March 12: Father Donal O'Hare

March 12, 2017

Father O'Hare was born on Sep. 29, 1923, in Ireland. He studied at All Hallows Seminary in Dublin and was ordained there on June 20, 1954. He served as a priest of the diocese for 62 years. He served as a chaplain in Parsons after arriving in the Diocese of Wichita in November of 1954. Five years later, in 1959, he was named an associate at Saint Patrick Parish in Wichita. He also taught at St. Mary's Cathedral High School while in Wichita. Father O'Hare was named pastor of St. Ambrose in Erie and of St. Joseph in South Mound in 1965. He was moved to Holy Name in Coffeyville in 1969 where he was pastor until his return as pastor of St. Patrick, Wichita, in 1984. He was named pastor of St. Anthony/St. Rose in Wellington in 1995 and retired the next year. The Most Rev. James Conley, bishop of the Diocese of Lincoln, Nebraska, and a close friend of Father O'Hare, was the celebrant and homilist for the Mass. Father O’Hare was Bishop Conley’s first mentor after Father Conley was ordained in 1985 and was assigned to St. Patrick Parish in Wichita. In his homily Bishop Conley noted Fr. O’Hare’s goodness, kindness, and example of God’s mercy. He said that Father O’Hare formed the newly ordained Father Conley not so much by what he said but through his actions and deeds.