1934 – 2007 (January 16)
Gerard Michael Duff was born on May 19, 1934, in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, the son of Patrick Duff and Mary Kiely. He had a twin brother, Lawrence, and a sister, Margaret (Purvis). He was baptized at Our Mother of Good Counsel Church, Bryn Mawr, on June 3, 1934, and attended Our Mother of Good Counsel Parochial School from 1939 to 1947. He entered Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, New York as a postulant in 1947, and Good Counsel Novitiate, New Hamburg, N.Y., in 1951. Jerry made his simple profession of vows on September 10, 1952. He then attended Villanova University and graduated in 1956 with a BA in Philosophy. He was solemnly professed on September 10, 1955, and pursued theological studies at Collegio Santa Monica, Rome, from 1956 to 1960. He was ordained to the priesthood on December 19, 1959, at the Lateran Basilica in Rome.
Father Duff's first assignment was to Monsignor Bonner High School in Drexel Hill, PA, where he taught religion and Latin beginning in 1960. In 1966, Father Duff was assigned to Saint Augustine Parish, Lawrence, Massachusetts, where he ministered for a year. From 1967 to 1972, he served as assistant pastor of Saint Thomas of Villanova Church, Rosemont, PA., and then returned to secondary education at Malvern Preparatory School. In 1975, Father Duff joined the community at Saint John Sahagun Friary in Washington, D.C., where he served as prior from 1976-1987 and taught at Archbishop Carroll High School.
Father Duff was assigned to Saint Thomas of Villanova Monastery in 1987, and for many years served the Sisters of Saint Joseph as chaplain at Saint Joseph Villa in Flourtown, PA. He was a caring observer, not one to take center stage but always one to lend a hand of support and an ear to listen. His calm disposition, combined with a significant sense of understanding, made him an approachable and respected counselor. He helped guide countless students and was also active as a counselor to those battling chemical dependency. Father Duff was deeply proud of his Irish heritage and had a keen interest in his family's history.
Father Duff passed away on January 16, 2007. His funeral Mass was held January 23 at Saint Thomas of Villanova Church, Villanova, PA. He was buried at Calvary Cemetery, Conshohocken, PA.