Saint Joseph's College seminary
began as a part of Saint Patrick's Seminary in Menlo Park,
California, in 1898 where candidates for the Catholic priesthood were
educated in a 12–year seminary program. Due to considerable expansion
in the early part of the
last century, Saint Joseph's College was built and opened as a separate
school in 1924 in the foothills of Mountain View-Cupertino, California.
The program included the four years of high school plus the first
two years of college education, preparing candidates
for admission to the major seminary at St. Patrick's.
The college was placed under the direction of the Sulpician Fathers,
a society founded in Paris, France,
and specially organized for training of aspirants to the
priesthood. St. Joseph's grew to become one of the largest college
seminaries in the United States.
In 1968, St. Joseph's assumed responsibility for
the four years of high school and four years of college.
The high school program was discontinued in 1980.
The Saint Joseph's College seminary became a part
of the newly formed Diocese of San Jose in 1981.
The seminary buildings were damaged beyond repair by the Loma Prieta
earthquake on October 17, 1989.
Students and faculty relocated to a commercial building in Santa Clara
for a while, but the local bishop decided to close the college
on June 30, 1991.
Alumni News and Events:
New updates added on: 11/7/2018
For details, see below
By now any former seminarian, who belongs to the SemNet, has heard the news that
Most Reverend Richard Garcia died on July 11, 2018.
Click on the In Memorium button at the top of this home page to see some
of the wonderful tributes for this former classmate, this priestly shepherd of his flock, this very
holy and inspirational man.
Note: The In Memorium page is listed in alphabetical order by last name, and it contains two groups:
(1) our teachers, and (2) our fellow students/friends. .
NEWS FLASH: Next year's Alumni Day will be held on Saturday, May 11, 2019,
which is a bit later than our usual April date. Mark your calendars - don't we all have our 2019 calendar?
Dennis McQuaid has already sent an e-mail to his Rhet'1959 class - their 60th anniversary - WOW.
Our Alumni Day 2018 was a lot of fun. Check out this Rhet 1959 table.
Tables, reserved by class years, were borderline boisterous and filled with lively conversations.
Many photographs were clicked and the food service was terrific.
Don Carroll and Peter Franzi, the co-chairs for this year's event did a great job putting the pieces together.
Don reported to the alumni board that 165 dinners were sold, which was down a little bit from last year.
Class members from 1958, 1968, 1978 and 1973 were celebrated.
The Alumni Day information page is still available here; to see it,
(click here - 2018)
The class celebration dates of our Alumni Days go back in time. This inspired me to do some archeological digging myself.
So I reached back 80 years - scanned and uploaded an SJC Alumni Newsletter from November 1938.
You will find this if you click on the The Newsletter (button) at the top of this home page.
I have also added "The Blow" (1959), and another Alumni Newsletter dated June 1940.
Thank you Pat Cloherty for discovering these relics.
In the same vein, but over on the Memoirs page (another button up at the top),
I added 2 new books to our collection on this page: by Brian Cahill, R'60 and John Michael Sheehan, H'71.
(Note: Brian also has an article in the 1959 Blow newsletter)
A Sports Hall of Fame
During our May 24, 2018 Alumni Board meeting, Mike Sheehan, H’71, proposed some of his ideas about a “Sports Hall of Fame” for our school. He described several of his thoughts and he received a unanimous approval from the board. His generation at St. Joe’s produced annual yearbooks, and Mike showed us a set of yearbooks that contain a lot of photographs and other useful information. Mike quickly put together a committee of 6 volunteers who will help brainstorm a plan which will be discussed at our September board meeting. His team’s goal is to enhance our Alumni Days with the addition of some sport’s theme awards.
Sept. 20, 2018 meeting: Mike and his committee recommended that a note be broadcast to our alumni announcing the
establishment of a "sports achievement award." They have written a set of eligibility rules and they are now soliciting awardees.
The current plan will begin in Sept. 2019 with an initial event. Then in 2020 the sports awards will become a part of our annual alumni day.
If you want to contact Mike about this and/or join in this discussion, please send a note to me (Chuck) and I will get you in touch with Mike. To do this, use the “contact us” envelope icon at the top of this page. We have a policy of not posting “live” or “clickable” e-mail addresses anywhere at this web site.
A March meeting surprise
Our Alumni Board meets quarterly and our spring meeting usually occurs in March. We have noticed that something very unusual happens if per chance we select a date near, or on, St. Patrick’s Day. The best way, maybe the only way, to describe this apparition is to reveal it with a single photograph:
(click here - March meeting photo)
Tributes to our Sulpician teachers
4988 students were educated, influenced and inspired by the Sulpician Fathers
at the Saint Joseph's Seminary College, 1920 - 1994. A 4 page tribute has been
created in honor of our teachers. Using numerous photographs and a
year-by-year enrollment summary, we show our appreciation for the work of these
dedicated men. You will enjoy this document!
To see this printable Sulpician historical tribute
(click here - Sulp)
More tributes were written last year as the Sulpician Fathers moved away from California
and St. Patricks Seminary/University.
Rev. Ronald Witherup. PSS, the Superior General of the Sulpician Fathers, spent eleven years
on the faculty of St. Patricks. He writes about his memories in his letter of adieu.
(click here - Father Ron) Father Gladstone Stevens, PSS, the President/Rector of St. Patrick's Seminary/University (2014 2017),
speaks from his heart in this letter published in the Patrician magazine.
(click here - Father Gladstone) Father Roger Gustatson, speaks about his proud legacy as a
graduate of St. Patrick's Seminary/University,
(click here - Father Roger)
The prayer service and luncheon document is large (4 pages) and colorful (some great photographs).
It might be a bit slower to open up than the other pages cited above. Enjoy!
(click here - Patrician)
Bob Gorman loaned this 1952 picture to me to scan and add to our web site collection.
To see the enlarged picture, and the names written on the back,
(click here - 1952 Bears)
Many photographs were added to our website's
Photo Gallery in 2013.
Click on the button at the top of this page
and explore the various picture folders.
We begin this new year by adding some class graduation picture plates.
I have scanned 5 years: 1951, 1957, 1959, 1960 and 1961.
I placed this collection near the top of the Photo Gallery.
We now have approximately 950 total pictures in the Photo Gallery.
In additiion, There are many more photographs on other pages at this website.
They reside behind the buttons, mouse clicks and locations waiting
to be explored. Too many to count - except that I do know that
the slide show (above) contains 37 pictures.
This is a valuable resource for us former seminarians.
SemNet is not an internet location or a website;
It is an e-mail hub of activity.
As its name states, is it a network - and a marvelous one too.
Former classmates have been writing and distributing e-mail messages about their
halcyon days at St. Joseph's on this SemNet, plus some news and commentaries about current events.
So you don't go to the SemNet; it comes to you (via e-mail).
All you have to do is subscribe to it
by contacting Tom Sheehan. He will want your class year, your team affiliation, and your laundry number. Easy!
The class of 1961, while preparing for their Alumni Day
celebration in 2011, gave us a beautiful artifact.
Paul Feyen and his classmates constructed special website with memorabilia
that all of us former students can enjoy.
Just click here on:
and enjoy browsing!
Another interesting web site wase created by the class of 1957.
This class also gathered some fascinating memorabilia
from their years at Saint Joseph's College. This can be seen at
Two other classes, 1958 and 1962, once had websites.
These no longer appear to be working.
If I am wrong, will somebody please let me know? Thanks.
I am experimenting with our school website being able to link into
some video material. For starters, lets try these three.
Each video should pop up in a separate window, which you can close when
you are done viewing. Enjoy!
Greg McAllister, R'61 has sent a link to the class of 1961 reunion video.
It is titled "The boys who would be Priests" and is delightful to view.
Plus, it brings back plenty of memories.
One side effect is that this video will cause some of us former students
to ponder the the impact of seminary life upon our own journey.
It runs about 14 minutes. Enjoy!
Just click on:
1961 Class reunion video
Fr. Maurice O'Neil gives a tour of St. Joseph's College
after the Loma Prieta earthquake of 1989 destroyed our school.
Mark Mosher, C'1983, sent this video in two parts.
Fr. O'Neil tour, part 1
(15 minutes) and then
Fr. O'Neil tour, part 2 (12 minutes)
These videos provide a very detailed look at a lot of rooms in their damaged state, plus many exterior views too.
Commentary is provided by Fr. Maurice O'Neil. It is kind of sad to watch, but you can certainly see how much
Fr. O'Neil loved the place.
Thank you Greg, and thank you Mark! You two have inspired me to learn some new website stuff (videos).
Website updates, recent history details: 1/6/2018 updates : Contacts (button) page:
Removed Jim Murphy (with a quiet prayer);
Inserted Don Carroll and Tom Dillon.
Calendar (button) page:
Updated the dates to cover 2018
Backed up the prior home page as of 1/8/2018.
Began to update (clean house.....) working top-down.
1/10/2018 updates : Calendar, button - added more dates and
Contacts (the tiny envelope icon) pages needed a fix.
4/24/2018 updates : Memoirs (button) - added 2 more books: Brian Cahill and John Michael Sheehan
Home Page (button) pages needed a fix.
Home Page Added text and a 4 page tribute to our Sulpician Fathers/Teachers.
Home Page Extracted the Mass for deceased alumni (photograph and names);
put it on a single page and inserted this page into the In Memoriam section.
4/30/2018 updates :
The Newsletter (button) - scanned and inserted three newsletters:
"The Alumni Bulletin" from 1940 and 1938, plus another "The Blow," (1960)
5/26/2018 updates :
The Home Page - inserted Tom Dillon's photograph, and on
the Message from our president page - I inserted the "passing of the gavel" ceremony(?)
from Jack Sutcliff to the new president, Tom Dillon. This includes a group picture.
of the current Alumni Board.
7/2/2018 updates :
The Home Page - Inserted Mike Sheehan's "Sports Hall of Fame" proposal to our board.
7/5/2018 updates :
The Home Page - Scanned 4 additional Sulpician tributes; tried to introduce each segment.
7/9/2018 updates :
The Home Page - Inserted the 4 "adieu" files, with accompanying text info.
7/10/2018 clean-up :
The Home Page - proof reading and clarifying some of the text.
7/11/2018 clean-up :
The Home Page - Rewrote the first two paragraphs (Alumni Day) and old newsletters.
The Home Page - announce the 2019 Alumni Day; The date was set today.
The Calendar Page - updated the page behind this button - new dates.
The Home Page - Added a picture; the Rhet-1959 dinner table; 2018 Alumni Day.
The Home Page - rewording, clarify stuff
The Calendar Page - Changed dates through 2019,
which we set at our 9/20/2018 Alumni Board meeting.
The Home Page - Added text & picture; Spring meeting in March - Leprechaun
The Home Page - Inserted M. Sheehan's on-going "sports awards" work; based upon
his 9/20/2018 report to the alumni board.
2018 Next to do :
Bishop Garcia material is gone from our home page (His Day of Rec is over); move these docs into
Memoirs for long term access and storage. Add his Day of Rec outline and pictures.
He was at St. Catherine's 1973 - 1977
find his obit to post
2018 Alumni Day - add picture pages, etc. (w/o pics, it gets boring.....)
Add more pics (earthquake, alum days, days of rec, class plates, etc.) into Photo Gallery
Somehow post my photo index file (a work in progress) that lists all pictures at this web site(!?!)
Class lists from 1920 to 1959 are on this website--- click the Alumni button. I need to complete these lists from 1960 to 1994.
Add Don Osuna's book to Memoirs
Ditto Don Kohles Rambler book.
Day of Recoll. history page needs to be updated, with pictures when/if available.
Also the alum of the year list needs to be updated.
Does a 1977 yearbook exist? (#77-123, Scurlock)
The rock - new pictures.
Resolve B. Gorman's pop quiz - move this into photo gallery.