Société des Missions Africaines – Province d’Irlande

young francis né le 10 septembre 1897 à Lahinch
dans le diocèse de Killaloe, Irlande
membre de la SMA le 22 juillet 1920
prêtre le 14 juin 1924
décédé le 17 janvier 1932

1924-1926 Whitson-Court, professeur au collège

1926-1931 missionnaire au Bénin

décédé à Cork, Irlande, le 17 janvier 1932,
à l’âge de 36 ans

(biographie en anglais à la suite)

Le père Francis Joseph YOUNG (1897 - 1932)

Le 17 janvier 1932, à Cork, retour à Dieu du père Francis Young, à l'âge de 36 ans.

Né dans le diocèse de Killaloë (Irlande) en 1897, Francis Young commença ses études chez les Franciscains, puis entra en 1919 aux Missions Africaines. Il fit son serment en 1920 et fut ordonné prêtre en 1924. Il fut missionnaire au Bénin, à Ibadan en particulier. Rentré en 1931, il mourut d'une crise cardiaque au cours de son congé à Cork, le 17 janvier 1932.

Father Francis Joseph YOUNG (1897 1932)

Francis Young was born at Lahinch, Co Clare, in the diocese of Killaloe, on l0 September 1897. He died in the S.M.A. house, at Blackrock Road, Cork, on l7 January 1932.

Francis (Frank) began his studies with the Franciscans at St. Bernadine's college, Buckingham, England, studying there between 19l4 19l7. Afterwards he was briefly attached to the Franciscan Friary, Chilworth, Surrey. When Frank became eligible for conscription, he returned to Ireland. While on holidays in Kerry he met Maurice Slattery, the Irish Provincial, who led him to consider a missionary vocation. Frank came to the novitiate and house of philosophy, at Kilcolgan, Co Galway, in the autumn of 19l8, a member of the first class to study in that college. He studied theology at St. Joseph's seminary, Blackrock Road, from 1920 1924. He was received into the Society on 22 July 1920, and was ordained a priest by Bishop Daniel Cohalan of Cork diocese, at St. Joseph's church, Blackrock Road, on 14 June 1924. He was one of a group of eleven ordained on that day.

After his ordination Frank took up duty as a teacher in Whitsun Court college, near Newport, Wales. This minor seminary had been established in 1923 by the Superior General, Jean-Marie Chabert, with a view to extending the Society to Britain. The school started with seven students; later the number increased to thirty. It closed in 1928 when the remaining students were transferred to the care of the Dutch Province which opened a minor and major seminary at Ore Place, Hastings, in the south of England. Frank remained on the staff for two years, until 1926, when he was appointed sub editor of the African Missionary, the Irish Province's monthly journal, which presented the Society and its missions to the public. However the greater need for priests for Africa cancelled this appointment, and in 1926 he set out for the West Coast, where he was assigned to the vicariate of the Bight of Benin.

This jurisdiction, established in l870, which extended over south and western Nigeria and included some northern territory, had its ecclesiastical capital at Lagos. When Frank arrived the vicar apostolic was Bishop Ferdinand Terrien and although the number of Irish members was increasing, most of the senior staff were still continental missionaries (mainly from France and Alsace). Frank's first appointment was to the Ibadan district where he was posted to Oke-Are station under the superiorship of Joseph Weiss. Oke-Are mission was the first station in Ibadan, founded in 1895 under the patronage of St. Augustine. Together Frank and Fr. Weiss not only catered for a large parish community and the outstation of Ikire, but they also supervised St. Theresa's inter-vicarial minor seminary - a vital institution which supplied secondary education for all candidates for priesthood in south-western Nigeria at that time.

In 1927 there were some 18 candidates in training. Frank's outstanding merits and abilities were soon recognised and, before long (in 1929), he was named to the post of supervisor of schools, a senior position in the vicariate, which called for great organising powers, tact and zeal. Frank discharged his duties from Holy Cross mission, the oldest station in Nigeria, founded in 1868. On the appointment of a new vicar apostolic, Francis O'Rourke, in 1930 (when the vicariate was entrusted to the Irish Province), Frank relinquished the supervisorship for the post of secretary to Bishop O'Rourke. During the course of 1931 he played a leading part in organising the golden jubilee celebrations of Holy Cross cathedral, held in October 1931. He also was treasurer of the building committee for a new cathedral which Bishop O'Rourke decided to construct. Frank returned to Ireland on home leave shortly before the golden jubilee celebrations.

On January l7th, after a very brief illness (a heart ailment), Frank gave up his soul to God. He was only in his 35th year when he died. His brother Jim was a member of the Society, working in the Benin vicariate at the time, while his sister was a religious in the Poor Clare convent, Manchester.

He is buried at Wilton cemetery.