Queen of Peace Center, a federated agency of Catholic Charities of St. Louis, recently announced the appointment of Sharon Spruell as chief executive officer. Spruell had been serving as interim CEO. She succeeds former CEO Lara Pennington, who served in the role from October 2011 until April 2018. Spruell joined Queen of Peace Center in 2017 as clinical director and in 2018 was named chief program officer. Before joining the agency, she worked at BJC Behavioral Health. Spruell, a parishioner of St. Joseph in Imperial, holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from St. Louis University and a master’s degree in counseling from Webster University. Queen of Peace Center is a family centered behavioral health care provider serving women with addiction, their children and families. The recovery center provides a variety of treatment options to women with co-occurring disorders and those affected by trauma.
‘Raise the Age’ passes
The Missouri General Assembly has voted to increase the age for prosecuting youth as adults from 17 to 18. The legislation will now head to Gov. Eric Greitens for his signature. Known as “Raise the Age,” the bill paves the way for criminal cases against youth who are under the age of 18 to begin in the juvenile court system. Missouri is one of only five states that still excludes all 17-year-olds from the juvenile justice system. In Missouri, 17-year-olds can’t vote, serve on juries, join the military or buy a lottery ticket. Under the new law, youth who are accused of serious crimes can still be prosecuted as adults. Sen. Wayne Wallingford (R-Cape Girardeau) and Rep. Nick Schroer (R-St. Charles) sponsored the legislation and guided it through the legislative process. The Missouri Catholic Conference was a part of the Missouri Raise the Age Coalition that helped organize efforts. The organizers stated the long-term economic benefits of keeping a 17-year-old out of prison will outweigh the costs of keeping the offender in the juvenile justice system.
State budget OK’d
The Missouri General Assembly approved a $28 billion budget for fiscal year 2019, which begins on July 1. This budget is an increase of $600 million over fiscal year 2018. Included is $6.4 million for the Alternatives to Abortion program. This funding is used by local pregnancy resource centers and maternity homes that provide women facing an unplanned pregnancy with material, educational and spiritual support to help them carry their babies to term. Also included is $15.7 million to the
Show-Me Healthy Babies program, which provides medical care to the unborn children of women without health insurance. Another $2.5 million goes to the healthy marriage/fatherhood initiative, a program which encourages participation of fathers in their children’s lives and upbringing. A pilot program that extends coverage for drug treatment for postpartum women from two months to 12 months will cost $1.4 million.
The Vitae Foundation honored the Judy Borst family at its annual St. Louis Pro-Life Event at the Chase Park Plaza. The family’s memorial gift makes it possible for pregnancy help centers across the world to access Vitae’s research and marketing information. “Honoring her pro-life passion, her family provided for the development of an online console where centers from around the world can access research articles, marketing strategies, packages of social media ads, podcasts, etc.,” Vitae president-elect Debbie Stokes said. On behalf of Judy’s family, Bill Borst, her husband of 50 years, accepted the honor. Judy Borst, a member of Annunziata Parish in Ladue, died in 2016.
Salute to Phillips
The University of Missouri-St. Louis honored St. Patrick Center CEO Laurie Phillips with a 2018 Salute to Business Achievement Award. The award recognizes outstanding UMSL Business alumni who have demonstrated personal and professional accomplishments to the university, their profession and/or their community. Four other alumni also received the award at the event. Phillips has guided the agency through several important efforts, including introducing its “Housing First” model and opening Biddle Housing Opportunities Center with the City of St. Louis.
New name for Surdyke Harley-Davidson
Tim and Janice Surdkye, the parents of Cadet Thomas Surdyke, will announce a new name for their motorcycle dealership, Surdyke Harley-Davidson, in Festus at a chain-cutting ceremony at 1 p.m. Saturday, May 19, Armed Forces Day, in front of the dealership. Cadet Surdyke was an Eagle Scout and West Point trainee who passed away in June 2016 from injuries sustained while rescuing a drowning civilian in a riptide off a beach in Long Island, N.Y. The new name will honor their family’s values, their son, and others who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Speakers at the ceremony will include West Point cadet James Crimmins, who was present during Cadet Surdyke’s life-saving actions, and Sen. Paul Wieland (R-Imperial), as well as Tim Surdyke, president of the Cadet Thomas Surdyke Memorial Foundation.
A multicultural Mass will be celebrated at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 23, at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis, Lindell Boulevard and Newstead Avenue in the Central West End. Bishop Mark S. Rivituso will celebrate the Mass, with readings, universal prayers and music in several languages and signed by an interpreter. Cultural dancing and festivities will commence at 6 p.m. on the front steps of the cathedral. The archdiocesan Office of Sacred Worship and Office of Hispanic Ministry along with the Peace and Justice Commission invite attendees to wear the traditional attire of their native homelands. The Mass celebrates the Feast of St. Toribio Romo, patron of immigrants. For information, contact
Theology on Tap
Young adults from across the archdiocese are invited to attend the Theology on Tap Summer Six Pack – six nights of engaging talks, drink specials, and great community on May 22, June 12, June 26, July 10, July 24, and Aug. 14. All talks will be held at 7 p.m. at Kirkwood Station Brewing Co. The theme this year is called “The Summer of Love” with each talk focusing on the different ways the Church communicates the Gospel of Love. Email [email protected] or call (314) 792-7008 with questions or for more information.
Be MORE, #BeASister
Registration is open for the “MORE Weekend” — the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet’s vocations discernment retreat for women interested in religious life Friday, June 8, to Sunday, June 10, at the sisters’ provincial motherhouse in south St. Louis. The“MORE Weekend” will consist of each element of the acronym: Ministry, at Marian Middle School and an organic garden; the core value of the sisters, being One with God and neighbor; Reflection and prayer, focusing on discernment and the call to unifying love; and Engagement with the sisters in community, meals and celebration. For more information, contact
[email protected] or visit www.stlouisreview.com/jvt.
Family retreat and vacation
Registration is open for the annual Missouri Holy Family Fest to be held Thursday, Aug. 9 to Sunday, Aug. 12, at Eagle Hurst Ranch near Steelville. Sponsored by the Apostolate For Family Consecration, the weekend features daily Masses, confessions, prayer and adoration. Father James Wasser, Missionaries of the Holy Family, will be the camp priest. The ranch features horseback riding, pony rides, fishing, tennis and more. For information, visit
www.eaglehurstranch.com/family-fest-weekend. To register, call (636) 931-3503, (314) 638-3382 or (314) 420-7917.