Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Reverend Russel J. Stommel

Rev. Russel J. Stommel passed away at his residence on Tuesday, May 11, 2010, at the age of 69. Father Stommel was born on March 17, 1941, in Racine, Wisconsin. He was ordained on May 20, 1967, by the Most Reverend William E. Cousins at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Milwaukee. Father Stommel entered Saint Francis de Sales Minor Seminary in 1955, and completed preparation for the priesthood at St. Francis de Sales Major Seminary in May 1967.

Father’s priestly ministry began June 21, 1967, as a curate at St. Clement Parish, Sheboygan.  From June 1969 to July 1982, he was appointed associate pastor at several parishes:  Christ King Parish, Wauwatosa, on June 17, 1969; St. Mary Parish, Menomonee Falls, on June 22, 1971; St. John de Nepomuc Parish, Milwaukee, on June 6, 1972; St. Mary Parish, Elm Grove, on December 14, 1973; and St. Leonard Parish, Muskego, on June 17, 1980. 

Father embarked on a study leave on September 1, 1982, attained a Master's of Theology from Marquette University in December 1983 and became a part-time faculty member at the University.  Father returned to pastoral ministry on July 15, 1988 when he was appointed part-time pastor at St. Catherine Parish, Mapleton, followed by an appointment as pastor at St. Gregory the Great Parish, Milwaukee, on June 21, 1994.  Father next served the three parish communities of St. Matthew, Neosho, St. Mary, Woodland, and St. John, Rubicon, appointed temporary administrator on July 29, 1997, and appointed pastor on September 10, 1997.  He was appointed associate pastor at St. Robert, Shorewood, on July 2, 2002, and pastor at St. John Nepomuk, Racine, ,on June 28, 2005.  Father had recently retired from active ministry on June 30, 2009.

Survivors include his mother, Marylu Stommel of Racine; sisters and brother, Rosemary (Roger) Springsteen of Racine, Joseph (Kathy) Stommel of Pueblo, CO, Jean Stommel (Roy Starbeck) of Corvallis, OR; sister-in-law, Nancy King of Racine; close friend, Rev. Paul Lippert of Plainfield, WI; nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews, other relatives and many dear friends.  Father Stommel was preceded in death by his father, Dr. Russel J. Stommel in 1989, and his brother, William F. Stommel in 1982.

A Mass of Christian Burial for Father Stommel will be concelebrated by Bishop Sklba,  Fr. Lippert, and Fr. Ronald Crewe on Sunday, May 16, 2010, at 5 p.m. at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 2201 Northwestern Ave.  Relatives and friends may meet with the family Sunday at the church from 3 p.m. until 4:45 p.m.  Private entombment will be held at Calvary Garden Crypts.  Memorials to the Archdiocese of Milwaukee or a charity of your choice have been suggested.

803 Main St., Racine  (262) 634-7888

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