We regret to announce the death at the Twenteborg Hospital, Almelo, the Netherlands on 17th March 2012, at the age of 84, of
Br Herman Steffens
May he rest in Peace
Br Herman (Antonius Gerardus) Steffens was born on 1st August 1927 at Tubbergen, the Netherlands. He was the son of Herman Steffens and Aleida Volmerink, and had three brothers and three sisters. His sister Anna ( Zr Hermenegilde) joined religious life as a member of the Sisters of St Charles Borromeo (Onder de Bogen).
Herman was 20 years of age when he applied to join the formation programme for Mill Hill Missionary Brothers at Oosterbeek in 1948. In 1952 he was transferred to Haelen where he remained till 1959, when he was appointed to the Congo. He had taken his Perpetual Oath as a Missionary Brother on 15th August 1955 at Oosterbeek.
Herman worked in the remote village of Boyenge in the Diocese of Basankusu, Congo, but his work was cut short by the political turmoil, anarchy and chaos, which afflicted the Belgian Congo after independence in 1960. He was forced to flee the Congo in 1964, and after a period of rest was appointed to St Joseph’s College, Mill Hill, in order to take charge of the farm. St Joseph’s College and the farm were his home until he retired to the familiar surroundings of Tubbergen in 2006. The home for the elderly “De Eeshof” became his new home, and he enjoyed his retirement in a place where his relatives lived nearby.
Br Herman Steffens lived his life as a Missionary in the Netherlands, the Congo and Mill Hill. He was commended for his dedication and hard work on the farm in Mill Hill, and that he proudly carried the title Mill Hill Missionary Brother. His work was not confined to the farm and grounds of the college. He helped many people who approached him for help. During his many years at Mill Hill he forged strong bonds of friendship with the community of Poor Clare Sisters at Arkley, many students and friends of the college.
Earlier this month he was admitted to the hospital in Almelo with serious health complaints, but recovered well enough to return to the surroundings of the care home “De Eeshof”. His stay there was short. He died peacefully on 17th March at 2.30 am at the hospital in Almelo. The funeral mass will take place at “Missiehuis Vrijland” on Friday 23rd March followed by burial at the Mill Hill cemetery in Oosterbeek.
The previous obituary (4/2012) was that of Fr Karl Meraner, who died at the Marienklinik, Bozen, Italy on 20th February 2012
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