Father Douglas McGonagle
|Tel:||(413) 773-3311 ext. 103
(413) 774-2884 ext. 103
Fr Doug McGonagle is a second career vocation. Prior to his priestly ordination in 2000, Fr Doug worked for several High Tech companies in the Boston area. He left industry in 1983 to study Astronomy at UMass Amherst, earning his B.S. in 1987 and Ph.D. in 1995 (Nitrogen Chemistry in the Interstellar Medium). For most of his time at UMass, Fr Doug was a research assistant with the Five College Radio Astronomy Observatory. His career as an astronomer took him to many other major observatories in the U.S. as well as to South Korea, Chile and Mexico. He is a full member of the American Astronomical Society.
While studying at UMass, Fr Doug was an active member of the Newman Catholic Center community. He was an RCIA catechist, sang in the Newman choir, and was a member of the Confused Catholics Club (aka. The Vocations Group). After completing a post-doc year at UMass Fr. Doug left Amherst, in 1996, to attended Pope John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, MA. While studying for the priesthood, Fr Doug managed to keep his fingers in astronomy by contributing to several abstracts and papers as well as doing work for the Large Millimeterwave Telescope Project. As a seminarian, he was invited to participate at an International Astronomical Union Symposium held in South Korea.
In the year 2000, at the age of 40, Father was ordained to the priesthood. Since ordination Fr Doug has served as a parish priest in West Springfield and Wilbraham before returning to UMass Amherst where he became Director of the Newman Catholic Center. In 2010, Father became the founding pastor of the new, Our Lady of the Valley Parish, in Easthampton where he served until 2021. Fr Doug is now the administrator for both Blessed Sacrament and Holy Trinity parishes in Greenfield.