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Archives Four priests observe 50 years of priesthood

May 31, 2017

Four priests are celebrating their 50th anniversary of ordination to the priesthood, three diocesan priests and one Missionary of the Sacred Heart. Their profiles follow:

Father Comstock
Father Douglas G. Comstock has been pastor of the Catholic Community of Alexandria, which includes St. Cyril of Alexandria Church in Alexandria Bay and St. Francis Xavier Church in Redwood, since 2008. He is a native of Alexandria Bay, born May 29, 1941

Father Comstock attended Alexandria Central School Wadhams Hall Seminary, Ogdensburg, before receiving a bachelor of arts degree from St. Mary's Seminary and University in Baltimore, Md. He furthered his studies at the American College of the Immaculate Conception at the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium, where he received BA, MA and STG degrees.

He was ordained a priest in Louvain on June 24, 1967.

Since his ordination he has served as an assistant pastor at St. Mary's Cathedral in Ogdensburg, as secretary to Bishop Stanislaus Brzana and as assistant chancellor of the Diocese of Ogdensburg. From 1971-79 he was on the faculty of Wadhams Hall Seminary College.

In 1979, he returned to the American College in Louvain where he was director of spiritual formation until 1982, when he began serving as vice rector until 1984.

Returning to this country in 1984, Father Comstock became pastor of Immaculate Conception Church, Brownville, and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church, Dexter, where he served until 1986, when he was appointed pastor of St. Bernard Church, Saranac Lake.

In 1993, he became pastor of St. Andrew Church, Sackets Harbor, and Queen of Heaven Church, Henderson until his current appointment in Alexandria Bay..

Within the Diocese of Ogdensburg, he was founding chairperson of the Department of Worship, a member of the Council of Priests, the College of Consultors, the Priests' Personnel Board and the board of Catholic Charities. He was a member of the board of trustees of Mater Dei College, Ogdensburg for seven years, serving as president for two years.

Father Comstock will be honored June 14 as Citizen of the Year by the Alexandria Bay Chamber of Commerce.

Father Manfred
Father Manfred, pastor in Croghan and Harrisville, for the past year, had served as pastor of Sacred Heart in Massena since 1998 and pastor of St. Lawrence in Louisville since 2002.  In 2011, the two parishes were merged and he served as pastor of the Church of Sacred Heart and St Lawrence.

Born Dec. 12, 1940, in Somerville, Mass., Father Manfred grew up in the Potsdam area.  He began studies for the priesthood at Wadhams Hall Seminary and also studied at Christ the King Seminary in Olean, N.Y., and received a master’s degree in history from Potsdam State University.  He was ordained May 20, 1967 at St. Mary’s Cathedral by Bishop Thomas Donnellan.

Father Manfred served as an assistant pastor at St. Patrick’s in Watertown and at St. Alphonsus in Tupper Lake.
In 1971, he was appointed executive director of the Bishop’s Fund.  A year later he was named assistant chancellor with additional responsibilities for the lay retirement fund. 

In November, 1972, Father Manfred was named assistant pastor of St. Patrick’s in Watertown.  He has also served as administrator in Dannemora and pastor in North Lawrence and at St. Alphonsus in Tupper Lake before moving to Massena.

The priest was appointed director of the newly formed permanent deacon formation program in 1976 and served in that position until 1985.  He has also served the diocese as director of deacon personnel and continuing formation, as a member of the Catholic Charities Board of Trustees and dean of St. Lawrence Deanery.

Father Shurtleff
Father Shurtleff, pastor emeritus of Notre Dame Church in Ogdensburg was pastor of Notre Dame from 1999 until his retirement in 2016.

He currently resides at St. Mary’s Cathedral and offers pastoral care throughout the Ogdensburg area.

Father Shurtleff was born in Ogdensburg March 11, 1941, and studied for the priesthood at Wadhams Hall Seminary College, Christ the King Seminary in Olean, N. Y. and the North American College in Rome, Italy. 
He was ordained Dec. 17, 1966, at St. Peter’s Basilica by Bishop Francis F. Reh.

Father Shurtleff has served as assistant pastor in Brownville, Holy Family in Watertown and Sacred Heart in Massena.  He was the bishop’s secretary and assistant chancellor from 1972 to 1981 when he was named pastor in Colton.

In 1987, Father Shurtleff became pastor in Brasher Falls and one year later was given added responsibilities as pastor in Hogansburg.

In 1992 he became pastor at St. Joseph’s in Malone, a position he held until his current assignment at Notre Dame. Father Shurtleff also served the diocese as Director of the Department of Worship.

Father DeLuca
Born May 16, 1939, in Ravenna, Ohio, Father David made his first vows as a Missionary of the Sacred Sept. 13, 1960, Youngstown, Ohio.

He was ordained to the priesthood Dec. 17, 1966, by Bishop Geo. Rehring, D.D., Most Pure Heart of Mary, Shelby, Ohio.

Father  David accepted an appointment to serve as a missionary in Papua New Guinea. Except for periodic leave for vacations, he kept to his missionary apostolate from Dec. 18, 1967 to June 1998—just short of 31 years.

On returning permanently to the United States, Father  David took up studies (1999-2001) at the Chicago Theological Union towards a graduate degree in cross cultural studies with a minor in liturgy. He was posted to the Sacred Heart Retreat and Renewal Center in Youngstown, Ohio, in 2001-2003, went back to CTU for his comprehensives in 2003 and was awarded an MA in theology.

From August 2003-2008 he taught theology at Allentown Central Catholic and for much of that time also served as a chaplain to the student body.

In 2009 he was assigned to the MSC community in Watertown, to be available for pastoral ministry as needed by pastors in the Diocese of Ogdensburg except when on call for mission appeals and other commitments carried forward from previous assignments.

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