Weekly News: November 12, 2012

Fr. Stephen Huffstetter spoke at the dedication of the South Dakota Veterans Memorial. Many SCJ veterans with South Dakota ties are commemorated at the park.

Remembering our veterans

In many communities this past weekend it was a time of parades and other celebrations commemorating the service and sacrifice of those who served in the military. Veteran’s Day was on Sunday, November 11 and observed civically on November 12. [In Canada, it is known as “Remembrance Day.”]

In South Dakota, near St. Joseph’s Indian School in Chamberlain, several SCJ veterans are acknowledged in the newly developing South Dakota Veteran’s Park. Built primarily with donated funds and labor, the park includes remembrance bricks with the names of veterans who have South Dakota ties. Among the SCJs commemorated at the park: Fr. Anthony Kelly, Fr. Bill Pitcavage, Fr. Charles Talsky, Fr. Chuck Wonch, Fr. Don Barnd, Fr. Frank Strafalace, Fr. Gary Lantz, Fr. Joe Ford, Fr. Joe Hasselbauer, Fr. Joe Poirier, Fr. Johnny Klingler, Fr. Phil Elmer and Fr. Francis Mattingly.

Fr. Stephen Huffstetter, executive director of St. Joseph’s Indian School, was among those who spoke at the park’s dedication ceremony in September.

Of course, there are many other SCJs and co-workers who have served in the military. Our prayers and thanks to them for their dedication and sacrifice as we commemorate veterans in a special way this week.

A hands-on connection to the life of Jesus

Much can be learned about a place through books, class work and the shared impressions of others. This is how most people come to know of the Holy Land, about the life of Jesus and his first disciples.

Fr. Charles Brown celebrating Mass near the Sea of Galilee

“But to actually get the same dirt on your shoes that Jesus or King David may have walked in; there is something powerful in that,” said Fr. Charles Brown, an assistant professor of Scripture Studies at SHST. “It is a visceral connection that roots you to the Holy Land in a significant way.”

Sacred Heart School of Theology recently made a three-year commitment to be a part of a consortium of nine schools that operates the “Bethsaida Archeology Project,” just north of the Sea of Galilee.

In doing so, SHST becomes the only Catholic seminary in North America to sponsor an archeological dig in the Holy Land.

In November, the last of the SHST student spots for 2013 were filled. However, starting in 2014, the seminary would like to open the program to SCJs throughout the world and perhaps expand its participation to several summer sessions.

“We are very excited,” Fr. Brown said, “this new project is a marvelous fulfillment of our goals as a seminary.  It also fulfills the desire of Fr. Leo Dehon, our founder, to train men in the theological and other human sciences for effective priestly ministry in the heart of modern societies.”

Click here to read the full story posted on the province website.


Fr. Bernie Rosinski is among those taking part in a pilgrimage to Rome and nearby sites organized by the Province Development Office. He has written several posts on the province blog about the experience, including one about the group’s visit to Assisi:

Fr. Bernie and Fr. Dominic join two members of the tour for lunch in Assisi

“St. Francis would have been proud of our group. We supported all the merchant class of which his father was a member. Yes, it was a time for shopping as well as visiting sacred shrines…

“The church of St. Clare fronts the chapel of St. George in which the famous crucifix from which Francis heard the words: ‘repair my church’ were heard. After some months of literal interpretation, Francis finally understood Christ to mean ‘the’ Church, not ‘a’ church. Clare’s tomb is contained in the crypt and other famous memorabilia are found there as well…

“Walking down the street toward the Basilica of St. Francis was like walking the halls of history. The tour guide would point to the left and right as we proceeded and name a date, an event, an occurrence that took place anywhere from the 12th century to the 20th… The tour guide showed us just how an illiterate people could be served by the images and frescoes in the basilica. Beginning at one end, she made her way around the entire upper church and narrated the life of St. Francis in frescoes by Giotto. It was a much appreciated tour de force…”

Click here to read other blog entries about the trip.


Fr. Yulius (“Nardi”) Sunardi, a member of the Indonesian Province who has been studying for a doctorate in clinical psychology at Marquette University, is moving east to do a year-long internship at the St. John Vianney Center. The center focuses on holistic and spiritual treatment of priests and religious.

His address as of November 19:
St Titus Parish
3006 Keenwood Rd.
East Norriton, PA 19403
610-279-4990 (home)
610-518-2301 (work)

Students from St. Clement's

A prayer for the students, and the school

Fr. Egide Safari, a member of the Congolese Province, recently wrote about the start of the new school year at one of the province’s schools, St. Clement. The following is paraphrased from the original French:

“St. Clement in Kinshasa recently held an opening Mass, seeking the grace and support of God, for the 2012-13 school year. The principal celebrant was Fr. Élie Muzungu, out-going director of the school. [Originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Fr. Élie is a member of the Canadian Region; he did his novitiate in Chicago with members of the U.S. Province.]

Fr. Élie urged students to love God, their parents and school, and reminded them of the sacrifice needed to do well in school.

St. Clement School includes three kindergarten classes, nine primary school classes and 14 secondary school classes. Unlike last year, there has been a decline in enrollment, especially in kindergarten. This is because of the difficult social conditions of the country. Parents have to pay the cost of their children’s education. Throughout the school year, students are forced to abandon school because of a lack of funds.

This is hard for the students, of course, but also for the school because it depends upon tuition to pay for much of its costs, including staff payroll and supplies.

And so, we pray and wish for a successful school year for our students, but also for the school itself.


Although it feels like he is already a member after having lived and ministered in the United States for several years, Fr. Zbigniew Morawiec officially joins the U.S. Province on December 25. Welcome Ziggy!

Please remember

Br. Giuseppe Patrizio Carobbio, a member of the South Italian Province, died November 5. He was born in 1920 and professed in 1939.

Also, Bishop Joseph Potocnak’s sister, Betty Fagan, died November 7. Condolences can be sent to Bishop Joe at 325 E. College Ave., Holly Springs, MS 38635.

Of course, let us also keep in prayer the many people affected by Hurricane Sandy and the challenging weather that continues to plague the East Coast. Last week the U.S. Province made a $5,000 donation to Catholic Charities USA to assist with relief efforts.

Provincial’s time

Fr. Tom Cassidy is in Toronto this week for the North American councils meeting. He returns to Milwaukee next weekend and will be there for Thanksgiving and the rest of the month.

Upcoming meetings and events:

November 13-14, North American Councils meeting in Toronto
November 22-23, Provincialate Offices closed for Thanksgiving
December 18-19, Provincial Council Meeting
December 24-26, Provincialate Offices closed for Christmas
December 31 – January 1, Provincialate Offices closed for New Year’s

January 29-30: Provincial Council Meeting
March 13: Local Superiors Meeting
March 14: Provincial Council Meeting
April 8-9: Mission Education Conference, St. Joseph’s Indian School
April 30 – May 1: Provincial Council Meeting (budgets)
Week of June 3: Province Election Assembly.

July 7-11, 2014: Provincial Chapter