Edward Shellito

Edward David Shellito was born in Erie, Pennsylvania on January 25, 1952, son of Edward L. Shellito and Virginia Ann Campbell. He is the oldest of five children, having two brothers and two sisters. He graduated from Cathedral Preparatory High School, Erie, Pennsylvania in 1970 and went on to Maryknoll College, Glen Ellyn, Illinois. When Glen Ellyn closed in 1971, he continued his studies at the University of Cincinnati (Ohio) where he earned a B.A. in Psychology in 1974.

He entered Maryknoll at Hingham, Massachusetts in September 1974. As a Seminarian, he completed his two years of Overseas Training Program in the Philippines, from 1977 through 1979. During language study he was actively involved in the local neighborhood around the language school, and after four months moved in with a local family. Upon completion of language study, he worked for a year in the Filipino parish in Monkayo, which Maryknoll had turned over to the local Church four years before. Here he visited the many outstations of the parish, giving seminars and attending meetings of the local Christian communities. During the last few months of his time in the Philippines he helped another Maryknoller, Father Walter Maxcy, to develop basic Christian communities in a new parish in La-ac.

After completing his training back in the United States, and receiving a M.Div. degree in Theology from Maryknoll School of Theology, Father Shellito was ordained at Maryknoll, New York on May 17, 1980. He was then assigned to the Philippines where, after a refresher course in language studies, he arrived in the parish of Asuncion, the Prelature of Tagum, in Davao del Norte. One year later, in June 1981, Father Shellito was forced to leave the country when the Philippine Government refused to renew his visa. Imelda Marcos, the wife of Filipino President Ferdinand Marcos, intervened, and in November 1981 Father Shellito was able to return to the Philippines, which he did the following month. He was assigned as administrator of the Parish of Cateel, Prelature of Tagum to assist the Filipino clergy. He remained there for three years developing the Mandaya and Manobo communities until the Parish was divided and two Filipino Pastors were able to replace him.

In July 1983, Father Shellito was assigned to the U.S. Region and to Development. He did development work for three years. In March 1987 after participating in the Spiritual Renewal Program in Israel, he returned to the Philippines to once again take up his missionary work serving the people of Aras-Asan and Bayabas in the Diooces of Surigao del Sur.

In 1991, Father Shellito was assigned to develop new ministries in Manila. He was chaplain at Makati Medical center and at the University of De LaSalle and was a guest lecturer at the East Asian Pastoral Institute at Ateneo University. Fr. Ed became known as a “Healing Priest” and spent many years working with the Catholic Charismatic Communities in the Philippines and Marriage Encounter. He was instrumental in the development of several projects to assist Alcoholics and Drug dependents in their recovery and was on the staff of the ASSIST program for clergy of the National Catholic Bishops Council. He later was the founder and director of the first residencial therapy center for Asian clergy. Subsequently Father completed an MS degree in Pastoral Counseling at Loyola College of Baltimore in 2007 before being assigned to Maryknoll’s African region with mission to the Church in Namibia.

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