My Dear Parishioners,
I am very sorry to inform you that our Pastor Emeritus, Rev. James A. Grant passed away on August 22, 2023. He loved the people of this parish and you loved him as well. He was very kind and helpful to me. I will always appreciate his consistent support and friendship. He had a very funny and dry sense of humor and a very keen wit, and will be greatly missed. I think it is interesting that he passed on the feast of the Queenship of Mary, who is the mother of all priests. Please pray for his soul and the comfort of his family. Eternal rest grant unto him O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May his soul, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.
Here is an excerpt from Fr. Grant’s obituary. The full text can be found at https://plunkettfuneralhome.com/tribute/details/521/Rever end-James-Grant/obituary.html#tribute-start.
At the time of his passing, Fr. Grant served as Senior Priest at St. Francis of Assisi, Springfield, PA for over 10 years, continuing to say Mass on weekends, and as Pastor Emeritus at St. Joseph’s, Warrington, PA. He also served as Pastor or Assistant Pastor at many other parishes in the Philadelphia area, as his former parishioners fondly recall.
Fr. Grant attended St. Joseph’s Prep and earned a B.A. in 1962 from St. Charles Borromeo Seminary. He was ordained in 1966 by John Joseph Krol, Archbishop of Philadelphia. He later obtained a Baccalaureate in Canon Law (1974) as well as Licentiate in Canon Law (J.C.L.) from the Catholic University of America (1975).
Fr. Grant returned to St. Charles Borromeo Seminary as a faculty member and the Dean and was later appointed Assistant Judicial Vicar in the office of the Metropolitan Tribunal. He served as Chaplain at Philadelphia State Hospital, Chaplain for Bishop Conwell High School and as Regional Director of the Cardinal’s Commission on Human Relations.
Fr. Grant made many lifetime friends in the priesthood, travelled throughout the US and abroad, collected art from his many sojourns to Rome, Italy and sailing trips along his favorite east coast beaches (especially Sea Isle City, Avalon, and Stone Harbor, NJ). How he loved to sail! He named his boat “Diesnon,” Latin for a day when there is no business transacted.
He was very close to many of his nieces and nephews, regaling them with tales of his hijinks at high school, college and especially at Camp Brebeuf, VT where he was a camper, counsellor, and eventually Director, with the mischief continuing. He was a fixture at the Malone and Grant families’ celebrations over the years, most recently in May 2023 with the Grants in Pine Bush, NY where he entertained everyone with his sharp wit, jokes, and stories.
Happy Labor Day! It is hard to believe that this day is here already. It is good to rest from our Labors and to recognize what a blessing it is to be able to work. This is part of God’s plan for us and it helps us to realize who we are called to be. This weekend it is important to thank God for the grace to work as part of our human condition and to improve it. We also remember that the blessing of work is not an easy one. While we are grateful for the opportunity to work, we also recognize in these difficult times that many people are unemployed or underemployed and we include them in our prayers too.
Labor Day also means an end to our summer vacation. Our SJR students already started back this week and our CCD will soon be in operation. I hope that you had an enjoyable summer vacation with family and loved ones. We pray for all students returning to class at this time, whether at our school or elsewhere. Thank you to the parents and to all our teachers, staff and volunteers for providing a great education and formation for our young people. I especially want to thank you, the parishioners of St. Joseph. It is through your generosity, along with the parents who sacrifice, that we are able to provide these young people with a quality instruction in the faith. Every child that goes to our school or CCD program does so with your financial assistance. Thank you for supporting our regular collection, which helps to provide our youth with an excellent formation in the faith.
We are preparing to offer the RCIA or Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults this year. This is the special program where those who are interested in becoming Catholic, whether they have never been baptized or were raised in another faith, can learn more about our faith and receive the sacraments to become a Catholic. There will be more information coming, but if you know someone interested, please have them contact the rectory about attending our Night of Inquiry on Wednesday, September 20th at 7:00 p.m. in classroom 18. No commitment is necessary, it is just to find out what is involved.
God Bless You!