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Bishop Tylka takes to the air to bless fields, farmers as planting season begins

Bishop Louis Tylka is strapped in and ready to bless farm fields of the Diocese of Peoria from the air, thanks to the use of a helicopter provided by OSF Aviation on April 21. At right, the bishop looks out at the farm of Helen Gillen in rural Monmouth. He would stop to bless the fields and family there and then continue to fly in all directions to offer a blessing "that keeps going" for the rest of the diocese. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems and For The Catholic Post/ Phillip Lee)

MONMOUTH — Bishop Louis Tylka took to the air by helicopter April 21 to bless farm fields in the Diocese of Peoria as planting season was about to begin. His trip, made possible by OSF Aviation, included a stop at the farm of Helen Gillen and her son, Dave, longtime members of Immaculate Conception Parish […]

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Joy, peace as nearly 300 across diocese received into the church at Easter Vigil

There are smiles all around as Gretchen Lansford is confirmed by Father Andru O'Brien at the Easter Vigil at St. Matthew Church in Champaign.Standing behind her is her son, David, who was her sponsor. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

CHAMPAIGN — Gretchen Lansford wanted to share the faith that had become foundational to her son, David, and his family, and at the Easter Vigil at St. Matthew Church here, her prayers were answered. She was one of six people baptized in other faith traditions who made a profession of faith and were received into […]

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First Spanish Father-Son Encounter a joint program of diocese, OSF Healthcare

In addition to some serious talk about the transition from being a boy to becoming a man, participants at the first Spanish Father-Son Encounter took the opportunity to have have fun while being physically active on April 9. Here they are running a three-legged race. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

MAGNOLIA — Fathers and sons from Spanish-speaking communities around the Diocese of Peoria accepted the invitation to get away and spend the day together to talk about life and what it means to be a man, and to take time for prayer at the Sacré-Coeur Retreat Center here. A pilot program for boys ages 10 […]

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‘Stations through the Streets’ urge seeing and loving Jesus in the poor, suffering

Father Jeremy Freehill, pastor, and those taking part in the "Stations through the Streets" on Good Friday leave the Garden of Hope at St. Ann Church and begin a prayerful two-mile walk through Peoria's South Side neighborhoods. Carrying the cross is Diego Uribe. (The Catholic Post/Tom Dermody)

The Stations of the Cross conducted on Good Friday at St. Ann Parish in Peoria did not move from one artistic representation of Jesus’ journey to Calvary to another. Instead, participants walked from vacant lots to boarded-up buildings, traveling past taverns, barking dogs and across busy streets. “Are we ready to go to one of […]

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In Easter Message, Bishop Tylka offers five ‘foundations’ for diocese going forward

Bishop Tylka celebrates Easter Sunday Mass at St. Mary's Cathedral in Peoria on April 17. In an extended Easter message to the faithful of the Diocese of Peoria, the bishop called Evangelization, the Eucharist, Discipleship, Vocations, and Archbishop Fulton Sheen as foundations to build upon in the coming years. (Photo for The Catholic Post by Lynn Kavelman)

Following is the full text of a message from Bishop Louis Tylka released on Easter Sunday, April 17, 2022. EASTER 2022 Dear People of God in the Diocese of Peoria, Every year as we celebrate Easter, we hear from the Gospels of the first encounters with the Good News: “Jesus has risen from the dead!” […]

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European church leaders ask Russian patriarch to support Easter truce

A woman wipes the rain from the headstone of a loved one in order to write a message on the cross in Bucha, Ukraine, April 10, during the Russian War. (CNS/Alex Kent)

By Cindy Wooden / Catholic News Service ROME (CNS) — European Catholic and Protestant leaders echoed Pope Francis’ appeal for an Easter cease-fire in Ukraine, and they asked Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill of Moscow to support it. “We are writing to request your public support for this initiative,” they wrote to the patriarch, who has […]

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Our Lady of Grace Catholic Academy in East Moline will remain open; review set

Our Lady of Grace Catholic Academy in East Moline. (Photo from olgca.org)

EAST MOLINE — Parents, students and faculty at Our Lady of Grace Catholic Academy learned on April 12 that the school, which had been slated to close at the end of this academic year, would remain open. The good news came in a statement from Bishop Louis Tylka. “We have determined that our previous decision […]

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‘The church alive, gathered’: Bishop Tylka blesses holy oils at packed Chrism Mass

Bishop Louis Tylka pours the balsam into the oil for the Sacred Chrism. He would stir it and breath over the mouth of the vessel, calling down the Holy Spirit in blessing. The Chrism Mass takes its name from the consecration of this oil. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

As he looked out over the people who filled St. Mary’s Cathedral for the Chrism Mass on April 12, Bishop Louis Tylka voiced what everyone was thinking: “What a blessing it is to see the church alive and gathered here today.” Traditionally celebrated during Holy Week, the Chrism Mass in 2020 was delayed six months […]

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Ukraine: Russian soldiers attack Caritas office in Mariupol, ransack seminary

The Caritas Ukraine office in Mariupol is pictured in a screenshot. In a statement published on its website, Caritas Ukraine said several people "were hiding from shelling and looking for a safe haven" in its Mariupol office when a Russian tank fired on the building, killing seven people. (CNS screenshot/Caritas Twitter feed)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Russian forces in Ukraine attacked a Caritas office in Mariupol and a Catholic seminary in a small village north of Kyiv, prompting renewed calls for an end to the war and to the targeting of innocent civilians. In a statement published on its website, Caritas Ukraine said several people “were hiding […]

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Changes to tax credit scholarship program pass, await governor’s signature

Sen. Bill Cunningham, D-Chicago, greets supporters of HB 4126 from Chicago, Joliet and Peoria as he prepares to enter the Senate Executive Committee hearing to discuss the legislation at the State Capitol in Springfield. To his left is Robert Gilligan of the Catholic Conference of Illinois. The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems

SPRINGFIELD — Weeks of advocating for improvements to the Invest in Kids Act paid off for parents, school administrators and supporters when House Bill 4126 was passed unanimously by both houses of the Illinois General Assembly on April 7. Empower Illinois, the scholarship granting organization at the forefront of the advocacy effort, noted that the […]

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