The Franciscan Friars of the Renewal have Announced the Death of Rev. Benedict Groeschel, at the age of 81
CALDWELL, NJ - The Franciscan Friars of the Renewal have announced that Father Benedict Groeschel, CFR, died late last night on the vigil of the Feast of St. Francis at the age of 81, after complications with an ongoing illness. Groeschel was a devoted religious and priest who moved many with his sincere faith and passionate preaching and his tender commitment to those in need. In 1987, Groeschel along with seven other Capuchin Friars founded the Community of Franciscan Friars of the Renewal (CFR), in New York City. He was also a well-known writer, preacher, retreat master, and evangelist on EWTN Catholic television.
Early Life and Education
Fr. Groeschel was born in Jersey City as Robert Peter Groeschel. After graduating from high school in 1951, he entered the Capuchin order in Detroit. The following year he was given the name Benedict Joseph after the 18th Century French Franciscan Priest St. Benedict Joseph Labre. The reverend was ordained a priest in 1959.
Groeschel went on to receive his Master's Degree in Counseling from Iona College in 1964 and was awarded his Doctorate of Education in Psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University in 1971.
Groeschel became the director of Trinity Retreat House in Larchmont, NY, serving there as both priest and psychologist. He also taught for many years at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie.
According to members of his order, Groeschel's greatest joy was serving the underprivileged. He established St. Francis House and Good Counsel Home and for 14 years served as the chaplain at Children’s Village in Dobbs Ferry. He is noted as being always deeply concerned with the welfare of others.
Fr. Benedict Groeschel's Family
Fr. Benedict was preceded in death by his brothers Edward and Mark.
He is survived by:
“We are deeply saddened by the death of Fr. Benedict,
The arrangements for Fr. Groeschel's Wake and Funeral Mass are as follows:
Private ceremony not open to the public at Most Blessed Sacrament Friary, Newark
A Facebook memorial page is available online here.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Fr. Groeschel's name to:
Our Lady of the Angels Friary
427 E. 155th Street, Bronx, NY 10455
Donate online here
Br. Angelus Montgomery, CFR, issued the following statement on behalf of the Franciscan Community:
"The Catholic Church and the Franciscan family lost a giant today.