Weekly News: March 19, 2012

Fr. Michael Burke interviews Gabriel Gutierrez during Admissions Weekend. Gabriel will join the formation community in Chicago in August.

Welcome and congrats!

Gabriel Gutierrez

Gabriel Gutierrez was accepted by the Admissions Board as a candidate for the SCJ formation program. The board met on March 17.

Gabriel is from Ridgecrest, Calif., where he is a member of St. Ann Parish in the Fresno Diocese. He will graduate from Burroughs High School in spring and has been accepted as a student at St. Xavier University in Chicago. Gabriel will join the Dehon Formation Community at the end of the summer, also in Chicago.

The son of Gabriel and Theresa Gutierrez, Gabriel is one of three children.

If you or someone you know wants to learn more about a vocation with the Priests of the Sacred Heart, contact Vocation Central at vocationcentral@wi.rr.com or call 800-609-5559 (414-529-4255). Click here to visit the vocation section of our province website.

Budget reminder

The Treasurer’s Office reminds SCJs that ALL budgets are due on March 30. If you have questions, please contact Kevin Stanke, John Kuxhause or Dn. David Nagel.

Rule of Life and Province Directory

A draft version of the Rule Life, including the directory of the U.S. Province, has been posted in the Members section of the province website. It is available for download as a PDF.

The booklet is scheduled to be printed in April. Earlier this year the English edition of the Rule of Life, without the U.S. Province Directory, was printed and distributed to other English-speaking entities in the congregation.

Keep in prayer

Before leaving Indonesia last week, Fr. Mark Fortner gave the following update on Fr. Tom Fix:  “His doctors have postponed the last two weekly chemotherapy treatments because of his overall fragile condition.  At the present time, they are focusing on pain management, trying to make him as comfortable as possible. Although he is bed-ridden, Fr. Tom continues to remain hopeful, and joyfully receives visits from many friends and SCJs. Yet he has also expressed awareness and readiness of the severity of his situation.  Before leaving for the airport last evening, I went to the hospital for the last time.  In a very touching moment, with several of Fr. Tom’s friends around his bed, we said our good-byes and received one another’s blessing.”

Chaplain opportunity

The Benedictine Sisters of Sacred Heart Monastery in Yankton, S.D., are looking for a chaplain to serve their community of elderly and infirm sisters at St. Joseph Care Center. The chaplain would be expected to celebrate Eucharist and provide other sacramental ministry at the center, and serve as a presence to the 25 sisters in residence. Room and board in a private apartment, with garage, would be provided. Other ministry options would also be available at nearby nursing homes and a hospital, as well as at two Yankton parishes. The monastery is located on the bluffs of the Missouri River.

If you would like to learn more about the position contact Sr. Penny Bingham, OSB, prioress at 605-668-6001 or at pbingham@mtmc.edu.

Bishop Swain with recently confirmed youth at St. Joseph parish in Fort Thompson, S.D. Pictured on the left is Fr. Vincent Suparman of the Lower Brule Pastoral Team.

SCJs welcome Bishop Swain on pastoral visit

Bishop Paul Swain of Sioux Falls made a pastoral visit to St. Joseph parish in Fort Thompson on March 18 where he did confirmations and celebrated Mass. Present were Sr. Charles Palm, OSB and Dn. Steve McLaughlin from East River, and members of the Lower Pastoral Team. Fr. Gary Lantz, Fr. Stephen Huffstetter and Vincent Suparman concelebrated the Mass.

“In his homily the bishop talked about how important it is to be faithful the guidance of the Holy Spirit,” wrote Fr. Vincent in an email following the visit. “The sacrament of confirmation causes us to  reflect on the role of the Holy Spirit in our church and in our lives in a deeper way. ‘You are invited to learn constantly how to share your Catholic faith with others,’ said the bishop.”

Nine young parishioners were confirmed by Bishop Swain. “Reflecting on John 3:16-21, the bishop told the young people that ‘each one of us is called to share our faith and talents through our works and our lives by which we proclaim God’s grace and love.’”

A luncheon in the parish hall followed the Mass. From Fort Thompson, Bishop Swain went to St. James in Chamberlain to celebrate Mass and confirm students there. Fr. Guy Blair is pastor of St. James.

Founder’s Day activities

Fr. Leo John Dehon, founder of the Priests of the Sacred Heart, was born on March 14, 1843. It is a day celebrated by SCJs throughout the world in a variety of ways.

Fr. Yulius Sunardi

At Sacred Heart School of Theology Founder’s Day began with Eucharist, at which Fr. Yulius Sunardi, an Indonesian SCJ doing doctoral studies in psychology, reflected on “older” vocations. Sacred Heart is the largest seminary in the United States specializing in adult vocations. However, as Fr. Nardi stated in his homily, the formation of adult vocations in the congregation goes back to Fr. Dehon’s time. Click here to read the text of Fr. Nardi’s homily.

The seminary also hosted its annual Dehon Lecture. Fr. Gregory Heille, O.P., spoke about preaching.

“Good Sunday preaching calls us into parish-wide ‘choral listening’ for the Living Word of God in every home and heart,” said Fr. Heille. “It calls for a parish commitment to catechesis, pastoral care, and action for justice. When the Living Word of God animates a faith community, the Sunday homily can rightly become the ‘summit and source’ of a pervasive Ministry of the Word in which the entire faith community engages in and is transformed by the Gospel.”

Fr. Heille is professor of homiletics and academic dean at Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis. As president of the Catholic Association of Teachers of Homiletics, Fr. Heille coordinated the writing team for Preaching in the Sunday Assembly: A Pastoral Commentary on Fulfilled in Your Hearing.

Founder’s Day in the Philippines

As noted previously in the Fridge Notes, SCJs in the Philippines celebrated Founder’s Day by inaugurating the new Philippine District. Among those in attendance were Fr. Tom Cassidy of the U.S. Province, Fr. Andreas Madya of the Indonesian Province, and Fr. Claudio Dalla Zuanna, vicar general. Fr. Claudio came as Fr. General’s delegate; he officially inaugurated the new region and installed its first administration.

During the celebration the region also accepted six candidates for postulancy, and welcomed 12 men and women who dedicated their lives to the Sacred Heart.

Fr. Andrew Sudol, a member of the Philippine Region, wrote about the day. Click here to read his text.

Provincial’s Time

Fr. Tom Cassidy returned from the Philippines over the weekend and is now in St. Louis for CMSM meetings. March 27-28 he has Provincial Council meetings in Hales Corners.

Upcoming meetings and events

March 27-28: Provincial Council Meeting
April 5-9: The Provincialate will close at 2 pm. on Holy Thursday (April 5), and not reopen until Tuesday, April 10.
April 15: Easter Concert at Sacred Heart Monastery/School of Theology
May 2-3: North American Councils meeting, Hales Corners
May 15: Mass for the Anointing of the Sick, SHM/SHST
May 30-31: Provincial Council Meeting (budgets)
June 15: Feast of the Sacred Heart
June 28: Provincial Council Meeting (conference call re: formation)
July 3-4: Provincialate Offices closed for Independence Day.
July 9-12: Province Assembly, Hales Corners
July 16-21: General Conference, Neustadt, Germany
July 23-25: SCJ Major Superiors Meeting, Neustadt, Germany

April 8-9: Mission Education Conference, St. Joseph’s Indian School
Week of June 3: Province Election Assembly