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Schools’ office names distinguished principal, pastor, and teacher of year

Dr. Noreen Dillon is congratulated by students at St. Mark School in Peoria on Principal Appreciation Day after learning that she had been named Distinguished Principal of the Year by the diocesan Office of Catholic Schools. Also recognized were Msgr. Mark Merdian, pastor of St. Pius X School in Rock Island, as Distinguished Pastor of the Year, and James Taber, longtime science teacher at Central Catholic High School in Bloomington, as Distinguished Teacher of the Year.

In the season of thanksgiving, the Office of Catholic Schools of the Diocese of Peoria is recognizing three people who have given many years of service to Catholic schools. They are Msgr. Mark Merdian, pastor of St. Pius X School in Rock Island, Distinguished Pastor of the Year; Dr. Noreen Dillon of St. Mark School […]

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Diocese’s ‘distinguished’ educators of year surprised, humbled by recognition

Receiving recognition from the diocesan Office of Catholic Schools for 2018-2019 are, from left: Msgr. Brian Brownsey, pastor of St. Mark Parish in Peoria, Distinguished School Pastor of the Year; Eileen Lohr, longtime kindergarten teacher at St. Vincent de Paul School, Peoria, Distinguished Teacher of the Year; and Randy Simmons, principal of Peoria Notre Dame High School, Distinguished Principal of the Year.

“Distinguished” isn’t a title that sits easily with the pastor, principal and teacher being honored by the diocesan Office of Catholic Schools. In fact, each admitted to being surprised by the honor, which was announced in late December. “I’m humbled by it,” said Randy Simmons, who was named Distinguished Principal of the Year. He leads […]

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Awards bestowed as Mass, luncheon with principals closes school year in diocese

Among those recognized by the Office of Catholic Schools at its year-end Mass and luncheon with principals were, from left: Krista Hinkley of The High School of Saint Thomas More, Distinguished Teacher; Anita Kobilsek of Holy Cross School in Mendota, Distinguished Principal; Father William Miller of Costa Catholic Academy in Galesburg, Distinguished Pastor, and Sally Martin of St. Mary School in Kickapoo, Distinguished Teacher. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

Encouraging the principals of Catholic schools around the Diocese of Peoria to savor every moment of their summer vacation, Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, said he looked forward to seeing them rested and “all charged up” in the fall. At the Mass marking the end of the school year, which was held in the Our […]

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Putting children first: Fr. Miller is named diocese’s Distinguished School Pastor

Father William Miller, the Diocese of Peoria's Distinguished School Pastor this year, is shown with kindergartners during a recent visit to Costa Catholic Academy in Galesburg. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

GALESBURG — One of the first things Rosminian Father Joseph Costa did when he arrived in Galesburg in the 1870s was to start a Catholic school. While much has changed in education — and the world — over the years, the current canonical pastor of Costa Catholic Academy said it is important to focus on […]

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Meet Fr. Stephen Willard, the diocese’s Distinguished School Pastor for 2015-16

Father Stephen Willard prays with a class at St. Patrick School in Washington. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

WASHINGTON — If Father Stephen Willard had his way, every child would receive a Catholic school education, and ability to pay should not be an obstacle, according to the Diocese of Peoria’s Distinguished School Pastor for 2015-16. “People are very generous in the parishes. We have tuition assistance funds. Sometimes it might be difficult, but […]

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