Father William Joseph Jablonske, at the age of 85 and a priest for 59 years, died August 13, 2020 in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin.
William J. Jablonske was born December 19, 1934, the son of Edward W. & Olivia M. (née Sywulka) Jablonske. He went to St. Stanislaus Elementary School in Stevens Point and Mary D. Bradford Junior High School, which was also known as Central State Lab School. He graduated from P.J. Jacobs High School in Stevens Point and studied two years at UW-Stevens Point before becoming a seminarian and beginning his priestly education and formation at St. John’s Seminary in Collegeville, MN, where he completed his college and theology studies and priestly formation. Bishop John Patrick Treacy ordained him a priest in Holy Cross Seminary Chapel in La Crosse on May 20, 1961.
Father Jablonske began his priestly ministry with assignments as an Assistant at the following parishes: St. John the Baptist in Marshfield while teaching part-time at Columbus High School, St. Patrick Parish in Onalaska, Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (St. Mary’s) Parish in Richland Center, St John the Baptist Parish in La Crosse while teaching full-time at Aquinas High School, St. Lawrence Parish in Wisconsin Rapids and an Instructor at Assumption High School, St. Stanislaus Parish in Stevens Point and the Assistant Director of the Newman Center. In the summer of 1968, he studied at the Goeth Institute in Murnau, Germany and in the autumn he was sent to Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. for graduate studies in theology. In the summer of 1969, he again studied theology at St. John’s Seminary in Collegeville and was then assigned as the Chaplain to the Newman Center in Menomonie. While there, he completed a Master of Arts degree that he had begun at Catholic University.
On July 1, 1971, Father Jablonske was appointed the Associate Pastor of the Newman Parish in Stevens Point. Three years later, he was assigned as the Coordinator of Program Development at the Center for Human Development at St. Mary’s College in Winona. From 1975 to 1981, he was appointed the Director of Catholic Charities in La Crosse with residence at St. Thomas More Parish. In late 1981, he was appointed Co-Pastor with Father Vaughn Brockman at St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Chippewa Falls. Three years later, he was then appointed the Pastor of St. Charles Borromeo Parish and remained there until 1995 when he was appointed Pastor of St. Agnes in Weston. He remained at St. Agnes Parish until he resigned for health reasons in February 1998. At the end of 2004, he was granted Senior Priest status. He lived in the town of Stone Lake, Wisconsin on Lac Courte Oreilles until he moved to Dove Healthcare-Wissota in Chippewa Falls about three years ago.
Father Jablonske had a wide range of interests that included obtaining a second class commercial radiotelephone license, speaking German, reading Spanish and French, organizing and training church choirs, having a private pilot’s license and an advanced class amateur radio license. He had a great interest in training announcers for a campus radio station at UW-Stevens Point and helping with some engineering at the radio station. He very much enjoyed the art and science of counseling.
Father Jablonske was preceded in death by his parents and his sister Judith A. Lizakowski. He is survived by his niece Suzy (Tom) Turbenson, and his nephew Mike Lizakowski.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. St. Charles Borromeo Church in Chippewa Falls on Saturday, August 22, 2020, at 11 a.m. The Most Reverend William Patrick Callahan will be the main celebrant. Father Frank Corradi will be the homilist. Visitation will begin at 9:30 a.m. on the day of the funeral. Burial will be at Guardian Angel Catholic Cemetery in Stevens Point, Wisconsin.
Chippewa Valley Cremation in Chippewa Falls is assisting with arrangements.