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Remembering Fr. Bernard
He was born on July 31, 1935 to John and Pauline (Dieterle) Finerty, and was baptized 'John Paul Finerty' to reflect both of his parents' names. He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister Mary Patricia Norton. He leaves to mourn his passing his sister, Carol Sherry, and her husband Jack, his brother Gregory and his wife Mary Ann, and many nieces and nephews.
After attending the parish grade school, St. Bernard's in Pittburgh (Mt. Lebanon), PA, he entered St. Fidelis Seminary in Herman, PA. In 1955 he was invested in the habit of the Capuchin Order where he took the name 'Bernard', and in 1956 professed his first vows as a friar. Bernard received a degree in theology in 1962 from Capuchin College in Washington, DC, and was ordained to the priesthood on June 3, 1961, in the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception there.
The new year marks the half-way point for our novices time of discernment through prayer, service and fraternity, and the latest Caperone, their monthly newsletter, is online for your perusal. Brs. Brenton & David write:
Friars descended on Rockville, MD, in Montgomery County on Thursday evening, January 8. Brs. Saúl Soriano, OFM Cap., and Tommy Piolata, OFM Cap., work with the young adult ministry called 270Catholic, no doubt in part referring to Interstate-270 that runs through the county.
The mission of Theology on Tap is to provide young adults an opportunity to explore issues and topics that relate to faith and life in a casual, fun, low-pressure environment. Speakers from a number of churches, universities, and institutions in the DC-area share their thoughts and experiences on a variety of topics to get the conversations started each month -- all the while enjoying a good beer and a burger (although other foods and drinks are also available)!
We called him Bert,
the local crew of confreres,
to bring him back to life for real
after weeks of adulation
and pampering from Christian Mothers
who whispered with reverence
his name in full:
Father Bertin Roll,
the national director
of the Archconfraternity of Christian Mothers.
If Bert were a salesman,
he would have carried
top honors every month.
He recorded 3000 miles in driving
addressing parish women’s groups,
convincing them of the spiritual benefits
of the Christian Mothers Archconfraternity,
the mothers praying for one another,
and always for the children, and often,
determined that prayer and example
would imprint what God was making available.
Our brother, Fr. Bertin Roll, OFM Cap., died on Monday, January 5, 2015 at St. Augustine Friary where he resided for over 62 years. Current Minister, Fr. Phil Fink, OFM Cap., reported that Bertin began hospice care on Saturday, January 3. He had lost strength but was generally in good spirits right to the end. He was 98.
Fr. Bertin was preceded in death by his parents, his sister, Helen, and his brothers, George and Bill, and is survived by several nieces and nephews. Born to William and Nora (O’Brien) Roll on October 5, 1916, he was named Raymond and baptized at St. Athanasius Church in Pittsburgh, PA, where he attended the parish grade school. He chose St. Fidelis High School Seminary to follow his young call to the priesthood and entered the Capuchin Franciscan Order in 1936, taking the Religious name Bertin and professing temporary vows on July 14, 1937, at SS. Peter & Paul Friary in Cumberland, MD. The young friar then studied philosophy with the rest of his class at St. Fidelis Monastery in Victoria, KS, and moved to Capuchin College in Washington, DC, for priesthood studies in 1939. Bertin was ordained on May 28, 1942, in DC's Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.
When someone lives to 98, they leave many a 'footprint' behind. Thanks to Jill Turok at the Christian Mothers' offices and Andria DeVit at the Provincial Office, we've been given the opportunity to share some of those footprints.
In 1994, as Fr. Bert marked 50 years of service to the Christian Mothers, he wrote:
What keeps me going? First of all, one of our stickers that I have on the dashboard of the car: All for the greater honor and glorv of God. I have driven a lot of miles in fifty years. So I thank my present Guardian Angel and those angels that I have worn out (Then, too, I have driven many golf balls. That recreation has helped to keep me sane, sober, single and serene).
Updated on Monday, December 29
We wish all of our readers, especially our closest friends and benefactors, the peace & goodness of the Christmas Season which, for us, actually began on December the 25th - we're in this through the feast of the Baptism of the Lord in January. Meanwhile, we're getting somes shots from our friars, and we wanted to share their special day with you.
Know that the pictures come with our profound prayers of gratitude for your reminder of how faithful the Lord has been to us in 2014. Enjoy the season (even if we won't see any more Christmas commercials -- maybe now we can actually enjoy the Lord's presence in our lives!)