Fr. Quinn passed away on January 15, 2019.
FR. WALTER J. QUINN, O.S.A., a member of the Augustinian Province of St.
Thomas of Villanova, headquartered at Villanova, Pennsylvania, was born August
8, 1930 in Lansdowne, PA and attended West Catholic High School in Philadelphia.
He then went on to the Wharton School of Finance & Commerce of the University of
Pennsylvania where he graduated in 1952 with a BS in Economics with a major in
Marketing & Industrial Management. He served two years in the Army as a First
Lieutenant during the Korean War. He then worked in industrial sales in the PA,
NJ and DE tri-state area.
In 1955 he entered the Augustinian Novitiate and
began graduate studies for the Priesthood at Villanova University and at
Augustinian College in Washington, DC with an MA in Religious Education. Along
the way he picked up credits for an MA in International Law at Catholic
University and was ordained to the Priesthood in Washington's National Shrine of
the Immaculate Conception in 1961.
Fr. Quinn brings to Priests For Life his long
experience as an Augustinian Priest in parish work, having served in
many parishes in the Northeast: in the Philadelphia area at Our Mother of
Consolation in Chestnut Hill, St. Genevieve in Flourtown, Our Mother of Good
Counsel in Bryn Mawr, St. Thomas of Villanova in Rosemont-Villanova and as
Pastor at Olde St. Augustine, the First Foundation of the Augustinian Order in
the USA in 1796, six blocks from Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. In New
York, Fr. Quinn served at St. Nicholas of Tolentine in the Bronx, Our Lady of
Good Counsel in Staten Island, and at Immaculate Conception in Hoosick
Falls-Albany Diocese. In New Jersey, he ministered at St. Nicholas of Tolentine
in Atlantic City-Camden Diocese. During this period he also served as Chaplain
in Chestnut Hill Hospital, Bryn Mawr Hospital, and the Atlantic City Medical
After a 1992 storm wrought catastrophic damage to
the 200-year-old Olde St. Augustine Church, he replaced the church roof and
steeple, and the many interior historical paintings covering every wall and
ceiling, a project costing 1.2 million dollars. The paintings were restored by
methods similar to the restoration of the Sistine Chapel in Rome.
After seven years as Pastor at Olde St.
Augustine, Fr. Quinn volunteered to work in the Augustinian Province of St.
Joseph in Canada on the scenic northeastern shore of Nova Scotia at St.
Augustine Monastery (the first Augustinian Foundation in Canada), where the
ministry is hearing confessions and conducting retreats.
Bishop Colin Campbell, Bishop of the Antigonish
Diocese, appointed him Diocesan Spiritual Director of the United Hearts of Jesus
and Mary, a recently formed lay group (based out of Manchester, NH) encouraging
spiritual growth and reparation to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary. The group now
has chapters in the US, Canada, England and Ireland.
Fr. Quinn has been actively involved in the
pro-life movement since the late sixties, long before the 1973 Roe v. Wade
decision of the US Supreme Court and the advent of the computer age. He led
parish groups to the annual March for Life in Washington, and is founder of
still-active pro-life groups at the parish level, both "Main Line Life Line" in
suburban Philadelphia in the late 70's and "Atlantic Life Line" in Atlantic
City, N.J. in the late 80's.
Upon returning from Canada he joined Priests For
Life in September 1999. "I am convinced that the main focus of the Gospel of
Life reaches people in and through the Church at the parish level." As the
latest addition to the Priests for Life staff he will be preaching on abortion
and euthanasia to groups of clergy and laity throughout the nation encouraging
all to "stand up and be counted" and be actively involved in this most important
crusade of our time: to serve, protect and defend life from the innocent unborn
to the oldest of the old among us!
Commentaries by Fr. Quinn
Fr. Quinn's Obituary