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Meet the diocese’ s 2020-2021 distinguished education principal, teacher and pastor

From left to right are Jane Barrett of Seton Catholic School in Moline, Distinguished Principal of the Year; Kathy Mazander of St. Mary School in Kickapoo, Distinguished Teacher of the Year; and Father Johndamaseni Zilimu, pastor of Saint John Paul II Parish and Visitation Catholic School in Kewanee, Distinguished Pastor of the Year.

In its Catholic Schools Week section published Jan. 31, The Catholic Post profiled the 2020-2021 outstanding principal, teacher and pastor named in early November by the diocesan Office of Catholic Schools. Following are links to the profiles of Jane Barrett of Seton Catholic School in Moline, Distinguished Principal of the Year; Kathy Mazander of St. […]

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Mass for the Unborn: Now is the time to ‘live the Beatitudes, change the world’

With a bronze image of Our Lady of Guadalupe on his left and the banner for the Diocese of Peoria's Respect Life Ministry on his right, Father William Miller offers the homily for the Mass for the Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children on Jan. 22 at St. Mary's Cathedral. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

Mourning the lives ended by abortion, those who attended the Mass for the Unborn at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria on Jan. 22 were encouraged not to give in to despair, but to trust that God hears and answers prayers. “These times are giving us a great opportunity to live the Beatitudes; to change the […]

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Pro-life ecumenical vigil in Urbana points to hope in a challenging year

Anna Paris of Holy Cross Parish in Champaign places a vase of roses near a pro-life display in the sanctuary of St. Patrick Church, Urbana, during a Community Ecumenical Memorial Prayer Vigil on Jan. 22. Eight area churches sponsored the event on the 48th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court decisions legalizing abortion. (The Catholic Post/Tom Dermody)

URBANA — In the midst of a pandemic, and on the anniversary of the 1973 Supreme Court decisions that have led to a “staggering” amount of death and loss through abortion, the Champaign-Urbana pro-life community turned to God and one another to find hope. “In the past year we’ve had so many unexpected things happen, […]

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Leaders of both parties join Biden, Harris for Mass of thanksgiving at cathedral

President-elect Joe Biden and his wife, Jill Biden, attend Mass at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in Washington Jan. 20, 2021, before his presidential inauguration. (CNS/Reuters)

By Mark Pattison / Catholic News Service WASHINGTON (CNS) — Hours before his inauguration as president, Joe Biden and incoming Vice President Kamala Harris were joined by the spouses and congressional leaders from both political parties for what was termed a Mass of thanksgiving early Jan. 20 at St. Matthew Cathedral in Washington. Among those […]

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Call for a ‘revolution’ of sacrificial love voiced at LaSalle ‘Kneel for Life’ event

A program for the Jan. 16 "Kneel for Life" morning of prayer is seen in the choir loft of St. Patrick Church in LaSalle. The day, sponsored in part by the Knights of Columbus councils of the Illinois Valley, included a rosary, Mass, and the Divine Mercy Chaplet seeking protection for unborn children. (Provided photo/Sue Calderon)

LASALLE — Those seeking to protect unborn children were called to a “revolution” on Jan. 16, one not fought with violence but won by prayer and lives reflecting the sacrificial love of Jesus. Such was the challenge of two priests speaking at a “Kneel for Life” prayer morning planned by the Knights of Columbus councils […]

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OSF OnCall Center blessed in downtown Peoria to house digital health programs

Deacon Joe Knapp, pastoral care and chaplaincy services manager at OSF HealthCare Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria, sprinkles holy water on the third floor of the newly renovated OSF OnCall building at 330 S.W. Adams in downtown Peoria. The facility will house digital outreaches providing services to patients throughout the health care system. (The Catholic Post/Tom Dermody)

The blessing ceremony for OSF HealthCare’s new OnCall building in downtown Peoria on Jan. 14 was limited in scope because of the pandemic, but leaders of the spacious digital health services center took it in stride. “Honestly, how appropriate for us to launch a digital health hub digitally,” said Michelle Conger, chief executive officer of […]

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Pandemic cited among causes as diocese’s schools see an 8.2% enrollment decline

Students were welcomed back to in-person instruction at St. Mary School in Pontiac on Jan. 11. Each class was blessed by Father Adam Cesarek, pastor, and there were gifts and a complimentary lunch for the staff and an ice cream treat for the students. The Pontiac school was one of 11 Catholic elementary schools in the Diocese of Peoria to see an increase in enrollment in the last year. (Provided photo)

In an academic year made difficult by COVID-19, enrollment has provided another challenge for the 42 Catholic schools of the Diocese of Peoria. According to enrollment figures submitted to the NCEA Data Bank for 2020-2021, there are 9,107 students in diocesan schools — a decline of 8.2 percent. That includes a drop of 193 students […]

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Mass, Holy Hour set at cathedral Jan. 22 for legal protection of the unborn

A statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe, long a symbol of the pro-life movement, is carried into St. Mary's Cathedral in Peoria in this photo from a previous Mass for the Legal Protection of the Unborn. This year's Mass and Holy Hour is set for 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 22. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

As the 48th anniversary of the Supreme Court decisions legalizing abortion approaches this Friday, Jan. 22, people are planning to stand up for human life in a variety of ways, including a Mass and Holy Hour at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria. It will begin at 6:30 p.m. with Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, as […]

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Catechist Katie Bogner takes children, families ‘Through the Year with Jesus’

Katherine Bogner holds the cover art for her new book to be released in mid-February by Emmaus Road Publishing. A popular blogger, she is director of religious education at Immaculate Conception Parish in Lacon and junior high faith formation teacher at St. Philomena School, Peoria. (Provided photo)

Reviewed by Nancy Piccione I wanted to write that Katherine Bogner’s new book is a “back to basics” approach to living out the Catholic faith, using liturgical seasons and weekly Gospel readings as framework. But that would underestimate the rich and multilayered resource that Bogner, a local teacher with a global reach online, has created […]

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Deadline nears for tributes to Catholic education heroes of this pandemic period

The Catholic Post will celebrate heroes in education in a section devoted to Catholic Schools Week. We invite readers to tell us about teachers, principals and staff members who have gone above and beyond during this challenging time of pandemic. CNS/Valaurian Waller)

Heroes don’t seek praise, but they deserve gratitude for all that they do on behalf of others. Among those who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic are those who are doing everything they can to provide a good education for thousands of young people across the Diocese of Peoria, as well as formation in the […]

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