A funeral mass was celebrated July 14 at St. Mary’s Church, Nutley, for Brian Thomas Lynch, 48. He passed away July 3. He resided in West New York, and served the community of Nutley as Director of Religious Education at St. Mary’s Church for 17 years. Brian received his undergraduate degree from St. John’s University, followed by a Master of Arts and Education in 1995 and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry in 1996 from Seton Hall University. Brian’s passion for learning extended far beyond the classroom. He loved to travel and immerse himself in culture through art, food, and moments in the churches of Europe. His Catholic values and love for the church led him on a lifelong path of service to others.
As Director of Religious Education at St. Mary’s Parish, he connected children, youth and adults to their best lives in Christ through education. He his time to service for various Catholic charities, his favorite being the Christmas Giving Tree, which donated hundreds of gifts annually to benefit organizations such as St. Joseph’s School for the Blind in Jersey City, Covenant House in Newark, The Retired Nuns in Englewood, the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Josephs of Peace and the Nutley Family Service Bureau’s “Adopt A Family” Program. His creative spirit and love for the St. Mary’s community extended to programs like Pancakes with Santa, Family Bingo, the Religious Education Families’ Tricky Tray and the Relay for Life.
Brian is survived by his sisters, Pamela and Melanie, their spouses, and six beautiful nieces and nephews. Pamela resides in Princeton, with her husband Scott Macaulay and their four children Michael, Matthew, Anna and Leah. Melanie lives in Atlanta with husband Kit Blanchard and daughters Bridget and Esther, who acknowledged his nurturing spirit by calling him Uncle Grandma. Brian was deeply present in the lives of these children, and rarely missed a holiday or special event. Brian shared his heart and his home with friend Nelson Paniagua and their special dog Chester. His extended family included the entire community of St. Mary’s Church and school, and countless colleagues and friends. He is also survived by his parents, Patricia Lynch and Thomas Lynch who reside in Bayonne, where Brian grew up in the glow of the lights of his other great love: New York City. He knew every great restaurant in every neighborhood and had the uncanny ability to meet you there within an hour to share a meal which was always “gorgeous.” He created light in the lives he touched, and nourished the souls and bellies of his closest friends and family. Services arranged by the Biondi Funeral Home, Nutley.

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