1903 – 1970 (November 24)
William Joseph Lunney, son of William Lunney and Bridget Carson, was born on February 21, 1903, in Philadelphia and attended Saint Francis of Assisi Parochial and High School, Germantown. He entered the novitiate in 1925 and made simple profession of vows on January 5, 1926. He graduated from Villanova College in 1928 and was ent to Germany for theological studies. There he was solemnly professed on January 5, 1929, and received his degree at the University of Wurzburg, Germany in 1932. He was ordained to the priesthood on July 25, 1931 by Matthias Ehrenfield, bishop of Wurzburg in Saint Michael’s Seminary Chapel there.
Father Lunney was on the faculty of Villanova University from 1932 to 1957. He then was assigned, in 1957, as assistant pastor at Saint Genevieve Church, Flourtown, Pa. The following year he was sent to Saint Mary's Church, Waterford, N.Y., and in 1959 to Our Mother of Consolation Church, Chestnut Hill, Pa. where he remained until 1962. Because of delicate health he was assigned to Resurrection of Our Lord Church, Dania, Fl., but returned to Villanova in 1964. That same year his weakened condition recommended that he be assigned again to Florica, this time at Our Lady of the Angels Church, Jacksonville. In 1968 he was appointed to Immaculate Conception Church, Hoosick Falls, N.Y., and the following year to Saint Augustine's Church, Philadelphia.
Father Lunney died on Tuesday, November 24, 1970 at Saint Joseph Hospital. A Requiem Mass was celebrated at Saint Mary’s Hall, Villanova, after which he was buried in the community cemetery at Saint Mary’s. Later his body was moved with that of other friars to Calvary Cemetery, West Conshohocken.
Father Joseph Grifferty was the homilist at the Funeral Mass and described his childhood neighbor, whose favorite diversions were always photography and fishing, as kind and thoughful, of a genuine warm nature.