SPENCER – Fr. Robert Morhous, O.C.S.O. of St. Joseph's Abbey, passed away peacefully in the abbey's infirmary on the morning of January 28th. Born George Reid Morhous, in Albany, New York, on November 10, 1932, he was the son of Francis E. and Frances V. (née Smith) Morhous. He graduated from The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester.
On September 11, 1954 he entered St. Joseph's Abbey in Spencer. He pronounced his solemn vows in 1959 and was ordained a priest later that same year. His seminary training was conducted both at St Joseph's Abbey and at the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas (The Angelicum) in Rome, Italy. He also received a degree in liturgy from Notre Dame University in Indiana.
Over the span of his sixty-one years in monastic life Fr. Robert faithfully served St. Joseph's Abbey in very many capacities. He was sub-master of the choir novices, porter, cellarer, guest master, retreat master, shepherd of the abbey flock of sheep, farm manager, director of The Holy Rood Guild and director of Trappist Preserves. He was in charge of the abbey conservation and woodland management and he designed and coordinated the substantial renovation and addition to the abbey infirmary. In the years directly following Vatican Council II, he was the abbey's director of liturgy, translating and adapting liturgical texts from Latin into English.
In addition to his monastic brothers, he is survived by several cousins and many faithful friends. His monastic brothers wish to thank the lay staff at St. Joseph's Abbey infirmary and Gentiva Health Services Hospice Care for the dedicated care they gave him in his final days. With gratitude for the gift of his presence among us, the monks commend Fr. Robert's soul to your prayers. There are no calling hours. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Joseph's Abbey on Monday, February 1st, at 10:30 A.M. Burial is in the abbey cemetery. J. HENRI MORIN & SON FUNERAL HOME, 23 Maple Terrace, Spencer, 508-885-3992, is directing arrangements.