For faster navigation, this Iframe is preloading the Wikiwand page for John Murphy Farley.

John Murphy Farley

His Eminence

John Murphy Farley
Cardinal Archbishop of New York
SeeNew York
AppointedSeptember 15, 1902
Term endedSeptember 17, 1918
PredecessorMichael Corrigan
SuccessorPatrick Joseph Hayes
Other post(s)Cardinal-Priest of S. Maria sopra Minerva
OrdinationJune 11, 1870
by Costantino Patrizi Naro
ConsecrationDecember 21, 1895
by Michael Corrigan
Created cardinalNovember 27, 1911
by Pius X
Personal details
Born(1842-04-20)April 20, 1842
DiedSeptember 17, 1918(1918-09-17) (aged 76)
Mamaroneck, New York, United States
BuriedSt. Patrick's Cathedral, New York
Previous post(s)
MottoNon Nobis Domine
(Not Unto Us, O Lord)

John Murphy Farley (April 20, 1842 – September 17, 1918) was an Irish-American cardinal of the Catholic Church. He served as Archbishop of New York from 1902 until his death in 1918, and became a cardinal in 1911.

Early life and education

John Farley was born in Newtownhamilton, County Armagh, Ireland, to Catherine (née Murphy) and Philip Farrelly.[1] At age twelve, he was orphaned and went to live with his mother's family in the townland of Moyles.[2] He received his early education under the direction of a private tutor named Hugh McGuire.[3] He then attended St. Macartan's College in Monaghan from 1859 to 1864.[4]

Under the auspices of an uncle, Farley emigrated to the United States at the height of the Civil War in 1864. He immediately enrolled at St. John's College in New York City, graduating in 1865. He then began his studies for the priesthood at St. Joseph's Provincial Seminary in Troy.[5] In 1866, he was sent to continue his studies at the Pontifical North American College in Rome.[3] He was present in Rome during the whole period of the First Vatican Council.[6]


Farley was ordained a priest by Cardinal Costantino Patrizi Naro on June 11, 1870.[7] His first assignment, following his return to New York, was as a curate at St. Peter's Church (Staten Island), where he remained for two years.[8] Following the appointment of Francis McNeirny to the Diocese of Albany, in 1872 Farley became secretary to Archbishop John McCloskey,[6] whom he had earlier met while in Rome. It was about this time that he changed the spelling of his name from "Farrelly" to "Farley".[2] He accompanied McCloskey to the 1878 papal conclave, but they arrived after the election of Pope Leo XIII had already taken place.[1] Farley wrote the article on Cardinal McCloskey for the Catholic Encyclopedia.[9]

From 1884 to 1902, Farley served as pastor of St. Gabriel's Church in Manhattan.[3] During his tenure at St. Gabriel's, he freed the parish from debt, oversaw the consecration of the church, and built a parish hall. He was named a papal chamberlain in 1884 with the title of "monsignor", and raised to the rank of domestic prelate in 1892.[4] In addition to his pastoral duties at St. Gabriel's, Farley served as vicar general for the Archdiocese of New York from 1891 to 1902.[1] He also served as president of the Catholic school board, in which position he organized a Catholic school parade in 1892.[5] He later organized a Catholic school exhibit in 1894.[5] He became a protonotary apostolic in 1895.[4]

Episcopal career

Styles of
John Murphy Farley
Reference styleHis Eminence
Spoken styleYour Eminence
Informal styleCardinal
SeeNew York
Ordination history of
John Murphy Farley
Episcopal consecration
Consecrated byMichael Corrigan (New York)
DateDecember 21, 1895
Episcopal succession
Bishops consecrated by John Murphy Farley as principal consecrator
Charles H. ColtonAugust 24, 1903
Thomas CusackApril 25, 1904
Thomas Francis HickeyMay 24, 1905
John J. Collins, S.J.October 28, 1907
John GrimesMay 16, 1909
Joseph Henry ConroyMay 1, 1912
Patrick Joseph HayesSeptember 8, 1892

On November 18, 1895, Farley was appointed auxiliary bishop of New York and titular bishop of Zeugma in Syria by Leo XIII. He received his episcopal consecration on the following December 21 from Archbishop Michael Corrigan, with Bishops Charles Edward McDonnell and Henry Gabriels serving as co-consecrators, at St. Patrick's Cathedral.[7] Farley became Apostolic Administrator of the archdiocese upon the death of Archbishop Corrigan on May 5, 1902, and was himself named the fourth Archbishop of New York on September 15 of that year.[10] He was honored as an Assistant at the Pontifical Throne in 1905.

Pope Pius X created him Cardinal Priest of Santa Maria sopra Minerva in the consistory of November 27, 1911.[9] He was one of the cardinal electors who participated in the 1914 papal conclave, which selected Pope Benedict XV. Following the outbreak of World War I, Farley stated,

"As Catholics in America, we owe unswerving allegiance to the Government of America, and it is our sacred duty to answer with alacrity every demand our country makes upon our loyalty and devotion... I would that peace could come by arbitration and diplomacy. It seems, however, that no permanent peace can be hoped for except through the defeat of German arms in the field or the repudiation of the Prussian autocracy by the German people themselves. Criticism of the government irritates me. I consider it little short of treason."[11]

His dedication to victory in the war angered the Sinn Féin element of the New York clergy, who believed the Cardinal was bowing to anti-Irish bigots.

He made progress in Catholic education in the archdiocese the keynote of his tenure as Archbishop, and established nearly fifty new parochial schools within his first eight years; he also founded the Cathedral Preparatory Seminary.[10] He was known to take daily walks with one of his priests down Madison or Fifth Avenue, noting, "A man never collects his thoughts so well as when he walks alone or with a congenial spirit."

Farley died in Mamaroneck, at age 76.[8] He is buried in the crypt under the altar of St. Patrick's Cathedral.

Further reading

  • Thomas J. Shelley; "John Cardinal Farley and Modernism in New York" Church History, Vol. 61, 1992



  1. ^ a b c Miranda, Salvador. "FARLEY, John Murphy (1842–1918)". The Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church.
  2. ^ a b "John Murphy Farley (or Farrelly) (1842 – 1918)", Parish of Lower Creggan
  3. ^ a b c Fitch, Charles Elliott (1916). Encyclopedia of Biography of New York. The American Historical Society. pp. 25–26.
  4. ^ a b c "Archdiocese of New York". Catholic Encyclopedia.
  5. ^ a b c Thornton, Francis Beauchesne (1963). Our American Princes. New York, Putnam.
  6. ^ a b Walsh, James Joseph (1926). Our American Cardinals. D. Appleton and Company.
  7. ^ a b "John Murphy Cardinal Farley".
  8. ^ a b "Cardinal A Leader Of Loyal Americans". The New York Times. September 18, 1918.
  9. ^ a b The Catholic Encyclopedia and its Makers, New York, The Encyclopedia press, 1917, p. 55
  10. ^ a b "John Cardinal Farley", Hall of Honor, Fordham University.
  11. ^ "All City Mourns Cardinal Farley". The Evening World. September 18, 1918.
{{bottomLinkPreText}} {{bottomLinkText}}
John Murphy Farley
Listen to this article

This browser is not supported by Wikiwand :(
Wikiwand requires a browser with modern capabilities in order to provide you with the best reading experience.
Please download and use one of the following browsers:

This article was just edited, click to reload
This article has been deleted on Wikipedia (Why?)

Back to homepage

Please click Add in the dialog above
Please click Allow in the top-left corner,
then click Install Now in the dialog
Please click Open in the download dialog,
then click Install
Please click the "Downloads" icon in the Safari toolbar, open the first download in the list,
then click Install

Install Wikiwand

Install on Chrome Install on Firefox
Don't forget to rate us

Tell your friends about Wikiwand!

Gmail Facebook Twitter Link

Enjoying Wikiwand?

Tell your friends and spread the love:
Share on Gmail Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Buffer

Our magic isn't perfect

You can help our automatic cover photo selection by reporting an unsuitable photo.

This photo is visually disturbing This photo is not a good choice

Thank you for helping!

Your input will affect cover photo selection, along with input from other users.


Get ready for Wikiwand 2.0 🎉! the new version arrives on September 1st! Don't want to wait?