Obituary: Benedictine Father Chrysostom Kim

Benedictine Father Chrysostom Andrew Kim, 92, died Dec. 17 in the retirement center at St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Saturday, Dec. 21, at 10:30 a.m. in St. John’s Abbey and University Church with interment in the St. John’s Cemetery.

Hak Bong Kim was born March 16, 1927, in Taegu, Korea, the fifth son of Sang Yun Kim and Ki San Bak. He attended elementary and secondary schools in Taegu where he also became fluent in Japanese. In 1948 Hak Bong came to America to attend the University of Virginia for a semester. Afterwards, he was offered a full scholarship at the College of St. Thomas in St. Paul.

While attending there, Hak Bong met Father William O’Donnell, the vice-president of the college, who gave him instruction in the faith. He was baptized with the name Andrew in St. Mark Church, St. Paul.

He received a bachelor’s degree from the College of St. Thomas, and in 1953, he was accepted as a novice at St. John’s Abbey. Receiving the name Chrysostom he professed his first vows on July 11, 1954. After completing his theological studies, Father Chrysostom was ordained a priest June 4, 1960. His first assignment for one year was as a pastoral associate at St. Augustine Parish, St. Cloud. He then enrolled at the University of Chicago, receiving a master’s degree in political science and, a doctorate in 1970. He taught at St. John’s University from 1967 to 1986, mostly in the honors program.

In 1986 he was assigned to the St. John’s Priory and parish of St. Anselm in Tokyo, Japan.  He was novice master and junior master at St. Anselm’s for seven years.  He also was pastor of the parish from 1989 to 1993. Father Chrysostom returned to St. John’s Abbey where he spent his time as a writer-in-residence and did pastoral work at St. Boniface Church, Cold Spring, from 1996 to 2002.

Author: The Central Minnesota Catholic

The Central Minnesota Catholic is the magazine for the Diocese of St. Cloud.

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