Father Eugene C. Renard, SJ, died Sept. 25 at St. Ignatius Hall in Florissant. He was 93 years old, a Jesuit for 76 years and a priest for 63 years. A memorial Mass was celebrated Oct. 7 in the Jesuit chapel at St. Ignatius Hall at Garden Villas North in Florissant.
Eugene C. Renard was born Oct. 29, 1929, in Richmond Heights to Eugene C. Renard Sr. and Louise Janes Renard. Following his graduation from St. Louis University High School, he entered the Society of Jesus at St. Stanislaus Seminary in Florissant on Aug. 8, 1947. He pronounced first vows on Aug. 15, 1949, and was ordained to the priesthood on June 15, 1960, at St. Mary’s College in St. Marys, Kansas. He pronounced final vows in the Society on Sept. 9, 1978, at St. Francis Xavier “College” Church in St. Louis.
Father Renard’s first apostolic mission as a priest was as socius, or assistant, to the master of novices at St. Stanislaus Seminary in Florissant, from 1962-64. He then taught at Regis High School in Denver until 1973, before beginning a ministry as director of the nursing community, first at the Regency Nursing Inn (1973-74) and then at Grand Manor (1974-79), both in St. Louis.
Following a brief sabbatical, Father Renard turned to direct pastoral work, serving as associate pastor and then pastor and superior at parishes in Colorado: Sacred Heart Parish in Denver, 1980-88; St. Joseph Church in Pueblo, 1988-89; and Holy Trinity Parish in Trinidad, 1989-2006.
From 2006-15, he served as a retreat and spiritual director at White House Jesuit Retreat in St. Louis.
In 2015, he was missioned to Jesuit Hall as a pastoral minister but was assigned to a ministry of prayer in 2018. He moved with the rest of the community to St. Ignatius Hall in January.
Following humanities studies in the seminary, Father Renard earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy at Saint Louis University. He also earned both a master’s in Latin and a bachelor’s degree in sacred theology from Saint Louis University.
Though retiring by nature, Father Renard embraced assignments that challenged and stretched him. His sweet disposition and pastoral sensitivity shone through his illness to the very end.
Father Renard is survived by his sister, Sister Elizabeth (Betty) Renard, RSCJ, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
Father Renard donated his body to science.