Order of Premontre, Premonstratensians, Norbertines, and White Canons

R. D. Basil R. Reuss, O. Praem.

Birth: July 11, 1903

Death: March 20, 1957

House: St. Norbert Abbey

Our brother Basil Reuss was born in Wilkensburg , Pennsylvania in 1903.  He enrolled at Catholic University in 1921 and graduated with an LL.B. in 1925, and began practicing law with a Pittsburgh firm that same year.  Basil came to the college, was vested as a novice in 1929, and spent his novitiate with the first group of novices at the newly opened novitiate in Madison .  From 1930 until 1934, he assisted Fr. Rybrook with the Annals of St. Joseph, writing articles and editing. He professed solemn vows in 1934, and was appointed to the college faculty and as editor of the Annals.

In 1944, Basil became chaplain at the Green Bay Reformatory and remained there until 1948. From 1951 until 1959, as a noted speaker, retreat master, and professor of political science and history, he became well known through radio, and later television.  His commentary on current events called, Let’s Think About It, was very popular throughout the Fox Valley.  He was also a well-read author of articles for the diocesan newspaper, The Green Bay Register.

During the 1950’s, Basil taught homiletics to the junior theologians at the abbey.  After spending hours in preparation, the frat would begin his homily.  “Stop!” Basil would say.  And from there on, for the rest of the class, Basil would wax eloquent on what his thoughts were on the subject.  So much for all the poor frat’s studious and lengthy preparation!

After having just undergone a physical check-up at St. Vincent Hospital, and given a clean slate of health, Basil was found dead in his room on Friday, March 20, 1959.  He was 55 years old.

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