2013 Alumni Reunion

Fr. Michael Caruso

Above:  Fr. Michael Caruso gives a presentation on Catholic Education in America

Below:  Br. Michael catches up with an alumnus during the social

Alumni

Alumni

Below:  Bishop Edward Weisenburger is principal celebrant for the Eucharist

Alumni

Alumni

Above:  Fr. Michael Caruso, SJ receives the Distinguished Alumnus Award

Below:  Bishop Edward Weisenburger is presented with a wooden crozier made by an Abbey monk

Alumni

2013 Alumni Ordinations

Conception Seminary College Alumni Ordinations 2013

Please pray for our Alumni

 Ordinations

Hess, Brian Cheyenne deacon Denver 16-Mar-13
Rodgers, Robert Cheyenne deacon NAC - Rome 3-Oct-13
Schinstock, Br. Victor  OSB Conception priest Conception Abbey 16-May-13
Sheller, Br. Paul  OSB Conception priest Conception Abbey 16-May-13
Martinez, Br. Macario OSB Conception deacon Conception Abbey 15-May-13
Anstey, Kevin Davenport deacon Cathedral - Davenport 13-Jul-13
Aubuchon, Christopher Jefferson City deacon Hermann - St. George 8-Jun-13
Doke, Jason Jefferson City priest Jeff City Cathedral 29-Jun-13
Fitzpatrick, John KC-SJ deacon Co-Cathedral, St. Joe 18-May-13
Zarse, Jaime Kansas City, KS deacon Topeka-Most Pure Heart of Mary 18-May-13
Buettner, Brian Oklahoma City priest OKC - Cathedral 29-Jun-13
Brashears, Christopher Oklahoma City deacon NAC - Rome 3-Oct-13
Bui, Linh Oklahoma City deacon OKC - Cathedral 1-Jun-13
Ruckel, Timothy Oklahoma City deacon OKC - Cathedral 1-Jun-13
Deloera, Cristobal Oklahoma City deacon OKC - Cathedral 1-Jun-13
Krittenbrink, Carson Oklahoma City deacon OKC - Cathedral 1-Jun-13
Capadano, Matthew Omaha deacon St. Cecelia Cathedral 24-May-13
Boyd, Benjamin Omaha deacon St. Cecelia Cathedral 24-May-13
Hatch, Lorenzo San Angelo priest Cathedral - San Angelo 8-Jun-13
Matthiesen, Samuel San Angelo priest Cathedral - San Angelo 8-Jun-13
Esquiliano, David Sioux City priest Cathedral - Sioux City 29-Jun-13
Arisman, Steven Springfield, IL deacon Springfield Cathedral 6-Apr-13
Nance, Todd Tulsa priest Holy Family Cathedral 25-May-13
Walsh, Andrew Wichita deacon St. Joseph - Wichita 23-May-13

Alumnus Reaches for the Stars

Alumnus Chuck Spinner (C '68) has recently published a book compiling favorite prayers of celebrities. Following is a press release Chuck was able to send in promotion of his book:

 

From sports to Hollywood to politics, it turns out that we really don’t know very much about the celebrities we pay so much attention to. We know why they’re famous, but we don’t know what motivates them and gives them strength. We don’t know what lays beneath the public persona.In A Book of Prayers: To the Heavens from the Stars (published by AuthorHouse), Chuck Spinner has compiled the favorite prayers of over 100 well known celebrities. Included among these famous people are Oscar winners, Heisman Trophy recipients, Olympic gold medalists, four-star generals, a Nobel Peace Prize recipient and even a monarch and three former Miss Americas.

Read more...

2012 Alumni Ordinations

Conception Seminary College Alumni Ordinations 2012

Please pray for our Alumni

 

Nguyen, Br. Patrick (Ngoc) CMC deacon CMC chapel 14-Jan-12
Nguyen, Br. Tam Van  CMC CMC deacon CMC chapel 14-Jan-12
Tran, Br. Mac  CMC CMC deacon CMC chapel 14-Jan-12
Vu, Br. Luu  CMC CMC deacon CMC chapel 14-Jan-12
Vu, Br. Tri  CMC CMC deacon CMC chapel 14-Jan-12
Nguyen, Br. Patrick (Ngoc) CMC priest CMC chapel 2-Jun-12
Nguyen, Br. Tam Van  CMC CMC priest CMC chapel 2-Jun-12
Tran, Br. Mac  CMC CMC priest CMC chapel 2-Jun-12
Vu, Br. Luu  CMC CMC priest CMC chapel 2-Jun-12
Vu, Br. Tri  CMC CMC priest CMC chapel 2-Jun-12
Letter, Br. Guerric  OSB Conception priest Conception Abbey 17-May-12
Schinstock, Br. Victor  OSB Conception deacon Conception Abbey 16-May-12
Sheller, Br. Paul  OSB Conception deacon Conception Abbey 16-May-12
Franklin, Colin Jefferson City priest Cathedral of St. Joseph 9-Jun-12
Nelen, Louis Jefferson City priest Cathedral of St. Joseph 9-Jun-12
Doke, Jason Jefferson City deacon NAC - Rome 4-Oct-12
Duran, Franklin Joliet priest Cathedral  2-Jun-12
Sandoval, Oswaldo KCK priest Cathedral of St. Peter 26-May-12
Haake, Adam KC-SJ priest Cathedral of the Immac. Conception 19-May-12
Johnson, Adam KC-SJ priest Cathedral of the Immac. Conception 19-May-12
Kneib, Benjamin KC-SJ priest Cathedral of the Immac. Conception 19-May-12
Murphy, Ian KC-SJ priest Cathedral of the Immac. Conception 19-May-12
Salazar, Darvin KC-SJ priest Cathedral of the Immac. Conception 19-May-12
Collins, Dustin Knoxville priest Sacred Heart Cathedral 2-Jun-12
Reyes, Alejandro Las Cruces deacon St. Mary's Seminary - Houston 26-Nov-11
Reyes, Alejandro Las Cruces priest Cathedral 2-Jun-12
Buettner, Brian Oklahoma City deacon NAC - Rome 4-Oct-12
Carl, Greg Omaha priest St. Cecelia Cathedral 2-Jun-12
Netusil, James Omaha priest St. Cecelia Cathedral 2-Jun-12
Hatch, Lorenzo San Angelo deacon Sacred Heart Parish, Abilene, TX 4-May-12
Matthiesen, Samuel San Angelo deacon St. Boniface Parish, Olfen, TX 14-May-12
Esquiliano, David Sioux City deacon NAC - Rome 4-Oct-12
Nance, Todd Tulsa deacon St. Meinrad 14-Apr-12

Fr. Mell Stead, CSC alum and community activist, dies at 77

BEAVERTON — Father Mell Stead, a retired Archdiocese of Portland priest known for his work with Portland’s African American community in the 1960s, died Friday, Aug. 1 in his home at St. John Vianney Residence after dealing with various illnesses. He was 77.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 7 at Cathedral of Immaculate Conception in Portland, with burial following at Mt. Calvary Cemetery.

Father Stead was born May 28, 1930 in Kewanee, Ill, to Mell Stead Sr. and Alice Engels. After early education in Kewanee, his high school seminary education was at Sacred Heart Seminary in Donaldson, Ind., from 1944 to 1948. He then completed his college and seminary studies for the Archdiocese of Portland at Conception Seminary in Conception, Mo., for eight years until 1956. During that time, he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree.

Father Stead was ordained May 26, 1956 at Conception by Cardinal John Patrick Cody for the Archdiocese of Portland.

During his first assignment at Immaculate Heart, where he was eventually named pastor in 1962, Father Stead became a well-known advocate for the African American community in North Portland.

In 1970, he was made pastor at St. Mary Parish in Albany and finally pastor at Holy Family in 1981.

He served there until 1993, when he was appointed pastor of St. Augustine Parish in Lincoln City, a post he held until retirement in 2004. There, he was known for having helped raise funds to build a new parish hall.

Father Stead is survived by his sister, Alice Marie Hammons.

2011 Alumni Ordinations

Conception Seminary College Alumni Ordinations 2011

Please pray for our Alumni

 

Truong, Br. Augustine

CMC

deacon

1/15/2011

Tran, Br Timothy 

CMC

deacon

1/15/2011

Truong, Br. Augustine

CMC

priest

6/4/2011

Tran, Br Timothy 

CMC

priest

6/4/2011

Letter, Br. Guerric

Conception

deacon

5/19/2011

Ponce, Anastacio

Davenport

deacon

8/20/2011

Hock, Neal

Grand Island

priest

6/10/2011

Reid, Nick

Jefferson City

priest

6/4/2011

Franklin, Colin

Jefferson City

deacon

5/28/2011

Nelen, Louis

Jefferson City

deacon

5/28/2011

Clayton, Barry

KCK

priest

5/28/2011

Sandoval, Oswaldo

KCK

deacon

5/21/2011

Haake, Adam

KC-St. Joseph

deacon

10/6/2011

Johnson, Adam

KC-St. Joseph

deacon

10/6/2011

Kneib, Benjamin

KC-St. Joseph

deacon

5/21/2011

Murphy, Ian

KC-St. Joseph

deacon

5/21/2011

Salazar, Darvin

KC-St. Joseph

deacon

12/10/2011

Collins, Dustin

Knoxville

deacon

6/11/2011

Owens, Doug

Knoxville

priest

5/28/2011

Stanley, Cory

Oklahoma City

priest

7/8/2011

Carl, Greg

Omaha

deacon

5/27/2011

Netusil, James

Omaha

deacon

5/27/2011

Syring, Andrew

Omaha

priest

6/4/2011

Vogel, Kevin

Omaha

priest

6/4/2011

De Loera, Marco

Wichita

priest

5/28/2011

 

Alumni Reunion 2008

From the time we’re born to the time we pass away from this world, our experiences continually influence who we are. Some small experiences may have a big impact on our lives and some big experiences may have a small impact on our lives. It is in how we choose to respond to these experiences that makes the difference. Every year, generations of Conception alumni return to their alma mater because the experiences they’ve had here have made a difference in their lives and the lives of others.

For this very reason, Conception Seminary College also presents a distinguished service award tSam Cline receives the Distinguished Alumni Awardo an alumnus who has taken the formation he has received here and made an impact on the lives of others. This year, the recipient of the award was Sam Cline (C ’78). Since 1981, Sam Cline has been employed with the State of Kansas as a Corrections Officer, serving as a Corrections Counselor, Lieutenant in the Staff Training Department, Shift Captain, Facility Investigator, and Administrative Captain. In July of 2007, Sam Cline became the 27th Warden of the Hutchinson Correctional Facility. Over the course of his years in correctional work, Sam has touched many lives, including those of his co-workers. Sam and his wife of twenty seven years, Carol, reside in Lyons, Kansas.

Another highlight of the reunion weekend is the keynote presentation. This year’s keynote was given by Fr. Ronald Knott, priest of the Archdiocese of Louisville who is now serving as the director of the Institute for Priests and Presbyterates at St. Meinrad, Indiana. His book entitled Intentional Presbyterates is one of the leading resources on diocesan presbyterates as a subject of study in its own right. The need for stronger presbyterates is a pressing one for many reasons; the area of vocations is but one application Fr. Knott gave in his presentation. “Young men won’t be attracted to a loose association of ‘lone rangers’ but to a strong fraternity of priests,” he pointed out. Moreover, the subject matter is relevant for priests, bishops, and the laity alike since it influences how we, as a Church, are effective. “In an age when priests are strained and can’t work any harder, they must work smarter,” Fr. Knott said. Building stronger presbyterates is one way for the Church to work smarter.

Fr. Knott speaks at the 2008 CSC Alumni Reunion

Wonderful weather, an informative keynote presentation, and plenty of light hearted reminiscing all made for yet another enjoyable Alumni Weekend.

Alumni Ordinations 2010

Conception Seminary College Alumni Ordinations 2010

Name Affiliation Ordination/Date
Francisco Godinez Boise priest, 10-Jun-10
Jose Ramirez Boise priest, 10-Jun-10
Tim Martinson Cheyenne priest, 24-May-10
Br Hilary Tran CMC CMC deacon, 16-Jan-10
Br. James Do CMC CMC deacon, 16-Jan-10
Br. Peter Tran CMC CMC deacon, 16-Jan-10
Br Hilary Tran CMC CMC priest, 5-Jun-10
Br. James Do CMC CMC priest, 5-Jun-10
Br. Peter Tran CMC CMC priest, 5-Jun-10
Neal Hock Grand Island deacon, 7-Oct-10
Joshua Brown Grand Island priest, 4-Jun-10
Nick Reid Jefferson City deacon, 10-Apr-10
Francis Doyle Jefferson City priest, 22-May-10
Dylan Schrader Jefferson City priest, 22-May-10
Stephen Eickhoff Joliet priest, 5-Jun-10
Joshua Miller Joliet priest, 5-Jun-10
Evan Harkins KC-St. Joseph priest, 29-May-10
Phillip Luebbert KC-St. Joseph priest, 29-May-10
Matthew Benjamin KC-St. Joseph priest, 29-May-10
Barry Clayton Kansas City, KS deacon, 22-May-10
Douglas Owens Knoxville deacon, 5-Jun-10
Joshua Stengel Little Rock deacon, 8-Oct-09
Cory Stanley Oklahoma City deacon, 7-Oct-10
Andrew Syring Omaha deacon, 28-May-10
Kevin Vogel Omaha deacon, 28-May-10
Peter O’Donnell Salina priest, 22-May-10
Stephen Thompson Springfield, IL priest, 29-May-10
Kerry Wakulich Tulsa priest, 29-May-10
Marco De Loera Wichita deacon, 28-May-10
Chad Arnold Wichita priest, 29-May-10
Maximilian Biltz Wichita priest, 29-May-10
Patrick Reilley Wichita priest, 29-May-10

Fr. Daniel Appointed Alumni Director

In May of 2009 Fr. Daniel was assigned to be Director of Alumni having become a Conception alumnus with his first year of high school in 1955-56. He  belongs to the graduating class of Conception Seminary College of 1964.  After his ordination Aug 15, 1967 he has had a variety of assignments including retreat director, associate pastor, novice and junior director, vocation director, farm manager, seminary chaplain, and dean of students. From 1995 until 2007 he was pastor of St. Peter’s in Stanberry and St. Patrick’s in Ford City. In June of 2007 he was named Prior and Director of Planned Giving. He reports that each assignment has been a learning experience with many happy surprises along the way.

Cathedral Rector Celebrates 40 Years of Ministry

The following article originally appeared in the Catholic Key, the newspaper for the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph. It is reprinted here with permission from the editor.

KANSAS CITY — Nothing improves a walk on the beach like a fruitful dialogue with the King of Kings!

Monsignor Robert Gregory, a priest of our diocese for 40 years and currently rector of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Kansas City, was born in St. Joseph in October 1943 and raised in St. Joseph’s parish in Easton. The tenth of eleven children — “It was a very Catholic family,” he says — he had ample time to discern God’s plan for his life while working at solitary tasks on the farm.

“A religious vocation was very common in our family,” he says. “Two of my older sisters are Benedictines in Atchison. Then a very good friend started at St. John’s seminary when I was 14, and that started me thinking about that.”

Msgr. Gregory received a high school diploma from St. John’s in 1961 and spent the next eight years at Conception Abbey major seminary. “The priests and the monastic community were wonderful,” he recalls. “Community living as it was lived at Conception Abbey was very attractive.”

He liked Benedictine life at Conception so much that he considered joining the community. But gradually it became clear that God intended him to be a diocesan priest, and Bishop Charles Helmsing ordained Robert Gregory a priest on May 31, 1969 at St. Joseph’s in Easton.

“Bishop Helmsing was filled with holiness. He always treated me as a true spiritual father,” Msgr. Gregory says.

But it was a bad time to be a Catholic priest, perhaps especially so for a young, gifted and brand-new priest straight from the seminary. Some older priests were leaving the priesthood. An unfortunate few left the Church altogether.

“It made me think, why am I any different? Will this happen to me? They entered with zeal as I did and six, seven, ten years later they were leaving. So I was filled with doubt.”

“These were very, very difficult years in the Church and in society,” he continues. “We had the perfect storm of Vietnam. Dr. Martin Luther King was killed. And the third source of turmoil was from the beginnings of implementing the Second Vatican Council.”

Pope Paul VI’s July 1968 encyclical “Humanae Vitae” was perhaps the most controversial thing of all. It reaffirmed Catholic teaching against artificial birth control, and foresaw with disconcerting clarity the social consequences of ignoring this teaching. Yet at the time, Humanae Vitae was widely criticized inside the Church, and only added to the Church’s growing chaos.

“Cardinal Boyle in Washington made every priest in his diocese swear allegiance to it. Quite a few wouldn’t do it. It was the perfect storm brewing in the Church,” Msgr. Gregory says.

Meanwhile, newly ordained Father Gregory was assigned to a parish where the pastor and assistant pastor were the Chancellor and Vice-Chancellor of the diocese. Their young assistant taught in the grade school, taught at a diocesan high school, and served as chaplain for a large local hospital — all while functioning as a full-time priest in a large parish.

“I was very lonely and after a lot of prayer, discernment and with Bishop Helmsing’s blessing I left four years to the month after ordination to get my head together,” Msgr. Gregory recalls.

“But I never turned my back on the Church. I went regularly to Confession and went to Mass and prayed the Breviary every day that I could.”

He held a series of good jobs in Washington, Tennessee and finally San Diego — where a walk on the beach in 1976 would change his life.

On that walk, “Christ spoke to me in a dialogue that took place in my heart,” Msgr. Gregory says.

“He said, ‘Robert, are you happy?’ and I said ‘No, not really.’ ‘Why aren’t you happy? I’ve given you everything you wanted. You had good jobs, you bought and sold a house in Washington. You have all the freedom you desired.

‘But you’re still not happy. Why don’t you let Me make you happy by giving yourself to Me completely?’”

“I said, ‘How do I know I can trust you? What if you disappoint me?’ He said to me, ‘I died for you, didn’t I?’ So I said, ‘All right.’”

“That call of love has been repeated over and over in my priesthood. It’s a call to trust.”

Everything had changed for Father Gregory when he returned to active duty as a priest at Christmas of 1976. “What makes him such a wonderful priest, to me, is that we know he has the same human frailties that we have. He’s not holier than thou,” says Cathedral parish council chairman Ed Blasco.

“He absolutely walks the walk.”

“I think his adult personality reflects growing up in a very large farm family,” says Diocesan Chancellor Msgr. Bradley Offutt. “He’s not quick to pass negative judgments on people. He’s a wonderful respecter of persons. His strongest suit is perhaps his personal kindness.”

“Sometimes it seems like he’s burning the candle at both ends, he’s so giving,” says Cathedral finance council member Mike Henggler. “Once I watched him offer to help a guy who stopped him just before he processed down the aisle to start Mass. After Mass he did help him, too.”

“Since he’s been here we’ve done nothing but get better,” says Grand Knight John Parks of the Cathedral’s Knights of Columbus council. “He has helped bring community into the Cathedral. He seems to know instinctually what we need.”

“He’s been an extremely good boss,” says Deacon Steve Livingston. “I certainly consider him a mentor, and a good friend too. I feel privileged to work with him here.”

Forty years of pastoral experience have left Msgr. Gregory with one characteristic approach to parish management noted by many.

“If you ever need someone to pray over you, he’s the guy,” says pastoral council member and former parish administrator Gary Evans. “I say that because several times I’d bring issues to him and he’d say maybe we should just pray about it. And about two or three weeks later, our problem would be solved.”

“Where there’s a problem, the first thing he says is that we should pray about this. Someone else might just wring his hands, but Monsignor always just turns to God,” Blasco says.

“Again, it’s an example of walking the walk.”

“He’s such a humble servant. He truly listens to all of us, from his staff to his flock to the homeless man who comes to the door,” says Gail Monaco, the Cathedral’s long-time Executive Secretary. “He was just what the Cathedral needed.”

“I am convinced he was sent by God.”

“I believe in the grace of office, in that God always puts people in the positions He wants them to be in,” Msgr. Gregory says. “So I would say to any young man considering the priesthood: don’t let your human failures and weaknesses deter you. If you were perfect, He wouldn’t have called you.

“In spite of weakness, doubts and confusion I’ve had a very fulfilling and a very happy life as a priest. I hope to continue that for a while.”

Msgr. Robert Gregory, second from left, poses at a Nov. 26, 2006, Solemn Vespers at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception with other then-newly elevated monsignors, the late Msgr. Richard Dierkes, Msgr. Bradley Offutt and Msgr. Robert Murphy.
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