Today, October 29, our brother Joe MacMahon OFM, went home peacefully to God after a long illness. He was 80 years old.
A member of the Ennis fraternity, Joe was born in Limerick in 1942. He entered the Franciscan novitiate in Killarney in 1960, and the following year celebrated his First Profession. After studies in Galway and Leuven, Belgium he was ordained to the priesthood in 1970.
Having requested to be sent on the foreign missions, Joe went to Chile the following year. He returned to Leuven in 1974 to pursue his doctorate in social studies, and thereafter lectured in Bolivia and in Pretoria, South Africa.
Joe returned to Ireland in 1988 and was appointed to various houses in the Province over the next 22 years. In 2000 he returned to the missions and lectured in St Bonaventure College in Lusaka, Zambia. However, within a year he was elected by the friars in Zimbabwe to be their Custos. He came back to Ireland in 2005 and was appointed Secretary of the Province, based in Dublin. He went to Ennis in 2017.
Joe’s gifts and Franciscan spirit were highly esteemed by the friars and he was called upon to serve in various roles in the Order throughout his life. At the time that we were celebrating the 750th Anniversary of the foundation of the Abbey in Multyfarnham, Joe very kindly visited and spent a few hours telling us of the history.
His contemplative soul and his ready smile and kindness meant that his ministry among the people of several countries was fruitful over many years.
May the Lord comfort his family members and the friars who grieve his loss, and grant Joe the reward of his faithful Franciscan life.
Joe’s Requiem Mass will be celebrated on Monday, October 31 at 11:00am and following Mass, he will be buried in the Ennis Friary plot in Abbey Street, Limerick.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a h’anam dílis