Saturday, 19 September 2009

Rev. Fr Jules De Ryck, C.SS.R. (1880 - 1955)

Father was born at Herzele, Flanders, on 18 December, 1880 and was admitted to profession at Saint-Trondon on 29 September, 1903. He was ordained a priest at Beauplateau on 29 September, 1909.

He died at Louvain on 4 January, 1955.

Father De Ryck's mortuary card is inscribed with a beautiful and rather unusual inscription. It reads:

"Lord Jesus, Father De Ryck will always stand before us as a bearer of the Cross, bent low beneath a heavy weight. Such had sickness made him in his last 25 years. Still he continued to work diligently and with the best results. Bent over, he mounted the Altar for the Daily Sacrifice; with great disability, but still so beautifully, he preached his familiar sermons about the Blessed Virgin and her intercession; bent over and disabled he entered the confessional and the homes of the sick to forgive sins and comfort the suffering.

"For the last three years of his life he was completely lame and tried with blindness. Still he continued to pray, to offer and to fight against inactivity.

"Now that he is dead, Lord Jesus, and many will mourn him, we contemplate Thy meeting with woman in the Gospel, who for 18 years had gone about bent down, unable to lift herself up. Thou didst lay Thy hands upon her and instantly she was healed and gave praise to God. We ask of Thee, lay too Thy hands upon Thy servant, loose his soul of suffering, of sin and guilt - lift up his soul, Thou in Whom he hoped. My he behold Thee aright, O God Eternal, and find joy."

Lord, be gracious unto me! (The prayer of his last hours.)

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