Memorial Mass for Fogarty to be held on Monday
Father Austin Fogarty, former pastor of St. George Catholic Parish in Newnan, died Wednesday, Jan. 15, as a result of severe lung disease.
He was 61. Father Austin was born in Ireland in 1952 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1981 in Dublin, Ireland, by Atlanta Archbishop Thomas A. Donnellan for service to the Atlanta Archdiocese.
In addition to his 10-year term as pastor of St. George from 2002-2012, he previously served as pastor for Christ Our Hope Parish in Lithonia, and his assignment — at the time of his death — was as pastor of St. Thomas Aquinas in Alpharetta.
Father Austin spent his year of diaconal service in 1980, the year before he was ordained priest, at St. Michael Parish in Gainesville. After priestly ordination, he served four other Atlanta-area parishes as parochial vicar, before his first assignment as pastor.
In the Newnan parish, he was involved in the remodeling of the church building and the institution of weekly adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Part of his service to the community-at-large was his ministry to the imprisoned. He sought to bring peace and hope, as well as faith in God, to prisoners in different venues.
In 2011, in a recorded TV interview with Russ Spencer of Channel 5 Atlanta, he discussed his weekly visits to the Georgia State Prison at Jackson and the difficult challenges of reaching out to prisoners on death row.
Father Austin's Funeral Mass was celebrated Thursday morning, Jan. 23 at St. Thomas Aquinas in Alpharetta, followed by the Rite of Committal at Arlington Cemetery in Sandy Springs. Primary celebrant of the Funeral Mass was Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory, with many priests of the Atlanta Archdiocese concelebrating.
A Memorial Mass will be offered by Father Henry Atem, current pastor at St. George Parish in Newnan, on Monday at 7 p.m. All friends and acquaintances are welcome to attend.
Father Austin is survived by family members in Ireland, many of whom traveled to this country for the funeral. He is remembered warmly by his brother priests and the many friends he made here.
In the Catholic tradition, there is a favored prayer which may be offered for Father Austin: "Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May his soul, and all the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen."