Lit­er­ary skills alive and well in Kil­lar­ney

The Kerryman (North Kerry) - - NEWS - By KATH­LEEN O’SUL­LI­VAN

ONE would not be stray­ing too far from the truth by pre­sum­ing the fu­ture of lit­er­ary ex­cel­lence is amongst the youth of Kil­lar­ney af­ter Tues­day, when pupils scooped top prizes in the 2018 Hugh O’Fla­herty Schools Lit­er­ary Com­pe­ti­tion.

Mas­ter­ing the art of writ­ing and em­body­ing the hero­ism of Mon­signor Hugh O’Fla­herty in their works was some­thing pupils in Kil­lar­ney have spent a number of weeks do­ing, and their tal­ent was un­doubted at a spe­cial prize-giv­ing cer­e­mony held at Kil­lar­ney Li­brary on Tues­day morn­ing.

As part of a range of events held this year to cel­e­brate the Hugh O’Fla­herty Me­mo­rial Week­end, school pupils of Kil­lar­ney were in­vited to en­ter po­ems and es­says in a number of cat­e­gories at both pri­mary and sec­ondary level.

With Kil­lar­ney be­ing the home of Mon­signor Hugh, who passed away 55 years ago this month, his spirit was wholly cap­tured by the pupils, whom the judges said “ad­dressed the ‘ hero’ as­pect with di­verse trib­utes in their es­says, with the vary­ing ap­proaches and re­sponses be­ing truly heart-warm­ing.”

The win­ner of this year’s sec­ond level school’s po­etry cat­e­gory was tran­si­tion year stu­dent in St Brigid’s Sec­ondary School Kil­lar­ney Laura Looney with her poem ‘A Hu­man­i­tar­ian’s Point of View’.

One win­ner was not enough in the pri­mary schools fifth/sixth class es­say com­pe­ti­tion. Thus, the vic­tory was shared be­tween Holy Cross Mercy School sixth-class stu­dent Ciara O’Sul­li­van; and Bray­den Slat­tery and Conor O’Grady, who are sixth-class stu­dents in The Monastery.

Bray­den and Conor were also part of the win for The Monastery Pri­mary School in the best pri­mary school’s col­lec­tive en­tries.

“Most en­trants dis­played a wish that Mon­signor Hugh’s legacy of hu­man­ity, courage, care, in­tel­li­gence, en­ergy, self­less­ness and enor­mous for­give­ness will forever in­spire more he­roes to fol­low with a stride on a road of heroic mis­sion,” the judges added.

Kil­lar­ney Cham­ber of Tourism and Com­merce Vice Pres­i­dent Paul Sherry pre­sented the prizes on the day and com­mended the young peo­ple and the event it­self in sus­tain­ing the hu­man­i­tar­ian mes­sage of Mon­signor Hugh O’Fla­herty.

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