Father Patrick Devine

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  • January 12, 2024
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As football became the dominant sport in this, the Anthracite coal fields of Pennsylvania, the running back position was always considered the glamor position. After all, Diehl, Eshmont, Filipowicz, Pezelski, Diminick, Darrup and others were the players that were looked up to by youngsters waiting in line to play. Pat Devine helped to change all of that by playing the quarterback position at Mount Carmel Catholic High like no one had done before. He not only handed off or threw once in a while, he ran the ball and made the Ram offense so difficult to defend. Thrust into the starting job by coach Frank Ulicny as a sophomore, Patrick would help the Catholic High team develop into one that had to be reckoned with. As a senior in 1960, Devine would throw for 10 touchdowns and add 8 more on the ground in leading that team to a fine 7-3 record and Catholic High’s first winning season since 1949. That Ram team would score 243 points, surpassed only by the 256 put up by Catholic’s 1940 team. They would finish as the runner-up in the Anthracite Catholic League to Shamokin Catholic, a team it lost to by a 6-0 score in a real slugfest. That 1960 team would mark a turn in the road for Catholic High fortunes, as they would lay the groundwork for the fine Ram teams of the future. Pat Devine would put himself in the middle of any quarterback discussion including Joe Buchinski and Greg Doviak as the greatest of all time.

For his efforts, Devine was named to the first team of the Anthracite Catholic League all star team for the second year running, and also placed second as the league’s MVP. On a larger scale, Devine was given honorable mention to the Associated Press All State team, as well as, the 1960 Big 33 team. By the way, the quarterback on those teams was Joe Willie Namath.

Father Pat also starred on the basketball court and the baseball diamond for the Rams for 4 years running. His efforts were responsible for his being named the Student Athlete of the Year at the annual banquet at the Elks lodge in 1961.

Following graduation in 1961, Pat would enter Resurrection College in Kitchner, Ontario, completing his Bachelor in Philosophy Degree in 1965. He would then enter Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland and graduated in 1959 with his M.A. in Theology. He was ordained into the priesthood on May 23, 1969 at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Harrisburg, Penna. His assignments as an Asst Pastor from 1969-1980 included St. Francis of Assisi, Harrisburg, St. Joseph’s in Mechanicsburg, St. Leo’s in Rohrerstown and St. Francis Xavier in Gettysburg. He became Pastor of St. John Neumann in Lancaster from 1980 to 1994 and moved on to St. Columba’s in Bloomsburg until 2009. He currently serves as the Chaplain at Maria Hill in Danville.

Categories: 2011 Hall of Fame