A Time in History (March 1-7)

March 1

 leddyFR. PETER LEDDY was from St. Paul’s parish, Belfast, Ireland where he was born in 1911. He died at Blanchardstown Hospital, Dublin, on March 1, 1993. Having completed his secondary education at St. Malachy’s College, Belfast, Father Peter went to Dalgan in 1929 where he was ordained priest by Bishop Galvin on December 21, 1935.  Appointed to China, he studied Chinese at the Shanghai Language School and thereafter worked in the Diocese of Hanyang. In 1948 he was appointed to the United States and worked in the Retreat House, Derby, and at Silver Creek. In 1955, Father Peter went to the Philippines where he served in a number of parishes in the Diocese of Ozamis. Ill health forced him to retire to Ireland in 1982 and he spent the remainder of his life with the sick and retired community in Dalgan. He is buried at Dalgan.




 Fr. Peter in his younger days


March 3


 FR. EDWARD A. ALLEN was born in Dublin in 1906. He died in Batang, Philippines on March 3, 2001 having been incapacitated by a stroke three years earlier. Having received his early education at O’Connell Schools, Dublin, Father Eddie joined the Columbans and was ordained priest at Dalgan in December 1930. He was assigned to study Canon Law in Rome and having received his DCL he taught Moral Theology at St. Columbans, Nebraska, where he was Rector [1939-1947]. Assigned to the Philippines in 1949, Father  Eddie spent the next 52 years working in Negros, with the exception of a four year [1951-55] stint as secretary to the Apostolic Nuncio in Manila. He is buried at Kabankalan.



March 4

obrien FR. ANDREW O’BRIEN, a nephew of Columban, Fr. John P. O’Brien (’20), was born in Cork City, Ireland in 1926. He died peacefully on March 4, 2008 at the Dalgan Nursing Home. Having received his secondary education at Christian Brothers’ College, Cork City, he came to Dalgan in 1944 and was ordained there in 1950. Assigned to the Philippines in 1951, Fr Andrew spent the next 20 years on the island of Mindanao where he served in various parishes. He was appointed to the Irish Region in 1969 and for the next eighteen years he assisted in various parishes both in Ireland and in Britain. His health had never been very robust and he retired to Dalgan in 1987 where he worked in the farm office.  Fr. Andrew will be remembered as a man of prayer and deep faith, who had a great devotion to Our Blessed Mother and to the Rosary. He is buried at Dalgan.



March 5

degan FR. CHARLES DEGNAN was born on August 30, 1916 in Chicago, USA and died in Rhode Island Hospital on March 5, 2012. He attended St. Raphael’s School, Chicago before studying at Silver Creek and Bristol, USA from 1931 to 1938. Fr. Charlie was ordained priest in St John’s Cathedral, Buffalo, New York on December 18, 1943. He worked in Chicago during the war years and was assigned to the Philippines in 1948.  He returned to the US in 1951 working on promotion in New York, Chicago and San Diego. From 1971 to 1978 he worked in the Virgin Islands, starting a new parish there, before returning to Chicago for assignments of Mission Education, of Vicar and House superior.  Fr. Charlie went to Bristol, Rhode Island in 2008. He is predeceased by his two Columban brothers, Frs. Fran and Bob. Fr. Charlie is buried in Worth Illinois, USA.



FR. PARIG DIGAN was appointed to the Philippines in 1956. After studying Ilocano, he served in San Marcelino, and later in Cabangan, and San Narciso, Zambales. Parig was a born researcher, extremely dedicated and disciplined. During his years in pastoral work in the Philippines he FR. PARIG DIGAN was appointed to the Philippines in 1956. After studying Ilocano, he served in San Marcelino, and later in Cabangan, and San Narciso, Zambales. Parig was a born researcher, extremely dedicated and disciplined. During his years in pastoral work in the Philippines he would rise long before dawn to continue his reading, before preparing for Mass and the day’s work. Parig died peacefully in the Dalgan Nursing Home on March 5, 2023. He requested that his body be donated for medical research.




March 6


FR. JAMES MOYNIHAN was born in 1924 at Shannon, New Zealand. He died of pneumonia on March 6, 1992 in Maria Regina Hospital in Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines. Before going to St. Columban’s, Wahroonga (near Sydney), in 1949 for his Spiritual year, Father Jim served during World War II as a Wireless Air Gunner in the New Zealand Air Force and Army. He studied philosophy at St. Columban’s, North Essendon, and theology at St. Columban’s, Wahroonga.  Father Jim was ordained priest at St. Patrick’s Church, Palmerston North, New Zealand on December 19, 1955. He went to the Philippines in 1956 where he worked for the next 36 years, mainly in Mindanao. His final years were spent in Cagayan de Oro where he was remarkable for his apostolate in the confessional in the Cathedral.  Father Jim is buried at Divine Shepherd Memorial Park, Cagayan de Oro City.



 Frs. John Wanaurny and James Moynihan in Dinas, Zamboanga del Sur


Tombstone of Fr. James Moynihan at Divine Shepherd Memorial Park, Cagayan de Oro City

March 7


FR. DERMOT WOODS was born at Cootehill, County Cavan, Ireland in 1923.  He was only ten years in priesthood when he died at his sister’s nursing home at Monkstown, County Dublin, on March 7, 1960. Having studied at St. Patrick’s College, Cavan, Father Dermot came to Dalgan seminary to study for priesthood. He was ordained priest in 1950. Assigned to the Philippines, he worked in Iba Prelature until 1956 when he fell seriously ill and returned to Ireland for treatment. He went back to the Philippines in 1959 but had to be recalled again, incurably ill. He suffered from Hodgkins disease.  Father Dermot is buried at Dalgan.