Canons Regular in Springfield, IL
Three priests to serve at Springfield parish that includes two historic churches
At the invitation of Bishop Thomas J. Paprocki, three priests of the Canons Regular will serve in Springfield, Illinois. With the blessing of Fr. C. Frank Phillips, CR, Rev. James Isaacson, SJC, Rev. Scott Thelander, SJC, and Rev. Kevin Mann, SJC left for Springfield on July 1st.
‘The Springfield Trio’ in front of Sacred Heart Church:
Rev. Scott Thelander, SJC, Rev. James Isaacson, SJC, Rev. Kevin Mann, SJC
Three Canons Regular of St. John Cantius will live and work at St. Katharine Drexel Parish, 1720 South Grand Ave. E., which is made up of St. Patrick Church and Sacred Heart Church. In addition to staffing these churches the 3 priests will practice parochial ministry and will be able to share the charism of the young community that has become known in Chicago at St. John Cantius Parish as well as at St. Peter Parish in Volo, Illinois.
Bishop Thomas J. Paprocki
Bishop Thomas Paprocki knows the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius from his days as chancellor and auxiliary bishop in the Chicago Archdiocese. As “Father Paprocki” he would offer the 11am Latin Mass at St. John Cantius. Bishop Paprocki witnessed a cultural and spiritual renaissance at St. John Cantius as well as the restoration of the dilapidated church building.
Bishop Paprocki sees some similarities between St. Katharine Drexel and St. John Cantius as it was in the 1970s and ’80s. But he’s also encouraged the progress at both Springfield churches, including the installation of a lift at St. Patrick and plastering and painting at Sacred Heart, among other projects.
St. Katharine Drexel is a culturally diverse parish that currently counts 316 families, including African-American and Hispanic Catholics. The Spanish Mass will continue to be offered. Two of three priests coming to Springfield speak Spanish and have helped out at Spanish Masses in parishes in Chicago. The Canons Regular will be able to share the riches of the Catholic Liturgy in both its forms for the good of the faithful.
Bishop Paprocki said the priests could inject “new energy and new direction” into St. Katharine Drexel while respecting the different communities that make up the parish. “They’re eager to take on the challenge,” he said.
Please keep our community and especially Fr. Thelander, Fr. Isaacson, and Fr. Mann in your prayers as they take on this new assignment.
Saint Patrick Church of St. Katharine Drexel Parish
Sacred Heart Church of St. Katharine Drexel Parish
Interior of Sacred Heart Church