Pro-Life Report

Pro_Life Poster


Edward J. Wallace, Chairman


Welcoming the Unborn “Stranger” Among Us:

Recent issues of both Time and Newsweek seem to point to a majority of Americans finally coming around to realize that life begins at conception. Of course, this has been the teaching of the Catholic Church all along. One can only hope this is a sign that American society may be beginning to welcome the “stranger” who is the infant in the womb to the category of human personhood, acknowledging the human dignity and civil rights denied the infant in the womb by Roe v. Wade in 1973.

Roe v. Wade made the fetus out to be a predator, a threat to family happiness, another potential mouth to feed who might hamper the health and well being of other family members already there. There would simply not be enough food and clothing and square footage of housing space to accommodate one more human being. The infant in the womb, the stranger in our midst, must go.

A friend of mine described a great success story he witnessed at a pro-life prayer vigil in front of an abortion clinic. There, he saw a pregnant woman guided away from the destruction of the infant in her womb by another woman, patiently holding a picture of a beautiful baby. Their conversation led the expectant mother to decide to investigate alternatives to abortion with the people at another clinic, a pro-life clinic.

That second woman overcame fear of the unknown with an attitude of welcome – and saved a life. May our time in prayer help us to contemplate the face of Christ in the unborn, and to see that in the unseen infant is a stranger who longs to be welcomed into our world. (An excerpt from When Did We See You, Lord, by Bishop Robert Baker and the late Fr. Benedict Groeschel).


God, our Father, You are the author of life and the defender and protector of the innocent and defenseless human life in the womb. Help us to welcome that most unwelcome of strangers in our American society, the innocent unborn. Help us, Lord, to see children as the joy of our lives…not hindrances, enemies, obstacles, or strangers.


Political Education

By Chairman Joe Roche


The Political Education Committee has decided to open up its column to include contributions from others who have an interest in working for a united Ireland. We welcome all suggestions, comments and contributions that will bring about a successful United Ireland Campaign.

The following is a contribution from brother Joe Farrell, a member of Division #9 Allegheny County Pennsylvania. Joe is also National Vice-president of the IAUC (Irish American Unity Conference). His writings and testimony have been used in many successful United Ireland petitions and resolutions.


A United Ireland: What Can We Do Here And Now?

First a question: why a united Ireland? And if this question is not asked in Irish American circles, believe me, it will always be asked in the halls of Congress, newspaper editorial boards, state legislatures, and anywhere else where we may try to influence people to take action in the cause of a United Ireland from America. Wolf Tone answered it best:

To subvert the tyranny of our execrable (British) government, to break the connection with England, the never failing source of all (Ireland’s) political evils, and to assert the independence of my country.

These sentiments should resound with every American; they are the sentiments of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams. No country is better governed by foreigners than it is by its own people, freely elected. This is the spirit of 1776, it is the principle that made America; we should sympathize and support all who seek for themselves what we accept without question.


What can we as Hibernians do here in America that will have an impact; that will actually move the cause of Irish unity forward?

  1. Seek unity. Join with and work with other like-minded Irish American groups, such as the Irish American Unity Conference, the Brehon Societies, Emerald societies, and others. Build support here for the idea of a united Ireland.
  1. Work for Justice. Partition has always depended on suppression of not only Irish Nationalism, but of the people of the Nationalist and Catholic communities in the North of Ireland. The result has been a legacy of official collusion in crimes dating back to the origin of partition — a point made forcefully by Anne Cadwallader of the Pat Finucane Center in her recently published book Lethal Allies. Publicizing these cases and demanding justice weakens the very foundation of partition, which is why the British Government stalls and obfuscates on every case, despite their treaty obligations under the Good Friday Agreement.
  1. Promote the United Ireland resolutions, “that Ireland is, and of right should be, one nation.” Lobby for their introduction in your state legislature; where they have been introduced, lobby for their passage, where they have been passed, thank those responsible. Seek their passage by other bodies: city councils, county commissions, other organizations, etc. George Trainor of the United Ireland campaign, the IAUC, and many AOH and LAOH members, divisions, counties, and states have worked long and hard for passage of the resolutions. Join them. Don’t depend on the “other guy” to do it; be “that guy.”
  1. Take it to Congress. The resolutions will be brought to Congress soon. Brief your Congressman, Senators, Congressional staff on them, and ask them to sponsor the resolution. End British stonewalling on collusion in political murders such as those of Pat Finucane himself, the Dublin-Monaghan bombings, etc., etc., etc. The duplicitous political gamesmanship of the British government violates not only decency and justice, but the Good Friday agreement, an international treaty reached through the good offices of the United States. British bad faith on the legal obligations to provide justice and due process raise questions, to put it euphemistically, about the trustworthiness of British law and justice. Ask your Congressmen and Senators to bring this up, forcefully, in the context of U.S. treaties of cooperation with Britain on legal matters, such as the Extradition Treaty and the MLAT.
  1. Build bridges. The support and understanding of other Americans will be critical in bringing the pressure of U.S. public opinion and our government for change and unity in Ireland. Reach out to people of other faiths and heritages to make the case for justice, freedom, and unity in Ireland.


If we don’t do it, who will? The time is now.

AOH/LAOH Notre Dame Hibernian Fund

By Ned McGinley

The Notre Dame Hibernian Fund, which is a shared project between the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians and the Ancient Order of Hibernians is a very important project for our Orders in it proclaims our affiliation with possibly the most visible Catholic organization in the United States. In my opinion and as a former National Organizer I believe that our Notre Dame affiliation is very important as we seek new members and to grow both our Orders.

Our meeting on the Notre Dame Campus was excellent and it was obvious that we would be treated with the highest respect. We were provided a meeting room, on campus in the student center, booked by the Financial Aid Office. We were greeted by Michael Riemke, who is an Assistant Director in FA, the successor to Joe Russo our long time representative on the ND campus.

We were immediately provided with a detailed account of our ND Hibernian Fund both with the Cushwa Center for Catholic Education and our Hibernian Scholarships. We also heard a detailed account of how scholarships are awarded, how the University of ND qualifies all students for financial aid, how the AOH/LAOH recipients for financial aid are chosen (actually participating in qualifying two recipients) as well as the overall cost of a UND education. Notre Dame is one of 62 institutions in the country that accepts students “Need Blind”, without assessing their ability to pay as part of the process. They then allot the need required by those students. Any monies from the fund following the providing of full need to our members children and grandchildren will go to others to reduce the debt of other AOH/LAOH children.


Next Bridget Keating, a recipient of the AOH/LAOH Scholarship while at ND, the daughter of my divisions Past President Joe Keating, and a speaker regarding the Fund at the New Orleans Convention. Bridget enthralled the committee with her autobiography from the campus and accounting degree, to working for Price-Waterhouse, returning to ND to work in Accounting, and being promoted to the Budget Director in the President’s Office at Notre Dame as a 28 years old. We have a powerful spokes person in that Office.


We then attended the Hibernian Lecture Series, financed from our Cushwa Center Funds, at the beautiful Hesburgh Library. We were introduced to Kathleen Cummings, the Director of the Cushwa Center, the President of the University of Limerick, and the Director of the Irish Studies Program Christopher Cox. In a conversation we realized that Fox graduated from Wilkes College, where I graduated and we had many common friends. Irish Studies is producing a three part series on the 1916 Easter Rising. We also sat with the actual Producer at the Lecture.


The Committee then was invited to a reception in the Library where readings and further talks were part of the program. We will have recommendations for having our AOH/LAOH members participate in a Hibernian Weekend at the Notre Dame Campus next year.


Notre Dame has utilized our Hibernian Fund contributions very well and they are very respectful of our contribution. The fund is split between two very important departments on the Notre Dame Campus and those funds have grown while still performing their assigned duties. The University is a very good custodian of the funds.


The Cushwa Center report: (as of June 30 2014)



Bank Value (AOH/LAOH Contributions) $168,815.00

  • Market Value (Growth of the Fund) $1,122,420.47
  • Projected Income (2014-2015) $43,590.00
  • Expenditures (2013-2014) $22,460.00


Sponsored events: Human Research Awards

  • Thomas Carney, U. of Baltimore “A Long Journey Home: From Connacht to the Mahoning Valley”
  • Robert Schumel, University of Notre Dame: “The ‘Exiled Children’ and Easter 1916: American and Irish Independence”
  • Hibernian Lecture: James R. Barrett, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign “The Irish Way: Becoming American in the Multiethnic City”
  • Sponsored Lecture: (National Ancient Order of Hibernians 2014 Convention in St. Louis, MO “Ireland’s ‘Terrible Beauty’ The 1916 Easter Rising and its Legacies”
  • Administrative Salaries: Director of the Cushwa Center (17%) and Administrative Coordinator (17%)


Hibernian Scholarship Fund: (as of June 30 2014)

  • Book Value (AOH/LAOH Contributions) $195,067.85
  • Market Value (Growth of the Fund) $1,144,277.35
  • Total Projected Earnings (2014-2015) $51,112.29

Notre Dame Financial Aid is “Need-Blind and “Need-Based”.

There are presently two Scholarship Recipients for 2014-2015 and we added two more at the AOH/LAOH Hibernian Fund Meeting.

The documentation proves that the AOH/LAOH funds are well invested and allotted.

In closing we would like to thank the LAOH members of the committee. First Kathy Linton, Past National President, who as 2013-2014 LAOH Fund Co-Chair, provided invaluable background information on the last two years of the fund. Patricia O’Connell Ladies Vice-President and Hibernian Fund Co-Chair who did great research on the Cushwa Center’s relationship with our Orders. Maureen Shelton, Immediate Past National President who participated in and advised us at our meeting.

The AOH participants were: National Treasurer Danny O’Connell who provided excellent financial information on the past contributions to the fund Fund with our brother Brian Healy from New Hampshire attended the meeting. We also had National Director Patrick Sturdy from Michigan who again was invaluable at the meeting.

National President Brendan Moore tasked us with finding out whether Notre Dame was still worth the time and expense to our Orders. Following our day of meetings and participating in the Hibernian Lecture Series we would offer an enthusiastic “YES”. Thank you for the opportunity Worthy President.

BTW: The Provincial for the Congregation of Holy Cross Worldwide, who met us as we lunched following our meeting, is a Past President of King’s College, Father Thomas O’Hara and well aware of the AOH/LAOH. Danny’s cousin Sister Mary Ellen of the Holy Cross Nuns also dined with us after the Hibernian Lecture and was great company. Both are based on the ND Campus and will be there next year.





Irish Way & Study Abroad Scholarship Programs

Irish Way & Study Abroad Scholarship Programs
National Chairman’s Report
William J. Sullivan
National Board Liaison to New England


Recently I had the opportunity to visit Division 1 in Portland Maine. The Division meets at the Maine Irish Heritage Center, where many of the Division members are active in preserving Portland’s Irish and Hibernian culture. Among their many events is the annual commemoration at the Western Cemetery Great Hunger Memorial which was dedicated in 1996. Matthew Barker is the current Division President. I look forward to visiting with many of my Hibernian Brothers soon throughout New England.

In other news, the AOH and LAOH National Boards are again pleased to offer several Scholarship opportunities for the son, daughters and grandchildren of members. Our National Boards strongly encourages members to take advantage of these great scholarship opportunities. Here is some current information on these awards.


The Irish Way High School Scholarship: The 2015 Irish Way High School Program, which will take place next summer from June 28 to July 22, 2015 in Ireland, is a unique live and learn program for high school students in grades 10 to 12. Two $500 Scholarships are available. One of these scholarships is for the children and grandchildren of an AOH member and one of these scholarships is available for the children and grandchildren of an LAOH member. Anyone who would like an application or further information about the program should contact the Irish American Cultural Institute, PO Box 1716, Morristown, NJ 07962. The Irish Way telephone number is: 973 605 1991. An Application Request Form for the AOH & LAOH Irish Way Scholarship is also included in this issue of the Hibernian Digest. More information on this program is available by going to:

The AOH Study Abroad Scholarship: The National Board of the Ancient Order of Hibernians offers two (2) Junior Year Abroad Scholarships for the son or daughter or grandchild of an AOH member who has been accepted at an accredited college/university in Ireland. The deadline for the next round of applications for this scholarship is May 1, 2015. An Application Request Form for the Study Abroad Scholarship is included in this issue of the Hibernian Digest. More information on any of our scholarship programs is also available on the AOH National Website.

Executive Orders on Deferred Action

On Nov. 20, President Barack Obama announced Executive Orders on Deferred Action for some immigrants. This serves as tremendous relief from threat of deportation for Irish families with U.S. born children. Irish work-visa holders, as well as their spouses, now have eased ability to apply for permanent-resident visas and move between jobs in the U.S., which was very difficult in the past. The executive order doesn’t affect the undocumented status of those who arrived here after January 1, 2010, parents of DACA eligible children, or single Irish immigrants without U.S. born children.

Those who qualify, and only after background checks and successful completion of the application process, may be eligible by the end of 2015 to finally travel home to Ireland in a system known as Advanced Parole to adjust status or apply for visas they previously have not qualified for. The same timeline applies for humanitarian issues like emergency visits home for life / medical events. These parole-travel opportunities will not happen in the immediate future, and we are working now to clarify the details with U.S. agencies.

There will be many Irish who desire to travel home right away but that is not possible. Unscrupulous operators will try to take advantage of immigrants by offering false, expensive or deceptive processing fees that may lead to nowhere.

I ask every Hibernian to direct inquiries from Irish immigrants who may qualify to your AOH Immigration Chairman so that we may work with the Irish Immigration Centers and Irish Consulate to get real answers and help for Irish Immigrants. It is through those agencies that trusted, reliable advice and legal referrals can be found. A list of these trusted Irish Centers is found at:

Clearly, this is a stepping stone and we strongly feel we can move the remaining issues. Many indicators were that Congress might not have acted otherwise on immigration reform until as late as 2017. This action by the president doesn’t nearly take care of the long struggle of the Irish undocumented or for the men of Thar Saile, increase future flow of legal immigration for the Irish or put an end to injustices to the Irish caused by the 1967 Immigration Act.

We continue to work with tireless activists and lobbyists like Billy Lawless of the Chicago Celts and Bruce Morrison, the ILIR, Irish immigration centers, U.S. legislators and the Irish Embassy and Consulates to finish the deal. We need the Congress to act on immigration soon.

I ask every Hibernian to implore Congress to finish the job, give the Irish our visas back, and end 50 years of injustice to the Irish.


Yours in Our Motto of Friendship Unity and Christian Charity,

Dan Dennehy
National Immigration Chairman


I received a letter from a Division Officer who was inquiring about the requirements of appointing a Division Immigration Officer. Rather than my usual report allow me to share my response to his question.

Dear Brother,

A common misconception is that one has to be well versed on a Chair before taking it. No matter what chair it is, it is the responsibility of new Chairs to study the Blue Book and our National Constitution and learn the purpose and responsibility of the Chair. Therefore, I am indeed grateful for your  inquiry. The Constitution details my duties as National Chairman and therein you can see the responsibilities of the State, County and Division Chairs.




  1. Be the Convention Immigration Chairman and appoint six or more members (with the approval of the National President) to serve in the interim between conventions.
  2. Support and inform the membership on all legislative action for Improved Immigration between the U.S. and Ireland. Promote such actions in the U.S. and Ireland.
  3. Prepare and submit an article on the current immigration issues with Ireland and submit to the Editor of the National Hibernian Digest for publication in each issue.
  4. Report to the National Convention and National Board Meetings.


In a nutshell:
It is their responsibility of our Immigration chairs:


To familiarize themselves with the conditions and issues surrounding immigration from an Irish American perspective.

To maintain communication with the National Chair for queries, data and information.


To communicate actions on immigration that the Division, our communities and our elected legislators can participate in that would benefit Irish immigrants and the US.


To assist Irish immigrants wherever possible,


To assist the local Irish immigration centers whenever possible,


To work with other groups and legislators, whether Irish or US, to achieve these aims.


Some of the issues we support our members, Irish American and Irish immigrants are visa questions, dual citizenship, US Citizenship and directing those in need to legitimate social, employment, legal and health assistance.


Please share my contact information with your newly appointed chair.

I can always be reached by email or a (914)588-2710


Dan Dennehy




I am honored and grateful to be appointed by President Brendan Moore to continue to serve the National Board as your Immigration Chairman. I thank the many Hibernians that have become immigration chairs for their Divisions, and I ask more of you to become your Division County and State Chairs. I need your help to get this job done and the Irish immigration Centers value the AOH’s support.

I hope in the closing days of 2014, that we will see the needed changes in US Immigration Law that will allow the undocumented Irish and Irish men and women who desire to travel, work and stay in the US safely and legally.

Myself and my wife Siobhan, Executive Director of the Emerald Isle Immigration Center met twice with newly appointed Irish Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan along with Ambassador Ann Anderson and new NY Consul General Barbara Jones to discuss immigrant support, the plight of undocumented families, and also in my case our Irish Immigration lobbying efforts. They left with a clear idea of the support that the AOH gives both efforts and were truly grateful and inspired to give the President and Congress an urgent message; Do not retire this Congress without substantial action on immigration reform.

Myself and our coalition partners on Irish Immigration, Chicago Celts, ILIR and Irish Apostolate traveled to the White House in August to entreat the Administration to be rational about the Executive Order and include the provisions in the Senate Bills language on the E3 Visa in any such order. I am grateful former US Rep. Bruce Morrison, author of the successful legislation that bore his name in 1990, was able to join us and open some eyes with his opinion, which we share. He stated that reform should be about enforcement and not entitlement. People must live up to the standards we all apply ourselves to in order to stay in the US. The Irish have abided by the laws, paid their taxes and are a model for what this country should expect from those that desire.

We also discussed added 12 months more to the 12 Month J1 program as it is hard to find work and housing in that short time frame. This will take tremendous pressure off our Irish Immigration Centers, because when the reform does come, the demands on the Centers will multiply. To find out more about you nearest Irish Immigration Center visit

So please call and write your Senators, Representatives and the White House and tell them to act on immigration now before they “retire.” The Capitol Switchboard number is (202)224-3121 and you will be directed to any of your elected Officials. Please join the growing ranks of leading Hibernians across the US who have become Immigration Chairs!

Dan Dennehy

Irish American Heritage Month

by Neil Cosgrove, Chairman

Recently I read the story of Irish American Michael Dougherty. Immigrating when he was only 15 years old, he was in America less than two years when America’s Civil War broke out and you Michael volunteered for service with the Union forces. He is credited with an action that saved over 2,500 lives and would eventually earn him the Medal of Honor, before being captured and sent to the infamous Andersonville prison camp. There he may have come across fellow Irish immigrant the saintly Confederate Chaplin Fr. Whelan, who did more for the Union prisoners than the Lincoln War Department did for its imprisoned heroes.   Dougherty would be the only one of the 127 men captured with him to survive his internment. When repatriated home he was booked passage with his fellow prisoners by corrupt Union officials on the infamous S.S. Sultana which sunk on the passage home and is still the greatest nautical disaster in the history of the United States , yet Dougherty survived.   The article ended with the statement that Dougherty’s life” was that of an upright man who asked no reward for his service”. This Brothers, this is what IAHM is about, that we should not let such powerful stories of the contributions of thousands of Irish immigrants such as Michael Dougherty disappear from the American Story.

Brothers, now is the time to be reaching out to your State and Local representatives to ensure that IAHM is proclaimed in your local jurisdiction. We have made tremendous progress, but let’s ensure that at a minimum every state with an AOH presence recognizes March as Irish American Heritage Month. Let us work with our politicians to make these proclamations a meaningful statement on celebrating the contributions of Irish Americans Let us as Hibernians on this 25th anniversary of Irish American Heritage Month back up these proclamations with action on our part in our local communities with appropriate ceremonies and activities that bring the important contributions of Irish immigrants and their descendants to the general public . This is particularly important at this critical time in the immigration debate, where the Golden Door still has the “No Irish Need Apply” sign firmly in place while it readily swings open for others, it is vital to remind America how much Irish Immigrants such as Michael Dougherty have done for this country and what we as a nation are losing by an immigration policy that unjustly discriminates against todays potential Irish immigrants.

Let us bring back meaning to the St. Patrick’s Day season and remind ourselves, our children and our communities what the Irish have done for America and what they can do today if given a chance. Please contact me so we can share your successes with the Order at

With Best Wishes for a Blessed Christmas, a Healthy and Prosperous New Year and a March where our proud heritage and its noble contributions to America are recognized



Mike McCormack

The AOH has long been noted for its remembrance of historical events with plaques, memorial stones and statues. The recent Barry Plaza at Barry Gate at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis was certainly one of the most impressive, but other memorials continue to be remembered because that’s what they are for – to educate and remind future generation of the deeds of our ancestors. On October 12, Hibernians gathered at Saratoga National Historical Park in Stillwater, NY, to remember a contemporary of Commodore Barry – another American Revolutionary hero, Timothy Murphy. The commemoration took place at a plaque that the local AOH had erected in his honor and to the memory of all Irish and Irish-American supporters of America’s Revolution. Murphy was the son of Donegal immigrants to Pennsylvania and, as part of Dan Morgan’s sharpshooters, he was the sniper who took out General Fraser and Sir Francis Clarke at the Battle of Saratoga. The resulting confusion in the leaderless British ranks led to an American victory and resulted in Burgoyne’s demoralizing surrender of his entire army – an event unheard of in the annals of British military history. It was the battle that turned the tide of the American Revolution and the event that convinced France to become an ally of the patriot’s cause. The New York Times Magazine proclaimed the victory at Saratoga, “The Most Important Battle of the Last 1,000 Years.” Congratulations to the Saratoga Hibernians for remembering and keeping the tradition alive.

I’m sure that with the coming centenary of the Easter Rising of 1916 there will be many commemorations to remember the courage and dedication of not only those who fought, but those who supported the goals of the Rising. One that is being planned is the creation of a memorial to John Devoy by the Kildare Society. Devoy was the ‘man behind the man’ in that he was the one who sent Tom Clarke back to Ireland to rejuvenate the dormant IRB and guide them to the Easter Rising. Devoy, as head of Clan na Gael, was also instrumental in raising needed funds in America for that milestone in Irish history. When we go back to the origins of the Easter Rising, John Devoy was one of the main supporters in the Fenian tradition of Stephens, O’Mahony, Luby, O’Leary and O’Donovan Rossa. (See Profiles in Patriotism in this issue). For more info go to:

Another memorial to commemorate the men and women who participated in the Easter Rising of 1916 is being planned for a 2016 dedication in Suffolk County, Long Island, NY. A committee made up of local Irish organizations including the Brehon Society, the AOH, the Police and Fire Emerald Societies, and others is hard at work. They have already secured a prominent location at the county’s Cohalan Court Complex in Islip, secured 501c3 designation and begun fund raising. As with other memorials, it will be the site of annual commemoration ceremonies to keep the memory of those who supported Irish independence alive for future generations. For more information check out

I’m sure that there are many other dedications or commemoration ceremonies in the planning stages and I would like to learn about them. If you or your community organizations are planning something to mark the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising which took place on April 24, 1916, won’t you please let me know so that I can publicize the effort. Just drop me a line or a flyer to Mike McCormack, 37 Harrison Ave, Centereach, NY 11720 or call me at (631) 732-1390. You can also send me an e-mail at . In all cases I will not only publicize your effort, but will add you to a listing I hope to prepare for the 2016 commemoration festivities in Ireland to highlight what Irish-America is doing to commemorate the event in which many of their parents and grandparents had a significant supporting part. If nothing is planned, let me know that too and perhaps we can get you to participate in a nearby activity. It may be too early to determine dates and times, but keep me in mind during the coming year. Check the sixteen brief biographies of the martyrs of 1916 on the Suffolk County Easter Rising website, copy them and distribute them to anyone you wish. It’s all about keeping their memories alive!

In line with that thought, we offer our congratulations to the New Orleans Irish on the thoughtful commemoration of An Gorta Mor and the celebration of the contributions made by the Irish, not only to Louisiana, but to America. The four-day event, from November 6 through 9 was chaired by AOH VP Judge Jim McKay and the Irish government in the person of Jimmy Deenihan, former Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and currently Minister of State for the Diaspora. Minister Deenihan chose NOLA as the central site for the annual world-wide commemoration of the Great Hunger because during the middle-to-late 1800s, it was such welcoming port of immigration for Ireland’s starving children that it became the most Irish city in the American south. Well done!

In this issue we begin a series called Profiles in Patriotism defining the heroes of 1916 as the roots of Ireland’s Liberty tree. Check out the histories on AOH.COM, click on ‘Historical Happenings’ and scan to December 2012 for a story about Christmas in Ireland. Also go to NYAOH.COM, click on ‘Historical Happenings’ and scan to November 2013 for a revealing look at Thanksgiving. You can also google shamrockandclover/books for Division readings on Irish history and for stocking stuffers for Christmas. Until next time, keep well, keep the faith and keep the tradition alive.

Stay Organized! Stay Strong! Stay Catholic!

Director Delaney
National Director, Co-Organizer


Stay Organized! Stay Strong! Stay Catholic!


Brothers, did you know that prospective members of the AOH may apply online? Sean Pender and I have processed more than 75 online applications for membership in only three months from ! Applications received from the website are forwarded to State (or Division) Organizers and Presidents for follow-up. Making application easy for prospective members is one way the National Board is facilitating growth!


In the September/October issue I introduced the “Organization Triangle:” CATHOLICISM—IRISH-AMERICANISM—FRATERNITY. Please send Sean and me your success stories so they can be shared with our brothers throughout the country!


Those who have experienced the Latin Mass know that the mystery, symbolism, and ritual of that celebration are truly remarkable. It is rumored that in the midst of the American Revolution then General George Washington, while in the “Catholic Colony” of Maryland, was introduced to the Catholic Mass. Upon leaving the church and reaffixing his three-point, Washington turned to his host and uttered in awe, “How the Reformation beat that I do not know.”



Our faith is foundational to our brotherhood and our parishes are ripe grounds for recruiting new members and retaining those involved. Most of these ideas can involve prospective members as well!

  • Prayers ‘n’ Pints/Theology on Tap. We are in Advent now, and Lent will be here before long. Consider a half-day or full-day local “retreat” for your Division with your chaplain. In a relaxed atmosphere, have a serious theological discussion, Reconciliation, and Mass followed by a social event. If you’re not able to pull-off one on your own, consider having your Division join your Diocese’s Theology on Tap (many have it), or similar event.
  • Attend the annual March for Life. Not all brothers are able to make the trip to Washington, DC, for the annual Right to Life Breakfast and March for Life, but if you can, you should. This is an opportunity for brothers from throughout the country to demonstrate our unity and conviction. If you are not able to attend, consider holding your own event locally concurrent with the Right to Life Breakfast in Washington, DC.
  • Consult your Diocese’s Young Adult Ministry. If you have or are seeking youthful brothers, consider attending Young Adult Ministry events to let them know about the AOH.
  • Pray the Rosary. At Division meetings say a decade of the Rosary together for the Blessed Mother’s intervention to increase our membership. This prayer has tremendous centering power and is central to our faith.
  • Support a Religious Community in Your Backyard. Do you know what religious communities are in your town? Chances are you have several fulfilling the educational, healthcare, and social work needs of your community. Find them and commit to support them with your time, energy, and/or dollars. In this way we practice Christian Charity and instill and sustain in brothers a sense of purpose.


Seriously consider over the coming months how your division activates CATHOLICISM, IRISH-AMERICANISM, and FRATERNITY among members. What are your division’s strengths? Where are your opportunities for development? How can this National Board facilitate your achievement of your goals?


Take a look at how these brothers are practicing the “Organization Triangle:” CATHOLICISM: On August 14 the Padraig Pearse Division (Kansas City, MO) awarded $500 scholarships to four rising-high school students attending Catholic Schools. IRISH-AMERICANISM: In September the Sons of Aidan Division (Washington, DC) lobbied the St. Patrick’s Parade of Washington, DC, to honor as Co-Grand Marshals Brothers John McInerney (posthumously) and Jack O’Brien for their efforts in memorializing Commodore John Barry. FRATERNITY: On November 15 the John F. Kennedy Division (Scranton, PA) held a Membership Drive where they showed the Notre Dame football game; the $10 cover charge satisfied new members’ first-year dues.


Let us renew our promise to Promote Friendship, Preserve Unity, and Practice Christian Charity each time we gather as brothers. Please note my contact information: or on 202.510.1874.

Director’s Report

Greg Seán Canning

While the Good Friday Agreement has brought a welcome peace to northeast Ulster, many problems and challenges still exist for the nationalist communities. Recent and past events in the six northern counties of Ireland exemplify why the support from FFAI is still essential to the continued success of the Agreement.

  • Flag protests in Belfast,
  • violent loyalist marches through Catholic areas,
  • burning of nationalist and catholic effigies and symbols on the 12th of July,
  • reneging by the DUP on the Long Kesh peace memorial project,
  • ridicule of Nationalist politicians for using the Irish language,
  • recent imprisonments and convictions of nationalists by kangaroo courts, and
  • the continued obstruction of truth and justice by the British government and Unionist politicians.

These examples identify just a few of the challenges and injustices still faced by the Nationalist communities within the Six Counties.

The need for a strong commitment by our AOH Brothers to this year’s Christmas Appeal is extremely important if we are to work effectively to accomplish our mission as Hibernians to achieve for the Irish people a United and Free 32 County Nation.

Without your financial support, we cannot assist is addressing the injustices imposed upon nationalist communities by unionists, nor support those programs that promote cross community cooperation, social change, economic development, political prisoner family support, and cross boarder collaboration.

Without your financial support through the Christmas Appeal, the FFAI would become an ineffective tool that would only serve to please the militant unionist population and those who would like to see a reversal of the progress that has been made since the implementation of the Agreement at the turn of the century.

To achieve our goals for this coming year, Paul and I are asking every State, County and Division President to recommit themselves to our Hibernian Goal of achieving a United and Free 32 County Nation by reaching out to their members and promoting pledges and contributions to this year’s Christmas Appeal. Remember: No donation is too small; No donation is too great!

Brothers, please ask yourselves these important questions:

  • What did you do with the Christmas Appeal packet that was mailed out to you?
  • Did you address the importance of supporting this worthy endeavor among your members?
  • Have you been actively seeking commitments from your respective Boards and members for pledges and monetary donations?
  • Are you periodically sending out reminders through your email system?
  • Are you doing everything possible to help achieve our goal in promoting the unification of the Irish People?

Again, Paul Gowdy and I would like to encourage all Hibernians to recommit themselves in making every effort this year to support this worthy and extremely important initiative.

Greg Seán Canning
National Director & FFAI Co-Chairman


P.S. As a reminder —

All donations for the Christmas Appeal are to be made out to “AOH FFAI Christmas Appeal”. Payments should be sent to Paul Gowdy at 13201 Rosselo Ave., Warren, MI 48088-3154. FFAI Co-Chairman Paul Gowdy is in charge of collecting all Donations.

Organizations requesting financial support should contact Greg Seán Canning at 4530 Caladium Court, Kissimmee, FL 34758-2156 or through the following email: FFAI Co-Chairman Greg Seán Canning is in charge of receiving all Applications for Financial Support.