Father Dan: Our Chaplain, Our Guide, Our Friend
For over five years, Father Dan has graciously served as Kelly Catholic High School’s chaplain, bringing the love of Christ to the campus every week. Now, as he recovers from his illness, we keep him in our prayers and recognize the gift of his presence.
Since his retirement in 2015, Father Dan has served at our school, embodying every aspect of what a spiritual guide should be. He makes a point of being involved, often standing in the halls just to offer greetings to any who pass. Throughout the years, many students have come to him for advice, Confession, or comfort, finding assurance in his wisdom and peace. At Kelly’s periodic celebration of Mass, Father Dan always brings a new and insightful meaning to the Scripture, and out in the stands, he’s a loyal and passionate fan of our teams.
As timeless as it feels, Father Dan’s life in the ministry extends far beyond Kelly. Having gone to St. Anthony’s as an adolescent, he returned to Beaumont in 1986, where he served in St. Anne’s, St. James, and then in St. Charles. There, he pastored for two decades - the longest tenure next to that of the parish’s founder. At St. Charles, he buried and baptized literally thousands of people, along with welcoming 540 new members and marrying 400 couples.
On top of this, Father Dan carries an impressive list of accreditation. He has completed Protestant studies at a Louisville Baptist seminary, doctoral studies from the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago, and a religious education master’s from St. Thomas University in Houston. To cap it off, he earned a doctorate from the Graduate Theological Foundation in Donaldson, Indiana in pastoral counseling, and, in 2009, he was given the title of Monsignor by Pope Benedict XVI.
Formidable records and titles aside, the sheer grace of Father Dan’s presence is widely felt, both in the Kelly community and in the Beaumont diocese at large. As Gina Harris, the head of Kelly’s theological department, put it - he is, “accessible, kind, and absolutely non-judgmental.” We appreciate all that Father Dan has done and earnestly pray for his recovery.