Dinner with the Provincial, Then a Welcome Ceremony for Five New Novices

Belleville, IL

By Fr. Louis Studer, OMI and Will Shaw

“I took the opportunity to share a meal with the novice class and Oblate Formators. Five novices begin this year of prayer, ministry and study on Tuesday, August 17. There are three novices from Zambia, one from Canada and one from U.S. On my left is Br. Pat McGee and at the head of the table on other side is Br. George Litiya. Fr. Frank Kuzcera, Novitiate Director, took the picture.” – Fr. Louis Studer, OMI

On Tuesday August 17, 2021, Oblates and friends gathered at the Church of Our Lady of the Snows on the grounds of the Shrine of the same name to welcome five men to their novitiate year. U.S. Provincial, Fr. Louis Studer OMI officiated at the ceremony in which Oblate formators, Fr. Frank Kuzcera, OMI ( Novice Director), and Oblate Brothers Pat McGee and George Litiya also participated.

The men will begin their Novice Year at the Henri Tempier Formation Community at the Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows in Belleville, IL before moving to the newly-renovated Immaculate Heart of Mary Novitiate outside Godfrey, IL. The five men are: Chileshe Mulenga from Zambia, Royd Miyomba, Zambia and Sipho Mukobola, also Zambia. Etienne Kabemba comes to us from Canada, and Pablo Henning is from the U.S.

(L-R back row) Bro. Pat McGee, OMI, Bro. George Litiya, OMI, Etienne Kabemba, Pablo Henning, Fr. Frank Kuzcera, OMI, (Front row) Royd Miyomba, Chileshe Mulenga, Sipho Mukobola

Gathering in the vestibule prior to the ceremony were: (L-R) Bro. Tom Ruhmann (back to camera) pre-novice, Luis Ramirez, Vicar-provincial, Fr. Art Flores, and Fr. Walter Butor

Waiting in the pews (L-R) Fr. Raul Salas, Fr. Juan Gaspar (behind Fr. Salas) Vicar-provincial, Fr. Jim Brobst, Fr. Joseph Hitpas (behind Fr. Brobst) and Fr. Joe Ferraioli

Novice master, Fr. Frank Kuczera, opened the ceremony

Fr. Studer addressed his comments to the novices

The young men formally request to be admitted to the Oblate Novitiate

One by one the men sign their formal requests. Here Mukobola Sipho signs before Bro. George Litiya (L) Fr. Frank Kuczera (center) and Bro. Pat McGee (R)

Having made their commitment it’s one final photo with the Provincial before a celebratory luncheon. (L-R Back row:) Etienne Kabemba, Pablo Henning, (Center L-R) Fr. Louis Studer, OMI, Sipho Mukobola, (Front row L-R) Royd Miyomba, Chileshe Mulenga