Dear Editor: When Father Paul Wood passed away last week, (“Chaplain at Queens College Remembered,” Obituaries, Feb 8, 2020) Queens College lost a part of its history. I am the “unofficial historian“ of the college, and I can say that without fear of contradiction.
The college has had a chaplain since it opened in 1937. I am a member of the class of 1955, and I returned to the college in 1986 to direct commencements and special events. I was one of the very first to greet Father Paul when he was assigned to be the Newman Center chaplain in 1993.
Father Paul and I shared many memories over the years. The dedication of the Newman Center chapel and the well attended Masses that followed. Ash Wednesday services. Collections for charities. The many Queens College couples he married — and the children he baptized. The sadness of the 9/11 memorials.
The special Mass he conducted in the chapel in 2005 for my wife and me as we celebrated the 50th anniversary of my QC graduation. How delighted he was in 2008 when Bishop DiMarzio came to provide the commencement invocation. Father Paul proudly showed him the stained glass windows in the chapel in the Student Union building. He had saved them from a church in Brooklyn that was being razed.
Rest In Peace Father Paul after a job well done.