Back to school, August 3, 2018

The Diocese of Wichita worked with a book publisher for a new religion book series that will be introduced this year. (Copyright 2018 RCL Benziger)

Catholic schools to use new religion book
Information about the Diocese of Wichita included in the religion curriculum for Catholic school students was always available to teachers, but now it’s all in one place.
Jamie Finkeldei, associate superintendent of Catholic Schools, said the Catholic School Office worked with the publisher to incorporate information about the diocese, stewardship, and Servant of God Emil Kapaun, whose cause for sainthood is under consideration by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints.
Catholic schools are not required to adopt the textbook, “Blest Are We Faith in Action,” Finkeldei said, “We wanted to provide this as an option because no textbook really aligns with our curriculum.”
He said the new textbook would benefit teachers, especially new teachers who are learning the curriculum.
“We have had all this in places,” Finkeldei said, “but now it’s all in one spot for the teacher. Anything we can do to make a teacher’s job easier. It’s going to streamline their work and make it better, ultimately, for kids.”
Anne Battes, the publisher at RCL Benziger in Cincinnati, Ohio, said the publishing company was assisted by a group of teachers.
The textbook shares the rich history and tradition of the diocese and the Catholic faith with the students, she said in a news release. “The…series was also a way to integrate the diocesan religion standards into all of the lessons throughout the year and provide the child safety lessons from Virtus, in the teacher’s guide.”
She added that the series has been found to be in conformity with the Catechism of the Catholic Church through the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops and the additional content is approved by Bishop Kemme.
“Dr. Finkeldei and the diocesan leadership offered knowledge, flexibility, and a tremendous working relationship in the development of the customized religion series,” Battes said.
“It was a privilege to work with the diocese and we consider this a very beneficial collaboration in sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ and the good works in the Diocese of Wichita. We hope that the students, families, and teachers, as well as the diocese, will go forth on this journey praying with us, ‘Blest Are We!’”

Catholic school students in the Diocese of Wichita using the new religion books will learn the canonization process the diocese is taking with the cause of Servant of God Emil Kapaun.
Religion students using the new book will learn about Bishop Carl A. Kemme’s coat of arms.
Immaculate Heart of Mary Sisters will begin teaching at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish schools in Pittsburg this fall. From left, are Sisters Mary Ann Kirkland, Sister John Marie Zwenger, Sister Mary Clare Johnson, and Sister Mary Lucia Stuhlsatz. (Courtesy photo)

IHMs now teaching in Pittsburg
Four Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary will be teaching at St. Mary’s Colgan Catholic schools in Pittsburg beginning this fall.
Sister John Marie Zwinger will teach Catechesis of the Good Shepherd in grades K-6 and music for K-1. Sister Mary Clare Johnson will teach fifth grade. Sisters Mary Ann Kirkland and Mary Lucia Stuhlsatz will teach junior and senior high school religion.
The IHMs have previously visited the parish and the St. Pius X Catholic Student Center at Pittsburg State University, but the establishment of a convent is the fulfillment of a longtime desire, said Sister Cecilia Marie Hammersly from the IHM motherhouse near Colwich.
“It’s something that we have always wanted to do,” she said, “but we would need to have enough positions available for a convent, for community life, to be there as well.
Father Michael Baldwin, who was pastor at the time, contacted the IHMs when a convent became available along with teaching positions. “Mother Mary Magdalene was excited about embracing that prospect of going down to Southeast Kansas,” Sister Cecilia Marie said.
Father Baldwin is now part of the formation team at the St. Joseph House of Formation for seminarians of the Diocese of Wichita located on the St. Joseph Parish, Wichita, campus. Father Jerome Spexarth is the current pastor in Pittsburg.
The parish is eager to welcome the sisters, Sister Cecilia Marie said. “Every time we go to a diocesan event, someone comes along and says, ‘I’m in Pittsburg, are you one of the sister’s coming down?’”
The IHMs are excited to expand their presence in the diocese, she said, adding that the IHMs will now be in all four Catholic high schools in the diocese.
There are many parishioners in Southeast Kansas who have a love of sisters, but many of the children have never seen sisters, she said. “We can now witness to the gospel and to religious life at the same time.”
Want more about the sisters?
Additional details about the sisters are available at

Adam Butler in front of his new school. (Courtesy photo)

Adam Butler is now responsible for an entire school, after 11 years as a Catholic school teacher.
Butler is the new principal of Sacred Heart Catholic School in Arkansas City after serving as a teacher at St. Cecilia Catholic School in Haysville.
“I’ve been working towards an administrative degree for a while,” he said from his office. “It seemed like Ark City was a place that I could fit in well and do well.”
Butler said he is looking forward to building relationships with the community, the parish, and with the staff and students “to form disciples of Christ.”
“That’s what I’m really excited about. Working with the students and spreading Christ’s love and the Good News here in Ark City.”
Jamie Finkeldei, associate superintendent of diocesan Catholic schools, said Butler is an outstanding teacher whose talents will translate well to administration.
“His genuine love of children and his tireless work ethic will endear him to the Sacred Heart community,” he said.
“St. Cecilia will miss him dearly, but their loss is Sacred Heart’s gain. We also love it when teachers are able to move up in our system because they already understand and live the mission of creating disciples of Jesus Christ.”

Teachers learn new discipline techniques
Discipline situations in many Catholic schools in the Diocese of Wichita will be dealt with in a way teachers and administrators hope will result in forming better persons.
Representatives from 28 Catholic diocesan schools from throughout the diocese participated in the Virtue-Based Restorative Discipline Summer Institute June 25-28 at Resurrection Catholic School in Wichita.
The 250 attendees to the VBRD conference included representatives from the dioceses or archdioceses of Salina, Kansas City in Kansas, Houma-Thibodaux, Louisiana; and Colorado Springs. It was the first time the event was offered outside of the organization’s St. Louis, Missouri, area.
Matt McKee, assistant superintendent of Catholic Schools, said the approach to discipline will help teachers and administrators form better people.
“It’s a way of working with kids, teaching them the right things, the right virtues, the way to act,” he said. “And if they happen to make a mistake, which kids will do, we’re going to implement a different process.
“It’s not going to focus on punishment. It’s going to focus on restoring what happened and on bringing these children back together. So it’s more Christ-like – working together versus you make a mistake and you have a consequence. There will always be consequences, but that doesn’t restore or heal people.”
McKee said the VBRD techniques are being used by schools and entire parishes in Missouri to help communities heal and restore them.
According to the Virtue-Based Restorative Discipline website, the program offers teachers, parents, students, and schools “a way to cultivate virtue while repairing harm from bullying and other hurtful behaviors.”
Lynne Lang, director of the VBRD, said the training attendees received in June is a Catholic response to bullying.
She said in a news release that attendees “learn ways to maintain a positive environment in which adults and youth are accountable and responsible for holy habits of human excellence.”
Discipline is viewed as formative, rather than punitive, Lang said. The training helps prevent and reduce antisocial behaviors through virtue education and restorative practices, resulting in a consistent message that upholds the dignity of the human person.

Administrators readying for school — Nearly 100 Catholic school administrators and many of their pastors attended a back-to-school meeting Tuesday, July 31, in Good Shepherd Hall in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita. They gathered in the hall after the morning Mass. (Advance photo)

Eight Catholic school teachers honored for their years of service
Eight faculty members throughout the Diocese of Wichita are being recognized for their service to Catholic education.
25 years of service
Those being honored for 25 years of dedicated service.
• Joseph Ast, middle school math teacher for St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School in Wichita
• Judith Becker, third grade teacher for St. Joseph Catholic School in McPherson
• Mary Booth, learning strategies teacher for Kapaun Mt. Carmel Catholic High School in Wichita
• Janet Neville, counseling Department chair at Bishop Carroll Catholic High School in Wichita
• Joyce Porter, middle school math teacher for St. Andrew Catholic School in Independence
• Lisa Stewart, second grade teacher for St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic School in Wichita.
40 years of service
Two honorees, both working for Blessed Sacrament Catholic School in Wichita, are being recognized for 40 years of service.
Mary Jones is a first grade teacher, and Pam Loyle is the assistant principal at the school.
All the honorees will be recognized at the teacher conventions hosted annually by the Catholic Schools Office on Aug. 31 in Pittsburg or Sept. 4 in Wichita.

Bishop Kemme to celebrate Red Mass and Blue Mass next month at Cathedral

It’s not a coincidence that this year’s Red and Blue Masses are being celebrated close to 9/11.
The Blue Mass is scheduled for 10 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 9, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, to invoke God’s blessing on law enforcement, firefighters, and all other first responders.
“Part of the Blue Mass celebration and its timing is to remember the first responders who acted so heroically on 9/11,” said Travis Pearson, Planned Giving coordinator for the diocese of Wichita.
“It’s an open invitation to that whole community and you need not be Catholic to attend,” he said. “Bishop Kemme has a great respect for law enforcement and the first responder community and encourages those who are not Catholic to attend the Mass and the luncheon afterward at The Lord’s Diner.”
The luncheon is a way the Diner staff and volunteers can thank the first responder community, Pearson said.
The diocese is associating Servant of God Father Emil Kapaun with the Blue Mass.
“Father Kapaun was a ‘first responder’ who saved bodies and souls in wartime,” he said. “So it’s in the spirit of Father Kapaun that we want to gather people together and honor folks who, frankly, put their lives on the line in service to others.”
The Red Mass will be celebrated at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 6, at the Cathedral.
“Like the Blue Mass, the Red Mass has a tradition and has been around for a long time,” Pearson said.
“It’s celebrated to benefit the lawyers, judges, lawmakers, policymakers – people who run the institutions of society that touch all of us, whether you’re a rich and famous or whether you’re poor and destitute. You can’t go about your day without being touched by institutions of law.”
The Red Mass is celebrated to remind those who work in law- and policy-related jobs of the need to be receptive to the Holy Spirit and tasks and duties they carry out, he said. “And in doing so, carry them out justly and fairly for all that justice is equal for all.”
Dr. Stephen Barr, a professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Delaware, will be the speaker at a dinner after the Red Mass.
“He is a huge proponent of the argument that there is no conflict between faith and science. In fact, he’s a published author on the notion that faith and science are partners and are not incompatible,” Pearson said.
He added that you sometimes hear the argument that faith and science are compatible but that’s usually heard from people of faith. “It’s really interesting to hear a scientist, a physicist, tell you that in his studies of the scientific realm, he sees no conflict.”
Bishop Kemme hopes to establish both Masses as a tradition that is anticipated by both communities, Pearson said.

Red Mass, Blue Mass to be celebrated at the Cathedral
Both the Red and Blue Masses will be celebrated in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita.
• The Red Mass will be celebrated at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 6
• The Blue Mass, will be celebrated at 10 a.m., Sunday, Sept. 9.

Counselor to work at three schools

Charities counselor to work at Christ the King, St. Joe, and St. Anne
Katelyn Aguiar has a passion for working with children and families. This year, she will provide school-based therapy at St. Anne, St. Joseph, and Christ the King Catholic schools in Wichita. She will also provide counseling through Cana Counseling, a ministry of the Diocese of Wichita.
Aguiar, a licensed masters level psychologist, said she enjoys meeting others where they are in life and helping them learn more about who God has created them to be. She earned a master’s degree in clinical psychology from Emporia State University in May 2017.
Through her undergraduate and graduate degrees, she completed two internships and has public mental health experience working in public schools, jails, and parochial schools.
During her internship in community mental health she learned how mental health providers network to provide treatment. It also provided her with exposure to working with clients in a variety of settings, from rural areas to jails.
“That experience impacted my ability to be adaptable in my treatment approach when working with individual clients,” said Aguiar. “Now I enjoy the ability to incorporate faith with flexible treatment, tailored to each client.”
She said the most rewarding aspect of her job is watching the therapy process unfold for clients. Aguiar also enjoys being able to collaborate with school staff and families to provide support for children.
“My favorite moments are those when clients realize that the tools in therapy only help to empower them to make changes they have held in themselves all along.”
Aguiar is a member of Blessed Sacrament Parish, Wichita.

WSU cheerleader honing her counseling skills at Charities

Elise Bunting is familiar with cheering for a cause. As a Wichita State University cheerleader she entertains thousands of fans. As an intern at Catholic Charities she cheers on the staff as she helps them with their communication and marketing needs.
Bunting is studying Integrated Marketing Communications at WSU, and last semester she worked on a project for Catholic Charities. After the semester she was looking for a marketing position, and Catholic Charities reached out to her, while she continues her studies.
“I enjoy working at Catholic Charities because of the organization’s dynamics and mission,” she said. “I’m allowed to hone in on my capabilities, collaborate and work with my coworkers on projects.”
Bunting, who was born in Vietnam, grew up in competitive cheerleading and switched to collegiate cheerleading. She said cheering is a demanding yet fun sport.
“I have a lot of fun dancing, stunting and cheering on the basketball and volleyball players,” Bunting said. “Cheering has made my college career exciting and fulfilling.”
She and her family love animals and have always had three at a time. Currently, they have three rescue dogs.
Upon graduation, Bunting plans to eventually own her own branding firm. She hopes to find time to travel within the next couple of years and experience different cultures and continue volunteering on different non-profit boards.
And just maybe she’ll rescue a few more dogs.

Pittsburg Lord’s Diner cooking up campaign

Youth from St. Anne Parish, Wichita, and St. Vincent de Paul Parish, Andover, helped at the Pittsburg Lord’s Diner Thursday, July 19, on their way to a Steubenville Conference in Springfield, Missouri. (Advance photo)

The Pittsburg Lord’s Diner has cooked up a campaign to keep their patron’s plates full of good food.
The Diner is marketing the Give 365² campaign with a local Rotary Club highlighting the fact that it costs about $365 a day to feed their patrons – who receive a meal 365 evenings a year.
“They’re trying to get every day of the year covered,” said Jan Haberly, director of the diocesan ministry. “They are encouraging folks to donate $365, but people have the option of doing a portion of that for the campaign.”
Joe Dellasega, a parishioner of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Pittsburg, said many people in the community have asked how they can support the ministry to the hungry.
“A simple gift of $1 a day for 365 days by 365 donors will more than offset the meal cost for a year – hence the Give 365²,” he said.
“While the Diner’s mission of serving a meal is being met daily, there are so many other spiritual needs being fulfilled for volunteers, donors and many others. We are so grateful that the Diocese and the Lord’s Diner board had the confidence in us to pursue this amazing ministry.”
Bob Burk, president of the Noon Rotary Club in Pittsburg, said Rotarians are able to serve in many different ways, “but The Lord’s Diner allows us the opportunity to have the greatest impact on our community.”
Haberly said the Pittsburg location was initially heavily subsidized, but that the financial assistance has been cut as the community takes over the funding. “The community support was great from the beginning,” she said. “They have an amazing staff down there…and a great advisory council.”

Want to feed the hungry in Pittsburg?
Those who wish to contribute to the Give 365² campaign may visit

Father J.D. Betzen, parochial vicar at St. Anne Parish in Wichita poses with three Wichita teens who assisted at the Pittsburg Lord’s Diner. From left are Lexi Murphy, Kelly Mai, Jayme Foster. (Advance photo)

Backpack for hungry kids program hopes to expand

Ron and Petrina Krimm-Morley have issued a $15,000 matching challenge to feed hungry Catholic school students in the Diocese of Wichita. (Courtesy photo)

A program to provide extra weekend food to hungry Catholic school children in certain schools hopes to expand this fall to include students in any Catholic school.
Last year Ron and Petrina Krimm-Morley, members of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Wichita, made a challenge donation to help hungry children who went to schools assisted by the St. Katherine Drexel Catholic School Fund.
This year the Morleys are offering to match donations to the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Council’s “Backpacks 4 Kids” food program up to a total of $15,000. The offer is good through Sept. 7.
The program was initially focused on the St. Katherine Drexel schools, but the SVdP hopes to provide weekend food to any Catholic child in the diocese this coming school year – if enough money is raised. It is the quest of the program that no Catholic school child goes hungry. The goal for the year is $70,000.
“As supporters of this worthwhile program for several years, we hope to inspire others to help put extra food in the homes of deserving Catholic school kids,” said Ron Morley. “Our matching gift challenge is one way to do that.”
This offer is a huge boost to the Backpacks 4 Kids Program, according to program coordinator, Joann Cooper. “It’s hard to believe, but there are Catholic school children in our diocese who need a little extra food over the weekend. With the wonderful diocesan tithing program, even low-income families can send their children to Catholic schools. These kids benefit from discounted lunch programs during the school week, but some don’t have much food in the home over the weekends. This matching gift offer will help us immensely!”
The first bags of food were delivered to Catholic children in the program on Sept. 9, 2016. Participation soon increased to over 300 children per week receiving food last school year. The Society of St. Vincent de Paul shares the expense of each bag of food with the Kansas Food Bank and is a primary reason that the Backpacks 4 Kids program can be offered to all Catholic schools. The cost is $5.50 per child, per weekend.
Bishop Carl A. Kemme provided his blessing and support in 2016. “With a diocesan gift to the program, I would like to encourage you to allow pulpit talks to inform our people of this need as well as to seek donations from parishioners and other individuals and business to help us address this alarming need,” he said in a letter to pastors.
“It is a sad truth that hungry children are closer than we might think. If your parish can help in this worthy cause, your assistance will not only be greatly appreciated but you can be sure in knowing that children who are well educated in one of our schools are also being helped with the basic need and right to food.”
Chrissie Barker taught in an area Drexel school last year and stated, “As a child who went through a period of time where we didn’t have enough food in the home, I am very sensitive to this problem. And then, as a teacher in a Catholic School, I saw certain children struggle around every weekend with anxiety, distraction, etc. But now, these kids have the extra food for the weekends and this has helped them significantly.”

Want to help feed hungry students?
Those who wish to feed hungry Catholic schools students and respond to the challenge by Sept. 7, may mail donations to SVdP Backpacks 4 Kids, P.O. Box 780926, Wichita, KS 67278.

Senior citizens are in the prime time of their lives to serve the church, families

By Kathy Mietlicki
Most people are shocked to learn that the average life expectancy in 1900 was just 49 years of age. The current life expectancy is 83. People are living longer and the implications of that continue to impact our society – and our churches.
In the mid-1900s, a person retiring at age 65 could expect to live a few more years after retirement. A person retiring at age 65 now can expect to live another 20 to 30 years. By the year 2030, 20 percent of the U.S. population will be 65 and older, up from 12 percent in 2012. This phenomenon is unprecedented and the experience of aging is changing:
• Retirement age has little meaning in today’s world. My mother-in-law was 87 years old and still working full-time when her store closed. On the other hand, some people with long employment histories at a company are retiring at 55 years of age – with decades of life ahead.
• The unspoken age restrictions on activity are going by the wayside. Older people are no longer sitting in a rocking chair and watching the sunset. I recently read of a 92-year-old man who began training as a jogger and ran many marathons until his death at 98. People in their 60s and 70s are starting second careers, exploring new sports and activities, traveling the country in RVs and on motorcycles, zip-lining, and scuba diving.
• Many people of the traditional retirement age still have at least one parent alive and they find themselves in the role of caregiver.
• More people are living alone. It is estimated that 45 percent of those 65 and older are single, whether by the death of a spouse, divorced, or never married.
The challenges of this growing population include increasing losses through the death of spouses, friends, and family members; chronic health conditions; changing financial conditions; and depression from loss of a sense of belonging and purpose. However, experts identify this time in life as one with many opportunities to grow emotionally and spiritually.
This is a time when people reflect on their pasts and have the opportunity to show gratitude and make amends. This is a time when the search to know God, love God and serve God can culminate into a powerful witness to loved ones and those in their parish family. There is much wisdom gained through life experiences and a sense of history that younger people can benefit from if the older people have an opportunity to share.
Mietlicki is a member of Church of the Magdalen and serves on the Senior Adult Ministries’ advisory council.

Senior adult symposium Sept. 29 at Church of the Magdalen
The Diocese of Wichita’s Senior Adult Ministry that recognizes the need to provide opportunities to integrate seniors into parish and diocesan activities. To that end, an inaugural symposium “Prime Time: Making the Rest of Your Life the Best of Your Life” will be presented from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29 Church of the Magdalen, 12626 E. 21st St. N., in Wichita.
Speaking will be Father John Jirak, Father John Lanzrath, Servant Debora Fisher, and Sharon Witzell. Tables with representatives of area support services and food will be available. For more information, or to receive a flyer, call 316-685-5240 or email

Diocesan news, August 3, 2018

Bishop accepts candidate — Bishop Carl A. Kemme and Seth Arnold smile after the seminarian was accepted as a candidate for ordination to the priesthood during a Rite of Candidacy Mass Sunday, July 29, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita. Arnold is a first year theology student at Mundelein Seminary, near Chicago.
Arnold prays with his family, from left, Adam and Connie Arnold, his parents, and his brother Matt. (Photos courtesy Wayne Mikols)

Bishop Kemme’s calendar
Here is Bishop Carl A. Kemme’s calendar for the next several weeks.
Aug. 3-4: Marian Days in Carthage, Missouri
Aug. 5: Midwest Catholic Family Conference Mass at 11 a.m.
Aug. 6-8: Knights of Columbus Supreme Convention, Baltimore, Maryland
Aug. 9: Wichita Adore at Cathedral with Holy Hour and confessions at 7:30 p.m.
Aug. 12: Congreso Closing Mass at Camp Hiawatha at 3 p.m.
Aug. 13-14: Jesus Caritas in Wichita
Aug. 14: Assumption of Mary Vigil Mass at the Cathedral at 5:15 p.m., Legatus
Aug. 22: Ordination of Bishop Elect Jerry Vincke, Diocese of Salina
Aug. 26: Mass and blessing of St. Joseph House of Formation addition
Aug. 30: Mass of the Holy Spirit at Newman University St. John Chapel, 11 a.m.

Notre Dame professor to speak at NU Oct. 3
Brian Collier, Ph.D., a faculty member at Notre Dame, will deliver the 2018 Hesburgh Lecture at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 3, in the Dugan-Gorges Conference Center at Newman University in Wichita.
Dr. Collier will speak on the topic of “Save Our Schools, Save Our Country, and Save Your Family: a History of Change in Education in America.” The event is free and open to the public.
Dr. Collier holds a doctorate in American Indian History and the History of Education in America. In addition to teaching at Notre Dame, he works with the Alliance for Catholic Education and the Institute for Educational Initiatives.
The event is co-sponsored by the Notre Dame Club of Wichita and Newman University.

Mika Gross to speak at next Date Night Sept. 6
Mika Gross will talk about “Parenting and Marriage: Finding Strengths and Sharing a Vision” at the next Date Night sponsored by the diocesan Office of Marriage and Family.
Gross, a counselor and a member of St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Parish, Wichita, will speak at a dinner that will begin at 6:15 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 6, in the dining room of the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita.
Jake Samour, director of the diocesan Office of Marriage and Family Life, said marriage results in blessing and challenges for couples.
“Couples who learn to understand and respect each other’s’ unique strengths as parents and who work from a shared vision for a way of life in the home are uniquely equipped to navigate the competing priorities, difficult decisions, and crazy schedules of family life,” he said.
The cost is $30 per couple. To register visit and click on the “View Our Program Calendar” link.

Pro-life Justice for All seminar on Aug. 18
A Justice for All seminar will be held from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 18, in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita.
The seminar will help those attending to be able to have a “loving and productive conversation” with a pro-choice advocate.
Check-in begins at 8:45 a.m. in the Pius X Room on the second floor, above the church offices. A pizza lunch is included.
Reservations are requested and may be made by visiting or by calling (316) 683-6426. For more information, visit

Symposium on Venerable John Henry Newman Aug. 13-15
A symposium, “Newman’s View of Education,” will be presented Aug. 13-15 in the Roths Alumni Center at Newman University in Wichita.
Bud Marr, Ph.D., and director of the National Institute for Newman Studies, will give two presentations. The remainder of the conference will consist of workshops and discussion time around Newman’s idea of educating the whole person.
The National Institute for Newman Studies, located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, facilitates scholarly learning and dialogue on the enduring relevance of John Henry Newman’s life, work, and influence to foster intellectual and spiritual growth.
The symposium is sponsored by the Gerber Institute for Catholic Studies.

Father-son outdoor retreat set for Sept. 15
A TrueManhood Outdoor Men’s Retreat will be held from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 15, in Beloit, Kansas.
The event is for men and their sons, ages 13 and older. The retreat mixes Catholic masculine formation with basic weapons training, campfires, time for reflection, meals, the sacraments, and daily Mass.
Those of all faith traditions are welcome. The cost is $75 for an adult male, $130 for a father and son, and $180 for a father and two sons.
Register for the retreat at For more information email or call or text 785-534-2575.

Fulfilled Catholic Bible Study begins Aug. 28
A seven-week upcoming Catholic Bible study will help participants answer common questions about the scriptures.
Why does the Old Testament sound so different from the New Testament? In the Old Testament, God began building a plan and laying a foundation for the beautiful traditions of the Catholic Faith. That plan was fulfilled by Jesus in the New Testament.
“Fulfilled: Uncovering the Biblical Foundations of Catholicism” is an apologetic approach to sharing the Catholic Faith using the Old Testament Tabernacle as a blueprint for God’s plan.
While it is designed as a faith-sharing Scripture study, participants will also gain an understanding of some of the most challenged Catholic teachings.
Join Kathy Mietlicki at the St. Joseph Pastoral Center 437 N. Topeka for the seven-week study from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday beginning Aug 28. The cost is $20, which includes a participant guide. Register by Aug. 21 so that guides may be ordered. To register call 316-685-5240.

Three make Franciscan profession — Three new Franciscans were professed to the St. Anthony Chapter of the Secular Franciscan Order Saturday, July 28, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita. Professed were, from left, Margarita Schulte, Jeanmarie Murry, and Alan Siegman. Father Garret Burns and Father Babu Panninti celebrated the profession Mass. They were assisted by Deacon Matt Siegman, Alan’s son. A reception was held afterward in the Cathedral’s gathering space for about 40 family members and friends. (Photo by Steve Bradshaw)
Solemn signing ceremony — Anna Huffman, left, and Janelle Bergkamp were among the 42 new members of Region 3 Catholic Youth Ministry who participated in an induction ceremony Friday, July 27, at St. Rose Church, Mt. Vernon, for this school year. The ceremony includes signing a commitment as members of the Confraternity of Divine Mercy. Region 3 includes 17 parishes in the western end of the Diocese of Wichita. (Courtesy photo)

Parish news, August 3, 2018

Little gardeners — Children of St. Thomas Aquinas Parish in Wichita have been tending their St. Isidore Garden on the parish grounds this summer. They have been selling the fruits of their labor after Masses. When school starts the vegetables will be incorporated into their lunches. (Courtesy photo)

Symposium for baby boomers Sept. 29
A symposium for baby boomers will be held from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29, at Church of the Magdalen in Wichita.
Senior citizens are invited to the event for food, fellowship, and for inspirational talks about how to make the most of the years ahead. Father John Jirak and Father John Lanzrath will be two of the speakers. Those interested may call 316-685-5240 for a flyer.

Cathedral hosting First Saturday devotion to Immaculate Heart of Mary this Saturday
The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita has initiated a First Saturday devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary following its First Friday devotion to the Sacred Heart.
The First Saturday devotion begins with an 8:30 a.m. rosary and a 9 a.m. Mass for our Blessed Mother.
The First Saturday devotion has four parts, all done with the intention of consoling our Mother’s Immaculate Heart:
• Confession within 8 days of the First Saturday
• Reception of Holy Communion on the First Saturday
• Recitation of five decades of the Rosary
• Meditation for 15 minutes on the mysteries of the Holy Rosary

Interior image of St. Anthony now online
A 360-degree view of the interior of St. Anthony Church in Wichita is now available for viewing.
The interactive image allows the viewer to look around and zoom in to anywhere in the interior of the church.
Those interested may visit
Don McClane, the production manager of the Catholic Advance, composed the image.
The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception is also available for viewing at the 360cities website. Use the search engine there.

Blessed Sacrament poster stewards — Volunteers from Blessed Sacrament Parish in Wichita have finished counting and packaging this year’s stewardship poster for all of the parishes in the Diocese of Wichita. They worked Tuesday evening, July 24, in a meeting room at the Chancery in Wichita. This year’s theme and poster will be revealed in the Aug. 17 edition of the Advance. Over 500 large posters and 1,500 smaller posters were printed this year for distribution. (Courtesy photo)

Spiritual Life Center news, August 3, 2018

New Cursillistas — A men’s Cursillo was held June 28-July 1 at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita. Jim Wells coordinated the event. He was assisted by David Walsh. Cursillo is a movement to help train Catholic leaders. (Courtesy photo)

Class on how to parent teenagers on Aug. 22
Mika Gross, a counselor at The Parent’s Place, will address the challenges that come along with parenting children in their teenage years at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22, at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita.
In her presentation “Whatever! Parenting Teens and Pre-Teens,” Gross will give practical tips and relatable techniques that can be used to help parents through the difficult teenage years without escalating drama in the home.
Want to sign up?
Learn more about this topic and tactics towards better parenting Wednesday, Aug. 22, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita. Register at The cost is $10, which includes the program and refreshments.

Centering Prayer workshop Aug. 18
Fr. Ken Van Haverbeke and others will lead a morning workshop called “An Introduction to Centering Prayer” Saturday, Aug. 18, at the Spiritual Life Center.
“Centering Prayer is a method of silent prayer that prepares us to receive the gift of contemplative prayer,” Father Van Haverbeke said. “It is prayer in which we experience God's presence within us, closer than breathing, closer than thinking, closer than consciousness itself.”
Want to attend? The cost is $15 per person. Advance registration is requested. Visit the Spiritual Life Center’s webpage at to register or call (316) 744-0167.

Theology Institute begins Sept. 15
The Spiritual Life Center Theology Institute begins its fall sessions Saturday, Sept. 15. The institute is an adult religious studies program that offers classes in church history, morality, the sacraments, and scripture.
New attendees are encouraged to enroll. Each semester includes three full Saturday sessions consisting of four 75-minute classes, along with Mass and lunch.
This semester the institute will feature Dr. David Wall, Dr. Joshua Papsdorf, and Jackie Arnold.
The fall session meets on Saturdays, Sept. 15, Oct. 27, and Dec. 1. Each session will meet from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Registration for the entire semester is $75, which includes all three Saturday sessions, lunches, and refreshments.
Want more information? Contact Dusty Gates at or at 316-744-0167. Registration and specific class topics are available at or by phone.

Openings available for Ignatian retreat
“The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola” retreat Aug. 10-12 at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita has openings. Throughout the weekend retreat, participants will be given the tools which will help them to discern the will of God in their own lives.
Kansas native Father Brian Dinkel of the Institute of the Incarnate Word will lead the mostly-silent weekend.
More information and registration is available by logging onto the center’s web site at, and by clicking on Calendar of Events.

Loss of faith topic of August Docentium
James Lewis will talk about why Catholics lose their faith and how to combat that Thursday, Aug. 16, at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita. The program includes dinner and a presentation.
Lewis’ presentation will address five reasons Catholics lose their faith. He will then showcase ways to fight those reasons.
Docentium programs include food, friendship, and learning. Doors open at 6:15 p.m., dinner is served at 6:30, and a lecture follows given on a topic related to religion and culture. The cost is $15 per person.
Details are available at Visit the website to register or call (316) 744-0167. Advance registration appreciated.

Father Eric Weldon featured at Dinner with the Doctors
Father Eric Weldon, pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Colwich, will deliver a presentation about Saint Bernard of Clairvaux Monday, Aug. 20, at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita.
The program, part of the center’s “Dinner with the Doctors” series, includes a meal and pleasant conversation in the Main Assembly Room – surrounded by a one-of-a-kind collection of icons depicting the doctors of the church. After the meal, Fr. Weldon will talk about Saint Bernard in commemoration of his feast day.
Want to learn more about this Doctor of the Church?
The cost for the evening is $15 per person. Dinner with the Doctors will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Spiritual Life Center on Monday, Aug. 28. Advance registration requested. To register, visit

Surviving Divorce series begins Sept. 10
A 12-week series to help those who have suffered through divorce will be offered beginning Sept. 10 at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita.
The Surviving Divorce series was created to bring hope and healing to those who have experienced the pain and loneliness of a broken marriage. It is not only for the newly separated and divorced, but those struggling with issues many years later. It will help participants answer their questions, restore hope, and begin authentic healing.
The series also includes personal testimonies from Catholic men and women who have experienced the breakdown of their families. They share their stories with heart, humor, and wisdom. As the speakers witness to their pain and the healing power of Christ in their lives, participants will laugh, cry, and identify with their journey from heartache to healing.
Surviving Divorce will help participants work through the emotional upheaval of separation and divorce, find personal healing and hope, gain wisdom and comfort from experts and others who share your experiences, and navigate new concerns like custody, court hearings, and finances.
The series will be offered from 7 to 8:30 p.m. beginning Monday, Sept. 10. The cost is $35 and includes a participant guide. To register call 316-744-0167 or email
Surviving Divorce is sponsored by the Office of Marriage and Family Life.

Grief support Sept. 10-Oct. 8 at the SLC
Parish grief ministers and those who have lost a loved one through death are invited to a five-week Catholic grief support program at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita.
The DVD series will be presented from 7 to 9 p.m. begin on Monday evenings from Sept. 10 through Oct. 8. The cost is $20 and includes a participant guide.
The program will give those grieving the loss of a loved one hope, assistance in making wise choices, and an opportunity to make new friends. It combines practical wisdom, sharing, and meaningful ritual that point participants back to Christ.