Br Michael Evaristus O'Malley

1910 - 1980

Bro O’Malley was one of those dedicated teachers, who faithfully discharged his duties in the classroom, in the games field, in the dining room, in the study hall and in the dormitory. His name features in the Book of Life.

He taught and ministered at St Joseph’s Nainital, St Joseph’s Kolkata, St Michael’s Kurji, St Marys Mt Abu, St Edwards Simla, St Columba's New Delhi.

Born in Limerick, he arrived in India in 1928. He was a character, a free spirit, kind gentle and with a great sense of humour. In short, when he was around, life seemed more beautiful.

He was a people's man, however in the early days he was constrained by language. Undaunted he studied Hind, in order to speak to fishermen and their families on the banks of the Ganges. He delighted in talking to them about their humdrum daily affairs, and the community always looked forward to his interesting and often humorous stories from the lives of these simple folk. So proficient did he become in the national language, that he taught Hindi! People were attracted to him because he entered into conversation with them so easily, and always on equal terms.

He was fascinated by crowds and could spend hours watching a Sikh procession in Delhi or attend the mammoth Sonepur Mela. Another fascination he had was for nature. He loved gardening, trees, flowers, birds, the poetic beauty of a sunrise or the massiveness of the snow capped Himalayan peaks.

He also had his fair share of suffering through misunderstandings or physically because of bouts so malaria, migraine or varicose ulcers. He bore all this with cheerful fortitude. His jolly cheerfulness, infectious chuckle, spontaneous one- liners, brightened the days of many a Brother. He celebrated his Golden Jubilee in Asansol at the annual gathering of the Brothers from the Province.

Bro O’Malley finally fell victim to cancer. Even during his last days in Holy Family Hospital, New Delhi, he would shuffle to the rooms of two other Brothers with minor illnesses, to offer a few cheery words. He finally passed into coma and died peacefully. He rests with many other stalwarts of the Indian Province in the York Road Cemetery, Delhi. RIP

— Transcribed from the CB remembrance volume, On Whose Broad Shoulders, 2015