Oonagh Shanley-Toffolo: her father would see her only once again after she left home to go to the Convent of the Little Sisters of the Poor. Photograph: Glenn copus/Evening Standard

Oonagh Shanley-Toffolo’s life reads like a high-velocity 86-year-long fairytale. She grew up on a Leitrim farm, worked as a missionary nun in the slum(...)

The certificate granting the ‘Freedom of the City of Dublin’ to the artist Sir John Lavery in 1935 has turned up after 80 years and is to be sold at auction later this month. Photograph: Fine Art & Collectibles Auctioneers & Valuers

The certificate granting the Freedom of the City of Dublin to the artist Sir John Lavery in 1935 has turned up after 80 years and is to be sold at auc(...)

Nuns hold vigils to condemn the gang-rape of an elderly nun in Ranaghat, India, on March 14th, allegedly by Hindu extremists. Photograph: Rajat Gupta/EPA

Ten months after prime minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) assumed power, many members of India’s minority Christi(...)

Ireland’s win  in Italy puts the achievements of Nelson Mandela, Aung San Suu Kyi, Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King in the ha’penny place.  Photograph: Ryan ByrneINPHO

Are you old enough to remember the conveyor belt on the Generation Game? No? Well, a bunch of fabulous prizes whizzed by under the contestants’ noses (...)

Anita Mukherjee, who has died aged 57, was a native of Kolkata in India who became very much a part of life in her adopted home of Enniskillen, where (...)

Pope Francis waves this morning as he arrives in Tirana for his one-day pastoral visit to Albania. Photograph: Alessandro Bianchi/Reuters

Pope Francis has explained in Tirana why he chose Albania for the first European visit of his pontificate. In a homily in Tirana’s central Mother Tere(...)

A woman holds a T-shirts bearing an image of Pope Francis and the word ‘Welcome’ a shop in Shkoder in Albania. Photograph: EPA/STR

Against the background of reported threats from Islamic fundamentalists, Pope Francis tomorrow makes a highly signficant day trip when he travels t(...)

Nevin Spence down on the farm: tragic death in slurry tank accident. Photo: John Dickson

He was all that we want our sporting heroes to be. Nevin Spence was a talented centre with the Ulster rugby team. At just 22 years of age he was on(...)

Christina Noble on the set of Noble with director Stephen Bradley, producer Melanie Gore-Grimes and a huge cast of “babbies”

‘I’m a raucous kind of a character,” says Christina Noble. No kidding. We’re two hours into an interview at her Lucan home and I’ve come down w(...)

SDLP members Seamus Mallon,  Joe Hendron, Eddie McGrady and  John Hume, the party leader, leaving the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin. Photograph: Jack McManus / The Irish Times

DUP leader and First Minister Peter Robinson and former SDLP leader John Hume feature in previously confidential files from 1985 released today by th(...)