Hugh O’Flaherty Memorial Weekend

Hugh O’Flaherty Memorial Weekend

16 October 2009

Last November saw the inaugural Hugh O'Flaherty Memorial Weekend organised to recognise the Humanitarian deeds of a very courageous and selfless Kerry man.  During World War II Monsignor Hugh O'Flaherty, a unique and innovative man was the instigator of an organisation in Rome that saved over 6,500 lives.  This year the memorial weekend takes place from Friday 6th to Sunday 8th November with a wide range of events and activities to honour this great man.

On Friday 6th November at the INEC in Killarney, a very special night is being organised, produced by and starring Liam O'Connor, it will be a spectacular showcase of traditional and contemporary Irish music and dance, featuring a wide range of entertainers, all with a Killarney connection.  Acts already confirmed are the McCrothan Brothers, Baritone Gavin Ring and Soprano Nicola Mulligan.  The Monsignor's grand nephew from Caherciveen, Cormac Dineen will be performing and there will also be a special appearance by Magician Liam Sheehan, who is famous for performing for Michael Jackson and his children over the past number of years when the artist visited Ireland.

The proceeds from this night will go towards the Memorial Fund which is currently fundraising to build a permanent memorial of the Monsignor in Killarney town. 

Tickets are priced at €25 each and can be obtained from the INEC Booking Office (064-6671555), Killarney Tourism, Beech Road, Killarney (086 - 8531097) and also The Dungeon, College Street, Killarney.   Tickets are also available at Quirke's Newsagents and Step Above Hair Salon in Caherciveen or by calling (066) 9472548.

Also on this night, there will be an auction of the Monsignor's portrait by Cork Artist Stephen Murphy.  The portrait became the focal point of last year's memorial weekend and it is hoped to add substantially to the fund.  Bids are being accepted on-line through the official memorial website Bids are now being accepted on-line through the website.

On Saturday 7th November the first Hugh O'Flaherty International Humanitarian Award will be presented in the Killarney Plaza Hotel.  Last year the Monsignor was awarded a posthumous Killarney International Humanitarian Award and it was decided that this award would be an annual award and re-named in honour of the Monsignor.  Irish NGO's were invited to nominate a colleague(s) working overseas, who they feel have displayed the same ideals and principals of the Monsignor and would be deserving of this Award.  Seven of these agencies have been shortlisted and they are: - Goal, Trocaire, Medecins Sans Frontieres, Plan Ireland, Hope Foundation and Children in Crossfire.

At 7.30pm, preceding the Award Ceremony there will be a special screening of the TG4 documentary on the Monsignor, Pimpernel sa Vatican, which was produced by the Monsignor's Grandniece Catherine O'Flaherty and features the Wartime Exploits of the Monsignor

The weekend will also consist of an Exhibition of photographs at the Killarney Outlet Centre which will run from Friday 6th November for one week.

More detailed information on the Monsignor's life and a schedule of events and activities that are being planned to honour this great man can be found on