Celebrating religious life!
Mid-August is traditionally a time in which members of the Priests of the Sacred Heart commemorate and honor their life as religious in community. Those in temporary vows make their renewals, novices make their first professions, and SCJs who note a jubilee with the community are celebrated by their fellow religious.
On Friday, August 12, Fraters Paul Phong Hoang, Thuan Nguyen and Truc Tran renewed their vows (Hung Pham did his vow renewal on August 7 in Houston). They are pictured above with Fr. Vien Nguyen, SCJ. An SCJ remains in temporary vows generally three to four years before making his perpetual profession. All of the temporarily professed are seminarians at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology.
Tonight, Jonathan Nguyen-Vuong, Jacob Smith and Michael Wodarczyk will make their first professions, following a year in Novitiate.
When asked what his favorite part of the Novitiate year was, Jonathan simply said “EVERYTHING!”
“I loved the community life with the other two novices and the two novice directors, the 13-acre land of plants and trees, the house and the location of where it resides in Franksville, WI, the beautiful chapel, the bonfire pit, the labyrinth and walking pathways, Amy our chef, Jarle the Novitiate dog, the garden, and the chickens and other animals that wander by the Novitiate house every day,” said Jonathan. “But most important was the fun, happiness, and humor that was a part of the Novitiate year.”
Click here or on the image below to hear Jonathan speak about his vocation to religious life.
All three of our novices talked about their vocation stories in videos for the province YouTube channel. If you missed Jacob’s, published last week, click here.
Hear Michael’s vocation story by clicking here or on the image below.
Click here to view the LIVESTREAM of the First Professions Ceremony. It will begin today, August 15, at 4:30 p.m. (central).
Photos will be posted this evening on the province Facebook page.
Tomorrow night, August 16, the US Province commemorates the 70, 60, 50, 40 and 25-year anniversaries of First Professions of 14 SCJs. They include: Fr. Bernie Rosinski (70 years); Fr. Thomas Cassidy, Fr. Mark Fortner, Fr. Patrick Lloyd and Fr. Steve Pujdak (60 years); Fr. James Brackin, Fr. Jack Kurps, Dn. David Nagel and Fr. James Schifano (50 years); Fr. Stephen Huffstetter (40 years); and Br. Duane Lemke, Fr. Vien Nguyen, Fr. David Szatkowski and Fr. Chuck Wonch (25 years).
Click here to view the LIVESTREAM of the Jubilee Celebration tomorrow, August 16, at 4:30 p.m..
Photos will be posted to Facebook soon after the ceremony.
US Province Assembly
Before the Jubilee Celebrations, tomorrow, August 16, the province will gather for a one-day assembly. The morning will feature a presentation by Sr. Dianne Bergant, CSA, on “The Mercy of God.” Sr. Dianne, a Sister of St. Agnes of Fond du Lac, WI, served on the faculty of Catholic Theological Union from 1978 to 2014. She was President of the Catholic Biblical Association of America (2000-2001) and was the Rev. Robert J. Randall Distinguished Professor of Christian Culture, Providence College, Providence, RI (2009-2010). Click here to read more about Sr. Dianne on the CTU website.
Sr. Dianne’s presentation will be livestreamed, beginning at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow. Click here to access the LIVESTREAM.
Tomorrow afternoon, SCJs will take part in a “spiritual walk” in honor of Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ, who has been missing since July 21. Some people will be a part of an actual “walk,” searching for clues in an effort to find Fr. Anthony. SCJs will be invited during their morning session to sign-up for a search group; each small group will have a leader and a driver. All will begin from the last known location of Fr. Anthony: the front entrance at Sacred Heart at Monastery Lake. The SCJs will be in areas recommended by the Franklin Police Department.
While the walk/search is taking place, other SCJs will be holding an Adoration service at Good Shepherd Chapel at SHML. Details of the afternoon will be further discussed with participants at the morning session of the assembly.
PICTURED ABOVE: The last time that the province gathered in assembly was for the Province Elections in January. There have already been a few changes in the province since the group photo was taken: there are SCJs who are no longer with us, international SCJs who have returned to their home countries, a member of the US Province who was able to return to a mission entity after two years of pandemic travel restrictions, and a frater who was still months away from his ordination to the diaconate.
The Province Assembly begins with prayer and an introduction to the day at 9:45 a.m. in the Provincial Conference Center. The full schedule is as follows:
9:45 a.m. – Opening prayer and introduction
10:00 a.m. – Presentation on “The Mercy of God”
11:00 a.m. – Break
11:15-11:45 a.m. – Small and large group sharing
12:45-2:15 p.m. – Counselor available for those who would like assistance in processing their thoughts regarding Fr. Anthony’s disappearance.
1:30-3:00 p.m. – “Spiritual Walk,” a search for clues regarding Fr. Anthony’s disappearance.
2:00-3:00 p.m. – Adoration at SHML
4:30 p.m. – Jubilee celebration at SHSST
† Br. Michel Poirier, a member of the Franco-European Province, died on August 12, the anniversary of Fr. Leo John Dehon’s death. At 107, Br. Michel was the eldest SCJ in the world; he professed his first vows in 1936. Click here to read a brief profile of Br. Michel, posted on the congregational website in June.
† Fr. José García Ercille, a member of the Venezuelan Region, died on August 11. He was born in 1932, professed in 1949 and ordained in 1957.
Fridge Notes holidays
There will be no Fridge Notes on Monday, August 22. The next issue will be published on August 29. The following week, September 5, is Labor Day. The Provincial Offices will be closed, and there will be no Fridge Notes published. The publication will return to its regular weekly schedule on September 12.
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Congratulations ECS grads!
On August 5, the English and Cultural Studies Program (ECSP) at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology concluded its Summer Session with a Multicultural Mass featuring the music and languages of many of the cultures represented by the students. Following Mass, Fr. Yvon Sheehy, SCJ, presented the ECSP graduates with their certificates. They are pictured below.
Click on either of the links to view a video of the celebrations: