A long-term member of the Canadian Catholic Historical Association, Father Carl Matthews was born at Kingston, Ontario in 1932 and attended Regiopolis College before entering the Jesuits in Guelph, Ontario in 1951. He taught at Regiopolis College for three years after which he undertook special studies in Education at the University of Toronto. In 1963, he studied theology at Regis College in Toronto where he was ordained a priest on 4 June 1966. When he had completed his final year of theology, he enrolled at the University of Toronto for further studies in Education.
Father Matthews spent most of his life working in two areas: Catholic Education and Pastoral Ministry. He was consultant to the Catholic Education Association and a Trustee of the Catholic School Board. He was Chairman of the Metropolitan Separate Catholic School Board and authored a number of books on Catholic Education in Ontario and Canada. He was also Editor of The Catholic Register and lectured on Catholic Education in Ontario at St Augustine Seminary. On the pastoral side, he ministered at the Martyrs’ Shrine in Midland, Ontario, Good Shepherd Parish in Thornhill, Ontario, and, at St Michael’s Cathedral in Toronto.
In 1994, Father Matthews became the Pastor of St John the Evangelist Church in Waubaushene, Ontario and St Francis Xavier Mission on Christian Island. In 2010, he moved to Toronto where he was Chaplain at the Sisters of St Joseph Motherhouse. Due to deteriorating health, he went to the Jesuit Infirmary at Pickering, Ontario. He died on the Feast of the Canadian Martyrs in the 81st year of his life and 62nd year in the Society of Jesus.
CCHA member, Michael Power, has written a full-length story of Father Matthews’ involvement about Ontario separate schools entitled Jesuit in the Legislative Gallery: A Life of Father Carl Matthew, S.J.