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Father Francis Joseph (“Joe”) Laishley SJ.

Joe died at about 6.15pm on Wednesday 1st July 2015 in the University College Hospital in London. He had been admitted there after a chest infection had led to heart failure. He would have celebrated his 82nd birthday on July 2nd 2015.

Joe was born in Portsmouth and attended SFX as a pupil for a few years in the war years and later Portsmouth Grammar School. He entered the novitiate in Harlaxton in 1951 at the age of 18. In between studying philosophy and theology at Heythrop in Oxfordshire, he studied for a teaching certificate in Roehampton and an MA in Classical Mods and Greats at Campion Hall. He returned to teach at SFX Liverpool as a scholastic in 1962-63.

Joe was ordained on 30th July 1966, made his tertianship in St Beuno’s under Paul Kennedy and then undertook doctoral studies in dogmatic theology at the Gregorian College in Rome. He taught systematic and sacramental theology at Heythrop in London for more than 25 years. He progressed to be Professor of Theology. There is now a Laishley lecture room at Heythrop College, University of London. During this period he lived at Southwell House, in the Heythrop community at Cavendish Square, and, from 1993 until his death, in Mount Street. Joe retired from full-time teaching after a heart attack in 1999, but continued as a part-time tutor and writer.

In his latter years he was a familiar face in Hyde Park observing the wild life and appeared in good health despite being over 80 years of age.