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2016 Diaconate Convocation

Winners of the 2016 Ministry Awards included Deacon Jose Vazquez, second from left, St. Phillip Award;
Deacon Norbert Weitendorf, St. Lawrence Award; Deacon Tom Bartholomew receiving the St. Priscilla Award
for his late wife Rebecca; Sue and Deacon Bob Poletto for Couple's Ministry; Deacon Tom Lambert, St. Stephen
Award; and Deacon Bill Stearns, far right, for Outstanding Service to the Diaconate Community. Also on hand
were Deacon Enrique Alonso and Deacon David Brencic, Associate Directors; and Deacon Richard Hudzik,
Vicar for Deacons. 
(Photo by Deacon John Szarek)

            Deacon Thomas Lambert, class of 1983, received the St. Stephen the Deacon Award for outstanding ministry for his work with people affected by mental illness.
            Lambert, who serves at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Chicago, was honored as part of the program during the 2016 Diaconate Convocation June 11 at St. John Brebeuf in Niles.
            Lambert has been involved in the mental illness field for a number of years. He has helped start and currently co-chairs the National Catholic Partnership on Disability’s Council on Mental Illness in Washington, D.C. He is a founding member and co-chair of the Archdiocese of Chicago’s Commission on Mental Illness, chair of the Advisory Board for Faith and Fellowship, on the Board of Pathways to Promise and serves on the board of NAMI-Faithnet.  He has led workshops, retreats and days of reflection educating dioceses, parish staffs, clergy, religious and laity about mental illness.
            His nomination letter read in part, “He accompanies those challenged by illness, individuals who are often marginated because of their conditions. He offers guidance and encouragement for families affected by a member with mental illness, as well as offering instruction to those who minister in this area.”
            Other ministry award winners included:
            -- Deacon Norbert Weitendorf, of St. Patricia Parish in Hickory Hills, -- St. Lawrence Award for ministry to the poor and needy.
            -- Deacon Jose Vazquez, of Maternity B.V.M. in Chicago, -- St. Phillip Award for evangelization.
            -- Rebecca Bartholomew, posthumously, of St. Michael Parish in Orland Park -- St. Priscilla Award for ministry by a wife or widow.
            -- Deacon Bob and Sue Poletto, of St. Mary of the Annunciation Parish in Mundelein – Shared Couple Ministry.


2016 Diaconate Convocation


Nearly 350 people attended the 2016 Diaconate Convocation June 11 at St. John Brebeuf Parish in Niles.  

Deacons and wives, left, await the start of the Convocation. Father Francis "Rocky" Hoffman, executive director of Relevant Radio, makes a point during his keynote address. (Photos by Deacon Hans Goeckner)



Diaconate retreats at the Cardinal Stritch Retreat House

Here are the dates for the Diaconate retreats for the fiscal year of 2016-17 at the Cardinal Stritch Retreat House:


Aug. 12-14: Deacons retreat

Sept. 9-11: Spanish Couples retreat

Dec. 9-11: Deacon Couples retreat

Jan. 20-22: Deacon Couples retreat

Feb. 3-5: Spanish Couples retreat

March 3-5: Deacon Couples retreat

March 24-26: Deacon wives and widows retreat

March 31-April 2: Spanish Deacon Couples retreat

May 5-7: Deacon Couples retreat

May 12-14: Deacons retreat

May 19-21: Spanish Deacon Couples retreat

All retreats begin at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and conclude before lunch on Sunday.

Call the Stritch Retreat House at (847) 566-6060 to reserve a place. You must also call Stritch 24 hours in advance -- or Thursday during the day -- if you are canceling.



Spanish Mandated Reporter Training

The Mandated Reporter training in Spanish will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 15, at the Diaconate Office, 816 Marengo Ave. Forest Park. 

To register , you must call the Office of the Diaconate at (708) 366-8900 AND the Office for Protection of Children and Youth at (312) 534-5254 and ask for Judy. OPCY needs your name so they can print your certificate of completion.



Learning about evangelization

      Sherry Weddell, author of "Forming Intentional Disciples," will present an all-day workshop from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, June 25, at St. John Brebeuf Parish, 8305 N. Harlem Ave., Niles. The program is sponsored by the Office of New Evangelization.
      Cost is $60 ($50 if you register before May 1). Group discounts available. Register online:


List of Spiritual Directors

The Office of the Diaconate has compiled a list of Spiritual Directors who are willing to meet with deacons and wives of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

When meeting with the Spiritual Director make sure to ask what the stipend for their service will be.



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Death of Jeanette McKinnis

We note with sorrow the death of Jeanette McKinnis, wife of Deacon William McKinnis, class of 1990. Deacon McKinnis is a deacon at St. Columbanus Parish in Chicago. Jeanette died on June 7, 2016. 

The arrangements for the Memorial Mass for Saturday, June 18, are as follows:

9:00 AM--Prepast
10:00 AM--Fellowship
10:30 AM--Memorial Mass

St. Columbanus, 331 East 71st. Street, Chicago, will be the site of these remembrances and prayers for Jeanette McKinnis. 

If deacons would like to attend and vest, please let us know and we can relay word or contact Deacon LeRoy Gill directly.

Please keep Deacon McKinnis and the entire McKinnis family in your prayers.  

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord.


Deaths in our community

Jeanette McKinnis, wife of Deacon William McKinnis, class of 1990
Deacon Peter Hajdu, class of 2014, died June 6, 2016
Deacon Phillip Ontiveros, class of 1993, died June 3, 2016
Deacon Ramon Morales, class of 1991, died June 1, 2016
Deacon John Ficker, class of 1994, died May 29, 2016
Betty Howland-Gildea, wife of Deacon Frank Gildea, class of 1993.
Gerania Debord Baez, wife of Deacon David Baez, class of 2003
Deacon Salvador Cornejo, class of 1978, died April 14, 2016
Deacon Kenneth Jenney, class of 1996, died April 8, 2016.
Deacon John Leonas, class of 1979, died April 7, 2016.
Deacon Carl Olsen, class of 1978, died March 30, 2016.
Deacon Gilberto Mercado, class of 1985, died March 27, 2016.
Deacon Jaime Juarez, class of 1974, died March 25, 2016.
Deacon Ignacio Ortega, class of 1991, died March 21, 2016.
Deacon Thomas Morgan, class of 20015, died March 19, 2016.
Deacon Francisco Roman, class of 1976, died March 6, 2016.
Deacon Joseph Walsh, class of 2009, died March 3, 2016.
Deacon Charles Moran, class of 1976, died March 2, 2016.
Vera Kasimatis, wife of the late Deacon Jerome Kasimatis, class of 1982.
Elisa Mendiola, sister of Rosa (Deacon Armando) Herrera, class of 1996.
Jerome Skaja, brother of Deacon Larry Skaja, class of 1987.
Virginia Pineiro, wife of Deacon Ismael Pineiro, class of 1993.
Eleanor Piontek, wife of Deacon Richard Piontek, class of 1986.
Maritza Cintron, daughter of Maria and Gilberton Cintron, class of 1975.
Deacon Ray Ward, class of 1989, died Jan. 15.
Agatha Foley, wife of deceased Deacon Edward Foley, class of 1980, died Jan. 15, 2016
Deacon Victor Janowski, class of 1983, died Jan. 10, 2016
Vera Forbes, wife of deceased deacon Gerald Forbes, class of 1075

         Please keep all the faithful departed and their families in your prayers.

Updated 6/8/16


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