Rev. Fr. John Heneghan

Co. Mayo Map
St. Jarlath's College, Co. Galway
St. Patrick's College, Maynooth 2009
Navan, Co. Meath circa 1900 -1939,_Co._Meath,_Ireland_(16265239630).jpg
Map of Philippines Achim1999
Louisburgh, Co Mayo

Columban Missionary / Editor / Author

This Mayo priest of the Colomban Fathers was an interesting man as an Author who Ministered with empathy to all whom he encountered.

John Heneghan was born in Louisburgh, Co. Mayo during 1881(Michael Feeney[i]


John Heneghan attended the local Louisburg National School.  He received his Second Level education at St. Jarlath’s College in Tuam, Co. Galway.  He proceeded to St. Patrick’s College in Maynooth. (Michael Feeney)  [ii]


John Heneghan was posted as a Curate to Annaghadown in the Tuam Diocese. (Michael Feeney[iii]


He was Ordained in Maynooth College during 1909 by the Archbishop of Dublin William Walsh. (Michael Feeney) [iv]


He heard Confessions of Tuam Volunteers on their way to Athenry to join the Easter Rising in 1916.  [v]


Fr. Heneghan was offered a post as Dean in St. Columban’s.  Dalgan Park, in Shrule, Co. Mayo (The present Seminary was purchased during 1927: now at Navan, Co. Meath) [vi]

Head of Council

He was elected as the Head of Superior Generals Council from 1919 to 1924. (Michael Feeney)  [vii]


He acted as Editor of the Society’s Publication ‘The Far East.’ (his prose was described as Beautifully Written’  These were posthumously published. (Michael Feeney) [viii]

Fr. Heneghan penned the following books: ‘White Martyrdom’ 1946, St. Columban’s, Milton. Massachusetts, ‘The Secret Scriptures of the Poor’ 1951 also ‘Fr. Damien Exemplar of Noble Deeds’ 1954  (both by) Clonmore Reynolds Ltd.  (Michael Feeney[ix]


Fr. Heneghan was sent to the Missions in the Philippines during 1931 while he was aged forty – nine years.  He ministered to the local people until his untimely demise. (Michael Feeney)  [x]


Along with five Columban Colleagues he was murdered by the Government Forces during the U. S. – Japanese Battle for Manila.  (Michael Feeney[xi]


Fr. John Heneghan was posthumously awarded the Medal of Freedom by the U. S. Government (Highest Civilian Decoration). The Citation reads: ‘He secretly gave aid & substance, material & spiritual, to the American & Allied internees.’  (Michael Feeney[xii]


An article entitled ‘Bangor to Bobbio’ written by the Columban Society featured Fr. Heneghan & his Companions, it included photographs. [xiii]

A Stone Bench of Granite Reference (WM0248588) is situated within the Mayo Peace Park at Castlebar in his memory.  A Plaque in Remembrance of Fr. Heneghan is in Castlebar Peace Park. (Martin Coyle 28th October 2016[xiv]   

On the 100th Anniversary of Armistice Day the annual Mayo Remembrance Mass was held in St. Patrick’s Church Louisburgh.  Fr. Heneghan is featured in an article by Edwin Mc Greal, ‘The Mayo News’ 13th November 2018.  [xv]

A Monument was erected in front of the Malate Church in Fr. Heneghan’s & his fellow Priests’ memory: his nephew Monsignor John Heneghan attended the ceremony on family’s behalf. [xvi]

A history of the Dalgan Columban Seminary may be seen at this link:


[i] Remembering Mayo’s Fallen Heroes [assessed 8th October 2019]

[ii] Ibid

[iii] Ibid

[iv] Ibid

[v] John Heneghan ( ) [assessed 9th October 2019]

[vi] Remembering Mayo’s Fallen Heroes [assessed 8th October 2019]

[vii] Remembering Mayo’s Fallen Heroes [assessed 8th October 2019]

[viii] Ibid.

[ix] John Heneghan ( ) [assessed 9th October 2019]

[x] Remembering Mayo’s Fallen Heroes [assessed 8th October 2019]

[xi]  Ibid.

[xii] Ibid.

[xiii]  Bangor to Bobbio ( [assessed 9th October 2019]

[xiv]  Fr. John Heneghan ( ) [assessed 9th October 2019]

[xv] Louisburgh’s Fallen remembered ( [assessed 8th October 2019]

[xvi] John Heneghan ( [assessed 9th October 2019]

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