Fr. BENIGNUS of Jesus Crucified (Martin Walsh)
A Co. Carlow man, he was born at Powerstown on the 26th September 1855. In 1872, the year the first foundation-stone of Mt. Argus Church was laid (see inscription on facade), he attended a Mission given by the Passionists in his native parish; and felt drawn to our way of life. He lost no time, in putting his vocation into action: he went to a school which was under our direction in London, England, to brush up his classical education; and from there to the Novitiate in Broadway, Worcs., where after the usual year’s training he was Professed as Cfr. Benignus of Jesus Crucified on 8th July 1875. He then joined the Philosophy Class in Sutton, Lancs., and with them was transferred to Highgate in 1876. While here he contracted consumption. He was ordained Priest ahead of his class, so that if death intervened he might have had the consolation of having offered the Holy Sacrifice.
In the hope that a warmer climate might benefit his health he was sent to Rome, and became ‘de fa’ at the Scala Sancta Retreat. That Summer he was sent up to Monte Argentaro. But, he caught a cold, and returned to Rome to the Retreat of Ss. John and Paul, where he died on the night of the 14th/15th January. Before dying, he sent his Last Blessing to his Mother, and his thanks and gratitude to his Superiors at home in the Province. He was a man of great promise and had God spared him, it was more than likely his Apostolate would have been a most fruitful one. But, God’s plans were otherwise, and no doubt in Heaven his prayers for his brethren and their apostolate did greater good.
Sources: Fr. Salvian’s ‘Register’
‘CP Suffrage Masses Book’ (1874-1895)