For the TV series character, please see Father Mulcahy (TV)

John Mulcahy was a secondary protagonist in the novel MASH: A Novel About Three Army Doctors and the movie based on the novel.

A Roman Catholic priest, Mulcahy served as the chaplain for the 4077 MASH. His duties consisted of ministering to the men and women of the unit, as well as the patients that flowed through the hospital. This included giving the last rites to those who passed on.

Once while administering last rites in OR one of the doctors asked Mulcahy for assistance with another patient, reasoning that the other man was dead and the guy on the table was still alive. Feeling queasy and uneasy about the state of the soul of the other man Mulcahy held the clamp as requested.

One of Mulcahy's duties was hearing confession from the Catholics in the camp. Hearing confession from Paul "Painless" Waldowski he learned that Waldowski was severely depressed. Without breaking the seal of the confessional Mulcahy approached Hawkeye about the situation and gave Hawkeye just enough of a hint for Hawkeye to go talk to Waldowski. Mulcahy helped the doctors to stage a faux suicide in order to convince Waldowski to not give in and commit suicide.

Father Mulcahy was somewhat naive, and often bewildered by the behaviour of the medical staff. When some of the camp gathered in Radar's office to listen in on a hidden microphone broadcasting Frank Burns and Margaret O'Houlihan making love he initially thought the sounds were an episode of The Bickersons. When he realized what the sounds actually were he high tailed it out of the room.

Mulcahy remained in the camp as Hawkeye Pierce and Duke Forrest were rotated out of the camp, and blessed the jeep the two men were taking before they left.


  • The movie version of Father Mulcahy was played by the late Rene Auberjonois, who had played Odo on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.
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