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Father Jim Halloran dies at age 99

01/20/2017 | Comments

Father Jim Halloran, the oldest priest in the Diocese of Colorado Springs, died Dec. 24 at age 99 at Medallion Retirement Community. Bishop Michael Sheridan celebrated Mass of Christian Burial on Dec. 31 at St. Mary’s Cathedral.

Father Halloran was born in Bismarck, North Dakota on Dec. 13, 1917, to James and Mary Halloran. He attended Catholic schools through college, including Corpus Christi in Colorado Springs and Blessed Sacrament and St. Francis De Sales High School in Denver. After three years at Regis College, he entered St. Thomas Seminary in Denver and was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Denver on Dec. 18, 1943.

From 1944 to 1948, Father Halloran served as an assistant pastor at several parishes throughout Pueblo and Denver, including St. Patrick Parish in Pueblo and Annunciation and St. Vincent de Paul parishes in Denver. He then served as pastor for over 10 years at St. Peter Parish in Fleming. Following that assignment, Father Halloran served as pastor at St. Anthony Parish in Julesburg from 1960-1969. He then moved to Colorado Springs and became pastor of Our Lady of the Woods, St. Peter and St. Victor from June of 1969 to October of 1970.

From 1970 to 1976, Father Halloran returned to Denver to serve in the parishes of Holy Ghost and St. Rose of Lima.  He returned to Colorado Springs in 1976 to serve as pastor of St. Peter Parish in Monument and as a chaplain at Mount St. Francis until 1984 when he became pastor of Sacred Heart and St. Augustine parishes. Father Halloran retired from parish ministry in 1987, but briefly came out of retirement to act as parochial minister of St. Michael Parish in Calhan in January of 1988.

In January 2007, Father Halloran lost most of his possessions in an early-morning fire at the Castle West Apartments, where he was living at the time. After two firemen carried him out of the building, Father Brad Noonan —   who was on the scene of the deadly blaze as a fire department chaplain — drove him to the apartment of his brother, Father Joe Halloran, who was also a retired priest of the Diocese of Colorado Springs. Staff members from Catholic Charities and the diocese collected furniture, bedding and other household items to furnish a new apartment for him.

“I escaped with my wallet and car keys,” he told The Colorado Catholic Herald in an interview following the fire. “I lost my chalice, chasuble and all my other possessions.”

In 2013, on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of his priestly ordination, Father Halloran told the Herald that he fondly remembered all of his assignments, but in particular, his first assignment as a pastor at St. Peter Parish in Fleming was a unique and great experience. He recalled assisting in the harvest of the crops of a neighboring farm, helping build the parish hall and the inclusiveness of the tight-knit German Catholic community.

“I like the country places,” he said. “The country people are always so nice to you. They invite you over for fried chicken dinners.”

Father Halloran was preceded in death by his brother Joe. 

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