Msgr. Thomas Green, professor of canon law

Msgr. Thomas Green, professor of canon law, died on April 28 at the Crozer-Chester Medical Center in Chester, Penn., at the age of 79.

Born in Bridgeport on August 10, 1938, to Thomas J. and Beatrice Green, he graduated from the Fairfield Prep in 1956 and received his priestly formation at St. Thomas Seminary in Bloomfield, at St. John’s Seminary in Brighton, Mass., and at the Pontifical North American College in Rome. He was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Bridgeport on December 18, 1963, by Bishop Martin J. O’Connor at the Church of Sant’Ignazio in Rome. He earned an S.T.L. in 1964 and a J.C.D. in 1968, both from the Gregorian University.

In the Diocese of Bridgeport, Msgr. Green served at St. Ambrose Parish in Bridgeport, as vice chancellor of the diocese, director of the former College House of Studies and director of Continuing Education of the Clergy. He taught canon law at St. Louis University and at St. Patrick Seminary in Menlo Park, Calif., before joining the canon law faculty at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., in 1974. He had served there ever since, and at the time of his death was the Stephan Kuttner Distinguished Professor of Canon Law.

He served as department chair at CUA from 1984-87, was a consultant on the Canonical Affairs Committee of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops and a consultant to the Board of Governors of the Canon Law Society of America and chaired the society’s task force on canon law reform. He was named a Chaplain of His Holiness, with the title of Monsignor, by St. John Paul II on December 19, 1996.

Msgr. Green had served as editor of The Jurist, as a member of the Polish National Catholic–Roman Catholic Ecumenical Dialogue, and as co-editor of two widely consulted commentaries on the Code of Canon Law. An active and widely-read intellectual, he was the author of several major publications in scholarly journals.

The body of Msgr. Green will be received at 10 am on Wednesday, May 2, into Holy Name of Jesus Church, 1950 Barnum Ave., Stratford. Visitation will follow until the Mass of Christian Burial, celebrated by Bishop Frank J. Caggiano at 11 am. Msgr. J. James Cuneo will be the homilist. Interment will follow at St. Michael Cemetery, Stratford.