Fr. Donald Fitzsimmons, CSV, has long been acknowledged as a horticulture expert among his confreres living in the retirement wing of the Viatorian Province Center. He is a veritable expert on the many varieties of trees, plants and flowers growing on the lush acres of the grounds.

Fr. Don Fitzsimmons outside at the Province Center

But recently, he revealed another hidden talent: photography. Earlier this year, Fr. Fitzsimmons donated hundreds of color slides he took to the Viatorian Archives.

“The slides were taken mostly in the late 1970s and early 1980s,” says Viatorian Archivist Rebecca Skirvin, “and show an array of subjects, including still life prints, cityscapes and nature scenes, as well as closeups of plants and flowers in the Chicago area.”

Fr. Fitzsimmons has been a member of the Viatorian Community for more than 70 years and a priest for 63 years. Over his many decades in ministry, he coordinated the religion program at the former Spalding Institute before serving as a counselor.

He later worked for 18 years at Saint Viator High School, as a teacher and guidance counselor, before spending more than one dozen years as a substance abuse counselor at a pair of local hospitals.

Here is a sampling of his work: