Josephite Father Joseph John McKinley was born on Christmas Day, 1936, to John and Sarah Phillips McKinley in Kelayres, PA. Baptized a month later in St. Patrick’s Church in McAdoo, PA, he attended the parish grammar school and high school and attended St. John’s Prep Seminary in Little Rock, AR. He applied as a postulant for the Josephite Brotherhood in July of 1958 and was first professed in 1960.
He was then assigned to St. Joseph Industrial School in Clayton, DE, until entering Xavier University in New Orleans in 1967. He returned to Clayton in 1968 as vice principal until 1971 when appointed assistant treasurer at the Josephite headquarters in Baltimore.
Three years later, he was made rector at St. Joseph Center for Prayer at Clayton. In 1977, he resided at St. Augustine High School, while finishing studies at Xavier. He was assistant director and academic dean at the House of Studies and teaching at St. Augustine High School and director of finance there.
In 1981, he began studies at Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans, in preparation for the priesthood and was ordained a Josephite priest by Bishop John Ricard at St. Luke Church, Washington, D.C. on May 25, 1985.
Father McKinley’s first priestly assignment was as an assistant pastor of Holy Comforter/St. Cyprian parish in Washington and as pastor in Most Pure Heart of Mary in Mobile, AL, a year later.
From 1988- 89, he was pastor of St. Joan of Arc in New Orleans. From 1989, he was also serving on the faculty at St. Augustine High School, rector of St. Augustine Faculty House and then pastor of Epiphany Church in New Orleans.
After three years pastoring at Epiphany parish in New Orleans, for more than 20 years he committed to being a travelling Josephite providing pastoral ministry in many parishes. His ministry was to substitute for sick Josephites in recovery and assist the Josephite Society in extended transitions at the time of personnel transfers to new assignments. He also filled in for men on vacation. He was able to serve the people in 12 parishes in Louisiana, 11 parishes in Alabama, six parishes in Mississippi and one parish in Washington, DC and Texas.
He retired in 2014 to St. Joseph Manor in Baltimore and served briefly in a couple of places down South. In July of 2018, he moved to St. Joseph Senior Residence in Washington, D.C.