uggs uk Father Jack Named Monsignor
A wee bit of the Emerald Isle came alive in Healy Hall at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church last Sunday in celebration of Father Jack becoming Reverend Monsignor John K. Foley.
From Long Beach to Monrovia people came to show their respect and admiration of the priest at the reception to celebrate his ordination. Cardinal Roger Mahony officially ordained Monsignor Foley on March 19.
Father Jack, as everyone in the community calls him, was ordained for the priesthood in 1959 in his native Ireland. He was one of six children born in the farming community of Tipperary, where he developed his love of race horses. His mother was proud of her son’s commitment but was not sure this was the path he would chose.
“She was surprised when I was the one that chose, my brother was on the road [to priesthood],” Father Jack said. His brother, Dennis, is also a priest who is still in Ireland. His mother, Nona, passed away in the early 90s but came to America a few times to see her son. He has many nieces and nephews that have visited from Ireland as well.
After he was ordained, he left for America. His first assignment was as teacher at St. James the Less in La Crescenta, he then moved to St. Genevieve in Panorama City, St. Lawrence in Redondo Beach, St. Cyprian in Lakewood and Immaculate Conception in Monrovia, where he served from 1975 to 1992.
Many of his old friends and congregation from Monrovia came to the reception.
Kay Day met Father Jack when he came to Immaculate Conception. She said everyone hated to see him leave but was happy at what he had done at Holy Redeemer.
She added that even though he had left the church in Monrovia he never left the people there. It was in Monrovia, near Santa Anita Race track, where Father Jack revisited his love of racing. He counseled and married many jockeys and their families. He performed the marriage ceremony for jockey Chris McCarron more than 20 years ago and still stays in touch.
In fact Father Jack seemed to stay in touch with everyone he has met over the years.
“He is a warm, caring person that everyone loves,” Susan Fite, principal of Holy Redeemer Catholic School, said. She added that it means a lot to them when he shows up at their science fairs or other events. “The kids are just thrilled when he comes by.”
Father Jack thought back to his arrival at Holy Redeemer in 1992, saying he is pleased with how strong and supportive the congregation is.
“It really is about community,” he said.
The Sardos are one of the families that support the church.
“[Father Jack] brings personality, character and warmth [to the church],” Sonny Sardo said.
It is that personality and character that came through not only with the Irish celebration but with the laughter and joking that filled Healy Hall Sunday.
Father Jack was a little surprised when he got the word of his new title last January. He thought the notice was going to be one of his retirement but was happy to find that was not the case.
All at the reception were happy of his ordination to Monsignor ? not only is it an honor and recognition but it also means that Father Jack will be at Holy Redeemer as long as he wants. Monsignors do not have to retire.