September 19, 2019 // Diocese

Around the Diocese: Sept. 22, 2019

Ava’s Grace support group to meet monthly

MISHAWAKA — Parents who have experienced miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss and would like to listen to and pray with others who know this deep suffering are encouraged to consider attending a new monthly support group sponsored by Ava’s Grace, a diocesan ministry dedicated to offering spiritual, emotional and practical support to families who have lost a baby before or after birth.

Starting Oct. 16, the group will meet on the third Wednesday evening of the month from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the St. John Paul II Center, 1328 W. Dragoon Trail, Mishawaka. Subsequent meetings this fall and winter will be on Nov. 20 and Dec. 18.

For more information about Ava’s Grace, contact Lisa Everett at [email protected] or visit

USF celebrates St. Francis of Assisi with three events 

FORT WAYNE — The University of Saint Francis will celebrate its patron saint, Francis of Assisi, with three upcoming events at the campus, 2701 Spring St. 

These events are free and open to the public, but attendees are asked to bring personal care items for a collection to benefit Vincent Village. 

A blessing of pets will take place at 6:15 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 29, at Brookside.  

Pets and their owners are welcome to meet near the St. Francis statue outside the mansion for a brief service commemorating St. Francis’ love for animals and all creation. Father Patrick Hake will bless each pet at the end of the service. 

Through readings, hymns and ritual, participants at the Transitus, 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3, will recall the night of Francis’ passage with “Sister Death” into eternal life. Fellowship and refreshments will follow in the Doermer Family Center for Health Sciences Education. The Transitus will be celebrate in St. Francis Chapel. 

People are also invited to join in a celebration of St. Francis’ life and birth into heaven in word, song and sacrament. A Mass will be said Friday, Oct. 4, at 11:30 a.m. in the St. Francis Chapel. Father Robert Showers, OFM Conventual, will be the celebrant for the Mass. 

Born in 1182, Francis Bernardone’s dramatic reversion to the Christian faith, his life of poverty and his service to the needy in imitation of Christ sparked a spiritual movement that continues to impact society and the Church today through the three religious orders he founded. 

For more information, call Assistant Vice President for Mission Integration Sister Anita Holzmer at 260-399-7700, ext. 6705, or email [email protected]

Avilla students aim to ‘Do great things with great love’

Students of St. Mary of the Assumption School kicked-off their Instruments of Peace Program last week. This year they will strive to live out St. Teresa of Kolkata’s words, “Do small things with great love,” focusing on a different virtue each month that will help them grow in charity. Pictured is principal Andrew Adams leading students in the activity. — Provided by Joni Lazoff


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