September 27, 2023 – Father Eugene C. Renard, SJ, died Sept. 25, 2023, at St. Ignatius Hall in Florissant, Missouri. He was 93 years old, a Jesuit for 76 years and a priest for 63 years.
A priest of unfailing kindness, in a final act of generosity, Fr. Renard donated his body to science. His Memorial Mass will be celebrated in the Jesuit chapel at St. Ignatius Hall at Garden Villas North in Florissant on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023, at 10:30 a.m. A visitation will precede it beginning at 10:00 a.m.
The Mass will be livestreamed and can be found at bit.ly/Fr-Renard-Memorial or through a YouTube search for “Memorial Mass for Fr. Gene Renard, SJ.”
Eugene C. Renard was born in Richmond Heights, Missouri, on Oct. 29, 1929, to Eugene C. Renard, Sr., and Louise Janes Renard. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his sisters, Louise Berglund and Anne Smith. He is survived by his sister, Sister Elizabeth (Betty) Renard, RSCJ, as well as by numerous nieces and nephews.
Following his graduation from St. Louis University High School, he entered the Society of Jesus at St. Stanislaus Seminary in Florissant on Aug. 8, 1947. He pronounced first vows on Aug. 15, 1949, and was ordained to the priesthood on June 15, 1960, at St. Mary’s College in St. Marys, Kansas. He pronounced final vows in the Society on Sept. 9, 1978, at St. Francis Xavier College Church in St. Louis.
Father Renard’s first apostolic mission as a priest was as socius, or assistant, to the master of novices at St. Stanislaus Seminary in Florissant, from 1962 to 1964. He then taught at Regis High School in Denver until 1973, before beginning a ministry as director of the nursing community, first at the Regency Nursing Inn (1973-74) and then at Grand Manor (1974-79), both in St. Louis.
Following a brief sabbatical, Fr. Renard turned to direct pastoral work, serving as associate pastor and then pastor and superior at parishes in Colorado: Sacred Heart Parish in Denver, 1980-88, St. Joseph Church in Pueblo, 1988-89 and Holy Trinity Parish in Trinidad, 1989-2006.
From 2006 to 2015, he served as a retreat and spiritual director at White House Jesuit Retreat in St. Louis.
In 2015, he was missioned to Jesuit Hall as a pastoral minister, but was assigned to a ministry of prayer in 2018. He moved with the rest of the community to St. Ignatius Hall in January.
Following humanities studies in the seminary, Fr. Renard earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy at Saint Louis University. He also earned both a Master of Arts in Latin and a bachelor’s degree in sacred theology from Saint Louis University.
Though retiring by nature, Fr. Renard embraced assignments that challenged and stretched him. His sweet disposition and pastoral sensitivity shone through his illness to the very end.
We remember with gratitude all that God has done through his life of service to God and God’s people.
Memorial gifts may be made to the USA Central and Southern Province of the Society of Jesus at 4511 West Pine Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63108 or through this website.