The Saint Ignatius High School community mourns the loss of Rev. Bernard Streicher, S.J., a longtime Saint Ignatius High School English faculty member. Fr. Streicher passed away August 17, 2017, at the age of 88.
Rev. Bernard Streicher, S.J. was born in 1928 and raised in Gesu Parish in Toledo, Ohio. He was immersed in a world of Jesuits from an early age. His father had attended St. John’s Jesuit High School and College, and remained close friends with many of the priests. When St. John’s closed after the Great Depression, his father sent him to board at the Jesuit Campion High School in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin. It was there that Fr. Streicher decided to join the Jesuits, thinking, “Why wouldn’t I want to help in advancing God’s plan? It was more of a logical decision than an emotional one.”
While at Milford Seminary, he earned a degree in literature from Xavier University and during his regency period of formation began teaching at the University of Detroit Jesuit High School.
Fr. Streicher taught at Saint Ignatius beginning in the early 1960s, then left in the early ‘70s to teach English at Toledo St. John’s High School. In 1981 he returned to Saint Ignatius, where he remained through the 2014-2015 school year. After his retirement from teaching, Fr. Streicher resided at Colombiere Retreat & Conference Center in Clarkston, Michigan.
Although he taught all aspects and levels of high school English, Fr. Streicher was best known for authoring grammar textbooks. A beloved teacher and grammarian, he taught Saint Ignatius freshmen from his own book, Correct Writing, known fondly by many as the “Brown Bomber.” He also co-authored The Writing Handbook, published by Loyola Press.
"Bernie cherished his relationships," Assistant Principal for Faculty Formation Tom Beach says. "We mattered to him. Many will remember him for his impressive work with grammar; that is as it should be. However, I will remember him more for his kindness and his willingness to always meet me where I was."
For his many years of teaching and service to students, Fr. Streicher was honored with the Magis Award, the school’s highest honor, along with Fr. Frank Canfield, S.J. at the 2015 Saint Ignatius Christmas Concert.
Fr. Streicher’s legacy continues to echo in the halls of Saint Ignatius (in a Writing Lab named in his honor) and in the lives of former students, friends, and his fellow Jesuits.