Diane Schlindwein

Approximately 120 people of all ages gathered on the steps of the Illinois State Capitol Building in Springfield at noon on Saturday, Oct. 14 to pray the rosary and to say The Prayer to the Guardian Angel of the United States, The Angelus, The Prayer to St. Michael, and the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, among other prayers at the Annual Prayer in the Public Square.

Those gathered were joining 21,750 other groups who were meeting in various places to say the rosary together that day, said organizer Donna Berte. One Hail Mary was prayed for each of the 50 states and an extra Hail Mary was added to each decade for additional territories of the United States.

Bishop Thomas John Paprocki concelebrated the annual White Mass for health care professionals at 4 p.m. on Oct. 14 at Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Concelebrating the Mass with Bishop Paprocki were Msgr. David Lantz, Father Fredrick Chima Mbiere and Father Charles Hart, OFM. All three priests are involved with ministering with people who are in the health care ministry or who are patients at hospitals. Deacon William E. Kessler, the bishop’s delegate for health care professionals, proclaimed the Gospel.

TUSCOLA — When Father Angel Sierra was named pastor of Forty Martyrs in 2015, he came on board during a landmark year — the 150-year anniversary of the Tuscola parish. Because he was aware of the timing, Father Sierra wondered how the parishioners would like to celebrate. It wasn’t long before he discovered that the people hoped to refurbish the church, which was built in 1925 and had last been refurbished in 1978.

ROME — Diocesan seminarian Dominic Rankin was one of 31 seminarians from the Pontifical North American College who were ordained to the transitional diaconate Sept. 28, in Rome. Deacon Rankin is a member of St. Rose of Lima Parish in Quincy and is the son of Mark and Stephanie Rankin.

Bishop James F. Checchio, Bishop of Metuchen — rector of the North American College from 2006 to 2016 — was the ordaining prelate, celebrating the Mass at the Altar of the Chair of St. Peter, in the Papal Basilica of St. Peter, in the Vatican.

Approximately 200 people from throughout the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois were in the pews of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception on the afternoon of Sept. 17, as Bishop Thomas John Paprocki celebrated the Mass for Couples Married 50 Years or More.

The annual celebration included a Mass, reception and an opportunity to have photos taken with Bishop Paprocki. It was attended not only by many couples who are celebrating 50 years of marriage this year, but others who had been married even longer. In some cases, children and grandchildren came along to celebrate with them.

ROME — Dominic Rankin, a seminarian for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois who is studying at the North American College in Rome, was to have been ordained to the diaconate on Sept. 28 at 9:30 a.m. Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica.

The ordination Mass was to have taken place at the Altar of the Chair, celebrated by Bishop James F. Checchio, of Metuchen. “He was the rector at the North American College my first year-and-a-half there,” Deacon Rankin says. “The altar is the one on the far back wall (behind the main altar that only Pope Francis uses) and below the famous window of the Holy Spirit.”

With the new school year now under way, two dozen seminarians are either settling in for the school year, or serving in parishes, says Father Brian Alford, director of Vocations for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois.

COLLINSVILLE — The women of Ss. Peter and Paul Parish in Collinsville will be putting the recently-constructed church gathering space to good use late this summer when they host their annual Women’s Day celebration.

This year’s event, “Miracles of our Faith,” will take place on Saturday, Aug. 26 from 8 a.m. through 1:30 p.m. in the newly-blessed fellowship hall in the basement of the gathering space, which is located at 207 Vandalia St. The main speaker at the event will be Catholic Radio hostess and award-winning author Elizabeth Ficocelli.

At least 100 people were on hand on the afternoon of June 27, when HSHS St. John’s Hospital in Springfield broke ground on its new outpatient center for women and children that will house providers from SIU Medicine, HSHS Medical Group and St. John’s Hospital.

Those in attendance included leaders from all three of the places as well as several members of the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis community, a number of physicians, personnel from varied areas of the hospital, Springfield Mayor Jim Langfelder and others from the Springfield community.

On Saturday, May 27, Bishop Thomas John Paprocki will ordain four men to the priesthood for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois. The ordination Mass is set for 10:30 a.m. at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield. As they finished up their years in the seminary and preparation for the priesthood Deacons Michael Friedel, Ronnie Lorilla, Rafal Pyrchla and Wayne Stock took time to share their thoughts on their upcoming ordinations.

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