Rev. Edward G. Grace, O.S.A. (1915-2004)
Rev. Edward G. Grace, O.S.A. entered eternal life on July 31, 2004.
Edward George Grace was born on February 22, 1915 in Chicago, Illinois to James and Maria Josephine (Judge) Grace. He was baptized on March 14, 1915 at Nativity of Our Lord Catholic Church, Chicago. He had two brothers and two sisters.
Edward attended parish elementary schools at Visitation and St. Rita, both in Chicago. Upon completion of his elementary education, he entered the seminary in September of 1929 at Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, New York. He received his high school diploma there in 1933.
He was received into the Augustinian Novitiate on September 9, 1933. He professed simple (temporary) vows in the Order of St. Augustine on September 10, 1934 and solemn (permanent) vows on September 10, 1937.
Father Grace received a B.A. in Philosophy from Villanova College, Villanova, Pennsylvania, in June of 1938. He studied theology at Augustinian College, Washington, D.C., from 1939 to 1942. He was ordained to the priesthood on June 10, 1941 in Washington.
While Father Grace studied theology, he also did graduate studies at Catholic University of America, Washington, where he was awarded an M.A. in Sociology in 1942. He also took graduate courses in Education from 1957 to 1960 at DePaul University, Chicago.
His first assignment was in June of 1942 to St. Rita High School, Chicago, as a teacher. In June of 1943, Father Grace was transferred to St. Augustine Parish, Detroit, Michigan, as Assistant Pastor. He returned to teaching in 1948 when he was assigned to Cascia Hall Preparatory School, Tulsa, Oklahoma.
In 1951, he was transferred to St. Mary Parish, Rockford, Illinois, as Assistant Pastor. He was assigned to Mendel Catholic High School, Chicago, in 1953 as Vice-Principal, teacher and procurator.
In 1967, Father Grace was transferred to the new parish of St. Gregory, Galt (now Cambridge), Ontario, Canada, as its Pastor. He held this position until 1980.
Father Grace retired to St. Nicholas of Tolentine Monastery, Olympia Fields, Illinois, in 1981. Later that same year, he returned to the active ministry by resuming parish work in the Diocese of Hamilton. Shortly afterwards, he was appointed the first resident Pastor of St. John Brebeuf Church, Erin, Ontario.
Father Grace was elected by his fellow Senior Friars to the Province Commission on Senior Status in 1985. He served as Secretary to this Commission.
Father Grace was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in the early 1980's. Declining physical capabilities necessitated his resignation as Pastor of St. John Brebeuf in 1986.
In January of 1988, in order to receive needed care, he moved to St. Joseph's Villa, Dundas, Ontario.
He is remembered as the gentlest of gentle people, yet as a determined person who would quickly take the necessary steps to attain his goals. As his body gradually grew weaker, he always maintained a positive attitude and a sense of humor.
Father Grace developed pneumonia in July of 2004. He died on July 31, 2004 at St. Joseph's Villa.
He is buried at Marymount Cemetery, Guelph, Ontario.