RepositoryJesuits in Britain Archives
Ref NoABSI/SJ/110
TitleFr Lawrence Murphy SJ (1888-1979)
LevelSub fonds
DescriptionThis small collection contains four letters between Fr Murphy and Provincials Bernard Hall SJ and William Maher SJ.
Admin_HistoryFr Lawrence Murphy SJ was born of Irish parents Mary and Denis on 10 August 1888 in Liverpool, England. He attended St Francis Xavier School and later the College where he attained very high honours in the matriculation exams.

In 1905 Fr Murphy entered the English Province of the Society of Jesus at Manresa. After his noviciate he was selected for higher studies at Oxford where he came out with a degree in Classics.

After a period at Stonyhurst Fr Murphy was sent for theology to St Beuno's. On account of the shortage of priests due to the First World War, Fr Murphy was ordained at the end of his second year of theology, in September 1921.

Fr Murphy was completing his tertianship in Ireland when Fr General Ledochowski asked for volunteers for Russia. Fr Murphy offered and was accepted. Later however Fr General decided it was not the right time for Russia and instead sent Fr Murphy to Madras, India. It was shortly before the end of his course when he received the order from the English Provincial telling him to go to Madras. He reluctantly began his journey to India immediately after pronouncing his last vows in the Society on 2 February 1925.

Fr Murphy's life in India began in June 1925 as one of the first members of the Loyola College religious staff. Soon he became the real director of English studies in the College. Keen on organising the English Honours Course in Loyola which was already affiliated in the Honours Courses in Economics and Mathematics, Fr Murphy managed to get the affiliation in English in 1930, before the course was suppressed in 1935.

In 1937 he was appointed Rector of the College and after one year he also took over the Principalship, which unfortunately coincided with the period of political turmoil and restlessness in owing to the outbreak of the Second World War. For many years from the beginning of his time at the College, he also performed roles as the chaplain of the Catholic students, chaplain of the Good Shepherd Convent, Director of the College Sodality, as well as confessor and spiritual father. Fr Murphy was relieved of his duties in 1942 and continued as Head of the English Department until 1954.

In 1958 he ceased to be a member of the University and began privately coaching students and helping with English classes in the Ryan Institute of Commerce.

From May 1979 Fr Murphy began to feel the weight of being in his nineties, and was taken to the Isabella Nursing Home a couple of days before his 91st birthday. Fr Murphy died four months later, on 10 December 1979.
Related MaterialArchive:
- For a black and white photograph in of Fr Murphy in clerical dress with three other men (crossed out on reverse: The Deputy High Commissioner and two OCR Boys) see: ABSI/SJ/PH/902

For his obituary see: Letters & Notices vol. 84, pp. 86-95
For obituary postscript see: Letters & Notices vol. 84, p. 152
DS/UK/37Hall; Bernard (1921-2020); Jesuit Priest1921-2020
DS/UK/53Maher; William (1916-2005); Jesuit Priest1916-2005
DS/UK/1207Murphy; Lawrence (1888-1979); Jesuit Priest1888-1979

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