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Sister Sandra Brunenn, OSB, reflects on her eight years as Benedictine prioress

"My satisfaction comes both in the directions we set for ourselves and also in the work we've done to help that all come to fruition," said Sister Sandra Brunenn, OSB, of her eight years as prioress of the Benedictine community at St. Mary Monastery in Rock Island. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

ROCK ISLAND — As Sister Sandra Brunenn, OSB, looks back on her eight years as prioress of the Benedictine community at St. Mary Monastery, she finds joy in what the Sisters have accomplished together and is excited for what is to come. The Sisters of St. Benedict have started a discernment process that will lead […]

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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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Public safety workers prayed for, thanked at Blue Mass in Rock Island

Auxiliary Deputy James Schmedding of the Henry County Sheriff's Auxiliary receives Communion from Father Luke Spannagel, pastor of Sacred Heart and St. Mary parishes in Rock Island, during a Blue Mass hosted at Sacred Heart Church on Sept. 29. Public safety workers from throughout the Quad Cities region attended. (Provided photo/Kelly Haertjens)

ROCK ISLAND — At a Mass during which gratitude was expressed to first responders and prayers lifted for their protection, an example of their readiness to serve played out at Sacred Heart Church here on Sept. 29. As the Gospel was proclaimed by Deacon Gayle Cyrulik — a retired police officer who is now manager […]

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Benedictines in Rock Island hope ‘virtual monastery’ tour leads to in-person visits

The Virtual Monastery Experience gives visitors an opportunity to see what St. Mary Monastery in Rock Island offers so they will feel more comfortable coming in person and perhaps considering religious life. (Provided photo/Mandle Design Inc.)

ROCK ISLAND — It’s a question Sister Stefanie MacDonald, OSB, is asked often when people find out she lives in a monastery: “Can I go there?” “They think they can’t go in,” said Sister Stefanie, director of vocations for the Benedictine Sisters of St. Mary Monastery in Rock Island and a preschool teacher at Our […]

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Finally, a ‘Bingo!’ Rock Island couple wins Post’s diocese-wide game, grand prize

Tom and Jan DeSmet hold their winning Bingo card outside their Rock Island home. The longtime members of St. Pius X Parish successfully matched all numbers within the outlined blue cross and qualify for the grand prize of a $5,000 furniture shopping spree from Sherman's. (The Catholic Post/Tom Dermody)

ROCK ISLAND — The virtue of patience is paying off for Tom and Jan DeSmet, the apparent sole winners of The Catholic Post’s diocese-wide Bingo game and its grand prize of a $5,000 furniture shopping spree at Sherman’s. That the DeSmets, members of St. Pius X Parish in Rock Island for more than five decades, […]

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Knights’ Holy Family icon presented to Rock Island church in Fr. Logan’s memory

Members of the Honor Guard from the Knights of Columbus, Father Bader Assembly No. 1922, are pictured with an icon of the Holy Family that was presented to Sacred Heart Parish in Rock Island during a Mass on Dec. 30, the feast of the Holy Family. The image, awarded by the Peoria Diocese Chapter of the Knights of Columbus, includes an inscription dedicating it in honor of Father Johnjoseph DePorres Logan, former pastor who died in early 2016. (Provided photo/Chris Mandle)

ROCK ISLAND — A framed icon of the Holy Family that has been utilized around the Diocese of Peoria for three years in conjunction with Knights of Columbus-sponsored programs has found a permanent home at Sacred Heart Church here. The image was presented to the parish by the Peoria Diocese Chapter of the Knights of […]

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Sister Joanne Di Iulio, CHM, dies at 92; taught at Alleman H.S. for three decades

Sister Joanne Di Iulio, CHM

DAVENPORT, Iowa — Sister Joanne Di Iulio, CHM, a longtime teacher at Alleman High School in Rock Island, died Dec. 8, 2018, at Bishop Drumm Retirement Center in Johnston, Iowa. She was 92. Visitation is planned for Friday, Dec. 14, at the Humility of Mary Center in Davenport, beginning with a rosary at 4 p.m. […]

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Real Presence, music draw hundreds to 177 Project events in Rock Island, Champaign

Catholic musicians Greg Boudreaux, left, and Ben Wagner, right, performed as past of the 177 Project evening at Sacred Heart Church in Rock Island on Sept. 20. They are among 24 musicians taking part in the 177 Project, a nationwide tour of eucharistic adoration and music. In the center, Father Anthony Co elevates a monstrance containing the Blessed Sacrament during a Holy Hour that was the focus of the evening. A second evening was scheduled the following night at St. John's Catholic Newman Center in Champaign. (The Catholic Post/Tom Dermody)

ROCK ISLAND — “We need to be here, right?” Catholic musician Greg Boudreaux asked the question moments after 300 people had spent an hour adoring Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament at Sacred Heart Church here during a 177 Project event on Thursday evening. “Especially at this point in our church, especially at this moment in […]

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Benedictines host interfaith prayer service to ‘Keep Todas Familias Together’

Sister Sandra Brunenn, OSB, prioress of St. Mary Monastery in Rock Island (second from left), and guests are silent as the monastery bell tolls, calling them "in sadness to stand in solidarity with our suffering brothers and sisters" as an interfaith prayer service begins July 14. Sister Mary Core, OSB, (at left) serves as the master of ceremonies. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

ROCK ISLAND — With joined hearts and voices, the Benedictine Sisters of St. Mary Monastery and 60 women, men and children prayed last Saturday morning for the families that have been separated at the U.S. border and all those “who have fled their homes seeking freedom, employment, justice and peace.” “As we pray today for […]

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Send a note as Sr. Cecelia, former music teacher in Rock Island, turns 100 June 26

Sister Mary Cecelia Vandeberg dressed for music ministry as a young Sister of Humility (left) and in 2018 as she approached her 100th birthday on June 26. Still going strong, she visits nursing home residents once a week and makes a Holy Hour every afternoon.

DAVENPORT, Iowa — Sister Cecelia Vandeberg, CHM, once helped to fill the halls of St. Pius X School in Rock Island with music. Now the Congregation of the Humility of Mary is inviting friends and former students to fill her mailbox with cards and letters for her 100th birthday. Sister Cecelia will reach that milestone […]

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