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Local News in Brief - November 2015

The Northern Cross - November 2015
Local News In Brief

Bishop Sirba visits BHC

Bishop Paul Sirba distributed Communion to residents of the Benedictine Health Center in Duluth during a Mass to celebrate its 35th anniversary Oct. 13.

Former model Darrow, Davidson come to Virginia

Leah Darrow, former New York professional model and contestant on the reality TV show “America’s Next Top Model,” was the main speaker of the “Meant for More” event at Holy Spirit Church in Virginia, Sept. 30 and Oct. 1. More than 900 people were in attendance from the community and Diocese of Duluth during the two-day event of three presentations, adoration, Sacrament of Reconciliation and Mass. Teenagers and adults listened to Darrow’s witness story of conversion as she emboldened all to have courage to embrace real love as defined by St. Augustine, “desiring the greatest good for your beloved.” Darrow’s witness debunked reality TV as anything but real and spoke passionately about the media’s negative influence over our lives, with its distortion of love and beauty. Offering ways to reclaim one’s God-given beauty and dignity, Darrow touched hearts and minds of all ages to embrace the real, pure love that is Jesus Christ. Nic Davidson, evangelist and youth minister from St. Cloud, challenged all men to greater holiness through purity and service to the church. The event was planned and sponsored by Together for Life, the respect life group of the parishes of Virginia and Mountain Iron.

Holy Family, Hillman, hosts dinner concert

Holy Family Church on Bulldog Lake, Hillman, held its annual fall dinner concert Sept. 19. Everyone was entertained by Big D and the Mute Drummer Band, featuring Father David Forsman, pastor. The concert was a fundraiser to help with winter fuel costs for the parish. The dinner concert, held at Holy Family Center on Bulldog Lake, was attended by about 100 people, who enjoyed a pork chop dinner and entertainment.

Marriage Enrichment retreat in Brainerd Nov. 15-17

The Sacrament of Marriage has the capacity to be a source of life and love for the world. Pope Francis has had the courage to declare now, in the midst of the battlefield of human suffering, the 2014 Extraordinary Synod and the 2015 General Synod on the Family. Inspired by Pope Francis, St. Andrew’s Church, 1108 Willow St., Brainerd, will host a mini-retreat for all young and more “established” married couples. The retreat, guided by Father Anthony Craig, S.T.L., will offer the church’s vision for marriage, a healthy marriage spirituality based upon the virtues and a presentation on the relation between marriage and the Eucharist. Conferences will be imbued with witnesses of holy marriages through married saints. The mini-retreat will take place over the course of three evenings, Nov. 15-17, starting at 5:30 p.m. Sunday and Tuesday will begin with Mass and be followed by a light supper. Attending all sessions will be helpful as they build upon each other, but attending one or two evenings of the retreat will still be beneficial if all cannot be attended. Renew and strengthen your marriage through this great opportunity. For information call the parish office at (218) 829-1340 or email St. Andrew’s is handicapped accessible.

Kenyan priest visits Blessed Sacrament, Hibbing

Brother Charles Njoroge, a Franciscan priest and first cousin of Father Gabriel Waweru, pastor of Blessed Sacrament Church in Hibbing, visited Hibbing and assisted in parish activities. Brother Njoroge is from the small village Klambu in Kenya and has just completed his doctoral studies in Rome in dogmatic theology. He has successfully defended his thesis on the Second Synod for Africa, “The Theme of Reconciliation, Justice and Peace.” He is in the process of preparing it for publication. During this first visit to America, Brother Njoroge has visited the Hull Rust Mine, Duluth Depot Museum, Canal Park in Duluth and Side Lake. He has been active in the sacramental and social life of the parish as well. When he returns to Nairobi, Kenya he will preside over priestly formation of seminarians at Capuchin Friary Langata. Brother Njoroge spoke to residents and answered questions on his life and ministry at a recent gathering at the Hibbing Lee Center.

St. Raphael Knights do service projects

St. Raphael’s Knights of Columbus Council 6791 organized a work group to help mow at parishioner and fellow Knight’s homes while they were away on family business. The men also organized a work group to load and distribute left over books from the St. Teresa’s Guild’s annual book sale to other organizations in the area in need of reading materials. They also coordinated putting the new Mass times on the information sign for St. Raphael’s Church at the intersection of Midway and Seville Roads. The council had prayer sessions at the Building for Women in Duluth for the 40 Days for Life. They also lead the rosary before Masses in the month of October.

Quilt bingo

Holy Family Church, Hillman had close to 200 people come to its annual fall quilt bingo Oct. 11. The ladies of the parish work all year making quilts so there are enough for the bingo. Bingo winners choose the quilt they want. Homemade crafts, popcorn and refreshments were also for sale throughout the day as well as lunch and door prizes. The winner of the quilt raffle was Jeanette Firkus, who is formerly from Hillman but currently resides in Minneapolis. Proceeds go toward fuel and expenses for the parish over the winter.

Slovenian Union offers scholarships

The Slovenian Women’s Union Scholarship Foundation is offering a number of scholarships for the 2016-17 academic year. SWU scholarships of $1,000 and $2,000 will be available for those attending an accredited college or graduate school full time. SWU scholarships of $500 will be offered to adult part-time students taking accredited classes online or attending technical school classes part time. Qualifications are that the applicant be of Slovene ancestry and purchase a membership of the Slovenian Union for the year 2016. Membership will include receiving the “Zarja” magazine and invitation to all Slovenian Union branch activities. Visit for more information.

Eucharstic miracles exhibit in Maplewood

St. Jerome Church, 380 E. Roselawn Ave., Maplewood, is hosting the Vatican International Exhibition of the Eucharistic Miracles of the World, Nov. 13 through 16 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. 126 photographic historically documented Eucharistic miracles from various countries since the Last Supper shows visible proof of Jesus’ presence in the Eucharist. All faiths are welcome. Free admission. Forty hours of Eucharistic Adoration will be held during exhibit. Please call ahead for a group larger than 20 people. For information visit, call (651) 353-7190 or email

Catechesis office thanks CREED Fund

The diocesan office of catechesis wishes to thank the CREED Fund for a grant to assist with the Annual Diocesan Assembly held on Oct. 10. Approximately 275 persons attended the Assembly to learn how to make catechesis, adult faith formation and RCIA more effective in the work of the New Evangelization. This fund, the Catholic Religious Education Endowment Fund, provides for the financial support of educational opportunities for the enrichment of faith and the spreading of the Gospel by the laity, deacons, priests and Catholic schools in the Diocese of Duluth. The fund is supported in part by the Evangelization Through Education capital campaign.

Serrans host seminarians

Nineteen Duluth Serra Ministry members and their spouses joined the Diocese of Duluth seminarians for evening prayer at St. Paul Seminary in St. Paul Oct. 7. The Serran’s hosted a meal for the seminarians at a restaurant in St. Paul. Seminarians Benjamin Lanari, Deacon Paul Strommer, Christopher Wilson, Ryan Anderson, Deacon Charles Friebohle, Beau Braun, Jacob Toma, Kevin Ryan and Jeremy Bock attended the activities. Serra Ministry, named after newly canonized St. Junipero Serra, is a global lay apostolate with the mission to foster and promote vocations, support priests in their sacred ministry, encourage and affirm vocations to consecrated life, and assist Serrans to recognize and respond to God’s call to holiness. For information on Serra Ministry, contact Bill Ohnsted at (218) 349-9629 or at