Casey, Rev Michael
REV. MICHAEL J. CASEY
July 18, 1911
- Date of Birth: 1851
- Place of Birth in Ireland: Annachullion Glebe
- County: Monaghan (Following the 1920 Act of Partition, this townland was assigned to Co Fermanagh)
- Education: All Hallows, Dublin
- Date of Ordination: 24 June 1875
- Place of Ordination: All Hallows Seminary, Dublin
- Ordained by: Bishop James McDevitt of Raphoe, Ireland for the Diocese of Leavenworth, KS
- Pastor – St Paul’s, Olathe, with Missions of Church of the Assumption, Edgerton and St Columbkille, Gardner 1875-1885.
During this pastorate, in 1877, the Diocese of Leavenworth was established.
- Pastor – St Aloysius Church, Wichita 1885-1889.
During this pastorate, in 1887, the Diocese of Wichita was established. After Bishop-elect James O’Reilly died on 26 July 1887, Father Casey was appointed administrator of the Wichita Diocese for almost two years until the arrival of Bishop John Hennessy.
- Administrator of Wichita Diocese – 26 July 1887 to 30 November 1888
During this time period, he built a new St Aloysius Church (later known as St Joseph Parish) erected All Hallows Academy (later known as Mt. Carmel Academy) and had begun building St John’s Institute (now Newman University)
- Pastor – St Mary’s, Newton 1889-1893
- Pastor – St. Andrew’s, Abilene 1893-1894
- Pastor – St Bridget’s, Scammonville 1894-1896
- Pastor – St Anthony’s, Weir City 1896-1902
- Pastor – St Rose of Lima, Council Grove 1903-1908
- Pastor – St Patrick’s, Fulton 1908-1911
While at St Anthony’s at Weir, Father Casey wrote a book titled “The Church – What it is not and what it is.” The book was around 200 pages and sold for fifty cents. Profits from the book sale went to liquidate the debt of St. Anthony’s Church in Weir. Father Casey promoted the book to Catholics as well as non-Catholics and it covered various topics such as: the evil effects of indifferentism, false principles and prejudice; what are the marks and signs of the true Church; how does the Catholic Church show her holiness; and more.
In 1901, Father Casey celebrated his 25 years of service in the priesthood with Mass and a banquet. The Silver Jubilee was the first-of-a-kind event ever celebrated in Kansas and was covered in the Weir Journal. The article stated that Father Casey sailed to the United States the same year in which he was ordained. While located in Olathe, he began the first Catholic publication in Kansas, which was later merged into the St Louis Catholic paper. The profits were used to fund the interests of the church.
While at Fulton, Fr Casey became ill and was admitted to St Margaret’s Hospital in Kansas City. He was released 1 June 1911 and retired to Denver. He died six weeks later at the age of sixty.
- Date of Death: 19 July 1911
- Place of Death: St Joseph’s Hospital, Denver, CO
- Age of Death: 60
- Funeral Celebrant: Bishop John Ward, Leavenworth
- Funeral Sermon: Bishop John Hennessy, Wichita
- Burial: Mt Calvary Cemetery, Leavenworth, KS
The will of Father Casey left amounts of money ranging from $100 to $4,000 to several Catholic institutions: Little Sisters of the Poor, Wichita; St John’s College, Wichita; Mercy Hospital, Fort Scott; St Francis Hospital, Wichita; Nazareth Home, Londonderry, Ireland and Catholic Extension, Chicago. The amount of property owned by Father Casey was not known but the will mentioned the need to sell farms in Butler and Barber Counties before the will could be settled. He also gave a gift of $1,000 to All Hallows College, his alma mater, for the education of a priest for the Leavenworth Kansas diocese. He specifically requested that the priest be chosen from students who were residents of County Monaghan, his home county in Ireland.