The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

April 6, 2013

Msgr. John B. Hagerty

Erie clergyman served Shenango Valley parishes


---- — Monsignor John. B. Hagerty, a well-known, well-respected and highly-esteemed priest of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Erie, died early Saturday morning (4-6-13) at St. Mary Home at Asbury Ridge, Erie. He was 83.

Monsignor Hagerty was born in Erie, on Jan. 1, 1930, the son of Bert and Olive Thompson Hagerty. A 1947 graduate of Cathedral Preparatory School, monsignor began his journey to priestly ministry entering St. Mark Seminary, Baltimore, Md., in September 1949 where he received a bachelor of arts degree in philosophy. He was then appointed to Theological College and the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. where he received a master of arts degree in theology. Post-graduate studies were taken at the University of Pittsburgh, Georgetown University and University of Notre Dame.

He was ordained to the priesthood on May 19, 1955 at St. Peter Cathedral, Erie, by the Most Rev. Edward Peter McManaman.

In May of 1955, Monsignor Hagerty was assigned to the Cathedral Preparatory School and to weekend assistance at St. James Parish, Erie. In 1959, he was appointed Dean of Studies at St. Mark Seminary and in 1968, appointed Rector of the Seminary. In 1972, he began a five-year appointment as Headmaster of Elk County Catholic High School in St. Mary’s, where he also served as administrator of St. Benedict Mission Church, Daguscahonda. Subsequent appointments included pastoral appointments to St. Joseph Parish, Sharon (1977-1984), Headmaster of the Cathedral Preparatory School (1984-1989), Blessed Sacrament Parish, Erie (1989-1991), St. Thomas Parish, Corry (1991-1997) and Notre Dame Parish, Hermitage (1997-2005.)

He retired from the active ministry in February of 2005 but, dedicated and committed teacher that he was, taught Latin part-time to students at Blessed Sacrament and Cathedral Preparatory schools. In 1970 he was designated a Prelate of Honor by Pope Paul VI.

Monsignor served on numerous boards, among them the Presbyteral (Priest) Council, the College of Consultors, Priest Personnel Board and the Board of Trustees at Christ the King Seminary, East Aurora, New York. In 2005, Bishop Donald Trautman appointed him Episcopal Delegate for Retired Priests.

He was pre-deceased by his loving parents, Bert and Olive Hagerty and an uncle C. Francis Hagerty. He is survived by his cousins, Jerry, Mike, Chris, Adrian, Sean and Boo Hagerty  and by Ellen Hagerty, John and Julie Minton and Tom Clancey.

Monsignor Hagerty always spoke words worth remembering and taking to heart. In a letter to a fellow priest but words applicable to all, he offered the following reflection, “My worth and yours, Tom, and every priest’s, is not in our brains or our talent, but in our sanctity, or at least our attempt at it. Wherever you go, God is there. He is the one source and center of what you desire and need. You will find Him all over the globe; your job will be to more firmly root Him in the hearts of your people.”

In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Monsignor John B. Hagerty Scholarship Fund at Cathedral Preparatory School or the Monsignor John B. Hagerty Scholarship Fund at Elk County Catholic High School, St. Marys, Pa. or the Shenango Valley Catholic School System, Hermitage.

Run 1x Brugger Funeral home, 1595 West 38th St., Erie (814) 864-4864


Msgr. John B., 83, of Erie.

Calling hours: 4 to 8 p.m. Monday (4-8-13) at the Cathedral Preparatory School, 225 W. (th St., Erie, and from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Tuesday (4-9-13) at Blessed Sacrament Church 1626 W. 26th St., Erie. Arrangements have been entrusted to the BRUGGER FUNERAL HOME and CREMATORY, 1595 W. 38th St., Erie.  Condolences and photos may be sent to

Service: The Most Reverend Lawrence T. Persico will celebrate the Mass of Christian burial at 11 a.m. Tuesday (4-9-13) at the church. A memorial service will be in the Shenango Valley at a later date.

Burial: Calvary Cemetery, Erie.