Canon Gerry McGarry Founder-Editor of The Furrow 1950
Canon McGarry was a national figure throughout Ireland because of his followers in The Furrow
pastoral monthly magazine which he began in 1950 and continued to edit for twenty years in
Maynooth and subsequently while in Ballyhaunis. The magazine is still in vigorous health! The chosen title, as heralded in its Mission Statement, was indicative of his approach to the rather settled and over-complacent Irish Church of the 1950s. It is still printed every month: ‘Yours to drive a new furrow, nor sow any longer among the briers’ (Jeremiah 4:3). It was a prophetic statement in the decade before the Second Vatican Council which began many Church reforms in the 1960s. Because he anticipated that he might run into difficulties in securing the necessary monthly approval from the then Archbishop of Dublin, he astutely had the magazine printed in Naas, in another diocese, where the more benign Bishop Tom Keogh ruled and where the journal continues to be printed.