A film on Mayo’s (indeed Ireland) most famous Priest, Father Patrick Peyton C.S.C (1909 – 1992) is due to be released in October later this year. The documentary ‘Pray’ will tell the story of ‘The Rosary Priest’ who was born in Attymass near Ballina. At the age of nineteen Patrick and his brother Thomas emigrated to the United States to join their sister Nellie.
Patrick and his brother Thomas entered the minor seminary of the Congregation of Holy Cross in Notre Dame, Indiana. During his final year in the seminary Patrick was diagnosed with tuberculosis (TB). Patrick was very weak and was given little hope by the medical team of recovering to full health. Patrick had great faith and prayed to the Virgin Mary for a recovery to health. His health began to improve to the amazement of the medical profession.
At the age of thirty-two Father Patrick Peyton was ordained to the Priesthood on 15th June 1941. Father Peyton was so grateful to the Virgin Mary for his health that he, with the permission of his superiors, began the Prayer Crusades, which took him all over the world preaching the importance of prayer, especially family prayer. He was the founder of ‘Family Rosary’ and ‘Family Theatre’. His famous slogan was “The family that prays together stays together”.
During his lifetime Fr. Peyton made an annual pilgrimage to Knock Shrine. In 1991 he celebrated his Golden Jubilee of his ordination came back to his native Parish of Attymass to celebrate it. A tree was planted beside the church to honour the occasion. Father Patrick Peyton C.S.C passed way on 3rd June 1992 in Los Angeles, United States.
Father Patrick Peyton C.S.C Memorial Centre Attymass
As birthplace of Father Patrick Peyton C.S.C. Attymass was selected as the Irish location for the memorial centre to commemorate his life and work. The Fr. Peyton Memorial Centre was opened in 1998, and last year it had some 15,000 visitors.
The road to Sainthood
In June 2001 Cardinal Seán Patrick O’Malley, OFM Cap, Archbishop of Boston announced a formal declaration opening the cause for sainthood of Father Peyton , after receiving approval from the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of the Saints. This process earned Father Peyton the title ‘Servant of God’. On 18th December 2017 Pope Francis named Father Patrick Peyton as Venerable, one step closer to canonization.
For more information on ‘Pray’ please visit praythefilm.com