Catholic Times is pleased to recognize the following religious sisters and one religious brother who have lived in or served in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois and are celebrating a significant jubilee in 2017.
These people surely deserve our thanks, respect, admiration and prayers for selflessly and courageously answering the call to serve God’s people. Read on to see if you recognize someone who has made a difference in your life or in the life of someone you know.
On the Friday within the Octave of Easter, Bishop Thomas John Paprocki ordained three seminarians to the transitional diaconate during an evening Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield.
Hundreds of people were at the Cathedral on April 21 in support of Robert Paul Johnson, Aaron Thomas Kuhn and Mark Walker Tracy as they received the sacrament of holy orders, ordaining them to deacons as a transitional step toward being priests for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois.
Priests in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois will join Bishop Thomas John Paprocki for the annual priests’ jubilee celebration on Tuesday, May 9 at Villa Maria Catholic Life Center at Lake Springfield.
Silver jubilarians this year are Father Rodney Schwartz and Father Donald Patrick Gibbons. The golden jubilarian this year is Msgr. Michael Kuse. Celebrating 55 years of service this year are Father Philip Kraft, Father Ronald Trojcak, Father Jerry Wickenhauser, MM, and Father Joseph Zimmerman, OFM. Celebrating 60 years of service are Father Louis Schlangen, Father Henry Schmidt and Father Kenneth Rosswog, OFM. Celebrating 65 years is Father Sylvano Pera, OFM. And finally, celebrating 70 years is Father Vincent Elsen, OFM.
On the Friday of Easter Week, April 21, Bishop Thomas John Paprocki will ordain three men to the transitional diaconate for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois. The ordination will take place during 6:30 p.m. Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Recently, Robert “Rob” Johnson, Aaron Kuhn and Mark Tracy took time to share their thoughts on their upcoming ordinations.
On the weekend of March 4-5, which was the first weekend of Lent, 319 people from 62 places (61 parishes and the Eastern Illinois University Newman Center) came to the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception to take part in the Rite of Election of Catechumens and of the Call to Continuing Conversion of Baptized Catholics. They were accompanied by the priests, deacons, sponsors, godparents, families and friends who traveled with them.
Becky Bauerle, youth minister for Mother of Perpetual Help Parish in Maryville, has been accompanying young people to the March for Life in Washington, D.C., for nearly three decades, but this year’s trip really stands out, she said.
“This was my 29th year to go and I’m sure this year’s march was the largest march in history. It was huge,” Bauerle said. “Even the atmosphere was different. I talked to the vendors who were there, because they have a good idea about the crowds. They said this was an extra-large march and they thought there were more pro-life marchers than had been at the (protest) marches earlier in the month. And they said we were a lot nicer group.”
Parents of infants already know their babies to be special gifts, but this month many newborns in central Illinois will be getting a sweet little gift of their own simply because they were born in February.
That’s because three HSHS hospitals — St. John’s in Springfield, St. Francis in Litchfield and St. Mary’s in Decatur — are all recognizing heart month by having the tiniest patients raise awareness about preventing heart disease. Every baby born in these three hospitals during February will receive a red onesie that will help make parents and loved ones aware of heart disease.
At age 90, Louis G. Kubacki knows how important it is to read and appreciate the words penned by saints and church leaders. That’s why, last month Kubacki — who lives in the Joliet diocese — presented Bishop Thomas John Paprocki with a book of quotes for use in parish bulletins throughout the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois.
VIRDEN — In celebration of its more than 100 years of parish life, Sacred Heart Parish in Virden is releasing a pictorial history book as well as a companion DVD.
The book is titled Blessings Without Number. Parish secretary Marcella Rosier has compiled photographs, news articles and family stories to make up the 500-page soft-cover, full-color book. She credits Sacred Heart parishioner Joe Maynerich for collecting and labeling photographs from the beginnings of the parish, which was chartered in the early 1900s by Slovak immigrants. “It is really a scrapbook of our parish family,” says Rosier.
Last month the Office for Youth and Young Adult Ministry in the Department for Vocational Services hosted two events for young people: Diocesan Youth Days and the Diocesan Youth Conference.
Diocesan Youth Days took place from Nov. 6-10 and were hosted in different regions of the diocese, said Kyle Holtgrave, associate director for Youth and Young Adult Ministry. A total of 424 middle and high school students attended the Youth Days, which are meant to continue to build on St. John Paul’s vision of celebrating the young church.