CELEBRATING MLK: New Life in Christ Interdenominational Church in O’Fallon was the setting for an annual breakfast to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., on the occasion of his 88th birthday. Msgr. William Hitpas was the guest speaker for the breakfast. Click here for story. For more stories from around the diocese, please go to The Messenger website: bellevillemessenger.org

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virtue-based restorative discipline part of curriculum at St. mary in, mt. vernon

Conflict and resolution meet at a crossroads over and over again, probably more than once a day. Whether conflict wins or resolution does depends on our attitudes and beliefs.

At St. Mary Catholic School in Mt. Vernon they began to practice Virtue-Based Restorative Discipline (VBRD) three years ago, and making the principles of the program part of school life has brought changes beyond anyone’s imagining.

Ranzie Callahan, sixth-grade teacher, said she began teaching at St. Mary’s two years before the program began. Now, “I see a complete difference in the climate of the school, Callahan said. “Students use different language in conversation; they’re quick to notice virtue.”

feeding god's people at holy childhood in mascoutah

When students at Holy Childhood Catholic School in Mascoutah meet at 7:30 a.m. on the third Thursday of every month to make sandwiches, they don’t know who will receive them.

When Felix McGaughy began distributing the sandwiches at the Mary Brown Center in East St. Louis, he didn’t know who had made them or why. He distributes them Monday through Friday to people in need.

Called “Feeding God’s People,” any and all students — including preschoolers, some parents and teachers gather in the cafeteria, beginning at 7:30 a.m. on the designated Thursday, bringing bread, meat and cheese that is used to make the sandwiches.

take a look back to 1942 in the diocese

As part of The Messenger’s 110th anniversary, we are taking snapshots of past newspapers.

This issue we go back to 1942 In the Diocese — In the Diocese of Belleville the year 1942 was marked by a spirit of increased prayerfulness for the welfare of our country and for the safe keeping of our boys in service.  By the order of His Excellency, The Most Rev. Henry Althoff, a weekly Holy Hour for victory and peace was inaugurated in all churches and chapels throughout the Diocese on the first Sunday in January.

Here is a short summary of the news from our Diocese from 1942.

diocesan finance statement for fiscal year 2015 - 2016

The Diocese of Belleville has completed the audit of its financial reports for the Fiscal Year ended June 30, 2016. We are presenting the summary reports that display the financial position and statement of activities for each Fund of the Diocese for the Fiscal Year. Supplemental discussions will explain the composition of each operating entity.


As a citizen of this country, as a Catholic Priest and Bishop, and as an African-American, I am deeply distressed by the recent violent eruptions of the racial divide in the United States. Last week, I served as the Catholic Chaplain during Week Three of the nine-week summer session at the historic Chautauqua Institution. Moral Leadership in Action was the week’s theme. There could not have been a more urgent topic considering the presidential election, young people slaughtered in an Orlando club, People of Color killed in encounters with law enforcement, and the assassination of police officers by deranged gunmen.

As the Republicans and Democrats hold their conventions to nominate their candidates for the office of President, the American people are reaching the point when they must decide for whom they will cast their ballots in November. They surely want moral leadership in action. But, for many, this is a very difficult decision, since neither candidate enjoys enormous popularity with the electorate.

Bishop Braxton writes letter on racial divide in the united states for world day of peace

Bishop Edward K. Braxton has written a pastoral letter on the Racial Divide in the United States for the World Day of Peace in 2015. The letter includes a study guide for participants.

It also gives an outline of suggested sharing among participants. “This study-guide should be seen as a flexible resource that can be adapted for use by large or small groups. While the guide is arranged for the participation of members of a group, it can also be used by two people or by an individual. It is for all who, with Christian faith, would like to examine the complex racial divide in our country that is documented in each day’s headlines and the personal experiences of many people,” Bishop Braxton says in the guide.
Please click on this link for a copy of the pastoral letter with the study guide.

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