William P. Kelly, O.S.A.

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1891 – 1971 (February 24)

William Patrick Kelly, son of Richard Kelly and Bridget Hill, was born October 18, 1891 in Albany, New York. He began his studies for the Order in 1905 at Saint Rita’s Hall, Villanova, Pa., and in September, 1908, was accepted into the novitiate there. He made his profession of simple vows on September 18,  1909, and solemn vows on September 18, 1912. He received his Masters degree from Villanova in 1913 and was ordained to the priesthood on May 22, 1915 at the Philadelphia Cathedral by Archbishop Edmond Prendergast.

Father Kelly’s first assignment, in 1915, was to Saint Augustine’s Church, Troy, NY, as an assistant pastor. Three years later he joined the faculty of Saint Rita High School, Chicago, IL, where he taught for eight years. In June, 1926, he was appointed sub-prior at Saint Augustine’s High School, San Diego, CA. He later served as rector of the school and  prior of the community until 1938, when he returned to Saint Augustine Parish, Troy. Father “Pete”, as he was known to fellow Augustinians, was assigned to Saint Mary’s Church in Lawrence, Mass. in 1938 and served there for the next 33 years, establishing a wide reputation as confessor and spiritual director. In 1952 he became director and treasurer of the area Catholic Charities Center. He also served as spiritual advisor to the Catholic Daughters of America, Court of Saint Joan of Arc, and other societies.

Father Kelly died on February 24, 1971 at Bon Secours Hospital, and is buried in the Augustinian section of Saint Mary’s Cemetery, Lawrence, MA.