May 21, 2024 at 3:20 p.m.

Albany to dedicate street in honor of Father Doyle’s legacy

Ceremony will take place May 28 at the Parish of Mater Christi
Father Kenneth Doyle
Father Kenneth Doyle

The City of Albany will honor the life and legacy of the late-Father Kenneth J. Doyle by dedicating a portion of the street that surrounds the Parish of Mater Christi as Rev. Kenneth J. Doyle Way. The ceremony will take place Tuesday, May 28, at 11 a.m., on the corner of Hurst Avenue and Collins Place in Albany with a reception to follow on-site. The public is invited.

“Father Doyle gave so much of himself to our community as a beloved and humble pastor, theologian and advocate for those in need,” said Father Dan Quinn, the current pastor of Mater Christi Parish. “As pastor, he was a spiritual leader and friend. He was known for his intellect, infectious laugh and kindness. He made the parish a home where all were welcome and nourished in the Catholic faith.” 

On the day before the dedication, Mater Christi will offer a Mass at 11 a.m. on Memorial Day in memory of Father Doyle, who served 24 years as pastor of the parish, and in recognition of the holiday. A barbeque on the grounds of the parish will follow.

Father Doyle, the longtime editor of The Evangelist, grew up in Troy, graduated from Catholic Central High School in 1957, attended Mater Christi Seminary and received his degree in theology from Catholic University. Father Doyle was ordained to the priesthood on May 28, 1966, served as associate of Our Lady Help of Christians Church in Albany, and soon after began his long association with The Evangelist, working there as assistant editor and editor from 1967-81.

Father Doyle, who received a law degree from Albany Law School in 1978 and was admitted to the New York State Bar in 1979, spent three years in Rome as the bureau chief for Catholic News Service from 1981-84. In 1984, he was public affairs officer for the U.S. Catholic Conference.

In 1992, he became pastor of St. Catherine of Siena, which later became Mater Christi Church in Albany and retired in 2016. In 2000, he also began serving as Chancellor of Public Information for the Diocese of Albany. In retirement, he kept writing his “Question Box” column for Catholic News Service. Father Doyle died at the age of 82 on Oct. 28, 2022.

“Father Ken served the people of our Diocese and the Albany community in many ways throughout his productive life, a man of great skill and talent,” said Bishop Edward B. Scharfenberger at the time of his passing. “For most, however, he will be remembered as a pastor, with a kindly heart.”

Despite his trips around the world and all of his roles — chancellor, editor, educator and chaplain — Father Doyle longed to be pastor and minister to his flock.

“I have had a lot of very good experiences in the priesthood, but any priest I think who is a diocesan priest eventually wants to get back in a parish because the other stuff is exciting — traveling with the pope, being the media director for the bishops’ conference and all of that — but why you started out to be a priest is to help people in a parish,” Father Doyle told The Evangelist in an interview in 2020. “I was delighted to get back into a parish in 1992. The happiest I have ever been in my priesthood was all of my years at Mater Christi, working with people because that is why you did it to start with.”


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