Chrysogonus Wadell, OCSO
1930 - 2008
1930 - 2008
Fr. Chrysogonus Waddell, OCSO, passed from this life and entered the life eternal on November 23, 2008, the solemnity of Christ the King. Born in 1930 to parents serving in the military and stationed in the Philippines, he converted to Roman Catholicism in 1949 and entered the Abbey of Our Lady of Gethsemani on August 2, 1950.
Fr. Chrysogonus was ordained to the priesthood on May 31, 1958. He studied music composition with Vincent Persichetti at the Curtis Institute of Music and pursued further theological studies in Rome at the College of San Anselmo. Blessed with many talents and an exuberant spirit, Fr. Chrysogonus returned the gifts generously and tirelessly. His musical compositions are known and played throughout the world.
Following in the tradition of his fellow Cistercian, Thomas Merton, Father Chrysogonus lived in a hermitage away from the abbey for nearly thirty years. He was choirmaster at the abbey for a number of years. In addition to his compositions, Father Chrysogonus published many scholarly works and translations of monastic and liturgical texts. A widely-recognized chant scholar, and consultor on chant and translations to the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL), he traveled frequently, presenting at musicological and Cistercian conferences.
Humble and faithful, humorous and devout, he sought the face of the Lord with zeal and tenacity. May his song in heaven be jubilant and eternal!
Tribute prepared by Gethsemani Abbey with additional information from Alan Hommerding of World Library Publications.