File 5 - Copy Circular Letter from Provincial Minister

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IE CA DL/1/5


Copy Circular Letter from Provincial Minister


  • 5 Mar. 1930 (Creation)

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2 copies; 2 pp; Manuscript; typescript

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(30 May 1877-20 January 1959)

Biographical history

Christopher Boyle was born in the town of Boyle in County Roscommon on 30 May 1877. He joined the Irish Capuchins in October 1896 and took Kevin as his religious name. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree from the Royal University in Cork in 1901. Following his theological studies, he was ordained to the priesthood on 28 September 1902. There followed further academic studies at the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium where he was awarded a Doctorate in Philosophy. In 1907 he was appointed guardian (local superior) of Rochestown Friary in County Cork. Three years later he was appointed Rector of the Seraphic College at Rochestown. In 1919 he assumed the role of master of novices. He was five times elected Provincial Definitor (Councillor) and held the office of Provincial Minister of the Irish Capuchins from 1928 to 1931. His term of office as Provincial Minister witnessed the opening of Ard Mhuire Friary in County Donegal (for the training of cleric novices) in 1930, and the establishment of a foreign mission in Barotseland, a vast territory located in Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) in 1931. Fr. Kevin spent most of his life in ministry in Rochestown holding various offices including guardian, director of students and professor of theology. He died (suddenly) at St. Bonaventure’s Friary in Cork on 20 January 1959. He was buried in the cemetery adjoining Rochestown Friary.

Baptismal name: Christopher Moynihan
Religious name: Fr. Kevin Moynihan OFM Cap.
Date of birth: 30 May 1877
Place of birth: Boyle, County Roscommon (Diocese of Elphin)
Name of father: Michael Moynihan
Name of mother: Margaret Moynihan (née Murphy)
Date of reception into the Capuchin Order: 4 Oct. 1896
Date of first profession: 4 Oct. 1897
Date of final profession: 2 Aug. 1902
Date of ordination (as priest): 28 Sept. 1902
Educational attainments: BA, RUI (1901); PhD, Catholic University of Louvain
Leadership positions: Provincial Definitor (Councillor), 1910-3, 1913-6, 1919-21, 1940-3, 1943-6; Provincial Minister, 1928-31; Custos General, 1931-4.
Date of death: 20 Jan. 1959
Place of death: St. Bonaventure’s Capuchin Friary, Cork
Place of burial: Cemetery, Rochestown Capuchin Friary, County Cork

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Scope and content

Copy circular letter from Fr. Kevin Moynihan OFM Cap., Provincial Minister, announcing the purchase of Ards House by the Capuchin Order. The letter reads:

'It is more than 350 years since the Franciscans laboured “for the glory of God, and the honour of Erin” in the historic Abbey of Donegal. Now they are returning and let us hope that this new Friary of the Order will be a centre of spiritual force, the influence of which will be felt, not only in Tirconaill, but in the whole of the north of Ireland'.

He also expresses his gratitude to Fr. Aloysius Travers OFM Cap. whose ‘untiring energy’ ensured the acquisition of the property. A note (added by Fr. Angelus Healy OFM Cap.) states that a meeting of the Provincial Definitory on 5 Mar. 1930 confirmed the plan to purchase of Ards House for a canonical foundation. It is also noted that Fr. Colman Griffin OFM Cap. was appointed guardian of the new foundation.

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