Jesus Christ, the High Priest, the Lord who is above life and death, has called his faithful servant P. Benedict Pitschmann OSB to himself.

This Benedictine monk from Kremsmünster, and Professor of the Stiftsgymnasium Kremsmünster, passed away on Monday 21 January 2019 at the age of 87.

Leo Pitschmann was born on 24 February 1932 in Mannersdorf am Leithagebirge, Lower Austria, as the first of four brothers, from parents Josef and Margarete Pitschmann. He attended State Gymnasium III in Vienna. From 1946 to 1952, he was a student of the Stiftsgymnasium Kremsmünster, after his family moved to Pettenbach. On 17 August 1952, he entered the cloister and undertook studies in philosophy.  From 1954 to 1958, Benedikt studied theology in Rome.  He made his perpetual profession on 18 August 1956 and was ordained a priest at Kremsmünster on 31 July 1957, along with his four novitiate colleagues.  He celebrated his First Mass on 1 August 1957 in Pettenbach.

From 1958 to 1965, P. Benedikt was a history teacher, and from 1963 also a German teacher in Vienna, where he graduated with his doctorate.  He then taught German in the collegiate grammar school beginning in 1965, and history from 1966 to 1994, including instruction in shorthand from starting in 1978.  He served as Prefect of the boarding school from 1965 to 1972 and was director of the bookstore from 1972 to 1974.

P, Benedict was a faithful worshiper who was always conscientious of his duties, and a humorous confrere who enriched the community with his anecdotes many times at community recreation. His interest in history always has accompanied him. P. Benedikt was in charge of the Abbey Archive from 1978 until 2007 and wrote — in addition to many articles in the annual report of the Gymnasium — the monastic chronicle for decades.  He also was a member of the Institute for Austrian Historical Research and Member of the historical section of the Bavarian Benedictine Academy.

P. Benedikt was very happy to help out on Sundays and holidays for many years in Pettenbach. The market town of Pettenbach honored him in 2005 for his longtime loyalty to the local Christian faithful by awarding him the Silver Badge of Honor.

P, Benedikt spent his old age in poor health and very withdrawn in our hospital ward, where he was looked after prudently. A sincere thanks goes out to all who have supported him over the years through their service. After his condition visibly worsened, longer stays in the hospital ward were necessary, where he finally died on Monday 21 January 2019.  P. Benedict’s favorite Biblical verse was the promise of Jesus at the end of Matthew’s Gospel: “Behold, I am with you always, even unto the end of the age” (Mt 28.20).

The monastery community held a wake for their brother on Monday 28 January 2019 at 7.15 p.m. in the Kremsmünster Abbey church.  His funeral Mass was celebrated on Tuesday 29 January 2019 at 2:00 p.m. in the Kremsmünster Abbey church, with subsequent burial in the monastery cemetery.

For our brother, we kindly ask your prayers and a loving remembrance at Holy Mass.

Abbot and Benedictine monastic community of Kremsmünster, with the Kremsmünster school community and family

Donations in memory of P. Benedikt may be offered to Mission Barreiras (further information indicated in the PDF announcement below).