Putzer, Joseph

views updated


Theologian and canonist; b. Rodenek, Austrian Tyrol, March 4, 1836; d. Ilchester, Maryland, May 15, 1904. He was professed a Redemptorist Aug. 14, 1856, studied at St. Barbara's Seminary, Mautern, and was ordained Aug. 7, 1859. For two years he was a lector at Mautern, and for 14 more he served as a missionary at Eggenburg and Innsbruck, Austria, before immigrating to America in 1876. He spent the next 11 years in the active ministry as assistant at St. Alphonsus, and St. Michael's, Baltimore, Maryland, and as superior at St. Mary's, Buffalo, New York, before going to Ilchester in 1887. There he taught theology and Canon Law for the remainder of his life, except for three years (189396), when he was again superior at St. Mary's, Buffalo, and assistant in St. Michael's, Baltimore. In 1893, in reediting a work previously published by Anthony Konings, CSSR, Commentarium in Facultates Apostolicas, Putzer so revised and enlarged it that it was a new work. Writers on both sides of the Atlantic immediately acclaimed it for its clearness, depth, and accurate scholarship. His Instructio de Confessariis and many articles in Catholic periodicals and newspapers also reflected his wide and exact knowledge, keen power of analysis, and unerring judgment. Bishops and priests constantly sought his opinion in difficult cases of theology and Canon Law.

Bibliography: Archives, Redemptorist Fathers of the Baltimore Province. c. mader, Die Congregation des allerheiligsten Erlösers in Österreich (Vienna 1887). m. de meulemeester, et al., Bibliographie générale des écrivains rédemptoristes, 3 v. (Louvain 193339) 2:335336. j. f. byrne, The Redemptorist Centenaries (Philadelphia 1933). m. j. curley, The Provincial Story (New York 1963). American Ecclesiastical Review 30 (1904) 614.

[m. j. curley]