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† Fr. Valeer (Alberik) BRAECKMAN sscc (Flanders)

   Father Valeer was born in Waarschoot, March 31, 1921. He studied at the Father Damien Institute in Aarschot and entered the Congregation September 27, 1944. A year later, on September 28, 1945, he made his profession in Tremeloo and began philosophy and then theology in Zandhoven. Ordained a priest on August 6, 1950 he spent his pastoral year in Bilzen and then became a teacher in Coutrai in 1952. Two years later he left for Pontenure in Italy, the nation that would become his second homeland. There he did promotion for the Congregation and worked in the parish. In 1962 he left for Cognola (Trent) as director of the propagation of the faith. From there he traveled around with a display about Father Damien and the Congregation that he built himself. He went all over Italy.

   In June 1980 he was called to Rome to succeed Gaston Diels temporarily as General Treasurer and treasurer of the Generalate. His “temporary” assignment lasted five years and after that he continued in the Generalate as local econome. Hundreds of brothers who passed through the General House got to know him given the hundreds of times he shuttled back and forth to the airport for brothers, brothers’ families and friends.

   After returning to Belgium in 1998 he became a member of the community in Mariakerke (near Ghent). During recent years he suffered from Alzheimer’s disease and had to take up residence in a center where he could be cared for. On the morning of May 1, 2007 he went to the Lord.