NOTRE DAME, Ind. Rev. Joseph Francis Geniesse, C.S.C., 85, died at Holy Cross House, Notre Dame, Ind. on Tuesday, June 28, 2016.
He was born on Sept. 30, 1930, to Levi A. and Chloe (Wells) Geniesse in Green Bay, Wis. Fr. Geniesse attended St. John the Evangelist Grade School and graduated from Central Catholic High School run by the Norbertine Fathers. He was received into the Congregation of Holy Cross on Aug. 5, 1951. Fr. Geniesse professed his First Vows on Aug. 16, 1952. He earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the University of Notre Dame in 1954 and was sent to Rome, Italy to continue studies at the Gregorian University and was ordained to the priesthood on Oct. 27, 1957, at the Collegio di Santa Croce, the seminary for Holy Cross students in Rome.
To watch a video of Fr. Geniesse’s Funeral Mass, please visit: https://youtu.be/25pJXnKqx1o
Upon returning to the United States in 1958, Fr. Geniesse taught mathematics, religion and assumed other duties at Notre Dame High School for Boys in Niles, Illinois. After completing a Masters degree from Marquette University in Education in 1964, he moved to the Mission Band in Notre Dame, Ind. From 1965 to 1967, he served as a Chaplain at the University of Southern Louisiana in Lafayette, La., then as Chaplain of Nichols State University in Thibodaux, La. from 1967 to 1968. From 1968 to 1977, he served as Chaplain of Emory University and Agnes Scott College in Atlanta, Ga., before moving to Houston, Texas, where he served as Chaplain of St. Joseph Hospital from 1977 to 1978. After further studies to attain a certificate in counseling from the University of Houston, and a one year teaching post at St. Pius X High School in Houston, he moved back to Lafayette, Louisiana, where he served as Counselor at Catholic Social Services from 1981 to 1983; as Director/Counselor, Pastoral Counseling Center, from 1983 to 1988; and Counselor at the Immaculata Center from 1988 to 1991. In 1991, Fr. Geniesse moved back to Austin, Texas and served as a Director/Chaplain at Incarnate Word College in San Antonio, before pursuing his continuing theological education in the fall of 1993. In 1994, he became the chaplain of Seton Medical Center in Austin, Texas, where he served for eight years. In 2002, Fr. Geniesse was appointed associate pastor at St. John Neumann parish in Austin, where he remained for six years. From 2008 to 2014, Fr. Geniesse performed parish assistance inAustin, Texas while living atthe Brother Andre Residence.Fr. Geniesse moved to Holy Cross House in 2014.
Preceding him in death are his parents, Levi and Chloe, and sister, Marie Geniesse Alger.
Surviving are his sisters, Sr. Virginia Geniesse, O.P., and Lucia Geniesse; brother, Peter A. (Jill) Geniesse; nephews Michael Alger, David Alger, Mark Alger, Paul Alger, Peter Geniesse; and nieces, Suzanne Alger Engles and Barbara Alger Marienbach.
Visitation will be from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday (July 5, 2016) at Moreau Seminary, where there will be a Wake Service at 7:30 p.m. The Funeral Mass will be at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday (July 6, 2016) at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart at Notre Dame. Burial will be in the community cemetery at Notre Dame. Kaniewski Funeral Home, South Bend, is in charge of the arrangements.
Memorial contributions in support of the mission and ministries of the Congregation of Holy Cross can be made to: United States Province of Priests and Brothers, Office of Development, P.O. Box 765, Notre Dame, IN 46556-0765 or online at donate.holycrossusa.org.