July 25: Father Joseph Nolan


July 25, 2016

Father Joseph Nolan

Father Nolan, who served in the Diocese of Wichita for 17 years, from 1953 to 1970, died Monday, July 25, at his home in Newton, Massachusetts. A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Thursday, July 28, at St. Ignatius Church of Loyola in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. Fr. Nolan was 95 and was the oldest priest of the Diocese of Wichita. According to his online obituary, “Father Nolan turned aside all questions about his age by declaring that he had decided to stop counting at age 63.” Before entering the seminary, Father Nolan worked for the FBI, and served as an officer in the U.S. Navy. He studied for the priesthood at Conception Seminary, Conception, Missouri, and was ordained on May 16, 1953, by Bishop Mark K. Carroll at St. John the Evangelist Church in Winthrop, Massachusetts. According to the funeral home’s obituary, Father Nolan said he became a priest after working for the FBI, because, “It was easier to get confessions.” While in the Diocese of Wichita, Father Nolan served at St. Patrick Parish in Parsons; St. James Parish in Augusta; the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita; St. Margaret Mary Parish in Wichita; St. Mary Parish in Moline; St. Patrick Parish in Galena; and at St. Joseph Parish in Baxter Springs.