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Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Obituaries: Dec. 6, 2019


Bishop Paul D. Sirba 
Bishop Paul David Sirba, 59, Roman Catholic Bishop of the Diocese of Duluth, beloved shepherd of the people of the Diocese of Duluth, dear son, brother, uncle and great-uncle, died of apparent cardiac arrest at his home at St. Rose parish in Proctor on Sunday morning, Dec. 1, 2019, the First Sunday of Advent. Visitation will be from 3-8 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 5 at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Rosary, 2801 East Fourth Street in Duluth, with the praying of the Rosary at 6 p.m. and Vigil Prayers at 7 p.m. Visitation will continue at the Cathedral on Friday, Dec. 6 from 8 a.m. until the Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. Following the Funeral Mass, burial will be at Calvary Cemetery in Duluth. Requiescat in Pace.
Bishop Sirba was born in Minneapolis on Sept. 2, 1960, to Norbert and Helen Sirba. He attended Nativity of Mary Grade School in Bloomington, Academy of the Holy Angels in Richfield, and the College of St. Thomas and St. Paul Seminary in St. Paul. Bishop Sirba received his Master of Divinity degree from St. Paul Seminary as well as a Masters in Arts from the Notre Dame Apostolic Catechetical Institute in Arlington, Va. Paul Sirba was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on May 31, 1986, and served in the parishes of St. Olaf, Minneapolis; St. John the Baptist, Savage; and Maternity of Mary, St. Paul. He also worked in the Spiritual Formation Department at St. John Vianney College Seminary in St. Paul and was a Spiritual Director at St. Paul Seminary in St. Paul. He was appointed Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on July 1, 2009, and was subsequently appointed by His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, as the Ninth Bishop for the Diocese of Duluth. He was ordained Bishop of Duluth on Dec. 14, 2009, the feast of St. John of the Cross.
While a member of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Bishop Sirba was on several committees including the Priority and Plans Committee, Administrative Committee, and the Catholic Home Missions Committee. Bishop Sirba was also an active member of the St. Paul Seminary Board of Directors and the Episcopal Advisory Board for the Institute on Religious Life. He also served as the state chaplain of the Knights of Columbus. 
For the ten years during which Bishop Sirba was the shepherd of the Duluth Diocese, he was known to be an incredibly kind and compassionate pastor, a wise and thoughtful administrator, and a holy and virtuous man of prayer and deep faith. He was a beloved and dear member of the Sirba family, and was revered as a true spiritual father by the clergy, religious and faithful of the diocese. He will be greatly missed.
Bishop Sirba is survived by his mother, Helen of St. Paul; brothers, Reverend Joseph Sirba of Hinckley and John (SueAnn) of Bloomington; sister, Catherine (Scott) of Cannon Falls; many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews; and the clergy and faithful of the Diocese of Duluth.
He was preceded in death by his father, Norbert.

Leona J. Krensing
Leona June “Tootie” Smith Krensing, 85, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2019, at Carefree Living in Babbitt, after a long illness. Funeral services were conducted at St. Pius X Catholic Church in Babbitt on Monday, Dec. 2 followed by burial services at the Argo Cemetery. The Krensing family would like to extend gratitude to all the staff at Carefree Living for their attentiveness and loving care. Memorials are appreciated to the Alzheimer’s Association.
She is survived by her sister, Laura Consolo; brother, John Lotzer; daughters, Julie Keseley (Doug) and Joni Serena (Lee); sons, Jeff, Michael and David; grandchildren, Jennifer Job (Larry), Katie Cochran (Bob), Jarrett Krensing, Erika Lamb (Allan) and Tyler Serena; and great-grandchildren, Carson, Nathan, Lauren, Sierra, Owen and Connor.

Robert L. Bodine
Robert L. “Bob” Bodine, 80, of Virginia, originally of Soudan, passed away on Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019, at Essentia Health Northern Pines Nursing Home in Aurora. Memorial services were held on Friday, Nov. 29 at the Landmark Funeral Home Chapel in Virginia with Deacon Kari Olson officiating.
He is survived by his children, Lori (Steve) Ekman of Bass Lake in rural Gilbert, Debbie Bodine of Virginia and Mark (Mary) Bodine of Babbitt; grandchildren, Kristina (Sean) Peyla, Erika, Andrew and Samantha Ekman, Kelly (Jonathan) Norton and Kari Bodine; great-grandchildren, Ariah and Nolan; sister-in-law, Elizabeth Nikkinen; and numerous nieces and nephews.


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