Fr. Sean Patrick O’Brien was born in Binghamton, New York in 1965, the son of John Francis O’Brien and Donna (nee Tompkins) O’Brien and the elder brother of Maureen O’Brien. Fr. Sean graduated from Vestal Senior High School in 1983. After studying at Herkimer County Community College to be a radio announcer, he decided to apply for seminary and was accepted by the Diocese of Syracuse. After three years at Wadhams Hall in Ogdensburg, NY, he finished Major Seminary at St. Mary’s in Baltimore, MD and was ordained to the priesthood on June 5, 1993.
Fr. O’Brien’s diocesan assignments include: Our Lady of Lourdes, Utica, NY from 1993-1998; St. Patrick’s Church, Forestport, NY and St. Mary of the Snows, Otter Lake, NY from 1998-2002; Christ Our Light in Pulaski, NY from 2003-2009; Christ Our Hope Catholic Community of Northern Oneida County, from 2009-2014; St. Matthew’s, East Syracuse/St. Mary’s, Minoa/St. Francis of Assisi, Bridgeport, NY from 2015-2019. Currently, Fr. Sean is the pastor of St. Peter’s Church, the Faith Community of St. Mary’s/St. Peter’s, Rome, NY.
Fr. O’Brien joined the Navy in May of 1991. His Reserve assignments include: Naval Hospital Oakland, Strike Fleet, Submarine Squadron Support Unit in New London, CT; 5thFleet in the Arabian Gulf; NMCB 27, 25th Marines, 7th Naval Construction Regiment, 4th Marine Air Wing, Command Naval Installation Command, Washington DC and Military Sealift Command. Fr. O’Brien retired from the Navy in October of 2020, with the rank of Captain.
Fr. O’Brien’s mobilizations/deployments include: Ground Zero (NYC) 2001; Operation Iraqi Freedom 2002-2003; Operation Enduring Freedom (CJTF-82 Afghanistan) 2007; CJTF-HOA (Horn of Africa) 2014-2015.
Fr. O’Brien’s personal awards include: Legion of Merit, Defense Meritorious Service Medal (2 awards), Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Commendation Medal and Navy Achievement Medal (3 awards).
In January of 2022, Fr. O’Brien was appointed Vicar Forane (V.F.), previously referred as “Regional Vicar,” for Region IV of the Syracuse Diocese by Bishop Douglas J. Lucia. Region IV covers Boonville, Camden, Canastota, Forestport, Hamilton, Holland Patent, Lee Center, Marcy, Morrisville, North Bay, Oneida, Oriskany Falls, Otter Lake, Rome, Sherrill, Sylvan Beach, Taberg, Vernon, Verona and Waterville.
In his free time, Fr. O’Brien can be found touring in his Model T Ford, boating on Kayuta Lake, riding vintage snowmobiles and playing fiddle with friends.