24Nov A Priest’s Diary – new book from Brendan Hoban


A Priest’s Diary

Brendan Hoban

The word ‘diary’, used to describe these jottings, is a bit of a misnomer. Usually a diary is a private document, written for the author alone. It’s a way for writing to yourself and for yourself, not usually something to be shared with others.

This ‘diary’ is different in that it’s not so much a diary as such but a series of reflections on incidents and experiences, particular encounters which have survived in memory the often limited and repetitive experiences of parish life.

During the course of almost half a century of priesting, I’ve had seven different appointments, most of which were to rural parishes in Mayo and Sligo. While my irregular efforts to keep a regular diary – or at one point even to embrace the journaling experience – never really survived more than a few weeks at a time, I took to noting and mulling over fragments on experiences, parishioners and priest-colleagues, a potpourri of incidents that led to a series of musings on parish life.

What follows are ruminations and sometimes reveries, musings on the bits and pieces of a priest’s life, a ‘diary’ of sorts of a country priest- including, let me emphasise, the adoption of a number of fictional personae in order to assume a variety of imagined characters.

Names, including place-names, have been changed, situations camouflaged, analogous experiences conflated and occasionally embellished in order to ensure that an appropriate privacy is respected.

Brendan Hoban

Price €15

Available from the following bookshops: 

  1. Castle St Bookshop, Castlebar… www.mayobooks.ie
  2. McLoughlin’s Bookshop, Westport…www.mcloughlin’sbookshop.com
  3. Knock Shrine Bookshop…..www.knockshrine.ie/bookshop
  4. Séamus Duffy’s Bookshop, Westport, Ph 098-26816
  5. Smyth’s Newsagents, Claremorris.
  6. Pastoral Centre in the Cathedral, Ballina.
  7. Easons Bookshop, Ballina.
  8. Carey’s Bookshop, Belmullet.
  9. Milo’s Newsagency, Enniscrone.