Unrepentant Fenian or reluctant Redmondite

Dear Editor, The picture on your front page (IC 06/08/2015) of Fr Robert McCabe honouring the “unrepentant Fenian” raises a question for at least one reader.

According to reports, O’Donovan Rossa in his later years was converted from dynamite to dialogue, embracing constitutionalism as a reluctant Redmondite. His lapse into peaceful means is explained by other accounts as a result of his dotage and in essence he remained a staunch Fenian. So was Fr McCabe blessing the grave of an “unrepentant Fenian” or as a contemporary description had him, “a mild and genial old gentleman”?

Yours etc.,

Patrick Fleming, 

Glasnevin, Dublin 9.