Paul Durnan to be honored at 81st annual Mercy Ball


The Friends of Mercy Medical Center will hold its 81st annual Mercy Ball on Saturday, Dec. 2, at Crest Hollow Country Club in Woodbury. More than 500 participants are expected to attend the event.

The proceeds will defray the cost of Mercy Medical Center’s recently purchased Molecular Breast Imaging technology. Mercy became the first hospital in New York to feature such a tool, which is revolutionizing women’s imaging by using a tracer and special camera to detect breast cancer despite dense breast tissue, found in 50 percent of women.

Since Mercy’s founding over a century ago, proceeds from the annual Ball have helped make it possible for the hospital to care for the community. Rockville Centre Mayor Francis X. Murray, and Gloria DiSciullo, will be chairing the event.

“We are looking forward to a successful Ball as Mercy celebrates more than 100 years of quality health care to the community,” said Brian Croutier, president of Friends of Mercy.

Three awards will be presented, including the Bishop John R. McGann Lifetime Achievement Award, which will be given to Rockville Centre resident Paul H. Durnan. The award is presented to a distinguished individual dedicated to volunteering in support of the Friends of Mercy.

A lifelong member of St. Agnes Cathedral, Durnan attended the parish’s elementary and high schools. He serves as a Eucharistic minister and lector at masses.

During his senior year of high school, Durnan was a member of the Mercy Ball Honor Guard in 1958. He has been a member of the Friends of Mercy for over 35 years, and served on the medical center’s Board of Trustees for many years. He was a founding member of the St. Francis – Mercy Hospital Corporation, overseeing both of these institutions, and ultimately became a founder of Catholic Health Services of Long Island.

Durnan was also on Molloy College’s Board of Trustees from 1994 to 2005, where he served as chairman for seven years. In 1998, Durnan and his wife, Sherry, were recipients of the Molloy College Lifetime Achievement Award, and in 2017, the two received the first St. Agnes Medal for Outstanding Service in the Diocese of Rockville Centre. They have seven children and 16 grandchildren.

For tickets, sponsorship opportunities and complete event information, visit, or call (516) 705-2618.