RIP Father Jim Mifsud….

UPDATE: The memorial service this evening was amazing. The largest turnout I have ever seen for a man who was well deserving. Chants of “Never Give Up” were cheered by attendees and Father Jim received a standing ovation as the casket made its way out of the Archbishop Mitty High School gym.

The eulogies by family members told stories of a man who was loving, caring and would bend over backwards to help anyone he came in touch with. He was truly loved and this was evident by the thousands who showed up this evening to pay their respects.

If you went to the service, please feel free to share your thoughts on this great man who will no doubt be missed by all who knew him and who’s lives he touched.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

The city of San Jose lost a great man this past week. Father Jim Mifsud was probably best known for his love of people, sports and of course, the sign outside his parish at Queen of Apostles Church in San Jose, just off Lawrence Expressway and Moorpark.

I may have only known him for eight years, but he was someone that my wife’s family had known for nearly two decades, if not longer. He was a good man with a heart of gold. As I mentioned, he loved his parishioners and his sports (the San Francisco Giants and San Francisco 49ers were his teams).

He baptized both my son and daughter. Actually, my son was in the last group of children that he baptized before he stepped aside at the church.

Father Jim passed away this past Wednesday at the age of 75. Memorial services will be held at Archbishop Mitty High School on Thursday, October 7 at 7 p.m. I will be there, my family will be there and I hope that anyone who’s life he touched will be able to take time out of their schedules to honor a very special man.

If you have any personal memories of Father Jim to share, please feel free to comment below.

From the San Jose Mercury News:

Mifsud never did give up, even as Parkinson’s disease slowly drained the strength from his body. When people asked why this was happening to him, he would respond, with no trace of despair, “Why not me? It happens to other people.”

When Mifsud died at 75 on Wednesday morning at the Marianist Center in Cupertino, he was arguably the best-known Catholic priest in the valley. For his funeral Thursday evening at Archbishop Mitty High School, his friends are expecting 2,000 mourners.

He was the retired pastor of Queen of Apostles, an organizer of a Marianist high school in Korea, the founder of a program for ex-cons and addicts seeking work, and a television personality. His ability to talk to anyone — in a gritty, blue-collar style — made him renowned.

When kids were dropped off in the morning at Queen of Apostles school, they’d run toward the barrel-chested priest, shouting, “Father Jim, Father Jim!” He’d respond by admonishing them: “Go back and kiss your mother goodbye!”

Mifsud was a huge San Francisco 49ers and Giants fan, a friend of former 49ers coach Steve Mariucci and ex-Giants manager Dusty Baker. But he was equally well known for spending long hours visiting inmates in jail.

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17 Comments on “RIP Father Jim Mifsud….”

  1. Honeydog Says:

    I’m sorry, John.
    This is a very nice Tribute to your Family’s dear Friend. He was obviously a genuinely kind, thoughtful, and giving Human Being who meant a great deal to, and was very much appreciated by, many people… and, despite his Affliction, I’m sure he couldn’t have asked for a better Reward in Life than that. I’m also sure he would be pleased at this affectionately-written Post, as well as all the out-pouring of Love and Admiration he is certain to hear this coming Thursday. He, no doubt, will Rest in the sweetest of Peace.
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. Paul Mifsud Says:

    Father Jim was my cousin. I had many fond memories of him and I can’t recall a time when he wasn’t smiling. He was a tough, intense man, but always had a wonderful smile and a big hug. He touched many people and lived a life filled with caring and involvement in helping others. There is a special place in heaven for this charismatic, yet humble man.

    May God bless his soul.

  3. OneOp Says:

    And a wonderful compliment you write to his life. Does he happen to have a
    brother by the name of Bill Mifsud?

  4. kreuzer33 Says:

    He does. His brother Bill lives in Hollister, California…

  5. kreuzer33 Says:

    Paul,

    Thank you for your comment. He was an incredible man. I’ve never been a strong believer in much of anything, or a church goer at all, but he made me want to go every Sunday. He brought energy and honesty to everything he said and did. My wife’s family knew him much longer than I did, but I am grateful for the time that I had.

    Mind you, he was probably looking down pretty upset at how the 49ers lost their game on Sunday. I can just hear him now…

  6. OneOp Says:

    And Bill worked for a business when it existed there called Leatherback 🙂
    Small World! Nice man too, Bill.

  7. Catherine Mifsud Says:

    Thank you for remembering my uncle. I am Bill’s youngest daughter, Catherine, and one of Uncle Jim’s 7 nieces. (I am #5). I cannot be home for the services, as I live in New Orleans now, but I know that many of your are sitting down right now for his funeral. I am comforted knowing that so many are together to remember what a minister to God’s people, Jim was.

    Thank you and God Bless..
    Catherine M. Mifsud, MA
    Director of Campus Ministry
    Jesuit High School – New Orleans, LA

  8. kreuzer33 Says:

    The memorial service was absolutely incredible. The gym was so full that they had to open up the theater on campus and simulcast the service via television. There were loud cheers of “Never Give Up” and a standing ovation as the casket made its way out of the gym. That, and his Giants won a 1-0 battle. I’m sure he was watching the game, rather than the service 🙂

  9. Robert Lim Says:

    Went to the memorial service on Thursday. Loved the imagery when Peter Peal imagined Fr. Jim and Jesus sitting back on an old comfy couch watching the Giants game with a big bowl of popcorn, and Jesus sporting a sweatshirt with a big “J” on the front. Hilarious! And by the way…Giant won! How ’bout that? Coinkydink…?

  10. Lorraine Says:

    Does anyone know roughly how many people were at Fr. Jim’s service on Oct. 7th?

  11. kreuzer33 Says:

    Lorraine…I heard that there were about 2,000 total attendees…but never saw anything official.

  12. Catherine Mifsud Says:

    I was told with the overflow in the theater, there could have been as many as 4,000 in attendance.

  13. kreuzer33 Says:

    My guess was around 3,000. But then again, we were inside the entire time and never got to see how many people were outside. It would not surprise me at all if it was closer to 4,000.

  14. Lorraine Says:

    I have heard that Fr. Jim wanted donations to be made to the Ascent Employment Program. However, the information at Archbishop Mitty High School indicates that they are to receive donations.
    I can think of half a dozen places off the top of my head, but if there is some place or organization that was Fr. Jim’s personal preference for donations upon his death — please post a response

  15. Gerry Mifsud Says:

    Jim was my oldest brother.Few knew what a terrible Family atmosphere we all grew in. Our Dad was a tormented man and abused Mom and my 5 other sweet brother’s=George, Bill, Ron me Gerry and Mike. Mom had tremendous Faith and suffered so much. She never walked the last 20 years of her life. She lived for her sons. Jim knew by 6 years old that his life was full of devotion to Mother Mary. Mom was Maryann.I was the closest to Jim and my other brother’s let Jim down so he had a limited relationship with them.Dad really kept us brother’s from bonding yet in our own way we loved one another.Jim was the lucky one and went off to the seminary and the rest of us lived a nightmare at home. Jim signed off his letter’s with Hang in there..then Never Give Up.I’m 74 now and Jim George & Bill are with Mom in Heaven, My days are winding down and soon I’ll be with them. Ron & Mike have abandoned me and don’t even talk yo each other. It’s sad so so sad. Peace and Love and let’s remember Father Jim.The best damn brother a kid could have.

  16. Joy Walsh Says:

    I’m sorry for your great loss. I, too, miss my friend, Fr. Jim. He was a great priest. He officiated at my son’s wedding, my husband’s funeral, my mother-in-law’s funeral and my son’s funeral. All who came told us what a wonderful priest we had and they would go to church if he was their priest. He also baptized two of my grandchildren near the end of his ministry. It was so hard to watch his health deteriorate but he never gave up. Don’t worry about your two other brothers, Jim and Jesus will handle them and you’ll all be together again in peace and love.


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