Over one hundred lay theology students and members of their families came to the SMA Conference Centre in Dromantine on May 20th to meet with Archbishop Eamon Martin.


It was truly a wonderful evening as the students engaged in a vibrant conversation with Archbishop Eamon about strategies to promote better catechesis and evangelization within parish communities and families.

Students from “Soil for the Seed” in Benburb mingled with students from the “Priory” in Tallaght and students from “Go into My Vineyard” from Dromantine and it was uplifting to see so many laymen and women passionate about their faith and their study of theology.


Emmett Lynch spoke eloquently on behalf of the Benburb group, Margaret Copeland did likewise for the Vineyard Group and Philip Carder spoke beautifully from the perspective of the Priory Group.


Certificates were presented to students completing two years of the Certificate course but undoubtedly the highlight of the evening was the awarding of the Fr Andrew McNally Theology Cup to the best student in theology for the year. The cup was presented by Mrs. Therese Steele (sister of the late Fr Andrew) and she gave a lovely witty presentation speech that provoked bursts of laughter from the assembly. The recipient for 2014 was Mr Frank McDonnell, a fifth year student on the Vineyard course, and the rich applause that followed the announcement spoke volumes about the affection that the group felt for Frank who was a most deserving winner.