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Rev. John L. Sullivan

June 24, 1938 ~ September 26, 2018 (age 80)
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HOLYOKE

Reverend John L. Sullivan, 80, died on September 26, 2018, at the Mount St. Vincent Nursing Home in Holyoke.   Father Sullivan was born in Holyoke on June 24, 1938, the eldest child of the late John P. Sullivan and Leonie Montcalm Sullivan.  He attended Our Lady of Perpetual Help Grammar School in Holyoke, graduated from Assumption Preparatory School in Worcester in 1955, and from Assumption College, also in Worcester, in 1959, including a Junior Year Abroad at the Institute Catholique de Paris in 1957-58.   Following his graduation, he taught French at Dracut High School in Dracut, Mass., for the academic year 1959-1960 and at Holyoke High School from 1960 to 1967, including a sabbatical year 1962-1963 as a Lay Volunteer with the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity in Santa Fe, New Mexico, founded by Father James Flanagan.   Having made the decision to join the priesthood, he entered the seminary at the American College in Louvain, Belgium, in 1967 and was ordained into the priesthood by the Bishop of Springfield, Christopher J. Weldon, on July 3, 1971.  Father Sullivan’s first assignment was at Notre Dame Parish in Adams, MA (1971-1975), followed by assignments at St. Rose de Lima in Chicopee, MA (1976-77), St. Theresa’s Parish in South Hadley, MA (1978-1980) and Nativity Parish in Chicopee, MA (1980-1983).   In 1983, Father Sullivan was authorized by Bishop Weldon to attend the Catholic University of America from which he attained a degree in Canon Law in 1985.   He returned to the Diocese of Springfield in 1985, initially at St. Jerome’s Parish in Holyoke from 1985-1987, with additional duties at the Diocesan Marriage Tribunal including as a Judge at Tribunal, then as a Judge in Second Instance (1985), Adjutant Judicial Vicar (1987-1992), Judge and Defender of the Bond, to the Provincial Court, Springfield Division (1989-1992).  In addition to those duties, Father Sullivan was also pastor of St. Casimir’s Parish (1987-1990) and Chaplain at Mont Marie Motherhouse (1990-1992), then at the Providence Motherhouse (1992-1996).   He also served as the Administrator of the Mission of St. Anthony in Agawam, MA (1996-1998), as the Administrator of Saint Joseph Parish in Springfield, MA (1998-2000), and as pastor of Saint Joseph Parish (2000-2005).   Father Sullivan was predeceased by his brother Ulric R. Sullivan, of Greenwich, Connecticut, and is survived by his sisters, Leonie S. Watson, of Mountainview, New Jersey, Anne S. Burke and Mary Pat S. Donah, both of Holyoke, Massachusetts, and his brother, Thomas C. Sullivan, of Longmeadow, Massachusetts. He also leaves numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. A Con-Celebrated Mass of Christian Burial will be held Wednesday, October 10, 2018 at 10:30 a.m. at Saint Jerome Church, 169 Hampden Street, Holyoke. Burial will follow in Notre Dame Cemetery, South Hadley. Calling hours will be held at the church on Wednesday morning from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. prior to the Mass. The Sullivan family would like to thank the staff at Mount Saint Vincent Nursing Home for the compassionate care they provided to Father during his time with them. In lieu of flowers you are welcome to make donations to a charity of your choice.

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