A Chronology of Fr. Fahy
His Life and Work

This chronology has been written with notes kindly sent by Edward Walsh for the years 1805-1843, and with James M. Ussher's book for the remainder of Fr. Fahy's life (Father Fahy: a Biography of Anthony Dominic Fahy, O.P., Irish Missionary in Argentina 1805-1871, Buenos Aires, 1951). Edward Walsh's research is based on documents and letters in the archives of San Clemente, Santa Sabina, and Propaganda Fide, all of them in Rome, Sinsinawa Dominican Archives, Wisconsin, USA, and St. Mary's Tallaght, Dublin 24, Ireland.

1805: born in Loughrea, Co. Galway, son of Patrick a brewer of Barracks Street, Loughrea (11 January).

1828: clothed at Esker, receiving the religious name Dominic (4 August).

1829-31: studies in Rome (San Clemente). Receives all sacred orders at Latern Basilica between December 1829 and March 1831.

1831-33: studies in Rome (Minerva) and in Viterbo (La Quercia).

1833-34: at Rome (San Clemente by 30 April 1833) until departure for Ireland on
31 March 1834.

1834-36: in Somerset, Ohio and Kentucky, diocese of Cincinnati. Health already ruined by 11 October 1835.

1836: at Loughrea, recovering his health (September). Rector of pro-cathedral under bishop Coen of Clonfert.

1837: administrator at parish of Kilmoremoy (Ballina), diocese of Killala, under Dr Francis O'Finan O.P. (February-April). Signs document as such on 16 February 1837 and O'Finan at Ballina regrets his departure before 27 May.

1837-1838: curate Loughrea parish, diocese of Clonfert.

1839 (June)-1842: prior of Black Abbey, Kilkenny.

1843: left Ireland for Argentina (September).

1844: arrives in Buenos Aires from Liverpool in the brig Plata (11 January).

1847: writes to the Archbishop of Dublin to recommend the Irish to emigrate to Argentina. At the same time, heads a committee to launch the Irish Relief Fund, which remits £411-1-10 to Dublin for the victims of the famine in Ireland.

1848: opens the Irish Immigrant Infirmary of Buenos Aires, primarily to provide refuge and nursing to the sickly newcomers. Eventually, the infirmary became a permanent hospital on a small scale for all who needed medical treatment.

1849: a negative article against Buenos Aires Governor Juan Manuel de Rosas is published in the Dublin Review (March). Fr. Fahy writes a letter to La Gaceta Mercantil to support Rosas and to express his 'gratitude towards this country and its Government.' He is thanked for his intervention by the State Congress.

1850: purchases a property in the outskirts of the city facing the streets now known as Riobamba and Tucumán, with the intention of raising thereon an important Irish Hospital.

1852: having arranged for Capilla San Roque on the corner of Defensa and Alsina streets in Buenos Aires (and immediately adjacent to Convento San Francisco) to be used by the Irish community, Fr. Fahy provides benches, an organ, a confessional and a pulpit. Every six months, he travels to the interior parishes of the province and, during five or ten days, he held stations in different districts to say Mass, administer the sacraments, and preach.

1853: arranges and pays for the expenses of six seminarians of All Hallows in Dublin to be especially prepared to act as Irish chaplains in Argentina.

1856: divides the territory into four chaplaincies, and each one is entrusted to a resident chaplain, with Fr. Fahy as their Dean or Vicare Forane. The Sisters of Mercy arrive in Buenos Aires (24 February). Fr. Kirwan is sent by Fr. Fahy to visit the Catholics residing in Falklands/Malvinas Islands.

1859: the Sisters of Mercy are in charge of the Convent, the School for Girls, the House of Mercy, the public Chapel and the Hospital.

1862: opens a school for boys, which is directed by Fr. Kirwan and Fr. Curran.

1863: All Hallow seminarians sponsored by Fr. Fahy are ordained and travel to Argentina. Fr. Thomas Carolan arrives in 1859 and is appointed later to the western chaplaincy. In 1860 Fr. James Curran lands and remains in the city. Fr. James Kirby arrives in 1860 but dies two years later. Fr. Michael Connolly is ordained in 1860 and is sent to replace Fr. Kavanagh in the southern district. Fr. Largus Michael Leahy arrives in 1862 and is appointed to Carmen de Areco, and Fr. Patrick J. Dillon arrives in 1863 and is sent to Merlo.

1864: Fr. Fahy and Fr. Eduardo O'Gorman are named Honorary Canons of the Cathedral Church of Buenos Aires by President Bartolomé Mitre (19 May).

1865: a committee of Irish residents and others offer £600 to Fr. Fahy to buy his personal house. He hands to money over to the Sisters of Mercy. The Irish Hospital of Buenos Aires is equipped with an additional wing in Riobamba and Viamonte streets, including a ward, dispensary, kitchen and eight rooms.

1867: six new Irish chaplains are incorporated to the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires, including Fathers Patrick Lynch, Samuel O'Reilly, Thomas Mulleady, Felix O'Callaghan, John Baptist Leahy, and Edmund Flannery (arrived in 1868). Their studies at All Hallows were financed by Fr. Fahy.

1868: directly and through his chaplains and the Sisters of Mercy, Fr. Fahy provides important services to the community during the cholera outbreak.

1871: dies of a heart attack during the yellow fever outbreak (20 February). His remains are buried in the diocesan clergy vault of Recoleta cemetery, and later removed to a monument built by Earley sculptors of Dublin.

The Irish Argentine Historical Society © 2005
Last Update: August 2007


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