David Power, OMI
December 14, 1932 – June 19, 2014
Fr. David Noel Power, OMI, 81, died on June 19, 2014. He was born on December 14, 1932, in Dublin, Ireland, the son of the late David and Kathleen (Davis) Power. Considered by many as one of the foremost sacramental theologians in North America, Fr. Power died in Washington, D.C., where he lived for many years.
Fr. Power entered the Oblate Novitiate in Chermoyle, Ireland, where he made his first vows in 1950. He made his perpetual vows in Roviano, Italy, in 1954, and was ordained a priest in Rome, Italy, on December 22, 1956. He obtained his doctorate in theology from the Pontifical Institute of Liturgy at the Pontifical University of St. Anselmo in Rome in 1968.
Fr. Power taught theology at the Oblate seminary in Piltown, Ireland, from 1957 to 1971, as well as at the Milltown Institute of Philosophy and Theology, Dublin, and at Maynooth, the diocesan major seminary. During those years, he served as superior of the Oblate scholasticate; after that, he was also superior of the International Scholasticate in Rome. While in the Eternal City, he taught at the Gregorian University and St Thomas Aquinas University. In 1977, he was appointed Professor in the School of Theology and Religious Studies at Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. During his tenure there, he was appointed the Shakespeare Caldwell Davel Distinguished Professor and subsequently became Chairman of the theology department.
Fr. Power was elected president of the North American Academy of Religion and lectured throughout the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, the Philippines, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Zaire. In 1992 he received the Berakah Award of the North American Academy of Liturgy. In 1996 he was honored with the John Courtney Murray award of the Catholic Theological Society of America for excellence in the field of theological scholarship. He authored numerous scholarly, practical, and pastoral books in the field of liturgical theology, and he contributed many articles to various theological publications. He was a member of Concilium, a post-Conciliar international journal of theology.
He was a visiting professor at the diocesan seminary in Tahiti (2001-2002). He was also a visiting professor in Ottawa, Canada (2002), and at the Oblate seminary in Zambia (2010-2011). He returned to the Oblate community in Washington, DC, where he lived until his death.
The Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at 11:00 am on Thursday, June 26, 2014, at the chapel of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Residence, Tewksbury, Massachusetts. The committal took place at the Oblate cemetery at Immaculate Heart of Mary Residence.