Father Robert Lee Jones unexpectedly fell asleep in the Lord on Wednesday, May 11. He was the administrator of both St. Mary Church in Weirton, W. Va. and St. John Church in Avella, Pa.
He was born on April 4, 1956 in Jacksonville, N.C., the son of the late Robert Lee and Joyce Rita Coventry Jones.
Father Robert earned a degree in journalism from East Carolina University; a Master’s degree in creative writing from East Washington State University in Spokane, Washington; a Master’s Degree in Religious Education from Felician University of New Jersey; and Master of Divinity degree from SS. Cyril and Methodius Seminary in Pittsburgh.
He was ordained to the Presbyterate by Archbishop William C. Skurla in the seminary chapel on Aug. 26, 2021 during the opening Divine Liturgy for that academic year.
He is survived by his wife of 28 years, Elizabeth Rapier Jones, his brother Michael, his sisters Marie and Therese, and other extended family.
Friends were received at St. John Church, Avella on the afternoon and evening of Monday, May 16.
The Priestly Parastas was celebrated that evening by Very Reverend Andrew J. Deskevich with Archbishop William C. Skurla presiding. Concelebrants were Very Reverends R. Joseph Raptosh and Robert M. Pipta and Reverend Fathers Stephen J. Wahal, Paul V. West, Miron Kerul’-Kmec and Michael D. Kunitz.
Reverend Fathers Valerian M. Michlik and Will Rupp with Sub-Deacon Kyprian Wojciechowski served as cantors.
Archbishop William celebrated the funeral Divine Liturgy on Tuesday morning, May 17. Concelebrants were Very Reverends R. Joseph Raptosh and Robert M. Pipta, and Reverend Fathers Valerian M. Michlik, Paul V. West, Miron Kerul’-Kmec and Michael D. Kunitz. Deacons Nathanael Kline and Lance Weakland served as Deacons. The Master of Ceremonies was Very Reverend Andrew J. Deskevich, and Reverend Father Paul V. West was the homilist. Reverend Father Will Rupp and Sub-Deacon Kyprian Wojciechowski cantored.
In attendance were Very Reverends James A. Spontak, Frank A. Firko, and Vasyl Polyak, and Reverend Fathers Kevin E. Marks, Ivan Rusyn, Joel Barstad and Stephen J. Wahal.
Interment followed in the St. John parish cemetery in Avella.
In blessed repose, grant O Lord eternal rest to your departed servant the priest Robert and remember him forever! n