Father Gerard O’Connor CSsR, a friend of the O’Malley family, was chief celebrant for the Funeral Mass for the late Desmond O’Malley RIP which took place on 23 July in the Church of the Sacred Heart, Donnybrook, in the Archdiocese of Dublin.

During his homily, Father O’Connor highlighted the influence of O’Malley on Irish politics. He said, “At a political rally, in the West of Ireland, Councillor Joe Burke from Tuam, who was running for the PDs, in a descriptive moment of genius, described Des O’Malley as a combination of the best of John F Kennedy and Pope John Paul II. I understand that Des, was mortified, and was heard to utter a string of impolite words.

“From 1985 onwards, Des regularly advocated that: The best role for faith is to challenge politics and to hold the public square morally accountable to values derived from a position of faith”.

Describing the impact of the late Mr O’Malley had on his own vocation, Father O’Connor said, “Des had a powerful message, that has shaped my vocation: and it is this: Instead of trying to dominate the public square, faith communities should seek to inform and inspire it. Faith communities should prefer authenticity over conformity, reflection over certainty, leadership by example and not by control.”

To read the full homily, click here.

ENDS