Bega's ‘beautiful church on the hill’ above town

BEGA MISSION: The Reverend Dean Healey was born near the Lakes of Killarney in Ireland before becoming the parish priest at St Patrick's in Bega.

BEGA MISSION: The Reverend Dean Healey was born near the Lakes of Killarney in Ireland before becoming the parish priest at St Patrick's in Bega.

CONTINUING the 1888 Who's Who in the Bega Valley from the Centennial History of New South Wales.

THE Rev Dean Healey is a native of Ireland, and was born near the Lakes of Killarney, County Kerry, in 1838. He received his education at the local diocesan classical seminary in Killarney, and afterwards spent two years on the Continent.

He then entered the famous college of St. Patrick’s, Mayntooth, Ireland where for a period of six years he studied. Having heard of the scarcity of priests in Australia, he selected it as the field of his future labours.

He then made arrangements with the late Archbishop Polding, and in 1864 arrived in Sydney. His first appointment was to West Maitland as assistant priest, and subsequently he filled various positions in different parts of the diocese of Sydney.

In 1875 he was appointed to the mission at Bega, which office he filled when the late Archbishop Vaughan visited the district, when he was made Dean of Bega.

On the occasion of Cardinal Moran receiving from Rome the decrees of the Plenary Council, held in Sydney in 1885, by which he was required to appoint a diocesan council of advice, Dean Healy was one of the six priests chosen to fill the office.

At the same time he was appointed Vicar Forane of the southern districts of the diocese, and in accordance with the statutes of the Plenary Council, was made parish priest of Bega, which gave him a right to a “fixity of tenure”.

Dean Healy has ever been to the fore in assisting to advance religion and education, and it is owing to his labours that a beautiful church on the hill, overlooking the town of Bega, has been erected and an excellent site adjoining it has been secured on which it is intended soon to build a convent.

JOHN ROBERT McDONALD, coach builder and implement maker, was born in Kiama, New South Wales, in 1856, in which place he served his apprenticeship.

In 1881 he moved to Bega and started business on his own account, in which he has been very successful. 

Mr McDonald gives his special attention to the manufacture of coaches, buggies, drays and agricultural implements.

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