Bishop George V. Murry, the fifth bishop of the Diocese of Youngstown, died June 5 at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital in Manhattan, after a two-year battle with leukemia, the diocese said. He was 71.
Bishop Murry had been admitted to Sloan Kettering for in-patient treatment May 30, a few days after submitting a letter of resignation to Pope Francis. The bishop cited his limited stamina and the advice of his physicians for his decision to resign.
Funeral arrangements are pending.
Bishop Murry served as chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism for a time and often spoke of the need of the Church to more firmly address racism in its ranks and throughout society.
Bishop Murry was appointed to the Diocese of Youngstown in 2007. He also served the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops as chairman of the Committee on Priorities and Plans, the Committee for Religious Liberty and the Committee on Catholic Education. He also served as chairman of the board of the National Catholic Educational Association and was on the board of directors of Catholic Relief Services.
Bishop Murry was appointed in 2015 to serve on the Synod of Bishops on the Family in Rome. The same year, then-Ohio Gov. John Kasich named Bishop Murry to the Ohio Task Force on Community-Police Relations.
Born in Camden, N.J., he was baptized into the African Methodist Episcopal Church. He attended Camden public schools and later transferred to St. Bartholomew School in Camden, where he embraced Catholicism. He advanced to Camden Catholic High School.
He progressed to St. Joseph’s College in Philadelphia, St. Thomas Seminary in Bloomfield, Conn., and St. Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore, where he received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy.
That same year, in 1972, he entered the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). He was ordained for the Maryland province of the Jesuits in 1979.
He earned a master of divinity degree from the Jesuit School of Theology and a doctorate in American cultural history from George Washington University in Washington, D.C.
Bishop Murry served on the faculty and was dean of student activities at Gonzaga College High School in Washington, D.C., 1974-1976. He was an assistant professor of American studies at Georgetown University, 1986-1990.
He was appointed president of Archbishop Carroll High School in Washington, D.C., 1989-1994, and then was named associate vice president for academic affairs at the University of Detroit Mercy.
On Jan. 24, 1995, St. John Paul II named him an auxiliary bishop of Chicago, and his episcopal ordination was March 20, 1995.
St. John Paul appointed him coadjutor bishop with the right of succession of St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands in 1998. Bishop Murry served as bishop of ST. Thomas 1999-2007.—CNS