Farewell, Father Noble
BISHOP William Morris was one of 40 priests who con-celebrated the Funeral Mass at St Mary’s Catholic Church yesterday for Fr Kevin Noble.
A large marquee was set up outside for the overflowing crowd of 1200 who paid their respects to Fr Noble who was parish priest of St Mary’s, Warwick, for the past two years, parish priest of Holy Cross, Killarney, since 1997 and priest director of Allora parish until his death on Friday.
Bishop Morris said it was on the family farm at Freestone that Fr Noble first heard about the word of God.
“He was a man of the earth, a man of the soil, a man of creation, a man for all seasons,” Bishop Morris said.
“We are able to reflect on the words of St Paul to the Romans – the life and death of each of us had an influence on others.
“As people prayed for a miracle for Kevin, they reflected on the importance of life and death and discerned what was important.
“Kevin became a face of Jesus to many.
“As we gather to remember him as a brother, pastor and friend, we show our love and gratitude for a life well lived. Can we comfort each other at this time.”
Cose friend Fr Michael Cooney spoke of Fr Noble’s kindness and true concern for people in yesterday’s eulogy.
“Kev would sum up a situation in a few words with remarkable accuracy. A quiet person by nature, he could nevertheless be extremely sharp in his observations of people and personal situations,” Fr Cooney said.
The humorous side of Fr Noble, even during the final month when his medical conditions deteriorated, was highlighted.
Fr Cooney recalled being a student at St Joseph’s Christian Brothers College when a Year 11 student from Freestone, Kev Noble, drove his sisters to school in a Holden car.
“It was just fascinating for us local CBC boys to see a student drive to school,” Fr Cooney said.
“Our friendship from school continued when Kev worked in the Commonwealth Bank for two years before going to Banyo Seminary.”
The Funeral Mass started with Fr Noble’s nephew Peter Comerford lighting the candle.
The pall (baptismal symbol) was placed on the coffin by his sister Lynette Noble and Mary Goyne, the stole and chalice by Fathers Jim Smith and Adrian Farrelly, book of the hours by Assumption College student Matthew Montgomery and rosary beads by Margaret Brosnan.
Fr Noble’s seminary classmate Bishop James Foley from Cairns was also at the funeral.
Fr Noble’s sister Margaret Comerford introduced family and parish representatives to place symbols on a small table.
A coffee mug was placed by Bernadette Ryan in recognition of Fr Noble’s love for a cuppa and a chat, a telephone by Joyce Gibson, friendship circle by Valerie Rose and playing cards by Aileen Watson.
Daph Pullen placed a copy of a newspaper, Monday’s Daily News which highlighted Fr Noble’s life, and his niece Anne Comerford placed a small bucket of soil from the Noble family farm at Freestone on the table.
Fr Noble’s sister Mary Noble and nephew Matthew Comerford were the readers and nieces Anne Comerford and Catherine Daniels lead the general intercessions.
The front seats on one side of the church were reserved for ministers, pastors and representatives of other churches in the area and Southern Downs Mayor Ron Bellingham.
Prayer vigil packed
ST MARY’S Catholic Church was packed for the prayer vigil on Wednesday night for the late Fr Kevin Noble.
Fr Noble’s work for the people of the Allora, Warwick and Killarney parishes was highlighted by parish representatives, John Briffa, Ian Kelly and Pat Mapes.
His sister Margaret Comerford read the words of remembrance from his family and Josephine Rice, Bishop Morris’ secretary from the Toowoomba diocese, spoke of the great support by Fr Noble for the bishop and the diocese down the years.
Former St Mary’s School, Warwick, principal and long-time friend Roly Poulton spoke of a close friend and faithful priest.
Bishop Morris presided over the prayer vigil and Fr John Maher spoke of behalf of the priests of the diocese in the loss of a close friend and brother priest.
The tributes on Wednesday night were interspersed with hymns and prayers for Fr Noble and his family.
A life well lived
Education: Upper Freestone State School; Nudgee College, Brisbane; Christian Brothers College, Warwick.
Seminary: Pius XIII Seminary 1967-1973.
Ordination: August 8, 1973, by Bishop William Brennan. Date is now feast day for Blessed Mary McKillop.
Our Lady of Lourdes, Toowoomba 1974-1975
St Theresa’s, Toowoomba 1976-1978
St Mary’s, Warwick 1978 – 1982
St Mary’s, Goondiwindi 1982 – 1984
Immaculate Conception Church, Surat 1985-1987
Sacred Heart Church, Texas 1987 – 1997
Holy Cross, Killarney 1997 – 2010
St Mary’s, Warwick, and St Patrick’s, Allora, 2008 – 2010
Diocesan Council of Priests and Diocesan Personnel Board