Ferdinand Heckmann, OFM
1879 – 1957
Fr. Ferdinand Heckmann, OFM, was born on June 6, 1879 in Guetersloh, Germany. He came to America in 1894 and attended St. Francis Solanus College in Quincy, Ill., until 1898. He was received into the novitiate at St. Bonaventure Friary, Paterson, N.J., that year and professed temporary vows in 1899. He made his solemn profession in 1902 and was ordained in 1906.
His first assignment was as lector at Mount St. Sepulchre in Washington, where he remained for four years. In 1911, he was assigned to St. Joseph’s Seraphic Seminary, Callicoon, N.Y., and in 1912, he went to teach at St. Stephen’s Friary, Croghan, N.Y., for three years, where he also cared for outlying missions. Fr. Ferdinand also served at parishes in Butler, Garfield and Paterson, N.J., and Buffalo, N.Y. Twice he ministered as chaplain, once at St. Michael’s Home in Tamaqua, Pa., and again at St. Francis Hospital, the Bronx, N.Y.
In 1934, Fr. Ferdinand was assigned to Holy Name College, Washington, where he wrote articles for the Catholic Encyclopedia and monthly sermons for The Homiletic and Pastoral Review. In 1946, he went to Holy Cross Friary in the Bronx, N.Y.
He died on Dec. 29, 1957 at St. Anthony’s Hospital in Warwick, N.Y. Fr. Ferdinand was 77 years old, a professed friar for 57 years and a priest for 50 years.