Fr. Edwin Kassens (1859-1942)


Father Edwin Kassens, the nephew of Father Peter Kassens, mentioned in the account of the call or vocation of Father Matthias Stein for January 26, was born in Vincennes, Ind.  He came to Kansas and enrolled in St. Benedict’s College.  John Kassens was given the name Edwin and was professed in 1884, ordained in 1889.  He taught in the College until 1902 and then became the one who started St. Bede Parish, Kelly, Kan., where after working in temporary structures, he built the present Gothic church. 

Because of failing eyesight he had to give up pastoral work but was an assistant to Co-adjutor Bishop Francis Joannes at Marysville, Kan., for a year.  For a while as chaplain at the hospital there he was also in charge of the small parish at Sabetha.  In 1936 he was appointed chaplain at Mercy Hospital, Fort Scott, Kan.   

The following is a quote from The Abbey News of January 1943:  “His mature wisdom and rich humor were proverbial among those who knew him; while his witticisms and practical philosophical epigrams never failed to amuse and enlighten those who were near him.  He was a fine character and a well developed and pleasing personality which will be remembered and cherished by his confreres and many friends.”