Michael Leo Novacki, O.P.

Michael Leo Novacki, O.P.


Birth: September 26, 1907

Profession: August 16, 1929

Ordination: June 13, 1935

Died: March 25, 2000

Michael Francis Novacki was born in Mahanoy City, PA to Anthony and Catherine (Popera) Novacki.  He attended public grammar school in Brockton, PA (1914-22), was a pre-ecclesiastical student at Aquinas College High School in Columbus, OH (1922-26), and Providence College, Providence, RI. (1926-28).

Michael entered the novitiate of St. Joseph’s Province at St. Rose Priory in Springfield, KY on August 4, 1928 receiving the religious name Leo. He was simply professed there. He studied philosophy at the Dominican House of Studies, River Forest, IL (1930-33), theology at St. Joseph Priory, Somerset, OH (1933-34) and at the Dominican House of Studies, Washington, DC (1934-35). He was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop John M. McNamara, auxiliary of Baltimore, MD at St. Dominic’s Church, Washington, DC.

Fr. Leo spent his first priestly year as a parochial assistant at St. Vincent Ferrer parish, New York City (1936-37). For the next 35 years (1937-72) he would minister at the following parishes and shrines of the province: St. Pius, Chicago, IL (1937-41); St. Dominic, Detroit, MI (1941-45); St. Mary, New Haven, CT (1945-60); St. Dominic, Washington, DC (1960-62); St. Peter, Memphis, TN (1962-72). From 1972-97 Fr. Novacki ministered at Holy Name Parish, Philadelphia, PA. Due to failing health, he was assigned to the Center for Assisted Living at St. Dominic Priory, Washington, DC. (1997-99). His final care and death was at Mohun Hall, St. Mary of the Springs, in Columbus, OH.

A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated by the Very Rev. Norman A. Haddad, O.P., Provincial, in Mohun Hall chapel. The homily was preached by Fr. Benedict Joseph, O.P. Interment was at St. Joseph Cemetery, Somerset, OH.

  • frank

    I miss Fr. Novacki. He was a very holy man. May he rest in peace.

  • He touched my life during his two year’s in Washington D.C.. The spirit of his wisdom continue s to bless my life now in 2017 — I am and will be forever grateful for the blessings he expressed to me in the early 1960’s.He was blessed with a spirit of truth and compassion that continues to nourish and bless my life.


    • frank

      I knew Fr. Novacki as well. He was a holy man. If you have any stories you can share, please keep in touch. I don’t know many people who knew him well so I’d be interested in any stories you might have. Thanks.

      • I knew Fr. Novacki jore than fifty years ago only through the confessional.. His wisdom helped me to move forward out of an extremely difficult childhood that I was forced to deny as a child and as an adult. I am ever grateful to have connected with his spirit that guided me through many difficult years. Words he said still bless my life today. His words led me to understand the power of my mind in engaging words in my discovery-recovery journey.