Augustinians of the Assumption

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Home WHO WE ARE Assumptionists Profiles Fr. NORMAN MEIKLEJOHN, A.A.



Interviewer - Would you share with us your family background, early education and how you came to know the Assumptionists?

Fr. Norman - I am from Somerset, NH and was one of thirteen children, three of whom died very young. My sister who is an Ursuline religious stationed in New Rochelle, NY and I are the only ones left. I had the Sisters of the Holy Cross in elementary school in St. Martin's parish.  When the time came for high school, the assistant pastor urged me to take the scholarship exam for Assumption Prep which I was eventually granted.

- Where did your formation, studies and life in the congregation take you from there?

- I went to Assumption College where I was very much interested in law and journalism but by my sophomore year I decided to enter the Augustinians of the Assumption and was sent to Quebec for my novitiate. Later after graduating from the college, I was sent to Rome to study at the Angelicum and was ordained in 1954. I enjoyed Rome very much and in addition to my studies, I guided pilgrims around the city on foot. Needless to say, I grew to love and appreciate Rome's rich history and her people.

- Where did other assignments and ministries take you?

- Upon returning to Assumption College, I was assigned to be dean of men and teach theology and French. As I was most interested in history, I eventually went to Georgetown University in 1960 to study European and Latin American history. That experience was followed by a stint at Columbia University where I studied Institutional history which was interrupted for a year of residence in Colombia, S.A. I then came back to Assumption College as dean of students, while finishing my PhD in 1968 from Columbia. I  was most fortunate during those years to visit Chile, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru and Brazil. From 1966 -1975 I was assigned to various administrative posts at the college and superior of Old English Road from 19970 -1975. It was then that I was asked to go to Mexico. Eventually I became a Maryknoll associate and traveled to Peru to study Spanish for six months, before spending the next seven years in Lima. In 1986 I was sent to Moscow for thirteen very happy years ministering to several English and French speaking communities, the largest of which were the Africans. Back in the U.S., after a short time in Orange Co., CA with the Maryknoll associates, I moved on to Nashua, NH as assistant pastor for a brief time, before going to St. Anne's in Sturbridge from 2001 - 2007, where I worked in both the parish and the shrine.

- In what other ways do you continue to share your many gifts and talents?

- I am now living at Old English Road and help out at St. Francis Home. I am also involved at the college teaching Latin American history and will co-teach a course on North American Natives next semester. In my free time I enjoy reading, swimming and last spring I took a course in dramatic arts and was in a recent production of "Oliver." I also facilitate a book club which meets monthly, made up of members of the Sunday morning worship community here at the college.

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