Fr. Edward J. Ruetz

October 14, 1925 – March 15, 2021

SOUTH BEND – Edward Joseph Ruetz, 95, retired priest of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, passed away peacefully at Healthwin Healthcare Facility on Monday at 3:55am.
He was born in Racine, WI, on October 14, 1925 to Joseph and Margaret (Meyers) Ruetz who preceded him in death. He is survived by: one sister, Marjorie Narducci, a brother Robert, and a sister-in-law, Carolyn Ruetz. and many nephews and nieces. Brothers: Fr. Louis Miller, Clement Miller, Joseph, Raymond, Thomas and sisters, Mary, Genevieve and Sr. Virginia Miller, OP, also preceded him in death.
He attended St. Joseph Grade School and Central Catholic High School, South Bend, IN. He received his Bachelor in Business from the University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN, in 1947. He worked at the Racine Shirt Company (1947-50) and Sibley Machine & Foundry, (1952-54) in South Bend. During the Korean Conflict he served in the U.S. Army (1950-52). He received his MSW from Loyola University, Chicago, IL (1954-56). He worked at Catholic Social Service of Wayne County, Detroit, MI. (1956-58. He attended St. Mary College, St Mary, KY (1958-1959) and Theological College/Catholic University, Washington, DC (1959-1963), studying theology. He was ordained a priest on December 23, 1962. During his active ministry he served at St. Monica Church, Mishawaka, IN, (1963-65), St Jude Church, Fort Wayne, IN (1965-66), St Mary Church, Fort Wayne, IN (1966-74), all as associate pastor, Holy Cross Junior College, Notre Dame, IN (1974-79), as a teacher at Holy Cross Junior College and assistant chaplain to the Brothers of Holy Cross (1974-79. He served at St. Joseph Hospital, Mishawaka, IN, (1979-1994), as a pastoral care chaplain. He was a member of the National Association of Social Workers, Association of Certified Social Workers, National Association of Catholic Chaplains and Association of United States Catholic Priests. He was a faithful member of a Priest’s Support Group (1979-2015). A founding member of EARTHWORKS Community, Plymouth, IN, where he served on their board of directors for nine years (1989-1998). He is a member of Michiana Call-To-Action. For over thirty years he worked as a team member with the Beginning Experience South Bend organization which sponsored weekend retreats for persons grieving the death of their marriage by being widowed or by being divorced or separated from their spouses. He is a member of a Commonwealth Group. He served as a priest to the Monastery of the Handmaids of the Most Holy Trinity, South Bend, IN (1981-(Present).
He was an advocate for true equality of women to men in the Catholic Church, including the ordination of women to the priesthood, a married priesthood, the full acceptance of homosexuals, lesbians, transgendered persons and same sex married Catholics couples as valued members of the Church, the use of contraceptives by Catholic couples for good reasons, the reception of Communion by Catholics in second invalid marriages, openness and transparency of the Vatican and diocesan officials who would enter into meaningful dialogue with the laity on the above crucial issues, and also, a change from a centralized, male-dominate patriarchal, sexist, misogynist model to a collegial, inclusive feminine/masculine model of governing the Church as in the early centuries of its existence, a more pastoral rather than legalistic approach to divorce and remarriage and a change from clericalism, with its sense of priestly superiority, power and privilege, to a more simple, pastoral model (following Jesus’ example), whereby, from the Pope to the bishops, priests and laity, all are servants to the servants of God, as Pope John XXIII taught us!
In January 2010 he self-published a book, a midrashic novel, The Love Story of Creation—Book I, which tells the 15 billion years of creation history with the Godhead, the Divine Beings, sending forth their infinite divine love energy to give birth and create our immense, evolving Universe and our planet Earth. This began our 15 billion year evolutionary story which continue evolving in our own lifetimes.
He is especially grateful to the Center for Hospice, its entire staff of nurses, bath assistants, social workers, spiritual counselors and behind-the-scene staff, for their compassion, service, care and concern during his last illness. He is grateful to his brother Bob, his sister, Marjorie, his sister-in-law, Carolyn Ruetz, her children, his nieces and nephews, all of his close friends who were “human angels” to him during his life and during his last illness.
At the personal request of Ed Ruetz, his funeral will be celebrated at the McGann Hay Funeral Home, Granger Chapel, 13260 SR 23, enter off Cherry Rd., in Granger, IN, on Thursday at 11:00am. Visitation will be from 4-7 p.m. with a short vigil service at 4 p.m. on Wednesday in the funeral home. Burial will follow at his gravesite in Cedar Grove Cemetery, Notre Dame, IN.
Memorial Gifts can be given to Moon Tree Studios, P.O. 1, Donaldson, IN 46513. McGann Hay Funeral Homes are in charge of the arrangements

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