Father Patrick T. Cronauer, O.S.B., a native of Summerhill, PA has been named the Academic Dean of Saint Vincent Seminary, effective July 1. Father Patrick is the son of Marion G. Cronauer of Summerhill and the late Harold T. Cronauer, Sr., and is the fourth oldest of ten children.
Upon completion of his doctorate in Sacred Scripture (S.S.D.) in 1999, from the École Biblique et Archeologique in Jerusalem, Father Patrick was named an Assistant Professor of Sacred Scripture and Biblical Languages at Saint Vincent Seminary and a member of the Formation Committee. His dissertation, titled “The Stories About Naboth (in the Book of Kings): A Search for Sources and Origins,” was directed by the Rev. Francolino Gonçalves, O.P. The dissertation was successfully defended on April 26, 1999, summa cum laude. A condensed and revised version of his dissertation was published in 2005 in the noted series, Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Series, number 424, under the title: The Stories about Naboth the Jezreelite: A Source, Composition, and Redaction Investigation of 1 Kings 21 and Passages in 2 Kings 9.
Father Patrick was promoted to associate professor in the Seminary in October 2006. He served as Director of Solemnly Professed Benedictine Seminarians and Other Religious Seminarians (1999–2008). Since 2000 he has served as Junior Master for the Archabbey. He also serves on the faculty of Saint Vincent College, and is a member of the Council of Seniors for the Archabbey (2000-present), the Rector’s Council in the Seminary (2006-present) and chairs the joint Vocation-Formation Committee (2007-present).
Father Patrick attended Saint Vincent Preparatory School and is a 1973 graduate of Forest Hills High School. He attended Rider College, Lawrenceville, New Jersey, and graduated, cum laude, from Assumption College, Worcester, Massachusetts in 1981 with a bachelor of arts degree in religious studies and a minor in philosophy. He earned a Master of Divinity degree from Weston School of Theology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, with distinction, in 1984 and a Master of Theology degree, with a focus in Scripture, in 1985. He has studied at Saint Vincent Seminary, Centro Studi Italiani in Urbania, Italy, and the Pontifical Biblical Institute, Rome, Italy, from which he received a Licentiate in Sacred Scripture (S.S.L.) in 1996. He also did advanced studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (1993-1994).
Father Patrick’s home parish is St. John, Summerhill. From May of 1972 until January of 1973 he lived and worked in a small Benedictine community in Israel, under the direction of Father Isaac Jacob, O.S.B., and from June of 1973 until June of 1974 he lived and worked in a small Benedictine community in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, under the direction of Father Maurice Rudiselle, O.S.B. From August of 1974 until May of 1976 he was a member of the Benedictine Abbey of the Dormition, Mt. Zion, Jerusalem, Israel. He joined the Augustinians of the Assumption in 1977. He made simple profession of vows on August 27, 1978 in Boston, and perpetual profession of vows on August 28, 1982 in Worcester, Massachusetts. He was ordained a priest by Bishop Bernard Flanagan in Worcester, Massachusetts on November 17, 1984. Father Patrick returned to Saint Vincent Archabbey on July 1, 1989 and his official transfer of perpetual vows was made at Saint Vincent on May 26, 1992.
Prior to his arrival at Saint Vincent Archabbey, his service included: working on archaeological digs on Mount Zion, Jerusalem, Israel (1972 and 1975); teaching in the Diocesan Learning Center for Mentally and Physically Handicapped Children, Trenton, New Jersey (1973-1974); organizing and directing youth volunteers to work at Saint Anne and Saint Patrick Parish/Shrine, Fiskdale, Massachusetts (1978); organizing, recruiting and assisting in the directing of the Lay Volunteer program at Saint Peter in Gallicantu, Mount Zion, Jerusalem, Israel (summers, 1981, 1982, 1983); volunteering at the Samaritans: A Suicide Prevention and Crisis Intervention Center in Boston, Massachusetts (1982-1983); pastoral and youth ministry during his diaconate summer at Saint Anne and Saint Patrick Parish/Shrine, Fiskdale (1984); serving as associate pastor of Saint Anne and Saint Patrick Parish (1984-1989) and as a member of the Assumptionist Vocation Team (1985-1989).
Father Patrick taught at Saint Vincent College and Saint Vincent Seminary (1990-1992), worked in Campus Ministry (1990-1992); was a senior dormitory moderator (1990-1992); member of the Monastic Schola (1990-1992, 1999-2002) and member of the Monastic Ridge Committee (1992-present), and the Vocation Committee since 2000. Fr. Patrick has also given numerous talks and conferences to both laity and clergy and has served as weekend parish assistant at St. Louise de Marillac Parish in Upper St. Clair in the South Hills of Pittsburgh since 1999.