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Fourteen Priests Celebrate Golden Anniversaries
Chris Sheridan
Priests celebrating their golden anniversaries gather with Cardinal Dolan after Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral May 11. They are, from left: Msgr. Francis Bellew, Msgr. J. Christopher Maloney, Father Owen Lafferty, Father Raymond Rafferty, Cardinal Dolan, Msgr. Philip Franceschini, Father James Healy, Msgr. Thomas Modugno, Father George Hommel, Father Richard LaMorte and Auxiliary Bishop Gerald Walsh.

 

Fourteen priests of the archdiocese celebrated their golden anniversaries this year. Cardinal Dolan celebrated a Mass of Thanksgiving with them at St. Patrick’s Cathedral on May 11.

Cardinal Francis Spellman ordained 11 of the priests at St. Patrick’s on May 28, 1966. The other three priests were ordained at St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican in Rome: Msgr. J. Christopher Maloney and Father James Healy on Dec. 17, 1966, and Msgr. George Thompson on Dec. 18, 1965.

Msgr. Francis Bellew has resided at the parish of Our Savior/Our Lady of the Scapular/St. Stephen and the Chapel of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary in Manhattan since 2014. He had served as senior priest administrator of St. Mary’s, Wappingers Falls, since 2013, and previously was pastor since 1993. He had served as regional vicar of Dutchess County since 2007. He was principal of Our Lady of Lourdes High School, Poughkeepsie, 1986-1993. He was on the faculty and served as dean of students at Archbishop Stepinac High School, White Plains, 1970-1986. He served at St. Angela Merici, the Bronx, 1966-1970. He was named a monsignor in 1990. 

 

Msgr. Philip Franceschini has been pastor emeritus of Our Lady of Pity on Staten Island since 2013. He was senior priest administrator there, 2011-2013; pastor, 1990-2011; and parochial vicar, 1987-1990. He served on the faculty at Msgr. Farrell High School, Staten Island, 1983-1987, and Archbishop Stepinac High School, White Plains, 1969-1983. He earlier served at Our Lady of Mount Carmel-St. Benedicta, Staten Island, and Sacred Heart, Dobbs Ferry. He was named a monsignor in 1995.

 

Father James Healy has served as pastor of St. Paul the Apostle parish, Yonkers, since 2010. He was pastor of St. Vito’s, Mamaroneck, 1992-2010. He served at Archbishop Stepinac High School, White Plains, as principal, 1988-1992, and dean of studies, 1980-1988. He was administrator of Mount St. Mary High School, Newburgh, 1977-1980, and a faculty member at Cardinal Spellman High School, the Bronx, 1969-1977.  He served at St. John the Evangelist parish, White Plains, 1967-1969, and the Church of the Magdalene in Pocantico Hills, summer 1967. 

 

Father George Hommel was appointed senior priest administrator of St. John’s, West Hurley, in 2014. He had been pastor of St. John’s since 1994. He has served as regional vicar for Ulster County since 2010. He served on the faculty of Maria Regina High School, Hartsdale, 1990-1994, and Archbishop Stepinac High School, White Plains, 1971-1990. He was parochial vicar of Blessed Sacrament, New Rochelle, 1966-1971. 

 

Father Owen Lafferty retired for medical reasons in 2011. He had served as parochial vicar at Holy Innocents, Manhattan, 2004-2011, and St. Joseph’s, Greenwich Village, 1998-2004, and was chaplain at Mount Sinai Medical Center, Manhattan, 1996-1998. He was pastor of Sacred Heart, Mount Vernon, 1984-1996, and earlier served as administrator. He served at Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Elmsford, 1972-1983, and St. Anthony of Padua, the Bronx, 1966-1967. He also served on the faculty of John F. Kennedy Catholic High School, Somers, and Cardinal Spellman High School, the Bronx.  

 

Father Richard LaMorte has served as chaplain and director of campus ministry at Marist College in Poughkeepsie since 2000. He was pastor of Regina Coeli, Hyde Park, 1999-2000, and Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Poughkeepsie, 1988-1999 and 1966-1972. While pastor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, he was also appointed administrator of St. John the Baptist in Poughkeepsie, 1990-1994. He was pastor of Immaculate Conception, Amenia, 1985-1988. He taught at Marist College, 1976-1985. He was chaplain of Piux XII School, Chester, 1973-1976. He served at St. Christopher’s, Red Hook, 1972-1973.

 

Msgr. J. Christopher Maloney was pastor of St. John the Baptist, Yonkers, 2003-2015, and has served as pastor of the merged St. John the Baptist-Most Holy Trinity parish since last year. He was pastor of Notre Dame, Manhattan, 1988-2003. He also served as Newman Apostolate and Columbia University chaplain during that time. He was secretary to Cardinal O’Connor, 1985-1988. Before that, he served at Cardinal Spellman High School in the Bronx for eight years. He was a religion teacher and chairman of the religion department at Archbishop Stepinac High School, White Plains, for nine years and taught religion at John S. Burke Catholic High School, Goshen, 1967-1968. He was named a monsignor in 1990. 

 

Msgr. Thomas Modugno retired in 2013 after serving for 21 years as pastor of St. Monica’s in Manhattan. He was named regional vicar for East Manhattan in 2007. He was director for the archdiocesan Society for the Propagation of the Faith, 1980-1992. He was parochial vicar at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, 1977-1980; Blessed Sacrament, Staten Island, 1970-1977; Assumption, Staten Island, 1966-1969; and St. Joseph’s, Croton Falls, 1966. He was named a monsignor in 1990. He resides at Epiphany parish in Manhattan. 

 

Msgr. James O’Connor, who retired in 2014, had served as pastor of St. Joseph’s, Millbrook, since 1994. He also served as administrator of St. Joseph’s, Clinton Corners, 2002-2006. He was professor of dogmatic theology at St. Joseph’s Seminary, Dunwoodie, 1972-1992. He was named spiritual director of the Legion of Mary in the archdiocese and the New York Senatus in 1977. He was parochial vicar at SS. Peter and Paul, the Bronx, 1966-1969. He was named a monsignor in 1990.

Father Gerard O’Shea, who retired in 1999, served as parochial vicar at St. Augustine’s, Larchmont, 1998-1999. He was a chaplain in the U.S. Navy, 1976-1996, retiring with the rank of lieutenant commander. He was parochial vicar at Visitation, the Bronx, 1974-1976; St. John’s, West Hurley, 1969-1974; and Immaculate Conception, Woodbourne, 1966. He served at Mount Loretto on Staten Island, 1967-1968. He was a chaplain at the Lt. Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. Home in the Bronx, 1968. 

 

Father Raymond Rafferty, who retired in 2013, had served as pastor of Corpus Christi, Manhattan, 1998-2013, and St. Gregory the Great, Manhattan, 1989-1994. He also served as pastor of a parish in The Hague, Netherlands, 1994-1998. He was chaplain at New York University, 1981-1989. He was parochial vicar at St. Joseph’s, Yorkville, 1989; St. Augustine’s, New City, 1974-1981; and Blessed Sacrament, the Bronx, 1966-1974. 

 

Father Peter Scaramuzzo, who retired in 2014, was parochial vicar of St. Anthony of Padua, West Harrison, since 1994. He served as parochial vicar of SS. Peter and Paul, Mount Vernon, 1984-1994; St. Frances de Chantal, the Bronx, 1981-1984; St. Thomas of Canterbury, Cornwall-on-Hudson, 1977-1981; St. Stanislaus, Pleasant Valley, 1975-1977; and Our Lady of the Angels, the Bronx, 1966-1975.

 

Msgr. George Thompson has served as administrator of St. Patrick’s, Bedford, since 2014. He was appointed regional vicar of Northern Westchester/Putnam in 2001. He was pastor of St. Patrick’s, Bedford, 2002-2014. He was director of Priest Personnel, 1999-2002, and assistant director, 1993-1999. He was pastor of St. Denis, Yonkers, 1988-1993. He was rector of Cathedral Prep, 1986-1988, and spiritual director, 1974-1985. He was assistant director of vocations, 1968-1969, and director of vocations for the archdiocese, 1969-1974. He was named a monsignor in 1986. 

 

Father Andrew Walsh, who retired in 2011, had served since 2006 as parochial vicar at St. Margaret of Cortona, the Bronx. He was parochial vicar at St. Columba’s, Hopewell Junction, 2000-2006, and St. James the Apostle, Carmel, 1994-1997. He was administrator of St. Joachim, Beacon, 1997-2000. He served for 20 years as a chaplain in the U.S. Air Force before retiring in 1994 with the rank of major. He was on the faculty of Cardinal Spellman High School, the Bronx, 1968-1974. He earlier served at Our Lady of Loreto, Manhattan, and St. Charles Borromeo, Dover Plains. 

 

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