1920 - 100 Points of Light


After a great deal of preparation, along with the requisite setbacks and problems, in 1920 the first group of Columban Fathers left their familiar surroundings to fulfill the mission in China for which they were commissioned.

The Holy See assigned the Columbans to the city of Hanyang in the Chinese province of Hupeh in December 1919 (Far East, August 1920).

An “advance party” of Columbans, consisting of Fathers Edward J. Galvin, John Blowick, and Owen MacPolin, arrived in China in June 1920. When this group located a home for the Columbans in Hanyang, Fr. Blowick sent word to Omaha that other Columbans were clear to make the great journey to the East.

In August of 1920, the main group of the pioneering Columbans docked in Shanghai, China, after their long sea voyage across the Pacific. 

The group consisted of Columban Fathers Joseph Crossan, Matthew Dolan, Timothy Leonard, Arthur McGuinness, Michael McHugh, John O’Brien, Edward J. O’Doherty, Richard Ranaghan, Cornelius Tierney and Thomas Quinlan. Columban Fathers John Dawson and Michael Mee would join them in China later in 1920.

The Columban overseas mission was underway, with much trial, tribulation, and success to come.

The first group of Columban priests to China

About us

Columban logoThe Columbans are a society of missionaries, including priests and lay people, who minister to people of various cultures as a way of witnessing to the universal love of God.

We go in the name of the Church to announce, by deed and word, the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Quick Contact

Missionary Society of St. Columban
1902 N. Calhoun
St. Columbans, NE 68056
Phone: 877-299-1920
Fax: 402-291-4984
email: mission@columban.org