CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF DODGE CITY
Monthly Notes from Bishop Brungardt
and the Diocesan Staff
February 2015 --- Vol. XIII, No. 2
From Most Rev. John B. Brungardt, Bishop of Dodge City:
►Lenten World Working–We begin Lent, with a desire to hear God’s Word with hearts that are open, receptive as fertile soil. Three times in the Letter to the Hebrews we are urged not to harden our hearts to God’s Word.
Imagination might just be the way to ensure soft, not-hard hearts this lent. A healthy, vibrant, child-like imagination can be most useful in the Christian life. A sanctified imagination helps us look beyond our own experience and see what God sees.
Brandon J. O'Brien says: If reason changes our minds, the imagination changes our hearts. It helps us feel the truth, not just know it. We can know full well what we ought to do. But touching the imagination can inspire us with a vision of God's reality that will compel us to act.
So how do we strengthen our imaginations? Here’s one idea: Begin a Word Working group as a family or with others in your parish. Reflect on God’s Holy Word on a weekly basis. Let the Word spark your imagination as we remember, reflect, and choose to change or act. All you will need will appear in the February 8th issue of the SKR.
Remember Jesus loves us more than we can ask or imagine!
►Call to Continuing Conversion and the Rite of Election–The Call to Continuing Conversion and the Rite of Election is at 3:00 pm, Sunday, February 22nd at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Dodge City.
Click here to complete this form. This form MUST be completed whether your parish will or will not be participating in the Call to Continuing Conversion and the Rite of Election, Sunday, February 22nd. Please list the first and last names of the catechumens to be elected and the candidates to be called from your parish. Also, estimate and include the number of family, friends, guests, etc., who will be present for the Rite and/or meal. Respond by February 5th.
Catechumens who are elected will sign the Book of the Elect at this Rite. If you have people sign a “parish” book of the elect, you might want to consider what the Rite of Sending says: “…if the signing of the elect is to take place in the presence of the bishop, it is omitted here.” (#539) I would ask that you allow this ritual action of signing the book of the elect to be reserved for the Rite at the Cathedral.
I look forward to greeting each of the elect and candidates at the reception that follows the Rite.
►Annual Chrism Mass–This year are celebrating the Ordination Anniversaries of Fathers Warren Stecklein, Mike Helms, and Khoi Nguyen (25years); and Father Benjamin Martin and Deacon Richard Rondeau (40 years). We are observing the 60th Jubilee of Religious Profession of Sister Angela Erevia (Director of Hispanic Ministry). We are honoring the Staff and Board of Catholic Social Service as they celebrate their 50th Anniversary. We will also honor Sr. Veronice Born for her years of service as Diocesan Intercessor.
Please begin considering your Parish Representatives.
Please remember that our Annual Chrism Mass is Thursday, March 26th, 11am, Cathedral.
► Stewardship Corner– Stewardship Renewal 2015: Ideas for this month:
February: Yes, we are now beginning Stewardship Renewal 2015-2016! Our conversion to the Lord is on-going. We continue with Follow-up with our parishioners: assisting them to get involved in the life of the parish, accompanying them in their trials and sufferings, reaching out to the least of our brothers and sisters, bringing the saving message of Jesus to all. Your dedicated Stewardship Council (or faithful Pastoral Council in smaller parishes) should review/evaluate last season’s renewal process and plan for improvement for this coming year’s renewal. We are grateful disciples of God, who gives us “a future full of hope” (Jeremiah 29:11). Bishop John.
► Ordained Priestly Vocation Corner –February: Brother priests: We have had four very successful Andrew Dinners so far, with our final one on February 8 in Hoisington. Many thanks for your invitation of, accompaniment of, and witnessing to these guys. We pray that the high school boys and single men who participate may deepen their humble listening, generous accepting, and zealous following of our Lord Jesus. Thanks to Fr. Charles Seiwert, Fr. Bob Schremmer, and Fr. Anselm Eke for hosting these important vocation events. Thanks to Fr. Wesley Schawe, Fr. Ted Stoeklein, Fr. Rene Labrador, Becky Hessman, the Knights of Columbus, the parish vocation committees, and many others for making these Andrew dinners possible. Bishop John.
►Prayer and Action Beginning–I am very happy that Prayer and Action is coming to the Diocese of Dodge City this summer. Prayer and Action had its very beginning in the Diocese of Dodge City with a mission work week in Garden City some years back through the collaboration of the Dominican Sisters and Lea Ann Scott in Garden City. It’s time that it has come home.
Prayer and Action provides meaningful opportunities to high school aged students and their adult leaders to do mission work right here within the boundaries of our own diocese. Although it is awesome to think globally, and to participate in mission fields around the world, it is also important to realize that there are many people within our own communities who are in need of assistance. A mission trip experience has a wonderful way of uniting groups in Christ, and inspiring the youth to grow in their faith.
Prayer and Action sessions last five days, with students arriving on a Sunday evening and then staying until the next Friday morning. Throughout the week the students will paint, clean, do yard work, and perform other meaningful tasks, for the poor, handicapped, and the elderly. The students will spend the week in an atmosphere, free of distractions, which will foster their faith, ideas of service, and love of Catholic values. Each session will also allow them to get to know other high school students from other parts of the diocese who share in their Catholic beliefs.
The Prayer and Action experience will be facilitated by the mission team that will consist of a seminarian, as well as other dynamic young adults. This team will meet the students and adult leaders on Sunday evening and guide all participants through the week. There are approximately 30 participants in each session. These sessions will be held in Garden City, Ness City and County, and Saint John and Stafford County. I am grateful to the local contacts who are helping us make this happen. Students’ housing for the week will be located at parishes, sleeping in sleeping bags or on air mattresses throughout the week. Food preparations will also be taken care of at the housing site by the students, adult leaders, and mission team. Every parish within the diocese is invited to bring as many or as few of their high school students as they wish to participate in the program. Prayer and Action also asks that for every six youth, one adult leader also attend. Adult leaders need to comply with Diocesan Safe Environment policies (background check and Protecting God’s Children Session. They will share the same experience as the youth and are asked to be positive role models throughout the week’s activities.
Cheyenne Becker from Pratt and Michaela Gleason from Meade are students at K State and are leading up our Diocesan effort at Prayer and Action for Summer 2015. Soon a video will be available featuring Cheyenne and Michaela sharing their passion for Prayer and Action. They are also willing to come to your parish and especially your youth group to share about Prayer and Action and invite participation.
The fee for each participant (youth and adult) is $100.00 for the week.
By the way, the name Prayer and Action, comes from a speech that was given by Saint John Paul II. In speaking to a group of high school students in the Philippines in 1995 he said: "Look to Mary to see how to respond to Jesus' call. First she kept all things, pondering them, in her heart. She also went in haste to serve her cousin Elizabeth. Both attitudes are essential parts of our response to the Lord: Prayer and Action. That is what the church expects of her young people."
"Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts"…(Hebrews 3:15)
►Confirmation Schedule– has been finalized. Click HERE to see the schedule. If there are any errors or if you need to update the language of Mass, please contact the Office of the Bishop immediately at 620/227-1525.
►Weddings on August 15–August 15 falls on a Saturday this year. Although the obligation for the faithful to attend Mass is dispensed, August 15 is still a solemnity. Since ritual Masses are not permitted on a solemnity, it is possible to have a wedding Mass using the August 15 readings and the nuptial blessing, or the Rite of Marriage outside of Mass may be celebrated. If a wedding has already been scheduled on August 15 and these options are not satisfactory, please call me for consultation.
From Sr. Janice Grochowsky, CSJ, JCL, Chancellor:
►Annual Parish Reports–The templates for the Annual Parish Report were emailed to pastors and parish secretaries in early January. The completed forms will be due February 27, 2015. The forms will also be available on the Chancellor page of the diocesan website: http://www.dcdiocese.org/chancellor . The deadline is important because I take the data sent to me to complete the annual report each diocese submits to the Vatican.
►Change in Pastoral Handbook– At their November 18 meeting, the Presbyteral Council recommended and Bishop John approved, an increase of the retreat allowance paid by the place of assignment from $225 to $350 effective January 1, 2015. This allowance goes toward the cost of a retreat made by a priest when his retreat is not taken with the diocesan priests in June.
From Fr. Wesley Schawe, Chair, Presbyteral Council:
► Click HERE for the Notes of the January 20 meeting. The next Presbyteral Council meeting will be held Tuesday, February 17.
From Mark Roth, Director of Development:
► Fruit of the Vine – Work of Human Hands-You may recall in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s that the diocese sponsored a program called “God’s Little Green Acre”, a program to support seminarian education in the Diocese of Dodge City.
The program has recently been resurrected, but with a few more options. The program is now called “Fruit of the Vine - Work of Human Hands” and offers two ways to participate:
Fruit of the Vine is for individuals who would like to pledge profits from their earthly labors, such as profits from crop production, sale of livestock, oil production, wind generation profits…etc.
Work of Human Hands is designed for individuals or businesses who would like to pledge a portion of their business profits, annual income or simply give a cash donation to support our seminarians within the Catholic Diocese of Dodge City.
Participation in the program will not only support our seminarians, but it will also provide a reminder to others who see your plaque or sign to pray for vocations, and will encourage others to participate as well. Please prayerfully discern supporting seminarian education in the Diocese of Dodge City through “Fruit of the Vine - Work of Human Hands” by completing one of the applications (Click here for Applications and more information) and returning it to me at your earliest convenience. If you know of others who might be interested in participating, please list their names as well so we can contact them too.
Thank you in advance for your generous support and consideration of this program. If you need further information or if I can be of assistance to you in any other way, please feel free to contact me.
►2015 World Meeting of Families–“Love is our mission; the family fully alive”: It is with great anticipation and joy that we cordially invite you to the 2015 World Meeting of Families, September 22nd through 27th at the Philadelphia Convention Center in Philadelphia PA. Since its inception by Saint John Paul II in 1994, the World Meeting of Families has sought to strengthen the sacred bonds of family across the globe. Join us for a week of spiritual enrichment, as we discuss the multifaceted issues facing families today during the various keynotes and breakout sessions.
You will hear practical talks from a wide variety of engaging speakers on the reality of the Catholic teaching on marriage and family life. With a central goal of strengthening families in very practical ways, this conference promises to give all who attend something to take home and share in their own faith communities. Following the event we will be blessed to celebrate Holy Mass with Pope Francis!
In order to manage the registration process, accommodations, travel, etc…we have engaged Canterbury Pilgrimages, an organization that has been specializing in Catholic Pilgrimages and events for over 21 years! With their assistance, we have three simple goals:
1. Encourage as many attendees as possible to join our diocesan pilgrimage to Philadelphia
2. Share the conference together as a diocese
3. Most importantly, return with a renewed sense of purpose regarding the family ministries we serve.
Click HERE for a copy of the brochure/registration form. We ask that you circulate these to as many people as you can and encourage them to join us in Philadelphia!
From Fr. Ted Skalsky & Deanna Johnston, NFP/Marriage & Family Life Team
► Marriage and Family Life on Diocesan Website– The diocese has created a new page for Marriage and Family Life Ministry. It can be found at http://www.dcdiocese.org/marriage-family-life. We hope to update this page with resources and articles that are helpful to families as well as those who work in marriage and family life ministries. If you have any suggestions or things you would like to see made available on this website please contact Deanna Johnston or Fr. Ted Skalsky.
From Eric Haselhorst, Director of Stewardship
►2014 Stewardship Tip– Stewardship renewal 2014 may be a memory but do remember the most important part…saying “THANK YOU”. Each person that responded to your renewal needs to be thanked by post card, phone call, or other personal way.
Also, various committees that have received names of people who would like to participate need to contact each person who expressed interest. Make sure each committee chairperson is following up with people who have responded “yes” I would like to share my gift. This is where stewardship renewal commonly fails. Do not let the important detail of the renewal process go unattended. Follow-up is desperately important.
►St. John Vianney Seminary– The 2015 Pilgrimage to St. John Vianney Seminary is on! Get all the details here http://www.dcdiocese.org/stewardship. Seating is limited. Please forward this information to your email list and post on your website and social media. This is definitely a worthwhile experience for those who support seminarians.
Check out what people are saying about previous Pilgrimages by clicking here http://youtu.be/7eHaAKoNDvk
From Georgina Paz, Employee Benefits Administrator:
► Remember a second lesson is to be taught (for grades 3-12) during the winter months of 2015. The reports are due February 28, 2015 to Georgina.
►Protecting God's Children Awareness Session–The next session is scheduled for Sunday, March 1st, 2015, from 2-5pm at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Plains in the church hall, 601 Superior St. This will be a Spanish session. Contact Carmen Puentes at 620-655-6701 for more information.
From Fr. Wesley Schawe, Director of the Office of Priestly Vocations:
►Pastors—would you like to have a Dodge City seminarian to be present and assist with your Triduum celebrations? They would be available in time for a Wednesday evening practice, and through your Easter Sunday liturgies. I ask that you feed them and provide a place for them to stay, but I leave it up to you if you wish to thank them in any other way. I hope you will consider this as an opportunity for you and him and your community. Please let me know if you would like to have one at your parish(es).
►Vocation Directors School Visits– Vocation Directors will be visiting the Catholic Schools during the month of February.
► Deaconate Ordination– Please keep Saturday, May 30th open for a tentative Deaconate ordination at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
From Coleen Stein, Director of Catechist Formation & Pastoral Ministry:
From Sr. Angela Erevia, MCDP, Director of the Office of Hispanic Ministry:
From Tim Wenzl, Archivist:
From Trina Delgado-Superindendent of Schools
►School Announcement–It is with much sadness that I inform you that our team of seven schools within our diocese will become six at the conclusion of this school year. Bishop Brungardt has accepted and approved the recommendation of Sacred Heart Parish Leadership to close Sacred Heart Catholic School Pratt, grades kindergarten through five, at the end of this academic year, 2014-15. Because of its strong enrollment, Holy Child Catholic Pre-school as well as the newly opened day care will remain open. School staff and parents were informed of this decision Friday afternoon, January 30. A letter from both Fr. McKinney and Bishop Brungardt was placed in the January 31/February 1 weekend bulletin informing parishioners of this difficult decision.
Please keep Fr. McKinney, principal Jim Wessling and their current staff and students in your prayers as they move forward to finish the remaining four months of school. We are thankful for the years of Catholic education that Sacred Heart Catholic Parish has provided to the both the parish and wider community.
Office of Youth Ministry and Religious Formation-Steven Polley
►Totus Tuus– As you are aware Bishop Brungardt has made the decision to have the diocese do a full summer of Totus Tuus. There are seven weeks of Totus Tuus throughout the summer and I am pleased to announce that five of the weeks are spoken for. We have the week of June 28 – July 3 open as well as July 19 – 24. If you would like for your parish to host a week of Totus Tuus please let Steven Polley know as soon as possible. Truly this is a program that benefits not only the young people who attend, but the parish as well.
Also, it is with great excitement that I am able to share that the decision has been made to move forward with “Prayer in Action” for the summer of 2015. “Prayer in Action” has its roots in the Diocese of Salina and is best described as a “mission experience in our own backyard.” Two of our college students from K-State, Cheyenne Becker – Sacred Heart Parish, Pratt and Michaela Gleason – St. John Parish, Meade are taking the lead for Prayer in Action. Over the next several months they will be visiting parishes to talk about bringing groups to a week of this mission experience. They are now in the process of finding communities to host a week of Prayer in Action, so if you feel that your community would need and benefit from a week of Prayer in Action, do not hesitate to get in touch with Steven Polley. Thank you for your time to these new initiatives.
From Catholic Social Service:
►50th Anniversary Events–Catholic Social Service invites you to join us for one or more of our 50th Anniversary Events:
►Valentine Weekend Workshop–Catholic Social Service invites married and unmarried couples to a Valentine Weekend Workshop to nurture their relationship. Workshop begins at 5:00 pm on Friday, February 13th in the Ford Co Room in the Student Union Bldg at Dodge City Community College and concludes on Sunday at 4:00 pm. Free meals and snacks are provided, and couples may receive up to $100 in Wal-Mart gift cards. Workshop provides an opportunity for couples to work and talk together about their relationship and what it means to them as individuals. For more information, or to sign up, Call 620-272-0010.
►Adoption Workshop– Thinking about Adoption? Dare to find out more! The next Catholic Social Service Adoption Workshop will be on Saturday, February 28, 2015 from 9 am - 4 pm at Newman University (Room 22), 236 San Jose, Dodge City KS. Catered lunch will be provided. Call Lori Titsworth at 620-792-1393.
From Around the Diocese:
Vol. XIII, No. II