Weekly News: February 7, 2022

A new term begins

On Wednesday, February 2, Fr. Vien Nguyen, SCJ, was installed as the 16th provincial superior of the US Province of the Priests of the Sacred Heart. He was elected to the position on January 4 during the province’s Election Assembly. Prior to his election, Fr. Vien was vice rector and assistant professor of Scripture Studies at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology in Hales Corners, WI.

The installation took place at Good Shepherd Chapel at Sacred Heart at Monastery Lake.

Serving with Fr. Vien is the newly elected Provincial Council: Fr. Jack Kurps, SCJ (vice provincial superior and executive director of Sacred Heart Southern Missions in Mississippi), Fr. Rafael Querobin, SCJ (administrator of Our Lady of Guadalupe parish in Houston), Fr. Greg Schill, SCJ (chaplain at St. Joseph’s Indian School in South Dakota), Br. Duane Lemke, SCJ (superior of Sacred Heart Monastery and province director of Justice, Peace and Reconciliation) and Dn. David Nagel, SCJ (treasurer of the US Province).

Fr. Vien and his council have a three-year term.

HOMILY: click here to download a PDF of Fr. Vien’s homily at the Installation Mass

Or click here to read it on the province website.

PHOTOS: click here to view an online photo album from the installation.

VIDEO: click here to view a video of the installation.

Moments from the Assembly

The province video team put together a brief video (a little over four minutes) of the January 3-6 US Province Election Assembly. In it are moments from the election process itself, but also comments from SCJs about their hopes for the future, the challenges the province faces, and those things for which Dehonians are grateful, including the opportunity to be together in assembly after two years kept apart by the pandemic.

Click here or on the image above to view the video.

Fr. Vien

Church ministry is collaborative

Shortly after he was installed as provincial superior, Fr. Vien Nguyen sent out two letters: one to his brother SCJs in the US Province, and one to those who collaborate with them as employees, volunteers and others in service to the province.

“We see that church ministry is never alone but rather communal and inclusive,” wrote Fr. Vien to co-workers and other collaborators. “Fr. Leo John Dehon, founder of the Priests of the Sacred Heart, also embraced the collaborative character of ministry. When assigned as a parish priest in St. Quentin, France, he saw firsthand the textile industry workers’ harsh and dangerous conditions. Feeling called to remedy these social and moral woes, he organized meetings to highlight the plight of workers, in collaboration with the laity and the clergy. He founded a religious community of men dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus to work for justice, peace, and integrity and dignity of all persons.

“Fr. Dehon’s mission of respecting the value and dignity of the human person continues today. You are participating in his mission, which is the mission of Jesus and the Church. As provincial superior of the US Province and on behalf of its members, I would like to send you my greetings and gratitude for what you do.”

Click here to access the letter to CO-WORKERS.

Click here to Fr. Vien’s letter to SCJs of the US Province.

Frater Henry assists the archbishop

A quick detour to Milwaukee

On the way back to South Africa from a conference in the US, Archbishop Zolile Mpambani, SCJ, of Bloemfontein, made a short detour to the Milwaukee area February 3-7.

“I wanted to make sure that I visited the SCJ community in Hales Corners, even if just for a few days,” he said. “I love the SCJs and I know that they love me too, as ‘love’ is our motto.”

Being a Dehonian is at the root of Archbishop Zolile’s identity. “The motto on my coat of arms says, ‘As I have loved you, love one another,’” he said. “Being a Prophet of Love and Servant of Reconciliation has always been my strong point; it is a God-given strength and I make use of it whenever and wherever I can.”

The four-day visit allowed him the opportunity to celebrate Mass with the Sacred Heart Monastery Community on February 4 (Fr. John Czyzynski, SCJ, First Friday presenter, was the homilist), and connect with seminarians and other community members over number of topics, including a shared love of soccer, speaking about championship matches, teams and favorite players.

Before being named archbishop of Bloemfontein (South Africa) in 2020, he served as bishop of the diocese of Kokstad. He was appointed as bishop after only two months as provincial superior of the Dehonians’ South African Province. He has also served in formation, pastoral ministry and on the General Council.

“To the Dehonians in the US Province, I thank you for welcoming me,” said Archbishop Zolile. “Thank you for your generosity, care and support, especially when I was struggling in Kokstad for the first three years of my episcopacy, and even thereafter.  Thank you also for supporting me with Mass Stipends…

“May the good Lord bless all of the confreres in the US Province and grant you as many vocations as you need for the continuation of the service of evangelization and the spread of the SCJ charism in the country.”

Click here to read more.

Click here to view PHOTOS from the archbishop’s visit at Sacred Heart Monastery

Please remember

+ Agustín Suárez, the father of Fr. Carlos Luis Suárez Codorniú, died on February 2 in in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Spain).

+ Fr. João Freitas Nóbrega, a member of the Portuguese Province, died on February 3. He was born in 1946, professed in 1966 and ordained in 1973.

International Day of Prayer and Awareness Against Human Trafficking

Tomorrow, February 8, is “International Day of Prayer and Awareness Against Human Trafficking” as declared by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and the International Union of Superiors General. The day was chosen because it is the feast of Josephine Bakhita, the patron of victims of human trafficking. Born into a prosperous family in Sudan in 1869, she was kidnapped and enslaved when she was seven and was bought, sold and beaten until she found refuge as the caretaker of an Italian family’s child. She eventually gained her freedom and went on to become a Canossian nun and dedicate her life to sharing her story of deliverance from slavery and serving the poor.

“The International Day of Prayer and Awareness against Human Trafficking brings into the spotlight one of the main causes of human trafficking: the dominant economic model of our time, whose limits and contradictions are exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic,” states the website “RFM,” of the Franciscan Network on Migration.

Click here to learn more on the RFM website.

We pray…

Loving Father,
We seek your divine protection for all who are exploited and enslaved.
For those forced into labor, trafficked into sexual slavery, and denied freedom.
We beseech you to release them from their chains.
Grant them protection, safety, and empowerment.

Restore their dignity and provide them a new beginning.
Show us how we might end exploitation by addressing its causes.
Help us reach out in support of victims and survivors of human trafficking.
Make us instruments of your spirit for their liberation.

For this we pray through our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen

Prayer from the US Conference of Catholic Bishops


Br. Guy Consolmagno, SJ, director of the Vatican Observatory, will be the speaker at this Wednesday’s Dehon Lecture at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology. His topic: “Covid, Faith, and the Fallibility of Science.”

Br. Guy is the Director of the Vatican Observatory and President of the Vatican Observatory Foundation. Due to the pandemic, in-person attendance is very limited. However, anyone is welcome to view the lecture via livestream. No registration is necessary. Click on the desired link below.



Click here for more information on the SHSST website.

Saying thanks

During a luncheon at the Provincial Offices last Wednesday, Fr. Vien Nguyen gave Fr. Ed Kilianski, SCJ, a gift to thank him for his years of service in administration. The two are pictured below. Fr. Ed and other members of the previous administration were honored during the luncheon.

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