Scottsdale, hospice communities mourn loss of beloved priest

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St. Patrick parishioners and countless families who have been served by Hospice of the Valley are mourning the loss of Fr. Brian Fenlon.

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Fr. Brian Fenlon (1940-2016) Fr. Brian Fenlon (1940-2016)

Fr. Brian Fenlon

Born: Aug. 15, 1940

Ordained: May 31, 1975

Service in the Diocese of Phoenix:

Ss. Simon and Jude Cathedral, St. Joseph Parish, Christ the King Parish in Mesa and founding pastor of St. Patrick Parish in Scottsdale.

Died: May 10, 2016

Funeral: 6:30 p.m. May 15 Visitation and scripture service, 11 a.m. May 16 Mass of Resurrection at St. Patrick Parish, 10815 N. 84th St. in Scottsdale

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The founding pastor of the Scottsdale parish west of Loop 101 and Shea Blvd. and hospice chaplain passed away May 10. He was 75.

Fr. Fenlon was ordained for the Diocese of Phoenix in 1975 and spent most of his active priesthood at St. Patrick, which was established five years later. He retired in 1995.

St. Patrick was the first diocesan parish designed post-Vatican II. Fr. Fenlon, who entered the priesthood after a career as an architect, helped design the parish, as did founding parishioners. The result: an altar in the center of the assembly of a church that opened in 1985.

The current worship space, which opened in 2002, has a similar communal feel. Six years later, the parish’s multi-use building was remodeled and rededicated as the Fenlon Hospitality Center.

Fr. Fenlon spent his retirement serving a fruitful ministry as chaplain with Hospice of the Valley for more than 15 years.

“I will remember his bright smile and infectious laugh, his boyish jovial character and his commitment to the Catholic Church. His devotion to his religious vocation was estimable,” Dave Wilsterman, a fellow Hospice of the Valley chaplain, said in a statement.

Fr. Fenlon was born Aug. 15, 1940 and graduated from Loretto Catholic Central High School in Michigan. He was ordained May 31, 1975 for the Diocese of Phoenix. His priestly service also included Ss. Simon and Jude Cathedral, St. Joseph Parish and Christ the King in Mesa. He also reportedly served faithfully at Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish in Guadalupe for many years.

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