Parish Priests

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Over the past 154 years, St. John's and St. Brigid's parishes have been served by many dedicated pastors, whose brief biographies follow.

Father William McCauley

Pastor: 
1895 to 1912
Fr. William McCauley

Father McCauley was ordained in Ottawa in 1894. After a brief tenure as vicar at St. Patrick's in Ottawa, he was appointed to St. John's and St. Brigid's, where he remained as pastor until 1912. Father McCauley spent the remaining years of his priesthood as pastor of St. Patrick's in Fallowfield. He died in 1944, less than two months after his retirement.

Father Anthime Constantineau

Pastor: 
1891 to 1895
Fr. Anthime Constantineau

Father Constantineau was educated and ordained in Ottawa. Before his arrival at St. John's and St. Brigid's in 1891, he served as vicar or pastor in several parishes, including St. Catherine's in Metcalfe. He left in 1895 to serve in parishes in New York State. His final years were spent as chaplain to various institutions. He died in 1942 and is buried in Bourget, the parish he founded.

It is interesting to note that it was Father Constantineau, by his insistence, who forced the French Canadian Association of Education in Ontario to care for the Dionne Quintuplets.

Father J. Thomas Cole

Pastor: 
1888 to 1891
Fr. J. Thomas Cole

Father Cole was our first Canadian-born pastor. In 1881 he was ordained in his home parish of Vinton. In 1888, he was appointed pastor to St. John's and St. Brigid's, where he remained until his appointment as pastor of Notre-Dame-du-Bon-Conseil (St. Mary's) in Ottawa in 1891. Father Cole died in 1902 and is buried in Vinton.

Father Patrick McGoey

Pastor: 
1879 to 1888
Fr. Patrick McGoey

Before his appointment to St. John's and St. Brigid's in 1879, Father McGoey served in many communities, including Plantagenet, Curran, Farrelton, Chelsea, Cantley and Wakefield and received recognition for several construction projects. He was pastor of St. John's and St. Brigid's until his retirement in 1888. He died in 1890 and is buried in South Gloucester.

Father Aeneous MacDonnell Dawson

Pastor: 
1870 to 1879
Fr. A. M. Dawson

Unlike his predecessors who all came from Ireland, Father Dawson was born in Scotland and was ordained there in 1835. By the time he arrived in Canada in the 1850s he had distinguished himself in the service of the Church to such an extent that he received recognition from Pope Pius IX. The accolades continued in Canada, where he was honoured with doctorates from three universities: Queen's, Laval and Ottawa.

Father Edward Vaughan

Pastor: 
1869 to 1870
Fr. Edward Vaughan

Father Vaughan grew up in Ireland, where he was ordained in 1836. He arrived in Canada in 1843 and served as pastor in Almonte, Huntley and Corkery before being appointed to St. John's and St. Brigid's on January 1, 1869. He remained here until the following year and then retired to a Trappist monastery in Tracadie, Nova Scotia, where he died in 1882.

Father James McGowen

Pastor: 
1866 to 1868

Father McGowan was born in County Sligo in Ireland. He emigrated to Canada and was ordained in Ottawa in 1866. In November of that year he was appointed to St. John's and St. Brigid's. Following his departure in 1868, Father McGowan was pastor of St. Stephen's in Chelsea, Quebec, before emigrating to the United States in 1873.

Father Thomas O'Boyle

Pastor: 
1860 to 1866
Fr. Thomas O'Boyle

Father O'Boyle, a native of County Mayo, Ireland, was the son of Thomas O'Boyle and Mary Clyne. An accomplished Gaelic and French scholar, he remained at St. John's and St. Brigid's until his death in 1866. He is buried in St. John's Cemetery.