Father Warren D. Murrman, O.S.B., a member of the Saint Vincent Seminary faculty for 54 years, was presented with the Nova et Vetera Award for distinguished service to seminary education and to his students on Friday, May 12, by Chancellor Archabbot Martin de Porres Bartel, O.S.B., Rector Father Edward Mazich, O.S.B., and Academic Dean Father Patrick Cronauer, O.S.B.
“Over the course of fifty-four years of faithful service at Saint Vincent Seminary, Father Warren has helped to form several generations of Catholic priests for ministry in western Pennsylvania and beyond,” said Father Edward. “His devotion to the Gospel and to the Saint Vincent monastic community gives witness to the Benedictine motto, ‘Pray and Work’ as he continues to be a blessing for all those he counters in the course of his life.
“Weaving together the history of the Church and its faith in his teaching, and bringing it into dialogue with the concerns of the present day,” Father Edward added, “Father Warren truly exemplifies the Gospel spirit recognized by the Nova et Vetera (‘new and old’) award, which takes its name from the words of Jesus, ‘Every scribe who has been instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old’ (Matthew 13:52).”
“Father Warren’s exemplary and laudable service to the monastic community, to the seminary community, and to the Church has exhibited the highest standards of scholarship, professionalism, and commitment,” said Father Patrick. “His quiet and dignified teaching and modeling of what he taught for 54 years will continue to influence seminarians and priests well into the next generation of the Church.”
Father Warren entered the monastic community at Saint Vincent Archabbey at the age of 20, graduating from Saint Vincent Preparatory School in 1956, Saint Vincent College in 1961 and Saint Vincent Seminary in 1965. He professed solemn monastic vows in 1962 and was ordained a priest the same year he graduated from the Seminary. He went on to study in Germany, receiving a Doctor of Sacred Theology degree from Munich University, Munich, West Germany, in 1968, and a Diploma in Liturgical Science from the Liturgical Institute in Trier, West Germany, the following year.
Upon his return from Germany, he began teaching at Saint Vincent Seminary, while also serving in various other roles, such as chaplain (1969-1971) and academic dean (1970-1981). He retired from full-time teaching in 2018, and became a professor emeritus faculty member, continuing to teach as an adjunct faculty member. He taught concurrently at Saint Vincent College (1982-1990), has been a member of the monastic Council of Seniors (2008-2017), and has served several stints on the College Board of Directors.
He was a regular confessor for the Benedictine Sisters at Saint Emma Monastery, Greensburg, for more than 40 years. He assisted the Catholic Campus Ministry at Penn State University by providing a monthly Mass in Spanish (2001-2020).
Father Warren has at various times served the monastic community as assistant master of ceremonies, socius of novices, master of novices, and member of the Liturgy Committee of Saint Vincent Archabbey, and has been ridge procurator since 1970. He is a past member of the Liturgy Commission of the Diocese of Greensburg, He was a member of the Westmoreland County Agricultural Land Preservation Board (1998-2019). He holds memberships in the Catholic Theological Society of America, and the North American Academy of Liturgy.
Father Warren was a history editor of Saint Vincent Past to Present: A Visual Journey, published by Archabbey Publications in 2008. He was an editor and co-translator, together with Dr. Maria von Mickwitz, of the book Boniface Wimmer: Abbot of Saint Vincent in Pennsylvania, written by Father Oswald Moosmüller, O.S.B., and published in English in 2019 by Archabbey Publications. In 2022 Archabbey Publications privately published his history of the Archabbey’s endeavors on Chestnut Ridge, A History of ‘The Ridge’: The Saint Boniface Woodlands Property on Chestnut Ridge Owned by Saint Vincent Archabbey.
A Jeannette native, he was one of four children, including his sister Marguerite Altman, and the late William Murrman and Father Jonathan Murrman, O.S.B.