Father Peter Harman, 43, a Quincy native and the former pastor of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield was formally installed Feb. 28 as the 23rd rector of the Pontifical North American College (PNAC) in Rome. Appointed by the college last November, Father Harman assumed his new post on Feb. 1.
Parish organizers of pilgrimages to the 2016 March for Life in Washington, D.C., from throughout the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois drastically altered their plans as an intense low pressure system developed into a classic "nor'easter" that enveloped the nation's capital in monumental snowfall beginning on Jan. 22.
More than 250 central Illinoisans signed up for the annual trip to the nation's capital for the 2016 March for Life Youth Pilgrimage.
Buses departed early in the day Jan. 20 from various points throughout the Springfield diocese. Twenty-three groups representing 27 parishes or congregations were on board, including one group from the neighboring Diocese of Peoria.
"The opportunities that our seminarians have to be with one another and with the priests of our diocese are special times."
So said Father Brian Alford when asked for a takeaway from the winter gathering of seminarians, held each year between Christmas and New Year's while they are on break from their studies. Except for two studying in Rome, more than 20 seminarians attended the gathering Dec. 29-30, 2015.
Bishop Thomas John Paprocki delivered to priests at their annual convocation in September his reflections on some of the most important matters facing the diocese. He also recently shared with the curia at the Catholic Pastoral Center in Springfield his self-described "state of the diocese."
GRANITE CITY — Just like last year, brisk autumn winds greeted hundreds of participants Oct. 3 who joined Bishop Thomas John Paprocki, pastors and the Knights of Columbus in Granite City to pray the rosary and "peacefully and prayerfully" sing and walk to The Hope Clinic for Women, the only facility within the diocese's borders that performs surgical abortions.
Media coverage of Pope Francis' announcement that priests worldwide will be able to absolve women who had abortions caused widespread confusion since, according to Bishop Thomas John Paprocki, most priests in the United States, including the Springfield diocese, already have such authority in the sacrament of reconciliation.
Special observances in the Year of Concecrated Life are approaching. In a letter earlier this summer to pastors, parochial administrators, other parish officials and major superiors, Bishop Thomas John Paprocki encouraged parishes and schools to celebrate consecrated life during the week of of Sept. 13-20. On the evening of Sept. 20, Bishop Proprocki will celebrate vespers, or evening prayer, with religious of the diocese at 6:30 p.m. at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield.
GLEN CARBON — The leadership team that spearheaded the fundraising and oversaw construction of the new Father McGivney Catholic High School building will thank the community at a dedication ceremony on Sunday, Aug. 30 at 2:30 pm. A pivitol part of the ceremony will be when Bishop Thomas John Paprocki of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois will bless all areas of the facilities including the building, grounds and even the parking lots. McGivney officials said the dedication is open to the public, and all are welcome to tour the school and meet the families of the school.
After an absence of four years, Diocesan Music Day will return to the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield on Aug. 1 from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
"It is our hope that participation in the Music Day will once again make this an annual event," said Eliot Kapitan, diocesan director of the Office for Worship and the Catechumenate.