February 1: Father Dennis Healy


February 1, 1920

Father Dennis Healy

Father Healy was born at Cloghroe, County Cork, Ireland and did his early studies at Mt. Melleray Abbey. Upon completing his seminary studies at St. Patrick’s College, Carlow, Ireland, he was ordained for the Diocese of Wichita on June 17, 1905. As pastor he was assigned to Moline and then to Seward. After spending time in Colorado to recuperate from an illness, he returned in 1914 and was made pastor of St. Joseph Parish, Wichita, where he built the present church. Msgr. Moeder writes of Fr. Healy at the time of the blessing of the church on July 16, 1916, “This day served as a climax to the energetic management of Father D. J. Healy, pastor of St. Joseph’s, though of failing health, he worked on ceaselessly.” (History of the Diocese of Wichita, p. 97) The lingering effects of the Spanish influenza forced his retirement on December 23, 1919 and he died on February 1, 1920 after spending six weeks in St. Francis Hospital. “He was a quiet, unassuming man, ever of a cheerful and genial disposition, and a kind and loving nature which won him universal esteem.” (The Catholic Advance, Feb. 7, 1920) Msgr. Schmiehausen celebrated his funeral Mass at St. Joseph Parish and Bishop Hennessy performed the absolution.