James F Hynes, OFM
1951 – 2008
Fr. James F. Hynes, OFM, was born on July 31, 1951, in Buffalo, N.Y. He attended college in Snyder, N.Y., while working as a clothing salesman for Sears and Roebuck Department Store. Perhaps influenced by the example of his cousin, who had joined the Order in the late 1960s, Fr. Jim entered the Province’s pre-novitiate program in 1974 at Holy Cross Friary in the Bronx, continuing his undergraduate education at St. John’s University in New York.
In 1975, He was received into the Province’s novitiate at St. Bonaventure University, Allegany, N.Y., and professed first vows the following year at St. Francis Friary, Brookline, Mass. Fr. Jim professed solemn vows in 1979 at St. Francis of Assisi Church in New York City and was ordained a priest in 1980 at St. Camillus Church, Silver Spring, Md.
Fr. Jim had spent his deacon year as a member of the retreat team at St. Francis Retreat Center in Rye Beach, N.H., and he continued to serve there following his ordination; in 1982, he was named coordinator of retreats and vicar of the friar community there.
In 1984, he was assigned to Brookline, Mass., as associate novice master and vicar of the community, and he served four years as guardian of Holy Cross Friary in the Bronx, N.Y., and director of the pre-novitiate program. In 1990, when the Province assumed the care of Holy Name of Jesus Parish on West 96th Street in New York, Fr. Jim was named pastor and guardian, serving in that capacity for nine years.
He was guardian and pastor of St. Patrick-St. Anthony Parish in Hartford, Conn., from 1999 to 2008. Fr. Jim then requested a sabbatical for the fall semester, although typical of his strong work ethic, he chose to spend it beginning a new Master’s degree program in Church Administration at Villanova University.
Fr. Jim’s many talents and boundless energy marked him out for leadership positions early on in his friar life. With a profound Gospel vision of God’s acceptance of all people, he was always welcoming and inviting back to the Church, or challenging parishioners to become more deeply involved through volunteering their time and energies in various ministries and outreach programs.
He died Nov. 1, 2008, in Bryn Mawr, Pa., where he was living for the semester. Fr. Jim was 57 years old, a professed friar for 32 years and a priest for 28 years.