Information for media on the funeral liturgy for Aidan O’Driscoll RIP

15 Dec 2016

  • Media

At 1.00pm today the funeral Mass for the late Mr Aidan O’Driscoll RIP, late of Glenheights Park, Ballyvolane, Cork will be celebrated in Saint Oliver’s Church, Ballyvolane, in the parish of Blackpool/The Glen/Ballyvolane, Diocese of Cork & Ross.  Parish Priest Father John O’Donovan will be the chief celebrant and will preach the homily at the Mass.  Father O’Donovan has requested that all media queries related to the liturgy are to be put to the Catholic Communications Office in Maynooth.  After the Mass, Mr O’Driscoll’s remains will be interred in Saint Catherine’s Cemetery, Kilcully.

As the church has a limited capacity, attendance today is reserved for family, loved ones and parishioners.  Out of respect for the solemnity of the Mass, and to provide privacy and space to the O’Driscoll family, media representatives are asked not to use camera equipment within the church or on its grounds.

  • Mass

Please see below information for media on the funeral liturgy of Mr Aidan O’Driscoll RIP:

Chief mourners

Fiancée and best friend, Marion, daughter Saoirse, son Chulann, mother Nuala, brother Mark, sisters Nicola and Ciara, nephews, aunts, uncles, relatives and a large circle of friends.


Music will be performed by friends of Aidan’s sister Nicola, from the Cork City Music College.

Presentation of symbols before the commencement of Mass

Nicola, sister: picture of Aidan with Saoirse and Chulann.

Ciara, sister: football boots.

Mark, brother: betting slip.

Introduction at the start of Mass

Many years ago, as a young priest in west Belfast, I said the funeral Mass of a young man who died as a result of a shooting.

Looking back over those years, I remember the great loss of that young man and the pain, hurt, loneliness and the grief it caused to those who loved him.

The futility of violence in all its shapes and forms, but especially the loss of human life and the pain it leaves behind.

The years have passed by since that funeral, but with the shooting of Aidan last Wednesday, those feelings that I experienced many years ago re-emerge with his death, and that is the sacredness of human life – the hurt, pain and emptiness that it causes to those who loved Aidan in this life.

Today, we reach out to God with his loved ones in this Mass and we pray to the Lord to welcome Aidan onto the shores of eternity.

At the beginning of every Mass, we ask the Lord to forgive our sins, our faults and our failings, and we ask him for the strength to do better in the future.

As we offer up this Mass for Aidan, we ask the Lord to forgive any faults or failings that he may have had during his life on this earth as now we begin our Mass for him.

First Reading

Read by Johnny Cooney, friend.

A reading from the Book of Wisdom 3:1-6, 9.

Second Reading

Read by Thomas Ryan, father of Nicola, Aidan’s fiancée.

A reading from the Book of Apocalypse 7:9-10, 15-17.


A reading from the Gospel according to Luke.

One day when Jesus was praying alone in the presence of his disciples he put this question to them, “who do the crowds say I am?”, and they answered, “John the Baptist; others Elijah; and others say one of the ancient prophets come back to life”. “But you,” he said, “who do you say I am?”  It was Peter who spoke up. “The Christ of God” he said.  But he gave them strict orders not to tell anyone anything about this.

“The Son of Man,” he said, “is destined to suffer grievously, to be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes and to be put to death, and to be raised up on the third day”.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Homily preached by Father John O’Donovan

Jesus asked his disciples in today’s Gospel, “who do the crowd say I am”, and they gave different answers and different interpretations. “But you,” he said, “who do you say I am?”

Then Peter gave his answer.

If we ask that question to people about ourselves, it might be interesting to hear the replies.

If Aidan asked that question, who do you say I am?  Is there even one person who can see me as I really am or who knows me as I really am?

Leo Tolstoy once said, “the people can judge me as they like, they are easily deceived, but I cannot deceive myself”.

For all of us in our own journey of life, to ask that question “who do you say I am?”, the answer is between each individual and God.

Since the death of Aidan last Wednesday, a lot of words have been written and a lot of words have been spoken about him, so here today with his loved ones and his extended family gathered around him in this sacred place and space for this community of Ballyvolane, we commend him to the love, the gentleness and forgiveness of God Our Father when one day we will ask the same for ourselves.

We remember that in death, it is not a door into the dark, it is a dark door into the light, and for Aidan and for his father Martin, and baby brother Joseph who have gone before him, for them and for Aidan we pray for their eternal rest and peace with God.

In the comic strip Peanuts the character Charlie Brown is leaning against the tree talking to Lucy.  She asks him “what do you think security is Charlie Brown?”  Charlie replies, “security is sleeping in the back seat of a car when you are a little child and you have been somewhere with your Mom and Dad and it’s night time.

“You don’t have to worry about anything, your Mom and Dad are in the front seat and they are doing all the worrying. they take care of everything.”

Lucy smiles and says, “that’s cool”.  Charlie Brown, who never ceases to know when to stop, he gets a serious look on his face and says “but it does not last, suddenly you are all grown up and you are never that way again, suddenly it is all over and you never get to sleep in the back seat again, never”.

As they stand there sensing the terrible loneliness Lucy reaches over and says “hold my hand Charlie Brown”.

During our lives and during the life of Aidan, I believe Jesus always has his hand out.

Sometimes we hold it, sometimes we let it go, a short time, a long time, it depends doesn’t it, but his hand is always out, Jesus is saying to all of us, hold my hand.

That story of Lucy and Charlie Brown reminds me of the scene on Calvary where we have the words “Jesus remember me when you come into your Kingdom”.

During our lives, we have to realise our salvation is elsewhere from this world, and in that admission, in that moment of truth, we recognise what really counts and we cry out “Jesus remember me”.

That cry from all of us, and from Aidan, is a recognition of the Kingdom of Jesus and the recognition of His amazing love that can overcome all things in this life and finally even death itself.

Today we remember that Christ will always remember us, Christ will have the last word and make good the final promise and that final promise is eternal life.

Mark (brother of Aidan) and Fiona (sister of Aidan’s fiancée Marion) representing Marion will say a few words about Aidan after Holy Communion.

Today for Aidan we remember the words “Jesus remember me”.

We remember, that Jesus is always holding out that hand of love, friendship and forgiveness for all of us here today.

We remember, that He was always holding out His hand for Aidan during his life on this earth with the invitation: “hold my hand Aidan O’Driscoll.”

And finally in this Mass we remember, with these words of reaching out we pray that Jesus with His strong but loving hands will welcome Aidan onto the shores of eternity, may he now rest in the peace of Christ, Amen.

Prayers of the Faithful

Paul Ryan, brother of Aidan’s fiancée Nicola.

Rachel Dineen, friend of Nicola.

Sean O Neill, Aidan’s cousin.

Aaron Spriggs, football player representing Aidan’s interest in sport.

Brian Twomey, chairman of Delaney’s hurling and football club.

Offertory Procession of the Bread and Wine

Presentation of the offertory gifts by Aidan’s sisters Nicola and Ciara, who will bring the Bread and Wine to the altar.

Card on Remembrance Tree

Aidan’s fiancée Marion will place a card on the Remembrance Tree which is used at every funeral throughout the year in the parish.

Final commendation

Mass will conclude with the final commendation.  This will involve the incensing of the coffin, blessing with holy water and the final prayers.  The recessional will be sung as Aidan’s remains are carried from the church.


For media contact: Catholic Communications Office Maynooth: 00353 (0) 1 505 3017 and Martin Long 00353 (0) 86 172 7678