On the weekend of Feb. 29-March 1, the first weekend of Lent, approximately 200 men, women and children from 50 parishes in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois came to the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception to take part in the Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Conversion. That number included catechumens, uncatechized Catholics and baptized Christian candidates. They were accompanied by priests, deacons, RCIA leaders, sponsors, godparents, families and friends.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Amid the throng of hundreds of thousands of people carrying banners and signs in the nation’s capital on Jan. 24 at the 47th annual March for Life were close to 500 members of the faithful of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois. The Springfield diocese was represented by Bishop Thomas John Paprocki, a number of priests, religious sisters and seminarians, other adult chaperones and of course, hundreds of youth.
Bishop Paprocki met the pilgrims in Washington, D.C., celebrating a Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica, visiting with various diocesan groups and then taking part in the march.
While many of us have been contemplating and beginning to carry out our New Year’s resolutions for 2020, Father Daniel Bergbower spent several weeks in 2018 and 2019 fulfilling his own personal pilgrimage resolution by completing the Camino de Santiago, known in English as the Way of St. James.
The pilgrimage is an epic journey of 500 miles, leading pilgrims to the Shrine of the Apostle St. James the Great in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia in northwestern Spain, where the remains of St. James are buried.
On Dec. 3, Msgr. David Hoefler, vicar general of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois, was one of the speakers at the 12th annual Nativity dedication ceremony at the Illinois State Capitol. Several dozen people from various Christian churches were on hand in the rotunda to pray and sing together and to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.
GREENFIELD — With chilly weather already here and Thanksgiving just around the corner, our thoughts naturally turn to warm meals, good fellowship and counting our blessings. This year St. Michael parishioner Martha Rawe is giving thanks that in Greenfield, a soup ministry that she helped to start has been warming people’s stomachs — and hearts — for 10 years and counting.
On Oct. 30, the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception was filled with enthusiastic students and faculty members who traveled from all over the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois for the annual Mission Mass. Since many of the students had never been to the Cathedral, some of the groups took tours of the church before Mass and waited patiently afterwards to have photos taken with Bishop Thomas John Paprocki, who was the main celebrant.
CARLINVILLE — The 30th annual Family Camp for persons with special needs and their families and friends, was, as usual, a fun time for everyone involved, reports Elaine Vonderheide, who directs the weekend every year. This year’s camp took place Sept. 21-22, at Lake Williamson Christian Center.
Attendees and their guests participated in a variety of activities, including swimming, square dancing, playing mini golf, creating crafts and singing. The camp closed with Sunday Mass, celebrated this year by Father Chris House, rector of Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception Parish and vicar judicial in the Office of the Tribunal.
PEORIA HEIGHTS ― Earlier this year, June Kriesel, a member of Immaculate Conception Parish in Mattoon, received the Rite of Definitive Promises with The Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites at St. Thomas the Apostle Church in Peoria Heights. Her Carmelite name is Mary Therese of the Immaculate Heart.
On an otherwise dreary and drizzly Sunday afternoon, the sun appropriately came out to shine through the windows of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception just as long-married couples from all over the diocese renewed their commitment to one another.
It was a touching moment for many at the Sept. 8 Mass for Couples Married 50 Years or More, and seemed especially so for Bob and Kathy Kulhan, who traveled to Springfield from Greenville, where they are members of St. Lawrence Parish. “I looked up at my husband and he was crying,” said Kathy after Mass. “Then I got so (flustered) that I couldn’t find what I was supposed to read.
EDWARDSVILLE — The Springfield Diocesan Council of Catholic Women (SDCCW) will hold its annual convention on Wednesday, Sept. 25. Different deaneries traditionally take turns hosting the event. This year the Alton deanery is hosting, so the convention will be at St. Boniface Church, 110 N. Buchanan in Edwardsville.