Abt Raphael Molitor | 1906 – 1948
Abbot Raphael Molitor was born in 1873. He entered Beuron Archabbey in 1890, was professed in 1891 and ordained priest in 1897. From 1901 he published numerous scientific studies mainly about the history of music and ecclesiastical law.
In 1905, archabbot Plazidus Wolter from Beuron appointed him prior of Gerleve. One year later, he was ordained abbot. His heraldic motto was a quotation from saint Paul: Vince in bono – Conquer with good (Rom 12, 21). Abbot Raphael Molitor continued the building of the abbey, but was unable to finish it. The church was decorated in the taste of his time. He insisted on a serious interpretation of Gregorian chant, the enlargement of the library and an excellent formation of the monks.
He led the community successfully during World War I and during the complicated situation of the first German Republic (1918 to 1933). During the time when the abbey was suppressed by the Nazi-regime (1941 to 1945) he lived in southern Germany. Abbot Raphal Molitor died at Beuron on October 14th, 1948 and is buried in the church at Gerleve.