Rest In Peace Br. Cronan Loughrey.
Br. Cronan Loughrey died on the 21st of September in his 99th year. R.I.P. Br. Cronan was a deeply holy man, loved and respected by all who knew him or came under his influence.
An outstanding educator (and sports coach in his younger days), he taught for many years in Birr, Co. Offaly, where the Presentation Brothers were centrally involved in the resurgence of Offaly hurling in the modern era. He had a great love of Irish language and culture, which he passed on to his students. He taught R.E. with great commitment and transparent sincerity. His Religion classes were special. For him, it was all about helping young people come in touch with the love of God in their lives.
Br. Cronan also taught for many years in Presentation Brothers College, Cork, where he was highly respected by students, staff and parents. In an Irish Times interview, Ireland rugby legend, Peter Stringer, described Br. Cronan in glowing terms, as one of the teachers who had most influenced his life. May he now enter into the fullness of God’s love. May his faith, dedication and generosity continue to inspire us.
Ar dheis De go raibh a anam uasal.
The funeral took place in Christ the King Church, Turner’s Cross, Cork and the homily was given by Br. Raymond Dwyer.
The homily can be viewed by clicking on the link below.
A special tribute from another of Br. Cronan’s past pupils.
Morgan O’Sullivan is a giant of the Irish and international film industry, having produced many famous films and TV series. In 2011, he received a lifetime award for his ‘Outstanding Contribution to the Irish Film Industry ‘. During his acceptance speech at the Awards Gala, Morgan paid a great tribute to Br. Cronan, who taught him in Presentation College, Bray. I remember speaking to Br. Cronan about this tribute after this programme appeared on television. In his usual humble way, he was mildly embarrassed by the accolade. I also wrote to Morgan O’Sullivan to thank him for acknowledging Br. Cronan’s unique influence in his life. He held Cronan in the highest regard.
Morgan O’Sullivan’s speech begins at 2 mins 30 secs. Into the YouTube clip and the tribute to Br. Cronan is at 3.20.
If you have time, the entire clip (11 mins) is worth watching. There is a lot in there on leadership and mentoring. Br. Cronan was clearly a powerful mentor!
We thank God for the gift of his life and his influence for good on so many people.
Moladh go deo le Dia!
In memoriam: Br. William Cronan Loughrey
Br. Cronan was born the third youngest of a family of eight in Ballysheedy, Gort, Co. Galway. His mother died when he was five years old. He attended Gort NS before coming to Colaiste Muire where he sat the Leaving Cert in 1940. He joined the novitiate in Mt.St.Joseph and was finally professed in 1946
He qualified as an NT in de la Salle College Waterford in 1945 and graduated with a BA in 1954 and H.Dip in Education in 1955.
He taught in St. Joseph’s NS, Mardyke from 1946 to 1955 and in St. Pat’s Greenmount from ’55 to ’57. He taught in Pres. College, Bray from ’57 to ’63 serving a period as Principal and Community Leader.
He transferred back to Cork and taught in Colaiste Chriost RÍ from ’63 to ’64 and in Colaiste Therese from ’64 to ’66 where he served as Community Leader and school Principal. He was posted to Presentation College, Birr from ’66 to ’79 and got involved in hurling coaching to good effect.
He was back in Cork again from ’79 teaching in Colaiste Therese, Greenmount where he was Community Leader and Principal.
In 1984 he took up his final teaching appointment in PBC, Mardyke. He was an excellent Irish teacher and was much respected and loved by his students. He taught in Summer Schools on The Aran Islands for many years.
He had carried the burden of leadership conscientiously and with good grace. He had been Community Leader in the following Communities: St. Patrick’s Orphanage, Greenmount, The South Monastery; Colaiste Threrese Greenmount, Bray and Birr. He served as Principal in the following schools: St. Joseph’s Mardyke; Greenmount NS; Pres College Bray and Colaiste Therese.
He retired in 1994 to Maiville where he lived quietly and prayerfully involving himself in gardening, crosswords; card playing and serving as sacristan.
He enjoyed pitch and putt and went to Kilkee on holidays every summer with Br. Michael McAuliffe. He kept up his life-long involvement with the Legion of Mary, serving as spiritual director to the local Turner’s Cross Praesidium into his 90’s.
until he went to Nazareth House Nursing Home in Mallow in Dec 2020 where he passed away peacefully on Sept 21st, 2021.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.