He received a licentiate in theology from the North American College and Gregorian University, Rome, and a doctorate in canon law, summa cum laude, from Gregorian University.
His assignments in the Diocese of Rochester included: associate pastor, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, Rochester defender of the bond and promoter of justice in the diocesan tribunal; secretary to Bishop James E. Kearney; vice chancellor of the Diocese of Rochester; chancellor of the Diocese of Rochester; Catholic chaplain, Monroe County jail; Catholic chaplain, Rochester police department Catholic chaplain, Highland Hospital, Rochester; pastor, St. Joseph parish Penfield; director, bishop's annual Catholic Thanksgiving Appeal.
It was during his time as pastor in Penfield that I first met Bishop Moynihan. After serving as pastor of St. Joseph parish in Penfield, he received a position as associate secretary general, Catholic Near East Welfare Association and worked out of offices in New York City. I had the opportunity to serve in his former parish in Penfield in 1993 when I served as Parochial Vicar at St. Joseph parish with Father Michael Conboy, who followed the then Father Moynihan as pastor of St. Joseph parish. I heard many wonderful stories at St. Joseph parish from grateful parishioners telling of the years he had served as their pastor.
On May 29, 1995, Bishop Moynihan was ordained and installed as the ninth bishop of the Diocese of Syracuse. He served as Bishop of Syracuse until he retired on April 21, 2009. Below are words from Bishop Robert Cunningham, Bishop of Syracuse.
“Today, we all join in mourning the death of Most Rev. James M. Moynihan who served as the 9th bishop of Syracuse from 1995-2009. In the 84th year of his life and the 60th year of his priesthood, the Lord has called Bishop Moynihan to Himself,” Bishop Robert J. Cunningham said in a statement announcing Bishop Moynihan’s death. “We thank him for a lifetime of service to the Church and in a very special way for his service to the Diocese of Syracuse. We pray now that the evening has come, the fever of his life is over, his work is done and that God will give him a safe lodging, holy rest and peace forever.”
Services for Bishop Moynihan were scheduled at The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, 259 East Onondaga Street, Syracuse. Reception and viewing of his body took place on Thursday March 9 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. concluding with a Prayer Vigil for Bishop Moynihan at 7 p.m. On Friday, March 10 viewing was scheduled from 9 a.m. -10:30 a.m. followed by The Mass of Christian Burial for Bishop Moynihan at 11 a.m. The celebrant being His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan. Burial to take place following the Mass in the Cathedral Crypt.
Please pray for the repose of the soul of Bishop Moynihan and for all his loved ones mourning his death. May he rest in peace and receive the rewards of his goodness.
God’s blessings and peace, Father Bill