OBITUARY FOR MSGR. WALTER F. MINHOTO
September 5, 1938 – February 18, 2019
Monsignor Walter F. Minhoto completed his earthly mission on earth on February 18, 2019, after faithfully serving nearly 55 years as a Roman Catholic priest of the Diocese of Fresno.
Walter Francis Minhoto was born September 5, 1938 in Watsonville, California. He was the only son of the late Frank Minhoto and Mary Fontes. His early years were spent in San Juan Bautista where he attended Olympia Elementary School. After graduating from Bellarmine College Prep in San Jose, California, he began his seminary studies at St. Joseph College, Mountain View, California. He completed his seminary formation at St. John’s Seminary, Camarillo, California and was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Fresno on April 30, 1964. He would later go on to do post-graduate studies at the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium.
Msgr. Minhoto served in various parish assignments throughout his many years of priestly ministry, including: St. Peter’s Church, Lemoore; Shrine of St. Therese, Sacred Heart, St. Paul Newman Center, St. John’s Cathedral and St. Helen’s in Fresno; Our Lady of Mercy and Sacred Heart, Merced; St. Aloysius, Tulare; and Holy Rosary, Hilmar. In addition to parish ministry, he served as chaplain at St. Agnes Medical Center for a time and was chaplain and religion teacher at Garces Catholic High School, Bakersfield. His desire to share the love of Christ with everyone led him to serve in various ministries throughout his priesthood. He served scores of youth at Camp Santa Teresita and youth retreats; he supported married couples through the Teams of Our Lady, helped prepare adult converts through the RCIA process and helped found and support the Matthew 25 outreach to the incarcerated in Fresno. Even in his later years of retirement, he continued to be a spiritual counselor to the many people who sought his wisdom and guidance.
In addition to his priestly ministry, Msgr. Minhoto took time to enjoy the beautiful things the Lord gives us in this life. He had a life-long love for movies, the opera and the philharmonic. He had the opportunities to travel and see much of the world; though his greatest love was for San Francisco and the Monterey Bay. He followed the culinary scene and could usually recommend the best restaurant to visit in a particular city. He enjoyed being surrounded by living plants and had great success with orchids and irises. However, most of all he loved caring for people. Walter was a person for detail. On your birthday, anniversary or other special occasion you could expect a note or a phone call and a bouquet of beautiful flowers (and he knew your favorite) to arrive at your door. He was generous to a fault and always ready to assist a friend in need. He maintained a stream of correspondence with friends, new and old, even to the final weeks of his life. Msgr. Minhoto will be remembered as a faithful and devoted priest who served the Lord and his people with genuine love.
A viewing and visitation will be held on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 from 4:00 – 6:00pm at the Shrine of St. Therese, 1444 N. Wishon Ave. Fresno. The Vigil/Rosary will follow at the church at 6:30pm. The funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:00am on Thursday, February 28, 2019 at St. John’s Cathedral, 2814 Mariposa St., Fresno. Interment will follow the Mass at St. Peter’s Catholic Cemetery, Fresno.
In lieu of flowers, friends may make a donation in memory of Msgr. Minhoto to The Nazareth House, 2121 N. First St., Fresno, CA. 93703 or their favorite charity.
The Nazareth House
2121 North 1st Street, Fresno CA 93703