Father Theodore J. Gerken, 86, a former pastor of Resurrection Church in Germantown, died on Dec. 2. He was born Aug. 8, 1933 in Whitney Point, the son of the late Jack and Esther Gerken.

Father Gerken entered St. Columban Seminary in September of 1946 and was ordained into the priesthood on Dec. 21, 1957. He continued his studies and received a master’s degree in journalism with a minor in American Literature from Marquette University. Father Gerken then spent time doing mission promotion at Columban Headquarters in Omaha, Neb.; served as assistant director for the Spiritual Year for Seminarians; and returned back to Omaha to serve as Columban director for News and Mission Promotion.

From 1969-77, Father Gerken was a pastor in Nausori, Fiji Islands, and taught English at Xavier College in Ba, Fiji. Upon returning to the United States in 1978, he served at parishes in Vestal, Liverpool, Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Ballston Spa. He received his Incardination into the Albany Catholic Diocese in 1987, and was pastor of Resurrection Church in Germantown from 1988 until his retirement in 2007. 

Father Gerken was predeceased by five sisters. He is survived by a brother, David Gerken of Buffalo, and several nieces and nephews.  Father Gerken was an avid model train enthusiast, coin and stamp collector, and enjoyed boating on the Hudson River. 

A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Dec. 10 at St. Mary’s Church in Hudson.