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In Memory of Father William Francis Moroney M.Afr.

Bill moroney's furneral

Father William Francis Moroney M. Afr. (1935-2024) passed away peacefully at home on February 17, 2024, in Nairobi, Kenya.

A Chicago native, Father Moroney commenced his priestly journey with the Archdiocese of Chicago at Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary and St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, Illinois, before entering the Society of Missionaries of Africa in 1958. His priestly formation took him to Alexandria Bay, New York, and Carthage, Tunisia, culminating in his ordination in 1961.

Post-ordination, he pursued further studies in sociology at Loyola University in Chicago before embarking on a dedicated service as a teacher and pastor in Tanzania. Between 1972 and 1976, he returned to Chicago to serve as the community superior of the Missionaries of Africa in Chicago. In 1977, he returned to Tanzania, contributing seventeen years to ministry, including serving as the regional provincial of East Africa. In 1994, he was elected superior of the Missionaries of Africa in the USA and played a crucial role in the merging of the USA and Canadian provinces into the North American Province. Following service in France from 2000 to 2006, he returned to East Africa, continuing his impactful roles in pastoral, provincial, and formational leadership.

Father Moroney’s influence on his fellow Missionaries of Africa was profound. Peers admired his steadfast leadership in provincial offices in both the USA and East Africa. Younger members fondly remember him as a compassionate formator both in France and Kenya during their journey to priesthood, appreciating his quiet but friendly demeanor that fostered trust. His natural instinct to support fellow missionaries, dating back to his time as a novice, led to leadership roles throughout his life.

Given the love Father Moroney harbored for people of Africa it wasn’t always easy for him to accept assignments in the USA, yet he consistently answered the call to return home when needed. Unsurprisingly, upon retirement in 2023, he chose to spend his remaining years in East Africa.

Born to James and Agnes Moroney, he is survived by his sister, Marilyn (Moroney) Ginnane, and her family. Funeral services were held on February 21, 2024, in Nairobi.

Donations to the Missionaries of Africa in Father Moroney’s memory will be utilized to support projects in East Africa. Contributions can be made here or by mail to Missionaries of Africa, 1622 21st Street NW, Washington, DC 20009.


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