From the Desk of the Pastor






Father Robert's Easter Message 2022



Our forty days and forty nights of Lenten fasting, almsgiving, and penances are now over. Our somber Good Friday service of entering into the Passion of Christ has passed. “We adore you O Christ, because by your Holy Cross and Resurrection, you have redeemed the world.” The “Gloria” again resounds within our worship space. The light of the Easter vigil candles is passed along from person to person. The Easter proclamation fulfills that Christs’ suffering is now past and the Lamb of God redeems all of humanity.


The Lenten season had called us “to come back to the Lord with humble and contrite hearts,” to renew and refresh, to be transformed, acknowledging the signs of God’s ever renewing love once again. For those of us in this particular area of the world, we welcome the notion that the cold, gloomy, months of winter are now behind us. Fourth-century Byzantine church father St. John Chrysostom acknowledged a harmony of Christianity and our created world, connecting the resurrection and the new “spring” of plants and flowers.


After the resurrection, Jesus’ initial followers were faced with fear, confusion, and debate. There were many more questions than answers. Today, we have the gift of wisdom from Christ’s Church, these two thousand plus years later, that inform us of our faith and the Easter mystery. We are now called God’s Easter people! So, for us, this would be another “What now moment?” Moving forward, “How do we live our lives as more authentic disciples?” “With whom are we supposed to share this good news?” Christ still asks, “Who do you say that I am?” (Mark 8:29). We, in turn, should be asking, “What are we to do…..?” (Acts 2:37).


The sheer drama of all of the events of the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ draw us in and invites us to claim a deeper relationship with God. As we walk this life and faith journey each spring we are encouraged to grow deeper and wiser in our Christianity. We are called to consider ever more deeply the questions we may have about our faith and our calling as modern-day disciples. We should consider our relationship with one another as a community, to strengthen our journey together and our relationship with the divine, with persistence and courage.


We now have fifty days to joyfully celebrate Easter, culminating in the feast of Pentecost, where we will celebrate our 175th anniversary year of the establishment of St. Stephen’s by our forefathers and mothers. They entered into a new world with fear, confusion, and uncertainty, yet they persevered in faith, the same faith we carry on today. God continues to pour out his Spirit of life upon us as he did centuries ago.

With thanksgiving we say; “The Lord is risen; he is risen indeed!”

May God bless you on this Easter Sunday and in all-ways!!!

Fr. Robert




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Archbisop Listecki's Easter 2022 Letter

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Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

The bishop has the great privilege of ordaining men to the priesthood, and ordination day is one of the great moments of the year – especially in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. It’s the culmination of the education and formation of men who will be sent to serve the “People of God” and assure that the sacramental life of the Church will continue to be administered. We all take pride in the work of Saint Francis de Sales Seminary that establishes an environment for men to grow in their understanding and dedication to the Church.
On May 21, 2022 at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist, I will ordain six men to the priesthood for service to the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. They are Dcn. Matthew Ferch, Dcn. Kevin Harmon, Dcn. Matthew Kirk, Dcn. Tonny Kizza, Dcn. Ariel Orozco, and Dcn. Pedro Ruiz. While these men come from varied backgrounds, there is one characteristic that joins them together: the understanding that they will stand in persona Christi – in the person of Christ – for the Church that Jesus founded.
The action of ordination is in the imposition of hands. In this simple gesture, the power of the Church is transmitted, and an “ontological” change occurs. The very being of the ordained person is now transformed and receives the grace and spiritual power to sanctify others.
On May 14, 1975, I received the imposition of hands by the Archbishop of Chicago, John Cardinal Cody, in the Chapel of St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, Ill. I was one of 38 men. All of us different but all feeling inadequate to the task ahead. One must be willing to surrender one’s life and understand that God and His Church will now be in control of your life. Jesus warns, “No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the Kingdom of God.”
I began a journey working for the love of Christ and His Church. This journey took me to places I would never have imagined. I developed friendships which became my quasi families and was privileged to witness Christ-saving forgiveness, conversions and healings. I offered services that joined couples together, heard the confessions of sins and presided over services, turning loved ones over to God. In my 47 years, the face of God has been celebrated in the lives of the people that I served through my ordained priesthood. I could never return to the Lord the blessings that He has given to me through the priesthood.
The six men who will be ordained will begin their journeys as priests. They cannot look back but forward, so that the Lord will take them and use them as instruments of His power and glory. I only pray that they will be as happy and fulfilled as I have been.
I know that the surrender to the will of God will take them on a journey that will end in a profound relationship with the Lord, and the eternal happiness waiting for all believers. All of us must follow the Lord seeking to do His will and LOVE ONE ANOTHER.   

Most Reverend Jerome E. Listecki

Archbishop of Milwaukee