PROVIDENCE — Reverend Cornelius (Neil) B. Lynch, 89, Senior Priest of the Diocese of Providence, died Monday, September 25, 2017. Born in Providence, son of the late William J. and Anna S. (Collins) Lynch, he attended St. Joseph School and St. Raphael Academy in Pawtucket.
In preparation for the priesthood, he studied at Our Lady of Providence Seminary in Warwick and at the Grand Seminaire in St. Brieuc, France. He was ordained to the priesthood on June 12, 1954 in the Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul in Providence by the Most Reverend Russell J. McVinney.
Father Lynch served as assistant pastor at the Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul, Providence (1954-60) and at Blessed Sacrament Parish, Providence (1960-62). From 1962-71, he was granted permission to provide pastoral ministry in Peru and Brazil. After his return to the Diocese, Father served as assistant pastor at St. Anthony Parish, Providence (1971-72); Sacred Heart Parish, Pawtucket (1972-78); and Sacred Heart Parish, East Providence (1978-79). In 1979, Father Lynch was appointed pastor of St. Maria Goretti Parish, Pawtucket, where he served until 1993.
From 1993-98, he returned to South America to provide pastoral assistance. In 1998, Father Lynch retired as a Senior Priest of the Diocese, and assisted at local parishes. Father also provided ministry at the Department of Corrections and was a volunteer at Hope Hospice & Palliative Care Rhode Island. During retirement, Father Lynch resided in Pawtucket. In his final weeks, Father lived at St. John Vianney Residence, Providence.
A Concelebrated Mass of Christian Burial for the repose of his soul was offered on September 30 at St. Raymond Church, Providence, with Rev. Edward Pieroni, pastor, as the principal celebrant and Rev. Richard Maynard, serving as the homilist. Bishops Louis E. Gelineau and Francis X. Roque and other priests concelebrated the funeral Mass.
Burial was at Mount St. Mary Cemetery, Pawtucket.