Weekly News: August 25, 2014

Fr. Hendrik teaches a team-building game that can be used during youth gatherings.
Fr. Hendrik teaches a team-building game that can be used during youth gatherings.

“I heard you!”

At the U.S. Provincial Chapter in July, the youngest members of the province –– those in temporary vows –– emphasized the need to be present to young people.

“We need to be visible, we need to be with young people if we are going to share the Dehonian charism with them,” they said in their small group report. “We can’t wait for them to come to us.”

Frater Joseph Vu has a good laugh during one of the youth games.
Frater Joseph Vu has a good laugh during one of the youth games.

Energized by what he heard, Fr. Christianus Hendrik, a member of the Provincial Council, felt called to respond to them “and get something started,” he said.

“I heard your voice loud and clear,” he told young SCJs. “I was impressed by what you said and was inspired.”

Fr. Hendrik’s response? A day of reflection and training as a starting point for Dehonian youth ministry in the U.S. Province.

Seven of the youngest members of the province, including four in formation, came to the Provincial Conference Center on August 21 to reflect on the Dehonian charism, learn about youth ministry in other areas of the congregation, and take part in games and team-building exercises appropriate for use with young people.

“Together, we can start something,” said Fr. Hendrik. “We might make mistakes, we might even go down the wrong path sometimes, but mistakes can be fixed, programs can be revised. What is important is that we just get started, that we move from talking to doing.”

Fr. Hendrik’s hope is that a team can be developed for youth ministry. “As a team, we can support each other,” he said.

Click here to read more about the youth ministry day.

Click here to view a photo album from it.

Next Fridge Notes

Because of the Labor Day holiday we are going to publish a single issue of Fridge Notes for the weeks of September 1 and 8. That issue will be posted on the website and sent to email subscribers on Thursday, September 4.

Want to add a name to the email subscription list? Click here.

And don’t forget to check the province Facebook page in-between issues of the Fridge Notes for the latest news items.

Thank you

Fr. John (right) wishes Justin good luck prior to Justin's first profession ceremony last week.
Fr. John (right) wishes Justin good luck prior to Justin’s first profession ceremony last week.

As we noted last week, Fr. John Czyzynski is retiring after serving as novice master to his final novice, Frater Justin Krenke.

A few weeks before Justin’s profession, he and Frater Juancho Castañeda Rojas invited SCJs in the province to write a few words on the occasion of Fr. John’s retirement. The letters were presented to Fr. John as a part of a thank you gift during the reception for Justin after his profession liturgy.

“I’ve been on vacation and have been reading through the letters,” said Fr. John, calling from Cleveland where he is visiting family. “The letters are so personal and touching. Please, let people know how grateful I am to receive them. I won’t be able to write back to everyone right away, but I want the SCJs to know how much I enjoy this gift. It truly is priceless.”

And so, from Fr. John: “Thanks!”

Spanish with a Polish accent

Go to the following link to view Br. Andy's view of Opening Mass at OLG: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQyC-QSRyGc&feature=youtu.be
Go to the following link to view Br. Andy’s view of Opening Mass at OLG: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQyC-QSRyGc&feature=youtu.be

Br. Andy Gancarczyk has been a part of the SCJ community at Our Lady of Guadalupe, Houston, since early this summer. Originally from Poland, Br. Andy served as a missionary in Uruguay for five years before coming to the United States to put his Spanish language skills to use in Houston.

After a couple of months at OLG, Br. Andy writes that “a Texas accent is now heard in my Spanish and I fear that I am losing all hope of mastering English! When it comes to Mexican food, sometimes I think it gives me some crazy dreams but generally I like it and I feel great being here in Houston at Our Lady of Guadalupe.”

Br. Andy did a short blog post that includes a video of the opening Mass at Our Lady of Guadalupe School and a few photos from Frater Joseph Vu’s vow renewal ceremony.

Click here to view the post.


Fr. Tim Gray has a new email address: tim.gray.scj@gmail.com

The Mustard Seed

Fr. Showreddy
Fr. Showreddy

The latest issue of the Mustard Seed, a publication of the Indian District, is available as a PDF download. Among the articles in the August issue is an interview with Fr. Showreddy, an Indian SCJ who has served in the Philippines for over four years. He is currently at St. Isidore the Farmer parish in Kumalarang, a parish with 23 substations.

“India gave me the vocation to become a priest; the Philippines gave me a vocation to become a missionary,” said Fr. Showreddy in the interview. “It was a like a love at first sight; my maiden visit to the Philippines in 2008 changed and designed my entire life. I was deeply attracted to the lives of the missionaries from different provinces, their dedication for the mission, sacrifice, courage, and exemplary life, be it in our SCJ parishes or formation houses, I sensed the fragrance of internationality and I badly wanted to be a part of it.

“My decision to go to the Philippines largely depended on the generosity of the Filipino Region because they welcomed me with open arms to be a missionary.”

Because it is a large file, the Mustard Seed has been split into two PDFs for download. Click here to download pages 1-12 and here to download 13-24.

Also available

Screen Shot 2014-08-25 at 9.51.01 AMThe August SCJ News is also available as a PDF. This month’s issue begins with a feature on the International Education Conference in Valencia, Spain. Click here to download the PDF.

The printed version is in the mail.

Click here to add a name to the subscription list.

Please remember

Mary Casper, the mother of Fr. Jim Casper of the Canadian Region, died August 17 in Leamington, Ontario. She had been in hospice care for several months.

Dn. Amadeu Gomes Teixeira, a member of the Portuguese Province, died August 21. He was born in 1941, professed in 1959 and ordained to the diaconate in 2000.

Dehonian education

The most recent update to the Dehonian Spirituality page is on Dehonian education. “The Priests of the Sacred Heart want to educate ‘from the heart,’ from their spirituality,” writes David Schimmel, director of Dehonian Associates. “As the new, Christian faith community flowed from Jesus’ pierced and opened heart, so does a new, well-grounded generation sprout from the opened and giving hearts of Dehonian educators. As fertile soil in which to plant seeds and let them germinate, the heart nurtures but does not constrict the developing shoots, leaves, and fruit of the new plant.”

Click here to read the full text, along with other reflections and prayers based in Dehonian Spirituality.

Provincial’s time

Fr. Stephen Huffstetter will be in the office the first part of this week. On Wednesday, he will take part in Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology’s opening liturgy. The next day he heads to Chicago for the consultation for a local superior.

And then he has a few days to get ready for his trip to Asia. From September 4-24 Fr. Steve will be visiting SCJ communities in the Philippines and Vietnam.