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Former St. Michael pastor Thomas Kenny dies
Thomas Kenny

Monsignor Thomas Kenny, who led in the construction of the St. Michael Catholic Church building on Pearce Circle, has died. He was 69.

Kenny was pastor of Cathedral of Christ the King in Atlanta when he died Thursday.

The church’s Web site says that Kenny, a native of Ireland, "died peacefully and mercifully in his sleep, passing on to his eternal reward."

Diane Stow of Gainesville said St. Michael sent out an e-mail announcing Kenny’s death.

"It made me really sad," she said.

Kenny came to Atlanta in 1965 as a newly ordained priest and after a short stint at Christ the King, served in parishes throughout the archdiocese, including St. Michael, before returning to Christ the King as rector in 1990, according to Christ the King.

He was at St. Michael in the 1970s. The parish, which had outgrown its original church, began construction on a new building when it was struck by a tornado, according to St. Michael’s Web site.

Kenny, returning from a family funeral in Ireland, arrived to find the devastation.

"Undaunted, he and the parishioners pressed on with the project, bringing construction to a successful conclusion," according to the Web site.

"He was such a kind, generous man," Stow said. "He was a wonderful parish priest."

Funeral Mass is set for 10:30 a.m. Thursday at Christ the King. The burial service will take place afterward at Arlington Cemetery in Atlanta.