Date of death: 4/23/2015
Saint Meinrad Class: O 1959
Rev. Fr. Michael J. Clifford, 82, Peshtigo, entered into eternal life on Thursday, April 23, 2015. He was born January 6, 1933 in Appleton to William and Dorothy (Hatton) Clifford. As a young boy, he attended St. Patrick Catholic Grade School in Menasha before going on to Campion Jesuit High School in Prairie du Chien, graduating with the class of 1951. Michael then attended junior college at St. Francis Minor Seminary in Milwaukee for two years and continued his education at Saint Meinrad Seminary in St. Meinrad, IN where he received his BA in January of 1957. He then returned to St. Francis de Sales Seminary, Milwaukee and earned a Masters in Divinity Degree. On June 11, 1960, he was ordained by Bishop Stanislaus V. Bona at St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Green Bay. Fr. Mike celebrated his 50th anniversary of ordination on June 6, 2010 at St. Mary Catholic Church in Peshtigo with his family, many past and present parishioners and friends. Following his ordination, Fr. Clifford was temporarily assigned to the Office of Associated Diocesan Societies, Green Bay and served as an Assistant Pastor at Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish, Green Bay. He was then appointed to St. Gabriel the Archangel Parish, Neenah where he served as Assistant Pastor until 1971. His added responsibilities included serving as chaplain at the University of Wisconsin-Fox Cities Newman Club Center at Menasha until 1965. As an assistant editor of the Green Bay Register for a short time during this period of his life, he resided at St. Jude Rectory in Green Bay. Fr. Mike became Pastor of St. Bernadette Parish, Appleton in 1971. Father served many parishes in the Green Bay Diocese including St. Mary Magdalene Parish, Waupaca (1974), St. Mary Parish, Peshtigo (1978), St. Mary Parish, Algoma (1983), St. James Parish, Cooperstown, (1984), St. Anthony Parish, Oconto Falls (1987). He served as Administrator of St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Coleman/Pound and St. Wenceslaus Parish, Klondike (1994). In addition to these assignments, Fr. Mike also served as Priest Celebrant at St. Michael Parish, Suring and St. Mary Parish, Peshtigo. Fr. Clifford is a former member of the Marinette Elks Lodge #1313, Waupaca Knights of Columbus Council 3432 and a Charter Member of the 4th Degree Chain O’Lakes #1862 Assembly, Waupaca. Survivors include one sister-in-law, Ruth Clifford, Neenah; seven nieces, two nephews, many grand nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, an infant brother, William Clifford and his brother George Clifford and sister Patricia Fenlon, both in 2009, one brother-in-law, John Fenlon; his friend and long time caregiver, Marie Peterson on February 26, 2012 and great uncle, the Rev. Fr. George A. Clifford, Pastor at St. Patrick Parish in Menasha (1915-31). In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, memorial may be made to Saint Meinrad Archabbey & Seminary, 200 Hill Dr. St. Meinrad, IN 47577.