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4 GLENSTAL NEWSLETTER Spring 2009

Colourful Continent frica was once commonly referred to as the Dark Continent - full of strange diseases, dark people, and an unexplored interior. The Africa that I know is no Dark Continent, but rather the Colourful Continent. It is colourful in every sense: full of rich and diverse colours, of vibrant and warm people and blessed with amazing natural beauty.

A

I cannot say that I have lived all over Africa, but I have moved country six times so far in my life, mostly within East Africa. I have lived in central Tanzania, Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia and northern Tanzania. My parents worked as development aid workers with Concern, Irish Aid, and the Medical Missionaries of Mary, and I have seen first hand the benefits of helping people to help themselves. Each and every country that I lived in was stunningly beautiful with countless wonderful people. My latest move was back here to Ireland, to Glenstal Abbey School where I completed my Leaving Certificate. Although I am Irish and love Ireland, I was only two months old when I left for drier pastures in central Tanzania. My first word was dudu, “insect” in Swahili and my first language was Luganda, which I learned once I moved to Uganda at the age of 18 months. Uganda is to my mind the Emerald Isle of Africa. The people there are as friendly and warm as Irish people, and the country itself has as many shades of green as Ireland. The country was in the middle of an Aids crisis while we lived there, but I can still remember people’s optimism and bravery, faced with such a tough existence. It is because of this attitude that Uganda is now taken as a model by other African countries combating rampant Aids. The yellow and orange shades of the deser ts surrounding Khartoum in Sudan were a stark contrast to the green vegetation of Uganda. Sudanese people are tall, handsome and careful people, but are being heavily influenced by fundamentalist groups. It is such a shame to see Darfur becoming a war zone, just as southern Sudan once was. However, as we saw in southern Sudan, when peace ended years of war, peace is not just a dream – it can prevail.

Let Us Remember Eoin Troy (1955) James Liddy (1952) Nicholas Smyth (1933 & 1940) Fr. Dominic (Seán) Johnson (1951) Padraig Hughes (2006)

After Sudan came Ethiopia, with its unique people and rich history. I always remember visiting Merkato, the largest open-air market in Africa. It was always awash with colour, and there was always a buzz of excitement in the air. Unfortunately, Ethiopia is one of the poorest countries in the world, and in no place is that more evident than in Addis Ababa, where the streets are filled with beggars –street children, orphans, ex-soldiers left limbless without any government support. Ethiopia’s real wealth is in its people and history; its rock-hewn orthodox churches and monasteries; its unforgettable highlands; its fabled kingdom with its revered kings (including the late Haile Selassie, held as a prophet by the Rastafarians).

www.myubique.com info@myubique.com

Abbot Patrick Hederman After sixteen years of valiant service to the community and indeed to everyone who lives and works in Glenstal, Abbot Christopher Dillon passed the charge of that wider Glenstal Community to Abbot Patrick Hederman who, man and boy, has lived in Glenstal for over fifty years. The astonishment of the elected was only matched by the enthusiasm and genuine joy of the electors who are convinced that the Holy Spirit guided their choice.

Fr. Dominic Johnson

I learned Swahili whilst living in Tanzania, as I learned Luganda in Uganda, some Arabic in Sudan and Amharic in Ethiopia. Everywhere I have been, I found that once you try to speak their language, people no longer treat you as an mzungu, a white stranger or traveller, but as a mafrica, an adopted African.

I constantly return to Africa both spiritually and physically. The old adage, “You can take the man out of Africa, but you can’t take Africa out of the man” is true for me. Peadar Brehony (2007)

Charles Glynn (1964) Bernadette Murphy, Mother of Conn Tom McCann, Father of Tom, Walter & Rupert

Maureen Goor, Wife of Yves (†), Mother of Philip Tom Cleary, Father of Simon. Tom Breen, Father of Tony, Teacher.

Jack Binchy, Father of Aaron & Owen Beth, baby daughter of Joelle & Matthew Coghlan

Edited by Andrew Nugent osb Layout & Print by INTYPE Ltd.

■ 10.00 Mass with Community ■ 11.15 Coffee ■ 11.45 AGM ■ Lunch 2.00 COME FOR ALL – OR ANY PART OF THE DAY. PLEASE NOTIFY IF COMING FOR LUNCH ANNE O’REILLY has moved to a new address, very near Glenstal. Room 64, Millbrae Lodge Nursing Home, Newport, Co. Tipp. Her private Tel. is 061-373264. She is very well and quite mobile, and will be delighted to receive visitors.

I returned to Tanzania after Ethiopia, this time to Arusha in the north, where I lived for six years before coming back to Ireland. Tanzania has it all in natural beauty, from national parks teeming with wildlife, to the highest free-standing mountain in the world with its own bright white glaciers, to the aquamarine ocean and beige sands of Zanzibar.

Living in Tanzania gave me the opportunity to learn a great deal from some of the tribes which live in the region, including the Maasai (pastoralists) and the Hadza (hunter gatherers). They both live by ancient but very different customs and traditions. One notion they both share is that respect for the environment is vital to survival. We could learn a lot from their wisdom.

A.G.M. GLENSTAL SOCIETY Sunday April 5th 2009

Three Abbots of Glenstal

Class of ’88 REUNION

A

lerted, well ahead of time, by various classmates that it was approaching 20 years since we had left Glenstal, we began to organise celebrations which would do justice to this significant event.

monks as we encountered along the way, after which the fitter members of the group headed off for an even more nostalgic game of tip rugby. Thankfully nobody died – and there was only one serious injury!

On Saturday 3rd May, 2008, the first of the revellers started to congregate in Murroe. We had planned to have lunch in the Valley Inn (“for old times’ sake”) but it turned out that they didn’t do food so we moved up the road to the next pub. It was here that a suspected American tourist, spotted looking nervously around and overheard asking for directions, turned out to be the longlost Cyril Downing.

After some final photographs under the arch we made our way back to Adare and the Dunraven Arms. Dinner was delicious and we were honoured to be joined by Fr Andrew and Br Patrick, with Fr Abbot Christopher putting in a surprise, but much appreciated, appearance. The high spirits were lowered only temporarily by the current writer’s speech, dwelling as it did on the mid-life crisis of meaning, although an epiphanic Matthew Bruton couldn’t hold back his yells of enthusiasm.

Acquiring additional bodies all the while, the group next moved on to Glenstal where we did a nostalgic tour of the school, greeting as many

Continued overleaf

A

very wide circle of friends, family, Old Boys, and certainly his community were saddened to hear of Fr. Dominic’s death on 10th December 2008. Loveable for his passionate loyalties – which were numerous: Holy Mother Church, Limerick, Munster Rugby – he was exemplary for the courage and good humour with which he faced and accepted his protracted last illness. Please read Abbot Patrick’s homily at the funeral Mass (myubique.com). It will inspire and make you happy.


2 GLENSTAL NEWSLETTER Spring 2009

Spring 2009 GLENSTAL NEWSLETTER 3

CLASS OF ’88 REUNION Continued Dinner over, the reminiscences, catching-up and music began in earnest. We were lucky to have a great turn-out with 30 of the class attending. Everyone deserves praise for making themselves available and helping with different organisational aspects. However, the “can-do” attitude was exemplified by Paul Hegarty who, leaving wife and newly-

Since then we’ve been keeping in regular contact and I believe that, even now, Richard Tierney is hatching dramatic plans for the 25th reunion. Simon Nugent (1982-1988)

Don O’Connor (1938-1942)

I

had the pleasure of knowing Don O’Connor for almost seventy years. He went to Glenstal in 1938 and I followed him a year later. We left Glenstal together in 1942. On leaving school Don qualified as a Civil Engineer in U.C.D. Both of his parents were from Cork and on qualifying, he went there and immediately embarked on a very varied and successful professional career. After a few years running his own building contracting firm, he joined John A. Wood Ltd., one of the biggest contracting firms in the south of Ireland. It later became a part of Roadstone Ltd, of which Don was appointed a director. Then in 1968 he was head hunted by Cramptons and finally joined Guinness and Mahon as head of their property department. In 1949, at the age of twenty-five he married Mary Fitzgerald, daughter of a well known Cork businessman. Admirably suited to each other, it was a most successful marriage. After his retirement, Don and Mary went to live on Heir Island, a small island in Roaring Water Bay in West Cork, where they had bought a cottage in ruin in 1968, the year they moved to Dublin, a cottage which over the years they had converted into a very comfortable dwelling. Fortunately for their friends they retained a pied-a-terre

in Dublin so we were able to see them on their occasional trips to the city, in addition to enjoying wonderful visits to the island. These become possible as a result of a number of developments. An adjoining plot with a house on it was acquired and two additional houses were built. The island became a much loved holiday home to Don and Mary’s children (one of whom, Timothy, was at Glenstal between 1962 and 1968) and grand children and a haven for their many friends amongst whom were many of the monks from Glenstal. In his retirement Don continued to be a member of the Board of the Mater Public Hospital, and he was asked to oversee the building of the New Mater Private Hospital. This he did with his normal thoroughness and the construction was successfully completed. Don was a man of many parts. A very capable engineer, successful in the world of business, and a man of faith and absolute integrity. One could never imagine him deviating in even the slightest way from what was right. In his private life a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather, gentle, patient, caring and considerate, and for those of us who had the good fortune to know him, a faithful friend. May the Lord grant him eternal rest. John Blayney (1939-1942)

Nicholas Smyth (1932-33: 1942-43) Nicholas Smyth, the very first boy in the school in September 1932 (aged 8 – he was born in April 1924) died in Naples, Florida on November 29th, 2008. He spent one year in Glenstal, then went to Ampleforth, but returned to Glenstal for a year in the early forties. He studied first at U.C.D. and completed his medical studies at the University of Michigan in 1954. He remained on the faculty of George Washington University for almost forty years and was also a teacher and surgeon at several hospitals and

Padraig Hughes (2000 -2006)

born baby back in Houston, flew in, partied through the night and then flew straight back again the next morning.

at the National Institute of Health, He specialised in thoracic surgery. As a clinical researcher he invented and patented pacemakers, including the world’s smallest nuclear pacemaker and was responsible for many innovations in the area of his specialisation. He found time, too, to write medical mystery novels, ‘Heartbreak’ (2002) and ‘Phoenix’ (to be published). We extend to his wife Elizabeth and his family (including Abbot Christopher, who was a first cousin) our deepest sympathy.

Caring, Friendly, Intelligent, Adventurous, Hilarious, Mischievous! (Killian)

Padraig’s life is characterised by a wonderful “joie de vivre”, a resolution to enjoy life and not to hold anything back, to laugh where others fretted. Padraig succeeded in living a life both carefully balanced, and enviably excessive. This twinned with his personable and witty nature nurtured a wide circle of friends, who valued him for his many gifts, prominent among which was his level headed advice. For his outgoing nature belied a resounding spiritual fortitude from which Padraig drew the courage and strength that sustained not only him but also those close to him through the difficult times which followed the death of his mother Kim in 2004. Padraig will be fondly remembered; the corners of his mouth turning gently upwards into a wry smile and a mischievous twinkle in his eye. (Darragh)

He made us want to fulfill our potential (Seb) A clever man who had compassion for all and lived life to laugh (Will) Prankster Ambitious Determined Rowdy Articulate Intelligent Great Friend (Karl & Jerome)

OLIVE GROWING in Oz lives were the things that Europeans put in food–and that true Irish kids left on the side of the plate. Olive oil, on the other hand, was the rancid stuff that ranked with (ugh) caster oil as the most revolting stuff on the planet.

O

It was only years later that I found out that Extra Virgin Olive Oil – the real stuff – was really fantastic. It had all sorts of tastes and characteristics depending on cultivar, region, etc. Rather like wines. I often say to customers, ‘This is a mild to moderate oil and this one is more robust – rather like the difference between a cabSav and a Shiraz.’ Regrettably there is still much of that awful cheap imported stuff from Europe that has travelled too far, and too slowly. In the mid 1990s we started to think about what we might do with the 40 acres we lived on outside Canberra. We had missed the boat with boutique wineries and avoided the other ‘instant riches’ schemes. We went for a world traded product – olives - of which 95% of Australian consumption was imported from the Med. We are micro growers (the wineries are boutique: we are micro!) with 2,000 trees and a capacity of around

Wedding Bells STEPHEN KIERAN (1995) & NOELLE MCGRATH LYONS O’KEEFFE (1990) & NICOLE RICHARDS KENN O’RIORDAN (1995) & SINÉAD HUSSEY BRENDAN WALSH (1994) & LOUISA BRIOUA ROBIN TOTTENHAM (1995) & NICOLA NEWALL PETER REILLY (2001) & NIAMH WYCHERLEY

50 – 80 tons of olives per year. We are now at 8 tons from our young trees and have established our own labels, market outlets and internet site. The business is a family affair, Caroline looks after the table olives – we process about a ton per year currently - and I look after the oils. Our eldest daughter, Suzanne, assists with the marketing and it is a statutory requirement that ALL grandchildren must participate in the harvest! Important to get a grip on the work ethic early in life….not to mention supporting the aging!! This year we have won a national silver medal with our oils, become ‘certified’ so we can use the unique “Australian Extra Virgin” brand, and have started on the road to organic certification. I have just been recognised by Food & Wine as a ‘food hero’ of the year “because he’s at the forefront of a young industry that could prove big for Canberra and because he makes beautiful olive oil”. Cripes!!! Harvest 2009 will be in the weeks before some of us gather in Adare to celebrate our ‘escape’ from Glenstal 50 years ago. Will arrive exhausted, but with a good fresh drop of 2009 oil…… Peter O’Clery (1955-1959)

PUBLICATIONS The Glenstal Book of Daily Prayer (Columba) The Glenstal Book of Readings for the Seasons (Columba) Peter Cunningham, The Sea and the Silence (New Island) Andrew Nugent, Soul Murder (Hachette)


2 GLENSTAL NEWSLETTER Spring 2009

Spring 2009 GLENSTAL NEWSLETTER 3

CLASS OF ’88 REUNION Continued Dinner over, the reminiscences, catching-up and music began in earnest. We were lucky to have a great turn-out with 30 of the class attending. Everyone deserves praise for making themselves available and helping with different organisational aspects. However, the “can-do” attitude was exemplified by Paul Hegarty who, leaving wife and newly-

Since then we’ve been keeping in regular contact and I believe that, even now, Richard Tierney is hatching dramatic plans for the 25th reunion. Simon Nugent (1982-1988)

Don O’Connor (1938-1942)

I

had the pleasure of knowing Don O’Connor for almost seventy years. He went to Glenstal in 1938 and I followed him a year later. We left Glenstal together in 1942. On leaving school Don qualified as a Civil Engineer in U.C.D. Both of his parents were from Cork and on qualifying, he went there and immediately embarked on a very varied and successful professional career. After a few years running his own building contracting firm, he joined John A. Wood Ltd., one of the biggest contracting firms in the south of Ireland. It later became a part of Roadstone Ltd, of which Don was appointed a director. Then in 1968 he was head hunted by Cramptons and finally joined Guinness and Mahon as head of their property department. In 1949, at the age of twenty-five he married Mary Fitzgerald, daughter of a well known Cork businessman. Admirably suited to each other, it was a most successful marriage. After his retirement, Don and Mary went to live on Heir Island, a small island in Roaring Water Bay in West Cork, where they had bought a cottage in ruin in 1968, the year they moved to Dublin, a cottage which over the years they had converted into a very comfortable dwelling. Fortunately for their friends they retained a pied-a-terre

in Dublin so we were able to see them on their occasional trips to the city, in addition to enjoying wonderful visits to the island. These become possible as a result of a number of developments. An adjoining plot with a house on it was acquired and two additional houses were built. The island became a much loved holiday home to Don and Mary’s children (one of whom, Timothy, was at Glenstal between 1962 and 1968) and grand children and a haven for their many friends amongst whom were many of the monks from Glenstal. In his retirement Don continued to be a member of the Board of the Mater Public Hospital, and he was asked to oversee the building of the New Mater Private Hospital. This he did with his normal thoroughness and the construction was successfully completed. Don was a man of many parts. A very capable engineer, successful in the world of business, and a man of faith and absolute integrity. One could never imagine him deviating in even the slightest way from what was right. In his private life a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather, gentle, patient, caring and considerate, and for those of us who had the good fortune to know him, a faithful friend. May the Lord grant him eternal rest. John Blayney (1939-1942)

Nicholas Smyth (1932-33: 1942-43) Nicholas Smyth, the very first boy in the school in September 1932 (aged 8 – he was born in April 1924) died in Naples, Florida on November 29th, 2008. He spent one year in Glenstal, then went to Ampleforth, but returned to Glenstal for a year in the early forties. He studied first at U.C.D. and completed his medical studies at the University of Michigan in 1954. He remained on the faculty of George Washington University for almost forty years and was also a teacher and surgeon at several hospitals and

Padraig Hughes (2000 -2006)

born baby back in Houston, flew in, partied through the night and then flew straight back again the next morning.

at the National Institute of Health, He specialised in thoracic surgery. As a clinical researcher he invented and patented pacemakers, including the world’s smallest nuclear pacemaker and was responsible for many innovations in the area of his specialisation. He found time, too, to write medical mystery novels, ‘Heartbreak’ (2002) and ‘Phoenix’ (to be published). We extend to his wife Elizabeth and his family (including Abbot Christopher, who was a first cousin) our deepest sympathy.

Caring, Friendly, Intelligent, Adventurous, Hilarious, Mischievous! (Killian)

Padraig’s life is characterised by a wonderful “joie de vivre”, a resolution to enjoy life and not to hold anything back, to laugh where others fretted. Padraig succeeded in living a life both carefully balanced, and enviably excessive. This twinned with his personable and witty nature nurtured a wide circle of friends, who valued him for his many gifts, prominent among which was his level headed advice. For his outgoing nature belied a resounding spiritual fortitude from which Padraig drew the courage and strength that sustained not only him but also those close to him through the difficult times which followed the death of his mother Kim in 2004. Padraig will be fondly remembered; the corners of his mouth turning gently upwards into a wry smile and a mischievous twinkle in his eye. (Darragh)

He made us want to fulfill our potential (Seb) A clever man who had compassion for all and lived life to laugh (Will) Prankster Ambitious Determined Rowdy Articulate Intelligent Great Friend (Karl & Jerome)

OLIVE GROWING in Oz lives were the things that Europeans put in food–and that true Irish kids left on the side of the plate. Olive oil, on the other hand, was the rancid stuff that ranked with (ugh) caster oil as the most revolting stuff on the planet.

O

It was only years later that I found out that Extra Virgin Olive Oil – the real stuff – was really fantastic. It had all sorts of tastes and characteristics depending on cultivar, region, etc. Rather like wines. I often say to customers, ‘This is a mild to moderate oil and this one is more robust – rather like the difference between a cabSav and a Shiraz.’ Regrettably there is still much of that awful cheap imported stuff from Europe that has travelled too far, and too slowly. In the mid 1990s we started to think about what we might do with the 40 acres we lived on outside Canberra. We had missed the boat with boutique wineries and avoided the other ‘instant riches’ schemes. We went for a world traded product – olives - of which 95% of Australian consumption was imported from the Med. We are micro growers (the wineries are boutique: we are micro!) with 2,000 trees and a capacity of around

Wedding Bells STEPHEN KIERAN (1995) & NOELLE MCGRATH LYONS O’KEEFFE (1990) & NICOLE RICHARDS KENN O’RIORDAN (1995) & SINÉAD HUSSEY BRENDAN WALSH (1994) & LOUISA BRIOUA ROBIN TOTTENHAM (1995) & NICOLA NEWALL PETER REILLY (2001) & NIAMH WYCHERLEY

50 – 80 tons of olives per year. We are now at 8 tons from our young trees and have established our own labels, market outlets and internet site. The business is a family affair, Caroline looks after the table olives – we process about a ton per year currently - and I look after the oils. Our eldest daughter, Suzanne, assists with the marketing and it is a statutory requirement that ALL grandchildren must participate in the harvest! Important to get a grip on the work ethic early in life….not to mention supporting the aging!! This year we have won a national silver medal with our oils, become ‘certified’ so we can use the unique “Australian Extra Virgin” brand, and have started on the road to organic certification. I have just been recognised by Food & Wine as a ‘food hero’ of the year “because he’s at the forefront of a young industry that could prove big for Canberra and because he makes beautiful olive oil”. Cripes!!! Harvest 2009 will be in the weeks before some of us gather in Adare to celebrate our ‘escape’ from Glenstal 50 years ago. Will arrive exhausted, but with a good fresh drop of 2009 oil…… Peter O’Clery (1955-1959)

PUBLICATIONS The Glenstal Book of Daily Prayer (Columba) The Glenstal Book of Readings for the Seasons (Columba) Peter Cunningham, The Sea and the Silence (New Island) Andrew Nugent, Soul Murder (Hachette)


4 GLENSTAL NEWSLETTER Spring 2009

Colourful Continent frica was once commonly referred to as the Dark Continent - full of strange diseases, dark people, and an unexplored interior. The Africa that I know is no Dark Continent, but rather the Colourful Continent. It is colourful in every sense: full of rich and diverse colours, of vibrant and warm people and blessed with amazing natural beauty.

A

I cannot say that I have lived all over Africa, but I have moved country six times so far in my life, mostly within East Africa. I have lived in central Tanzania, Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia and northern Tanzania. My parents worked as development aid workers with Concern, Irish Aid, and the Medical Missionaries of Mary, and I have seen first hand the benefits of helping people to help themselves. Each and every country that I lived in was stunningly beautiful with countless wonderful people. My latest move was back here to Ireland, to Glenstal Abbey School where I completed my Leaving Certificate. Although I am Irish and love Ireland, I was only two months old when I left for drier pastures in central Tanzania. My first word was dudu, “insect” in Swahili and my first language was Luganda, which I learned once I moved to Uganda at the age of 18 months. Uganda is to my mind the Emerald Isle of Africa. The people there are as friendly and warm as Irish people, and the country itself has as many shades of green as Ireland. The country was in the middle of an Aids crisis while we lived there, but I can still remember people’s optimism and bravery, faced with such a tough existence. It is because of this attitude that Uganda is now taken as a model by other African countries combating rampant Aids. The yellow and orange shades of the deser ts surrounding Khartoum in Sudan were a stark contrast to the green vegetation of Uganda. Sudanese people are tall, handsome and careful people, but are being heavily influenced by fundamentalist groups. It is such a shame to see Darfur becoming a war zone, just as southern Sudan once was. However, as we saw in southern Sudan, when peace ended years of war, peace is not just a dream – it can prevail.

Let Us Remember Eoin Troy (1955) James Liddy (1952) Nicholas Smyth (1933 & 1940) Fr. Dominic (Seán) Johnson (1951) Padraig Hughes (2006)

After Sudan came Ethiopia, with its unique people and rich history. I always remember visiting Merkato, the largest open-air market in Africa. It was always awash with colour, and there was always a buzz of excitement in the air. Unfortunately, Ethiopia is one of the poorest countries in the world, and in no place is that more evident than in Addis Ababa, where the streets are filled with beggars –street children, orphans, ex-soldiers left limbless without any government support. Ethiopia’s real wealth is in its people and history; its rock-hewn orthodox churches and monasteries; its unforgettable highlands; its fabled kingdom with its revered kings (including the late Haile Selassie, held as a prophet by the Rastafarians).

www.myubique.com info@myubique.com

Abbot Patrick Hederman After sixteen years of valiant service to the community and indeed to everyone who lives and works in Glenstal, Abbot Christopher Dillon passed the charge of that wider Glenstal Community to Abbot Patrick Hederman who, man and boy, has lived in Glenstal for over fifty years. The astonishment of the elected was only matched by the enthusiasm and genuine joy of the electors who are convinced that the Holy Spirit guided their choice.

Fr. Dominic Johnson

I learned Swahili whilst living in Tanzania, as I learned Luganda in Uganda, some Arabic in Sudan and Amharic in Ethiopia. Everywhere I have been, I found that once you try to speak their language, people no longer treat you as an mzungu, a white stranger or traveller, but as a mafrica, an adopted African.

I constantly return to Africa both spiritually and physically. The old adage, “You can take the man out of Africa, but you can’t take Africa out of the man” is true for me. Peadar Brehony (2007)

Charles Glynn (1964) Bernadette Murphy, Mother of Conn Tom McCann, Father of Tom, Walter & Rupert

Maureen Goor, Wife of Yves (†), Mother of Philip Tom Cleary, Father of Simon. Tom Breen, Father of Tony, Teacher.

Jack Binchy, Father of Aaron & Owen Beth, baby daughter of Joelle & Matthew Coghlan

Edited by Andrew Nugent osb Layout & Print by INTYPE Ltd.

■ 10.00 Mass with Community ■ 11.15 Coffee ■ 11.45 AGM ■ Lunch 2.00 COME FOR ALL – OR ANY PART OF THE DAY. PLEASE NOTIFY IF COMING FOR LUNCH ANNE O’REILLY has moved to a new address, very near Glenstal. Room 64, Millbrae Lodge Nursing Home, Newport, Co. Tipp. Her private Tel. is 061-373264. She is very well and quite mobile, and will be delighted to receive visitors.

I returned to Tanzania after Ethiopia, this time to Arusha in the north, where I lived for six years before coming back to Ireland. Tanzania has it all in natural beauty, from national parks teeming with wildlife, to the highest free-standing mountain in the world with its own bright white glaciers, to the aquamarine ocean and beige sands of Zanzibar.

Living in Tanzania gave me the opportunity to learn a great deal from some of the tribes which live in the region, including the Maasai (pastoralists) and the Hadza (hunter gatherers). They both live by ancient but very different customs and traditions. One notion they both share is that respect for the environment is vital to survival. We could learn a lot from their wisdom.

A.G.M. GLENSTAL SOCIETY Sunday April 5th 2009

Three Abbots of Glenstal

Class of ’88 REUNION

A

lerted, well ahead of time, by various classmates that it was approaching 20 years since we had left Glenstal, we began to organise celebrations which would do justice to this significant event.

monks as we encountered along the way, after which the fitter members of the group headed off for an even more nostalgic game of tip rugby. Thankfully nobody died – and there was only one serious injury!

On Saturday 3rd May, 2008, the first of the revellers started to congregate in Murroe. We had planned to have lunch in the Valley Inn (“for old times’ sake”) but it turned out that they didn’t do food so we moved up the road to the next pub. It was here that a suspected American tourist, spotted looking nervously around and overheard asking for directions, turned out to be the longlost Cyril Downing.

After some final photographs under the arch we made our way back to Adare and the Dunraven Arms. Dinner was delicious and we were honoured to be joined by Fr Andrew and Br Patrick, with Fr Abbot Christopher putting in a surprise, but much appreciated, appearance. The high spirits were lowered only temporarily by the current writer’s speech, dwelling as it did on the mid-life crisis of meaning, although an epiphanic Matthew Bruton couldn’t hold back his yells of enthusiasm.

Acquiring additional bodies all the while, the group next moved on to Glenstal where we did a nostalgic tour of the school, greeting as many

Continued overleaf

A

very wide circle of friends, family, Old Boys, and certainly his community were saddened to hear of Fr. Dominic’s death on 10th December 2008. Loveable for his passionate loyalties – which were numerous: Holy Mother Church, Limerick, Munster Rugby – he was exemplary for the courage and good humour with which he faced and accepted his protracted last illness. Please read Abbot Patrick’s homily at the funeral Mass (myubique.com). It will inspire and make you happy.


2009spring