Cyrin Maus '49

Cyrin Maus was the 1997 recipient of the Franciscan Alumni Association Humanitarian Award.

In 1945 at the age of 13, Frank Maus entered St. Francis Seminary.  Before entering the seminary, he did not smoke, cuss or drink.  Does this sound familiar?

His novitiate year of 1949-50 was spent at Mt. Airy, where he was given the name of Cyrin,  After four years of college at Duns Scotus from 1950 to 1954 and studies at Oldenburg from 1954 to 1958, Cy was ordained.

After ordination, Cy was sent to St. Leonard's for the "fifth year of theology or pastoral year".  Subsequently, stationed at Roger Bacon High School in Cincinnati in 1958-1959, he taught two classes of freshman Algebra and two classes of Sophomore Geometry and served as Assistant Dean of Students.

In the fall of 1959, Cy traveled to Rome to study theology, there he finished course work in three years and finished and defended his thesis in 1964.  In February 1964, he returned to St. Leonard's as Professor of Systematics.  He was chosen as dean and later president in 1966.  During this time Cy helped to rewrite the curriculum and start up the Consortium of Higher Education Religion Studies in the Greater Dayton area.  Cy also became active in the Centerville Area Open and Fair Housing effort and in other civil rights and Grape Boycott activities.

After resigning the presidency in 1970,  Cy moved to an experimental inner city house in 1970-1971 and left the order at the end of the school year.  In 1971- 1972 he worked in the administration of an experimental school for teenage boys with learning disabilities, and emotional disturbances.

In August 1972, Cy moved to Miami, Florida to begin a bi-lingual, bi-cultural education program for the Miccosukee Indians of Florida.  The program enabled them to write down their language for the first time.  Cy was also instrumental in establishing a high school. library, a bicultural health program, a tribal "bi-legal law enforcement program," and other tribal enterprises.  He also served as part of a national demonstration project on the concept of tribal "self-determination" that was established for tribes to operate federal programs in health, education, rights protection, etc. out of tribal government.  In addition, he served on the National Task Force on Standards for Indian Schools.

In 1980, Cy applied to the Carter Administration's "Tribal Managers' Corps" and was placed at the Lower Brule Sioux Reservation in central South Dakota, where he created a 5000-acre irrigation system that has been the mainstay of the tribe's economy ever since.  In addition, he set up financial management and personnel management programs.

In 1982, Cy was recruited by the St. Joseph's Indian School in nearby Chamberlain, South Dakota, where he was operations manager for fund raising efforts until 1989.  There he began the Lakota Development Council to help establish Indian businesses and market the arts and crafts of the many cottage industries on all the South Dakota reservations Cy also served on the Governor's Task Force on Tourism, Chamber of Commerce Board, a small Local venture capital company, a regional development company and an "Adjustment Training Center" (sheltered workshop for developmentally disabled adults).

Around Christmas, 1988, Fr. Nicholas Lohkamp contacted Cy to inviting him to apply to the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago as the director of development.  In June, 1989 he relocated to Chicago and, over the ensuing years was instrumental in raising enough capital to put the school on a much sounder financial base.  While in Chicago, he assisted his parish in several endeavors including director of the RCIA program, a shelter for the homeless, in catechetical programs, and in bringing the Eucharist to shut-ins.

Christmas, 1995, the tribal chairman at Lower Brule again asked Cy to reconsider returning to his reservation.  During the first part of 1996, his consulting included the areas of personnel systems and financial management. In October, 1996 Cy returned to Lower Brule and since November 4, 1996, has served as tribal manager (like a "city manager") for the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe.

On the personal side, Cy married Rita on October 10, 1971.  They along the way adopted three children.  Their Indian son joined the family during their days with the Miccosukee tribe, another son was adopted from an abortion clinic in St. Petersburg, Florida and their daughter is a full blooded Mexican who came to them from Catholic Charities in Miami.

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