The Reverend Thomas J. Gallagher, Senior Priest-Retired, died Sunday, 10 January 2016, after having received the prayerful support and consolation of the Sacraments.
Thomas Joseph Gallagher was born on 23 September 1930. His parents were the late Anthony J. and Elsie (Klika). He was educated at St. Catherine, Cleveland, Cathedral Latin High School, Cleveland, John Carroll University, Western Reserve Graduate School, Sacred Heart Seminary, Detroit, MI, Borromeo Seminary, Wickliffe and St. Mary Seminary, Cleveland. On 20 May 1961 in the Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist, Bishop Floyd L. Begin ordained him to the priesthood for the service of the Diocese of Cleveland.
Fr. Gallagher’s first assignment was as Parochial Vicar of St. Hilary, Akron. In addition to this assignment he served as Spiritual Director for the St. Peter Claver Interracial Guild and as Chaplain for the Akron Catholic Interracial Council. On 9 June 1966 he was transferred to serve as Parochial Vicar of St. Martha, Akron. On 1 October 1968 he enrolled as a student in the Clergy Internship Program at Case Western Reserve University and also served as assistant to the Director of Newman Apostolate. Fr. Gallagher was assigned to serve as Parochial Vicar of St. Jerome, Cleveland on 2 September 1969. He was appointed Administrator of St. Agatha, Cleveland on 17 August 1971. In addition, Fr. Gallagher served as a member of the Glenville Team Ministry. On 15 October 1975 Fr. Gallagher was appointed Pastor of St. Philip Neri, Cleveland. During this assignment he also served as moderator of the Cuyahoga Regional Council, NCCW (1981-1987), as Dean and Consultor (1983-1986), as associate judge of the Tribunal and as Dean of Cleveland Central East Deanery (1983-1989). On 1 March 1990 he was appointed Chaplain of Mt. Sinai Hospital with residence at St. Vitus, Cleveland and Chaplain (part time) of Cleveland Psychiatric Institute & Western Reserve Habilitations Center. On 5 June 1992 Fr. Gallagher was given permission to serve as Chaplain at the VA Medical Center, Brecksville. He retired on 23 September 2000. Fr. Gallagher faithfully ministered to the sick and suffering alleviating their difficulties with his friendly smile and gentle humor.
The wake will begin with Vespers on Friday, 15 January in St. Vincent de Paul Church, 164 W. Market Street, Akron, OH 44303 at 3:00 p.m. Bishop Roger Gries will be the presider. The wake will continue until 7:00 p.m. The Funeral Mass will be celebrated Saturday, 16 January in St. Vincent de Paul Church 11:00 a.m. Bishop Richard Lennon will be the main celebrant and Fr. Joseph Kraker will be the homilist. Interment will be at Calvary Cemetery, Cleveland.
In accord with the provisions of the Marian Pact, please try to attend and concelebrate the Funeral Liturgy, offer Mass for him as you are able and cause him to be remembered and prayed for in the appropriate public prayers of the Church. May Fr. Gallagher and all our bishops, priests and deacons who have died, live forever in the joy of the Resurrection.
Click HERE to review a PDF version of the above obituary letter.