Gilbert Monroe, OFM
1900 – 1958
Fr. Gilbert Monroe, OFM, was born in Croghan, N.Y., on March 25, 1900. He was baptized in St. Stephen’s Church and attended grammar school in the friars’ parish. After graduating from St. Joseph’s Seraphic Seminary in Callicoon, N.Y., he entered the Province’s novitiate at St. Bonaventure Friary in Paterson, N.J., in 1917.
He and professed temporary vows the following year. In 1921, Fr. Gilbert made his profession of solemn vows and was ordained a priest in Buffalo in 1924.
Fr. Gilbert’s thirty-four years as a priest covered a wide range of ministry. He taught math and science the seminary, served as procurator and professor of homiletics at Holy Name College in Washington, D.C., and was assigned to St. Joseph’s Church in Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
In 1934, Fr. Gilbert was appointed vicar and assistant pastor at St. Stephen of Hungary Church in New York City, where he ministered for nine years. The Congressus of 1943 elected him to be guardian and pastor of St. Joseph’s until becoming chaplain of the Holy Family Residence in West Paterson, N.J., in 1950.
Fr. Gilbert possessed a combination of traits, which made him an admirable friar-priest. He had a great love for people, a cheerful disposition and a generous heart. As a guardian, he was kind and understanding. One of the Holy Family residents described him as always having a “big, good-humored smile.”
Fr. Gilbert died on Aug. 11, 1958, at Holy Family Residence. He was 58 years old, a professed friar for 40 years and a priest for 34 years.