Father David O’Brien, OMI 1932-2020
Father David Edward O’Brien, OMI, died July 14, 2020, surrounded by his fellow Oblates in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Father O’Brien was born in Buffalo on Sept. 30, 1932, the son of Edward and Laura O’Brien, and brother of Eileen, Mary Elizabeth and Laura all who predeceased him.
He attended Holy Angels and Annunciation grammar schools and Holy Angels Collegiate Institute, from which he graduated on June 23, 1950, at the head of his class.
He then entered the Oblate Juniorate Preparatory School in Newburgh, followed by admittance to Immaculate Heart of Mary Novitiate in Ipswich, where he received the habit and began his novitiate on Sept. 7, 1952.
He professed his first vows on Sept. 8, 1953. Because of his scholastic aptitude was sent to the Oblate Scholasticate in Rome to begin studies in 1954. He remained in Rome for seven years and was ordained a priest there on July 12, 1959.
In 1960, Father O’Brien began his 60 years of service, evangelization and bringing the good news of Christ to the poor and marginalized in Brazil. He served in numerous parishes and formation houses throughout Brazil including Sao Paulo, Pocos de Caldas, Rio Grande do Sul, Cidade Dutra, Salvador, Recife and Goiania. He also served many years as a member of the provincial council
In February 2020, the pre-novitiate house in Goiania was named the Reverend David O’Brien OMI Pre-Novitiate House in his honor.
Father O’Brien was loved and treasured by his nieces and nephews, Anne Byrne, Jim (Rebecca) Conboy, Eileen (Jeff) Stone, and David (Karen) Conboy, as well as numerous great nieces and nephews and great-great nieces and nephews.
A memorial Mass commemorating Father O’Brien’s life was celebrated on Aug. 8 at St. Stephen Church, Grand Island.