Gentle Collins, OFM
1891 – 1958
Br. Gentle Collins, OFM, was born on Feb. 2, 1891 in Cratloe, County Limerick, Ireland. At the age of 19, he was received as a tertiary at St. Bonaventure Friary, Paterson, N.J. During the next few years, he filled various offices, including those of porter and sacristan at ministries in Callicoon, N.Y., Buffalo, N.Y., and Paterson.
He professed first vows in 1914 and made his solemn profession in 1920. After professing his solemn vows, he served as sacristan at St. Bonaventure University, Allegany, N.Y. — then St. Bonaventure College — for nine years. Br. Gentle was stationed at St. Joseph’s Friary in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., for 22 years, and also ministered for a short time at Siena College, Loudonville, N.Y.
Throughout his 42 years as a friar, Br. Gentle maintained his thick Irish brogue and his Irish love for vivid narrative. His geniality made him popular with friars and laypeople alike, and his devotion to duty marked his entire life.
He died on Sept. 22, 1958 at Mother Francis Schervier Hospital in the Bronx, N.Y. Br. Gentle was 67 years old, a professed friar for 44 years.