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Neary, Frederick (Boniface Joseph FSC)

 Record Group
Identifier: LN-400-37


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Biographical / Historical

From notice sent to Brothers and eulogy written by Michael McKenery "Brother Joseph was born on March 13, 1912 in New York City, NY. He received the habit of the Brothers of the Christian Schools on September 7, 1929 at Pocantico Hills, NY and professed his final vows in August 1937 at Oakdale, NY. He received a BA degree in Philosophy in 1933 from Catholic University of America, Washington DC and a MS degree in Psychology in 1942 from Fordham University, Bronx, NY." "In one sense the listing of Joe's apostolic assignments is endless. Looking into the list reveals the diversity of Joe's gift and his willingness to serve. He served at La Salle Academy, Saint Augustine's, Saint Raphael Academy, La Salle military Academy, Los Angeles, Sacramento, Rome, Torino and Israel. Brother Leo Kane gave me a letter that Bon Joe had written to a Search Committee of the Province in the year 1973. Joe described himself as follows: 'My style is well established: independent, sometimes noisy, always well organized, occasionally given to overacting and exaggeration, fair, combative and perchance at times, demanding.' There are many softer words which could be added but Joe had a good understanding of himself. He was always clear that what you saw is what you got. His performance and tenacity at Cathedral High School contributed to the Borhters' efforts at reversing the Cardinal's decision to close the school. Cathedral is alive and well and thriving and serving a population that needs the Brothers' presence. His were not senseless battles. They were always for a cause. Joe's dynamism, vision and talent were never more obvious than in the creation and building of this Center here at Narragansett. It is one of Bon Joe's enduring gifts to his Brothers. In the 1950's Joe spearheaded the campaign to open this facility debt free. We were a newly created District and without the resources from out sending District of New York to purchase and build out Provincialate and Novitiate. Joe was even more proud over the years about what this Center had become. It is the embodiment of the Brothers' mission to touch minds and hearts and help the young find their salvation. Joe was proud of that and of the Brothers who work with the young men entrusted to our care here at Ocean TIdes. Joe was the founding President of Bethlehem University in the Holy Land. A university which continues to this day under the direction of the De La Salle Christian Brothers. It is a presence of hope and a vital presence of the Church in a ver ytourbled area. It is one of Joe's greatest accomplishments and a monument to his talent and enthusiasm. In a 1974 article of Christian Brothers Today we read the following: 'Unlike the three wise men from the Orient, our Brother Joseph Neary did not come to Bethlehem weighed down with costly or exotic gifts. He brought only himself and his intense desire to found a Christian institution of higher learning which would be the first of its kind available to Palestinians living in the occupied areas of the West Bank.' Joe loved life and he lived it fully and with zest. It is not surprising then that he and Brother Charles Henry and their friends organized and founded the Familiares, a group of close and dear friends who are more like family to the Brothers than friends. Over the years the Familiares had enhanced the life of the Brothers through their goodness and generosity. The Familiares had a special place in his heart not for what they could do for the Brothers but because they were all special people to Joe and dear friends."


2.5 Linear Feet (5 document boxes (5"))

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Repository Details

Part of the De La Salle Christian Brothers Archives of the Long Island-New England District Repository

O'Malley Library, Room 200
4513 Manhattan College Parkway
Riverdale New York