A Time in History (May 24-31)

May 24

FR. TIMOTHY J. DONNELLY was born in 1918 at Cobh, County Cork, Ireland. He died in Dalgan on May 24, 1996. When Father Tim completed his secondary education at Presentation College, Cobh in 1936 he entered Dalgan seminary where he was ordained priest on December 21, 1942. Due to World War II, he worked in the diocese of Menevia, Wales until 1946 and was then assigned to Hanyang. Due to the unrest in China he was appointed to the Philippines in 1949 where he worked in Mindanao and Negros. In 1958, he was assigned to the Irish Region and was engaged in pastoral work until 1974. He then went to the Diocese of Galloway and spent many years as chaplain to the Marist Brothers in Dumfries. In 1987, failing health forced his retirement to Dalgan, where he is buried.



 FR. SAMUEL SHEEHAN was a native of Mallow, County Cork, Ireland where he was born in 1908. He died at Dalgan on May 24, 1976. Father Sam studied at the Patrician Brothers, Mallow, before going to Holy Cross College, Clonliffe, both in Ireland, to study for priesthood in the Archdiocese of Dublin. Some of his studies were done at the Irish College in Rome. He joined the Columbans in 1931 and was ordained priest in 1932. In 1933, he went to the Philippines and worked in the Lingayen area until 1940. He was in Ireland when World War II broke out so he joined the British Army as a chaplain [1941-45]. In 1945, he returned to the Philippines where he had the daunting task of rebuilding the war-shattered Columban properties. Assigned to Ireland, in 1952 Father Sam did promotion work and was manager of THE FAR EAST office. He is buried at Dalgan.


May 25


FR. SEÁN A. DUNNE was born in Trim County Meath, Ireland on May 6, 1926. Educated at Convent of Mercy NS, Trim Model School and St. Finian’s College, Mullingar, Ireland he came to Dalgan seminary in 1945. He was ordained priest on December 21, 1951. Over the next five years he did post-graduate studies in journalism and cinematography at Marquette University, Denver College of Journalism and the University of Southern California. He was appointed to Korea to do photojournalism from 1958 to 1960. He also served a NCWC correspondent. In Korea, he produced “Path to Glory”, a highly rated documentary film on the history of the Korean Church and the role played by Columbans in the 1940s and 1950s. There followed a stint in Ireland working with Radharc in the production of films with a missionary focus for television. From 1963 to 1975, Father Seán was assigned to the Subic Bay/Olongapo City areas in the Philippines. He was engaged in pastoral work while he continued to write and take photographs. A two-year stint on promotion in England followed. Then from 1977 to 1986 he served as editor of the Irish ‘Far East’. Once released from this task he undertook a long safari that brought him to Brazil, Chile, Peru, Belize and Jamaica. In the course of this journey he took many high-quality slides and photographs, wrote innumerable articles, and encouraged Columbans to write. From 1990 to 1996 he did pastoral work in Monivea, County Galway, Ireland and later he became chaplain at St Raphael’s, Celbridge, County Kildare from 1997 to 2003, when he retired to Dalgan Park. Father Seán Anthony was an excellent photographer and journalist. He bore his long, often painful illness with patience and deep faith. Father Seán died in Dalgan on May 25, 2012.


May 29

burke  FR. EDWARD BURKE was born in Belfast in 1924. He died at Iligan airport, Philippines on May 29, 1976. Father Ned, as he was called, received his secondary education at St. Malachy’s College, Belfast, Ireland. He was ordained priest at Dalgan seminary in 1947 and assigned to the Philippines where he spent his entire priestly ministry. He gained a degree in Education at the University of San Carlos, Cebu. He was taken ill in his parish of Balabagan and flown to Iligan for hospitalization. He died before reaching hospital. Father Ned is buried in Cagayan de Oro, Philippines.




Bsp. Patrick Cronin and Fr. Ed Burke


May 30


 FR. MICHAEL NOLAN was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1924. While staying with his parents at The Hague, where his brother-in-law was Ireland’s ambassador to Holland, he died suddenly from a heart attack on May 30, 1964. Father Michael was educated at Mount St. Joseph, Roscrea, and Holy Cross College, Clonliffe, Ireland before coming to Dalgan seminary in 1942. He was ordained priest in 1947 and appointed to the Philippines. After a year in a rural parish, he served as a chaplain in various universities and later directed the Student Catholic Action movement. Father Michael is buried at Dalgan.




halpin FR. COLUM O’HALPIN was born in Magherabone, County Down, Ireland in 1924. He died in Manila, Philippines, of inoperable cancer on May 30, 2003. Having completed his secondary studies at St. Eunan’s, Letterkenny, Ireland he entered Dalgan seminary and was ordained there in 1949. He spent the next 52 years in different parishes on the island of Negros where he found time to gather prospective athletes around him, giving them many hours of training, climaxing in a number of national successes.  Father Colum, a brother of Columban Father Aodh O’Halpin, is buried at Kabankalan, Philippines.





Fr. Colum O’Halpin in Negros, 1956