O'Connor, John J.

O'Connor, John J. (Joseph)

(1920–  ) Catholic prelate; born in Philadelphia. After his ordination (1945) he taught high school, worked with retarded children, and earned advanced degrees in philosophy, psychology, and political science. He then spent 27 years as a U.S. Navy chaplain, becoming chief of chaplains before retiring as a rear admiral (1979). From 1979 to 1983 he was auxiliary bishop of New York, with special responsibility over U.S. military chaplains. After serving briefly as bishop of Scranton, Pa., he was named archbishop of New York in 1984, becoming a cardinal in 1985. A highly influential figure, he espoused generally conservative views; he was outspoken, for instance, in condemning Catholic politicians who took "pro-choice" positions on abortion.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.