1925 – 2007 (January 14)
Bernard Aloysius Lazor, O.S.A., was born on February 5, 1925, in Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania, the son of John A. Lazor and Anna Marcini. He had two sisters and a brother. He was baptized at Saint Mary Slovak Church in Mahanoy City, and received his education at Saint Mary's Parochial School, and Mahanoy City Public High School. In 1942 he became a postulant at Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, NY. He was received, on September 9, 1943, into Good Counsel Novitiate, New Hamburg, NY, and professed simple vows on September 10, 1944. He received a BA in Philosophy from Villanova College in 1948 and professed solemn vows on September 10th of the same year. He began theological studies at Augustinian College, Washington, DC, and was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop John McNamara on June 5, 1951 at the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, Washington, DC. Father Lazor was sent to complete his studies in Rome in 1951. There he received the Licentiate in Sacred Theology from the Gregorian University, and then studied at the Pontifical Biblical Institute, beginning in 1952. He received the Licentiate in Sacred Scripture in 1956.
Father Lazor was assigned to Augustinian College in 1957 and remained there until 1971, during which time he served as sub-master of professed students from 1957 to 1958, as master from 1958 to 1968, moderator of provincial higher studies from 1965 to 1968, and prior from 1968 to 1971. Throughout these 14 years, he taught Sacred Scripture to the theological students at Augustinian College, and then to students of the religious communities who founded the Washington Theological Coalition in 1968.
In 1971, Father Lazor was assigned to Saint Thomas Monastery and Villanova University, where he lived for the rest of his life. At the university he taught Sacred Scripture as associate professor in the Theology and Religious Studies Department, until his retirement in 2006. He was chaplain of the university's basketball and football teams and an ardent fan of all of the university's sports teams. He ministered on weekends throughout his priesthood, serving in parishes in Mahony City, PA and Phoenixville, PA.
Father Lazor was an example of dedication to prayer, the liturgy and religious life. He preached many retreats and days of recollection, and never turned down the opportunity to share with others his love for the Word of God. He was inspired by St. Jerome's dictum: "Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of Christ." He saw his ministry as a means to bring others closer to the Lord that he knew and served.
Father Lazor passed away on January 14, 2007, at Haverford Rehabilitation Center in Havertown, PA. A Mass of the Resurrection was celebrated January 18 at Saint Thomas of Villanova Church, after which he was buried at Calvary Cemetery in West Conshohocken, PA.