Fr. Bernard Donnelly (1933 - )
(Principal Jan 1985 – Oct 1993)
Fr. Donnelly first joined St Xavier’s in January 1958 and like a number of his contemporaries he came to the school straight from Australia, spending three years in the classroom and as dormitory prefect. After that he lived in Ranchi for two years, during which time he studied Hindi and took his degree from St Xavier’s College. In the years between this and his taking up the post of Principal in January 1985 Fr. Donnelly was engaged in a number of Jesuit undertakings including a year with Fr. Moore in Bokaro Steel City as Manager and teacher, and six years (1974 – 1980) as Regional Superior of the Hazaribag Jesuits.
Fr Donnelly brought St Xavier’s into the computer age. He installed a computer in the office, probably the first school in the town to have one. Then to provide for computer teaching that would be available to students of St Xavier’s and also St Robert’s, which was still in the campus, he did some building alterations and opened the Fr John Moore Computer Centre.
Fr Donnelly was interested in reviving contacts with former students of St Xavier’s. HOXA underwent a rebirth under the leadership of Mr Bikram Sen and a meeting was held in Jamshedpur to plan for the future. One of the results of this was that a group of HOXAN doctors, including Dr Sandeep Mukherjee and Dr Lalit Jain formed a medical team and for a time operated a clinic in Sultana and other out of town locations. Later the focus of this volunteer service shifted to Bisheshwar Hospital, with the cooperation of some of the old boys in the form of a psychiatric clinic served by the doctors of the Central Institute of Psychiatry, Ranchi. The CIP clinic now functions from the school campus, the firstWednesday of each month.
During his tenure as Principal Fr Donnelly’s easy friendliness and unassuming relationships with staff and boys, as well as old boys, made for a happy school family.