Brother Anthony Kowalczyk, O.M.I., recognized for his heroic virtues

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Antoine-KowalczykAnthony Kowalczyk (1866-1947), a lay brother of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate who served in Western Canada, has been recognized by the Church for his heroic virtues. Brother Anthony was born in Dzierzanow, Poland, on June 4, 1866; he came to Canada in 1896, and died in Edmonton on July 10, 1947. Trained in Germany as a blacksmith, he lost an arm because of an accident in a mission sawmill at Lac-la-Biche. Popularly known as “God’s blacksmith,” he later worked with Indians and Metis in Alberta, and then spent most of his life as the custodian at St. John’s College in Edmonton, 1911-1947, where he spent his final years as gardener and handy man. Venerable Brother Anthony is buried in St. Albert, not far from downtown Edmonton. The decree recognizing his heroic virtues was authorized by Pope Francis. His cause was first introduced in the Archdiocese of Edmonton in 1952, and has been under study by the Holy See since 1979.  

Biography of Brother Anthony