Rev. Frederick E. Sweeney, 88, Former St. John the Baptist

Rev. Frederick E. Sweeney, 88, formerly of Framingham, and formerly pastor at St. John the Baptist Church in Haverhill, passed away peacefully Sunday, March 6, at Sancta Maria Nursing Facility in Cambridge.

Born in Worcester, he was a son of the late Frederick E. and Mary C. (Henry) Sweeney. A graduate of Sacred Heart High School, Newton, and St. John’s Seminary, Brighton, he was ordained Jan. 10, 1952 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross by Most Rev. Richard Cushing. His early priestly assignments included St. Mary of the Annunciation, Cambridge; St. Michael, Lowell; St. Timothy, Norwood; St. Vincent de Paul, South Boston; and St. Pius V, Lynn. He then was assigned pastor at St. Francis Church, Dracut, and was the chaplain at Danvers State Hospital. He retired in 2004 after serving as pastor at St. John the Baptist in Haverhill, where he was also the chaplain of the Haverhill Fire Department.

Remembered as down to earth and easy to talk to, he enjoyed golfing at Framingham Country Club (where he went from caddy to member), and many years spent at his retirement residence in York Beach, Maine. Sweeney especially loved to cook and prepare meals to feed large groups, and took some pride in being an original season ticket holder for the New England Patriots from their founding.

He is survived by a sister-in-law, Rose (Garbarino) Sweeney of Shrewsbury; and three nieces: Kathleen M. Trice and her husband James of Uxbridge, Karen Sweeney Shea and her husband Robert of Belmont, and Jane M. Labbadia and her husband John of Farmington, Conn., six grandnephews and five grandnieces. He was the brother of the late Hon. James M. Sweeney and Frances Kavanaugh.

Visiting hours are Friday, March 11, from 4 to 8 p.m., at Boyle Bros. Funeral Home, 173 Union Ave., Framingham. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated Saturday, March 12, at 11 a.m., at St. Bridget’s Church, 830 Worcester Road (route 9 East), Framingham. Burial will follow in St. Stephen’s Cemetery, Framingham. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial donations be made to the Framingham Heart Study, c/o Boston University School of Medicine Development Office, 72 East Concord St., L-219, Boston, MA. 02118.