A total of seven Spiritans of the Irish Province died in 2022. They were Jim Byrnes, Kevin Corrigan, Hugh Fagan, Patrick J. Kelly, Augustine Lindsay, Michael Reynolds and James Stapleton.
Jim Byrnes C.S.Sp. – Born in Co. Galway, Fr Jim grew up in Co. Limerick and attended Salesian College, Pallaskenry. Ordained in 1970, he was appointed to Sierra Leone where he served in a number of parishes including in the capital, Freetown. In Ireland, he did pastoral work in the Archdiocese of Dublin, was attached to Templeogue College for some two decades and was chaplain in Peamount Hospital (2003-2020). He died on 15th December, aged 80, and is buried in Pallaskenry.
Kevin Corrigan C.S.Sp. – One of four brothers from Tang, Co. Westmeath to enter the priesthood, Fr Kevin was ordained in 1960. He spent a little under two decades in Kenya, serving in formation and secondary education as well as in chaplaincy. In the USA for a similar period, he completed an MA in Pastoral Counselling, and did pastoral work and chaplaincy. Returning to Ireland in 2005, he was chaplain to Marian House Nursing Home in Kimmage until his retirement. He died on 7th April, aged 88.
Hugh Fagan C.S.Sp. – A Dubliner who grew up in Crumlin, Fr Hugh was ordained in 1961. Appointed to The Gambia, he did pastoral work and first evangelisation until 1974 in Banjul, the West African country’s capital city, and had similar roles in both Basse and Bakau in the 1980s. He did pastoral work in Australia for a short period. In Ireland he served as Director of Vocations and as a hospital chaplain, and he was much in demand as a retreat-giver at home and overseas. Aged 88, he died on 8th June.
Patrick J. Kelly C.S.Sp. – Fr Patrick was from Loughmacrory, Co. Tyrone and was ordained there in 1974 by Bishop Francis Lenny. He went on to study at the then Kimmage Development Studies Centre (now subsumed into Maynooth University). Appointed to Ethiopia, he spent well over 2 decades in the East African country working in development, initially in the highlands of Chencha, as well as in ecumenism. In Ireland he was involved in chaplaincy work. He died on 5th April, aged 73.
Augustine Lindsay C.S.Sp. – A Dubliner who attended Synge Street CBS, Fr Augustine was ordained in 1954. Appointed to Nigeria, he worked in education including in Orlu and Owerri. In 1968 he moved to the USA where he lived for the rest of his life, holding a number of third-level teaching roles – including as Associate Professor of Humanities in St John’s University, New York – and doing translation work and writing. At 97 and the oldest member of the Province, he died on 18th August.
Michael Reynolds C.S.Sp. – Born in Co. Tipperary, Fr Michael grew up in Kilkenny and attended the local CBS. Ordained in 1958, he was appointed to Nigeria. He taught at Holy Spirit College in Umuahia diocese until the time of the Biafran War. In the 1970s he taught in Kabwe Teacher Training College in Zambia. Returning to Ireland in 1978, he served in various ministries including hospital chaplaincy, and had a close association with overseas development work. He died on 11th February, aged 90.
James Stapleton C.S.Sp. – From Moyne, Co. Tipperary, Fr James attended Thurles CBS. Ordained in 1974, he served in Ghana and, in various roles, including as secretary to the Archbishop of Freetown & Bo, in Sierra Leone. He spent a number of years in New York including as a fundraiser for the mission in Sierra Leone. In Ireland he served in Promotions and, for more than a decade and a half, in hospital chaplaincy, the role in which he was understood to be happiest. He died on 23rd October, aged 75.+