Deacon Paul Kieffer, 80, dies

By The Compass | March 5, 2014

ALLOUEZ — Deacon Paul Kieffer, 80, died Feb. 28 at his residence in Manitowoc. He was born in Manitowoc on Jan. 25, 1934, to the late John and Lilah (Reindl) Kieffer. His family moved to St. Nazianz shortly after his birth. He attended St. Gregory School and spent considerable time at the Salvatorian Seminary in St. Nazianz. The family moved back to Manitowoc when he was a teenager.

Following high school, Deacon Kieffer served in the U.S. Army and later the Army Reserve. In 1957, he married Shirley Spatchek at Holy Innocents Church in Manitowoc. Deacon Kieffer worked 35 years for Imperial Eastman Co. and 10 years for Tecumseh Products before retiring in 1998.

The call to the diaconate began in 1972 as a member of Holy Innocents Parish. He and  fellow Holy Innocents Parish member Kenn Nelesen were both ordained to the diaconate by Bishop Aloysius Wycislo on May 8, 1978.

Deacon Kieffer was appointed to Holy Innocents Parish and would continue to serve as a deacon at St. Francis of Assisi Parish following the consolidation of the Manitowoc parishes. He also served as a field advocate for the tribunal of the Diocese of Green Bay. Other ministries included facilitating marriage preparation programs and helping to develop a social concerns program to assist people in need with rent and heating expenses.

Deacon Kieffer is survived by Shirley; two children, Randy (Chris) Kieffer, Hershey, Pa.; and Debra (Jerry) Christel, St. Nazianz; four grandchildren, Nathan (Heather) Kieffer, Megan Kieffer and her fiancé Keith Luckow, Joseph (Carina) Christel and John Christel; a great grandson, Dean Hunter Kieffer; a brother, Richard Kieffer, Manitowoc; two sisters, Mary Trulen, Dodgeville, and Bernedette Meisner, Luck; nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. Deacon Kieffer was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, John and Reinhardt; and a sister, Margaret Schleh.

The funeral Mass was celebrated March 4 at St. Francis of Assisi Church on Waldo. Bishop David Ricken presided. Entombment followed at Knollwood Mausoleum, Manitowoc.

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