MSGR. J. WILLIAM LESTER, 90, long time priest with over 60 years of service to the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, died Saturday, February 20, 2010 at St. Joseph Hospital in Fort Wayne.
Born in Gary to the late James W. and Ida M. (Effinger) Lester, he was ordained to the priesthood on August 24, 1945 at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Fort Wayne by Bishop John F. Noll. He was one of the diocese’s much respected senior priests having served in many parishes of the diocese as pastor and administrator. He also served as Vicar General/Chancellor and Rector of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, principal of Central Catholic High School and was a former Superintendent of Catholic Schools of the diocese.
He is survived by his sister, Jeanette Lester, CSC, of St. Mary’s Convent, Notre Dame and a very large church family.
Mass of Christian Burial was 11am Thursday at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, 1122 South Clinton Street, Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades officiating, with calling from 10:00 to 10:4 am. Visitation also from 4:30 to 8:00pm Wednesday at the Cathedral with a vigil service at 7pm. Burial will be in Fairview Cemetery, Bluffton.
Donations may be made to the Msgr. Lester Scholarship Fund at Bishop Dwenger and Bishop Luers High Schools or the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend Priest’s Pension Fund.