Bernard O'Reilly (bishop of Hartford)
|Right Rev. Bernard O'Reilly|
|Bishop of Hartford|
|Church||Roman Catholic Church|
|In office||November 10, 1850—January 23, 1856|
|Successor||Francis Patrick McFarland|
|Ordination||October 16, 1831|
|Consecration||November 10, 1850|
March 1, 1803|
Columkille, County Longford, Ireland
|Died||January 23, 1856
SS Pacific (sunk), Irish Sea
O'Reilly was born in Columkille, County Longford, and embarked for the United States in January 1825 with the intention of studying for the priesthood. He attended the Seminary of Montreal in Quebec, Canada, before completing his theological studies at St. Mary's Seminary in Baltimore, Maryland. His brother was the Rev. William O'Reilly, who was the pastor in the late 1840s of St. Raymond's Church (Bronx, New York) in the Archdiocese of New York, later rector of Our Lady of the Isle (Newport, Rhode Island), and eventually Vicar General of the Diocese of Hartford.
He was ordained a priest by Bishop Francis Kenrick on October 13, 1831. He then served in New York City and Brooklyn, where he distinguished himself for his heroism during the cholera outbreak in 1832 and twice fell victim to the disease himself. He was transferred to Rochester in December 1832, and remained there until he became vicar general of the Diocese of Buffalo in 1847.
On August 9, 1850, O'Reilly was appointed the second Bishop of Hartford, Connecticut, by Pope Pius IX. He received his episcopal consecration on the following November 10 from Bishop John Timon, C.M., with Bishops John McCloskey and John Bernard Fitzpatrick serving as co-consecrators, at Rochester. He worked to secure priests for the diocese, and defended Catholics from the anti-Catholic movements of the era, such as Know-Nothingism. O'Reilly visited Europe in 1855 and embarked, on his return voyage, in January 1856 on the SS Pacific, which sailed from Liverpool for New York. The ship, however, was not heard of for over 130 years, when in 1991 her wreckage was identified in the Irish Sea off the coast of Wales.
- Clarke, Richard Henry. "Right Rev. Bernard O'Reilly, D.D.". Lives of the Deceased Bishops of the Catholic Church in the United States.
- Remigius Lafort, S.T.D., Censor, The Catholic Church in the United States of America: Undertaken to Celebrate the Golden Jubilee of His Holiness, Pope Pius X. Volume 3: The Province of Baltimore and the Province of New York, Section 1: Comprising the Archdiocese of New York and the Diocese of Brooklyn, Buffalo and Ogdensburg Together with some Supplementary Articles on Religious Communities of Women. (New York City: The Catholic Editing Company, 1914), p.392.
- "Bishop William Barber Tyler". Catholic-Hierarchy.org.
- "Hartford". Catholic Encyclopedia.
- "History of the Archdiocese". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford.
|Bishop of Hartford
Francis Patrick McFarland