Gerald H. Brennan, OFM
1918 – 1999
Fr. Gerald (Kenneth) Brenna, OFM, was born March 27, 1918 in Brooklyn, N.Y. He graduated from St. Francis College in Brooklyn in 1941 and was received into the Order at St. Bonaventure Friary, Paterson, N.J. He professed temporary vows one year later, made his solemn profession in 1945 and was ordained in 1946.
His initial priestly assignment in 1947 was to the Province’s new mission in Brazil. During the first decade, he worked as assistant in several parishes and briefly in secondary education while finishing a master’s degree in history from St. Bonaventure University, Allegany, N.Y.
In 1958, he became pastor of St. Anthony Parish in Brasilia, the capital city. After three years, he became pastor of Catalao for another three years, then returned to St. Anthony’s as pastor, which had become the pro-cathedral of the new Archdiocese of Brasilia. Leaving there in 1972, he spent one year as assistant in Porangatu before ill health forced his return to the United States. In 1973, Fr. Gerald began inner-city ministry at St. Francis Chapel in Providence, R.I., where he served as vicar. He received the papal decoration Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice for his work in Brazil.
He died on April 29, 1999 in West Falmouth, Mass. Fr. Gerald was 81 years old, a professed friar for 56 years and a priest for 52 years.