1729 Sent to Irish College Poitiers by General Tamburini
1733-1734 He was sent to Salamanca (Irish Ecclesiastical Record)
1743 At the Waterford Residence

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of John Daniel Kelly and Helena née Roche
1700-1707 After First Vows he studied Philosophy and Theology at St Ambrose, Valladolid where he was Ordained 1707
1707-1711 Teaching Humanities at Valladolid
1711-1714 Chair of Philosophy at Bilbao
1714-1715 Tertianship
1715-1718 He was sent back to his Chair of Philosophy at Bilbao
1718-1721 Chair of Theology at Coruña
1721 Sent to Ireland and Waterford Residence and was appointed (15 September 1725) Secretary and Assistant with right of succession to the Mission Superior Anthony Knoles
1727 On the death of Knoles (14 August 1727) he became Vice-Superior of the Irish Mission, and held this Office until 1773. By his prudent government he kept his subjects free from participation in the disputes then rife amongst Catholics. He received many applications to establish houses of the Society in places with old-time Jesuit associations but by reason of the lack of Jesuits he could not accede to the requests from Limerick and Galway. In the end he was able to open the Galway Residence.
At the request of the bishops in Ireland assembled at Dublin he was able to bring influence from abroad to prevent the renewal of religious persecution. While on Visitation as Mission Superior to the Irish Colleges on the Continent, he was able to bring their perilous financial situation to the attention of the General, and thanks to his painstaking work, his successor was able to bring financial negotiations to a successful conclusion.
He was very popular with the clergy and people of Waterford who prevented his return to Spain when he had been named rector of the Irish College, Salamanca.
He died as a result of an accident returning from a sick call 03 October 1743 Dungarvan

◆ James B Stephenson SJ The Irish Jesuits Vol 1 1962

Ignatius Kelly alias Roche (1727-1733)

Ignatius Daniel Kelly, generally known in Spain and Ireland as Ignatius Roche, was the son of John Daniel Kelly, of Dungarvan, and Helena Roche. He was born at Dungarvan on or about 15th June, 1679, and entered the Society at Villagarcia in Castile on 17th November, 1698. He studied philosophy for three years, and did a four years' course of theology in the College of St Ambrose at, Valladolid, ending in 1707; after which he taught grammar for three years, and acted as Minister for one. From 1711 to 1714 he was Professor of Philosophy at Bilbao, and after an interruption of a year of third probation, he resumed his Chair of Philosophy at Bilbao for another three years, during which he made his solemn profession of four vows on 7th February, 1716. Then, after teaching theology at Coruna for two years (1718-20), he returned to Ireland early in 1721, and was stationed at Waterford. Having been appointed Secretary and Assistant to Fr Knoles, with right of succession (15th September, 1725), he became Vice-Superior of the Mission when Fr Knoles died on 14th August, 1727, and continued as such till 1733. By his prudent counsels he kept the Society free from participation in the internecine disputes then rife among Catholics. He received many applications from various places to establish Residences of the Society, but the fewness of subjects prevented compliance. The Residence of Galway, however, was re-opened in the summer of 1731, the bishops of Ireland, assembled in Dublin, requested him to use his influence abroad to thwart the hopes of the heretics, which he did with such success that the danger was averted. In 1631-32* he made a Visitation of the Irish College of Poitiers to settle the confused financial relations between it and the Irish Mission. He appealed often to be relieved of the government of the Mission, but his petitions were not heard until 1733. His end was in keeping with his life. He met with an accident on his way back from a sick call to a poor woman, and died soon after at Waterford on 1st October, 1743.

*Addendum for 1631-32 read 1731-32

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Ignatius Kelly 1679-1743
Ignatius Kelly, generally known in Spain and Ireland as Ignatius Roche, was born in Dungarvan in 1679. As was usual in those days, he did all his studies in Spain, where he was received into the Society in 1698. He was Professor of Theology in Bilbao and Corunna.

Having returned to Ireland he was stationed at Waterford. He acted as Socius to Fr Knoles and became Vice-Superior on his death. The following extract from a letter of his to Fr John Harrison, Santiago, 13th June 1727, will give an idea of the conditions of the time, and the various devices used in correspondence to conceal identities :
“I have written to you several times asking for news of your health, which may the Lord preserve to you for many years. Here we are few and frail. Mr Knoles is incapable of doing anything unless suffer. Senor Tamburini has relieved him of the charge of this poor Mission, and has placed it on my shoulders, and I assure you I am tired of it.I am sorry that I cannot give you a formal Patent to Dom Andrew Lynch, who will be the bearer of this. His parents are very respectable, and his parents have the necessary qualities to become an apprentice in your factory”.
In spite of the poor account that Fr Kelly gave of the state of the Mission, he was able to reopen the Galway Residence in 1729.

In 1733 he was relieved of office, and spent the next ten years in the ministry. He was Parish Priest of St Patrick’s Waterford from 1734-1742, and died on October 1st 1743, as a result of an accident occurred while returning from a sick call.

Kelly, Michael, 1802-1844, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1518
  • Person
  • 27 May 1802-16 November 1844

Born: 27 May 1802, Edermine, County Wexford
Entered: 31 August 1822, Montrouge, Paris, France - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 24 September 1836, Stonyhurst College, England
Died: 16 November 1844, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

Part of the Tullabeg community at the time of death

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Early education was at Clongowes before Ent.

Did Noviceship in France. The sent on Regency to Clongowes and made a Prefect there in 1835. He later became Minister there.
He was Ordained at Sonyhurst 24 September 1836 by Dr Briggs.
1843 he was appointed Minister at Tullabeg and died in that office. He was sent by the Superior to Dublin for medical attention, but he died at Gardiner St after a short stay there. He is buried in Glasnevin. He was a pious, observant, zealous and energetic man.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Michael Kelly 1802-1844
Fr Michael Kelly was born in Wexford in 1802 and educated at Clongowes.
He was ordained at Stonyhurst as a Jesuit, and in 1843 he was appointed Minister in Tullabeg, where he died during his period of office. As he was not feeling too well, Superiors sent him to Dublin to consult a doctor, but he died in Gardiner Street on November 15th 1844, and was buried in Glasnevin.

Knowles, Anthony, 1648-1727, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1546
  • Person
  • 10 April 1648-14 August 1727

Born: 10 April 1648, Co Waterford
Entered: 12 June 1666, Santiago de Compostella, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: 1675, Salamanca
Final Vows: 15 August 1684
Died: 14 August 1727, Co Waterford - Romanae Province (ROM)

Alias Sherlock
Superior of Mission 15 May 1694-14 August 1727

In Society Studied 3 years Philosophy and 4 Theology. Taught Grammar, Moral Theology and Philosophy
“Thrifts Index to Irish Wills iii.60 give date 1731 of will of Rev Anthgony Knowles R Catholic priest, Waterford”
12/06/1666 Compostella CAST; FV Sherlock and Sherlog 15 August 1684 at Monforte - “Sherlogus” 18 August 1684; RIP 14 August 1727 Ireland
1672 “de Sherloque” at Tuetensi
1675 “de Sherloque” at Salamanca in Theology
1678 “Sherlog” at Medina CAST
1681 “Sherlog” at Valladolid
1685 “Sherlog” at Monforte College teaching Philosophy and Moral Theology. Was a Missionary. Talent for higher subjects. Not 1690 Catalogue
1708 1714 1717 Catalogue Was Minister and Vice-Rector, now Superior of Mission
“Anthony Knowles SJ, Superior of the Jesuits in Ireland sends John Higgins to Rector of Irish Seminary in Rome, praying that he may be admitted as soon as possible 07 November 1720. He sent Henry Marshall 04 June 1721; Thomas Stritch 21 July 1724. He always begins “cum studiorum causa Romam mittanus” (Arch Rom Coll Lib 19 pp46, 47, 49)
“Sherlog in Bibliotheca Hispan was highly esteemed for the excellence of his erudition at the time when we were in the same school.”

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Professor of Belles-lettres, Theology and Philosophy for fifteen years.
1694-1727 Superior of Irish Mission
1727 Imprisoned
Short abstracts from his letters 1694-1714, dated mostly from Waterford are given in Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS. These letters expose a terrible system of cruel persecution carried on against Catholics, especially against the education of their children. In one letter dated 26 December 1696, he says that he had been committed to prison with all the clergy of Waterford diocese four weeks previously, and the same had happened in other parts of Ireland. The imprisonment appears to have lasted over thirteen weeks.
The Irish Ecclesiastical Record, March 1874, mentions a letter from Father Roche, dated 13 June 1727, which states : Here we are, few and frail. Father Knowles is incapable of doing anything, unless suffer. Tamburini has relieved him of his poor mission, and has placed it on my shoulders, and I assure you I am tired of it”.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
After First Vows he spent a short Regency at Santander and was then sent for studies in Philosophy to Oviedo and in Theology to Royal College Salamanca and he was Ordained there 1675.
1676-1679 Sent to Medina del Campo teaching Latin
1679-1680 Minister and Vice-Rector at Monforte
1680-1682 Sent successively to St Ignatius Valladolid
1682-1686 Sent back to Monforte to teach Philosophy and Moral Theology
1687 Sent to Ireland and to Waterford.
1694 Appointed Superior of Irish Mission 15 May 1694 by the General, Tirso González de Santalla. He remained in office for the rest of his life (33 years) was carried out in the darkest of penal times. Yet he not only maintained a foot-hold for the mission in face of overwhelming odds but assured the succession of the Jesuits through the recruitment of worthy candidates.
General Tirso González de Santalla said of him “I knew him well in Spain, and I know him to be a learned, industrious, religious and pious man, eminently equipped with all the talents and virtues attributed to him”. The Superiorship of Knoles was one that might daunt the bravest spirit, but for thirty three years he withstood the first fury of the Penal Laws against religion. He was arrested in November 1596 at Waterford and imprisoned for thirteen months. At the start of 1713 he was in the strictest hiding, and by 1714 known to be hiding at New Ross. In spite of all this hardship, be built up the Irish Mission again slowly. On 06/12/1675 he used his influence abroad to prevent the King’s assent being given to a shameful Bill passed by the Irish Parliament against Catholic Clergy. In 1725 when his health was failing he secured as Secretary and Assistant Ignatius Daniel Kelly with right of succession. Not long after he was stricken by a deep paralysis and he died in Waterford 14 August 1727.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ The Irish Jesuits Vol 1 1962
Anthony Knoles (1694-1727)
Antony Knoles was born in Waterford on 10th April, 1648. In Spain he was called Sherlock, which was probably his mother's surname. He was admitted into the Society at Santiago on 12th June, 1666. After teaching Latin at Santander, he studied philosophy at Oviedo and theology in the Royal College of Salamanca. On the completion of these studies in 1676, he taught Latin at Medina del Campo for three years, acted as Minister and Vice-Rector of the College of Monforte for one year, and taught philosophy in the College of St Ignatius at Valladolid for two years. He then returned to Monforte, where he lectured on moral theology for four years (1682-86), and made his solemn profession of four vows on 15th August, 1684. He arrived in Ireland early in 1687, and was stationed at Waterford. He was appointed Superior of the Mission on 15th May, 1694, by the General, Fr Thyrsus Gonzalez, who says of him: “I knew him well in Spain, and I know him to be a learned, industrious, religious, and pious man, eminently equipped with all the talents and virtues attributed to him”. The future Fr Knoles had to face was one to daunt the bravest spirit, but for thirty-three years he withstood the first fury of the penal laws against religion. He himself was arrested in November, 1696, at Waterford, and imprisoned for thirteen months. At the beginning of 1713 he was in strict concealment, and early in 1714 he was hiding near New Ross. Yet, in spite of persecution and great poverty, he maintained his ground and built up the Mission again slowly. On 6th December, 1723, he used his influence abroad, not without success, to prevent the King of England's assent being given to a shameful bill passed by the Irish Parliament against the Catholic clergy. In 1725, when his health was fast failing, he secured the appointment of Fr Ignatius Roche as Secretary and Assistant, with right of succession. Not long after he was stricken down with paralysis, and after lingering on for several months he died at Waterford on 14th August, 1727.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Antony Knoles 1648-1727
Antony Knoles was born in Waterford in 1646 and entered the Society at Santiago in 1666. He spent some years professing philosophy and theology until 1687 when he returned to Ireland.

Appointed Superior of the Mission his term of office lasted the unprecedented length of 33 years, the lifetime of his Master. He suffered the first fury of the Penal Laws against the Catholic religion.

Arrested in Waterford in 1696, he was imprisoned for 13 months. The years 1713 and 1714 he spent in hiding, yet in spite of persecution he built up the Mission. By means of the Society on the continent and through the interventions of the Catholic powers, France Spain and Portugal, in 1723 he prevented a very obnoxious Bill being passed by the Irish Parliament against the Catholic clergy.

In 1727 he laid down the burden of office and not long after on August 15th the worn out warrior of Christ died from paralysis.

Lawler, Brendan, 1909-1993, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/515
  • Person
  • 29 October 1909-16 June 1993

Born: 29 October 1909, Bunclody, County Wexford
Entered: 01 September 1926, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 17 July 1938, Innsbruck, Austria
Final Vows: 02 February 1944, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 16 June 1993, Our Lady’s Hospice, Dublin

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

Eldest Brother of Donald - RIP 1984 and Ray - RIP 2001

Early education at Clongowes Wood College Sj

by 1933 at Valkenburg, Limburg, Netherlands (GER I) studying
by 1936 at Innsbruck, Tirol, Austria (ASR) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 8th Year No 4 1933

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

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 77 : Summer 1994 & Interfuse No 82 : September 1995


Brendan Lawler (1909-1993)

29th Oct. 1909; Born, Bunclody, Co. Wexford
Early education: Clongowes Wood College
Ist Sept. 1926: Entered the Society at Tullabeg
1928 - 1932: Rathfarnham - studying Science (biology) at UCD
1932 - 1935: Valkenburg, Holland, studying Philosophy
1935 - 1938: Innsbruck, studying Theology
17th July 1938: Ordained at Innsbruck
1939 - 1940: Tertianship, Rathfarnham
1940 - 1941: Tullabeg, Professor of Cosmology and Biology
1941 - 1943: 35 Lower Leeson Street, Private Study
1943 - 1962: Tullabeg - Professor of Cosmology and Biology. (From 1953 - '59 he was Rector)
1962 - 1968: Loyola House - Socius to Provincial
1968 - 1992; Milltown Park: Secretary, Institute of Theology/Philosophy, and Lecturer (Philosophy), (1982 Assistant Registrar)
1993: Cherryfield Lodge. Hospitalised in The Royal, Donnybrook and then in Our Lady's Hospice.
16th June 1993. Died Our Lady's Hospice.

For many members of the Irish Province the name of Brendan Lawlor is synonymous with memories of the philosophate in Tullabeg, Once can see him still on a dark day in the tiered lecture-room, reading from the yellowing pages of his cosmology notes or play-acting as to whether the continuum could be found in the drawer or under the table. These memories can be crowned with those of drowsy afternoon sessions with diverting slides portraying the innards of the amoeba. In retrospect one can only admire the patience and endurance of those who, after years of no mean scholastic attainment, accepted from the Society the “world without event” of life in Tullabeg.

Brendan had a distinguished scholastic career behind him when he came to Tullabeg as Professor of Cosmology and Biology in the autumn of 1943. He was one of those “stars” who had been picked out for a four-year Juniorate (1928-1932), ending up with a MSc in biology. In the autumn of 1932 he made his way with Con Lonergan to do his philosophy with the exiled Germans in Valkenburg, and then in 1935 both of them went on to join Donal O'Sullivan for theology in Innsbruck. It was typical of the man that he could spend those years so close to the drama of the rise of Hitler and the Anschluss of Austria and so rarely speak of these momentous events afterwards. Even the theology of the times was rarely mentioned by him, though Innsbruck in those years was the centre of “kerygmatic theology” and of the liturgical and catechetical renewal spearheaded by JA Jungmann. Within a short time of Brendan's leaving Innsbruck the house in Sillgasse was turned into the headquarters of the Gestapo, but Brendan by that time was safely back in Ireland doing further studies in Leeson Street.

It will come as a surprise to most people to realize that by far the longest period Brendan spent in one place was not Tullabeg but Milltown Park. He spent nineteen years in Tullabeg at a stretch, being Rector there from 1953 to 1959. He left the midlands in 1962 to become Socius to the Provincial (1962-68), and after those six years in Eglinton Road was assigned to Milltown Park, where he was to spend the next quarter of a century. For many years during this period he did some teaching in the area of logic, but his principal task was to look after the administrative staff of the Institute and to keep the scholastic records of the students. He was also responsible for organizing what came to be called “Saturday Theology”, a very successful programme of lectures for extra-mural students which, over a period of twenty years, introduced innumerable religious and laity to the mysteries of Vatican II.

For a person who in many respects was the quintessence of predictability, Brendan could be a source of hidden talents. The last instance of this came about only a few weeks before his death, when his community was presented with an amazingly competent landscape which Brendan had painted during occupational therapy in the hospice. Who would have thought that we had another Paul Henry in our midst? Then there was his early interest in the scriptures, which eventually bore fruit in his book, Epistles in Focus, widely read in Ireland at the time, and for many years the only scholarly book on scripture by a member of the Province. During his years as Professor in Tullabeg, he rarely, if ever, published anything in philosophy, but in his final years in Milltown he had some published work in Milltown Studies, includ ing one article of which he was particularly proud, “The Star of Implication” (Milltown Studies, no.5).

Those who knew Brendan in the two main periods of his life, that in Tullabeg and that in Milltown, will have been struck by the contrast between the two, especially if one was a scholastic in the earlier period. In Tullabeg he seemed constrained by the stricter regime of the times. In Milltown his natural humour and spirit of companionship blossomed, so that he became one of the most appreciated members of the community. He maintained amazingly good health, even after retirement, and took a great interest in all that was happening in the world, not least in the world of sport, Brendan before the television-set, with cigarette in hand, was one of the fixtures of Milltown life during those years. This continued up to the time that the onset of Parkinson's necessitated his hospitalization. The decline that set in developed with a speed that surprised us all. The disease took him from us within a matter of months, and so he died at the impressive age of 83. May he rest
in peace.

Ray Moloney

Lawler, Donald, 1911-1984, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/229
  • Person
  • 02 March 1911-04 December 1984

Born: 02 March 1911, Bunclody, County Wexford
Entered: 01 September 1928, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 08 January 1944, Sydney, Australia
Final Vows: 03 February 1947, Wah Yan College, Hong Kong
Died: 04 December 1984, Lisheen, Rathcoole, County Dublin

Chaplain in the Second World War.

Middle Brother of Brendan - RIP 1993 and Ray - RIP 2001;

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Transcribed HIB to HK - 03 December 1966; HK to MAC-HK; MAC-HK to CHN

by 1937 at Aberdeen, Hong Kong - Regency
by 1941 at Pymble NSW, Australia - studying

◆ Hong Kong Catholic Archives :
Death of Father Donald Lawler, S.J.

Father Donald Lawler, SJ, formerly of Wah Yan College, Hong Kong, died in Ireland on Tuesday, 4 December 1984, after a very long illness, aged 73.

Father Lawler was born in Ireland in 1911 and joined the Jesuits in 1928. He came to Hong Kong in 1936. After two years of study of Cantonese, he taught for two years in Wah Yan College, Hong Kong. He then studied theology in Australia and was ordained priest there in 1944. After a final year of Jesuit formation in Ireland, he returned to Hong Kong in 1946 and was senior Science Master in Wah Yan College, Hong Kong, for thirty years. He suffered a stroke in 1976, and for the rest of his life was as invalid sinking steadily into ever more complete helplessness as the years went by. About five years ago he was brought by hospital plane to Ireland, where the care of his elder brother, also a Jesuit, helped to mitigate the hardship imposed such prolonged illness.

Death came gently.
Sunday Examiner Hong Kong - 14 December 1984

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 20th Year No 2 1945

Frs. J. Collins, D. Lawler and P. Toner, of the Hong Kong Mission, who finished theology at Pymble last January, were able to leave for Ireland some time ago, and are expected in Dublin after Easter.

Irish Province News 22nd Year No 1 1947

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

Irish Province News 60th Year No 1 2 1985


Fr Donald Lawlor (1911-1928-1984) (Macau-Hong Kong)

2nd March 1911: born in Bunclody, Co Wexford. 1st September 1928: entered SJ. 1928-30 Tullabeg, noviciate. 1930-33 Rathfarnham, juniorate (physics and chemistry to B. Sc.), 1933-36 Tullabeg, philosophy. 1936-40 Hong Kong (study of Cantonese. 1938-40 teaching in Wah Yan College, Hong Kong). 1940-45 Australia, theology (Pymble, NSW: ordained priest in 1944). 1945-46 Rathfarnham, tertianship. 1946-78 Wah Yan College, Hong Kong, teaching science chiefly. 1979-84 Lisheen nursing home, Rathcoole, Co Dublin.

The following notice of Fr Lawler, written by Fr Alan Birmingham (M-HK), has been copied from Macau-Hong Kong Province Letter no. 265 (12: 1984):

On Tuesday 4th December, Fr Vincent Murphy telephoned from Ireland to tell us that Don Lawler had died a few hours earlier. Everyone's first reaction was one of gratitude for the ending of Don's long Purgatory on earth. There was of course shock in learning that the companion of so many years was no longer in this world, but it would have been hypocritical conventionalism to pretend to sorrow over his death. The Don of the crystal clear mind, the Don of the lithe vigorous body, the Don of unquestioning independence, had gone years before. Death had brought to an end joyless years of fading powers.
Don Lawler received his schooling at Wicklow Convent and at Clongowes Wood College. I first met him when we arrived together to start our noviceship at Tullabeg. His elder brother Brendan took his first vows on the morning after our arrival and he stayed on in Tullabeg for a short time to act as Don's angelus, The Don of noviceship days was in most ways very like the Don of full maturity. He already had a sturdy distaste for loose thinking and for conventional expression or manifestation of piety. Eschewing gush, he had an unrivalled grasp of the theological and spiritual principles underlying noviceship training and the whole Jesuit life. He took his vows in the ambulacrum in Emo Park (newly acquired as the noviciate house) on 2nd September 1930.
He might have been miserable if he had been asked to do an arts degree in the juniorate. It is hard to imagine Don labouring over Wordsworth or Mrs Gaskell. In fact, he worked for a BSc in physics and chemistry. Clear theory derived from exact experiment was what he seemed made for. Philosophy also suited him; Platonism would have seemed to him to be merely sublime vagueness. If he had been born in another age, Descartes' clear and distinct ideas' might have won him: but as it was he found satisfaction in the highly rational Aristotelianism taught by Fr E Coyne. Philosophy always remained one of his major interests.
He had always been deeply interested in the missions, and he felt that one of his dearest dreams was being fulfilled when he was chosen for Hong Kong, along with Paddy Walsh, in 1936.
My abiding friendship with Don dates from that time. In earlier years I had been mildly alarmed by his ruthless intellectualism and his black-and-white judgements on right and wrong, beauty and ugliness, sense and folly. A month with him in a two-man cabin in the Sua Maru was enough to teach me that I had found a true comrade, able to take peculiarities in his stride, and ready to depend on others and to have others depend on him. I never had to alter that judgement.
After two years of not very successful drudgery in the language school, there came the year in Wah Yan in the old Robinson Road building. In that year Don was not merely a teacher. He was a vigorous sportsmaster. He was deeply interested in the boys. He took part in nearly every school activity. In addition he began to make numerous friends round the city. Already, on the way to Hong Kong, he had been the social centre of the ship. Now he seemed to be on to becoming one of the people that everyone knows, almost a second and more scientific Fr George Byrne. The vitality he showed in that year was something unimagined by those who knew him only in later years..
In the summer of 1939, he and I were expecting to sail for Ireland, but the necessary documents did not arrive until later than the date on which Joe Howatson and Seán Turner had sailed in the previous year. When the documents did arrive, late in June, they contained bad news. Don was offered either immediate return to Ireland with removal from the Hong Kong Mission, or a ‘fourth year’ in Wah Yan. Without hesitation he chose the second alternative, and at once set about organising the tasks of the coming year, notably the forthcoming St Vincent de Paul Bazaar (the predecessor of the Caritas Bazaar).
Normally a fourth year in the colleges is a relatively unimportant setback not worthy of obituary mention. Don's fourth year was an exceptionally hard blow, and seems to have changed his whole life. In summer 1939, war was certain. If he did not sail at once, he would not return to Ireland for theology, and the suddenness of the change made this hard to bear. More important probably was the suggestion that he should consider leaving the Mission. He had always cherished missionary hopes; now a cloud had come over them. Joe Howatson, who probably knew Don better than any other Hong Kong Jesuit, once told me that Don had taken the fourth year as a condemnation of all his past expansiveness. Certainly, when I met him again after tertianship, all that side of his life seemed to have vanished, and he had largely withdrawn from the city into Wah Yan. He made friends through his educational committee work and through his abiding interest in games, but the old expansiveness was gone. I never discovered why he got the fourth year. To me he had seemed a model of what a scholastic in the way a college should be. My guess was some of his superiors had worked through mild suggestions and gentle hints, regarding these as sufficient indications of what they wanted to be done. Don, however, was never sensitive to hints. Anything less scientific than a clear and direct statement seemed contumacious when he was quite unconscious of ignoring orders.This, however, is only a guess.
In 1940, he went to Australia for theology, and he was ordained there in January 1944. He liked Australia, and he had many friends there from juniorate and philosophy days. In 1945 he went to Ireland for tertianship.
In 1946 he returned to Hong Kong to start the long career as senior science master that was to last till his strength ailed thirty years later. This was the main work of his Jesuit life, but there is little to be said about it. He was an outstanding and extremely conscientious teacher of physics to the higher forms, and he played a considerable part in the organisation of scientific teaching in the schools of Hong Kong. He was also always ready to take on the instruction of more intellectual converts whom others regarded as formidable. One of these converts is now a Dominican priest. In the 1960s one of the professors in the University of Hong Kong was waging an all too successful war for atheism. Don took him on in a radio debate and by cool and courteous logic won a striking victory that helped to diminish the professor's influence. This debate was almost his only dramatic incursion into public life in his long years as a priest-teacher.
In community life, however, he was no hermit. He was always ready to expound at length any theological, philosophical or scientific theory that came up. Sometimes his expositions would develop nearly into a lecture, but it was a good lecture, clear, orderly, full, and devoid of rhetorical irrelevance or dialectical tricks.
Over the years he was an unremitting student of the Bible, reading it over and over again. He was also careful to keep abreast of scientific progress. For diversion, more and more as the years went by, he turned to scientific fiction, the frivolous counterpart of his work. to him mere whimsy.
No account of Don would be completed without some reference to his congenital tidiness with both time and things. Every action seemed to have its exact unchangeable time - his shower for instance at exactly 6.30 pm. If any visitor to his room moved an ashtray on his desk, Don would put it back where it had been, not chidingly, but because the ashtray had its own unchangeable place. In 1976 he had his first stroke. For a time he tried to carry on, hoping that by using a microphone he could still talk to his classes, but this proved impossible. After a second stroke he was given generous hospitality for some months by the ever-generous Columban Sisters in Ruttonjee Sanatorium. He returned to Wah Yan and was able to take a slight part in community life. He managed to attend his Golden Jubilee dinner for a short period. He was able to concelebrate Mass on extreme invalid terms. He could still read, and a fading memory enabled him to read and reread his favourite scientific fiction books with fresh interest at every reading. Another stroke transformed him into a complete invalid, and he was brought to St Paul's Hospital, Causeway Bay. His hospital room was comfortable and he had plenty of visitors, the Columban Sisters being exceptionally kind. Yet his complete dependence on others must have been galling to one of his independent character. His Cantonese had never been very good, and as his voice was failing he found it almost impossible to communicate with the hospital staff. It was decided that he would be happier in Ireland. He was far too ill to travel by an ordinary plane, but helpful authorities agreed to give him space in a space in a military Red Cross hospital plane. In Ireland, he went first to St Vincent's Hospital and then to Lisheen Nursing Home, Rathcoole, co. Dublin. His brother Brendan and Fr Vincent Murphy were assiduous visitors, despite ever increasing difficulty in communication.
He sank slowly but steadily. Those who visited him during holidays in Ireland brought sadder and sadder news, yet he did not seem to suffer much physically and the gradual dimming of his consciousness of this world probably lessened mental suffering. Always we were waiting for the last news. It came on December 4th.
He worked hard. He suffered much. God be with him. May he be with God.

Lawler, Raymond,1921-2001, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/627
  • Person
  • 28 May 1921-14 April 2001

Born: 28 May 1921, Bunclody, County Wexford
Entered: 07 September 1938, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1952, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1956, Clongowes Wood College SJ
Died: 14 April 2001, Clongowes Wood College, Naas, Co Kildare

Youngest Brother of Brendan - RIP 1993 and Donald - RIP 1984

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1982 at Regis Toronto, Canada (CAN S) Sabbatical

◆ Companions in Mission1880- Zambia-Malawi (ZAM) Obituaries :
Fr Raymond Lawler was born in Co. Wexford, Ireland on 28 May 1921. Fr Raymond (Ray) came to Clongowes Wood College, a Jesuit boarding school, as a small boy of eleven years. Little did he realise that he would spend almost half of his life there as teacher, prefect of studies, higher line prefect, and finally as third line Spiritual Father which he was when he died at the age of 80. Clongowes (CWC) was the love of his life (apart from golf) and it was a mutual relationship between him and the successive generations of boys – always a difficult and critical body, who held him in high esteem. After the funeral Mass, members of his family and students of the school carried his coffin along the Third Line gallery where he had passed so often in the final six years of his ministry. A guard of honour was formed by present and past pupils in a moving tribute to someone who had come to mean so much to so many young people over so many years.

Ray followed the normal formation of the Society: humanities (BA honours in Latin and French), philosophy, regency in Crescent, Limerick and CWC, and theology in Milltown Park where he was ordained on the feast of St Ignatius in 1952. After tertianship, he was posted to CWC as teacher and then prefect of studies for eight years. An official visitor from Rome to the Province did some shuffling of personnel and Ray found himself changed to Belvedere College for two years. He returned quietly to CWC in 1964 again as higher line prefect (1964 - 68) and teacher from 1968 to 1981.

Now at the age of sixty, Ray had a sabbatical in Toronto. Then came a big change in his life when he opted to come to Zambia, Africa where he spent two years teaching French and Scripture to the novices in Lusaka. Fr Bob Kelly went on sabbatical for a year and left his gleaming new car in charge of Ray whose talents did not extend to motor maintenance! But this was ideal for Ray to ferry himself and his clubs to the nearby golf course. He had a passion for birds and was appreciative of anyone who helped him add to his beautiful collection of Zambian bird stamps.

When he returned to Ireland he worked in Tullabeg as Director of the Spiritual Exercises for a year followed by ten years at Gardiner Street Church as parish chaplain. Like a captain viewing the horizon from the bridge of his ship, Ray looked south to his beloved CWC and at the age 74 moved there to be third line spiritual Father.

He enjoyed good health to the end. He preached on Holy Thursday to the past pupils who were on retreat in CWC and played golf all Good Friday afternoon. He died in his room on Holy Saturday following a massive heart attack, on the 14 April 2001 at the age of 80.

Ray was a man who found God in all things whether playing cards, scrabble, chess, whether on the golf course, whether teaching, whatever he was doing he was never far from God. Before he left for Zambia, the school made him a presentation of a set of golf clubs. The school secretary said in his speech, ‘If there were a university degree for gentleness, I think that Father Lawler would have a PhD’. His character was summed up in the phrase “a lovable and loving person”.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 108 : Special Edition 2001


Fr Raymond (Ray) Lawler (1921-2001)

28th May 1921: Born in Bunclody
Early education at Clongowes Wood College
7th Sept 1938: Entered the Society at Emo
8th Sept 1940: First Vows at Emo
1940 - 1943: Rathfarnham - Studying Arts at UCD
1943 - 1946: Tullabeg - Studying Philosophy
1946 - 1948: Crescent College - Regency
1948 - 1949: Clongowes Wood College - Regency
1949 - 1953: Milltown - Studying Theology
31 July 1952: Ordained at Milltown
1953 - 1954: Tertianship at Rathfarnham
1954 - 1962: Clongowes Wood College - Teacher
2nd Feb 1956: Final Vows
1956 - 1962: Clongowes - Prefect of Studies
1962 - 1964: Belvedere - Teacher
1964 - 1968: Clongowes - Higher Line Prefect
1968 - 1981: Clongowes - Teacher
1981 - 1982: Sabbatical Year
1982 - 1984: Zambia
1984 - 1985: Tullabeg - Director of Spiritual Exercises
1985 - 1995: Gardiner Street - Parish Chaplain
1995 - 2001: Clongowes - Third Line Spiritual Father; Assisted in Cherryfield
14th April 2001: Died Clongowes Wood College

Ray enjoyed good health to the end. He preached on Holy Thursday to the Past Pupils, who were on Retreat in Clongowes, and played golf on Good Friday afternoon. He died in his room on Holy Saturday following a massive heart attack. He will be greatly missed by all, but particularly by his beloved Third Liners.

Michael Sheil writes

When Ray Lawler came to Clongowes as a young boy of 11 in 1932, he had already spent 7 years in boarding school. At the tender age of 4 he had started his academic career in Dominican Convent, Wicklow. When he died suddenly in Clongowes at Easter, he had experienced over three-quarters of a century of institutional living.

He once described his birthplace, Bunclody, as the back of beyond (he was preaching at the funeral Mass of his neighbour and friend Dr Tom Murphy, former President of UCD, who lived “a bit beyond that”!) But he was always loyal to Wexford and rejoiced when good fortune came the way of their teams,

After leaving Clongowes, where he figured prominently at cricket and rugby, Ray followed the usual pattern of Jesuit formation in the 40s and 50s, studying Arts at UCD, philosophy in Tullabeg. He did his regency in Crescent College and Clongowes and was ordained on 31 July 1952. Afterwards Tertianship in Rathfarnham followed and then began his long association with his beloved Clongowes.

He filled a number of posts there, beginning as a Teacher for 5 years and then as Prefect of Studies for a further 3, until in the general mass migrations which signalled Fr Visitor's (McMahon) passage through the Province in 1962, Ray moved to Belvedere,

My own memories of him go way back to 1949 when, in my first year in the Third Line in Clongowes, we used to hear everyone talking about the marvellous Mr Lawler, who had left the year before. For he had just finished his regency there. In my last two years, I had him for Latin and French and Religion - and was able to realize for myself just why he had been held in such high esteem by that most discerning - if not downright difficult, critical body - the students themselves!

After two short years in Belvedere, Ray returned for what was to be his longest stint in Clongowes - 17 years, until 1981. He began as Higher Line Prefect ( 4 years) and rejoined the teaching staff for the remainder of that time. He was an excellent teacher of French and duly coached rugby and cricket (he played cricket regularly for the local club, North Kildare.) But it was during this time that he fell in love...he discovered the joys of golf! He became a regular sight on the College's golf course and competed frequently in competitions in Naas Golf Club. One year he came home with no less than 5 turkeys won there. And the school's S.R.P.A. (The Society for the Relief of the Poor and Aged - founded by Fr Brian Cullen) was the happy beneficiary.

He was still here when I returned as Higher Line Prefect in 1975 and was a marvellous companion in Community .... and I don't ever remember getting the better of him in a game of golf! Before the golf course was as good as it is today, he used to practise hitting golf bails from the Third Line rugby pitches on to the cricket oval - in all kinds of weather. I remember one day taking a Senior Rugby Practice in miserable, coid, sleety weather. After a while the Captain dared to suggest that we were only wasting our time, for it was too cold to do anything really useful. But I insisted that we might have to play a Cup match in such conditions (as indeed turned out to be the case - it even snowed!). So we battled on. However, after a while, the Captain approached me again and said, “Look, Fr Lawler has gone in!” “All right”, I said, “if it's too cold for Fr Lawler, then it's too cold for us!” And so in we went!

Six years ago we both returned together for what was to be such a wonderful Indian summer of his life. The story is told of how a fellow-Jesuit, on meeting Ray shortly after that change to CWC was announced, said that he had heard that it had taken him only 5 minutes to accept to come back here as Spiritual Father to the Third Line. The story goes that Ray got quite angry at the suggestion and protested that that was an awful thing to say about him. His companion - unused to see the usually placid Ray showing anger - back-pedalled a bit and said that it was only what he had heard from someone else. But Ray was only having him on - and to put him out his agony explained that 5 minutes was a gross exaggeration - it had taken him only 5 seconds! Just after he died, someone said: Surely he is in beaven - to which the reply came back: Sure he arrived in heaven when he came back to Clongowes! That speaks wonders for the spirit which he helped to encourage. It also means that the boys themselves had a part to play in making him so happy - in making him what he was - a lovable and loving person.

When he left CWC in 1981 to go to Zambia - the school made Fr Lawler a presentation of - surprise, surprise! - a set of clubs ... for that, even then, was his great pastime love. In his speech in the Concourse, the School Secretary said something which I never forgot - and which summed Ray up to perfection. “If there were a University degree for gentleness - I think that Fr Lawler would have a PhD.!” For that was indeed one of his great qualities.

On his return to Clongowes in 1995 he became Spiritual Father (or, as some used to say, Spiritual Grandfather!) and he became a central figure in the lives of very many young boys - some of them desperately homesick - and of their parents. The testimony of the great number of letters of sympathy written to the Community bears witness to this. His night prayer with Third Line was spiritual and deeply thought out - informal and always interesting - relevant and touching the lives of Third Liners where they were. How appropriate was it - however much it brought a lump to the throat - to see him on the recent RTE programme, leading this year's Opening Assembly last September, for what was to be the last time - reminding the assembled school of the importance of what really brought the school community together - when they gather to give thanks and glory to God.

St Ignatius of Loyola wanted his companions to be able to find God in all things. And, surely, didn't Ray do just that?! Whether playing cards - scrabble - chess - whether on the golf-course (as he was on the very day before he died) - whether teaching the yoyo (the very first online purchase made by CWC on the internet was yoyo string!) whatever Ray was doing - wherever he was - he was never far from God. For God was never far from him. Psalm 138 (139) was his favourite and he often quoted the lines: “It was you who created my being... ...I thank you for the wonder of my being, for the wonders of all your creation”. The Psalm ends with the words: “See that I follow not the wrong path and lead me in the path of life eternal”.

And so God did come to lead Ray home - as quietly as he had lived - in the silence of a Holy Saturday morning. As the Church waited to celebrate again the great Feast of Christ's Resurrection Ray left for a better place. Although his funeral took place during the school holidays at Easter, the College Chapel was full for Mass. Afterwards, members of his family and students of the school carried his coffin along the Third Line gallery (where he had passed so often in the final six years of his ministry.) A guard of honour was formed by present and past pupils in a moving tribute to someone who had come to mean so much to so many young people over so many years. In Clongowes Ray continues to be an inspiration to his Brethren who remember with gratitude and affection his pleasant companionship. And his memory will long be held in reverence in the school where he spent nearly half of his long and full life.

Long, William, 1616-1685, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1592
  • Person
  • 20 March 1616-24 January 1685

Born: 20 March 1616, Dublin
Entered: 15 May 1639, Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province BELG)
Ordained: 05 April 1645, Douai, France
Final Vows: 06 December 1656
Died: 24 January 1685, Dublin Residence

Parents Richard and Margaret Frende
Studied Grammar, Humanities and Philosophy under the Jesuits in Ireland - Fr Henry Cavell
Admitted by Provincial Robert Nugent
1642 At Lille repeating Philosophy
1645 At Douai in 3rd year Theology
1648 At Wexford
1649 Not in Catalogue but in the 1678 Archdekin edition said to be Residing at Dublin
1650 In Ireland, is a Minister and Teacher
1666 ROM Catalogue Confessor at Dublin Residence - catechising and administering sacs. On the Mission 18 years

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Studied Humanities and two years Philosophy before Ent. Knew Irish, English, French and Latin.
Taught Humanities for three years,
1650 Came to Irish Mission and was a Minister at Wexford (HIB CAT 1650 - ARSI) A very religious and zealous man.
1659-1669 He converted many in Wexford and Dublin.
1660 In the Dublin Residence
(cf Father Morris’s “Excerpta”; Foley’s Collectanea)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Richard and Margaret née Frende
Had previously studied Philosophy under the Jesuits (Henry Cavell) in Dublin before Ent 1639 Tournai
1641-1645 After First Vows he resumed studies at Lille and Douai where he was Ordained 05 April 1645
1646 Sent to Ireland and Wexford until the fall of Wexford to Cromwell. During that “commonwealth” he exercised his ministry in Co. Dublin and after the Restoration he lived in the Dublin Residence where for many years he was Procurator. His preferred ministry was Catechising the poor and ignorant. he died in Dublin 24 January 1685, and was buried in St. Catherine's churchyard

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
LONG,WILLIAM, was born in 1601. Pere Verdier, who visited him at Wexford in 1649, describes him as “valde religiosus”. In the sequel he obtained distinguished reputation as a Catechist. I find him actively engaged at Dublin in 1669, in the work of the ministry.

McLoughlin, Thomas J, 1886-1963, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1729
  • Person
  • 25 October 1886-12 June 1963

Born: 25 October 1886, Clifden, County Galway
Entered: 07 September 1904, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 15 August 1919, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final vows: 15 August 1922
Died: 12 June 1963, St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, Australia - Australiae Province (ASL)

Transcribed HIB to ASL : 05 April 1931

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1909 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) studying
Came to Australia for Regency 1911
by 1918 at The Seminary, Kandy, Sri Lanka Mission (BELG) teaching at Seminary
by 1921 at Drongen Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Tom McLoughlin was educated at CBC Wexford until he went to Clongowes Wood, Dublin, 1901-04. He entered the Irish noviciate at Tullabeg, 7 September 1904, and continued with his juniorate studies at the same place, 1904-06. His philosophy was at Louvain, 1908-11, before regency at St Ignatius' College, Riverview, 1911-16, where he taught and was third prefect. He directed the junior debating and was master-in-charge of the library Theology followed at Kurseorag, Kandy, and Milltown Park, 1916-20. Tertianship was at Tronchiennes .
McLoughlin returned to Australia to teach and was first prefect and rowing master at Riverview, 1921-25. He was not suited to the office of first prefect because he was not the man to insist on discipline with the tact and authority of one more suited to that work. His only interest in games was that Riverview was playing, and he wanted them to win.
He was sent to St Patrick’s College, 1925-35, where he taught French. During this time he also edited the “Patrician”. He was considered a good teacher, making French easy and entertaining for students. His classes were delivered with an almost flippant spontaneity that concealed the careful preparation he put into them. There was always the atmosphere of friendliness and warmth to his classes. He could be strict, but liked incidents to be finished immediately He was a keen handball player and enjoyed a game with the boys. His contact with the Old Boys was much appreciated, and his memory of their activities was most impressive. He received many visits from them. He vigorously promoted the Old Collegians' Association.
From 1936 until his death he returned to teach at Riverview and to edit “Our Alma Mater”. He was also prefect of studies, 1937-50, and chaplain to the Old Boys from 1950.
He was one of the great institutions at Riverview, a much respected friend and patron of the Old Boys. He taught French with some success for many years. He was most thorough and painstaking in everything he undertook, yet he was not at all fussy, a good disciplinarian, very kind and understanding. He was a good influence on every hoy he taught.
He showed concern for those in special need, teaching the lower classes by choice. Every night he corrected many French exercises and prepared live classes for the next day. His work on “Our Alma Mater” was also a nocturnal task. One edition had 2,000 names of Old Boys. He had no secretary. He was a great letter writer.
In his declining years he continued to look after the alumni, supervise a few study periods, hear confessions, and edit “Our Alma Mater”. Towards the end he sustained a heart attack from which he died. Over 1,000 attended his funeral Mass at St Mary's Church, North Sydney, some travelling hundreds of miles to he present. The 300 senior boys of Riverview lined the roadway at the cemetery.

McNamara, Brian, 1933-1989, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/295
  • Person
  • 09 May 1933-01 October 1989

Born: 09 May 1933, Dublin
Entered: 07 September 1951, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 28 July 1966, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 28 May 1981, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Died: 01 October 1989, Espinal, Gardiner Place, Dublin City

by 1969 at Rome, Italy (ROM) studying
by 1972 at Southampton, England (ANG) working
by 1975 at St Bede’s, Manchester (ANG) teaching

Moore, James, 1799-1868, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1756
  • Person
  • 25 July 1799-02 January 1868

Born: 25 July 1799, Kilrush, County Wexford
Entered: 28 November 1839, Frederick, MD, USA - Marylandiae Province (MAR)
Ordained: - pre Entry
Final vows: 15 August 1852
Died: 02 January 1868, Holy Cross College, Worcester, MA, USA - Marylandiae Province (MAR)

Moore, Thomas, 1790-1863, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1761
  • Person
  • 21 December 1790-29 March 1863

Born: 21 December 1790, Duncormick, County Wexford
Entered: 31 October 1825 St Thomas, Newtown, Maryland - Marylandiae Province (MAR)
Final vows: 02 February 1841
Died: 29 March 1863, Georgetown College, Washington DC, USA - Marylandiae Province (MAR)

Mordaunt, Edward, 1865-1957, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/255
  • Person
  • 30 May 1865-13 February 1957

Born: 30 May 1865, Gorey, County Wexford
Entered: 27 April 1885, Loyola House, Dromore, County Down
Final Vows: 02 February 1897, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner St, Dublin
Died: 13 February 1957, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 32nd Year No 2 1957
Obituary :
Br Edward Mordaunt (1865-1957)

At Tullabeg, early in the morning of 13th February, 1957, Br. Edward Mordaunt died peacefully in his sleep. He was 91 years of age and had been a Jesuit for more than 71 years. At his death he was the oldest member of the Province and the last survivor of those who had made their noviceship in Dromore, Co. Down.
Br. Mordaunt was born at Gorey, Co, Wexford, on 30th May, 1865. Educated by the Christian Brothers in that town, he came to Dublin at the age of seventeen and was apprenticed to a firm of tailors. There he became an expert tailor and cutter, a skill which he used to good purpose during his long life subsequently in the Society. At nineteen, feeling the call to religious life, he returned to the parish where he had lived as a boy (the one parish in Co. Wexford belonging to Dublin diocese), to Consult his parish priest. He was advised to enter the Society of Jesus and this he did on 27th April, 1885. One of his reminiscences of these Dromore days was seeing Fr. Gerard Manley Hopkins, a visitor from University College, Dublin, standing long and pensively in a field, watching the ploughman turning up the furrows. (Cf. “Sheer plod makes plough down sillion shine.") After the noviceship was transferred to Tullabeg, Br. Mordaunt came there as tailor (1888). In this craft he was quite outstanding. His Jesuit gowns were famous in the Province for the excellence of their cut and trim, and this high standard he taught to his pupil, John Ryan, who for over half a century was tailor at Tullabeg. Later Br. Mordaunt was tailor at Milltown Park for a period of twelve years (1890-1902). It is interesting to note, in the annual Catalogues for those years, how the list of Br. Mordaunt's duties and responsibilities lengthens as his manifold talents gradually come to light. Thus in 1892 he is : Sartor, Cust, vest,, Ad dom., but in 1901 he is, in addition, Aedituus, Emptor, Excitator. During this period, as subsequently in Tullabeg (1902-1911), he proved himself an excellent caterer and was frequently invited to other houses to organise festive occasions. Thus for several years, he was in charge of arrangements for the annual Union Dinner in Clongowes. He himself liked to recall how on the occasion of Fr. James Murphy's funeral at Tullabeg in 1908, he catered for a hundred distinguished visitors.
The competence which Br. Mordaunt displayed in domestic administration decided his superiors to apply him exclusively to that task. In 1911 he took up residence in Wilton House, off Leeson Park, where a hostel for university students had been established, following the foundation of the National University. This hostel was the forerunner of University Hall, Hatch Street, which was completed in 1913, and whither Br. Mordaunt transferred in that year. For thirty-three years he rendered distinguished service in University Hall as universal provider and manager of the domestic staff. He was a strict disciplinarian and secured obedience and efficiency from the servants in his charge. Some of his religious brethren might consider his managerial methods some what stern and autocratic, but somehow the youths over whom he ruled not only respected but were devoted to him. They discerned, beneath a rugged exterior, Br. Mordaunt's fundamental justice and benevolence. The students in the Hall also respected him, though they were not above playing an occasional practical joke upon him. In his shopping expeditions all over the city; Br. Mordaunt was a figure well-known to generations of tradesmen and shop assistants, who, one and all, bad a wholesome respect for his shrewdness and determination to get precisely the commodity he was seeking. During all those years he lived the life of an edifying religious, regular and attentive to his spiritual duties, despite his manifold distractions, and insisting on attention to their religious duties from the servants in his charge. God blessed him with health and vigour all his life. He was fond of walking and, when work was not pressing, he would ask his superior for a shilling and go for a long solitary march to the Dublin hills. A regular feature of his annual holiday in the Jesuit College, Galway, was his trip to the Aran Islands, as honoured guest of Captain Senan Meskil of the good ship Dún Angus.
In 1946, being now an octogenarian, Br. Mordaunt relinquished his tasks in University Hall but continued to work for two years more in 35 Lower Leeson Street. Then, at his own earnest request, in 1948 he was sent to Tullabeg that he might end his long and serviceable life in quiet and prayer. Until his memory began to fail a year or two before the end, he was an active and affable member of the Tullabeg community, always ready to enter with zest into the friendly banter of recreation and brimful of anecdotes from his long and varied career in the Irish Province. When his memory and later his bodily strength began to decline, he was cared for by the other Brothers with a charity and devotion which were truly admirable.
Father Rector said Br. Mordaunt's Requiem Mass in the People's Church, Tullabeg, on 15th February, with Right Rev. Monsignor McCormack, P.P., V.G., Clara, presiding. Also present were Father Provincial, the Rectors of Emo and of Lower Leeson Street and Father Minister of Clongowes. The Tullabeg choir sang the Absolution and “Benedictus”, and Br. Mordaunt was laid to rest in the college cemetery.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Brother Edward Mordaunt SJ 1865-1957
Br Edward Mordaunt laboured for 33 years as universal provider and manager at University Hall Dublin. He had a special gift in that respect, though he was by trade a first-class tailor. He was often called upon by other institutions to manage their big celebrations, University College, for example. On the occasion of Fr James Murphy’s funeral in Tullabeg, he catered for over a hundred distinguished guests.

But this excellence in the gifts of Marta did not exclude the gifts of Mary. He had the hands of Martha and the heart of Mary. A deep religious spirit underlay his efficiency, so that when his usefulness was at an end in 1948, when he was already 82, he requested to be sent to Tullabeg and to end his days in prayer and quiet. There on February 13th 1957 he passed peacefully to his reward at the age of 91, with the record of having been 71 years a Jesuit.

Morris, James A, 1898-1965, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1773
  • Person
  • 16 January 1898-10 June 1965

Born: 16 January 1898, Wexford Town
Entered: 05 September 1923, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 31 July 1935, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 29 June 1938, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 10 June 1965, St John’s Hospital, Limerick

Part of the Crescent College, Limerick community at the time of death

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

by 1927 in Vals France (LUGD) studying
by 1937 at St Beuno’s Wales (ANG) making Tertianship

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 41st Year No 1 1966
Obituary :
Fr James Albert Morris SJ (1898-1965)
Early in the morning of 10th June 1965 Fr. Morris died rather unexpectedly at St. John's Hospital, Limerick. R.I.P. He had been removed to hospital only the day before. For some weeks he had been suffering from a series of colds and headaches but they were not considered serious until a few days before his death. In fact he taught his Religious Knowledge class up to the previous weekend. However, he never seemed quite the same since he got a fall from his bicycle in August 1964, when he was doing a supply at Wexford. The doctors could not find anything seriously wrong with him, but, very unlike his usual way, he often complained of his health later.
James Albert Morris was born in Wexford on 16th June, 1898. He received some of his primary education from the Loreto Nuns, Mullingar. To the end he remained a great friend of the Loreto Nuns, especially, of course, those in their local Wexford Convent. Indeed, he was disappointed when he came to Limerick in 1962 to find that there was not a Loreto Convent in the locality. For him they ran the best girls' schools. And so very many of them knew him! If one went to give a retreat at a Loreto Convent some nun would always be sure to ask : “How is Fr. Albert?” The Wexford people and priests, nuns, his old pupils, and all in the Society knew him by no other name but Albert. In the Society one often heard of “the two Alberts” - Albert Morris and Albert Cooney, co-novices, together in many houses, and close friends and faithful correspondents during all their years in religion.
From 1913 to 1916 he was a boy in Clongowes. On leaving, thinking of going to U.C.D., he spent a short time at Terenure College, and later with Dom Sweetman, O.S.B., at Gorey. It would seem that he was trying to decide about his vocation during these years. He entered our noviceship at Tullabeg on 5th September, 1923. For his first year Fr. Michael Browne was his Master of Novices. Albert, and he remained so to the end, was nervous when he had to appear in public before Ours, even later to the extent of finding it distressing to say Litanies or give Benediction. There is a story told, characteristic of master and of novice, when Albert had to preach in the refectory. He probably had prepared a sermon that was too short for supper, and when he found himself nearing the end of it, he made many pauses during which he turned round several times to the novices serving at table as if to say : “Why don't you finish up?” Fr. Michael Browne noticed it, realised what was happening, had one of his customary choking fits of laughter and the poor novice had to fill in the time till the end of the meal.
Having finished his noviceship under Fr. Martin Maher and taken his vows he spent a year as a junior at Rathfarnham before going to Vals, France, the House of Philosophy, for the combined Provinces of Toulouse and Champagne. For the rest of his life even in the shortest conversation he used to throw in a French phrase. On his return to Ireland he taught at Belvedere from 1928 to 1932. Then to Milltown Park, where he was ordained on 31st July 1935. Tertianship followed at St. Beuno's, Wales.
His first assignment as a priest was as Sub-Moderator, 1937-39, at the Apostolic School, Mungret. Here he took his last vows on 29th June 1938. We find him back in Belvedere on the teaching staff from 1939 to 1943. Then began the work in which he was engaged almost for the rest of his life,
In 1943 he went to Tullabeg as Assistant Director of the Ricci Mission Unit, later to be known as Irish Jesuit Missions, for our work in what is now Zambia had begun years after the Hong Kong Mission. The stamp bureau was the chief work here and aided by generations of philosophers and his co-assistant director, the late Fr. William Allen, of the Australian Province, he gave most enthusiastic and painstaking service. Nuns and teachers everywhere in Ireland, receptionists in hotels, clerical workers in shops and factories were his clients and he carried on an enormous correspondence. He opened all the parcels of stamps for it was not infrequent that in the middle would be found a box of sweets or some other present for Fr. Albert. He was always a pleasant community man and he was pleased whenever he could come in to recreation to share his stamp bureau presents with his fellow Jesuits.
He remained in Tullabeg until at his own request, he was moved to Emo in 1959, still working for Irish Jesuit Missions. Among the changes that the Visitor, Fr. J. MacMahon, made in 1962 at the Status was the assigning of Fr. Albert to the Crescent, Limerick. Here he combined his interest in foreign mission work and later taught Religious Knowledge in the junior school.
On 12th June His Lordship the Bishop, Dr. H. Murphy, presided at the Office and Requiem Mass in the Sacred Heart Church, Even though it was a Saturday, there was a large attendance of priests present, including the Administrator of Wexford, Very Rev. Fr. T. Murphy, and a companion. Fr. Albert had spent his summers for many years supplying in Wexford and often at Sunshine House, Balbriggan. He was laid to rest in the community cemetery at Mungret. May God reward him and may our missionaries abroad never forget him in their prayers.

Murphy, Richard, 1812-1872, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/1806
  • Person
  • 15 August 1812-12 July 1872

Born: 15 August 1812, Effernoge, County Wexford
Entered: 10 January 1853, Florissant MO, USA - Missouriana Province (MIS)
Finla vows: 15 August 1864
Died: 12 July 1872, St Louis University, St Louis MO, USA - Missouriana Province (MIS)

Nugent, Gerard, 1615/19-1692, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1842
  • Person
  • 1615/19-08 April 1692

Born: 1615/19, Brackley, County Westmeath
Entered: 1639, Watten, Belgium - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 1645, Liege, Belgium
Final vows: 26 May 1657
Died: 08 April 1692, Maynooth, County Kildare

Studied at Charleville-Mézières and Lillie
WAS DISMISSED - DID HE RE-ENTER (might explain discrepancy in Ent dates?)
1642-1645 At Liège studying Theology
1646 (1650 Catalogue) Came to Mission - Teacher, Confessor, Preacher
1649 in Wexford
1666 Has lately returned to Ireland from France and has no fixed station. Was Operarius and will be a strenuous one. Missioner for 17 years

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Had studied Humanities and Philosophy for two years before Ent
1646 Sent to Ireland. he knew Irish, English and Latin, and had both taught Humanities and been a Confessor for four years. (HIB CAT 1650 - at ARSI)
1666 He had lately returned from France and had no fixed station, but he promised to me a zealous Missioner. He has been in Ireland for one year, and was a Missioner elsewhere for seventeen years.
Ent 1637; Sent to English College Liège 1642, and in Third Year Theology in 1645 (HIB Catalogue);
1649 He was in Wexford - “A truly prudent and religious man” (Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)
RIP 08/09/1692 (Catalogue of Deceased SJ in Louvain University Library)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Had already studied Philosophy before Ent 1639 Watten
1641-1645 After First Vows he resumed his studies at Liège where he was Ordained 1645
1645 Sent to Ireland and Wexford Residence, where he taught Grammar and ministered until the fall of Wexford to Cromwell. During the “commonwealth” he ministered in Westmeath, and from the restoration was nominally attached to the Dublin Residence.
1663 With the General’s permission he went to Paris and stayed for two years
1665 Returned to Ireland he continues to work, and according to a State paper, he was PP of Maynooth in 1672
During the Titus Oates's Plot, Nicholas Netterville under examination stated that Gerard Nugent was “of Brackley in the County of Westmeath and now coming to reside in Dublin”. There is no evidence that this happened. According to Jesuit correspondence Gerard was of an illustrious family. He died at Maynooth 08/04/1692

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
NUGENT, GERARD, After studying Philosophy “extra Societatem”, joined the Order in 1639, and commenced a course of Theology at Liege in 1642. Seven years later I meet him at Wexford, and bearing the character of “Vir vere prudens et religiosus”.

Nugent, Nicholas, 1629-1671, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1845
  • Person
  • 22 February 1629-28 September 1671

Born: 22 February 1629, County Kildare
Entered: 30 September 1648, Kilkenny
Ordained: c 1656, Bourges, France
Died: 28 September 1671, Dublin - Franciae Province (FRA)

1651 At La Flèche College FRA
1655 At Bruges College FRA
1658 Not in main body of FRA Catalogue, but at the end as teaching in France
1661 At Vannes College teaching Grammar
1665 Not in FRA Catalogue
1666 is 25 miles from Dublin teaching, catechising and administering the Sacrament. 1st year on Mission

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Studied Humanities and two years Philosophy before Ent, and then a further half year of Humanities afterwards. he knew Irish, English and Latin.
Ent 30/09/1648 (HIB Catalogue 1650 - ARSI)
1665 Sent to Ireland and New Ross
1666 He was a Missioner twenty-five miles from Dublin, teaching catechism to the country people and administering the Sacraments (HIB CAT 1666 - ARSI).
??In 1640 removed with the community to Galway and then to Europe.
1670 Living in Ireland
(Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
He had already studied Philosophy for two years before Ent 30 September 1648 Kilkenny
1650-1656 After First Vows he was sent for Philosophy studies to La Flèche and Theology at Bourges where he was Ordained c 1656
1656-1662 Sent to teach at Vannes
1662-1663 Made Tertianship at Rouen
1663-1664 Sent to teach at Tours
1664/65-1667 Sent to Ireland and in the Dublin region for two years and then to New Ross
1671 At New Ross he got into trouble, July 1671, for having challenged the local Protestant Priest to a public dispute in which he would show that the Pope was to be obeyed in spiritual matters but the King in temporal matters only, and also that the Protestant Bible could not be called “Word of God” as it was full of errors. The Protestant cited Nugent before the Assizes when he was sentenced to a year's imprisonment, and his goods were confiscated. The incident was the Holy See and the General and latter wrote at once to the Superior of the mission advising him that none of his subjects should engage in public controversy except with the advice of Hierarchy and the Superior himself.
On his release from prison Nicholas was recalled to the Dublin district and was working at Beggstown at the time of the Titus Oates's Plot. He died shortly after that, but the date was not recorded.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
NUGENT, NICHOLAS. I meet with two Members of this name.
The other member was finishing his Noviceship at Kilkenny in 1649. The next year he was removed with his Brethren to Galway, and thence to the Continent, where all traces of him disappear.

O'Brien, John, 1769-1854, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1854
  • Person
  • 29 February 1796-19 December 1854

Born: 29 February 1796, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 30 July 1827, Montrouge, Paris, France - Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained: 22 September 1832, Stonyhurst, England
Final Vows: 02 February 1847, Stonyhurst, England
Died: 19 December 1854, Stonyhurst, Lancashire, England - Angliae Province (ANG)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Studied Humanities at Stonyhurst before Entry.

1832 He was Ordained at Stonyhurst 22 September 1832 by Bishop Penswick., and was sent to the Lincoln Mission 16 October 1832.
1840 Sent to the Spinkhill Mission
1842 Sent on the Portico Mission
1843 Sent to Stonyhurst as an assistant-missioner, and died there from paralysis, from which he had suffered for several years on 19 December 1854 aged 58.

O'Connell, Maurice, 1622-1687, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1875
  • Person
  • 1622-31 March 1687

Born: 1622, Castlegregory, County Kerry
Entered: 20 January 1641, St Andrea, Rome, Italy (ROM)
Ordained: 1647, Rome, Italy
Died: 31 March 1687, County Cork

Alias Henriquez

1649 was at Ross in Ireland
1652 Catalogue M Conauld of Kerry and Rome 1641 or 1642 on Mission 1649 is a formed Spir Coad.
1666 Catalogue M Connelle is near Cork catechising and assisting in missionary work. He was once arrested but soon set free.

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Studied Moral Theology for two years. Knew Irish, Italian and Latin.
Taught lower school for three years.
1649 Sent to Ireland and was teaching at New Ross. (HIB Catalogue 1650) Was a great Preacher and “thaumaturgus” (Miracle worker).
1666 Living near Cork working as Missioner, Catechising etc. He was also imprisoned for his faith. (cf Foley’s Collectanea) He had then been on the Mission 17 years.
Eulogised in the Annual Letters 1671-1674, and styled the “Thaumaturgus” of the island. Kerry seems to have been the chief base for his apostolic works. He was cruelly outraged and persecuted, and died at Cork 31 March 1687, aged 72.
No doubt that he was of the “Liberator” family - Daniel O'Connell. He is called “nobilis” in the contemporary account sent to Rome

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Cornelius of Cahir (a townland of Corcoguiney, Killiny parish near Castlegregory) and Maria née Watre (sic).
Three of Maurice's uncles were priests; Richard, afterwards Bishop of Ardfert, Maurice, an Augustinian and Donough a diocesan priest of Ardfert
Had studied Humanities at Bordeaux 1638-1640 before Ent 20 January 1641 Rome
1643-1647 After First Vows he was sent to study at the Roman College and was Ordained there c 1647.
1647-1648 Sent as Minister at Sezze College
1648 Sent to Ireland via Bordeaux and New Ross. He was appointed to teach but as he does not seem to have known any English, it can only be supposed that the schoolboys at New Ross used Irish or spoken Latin as the languages of the classroom. He himself was known to speak Irish, Italian and French. In Mercure Verdier’s Report to the General (1649), he speaks of his zeal and industry.
During the “Commonwealth” period he moved to Kerry, and then after the restoration moved to Cork working there until he died 31 March 1687
While working in Cork he won the veneration of the poor and persecuted amongst whom he was commonly regarded as a “Thaumaturgus” /Miracle Worker”
During the Oates Plot his name appeared on a list of Priests sent to the Government.
A kinsman, Daniel - in religion, Robert, O. M. Cap.- and collaborator in writing the Commentarius Rinuccinianus mentions Maurice in that work.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Maurice Connell SJ 1615-1687
Fr Maurice Connell was born in the Kingdom of Kerry in 1615. He entered the Society in Rome in 1641.

On his return to Ireland he was stationed fors at New Ross, and then at Cork, where he laboured as a missioner and catechist. In the Annual Letters of 1671-1674, he is spoken of as “the Thaumaturgus of Ireland” Fr Oliver says of him “he was truly an eye to the blind, a foot to the lame and a true father to the poor”.

Like his Blessed Master he went about doing good, and like Him, was cruelly outraged and persecuted. He was for some time imprisoned for the faith.

He died on March 31st 1678 at the age of 72.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
CONNELL, MAURICE, “genere nobili oriundus”. The Annual Letters from 1671 to 1674, shew how powerful this Father was in word and in work, insomuch that he might be called “hujus Insulae Thaumaturgus”. Kerry seems to have been the theatre of his Apostolic labors. He was truly an eye to the blind and a foot to the lame, and the Father of the poor. Like his blessed Master, he went about doing good; and like him he was cruelly outraged and persecuted. He was living in July, 1675, “sexagenario major”.

O'Connor, James Henry, 1679-1724, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1880
  • Person
  • 24 July 1679-04 January 1724

Born: 24 July 1679, County Wexford
Entered: 10 January 1703, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: - pre Entry
Final Vows: 25 March 1713
Died: 04 January 1724, Irish College, Santiago de Compostella, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)

Alias Henriquez

A Priest on Entry
1706 at Soria CAST teaching Grammar

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Two Entries for James Harrison (there is another called James Harrison who uses the alias Henriquez, but perhaps this is more correctly an Entry for James O’Connor)
Studied at Santiago and Salamanca. Was prudent, zealous, energetic (Dr McDonald)
1712-1724 Rector of Santiago (cf Foley’s Collectanea) Professor of Rhetoric, and converted many Protestants. Held in great esteem at Compostella (cf euolgium in IER March 1874 written by a Spanish Jesuit). A Spanish Father had been appointed in 1710, but did not get on well with the students, who petitioned for a Rector from their own nation.
See a beautiful account of him in a letter of Père Joseph Payral, 09 January 1724, announcing his death (Irish Ecclesiastical Record ER March 1874, p 251)
Letters of his are at Salamanca

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of James and Mary née Harrison (in Spain he was known as Henriquez, a Spanish form of his mother’s surname)
Had studied at Salamanca where he was Ordained before Ent 10 January 1703 Villagarcía
1705-1712 After First Vows he was sent to Soria to teach Humanities
1712 Rector Irish College Santiago and died in office 04 January 1724
His obituary notice paid tribute to his ability in government and the inspiring example of his religious life.

O'Connor, John Baptist, 1652-1706, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1895
  • Person
  • 28 June 1652-06 January 1706

Born: 28 June 1652, New Ross, County Wexford
Entered: 08 December 1674, Nancy, France - Campaniae Province (CAMP)
Ordained: 1687, Arlesham (near Basel), France
Final Vows: 15 August 1694
Died: 06 January 1706, New Ross, County Wexford - Romanae Province (ROM)

1676-1678 At Épinal CAMP teaching Grammar at the Residence
1678-1680 At Pont-á-Mousson Studying Philosophy
1680-1681 Teaching Grammar at Langres CAMP
1681-1682 Teaching Grammar at Charleville CAMP
1682-1683 Teaching Humanities at Nancy
1683-1684 Teaching Grammar at Pont-á-Mousson
1684-1986 Theology at Rheims
1686-1688 Theology at Pont-á-Mousson
1690-1691 Not in CAMP Catalogue - gone to Scotia

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1693 Tertianship in Dublin
Was on Irish Mission 1669, 1674 and 1694; Skilled in Irish language (Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
1676-1680 After First Vows he was sent for a year of Regency to Épinal and then to Pont-à-Mousson for Philosophy.
1680-1684 There followed four more years of Regency at Langres, Charleville, Nancy and Pont-à-Mousson.
1684-1688 Sent to Rheims for Theology and was ordained at Arlesham (? Arles ?), near Basel 1687, and then back to Pont-à-Mousson to complete his studies
1688 Sent to Ireland and New Ross and was registered as PP there 11 July 1688 - having succeeded Bishop Wadding there. He died at New Ross 06 January 1706

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
O’CONNOR , JOHN. I meet with him in Champagne,in 1686, when his services were demanded for the Irish Mission. There I find him in November, 1694, labouring diligently and fruitfully in a country Parish. His skill in the Irish language rendered his services particularly valuable to a poor population.

O'Connor, John, 1788-1841, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1882
  • Person
  • 08 September 1788-27 March 1841

Born: 08 September 1788, County Wexford
Entered: 07 September 1808, Hodder, Stonyhurst, England - Angliae Province (ANG)
Final vows: 08 July 1832
Died: 27 March 1841, Clongowes Wood College SJ, Clane, County Kildare

in Clongowes 1817
Not in 1826 Catalogue

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
He had taught Humanities and been a Minister and Procurator at Clongowes for several years before he died from the effects of an accident the week before on 27 March 1841 aged 53.

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He had studied at Carlow College before Entry.
1814 He arrived at Clongowes for the opening of the College. Here he taught for many years with considerable success. he was also Minister for many years, and in the continued absence of the Rector on Irish Mission business, he acted in his place. Though apparently a strong man, he suffered from his health, particularly his head, and seemed to fear a stroke or apoplexy. On this account, it was said that he rarely offered the Holy Sacrifice. A severe accident occasioned his death. he was returning with the farm steward from a local fair on St Patrick’s Day, when the car overturned, falling on him and crushing him severely. He lingered for about ten days. He died 27 March 1841 at Clongowes.

◆ Fr Joseph McDonnell SJ Past and Present Notes :
16th February 1811 At the advance ages of 73, Father Betagh, PP of the St Michael Rosemary Lane Parish Dublin, Vicar General of the Dublin Archdiocese died. His death was looked upon as almost a national calamity. Shops and businesses were closed on the day of his funeral. His name and qualities were on the lips of everyone. He was an ex-Jesuit, the link between the Old and New Society in Ireland.

Among his many works was the foundation of two schools for boys : one a Classical school in Sall’s Court, the other a Night School in Skinner’s Row. One pupil received particular care - Peter Kenney - as he believed there might be great things to come from him in the future. “I have not long to be with you, but never fear, I’m rearing up a cock that will crow louder and sweeter for yopu than I ever did” he told his parishioners. Peter Kenney was to be “founder” of the restored Society in Ireland.

There were seventeen Jesuits in Ireland at the Suppression : John Ward, Clement Kelly, Edward Keating, John St Leger, Nicholas Barron, John Austin, Peter Berrill, James Moroney, Michael Cawood, Michael Fitzgerald, John Fullam, Paul Power, John Barron, Joseph O’Halloran, James Mulcaile, Richard O’Callaghan and Thomas Betagh. These men believed in the future restoration, and they husbanded their resources and succeeded in handing down to their successors a considerable sum of money, which had been saved by them.

A letter from the Acting General Father Thaddeus Brezozowski, dated St Petersburg 14/06/1806 was addressed to the only two survivors, Betagh and O’Callaghan. He thanked them for their work and their union with those in Russia, and suggested that the restoration was close at hand.

A letter from Nicholas Sewell, dated Stonyhurst 07/07/1809 to Betagh gives details of Irishmen being sent to Sicily for studies : Bartholomew Esmonde, Paul Ferley, Charles Aylmer, Robert St Leger, Edmund Cogan and James Butler. Peter Kenney and Matthew Gahan had preceded them. These were the foundation stones of the Restored Society.

Returning to Ireland, Kenney, Gahan and John Ryan took residence at No3 George’s Hill. Two years later, with the monies saved for them, Kenney bought Clongowes as a College for boys and a House of Studies for Jesuits. From a diary fragment of Aylmer, we learn that Kenney was Superior of the Irish Mission and Prefect of Studies, Aylmer was Minister, Claude Jautard, a survivor of the old Society in France was Spiritual Father, Butler was Professor of Moral and Dogmatic Theology, Ferley was professor of Logic and Metaphysics, Esmonde was Superior of Scholastics and they were joined by St Leger and William Dinan. Gahan was described as a Missioner at Francis St Dublin and Confessor to the Poor Clares and irish Sisters of Charity at Harold’s Cross and Summerhill. Ryan was a Missioner in St Paul’s, Arran Quay, Dublin. Among the Scholastics, Brothers and Masters were : Brothers Fraser, Levins, Connor, Bracken, Sherlock, Moran, Mullen and McGlade.

Trouble was not long coming. Protestants were upset that the Jesuits were in Ireland and sent a petition was sent to Parliament, suggesting that the Vow of Obedience to the Pope meant they could not have an Oath of Allegiance to the King. In addition, the expulsion of Jesuits from all of Europe had been a good thing. Kenney’s influence and diplomatic skills resulted in gaining support from Protestants in the locality of Clongowes, and a counter petition was presented by the Duke of Leinster on behalf of the Jesuits. This moment passed, but anto Jesuit feelings were mounting, such as in the Orange faction, and they managed to get an enquiry into the Jesuits and Peter Kenney and they appeared before the Irish Chief Secretary and Provy Council. Peter Kenney’s persuasive and oratorical skills won the day and the enquiry group said they were satisfied and impressed.

Over the years the Mission grew into a Province with Joseph Lentaigne as first Provincial in 1860. In 1885 the first outward undertaking was the setting up of an Irish Mission to Australia by Lentaigne and William Kelly, and this Mission grew exponentially from very humble beginnings.

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

O'Dempsey, Robert, 1858-1930, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1890
  • Person
  • 15 August 1858-01 March 1930

Born: 15 August 1858, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 12 November 1883, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: - pre Entry
Final Vows: 15 August 1898, St Mary’s, Miller Street, Sydney, Australia
Died: 01 March 1930, St Aloysius College, Milson’s Point, Sydney, Australia

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

Came to Australia 1892

◆ David Strong SJ “The Australian Dictionary of Jesuit Biography 1848-2015”, 2nd Edition, Halstead Press, Ultimo NSW, Australia, 2017 - ISBN : 9781925043280
Robert O'Dempsey was educated at Clongowes, 1871-77, and did ecclesiastical studies in Rome. He entered the Society as a priest at Milltown Park, 12 November 1883. He taught at Belvedere 1886-89, Clongowes, 1889-90, and Mungret, 1890-91, before a year of theology at Milltown.
O'Dempsey was sent to Australia in 1892, and taught for a few years at St Aloysius' College Bourke Street, at Xavier College, 1895-97, Riverview, 1897-98, and St Patrick's College, 1900-01.
He became engaged in parish ministry at Richmond, 1901-03, Hawthorn, 1903-12, Lavender Bay, 1912-22, as first parish priest, and Norwood, 1922-23, He was superior for that year. Later he went to St Aloysius' College, as spiritual father and director of sodalities.
O'Dempsey was a friend of the Sydney archbishop and Monsignor O'Haran. He had a remarkable knowledge of Latin and Greek, and was a notable cricketer. As a pastor he was most devoted, regularly visiting the sick and members of die parish, showing much gentleness and sympathy. He was recognised as a lovable priest.

◆ 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.

Irish Province News 5th Year No 3 1930
Obituary :
Fr Robert O’Dempsey
On the 15th August 1858 Fr.O’Dempsey was born in Enniscorthy. He was educated at Clongowes, and entered the Society at Milltown as a priest, on the 12th Nov. 1883. The second year's novitiate was made at Dromore. From 1885 to 1891 he was prefect or master at either Clongowes, Belvedere or Mungret, then repeated theology at Milltown, and in 1892 went to Australia. For the next nine years his time was divided between the Colleges of St. Aloysius Kew, Riverview and St. Patrick's. 1901 brought a change, he became Operarius, spending two years at St. Ignatius, ten at Hawthorn, ten at Lavender Bay, one at Norwood, where he was Superior and Consultor of the Mission. 1923 saw him Spiritual Father at St. Aloysius' where he remained until his happy death on Saturday, March 1st 1930.
The following sketch of his work and character, by one who knew him well, will show what manner of man Fr O’Dempsey was :
“During the last years of his life Fr O'Dempsey was in charge of the Star of the Sea Church, Milson's Point, Sydney. He did not spare himself, even when old age and ill-health had wasted his body. 6.30 found him, every morning in his confessional. He said Mass at seven and returned to hear confessions until breakfast. He spent at least four hours every day visiting his district. Daily he taught catechism in the state school. Wednesday evening he gave to the St. Vincent de Paul. On all Thursdays he had evening devotions. On Saturdays confessions from 4-6 and 7-9. Sunday was a particularly heavy day. Mass and short sermon at seven, Sermon at ten, Sunday school at three, and devotions at 7.30. A hard week for an old man, and yet what struck one was his unchanging light-hearted and good humour. He had a fluent knowledge of Italian and heard a large number of confessions in that language .
He was an eloquent and forceful preacher, and, even to the end, spared no pains in preparing his sermons.
He was a wonderful man in a community. Never was he out of sorts in recreation, and his humour and great fund of stories made the hour after dinner a real relaxation. His deeply spiritual life and sound judgment fitted him perfectly for the position of Spiritual Father, which he held during his residence at St. Aloysius' College, to which the Star of the Sea is attached. He will be greatly missed.

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

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

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

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

Early education at Clongowes Wood College SJ

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

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

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 47th Year No 2 1972

Obituary :

Fr Robert O’Dempsey SJ (1893-1972)

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

Plunket, John, 1588-1643, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/1988
  • Person
  • 01 October 1588-24 November 1643

Born: 01 October 1588, Dublin
Entered: 15 August 1611, Tournai, Belgium - Belgicae Province (BELG)
Ordained: 14 April 1618, Douai, France
Died: 24 November 1643, Wexford Residence, Wexford

Mother was Margaret Bagnall, clearly brother of Henry
Studied Humanities in Schools of the Society at Antwerp and Tournai, and Philosophy at Douai
1615 At Cambrai studying Philosophy
1617 In Belgium
1619 At Douai teaching Greek
1621 Catalogue A native of Meath Age 33 Soc 10 Mission 1. Health middling. As he only came lately he is hardly known to us.
1622 In Dublin District
1637 ROM Catalogue Talent, judgement and prudence good. Cholericens. Middling proficiency in letters. Fit to teach Humanities.

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Professor of Greek at Douai;
1617 In Belgium (Irish Ecclesiastical Record)
1620 Came to Ireland and was in Dublin Diocese 1621 and 1622

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Christopher and Margaret née Bagnall and brother of Henry
Early education with the Jesuits at Antwerp and Douai before Ent 15 August 1611 Tournai
1613-1615 After First Vows he was sent to teach Greek at Tournai for two years
1615-1619 He was then sent to Douai for Theology and Ordained there 14 April 1618
1620/21 Sent to Ireland and the Dublin Residence, but worked mostly outside the city.
1627-1641 A brief mission at Waterford, but was back in Dublin when he appears to have been recalled to Dublin as a result of a letter from the General who wished to have the Mission Superior Robert Nugent reprimand him for some indiscretion. He remained in Dublin until c 1641
1641 He was sent to the Wexford Residence where he died at Wexford 24 November 1643

Power, Edmund, 1878-1953, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/363
  • Person
  • 02 March 1878-03 August 1953

Born: 02 March 1878, Kilcullane, Herbertstown, County Limerick
Entered: 01 October 1896, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 28 July 1912, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 25 February 1915, Chiesa del Gesù, Rome Italy
Died: 03 August 1953, Milltown Park, Dublin

by 1901 in Saint Joseph’s, Beirut, Syria (LUGD) studying oriental language
by 1908 at Valkenburg, Netherlands (GER) studying
by 1910 at Oran, Algeria (LUGD) studying
by 1910 at Hastings, Sussex, England (LUGD) studying
by 1915 at Pontifical Biblical Institute Rome, Italy (ROM) teaching

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Note from J Austin Hartigan Entry :
After Noviceship he made studies at Tullabeg, and then Eastern languages at Beirut with Edmund Power.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Studied at St Patrick’s Seminary Thurles and St Patrick’s College Maynooth to 1st Divinity before entry

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 28th Year No 4 1953

Obituary :

Father Edmond Power 1878-1953

When Father Power went to his reward, on August 3rd, the Irish Province lost one of its most venerable and distinguished sons. Studying, teaching and writing with unflagging energy till the end, he had done much, in a long lifetime, for that scholarly defence of the Faith which, as the Holy Father said at our fourth centenary, is what the Church chiefly asks of the Society. The funeral of “this eminent Jesuit scholar”, to quote the papers, was marked by sympathetic tributes from the highest dignitaries of Church and State in Ireland. All felt that there had gone from us a learned and holy man who could hardly, if ever, be replaced. Fr. Power had, in fact, in a laborious life devoted to some of the most difficult branches of scholarship, brought his great gifts to a readiness and ripeness which made him indeed a master in Israel." Happily, in the most important contribution which be made to the recent “Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture” be was able to leave to the Church a fitting memorial of his great achievements.
Father Power was born at Kilcullane, Herbertstown, Co. Limerick, in 1878. From his sturdy farming ancestors he derived a wiry vigour which stood him in good stead during the rigours of a student's life passed for the most part under the trying conditions of Eastern and Roman climates. His deep piety too owed much to his remarkable family - seven of his sisters became nuns, two of his brothers priests, one of whom was till his retirement Parish Priest in California, the other Archdeacon of the Cashel diocese. One sister and one brother “stayed in the world”, and Fr. Power had the happiness of seeing a nephew ordained last year. He treasured the memory of his father, who instilled into his children a great devotion to the daily rosary, and who was a weekly communicant at a time when few felt prepared. His saintly mother may well be remembered by her words in time of trial : “What is this life worth, except to serve God”. Fr. Edmond was not the slowest to learn and live that lesson.
He was a talented child, who learnt the alphabet in one lesson at the age of three - a foreshadowing of what he would do later when faced with the four hundred cuneiform characters of the Assyrian ‘alphabet’. When he left the National School to attend the Christian Brothers, Limerick, he was intended for law. But his vocation to the priesthood brought him to Thurles Seminary where in one year he won a place at Maynooth. There he studied Philosophy for two years, 1894-6, and three weeks Theology, before entering the noviceship. Well-meaning and revered counsellors had urged him to wait till after ordination. But he was determined “to get the real Jesuit spirit” by doing the full course, thereby showing the high esteem he had of the Society, and which he expressed on his death-bed. “A year or two”, he said, “what does it matter? You all know what I think of the Society”. He was remembered at Maynooth as the student who was always in the chapel.
He stayed in Tullabeg for his juniorate, 1898-1902, gaining one of the most brilliant degrees on record at the Royal University in Ancient Classics. During three of these years, he taught his fellow juniors. In 1906 he went to the University of the French Jesuits at Beirut. His chief study was Arabic, ancient and modern, which he admitted he found much more difficult than the Hebrew which he also studied, along with Syriac, Aramaic, Assyrian, Coptic and the ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. His doctorate thesis was on a medieval poet of Arabia. During these years he gained that living familiarity with the East which graced his widely-read articles on Palestinian Customs as illustrating the Bible. A year's teaching at Clongowes was followed by two years philosophy at Valkenburg, and theology with the exiled French Jesuits at Hastings. His way of passing the summer, even most of the one after ordination, was to study in the British Museum, His preparation for his work could hardly have been more apt or thorough.
In Tertianship at Tullabeg, he was highly appreciated as the author of skits and humorous poems performed at the concerts given to the Novices on festive occasions. His wit was indeed always quick, though his charity restricted its play. He was called to Rome in 1914 to begin the twenty-four years of Professorship at the Biblical Institute which made him a well-loved figure to hundreds of students from all parts of the world. His chief subjects were Arabic, Syriac, Biblical Archaeology, the physical and historical Geography of Palestine, all demanding highly specialised skill. He was for a time editor of the scientific organ of the Institute “Biblica”, and contributed regularly the Bibliography which covered all fields of Scripture studies. He also edited the more ‘popular’ “Verbum Domini”, where articles in his elegant Latin often appeared. His learned research articles gained him the name of high erudition even with those who could not accept some of his conclusions. Perhaps the finest publication of his Roman period was the study of the religion of Islam in Huby's Christus. Some of his work, especially his identification of the site of the House of Caiphas, brought him into controversy with the great Dominican scholars of Jerusalem. When the dust had settled, the new Dictionnaire de la Bible entrusted the subject in question to Fr. Power.
Returning finally to Milltown Park in 1938, at the age of sixty, Fr. Power began an Indian summer which was to be perhaps the most fruitful period of his life. In 1941 he added exegesis of the New Testament to his classes on the old, and took on the duties of prefect of studies. His lectures were clear and solid, and he shirked no amount of repetition to drive home what had to be known - a trait very welcome to students heavily burdened with examinations. The project of a complete English commentary on the Bible found in him an enthusiastic supporter, and his scholarship and industry made him a valued contributor. Nor only did he fulfil his own engagements punctually, but he took up tasks where others defaulted. It is hardly too much to say that without him the Commentary would not have been published for many years more, nor would it have reached the standard it did in the time. To the remuneration of the 200,000 words he wrote, the publishers added a substantial sum in recognition of the special part he played in its production. The relentless energy he put into this work was astonishing in so frail and stooped a frame, racked as it was by the paroxysms of a cough which had been chronic since his early days in Rome. He wore out at his work, but it was well done.
He was fully conscious during his last illness, which lasted only a day, and he died in sentiments of tranquil hope. Priests wept unashamedly at his graveside. None could recall a harsh or an uncharitable remark from his lips, but all remembered his patient and humble obedience, the fervour of his Mass, office and beads, his courageous devotion to duty. Many regretted the loss of a prudent kind and understanding confessor and his friends inside and outside the Society, in many parts of the country, mourned a sympathetic and self-effacing companion. It was well to have known this model of work and prayer. He had joined the Society with the clear purpose of serving God there perfectly. His merciful Judge knows how loyally he kept his word.

Irish Province News 29th Year No 1 1954


of the late Father Edmund Power
It was only a few days ago that I heard from Fr. Sutcliffe, S.J. of the death of Fr. Edmund Power, S.J., our colleague for the past ten years in the production of A Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture, and I should like to express on behalf of the other contributors and myself our deep sorrow at your loss and ours. I said Mass for him the day after I heard the news and am making a 30-day memento, which is the same as we always do for the brethren of our own Community.
Fr. Power's part in the production of our Commentary was in valuable and can hardly be overestimated. From our first approach to him early in 1944, be was an enthusiastic supporter of the project, and so far as I can gather, he devoted the greater part of the next seven years to writing a series of articles and commentaries, the learning, balance and breadth of which are amongst the greatest adornments of our work. Indeed, without bis amazing industry and energy it is difficult to see how we could ever have completed our task. His helpfulness and willingness to undertake assignments unfulfilled by others showed the breadth of his character, and none of the many great calls we made on him but was cheerfully taken up and completed to our great satis faction. Both from his and our point of view, it was providential that in his last years we were able fully to utilise those great stores of learn ing and experience that he had built up in the course of a most distinguished career.
My own personal contact with him was unfortunately limited to one personal flying visit to Milltown Park in 1945, where I was most hospitably received and entertained. I always received the greatest personal consideration from him at every time and I was always struck by his humility in consulting and sometimes deferring to a much younger and less knowledgeable person. I should appreciate very much receiving a copy of his obit card and of his obituary notice.
Bernard Orchard

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Edmund Power 1878-1953
Fr Edmund Power was born of farming stock near Herbertstown County Limerick. His early years of farm life gave him a strong body, which stood him in good stead during his arduous years of study.

He was educated by the Christian Brothers in Limerick. He went first to Maynooth, and when he had finished the Philosophy courses, he entered the novitiate at Tullabeg. He did his studies abroad and was ordained in 1912.

He was then sent to the Biblical Institute, where he spent the next 24 years. He contributed to many learned magazines, including “Studies” and “Christus”. He took a major part in th compilation of the Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture.

He returned to Dublin in 1938 to teach Old and New testament Studies at Milltown Park. His many virtues made him much beloved. He died there on August 3rd 1953.

Purcell, John, 1858-1931, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/2015
  • Person
  • 16 February 1858-01 June 1931

Born: 16 February 1858, Gorey, Co Wexford
Entered: 31 May 1884, Loyola House, Dromore, County Down
Final Vows: 15 August 1895, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 01 June 1931, Tullabeg, Co Offaly

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

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 6th Year No 4 1931
Obituary :
Br John Purcell
Brother Purcell is another whom the Province has recently mourned. His life in the Society was a long fifty years - all but two - and a useful one.
He was born m 1858 and entered at Dromore in 1884. From 1886 to 1897 he was cook at Dromore, Tullabeg, the Crescent, and Gardiner St. For the next thirty years he was dispenser, and in charge up the servants in Gardiner St., Milltown, Mungret, Tullabeg, the Crescent, and Belvedere. 1929 saw him Ad dom. in Mungret. Towards the end of the years he went in failing health to Tullabeg. Last summer he was hobbling round on a stick, hoping that he would yet be fit for work, but as winter went on he became steadily worse. Through the last difficult weeks of his illness he was devotedly nursed by Bro. Colgan. He died peacefully on June 2nd.
Br Purcell was held in affectionate esteem by those who knew him. Fr. Henry once naively expressed this regard. When Rector in Tullabeg he used to take coffee with the Brothers on St Alphonsus' Day. On one of these occasions, he said a few words about the Saint, and added with a twinkle in his eye, “And I may say, Bro. Purcell, that I consider you are like St. Alphonsus in all respects except one:, Brother Purcell smiled appreciatingly and asked modestly, “What might that be, Your Reverence?”, “You were never married”.
If fidelity to prayer, to work, to sell-denial, make one like St Alphonsus, Brother Purcell resembled him. When his hands could no longer work, they constantly held his rosary. He was especially devout to Our Lady. In Belvedere he took pride in her altarino, gladly receiving for it gifts of flowers from the boys across the counter of the sweet shop. His work was valued and he treasured appreciations of it which those over him expressed and especially that of Fr. General : “Hic optimus manductor”.
If it is true that his temper was naturally quick, it is also true that he spared no pains to curb it.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Brother John Purcell 1858-1931
Br John Purcell was one of those who did their noviceship in Dromore, which he entered in 1884 at the age of 26.
He spent his life in the Society, two years short of his jubilee, as cook and dispenser in most of our houses. In 1929, his health began to fail and he went to Tullabeg to recuperate, but he grew steadily worse. His last illness was painful, but he bore it heroically, dying peacefully on June 2nd 1931.
He was held in affectionate esteem by all, and it was Fr Henry who said of him that he resembled St Alphonsus Rodriguez in all save one respect, that he had never married.
He was especially devout to Our Lady, whose altarino in Belvedere he tended with loving care. He was a man of naturally quick temper, but spared no pains to curb it.

Redmond Michael, 1819-1876, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/2033
  • Person
  • 15 August 1819-01 September 1876

Born: 15 August 1819, Moneytucker, County Wexford
Entered: 09 October 1849, Frederick, MD, USA - Marylandiae Province (MAR)
Final vows: 15 August 1860
Died: 01 September 1876, Holy Family Church, Philadelphia, PA, USA - Marylandiae Province (MAR)

Redmond, Bartholomew, 1769-1841, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/2034
  • Person
  • 26 August 1769-22 November 1841

Born: 26 August 1769, County Wexford
Entered: 01 October 1809 - Marylandiae Province (MAR)
Final vows: 02 February 1821
Died: 22 November 1841, Georgetown, Washington DC, USA - Marylandiae Province (MAR)

Redmond, John, 1859-1879, Jesuit novice

  • IE IJA J/2036
  • Person
  • 08 August 1859-06 May 1879

Born: 08 August 1859, County Wexford
Entered: 09 October 1878, Milltown Park, Dublin
Died: 06 May 1879, County Wexford

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

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He had his early training at Tullabeg College.

Early in his Noviceship he developed decline and was forced to return home, where he died 06 May 1879.
He was considered a youth of great promise and his death was greatly regretted by all.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan : Admissions 1859-1948 - Died at home in 1st year of lung disease

Rice, Stephen, 1625-1699, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2047
  • Person
  • 03 April 1625-07 January 1699

Born: 03 April 1625, Dingle, County Kerry
Entered: 20 May 1648, Kilkenny
Ordained: 13 March 1660, Louvain, Belgium
Final Vows: 03/ November 1664
Died: 07 January 1699, Dublin Residence - Romanae Province (ROM)

Alias James Flent
Superior of Mission 08 October 1672

Had studied 2 years Philosophy before Ent. Taught Humanities 16 years. Was Superior of Irish Mission
1666 Is living near New Ross teaching school at his Boarding School. Preaches Catechetics in the country and does parochial work. Very good. On Mission 5 years. Has good talents with great fitness for catechising and teaching boys.
1679-1682 Minister and Prefect of Boarders at Irish College Poitiers
There is at Clongowes a “Praxis Episcopalis” Ed 1618 in which is written “P Ig. Rice”

1660 or 1662 Sent to Ireland from Professed House at Antwerp
1662 Living in New Ross where he kept a boarding school, and was engaged in Preaching, Catechising etc, and also occasionally acting as PP
1672 Superior of the Mission, and recommended for the same office in 1697 . Father Kelly, Rector at Poitiers, in a letter to the General, recommends Stephen Rice to be the Superior of the Mission again in a letter dated 26 May 1697 (Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)
He is the author of a long and most interesting history of the Irish Mission SJ 1669-1675 (cf Foley’s Collectanea)
Highly eulogised in letters of the martyred Archbishop Plunkett to the General Oliva, dated Dublin 22 November 1672 and Armagh 31 January 1673
Much praised for learning, zeal, eloquence, holiness etc, by Primate Plunket and Dr Peter Talbot
Note from No Ch Name (actually George) Murphy :
Named in an Italian letter, dated Dublin 22 November 1672, ad written by the Martyr, the Archbishop Oliver Plunket, Primate of Ireland, to Father General Oliva, in which, after expressing his affectionate regard for the Society, and informing him of the meritorious labours of Fathers Rice and Ignatius Brown at Drogheda, he speaks of Father Murphy as a good Theologian, and excellent religious man, a man of great talent, and a distinguished preacher in the Irish language. (cf Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of James and Phyllis née Fanning (daughter of Edmund of Limerick) and brother of Br Nicholas Rice (LEFT?)
Studied Humanities and Philosophy under the Jesuits at Kilkenny before Ent 20 May 1648 Kilkenny
A year after First Vows he was sent to Flanders for Regency before Theology at Louvain where he was Ordained 13 March 1660
1662 Sent to Ireland and initially to Limerick
1663-1670 Sent to join Stephen Gellous at New Ross, where he taught Humanities and Rhetoric for the next seven years
1670-1672 Went to Drogheda to organise the College there which was opened by Blessed Oliver Plunket.
1672-1678 Superior of the Mission 08/10/1672. A fresh wave of persecution meant that the schools had to be closed and missionary work carried on in secret. During his term of office the Irish College, Poitiers was established, not only as a school for boys, but also a refuge for old, inform or exiled Irish Missioners. Before he finished Office he wrote at length to the General regarding the Irish Mission 1669-1675.
1678-1682 At the time of the Oates's Plot, 1678, he was arrested and then deported. He went to Poitiers and was Minister of the Irish College until 1682
1682 Sent back to Ireland and Limerick. After the surrender of Limerick he came to Dublin as Consultor of the Mission, and he died there 07 January 1699, and is buried in St. Catherine’s Churchyard

◆ James B Stephenson SJ The Irish Jesuits Vol 1 1962
Stephen Rice (1672-1675)

Stephen Rice, son of James Rice, of Dinglicoush, and Phyllis, daughter of Edmund Tanning, of Limerick, was born at Dingle on 3rd April, 1625. He made his early studies up to philosophy at the College of Kilkenny, where he entered the Novitiate of the Society on 20th May, 1648. In 1651 he was sent to Flanders, where, after the usual course of teaching and study, he was ordained priest on 13th March, 1660, during his fourth year of theology at Louvain. On his return to Ireland he was stationed first at Limerick (1662), but next year he was sent to New Ross, where he taught school for seven years. He made his solemn profession of four vows at Dublin on 3rd November, 1664. In 1670 he went to Drogheda to conduct the College opened there by the Blessed Oliver Plunket. On 8th October, 1672, he was appointed Superior of the Mission. A fresh outburst of persecution caused the closing of our schools, and the ordinary ministrations of the Society had to be carried on in secret. During Fr Rice's term of office the Irish College of Poitiers was founded as a house of refuge for old, infirm, or exiled missioners. Before leaving office he wrote a long report on the work of the Society in Ireland from 1669 to 1675. At the time of Oates's pretended Plot (1678) he was arrested and banished. He went to Poitiers, and acted as Minister of the Irish College till 1682, when he returned to Limerick. After the surrender of Limerick he came to Dublin, as Consultor of the Mission, and died there on 7th January, 1699.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Stephen Rice SJ 1625-1699
Stephen Rice was born in Dingle in 625. Educated at our school in Kilkenny, he entered the noviceship there in 1648. Ordained at Louvain in 1660, the year of the Restoration of Charles II, he was stationed first at Limerick, then at New Ross, in which town he taught school for seven years.

At the request of Blessed Oliver Plunkett he opened a school in Drogheda, where he had 150 pupils, besides 40 Protestant gentlemen who attended classes in 1670.

Two years later he was made Superior of the Mission. During the disturbance caused by the Titus Oates Plot, he went to Poitiers, where he acted as Minister.

However, in 1682 he managed to return to Ireland and he worked in Limerick. After the surrender of that city to the Williamites he came to Dublin as Consultor of the Mission, and he died there in January 7th, 1699.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
RICE, STEPHEN, began his Noviceship at Kilkenny, and in the sequel became a leading man amongst his Brethren. The venerable Primate Archbishop Plunkett, of glorious memory,* in a letter addressed from Dublin on the 22nd of November, 1672, to the General S. J. Father John P. Oliva, extols Father Rice then Superior of his brethren, for his learning, disinterested and indefatigable zeal, fervid eloquence, remarkable discretion, and profound religious virtue; he adds, that this good Father has all the modest diffidence of a Novice: that he is a true son of St. Ignatius, and full of the spirit of the Institute. In a second letter to the same, dated Armagh, 30th of January, 1673, the worthy Archbishop repeats his unqualified commendation of this meritorious Father. His Grace of Dublin, Archbishop P. Talbot, held him in no less esteem. We have this Rev. Superior’s well written report of the Irish Mission of the Society, from the year 1669 to the 15th of July, 1675, and which has furnished several details for these biographical Sketches. I find by a letter dated Poitiers, 20th of May, 1097, that he was thus recommended by its Rector, F. Kelly, to the General Gonzales, to resume the Government of his Brethren in Ireland : “Rev. Father Stephen Rice, who, about 20 years since, was Superior of the Mission, appears to me eminently qualified to fill that office again, unless his age and strength may incapacitate him for the labour”. When the good old man descended into the tomb, I have inquired in vain.

  • The head of this illustrious victim of legal murder, is respectfully preserved in the Convent at Drogheda. How true is the remark, that “Calumny spread, no matter how, will frequently prove an Overmatch for candour, truth, and innocence, until time has applied his Touchstone, and proved the temper of the Metal!”

Roche, Ignatius, d 1639, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2057
  • Person
  • d 26 November 1639

Born: County Wexford
Entered: c 1703, Salamanca, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Died: 26 November 1639, Monterey, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1726-1729 Superior of Irish Mission
1730 Rector of Poitiers

Writes from Waterford 08 January 1734 and 25 May 1739

A Book of the old Waterford Library SJ read “Ign Roche SJ” 1739

Rochford, Laurence, 1606-1649, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2063
  • Person
  • 1606-19 December 1649

Born: 1606, County Wexford
Entered: 02 February 1634, Seville, Spain - Baeticae Province (BAE)
Ordained: - pre Entry
Died: 19 December 1649, Wexford Residence

1636 At Irish College Seville - presides over disputaciones of the students
1637-1639 At Irish College Seville Consultor, Admonitor, Spiritual Father, Prefect and Superintendent of the Theologians and Philosophers

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1634 In BAE (Irish Ecclesiastical Record)
1636 At Seville, February, was Prefect of Conference and Confessor
1638 Came to Irish Mission from Spain and stationed at Wexford
A joint letter from him and Oliver Eustace in favour of Dr French is at Trinity College.

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Was probably already a priest when he went to Irish College Seville 15 August 1630. He was a very brilliant student and in 1632 and 1633 was chosen to represent the College in the public disputations conducted in the city at the College of San Hermengildo. According to the Diario of the College, he had finished his studies with credit before Ent 02 February 1634 Seville
1636-1637 After First Vows he returned to Irish College Seville as Spiritual Father and Prefect of the public Oratory
1637 Given permission to be sent to Ireland and Wexford, for which he had volunteered where he spent all of his working life in Ireland, teaching Humanities and as Operarius
His date of death 19 December 1649 is somewhat dubious, as he is not mentioned in the Visitor Mercure Verdier’s exhaustive Catalogue of the Mission dated 24 June 1649

Rochford, Richard, 1822-1909, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/379
  • Person
  • 11 August 1822-15 February 1909

Born: 11 August 1822, County Wexford
Entered: 02 December 1859, Beaumont, England (ANG)
Ordained: - pre Entry
Final vows: 15 August 1873
Died: 15 February 1909, Coláiste Iognáid, Galway

by 1877 in Maryland (MAR) working

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He spent most of his life in the Society, which he entered as a Priest, as an Operarius in Limerick and Galway. He was sent to America to collect alms for the Church in Galway. He was sent to Belvedere for a short time, but returned to Galway, and died there 15 February 1909

Paraphrase of excerpts from an Obituary Notice for Richard Rochford :
“...... Though he had reached a green old age, his death was sudden and unexpected. A man of uncommonly hale constitution, he continued until within a fortnight of his peaceful passing away to celebrate daily Mass, and to follow with edifying punctuality all the duties of community life. After saying Mass on the Feast of the Purification, he began to complain of a slight cold. He was advised by doctors to stay in bed for a few days, but up to the day before nobody suspected he was close to death. On that day before the doctor who noticed an alarming symptom, decided that the Last Rites should be administered. The following evening, having just received a final absolution he calmly passed away.
Born in Wexford in 1822. His early education was received as far apart as Washington, USA and Clongowes. He then went to Maynooth where he was Ordained for his local Diocese of Ferns. As a Priest he taught at St Peter’s College Wexford.
He then Entered the Society of Jesus 02 December 1859, and after First Vows divided his time between Crescent and Coláiste Iognáid. In both cities he was beloved by all who knew him. He was not a man of strikingly brilliant talent, but he did possess a simple faith and tender piety. He was unworldly, and utterly sincere in all his dealings, both with God and man. Whether in sermon or ordinary conversation, every word he spoke was with utter conviction. His sermons were more often very direct and about practice rather than belief.
He had a great love for his native land of Wexford. He loved a good joke, but two topics were excluded - Religion and Patriotism.
He was a man free from doubt in his faith, and he was heard declare that the was not conscious of holding the Articles of Catholic Belief with any more freedom from doubt than he was conscious of holding the principles of Irish Nationality and her right to make her own laws.
During his early life in America he seems to have been filled with a love of free institutions, and this remained with him to the end. In the 1870’s it was his privilege to visit America once more, where he collected the money that paid for the beautiful High Altar, in many-coloured marble, which adorns St Ignatius’ Church, and on which his requiem Mass was performed in front of a large congregation.”

At one time he had very strong political views.

Rochfort, Robert, 1530-1588, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2064
  • Person
  • 1530-19 June 1588

Born: 1530, County Wexford
Entered: the Society 05 December 1564, Professed House, Rome, Italy - Romanae Province (ROM)
Final Vows: 1575
Died: 19 June 1588, at Sea in The Armada - “in classe quel ibat in Angliam” - Lusitaniae Province (LUS)

1567: He is being sent by Fr Borgia to Canisius “as he is one of the most talented of the pupils of Fr Pereira, Prof Philosophy at the Roman College, and advanced in virtue” (Letters of Borgia Vol III p510).
1567: “Robertus or Rochford Hibernus” at Dillingen in November (Richard Fleming there at the same time) - his talent at Rome having been noteworthy
1576: At Paris College Age 30.
1587: At St Anthony’s College Lisbon, Age 44, Soc 22, teaching Latin and Catechism. Said to be teaching Ireland under the Bishop of Cork -Tanner, an ex Jesuit) VAT Arch Inghilterra 1.308)

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica”
Probably a brother of Charles - who only gets mentioned as being in Youghal 1588.
He was a great linguist; Prisoner; Missioner.
His name often appears in the Anglo-Irish State Papers.
He died on board a Spanish man-of-war; “a Martyr of Charity”; Had taught school in Youghal in 1575.
It is probably he of whom Stanihurst describes “born in the county of Wexford, is a proper divine, an exact philosopher and very good antiquary”.
In 1581 Matthew Lamport of Waterford and Matthias Lamport a Dublin PP were hanged for harbouring Fr Rochford; Robert Meiler, Edeard Cheevers, John O’Lahy and two sailors were hanged, drawn and quartered for bringing him from Belgium to Ireland; Richard French, A Wexford Priest, for harbouring him, was imprisoned in Dublin and died of misery in prison (IbIg).
Mentioned in a letter of Edmund Tanner, Cork 11 October 1577, as keeping a school at Youghall with Charles, spreading on every side the good odour of the Society of Jesus (Oliver, Stonyhurst MSS).
Highly spoken of in a letter from Henry Fitzsimon in a letter in Irish Ecclesiastical Record, March 1873 p 262, and is frequently mentioned in "Hibernia Ignatiana".
We know of his death 19 June 1588 from an entry in “Bibl. de Bourg. MS n 6397, liber primus defunctorum SJ in variis provinciis, Brussels” : “Balthazar de Almeida (died) in a ship which was proceeding to England, 17 June 1588. P Robertus Rocheford (died) on the same ship, 19/06/1588”. They were probably Chaplains in the Spanish Armada.

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Robert Rochfort 1530-1588
After the departure of Fr David Wolfe from Ireland, there were two Jesuits left there, Frs Charles Leae and Robert Rochfort. The latter was born in Wexford in 1530 and entered the Society at Rome in 1564. St Peter Canisius was his Professor at Dilingen in 1567.

Having come to the Irish Mission, he succeeded in maintaining a school in Youghal, in spite of continual persecution until 1575, with the aid of Fr Leae. This school was highly praised by Edmund Tanner, Bishop of Cork and former Jesuit.

Fr Rochfort was closely associated with Viscount Baltinglass in the rebellion of 1581. On his account many people suffered imprisonment and death for harbouring him. The English seem to have had a great dread of him and his name is constantly mentioned in State Papers of the time. Finally, seeing how dangerous it was for people to harbour him, he withdrew to Lisbon in 1532.

In Lisbon he laboured for some years to the great spiritual advantage of Catholics from Ireland and England and other nations, and whom his skill in many languages enabled him to instruct and assist. According to common report, he died in Lisbon in 1588. However, in a list of Defuncti of the Society we find the following “Balthazar Almeida died in a ship which was proceeding to England June 17th 1588. P Robert Rochford died in the same ship, June 19th 1588. He had been a prisoner for the faith and died a victim of charity”. It would seem that he had been a chaplain to one of the ships of the Spanish Armada

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
ROCHFORD, ROBERT, is mentioned with honour in the Epistle Dedicatory of Father Fitzsimon’s Treatise on the mass, printed in 1611. In a letter of Father Edmund Tanner, dated Cork, the 11th of October, 1577, I read, “Rev. Father Charles and Master Robert Rochford spread on every side the sweetest odour of the Institute of the Society of Jesus. They keep a school in the town of Youghall, in the Dioceses of Cork, Munster : their auditors and the townspeople are daily trained in the Christian doctrine, and the frequentation of the Sacraments and good Morals, as well as the miserable circumstances of the times will permit, but not without molestation; yet God gives them perseverance and great benefit to their Hearers”.

Scott, Patrick, 1826-1858, Jesuit scholastic

  • IE IJA J/2099
  • Person
  • 17 October 1826-22 February 1858

Born: 17 October 1826, Tintern, New Ross, County Wexford
Entered: 12 September 1853, Amiens, France - Franciae Province (FRA)
Died: 22 February 1858, Angers, Maine-et-Loire, France - Franciae Province (FRA)

Sherlock, Paul, 1595-1646, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2127
  • Person
  • 14 August 1595-08 August 1646

Born: 14 August 1595, County Waterford
Entered: 30 September 1612, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: 05 June 1621, Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Final Vows: 18 October 1628. Irish College Salamanca, Spain
Died: 08 August 1646, Irish College, Salamanca, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)

Alias Sherlog

1614-1622 At Valladolid Age 18 Studying Theology, proficiency above mediocrity
1617 In CAST Age 18 Soc 4
1625 At Compostella Age 28 Soc 13. More than ordinary ability for preaching. He is confessor and Preacher
1626 In Spain
1633-1645 Rector of Irish College Salamanca. Has been Lecturer on Controversial subjects. A man of much learning with a talent for composing commentaries on the Scriptures. Excellent disposition, talent and judgement. Best talent for Government, teaching and commenting on Scriptures. In addition excellent at conducting business with people of the world. Much prudence and learning, firmness in dealing with others. Talent for writing and governing. A Religious spirit.
Left his books to the Irish Jesuit Mission, but especially for the Residence at Waterford.

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
Was of a Waterford family, but it has been seen stated that he was born in Wexford; Writer of commentaries on Holy Writ; Professor of extraordinary virtue and held in great esteem in Spain. (Foley’s Collectanea)
He obtained a high repute both as a Theologian and Administrator, and was Rector at Salamanca and Compostella for twenty years.
1631-1646 Rector of Salamanca (Irish Ecclesiastical Record September 1874). he was also a Professor of Controversy for seven years, and also for a time of Sacred Literature and Theology, wit a great repute for learning. As a result he was chosen as Censor of Doctrine by the Sacred Inquisition. he assiduously applied himself day and night to a study of the ancient Fathers. Weak health prevented him from leaving even more evidence of his learning and erudition.
He was a man of austere life, who subjected his body to severe inflictions in daily disciplines, hair-cloths and other practices; was much given to prayer and devoted to our Blessed Lady, fasting and other mortifications on the vigils of her feasts. Some are of the opinion that he received Divine Illustrations in prayer, and assistance in the rapid composition of his writings.
A Catalogue of Irish Jesuits for 1617 ((Irish Ecclesiastical Record August 1874) states his age at that time to be 18, and four years in Society.
He is identical with a Fr “Paul Shirley” noticed in “Records SJ” Vol V p 475, in a note citing Dodd’s “Church History”, who mistranslates the name given by Southwell as Sherlogus into Shirley.
Southwell in “Biblio Script SJ” makes an interesting note about him : he was of a family of clan of Waterford (Menapiensis); born on the vigil of the Assumption 1595, of devoted Catholic parents; was admitted to the Society on the day before the Kalends of October 1612 at the Irish College Salamanca
(In pencil) Wrote a sketch of William Bathe
(cf de Backer “Biblioth. des Écrivains SJ” for his writings) (cf Archivum Hibernicum Vol VI pp 157-74 for a biography)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of Walter and Bela (Beatrice) née Leonard. Brother of Patrick
He had spent three months at Irish College Salamanca before Ent 30 Septmber 1612 Villagarcía
He completed his Noviceship at Medina del Campo
1614-1617 After First Vows he was sent to St Ambrose, Valladolid for Philosophy.
1617-1621 he then was sent for Theology first at Valladolid and then to finish at Compostela where he was Ordained 05 June 1621, and graduated with a “Grand Act”
1621-1622 He was then sent to Valladolid to teach
1622-1624 He taught at Monterey and Pamplona
1624/25-1628 Rector of Irish College Santiago after the death of William White
1629-1646 Rector of Irish College Salamanca 01 May 1629, succeeding Thomas Briones. For most of his active life in the Society he was occupied with administration but this did not prevent him from engaging in the deeper study of theology, particularly in Holy Scripture. (His published works are listed in Somervogel) For the historian, however, the 'autobiographia' written in 1643 is of most interest. He died in Office at Salamanca 08 August 1646
Like his brother Patrick, Paul also volunteered for service on the Irish Mission

◆ Royal Irish Academy : Dictionary of Irish Biography, Cambridge University Press online :
Sherlock (Sherlog), Paul
by Deirdre Bryan

Sherlock (Sherlog), Paul (1595–1646), Jesuit priest and theologian, was born in August 1595 at or near Waterford city, reputedly the son of Walter Sherlock and his wife Beatrice Leonard. He was a descendant of James Sherlock of Gracedieu who, in 1494, was granted extensive lands in Co. Waterford by Henry VII in reward for his family's loyalty to the Tudor monarchy. The Sherlocks, who served frequently as mayors of Waterford city between 1492 and 1642, were one of the foremost catholic mercantile and landowning families of east Waterford.

As a young boy Sherlock attained a proficiency in Latin under the tutelage of a catholic schoolmaster in Waterford. Like many of his contemporaries, he left Ireland for Spain, aged 16, to study at the Jesuit-run Irish College at Salamanca. He landed in Bilbao in May 1612 and reached Salamanca at the beginning of July. Together with Thomas Vitus (Wyse), a fellow-student from Waterford, he was admitted to the Society of Jesus at Salamanca on 30 September 1612. He spent the first two years of his novitiate at Villagarcia and Medina del Campo before travelling to Santiago de Compostela in 1614. Over the next seven years he studied philosophy and theology at the Jesuit college at Valladolid and at Santiago, where in 1621 he was ordained. In 1624 he succeeded Thomas White (qv), who had died in 1622, as rector of the Irish college at Compostela; four years later he was appointed rector of the Irish college at Salamanca, where he remained until his death in 1646.

A highly educated man, Sherlock taught scholastic theology and divinity both at Salamanca and Compostella. He published many theological works which earned him considerable praise from scholars in Spain and France. His most important work was a combination of ecclesiastical history and devotional commentary based on the text of the Song of Solomon; it was published in three folio volumes: Anteloquia ethica et historica in Canticum Canticorum (Lyons, 1634), Commentarium in duo priora capita Cantici Canticorum (Lyons, 1637), and Commentarium in reliqua captia Cantici Canticorum (Lyons, 1640), all three volumes being reprinted in Venice in 1641. He dedicated the work to Fernando de Vera, bishop of Cuzco, whose financial generosity, combined with the earnings accrued through publication, were sufficient to enable Sherlock to found a library at the Irish college at Salamanca. Two other works, written under the pseudonym of Paulus Leonardus, were also published: Responsio ad expostulationes recentium quorundam theologorum contra scientiam mediam (Lyons, 1644) and Antiquitatum Hebraicarum Dioptra (Lyons, 1651).

In April 1642 and again in February 1643, Robert Nugent, superior of the Jesuits in Ireland, wrote to the general of the order, Viteilleshi, requesting the return to Ireland of Sherlock and another Irish Jesuit, Luke Wadding (a professor at Salamanca and cousin of the Franciscan Luke Wadding (qv) (1588–1657)), declaring both priests to be ‘absolutely necessary to this mission’ (Grogan, 94). Neither priest returned.

Sherlock's religious practices of flagellation, wearing hair shirts, and fasting eventually eroded his health. It was believed by some that he received direct communication from heaven while praying and writing. He died 9 August 1646 at the Irish college, aged 50 years, and was buried in Salamanca.

After his death the Jesuits claimed that the library he founded at the Irish college was the property of their society and not the university. Four Irish students of the college took proceedings in the court of the chancellor of the university, successfully recovering the books acquired by Sherlock. In 1919 a six-foot brass plaque was erected in Waterford's catholic cathedral commemorating a unique group of priests, native to the diocese, who were eminent in the church both at home and abroad. Paul Sherlock is among those commemorated.

J. Ware, The writers of Ireland (1764), 120–21; DNB; Anon. [attributed to Mother Mary Berchmans / Margaret Mary Sherlock], ‘Distinguished Waterford families: Sherlock’, Journal of the Waterford and South East Ireland Archaeological Society, ix (1906), 120–28, 171–5, x (1907), 42–4, 171–83; Amalio Huarte (ed.), ‘El. P. Paulo Sherlock: una autobiografia inédita’, Archiv. Hib., vi (1917), 156–74; P. Power, Waterford saints and scholars (1920); K. Kelly, ‘Father Paul Sherlock S.J.’, Decies: Journal of the Old Waterford Society, i (1976); William Nolan and Thomas P. Power (ed.), Waterford: history and society (1992), 189, 218; Patrick Grogan, ‘The Sherlocks of Waterford’, Decies: Journal of the Old Waterford Society, lvi (2000), 81–94; ODNB

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973
Father Paul Sherlock 1593-1646
Paul Sherlock of Waterford entered the Society at the age of 17 at Salamanca. As a Theologian he gained a great reputation, and was equally successful at government. For twenty years he was Rector of the Irish Colleges at Salamanca and Santiago.

He had very weak health, nevertheless he led a very austere life, and subjected his body to severe inflictions in daily disciplines, hair cloths and other penances. He himself says in a diary meant for publication :
“Here in Santiago I determined to wrote on the Canticles of Solomon, and to that end I have studied indefatigably, desiring in this way to imitate the Fathers of the Church. I did without a great part of my sleep at night. I continued in Salamanca for two or three years with greater rigour, for the cold nights of that place were especially mortifying. In 1629 I began to prepare the first volume of the work on the Canticles of Solomon for the press. To this end I received great strength from a vision of St Brendan the Irish Abbot”.

He died on August 9th 1646 at the age of 51, with a great reputation for holiness.

◆ George Oliver Towards Illustrating the Biography of the Scotch, English and Irish Members SJ
SHERLOCK, PAUL, was born at Waterford, on the 14th of August 1595. Well grounded in Classical literature, he entered himself in the Irish College at Salamanca, in 1612, and on the 30th of September the same year enlisted under the banner of St. Ignatius. As a Theologian he attained to the highest reputation; for his ability in governing he was equally distinguished; and for the long period of 20 years, during which he was Rector at Salamanca and Compostella, he secured the esteem and attachment of his Brethren and Subjects. Application was made to the General of the Order on various occasions by F. Robert Nugent, the Superior of the Irish Mission, that his services might he confined to his native country; but, under the circumstances, it was judged expedient to continue F. Sherlock in Spain, and at Salamanca he terminated his useful career on the 9th of August, 1646. Gifted with talents of the first Order, and indefatigable in labor, he would have left numerous evidences of his genius and erudition, if his constitution had been stronger, or his life more extended; still we had from his pen,

  1. “Antiloquia in Canticum Canticorum”. 3 vols. fol. Lyons, 1633, 1637, 1640, under the borrowed name of Leonardus Hibernicus.
  2. “Vindiciae Scientiae Media”. 4to, Lyons. 1644.
  3. A posthumous work, “De Hebraeorum Republica”. Fol. Lyons, 1651
    *I believe the Family of Sherlock or Schyrlock came from Chester, with the Bagots. - From Devonshire emigrated the Cogans, and Fitz-Stephens.

Sinnott, Edward, 1791-1842, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/406
  • Person
  • 10 August 1791-20 May 1865

Born: 10 August 1791, County Wexford
Entered: 07 October 1821, Clongowes Wood College SJ, Clane, County Kildare
Died: 20 May 1865, Kolkata, Bengal, India

by 1839 in Calcutta Mission; We have a date of death from somewhere and he disappears from the 1844 Catalogue, having been in up to 1841

Stafford, Gaspar, 1698-1743, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2146
  • Person
  • 10 May 1698-21 February 1743

Born: 10 May 1698, Wexford Town
Entered: 17 October 1723, Villagarcía, Galicia, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)
Ordained: 27 November 1729, Salamanca, Spain
Final Vows: 15 August 1738, Salamanca, Spain
Died: 21 February 1743, Irish College, Salamanca, Spain - Castellanae Province (CAST)

1732 Rector of Salamanca

◆ Fr Edmund Hogan SJ “Catalogica Chronologica” :
1730-1743 Rector of Salamanca and Professor
1739 One of the Examiners of Father Lisward (Dr McDonald and de Backer “Biblioth. des Écrivains SJ”)

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Son of James and Maria née Devereux
Had begun his Priestly studies at Irish College Salamanca before Ent 17 October 1723 Villagarcía
1725-1727After First Vows he was sent to teach Humanities.
1727-1729 He was then sent to Royal College Salamanca for Theology. He was Ordained there 27 November 1729
1729-1731 Sent to San Sebastián to teach Humanities
1731 Rector of Irish College Salamanca, and he died in Office 21 February 1743
Father Stafford's apostolic zeal and sound learning were well known to contemporary superiors of the mission and many requests were made to the General to have him sent back to Ireland. His Spanish Superiors fought for and held on to him.

Stafford, Richard, 1619-1654, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2148
  • Person
  • 11 December 1619-19 August 1654

Born: 11 December 1619, County Wexford
Entered: 30 July 1648, St Andrea, Rome, Italy (ROM)
Ordained: Rome, Italy - pre Entry
Died: 19 August 1654, Orta San Giulio, Piedmont, Italy

Had studied Philosophy and Theology before Ent
1651 At College of Sezze ROM

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ :
Had already studied and was Ordained at Irish College Rome before Ent 30 July 1648 Rome
1650 After First Vows he was sent to teach Humanities at Sezze and then Orta where he died 19 August 1654
James Relly, historian of the Irish College, Rome, mentions Richard Stafford in his work and paid tribute to his virtuous life which proved so tragically short.

Sutton, Edward, 1726-1754, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2166
  • Person
  • 21 December 1726-30 April 1769

Born: 21 December 1726, County Wexford
Entered: 20 May 1754, Genoa, Italy - Venetiae Province (VEM)
Ordained: Rome - pre entry
Final Vows: 08 August 1764
Died: 30 April 1769, Dublin Residence

◆ Fr Francis Finegan SJ
DOB 21 December 1726 Wexford; Ent 24 May 1754 Genoa; Ord pre Ent Rome;
Had studied at Irish College Rome and was Ordained there before Ent 24 May 1754 Genoa

1754-1758 After First Vows he was sent to teach Humanities at Bastia College, Corsica
1758-1759 Sent to Rome as Spiritual Father and Prefect of Studies at the Irish College
1759-1763 Sent to the English College as Prefect of Studies
1763 Sent as Penitentiary at St Peter’s 24 March 1763 after which his career cannot be traced beyond 08 August 1764

◆ In Old/17

Sweetman, Michael, 1914-1996, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/558
  • Person
  • 20 March 1914-23 October 1996

Born: 20 March 1914, Dublin
Entered: 12 September 1931, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 31 July 1945, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 03 April 1983, Loyola, Eglinton Road, Dublin
Died: 23 October 1996, Glengara Nursing, Glenageary, County Dublin

Part of the St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, 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 :
Sweetman, Michael
by Peter McVerry

Sweetman, Michael (1914–96), Jesuit priest and social reformer, was born 20 March 1914 in Dublin, the seventh child of Roger M. Sweetman (1874–1954), a member of the first dáil, and his wife, Katherine (née Kelly). He had four brothers – Patrick, Rory, Edmond, and Hugh – and six sisters – Maureen, Catherine, Joan, Margaret, Juanita, and Bridget. Following his education at Mount St Benedict's, Gorey, Co. Wexford, and at Clongowes Wood College, Co. Kildare, on 12 September 1931 he joined the Jesuits and studied arts at University College, Dublin, philosophy at Rahan, Tullabeg, Co. Offaly, and theology at Milltown Park, Dublin. He was ordained a priest on 31 July 1945 and completed his studies in theology in 1947.

Sweetman's first appointment was to work in the Jesuit church in Gardiner Street in Dublin. However, within a few months he developed TB. During his long convalescence he began attending the children's court in Dublin, where he developed a lifelong interest in social justice and children's issues. While pursuing this interest he spent the next eighteen years in retreat work in the Jesuit retreat centres at Rathfarnham Castle, Milltown Park, and Manresa House. In 1959 he was appointed superior of the Jesuit community in Manresa House of Spirituality, but was transferred after one year, allegedly for giving most of the goods of the house to the poor. In 1965 he returned to his first ministry, in the Jesuit church in Gardiner Street, and the rest of his life was spent working in the inner city of Dublin and in the socially deprived neighbourhood of Ballymun. He pioneered the Jesuit commitment to the poor by electing to live in the tenement flats of Benburb Street and Summerhill, and, when they were demolished in the late 1970s, in the high-rise flats of Ballymun. Sweetman was also a social reformer, working for improved housing conditions in the 1960s and 1970s and speaking critically at public meetings about the neglect of the poor, which brought him into conflict with the political authorities of the time.

As Sweetman's health began to deteriorate in 1992, his mobility declined and he became very disorientated. In 1994 he returned from Ballymun to live in the community at Gardiner Street, where nursing care was available to him. When his health deteriorated further and he required twenty-four-hour nursing care, he was moved in June 1996 to a nursing home, where he died 23 October 1996.

Irish Province Jesuit Archives; personal knowledge

◆ Jesuits in Ireland :

A life of passion: Peter McVerry SJ

No questions, no judgments
Sat, Dec 20, 2008
THE SATURDAY INTERVIEW: Kathy Sheridan to Fr. Peter McVerry

..........ON JANUARY 1ST, 1979, he opened Tabor House, a three-bedroom flat that became the first hostel for boys aged between 12 and 16 who were sleeping rough. The following year, he moved to a flat in Ballymun with Fr Michael Sweetman, where they asked for a flat to house over-16s – “and to my surprise and their regret ever since, they gave it” – an unfunded, understaffed, chaotic, overcrowded access centre for all-comers, utterly ill-suited to its original purpose.

◆ Interfuse

Interfuse No 132 : Summer 2007


Thomas J Morrissey

This is the first in a series of three. Much of the information on Michael's family life has come from his own recollections and those of his sisters, Joan and Brigid; and on his later life, from his recollections and those of various Jesuits and friends. His recollections are contained in some ten tapes of recorded interviews, two with Gay Byrne and Mike Murphy for Radio Éireann during the 1980s, and the remainder by John Dardis and Jesuit colleagues of Michael at the start of the 1990s. There was also an important interview by Máirín de Búrca in the Sunday Tribune in 1987. Michael's own published writings, though not extensive, are also very informative, Michael asked the present author to write an account of his life, and much of the text was read to him for comment while he was still able to concentrate!

One evening in 1968, the Dublin Housing Action Committee (DHAC) organized a picket on City Hall protesting against the lack of housing for the 10,000 families then on the Corporation's housing list. The usual conglomeration of left-wing political people turned up - predominately members of pre-split Sinn Fein, the Communist Party, the Connolly Youth Movement, and the Irish Communist Organization (ICO). But a few minutes into the picket a tall, thin, rather ascetic-looking priest walked up Cork Hill and joined the picket. The DHAC members were stunned. The theology of liberation and its effects had not yet appeared. The consensus amongst the picketers was that this priest had somehow mistaken the purpose of the protest.... They sent their most respectable-looking member over to speak with the stranger. He turned out to be Fr. Michael Sweetman, SJ, and he said simply that he had much experience of terrible housing conditions in Dublin and that he had promised himself that the first person or group to draw public attention to the problem would get his support. Simple and direct - some might say naive. Fr. Michael later agreed, “I was as green as you could meet. I didn't know that most of the protesters were Communists...I soon learned about the Communists, but I always felt that the doctrine of socialism is far nearer to Christ's message than that of capitalism”.

Thus, Máirín de Búrca, a former Assistant Secretary of Sinn Fein and a member of DHAC, in the Sunday Tribune in 1987, the year of Michael Sweetman's 73rd birthday. The unconventional, independent action, and fearless pursuit of a goal or principle, which she depicted, had been a constant phenomenon in Michael's career; it appears, indeed, to have been a recurring feature in the lives of many distinguished bearers of the family name.

The Sweetman Name
Michael was fascinated at the prominence achieved in Irish history by bearers of the family name: from Milo Sweetman, archbishop of Armagh, who in 1374 successfully foiled the Lord Deputy's plans to dispense with the Irish parliament (1), to Nicholas Sweetman, bishop of Ferns, who in 1774 vehemently opposed the suppression of the Jesuits (2), to John Sweetman, friend of Wolfe Tone, who suffered transportation and the loss of his brewery because of his active involvement in the United Irishmen (3), and to Dom Francis Sweetman, OSB, who ran a celebrated school, Mount St. Benedict, near Gorey, Co. Wexford, and educated many destined to play prominent roles in the history of Ireland, who later paid tribute to his "idealism, self-reliance, and courage" (4). Michael's own father, Roger Mary Sweetman, also displayed the Sweetman traits of independence and courage. A Sinn Fein deputy in Dail Eireann during the Troubles, he resigned in protest at the shooting of policemen, a dangerous protest to make in those days.

Family Background and Glendalough
Roger Sweetman had qualified as a barrister and held a relatively minor civil service post as secretary to the Charitable Donations and Bequests Association. He married Katherine, Aliaga Kelly (Aliaga' testifying to Spanish-Peruvian ancestry on her grandmother's side). They had a large family and lived at 24 Herbert Park, Dublin. Michael Sweetman was born there, the seventh child, on March 20, 1914. That year the fa mily moved to Glendalough, Co. Wicklow. An uncle had died and left a considerable sum of money. With it Roger bought a large house and 1700 acres of varied land: a mountain, woodland, a stretch by the smaller lake on which they had a boat and fishing rights, and just 80 acres of arable land. The house, with its distinctive green shutters, was named Derrybawn. In this setting young Michael grew up and found a dream world. It remained for him throughout his life the ideal place against which to measure all others.

The sense of space and leisure, and indeed freedom, is reflected again and again in Michael's recollections of his youth on radio and in newspaper interviews, Childhood “was happy enough because we were free”. There were the hills and the woods, the streams and the lakes, the swimming and boating, and the echoes of their shouts across the large lake. “You could be out all the morning wherever you liked”. He added that his father “would not be considered liberal or easy-going ...He was a strict man, but it was a very limited strictness. He would let you do what you wanted otherwise”. As an example of “limited strictness”, Michael recalled that they had to be in for dinner at 1 p.m.: “You had to be in for that....dressed and clean....then you could be out all day after that”. Some of his sisters remembered a further requirement: not to raid the orchard, and Michael had been spanked by his father with the back of a brush for disobeying this requirement. He could be very stubborn and willful, one sister who was close to him remarked. When punished for something, he tended to do it again. And there was a dare-devil quality. She recalled her astonishment at seeing him, when he was nine or ten years of age, running over and back across the road in front of a motor car, as if defying it to knock him down. “He was a complex person. He was kind and very sensitive, but could be irritable. Like his father, he had a great honesty, naivety, stubbornness, independence, and determination, and could be stubbornly argumentative”.

In their relatively remote world, without radio or television to attract them, they created their own amusements. In their playroom they used to dress up and do various forms of acting. Some of their productions were in Irish. A frequent theme was the "War of Independence", in which Lloyd George, in particular, was held up to ridicule: an indication of how the serious political issues of the time had found their way into the children's leisurely lives. It was inevitable, given that their father had joined Sinn Fein after 1916 and divided his energies, as he later wrote, “between running a big country place and politics”. He was then “42 years old and well off financially”. (5)

In the background, but the main prevailing influence as the children grew up, was their mother. Michael remembered her as “very religious”, though she “didn't impose” religion on them. Every afternoon she made her way uphill to St. Kevin's Church, and on Saturdays brought flowers from the garden for the altar. Gardening and music were two of her main interests. She promoted family prayers morning and evening; and led by example in her concern for the poor of the area. Undemonstrative in her love, she yet had an uncritical attitude which helped create a caring and relaxed atmosphere, despite the father's disciplinary requirements and the inevitable hubbub and rows in a family of eleven children. Eventually in 1924, at the age of ten, Michael's carefree days at Glendalough came to an end. The civil war was over. He was sent to Mount St. Benedict. Even though his brothers were there, he found it “a horrific change”.

The Restrictive life of Boarding School
By the time Michael went there, the school was greatly run down. It closed the following year, and the three Sweetman brothers, Roger, Edmund, and Michael, were sent to Clongowes. By then, their father's fortune had collapsed, and it was proving difficult to provide for and educate his large family. The boys found that their clothes were shabby compared to those of many of their companions, and they did not enjoy any “extras” at breakfast. They settled in, nevertheless, and made their own friends and went more or less their separate ways. Michael found a place on all the teams - in rugby, cricket, tennis - making up for whatever skills he lacked by his size, energy, enthusiasm and determination.

He spent six years at Clongowes, from 1925 to 1931, and all in all they were happy years. In the Lower Line, he soon made his mark. He was liked by his contemporaries and had leadership
qualities. He was made captain of the Line in his second year. He also got on well with one of the priests in charge, the flamboyant, histrionic, Fr. McGlade. The conditions, as in most boarding schools of the period, were Spartan, and there was tight discipline. Silence was required in the dormitories, and there was an early call; Michael got into the habit of taking a swim each morning about 7 o'clock. He enjoyed the experience in itself, and as a mark. of toughness. There was Mass, which all attended at 7.30, followed by breakfast. Like boarders of every generation, he found the food unsatisfactory, Games, other than outside matches, as he recalled them, were played in one's clothes, and the boys returned to heated rooms in damp clothes which dried on them. There were no hot showers. “After rugby, you could go in for a swim and get clean”. There was a hot bath about once a month. There was no provision for haircuts. Accordingly, as Michael related some forty years later in a radio interview, on their return home their mother “used to always scrub us down, wash us and cleanse us, and delouse us if necessary”.

He enjoyed, nevertheless, the rough and tumble of school life; and the rather wild, mischievous side to him found outlets, particularly in the early years. One of his teachers was the saintly Fr. John Sullivan, who was meant to teach him Greek and geography, but was not noted for class control. Michael's class made life difficult for him, and Michael was prominent in the persecution. In time, he grew in appreciation of Fr. John. “We looked on him as a saint. He dressed very poorly, shabbily. He visited the people in the neighbourhood who were sick”. As spiritual director to the boys, he spoke of the sickness of people, of those “with the whole side of their face eaten away with cancer”. He became a model for Michael. “In my last year, I would go walking with him....He was absolutely genuine, and fearless. He was respected by everyone and loved”. His example stayed with Michael for life. Years later, preaching at Gardiner Street on his memories of Fr. John Sullivan, he indulged his tendency to shock in the guise of jest with the comment that “John was unlike other Jesuits!” John's simplicity, fearlessness, and above all his genuineness, appealed particularly to him. In his own seventies, Michael was to write: “I have come to the conclusion - if you are playing any kind of a part, putting on any kind of an act, you are not being true to yourself”. (6)

In his fifth year he was made a school prefect. In this role he showed he could be strict with small boys, but preserved control without reporting anyone for punishment. He was appointed school captain the next year at the early age of sixteen and a half. He had become noticeably more serious and reflective following a retreat given by a well-known missioner, Fr. Ernest Mackey, who had a way of challenging senior boys, and who, as a result, attracted many to religious life. The Sweetman boys began to do “Mackey's quarter”, ie, to devote a quarter of an hour to prayer each day. He persuaded us, Michael observed, “because it was the tough thing to do. He put it up to you”. And “we did it even when we were camping at home. We were absolutely sold on that”. It involved fifteen minutes in silence in church, or wherever one found oneself. He did not recall that Mackey gave them any special method of prayer. Michael had begun to feel by this time a desire to be a Jesuit, but as his brother Edmund expressed an intention of joining the order, he decided he “wasn't going to follow him”. Then Edmund changed his mind and Michael changed his. He told nobody about his intention. During the summer holidays he informed his parents. They were well disposed, and his mother immediately assured him, “If you ever leave, you are welcome back”. The departure from Glendalough itself was a great wrench. In those days, once one entered a religious order one was usually not allowed home except in the case of a death, or some very serious family illness.

Jesuit Religious Formation
He entered the novitiate at Emo Park, former residence of the Earls of Portarlington, on September 12, 1931. Recently acquired, it was in a dilapidated condition. The duration of the noviceship was two years. It was to prove a difficult time for Michael. Time and again he thought of leaving, and each time decided to stay on. There were 19 novices in his year. Together with the 25 in the second year, they formed a community of 44 young men. Their lives from 5.30 a.m. to about 9.0 p.m.were fully time-tabled. The day began with an hour's mental prayer, followed by mass. After breakfast, time was given to spiritual reading, house work, work in the grounds, vocal and additional mental prayer, Silence reigned, except for a short period of recreation after dinner, and an evening recreation during part of which one was expected to converse in Latin or, on certain evenings, in Irish. There was a villa day, or free day, once a week, given over to walks outside the grounds with a companion chosen for one.

The drudgery and disciplined routine of the years at Emo were given meaning and purpose by the thirty-day retreat. He took his first vows in September, 1933, and moved to Rathfarnham Castle the following day. From there, during the next three years, he was to cycle to University College, then at Earlsfort Terrace, to attend lectures on Latin and Greek. The subjects chosen for him were not those he would personally have preferred, but the allocation was made with the needs of the Jesuit colleges in mind. His time at Rathfarnham, nevertheless, appears to have been a reasonably happy one. Across the three years, there were some 160 scholastics, some of them Australian. On a half-day there were vigorous football matches, and on villa days there were long walks to the Dublin mountains in the autumn, winter and spring, and to the sea in the summer. Michael pushed himself both at study and in physical exercise. He eventually paid the price. He took little precaution against wettings on long walks, and in his third year, when he was probably already tired, he contracted pleurisy, which became wet pleurisy. He recalled that he first felt it in his lungs in the course of a 12-mile walk to Glencree, in the Dublin hills, and back again. He was seven weeks in hospital, and his doctor thought for a while that he would not survive. His degree examination was deferred. On coming out of hospital, he was allowed home to Glendalough to recuperate. It was a wise decision. He relished the space and quiet, and used to wander off by himself and swim on his own in the smaller lake. On recovery, he moved with his contemporaries to Tullabeg to study philosophy, only he had the additional burden of preparing for his BA.

Prefect and Teacher
By the end of three years in Tullabeg, the scholastics had been eight years in formation, and were now more than ready to face the task of teaching and organizing pupils in Jesuit schools. Michael at this stage came into his own. He had become a tall, serious but pleasant man, with an original turn of mind, who had been given additional opportunity for reflection during his illness and recuperation. He was appointed to Clongowes, where he spent the first two years of the Second World War. He was third-line prefect in charge of the youngest boys. He seems to have done well: managing to be friendly with the boys, yet preserving control and gaining their respect without ever resorting to physical punishment.

There was that about his presence and personality which suggested that he could be very tough if they tried to take advantage of him. The position of third-line prefect was demanding both physically and psychologically. He had little teaching, but he was with the boys at every free moment and constantly on his feet. One suspects that he again over-stretched himself. In any event, he was laid up with an inflamed and ulcerated leg which affected his circulation.

For his third year in the colleges, he was given a different experience: a year in a day school, at Crescent College, Limerick. When he arrived there in 1943, he found himself one of a community of twenty: 14 priests, 3 brothers, and 3 scholastics. He enjoyed his time in Limerick, and was given more opportunity to test his capacities as a teacher. These proved exceptional. One pupil, whom Michael had for Religious Knowledge in a junior class at the Crescent, retained fond memories of his style and presence. The pupil's main recollection concerned the use of the catechism. Some questions were set each day to be memorized for the next day. “Mr. Sweetman”, as he was called, took great care to explain in detail the meaning of the questions and answers to be memorized. Next day, after an examination of the lesson, for which there never was punishment but a rebuke, and obvious disappointment when little effort had been made, there followed an invitation to the class to ask any questions they wished relating to the material covered. Often the questions roamed far afield, but every question and questioner was treated with seriousness and respect, with the result that there were always many questions, and always there was an honest response; and if he did not know the answer he would say he did not know but would have the answer for the questioner the next day, and he invariably had. It also stood out in the pupil's memory that the classes were interesting as well as informative; and that if somebody became giddy, as happened from time to time, it was sufficient for the distinctive, drawling Sweetman voice to be raised a pitch, with a nuance of impatience, for the culprit to subside.

As with other scholastics of the period, Michael's spare time was devoted to training school rugby teams in the winter, to coaching tennis and athletics in the spring and early summer, and to bicycle trips in May, June, and September. It was the era of the bicycle renaissance, for scarcity of petrol due to the war had driven virtually all motor vehicles off the road. And the experience of the war in this respect, and in that of the rationing of food and clothing, was more clearly felt in a city school than in the self contained world of boarding college and farm. Michael, and the boys who accompanied him, enjoyed journeys to scenic areas such as Dromore Lake and the Clare Glens where they swam and picnicked. Following a full year of teaching, and sporting and recreational activity, and having made some enduring friendships, he left the Crescent and moved to Milltown Park for his final period of training before ordination.

Theology and Tertianship
The years of disciplined study from 1943 to his ordination in 1945 were years of much effort and some strain, compounded by his being appointed beadle of his year. The longed-for day of ordination at last arrived, and he was fortunate to have present both his parents and many members of the extended family. The final year of theology was a busy time, for study was now interspersed with duties as a priest - hearing confessions and saying Mass at weekends in various parts of Dublin city and county. These were joyous and fulfilling occasions; for such he had been ordained and undergone a long preparation.

The following year he embarked on his tertianship at Rathfarnham. He had hoped earlier to be assigned to the foreign missions in Hong Kong or Zambia, but his bouts of illness ruled that out; and his second choice of teaching was excluded because of his leg and the difficulties he would experience in standing for protracted periods. Accordingly, at the end of tertianship, 1948, he found himself assigned to church work at Gardiner Street,

1 Dictionary of National Biography, vol. LV
2 Archbishop Carpenter-Sweetman, 23 Feb. 1774, Reportorium Novum, vol. 1, no.2, 1956, p. 400
3 DNB. vol, LV
4 B. Ó Cathaoir. “Fr. Sweetman and Mount St. Benedict”, Irish Times, 16 Sept. 1981.
5 Roger Sweetman's memo to his daughter, Joan, undated but written in the 1940s.
6 AMDG - A Publication of the Irish Jesuits, 1991, p. 19.

Interfuse No 133 : Special Issue September 2007


Thomas J Morrissey

This is the second of a three-part “obituary” written by our Province Historian, Todd Morrissey. The first part appeared in the Summer, 2007, issue #132; the final part is ready for issue #134. Much of the information on Michael's family life has come from his own recollections and those of his sisters, Joan and Brigid; and on his later life, from his recollections and those of various Jesuits and friends. His recollections are contained in some ten tapes of recorded interviews, two with Gay Byrne and Mike Murphy for Radio Éireann during the 1980s, and the remainder by John Dardis and Jesuit colleagues of Michael at the start of the 1990s. There was also an interview by Máirín de Búrca in the Sunday Tribune in 1987. Michael's own published writings, though not extensive, are also very informative. Michael asked the author to write an account of his life, and much of the text was read to him for comment while he was still able to concentrate!

At the end of the tertianship, 1948, Michael found himself assigned to church work at Gardiner Street, Dublin, where, in addition to the normal rota of masses and confessions, he was placed in charge of the Sodality of the Blessed Virgin; and of the St. Francis Xavier Sodality for men. At that time, these were relatively large groupings which demanded considerable attention. He also embarked on retreat work.

First Years as Priest: Work and Illness
He had come to his assignment feeling tired, without having had any holiday. Before long the tiredness seemed to increase, and he had to drive himself to keep going. After ten months it was found that he had tuberculosis. Much of the next year was spent between St.Vincent's hospital and Tullabeg. In the last, he lived apart in a separate wing.

There, however, he was well enough to read through the forty volumes of Pastor's History of the Popes and a good part of the writings of John Henry Newman, and he also found enjoyment, as well as food for thought, in the novels of Sigrid Unsted. The radio and records of classical music, especially the music of Schubert, to which he had been introduced by his mother, also helped to fill the hours during his illnesses. In the decade following his ordination there were, indeed, three bouts of tuberculosis, interspersed with stretches of active work.

Eventually, he underwent surgery at St. Mary's sanitorium, Phoenix Park, Dublin, and thereafter had no further problems with the disease. The illnesses, however, even with their periods of loneliness and dejection, proved a deepening and widening experience, not only in terms of reading, musical enjoyment, and reflection, but also in terms of sel£-reliance, and in leading him into a form of quiet, non-emotional prayer which gave inner strength and peace - “a silent, blank presence of God”.

On his recuperation from the first bout of tuberculosis, he was appointed to Rathfarnham as spiritual director to the Juniors - the Jesuit scholastics attending the university, and as assistant to the director of the Rathfarnham Retreat House. This last involved him mainly at weekends. As spiritual director, he brought to the position an openness and empathy which was of great assistance to the Juniors. His position also required him to give domestic exhortations to the combined community of priests, brothers, and scholastics. As he was the youngest priest in the permanent community, the task of preaching to the assembled group was a daunting one, especially as he brought a fresh and individual point of view to many of the subjects treated. He had read a number of works critical of the Society, such as those of the ex-Jesuit Boyd Barret, which were not readily available in the province, and was prepared to acknowledge the validity of some of the criticisms. He took great care in preparing his talks both as to content and style, and his younger listeners long remembered the freedom and originality which he brought to well-worn topics such as religious vows and “particular friendships”, as well as to a range of less obvious themes. Some of the older listeners, however, were less well disposed. Subsequently, when he sought to have the lectures published, the province censor of the time deemed them too criticial of traditional views. He was never accused, nevertheless, of being sensational in his approach, or unorthodox in his views. His sincerity and genuineness was evident; and, in time, many of his views and criticisms became accepted.

At weekends, as indicated, he was occupied with retreats, which were mainly to working men. They arrived on a Friday evening and continued in silence till Monday morning. There were sometimes up to 80 men, some of whom came fortified by alcohol, to face the ordeal. It was an intensive weekend of lectures, prayer, Masses, confessions and counselling, but Michael found it stimulating to be of help to so many different men from different occupations and backgrounds. Forty years later, men of the Lay Retreat Association still recalled his talks and assistance.

During his decade in Rathfarnham he found that for many hours in the week he had time on his hands. Wondering how he might best use this time, he consulted a member of the community, the elderly Fr. Richard Devane. The latter was a man of strong, independent personality, with a social conscience. Among the causes he championed was that of unmarried mothers. He sought financial assistance for them, and was known to stand outside Dail Eireann making their case to the deputies. He was termed, as a result, “the Father of the Unmarried Mothers”. He had also launched a sucessful campaign against the popular British press, which he accused of undermining moral values in Ireland; and at the close of the 1940s he wrote an attack on capitalism and laissez faire philosophy in a well-reviewed book entitled, The Failure of Individualism. Devane's recommendation changed Michael's life. He urged him to attend the Children's Courts and see the social and personal needs reflected there.

A Radical Apostolic Challenge to Social Commitment
The judge of the Children's Courts at that time was Henry McCarthy. Michael approached him and he agreed to his sitting in on the cases. “Sometimes I would go down every day of the week”, Michael recalled. “It opened to me the whole stream of deprivation in the city, and when I visited some of the children I met in the courts. I saw for myself the effects of poverty and bad housing”. His attendance at the courts also led him to Marlborough House, Glasnevin, the then rather chaotic detention centre for young boys in Dublin. Before visiting there, he took care to inform the local parish priest, Fr. Gleeson, who, fortunately, had previously been stationed in Glendalough. He did so as a partial insurance against the ever vigilant eye of the omniscient Archbishop McQuade. At Marlborough House, “he first encountered members of the Dunne family”, who were associated with crime in the popular mind. “I first met Christy Dunne”, he informed Mairín de Búrca in 1987, “and he was very young and very friendly and his family circumstances were the usual horror story”. He was, in fact, sixteen years of age; and very big, a man among boys. He was the eldest of sixteen children. As a result of the friendship, Michael was later involved in baptising many of the Dunne children, and he attended a number of family gatherings. When Christy came to get married, Michael provided the wedding ring, his mother's ring which had been left to Sister Joan. Thereafter, he was a support to Christy's wife and family in times of strain. Much of Christy's life was spent in gaol. But Michael stood by him consistently, and in court and written reference praised his good points. Many of Christy's children turned to him as a trusted friend and with them, he averred, he used hold long and serious conversations on a range of topics. His gift for seeing the good in people, his treatment of them with both directness and respect, and his absolute fearlessness, won. their regard.

He was prepared to go far to help these friends. This was shown very strikingly in the case of Christy Dunne, when Michael was superior at the Jesuit retreat house, Manresa, 1960-61. One day, it seems, Christy turned up and stated that he was on the run and wished to stay at Manresa, “Very well, stay on for a week”, Michael declared. He stayed on week after week, much to the consternation of many of the Jesuit community. Michael, indeed, is said to have allowed him use the house van, the community's means of transport, which was crashed more than once. During his stay at the house, Christy wrote a book on his life, with Michael's assistance. They tried to have it published. Two firms expressed an interest, and then pulled back. Some of it was subsequently published in a book called Smack. Christy, however, was said to have refrained from any involvement in drug traffic out of regard for “Fr.Sweetman”. After a number of months, Christy decided that to be on the run was too unsettling. They went to visit Mr.Haughey, the Minister for Justice, it seems, who was kind to Christy and joked, allegedly, about six months in a retreat house being a form of sentence. The attorney-general, however, not surprisingly, is reputed to have taken a very serious stance with Michael: “You know you have committed a crime by harbouring a man who was wanted by the police”. To which the snap, inadequate reply was: “I probably have, but it's better to keep him out of trouble than to get him into it”.

Christy did well for a long time after that. He set up as a contractor until a slump came and forced him out. Then he went into the taxi business for a while, a friend of Michael from his days in Limerick providing the financial backing for the car. Eventually, Christy was back in prison; unjustly, in Michael's view. He continued to visit him while his health permitted.

Loyalty to friends and those dependent on him had long been a . feature of Michael's behaviour. Most of the young offenders he met were unstable and volatile. Many were emotionally scarred, isolated, without any family ties. They were almost fated to go from offence to offence. He developed a line of advice to mitigate their behaviour. He used to counsel these wayward young friends: “Don't rob. But if you do, don't rob handbags or steal from old people; rob big places, which are likely to be covered by insurance!”

As well as Marlborough House, he also visited and made friends at the Centres in Daingean and Letterfrack. He tried to develop such positive talents as the boys had. A few settled down in jobs and never lapsed into crime. To one young lad with considerable potential as an artist, he gave great encouragement: providing materials, sponsorship, and other opportunities. For others he found jobs, sometimes in Jesuit houses. But again and again he was let down. Sometimes he exploded in anger out of frustration, but then was usually quick to apologise. As a priestly apostolate, it was one of the most difficult and tantalizing imaginable. There was little visible effect from one's efforts. Yet, he believed it was a truly Christ-like type of work. In a radio interview, referring to teenage boys who had burned a girl with an aerosol can, he commented: “People who do that...are in desperate straits themselves. Christ talked of going after the one sheep that strays... He came to heal the sick...Who are sicker than such persons?" So, he stayed with this work, and with such clients. Discipline, reliablility was alien to them. In many, violence was endemic. He had no illusions about them. But he would never give up on a friend. "Never write people oft", was a phrase of his which stayed with his sister, Joan. And he could be humorous at times about his chosen work. When Dr. McGreil of Maynooth, in a sociological survey, suggested that the people likely to be most successful with the deprived and unstable were those who were themselves neurotic, Michael observed wryly: “There was no need for a survey for that. I could have told him that”.

It was a life of intense pressure. Although he usually had other duties in church or parish or retreat house, he tried to be always available to people in difficulty. Often he had little sleep. There seemed to be always someone looking for something. Whenever money was available - and he begged unashamedly from family and friends for his clients - he gave unstintingly, but the greatest gift was of himself and his time, and in this he left himself open also to the intrusive tyranny of the phone. His relief through it all was his love of music, occasional days out with relatives and friends, and visits to the cinema - which he enjoyed as an art form to the point of contributing to the Furrow as film critic.

Setbacks and Humiliation
The singleminded dedication to his young offenders was not always appreciated by his Jesuit colleagues.. This first appeared on his appointment to Miltown Park, 1959, as minister to the large community, and director of the retreat house. Before long, disquiet was expressed at the presence of his proteges on the house staff. He was changed after a year, but in an upward move. In 1960 he was appointed rector of Manresa Retreat House, Dollymount. There, as noted, he harboured Christy Dunne for six months and gave him the use of the community van, and had a number of other transient young men on the staff. Not surprisingly, members of the community feared for the reputation and security of the house, which at best was struggling to survive financially, and felt aggrieved that they had not been consulted. In the circumstances, anomalies in his behaviour were noted. Michael, on one occasion, walked into the vegetable garden and orchard, on which the house depended for part of its income, and saw some youths raiding the apple trees. He gave chase in indignation, and as the last boy clambered over the external wall he caught one of his legs only to get the other leg in the face, shattering his glasses. His indignation against such minor theft was viewed by some of his brethren in ironic contrast to his harbouring and defence of far more serious delinquents. His community were not in a position to realize that Michael was possibly responding to an ancestral drum, to the seriousness with which his father had regarded raids on the orchard! When the Jesuit provincial made his annual visitation to Manresa, members expressed their fears and grievances to him. He, presumably, passed them on to Michael with certain recommendations, but he does not appear to have given him any indication that he might be moved from office.

One member of the community recalls standing behind Michael at the community notice board on the feast of St. Ignatius Loyola, the date on which the provincial status, or appointments, was customarily posted, and perceiving the surprise with which Michael noted that he had been moved to another house, and his comment - “And it's not even a record!” Apparently, there was some other instance of a shorter reign as rector, or superior, in the province's history. The half-humorous, seemingly detached remark, covered a deep sense of hurt and humiliation. He later remarked how he had paced the nearby Bull Wall, a well known promontory in Dublin bay, trying to come to grips with the pain and sense of injustice at the way he had been treated.

He was moved back to Miltown Park, this time as spiritual father to the theology students and assistant-director of the retreat house. His arrival was welcomed by the theologians, most of whom had warm memories of him as spiritual director in Rathfarnham. There had been tension at Miltown, as the ordination of some men had been deferred, and Michael's advice and steadying influence was greatly appreciated. He remained in his new position from 1961 to 1965, and then was changed to church work in Gardiner Street. This marked the start of a long period characterized by dedicated service in the church, and by a further expansion in his social awareness and in his practical commitment to people neglected by society.

Interfuse No 134 : Christmas 2007


Thomas J Morrissey

This is the third and final part of an "obituary" written by our Province Historian. The first part appeared in the Summer, 2007, issue #132, the second in #133, and this is the final part. Much of the information on Michael's family life has come from his own recollections and those of his sisters, Joan and Brigid; and from his recollections and those of various Jesuits and friends. His recollections are contained in some ten tapes of recorded interviews, two with Gay Byrne and Mike Murphy for Radio Éireann during the 1980s, and the remainder by John Dardis and Jesuit colleagues of Michael at the start of the 1990s. There was also an interview by Máirín de Búrca in the Sunday Tribune in 1987. Michael's own published writings, though not extensive, are also very informative. Michael asked Todd to write an account of his life, and much of the text was read to him for comment while he was still able to concentrate!

Church Preacher and Confessor.
At Milltown, as previously at Rathfarnham, Michael gave exhortations to the community from time to time, and, as in the past, these were polished, well thought-out presentations which left an impression on his hearers. In Gardiner Street, however, the occasions for exhortations and sermons were much more frequent, and the audience much different. But, again, the impact was immediate. The beauty of language, joined to stark realism, held the attention of all, and nearly always there seemed to be an aside, or an incident recounted, which stayed with his listeners.
At Gardiner Street, however, his main work was centred on the confessional. Many people came to him, from all ranks of society, attracted by his humanity and patience, and the thoughtful and original quality of his advice. In the confusion and turmoil which followed the publication of Humanae Vitae, after a period when the idea of contraception seemed to have been accepted, he displayed an empathy for people's difficulties which, it is said, kept many practising their religion who would otherwise have abandoned it. To one Jesuit friend at that time he confided that he regarded his work as a confessor as his “most important apostolate”. Long after he left Gardiner Street, the confessional which he had occupied was still called “Fr.Sweetman's Box”.

Social Challenge: the Association of Priests
His experience with the Children's Courts and the houses of detention had brought him into close contact with the families of many of the boys and the squalor and poverty in which most of them lived. The need for more housing, and improved housing, was evident. The awareness of that need led him to participate in the picket organized by the Dublin Housing Action Committee in 1968. Prior to that, however, his sense that as a minister of Jesus Christ he should be closely identified with the poor, led him to join with a number of radically-minded priests, who termed themselves the Association of Irish Priests. It was a completely unofficial body, and some of the members subsequently left the priesthood.

After a number of meetings, it was decided that four of them would live formally with the poor. Michael was one of the four. The others were Fr. Ray Maher of the Holy Ghost congregation, Fr. O'Flanagan of Maynooth, and a Fr, Byrne. Michael, with his provincial's knowledge, and Ray Maher went to live in Benburb Street, one of Dublin's most deprived areas. They shared a flat, meant to be for a caretaker, and for much of the time Michael was there on his own, as Fr. Maher was a chaplain and was frequently away giving retreats. Michael stayed there at night, and went each day up the hill on his bicycle to work at Gardiner Street church. Soon, however, he could not say the early Masses. There were many late nights, and some sleepless ones, at the flat, “There were appalling conditions in Benburb Street”, he reminisced, “the worst conditions in the city”. The officials from the Housing Department had visited the scene, but nothing was done. “The people that were there had no washing facilities, practically, no cooking facilities, just a fire in the room. They had very little bedding”. His flat, having been the caretaker's, was, he remarked, “the only place where there was a bath, and I remember the delight of the kids coming in their droves to have a bath”. Despite the conditions, “there were very good people in the street”, he observed, and “extraordinarily clean”, though there were others not so good and some quite slovenly. “There was one woman; we used to take a cup of tea from her in a filthy old cup, but you would have to take it as an act of faith”.

Eventually, exasperation at the inactivity of the Corporation, and the contemporary international climate of restlessness and revolt, led the residents to stage a strike. “They put barricades across the streets," Michael recalled. "They said they wanted me on the committee because I lived in the area. That was a great compliment to me. We didn't do anything very drastic, but we did barricade the area and made it difficult for people to come in”.

He became active on the housing issue at this time on many fronts. The Dublin Housing Action Committee asked him to speak at a public protest meeting concerning the arrest of one of their members, Denis Dennehy. As he explained: “I had to make a quick decision and I agreed to speak. It has always been my instinct not to give into fear, and, although I felt a fool getting up to speak, that was good for me”. He spoke with vehemence, asking, in words that were widely quoted: “How the hell can a family begin without a home?”

By this, the newspapers and television were interested in him and in the housing situation. On January 29, 1968, the Newsbeat television programme featured “Dublin Housing”, and a year later, on February 4, 1969, the Seven Days programme focused on “Housing Problems in Dublin”. This last centred on the story of Denis Dennehy, who was evicted, with his wife and family, from 20 Mountjoy Square where they squatted. A protest meeting at the General Post Office, Dublin, addressed by Michael, was filmed, as well as a sit-down on O'Connell Bridge and scuffles with the Gardai. Michael recalled going to Limerick, and while there his "face appeared on T.V. in the course of the O'Connell Street riot". He spoke on a number of occasions from the back of lorries.

Many fellow Jesuits were puzzled at his association with political extremists; and he felt a bit guilty at times, as he returned to Gardiner Street, lest he offend older men whom he admired. But he did not experience any criticism. People recognised his genuineness and basic orthodoxy, and he had a self-deprecatory sense of humour which dissolved any notion of fanaticism and distanced him from any image of taking himself too seriously or being judgmental of others. Indeed, he had an appreciation of the pluralism of the Society which not only kept him from identifying himself with attacks on its fee-paying schools but enabled him to serve happily during the 1970's on the Board of Governors of his old school, Clongowes Wood College,

He figured on television again, and in the newspapers, when he participated with students in a squatting campaign against inadequate housing, and he made the headlines with the stark reminder that - “People were entitled to take the necessities of life, if they could not be provided any other way, and that it was perfectly right to do something illegal as long as it was not immoral”. The campaign evoked from the Fianna Fáil Minister for Local Government, Kevin Boland, who was the focal point of the protests, his celebrated attack on “gullible priests and so-called clerics” aimed at the Association of Irish Priests, and in particular, Michael Sweetman, whose family name was associated with the main opposition party, Fine Gael. Michael was amused at the notion that someone who had spent 16 years in preparation for ordination could be described as a “so-called cleric”, Some of his fellow Jesuits, however, were embarrassed rather than amused by the squatting episode.

Invitations to speak now poured in. Some of them were not “his style” in terms of location or theme, but, as he commented late in life, they “gave me the opportunity to speak on all sorts of platforms, favourable and unfavourable, and I always said what I had to say, and was a priest. Those were great years”. In those “great years”, it has to be remembered, he was in his late fifties, and all was scrutinized by the ever-vigilant archbishop. “I knew”, he acknowledged, “that I had to be careful not to make any errors of doctrine or John Charles McQuaid would have stepped in”. But His Grace was himself a man with a strong social conscience, “Once or twice”, Michael continued, “he asked who had given me permission, and had I the right permission, but he didn't pursue me. He was friendly to me, in a way. I don't know why. I heard that he sent warnings to me through the be careful of such and such a person”.

Concern for the views of the archbishop did not deter him, nevertheless, from signing a public letter with the other fifteen members of the Association of Irish Priests on a matter on which he held firm views, namely, the issue of contraception. Without openly disagreeing with the Pope's stand, they wished to assert that the issue was far from being as clear-cut as those opposing contraception for Catholics made out.

Invitations to Write
As a result of his public prominence in these years, he received requests to write as well as to speak. Some of these provided an opportunity to voice his own independent philosophy, and to demonstrate his receptivity to change, and his distinctive form of lateral thinking.

His most powerful and enduring writing, however, was in the form of a pamphlet, which appeared as part of a “Christianity in Action” series produced by Veritas in 1972. It proved, and remains, a powerful clarion call to the public at large to recognize the individual and social damage that was being done by the shortage of housing, by the inhuman conditions in which families had to live, and by the greater priority given to property, money, and profit, than to people; and recognizing this, to push for an enlightened effort to alleviate the situation. There was not just a . social imperative for action, there was also a Christian imperative. “The Christian intervention in history was essentially to convert man, to change his heart, to make him turn around and face his fellow-men with love instead of hate, fear, and greed”.

Service of Others and Religion : from Benburb Street to Summerhill
As a result of the protests and confrontations, the flats at Benburb Street were finally closed. Michael moved to Summerhill, where he resided for six years, while still working at Gardiner Street Church. Once again, he acted as a mixture of friend and unpaid social worker, always seeking to be available for anyone who needed him. Only now he was no longer largely on his own; his pioneering social work had struck a chord in the Irish Jesuit province, and he had a number of young Jesuits residing with him at Summerhill and working there. These included Peter McVerry, later celebrated for his work for homeless boys, who ran a large workshop for the children of the area, where they did leather work which he marketed; Frank Brady, subsequently prominent in work for drug addicts and in Ballymun parish; John Callanan, a future author, school and university chaplain; and John Sweeney, who, as part of his religious training, was working in a factory in Ballyfermot and was later to be prominent in Catholic social service in Dublin. Some novices also came to stay with them to experience the reality of living amongst Dublin's poor.

The reality was stark, and at times fearsome. There were frequent interruptions and alarms by night. Sometimes callers sought a place to sleep, and for them floor space and mattresses were usually provided; others, whom Michael had befriended, called at 3 or 4 in the morning just wanting to talk and be listened to. Almost continuous disturbance, moreover, came from a very turbulent couple downstairs. It was, as he observed in his later years, “an extraordinary place” - “a great place to be”. It fulfilled his great desire to live with the poor; it brought him out, as he saw it, from living in a fortress removed from people, and it helped him “an awful lot and helped them a bit”. The fact that he was now one of a team was also of great help to him, while some of his companions have remarked on how much his presence meant to them. One man recalled the comfort he experienced when he came home at night after a day coping with problems to find Michael ready to listen and encourage; and if he had made a bad mistake, Michael always seemed disposed to cushion it with a humorous account of an even worse mistake he had once made himself.

From Summerhill to Ballymun
Then, Summerhill, too, was demolished. The Jesuit group discussed a length where to go in order to continue to identify their lives with the poor. They sought the advice of Fr. Peter Lemass, the local parish priest and an outstanding member of the diocesan clergy working among the poor. He recommended that they go to Ballymun. So at the close of 1980, Michael found himself living in Flat 21, McDonagh Towers, Ballymun, Dublin 12, and holding the position of superior to three young Jesuits: John Callanan, Frank Sammon, and John Sweeney. The first night he was on his own, and the flat was broken into and robbed, but not much was taken as there was not much to take!

From Ballymun he walked each day the long distance to Gardiner Street. He could not stand for long periods, but he could walk forever. As he did so, he prepared his sermons, reflected on people's problems, and meditated. He had developed over the years the frame of mind, inculcated by the founder of his order, namely that of finding God in all things, situations, and people. This is an appropriate point, accordingly, at which to introduce some features of Michael's spirituality. Like many Jesuits, he provided few direct clues to his own inner life. Fortunately, however, he provided a number of indirect ones, and these reflect an almost poetic awareness of God in the world of sense and nature, in sound and sight, and always there is an element of humour, and his own very personal way of reflecting on experience. In this respect some of his brief contributions on Radio Éireann in 1985 in the series “Just a Thought”, are illuminating.

A World Lit by the Spirit
Significantly, he devoted five talks to the subject of trees, “the great sign of life on earth”. They “breathe into the atmosphere”, he remarked in his first talk. “They take in what we call polluted air - carbon monoxide - and exhale oxygen. This is their ubiquitous, quasi-divine activity in the world. We literally cannot live without them”. And after an imaginative consideration of their growth and activity, he concluded: “In the meantime we must be satisfied to be aware of their silent breathing, nourishing in, us the mysterious gift of life”.

The second talk focused on the oak tree and its associations for him. He liked to associate it, in its power and serenity, with the music of Beethoven: “I remember when I was ill for long periods in early manhood, and had to spend endless hours lying in bed, how I used to grasp the end of the flex used as an aerial for the old radio that I had, to increase the volume. I had the sense of Beethoven's great rhythms and dramatic climaxes passing through me into sound; purifying me of despondency and fears of futility. They were like the strong arms of an oak, reassuring: life was worthwhile; something was valuable and permanent; love was possible - again”.

In his third presentation, he linked beech trees to the music of Chopin, and this, in turn, evoked memories of his youth. He had enjoyed the piano notes of Chopin's nocturnes played by a Rubenstein or Clayderman, “but never with such joy, as in memory I hear them rippling off the piano in the summer morning before breakfast, as my sister practised her pieces for the Feis Ceoil many moons ago. Then they floated out through the green-shuttered windows of Derrybawn in Glendalough and sped across the lawn to be received in the ample, yielding, mothering arms of the beech trees; known among foresters as the 'nurse of the wood”. In a subsequent talk “the great forest trees - the firs, pines and spruces” moved him to deplore their massive destruction to produce more and more newsprint. And he reflected how on calm days these great trees whisper and sigh on the gentle breeze, like the still small voice that heralded the approach of God to Elijah who could not discern him “in the earthquake, or the great wind, or the forest fire”.. And, finally, he returned to trees in a more general way, remarking: “A few times in our lives, I suppose, we all come to what you might call the verge of reality, nearly in touch with the heart of things, awe-struck with awareness of the Great Presence. For me this has always happened among trees”.

When, however, it came to selecting for publication from the contributions of the many speakers in the “Just a Thought” series, the one of Michael Sweetman's that was chosen by the editors was of a less imaginative, more humorous nature. It was entitled “The Only Prize-Winner in the Community”, and was structured on the brilliant, witty, and ungainly Fr. Arthur Little, philosopher, poet, and musician. Something of a hero to Michael, he remarked of him: “Life seemed a constant surprise to him and he liked to surprise others...He would offend clerical decorum by putting as frontispiece to the school magazine the prize-winning bull from the college farm - displaying all his considerable attributes - and underneath, the legend ‘The Only Prize-Winner in the Community’”. Michael concluded: “He died of lung cancer in his middle years. I visited him near the end and asked him did he get any pleasure still from music. ‘Ah, no Michael’, he said, ‘all that is gone now - there's only one thing left’, I thank him for his long bony finger and glinting eye, pointing towards the one thing necessary”.

In addition to these indirect insights into his spiritual world, Michael, fortunately, provided a more revealing picture in a brief article in the Jesuit magazine, AMDG, in 1991; written again with his characteristic feeling for imaginative, disciplined language.

Following the Christ of the Spiritual Exercises
Musing on what the Jesuit provincial had said to him on his 75th birthday - “You are no saint, but you are a good Jesuit” - Michael conveyed something of his deep faith and of the inner significance for him of being a Jesuit. “For the last twelve years I have done an annual eight day retreat, usually in Rocky Valley. We have a small cottage there, under the Sugar Loaf Mountain. In this lovely situation in Co. Wicklow, my native county, I can easily get in touch with God, alone. There, looking after my own meals, at my own time, walking about the foothills, working in the garden, basking in the sun if it is summer-time, getting a fire going if it is autumn, the sense of God's presence becomes second nature to me. There, the turmoil, the frustrations, joys and excitements of my life settle down and become the subject of reflection, the material for meditation, and fall into shape”.

“I will further consider the divine plan whereby this same Lord wants to give me all that is in His power to give”. “This phrase from Ignatius's Spiritual Exercises is really overwhelming, once you get beyond the formal language! God gives me everything, so that I can only feel grateful to him 'always and everywhere as the prefaces of the Mass so constantly tell us. Earlier in the retreat I would have tried to commit myself again to the following of Christ. This comes down, ultimately, to loving other people as he has loved us, not so much everyone, which is easy enough, but anyone, which can really push you to the pin of your collar! But all seems possible in Rocky Valley”!

“In recent years the great experience has been of camping on the Continent with some of my Jesuit friends. These were the times that vital decisions ripened: to go to the help of the homeless or delinquent; to try to find Christ where He said He was to be found, in the poorest and most difficult, the least of the brethren.... I have come to the conclusion: if you are playing any kind of part, putting on any kind of an act, you are not being true to yourself, which at its best is Christ in you. And so a frequent prayer now is, ‘May what is false within me before Your truth give way’. “When I am blank and dull, and even cantankerous and off putting, I try to remember to rejoice in the people I serve. This comes easily enough as I give, by my own word, the Body of Christ to them and feel the Word is made flesh in them”.

“Cardinal Martini touched a chord in me once by his description of desolation: ‘fear of facing certain situations, certain kinds of painful and prolonged fatigue, certain forms of ill humour, a certain inability to pray, in short not knowing how to be happy...’ This becomes all important as one begins to fade gently into the evening of life and then into the dark. I do not want to leave my good friends with a bad taste in their mouths”.

Struggling with Impatience and Desolation
“When I am blank and dull, and even cantankerous and off putting...” Michael, for all his great strengths, could be very difficult. A friend who experienced this on a few occasions, as when for example a change was made suddenly in a time-table, observed that he just stubbornly refused to cooperate, then later apologised. He once remarked to the same friend: “I can be very unreasonable. When I am, people should ignore me”. But it was not easy to ignore someone with Michael's physical size and strength of personality. And always, as noted earlier in relation to This time as a teacher, there was a sense of a volcano being restrained beneath a calm exterior. He remarked, indeed, that the patience he exhibited in the confessional and in frequent consultations was often exercised with great difficulty.

The latent impatience was to make life difficult for others as well as himself during his illnesses in his later years, though the impatience was mainly directed at his own failing mobility and memory. The “desolation” to which he had referred had become a squatter in his house; and he seemed to feel obliged, in the name of honesty and being true to oneself, to vigorously express his low spirits to others. One visiting Jesuit who solicitously enquired how he was, was taken aback by a vehement one word reply - “Lousy!”

The Years at Ballymun
Ballymun was Michael's final posting in terms of a mobile apostolate. Within a short time of his arrival, the Jesuits were offered a parish there. So there were now two residences, one in the towers and one at the presbytery, and by 1984 there were seven Jesuit priests and one brother living in Ballymun. The following year, Michael's church apostolate was moved from Gardiner Street to Shangan Road, Ballymun, and he took up residence in the presbytery. Before long he was running a cooperative in the parish. The 1980s, indeed, were a time of renewed public prominence for him. Apart from the "Just a Thought" presentations, there were two highly regarded in-depth radio interviews with Gay Byme and Mike Murphy respectively. And in -1987, at the age of seventy three, he received the rare honour of being appointed a consultor of the province - one of four men who meet regularly with the provincial to advise on policy, planning, the disposition of manpower, and so on.

In that year, too, there took place the long interview in the Sunday Tribune, conducted by his former colleague in the Housing Action days, Má

Tomkin, James, 1866-1950, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/418
  • Person
  • 09 November 1866-07 August 1950

Born: 09 November 1866, Munny, County Wexford
Entered: 07 September 1897, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Ordained: 29 July 1906, Milltown Park, Dublin
Final Vows: 02 February 1914, Mungret College SJ, Limerick
Died: 07 August 1950, Tullabeg, County Offaly

Younger brother of Nicholas A Tomkin - RIP 1923; Cousin of Nicholas J Tomkin - RIP 1942

by 1899 at Stonyhurst England (ANG) studying

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Younger brother of Nicholas A Tomkin - RIP 1923; Cousin of Nicholas J Tomkin - RIP 1942

◆ Irish Province News
Irish Province News 25th Year No 4 1950
Fr. James Tomkin (1866-1897-1950)

Father James Tomkin died in the forenoon of Monday, 7th August, 1950, after an illness of some months. He was in his eighty-fifth year and had been a Jesuit for fifty-three years. His vocation was a late one. Born at Munny, Carnew, Co. Wexford, he forsook farming at the age of twenty-six to study for the priesthood. Even his Jesuit training did not obliterate all traces of his former calling. To the end he retained the slow caution, the shrewdness mingled with simplicity, the occasional quaint turn of speech so characteristic of the Irish farmer. Secondary studies, first at Patrician College, Mountrath, and then at Mungret, cannot have been easy for him, Yet he pursued them with the same dogged perseverance and reasonable degree of success which were remarked in his later Jesuit philosophical and theological courses.
James Tomkin's novice-master from 1897 to 1899 was Father James Murphy, for whom ever afterwards he entertained an admiration amounting to hero-worship. Fr. Murphy, for his part, thought highly of the novice and nine years later, when dying as Rector of Tullabeg, is said to have (uncanonically) appointed Fr, Tomkin his successor. In Stonyhurst, whither F'r. Tomkin went for philosophy after his noticeship, he took part in cricket matches played by the Community against extern teams and earned something of a reputation as a bowler. A year's teaching in Clongowes followed Stonyhurst and then four years' theology in Milltown Park, where he was ordained in 1906. It was here that Fr. Tomkin's friendship and reverence for Fr. John Sullivan began. He shared the same room on Villa as Fr. Sullivan and admired his companion's kindness and unselfish ways. The great pre-occupation of Fr. Tomkin's last years was to further the Cause of Beatification of his old friend. He gave evidence at the Tribunal in Gardiner Street and was tireless in spreading devotion to Fr. Sullivan and collecting evidence of possible miracles. In 1907 Fr. Tomkin went to Tullabeg as minister and socius to the master of novices, His kindness soon endeared him to the novices of that generation, while his sagacity as a consultant about vocation became something of a legend. After his tertianship in Tullabeg (1912-1913) he went to Mungret and remained there until 1919, being Moderator of the Apostolic School for most of that time. There followed a further period in Tullabeg (1919-1924) as operarius in the People's Church. In this position he became the trusted friend and spiritual counsellor of scores of young men who were fighting in Ireland's War of Independence and later in the Civil War. He was often sent-for to secret rendezvous in order to give absolution and spiritual consolation to those about to go into battle. The theme of his exhortations on such occasions was twofold : to avoid intoxicating drink, and not to run risk of death while in the state of sin. The succour he gave them in those dark days made Fr. Tomkin's name revered by veterans of the Troubled Times. They came in large numbers to his funeral and had to be dissuaded from firing a volley over his grave. This period in Tullabeg was followed by one in Clongowes as procurator (1924-1928) and a period in Galway as Operarius. In Galway he had charge of the Pioneers. This was a ministry very much to his liking. He was a lifelong advocate of total abstinence, having received his first pledge from the hands of Fr. James Cullen when the founder of the Pioneer's was still a secular priest. In addition to directing the Galway centre, Fr. Tomkin had printed a small pamphlet written by himself and intended to set forth unequivocally the obligations of Pioneers.
In 1937 Fr. Tomkin returned to Tullabeg, where he was destined to spend the remainder of his life. Never a hustler, he yet had a fund of quiet, tenacious energy, and a skill at enlisting the co-operation of suitable adjutants in his various enterprises. These qualities helped him in re-organising and re-vivifying the Men's Sodality at Tullabeg in accordance with Fr, General's and Fr, Provincial's wishes and instructions concerning sodalities. In many ways he was an ideal pastor for the rural congregation which frequents the People's Church. He understood country life and the country people. During his Sunday sermons, as he leaned back against the altar, joined his hands and fixed a steady eye on the congregation, there was profound silence and close attention. He seemed to have more fluency and coherence in his sermons than in his ordinary conversation and his occasional references to current political happenings were much appreciated. At this time he was greatly sought after as a conductor of nuns retreats and as their extraordinary confessor. I think it was his kindness and unhurried patience in the confessional which made him so successful in this ministry. A few years before his death he gave up all active apostolate and seemed to turn more and more to prayer and contemplation. He was a great admirer of St. John of the Cross, whose works he read slowly and meditatively and often quoted. Those who knew him at this time retain as their most abiding impression of him his immense kindness and deep humility. I have never known him say a harsh word to or about anyone. At table his attention to his neighbour's wants could become at times embarrassing. In recreation he came in for more than his share of banter and “leg-pulling”, but never did he display the slightest anger or ill-feeling. He would ward off the shafts with a chuckle or a hearty laugh, or take evasive action with those who sought to trap him into awkward admissions. He had an entertaining way of perpetrating malapropisms of a variety all his own, as when he seriously referred to the doings of disembowelled spirits or observed that there was a peculiar twang on the soup. Fr Tomkin's foibles (for, like all of us, he had his share) were of that happy kind which gave no reasonable cause for annoyance and much for entertainment. His care of his health was exquisite, showing itself in the multitude of ingenious devices and practices with which he strove to ward off the ills which threaten our mortal frame. He was a firm believer in ghosts and was quick to discern diabolical intervention in even the most ordinary happenings. But such little peculiarities are completely overshadowed by his sterling religious virtues, his vivid faith, his edifying observance of religious discipline, his amiable charity and meticulous poverty, above all by his prayer, which towards the close of his life appeared to be almost continuous. He made no secret of the fact that God had specially favoured him, though, like many another adept in the life of prayer, he could give no very coherent account of the divine visitation. Tullabeg will miss his tall, familiar figure, pacing up and down the Spiritual Meadow, well wrapped against the treacherous blasts, and absorbed not, I believe, in idle dreams or memories, but in communing with God and His Saints.

Tomkin, Nicholas A, 1863-1923, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/2187
  • Person
  • 21 April 1863-10 April 1923

Born: 21 April 1863, Munny, County Wexford
Entered: 29 August 1882, Milltown Park, Dublin
Ordained: 1894
Final vows: 15 August 1900
Died 10 April 1923, St Vincent’s Hospital Dublin

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

Older brother of James Tomkin - RIP 1950; Cousin of Nicholas J Tomkin - RIP 1942

by 1890 at St Joseph's Seminary, Mangalore, Karnataka, India (VEM)
by 1899 at Leuven Belgium (BELG) making Tertianship

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
Older brother of James Tomkin - RIP 1950; Cousin of Nicholas J Tomkin - RIP 1942

After his Novitiate he studied Philosophy an Milltown.
1885 He was sent as Prefect to Clongowes for Regency. He returned to Milltown for a year and then back to Clongowes.
1889 He was sent to teach at the Jesuit College in Mangalore, India (VEM). he spent seven years there until severe illness forced him to come home to Milltown for Theology.
1896 He was sent to Clongowes and the following years he was at Galway as Minister and spent some years there.
1899 He was sent to Drongen for Tertianship at the end of which he was back in Galway as Minister, and also as a Teacher and an excellent Operarius. He distinguished himself as a Preacher, always making great preparations for his sermons.
1909 He became an Assistant Editor of the Irish Messenger, and continued in this for many years.
He died at St Vincent’s Hospital Dublin10/04/1923

Toole, Laurence, 1794-1864, Jesuit brother

  • IE IJA J/2189
  • Person
  • 10 August 1794-25 May 1864

Born: 10 August 1794, County Wexford
Entered: 12 November 1825, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly
Final vows: 08 September 1837
Died: 25 May 1864, St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
His parents were good Catholics, and made many sacrifices for their faith in troubled times. He was very talented, and had he had better opportunities, he might have become a distinguished man of his day. It was said the he was brought up innocently and “free of the contagion of the world”. He was keen to become a religious, but his aged parents needed his help, and so he became a carpenter in order to support them. When they died, he sought admission as a postulant. He then Ent 12 November 1825 at Tullabeg.

He lived 40 years as a Jesuit, and always appeared the same no matter where he was asked to serve. Modesty, humility and fraternal charity were his favourite virtues. In advance aged he was released from responsibility, but continued to work. He had spent some few years at Clongowes, and a short time at the Dublin Residence. Most of his religious life was spent in Tullabeg, and this is where he died 25 May 1864. He is buried in the old Rahan Cemetery beside Brother Egan.

Note from John Nelson Entry :
He took his Final Vows 02 February 1838 along with eleven others, being the first to whom Final Vows were given since the Restoration in Ireland. The others were : Philip Reilly of “Palermo fame”; Nowlan, Cleary, Mulligan, Michael Gallagher, Pexton Sr, Toole, Egan, Ginivan, Patrick Doyle and Plunkett.

Troddyn, Peter M, 1916-1982, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/421
  • Person
  • 23 May 1916-27 November 1982

Born: 23 May 1916, Rathgar, Dublin
Entered: 30 September 1933, St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
Ordained: 19 October 1947, Clonliffe College, Dublin
Final Vows: 15 August 1951, St Francis Xavier, Gardiner Street, Dublin
Died: 27 November 1982, University Hall, Hatch Street Lower, Dublin

Older Brother of Billy Trodden - RIP 1984

by 1939 at St Aloysius Jersey Channel Islands (FRA) studying

◆ Irish Province News

Irish Province News 58th Year No 2 1983


Fr Peter M Troddyn (1916-1933-1982)

Peter was born in Dublin on 23rd May. 1916. He was the eldest of six children, five boys and one girl. His father, a civil servant, was a native of Maghera in Derry; his mother, née Walsh, was from near Ballina in Mayo. All Peter's uncles, his mother's brothers, were boys at Clongowes in the early years of this century. His initial schooling was under the direction of a Miss Haynes, a devout Church of Ireland teacher, and her two Catholic assistants. This little school was about one hundred yards from Peter's home in Rathgar. There he met, for the first time, one who was to be a fellow-Jesuit and life long friend, the late Fr Dick Ingram.
For a few years after leaving Miss Haynes's Academy Peter continued his education under the Irish Christian Brothers in their schools in Synge street, then a penny tram-ride from his home. In the autumn of 1929 his parents made a decision which was to affect his whole life. Peter and his two brothers, Billy and Gerald, entered Belvedere College.
Athair Diarmuid Ó Laoghaire writes of Peter as a boy at Belvedere:
“While he did not play games, he was a faithful member of the Cycling Club and an enthusiastic, talented photographer. He was active, too, in the Debating Society and in An Cumann Gaelach, of which he was a founding member. One memory of him is abiding: from his arrival in the school, he was an inveterate “asker of questions”. In this the child was father of the man; to the end Peter's keen intellectual curiosity was a noted characteristic: Over the years I myself have frequently witnessed his struggles with abstruse mathematical, Theological and even historical problems. He was all his life a seeker and searcher for truth.
In February 1933, Peter's father died. This proved to be a turning point in Peter's life. It was decided that he should sit for the Civil Service Examinations for Junior Executive Grade and at the same time complete his Leaving Certificate Course at Belvedere. Shortly after his , 17th birthday he passed both examinations with honours. However, during the Summer months which followed, he made up his mind to become a Jesuit and he entered our Novitiate at St Mary's, Emo, on 30th September 1933. He was one of seven Belvederians to do so in that year.
His noviceship came to an end on 1st October, 1935, when he made his first vows. He spent the three following years in the Juniorate at Rathfarnham Castle. He graduated from the National University, receiving his BA (Hons) in Maths 2014 Maths Physics. He was one of three to do so in 1938; the late Fr Dick Ingram and Fr Ted Collins of Hong Kong made up that distinguished trio.
While in the judgement of his contemporaries he would have benefited from further studies at the University, it was decided that he should start his philosophy course at the French House in Jersey. Here he spent one golden year, a year he often spoke of with affectionate appreciation. Everything appealed to him, the stimulating lectures of the Professors, the congenial company of the French scholastics, the climate, the diet and the all-round liberating régime. Here too, was kindled his love for France and things French. In later years he would return to France to carry on, for over twenty years, a hidden apostolate in a Paris suburb.
The outbreak of the Second World War on 3rd September, 1939, brought about the recall of Peter and his four fellow Irish Scholastics to Tullabeg. Philosophy as an academic discipline appealed to him and he excelled in it. And, as in the he played a full and useful part in all the activities of his fellow philosophers', games apart.
For two years, from 1941, he taught mathematics in Belvedere, edited the Belvederian and presided over the Senior Debating Society. He also obtained his Higher Diploma in Education. Then he spent one year at the Crescent teaching and prefecting and refereeing rugby matches for the very young boys! In addition, he was in charge of the new school hall, where his practical knowledge of electricity was a decided asset! In both Colleges he won the hearts of many a youth by his patience and his kindly interest in their boyish affairs.
He arrived in Milltown Park in Autumn of 1944 to commence his studies. Here his health began to deteriorate. He was rushed to hospital and underwent major surgery on 29th July, the eve of the Ordination Day 1947. He recovered slowly and was ordained privately at Clonliffe College by the late Archbishop John C. McQuaid on 19th October, 1947. He offered his first Mass in the Convent Chapel attached to Our Lady's Hospice, Harold's Cross.
But illness dogged him. He was unable to complete his Theology and retired to do light work in 35, Lower Leeson Street, and to Clongowes in the summer term of 1949. In the autumn of . that year he began his Tertianship. This final year of formation proved a trial for him, but he persevered until ill health forced him to retire once more, this time to Milltown Park where he took his final examinations successfully just before Christmas 1950.
Fr Peter arrived as a member of the Community attached to St Francis Xavier's church, Gardiner Street, in January 1951. On 15th August of that year Peter, he made his final profession. During the next eleven years Peter held posts of varying importance. He was for a time Assistant to the Province Treasurer, he preached frequently in the Church and during the Novena of Grace and always to appreciative audiences. Fr Daniel Shields takes up the story: “I was in the St Francis Xavier Community during the years when Fr Peter was in charge of the building of the present St Francis Xavier Hall. He was faced with many problems, not least, the financial problem, How was he to raise the large sums required to meet not only the building costs, but also the cost of installing modern theatre and stage equipment, seating, etc. Fr Peter with the expertise of a Rothschild banker came to the rescue. He devised a system of weekly “draws” which were so attractive and so widely supported, that the money so raised financed the entire undertaking. When the Hall was completed, Fr Peter recruited a group of voluntary helpers. These included skilled carpenters, painters, engineers, light and or sound experts and even a tailor! Fr Peter became the friend and Father of each. They came to him with all their problems, not least their religious problems. It is unbelievable the trouble he took in finding real solutions to a wide variety of such problems.
Fr Peter then turned is attention to providing accommodation for the members of the Pioneer Club, who had formerly been housed in the original Fr Cullen's Pioneer Hall in Sherrard street. He purchased a fine Georgian house on the East side of Mountjoy Square and had the entire building renovated, decorated and equipped to a high standard, The proceeds of his Weekly Draws' helped to finance this project also. The St Francis Xavier Hall and the Pioneer Club - Fr Cullen House - stand today }s monuments to Peter's financial genius, to his foresight and above all to his loyalty to his fellow co-operators and friends.
An tAthair Proinsias 0 Fionnagáin re- calls another activity of Peter's which, as has been mentioned, started in 1951: 'He undertook annually pastoral work at Gonesse, a parish north of Paris. There he won the trust and the approval of the Curé who invited him back year after year down to 1969. For two years he continued his summer pilgrimage, first at Milly-la-Forêt and then in Brittany, whither the Curé, for reasons of health, had retired. For the next three years, Fr Peter was too occupied with editorial problems to undertake any trips abroad. During his own time in France, Fr Frank met some of Peter's former fellow philosophers from his Jersey days. They all spoke of his gifts of mind and heart.
On the Status, 1962, Fr Peter found himself transferred to Clongowes as a teacher of Maths. He was then in his forty-seventh year, had been out of the classroom for seventeen years and was in very indifferent health. It proved to be a mistake. After two years it was my pleasure to welcome him as a member of the Jesuit team then manning the young College of Industrial Relations. He stayed with us until the Spring of 1966 when at the request of his old friend, Fr R Burke-Savage, he joined the Leeson Street Community as “Collaborator in Studies”. Incidentally, his religious Superior was none other than his erst- while companion at Miss Haynes's Academy forty years before - the late Fr Dick Ingram.
An tAthair Proinsias resumes: On his appointment in 1967 to the editorship of Studies - it might have been thought that he had neither sufficient experience nor. qualifications for that important position. His Provincial, Fr Brendan Barry, how ever, judged him to be eminently qualified and how splendidly justified was Fr Barry's judgement!
Peter proved to be an editor to the manor born. His was a fastidious sense of good English. The Autumn issue of Studies, 1968, left no doubt as to the accuracy of his judgement concerning the changes taking place in Ireland in the euphoria of the prosperous 'sixties. “Post-Primary education, now and in the future - A Symposium” - proved a brilliant success. Over 5,000 copies of this issue were sold. On this occasion Fr Peter showed himself to be a peritus among the periti.
For six more years, Studies under Peter's editorship maintained the highest standards of readable scholarship. In deed, the very excellence of succeeding issues concealed the nagging financial problems and worries and the wretched health that continued to affect the conscientious Editor. He continued the un equal struggle until the Spring of 1974, when he felt obliged to lay down his pen and vacate the Editor's chair.
His association with University Hall and with its students, which had begun in the Spring of 1966, now continued, Fr Jack Brennan writes: ‘Peter was happy in the Hall ... Surprisingly, perhaps, in such a private person, he enjoyed time spent with the students. He was extremely patient in listening to them. His advice was sure and often took pragmatic turns that sprang from his wide knowledge of fields in which they were concerned. His tolerance was of a high degree, and, occasionally he would inter cede in a caring way on behalf of a student who was in 'hot water'. For him the faults or failings of another were never the whole story. His sense of loyalty - often involving a considerable amount of work on his part - towards the students as well as towards his family being able to share some of his good and friends was striking. Confidentiality was also a key quality of his.
One very close to him all his life writes: “A thing that always struck me about Peter was his kindness to the domestic staff in the Houses in which he lived. I used to notice this whenever I came to visit him. They would speak of him very appreciatively and tell me about the many good turns he did them”. Fr Shields concurs with this: “The staff of St Francis Xavier's Hall looked on Peter as their friend. And when he left the Hall, they were lonely and upset, Meeting me, they would say, ‘Father, when is Fr Troddyn coming back?’" Such touching appreciation needs no comment. Nor did this characteristic escape Fr Jack Brennan's observation; “The domestic staff at the Hall held Fr Peter in high regard; they were glad to be able to attend to his simple wants with real affection”
There is one virtue which this very private person could not conceal from those few who knew him intimately. Peter was a genuinely humble man - a man who, with St Paul “in labours, in knowledge, in long suffering, in sweetness, in the Holy Spirit, in charity unfeigned, in the word of truth", showed himself a true Minister of God'. He had to carry the cross of poor health for most of his working life with the humiliations, misunderstandings and frustrations attached to it. His judgements and opinions did not always receive the consideration they deserved. Apart from St Francis Xavier's Hall and Fr Cullen House, his plans and dreams were seldom actualised. These apparent “failures' provided him with opportunities for the practice of humility and consequent self effacement. He was always more ready to blame himself than to question the wisdom of others.
Some final thoughts occur to me. Personal friendships meant a great deal to him, not for what he himself could get abut for the joy he felt at being able to share some of his good his advice or practical knowledge with someone, however lowly, in need. This must have helped him to a more correct appreciation of God's gifts to him self and of his duty as a Christian to help other members of the Body of Christ.
From his many serious illnesses, Peter grew in self knowledge and also in awareness of the care which the sick and convalescent needed. He demanded high standards of care for anyone ill and showed his concern and displeasure if he thought that those who were sick were neglected in even the smallest way. His genuine concern was shown clearly in daily visits, in all weathers, for three and a-half years until her death, to an aged aunt in Our Lady's Hospice. The staff and other patients admired his faithful kindness and concern for her welfare.
If I or other contributors to this obituary have said very little about Peter the Jesuit, it is because we have no reason to stress what was obvious to us all. As has been well said: “Peter was a Jesuit in the authentic lgnatian mould”. Ever an avid reader, he kept in touch with “Jesuitica” and like so many of his generation found it difficult to accept some manifestations of the new “pluralism”.
May the good Lord, who is gentle and lowly in heart, welcome Peter into the new home prepared with exquisite care for all who love and serve his heavenly Father.
Edmond Kent SJ

Walsh, Nicholas, 1826-1912, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/446
  • Person
  • 22 June 1826-18 October 1912

Born: 22 June 1826, Enniscorthy, County Wexford
Entered: 21 February 1858, St Andrea, Rome, Italy (ROM)
Ordained: - pre Entry
Final vows: 02 February 1870
Died: 18 October 1912, St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

Father Provincial of the Irish Province of the Society of Jesus: 20 April 1870-17 March 1877

by 1859 at Roman College Italy (ROM) studying Theology
by 1870 at Rome Italy (ROM) making Tertianship

◆ HIB Menologies SJ :
He was already Ordained a Priest for the Ferns Diocese before Ent. It was said he would have become a Bishop there had he not joined the Society. He had studied under Cardinal Johannes Baptist Franzelin, the Austrian Jesuit Theologian, and whose life he wrote in later years.

He did his Regency at Tullabeg (1861-1863), Galway (1864-1865) Clongowes, being Minister there as well (1866-1869).
1869-1870 Tertianship in Rome
1870-1877 After Tertianship in Rome he was sent to HIB as Provincial.
1877-1883/4 He went to Gardiner St as Superior
1884-1889 Operarius at Gardiner St
1889-1895 He was appointed Rector of the newly opened Milltown Theologate.
He suffered from a lingering illness and died in Gardiner St 18 October 1912

Henry Lynch SJ writes of him :
“Nicholas Walsh did not get the Obituary notice his memory deserved. This was ‘our’ fault, of course. Had he died 10 or 15 years earlier, the papers would have been full of him, but he lived too long and was forgotten. In his day, however, he was really one of our great men in the public eye, though he was never popular with “Ours”, especially in the days of his authority. A certain natural pomposity and autocratic manner accounts for this, though he really was quite simple and good-natured at heart. But in his day he was in the very first rank of Preachers and the Bishops and Priests held him in great estimation. He Preached at the Consecration of Sligo Cathedral in 1874, and at the installation of Dr William Walshe as Archbishop of Dublin. His retreats and Lectures were very fine, impressive and solid, and were very much sought after and appreciated. His speech a the Maynooth Centenary (1896) was said t have been one of the best delivered on that historic occasion. He was a favourite Confessor with men, and even in his declining years heard many in the parlour.
He mellowed much in old age and “Ours” came to know and like him better and even poke fun at him which he took very well. He had many influential friends who helped him in his good works.
When Superior of Gardiner St, he put up those four magnificent pictures of Ignatius in the transept of the Church. When Rector at Milltown he built the fine Collegiate Church there. When he ceased to preach, like Matthew Russell, he took to writing books, and published four - “Life of Franzelin”; “Old and New”; “The Saved and the Lost” and “Woman”. In these four books he gathered and published all the matter of his many famous retreats, Sermons, Lectures, and domestic exhortations. The books had poor sales.
All through his life he enjoyed splendid health and rarely had a pain or ache, not even in his last days. He died of senile decay. During the last 10 years of his life he lived in complete retirement at Gardiner St, except for just one year at Clongowes as Spiritual Father. For the last three or four years he was confined to his room altogether and there were signs of dementia towards the end.
He was a man who always upheld a very high standard of piety and conduct to all, and was, himself, most devout. He died in the end room of Bannon’s corridor, and the Provincial William Delaney and Minister Joseph Wrafter were with him at the end.”

Note from John Bannon Entry :
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 lustre 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....

◆ James B Stephenson SJ Menologies 1973

Father Nicholas Walsh 1826-1912
Fr Nicholas Walsh was born in Wexford on June 22nd 1826. He joined the Society as a priest in 1858.

He studied under Cardinal Franzelin whose life he wrote in later years. From his tertianship in Rome he was sent back to Ireland as Provincial, a post he filled for seven years.

He was a magnificent preacher and lecturer, His speech at the Maynooth Centenary in 1896, was adjudged the best delivered on that occasion.

When Rector of Milltown Park in 1889, when that house was opened as a Theologate, he was responsible for the building of the fine collegiate chapel there.

In his retirement in Gardiner Street, he took to his pen and published four books : “The Life of Cardinal Franzelin”; “Old and New”; “The Saved and the Lost” and “Woman”.

He died of a lingering illness in Gardiner Street on October 18th 1912.

White, Robert, 1817-1895, Jesuit priest

  • Person
  • 07 January 1817-01 September 1895

J 443

Born 07 January 1817, Pouldarrig, Co Wexford
Entered 08 April 1857, Verona, Italy - Venetae Province (VEM) for Angliae Province (ANG)
Ordained - pre Entry
Professed 02 February 1868
Died 01 September 1895, St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Denbighshire, Wales - Angliae Province (ANG)

Whitty, Robert, 1817-1895, Jesuit priest

  • IE IJA J/443
  • Person
  • 07 January 1817-01 September 1895

Born: 07 January 1817, Pouldarrig, County Wexford
Entered: 08 April 1857, Verona, Italy (VEM for ANG)
Ordained - pre Entry
Final Vows: 02 February 1868
Died: 01 September 1895, St Beuno’s, St Asaph, Denbighshire, Wales - Angliae Province (ANG)

Fr General's English Assistant : 1886-1892
Tertian Instructor 1881-1886 (Manresa, Roehampton, London)