Biographies

Father Edward V. Mueth, MM

Born: December 11, 1897
Ordained: June 15, 1924
Died: July 23, 1983

It is not easy to report that another member of the Maryknoll Family has died, but we do take comfort in the fact that we have a Legion of Saints in the Kingdom of Heaven who continue to support spiritually the endeavors of all living Maryknollers. After fifty-nine years in the missionary priesthood, at the age of 85, Father Edward Mueth died on the 23rd of July at Phelps Memorial Hospital. Father had been in residence at St. Teresa’s.

On the 11th of December, 1897, Edward Mueth was the 8th child born to John Mueth and Margaret Bockins in St. Louis, Missouri. His early years of educational formation were in St. Louis at Saint Henry’s Parish School and then at Loyola Hall. He spent one year at the St. Louis Preparatory Seminary before he entered Maryknoll in 1918. He attributed his missionary vocation to various missionary publications and to the encouragement of his spiritual advisor.

One of sixteen, he was ordained to the priesthood on June 15, 1924. His first assignment was to Kongmoon, China, where he served the Chinese people for twenty-six years. In 1950, for another seven years, he was assigned to Hong Kong, giving him a total of thirty-three years in the Far East. In 1957 he was assigned to Hawaii and remained there until 1964 when he took up residence at Mt. View because of bad health. In 1975 he was made a member of the Special Society Unit and in 1981 he moved to St. Teresa’s.

While Father Mueth was working in mainland China and in Hong Kong he had several occasions to serve the spiritual needs of others. On one such occasion he seized the opportunity to come to the aid of a dying boy. He forced his way beneath the twisted wreckage of a truck that had careened out of control and crashed into the wall of the British Navy Yard, in order to give absolution to a dying British soldier. The young soldier was a motorcycle messenger who had been caught by the rocketing truck just before it hit the wall. Father crawled to a position beside the boy and gave him conditional absolution before he died.

The Wake Service for Father Mueth was held on July 26th at 7:30 p.m, with Father Thomas McDermott officiating and Biography read by Father Joseph Lang. Mass of Christian Burial took place the next day. Principal Celebrant was Father James Noonan, Homily by Father Robert Sheridan and graveside absolution by Father J. Halbert.