Madison - Guess who died! Fr. Jim McEnery. Finally.* (That's 'finally' with an *.) Fr. James Joseph McEnery, age 95, died on May 5th, 2022 in Madison, Wisconsin. He was born two days late, on St. Joseph's Day, 1927, instead of St. Patrick's Day, and that pretty much set the pace for all that followed, and why his middle name is Joseph. He grew up in Logan Square in Chicago, mostly in the house his grandfather built. After grade school at Our Lady of Grace and high school at St. Philips, and after the war ended, he mentioned to his mom (Ann Louise) that he might try the seminary. Good Catholic that she was, she had just one word that expressed her heartfelt feelings: "You?" Fr. Jim's dad, James Hamilton McEnery, was less flabbergasted. Younger brother Bob, and much younger brother Mike who both predeceased Jim in death, were noncommittal at the time.
Fr. Jim served the people all over the Diocese of Madison for many years. His longest tenure was serving as Pastor for St. Mary’s in Milton, Wisconsin. He served in a number of parishes in his retirement, mainly at Holy Redeemer in Palm City, Florida. This month marks his 69th anniversary as a priest.
He will be fondly remembered for a little while and then completely forgotten, because, let's face it, folks, there's nothing deader than a dead priest. At least here on earth. Bishops tend to be remembered a bit longer.
Fr. Jim is survived by a sister-in-law, Nora McEnery of Arizona. He was preceded in death by his parents, James and Ann Louise McEnery; and two brothers, Bob and Mike McEnery.
The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Peter Catholic Church, 5001 N. Sherman Ave., Madison, Wisconsin, on Wednesday, May 11, 2022, at 11:00 am. The Most Reverend Donald J. Hying, Bishop of Madison, will celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, with The Reverend Father William Nolan as homilist. Recorded live streaming of the Funeral Mass will be available through Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/StPeterMadison. A Visitation will be held at St. Peter Catholic Church on Wednesday, May 11, 2022, from 10:00 am until the start of the Funeral Mass.
A Second Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Saint Mary Catholic Church, 837 Parkview Dr., Milton, Wisconsin, on Thursday, May 12, 2022 at 11:00 am with The Reverend Father Bill Nolan presiding and The Reverend Father David Wanish concelebrating. A visitation at St. Mary Catholic Church will be held from 10:00 am until the start of the Funeral Mass. Burial will take place following the service at St. Mary Catholic Cemetery, 920 W High St., Milton.
In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to St. Peter Parish, Madison, St. Mary Parish, Milton or Agrace HospiceCare.
* That's 'finally' in the more earthly sense. Fr. Jim didn't believe in reincarnation; he didn't last time either. Ah, but resurrection -- now that's another thing! That's the Good News: 'Follow me and I will give you eternal life." -- Jesus
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