Sunday, 14 February 2010 14:48

Obituary - Father Elgar Bockenfeld, OFM

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Aloysius Bockenfeld was born on Sept. 22, 1916, in Quincy, son of Herman and Elizabeth (Koetters) Bockenfeld. He was baptized two days later at St. Francis Solanus Church. He entered the Order of Friars Minor in Sacred Heart Province on Aug. 21, 1937, and was given the name of Elgar. A year and a day later he made his simple profession; he professed solemn vows in Teutopolis on Aug. 22, 1941 and was ordained a priest on June 22, 1944.

Father Elgar served particularly in parochial work. For the first 21 years of ministry he was an assistant pastor in seven different parishes in Missouri, Indiana, Illinois, Nebraska (where he also was an instructor at St. Bonaventure High School in Columbus) and Tennessee.

In 1966 he became the pastor of two small parishes in Minnesota, southwest of the Twin Cities — St. John in Union Hill and St. Benedict in New Prague — and served the two communities for almost 44 years until he was felled by a heart attack in January.

During his nearly four-and-a-half decades in Minnesota, Father Elgar was first a part of St. John the Baptist Friary in Jordan, then a member of the Chaska Friary, and most recently was associated with Sacred Heart Friary in St. Paul.

Father Elgar is survived by a sister, Trudy Stricklin of Quincy, and a number of nieces and nephews. Seven of his brothers and sisters are deceased.

The Mass of Christian Burial was held Jan. 30 at St. Wenceslaus Church in New Prague, Minn. Burial was in St. John Cemetery in Union Hill, Minn.

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