The Register

June 14, 2019

    In this issue.
  • Blessed to serve: New Catholic Charities office opens in Manhattan.

  • Annual dinner honors diocesan seminarians.

  • Prayer and Action team in Colby, Abilene.


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Annual dinner honors diocesan seminarians

The Register

Salina — More than 200 gathered May 30 at the Salina Country Club to mix, mingle and pray with seminarians for the Salina Diocese. Guests gathered for a social hour, followed by Evening Prayer, dinner and a presentation from the seminarians.
“Why do I do what I do? I think the answer to that … is it’s because it’s what God called me to do,” said co-vocation director Father Gale Hammerschmidt. “Hopefully that’s why any of us do anything, because God called us to it. If we say yes, he will bless us with peace that comes in the midst of joy and in the midst of suffering.” He said the last year has been difficult for many priests and seminarians, as dioceses across the country and around the world are dealing publicly with previous cases of clergy abuse. “There are days that aren’t as easy as other days. There are days that are incredible,” Father Hammerschmidt said. “You put them together … it’s a peace and sense of blessing that is indescribable.”


Each seminarian gave a brief introduction, as well as introduced their family and parish pastor. Bishop Jerry Vincke encouraged continued support of the seminarians “We really need you. We need your support,” he said. “It hasn’t been the easiest year, but we thank you for your faith in the midst of all this. Thank you for your love and support of all our priests and seminarians.”
Prayerful support is essential for the success of a seminarian program, but it is not the only means of support necessary. “We were talking about the budget next year. The seminarians take a big chunk of it, but it’s worth every penny,” Bishop Vincke said. “Seminary costs are expensive. It runs from $40,000 to $50,000 per year per seminarian. It’s a big chunk of change, but it’s worth every penny because you’re forming them to be a priest who gives us the Eucharist and who forgives our sins.”

Financial support for seminarian education comes from a variety of sources, including: a portion of the Bishop’s Annual Appeal; the annual seminarian collection; individual donations from across the diocese; an endowment from the Yesterday, Today and Forever Capital Campaign from 2010; Seminarian Burse Endowments; grants from Catholic Extension and Catholic Home Missions; and farm income.

As the chaplain at the St. Isidore Student Center in Manhattan, Father Hammerschmidt said the faith of the youth is encouraging. “It’s incredible, at Kansas State, we’ve had 13 go off to pursue either the priesthood or religious life,” Father Hammerschmidt said. “It’s beyond amazing to me … in an age when you read the headlines and it seems like the ship is going down and it’s going down fast … it’s just not the case. The Holy Spirit will continue to renew the Church.”

Prayer and Action team in Colby, Abilene

Salina — Six youth began leading the summer’s Prayer and Action program the first week of June. Prayer and Action lasts five days, with students arriving Sunday evening, and staying until Friday morning. During June, the team will be in Colby; during July the team will be in Abilene. During the week, high school students will paint, clean, do yard work and perform other meaningful tasks, for the poor, handicapped and the elderly.

Every parish within the diocese is invited to bring as many or as few of their high school students as they wish to participate in the program. Prayer and Action also asks that for every six youth, one adult leader also attend. Adult leaders are to share the same experience as the youth and are asked to be positive role models throughout the week’s activities. Father Gale Hammerschmidt founded the program; it began in the Diocese of Salina in 2006. Prayer and Action ­is offered by the Diocesan Office of Youth Ministry­.

Team Members:

Megan Bates, Beloit: I’m so excited for Prayer and Action this summer, because this mission perfectly embodies our call as Christians to be Christ to those we encounter through simple acts of service. This program has taught me so much about being and seeing Christ in our daily interactions. I’m overjoyed to be able to facilitate this for others in the diocese with this incredible team. I’m so grateful for the life-long friendships I’ve formed over the summers, and I can’t wait to witness others do the same!

Kade Megaffin*, Hays: I am very thankful and excited to be a part of Prayer and Action for another year! Over the last two summers, I have seen this program give students, adults and communities an amazing opportunity to authentically encounter the person of Jesus Christ. This is my favorite part of the program because true communion and fellowship with our lord and king starts with that first encounter before it builds into a deep relationship. Prayer and Action may not be able to immediately give someone a deep relationship with Jesus, but if we can foster an opportunity for someone to encounter Christ Jesus, then it is worth everything. It is also a lot of fun!

Paul Flesher*, Hays: I am looking forward to working and praying alongside so many from our diocese. The worksites provide a great opportunity for getting to know the participants and the community members, which is exciting. I am also excited to work and bond with the core team over the summer. This summer will provide me with a great opportunity to rely more fully on God and strengthen my relationship with him.

Trent Logan*, Salina: I’m excited to be on the Prayer and Action team this year due to the massive impact it has on both our communities, as well as the faith of many high school Catholics. I’m looking forward to not only what all we accomplish in Colby and Abilene, but also how this summer bears fruit in the future of everyone participating. This is an incredible gift to our diocese, so I’m excited to be able to help out by being on the team. I’m praying that this summer really inspires young people to more actively live out the faith in their everyday lives.

Carly Smith, Manhattan: I’m stoked for Prayer and Action because I have never immersed myself in something that would allow me to give so FULLY of myself physically and emotionally. This summer will be the perfect opportunity to serve those I encounter without holding back. I can’t wait for this time of learning gift of self. The Lord has invited me with freedom and joy to share abundant life with high schoolers this summer and I’m excited to do just that! My hope is that June, July and the months to come will be filled with zealous, Catholic high schoolers that are on fire for sharing Christ’s love!

Ingrid Herrenbruck, Salina: This will be my second year serving on staff, so I am most excited to see students I built relationships with last year. It’s always exciting to see the transformations that occur during the week, but it’s so rewarding when they return the next summer zealous for the faith. I myself have grown a lot since last summer and look forward to sharing in that with the students.

*Seminarian for the Diocese of Salina.

Totus Tuus teams prepare for summer

Salina — Young adults began teaching the summer’s Totus Tuus catechism program the first week of June.

Split into three teams, they will offer sessions in 19 parishes before the summer is over.
Each week includes daytime sessions for children through sixth grade and evening sessions for teenagers. The daytime sessions include class, Mass, songs and skits as well as social time. Evening sessions for teens include talks, meditations, reflections and time to socialize.

Father Luke Thielen and Macie Frakes, former Totus Tuus instructors, spent a week with the teams in Salina preparing them for their work. Totus Tuus, which means “totally yours” and was the motto of St. John Paul II, is offered by the Diocesan Office of Youth Ministry.


Here are some of the team members’ comments about becoming Totus Tuus instructors:

Aaron Dlabal*, Wilson: Teaching Totus Tuus is such a privilege and I’m so excited that I can do it again this summer. From teaching to performing skits to meeting the awesome people of our diocese, every day is a new adventure. God has blessed me so much and I want to share those blessings with the people I meet. I hope that he will use me as his instrument of grace and mercy throughout this summer.

Adam Bates, Beloit: I’m excited to share the faith with the youth through Totus Tuus. I’m looking forward to growing in relationship with the people of the diocese, as well as my teammates. My prayer is that we instructors will follow the Holy Spirit this summer, so that we might bring souls to Christ and show them the beauty of the Catholic faith.

Claire Friess, Hoxie: As Catholics, we are all called to serve. I recently graduated from Benedictine College and chose to give up this summer to serve rather than to jump directly into a career. I pray that this summer I will be able to show Christ to the people whom I encounter and help lead them into a deeper relationship with him.

Lindsey Gack, Salina: I am so excited to be on the Totus Tuus team for my diocese this year! I have participated in this program since it came to my hometown and for the past 12 years, it has been a dream of mine to be on the team. I am delighted to be able to share my faith with the youth of our diocese, and hopefully make an impact on their lives like my Totus Tuus teachers did to me. I pray that the Holy Spirit will guide my teammates and I to grow in faith and friendship throughout this summer. I can’t wait to get started!

Emma Girton, Clay Center: I always enjoyed attending Totus Tuus a lot when I was younger, and I loved teaching last year. I hope to use the experience I gained last year to make this summer even more impactful, and I’m excited to spend another summer encountering the people of our diocese and growing in my faith.

Torrie Gregg, Hays: I am very excited to spend my summer teaching Totus Tuus because I will get the chance to inspire others to love the faith of the Catholic Church so that one day they can live out a life centered around Christ. Some things I am looking forward to are being surrounded by the sacraments, prayer and a team of people who are on fire for their faith. I pray that this summer brings many blessings to all involved and that Jesus will work through me to touch the lives of everyone we encounter.

Christopher Hilger, Russell: I’ve participated in Totus Tuus or Prayer and Action since I was in middle school, but I have never had the opportunity to help lead one of these great programs. I am very excited to have the privilege to help the little kids, middle schoolers and high schoolers grow in the faith. I look forward to teaching, praying and having fun with everyone I get to serve! I also look forward to encountering everyone where they’re at and getting to deepen my relationship with Christ through and alongside every person I meet.

Myka Kuhlman, Oakley: This summer, I hope to let Jesus love the parishioners and youth in our diocese through my service. I am looking forward to growing in my faith by getting to share it with others. I am excited to have some fun and meet more of our diocesan community. My prayer for this summer is that Totus Tuus touches lives and brings love and joy to many.

Kyle Pfeifer*, Manhattan: I’m looking forward to growing in my discernment and formation through Totus Tuus! They say thay teaching the faith is the best way to learn it. I also look forward to getting to know the great people, priests and parishes of our diocese. I’ve heard so much about people in my last year, now I get to put faces to names and families.

Ridge Pinkston, Kingman: I am looking forward to growing in my faith and sharing it with all the participants and teammates of Totus Tuus. I am very excited to have the opportunity to serve in the Diocese of Salina. My hope is that this summer I will be open to God’s will for me and help others be open to his will as well. Through serving in Totus Tuus, I look forward to growing in deeper community with the people of this diocese.­

Kenneth Snider, Linn (parishioner at St. Augustine, Washington): I am looking forward to spreading the joy of the sacraments to the youth of the Diocese of Salina. I am super excited to be back in my home diocese after nine months of missionary work up in Wisconsin. I look forward to bringing the love of Christ to everyone I meet this summer including my teammates!

Claire Zarybnicky, Hanover: This summer I am excited to have the opportunity to share the faith with the young people in our diocese through Totus Tuus. I truly look forward to teaching others about the love Christ has for each individual as they dive deeper into the midst of Catholicism, as well as learning more about the beauty of the Catholic faith through the encounters I have. Not only this, but the bond I will form with my teammates and the experiences we have with one another will create strong friendships that will last a lifetime. ­­­
*Seminarian for the Diocese of Salina.

Youth gather to play, pray at annual Junior CYO Camp

The Register

Junction City — The smell of sunscreen lingered in the air as the echo of the diving board springs reverberated across the water, punctuated by a splash. The water in the creek rushed over rocks as it flowed around the arts and crafts area, past the volleyball and frisbee games and into the heart of Rock Springs Ranch. Nearly 300 youth gathered May 25-28 for the Annual Junior CYO Camp, sponsored by the Office of Youth Ministry of the Salina Diocese. “Religion is woven in,” said Cyrus Vajnar, 14, who will be a freshman at Hays High School in August. “They have a theme every year.”

The theme is often the same as CYO convention, which was “Come as You Are.” “I liked that theme because it helped me be myself at the camp,” he said. Experiencing traditional camp activities such as canoeing, trap and rifles is always fun. Yet it was the Monday evening “Pit Mass” that Vajnar said resonated with him. “I like the outdoor Mass because (the setting) was unique and special,” he said. “I like the fire pit and the trees around it. It was a different experience of God.”


This is the third year he has attended camp. The idea of a religion-based camp was introduced by his friends. “I thought it could be fun,” said Vajnar, a parishioner at Immaculate Heart of Mary in Hays. “As a kid, I used to think that church was boring. I didn’t know anything about it or pay attention. “Going to CYO or camps, it makes faith more interesting. Now I’m listening to the readings and Gospels; I know what it means.”

Fellow camper Lani Richards, from Salina, agreed the dynamic was different during Mass with her peer group. “A weekend Mass, they’re often talking to the older people,” she said of the homily content. “Going to Mass with a whole bunch of people your age — when the priest was talking to you — they were talking more to our age group.”

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Eucharistic Adoration celebrated in Antonino

The Register

Antinino — For the first time in a long time, the lights at Our Lady Help of Christians Church in Antonino were on around the clock. The parish hosted 24-hour Eucharistic Adoration May 23-34, which coincides with the feast day of the parish’s namesake. The idea was in part due to the feast day, and also in response to Pope Francis’ call for prayer for victims of the clerical abuse crisis as well as the Salina Diocese’s own Bishop Jerry Vincke’s call for evangelization. Eucharistic Adoration was held from 7 p.m. on May 23 through 7 p.m. on May 24. “I thought it was a great idea,” said the parish’s pastor, Father Earl Befort, O.F.M.Cap., of the idea, which was brought to him in January. “It was a way to celebrate the feast of Our Lady Help of Christians but would also provide us an opportunity to pray for the sick, the elderly, the young,and anyone in need of prayer. It was also a way to pray in thanksgiving for the way God has blessed us over the past 110 years.”

Parishioner Larry Reichert said there was at least one adorer signed up for each of the 24 hours, but often there were more in attendance. “We had several farmers come in during the day,” he said. “Due to all the rain, they couldn’t get out in their fields. We also had some who saw people coming in and out of the church, so they stopped in for a while. We even had some of our townspeople who aren’t Catholic who saw the lights on for 24 hours — because we’d turned on every light we could — and wondered what was going on!”

To Father Befort, the event presented the parishioners and the larger community a chance to embrace the significance of Jesus’ presence in the Eucharist, something that he thinks people may forget in the busyness of daily living “[An event like this] makes them aware of the importance of the Eucharist, of adoration and of prayer, things that may get lost amid the shuffle of life,” he said. “This was a great break for our parishioners and it really stressed the importance of these things. It was very valuable.”

Father Befort said after witnessing the response to the Adoration celebration in Antonino, he is planning to recommend and encourage it in the other parishes he serves. “It was a blessed thing for us in Antonino,” said Reichert, “and it seems to have really made an impression on the community.”

Seven Dolors church renovation receives two preservation awards

Manhattan — The recently renovated Seven Dolors Church in Manhattan was recognized twice in May for excellence in preservation work.  On May 9, the Manhattan/Riley County Preservation Alliance presented an Award of Excellence in Historic Preservation to Father Kerry Ninemire, pastor, in Manhattan. Representatives from BHS Construction were also present.  Formerly known as Green Construction, the company was the one who originally built the church in 1920.


The second award received was a Preservation Merit Award from the Kansas Preservation Alliance. This was awarded May 17 in Topeka to Father Ninemire, parish finance manager Stacie Levendofsky and representatives of BHS Construction.  Ten preservation awards were handed out in Topeka; Seven Dolors was the only church to receive this award.  Seven Dolors Church was rededicated Nov. 4, following a roughly $2 million, nearly seven-month renovation process.  In addition to money raised from parishioners, Catholic Extension, which is based in Chicago, provided financial assistance. The church needed to raise $120,000, and Catholic Extension would match $60,000 toward the project.

‘Register’ your support Donations needed to send newspaper to every household

By The Register

Salina — The Register, the newspaper of the Diocese of Salina, is delivered to all registered parishioners.

To be able to continue to do that, however, requires some help on their part.

Today’s issue includes a donation envelope. Every household is asked each year to donate $25, roughly the cost of printing and mailing the newspaper.

Until three years ago, The Register was mailed only to those who subscribed. In January 2014, the publication model changed, and the newspaper was sent to every household registered with a parish in the diocese.

To accommodate the increased printing and mailing costs — from 5,500 to about 17,500 copies — the decision was made to reduce publication from weekly to twice monthly — on the second and fourth Fridays.

Instead of selling subscriptions, The Register would seek a $25 donation from each family to underwrite the additional costs.

In addition to each household receiving the newspaper, each Register edition also is available online at