Brady, Matthew Francis

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Bishop and educator; b. Waterbury, Conn., Jan. 15, 1893; d. Burlington, Vt., Sept. 20, 1959. He was the son of John and Catherine (Caffrey) Brady. After early education in the public schools of Waterbury, he attended St. Thomas Seminary, Bloomfield, Conn.; the American College, Louvain, Belgium; and St. Bernard Seminary, Rochester, N.Y. He was ordained in Hartford, Conn., on June 10, 1916, and served as assistant pastor at Sacred Heart, New Haven, until 1922, except for eight months as U.S. Army chaplain during World War I. From 1922 to 1932 he taught English, French, and Sacred Scripture at St. Thomas Seminary, Bloomfield, returning then to pastoral work at St. Rita's, Hamden. In 1934 he was appointed to the archdiocesan staff of Hartford, where, as director of the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD), he organized the Fourth National Catechetical Congress, held in Hartford in October of 1938.

Appointed bishop of Burlington on July 30, 1938, he was consecrated in his cathedral on October 26 by Abp. Amleto Cicognani, then U.S. apostolic delegate. In Burlington, Brady established the CCD, a diocesan school department, a bureau of information, the Catholic Boy Scouts, and the Junior Catholic Daughters of America. He gave strong leadership to Catholic Charities and was host to the First New England Regional Congress of the CCD, which was held in Burlington. During World War II he established centers for servicemen and women. On Nov. 11, 1944, Brady was transferred to the See of Manchester, N.H., as fifth ordinary. Besides founding Catholic Charities (1946) and a diocesan labor institute, he established 30 parishes, built 47 churches, 11 grammar schools, 5 high schools, 3 homes for the aged, 2 large summer camps, 11 convents, 29 rectories, and 18 parish halls.

On the national level, Brady served as episcopal chairman of the department of education, National Catholic Welfare Conference (195056), and president general of the National Catholic Educational Association (195758). In 1945 he became a member of the episcopal committee of the CCD, and at the death of Abp. E. V. O'Hara, replaced him as its chairman (October 1956), an office Brady held until his own death three years later.

[w. h. paradis]