Rev. Thomas Coughlin, O.P. Miss., Doctorate in Ministry, honoris causa
Rev. Thomas Coughlin, O.P. Miss., is Director of the Deaf Apostolate of the San Antonio Archdiocese, an on-call RN at the Texas School for the Deaf in Austin, Texas, and founder and Prior General of the Dominican Missionaries for the Deaf Apostolate Congregation. Fr. Coughlin earned a B.A. in English from Gallaudet University and an M.A.in Religious Studies from The Catholic University of America. He returned to school and pursued an Associate of Science degree in nursing from Excelsior College.
When Thomas Coughlin was ordained to the priesthood in 1977, he would become among the first Deaf priests in North America. In 1978, with other members of the Deaf community, he founded Mark Seven Deaf Foundation, Inc. Among its many services is a camp in upstate New York that for 30 years has been a popular site fostering biblical study, evangelization, ministry empowerment, and pastoral care for deaf youth and adults.
Throughout his ministry, he has been committed to insuring access to theological education and spiritual formation for deaf men with priestly vocations. In 1991, he established Mark Seven-DePaul House of Studies for Deaf Seminarians, Inc., to support those vocations. Four of the world’s 13 Deaf priests are among those who were participants in this House of Studies. In 2004, he founded the Dominican Missionaries for the Deaf Apostolate Congregation where, since its inception, 22 deaf and hearing men have been received into the Congregation with locations in San Antonio, Texas, and St. Louis, Missouri.