John Francis Donoghue

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The Most Reverend

John Francis Donoghue
Archbishop emeritus of Atlanta
InstalledJune 1993
Term endedDecember 9, 2004
PredecessorJames Patterson Lyke, OFM
SuccessorWilton Daniel Gregory
Other postsBishop of Charlotte (1984–1993)
OrdinationJune 4, 1955
ConsecrationDecember 18, 1984
Personal details
Born(1928-08-09)August 9, 1928
Washington, D.C., USA
DiedNovember 11, 2011(2011-11-11) (aged 83)
Atlanta, Georgia, USA
BuriedArlington Memorial Park in Sandy Springs, Georgia
NationalityUnited States
Coat of armsJohn Francis Donoghue's coat of arms

John Francis Donoghue (August 9, 1928 – November 11, 2011) served as the second Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte and then as the fifth Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Atlanta in the United States of America.

Early life and education[edit]

Donoghue was born and raised in Washington, D.C., the second of four brothers born to Irish immigrant parents, Daniel and Rose (née Ryan) Donoghue. On June 4, 1955, after receiving a Bachelor's Degree in Philosophy and a graduate degree in Sacred Theology from St. Mary's Seminary and University in Baltimore, Maryland and Roland Park, Maryland, and after ordination to the transitional diaconate, he was ordained to the priesthood for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, by the then-Archbishop of Washington, Patrick O'Boyle, who was later a Cardinal.

Service within the Church[edit]

While originally planning to remain a parish priest, Donoghue was asked in 1964 to study for a Licentiate in Canon Law, and was then assigned to the Archbishop of Washington's Office (he did serve in a variety of parish assignments).[citation needed]

For the next 18 years, he served on the staff under three successive Cardinals, all now deceased, who were Archbishops of Washington: Cardinals Patrick O'Boyle, William Wakefield Baum, and James Aloysius Hickey. From 1972 until 1983, he also filled the offices of Chancellor and Vicar General for that Archdiocese; in 1984 he also became Moderator of the Archdiocesan Curia, serving in that capacity until his episcopal consecration.[1] He was consecrated and installed as a Bishop on December 18, 1984, following his appointment by Pope John Paul II, as the second Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte.

Styles of
John Francis Donoghue
Coat of arms of John Francis Donoghue.svg
Reference styleThe Most Reverend
Spoken styleYour Excellency
Religious styleArchbishop
Posthumous stylenot applicable

In June 1993, he was appointed as the sixth Metropolitan Archbishop of Atlanta, Georgia by John Paul II, replacing the Most Reverend James P. Lyke, O.F.M., who had died of cancer on December 27, 1992, after only two years in office.[2] He led the Archdiocese for over ten years. Donoghue retired as Archbishop on December 9, 2004, and was succeeded by Wilton D. Gregory, who had served as an Auxiliary Bishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago.


Donoghue died, on November 11, 2011, aged 83.[3] His body lay in state at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus until his Funeral Mass at 11:00 AM on November 17 at the Cathedral of Christ the King.[4]

Donoghue's episcopal motto was: "To Live In Christ Jesus".

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Most Reverend John F. Donoghue". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta. Retrieved December 23, 2010.
  2. ^ "CHARLOTTE BISHOP NAMED NEW ATLANTA ARCHBISHOP". Orlando Sentinel. June 23, 1993. Retrieved December 23, 2010.
  3. ^ Seward, Christopher (November 12, 2011). "Former Atlanta Archbishop John Donoghue dies". Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
  4. ^ Funeral arrangements for Archbishop Donoghue

External links[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
James Patterson Lyke
Archbishop of Atlanta
Succeeded by
Wilton Daniel Gregory
Preceded by
Michael Joseph Begley
Bishop of Charlotte
Succeeded by
William George Curlin