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Archdiocesan Priest, Rev. William J. McNulty, Dies

McNulty was a retired archdiocesan priest and pastor emeritus of St. Patrick Parish in Lake Forest

Chicago (Aug. 13, 2021) – Rev. William J. McNulty, pastor emeritus of St. Patrick Parish in Lake Forest, died Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2021. He was 87 years old.

McNulty was born on March 19, 1934, in Chicago. He attended St. Angela, Quigley Preparatory Seminary and the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary. McNulty was ordained to the priesthood on May 1, 1961, by Cardinal Albert Meyer.

After ordination, McNulty served as assistant pastor at St. Justin the Martyr Parish on 71st St., St. Martha Parish in Morton Grove and Queen of All Saints Basilica Parish on Sauganash Ave. He served as chaplain to Catholic Action Federations and was director of the archdiocesan Office for Marriage and Family Life and the Pastoral Services Department. McNulty served as associate pastor at St. Mary Parish in Evanston and pastor at St. Patrick Parish. The title of pastor emeritus of St. Patrick Parish was bestowed on him in 2004.

Rev. Larry Hennessey, who has spent the last 30 years at the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary, would share coffee cake and coffee every Sunday with McNulty and talk about the Church. He described McNulty as a man who loved the Lord and proud of showing off his Irish heritage at parish festivals.

“He was very unpretentious,” Hennessey said. “There was a real humility about him, that he readily acknowledged. He loved to learn new things.”

McNulty was instrumental in overseeing the construction of the new St. Patrick’s church to accommodate the growing number of families, Hennessey said.

“There was another side to him that a lot of people close to him knew -- he loved natural beauty,” Hennessey added. “In his Christmas letter, he would always include pictures he had taken of natural scenery and they would always be accompanied with a meditation of the beauty and work of the Lord.”

Visitation hours will be from 9 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 14, 2021, followed by the funeral Mass at 11 a.m. All funeral services will be held at St. Patrick Parish,

991 S. Waukegan Road, Lake Forest. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, it is strongly recommended that attendees wear masks. The funeral Mass will be livestreamed on the parish website and on its Facebook page. Hennessey will be the main celebrant and homilist. A celebration gathering will follow the Mass in the church hall.