Oblate Jubilees Celebrated in Belleville

The Church of Our Lady of the Snows in Belleville, IL. was the site of an Oblate Jubilee Celebration featuring men commemorating anywhere from 25 to 60 years of priesthood on August 31, 2015.

(Oblate Jubilarins L-R) Fr. Rudolph Nowakowski, Fr. Joseph Hitpas, Fr. James Brobst, Fr. James Allen, Fr. Paul Wightman, Dr. Salvatore De George, Fr. William Woestman, Fr. James Deegan. Not Pictured, Fr. William Clark)

The Jubilarians celebrated either years of priesthood (ordination), or years in religious life, which begins during formation when an individual takes their first religious vows.

(Pictured below on right are novices: (L-R) Nishan Priyadarshana, Joshua Nash, Amila Perera, Steven Montez)














(Pictured above L-R Fr. James Allen, Fr. James Deegan)

Oblate Novices led the procession for the Celebratory Mass which featured Fr. James Deegan, OMI presiding and Fr. James Allen, OMI delivering the thanksgiving-themed homily.

Afterwards Oblates and guests went to the Shrine restaurant for a meal. After dinner, Jubilarian,  Fr. Jim Brobst, OMI (Pictured on right) introduced each Jubilarian who then  said a few words about their Oblate lives and ministries. 

One of the most unique personal stories came from Fr. Paul Wightman, (Pictured on left) a long-time spelunker who is recognized as the earliest surveyor and explorer of the Fogelpole Cave System in Monroe County, Illinois. Recently the land around the cave has been purchased for preservation and in honor of Fr. Wightman’s work, it has been named the Paul Wightman Subterranean Nature Preserve.   






 Celebrants at the Church on Monday were:

Rev. Paul Wightman, OMI     65 Years of Religious Life, 60 Years of Priesthood

Rev. William Woestman, OMI           65 Years of Religious Life

Rev. William Clark, OMI                   60 Years of Priesthood

Rev. Rudolph Nowakowski, OMI     60 Years of Religious Life

Rev. Salvatore De George, OMI        50 Years of Priesthood

Rev. James Allen, OMI                      50 Years of Priesthood

Rev. Joseph Hitpas, OMI                   50 Years of Priesthood

Rev. James Deegan, OMI                   50 Years of Religious Life

Rev. James Brobst, OMI                    25 Years of Priesthood

 Jubilarians Unable to Attend this Celebration:

 Rev. Donald Dietz, OMI                    65 Years of Religious Life

 Rev. Edward Figueroa, OMI              60 Years of Religious Life

 Rev Michael Hussey, OMI                 60 Years of Religious Life

 Rev. Paul Marx, OMI                         50 Years of Priesthood

 Rev. William Sheehan, OMI               50 Years of Priesthood

 Rev. Paul Waldie, OMI                      50 Years of priesthood

 Rev. Edward De Leon, OMI              40 Years of Religious Life

 Rev. Robert Leising, OMI                  25 Years of Religious Life