Obituaries, Week of Feb. 5, 2022

Msgr. Bednartz ‘Loved People of God’

Msgr. August C. Bednartz, a retired priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn, died Jan. 23. He was born on Sept. 27, 1926, in New York and was ordained to the priesthood on June 7, 1952.

Msgr. August C. Bednartz

Msgr. Bednartz served the Diocese of Brooklyn as pastor of the parish of Saint Raphael (Long Island City). He also served as parochial vicar for the parishes of Saint Aloysius (Brooklyn), Saint Margaret (Middle Village), and Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal (Ridgewood).

Msgr. Bednartz served as the director of the Diocesan Priests Day Recollection, as Advocate of the Brooklyn Diocesan Tribunal, and was also a member of the Priests Senate. He received the honor of Chaplain of His Holiness in 1989.

“He was a fine, holy priest who loved the Church and the people of God,” said Deacon Matt Oellinger, who befriended Msgr. Bednartz when the prelate spent his later years at the Bishop Mugavero Residence for Retired Priests.

“I’ve been getting calls from his former parishioners, from St. Margaret, St. Raphael, telling me what a good, prayerful, generous priest Msgr. Bednartz was, and how he helped them out in tough times,” said Deacon Oellinger, the diocese’s coordinator of Senior Priests Services. “He was just a good man, and a good friend.”

A funeral Mass for Msgr. Bednartz was held Jan. 27 at American Martyrs Church, Bayside, followed by interment at St. John Cemetery, Middle Village, New York.

Father James J. Dinneen, SJ, passed away on Oct. 23, 2021. Born in Brooklyn on October 22, 1930, and raised there, Father Dinneen was proud of his Brooklyn roots. As a high school student he got to know the Jesuits at Xavier High School, and on August 14, 1948, shortly after his graduation from Xavier, he joined the Society of Jesus at St. Andrew-on-Hudson in Poughkeepsie, New York.

Father James J. Dinneen
Father James J. Dinneen, SJ

Father Dinneen took his first vows on August 15, 1950, at St. Andrew’s.

He was ordained in the Fordham University Church by Francis Cardinal Spellman on June 21, 1962. In 1964, he returned to his alma mater, Xavier High School, to teach English and religion and serve as student counselor for the next 10 years.

In 1974, Father Dinneen studied theology and spirituality at Fordham University and then returned to Xavier in 1976.

In 1982, Father Dinneen was sent to St. Ignatius Retreat House in Manhasset, New York, where, for the next 17 years, he gave the Spiritual Exercises and did priestly ministry in local parishes.

In 2014, because of declining health, he moved to Murray-Weigel Hall to pray for the Church and the Society of Jesus. He was infected with the COVID-19 virus and died the day after his 91st birthday.

Sister Frances Ryan, S.C., a Sister of Charity-Halifax for 70 years, died on Jan. 13, at age 92. She is survived by cherished nieces and nephews, their families, and her sisters in community, especially her dearest friend and caregiver for many years, Sister Maria LaBolita.

Sister Frances Ryan, S.C.

Sister Frances was missioned to Our Lady of the Cenacle School, Richmond Hill, from 1952-60 as a Grades 2 and 3 teacher.

She was also missioned in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Washington State.

Sister Frances Ryan retired and lived in a small community in Newton, Mass. for many years until her death.

A funeral Mass was held on Jan. 20, at Our Lady Help of Christians Church, Newton, Mass. Interment was at Saint Mary’s Cemetery, Needham, Mass.

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