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Not "Just A Couple Of Mayo Men"

Bishop In times of Eireanne unfortunatly similar to that of today two men of Mayo would stand firm.

Patrick Morrisroe the son of Mary Brennan and John Morrisroe (the baker) was born in Charlestown, County Mayo 19th February 1867. His sponsors were Luke Brennan and Frances Kelly. He joined several siblings. As seemed to follow family suit, he was educated at the local N.S. Seminary, then on to Ballaghadereen and Maynooth College. Following his ordination at the Cathedral at Ballaghadereen he served in the diocese of Achonry. In 1896 Patrick returned to Maynooth to become Junior Dean in the College.

CathedralPatrick was consecrated a Bishop at the age of 44 in the Cathedral, Ballaghadereen along with his cousin Most Rev. Bishop Michael J. O'Doherty, later to become Bishop of Zamboagna, in the Philippines. Most Rev. Dr. Healy, Archbishop of Tuam was the concecrating prelate, and was assisted by Rev. Dr. Clancy, the Bishop of Elphin. The congregation which filled the Cathedral included Messrs. John Dillon M.P., J. McVeagh M.P., and John O'Dowd M.P. The sermon was preached by Rev. Dr. Beechler, Maynooth College.

A man of deep learning Patrick was an authority on theological and liturgical matters. His Lenten Pastoral of 1941, one of great controversy was censored by the government. There are two versions of the Pastoral, one before censorship and one after. In it he directs his final comments to a world in crisis. "As we pen these pages, beloved Brethren, we are face to face with a spectacle probably more appaling than any recorded in the annals of history. Long ago it was predicted that nation would rise agains nation and Kingdom against Kingdom."

At the age of 79 Patrick died at the Palace, Edmondstown House, Ballaghadereen. Priests and people from all parts of the Diocese of Achonry and from around the world attended the removal of the remains to St. Nathy's Cathedral. The Archbishop of Tuam, Most Rev. Dr. Walsh officiated at the house. The funeral procession was headed by the members of the Diocesan Chapter and a large number of surpliced clergy of the diocese who chanted the Miserere. Members of the St. Vincent de Paul and Gardai acted as pall-bearers and marshals, and gardai, under the direction of Supt. J. Lyons provided a guard of honour. Members off all the Catholic organizations marched in the procession. His crypt is located within the sanctuary.

 

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Dueling with General Pershing -  Bishop Michael J. O'Doherty

Dueling with General Pershing was just one of many notable actions of his Grace Archbishop Michael J. O'Doherty. Julia O'Kelly and Michael O'Doherty welcomed Michael into this world 30th July 1874 in Charlestown, County Mayo. Michael's brother Denis J. would later succeed him as rector of the College of Salamanca. His Grace's early years were spent between his birthplace and Kiltinagh. His early schooling, he received at St. Nathy's College, in Ballaghadereen. Finishing his course studies he proceeded to St. Patrick's College, Maynooth University for his philosophical and theological studies. He was ordained a priest 30 November 1897. He was then only 24 years old.

A brilliant scholor, his first appointment was to a professorship in his native diocesan college, where he taught for several years. It was largely through his efforts that St. Nathy's College was raised to a prominent place among the educational institutions of Ireland. In 2010 St. Nathy's College celebrated it's Centenial.

On 22nd June Michael was appointed by the Council of Irish Bishops, Rector of the Irish College in Salamanca, Spain founded in 1592, where he directed for seven years. He was successful in restoring the ancient glory of the college. For it's support Bishop O'Doherty recovered a number of legacies and endowments of which it had been deprived since the Napoleonic wars and subsequent upheavels in Spain. He became a close friend of King Alfonso of Spain, and was honored by letter with the order of knighthood of the Spanish household, a rare distinction.

At the age of thirty-seven he had established himself as an educator and administrator and became a notable figure in the Catholic hierarchy. When the diocese of Zamboagna was created in 1911, his Holiness, Pope Pius X appointed him the first bishop. After his concecration Michael traveled to Rome to meet with the Holy Father. He met also with Cardinal Merry del Val and Cardinal de Lai. He left Queenstown 22 February 1912 for America. Accompanied by his secretary Rev Stanislaus Hyghes, PhD. he toured the country from coast to coast visiting friends. On 6th March he stopped in Baltimore to visit Cardinal Gibbons whom he wanted to meet since he was a child. On July 26th 1912 he turned his sights east to a new endeavor in a new world.



Last updated 24 Augusty 2012 ©ProjectMorrisroe