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OBITUARY | Father Paul Golden, CM

Fr. Golden
A funeral Mass for Father Paul Golden, CM, was celebrated Jan. 24 at the Mary, Mother of God Chapel in Apostle of Charity Residence in Perryville. Father Golden died Jan. 20 at the age of 85.

Paul Lloyd Golden was born on Jan. 4, 1939, to Julia Lee (Clemens) Golden and Dr. John Henry Golden in San Francisco. He was one of eight children and was baptized by and named in honor of a family friend, Father Paul Lloyd, a Vincentian priest who served as a missionary to China.

After graduating from St. Emydius Elementary School in San Francisco, he was invited by his namesake, Father Lloyd, to visit St. Vincent’s College, a Vincentian high school seminary in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, and meet the faculty there. Young Paul Golden immediately decided that he wanted to attend, and his parents gave their consent. He graduated in 1956 and began studies that prepared him for priesthood, beginning at St. Mary’s of the Barrens in Perryville, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy, then DeAndreis Seminary in Lemont, Illinois, where he earned his master’s in divinity.

In May 1956, Paul entered the novitiate of the Congregation of the Mission. At the end of his senior year at St. Mary’s of the Barrens, he professed permanent vows with the congregation. He was ordained a transitional deacon in St. Louis on Sept. 19, 1964, by Bishop George Gottwald. At the conclusion of his theological studies, Deacon Golden was ordained to the priesthood on May 27, 1965, at St. Vincent de Paul Church in Los Angeles, by Bishop John Ward.

Shortly after his ordination, Father Golden was sent to Rome, where he completed his licentiate in canon law at the Pontifical Gregorian University and his juris doctorate in canon law at St. Thomas University (Angelicum).

His priestly assignments were primarily in institutes of higher learning. He was a professor of canon law at Kenrick Seminary in St. Louis; president-rector of St. Thomas Theological Seminary in Denver; associate vice president and vice president of DePaul University in Chicago; president of Niagara University in New York; and taught canon law at St. Mary’s University in Minnesota. He was an instructor in the religious studies department at the University of Dayton, Ohio, was a consultor to the National Organization for Continuing Education of Roman Catholic Clergy and was a frequent presenter on the topic of canon law throughout the United States.

Father Golden had a great passion for those who needed assistance navigating canon law. In 2000, he founded Vincentian Canonical Services and served as its director until his death. He helped many priests who needed the services of a canon lawyer, especially those who did not have access to good support. He continued to do this in his private practice until just a few weeks before his death. In 2005, he received the distinguished Role of Law Award from the Canon Law Society of America, an organization for which he had served as secretary, vice president and president.

Father Golden loved his family. During his mother’s final illness, he was very grateful to be allowed to take time out from his studies in Rome to come back to California and spend time with her and his family during her final weeks.

He is survived by three brothers, Robert, Soham and Michael, a sister Margaret and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews, friends and members of the Congregation of the Mission.

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OBITUARY Father Paul Golden CM 9325

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