1911 – 1978 (June 8)
Albert A. Durant was born on October 23, 1911 in Lawrence, Massachusetts, to Albert Durant and Mary Kirby, and was baptized there in the Church of Saint Patrick on November 5, 1911. After graduation from Lawrence High School, he attended Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, New York as a post-graduate student. He was received into the novitiate in September, 1928, and professed simple vows in the Order on September 10, 1929. He earned his B.A. degree in Philosophy from Villanova College, and later an M.A. in English from the Catholic University of America. He was ordained to the priesthood on June 9, 1936. He subsequently did further graduate studies at the University of Chicago as well as DePaul Univeristy in Chicago.
Father Durant was first assigned to Saint Rita High School, Chicago, where he taught for six years. He also taught at Cascia Hall, Tulsa, Oklahoma, ministered at Our Mother of Good Counsel Church, Los Angeles, Califonria, and served for a short time as a member of the Mission Band of the Villanova Province. In 1957, Father Durant was assigned to Mendel Catholic High School, Chicago, where he served until the time of his death. During his career as a teacher, Father Durant enjoyed an extraordinary reputation for presenting Shakespeare and the art of public speaking. He was chaplain for several years of the Chicago Chapter of the Catholic Poetry Society of America. He was also a widely sought after retreat director and lecturer before university and literary groups on topics of religion, literature and drama.
In later years, Father Durant suffered from diminished eyesight and other health problems. He died on June 8, 1978 of a heart attack, and is buried in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Worth, Illinois.