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Rev. Lawrence Schmuhl

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Rev. Lawrence Schmuhl Obituary

Family-Placed Death Notice

SCHMUHL, Lawrence Rev. Lawrence R. Schmuhl, S.M. Rev. Lawrence R. (Larry) Schmuhl, S.M., died Monday, August 22, at Northeast Atlanta Health and Rehabilitation Center, where he had recently resided. He was 90 and had been in declining health since May. A native of Chicago, Father Schmuhl entered the seminary at St. Mary's Manor, Penndel, PA, in 1934. On September 1 he would have marked 70 years as a member of the Marist Fathers and Brothers, the religious order he joined through a profession of vows in 1941. His theology studies were at Marist College, Washington, DC, where he was ordained a Catholic priest in 1947. His earliest years as a priest were spent in three brief assignments: Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Minneapolis; Sacred Heart Church, Atlanta (with responsibility for St. Joseph's Church, Marietta, GA); and Marist College (now Marist School), Atlanta. In 1950 he began 18 years in service to the Marists as Vocation Director and Director of the Mission Band. In both of these roles, he was a preacher and presenter, for which works he was eminently suited by his temperament and talent. In 1968 Father Schmuhl returned to Atlanta, where, except for two years at St. Joseph's Church in Paulina, Louisiana, he remained in a variety of assignments until his death. In 1968 he became Superior of the Marist Community at Marist School, and in 1974 Business Manager of Marist School, in which roles he exercised both his good business sense and legendary generosity. From 1980 to 1985 Father Schmuhl was pastor of St. Joseph's Parish, Marietta, GA, where he later returned as associate pastor through 1996, when he retired to the residence at Marist School and began a ministry as assisting priest to Our Lady of the Assumption Parish, Atlanta, and many other venues. As a visitor to and helper at churches, schools, and hospitals throughout North Georgia, he was known by clergy, religious, and laity far and wide. He remained in contact throughout his life with people from all his long- and short-term assignments. An avid golfer until recently, Father Larry frequented Atlanta-area courses in the company of fellow priests, Marist alumni, and other friends. In this and in all his undertakings, he was unfailingly self- effacing, jovial, and encouraging. His evenings were often spent checking on those who were widowed or recovering from sickness, and his daily mail overflowed with cards and notes from the many he had befriended or served. Father Schmuhl is survived by sisters Valerie Chathas (Gus) of Hickory Hills, IL, and Marguerite Pietraszak (Walter) of Munster, IN. He was preceded in death by parents Lawrence and Valerie (Waldron) Schmuhl; sister, Mary Jane McNally; and brothers Robert and James. A visitation will be held at Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic Church, Wednesday, August 24, 6:30-9:00 p.m., with a service at 7:30. The Mass of Christian Burial will be conducted, also at Our Lady of the Assumption, at 4:30 p.m., Thursday, August 25. Burial will be Friday, August 26, in the Marist plot at Westview Cemetery, Atlanta, at 11:30 a.m. Suggested memorials are to the Father Lawrence Schmuhl Scholarship Fund at Marist School, the Marist Fathers and Brothers (Society of Mary), or a recipient of one's choice. Services arranged by Fischer Funeral Care, Atlanta (678) 514-1000.
Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution from Aug. 23 to Aug. 24, 2011
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