Clarence Cerwonka

Obituary of Clarence Cerwonka

Reverend Clarence J. Cerwonka, born on July 26, 1930, in Wilkes Barre, PA went to be with the Lord on Saturday, January 27, 2024. He was pre-deceased by his parents, Edward, and Nellie Cerwonka; his siblings, Edward, Fred, Martha, Tom, Paul, Michael, and Eugene. He is survived by his siblings Joe, Mary, Jerry, and Barbara along with several nieces and nephews. Father Clarence loved every moment of his childhood and enjoyed playing intramural sports of basketball, football, and baseball. His mentor, Sister Paschal who fussed over him, led him into the Minor Seminary after 8th grade in Girard, PA. There were then two years of Novitiate (Boot Camp), followed by eight years of Major Seminary in Techny, IL. He left the seminary to help move his parents to Carbondale, PA. He then re-entered the seminary in Denver, CO where he was ordained in 1961. His priesthood journey led him to Saint Patrick's in Pueblo, CO, and Shrine of St. Terese where he enjoyed a special friendship with Bishop Buswell. Father Clarence's most memorable time during his priesthood was in the country of Trinidad from 1972 to 1981. During his time there, four Nuns from Texas showed up at his door and introduced him to the Pentecostal movement. This led to several healing Masses and his love the Scripture. In August 1981, he moved to Binghamton, NY. In 1984, he moved to Germany where he served as a civilian Chaplin until 1989 when he moved back to Binghamton to enter Saint Mary of the Assumption. He led Bible studies which led to healing Masses there. He most enjoyed the many speaking tongues and amazing gifts of healing. He was so grateful to Joseph Dalton who visited from Ireland healing many through the Holy Spirit. Father Clarence then moved on to Most Holy Rosary Church in Maine, NY where numerous healing services continued. At most Holy Rosary, the Holy Spirit worked through him, and many faithful parishioners were transformed. He taught that: "If He doesn't show up in you, He isn't going to show up." He was also responsible for establishing the Most Holy Rosary Benevolent Committee. Father especially loved his visits from Father Allam of India and Father Walsh from Philadelphia who led many of the healing services. Father also had special relationships with the Nuns of Windsor most notably Sister Mary Donald, Sister Joan Gunzelman and the Daughters of Charity. Father Clarence enjoyed every moment of every experience leading up to and within the Roman Catholic Priesthood and developed many friendships along the way. His largest imprint was his thirst for scripture; he often said, "God has shown us His face in Scripture." A favorite Scripture was Revelations 3:20-21 "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me." We give thanks for all his wisdom, his wit, and humor. At Father's request, his body was donated to science. Father Cerwonka would like to thank Father Clarence Rumble, Deacon Jim Tokos, Jeanne Garuto, Doris Rovente, Deb Zunic, Elizabeth Ailes, Brian Gallagher, René Stastny, Yvonne Austenfeld, Sue Helmer, Bryan and Deb Takacs, Tamara Osibote along with her staff at "I Care", all the faithful parishioners, and the staff at Mercy House for their love and care. A Vigil will be held on Friday, February 9, at Most Holy Rosary Church, Maine, NY at 7:00 pm. A Memorial Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, February 10, at 11:00 am at Church of the Holy Family, Endwell, NY. A bereavement luncheon will follow. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Mercy House, 212 North Mckinley Avenue, Endicott, NY 13760.

Final Resting Place

Monday, January 29, 2024
Upstate Medical University
Anatomical Gift Program
Syracuse, New York, United States
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