Weekly News: December 23, 2019

A Christmas prayer

O sweet Child of Bethlehem, grant that we may share with all our hearts in this profound mystery of Christmas. Put into the hearts of men and women this peace for which they sometimes seek so desperately and which you alone can give to them. Help them to know one another better, and to live as brothers and sisters, children of the same Father. Reveal to them also your beauty, holiness, and purity. Awaken in their hearts love and gratitude for your infinite goodness. Join them all together in your love. And give us your heavenly peace. Amen.

–Pope John XXIII

Holiday schedule

The Provincial Offices will be fairly quiet during the next two weeks. Officially, the offices are closed December 24-26, December 31 and January 1 for Christmas and New Year’s. However, most lay staff and SCJs are taking a few vacation days beyond the official schedule. Regular hours resume on Thursday, January 2.

There will be no Fridge Notes December 30; the next edition will be January 6.

Personnel directory

A PDF of the updated North American Personnel Directory is available for download from the top of the online directory page in the US Province website. The PDF has been updated as of December 20. There is both a high resolution (approximately 16 MG) and a low resolution version (1.5 MG). The low resolution PDF is appropriate for computers, smartphones and other mobile devices.

Note that the online directory is updated as soon as changes are received at the Provincial Offices. The PDF of the print directory is updated approximately once a month.

A reminder: the personnel directory is password-protected and can be found in the Members’ section of the website.


A reminder that the online necrology is available from a link in the Members section of the US Province website. Click here to access it directly.

Have you responded?

“Our Future: Together in Community and Ministry, Part III” is scheduled for January 7-9, 2020 at the Provincial Conference Center.

All members of the province who are under 70 and in active ministry are expected to attend this Conference. If you are in this category and have not confirmed your attendance, please do so today by contacting Br. Frank Presto. SCJs who need lodging are asked to make their own arrangements.

“’Ministry’ will be the focus of our 2020 conference,” wrote Fr. Ed Kilianski, SCJ, in his letter of November 7. “For several years we have spoken about developing a new ministry. Already a small group has begun to brainstorm on possibilities in young adult ministry. Is this where we want to focus our energies, and if so, how do we make it happen?

“It is also important to talk about our current ministries. How well do we know about ministries outside of our particular areas? To have meaningful conversations about our ministries we need to have a comprehensive understanding of what those ministries are. I do not want discussions about ministry to simply become debates about what to keep and what to let go. Together, we need to prayerfully discern what we as Dehonians are called to do in the United States at this time.”

The conference will begin at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday morning (January 7) and conclude with Mass, followed by lunch, on Thursday, (January 9). Sr. Cathy Bertrand, SSND, will once again serve as facilitator.

Keep in prayer

John Albers, the brother-in-law of Fr. Tom Cassidy, is recovering from heart bypass surgery. On Friday he had a five-hour surgery; there was 70% blockage in the “widow maker’s” artery. That was corrected along with heart ablation for AFib. Jane, Fr. Tom’s sister, thanks everyone for their prayers.

Fr. Bob Naglich had several surgeries to address infections and other complications following organ transplant surgery. Please continue to keep him in prayer.

A few snowy setbacks

On October 29, the Sacred Heart Center in Eagle Butte, SD, had a groundbreaking ceremony for a new Family Violence Women’s Safe Shelter. Greg Fisher, SHC executive director, recently wrote with an update:

“As far as progress on our project, we continue to take smaller steps than we’d like; although, Mother Nature has not gotten the best of us here in the north country.  Work continues on our building’s foundation, but it is near completion.  Also, backfill has been ongoing.  It was hoped to have the foundation poured and completed by the end of November, but considering time off for Thanksgiving and the current inconvenience of large amounts of snow we really are not far behind.

“According to the construction site manager, it is planned to have all the foundation poured and backfilled, selective pre-built walls and rafters hauled onto site and construction ready for building by the end of next week [mid-late December]. The walls and trusses are being built off site and hauled onto the site as the needed in order to prevent theft of material from occurring.”

Click here to read more about the center.

Happy birthday!

Those celebrating birthdays in January include:  Fr. Tom Westhoven (Jan. 9), Novice Hung Pham (Jan. 12), Fr. Ralph Intranuovo and Frater John Huan Nguyen (Jan. 20), Fr. Bernie Rosinski (Jan. 22), Br. Andy Lewandowski and Fr. Louis Mariano Fernandes (Jan. 26). Happy birthday!

A reminder: birthdays are listed in the online North American calendar. Click here to access it.


Fr. Vien Nguyen, SCJ, has been named vice rector of Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology. He will assume the position on July 1, 2020. Fr. Zbigniew Morawiec, SCJ, the current vice rector, will be on sabbatical during the next academic year.

General visitation

The tentative dates for the visitation of Fr. Carlos Luis Suarez Codorniú, SCJ, and Fr. Stephen Huffstetter, SCJ, to the US Province will be August 29 through September 19, 2020. The schedule of the community visits is in the process of being finalized. Fr. Carlos Luis will take part in the Dehon Lecture on September 16 at SHSST. He is tentatively scheduled to meet with the US Provincial Council on September 17.

Closing shot

Fr. Richard Johnston, SCJ, visits with Santa at Our Lady of Guadalupe in Houston.

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