Monsignor Edward W. Manalis, 49, St. Ann pastor

November 15, 2001|By Frederick N. Rasmussen | Frederick N. Rasmussen,SUN STAFF

Monsignor Edward William Manalis, pastor of St. Ann Roman Catholic Church in Hagerstown who also held various positions within the Archdiocese of Baltimore, died Monday of a heart attack at Washington County Hospital. He was 49.

Since 1991, Monsignor Manalis had been pastor of St. Ann. This month, he was installed as a Knight of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre. He was named a monsignor by Pope John Paul II in 1999.

"He has been a zealous priest and devoted pastor and accepted willingly new responsibilities for leadership. I mourn him as a priest and good friend," Cardinal William H. Keeler, archbishop of Baltimore, said yesterday.

FOR THE RECORD - A correction was made for the online archive. Original story can be viewed on microfilm.

On Sunday, more than 400 parishioners gathered at the Sheraton Four Points Motel in Hagerstown to give Monsignor Manalis a surprise 50th birthday party.

"His actual birthday is Christmas Day, and we decided to give him a surprise birthday party now before the season got so busy," said the Rev. Michael J. Jendrek, associate pastor and friend of 15 years. "He really, really enjoyed himself."

"A lady sang a solo of "Oh Danny Boy," and he just glowed," said Frances K. Startzman, a church member. "He was a good shepherd and made Christ live for us."

Monsignor Manalis was not only popular in his church, but was also a well-known and respected figure in Washington County.

In 1999, he was named Vicar Forane by Cardinal Keeler and was responsible for overseeing 20 parishes in Western Maryland.

Since 1991, he had been president of Washington County Catholic Charities Advisory Board. He was a member and former vice president of the Washington County Council of Churches.

His archdiocesan appointments included chairman of the Central Region Strategic Planning Group for Frederick and Washington counties, lecturer in the Church Leadership Institute and chairman of the Archdiocese of Baltimore Liturgy Resource Network.

"He could relate to all kinds of people, from the littlest child to the eldest member of the congregation. He very much enjoyed being a priest, had a good sense of humor, was an excellent speaker and gave wonderful homilies," said Father Jendrek.

"He always had a twinkle in his eye and a big smile. He was a man of enormous kindness and generosity," said Monsignor Jeremiah Kenney, Judicial Vicar for the Archdiocese of Baltimore. "He was my right arm when he was my assistant. He was a truly talented man in every way."

Born and raised in Southwest Baltimore, he was a graduate of Mount St. Joseph High School and earned his bachelor's degree in 1973 from St. Mary's Seminary in Catonsville.

He began his theological studies at the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium in 1973 and received a degree in theology. He also earned his master's in theology there in 1976 and a second master's degree in ethics in 1977.

He was ordained a priest by Archbishop William D. Borders at the Basilica of the Assumption in 1977 and was named assistant pastor of Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church in Glen Burnie.

He held several archdiocesan positions, including that of assistant chancellor for several years beginning in 1989.

He was also an accomplished sailor and avid fisherman.

A Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow at St. Ann in Hagerstown.

Monsignor Manalis is survived by his sister, Elizabeth Pirzchalski of Baltimore.

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