Saint Meinrad Seminary & School of Theology

Formation and Education for the Life of the Church

Alumni Obituaries

Fr. Charles Knoll, OFM Cap.,

Fr. Charles Knoll, OFM Cap., 88, quietly passed away Sunday at Vincentian Home in Pittsburgh, where he lived for several years.

He was born to Francis and Mary Alice Black Knoll on Feb. 14, 1927, in Chicora. He was one of 12 children.

Father Charles was preceded in death by his parents; his brother, Francis; and his sister, Agnes Pfaff.

He is survived by his sisters, Mary Therese Geibel of Chicora, Monica Glynn of Baltimore, Ohio, Rita Barnhart of Rye, N.Y., Bernadette Huefner of Franklin, and Donna Neff of Butler, and his brothers, John of Butler, Thomas and Donald, both of Chicora, and Father Lester Knoll, OFM Cap, of Wickliffe, Ohio. In addition, his brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, and his many nieces and nephews and their children mourn Father Charles' passing.

Charles attended public grade school in Chicora and entered St. Fidelis Seminary High School in Herman in 1942. He entered the Capuchin Order in 1948 and professed his first vows July 14, 1949. Three years later, he made his final profession. Father Charles was ordained to the priesthood June 5, 1954, at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.

In addition to earning degrees in philosophy and theology, Father excelled in liturgical music. He was a Fulbright Scholar for musical studies in Germany in 1963. Later he pursued his studies in music at Catholic University of America, gaining a Master of Music degree in 1967. He continued postgraduate studies at the university until 1970. He was employed by J. S. Paluch and the World Library Co. in Chicago as a liturgical music specialist. He also attended Duquesne University to study music therapy.
His first priestly assignment was at St. Fidelis High School Seminary as instructor and prefect of discipline, a post he held for seven years. After his studies in Germany, Father Charles returned to serve as an assistant hospital chaplain and seminary professor in Pittsburgh.

In 1970, he was appointed director of liturgical music at Capuchin College in Washington, D.C., and St. Conrad Friary in Annapolis, Md.

From 1971 to 1979, he ministered in various Pittsburgh area parishes and simultaneously served in various capacities as a specialist in music and worship. He lived in Chicago from 1979 to 1984.

In 1984, he was named Health Care Minister for the SS. Peter and Paul parish in Cumberland, Md. In 1993, he served as chaplain at the Regency Hall Nursing Home and part-time chaplain at the Motherhouse of the Millvale Franciscan Sisters.
His last ministry assignment was at the St. Mary parish in Export. Father Charles was on the pastoral staff and was director of music ministry in the parish.

In 2001, Father Charles returned to Capuchin College in Washington, D.C., to begin his retirement, and in 2009 he moved to the St. Augustine Friary in Pittsburgh.
Father loved music and was an expert in liturgical music. Whether directing a high school choir, studying music in Germany, directing liturgical music for the Diocese of Pittsburgh, or directing parish music ministers, Father Charles was committed to excellence and quality.

Knoll - The body of Fr. Charles Knoll, who passed away Sunday, March 8, 2015, will be received Wednesday at St. Augustine Friary, 221 36th St., Pittsburgh.