Last Thursday saw the arrival of the much-anticipated latest issue of The Clongownian in the school. The journal was presented to the Headmaster, Mr Chris Lumb by the editor, Mr Declan O’Keeffe and later distributed to the pupils and staff. The Clongownian is the annual school journal, which has been published continually since its foundation in the summer of 1895, and reflects the breadth of activity in the school, be it academic, cultural, pastoral, religious or sporting. It also has a long tradition of publishing feature articles, which touch on aspects of the college’s long history and its many distinguished alumni.
2016 was a signal year in the history of this island, falling right in the middle of the Decade of Centenaries. In addition to all the regular items (ranging from school plays to rugby reports by way of Lourdes and the Duck Push) this issue of The Clongownian remembers three past pupils who fought in Dublin during the 1916 Rising (including The O’Rahilly) and another past pupil, Tom Kettle, who might well have been an insurgent, but who met his death leading a company of his men on the Western Front in World War I.
Fifty years after the events just mentioned, another Clongownian took his leave of the old school and commenced his career in the Society of Jesus. Michael L Sheil may fairly be described as the quintessential Clongownian, man and boy and is recognised as such on the front cover (cover picture above). His seven years as a student were followed by thirty-one years of his sixty (not out) as a Jesuit, working in various roles in the college where he is currently Rector (for the second time). We are honoured to be able to salute Michael in these pages, just as the school acknowledged him on a memorable day last September.
The Clongownian 2016 also contains exclusive articles with happier news of distinguished past pupils: rugby international, Gordon D’Arcy, musician Fergus O’Farrell and internationally acclaimed author Aidan Higgins. A very limited number of copies of this historic volume is available and may be obtained by sending a cheque for €50 (incl p&p), made payable to Clongowes Wood College, to: The Editor, The Clongownian, Clongowes Wood College SJ, Clane, Co Kildare. All proceeds will go to the Alberto Hurtado Bursary Programme.
Declan O’Keeffe, Head of Communications