+ Friar Curt Kremel OFM Conv. (1946-2024)

Friar Curt (Robert Curtis) Kreml, OFM Conv., 77, a Franciscan Friar of Our Lady of the Angels Province, died peacefully on Thursday, July 4, 2024, at Port St. Lucie, Fla.

Born in Oak Park, Ill. on September 22, 1946, he was a son of the late Robert and Ellen (nee Dillon) Kreml. In addition to his Franciscan family, he leaves his sister, Bette Lybrook. brother, Thomas Kreml, both of Las Vegas, Nev., sister-in-law, Sandy Kreml, of Forest Grove, Org., as well as numerous nieces and nephews that he dearly loved. He was predeceased by his brothers Norman and Roger Kreml. 

The Kreml family moved from Illinois to Phoenix, where Friar Curt was raised, eventually settling in Las Vegas. He earned his B.A. in Political Science from the University of San Francisco in 1968. After graduation, he enlisted in the United States Army, stationed in Germany for three years and serving in Vietnam before his honorable discharge.

Friar Curt entered the Novitiate of the Conventual Franciscans in Lake Forest, Ill., in September 1972, making his first profession of vows on July 28, 1973. He completed theological studies at St. Anthony-on-Hudson Seminary in Rensselaer, N.Y., professing Solemn Vows on Oct. 7, 1975, before earning his M.Div. in 1976. He was ordained a friar preist on July 17, 1976.

Friar Curt served three years as the assistant pastor of Assumption Church in Syracuse. From 1978 to 1982, he attended St. Patrick’s College in Ireland, earning his S.T.L., a degree he used as a professor of Moral Theology at St. Anthony-on-Hudson. In 1988, he began an eight-year tenure as chaplain and campus minister at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C. During this time, he served a term as director of Campus Ministry for the Diocese of Charlotte.

After taking a sabbatical year, Friar Curt served as director of Candidates in Philadelphia from 1997 until 2005, when he became pastor of St. Peter Church in Point Pleasant, N.J., ministering there through 2011. Returning to formation work for a few years, he became the co-director of the Post-Novitiate program in Silver Spring, Md. In 2014, Friar Curt began his last assignment, as parochial vicar of St. Lucie Parish in Port St. Lucie, Fl

Visitation hours in Florida will be held Friday July 19, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., at St. Lucie Catholic Church (280 SW Prima Vista Blvd, Port St. Lucie FL 34983), with a Franciscan Wake Service at 7 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place on Saturday, July 20, at 11 a.m., at St. Lucie Catholic Church. 

Additional visitation hours will be held in New Jersey on Thursday, July 25, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., at St. Peter Catholic Church (406 Forman Avenue, Point Pleasant Beach NJ 08742), with a Franciscan Wake Service at 7 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place on Friday July 26 at 11am. Internment at a later date at Our Lady of Lourdes Cemetery, Trenton N.J. Memorial Donations may be made to the Franciscan Education Burse (12300 Folly Quarter Road, Ellicott City MD 21042).