41 women honored at DCCW Appreciation Luncheon; two special awards bestowed
Much of what they do may go unseen, but Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, assured the volunteers being honored by the Peoria Diocesan Council of Catholic Women on April 27 that their hard work has not gone unnoticed.
“You folks do so much in honor of your church. Please know your bishop — and more importantly, the Lord — thanks you,” he told them at the
opening Mass for the PDCCW’s annual Appreciation Luncheon in Peoria.
Bishop Jenky was the main celebrant for the Mass at St. Mary’s Cathedral. Concelebrants included Msgr. Dale Wellman, the council’s longtime spiritual adviser, as well as Father Keith Walder, pastor of St. Edward in Chillicothe, and Father Timothy Sauppé, pastor of St. Mary in Westville and St. Isaac Jogues in Georgetown.
For his work on behalf of the PDCCW, Father Sauppé received its Imperative Award at the luncheon that followed at the Spalding Pastoral Center. The Diocesan Award was given to Jan and Pete Smith, who worked with Father John Dietzen to found the Family Resources Center in Peoria 37 years ago and continue to be committed respect life advocates.
Also sharing in the applause were 41 volunteers who were nominated for recognition by their parish women’s groups. (A brief description for each volunteer follows this story.)
CHRIST’S HANDS AND FEET
In his homily, Bishop Jenky said Jesus chooses us to be his representatives in this world and asks us to be his witnesses.
Acknowledging that the women gathered at St. Mary’s Cathedral already do so much to build up the body of Christ, he encouraged them to remain “his hands, to be his heart, to be his words of prayer, to make him present to everyone we meet, not so much by what we say, but most of all by what we do.”
It’s not easy in a culture that hates Christ and hates the Catholic Church, Bishop Jenky said, adding that this animosity is “relentless.”
“It’s not easy to be a Christian, but guess what? It was never intended to be easy,” he reminded them. “We must remember that his victory is ours. Jesus has already won the prize. He passed through death so we could live forever.”
In the end, nothing can hurt us,” the bishop assured them.
When the honorees and their guests reconvened for lunch at the nearby Spalding Pastoral Center, Bishop Jenky joined them. He handed out the certificates of appreciation provided by Msgr. Wellman as Kim Padan of Danville, president of Diocesan Council of Catholic Women, called them forward one by one.
“On behalf of the board, I thank you,” she said. “I know we are all very grateful for your service to the church. God bless you.”
Following is a list of the honorees with a brief description of their volunteer service:
— Renee Jackson, Sacred Heart: Treasurer of the Altar and Rosary Society, helps to organize fundraisers for the Altar and Rosary Society and the parish, extraordinary minister of holy Communion.
— Ardith Burton, St. Anthony: Treasurer of the Altar and Rosary Society and a member of its ways and means committee, choir member, cookbook committee, substitute money counter at church, community volunteer.
— Willmeta “Willi” McLaughlin, St. Anthony: At more than 90 years of age she continues to be an active volunteer and member of the St. Anthony Women’s Group, lector, extraordinary ministry of holy Communion, and greeter, one of the coordinators of the parish funeral luncheon ministry and has served as housekeeper for the rectory.
— Pat Woodford, St. John: Co-president of the Altar and Rosary Society, volunteer for many parish committees, cleans the church and parish hall, sings in the choir.
— Jackie Riedesel, St. John Vianney: Memorial flower coordinator at Christmas and Easter for 10 years, helps to serve coffee one month each year for the Altar and Rosary Society, community volunteer.
— Ruth McLaughlin, St. Edward: Her volunteer work has included counting the collection, organizing greeters, helping with funeral dinners, assisting with fundraisers and serving as an extraordinary minister of holy Communion.
— Jody Legett, St. Paul: Helped with the Share Food program, served on the parish council, chaired the grounds committee with her husband for nine years, decorates the church, cooks for the clergy — including Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC — for special occasions.
— Mildred “Millie” Doran, St. Patrick: Active in parish life for 62 years, always working behind the scenes, a “faithful and faith-filled parishioner and caring member of our community.”
— Theresa McNamara, St. Patrick: Active member of the parish for 68 years, member of numerous parish organizations, chair of the funeral dinner committee for 28 years, community volunteer.
— Andrea Kreps, Immaculate Heart of Mary: Initiated a Four-in-One Potluck group and monthly potluck, as well as Galesburg Catholic Moms group, volunteers for the St. Vincent de Paul Society, president of the Costa Community Association for Costa Catholic Academy, annual diocesan appeal chairperson, respect life “prayer warrior.”
— Darlene Noll, Immaculate Heart of Mary: Sends cards for all occasions to parishioners, volunteer and co-chair for the annual spaghetti dinner, provides food for funeral lunches, “vital part of the success of the Ladies of Mary.”
— Olivia Gutierrez, St. Patrick: Former Altar and Rosary Society president, assists with Our Lady of Guadalupe celebrations, helps with funeral lunches, served as extraordinary minister of holy Communion, community volunteer.
— Mary Anne Peterson, St. Malachy: Extraordinary minister of holy Communion, greeter at Mass, co-chairs Winterfest Country Store and spaghetti supper, provides meals for Bishop Jenky and visiting priests, cooks for funeral lunches, member of the wellness committee, worked on parish directories in 2012 and 2016.
— Joyce Webb, St. Malachy: Parish trustee for seven years, served on parish council and parish advisory board, as well as the finance committee, building and grounds committee, strategic planning school committee, and funeral luncheon committee, greeter at Mass, launders and repairs albs for altar servers.
— Pam Prater, St. Isaac Jogues: Lector, member of the finance committee, and helps with funeral dinners, cleaning the church and decorating the church for Christmas and Easter, as well as the chili supper, bake sale and steak dinner.
— Karen Heying, Saint John Paul II: Sings in the choir and folk choir, does blood pressure checks, packs boxes for the missions, member of the Sinsinawa Dominican Auxiliary, volunteers at the hospital, supports respect life efforts.
— Kathleen Markey, St. Paul: Former co-president and secretary of the Women’s Guild, usher and extraordinary minister of holy Communion, has helped with food sales during rummage sales and Lenten pie sales, co-chaired the parish bazaar.
— Jean Waymack, St. Paul: Former president of the Women’s Guild, has been caller and kitchen supervisor for funeral dinners for many years, takes Communion to those who are homebound.
— Joyce Heiple, St. Mary of Lourdes: During her 41 years of music ministry, she has played the keyboard and led the congregation in song at Sunday Mass and scheduled other musicians and song leaders for all the Sunday Masses and Holy Week.
— Phyllis Mosher, Christ the King: Chair of the Social Concerns committee for more than 25 years before retiring last year. She continues to provide leadership for one of the parish’s two meal sites for those in need and the parish rummage sale, and is involved in a variety of other fundraisers and events sponsored by Social Concerns.
— Carmen Castro, St. Mary: Member of the Altar and Rosary Society and Legion of Mary Auxiliary, carnival volunteer, serves as a school lunch and playground monitor, bakes for the school.
— Monica Gonzalez, St. Mary: Lector and extraordinary minister of holy Communion, decorates the church for Christmas and is responsible for taking down and packing the decorations for storage, makes homemade Mexican food for church fundraisers, active in the Neocatechumenal Way.
— Judy Barrick, St. Joseph: Bakes for and participates in annual bake sales, involved in all aspects of church receptions, chairs the parish’s Sympathy Card Committee.
— Rose Hasler, St. Joseph: Extraordinary minister of holy Communion, helped to form the Parents Club for St. Joseph School, volunteered on parish bazaar committees, assisted with church dinners, served on St. Joseph’s Cemetery Committee for more than 20 years and on the Finance Committee for 20 years.
— Donna Cokel, St. Jude: As secretary for St. Jude Parish, she is credited with attending to the details that keep the parish running smoothly while still offering a welcoming smile to all who enter the office.
— Maria Golden, St. Jude: Extraordinary minister of holy Communion, makes about 150 rosaries a month, does alterations and donates the proceeds to the school.
— Jane Harris, St. Jude: Treasurer for the Women of St. Jude and the Diocesan Council of Catholic Women, helps with funeral dinners, serves on the committee for visiting the sick and homebound, launders purificators.
— Joan Bolen, St. Mary: Member of the St. Mary Women’s Guild, provides food for and works at funeral dinners, cleans the altar and sanctuary, maintains the candles, participates in the perpetual adoration program, has volunteered at the food pantry for more than 20 years.
— Gene Hale, St. Mary: Member of the St. Mary Women’s Guild and Daughters of Isabella, provides food for funeral dinners, participates in the perpetual adoration program, longtime volunteer in the food pantry, maintained church candles, laundered altar cloths and linens.
— Sister Anne Germaine Picard, SMP, St. Louis: Serves on teams for Teens Encounter Christ, helps in the school, visits the sick and those in nursing homes, assists with funeral dinners and decorating the church, hosts a weekly prayer group and Bible studies, lector and extraordinary minister of holy Communion, sits on the board of St. Margaret’s Hospital.
— Madeleine Robinson, St. Louis: Former member of the Bishop’s Commission on Women, president of the St. Louis Parents Club and St. Louis women’s groups, has been extraordinary minister of holy Communion and scheduler for more than 15 years, donates food and helps serve funeral dinners, parish council member and lector.
— Rita Tracey, St. Louis: Longtime volunteer has taught Bible School, junior high faith formation classes, high school confirmation and RCIA, was on the parish council when Harkrader Hall was built, member and former president of the Council of Catholic Women, director of the St. Louis Respect Life Committee, part of the church decorating committee.
— Adeline Harvey, Our Lady of Guadalupe: Co-chair of Secret Sisters, Our Lady’s Women’s Group treasurer, helps with funeral luncheons, collection counter, certified day care provider.
— Patricia Linn, Our Lady of Guadalupe: Volunteers in the Adoration Chapel, member of Our Lady’s Women’s Group, collection counter, has helped with funeral luncheons.
— Anna Mae Negray, St. Michael the Archangel: Member of St. Michael the Archangel Altar and Rosary Society and former treasurer, assists with funeral dinners, parish baker, helps with school and parish events and fundraisers, financial secretary of the First Catholic Slovak Ladies Association, community volunteer.
— Marcia Robertson, St. Michael the Archangel: Treasurer of the St. Michael the Archangel Altar and Rosary Society, lector, sacristan, extraordinary minister of holy Communion, CCD teacher, longtime community volunteer.
— Jill Gonigam, St. John the Evangelist: Extraordinary minister of holy Communion, prayer chain, launders altar linens.
— Sharon Miller, St. Mary: Provides leadership for funeral dinners, cooks for the salad luncheon fundraiser, organizes cleaning of the church.
— Dorothy Eggett, St. Mary: Active member of the Altar and Rosary Society, contributes to and works at funeral dinners, bakes and assists with church dinners, donates handmade items to and helps with Altar and Rosary Society bazaars, member of the funeral choir, money counter.
— Toni Potter, St. Mary: Active member of the Altar and Rosary Society, member of daily rosary group and leads rosary at wake services, contributes to funeral dinners, launders and mends vestments, cleans the church and helps with decorating.
— Cathy Welch, St. John: Member of the Altar and Rosary Society, taught CCD, organized pro-life activities.