Friars Affiliate Msgr. Thomas Leonard

Jocelyn Thomas Around the Province, Friar News


Kevin Mullen, left, and John Felice, right, present Msgr. Thomas Leonard with a plaque commemorating his affiliation to Holy Name Province. (Photo courtesy of Michael Harlan)

NEW YORK – Msgr. Thomas Leonard was affiliated to Holy Name Province last month in a ceremony at St. Francis of Assisi Friary on West 31st Street. He was recognized for his contributions to the poor of New York City at evening prayer on June 27 in the friary chapel.

After the presentation by Provincial Minister Kevin Mullen, OFM, John Felice, OFM, president of St. Francis Friends of the Poor, described the impact that Msgr. Leonard has had.

“We give thanks, Lord, for all the good you give us – for our fraternity and for the people we are so privileged to serve,” said John Felice.   “But we give special thanks tonight for Tom Leonard. John McVean and I, along with many others, have had the privilege for more than 30 years of serving on the Board of Broadway Housing Communities. His contribution in service to the poor has made the world a richer and better place. His kindness, understanding and good common sense have enriched all those he has so faithfully served.”


“For me, Tom has always been the ideal example of what it means to be a diocesan priest,” said John Felice at the presentation. “May the Lord grant him many more years of loving service to the Church he has so faithfully tended. Congratulations on a life lived so wisely and well.”

Msgr. Leonard and John McVean founded Broadway Housing Communities, said John Felice who joined the organization seven years later. From 2014 until July 2015, Msgr. Leonard was administrator of the Province’s former parish, St. Stephen of Hungary, on East 82nd Street.

“It was a lovely ceremony for a good man,” John Felice said.

As part of Monday’s celebration, Neil O’Connell, OFM, was honored as he leaves the New York City community for his new home – St. Anthony Friary in St. Petersburg, Fla. Neil had lived in New York City since 1993, working at several colleges including Lehman College, Marymount Manhattan College and the Borough of Manhattan Community College. He also served as director of religious education of St. Joseph of the Holy Family Church on West 125th Street.

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