05 August 2008
Fr Jeremiah Dwyer SMA
Fr Jeremiah (Jerry) Dwyer SMA passed away peacefully at St Theresa’s Nursing Unit attached to the SMA House, Blackrock Road Cork, in the afternoon of 5 August 2008. He had been in deteriorating health for a number of years but his condition deteriorated rapidly on Tuesday morning until his passing in the afternoon. He was 84 years old.
Jerry hailed from College Road in Cork City in the Diocese of Cork where he was born on 10 July 1924, the eldest of seven children, three girls and four boys. His early schooling was at the nearby Chistian Brothers Schools, O’Sullivans Quay. After school he studied book-keeping at the College of Commerce and began working as an accountant. At the age of twenty-six he decided to become a priest and came to the SMA, studying in the SMA Houses at Cloughballymore, Co Galway and Dromantine, Newry, Co Down. He became a member of the Society of African Missions on 2 July 1953 and was ordained to the priesthood in St Colman’s Cathedral, Newry, Co Down on 18 December 1956, the centenary year of the founding of the Society . He had the privilege of celebrating the Golden Jubilee of his Ordination two years ago.
He was assigned to Nigeria and began his missionary apostolate there in the Archdiocese of Kaduna where he served for twelve years from 1957 to 1969. Due to ill-health he withdrew from Africa and went on pastoral ministry in Ireland and Britain. He spent 2 years (1969-1971) in the Archdiocese of Westminster in England. From 1972 until 2004 he served in various dioceses in Ireland: Diocese of Cork (1972-1982), Diocese of Kerry (1982-1987), Diocese of Waterford & Lismore (1987-1989) and Diocese of Killaloe (1989-2004). In 2004 he retired from active ministry and took up residence at the SMA House, Blackrock Road, Cork.
His remains were removed from the Oratory at SMA House, Blackrock Road, Cork on Thursday, 7 August for the concelebarated funeral Mass. The main celebrant of the Mass was Provincial Councillor, Fr Damian Bresnahan SMA. Mgr Leonard O’Brien VG represented the Bishop of Cork & Ross and Fr Pat Greed represented the parish of Clonlara, Fr Jerry’s last parish in Killaloe Diocese. Following the obsequies Fr Jerry’s body was interred in the SMA Community Cemetery at Wilton, Cork.
He was predeceased by his brothers Michael and Pat and sisters Maud and Maureen. He is sadly mourned by his sister Ann and by his brother Dan and sisters-in-law Brenda and Kathleen and relatives and friends.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.