The “Pater-Michael-Hofmann-Stiftung” is a foundation dedicated to the support of the Canisianum. With the Foundation Board the Rector oversees this ecclesiastical foundation that has legal standing and is registered in the City of Innsbruck. The proceeds are used primarily to financially support according to need the priests who are studying in the Canisianum. Secondarily, income from this foundation is used for the maintenance and improvement of the Canisianum’s building and furnishings. Gifts and wills with dedicated purposes will be welcomed and honored.
Using an estate for a good purpose
Many of our alumni and benefactors dedicate a portion of their estate to a good cause. Within an inheritance there is the possibility of bequeathing specific sums, properties, or legacies which are only a part of the estate. Because the Canisianum is registered as a public corporation, like the Pater-Michael-Hofmann-Stiftung, it can be the recipient of bequests. All gifts in their entirety will be put to good use. At present, there is no inheritance tax in Austria. With a bequest to the Canisianum or the Hofmann-Foundation you make it possible not only now but in the future for priests from all over the world to further their studies and benefit their homelands. We guarantee that all bequests will be used exclusively for educational purposes, and without exception they will benefit our students. If you would like to leave something in your will to the Canisianum please contact the Rector. He will contact you however you prefer, by phone, letter, in person, etc.
Origins of the Foundation
The originator of this foundation was one of the great figures of priestly formation in the first half of the 20th century, Father Michael Hofmann SJ. He guided and shaped the Canisianum like no other in both peaceful and turbulent times.
Father Michael Hofmann was born in Kundl in Tirol in 1860. Having completed the gymnasium in Salzburg he went to Rome and studied philosophy and theology at the Germanicum from 1881 to 1888. There he was ordained a priest in 1887. Following Rome, he was appointed prefect in the seminary of Salzburg, and in 1892 appointed extraordinary professor of Church History and of Canon Law at the university there.
In 1895 he entered the Jesuits. Having completed that training he was appointed professor of Canon Law at the Catholic Theology Faculty at the University of Innsbruck. He taught there until 1918. During those years he was also the Regens of the Nikolai House on Sillgasse in Innsbruck.
Because of the increasing number of students in the Nikolai House plans for a larger seminary building began to be developed. The new seminary was named “Collegium Canisianum” and dedicated on October 15th, 1911. The rapid and successful completion of the new facility revealed Fr. Hofmann’s organizational talents.
Until 1914 the new seminary flourished. Then at the outbreak of WWI Father Hofmann turned one half of the Canisianum into a military hospital. At the time that was considered to be a major civic contribution. In May of 1915 he was further challenged when several campaigns drew Italy into the war, and the Germanicum was transferred from Rome to the Canisianum. Father Hofmann dedicated his energies to lessening the tensions among the various nationalities and building community among the seminarians.
In 1919 Father Hofmann went to Rome to lead the Germanicum for 6 years. He resumed the leadership of the Canisianum in 1925. After the National Socialists had closed the Canisianum on November 21st, 1938, he resettled the Canisianum with its remnant of students in Sitten, Switzerland. During the war priestly formation continued there under very meager conditions. In the summer of 1945 when the Canisianum was able to return to Innsbruck, because of his health Father Hofmann remained behind. In the following year, 1946, he died and was buried in Sitten.
Bank: Bank Austria
IBAN: AT79 1200 0518 8402 0000