Father Chester Nowicki, 1919-2007
Respected treasurer, administrator remembered for his devotion to Catholics in Poland
Divine Word Father Chester Nowicki, 87, known throughout the worldwide Society of the Divine Word for his financial expertise, died on March 26, 2007, at Divine Word Residence in Techny, Ill.
Father Anthony Pernia, superior general of the Society of the Divine Word, praised Father Nowicki, saying, "He recognized problems, but he always projected an attitude which said that our problems should not overwhelm us and our mission."
Born in Chicago on Nov. 9, 1919, Father Nowicki attended St. Ann Grammar School. He was ordained at Techny in 1946 and spent many years teaching and administering at Divine Word seminaries in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Illinois. In 1964, he was assigned to Conesus, N.Y., where he was both the community rector and the president of the Society’s 150-acre winery.
For 26 years Father Nowicki served as treasurer at the province headquarters in Techny. He also directed fund-raising efforts and was especially interested in providing for the education of seminarians in Poland during the decades it was under Communist domination.
In addition to his administrative work, Father Nowicki said Mass and ministered among Polish-speaking communities in Chicago and the suburbs. In his later years, he suffered from macular degeneration but asked people to read reports to him so that he could remain active even though he was officially retired and legally blind.
He is the brother of Joan (the late Matthew) Madej, the late Sophia and Stanley Nowicki; dear uncle of four, great uncle of 11, friend and counselor to many.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on March 31 with burial at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Techny.