GLEN CARBON — With COVID-19 keeping so many people isolated from family and friends, 5-year-old Matilda Kassel has been doing her part to provide happiness to folks who might not otherwise have much contact with the outside world. Shortly after the pandemic began, with the help of her mother, Matilda began sharing her talent — sending out her youthful and beautiful artwork to brighten the days of others.
Tom Purcell of Effingham will be serving as an intern in the Office for Pro-Life Activities and Special Ministries from September 2020 through May 2021. In his new role, Purcell will be visiting and talking to parishes and principals to increase awareness about the annual Diocesan Campaign for Justice and Hope (DCJH) program and ways people can help increase understanding and support for DCJH.
As the new school year begins this month, eight Catholic grade schools in various areas of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois are counting on new principals to lead the way into the future.
Brandi Borries, superintendent of Catholic Schools, has been meeting and speaking to these principals and says she is excited to see the direction they will be taking both students and staff members. “We are blessed with an enthusiastic group of new administrators who answered the call to be a part of Catholic education in our diocese,” Borries said. “They bring a wealth of great experience to our schools and I am very much looking forward to working with them.”
Three priests, three lucky dogs and an abundance of puppy love — could it get any better? Let’s take a look at the men who make a great case for priests having pets: Msgr. Leo Enlow, with his German Shepherd mix Abbie; Father Joseph Havrilka, with his mixed-breed Boško; and Father Steven Arisman, with his Dachshund Bella.
BRUSSELS — Last year, when Sarah Kinder was taking then 99-year-old Marie Held home after Saturday evening Mass at St. Mary Church in Brussels, Held made a special request. “Marie lives across the street from me. Her mother and my grandmother were sisters,” Kinder explains. “One night she said, ‘If I live to be 100, check to see if the Mass on that Saturday is available for me.’”
When Father Chris Comerford was a boy growing up in Decatur, the warm months brought with them a plethora of good times — school was out, he celebrated his birthday on June 9 and best of all, Cardinals baseball was under way.
“One of my favorite joys of the summer was going down to St. Louis to see the Cardinals play. I’ve always been around the game of baseball. It’s my favorite sport,” he says.
PLEASANT PLAINS — Bill Mowder, a parishioner at St. Augustine Parish in Ashland, has found a significant calling in his retirement. As coordinator of Helping Hands Food Pantry in Pleasant Plains, he and other volunteers make sure that about 60 families a month get the food they need to survive and thrive.
On June 19, Bishop Thomas John Paprocki is set to ordain Chris Trummer, a parishioner at St. Mary of the Assumption Parish in Neoga, to the transitional diaconate for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois. He is the son John and Margaret “Bitsy” Trummer, has an older brother Johnathon “Jonny” and two younger siblings, twins Katrina and Deacon Michael Trummer. This summer, he looks forward to becoming an uncle to twins — his sister’s children.
Every spring Catholic Times recognizes priests who have served in and are living in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois and are observing important jubilees sometime in the calendar year. Celebrating a silver jubilee in 2020 are Father Mariadas Chatla and Father Jeffrey Goeckner. The golden jubilarians are Father Don Blaeser, OFM, Father Michael Grawe, OFM, and Father Dennis Koopman, OFM. Celebrating 70 years are Father Peter Donohoe and Father Carl Schmidt. Congratulations to these seven fine priests!
Vicki Schmidt of Springfield may be feeling like she needs the patience of a saint as she awaits the eventual dedication of a very special statue that she and her family commissioned two years ago as a tribute to her parents Robert J. and Donna Bozarth Schmidt. The dedication of the life-size bronze statue of St. Teresa of Calcutta was to have taken place on April 26, at Blessed Sacrament Church in Springfield, however the coronavirus pandemic has put the ceremony on hold. For the time being, the statue is being safely housed in an indoor facility.