The diocese of Achonry had its first presentation of the (St) John Paul 11 Awards this evening (November 21st) in St Nathy’s College, Ballaghderreen. Bishop Brendan Kelly presented the awards to nineteen students from throughout the diocese in the presence of their families, teachers and friends. Members of the Knights of St Columbanus were also in attendance. This first group, though small, is seen as a very important development in the diocese. Monica Morley spoke to the gathering and encouraged the young people to keep deeply involved in their church, making the point that Parish is the touchstone. Bishop Brendan thanked the young people and congratulated them on their achievements. Three of the recipients spoke of their journey through the awards process and it was evident the journey had been good for them. Activities included volunteering in St Vincent de Paul Shop, being part of the youth group on our Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes, helping a local priest edit and publish the parish bulletin, joining Folk Group, being Ministers of The Word and much more. All in all, impressive presentations by impressive young people. Well done to them all.
The students were from secondary schools in Charlestown, Tubbercurry, Ballymote, Ballaghaderren and Ballisodare. Fr Joe Gavigan, Chaplain to the Knights of St Columbanus, welcomed them all and wished them well.
Following a brave and faith-filled encounter with Motor Neurone Disease, Fr Andrew Finan died earlier this morning, February 2nd 2014, the Feast of The Lord’s Presentation in the Temple. May he rest in peace.
Ordained in 1980, Andrew spent practically all of his priestly life as a member of the teaching staff of St Nathy’s College.
We offer our deepest sympathy to his brother, family, teaching colleagues and many friends within and beyond our diocese.
With Simeon, central to this Feast Day, we pray:
“At last, all-powerful Master, you give leave to your servant to go in peace, according to your promise. For my eyes have seen your salvation which you have prepared for all nations, the light to enlighten the Gentiles and give glory to Israel, your people.”
Monday: Reposing Sharkey’s Funeral Home, Ballaghaderreen from 4pm. Prayers at 6pm with removal to the Cathedral of The Annunciation and St Nathy at 7.45pm for arrival at 8pm.
Tuesday: Funeral Mass at 1pm in Cathedral of The Annunciation and St Nathy, followed by burial at Corrownagh Church, Ballisodare, Co Sligo.
MESSAGES OF SYMPATHY
If you would like to include a message of sympathy or a memory of Fr Andrew, please use the form below (Messages received will be included on this page)
Sympathy to +Brendan Kelly & Collleagues on Andrew Finan’s Death. His final “Nunc Dimittis” was on Sunday as we celebrated the Feast of the Light of the Lord’s Presence for all people.
“AT LAST” Andrew, whose Patron’s name was the Apostle who led Peter to Jesus, can now know that making sense of life and suffering also means having a meaning for death. I visited him often when he was in hospital and in the Nursing Home. His faith accepted the illness, which was borne with a calm hope. Gethsemane and Calvary merged for him.
When I was in London as an Emigrant Chaplain, Andrew stayed with me. He was intensely investigative on so many areas of life and people, but never nosey!! Andrew’s own Faith was strong…I have no doubt he led many to the Lord with all his unique interests. Sorry that I cannot make it to the Funeral Mass.
Fr John Cullen
God rest Fr Andrew. Having worked with him in the diocese for nearly 27 years, I can say that his illness, tragic and uninvited, led him to his finest hour. His witness was was humbling, his faith certain and his priesthood lived at the Altar of suffering. May he rest in the peace he so truly deserves.
My deepest sympathy to Andrew’s family and brother-priests in Achonry. May his gentle soul rest in peace.
Having attended Saint Nathy’s in my secondary schooling I had the pleasure to have his educational influence in my life. I was deeply upset to hear of his passing as his sole influence in my life turned me from a Liverpool urbanite (my junior school years) to what kind of person I am today. He solely introduced me into the world of poetry, opened tangents of mindful thinking, philosophy, romantic Ireland of the past and I was uniquely honoured to receive the copy of The Universal Prayer from which Fr Andrew regularly recited extracts in our post class prayer. I would not be the man I am today, the regular poet, the browser of self help books, open mindedness had it not been for this wonderful man’s education. I would be honoured if you can email me back so I can send you the poem I wrote in his memory yesterday.
On life and learning (in memory of Fr.Andrew Finan)
Some people lay instruction to get all the gold and silver you can,
To spur us from youth to adulthood, from boyhood into man,
There are those whom were loving as a child,
But life turneth them into hatred with their spirit running wild,
There are men who make war with peace a bitter pill,
People who make false testament , promises but never will.
Personal gains of wealth, recognition is not for me,
Just to write my thoughts on paper and simply let me be,
The power of words unveiled to me by such a well read man,
Proved to me in adult life, it’s words that simply can,
Change a way of thinking , open the mind to spectrums of intuition
I thank the man who brought me into poetic fruition,
Let no stone be unturned in our learning life on earth,
Let each person know their individual and their own self worth,
Let us grow rich by the page that we turn not the power of our name,
Because underneath we are human, our composition all the same.
Betwixt the broadsheets, he would underline fact from fiction,
And turned my glance of past poets into an intriguing addiction,
He sought truth from literature with self-building interpretation,
But I moved on in life and never stopped to give him congratulation
I will gladly carry the teachings and share the richness I absorbed back then,
And thank you Father Andrew for all you gave the power of the pen.