graduated from Malden Catholic High School in 1976, He was born and
raised in Malden MA which is just north of Boston. Upon completing a
degree in Journalism from Suffolk University in Boston in 1980, his
career plans unexpectedly changed. After a profound spiritual
experience while on retreat in 1980, he entered the Franciscan Order in
1981. He professed religious vows in1984, and was ordained to the
Priesthood in 1989 as a Franciscan
He spent his first
two years as a Franciscan Priest at a parish in Little Falls, NJ as a
Pastoral Assistant and Coordinator of Youth Ministry. In 1991, he
accepted a position on the Campus Ministry Team at St. Bonaventure
University where he worked for five years; three years as the Director
of Campus Ministry. In September of 1996, he joined the Franciscan in
“Ministry of the Word Team” and spent the next five years “on the
road” preaching parish missions and giving retreats to clergy, religious
and lay people.
In March of 2001,
seeking a life more deeply rooted in prayer, he transferred into the
Benedictine monastic community at Glastonbury Abbey in Hingham, MA.
There, he became Director of the Retreat Program until 2008.
In February of 2008,
he began parish ministry in the Diocese of Fall River, as part of a
discernment to leave the Benedictines, and become a diocesan priest.
During a five year trial period he ministered in several parishes and
was officially “incardinated” in the diocese on July 1, 2013.
Prior to his
assignment as Pastor of St. Joan of Arc, he spent three years as
Parochial Vicar at Our Lady of Victory Parish in Centerville, and nearly
three years as Administrator at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish in
Seekonk. He also ministered briefly at St. Michael’s Parish in Fall
River and St. Elizabeth Seton Parish in North Falmouth.
Fr. Kelleher has a
particular interest and has done some work in the area of male
spirituality and men’s issues.
His leisure interests
include exercise, sports and rock music, especially Christian Rock.