Sheridan, Terence James
SHERIDAN, TERENCE JAMES
Jesuit writer and editor, b. Dublin, Ireland, Sept. 16, 1908; d. Manila, Philippines, Dec. 11, 1970. Educated at Belvedere College, Dublin, Sheridan entered the Jesuit novitiate in 1927. During juniorate and philosophy studies, he began his lifetime career as a writer of plays and topical sketches. Assigned to Hong Kong in 1934, he studied Cantonese at Shiuhing, got his first taste for the Cantonese opera, and wrote for The Rock, a Hong Kong literary periodical. From 1935–37, he was on the teaching staff of Wah Yan College, Hong Kong. After studying theology in Dublin, he was ordained to the priesthood in 1940 and stayed to give missions and retreats in Ireland till he returned to Wah Yan in 1946.
He became involved almost immediately in the cultural life of post-war Hong Kong. He began working on his annual series of Cantonese operas in English, witty translation-adaptations of the well-known themes of Cantonese opera. His productions were always alive, exciting, and very colorful; the most famous was A Lizard Is No Dragon. In 1951 he launched both a Chinese magazine for young people and Outlook, a literary and current affairs magazine. A leading member and producer for the Hong Kong Stage Club, he wrote a number of religious plays, film scripts, and scenarios, as well as pageants for the Marian Year and about the history of Hong Kong and Macao.
In the early 1960s, Sheridan was assigned to Singapore to edit the Malaysian Catholic News, which became a lively paper in his hands, and he was quickly involved in radio, drama, and TV in the city. In 1966, after difficulties about his editorship of the newspaper, he resigned from the post and was sent to Manila to work toward an Overseas Program in Radio Veritas. After some months he left that job and joined the staff of the East Asian Pastoral Institute. He lectured in the Philippines and in Chicago (Loyola Institute of Pastoral Studies) on the study, evaluation, and use of film. He was working on the official film record of Pope Paul's visit to Manila when he died suddenly of cardiac failure.
Bibliography: t. j. sheridan, Letters to Bart (London 1938); Seven Chinese Stories (London 1959); Four Short Plays (London 1960). j. hofinger and t. j. sheridan, eds., The Medellín Papers (Manila 1969).