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Br. Cyrus Callaghan

 Date of Death: 21/10/2018
Place: Australia, Ashgrove
Province: Australia
Age: 90


Br. Cyrus was born in Brisbane on 4 January 1928 and celebrated his 90th birthday this year. He was the only child of Mary Matilda (nee Power) and Andrew Thomas Callaghan. He met the Brothers as a student at Rosalie and completed his schooling at the Juniorate in 1946. He received the habit in 1947 and professed First Vows on 2 July 1948. He made perpetual profession at Mittagong in 1953 and took the vow of stability in 1966. He lived as a Marist Brother for 71 years.

Like many Brothers of his era he had very little preparation for his ministry as a teacher. From the Novitiate he went directly to Darlinghurst for his first six months, and then onto St Joseph’s Hunters Hill. He had no Scholasticate and no opportunity to pursue studies. His first respite from the classroom came in 1972 when he travelled to Fribourg for the Second Novitiate. This lack of formal qualifications did not prevent him from developing into a very talented and able teacher and a highly competent and effective Deputy and Principal. Over a twenty year period he held these senior positions at Parramatta, Eastwood and Holy Spirit Grafton.

Br. Cyrus endeared himself to his students for his gentle manner, and ex-students still tell stories of his personal kindness. This was also his approach as Superior, when he held those roles at Parramatta, Eastwood and Grafton. The Brothers appreciated his friendliness, calm manner and good sense of humour. He was an excellent host and enjoyed opportunities to celebrate. He was particularly generous to his friends.

When he retired from school leadership and teaching, he took up general administrative duties at Hamilton and later at Ashgrove, where he spent the last 27 years in the community. He enjoyed being back in his home town and was near his parents who lived at Paddington for their final illnesses and deaths.

He was a cultured man; enjoyed classical music and had a deep knowledge of Opera which he particularly loved. In his healthier years, when he was mobile, he attended concerts whenever he could.