RETIRED Rockhampton priest Fr Dan Moore died in Ireland on February 14, aged 79.
“Fr Moore was surrounded by his family and friends, and at the time of his death, was held constantly in the prayers of the people of Central Queensland who had become aware of his failing health,” a spokesman said.
He was ordained in St Hallows College, Ireland, on June 17, 1962, and prior to his return home to Ireland in July 2015 was the last Irish priest to serve Rockhampton diocese, having served for 53 years.
“In the diocesan publication The Review of 1986, Fr Moore quoted Jeremiah who said, ‘Halt at the crossroads, look well and ask which path it was that stood you in good stead long ago. That path follow and you will find rest for your souls’.
“To Father Dan in 1986, this meant that the path that stood him in good stead was his desire to be among his people.
“A favorite picture from his childhood was Jesus the Good Shepherd, carrying home the lost or wounded sheep.
“Over his life he sought to be that shepherd, in his words, ‘a priest who brought those who felt strangers from the Church back to her’.”
A self-described “workaholic”, Fr Moore had a drive and enthusiasm for changes heralded by the Second Vatican Council.
His ministry was founded on a knowledge that God is always happy to be with us, even though we sometimes disappoint him.
“On reflection on his ordained life it is clear that he was what he set out to be and that is, a priest of the people, who visibly enjoyed being a part of every parish family he served,” The Review said.
Parishes where he ministered included Yeppoon, North Mackay, South Mackay, Aramac, Moranbah, Dysart, Middlemount, Clermont, Rockonia-Frenchville, Emerald and Rockhampton – where he retired in 2005 but kept busy still serving at Mass centres and the Walkerston parish.
A requiem Mass was celebrated on February 17 at the Church of Holy Trinity, County Offaly, Ireland, with Rockhampton vicar general Fr Bryan Hanifin representing the people and the priests of the diocese.