FATHER JAMES F. JOYCE, SJ, was born in Brooklyn on Aug. 22, 1945, entered the Society of Jesus in 1963, and died July 21, 2023, at age 78.
He graduated from St. Saviour Elementary School and then Regis High School. Right after high school, Jim entered the Society of Jesus at St. Andrew-on-Hudson, where he completed his novitiate and juniorate, followed by philosophy studies for one year at Loyola Seminary.
He did his regency at St. Peter’s Prep in Jersey City, teaching history and coaching sports (1969-72). During this time, he also earned a master’s degree in American studies at Seton Hall University.
After ordination to the priesthood in 1975, Father Joyce’s first assignment was to direct retreats at Mount Manresa on Staten Island (1975-77). Next came tertianship in Ireland (1977-78).
After tertianship, Father Joyce returned to New York where he worked at Covenant House in Manhattan (1978-81). He took his final vows in 1979 in the Covenant House Chapel.
Following his stay at Covenant House, Father Joyce spent a year as an associate at St. Ignatius Parish in Brooklyn while working as a part-time chaplain at Kings County Hospital (1981-82).
For two years he was the province director of social ministries, representing the province on social justice issues and serving as prison chaplain, first at Rikers Island and then “The Tombs” (1982-84).
Father Joyce spent the next six years (1984-90) in the Bronx as the local superior at the Manida St. Jesuit Community in Hunts Point, where he continued as province director of social ministries.
In 1990 he was named president of St. Peter’s Prep in Jersey City, after which, in 1994, he had a working sabbatical with the Jesuit Refugee Service in West Africa. In 1995 Father Joyce moved back to the Nativity Mission Center while he served as provincial assistant for social and pastoral ministry (1995- 99). In 1999 he headed to Western New York for a stint at St. Ann’s Parish in Buffalo, including being the founding president of the Nativity/ San Miguel School there (1999-2008). Father Joyce became the superior at Murray-Weigel Hall, the Jesuit Health Care Residence in the Bronx (2009-2012). From the Bronx, he headed to Baltimore where for four years he was chaplain at Mercy Medical Center (2012-16).
Health concerns brought Father Joyce back to the province in 2017, then to the Murray-Weigel-Kohlmann Jesuit Community in the Bronx. Declining health forced him to move to Murray-Weigel Hall in 2021 where he battled pancreatic cancer until his death.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated July 27 at the Fordham University Church in the Bronx.
SISTER MARY ELIZABETH GAVAN died on July 24, at age 85, having served 63 years of her life as a Sister of St. Dominic of Amityville.
Mary grew up in Astoria, where she and her family were members of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church. Mary attended the parish school and then went to St. Agnes Academic High School in College Point. She was a member of the Legion of Mary as well as the Rosary Society.
She applied to the Congregation of the Holy Cross to become a Dominican Sister.
On Sept. 6, 1959, Sister Mary began her journey in Amityville. A year later, she was invested on Aug. 5 and received her religious name, Sister Lourdette.
After professing her first vows on Aug. 6, 1961, Sister Mary was assigned to teach in St. Catherine of Siena School in St. Albans. Sister Mary shared her gifts in many different schools in Brooklyn, Queens, and Nassau. She attended Queens College and received her degree in elementary education.
Sister Mary’s love for the Eucharist and her devotion to the rosary were evident to all who knew her. In 2007, Sister Mary began a