St. Pius X School is looking for a full-time Special Education teacher. The candidate should have a KY certification in learning disabilities or a similar degree. All interested candidates may send their resume to Mrs. Jill Lonnemann, Principal at [email protected].
The Department of Catholic Schools of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Covington, KY seeks to identify secretarial candidates with a history of increasingly responsible experience who possess sound administrative and reporting skills, along with the demeanor and organizational skills to professionally and effectively interact with all levels of Diocesan Curia staff and other Diocesan constituencies. This position requires confidentiality, initiative, attention to detail, and a strong orientation to customer service. Duties utilize MS Office software and include a wide variety of written communications, scheduling of appointments and meetings, planning and oversight of Departmental programs and liturgies, and primary telephone responsibility. Candidates must be faithful and actively practicing Roman Catholics. Please send resume, cover letter, and at least five references with contact email addresses to Stephen Koplyay, SPHR at [email protected], or fax to 859/392-1589.
Laura Keener, Editor.
As the 2019-2020 school year comes to a close, it is safe to say that the Class of 2020 will have experienced the end of their senior year and graduation in ways that no one could have predicted. The COVID-19 pandemic had leaders around the world enacting sweeping regulations in desperate attempts to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus and to save lives. With each passing day churches, schools, businesses were told to close their doors to in-person interaction and to find new ways — virtual or contact-less ways — to conduct business, to learn and to worship.
As the seniors packed their school bags March 13, for what was anticipated to be two weeks of Non-Traditional Instruction (NTI), they undoubtedly could not have known or even imagined that this was going to be their “last time” — their last time in their school, their last time with their teachers, their last time with each other.
But it was also a time for some firsts. Students and teachers, together, with little time to prepare, for the first time moved in-classroom instruction to a variety of digital platforms. In the Diocese of Covington, teachers reported that students remained engaged and completed their assignments, indicative of the teachers, students and parents determination and dedication to their education.
The Class of 2020 is the first to have caps and gowns distributed and diplomas picked up in a parade-like caravan or delivered directly to their door with their teachers cheering from sidewalks. They are the first class to experience a virtual graduation, with each school imagining what that would look like. Then realizing what was imagined through the cooperation of administrators, parents and students, all working together, sharing photos and videos and, most of all, heartfelt sentiments that were pieced together and shared online.
And, in many ways, the virus that threatened to keep people apart has brought the seniors together. The Class of 2020 is the first class in the diocese to begin its graduations together with one Baccalaureate Mass celebrated by the bishop.
“Your graduation this year is not what you imagined and not what I imagined for you but that doesn’t diminish you and it doesn’t diminish your accomplishments,” said Bishop Roger Foys in his homily, May 18, at the Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption.
For the Baccalaureate Mass the cathedral church was empty except for Bishop Foys, Father Daniel Schomaker, vicar general, Father Joseph Shelton, administrative assistant to the Bishop and the seven high school pastoral administrators concelebrating. The seniors, their teachers, parents, families and friends participated by watching the live stream on the Cathedral’s website.
“You have been in a Catholic school and you have heard me say many, many, many times that there are alternatives to Catholic schools but there are no substitutes … A Catholic school is about developing a way of life. If we are going to develop a way of life that is going to be meaningful, although challenging, then we have to hear, receive and act upon the word of God.”
Reflecting on the second reading, Bishop Foys encouraged the graduates to be agents of change.
“Paul says to the early Christians, ‘Do not conform yourselves to this age but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect.’ It’s easy to conform ourselves to any age of the world, it’s easy to go along with the flow, there is absolutely no challenge in that,” Bishop Foys said. “Our faith challenges us and it calls us to challenge others … You can transform the world, you can make a difference … You can be that agent of transformation in a world that has lost its way.”
Bishop Foys acknowledged that life isn’t always easy; the end of their senior year has surely taught them that. But he encouraged the graduates to heed the words of St. Paul.
“Paul says, rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, persevere in prayer. I could not give you seniors any better advice than that,” he said.
Bishop Foys acknowledged that due to the pandemic many people have had to sacrifice in many ways — healthcare workers risking their lives in caring for the sick, workers whose work was deemed non-essential have lost income in order to protect others and family members were unable to care for their loved ones as they died.
“You, yourself, have looked forward to your graduation and have had such great enthusiasm for your final days of your high school career — prom night, senior night, awards banquets, graduation, baccalaureate Mass — we are aware of your pain and your sacrifice. We’ve all had affliction and sacrifice, but we can endure because we rejoice in hope. In the final analysis what matters most is Jesus Christ, our salvation.
“So as you celebrate this accomplishment, the end of your high school career and the beginning of whatever is to come next, be young men and young women who rejoice in hope, who can endure affliction because you have hope, and who never stop praying. God will bless you for that,” he said.
Bishop Foys ended his homily with words of congratulations.
“My congratulations to all of you. I wish you well and pray that you will have a bright future,” he said.
The baccalaureate Mass as well as the virtual graduations of all nine high schools are available for viewing here.
Laura Keener, Editor.
After 62 days (since March 20), public celebration of the Mass resumed, May 20, in the Diocese of Covington. It was a day long anticipated by Bishop Roger Foys, the priests of the diocese and the lay faithful.
“I’ve heard from the priests that there is anywhere from 10 percent to 50 percent of their normal congregations,” said Bishop Foys, May 27, in an interview about the first weekday and weekend Masses. “The people who are there are very happy that the Mass is available. There are still some people who are nervous and I certainly understand that, especially people who are at high risk.”
For anyone who has underlying health conditions or falls into the high risk categories of developing complications from the coronavirus or anyone who feels nervous about venturing out in public, Bishop Foys has extended the dispensation from the Sunday obligation of attending Mass. Many parishes, including the Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption, are still live streaming Mass so that those at home can join spiritually with their parish.
Bishop Foys did caution, as did Pope Francis, that people not get the misconception that the live stream somehow replaces the in-person, public celebration of the Mass, especially in the long term.
“The Mass is more than just a church service. We have the Eucharist and the Eucharist is what sustains us,” said Bishop Foys. “Part of the Eucharist is coming together as a community — our faith calls us to that. Jesus instituted the Eucharist at the Last Supper with his apostles; he didn’t just do it on his own somewhere. The whole notion of a parish and parish life is bringing people together because, certainly, the Eucharist is the body and blood of Christ but the gathered community is also the body of Christ. It’s very important for us to come together and worship together — the Eucharist is what binds us together.”
Before public Masses resumed, a list of protocols developed by Bishop Foys and a task force of about ten Curia members was shared and discussed with diocesan consultors, deans and priests. After the discussions, adjustments to the protocols were made. On May 12, Bishop Foys promulgated the protocols, making them particular law for the Diocese of Covington. The complete list protocols is available on the diocesan website, www.covdio.org. As pastors opened the church doors, parishioners were asked to assist their priests in implementing the protocols.
Some highlights of the protocols are:
— Those that are sick should refrain from attending for 14 days from when symptoms began.
— Masses will be celebrated with a 33 percent capacity reduction.
— Social distancing is required; pews are marked so that parishioners maintain six-feet spacing from each other.
— Face coverings are encouraged for all and required for ushers and extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion.
— Distribution of Holy Communion will be under one species, the Body of Christ.
— Churches will be cleaned and sanitized after every Mass.
“The people have been very cooperative, especially in terms of sanitizing the pews after Mass and not gathering in groups after Mass. I haven’t heard any glaring complaints,” said Bishop Foys. “I wish more people would wear masks at Mass; we advise that but do not mandate that.”
When asked what celebrating Mass under the new protocols looks like from the celebrant’s point of view Bishop Foys said, “It’s strange to see very small crowds spread out over the entire church.” But, he said, it looks to him like the social distancing protocols should offer parishioners a safe place to worship.
Bishop Foys and the priests are hopeful that in the coming days, as more is learned on how effective the protocols are working, more of the lay faithful will physically make their way back to Mass.
“I don’t fault people (for being cautious). I think it is going to take awhile,” Bishop Foys said. “For eight weeks we have been cautioned to be careful and we know the virus is very contagious, so it will take awhile for us to get used to that. There is a hesitancy, which we can appreciate and we have to support.”
Bishop Foys said that after one more week of experience in celebrating both weekday and weekend Masses, he, his staff and the priests will review the protocols in light of that experience.
“If we need to change any of the protocols, we will do that,” he said.
Allegra Thatcher, Assistant Editor.
Religious communities in the Diocese of Covington are uniting to bring relief to local Latino communities through outreach. Sisters from five congregations are assembling care packages to give out to those in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Divine Providence Sister Kay Kramer served as the bridge to unite the goals of the various congregations and St. Elizabeth Healthcare into this project. Sister Kay, a nurse midwife and family nurse practitioner at St. Elizabeth, reached out to her provincial superior, Divine Providence Sister Barbara Roe. Sister Barbara in turn contacted the superiors of the Sisters of Notre Dame, the Benedictine Sisters of St. Walburg Monastery, the Sisters of St. Joseph the Worker and the Congregation of the Passion of Jesus Christ.
“At St. Elizabeth we have created a Latino COVID-19 Crisis Team to try to improve outreach to Latinos in our area who are disproportionately impacted by coronavirus,” said Sister Kay. “So one of the things we thought might be helpful was these care packages.”
The packages include supplies both bought by the sisters and provided by the hospital: Clorox wipes, hand sanitizer, bars of soap, masks, gloves, dish soap, an instruction sheet in Spanish and a prayer card in Spanish. The various religious orders are listed on the back of the prayer card to remind recipients that the sisters are praying for them.
“It’s a way to be in solidarity with them and remind them that we are united with them in prayer,” Sister Kay said.
She said the response from the congregations was wonderful. “It was an issue of who was going to do this, and I thought, well this is definitely something the sisters can do. … They all were right away willing to help in any way.”
Any extra money raised in the process of making the care packages will be used toward helping to provide groceries to Latino families who are impacted by the virus.
Sister Kay said that the COVID-19 virus is impacting Guatemalan and Mexican families in the Covington, Newport and Florence communities especially harshly.
“We have such long standing social and health inequities for the immigrant community, so the virus impacting them is not really a surprise,” she said. “This is just bringing it all to a head, these issues that we’ve been trying to work with for so long.”
St. Elizabeth is also reaching out to communities with large Latino populations, such as St. Anthony Parish, Taylor Mill, and Cristo Rey Parish, Florence, to get information about the virus to them in brochures, as well as donations of soap and household items from Matthew 25 Ministries.
“I think it’s something that our local Church needs to know about,” said Sister Kay.
She’s also grateful for the opportunity to give her fellow religious communities a chance to express their faith through actions.
“For us as religious communities, it’s really a way of living out not just the missions of our religious orders but also living out Catholic social teaching in a very direct and concrete way,” she said. “Catholic social teaching is built on a foundation of respect and belief in the dignity of the human person, so by providing these care packages, it’s a very concrete way to express our commitment to that teaching.”
Holy Cross High School is seeking a full time Spanish Teacher for the 2020-21 school year. The ideal candidate would be an experienced teacher, have a bachelor’s degree, and be certified by the State of Kentucky to teach Spanish. Please send cover letter and resume to Principal Mike Holtz – subject Spanish Position at [email protected]
Saint Agnes School, a K-8 school in Fort Wright, Kentucky is currently seeking a first grade teacher for the 2020-2021 school year. This individual is responsible for creating engaging and interactive lessons that can be differentiated in order to reach all learners. Other beneficial attributes include strong classroom management, integration of technology, and a willingness to collaborate. This is a full-time, contracted teaching position. Interested candidates should submit a cover letter, resume, and references to Principal Erin Redleski at [email protected].
Holy Family School, in Covington Ky, is currently seeking a Language Arts/History/Religion teacher for the 2020-2021 school year. Candidate will teach a combined 5th and 6th grade class and a combined 7th and 8th grade class. Beneficial attributes are strong classroom management, ability to differentiate instruction, collaboration, communication, and love of teaching. If interested please submit a cover letter, resume, and references to Beth Vieth at [email protected]
St. Thomas School, in Fort Thomas, is seeking a full time 3rd Grade Homeroom teacher for the 2020-2021 school year. Please submit cover letter, resume and references to Fr. Ross Kelsch at [email protected].
Laura Keener, Editor.
Sacrifice, silence, stability — these three words might not usually come to mind if a person were asked to describe an ordination to the sacred priesthood. They were, however, prominent in ways both visible and hidden, May 16, at the ordination of Father Jordan Hainsey and his Mass of Thanksgiving, May 17.
The Cathedral was empty except for the ordinand’s parents — Raymond and Denise Hainsey — the celebrant, Bishop Roger Foys, and those concelebrating or assisting: Father Stephen Bankemper, Father Aron Maghsoudi, Father Ryan Maher, Father Daniel Schomaker, Deacon Joseph Rielage and Devin Heffernan. The ordination was taking place during a pandemic — a time when people could not gather — not even the Bishop’s Choir. And it was raining. Yet, still, the atmosphere inside the Cathedral was one of anticipation and joy.
“This is not an ordinary day and this is not an ordinary time. What matters is that the Church goes on,” said Bishop Foys in his homily. “Deacon Jordan’s ordination is not diminished by the times in which we live. The fact of the matter is no matter the weather, no matter what the situation is, no matter the guidelines and the restrictions, no matter what is going on outside of us, what is important is what’s going on inside of us — inside our hearts and especially inside Deacon Jordan’s heart. What is going on is that this young man is committing himself for the rest of his life to serve the Lord and the Lord’s people as a priest. It is not only significant — it is sacred.”
Reflecting on the Gospel passage where Jesus tells his disciples “you are the salt of the earth,” and “you are the light of the world,” Bishop Foys said that these are two powerful images.
“To be salt is to be a preservative, to be that which keeps things — people —from going bad. You are the light of the world to be seen by people, to be a guide, to be a warning,” he said.
Bishop Foys said that all Christians are called to be salt and light but the call especially pertains to those who are called to take up the vocation of priesthood.
“Deacon Jordan has been called to be salt and to be light, to do everything he can to preserve God’s people and to preserve everything that is in them that is good. To be their light, to be a guide,” Bishop Foys said.
Bishop Foys thanked Deacon Jordan for listening to the Lord and answering the Lord’s call to priesthood. He was also grateful for Deacon Jordan’s commitment in the face of the sacrifices demanded by the pandemic’s restrictions on gatherings.
“His willingness to be ordained during this time and in this manner is a willingness to embrace his vocation and to begin by sacrifice,” Bishop Foys said. “We are all called, but especially those called to priesthood, to live lives of sacrifice.”
Bishop Foys ended his homily thanking God and asking for his grace. “Deacon Jordan, we pray for you today as we welcome you to the order of presbyter of this holy Church. We pray that this beginning will be a time of new grace for you and that this grace will carry you throughout your entire life as a priest.”
At his Mass of Thanksgiving, Father Hainsey shared that underneath the grandeur of the ordination ceremony, the seeds of his vocation to the priesthood can be found in the faithful witness of a simple man — Mick Marvich. Mr. Marvich was Father Hainsey’s uncle and sponsor when he came into the Church in 2006.
Father Aron Maghsoudi, pastor, Our Lady Queen of Angels Parish, Central City, and All Saints Parish, Boswell, Penn., was the homilist at Father Hainsey’s first Mass. He was also the pastor at St. Joseph Parish, Williamsburg, Penn., where Mr. Marvich was a member. Even in his late years Mr. Marvich’s faith and dedication to his parish — performing routine custodial duties — helped form Father Hainsey, Father Maghsoudi said.
“He lived a very simple life,” Father Maghsoudi said about Mr. Marvich. “There will never probably be a monument dedicated to him and very few accolades afforded him. But it is a simplicity that goes beyond the complexities of life; that in simple faith I offer my best,” he said.
Father Maghsoudi also suggested that the unusual quietness of Father Hainsey’s ordination and the silent works of his uncle offer a catechesis on the power of silence.
“In the silence there are great and profound things that happen. Things that are eternally significant take place even when others fail to notice,” he said. “When Father Jordan was conformed to Christ in a unique and powerful way in the sacrament of Holy Orders yesterday, that act that defines the sacrament — that most ancient of gestures, the laying on of hands — an eschatological change was given, but it was given in silence … In the silence and simplicity of what we celebrate today and what we saw transpire yesterday there is a silent, powerful, life-changing reality, a configuring to Christ.”
Father Maghsoudi encouraged Father Hainsey to “look to the Cross” as he faces the challenges of priesthood.
“Our stability comes from that of the Cross. As the world turns the Cross stands still, that’s where we find our stability, that’s where we find our assurance, that’s where life makes sense,” he said.
In his ordination program Father Hainsey thanked the people who have supported him and recognized the sacrifice that everyone is making in not being able to gather for Mass and the sacraments by offering encouragement.
“Amidst these days of the coronavirus, it has been particularly painful for me and fellow clergy not to greet and be with so many of you for liturgies and Holy Mass,” Father Hainsey wrote. “The same sort of void is felt today as I am ordained to the priesthood in the absence of you and so many family and friends. But for us to sorrow in this reality would be to let the evil one win. Rather, we must ‘run the race,’ as St. Paul would say, and celebrate with great joy, as one family, the fact that the Line of Melchizedek — the priesthood of Jesus Christ — is continuing today despite the hardships that have been thrown at the Church in these past many weeks. This is how we can continue to keep our eyes fixed on Him.
“So many men and women, too numerous to count, have spurred on my vocation throughout my life by their example, helping to till the soil in which God plants the vocation. For that, I will be forever grateful,” he said.
Diocese of Covington