Beloved Jesuit and professor Fr. Charles Shelton leaves legacy of service and scholarship

Perhaps the greatest testament to the life and work of Father Charles Shelton is this – on Monday, Jan. 20, the night of his passing, 35 current and former students gathered at the hospital to send their beloved priest and professor home to God. It was a fitting goodbye for a man who affected so many lives during his too-brief 64 years. 

Fr. Shelton entered the Society of Jesus in 1972 and was ordained a priest in 1982. He joined Regis’ Department of Psychology in 1988 and from the outset dedicated himself to student growth and development. He became a trusted adviser and friend to countless Regis students.

“Fr. Shelton mentored and walked with our students and alumni for so many years, through their moments of joy and gratitude as well as in times of tragedy and loss. He is beloved by all and will be deeply missed,” said Father President John P. Fitzgibbons, S.J.

Student-athletes, in particular, revered Fr. Shelton. He served as the chaplain for the men’s soccer and baseball teams for more than two decades. He never missed a home game. 

“Students looked forward to Fr. Shelton’s blessings,” said Ann Martin, director of athletics. “He was part of their rallying cry, part of their success. We will always feel his presence on the sideline.”  

Despite his popularity with students and renown as a psychology scholar, Fr. Shelton never sought the spotlight. He was the award-winning author of five books, including a groundbreaking guide to grateful living. Yet he went about his life and work in a humble, quiet way – letting his actions do the talking.

Those who knew him will remember Fr. Shelton as an insightful scholar and diligent worker. He earned his doctorate from Loyola University Chicago and held degrees from St. Louis University and the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley. He also served as a licensed psychologist, operating a private practice for more than 15 years.

But more than anything else, Fr. Shelton was a person who lived what he believed. He was a deeply holy man who was always there for the people who needed him most. He lived with gratitude for his many blessings. And the Regis community was a far better place having known his gracious presence.

In lieu of flowers, Fr. Shelton’s family and the Regis Jesuit Community suggest a donation to help student-athletes. Please be sure to designate your gift “in memory of Fr. Shelton.”