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Rev. Thomas Ryan

Rev. Thomas Ryan

Jun 2, 1944 - Jan 2, 2024

Rev. Thomas Ryan - Obituary


ather Thomas E. Ryan, 79, a beloved Catholic priest who celebrated his golden jubilee this past October, passed away on January 2, 2024. Born in Pittsburgh, PA, on June 2, 1944, Father Ryan graduated from Pittsburgh's Central Catholic High School, where he first felt the call to his vocation, and from La Salle University in Philadelphia. He joined the Christian Brothers' order and, while teaching at Calvert Hall College High School, was drawn to the priesthood. After completing studies at St. Mary's Seminary in Baltimore, MD, he was ordained at St. Michael the Archangel in Overlea on October 20, 1973. Following assignments at St. Dominic, the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, where he was assistant director, and St. Ursula, all in Baltimore, Fr. Ryan was installed as pastor of Holy Family in Davidsonville. During his almost ten years of service there, he led the design and construction of the parish's 500+ seat church and oversaw the creation of many ministries in the newly formed parish. He was later assigned to the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen in Homeland before being named chaplain at the Archbishop Spalding High School in Severn in 2000. Father Ryan left Spalding in 2003 to become a chaplain at the Newman Center at Johns Hopkins University and then, from 2010 to 2016, served as chaplain at Towson University before returning to Archbishop Spalding as a part-time chaplain until his retirement in 2022. Father Ryan was a loving and caring shepherd, known for his kindness, compassion and dedication to his faith, parishioners and students. He was a good listener and always had a word of encouragement or advice. He was also a gifted preacher who could deliver a sermon that was both inspiring and thought-provoking as well as memorable. However, he not only preached the Gospel of the Lord, he lived it; he was a man of great faith and conviction. Father Ryan was always willing to stand up for what he believed in, even when it was unpopular. He was a strong advocate for social justice, working always to make the world a better place. All of this was peppered with a devilish sense of humor and wit, and a deep-seated humility, strengths that immediately put people at ease. Father Ryan was preceded in death by his parents, Jack R. Howard and Gertrude S. Ryan Howard; his siblings, Johanna Hackett, Andrew Boney (the late Carol), Charles Boney, Theresa Stevick (the late Kenneth) and Mary Kay Walker; nephews, Michael Boney, Jimmy Barbarino and Jimmy White; and nieces Tara Dunbar and Kaitlynn Boney. He is survived by 10 nieces and nephews, Maureen Mitchell (late Nat), Robert Boney, Thomas Boney Sr. (Charlene), Denise Kruse (Ed), Nancy Boney, Jill Enterline (Tim), Becky Marapese (late Tony), Ron Barbarino (Heather), Melanie Stevick and Liz Moore (James); 22 great-nieces and nephews and eight great-great nieces. Father Ryan will be deeply missed by his family, friends and former parishioners and students. He was a special man who touched the lives of many. Archbishop William Lori will offer Mass in Fr. Ryan's memory at 10:30AM on Saturday, February 10 at Archbishop Spalding High School, 8080 New Cut Road, Severn, MD 21144. Inurnment will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Father Thomas E. Ryan Endowed Scholarship Fund. Condolences may be made by using the Memories tab on this page.