Rev. John L. Gilman, O.S.A. (1910-1973)
Rev. John L. Gilman, O.S.A. entered eternal life on January 25, 1973.
John Lawrence Gilman was born on May 15, 1910 in Bronx, New York to Sylvester and Mary (Karney) Gilman. He was baptized on June 12, 1910 at the Catholic Church of Our Lady of Mercy, Fordham, New York. He received the Sacrament of Confirmation on April 3, 1922 at Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic Church, Staten Island, New York.
After receiving his high school diploma from Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, New York, John was received into the Augustinian Novitiate on September 11, 1929. He professed simple (temporary) vows in the Order of St. Augustine on September 11, 1930 and solemn (permanent) vows on September 11, 1933.
John earned a B.A. in Philosophy from Villanova College, Villanova, Pennsylvania, in 1934. He then pursued theological studies at Augustinian College, Washington, D.C. He was ordained a priest on June 15, 1937. He did graduate studies at Catholic University of America, Washington.
Father Gilman taught at St. Rita High School, Chicago, Illinois, from 1937 to 1940 and from 1941 to 1949. He served for one year (1940-1941) as Assistant Pastor of St. Matthew Parish, Flint, Michigan.
In 1949, he became a chaplain in the United States Army. Father Gilman was stationed for one year at Fort Lee, Virginia, and then was sent to Japan. After two weeks in Japan, the Korean war began. Father Gilman was sent to Korea with the first troops of the 21st Regiment. After his return to the United States, he served at Fort Dix, New Jersey. He attained the rank of Captain and was awarded the Bronze Star.
Following his discharge from the Army, Father Gilman was asigned to St. Monica Novitiate, Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, where he was Director of Novices from 1956 to 1962.
From 1962 to 1968, he was Prior (local superior) of St. Joseph Mission House, Fort Wayne, Indiana. He returned in 1968 to St. Monica, Oconomowoc, where he served as Prior. In 1971, ill health occasioned Father Gilman's retirement. He remained at St. Monica until the time of his death on January 25, 1973.
Father Gilman enjoyed music and composed several religious and secular songs. One of them, Staten Island Ferryboat Blues, won a prize in 1952 on the C.B.S. radio program Songs for Sale, starring Steve Allen.
He is buried in the Augustinian plot at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Alsip, Illinois.