Catholic Educators Gather in Chicago
Most Rockford Diocese Schools Send Representatives to NCEA
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
May 16, 2019
ROCKFORD—Most all of the Catholic schools in the Rockford Diocese attended one, two or all three days of the NCEA conference in Chicago, says Vito DeFrisco, assistant superintendent for Curriculum, Assessment and School Recognition for the diocese.
It was the 23rd NCEA conference for DeFrisco, who also is serving as interim superintendent at Maria... Read More
May 16, 2019
The Rev. Jerome L. Leake — Pastor of St. Joseph Parish, Aurora, to retire with the permission of The Most Rev. Bishop, effective June 17, 2019.
The Rev. Robert J. McClellan — Parochial Vicar at St. Peter Parish, South Beloit, to retire with the permission of The Most Rev. Bishop, effective June 17, 2019.Read More
May 16, 2019
ROCKFORD—The Catholic Women’s League in Rockford installed officers at its annual Mass for Peace on May 8 at the Poor Clares Corpus Christi Monastery Chapel. 
Bishop David Malloy and Father Leonard Jacobs, CWL spiritual director, celebrated the Mass assisted by Deacon Ronald Graw. 
Bishop Malloy... Read More
May 16, 2019
ROCKFORD—Bishop David Malloy will celebrate Mass on Memorial Day at 9 a.m. May 27 at Calvary Cemetery. 
The diocesan cemetery is at 8616 W. State St. (U.S. Rt. 20) between Rockford and Winnebago.
This is the day Americans remember all those who have died in the service of our country. 
May 16, 2019
CRYSTAL LAKE—Rosemary Blazier was selected the Woman of Inspiration by the St Thomas the Apostle Woman’s Club here at its annual Woman’s Club spring luncheon, on May 2. 
Blazier has been an active parishioner at St Thomas for over 60 years, having taught high school religious ed, served as a lector, provided leadership in the Marr... Read More
Vote Denies Landmark Status
Rockford Council Falls Short; Cathedral Campus Fate Stays with Diocese
By Observer Staff
May 9, 2019
ROCKFORD—The Rockford City Council, after months of consideration, voted on whether or not to grant landmark designation to three buildings located on the Cathedral of St. Peter campus here May 6.
Because landmark status was sought against the wishes of the Diocese of Rockford and the Cathedral of St. Peter Parish as owners, a super majority of 10... Read More
May 9, 2019
DURAND—The Yeshua Institute has released an eight-part series of free webinars with the theme “Better Leaders, Better Parishes. “
Presented by Dr. Dan Ebener, the series’ content is based on his new book, “Pastoral Leadership: Best Practices for Church Leaders.“
These webinars are ... Read More
May 9, 2019
ELGIN—St. Thomas More Parish, 215 Thomas More Dr. here, will host Immaculée Ilibagiza May 31-June 1.
A Rwandan genocide survivor, she is the author of “Left To Tell: Discovering God Amidst the Rwandan Genocide.“ She is scheduled to speak about faith, hope, love and forgiveness.
Sessions will ... Read More
May 9, 2019
St. Mary School in Sterling had three winners in the annual Optimist Club’s poster contest.
Wyatt Widolff took first place and Brady Williamson took second place among boys.
Olivia Clark took third place among girls.
The winners were honored at a dinner and their winning pos... Read More
May 9, 2019
Joseph Noonan from Marian Central Catholic High School in Woodstock earned two awards at the state's Academic Challenge program competition.
Noonan took first place in physics and also earned a fourth place in mathematics during the April 23 competition.
By Lynne Conner, Observer Correspondent
May 2, 2019
ROCKFORD—Those “who began a good work” in the life of Boylan Central Catholic High School alumnae, Amanda Clement, are sharing in the performer’s success as Clement made a visit to her alma mater April 29. 
She spoke to choir students about her role in the Chicago production of the Broadway musical “Hamilton.”Read More
May 2, 2019
ROCKFORD—The Rockford City Council Codes and Regulations Committee, April 29,  affirmed their unanimous decision to recommend denial of applications to landmark three buildings on the Cathedral of St. Peter campus.
This decision comes after the Rockford City Council tabled a vote on the applications and sent the matter back to the Codes and R... Read More
May 2, 2019
BATAVIA—The Sisters of Mary Morning Star are presenting a Concert of Sacred Chant at Holy Cross Parish, 2300 Main St., here at 4 p.m. May 19.
The concert will feature sisters from both their American Novitiate in Ghent, Minn., and their priory in Madison, Wis. Proceeds from the concert will benefit a fund to buy their Motherhouse in Bergara, Spain... Read More
May 2, 2019
SPRING GROVE—On March 22, representatives of Knights of Columbus Queen of the Most Holy Rosary Council 12302 of St. Peter Parish in Spring Grove donated the proceeds from their Intellectual Disabilities (“Tootsie Roll”) drive to the Alexander Leigh Center for Autism in McHenry.
Lee Jones, Deputy Grand Knight; Scott Hastings, past Grand... Read More
Act for Your Faith
An Open Letter from Bishop David Malloy
April 29, 2019
I write today to ask the people of this diocese to join me in asking the members of the Rockford City Council to vote to deny the petitions filed by the Friends of Ziock to landmark the former chancery, former convent and the Cathedral of St. Peter School, all located on the Cathedral of St. Peter campus in Rockford.
Because the Cathedral o... Read More
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
April 25, 2019
DIOCESE—The annual appeal to support the diocesan Church will be announced the weekend of April 27-28 at parishes across the Diocese of Rockford.
“Send your Spirit into our hearts so that our faithful Stewardship might bear witness to the name of Jesus,” says the Appeal Prayer for the “Come Follow Me” campaign this year.Read More
By Pat Szpekowski, Observer Correspondent
April 25, 2019
‘I found it would be important that as mothers we could get together in fellowship, support each other in our journey, and strengthen our faith,” said Mia Handell, founder of the Catholic Moms Group at Holy Angels Parish in Aurora. 
“There was a mothers’ group at our parish in the (19)90s and 2000s,” Handell add... Read More
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
April 25, 2019
FREEPORT—The conversation about legislative bills that would deregulate abortion in extreme ways continued on April 16 as about a dozen people gathered to visit with State Sen. Brian Stewart (R-45) and State Rep. Andrew Chesney (R-89).
Both of these Freeport republicans are on record as prolife, so it might seem unnecessary to meet with them. But ... Read More
By Sharon Boehlefeld, Features Editor
April 25, 2019
In sharing their stories with others at Rockford University, three women from three continents discovered they had something in common.
“We all arrived in November,” said Janet Bilijeskovic, director of the refugee resettlement program for the Rockford Diocese Catholic Charities office.
Bilijeskovic was p... Read More
Two Jail Masses Welcome Men, Women at Easter
Bishop David Malloy continues his Easter custom at the Winnebago County Jail
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
April 25, 2019
ROCKFORD—On April 21, Bishop David Malloy continued his tradition of celebrating Mass at the Winnebago County Jail on Easter Sunday morning.
This year, he was pleased to be allowed to provide a second Mass for four women inmates right after an earlier Mass one floor below that welcomed about two dozen men to a classroom “church.” Deaco... Read More
From The Ashes
Bishop Malloy Explains How You Can Help Rebuild Notre Dame
April 25, 2019
April 17, 2019
Dear Friends in Christ,
This week we watched with sadness as fire tore through historic Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, causing severe damage to the centuries-old structure. The impact of the fire on the faithful of the city and of the world is immense and th... Read More
By Louise Brass, Observer Correspondent
April 11, 2019
MAYTOWN—St. Patrick would be proud! The people of the church named for him in Maytown have kept faith with the founding families and maintained the church building through thick and thin for 100 years.
Although the population in the area has thinned in recent decades, today 48 families keep this parish alive and vibrant. While others have moved on... Read More
By Louise Brass, Observer Correspondent
April 11, 2019
MAYTOWN—The roots of St. Patrick Parish in Maytown go back almost 180 years, and the founding families planted those roots deep.
This parish was started in 1840, before the Civil War. The first Mass was said in the home of William Dolan, just a few miles from the current church site, at 1336 Maytown Road.  A Vincentian priest, Father Parody, ... Read More
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
April 4, 2019
SPRINGFIELD—It was a busy day March 20 at the State Capitol as an estimated 4,000 pro-life advocates from around Illinois gathered to lobby their elected officials and participate in an afternoon rally against bills that are moving through the House and Senate that would radically deregulate and encourage abortions in Illinois.
In a related effort... Read More
By Pat Szpekowski, Observer Correspondent
March 21, 2019
GENEVA— What’s the easiest way to connect with God? 
“Send Him a knee-mail,” said actor Brad Ellison, as he warmed up the 400-plus early afternoon audience attending the Cross and Light musical at St. Peter parish in Geneva on March 17. 
Father Jonathan Bakkelund, pastor, hoped the f... Read More
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
March 7, 2019
“Katie” has an inner joy that sparkles out, particularly when she talks about God.
Her deep happiness, rooted in God’s mercy, is hard won. Now in her mid-50s, Katie continues to recover from her two abortions, the first done when she was a high school sophomore and the second when she was a high school senior.
 Read More
March 7, 2019
DIOCESE—Bishop David Malloy asked that his Feb. 28 letter about abortion laws in Illinois be read at all weekend Masses on March 2 and 3. The text of the letter follows:
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I write to you at a moment of profound challenge to the citizens of the State of Illinois. I... Read More
March 7, 2019
Abortions laws are in flux in the United States, ranging from a New York law that allows abortion up to delivery to a Missouri law that bans abortion when the heartbeat of an unborn child can be detected.
Catholic News Service reports new abortion legislation  working its way through Vermont — increasing availablity — and Tennessee &mda... Read More
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
February 28, 2019
ROCKFORD—“People want to talk with us because we have a wife (and maybe) children,” said Deacon Ignacio Felix.
Deacon Thomas Petit agreed. “People see us (as someone who) has walked in their shoes,” he said. “They think they have a better chance to be understood.”
They were a... Read More
February 21, 2019
DIOCESE—On Feb. 13, two new abortion bills were introduced in the Illinois General Assembly. 
They are House Bill (HB) 2467: Parent Notice Abortion- Repeal, and HB 2495: The Reproductive Health Act.
“There is also a push on in Illinois to ‘modernize’ Illinois’ abortion laws,” ... Read More
February 21, 2019
DIOCESE—A vote is expected on Feb. 25 in the U.S. Senate on the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (S. 311/H.R 962). 
If passed, it would require health care providers to care for an abortion survivor as they would any newborn.
Archbishop Joseph Naumann, chairman of the USCCB committee on Pro-Lif... Read More
November 15, 2018
ROCKFORD—The Diocese of Rockford on Nov. 14, released a list of those priests, deacons, and religious against whom a substantiated allegation of sexual abuse of a minor has been reported.
The list includes the names of six diocesan priests, one permanent deacon and eight religious order priests who served for a time in the Diocese of Rockford.Read More
November 15, 2018
“With all my heart I seek you; do not let me stray from your commandments. In my heart I treasure your promise that I may not sin against you.” (Ps 119:10-11)
In January 2004, the Diocese of Rockford published a four-page report to the people of the Diocese of Rockford which outlined the history of sexual abuse of minors in the dioc... Read More
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