November 12, 2010

DoS Priests in Rome with St. Peter

ROME - Five diocesan priests have been on pilgrimage at the banks of the Tiber this week.

The Rev. Richard Bokinski, the Rev. James Carlson, the Rev. Ronald Dombrowski, and the Rev. Richard Jozwiak joined the Rev. Thomas McNamara, who won a trip to the Italian Capital from the Kansas-based Fireside Catholic Publishing as part of its celebration of the “Year of the Priest.”

The pilgrims met up with two of their brother priests from the Diocese of Saginaw - the Rev. José Maria Cabrera and the Rev. Denis Heames, - who have been studying at the Gregorian University since 2009.

Father José Maria shared these two photos above and the note below with the Communications Office after the seven brothers shared some time together:

We had the wonderful opportunity to have a great time together here in Rome. The priests were at Casa Santa Maria (Father Denis and Father José's home) on Sunday for Mass. Father Denis presided at Mass. Then pranzo (lunch). We had dinner to Bishop Cistone's health (Salute!) in a restaurant right in front of the Church of St. Ignatius; this was on Monday. Then on Tuesday, we celebrated Mass at the Clementine Chapel in the crypt of St. Peter's Basilica. In fact, in the picture you can see the back wall behind a grill, that's St. Peter's sarcofagus! It was a powerful experience of prayer and unity. We prayed for all the people of the Diocese of Saginaw. Blessings, Father José Maria

Bishops Announce Framework for Rebuilding the Church in Haiti, Present Haitian Bishops’ New Building Agency

WASHINGTON — At their Fall General Assembly, November 15-18, the U.S. bishops will receive an update on the situation in Haiti and the U.S. Catholic Church’s emergency relief efforts so far, as well as plans to aid long-term reconstruction, including rebuilding of Church structures.

As it begins funding of Church reconstruction projects in Haiti, the Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) recently adopted two documents that will help guide the work of the Subcommittee in this regard.

The first document outlines the overall vision for Church collaboration and was issued by a gathering of bishops from around the world, including all Haitian diocesan bishops, Catholic Relief Services and other Church aid agencies during a meeting in Miami at the end of September.

The gathering called for a comprehensive view of development. "We aim to build up every Haitian man and woman in his or her totality: physically, intellectually, emotionally and spiritually," the Final Statement said.

Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami, chairman of USCCB Haiti Advisory Group hosted the meeting. "The key element in moving forward is unity," Wenski said. "That means we need to get on the same page, especially about how we’re going to rebuild."

The Advisory Group has been charged with distributing $33 million collected for Church needs from the Special Collection taken up in dioceses across the United States immediately after January’s earthquake. This amount represents 40 percent of the total amount collected which totaled $83 million. The remaining 60 percent of the funds were assigned to Catholic Relief Services for humanitarian relief and development work.

"The generosity of American Catholics has been non-stop since the earthquake and we want to provide a mechanism that we can all use to help the Haitians rebuild in a reliable, transparent, accountable way," said Archbishop Wenski.

At the General Assembly, the U.S. bishops also will hear about the formation of a reconstruction and building unit, housed within the Haitian Conference of Catholic Bishops, called "PROCHE." This entity was approved by the Haitian bishops also in September.

A French and Creole word that means "close by," PROCHE is also an acronym for Proximité Catholique avec Haïti et son Eglise (Catholic closeness with Haiti and her Church).

Designed to serve as a central coordination point, PROCHE will bring together a wide range of stakeholders, including affected Haitians, Church personnel, donors, engineers and others. It will support reconstruction priorities across dioceses, coordinate projects within dioceses, and ensure timely completion of projects built to international standards and within agreed-upon budgets.

"In all my years of working with Haiti, I’ve never seen the type of collaboration between different parts of the Church as I’ve seen since the earthquake," said Archbishop Wenski, who will brief the entire body of bishops on the global Church’s plans to rebuild church infrastructure during the November meeting of the USCCB in Baltimore. "I will ask the bishops to help motivate other Catholics interested in helping Haiti so that we can pool our talents and our treasure in favor of the Church in Haiti."
To assist in this process, the Haitian Bishops have also issued a document entitled Partners in Mission which contains a set of guidelines for groups and parishes engaged in “twinning” relationships between Haiti and the Church around the world.

In the months ahead, Catholic Relief Services will assist the U.S. bishops in reaching out to dioceses, colleges and parishes in the United States to strengthen existing ties between the Church in the United States and the Church in Haiti.

Both documents and other information about plans to help the Church in Haiti can be found at

November 11, 2010

On Veteran's Day ...

Let us pray for our brothers and sisters as they go forth with courage and determination to face the forces of violence, weapons of destruction and hearts filled with hate.

4For our Commander-In-Chief, President Obama, and our political and military leaders that they may tirelessly seek peaceful settlements to international disputes; we pray to the Lord:

4 That the Lord may preserve the members of our Army, Navy, Marines, Coast Guard and Air Force from all harm; we pray to the Lord:

4 That even in war, we may keep clearly before us the defense of all human rights, especially the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; we pray to the Lord:

4 That the families, relatives and friends of our military members may be strengthened in this time of concern and anxiety; we pray to the Lord:

4 That the Lord may help families with men and women in the armed forces to cope with daily challenges in the absence of their loved ones; we pray to the Lord:

4 That our homeland will be preserved from violence and terrorism; we pray to the Lord:

4 That the nations of the world will seek to work together in harmony and peace; we pray to the Lord:

4 That the hearts of all men and women will be moved to pursue true peace and justice; we pray to the Lord:

4 That violence may be overcome by peace; that weapons of destruction be transformed into tools of justice, and hate give way to true charity; we pray to the Lord:

4 That grateful for and inspired by those veterans who have given their lives for our country we may bravely face the challenges ahead; we pray to the Lord:

Lord God, Almighty Father,creator of mankind and author of peace,as we are ever mindful of the cost paid for the liberty we possess,we ask you to bless the members of our armed forces.Give them courage, hope and strength.May they ever experience your firm support, gentle love and compassionate healing.Be their power and protector, leading them from darkness to light. To you be all glory, honor and praise, now and forever. Amen

Add your Veterans to our prayers on our Facebook page.

Find these prayers for our troops and more from the USCCB Committee on Divine Worship.

November 10, 2010

Presbyteral Council and College of Consultors membership announced

SAGINAW - The Most Rev. Joseph R. Cistone, Bishop of Saginaw, today announced the membership for the Presbyteral Council and College of Consultors for the Catholic Diocese of Saginaw.

"Last year, I reviewed the existing structure of these two bodies," Bishop Cistone wrote in a memo to priests, deacons and pastoral administrators. "In order to ensure that they were formed in accord with Canon Law and that the Presbyteral Council had suitable, elected representation, I promulgated revised bylaws for these two bodies, after consultation with and advisement from the existing Council and College. As a result, new elections for the Presbyteral Council took place during the summer and, subsequently, I appointed new Consultors from among this newly established body."

Bishiop Cistone was installed as the sixth Bishop of Saginaw in July 2009.


The membership of the Presbyteral Council is as follows:

Rev. Thomas J. McNamara, Vicar General (Ex Officio)
Rev. Ronald F. Wagner, Vicar for Priests (Ex Officio)

Rev. Patrick M. Jankowiak, Vicarite 1 (Term ends July, 2012)
Rev. James E. Falsey, Vicarite 2 (Term ends July, 2012)
Rev. Peter J. Gaspeny, Vicarite 3 (Term ends July, 2012)
Rev. Robert S. Gohm, Vicarite 4 (Term ends July, 2013)
Rev. Thomas J. Fleming, Vicarite 5 (Term ends July, 2013)
Rev. James G. Heller, Vicarite 6 (Term ends July, 2014)
Rev. Robert Howe, Vicarite 7 (Term ends July, 2013)
Rev. Charles Hammond, Vicarite 8 (Term ends July, 2014)
Rev. Frederick J. Kawka, Senior Priests (Term ends July, 2014)

Rev. Robert H. Byrne (Term ends July, 2014)
Rev. William J. Rutkowski (Term ends July, 2013)
Rev. Prentice A. Tipton (Term ends July, 2012)

Consultants (Regional Vicars)
Rev. John Cotter, Vicarite 1
Rev. James E. Falsey, Vicarite 2
Rev. Peter J. Gaspeny, Vicarite 3**
Rev. Craig L. Albrecht, Vicarite 4
Rev. Richard Bokinskie, Vicarite 5
Rev. Randy Kelly, Vicarite 6
Rev. Robert Pare, Vicarite 7
Rev. William J. Gruden, Vicarite 8
** Designates Voting Member


The following priests will serve as members of the College of Consultors, effective November 9, 2010, for a period of five years or until a new College is established:

Rev. Robert H. Byrne
Rev. Peter J. Gaspeny
Rev. Frederick J. Kawka
Rev. Thomas J. McNamara
Rev. William J. Rutkowski
Rev. Ronald F. Wagner

Fr. David Parsch welcomed into Hall of Honor

LAPEER - The Lapeer Alumni Association inducted four new members into its Alumni Hall of Honor on Sunday during an afternoon ceremony at the Lapeer East High School

Distinguished graduates for 2010 include Ronald L. Reamer, Class of 1955; Linda Moore Priestap, Class of 1963; Rev. David Parsch, Class of 1964; and Kevin M. Daley, Class of 1975.

Father Parsch was ordained to the priesthood for the Cathoilc Diocese of Saginaw in 1980. He currently serves as pastor at Holy Spirit Parish in Shields, where he has been assigned since 1999.

Read more about the Lapeer Alumni Association award at the Lapeer Community Schools blog.

November 5, 2010

DoS is All About Women

If you are going to the All About Women Expo today or tomorrow at the at the SVSU Ryder Cetner, be sure to visit the Catholic Diocese of Saginaw Respect Life booth.

DoS All Saints Photo Constest

St. Aloysius Gonzaga was chosen as the winner of the ALL SAINTS PHOTO CONTEST hosted this week on the Catholic Diocese of Saginaw's Facebook Page. Visit us on Facebook to see some of the other entries and Honorable Mentions.

November 4, 2010

Rest in Peace: DoS Bishop, Priests, Deacons Gather to Pray for Their Deceased Brothers

Following All Saints Day, Nov. 1, and All Souls Day, Nov. 2, Bishop Joseph R. Cistone and clergy of the diocese gathered today, as they do annually, at the Center for Ministry in Saginaw to celebrate Mass and pray for the souls of deceased Bishops, Priests, and Deacons who have served in the Diocese of Saginaw since it was established in 1938.

In paradisum deducant te Angeli; in tuo adventu suscipiant te martyres, et perducant te in civitatem sanctam Ierusalem. Chorus angelorum te suscipiat, et cum Lazaro quondam paupere æternam habeas requiem.

May angels lead you into Paradise; may the martyrs receive you at your coming and lead you to the holy city of Jerusalem. May a choir of angels receive you, and with Lazarus, who once was poor, may you have eternal rest.

Our Bishops
Bishop William F. Murphy
Bishop Stephen S. Woznicki
Bishop Francis F. Reh
Bishop Kenneth E. Untener
Bishop Kenneth J. Povish
Cardinal James A. Hickey

Our Priests
Fr. George S.Artman
Fr. Joseph V. Barrette
Fr. Cornelius A. Bates
Fr. Louis T. Bauchard
Fr. Joseph O. Bauer
Fr. Albert S. Baumann
Fr. Michael J. Bell
Fr. Elmer J. Betzing
Fr. Henry S. Bobeck
Fr. John J. Boguslawski
Msgr. Harold J. Bolton
Fr. Anthony O. Bosler
Fr. Anthony C. Bourdow
Fr. Lucien Bourget
Fr. John J. Bozek
Msgr. Charles W. Burkhardt
Fr. Anthony Busuttil
Fr. Carl R. Cahill
Fr. Edward A. Caldwell
Fr. Joseph A. Castanier
Fr. Donald L. Christensen
Fr. Robert J. Couillard
Fr. Glenn W. Cronkite
Fr. Joseph L. Culligan
Fr. James C. Czachorski
Fr. Robert W. Davey
Msgr. George O. Dequoy
Fr. Jeffrey J. Donner
Fr. Leo S. Dorsey
Fr. Joseph J. Dudek
Fr. Donald G. Dueweke
Fr. Robert J. Duggan
Fr. Henry P. DuRussel
Fr. C. Henry Eickholt
Fr. Eustace Faucher
Fr. Joseph F. Favara
Fr. Paul Felchnerowski
Fr. R. Emmet Fitzpatrick
Fr. George W. Flanagan
Fr. William V. Flannery
Msgr. Eugene A. Forbes
Fr. James H. Frawley
Fr. Max J.V. Frego
Fr. Raymond S. Fron
Fr. Stanislaus A. Fron
Fr. Charles L. Ganley
Fr. George C. Garmyn
Msgr. John E. Gatzke
Fr. John F. Gentner
Fr. Joseph A Gorski
Fr. Larry H. Greiner
Fr. John F. Grinzinger
Fr. Aloysius P. Hafner
Fr. Sigmund J. Haremski
Fr. Harry J. Hart
Fr. Vincent J. Heaphy
Fr. John P. Hoogterp
Msgr. Thomas R. Horton
Fr. Thomas C. Howard
Msgr. Joseph B. Illig
Fr. Francis A. Jurek
Fr. Bruno L. Kaczmarczyk
Fr. Francis A. Kaczmarek
Fr. Martin I. Kalahar
Fr. Joseph S. Kaminski
Msgr. Frank W. Kaufmann
Fr. Joseph J. Kearns
Fr. Charles W. Keho
Fr.. James D. Kenny
Fr. Stanley A. Kilar
Fr. Bernard J. Kirchman
Fr. Edwin A. Kirchoff
Fr. Camill F. Klos
Fr. Joseph V. Klunius
Fr. John T. Kolevar
Fr. Joseph S. Koper
Fr. Angelus M. Kopp
Fr. Francis S. Kozak
Fr. Stephen J. Kozak
Fr. Ladislaus P. Krakowski
Fr. Waclaw Krawczyk
Fr. Timothy Kroboth
Fr. Alphonse A. Kromka
Fr. Marian R. Kryszak
Fr. John J. Kucinski
Fr. Stanislaus Kuczas
Fr.. Michael J. Kujawa
Fr. Gerald F. Kukla
Fr. Leonard S. Kwasigroch
Fr. Alpha J. LaHaie
Fr. Eugene P. Labory
Fr. Theodore E. LaMarre
Fr. George Lavallee
Msgr. Edward A. Lefebvre
Fr. Godfrey H. Lenzen
Msgr. Joseph A. Lewandoski
Fr. Ceslaus L. Lipinski
Fr. Francis S. Lukowicz
Msgr. Charles A. Mahoney
Fr. James Malone
Fr. James J. Marvin
Fr. Ramon T. Matuszewski
Fr. Carl Mayes
Fr. Frederick J. Maynard
Fr. Eugene A. McCarthy
Msgr. John McCullough
Fr. Kryan E. McGinn
Fr. Oswald T. McGinn
Fr. Frank L. McLaughlin
Fr. Cornelius N. McEachin
Fr. Urban A. Miller
Fr. Joseph T. Morales
Fr. John A. Mulvey
Msgr. Olin J. Murdick
Msgr. Francis J. Murray
Fr. John W. Nagle
Fr. Adalbert Narloch
Fr. Stephen Narloch
Fr. Andrew Narloch
Fr. Robert G. Navarre
Fr. Robert F. Neuman
Fr. Clement M. Niedzwiecki
Fr. Ignatius L. O'Brien
Fr. Neil F. O'Connor
Fr. Sylvester J. O'Keefe
Fr. Charles H. O'Neil
Fr. Edward P. O'Reilly
Fr. Joseph D. O'Rourke
Fr. William J. O'Shea
Fr. Raymond C. Oswald
Fr. Aloysius J. O'Toole
Fr. Marion J. Pawlowski
Fr. Robert J. Pelletier
Fr. Francis J. Piaskowski
Fr. Leo J. Piaskowski
Msgr. Peter A. Pijnappels
Fr. Henry S. Podsiad
Fr. Richard L. Rabideau
Fr. Richard C. Ratajczak
Msgr. Ralph M. Richards
Msgr. Charles A. Roark
Fr. Peter M. Robertson
Fr. Robert E. Rock
Fr. John R. Rushman
Fr. Frederick W. Ryan
Fr. Joseph D. Ryan
Fr. Thomas W. Ryan
Fr. Anthony Schumacher
Fr. R. Eugene Seidenwand
Fr. Joseph Simon
Msgr. William L. Simon
Fr. Leo F. Skornia
Fr. Constantine A. Skowronski
Msgr. Casimir T. Skowronski
Msgr. John J. Sonefeld
Msgr. John B. Surprenant
Fr. Edward J. Szturmowski
Fr. Valerian S. Szymanski
Fr. Casimir Szyper
Fr. Bela E. Torok
Fr. John W. Troester
Fr. J. Edward Trombley
Fr. Charles Van Colen
Fr. Sebastian A. Van Gessel
Fr. Richard E. Van Mullekom
Fr. Norman F. Van Poppelen
Msgr. J. Felix Vogt
Fr. Casimir E. Walkowiak
Fr. William J. Walsh
Fr. Floyd Welna
Fr. Francis F. Welsmiller
Fr. Edward R. Werm
Fr. Bruno Wilczewski
Fr. Louis S. Wodecki
Fr. Ignatius Woloszyk
Msgr. Daniel J. Wynne
Fr. John G. Wyss
Fr. John A. Yeager
Fr. Herbert T. Zacharias
Fr. Norman L. Zielinski
Fr. August Zylla

Our Deacons
Deacon Stanley Belanger
Deacon Floyd Belmer
Deacon Ralph Brisson
Deacon Gerard Deneut
Deacon J. Arthur Haley
Deacon Edward King
Deacon Lambert Kuhr
Deacon Harry Mailley
Deacon Ray O’Rourke
Deacon Aaron Prout
Deacon Alvin Provot

Bishops to Vote on Baptism Agreement with Reformed Christians at November Meeting

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Catholic bishops will vote on an agreement with four Protestant communities to mutually recognize one another’s baptism as valid when they meet for their annual Fall General Assembly, November 15-18, in Baltimore. The proposed Common Agreement on Mutual Recognition of Baptism is the result of six years of study and discussion between the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs and representatives from the Presbyterian Church-USA, the Reformed Church in America, the Christian Reformed Church, and the United Church of Christ.

“The U.S. bishops stand at an important juncture in affirming the unity that Christ has given to the baptized members of his body, a unity that is ever fragile and always in need of support from the pastors of the Church,” said Atlanta Archbishop Wilton Gregory, chairman of the USCCB Committee for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, on the importance of the agreement.

The Catholic Church has recognized the validity of baptisms of most major Christian communions since the Second Vatican Council (1962-65). In 2002, concerns over certain practices (such as baptism by sprinkling) and spoken formulas (such as baptism in the name of the Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier) used by some Christians led the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity to urge national bishops’ conferences to study their mutual understanding of baptism with other Christians. These questions were examined and resolved by Round Seven of the Reformed-Roman Catholic Dialogue-USA, which produced the Common Agreement, as well as a study entitled “These Living Waters.”

The Common Agreement affirms that both Catholic and Reformed Christians hold that baptism is the sacramental bond of unity for the Body of Christ, which is to be performed only once, by an authorized minister, with flowing water, using the Scriptural Trinitarian formula of “Father, Son and Holy Spirit.” The agreement encourages all local Christian communities to keep baptismal records. The Common Agreement has already been ratified by the Presbyterian Church-USA.

The bishops will vote on the Common Agreement and an accompanying Reception Statement that calls upon bishops and pastors in the U.S. to recognize as valid baptisms from the Reformed communities in question. This will apply to baptisms performed after the agreement has gone into effect and if a baptismal certificate is provided stating that the traditional Trinitarian formula was used.

While other bishops’ conferences around the world have entered into similar agreements with the Protestant communities of their region, this document is unprecedented for the Catholic Church in the United States. As the Common Agreement would be an official agreement with other Christians, it is not amendable. The Reception Statement, however, can be discussed and amended by the bishops.

November 3, 2010

‘Share in the Care’: Parishes to conduct annual Collection for Retired Sisters, Brothers, Priests in Religious Orders next month

2010 Retired Religious
Catholics in the Diocese of Saginaw will have the opportunity to "Share in the Care" of senior religious by participating in the annual collection for the Retirement Fund for Religious (RFR), to be held December 11-12, 2010. The collection is coordinated by the National Religious Retirement Office in Washington and provides financial support for the day-to-day care of thousands of elderly Catholic sisters, brothers, and religious order priests.

Last year, the Diocese of Saginaw contributed $187,156.91 to this collection. In 2010, the Sisters of St. Clare received financial assistance made possible by the RFR. Additionally, women and men religious who serve or have served in the diocese but whose institutes are headquartered elsewhere may benefit from this fund.

Since 1988, Catholics in the United States have donated $617 million to this initiative. Nearly 95 cents of every dollar is used to aid senior religious.

Despite the overwhelming generosity to this fund, many religious communities continue to lack resources sufficient to support retirement and elder care. Of 573 communities submitting data to the NRRO in 2009, fewer than seven percent were fully funded for retirement.

Traditionally, religious served for small stipends that did not include retirement benefits. Their sacrifices now leave their religious communities without adequate savings for retirement. Compounding the funding shortage are the rising cost of care and the substantial loss of income that has resulted from the declining number of religious able to serve in compensated ministry.

"As the number of wage-earning religious drops, so does income," explains NRRO Executive Director Sister Janice Bader, a member of the Sisters of the Most Precious Blood of O’Fallon, Missouri.

"Census projections indicate that by 2019, religious past age 70 will outnumber those under 70 by nearly four to one. We want to do everything possible to help religious communities prepare for the dramatic income reduction that will accompany this demographic shift."

As a result of the 2009 collection, which garnered over $28.1 million, the National Religious Retirement Office was able to distribute more than $23 million in financial assistance to 477 communities, representing more than 45,000 women and men religious. By underwriting necessities, such as prescription medication and nursing support, these funds help religious communities provide for the ongoing care of elder members. Additional funding was allocated to initiatives targeted for religious institutes with the greatest needs.

Learn more at

November 2, 2010

President of U.S. Bishops Offers Prayers, Solidarity with Iraqi Christians, Says U.S. Has Moral Obligation to Help

WASHINGTON — Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), offered the prayers of the U.S. bishops and expressed solidarity with the suffering Christians of Iraq following the October 31 attack on the Syrian Catholic cathedral in Baghdad that killed 58 people and wounded 75.

“We stand with the bishops, Church and people of Iraq in their urgent search for greater security, freedom and protection,” said Cardinal George in a November 1 statement. “We call upon the United States to take additional steps to help Iraq protect its citizens, especially the most vulnerable.”Cardinal George echoed the recent expression of sorrow of Pope Benedict XVI, as well as the pope’s concluding message from the recent Synod of Bishops on the Middle East: “Peace is possible. Peace is urgent. Peace is the indispensable condition for a life of dignity for individuals and society.”

Cardinal George noted that, at the Synod on the Middle East, Iraqi bishops addressed the challenges facing their people, including kidnappings, bombings and threats against businesses and livelihoods.

Cardinal George also said that, while the U.S. bishops welcomed the end of U.S. military operations in Iraq, “we share the Iraqi bishops’ concern that the United States failed to help Iraqis in finding the political will and concrete ways needed to protect the lives of all citizens, especially Christians and other vulnerable minorities, and to ensure that refugees and displaced persons are able to return to their homes safely. Having invaded Iraq, the U.S. government has a moral obligation not to abandon those Iraqis who cannot defend themselves.”

Read the full statement.