SEASON OF GOOD CHEER 

Posted December 20, 2019 at 1:51 am

 

Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton Rouge distributed bikes and bags filled with gifts to more than 400 families for its 2019 Community Comes Together for Christmas Program. Families were sponsored by area church and community organizations. Photo by Bonny Van | The Catholic Commentator

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    RHS alumni pitch in to help St. Gerard

    By Bonny Van

    The Catholic Commentator  

    A group of Redemptorist High School alumni, who continue to remain loyal to their school, have rallied to express support for their alma mater’s elementary school, Redemptorist St. Gerard School in Baton Rouge.  

    The grounds of Redemptorist St. Gerard School in Baton Rouge were spruced up during a two-day cleanup effort just before school started Aug. 7. A new sign, donated by

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    SECULAR FRANCISCAN PROFESSION

    Father Charlie Landry, pastor of St. Gabriel Church in St. Gabriel, questions Debbie Shelley and Jimmie Pappa on their intent to embrace the Gospel way of life by following the words and example of St. Francis of Assisi as they made their profession to the Secular Franciscan Order at the Ollie Steele Manor chapel in Baton Rouge on Sunday, June 23. Pappa and Shelley were joined by family, friends and members of the local St. Joseph’s Fraternity. Photo by Richard Meek

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    Patriotic essay winners

    By Bonny Van

    The Catholic Commentator 

    “The first place winner of the Patriotic Essay for the diocese (of Baton Rouge) and the winner of $300 in prize money – Landry Mayeaux!” announced David Goldsmith, of the Bishop Stanley J. Ott Assembly of the Knights of Columbus, following the school Mass at St. Jude the Apostle in Baton Rouge on Feb. 20.  

     

    St. Jude School had five

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    Society of St. Vincent de Paul shutters Government St. store

    By Richard Meek

    The Catholic Commentator 

    A Society of St. Vincent de Paul’s retail outlet in Baton Rouge closed its doors in January after the property was sold to a new owner, according to executive director Michael Acaldo.

    The Society of St. Vincent de Paul closed the doors on its Government Street retail store location in Baton Rouge in January. The closure came as a

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    COMMISSION ON RACIAL HARMONY

    Bishop Michael G. Duca, pictured far right, listens to discussions at a meeting of the Diocesan Commission on Racial Harmony. Also attending the meeting, pictured clockwise from the bishop, were Father Rick Andrus, pastor of St. Paul the Apostle Church in Baton Rouge; Father Tom Clark, co-chair of the commission and pastor of Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church in Baton Rouge; Fr. Josh Johnson, co-chair of the commission and pastor of Holy Rosary Church in St. Amant; Deacon Alfred Adams of St. Joseph

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    MEMORIAL OAK

    On Jan. 31, in conjunction with Baton Rouge Green’s Arbor Day, St. Jean Vianney Church in Baton Rouge hosted the planting of a memorial oak tree in honor of John Melancon, who was actively involved in the parish and community. Deacon Brent Duplessis led a blessing ceremony, which was attended by Melancon’s family, friends and students of St. Jean Vianney School. Photo provided by Denise Louviere | St. John Vianney Church

    Bishop Michael G. Duca’s Sacrament of Confirmation 2019 Winter Schedule

    Friday, Jan. 18                      7:00 PM                 Immaculate Conception,
    Denham Springs

    Monday, Jan. 21                    7:00 PM                St. Theresa of Avila, Gonzales

    Tuesday, Jan. 22                   7:00 PM                St. Mark, Gonzales

    Thursday, Jan. 24                7:00 PM       

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    Continuing Formation Days upcoming

    Dear People of God of the Diocese of Baton Rouge,

    The upcoming annual Continuing Formation days for our priests are Jan. 14-17. These days represent an important occasion for our priests’ renewal and growth in intellectual and spiritual formation, emotional maturity and physical well-being. Since these days are offered once a year and is a commitment by the diocese for their on-going formation, participation by our active priests is mandatory. 

    With the guidance of the Diocesan

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    Cathedral music director dies

    Robbie Giroir, 60, longtime musical director at St. Joseph Cathedral in Baton Rouge, died Dec. 23 after fighting an acute illness.  

    Giroir served for more than 30 years as the musical director at St. Joseph Cathedral and also taught at Baton Rouge Magnet High School for 35 years.  

    Besides being a musician and teacher, he was also a pilot and collector extraordinaire, and his home, with an interesting mix of whimsical memorabilia and valuable, one-of-a-kind collectables,

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    Noted actor sees God’s hand in latest role

    By Richard Meek

    The Catholic Commentator  

    Moments before taking the stage, a familiar feeling of nervousness that often morphed into anxiety engulfed Jim Coleman.  

    Jim Coleman captured Father August Tolton’s love for the Eucharist on his journey to becoming the first African-American priest in America during the production, “Tolton: From Slave to Priest.” Photo by Debbie Shelley | The Catholic Commentator 

     

    He immediately dialed in his

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    SITTING IN SANTA’S LAP

    Josiah Franklin, 7 months, sits in Bishop Michael G. Duca’s lap before the bishop gives him a gift at the bishop’s distribution of gifts to children of families in need at the St. Vincent de Paul Society on Dec. 22. Approximately 5,600 gifts were collected that were sorted and wrapped by about 800 volunteers, according to SVDP CEO and Executive Director Michael Acaldo. “The success of the effort started with the smile on the bishop’s and children’s faces,” said Acaldo. Bishop Duca carries on a tradition that

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    LIGHTING THE WAY

     

     

     

    St. Joseph’s Academy/Catholic High School | Baton Rouge 

    Catholic Elementary of Pointe Coupee | New Roads 

    Sacred Heart of Jesus School | Baton Rouge 

    St. Aloysius School | Baton Rouge 

    St. Alphonsus School

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    Full of Grace Cafe offers coffee, hope

    By Debbie Shelley

    The Catholic Commentator   

    The newly opened Full of Grace Café at Holy Rosary Church in St. Amant is a collective dream of its parishioners and pastor Father Josh Johnson that is meeting the needs of the less fortunate and giving them hope for a better future. 

    Bishop Michael Duca blesses the new Full of Grace Café as well as the people attending the ceremony.  Photo

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    BLESSED TO BE HOME

    CCDBR helps thousands of flood victims

    By Richard Meek

    The Catholic Commentator 

    Adam Dunn’s plans for Thanksgiving are similar to many others. 

     

    Adam Dunn cooks dinner in his new home following the 2016 flood. Dunn, who is disabled, was able to purchase the FEMA trailer through Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton

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    OLOL’s 95-year history a family affair

    By Bonny Van

    The Catholic Commentator 

    In an era of constant change in medical and technological protocol in the health care industry, it is amazing to realize that in Baton Rouge, Catholic health care through Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center has been going strong for 95 years and continues moving and growing for future generations.  

     

    The State of Louisiana purchased the old site on Capitol

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    JP2 Project inspirational for CTK students

    By Debbie Shelley

    The Catholic Commentator

    Sipping on a cup of coffee from the Corner Stone Café at Christ the King Church and Catholic Center BatonRouge, Rachel Haydel savored a favorite, familiar routine for many students to settle into the fall semester, chatting over a cup of java. But it was evident from the way her conversation lifted away from “the home of the Tigers” and plunged into the heart of Europe and the stomping grounds of one of the most beloved saints of this century that

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    #iGiveCatholic scheduled Nov. 27

    By Richard Meek

    The Catholic Commentator

    Entering its third year, #iGiveCatholic has proven to be a financial boon in the Diocese of Baton Rouge, raising nearly a combined $100,000.

    A year ago, diocesan agencies raised $49,675, compared to $47,500 in 2016, the diocese’s first year of participation in the program, which was initially launched in 2015 by the Archdiocese of New Orleans. Additionally, the number of donors increased from 470 in 2016 to 476. 

    Stewardship director Tammy Abshire is optimistic the upward trend continues Nov. 27, when #iGiveCatholic is scheduled from midnight until

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    St. Vincent to serve Thanksgiving meals

    By Richard Meek

    The Catholic Commentator

    The Society of St. Vincent de Paul and Holiday Helpers are partnering for a second consecutive year to host the annual Thanksgiving dinner at the Raising Cane’s River Center in Baton Rouge. 

    A year ago, St. Vincent de Paul and Holiday Helpers joined together to continue a holiday tradition that has spanned three decades. Dinners will be served from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

    The annual Thanksgiving dinner for the homeless and needy will be served in St. Vincent de Paul’s dining room, with meals being served from

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    LAS OBRAS CORPORALE DE MISERICORDIA, no 1

    Pe. Donnell Kirchner, CSSR

    Paroquia de San Geraldo

    Quien segue Jesus y vive  bajo la inspiracion del Espiritu Santo produce frutos y resultados de su vivencia.  Su vida es marcada por obras que muestram que alguna cosa diferente esta’ sucediendo en el  interior de la persona. 

    Una manera de saber si estamos viviendo la fe cristiana es practicar las Obras Corporales de Misericordia, pues es un senal visible que Cristro vive en nuestros corazones. 

    La lista de las obras de misericordia son acciones caritativas mediante las cuales ayudamos a nuestro prójimo

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    Red Stick Catholic Fest

    By Debbie Shelley

    The Catholic Commentator 

    Gospel messages set to the rhythm of electric guitars, drums and intertwining vocals stirred youth to dance, high-five and hug as they entered the Catholic Life Center for the first Red Stick Catholic Fest on Nov. 10. They spent the day connecting faith with the body, mind and soul. 

    With the help of a slingshot, T-shirts flew through the air to Red Stick Catholic Fest attendees hoping to be

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    FranU honors community leaders

    Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University (FranU) recognized the service contributions of three alumni and one community leader during the 2018 Fête des Fidèles Annual Fundraiser and 95-year anniversary celebration on Nov. 10 at L’Auberge Baton Rouge. 

    In addition to the annual awards, FranU celebrated “95 Years of Franciscan Servant Leadership” by honoring individuals who have helped build its educational legacy that has been making a difference since 1923. 

    Fête des Fidèles, a French phrase

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    When the Tide rolls, extra prayers needed

    By Richard Meek

    The Catholic Commentator 

    Three hours before good was to take on its knavish, crimson-sheathed ghost of the past, several hundred faithful gathered for Mass, perhaps sneaking in one last prayer, one final rosary.  

    Christ the King Church and Catholic Center pastor Father Andrew Merrick prays at the beginning of the vigil Mass only hours before the LSU-Alabama game on Nov.

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    Advent founded on Mary’s faith

    By Debbie Shelley

    The Catholic Commentator
    (First of a series) 

     Imagine: You stop to pray in the middle of your day. There’s a stirring in the air … a glow … a powerful presence. What’s happening? Who is this?! Your heart pounds, you tremble as an angel stands before you.  

    “Do not be afraid, for you have found favor with God,” the angel tells you.  

    As we venture through Advent and anticipate God’s

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    PRIEST APPRECIATION

    Father Armit Raj, parochial vicar at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Maringouin, St. Francis Xavier Cabrini Parish in Livonia and St. Joseph Parish in Grosse Tete, was honored at a reception as part of a priest appreciation ceremony on Oct. 20. The reception, which was hosted by the KPC Mary Immaculate Council #119 and St. Aubry Ladies Court #119 in Maringouin, was held at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Church hall. Grand Lady Trymeka McCoy and Grand Knight Sam Watson presented Father Raj with a monetary

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    MOVING DAY

    Movers spent the week of Nov. 12 moving the Department of Archives from its location at the Catholic Life Center to its new building on Parker Street, located behind the CLC. Specialty movers were called in because some of the items being moved were more than 200 years old. Photo by Richard Meek | The Catholic Commentator

    Cristo Rey president embraces school’s unique mission

    By Richard Meek

    The Catholic Commentator

    Eric Engemann nestled into his new chair, still acclimating to his new digs.

    Teenage voices, bursting with a hope for the future perhaps for the first time in their young lives, filtered through the window of his modest office housed in a modular building.

    Six days into his new job as president of Cristo Rey Baton Rouge Franciscan High School, Engemann was comfortable, any lingering doubts he might have had regarding leaving his previous position as executive director as SportsBR erased by the warmth and acceptance he has

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    Ocho sacerdotes vinculados a Baton Rouge acusado de abusar sexualmente de menores

    Por Richard Meek

    El Comentarista Católico

    Ocho sacerdotes que han ministrado en iglesias ubicadas en la Diócesis de Baton Rouge se encuentran entre una lista de 57 miembros del clero liberados por la Arquidiócesis de Nueva Orleans que han sido acusados ​​de abusar sexualmente de un menor, lo que llevó a su expulsión del ministerio.

    Varios de los ocho sacerdotes nombrados sirvieron cuando lo que ahora es la Diócesis de Baton Rouge todavía era parte de la archidiócesis. La Diócesis se formó en 1961.

    Los sacerdotes y las Iglesias en las que servían

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    Father Vavasseur dies at age 85

    Father Henry C. Vavasseur, 85, retired priest of the Diocese of Baton Rouge, died Oct. 26 at Ollie Steele Burden Manor Nursing Home in Baton Rouge. Father Vavasseur was born in Port Allen and attended Catholic High School in Baton Rouge; St. Joseph Seminary in St. Benedict; Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans; and, Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.  

    He was ordained a priest in June 1958. His pastoral assignments included Holy Family Church in Port Allen; St. John the

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    Eight priests with ties to Baton Rouge accused of sexually abusing minors

    By Richard Meek

    The Catholic Commentator

    Eight priests who have ministered at churches located in the Diocese of Baton Rouge were among a list of 57 clergy members released by the Archdiocese of New Orleans who have been accused of sexually abusing a minor, which led to their removal from ministry.  

    Several of the eight priests named served when what is now the Diocese of Baton Rouge was still part of the archdiocese. The diocese was formed in 1961.  

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