Beloved Latin Mass Priest Dies

Msgr. Sweeny called “the most wonderful priest that has ever lived”

The diocese of San José, and the parishioners of Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church in Santa Clara, mourn the death of Monsignor John Joseph Sweeny, 81.

Among Msgr. Sweeny’s accomplishments, in the 1960s, he helped to establish Opportunities Industrialization Center, a job-training program. Upon becoming pastor of Our Lady of Peace, Msgr. Sweeny managed to retire $500,000 of debt in the poorest church in the diocese. In the late 1970s, he instituted perpetual adoration. In the 1980s, he had constructed a 30-foot statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a shrine visible from the local highway.

Msgr. Sweeny is remembered for his quiet and humble disposition, for being a good listener, for his approachability, and for his unwavering theology. Due to his 30-year pastorate, Our Lady of Peace is called a “national model for othodox Catholics.”

Source: San Jose Mercury News, 10 Mar 2006.

Updated 11 Mar 2006/sl