1903 – 1981 (June 4)
James Samuel Reilly was born December 8, 1903 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Edward F. Reilly and Mary Jane Mason. He was baptized December 27, 1903 at Annunciation BVM Church, Philadelphia, and was confirmed April 19, 1911 at St. Monica Church, Philadelphia. Upon graduation in 1921 from Roman Catholic High School, Philadelphia, James began undergraduate collegiate studies at Temple University, Philadelphia, in preparation for his work in the field of accounting and real estate. He entered the Augustinian formation program in 1927 at Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, New York, and was received into the novitiate on September 8, 1928. He professed simple vows on September 10, 1929 and solemn vows on September 10, 1932. He completed his college studies, earning a B. A. in Philosophy from Villanova College, Villanova, Pennsylvania, in 1932, and then pursued theological studies from 1932 to 1936 at Augustinian College, Washington, D.C. He was ordained to the priesthood on June 11, 1935.
After serving briefly during 1936 as Assistant Pastor at Immaculate Conception Parish, Hoosick Falls, New York, Father Reilly was named Master of Professed at St. Mary's Hall, Villanova. In 1938 he became Procurator at Villanova College. In 1941, Father Reilly began a long career in parish ministry. He served as Assistant Pastor at St. Denis Parish, Havertown, Pa, from 1941 to 1959; at St. John the Baptist Parish, Schaghticoke, N. Y., from 1959 to 1961, and St. Joseph Parish, Greenwich, N. Y. from 1961 to 1962.
In 1962 he was affiliated to the Province of Our Mother of Good Counsel, and was assigned as Assistant Pastor at St. Augustine Church, Detroit, Michigan. He served as prior at Augustinian Academy, St. Louis, Missouri in 1964 and 1965, and as prior at Tolentine College, Olympia Fields, Illinois, for a short time in 1965. In that year he was elected Econome General of the Order, and served in that office until 1967, when he tendered his resignation. Upon his return from Rome, Father Reilly served briefly as Pastor of St. Gregory Parish, Galt/Cambridge, Ontario, Canada. In 1968 he was named prior of the Augustinian Provincialate, Evanston, Illinois. Later in 1968 he was transferred to St. Clare of Montefalco Catholic Parish, Grosse Pointe Park, MI., where he was prior until 1971. He remained there until 1972, when he retired to St. Thomas of Villanova Monastery, Villanova. He died there June 4, 1981.
Father Reilly was a friendly and pastoral man. He is buried in the Augustinian plot at Calvary Cemetery, West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania.