Jan. 15, 2019 - Father Francis C. Brennan, SJ, died Jan. 11, 2019, in St. Louis. He was 91 years old, a Jesuit for 73 years and a priest for 60 years.
An academic and a pastor, Fr. Brennan’s life will be celebrated in a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2019, at St. Francis Xavier College Church in St. Louis. The visitation will begin one hour before, at 9:00 a.m., in the same location. Burial will follow at Calvary Cemetery in St. Louis.
Born in St. Louis Sept. 8, 1927, he was the son of Frank and Emily Brennan. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brothers Michael, Martin and Anthony, and his sister Alice. He is survived by his brother Dennis and his sisters Moira Brennan and Emily Maull.
Following his graduation from St. Louis University High School, he entered the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) at St. Stanislaus Seminary in Florissant, Mo., on Aug. 8, 1945. He spent the first part of his ministerial years in higher education, serving at Saint Louis University (1965-74) as English teacher and then dean of the graduate school; at Xavier University in Cincinnati (1974-82) as academic vice-president; and then in Honolulu as superior at the Newman Center (1982-86).
The second part of his apostolic life was in pastoral work. He served at White House Retreat in St. Louis (1987-91), then as pastor at St. Mark Parish in Houston, Mo. (1991-96), and as pastor at St. Cecelia’s Catholic Church in Kennett, Mo. (1997-99).
He returned to academic pursuits as associate editor at the Institute of Jesuit Sources (1999-2007). Beginning in 2007, he engaged in pastoral ministry and praying for the Church and Society, all from Jesuit Hall in St. Louis.
Father Brennan earned his bachelor’s degree in philosophy, a Licentiate in Philosophy and a Licentiate in Sacred Theology, all from Saint Louis University. He also earned a Master of Arts from Marquette University, and a Ph.D. in English from the University of North Carolina.
He was ordained a priest at St. Mary’s College in St. Marys, Kansas, on June 18, 1958. He pronounced his final vows on Aug. 15, 1962 at Georgetown University.
Memorial gifts may be made to the USA Central and Southern Province of the Society of Jesus at 4511 West Pine Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63108 or through this website.
The Ignatian Spirituality Program of Denver offers Ignatian group retreats, individual spiritual direction, the Spiritual Exercises in Everyday Life, and trains spiritual directors and guides of the Spiritual Exercises.