John was born in 1938 at Bettiah, Bihar. When he lost his parents at a very young age, he was brought up by Mrs. Teresa Raphael. His schooling at K.R., Bettiah, inspired him to join the Jesuits in 1962. He did philosophy in Pune and theology in Kurseong and Delhi. He was ordained in 1974 and took final vows in 1979. John served chiefly at Prabhat Prakashan in Patna as administrator, editor and writer, and in K.R. School, Bettiah, as teacher and counsellor before retiring to XTTI in 2015.
John was rooted in prayer right from his childhood. He lived his priestly life to the full ever remaining closely attached to our Lady of the Rosary. In Latonah, where he was pastor, he is still remembered for his piety. He was a man of dignity, never crossing the parameters of his religious values. He lived a simple life and worked silently with total dedication. He was not attached to people or things. Discipline is a value he treasured and adhered to with passion. His hearty laughter and childlike demeanour are most likable. He had a heart for the poor; when helpless, he pleaded with the others to help the needy.
He was an educator, administrator, and a noble scholar. As Director of Prabhat Prakashan he took it to new heights. He was knowledgeable, intelligent, and reflective. He edited the ‘Sandesh’ magazine, wrote many books, upgraded moral science books, etc. He was a commendable preacher and retreat director.
John went on his regular walks at Xavier Bhawan. It kept him healthy even when his mind failed him. Progressive dementia got the better of him and from November 21 he was confined to his room, and later to his bed. Whether in good health or when ill John hardly complained. At 2.50 am on November 28 he went to his eternal reward.
- Vincent Francis, SJ