A long-serving former teacher at St Bede's College celebrates his 100th birthday today.
Friends and family will join Father George Duggan at the St Joseph's Home of Compassion in Upper Hutt, where he will receive a blessing from Pope Benedict.
The Marist priest, also known as Chalky, was a lecturer, dedicated scholar of theology and regular in the letters pages of The Listener.
Duggan was ordained in 1936 in Rome on the feast of St Thomas Aquinas, whose work he studied. A keen sportsman, he played in both the first XI and first XV at St Bede's College, and would use the gestures of cricket umpires to spice up lectures.
Father Noel Delaney, a friend and former student of Duggan, said the name "Chalky" came about because, in his youth, there was a famous boxer named Chalky Duggan "so they gave him the name at the same time".
He described Duggan as a philosopher with strong common sense who, as a student, would be the voice for student concerns. He once wrote a book "analysing and questioning" Charles Darwin.
- © Fairfax NZ News
Do you travel by bus in Christchurch?Related story: More bus shelters needed in Christchurch