Very Reverend Carl A. Piepenbreier, O.P.

Thirteenth Pastor, 1962-1976

Father Clemens HammerFather Piepenbreier was born in Essen, Germany on February 18, 1910. He was ordained in Cologne on July 25, 1936 and shortly emigrated to America. Arriving in 1938, he became a professor of classical languages at St. Gregory Seminary where he taught for 22 years. During this time, he also worked to raise funds for the Dominican Missions throughout the world and traveled extensively in South America and the Far East. In 1962, after a series of “short-term” pastors, Father Piepenbreier became the thirteenth pastor of Old St. Mary’s. He quickly instituted programs to bring people back to Old St. Mary’s and worked to encourage young people to return to the church. He began to celebrate Masses regularly in Latin, German, French, Spanish and Hungarian. He died on November 4, 1976 while still pastor and was buried at Gate of Heaven Cemetery.