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The Late Archbishop Croke.

[Contributed.]

Telegrams from London, of date 22nd July, announced the demlae of the gifted and patriotic Archbishop of Cashel and Emly. Earlier intelligence told that the illustrious prelate was dangerously ill, and that the Pope had sent him his blessing. Evidently the end *as approaching— the end of a truly great champion of creed and country. The Catholics of his day in Auckland will never forget his letters on Masonry and Orangfi-un. and the consternation they caused in these two hotbeds of bigotry. His preaching, too, in old St. Patiick's attracted universal attention. All denominations tbrong«d to the Cathedral to hear his brilliant discourses. Usually there were crowds around the door and alongside the windows outside, the capacity of the church being quite unequal to the demand on auch occasions. One had to go an hour before the appointed time in order to find sitting or even standing room. This went on for three years, when, to Auckland's great loss, Dr. Croke left the shores of New Zealand. Thi«, however, was Ireland's gain. His letters on the Home Rule qaestion, his brilliant speeches throughout his Archdiocese in support of the National cause, attracted profound attention and gave the movement an impetus and nerve that bore it on to the very brink of complete triumph. Useless to recount ths sad cause of temporary failure. Suffice it to say that Dr. Croke, the patriotic prelate, did his part nobly and fearlessly. When yet Home Rule will be granted, his honored name will be mentioned with reverence and respect. As his sage advice and hie generous purse were always at the service of his country, bo the spirit of patriotism and generosity he infused will not fail until victory shall crown the Hcrse Rulj movement and make Old Ireland a nation once agiin.

No prelate was better known in ecclesiastical circles, There was no National movement but felt the support of his voica and purse and pen. And the diocese of Auckland, his first See, he never ceaped to help, as hia successors have thankfully acknowledged.

The following brief biography of the deceased prelate will be interesting to the readers of the Tablet. It is taken from the late Dr. Comer ford's ' History of the Dioceee of Kildare and Leighlin ' : ' Or. Oroke was Processor of Humanities at Carlow College in 1847, and left, early in 1849, for the Irish College in Paris, having been appointed Professor of Dogmatic Theology in that institution. Hiß Grace is a native of County Cork, having been born near Mallow, May 19, 1824. He entered the Irish College, Paris, in 1839, whence he removed, in 1845, to become Professor of Rhetoric and the Mathematics in the College Episcopas de Merien, near Courtrai in Belgium. In November, 1815, he proceeded to the Iriph College, Rome, took his detrree of D.D. in the Roman College, and was ordamed priest on the 28th May, 184 7. On relinquishing his professorship at Parip, Dr. Croke returned to Ireland, where he served on the mission for about six years. He was afterwards president of the newly-estab-lished College of St. Colman, Fermoy, in which position he continued for the succeeding eight years, at the termination of which he received the appointment of P.P. of Doneraile. Four years later be was chopen by the Holy See as Bishop of Auckland, New Zealand, and was consecrated on the 10th July, 1870, in the Church of St. Agatha, Rome, by his Eminence Cardinal Cullen, assisted by Dr. Murphy, Bishop of Hobartown, and Dr. Quinn, Bishop of Brisbane. In June, 1875, Dr. Croke was appointed Archbishop of Caahel, in euccession to the Mobt Rev. T)r. Leahy.'

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The Late Archbishop Croke. New Zealand Tablet, Volume XXX, Issue 32, 7 August 1902

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