It is with regret that we announce the death of Fr. Terence J. Lee, MHM at the age of 85. Fr. Lee was born in Cootehill, Co. Cavan, Ireland. Beloved son of the late Margaret (nee McCabe) and Thomas Lee. Loving brother of Hugh, Eddie, Mary, Annie, Aidan, Josephine and the late Patrick, Michael, Tommie and Brendan. Fr. Lee was also a proud uncle of 28 nieces and nephews.
One of his brothers, Hugh, also joined the Mill Hill Missionaries. From 1946 to 1951 he followed secondary education at our college in Freshford. Then he went to Roosendaal to study Philosophy for two years. During the following four years he studied Theology in St Joseph’s College, Mill Hill, London. He took the Perpetual Oath on 7th May 1956 and was ordained priest on 7th July 1957 by William Cardinal Godfrey. After ordination Fr. Lee was appointed to study for a degree in Agriculture at the University of Cork. After three years in Cork the course was transferred to Dublin. He complemented this with a one year course leading to a Diploma in Higher Education in 1963. He was then appointed for three years to the teaching staff of our college in Freshford. Following this he was appointed to North America where he spent the next 52 years, almost his entire missionary life. He worked in St. Louis for eleven years, and subsequently served in Los Angeles and in New York. Most of these years he was appointed to Society positions as rector, regional bursar, and consultor. In 1995 he was elected Regional Representative and was re-elected to this post in 1998.
Fr. Lee dedicated most of his time to work that was vital to the Society’s mission worldwide, in particular mission animation and fund-raising, but he also took great interest in urban pastoral work. The missionary zeal with which Fr. Lee applied himself to his work is summed up aptly in the words to be found in a General Council visitation report: “I found Fr. Lee genuinely interested in his work and ready to do for the Society whatever he can”. The pastoral supply work which he continued in different parishes up until recently was much appreciated by the parishioners.
Last year he celebrated his Diamond Jubilee and despite advancing age and illness remained active and enthusiastic in his role as rector and in pastoral work.
The wake will be held at Riverdale-on-Hudson Funeral Home,6110 Riverdale Avenue the Bronx, NY, on Sunday April 29th from 6-9 pm and Monday April 30th from 2-5 & 7-9 pm. Mass of Christian Burial 10 am Tuesday at St. Margaret of Cortona Church, 6000 Riverdale Avenue, Bronx NY. Committal private. Fr. Lee's ashes will be brought to Ireland for interment in the Mill Hill plot in Bohernabreena Cemetery in Dublin.