The Most Reverend Remi De Roo, Bishop Emeritus of Victoria, died on February 1st, in Victoria, at the age of 97.
Born to a devout family in Swan Lake, Manitoba, on February 24th, 1924, De Roo left home at the age of 15 to study for the priesthood at St. Boniface Seminary in Winnipeg. De Roo was ordained as a priest on 8 June 1950. He was named the youngest Bishop in the world when Pope John XXIII elevated him to the position at the age of 38. He was an active participant at the Second Vatican Council from 1962 to 1965, and was the last surviving bishop to have attended all four sessions. He described himself as "a pilgrim of the Second Vatican Council". He said attending the sessions was "a voyage of discovery that would radically alter my whole outlook on reality" and "it was indeed a time of euphoria". At the mandatory retirement age of 75, his resignation was accepted by the Holy Father on March 18th, 1999.
During his episcopal ministry, Bishop De Roo chaired the social justice committee of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, was the main force behind the 1983 Canadian bishops' statement Ethical Reflections on the Economic Crisis, wrote and taught extensively, and formed strong ecumenical and interfaith bonds with leaders in communities on Vancouver Island and beyond.
The vigil prayers for Most Rev. Remi De Roo, Bishop Emeritus of the Diocese of Victoria, will be held at St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Victoria on Friday, February 11th at 5:00 pm. His funeral will follow on Saturday, February 12th at 11:00 am, also at the Cathedral.
Parishioners who wish to attend the funeral in person are asked to RSVP before 1:30 pm on Friday, February 11th by calling St. Andrew’s Parish Office at 250-388-5571. Covid-19 restrictions will limit attendance to 50% of the capacity of the Cathedral, and face coverings must be worn by all people aged 5 and older. The funeral will also be livestreamed at https://youtu.be/8LqjMnOOMDw.
May he rest in peace, and may perpetual light shine upon him.