Rev. Aloysius R. Thoman, 97, Jesuit pastor, chaplain

October 30, 2004

The Rev. Aloysius Robert Thoman, a retired Jesuit pastor of a historic Southern Maryland parish who was later chaplain of Mercy Medical Center in downtown Baltimore, died Sunday at a St. Joseph's University health care center in Philadelphia of complications from a stroke. He was 97.

Born in Baltimore, he attended the old St. Paul Parochial School and was a 1925 graduate of Loyola High School, then at Calvert and Madison streets, where he developed an affection for mathematics and a talent for practical mechanics and electricity.

Father Thoman, who was related through his mother's family to the composer Richard Wagner, studied the violin.

After a year at Loyola College, he entered the Society of Jesus and studied at Milford, Ohio, Wernersville, Pa., and at Woodstock College in western Baltimore County. He was ordained a priest in 1941 by Archbishop Michael J. Curley.

Assigned to Southern Maryland parishes in 1943, Father Thoman was pastor of St. Joseph in Morganza, St. Nicholas in Lexington Park and the historic St. Ignatius Church, established in 1641 at Port Tobacco's Chapel Point, where he served from 1953 to 1978. During this period, he also was a consultant on construction projects at Loyola College in Baltimore, Woodstock College and St. Joseph's University.

After several years working in a parish in West Palm Beach, Fla., he returned to Baltimore and became a chaplain at Mercy Medical Center from 1982 to 1994.

A Mass of Christian burial was offered yesterday at Chapel Point.

Survivors include a brother, John A. Thoman of Baltimore; and many nieces and nephews.

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