The Beatification of Edmund Rice
Founder of the Irish Christian Brothers
For many years the people of Waterford and Ireland have tried to introduce the cause for Edmund Rice. A cause is another word for a person who is on the way to becoming a saint. Many people felt that Edmund Rice should be recognised by the Church for all his good works. The first attempt to introduce Edmunds cause was in 1911. The man who started this was named Brother Mark Hill. He went around Waterford and parts of Ireland collecting statements (on why Edmund should be made a saint) from the people, but nothing really came of it.
It was nearly thirty years later when the cause was started up again by the efforts of Pious Noonan, who was the Superior General at the time (Edmund was the first Superior General). With the help of Monsignor Montini (the future Pope Paul IV), the cause was officially opened in Dublin in 1957. But there were delays.
In 1976 the Historical Commission of the Dublin Archdiocese and Father Kevin Kennedy now as secretary recommended that Edmund's cause be brought to Rome. Roman theologians agreed to look into Edmund's cause. Three Brothers had the burden of investigating archives and collecting evidence on why Edmund should be a saint. They were Mark Hill, David Fitzpatrick and Columba Normoyle, with assistance from John Carroll, Austin Connolly and Donal Blake. Brother Dominic Taylor and Father Peter Gumble wrote a book called the "Positio" (the Positio is a book about Edmund), the document for examination by the Historical and Theological Commissions of the Vatican. After the commissions unanimous approval the Pope declared Edmund worthy of his cause in 1993.
In 1996 Edmund was finally made Blessed (the first step in becoming a saint). The ceremony took place in Rome. Mr. O' Neachtain who is a teacher in our school went to the ceremony. When he came back we had our own mass for Edmund Rice.
After nearly 85 years Edmund Rice is on the way to sainthood.
Our school is called after this great man. You can read all about what happened in Rome on the next page
Researched and written by--:
Conor Conroy and Thomas Flynn