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We Remember - Fr. Eugene Faucher (1925-2012)

Introduction

Fr. Eugene Faucher came to St. Edna in 1995.  Together with his dear friend, Fr. John Hurley, he served St. Edna Parish for almost 20 years until his passing on July 15th, 2012.

A Tribute to Fr. Eugene Faucher

The following tribute to Fr. Eugene Faucher was given by Fr. Jerry Jacob on Sunday, July 22, 2012.

This past Sunday, July 15, 2012 at 1:20 p.m. our beloved Fr. Gene Faucher died peacefully in his own bed at the rectory while Fr. Hurley, Fr. Berrio and myself anointed him. It was as if he was waiting for that precise sacramental moment to enter into Eternal Life. Fr. Gene was truly a kind and gentle soul. A lover of souls, he possessed a childlike innocence. He had a way of making everyone he met feel valued and respected. He was generous to a fault. He had no use for material possessions and lived a very simple life. He lived a life of radical gratitude thanking God and everyone every chance he got. He will be deeply missed.

Rev. Eugene Joseph Faucher would have been 87 on August 17th. He is the beloved son of the late Edward and Florence, loving brother of Jane Ryan, the late Sister Rita and Edward; and uncle to many nieces and nephews. I am personally grateful for the care that Joan Heveran provided for Fr. Gene these past years. Truly, Fr. Gene had a happy retirement and was grateful for his many friends, especially Fr. John Hurley. Fr. Hurley and Fr. Faucher had an amazing friendship. They truly were a team and they were able to help each other exercise their priestly duties as they each dealt with the effects of growing older. The picture below of Fr. Faucher and Fr. Hurley was his last public appearance at VBS (Vacation Bible School) in June 2012.

 Fr. Faucher was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Chicago on May 3, 1951. Fr. Faucher served as an associate pastor at St. Mark's Parish (1951-1955), a resident at Our Lady of Mount Carmel (1955-1967), an assistant pastor at St. Bernardine (1967-1975); pastor at St. Martha's in Morton Grove (1976-1995). He received an M.A. in Religious Education in 1961 from Loyola University, and an M.A. in Classical Languages from Loyola in 1963. Fr. Faucher was a member of Archbishop Quigley Seminary from 1955-1967 as a professor of Greek, Latin and Religion and was greatly respected by his colleagues and the seminarians that he taught.

Fr. Faucher was Pastor of Saint Martha in Morton Grove from 1975 until his retirement to Saint Edna in 1995. While pastor of Saint Martha, he was known for his meaningful homilies and for his excellent presiding at Mass. Fr. Faucher provided the necessary leadership for the planning and relocation of the sanctuary and formed the first parish council. He was loved by many at Saint Martha. Below is a picture of Fr. Faucher on the steps of Saint Martha with the late Joseph Cardinal Bernardin after a Confirmation ceremony.

Fr. Faucher never really considered himself to be retired. In over ten years that I lived and served with him at Saint Edna, he only complained once because he was not scheduled to preside at enough Sunday Masses. Fr. Gene never said no to a request for a baptism or anointing. He served for a number of years at Addolorata Senior Living Community in Wheeling, offering Mass, reconciliation and anointing of the sick.

Fr. Gene Faucher enjoyed being a priest; in fact he was the happiest and most content priest I have ever known. He will be missed by all who knew and loved him. The following is taken from an interview about priesthood on his 55th anniversary:

"Our calling as Catholics to be God's people is not an onerous burden, but a gift. We have been called, and have a purpose from Him. For that reason, I have never tired of saying the Mass during these 55 years. It is the best prayer that Jesus has given us to thank God for all of his blessings."

I pray I can pay foreword the example and generosity he has shown me.