Father Fabian Kelly, C.P., Holy Cross Province (1883-1954)

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Born James William Kelly on June 17, 1883 in the shadows of St. Paul of the Cross Monastery, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania he was about twelve years old when two of his brothers John F. and John R were professed as Passionist Brothers known as Brother Gabriel and Edmund, respectively. James William was a door boy at St. Paul of the Cross before he went to the Passionist Preparatory Seminary at St. Mary’s Dunkirk, New York in September 1898. First, he was not deemed intelligent enough and was sent home. But later he returned to Dunkirk and made a better showing. On August 15, 1902 he professed his vows back in Pittsburgh with the name Fabian. When the provinces split in 1906 Fabian Kelly was in studies at Holy Cross Monastery in Cincinnati, Ohio. On April 28, 1909 he was ordained to the priesthood. He was a pastor in St. Louis, Chicago, and St. Paul, Kansas. Frequently he gave Forty Hour devotions, Lenten courses and helped out at country parishes. He also held hospital chaplaincies in the Detroit area in institutions for people with tuberculosis and in prisons. At times he was troubled by pneumonia. When he retired from his chaplain work in Detroit he was given the opportunity to move to the western part of the country. He died on October 16, 1954 at Sisters of Mercy Hospital in Kalispell, Montana where he was serving as a chaplain and was most well-respected. He was buried in Pittsburgh at the request of his family.