Monument to Wexford-born teacher unveiled
Published 14/05/2016 | 00:00
NUI Maynooth have unveiled a monument in a garden to commemorate their beloved professor, the late Monsignor Patrick Corish, a native of Ballycullane, where he was born in 1921.
The monsignor, a priest of the Diocese of Ferns, was for many years professor of history in Saint Patrick's College, Maynooth, in succession to the late Cardinal Tomás Ó Fiaich.
Among those attending were Bishop Denis Brennan and a group of his friends, including fellow priests and former students, and Fr William Cosgrave, moral theology expert and author of several books and Fr Sean Carroll.
The monument itself was a was a specially-sculpted tree combining imagery of a book and an owl depicting Monsignor Corish's learning, his teaching, his wisdom and his keen interest in growth, nature and gardening.
The college website said the monsignor was the kind of teacher for whom every student longed. Entertaining, dedicated, serious, penetrating, supportive and challenging all at once, for many he was simply the best teacher they ever had.
For his professional colleagues he was a first class researcher, introducing to Irish ecclesiastical history in particular the scholarly innovations and methodological advances characteristic of the best continental historiography.
He contributed crucially to the growth and consolidation of the department of history in Maynooth and ensured its status as the pre-eminent department in the Faculty and one of the best in these islands.
An engaging and talented writer, his books, articles and reviews constitute an important historical corpus in themselves and remain thesine qua non for an informed understanding of the history of the early modern Irish Catholic community.
His history of Maynooth College (1995) is well known and few books made as deep an impression on contemporaries as his provocative, elegant and eminently readableThe Irish Catholic Experience (1985). He acted for many years as the editor of the sources journal Archivium Hibernicum and coordinated the History of Irish Catholicism project. His work on the early modern Irish martyrs, along with that of Benignus Millett OFM, was crucial to the success of their cause in Rome.
He died on January 10, 2013.