Tributes pour in for Noonan's brother
Tributes have poured in for missionary priest Fr Jim Noonan, a brother of Finance Minister Michael Noonan.
Fr Noonan (78), who was a member of the Kiltegan Fathers, died at 8.30am yesterday at the Kiltegan Missionoary Society Care Centre in Co Wicklow.
A native of Loughill, Co Limerick, Fr Noonan - who had spent 47 years working as a missionary in West Africa - had returned to Ireland in 2010 to begin duty as curate of the parish of Foynes-Shanagolden.
Fr Tom Kiggins, a fellow Kiltegan Father, said: "Fr Jim was always evangelising. He was a man of the people ... a great missionary."
Bishop of Limerick Brendan Leahy described Fr Noonan (below) as "a remarkable priest and human being".
"He really was a remarkable man, a man who did quite remarkable work on the missions in Nigeria and in a very harsh environment there for all of 47 years," Bishop Leahy said.
Christened James, but known to his family and friends as "Jim", Fr Noonan was born to Timothy and Anne Noonan, on April 26, 1937.
He attended Mount Trenchard National School in Foynes from 1942 to 1950 before enrolling in St Patrick's Secondary School, Glin.
Fr Noonan's funeral is expected to take place in Kiltegan, Co Wicklow tomorrow, with a removal tonight.