Fr. Papi Reddy Yeruva leads outdoor Stations of the Cross on Good Friday at Our Lady of Sorrows School in Ladysmith, assisted by Dcn. Craig Voldberg. (Facebook photo: Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School)

Jenny Snarski
Catholic Herald Staff

“Catholic Home Mission funding has provided a great gift to the diocese,” affirms Chris Newkirk, one of the diocese’s Chancery employees who leads and facilitates many of the benefitting programs.

“We are able to provide many programs at very reduced costs because of the generosity of so many people,” she added. “Without this funding, several of these programs would cease to exit.”

Newkirk expressed her gratitude for the generosity of donors: “The amounts (and programs) that it has helped us defray over the years has varied, but the positive impact has remained a constant.”

For 10 years, money received from Catholic Home Missions have offset the cost of programming in the following areas: International priests’ orientation and ongoing training; continuing education and formational resources for priests; permanent diaconate formation; seminary education and priestly vocations resources; School of Servant Leadership; lay ministry enrichment; and professional development days.

Dr. Robert Lecheler serves various roles for Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School and parish as well as working with the international priests and their staff member.

He commented, “I see the amazing impact these priests have had on their parishes and the diocese. I am impressed with how grateful the priests are for the opportunity to be spiritual leaders … [and] how well received they are by parishioners and staff members.”

Lecheler called it “a privilege” to work with these persons and added, “Providing this additional support on behalf of Bishop Powers I believe sends a strong message of the valued ministry of our international priests.”

Newkirk encouraged people to contribute and extended the invitation to participate in one of the programs mentioned, “so that you can experience the positive impact first hand.”