Father Ardolf was longtime Norwood Young America pastor

| December 21, 2015 | 1 Comment
Father Paul C. Ardolf

Father Paul C. Ardolf

Father Paul C. Ardolf, who died Dec. 19 at the age of 91, spent 66 years as a priest of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, more than 31 of those at Ascension in Norwood Young America, the parish he called “family.”

Born in Silver Lake in 1924, he was ordained in 1949, one of a class of 12 from the St. Paul Seminary.

Father Ardolf served lengthy stints in his pastoral assignments. He spent the first 14 years of his priesthood as an assistant pastor at St. Stephen, Anoka. He was an assistant pastor at Holy Family, St. Louis Park, for less than a year before being named to his first pastorate at St. Anne in Hammel.

Father Ardolf served there for 17 years before being assigned in 1981 as pastor of Ascension in Norwood Young America, where he led the parish for 24 years.

After his retirement, Father Ardolf continued to live in the rectory at Ascension and to serve as a priest there and at nearby St. Bernard, Cologne.

Due to failing health, he celebrated his last Mass at Ascension in February 2013 and moved to the Leo C. Byrne Residence for priests in St. Paul.

The Norwood Young America Times noted Father Ardolf’s quick wit and dry sense of humor in reporting Father Ardolf’s leaving in 2013, which occurred about the same time that Pope Benedict XVI announced his own retirement.

“Somebody joked that the pope heard about my retirement so he decided to do likewise,” Father Ardolf said with a laugh. “Leaving Ascension, that was family to me, and it was a difficult choice to make.”

Visitation will be held Dec. 29 from 4-8 p.m. at Ascension, 323 Reform Street North, Norwood Young America. A Vigil Prayer Service will be at 8 p.m. with a prayer vigil from 8:30 p.m. – 12 midnight.

The Mass of Christian Burial will be 11 a.m. Dec. 30 at Ascension with a visitation one hour prior to Mass at the church. A luncheon will immediately follow Mass.  Interment will be at St. Joseph’s Cemetery in Silver Lake.

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