File #: 210753    Version: 0 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: ADOPTED
File created: 9/23/2021 In control: CITY COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action: 9/30/2021
Title: Also naming the 2000 block of Christian Street "John Van de Paer Way" to honor the life and legacy of Father John Van de Paer.
Sponsors: Councilmember Johnson, Councilmember Parker, Councilmember Domb, Councilmember Brooks, Councilmember Thomas, Councilmember Squilla, Councilmember Green, Councilmember Bass, Councilmember Gym, Councilmember Gilmore Richardson
Attachments: 1. Resolution No. 21075300, 2. Signature21075300
Also naming the 2000 block of Christian Street "John Van de Paer Way" to honor the life and legacy of Father John Van de Paer.

WHEREAS, Father John Van de Paer was born in Antwerp, Belgium, on November 29, 1920. His parents enrolled him and his brother in Catholic school, where he became interested in the idea of religious life and missionary work. Upon his graduation from high school in 1940, he joined the Congregation of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, also known as Missionhurst; and

WHEREAS, After ordination on January 26, 1947, Father John was assigned to work in the United States as parochial vicar at Saint Cyprian Church in Columbus, Ohio. In 1952, he was transferred to Saint Charles Borromeo Church in Philadelphia, a largely African American parish, where he served from 1952 through 1995 as parochial vicar and, later, pastor; and

WHEREAS, A natural entrepreneur, Father John knew how to raise money for the church from operating the roller-skating rink, a fleet of church buses, and various parish fundraisers. Those fundraisers helped to fund the youth programs and the grade school, kept the cost of tuition down, and enabled the construction of the parish halls and the remodeling of the gym. These programs not only served the community, but they also provided leadership opportunities for the parishioners. Father John promoted leadership development for all, and under his guidance there was always something going on at Saint Charles to help the community grow and thrive; and

WHEREAS, Father John's impact on South Philadelphia was immense. He served his loyal parishioners for over 40 years and sought to build the church into a social hub for the neighborhood. He stood as father figure to many children who lacked one, and often went to court hearings for young men in the neighborhood who had contact with the criminal justice system. Moreover, he told the teachers at the parish school that they were never to expel Black boys for whom getting kicke...

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