Perpetual Vow Ceremony Draws a Crowd
Provincial Perspective ince also. At present our confreres to the south are in the process of writing Particular Regulations that we hope will eventually lead to their becoming a region, which is the next step to becoming a province. All our schools, north, south and west are alive and well. They are very successful in educating the next generation.
It seems hard to believe that just over a year has passed since I assumed this office upon the election of Fr. Robert M. Egan, CSV, as Superior General of our congregation. It has been a year filled with lots of activity. Here in the Midwest we are seeing the signs that fall is quickly arriving. The days are already perceptibly shorter, and winter is around the corner. That is the normal cycle of things. We see that normal cycle in the life of the Viatorian Community as well. Since taking office, four of our confreres have died. We have departed from leadership roles in two parishes. We are getting older and more of our men are retiring. For many, this would be a sign of decline, but for me; it is exactly the opposite. It is part of the normal cycle, the ebb and flow. As you read through the pages of this newsletter, you will see that we are, in fact, growing. Five new brothers have entered the Community, one brother has made his perpetual profession. There have been quite a few new associates making their first commitments and even more renewing their commitments to walk with us and to share in our lives.
In a Mass steeped in tradition, Br. Peter Lamick, CSV, made his commitment to the Viatorian Community — and religious life — permanent. On June 12, in the Alumni Memorial Chapel at Saint Viator High School and before a gathering of nearly 150 people, Br. Lamick made his perpetual vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Br. Lamick is the latest Viatorian in the Province of Chicago to profess perpetual vows, and he joined other Viatorians around the world who committed themselves to the Viatorian mission. Five religious brothers professed first vows this year in Colombia while two Viatorian priests were ordained in July in Haiti.
None of us know what the future holds. I am filled with hope that the Spirit will continue to guide us. I do know that the Viatorian Community of the future will not look like the Viatorian Community of today. It is with sincere gratitude that I, in the name of the Province, thank all of the senior members of the province and all of those who have gone before us for providing us with examples of deep faith and devotion. They have handed on to us a community that is flexible enough to adapt to change and to respond with the resources we are fortunate to have at our disposal.
On Sept. 3, we opened a new high school in North Las Vegas. For many this seems like an odd venture when so many schools are closing their doors. For some, it seems too risky in these uncertain times. In religious life, security, stability and certainty have never been the goal. At times, in order to be true to our mission and our calling, we must take risks trusting that the Holy Spirit will guide us in reading the signs of the times.
Our ministries to the immigrant community and to those seeking asylum here in the United States have had a great impact. They have become a model that has gained national recognition. Great strides have been made in the Colombian portion of the prov-
Rev. Daniel R. Hall, CSV Provincial Clerics of St. Viator, Province of Chicago
3 Perpetual Vow Ceremony Draws a Crowd
11 First Viatorian Associates – 20 Years Later 12 From the Archives: A Viatorian Connection
4 New Professions in Colombia
13 The Cause for Sainthood Advances
5 An Engineer, Teacher and Viatorian Brother 6 Vocation Ministry Is in Your Hands! 7 The Newest Viatorian School Opens
Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV, Provincial, extends his hands over Br. Peter Lamick, CSV, during his perpetual vow ceremony.
This fall, Br. Lamick returned to teaching at Saint Viator High School, in its Scanlan Center, supporting students needing help with college prep academics. He spent part of his summer break running the school’s Service & Song Camp, which immersed 90 teens into projects in the surrounding area.
In blessing Br. Lamick as a consecrated religious, Fr. Hall echoed the words of Pope Francis and urged him to go out and make a difference in the world. “Peter, make it your focus to go out and wake up the world,” Fr. Hall said.
“You’re living the vision — and putting faith into action,” Br. Lamick told teens on their first day.
Br. Lamick first met the Viatorians when he attended Saint Viator High School and graduated in 2007, before earning his undergraduate degree in history at Benedictine University in Lisle. He would go on to earn a master’s degree in education at DePaul University.
Br. Lamick also serves as head freshman football coach and as an assistant basketball coach, reflecting his own experience — and calling — at Saint Viator.
Over the past few years, Br. Lamick has served at different Viatorian ministry sites, including pastoral work at parishes in the Bourbonnais/Kankakee region and the Henderson/Las Vegas area, as well as in Campus Ministry at Saint Viator High School, while working on peace and justice initiatives in Chicago and at the Viator House of Hospitality.
Fr. Hall added that not only had Br. Lamick committed himself to the Viatorian Community for life, but that the community had as well. “Peter, we promise to walk with you on this journey,” Fr. Hall said, “as you deepen your commitment to the Viatorian Community.”
Many of Br. Lamick’s family members and classmates from Saint Viator High School attended.
In this Issue: 2 Provincial Perspective
Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV, Provincial, officiated at Br. Lamick’s perpetual vows celebration. He had played an important role in Br. Lamick’s vocation, influencing him as a teacher and a coach at Saint Viator High School.
14 Saint Thomas More Catholic Community
Celebrates the Viatorians
15 Celebrating Our Jubilarians:
8 Q & A with Associate Kim Martinez
Fr. James Fanale, CSV Fr. Thomas Long, CSV
9 Volunteering with Asylum Seekers in El Paso
16 Around the Province
10 Meet Some Viatorian Associates
Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV
Editor: Fr. Thomas Long, CSV
Director of Communications: Eileen O’Grady Daday
Eileen O’Grady Daday Br. John Eustice, CSV Br. Michael Gosch, CSV Mr. Daniel Masterton Associate Joan Sweeney
Layout and Design:
Dianna Ehrenfried, Visualedge, Inc.
An Engineer, Teacher and Viatorian Brother
New Professions in Colombia
community and Fr. Hall, and his council for their support and my participation in the congress.”
The number of vocations continues to increase in Colombia, where Viatorians have served since 1961.
Br. Jhobany reflects many modern day religious, who discern a call to religious life after beginning their professional careers. It was while working in Colombia as an engineer that he began to think about a vocation.
The latest is Br. Elkin Mendoza, CSV, who professed his first vows on Aug. 29 in the chapel at Colegio San Viator in Bogotá. Br. Mendoza professed his vows before Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV, Provincial, in a ceremony that drew many of the professed and associate Viatorians to gather at the colegio.
“I was working with poorer communities, building homes for people out in the countryside,” Br. Jhobany says. The chance to assist these people with new homes opened his eyes to the needs of the marginalized and he sought a way to make a difference for even more people.
Br. Mendoza is the fifth religious brother to profess first vows this year. He oversees all of the science labs at the colegio, which is certified by the International Baccalaureate Program and bilingual, and led by Mr. Carlos Trebilcock, Principal.
Consequently, he sought to find a religious community invested in social justice — and teaching. It was Fr. Frank Enciso, CSV, who introduced Br. Jhobany to the Viatorians in 2010. One year later, he joined the community.
Back in January, Fr. Hall officiated at another vow ceremony in Bogotá. This time, Br. Jhon Alexander Avellaneda, CSV; Br. Edwin Alfoso Barreto, CSV; Br. Parmenio Enrique Medina, CSV; and Br. Juan David Ramirez, CSV, all professed first vows. The ceremony came after they had completed a year of formation at the Viatorian novitiate run by the Latin American and Caribbean Council in Puente Alto, Chile, under the guidance of Fr. Eduardo Millán, CSV, Novice Master. “It’s sign of life,” Fr. Hall said of all the new religious brothers. “It’s a sign that we’re growing — and thriving.” The number of professed Viatorians in Colombia continues to grow.
Br. Jhobany Orduz had a little time to enjoy some sightseeing after presenting his research at a world conference.
Br. Jhobany Orduz, CSV, holds a rare place in the Viatorian Community. He is a trained civil engineer, with a master’s degree in roads and infrastructure, and a specialization in education administration.
Br. Elkin Mendoza, CSV, formally signs his first vows before Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV, Provincial.
Br. Juan David Ramirez, CSV, Br. Parmenio Enrique Melina, CSV, Br. Edwin Alfonso Barreto, CSV, and Br. Jhon Alexander Avellaneda, CSV, profess vows.
He professed his perpetual vows last year and now teaches math and engineering at Colegio San Viator in Bogotá. However, Br. Jhobany continues to do research, and this summer he was a presenter at a worldwide conference in Portugal. Br. Jhobany was among nearly 600 researchers from 35 countries who attended the Congress on Numerical Methods in Engineering. His presentation was an intriguing one, as he made the case for using recycled plastic to build roads, highways and other pavement structures. Specifically, his lecture was called “Numerical Simulation of Strengths and Deformations in a Pavement Structure of Polyethylene Terephthalate.”
A year before Br. Jhobany professed his perpetual vows, he spent time in Arlington Heights meeting members of the Viatorian Community while becoming fluent in English. He now speaks both languages at the bilingual Colegio San Viator, where he returned last year. “I hope to show my students and fellow teachers that they do not need to be afraid of doing research,” Br. Jhobany says. “I envision having small groups in our schools where students could begin research very soon. This would allow them to learn some valuable research skills before going to college.”
His research drew the interest of engineers from Lithuania, Mexico, Germany and Greece who discussed with Br. Jhobany the materials and models needed to make this project real. They pointed to the numerical methods used in civil engineering already that show this type of plastic material can withstand weight and deformations, making it durable enough for pavement structures. As a result of his presentation and unique topic, Br. Jhobany received an invitation to present the next part of his studies at the same congress when it convenes in 2021 in Spain and again in 2022 in Helsinki, Finland. “I am happy to have the opportunity to combine my religious life with research and teaching,” Br. Jhobany says. “I am grateful to my
Br. Jhobany Orduz, CSV, professed his perpetual vows in 2018.
The Newest Viatorian School Opens
Vocation Ministry Is in Your Hands!
After years of planning, fundraising and dreaming, Cristo Rey St. Viator College Preparatory in North Las Vegas opened Sept. 3 before its formal dedication on Oct. 17. Its 96 freshmen entered in dramatic fashion, walking in under a balloon arch and led by the school’s president, Fr. Thomas von Behren, CSV. They walked down the new hallways and admired the wall of fame, so to speak, embellished with each student’s name highlighted in gold.
Cristo Rey St. Viator College Preparatory High School
place learning through being immersed in a professional setting and making life changing connections. The corporate partner then covers nearly 65% of their tuition.
Numbers of vocations in Colombia continue to increase.
Did you know that vocations to religious communities are actually increasing — even as the church faces crises and decreased attendance in some places? According to the National Religious Vocation Conference, religious communities have seen an increase in inquiries, an increase in new entrants to the communities, and an upward trend in the number of men and women professing perpetual vows. The Viatorians have seen this trend, too. In the Province of Chicago, the community has welcomed four pre-novices, five brothers professing temporary vows, and one brother professing perpetual vows. Additionally, Viatorians are accompanying a few other men in discerning an application to the community. Vocation ministry in dioBr. Peter Lamick embraces his Provincial and ceses and religious commumentor, Fr. Daniel Hall, after his vow ceremony. nities run through vocation directors who accompany those discerning a call to the priesthood or religious life, but Viatorian Vocation Ministry does not end there. The Viatorians believe that everyone who is a part of the wider Viatorian Community can be a vocation minister and has a key role to play. The Office of Vocation Ministry in the United States is led by Br. John Eustice, CSV, assisted by Mr. Dan Masterton.
At the start of the school year, 25 area corporations and nonprofit groups had committed to participating in the program so far, school officials say, including MGM Resorts International, Bentar Development, United Way of Southern Nevada, Nevada HAND and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.
While Br. Eustice is the one intentionally focused on walking with potential applicants as they discern a call to the Viatorians, everyone who is part of the Viatorian Community and draws inspiration from the Viatorian mission in Christ is invited to be active vocation ministers, too. So, what are some action items? Pray regularly that God will give grace to discerners to respond to God’s invitation, perhaps starting with the prayer included here. Act locally to encourage your parish to post and publish vocational resources and consider starting a vocations committee (we can help you get started!). A Prayer for Vocations Good and loving God, through the generations, You called numerous men to adore and love Jesus as Viatorian religious. Embolden the minds and hearts of young men today to act upon your invitation to vowed Viatorian life. Inspire parents, mentors, friends, and all members of the Viatorian Community to be the voice of your invitation. Saint Viator, pray for us!
Engage people you believe could have a calling to religious life or priesthood — humbly and lovingly ask them if they’ve considered it, perhaps by using three questions suggested by Fr. Michael Himes: Does it bring you joy? Are you good at it? Does the world need it? In this way, the entire Viatorian Community — working together — can continue to foster vocationst
Students admire their names displayed in the main hallway.
“We are filled with excitement and joy,” Fr. von Behren said. “This is a Viatorian school, welcoming a special and gifted group of students. We are blessed, indeed.” Br. Rob Robertson, CSV, school counselor, added simply: “We are over the top with excitement.” Leading up to the historic first day, faculty meetings took place off-site as well as a three-week workforce development program for students, to help prepare them for the professional environment they would be entering in one day a week. Students learned to build a resume as well as other professional and academic skills.
Fr. Thomas von Behren, CSV, President, shakes hands with students on the first day.
Francisco Aguilar, Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Chief Operating Officer, added that students looked forward to “draft day” that first week, when they were matched with their employers.
When possible, students were placed with a company or industry that matched their interests. They began with a variety of tasks, mostly clerical and administrative, with the opportunity to take on more advanced responsibilities over time.
“It has been an incredible experience to see this day become a reality,” Aguilar said.
“Through a rigorous college preparatory curriculum, integrated with a relevant work study experience,” Fr. von Behren says, “students graduate ready to succeed in college and in life.” It really is the school that works, administrators like to say.
Cristo Rey St. Viator is the latest to open in the Cristo Rey model, which now includes 37 schools across the country and more than 12,000 students. What sets the schools apart is the combination of a rigorous, college preparatory curriculum with a four-year corporate work study program.
“This educational initiative is so in line with the charism of our founder, Fr. Louis Querbes,” says Fr. Mark Francis, CSV, President of Catholic Theological Union. “May this school grow and thrive to change lives and proclaim the gospel to young people in Las Vegas.”
Associate Deborah Perez leads the school’s Corporate Work Study Program. By working one day a week, students benefit from workwww.viatorians.com 6
Q & A with Associate Kim Martinez Two years ago, the Viatorian Community established a scholarship fund at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago in memory of Fr. John Linnan, CSV, a former president of the school. The scholarship was intended for Viatorians — both associates and professed — pursuing graduate work in theology. Associate Kim Martinez is the first to receive the scholarship. Martinez works in Campus Ministry at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas. She began course work this fall for a master’s degree in Pastoral Ministry in Justice Studies.
Q . In the description of the scholarship, it specifically
encourages Viatorians “committed to preparing for ministry and leadership in service to the church with the ecclesial vision of Vatican II and Pope Francis.” Is that a statement that resonates with you?
Most definitely. In a world that feels increasingly polarized, it is so necessary to invite and share the journey with disciples who seek to heal division in all communities.
Q . What drew you to the Viatorians and ultimately
become an associate?
A. I became acquainted with the Viatorians while still in
Q . Tell us about your intended degree and how you think
it will help you in your work with teens at Bishop Gorman?
A. I plan to focus on social justice. I believe that it is more important than ever to help young people understand that there is so much pain and suffering in the world that they can work to change their world. They need to be encouraged to develop their voices to speak out and work for change.
Q . How excited were you to find out you would be recipient of this scholarship, funded in the name of a beloved Viatorian, who accomplished so much as a pastor and academic?
A. I was so honored and happy to be the first Viatorian
Associate to receive the John Linnan Scholarship. In the summer I made my definitive commitment and it was a very graced and important moment for me. As a Viatorian, carrying forward the charism and vision of Fr. Querbes is a part of who I am.
high school in Springfield, IL, and they continued to be a part of my adult life and journey. I credit many of those relationships with helping me to make decisions that would change the course of where I was headed. When the opportunity to become an associate became a reality, it seemed a very natural next step for me.
Q . How does your role as a Viatorian associate come through in your work in Campus Ministry?
It is essential in my role as Campus Ministry, because it is who I am. This year we celebrated the tenth anniversary of the Viatorian Youth Congress. I have had students participate each year, and after 10 years of watching these young people become adults it is amazing to see the things that they are doing and know that we have been a part of shaping these incredible human beings.
In June, you made a definitive commitment as a Viatorian associate. Does receiving this scholarship deepen your commitment to carrying out the mission?
A. Yes, more importantly, it gives me the tools to move forward in carrying out the mission of Fr. Querbes.
Volunteering with Asylum Seekers in El Paso During August I volunteered at Casa del Refugiado in El Paso, Texas, a shelter for asylum seekers released by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Everyday ICE brought between 100 to 200 people, the vast majority of whom were families or pregnant women, to the Casa where they stayed one or two nights while their sponsors made the travel arrangements for their loved ones to join them. Upon arrival, they felt anxious and scared. However, after we explained that they were not in government custody but rather guests in a shelter run by church volunteers and other people of good will, the relief in their faces was striking. Many times they expressed great joy when they then heard they would receive a change of clothes, a towel and toiletries.
Bishop Christopher Glancy, CSV, (center) relaxes with other volunteers in the break room in Casa del Refugiado in El Paso.
While the volunteers come from all walks of life, we shared the strong desire to reach out to our fellow human beings in a compassionate manner, especially to those who have suffered so much on their journey to the U.S. Our tasks were many and varied. Since I speak Spanish, I had the opportunity to welcome them when they arrived, help them fill out the intake registration forms and assist them in making phone calls to family members around the country. At times, I accompanied them to the airport or bus station to assist in purchasing their tickets, passing through TSA security, and explaining what connections they would have to make on their journey. Other volunteer duties included processing donations, organizing clothing for the families, distributing toiletries, blankets and towels; serving meals; recruiting residents to clean the shelter and preparing care packages with food and water for their journey to their sponsor families. Being there demonstrated clearly that the treatment they received in detention was dehumanizing and scandalous. Some said their only food was Raman noodles and the cooking water was only lukewarm, leaving the noodles uncooked. Children did not have enough space to play. Everyone slept on the cold, concrete floor. All this while armed officers ordered them to do various tasks. Casa del Refugiado contradicts that by offering a compassionate, caring shelter; space for children to color and play; and basic necessities such as shampoo and clean clothes. Furthermore, they can walk freely in the neighborhood.
The Church plays an important role. Each weekend I celebrated Mass with the immigrants where we praised our God and strengthened each other in prayer. I also had the chance to visit with Bishop Mark Seitz of El Paso, who spoke about the current diocesan ministry with the immigrants and his plans to open a shelter in Ciudad Juarez to help with the burgeoning numbers of Central Americans being turned back at the U.S. border. The pictures in the news convey the crisis at the border. The human suffering endured by the most vulnerable, challenged me and, I believe, others as to what our values are at this critical time. The needs are ever changing and the people of God are creating new ways to respond to the needs of our brother and sister asylum seekers at the border. Most migrants arrive at the shelter with their children and they immediately enjoy the welcoming environment. Background Image: Murals brighten up the shelter, including this one featuring children’s handprints.
by Bishop Christopher Glancy, CSV
Meet Some Viatorian Associates Viatorian associates come from all walks of life. Consider three of the newest associates to make their first commitments: A kindergarten teacher, an auditor with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and a retired administrative secretary.
has deepened her faith life. “It’s important for me to be a part of a community that has a shared vision and commitment,” Kim said.
First Viatorian Associates — 20 Years Later
As archivist for the Viatorian Community, Joan said she draws inspiration from the lives of the men who lived and created the Viatorian history. “Being an associate strengthens my faith in God, in humanity and in myself,” Joan said. “It gives me hope.”
Fr. Daniel Hall accepts the commitments of new Associates Paula Wasser, Julie and Robert Lampley.
Robert and Julie Lampley, and Paula Wasser, all parishioners of St. George Church in Bourbonnais, committed them- Las Vegas Associates Anthony Gugino, Megan Landis, and Deborah and Romeo selves as associates to the Viatorian Community for a period Perez recommit themselves to the Viatorian Community for three more years. of two years. A similar ceremony took place in September in Las Vegas, Their commitments came during the provincial assembly last when four associates renewed their commitment for another summer, and before Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV, Provincial, and three years. They included Anthony Gugino, who is involved in youth and music ministry at St. Viator Catholic Commumore than 70 members of the Viatorian Community. nity; Megan Landis, a naturopathic physician, and Deborah and Romeo Perez. Deborah heads up the corporate work study program at the new Cristo Rey St. Viator College Preparatory High School, and Romeo is a practicing attorney in Las Vegas.
“I envision myself living out the rest of my life as a Viatorian,” said Juliann, who directs the religious education program at St. Thomas More Catholic Community in Henderson, NV. “Being an associate has become an important part of my identity.” Kim Martinez, who serves in Campus Ministry at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas, said that being a Viatorian www.viatorians.com
The Province of Chicago celebrated an important milestone in August — the 20th anniversary of including lay associates into the Viatorian Community and making them co-heirs of the mission.
religious working together to advance the Viatorian charism, just as Fr. Louis Querbes had envisioned the community back in the 19th century when he founded the Clerics of St. Viator.
“Our community has been greatly enriched by the incorporation of our associates,” said Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV, Provincial. “They are a blessing to us all.”
Viatorians had debated the question of associates for years, but its roots date back more than 50 years, to the postVatican II years and its wide-sweeping changes that resulted in the church and religious communities transforming to keep in step with the modern world.
It was Associates Mary Jane Bucher, Mary Finks, Marilyn Mulcahy, John Ohlendorf and Reisha Raymond who were the pioneers. They made their first commitments in 1999, in the Alumni Memorial Chapel at Saint Viator High School.
(L-R) Fr. Daniel Lydon, CSV, Association Director, with Associates Kim Martinez, Joan Sweeney and Juliann Dwyer
During the same ceremony, three Viatorian associates made their definitive commitments. Juliann Dwyer, Kim Martinez and Joan Sweeney all have been members of the Viatorian Community for 10 years.
The first Viatorian Associates were Marilyn Mulcahy, Reisha Raymond, John Ohlendorf, Mary Finks and Mary Jane Bucher.
Associates Rosy and Paul Hartz, and Clairmarie Slaveck of Las Vegas make their perpetual commitments.
Rounding out the group, were three more who made their definitive commitments as Viatorian associates. They included Clairmarie Slaveck, a retired business manager with the Las Vegas Diocese, and Paul and Rosy Hartz. Paul is a public safety officer in Las Vegas, while Rosy directs campus ministry and youth ministry at St. Viator Catholic Community.
All five were from the Bourbonnais/Kankakee region and they arrived at that point after working in parish ministry with Viatorians and after discernment as pre-associates. Little did they know that they were paving the way for a new way of thinking about the meaning of community — and for the 86 current associates and another eight pre-associates now in formation. Prior to that, the Viatorian Community consisted solely of religious brothers and priests. However, with the first associates, the community expanded to include lay and 11
In 1984, Viatorians in the Province of Chicago formally began to explore the possibility, and in 1999 the first associates joined in the Viatorian mission, spirituality and community life. A stone etched with the names of the first five remains embedded in the path at the historic grotto on the grounds of Maternity BVM Parish in Bourbonnais, the first place where Viatorians arrived in 1865.
The Cause for Sainthood Advances
From the Archives: A Viatorian Connection Did you hear that Blessed Cardinal John Henry Newman was canonized a saint on Oct. 13? A conversation with Br. Donald Houde, CSV, about Newman’s canonization led to the following story.
Every day, retired Viatorians living in the Province Center offer up a prayer during their morning Mass for the beatification of their founder, Fr. Louis Querbes. Now, their prayers may be answered. Some 12 years after Fr. Querbes was declared a “Servant of God” in Lyons, France, and two years after the beatification process officially began in Rome, there is news to report.
Cardinal Newman, a 19th century British theologian, poet and Catholic priest — previously an Anglican priest — was dedicated to education. Pope Benedict XVI said in 2010 that Newman’s “approach to education was not only of profound importance for Victorian England but continues today to inspire and enlighten many all over the world.” He is a guiding light for our times and many Viatorians, as educators of faith, are still dedicated to his teachings. Reflecting on Cardinal Newman’s writings and influence on Viatorians brought back memories for Br. Houde, especially of his good friend and confrere, Fr. John E. Linnan, CSV, (1934-2018). Br. Houde and Fr. Linnan’s friendship dates back to the early 1950s, while in the Viatorian Novitiate. They corresponded with each other while Fr. Linnan was a theology student in Louvain, Belgium from 1958-1965. Br. Houde recalled that Fr. Linnan’s thesis for his Doctor of Theology from the Catholic University of Louvain was on Cardinal Newman.
In early October, Fr. Robert M. Egan, CSV, Superior General, told the worldwide Viatorian Community that the cause of Fr. Querbes is advancing.
A painting of Cardinal John Henry Newman hangs prominently in the Viatorian Province Center.
It’s interesting how a current event, i.e. Newman’s canonization, can establish a Viatorian connection and then bring Viatorian history to light. The connection becomes table talk in the dining hall for the retired priests and brothers here at the Province Center in Arlington Heights and requests to the archives for more information and photos are sure to follow.
After hearing from the Postulator for the Cause of Fr. Querbes, Msgr. Paolo Rizzi, he learned that the Commission of Cardinals of the Congregation for the Cause of Saints recommended that the cause take the next step, advancing Fr. Querbes from a Servant of God to being named Venerable. “In a meeting, they established that Servant of God Louis Querbes had lived in an uncommon but heroic degree, all the virtues of faith, hope, charity, fortitude, justice, prudence and temperance, as well as the evengelical councils,” Fr. Egan said in a statement to the worldwide Viatorian Community.
Br. Houde said, “Linnan was a scholar” and his doctorate thesis on Cardinal Newman certainly reflects that fact. Fr. Linnan studied the theological characteristics of evangelicalism in depth and how it influenced John Henry Newman’s early years before converting to Catholicism. In 1965, he wrote and published two large volumes -- 578 pages in total -- titled “The Evangelical Background of John Henry Newman, 1816-1829.”
Consequently, on Oct. 2 Pope Francis authorized the Congregation for the Cause of Saints to issue a decree declaring Fr. Louis Querbes as Venerable. The announcement was made publicly in Rome on Oct. 3. “The decree by Pope Francis opens the way to beatification,” Fr. Egan added. “However, for this we will need the recognition of a miracle, through the intercession of Venerable Fr. Louis Querbes. Let us join our prayers, in seeking the intercession of Fr. Querbes.”
Fr. John Linnan and Br. Donald Houde remained lifelong friends after starting in the Viatorian novitiate together in 1951.
About a year ago, Br. Houde donated the letters he received from Fr. Linnan while he was studying in Louvain, to the Viatorian Community Archives. Each letter is handwritten and numerous pages long, spanning many days of Fr. Linnan’s experiences there. These letters obviously mean a great deal to Br. Houde and reveal their lifelong friendship. This story is just one example of what can be uncovered from fond memories of the Viatorian confreres. The dinner table topic of Cardinal Newman’s canonization is, very special for Catholics around the world, but the back story of the Viatorian connection is what touches our heart.
Br. Donald Houde, CSV, examines letters from his friend, Fr. John Linnan, CSV, back in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
Joan Sweeney, Viatorian Associate and Archivist
Back in 2007, on the day the Vatican declared Fr. Querbes a Servant of God, Fr. Mark Francis, CSV, then Superior General, celebrated a Mass in the church Fr. Querbes had built in Vourles, France. “I am convinced Fr. Querbes is speaking to us today,” Fr. Francis said. “He is telling us to be confident in the future; that our faith in Christ can help us to overcome any obstacle. God is with us!”
The gravesite of Fr. Louis Querbes in Vourles, France includes flags from the many countries where Viatorians now carry on his mission.
St. Thomas More Catholic Community Celebrates the Viatorians One of the core principles of the Viatorians’ vision statement is to build up communities of faith. That commitment was on full display in late June, when Viatorians gathered with parishioners at St. Thomas More Catholic Community in Henderson, NV, to celebrate the many years they walked together in faith. “It’s a celebration of 35 years of shaping the community — and of great ministry,” said Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV, Provincial. Bishop Leo Thomas, center, of the Diocese of Las Vegas concelebrates Mass at St. Thomas More Catholic Community with many of the Viatorians who served the parish.
with an intimate parish community of 15. They later moved to the Palm Mortuary Chapel to accommodate as many as 200 parishioners. Fast forward 35 years, and the parish now serves thousands of families. Bishop Thomas credited its growth to the Viatorians.
Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV, Provincial leads a procession of Viatorians into the Mass.
“The Viatorians have left a special and lasting mark on the parish,” Bishop Thomas said, “and a distinct legacy, that if carefully fostered and preserved will continue to influence the community for generations to come.”
The opening procession included the many Viatorians who had led the parish as pastors and associate pastors, including: Fr. Thomas Long, CSV, founding pastor, as well as Fr. Daniel Nolan, CSV; Fr. Patrick Render, CSV; Fr. Mick Egan, CSV; Fr. Lawrence Lentz, CSV; Fr. Alan Syslo, CSV and Bishop Christopher Glancy, CSV. Concelebrating with them was the new pastor, Fr. Bede Wevita, from the Diocese of Las Vegas. Associate Pastor, Fr. Tokha T. Hoang, C.Ss.R., arrived later in the summer. Bishop George Thomas of the Las Vegas Diocese officiated at the liturgy. He commended the Viatorians for nurturing a tiny mustard seed of a faith community into the vibrant parish it is today. “For three-and-a-half decades, the parishioners of Henderson have been the beneficiary of the selfless and visionary presence of Viatorian leadership,” Bishop Thomas said. “With and through their loving care, the parish has grown and flourished from a nascent community of 15 Catholics to a vibrant community of 6,000 families.” Bishop Thomas credited the lay women and men who had petitioned the bishop of the Reno-Las Vegas Diocese at the time, Bishop Norman McFarland, to open a Catholic parish in the rapidly growing city of Henderson. He recalled how the first Masses were celebrated at a preschool, using borrowed altar supplies and folding chairs,
Celebrating Our Jubilarians Fr. James Fanale
Fr. Thomas Long
Fr. James Fanale, CSV, celebrated his 50th jubilee as a priest last summer at the parish he has led as pastor the last 23 years, St. Anne in rural St. Anne, IL. Fr. Fanale began his Viatorian ministry as a teacher of English, first at Bishop McNamara High School in Kankakee, before Fr. James Fanale, CSV moving to the college ranks, including the University of Illinois, St. Mary-of-the-Woods College in Terre Haute, IN, and DePaul University in Chicago.
Fr. Thomas Long, CSV, celebrated his 50th jubilee as a priest this summer at the provincial assembly with the Viatorian associates and professed in attendance. He was ordained to the priesthood on May 17, 1969, but it was his seminary years that remain a searing memory. Fr. Long and his classmates were studying at Fr.Thomas Long, CSV the Viatorian seminary in 1968 in Washington DC, when they were living witnesses to the fires and riots that broke out after Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated. “We were firsthand witnesses to the deep divide in our country,” Fr. Long says.
Along the way, he earned an undergraduate and master’s degree in English at Catholic University of America in Washington DC. He ultimately would go on to earn a doctorate in medieval English literature at the University of Illinois.
Thus, his lifelong commitment to social justice was born. Fr. Long taught at Bishop McNamara and Alleman high schools, before going into parish work. He was an associate pastor at St. Viator Parish in Chicago and left in 1984 to become the founding pastor of St. Thomas More Catholic Community, located in Henderson, NV.
Fr. Fanale would serve as archivist for the Viatorian Community, from 1990 to 1996, researching the history of the founding of the Province of Chicago. In 1996, Fr. Fanale headed to serve as pastor of St. Anne, where he accepted not only the assignment of ministering to parish families, but to carry on the parish’s much loved tradition: the St. Anne Novena.
In 1994, Fr. Long earned his master’s degree in social work and spent the next nine years in California working with members of the HIV/Aids community, with the homeless and in administration of a recovery program.
“This is a place of grace,” Fr. Fanale says, “where many have found peace and healing.” Viatorian associates
Specifically, he credited the Viatorians with intentionally forming a community of missionary disciples, while advancing the vision of the Second Vatican Council, which emphasized the transformative power that comes when clergy and laity collaborate together. “In that spirit, you have become a collegial, collaborative parish,” Bishop Thomas said, “and since your founding you have taken seriously your co-responsibility to carry out the saving mission of the church.”
Viatorians have run the historic St. Anne Church since 1920 and as a result, they have continued the tradition started by its French Canadian founders, of holding a novena to St. Anne, the mother of Mary, for nine days leading up to her feast day on July 26.
When he returned to the Viatorian Province Center in 2003, Fr. Long became involved in the Viatorians’ communications efforts. He continues to edit both its external and internal newsletters, but he also serves in nearly one dozen social justice initiatives, mostly dedicated to accompanying immigrants and working toward immigration reform.
Fr. Fanale retired this summer, but he stayed on at the parish long enough to participate in the novena.
His commitment can be seen every month, when he drives 60 miles from Chicago to the Jerome Combs Detention Center in Kankakee, to pray with detained immigrants being deported that day.
“People still like the concept of a devotion to St. Anne,” Fr. Fanale says, “because she’s an older person and a grandmother. They find comfort that someone knows their aches and pains and the difficulties in life they have.”
“As I look back over the last 50 years,” Fr. Long says. “I am grateful to the Viatorian Community for its support and encouragement to utilize various ways to serve humanity and to work for a better world.”
Bishop Thomas also commended the Viatorians for bringing their deep commitment to Catholic social teaching to the parish, as well as strong preaching and educational efforts. “The Viatorian Community has created an unparalleled spirit of welcome here,” Bishop Thomas added, “where no one is a stranger for very long.”
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Newsletter – Fall 2019
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Around the Province... Fr. Richard Rinn, CSV, and St. Viator Parish School in Las Vegas continue to be at the forefront of the inclusion movement in education. To date, it is the only fully inclusive Catholic school in the state of Nevada. Its MICAH Program serves children with Down syndrome, autism, Richard Rinn, CSV, with altar server, cerebral palsy and epilepsy. This year, Fr. Luke Sylvestri, who was the first student the program expanded to include a in the MICAH Program. full-time aid to accompany one of the students, thanks to a scholarship grant from the Viatorian Community. “When we designed this program we wondered what we could do for these students,” Fr. Rinn says. “What a big surprise it was to see what they did for us. They’ve changed us to be a more gentle, more giving community.” Br. Michael Gosch, CSV, wears many hats in the Viatorian Community, but last month he added another, when members of the Interfaith Community for Detained Immigrants honored him with their Unsung Hero Award. Br. Gosch was honored for his Br. Michael Gosch, CSV work with the Chicago-based Interfaith Community for Detained Immigrants, including the creation of the Post Detention Accompaniment Network as well as visiting detained immigrants at McHenry County Jail. Fr. Daniel Belanger, CSV, leads two rural parishes in the Bourbonnais/Kankakee region: St. George Church in Bourbonnais and St. Mary Church in nearby Beaverville. In an effort to rise above all of the negative headlines and tensions in the world, Fr. Belanger suggested focusing on the positive by immersing themselves in a devotion to Mary for the next year. Both parishes eagerly accepted and Fr. Daniel Belanger, CSV, at St. George Parish.
launched their respective years over the first weekend in September. At the start, Fr. Belanger encouraged parishioners to plan events that examine how Mary’s life continues to speak to them as they head into the year 2020. Fr. John Peeters, CSV, has served in the Bourbonnais/Kankakee region for 20 years, including the last 12 as pastor of St. Patrick Church. But his work in the area goes beyond parish boundaries. Last summer, Fr. Peeters was recognized by the Dennis J. Smith Legacy Foundation, as the recipient of its Caring for the Community Award. Fr. John Peeters, CSV, displays his award. The award was created in 2007 in memory of “Denny” Smith, to recognize people who serve the greater Kankakee County area with dignity and selflessness. Its inscription applauded Fr. Peeters’ many years of service to the people of Kankakee County — and around the world. Associate Donna Schwarz worked for four different Provincials over the course of her 24 years with the Viatorian Community, including Fr. Charles Bolser, CSV, Fr. Robert Egan, CSV, Fr. Thomas von Behren, CSV, and Fr. Daniel Hall, CSV. All of them looked to her for her steady hand in coordinating countless aspects of the Provincial’s office, as well as her vast network Associate Donna Schwarz poses with three of the four of relationships within the Provincials she served, including Fr. Daniel Hall, Fr. Robert Egan and Fr. Thomas von Behren. (Fr. Charles Bolser, missing.) Viatorian Commnity. In short, she made their roles easier in ways too many to count. She retired at the end of June, after a receiving a standing tribute from the Viatorian Community gathered at the Provincial Assembly. She and her husband, Associate Tim Schwarz, now are enjoying their retirement in Texas. She will be missed.