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Vol. LXXVIII No. 6 USPS 373340



Join the AOH Christmas Appeal Clara Reilly awarded 2011 AOH Sean MacBride Humanitarian Award By Sean Pender As boards and divisions continue to consider their contributions to the annual Freedom for All Ireland Christmas appeal, I would like to present a speech I made recently regarding Relatives for Justice. It is my hope that it will convey to you the importance of the work that we support with our appeal: It was almost 10 years ago that I first met Mark Thompson, Clara Reilly and the staff of Relatives for Justice (RFJ) in their Falls Road office in West Belfast. In that time I have learned about the hundreds of families that they have helped in their quest for justice. I have had the honor to personally meet dozens of these families and learn firsthand of their quest for justice. I have been in awe of the staff of RFJ and inspired by their determination to fight for truth and justice. Often faced with what would seem insurmountable odds, they labor on, for they have the truth as their most valuable asset on their side. Through my work with the AOH I have rallied support for RFJ at the local, state and national levels. The AOH has helped with our donations and our voices; We have told their story in meeting halls, conventions and to our elected officials both locally and in the halls of Congress. Dealing with the past in a transparent and truthful way is a remaining challenge of not only the Good Friday agreement but a key component of the transition of a society from post conflict to true, lasting peace. It is the difference of defining a fragile peace as a lack of war to a lasting sustainable peace for equals. RFJ’s quest is for justice for those families still seeking truth.

In This Issue… Clara Reilly, 2011 Sean MacBride Humanitarian Award winner, with Sean Pender, Mike Redmond and Mike Glass.

Unfortunately, that quest for justice and truth has been often delayed, deferred, postponed and put off by the existing systems that are in place in the North of Ireland. For the truth to emerge, the vehicle that will provide the process must be free from the prejudices of the British government and her henchmen disguised as civil service employees in offices that they still influence. Britain has had its opportunity to address the past but it has failed terribly. Justice — even when it has been achieved — takes not months or years but generations. Ignoring the issues is no longer an option. Britain must acknowledge what it has done, admit what it has done and apologize to those it has harmed. It is my hope that the recent awarding of the 2011 AOH Sean MacBride Humanitarian award to Clara Reilly, chairperson and

McBride Award Winner

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President’s Dinner

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Meehan to receive Golden Bridges Award In 2007, Mairtin O Muilleoir, publisher of the Irish Echo, announced the Golden Bridges award, to be annually presented in tribute to those who had built golden bridges of prosperity and investment between the U.S. and the North of Ireland. This year, the recipients are author Mike MacDonald, Mary McAleer of the Irish American Partnership and AOH Past National President Jack Meehan. Jack was nominated by Boston’s undocumented Irish community for his more than 30 years of service to that cause. The awards were presented at a luncheon to be held at the Seaport Hotel and World Trade Centre, Boston, on November 11. The guest speaker was Gerry Adams, TD. Our congratulations to Jack.

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Ireland’s Consul General

Major Degree team certified in South Carolina The newest Ancient Order of Hibernians Major Degree Team is the Carraig Phadraig Major Degree Team in South Carolina. The team has been practicing for over a year and was chaired by Past State President Neil Diamond. National Ritual Chairman Patrick Shannon certified it at the 7th bi-annual State Convention in Charleston on October 22. The Rock of Cashel (Irish: Carraig Phadraig), also known as Cashel of Kings and St. Patrick’s Rock is a historic site in Ireland’s province of Munster, located at Cashel, South Tipperary. The Rock of Cashel was the traditional seat of the Kings of Munster for several hundred years. Cashel is reputed to be the site of the conversion of the King of Munster by St. Patrick in the 5th century. The Msgr. John L Manning Division in Charleston County and the Brian Boru Division in Berkeley County formed the team. It

includes members from Horry and Beaufort counties. Key members are Al Stiles, Jim Kelly, Tim Keneflick, James Nettles and Martin Fosberry. At the 7th bi-annual convention, the team performed its first Major Degree for a group of 49 new candidates. This brings the state to 170 major degree members out of a total of more than 500 members. Candidates came from all nine Divisions in South Carolina. The team held a practice for National Ritual Chairman Patrick Shannon on Friday before the convention. He made several small suggestions to help improve the team performance. National Director Len Byrne, Past New York State President John Hennessey and National President Seamus Boyle also attended the degree. Pictured below is the New Carriag Phadraig Degree Team

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State News California . . . . . . . . . . . . .19 Connecticut . . . . . . . . . . .16 DC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 Florida . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .17 Illinois . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20 Louisiana . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 Maryland . . . . . . . . . . . . .19 Massachusetts . . . . . . . . .18 Michigan . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 Minnesota . . . . . . . . . . . .17 Missouri . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20 New Jersey . . . . . . . . . . . .18 New York . . . . . . . . . . . . .19 North Carolina . . . . . . . . .16 Ohio . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 Pennsylvania . . . . . . . . . .20 Rhode Island . . . . . . . . . .18 South Carolina . . . . . . . . .12 Wisconsin . . . . . . . . . . . . .16 LAOH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21 More news at

Help if you can ®

NATIONAL BOARD OFFICERS Rev. Thomas M O’Donnell. . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Chaplain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Rev. Henry Reid . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Deputy Nat’l Chaplain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Rev. Joseph Pearce . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Deputy Nat’l Chaplain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Seamus Boyle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l President . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Brendan Moore. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Vice Pres. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Thomas D McNabb . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Secretary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . James McKay. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Treasurer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Keith Carney . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Director Northeast. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Jere Cole . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Director Northeast . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Catholic Action Len Byrne. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Director South . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Pro Life Christopher Norris. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . National Director Northeast . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Charities & Missions Daniel O’Connell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Director Midwest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Organizer Michael O’Connor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Director West . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Anti Defamation Mike McCormack . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Historian/Archivist . . . . . . . . . . . . . George J Clough, Jr. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Legal Council . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . John O’Connell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Eugene Burns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nat’l Web Master . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sean Pender. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Freedom For All Ireland . . . . . . . John J Kelly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Veterans Affairs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dan Dennehey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Immigration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . William Sullivan. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Irish Way Program . . . . . . . . Ned McGinley . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Co-chair Nat’l Policital Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Joe Roche . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Co-chair Nat’l Policital Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Patrick Shannon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Ritual & Degrees . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Vincent Lysaght . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Notre Dame Fund . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kevin Donohue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Constitution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Edward Dougherty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Hibernian Hunger . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Edward Wallace . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair Project St Patrick . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Liam McNabb . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chair 2012 Nat’l Conv. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Joe Roach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Co-Chair Oversight Committee . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nick Murphy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Co-Chair Oversight Committee. . . . . . . . George Clough, Jr. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Co-Chair Oversight Committee. . . . . . . . . .

There is an organization that has chapters in many states and is made up of Catholic men and women who are dedicated to assisting developmentally disabled children and adults. They are having an Irish concert in Englewood, Florida, on February 2nd 2012. Any AOH member who is interested in working with these “Special Friends” or attending the concert can contact Marvin Peschel at (941) 473-2458 or George Wright (610) 613-8848 or This is what Hibernians are all about, helping those who are less fortunate than ourselves.

Kentucky News

The Third Annual Ancient order of Hibernians’ Irish for Kids Golf Scramble was on September 16, with the proceeds benefiting Boys & Girls Haven. The luck of the Irish was definitely with us as 108 golfers took to the links on a beautiful sunny afternoon. Even though no one was luckily enough to win a trip to Ireland by making a hole-in-one everyone enjoyed themselves. The big winner of the day was Boys & Girls Haven as the scramble raised $7,500. On September 30, The Trinity Shamrocks took on their archrivals, The St. X Tigers. This is one of the biggest high school football games in the nation. The Hibernians have a long tradition of presenting the winner of this heated contest with the shillelagh. This year was no exception as the Hibernians proudly awarded the victorious Trinity Shamrocks with the shillelagh as they defeated the St. X Tigers.

LIVING PAST NATIONAL PRESIDENTS John J. Meehan, Jr. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2006 - 2008 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ned McGinley . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2002 - 2006 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Edward J. Wallace. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1994 - 1998 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . George J. Clough Jr. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1990 - 1994 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nicholas Murphy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1986 - 1988 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Joseph A. Roche . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1982 - 1986 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Thomas D. McNabb. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1978 - 1980 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .


Subscription price of $8.00 included in the organization’s dues. Periodical postage paid at Ronkonkoma, NY 11779-9998 USPS 373340 A bi-monthly publication dedicated to Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity. The National Hibernian Digest is the complete chronicle of the ideals, hopes, and achievements of Hibernians everywhere. The National Hibernian Digest is printed and mailed out of Ronkonkoma, NY 11779-9998 and additional mailing offices in February, April, June, August, October and December. Office of publication is Clover Graphics Inc., 2050 Ocean Avenue, Ronkonkoma, NY 11779. The Hibernian Digest reserves the right to not include articles in this publication due to space limitations and editorial determination. The Digest will make every effort to include articles in future publications if possible. The articles submitted to the Digest do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in America, Inc., its Board of Directors, the Editor or its membership. The Hibernian Digest welcomes letters to the editor. Please send via e-mail to editor@hibernian and include your letter in the body of the e-mail. DO NOT send as an attachment. Letters can be mailed (typed only) to AOH Editor, National Hibernian Digest, c/o John O’Connell, 87-30 256th St., Floral Park. NY 11001. ALL LETTERS ARE SUBJECT TO EDITING. Anonymous letters will not be considered. Please include contact phone numbers for follow up. JOHN O’CONNELL . . . . . . . . . . . . .National Editor/Advertising. . . . . (646) 436-0811 KATHLEEN CONWAY . . . . . . . . . . Assistant Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . JOE McDONALD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Online Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .


Best Wishes for a Blessed Christmas from the AOH and LAOH National Boards National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Brothers, the summer seems to have passed us by without much notice; each year seems to go by quicker. It was a fairly busy summer with all the conventions taking place and many other functions as well. I attended the LAOH National President’s Dinner honoring Margaret Hennessy in Melville, New York, and it was a beautiful affair starting with the Mass on Saturday evening. There were three conventions that took place on the same weekend and since I had attended both California and Illinois for their last convention I decided to attend the third convention that weekend, which was held in Rhode Island. What a great affair that was, and in conjunction with their convention it was also a celebration of Division 1 Newport RI 135th anniversary of their founding. Meeting many of their group of energetic, young and vibrant division members was awesome. They have over 600 members in their division and are active in not only the Irish community but the whole city community as well. I often wonder when someone says they cannot get any new members to join their divisions when they have thousands more people than this area does why they cannot expand. There are places in our country with many more people in their state than Rhode Island has and yet a few divisions in RI has more members than states with millions of people to chose from. I had heard that a great Hibernian was in hospital and not doing too well, so I went to visit him. Al O’Hagan, who has been a Hibernian all of his life, as was his father before him, was in Pennsylvania Hospital so I decided to see how he was doing. I met this man many years ago and many of you who do not know Al personally, will recognize him from past conventions but especially if you took your major degrees with his team. I am happy to report that Al is doing better and on the mend at home in Deptford, New Jersey. Get well soon Al and we will see you at Turningstone next year. The Irish Fall Festival, run by Division 1 Cape May County, NJ, has come and gone again in my second home in North Wildwood with over 200,000 people attending this year’s festivities. Over 100 vendors from all around the country were selling their wares and a minimal number of offensive materials were on display. The goal of the festival is to have a zero tolerance for anything being sold that is degrading or offensive to our race. With such a large crowd and so many vendors it is hard to police the entire area but I must say that they have done a tremendous job over the years to curtail much of the garbage that is sold by many merchants all over our country. We must be vigilant of the materials being peddled by unscrupulous people who do not care who they offend. The weekend started with the boxing matches, 10 bouts, between a boxing club from Belfast and a club from Philadelphia. The Irish team again excelled and won more than half the bouts. The bagpipe competition took place on Saturday and although the knats and bugs chased many people away, the clubs continued to entertain the crowd. Sunday morning started with a Mass at St Anne’s, as it does every year for the past 20 years, followed by the parade, the largest in the county. I was honored to be in the company of the Grand Marshal, Jon Cavaiani, a Medal of Honor recipient, and a person who I was proud to be with that day. Although the name is not Irish, Jon was born in Ireland, immigrated to America as a child, and was adopted by the Cavaiani family and took their name. He was a POW in Vietnam for more than a year and is a Hibernian brother in Division 88 in Philadelphia. On a personal note, it was a very busy October for me starting with the wedding of my youngest daughter, Bronagh, on October 1st to a great guy, John Zadnik. Relatives from Ireland, 11 of them, descended on Philadelphia for the wedding and the following weekend for my testimonial dinner. As I said at the dinner in my remarks, “they are like grandchildren, I love to see them come but I also love to see them go,” and that works both ways when we go back to visit them. All kidding aside, it is always great to see family and the people at the dinner really made them feel at home and for that I thank you. The National Board meeting and the Testimonial Dinner went well and an overflow crowd again attended and all enjoyed themselves to the music of the Willie Lynch Band. The weekend started with the golf outing, which was enjoyed by all who participated, but many scores were questioned and many participants were questioned also about what kind of golf they were playing. The club visit was well received, although we did hear a few complaints that it lasted too long, and we apologize for that. The National Board meeting went very well and reports from almost every officer and chairman were given, with a special presentation given by the chairmen of the Commodore Barry Project, Jack O’Brien and John McInerney, and by FFAI Chairman Sean Pender, who showed his PowerPoint presentation on FFAI. The weekend saw a total of about $18,000 raised for the Barry Memorial. The dinner committee’s decision — to donate to the Barry Project in the name of the attendees rather than give them a favor — was a great idea and one that I wholeheartedly endorsed. The 175 Anniversary Journal was distributed at the dinner and I have never seen such a beautiful Journal in my life. The work that Mike McCormack, Chairman of the Journal and our National Historian, and Tom O’Donnell did on this Journal was unbelievable, they really outdid themselves with this gem. It is definitely a treasure to hold onto for your children to learn about Hibernianism and their Irish History. The recipient of the Sean MacBride award, Clara Reilly, who was most deserving of this prestigious award, made a rousing speech to the audience. Her family and friends flew in from Ireland and shocked her by attending the dinner. She is so deserving of the accolades she received and the standing ovation. What a tremendous woman. So many people were amazed at how long Clara has been involved in the fight for justice, what she went through and family she has lost, but as she said, it is not over yet — nor will it be — until justice is done for all the people. I would like to thank my entire committee, especially Nancy Cullen, who did all of the work on the dinner, Ed Dougherty, Tom & Peg O’Donnell, Joe Byrne, Louise Donnelly, the vocalist at the Mass, our National Chaplain and Deputy Chaplains for celebrating and National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

concelebrating the beautiful Mass and all the others who helped make the weekend a huge success. And thank you to those who sponsored holes at the golf outing and took ads in the Journal. I would be remiss if I did not thank all the people who presented me with gifts, proclamations and those who donated to the Barry Memorial in my name, especially the AOH & LAOH both locally and beyond, and the Irish Society of Philadelphia. I also want to thank and recognize all those people who helped with the entire celebration of our 175th Anniversary since the beginning of the year, especially our chairman, Ed Wallace. Thanks to Tom Beirne and the entire committee who worked so hard to make the New York weekend the success that it was. Mike McCormack, Patrick Allen, Consul General Noel Kilkenny and Vice Consul General, Jacqueline O’Halloran- Bernstein, who attended the dinner, and thank you for your remarks that night. To the owners and bartenders of the Black Sheep Restaurant in NY for their hospitality, all the musicians, especially the Hibernian Festival Singers at the Mass, the priests and all the others who participated in the Masses, the Basilica and St. Peter’s church for letting us use the facilities and for all who helped in any way, I thank you all as we wind down our 175th Anniversary Year 1836-2011. I want to wish you all a very Joyous and Holy Christmas season and may you have a Happy and Prosperous 2012.

Bernadette and Seamus Boyle along with son Michael, daughter Tara and six grandchildren at the wedding of daughter Bronagh and husband John.

Keeping Christ in Christmas A few days ago I was traveling from Philadelphia where I attended the AOH National Board Meeting and the President’s Dinner making my way to Jacksonville, Florida, for the Canon Law Convention. I could not believe my ears when I heard “Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer” coming from the car radio. Only October 10th and we were already being besieged with non-religious Christmas songs. However, these non-religious holiday songs are not to remind us of Christ’s birth, the dawn of our salvation. Unfortunately, materialism and commercialism, making the “big buck,” have replaced the significance of Christmas. The season to celebrate Christ’s Birth has been replaced by such titles as “Sparkle” Season. The number one way to keep Christ in our Christmas celebrations is to have Him present in our daily life. Keeping Christ in Christmas means daily revealing the character, love and spirit of Christ that dwells in you, by allowing these traits to shine through the actions of your everyday life. There are some simple ways to keep Christ the focus of your life. You can give God one very special gift just from you to Him. This gift can be something personal that no one else knows about, and let it be a sacrifice. Maybe this gift will be to forgive someone you’ve needed to forgive for a long time. Perhaps, your gift will be to commit to spending time with God daily. Set some time aside to read St. Luke’s account of the birth of Christ. Make sure you have a Nativity scene in your home. Plan a project of good will, like adopting a single mom. Make her life and her child’s life happier by buying her and her child a gift. Or maybe there is an elderly neighbor in need of home repairs, yard work or snow shoveling. Find someone with a genuine need; involve your whole family and see how happy you can make someone this Christmas. Set aside a time of family devotions on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning, especially by attending Mass together as a family. The wonder of Christmas is that in Jesus, God and humanity are meant for each other. The Christmas story tells us that God chooses to be human, chooses to know human life from the first moment of conception to the end of our days on earth. In Jesus, God knows what it is to be a toddler, to have a stomachache, to feel the sun and wind, to be betrayed and forsaken, and eventually to die. Incarnation is about God choosing to be one of us, so that we may become people of compassion, mercy, courage, justice, care, the presence of God here and now. In essence, we can become more like Christ, if we live out the Hibernian virtues of Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity in our daily lives. With every blessing and best wish for the peace and joy of Christmas.


Christmas Appeal continued from page 1

Highlights Fall 2011 has been both busy and exciting, with the weekend in Philadelphia standing out as a memorable high point. A very productive National Board meeting was held early in the day, followed by the National President’s Testimonial during which Seamus Boyle was appropriately thanked and roasted. Seamus shifted the focus from himself, however, to the winding down of the AOH’s 175th Anniversary Commemoration, as well as the presentation of the AOH/LAOH Sean MacBride Humanitarian Award. The entire event was a valuable opportunity to network with and enjoy the company of so many great Hibernians from across the United States. Coming two weeks later, the New York State Board meeting in Schenectady was an opportunity to deal with New York plans and issues, and I must admit that I came away very grateful and proud of having been endorsed by my Brothers to run for National President. Advent and Christmas challenge us to step back from the “busy and exciting” and dwell (mentally and spiritually!) in the realm of the quiet, the peaceful and the thought-filled. It’s not easy, but it’s the real Christmas gift we owe ourselves. Clara Reilly was this year’s recipient of the MacBride Award mentioned above. In reflecting back on 2011, I will certainly be thinking of her along with the other outstanding persons I have been blessed to be with during the past year. Because some have requested it, I offer below the speech I gave in presenting Clara with the MacBride Award. “Clara Reilly, native of Belfast, founding member of the United Campaign Against Plastic Bullets, founding member and chair of Relatives For Justice, has been selected as the 2011 MacBride Award recipient based on balloting conducted among National Board members and State Presidents of both the Ancient Order of Hibernians and the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians. The purpose of the prestigious Sean MacBride Award is specified in the AOH National Constitution, which states: ‘To memorialize the human rights contributions made by Nobel Peace Laureate Dr. Sean MacBride and to recognize the efforts of others who make similar contributions in the cause of peace, justice, and the economic wellbeing of the Irish people…’ I am certain that you will soon conclude that tonight’s honoree is the perfect choice for this year’s MacBride Award. The mother of six small children at the time, Clara began documenting British human rights abuses in the north of Ireland in 1970. In a world without cell phones, without email, or any online capabilities, Clara Reilly made records of arrests, took prisoner statements, and arranged for legal representation for ordinary citizens imprisoned by the Royal Ulster Constabulary. In an upside-down perversion of government, whereby citizens were savagely beaten on their own streets, only to be stockpiled and beaten again in undisclosed locations, she responded to the emotional needs of terrified family members anxious to learn the when, the where, the why, and the how of their loved ones’ arrests. In the Orwellian world of British misrule in Northern Ireland, Clara Reilly’s kitchen provided the calming cup of tea, as well as the message of sympathy, hope, and assurance so urgently needed by victims’ loved ones. With so few resources available to her except for her rocksolid sense of determination, a caring heart, and unshakable zeal for the rights of others, Clara Reilly managed to transform that tiny kitchen into command central in the quest for fair treatment for her fellow citizens. As both the British army and the RUC were to soon realize, Clara Reilly was not to be worn down, was not to be intimidated, and certainly was not to be dismissed in her quest for accurate information. She soon emerged as one of a different, fiercer, more invincible breed of combatants — the modern Irishwoman. She was successful in urging the Irish government to take the British government before the European Court on Human Rights where it was found guilty of torture and inhumane and degrading treatment. Along with attorney Pat Finucane, Clara again challenged the British government’s procedures as wrongful arrest. Ultimately, Reilly and Finucane were vindicated when the high court ruled that the process of interrogation the RUC called “screening” was illegal. But sadly, their victory was truly bittersweet in that it was followed by the assassination of Pat Finucane as he sat down to dinner with his wife and family. To this day the British government has failed to respond adequately to the widely held and carefully detailed contention that both the security forces and British intelligence units were at least complicit, if not the initiating force, behind Pat’s assassination. But for anyone else this would and should have been a message, a warning, a wake-up call, an obvious threat. To stop. To walk away. To surrender. Clearly, once again, the Brits failed to recognize the kind of person they were dealing with. Clara, when we announced your name as the recipient of this award there was a pervasive sense of satisfaction among Hibernians here in the U.S., as well as among your many close associates in Ireland. However, one of your own colleagues, Andre Murphy, of Relatives For Justice in Belfast, saw fit to send us a reflection on the impact of all you have sought to accomplish. I was most struck by three of his statements: First: ‘She defended human rights and human life at a time when they had lost their value in the turmoil of our recent Irish conflict…’ Next: ‘Clara Reilly stood up for those with no voice. For those being tortured, imprisoned without due process, being injured with no recourse, and murdered with impunity... Clara Reilly stood up and was counted, regardless of the fear she felt for herself and her own family.’ And finally, Murphy declared: ‘There are homes across the north where people will state that when the worst of our conflict came to their door, no one else did — but Clara Reilly.’ For these many reasons and more we are delighted and proud to present you with this 2011 AOH/LAOH Sean MacBride Humanitarian Award.”


founding member of Relatives for Justice and a woman who for 40 years has been the backbone of the civil and human rights movement for the people of the North, will continue to highlight the critical importance of truth recovery in North of Ireland. RFJ has proven to be a true broker for peace and justice in the North. They have supported families regardless of their religion or political affiliation. RFJ does not believe in a hierarchy of victims, they believe that we cannot let those who seek the truth be left behind. Their important work is often threatened and impeded by the subtle forms of discrimination that still exist in the North. A new building that RFJ desperately needs to serve the communities they support sits available and vacant but funding and support is held up by bigots disguised as bureaucrats. Funding is often tenuous with workers having to be laid off while new funding is searched for. But through all of this, they preserve and thrive. If we do not address the past then the truth will be the last victim of the troubles, and there will not be a strong foundation for the future. The future cannot be built on the lies of the past. A foundation of truth can be the only hope for the future. The work of RFJ will help cement the future of all people in the North. Notes: On October 14th, only three days after the cowardly British prime minister David Cameron reneged on his government’s commitments to the family of Pat Finucane, Geraldine Finucane, Pat’s widow, issued the following statement: “The world is now aware that my family and I were invited by the British Prime Minister David Cameron to 10 Downing Street earlier this week to hear his decision on the holding of an inquiry into the murder of my husband, Pat Finucane. Even now, days after the event, we still feel humiliated and insulted by the ordeal we were made to endure … We cannot be expected to take the British Prime Minister’s word that it will be effective when he is reneging on a Government commitment in order to establish it. His actions prove beyond doubt that the word of British Prime Minister is not to be trusted. The case of Pat Finucane shows that British Prime Ministers no longer keep their promises.” Geraldine Finucane has for over 20 years strived for justice and truth in the murder of her husband. Cameron’s actions and mistreatment of the Finucane family serve as a perfect example of why we still need to be cognizant of the issues that still affect the North of Ireland. Congratulations to Dan Dennehy for hosting such a wonderful, first-class fundraising event in Manhattan to support RFJ and the Christmas Appeal.

Dan Dennehy, Mike Glass, Mike Redmond, Colleen Reilly, Jere Cole, Clara Reilly and Sean Pender at the NYS FFAI 2012 Christmas Appeal Fundraiser held at Harbour Lights Restaurant. Dan Dennehy, NYS FFAI Chairman, reports that the NYS FFAI 2012 Christmas Appeal Fundraiser held at Harbour Lights Restaurant was a tremendous success. Cohosted by the Brehon Law Society of NY and with the dramatic views of the Manhattan skyline and the Brooklyn Bridge, the event was a lively evening of music provided by AOH members Sean Griffin and Stephen Gara, excellent food and guest speakers. Among those who presented a contemporary view of the issues in Northern Ireland were National Vice President Brendan Moore, National FFAI Sean Pender, Steve McCabe and General Jim Cullen of the Brehon Law Society. Many Hibernians, including Brian Kelly, NYS Director, Aidan O’Kelly Lynch, President of the AOH Peekskill participated in the event as well as National Director Jere Cole and Mike Carroll of the Brehon Law Society. The highlight was a moving speech by 2011 AOH Sean McBride Award winner Clara Reilly of Relatives for Justice, who was presented with a $2,000 check from the NYS Board as part of their Christmas Appeal Fundraiser proceeds. Dan Dennehy said, “The Brehons have helped make this event a complete success, and we are excited by the prospect of working with them on many more efforts and causes in the future.”

Moving? Notify the Financial Secretary of your Division! Send your new address and the mailing label from the front page of The Hibernian Digest to: Thomas McNabb 31 Logan Street Auburn, NY 13021-3925 National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

“How do you get away with writing what you do?” This was the question someone asked me in Philadelphia, as we gathered for the National Board meeting weekend, which was followed up by comments that things I had written in this paper were somehow radical or revolutionary. Inspired by the perception that I am a revolutionary, I am now going to attempt to write the most radical statement that I possibly can. The Creator of everything that exists, who continues to hold everything in existence, became part of His creation. Brothers and sisters, that is the most radical statement that can be made, yet many of us could glance right over those 18 words and not even pause at the period to soak it in; be honest with yourself, did that sentence cause you to

pause before you moved onto this one. While this may not seem like a radical statement to us, proof of which is that it may not have raised an eyebrow as we read it, it is a statement that separates two billion people, Christians, from four billion people, non-Christians. It is a statement that is considered heretical by about 18 million Jews and 1.5 billion Muslims, not to mention the great discomfort it gives to Jehovah Witnesses, who actually removed it from the Bible in order to support their “theology.” The Incarnation, as it is known by Christians, is central to our Faith; in fact no one can be considered a Christian who does not take as a central tenet of their belief that Jesus Christ is the Second Person of the Holy Trinity. Perhaps this is why many of us did not find my

earlier statement all that radical, as we have been raised on this belief since we were children. How is it that something as disturbing as God becoming a human being can cause revulsion in the hearts and minds of Jews, Muslims and JWs, but barely raise a stir in the hearts of those who profess to follow Him. It is the great statement from John (1:14) “And the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us,” that describes the taking on of our humanity by the One who created our humanity. God, who has existed before time itself, since He brought time into being, who has created the Universe and all it holds, but transcends the Universe, being present in every aspect of Creation, but not contained by it, allowed Himself to become a creature, a part of creation. That the Second Person of God, who is perfectly relational with the Father and the Holy Spirit, who is in fact Perfect in Himself, came among us out of Love is so often overlooked by all of us who have received this gift of Love Itself. This Incarnation,

which held the early Church Fathers in awe, gets passed over by those of us who will not take the time to recognize what has happened, and what it means. Now we come to the great question: what does the Incarnation mean to me in my life? How does the knowledge that God became a human being alter my view of the world and my view of those people around me? If you did not think that the statement: “The Creator of everything that exists, who continues to hold everything in existence, became part of His creation” was radical or revolutionary, you have not thought about it long enough. Only through His divinity has He redeemed us through taking on our humanity. As we celebrate the Incarnation, as we gather together with friends and family this Christmas Season, let’s take time to meditate, to reflect, upon the great gift we have been given. In the words of St. Methodius, “His compassion for us compelled Him, who cannot be compelled, to be born in a human body at Bethlehem.” Nollaig Shona Daoibh

Director’s Report by Len Byrne By the time you read this, the leaves will be changing up North and the weather cooling off down South. There are other changes that are beginning to occur and they don’t involve the weather. On January 1st our 2012 per capita dues will be due for payment. Our dues will change from $8 to $12 this year. The $4 increase was necessary to cover the rising expenses that have occurred over the last 20 years, the last time a dues increase took place. We hope to keep reminding all financial secretaries during the year of this increase. Our National Secretary Brother Tom McNabb is planning other reminders during the year in order to facilitate this move. Hopefully, it will be another 20 years before another increase will be required. I am in the process of gathering together the required reports at the request of our CPA’s and in order to file our 2010-2011 tax returns, which are due November 15, 2011. I don’t anticipate any problems. The National Board met in Philadelphia this past month in conjunction with our National President’s dinner. It was a very successful meeting wherein I thought we accomplished a great deal. One of the most important recent projects has been the Commodore John Barry Gate at the Naval Academy at Annapolis. This is one of the few National AOH “brick and mortar” projects that we have been involved in at such a prestigious location. The Gate is at one of the entrances to the Naval Academy. The fundraising for this event is progressing as anticipated and we are looking for all divisions in our noble order to participate in this endeavor. Hope that you all have a safe and happy Christmas holiday. God Bless.

State conventions and election of new officers in each state have been the focus of the last couple of months. North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida and Georgia all had conventions recently. Louisiana held their convention in the Summer. Much of the discussion at the conventions focused on expansion as well as retention. At times retention is more difficult than expansion. We don’t always take the time to find out why a Brother is missing meetings or not really participating in the various events. We need to do just as we would for a falling away Catholic and approach and find out the problems. Relative to expansion we need to get with the parish priests and educate them on the AOH. All too often in the South the only Catholic men’s organization that they are aware of is the Knights. In South Carolina, the new Major Degree Team (the only one in the South) conducted degrees for over 35 Brothers. Thanks to Patrick Shannon for his help. I’m pleased to advise that Georgia has been reenergized and I will be spending time with them as they move forward. Also, Texas is talking about as many as three new divisions and Alabama has added a new one. On a personal note, I thoroughly enjoyed the President’s Dinner and meeting. I will say the club visits did wear me out but it was fun and getting a chance to meet everyone was great. My congratulations go to Seamus for an outstanding tenure as National President.

Have you received a post card or a phone call? Harris Connect is sanctioned by the National Board to gather this information

It is hard to believe that December is here and the year is almost over. With the year’s end, we all have lots to do in our Divisions. By now your elections are over and your new officers are ready to begin their duties. Thanks to all retiring Division officers for your hard work during your terms of office. Remember to get in your election and per capita reports to your County, State and National secretaries. These forms will facilitate our efforts in providing the proper information to the right people in all jurisdictions. Keep sending in your Charities and Missions reports to me. Our Order needs to show our works on a national level. Please go to our website at and print out our forms for your charitable events. The reports are self-explanatory. Fill in all requested information and send to me. Remember to be sure that the donation you are reporting is, in fact, a charitable cause and not simply a donation. List the charity benefited in your report. Man-hours should only be reported when they are worked supporting a recognized charitable organization or event. Donations to the AOH National Board and Hibernian Charity managed funds such as FFAI, Project St. Patrick, National History Day, Hibernian Hunger, etc., are encouraged. Donations to scholarship funds are also acceptable. Iinform your local newspaper and your church bulletins of your good works. Have information on our Order readily available at your functions. Use these as an organizing tool to bring in new members. Please remember that in working to help those in need in your community, that no effort is too small. If you organize a function or make a donation in accordance with our guidelines, we want to hear from you. Any questions, call or email me at or (570) 323-7789. I want to wish all Beannachtai na Nollag daoibh. Slan. National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Brothers, we have contracted with Harris Connect to upgrade our email address list and do a history of the AOH by our own AOH members. You can write down your own personal history of your family or your Division, County or State, and have it published in this book. There is no charge for putting in the information. The company makes their money by selling the book when it is completed next spring. This is the first time we have ever written our own history by our own members and will be a keepsake for generations to come. Do it today. All the information is secured and will not be released to anyone except the National Board. — Seamus Boyle


It has been 15 months since the Cincinnati Convention and most of us wonder where the time has gone, as do I. It is an honor and privilege to serve my Hibernian brothers as the Chairman of Anti Defamation and National Director for the West. It has been 10 years since I was first elected as a National Director. In some ways there are the same issues today as then, but also things have changed in many ways. The way people communicate today is much different than 10 years ago. We have the print media, television with network programs, talk shows, the Internet and social media such as You Tube, Facebook and Twitter. With information being received much more quickly, it requires the National Board as an organization to disseminate information more quickly as well. This includes responses to those who choose to defame our religion and our Irish heritage. These slanders seem to persist more

often in the month of March, but they do occur each and every month of the year. It is our duty to be vigilant and to notify people and establishments that we do not appreciate the degrading of our Catholic faith or Irish ethnicity. These past several months I have had a great time meeting our Hibernian brothers and sisters throughout this country. It seemed that both Lois and I have been living out of suit cases, but we have loved every minute of our travels. I assisted in installing California’s state board officers at their convention and at Montana’s state convention installing their state board officers. Congratulations to Ken Jamieson, the newly elected State Board President of California, and Tom Pahut, who was reelected State Board President of Montana. I wish them the best in leading their respected states. In August I traveled to Pueblo, Colorado. Pueblo has a bit of AOH history. In 1884 there were two AOH Divisions in that city

I had the pleasure of being invited to dinner by several newly arrived Embassy staffers here in Washington. This dinner was also attended by former president Ned McGinley and Immigration Chair Dan Dennehy. With recent cutbacks in staffing at the Embassy, the responsibilities and workload of the newly arrived have increased. The dinner was enjoyable as we (on the AOH side) described the lay of the land in the U.S. Irish community as we know it and how happy we are to work in constructive ways with the Irish Government through their diplomatic corps. One area that the Embassy is involved with is Education Ireland (, an effort by Ireland to attract Irish Diaspora to obtain their college education in Ireland. The Embassy was pleased to hear about the AOH’s efforts over the years to support our own with Study Abroad Scholarships — grants of $1,000 per year. You should hear more about this from Bill Sullivan from MA in this edition. I encourage you to look into the possibility of having your children or grandchildren pursue higher education in Ireland. The tuition rates are very attractive compared with U.S. colleges and the experience for someone of Irish decent would be unmatched. I attended the National President’s Dinner in Philadelphia and the conclusion (perhaps) of the 175th Anniversary of the AOH in America celebration. I was honored to visit numerous AOH Halls, from Trenton, NJ, to some half dozen in Philly itself. It is nice to know you have AOH family at these Halls and that you are always welcome at these Halls no matter where in the country they are located. I was extremely impressed with Clara Reilly, our 2011 MacBride recipient. Her speech about her quest for truth and justice in Northern Ireland was awe-inspiring. Congratulations to her and to Sean Pender for his tenacity in getting her here. President Boyle’s gala was impressive and I was pleased that many of the attendees made generous donations in his name to the Commodore John Barry Memorial Project. I believe that more than $13,000 was raised at the dinner — what a fitting tribute to Seamus at his final President’s dinner. I was also proud that two members of the Virginia AOH received their Life Membership approval at the National Board meeting. My good friend and Living Legend Pat Troy will soon don the tri-color ribbon. Also receiving from Virginia was Jerry Gorman. I only recently met Brother Gorman at the VA State Convention. I regret that another Virginia Brother and long time Hibernian, John O’Neill Sr., was unable to receive the award; He passed away shortly before the meeting to vote. I attended the DC State Convention and am proud to say that the Commodore himself — Ralph Day — had been elected State president. I am happy to report that we also have three officers on board who are under 30. They are young and hard working and dedicated AOH members all. Stay tuned for exciting things coming from the DC State Board in the future. I also attended the Barry Memorial fundraiser in Annapolis organized by the Maryland Commodore Barry Division. A nice turnout by our MD brothers and a guest appearance of Ambassador Michael Collins and his wife, Marie, made for a grand evening in the state’s capital. The Beltway Bulldog, Jack O’Brien, was there working diligently (as always) — over $3,000 was raised. On a sad note, we lost a great Hibernian, former national Director Jim Herlihy from Arlington, VA. Jim was born in Ireland and very dedicated to the AOH in northern Virginia and Washington, DC. He passed away at the age of 91.


Bob Golden, left, Bill Featherston, Bob and Rose Manguso, Elizabeth Manguso, Kayla Caty, Herman and Michele Cata, Mike O’Connor, Devon Cata at the history award presentation in Pueblo, Colorado.

and the cathedral today has a stained glass window sponsored by the AOH. My trip to Pueblo was to make formal presentations to Kayla Cata and Elizabeth Manguso, two young ladies from Pueblo who won the top award for the National History Day. If Elizabeth and Kayla are any indication of the caliber of youth today, then we have nothing to worry about in our future. While in Colorado we also attended the Lady of Knock Mass and LAOH picnic in Denver. The LAOH of Denver sponsored it. Our brother and sister Hibernians in Denver are wonderful hosts.

October was the AOH National President’s Dinner in Philadelphia. A big thank you goes out to Co-Chairpersons Nancy Cullen and Ed Dougherty for all their hard work in putting on such a wonderful function. The tours of the AOH Halls were a special treat. It was great to see the pride each member had for the history of their hall. The one concern I continue to have is the isolated AOH divisions and how do we as a National organization support them and assure them they are as important to us as any other member of this organization.

Jack O’Brien, Mrs. Collins and Ambassador Michael Collins at the Annapolis fundraiser.

If you have not heard, Certificates of Irish Heritage are now available for AOH members and all individuals of Irish decent. This is a new and important way in which the Irish Government wishes to acknowledge and appreciate the strong and enduring connection to Ireland felt by millions of people around the world. Certificate designs take their inspiration from our history and our land and provide the backdrop to a wonderful expression of Irish heritage and the legacy of Irish ancestors. For further information and details of how to apply, please go to Please feel free to contact me if you are coming to DC anytime soon -

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

The National President’s Testimonial Dinner in Philadelphia on Oct 8 was a memorable event. Meeting Clara Reilly, first woman recipient of the MacBride Award, was an honor – especially to this historian who has followed the time and troubles through which she has lived. Special thanks to all for the compliments on 175 Years of Fidelity, the illustrated history of the AOH prepared by this office for the 175th Anniversary of the Order. It was a year in the research and writing and revealed some remarkable facts about our origins as well as containing some rare photos, but I never expected the book to be as well received as it was. I apologize to all who wanted another copy for a local library or archive when we ran out. However, the National Board has agreed to a limited reprint and is making another 50 available, at $20. each, on a first-come basis with delivery promised before Christmas. See the ad on this page. As far back as March, May and July, 2010 we invited all jurisdictions to sponsor a page on the history of the AOH in

their area to complement the overall History of the Order. Thanks to those who did for your stories are inspiring and show the extent to which the AOH has seeded this nation. However, some ignored the appeal and some of those were ones who whine the loudest when their submissions don’t appear in the Hibernian Digest. While today’s events are significant today, the Irish immigrants who came before us, many of whom walked across this land with little more than the clothes on their backs and a handful of tools, brought the Catholic Church and the AOH from coast to coast as they built this great nation and they deserve to be remembered. More importantly, they deserve to be introduced to our grandchildren by us recording their deeds. Therefore, after consulting with the National Board, the Office of National Historian is officially directing all jurisdictions (State, County and Division) to appoint, at the next election of officers, a Historian who will commit to compile as much of the history of that jurisdiction as

is known and forward it to the National Historian’s Office by the end of one year. We can accept the information in any form, but would prefer digital files e-mailed to us at AOHBARD@OPTONLINE.NET. If there are any questions, call (631) 732-1390 and let’s make 2012 The Year of the Historian. If by January, 2013, no information is received, the name of the delinquent jurisdiction will be published and an appeal made to any member of that jurisdiction to provide the information. The providing member will then be publicly credited with having provided the information and given a byline in the archives. Many have said that they didn’t realize the request was for all jurisdictions while some said they assumed we already had the information. Not so! This offer is being made one final time so that everyone can have the opportunity to show future researchers that the AOH with its benevolence and organizational ability was truly one of the building blocks on which America was established. Its your heritage – PROMOTE IT! Mercier Press is publishing a new book by author Pearse Lawlor entitled The Outrages, 1920 - 1922 which gives an account of the major incidents, now slipping from local memory, in Ireland’s War of Independence along the border counties. The many lives lost in each border

county are chronicled with factual accounts of attacks and reprisals, the impact these events had in Westminster and how Churchill, Craig and Collins reacted. Included are the events leading to the creation of the Ulster Special Constabulary’s ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ Specials and an in-depth account of the shooting of ‘B’ Specials at Clones railway station, the killing of eight unionists in a single night in south Armagh, the cover-up after ‘A’ Specials left three innocent nationalists dead and two wounded in Cushendall, and the litany of reprisal killings from Camlough to Desertmartin. It includes details of attacks on the Great Northern Railway and other networks, not previously published, that provide a unique insight into the problems faced by railwaymen and by the government during the period. It is clear that the worst of all groups, including the Black and Tans and Auxiliaries, were the Ulster Special Constabulary ‘B’ specials, who left all others in the dust when it came to murder and mayhem. Lawlor covers the pogroms against Catholics in at least three major towns led by off-duty ‘B’ Specials. Kudos to Lawlor for documenting an important part of our history before it is lost to memory. We know there are no choir boys in war; this book makes that fact even clearer.

N OW A V A IL A BL E Looking Forward While Remembering the Past Although our official New Year begins in January, September always seems to be the “unofficial” beginning of a new season. Fresh from a summer hiatus, activities begin again. School starts up for the kids. Clubs and organizations begin to meet. The cool autumn air is crisp and clean. September even feels like the best time of year for a fresh start. Although there is a sense of freshness in the air, the importance of history still remains. As we look forward to a new season in the Ancient Order of Hibernians, let’s take time to remember back to our roots and the cornerstones on which our Order is founded: Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity. This is the motto of the Ancient Order of Hibernians. These three characteristics are more than just words. They have profound meaning attached to them. This is the core, the essence, of the Ancient Order of Hibernians. The motto Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity has a strong and proud history as the foundation of our organization. The Ancient Order of Hibernians was founded in New York City on May 4, 1836, but it can trace its roots back to a parent organization which had existed in Ireland for over 300 years. The organization evolved in the early 1600’s to protect the lives of priests as well as to aid and comfort the Irish people by whatever means available. Similarly, the Ancient Order of Hibernians in America was founded to protect the clergy and to help Irish Immigrants fleeing famine issues in Ireland in the late 1840’s. Today, the Order continues to be committed to its motto of Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity. We do this through a variety of ways. We provide aid to the newly arrived Irish. We foster and preserve Irish culture — art, dance, music and sports. We advocate for issues concerning the Irish. Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity. In all of our actions, in all of our pursuits, these are the three elements that we ultimately want to encourage and inspire. As we look forward to a new season, let’s remember our heritage. As we remember back, let’s take stock of our current role in promoting our motto. As a community, think about the following questions: ✓ What is your division currently doing to encourage friendship, unity and Christian charity among your members and within your communities? ✓ What are ways that your division can strengthen its commitment to friendship, unity and Christian charity this coming year? ✓ Does your personal commitment to friendship, unity and Christian charity extend outside your division into your daily life? As Hibernians, our tradition is to build friendship, to promote unity and to practice Christian charity in all aspects of our lives. As we start this new season, let’s keep this tradition strong and growing!

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

“This is a Scholarly work” Phil Gallagher State Historian, Connecticut

“This tells the story like nothing else” Dr. David Ring Co. Historian, Suffolk, N.Y




Hope everyone had a good festival season. Ours in Nassau County, NY, was a complete success and I hope yours was, too. We are approaching the end of the year when elections come up for many divisions. With new officers come new appointments and one of them of course would be the Webmaster — or Internet Communications — post. In 2012, the Internet Communications Chairman is more important than ever. The lifeblood of the Order is not just new members, but younger members, ones who will grab the reigns and carry the mantle of the AOH for the next 20 years. And since younger members all use computers in one form or another, having a web-savvy person running your division site is important. These days most people go to the web to find out information about a particular organization. If someone hears about the AOH the first time, they will probably Google the Order to find out more. This is where having a solid website comes in. It is your calling card and needs to be designed well and maintained. The right webmaster needs to be a special person, one who knows how to design and run the website, while maintaining the cutting edge of new technologies. So if you are an incoming president, my recommendation is to census your members to find that right person. If you have one, then great, run with the ball. But don’t go cheap on the site. Spend the money to get the right hosting, right software, and right design. This is going to be your calling card, and if your site looks like it’s designed by an amateur, the reaction to the site won’t be what you want it to be. Also, make sure the person has the time to work with the site. If they take the job and do nothing, it’s not helping the division. Everyone in the Order wants each division to succeed. Finding the right Internet Communications person is a step in the right direction.

Last chance to… CELEBRATE LE B R RA ATE

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explaining the iconic sym bols with a certificate of authenticity explaining symbols For the Introductory Price of only $30. (includes S&H) Available to members members only with the attached form Available form:: -

Social Networking and Hibernian Divisions Regardless of computer experience or expertise most people in the U.S. are well aware of social networking online. This can be a key to continued success and growth of the AOH and I am happy to report several Hibernians are making the most of it today. Please take the time to find someone to bring your division into the electronic age. If you are already in the electronic age, congratulations for leading the way and setting higher standards. Create your division Facebook page and web page to allow communications among your members on many Irish American issues. Visit the Commodore John Barry page to see how our fundraising for the Barry Gate is going, or sign up for the AOH PEC page to receive regular updates from our PEC committee, or visit the 2011 Bloody Sunday Trip to learn about past tours as well as the upcoming FFAI tour in January 2012. Simply search AOH or Ancient Order of Hibernians on Facebook to get great ideas and to meet Hibernians from around the country as well as around the world. The second most important item when creating a Facebook page and especially a web page is to keep it up to date. Lack of effort on the part of your Facebook administrator or webmaster can create a lack of interest in your site. The nice thing about Facebook is that, once created, all members can post items to keep it going, including numerous photos. Use electronic tools to help notify all the friends of your division about upcoming events and meetings. A Facebook page and web page are great complements to newsletters and call-posts for little or no expense. Calling All Junior Divisions As we begin to see a growth in college divisions, I get more and more questions about Junior Divisions. National Vice President Brendan Moore and I have recently updated the forms used in Junior Divisions and we are beginning to compile an accurate contact list of the Junior Divisions. I am asking that each Junior Division send me your contact information, including your parent division and contact for that division. We will be contacting you in turn to help us update the best way to grow and sustain Junior Divisions around the country. Additionally, we want every Junior division to send in articles to the Hibernians Digest sharing with us your success stories. AOH Division/Sponsor Business Cards On several occasions I have mentioned the concept of business cards each division can use, having the member place his name, telephone number and email address on the back. Brother Patrick O’Brian, president of St. Patrick Division 4, North Hills, Pittsburgh, has been using just such a card for their division. Their Division Business Card has a four color front with a black & white back that includes a watermark of the logo. These cards are available from with pricing at $102 for 5,000 and $59 for 1,000 as well as several other combinations. What is great about the St. Patrick Division 4 card is the sponsoring member on the back. If you would like to use this card for you division, go to, login using my email address and the password aohcards. Once you login, go to my portfolio where you will see the business card template. Simply change the text on the front to meet the needs of your division, follow the instructions and place your order. Please make sure every member carries these cards with them as we all work to recruit one new member each year. Remember, we need you to recruit a new member today and at least one annually for the AOH to remain the largest Irish Catholic organization in the United States. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if I can be of any assistance to you or your division: or (330) 518-4450. In closing, I am happy to report that we will have a recruiting video out to the membership sometime around the first of the year. This will also include a Project St. Patrick video and an FFAI video that we will ask you to show during your division meeting at the appropriate time of the year. If space allows, we will also include the various forms used annually, including the up-to-date application and the four-color brochure. Remember, contact me with you local division information and we can get you a customized electronic brochure. Thank you and God Bless.

Please send ______ copies of the AOH Anniversary Medallion to Name ______________________________________________ Division ____________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ City _______________________________________________ State/Zip ___________________________________________ Enclose check made out to: AOH Medallion and send to Medallion c/o Jere E. Cole 54 Woodledge Court Rockaway, NJ 07866-2245 8


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954-426-3514 Deadline for St. Patrick’s Day Sashes 2/14/12

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Jim J. Herlihy – Former AOH National Director, passed away at the age of 91 on October 13, 2011. Born in Skibbereen, Co. Cork, Ireland, and, of late, from Arlington, VA. Beloved husband of the late Hannah Marie Herlihy; loving father of Marian Goicoechea, Betty Thompson, Eileen Massumi, Colleen Herlihy, Erin Painter and Dan Herlihy; twin brother of Helen Marie Harnedy. He is also survived by 10 grandchildren and one great-grandson. Jim was the founder of the John Fitzgerald Division in Arlington, Virginia – one of the first divisions in the State. He was very involved in the Washington, D.C. St. Patrick’s Day parade and numerous Irish events and causes in the Nation’s Capital. A Mass of Christian burial was held at St. Agnes Catholic Church in Arlington with many members of the AOH partaking in the AOH wake service and the Litany of Saints. Richard Frederick “Foz” Ryan, age 80, of IL, born O’Fallon, December 7, 1930 in East St. Louis, IL, passed away October 10, 2011, at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Belleville, Ill. Foz grew up in East St. Louis and he enlisted in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. Following his discharge, he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education from Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville, Illinois (SIU-E). He began his tenure in 1960 at Assumption High School, in East St. Louis, where he taught and coached for more than a decade. In the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Foz was the Illinois State President from 20052007, and was deemed the Hibernian of the Year and was one of the Past Presidents of Michael P. Keeley Division 1 St. Clair County, Illinois, where until his passing he held the position of Standing Committee Chairman. As a loyal Hibernian, Foz spearheaded the first St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Belleville and was instrumental in establishing and promoting many of our major fund-raising events. A few of the more prominent ones are The Top of the Morning Run and The Irish Open Golf Tournament. He initiated the Columbus Day Kids’ Run in O’Fallon, and the Knights of Columbus Turkey Trot to benefit Area 12 Special Olympics. Foz supported the Area 12 Special Olympics for more than 30 years, and served as a board member from 19851990. Foz was a member of the Knights of Columbus Council 4239 in which he served in the Fourth Degree and as a past Grand Knight. Foz was honored by the City of O’Fallon and St. Clair County, as July 5, 2011, was declared “Foz Ryan Day” in honor of his service to the community. In 2001, Foz was awarded the Christian Service Award by the Belleville Diocese for his efforts in supporting children and young adults with economic disadvantages and/or disabilities. He was preceded in death by his wife, Shirley Ann, nee Oppermann, Ryan. Surviving are his three children, Theresa (Ron) Rasp of O’Fallon, Timothy (Michelle) Ryan of Shiloh, and Patrick (Karla) Ryan of O’Fallon; grandchildren, Matthew and

In Memoriam Clara Obernuefemann, Connor, Daniel, and Meghan Ryan, and Madelyn, Mackenzie, and Jonathan Ryan; and his half-sister, Sharon (Thomas) McGlasson of Ft Worth, Tex. Past Illinois State P. President Michael Keeley, Jr., 79, of Belleville, IL, died on September 19, 2011 at his residence. Michael was the past president and owner of Keeley Brothers Contracting Company in East St. Louis, IL. He served in the United States Navy after being commissioned from the NROTC. He was a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Michael P. Keeley, Sr. Division I, St. Clair County, and past State Secretary of the A.O.H. He was also a member of the Knights of Columbus Council #592 and American Legion Post 2007, Swansea, IL. Michael was a member and past president of the Southern Illinois Contractors Association. He maintained membership in the Southern Illinois Builders Association and chaired the Equal Employment Opportunity committee. He was a member of Local 520 Operating Engineers Health, Welfare and Pension fund as a trustee and Michael was the general chairman of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee in St. Louis, MO. Michael is survived by his wife, Joan, nee Becherer, Keeley; his children, Mary Agnes Sanders (fiancé, Dave Bukk), Ann (Phil) Green and Walsh (Rachael) Keeley; his grandchildren, Kate (Lukas) Schmid, Clayton Sanders and Elizabeth, Andrew, Clare, Mary C., Grace Green and Seamus, Brigid, Liam Keeley and many cousins, nieces and nephews. William C. Monaghan of North Wildwood, N.J., member of AOH Division 1 Cape May County and formally from AOH Division 39 Philadelphia, Union Carpenter Local 1856, passed away suddenly on October 23 at the age of 67. 1st Lt. U.S. Army, Vietnam Veteran, recipient of three Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star and Silver Star, he served his country and his community with pride and dedication. He is survived by his loving wife, Patricia (nee Maguire), children William (Donna) James, Kevin, Megan and the late Michael S Monaghan, Joy Strehle (William) Kathleen, Joseph and Kevin Aikens, also survived by nine grandchildren. Bill was an altar server and served mass at St Ann’s the morning of his death. Will be sadly missed by his family, friends and AOH/LAOH members. Mary C. (Buckley) Nyhan, 96, a life-long resident of Lawrence, MA, passed on October 21, 2011, at the Holy Family Hospital in Methuen surrounded by her loving family. She was born on December 20, 1914, in Lawrence, to the late John J. and Julia Mary (Cronin) Buckley. Mary was educated in Saint Patrick’s grammar school and was a graduate of the Saint Patrick’s High School. She was an attendant of Saint Patrick’s Church in Lawrence, she was a member of Our Lady’s Sodality of Saint Patrick’s, and was a National Life Member of the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians, Division 8.

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Mary was also a member of the Bon Secours Guild and the Saint Claire’s Society. Mary worked at the Bon Secours Hospital as the secretary for the outpatient clinic for 17 years until her retirement. She enjoyed and was proud of her Irish heritage, loved Irish music and Irish dancing. Mary enjoyed taking trips to Ireland to visit her family. She especially loved to follow her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren in their expertise in Irish dancing in which she took great pride. According to Mary’s family, she loved the beach and swimming, crossword puzzles, sudoku and politics. Later in life she took an interest in following sports, she was a multiple Boston sports fan. She especially took great pride and loved to spend time with her family. She would attend every ball game, wedding, graduation and just plain taking time to know each and every one of her family members, right down to the little ones. It was her life. Mary was the wife of the late Charles F. Nyhan who passed in 2007. Her family members include: Daughter: Sheila Marie Nyhan of Del Ray Beach Florida. Son: Charles “Chuck” F. Nyhan, Jr. of Truro, Cape Cod and of Del Ray Beach Florida. Daughter: Mary Ellen and her husband Donald J. Pelletier of Lawrence, MA. Son: John B. and his wife Pamela (Shattuck) Nyhan of Hampton, NH. Daughter: AnneMarie Nyhan-Doherty and her husband Timothy J. Doherty of Lawrence, MA. Grandchildren: Donald and his wife Chloe Pelletier, Julie and her husband Robert Fiore, John Michael and his wife Colleen Pelletier, Michael Hall, Kristen and her husband Richard Doherty, Jonathan Nyhan, Christina and her husband Taylor Edler, Brian Doherty, Erin Doherty, and Scott Doherty. Great Grandchildren: Emilie, Gianna, Isabella, Jake, Benjamin, Lauren, and Ryan. Her sister: Sr. Marion Bernard (Hannah) Buckley, S.C. Sister-in-law: Jean Buckley of Lawrence, MA Brother-in-law: Joseph D. Nyhan of Del Ray Beach, FL As well as several nieces and nephews, great nieces and nephews. Mary was predeceased by her siblings Corneilus Buckley, John J. Buckley, former Mayor, Michael Buckley, Sr. Sheila Marie (Eileen) Buckley, SC, Timothy Buckley and Daniel Buckley. The Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians held services at the Funeral Home. Charter member of St. Patrick Division 1 Somerset County NJ, Bernard J. Sloan, — “Barney” to his countless friends — died on September 15 at his home in Somerville, NJ, after a valiant fight against cancer. A Mass of Christian Burial, presided over by AOH member Monsignor Seamus Brennan, was celebrated at the Immaculate Conception Church in Somerville. The large attendance included a guard of honor of fellow members from the Division. Barney was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and was so very proud of that. He later became a resident of Somerville for 50 years. He was the manager of Port Newark Marine Terminals for the Port Authority of NY/NJ, retiring after a 40-year career. A Navy veteran of World War II, he served in the Philippines during their liberation. He received his BS and MBA from New York

University. His beloved wife, LAOH sister Helen (Callaghan) Sloan, predeceased him in 2008. Barney was an Irish Catholic through and through and a steadfast parishioner of the Immaculate Conception Church in Somerville. He was a charter member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in Somerville, where he once served as the grand marshal for the AOH parade. Largely due to his untiring efforts, the work of hundreds of unnamed Irishmen in building the Delaware and Raritan canal was properly recognized by the Delaware and Raritan Canal Commission and a memorial gravestone was erected at Griggstown Cemetery. He was also a life member of the Somerville Elks and the Knights of Columbus and devoted many hours to various charitable organizations and community events. Barney had many, many friends and was well-known for his wit and generosity.

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Bhí deis agam tamall ó shin bualadh le daoine deasa in Astoria ag teach tábhairne darb ainm Lavelle’s. I had a chance to meet some nice people a while ago at the Daoine as an nGaeltacht roinnt díobh, agus a sleachta na daoine eile. Gaeltacht people and their children. Thaispeáin mé cóipeanna den irisleabhar An Gael dóibh. I showed them copies of An Gael. Foilsítear An Gael sna Stáit, as Gaeilge amháin (is mise an t-eagarthóir – féach An Gael is published in Irish only in the States (I’m the editor). Bhí siad an-sásta leis. They liked it a lot. Ach dúirt duine liom nach léann sé mórán as Gaeilge níos mó, mar níl sé cleachta leis an gcló Rómhánach ná an litriú caighdeánach. But one person told me he doesn’t read a lot in Irish any more, since he’s not familiar with the Roman type and standardized spelling. Thaispeáin mé dó go mbíonn ábhar sa seanchló ar chúl na hirise, agus bhí sé sásta leis sin. I showed him that there’s always material in the old type in the back of the magazine, and he was pleased with that. Ach is iomaí duine cosúil leisean atá ann, agus ba mhaith liom cúpla focal a scríobh faoin gcló nua agus an caighdeán oifigiúil. But there are lots of people like him, and I would like to write a few words about the new type and the official standard. (Tá alt maith ar an ábhar seo ar fáil ar vicipéid – sin wikipedia as Gaeilge: Is léir nach raibh cló ag aon teanga go dtí timpeall

500 bliain ó shin, mar ní bhíodh ann ach lámhscríbhinn. Clearly no language had print until around 500 years ago, as they just had hand written manuscripts. Bhíodh a nósanna féin ag tíortha éagsúla chun a dteangacha féin a scríobh. Each country had its own ways of writing their languages. Nuair a thosaigh tíortha chun leabhair a chur i gcló, roghnaigh cúpla tír a gcló féin a úsáid, a bhí cosúil le nósanna na lámhscríbhinne a bhíodh acu. When countries first started printing books, a few chose to use their own type, which resembled the way they wrote those manuscripts. Bhí an Fraktur sa Ghearmáin, agus an cló Gaelach in Éirinn. Germany had… and Ireland had the Gaelic type. Roghnaigh Éilís a hAon an cló Gaelach a cuireadh i bhfeidhm, mar a tharlaíonn. Elizabeth I chose to use the Gaelic type, as it happens. Ach tá sé bunaithe ar sheantraidisiún na lámhscríbhinne in Éirinn. But it is based on the writing in traditional Irish manuscripts. Ar ball, d’iompaigh beagnach gach tír i dtreo an chló Rómhánaigh, mar bhí sé ní ba shaoire chun an cló sin a cheannach agus a úsáid, agus tá sé níos simplí le léamh. Eventually, almost every country turned in the direction of the Roman type, because it was cheaper to buy and use, and was easier to read. Ní raibh ríomhairí ann, ach clóphreasanna agus clóscríobháin. There were no computers, but rather printing presses and typewriters. Ní raibh sé éasca cló Gaelach a fháil chucu sin. It wasn’t easy to

get the Gaelic type for them. Nuair a chéad fhoilsíodh An Gael (An Gaodhal) sa naoú haois déag, níorbh fhéidir an iris ina hiomlán a dhéanamh as Gaeilge, mar ní raibh a ndóthain litreacha as an gcló Gaelach acu, mar shampla. When An Gael was first published in the 19th century, it couldn’t be all in Irish, because they didn’t have enough Gaelic letters, as an example. Bhí sé de rún ag rialtas na hÉireann chomh fada siar leis na fichidí aistriú ón gcló Gaelach go dtí an cló Rómhánach. The Irish government intended to convert from the Gaelic type to the Roman as far back as the twenties. Ach bhí sé sin an-chonspóideach. But that was very controversial. Bhí na múinteoirí ina éadan go háirithe, mar bhíodh na leabhair scoile go léir sa seanchló. The teachers were especially against it, since all the school books were in the old type. Níor éirigh leis an rialtas cúrsaí a athrú go huile is go hiomlán go dtí 1963! The government didn’t succeed completely until... Mar sin, is iomaí duine atá againn fós atá níos compordaí leis an gcló Gaelach. So we still have a lot of people who are more comfortable with the Gaelic type. Níorbh é sin an t-aon rud a athraíodh, dar ndóigh. This wasn’t the only thing changed, of course. Rinneadh caighdeánú (is simpliú) ar litriú (agus ar ghramadach) na Gaeilge, freisin. They standardized (and simplified) the spelling (and grammar) of Irish, too. Bíonn gá le caighdeánú i dteanga ar bith, ionas go mbeidh gach duine i ngach áit ábalta an rud céanna a léamh, agus ionas go mbeidh córas amháin in úsáid sna scoileanna. All languages need standardization, so everyone everywhere can read the same thing, and so there will be one system in the schools. Tá cúrsaí casta sa Ghaeilge mar gur teanga bheag í, agus

níor mhaith le héinne nósanna na gcainteoirí dúchasacha a chailleadh. Things are complicated with Irish, because it’s a small language, and no one wants to lose the native ways of speaking. Mar sin, de ghnáth, ní bhacann na cainteoirí is fearr leis an gcaighdeán, cé go bhfoghlaimíonn beagnach gach foghlaimeoir é. So, usually, the best speakers don’t bother with the standard, even though almost all learners learn it. Tuigimid a chéile, ach is iomaí saghas Gaeilge atá ann fós. We understand each other, but there are still lots of varieties of Irish. Rinneadh iarracht chun gnéithe na gcanúintí go léir a snaidhm le chéile sa chaighdeán, agus mar sin, níl aon chainteoir dúchasach sásta leis. They tried to weave together traits of all the dialects in the standard, and so no native speaker is satisfied with it. Ní teanga nádúrtha atá ann sa chaighdeán. The standard is not a natural language. Ach is amhlaidh i dteanga ar bith. But that’s the way any language is. Bíonn difear ann idir teanga oifigiúil scríofa agus teanga an tí. There’s always a difference between the official written language and language at home. Ní mór don uile dhuine an dá nós a fhoghlaim, chun a bheith dea-oilte. Everyone needs to learn both ways of speaking, to be well educated. An ndéanann sé dochar do na canúintí? Does it hurt the dialects? Ní dóigh liom. I don’t think so. Ach ní bhíonn aon teanga socraithe go deo – bíonn an fás is an tathrú ann. But no language is settled for ever – there’s always growth and change. Is fiú d’aon duine an iarracht a dhéanamh chun gach saghas Gaeilge a thuiscint. It’s worth it for anyone to try to understand every kind of Irish. Níl sé chomh deacair sin! It’s not that hard!

Legal Report by George Clough A couple of unrelated items this month. For starters, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently announced the expansion of the Traumatic Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance (TSGLI) program to include injuries to service members and veterans received outside of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF). Under the original TSGLI law, it was made retroactive by Congress to October 7, 2001, for those qualifying service men and women who suffered injuries in the combat zones of OIF and OEF. In 2010, Public Law 111-275 removed the OIF/OEF requirement. Therefore, TSGLI coverage is now provided retroactively for those men and women who incurred qualifying severe injuries or illnesses between October 7, 2001 and November 30, 2005, regardless of where the injury occurred and whether or not they had Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance coverage at the time of the injury or illness. TSGLI covers a wide range of injuries and losses, including amputations; limb salvage; paralysis; burns; loss of sight, hearing or speech; facial reconstruction; and certain traumatic brain or other traumatic injuries. If you or anyone you know falls into this category, claims can now be submitted, which will be payable starting October 1, 2011. From time to time, items are passed around the Internet on the origins of certain military customs. A few months ago I reported on the origin of Taps. The following on the Origin of the 21-gun salute comes from the Arlington National Cemetery web page. The tradition of saluting goes back to the Middle Ages. By placing yourself in an unarmed position, you have placed yourself in the power of the ones being honored. Thus, the cannon salute might have originated in the 17th century with the maritime practice of demanding that a defeated enemy expend its ammunition and render itself helpless until reloaded – a time consuming operation in that era. In the Anglo-Saxon Empire, seven guns was a recognized naval salute, seven being the standard number of weapons on a vessel. Because more gunpowder could be stored on dry land, forts could fire three rounds for every one fired from sea, hence the number 21. With the improvement of naval gunpowder, honors rendered at sea were increased to 21 as well. Beginning in our colonial period, the United States fired one shot for every state in the Union. This was continued until 1841 when it was reduced to 21 from 26. Although it had been in use for more than 30 years, the 21-gun salute was not formally adopted until August 18, 1875. This was at the suggestion of the British, who proposed a “Gun for Gun Return” to their own 21-gun salute. So now you know! Finally, please remember to thank a vet or an active duty soldier, sailor, airman or Marine. They are a constant reminder that our cherished freedom is not free.


Since the introduction of the new AOH membership application, I have had a few questions about the requirements for membership. Article IV Section 1 of the National Constitution, letter “C”, reads: “Be a practicing Catholic”. The “Roman” has been removed. It was done to make sure that anyone otherwise eligible who belongs to one of the Churches in Communion with the Church of Rome with the Holy Father as supreme Pontiff is eligible for membership. There are about 24 different Rites in the Catholic Church. Also, letter “F”, of the same Section of Article IV reads: “Adopted legally by those of Irish ancestry”. Thus an adopted son of

a person who was otherwise eligible is now eligible if he meets the other qualifications for membership. I hope this answers the questions regarding the new application for membership. If there still are questions, I’d be happy to answer them. BookoDays

Articles for the January-February 2012 edition are due no later than December 17, 2011 National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

From the Editor… by John C. O’Connell I hope you enjoy this end-of-year issue of the Digest. I think it’s important to note that more than 90 AOH and LAOH members contributed the contents of this edition. And who knows how many other brother and sister Hibernians helped them produce that copy and take and caption the photos on these pages. It’s understandable, but wrong, to think that the newspapers and books we read, the shows we watch, the websites we visit, are things, somehow automatically produced, disembodied from the minds and hearts that informed their creation. Don’t

we often refer to a newspaper article by saying “The New York Times wrote…”? We forget that some person actually wrote the story, is responsible for the research and reporting, took the time to craft the article, choose the right words, go over it and over it until it’s just right. It’s the same with all the projects Hibernians take on and accomplish. Whether it’s the Barry Gate, Project St. Patrick, the 175th Anniversary Celebration, the 175th Commemorative Coin, the actions taken on immigration, freedom for political prisoners, and the hundreds of state, county and division charities and missions activities the Order engages in, the achievements aren’t automatic. Whatever gets done is accomplished by at least one and more typically a group of Hibernians acting in friendship and unity to perform acts of Christian Charity and other works of the Order. And why? Because those who take on

The past few months have been a flurry of activity regarding immigration. The AOH has always formed the basis of Irish-American support for positive legislation and adjudication on Irish issues and Immigration is no exception. The AOH Preamble states that the purpose of the AOH is “to encourage an equitable U.S. Immigration law for Ireland, and cooperate with all groups for a fair American immigration policy. “ Starting with the National Board’s diplomatic meeting with the Irish Ambassador Michael Collins and his staff, President Boyle continues to make resolution to Irish immigration reform and Thar Saile top priorities for this Board. The cooperation we have received from fellow Hibernians and National Board members to these ends is gratifying. National PEC Chair Ned McGinley and I joined Bruce Morrison (ILIR lobbyist), Stella O’Leary (Irish American Democrats) and Ciaran Staunton (ILIR) at a meeting in the West Wing of the White House. We let the White House know the Irish have done much to aid the war on terror and Homeland Security with the Shannon Stopover and U.S. customs and immigration enhancements at Irish airports should not go unrewarded. The Irish have long been ignored in the dialog in the national debate on immigration as focus and often anger is directed at all immigrants due to the issues at the U.S. southern border. The need for the E3 visa creating future flow of over 10,500 visas annually and methods to resolve the plight of the Irish undocumented were discussed with representatives of the White House and Homeland Security. In a recent conversation with Bruce Morrison, he described a focal point of the Irish E3 argument; creating “a culture of compliance” to immigration laws by those who desire to live and work in the U.S. combined with a fair, renewable quota of visas for participating nations. An amended E3 would provide a legal channel with indefinite renewal for Irish applicants and their spouses. He is also seeking an admissibility waiver to waive the 10year bar for overstaying in the U.S. for applicants. This aspect, admittedly, proves to be a difficult sell but would clear the way for undocumented Irish to apply for the E3. Janet Napolitano and the White House recently unveiled their strategies for immigration reform. Should these policies be adopted the undocumented Irish would be included and allowed to live and work in the U.S. regardless of how they entered the country. We will follow these initiatives closely. An Tánaiste Eammon Gilmore and a delegation of Irish Department of Foreign Affairs leadership, including Ambassador Michael Collins and Secretary General David Cooney, came to N.Y. recently for the U.N. General Assembly. As part of the Minister’s visit, a reception in the N.Y. Irish Consulate and meetings with the Coalition of Irish Immigration Centers led by CIIC President Siobhan Dennehy (LAOH Division 18 Peekskill) and the ILIR, were held. On Sunday, as part of a visit to the Bronx office of the Emerald Isle Immigration Center, EIIC Chairman Brian O’Dwyer, Mike Carroll (Brehon Law Society) and I met with An Tánaiste Gilmore and N.Y. Consul General Noel Kilkenny for a frank and productive dialog on Irish immigration initiatives and goals. A follow-up meeting with Irish Embassy officials where Ned and I were joined by National Director Keith Carney and met with two recently arrived, leading Irish Embassy officials. At that meeting, we reiterated that the AOH will support legislation that includes a permanent solution for future flow for Irish immigrants as well as a solution for the Irish undocumented. There can be no doubt that our voice is being heard on our immigration concerns. Thar Saile invited Sean Pender (National FFAI) and I to a meeting with Irish Consul General Gerry Staunton and to attend Thar Saile’s annual meeting. At these two very productive sessions, Sean and I were able to underline the AOH’s support for Thar Saile and recent developments on the cases will prove that our work was both timely and necessary. Matt Morrison, Thar Saile President, unable to attend his engagement as a speaker at the NYS FFAI Christmas Appeal fundraiser on October 13 at Harbour Lights Restaurant, credited the presence of two AOH National Board members, Sean Pender and myself, as key ingredients for the success of the two meetings. He sent a message to attendees at the

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

the tasks believe in the Order and its good and welfare and want to build the Order up, strengthen it, expand it, and help it achieve its missions. With this in mind, officers should remember that there may be many members at our meetings and events who are ready, willing and able to work. One of our goals as leaders should be to identify those members and figure out what we can ask them to do for the Order. Then we guide them and follow up on how they’re doing. This is how new leaders are developed. Don’t be afraid to ask someone who isn’t doing anything now to do something. No one joined the Order to sit in a meeting room once a month, right? Many are waiting to be pressed into service. On a different matter: I’d appreciate your suggestions for how the Digest can be improved. What’s not here that you think ought to be? What’s here that you don’t like so much? What could make this better? Let

me know at EditorHibernianDigest@ Also, if you know of an Irish store in your community that does business online as well as locally, that you think may want to advertise in the Digest, where they could promote their products to so many IrishAmerican men and women, please ask them to contact me at EditorHibernian or send me their name and address and I’ll contact them. We need more ads in the Digest! And while I’m on the subject of advertising, if you have sales experience and would like to help me get ads, I could use some help. Write to me and let me know if you can assist the Order in that way. There are great articles and reports in this issue. I hope you enjoy them all. The deadline for the next issue is December 17. A very Merry and Holy Christmas to all!

National Board meeting and the NYS AOH fundraiser that much progress has been made in getting his work and travel permissions sorted. I am grateful when members who make me aware of Irish immigrants in distress. On July 4th, NYS Secretary Tim McSweeney reported that a Derry man was incarcerated in Albany for a visa violation. A summer-long fight to get this man back to his wife and 2year-old daughter and his B&B business in Derry ensued. Despite appeals from Irish President Mary McAleese (his relative) and many others in the Irish Nationalist and Derry community, he was held by the slow moving bureaucracy of ICE for nearly three months! Thanks to the efforts of Brother McSweeney and the cooperation of the N.Y. Consulate we were able to keep the man in communication with his family in Boston and in Derry. He and his family are now happily reunited and grateful for the support they received from the AOH. The nightmare of his long incarceration may be over but it clearly points out the need for our work and communication on immigration. The time to get involved with these issues is now. I ask that you consider becoming your Division’s Immigration Chairman and contact me with any questions or concerns: Dan Dennehy, 22 Andre Lane, Cortlandt Manor, NY 10567, by email: or phone (914)588-2710. Coalition of Irish Immigration Centers Emerald Isle Immigration Center Cross Care Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform Thar Saile

Announcing… the Ancient Order of Hibernians’ 175th Anniversary Members’ Photo & Story Album Since 1836 the Ancient Order of Hibernians has been a place of refuge and comfort to incoming Irish immigrants. The many Divisions and club facilities help the new arrivals adjust socially and economically. In celebration of the 175th Anniversary, and the traditions and legacy of the Hibernians, we are putting together a special, commemorative Members’ Story and Photo Album. This publication will let you tell what the IrishAmerican experience means to you and your family. It can be anything as personal as the story of your ancestors, coming to America, or your participation in the AOH, or as broad as Irish-American traditions, values common among Irish Americans, or community involvement. Through these personal photos and narratives, you will see the evolution of the Irish American culture and the eternal bridge to our ancestors, and realize the individual growth we all have experienced as Hibernians. Every Irish American, past and present, shares an extraordinary bond. Collectively, you have experienced many different things. You are all connected through your Irish heritage, and this publication will help you to stay connected. In addition to documenting our history, this commemorative edition will also serve as a comprehensive reference of Irish Americans everywhere in the United States and Canada. You will be able to submit a four-color photograph as well as up to a 300 word story. Besides being a substantial 8 1/2 x 11 full color edition for you to own, a portion of the total project proceeds will benefit the AOH. The National AOH office has selected Harris Connect as their trusted partner to research and produce this commemorative publication. The Chesapeake, Virginia based publisher has worked with many fraternal organizations, and we encourage you to participate in this project as part of your Irish American birthright. Members will be contacted by phone, email and mail starting in late September. Be on the lookout in the near future for your chance to participate. Thank you for your support and effort in making this Ancient Order of Hibernians 175th Anniversary Members’ Story & Photo Album yet another way to record and preserve your own personal legacy as well as the ancestral connection we enjoy in this country and beyond.


Louisiana News Members of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Division 1 - Orleans Parish, Division 1 - Jefferson Parish, and Division 1 - St. Tammany Parish, gathered between October 3 and 5 to say an emotional but thankful farewell to The Late Most Reverend Philip M. Hannan, the former Archbishop of New Orleans. Hannan, the namesake of Division 1 in Orleans Parish, served as the 11th Archbishop of New Orleans from September 29, 1965, to December 6, 1988. A native of Washington, D.C., Hannan studied at Catholic University and later at the North American College in Rome, where he witnessed the rise of fascism in both Italy and Germany. After his ordination in 1939, he served as a priest in the Archdiocese of Washington until the outbreak of the Second World War. He then served his country as a member of the United States Army Chaplain Corps. Assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division, Hannan participated in numerous airborne operations, including Operation Market-Garden and the Battle of the Bulge. He returned home and later was consecrated Auxiliary Bishop, where he became a close confidante of the Kennedy family and delivered the sermon at President Kennedy’s funeral Mass. When Hannan arrived in New Orleans in 1965, Hurricane Betsy had just ravaged New Orleans, and the Archbishop made his impact immediately felt by riding in a boat throughout the flooded Lower 9th Ward and St. Bernard Parish and offering comfort to all those afflicted. Hannan also displayed the true Irish spirit of inclusion and diversity by continuing the desegregation of Catholic schools during the height of the Civil Rights era. After the fall of Saigon in 1975, he personally arranged for the emigration of thousands of Catholic South Vietnamese refugees, who settled in New Orleans and quickly became an active and integral part of the community. His frequent outreach to Catholics and non-Catholics alike made him one of the most popular figures in New Orleans, and non-Catholics throughout the New Orleans area frequently referred to him as “their Archbishop” and were profuse in their praise. The crowning achievement of Archbishop Hannan’s episcopate was the three-day visit of Pope John Paul II to

New Orleans in 1987. He retired as Archbishop in 1988, but remained active in ministry, especially at his beloved WLAE-TV and FOCUS television syndicate. Finally, Hannan — long a supporter of the New Orleans Saints NFL franchise and who often led the invocation for the team — was present when the Saints at long last hoisted the Lombardi Trophy upon winning the Super Bowl in 2010. Archbishop Hannan passed away on September 29, 2011, at the age of 98 and on the 46th anniversary of his consecration as Archbishop of New Orleans. New Orleans Archbishop Gregory Aymond (himself ordained by Hannan) set aside several days to honor the Archbishop. The Ancient Order of Hibernians mustered on Monday, October 3, to receive the casket carrying Archbishop Hannan’s remains. With the bagpipes playing “The Minstrel Boy” and appropriate spiritual tunes, the Hibernians stood at attention as their beloved leader and friend was carried into the Oratory of Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans. After three days of visitation at Notre Dame Seminary, where an estimated 50,000 people passed by to view the Archbishop, Hannan’s casket was transferred in a procession from Notre Dame to the St. Louis Cathedral. For the procession, Archbishop Aymond arranged a special, five-mile parade along which more than 7,000 New Orleans area Catholic school students (all of whom were born after Archbishop Hannan was well into retirement) stood quietly as Hannan’s casket passed by in a special horse-drawn carriage. The Hibernians, bearing the AOH and Archbishop Hannan Division banners, stood beside the Vietnamese-American Community from Mary Queen of Vietnam Parish as the casket was placed in the black carriage. Leading the procession was the famous St. Augustine High School “Marching 100” Band (another testament to Hannan’s spirit of inclusion and diversity) followed by the Archbishop, Bishops, members of the clergy and seminarians. Members of Catholic Charities of New Orleans followed the clergy; and last, but certainly not least, came the Hibernians bringing up the rear. In three silent rows, led by their banner bearers, the Hibernians marched solemnly but proudly in honor of their deceased Brother and Archbishop who always embraced his Irish heritage.

South Carolina News In July the Officers of the South Carolina State Board attended the Ordination of the three new Priests in the Diocese of Charleston and presented each with a check. AOH members in the state are actively involved in vocations and assisting our seminarians and priests and giving full support to Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone. In April, South Carolina lost its first State Chaplain, Msgr. Joseph Roth. The 9 Divisions raised $2,250 in his memory and a check was presented to the Bishop. State Chaplain Fr. Timothy Gahan requested that the collection at the convention Mass be given to Project St. Patrick. The AOH in South Carolina is dedicated to following in the footsteps of the founders in supporting vocations and our clergy. South Carolina recently held their 7th

Biannual AOH Convention in North Charleston jointly with the LAOH. Special Guests were Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone, National AOH President Seamus Boyle and National LAOH President Margaret Hennessy. The convention was co-hosted by the Msgr. John L Manning Division 1 Charleston County, President James P Nettles Jr and Our Lady of Knock Division, President Cheryl Daniels. Banquet entertainment was provided by Tom Hughes and Irish Singer and the Glor na Daire Academy of Irish Dance. This was the largest AOH convention ever held in South Carolina with over 170 attendees. South Carolina now has Major Degree Teams in both the AOH and LAOH. National Ritual Chairman Patrick Shannon certified the new Carraig Phadraig Major Degree Team.

Bishop Robert Guglielmone and Division Presidents at check presentation for Msgr Roth Seminarian fund. Charleston President James Nettles, State President Len Byrne, Horry President, Mason Luther, Greenville President Joe Deehan, Richland President Jim Lawracy, Bishop Robert Guglielmone, Beaufort President Richard Kearns, Berkeley president Neil Diamond, York President Don Buchanan and Spartanburg President Jordan Liflander.


At the conclusion of the five and a half mile route, the Hibernians marched slowly into Jackson Square to the front of the St. Louis Cathedral where several thousand adults and Catholic school students stood silently as the piper played “The Minstrel Boy” and “Danny Boy,” which was the Archbishop’s favorite Irish tune. Hannan’s casket was brought into the Cathedral, and again the Hibernians marched silently inside to pay their last respects. Upon conclusion of the processional ceremony, Archbishop Aymond, as well as former U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican Lindy Boggs and members of Hannan’s family thanked the Hibernians for adding such dignity and grace to the ceremony and helping people understand the great faith and spirit of the Irish as evidenced by the life of Archbishop Hannan. For our part, the Hibernians were both honored and humbled to have played even a small part in offering a fitting tribute to such an esteemed friend and leader. One Hibernian remarked that while the events were certainly emotional, they were not occasions for sadness but thanksgiving. “Anyone like our Archbishop, who lived such a full and complete 98 years,” he said, “merits thanksgiving rather than sadness. I mourn the loss of a friend and mentor, but I celebrate a great life lived in the spirit.” The Ancient Order of Hibernians shares that sentiment and wish eternal rest and perpetual light upon a man who truly “uncovered the light of his Irish spirit” for all to see.

The team is named for the Rock of Cashel or St. Patrick’s Rock, a historic site in Ireland. Past New York State President John Hennessy reviewed the team. Chairman of the team is Past State President Neil Diamond. Major members are Al Stiles, Jim Kelly, Tim Keneflict, James Nettles Jr., and Martin Fosberry. Team members come from Msgr. John L Manning Division, Brian Boru Division, John Mc Garry Division, and the Bishop Patrick Lynch Division. 49 men received their Major Degree at the convention, bringing the state total to 170 out of the 500 AOH members in the state. New state officers are James P. Nettles, Jr, James Kelly, Mason Luther and Dave Carlson. Nettles has served as President of the Msgr. John L Manning Division and Secretary, and Vice President of the South Carolina State Board. He is also a Past State Deputy and Former master of the Fourth Degree of the Knights of Columbus. Richard F. O’Brien of the Harp & Shamrock Division in Greenville was recognized as the state “Hibernian of the Year.” Dick has been very active in his Division and the state. He just completed four years as South Carolina State Treasurer and served as Treasurer of the Southern Hospitality room at the last two National Conventions. The Gold Shamrock award was presented to Dave Carlson (Joseph McGarry Division) for his work at the “Shrine of Our Lady of Hope” or the Shrine of South Carolina and to Carl Swanson (Harp & Shamrock Division) for his outstanding fund rais-

ing efforts. Outgoing State President and new National Director Leonard Byrne was inducted into the “Order of the Shillelagh.”

National Director Len Byrne installing James Nettles as President.

South Carolina “Hibernian of the Year” Richard F. O’Brien.

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Philadelphia Emerald Pipe Band.

AOH and LAOH dignitaries being piped into ballroom.

Deputy Consul General of Ireland Jacqueline O’Halloran Bernstein and National Treasurer Judge James McKay.

President’s Testimonial Dinner The 2011 President’s Dinner was held in Philadelphia on October 8, and all who attended raved about the grand event. Also at the dinner, the presentation of the Sean MacBride Award was made to the highly deserving Clara Reilly. National AOH President Seamus Boyle addressed the dinner’s participants, and his speech is reprinted here. “Rev. Clergy, distinguished guests, National, State, County and Division officers of the AOH and LAOH, family and friends, and especially our recipient of the prestigious Sean MacBride award, Clara Reilly, thank you for attending this evening’s festivities. I know many of you have traveled quite a distance, both from here in the States and Ireland so I hope you enjoy your night and have a safe trip home. (It’s not over yet, that is usually said at the end of the speech). As most of you know, this year is our 175 Anniversary of the formation of the AOH in America and we did have a great celebration in New York City in May, which many of you attended. This Anniversary celebration that has been ongoing throughout 2011, took over a year of hard work on the part of many people to accomplish. I would like to single out two people, Ed Wallace, chairman of the Anniversary Committee, and Mike McCormack, who was responsible for the beautiful Souvenir Journal that is on your table tonight. I think we owe a round of applause to both of these gentlemen. It is almost 14 years since I was elected to the National Board of the AOH and I must say it has been one hell of a ride. Although I have had many great times, there were also some sad times that came with the positions I held. Some great friends in the organization have passed on, as have some of my own family, and it is at times like this that I miss them most. Tom Gilligan, Past National President, who encouraged me to get involved and run for office, told me it was a piece of cake, but Tom always did exaggerate. And my brother, Mike, told me I was nuts, but he meant it. The people I have met on my travels throughout this great country of ours have treated me with the utmost respect, whether they agreed with my policies or not, and I have remained friends with many of them. The Board that I have worked with over the past 4 years has supported me in all my decisions, and I have always included them in making these decisions because I have learned that one man cannot run a ship by himself. Your Board has made great strides and has made many decisions that may not have been popular but it is easy for one to make popular decisions, but a lot harder to make the right decisions, and as far as I am concerned we have made the right decisions over the past 4 years. For 174 years, our organization has had no registered Trademark or Copyrights to our name or logo. But today, thanks to our Legal Counsel George Clough, we are now registered. We have contracted with Harris Connect, at no cost to us, to do a history of the AOH, by the AOH members themselves, telling their story about their state, county or division or their own personal story of how they came to be in the area where they now reside. Our online edition of the Hibernian Digest has been a great source of information to our members. We are now in the process of gathering emails and updating our membership list so as to save time and money on communications. There are so many other things that we have done as a board but most of you know what has been accomplished and I will leave it at that. The board we have today is one of the best boards I have ever worked with and they continue to serve you in a most effective way. Tonight is a night to celebrate. Celebrate our heritage with the music from the Willie Lynch Band. Celebrate our Religion, which we just did at our beautiful Mass celebrated by our National Chaplain Fr. Tom O’Donnell and our two Deputy Chaplains Fr. Reid and Fr. Pearce, not to forget the beautiful voice of Louise Donnelly, our vocalist. Celebrate a woman who has fought for many years for peace and justice in Ireland, Clara Reilly. Celebrate our history by reading the history in our Anniversary Journal and educating our friends, family and especially our children of the history of our ancestors. Celebrate our health by being able to be here tonight with our friends and family and celebrate our peace in Ireland, fragile as it might be but much better than it was even 15 years ago. I would like to thank all of you for attending the festivities tonight, especially all of my family from here in the States and from Ireland. My relatives from Ireland who came here for the wedding last week, about 12 of them, are like grandchildren: I like to see them come but I love to see them go back — and that works both ways when I go back they feel the same, here he comes when is he leaving. My children, Mike and Tara, Bronagh who was married last Saturday and is on her honeymoon and opted to miss this affair, but most of all my wife, Berna, who puts up with me all of the time but especially when I ask her, can you pack a bag for me quick, I forgot to tell you I am going to Montana or Georgia or someplace else in the morning. Thank you all especially you, Berna, have a great night, enjoy the band and have a safe trip home.”

MC Ed Costello introducing Consul General Jacqueline O’Halloran for a few words.

Brendan Moore, Clara Reilly and Maureen Shelton.

Officials of the AOH and LAOH at the head table as the ceremonies began.

Ed Dougherty and Nancy Cullen, Presidents of AOH & LAOH Division 39, and Co-Chairs for the Presidents Dinner.

National President Seamus Boyle and his wife, Bernadette.

Part of the Boyle Family at one of the Quilts from RFJ that were displayed.

2012 Irish Way & Study Abroad Scholarships By William J. Sullivan, National Chairman The Irish Way, a unique cultural experience for teenagers, is a nationally recognized summer study abroad program that has educated over 4,000 American high school students in grades 10 to 12 since 1976. The Irish Way was conceived by HRH Princess Grace of Monaco, who was the Irish American Cultural Institute’s Chairman until her untimely death. Every summer the Irish American Cultural Institute sends approximately 100 American high school students to the Irish Way Program. The program consists of three parts: Irish Education. Students are introduced to Ireland’s history and traditions through structured sessions in Irish language, literature, history and culture. Students also participate in workshops of Celtic art, music, folk dancing and traditional Irish sports such as hurling. All sessions are taught by certified high school level teachers. An Irish Experience. Field trips to museums, sites of archeological, geological and historical significance, and to the world-renowned Abbey Theater complement the program, along with excursions to local Gaelic football tournaments and hurling matches. And Irish Touring. The final days of the Irish Way are spent touring Ireland. The Irish Way was founded on the belief that fostering an appreciation of other cultures is an important part of an individual’s development. It is an opportunity for young people to explore the rich heritage and tradition of Ireland while also experiencing the country’s distinct culture face-to-face. Students receive an education that goes way beyond any nation. The Irish Way is truly a lesson in international citizenship. The AOH and LAOH National Boards are proud to offer two $500 Scholarships to this excellent program for the son, daughter, grandson or granddaughter of a member of the AOH and LAOH. Anyone who would like further information about the 2012 program is encouraged to contact Carol Buck, the Irish Way Coordinator at the Irish American Cultural Institute, 1 Lackawanna Place, Morristown, NJ 07960 or by e-mail at The Irish Way telephone number is: (973) 605-1991. An Application Request Form for the AOH & LAOH Irish Way Scholarship is included in this issue of the Hibernian Digest. The National Board of the Ancient Order of Hibernians has also established two annual $1,000 Junior Year Abroad Scholarships for the son or daughter or grandchild of an AOH member, who is attending an accredited college or university in the United States, and who has been accepted at an accredited college/university in Ireland. Should not enough applications for the Junior Year Abroad Scholarship be realized, then $500 Scholarships for Semester Abroad Programs will be considered and granted when appropriate. The deadline for the next round of applications for this scholarship is May 1, 2012. For those who are interested, the Application Request Form for the Study Abroad Scholarship is also included in this issue of the Hibernian Digest. More information on both of these scholarship programs is also available on the AOH National Website. As we all know, college educations, whether here in the United States or in Ireland, are expensive. In order to help increase our membership’s awareness of other scholarships, loans and grants that are available for study here and abroad, we encourage you to view the following websites: Education in Ireland, (; US Government Federal Aid, (https// directloan/index.action) or ( schoolSearch?locale=en EN), which offer a host of information regarding financial assistance and grants that will help supplement our scholarship awards and make an education in Ireland more affordable. Hopefully, this information will open up doors for those who at this point find such a financial undertaking overwhelming. Have a Happy Christmas and a Blessed, Healthy and Happy New Year!

Welcome to new consul general

The Illinois State Board welcomes Chicago’s new Consul General of Ireland for his first public event since arriving in the United States, the Illinois State convention. The back row of the picture includes John A. Donavan, State Treasurer; Tom Hoffman, Immediate Past President; John L. Martin, State President and Robert Simpson, State Vice President. Seated are Aidan Cronin, Consul General of Ireland and Danny O’Connell National Director. Not present for the picture was State Secretary Kevin Riordan.




For more information on the Irish Way Scholarships write to: Irish American Cultural Institute 1 Lackawana Place, Morristown, NJ 07960 For more information on the Irish Studies Scholarship contact: William J. Sullivan, National Chairman 324 Winter Street, North Andover, MA 01845 E-MAIL: TO REQUEST AN APPLICATION Name ____________________________________________ Home Address ____________________________________ City _______________________ State _____Zip ________ Telephone # _______________________________________ E-Mail Address -----------------------------------------------------Present HS Grade_____ or College Attending___________ Parent/Grandparent is a Member of Division __________ County____________________________ State __________ Parent/Grandparent Name __________________________

APPLICATION DEADLINE: MAY 1, 2012 PLEASE NOTE: Parent/Grandparent must be a paid up member of a Division. Verification will be checked with National & Divisional Secretaries FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT WILLIAM J. SULLIVAN, National Chairman 324 Winter Street – North Andover, MA 01845 E-MAIL:

Irish American Heritage Month By J J Kelly, Chairman We have been quite busy the past couple of months in our continuing effort to have March permanently established as Irish-American Heritage Month. I take this occasion to publicly thank Neil Cosgrove and John Schell for all they have done and continue to do. A couple of highlights of our ongoing efforts follow. We have been in communication with the Department of Education regarding their Federal Resources for Educational Excellence (FREE) webpage. In an effort to make information available regarding Irish-American heritage, history and culture, we have asked them to include Irish-American information onto the list of Ethnic Groups under the U.S. History Topics. The officer in charge of this webpage, Kirk Winters, has responded favorably, stating he will be searching federal agency websites for quality teaching and learning materials related to our heritage, history and culture. He further stated that what he finds will be added to the FREE website. He further invited us to do the same — to locate any federally created or federally supported materials — and send the URL to him. If you are aware of any such sites, please send the information to John Schell at We met with Congressman Peter King’s senior staffer in charge of Irish Programs, and brought her up to date on our efforts to make IAHM a permanent event. She was fully supportive of this, and promised to work with Congressman King and other members of the Friends of Ireland in helping to make this happen. She had further ideas in how we, the AOH, can proceed, which we will pursue. Further, she provided us with the names of the current Friends of Ireland. This comes to about 44 names. We have initiated a letter-writing campaign to a very limited number of federal agencies, asking them to devote resources to Irish-American events during the month of March in future years. Primary targeted agencies include the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian Institution and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Additionally, a letter has been drafted to the Secretary of the Army asking that Army Regulation 600-20, Table 6-1 be amended to include Irish-American Heritage Month, thus allowing DOD agencies to plan for and expend funds to promote IAHM. This would not require public law, in that some of the ethnic observances listed in this table cite as the authority the date of an earlier Presidential Proclamation. So, our efforts continue. Finally, thank you all for all you do to support and promote our Irish heritage, and to support our goal of making Irish-American Heritage Month a permanent, recurring event, not dependent upon an annual Presidential Proclamation. National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

DC News By Conor Higgins, President & Historian, AOH DC 4 Sons of Aidan Irish Eyes of Blue and Gray It has been 150 years since the first cannons sang through the air to begin the long song that would be the American Civil War. The War would last four more years, four excruciatingly long years that would claim the lives of more than 600,000 Americans of the North and South. As in every American conflict the armies of the nation, and in this case nations, at war were peopled by souls of many different countries. Immigrants from all over the world took up arms in the name of the Union or Confederacy to fight for their new homes. The Irish were among those immigrants to fight. The Irish were not newcomers to the United States at the time of the Civil War, having fought in conflicts on American soil since King William’s War in the late 17th century. So when it came to the Civil War it is no mystery or surprise that the Irish found themselves with muskets in hand, nor should it be a surprise to history. However, Irish involvement in the War was not limited to the venerated 69th Irish Brigade from New York, and the Irish found themselves on both sides of the War, wearing both Union blue and Confederate gray. In the North, an estimated 150,000 Irish joined the ranks of the Union army, accounting for roughly 22 percent of troops available for duty at peak strength. Drawing on the large population of immigrants living in the numerous city centers of the North, the Union army was able to call on hundreds of thousands of newly arrived immigrants to their new army. Along with numerous enlisted recruits, the Irish also served as officers in the army, leading all Irish units, as well as a few mixed companies. One of those leaders was Colonel Michael Corcoran, the commander of the 69th New York until his capture at the first battle of Bull Run. Corcoran was undergoing court martial when the shots were fired at Fort Sumter for disobeying a direct order. The order that he disobeyed was a refusal to march in a parade for the Prince of Wales during his visit to the City. Corcoran was also one of the founding members of the Fenian Brotherhood in the United States, a fact that led many Irish immigrants to enlist in his unit. Another famous commander was the man who took the reins of the 69th from Corcoran, and that was Colonel Thomas Meagher, who would end the war a brigadier general. The story of Meagher outlines the difficult choices the Irish had to face in America, for though Meagher fought for the Union, his close friend John Mitchel’s three sons joined the Confederacy to fight against him. The Union commanders put him in charge of a native-born unit, but they resented having an Irishman in command, and Meagher was transferred. When Corcoran was captured at Bull Run, it was Meagher who kept the unit together during the disastrous Union defeat. His heroism and courage inspired many New York Irishmen to enlist in his Irish Brigade which he formed following the battle. It was he who led the Brigade in the Pennsula campaign and the battle of Antietam, 1862. T. Meagher was no stranger to conflict even before he left for the United States, as he was a founding member of the Irish

Confederation and Young Ireland. These men were two examples of Irish immigrants answering the call of their new country, as they had once done for their old country. But like the wars of ancient Ireland, the Gaels found themselves facing their countrymen from across the battlefield. The Confederate Army drew many Irish immigrants and Irish already in the country into its ranks. To many the Confederacy was a means to fight the oppression that the Union represented to them, and that they identified with the British. An estimated 40,000 Irish enlisted in the Confederate Army, accounting for 15 percent of troops available for duty at peak strength. There were fewer all-Irish units in the South as their presence was less resisted; Irish officers even led native-born units, which was not practiced in the North. Among those units were the 24th Georgia, 26th Alabama and 16th Mississippi, which served with distinction. A number of regiments boasted “Emerald Guard” units, which became known for their ferocity in battle. But one is hard pressed to find famed allIrish units in the South, as there was little need to split up native-born and foreign-born soldiers. The Irish found prominence in the South: William M. Browne was born in Co. Mayo and served in the British Army during the Crimean war. He served as the Confederate Secretary of State and rose to the rank of Brigadier as the personal aid-decamp of President Jefferson Davis. Another notable officer of Irish origin was Patrick Cleburne, who was dubbed “the Stonewall of the West.” He began his military service in the British Army, but rose no higher than corporal. Starting the Civil War off as a private in the Arkansas Rifles, he was elected Captain, and eventually rose to brigadier general and was praised highly by Gen. Lee. General Cleburne was known for his skillful use of terrain and his refusal to surrender ground once it was won, an attribute common among the Gael. These two men are examples of Irish courage, resiliency and ambition. Men like Meagher, Corcoran, Cleburne and Browne left behind a world of oppression, degradation and servitude for a chance to live in a land where they and their children could live without the bayonets of their occupiers poking them in the back, reminding them of their subservience. The Irish who fought for the North and the South saw it as their duty to defend their new home, and continue the fight they began in their homeland. For most Irish, the North was a beacon of freedom, where their family and kin had gone before them and found jobs and opportunity in cities such as Boston and New York. For the Irish in the South, they melded into a land that accepted them as farmers and businessmen, and they became a part of the history of cities such as New Orleans and Savannah. The Irish in America have always fought, one way or another, but that is another story. The Civil War was a time when brother fought brother, and to the Irish the same song had been sung before. Ours is a history of violence, stories of ancient Irish kings at war abound in our myths, Brian Boru fought Irishmen in order to unite the island, and open warfare among the counties existed well after the Normans set studded boot to Ireland’s green and rocky shores. So it should be no mystery that in answering the calls of their new homeland, the Irish felt duty bound to defend their freedoms with the musket and the sword, and so they did, wearing Yankee Blue or Rebel Gray.

Ohio News National Director Danny O’Connell Awarded Commodore John Barry Medal Ohio State President Joe Casey awarded the Commodore John Barry Award to National Director Danny O’Connell during the Ohio State Convention. President Casey stated that Danny has been instrumental in division, state and national levels and is always there to help him out. He also quipped “If you looked up Hibernian in the dictionary, you would see Danny’s picture!” O’Connell has served as president and vice president on both the Division and State level as well as numerous appointed offices. Under Danny O’s leadership Mahoning County Division 6 grew tremendously in membership and Hibernian activity. O’Connell stated he is most proud of the programs established under his presidency that raise a minimum of $1,000 for Project St. Patrick and between $1,000 and $1,750 for the Freedom for All Ireland Christmas appeal annually. “I believe these programs best represent the basic fundamental purpose of the AOH and I am proud that my division continues to be a national leader in these Hibernian causes today.” As state president Danny O made personal contact with each AOH member in the state of Ohio encouraging them to help grow Hibernian activity state wide at the same time conducting a statewide raffle to support Project St. Patrick. As state vice president he ran the most successful fundraising efforts for Ohio’s national convention hospitality room in history turning over excess profits to both the AOH and LAOH Ohio State Boards. In addition to his basic Hibernian activities O’Connell has demonstrated tremendous political strength and the ability to deal with both political parties on the many Hibernian issues. An active leader in our efforts dealing with extradition, immigration, a united Ireland and more he has been instrumental in establishing contacts and meetings for the AOH in Washington DC.

Kearney seeking higher office Frank Kearney Jr. of Connecticut has announced his intention to seek the office of National Treasurer at the 2012 National Convention in New York. Active in the Order since becoming a member in 1977, Kearney is a member of Division 1 in Meriden CT, where he has served in numerous positions, including three terms as Division President and AOH Chairman of several successful Connecticut AOH-LAOH State Conventions hosted by his division. He took his Major Degree in 1988 and has held the position of New Haven County Board President and the CT State Board positions of County Director, Secretary, Vice President and President. National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

National Board meets with Sen. Rob Portman. AOH national board took time to meet with Ohio Senator Rob Portman during a recent stop in Washington DC. Photo includes: Sean Pender, Jack O’Connell, Jere Cole, Senator Rob Portman, Ned McGinley, Danny O’Connell and Dan Dennehy.

Michigan News

Michigan AOH donates $1,000 to Catholic schools.

Presenting a check to Sr. Patricia Fisher, principal of St. Joseph’s Academy in Adrian, and April McCaskey, principal of Sacred Heart School in Hudson, was Patrick Maguire, left, president of the AOH Adrian Division, and Tom Brennan, AOH division officer. St. Joseph Academy and Sacred Heart School are the only Catholic schools in Lenawee County, and appreciate the Hibernian’s donation each year. The Adrian Division is celebrating its 17th year serving the community.


Connecticut News By Phil Gallagher Catalpa Captain remembered New London’s John P. Holland Division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians recently initiated a commemorative ceremony as part of its mission to preserve and promulgate Irish heritage. The ceremony combined an event from the history of Irish freedom in America with New London’s heritage as home of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, with the Academy’s historical roots in New Bedford, MA, and with a tribute to the Coast Guard’s life saving heritage. Aware that the Barque EAGLE was going to make a stop in Ireland’s County Waterford as part of this summer’s cruise, and that it would also be stopping in New Bedford, Massachusetts, on its return cruise, AOH Division Vice President James Gallagher approached the skipper of the EAGLE, Captain Eric Jones, with a suggestion to tie the two stops together. He loaned Captain Jones his copy of an appropriate historical book describing an heroic and daring 19th century Irish American seafaring event that serves as a milestone in the quest for human freedom. In 1875 an old whaling vessel, the CATALPA, was purchased and restored in New Bedford by the Clan na Gael with the aim of freeing six Irish prisoners held in captivity in a British jail in Freemantle, Australia. The successful venture from New Bedford to the west coast of Australia is described in Peter Stevens’s 2002 book, “The Voyage of the Catalpa.” The Catalpa’s Captain George Anthony, with no ties to Ireland, agreed to lead the voyage because of his sense of fair play and humanitarianism. His actions during this voyage went well beyond the call of duty as he risked his life and career to effect the rescue. Following the success of the voyage, the British Government banned Captain Anthony from sailing the seven seas in whaling vessels and from visiting any British ports, thereby ending his career at sea. Captain Anthony died in 1913 and is buried in New Bedford. Brother Gallagher asked Captain Jones if he would like to participate in the laying of a wreath at Captain Anthony’s gravesite during his New Bedford port stop. Captain Jones was honored to pay his respects to a Yankee sea captain whose courage was representative of America’s championing of freedom. On July 29 the simple ceremony was attended by officers of the EAGLE, and by members of the State of Massachusetts AOH and the New London AOH. Captain Jones laid a beautiful wreath, courtesy of the Massachusetts AOH State Board, at Captain Anthony’s grave, while bagpiper Paul Boyle ( Div. 9, Plymouth) provided the background musical lament. Also, Peter Ryan, Great-Great Grandson of Captain Anthony, and a native of New Bedford, displayed some memorabilia belonging to Captain Anthony. Participating in the event were: from the New London, CT Division - Sean and Brian Moore, John

A wreath was laid at Captain George Anthony’s grave in New Bedford, MA, on July 29, 2011. From left, Frank O’Connor (MA), John Duddy (American Flag), Dick Wall (MA), Tom Yourell (Irish flag), Captain Eric Jones, Commander, USCG Barque EAGLE, Joe Walsh (MA), Lt. Jeff Janaro, Ops Officer, USCG Barque EAGLE, John Todd (MA), Sean Moore and Brian Moore (holding banner).

Duddy, Tom Yourell and Jim Gallagher, and, from the Massachusetts AOH, State President Dick Wall (Div. 10, Lynn), State Treasurer Frank O’Connor (Div. 8, Lawrence), Joe Walsh and John Todd (Div. 9, Plymouth). Captain Jones noted that the event was a fitting component in an educational journey for the crew of the Eagle; they sailed and met members of the Irish nautical team in Waterford; their return voyage approximated that of the legendary 6th century sailing path of St. Brendan’s voyage to the Americas, and they participated in this celebration of American freedom in the initial home of the Coast Guard training center, prior to the building of the present Academy in New London, CT. As an epilogue to this adventuresome story it should be noted that in 1876 some of the funds raised in celebration of the successful voyage of the Catalpa were used by the Clan na Gael to give John P. Holland his start as a submarine developer. The U.S. Navy had recently rejected Holland’s proposal. In 1900, it was Holland’s Boat No. 6 that became the U.S. Navy’s first modern submarine, the SS-1, thus establishing the U.S. Naval Submarine Service. President Bill Flannery presided over a very successful State Board meeting in Naugatuck on October1, during which reports were made and plans were developed for future events. A high point of the meeting was the unanimous endorsement of Frank Kearney Jr. of Meriden for the position of National Treasurer. Connecticut Hibernians are particularly proud of Frank and the excellent job he has done in every position of responsibility he has held in the AOH. The Connecticut State Board would not enjoy a favorable financial position today if it were not for the work that Frank did as State President. It was also announced at the meeting to hearty applause

Wisconsin News ‘gniomhaiochtai Milwaukee’ (Milwaukee Activities) Milwaukee Irish Fest is a yearly ethnic festival held at the Henry Maier Festival Park in Milwaukee, every third weekend in August. More than 130,000 people attend the Fest each year to take in nearly 250 acts on 17 stages. The fourday downtown festival started in 1981. Irish Fest is the largest of the ethnic festivals held at the Summerfest grounds, and holds claim to the largest celebration of Irish Culture in the world. Festival highlights include:· performances from local, regional and national Irish Dance troupes, music from nearly 250 artists from around the world, sung in English and Irish, stages for Céilí dancing, and an area to learn Céilí dancing, celebrations of Irish sport and culture, Liturgy for Peace & Justice held in the Marcus Amphitheater on Sunday morning. The annual closing event is the Scattering, a gathering of many of the festival’s musicians playing together in one combined session, with 50 or more 16

that the Hartford AOH Division and the newly formed Hartford LAOH Division would host the 2013 State Convention. The Hartford Division is currently engaged in a vigorous membership drive. President Flannery also announced that Dave Reisdorf of Bridgeport is the new State Webmaster ( Connecticut Hibernians are particularly interested in the success of the Barry Gate project at Annapolis because of the work that was done by the late Tom Egan who worked tirelessly in his role as National Director to obtain the proper recognition of Commodore John Barry as the First Flag Officer of the United States Navy. Despite the looming presence of Hurricane Irene, the First Connecticut Softball Bash went off as scheduled on August 25. The event was put together by Bridgeport AOH activities Chairman Jim Murray. Over 40 members from the Bridgeport, Danbury and New Haven Divisions participated. The lads from Danbury walked away with the winner’s trophy and Manager Jason King promised to host the 2nd annual Bash in Danbury next year. Kudos to Jim Murray and all others who made this a successful event that brought together many young Hibernians, which cannot but help the promotion of Hibernianism in Connecticut. Both the Danbury and Waterbury Freedom For All Ireland committees are doing great things. Danbury, led by Owen McDonnell, is working toward getting the City of Danbury to support a resolution for a United Ireland, while Waterbury, under the leadership of Joe Flaherty, commemorated at Bobby Sands Circle in Hartford the 30th anniversary of the death of the hunger strikers. Most Divisions in Connecticut will be holding Masses for deceased members in November with Waterbury and New London having the distinction of holding commemoration ceremonies at the large Celtic Crosses that they own in local cemeteries. Other items of note include: Waterbury recently honored Past State President Bill Scully as Hibernian of the Year. Meriden has been promoting Irish culture by holding Ceili Dances in its recently refurbished John & Dot Kasey Hall. Danbury Hibernians completed their 17th annual Greater Danbury Irish Festival in September and held their annual Celtic New Year Celebration on Halloween under the chairmanship of John Feeney. Danbury and Stamford will both be providing turkeys to the needy for the Holidays while the JFK members from Bridgeport continue their fine work at the Merton Center. Stamford, New London and Danbury also held golf tournaments. Danbury Vice-President Jim Palardy drew over 100 golfers for a shotgun start on October 15. Send any news to: Phil Gallagher (

North Carolina News By Bob Driscoll, State Vice President

Archbishop Jerome Listecki presided over the Liturgy for Peace & Justice Mass for at least 11,000 people Sunday, August 21, in the Marcus Amphitheater during Irish Fest. Organizers say it is the largest outdoor Catholic Mass in the country.

musicians on the stage at one time not uncommon. Irish people the world over come to see the festival from as far off as England, Scotland, Egypt, Pakistan and Ireland itself. Many of Ireland’s news stations will send reporters over to cover the festival. Irish Fest celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2005.

North Carolina held its state convention on October 7-9 and installed new state board officers. Back row, from left, John Ryan: Dist Dir. West, Pat Tracy: Rec.Sec., Tim Whelen: Tres., Bob Driscoll: VP, Bill Kelly: Pres, John Ryan: Dist. Dir. East, Joe Dougherty: Dist Dir. Central.Front row, from left, Ellen Kelly: Cath. Act., Bernadette Brady: Miss. and Charity, Mary Driscoll: VP, Janice Donahue: Pres., Pat Johnson: Rec Sec, Lynn Purcell: Trea., Hope Cusick: Historian. Wake County: The Governor Thomas Burke Division in Raleigh held its 10th annual Irish Music and Heritage Festival on September 10. Over 350 attendees were treated to an all-American cookout while listening to 12 local Irish bands. As a result of the fundraisers during the year, the division was able to present $500 each to Victory Junction Camp, a camp for disabled children, Saint Thomas More Academy, a Raleigh Catholic high school, and Carolina Patriot Rovers that provides guide dogs for solders who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder. National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Florida News Rev. Peter Walsh joins Brevard County AOH President Conrad Osborne, the Officers and Brothers of the Fulton J. Sheen Division are proud to welcome Rev. Peter Walsh as their Division Chaplain. In the tradition of the Order, Fr. Peter was initiated at their Division meeting October 19. Father Walsh was recently assigned as an Associate Pastor at Saint John the Evangelist Catholic Community in Viera, Florida, after spending five years in campus ministry at Saint Thomas More, the Catholic Chapel and Center at Yale University. While at Yale, he worked with graduate students, developing social and spiritual programs that connected Catholic graduate students with each other and with the intellectual tradition of the Catholic Church. “Theology on Tap” was one particularly successful program that brought graduate students together to share theology and libations at the graduate-student level. Father Walsh also worked with undergraduate student-athletes, called Cathletes, who explored the spirituality of the student athlete. In addition, Father Walsh led alternative spring break trips to Biloxi, Miss., where students worked with disaster relief following Hurricane Katrina and to Lima, Peru. With his background in campus ministry, Father Walsh will work with programs for young-adult Catholics as part of his new responsibilities as associate pastor in his new parish. Born in Boston, he remains a faithful Red Sox fan. His Irish roots take him to County Galway, where he visited his ancestral farm shortly after his ordination. When asked to reflect on his initiation, Father relayed that while he took his Hibernian oath he was reminded of similar feelings when he visited the water font at St. Colman’s well in Kilmacduagh. “This is a source and renewal of our Irish heritage.” After graduating from Stonehill College in Massachusetts, he entered the Congregation of Holy Cross and was ordained a priest in 1989. He attended seminary at the University of Notre Dame, where he graduated with a Master’s of Divinity degree and a passion for Notre Dame football. He also has a master’s degree from Boston College in English literature with a concentration in Irish poetry and often brings insights from literature into his preaching. Father Walsh enjoys hiking, reading, independent films and all kinds of music. We welcome Fr. Pete into the Order and our Division. De fide et operibus nostris Guide us in our faith and actions. Florida Hibernians commemorate Commodore John Barry — the man John Barry Day: National Holiday of the Order, 17 September 2011, Jetty Park, Cape Canaveral, Florida As the cruise ship passed by it is likely that few knew the Alliance, her Captain or Crew. They leaned on the railing, with no chance of hearing, You could see their lips mouthing, “Who are they Cheering?” Asking each other, they now wondered aloud, “Why the Green shirts?, “What’s all th’row?” What flag is that, with the Red White and Blue? It waves so briskly, “Do you know who?” Who fought for us so that we could have Freedom? Who was the man that was there to lead them? Who are those people, and why do they stand, All with reverence, and some at command? What battle was here, you could imagine them say, What happened here, on this beautiful day? Standing on shore our speakers did tell! The story of Barry, and how he “Gave ’em hell!” A Man of Wexford, Ireland! That’s who he was! He sailed this ocean, and with fervent cause! Hibernians are we, who remember him dearly, The Flag, it’s the Tri-color! Of Ireland clearly! From humble beginnings did Barry once come, rising quickly through ranks, now with 36 gun! He stood tall in stature, a glint in his eyes, The Alliance below him, and wind in the skies! He defended the freedom that all men should have, We cheer him, we morn him, and we understand. Barry Captained the ship known for speed and agility, from sea to Philadelphia, none questioned his ability. We’re here today to celebrate his life! His victories, his sorrows, and our people’s strife. Said he “spurned the eyedee of being a treater.” When they tried to bribe him, he knew Freedom was Greater! Off these shores, the War of Independence did end, Barry and Crew again did Defend! George Washington and Senate, gave the command, Commission #1, to be Freedom’s right hand! To the visitor we thank you for coming to this place, and to wonder what happened, at this time and space. So know us, and join us, and remember on your way, the reasons we celebrate, John Barry Day! John Barry - Born 1745 at Ballysampson, Our Lady’s Island, Tacumshin Parish, County Wexford, Ireland, died September 12, 1803, at his home known as Strawberry Hill, buried Philadelphia USA, Old St. Mary’s Churchyard, Commodore, and Father of the American Navy, member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, Hibernia Fire Company, Society of the National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Cincinnati, Charitable Captains of Ships Club. The State of Florida and the Fulton J. Sheen Division of Brevard County, began their celebration of John Barry “The Man” with an invocation by State Historian Patrick Moynihan. Chairman of the Florida Barry Commission Edward Kelly, State Pres. Seán Denny, Division and County President Conrad Osborne and Malcolm MacLouth, President of the Cape Canaveral Chapter of the Navy League all spoke about Barry and his life. Florida State VP Phil Mulrenin and LAOH Florida President Margo Neurendorf were also in attendance. Following the ceremony at Cape Canaveral, the group, including State President Seán Denny and guests Jim Gillis and Jim Prior from the Pinellas 2 Division proceeded to the Brevard County Veterans Memorial Park on Merritt Island. There they surveyed the site to be used for the placement of a John Barry Monument. Ground Breaking will take place before the end of the year. Chairman Edward Kelly and Patrick Keane head the project. Both are members of the Fulton J. Sheen Division. Plans are to erect a statue similar to that in Philadelphia outside Independence Hall (Barry pointing out to sea) to be placed near water’s edge at the Veterans Park. Currently located there are two helicopters in flight and a World War II tank at the entrance. The property hosts an impressive courtyard with Memorials for all American wars and conflicts, representing all branches of the armed services. Recently a 9-11-01 Memorial was added. The Division concluded the day of celebration, remembrance and Hibernian camaraderie at their annual Barry Day Luncheon. Patrick Keane told the story and answered the question: “Why did cannon balls often “bounce off” the USS Constitution, “Old Ironsides”? The Answer? Because Commodore Barry knew that evergreen, southern live oak, is native to the southeastern United States and is hard as a rock! Imported from St. Simons Island, Georgia, in 1794, the wood was used to construct the Constitution’s frame! Pictures of the Divisions Barry Day Celebration and proposed location of the Barry Monument can be found on the Division’s website

From left, Chairman, Florida State Barry Commission Edward Kelly, Florida State President Sean Denny, Fulton Sheen Division President Conrad Osborne along with Division Members flank the Proclamation of Barry Day by the Brevard County Commissioners.

Minnesota News By Timothy Halloran, Shamrock Division Shamrock Division honors former LAOH state president Mary Minton celebrated her 100th birthday on Sept 4, 2011, at her residence in Belle Plaine. To help celebrate, members of the Shamrock Division of the Minnesota AOH, dressed in their official uniforms, arrived to thank her for her years of work in the Minnesota LAOH. Mrs. Minton served as state president for two years as well as two years as state treasurer and two years as state vicepresident. The Minnesota LAOH had 743 members and 11 divisions then. She continued to be active on the Minnesota state board for several years after serving her terms. Mary continues to be active socially and supportive of the local Hibernian efforts. The Shamrock Division delegation congratulated and thanked Mrs. Minton for her dedication to the Hibernian ideals both at local and state levels. We wish her many more productive years. The Shamrock Division of Le Sueur County of Minnesota is active with 56 members.


New Jersey News

Passaic County Hibernians

Great work by our members North and South. Notre Dame Division 1 held a beefsteak dinner to help a family in need in Passaic County. The division donated $1,600 to the family of Andrew Goodell, a 3 year old Hawthorne, NJ resident that was diagnosed with a childhood cancer known as Neuroblastoma to aid with the cost of treatment. The division also donated $1,000 to Eva’s Kitchen located in Paterson, NJ to aid the organization in feeding those in need in Passaic County.

In the spirit of Catholic Charity, Notre Dame Division 1 Passaic County New Jersey was proud to donate to these worthwhile causes to assist brethren in our county. The Commodore Barry Division 1, Gloucester County, New Jersey held the 35th annual Commemoration and wreath laying for Commodore John Barry at the bridge named for him in Logan Township, New Jersey on September 10, 2011. There was a great turn out of dignitaries and

New Jersey Gloucester County AOH and NJ State Treasurer Sean Hughes

Massachusetts News By Bill Sullivan The AOH in Massachusetts has been on the move over the last several months. Here is a roundup of AOH Happenings. Representatives from over 100 Massachusetts Irish-based organizations met on Saturday, October 1, for an all-day conference at the Irish Cultural Center in Canton, Massachusetts. Following the conference, a reception, hosted by Michael Lonergan, the Consul General to Boston, was held at the Consul General’s offices in downtown Boston. A dinner followed at the Back Bay Hotel. Members from the AOH and LAOH from across the state were in attendance. Brig St. John Commemoration The Father John Murphy Division 9 AOH of Plymouth, Massachusetts, on Sunday, October 9, hosted a Memorial Mass at Saint Anthony’s Church in Cohasset for those lost aboard the Brig St. John, which sank off the coast of Cohasset in 1849. Following the Memorial Mass, Hibernians from across Massachusetts gathered at the Cohasset Central Cemetery to lay a wreath and recite prayers for the deceased at the site where, in 1914, the Ancient Order of Hibernians and the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians of Massachusetts, erected a 20-foot Celtic Cross as a memorial to the unidentified victims. Essex County Board AOH The AOH and LAOH Essex County Board held their Annual Memorial Mass on Sunday, October 30, in the Faculty Chapel in Austin Hall at Merrimack College, North Andover, Massachusetts. The Mass was celebrated by Essex County and Division 8 Chaplain, the Rev. William Waters OSA. A coalition followed the Mass in Austin Hall. At the conclusion of the Mass, Father Waters was presented with a traveling Mass Kit from both boards.

division members for the Irish born, revolutionary war hero and the Father of the American Navy. The New Jersey State Treasurer Sean Hughes attended along with Heather Simmons County Freeholder, Senator Robert Menendez’s Aide and many members and officers from divisions in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Unveiled was the new Memorial garden that was funded by donations from the New Jersey State Board and Mr. Ron Jones in memory of his wife. Afterwards at the AOH hall mass was celebrated by chaplain Fr. Ken Hallahan. Refreshments were served and the crowd was entertained with live music by the Broken Shillelaghs. Visit for news on the December 3rd Barry Fundraiser in Gloucester County; special guests; “The Beltway Bulldogs” Jack O’Brian and John McInerney; and Tim McGrath author of “John Barry: An American Hero in the Age of Sail” Remembering Fr. Mychal Judge By Michael Collum The AOH Father Mychal Judge Division 1, Hudson County, NJ, placed

Division 19 AOH/LAOH Lowell Division 19 AOH and LAOH in Lowell hosted Ireland’s “Happy Man,” Cahal Dunne, on Saturday, October 29, at the Lowell Lodge of Elks in Lowell. Dunne, who has appeared on David Letterman, Entertainment Tonight and who has also performed for several American Presidents played to a sellout crowd! Golden Bridges Awards Two dynamic days of events took place in Boston on November 10 and 11 to spotlight Northwest Ireland — in particular Co Donegal and Derry City — in order to cement the bonds of business, culture, education and friendship across the Atlantic. Over these two days: a seminar, a roundtable discussion at the Massachusetts State House, a business breakfast at University of Massachusetts at Lowell as well as the fourth annual Golden Bridges Luncheon at Boston’s Seaport Hotel, where the David R. Burke Golden Bridges Award was presented by Patricia Burke, the widow of the late David R. Burke, to Arthur McCabe. Also honored at the Golden Bridges Award was Past AOH National President Jack Meehan for his work with the undocumented Irish. A large delegation of Massachusetts AOH and LAOH members attended. Among the special guests in attendance was Gerry Adams T.D. Division 8 AOH/LAOH Lawrence Division 8’s Annual AOH/LAOH Christmas Party will be held on Wednesday evening, December 7, at the Claddagh Pub & Restaurant. A large gathering of AOH and LAOH members, family and friends is expected to feast on a grand buffet while they sing and dance the night away to the music of the Silver Spears Irish Show band. Sincere sympathy is extended to two great Hibernians from Division 8 in Lawrence who left us since our last issue of the Hibernian Digest - Timothy J. Buckley, long time member of Division 8 and a Past Irishman of the Year, and James F. Retelle, long time Financial Secretary of Division 8 and also a Past Irishman of the Year. May God grant them eternal rest.

Rhode Island News The Rhode Island State Convention joined with the 135th anniversary of the Dennis E. Collins Division 1 of Newport for a gala weekend on September 16-17 in Newport. Rhode Island was honored with the presence of National President Seamus Boyle and National Vice President Brendan Moore. They were accompanied by their wives, Berna Boyle and Eileen Moore, to events beginning with a family cookout on Friday night. President Boyle and VP Moore spoke to many R.I. Hibernians and were able to discuss the philosophy of the Order with people in the Newport community. State President Rick O’Neill was impressed with how well the national officers were received by the general public and has heard from several that Seamus and Brendan have won the hearts of many. More than 80 Hibernians (delegates and observers) attended the state convention on Sept. 17. Boyle and Moore energized the convention with reports on the working of the Order at the national level. The delegates voted to re-elect Rick O’Neill as president and Tim Burns as treasurer. They also voted to elect Ed Kane as vice president and Steve Ferris as secretary for the two-year term.


a remembrance wreath at the grave of Fr. Mychal Judge O.F.M. on Sunday, September 11, at the Holy Seplecure Cemetery in Totowa, NJ, marking the 10th anniversary of the loss of his life at the World Trade Center. The Very Reverend Victor Kennedy, fifth from left, Chaplain of the Hibernians and Pastor of the Parish of the Resurrection, Jersey City, led the Hibernians in a solemn prayer ceremony. Fr. Mychal Judge was a Franciscan Chaplain for the FDNY who immediately responded to the WTC that fatal day on September 11, 2001. Fr. Judge was in residency at St. Francis of Assisi on 31st Street across from FDNY Engine 1, Ladder 24. The AOH of Hudson County named their Division 1 in his memory on May 20, 2003. His bravery and compassion, along with that of many others, will not be forgotten. (Photo by G. Stampoulos.)

Cronin’s Irish Cottage Shop Ireland at Home

Rhode Island State Board, from left, past National and Division Chaplain Rev. George B. McCarthy, National President Seamus Boyle, President Rick O’Neill, National Vice President Brendan Moore, Treasurer Tim Burns, Vice President Ed Kane and Secretary Steve Ferris.

On Saturday evening, the Dennis E. Collins Division Pipe and Drum Band led the Hibernians the quarter mile to St. Augustin Church for Mass celebrated by Rev. John McNulty and concelebrated by the Rev. Francis O’Loughlin, division chaplains. The mass was offered for all living and deceased Hibernians. At a reception afterwards, National President Boyle presented the Collins Division President Robbie Lehane with an award in recognition of the division’s 135th anniversary.

The Mall at Steamtown 300 Lackawanna Avenue Scranton, PA 570-969-2689

Rena Cronin

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

New York News NY Board endorses Moore, McKay, McNabb, McLean By John C. O’Connell, State Director, Publicity Chairman The New York State Board held its semi-annual meeting on October 22 in Schenectady. The day began with the state board’s annual Pro Life Mass, with Deputy National Chaplain Fr. Henry Reid as the main concelebrant. Fr. Reid is also the New York State Chaplain. State President Michael McNabb led the well-attended meeting held afterwards, at which Immediate Past State President Charles (Chip) McLean announced his candidacy for National

Director. The state board endorsed his bid. Pennsylvania’s Denny Donnelly announced he’s running for National Director, and current National Director Jere Cole announced he would seek reelection. Also at the meeting, National Vice President Brendan Moore received a standing-ovation endorsement of the state board for his candidacy for the office of National President. The state board endorsed National Secretary Tom McNabb as well, and current National Treasurer Judge Jim McKay was endorsed for the office of National Vice President. National Director Danny O’Connell

The officers of the NY State Board, from left, President Mike McNabb, Vice President James Burke, Immediate Past President Chip McLean, Treasurer Vic Vogel and Secretary Tim McSweeney at the annual Pro-Life Mass preceding the state board meeting in Schenectady on Oct. 22.

Maryland News

announced he will run for National Treasurer. Later in the day, our able and generous hosts, the Schenectady Division, organized our annual bowling tournament at which many of the finest AOH and LAOH athletes competed. The laughs, the feeling of Hibernian camaraderie, and the fun of the sport made for a great afternoon. The subsequent buffet dinner and tournament awards presentations at the Schenectady Division Hibernian Hall were an informal and happy way to end the day. Oswego Mike Callahan. Public Relations AOH Dean Michael Barry Division 1 in Oswego celebrated their 2nd annual “1/2 Way to St. Patrick’s Day Party” on September 17. Headlining the event was the international Canadian band “Enter the Haggis” (ETH), who just released their 7th album. Each year the Hibernians sponsor a large party at their AOH Hall with bagpipers, step dancers, Irish food and beverages, a bake sale and more. “This year we gave the party a shot of steroids,” said President Tim Kirwan, “by inviting this well known progressive rock/Celtic band. Three music acts headlined the entertainment outside, including 2 local bands and then ETH. Many volunteers came forward to make this well attended event a big suc-

cess. “The weather couldn’t have been better, nor the music and the company,” Mike Callahan, an AOH member that handles public relations for and a member of the AOH declared. It looks like this annual party is here to stay and ETH showed great interest in coming back next year. This division continues to grow monthly, with approximately 250 full members and 150 social members. Scholarship presentation in New York NY Division One, Niagara County, awards a scholarship each year that con-

tinues throughout the four years of high school, so we always have four students, one in each grade. Niagara Catholic High School is the only Catholic high school left in Niagara County. In the photo, from left, are Bill Paterson, past Division President, Principal Robert Difrancesco, recipient Sara Anderson and current Division President Michael McNerney.

California News

By Tim Harvey, State President

By Mick O’Keefe

September brought more fundraising events. I returned from a wonderful vacation in Ireland in time to attend the annual Towson division’s crab feast. A great evening was had eating the famous Maryland steamed blue crabs, drinking Guinness and dancing to the music of Brendan Pelan. A silent auction added to the evening fundraising. The division uses the funds raised for their many charitable works. The next evening took me to Annapolis and the John Barry Bar in O’Callaghan’s Hotel for the Annapolis division’s fundraiser for the Barry Gate and Memorial at the Naval Academy. Food, music and Irish step dancers from the LAOH juniors made it a great event. In attendance were National Director Keith Carney and D.C. Board President Ralph Day, better known to some as Commodore Barry himself. The highlight of the night was a visit and address from Ambassador and Mrs. Michael Collins. October took Past Maryland State President, Leo Welsh and myself to Philadelphia for the National President’s Dinner. We enjoyed the great hospitality of our brother and sister Hibernians in the various Hibernian Halls visited. Everywhere we went we received a warm welcome, great food and often live music. The National Dinner was fabulous and I was touched by the speech Clara Reilly made on accepting the McBride award. Congratulations to President Boyle on a wonderful night and the many honors bestowed upon him for his hard work on behalf of the Order. We also kicked off our Maryland State Board 2012 Multi-Win Lottery Raffle to benefit the Barry Gate and Memorial at McGarvey‘s in Annapolis. With one ticket you have a chance to win multiple times throughout the year. A WINNER EVERY DAY! The daily winning number is based on the Maryland 3-digit evening lottery number. Only 1,000 tickets are sold at $25 each. The daily prize is $25 with special prizes awarded on St Patrick’s Day, Christmas, New Years and John Barry Day of $200 or $500. For additional information or to purchase a ticket contact George Hogan (410) 757-5714.

We had a great turnout of our Orange County Hibernians for the AOH California State Convention in September. I would like to thank all the Brothers who showed their support for Dan McGowan, and his Long Beach Brothers. These Brothers continue to show up in full force and represent the Order with style and grace, even with their Division being challenged once again without a valid reason. I was really proud of all the AOH Officers who stood up and stated their opinion in the State meeting in support our Long Beach Brothers, especially Chuck Gildea, Pat Cahill, Jeff Gallagher, Pat Bergin, Kieran Scott, Eric Linden, and Jerry O’Keefe. For once, I was not the bully in the room, but I did add my two cents when it was needed. This was one of the proudest moment I have had as a Hibernian over the last 20 years. Many thanks to all the Brothers who donated their own money to stock the Hospitality room, especially Ken Jamieson, Jerry O’Keefe, David McKenna, Eric Linden, Austin Daly, Chris Wittman, Kieran Scott, Tim Weston, and all the other Brothers who donated for the final refreshments run on Saturday night. Thank you so much. On top of this, the AOH California State Board election results was unanimous and went in our favor with our own Ken Jamieson being elected State President; Patrick Cahill, State Vice President; Jeff Gallagher, State Secretary; and Daniel McGowan, State Treasurer. Please show your support for incoming California State Board. Many thanks to the Ed McEntee and Jerry DeRyan, the outgoing State Board officers for their unwavering support. And one final accolade to my wife, Melanie, who put up with all the changes at the last minute to ensure we had a successful Convention. Well done, my love!

Dave Aland of Annapolis Division and “Commodore Barry” (President Ralph Day) welcome Ambassador and Mrs. Collins to Barry fundraiser.

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

AOH California State Convention: Pictured from left are Andrew Manning, Eric Linden, Michael O’Keefe Jr., David McKenna, Daniel McGowan, Mick O’Keefe, Daniel Murphy, Chris Wittman, Daniel Murphy, Kevin Spaeth, Paul Gilbrook, Austin Daly, Jerry O’Keefe, Bob Hannan, Ken Jamieson, Jim Walsh, and Mark Mowen.


Missouri News Half Way to St Patrick’s Day in Western Missouri The ninth annual Kansas City Irish Fest took place over Labor Day weekend, September 2-4, at the Crown Center Square in Downtown Kansas City. The Kansas City Irish Fest celebrates the city’s deep Irish roots with seven music stages featuring traditional music and Celtic rock from international, national and locally-known bands such as Gaelic Storm, Scythian, Kila, The Killdares and hometown Celtic rockers and the city’s favorite band, The Elders. The Irish Fest also features a comedy stage, heritage displays and workshops, shopping, ethnic food, a massive area just for kids and the city’s largest outdoor Catholic Mass on Sunday morning. Kansas City Irish Fest has been named the “Best Festival” in Kansas City and the “Best Ethnic Festival” many times over in the Kansas City Convention & Visitors Association’s Visitor’s Choice Awards. The Kansas City Irish Fest is also the third-largest Irish festival in the nation, with more than 100,000 people attending in 2010 and with reports that 2011 surpasses all previous attendance records. This is a great place to meet Hibernian brothers from throughout the Mid-West who were working the festival and enjoying all the great entertainment. Weston, Missouri, founded in 1837, is just 30 minutes north of Kansas City, and 30 minutes south of St. Joseph. The town of Weston was the boyhood home of Buffalo Bill Cody and is the home to the Weston Irish Festival at

Pennsylvania News Pennsylvania’s Cumberland II, General William Thompson Division has partnered with the Department of Defense 60th Anniversary of the Korean War Commemoration Committee, and has installed an Ambassador to honor Service Members who served during the Korean Conflict. It’s as easy as sending the Division your name, branch of service (if you wish) and a mailing service. The Division had a great response during its partnership with the U.S. Army and Freedom Team Salute. We now want to carry this to all service members from the Korean Conflict. We have already started working with the Churches in our county and also the American Legion, AMVETS and VFWs, and we extend the invitation to you to receive your Certificate of Appreciation from a grateful nation, and your fellow Hibernians. Follow us on The 2011 Defense Authorization Bill authorized the establishment of the Department of Defense 60th Anniversary of the Korean War Commemoration Committee, (DoD 60th AKWCC). The Committee is dedicated to thanking and honoring all the Veterans of the Korean War, their families and especially those who lost

O’Malley’s Pub, founded in 1842, where the Festival was celebrated October 14th through the 16th in 2011. The Weston Irish Festival began in 2000 and has grown to a three-day event of all things Irish. The Irish Fest brings over 10,000 festival goers to this town of a little over 1,000 on the three-acre property that encompasses O’Malley’s Irish Pub, American Boman Restaurant and the Weston Brewing Company. The fest served delicious Irish fare, had 15 acts on four stages, including many of the premiere acts in Irish music. Headlining this year’s event were the Screaming Orphans, The Elders, Enter the Haggis, Barleyjuice and The Mickey Finns. In addition, many local Irish entertainers, Irish dancers, and marching bands, the St Joseph, Missouri, loved ones in that war. During the next three years, the Committee will honor the service and sacrifice of Korean War Veterans, commemorate the key events of the war, and educate Americans of all ages about the historical significance of the Korean War. The commemorative committee’s programs and activities will work to accomplish the following objectives: 1. To thank and honor Veterans of the Korean War, including members of the Armed Forces who were held as prisoners of war or listed as missing in action, for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States. 2. To thank and honor the families of Veterans of the Korean War for their sacrifices and contributions, especially families who lost a loved one in the Korean War. 3. To highlight the service of the Armed Forces during the Korean War and the contributions of Federal agencies and governmental organizations that served with, or in support of the Armed Forces. 4. To pay tribute to the sacrifices and contributions made on the home front by people of the United States during the Korean War. 5. To provide the people of the United States with a clear understanding and appreciation of the lessons and history of the Korean War. 6. To highlight advances in technology, science and

Illinois News Chicago AOH Division 32 on Chicago’s Northwest side recently announced Fr. Daniel McCarthy, Division Chaplain for the past 10 years, as the recipient of their Ken Sullivan Hibernian of the Year award for 2011. The announcement was made following Fr. McCarthy’s celebration of Mass at our annual picnic at Bunker Hill on September 10. The award was given in recognition of his outstanding service to the organization and Fr. McCarthy was both surprised and extremely grateful for the award. Fr. McCarthy recently retired after 44 years in the priesthood. He celebrated his retirement Mass at St. Tarcissus Parish in Chicago, where he has served as Pastor for the past 11 years. The Mass was celebrated with six Brother-Priest concelebrants and many friends and family members participating in the celebration. A party was held following Mass with parishioners from St. Tarcissus and each of Fr. McCarthy’s other assignments in attendance. Representation from Division 32 was also strong. Fr. McCarthy was ordained a Deacon in


June 1966 and served his Deacon internship at Maryville Academy in Des Plaines, IL. He was ordained to the priesthood in April 1967 after attending St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in suburban Mundelein. His first assignment was as Assistant Administrator for Angel Guardian Orphanage in Chicago. He also served at several other parishes including as Associate Pastor at Our Lady of Victory, St. Mathias and St. Tarcissus and Pastor at St. Timothy and St. Tarcissus Parishes. Division 32’s Annual Picnic on September 190th was an enjoyable day

Hibernians have been helping work the festival since its inception in 2000. No trip to Kansas City, Mo., would be complete without stopping at Browne’s Irish Market established in 1887 noted as North America’s oldest Irish business and proclaimed this by the Irish Trade Board. It is considered to be Kansas City’s oldest retail business. When they first opened, proprietors Ed and Mary Flavin, both immigrants from County Kerry, conversed with locals and traded pennies for cured hams and embroidered pieces of lace. Flavins Market, at 27th and Jefferson in the front of the family home, was a place for neighbors to meet. It was Ed and Mary’s aim to provide quality food, wares and Irish hospitality to their many customers and friends. Accommodating their growing needs, in 1901 the Flavins built a new store on the outskirts of town — at the corner of 33rd and Pennsylvania. Their daughter, Margaret, and her husband, James R. (Jim) Browne, also from Kerry, continued the family business after their marriage in 1915, keeping the same friendly atmosphere. Now, the fifth generation can be seen bringing Irish smiles to customers and carrying on the tradition at the store. Kerry Browne and her husband, John McClain, have owned Browne’s Irish Market & Deli since July 1, 1981, when they bought it from her mother, Margie Blake Browne. The store is split between the deli and a section in the building that sells Irish imports, Irish foods, clothing and house wares. St Patrick’s Day brings long lines of customers and also to their street festival held every June. medicine related to military research conducted during the Korean War. 7. To recognize contributions and sacrifices made by the allies of the United States during the Korean War. — Bill Irwin Recording Secretary/Editor, Thompson Rifles. Pennsylvania’s Lt. Gov. addresses National Board

James Cawley, Lt. Governor of the state of Pennsylvania, and president of AOH Division 5, Bucks County, addressed the AOH National Board meeting on October 8. The state’s governor, Tom Corbett, is also a member of the AOH.

with family and friends. Thanks to Picnic Chairs Pat Flaherty, Mike Hill and Ed Morley, and to Bernie Byrne and family for manning the grills and providing the Guinness, and the LAOH for their tasteful decorations. We also announced the winners of our five $500 scholarships for Catholic education from those grade school and high school participants in our Soup Kitchen, Misericordia Candy Day or other charitable events. The winners were Tom Hoffman Jr., Sean Moriarty, Pat Moriarty, Joseph Suerth and Cordelia Bella. Division 32 again helped with the parking duties for Misericordia’s Annual Family Fest the day after our picnic. Misericordia cares for over 650 developmentally disabled adult and children at their facility on Chicago’s North side. This one-day event raises over $1,000,000 for the critical support Misericordia provides to those most in need. Since the event was held on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, a moment of silence was observed at noon for those who died or whose lives were forever changed on that day. Thanks also to Division 59 for hosting the Illinois State Convention in Alsip on September 17. The new State Officers were

voted in and National Director Danny O’Connell spoke to the group about Membership. Aidan Cronin, the new Irish Consul General, also made his first public speech in his new role at the State Convention.

Danny O’Connell presented two awards during the Illinois convention for divisions that donated $1,000 or more to the FFAI Christmas Appeal. Receiving their framed Bloody Sunday Vindicated poster from O’Connell are Sean O’Dowd, President of Chicago Division #32, on the left, and Dann Haney, President of Peoria Division # 1 on the right. Congratulations to these divisions for continued great work on behalf of Freedom for All Ireland.

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Ladies Hibernian News President’s Greetings from … Margaret Hennessy

enjoyed meeting the recipient of the Sean MacBride Humanitarian Award Clara Reilly. I traveled to South Carolina for their State Convention and observed our newest Degree Team from South Carolina as they exemplified the Degrees of our Where has the time Order. We presented our donation to gone, it seems as Notre Dame and met the recipients of the though I just finished Hibernian Scholarship. I will be attending putting the Christmas Georgia’s State Convention in November. Decorations away and Thank you for all your invitations to it’s time to start thinkattend your conventions, I tried to attend ing about Thanksas many as possible. It was great to meet giving and Christmas. the Ladies from around the country and Time flies when you see the wonderful things that they accomare having fun. My Margaret Hennessy plish in the name of the Ladies Ancient family and I wish you Order of Hibernians. Just a reminder that all a Happy Thanksgiving and a Blessed with the State Conventions completed for and Holy Christmas. this year, a copy of your newly revised It was so nice to see so many State bylaws needs to be sent to me for my sigPresidents and Observers at the interim nature. board meeting as well as the Officers of the While you enjoy the Holidays give National Board. Thank you for all your thanks for all of the gifts that God has well wishes and thoughtfulness at my tes- given us and remember to say a prayer for timonial dinner. our deceased brother & sister Hibernians I attended the AOH National and all of our troops that are serving our President’s dinner in Pennsylvania and Country.

Timothy Jaccard spoke at Division 7, East Islip, NY on October 16 about his involvement in Safe Haven, a secure place for newborns. He has been active in seeing legislation passed in all 50 states and D.C. that designates specific locations as “safe places” for desperate parents to surrender their unharmed newborns legally and confidentially. Jaccard is the founder and president of the AMT Children of Hope Foundation. He is a full-time paramedic for the Nassau County Police Department on Long Island, NY.

Suffolk County NY LAOH Division 7 Catholic Action chair Leslie Lanigan, left, LAOH President Charlene Gibbs, Guest Speaker Timothy Jaccard, Vic Vogel AOH Div. 7 (also NYS AOH Treasurer) and Catholic Action John Owen during a presentation on Safe Haven.

Illinois News The Illinois Delegates elected their State Officers for the 2011-2013 Term of Office at their 54th Biennial State Convention held in Alsip Illinois, September 16-17, 2011. Front row, Kay Grillot, Irish Historian, Patricia A. O’Connell, President, Eileen D. O’Connell, Treasurer, Jeanne Armstrong, Missions

Providing Safe Haven

Connecticut News & Charities Officer. Back row, M J “Robin” Hartman, ice President, Norma Mal, Catholic Action Officer, and Frances Farraher—Secretary.

Ladies AOH National Board Rev. John V. Ahern . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Chaplain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sr. Phylis O’Down, OP . . . . . . . . . .Deputy Chaplain . . . . . . . . . Margaret Hennessy . . . . . . . . . . . . .President . . . . . . . . . . . . . Maureen Shelton . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Vice President . . . . . . . . . . . . Mary Hogan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Secretary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Theresa O’Connell . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Treasurer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Patricia A. O’Connell . . . . . . . . . . . .Irish Historian . . . . . . . . Sarah Mains . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Missions & Charities . . . . . Carol J. Sheyer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Catholic Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kathleen Conway . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Asst. Digest Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . Anne-Marie Nyhan-Doherty . . . . . . . .Immigration & Legislation. . . . . Patricia Rattigan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .FFAI . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Patricia E. Doyle, Esq . . . . . . . . . . .Legal Counsel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Elizabeth Colgan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .LAOH Webmaster . . . . . . . Agnes O’Leary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Fundraising Chair . . . . . . . . . Peggy Comish . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Supply Chair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sheila Lynch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Auditor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mary Ellen Pelletier . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Jewelry Chair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

PAST NATIONAL PRESIDENTS Mary Ryan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Marlboro, MA Dorothy Weldon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Monongahela, PA Mary T. Leathem . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Convention Chair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Troy, NY Eleonore Grimley . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Alexandria, VA Mary B. Dolan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .North Brookfield, MA Peggy Cooney . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Pittsburgh, PA Mary Paglione . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . St. Lucie West, FL Kathie Linton . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Notre Dame Chair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Uniontown, OH Terry Kelleher . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Notre Dame Chair . . . . . . . . . . . . Redwood City, CA Mary B. McEnery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Providence, RI Sheila M. Clifford . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Waterbury, CT

National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

The Waterbury LAOH and AOH recently honored Sue Gilmore and Bill Scully and by all accounts, everyone who attended had a good time. The Meriden Divisions held another successful Ceili in October and have plans for another in the Spring. Fairfield County recently held their County Convention. Congratulations and best wishes to the new Officers. Several Masses for Deceased Members are planned for November in Bridgeport, Stamford and Meriden. Waterbury will be holding a Pancake Breakfast to raise funds to purchase needed items for homeless veterans moving into apartments. The Meriden Ladies recently shipped out goodies to the Troops. They will also be sponsoring a family through the United Way again this year for Christmas. They will be hosting Santa on December 17th to surprise all their future Hibernians. The newly formed Hartford LAOH, along with the Hartford AOH has volunteered to host the State Convention in 2013. Not an easy undertaking and they should be congratulated for being willing to “dive” right in.

Indiana News by Alice Davis Our Lady of Knock Division 1, Indianapolis, has had and will have a full calendar of events September through December. Members of the Division had a booth at Indy Irish Fest that proved to be a successful fundraiser. Alice Davis presented slides of the trip to the 2011 Bloody Sunday Commemoration. She, Jeane Russell, and Nancy Tindall Sponsel worked on seven presentations in the cultural center during the three-day festival. Division Members were invited to participate at the Cathedral of Sts. Peter and Paul in the celebration of the Mass before the Right to Life Chain, the first Sunday of October. As they stood in the Life Chain holding signs against abortion, members recited the rosary. A second fundraiser sponsored by the Division during October sold Celtic jewelry for holiday gifts. At the October meeting, a fun Halloween party was planned by Eva Ricard and Stephanie Thibo. The decorations were festive; the desserts fabulous, the games fun and the silly hats were great. The Division members will volunteer at Franklin Library at a Halloween party for youngsters as part of the Indy Irish Fest Education and Outreach Project. Children will make appropriate crafts and adults will learn interesting facts about Ireland. Katie Tobin has been nominated to fill the Office of Missions and Charities. Voting will take place at the November meeting. The Division Christmas Party on December 7 features two of our members who will lead the carols. Members will host a Christmas Tea at The Caring Place, an adult day care center of the archdiocese on December 9. December 28, Feast of the Holy Innocents, will be celebrated with a Mass at the Cathedral followed by a luncheon. 21

Vice President

News from your Irish Historian

By Maureen Shelton

By Patricia A. O’Connell

It was so nice to see once again so many of our ladies at the Interim Board Meeting and the Testimonial Dinner of our National President, Margaret Hennessy. It was also so nice to see so many people at the Testimonial Dinner for AOH President, Seamus Boyle. One of the highlights of the evening was the presentation of the Sean McBride Award. The recipient, Clara Reilly of Belfast, was the first woman to receive this award. She is a very special woman with such faith and courage. It was such a privilege to meet her! Clara brought quilts made by families in remembrance of the victims. Each square was unique as it related to a loved one. Clara spoke of one particular square that was made by a grandmother in remembrance of her fifteen-year-old grandson. He had come over to her house to help her put up her Christmas Tree when he was shot and killed shortly after leaving her home. That woman never put another Christmas tree up but on his square, she has a Christmas tree. Each quilt was made up of forty-nine squares and put on display around the banquet room. By the time you read this, I will have observed our newest Degree Team, Daughters of Erin from South Carolina, confer Degrees at their State Convention. It is always a pleasure to enjoy their Southern hospitality. If your State is interested in organizing a Degree Team, please contact me. It is so important that all our members take their Degrees. Our Juniors are staying very active after the summer break. If you have Juniors in your State, please support their endeavors. They are our future and need our encouragement and support. As we approach this special season, I am so thankful that we live in a country that gives us the freedom to practice our Catholic faith. Please remember to pray for those who are so far from home this Thanksgiving and Christmas. Although the LAOH spreads its works of charity for those in need at home and abroad, prayers are always needed. I wish you a very Blessed Christmas and New Year,

I send my greetings to all of you as you continue to do good works in the name of our Order. By the time you receive this edition of the Hibernian Digest, all of our LAOH State Conventions will be completed. I congratulate the officers elected to serve for the 2011-2013 Term of Office and those appointed to serve for the 2011-2013 Term of Office. To those of you who completed your State Officer or Appointee duties, I say thank you for your service. It was my pleasure to be able to spend time with so many of you in Long Island, NY at the Interim National Board Meeting and at National President Margaret Hennessy’s Testimonial Dinner where we recognized Margaret Hennessy’s service to our Order. Your presence at these events strengthens our Friendship, Unity, & Christian Charity. As many of you have questioned the need to complete the Annual History Reports at the Division, County Board, and State Board Levels, I discussed this matter with the National Board members at the Interim National Board. At this time, I am informing all of you that the Annual History Reports are to be completed at the end of the calendar year. This report at each level summarizes the history of the Order at that level for the given calendar year. This document may be shared with any entity who wants to know who we are and what we do each year. Yes, some of the information requested on the Annual History Report is also provided on other forms required to be completed by various officer holders. This fact was taken into consideration when the timelines for the completion of the Annual History Reports were set. Thus, the Irish Historian is able to secure most of the information requested on the Annual History Report by gathering the data from other officers at her Division, County Board, or State Board level. All Division, County Board, and State Board Annual Reports for each State are to be submitted to the National Historian. The National Historian will complete an electronic file of all of these documents to be maintained as the History of the Order for the given calendar year. I will be communicating directly with State Presidents and State Irish Historians in late November to remind them to work within their State to complete these reports. I encourage all members to be aware of the timelines for the completion of these Annual History Reports: (1) Division Level Annual History Reports are to be completed by January 31 and forwarded to the County Board Irish Historian, if applicable, or to the State Irish Historian. (2) County Board Level Annual History Reports are to be completed by February 28 and forwarded along with all of the Division Level Annual History Reports to the State Irish Historian. 3) State Board Level Annual History Report is to be completed by March 31 and forwarded along with all of the County Board Annual History Reports and all Division Annual History Reports to the National Irish Historian. It was good to see many of you in Philadelphia PA at AOH National President Seamus Boyle’s Testimonial Dinner. In addition to recognizing Seamus Boyle’s service, the Sean McBride Humanitarian Award was presented to Clara Reilly, and the final 175thAnniversary celebration of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in America was completed. I pray that you will enjoy some special time during the Thanksgiving season to give thanks for the many blessings you, your family, and your Hibernian Sisters share. Let us give thanks for those to serve to keep our country free and for their families who make such sacrifices for us too. May each of us make some special time to prepare for the coming of Jesus during Advent.

South Carolina News The South Carolina Ladies of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Inc., welcomed both Margaret Hennessy, National President of the LAOH, Inc., and Maureen Shelton, National Vice President of the LAOH to our State Convention October 21 - 23 in Charleston, SC. They attended our workshop, the Degree Team Ceremony where degrees were conferred on 26 Ladies, and Margaret installed the following new State Officers: President Mary Conlon, Vice President Cheryl Daniels, Secretary Jennifer Davis, Treasurer Brigid Allen, Irish Historian Elizabeth Farrelly, Missions & Charity Ursula Pearce and Catholic Acton Jane Daly. The South Carolina Degree Team, Daughters of Erin is a new Degree Team with members from Our Lady of Knock, Charleston and St. Brigid Division of Myrtle Beach. The group was formed in May, 2011 and have been invited to Conventions in Wilmington, NC and Charleston, SC. The team will travel in and about SC, NC, GA and FL.

Washington, DC News Daughters Of Erin Officers Sylivia Luther, Treasurer Maureen McEvoy, Director, Meredith Daniels, Secretary . Pictured Top row, left to right Meredith Daniels, Kathleen McMillian, Margaret Van Loan, Deb Schiable, Cheryl Daniels Ginger Frederick, Ursula Pierce , Betsy Farrelly, Sally Byrnes, Jennifer Davis, Sylvia Luther, Mary Conlon, Rose Kavanagh, Brigid Allen, Dinah Britnell, DoloresAnn Leslie, Maureen McEvoy, Margaret McGouey, Marie Reilly.

Missions and Charities by Sarah Mains Now that all the State Conventions are over, I want to congratulate all the incoming officers and thank the outgoing officers. You have done a great job, I attended the National interim board meeting and National President Margaret Hennessy’s Testimonial dinner in September. At the board meeting the Missions and Charities checks for the year were approved. The Columban Fathers received $15,000 and $7,000 in Mass Stipends. The Columban Sisters received $10,000 and Precious Live Shelter received $5,000. Thank you Ladies for your generosity. The donation form has changed and is hopefully simpler. The new form is on the LAOH National web site. I will be mailing a letter and a copy of the new form shortly. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me. I wish everyone a Happy and Holy Holiday Season.


By Peggy Dee Our Ladies joined forces with the men and attended the ordination and first Mass of Rev. Michael Paris on June 18. The men of Division 5 have supported Father Michael as he came through the seminary. Each one of us stood in line and received his blessing after he celebrated his first Mass. He has been assigned to St. Patrick’s Church in Rockville, Maryland. We were delighted to have supported one of the first fundraisers for the John Barry monument, which was held in Baltimore on Saturday, August 13. We were graced with the presence of the national officers at this event. “Let us meeting at the Barry Gate,” will be our slogan from now on and we are so grateful to have everyone’s support. After the opening Mass at the Chapel of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, we had our State Convention on Saturday, October 29. Congratulations and best wishes to our new officers: Gail Dapolito, Jean Campenni, Maria Humphries, Anne DeCourcy, Mary Corkery, Mary Sweeney and Peggy Dee. We look forward to a good, productive two years ahead and hope to recruit new members.

Nollaig Sona duit Merry Christmas National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Massachusetts News Continuing a Tradition National Board Jewelry Appointee, Mary Ellen Pelletier continued a family tradition. She was awarded National Life Membership at the LAOH National Board Interim Meeting on Long Island, New York on September 10, 2011. Mary Ellen is a member of Division 8 in Lawrence, MA and is a Past Massachusetts State President. Shown with Mary Ellen is her mom, Mary Nyhan, also a member of Division 8 and a Past Essex County President. Mrs. Nyhan was awarded her National Life Membership in 2009. Lowell Division 1 Celebrate 25th Anniversary Wednesday, October 5, 2011, Lowell Division 1 of the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians, Inc. attended a 5:30 Mass at the Immaculate Conception Church, Lowell in celebration of their 25th Anniversary. Rev. John W. Hanley, O.M.I. is former Pastor of St. Williams Parish in Tewksbury, MA and former LAOH Hibernian Chaplain for the Ladies over many years. Rev. Hanley is now Retreat Director of the Oblate Retreat House in Willimantic, CT so the Ladies were fortunate to have him officiate at their 25th Anniversary celebration. Immediately following Mass, all the ladies enjoyed a catered buffet held in the church hall, which was colorfully decorated with bright yellow mums to embrace the fall season. During the last 25 years, the ladies have been hard at work organizing and supporting many fundraising events that support scholarship funds and many local charities that write to us for help each year. The ladies are certainly a positive influence in the Lowell community and each year they strive to make a difference wherever they see the need. Congratulations Ladies, thank you and keep up the good work.

Georgia News Congratulations to our Division President Sharon Vincent upon receiving the Lady Hibernian of the year award. This award is based on participation in the Division, fundraisers, performance, charitable works or social events, serving the local community and serving the church through involvement in ministry, music, choir, board work, or fulfilling basic parish needs. Sharon actively participates in the division and is in her second term as our LAOH President. She has brought style, grace and poise to our division and she has an infectious laugh. Under her leadership we have added several new members and we actively support the Catholic Social Services by helping Sister Janet Roddy get food, clothes and shoes for those that need to work and can’t find the means or apparel to do so. Sharon exemplifies all fundraising and always finds a way to get the job done. She also steps up to the plate to help the Men’s AOH with the Catholics Come Home program by engaging the LAOH to supply time, food and drinks to all that attend to the First Thursday at the AOH Tent by the church. Sharon serves very actively in her church through her leadership of being a Eucharistic Minister, she also serves the homebound ministry for the sick, is a certified Bereavement Counselor for the bereaved ministry, attends daily mass and has been a member of St. Mary on the Hill Catholic Church for over 30 years. It is truly an honor to have Sharon as our Division President. She is so dedicated to the LAOH and her husband, Gerald Vincent is the AOH Division president. Sharon and her husband both exemplify Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity. Sharon is a blessing and no one deserved the Lady Hibernian Award more. Sharon is the Director of Professional Nursing Practice and Education at the Medical College of Georgia. She is truly a southern lady who originally hails from Owosso, Michigan. The upcoming Georgia LAOH and AOH State Convention will be held in Savannah on November 11- 13. We are looking forward to having representation from our National Officers. The Convention will take place at the Savannah Marriott. For further information and deadlines to attend the convention, please contact Georgia State President, Dee Ramp at

New York News LAOH Division 1, Lowell MA – 25th Anniversary Dinner Celebration Left to right front row: Past Division President’s Eileen Sullivan, Jeannine Dunn and Anita Campbell. Left to right back row: Past Division President’s Maureen Barter, Carolyn MacDonald, Marian O’Brien, Noreen Conlon, presiding Division President Joyce Burgess and Hibernian Chaplain Rev. John W. Hanley, O.M.I., former Pastor of St. Williams Parish in Tewksbury, MA and former LAOH Hibernian Chaplain for many years. Rev. Hanley is now located in Willimantic, CT as is presently Director of the Oblate Retreat House.

Pennsylvania News The residents of Visitation Home, a Catholic shared living residence for people with developmental disabilities in Hamilton, NJ, were treated to a Philadelphia Phillies baseball game by the members of Philadelphia Division #88 - Daniel Boyle. They had 20 residents and chaperones along with members and friends of Division 88 who cheered the Phillies from the rooftop bleachers. Division 88 will also have the residents from Visitation Home at their hall for a holiday party during the Christmas Season. The Division’s Thanksgiving food drive will be benefit the Visitation Home, Saint Veronica’s school in North Philadelphia, and needy families suggested by the members. At St. Veronica’s, eighty percent of the families live below the federal poverty line. They are desperately trying to keep the school open where the students can feel safe in a declining neighborhood. Each year the Division donates food baskets for families and tuition assistance to St. Veronica’s on behalf of the Daniel Boyle Scholarship fund.

Patricia Moynihan of Suffolk’s new Division 4 receives the Division Charter from Suffolk County President Pam Larkin Schiavarelli, Also present is Winnie Morrisey, Immediate Past President of Suffolk County.

Della Weissenberger of Division 3, Suffolk County was awarded Life Membership at the Interim Board meeting in September. Here, Della is presented with the certificate and sash by Suffolk County President Pam Larkin Schiavarelli.

Ohio News The Junior LAOH Division of Mahoning County selected the NY Fire Fighter Michael Lynch Memorial Foundation Scholarship for their Service Project donation. What followed was that additional donations were added to their check. They were grateful and appreciative for the additional financial support of the scholarship program by the Ancient Order of Hibernian’s Mahoning County Division # 6. They gave the Juniors a generous check to send with their check. Established in Memory of New York City Firefighter Michael Lynch of Ladder 32, the Foundation was set up by Michael Lynch’s family following the 9/11 attacks. He was one of 10 children of Jack and Kathleen Lynch. The Foundation, a 501(c)3 public charity, has raised over 2 million dollars and granted over 96 college scholarships to deserving students. The Scholarships are for children of parents lost on 9-11 and children of NYC firefighters and children affected by other disasters. National Hibernian Digest, November-December 2011

Enjoying the evening at Margaret Hennessy’s Testimonial Dinner left to right Joan Ceconi, Division 11, Tarrytown, NY., Eileen Moore, Division 3, Pearl River, NY, Kitty Geissler, Division 11, Tarrytown, NY, Mary Gorman Division 11, Tarrytown, NY. 23


Announcing the Ancient Order of Hibernians’ 175th Anniversary Members’ Photo & Story Album




2012 AOH & LAOH National Convention Turning Stone Resort & Casino Verona, New York

Monday, July 9th – Thursday July12th ! Monday, July 9th- Opening Mass, “Taste of New York” Icebreaker Reception ! Tuesday, July 10th- Free Night, enjoy one of three events organized by local committee ! Wednesday, July 11th- “Irish Night” ! Thursday, July 12th- Closing Mass followed by Installation Banquet Rooms can be reserved now by calling 1-800-771-7711 and mentioning “Ancient Order of Hibernians” for our convention rate of $115 a night. This room rate is available on Sunday night as well. Hotel accommodations for our event can only be made by telephone. More information regarding the package, event tickets and registration will be available in the next issue of The Digest. A golf tournament scheduled for Monday, July 9th as well as three options for Tuesday night’s “Free Night” that include a Pub Tour in downtown Syracuse, dinner cruise on Skaneateles Lake and Irish music in the Showroom at Turning Stone. Turning Stone Resort is a premier golf destination that also offers full service gaming, gift shops, spa/treatment services, pools and indoor/outdoor tennis courts. Contact Liam McNabb, Convention Chairman, with any questions at (518) 489-1752 or via email at or go to and click on the convention logo for more information.

The National Hibernian Digest - Nov-Dec 2012  
The National Hibernian Digest - Nov-Dec 2012  

THe AOH Official Newspaper