SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The Diocese of Scranton announced Saturday that Bishop John Doughtery passed away, this Easter weekend.

According to a press release, the Diocese of Scranton announced Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus John Dougherty died Saturday at his family’s home in Scranton.

Dougherty was ordained a priest in 1957 and later served as Auxiliary Bishop from 1995 to 2009, the year he retired, as Pope Benedict XVI accepted his resignation two years after reaching the mandatory retirement age.

Bishop Dougherty began his service in Tobyhanna, as an Assistant Pastor of Saint Ann Parish, where he served the community for more than seven years, in preparation for the opening of St. Pius X Seminary, in Dalton, where he was later named Professor of Ascetical Theology by Bishop Hannan.

Bishop Dougherty also served as a pastor at churches that include Saint Patrick, Holy cross, Saint John the Baptist, and Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Pope John Paul II, named Bishop Doughtery the titular Bishop of Sufetula and Auxiliary to the Bishop of Scranton as well.

The Diocese of Scranton says, Bishop Dougherty continued his service as a member of the council of priests and board of consultors between 2005 and 2010. Once he retired and became Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus, Bishop Dougherty served at Christ the King Parish in Archbald before Bishop Bambera asked him to serve as Administrator, pro tem, at Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary Parish in Jermyn in 2019.

Bishop Joseph Bambera says Dougherty’s death brings to a close a rare example of priestly ministry that lasted 65 years.

“Bishop Dougherty was a real gem, a wonderful man, a man with great care and compassion. A man who could be very funny, who could really put life in perspective, and who truly served with every fiber of his being,” said Bishop Joseph Bambera. “Above all else, Bishop Dougherty was a good and faithful priest who served God and the people give to his care with every fiber of his being.”

Bishop Dougherty was also a member of the American Catholic Historical Association and was elected to serve on its board of trustees.

Details of the funeral arrangements have not been announced. The Most Reverend John Dougherty was 89-years-old.