Monsignor Oliver F. Johnson
January 10, 1937 – October 7, 2019
Rev. Msgr. Oliver F. Johnson, a Catholic priest for 57 years, died on October 7, 2019 in Austin, Texas at the age of 82. He was born on January 10, 1937 in Carlow, Ireland to Michael and Mary (Malone) Johnson. He received his education from the Irish Christian Brothers at Carlow and completed his studies at St. Patrick’s Seminary.
Msgr. Johnson was ordained for the Diocese of Southwork in Ireland on June 9, 1962. He had served in Ireland and England as well as in the missions of South America with the Irish Columban Fathers. He came to the Diocese of Austin in 1968 and was incardinated in 1970. In the Diocese of Austin, he served in the parishes of St. Mary of the Assumption in West, St. Mary in Taylor, St. Louis King of France in Austin, St. Luke in Temple, Christ the King in Belton, and was the founding pastor of St. Catherine of Siena in Austin, from which he retired in 2008. He was also director of the Diocesan Family Life Program, was a member of the diocesan Senate, Priests’ Personnel Committee and the Committee for Continuing Education of Priests. In 2001 he received the title of “Chaplain to His Holiness” by Pope John Paul II.
Msgr. Johnson was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Renee and his brothers Michael, Donal, Patrick, Harry, Clarence and Sean. Visitation will be held at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church, 4800 Convict Hill Rd., Austin on October 13 at 6:30 p.m.; Vigil and Rosary follows at 7:30 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on October 14 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church. Internment will follow at Cook-Walden/Forest Oaks Funeral Home and Memorial Park, 6300 W. William Cannon Dr., Austin. Reception will follow the internment at St. Catherine of Siena. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church.
- St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church
- Visitation and Rosary Sunday, October 13, 2019
- Mass of Christian Burial Monday, October 14, 2019
- Interment Monday, October 14, 2019
- Reception Following Services Monday, October 14, 2019
Monsignor Oliver F. Johnson
October 16, 2019
My family left Austin in 2002, but I still think of Fr Oliver often.
He could be stern and demanding, but I most frequently remember him with his impish grin!
I'll never forget him admonishing the congregation to turn off our phones at the beginning of mass one Sunday, only to have his ring later in the service. I never knew a person could turn so red 😁
He left me with two sayings, that probably were not original from him, but he is attached to them in my memory.
"My job is to comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable"
"If you want to get something done, ask someone who is busy to do it"
Rest In Peace - and thanks for all you did for us.
October 14, 2019
Fr. Johnson was a very special man. We became members of St. Catharine of Siena's parish in 1981, and were considered foundling members. Our memories of Fr Oliver are so numerous that a list would take a book. Trips to Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal, eastern Europe were some of the highlights. I was so proud to have been able to see first hand his boy hood home and where he was ordained a priest. We helped build every building on the property, broke ground in "Chiger Heaven" when the first parish hall was started, and were present when many parishonioners were laid to rest. He will be among many friends at Cook Walden cemetery. Clyde and I, too, when the time comes.
Rest in peace, dear friend. Enjoy your well earned heavenly reward. God bless you. Please remember and watch over us. Goodbye.
Dolly and Clyde Simeroth
October 12, 2019
Our thoughts and prayers to Fr. Oliver's family and his St. Catherine's family. It was an honor to know him.
Dolores "Scottie" Mills
October 11, 2019
Father Oliver was a holy and faithful man of God. I am eternally grateful for his kindness, friendship and love. May Father Oliver, with all the saints, rest in peace.
October 10, 2019
Father Ollie married my wife and I. I have a picture of him in a leprechaun outfit, complete with green leprechaun shoes. It was taken at one of his St Patrick parties. He took a great interest in his congregation, often showing us the right way.
A very demanding, yet friendly, pastor, he made sure things were done right. Case in point, each wedding has something go wrong. When Fr Ollie married us, Mr Rocky Carr did the readings. Fr Ollie stopped him, found a more appropriate reading and had Mr Carr read it. They say a mistake in a wedding is a sign of good luck. Even though we do not believe in coincidence or anything similar, the fact is thanks to Fr Ollie, that change in our wedding was the catalyst for the happy 28 years we've spent so far, with many more to come.
THANK YOU FATHER OLIVER & MAY GOD KEEP YOU IN THE PALM OF HIS HAND.
Verna Lee Carr
October 10, 2019
Since 1981 our family was blessed to have had Msgr. Oliver not only as our spiritual leader but also as a treasured dear friend who shared the good times as well as difficult times with us. He was committed to God and his faith and when he spoke it was with wisdom, authority and humility. What a magnificent yet humble man of God. Our loss is heaven’s gain. Well done to a good and faithful servant!
October 8, 2019
I heard my first" Ollie sermon " on the Memorial Day weekend in May of '75. It was all in Spanish, but he noticed me in the back row and went over the salient points again since I appeared clueless. His relevant and well prepared homilies were what we most apprciated. To this day, he is the only pastor to ever just drop by to welcome us and have a drink. How fortunate we were that he chose the priesthood over his other ambition, being a pub singer. He was always a tender hearted minister with a great sense of humor. My wife Karen and I will never forget him.
October 8, 2019
Even though I anticipate most that will read this are parishioners ( or former which I am), I wanted to express some thoughts after reflecting on “Father Ollie” ( as I knew him).
From the first time that I ever met him (when a group of us, many with young families, were the original parishioners of St Catherine’s), he influenced me greatly to this day about 40 years later. While he was a very passionate man about carrying out his pastoral duties, a couple of traits always came to fore- he was loving/caring and insightful. He had lead the parish to being quite successful when we left Austin 30 years ago. I have very fond memories of our family’s years at St Catherine’s.
God Bless His Soul.