Death of Most Reverend Michael Russell, retired Bishop of Waterford and Lismore

12 Jan 2009

12 January 2009

Death of Most Reverend Michael Russell, retired Bishop of Waterford and Lismore

The death has taken place of the former Bishop of Waterford and Lismore, Bishop Michael Russell. He was eighty eight years of age and was Bishop of the diocese from 1965 to 1993.  Upon hearing of his death, the Bishop of Waterford and Lismore, Most Rev. William Lee said:

“I am deeply saddened by the news of the death of Bishop Michael Russell, my predecessor as Bishop of Waterford and Lismore and great friend.  Since becoming Bishop of this diocese in July 1993 I have enjoyed and greatly valued his wisdom and support.  Bishop Michael was loved and admired by the people and priests of Waterford and Lismore.  He will be greatly missed by all.  Bishop Michael will be remembered especially for his great love of the Church, his deep faith, his prayerfulness, his devotion to Our Lady, his humility, warmth and approachability.

“Bishop Russell is survived by his brothers Conor and Sean and by his sisters-in-laws, Madge and Maura, his many nephews and nieces. I extend my sincere sympathy to his brothers, his sisters-in-law, his nieces, nephews, his family and friends.”

Bishop Michael Russell was born on 10 December 1920, in Loughmore, Thurles Co Tipperary.  He received his secondary education at the Christian Brothers’ School in Thurles.  He studied for the priesthood in St Patrick’s College, Maynooth, and was ordained on 17 June 1945.  He completed post-graduate studies in 1948 when he was conferred with a Doctorate in Canon Law.  He was then appointed Professor of Moral Theology in St Patrick’s College, Thurles and lectured there until 1965.  He served as Vice-President of the College for a number of years.

His appointment as Bishop of Waterford and Lismore was announced by Pope Paul VI on 8 November 1965.  He was ordained in the Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity, Waterford, on 19 December 1965.  Bishop Russell retired as Bishop of Waterford and Lismore on 27 May 1993.

Funeral arrangements for Bishop Russell will be announced later.


Notes to Editors

  • The Catholic population of Waterford and Lismore is: 136,029.
  • There are 45 Parishes, 85 Catholic Churches.
  • St Otteran, St Carthage and St Declan are Patrons of the diocese.

Further information:
Martin Long, Director of Communications 086 172 7678
Brenda Drumm, Communications Officer 087 233 7797