Fr John Marley

Jun 11, 2024

Fr John Marley was born in Belfast on 11th January 1927. He was educated at St Patrick’s PES, St Comgall’s PES and St Malachy’s College, Belfast. He came to St Columban’s, Navan in September 1944 and was ordained priest on 21st December 1950.

John’s first appointment was to postgraduate studies in Rome where he was conferred with a doctorate in canon law in 1954. He was then appointed to the Philippines, where, after a short period as Secretary to the Nuncio in Manila, he spent four years in parish ministry in Mindanao.

There followed a period as NCWC correspondent in Manila before he was appointed to the staff of our major seminary at Milton, MA, US in 1963. In 1965 he became spiritual director at the same seminary.

In 1970 John became Rector of our Dalgan seminary and in 1973, Director of Education at the Irish Missionary Union. He was appointed vice-director of the Irish Region in 1977 to 1980 and was re-appointed to the same position from 1980 to 1983.

In 1983 John was happy to receive his next overseas appointment, this time to Chile. Over the next twelve years he served in many parishes in Santiago, Arica and Iquique, and later as Director of the Pontifical Mission Society.

In 1995 he served back in Ireland as an expert on wills and bequests to the Society.

John undertook a new mission in 1999 as hospital chaplain at Regina Medical Centre, Hastings, MN, USA, along with his friend Fr Jim Dunne, and worked there until he retired.

He spent periods in our Bristol Retirement Home, and in our Dalgan Retirement Home, where he died peacefully on 8th June 2024.

A missionary of great gifts, John served in an extraordinary variety of ministries with dedication and competence.

May he rest in peace.

A recording of Fr John Marley’s Funeral Mass:

Share This