Funeral mass for the Trappist P. Léandre Dosch

Friday, January 14, 2022

By Marie Mischel

Intermountain Catholic

A Christian burial mass for Father Leander Edward Dosch, OCSO was celebrated on January 7th at Villa St. Joseph. The celebrant was Fr. Lourduraj Gally Gregory. The concelebrants were Mgr. Colin Bircumshaw, vicar general; Father Kenneth Vialpando, vicar of the clergy; Mgr. Michael Winterer, a retired priest from the diocese; and Father Patrick Boyle, OCSO.

Among the participants were Fr Leander’s niece and her husband, Gwen and Gill Fagnou; Father Casimir Bernas, OCSO; and many friends who received from him the sacrament of confession, spiritual direction and other ministries, as Fr. Gally noted in his homily.

One of fr. Leander’s greatest virtue was loyalty, Father dit Gally. “His dedication to his religious life and to the OCSO family through his priesthood, which he cherished so much, was an example that we can all learn from. “

Bro. Leander was born on February 1, 1925 on a farm near Annaheim, Saskatchewan, Canada, the first of seven children to the family of Henry and Mary (Meyer) Dosch.

In her eulogy, Gwen Fagnou said she had a special bond with her uncle as he was ordained a priest on June 3, 1950 and she was born a few weeks later. Twenty-one years later, upon his return from missionary work in Brazil, he presided over the wedding of her and her husband.

A few months before her death, she asked him about her vocation to the priesthood, and he sent her a written answer, which she read at the funeral mass. He says there that he was attracted to the priesthood from his childhood. In fourth grade he memorized the Latin answers to mass so he could be a choir servant. After receiving the sacrament of Confirmation, he attended residential school at St. Peter’s Benedictine Abbey in Muenster, Saskatchewan. After high school, he entered the Benedictine novitiate of the abbey; 12 years later he was sent to St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville, Minn.

After his ordination he taught for 10 years at St. Peter’s College and also participated in parish work. In 1960 he became chaplain at a girls’ academy in Bruno, Saskatchewan. Eight years later he traveled to Maceio, Brazil with a missionary team and worked there for three years. He returned to Canada in 1971 and was posted as a hospital chaplain in Humbolt, Saskatchewan.

He repeatedly asked to be transferred to a Trappist monastery, but his abbot refused his requests. Then, in the early 1970s, he completed a month-long retreat at Holy Trinity Abbey in Huntsville, Utah. [now closed]. Subsequently, he again asked his abbot for permission to transfer. This time his request was granted. In August 1975, at the age of 50, he joined Huntsville Abbey, where he served as novice master for 10 years. In addition to writing and publishing several monographs, he was abbot for five years. Then, at age 70, he became archivist of the abbey. At the age of 90, he moved to St. Joseph Villa in Salt Lake City, where he used a Facebook page to evangelize. He died on January 2, 2022, at the age of 96.

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