We are the Priests of the Sacred Heart – Dehonians!
We live in community, are inspired by daily Eucharistic Adoration, and in a fragmented world we believe unity to be possible.
Our ministries are diverse, as are our members. Yet our goal is the same: to work with a common heart in service to God’s people, reflecting the love of Christ as experienced by our founder, Fr. Leo John Dehon.
Are you called to a life of prayer and service based in the love of the Sacred Heart? Are you called to religious life as a priest or brother?
Have a question, ready to learn more? Email our vocation director at: email@example.com, or call us at 800-609-5559.
Summer ministry in Houston
Two of our Dehonian students, Michael and Frater Paul, are based at Our Lady of Guadalupe Houston for their summer ministry assignment. There, they have assisted with pastoral ministries such as funerals and baptisms, as well as daily and weekend liturgies. Both have also been asked to lend a little elbow grease, helping with renovations in the parish office. Michael and Frater Paul are pictured above in front of Martha’s Kitchen, a soup kitchen near OLG. The students regularly volunteer at the ministry.
“I was hungry and you gave me food”
Sacred Heart Southern Missions’ summer food program in northern Mississippi got underway last week with two locations (Walls and Holly Springs). The daily program offers free, nutritious meals and snacks to children 0-18. Many of the children served by SHSM qualify for free or reduced cost lunches during the school year. Programs such as this are critical for families who struggle to provide two or more meals each day during the summer for themselves and their children. COVID-19 has compounded the situation, especially in the case of parents who have seen their wages cut or even lost their jobs.
Previously, the program was a sit-down dinner. This year, to maintain safety procedures, all meals and snacks are prepared to go. Several of our Dehonian students are pictured here working with the program: Fraters Huan and Hubert.
Celebrating the life of George Floyd
Frater Paul Hoang, SCJ (right), and Fr. Rafael Querobin, SCJ, were among the clergy and religious who took part in the George Floyd Candlelight Vigil June 8th at Jack Yates High School in Houston. Floyd was an alumnus of the school. “As Dehonians, we are called to be present in these moments, sharing our fraternity and solidarity,” said Fr. Rafael, who is an associate pastor at Our Lady of Guadalupe in Houston. Frater Paul is an SCJ seminarian at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology doing summer ministry at OLG.
Social justice one step at a time
“Earlier this year we were forced to reevaluate the way we live our lives when COVID-19 began to change what we had been accustomed to,” wrote Frater Henry Nguyen in a reflection about the many marches, peaceful protests and other events around the world calling attention to the need for justice, love and unity for all. “We began to live a new normal. It was a time of self-discovery as well as a time of isolation and confinement.
“Throughout the United States, visible signs of racism became apparent. First, it was toward those of Asian descent because of fear, fear of what people had heard about the virus and where it came from. More recently, there is an increase in awareness of racism toward African Americans. We see oppression, poverty, fear, and social injustice…
“We can only work toward this change together, one by one. I can only come to know someone by working beside them and among them… One of the reasons why I am where I am today, preparing to serve as an ordained Dehonian, is because of the lack of love I see in the world…
“One step at a time, one march at a time, in it together for social justice and the lives of those who are voiceless.”
Click here to read Frater Henry’s full reflection.
Summer ministry begins!
Our students at Sacred Heart Monastery have begun their summer ministry assignments in Mississippi and Texas. Frater Henry Nguyen, SCJ, and Jacob Smith (SCJ candidate) share news from their first week with Sacred Heart Southern Missions in northern Mississippi:
“On Wednesday, we were busy at the food pantry in Walls, helping to distribute goods to our clients,” said Frater Henry. “Due to COVID-19, protocols have changed. Clients call to let us know they are outside. We then pack the boxes to deliver to the client’s cars. Safety is a priority for both SHSM and for those whom we serve. Yesterday (Thursday), we helped to distribute boxes of food at Christ the King parish parking lot. Alongside us were parish staff and volunteers. When the rain came, we just kept moving, learning firsthand the difference that SHSM makes in the lives of the many people who come to seek help.”
“I was incredibly touched by the big hearts of the people here at Sacred Heart Southern Missions,” added Jacob Smith. “My soul is edified by their love for the work they do and their eagerness to serve those caught in poverty and sorrow. I hope to learn much during my service this summer.”
Originally, Frater Henry was to be in Chile, beginning an intercultural year of pastoral ministry and Spanish-immersion. But COVID-19 called for an adjustment to those plans. As he waits for the Chilean border to reopen he starts his pastoral year in Mississippi.
Come and See!
Fr. Quang is pictured here with Alejandro, one of the participants in February’s “Come and See,” an opportunity for young men discerning a vocation to religious life to literally “come and see” the Priests of the Sacred Heart (Dehonians). Are you discerning a call to religious life, to the priesthood? Contact our vocation director at firstname.lastname@example.org
Congratulations Frater Henry!
Congratulations to Frater Henry Nguyen, SCJ, who received the Institution of Acolyte during the January 7th Eucharist at the 2020 Provincial Conference. Frater Henry, 30, is a seminarian at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology; he professed his first vows in 2018.
Originally from Orange County, California, Frater Henry is in his fifth year of formation. Before entering candidacy, he earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from California State University, Monterey Bay.
In his third year of theology, Frater Henry did an intensive CPE (Clinical Pastoral Education) program in San Antonio with CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Health System last summer. “With this experience, my understanding of the theology of pain and suffering grew more and more as I made myself available in order to be present with the sick and dying and their families,” said Frater Henry. He is scheduled to do his cross-cultural year in Chile, starting midsummer.
Meet our students!
Each year we ask our students in formation to introduce themselves. This year’s group includes six candidates, six professed seminarians, and four novices. They are men from a wide variety of cultural, educational and work backgrounds. Yet they all speak of their shared call to the spirituality found in the Priests of the Sacred Heart (Dehonians) and a desire to serve others.
“Religious life is a call but also a choice,” wrote Frater Hubert Kodjovi Liassidji, who just professed his first vows this year. “It is one thing to have a call but another to choose to respond to it. I chose to answer God’s call and through formation with the SCJs, I discovered and continue to discover my true identity. I recognize Christ by serving and giving myself to the poor, and further, I become a disciple of Jesus Christ through the teachings of Fr. Dehon.”
CLICK HERE to read more about our novices and candidates in formation.
Candidates and seminarians for the Priests of the Sacred Heart live at Sacred Heart Monastery in Hales Corners (Franklin), WI. They do their theological studies at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology and undergraduate work at Marquette University in Milwaukee or Cardinal Stritch University . Our novitiate is located on a rural property approximately 15 miles south of Sacred Heart.
Are you discerning a vocation to the priesthood and/or religious life? Do you feel called to a life of community, prayer and ministry based in the love of the Sacred Heart? Contact our vocation director at email@example.com or call 1-800-609-5559.
Come and See!
Fr. Quang with participants at the September “Come and See,” an opportunity for young men discerning a vocation to religious life to literally “come and see” the Priests of the Sacred Heart (Dehonians). Are you discerning a call to religious life, to the priesthood? Contact our vocation director at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800-609-5559
Four new novices!
On Wednesday, August 14, Thien Nguyen, Thuan Nguyen, Truc Van Tran and Hung Pham began their novitiate year in preparation for first vows with the Priests of the Sacred Heart. Fr. Ed Kilianski, SCJ, provincial superior, received the new novices during a ceremony in the novitiate chapel. Fr. Byron Haaland, SCJ, is novice master, and Fr. Andrzej Sudol, SCJ, is associate novice master. Click here to read more about them. Click here to view photos from the ceremony.
Three receive Ministry of Lector from Fr. General
Fr. Carlos Luis Suarez Codorniú, SCJ, superior general, spent much of last week in the US Province, primarily for meetings in the Milwaukee (Hales Corners) area. During his visit, he joined the Novitiate Community for prayer and dinner on Tuesday, and on Thursday, May 2, he conferred the Ministry of Lector on three of our Dehonian seminarians: Fraters Henry Nguyen, Phong Paul Hoang and Huan Duy Pham.
“Enjoy the Word and share the Word,” said Fr. Carlos Luis to the three seminarians, who are students at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology. Fraters Henry and Paul are members of the US Province and Frater Huan is from the Vietnamese District. St. Joseph’s Chapel was filled with members of the Sacred Heart Monastery community and several guests from SHSST.
“I give thanks to God for my vocation with the SCJs. I am grateful to the community for giving me an education, the gift of community, valuable ministry experiences, personal growth, and most importantly, a love for the Heart of Jesus,” said Frater Paul, 26, when professing his vows last year.
Frater Henry, 30, was Frater Paul’s novitiate classmate. About his own vocation, he said that it “calls me to do love in all things. By being ‘Henry of the Heart of Jesus,’ I feel that it is my duty to respond to the lack of God’s love in the world, by spreading God’s love to where people need it most. By becoming an SCJ, I take on a social responsibility, a tug to be present with others.”
Frater Huan, 33, did his initial formation in the Philippines and professed his first vows in 2017. “What was significant in helping me to make my decision to join the Priests of the Sacred Heart was the pierced Heart of Jesus from which I saw a true source of love, hope, and fulfillment of my life,” he said. “Dehonians, in their own charismatic way, essentially attracted and impacted me with their motto of being ‘Prophets of Love and Servants of Reconciliation.’”