Father Aloysius Carruth

born 2 July 1911 in Paisley
clothed 29 September 1929
professed 29 September 1930
solemn profession 10 August 1936
ordained 30 July 1939
died 17 November 2004 in London

Fr James Aloysius Carruth – a historical author

Born James Carruth on 2 July 1911 in Paisley to George Ignatius and Maria (née Corti), younger brother of Fr Edmund Carruth and second son of George and maria.  Fr Aloysius was one of eight children (George (Fr Edmund) (1910), James (Fr Aloysius) (1911), Francis Donald (1912), Marie (1914), Joe (1916), Winnie (1918 died 1919), Rhoda (1920) and Anna (1922)). Joe Carruth, a younger brother also came to study at Fort Augustus and joined, for a short period, the Abbey and later went on to play for Celtic.  Fr Aloysius was educated at Fort Augustus and entered the monastery directly from the school. He gained his rugby colours in 1927 (with H Boultwood – later Abbot Boultwood) and 1928 and cricket colours in 1928 and 1929. Between 1926 and 1929, there was always a Carruth on the rugby colours board (1926 G Carruth (Fr Edmund), 1927 J Carruth (Fr Aloysius), 1928 J Carruth, D Carruth, 1929 D Carruth) and likewise of the cricket colours board 1926 G Carruth, 1927 G Carruth, 1928 J Carruth, 1929 J Carruth, 1930 D Carruth).

1927 was also remarkable in that the Scoutmasters’ Training Corps, at the end of the first year of its existence, produced no less than seven ‘King’s Scouts’ – J. Richardson (later Fr Anselm), D. Carruth, J. Brown, H. Boultwood (later Fr Alban), W.D. Young, J. Carruth (later Fr Aloysius) and F. Froes.

(from Abbey Boys by Mike Turnbull)

Fr Aloysius entered the Abbey in 1929 and was professed the following year before being sent to Germany to study. On 1 August 1937, Brs Alban Boultwood (later Abbot Alban Boutlwood – the H Boultwood mentioned above) and Aloysius Carruth received the sub-diaconate.

On Sunday 30 July 1939, Bishop Bennett of Aberdeen (himself an Old Boy) ordained Fr Aloysius Carruth, Fr Alban Boultwood, Fr Cyprian Gibson and Fr Thomas McLaughlin.

He was sent to St Andrews Priory, the prep school in Edinburgh with Frs Gregory, Alban, and Joseph.  When he returned to the Abbey, he taught Latin in school and even appeared in small orchestras playing the double bass.  With Frs Gregory and his brother Edmund, he coached the boys’ cricket teams (all monks being excellent cricket players themselves whilst at school)

Fr Aloysius was a history  writer and a few of his books are still available today (short brief histories all published by Jarrold Publishing)

  • The Bonnie Prince Charlie Country and the 1745 Jacobite Rising (ISBN 978-0711701465)
  • Scotland the Brave (ISBN 978-0853068853)
  • Robert Burns’ Scotland (ISBN 978-0711702196)
  • Sir Walter Scott (ISBN 978-0711701861)
  • Mary, Queen of Scots (ISBN 978-0711701472)
  • Flora Macdonald: The Highland Heroine (ISBN 978-0711701380)
  • Heroic Wallace and Bruce (ISBN 978-0711702202)

He also wrote a pamphlet on the Loch Ness Monster, published and printed by the Abbey Press which had several editions.

Fr Aloysius’ sister owned Carruths Grotto in Glasgow and Fr Aloysius ran the Abbey Shop with many items sourced from the Grotto.

In 1974, Fr Aloysius left the Abbey and travelled to Zimbabwe to join the Regina Coeli mission in the Diocese of Umtali which had been set up in 1955. He taught for a few years in the secondary school.  But in 1977, the freedom fighters who were involved in the Rhodesian civil war arrived at the mission. Fr Aloysius left to seek refuge in Umtali (see https://www.yumpu.com/en/document/read/8295469/the-diocese-of-mutare-the-carmelites-in-zimbabwe-the-irish-)

There is reference to Fr Aloysius being in Australia in 1980

Dom J.A.Carruth OSB had given me a hard copy of this “Report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Condition of Crofters in the Highlands and Islands” when he was in Australia about 1980, ….

(see https://www.bluevapours.com/motel/johnmcpheefamily/images/Killiechonate-to-Geelong2013.pdf)

On returning to the UK, Fr Aloysius went to Barra as a parish priest and then at some point went to London to the Sisters of the poor.

Fr Aloysius died at Nazareth House on 17 November 2004 and he left his body to science – hence he has no grave.

Father Aloysius is not buried in the monk’s cemetery

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