Fr. Henryk Matusik SDS (1943-2014)

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Fr. Henryk Matusik SDS (1943-2014)

Fr. Henryk Matusik was born on January 29, 1943 in Łagiewniki near Bytom in Upper Silesia. He was raised, together with his four siblings, in the family of Wincenty and Agnieszka. He was Baptised and received the Sacrament of Confirmation in his home Parish of St. John Nepomucen in Łagiewniki. Religious atmosphere at home and example of his parents’ faith inspired young Henryk to consider seriously his possible vocation to the Priesthood, after completing his elementary education in 1957.


He had to postpone his plans of continuing his education in the Minor Seminary because of a difficult financial situation of his family. Willing to help his parents he entered the Trade School number 3 in Łagiewniki (specialization: locksmith). However the thought of following his vocation has not left him and therefore, after one year, he signed up for the High School for working adults in Bytom.

In 1960 he made the request for admission to the Novitiate of the Salvatorians as a candidate to the Priesthood. He began his Novitiate formation on August 14, 1960. He took his first religious vows on August 15 1961 in Bagno and received the name of Beniamin. During the years 1961-1969 he studied philosophy and theology in the Salvatorian Major Seminary in Bagno. He made his perpetual profession on August 16, 1964. On June 22, 1968, in Wrocław, he was ordained to the deaconate by the Most Rev. Paweł Latusek. He was ordained to the Priesthood on June 14, 1969 in Mikołów, by the Most Rev. Herbert Bednorz.

Fr. Matusik’s first place of ministry was the Parish of the Blessed Virgin Mary the Mother of Saviour in Mikołów, where he was a parochial vicar in 1969-1972. During the first year of his work there, which was his pastoral year (the so-called tirocinium), he also frequented lectures in the Liturgical Studies Institute by the Pontifical Theology Faculty in Kraków. In 1972 Father Henryk was appointed as responsible for promotion of vocations. Because of his involvement in this apostolate he resided in the community in Kraków, at Łobzowska Street and in Bagno. In 1974-1978 he was a vicar in the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Oborniki Śląskie. In 1975-1978 he was also a vice-superior. Afterwards, during the years 1978-1979, Fr. Henryk worked as a vicar in Saint Jadwiga Parish in Dobroszyce. In 1979 he was sent to the Parish in Bystra Śląska, where in 1979-1981 he was the rector of the church. Later on, in 1981-1984, he served as Pastor of the Parish. From April to August 1984 Fr. Henryk worked in Bielsko-Biała. On August 20, 1984 Fr. Matusik was transferred to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Krzyż Wielkopolski, where in 1984-1988 he served as a vicar. During the years 1988-1994 he was a vicar of the Blessed Virgin Mary the Queen of Poland Parish in Ponice. From June 30, 1994 he was released from his duties as a parochial vicar in Ponice and began his work in the apostolate for missions and parish spiritual retreats. He lived in Więciórka, where in 1994-2003 he helped in pastoral ministry in the local church. In 1995-1996 he was also a consultor of the community. Later on he continued preaching the Word of God as a retreat giver and popular missionary, although he has changed his place of residence to Zakopane-Antałówka (2003-2004) and then to Międzywodzie (2004-2007). After 13 years of his retreat and missionary ministry, by the decree from August 16, 2007, Fr. Henryk was transferred to the Provincial House of the Salvatorian Sisters in Goczałkowice-Zdrój, where he was a chaplain of the house and chapel of the Sisters. In February 2008 Fr. Henryk was released from his duties as the chaplain and transferred to the community in Krzyż Wielkopolski. He was entrusted with responsibilities of a pastoral assistant in the local Parish of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Fr. Henryk Matusik died on October 18, 2014 in Krzyż Wielkopolski. He went to Our Lord at the age of 71, in his 45th year as a Priest and 53rd year of religious life. His funeral took place on October 21st at 3 p.m. in the church of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus in Krzyż Wielkopolski. He was buried at the local Parish cemetery.

Prepared by: Fr. Ireneusz Kiełbasa SDS