Kenny delivers BC commencement address

Irish PM Enda Kenny has delivered the Boston College commencement address, telling graduates: “Live long and deep and comfortably in your own skin.”

His appearance at the Catholic school drew extra attention due to Archbishop of Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley’s decision to boycott the annual rite, where he traditionally would give the benediction.


Kenny at Boston College. Photo from

O’Malley has accused Kenny of “aggressively promoting abortion legislation” in Ireland. The cardinal and other church leaders say Ireland’s pending abortion legislation creates a slippery slope toward eliminating the country’s prohibition against the procedure.

A committee in Dublin is hearing testimony this week on the proposed bill. Supporters say it keeps the abortion prohibition in place while clarifying exceptions involving the life of the mother, including thoughts of suicide.

Kenny did not address the abortion controversy in his May 20 remarks at Boston College. The Irish Independent described the 26-minute speech as “rousing.” Here’s a link to the transcript.

During his weekend visit to Boston, the taoiseach also spoke at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum, which is joining U.S. and Irish remembrances of JFK’s June 1963 trip to Ireland. Kenny also laid a wreath at the site of the Boston Marathon bombing.