Father John J. Hynes


Father John J. Hynes, who was a pastor on Staten Island and served for many years as a hospital chaplain in the Bronx, died Jan. 22 at the home of his sister Genevieve Kelly in Rockaway, Queens. He was 78. Cardinal Egan celebrated the Funeral Mass Jan. 25 at St. John the Evangelist Church in Manhattan. Msgr. Joseph J. Zammit, chaplain of the New York City Police Department, was the homilist. Father Hynes grew up in St. John the Evangelist parish and celebrated his first Mass in its church. Most recently he served on Staten Island as administrator of Holy Family parish, 1998-2003; pastor of St. Adalbert's, 1992-1998; and parochial vicar at Sacred Heart, 1991-1992. Previously he was pastor of St. Francis of Assisi in Mount Vernon, 1985-1991; and parochial vicar at Immaculate Heart of Mary, Scarsdale, 1983-1985, and Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary, Manhattan, 1969-1971. He served for a total of 18 years as a chaplain at Bronx Municipal Hospital Center (now Jacobi Medical Center), 1961-1967 and 1971-1983. "He was a very good and holy priest who thought of everyone else but himself," Msgr. Zammit said in an interview. "He saw priesthood pretty much as Christ's admonition not to be served but to serve, and that was what he did." He came to know Father Hynes when both were chaplains at Jacobi. Father Hynes "had a special feeling" for hospital work, he added, in part because Jacobi was a city hospital and many of its patients were poor. "Wherever he worked, the people came to love him very much because he was always there for them," he said. "That was true in the hospital and in any parish where he ever served." Father Hynes took on challenging assignments and "did a great job," but was "a very private person" who never sought attention or recognition, Msgr. Zammit said. "He would not want people to be talking about him," he remarked. "He was a very quiet, humble man who did his job and did it well." That applied equally to the responsibilities of his own spiritual life. "We were told we should be men of prayer, and he was," Msgr. Zammit said. "He was faithful to saying the breviary and celebrating daily Mass. Both things were very important to him." Born in Manhattan, Father Hynes studied at Cathedral College and St. Joseph's Seminary, Dunwoodie, and was ordained May 14, 1954. He served as a parochial vicar at St. Joseph's in Millbrook, 1954-1955, and St. Ann's in Nyack, 1955-1961, before his assignment as a chaplain. He retired in 2003. He received the first Terence Cardinal Cooke Chaplain of the Year Award in 1969. In addition to Mrs. Kelly, he is survived by his sisters Annabel Brennan and Madeleine Gautreaux. Burial was at Calvary Cemetery in Long Island City. Father John J. Hynes


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