Linus Verhelst, OFM
1903 – 1964
Fr. Linus Verhelst, OFM, was born in Paterson, N.J., on Dec. 20, 1903. After attending St. Peter’s Prep in Jersey City, he entered the Province’s novitiate at St. Bonaventure Friary in Paterson Aug. 16, 1922.
He professed his temporary vows Aug. 20, 1923, and made his profession of solemn vows Aug. 20, 1926. Fr. Linus was ordained a priest in St. Joseph’s Cathedral in Buffalo, N.Y., on May 25, 1929.
The greatest part of Fr. Linus’ priestly ministry was divided between parish work and preaching on the Mission Band. He ministered in Butler, N.J., Winsted, Conn., and Greenville, S.C., where he founded St. Anthony’s Parish in 1936.
From 1937 to 1943, Fr. Linus was in Greenwood Lake and built St. Cecilia’s Church. From 1949 until 1953, he was again in Greenville and built a convent and school there. His Mission Band work took him to Brookline, Mass., from 1930 to 1934, to Clason Point from 1943 to 1949, and to Winsted from 1953 to 1963. Fr. Linus re-organized the Pius Union of St. Anthony and the Provincial Mass League in 1948 to 1949.
He died in St. Elizabeth Hospital in Brighton, Mass., on June 28, 1964. He was 60 years old, a professed friar for 40 years and a priest for 35 years.