Full of Grace – Msgr. Mozier, administrator and pastor

Full of Grace – Msgr. Mozier, administrator and pastor

mozier-webWhen the first bishop of Camden, Bartholomew J. Eustace, died in November 1956, the diocesan Board of Consultors had to choose an administrator to lead the diocese before Pope Pius XII appointed a new bishop.

After Bishop Justin McCarthy died three years later, the Board of Consultors had to make that same choice again, before Pope John XXIII’s appointment.

In both instances, the Board of Consultors chose Msgr. Augustine Mozier.

Msgr. Mozier, who died in 1992 at the age of 83, served for many years as vicar general and as vice-chancellor of the diocese.

Born in 1909, he entered the seminary out of the Fairview section of Camden, and studied at St. Charles, Catonsville, Md., and The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. In 1937, he was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Trenton, when what is now the Diocese of Camden was a part of the Trenton Diocese.

After a year as associate pastor at Our Lady Star of the Sea in Atlantic City, Msgr. Mozier became secretary to Bishop Eustace in 1938. The following year, he was named secretary to the Tribunal, and later appointed vice-chancellor.

In his role as vice-chancellor, he is recognized as setting up effective systems for bookkeeping and insurance for the nascent diocese, and he secured the diocese’s first chancery office at Cooper Street in Camden, which would be the diocese’s center of operations for the next 30 years.

Msgr. Mozier also worked with and recruited seminarians. During World War II, he oversaw a program for seminarians, which had the students working on a farm outside St. Mary’s Home in what is now Cherry Hill (then Delaware Township).

After the second World War, he made yearly visits to seminaries in Ireland to recruit potential priests for the diocese. Due to his visits, some 50 priests came to his diocese.

In 1950, he became a vicar general, and in 1956, assumed his role as diocesan administrator. In 1960, he became the pastor of St. John Parish in Collingswood and would continue in this assignment until his retirement in 1980.

Researched by Peter G. Sánchez and James A. McBride, photo by James A. McBride

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