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Rev. James R. Gallas S.J.


1931 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Rev. James R. Gallas S.J. Obituary
June 1, 1931 - September 1, 2017 Reverend James R. Gallas, S.J., died September 1, 2017 at Sacred Heart Jesuit Center, Los Gatos. He was 86 and had been a Jesuit for 68 years, a priest for 55. James was born in Los Angeles, June 1, 1931. He attended Blessed Sacrament School, Hollywood, and Loyola High School, Los Angeles, and entered the Jesuit novitiate at Los Gatos in 1949. His training took him to Spokane (MA, Philosophy, Gonzaga), and Alma College, Los Gatos, a campus of Santa Clara University, (MA, Theology). He was ordained a priest at Blessed Sacrament Church, Hollywood, in 1962. He later earned an MA in Clinical Health Education from the University for Humanistic Studies, San Diego. James' early ministry was in the high school classroom at Loyola High School, Los Angeles, as a teacher of geometry and Latin (1956-59) and Religion (1964-65). The bulk of his ministry, however, was as a parish priest and hospital chaplain. He served a vibrant African American community at Christ the King Church, San Diego, 1965-1977 as Assistant Pastor (and Pastor, 1967-1973), where the Sunday liturgies attracted a large crowd from around the area. Active in social ministry ranging from racial justice to world peace, the church did not shy away from controversy during the Vietnam War era, when it offered sanctuary to sailors protesting the war. He also served at his home parish, Blessed Sacrament, in Hollywood, from 1978-1981 and 1994-2004. Again, he was at the center of a large, active urban parish which served a multi-cultural community. In a change from parish work, James became a chaplain, first at Rosary High School, Fullerton, 1984-1985, and then at St. Joseph's Hospital, Orange, where he served from 1985 to 1993. His last posting was to the Jesuit Community in Fresno, where he ministered to the Latino community, 2005-2017. He is survived by a sister, Lillian Cannon, of Camarillo. The rosary will be at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, September 15 at Our Lady of Victory Church in Fresno. The Funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, September 16, at Our Lady of Victory Church, 2838 N. West Avenue, Fresno, CA 93705. Donations in memory of Father Gallas may be made to the California Province of the Society of Jesus, P.O. Box 68, Los Gatos, CA 95031, or to a charity of your choosing.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Sept. 9 to Sept. 13, 2017
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