New seminarian’s vocation journey began on trip to Holy Land

For Ben Baker, it started in 2019 during a spring break trip to the Holy Land with students from the University of Illinois. Baker, whose home parish is St. Joseph in Olney, graduated from the University of Illinois in December 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering. At that time, he contacted the Diocese of Belleville asking to be accepted into the seminary. There currently are six seminarians in the diocese.

Bishop to ordain one man to transitional diaconate May 22

When Thomas Lugge is ordained by Bishop Michael McGovern as a transitional deacon May 22, he will begin the final year of formation before ordination to the priesthood. The transitional diaconate will be Lugge’s entry into the clerical state, which means he will become a member of the clergy. Bishop Michael McGovern called Lugge “a wonderful young man” and said he looks forward to ordaining him to the sacred priesthood next year.

Sister Elaine Freund created a place where it was ‘cool to be smart’

“Some make their mark on the soccer field. Some make history on the basketball court. I was never that sort,” says Jill Haberl Steffens, 1995 graduate of Gibault Catholic High School in Waterloo. “Sister Elaine Freund gave me, and many like me, another place to compete.” Steffens was a member of the Gibault Scholastic Bowl team, coached by Sister Elaine Freund, ASC, from 1992-1995.