Religious Honored in Wheeling
By Colleen Rowan
Women and men religious of the diocese were honored for their ministry and service at the annual Mass and Appreciation Dinner. This year’s gathering was held at St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Wheeling with Bishop Mark E. Brennan as the celebrant of the Mass.
“Today we recognize and show our esteem for consecrated women and men who have served or who are still serving in our diocese,” the bishop said in his homily. “Ladies and gentlemen you have been and still are faithful servants, faithful stewards of the resources that God has given you—your talents, your energy, your dedication to others, your love for God’s people.”
Communities of sisters and brothers attending were the Congregation of St. Joseph, Dominican Sisters of Peace, Eudist Servants of the Eleventh Hour, Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Heart, Sisters for Christian Community, Sisters of St. Joseph of Pittsburgh (Baden), and Marist Brothers of the Schools. Concelebrating the Mass was the parish’s pastor, Msgr. Paul Hudock, and newly appointed vicar general of the diocese, Msgr. Gene Ostrowski, V.G., who Bishop Brennan noted served for many years as a Marist brother before becoming a priest.
Continuing his homily, Bishop Brennan emphasized to the gathered religious that their congregations have left the diocese schools, hospitals and many good works as well as endowments to continue in some fashion those good works. “But your primary service has been to give of yourselves,” the bishop said to the gathered religious, “that’s what really you’ve been doing, giving of yourselves through the days and the years for our benefit and that of the whole community.”
The sisters and brothers and religious priests have shown all, vividly, the value of community life in poverty, chastity and obedience, the bishop said. “When lived out well those vows and the community life sustain us and remind the rest of us, the secular clergy and the laity, that we are a religious family,” he said. “Thank you my religious sisters and brothers for that witness.”
Bishop Brennan blesses women and men religious from around the diocese during the annual Appreciation Mass for Religious in Wheeling Sept. 21. Also pictured is Rev. Mr. Doug Breiding, who served as deacon of the word. This year’s Mass was celebrated at St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Wheeling. (Colleen Rowan Photo)
Women and men religious from around the diocese stand for a blessing by Bishop Mark E. Brennan during the annual Appreciation Mass for Religious in Wheeling Sept. 21. This year’s Mass was celebrated at St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Wheeling. (Colleen Rowan Photo)
This was met with a round of applause from the congregation.
At the end of the Mass, all of the gathered religious stood for a blessing by Bishop Brennan.
“We give thanks to you for responding to God’s call and consecrating your life to Christ and to the service of your brothers and sisters in the church,” the bishop said to them, “and we confidently pray that God who has begun this good work in you may bring it to completion in the day of Christ Jesus.”
The bishop then bestowed the blessing upon them, “May God who is the source of all good intentions enlighten your minds and strengthen your hearts. May he help you to fulfill with steadfast faith all you have promised.”
Following the Mass, all gathered at the parish hall for the dinner. The gathering is sponsored by the diocese’s Office of Consecrated Life. Sister Ellen Dunn, OP, delegate for Consecrated Life for the diocese, recognized religious present who are celebrating jubilee anniversaries this year: from the Congregation of St. Joseph, Sister Caroline Benken, CSJ, celebrating her 70th anniversary, and Sister Mary Clark, CSJ, celebrating her 60th anniversary. Also present at the dinner and recognized was Marist Brothers of the Schools Brother John McDonagh, FMS, who is celebrating his 60th anniversary.
Religious celebrating jubilee anniversaries this year, but not present at the dinner are: Sister Rita Marie von Berg, CSJ, celebrating her 80th anniversary; Sister M. Joanne Obrochta, SAC, celebrating her 65th anniversary; Sister Joan Marie Coleman, OSF, and Sister Carole Riley, CDP, celebrating their 60th anniversaries; and Sister Karen Kirby, CSJ, celebrating her 50th anniversary.
Sister Erin McDonald to Profess Final Vows with Congregation of St. Joseph
WHEELING—The Congregation of St. Joseph is pleased to announce Sister Erin McDonald, CSJ, will profess final vows as a Sister of St. Joseph on Saturday, Oct. 5. The Liturgy will be held at Gesu Catholic Church, 17180 Oak Drive, Detroit, at 1:30 p.m. The ceremony will be attended by members of the Congregation’s Leadership Team as well as other sisters, colleagues and friends.
Originally from Massachusetts, Sister Erin had an early connection with the Sisters of St. Joseph of Boston. “When I was a child, my grandmother took me to work with her at St. Raphael’s Convent in Boston. She sat me down in the kitchen with her while she cooked for the sisters. Those sisters influenced my earliest memories,” she recalls fondly. Sister Erin is the daughter of Debbie and Tom McDonald of Cape Cod.
During the summer of 2000, Erin connected with the Sisters of St. Joseph in Wheeling when she participated in the Volunteers in Mission Program. She later moved to Wheeling to complete her Bachelor of Psychology degree at Wheeling Jesuit University and later received a Master of Social Work degree from West Virginia University and a Master of Pastoral Studies degree from Loyola University in New Orleans. She was accepted as a candidate with the Congregation of St. Joseph in 2012 in Wheeling and professed first vows in 2015.
Seminarian Justin Golna Ordained Deacon
By Colleen Rowan/The Catholic Spirit
VATICAN CITY—Wheeling-Charleston seminarian Justin Golna was among 32 men ordained to the diaconate Oct. 3 at St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City by Bishop Robert Deeley of Portland, Maine. As a transitional deacon, Golna will spend time preaching the Gospel preparing for ordination to the priesthood.
Golna is currently studying for a licentiate in canon law through the Gregorian University in Rome.
“I have been privileged to have known Justin since when I was in seminary, and I have seen his great love for Christ and his church,” said Father Brian Crenwelge, director of Vocations for the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston, who attended the ordination. “Justin has now been configured to Christ the Servant and has been consecrated for service for the people of God. I look forward to next year when he will be ordained as ‘another Christ’—a priest of Jesus Christ for the people of West Virginia.”
Also attending the ordination was Very Rev. Dennis R. Schuelkens, Jr., V.E., episcopal vicar for clergy for the diocese.
During his diaconate ordina-tion, Deacon Golna promised obedience to the bishop and his successors and took on the vow of celibacy. He was vested with the stole and dalmatic which are worn by deacons during liturgies. Bishop Deeley then presented the Book of the Gospels to Deacon Golna so that he may proclaim the Good News and model his life after Christ.
“Receive the Gospel of Christ, whose herald you have become. Believe what you read, teach what you believe, and practice what you teach,” Bishop Deeley said as he presented the Book of the Gospels to Deacon Golna.
Deacon Golna’s priesthood ordination is slated for the summer of 2020.
Deacon Golna, 30, is originally from Washington, Pa. He is the son of John and Deborah Golna. He received a bachelor of arts from Wheeling Jesuit University and a master’s in philosophy from Duquesne University. His home parish is Our Lady of Peace in Wheeling.
Look for coverage of Deacon Golna’s diaconate ordination in The Calling Vocations Newsletter in the Oct. 18 issue of The Catholic Spirit.
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