Father Robert Galinac, chaplain for the diocese, dies at 78

CHARLESTON—Franciscan Father Robert G. Galinac died April 30, 2021. He was 78 years old.

A prayer vigil will be held on May 6 at 5 p.m., followed by a rosary at 6:30 p.m. at St. Peter Church, 70 Lady’s Island Drive in Beaufort. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on May 7 at 11 a.m. at St. Peter. Burial will be in Chicago.

He was born on July 4, 1942, in Harrisburg, Pa.

Father Galinac

Father Galinac belonged to the Croatian Franciscan Custody of the Holy Family from Chicago, Ill. He professed solemn vows on Aug. 15, 1964, and was ordained a priest Dec. 22, 1969. He often spoke of his first assignments ministering to soldiers during the Vietnam War and how emotionally difficult it was, but rewarding to be there for them.

He worked in various schools and parishes throughout the United States before being assigned to the Diocese of Charleston, where he served as a chaplain to St. Francis Hospital in Greenville from 1997-1998, and at the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort from 2007-2018.

Prior to coming to South Carolina, Father Galinac fulfilled various roles, serving as assistant pastor at St. Anthony’s Parish in Sharon before moving to Wheaton, Ill., where he taught religion at St. Francis High School. He remained in Wheaton until 1974 and then was transferred to Our Lady of Peace Friary in Beaver Falls, where he taught at Quigley High School until 1978. He then served as assistant pastor of Sacred Heart in Milwaukee from 1986-1987 and as pastor at St. Anthony’s in Sharon from 1987-1989, Holy Trinity in Ambridge from 1989-1994, and St. Joseph’s in Bethlehem from 1994-1997.

Following his time as a chaplain at St. Francis Hospital in Greenville he was assigned as pastor at St. Augustine’s in West Allis from 1999-2000, and as assistant pastor at St. Joseph parish in St. Louis from 2002 to 2007. He also served on the Custodial Board for one term, covering 1985-1988.

Father Galinac returned to the Diocese of Charleston in 2007, where he served until his retirement as a chaplain for the U.S. Marines at the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort.

Father Galinac recently celebrated his 50th jubilee in December 2019, and spoke to The Miscellany from the Carter May Home in Charleston, where he retired. Read the article from The Catholic Miscellany, written in honor of Father Galinac’s 50th jubilee.

Messages of condolence may be sent to the Croatian Franciscan Friars at 4848 S Ellis Ave., Chicago, Ill., 60615.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Croatian Franciscan Custody of the Holy Family.