Melrose, Freeport students learn good things can come from tragedy

By Kristi Anderson The Visitor Sacred Heart School in Freeport invited students and staff from St. Mary’s School in Melrose to pray, share a meal and get to know one another March 18, just one week after their church suffered a devastating fire. In the hours and days following the fire at St. Mary’s March…

In wake of Melrose church fire, St. Mary School feels community’s support

Kristi Anderson The Visitor When students returned to St. Mary’s School in Melrose on Monday, March 14, they were abuzz with stories and questions about the fire that damaged St. Mary’s Church March 11. “The kids have lots of questions,” said Robert Doyle, the school’s principal. “We can listen and hear their stories but we…

Melrose-area community comes together in wake of St. Mary Church fire

The Visitor On the morning after St. Mary Church in Melrose suffered a devastating fire, small groups of people gathered around the building to survey the damage, take photos with their cell phones, and offer comfort to one another. Some, like parishioner Bob Leukam, had gathered there the night before, too, when fire departments from…

CRS Rice Bowl recipe #5 – Doing more with less during Lent

For each week of Lent, The Visitor is highlighting Catholic Relief Services’ work with a story and simple, meatless recipe from a country the agency serves. Place the money saved into your CRS Rice Bowl to feed our brothers and sisters in need around the world. At the end of Lent, individuals can give their…

Teens hope to build relationships on mission trip to Mexico

By Dianne Towalski The Visitor Stephanie Jimenez and Esmeralda Mancilla will experience Easter in Mexico this year. The two Catholic high school seniors from central Minnesota will spend 10 days there, but it won’t be a vacation. Jimenez and Mancilla are traveling to Mexico March 19 with Mayuli Bales, director of the Office of Multicultural…

Catholic Foundation updates logo

The Catholic Foundation for the Diocese of Saint Cloud recently unveiled its new logo — an asymmetrical sage-green cross. The words below now say “For the Diocese of Saint Cloud.” “The words used to be ‘Of the Diocese’,” said Curt Hanson, the foundation’s executive director. “We now say ‘for the diocese’ to emphasize that the…

DCCW retreat keynoter speaks of encountering God through mercy, sacraments

By Rita Meyer For The Visitor Nearly 200 women were treated to a day of inspiration and reflection on how “Mercy Leads to Joy!” at the St. Cloud Diocesan Council of Catholic Women’s Lenten retreat Feb. 27 at Sts. Peter and Paul Church in Richmond. Following the morning registration, Mass was celebrated by Benedictine Father…

Priests’ council hears reports on forgiveness festival, pastoral letter

The Visitor Members of the Presbyteral Council heard reports March 8 about the Festival of Forgiveness and Bishop Donald Kettler’s recent pastoral letter on mercy, and gave their approval for a draft 2016-2017 budget for the offices of the Diocese of St. Cloud. The council, which is comprised of priest representatives from around the diocese…

Shrine profile – Assumption Chapel

Pope Francis declared an Extraordinary Year of Mercy, beginning Dec. 8, 2015, and ending Nov. 20, 2016. Bishop Donald Kettler has designated places of pilgrimage and shrines within the St. Cloud Diocese for this Holy Year, inviting the faithful to experience grace and reconciliation as they rediscover joy in the mercy of God. A pilgrimage…

Festival of Forgiveness called a ‘smashing success’

By Kristi Anderson The Visitor For the last few years, Pope Francis has celebrated “24 hours for the Lord,” a penitential celebration at St. Peter’s Basilica. The event includes several hours for confession and eucharistic adoration. After hearing about this initiative as well as the 24-hour Festival of Forgiveness in the Archdiocese of Chicago last…