Thomas F. Gilligan, O.S.A.

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1906 – 1969 (December 20)

Thomas F. Gilligan was born in Philadelphia on August 6, 1906, one of ten children of Thomas Gilligan and Ellen Fanning. His brother, Francis, also entered the Order as a member of our Province. Thomas was professed on June 22, 1924, and received his Bachelor and Master of Arts degree from Villanova. He studied theology at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland, and was ordained at the Augustinerkloster, Wurzburg, Germany, on December 20, 1929.

Upon return to the United States Father Gilligan was assigned to Saint Mary’s Hall, Villanova, where he served until 1965. From 1937 to 1965 he served also as regent of studies for the province. He was Provincial Secretary from 1938 to 1944, and a definitor from 1950 to 1953. He was prior of the community from 1953 to 1959.

Along with his professorial duties, Father Gilligan contributed to the scholarship of the province through translating works of Saint Augustine. It is his translation of the Soliloquies of Augustine which is published by Fathers of the Church Series. He also published a work of devotion in honor of Our Mother of Good Counsel.

Father Gilligan served on the board which developed the plans for the New Saint Mary’s Hall Seminary. He also served as director of the Augustinian Educational Association in its formative years. He was awarded a Doctorate of Laws degree, honoris causa, from Merrimack College in 1957.

In 1965 Father was assigned as prior and pastor of Saint Thomas of Villanova Parish, Rosemont, PA. He retired from this position in October, 1969, and it is here that he died suddenly on December 20, 1969 at age 63. He was buried in the community cemetery, at Saint Mary’s Hall, Villanova. Later his body was re-interred in Calvary Cemetery, West Conshohocken, Pa.