Weekly news: November 11, 2019

International Conference on Sacred Heart Devotion

A two-day conference on Sacred Heart devotion was held November 8-9 at Villa Aurelia (next to the Generalate) in Rome. The conference was hosted by the Priests of the Sacred Heart (via the Centro Studi Dehoniani) in conjunction with several partners, including the Pontifical Council for Culture and the University of Lucerne (PH Luzern).

Speakers from France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, the United States, Canada and Indonesia focused on iconography, memory, emotion and body in the language, imagery and rituals of the Sacred Heart.

Pictured above is Fr. Stefan Tertünte, SCJ, director of the Centro Studi Dehoniani, with Cardinal José Tolentino Mendonca (Vatican archivist and librarian) and Dr. Franziska Metzger of the University of Lucerne. Both were presenters at the conference. Fr. Stefan will be one of the panelists at Wednesday’s Dehon Lecture at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology.

Click here or on the image below to view a short video of Fr. Albertus Joni, an Indonesia SCJ doing graduate studies in the United States, talking about his impression of the conference.

Click here or on the image below to view a video of Fr. John van den Hengel, SCJ, sharing his views of the gathering. Fr. John was one of the final speakers of the conference; his presentation theme: “Léon Dehon’s Sacred Heart in light of the figure of Wisdom”

More photos, videos and other information about the conference are on DehoniansWorldwide (general Facebook page) and the general website.

November is a month filled with meetings and conferences in Rome. Before the Sacred Heart conference was the workshop for new major superiors. And starting today is the meeting of all the major superiors with the general administration.

“The meeting opened with a very good reflection by Fr. Steve [Huffstetter],” wrote Fr. Ed Kilianski, SCJ, who arrived in Rome just in time to attend the Sacred Heart conference. “We will, of course, be going through the programmatic letter of the administration. Overall there is a good spirit among the superiors. As I said to the group this morning, it is good for us to be here together!”

The general administration plans to post information from the meeting on the general Facebook page and website (links above). Fr. Ed will be in Rome until November 16.

Keep in prayer

Fr. Bob Naglich, SCJ, had a liver and kidney transplant yesterday. He is recovering at Froedtert Hospital in Milwaukee. Please keep him in prayer.

Fr. Anthony blesses the site of the new center

Continuing Dehonian commitment to Cheyenne River Reservation

Although the province no longer has a pastoral presence on the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation in South Dakota, Dehonians continue their commitment to the people of the reservation through the Sacred Heart Center in Eagle Butte. In its 37th year, the center provides multiple social services, including an emergency shelter for domestic violence and sexual assault victims and a child services program which operates a state licensed group home for youth aged 10-17.

“It is interesting to note that our group home is the only state licensed group home facility located within the boundaries of a reservation in South Dakota,” said Greg Fisher, executive director of the center.

On October 29, the Sacred Heart Center had a groundbreaking ceremony for a new Family Violence Women’s Safe Shelter. “Unfortunately, the number of victims of domestic violence and sexual assault is not declining in our service area,” said Greg. “A new building is critical as a part of the process to assist victims.”

The Priests of the Sacred Heart are no longer on the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation but the Dehonian commitment to its people continues.

Click here to read more on the province website.

Please remember

Fr. Vittorino Biasiolli of the North Italian Province died on November 4. He was born in 1933, professed in 1951 and ordained in 1960.

Fr. Rudolphus Raúl Hogervorst of the Chilean Province, died on November 4. He was born in 1937, professed in 1959 and ordained in 1964.

Fr. Jerzy Welna of the Polish Province died on October 31. He was born in 1953, professed in 1973 and ordained in 1979.

Veterans Day

Today, November 11, is commemorated as Veterans Day in the United States. Let us give prayers of thanks for the service and commitment of our many men and women who have served in the armed forces, as well as for the sacrifices of their families. May their efforts bring us closer to the ultimate goal of peace throughout our world. Amen.

Reflections on the Holocaust

On Sunday, November 17, the Lux Center for Catholic-Jewish Studies will host a lecture by Dr. Tim Crain, former director of the National Center for Holocaust Education and assistant professor of History at Seton Hill University in Pennsylvania. His topic: “Reflections on the Holocaust: Franklin Roosevelt, Immigration and the Jews.” The presentation begins at 3:00 p.m. at SHSST. Admission is free, but RSVP if you plan to attend.

Click here for more information and to RSVP.

Dehon Lecture on Wednesday

A reminder that the next Dehon Lecture is this Wednesday, November 13, at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology. Austen Ivereigh is the featured speaker. His topic: “Wounded Shepherd: the Sacred Heart and the Reform of Pope Francis.” A journalist and the author of The Great Reformer, a biography of Pope Francis, Ivereigh was the opening presenter at last year’s SHSST symposium “Discovering Pope Francis.”

The lecture will begin at 9:00 a.m., Eucharist will be at 11:15 a.m. and the Response Panel will begin at 1:00 p.m. Respondents include Fr. Stefan Tertünte, SCJ (director of the Centro Studi Dehoniani in Rome), Kurt Martens (Catholic University of America) and Peter Casarella (University of Notre Dame). The afternoon session ends by 4:00 p.m.

Click here for more information.


Congratulations to Br. Meghanand (Megha) Bandanadham, SCJ, who successfully completed the oral portion of the comprehensive exam for the Master of Arts degree at SHSST on October 31! A member of the Indian District, he will soon be returning to India to make his final vows.

Mother Frances Cabrini, patron saint of immigrants and refugees

Wednesday, November 13, is the feast day of Mother Frances Cabrini, MSC, patron saint of immigrants and migrants.

In a new world, a new culture, without contacts, not knowing the language, Mother Cabrini began her ministry to the migrant community in New York City. She and her community established 67 institutions dedicated to caring for the poor. In 1946, Mother Cabrini was the first US citizen to be canonized.

Members of the North American Migration Committee write: “To celebrate not only the life of this remarkable woman and of her congregation, but also to celebrate our own prayer, presence and solidarity with immigrants and refugees, we offer you a prayer.” The prayer is below:

Prayer for Immigrants and Refugees

Jesus, together with Mary and Joseph, you were forced to flee the persecution of Herod.
You continue to unite yourself with all those forced to flee their homes and live in exile.
Today, we entrust to your loving care all women, children and men
who live as migrants and refugees.

Grant us the grace to welcome them with Dehonian HOSPITALITY,
so that these sisters and brothers of ours
may experience SOLIDARITY and HOPE on their journey.

in the migrant who labors to bring food to our tables,
in the refugee fleeing from violent conflict, persecution, and famine,
in the woman and child who are victims of human trafficking,
in the asylum seeker imprisoned for fleeing without documents.

May all those who are far from their place of birth
find in us a home where all are welcomed.
With your grace, may we “involve ourselves without reserve
for a coming of a new humanity in Jesus Christ.” (CsT. #38).
United with Mother Cabrini, we ask this in your name, Jesus. Amen.

Resources: Becoming Neighbours, Education for Justice, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Photo by Antoine Merour on Unsplash

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