Monday 19 February 2018

Kathleen's work for St Aidan's Cathedral will never be forgotten

Kathleen Cardiff
Kathleen Cardiff

ENNISCORTHY is at the loss of one of the town's most enduring and familiar characters since the death last week of Kathleen Cardiff from Weafer Street at the age of 88.

A life-long resident of the town, she will be remembered especially for her practical devotion to the Catholic church which was recognised with a Papal Bene Merenti medal.

An only child, Kathleen played tennis in her youth. After stints with Armstrong's of Templeshannon and the Imco dry cleaners in Main Street, she spent 30 years of her working life as cashier on the staff of Creane and Creane insurance brokers also in Main Street.

Her efficiency, courtesy and complete reliability were appreciated there throughout her time there. She retired in 1992.

Coming from a musical family, she took part in shows presented by the town's light opera society and was also a stalwart of various choirs over the years, singing at Mass in both St. Senan's church and St. Aidan's Cathedral.

Mourners recalled that she took part in the Ferns diocesan pilgrimage to Lourdes on more than 50 consecutive occasions.

Much of her life revolved around the cathedral where she could be relied on to count money, assist at coffee mornings in the Manse and keep the vestments or altar cloth in order.

However, it was as the person responsible for flower arrangements in St. Aidan's that she will be best remembered.

Recruited originally by Father Eustace, she claimed to have no particular expertise when she first took up the job – but she surely put that right with practical on-the-job self-training.

The highlight of her lengthy stint was probably the occasion that a relic of Saint Therese of Lisieux was brought to the cathedral in 2001. To mark the occasion, the altar was festooned in arrangements, which made a great show. She finally stepped down after four decades of blooms and greenery in 2008.

Kathleen's contribution to the life of the cathedral was underlined by the presence of former Enniscorthy serving curates including Father Bobby Nolan, Father Pat Sinnott and Father John Carroll for Friday's funeral in the familiar surroundings of the cathedral.

The Mass was celebrated by Father Billy Swan who was joined by Bishop Denis Brennan. The bishop spoke of a woman who did not know the meaning of the word timid and who was never one to stand idly by when there was work to be done.

Someone who enjoyed good health for most of her life, she passed away after a short stay in Wexford General Hospital. She is survived by her cousin Fergal Cardiff and her death was followed shortly by that of her cousin Elva Looney from Wexford Town who sadly died on Saturday.

Kathleen Cardiff's presence will be much missed by her neighbours and her many friends.

Gorey Guardian

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