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November 2020

Saint Joseph's College (Indiana), a Catholic college founded and sponsored by the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, pledges itself to a tradition of excellence and to a liberal education that is a united endeavor of intelligence and faith.

Fr. Philip Gilbert Beloved Mathematics Professor

Fr. Philip Gilbert, C.PP.S., 90, died at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, October 15, 2020 in the infirmary at St. Charles Center in Carthagena, Ohio. He had been in failing health.

Fr. Gilbert was born on February 17, 1930, in Chicago, to Philip and Elizabeth (Buffa) Gilbert. He entered the Missionaries of the Precious Blood in 1949 and was ordained on May 28, 1960.

In 1961, Fr. Gilbert was appointed to education ministry at Saint Joseph’s College in Rensselaer, Ind., which is sponsored by the Missionaries of the Precious Blood. There he spent nearly five decades in ministry as a math professor at the college. During his career there, he served as chairman of the math department and was also on the college’s faculty athletic committee. He retired from teaching in 2016 and moved to St. Charles in 2017.

Preceded in death by his brother and sister-in-law, Hilary and Carol Gilbert, Fr. Gilbert was the last surviving

member of his immediate family.

Fr. Gilbert loved his life as a priest, and he also loved Saint Joseph’s College. In fact, it was love at first sight, he once said. His older brother attended the college as well as some of his friends. When he went to visit, “as soon as I saw it, I fell in love.”

His parents, Italian immigrants who changed the family name from Gilberti to Gilbert, wanted both their sons to get a college education. They were in favor when Fr. Gilbert enrolled at the college that was to become his home for most of his adult life.

While there, he served with compassion and commitment. “I wasn’t brilliant at mathematics, but I was good at it,” said the priest, always self-deprecating. His students describe him as a man devoted to both of his vocations, the priesthood and education.

He was a favorite among the faculty and staff as well, presiding at a daily midday mass in a chapel on

campus for as long as he was able—even when he had to proclaim the Gospel through a large magnifying glass.

Fr. Gilbert also helped out at parishes in the Gary Diocese and, for his Community, served several terms as district chair and the local C.PP.S. director at the college. For many years, he was the chaplain of Knights of Columbus Council 1881 in Rensselaer.

He also loved baseball, rooting for the White Sox as a boy; later in life he committed the apostasy of switching his allegiance at least in part to the Cubs. He played baseball in high school and was an excellent point guard on the school’s basketball team. “I was a hustler,” he said. “I had a knack of seeing who was open and feeding them the ball.” A teacher could be said to be a point guard too: seeing who is open and feeding them what they need. A priest, too.


Certified Clinical Medical Assistant Program Starts Two New Classes

The next two cohorts of CCMA classes began on Tuesday October 20th and Tuesday November 10th. That class is filling up quickly! Saint Joe was blessed with a great start to our certified medical programs. This class is 11-weeks and meets twice a week, four hours a day. There are eight students in the October class and seven in the November class.

The CCMA program qualifies for a Next Level Jobs grant from the state of Indiana. The Next Level Jobs program provides an opportunity for eligible Indiana residents to receive tuition-free training for careers in high-demand, high-paying jobs in areas that are in high demand. Next Level Jobs will cover the cost of tuition and required fees associated with earning the industry-recognized credentials/certificate. Many of our students have qualified for this grant.

For more information about the program, please visit


Thanksgiving Blessings

Giving Thanks

For the hay and the corn and the wheat that is reaped,

For the labor well done, and the barns that are heaped,

For the sun and the dew and the sweet honeycomb,

For the rose and the song and the harvest brought home -

Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!

For the trade and the skill and the wealth in our land,

For the cunning and strength of the workingman's hand,

For the good that our artists and poets have taught,

For the friendship that hope and affection have brought -

Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!

For the homes that with purest affection are blest,

For the season of plenty and well-deserved rest,

For our country extending from sea unto sea;

The land that is known as the "Land of the Free" -

Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!

--- Author Unknown

We are thankful for all of you! Happy Thanksgiving from the Saint Joseph’s College Staff and Board of Trustees.


Contact Us

Saint Joseph’s College PO Box 300 Rensselaer, IN 47978

Phone: 219-866-6000 ext 2014

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