It was a pleasure to read your column about the impact my friend Bernie Vogel made on you. He was truly a man of God and my friend for 65 years.
I would like to share some of the exemplary spiritual activities in which Bernie participated. We met in 1946 at a Young Christian Student’s meeting at St. Ambrose College, under the direction of Fr. Kamerick. It was a movement that fostered spirituality and Christian living. That was the beginning of a long friendship. His musical ability was often used at many of our gatherings.
Bernie was in my wedding party, and when we later had families, we and our families socialized together regularly. He was godparent and sponsor to one of my children who later became a church musician. My son ran into Bernie in Cincinnati at a National Association of Pastoral Musicians convention. Neither knew that the other would be there. He was a friend to my entire family. He was always ready to help me.
Another thing that I became involved in through Bernie was the charismatic movement. He invited me to attend the prayer group at the Carmelite Monastery. It was truly a gift of the Holy Spirit that I received a phone call from Bernie the same day a letter arrived from my spiritual advisor. At that time my spiritual advisor advised me to locate a prayer group in Davenport. We both continued in the Carmelite prayer group until the Carmelites moved to Eldridge.
One of his former employees said that before they started work in the morning, they prayed together. On Fridays, his wife, Mary Frances, would prepare a meal for the employees. Bernie and Mary Frances were always very close to me and my family. Bernie was truly a spiritual man and a man to emulate. We will miss him a lot.