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Clerics of Saint Viator

Summer 2005

Volume 10, No. 3

fter six-years of changing, growing, and learning under his skilled leadership, Saint Viator High School bids farewell to its beloved President/Principal. On May 22, Rev. Thomas von Behren, CSV, was installed as the 16th Provincial Superior for the Clerics of St. Viator, Chicago Province. Elected by his fellow Viatorians, Fr. von Behren replaces Fr. Charles Bolser, CSV as Provincial. While Fr. von Behren will not be involved in the day-to-day operations of Saint Viator High School, he will serve as the President of the Board of Governors. Fr. von Behren has selected Fr. Robert M. Egan, CSV, as his successor, with Eileen Manno and Dan Lydon serving as Associate Principals for the 2005-2006 academic year.


Much has happened at Saint Viator High School during Fr. von Behren’s tenure. The physical campus of the school changed with the addition of the front parking lot, new science labs, expansion of the Scanlan Center and the construction of the most impressive Boler Center. Teachers’ salaries have become some of the most competitive in the Archdiocese; tuition assistance awarded to students has almost doubled; the Heart of the Lion capital campaign raised $11.1 million making it the most successful capital campaign in school history; both girls’ and boys’ soccer brought home state championship trophies making them the first team sports to capture IHSA state titles; the fine arts department continued to thrive by offering new courses and remained committed to the theatre, dance and music programs; continued technological advances with computers in every classroom, teacher web pages and Internet based student information system …not to mention over twelve hundred students were educated and graduated from one of the best schools in the Northwest Suburbs.

Provincial’s Perspective ow is it going? Have you adjusted yet? Do you miss the school? These are the questions that have been coming my way nearly every day since May 22, the day I accepted the role as the new Provincial for the next four years. Before Fr. Thomas R. von Behren, I answer the above quesCSV, Provincial tions, I want you to know how privileged I am to be able to connect with you, our partners in mission. This column allows me to share the news, the excitement, the challenges, and yes, the grace that is so much part of the Viatorian story. Every three months, I hope to make the connections that allow you to capture the Spirit of what it means to be “Viatorian.”


As the new Council begins its ministry, I am struck with the depth of support and care that has been shown to us by the members of the Community. Offers of prayer

come daily to my office, expressing a deep sense of faith in God and in God’s Spirit – a Spirit alive within the works and life of the men and women who minister in the name of the Church and of Father Querbes, our Founder. So, how is it going? Are we adjusting? Do I miss Saint Viator High School? The answer is fine, yes, and very much! I thought that maybe the first few weeks of my new “job” would be rather slow, even a bit boring. Nothing could be further from the truth! So much is happening at the Province Center. We have just completed the annual retreat led by Fr. David Reid, SS.CC., Provincial of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts. We are preparing the materials and physical set-up for the Provincial Assembly that will be held July 12, 13, and 14 at Saint Viator High School – where over 80 Viatorians will be gathering to celebrate, pray, discuss, and renew the bonds of friendship and community life. We are in discussions about a Master Plan for the building and grounds of the Province Center. We are planning a visit to Belize and Bogota. Finally, the Provincial Council will get away for a few days in July to plan for the next four years as we begin our term of service for the Province of Chicago. continued on page 2

Along with your prayers, your financial assistance is greatly appreciated by the Viatorians to continue our ministries in the United States as well as overseas. If you would like to assist us financially in our ministries, gifts may be sent to: Viatorian Development Office 1212 East Euclid Ave. Arlington Heights, IL 60004 847-398-6805 You may designate where your gifts will be used, or you can trust us to distribute the funds where they are needed most at a particular time. As a non-profit and tax- exempt organization, the Viatorians are very grateful for your prayers and financial support in “educating for the future.” For Wills and Bequests: Clerics of St. Viator an Illinois Corporation

The Nazareth League of Prayers was established by the Clerics of St. Viator to give our friends the opportunity to share in the prayers of the Viatorian Community. Viatorian priests and brothers remember all those who have asked for our prayers and are grateful for the generosity and kindness of those who have supported our ministry. Once enrolled in the Nazareth League, requests are inscribed in a book of intentions and placed before the tabernacle in the renovated chapel at the Province Center. To take advantage of the Nazareth League of Prayers, you may request Prayer Cards for enrollment in the Nazareth Prayer League or simply order specific cards yourself. Inserted in each issue of VIATOR you may find an envelope that one may also use to list prayer intentions. You may request cards by calling 847-398-6805 or visiting us at

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As you can see, we are busy preparing for the future, responding to the present, and getting ready for our brother and sister Viatorians who will be coming back “home” for Assembly. I ask for your prayers as the new Provincial Council begins its work. On behalf of Br. Michael Gosch – Assistant Provincial; Fr. Robert Erickson – Provincial Treasurer; Frs. Daniel Nolan and Richard Rinn – Councilors, and myself I thank you for continuing to partner with us – serving the People of God through education, prayer, liturgy, and pastoral outreach. Together we partner with God in raising

communities of faith, vibrantly living that faith on a day-to-day basis – remembering that with God, “All Things Are Possible.” In St. Viator and Fr. Querbes,

Rev. Thomas R. von Behren, CSV Provincial

Common Thread Unites Jubilarians As one who entered the religious life straight from high school, Fr. Durkin looks at those entering the religious life today and sees some of the advantages. He believes the maturity is good, but the numbers just aren’t there. “When I joined the Clerics, there were 240 men in the order,” said Fr.Durkin. “Today there are just 90 men.”

Many knew at an early age that sacrificing a material world for the greater glory of God was their destiny. Reflecting on the choices our Jubilarians made throughout their lives, their love of Christ is the common thread that unites them as priests. Answering the call of God, they were given a gift of vocation. Fr. Patrick Durkin, CSV, who is celebrating 60 years of religious life, attended Our Lady of the Angels grammar school in Chicago. While at Quigley Seminary, he continued to serve Mass as an alter boy for his parish daily. Often times the celebrants were Viatorians from St. Philip High School. Knowing these priests and wanting to belong to a religious order of teachers, Father Durkin chose to enter the Viatorian novitiate.

Fr. Edward Anderson, CSV, who is celebrating 60 years of religious life, became a Viatorian priest on June 6, 1950. He got to know the Viatorians in White Plains, N. Y. where he was attending a college seminary. He had made up his mind that he wanted to go into teaching and the Clerics of St. Viator would be his choice. Fr. Anderson has had a rich and full life as a high school teacher, principal of Gorman High School in Las Vegas, a campus minister with the students of University of Nevada- Las Vegas, a professor of moral theology at the seminary level, the pastor of St. Viator in Las Vegas and the rector of the Cathedral in Las Vegas.

After teaching high school chemistry, biology and math at Spalding Institute, Peoria, as well as at schools in Chicago, Springfield and Arlington Heights, Fr. Durkin decided to shift his calling to mental health. He earned a degree in clinical pastoral care, and served as a chaplain or director of pastoral care at Manteno State Hospital, Manteno, Ill. and other mental health hospitals in San Jose and Fullerton, Cal.

However, he was most honored when, after the Second Vatican Council, he was one of the first provincials of a religious order to be selected by the men of the order rather than appointed by the superior general. “It makes you feel very honored to be elected by your peers,” said Fr. Anderson.

“Years ago when I was first ordained a priest, I helped at the tuberculosis hospital in Chicago by filling in for the vacationing priests,” recalled Fr.Durkin. “ I always had the notion that I would like to work with patients who were in crisis and work with their families. When I started at Manteno, there were 3,200 patients. The year I left, there were only about 600 patients and they were scheduled to live in neighborhood homes. It was the beginning of the homeless society.”

Fr. Hugh Robbins, CSV, knew he wanted to be a priest in grade school. He is celebrating 60 years of religious life. After attending three years at Quigley Preparatory


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In Memoriam Ill.; and St. Mary’s Hospital, Kankakee, Ill. Please remember Fr. Czerwionka in your prayers.

Fr. Francis T. Czerwionka, CSV died Tuesday, April 26, 2005, at Resurrection Life Center, Chicago. He was 81 years old. Born in Chicago, Fr. Czerwionka was a World War II combat soldier who served under General George Patton. His Division relieved the 101 Airborne during the Battle of the Bulge. He went on to receive battle stars for five major war battles, which included: Rome-Arno, Southern France, Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe.

Fr. Norbert P. Bibeault, CSV died on Sunday March 6, 2005 at Life Center of Paradise Valley, Las Vegas. He was 74 years old. Born in Hartford, Conn., Fr. Bibeault professed his First Vows with the Clerics of St. Viator on August 15, 1949 and was ordained a priest on August 15, 1956.

On February 3, 1948, Fr. Czerwionka professed his First Vows with the Clerics of St. Viator and was ordained Viatorian priest on February 7, 1959.

Fr. Bibeault accepted his first assignment as a teacher at Cathedral Boys’ High School in Springfield, Ill. From 1957 to 1959, he taught at Spalding Institute in Peoria, Ill. He also taught at Alleman High School in Rock Island, Ill.; St. Patrick Central High School, Kankakee, Ill.; and Bishop Brady High School in Concord, N.H. Fr. Bibeault also served as the principal of St.Viator High School during the 1967-68 school year. For the last 35 years, he served as a faculty member at Bishop Gorman High School, Las Vegas. Please remember Fr. Bibeault in your prayers.

Fr. Czerwionka served as a teacher and assistant dean at Cathedral Boys’ High School (1951-52) in Springfield, Ill.; counselor and guardian at Isle of Hope, Savannah Ga.(1955-56); from 1959 to 1962, he served as associate pastor at St. Patrick’s Church in Kankakee, Ill. and taught at St. Patrick’s High School. He was a chaplain at Manteno State Hospital, Manteno, Ill.; Jacksonville State Hospital, Jacksonville, Ill.; St. John’s Hospital, Detroit, Mich.; Northwest Community Hospital, Arlington Heights,

In the Footsteps of our Founder Fr. Querbes Restores the Church in Vourles sorry aspect” and is “in need of much repair.” It was falling into ruins in 1805. Another seventeen years of neglect only added to its decrepitude.

Father Louis Querbes began his pastorate at St. Bonnet, Vourles, November 1, 1822. The challenges he faced were enormous.

Fr. Querbes began some repairs immediately. Easter Monday, April 1, 1823 the city architect of Lyons came to Vourles at the request of parishioner, M. Magneval, to draw plans to restore the Church. By August the drawings were finished. Mayor M. Magand, also a parishioner, traveled to Paris seeking a modest building subsidy from the government. Delays occurred. Meantime, Fr. Querbes began the most urgent repairs and renovations from his modest parish reserves and the generosity of the Comte Sisters. By January 1825, St. Bonnet was partially restored.

His early pastoral ministry evolved around four initiatives: the spiritualization of his few faithful parishioners; the evangelization of Vourles; the restoration of the physical church; the introduction of liturgical music and liturgical reforms and establishing educational opportunities for girls and boys. These priorities were to engage his attention and energy throughout his pastorate. He began immediately to spiritually nourish his parishioners. Utilizing Advent (1822) and Lent (1823), he began to instruct, admonish, and deepen their faith. Many returned to the sacraments at Easter 1823 – not all, but enough to form the nucleus of a rejuvenated parish.

Fr. Querbes continued to plan for a new Church. Evacuations were made, plans were refined, estimates solicited; minor improvements were made in 1825-1826. In December 1826 new plans were presented to the Prefect of Lyons, who approved and secured government funds from Paris and Lyons to begin construction in 1827. The Church underwent a radical architectural change and interior transformation.

His effort to evangelize the village and the surrounding area became the lifetime commitment of his 38 years as pastor in Vourles. He was eloquent and severe at the pulpit but compassionate and understanding as pastor. Fr. Querbes’ liturgical efforts favored plainchant and parish participation through hymns. By 1825, he had already compiled and published Hymns For the Use of Parishes.

St. Bonnet was the first rural church in the Prefecture to be restored. It was a source of gratitude for the growing parish, of civic pride in Vourles and admiration in the countryside. On May 5, 1828, Bishop Gaston de Pin, Apostolic Administrator and later Archbishop of Lyons solemnly blessed the Church. A restored St. Bonnet was the most visible achievement of Fr. Querbes in his first six years in Vourles.

Restoring the Church was a necessity. A report on the Material Conditions of Parishes prepared for the Archdiocese of Lyons in 1805 indicated the exterior and interior of the Vourles Church “presents a

Fr. Querbes would continue deepening the spiritual life of his parishioners, encouraging villagers to religious practice. Next, Fr. Querbes would address the pressing needs for education among the young people of Vourles. - Leo V. Ryan, C.S.V.


Around the Province Provincial Chapter Report – 2005 Every six years, Viatorians from throughout the world gather in Rome to set a direction for our Community and our Congregation. This meeting, known as the General Assembly/ Chapter, will be held in a year from now, during the month of July 2006. Representatives of every Province, Region, and Foundation gather together to pray, discuss, and make decisions that will guide the Viatorian Community for the coming years. At the end of these meetings, the Chapter will elect a Superior General who will lead the International Viatorian Community. In preparation for this important meeting, the Provincial Chapter of the Chicago Province met on April 28th and 29th in Arlington Heights to begin the dialogue regarding the issues that will be presented to the delegates next summer. These issues include: redefining the mission of the Viatorian Community, clarifying the relationship among vowed religious and Associates, identifying the specific characteristics of Viatorian Spirituality, directing the Vocational and Formational efforts within the Community, and organizing more effective structures that will make these components more interrelated. After two days, the Chapter concluded its work and formulated responses to each of the issues

identified above. Additionally, the Chapter decided that a “regional coordinator” would represent each of the four regions within the Chicago Province so that an identified person on the local level would be empowered to gather the local communities for dialogue, prayer and communal celebrations. The Chapter hopes that this new structure will help to connect each region, especially the Viatorians living in the West, to the on-going works of the Province. The Provincial Chapter will meet again in the July to evaluate the Provincial Assembly and again in October, continuing its on-going work within the Province.

ing extravagantly.” 120 guests joined Fr. Von Behren and the members of his Council, Br. Michael Gosch (Assistant Provincial), Fr. Robert Erickson (Provincial Treasurer). Fr. Daniel Nolan (Councilor), and Fr. Richard Rinn (Councilor) for a reception held at the Wellington.

A New Council

New Appointments

On May 22, 2005, the newly formed Provincial Council of the Chicago Province accepted their call to leadership during a celebration of the Eucharist at St. Viator High School Alumni chapel in Arlington Heights, Illinois. Before fellow Viatorians, family members and friends, Fr. Thomas von Behren made his profession of faith as the 16th Provincial of the Province. During the homily, he encouraged those in attendance to “live extravagantly” by “loving extravagantly, forgiving extravagantly, and shar-

Fr. Egan has been appointed President of Saint Viator High School in Arlington Heights.

Boler Center Dedication Arlington Heights, Ill. On Saturday, April 23, Saint Viator High School celebrated a “dream come true” with the grand opening of their new three-story, 50,000 square foot multipurpose athletic facility, The Boler Center, which sits neatly between the current Jeuck Auditorium and Cahill Gymnasium. This $9 million facility includes a new practice gym, indoor running track and state of the art weight room in the Murphy Wellness Center, two new classrooms, multipurpose rooms that will be used for everything from dance classes, cheerleading and poms with full-length mirrors and a real built in barre to wrestling and baseball with mats and batting cages. There are also new PE locker rooms for the students, storage space for coaches and teams. This new space will help alleviate space constraints that Saint Viator has struggled with since the institution became co-educational in 1988. “I can’t tell you how much we need this building. The Boler Center will serve many programs, both academic and athletic, enabling ALL of our students to benefit. It will truly be a MULTIPURPOSE facility,” said counselor and long-time varsity boys basketball coach Joe Majkowski.


Fr. Eck has been appointed to begin as Pastor of St. Viator Church in Chicago. Fr. Dan Nolan has been appointed Director of Novices. Fr. Ken Morris has been appointed Assistant Director of Novices.



Answers to your questions.

With the election of the new Provincial, Fr. Thomas R. von Behren CSV, much is being said about the work he and his Provincial Council are accomplishing. But what is a Provincial Councilor? And what does he do? Our second Q&A gives a quick definition of the role of a councilor and the council itself.


What is a Provincial Councilor, and what does he do? The Provincial Council is an organization, which assists the Provincial Superior in the government of the Province. It is composed of the Provincial Superior and four Provincial Councilors, one of whom is the Assistant Provincial (Br. Michael Gosch, CSV).

The Provincial Councilors assist the Provincial Superior in the exercise of his pastoral service of authority in the Province. They act in solidarity and in communion with him. They share his responsibilities and authority according to the determinations of the Constitution and the General Regulations. The Provincial Councilors thus collaborate with the Provincial Superior in either a deliberative or a consultative capacity.

Taizé Prayer Taizé, in the south of France, is the home of an international, ecumenical community of Brothers committed to material and spiritual sharing and simplicity of life. Since the late 1950’s, many thousands of young adults worldwide have found their way to Taizé to participate in prayer and reflection. Taizé prayer incorporates chants of praise, scripture, and petition. During Taizé prayer, the assembly repeatedly sings each chant with the choir for several minutes. The repetition helps connect those gathered to God, while disconnecting them from worldly stress. The Viatorians invite our readers to join with us for Taizé reflection and quiet prayer. We gather together monthly to pray for our ministries, our world and ourselves.

Upcoming Dates Arlington Heights, Ill.: 2nd Wednesday of each month, 7:30 - 8:30 p.m. August 10, September 14 and October 12 • Viatorian Provincial Chapel, 1212 East Euclid Ave. Kankakee, Ill.: 1st Sunday of most months, 7 - 8 p.m. Alternating between St. Patrick Church and Maternity BVM Church

Rising to the challenges of a changing neighborhood In a widely changing neighborhood, a century old parish stands tall as a testament to the Viatorian commitment to those it serves. With stunning blue stain glass windows, St. Viator Church and Elementary School sits on a stretch of land at Addison and Pulaski on Chicago’s North Side. This 118-year-old parish serves about 1500 families of which 25% are native Spanish speakers. Although there is one Spanish Mass offered each Sunday, all classes are taught in English, regardless of the diversity of languages spoken at home. Being in the city gives the parishioners and students many opportunities for volunteer work. The Night Ministry program, open to adults and young people alike, attracts enthuastic participation by many parishioners. Another ministry run by the parish provides volunteers for REST Shelter. 15 years ago, Br. Corey Brost requested that the parishioners of St. Viator help feed the homeless. Since that time, as many as twelve teams of volunteers have responded without missing a single week. At times the language barrier makes it difficult to involve both the native Spanish and English speaking families. There are a number of events focused on overcoming this obstacle, thereby bringing together all demographics of the community. One aspect that consistently brings everyone together is St. Viator Elementary School. With over 300 enrolled Pre-Kindergarten through 8th graders, the school was thrilled to earn top marks in the Chicago Archdiocese School Improvement Plan. Looking to the future, both the school and parish are hoping to increase their combined efforts in stewardship and increase community awareness of offered programs. Grade school Principal Kathleen Kowalski notes that the school is very proud of its Art Zone Program, a monthly parent-run volunteer program. A specific historic artist is featured, and all students have an opportunity to learn about the artist and then create their own art in that artist’s style. At the end of the year, each student has two pieces of his or her own art mounted and displayed for an all school art show. Although the parish does not subsidize the school, it does contribute to tuition assistance. An ongoing goal is to further solidify the relationship between St. Viator School and Parish. Viatorians currently serving the parish are Fr. John Eck (Pastor), Fr. Bob Bolser (Parochial Vicar), and Br. Dale Barth (Deacon).

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Clerics of St. Viator 1212 E. Euclid Avenue Arlington Heights, IL 60004-5799

Quarterly Newsletter – Summer 2005




Is published quarterly by the Development Office of the Clerics of St. Viator, Chicago Province Email: Website: Our purpose is to present the mission, ministries, news, and needs of our Community to those who continue to show interest in and support of our works.

Provincial: Rev. Thomas R. von Behren, CSV

Editorial Board: Rev. Thomas R. von Behren, CSV Br. Michael Gosch, CSV Br. Leo V. Ryan, CSV Br. Donald P. Houde, CSV Dianna Ehrenfried Fran Guziel

Editor: Adam N. Clementi If you are receiving multiple copies of this newsletter and/or wish to be removed from our mailing list, please call our Development Office at 847-398-6805 or fax your request to 847-398-6247.

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Seminary, Chicago, he met Fr. Munsch, CSV at his parish, St. Lucy’s in Chicago. Fr. Munsch arranged a meeting for him with the Viatorians. He later went to the novitiate in Bourbonnais, Ill., attended St. Ambrose College, and completed his theological studies at St.Thomas Seminary in Denver, Co. With a M.A. in Drama from Catholic University, he taught speech and drama at many high schools, along with English and religion. “As a teacher, I was able to be close to my students,” said Fr. Robbins. “I tried to guide them to become gentlemen and to be respectful of authority.” During his 53 years as a priest, he is most proud to spread the faith of Jesus Christ, especially through Sunday Mass. He is always there for parishioners at St. Theresa in Palatine and St. Hubert in Schaumburg, Ill. Father Robbins believes that vocations are on the decline because parents don’t embrace the idea of their children entering the religious life. “Today, we are very materialistic and we are not willing to make sacrifices,” explained Fr. Robbins. “Those who do enter the religious life are to be commended. I say, more power to them.” Father Richard Pighini, CSV wanted to devote his life to Christ at an early age as a Dominican brother. His father told him “no” and at the time, so did the Dominicans. He was just 13 years old. After completing high school and college, he joined VISTA, a domestic Peace Corp program, which led him to Hawaii, where he taught for two years.

Upon his return, he taught language arts and art to junior high school students at St. Patrick School in Kankakee, Ill. It was there that he met his mentors, Fr. John Corredato, CSV, and Fr. William Carpenter, CSV. He was back in the religious environment that he had wanted all along as a young boy. “God had plans for me,” said Fr. Pighini. Joining the Viatorians as a religious, he taught at Bishop McNamara High School, Kankakee. Ill. and at Sacred Heart-Griffin High School in Springfield, Ill. After serving the people of St. Patrick Parish in Kankakee, Ill. for over 10 years, he accepted the pastorate of Maternity B.V.M. Parish in Bourbonnais, Ill. Father Pighini believes that when he entered the Viatorians, sacrificing one’s life for Christ was paramount. “It wasn’t uncommon to give your life for the good of others,” he recalled. Today, he’s not sure that’s the case for those entering the religious life. “We live in a culture where we don’t live without. We’re told we can have it all and do it all. Wealth, a career, material possessions are all ours. The choice to enter a religious life becomes more difficult today when you believe you can have it all.” Fr. Pighini is celebrating 25 years as a Viatorian religious.

Viator Newsletter 2005 Summer  

Vol. 10, No. 3

Viator Newsletter 2005 Summer  

Vol. 10, No. 3