Holy Cross Father Henry Andrew Stocks

Fr. Stocks was chaplain to Toronto's deaf community

  • January 24, 2013

TORONTO - Holy Cross Father Henry Andrew Stocks spoke loud and clear in a language you can’t hear and touched the hearts of deaf Catholics from Bangalore to Toronto.

For five years the chaplain of the Toronto Catholic deaf community, and almost 40 years a Holy Cross missionary in India, Fr. Stocks lost a long battle with cancer Jan. 19. He was 77.

“He was a wonderful guy,” recalled Carol Stokes, the archdiocese of Toronto’s co-ordinator of deaf ministry. “He did a lot of work with the schools. He was very involved with the deaf kids at the schools and they loved him.”

A founder of the Asian section of the Catholic Foundation for Deaf Services, he was very involved in organizing conferences on Catholic deaf ministry in Rome.

Fr. Stocks began his priestly life in 1965 assigned to the Holy Cross mission in Bangalore, India. Over time he developed an interest in the deaf community and built training centres for the deaf in Bangalore and Karwar.

After returning to Canada in 2005 to attend to his health, Fr. Stocks remained connected to the Indian community.

“His knowledge of the different dialects that they speak in India, it’s phenomenal,” said Stokes. “He met anybody from India he could basically talk with them.”

Stocks’ funeral was scheduled for 10 a.m. Jan. 22 at St. Kevin’s parish in Welland, Ont. He was to be buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Welland.


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