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Fr. William Wiethorn, 1940-2014

Date of Birth: June 30, 1940
Place of Birth:  Pittsburgh, PA
Investiture:  July 13, 1960
Temporary Profession:  July 14, 1961
Perpetual Profession:  July 14, 1964
Ordination:  October 22, 1966
Date of death:  October 8, 2014
Burial:  St. Augustine Cemetery, Millvale, PA

 “Not being elected Provincial Minister
was a blessing:as a priest,
as a person and as a Religious . . .
It’s the best thing that
ever happened to me.” (March 1989)

       Who’s smiling now?

       Our brother Bill Wiethorn was a “people person”. That moniker is an undeniable description of the man and friar that, seemingly, everyone knew and loved. Bill loved being ‘in touch’ -- whether he was asking a friar to accompany him on a visit to another friary or whether he was picking up a receiver to call and ask “How ya’ doin’?”  It became commonplace to say of this internationally known Capuchin that he “can smile in all languages,” despite his difficulties in coming up with actual words in the languages he tried to master.

       A smile was an important communicator for a guy who didn’t have a facility for languages. After living in Rome for four years, he would still ask “What’s ‘pomodoro’ mean?” on a menu, even though a ‘tomato,’ its translation, is not a rare sight in Italy. After taking classes in Mexico for months, he still admitted he just couldn’t really say much more than “Como estás?” He needed that smile to show people he cared about them, and they knew he did.


Br. Michael Letostak, 1952-2014


Date of Birth: May 9, 1952
Place of Birth: Enid, OK
Investiture: July 21, 1984
Temporary Profession: July 13, 1985
Perpetual Profession: July 29, 1989
Date of death: September 9, 2014
Burial: St. Augustine Cemetery, Millvale, PA
“I don’t know. Why do you think
I’d do something like that?”

       Mike Letostak loved Bob Dylan. He claimed to possess every one of the folk singer’s recordings on CD -- he saw him in concert at least 10 times or more. One friar learned that he was typing out the lyrics to all of Bob Dylan’s song canon. “Why would someone do something like that?” asked the friar. Michael replied with the citation above without blinking an eye.

       The word ‘radical’ would hardly come to mind when one remembers Br. Michael Letostak, but at the same time, you always knew there was a current beneath him which ran deeper than he would let his understated exterior display.


Fr. Edward Laurent, 1931-2014

Date of birth:  July 14, 1931 
Place of Birth:   Pittsburgh, PA
Investiture:   July 13, 1957
Temporary Profession:   July 14, 1958
Perpetual Profession:  July 14, 1961
Ordination:   February 8, 1964
Date of death:   July 15, 2014
Burial:  St. Augustine Cemetery, Millvale, PA
“I want to thank you for
your generous service for the Province.

We would be in very serious straights
without your generous service.”
Fr. Francis Fugini, OFM Cap., March 23, 1987

       So often in the life of a friar, his rich and varied gifts can go unnoticed and under-appreciated by his confreres, simply because our achievements and exemplary performance are “commonplace.” Within a collection of gifted men, one blends in precisely by being talented and dedicated. Along the way, we can miss personal details that are unique and speak the personal story of ups and downs, of the failures behind the successes and of the energies expended to make things happen.


Francisco García Cervera, 1947-2014


       Our brother, Fr. Francisco García Cervera, OFM Cap., former Custos (Minister) to our friars of the custody of St. John the Baptist, Puerto Rico, died suddenly on February 27, 2014, in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico.

Friar Francisco was born in Cuba on June 11, 1947. He was baptized on his first feast day, October 4, the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, founder and patron of the Order to which he would later belong.




Capuchin Friars  ♦  Province of St. Augustine  ♦  220—37th Street  ♦  Pittsburgh, PA 15201  ♦  (412) 682-6011