SILVER SPRING, Md. — Harry Monaco, OFM, died Dec. 5 at Holy Name College after a yearlong battle with cancer. He was 48 years old, a professed Franciscan for nine years and a priest for two.
Funeral services will he held this week in Upstate New York, beginning Dec. 9 with viewings from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m., at Armer Funeral Home, 39 E. High St., Ballston Spa, NY 12020. A vigil prayer service will be at 8 p.m.
The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Dec. 10 at St. Mary’s Church, 167 Milton Ave., Ballston Spa NY 12020. Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, will be principal celebrant and Michael Blastic, OFM, will preach the homily.
Harry’s remains will be transported to St. Bonaventure University, Allegany, N.Y., where a prayer service will be held at 1 p.m. on Dec. 12 at the University Chapel. Burial will follow at St. Bonaventure Cemetery.
The son of Harry and Angela Monaco, Harry was born Oct. 14, 1963, in Ballston Spa. He graduated from St. Bonaventure University in 1985, with a bachelor’s degree in history.
In 1986, he entered the Province’s formation program, and following his postulant and novitiate years, Harry completed three years of education at the Washington Theological Union, in Washington, D.C., and a one-year internship in campus ministry at Siena College in Loudonville, N.Y., before leaving the Order in 1992.
For the next 10 years, he worked in Boston as a social worker at Victory Programs while attaining a master’s degree in social work from Boston College.
In 2002, he again felt drawn to religious life and entered St. Joseph’s Monastery, a Trappist community in Spencer, Mass. At the end of a two-year period there, Harry requested to join the Order of Friars Minor once again and was received into the novitiate in 2004. He then professed his first vows in 2005 and final vows in 2008. Harry was ordained a priest in 2009.
After completing his M.Div. degree at WTU in 2007, Harry was assigned to St. Bonaventure University, where he completed a master’s degree in Franciscan Studies. There, he taught in Clare College, was a faculty advisor, and played piano and organ. Harry was also active with Mt. Irenaeus, the Franciscan mountain retreat affiliated with SBU.
In the fall of 2010, he enrolled in the doctoral program at The Catholic University of America and moved to Holy Name College in Silver Spring. He was forced to discontinue his studies earlier this year following his diagnosis.
Harry is survived by his parents, his brother Vincent and brother’s wife, Nancy, and sister and her husband, Patricia and Hector Gonzales, all of Ballston Spa. Condolences may be sent to Mr. and Mrs. Harry Monaco, 148 Maple Ave., Ballston Spa NY 12020. Memories and thoughts about Harry can be posted online in his Armer Funeral Home guest book.
Memorial contributions may be made to: The Franciscans — St. Anthony’s Guild, 4 Jersey Street, East Rutherford, NJ 07073-1012, or to the Fr. Harry Monaco Scholarship, St. Bonaventure University, P.O. Box 2500, St. Bonaventure, NY 14778.
— Compiled by Theresa Bartha and Fr. Dominic Monti, OFM
Editor’s note: Photos of Harry are included in the Our Events gallery — in the 2009 “Priesthood Ordination, NYC” and 2008 “Solemn Profession of Vows, NYC” albums.