Bro. Christian Neetz, T.O.R.
Immaculate Conception Province, USA
The faithful observance of the evangelical counsels has a special witness value in our time which gives testimony that this world is not a lasting home. Therefore as pilgrims and strangers, the friars seek only Christ and the establishment of his reign.
In imitation of Saint Francis, let the friars accept death joyfully as the last offering of their lives and as the passageway to the glory of God. The celebration of death should give clear witness to the faith and hope they place in the resurrection of Jesus. As a sign of fraternal union, deceased friars, relatives, friends and benefactors are remembered with gratitude in accord with the proper law.
Brother Christian Rudolph Neetz, T.O.R., age 64, died on October 12, 2002 at Kindred Hospital in Tampa, FL. Brother Christian was the son of Rudolph Carl and Catherine Krupa Neetz. He was born in Brooklyn, NY, August 28, 1938.
He was predeceased by his parents and brother, Carl. He is survived by his Franciscan Community, his sister-in-law, Grace Neetz, and nephew, Charles Neetz married to the former Lu Langston and grandnieces, Kara and Kati, in Florida and a cousin, Anna Barca of Staten Island, NY.
He entered the Franciscan Community in Hollidaysburg, PA on September 8, 1953, and professed his temporary vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience on July 17, 1957. On July 3, 1961, he made his profession of solemn vows.
Brother Christian served the community as tailor, sacristan, kitchen manager and cook at St. Bernardine Monastery from 1957 - 1960 and at the Franciscan Preparatory Seminary from 1960 - 1963. From 1963 -1968, he continued his ministry at St. Thomas More House of Studies, Washington, D.C. Brother Christian served as dorm prefect, study hall proctor, Assistant P.T.A. Director and Director of the Booster Club from September 1968 to June 1970 at James Barry-Robinson School for Boys in Norfolk, VA. Brother Christian attended Northern Virginia Community College Culinary School while living at the Provincialate in Silver Spring, MD. In 1972 he was the Assistant Manager of Cleaves Food Branches while serving as Manager of St. Thomas More House of Studies Kitchen in Washington, DC. In 1978 he returned to St. Bernardine Monastery to serve as the cook and kitchen manager. In March of 1981 he was appointed Chaplain of the Southern Allegheny Chefs' Association.
He continued his program in Clinical Pastoral Education in Washington, DC. In 1989 Brother Christian was appointed as Chaplain of St. Elizabeth Hospital in Youngstown, OH and served as Local Minister at St. Francis Friary in Warren, OH. In 1992 Brother served as Catholic Chaplain at South Side Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA. In 1994 Brother Christian was assigned to San Damiano Friary in Wilmington, DE. He was named Assistant Director of Joseph House in Wilmington, DE where he worked in the Ministry of Caring. He then returned to St. Bernardine Monastery before being assigned to St. Lawrence Parish in Bushnell, FL where he worked in the parish thrift shop. In July 2002 Brother was assigned to San Pedro Spiritual Life Center in Winter Park, FL.
Christian was loved by many for his deep compassion, understanding heart, great generosity and listening ear. His sumptuous meals enriched many community celebrations over the years and enhanced the storehouse of memories and stories in the Immaculate Conception Province. Christian provided in his ministry and in his person an environment where friars, families and friends found welcome and fellowship. While grateful that he has been released from his pain, he will be missed.
Friends may called at St. Bernardine Monastery on Tuesday, October 22, 2002 at 10:00 a.m. prior to the Funeral Mass at 11:00 a.m. Inurnment was at the Community Cemetery at Kladder Station.
Fr. Anthony Criscitelli, T.O.R.
Bro. David Liedl, T.O.R.