Father Kenneth was born Harold Gerard Walsh, on Dec. 9, 1922, son of the late Hugh and Marie McAvenia Walsh in Revere, Mass. He was educated in the public schools of Scituate, Mass. He entered the Passionist preparatory high school in Dunkirk, N.Y., in 1939. He professed his vows as a Passionist on Aug. 15, 1943, and was ordained on June 3, 1950, by Bishop Thomas Molloy, bishop of Brooklyn, N.Y. Father Kenneth spent his entire priestly ministry in Passionist parishes. He served as a parochial vicar at St. Gabriel’s parish in Brighton, Mass.; St. Michael’s, Union City, N.J.; St. Patrick’s, Mexico City, Mexico; St. Joseph’s, Baltimore; and St. Ann’s, Scranton, on two occasions, one in the early 1970s and from 2000 to 2004. He was pastor of St. Michael’s, Union City, N.J.; St. Patrick’s, Mexico City; and St. Peter’s in Greenville, N.C. Father Kenneth was very proud of his many years serving in Passionist parishes, especially at St. Ann’s, where he was most fulfilled in caring for the sick and homebound. Father Kenneth spent these last years ministering to the many people who came to St. Ann’s Shrine Basilica for the Monday novena, the Solemn Novena in July and for the sacrament of reconciliation as well as celebrating Mass at various parishes in the Scranton Diocese.
He is survived by several nieces and nephews, especially his niece, Mary Hughes, who spent the last two weeks with Father Kenneth during his final days, and his niece, Ellen Sullivan, with whom he enjoyed many family visits. Father Kenneth was also preceded in death by a sister, Virginia Walsh Rice; and two brothers, Hugh and Jerome.
Father Kenneth’s body will be received at St. Ann’s Shrine Basilica on Tuesday at 2 p.m. His body will lie in repose for viewing until 7:30, followed by a wake service by the Very Rev. James Price, C.P., rector of St. Ann’s. Viewing will also take place Wednesday, from 9 to 10 a.m.
The funeral Mass will be at St. Ann’s on Wednesday at 10:30, celebrated by the Very. Rev. Robert Joerger, C.P., provincial. Burial, St. Ann’s Monastery Cemetery. Funeral arrangements by the Thomas J. Hughes Funeral Home Inc., 1240 St. Ann’s St., Scranton. Memorial contributions may be made to St. Ann’s Shrine Basilica, 1233 St. Ann’s St., Scranton, PA 18504.