Hundreds attend funeral for slain retired priest

Hundreds attend funeral for slain retired priest

COVINGTON, La. (WGNO) – Parishioners are remembering the life of retired Covington priest Father Otis Young, who was murdered a week ago, along with his assistant.

Hundreds filled St. Peter Catholic Church on Monday to mourn the loss of Father Otis

“It’s a very sad day and a day of great mourning,” Archbishop Gregory Aymond said.

Archbishop Aymond led the funeral mass. He says many people have asked him about the presence of Jesus when Father Otis died.

“Jesus was present when this was happening, and he was crying and crying and crying and saying to the person, “stop, stop,” but we have free will,” the archbishop said.

The Mass, however, also celebrated Father Otis’s life.

He worked as an accountant before getting ordained 21 years ago and served as pastor of St. Peter Parish for ten years before his retirement this past July.

Clergy say Father Otis brought people together and was a great reconciler.

“Otis’ fidelity to Christ and his church and the promises which he made at his ordination to the diaconate and to the priesthood were very easily observed in the matter of his life,” Father Daniel Brouillette, the pastor of St. Peter Parish, said during the Mass.

Father Otis had suffered a stroke but was determined to stay connected with the church which he called home.

One parishioner says she just saw Father Otis a couple of weeks ago during a church meeting.

“He was just so wonderful,” parishioner Gail Case said. “He and Ruth Prats were both there. He spoke, and he was just so inspirational to all of us even with all his illnesses. He was just a wonderful man.”

Parishioners say Father’s Otis’s generosity was unmatched.

“He was a person who was giving, and I don’t think he ever had a bad bone in his body,” Father Otis’s friend Lenny Bankston said. “He would do anything for anybody.”

The funeral for Prats, who was also murdered, will be on Saturday at 11 a.m. Visitation will take place Friday from 6 – 8 p.m. and Saturday from 9 – 11 a.m.

The man accused of their murders is currently being held at Angola.

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