Career Profile – Priesthood

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Fr Jerry Carey



I am a Priest of the Diocese of Killaloe, which covers mainly Co Clare and parts of Tipperary and South Offaly. If I was interested in a title it would be Fr, however it doesn’t rate highly for me.   I work as a Pastor in a busy town called Ennis, a population of roughly 25 thousand people. Most of these would be Catholic, with a good average attending church on a reasonably regular basis.

I also work as a Chaplain in a Second Level Girls School. My first interest in following a life as a Priest was way back when I was at school, from there I went to seminary in St Patrick’s College Maynooth where I studied Philosophy and Theology, after which I graduated with a Bachelor of Divinity degree. Since then I have studied in St Patrick’s in Carlow to achieve a diploma in Liturgical Studies. I was ordained a Priest in June of 1984, and since then I have worked in Parish and schools.

The characteristics I believe necessary for this life are sensitivity to people as you find them; a willingness to listen and care for their well being; and an interest in journeying with people on a Spiritual/Faith journey, and finding ways for that journey to find expression. From a positive point of view, this life is incredibly rewarding, people place a trust in telling their story without fear of judgement, and this remains a really humbling experience.

Being there with people in great moments of celebration and at the same time being welcome to go there with them in darker times. As a balance, there is at times a feeling of aloneness, due to celibacy. This is not the same as loneliness as I know many people who are married become quite lonely. In a way this can be a good thing allowing for a lot more reflection on what is happening.

At the moment two things are on the agenda: Easter and the ceremonies in Parish. And secondly, I’m in the middle of organising a yearly trip for 45 young people to Taizé in France. The challenge right now for me as a Priest is to see a way forward through an ever-growing secular culture that is in my opinion fuelled by a booming economy. We must, I believe, find a place within this culture that is credible and stop moaning that it exists. is a national database of universities, colleges, institutes and providers of third level and PLC courses in Ireland. We operate a national search database of courses at certificate, diploma and degree level as well as providing information about career paths and directions.
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