Pastor Emeritus of Immaculate Conception Church, Somerville
Reverend Monsignor John Nevin Kennedy, former Pastor and currently Pastor Emeritus of Immaculate Conception Church, Somerville, entered into eternal rest on Saturday June 27,2015.
He was the son of the late John and Marie Kennedy. He was preceded in death by his sister, Marie Adele Kennedy and sister in law, Elizabeth "Pete" Kennedy.
He is survived by his sister, Carol Dawe of Savannah,GA, brother Paul B. Kennedy of Camp Hill, PA, eight nieces and nephews: Kim Kennedy-Navarro, Peter N. Dawe, John N. Kennedy, Terri Dawe, Paul Kennedy, Laura Dawe-Wiley, Joseph Dawe and Michele Kennedy Bartolucci. Along with 14 Great nieces and nephews. His family fondly remembers many times when he served mass in their homes allowing all to be active participants in the celebration of Jesus.
He was ordained as a priest in 1958 at St. Anthony Church, Trenton, NJ. His first assignment as a priest was as an Associate Pastor of Immaculate Conception Church in Somerville, NJ. He went on to serve the Dioceses of Metuchen and Trenton, as Associate Pastor at the parishes of Holy Spirit, Perth Amboy; St. Raphael, Trenton; Star of the Sea, Long Branch and then Pastor at the parishes of St. Mathias, Somerset; Blessed Sacrament, Martinsville; and then In 1985 to Immaculate Conception Church as Pastor until his retirement in 2002.
In 1996, he was named a Prelate of Honor, with the title of Reverend Monsignor, by Pope John Paul II.
He had a keen focus on children whom he saw as the future of the church and was a strong supporter of the Catholic Youth Organization.
He was very involved in the Right to Life Movement so much so that he established Great Expectations, a home for unwed mothers.
Msgr Kennedy was very instrumental in having people of all religious faiths unite on various community causes.After celebrating mass on Sundays, he could be found watching golf and his favorite football team, The Philadelphia Eagles.
He had a great devotion to the Blessed Mother and credited her intercession as being responsible for his vocation to the priesthood.
Reflecting on the sacramental life of a priest, Msgr. Kennedy explained the nature of his vocation, "There is one reason I am a priest, and that is to change bread and wine into Jesus Christ". Throughout his 50 years of service to the Lord and the Church Community, he touched many lives.
Visiting hours from 3:30pm to 7pm on Wednesday, July 1, at the Immaculate Conception Church, 35 Mountain Ave., Somerville and conclude with a Mass of Commemoration on Wednesday evening at 7:30pm.
Visitation will also occur from 9:30am to 10:30am on Thursday, July 2, and conclude with a Mass of Christian Burial at 11am at the church. Interment to follow at the Immaculate Conception Cemetery, Union Ave., (Route 28), Somerville.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Center for Great Expectations, 19B Dellwood Lane, Somerset, NJ 08873.