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Joliet Local News

Local News


St. Anne Church to Hold 141st Annual St. Anne Novena on July 18-26

St. Anne Catholic Church will hold the 141st Annual St. Anne Novena from July 18 -26 on the parish grounds at 230 N Sixth Ave. in St. Anne. Masses prior to July 26 will be held outdoors at 7 p.m., weather permitting (Sundays at 9 a.m.). On Monday, July 26, the Feast of St. Anne, Masses will be offered outdoors at 10 a.m. in English, an indoor Latin Mass at noon and an outdoor Spanish Mass at 2 p.m. All Masses will be followed with the sacrament of anointing, the veneration of the relic and the traditional procession of the relic of St. Anne throughout the village.

For those who cannot attend these services in person, all novena Masses will be offered online at the church website at Please contact the rectory office at 815-427-8265 for further information.

Project Love to Hold Fundraiser in Early August

Project Love, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary, is the charitable program of Illinois Right-to-Life. It supports pregnant women and new mothers by helping with rent, utility bills and other urgent needs. It has saved hundreds of families from eviction and utility shutoffs.  

The organization has given 1,450 grants, totaling over three quarters of a million dollars, to women all over Illinois. Various pregnancy centers refer their clients for their grants. All of its grant money comes from individual donors, and its annual breakfast is its largest fundraiser for the year. 

This year’s breakfast will be held on Saturday, Aug. 7, 2021, at 11 a.m. at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 3003 Corporate West Drive, Lisle. It will include a silent auction and presentation of Project Love’s annual Caritas Award. This year, the award will go to the Northwest Families for Life in Palatine, IL. 

Those who would like to attend may call the Illinois Right-to-Life office at 312-422-9300 for an invitation. Reservations are required. For more information, go to Project Love’s website at

The Diocese Will Hold Its 46th Annual Seminarian Sendoff on Aug. 8, 2021

The 46th annual Seminarian Sendoff will be held on Aug. 8, 2021, from 1-4:30 p.m. at Benet Academy in Lisle on the football field. Join the seminarian families, bishops and priests, and other members of the diocese to send off these men for another year of priestly formation. There will be a tent, a band and picnic fare. 

The highlight of the day will be a whiffle ball game between the seminarians and the priests. The event will close with brief remarks by Bishop Ronald Hicks; Father Steven Borello, director of vocations; and several seminarians sharing about their studies. The cost: adults: $30; children, ages five to 12: $15; children under five: no charge. Register online at or email your request for a reservation form to:

PE Teacher at St. Dominic School, in Bolingbrook, Retires after 40 Years


Nancy Chika Retires
Nancy Chika

Nancy Chika formed St. Dominic School’s students in faith, physical fitness and virtue for 40 years. Her care for the students from pre-kindergarten to 8th grade was evident in the students' enthusiasm for gym class and strong team spirit.  Chika's favorite cheer regularly resounded in the school gym: 

Miss Chika: “St. Dominic School, how do you feel?”

Students: “I feel good, oh I feel so good! Yeah!”

Pro-Life Run/Walk to Act as a Fundraiser for Waterleaf Women’s Center 

A Run for Life – a 5K run/2.2-mile walk – on the streets of Winfield will occur on July 31, 2021. Coordinated by St. John the Baptist Parish and volunteers from the respect life ministries around the diocese, the event will celebrate life and support the Aurora-based Waterleaf Women's Center in their life-affirming mission to provide services and support for women facing crisis pregnancies.

This event will feature Run for Life performance t-shirts for all who register by July 1; on-site registration on the day of the race, starting at 6:30 a.m.; professional and accurate timing by Race Time, Inc.; water stations along the course; and snacks at the finish. To register, go to the following site:  

Montini Catholic High School Says Goodbye to Foreign Languages Department Chairperson


Roberta Raike Retires
Roberta Raike

By Barbara Dawson

Montini Catholic High School in Lombard recently announced the retirement of teacher and Foreign Language Department Chairperson, Roberta Raike, who taught for 46 years and has been at Montini for 21 years. 

She was honored for her service during the Lasallian college preparatory school's Founder's Day ceremony on May 21, where she received a standing ovation from her fellow teachers and Montini students.

"I have wanted to be a teacher since the 7th grade," she said. "I wanted to help students with their education, but I didn't know in what area until my junior year in high school when I took my first Spanish class."  

It was during her freshman year in college, when she had the opportunity to travel to Spain during spring break, that she better knew what she wanted to do for her future.  

"Learning a language became my passion," she said. 

Raike began her teaching career at a Catholic high school in Corpus Christi, TX, before coming back to the Chicagoland area in 1994. She taught at De La Salle High School prior to beginning her Bronco teaching career in 2000.  

"Teaching at Montini was my first encounter with Lasallian education," she said. "It is something special because Lasallian education isn't just about the curriculum; it is about meeting the students where they are at and ‘Touching Their Hearts’ [the John Baptist de La Salle motto]. The rewards in education aren't necessarily immediate. They happen when students have been in college for several years and come back to say ‘thank you’ and that they now understand everything that you were trying to teach them. Being a Lasallian educator is not just a job, but a vocation. I know that quite a few students have gone on to major or minor in a language. I hope to have made a difference in the lives of my students."

Raike has so many good memories throughout her years of teaching and finds it hard to narrow them down to just a few. "Definitely, taking students to Spain, France, and Italy during the summer was always exciting and memorable," she said.  

(Unfortunately, due to Covid shutdowns, last summer's trip to Europe had to be canceled.) She also cherished her times chaperoning homecoming dances, proms, and scoring volleyball and basketball games.  

"Volunteering at these events allowed me to get to know students outside of the classroom,” she said. 

She recalled her first year at Montini, which was also the year that construction of the school's Math Wing began (2000). "Our theme for that year was 'Faith and Flexibility.' That same theme could have been applied to this year with all that we all (students and faculty) endured." 

She is looking forward to catching up on her reading during retirement. She is also looking forward to taking road trips and traveling to California to visit her son and his family. "Of course, if I am at home, I will gladly come to substitute at Montini when needed," she said.

She vowed to always cherish the memories of her fellow teachers and staff members whom she has worked with throughout the years.  

"The camaraderie that was formed through laughter, tears, and experiences will remain with me forever," she said. 

"Roberta will truly be missed," said President Jim Segredo. "She has been a gifted leader in our Foreign Language Department and will always be a valued member of our Montini Catholic family.  We wish her much rest and relaxation in her retirement."

Join Father John Kartje for an Online Bible Study 


Online Bible Study

As the world slowly begins to recover from the turmoil of the past year, join Mundelein Seminary rector Father John Kartje for an in-depth tour through Biblical accounts of restoration from chaotic times. Allow the scriptures to be your guide to spiritual healing and renewal. Register:

Lindenwood Retreat Center to Offer Spiritual Companion Training Program

Lindenwood Retreat Center in Donaldson, IN, is offering training to be a spiritual companion (SC), also known as a spiritual director. The program, which begins on Aug. 20, 2021, lasts for 19 months and trains people to be a guide to others for their journeys in faith. This is a discernment program to help you see where God may be calling you for this ministry.

Upon completion of this program, one can be a resource to help others discern the Holy Spirit’s action in their lives. After fulfilling the requirements for the program, you will receive a certificate of completion.

If others have shared intimately with you about their spiritual lives, this training may be for you. Some of the many topics that are covered are: What is Spiritual Companioning; What Does it Mean to Be Called; Religious Experience and Daily Practices; and Various Methods of Prayer.

This class will be the eighth session that has taken place since its beginning in 2009. Sixty people have already graduated from the program. Each class is conducted on Fridays and Saturdays, with two longer sessions in 2022, which extend from a Tuesday to a Saturday. The sessions are every other month with reading and reflection papers on the off months.

Sr. Joetta Huelsmann, PHJC, and Rev. James Hilleson, M.Div, BCC, are the facilitators. Sr. Joetta is the former director of John XXIII Retreat Center and the Provincial of the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ. Sister is trained in Ignatian spirituality and is a graduate of the Shalem Institute of Spiritual Guidance. Rev. Hilleson is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and has served parishes in Ohio and Indiana for over 25 years. He has served as director of spiritual care and chaplaincy services at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital in Muncie, IN, and is also a spiritual companion graduate.

Here is what some of our graduates are saying: 

"My journey into the SC continues its ever opening, deepening, and surprising path. The greatest and deepest opening is into contemplative listening, the very core of the SC. To listen out of, and for the Silent Whisper, has urged me into a depth I had not experienced before...and be a willing cohort with The Beloved, Mysterious God of us all," shared Jerry Lapp.

Sister Pauline Bridegroom, PHJC, summed up her experience this way: “Participation in the Spiritual Companionship Program provides the opportunity for personal spiritual growth. The readings, guidance, group interaction, writings and prayer in the program help to strengthen one's confidence and ability to speak God's word to others in a variety of ways." 

Registration is to be completed by July 31, 2021. For more information you can call Lindenwood at 574-935-1780, or you may access the application at Lindenwood’s website: Partial scholarships are also available.