Rev. Edward J. Sweeney, O.S.A. (1911 - 1984)
Rev. Edward J. Sweeney, O.S.A. entered eternal life on September 7, 1984.
Edward John Sweeney was born on January 28, 1911 in Chicago, Illinois to Charles and Mary (Murray) Sweeney. He was baptized on February 5, 1911 at Visitation Catholic Church, Chicago. He received the Sacrament of Confirmation on November 7, 1922 at St. Rita Catholic Church, Chicago.
For his elementary education, Edward attended St. Rita Catholic School, Chicago. He then attended Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, New York, where he graduated in 1929. He was received into the Augustinian Novitiate on September 10, 1929. He professed simple (temporary) vows in the Order of St. Augustine on September 11, 1930 and solemn (permanent) vows on September 11, 1933.
In 1934, Edward earned a B.A. in Philosophy from Villanova College, Villanova, Pennsylvania. From 1934 to 1938, he pursued theological studies at Gregorian University, Rome. He was ordained a priest on July 25, 1937. He received an S.T.L degree in 1938.
The entire ministerial life of Father Sweeney was spent in the parish apostolate. His first assignment was in 1938 as Assistant Pastor of St. Rita Parish, Chicago. In 1941, he was named Assistant Pastor of St. Clare of Montefalco Parish, Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan. After this, he became Assistant Pastor of St. Mary Parish, Rockford, Illinois, in 1953. Father Sweeney returned to Saint Clare of Montefalco Parish, Grosse Pointe Park, in 1959, again serving as Assistant Pastor. In 1972, he was named Prior (local superior) of the Augustinian community at St. Clare.
Father Sweeney developed Parkinson's disease, and he retired from full-time ministry in 1979. He continued to reside at St. Clare of Montefalco until 1982, when he was assigned to St. Nicholas of Tolentine Monastery, Olympia Fields, Illinois. Declining health made his admission to a skilled nursing care facility necessary, where he died of pneumonia on September 7, 1984.
Noted for his gentle ways, Father Sweeney will also be remembered for his devoted attachment to the Order of St. Augustine. One could set one's watch on his arrival at community exercises. Most of all, he was devoted to the young. In recognition of his ministry to the youth of the parish, when St. Clare of Montefalco School, Grosse Pointe Park, expanded its parish school, the newly constructed section was named in honor of him.
Father Sweeney is buried in the Augustinian plot at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Alsip, Illinois.