Eamon Casey's funeral to be held on Thursday

The former bishop died yesterday following a lengthy illness

Eamon Casey's funeral to be held on Thursday

Picture by: PA/PA Archive/PA Images

Eamon Casey's funeral is to be held on Thursday.

The former Catholic Bishop of Galway died at a nursing home in County Clare yesterday aged 89 following a lengthy illness.

His remains will be taken to the Cathedral of Our Lady Assumed into Heaven and Saint Nicholas in Galway at 7pm tomorrow evening.

Funeral mass will take place at 2pm on Thursday afternoon, followed by internment in the Cathedral crypt.

Casey, who was ordained to the priesthood in 1951, was seen as a progressive and influential member of the church,

He resigned in 1992 after reports surfaced of his sexual relationship with American woman Annie Murphy.

Together they fathered a son, Peter, who was born in 1974 in Dublin.

Yesterday, President Higgins led tributes to the former bishop. In a statement, he said: "I have heard with sadness of the passing of Eamon Casey, former Bishop of Galway and Kerry. There will be many who will remember his work on homelessness and housing with the Irish emigrant community in Britain.

"Other aspects of his life were the source of pain to others, for which Bishop Casey has apologised and expressed his deep regret, and he himself had the experience of pain visited on him in later life," he added. 

Bishop Casey was also praised as the 'driving force' behind the charity Trócaire, having served as its chairman after the charity was established in 1973.

The charity's chairman Bishop William Crean said: “Bishop Casey spoke out courageously in defence of persecuted communities overseas and was willing to place himself in danger in order to do so."