Staff Obituaries
We celebrate the lives of these staff members

Rev. James McFarland A beloved former SJV chaplan, Rev. James McFarland passed away on 9-16-2010. The wake was held at McLaughlin Funeral Home on Tuesday, Sept. 21 with a Mass the following day at Saint John the Baptist, the church where he said his first Mass, in Jersey City. Interment was at Holy Cross Cemetery, North Arlington.

To all of us with roots in Saint Joseph's Village this is a tremendous loss. Father McFarland has been a good friend to those who had the chance to know him, a great priest, and to many like a father.

The following is a message from a former child of SJV: He has touched many souls in this way. "THANK YOU now as an adult. THANK YOU for keeping hope alive in me as a child. THANK YOU for saying we kids had Angel wings under our bed. THANK YOU for answering my questions and not dismissing me cause I was a kid. THANK YOU for your compassion, understanding, patience, love & care to ALL us! THANK YOU for not judging. THANK YOU for encouragement, your guidence, and your time. To this day you continue to bless my heart! Through these years without you knowing your words have helped me to be the person I've become. THANK YOU! and THANK YOU to JESUS for without Him, I would not be alive today! THANK YOU!!! Much blessings and prayers." (A former child in St.Josephs Village, Rockleigh, NJ 1966-71)

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The following obituary apeared in the Jersey Journal: FATHER JAMES W. McFARLAND RUTHERFORD Father James W. McFarland, a retired priest of the Archdiocese of Newark, died at his home at the John Vianney Residence in Rutherford on Thursday, September 16, 2010. He was 89 years old. Father McFarland was born in Jersey City. He graduated from Dickinson High School and Seton Hall University and was ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood on May 31, 1947. He served in parishes in all four counties of the Archdiocese of Newark and served as chaplain at both the former St Joseph's Home for Dependent Children in Rockleigh and Bayonne Hospital. Father McFarland served as pastor of St Margaret's in Little Ferry, New Jersey for five years. In the early years of his priesthood, Father McFarland also served as assistant director of the Mount Carmel Guild Apostolate for the Blind. He designed a machine that made it possible to reproduce a 100-page Braille volume in less than two hours, quite the technological achievement for the times. "When he celebrated his 80th birthday, he said that if there was one request, one instruction, he could give to all those people who had touched his life it would be 'Love One Another.' "said his niece Margaretta McFarland Rothenberg. "My uncle recognized and embraced God's love and he made it his life's work to share that love. In recent years, he often spoke, both optimistically and wistfully, of what the world would be like if everyone understood how complete and perfect God's love for each of us is and lived in a manner that acknowledged that we all share in that love." The focus of Father McFarland's ministry, and, according to his family, his greatest joy, was his work with children and adolescents from the various parishes. Father "adopted" one child for every year he was a priest. He called them his adopted daughters, and strove to act as a loving parent to each of them. These daughters, now a total of 50 adults and their families became his extended family. Through the years Father provided for his daughters in various ways including spiritually and emotionally. When asked what Father meant to his daughters, Lourdes Zaragoza Mitchel, now a professor at Seton Hall University, answered, "He meant the world to us. Through his caring, kindness, thoughtfulness, and unselfish ways Father taught us the meaning of love. He taught us how to love and serve others." Father McFarland was predeceased by his parents, Henry and Florence (MacMurran); his brothers, Henry and the Reverend Francis S.J.; and his sister Mildred. In addition to his 50 daughters, he is survived by his sister-in-law Margaret Etta Flaherty McFarland; his nephew Henry McFarland and his wife Mary Ann; his niece Margaretta and her husband Steven Rothenberg; and his grandnieces and nephews Bridget, Matthew, Brendan, and Eileen McFarland and Benjamin and Maria Rothenberg.
Published in The Jersey Journal on September 20, 2010

Thomas J. Rooney
A former SJV maintenance man from about 1965 through the Village's closing, Thomas J. Rooney, passed away around October of 2008. After the Village's closing, he stayed on as a Bergen County employee to maintain the facility under the county's usage for various social service programs. One former Village resident and many nuns came back for his retirement party in 2000 after he had worked there for most of his working years in N.J. His daughter, Theresa, who was not a resident of the Village, often went with her father to work with him during school vacations and thus knew the facility quite well. The buildings were county owned at the time. He called it the Village long after the orphanage closed and continued to keep in touch with many of the nuns who ran it. Some may remember Thomas' other children, John and Bridget who visited the Village ocassionally to use the swimming pool. Later, John worked at the Village when he was a teenager in the 70s. Thomas' other daughter, Sarah, worked at the Village in the late 80s as a nursing student in the Bergen County Health Care Center that now occupies the infermary and girl's cottaages. Bridget died in 1970 of leukemia. Theresa wants to know if others remember her father. Please post your comments on Village Memories.