Sister Andre Kravec, OP,
installed as parish life
coordinator in Odin
Born a coal miner’s daughter,
Sister Andre enjoys the challenge
of ‘helping people of all ages’
In an Aug. 1 ceremony, Sister Andre Kravec, OP, was installed as parish life coordinator for Holy Name Parish in Odin.
Sister Andre came to the Diocese of Dodge City two years ago after having served for five years in Michigan.
Born a coal miner’s daughter in Pennsylvania, her family soon packed up and moved to Akron, Ohio where, during World War II, her father worked for Good Year Aircraft.
“I grew up in Akron and entered the Dominicans there,” she said. “But then, in the last year, my group from Akron joined with other groups of Dominicans to form one congregation which we call the Dominican Sisters of Peace, and that includes the Sisters from Great Bend.”
Sister Andre explained that training is required to become a parish life coordinator. “I’ve had 23 to 25 years of being a parish DRE as well as a good 15 years as pastoral associate along with that. Plus I have my master’s in religious studies….”
As parish life coordinator, she will oversee the general administration of the parish, which includes taking care of the physical needs of the church, as well as being on-call for the spiritual needs of the parishioners.
Holy Name Parish does not have a resident pastor, but like all parishes served by a parish life coordinator, it has a priest supervisor/sacramental minister, in this case, Father Charles Mazouch.
Until her recent installation, Sister Andre served as pastoral associate at Immaculate Conception Parish in Claflin, where her role was to assist the pastor in his administration of the parish. There, she found a need for a particular focus of working with the youth.
“We’re trying to get the youth involved in parish life,” she said. “If we don’t do it now, we’re never going to have them. You have to have people on site wherever they are, being interested in them.”
According to the guidelines for the “Administration of Parishes without a Resident Pastor” (Canon 517, §2), “The parish life coordinator should strive to know the faithful who have been entrusted to the coordinator’s care; therefore the coordinator is to visit families, sharing the cares, worries, and especially the griefs of the faithful. The coordinator is to help the sick, particularly those close to death.
“The coordinator is to seek out the poor, the afflicted, the lonely, those away from their own land, and those weighed down with special difficulties. The coordinator is to support spouses and parents in fulfilling their proper duties.”
When asked what she liked most about her ministry, she responded, “I enjoy the people. I enjoy the challenge of being able to help people of all ages -- the kids, young people, the adults, and helping people in their older years. It’s an ongoing challenge. Every day is different. It’s never the same humdrum sort of thing. I find that very life-giving. I really do.”