5 July 2008
Triple Ordination for Dublin Diocese
The ordinations are a high point in the Year of Vocation, which runs for 2008 and comes amid a continuing decline in Vocations, which has proved a challenge for the Archdiocese.
Over 50 priests and hundreds of friends and family members packed St. Mary’s Pro Cathedral in Dublin for the ceremony . Music was by the Dublin Lourdes Choir.
In his homily Archbishop Diarmuid Martin said to the new priests, ” I appeal to you especially to reach out in your ministry to young people, to challenge them to become an active part of the sacramental life of the Church. We see very few young people in our Churches. We have to ask why so many good, idealistic and generous young people seem to find the motivation for their goodness apparently from sources other than the message of Jesus Christ.
Michael Kelly, Dan au Nguyen and Richard Shannon came to the Dublin priesthood from very varied backgrounds.
Fr. Michael Kelly (33) is from Hartstown in Dublin. A son of Mary and the late Noel Kelly he has two brothers and two sisters. Michael left school shortly after his junior cert, forming a rock band with his brother and two friends. Later he would go on to work in IBM in Blanchardstown and also worked as an orderly in the radiotherapy department in St. Luke’s Hospital. During this time he also returned to study his Leaving Cert. He says reading the Gospel of St. Mark affirmed his vocation, which he ignored for years. He entered St. Patrick’s seminary in Maynooth in August, 2002. One of Michael’s first duties as a priest will be to marry his sister, Martina in three weeks time in three weeks time.
Fr. Dan au Nguyen (37) is one of a family of 12 children from Saigon in Vietnam. His eldest brother, John, is a priest of the Diocese of East Anglia, based in Peterborough. Dan studied and qualified as a veterinary surgeon in Saigon. For five years he worked as a food health inspector for the Vietnamese department of health. When he wished to fulfil his Vocation, he was unable to do so in Vietnam due to restrictions imposed on the number of catholic seminarians by the Vietnamese government. His brother John made inquiries on his behalf in Dublin. With no English, a dislike of European weather and food, Dan admits he struggled here at the start. He spent studying English and entered the seminary in Maynooth in August 2001. Among his interests Dan now includes Gaelic football. Today his parents, Ling and Tam au Nguyen have travelled to Dublin for his ordination and they are also joined by family members from the United States.
Fr. Richard Shannon (58) Richard has lived and worked in Dublin for most of his life. He spent 28 years working in the voluntary sector, and 25 as Director of Simon in Ireland working with and on behalf of the country’s homeless community. During this time Richard also studied law, qualifying – but never practicing -as a barrister. When he left Simon, Richard joined the Little brothers of Jesus, an order of Brothers who live in small groups working with the poor and marginalised. With them he spent time in Paris, London and Leeds and worked for three years as a cleaner in Peckham in London. He also spent two years studying for a Masters in Canon Law while in London. Richard has worked in the parish of St. Mary’s Haddington road for the past three years while studying in Milltown Institute. He has five sisters, 11 nephews and five grandnephews and nieces.
Notes to editors:
- The full text of Archbishop Martin’s Homily from today is available at www.dublindiocese.ie
- Photographs from the ceremony are available from [email protected]
- Further information on the Year of Vocation at www.yourvocation.ie
Communications Office 01 -8360723
Email: [email protected]