Father Lawrence "Larry" Poetz, 1917-2005

Poetz,_Fr_Lawrence_for_webFather Lawrence "Larry" Poetz, 87, died on March 12, 2005, at Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, Ill.

Father Poetz was born in Chicago in 1917. He entered the Society of the Divine Word at Techny, Ill., in 1931 and was ordained in 1944. He served as teacher, treasurer and dean of students at the Society’s Sacred Heart Seminary, Girard, Penn., from 1945 to 1950.

In 1950, he was transferred to Divine Word Seminary in Duxbury, Mass., where he taught and directed a summer camp. During the 37 years that he worked in the Boston area, he became a popular retreat director. When the seminary became Miramar Retreat Center in 1962, he was appointed rector.

Father Poetz once said, "When I came to Miramar in 1962, I built a five-room lodging in a cement garage, which included my office. I also set up a gift shop in a section of the building. Later on, I built the stone Stations of the Cross in our woods. During the 20 years that I was in charge of Miramar, I never called in a builder. I did all the repair work myself." He served as rector of Miramar Retreat Center until 1982.

From 1982 to 1988, he served as the treasurer of Divine Word Residence at Techny. Father Poetz retired in 1988. A talented craftsman, he spent most of his retirement in his small workshop, refurbishing crucifixes to send to the missions and making whimsical clocks to sell for donations to the missions.

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