1917 – 2016


Given by Brother Edward Phelan, FSC
Mass of Christian Burial
De La Salle Hall, Lincroft, NJ
Tuesday, October 4, 2016


A reflection on the life of Brother James Hogan

The passing of a friend, partner, or community mate is a deeply moving event, not only because of the loss of a cherished companion, but I believe because his or her passing reminds us of personal qualities within ourselves that we cherish and do not want to lose. In other words, the attractive qualities we each identify in Brother James Hogan are in a strange way our own best qualities. Beautiful people see beauty in the world and, I suppose, angry people see anger all around them. I propose that Jimmy’s passing can really be an affirmation for each of us to grow the qualities within ourselves that he reflected to us in his life.

Jimmy’s teaching career earlier in life was, for the most part, in a boys’ high school where the students were preparing to join the Brothers. It was the “Juniorate” in Barrytown. For 20 years he taught all the physics, chemistry, mathematics and health courses from his one little science lab. He will always be remembered for his lively and enthusiastic teaching style. He had a keen sense of humor and was always the first and loudest to laugh at his own jokes. All knew him then as “BJ.”

On occasion his humor was more subtle. As a 10 year old child prodigy, he found himself playing the piano at Carnegie Hall where he won a scholarship to the Bronx School of Music. Jimmy was an accomplished organist in Barrytown for most of those 20 years. The local priest, Father Carroll, affectionately known as “Pop Carroll” because of his advancing age and his very limited hearing, would celebrate daily liturgy. Our BJ from time to time would softly play a drum beat on the organ that would correspond to “Pop’s” stride across the sanctuary. “Pop” never heard it but all us youths smiled reverently at BJ’s humor.

On another occasion, when BJ thought everyone had left the chapel, he let out all the stops on the organ to the tune of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.” Unaware that a much feared superior named Luke heard the whole thing, Jim had some serious explaining to do about this highly irreverent performance.

For many years after Barrytown, Jim’s energy was devoted to positions of assistant treasurer and accountant. He was never in charge but always willing to get the job done. He was humble and

never expected any special treatment. As an active member of the Provincialate community on 105th street in Manhattan in the early 1970s, when crime was somewhat popular on the streets of NYC, he was a founding member of the 105th street security patrol. The group had whistles hanging in the windows of their houses and apartments so that, at the moment a crime or untoward event was spotted on the street, the neighborhood would be alerted. Jimmy took the program so seriously that he often challenged children playing games involving whistles on the street.

More recently, in the last three or four years here at De La Salle, all of you have come to know this remarkable man who always seemed to be happy; he greeted each person, even if the name eluded him; and he always spoke kindly of others. Ask any of the staff here and they will say he always said “thank you” and was grateful for the smallest things. He offered proposals at meetings that seemed zany but were always logical and above all for the benefit of the common good.

Brother James had a mind for details. Much of his breakfast time was spent in writing detailed notes on the daily menu. He planned on getting to 99 years. Many are saying that he failed to achieve that goal by two months. But these naysayers are wrong because we Catholic Christians believe we are all here in this world for many months before we see the light of day. So he went over 99. The name Hogan means “descendant of the youthful one.” He was a youthful 99!!!

He may have also planned his transition to the next world. On the day he died, in the US mail, I received a letter from him that he must have printed from his computer days before. It said: “Dear Brother Edward Phelan, Please have my personal e mail brjimhogan@yahoo.com removed from the yearly published listing for all the District. Gratefully, Br. James Hogan”

Live Brother James, Jimmy, Jim, BJ in our hearts. Forever.

Please pray for the happy repose of the soul of Brother James Hogan, FSC

Born James Joseph Hogan in New York, NY, on December 1, 1917

Entered the Barrytown, NY, Juniorate on June 27, 1931, and Novitiate in June, 1934

Received the Religious Habit and Name, Brother Aelred James, on September 7, 1934

Pronounced Perpetual Vows in Barrytown, NY, in 1942

Br. James died at De La Salle Hall, Lincroft, NJ, on September 28, 2016


Monday, October 3, 2016 Viewing from 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Tuesday, October 4, 2016 Viewing from 10:00 am – 11:00 am
Mass of Christian Burial at 11:00 am

De La Salle Hall
810 Newman Springs Road
Lincroft, NJ 07738-1608

Burial following at St. Gabriel’s Cemetery, Marlboro, NJ


District: 100 masses
De La Salle Hall community: 30 masses
Each community in the District: 1 mass

Brother James died peacefully in the late evening at De La Salle Hall. May he rest in peace.


New York, NY
St. Jerome’s School

Barrytown, NY

West New York, NJ
St. Joseph’s School

Washington, D.C.
De La Salle

assistant treasurer
New York, NY

New York, NY
La Salle Academy

New York, NY

Albany, NY
Christian Brothers Academy

Syracuse, NY
Christian Brothers Academy

Lincroft, NJ
De La Salle Hall

Lincroft, NJ
Christian Brothers Academy

Lincroft, NJ
De La Salle Hall