Rev. James P. Byrne, OSFS
Childs, MD - Rev. James P. Byrne, OSFS, professed member of the Wilmington-Philadelphia Province of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales for 68 years, died on Friday, March 20, 2020, at Childs, MD.
The Abington, PA, native was born on May 12, 1933, the son of the late James J. and Honora (Donahue) Byrne. He attended St. James parish elementary school, Elkins Park, PA, and graduated from Northeast Catholic High School in 1950. Father entered the Oblate novitiate and made first profession of vows on September 13, 1951, final profession of vows on September 13, 1954, and ordained to the priesthood on May 31, 1960. Father Byrne earned two degrees in Spanish: a BA from Niagara University and an MA from Catholic University. He also pursued additional graduate studies in French and Language Instruction at the University of Pennsylvania and West Chester University.
Following ordination, Father Byrne served on the faculty at Salesianum School, Wilmington, DE, where he also served as director of Casa de Sales, a community established for high school-aged male refugees from Cuba. From 1968 to 1974, he served on the faculty at Father Judge High School, Philadelphia, PA, returning to Salesianum from 1974 to 1981. The next three years saw him engaged in missionary work in Brazil, after which Fr. Byrne served a third and final stint at Salesianum School. After leaving Salesianum in 1990, Fr. Byrne worked in parochial ministries in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the Dioceses of Allentown, PA, Raleigh, NC, and Charlotte, NC. He retired to the Oblate community in Childs, MD, in 2012.
Fr. Byrne is survived by a brother, Robert J. Byrne; sister-in-law, Mary Ann Byrne; as well as nieces and nephews.
Due to restrictions associated with the COVID-19 crisis, the Mass of Christian Burial will be held at a later time.
Donations in memory of Fr. Byrne's life and legacy may be made to the Oblate Development Fund, P.O. Box 87, Childs, MD 21916-0087.
Published by The News Journal from Mar. 20 to Mar. 22, 2020.