Father Vincent P. Mallon, MM
Born: December 23, 1909
Ordained: September 24, 1933
Died: August 4, 1989
Father Vincent Patrick Mallon died at Westchester County Medical Center, Valhalla, NY on August 4, 1989. He was nearly 80 years old and a priest for 56 years.
Vincent was born Dec. 23, 1909, in Brooklyn, NY, the sixth child of nine to Joseph and Elizabeth Rice Mallon. It was a distinguished Irish Catholic Family in Brooklyn. One of his aunts became Assistant Superior General of the Religious of Our Lady of the Cenacle, Paris, France. Another sister, Elizabeth, was a Religious of the Cenacle in Ronkonkoma, NY, and a younger sister is a Sister of St. Joseph. His cousin, Vincent T. Mallon, is the Director of St. Teresa’s Residence. His early schooling was in Brooklyn. He entered the Venard in 1926 and was ordained on Sept. 24, 1933, a year before his class. He was one of the first group ordained by Bishop James A. Walsh. He was assigned to Rome for further studies and secured a Licentiate in Theology and in Sacred Scripture. While in Rome, in the absence of Fr. McGurkin, Fr. Mallon served as acting Rector of the Collegio and was sent to Greece to accompany Fr. James Drought who had suffered severe injuries in a plane crash.
Upon his return to the States in 1938 he was assigned to the Faculty of the Venard where he carried a heavy load of duties teaching Scripture, Latin, English, Religion, Gregorian Chant, Moderator of Dramatics, Spiritual Director, Librarian, Vice Rector and confessor for the Sisters.
His first mission assignment in 1944 was to Quintana Roo, Yucatan. He was good in Spanish and soon became Pastor of Peto. He kept up his serious academic studies, taught in the major seminary in Merida and was nicknamed “The Professor”. In 1948 he was assigned to the Faculty at Maryknoll Center to teach Dogma, Sacred Scripture and Sacramental Theology. He was a first-class teacher who made his students study hard.
In 1951 Fr. Mallon was again assigned to Mexico, under Bishop Escalante, to help in developing the new Mexican Foreign Mission Seminary of the Guadalupe Missioners. He was known for his ability to analyze a situation and quite vocal in articulating the problem. After 2 years at the seminary he was named Group Superior of the Maryknollers in Yucatan and moved to the Center House in Merida. He served for two terms and had the respect of the men and associated well with them. He became Pastor of the Parish of San Sebastian and continued teaching in the local seminary, encouraging the Rector in promoting local vocations.
In 1957 he was recalled to Maryknoll Center and appointed Vice Rector and professor of Scripture, Liturgy and Hebrew. He also found time to write articles for Our Sunday Visitor and the Biblical Quarterly. His Rector wrote of him as “very steady, well balanced and objective in his judgments; firm but kind.” As the changes following Vatican Council II began to occur, he kept a sane, balanced attitude in favor of traditional ways. He was a knowledgeable liturgist and in 1964 made the first English translation of the original Constitution on the Liturgy and the Norms for the Implementation of the Constitution, with a commentary. During the period of unauthorized experimentation after the Council the deviations from the Church’s official public prayer deeply distressed him. Gradually he developed a style of seminar teaching which made him more accessible and effective with the students. He requested to return to the missions and was again assigned to Yucatan in 1973. This assignment was healthy for him and he fitted in well with the other Maryknollers in Mexico. He was elected First Chapter Delegate to the 1978 Chapter, after which he was in charge of the Merida Center House while continuing to teach in the local seminary. His health continued good and he was content to remain active in the Region.
But, as the years passed, his physical health began to decline and he returned to the States in 1985. Remaining a member of the Mexico Region he lived at St. Teresa’s for 4 years and died peacefully in his sleep at the Westchester Medical Center.
Wake services were held at St. Teresa’s and the Center Chapel on August 7. Mass of Christian Burial was offered the next day with his cousin, Fr. Vincent T., as main celebrant and Fr. John Coholan, MM as Homilist. Interment was in the Center cemetery.