O’Shea, Michael, 1926-2020, Capuchin priest

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O’Shea, Michael, 1926-2020, Capuchin priest

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  • O'Shea, Venantius

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14 November 1926-29 October 2020


Michael O’Shea was born in Cork on 14 November 1926, the son of Mortimer O’Shea and his wife Catherine O’Shea. He joined the Capuchin Franciscans on 3 October 1946 at Rochestown Friary in County Cork where he received the habit and was given Venantius as his religious name . He professed his solemn vows on 4 October 1950. He was ordained to the priesthood on 23 May 1954 at Ard Mhuire Capuchin Friary in County Donegal. He studied at University College Cork and obtained a Bachelor of Arts in History and Philosophy with a minor in English literature. Following his ordination he was sent to California in September 1954. He taught religion at St. Francis High School in La Cañada-Flintridge in California. He was Associate Pastor at St. Mary’s Church in Ukiah, California, Old Mission Santa Inés in Solvang, California, St. Francis of Assisi Church in Los Angeles, California, Our Lady of Angels Church in Burlingame, California, Our Lady of Good Counsel Church in Fort Bragg, California, and in St. Joseph’s Church in Hermiston, Oregon. In 1970 he taught Franciscan History at San Lorenzo Capuchin Novitiate in Santa Inés. In 1977 he was appointed as first Provincial Secretary of the Capuchins in Western American. In 1987 he obtained a Masters’ Degree in Applied Theology from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. In 1988 he was a chaplain at the Federal Penitentiary in Lompoc in California. In 1995 he was a chaplain at Nazareth House in Fresno, California. In 2000 he was appointed Provincial Historian and resided at St. Conrad Friary in Berkeley, California. In 2005 he was Associate Pastor at Our Lady of Angels Church in Burlingame, where he ministered to the sick at Peninsula Hospital and heard confessions in the local parish. He retired in 2014 and was cared for at Mercy Care Center in Oakland, California. His last few months were spent at Herman Health Care Center in San Jose, California. He died on 16 January 2020 and was buried in the cemetery attached to San Lorenzo Seminary, Santa Inés, California.

Baptismal name: Michael James O’Shea
Religious name: Fr. Michael O’Shea OFM Cap. (previously Fr. Venantius O’Shea OFM Cap., he reverted to his baptismal name after the Second Vatican Council)
Date of birth: 14 Nov. 1926
Place of birth: Cork
Name of father: Mortimer O’Shea
Name of mother: Catherine O’Shea (née Meighan)
Date of reception into the Capuchin Order: 3 Oct. 1946
Date of first profession: 4 Oct. 1947
Date of final profession: 4 Oct. 1950
Date of ordination (as priest): 23 May 1954
Educational attainments: BA (1950)
Missionary activities: Travelled to the United States Mission on 27 Sept. 1954
Date of death: 16 Jan. 2020
Place of death: Herman Care Center, San Jose, California
Place of burial: Cemetery, San Lorenzo Seminary, Santa Inés, California


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