Vianney Devlin Dies in New Jersey

Maria Hayes Friar News

RINGWOOD, N.J. — Vianney Devlin, OFM, 84, a professed Franciscan friar for 63 years and a priest for 58 years, died May 26 at Holy Name Friary.

A wake will be held at 4:30 p.m. on May 29 at Holy Name Friary, 2 Morris Rd., Ringwood Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, will celebrate a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:30 a.m. on May 30 at Holy Name Friary. Burial will follow at God’s Acre Cemetery, Ringwood.

Early Years
Born on Dec. 26, 1929 to Frank and Marguerite Devlin, Vianney was baptized Francis at St. Brendan’s Church in New Haven, Conn. He graduated in 1947 from Fairfield, Conn., College Preparatory School, located on the campus of Fairfield University, where he studied for one year.

He studied for one year at St. Joseph’s Seraphic Seminary, Callicoon, N.Y., before he was received into the Order in 1949 at St. Bonaventure Friary, Paterson, N.J., professing his first vows one year later. Vianney studied philosophy at St. Stephen’s Friary, Croghan, N.Y., and St. Anthony Friary, Butler, N.J., and theology at Holy Name College in Washington. He professed solemn vows in 1953 and was ordained in 1955.

After completing theological studies in 1956, Vianney was assigned to St. Joseph’s Seraphic Seminary to teach Latin and English. He spent the 1958 academic year at the University of Notre Dame, where he earned a master’s degree in English. Vianney returned to the faculty at the Callicoon seminary, where he taught until 1961. He then attended the University of London, earning his doctorate in English in 1966.

From 1966 to 1982, Vianney taught at Siena College, Loudonville, N.Y., as associate professor of English. After taking a sabbatical year at the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, Calif., he joined the pastoral staff at St. Anthony Shrine, Boston, from 1983 to 1984. Vianney ministered for three years as a member of St. Francis Retreat Center, Rye Beach, N.H., before serving as chaplain to the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia in Aston, Pa., from 1987 to 1992. During these years, he also served on the Franciscan Pilgrimages staff during the summers.

He was briefly assigned to St. Joseph Parish in Winsted, Conn., before being named parochial vicar at St. Stephen of Hungary Parish in New York City. Vianney retired from full-time ministry in 2005, living first at St. Anthony Residence, Boston, where he served as vicar of the friary community. He moved to St. Anthony Friary, St. Petersburg, Fla., in 2012, before transferring to Holy Name Friary in 2013.

He was predeceased by his parents and brother, David, and leaves no immediate survivors. Memorial donations may be sent to Franciscan Friars-Holy Name Province, 144 West 32nd St., New York NY 10001.

 Compiled by Theresa Bartha and Maria Hayes