Discalced Carmelite Friars

Province of St. Therese

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In Memoriam

From the Washington Province

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Fr. Kieran Kavanaugh, OCD
Feb. 9, 1928 - Feb. 2, 2019

It is with the greatest confidence in the merciful love of God that we announce the passing of our dear brother, Fr. Kieran Kavanaugh OCD, who was called from this life early this morning. (Feb 2)

Today's feast of the Presentation of the Lord, in which we focus on the gift of consecrated life, is a most fitting and beautiful occasion for his leaving us. It seems that instead of the Lord coming to visit Fr. Kieran as He visited the temple; the Lord decided to bring Fr. Kieran to His own temple. It is also fitting because Fr. Kieran had such great love and devotion for the Infant Jesus.

Funeral arrangements are pending. With that announcement a proper obituary will be given. For now his brothers who mourn our loss ask for your prayers for our beloved brother.


Eternal rest grant unto him O Lord
And let perpetual light shine upon him
May his soul and all the souls of the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen.
Brother Bernard O

Brother Bernard Joseph of Christ Crucified, OCD
May 12, 1940 - September 15, 2018

Brother Bernard Joseph (Nicholas Edward Louis O'Neill) was born in Newcastle, New Brunswick, Canada on May 12, 1940. His parents were Mr. Louis Everett O'Neill and Mrs. Marie Josephine Murdock, both deceased. He was baptized at St. Mary's Church, Newcastle on May 26, 1940. Mr. Nicholas O'Neill decided to join the Discalced Carmelite Friars of the Oklahoma Province of St. Therese and entered the postulancy in1982. He entered the novitiate on July 15, 1982 taking the religious name of Brother Bernard Joseph of Christ Crucified. Brother Bernard made his simple profession on July 16, 1983 and made his solemn profession on July 16, 1988. Brother Bernard Joseph spent 16 years altogether at Marylake Monastery in Little Rock, Arkansas. The last few years, Brother Bernard lived in St. Francis Village in Crowley, TX and St. Joseph's Residence in Dallas, TX where he died on Saturday, September 15, 2018.

Brother Bernard had five sisters: Mrs. Marilyn Gallant, Peggy Boem (deceased), Betsy Smith, Heather Crawford (deceased), and Colleen O'Neill, and five brothers: Robert (deceased), John, Donald, Michael and Patty. Brother Bernard is survived by numerous nephews and nieces.

Fr. Raphael Kitz, OCD - reading

Fr. Raphael Kitz, OCD
December 17, 1930 - June 10, 2018

Fr. Raphael (Richard Andrew) Kitz of St. Joseph, OCD, entered eternal life on Sunday, June 10, 2018. He was born December 17, 1930, in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Fr. Raphael made his first profession of vows as a Discalced Carmelite Friar of the Province of St. Therese on September 30, 1954. He then made his solemn (lifetime) profession of vows on December 8, 1958. He studied theology at the International College of the Discalced Carmelites in Rome, Italy, and was ordained a Catholic priest there on September 19, 1959, in the church of San Marcello.

During his nearly sixty years of priestly, Carmelite life and ministry, Fr. Raphael served in many different capacities—confessor and spiritual director to various communities of Carmelite nuns and Carmelite seculars in the Province, professor at Dominican College in Houston, Texas, and superior and parochial assistant at our houses and parishes in San Antonio and Dallas, Texas. For the past 27 years, Fr. Raphael served at Marylake Monastery, in Little Rock, Arkansas, as novice master, being responsible for the initial formation in Carmelite spirituality of numerous young men pursuing a vocation in the Order of Discalced Carmelites

Fr. Raphael was known also for his ministry to the Carmelite nuns and Carmelite seculars of Little Rock, as well as for his ministry of helping out at Catholic parishes across Arkansas.

Fr. Raphael was preceded in death by his parents, Andrew and Florence (Bergland) Kitz. He is survived by his brother Ronald Kitz, his nephew Darren Kitz, a niece Laura (Kitz) Smith, a great nephew and great niece, Nathan Himley and Leandra Smith, and by his aunt, Telka Jennings.

Fr. Raphael was gifted with exceptional talent as a classical pianist and was deeply learned and widely read in Sacred Scripture and in the writings of St. Teresa of Jesus and St. John of the Cross. He had a great love for animals, especially dogs, and was never without a pet cockatiel. He regularly fed the ducks and geese at Marylake.

His wisdom, kindness, and gentle humor made him beloved by his brothers in religious life and a treasured spiritual guide by those who benefitted from his priestly, Carmelite ministry.

A vigil service will be held in the evening of Thursday, June 14, at Marylake Monastery, Little Rock, AR. The Funeral Mass will be celebrated the next day, Friday, June 15, with burial in our Provincial cemetery on the grounds of Marylake Monastery.

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