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Deacon Vincent A. Abrahams

2021-04-08


Deacon Vincent Abrahams - A Life of Love and Service

Deacon Vincent, 85, passed away April 8, 2021, in Jacksonville. Vincent grew up in Queens, New York, raised by devout parents and grandparents in Presentation of the BVM Church. Vin attended Bishop Loughlin High School and Queens College, Fordham University, and NYU where he received his B.A., M.A., and supervisory certificates, respectively. He professed in the Third Order of St. Francis while studying at St. Joseph's Seraphic Seminary, Callicoon, New York, in the 1950s. Vincent served in the United States Army Reserves in the 1960s.

Vincent and his wife, Valentina, raised their family of three children in Smithtown, New York. Vincent and his wife cherished their participation in several spiritual groups: Teams of Our Lady, Small Christian Communities, Cursillo Movement, and Handicap Encounter Christ. They also enjoyed their time at Woodloch Resort in the Poconos. Vincent arranged an annual week for busloads of family and friends for over 15 years. A priest was always invited so daily Mass was assured!

For thirty-three years Vincent taught public high school both in the City of New York and Commack, Long Island. While at Commack High School, he coached track and field and cross country for twenty-five years. Thereafter, Vincent became a track official for twelve years. An active runner, he was still running marathons at age 65, alongside his beloved Long Island River Rats community.

After retiring in 1994, Vincent went on to complete his lay and diaconate studies and was ordained a permanent deacon to the diocese of Rockville Center in 1999. He served at St. Patrick Church, Smithtown, New York. After the death of his wife, Vincent moved to Florida in 2007, where he served at St. Patrick Church in Jacksonville and St. Francis of Assisi Mission Church in Yulee. He was a contemplative in action -- praying, preaching, forming others in the faith, and caring for the sick and homebound.

An avid fisherman, Vincent felt at home on and near the water from an early age. Vincent’s love of a good laugh and sunny smile helped bring levity wherever he went. “Life is too important to take seriously” and “You’re doing a great job!” were two statements frequently on his lips.

Deacon Vincent is survived by his children, Elizabeth (Alan) Kuhn, John, and Dorothy (Derek Stewart), grandchildren Kateri and Maria Kuhn, sister Marian Licameli, sister-in-law Elizabeth Flynn, brother-in-law and sister-in-law John and Diane Flynn, nieces and nephews, cousins, as well as the seeds he planted in the hearts of all who knew him. He is predeceased by his wife Valentina, parents John and Dorothy, brother Fr. Pius (John), and sister Pat Healy.

Visitation on Thursday, April 15th at Oxley-Heard Funeral Home in Fernandina Beach, 5:30 to 7:30 pm, with Vigil at 6:30 pm. Funeral Mass on Friday, April 16th at 11:00 am at St. Francis of Assisi Mission Church in Yulee. In lieu of flowers, memorials to the St. Vincent de Paul Society (chapter of your choosing) or Mayo Clinic appreciated.

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