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Rev. Msgr. Clinton J. Doskey

Deceased: 2012-04-22


CSM Graduation Year: 1964

Monsignor Clinton Doskey, a pastor and canon lawyer who in 58 years as a priest led Catholic parishes in New Orleans, Metairie, Kenner and St. Bernard, died Sunday at Ochsner Hospital. He was 81.

Monsignor Doskey nominally retired three years ago, but that meant merely escape from meetings and administrative responsibilities, said the Rev. Pat Williams, who succeeded Monsignor Doskey at his last assignment, St. Pius X parish.

Monsignor Doskey lived at St. Pius and continued to say Masses and do other ministry regularly, until he fell ill around Easter, Williams said.

As a young priest, Monsignor Doskey trained as a canon lawyer, meaning he handled church disputes, most frequently requests for marriage annulments in church courts. He continued that until just a few weeks ago, Williams said.

His career began before the revolutionary Second Vatican Council and spanned vast internal changes in the Catholic church. “He was a dedicated pastor, always present for the people,” Williams said. “We used to talk about the law a lot and he’d tell me, ‘The law is important, but it’s really about the people.”

Over his career Monsignor Doskey held several administrative posts at the Archdiocese of New Orleans under Archbishop Philip Hannan. The two became friends, and for a time the retired Hannan lived at St. Pius with Monsignor Doskey.

Monsignor Doskey delivered the eulogy at Hannan’s funeral last year.

As a native of New Orleans, Monsignor Doskey savored Mardi Gras and football. For many years he was chaplain of the Krewe of Endymion, and chaplain for the Touchdown Club, Williams said.

He is survived by his sister, a Dominican nun, Sister Mary Elizabeth Doskey, and by three brothers, Richard, Jimmy and David.