It is with regret that we announce the death on March 15th at nursing home De Zilverheuvel, Oosterbeek, The Netherlands, aged 92 of
Hubert (Huub) Stockmann
Mill Hill Missionary
May he rest in peace
Fr. Hubert, dearly known to his colleagues, friends and family members as Huub, was born on 10th July, 1931 in The Hague to Bernard Eduard Julius Stockmann and Antonia Frederika Sytofmeel. He was baptised on the same day of his birth and was named as Hubertus Dionysius. He had one brother and three sisters. The start of Huub’s formal education was delayed due to the war and it was in 1945 that he joined the minor seminary of the Mill Hill Missionaries in De Rooie Pannen in Tilburg. In 1949, he continued his secondary education in Aldenghoor in Haelen. Having still felt the call to missionary priesthood, Huub took up Philosophical studies at Mill Hill Philosophy College in Roosendaal from 1952 to 1954. Having successfully completed his philosophical studies, he was sent in 1954 to St. Joseph’s College in Mill Hill, London to continue his missionary formation. He became a Perpetual Member on 6th May, 1957. On 13th July 1958, he was ordained as a missionary priest at the College Chapel in Mill Hill by Cardinal William Godfrey of Westminster.
Right after his ordination, Huub received his missionary appointment to Cameroon. He arrived in the Diocese of Buea, Cameroon in November 1958, where he spent the next 56 years of his missionary life. Though his preference was always for pastoral work, he served as Society Representative in Cameroon from 1976 to 1982. He loved to be with the people – this was his first priority – not a Society or a diocesan meeting: he visited the sick in their homes and he went on week-long treks. However, at one point, Bishop Awa took Huub out of his parish and brought him to work at Bishop’s House, as Bursar and Secretary. Huub remained there for 17 years while living and working in the parish in Buea town. Huub started Mutengene Parish. Later, Paddy Harrington, RIP, took over from him. Paddy also succeeded Huub as Secretary in Bishop’s House. Huub spent the last 10 years in Limbe. He told the bishop he didn’t want to be Parish Priest anymore. So he went to Limbe as an assistant priest. He stayed in an outstation and lived very simply there, and ministered in the usual way: Masses, house visits, taking the Sacraments to the sick, offering material assistance, etc.
Huub shared to one of the General Councillors during a visit on how happy he was with the Cameroonians and MHMs of other nationalities now taking the missionary baton of the Society with much gusto. On the occasion of his Golden Jubilee in 2008, the General Council expressed their thanks to Huub for his missionary commitment with the following words: “whether you have been in the grasslands or the bush, in the Parish or the Office, you have shown great conscientiousness and commitment to the peoples and work entrusted to you.”
Following a fall and banging his head on a rock (caused by problems with his eyesight), Huub left his beloved Cameroon and retired to Vrijland in November 2014. Huub did not like taking any medical tablets. He grew accustomed to eating the simple food of the people in Cameroon, and was not used to eating meat. Lately, he needed more and more care. After a fall, he became bedridden and died on Wednesday morning, 15th March, 2023. His wish to be with the Lord had been fulfilled.
On Saturday, 18th March 2023, a Eucharistic celebration will be offered at 11 o’clock in Sint Jozefhuis, Johannahoeve 4, Oosterbeek, as a thanksgiving to God for the life of Huub and his tremendous contributions to the mission of the Church. Following the requiem rites, his remains will be laid to rest at Mill Hill cemetery in Oosterbeek. May the Lord whom he faithfully served all his life welcome Huub into the glory of Heaven.