Rev. Charles J. Bodden, O.S.A. (1950 - 2011)

Rev. Charles J. Bodden, O.S.A., died suddenly on December 16, 2011. He was 61.

Charles John Bodden was born in 1950 in Fond-du-Lac, Wisconsin, to Joseph L. and Irma M. Bodden. He was baptized in 1950 at St. Kilian Catholic Church, St. Kilian, Wisconsin. He received the Sacrament of Confirmation in 1959 at the same church.

He is a 1968 graduate of DeSales Preparatory Seminary, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He entered the Augustinian Novitiate on September 2, 1968. He professed first vows in the Order on September 3, 1969 and solemn (permanent) vows on June 5, 1976. He was ordained a priest on September 16, 1978.

Following first profession of vows in 1969, he began collegiate studies at Tolentine College, Olympia Fields, Illinois. Tolentine granted him a B.A. in Philosophy in 1973. He then did theological studies at Catholic Theological Union, Chicago, where he earned an M.Div. in 1978. He did Formation Studies at CONFER, Lima, Peru, in 1988.

During his theological studies, Charles resided at St. John Stone Friary, Chicago. He did a Deaconate Internship in 1977 at Immaculate Conception/St. Henry Parish, St. Louis, Missouri.

Nearly all of Father Bodden’s priestly ministry has been as a missionary in Peru. In 1979, he was Associate Pastor of Santo Domingo Parish, Santo Domingo.  He was assigned to San Fernando Parish, Chalaco, in 1981 and served as Associate Pastor until 1983, when he was named Pastor.

In 1984, he became Director of the Center of Formation in Santo Domingo. After completing Formation Studies in Lima in 1988, he was assigned in 1989 as a member of the Formation Team at the Santo Tomás de Villanueva house of formation, Trujillo. He returned to Santo Domingo in 1992 as Director of the Center of Formation.

He was named Administrator of San Isidro Parish, Morropón, in 1993. In 1994, he was appointed Associate Pastor of San Isidro.

Father Bodden was named Director of Novices at the Augustinian Center House in Lima in 1997. He served in this position until 2007, when a Peruvian National Augustinian Novitiate program was inaugurated. He then served as Director of Postulants in Lima for one year. He was assigned in 2008 to the Santo Tomás de Villanueva house of formation, Trujillo, as a formator.

In January, 2011, he was again assigned to San Isidro Parish, Morropón. In December, 2011, he went to Lima to assist with needed repairs at the Center House. There he suffered a massive fatal heart attack during the evening of December 16, 2011.

During 21 of Father Bodden’s 32 years in Peru, he was involved in formation ministry, forming young friars not only from his own Augustinian Vicariate of Chulucanas, but also from the other two Augustinian Vicariates in Peru: Iquitos and Apruimac. Thus, he had a great influence on the growth and development of Augustinian life and ministry in Peru.

Rev. Fidel Alvarado, O.S.A., Regional Vicar of Chulucanas, reflected this when he wrote, “We believe that Charlie will always live in our hearts and in all our projects as a Vicariate. Charlie will be with us forever.”

The plaque (above, right) is in the public chapel at the Augustinian Center House of Our Lady of Grace in Lima, Peru. Father Bodden was Director of Novices at this location for 10 years. During that time, he oversaw the construction of the chapel, which serves residents of the neighborhood.

The inscription says: Our hearts will be restless until they rest in you -- Saint Augustine / Father Charles Bodden, O.S.A. / Date of birth July 25, 1950 / Profession September 3, 1969 / Ordained a Priest September 16, 1978 / Died December 16, 2011.

Funeral services were held in Chulucanas, Peru. Memorial Masses were celebrated in Lima and Morropón. Two Memorial Services were held in the United States: one in Chicago and one in St. Kilian, Wisconsin. Father Bodden is buried in Señor de la Divina Misericordia (Lord of Divine Mercy) Cemetery in Chulucanas.

Memorial gifts may be made to Augustinian Missions or Province of Our Mother of Good Counsel, both at 5401 S. Cornell Ave., Chicago, IL 60615-5664, or via our Online Giving Page.