Mark Kennedy, OFM
1895 – 1961
Fr. Mark Kennedy, OFM, was born on Nov. 24, 1895 in Jersey City, N.J. After graduating from St. Joseph Seraphic Seminary, Callicoon, N.Y., he entered the novitiate at St. Bonaventure Friary in Paterson, N.J. in 1915. He professed temporary vows one year later and made his solemn profession in 1919. Fr. Mark was ordained a priest in 1922.
The greater park of Fr. Mark’s life was spent in education, a ministry he devoted himself to for over 30 years. He taught in both the high school and college departments at St. Bonaventure University, Allegany, N.Y., and served as prefect, dean and vice president.
From 1925 to 1929, Fr. Mark studied at the Antonianum in Rome, and at the Franciscan Biblical Institute in Jerusalem. He also served as secretary to Archbishop Paschal Robinson, OFM. When Holy Name College opened in 1930, Fr. Mark was assigned there as a professor of scripture for theology students. In 1943, he became president of Siena College, Loudonville, N.Y., and when he finished his term in 1952, he returned to teach at Holy Name College.
Research and scholarly endeavors occupied him in the 1930s and 40s. He took great pride in his revision of the text of St. Matthew’s Gospel for the Confraternity Edition of the Bible. A 1942 commentary on the New Testament contained his commentary on St. Matthew.
From 1953 to 1957, Fr. Mark taught scripture to first year theology students in Butler, N.J. He retired from teaching in 1961 and lived in Butler for two years and at St. Francis of Assisi Friary in New York City for 11 years. While in New York City, he heard confessions in the morning and helped in the Franciscan Missionary Union office during the day. Fr. Mark’s life spent in dedication to teaching and scholarship was recognized by the Order in 1953, when the title of Lector Jubilatus was conferred upon him by General Minister Fr. Augustine Sepinski, OFM.
In 1974, Fr. Mark was transferred to the Provincial infirmary at St. Bonaventure University, where he died on Sept. 26, 1981. He was 85 years old, a professed friar for 65 years and a priest for 59 years.