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For convocation delegates, it’s about unifying in faith in a troubled world

Nick Lee, left, Karen Nollkemper, Theresa Ruzicka and Kurt Nelson prayed at an evening Marian devotion service July 1 at the Convocation of Catholic Leaders: The Joy of the Gospel in America in Orlando, Fla. They were among the St. Louis delegates that are now charged with leading the archdiocese toward building missionary disciples.

ORLANDO, Fla. — For some it was about keeping young people in the Church. Others wanted to hear about diocesan ministries in another locale and perhaps bring an idea home. A few more were glad they could be heard by a bishop or two.

Whatever their reason to travel to hot, humid Florida for four days in the middle of summer, the 3,500 delegates to the "Convocation of Catholic Leaders: The Joy of the Gospel in America" headed home July 4 with renewed energy to set a new course for the U.S. Catholic Church.

MEET THE RADICALS

Carolyn Yandell shared her ideas and experiences with other St. Louis delegates at the Convocation of Catholic Leaders: The Joy of the Gospel in America in Orlando, Fla.

Catholic Convocation delegates reflect on the call to missionary discipleship 

‘A servant’s heart’ | State of Missouri recognizes and honors Cadet Thomas Surdyke’s final act of heroism

Kathryn Ziesig
Laura Elbl, a friend of the Surdyke family, comforted Rosemary Surdyke following the signing of a bill that will name a stretch of I-55 in honor of her brother Cadet Thomas Surdyke, a former St. Pius X student who died on vacation after saving a civilian from drowning. Governor Eric Greitens signed the bill on June 29 at St. Pius X High School by the football field where Cadet Surdyke used to play.

"No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends."

— John 15:13

State representative Elaine Gannon quoted this Bible verse at a ceremony in which Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens signed into law a bill to the honor the late Thomas Surdyke.

'Special Assignments'

In the annual big shuffle of priestly appointments each June, most moves involve the comings and goings at parishes throughout the Archdiocese of St. Louis.

Newly ordained priests get their first assignments, associates become first-time pastors or parochial administrators and pastors move to new parishes, either as pastors or senior associates. Meanwhile, a few veteran priests call it a day, figuratively hanging up their collars for retirement.

'This is the day'

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In a pew with his family, young Liam Corley, age 6, watched intently as the events unfolded around the altar at St. Monica Church.

In the Rite of Dedication, Auxiliary Bishop Mark S. Rivituso blessed the altar, laid in the rectangular marble stone containing a relic, then anointed the stone and the granite surface with sacred chrism.

As the choir, including Liam's sister, Emily, filled the church with song, Bishop Rivituso worked his way around the sacred table, spreading the blessed oil by hand and making sure all four corners and everything in between were covered.

Historic Fatima statue becomes centerpiece of pilgrimage site for centenary celebration

Parishioners pass by the Our Lady of Fatima Statue at the Basilica of St. Louis, King of France (Old Cathedral) on July 8 during evening Mass.

In May 1970, Cardinal John J. Carberry led a delegation of 88 people from St. Louis on a pilgrimage to Fatima, Portugal. It was the first time an English-speaking prelate had been invited to celebrate Mass at the Fatima shrine; he did so before an estimated 500,000 pilgrims from around the world on May 13 — the 53rd anniversary of the Blessed Mother's first apparition to three Portuguese children.

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