Brother Franz Freisinger, SVD

Brother Franz Freisinger, SVD was born on May 4, 1935 in Attendortberg, Austria, from a farmer family. He has two brothers and two sisters. Apart from working in the farm, his father was also interested in construction, and built his own home.

From a missionary magazine, Bro Franz got to know the SVD working in China and elsewhere. He was deeply moved by the dedication of those missionaries preaching the gospel in several difficult situations, and slowly was aware of his own vocation. After a period of discernment, he joined the SVD in St. Gabriel in Vienna to live his vocation as a brother. He was filled with great joy as if had been given a great treasure. After two years of working in Vienna, he went to Nemi, Rome, to take part in construction course. After one year of English in Ireland, he professed his final vows and was assigned to Taiwan.

After only a short time of learning Chinese Mandarin, he was assigned to Fu Jen University to supervise the construction works of the university. The most difficult thing for him was the fact that he had to work even on Sundays and feast days. He spent most of his holidays to learn Chinese to help better communication with his co-workers.

He wholeheartedly dedicated his life for the mission work in Taiwan, particularly for Fu Jen University. He did heavy works daily: supervising new constructions, repairing roofs and walls, or other maintenance works. His missionary zeal was mostly shown through his passionate and humble works, but not through beautiful words. He paid good care to his workers, patiently guided them, and strife for their welfare. He paid special attention to the poor, and loved animals especially dogs in Fu Jen campus. But he kept very simple life style.

Brother Franz was talented in music, loved planting flowers, decorating the chapel and the stairs. He kept the grass in the university tidy. He was very fervent and strong in his faith. Prayer was the source of his strength. His life has been taken as an example by many of his co-workers, students and even professors in the university. Many of his co-workers did not realize that Brother Franz was sick for quite sometimes. He kept his illness for himself. And on February 5, 2006 wile working in workshop, he got nose bleeding. He rushed to his room and died soon afterwards.