The Bishop of Middlesbrough will be the chief celebrant at the funeral of a “faithful” priest who served parishes in Hessle, Middlesbrough, Market Weighton and Brotton.
Father Michael Murray died peacefully in hospital in his hometown, Carlisle, on Tuesday March 10 at 1.40am. He was 83.
Before he passed away, Father Michael gave a blessing from his hospital bed to his family, including his twin sister, Ann Marie Douglas.
Father Michael was born in Carlisle on January 30 1932 and became a brother of the Hospitaller Order of St John of God before training for the priesthood at St Edmond’s Seminary in Ware, Hertfordshire.
He was ordained on October 4 1975 and served as curate at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Hessle from 1975 to 1978 and St Francis in Acklam, Middlesbrough, from 1978 to 1984.
From 1984 to 1994 he was Parish Priest at Our Lady of Perpetual Succour in Market Weighton and from 1994 to 1997 at St Anthony’s, Brotton.
He then retired to Carlisle, living opposite his twin sister and continuing to supply in and around the town until he was no longer able to.
“In recent years his health has been failing and in many ways one could describe this as a long Calvary,” said the Vicar General of the Diocese of Middlesbrough, Very Reverend Monsignor Canon Gerard Robinson.
“After a recent fall, Father Michael was taken to hospital, where he underwent a major operation. He regained consciousness and continued to pray the Rosary and died peacefully on Tuesday morning.
“We give thanks for the courteous, humble and kind way Father Michael was a priest and give gratitude for the years that he served our Diocese so faithfully.”
Father Michael will be received into Christ the King, Harraby, on Wednesday March 25 at 7pm. His funeral Mass will take place on Thursday March 26 at 11.30am. He will then be taken to the cemetery, where there will be a woodland burial.
The Bishop of Middlesbrough, the Right Reverend Terence Patrick Drainey, will travel to Carlisle to be the chief celebrant.