THE PARISH OF KNOCKNINNY has been left saddened following the death of former Parish Priest, Fr Fintan McKiernan (79) on Wednesday.
Paying tribute to his work over the years, Fr Gerard Alwill told the Herald, “We first crossed paths back in 1967.
He was appointed to the teaching staff of St Patrick’s College Cavan and that’s where I first met him as my maths teacher back when I was about 14 or 15.
“He was a fantastic teacher in a sense that for maths you need to be able to explain things fairly clearly and he had that ability.
“He had the ability to enjoy his teaching with a sense of humour, there were times when class was a little bit of fun with slagging and humour and the on the other hand then when it came to teaching that was taken seriously.”
Speaking on his role within the parish, Fr Alwill said, “He was a person who loved the company of people and loved to be out visiting any hour of the day or night.
“Fr Fintan served the people of this parish from 1998 until he retired in 2017, a total of 19 years. He was a man who was not afraid of hardwork and worked tirelessly for the good of the parish.
“At a practical level he oversaw the renovations of the sanctuary in St Ninnidh’s Church and the rewiring of the building.
“He would of been the driving force behind the construction of the new St Ninnidh’s Primary School and was always very supportive of St Mary’s Primary School and St Aidan’s High School.
“But it was his pastoral role that touched the lives of so many people in the parish, and further afield.
“He was especially caring towards families at times of illness and bereavement. Over the years Fr Fintan got to know nearly everyone in the parish and developed deep and lasting friendships with many of his parishioners.
“The huge number of people who attended his farewell function in September 2017 bore eloquent testimony to the high esteem in which was held by all.
“For them, he was a hardworking , dedicated and caring priest who always put their good before his own. He will be fondly remembered by all who knew him.”
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