Weekly News: November 16, 2020

SHSM specializes in fresh starts

The 38 houses in Sacred Heart Southern Missions’ Dehon Village have been called home by hundreds of families for more than two decades. Offering a fresh start, these houses provide safety, security and hope for people – often facing homelessness – while they repair their credit, look for work and begin to rebuild their lives.

A recent issue of the SHSM newsletter shares the story of one such resident, Fidelina, who was referred to SHSM by a women’s shelter six years ago. She and her four children were able to move into a house that had just become available at Dehon Village. With housing secure, she was able to get a job and help her family get a fresh start.

Br. Diego Diaz, SCJ, a social service minister, often met with Fidelina and her family. During one of their meetings, Fidelina asked if SHSM could help her buy a house.

Br. Diego sought the guidance of Andrea Vincent, SHSM’s director of programs. Working as a team, Br. Diego, Fidelina and Andrea began exploring possibilities. Fidelina looked at mobile homes and gathered pricing. Together, the three discussed options for the family. She found a reasonably priced trailer, but it needed work. Br. Diego was able to get flooring and other building materials through SHSM’s Gift in Kind program. After several months of renovation, the trailer was ready for move-in.

On November 1, Br. Diego and Fr. Hendrik Ardianto, SCJ, joined the family for a small house blessing. They are pictured at the top of the page.

“The children and I really miss our friends at Dehon Village, but we are so proud of our new home,” said Fidelina. “We thank everyone at Sacred Heart for all of their help over these years,”

From Q&As to taste-tests to prayer

Among the videos recently produced by our formation community is one titled “One Minute With Jesus.” It’s an invitation for people to take a minute, refocus and be with Jesus in Adoration.

“We meditate on the riches of this mystery of our faith in Adoration, so that the Body and Blood of Christ, food of eternal life, may transform our beings more deeply,” states the SCJ Rule of Life. Adoration is a mystery that “unceasingly throws us back onto the streets of the world in the service of the Gospel.”

Also posted is a series of Daily Oblation Prayers. They feature the prayers of Week I, narrated by Fr. Ed Zemlik, SCJ. The text of the prayers appears on the screen with an image of the Sacred Heart in the background. Each video runs just under two minutes. Please consider sharing them with others who may want to take part in the daily prayer.

Click here to view the prayer for Monday. All of the prayers can be found on our YouTube Channel, www.YouTube.com/DehoniansUSA. Currently, the channel’s home page displays the Dehonian Vocation Story series, several videos from Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology, and Week I of the Oblation prayers.

To access ALL of the videos on the channel, click here or on the “VIDEOS” tab displayed next to “HOME” near the top of the page.

Again, many thanks to our formation community at Sacred Heart Monastery who have used the opportunity of more “at home” time during the pandemic to put these and other videos together. If you like what you see, be sure to let them know.

Zoom assembly

Tomorrow, November 17, SCJs in active ministry in the US Province are invited to an assembly via Zoom. If you have questions about the assembly, contact Mary Gorski. Fr. Vien Nguyen, SCJ, is organizing the logistics for Zoom. If you need assistance regarding Zoom, please contact Fr. Vien. Note: Fr. Stephen Huffstetter, SCJ, vicar general, will be joining SCJs at the Zoom gathering.

Bishop Ornelas

“We need the church to be a laboratory of humanization”

Fr. Sergio Rotasperti, SCJ, general communications director, recently did an interview with Bishop José Ornelas Carvalho, SCJ, former superior general of the Priests of the Sacred Heart and now bishop of Setúbal and president of the Portuguese Bishops Conference. The video interview is in Italian, but a summary is available on the general website in English.

“I always wanted to be a priest and missionary,” said the bishop. “But God has always caught me off guard. I am nostalgic for what I left behind, but I accepted everything without bitterness and never got my head in the various roles I took on. Personally, I would have preferred to go on the mission, but the pope asked me to be a missionary here in Setúbal. The mission today is in Europe and a challenge for the Church.”

Asked about his recent comments at the Shrine of Fatima in which he highlighted the role of women, he said that “I think it is important to understand the spirit of the Gospel, the approach to man and woman. At Fatima, I said that the Church must be maternal and paternal. The Church in its masculinity reflects neither creation nor the Gospel. At Fatima we celebrated Mary. How can one put the woman out of the house? She is the image of the Church and she welcomed Jesus.”

He went on to say that “If a person is fragile, we have to care and accompany. God loves us, and loving us is the source of everything. If we are brothers and have difficulties, we must look at each other with love and respect and take care of each other. If judging replaces love, it means that we have not understood the new logic of the Gospel. In debated issues such as the recent one about homosexuality, there are very conflicting positions. I am not worried about that. But we need the Church to be a laboratory of humanization.”

Click here to read the full summary and access the video interview.

Please remember

+ Father Mirosław Daniluk, a member of the Polish Province, died on November 15. He was born in 1936, professed in 1953 and ordained in 1961.

+ Br. Zbigniew Mańko, also a member of the Polish Province, died on November 15. He was born in 1951 and professed in 1925.

+ Fr. Bernard Green SDS, a former employee of SHSST (1983-1987), died November 9. He was a member of the US Province of the Salvatorians and primarily taught pastoral counseling and pastoral courses.

Thank you

Frater Hubert Liassidji, SCJ, writes: I would like to express my gratitude to all my SCJ brothers who, in one way or another, have kept my father, Theodore, in their prayers following news of his fall. He is getting better, but still struggles with his breathing. He is being treated with medication. Please continue to keep my family in your prayers.

Update on Fr. Bob

Mary Balistreri, province director of healthcare, shares the following update on Fr. Bob Tucker, SCJ:

“Fr. Bob’s progress remains steady.  He has been spending 10-12 hours a day over the past few days on pressure support/vent weaning.  Physical, occupational and speech therapies continue to work on exercises to improve strength and stamina.  He is now tolerating sitting up at the bedside for almost 15 minutes.  The discharge planning team believes that Fr. Bob will be at RML for another two weeks.  Plans are in process for him to be transferred to either a local rehab facility/skilled nursing facility or to a hospital setting for acute rehab. [“Local” means the Milwaukee area] His ability to tolerate aggressive therapies will determine his next stop post-transplant. Fr. Bob continues to enjoy receiving text messages and letters.”


Depending on the source, Fr. Christianus Hendrik’s birthday is October 21 or November 21. The recently published North American Personnel Directory listed it in November, the same as the Elenchus of the congregation. “But didn’t we correct that?” said one of our eagle-eyed proofreaders. And so, we went back to the source, Fr. Hendrik, who verified that he was born on OCTOBER 21, 1969. And while he appreciated receiving cards and well-wishes on his 51st birthday last month, if you missed it, he welcomes a second round of cards this month.

Please make the correction in your directory. Fr. Hendrik’s birthday is listed correctly in the online directory and the North American online calendar. Our apologies for the error.

Provincial visitations, with adaptations

As with many other things during the pandemic, the 2020-21 Provincial Visitations will take place, but with a few adaptations. Since the previous visitations were cut short by COVID-19 precautions, the theme remains the same: “Our Ministry Together.” The visitations will be done via a hybrid model of on-site prayer and discussions combined with individual visits with Fr. Ed Kilianski, SCJ, via Zoom. Those in the Milwaukee area will have the option of in-person one-on-one visits (socially distanced). The schedule:

December 8-11:  St. Joseph’s Community at SHML
December 17: Sacred Heart Novitiate
January 4-8, 2021:  Sacred Heart at SHML
January 11-15:  Sacred Heart Monastery
February 2-4:  St. Michael Community, Mississippi
February 8-10:  South Dakota
February 22-25: Sacred Heart Community, Pinellas Park
March 1-4: Texas
March 15-17: Individuals not covered in community visitations

Feast of St. Gertrude

Today, November 16, is the feast of St. Gertrude, one of the patron saints of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Gertrude of Helfta (Eisleben, Alemannia, 1256 – Helfta, November 17, 1302) entered the Cistercian monastery of Helfta. Of her, Fr. Leo John Dehon wrote: “Jesus was pleased with the heart of Saint Gertrude, because he found there the same feelings of love, fidelity, compassion and dedication that he had experienced in his friends in Bethlehem and Nazareth, Bethany and the Upper Room, Gethsemane and Calvary.” (DSP 1936, 443).

Click here to access a liturgy for the day.

Closing shot

Several members of the pastoral team at Our Lady of Guadalupe in Houston, mask up and pose with winners of the parish raffle. Fr. Wojciech Adamczyk, SCJ, in the blue in the back, is OLG pastor. Fr. Rafael Querobin, SCJ, and Fr. Tim Gray, SCJ, are pictured second and third from the left.

Click here to subscribe to the weekly news (Fridge Notes) via emai