Lawrence Stephen McMahon

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Most Rev. Lawrence Stephen McMahon
Bishop of Hartford
Bishop Lawrence Stephen McMahon.jpg
Church Roman Catholic Church
See Hartford
In office August 10, 1879—August 21, 1893
Predecessor Thomas Galberry, O.S.A.
Successor Michael Tierney
Ordination March 24, 1860
Consecration August 10, 1879
Personal details
Born (1835-12-26)December 26, 1835
St. John, New Brunswick, Canada
Died August 21, 1893(1893-08-21) (aged 57)
Lakeville, Connecticut, United States

Lawrence Stephen McMahon (December 26, 1835 – August 21, 1893) was a Canadian-born prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as Bishop of Hartford from 1879 until his death in 1893.


Lawrence McMahon was born in St. John, New Brunswick, and in 1839 came with his parents to the United States, where he was raised in Cambridge, Massachusetts.[1] Receiving his early education at the public schools of Boston, he entered Holy Cross College in Worcester at age 15, and remained there until the college was destroyed by fire in 1852.[1] He then studied rhetoric at Montreal, Quebec, and philosophy at Baltimore, Maryland.[2] He attended the College of Aix in France and then completed his theological studies in Rome, where he was ordained to the priesthood on March 24, 1860.[3]

McMahon was first assigned as a curate at Holy Cross Cathedral in Boston, and served as chaplain to the 28th Massachusetts regiment during the Civil War from 1863 to 1865.[1] Returning from the war, he served as pastor in Bridgewater and then in New Bedford, where he erected St. Lawrence's Church and a hospital under the care of the Sisters of Mercy.[2] He was also named the first vicar general of the Diocese of Providence, Rhode Island, in 1872.[2]

On May 16, 1879, McMahon was appointed the fifth Bishop of Hartford, Connecticut, by Pope Leo XIII.[3] He received his episcopal consecration on August 10 from Archbishop John Joseph Williams, with Bishops John Loughlin and Patrick Thomas O'Reilly serving as co-consecrators, at Hartford.[3] He soon liquidated the diocese's $60,000 debt, and continued to execute the building plans of his predecessors for the Cathedral of St. Joseph, which he dedicated in May 1892.[4] During his 14-year tenure, he established 48 parishes and 16 parochial schools.[5]

McMahon later died at Lakeville,[1] aged 57. He is buried at the Cathedral of St. Joseph.[1]


Preceded by
Thomas Galberry, O.S.A.
Bishop of Hartford
Succeeded by
Michael Tierney