FR. MICHAEL KARL KORYLUK
In the early morning of August 8th 2020 Fr. Michael Karl Koryluk said "yes" one last time, to Jesus’ invitation to “come to me". He is now reunited with his parents, Anna (Amy) and Michael Sr. and many extended family members and dear friends.
Father Michael was born and raised in Winnipeg. His parents came to Winnipeg from Montreal and settled on William Ave. Faith was an important value in the Koryluk home. They were actively involved in the Sacré- Couere and Holy Rosary parish communities. They also cherished their French and Polish cultures. Michael Sr. died at a young age and in the ensuing years Father Michael took very good care of his mother Amy; he was indeed the apple of his mother’s eye.
Father Michael was educated by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary (SNJM) and Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI). He continued his post-secondary education at the University of Manitoba in the Faculty of Education and upon graduation taught for the Assiniboine South School Division for seven years.
Attentive to the Holy Spirit in his life, Michael responded with a "yes" to God's invitation to the vocation of ministerial priesthood. In 1974 he began his formation at St. John XXlll, near Weston, MA, as a seminarian for the Archdiocese of Winnipeg. On April 25, 1979, he was ordained to the ministerial priesthood by Cardinal George Flahiff, CSB at Holy Rosary Church.
Father Michael was a beloved pastor and cared deeply for the communities he served in and with: St. Peter’s, St. Mark’s, St. John Brebeuf, St. Mary’s Cathedral and St. Paul’s College (University of Manitoba). He embraced his gifts as an educator, and these served as guides for him in his ministry as a shepherd and teacher. He connected easily with people and his preaching wove the Gospel into daily life in relevant ways. He had a remarkable presence with young people and a special place in his heart for those who struggled or were in need.
His love for music and theatre drew him to participate in numerous community events : Christmas concerts, volunteer appreciation dinners, and coffee houses. He will always be fondly remembered for his Halloween decorations and costumes which sparked delight in children of all ages.
His knowledge and gift of music blessed everyone around him. Singing and playing the organ for weddings and funerals was part of his life before he entered the seminary. A highlight for Father Michael was codirecting the choir for the mass with the Holy Father, St. John Paul ll, at Bird's Hill Park in 1984.
He shared his gifts and time on various committees and boards in the Archdiocese and the broader community including; the Council of Priests, the College of Consultors, the Liturgical Commission, the Archdiocesan Choir, Dean in both North and South Deaneries, Inter-Diocesan Diaconate Formation, Villa Rosa, MacDonald Youth Services, St. Paul’s High School, and as a Spiritual Guide for Search for Christian Maturity. He also faithfully served the community of St. Mary’s Academy.
Father Michael had many childhood friends that remained dear to him throughout his life. Some of these friends are part of the coffee club that meets regularly at Grant Park Shopping Centre.
It is said that blood is thicker than water and faith is thicker than blood. There are several people who became his family through faith and he loved them dearly. Through the gift of celebrating the Sacraments with them and accompanying them through joyful and difficult moments, Father Michael reflected the love of God. These bonds will be cherished forever. In addition to the many parishioners of the various parishes he served, he also leaves to mourn his loss his extended family in Ontario and Quebec.
Father Michael’s hearty laugh, warm presence, mischievous curiosity, and deep faith has touched the lives of many. He lived his baptismal and ministerial call to the full. Well done good and faithful servant!
In the final weeks of his life, Father Michael was blessed with the extraordinary care and concern from the staff at Deer Lodge Centre, 4W, with special thanks to Dr. Jose. At Deer Lodge they treated him with dignity, respect, and love.
Public viewing will be held on Friday August 14th between 10:00am – 12:00 pm at Holy Rosary Church, 510 River Ave.
Mass of the Resurrection will be celebrated at 2:00 pm, and in compliance with Covid-19 restrictions regrettably attendance is limited to invitation only. Live-streaming of the liturgy will be made available on the Holy Rosary website:www.holyrosarychurch.ca
Flowers are gratefully declined. If you choose to make a donation in Fr. Michael’s memory, please consider doing so to Villa Rosa Inc. or Gonzaga Middle School.