Joseph Clarence Hindley was a devout Catholic, a life-long Californian, a dedicated teacher and former director of Together in Mission for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
But, most of all, Hindley — who died peacefully Aug. 9 in Anaheim at 74 — was beloved by all who knew him. “Everybody loves Joe,” according to his sons Eric and John.
One of four children, Hindley was born Dec. 23, 1940 to Mary Ellen and Joseph Hindley in Pasadena. He went to high school at St. Anthony Catholic Seminary in Santa Barbara and later attended Immaculate Heart College, where he earned a B.A. in liberal arts with an emphasis in English and theology.
In 1964, he married his wife Anne in Santa Barbara, and they went on to have their two sons, Eric and John. The couple later happily welcomed two grandchildren — Kiah and Lincoln — as well as several nieces and nephews. Joseph and Anne were married for nearly 30 years before she passed away in 1994.
According to his sons, the major highlight of their father’s professional life was the 19 years he served as a teacher at St. Athanasius School in Long Beach, where “‘Mr. H’ had a profound and enduring influence on the lives of hundreds of students.”
During his nearly two-decade tenure, Hindley taught English, conducted the student choir, created a chemistry lab and managed the school’s theater group.
After St. Athanasius School, Hindley briefly switched professional gears and worked for a few years as a bank branch manager. He eventually returned to a life of service, first as a lay administrator for three Catholic parishes, after which he devoted almost 20 years to Together in Mission, where he went on to serve as the director of the archdiocesan office until he retired in August 2013.
Part of the annual Catholic appeal, Together in Mission provides basic necessities for 81 churches and 63 schools in need across the archdiocese. This year, charitable contributions made through Together in Mission will help support more than 12,000 students and 175,000 parish families.
In a joint statement signed by nearly half a dozen former Together in Mission colleagues, Hindley is described as a “very dear man” who was “loved by many.”
“[He] was very enthusiastic every year [when] we were going to start the new campaign. He used to love going to the schools and parishes and talking to parishioners, interviewing the kids, the teachers and pastors,” according to the statement.
“He would come back and he would mention how much he enjoyed sharing with the kids. … [Joseph] was very patient. He would also enjoy going to the training sessions, where he had the opportunity to share with the pastors and the parish staff.”
Hindley remained active in his parish, St. Athanasius Church in Long Beach, well into his 70s — teaching, organizing the annual carnival, helping construct the parish hall, and serving as eucharistic minister, on the liturgical council and as master of ceremonies for holiday Masses. Hindley, who was “forever a servant to those he loved,” will be remembered for his loyalty, his generous heart, his sense of integrity and his commitment to his family and community, said his sons.
A funeral Mass for Joseph Hindley was celebrated Aug. 13 at St. Athanasius. Memorial donations may be sent to the Together in Mission annual appeal.