EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

December 27, 2012

The Reverend James M. Carroll, 72

Georgetown, MA — The Reverend James M. Carroll passed December 24, 2012 in Newburyport, MA. Fr. Jim was born Nov. 8, 1940 in Lawrence, MA, the son of the late James M. Carroll, Sr. and Margaret M. (Bennert) Carroll of Thorndike Street, Lawrence and Seabrook Beach, NH. 

He attended grade school at the Hood School in Lawrence and graduated from St. John’s Preparatory School, Danvers, MA - Class of 1958. Following graduation he entered Cardinal O’ Connell Seminary in 1960 and later studied at St. John’s Seminary. Fr. Carroll was ordained as diocesan priest in the Archdiocese of Boston, in May, 1968 and was devoted to ministry in the Merrimack Valley and always asked for a parish in that area. He served as curate at St. Patrick’s Church of Groveland, Mass., and later at St. Monica’s Parish in Methuen, MA. While at St. Monica’s he was recognized as Methuen's Man of the Year, he was Police Department Chaplain in Methuen where he gained a reputation for being effective with troubled youth, and served on the Board of the Henry C. Nevins Home, a position he was asked to continue to fill when he moved to Haverhill.

When Father Carroll left Methuen, he was presented with a policeman’s ring by the Department, a gift he cherished, in recognition of his service and the stature he had gained with them. Later he was assigned as pastor of St. Rita’s Church in Haverhill, MA and then at St. Mary’s of Georgetown. He oversaw the merger of St. Mary’s in Rowley with St. Mary's in Georgetown, MA and served as Vicar of the Haverhill Vicariate.

As a life-long summer resident and later a year-round resident of Seabrook Beach he had a lifelong love of the ocean. Jim worked as a mate for Eastman’s Fishing during his teenage years from the time he was 12, starting with current owner Les Eastman’s grandfather, Oscar Eastman. The Eastmans were Jim’s other family. He later narrated whale watches for Eastman’s Fishing and enjoyed bringing his nephew out on whale watches, as well as always organizing a summer parish trip. He retired from active parish life in 2010 for health reasons, but not his ministry, and assisted at Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Parish in Hampton, NH. Father Carroll was dedicated to his vocation, and for 42 years carried out his work with devotion, humility, kindness and humor. True to his calling, he always reached out to those less fortunate, and embraced as his friends many who were marginalized by society.

He is survived by his brother and sister in law Joseph C. Carroll and Kathleen A. Carroll of New London, NH, nephew Michael C. Carroll of New London, NH and niece Erin K. Carroll of New York City. He is also survived by several cousins, including Mary Cain Canto of North Andover, and many close friends, as well as former parishoners who became lifelong friends. He was predeceased by several aunts, uncles and cousins, including close cousin Mary Deane Bennert. 

ARRANGEMENTS: A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday 10 AM at St. Mary's Church in Georgetown. Family and friends may call on Friday from 4 to 7 pm also at St. Mary's church in Georgetown.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a gift in Father Jim’s memory to the NHSPCA, 104 Portsmouth Avenue, Stratham, NH 03885, The American Diabetes Association 1701 N. Beauregard St. Alexandria, VA 22311, or to a charity of your choice. To leave on-line condolences please visit www.contefuneralhomes.com