The Congregation of the Mission Province of Puerto Rico shared details of the funeral rites for Fr. Stanisław Szczepanik, C.M., who died suddenly on Saturday, August 17, 2019.
The exequies of Fr. Stanislaw Szczepanik, CM will be held on Tuesday, 27 August 2019 at La Milagrosa Parish in the town of Ponce.The church will open its doors from 2:00 pm on Tuesday, for the benefit of those who wish to go and pray for the eternal rest of our brother Father Stanislaw. The Eucharist will be at 6:00 pm.The bishop of Ponce, Rubén González, CMF and the bishop of Arecibo, Daniel Fernández, will be with us. Priests from the dioceses of Ponce, Arecibo and San Juan are expected, as well as Vincentian Fathers from the three countries that make up the Province Puerto Rico of the Congregation of the Mission.We urge all the parishioners of Father Stanislaw and members of the Puerto Rican Vincentian Family to join in this celebration of Christian hope.We are grateful for the expressions of solidarity of so many people, even from other countries, who have written and called to offer their respects to an extraordinary priest whom Fr. Stanislaw was.We are also grateful for the efforts of the doctors at the Hospital Pavía de Ponce, the Puerto Rico Police, and the professionals of Ciencias Forenses [Forensic Institute]. We would like to extend our gratitude to the communication professionals for their interest in our unexpected loss.The remains of Father Stanislaw will be cremated and deposited in the crypt of the Vincentian Fathers of our church San Vicente de Paúl de Santurce.Till the mission of Heaven.Vincentian Fathers,Province of Puerto Rico
The pastor of La Milagrosa Parish in Ponce published the invitation to take part in the funeral rites. Fr. Stanisław celebrated his last Eucharist in this church on the feast of the Assumption. We came here to help other Confreres in their ministry for some time. In the announcement published in local media we read:
“The Congregation of the Mission, Vincentian Fathers, Parish of La Milagrosa de Ponce and its pastor Fr. Socrate Loupe, C.M., invite you to exequies of someone who during his life was † Fr. Stanisław Szczepanik, C.M.His body will received in the church atrium this coming Tuesday, August 27 at 1:00 PM [7:00 PM in Europe] where the wake will be held.At 6:00 PM [midnight in Europe] the Exequial Mass will be celebrated followed by the vigil.No doubt we will always remember your highest human qualities, your dedication as God’s servant, your simplicity, and your love for the poor, so that your being will remain alive in our hearts. Rest in peace.”
Father Stanisław Szczepanik arrived to La Milagrosa parish couple days before his death. He had to be engaged in the ministry for some time and worked here earlier for three years after coming back from Poland in 2013. On August 16 in the early morning he was found on the unconscious and wounded on the popular promenade. His bike was next to him. The autopsy and police investigation did not give the cause of death – either it was an accident, a death because of a disease, or an assault. On August 17 doctors in the hospital declared him brain dead due to numerous internal injuries. In his will, Fr. Stanisław stated that he wanted his organs donated for transplantation (it happened) and his body cremated. The autopsy was done on August 19 but the results were not released yet.