In Memory of Br. Thaddée Matura

Br. Thaddée Matura, a member of the Holy Spirit Province, Canada, died on the evening of January 5, 2020 in the provincial infirmary, Montreal. He was 97 years old and had completed 79 years of religious profession and 71 years of priesthood.

He was born on October 24, 1922 in Zalesie Wielkie, Poland. He began his secondary studies at the Seraphic College, Kobylin, Poland – hence his decision to enter the Franciscans. In April 1938, accompanied by his sister, he joined his father in Canada, in Hamilton (Ontario).

Having entered the novitiate in Sherbrooke (Quebec), on April 7, 1940, he was subsequently ordained priest on June 27, 1948. In 1950, he studied at the Antonianum in Rome and obtained a license in theology in 1952. In 1953 he completed the baccalaureate in Biblical Sciences at the Biblical Commission, Rome. He then spent two years in Jerusalem, studying at the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum, and in 1955 obtained a license in Scripture.

He was a member of several theological, liturgical and ecumenical commissions in Canada and the United States and collaborated in various journals of theology and spirituality.

In 1964, he became a member of the OFM fraternity working with the Taizé Ecumenical Fraternity. He lived there until 1972 and published several writings on Saint Francis and Franciscan spirituality. In his later years he was a member of the OFM fraternity of Avignon, returning definitively to Canada in 2018.

Br. Thaddée Matura is renowned for his numerous publications on Saint Francis and his writings, and on Franciscan spirituality. His long bibliography eloquently bears witness to his work and his Franciscan commitment. His name will live on in the history of Franciscan studies.