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MCKENNEY, THOMAS E.

MCKENNEY, THOMAS E. (22 Oct. 1889-27 May 1945) served as the founding pastor of OUR LADY OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT CHURCH (1922-34), the first Roman Catholic church in the Diocese of Cleveland established for AFRICAN AMERICANS. He also served as the second priest of St. Thomas Aquinas Church (1940-45), then the largest Catholic parish on Cleveland's east side. McKenney was born in Cleveland, one of 6 children of John P. and Theresa Riley McKenney. He was educated at Immaculate Conception School and St. Ignatius College (later JOHN CARROLL UNIVERSITY). A graduate of ST. MARY SEMINARY in 1914, he was ordained 6 June 1914 by Bishop JOHN PATRICK FARRELLY. His first charge was assistant pastor at St. Agnes Church. During WORLD WAR I, McKenney served as a U.S. Army chaplain in France (1918-19). Before being appointed to Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament, he was priest of churches in Maximo and Harrisburg, OH (1919-21) and EAST CLEVELAND (St. Philomena Church, 1921). From 1934-40 he was pastor of ST. MALACHI'S CHURCH. McKenney is buried in CALVARY CEMETERY.