Jesuit Father Gerald J. McIntyre died on Oct. 1, 2014, at St. Joseph’s Hospital, Syracuse, New York, after a brief illness. Age 70, he was born on Jan. 23, 1944, in New York City, the son of James and Rita (Derelle) McIntyre. He was a Jesuit for 52 years and a priest for 40 years.
He grew up in the Bronx and after four years at Fordham Prep, he entered the Society of Jesus at the Jesuit novitiate, St. Andrew-on-Hudson, in Poughkeepsie, New York on July 30, 1962. Following his novitiate and collegiate studies at St. Andrew-on-Hudson, he proceeded in 1966 to Loyola Seminary in Shrub Oak, New York, for the study of philosophy. In 1968 he began a master’s degree in English at the Catholic University of America. He completed his regency with two years of teaching English at Canisius High School in Buffalo, New York.
For the study of theology, he traveled to Woodstock College in New York City in 1971 and received his Master of Divinity degree from the college in June 1975. He was ordained to the priesthood on June 8, 1974, by Terence Cardinal Cooke at the Fordham University Church. As a newly ordained priest, he returned to Buffalo in 1975 to teach English and to serve as department chair, where he served until 1990. This long period of teaching was interrupted in 1981-82 to enable him to complete his final year of Jesuit formation, tertianship, at Tullamore, Ireland. In future years he would direct retreats in North Wales and Ireland.
In 1990-91 he taught English at Xavier High School in New York. A sabbatical year and a letter from a Jesuit colleague enticed him to volunteer to teach Jesuit scholastics in Africa. Beginning in 1991, he spent two years in Ibadan, Nigeria, teaching young African Jesuit scholastics. He then traveled further south and east to Harare, Zimbabwe. There he helped establish Arrupe College (Jesuit School of Philosophy and Humanities), where over 90 African Jesuits study. He taught English, English and African literature.
He traveled back to the United States in 2001 and returned to retreat work and spiritual direction, a deep interest and expertise. He first resided at Le Moyne College in Syracuse, New York from 2001-05 and then until 2011 at Loyola House of Retreats in Morristown, New Jersey. Most recently, he resided at the Jesuit Community of Le Moyne College. He died in Syracuse after a brief illness.