DE PERE — Sixty years ago, June 12, 1954, marked a significant moment in the life of Abbot Emeritus Jerome G. Tremel, who was ordained to the priesthood as a Norbertine Father. In that moment, Abbot Tremel took the next step in a journey that would lead him from a career as a high school instructor to the position of abbot of St. Norbert Abbey in De Pere and across the country in various other capacities of leadership within the Norbertine Order.
A native son of Ss. Peter and Paul Parish in Green Bay, Abbot Tremel became interested in the Norbertines as a student at Central Catholic High School, where his teachers were Norbertine priests. It was at this age that he realized a vocation in the religious life was in his future.
He attended St. Norbert College, from where he earned a teaching degree, while keeping in mind the sense of community that then led him into the order. As a priest, he experienced the community and collegiality of Norbertine life. Fostering these charisms and embracing the spirit of Vatican II eventually became Abbot Tremel’s mission during his tenure as abbot from 1970 to 1982.
Through the years, Abbot Tremel has made it very clear that what is most important for him is his solemn profession in the canonical life, which he celebrated with much enthusiasm on his 50th anniversary.
On Friday, June 6, the feast of St. Norbert, the Norbertine community will recognize Abbot Tremel for the manner in which he has embodied the Norbertine way of life. They will commemorate his 60-year ordination anniversary with a Mass in the Abbey Church at 4:30 p.m. Abbot Gary J. Neville will preside at the liturgy.