Patrick A. Stanton, O.S.A.

1826 – 1891 (February 28)

Patrick Augustine Stanton was born in Castlebar, County Mayo, Ireland on January 27, 1826, to William Stanton and Mary Kyle. His maternal uncle, Father Thomas Kyle, labored for a time at St. Augustine’s in Philadelphia, and his cousin, Father James Waldron, was a member of the Province. Patrick immigrated to the United States in 1841, presumably with the intention of entering the Order and within a short time was enrolled at St. Charles Seminary, then located in the city near Saint Augustine. The following year he and the two Mullen brothers left for Italy to make their novitiate at Tolentino. They were professed in 1843, after which, they did their studies in Perugia, where, in 1847, Patrick was ordained sub-deacon by Cardinal Pecci, the future Pope Leo XIII. He returned home in the summer of 1847 and was ordained to the priesthood in Saint Augustine’s Church, Philadelphia, on July 30, 1848 by, Bishop Francis Kenrick. A month later, on September 1, he became a citizen of the United States.

Father Stanton served at Saint Augustine’s for the next nine years and, in 1857, was named prior and pastor at Villanova. In 1858, he was appointed Commissary-Provincial, an office he held until 1866. In 1859, he took up residence in Saint Augustine’s, Philadelphia where he lived until 1869, when he became President of Villanova College, a post he held until 1872. Two years later, in 1874, he was appointed to preside at the first Chapter of the Province of Saint Thomas of Villanova, which elected Father Thomas Galberry. Less than a year later, he was to become rector provincial, with Galberry’s appointment as bishop of Hartford, Connecticut. Something similar occurred a few years later, when Bishop Galberry’s successor as provincial, Pacifico Neno, was called to Rome, and Father Stanton once again was called upon to govern the province.

Cardinal Gibbons invited Father Stanton to become a delegate to the Third Plenary Council of Baltimore in 1884, where he served as theologian and notary. In 1886, he was appointed devil’s advocate in the cause of Bishop Neumann. In 1889, he attended the General Chapter in Rome as an ex-Assistant General.

Shortly after returning from Rome, Father Stanton became seriously ill. He died in Philadelphia on February 28, 1891, at the age of 65. A Solemn Requiem was celebrated on March 3rd by his cousin, Father Waldron, who was then Prior Provincial. Archbishop Patrick Ryan presided and pronounced the absolution of the body in church and at the tomb. Father Stanton is buried at Saint Augustine’s in Philadelphia.