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Rev. Msgr. John F. Morales, JCD

Deceased: 2020-01-14

Diocese: GARY

CSM Graduation Year: 1965

The Reverend Monsignor John F. Morales J.C.D., priest of the Diocese of Gary in Indiana, in retirement in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in California, expired on Tuesday, 14 January 2020.

Born in Chicago, Illinois to Roy Edward Morales and Mary Agnes (Nee: Collins) Morales on 8 March 1934, the priest received elementary education at Holy Rosary School and secondary education at Saint Willibrord High School, on the South Side of Chicago. Both schools are now closed.

Monsignor earned his Bachelor of Arts degree at Saint Norbert College in De Pere, Wisconsin. He completed his studies for the Priesthood at Mount Saint Mary of the West Seminary in Cincinnati (Norwood) Ohio. He was ordained a Priest of the Diocese of Gary in the Cathedral of the Holy Angels, Gary, by the late Andrew G. Grutka, First Bishop of Gary, on 28 May 1960.

Three months after priestly ordination, Bishop Grutka assigned Monsignor Morales to graduate studies at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D. C. and later at the Lateran University in Rome, Italy. While doing doctoral studies Monsignor Morales resided at the Casa Santa Maria, of the North American College in Rome. During this time, the Monsignor worked each morning at the sessions of the Second Vatican Council in Saint Peter Archbasilica in the Vatican. He thus was present when each of the fifteen documents of Vatican Council II were proclaimed.

Monsignor Morales earned the degree of Doctor of Canon Law, magna cum laude, on 13 July 1966, from the Lateran University in Rome, and returned immediately to ministry in the Diocese of Gary.

Over the decades until his retirement, Monsignor served his diocese as Assistant Pastor at Saint Mark Parish, Gary; Saint Mary of the Immaculate Conception Parish in Michigan City, Indiana; and the Cathedral of the Holy Angels. He was Parish Administrator at Saint Luke Parish, Gary. Then he was Pastor of Saint Mark, Gary and at Nativity of Our Savior, Portage.

Monsignor served the Diocese of Gary as Vice-Judicial Vicar and Associate Editor of Our Sunday Visitor (Gary edition), Diocesan Director of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith and of the Pontifical Association of the Holy Childhood. He was subsequently appointed Judicial Vicar of the Gary Tribunal, Chancellor of the Diocese, Director of Cemeteries, Diocesan Consultor, episcopal appointee to the Presbyteral Council and the first Moderator of the Curia.

At the request of Bishop Andrew G. Grutka, Pope Saint John Paul II, named him a Prelate of Honor, with the title of Monsignor, on 27 April 1984.

In his retirement, the Monsignor lived in Southern California, where he said he went “to escape the cold.” He ministered in three parishes of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles until his death.

Funeral service Wednesday, January 22, 2020 beginning with morning prayer at 10 a.m. followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:30 a.m. at St. Bridget Church, corner of Front and Center St., Hobart, IN. Interment at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, 6011 W. 111th St. Alsip, IL 60803. Visitation will begin with the Rite of Reception on Tuesday, January 21, 2020 at St. Bridget Church, beginning at 2:00 p.m. ending with the Celebration of Evening Prayer at 7:00 p.m. Visitation will also be held on Wednesday from 9:00 a.m. until 10:00 a.m.