By Jimmy Rhatigan
A POPULAR pastor who delighted in leading a vibrant rural parish in South Kilkenny has passed away suddenly while on holidays.
Fr Nicholas Flavin who was immersed in a host of activities in the parish area of Dunnamaggin, Kilmoganny and Windgap was alone on holidays in Alicante, a port city on Spain’s Costa Blanca when he became ill while swimming at his family’s apartment pool.
He was devoted to his parish since being appointed in 2000.
He was rushed to a local hospital where he was on a life support machine before he died.
Alarm bells rang in the parish he loved when he did not arrive home from his two-week break, as scheduled, on Monday of last week.
His remains are expected home for burial this weekend but at the time of going to press no definite arrangements were available.
Kilmacow-born Nicholas truly was a priest of the people.
He was President of Dunnamaggin GAA Club, he loved a game of bridge in Kilmoganny Hall on Wednesdays and he delighted in attending plays and drama at the same venue.
He was an ardent supporter of the Kilkenny Hunt and was always in the vanguard of community celebrations, fund-raising and parish activities of local clubs and organization.
St Joseph’s Home in Kilmoganny was perhaps his home for home. He had great respect for staff, delighted in services provided for the elderly and he took pride in how a community looked after its own.
He had been battling illness for some time. That he did with courage and without complaining.
He was a past pupil, teacher and eventually principal at St Kieran’s College where his lover of hurling was fostered.
Fr Nicholas was 78 his great admirable will be that he served his people to the end with all the energy he had in his body.