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Archdiocesan briefs

Messengers of Peace

Three men began their novitiate with the Messengers of Peace in Colombia. Brothers Daniel de San José, Juan Diego de Maria and Andres de Jesús (top photo) entered the novitiate on Dec. 12, the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. In addition, two novices, Brothers Hermano and Giovanni de Juan Bautista (bottom photo) professed their temporary vows.

The Messengers of Peace is a religious community founded in 2005 by Msgr. Luis Mesa, with the support of Archbishop Emeritus Robert J. Carlson. The community, which currently has 11 men, is dedicated to praying for peace in Colombia and around the world, and they perform works of peace through ministry to the children, elderly and poor of Colombia. The community, which began in Villa de Leyva, receives financial support through the Annual Catholic Appeal and archdiocesan Mission Office.

Special delivery

St. Mary Magdalen School in Brentwood found a novel way to deliver items to an agency serving people in need. Abbott Ambulance, as well as the Brentwood firefighters and paramedics, helped the students load the back of an ambulance with new gloves, hats and scarves. The donations collected during Advent were delivered to the Webster/Rock Hill Ministries. The community outreach program provides food, clothes, medicine and emergency assistance to people in need. St. Mary Magdalen School exemplifies the importance of living the message of Jesus Christ by helping others through community service projects.

Cor Jesu president named to NCEA board

The National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) has appointed Cor Jesu Academy’s president, Sister Mary Grace Walsh, ASCJ, to its board of directors. Since its founding in 1904, the NCEA has grown to become the largest private professional education association in the world. The organization works with Catholic educators to support ongoing faith formation and the teaching mission of the Catholic Church. “Our Catholic schools provide vital resources to our communities, and I look forward to working with NCEA to further enhance the opportunities available to students and educators,” Sister Mary Grace said. She served as the provost for education, evangelization and catechesis and the president of Saint Thomas Seminary in the Archdiocese of Hartford. She also served as superintendent and later secretary of Catholic education and faith formation in the Diocese of Bridgeport. She has been an elementary and secondary school teacher and administrator in seven dioceses in parochial, diocesan and religious congregation-sponsored schools.

Christmas Appeal continues

Catholic Charities of St. Louis serves people in need throughout the archdiocese, especially those who are poor and vulnerable. A gift to its Christmas Appeal is a beautiful way to “let God love others through you.” For information or to contribute, visit www.ccstl.org. Donations also may be mailed to Catholic Charities, PO Box 952393, St. Louis MO 63129-2393.

Tree of Hope

SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Foundation’s annual Christmas campaign, Tree of Hope, continues, as it seeks to provide hope and healing for the children served at SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital. Even in the very early days, it was known that a hospital dedicated solely to the care of children would never be able to sustain itself on reimbursements alone. The hospital is the only free-standing, not-for-profit Catholic pediatric hospital in the United States. SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital is committed to revealing the healing presence of God through its exceptional health care services and through prayer, and that no family will ever be turned away due to their inability to pay. Contribute at www.glennon.org or to SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Foundation, 3800 Park Ave., St. Louis, MO 63110.

SLU workers OK contract

By an overwhelming margin, SEIU Local 1 custodians, groundskeepers and distribution workers at Saint Louis University ratified a new contract covering nearly 150 workers at the university, according to a press release from SEIU Local 1. The agreement includes guaranteed personal protection equipment, additional paid sick days and the highest-ever raises for Local 1 members at SLU. The new three-year union contract guarantees a path to a minimum wage of $15 an hour by 2022, ahead of the University’s 2024 $15 plan, which will help SLU essential workers support their families while strengthening their communities, according to SEIU Local 1.

Surviving Divorce

Behold Ministry is hosting “Surviving Divorce: Hope and Healing for the Catholic Family,” a 12-week DVD program featuring Catholic experts and lay men and women on the journey to healing. The program is intended for anyone going through the divorce process now or those who have been divorced for many years. The program begins at Immaculate Conception Parish in Dardenne Prairie on Jan. 5 from 7-9 p.m. Contact Debi Jones-Orf at [email protected] for more information. The program also will be offered at the Cardinal Rigali Center beginning Jan. 7 from 7-9 p.m. Contact Don Gayou at [email protected] or (314) 406-3098. It also will be held at St. Clare of Assisi Parish in Ellisville starting Jan. 9 from 10 a.m. to noon. ​Contact Michelle Fuller at [email protected] or (314) 623-9294.

Student development

Saint Louis University has appointed Sarah Cunningham as vice president for student development. Her appointment is effective Feb. 15. Cunningham currently serves as the assistant vice provost for student life strategy and policy at Johns Hopkins University. She also has served in student affairs leadership roles at the University of Chicago, the University of Florida and George Mason University. In her new role at SLU, Cunningham will oversee Housing and Residence Life, the Student Health Center, the University Counseling Center, Academic Support Services, the Student Involvement Center; Campus Recreation and Wellness, the Center for Service and Community Engagement, Disability Services, and Student Responsibility and Community Standards, among other areas. Cunningham will succeed Debra Rudder Lohe,who has served as interim vice president for student development since Jan. 1, 2020. Lohe sought to return to her former role as the director of SLU’s Reinert Center for Transformative Teaching and Learning, a post she has held since 2011.

MLK Mass

Archbishop Mitchell Rozanski will be the main celebrant and homilist at the annual Archdiocesan Mass for the Preservation of Peace and Justice, at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 17, at the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis. The annual Mass commemorates the birth and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. High school teens will be honored with the Model of Justice Award at the end of Mass. For more information, call the St. Charles Lwanga Center (314) 367-7929.


Missourians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ending the use of the death penalty in Missouri, is asking people to sign petitions on its website seeking clemency for inmates on Missouri’s death row. The organization is a recipient of a grant from the Catholic Campaign for Human Development. Visit bit.ly/3mFEbUF.

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