Father Riley was professor, pastor

| December 1, 2015 | 0 Comments

Father John F. Riley was both university professor and pastor — for a number of years both at the same time — during the 60 years of his priesthood.

He died Nov. 21 at 87.

Born Nov. 8, 1928, he attended the seminaries of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and was ordained May 30, 1955.

Father Riley served as an associate pastor at St. Joan of Arc in Minneapolis for two years before beginning a lengthy teaching career.

He taught theology at the then-College of St. Thomas from 1957 to 1969, chairing the department from 1967-69.

He became an associate professor at Augsburg College in Minneapolis for three years before returning to St. Thomas, where he was awarded tenure in 1983. It was during those years — 1972-80 — that he also served as pastor at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Minneapolis.

He taught theology at St. Thomas until his retirement in 1993.

A funeral Mass was celebrated for Father Riley Nov. 28 at Lumen Christi in St. Paul. Interment is in Calvary Cemetery in Rock Island, Illinois.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Michael and Marjorie, a brother, Michael Jr., and sister Mary Alice Riley. He is survived by his brother Robert and several nieces and nephews.

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Category: Obituaries