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Death of former press secretary to Irish Bishops

By Sarah Mac Donald - 23 August, 2013

Jim Cantwell oversaw John Paul II's visit to Ireland during 25 years as press director.

Jim Cantwell. Photo: courtesy of RTE

Jim Cantwell. Photo: courtesy of RTE

The death has taken place of Jim Cantwell who was the first director of the Catholic Press and Information Office.

For over twenty-five years Mr Cantwell served as press secretary to the Irish Catholic Bishops before retiring in 2000.

The 75-year-old died at Blackrock Clinic surrounded by his family. 

He co-ordinated the coverage of Pope John Paul II’s visit to Ireland in 1979.

Born in Waterford in 1938, he trained as a journalist before becoming a press officer for the Irish bishops in 1975.

He helped produce the Irish Church’s first guidelines on dealing with clerical child sexual abuse in the mid 1990s.

Mr Cantwell is survived by his wife Eileen, two sons and two daughters, Nina, Rhona, Paul and Michael.

His funeral will take place on Saturday morning (24th August) in St Michael’s Church, Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin. 

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