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Msgr. Felix Oehrlein dies Print
Clergy obituaries
Friday, Nov. 25, 2011 -- 3:00 PM
Msgr. Felix G. Oehrlein
Msgr. Felix Oehrlein

WISCONSIN DELLS -- Msgr. Felix G. Oehrlein died on November 25, 2011 at University of Minnesota/Fairview Hospital in Minneapolis, Minn. after a sudden illness.

The Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at St. Cecilia Church, 604 Oak St., Wisconsin Dells, on Friday, Dec. 2. Bishop Robert C. Morlino, Bishop of Madison, was the celebrant with Msgr. Charles Schluter, Madison, as homilist.

Burial was in St. Aloysius Catholic Cemetery in Sauk City, at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 3. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Millennium Foundation at St. Cecilia Catholic Church that Monsignor Oehrlein founded.

Monsignor Oehrlein was born on March 17, 1939 in Madison, to Felix and Florence (Smith) Oehrlein, Sr. He grew up in Sauk City, where his family owned and operated Oehrlein Oil Company in Prairie du Sac, for many years.

He attended St. Aloysius School in Sauk City, Queen of Apostles High School Seminary in Madison, and studied philosophy and theology at St. Francis Seminary in Milwaukee. He was ordained to the priesthood on May 29, 1965 by Bishop William P. O’Connor, Bishop of Madison, at St. Raphael Cathedral, Madison. In 1975, Monsignor Oehrlein received a Doctorate in Ministry from the Aquinas Institute of Theology in Dubuque, Iowa.

He served as associate pastor of St. Maria Goretti Parish, Madison, and St. Joseph Parish, Baraboo. He was pastor of Our Lady of Hope Parish, Seymour, with the mission of St. Peter Parish, Elk Grove. He was the founding pastor of St. Augustine University Parish, Platteville; pastor of St. Francis Xavier Parish, Cross Plains; [Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary Parish, Sun Prairie; St. Mary Parish, Pine Bluff; and St. Cecilia Parish, Wisconsin Dells, where he was pastor since 1999.

Monsignor Oehrlein became an Eagle Scout at the age of 15. He served as the dean of the Grant County Deanery; chair of the Diocese of Madison Golden Jubilee Committee; member of the Presbyteral Council and Camp Gray Board of the Diocese of Madison; member of the Catholic Herald Advisory Committee; and a director on the St. Clare Hospital Board, Baraboo. He was a long-time member of the Fourth Degree Knights of Columbus and was chaplain to the Wisconsin State Patrol District One and the Kilbourn Volunteer Fire Department of Wisconsin Dells. In 2005, Monsignor Oehrlein was invested as a Knight in the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem and nominated a Chaplain of His Holiness by Pope Benedict XVI.

Aside from his pastoral duties, Monsignor Oehrlein was an avid hunter and outdoorsman and enjoyed snowmobiling in northern Wisconsin and boating on the Wisconsin River with his dear friends.

He is survived by a cousin, Mrs. Thomas Dergee of Los Angeles, Calif. He was preceded in death by his parents.

Last Updated on Monday, Sep. 17, 2012 -- 11:31 AM
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