On Sunday, 25/07/21, the parochial community of Proveis, in Alto-Adige, celebrated, albeit a year late, with great festivity Father Walter’s 50th anniversary of the priesthood. This jubilee could not be celebrated the previous year because of the pandemic and the rather delicate state of Father Walter who suffered an ictus at the end of September 2019.
For this beautiful occasion, the whole parochial community of Proveis, Father Walter’s birthplace, wanted to show great gratitude and deep appreciation for its fellow citizen, a Blessed Sacrament religious.
At the beginning of the Eucharistic Celebration, the president of the Parochial Pastoral Council cordially greeted the jubilarian, accompanied by the parish priest, Siegfried Pfitscher and by me, his confrere and superior of Bolzano; he thanked him for his innumerable contributions to the town of Proveis, for his great passion and his valuable priestly work, and as a doctor at the service of our Blessed Sacrament missions in Congo.
In my homily I first underlined that it is solely due to Fr. Walter that I am today a member of the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament; through his example and his profound Eucharistic spirituality, Father Walter attracted my attention in the year 1990 when I was a young student at the minor seminary of Bressanone. With his great tenacity, willpower and wisdom he always committed himself to being a faithful disciple of Jesus, situating the Eucharistic mystery, celebration and adoration, at the centre of his daily life.
At the end of the Eucharistic celebration, Father Walter expressed heartfelt thanks with very moving words to all those present for coming to this beautiful festive occasion and thus showing him so much kindness, friendship and esteem.
In the square facing the church, the entire population of Proveis, including the mayor, remained a long time, personally congratulating and exchanging a few words with the jubilarian; likewise the beautiful melodies of the musical band and the parish choir, which had already played and sung in the church earlier, raise the tone of this day’s celebration.
After a delicious lunch in the large hall of events, together with Father Walter’s family and relatives, this beautiful day ended, certainly unforgettable for the one being honored.
On 29/09/21 Father Walter celebrated the 60th anniversary of his religious profession with such simplicity but full joy. Father Gianni Furlanetto SSS, the vicar and bursar in Bolzano, visited him in the Health Residence of Cornaiano, near Bolzano, where he has now been for 2 years, and conveyed to him the best wishes from the confreres of Bolzano and from the confrere of Merano.
May God continue to accompany Father Walter, blessing him to be able go on enjoying good physical and spiritual health for a long time.
Father Klaus Costabiei, sss
Superior of Bolzano