Father John Gary Schexnayder

Born July 28, 1942


In Father Gary's congregation, you learn to wear a Smiley Face, too.  When you attend Sunday Mass, you will probably be greeted by someone wearing one and just to remind you, you will receive a smiley face for your lapel.  Father's vestments frequently are embroidered with a smiley face.  It has become his unofficial "logo."
Born in Arnaudville on July 28, 1942, to  Yves and Florence Guidry Schexnayder, John Gary  obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Sacred Theology from Catholic University in May 1967.  After a summer internship at Our Lady of Help of Christians,  Jennings, Louisiana, under Monsignor Charles Marin, he attended Catholic University in Washington, D.C.  He was ordained a priest on June 7, 1969 at Saint John Francis Regis Catholic Church in Arnaudville by Bishop Warren Boudreaux.

Perhaps because he was a student at Little Flower School, Father Gary eagerly explains to his parishioners:  “Since the third grade, I have had an interest in the priesthood. After all these years, I have tried to keep my focus and be the best representative of the Gospel that I can possibly be.  I became a priest to serve God and to serve you.”  

And, his parishioners feel he has been very successful. His homilies are interspersed with a few French words but his message in always on track!
Some of the Parishes where he has served:

Saint Edmonds, Lafayette

Saint Michael Church, Crowley, 2002

Saint Elizabeth Seton, Lafayette, 2012
Watch a Father Gary Video by clicking the smiley face!
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