Nov 1, 2013

OUR LOSS OF A SAINTLY FRIEND: The Rev. Lawrence Rosebaugh, Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, worker amongst the poorest of the poor--murdered in 2009

·The Reverend Lawrence Rosebaugh· ¨served the poorest of the poor¨  (from my blog May 22, 2009)

Prayers for our departed friend
The Rev. Lawrence Rosebaugh, a 74-year-old priest who studied at a seminary in Belleville but spent most of his life living among the poor in Central and South America, was shot to death Monday during a robbery in Guatemala.

"As a priest, he was not the collar type of priest," said his close friend, Sam Hladyshewsky, of Shiloh, who attended the former St. Henry's Preparatory Seminary in Belleville with Rosebaugh during the late 1950s.

"When you looked at him, you'd think he was the poorest of the poor. And those are the ones he served," said Hladyshewsky, a former priest.

The funeral will be today in Guatemala City, according to the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, of which Rosebaugh had long been a member. The international missions group operates the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows in Belleville.

"He lived on the street most of the time because he ministered to the homeless," said the Rev. Allen Maes, an Oblate priest at the shrine.

Rosebaugh, of Milwaukee, was shot multiple times by masked gunmen who stopped a car carrying him and four other missionaries en route to a meeting in Playa Grande, Guatemala. The attackers took about $125, a cellular telephone and religious ornaments. A spokeswoman at the U.S. Embassy in Guatemala City said she could not legally provide any information about Rosebaugh's death.

"Lorenzo's violent and unexpected death has given us another saint," said the Rev. Felix Garcia, a member of Rosebaugh's missionary group in Guatemala. Rosebaugh had served as a missionary for about 10 years in the Central America country.

Rosebaugh, whose late mother, Mildred Rosebaugh, lived for years in the apartment community at the shrine, often returned to the metro-east and was looking forward to retiring here within a few years. He published his autobiography, "To Wisdom Through Failure," in 2006.

In April, Rosebaugh, who signed his letters "Lorenzo," sent e-mails to Hladyshewsky, telling his friend about his work at a Guatemala hospital ministering to AIDS victims and helping street people. He also spoke of working with the sisters of Mother Teresa and of providing a liturgy at a vigil for two boys, ages 13 and 16, murdered by gangs in one of the poorest sections of Guatemala City.

In another recent message, Rosebaugh wrote: "This Holy Week I had three good days of retreat by myself in a great quiet place with beautiful trees and nature, only to view the devastated living conditions of the poorest just across the way. To have that reality so close made for an even better Holy Week for me." read it all, the full story regarding the life of Padre Lorenzo, click HERE

"To Wisdom Through Failure" By Lawrence Rosebaugh, OMI

Larry Rosebaugh is a modern-day St. Francis, and meeting him years ago was a great blessing in my life. His gentle spirit, brave heart and deep love for the poor and oppressed give us hope in today’s struggle for peace and justice. To Wisdom Through Failure is a wonderful book that will inspire, challenge and touch your heart deeply.” — Fr. Roy Bourgeois, MM, School of the Americas Watch

¨This week, we found out that a very dear friend was killed in Guatemala. Fr. Lorenzo has been working in Guatemala ministering to the poor in the hospitals and the children with aids. He was on his way to a meeting on Monday when robbers shot him. Just the Monday before, he was visiting us and telling us of his plans to return to work in St. Louis. He was 74 years old and has led a very humble life style. Fr. Lorenzo has celebrated the Mass with us on special occasions. We have no doubt that he is receiving the true blessings of his holy life, but we will feel the sadness and the loss of a friend.¨ Elizabeth and Tom McCullough

"To Wisdom Through Failure," 2006, by The Reverend Lawrence Rosebaugh, click HERE to find out the details on how to secure a copy of his book  (This post remains the most read and visited entry at Eruptions at the Foot of the Volcano, month after month, year after year)

·Thanks to The Associated Press
·Thanks to George Pawlaczyk, News-Democrat
·Thanks to The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate
·Thanks to Flickr Photosharing

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