Fr. Donald J. McGuire, S.J.
[Formerly posted on the Web site of Mission FIDES at http://www.missionfides.com/history/frmcguire.htm. Retrieved from Google's cache of that page.]
grew up in a devout Christian home which was filled with the love of
Greek and Latin Classics his father had gained early in the century
at St. Ignatius College. He completed seven years of elementary
education with the Sisters of the Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary at
St. Agatha Grammar School in Chicago where he graduated at twelve years
of age in June, 1943. At
Sixteen, in June of 1947, he graduated with a Classical Honors Diploma
from his father's Alma Mater, Chicago's St. Ignatius High School, where
he had had a four-year scholarship.
August 21, 1947, he entered the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) at Milford,
Ohio where he spent the next two years in intensive spiritual training. During the ensuing two years at Milford
he specialized in Latin and Greek Classical Literature, but at the same
time completed most of his undergraduate courses. In August, 1951 he went to West Baden
College, West Baden Springs, Indiana to pursue the study of philosophy. In June, 1952, he received the degree
of Bachelor of Arts with honors there with a major in Classical languages
from Loyola University of Chicago.
In June, 1954, he received the Licentiate degree in Philosophy
also with honors from West Baden College.
For the next three years he taught Latin at Loyola Academy, a
Jesuit secondary school in Chicago, Illinois.
In the summer of 1955 he completed all the courses required for
the degree of Master of Arts in Philosophy at Loyola University of Chicago. At the completion of four years' study
of Theology he received the Licentiate degree in Theology with honors
from West Baden College and was ordained a priest in June, 1961.
June, 1961 until February, 1965 he lived in Europe.
The summer of 1961 he studied the German language and culture
in Bavaria. From September,
1961 to June, 1962 he engaged once again in intensive spiritual and
ministerial training at Munster in Westphalia, Germany.
From October, 1962 to February, 1965 he did special studies at
the Philosophical Institute of the Theological Faculty of the University
of Innsbruck, Austria towards the completion of a Church doctorate in
Philosophy. During his
stay in Europe, besides mastering German and French, he did extensive
priestly work during vacations and free time in Germany, Austria, England
and Ireland--retreats, parish work, hospital and military chaplaincy,
and the teaching of Theology.
During the summers of 1962 through 1964 he traveled extensively
in Europe, studying cultures but especially visiting the academic institutions
of twenty countries to evaluate the balance of scientific and humanistic
studies at every educational level.
Also during this European sojourn he began his dedicated pursuit of Roman and especially Grecian archaeology. He visited, studied, and did extensive photography in Roman and Greek archaeological excavations and museums throughout the Mediterranean area. He continued this archaeological work almost every summer, especially on the island of Thera, as well as Corinth, Greece and Agrigento, Sicily
returning to the United States he taught Classical Greek and Theology
at Loyola Academy in Wilmette, Illinois from February, 1965 to February,
1970. There he became Chairman of the Classics
Department and co-founded an Honors Program which featured an in-depth
introduction to Eastern and Western cultures, in which the students studied
along with their regular college preparatory courses, seven semesters
of Classical Greek language and literature along with six semesters of
Mandarin dialect and Chinese culture.
1972, he joined with Frs. Raymond Schoder, S.J. and Carl Burlage, S.J.
with Dr. Martial Capbern and Judge Francis McGarr to form the Manresa
Board, which founded Newman College in Normandie, Missouri.
course work which he began in 1970, gained him in February, 1974, the
degree of Master of Arts in Classical Studies; and in February, 1977,
the Ph.D in the same field from Loyola University in Chicago.
June, 1976, he joined Fr. Joseph Fessio, S.J. and his colleagues at the
University of San Francisco in the very beginning of their exciting Christian
Liberal Arts undergraduate program called the Saint Ignatius Institute. Until January, 1981 he remained there
conducting the Freshman Seminars in Ancient Classical Literature, History
and Philosophy, as well as directing student retreats and engaging in
extensive academic and spiritual counseling.
January, 1981, he left the St. Ignatius Institute and began preparatory
work on a project of televising his University Seminars for Mother Angelica's
EWTN in Alabama. This work came to a halt in the summer
of 1983 because of a failure in funding.
In the Fall, 1983 he engaged in a 6-week intense project of reviewing
a proposed change of treasured prayers of the Church, funded by the DeRance
Foundation, which also supported the Santa Fe Communications television
station where Father was theological consultant from June until Fall,
the year of 1983 kept Father occupied with a few different endeavors,
he began at that time the primary apostolate with which he is currently
occupied. His close collaboration with the Carmelite
Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles since 1976 where he gives
retreats, conferences and spiritual direction figure in prominently. The saintly, now deceased, Provincial
of this community, Sr. Mary Ines of St. Therese, led him to the cloistered
Carmelites of Cristo Rey of San Francisco in 1978 with whom he has worked
closely as extraordinary confessor, spiritual director, retreat master,
and consultant to the present day.
(He also cares for their Carmel in Las Vegas, a daughter convent
founded in 1988.)
to a visit of Mother Teresa of Calcutta to the Carmelites of Cristo Rey
and on the recommendation of the Prioress, in the Spring of 1983 he gave
days of Recollection to the Novices and Postulants of the Missionaries
of Charity in San Francisco. That
summer, Sr. Priscilla, M.C., Mother Teresa's Regional Director until 1986
for the Americas, invited him to give retreats to the sisters around the
world. He is officially assigned by the Society
of Jesus as the pastoral minister and retreat director to the Missionaries
first Missionary of Charity (M.C.) eight-day retreat was to the novices
in Rome in December of 1983.
addition to providing frequent spiritual direction for Sisters preparing
for vows, he has also lectured in 59 series of three-, four- or five-day
seminars. These seminars were given to many of the
Sisters of the different retreat groups, but especially to the novices
and tertians. These lectures
included documents of the Second Vatican Council, Lumen Gentium,
Guadium et Spes, and Ad gentes; Pope John Paul II's Apostolic
Exhortation, Redemptionis Donum and Familiaris Consortio;
and his encyclicals, Dominum et Vivificatem, Redemptoris Mater,
Solicitudo Rei Socialis, Mulieris Dignitatem, Christifideles
Laici, Redemptoris Custos,
Redemptoris Missio, Veritatis Splendor and Fides et Ratio. As a result of an M.C. chapter meeting
in Calcutta during the Fall of 1990, there arose a special concern for
continued spiritual training for the Junior Sisters of the community. This initiated seminars directed towards
a deeper insight into the personality of Christ, and on the nature of
the consecrated religious life.
Fr. McGuire conducted an extraordinary number of these seminar.
Seminars for Superiors on their role in the community, the formation
of the will and other formation-type seminars have been greatly requested
in the past several years.
Father has had the privilege of spiritually
directing, counseling, baptizing, as well as sending off to heaven, many
A.I.D.S. patients whom he contacts at Mother Teresa's three homes one
called the "Gift of Love" and the other two, the "Gift of Peace" in New
York, Washington, D.C. and San Francisco respectively, since 1986.
He has had many other opportunities to work with the poor of the
Sisters ministries. This
includes Days of Recollection to the A.I.D.S. patients, to the Newark,
New Jersey area's M. C. Soup Kitchen poor, the M.C. Shelters' homeless
and unwed mothers, to volunteers, and to co-workers; and a 3-day retreat
for young men and women on the reservation of the Navajo Indians near
Gallup, New Mexico.
Another very special branch of missionaries
comprised of laity from around the world are the Lay Missionaries of Charity. Their apostolate is to assist all branches
of the Missionaries of Charity in their local area. In September, 1977 over one-hundred-forty
people from two dozen different countries gather in Lourdes, France for
a retreat under Father McGuire's direction. He was invited to lead the group through
a spiritual journey in the Holy Land two years later.
Having given the inaugural retreat to Mother
Teresa's new community of Priests, the Missionary Fathers of Charity,
in the Bronx, New York in December of 1985, he returned to direct their
novices in an eight-day retreat during Holy Week, 1987.
That Summer brought Father back to them to deliver a five-day course
on the Holy Father's encyclical, Redemptor Hominis.
He continues with more spiritual direction to the entire community
during visits to their different communities.
He has directed two annual retreats to Mother's
Contemplative Sisters in the South Bronx, New York in November 1986 and
April 1987. In June of that year, Father gave the
Sisters a five-day seminar on the early Councils of the Church and the
Holy Father's encyclical, Redemptoris Mater. A special event was
his first visit to their home community in Calcutta in November 1991.
was privileged in 1989 to give in Rome an 8-day retreat to a novice of
Mother's Contemplative Fathers and Brothers.
He returned in the summer of 1990 to direct the whole community
in a 30-day retreat. In November,
1998 Father gave his first formal retreat to the Active M.C. Brothers.
his retreat work with Mother Teresa's communities, he continues to give
retreats to other religious communities--in California: the active Carmelite
Sisters in Alhambra, the Norbertine Fathers at the Abbey of St. Michael's
in Orange, a retreat in Spanish to the Contemplative Carmelite Sisters
of Cristo Rey Monastery in San Francisco; a Poor Clare Contemplative Community
in Sauk Rapids, Minnesota; the Marian-Rite Benedictine Sisters in Rutland,
MA; the Daughters of St. Mary of Providence in Chicago; the cloistered
Carmelite Sisters in Desplaines, IL; the Parish Visitors of Mary Immaculate
in Monroe, New York; an 8-day retreat and seminar on "Misio de Redentor"
in Spanish to Mexican Sisters of Perpetual Adoration in Anchorage, Alaska;
and other retreats to Sisters of various communities gathered at the Jesuit
Retreat House in Barrington, Illinois.
has conducted spiritual conferences for Religious, such as three days
on Religious Life for the 125th Anniversary of the Dominican Sisters in
Nashville, Tennessee, and closing the annual meeting of the Institute
on Religious Life in Chicago with the address, "The Cross:
The Following of Christ".
work with seminarians and priests has increased, including a retreat for
the New York Archdiocese in 1991.
The following year he led an independent group of priests and seminarians
in a specialized discernment retreat and gave two retreats to the priests
of the Diocese of Lincoln, Nebraska, as well as a seminar on "How to Give
the Spiritual Exercises" to fifty Legionaries of Christ in Connecticut. In 1997 he directed the Diocesan priests
of Peoria, IL and of Fargo, North Dakota in their annual retreat. In 1998
he returned to the priests of Fargo as well as those in the Minneapolis/St.
Paul area. He also gave a
group of laicized Deacons their annual retreat in the Archdiocese of Chicago.
his ordination in 1961, Father McGuire has been in ever-increasing demand
as a Retreat Director, presently giving fifteen to twenty three-, five-
or eight-day retreats to lay men and women and religious in this country.
This includes retreats to teenagers and University students, too.
has been spiritual director and Retreat Master of the Y.M.I. (Youth Mission
of the Immaculata); he has lead Parish Missions and guided many in theological
classes especially covering Documents of Vatican II, the early Councils
of the Church, and some of Pope John Paul II's encyclicals. He has given numerous Days of Recollection
to all ages and genders: including the Phoenix Council of Catholic Women,
and the charismatic communities of City of the Lord in Phoenix, Arizona,
and Alleluia in Augusta, Georgia.
In 1991 he directed affiliated leaders of these communities in
an weekend retreat.
giving the closing address "Call to Holiness" in 1986 at the Mindszenty
Forum, he has been invited on numerous occasions to give sequential addresses
on the same subject matter. In
1990 this included a series of three conferences at the Phoenix Family
Conference on the "Call to Holiness of the Father", "...of the Mother",
and "...of Children", and a conference in Minnesota for "Life and Family". In 1987 he delivered a series of five-minute
spiritual talks for the bi-weekly audio cassette tape called "Catholic
Newswire" produced by Keep the Faith.
continues his ongoing contact with home schools and family‑group
schools, encouraging the courageous parents of Kolbe Academy in Napa,
California, the Trivium in Lancaster, Massachusetts, Holy Rosary Academy
in Anchorage, Alaska, Immaculatae Gratiae in Payson, and Ville
de Marie in Phoenix, Arizona, and Demontford Academy in Moorpark, California,
as well as many other home schools across the United States.
From 1990 until the Fall of 1996 he was the spiritual chaplain of the National Federation of Catholic Physicians Guild (renamed the Catholic Medical Association). During their annual business meeting in April, 1993 he led the Physicians on the Board in a half-day of Recollection. As spiritual chaplain Father may also submit articles to their Linacre Quarterly.
a special work of love is his spiritual direction of many young men and
women in their vocational decisions to the Sacred Priesthood, Religious
Life, Matrimony, and a Holy Single life in the world.
For the last twelve summers,
he has offered to interested men and women, an eight-day vocational
looks forward this year to continuing his work as Retreat Director, Spiritual
Guide and Instructor on the Nature of the Church, to the Missionaries
of Charity, Priests, Religious Sisters, children, students and many lay
men and women.
of Father McGuire's retreats are based on the Spiritual Exercises of
St. Ignatius of Loyola. His
conferences are a blend of the traditional teachings of the Catholic Church
with the teachings of the Second Vatican Council and the recent Popes,
especially Pope John Paul II, set in the philosophical and theological
crisis of our times.
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