Brother Richard A. Hermann, C.M., was born in Weingarten, MO, on October 31, 1935, one of 15 children of Edward Hermann and Anna Jokerst. As was the custom, Richard was baptized three days after his birth at his home parish, Our Lady Help of Christians, on November 3, 1935. He attended the parish grade school, graduating the eighth grade. After completing his education, he worked with his father and older brothers on the family farm, taking on whatever jobs he was assigned. During his years working on the family farm, Richard learned the skill of welding.
At the age of 22, Richard made application to the Congregation of the Mission to enter the community as a lay brother. When asked why he chose to enter the Congregation of the Mission, he responded that he knew the Vincentians who had taught his older brother, Robert, at the Prep Seminary and at Kenrick Seminary. His brother Robert was ordained to the priesthood and later became an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of St. Louis. Brother Richard’s recommendations for entrance to the Congregation will come as no surprise to those that knew him. The virtues of hard work, a seriousness about life, and a caring for others were the hallmarks of his well-lived life.
He entered the novitiate in June 1958 at St. Mary’s of the Barrens Seminary in Perryville, MO. He lived there until his death on February 4, 2023. After pronouncing vows in 1960, Brother Richard began his work on the seminary farm under the mentorship of Brother Raymond Tochtrop, C.M. Brother Richard worked the farm, taking on more duties and leadership over his years at St. Mary’s until the evening of his life when he became a senior brother in residence. At first blush, it might seem to some that his life was a daily grind. However; it was a life of continued grace. The goodness, kindness, and seriousness of living out his vocation was a life of ever greater growth in holiness.
Brother Richard was active in the charismatic movement in Perryville. As he joined a local prayer group in Perryville, he saw the need to learn more about helping others as they grew in the spiritual life. He enrolled in a program on helping others through spiritual direction. Many individuals have benefited from Brother Richard’s wisdom.
In the 1990s, long before Pope Francis’s encyclical letter, Laudatio sí, Brother Richard and the other brothers began to see their ministry as protecting the environment, especially the land. As their active work tending the fields, planting and harvesting was shrinking, they never forgot that the land must be protected and tended. This was Brother Richard’s gift to the Congregation and to the city of Perryville. In 2006, Brother Richard was assigned to the Ministry of Prayer. As so many of our senior confreres before him and to this day join their prayer to the apostolates of our province, so Brother Richard added his voice interceding for the success of the mission of the community.
Brother Richard’s work, example of prayer and holiness, and his last days of suffering during his final illness have been his final gift to us.
Eternal rest grant unto him O Lord. Let the perpetual light shine upon him!
Reception & Visitation: Friday, February 10, 2023
5:00 p.m. CT: Reception of the remains of Brother Richard Hermann, C.M., Apostle of Charity Residence, Mother of God Chapel, Perryville Missouri
7:00 p.m. CT: Wake and Vigil Service, Mother of God Chapel
Funeral Mass & Rite of Committal: Saturday, February 11, 2023
10:30 a.m. CT: Funeral Mass for Brother Richard A. Hermann, C.M., Church of the Assumption, followed by Rite of Committal in the Community Cemetery