Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington



From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302


Jesuits celebrate jubilees of priestly ordination

the Inland Register

(From the September 19, 2013 edition of the Inland Register)

Jesuit priests from the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus are celebrating milestone Jubilees of 60, 50 and 25 years since their ordination into the priesthood.

60 Years of Priesthood

Jesuit Father Leon Kapfer entered the Society of Jesus in 1940 and was ordained in 1953. His first assignment as a priest was at Bellarmine Preparatory School in Tacoma, Wash.

In 1964, he was assigned to help build the Catholic Church in Africa. He taught English to the seminarians at Mpika, Zambia, and was the Jesuit Mission Superior. Father Kapfer found great consolation in seeing the African Church grow and be led by its own people.

A 20-year stint as an assistant pastor at St. Joseph Parish, Seattle, completed his active priestly ministry. He is now in Spokane, praying for the Church and the Society of Jesus.

Jesuit Father James Reichmann entered the Society of Jesus in 1940. During seminary he taught at his high school alma mater, Gonzaga Preparatory School.

In 1953 he was ordained in Rome, where he studied theology and later earned a Doctorate in Philosophy from the Gregorian University.

From 1955 until 2009, he taught philosophy at Seattle University. He published a widely-used philosophy textbook and a study of human/animal intelligence, as well as articles on Aquinas, Scotus, Heidegger, and Edith Stein.

Father Reichmann was active in offering Mass and hearing confessions throughout the Seattle area, as well as teaching cloistered and lay Carmelites. Today, Father Reichmann is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Seattle University.

50 Years of Priesthood

Jesuit Father Robert Goebel entered the Society of Jesus in 1950 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1963. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Gonzaga University and a Master of Arts in Theology and a Master of Arts in Education from Santa Clara University in California.

During his time at Gonzaga Preparatory School in Spokane, Father Goebel served in variety of positions, including as a vice principal, religion and English teacher, vice president, director of alumni, and pastoral minister. He also served as pastoral minister at Bellarmine Preparatory School in Tacoma, Wash.

He is now living in Spokane, praying for the Church and the Society of Jesus.

Jesuit Father Paul Fitterer was ordained in June 1963. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Gonzaga University in 1956, as well as a Licentiate of Philosophy and Master of Arts in Philosophy the following year. He completed a Licentiate of Sacred Theology and Masters of Arts in Theology in 1964 at Santa Clara University in California.

Over the years, Father Fitterer served Jesuit educational institutions in a variety of roles, including teacher, counselor and campus minister, as well as president of Seattle Preparatory School. He also served as formation director and socius of the Oregon Province Novitiate. The new Community Ministry Center at Seattle Preparatory School will be named in his honor.

Father Fitterer is the assistant in community ministry and development at Seattle Preparatory School.

25 Years of Priesthood

Jesuit Father James Voiss entered the Society of Jesus in 1978 and was ordained in 1988 after earning a Bachelor of Arts degree from Gonzaga University and a Master of Divinity and Licentiate of Sacred Theology from the Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge, Mass.

He later went on to receive a Doctorate of Philosophy in Theology from the University of Notre Dame in Indiana.

Father Voiss has served as a professor of theology at Gonzaga University and St. Louis University, and is currently assistant vice president for mission at Gonzaga University.


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