Priesthood Sunday: Local Catholics pledge thousands of prayers for priests

A priest of the Archdiocese of Detroit extends his hand in blessing while concelebrating the Chrism Mass at the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Detroit. This year, parishioners pledged thousands of hours of prayers for Detroit-area priests as part of a "spiritual bouquet" in honor of Priesthood Sunday. (Detroit Catholic file photo)

Archbishop offers special reflection on Priesthood Sunday during archdiocese's Year of Prayer for Priestly Vocations

DETROIT — When he announced in April the Archdiocese of Detroit would undertake a special Year of Prayer for Priestly Vocations, Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron implored the faithful to take up the urgent task of praying for the local Church's priests.

Underscored by the fact that no men were ordained for the archdiocese this year, the archbishop warned Catholics about the "pressing need" for an increase in vocations, adding that within a decade, if trends hold, the archdiocese will have fewer than half the current number of priests serving in parishes.

In response, the archbishop urged Catholics to make praying for priests — both those already ordained as well as those yet to hear their calling — a central priority.

Local Catholics responded.

In recognition of Priesthood Sunday in the U.S. Church, which is Sept. 25 this year, Catholics pledged thousands of hours of prayers, devotions and intentions as part of a "spiritual bouquet" for Detroit-area priests.

Those who responded were invited to offer specific prayers, holy hours, rosaries, litanies and time spent in adoration for specific priests, or for priests in general. The archdiocese's Office of Priestly Vocations received more than 215 responses — many including letters of thanksgiving and support (below).

In addition to the spiritual bouquet, Archbishop Vigneron released a new reflection on the Year of Prayer for Priestly Vocations, expanding on the themes he offered in his pastoral letter during Pentecost.

Fr. Stephen Burr, rector of Sacred Heart Major Seminary, concelebrates a Mass of the Holy Spirit with other priests, seminarians and deacons to inaugurate the new academic year at the seminary. During the Year of Prayer for Priestly Vocations, Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron has called on Catholics to intensify their prayers for the archdiocese's priests, both those already ordained, those discerning a vocation and those who have yet to hear their call. (Valaurian Waller | Detroit Catholic)
Fr. Stephen Burr, rector of Sacred Heart Major Seminary, concelebrates a Mass of the Holy Spirit with other priests, seminarians and deacons to inaugurate the new academic year at the seminary. During the Year of Prayer for Priestly Vocations, Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron has called on Catholics to intensify their prayers for the archdiocese's priests, both those already ordained, those discerning a vocation and those who have yet to hear their call. (Valaurian Waller | Detroit Catholic)

In his new reflection, the archbishop offered seven new themes for the Year of Prayer for Priestly Vocations, starting with thanksgiving for the "abundance of calls" God has provided, and praying for more men to hear those calls.

"We know that God in His love for the Church will always call a sufficient number of pastors for our service, so there is no shortage of men being called," the archbishop said. "Rather, there is a shortage of men hearing their call. So, we pray that men called to the priesthood are able to set aside the noise of their busy lives so that they might hear in the silence an invitation from our Lord."

The archbishop also prayed that men blessed with a calling will find the "courage" to answer that call, and that communities of believers band together to assist those discerning a vocation.

"The world needs the kingdom of God, so the world needs holy priests," Archbishop Vigneron said. "We pray because Jesus told us to, and as disciples of Christ we follow him so that the Father will be glorified."

The Church continues to pray with confidence, alongside the Blessed Virgin Mary, because it knows God is faithful and will always provide, he added.

"Throughout the Gospels, Jesus tells those around him that whatever they ask of the Father in his name, they will be given," he said. "We know, then, that God will give us what we need in the way he knows we need it. This may not come about in the way that we expect, but we know with certainty that our Lord hears and answers our prayers."

Read Archbishop Vigneron's full reflection for Priesthood Sunday here.

Priesthood Sunday 'spiritual bouquet'

In recognition of Priesthood Sunday, Sept. 25, parishioners of the Archdiocese of Detroit pledged the following prayers, devotions and letters of thanksgiving for their priests.

Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron

Prayers offered: Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Litany of the Sacred Heart, Daily vocation prayers in my internet Facebook prayer groups 1000 priest for the AOD, and Praying for priest.

He inspires us to be better People, better Catholics each day. His Unleash the Gospel movement has electrified Metro Detroit. I am proud he's our Archbishop and believe he walks closely with God.

-Diane Griffith

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Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Stations of the Cross, Litany of the Sacred Heart, Litany of Humility

-Harry Tucci

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Canon Adrian Sequeira

Prayers offered: Rosary

Thank you, Canon Sequeira (and all the Canons in ICKSP), for your tireless efforts to save souls and bring them to Our Lord and Our Lady.

-Nicole Ehred

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Canon Adrian Sequeira, ICKSP

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Abigail Rutila

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Canon Jean-Baptiste Commins, ICKSP

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Abigail Rutila

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Fr. David Lesniak

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Prayer for Priests

Fr. Lesniak's homilies are very spiritually uplifting; he takes the message of the Gospel and drives home what Scripture is saying and how we should apply it in our lives. His method of speaking keeps you focused on what he's saying, and I often leave Mass feeling spiritually uplifted. Our parish is blessed to have him as our Priest.

-Linda Wielkopolan

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Fr James Grau

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Jim has brought a new energy and healing to our parish. He is a caring and thoughtful shepherd to all. We have been very blessed to have this dedicated man of God as our pastor. God’s blessing be upon him always.

-Dcn. Lawrence & Roseanne Ruehlen

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Fr. Andrew Czarnecki

Prayers offered: Rosary, Daily Rosary for a month

-Sister Mary Fagan

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Fr. Andrew Kowalczyk, CSMA

Prayers offered: Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel

Fr. Andrew has been guiding his flock, keeping us ever aware of the need to support the Ukrainian refugees and people of Poland as they face this time of crisis with our prayers and treasure. Thank you for modeling Christ to others.

-Kelly Boll

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Fr. Andrew Kowalczyk, CSMA

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Andrew’s prayer schedule and live streamed Masses were a great help during COVID.

-Janet Yntema

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Fr. Anthony Fernandes, SAC

Prayers offered: Rosary

We are blessed to have Fr. Anthony in the Cayman Islands.

-Joseph Domingo

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Fr. Anthony Fernandes, SAC

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Stations of the Cross

-Suzanne Howden

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Fr. Anthony Man-Son-Hing (outside AOD)

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Anthony is pastor of St. Bernadette Parish, Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada.

-Carol Ann Balls

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Fr. Anthony Richter

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Litany of the Sacred Heart

When Father Tony arrived at our parish, it was an unpleasant situation for all of us. Father listened to our concerns, sometimes bore the brunt of anger, met with us and individuals as well, and brought the love and healing we needed. He continues to reach out to each of us with compassion and understanding. God's choicest blessings to Father!! Thank you so much!

-Mary Lambrix

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Fr. Anthony Richter

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Tony was a great comfort for my husband and I during the last years of my husband’s life. Whenever I asked Fr. Tony to visit, he would hear my husband’s confession, anoint him, and give him Communion. This made it a little easier for my husband to accept his demise. Fr. Tony also complimented me on the care I gave my husband, and this made me feel good. Fr. Tony is a very caring priest. He is a blessing to our parish.

-Claudia Mallette

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Fr. Anthony Richter

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

His love for Jesus and our parish family is incredibly beautiful and inspiring! He has taught me that Confession is a gift, an opportunity to grow closer to Jesus...thank you

-Kim Smith

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Fr. Bradley Forintos

Prayers offered: Eucharistic Adoration

Fr. Brad's compassionate counsel is helpful in the aim to grow in holiness.

-Kimberly Fleury

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Fr. Bryan Shackett

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father Bryan’s ministry has helped us grow closer to Our Lord. Being our son, we have seen how much he gives to others and that he is doing the Lord’s work.

-Lawrence & Mary Shackett

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Fr. Charles Altermatt

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

Fr. Charles is always dedicated, cheery, and joyful. I remember a time when he was quite sick and I was thinking about how tired and worn down he must feel;how I'd be home whining in my bed if I was that congested. But there he was, celebrating mass for us so that we wouldn't miss out. That love of and commitment to serve God was not lots on me. Fr. Charles keeps our parish vibrant with social events and, through bilingual mass, helps folks of different languages feel more connected. We all need that. His answering God's call to priesthood is very much appreciated!!

-Christine Kelly-Williams

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Fr. Charles Altermatt

Prayers offered: Mass

I am a lifelong Catholic and attend Sunday Mass when healthy; otherwise, I participate in the livestream weekly. Fr. Charles offers weekly Adoration before Wednesday morning Mass. Attending Adoration and Mass has encouraged me to attend daily Masses much more frequently. Father loves his parish and is always very encouraging in his homilies.

-Dan Lenossi

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Fr. Charles Altermatt

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-Sylvia Muldoon

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Fr. Charles Mmaduekwe

Prayers offered: Mass

-Roberta Meloche

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Fr. Christopher Muer

Prayers offered: Rosary, Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament

I cannot express how grateful I am for Fr. Christopher. I was in desperate need of a spiritual director and had been searching for a couple years. He was my confessor for about a year when he agreed to meet with me. He has been a tremendous help to me, helping me grow in holiness, ever closer to Our Lord and helping me understand things. It is a tremendous relief to have a priest you can open your soul to and have them guide you. To follow your spiritual director is to follow God's Will and what joy there is in that! As an Associate Pastor at Our Lady of the Lakes, he was such a support to us all during the COVID shut down and his strength and joy were so that it lessened our fears. From the first time I saw him, he radiated joy and love of the Lord and has been truly an example of Christ's love and mercy. He has not just impacted my life here on earth but also my eternal life. I am so grateful for Him. He is a truly another Christ.

-Jenna Konarzewski

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Fr. Clint McDonell

Prayers offered: Rosary

Fr. Clint McDonell is a former associate pastor of Church of the Divine Child. Now, he is an assistant professor of Theology at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. He is also my brother. It has been a true gift to have a priest in the family. He has celebrated marriages and baptisms in our family. The one thing we are blessed with is that he has enriched our spiritual lives, helping us dive deeper into our Faith.

-Kevin McDonell

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Fr. Colin Fricke

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Colin is a joyful priest who is earnestly inspiring his flock. He has a wise head on his young shoulders and inspires us to love and serve our Lord.

-Kelly Boll

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Fr. Cornelius Okeke

Prayers offered: Mass

Fr. Okeke came to our parish when I was contemplating leaving the Catholic faith and going to a modern Christian style of religion. I was getting frustrated with all the judgement that was going on in Catholicism in my community and just feeling out of touch with the faith. Fr. Okeke came to our parish and incorporated so many different ways of teaching us the faith and rejuvenated my spirit again. Whether it be the playing of his guitar or his singing during mass to the implementation of new committees and groups he was able to make the word applicable to everyone's learning styles. He always had a smile on his face no matter what during and after mass and that made me realize that we need to live joyfully each and every day. I have moved away from that area but still communicate with him often over email because he has that personality that you just want to be around because you can feel yourself uplifted around him always.

-Megan Jalbert

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Fr. Cornelius Okeke

Prayers offered: Mass

-Roberta Meloche

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Fr. Craig Marion

Prayers offered: Rosary & Litany of the Sacred Heart

When Father Craig was at St. Paul in Grosse Pointe, he had such a positive influence on my daughter’s faith formation while she was in grade school there. As a current senior in high school, she remembers him fondly, misses him and has applied much of his teaching in her life. Thank you, Father Craig!!!

-Amy Murphy

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Fr. David Burgard

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Kathleen Gayeski

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Fr. David Burgard

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. David’s quiet spirituality has influenced my faith and prayer life. Such a good priest!

-Carolyn Morrin

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Fr. David Cybulski

Prayers offered: Act of Hope every day

Thank you Fr. David for taking action from the place of your spiritual authority as pastor and dean. There is much freedom because of the spiritual battles that are won here through your instrumentality as a priest. From weekly blessings in the school to regular perimeter prayers for the parish or deanery and from your personal prayer to the communal events you host, your presence is irreplaceable. Thank you also for being an enjoyable person and easily approachable.

-Sr. Mary Jacinta Campbell, OP

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Fr. David Pellican

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Frank Gatto

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Fr. David Pellican

Prayers offered: Rosary

Thank You for being a blessing in my life. Like a angel you appeared to help me along my journey. You were there to help me through the mourning of my father and on the blessing of my wedding day. Thank You for all you done for me.

-Stacey Horvath

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Fr. David Pellican

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Barbara Kuspa

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Fr. David Pellican

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. David is an awesome priest. He has helped me so much.

-Therese Oziemski

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Fr. David Pellican

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Alfrida Turner

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Fr. David Preuss, OFM Cap.

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Litany For Clergy and Chaplet of Reparation, Precious Blood For Sanctification and Purification.

Fr. Preuss has helped me in dealing with my grief over losing my mother. Even when he is very busy, he makes time to pray for me and bless me. May God bless him and help him in his ministry at St. Bonaventure's. Thank you, Fr. Preuss, for being a great Capuchin priest.

-M. A. Szepytowski

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Fr. Derik Peterman

Prayers offered: Rosary, Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament

I am a nurse at Huron Valley Hospital; I had a patient emergently needing her Last Rites. After 4 hours of trying to reach local parishes, I reached out to Our Lady of Sorrows and at 1:00 am, Fr. Peterman drove 30 minutes to come administer my dying patient's final Sacrament. He was so kind and loving to the family; he truly was another Christ, bringing His Love and Mercy. I am so grateful to him, and my patient died shortly after. At first, I was frustrated that I couldn't get a hold of a priest, but when Fr. Peterman came, I realized that he was the priest our Lady wanted for this patient and her family. He was from Our Lady of Sorrows, and it was the Feast of the Holy Name of Mary for a woman named Mary. God is amazing; His goodness and mercy unfathomable! Thank you Fr. Peterman!

-Jenna Konarzewski

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Fr. Derik Peterman

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-Jonathan Ligenza

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Fr. Derik Peterman

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-Karina Necoechea

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Fr. Donald Demmer

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Margaret Currier

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Fr. Donald Demmer

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Theresa Dudzinski

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Fr. Donald Demmer

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-Judy Niborski

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Fr. Grayson Heenan

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Stations of the Cross, Litany of the Sacred Heart, Memorare

-Kathleen Metz

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Fr. Gregory Piatt

Prayers offered: Mass

Four years ago, Fr. Greg made a difficult situation into the Parish we are today. Four years ago, two long-term parishes (60 years +) closed and merged and became a new parish St. John XXIII in Redford. With funds available from the sale of one of the churches, he has transformed the church into a beautiful place of worship. Refinished pews replaced worn chairs. With Fr. Greg's artistic eye, he placed statues and pictures in prominent places so parishioners from the two churches would have a remembrances of their previous parish homes. Although it has not been easy, St. John XXIII is a parish where We Encounter Christ and Become His Disciple.

-Laura Scanlan

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Fr. Gregory Tokarski

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Amalia Hansen

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Fr. H. Thomas Kuehnemund

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Tom's gentle guidance, humility, kindness, and unflappable demeanor are legendary at our parish. He always gives credit to others for the role they play in parish projects. His ability to guide and mentor the staff and parishioners makes me willing to volunteer in areas that I would never have had the confidence to attempt before. I know that if I fail at something or make a mistake, he will always be there with a quick smile, a word of encouragement, and a suggestion for a way to improve next time. He sets a wonderful example of how Jesus wants us to treat our neighbors.

-Diane Muhsam

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Fr. J.J. Mech

Prayers offered: Rosary, St. Therese prayer for priests

-Suzanne Palmer

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Fr. Jacob VanAssche

Prayers offered: Rosary

Although I'd been to confession many times somehow I never felt all the way forgiven. I carried the deep sorrow of my past sins with me. Father Jacob VanAssche was not yet the Pastor of St. Damien of Molokai. By chance, I met him one evening during Lent when multiple priests were hearing Confessions. At the end of a long, tearful confession and inability to feel forgiven, Father Jake in a peaceful, joyful manner gave Christ's absolution of every past sin I'd EVER committed. Yes ALL my sins were forgiven! He gave me my penance: "3 Hail Mary's." I didn't hear "3 Hail Mary's." To my ears, it sounded like "3 failed marriages." I asked him, "How did you know about my 3 failed marriages?" He said he didn't and repeated the penance "3 Hail Mary's and all your sins are forgiven, and yes, the 3 marriages too!" It was the 1st time I felt the peace of accepting God's total forgiveness. Praise God! Thank you Father Jake for this confession that I will always remember.

-Carolyn Stancil

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Fr. Jacob VanAssche & Fr. Andrew Mabee

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary, 2 Rosaries for each priest

They moved in a blessed way all my life!

-Maria Ochoa

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Fr. James Arwady

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Suzanna DeVeny

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Fr. James Arwady

Prayers offered: Litany of the Sacred Heart

Father James's lessons given during his homilies, on prayer and drawing close to God, have greatly helped my prayer life.

-Kimberly Fleury

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Fr. James Bilot

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Barbara Kuspa

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Fr. James Bilot

Prayers offered: Rosary

He inspires me to ask for God's help.

-Phil Dara

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Fr. James Bilot, Fr. Colin Fricke, & Fr. Thomas Slowinski

Prayers offered: Adoration

-Ann McHugh

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Fr. James Bjorum

Prayers offered: Rosary

For baptizing our children and giving us hours of great pastoral care and endless discussions at Ram’s Horn.

-Steven & Monique Chetcuti

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Fr. James Bjorum

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

Thank you Fr. Jim for everything you do for our parish. I would especially like to thank you for your role in all 4 of my children's lives while attending Catholic grade school. Your guidance has carried over into their adult lives, and I know they feel the same gratitude as I do. GOD BLESS

-Sarah Chetcuti

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Fr. James Bjorum

Prayers offered: Lord, please bless Fr. Jim for doing your will in shepherding our parish.

Many years ago, Fr. Jim welcomed me home to the parish after I had stopped going to church. I will never forget the kindness he showed me. I try to be an active member ever since that day. Thank you for restoring my faith.

-Janice Chreston

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Fr. James Bjorum

Prayers offered: Mass

I thank you Fr. Jim for sharing yourself with the community of Our Lady of Hope. You have provided spiritual enrichment and guidance as you have walked with us on our faith journey. I thank you for enriching my spiritual journey of faith. God bless you on this Priesthood Sunday!

-Susan Gudenau

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Fr. James Bjorum

Prayers offered: Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, St. Therese of Lisieux's Prayer for Priests - daily

I have been teaching 7th Grade Catechism for about 5 years (albeit, I missed the last 2 due to COVID) and I have been especially blessed by Father's visits to the class a couple times a year. His scheduling of 2 reconciliations for the class each year, and the Masses that he presides over for all the classes each year. It's such a blessing to have Fr. Jim be right out in front for the students to see how much he loves them and for the teachers to know how much he supports our efforts. We are very blessed to have Fr. Jim as our Pastor -- Thanks be to God!!!

-Rudy Perez

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Fr. James Bjorum

Prayers offered: Mass & Our Father

By having personal reflection with God and understanding what my Faith is about and how meaningful my personal relationship with my Catholic faith means to me.

-Lena Zaviski

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Fr. James Commyn

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Candice Stevens

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Fr. James Grau

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Daily Prayers

-Barbara Middleton

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Fr. James Grau

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Jim has infused our church with a new spirit of discipleship. I have a stronger faith and understanding because of conversations I have had with Fr. Jim and the Wednesday Faith Series he has instituted.

-Christa Perry

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Fr. James Kean & Fr. Steven Mateja

Prayers offered: Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, & Litany of the Sacred Heart

-Jacob Sasak

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Fr. James Kenneally (+deceased)

Prayers offered: Mass

Father Kenneally gave me instruction to convert to Catholicism when I was 17 years old. He was a joy to know and made the experience so natural and inspiring.

-Nancy Iski

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Fr. James Lopez

Prayers offered: Mass

Every day I ask Mary to be with him in his ministry and protect him from harm.

-Mary Lynch

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Fr. James Lowe, CC

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Jim leads his parish by example. Each weekday he leads the morning rosary and adoration. His love of the Eucharist, the Blessed Mother, the Bible is infectious. You can't help but smile when he all but skips up the aisle to say Mass. He loves being a priest, and being a Catholic and it shows.

-Diane Griffith

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Fr. James Mayworm

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Stations of the Cross, Litany of the Sacred Heart, Memorare

-Kathleen Metz

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Fr. James Rafferty

Prayers offered: Rosary

Fr. Jim Rafferty is a wonderful, holy priest. We are blessed to have him at St. Mary’s. He spends hours in the confessional, and is always available to listen.

-Susan Cuzelis

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Fr. James Smalarz

Prayers offered: Mass

-Sue Lang

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Fr. Jeffrey Allan

Prayers offered: Rosary

At Holy Trinity Parish in Port Huron, Father Jeff had the longest lines for Confession, but it was worth the wait. He is gifted with discernment to get to the root of spiritual troubles. It's a gift that is well suited to hospital chaplaincy.

-Kimberly Fleury

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Fr. Jeffrey Day

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-Norhan John

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Fr. John Bettin

Prayers offered: Mass & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Dianne McMillan

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Fr. John Bettin

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-Steve & Leanne Schuster

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Fr. John Carlin

Prayers offered: Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, & Litany of the Sacred Heart

-Jacob Sasak

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Fr. John Dudek

Prayers offered: Mass

-Kathleen Escamilla

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Fr. John Dudek

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Barbara Kuspa

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Fr. John Dudek

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Alfrida Turner

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Fr. John Dumas

Prayers offered: Rosary

Although Fr. Dumas has been at my parish for a short time, his spiritual leadership and guidance is a true gift he brings to Our Lady on the River Parish.

-Mary Shackett

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Fr. John Dumas

Prayers offered: Rosary

God directed me to attend Mass at St. Aloysius four years ago. I was a parishioner at a neighboring parish, and I wasn’t being fulfilled. I was searching for more. Father Dumas provided that and more. Reverent you ask? The English dictionary should record “Father John Dumas” as the definition. His actions and mannerisms are like no other. Homilies and knowledge? I have never learned so much from a priest as I have from Father Dumas. I have never ever reached out to others since listening to Father Dumas to spread the Word. He said something that I will never forget. These were his words: “My job is to get you to Heaven.” WOW!! I had never heard that before from a priest. Father Dumas has since departed St. Aloysius, and I miss him dearly. As he always said, “don’t follow a priest, follow the Lord.” I thank the Lord for directing me to St. Aloysius and having the opportunity to listen and learn from Father Dumas.

-Sharon Smith

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Fr. John Esper

Prayers offered: Rosary

Fr. John truly speaks to my soul. I could listen to him for hours. His sincerity and dedication is extremely evident in our parish. I have never met a priest that has had a more captive audience. I am grateful to have him in my life.

-Linda Collins

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Fr. John Hedges

Prayers offered: Litany of the Sacred Heart

-Laura Gregory

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Fr. John Kiselica

Prayers offered: Rosary

For being a tremendous teacher, blessing our marriage and remaining a part of our lives, even though we are far away.

-Steven & Monique Chetcuti

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Fr. John Kopson

Prayers offered: Rosary

Fr. John is an inspiration for all. His passion and enthusiasm in his faith is truly contagious. By example, he challenges us to grow in our our personal faith and to look for opportunities to plant a seed that may begin a journey to Christ for someone else.

-Connie Stefanski

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Fr. John Sullivan

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

Father John is amazing he's been an amazing priest he's brought people back to the church and is even touched lives of the young one we love him so much

-Theresa Mckenzie

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Fr. John Wynnycky

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Adoration

Thank you Father John for praying the rosary with your parishioners before daily Mass at 7:00 am

-Bonnie Garofalo

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Fr. Joseph Esper

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father's Homily is always uplifting; I enjoy how he includes and involves the school children at different times. He is patient and caring of our newly formed family of parishes.

-Kathleen Gayeski

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Fr. Joseph Esper

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Pamela Mertes

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Fr. Joseph Esper

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

I’ve learned so much from his sermons! He’s made me a better Catholic.

-Sheila Wittbrodt

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Fr. Joseph Gagnon

Prayers offered: Mass

Father Gagnon has been a light to all the parishes in our area. He has dedicated himself to stepping in wherever needed. He answers the call and does it with grace and respect night or day. I am always happy to celebrate Mass with Fr Joe.

-Donna Schweihofer

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Fr. Joseph Gembala

Prayers offered: Mass

Father Joe has always supported the teens of our parish in growing in their faith. He was supportive when I was a youth and is still supportive as I am the high school youth ministry coordinator today.

-Lauren Corbat

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Fr. Joseph Kirkconnell

Prayers offered: Mass, Chaplet for the Sanctification of Priests

-Lily McLaughlin

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Fr. Joseph Mallia

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Stations of the Cross, Litany of the Sacred Heart, Memorare

-Kathleen Metz

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Fr. Joseph Tuskiewicz

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Liturgy of the Hours

Fr. Joe reintroduced me to the Tridentine Mass with all its historical beauty, spirituality, and solemnity. It’s deepened my spiritual life more than I could explain.

-Joanne Colombo

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Fr. Kenneth Chase

Prayers offered: Rosary

Nine years ago, I began the thought of returning to the Catholic Faith after many decades of "running around the barn" at evangelical churches and metaphysical studies. At Sacred Heart Christmas Eve Mass, I was handed a free book by Matthew Kelly, "Rediscover Catholicism," which explained many things I either did not learn in Catholic grade school or never absorbed. Confession was going to be the "make it or break it" point for me to come back or not come back to the Faith. Thank you to Fr. Ken to welcoming me back and advising me to never leave the sacraments again, as people will always disappoint us, but the sacraments never will. Fr. Ken's gentle and kind manner was a great comfort to me during this journey back home. I am growing in my spiritual intelligence by leaps and bounds by programs I was exposed to at the parish, including Word on Fire's Pivotal Players series by Bishop Robert Barron. Having moved last year, I still have warm regard for Fr. Ken and the mentors I know from Sacred Heart Parish in Dearborn.

-Mary Anne Linsell

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Fr. Kenneth Chase

Prayers offered: Litany of the Sacred Heart

-Mary Olesko

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Fr. Kevin Roelant

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

Kevin is my brother, and it has truly been the biggest blessing having a Catholic priest in our family. Not only has it brought our family closer in our faith by all his prayers, mass intentions, etc. that he offers for us and shares with us, but he acts with joy, humility, and intentionality that seems uncommon today.

-Allison Coleman

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Fr. Lawrence Zurawski

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Matt Malenfant

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Fr. Lawrence Zurawski

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Missy Taylor

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Fr. Lee Acervo

Prayers offered: Stations of the Cross

I was able to attend the Traditional Latin Mass for the first time since early childhood because Father Acervo celebrates it. I have no memory of the Latin Mass of my early childhood. I do remember learning the new ways and understanding that it was different, and I didn't question it. I'm not able to go to St. Edward-on-the-Lake very often, but when my mom found out that Father Acervo offers the Latin Mass, she wanted to make a special trip to go to it. I don't understand what the fuss is about as far as restricting it. I wish it were offered at every parish. It is more worshipful and encourages prayerful meditation, as opposed to always having to remember my lines in the New Mass. I attend the New Mass every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation, but at some point during every Mass, I find myself wishing it were the Latin Mass. I'm very grateful to Father Acervo for having taken the time to learn the Latin Mass because it allowed me to see what my parents had told me about it.

-Kimberly Fleury

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Fr. Leo Sabourin

Prayers offered: Mass

Your dedicated service has been a source of comfort, inspiration, and strength of the people of God. With prayers of gratitude and joy for all your faithful work.

-Roberta Meloche

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Fr. Leo Sabourin

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father Leo was my childhood priest. Because of lack of proper facilities I could not attend a Catholic school I I was born with CP it’s almost like being paralyzed . because I couldn’t walk I couldn’t have that education but Father Leo gave me the best Christmas present ever ,he gave me all two sacrament baptism and communion first communion on December 25, 1995 and two years later he gave me the Confirmation. I will always hold a special place in my heart for Father Leo my faith has grown because of Father Leo sometimes he lets me speak at his homily because he thinks what I have to say is good and my faith has continued to grow because of Father Leo I’ve made great strides despite the fact that I’m a late bloomer but that’s the Way I participated and I don’t mind saying that But with Father Leo‘s help I’m getting there and I’m still making great strides in my faith is still growing and I will continue to move on with Father Leo and mind you he turns 90 bells are ringing this summer I will get to see him turn 90 that is another great thrill for me and my family. God bless love from Natasha.

-Natasha Villarreal

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Fr. Libor Marek & Fr. Juraj Nuota

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Alexandria Collins

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Fr. Mario Amore

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

A small memory that meant a lot to me was the Holy Thursday Mass at St. Al's. Someone who was supposed to get their feet washed dropped out at the last minute, and Fr. Mario asked me to fill in. I noticed how Fr. Mario made such intentional eye contact with each person whose feet he washed. It meant so much to see him look at each person, upholding their dignity in one simple gesture. From now on, whenever I am serving or encountering someone, I've been intentional about making eye contact. Many of those I encounter, particularly the homeless community in Detroit, have even looked surprised to see the honor that such a simple gesture makes. I credit that to Fr. Mario and his embodiment of Christ for his parishioners.

-Claire Krakowiak

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Fr. Mario Amore

Prayers offered: Rosary

Fr. Mario clearly has a profound reverence for the Holy Eucharist and makes Adoration available to us regularly. As a result, Eucharistic Adoration has become one of my favorite methods of prayer. Share a lighthearted story or memory with Fr. Mario: Just recently, Fr. Mario gave an exemplary performance in left field during our first Friendly Softball Game. Seeing him chase down a few deep fly balls to cover his slice of territory reminded me of how seriously he takes his commitment to his Parish and the Catholic Church by extension. Sorry for singing poorly on the bus ride home while you were trying to drive us safely back upriver.

-Max Roesler

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Fr. Mark Livingston

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

Fr. Mark is an amazing Fr. He is kind, compassionate and very loved by many people. I've been at his church over 2 years and I've been growing, healing and learning a lot. I've been learning about St Rita, St Ignatius and about many other things . He sings a song at the end of Mass sometimes "Jesus I believe in you" It's beautiful. He understands brokenness like no one else. A very wonderful servant of Our Lord. Our Diocese is blessed to have him as one of our priests.

-Kathy Basil

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Fr. Mark Livingston

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father Mark brings to life and transmits the love for Our Lord Jesus Christ.

-Yasmin Stanton

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Fr. Mark Tibai

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Sandra Caldwell

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Fr. Mark Tibai

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-John Norhan

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Fr. Mark Wendling, SOLT, and Fr. Dominic Macioce

Prayers offered: Mass & Stations of the Cross

Both Fr. Mark and Fr. Dominic have the gift of giving inspirational homilies with personal stories and humorous interjections. They are great. I can't wait to hear them at each Mass. Also, they are both gifted in listening to us during confession and offering soothing consolations. Fr. Dominic has since been transferred to a different parish — I miss him very much. Fr. Mark still comes to St. Hugo's parish, and I am thrilled that he continues to teach me at his Masses. Thank you, Jesus for the blessing of Fr. Mark and Fr. Dominic!

-Beth Holland

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Fr. Matthew Hood

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Barbara Kuspa

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Fr. Michael Nkachukwu

Prayers offered: Ministry in Trinity Family of Northeast Detroit

Fr. Michael is the pastor at Our Lady Queen of Heaven-Good Shepherd parish. Fr. Michael impacted my life when he presented his dissertation on capital punishment to St. Anthony parish in Detroit several years ago. His presentation changed my stance on this issue which now aligns fully with the Catholic Church teachings. Thanks Fr. Michael for sharing this important message with me (and others) several years ago and for doing whatever you can to ensure the Catholic Church presence in Northeast Detroit continues.

-Richard Larkins

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Fr. Michael Savickas

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Ellen Nikolai

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet & Litany of the Sacred Heart

-Jan Biscarner

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Anna Bissett

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

My mom was the most devout Catholic I had known up until the time she passed away when I was 14 years old. I struggled with faith and being a Catholic after we lost her. I struggled with substance use also after she passed and finally found recovery in 2007. I struggled to return to the Church until my wife and I had children, in which time I knew we had to return. Father Michael is partly responsible for bringing me back to the Church whether he knows it or not. Attending Mass with him is just different, and I can’t quite explain the connection I feel to Christ. I love all Masses, but I especially love Mass with Father Michael. He is sincere, sometimes stern (which I love) and truly engaged on helping his parishioners meet our Lord and Savior every single Mass. I feel, as I know many others do also, that we are truly blessed to have him as our Priest. I look forward to my children learning the Faith through Mass with Father Michael and I am truly grateful that he is our Priest.

-Andrew Brown

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Other prayers

Father Michael Zuelch has helped me and my family with painful issues, which have originated from within the Catholic Church. He has addressed these issues with clarity and sincerity. We appreciate Fr. Michael for his true caring for other friends who have left the Catholic Church. he takes the time and guides them back to the Faith with true direction. His example of reverence and devotion while celebrating Mass continues to lead us to God during these confusing and difficult times. He gives us hope and confidence by his example on how to live out our daily lives and keep the Faith. We are very blessed to have him as our pastor here at St. Mary parish.

-Jacqueline Callewaert

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father Michael’s deep piety has inspired me to deepen mine. Thank you Father Michael.

-Alice Conrad

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Michael guides our parish by his reverence and holiness, leading all of us toward a closer relationship with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We are grateful to have him as our pastor.

-Agnes and Jim Donahue

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Rosary, Chaplet of Divine Love for Priests

Fr. Michael truly is a Holy man. I am in awe watching him draw many altar servers closer to our Lord and prayerfully a priestly vocation. His zeal, strength and desire to lead all souls to Heaven radiates through him, especially during Mass. His no nonsense homilies are thought provoking and I'm sure sometimes difficult for him to say. When I was diagnosed with cancer, I asked Fr. Michael for a blessing. Fr. Michael didn't give me a quick blessing after Mass. He took the time to anoint me. When Father laid his hands on my head, my body trembled and a peace came over me. I knew in my heart that I was going to be fine. Fr. Michael truly is a humble disciple of God. Thank you God for the gift of Fr. Michael. Happy Priesthood Sunday Father. See you at Mass.

-Paul Kuzera

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Father Michael has been the most influential spiritual leader in my life. Because of him, my faith has grown exponentially. He is a true gift to the Catholic Faith. His devotion and loyalty is awe-inspiring. He puts Christ's Church first and foremost always! A true unsung hero.

-Cris Nesbitt

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father is an excellent teacher, who has increased our appreciation and depth of the knowledge of our Faith. We are truly blessed to have him.

-Frank and Cissy Rusch

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Rosary, Prayers for all our good, holy priests

Attending Mass at St. Mary's is truly a holy experience, beginning with the opening procession, accompanied by the organ, bells, candles, and often times incense. The altar servers, led by the Crucifix, process like proud soldiers, each one disciplined, focused, dignified, and dedicated to their mission of serving at Christ's Altar. Father Michael always moves slowly and reverently as he prays the Mass, and he performs the Consecration of the Eucharist with the utmost reverence. And we, the people, humbly receive the Body of Christ on our knees. Thank you, Father Michael, for setting the example and high standards of worshiping God in a beautifully offered Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

-William Tucker

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Memorare

I am forever grateful that God send Father Michael to our Parish because he touched our lives in so many different remarkable ways:

  • Fr. Michael confirmed my daughter Shannon at St. Mary’s in 2016.
  • He convalidated Gery and I’s wedding vows on September 8, 2017.
  • He did the Anointing of the Sick for my husband Gery.
  • He did the Last Rites for my husband at the hospice. Gery suffered from ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease.
  • He did the Funeral Mass for my Gery on March 23, 2020.

Fr. Michael not only conducted all these sacraments but also he is such a pious, devoted, and reverent priest. My family encountered a lot of challenges and difficulties during the past several years. Every time we talked to Fr. Michael, he is there for us, listening intently and praying unceasingly. I will never forget, when I confided to him, he said in a very tranquil voice... "Jennifer I will say a special prayer for you and your family!" Fr. Michael transformed my family, especially me, and I am so thankful for his ministry; he made a huge impact on our life's faith journey.

-Jennifer Ureel

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Fr. Michael Zuelch

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

My faith has grown because of Fr. Michael. He prays the Mass with such great reverence and tradition that I am drawn to daily Mass too. He trains the altar boys to move with reverence and precision. He is helping to raise faithful men to be holy leaders of our future. I am grateful for the opportunity to be led to my hope of heaven by such a holy man.

-Tricia Wimmer

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Fr. Naveen D'Souza, SAC

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Stations of the Cross

His impact on my life has been quiet but steady, no one great moment. As our Parish Administrator, he faced many challenges as a young priest. I saw him accept these difficulties without complaint and work through them, something I greatly admired and would like to imitate.

-Suzanne Howden

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Fr. Naveen D'Souza, SAC

Prayers offered: Mass, Chaplet for the Sanctification of Priests

-Lily McLaughlin

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Fr. Naveen D'Souza, SAC, and Fr. Anthony Fernandes, SAC

Prayers offered: Mass, Chaplet for the Sanctification of Priests

-Lily McLaughlin

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Fr. Naveen D'Souza, SAC, and Fr. Anthony Fernandes, SAC

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, & Stations of the Cross

Both Fr. Naveen and Fr. Anthony have brought so much love to St. Ignatius through all they do.

-Tonja Wight

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Fr. Nicholas Zukowski

Prayers offered: Rosary

For showing us the beauty of friendship, caring for our spiritual growth and reminding us to always share a good laugh.

-Steven & Monique Chetcuti

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Fr. Noel Cornelio

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Holly Shanefelt

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Fr. Noel Cornelio

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Christine Sweers

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Fr. Norman P. Thomas

Prayers offered: Litany of the Sacred Heart

Fr. Norman P. Thomas inspired me to return to Catholicism in 2015, after a 20 year absence!

-Musette Bonds

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Fr. Norman P. Thomas

Prayers offered: Mass & Other Prayers: For his continued health and strength. Pray for his grace and mercy.

-Robin Cole

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Fr. Pathrose Panuvel

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Carolyn Utter

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Fr. Patrick Gonyeau

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet & Other Prayers: Daily prayers that St. Michael, all the saints and angels, Jesus, and Our Blessed Mother protect him.

The first time I met him, I was filled with the joy and love of the Holy Spirit to the point of tears. I had never experienced such a profound feeling. He is a blessing to all who know him. His daily "Renewal Of the Mind" are words to live by.

-Denise Genereaux

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Fr. Patrick Gonyeau

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

Father Patrick has become a very important part of my life and my family's life as well. He is very inspiring and interesting in how he explains the bible, the sacraments, the mass.He has helped me tremendously o, my spiritual journey and I love and appreciate him very much. God bless you and your Ministry Father Patrick. Father Patrick is very special and important in me and my family's life. Not only has he been a beacon sharing his love of Jehovah, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost but also his teachings have helped me tremendously. Father Patrick also helped my son Michael who was having serious problems and almost died. He went to pray for my son; he survived. We are forever grateful to Father Patrick; we love him very much.

-Patricia Lanton

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Fr. Paul Ballien

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Anne Marie Milner

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Fr. Paul Ballien

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet, Hail Mary

Thank you Fr. Paul for saying "yes" to God when He called you to become a priest. We are thankful for all you do for our parish. May God bless you always.

-David Sanabria

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Fr. Paul Graney

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

Father Paul is an extremely gifted and knowledgeable priest. As the associate pastor at St. Lawrence, he is very busy assisting with the needs of the parish. He can often be found in the classrooms of the parish school. He must spend an inordinate amount of time preparing for his homilies as they are top notch from week to week. Some of the Scripture readings are more well known and can be dismissed as "I've heard that story before." This description will never relate to any of Fr. Paul's presentations. He always find new material which he presents in a very easy to understand manner. The details are chock full of spiritual points to meditate and reflect upon. I am so impressed each week to learn so many new bits of knowledge that are expanding my Faith and spiritual knowledge. I definitely don't lack for meditation opportunities when Fr. Paul is preaching. His method of delivery is direct and readily understandable. Most likely, Fr. Paul will be asked to move on to other assignments within the Archdiocese sooner than we would like. We are very blessed to have had his devoted service to St. Lawrence. It is not hard to foresee that Fr. Paul Graney will go far in the service of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

-Mike Butkiewicz

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Fr. Paul Snyder

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Alexandria Collins

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Fr. Paulo Dias

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Anne Marie Milner

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Fr. Philip Ching

Prayers offered: Rosary

During the summer of 2021, Father Phil baptized me with the Holy Spirit. I asked that my heart be healed physically and emotionally. Father Phil told me that the doctors could heal my heart physically, so he prayed over me to heal my heart emotionally. The minute he touched me tears started flowing and years of hurt were released from my heart. Being in the presence of the Holy Spirit is a powerful experience that I hope everyone gets to discover.

-Sharon Shinska

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Fr. Placido Pereira

Prayers offered: Mass

Father Placido's homilies are quite profound in my opinion. I love that I have observed him to be a man of few words but what he does say counts. He does not waste his breath unnecessarily. And that makes me want to listen even more when he speaks.

-Benedict Santiago

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Fr. Randall Phillips

Prayers offered: A Prayer of Thanksgiving

As a person who has been through some difficult times, he has helped me get through the hump and down the road. Sometimes I feel my only hope is through him and God.

-Darlene Preston

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Fr. Richard Bartoszek

Prayers offered: Rosary

Fr. Rich helps out at our weekend Masses and brings with him humor, passion, and a true love of his Faith which he shares with all of us. I look forward to having Fr. Rich for Mass as his sermons are always so thought provoking and he usually gives us an assignment for the week ahead. I hope that he realizes how much he is appreciated and loved at our parish.

-Debbie Bigham

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Fr. Richard Perfetto

Prayers offered: Mass

-Melissa Sullivan

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Fr. Robert Bauer

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, & Stations of the Cross

Through his homilies, Fr. Bob helps me grow weekly in my Catholic Faith. He takes everyday life examples and applies them to the Sunday readings. Fr. Bob is a kind, caring, and humble man who is a wonderful example of Christ here on earth. It is an honor to have him as our pastor.

-Catherine Hammond

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Fr. Robert Johnson, SVD

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father Bob teaches with so much heart and enthusiasm in his love of the Lord and of our Catholic Faith. He makes the Gospel so relevant to our lives.

-Matthew McClellan

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Fr. Robert Johnson, SVD

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Stations of the Cross, Litany of the Sacred Heart, Memorare

-Kathleen Metz

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Fr. Robert LaCroix

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Bob is a wonderful priest. I have known him for many years. He has helped me so much.

-Therese Oziemski

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Fr. Robert McCabe

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Barbara Kuspa

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Fr. Robert McCabe

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Alfrida Turner

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Fr. Robert McCabe, Fr. David Pellican, & Fr. John Dudek

Prayers offered: Mass

Fr. Bob McCabe, Fr. David Pellican and Fr. John Dudek are a joyful band of brothers, bringing us closer to Jesus every day! Each day they bring peace, joy and comfort to all who encounter them. They are such a blessing to our Divine Child Parish Family!!

-Marilyn O'Brien

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Fr. Robert McCabe, Fr. David Pellican, & Fr. John Dudek

Prayers offered: Mass

-Kelly Persichetti

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Fr. Robert McCabe, Fr. John Dudek, & Fr. David Pellican

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Sharon Stanley

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Fr. Robert Voiland

Prayers offered: Rosary, Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament

Fr. Bob, he is so good, so kind, and so loving. He is holy priest; you just want to be near for he is a balm to the soul. He is so willing to help in every situation and always ready to listen. He is so gentle, and you can feel the love of Christ pouring from him. He is a wonderful confessor. We are so incredibly blessed to have him here at Our Lady of the Lakes. He is a true gift. Thank you Fr. Bob for being a priest!

-Jenna Konarzewski

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Fr. Roman Pasieczny

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

Father Roman is a wonderful pastor. He always makes himself available for the parish. He often visits the homebound people. He is very dedicated to the parishioners, staff, school personnel, and, especially, the children. He is not the first one out of the church proper after Mass as he always waves to the people and chats with them as he is heading out. We are very fortunate to have Father Roman at the helm at St. Lawrence.

-Mike Butkiewicz

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Fr. Ronald Richards

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Leeann Whalen

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Fr. Salvatore Palazzolo

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

Father Sal was a great comfort when my brother died soon after Father was assigned to Holy Trinity Parish in Port Huron. It was extremely hard on our mother. She still talks about how Father Sal helped her through that time. There were many deaths in the parish during his time there. Daily Mass attendees talk of the times he had been at the hospital all night, keeping vigil with the families who waited for news of their loved ones. It meant a lot to us that he gave of himself to comfort us in our time of grief.

-Kimberly Fleury

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Fr. Scott Thibodeau

Prayers offered: Rosary, Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament

Fr. Scott, I am so grateful for you my dear Father. You are "like a voice crying out in the desert." That was my first impression of you. You brought back the crucifix, the bells, and you placed the Tabernacle front and center. The list goes on. You aren't afraid to speak the truth. I am so incredibly grateful for you. Your faith and strength during the height of COVID helped keep us all steady and calmed our fears. What you did for us during COVID and the lengths you went through to still reach us, I am crying tears of gratitude and love just trying to write this. You are a good shepherd and have a very keen eye for noticing your most fragile little sheep and treating them with such tenderness and love. You are a good Father, teaching, admonishing, forgiving, loving, and looking after our souls with great care. The parish is flourishing under your guidance; the people are visibly growing in holiness and the school is growing in numbers. It's all a testament to you. Thank you for being a priest!

-Jenna Konarzewski

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Fr. Scott Thibodeau

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Mary Mumper

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Fr. Sean Bonner

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Cindy Criteser

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Fr. Sean Bonner

Prayers offered: For Fr. Sean Bonner's personal intentions.

He's a true shepherd leading his flock. We are blessed to have him with us.

-Karen Griffin

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Fr. Sean Bonner

Prayers offered: Rosary & Litany of the Sacred Heart

Fr. Sean has the best homilies. I get new revelations of the scriptures listening to him.

-Veronica Waugh

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Fr. Socorro Fernandes, SAC

Prayers offered: Rosary & Other Prayers: For continued strength & energy in being there for all parishioners between St. Val's & Our Lady of Loretto.

My story about Fr. Socorro has to do with a reconciliation visit. My name is Annette & I was raised in St. Valentine parish along with my 5 brothers & sisters...my parents taught us about & brought us into our faith in the church & we also learned through attending St. Valentine school when the nuns were our teachers... (Yes, way back in the 60's & early 70's). After I reached young adulthood I strayed away from the church & my faith ... my father had very unexpectedly died when I was just 14 and I couldn't understand why God had let that happen ... and, nobody was able to explain that to me. Anyway, many years passed and I was living a life that I was not proud of and it kept me alienated from my family. I became addicted to drugs & alcohol and made some very bad decisions throughout those times. I know that I've been talking a lot about me so far & you're probably wondering when I'll get to Father Socorro....? I'm getting there, I promise! So, years went on and my life was a shambles, my husband had died from his drug use at home one night. ... something changed that night. I eventually decided to try and make changes, get clean & become a better version of myself & reunite with my family. I began attending Mass again (I would go with my Mom) and at that time the sermons seemed to be directly related to what I was going through.. Anyway, that was back in 1997 and my life has changed in so many ways... I've done lots of work to get rid of past mistakes & behaviors....I've talked with a great many people who have supported and helped me along the way....and I relearned about giving back & being if service to others. I regained a beautiful relationship with my Mom (for 19) years until she passed in 2016...my siblings & I sent her off through St. Vals where she had taught us all about our Catholic faith. Many changes happened and I shared a lot of my bad choices with some trusted friends ... but still, there was something that seemed unfinished. Something that I had done and shared about, but still incomplete. I knew in my heart why this was and it was because I needed absolution. In my younger years while living this life of addiction, I had become pregnant & had 2 abortions. The worst choices I've ever made ... it was out of fear and one time my Mom had found out and she was devastated, but only wanted to take care of me. I know that my Mom's heart was so broken, but she continued to Love me and prayed for me! I needed to confess this to a priest and I was scared to death to do so. Father Socorro was that priest. I knew that things had changed as far as a choice to directly face the priest in the confessional or sit on the other side of the partition ... but, I needed to be directly in the face of the priest. I was shaking and so nervous to say this out loud in the church ... Father Socorro did not hesitate ... he immediately reminded me that God has long since forgiven me and I never need to confess this sin again. This, that I know is a mortal sin, Father said I am forgiven. I knew I needed to do this in the church where I learned about reconciliation, and the fact that Father Socorro was my priest for this one, let's me know that God was certainly present in that room ... coming through the comforting words of Father. I was given what I thought to be a small penance, but have continued penance in service to others. Father Socorro is such a wonderful messenger both at St. Valentine & Our Lady of Loretto. His homilies are wonderful and speak directly to me. I Love our parish & Father Socorro is a great beam of light coming through to remind us all of God's true Love for each & every one of us. Thank you to Father Socorro for your continued service to our Parish and surrounding community of Redford.

-Annette Corradi

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Fr. Socorro Fernandes

Prayers offered: Rosary

My wife and I have been attending St. Valentine Church for a number of years. Father Socorro has been our pastor and we are extremely fortunate to have such a personable and reachable leader of the Catholic Church. We live in Redford and a while back we contemplated moving to a condo that would be more conducive for our older age routines. When my wife learned that we may have to move parishes, she would not have any of that so we decided to remain at our present residence and continue to be part of St. Valentine's parishioners. We love Father Socorro. We pray for him every day and we hope that he will remain our pastor for many, many years to come. We also pray that many young men will find it in their hearts to join the priesthood as the number of priests continue to diminish. We pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.

-Antonio Silva

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Fr. Stan Tokarski

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Stan is so welcoming to everyone. There is no stranger to Fr. Stan… to us he embraces his calling to the priesthood with such integrity, loyalty and devotion to our Lord but also to his parish. We know we are the luckiest people in the world to have him as our pastor, we love him unconditionally as he does us! Thank you, Fr. Stan for your service to us….

-Patty and Ken LaCross

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Fr. Stanley Obloj

Prayers offered: Rosary

Fr. Stanley is a very caring person. During my husband's death he was there for me. His homilies give me a peace of mind. May God bless him with good health so that he may continue his priestly work.

-Christine Gura-Selasky

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Fr. Stanley Ulman

Prayers offered: Mass

Father Stan's graciousness and smiling spirit attracted us initially and still to this day. He is the embodiment of his greeting/prayer at the end of every bulletin column of his: "peace and joy." We love you Father Stan.

-Denis & Jill Naeger

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Fr. Stephen Pullis

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet

I consider Fr. Steve to be an associate pastor of St. John Vianney. He inflames my soul with his homilies. He has been a great friend to me as well through my many trials.

-Christa Perry

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Fr. Steven Mateja

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Stations of the Cross, Litany of the Sacred Heart, Prayer to St. Joseph

March 23, 2021….my mother, Anna, 107 years old…no awareness, no talking. or eating for three days…in dying process… Asked Father Steve to keep her in prayers…he replied…”let’s go see her now.” Prayed Rosary and Divine Mercy Chaplet … Fr Steve leaned over my mom and said, “Anna, Anna, do you love Jesus?” My Mom turned her head and whispered “yes”… Two days later, on March 25, feast of the Annunciation … when Mary said “yes” to be mother of Jesus ... while I was praying to St. Joseph, my mom went home to Jesus. Father Steve Mateja is a most humble, genuine, selfless giving, prayerful praise be Jesus priest. Thank you Father Steve.

-Anne Bartold

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Fr. Steven Mateja

Prayers offered: Rosary

At the age of 8, Steve, Fr. Steve, our Son, informed us that he wanted to be a “Sports' Announcer” or a “Catholic Priest!” We in turn responded, “We will support you wherever God wants you.” As a young infant, Fr. Steve's grandmother, Rosie Mateja, would pray the Rosary as she rocked him on her lap, or she would sing to him Polish Christian songs or Marian songs. God had a plan, and we were definitely part of his plan for our son's deep Catholic faith and religious formation. His father began instructing and teaching him about the beauty of the Mass and what the priest was doing and why. He served as an altar boy, and his reverence on the altar was an example to all parishioners to see. We often spoke of his aunt who was a Dominican nun and his great cousin who was a priest. Our family prayed together, and we went to Mass together every Sunday as a family. Fr. Steve is from a strong lineage of faithful Polish Catholics. God chose Fr. Steve. His family, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, religious ed teachers, and priests all had important roles in his Catholic Faith and formation. Father Steve said yes when he was called! He said, “Here I am Lord: yes, I want to serve you!!"

-David & Linda Mateja

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Fr. Steven Wertanen

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Fr. Steve helped me believe that God is always with us even when we may feel otherwise. He made me realize all the coincidences that happen is God’s Divine Intervention. If we look for Him with our hearts, we will find Him in all our days. We are blessed he answered God’s call.

-Marilyn Veryser

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Fr. Thomas Kramer

Prayers offered: I will include Fr. Kramer in my daily prayers for a year.

-Brian Sullivan

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Fr. Thomas Kramer

Prayers offered: Mass

-Melissa Sullivan

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Fr. Timothy Birney

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet & daily prayers for God's blessing, help, and protection for Fr. Tim

Fr. Tim's dedication to the priesthood and to mentoring and encouraging seminarians is remarkable and inspiring. He is steadfast in proclaiming both the Gospel and the teachings of the Catholic Church. His friendliness makes him very approachable, and his sense of humor is enjoyable. Fr. Tim is hardworking as our pastor and a real blessing to us all. Thanks, Fr. Tim for all you do for us at Cabrini, and most recently for air conditioning the Church!

-Mary Brua

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Fr. Timothy Birney

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Prayer & light a candle to Mother Cabrini

Fr. Tim made time to visit my mother at the hospital & in the nursing home when she was sick. So very comforting for her & me. He is always smiling & takes time to listen or chat for a bit. Wonderful sense of humor too. He is a spiritual gift & blessing to St. Francis Cabrini parish. Even though Fr. Tim has “a lot on his plate,” he always has a welcoming smile & friendly word. So appreciated his concerns and visiting my mother in the hospital & nursing home. It meant so much to her & me. God bless him.

-Pat Darin

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Fr. Timothy Birney

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father Tim answers every question in detail with love and humor. He welcomed my husband and I into the parish with warm thoughts and open arms. Fr Tim also has a large congregation in which he is hands on all around, either taking care of business himself or delegating.

-S Kol

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Fr. Timothy Birney

Prayers offered: Mass

Fr. Tim has impacted my entire family in so many ways from welcoming me back to confession after many years and making it a positive experience, being a strong presence to my 2 sons, and his never ending support and guidance for us. Fr. Tim is always there for the kids of our schools. Supporting them at many athletic events, retreats and of course Mass. We pray that God continues to Bless him in many ways. We are ALL IN at Cabrini for everything Fr. Tim does for others.

-Barb Ostrowski

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Fr. Timothy Birney

Prayers offered: Rosary & Other Prayers: Every week when the Cabrini Men meet for our Rosary, we include him in our intentions.

There are many stories I could tell about Fr. Tim, but this is the best. After the Year of Prayer for Priestly Vocations was launched on June 4, Fr. Tim called for 24 hours of prayer and adoration to be held on Aug 4 and 5th, the Feast of St. John Vianney. He put our transitional deacon in charge of it. Dcn. Jeremy came to our Cabrini Men's Group, led by our permanent deacon, to ask us to cover the hours of midnight to 6 a.m.. Dcn. Fred put the challenge to us to provide program and coverage. Dcn. Jeremy appealed to our Knights of Columbus for help. Starting at midnight, we had periods of meditation with music, an Office of Readings, two Lectio Divina, a Scriptural Rosary, and three Litanies. Each hour had at least 10 people in attendance. This was a profound spiritual experience for all who participated. It demonstrated how Fr. Birney leads. He quickly identifies problems, offers solutions, and moves to implement. He swiftly delegates using his deacons and lay leadership. He uses community resources to implement innovative spiritual programs. On five weeks notice, he was able to put together a 24 hour program involving 6 priests, 2 deacons, and a hundred laity. I was proud to be a small part of it.

-Ronald Pelley

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Fr. Tom Belczak

Prayers offered: Rosary

Father Tom has always modeled what it's like to be a joyful Disciple of Christ. He has also lead our parish in the importance of sharing our time and talents with others, especially the less fortunate.

-Joanne Moening

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Fr. Tomasz Wilisowski, CSMA

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Stations of the Cross, Litany of the Sacred Heart, Memorare

-Kathleen Metz

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Fr. Tomy Kattikanayil

Prayers offered: Mass

Father Tomy's writings in our Church Bulletin and his homilies are deep and thought provoking in my opinion. I truly believe The Holy Spirit is speaking through him.

-Benedict Santiago

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Fr. Tyrone Robinson

Prayers offered: Prayer for good health and for continued ministry in the City of Detroit

Fr. Tyrone is the Associate Pastor at Our Lady Queen of Heaven-Good Shepherd parish in Detroit. I appreciate how Fr. Tyrone always brings a homily message that ties the readings and Gospel into what is going on today. This makes the message more meaningful to me and allows for me to leave the Mass with thought-provoking things to meditate on. Fr. Tyrone is a one-of-a-kind priest who strives to speak and educate regarding social justice issues that are very much needed in the church today.

-Richard Larkins

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Fr. Wayne Ureel

Prayers offered: Divine Mercy Chaplet, Hour in Adoration Chapel

-Diane Byrnes

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Fr. Wayne Ureel

Prayers offered: Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament

Fr. Wayne was so good as to come out to our house to bless it and to support us when we were experiencing some spiritually scary things. Thank you Fr. Wayne.

-Jenna Konarzewski

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Msgr. William Tindall

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Judith Folk

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Msgr. Daniel Trapp

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

Since coming into the Catholic Church in 2016, Father Dan has been right there, to offer guidance, support, and believe in me to flourish in whatever God leads me too!!!!

-Linda Linseman

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Msgr. Daniel Trapp

Prayers offered: Mass, Rosary, & Divine Mercy Chaplet

Msgr. Trapp’s humble ministry has been very inspiring and reflective of Jesus' love and care. When the pandemic started, I was overwhelmed with compassion when I witnessed a Pastor so concerned about his flock and at least received phone calls from church volunteers to make sure we were taken care of. In addition, his Confessions and homilies are always filled with love and wisdom. I thank God for Monsignor Trapp! Congratulations and thanks Monsignor Trapp! God has smiled on you!!! Gracias y bendiciones!

-Doris Perez

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Msgr. Daniel Trapp

Prayers offered: Rosary

His homilies have increased my Christian living, that is, after the homilies, I have to activate the words of Christ. I try to model after Christ in my daily living. His homilies help me to reexamine my actions and how to rectify them through Christ Jesus. I thank God for him and pray that he stays strong in ministering to us.

-Joyce Shelton

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Msgr. Daniel Trapp

Prayers offered: Rosary, Novena to Infant of Prague

He's a great leader. He'd just met me shortly before my mother had to be hospitalized; she had Alzheimer's. My mother and sister were already members of the parish; I was looking for a church home. While I was sitting with her, he came in bringing her Communion. My mother said something, I replied, and he said, "you understand what she said?" I replied, "I've no idea what she said; I'm replying to the tone. It sounded like something I could agree to." He laughed. A couple of days later on Holy Thursday, he asked me if I'd lead a decade of the Rosary on Good Friday. I asked which one, and he gave the number. I told him the name. He looked at me and said, "a cloak Catholic." I replied, "I'm not cloaked at all." We both laughed. He's been very supportive of family over these years during various crisis times. I'm thankful to God for this man's life in service to Him.

-Artensia Wynn

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Msgr. G. Michael Bugarin

Prayers offered: Rosary

Msgr. Mike has been an inspiration and true leader in our Faith as he guides us in our parish community. Msgr. Mike is always there when you need him and happily guides us on our journey.

-Debbie Bigham

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Msgr. Gary Smetanka

Prayers offered: Rosary

Msgr. Smetanka is a gift. I grew up Catholic and attended Sunday Mass and Faith Formation classes, but I never really felt a part of the Church family until I met Msgr. Smetanka. Msgr. Smetanka is kind, knowledgeable, humble, and has a wonderful sense of humor. I am so blessed that I get to work with Msgr. Smetanka, and I thank God for bringing him into my life.

-Meredith Nesom

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Msgr. Gerald McEnhill

Prayers offered: Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet

-Leeann Whalen

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Msgr. James Moloney

Prayers offered: Rosary

Richard and I have many memories of spending time with Monsignor that we’ll cherish forever.

-Richard and Kathleen Bahlow

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Msgr. James Moloney

Prayers offered: Rosary & Our daily prayers

Msgr. Moloney is dedicated to the children of the parish and the school. His leadership of the parish and school is a prime example of his faith and dedication to his calling.

-Kenneth & Diane Brady

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Msgr. James Moloney

Prayers offered: God bless Monsignor Moloney.

-Carmen and Robert Edmondson

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Msgr. James Moloney

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Jennifer Griwicki

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Msgr. James Moloney

Prayers offered: Rosary

I met Msgr. Moloney in November 1980 when I called the rectory to inquire about joining St. Anselm. I was shocked that Monsignor answered the phone; I thought I would be talking to the secretary. He said we could join, and he would like to see us every Sunday, not just Holy Days. Monsignor has a way of encouraging not pressuring his parishioners. Msgr. Moloney has always been a "touch stone" to me; he is always available for counsel, in good times and bad. In our darkest days after our oldest child died during the Christmas holiday, Monsignor didn't hesitate to provide a funeral Mass and be there for our family. I will always be grateful for his selflessness. Monsignor is a humble man, full of the love of Jesus and many stories. His Irish eyes are always smiling. Monsignor's Blessing at the end of his Masses is legendary and something I long to hear every week. I feel truly Blessed to have Msgr. James Moloney in my life.

-Nancy Hawkinson

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Msgr. James Moloney

Prayers offered: Mass

Monsignor is my boss, and he is the best pastor I have ever worked for. He is truly a shepherd for his parishioners, his staff, his families, and their students. He has always been very involved. You can find him saying Mass for our students or multiple Masses on the weekend. He is always around the school and whenever we ask him for something for our school, he replies with "whatever the kids need." At 92 years old, he is still such a light for our parish and our school. We are so blessed to call Monsignor our pastor.

-Angela Kraetke

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Msgr. James Moloney

Prayers offered: Mass, Prayer of Thanksgiving

At at early age, I looked up to Fr. Jim. His passion and joy for spreading the good news has always been contagious. I remember him coming home with stories of his adventures and encounters around the world with communities and people. He is brave, kind, honest, and loving. I am so grateful for him; so much of who I am I attribute to his example.

-Angela Moloney

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Msgr. James Moloney

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

I moved to a new neighborhood 20 years ago. I continued going to Sunday Mass at my old parish but went to daily mass at St. Anselm. One morning, someone asked me what parish I was from. I answered, and from behind me a voice said, "But where do you want to be buried from?" It was Monsignor speaking.

-Frances and Leonard Nagi

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Msgr. John Budde

Prayers offered: Rosary, Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament

Fr. John was the Pastor of what was the Divine Mercy Parish in Davisburg. He was a true spiritual father to us, and I believe the whole family grew in their love for the Lord. We all loved him; the children loved him. He would come to the family gatherings, fitting right in. There are many things I would like to thank him for but especially I want to thank him for coming to our house when Mom was sick. He offered Holy Mass and annointed her, and it made a huge impact on all the children. He also came back for her Last Rites. She died right before Christmas and we needed a Christian burial, and even though he was no longer our Pastor, he came out to the cemetery on Christmas Eve so she could be buried (it would not keep as it was a "green" burial). He also celebrated her memorial Mass. He knew us; it is a beautiful thing to have your priest truly know you. He knew my whole family — my siblings, their children, names, and interests — he cared for us all, as we were his children. I am forever grateful for you Fr. John!

-Jenna Konarzewski

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Msgr. Timothy Hogan

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-John Norhan

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Msgr. Todd Lajiness

Prayers offered: Other prayers

-Mimi & Kevin Sullivan

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Msgr. William Tindall

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Judith Folk

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Msgr. William Tindall

Prayers offered: Rosary

Msgr. Bill's steady leadership through the pandemic was inspirational. His homilies, delivered from our tiny chapel area via video, sparked a hunger for faith in me at a time when we could not receive Communion. I am grateful for all he did to support the parish and school community and keep us whole through a very scary and trying time. God Bless you, Monsignor!

-Louise Hopping

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Msgr. William Tindall

Prayers offered: Rosary

Monsignor Bill has been a great shepherd for our parish and school and has worked to ensure we are a vibrant, faith filled community. The Men's Spirituality Group, which he had established early in his time at St. Michael's has been of great help in my spiritual growth. I am inspired by the wonderful men who have been part of the group over the years. My wife appreciates the positive effect it has had on me from being a part of this group. Thank you, Monsignor Bill for all your dedication and hard work on behalf of all of us at St. Michael!

-Daniel LaViolette

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Msgr. William Tindall

Prayers offered: Rosary

-Carolyn Utter

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Msgr. William Tindall

Prayers offered: Mass & Rosary

-Stephen Waligora



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