Aug. 8, 2017 - Loyola Jesuit Center in Morristown, N.J., hosted a special farewell Mass and reception on July 23, for Fr. Bill Rakowicz, SJ, who has faithfully served in his capacity as vice-superior for six years.
A New Jersey native, Fr. Bill Rakowicz, SJ, entered the Jesuits in 1966 after graduation from St. Peter’s Prep in Jersey City. He received his undergraduate degree from Fordham University in 1972 and did his graduate work in theology at Loyola University, Chicago. A year before his ordination in 1980, Fr. Bill worked at Loyola House of Retreats (now called Loyola Jesuit Center). Afterwards, he was assigned to work in the Caroline Marshall Islands in various positions from director of the local Jesuit high school to spiritual and retreat director. In 1987, he received a licentiate and masters in canon law from St. Paul’s and the University of Ottawa and afterwards served as the judicial vicar in the two dioceses of the region while continuing to assist in Jesuit, parish and school work. Fr. Bill returned to the United States and after a sabbatical was reassigned to Loyola in 2007.
“On behalf of Loyola Jesuit Center, we want to thank Fr. Bill for the extraordinary fine work that he has done in Morristown over the past ten years for the Jesuits and for the many lay men and women who have benefitted from his wisdom and guidance. We are profoundly grateful to him for the countless contributions he has made during his tenure as retreat director, spiritual director and spiritual supervisor. Most notable are his contributions toward the completion of four years of renovations to our one-hundred and ten-year-old main mansion, including a new Jesuit residence on the 3rd floor. Fr. Bill’s warmth, friendliness and presence will be sadly missed by the Jesuits, staff and retreatants at Loyola Jesuit Center and we wish him well with his new appointment,” said Renee Owens, director of the Jesuit Center.
Fr. Bill will return to Micronesia later this summer to assume the role of diocesan judicial vicar and live in the Jesuit community on the island of Pohnpei.