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27 Sept 2022

Sad passing of former Thurles CBS pupil, Bishop Seamus Freeman

The 78 year old will lay in repose at the Pallotine College, Thurles on Wednesday

The late Bishop Seamus Freeman who will lay in Repose in the Pallotine College, Thurles on Wednesday

The late Bishop Seamus Freeman who will lay in Repose in the Pallotine College, Thurles on Wednesday

Former Bishop of Ossory and confrere of the Pallotine Order, Bishop Emeritus Séamus Freeman has died at the age of 78.


A past pupil of Thurles CBS Secondary School and a man who worked as head of the Pallotine College in Thurles for a number of years, Bishop Freeman had been in failing health for some time and passed away in a nursing home in Dublin at the weekend surrounded by his family. He will lay in Repose in Thurles on Wednesday afternoon.


Though born in Mullinahone, he was regarded as a Callan man with his family having moved there when he was young. He was Bishop of Ossory from 2007 until his retirement in 2016 due to ill-health and was also a world leader of the Pallotine Order.


Bishop Séamus was the eldest of eight children, in the parish of Mullinahone but his family later moved to Callan. He entered the Society of the Catholic Apostolate (Pallotines) in Thurles, and made his first Pallotine consecration in 1965. He studied philosophy at UCD, and theology at Saint Patrick’s College, Thurles. He was ordained a priest on June 12, 1971.


Subsequent to his ordination, Father Freeman was sent to the Catholic University of Washington to pursue studies in psychology but was called to Rome not long afterwards to act as personal secretary to the Rector General of his society. Two years later he returned to Washington to complete his studies and was awarded a degree in psychology.
In 1975 he was appointed Director of Formation and Rector of the Church of Saint Sylvester in Rome.

During his rectorship, in May 1975, he was also elected a member of the Provincial Council of the Irish Province of the Society. In 1981 he returned to Ireland to take up the post of Rector and Director of Formation at the Pallotine College in Thurles.


He facilitated the realisation of the Diocesan Pastoral Plan, as the People’s Plan for Ossory, and recently employed the first lay pastoral worker in Ossory to ensure its continued implementation. As Bishop of Ossory he worked tirelessly for the restoration of Saint Mary’s Cathedral, its Blessed Sacrament Chapel, Chapter House and surrounding campus.


Dearly loved and sadly missed by his sisters Esther and Mary, RSM, his brothers Tommy, John and Pat, sisters- in- law Bernie, Catherine and Michelle, his nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews, his close friend Frances, Raymond, and his extended family and friends, Most Rev. Denis Nulty, Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin and Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Ossory, Priests, Religious and the Lay Faithful of the Diocese of Ossory, Rev. Father Jacob Nampudakam, SAC, Rector General, and his entire Pallottine family throughout the world.


Reposing in the Pallottine College, Thurles, from 4.30pm today (Wednesday), Prayers at 6.00pm followed by removal to St. Mary's Cathedral, Kilkenny to arrive at 7.30pm. Reposing from 10.00am in the Cathedral on Thursday, 25th August 2022, with Night Prayer at 9.00pm.


Bishop Seamus's Funeral Mass will be concelebrated on Friday at 12 noon, followed by burial in the grounds of St. Mary's Cathedral, which will be live streamed at www.stmaryscathedral.ie /webcam/

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