Fr. Mario Pedi, O.S.B.
Father Mario Pedi, O.S.B., of Marmion Abbey died peacefully at 8:10 am on Friday, August28 at McAuley Manor. He was 88 years old.
Fr. Mario was ordained a Benedictine Monk in 1957 and always considered the Marmion Abbey in Aurora, Il, his ‘home’. After stints as a teacher and then principal at the adjacent Marmion Military Academy, and a few years living and teaching in New York City, he came to Notre Dame as rector of St. Ed’s in 1976 and remained for a decade. Fr Mario was a larger-than-life character and the guys in the dorm loved him. His room was like a menagerie with a big tropical fish tank and a succession of exotic birds – parrots and cockatoos – all named ‘Irish’. They were able to learn and repeat words (the birds, not the fish), and the guys in the dorm taught them to say things like “Hello”, “Go Irish!”, and a few other choice phrases that were, at times, cause for embarrassment to the good padre. He brought his love for the theatre with him to StEds: every year Fr Mario directed a play starring the men of the dorm performed on stage in Washington Hall to sold-out crowds. The proceeds went to Fr. Mario’s growing collection of exotic animals and birds. Just kidding. His vows of poverty somehow excluded electronics as well, and he had the best stereo system in the dorm, the biggest TV most of us had ever seen, and a (then) cutting-edge VCR player. Fr. Mario’s door was always open, and on any given night you’d see bodies draped across every piece of furniture and every square inch of floor as he showed the latest movies – and not just the safe ones. Our only complaint was that he’d always fast-forward through the ‘good parts’. He also packed ‘em in at Sunday night mass in the chapel, and his weeknight masses were always well attended.
He went on to be pastor at Annunciation Parish in Aurora, IL, a job that he loved for over twenty years. In retirement at the abbey, he taught and was librarian at Marmion and remained active administering sacraments and serving those in need in the community
Fr. Mario greeted so many of us at the front door of St Ed’s on our first day at Notre Dame. He was our friend, surrogate parent, spiritual director, and hall mascot. He went on to marry many of us, baptize our kids, bury our loved ones and help us through life crises. Now that he’s in heaven, I hope that he greets us there at the front door on our first day, maybe with a parrot on his shoulder. Uttering choice phrases.Funeral arrangements for Fr. Mario:
Father Mario’s body will be received by his monastic community and family on Tuesday, September 1, at 4:00 P.M. Visitation will be from 4:00 P.M. until 9:00 P.M. in the Abbey Church at 850 Butterfield Road, Aurora.