| 1st Oct 2009, 09:29 AM |
At our last meeting in September, James Li showed me a memorial booklet published by the St. Ignatius Church in Singapore to commemorate Fr. O'Neill. He asked me to scan some of the pages to share with our classmates on our blog . I flipped through the whole book and can only marveled at the speed and the excellent quality the booklet was put together, as it was published soon after Fr. O'Neill's funeral. I could feel that Fr. Tom, as he was affectionately known in his parish, was truly loved and missed by his congregation in Singapore. To gain a better insight to the man, I have uploaded, in addition to the pictures, some pages written by Fr. O'Neill's family members and also by Fr. Tseng. I was amazed at the deep devotion, dedication and sacrifice of the O'Neill family to the church. His only and younger brother is also a Jesuit priest in Ireland. Can you imagine the sentiment if it were a Chinese family?
Among the many tributes from the congregation, one stood out in my memory. One of the parishioners wrote that he was walking on the sidewalk near the church one day and suddenly he started to hear the most beautiful heavenly singing. For a moment, he thought he was undergoing a spiritual revelation. Then he found out it was Fr. Tom singing and riding on his bicycle, approaching from behind. What a free-spirited man! After reading through the book, I can only say that we have all read about saints and their life stories in prints, but Fr. O'Neill came closest to being one that ever walked among us. We are indeed very privileged to have known him in person. The booklet also contains a DVD that documents Fr. O'Neill's life through slide shows of his photo collection. If anyone is interested in obtaining a copy, please contact me for further information.
(Please click once or twice on the photos and click twice on the texted pictures to see the enlarged version)