Weekly News: July 17, 2023

Centennial celebrations begin!

Yesterday, July 16, SCJs in the United States held the first of three province Centennial celebrations; this year marks the 100th anniversary of Dehonian ministry in the United States. Among those in the main chapel at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology yesterday were Bishop Donald DeGrood of Sioux Falls, Bishop Jeffrey R. Haines (Auxiliary Bishop of Milwaukee), representatives of Dehonian entities from around the world, as well as benefactors and alumni of Dehonian schools and seminaries.

During the luncheon, several benefactors spoke about the impact of the Priests of the Sacred Heart in their lives, including Andreas Klotz, the son of Josef K. Klotz, the artist who installed the stained glass windows in the Sacred Heart Chapel. In the afternoon, a brief memorial service was held at the community mausoleum, during which the names of each deceased member of the province was read aloud.

Tonight, July 17, there will be a “family” celebration of the Centennial. SCJs will join with coworkers, family and friends of the community for an evening liturgy and meal.

On July 30, The South Dakota community will host a Centennial celebration at the birthplace of Dehonian ministry in the United States: Lower Brule, SD. Bishop Peter Muhich of Rapid City will be the main celebrant and Fr. Stefan Tertünte, SCJ, provincial superior of the German Province, will be the homilist.

Click here to view photos from yesterday’s celebrations.

Province Chapter

The Provincial Chapter begins tomorrow, July 18, at 9:00 a.m. All delegates are asked to be in the Provincial Conference Center a few minutes prior to the start. Although the Chapter itself may adapt its schedule, most days will go until approximately 4:30 p.m. at the Conference Center (with a midday break for lunch). Mass will be at 5:00 p.m. at Good Shepherd Chapel at SHML, followed by a social and dinner. The Chapter is scheduled to conclude by noon on Friday, July 21. Delegates are reminded to bring their folders with the materials that they received in preparation for the Chapter.

Provincial Chapter the focus of As a Rule

The two writers for the July issue of As a Rule – Fr. Jack Kurps, SCJ, and Fr. Henry Nguyen, SCJ – are both members of the Chapter Preparatory Committee. As noted above, the Province Chapter begins tomorrow. Excerpts from Frs. Jack and Henry’s reflections:

“There was another time in our history in which we had exactly the same number of members as we have today,” wrote Fr. Jack. “At that time, the province was growing and filled with hope for the future. The province will, God willing, be here long after you and I are gone. The two major questions of this year’s Chapter — how to foster interculturality in the province as we become more international and how to better share Dehonian spirituality with the laity in our parishes and ministries — are essential questions for our present reality and the future. The willingness of SCJs from other provinces to join us, the dedication of those who work with us, and the desire of more and more people to learn about and embrace Dehonian spirituality should all be a source of great hope and help to ‘scatter clouds of discouragement.’ May our hearts be receptive to the promptings of the Spirit as we seek “a renewed vision of life and service together.”

Fr. Henry writes that “as I reflected on the State of the Province report – which focuses on three pillars of our religious life: spirituality, community life, and ministry – I realized that these are the same three pillars that I focus on with vocation ministry. I meet with young men to talk to them about our spiritual, communal, and ministerial life. These three pillars go hand in hand for a Dehonian – it is the foundation of our lives!”

Click here to access the full issue. 

Remembering Fr. Anthony

Friday, July 21, marks the one-year anniversary of the disappearance of Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ. The final day of the Provincial Chapter will begin in prayer, as delegates remember Fr. Anthony. Please take a moment on Friday to pray for him, Fr. Anthony’s family, fellow SCJs, friends and coworkers who are impacted by Fr. Anthony’s disappearance.

Together we pray:

Loving God, you call all things into being
and bring order out of chaos.

Help us who are searching for Fr. Anthony
to recognize your will in these difficult times.

Be with Fr. Anthony whom you called to service
and open the hearts of our brothers and sisters
to help us find him.

Grant us also willing hearts to be strong in hope,
that our prayers and thoughts
may guide Fr. Anthony home.

We bring Fr. Anthony to you, Lord,
entrusting him to the mercy of the Heart of Jesus.

“It’s a life-long journey”

For Fr. Andrzej Sudol, SCJ, starting his presentation to ECS students by leading them in the singing of Psalm 121 in Lingala, one of the national languages of the Democratic Republic of Congo, was more than just a practical way to bring the afternoon’s topic – “Interculturality and Multicultural Ministries” – to life.

“In many cultures, 1:00 p.m. is SIESTA TIME,” said Fr. Andrzej. “With the help of our Congolese SCJ students, we were able to get everyone to join in the ritual singing and dance. Not only did we begin our afternoon with prayer, but the style got everyone’s energy levels up after lunch so that nobody slept through the presentation, including me!”

Fr. Andrzej has lived interculturality most of his adult life. Originally from the Polish province, he ministered in India and the Philippines before coming to the United States, where he served in formation while earning a doctorate with a focus on interculturality from Catholic Theological Union. He is now pastor of St. Martin of Tours parish in Franklin, WI.

“With the ECS students I shared my experience with diversity of cultures and multicultural communities,” said Fr. Andrzej. “I showed them many photos and shared examples. I gave them some basics of intercultural dynamics and skills. But above all I wanted to inspire them for intercultural living and mission. You need an effort, but also passion to be open to other cultures, and to share yours. It’s a life-long journey.

“ECS” is the English and Culture Studies program at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology, formerly known as ESL. Fr. Andrzej spoke to the class on July 13.

Click here to read more on the province website.

Preparing for vocation ministry

Not only is Fr. Henry Nguyen, SCJ, new to the priesthood, but he is also new to vocation ministry, having been appointed as Province Vocation Director at the beginning of the year. To help him learn more about the ministry, last week he took part in the National Religious Vocation Conference’s Summer Institute Orientation Program for New Vocation Directors. It was held in Leavenworth, KS. Fr. Henry writes about the experience:

“The five-day workshop is one of many workshops of the Curriculum for Vocation Ministers. Our class / cohort consisted of 24 lay people, sisters, brothers, and priests in the Orientation Program for New Vocation Directors (Summer Institute 2023).

“A lot of information was given, but I felt that I had some background as I had already attended several workshops via Zoom that were part of last year’s curriculum. These were on topics such as ethics issues and behavioral assessment, with the presenters using real case studies to help us be more prepared for our ministry.

“During last week’s program we walked through the steps of the vocation process, from initial inquiry to serious discernment and eventually – in some cases – application to candidacy. The emphasis was not in measuring success by numbers, but rather on how we are able to help young people discover where God is calling them; how they are being asked to respond to God’s love.

“I am thankful for my cohort and was grateful for the time we spent in prayer, dialogue, and learning. We were reminded that we aren’t alone on this journey, as there are many people to support us, including members of our communities, our cohort and NRVC itself.

“I know that this isn’t the end for our cohort of 2023, but instead, the beginning of something great, as we minister to those searching to serve Christ.”

Fr. Henry is pictured above with his cohort, front row, second from right.

Please remember

+ Br. Pietro Galuppini, a member of the North Italian Province, died on July 17. He was born in 1941, professed in 1957 and made his perpetual profession in 1962.


Last week SCJs were sent an invitation via email to the Province Jubilee Celebrations which will take place on Saturday, August 12. This year’s jubilarians include Fr. Jim Schroeder (60 years), Fr. Guy Blair (50 years), Fr. Francis Vu Tran (25 years) and Fr. Mark Mastin (20 years). Fr. Juan Carlos Castañeda Rojas celebrates his 10th anniversary. He professed vows in the US Province, and is currently ministering in Ecuador.

The Jubilee Mass will begin at 4:00 p.m. in the main chapel at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology / Sacred Heart Monastery on August 12. A social and dinner will follow.

RSVP to 414-425-6910 or by email at provadm@usprovince.org by August 1. Click here to download the invitation.

Commemorating the Centennial with iconography

In commemoration of the centennial of Dehonian ministry in the United States, Fr. Charles Brown, SCJ, created an icon of the Risen Savior, which is currently on display in the SHSST lobby for the July 16-17 celebrations. [The image is below] Fr. Charlie is an accomplished icon artist who also created the image of Mary in the main chapel at SHSST. His sister, Susan A. Brown, assisted him with the characters that appear on the image.

Fr. Charlie suggests that the following scripture reading and prayer be used with the icon:

Scripture: John 20:19-21:

Jesus came and stood among the disciples and said, “Peace be with you.” After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you…”


Christ Jesus, we see the wounds of your risen body.
Your hands and your side, opened on the cross,
reveal your great love for us.
Your wounds are the wounds of the world:
they remind us how often God’s good creation
is broken by human suffering and the misuse of nature’s gifts.
From your wounds, you send us into the world
to share in your ministry of peace and healing reparation.
As we rejoice in our Dehonian life, we rededicate ourselves
to this oblation that has its only origin in your peace.
So, may we join you in bringing all creation
to praise and give thanks to God, our loving Father.

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