NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Rev. Joseph Peter Browne, C.S.C., 87, died at Holy Cross House, Notre Dame, Ind. on Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016.
He was born the eldest of four children to George and Mary (Fahy) Browne on June 12, 1929, in Detroit, Mich. He graduated from De LaSalle Collegiate High School in 1946. Later that summer, he entered the University of Notre Dame and was received into the Congregation on Aug. 15, 1947. Fr. Browne professed first vows on Aug. 16, 1948, and returned to Notre Dame, graduating in 1951.
Fr. Browne studied theology at Holy Cross College, Washington, D.C., and he was ordained to the priesthood in Detroit by Edward Cardinal Mooney on June 4, 1955 with his brother George who was a seminarian in the Archdiocese of Detroit. After assisting at Holy Cross Parish, South Bend, from 1955-1956, he went to Rome to do graduate work in theology at the Angelicum, receiving his S.T.L. in 1957 and an S.T.D. in October 1960. He returned to teach theology at Holy Cross College from 1959-1964. Fr. Browne was assigned to live at the Foreign Mission Seminary in Washington in 1961. He took classes at the Catholic University, which led to a master’s degree in Library Science in May 1965.
In September 1964, Fr. Browne was assigned to the University of Portland, where he served as Chairman of the Department of Library Science and Director of the Wilson Clark Memorial Library. In June 1973, Fr. Browne became Chairman of the Department of Library Science at Our Lady of the Lake College in San Antonio, Texas, where he served until 1975. He returned to Portland where he was again Director of the Library until he retired in 1994. He then became Pastor of St. Birgitta parish in Portland for more than a decade. During his many years in Portland, he was also a member of the Presbyteral Council and the College of Consultors of the Archdiocese of Portland. He also served as vicar for the Columbia County Vicariate. Fr. Browne was a nationally recognized expert in the field of parliamentary procedure. He was an active member of the Knights of Columbus and served as chaplain to five separate councils, among a number of other duties. After suffering a stroke in September 2004, he moved back to the Holy Cross Community at the University of Portland. He moved to Holy Cross House in 2009.
Preceding him in death are his parents, George and Mary Browne; and his brother Rev. George T. Browne. He is survived by two sisters: Sr. Maria Goretti, OP of Adrian, Michigan, and Teresa Browne of Fletcher, North Carolina.
Visitation will be from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, November 3, 2016, at Moreau Seminary, Notre Dame, IN, where there will be a Wake Service at 7:30 p.m. The Funeral Mass will be at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart on the Notre Dame campus on Friday, November 4, 2016 at 3:30 p.m. Burial will be in the community cemetery at Notre Dame. Kaniewski Funeral Home, South Bend, is in charge of the arrangements.
Memorial contributions in support of the mission and ministries of the Congregation of Holy Cross can be made to: United States Province of Priests and Brothers, Office of Development, P.O. Box 765, Notre Dame, IN 46556.