Arthur J. O’Neil, O.S.A.

1909 – 1984 (May 26)

Arthur Joseph O’Neil was born in Binghamton, NY, on March 18, 1909, the son of Edward O’Neil and Catherine Hayes. He attended Saint Mary’s Parochial School in Binghamton and Binghamton Central High School. In his third year of high school he transferred to Augustinian Academy, Staten Island. He was received into the novitiate on September 9, 1936, and professed simple vows on September 10, 1940. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Villanova in 1941 and pursued theological studies at Augustinian College, Washington, D.C., where he was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Corrigan at Trinity College on May 29, 1943. He also gained a Master of Arts degree in Religious Studies at The Catholic University of America in June 1944.

Father O’Neil was assigned to the Parish of Saint Augustine in Havana, Cuba, where he served as an assistant pastor. In October of 1946 he was transferred to the Parish of Saint Nicholas of Tolentine in the Bronx. In 1948 he was sent to the Colegio Santo Nino de Cebu in the Philippines, where he taught until the summer of 1950. He was then assigned once again to Cuba, to the parish of Saint Augustine in Marianao. He also taught at the University of Saint Thomas.
In 1951 he was assigned to work at various locations in the United States: Saint Nicholas of Tolentine, Jamaica, NY, from 1951 to 1954; Saint Denis, Havertown, PA, from 1954 to 1957; Saint Mary’s, Waterford, NY, in 1957, and Saint Augustine, Troy, NY, from 1958 to 1968. He was then appointed prior and pastor of Our Lady of Angels Parish, Jacksonville, FL, until the Province withdrew from the parish in 1978.

In the seminary Father O’Neil was exceptionally studious. He kept scrupulous notes and prepared well for oral examinations. An avid sports fan, he knew of all the players and their teams. He was an enthusiastic conversationalist with a wide circle of influence.In 1978 Father O’Neil retired to Saint Thomas Monastery, Villanova. In 1983 he became ill, and when his malady became rather severe, he was cared for at Saint Joseph’s Villa by the Sisters of Saint Joseph. He died on May 26, 1984. Father O’Neil is buried in the Augustinian plot at Calvary Cemetery, West Conshohocken, PA.