25TH NOVEMBER 2004
STATEMENT OF MOST REV WILLIE WALSH BISHOP OF KILLALOE
ON THE DEATH OF FR JOHN HANNON IN KENYA
“Fr Hannon’s death is a reminder to all of us of the extraordinary commitment
and faith of all our Irish missionaries throughout the world” – Bishop Walsh
Like many people, I am shocked and saddened at the news that Fr John Hannon
has been murdered in Kenya.
It is hard to believe that the life and ministry of this dedicated priest could
have been ended in such an untimely manner.
I offer my most sincere sympathy to his family, neighbours and friends and to
his brother priests in the SMA order and assure them of my prayers at this time.
Fr Hannon’s death is a reminder to all of us of the extraordinary commitment
and faith of all our Irish missionaries throughout the world. May we continue
to support them in every way possible, and to keep them in our prayers.
Bishop of Killaloe
25th November 2004
Martin Long Director of Communications (086 172 7678)
Brenda Drumm Communications Officer (087 233 7797)
NOTES TO EDITORS:
* Fr John Hannon (65) was originally from Newmarket-on-Fergus, Co Clare and
was a member of the Society of African Missions (SMA) working in the Matasia
Parish in the Diocese of Ngong about 25km from Nairobi, Kenya.
* Fr Hannon is the eight Irish priest/religious to be murdered abroad
1. August 2001 – Fr Rufus Halley (Missionary Society of St Columba)
murdered in Philippines;
2. March 2002 – Fr Declan O’Toole (Mill Hill Missionaries), murdered
3. November 2002 – Fr Declan Collins (Salesians Don Bosco), murdered in
South Africa in November 2002;
4. December 2002 – Sr Theresa Egan, murdered by gang in Church in St Lucia
on New Year’s Eve 31/12/2002;
5. March 2003 – Sr Philomena Fogarty (Franciscan Missions) – abducted
and murdered in Georgia, US in March 2003
6. May 2003 – Fr Manus Campbell (Franciscan Missionary) – murdered in
South Africa May 2003
7. December 2003 – Archbishop Michael Courtney (Papal Nuncio), murdered
in Burundi, Africa on 29th December 2003
8. November 2004 – Fr John Hannon (Society of African Missions-SMA)
murdered in Kenya.