More news/appointments to come, including the new pastor of the St-Front Pastoral Region. I’ll say more in the coming weeks in the parishes but thank you for all the kind words, and well-wishes so far, I’m excited for the next years and the experiences to come. I’ve loved being Pastor these past three years in the country parishes in the Wadena Deanery, and the two years at Holy Spirit and Holy Cross High School in Saskatoon: I am looking forward to celebrating/gathering together with each of you over this summer before beginning my studies. Yours in Christ, with Mary, Fr. G. Young…
Date: May 18, 2016
To: Priests, Parish Life Directors, and all the Faithful of the Diocese of Saskatoon
From: Bishop Donald Bolen
We are pleased to announce the following pastoral appointments, all of which will be effective August 1, 2016, unless otherwise indicated. Please note additional appointments will be announced in the coming weeks.
Priests Leaving the Diocese
• Fr. Augustine Ebido, OP – Fr. Augustine ministered in our diocese since December 2010, most recently as Pastor at St. Mary in Macklin, Sacred Heart in Denzil, and St. Donatus in St. Donatus. Fr. Augustine’s Prior Provincial has called him to return to the Dominican Province of St. Joseph the Worker in Nigeria, effective the end of July.
• Fr. Joseph Gyim-Austin – Fr. Joseph ministered in our diocese since December 2008 in a number of parishes, most recently as Pastor at Sacred Heart in Davidson, St. Andrew in Kenaston, Immaculate Heart of Mary in Outlook, and Holy Redeemer in Elbow. He is returning to his home Diocese of Sekondi-Takoradi in Ghana in mid-June.
• Fr. Modestus Ngwu, OP – Fr. Modestus’s Superior has reassigned him to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania effective June 30th. Fr. Modestus served in a number of parishes in the diocese and for the past few years has been a Chaplain at a number of High Schools in Saskatoon and also Chaplain at the Regional Psychiatric Centre.
• Fr. Eugene Nwachukwu – After a year in parish ministry, Fr. Eugene served as Chaplain at St. Ann’s Senior Citizens Village in Saskatoon. Fr. Eugene returned to his home diocese of Sokoto in Nigeria at the end of March.
• Fr. Raphael Vezhaparambil, VC – Fr. Raphael served in a number of parishes in the diocese since he arrived in July 2011, most recently at St. Mary in Wynyard, Christ the King in Foam Lake, Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Wishart. He will be returning to Marymatha Province in Kerala, India, at the beginning of June.
Our profound gratitude to these priests for their faithful ministry in our diocese. We are grateful to them for their generosity in coming to serve here. Each in his own way has deeply enriched the lives of the faithful of the diocese, and we wish them well in the future.
• Fr. Joe Ackerman, OSB – After being involved in pastoral ministry since the mid 1960’s, and since 1998 as Pastor at St. Bruno in Bruno and St. Agnes in Peterson, Fr. Joe is retiring. We wish Fr. Joe well and extend our profound thanks to him for his years of dedicated service. We are incredibly grateful to Fr. Joe as he in his unique way deeply enriched the lives of the faithful of the diocese. We give thanks to Fr. Joe and to God for his generous ministry and wish him well in the days ahead.
• Judy Schmid – After four years of ministry, Judy Schmid is retiring as Parish Life Director at St. Francis Xavier Parish in Saskatoon, effective June 30th. We are profoundly grateful to Judy for her gentle presence in the parish and her faith-filled and dedicated ministry. We wish Judy God’s abundant blessings in the years ahead.
• Fr. Ephraim Mensah – Fr. Ephraim has ministered in our diocese since July 2005 in a number of parishes, most recently at St. Augustine in Humboldt, St. Scholastica in Burr, Holy Trinity in Pilger, and Assumption of Our Lady in Marysburg. Fr. Ephraim was incardinated into our diocese in May 2012. He is taking a twelve-month sabbatical for study and writing.
• Fr. Mick Fleming, CSsR – The Redemptorist community has given Fr. Mick a six-month sabbatical. Fr. Mick is currently serving as Priest Moderator at Our Lady of Guadalupe parish in Saskatoon.
• Fr. Geoffrey Young – Fr. Geoff will be taking a three-year program in liturgy at the University of Sant’Anselmo in Rome beginning this summer. Fr. Geoff has been ministering at St. Front in St. Front, Christ the King in Rose Valley, St. Athanasius in Perigord, St. Felix in Archerwill, St. George in Naicam and St. Lawrence in Nobleville.
Ministry in the North
• Through an arrangement with Archbishop Murray Chatlain of the Archdiocese of Keewatin-LePas, for the foreseeable future our diocese will be providing a priest to serve the parishes in La Ronge and Southend. For the coming year, Fr. Lawrence DeMong, OSB, will be serving as Pastor. Fr. Lawrence ministered most recently at Little Flower in Leader, Sacred Heart in Lancer and Sacred Heart in Liebenthal.
• Fr. Joe Jacek, OMI will be serving as Chaplain for St. Ann’s Senior Citizens Village. He began this appointment in April. Fr. Joe previously served at St. Aloysius in Allan, St. Mary in Colonsay, and St. Alphonsus in Viscount.
• St. Augustine in Humboldt, St. Scholastica in Burr, Holy Trinity in Pilger, and Assumption of Our Lady in Marysburg – Fr. Joseph Salihu will serve as Pastor with Fr. Greg Smith-Windsor serving as Associate Pastor. Fr. Joseph is from the Diocese of Kano in Nigeria, and has been serving in the Archdiocese of Edmonton for the past year. He was ordained July 2, 1994. Fr. Greg was ordained a year ago and has been serving as Associate Pastor at the Cathedral of the Holy Family.
• St. Bruno in Bruno and St. Agnes in Peterson – Fr. Cosmas Epifano, OSB will serve as Pastor. Fr. Cosmas served as Associate Pastor in Humboldt this past year.
• St. Mary in Wynyard, Christ the King in Foam Lake, Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Wishart – Fr. Augustine Osei-Bonsu will be serving as Pastor. Fr. Augustine served at St. Anne’s in Saskatoon and at the Catholic Pastoral Centre. Fr. Augustine is from Ghana. He was ordained August 21, 2010.
• Sacred Heart in Davidson, Holy Redeemer in Elbow, St. Andrew in Kenaston and Immaculate Heart of Mary in Outlook – Fr. Madonna-Godwin (Fr. Godwin) Aghedo, OP will serve as Pastor. Fr. Godwin is a Dominican priest from Nigeria. He was ordained December 13, 1997.
• St. Mary in Macklin, Sacred Heart in Denzil and St. Donatus in St. Donatus – Fr. Binu Rathappillil, VC, a Vincentian priest from the Marymatha Province in India, will serve as Pastor. He was ordained December 28, 2004.
• Little Flower in Leader, Sacred Heart in Lancer and Sacred Heart in Liebenthal – Fr. Joseph Thazhathemuriyil, VC, a Vincentian priest from the Marymatha Province in India, will serve as Pastor. He was ordained December 28, 1989.
• Cathedral of the Holy Family in Saskatoon – Fr. Deyre Azcuna will serve as Associate Pastor, with Fr. David Tumback continuing as Pastor. Fr. Deyre will also be a hospital chaplain. Fr. Deyre is from the Territorial Prelature of Batanes, in the Philippines. He was ordained June 23, 2012.
• Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish in Saskatoon – Fr. Mark Miller, Superior of the Redemptorists has assigned Graham Hill, who will be ordained to the priesthood on June 10th, to the Redemptorist community in Saskatoon. Graham will serve as Priest Moderator of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish.
I wish to express my gratitude to all who will be assuming new responsibilities. They have responded to the needs of the diocese with generous spirits. I ask the people in parishes where changes are taking place to warmly welcome their new pastoral leaders into their midst.
To all the Priests and Parish Life Directors serving our diocesan Church, may God bless you abundantly as you continue your ministry with dedication, generosity and joy. A special note of thanks goes to the Redemptorists, the Oblates of Mary Immaculate and the Benedictines of St. Peter’s Abbey who generously fill in on weekends when there is an urgent need. We are immensely grateful for their ministry.
Please note additional announcements will be made in the coming weeks. We anticipate receiving an additional three missionary priests however their appointments have not yet been finalized.
Grace and Peace in the Risen Lord,
Bishop of Saskatoon