Greetings from St. Columban Catholic Church

May 19, 2019 - Last weekend, I spoke about the importance of having a relationship with our spiritual mother Mary. From the cross Jesus willed that it be so when He said to the apostle "Behold, thy mother." (John 19) The month of May has long been dedicated to honoring the Blessed Virgin Mary. I encourage you then to build up your relationship with your heavenly mother this month, especially through a prayer that may or may not be familiar to you. The Memorare (Latin for 'remember') is a prayer that reminds us that we have a wonderful advocate and protector in the mother of our Lord. In our prayers to her we honor and worship her Son, who is more than happy to listen to His mother's pleas on our behalf. The Memorare, printed below, invites us to ask the Blessed Mother for her assistance and her grace, especially when we feel most troubled in our daily lives. As the great St. Louis De Montfort once put it, by asking Mary to approach Him with and for us "we are practicing humility, something which always gladdens the heart of God!" Take the time to memorize this prayer and recite it often.

The Memorare - Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession was left unaided. Inspired with this confidence, I fly to thee, O Virgin of virgins, my Mother; to thee do I come; before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy clemency hear and answer me. Amen.

Scripture Readings for Fifth Sunday of Easter - Acts of the Apostles14:21-27 Revelation 21:1-5a John 13:31-33a, 34-35

May 12, 2019 - As we celebrate our mothers this weekend, I want to encourage you to also remember the love and care our heavenly mother Mary has for us. In the Gospel of John we find Mary at Calvary at the foot of the Cross with John, the beloved disciple. John tells us, "When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, 'Woman, behold your son.' Then he said to the disciple, 'Behold your mother.'" (John 19: 26-27). Throughout the Church's history, numerous popes, theologians, and writers have confirmed their belief that here John is symbolic of all humanity. In other words, that Jesus from the Cross gave His Mother to every human person for all time. A mother not only gives birth, but she also is given by God so that she might nurture, feed, teach, guide, and protect her child. God entrusts her with these tasks. In the human family, a mother is not optional. So too, in the spiritual family of the Mystical Body of Christ, Mary, our Mother is not optional. Because we are her spiritual children, Mary looks tenderly on us and after us with a love so profound that we are moved to plead, "Pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen."

Scripture Readings for Fourth Sunday of Easter - Acts of the Apostles13:14, 43-52 Revelation 7:9, 14b-17 John 10:27-30

May 5, 2019 - Our children make their First Communion this weekend at the 10AM Mass. Consider 5 effects reception of the Eucharist has within us. 1 We become more united with Christ - What does it even mean to be more united with Jesus? A couple things. First, it means that we take our seat right alongside the original apostles and partake of the same meal received in the Last Supper. Secondly, there is a special grace that we receive by way of the Eucharist; a certain sensitivity, if you will, to the urgings of the Holy Spirit that directs us towards our life's vocation and to the very longings of Jesus' heart and works with sanctifying grace. 2 We are separated from our sinfulness. While the Eucharist does not achieve reconciliation for our grave (mortal) sins in the sacramental sense it certainly drives a wedge between us and our concupiscent nature; our tendency towards what is sinful. It is often said that the Body, Blood Soul, and Divinity that we partake of indeed strengthens us for the spiritual battle we must endure all the days of our earthly life. 3 Our venial sins are wiped away. Most commonly, venial sins represent disordered attachments to anything that might take precedent over Christ in our lives; it is a small problem that can and will grow if we neglect it. By uniting us, in a real way, to Christ and through the driving of that wedge between us and our tendency to sin, the Eucharist actually strengthens our charity that becomes weakened through the rigors of daily life. 4 Our communion with other Christians is strengthened. In every Eucharistic celebration Christ is fully and totally present. From this understanding we now know that when you receive from the table of the Lord and your friends in Omaha receive in their parish as well, the same Christ has been physically assimilated into your flesh and theirs. We gather from this truth a sense of fraternal bonding that takes root between all the faithful. 5 We are reminded of those less fortunate than us. Time and time again we read that Christ emptied himself and took on the form of a servant. The King of Kings and Lord of Lords humbled himself and became man like you and me in all except sin. Eucharist is a reminder of that humility; it is a reminder that the Son of Man became the object of sacrifice for our sinfulness and gave himself up to death on a cross! 

Scripture Readings for Third Sunday of Easter - Acts of the Apostles5:27-32,40b-41 Revelation 5:11-14 John 21:1-19

April 28, 2019 - Divine Mercy Sunday: A Reflection on Mercy - A TIME magazine issue in 1984 presented a startling cover. It pictured a prison cell where two men sat on metal folding chairs. The young man wore a black turtleneck sweater, blue jeans and white running shoes. The older man was dressed in a white robe and had a white skullcap on his head. They sat facing one another, up close and personal. They spoke quietly so as to keep others from hearing the conversation. The young man was Mehmet Ali Agca, the pope's attempted assassin; the other man was Pope John Paul II, the intended victim. The pope held the hand that had held the gun whose bullet tore into the pope's body. In the cell, unseen in the picture, were the pope's secretary and two security agents along with a still photographer and videographer. John Paul wanted this scene to be shown around a world filled with nuclear arsenals and unforgiving hatreds. The Church has always used paintings, sculpture, and architecture to communicate spiritual meanings. This was a living icon of mercy. The Church was celebrating the 1,950th anniversary of Christ's death and Christian redemption. The pope had been preaching forgiveness and reconciliation constantly. His deed with Ali Agca spoke a thousand words. John Paul's forgiveness was deeply Christian. He embraced his enemy and pardoned him. At the end of their 20-minute meeting, Ali Agca raised the pope's hand to his forehead as a sign of respect. John Paul shook Ali Agca's hand tenderly. When the pope left the cell he said, "What we talked about must remain a secret between us. I spoke to him as a brother whom I have pardoned and who has my complete trust." This is an example of God's divine mercy, the same divine mercy whose message Saint Faustina witnessed.

Scripture Readings for Divine Mercy Sunday: Acts of the Apostles 5:12-16 Revelations 1:9-11a, 12-13, 17-19 John 20:19-31

April 21, 2019 - Happy Easter to you and yours! As we celebrate the salvation, glory, and hope that Christ has won for us I want to remind you of the feast we mark next Sunday. The Feast of Divine Mercy appropriately follows the Easter holy day as a sign of the fruits of God's salvation extended to us sinners. Jesus' apparition to St. Faustina in the 1940's serves as renewal of His covenant of salvation with His people and a specific means to invite his love and mercy into our lives so that we may bring these to others. He said to her: "On that day the very depths of My tender mercy are open. The soul that will go to Confession [beforehand] and receive Holy Communion [on that day] shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment." (Diary 699) This is spiritually a clean slate that is extended to us, a remission of any temporal punishment (ie time in Purgatory) that a soul may have had to that point. Cardinal Macharski, the Archbishop of St. Faustina's own archdiocese of Krakow, Poland, wrote a pastoral letter to all his priests on January 30, 1985, on how to prepare for and celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday. In it he said that all of Lent should be a preparation to celebrate Easter and Divine Mercy Sunday worthily. The Sacrament of Reconciliation should be received sometime in Lent. We go to Confession with the intention of repentance and to amend our lives, and we should live in such a way as to be worthy to receive Holy Eucharist. 
These commands of Christ are not mere hoops to jump through. They rather encourage us to live a life of charity and mercy which in turn bring about unity with God and holiness to our life. We will pray the Chaplet of Mercy, the prayer which Jesus gave St. Faustina, at all Masses next weekend. "The graces of My mercy are drawn by means of one vessel only, and that is trust. The more a soul trusts, the more it will receive." (Diary 1578)

Scripture Readings for Easter Sunday - Acts of the Apostles 10:34a, 37-43 Colossians 3:1-4 John 20:1-9

April 14, 2019 - We begin Holy Week on Sunday as we recall the Lord's entrance into Jerusalem. The liturgy during this week helps us to more intimately pause and reflect upon the stages of our Lord's passion and death. While none of these days are holy days of obligation, I would encourage to participate in as many of the liturgies as you can. A reminder that Good Friday is a day of fasting and of abstaining from meat. Holy Thursday: Mass at 6pm. Confessions beginning at 5:15pm. Good Friday: Service at 3pm. Confessions beginning at 2:15pm. Holy Saturday: Mass at 8pm. No confessions unless by appointment. Easter: Masses at 8am and 10am. Confessions half an hour before each Mass.

Scripture Readings for Palm Sunday - Isaiah 50:4-7 Philippians 2:6-11 Luke 22:14-23:56

April 7, 2019 - This week, I share the following with you. A letter we received from the Office of the Basilian Fathers Missions regarding this weekend's diocesan assigned Mission Appeal Weekend: At the invitation of the Bishop, Most Rev. James V. Johnston, and the Diocese of Kansas City - St. Joseph Mission Office, the Basilian Fathers Missions are grateful to Father Benjamin Kneib and the parishioners of St. Columban for hosting Rev. Vincent Dulock, CSB on Saturday, April 6th and Sunday April 7th, 2019. Father Vince is the appointed director of the Basilian Fathers Missions; please visit to hear his appeal for the support of the Basilian Fathers' work in Mexico and Colombia. Funds support over 1000 student tuitions at INSA in Cali, Colombia - a Basilian institution ranked among the top 40 schools in the country. Along with your help, the Basilian Fathers Missions also work to feed, cloth, teach, and evangelize in Mexico, improving the lives of thousands living in San Lorenzo and Mexico City.

Scripture Readings for the Fifth Sunday of Lent - Isaiah 43:16-21 Philippians 3:8-14 John 8:1-11

March 31, 2019 - Lent provides us opportunities to receive special helps from God including indulgences which remove all or part of the time a soul would potentially have to spend in purgatory up to that point. The following is an indulgenced act. 

Prayer Before a Crucifix
Look down upon me, good and gentle Jesus
while before Your face I humbly kneel and,
with burning soul,
pray and beseech You
to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments
of faith, hope, and charity;
true contrition for my sins,
and a firm purpose of amendment.

While I contemplate,
with great love and tender pity,
Your five most precious wounds,
pondering over them within me
and calling to mind the words which David,
Your prophet, said to You, my Jesus:
"They have pierced My hands and My feet,
they have numbered all My bones."

Say Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be for the Catholic Church and the intentions of the Holy Father. A plenary indulgence, under the usual conditions, may be gained by those who shall say this prayer with devotion before an image of our crucified Redeemer.

Usual conditions to obtain a plenary indulgence are the following:

  • Perform the indulgenced action
  • Sacramentally confess your sins within 20 days of performing the indulgenced action.
  • Receive Holy Communion
  • Pray for the intentions of the Holy Father.
  • Possess the interior disposition of complete rejection and detachment from sin, even venial sin. (If this is lacking the indulgence becomes partial)

Scripture Readings for the Fourth Sunday of Lent - Joshua 5:9a, 10-12 2 Corinthians 5:17-21 Luke 15:1-3, 11-32

March 24, 2019 - The Catholic Cemetery Tradition - Catholic cemeteries trace their roots back to the Jewish practice of providing separate burial grounds for community members. The early Christians continued this practice, both because it was a familiar tradition, and also because it was a statement of faith about the dignity of the human body in death and the reality of Jesus' resurrection. At death we focus on Baptism and the body as a temple of the Holy Spirit, nourished at the Eucharistic table. Rooted in that recognition, we remember our beloved and give thanks for the life we shared. When we visit the burial sites of our loved ones, we experience the same Eucharistic dynamic. Oftentimes we recognize the need for reconciliation with our beloved dead and prayer at the cemetery is an effective approach toward healing. Catholic cemeteries manifest the "now/not yet" status of the Kingdom of God. We are now a people of history, a people redeemed but still in pain and sorrow. This is why we pray as Jesus did, "Thy Kingdom come..." We are a people who visit our cemeteries to be reminded our history, our Catholic beliefs and practices, and our parish community/family. We, as a community, profess our beliefs and value system... even in the silence of the grave. In the Catholic parish cemetery, our deceased relatives and friends are laid to rest among members of the same faith who preceded them into eternal life and professed the same sure conviction that one day the body will be reunited with the soul in glory to be with the Risen Lord. Then the Kingdom of God will be fully realized. Painful as it might be, family and friends are encouraged to return to the burial places to find there, in the presence of those mortal remains, people joined with the Communion of Saints. The church invites you to unite in prayer for their eternal rest. In the stillness of the cemetery, may you connect with that great prayer of the early Church, "Marana tha!" "Lord Jesus, come!" --taken from The Catholic Parish Cemetery Newsletter, Vol 1 Issue 3, January 2019.

St. Columban Parish has, since its founding, operated its own Catholic cemetery so its parishioners have a place to be buried in consecrated ground. It is our responsibility to support it financially so that it is continually maintained and cared for. A few ways that you can do this is by remembering the cemetery in your will and as memorials at your funeral. The cost of our lots is kept extremely low for our parishioners so we depend on your donations.

Scripture Readings for the Third Sunday of Lent - Exodus 3:1-8a, 13-15 1 Corinthians 10:1-6, 10-12 Luke 13:1-9

March 17, 2019 - March the 19th is the solemnity of St. Joseph. St. Joseph is the patron of the Universal Church because of his guardianship and fostering the Holy Family. We have known the spiritual power of this great saint recently in the projects we have accomplished through his intercession. In gratitude a symbol of St. Joseph (the letters S and J intertwined with a lily sprout) was included on the walls of the sanctuary. As an example for men in particular, Joseph is a loving husband and father, a man who is always desiring to do the will of God in his life and in his family, a man who is courageous and does what he must to protect his family from harm, and a man of humility, purity and truth. On his feast then in particular we give thanks for this great steward of God. May he serve as an example to men everywhere of how to live a life of faith and virtue. Great and powerful St. Joseph, pray for us!

Scripture Readings for the Second Sunday of Lent - Genesis 15:5-12, 17-18 Philippians 3:17-4:1 Luke 9:28b-36

March 10, 2019 - As we begin the Lenten season, our gospel provides us a familiar basis for the pattern of our observances, namely of Jesus spent 40 days fasting and praying while being tempted by the devil in the desert prior to His public ministry beginning. Jesus consciously takes the time to raise His heart and mind to God in a more intense way. It reminds us likewise that we always should pray for the help and guidance of God in our daily life and particularly in moments of temptation. In the arena of temptation, self mastery is key. Because the wants of the body can become too domineering or take too much control over our life, we fast and abstain as a means of breaking that cycle. Thereby other deeper, lasting desires can emerge like a more pure love of God and a desire to serve Him in this life and the next. The mountain in the Judean desert where Jesus is said to have been tempted is located near the city of Jericho. Because of what happened there, it is called Mt. Temptation.

There will be no daily Mass while Father is in the Holy Land March 11-23. In case of a sacramental emergency while Father is away from the parish, please contact Fr. Drew at St. Joseph's in Trenton (816-810-5035).

Scripture Readings for the First Sunday of Lent - Deuteronomy 26:4-10 Romans 10:8-13 Luke 4:1-13

March 3, 2019 - Safe Haven Sunday - This week you will have the opportunity to receive information regarding how you might better protect your children and your family from the dangers of pervasive sexual material that is common today and often comes from places we least expect. As an aid in accomplishing this you are invited to take home with you the booklet Equipped which is available at the back of church. As a practical companion to Equipped you may also text the word Secure to 6866 and receive email information over a course of 7 days that will detail the safeguards out there to protect yourself from digital exposure and how to have age appropriate conversations with children. You may still participate in the 7 day challenge even without the Equipped booklet.

Lent - Last weekend I shared a format for practicing Lent that I am going to follow this year. For the sake of review, I encouraged you to work on eradicating one specific sin, to add in one spiritual or charitable practice, and to give up one thing. Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are obligatory days of fasting and abstinence from meat for Catholics. In addition, Fridays during Lent are obligatory days of abstinence. For members of the Latin Catholic Church, the norms on fasting are obligatory from age 18 until age 59. When fasting, a person is permitted to eat one full meal, as well as two smaller meals that together are not equal to a full meal. The norms concerning abstinence from meat are binding upon members of the Latin Catholic Church from age 14 onwards. Although these norms are binding on individuals of a certain age in usual circumstances, it is a very praiseworthy practice that they would be followed by those outside the age parameters as well with the appropriate discretion.

Prayer of Thanksgiving - Oh St. Joseph, Patron of the universal Church, we have placed in you all our interests and desires. We give thanks to you for your powerful intercession and for obtaining for us from your Divine Son all the blessings needed to successfully complete the restoration of our parish. St. Columban, our patron, obtain for us the same wisdom, faith and love of God by which you overcame the obstacles that beset your path. Help us to live lives which glorify God; that when our pilgrimage is over, we may share with you and all the saint in the joy of our heavenly home. Amen.

Scripture Readings for the Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Sirach 27:4-7 1Corinthians 15:54-58 Luke 6:39-45

February 24, 2019 - Safe Haven Sunday: Equipping the Family, Safeguarding Children - Friends, next weekend we will be participating in a diocesan initiative called Safe Haven Sunday. This initiative is meant to directly address the harms of pornography and to provide resources to support and protect individuals, marriages, and families in overcoming pornography and making their homes safe. The family home is to be a safe haven. But the inappropriate use of technology in the home deprives it of this role and is one of the greatest threats to the sanctity of marriages and families today. Studies indicate that 93% of boys and 62% of girls were exposed to pornography before the age of 18. 68% of men and 18% of women said they used pornography at least once every week. Another 17% of men and another 30% of women said they used pornography 1-2 times per month. 56% of divorce involves one party having "an obsessive interest in pornographic websites." 71% of teens have done something to hide what they do online from their parents. Pornography and other online threats are often one click away, and parents can feel overwhelmed with not knowing how to best protect their children or themselves in our fast-paced digital world. Safe Haven Sunday will provide access to practical resources that any caring adult can use to protect themselves and our young people from online risks. To learn more, please visit

Scripture Readings for the Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time - 1 Samuel 26:2, 7-9, 12-13, 22-23 1Corinthians 15:45-49 Luke 6:27-38

February 17, 2019 - Recently, we have heard in the gospels that Jesus is ministering in His home region of Galilee in the north. This past Sunday, we found Jesus on the shores of the Sea of Galilee or Lake Gennesaret it was called. The picture shown here is from the north end of the Sea of Galilee looking south down the length of the sea. The Sea is surrounded by low mountains and high hills. The boat shown here is modeled off the common fishing vessel at the time of Christ. For this reason it is usually refereed to today as a "Jesus boat." The boat of Simon and Andrew which Jesus stepped into would have had a small sail and less overhead covering than the one pictured does but otherwise looked very similar.

Scripture Readings for the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Jeremiah 17:5-8 1Corinthians 15:12, 16-20 Luke 6:17, 20-26

February 10, 2019 - This Tuesday, our parish will be visited by a traveling image of Our Lady, Help of Persecuted Christians, hosted by the Knights of Columbus. Each Knights of Columbus jurisdiction receives several Marian images which serve as the centerpieces for prayer services conducted in churches and council meeting places throughout the Order for the duration of the annual Marian Prayer Program. A Marian prayer service with the image will be held after the 6pm Mass on Tuesday the 12, which is intended to raise awareness of the plight of Christians persecuted for their faith and to stand in prayerful solidarity with them. All are welcome and encouraged to attend.

Scripture Readings for the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Isaiah 6:1-2a, 3-8; I Corinthians 15:1-11; Luke 5:1-11

February 3, 2019 - February 3rd is the feast of St. Blaise who was a 4th century bishop and martyr. Before he was a bishop, he trained as a doctor. According to the story of his life, he was arrested by the local governor who was intent on making Blaise deny his Christian faith. As he was being led to prison, a woman whose son had a fish bone lodged in his throat brought him to Blaise who miraculously healed him. In gratitude, this woman later brought candles to his dark cell. This miracle and the woman's gift of candles have contributed to the practice of blessing throats on Blaise's feastday. I will offer a blessing of throats after each of the weekend Masses. Blaise was ultimately tortured and died a martyr. He is the patron saint of throat ailments, wild animals, and wool workers.

Scripture Readings for the Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Jeremiah 1:4-5, 17-19; 1Corinthians 12:31-13:13; Luke 4:21-30

January 27, 2019 - In this week's gospel, we hear of Jesus returning to His hometown of Nazareth in Galilee. Nazareth today is a bustling city with a population of 75,000 people. In the time of Jesus many of the people lived in cave houses, including the Holy Family. The older city is still relatively well preserved. Aside from the large basilica built on top of the site of the annunciation there is also a nearby church built over the carpentry shop of St. Joseph which is located underneath in the caves.

Scripture Readings for the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time - Nehemiah 8:1-4a, 5-6, 8-10 1Corinthians 12:12-30; Luke 1:1-4, 4:14-21

January 20, 2019 - This week, our nation marks the anniversary of the Supreme Court decisions which permitted legal abortions. The over 56 million abortions since the 1973 decisions of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton reflect with heartbreaking magnitude what Pope Francis means by a "throwaway culture." However, we have great trust in God's providence. We are reminded time and again in Scripture to seek the Lord's help; and as people of faith, we believe that our prayers are heard. January 22, the anniversary of the Supreme Court verdict, is designated as a particular day of prayer and penance, called the "Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children". In all the Dioceses of the United States of America, January 22 is to be observed as a particular day of prayer for the full restoration of the legal guarantee of the right to life and of penance for violations to the dignity of the human person committed through acts of abortion. As individuals, we are called to observe this day through the penitential practices of prayer, fasting and/or giving alms. I would encourage you to use the following prayer: Loving God, I thank you for the gift of life you gave and continue to give to me and to all of us. Merciful God, I ask your pardon and forgiveness for my own failure and the failure of all people to respect and foster all forms of life in our universe. Gracious God, I pray that with your grace, I and all people will reverence, protect, and promote all life and that we will be especially sensitive to the life of the unborn, the abused, neglected, disabled, and the elderly. I pray, too, that all who make decisions about life in any form will do so with wisdom, love, and courage. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Scripture Readings for the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time - Isaiah 62:1-5; 1Corinthians 12:4-11; John 2:1-11

January 13, 2019 - Today's Feast of the Baptism of the Lord marks the conclusion of the Christmas Season and the beginning of Ordinary Time. It's a feast of transition from Jesus' hidden life to that of His public ministry. It also echoes the theme of the Epiphany in that the Baptism of the Lord is another manifestation announcing Jesus' divinity to all of His first followers and to the disciples of John the Baptist. First of all, it needs to be pointed out that Jesus did not need the baptism of John. John was baptizing as a call to and sign of interior repentance. Jesus had no need to repent. But nonetheless, He comes to John. By accepting the baptism of John, Jesus affirms all that John has said and done and affirms his sacred role of preparing the way for Jesus. When Jesus entered the waters of baptism, He was not baptized by the waters; rather, His Baptism made the future sacrament of baptism holy. By His humble example of participation, He makes holy and gives power to what we also participate in through the sacrament.

Scripture Readings for the Feast of The Baptism of The Lord - Isaiah 40:1-5, 9-11; Titus 2:11-14, 3:4-7; Luke 3:15-16, 21-22

January 6, 2019 - It is a long-standing Catholic tradition at Epiphany to ask God's blessings on our homes. Because the Wise Men were visitors of the Christ Child in His home, we ask God's assistance in our own commitment to Christian hospitality throughout this year; namely to welcome visitors as we would welcome Christ. The prominent, visible sign of the blessing we ask is made by writing above the front door of the house with chalk that has been blessed for this purpose. The following inscription is made: 20 + C + M + B + 19. The numbers are for the current year of 2019. The letters have two meanings. 1) They are the initials of the traditional names of the Three Wise Men: Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar. 2) They also abbreviate the Latin phrase Christus mansionem benedicat which means "May Christ bless the house." The crosses represent the holiness of the Wise Men sanctified by their adoration of the Infant Christ. Look for the materials you need to do this blessing as you exit the church this weekend.

Scripture Readings for the Solemnity of the Epiphany of The Lord - Isaiah 60:1-6; Ephesians 3:2-3a, 5-6; Matthew 2:1-12

A Duty Sanctioned - One of the things that I have always found endearing to the history of our parish is the contribution of its families since the earliest days. The church was built on determination, sweat, and much faith on the part of our ancestors. Therefore, I believe the legacy of the building they have left to us is important to preserve as well as the memory of what they needed to do to accomplish a duty in their time. For this purpose, I asked parishioner Brenda O'Halloran to write a book based on the story of us. The book is entitled A Duty Sanctioned. You may read an excerpt by clicking on the book image here. We hope you will purchase your very own copy of the book to read in its entirety and to also help with this very worthwhile fundraising endeavor! TO ORDER: Contact Kim at the church office (email subject: Book Order). We prefer that you pick your order up at the church office, but mailing options are available (applicable shipping costs apply).

GUIDE TO OUR STATUES: A guide is available on this website to help you learn about the statues in the church. Mouse over the General Information tab at the top of any page to see a dropdown menu with a link to the guide or click here...

HAMILTON/GALLATIN MASSES - Beginning June 12th, one of our former pastors, Fr. Tom Hermes, will become the new pastor at Sacred Heart in Hamilton and Mary Immaculate in Gallatin. Fr. Jack Zupez SJ has been living at the rectory in Hamilton for the last couple years. Beginning in June, Fr. Jack will again take up residence at our parish as he continues his primary ministry in the area prisons.

RESOURCES - Here are some resources available to aid us in being more knowledgeable about our faith. Please consider the following to determine which might be the best for you. --Fr. Kneib

Flocknotes - an email service which sends a passage of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, gospels, or the diary of St. Faustina to you daily.

Magazines and Online Print - The following are available online and in print. Please click on the link or call the number to learn how to subscribe.

Notice of Allegations of Abuse - The diocese has received an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor by deceased Father Robert Cameron. This allegation was deemed credible by the Ombudsman following diocesan policy for response to allegations. The abuse occurred in 1963 when Cameron was teaching at St. Joseph Academy, and he was assigned as parochial vicar at St. Columban Parish, Chillicothe. While the diocese has not received any other accusations of child sexual abuse against Fr. Cameron, it has received several reports of abuse and harassment of adults, including seminarians, by Fr. Cameron. Cameron's parish assignments included St. Catherine, Kansas City; St. Patrick, Kansas City; St. Columban, Chillicothe; St. Thomas More, Kansas City; St. Mary, Independence, and Nativity of Mary, Independence. In addition, while on other assignments, Fr. Cameron lived in residence at St. Mark, Independence; St. Ann, Independence; Guardian Angels, Kansas City; Our Lady of Lourdes, Raytown, and Coronation of Our Lady, Grandview. Fr. Cameron further served as teacher at St. Pius X High School; St. Joseph Academy, Chillicothe; Notre Dame de Sion High School, and as principal at St. Mary High School, Independence. Fr. Cameron died in June 2015.

The diocese has also received an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor by deceased Father Sylvester Hoppe. The allegation dates from the time Hoppe served at St. Columban Parish from 1968-1971. The diocese received the first report of abuse by Hoppe in 2002. Hoppe was the subject of two lawsuits claiming child sexual abuse which the diocese settled in 2008. Several other allegations of child sexual abuse have been made against him. Hoppe's parish assignments included Immaculate Conception, St. Joseph; St. Rose, Savannah; St. Patrick, Forest City; St. Paul, Tarkio; St. Benedict, Burlington Junction; St. Columban, Chillicothe; St. Ann, Excelsior Springs, and Sacred Heart Norborne. He also served as diocesan director of Catholic Boy Scouts and as chaplain at St. Mary's Orphanage in St. Joseph. Hoppe retired in 1991 and died in 2002.

If you were harmed by Fr. Hoppe, Fr. Cameron, or any other person who has worked or volunteered for the diocese, no matter how long ago, the diocese wants to provide care and healing resources to you and your family. Please contact the Diocesan Ombudsman at 816.812.2500 if the abuse involves a priest, deacon, employee or volunteer of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph.

Report suspicions of abuse:
1. Call the Missouri Child Abuse Hotline at 1.800.392.3738 (if the victim is currently under the age of 18), and
2. Contact your local law enforcement agency or call 911, and
3. After reporting to these civil and law enforcement authorities, report suspected sexual abuse of a minor or vulnerable adult to the Diocesan Ombudsman at 816.812.2500 if the abuse involves a priest, deacon, employee or volunteer of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph. The Diocese has a sincere commitment to providing care and healing resources to victims of sexual abuse and their families. Please contact the Victim Advocate, Kathleen Chastain, at 816.392.0011 or for more information.

Photo: CT
Grand Marshal Trophy, Holiday Parade, 11/21/2015

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St. Columban Catholic Church 1111 Trenton Street, Chillicothe, MO  64601
Phone: 660-646-0190

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