Historical Stories 1969 - Fr. Colman Passes Away

Architects_Church_ModelA memorandum from Cardinal McIntyre summarizes a meeting of the Building Committee and a presentation for the plans of the church by the architect, Mr. Bauer.  He stated, “This was a very unusual plan, and the presentation, while explicit, did not in reality do justice to the architects ideas.  The proposal generated much objection from the board for many reasons.  It was decided that the Board would visit with his office to see models that he has prepared in expression of his ideas.”

Fr_Colman_ArticleThe excitement and anticipation in the parish regarding the addition of the new hall and the building of a new church were tragically interrupted by the untimely death of Fr. Colman Colloty on September 19, 1969, during his visit to to San Francisco.  This article in the Tidings on September 26, 1969, provides some of the details of Fr. Colman’s life as well as a summary of the funeral Masses being celebrated simultaneously on his behalf at Sts. Simon & Jude in Huntington Beach, and Holy Name Church in San Francisco.

Rev. Ronald Colloty, Fr. Colman’s brother was chosen to succeed him as the new Pastor of Sts. Simon & Jude Parish, and over the next eleven years as Pastor he was responsible for finishing the school, constructing the hall (to be named Colman Hall), the church and acquiring three more acres that are now the grassed playground.  His love for golf prompted the Men’s Cub to establish the popular annual Fr. Ron Golf Tournament.  Fr. Ron was born on June 18, 1913, in Mount Olivet, California.  He became a Franciscan in 1935 and was ordained in 1937.  He served as an Army Chaplain during World War II, with assignments in England, China and India.

Fr_RonThis was not Fr. Ronald Colloty’s first exposure to the Parish.  In 1966, he was a co-celebrant with two of his brothers, Fr. Aiden and Fr. Philip, at the  25th Anniversary Mass of Fr. Colman’s Ordination.  The mass was held in the Huntington Beach High School Auditorium.  At the Canon of the Mass, Fr. Colman relates “Fr. Ron pointed at the Altar Missal for me to recite part of the Eucharistic prayer.  When I reached for my spectacles, I realized that I had left them in the car. So I signaled to Fr. Aiden to lend me his; when I put them on, I shook my head and signaled to Fr. Philip to lend me his; again a negative reaction, and I signaled to Fr. Colman for his.  I smiled happily and started to read.  Whereupon the congregation broke out in relieved laughter.”

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