July 19, 2010

Thankful for Fr. Dehon

Kelly Kontney

Each year St. Martin of Tours parish in Franklin, Wis., has an essay contest for its eighth graders. The theme of the essay?  The founder of the Priests of the Sacred Heart, Fr. Leo John Dehon. The winner receives $100 toward his or her high school education.

This year’s winner was Kelli Kontney.

“Thank you Father Dehon,” she wrote. “I am grateful for the treasure you have given me in my school, my faith, and my friends. Your devotion to children and their faith-filled education has paid off for me. You have given influence to so many people who are actively involved in my everyday life. I am so thankful to be part of your plan. I hope I can carry what my priests and teachers have taught me in MY plan for the future,  and I hope your influence on me can rub off to others as I live my life of faith.”

Click here to read her full essay.

Provincial’s time

Fr. Cassidy is in the office much of this week.  Next week he will take part in the provincial assembly July 26-27.

Province assembly

As noted above, the province assembly will be at the Provincialate Conference Center next Monday and Tuesday (July 26-27).  The first session will begin at 1:15 p.m. on Monday.  More information will be emailed to participants this week.

If you are planning to attend the assembly and did not inform Br. Frank Presto by last Friday please let Mary Gorski know.  Br. Frank is out of town this week and will not be able to assist you.  Participants are asked to make their own lodging arrangements.  If you plan to stay at Sacred Heart Monastery please call 414-425-8300, ext. 0.  The operator can assist you.

Keep in prayer

We received a call at the Provincialate last week from Bob Smits, the husband of Diane Smits.  Diane had been administrative assistant of the province vocation office for many years.  She has been dealing with cancer since her retirement and during recent years has received home hospice care.  Bob called to let SCJs know that Diane is in the latter stages of her illness.

An LPN is at the house full time and she is receiving medication primarily to help her be comfortable.  Visitors are welcome (please call Bob before stopping) but note that Diane may not be aware of the visitor’s presence.

Please remember

Joan Meyer, a retired member of the library staff at Sacred Heart School of Theology, died on July 13.  She was 82.

Fr. Lorenzo Pedroncelli of the North Italian Province died July 15.  He was born in 1919, professed in 1937 and ordained in 1944.

Fr. Jésus Manuel Valbuena, an alumnus of SHST's ESL program, lays hands upon one of the new Indian priests. Fr. Jésus is a member of the Indian formation team.

Young district grows quickly to serve worldwide congregation

On July 12, four members of the Indian District were ordained to the priesthood: Abraham Lazar, Dharmaraj Akula, Michael Augustine and Sunderaj Antony Mallavarapu. The ordination was held at the cathedral in Eluru Diocese.  Fr. Agustinus Guntoro (a member of the Indian District) writes that over 800 people attended the celebration, including 50 priests.

“In his homily Bishop Prakash spoke of the challenge of being a priest nowadays,” wrote Fr. Agustinus.  It’s a great challenge, continued Fr. Agustinus about the the bishop’s words, but in that challenge it is important to never forget the reason for their priesthood, “be a servant of God.”

These four men bring the total of Indian SCJ priests to 15.  Prepared by an international formation team, the Indian students and newly ordained truly have an international sense of the Priests of the Sacred Heart. Indian SCJs in formation study and do ministry in SCJ locations around the world including Brazil, Argentina, Indonesia, the Philippines, Rome, South Africa and Ireland.

The Indian District’s first missionary will soon leave for South Africa where an Indian SCJ is already a theology student in the international formation program in Pietermaritzburg.  Two more Indian students will join the program soon.

Several members of the U.S. Province have assisted with the formation program in India including Frs. Charlie Bisgrove, PJ McGuire, Michael van der Peet, Wayne Jenkins and Rick DiLeo.  Br. Lenny Zaworski continues to serve in the district.  Also, Fr. Tom Fix, an American SCJ who is now a member of the Indonesian Province, currently works with the Indian formation program.

Fr. Fix sent the information about the ordinations, as well as links to photos from it.  To view the photos click here.

Notre Dame football

Br. Frank Presto notes that there are a limited name of Notre Dame football tickets still available:  two tickets for the October 30 game against Tulsa and four tickets for the November 13 game against Utah.

Contact Br. Frank Presto at the Provincialate if you are interested.

Mausoleum work

If you visit the province mausoleum you may notice that a few of the name stones on the back wall are either missing or damaged.  There were structural problems with the recently placed stones that are now being addressed.  It is anticipated that the stones will be replaced by early autumn.

New pastor named for Raymondville

The SCJs will be returning ministry at Our Lady of Guadalupe, Raymondville, to the Diocese of Brownsville early next year.  The parish also includes several missions.  Bishop Daniel Flores announced that Fr. George Kerketta will become pastor of the parish as of February 2, 2011.  He will succeed Fr. Richard MacDonald.

Congrats to Fr. Tony!

In conjunction with its 25th anniversary celebration, SET Ministry, Inc., will honor Fr. Tony Russo for his service to the organization, as well as the involvement of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.  To learn more about SET, click here to visit its website.

Happy anniversary!

Monsignor Bernie Galic, a former member of the community, celebrates his 40th anniversary of priesthood on August 29 at Holy Family Church in South Bend, Ind.