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Father Joe Carroll remembered as 'a good priest'

Father Joe’s service was held at Saint Rita Catholic Church in Valencia Park, where Father Joe worked as a parish priest in the early 1980s.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — Hundreds of family, friends, and community members gathered to say goodbye Tuesday morning to Father Joe, who will forever be remembered as a priest who devoted his life to helping those in need.

“A good priest,” said Most Reverend John Doland. “These are the words that Father Joe had requested to be placed on his burial marker. A good priest. Indeed, he was.”

Father Joe’s service was held at Saint Rita Catholic Church in Valencia Park, where Father Joe worked as a parish priest in the early 1980s. 

He later moved on to St. Vincent De Paul's where he found his passion - helping San Diegans living on the street. 

“Joe had such a great love for, and respect for, the human person,” said Reverend Monsignor Terrence Fleming from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. “The poor and the homeless - he loved them.”

His passion for helping those without a home led to accolades and honors from leaders around the world, but rather than resting on his past accomplishments, Father Joe always pushed to do more. 

“His walls were covered with post-it notes and calendar items and other important messages,” Most Reverend Doland said. “His office was a reflection of a man who was always thinking, always creating, and one might say always scheming.”

Father Joe may be gone, but the message today was clear - It's our job to make sure he will never be forgotten. 

“He's done,” Most Reverent Doland said. “He finished the race and he fought the good fight for his neighbors. He did what he could do and now it is up to us to continue to be neighbors helping neighbors.”

A Celebration of Life ceremony for Father Joe will be held August 10th at the San Diego Convention Center. 

For more information, and to register, click on this link. https://support.neighbor.org/event/celebration-of-life-for-father-joe-carroll/e347750

WATCH RELATED: Father Joe Carroll's memorial service in San Diego (July 2021)

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