1919 – 2004 (February 10)
Joseph Francis Hartman was born April 10, 1919 in Audubon, New Jersey to Lambert J. Hartman and Jennie King, and was baptized May 4, 1919 at Saint Rose Church, Haddon Heights, New Jersey. After graduating from Saint Rose Parochial School in 1933, he enrolled in Camden Catholic High School, Camden, N.J., and after two years transferred to Collingswood High School, Collingswood, N.J., which awarded him a high school diploma in 1937. He then attended Camden County Vocational School from 1937 until 1939. Joseph entered the Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, New York, as a post-graduate postulant in September 1939. He was received into the novitiate on September 9, 1940, and professed simple vows on September 10, 1941. He earned a B.A. in Philosophy from Villanova College in 1944 and pronounced solemn vows on September 10, 1944. He was ordained a priest June 10, 1947, following theological studies at Augustinian College, Washington, D.C. He received an M. A. in Education, with a minor in Physics, from the Catholic University of America, Washington, and did additional studies at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts (Westinghouse Fellowship); Loyola University, Chicago, Illinois; University of Detroit, Detroit, Michigan; Ss. Cyril and Methodius Seminary, Orchard Lake, Michigan; St. John's University of Collegeville's Jerusalem Extension, Israel, and St. John University, Plymouth, Michigan.
Father Hartman was assigned to Saint Rita High School, Chicago, in 1948. He was named Principal of Saint Augustine Seminary High School, Holland, Michigan, in 1963, but returned to Chicago in 1964, serving as Vice-Principal for Studies at Mendel Catholic High School there. Father Hartman was Chaplain for the Chicago Fire Department for many years. In 1966, he was assigned to Austin Catholic High School, Detroit.
In 1978, Father Hartman was transferred to Saint Mary Parish, Rockford, Illinois, as associate pastor. He became associate at Saint Matthew Parish, Flint, Michigan, in 1979, and pastor in 1980. During his time in Flint, he also served as Administrator of Christ the King Parish for a short time.
He became associate pastor of Saint Joseph Parish, Pekin, Illinois in 1988, and moved, in 1994, to Saint Clare of Montefalco Parish, Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan, where he remained active in ministry until illness necessitated his hospitalization in late December 2003.
Father Hartman was interested in people. He consistently maintained a positive attitude toward others and was constantly affirming the goodness that he saw in others. Particularly after the Second Vatican Council, his Christ-centered spirituality grew and deepened, and he became a man of profound prayer. He died February 10, 2004 at Bon Secours Nursing and Rehab Center, St. Clair Shores, Michigan, following a six-week illness, and is buried at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Detroit, Michigan