Norbert Bufka was born and raised on a farm in northeastern Cleveland Township in Leelanau County bordering the long defunct village of Good Harbor.
Norbert attended Shetland School for kindergarten and then went to Leland Public School for nine years. In tenth grade he enrolled at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Grand Rapids from which he graduated in 1961 with two years of college. While there he studied classical and koine Greek among other subjects. He was assigned to Mt. St. Mary’s Seminary of the West in Norwood Ohio for philosophy studies in preparation for ordination to the Catholic priesthood. After one year there he transferred to Aquinas College in Grand Rapids from which he graduated with a BA in history.
After obtaining his teaching certificate, he taught high school English and American history at Catholic Central High School in Grand Rapids for one semester before enrolling in graduate school at Illinois State University from which he graduated with a MA in Latin. While there he met Carol Sue White whom he married in August 1966 in Quincy Illinoi.
He taught Latin and American history for seven years at Bad Axe High School before moving to Midland with his wife and daughter to become a salesman for a startup company which failed. He then went into insurance sales and financial services for over twenty years before changing careers again. He studied theology in a distance learning program from Loyola University New Orleans from which he received a master of Pastoral Studies degree. With this degree he obtained a position at Assumption Parish in Midland where he ministered for nine years before retiring in 2006.
The distance learning from Loyola (LIMEX) was a facilitated program with videotaped lectures from the on-campus professor of the course. Norbert was chosen to tbe the facilitator for the course after the initial facilitator resigned. Norbert was in the unique position of being a student and facilitator at the same time. It created some awkward moments. After a week of facilitator training at Loyola he facilitated another group of LIMEX students in Saginaw.
Norbert always loved writing and so began writing a monthly op-ed column for the Midland Daily News in 2003. After retirement, he self-published books. His three primary interests are religion, history, and current events.
Updated October 1, 2016.