Fr. Colin McKenna’s funeral is Tuesday

A vigil mass will be celebrated today at St. Augustine's Cathedral

Fr. Colin McKenna

Fr. Colin McKenna

Fr. Colin McKenna, who was killed when he was struck by a train on Wednesday, Sept. 9, will lie in state at St. Augustine’s Cathedral in Bridgeport from 2 to 5 today, Sept. 14.

At 5, the Rev. Msgr. William Scheyd will celebrate a vigil mass, with a homily given by the Rev. Robert Crofut.

Calling hours will be at St. Augustine’s on Tuesday morning, Sept. 15, from 9 to 10:30, after which a Mass of Christian Burial will begin at 11. The Most Rev. Frank Caggiano, Bishop of Bridgeport, will be the main celebrant and homilist. Interment will follow in the Priest Circle at St. Michael’s Cemetery in Stratford. Contributions in memory of Fr. McKenna may be made to Clergy Support through Catholic Charities, 238 Jewett Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06606.

McKenna was killed Wednesday morning after being struck by a Metro-North Train in Westport. His death is being investigated as a suicide.

A native of Westport, he had lived in Wilton for a number of years, according to a spokesman for the Diocese of Bridgeport, and he often said Mass at Sacred Heart in Georgetown.

For the past two years he served as a writer and editor at the diocese office of communications. Among his work was a number of op-ed pieces for local newspapers. He also wrote and published a book of op-eds he had sent to the New York Times (http://www.blurb.com/b/5072543-never-published).

With a great interest in general knowledge, he participated in the TV game show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, calling it “an unbelievable experience.”

He also loved animals of all kinds and often adopted pets that needed homes.

“Colin will be fondly remembered as a kind and gentle priest who loved his ministry and helping others,” his obituary read.

Caggiano called McKenna’s death “a great tragedy for our diocese” which he “faithfully served throughout his priesthood.”

McKenna graduated from Fairfield College Preparatory School in 1982 where he was co-captain of the swim team. He also coached the swim team at New Fairfield High School and was the aquatic director at the New Canaan YMCA.

He graduated the University of Vermont in 1986 and earned his master of divinity degree from Pope Saint John XXIII Seminary in Weston, Mass., in 1999. He was ordained to the priesthood that year by the Most. Rev. Edward Egan, the third Bishop of Bridgeport.

His first assignment was parochial vicar of St. Joseph’s Parish in Shelton. In addition to Sacred Heart, he also served at St. Roch Parish and St. Mary Parish in Greenwich, as well as many other parishes within the diocese.

McKenna was born in Bridgeport, the son of Winifred (Tona) and the late Eugene R. McKenna. He is survived by his mother , his brother, Gene McKenna, and Gene’s wife, Moon, of Fairfield, and many cousins in both the United States and Ireland.

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