Father Jaime I. Rasura, SJ, who faithfully ministered to the people of Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in San Diego for 52 years, died of natural causes at Sacred Heart Jesuit Center in Los Gatos, California, on January 15, 2021. He was 96 and had been a Jesuit for 77 years.
Fr. Rasura was born in El Paso, Texas, on September 9, 1924, the fifth of six children of Felix and Josefina Urrutia Rasura. He was an infant when the family relocated to Los Angeles. He attended Loyola High School, where he discerned a vocation as a Jesuit priest. He graduated in 1943 and entered the Sacred Heart Jesuit novitiate at Los Gatos to study for the priesthood.
He followed the usual course of studies: humanities at Los Gatos, philosophy at Gonzaga University, a three-year period of teaching at Loyola High School and theology studies at Alma College in Los Gatos, a campus of Santa Clara University. He was ordained a priest in 1956. After completing an additional year of spiritual studies, he received his first, and as it turned out, his only assignment, in 1958: parish priest at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, serving the Mexican American community in the Logan Barrio of San Diego.
Fr. Rasura busied himself with every aspect of parish life and touched the lives of every community in the large parish, including the women’s group devoted to Our Lady of Guadalupe, the men’s prayer group, the hospital and homebound and the altar boys. In addition to the people of his parish, he also was involved in religious education for high school students outside the parish and in prison ministry. He maintained longtime affiliations with the Knights of Columbus and Kiwanis Club.
In 2010, Fr. Rasura retired from active pastoral ministry and moved to Sacred Heart Jesuit Center in Los Gatos, where he began his Jesuit life, taking up a ministry of prayer and presence to the community. He enjoyed painting and his good baritone voice could be heard singing along with the mariachi band at the annual Cinco de Mayo celebrations held in the community.
Fr. Rasura is survived by a niece, Mary Ross, of Los Angeles, a cousin, Fr. Louis Peinado, SJ, of Los Gatos, and several members of the extended Rasura family. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, services will be closed to the public. To view Fr. Rasura’s livestreamed funeral Mass, click here.