Father Austin Luckenbill, C.P., St. Paul of the Cross Province (1884-1954)

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Born Richard Luckenbill on October 24, 1884 in Mahonoy City, Pennsylvania his mother was a Presbyterian. While a later convert herself. He was raised as a Presbyterian and became a Catholic. He wrote of this in an article “Between the Acts” Sign Magazine (April 1927). He was known on the Broadway stage as Richard Stoneleigh. His manager Charlie Doherty was instrumental in the conversion process. In 1909 he was received into the Catholic Church at the Paulist church in New York City. Mr. Doherty also introduced him to the Passionists in West Hoboken, New Jersey. Eventually Mr. Luckenbill entered the Passionists. In June 1912 he went to the novitiate in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and professed his vows on June 22, 1913. His religious name was Austin. He was ordained on May 16, 1918. After completing sacred eloquence under the direction of Father Alexis Cunneen, C.P., Father Luckenbill began his ministry as a preacher of parish missions and renewals. He was appointed director of sacred eloquence for several years. In 1932 he was elected rector of St. Gabriel’s Monastery, Brighton, Massachusetts. In the office for one year he was afflicted with a bout of depression. For the next twenty years this was a cross that he bore.