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Priests and Parishes of the Diocese of Brooklyn: 1820 to 1944
Compiled by Rev. John K. Sharpe
Copyright, July 15, 1944
Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn, New York
The Diocesan Clergy:
THROUGH the careful research and zealous service of Father Sharp we are fortunately favored with the publication of this volume which gives an accurate and complete listing of the clergy who have served in Brooklyn and on Long Island from the year 1820 down to the present day.
The exact periods of their tenure of office are also noted as well as their particular spheres of duty and service as pastors, administrators and assistants.
Their notable achievements, moreover, in the erection of churches, schools and institutions of relief and mercy are duly indicated. And these agencies of religion, education and charity will ever stand as impressive and enduring monuments to their priestly vision and zeal and of their devotion to the spiritual, moral, cultural and physical welfare of the people and especially of the youth committed to their pastoral care.
From the year 1853, when the Diocese of Brooklyn was formally established, the succession of Bishops is recorded and it is interesting to note that in the course of more than ninety years there have been only three Bishops Ordinary in our midst.
Catholic readers will appraise the historical narrative here presented not simply as chronological data concerning certain individual human beings but rather as the authentic record of the representatives and ambassadors of God; equipped with His divine authority and power to act as ministers of Christ in their teaching, sacerdotal and pastoral office. "For Christ, therefore, we are ambassadors, God as it were exhorting by us." (2 Cor. v, 20.)
Prompted by the supernatural motive of charity, we shall be frequently disposed undoubtedly to say a fervent prayer that those faithful servants of God who have already departed from the scene of their meritorious earthly labors may enjoy eternal peace and happiness in heaven.
And to us who are still striving to follow worthily in their footsteps, their edifying lives and blessedly fruitful ministry will be not only an inspirational influence but a most compelling challenge.
For we well know that they now address to each and every one of us, through the medium of the record of their priestly careers, the advice of Saint Paul to Timothy and Titus: "Be thou an example of the faithful in word, in conversation, in charity, in faith, in chastity. . . . In all things show thyself an example of good works in doctrine, in integrity, in gravity." (I Tim. iv, 12; Titus ii, 7.)
God grant that we may endeavor to meet these priestly requirements conscientiously; and we may reasonably hope to do so by fulfilling the Pauline instruction: "Therefore take unto you the armor of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and to stand in all things perfect. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of justice, and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; in all things taking the shield of faith, wherewith you may be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the most wicked one. And take unto you the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God." (Eph. vi, 13 to 17.)
Thomas E. Molloy,
Bishop of Brooklyn.
Paul planted and Apollo watered, but God gave the increase.
Under the direction of His Excellency The Most Reverend Thomas E. Molloy, S.T.D., third Bishop of Brooklyn, studies were begun in 1937 in preparation for writing a narrative history of Catholicism on Long Island. A draft of such a narrative was completed in 1942 and it is now undergoing final revision, with a view, it is hoped, of early publication.
This present volume is a by-product of those studies. It is a volume of 100,000 facts. They were gathered, assorted and checked by many persons. Although the facts are marshaled here without verbs, adjectives or adverbs, they also tell, albeit in summary form, something of the rise and growth of the Catholic Church on Long Island from 1820 to 1944.
This story was lived by multitudes of devout persons from all the nations of the earth, by thousands of fervent religious and by apostolic priests and bishops. The majority of them have preceded us with the sign of faith and sleep the sleep of peace. But before they departed they left to the living the legacy which is recorded on the following pages. And with this legacy they gave also the same exhortation which they in their day had followed: "Contend earnestly for the faith once for all delivered to the saints."
THE REVEREND CLERGY WHO HAVE LABORED ON LONG ISLAND FROM 1820 TO 1944
The following pages attempt to list the Reverend Clergy who are known to have labored within the present limits of the Diocese of Brooklyn from the beginning of St. James, the first parish, about 1820, to the present time, 1944. They also give in summary form something of the life and labors of each priest cited.
This clergy list is of two parts. The first includes the names of those priests who served as members of the Diocesan or Pastoral Clergy. The second part is composed of lists of the members of the several Religious Congregations who have served in Brooklyn Diocese.
The first part entitled Diocesan Clergy includes all priests who fall into any of the following six groups:
(1) Those ordained for the Diocese of Brooklyn from 1853 (when it was erected out of the Archdiocese of New York) until 1944.
[2) Those ordained for the Diocese of New York (erected out of the Diocese of Baltimore 1808, made an Archdiocese 1850) and who were assigned by the Ordinaries of New York to parishes and religious institutions on Long Island between 1820 and 1854.
(3) Those ordained for a diocese other than New York and who, under the direction of the Bishops of New York, labored on Long Island from 1820 to 1854.
(4) Externs of Religious Communities who labored on Long Island under assignment of the Bishops of New York or of Brooklyn from 1820 to 1868. The first permanent house of a religious order of priests was established in the Diocese of Brooklyn in 1868. Religious who labored on Long Island before that date are listed among the diocesan priests.
(5) Externs incardinated into Brooklyn Diocese. Priests originally ordained for a diocese other than Brooklyn or for a religious community and who, having severed their former affiliation, were made canonical members of the diocesan clergy of Brooklyn.
(6) Externs with quasi-affiliation with the Diocese of Brooklyn. These are priests who, while retaining their canonical affiliation with a diocese other than Brooklyn, have labored a sufficiently long time in Brooklyn with diocesan priests to become quasi-members of the diocesan clergy of Brooklyn. Residence for a period of four or more consecutive months has been arbitrarily selected as this sufficiently long time. However a few of the externs listed for the early years may have served here less than that period of time; and a few who served four months or longer may have been omitted inadvertently.
Visiting bishops who also may have officiated in their episcopal capacity are not here listed, nor are the very few priests of the nonLatin rites within the diocese. Excepting some half dozen priests of a century or so ago, the names of priests known to have administered the sacraments only on a passing visit are also omitted.
This general list of the diocesan clergy is followed by a supplementary list of those extern priests and their assignments whose biographies are almost entirely unknown.
The symbols used on the diocesan clergy list need some explanation. Papal Chamberlains with the title Very Reverend Monsignor are designated with an asterisk *. Domestic Prelates with the title Right Reverend Monsignor are marked **.
Generally, the first place name indicates the birthplace. Of the five counties of New York City, Manhattan is designated as NYC, the Bronx as Bronx, and Staten Island as Richmond. Of Long Island's four counties, Brooklyn and Queens are parts of New York City. Brooklyn is here designated as Bklyn, while the villages and cities of the three other Long Island Counties (Queens, Nassau and Suffolk) are specified. Native places elsewhere in New York State are designated NYS. Other States of the Union receive their commonly accepted abbreviations. Dashes not enclosed by parentheses indicate that information is lacking on birthplace and birth date.
The second place name, that of the seminary of theology attended, is given generally in symbol. When more than one such seminary was attended, the fact is noted. To avoid confusion with other place names and dates, the seminary and the ordination date are included in the one parenthesis. This inclusion does not necessarily imply that priestly ordination took place at that seminary. When information is lacking on either the seminary or the date of ordination or on both, the fact is represented by a dash or dashes within the parenthesis, e.g., (4-4-04), (ACC), (- -). The symbols for the seminaries and their meanings are:
ACC-Almo Collegio Capranica, Rome
ACL-American College, Louvain
AH-All Hallows, Ireland
BAA-St. Bernard Abbey, Alabama
C-Canisianum, Innsbruck, Austria
CMD-SS. Cyril and Methodius, Detroit
CNI-College of Noble Irish, Salamanca, Spain
GS-.NI-Grand Seminaire, Montreal
ICH-Immaculate Conception, Huntington, L. 1.
ICP-Irish College, Paris
ICR-Irish College, Rome
KSL-Kenrick Seminary, St. Louis
LS-Local Seminary, in diocese of nativity or of ordination
LSR-Leonine Seminary, Rome
MAY-St. Patrick, Maynooth, Ireland
MFM-Maryknoll Foreign Mission Seminary, Maryknoll, N. Y.
MH-Mill Hill, England
MSM-Mt. St. Mary, Emmitsburg, Md.
MSMO-Mt. St. Mary, Cincinnati, 0.
NAC-North American College, Rome
OLA-Our Lady of Angels, Niagara, N. Y.
PCJ-Pontificai College Josephinum, Columbus, 0.
PRO-Propaganda College, Rome
PSR-Pontifical Scots College, Rome
SBA-St. Bonaventure, Alleghany, Penn.
SBR-St. Bernard, Rochester, N. Y.
SCB-St. Charles Borromeo Seminary, Overbrook, Penn.
SCC-St. Charles Seminary, Carthagena, 0.
SFL-St. Francis, Loretto, Penn.
SJB-St. John, Brooklyn, N. Y.
SJD-St. Joseph, Dunwoodie, N. Y.
SJF-St. John, Fordham, N. Y.
SJL-St. John Lateran, Rome
SJM-St. John, Brighton, Mass.
SJT-St. Joseph, Troy, N. Y.
SJW-St. John, Waterford, Ireland
SMB-St. Mary, Baltimore, Md.
SMN-St. Mary, Norwalk, Conn.
SAIR-St. Mary, Roland Park, Baltimore, Md.
SPC-St. Patrick, Carlow, Ireland
SPM-St. Paul, Minnesota
SPT-St. Patrick, Thurles, Ireland
SSP-St. Sulpice, Paris
SSW-Sulpician Seminary, Washington, D. C.
STD-St. Thomas, Denver, Col.
VPA-Augustinian Monastery, Villanova, Penn.
VPB-St. Vincent Archabbey, Latrobe and Beatty, Penn.
VPL-St. Vincent de Paul, Lafargeville, N. Y.
Known dates of birth, ordination and death are listed in that respective order. For all dates given, numerals are used for month, day and year, in that, the American, rather than the continental order. The year of the earliest known date is written in four digits. Subsequent dates are written in the last two digits of their century.
Assignments in Queens, Nassau and Suffolk Counties are given with their addresses. Assignments in the parishes of Kings County omit the address. A few assignments are referred to by symbol: ILR -- ill, leave of absence and resignation; EDPOS extra diocesan postordination study; USA-Chaplain, U. S. Army; USN-Chaplain, U. S. Navy. With but few exceptions the only diocesan assignments listed in this volume, other than those implied in the places of residence given, are those appearing on pages 305 and 306 of the 1943 Catholic Directory.
The dates for any assignment are generally not inclusive of Me twelve months in any specified year. Thus a certain assignment may be indicated for 25-27, i.e., 1925-1927, whereas it ran actually from December, 1925, to January, 1927, inclusive. The assignment date may not, therefore, give a wholly true impression. But it is accurate enough for our purpose.
The first assignment generally begins with the date of ordination and ends with the date immediately following the place of the assignment. Second and later assignments are printed in units, each unit consisting of the parish or institution followed by a dash and by the last two digits of the year. Thus, the length of each assignment extends from the preceding date to the next given date.
The second part of the Clergy List is composed of lists of the members of the Religious Congregations and Orders who have served in the Diocese of Brooklyn since 1868. The names of these religious are listed under the separate catalogues of their order or congregation. No record is made in these lists of any assignments outside their own religious foundation in this diocese. Thus all temporary or emergency assignments of these religious in the parishes of the diocesan clergy are not recorded. Even the assignments of some religious as chaplains in the diocesan or religious institutions within the diocese are not listed. No attempt has been made to list the priests of religious orders who have come from outside the diocese to give brief temporary help to diocesan clergy.
After the separate listings of the religious congregations will be found a file called Unclassified Religious. These are religious who have no religious house of their own within the diocese, but who, in the period 1868 to 1944, have assisted the diocesan clergy of Brooklyn on assignments of considerable duration within the Diocese of Brooklyn.
The Addenda, at the end of the volume, lists the names of diocesan priests ordained in 1944, as well as the names of priests of religious communities who have had Brooklyn assignments only since 1942.
The names of 2,023 priests may be found on the above files of the diocesan clergy and the names of 1,287 priests are listed on the files of the religious congregations. Of this total of 3,310 priests about 1,200 diocesan and religious priests serve the diocese today. Many if not most of the other priests listed have gone to their reward and their memory has grown faint. The temporary tribute of the printed word here given, meagre though that tribute is, will be immeasurably enriched by the reader's prayers for the repose of their souls.
The Diocesan Clergy: