Retired Bishop George Murry dies after two-year battle with leukemia

Retired Bishop George Murry dies after two-year battle with leukemia

Bishop George V. Murry of Youngstown, Ohio, is seen in St. Louis in this 2017 file photo. Murry, who submitted his resignation to Pope Francis for health reasons May 26, 2020, died June 5 at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital in New York. (Credit: Lisa Johnston/St. Louis Review via CNS.)

Bishop George V. Murry, the fifth bishop of the Diocese of Youngstown, died June 5 at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital in New York, after a two-year battle with leukemia, the diocese announced. He was 71.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Bishop George V. Murry, the fifth bishop of the Diocese of Youngstown, died June 5 at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital in New York, after a two-year battle with leukemia, the diocese announced. He was 71.

Murry had been admitted to Sloan Kettering for in-patient treatment May 30, a few days after submitting a letter of resignation to Pope Francis.

The bishop, who was receiving treatment for his illness from St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital and the Cleveland Clinic, cited his limited stamina and the advice of his physicians for his decision to resign.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

Murry was appointed to the Diocese of Youngstown in 2007. During his tenure, he served in other capacities with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, including chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism, the Committee for Religious Liberty and the Committee on Catholic Education. He also served as chairman of the board of the National Catholic Educational Association.

He also was appointed in 2015 to serve on the Synod of Bishops on the Family in Rome. That same year, then-Ohio Gov. John Kasich named Murry to the Ohio Task Force on Community-Police Relations.

Born in Camden, New Jersey, Dec. 28, 1948, to Viola and George Vance Murry II, he was baptized into the African Methodist Episcopal Church. He attended Camden public schools but later transferred to St. Bartholomew School in Camden, where he embraced Catholicism. He advanced to Camden Catholic High School.

He progressed to St. Joseph’s College in Philadelphia, St. Thomas Seminary in Bloomfield, Connecticut, and St. Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore, where he received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy in 1972.

That same year, he entered the Society of Jesus. He was ordained for the Maryland province of the Jesuits June 9, 1979.

He earned a master of divinity degree from the Jesuit School of Theology and a doctorate in American cultural history from George Washington University in Washington in 1994.

Murry served on the faculty and was dean of student activities at Gonzaga College High School in Washington from 1974 to 1976. He was became an assistant professor of American studies at Georgetown University in 1986, where he taught until 1990.

He was appointed president of Archbishop Carroll High School in Washington, serving from 1989 to 1994, and then was named associate vice president for academic affairs at the University of Detroit Mercy.

On Jan. 24, 1995, St. John Paul II named him an auxiliary bishop of Chicago, and his episcopal ordination was March 20, 1995.

On May 5, 1998, Pope John Paul appointed him coadjutor bishop with the right of succession of St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands. Murry became bishop of the diocese June 30, 1999 and served there until his appointment to Youngstown.

Sheehan is editor and general manager of The Catholic Exponent, newspaper of the Diocese of Youngstown.

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