Father Thomas J. McInerney is a devoted and zealous young priest of the Catholic Church, and most of his work had been done in the State of Kansas. he is now pastor of St. Monica’s Catholic Church at Waterville.
This church was established in 1909 by Father Redeker. Its first pastor was Father Elast. The parish extends to the west line of Marshall County, to Blue Rapids on the east, to College Hill on the south, and adjoins Marysville parish on the north, It contains about twenty-three Catholic families, with about seventy members.
Father McInerney was born in County Clare, Ireland, January 14, 1887. He secured his preliminary education in a national school at Barefield in that county, and took a Latin and Greek classical course in St. Flannan’s College at Ennis in the same county. At the age of twenty-two be came to the United States and on September 7, 1909, arrived in Kansas City, Missouri, and two weeks later entered St. Francis Seminary at Milwaukee, Wisconsin. There he pursued the philosophic course two years, following which he spent three years in Kenrick Seminary at St. Louis. He was graduated from the latter institution and ordained June 12, 1913.
Father McInerney said his first mass at St. Mary’s Academy June 15, 1913. He then served as assistant pastor for four months at St. Thomas’ Church in Armourdale, Kansas, where his brother, Rev. T. J. McInerney was then pastor. He was next appointed assistant to Father Hayden at Topeka, and after Father Hayden’s resignation in July, 1914, he served as acting pastor of the Assumption parish four months. He continued these duties until his brother was installed as the regular pastor. His next work was as assistant to Father Kelly in the Cathedral at Leavenworth for eight months, and he was the regular pastor at Horanif, Kansas, nine months, and on April 7, 1916, was installed as pastor of St. Monica’s Church at Waterville. Father McInerney had distinguished himself by successful organizing and administrative work as well as spiritual leadership, and had done much to build up his present parish.
He is one of a large family, a number of whom have accepted the call to church duty. His father, Patrick McInerney, was born in County Clare, Ireland, in 1850, spent his life as a farmer and died in that county in 1895. His wife was Bridget Purcell, who was born in County Clare in 1856, and died there in 1899. The oldest of their children is Father Patrick J. McInerney, now pastor of the Assumption Church at Topeka. Mary, the next in age, is Sister Mida in the Holy Name Church at Sheridan, Wyoming. Martin still lives in Ireland, a farmer. Ella married John Clune, a foreman for an implement house at Kansas City, Kansas. John is a street railway conductor in Kansas City, Missouri. Delia is Sister Mary Etna in a convent at Butte, Montana. The seventh in the family is Father Thomas. Peter is foreman in an implement house at Kansas City, Missouri. Catherine is Sister Mary Patrick in the Academy at Helens, Montana. Elizabeth is Sister Mary Patrick in St. Mary’s School at Butte, Montana. Frances, the eleventh and youngest of the family, is now finishing her course in an academy in county Limerick, Ireland.