73 year old Tommy Devine is ordained at Saint Mel's Cathedral in Longford.
Tommy is one of a family of fifteen, a former poultry exporter and musician. While he has come to the priesthood relatively late in life, Tommy has always been close to the church.
He never married, nor did he feel the need and he can't remember when he first wanted to become a priest but it was a long time ago.
Tommy developed his interest in music at Saint Mel's Cathedral and later studied music at the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin. He was an organist and choirmaster at St Joseph's church in Glasthule, and then deputy organist at St Francis Xavier on Francis Street in Dublin. He then came to St Mel's Cathedral and grew the popularity of the choir to more than sixty members.
Having confided in friends of his wish to be ordained, word then filtered through to the church authorities. He attended a special course at Maynooth College, and at the Institute of Pastoral Liturgy in Carlow. In 1981 he was ordained a Deacon and today he became Fr Tommy Devine. His ordination was performed by the Auxiliary Bishop of Dublin Dr Brendan Comiskey. In reference to Tommy's age, the Bishop said it would mean a re-write in the Guinness Book of Records.
After his ordination, Tommy told Peter McNiff that his goal is now
To bring souls nearer to God... and myself also.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 8 February 1982. The reporter is Peter McNiff.