Joseph Vondracek 

*7 Mar 1894 - †23 Jul 1943


a) Was ordained to the priesthood 12/21/1918.

Baptized Rita Vondrachek Vincent and Mary Vondrachek Egan

Was at St. Mary's in Reedsville, WI 1/21/1932-11/1/1934

The Most Rev. Paul P. Rhode, bishop of the Green Bay diocese, will be celebrant of the solemn pontifical requiem high mass for the late Rev. Joseph Vondracek at the Holy Rosary Catholic church at Kewaunee Tuesday morning at 10 o'clock.
Other officers of the mass are the Rt. Rev. Msgr. Joseph A. Marx, V.G. presbyter assistant, Rev. E. A. Radey of Manitowoc, preacher, Rev. Frank Svatek, deacon, Rev. Frank C. Heimann, sub-deacon, the Revs. John Huhn and Emil Shimek, honorary deacons, Rev. Cyril Kabat, master of ceremonies, Rev. Rudolph Hodik, thurifer, the Revs. Rudolph Kerch and Patrick McMahon, acolytes, and the Rt. Rev. William Kraemer, absolution.
The office of the dead will be recited at 9:30 with the Rev. Martin Vosbeek leading. The Very Rev. John Rous will lead the devotions at the cemetery at Casco where the body will be buried.
The clergy choir will sing the requiem mass. Tonight at 7:30 the Rosary society of the Holy Rosary church will recite the rosary, and at 8:30 members of the Foresters court and parishioners of the Stangelville church will meet to recite the rosary.
On Tuesday morning at 7 o'clock a mass will be read for parishioners, and at 8 a.m. the Rev. Frank Svatek, nephew of the deceased, will read mass for the children of the parish.

Sermon preached at Rev. Joe's Funeral:
"We will not have you ignorant concerning them that are asleep that you be not sorrowful, even as others who have no hope." Words taken from the epistle of the mass which is being read this morning.
Only three years ago we gathered here in this church to witness the funeral of Father Kubale. Today we are here to pay our last tribute to Father Vondracek.
The death of both Fathers had something in common. Both for many years had a physical ailment but in their great zeal for Jesus Christ they continued until they had reached their goal.
Those of us who knew Father Vondracek know that he had a smile for us all. Like the saints of old who faced death with a smile, so also our Father Vondracek has left us with a smile. even the undertaker could not erase the smile from Father Vondracek's face.
The severe ailment had caused him much pain, but in spite of all the pain he was faithful to his duty. Many a time he had to leave his instruction class for a few minutes, but always returned to complete his work. "He that shall lose his life for My sake shall find it." This was Father Vondracek's ideal. Like the martyrs of old who could see the figure of their Master Jesus Christ ever before them, so also our martyr of death today, only a few days ago left home and realized the seriousness of his ailment, but like a good Captain, he determined to fight the battle to the end. The blow came. A trumpet was sounded, but no taps. There is no longer a chance for him to fight in the battle. He has reached his goal and is now marching on to his glory.
In the church we celebrate the feasts of the saints not on the day of their birth, but on the day of their death. We today are actually celebrating a double celebration. This year Father Vondracek has completed his twenty-five years in the holy priesthood. It is his jubilee year.
Not so very long ago Father Vondracek said, "I am not going to celebrate my jubilee in an unusual way. I am going to take a little trip." Last Friday Rev. Vondracek called for the chaplin at the hospital to aid him on his last journey. Father Vondracek followed the prayers of the chaplin, took the crucifix, clasped it in his hands and kissed it several times. He held it up, looked at the Savior, then he relaxed and said a few beautiful and simple words. They were "Thank You".
I know that if Father Vondracek could speak to us today he would say, Thank you, your Excellency, for accepting me into the diocese. Thank you for the honor of selecting me as one of your advisors. Thank you for celebrating this holy sacrifice of the mass for me.
Thank you Monseignor Marx for you inspired me to the priesthood. You helped me in all my difficulties.
Thank you Father Kolor. You always called me your little boy. I was glad to be your little boy.
Thank you Father Svatek because you have followed your uncle in the priestly vocation.
Thank you Reverend Fathers for being present here today. I know that you will say the three masses for me which we are obliged to say for our departed priestsThank you my brothers and sisters for all the sacrifices you have made for me. Thank you for all your kindness. Thank you my brother Foresters. Thank you my friends. Thank you officers and people of Holy Rosary Congregation for your cooperation. Thank you all my parishioners of Norman, Francis Creek, Casco, Reedsville, and Stangelville.
Thank you, thank you one and all.
It was the request of Rev. Vondracek that no sermon be preached at his funeral. I am here today speaking against his wishes, but I am doing it in obedience to our Right Rev. Bishop and in his stead.
Only a few more minutes remain and Father Vondracek will be laid to rest in his pleasant dormatory among his friends. Let us not forget him in our prayers.
Father Vondracek indicated in his will that his funeral was to be very simple. That the monument to be raised above his grave was to be very simple, too. He also left money for masses to be said for him for he realized that once he was laid to rest he would be forgotten by many.
The journey through the fire of purgatory moves very slowly. Therefore let us remember him in our prayers.
In conclusion let me express my sentiments in these words. "May the angels lead thee into paradise, may the martyrs receive thee at thy coming and lead thee into the holy city. May the choir of angels receive thee and mayst thou have eternal rest." Amen.

  • 7 Mar 1894