Catholic school year to open with Mass, luncheon Aug. 14

School pastors, parochial vicars and principals will gather at St. Mary’s Church in Kickapoo on Thursday, Aug. 14, to open the new school year with a Mass celebrated by Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC. It will begin at
11 a.m.

At the luncheon and meeting that follow at Kickapoo Creek Winery, the Diocese of Peoria will recognize Barbara Shrode of St. Paul’s School in Macomb as its distinguished principal for the 2007-2008 school year. She has been principal at the Macomb school for 11 years.

In addition, Msgr. William Watson, pastor of St. Thomas the Apostle Parish in Peoria Heights for 27 years and president of Peoria Notre Dame High School since 2007, will be honored as the outstanding school pastor.

Brother William Dygert, CSC, superintendent of Catholic schools for the Diocese of Peoria, said the years of service of several principals also will be acknowledged. They include the day’s host principal, Ron Dwyer of
St. Mary’s School in Kickapoo, who has served for 15 years; Richard Morehouse, principal of Epiphany School in Normal, 20 years; and
Kay O’Brien, principal of Holy Trinity School in Bloomington, 10 years.

Bishop Jenky will welcome student representatives from schools around the diocese to St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria on Wednesday, Sept. 10, for a Catholic Schools Mass at 10:30 a.m. Once an annual tradition, the Catholic Schools Mass has not been celebrated for two years. During that time, the bishop has traveled to each of the four regions of the diocese to
celebrate liturgies for Catholic Schools Week, Brother William explained.

In the future, the regional Catholic Schools Week Masses and the Catholic Schools Mass in September will be celebrated in alternate years.

Another special event will take school representatives to the State Capitol in Springfield for a rally next spring. Sponsored by the bishops of Illinois, the March 4 rally is designed to garner support for programs that serve the public good, such as Catholic schools and the services provided by Catholic Charities.

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This story was part of a Back to School section in the Aug. 3 issue of The Catholic Post. Our Web site offers only a sampling of what is in the newsprint edition, including our many special sections. To receive the weekly newspaper of the Diocese of Peoria by mail, call 1-800-340-5630 for details or click on our “How to Subscribe” link.

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