Rosary Girls Win State Championship
Read about the Rosary High School "Beads" swim team who brought home the state championship trophy in the Nov. 27 issue of The Observer!
The Observer Celebrates 80 Years
A dinner event celebrating The Observer newspaper's 80th anniversary this year was held Saturday, Nov. 21. It featured keynote speaker/author John Thavis (pictured) who entertained the crowd with tales from his decades as a journalist with Catholic News Service at the Vatican. Bishop David Malloy praised the work of the diocesan newspaper, noting two articles in particular that frequently have been mentioned to him as he travels in and beyond the diocese: his jail Masses at Christmastime, and his visit with Syrian refugees. A role of The Observer newspaper, he said, is to continue to reflect the life of the Church.
McHenry County Catholic Prayer Breakfast
Father Michael Gaitley, a priest of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception, spoke about the Blessed Mother and mercy to more than 200 youths at a Youth Rally on Nov. 6 at Marian Central Catholic High School, and to some 600 persons gathered on Nov. 7 (pictured) for the McHenry County Catholic Prayer Breakfast. The Nov. 7 event began with Mass at St. Thomas the Apostle Church celebrated by Bishop David Malloy, Father Gaitley, Father "Rocky" of Relevant Radio, and several priests of the diocese.
See coverage of both events in the Nov. 13 issue of The Observer.
USCCB Response to Syrian Refugees and the Attacks in Paris
In light of the recent acts of terror committed in Paris and subsequent rejection of Syrian refugee resettlement by the governors of several states, the Office of Migration and Refugee Services of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB/MRS) has prepared the Response Toolkit below for your information and use.
Step-by-step Refugee Screening Process
Statement from Bishop Elizondo, Chairman of USCCB Committee on Migration
Statement from Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, USCCB President
USCCB Statement on Solidarity
School Strategic Planning Meetings
Meetings of school leaders were held on Nov. 4 in Rockford and Nov. 5 in Aurora to begin a Strategic Planning Process for schools of the Diocese of Rockford. Pictured is lead project manager, Alan Meitler, chatting with Father Timothy Mulcahey and Father Sylvester Nnaso in Aurora. Also speaking at the meetings was Bishop David Malloy who noted that such a planning process has long been requested by various school and parish leaders and added that faith and expertise would come together in the process.
More information in the Nov. 6 and 13 issues of The Observer.
Aurora Central STEM Grant
On Nov. 5, members of the Dunham Fund board made a formal presentation of a grant to Aurora Central Catholic High School to enhance their science and other departments by developing a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) program. The grant consists of a $100,000 gift and a $400,000 challenge grant. Pictured is a student in science teacher Sharon Elgar's class in a demonstration for the benefit of Dunham Fund board members.
Additional information in the Nov. 13 Observer.
On Friday, October 30, priests and staff from 41 parishes gathered at St. Rita Parish in Rockford for the 11th annual Ministry Day.
Speaker Rich Curran encouraged his audience to be willing to rethink their individual jobs and work together to develop a plan to provide for the spiritual needs of parishioners beyond the statistical 22 percent that are devoted to their parish and, thus, most often served.
See more in the Nov. 6 issue of The Observer.
All Souls Day Prayer
Bishop David Malloy celebrated Mass in the mausoleum at Calvary Cemetery in Rockford on All Souls Day, Nov. 2. "We gather for one of the great traditions, the great privileges" of the Church, he said of the practice of praying that the faithful departed may soon be purified and enter the kingdom of heaven. He noted also that "This is one of the greatest statements of faith ... We ought to take advantage of this day" before we ourselves reach the end of our own lives, by practicing that moment and saying, "Jesus I trust you, Jesus I love you, Jesus I want to come to you."
Highlights of the Diocese of Rockford's 2015 Catholic Youth Summit. The Summit took place at Rock Valley College in Rockford on October 25, 2015.
The day included music, Mass with Bishop Malloy, prayer, adoration, entertainment and presenters for over 1,800 young adults and leaders in the Diocese of Rockford.
Translating a Transformative Book
What special project has inspired Father Jonathan Bakkelund, diocesan director of Divine Worship to learn German?
Find out in the November 6 issue of The Observer!
Bishop Malloy meets with Refugee Families
On Oct. 19, Bishop David Malloy met with Syrian refugee families who have migrated this year to Rockford, including one three-generation family that arrived just five days prior. In 1995, Bishop Malloy spent a year in Syria in service to the Vatican. He speaks enough words in Arabic to be able to tease about a common dish that was not part of the multi-cultural potluck. With the help of Refugee Resettlement Office interpreters, the bishop also reflected on places in Damascus and other parts of the country with the Syrians and heard a bit about their former occupations and lives.
More in the Oct. 23 Observer.
Holy Angels School Receives Grant
Holy Angels School recently received a grant from the Dunham Fund to begin a STEM program (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) program at the school, to begin in fall of 2016.
An Oct. 8 assembly brought Bishop Malloy to the school for a ceremonial check presentation from the Dunham Fund board. The money will fund the purchase of equipment as well as instructor training. Holy Angels Principal, Tonya Forbes, noted that an established STEM program that she visited brought her into contact with students who all expressed excitement about the program, even stating that it was their favorite class.
Three mothers of Holy Angel students were instrumental in writing the grant application: Adrienne Gilla, Becky Barr and Julie Smith. They are pictured here with, from left, Principal Forbes and Holy Angels pastor, Father Michael Lavin.
St. Margaret Mary Parish Celebrates 100 Years
On Sunday, Oct. 18, St. Margaret Mary Parish celebrated its 100th year with a Mass celebrated by Bishop David Malloy and a Gala banquet.
See more in the Oct. 23 issue of The Observer.
Annual Harvard Knights of Columbus Prolife Silent Vigil
Father Steven Clarke, parochial administrator of St. Joseph Parish, Harvard, poses with some prolife youngsters at the annual Harvard Knights of Columbus Prolife Silent Vigil.
An article and photos from several parts of the Diocese of Rockford where Life Chains were held are coming soon in the Oct. 9 issue of The Observer.
Reflecting on the Papal Visit
Nancie Brown, pictured with a new friend from El Salvador, and Jennifer Collins of the Diocesan Administration Center staff had two very different, but good, experiences in Philadelphia at the World Meeting of Families.
Transitional deacon Charles Fitzpatrick and Bishop David Malloy visited Washington, D.C. to see the pope, and several others from the diocese traveled to papal events as well.
Read stories and enjoy lots of photos in the Oct. 2 issue of The Observer.
40 Days for Life
The kick-off rally for 40 Days for Life was held on Sept. 19 in front of the Planned Parenthood in Aurora, along East New York Street. Speakers included Eric Scheidler, pictured here. See more photos and an article about the rally as experienced by Kathy Berkes, pastoral care coordinator for the diocesan Life and Evangelization Office in the Sept. 25 issue of The Observer. On the same page you will find a list of Life Chains coming Oct. 4 in locations across the Diocese of Rockford.