Holy Cross Brother Frederick Williams, who served in the Archdiocese of Portland and at the University of Portland, died Aug. 4. He was 74.
Brother Williams was born in Charleston, S.C. on Nov. 15, 1937. He converted to the Catholic Church and was baptized in 1951. Two years later he was confirmed at the same church.
He attended Immaculate Conception elementary school and Immaculate Conception High School in Charleston where he graduated in 1956. In June 1956 he ventured to Sacred Heart Juniorate in Watertown, Wisc. He entered the novitiate in Rolling Prairie, Indiana in 1956 and made his first profession of vows in Rolling Prairie in 1957. In 1960, he made his perpetual profession of vows at Sacred Heart Church on the Notre Dame University campus.
He earned his bachelor's degree in 1963 from St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas. He took post-graduate courses at Immaculate Heart College in Los Angeles, at Pepperdine University in Los Angeles, at the University of San Francisco and the University of Portland. Along the way he earned a master's degree from St. Mary's University in San Antonio, Texas, and a master's degree from Portland State University in Portland.
Brother Frederick's ministerial responsibilities took him up and down the west coast.
He began his teaching career at Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks where he also served as the attendance officer. After a short stay at St. Francis High School in Mountain View, Calif., he moved to Long Beach, where he served 12 years as a teacher, a department chair, a director of student activities and eventually as principal for five years. After that he taught and served as chair of the Religious Studies Department at Moreau Catholic High School in Hayward for two years.
He then made a major change moving to the University of Portland where he served several major roles in student life. He became active in minority student affairs and in the Willamette Valley Racial Minorities Consortium, the Black Catholic Lay Caucus and other programs of the Archdiocese of Portland. He was sought out by many groups as one of a very few African American religious or clergy in the Archdiocese of Portland.
He eventually moved from the University of Portland to the DePaul Center and to Providence Hospital where he worked in helping those with chemical dependencies and addictions.
With the experience of physical and muscle weakness which began developing in the late 1990's, Brother Frederick moved to Austin and the Brother Vincent Pieau Residence in 2002. He spent the last several years at Dujarie House at Holy Cross Village in South Bend, Ind.
There will be a funeral mass at Holy Cross Village at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 8.