Benignus Harkins, OFM
1908 – 1967
Fr. Benignus Harkins, OFM, was born Oct. 3, 1908 in Burlington, N.J. He entered St. Joseph’s Seraphic Seminary in Callicoon, N.Y., as a high school student and was received into the novitiate at St. Bonaventure Friary, Paterson, N.J., in 1929. Fr. Benignus professed solemn vows in 1933 and was ordained in 1936.
His pastoral ministry began at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in New York City. Fr. Benignus served at St. Joseph Parish in Winsted, Conn., and then from 1944 to 1961, served at St. Elizabeth’s Parish in Wyckoff, N.J., where he built the church, school and convent. At the time of his death, he was vicar of St. Raphael’s Friary in Lafayette, N.J.
He died on Jan. 10, 1967 while visiting friars in Kingston, Jamaica. Fr. Beningus was 58 years old, a professed friar for 36 years and a priest for 30 years.