Msgr. Joseph George, retired St. Paschal pastor, dies at 79

Funeral Mass was celebrated Dec. 22 at St. Paschal Baylon Church in Thousand Oaks, for Msgr. Joseph S. George, retired pastor, who died Dec. 18 at the age of 79.

Msgr. George was ordained to the priesthood in 1962 and served the Archdiocese in a variety of ministries including advocate and Defender of the Bond in the Marriage Tribunal and on the faculty of St. John’s Seminary. 

Born in Buffalo, N.Y. (the second of six children), he attended St. Augustine School, Culver City; St. Monica High School, Santa Monica; and Loyola University, earning his bachelor’s degree in industrial relations. He then served three years in the U.S. Air Force, earning officer status before he entered St. John's Seminary, Camarillo, and was ordained April 30, 1962 at St. Vibiana’s Cathedral. His classmates included Cardinal Roger Mahony and San Francisco Archbishop George Niederauer.

He served as associate pastor at St. Eugene Church, Los Angeles (1962-65), earned a doctorate in canon law from the Catholic University of America, and served on the St. John’s Seminary faculty as a professor of canon law (1968-73). He then was an advocate and Defender of the Bond in the Marriage Tribunal (1973-77), and archdiocesan liaison for Marriage Encounter, continuing his Marriage Encounter service after he became St. Paschal Baylon’s pastor in 1983.

In his 19 years at St. Paschal, as its population soared to more than 4,000 families amidst rapid growth in the Conejo Valley, Msgr. George oversaw a major renovation project that updated the church, school, hall, pastoral center and priests’ living quarters. Upon its completion, he thanked the community for believing in the dream: “God bless you for your goodness and for the great effort you put forth.”

He was named a prelate of honor (monsignor) in 1988; was dean of Deanery 4 (1986-96); and retired in 2002, becoming pastor emeritus. He lived privately with his brother, Msgr. Alexander George, retired pastor of Christ the King Church in Hollywood.

A Vigil and Rosary was celebrated Dec. 21, and burial was at Holy Cross Cemetery, Culver City. Condolence cards can be sent to his brother, Msgr. Alexander George, 65565 Acoma Ave., Space 118, Desert Hot Springs, CA 92240. 

Sr. M. Carmelita (Josephine) Morales, CSC Funeral Mass was celebrated Dec. 20 in Notre Dame, Indiana, for Holy Cross Sister M. Carmelita (Josephine) Morales, 97, who died recently. 

A 16th generation “Venturian” (her family was among the first settlers of Ventura) Sister Morales taught more than 50 years in the western states, including elementary, junior and senior high schools in Fresno, Los Angeles, Ventura and Covina. She also served in parish ministry, taught religious education and in RCIA. 

She retired to Saint Catherine by the Sea Convent, Ventura, and in 2010 returned to the Holy Cross Sisters’ motherhouse at St. Mary’s, Notre Dame, where she was active in the ministry of prayer until her death. She is survived by her sister and a niece. 

Memorial contributions may be made to the Sisters of the Holy Cross, Ministry with the Poor, Saint Mary’s, Notre Dame, IN 46556 or at