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By Fr. William Matthews, SDB


Melbourne, Australia, 8 October 2017 -- The second oldest Salesian Brother of the Australian-Pacific Province of Mary Help of Christians, Br Cahill Gleisner SDB, returned to the Lord after suffering a short but painful illness on Saturday 7th October. Br Cahill who had a great devotion praying the rosary all of his life, died on the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. Br Gleisner was 87 years of age, and had been a professed Salesian Brother for 66 years.


Known for always being a smartly dressed and a gentle man, Br Cahill spent most of his Salesian life at Rupertswood in Sunbury. He undertook his noviciate with Br Joe Ellul and Fr Frank Freeman at Rupertswood in 1950 under the direction of Fr Joseph Cianter. Br Cahill also spent a short time at Salesian College in Chadstone and Don Bosco Youth Centre & Hostel in Brunswick. His last appointment as an Assistant was at Rupertswood in Sunbury in 1974. He spent the last 43 years in the same community before moving into Goonawarra Aged Care Facility in Sunbury at the end of 2016.


He was known for his gentle manners and optimistic views on people in his life. Yet, behind his innocent face, Br Cahill was renowned for being a practical joker. He was always happy to share a joke, play a joke and take a joke with anyone.


During his service at Salesian College in Sunbury, he looked after the Vegies Patch at the back of the college, where a variety of vegetables flourished under his green hands. In those days, students who were feeling homesick or not travelling well in classes were sent down to Br Cahill’s Vegies Patch to rewind and to recover under the care of this simple and gentle Brother. Many past pupils still talk about wonderful experiences they had with Br Cahill down at the Patch.


It is a great and sad loss for the Salesian Province. Br Cahill will be fondly remembered for many gentle little ways he interacted with different people.


The requiem Mass for Br Cahill Gleisner is scheduled for Monday 16th October at St John Bosco chapel in Salesian College Sunbury beginning at 11:00 AM.


Eternal rest grant unto Br Cahill, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May he Rest In Peace. Amen.




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  • Jeff Bradley 2017.10.10 18:20
    A champion. Provided security at Chadstone when the College was being built. Displayed humility by cleaning the classrooms and toilets each day after school. Ran the dormitory for aspirants and always joined in our games after the evening meal.

    I have fond memories of a gentle and genuine follower of Don Bosco. RIP.

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