Fr. Bertram Mulligan was born in Dundalk, Co. Louth, Ireland on June 15, 1922, the son of Joseph Mulligan and Margaret Watters. His baptismal name was Kevin and his religious name was Bertram. He entered the Capuchin Franciscan Order on October 3, 1941 and made his Solemn Vows on October 4, 1945. He was ordained a priest on June 16, 1949. In September of 1949 he was sent from Ireland to serve at St. Joseph Church in Roseburg, OR as associate pastor. He then served as associate pastor at St. Mary’s in Ukiah, CA and Our Lady of Angels in Hermiston, OR. Afterward he served as Pastor at St. Aloysius in Point Arena, CA; Our Lady of Good Counsel in Fort Bragg, CA; St. Mary’s in Ukiah, CA; Our Lady of Angels in Burlingame, CA; and St. Joseph in Roseburg, OR. He then served as a hospital chaplain at the VA Hospital in Fresno, CA. He was the first Guardian of St. Francis of Assisi Friary in Burlingame, CA. In 1998 he was named Provincial Archivist for the Western America Province. In 2007 he retired at Mercy Care and Retirement Center in Oakland, CA where he died on October 29, 2016.
Fr. Bertram was a very tranquil man. His tranquility came from a deep inner peace and strength that came from his life of prayer. He was gentle, humble, unassuming, kind and patient. He embodied the definition of what is a gentleman. He was fraternal, hospitable and courteous. He was a caring person for all, but especially for the elderly friars and the sick. He had a special place in his heart for Mendocino County where he served for many years. He loved his family in Ireland and enjoyed his visits. Fr. Bertram wrote: “There’s something of God in everything and in everyone we see. I pray for the grace to see Him in others and hope they will see Him in me.”
Fr. Bertram is survived by his brother Aidan Mulligan and his sister Marie McDonnell. He is predeceased by his brothers Dermot, Patrick, Niall and his sister Sr. Alice.
Fr. Bertram's funeral arrangements are as follows: Rosary is Thursday November 3, 2016 at 7:30 pm at Our Lady of Angels Church, 1721 Hillside Dr., Burlingame CA 94010. Mass of Christian Burial is Friday November 4, 2016 at 9 am also at Our Lady of Angels Church. Burial is at 10:00 am on Saturday November 5, 2016 at San Lorenzo Friary. 1802 Sky Drive in Santa Ynez, CA 93460.
In lieu of flowers please consider making a donation in memory of Fr. Bertram Mulligan to the Capuchin Franciscan Foundation for Retired Friars, 1345 Cortez Avenue, Burlingame, CA 94010.