In Memory Of ...

In Memory of Rev. Raymond W. Wawiorka

Rev. Raymond W. Wawiorka

June 12, 1930 - October 28, 2011

Service:

Funeral services for Father Ray will be held on Friday, November 4, 2011. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 7:00 PM at St. Elizabeth Catholic Church, 4816 7th Ave., Kenosha, WI 53140. Private interment will follow. A visitation will be held on Friday from 4:30 PM until the time of the Mass.

Visitation:

A visitation will be held on Friday from 4:30 PM until the time of the Mass.

Memorial:

Memorial remembrances may be directed to Franciscan Missions, P.O. Box 130, Waterford, WI 53185 or St. Elizabeth Catholic Church.

Obituary:

Rev. Raymond W. Wawiorka served God and his flock for 55 years. He was called Home by His Heavenly Father at 1:30 PM on Friday, October 28, 2011, at St. Joseph Home & Rehabilitation Center. After battling a long illness, he answered the Lord's call to finally take his rest, with his family at his side in prayer.

He has gone to join his parents, Bernice (Michniewicz) and Peter Wawiorka; and his brothers, Joseph, Edward and Andrew; and sisters-in-law, Marie and Lorraine. To carry on his memory here on Earth are his beloved brother, Chet Wawiorka and his dear sister, Jeannette (Dr. Martin) Setter; as well as seven nieces, four nephews and many great and great-great-grandnieces and nephews who had benefitted from his guidance.

Father Ray was born June 12, 1930 in Kenosha, WI. His family parish and grade school was St. Casimir in Kenosha. He graduated from St. Bonaventure High School in Sturtevant. He attended and matriculated from St. Francis Minor and Major Seminary in Milwaukee. Further education included The Aquinas Institute in Dubuque, IA, where he earned a Master of Divinity degree, St. Luke Hospital in Milwaukee where he earned a certification in Clinical Pastoral Education, and additional studies in management and behavior sciences at Marquette University and Loyola University. He earned certification in health care by the United States Catholic Conference as Chaplain General Health Care, Acting Chaplain Supervisor and Chaplain Supervisor.

 

For twenty-seven years, he served in dedication to health care ministry, where he would say he performed "spiritual surgery" by aiding the sick and infirmed as a hospital chaplain. His appointments included a ministry as the first, full-time Catholic chaplain at St. Luke Medical Center, Milwaukee from 1966-1970; Director of Chaplain Services at St. Francis Hospital, Milwaukee from 1970 - 1979; Archdiocesan Coordinator of Health Affairs from 1972-1979; Chaplain at St. Joseph Hospital in Tucson, AZ; Chaplain at St. Joseph Hospital in Ashville, NC; Staff Chaplain at Bay Pines V.A. Medical Center in Florida; and Associate Director of Pastoral Care at St. Anthony Hospital, Ft. Petersburg, FL from 1983 - 1993.


He was appointed to the U.S.C.C.B. Advisory Committee on Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Facilities in 1972 and served until 1979. He was on the National Associaton of Catholic Chaplains Executive Committee from 1976-1980 and served as Chaplain to the Archdiocesan Catholic Physician's Guild. In addition, he coordinated the two week Institute for Chaplains and Pastoral Associates for the National Association of Catholic Chaplains, evaluated clinical pastoral training centers from 1974-1984 and taught clinical pastoral education for 20 years. Among his many professional associations were the National Association of Catholic Chaplains, National Conference of Diocesan Coordinators, Wisconsin Association of Catholic Chaplains (president 1971-1978) and United States Catholic Conference.

He was honored to work with military veterans and used his extensive knowledge of Polish to translate and say Mass and hear confessions in Polish. He spoke to Polish Americans on the Solidarity Movement during Poland's turbulent 1970's.

In retirement, he volunteered his services at Light of Christ Parish in Clearwater, FL and helped Father Roman Stikel at St. Elizabeth Parish in Kenosha. He kept busy conducting Missions at various parishes and visiting nursing home and assisted living residents.

He celebrated his 50th Jubilee Mass at St. Elizabeth Parish.

He enjoyed travelling and mentoring his nieces and nephews. He loved to follow the lives and careers of his family and officiated at innumerable baptisms, weddings and funerals for family and friends. He kept in contact with his many former classmates, fellow ministers, religious, medical and laity friends, especially his life long friend, Bishop Ralph Fliss. He loved fishing for northern pike and a good game of golf with friends. At home, he enjoyed reading, music and cooking. He loved a long conversation with friends over a good meal and listening to family stories over a holiday table. Never quite abandoning his childhood memories, Father Ray relished decorating his home and the church at Christmas. His last adventures were travelling to Poland twice to visit the cathedrals, experience the culture and research family history at the family home parish in Barglow-Koscielny.

His audience with Pope John Paul II at the Vatican and celebrating Mass at Jasna Gora were some of his proudest moments.

Funeral services for Father Ray will be held on Friday, November 4, 2011. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 7:00 PM at St. Elizabeth Catholic Church, 4816 7th Ave., Kenosha, WI 53140. Private interment will follow. A visitation will be held on Friday at the church from 4:30 PM until the time of the Mass.

Memorial remembrances may be directed to Franciscan Missions, P.O. Box 130, Waterford, WI 53185 or St. Elizabeth Catholic Church.

Father Ray often asked for council from The Holy Spirit and his devotion to the Blessed Virgin helped guide him in his ministry here on Earth. Prayers for him would be a welcome tribute as he makes his transition to his new home.


"Forever I will sing the Mercies of the Lord."

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Condolences

Posted on: July 08, 2013 | By: Adailson

Thanks, Paula. I saw a comment or two on YouTube redgiarng the Applause spot, basically saying that they just wished people would actually do that (applaud). Well, I've seen it happen: I was part of an airport homecoming for a kid I know who returned from a tour of duty in Iraq, and it was quite a moving experience. A lot of people who didn't know him joined in. I have a lot of respect for those who volunteer to serve, wherever they get sent. Good people can also disagree about whether we should be there.


Posted on: November 04, 2011 | By: Catherine Setter

We will miss u Uncle Ray.  May you RIP.


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