Fr Richard O’Sullivan

Mar 28, 2022

Fr Richard (Dick) O’Sullivan was born at Kilgarvan, Co. Kerry on 17 February 1936. He was educated at Kilgarvan Boys School and at St Brendan’s College, Killarney, Co Kerry. He came to Dalgan in September 1953 and was ordained priest on 21 December 1959.

He was appointed to Fiji and during his first term he served in the parishes of Lautoka, Labasa and Nabala. Already fluent in Fijian, after his first home vacation, Dick was appointed to India to study Hindustani and to develop the Columban missionary outreach to the Indian population – Christians, Hindus and Muslims – of Fiji.

From 1968 to 1970 he worked on content and lesson plans for teaching the Hindustani and Fijian languages to missionary personnel.

Dick was always a scholar and a gifted teacher. Several periods of study at the East Asian Pastoral Institute in Manila (1972-74), and at Vidyajyoti Institute of Religious Education, Delhi, India (1980-1983) culminated in a Master’s and a Doctoral degree in Theology.

He was a member of the staff of St Columban’s Seminary, Dalgan Park from 1975-1980 where he served as Socius to the Spiritual Year students and taught Mission Theology, Asian Religious Traditions, Liberation Theology and Missionary Spirituality.

He also served on the teaching staff of the Faith and Mission Institute, the Justice and Faith Institute, and the Milltown Institute. From 1992-1995 he was a member of the teaching staff at the Pacific Mission Institute, Turramurra, Sydney, NSW.

Dick returned to Fiji as a permanent member of the teaching and formation staff of the Pacific Regional Seminary, in Suva from 1996 to 2016 when he was assigned to retirement in Ireland due to failing health.

Dick died on the morning of 26 March 2022. He was a quiet, reserved gentleman with a phenomenal capacity for study and application to every task.

He was meticulous in his preparation for classes, gifted with a capacity for explaining and simplifying difficult concepts and blessed with a sense of unique Kerry humour. He was hugely appreciated by his students and all of us will miss his gentle presence.

May he rest in peace.

Video of the Funeral Mass for Fr Richard:

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