Biographies

Brother Bernard Hansan, MM

Born: August 30, 1906
Oath: September 21, 1935
Died: March 8, 1977

Brother Bernard Hansan died at noon on March 8 at the Hillhaven Nursing Home near Los Altos, California. Brother had suffered for many years from continued illness.

Brother Bernard (who had the religious name Brother Clement until 1964) was born in Denver, Colorado on August 30, 1906. He studied at St. Mary’s College high school in St. Mary’s, Kansas, took college courses in chemistry, and worked as a clerk and a pharmacist before joining Maryknoll in October 1930. He took his Perpetual Oath as a Maryknoll Brother on September 21, 1935. He was one of the Maryknoll pioneers assigned to Japan in 1935, and put in some 35 years of mission service in Japan. Repatriated on the Gripsholm from Japan in 1942, he spent the World War II years working in Detroit, Akron and Hawaii, before being reassigned to Japan in August 1946. In 1957 he became Econome in the Japan Region, working in Kyoto most of the time, until illness forced him to remain in the U. S. in 1975. He was assigned to the Special Society Unit in January 1976, but continued insofar as he was able to do office work at the Japanese Mission in Los Angeles and at Los Altos until recent weeks.

Brother Bernard was a senior Maryknoller whose record of achievement as a missioner would be hard to duplicate. In Personnel Reports, he was described as “thoroughly devoted and reliable”, “a very fine sense of responsibility”, and “completely dependable”. May he rest in peace and receive from the Lord the reward for his labors.

There was a Vigil Service and wake for Brother Bernard at Los Altos with a Mass of the Resurrection at 9 a. m. , Thursday, March 10. Burial followed in our cemetery at Los Altos. Mass of the Resurrection was also concelebrated at 12 noon on Thursday at the Seminary Chapel in New York, with Fr. William Mclntire as Principal Celebrant.