Diocese of Rockville Centre


The Reverend John E. Murray who had been a priest of the Diocese of Rockville Centre for 38 years died June 21, 2005 after a lengthy illness. He was 87 years old.

John Edward Murray was born on May 7, 1918 in Brooklyn to the late John and Emma Murray. He attended St. Mary Gate of Heaven Parochial School in Ozone Park and St. Augustine’s Diocesan High School in Brooklyn before heading to Manhattan College where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Math and Education in 1941. He enlisted in the United States Air Force in 1942 and eventually completed a course leading to a Master’s degree in Meteorology at New York University. Murray served as a Commanding Officer of a Weather Squadron in the Pacific Ocean area during World War II and was discharged in 1946 as a Lieutenant Colonel.

He pursued further studies at Fordham University where he eventually earned a Ph.D. in Psychology in 1955. After the war, Murray served as a Commanding Officer of a Research and Development Squadron in the Air Force Reserve.

He continued his studies for the priesthood at the Theological College of Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. and was ordained a priest on May 27, 1967 at Saint Agnes Cathedral in Rockville Centre.

Father Murray’s first assignment was to St. Philip Neri Church in Northport as an associate pastor. A year later he became Assistant the Director of Priest Personnel. In 1972, he was named the Director of the Office of Priest Personnel. In 1978, Father Murray became pastor of St. Martin of Tours Church in Bethpage.

Father Murray was transferred to Notre Dame parish in New Hyde Park in 1986 where he also served as a pastor until his retirement in 1993.

A wake for Father Murray will be held Thursday, June 23 from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Church of Notre Dame in New Hyde Park. Monsignor John McCann will preside at a Mass of Vigil on June 23, at 8:00 p.m. in the church. Father James Pereda will be the homilist.

Bishop William Murphy will be the principal celebrant at the Funeral Mass at the Church of Notre Dame on Friday, June 24 at 11:00 a.m. The homilist will be Father Robert E. Mason.

Burial will be at Evergreen Cemetery in Brooklyn.

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About The Diocese of Rockville Centre
The Diocese of Rockville Centre was formed in 1957 and covers 1,222 square miles in Nassau and Suffolk Counties. The diocese serves approximately 1.4 million Catholics (total population in both counties is approximately 3.3 million). There are 134 parishes in 115 towns. Last year over 20,000 baptisms, 18,000 confirmations, 20,000 first communions and 5,000 marriages took place in the diocese. There are 2,137 students in Catholic kindergarten, 23,825 in primary or elementary school, 12,628 in secondary school and 3,300 in higher institutions. There are 76 Catholic elementary and high schools and one Catholic college in the diocese. Catholic Health Services of Long Island consists of five hospitals, three nursing homes, two home-care agencies, two senior housing complexes, a community-based home for those with special needs and a hospice. Last year, Catholic Charities assisted more than 80,000 individuals who are poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged on Long Island. For more information, visit www.drvc.org

For more information:
Sean P. Dolan
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516-678-5800, ext. 625
Cell: 516-313-8215