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Blessed Maurice Kenraghty was a diocesan priest who was martyred in 1585 at Clonmel in County Tipperary. He was originally from Kilmallock in Limerick and studied abroad, becoming a priest and returned to Ireland where he served as a chaplain to the Earl of Desmond. He was soon captured however and in 1583 was imprisoned in Clonmel where he remained for two years in squalid conditions until his death. Fr. Maurice ministered to his fellow prisoners, hearing confessions and bolstering the faith of his fellows. Apparently a jailer was bribed by a prominent local man to allow the priest to be let out of prison for one night in order to say mass in his home. This occurred and Fr. Maurice was released secretly. However the jailer betrayed the whereabouts of this gathering to the authorities and all those who attended the mass were apprehended. Fr. Maurice hid in a pile of straw and was injured when probed by the soldiers. He later escaped, though wounded into the woods nearby. Shortly after he turned himself in to protect the life of another Catholic who was being held captive on his account. Fr. Maurice was hanged, drawn and quartered at Clonmel on 30 April 1585 AD. Before he died he exhorted the crowds to remain faithful to the Catholic faith and to pray for his soul. His feast day is 20 June.

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