A Mass of Christian Burial for Father Francis J. Byrnes, a senior priest of the diocese, was celebrated Oct. 17 in the chapel at Immaculate Conception Center, Douglaston.
He died Oct. 10 at SS. Joachim and Anne Nursing Home, Coney Island. He was 87.
Born in Brooklyn, Father Byrnes attended Cathedral College, and Immaculate Conception Seminary, Huntington, L.I. He was ordained by Bishop Thomas E. Molloy on June 9, 1951 at St. James Pro-Cathedral, Downtown Brooklyn.
He served as an assistant at St. Pascal Baylon, St. Albans, 1951-53; St. Anne, Brentwood, L.I., 1953-55; St. Rose of Lima, Rockaway Beach, 1957-60; Holy Family, Flushing, 1960-61; and Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Jamaica, 1961-62.
From 1955 to 1957, he served as chaplain at Central Islip State Hospital, L.I.
In 1962, he went on an extended sick leave from active ministry. After spending many years in Florida, he returned to the diocese in 2007, living at Bishop Mugavero Residence, Douglaston.
Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio was the main celebrant of the funeral Mass. Msgr. Michael J. Cantley preached the homily.
“He was a very faithful priest for over 61 years,” Msgr. Cantley said. “Unfortunately, he was a man whose physical health was not very good.
“He was a quiet, solemn person. Having prepared so long for the priesthood, he’s an inspiration in the sense of a man who is able to carry his cross of illness without impacting negatively on anyone else.”
Father Byrnes is survived by his sister, Marion Showers.
Burial was in St. John’s Cemetery, Middle Village.