Terence McNally, OFM
1899 – 1978
Fr. Terence McNally, OFM, was born Oct. 25, 1899 in New York City. He entered the novitiate at St. Bonaventure Friary, Paterson, N.J., in 1918, professing temporary vows one year later. The flu epidemic, which ravaged the country, claimed five members of the community that year. He made his solemn profession in 1922 and was ordained in 1925.
During the next 50 years, he ministered as a teacher, preacher, administrator, builder and confessor. He began his priestly ministry with the Province’s Mission Band. When the Province accepted the care of St. Stephen of Hungary Parish in New York City, Fr. Terence was appointed pastor. He initiated the St. Jude novena and served there for 15 years. He was a Provincial Councilor from 1943 to 1949.
After three years as pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Parish in New York City, he was appointed pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Long Beach Island, N.J., in 1955. There he built the churches at Beach Haven, Brant Beach and Surf City, and served for 12 years. His final years of ministry were spent as a confessor at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in New York City. Fr. Terence was the first novice in the history of the Province to be allowed to smoke, and he remained an inveterate cigar smoker his entire life.
He died on Feb. 12, 1978 at St. Anthony’s Hospital, St. Petersburg, Fla. Fr. Terence was 78 years old, a professed friar for 58 years and a priest for 52 years.