At a conferral ceremony for 232 lay men and women in Saint Patrick’s College Maynooth on 10 November 2018, Archbishop Eamon Martin paid tribute to the late Emma Mhic Mhathúna. The graduates were conferred with academic awards in Theology, Philosophy and Education. Archbishop Eamon Martin granted these awards and gave an address at the ceremony.
Archbishop Eamon opened his address by acknowledging the work of the Columban Missionaries. This year marks one hundred years since the founding of the “Maynooth Mission to China”, led by Father John Blowick who was the professor of Moral Theology in Maynooth.
Archbishop Eamon challenged the graduates to become missionary disciples, leading the missions around the world and indeed in Ireland, which has unfortunately returned to “mission territory”. He said: “Your fellow students in 1918 stepped up to be part of the Maynooth Mission to China and their courage and enthusiasm for spreading the joy of the Gospel was infectious!”
In his address, Archbishop Eamon paid tribute to Emma Mhic Mhathúna, who studied in the Bachelor of Arts and theology programme in Maynooth during 2014-15. She balanced her studies with family life but had to withdraw from her studies due to personal reasons.
Due to Emma’s courageous and powerful testimony during the cervical check controversy, Archbishop Eamon said: “I am pleased to hear, from the President, of the College’s intention to have an award dedicated to Emma to assist mature students who wish to return to education – ar dheis De go Raibh a anam.”