William Hafey

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The Most Reverend

William Joseph Hafey
Personal details
DenominationRoman Catholic
Ordination history of
William Hafey
Episcopal consecration
Consecrated byMichael Joseph Curley (Baltimore)
DateJune 24, 1925
Episcopal succession
Bishops consecrated by William Hafey as principal consecrator
Martin John O'ConnorJanuary 27, 1943
Henry KlonowskiJuly 2, 1947

William Joseph Hafey (March 19, 1888 – May 12, 1954) was an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as Bishop of Raleigh (1925–1937) and Bishop of Scranton (1938–1954).


Early life and education[edit]

William Hafey was born in Chicopee, Massachusetts, to James and Catherine (née Mulcahy) Hafey.[1] He attended Holy Cross College in Worcester, from where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in 1909.[1] From 1909 to 1910, he studied at Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C.[1] He then attended Mount St. Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland.[1]

Ordination and ministry[edit]

Hafey was ordained to the priesthood on June 16, 1914.[2] He then served as a curate at St. Joseph's Church in Baltimore until 1920, when he became chancellor of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.[1]

Bishop of Raleigh[edit]

On April 6, 1925, Hafey was appointed the first Bishop of Raleigh, North Carolina, by Pope Pius XI.[2] He received his episcopal consecration on the following June 24 from Archbishop Michael Joseph Curley at the Baltimore Cathedral. Bishops Thomas Michael O'Leary and Michael Joseph Keyes, S.M., served as co-consecrators.[2]

Bishop of Scranton[edit]

Bishop Hafey was named Coadjutor Bishop of Scranton, Pennsylvania, and Titular Bishop of Appia on October 2, 1937.[2] He later succeeded the late Thomas Charles O'Reilly as the fourth Bishop of Scranton on March 25, 1938.[2] He created new parishes, multiplied the number of buildings, and increased the number of priests and religious.[3] He was also dedicated to social needs such as education, health care, and youth activities.[3]

He later died at age 66. A former Hazleton high school was named Bishop Hafey High School in his memory.

In 1958, the newly established Knights of Columbus Bishop Hafey Council 4507, of High Point, North Carolina, was named in memory of Bishop William Joseph Hafey. At that time, High Point was part of the Diocese of Raleigh. Since its creation in 1971, the Diocese of Charlotte has included High Point.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Curtis, Georgina Pell (1947). The American Catholic Who's Who. VII. Grosse Pointe, Michigan: Walter Romig.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Bishop William Joseph Hafey". Catholic-Hierarchy.org.[self-published source]
  3. ^ a b "Bishop William J. Hafey: 1937-1954". Roman Catholic Diocese of Scranton. Archived from the original on 2009-09-05. Retrieved 2009-08-18.

External links[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Thomas Charles O'Reilly
Bishop of Scranton
Succeeded by
Jerome Daniel Hannan
New creation Bishop of Raleigh
Succeeded by
Eugene J. McGuinness