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Fr. Gregory “Greg” Poser, osc, dies in Onamia

Fr. Gregory “Greg” Poser, osc

The Crosier Fathers and Brothers mourn the loss of our confrere.

Fr. Gregory “Greg” Herman Poser, osc, was born Aug. 27, 1947, in Little Falls, Minn., to Raymond and Elizabeth (Welle) Poser. He was the eldest of seven children.

Fr. Greg died peacefully at the Mille Lacs Health System Long Term Care facility in Onamia, Minn., on March 5, 2024. He was 76.

He attended St. John Nepomuk Catholic School in Lastrup, Minn., and went on to Crosier Seminary in Onamia for high school and junior college. He studied philosophy at St. Francis College (1968–1970) and theology at the Crosier House of Studies, both in Fort Wayne, Ind. (1971–1975).

He entered the Crosier novitiate Aug. 27, 1967, and made his first profession of vows Aug. 28, 1968, in Hastings, Neb. He renewed his vows in 1971 and professed solemn vows in Fort Wayne on March 16, 1974. He was ordained to the priesthood on May 10, 1975, in Fort Wayne.

Prior to his ordination, Greg served in various ministries including as director of a high school retreat program in Fort Wayne (1970–1972) and on the staff of the religious education center in Grand Forks, N.D. (1972–1973). In 1974, Fr. Greg was ordained to the diaconate and completed his in-service at St. Odilia parish in Shoreview, Minn., and went on to serve as its associate pastor from 1975–1978, and then as associate pastor at St. Joseph parish in White Pigeon, Mich., from 1978–1979. Fr. Greg moved to Fort Wayne in 1979 and there served as the Crosiers’ assistant vocation director (1979–1980) and pre-novitiate formation director (1979–1982) and as a chaplain at the veteran’s hospital from 1980–1984, as a spiritual director (1982–1984) and as associate pastor at Queen of Angels parish (1983–1984). From 1985–1989, he served as pastor at St. Joseph’s parish in Kalamazoo, Mich., and was the local superior of the Crosier Community of Kalamazoo for the last two years of that time frame. In 1990, Fr. Greg spent a year at the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago to prepare for his assignment as a faculty member at STFT in Abepura, Papua, Indonesia (1991–2002). He was a pastor in solidum for the four parishes in and around Onamia from 2005–2009; he then served the same cluster of parishes as associate pastor from 2009 until his retirement in 2021.

Fr. Greg had the opportunity to live Crosier Religious Life with confreres in many different Crosier communities: Shoreview (1974–1978; 1984–1985); Kalamazoo (1978–1979; 1985–1990); Fort Wayne (1970–1972; 1979–1984); Chicago (1990–1991); the Proprovince Wayhu Salib in Papua, Indonesia (1991–2003); and Onamia (2003 until his death).

Fr. Greg was an avid bike rider and for nearly a decade he participated in an annual 5-day bike ride “Bike MS: Ride Across Minnesota” (formerly Bike MS: TRAM). The event is the principal fundraiser in Minnesota for multiple sclerosis research and therapies. More than 600 riders take part in the nearly 300-mile ride.

He is survived by his Crosier confreres; and his siblings Cletus, Severin (Mary), Gene (Sue), and Laura; his in-laws David Tripp and Maher Kadmiry; and a large extended family. He was preceded in death by grandparents Herman and Teresia Poser and George and Martha Welle; his parents; his sisters Lois Poser, Gladys Tripp, and Eileen Kadmiry; and a still-born brother. 

The Mass of Christian Burial for Fr. Greg will be held at the Crosier Priory church in Onamia on Saturday, March 16, with the Reception of the Body and Office for the Dead at 9:00 a.m., a time for keeping vigil, followed by the funeral Mass at 11:00 a.m. Burial will take place in the Crosier Priory cemetery. A luncheon served by the local parishes will follow. 

Memorials are preferred to the Crosier Fathers and Brothers, Box 500, Onamia, MN 56359-0500.