University Mourns Loss of Terrence Toland, S.J., 23rd President

Monday, October 21, 2013

Rev. Terrence Toland, S.J., the 23rd president of Saint Joseph's University, was called to eternal life on October 18, 2013.  Fr. Toland passed away at Manresa Hall in Merion Station, Pa. He was 90 years old, a Jesuit for 74 years and a priest for 61 years.

Fr. Toland served at the University for ten years (1966 -76), eight as president. He was Executive Vice President from 1966-68, and also served as the Rector of the Jesuit Community. In November 2012, the former Fine Arts West building on the James J. Maguire ’58 Campus was dedicated in his honor and renamed Toland Hall. “You were a model of how a Jesuit education does make a difference,” President C. Kevin Gillespie, S.J. ’72, told him at the ceremony.

Born in Philadelphia on November 25, 1922, Fr. Toland attended St. Joseph’s Preparatory School before entering the Society of Jesus at the Novitiate of St. Isaac Jogues in Wernersville on August 14, 1939. He received a Master of Arts in English and a Licentiate in Philosophy in 1946 from West Baden College (Loyola University Chicago), and was ordained on June 22, 1952.  Following tertianship in Auriesville, N.Y., he earned a Licentiate in Sacred Theology from Woodstock College in Maryland in 1953 and a Doctor of Sacred Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome in 1956.

During the last five decades, Fr. Toland has served as priest, theologian and educator. For eight years (1958–66), he was dean of faculty and prefect of studies at Woodstock College. He served as a member of the Philadelphia Archdiocesan Council of Priests, a member of the board of trustees of Rosemont College and St. Joseph’s Prep, vice chairman of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities, and on the Executive Committees of the National Catholic Education Association and the Pennsylvania Commission for Independent Colleges and Universities.

In addition to assignments at Carroll College in Montana, Wheeling Jesuit University, Georgetown University, the University of Scranton and Old St. Joseph’s Church, Fr. Toland served as Project Director for the Ex Corde Ecclesiae Implementation Committee of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (1994-99). Fr. Toland is the recipient of the 2001 Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C. Award for the distinguished service to higher education presented by the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities, an award given in recognition of his “…magnum opus of crafting many-faceted reconciliations and a new solidarity for Catholic education at the national level.”

Funeral arrangements are listed below.


Manresa Hall Sunroom 261 City Avenue Merion Station, Pa. Sunday, Oct. 27, 2- 4 p.m. (Prayer Service at 4 p.m.)

Regis Hall, Saint Joseph’s University Sunday, Oct. 27, 7-9 p.m. (Prayer Service at 8:45 p.m.)

Funeral Mass:

St. Matthias Church Bryn Mawr and Highland Avenues Bala Cynwyd, Pa., 19004 Monday, Oct.28, 7 p.m.


Tuesday, Oct. 29, Jesuit Cemetery at Wernersville, Pa.

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