By Colleen Rowan
ELKINS—Although he spent a short time in Elkins, the late Father Mark Gallipeau is fondly remembered by the people, the parishes, and the Knights of Columbus Council #603.
“While Father Mark was the parish priest at St. Brendan’s and the chaplain of Council #603 for only a very brief time, his impact on the knights, the parish and the community was profoundly positive,” said Rob Phillips, grand knight of the council. “By all accounts, he loved the faith, was a joy to be around and worked ceaselessly for the benefit of the parish.”
Father Gallipeau was appointed as the 12th pastor of St. Brendan’s and of St. Patrick’s in Coalton in 2016. He was also vicar forane of the Weston Vicariate, served the diocese as a vocations promoter, and was friar of the Our Lady of the Mountains Assembly (chaplains to 4th Degree Knights of Columbus).
Father Gallipeau graduated from Franciscan University of Steubenville and attended St. Vincent’s Seminary in Latrobe, Pa. He was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston June 4, 2006, at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Wheeling, and served at a number of parishes in West Virginia before becoming the pastor of St. Brendan’s and St. Patrick’s.
Father Gallipeau died at the age of 61 on April 25, 2017. He is buried at St. Brendan Cemetery located beside the church he once served so well.
Following his death, the Elkins council wanted to do something in memory of their beloved chaplain, and so they established the Father Mark T. Gallipeau Memorial Scholarship, which Phillips said “is an effort by the knights to remember him and encourage the youth of our parishes to follow in his footsteps by not only achieving academically, but also by demonstrating a commitment to the church, their school, and the broader community.”
Council #603 established the Father Mark T. Gallipeau Memorial Scholarship in 2018. Each year since then, the scholarship has been awarded to an active Catholic high school senior who is a member of Holy Rosary Parish in Buckhannon, St. Patrick’s, or St. Brendan’s.
Council 603 Financial Secretary Jay Saseen said the scholarship is a great way to remember Father Gallipeau.
“He was loved by all those he met and served. And he enjoyed serving them, as he touched their hearts and souls with his gentle, caring smile,” Saseen said. “The … scholarship has been designed to remember father’s kindness and to continue to help the youth of our parishes.”
The scholarship is for $2,000, divided into four, $500 payments over four years as long as the student is enrolled full-time in an accredited four-year, two-year, or technical program in the United States.
“The Father Mark T. Gallipeau Memorial Scholarship is intended to recognize a Catholic student, high school senior, who has demonstrated commitment to their school, church, community and exhibited academic achievement,” council officials said.
More information about the scholarship and applications can be downloaded at https://stbrendanwv. weebly.com.
The deadline for applications for this year is April 26.
Elkins Knights of Columbus Scholarship Honors Memory of Beloved Priest
By Colleen Rowan