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Doyle OFM, Fr. Mathias - Loudonville Friar  
LOUDONVILLE - Father Mathias F. Doyle, OFM, 82, a professed Franciscan friar for 58 years and a priest for 54 years, died Thursday (June 16, 2016) at St. Bernardine of Siena Friary in Loudonville after a brief illness. Fr. Mathias was born John Joseph on Nov. 18, 1933, in Malone to Francis and Madeline Donnelly Doyle. After graduating from St. Augustine Parish School and Catholic Central High School in Troy, in 1951, he earned a bachelor's degree in history and political science from Siena College in Loudonville in 1955. He was received into the Order of Friars Minor, Holy Name Province, on July 14, 1956, in Lafayette, N.J., and professed first vows there the following year. He studied philosophy at St. Francis College in Rye Beach, N.H., and theology at Holy Name College in Washington, D.C., professing final vows on Aug. 22, 1960. He was ordained to the priesthood in Washington on March 17, 1962. Following a year of pastoral training at St. Anthony Shrine in Boston, Fr. Mathias was assigned to the faculty of St. Francis College, where he taught history and sociology for two years. He received his master's degree from Catholic University of America in Washington in 1965, and completed his Ph.D. in political science from Notre Dame University in South Bend, Ind., in 1968. Fr. Mathias' first assignment after studies was to his alma mater, Siena College, where he was professor of political science from 1968 to 1975. During this time, he founded and was chair of the political science department and served as a member of the president's advisory council. He became guardian of the Franciscan community at the college and served as assistant director of the Province's pre-novitiate formation program. In 1975, Fr. Mathias was elected the 17th president of St. Bonaventure University in Allegany. The youngest friar ever selected for the position, his 15-year term in office is the third longest at the university. The Mathias Doyle Hall on campus is named after him. From 1990 to 1991, Fr. Mathias served as the first Administrator's Fellow with the U.S. Agency for International Development (AID) in Washington. He was also special consultant to the Office of Congressman Amory Houghton. Fr. Mathias was assigned to St. Anthony Shrine in Boston in 1991, where he ministered for two years. Then, in 1993, he returned to St. Bonaventure University as professor of political science and served in that capacity for the next seven years. From 2000 to 2002, while stationed at Holy Name College in Silver Spring, Md., Fr. Mathias became the Province's representative to the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), an advocacy group which promotes social justice in corporations. He would go on to serve in this capacity for more than 12 years. He was also a member of the Province's Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Directorate. Fr. Mathias returned to St. Anthony Shrine in 2002, where he served as director of human services for the next five years. During this time, he was appointed general visitor to the Province of Ireland and delegate general to the friars in India. In 2004, Fr. Mathias organized a Province-wide convocation on the topic of globalization at Siena College. From 2007 to 2011, Fr. Mathias served as director of Siena's Franciscan Center for Service and Advocacy (FCSA). After concluding his position, he remained on campus to assist the FCSA in more informal ways. He also ministered at Our Lady of the Assumption parish, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet Provincial house and an assisted-living facility in the Loudonville area. Fr. Mathias is survived by several nieces and nephews. A wake will be from 7 to 9 p.m. today (Saturday, June 18, 2016) at St. Bernardine of Siena Friary Chapel at Siena College, Loudonville. A Mass of Christian burial will be at 11 a.m. Sunday at St. Mary of the Angels Chapel, Siena College. Burial will take place at 8 a.m. Monday (June 20, 2016) in the Franciscan Friars plot at St. Agnes Cemetery in Albany. Memorial donations may be sent to Franciscan Friars - Holy Name Province, 144 W. 32nd St., New York, NY 10001-3202.
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Published in The Olean Times Herald on June 18, 2016
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