Showing 87 results

Authority record

Diocesan Planning Commission

  • Corporate body
  • 1998-

Fr. John Schuster sent out a letter on November 30, 1998 to prospective members of Bishop Frederick Henry’s newly established Diocesan Planning Commission. The first meeting was held at the Pastoral Centre on January 4, 1999 and was addressed by the Bishop who clarified the mandate. It was to develop a set of recommendations that would assist the Bishop to address the issue of parish transformation. It required that parishes be examined for their vitality and viability. The purpose was to restructure the Diocese, largely in view of the information about the aging of priests and shortage of new vocations. Early members were Fr. John Schuster (chair), Dr. Bob Gall (co-chair), Terry Allen, Fr. Armand Lemire (Chancellor), Donna Mullen, Bill McGannon, Fr. Joaquim Pereira, Sr. Mary Rose Rawlinson, and Dr. Bob Shultz. Identified consultants included Brian Chikmoroff, Paul Dawson, Jim McKinley and Steve Stewart.
It was established as a Standing Commission in the Diocese following the Committee’s recommendations to the Bishop in the Commission’s Final Report of May 31, 2001. The new mandate was as follows:
‘In service to the Bishop, the Commission will assess and position the utilization of the resources of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Calgary, so that the members of our parishes are served most effectively, which enables them to be called forth in service.’
Fr. Jack Pereira was appointed Chair and members were Terry Allen, Br. Leon Jansen, Donna Mullan, and as consultors – Fr. John Schuster, Jim McKinlay and Sr. Mary Rose Rawlinson, FCJ
[See: RCDCA 288.5080]
Fr. Jack Pereira resigned as Chair of the DPC in August, 2003 due to pressure of work at his parish, Holy Spirit, Calgary. Fr. John took over once again.

Diocesan Board of Administration

  • Corporate body
  • 1968-1983

The Diocesan Board of Administration was directed by O’Byrne to review the employment practices of the Diocese following early 1980s committee report on the position of women in the Diocese.

Camp Cadicasu

  • Corporate body
  • 1922-

In 1922 the Calgary Council of the Knights of Columbus raised funds to establish a camp for boys in unfortunate circumstances. Camp Cadicasu was improved over the years and is used as a summer camp for youth and adult groups.

Calgary Inter-Faith Community Action Committee (CIFCAC)

  • Corporate body
  • 1969-1974

The Calgary Inter-Faith Community Action Committee was co-founded in 1969 by Fr. Patrick O’Byrne who became its executive director. This association of clergy and laity played a key role in such ecumenical initiatives as the Calgary Drop-In Centre, the Calgary Inter-Faith Food Bank, and the Interfaith Thrift Stores. It was a high profile organization in Alberta which also founded the Pastoral Institute, Carter Place, and the expanded religious studies programs and library holdings at the University of Calgary.
In 1977 the officers of the CIFCAC were: Rev. Leslie Files (President) – Presbyterian, Fr. Pat O’Byrne (Executive Director) – Catholic, Ms. Kay Chute (Secretary).
In 1978 CIFCAC started the Southern Alberta World Development Animation Project (SAWDAP).
In 1980 CIFCAC became an Association. It opened the Calgary Inter-Faith Food Bank in 1983. The idea had originated in Phoenix, Arizona and had already taken root in Edmonton. Fr. Jack Bastigal was instrumental in initiating the Food Bank in Calgary.

Mission Council

  • Corporate body
  • 1970-

The Vatican Council’s new understanding of mission was embraced early in the Diocese of Calgary. Mission Council was established in 1970 according to the wishes of Bishop Paul J. O’Byrne, with Fr. Joseph Toole playing a pivotal part. The immediate concern of the Council was to activate the relationship of the people of this Diocese with Fr. Malo in Peru and to take a complete look at the Diocese and its mission commitments as a whole. The first need was to conduct a mission education program and this was started in Fall 1971 with the aid of the Scarboro Foreign Mission Fathers.

In 1972 negotiations started with the Spiritan Fathers to promote joint efforts towards Mission work. Fr. Louis Connelly and Fr. Patrick O’Donoghue volunteered together with Fr. James M. Hagel, a diocesan priest. In March 1983 Fr. Toole was the Director of Mission Council and John Stoeber was Chairman of the Board of Directors. The Council worked with a National Mission Council and a Western Regional Council.

In 1969 the Council sent Fr. Louis Malo to assist in an Alberta-sponsored mission in Lima, Peru. He was the first native Calgary diocesan priest to enter missionary work. A small group of lay people formed a committee, the Alberta Mission Committee, to act as a liaison with Fr. Malo in Peru to assure him of moral and financial support. This major initiative was nurtured and overseen by Fr. Joe Toole. In 1980 Fr. Malo returned to the Diocese but was missioned again to South America in 1982 to Santa Cruz, Bolivia, where he remained for the rest of his life.

In 1974 Mission Council established a partnership with the Diocese of Chikwawa in Malawi. It was chosen because it lacked personnel – there were 19 priests for 61,000 people, and it was a young diocese. This was the first time in Canada that a Catholic diocese had joined an overseas missionary community in sending and sponsoring missionaries to the Global south. In the 1970s Spiritan priests served for the Diocese and in the 1980s Fr. Jim Hagel and Fr. Larry Bagnall served there. When the missionaries withdrew from Chikwawa in 1985 it was because the young diocese could now stand on its own.

In 1982 Mission Council gave a grant of $10,000 to CCIS to support the ‘mission’ work being done for refugees and immigrants who were temporarily housed at Cabrini House. In 1983 Mission Council committed itself to supply a counselor for the Calgary Interfaith Welcome and Recreation Centre.

In 1973 Mission Council became involved in fundraising, principally in October (Mission month) and Advent, which concentrated on Diocesan projects.

As mission awareness increased it became clear that home missions particularly the Indian reserves deserved attention. As of May 1976 the Council accepted responsibility of the financial support to the reserves in the Diocese as well as the Drop-In Centre, then known as the Inner City Project under the Council of Social Affairs. Mission Council helped sustain faith on the Tsuut’ina Reserve largely since 1980. In 1996 Sr. Annette John was parish administrator at Our Lady of Peace Parish.

In 1986 the Father Latour Native Pastoral Centre was established at 216 – 18th Ave. SW, Calgary. This was a year of new beginnings. The first lay missionaries, Patricia and Luis Flores were missioned by Bishop Paul in June to the Diocese of Tehuacan, Mexico. The family was involved in parish ministry in the rural area of Los Reyes Mezontla. A lay missionary formation program was created. Funding was also given to some ethnic communities – the Chinese, Spanish and Vietnamese and to a Native Leadership Training Program.

Aims are to assist and advise the bishop on mission matters, to coordinate all missionary efforts outside and inside the Diocese, foster greater lay involvement and raise and distribute the necessary funds for mission work in the Diocese. It differed from all other services in the Diocese as it had to raise its own budget.

As the Mission Council evolved its constitution was revised in 1978 and 1985.

Two missionaries were sent to the North West Territories (the MacKenzie Missionary Project) on July 1, 1989, prospective seminarian Roland and Mount Angel seminarian Hans Englehart.

Funding was obtained by asking groups like the Knights, Church Extension, Teachers’ Association and making general appeals. It also received an allocation from the Annual Bishop’s Appeal, $85,000 in 1993.

Sr. Cecily Graves FMM was working as a Native Catechist in 1993. In 1992 she was listed as being on Mission Council staff, and as Coordinator of Religious Instruction on the Reserves.

Council of Priests

  • Corporate body
  • 1968-

A new constitution of the Presbyteral Council of the RC Diocese of Calgary was signed by Bishop Paul O’Byrne and the Moderator and Vicar General, and chair of the Presbyteral Council V. Rev. John Schuster on May 11th, 1992 and revised on December 9th, 1997.
While the official name of the organization is the Presbyteral Council of the Diocese of Calgary, it is known as the Council of Priests. Governed by the Code of Canon Law its express purpose is to ‘provide a forum for the full and free discussion of issues of pastoral concern in the Diocese,’ and to aid the Bishop in the governance of the Diocese, seek out means for more effective ministry and to ‘be representative of the unity of the priests as a whole.’

Although all priests of the Diocese are said to have an ‘active and passive voice’ there are three categories of members who attend meetings. They are:

  1. Ex officio members; priests who are Vicars General, Chancellor, Moderator, members of the College of Consulters.
  2. Those appointed by the Bishop (maximum of five).
  3. Those elected by the presbyterate. Although the Bishop appoints the Deans for each deanery or pastoral zone, who are the deanery representatives on the Council, the dean may, with the Bishop’s permission chose to relinquish his place to another elected priest.

Although the bishop is not a member of the Council of Priests he is the ex officio President of the Council. The chair is normally the Moderator and the members elect a vice-chair and also, if required, a treasurer. The executive secretary is responsible for taking and distributing the minutes etc.

There will be no less than eight monthly meetings per year

Quorum is 2/3 Council membership. The executive committee – President, chair, vice-chair, and executive secretary prepare the agenda. Standing committees may be designated by the council according to its needs.

The Council is only consultative by its nature. Decisions of the Council are normally reached by consensus but if that is not possible in the view of the presider then a majority vote will decide.

The Council may be dissolved by the bishop but only after consultation with the Metropolitan. The Council ceases to exist and its functions revert to the College of Consultors when the Episcopal See becomes vacant.

The Council of Priests produced a newsletter 1968 to 1970.

Catholic Charities

  • Corporate body
  • 1956-

Bishop Carroll had been Vicar General in Toronto between 1933 and 1935. He had direct experience of Catholic social services in Toronto and once in Calgary recognized the need. Due to the scarcity of clergy he could do nothing until in 1945 he sent Fr. Pat O’Byrne to St. Louis University to study social services. On March 21, 1956 O’Byrne was appointed part-time executive secretary of the newly-established Diocesan Charities. This later became Catholic Charities. In the sixties its duties were to advise and co-ordinate the charitable work of the Catholic Women's League of Canada, Knights of Columbus etc., to relate Diocesan welfare work to that of the civic provincial and federal governments, and to community fund agencies etc., to counsel and advise individuals and families on relationships, refer cases to professionals. It had a board of directors who were lay Catholics. Offices were opened in Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Blairmore, and Claresholm. Thrift Stores were opened, for example, at Sacred Heart Parish, and connections were fostered ecumenically and with branches of government.
In 1961 Fr. John Kirley was sent to the University of Ottawa to train in social work. In 1964 he was appointed assistant executive secretary, and later director of the Catholic Family Services.
Klein renamed Catholic Charities the Diocesan Council of Social Agencies but in was reestablished as Catholic Charities in 1990 following Diocesan conflict with the United Way. Catholic Charities’ new mandate included collecting and distributing funds to agencies and organizations which upheld Catholic values.
“In 1996, Catholic Charities began accepting contributions made through the Donor Choice program of the United Way” (Inter-Office Memo from Fran Oleniuk to Bishop Henry, October 28, 1998, Subject: “United Way, Catholic Family Services & Catholic Charities Partnership). In 1997, Bishop O’Byrne “encouraged” Catholic Charities to “discuss” the possibility of “a joint project” with Catholic Family Services and the United Way (ibid.). After discussions with the United Way concerning the problem of prostitution among adolescents in the city, Catholic Charities and Catholic Family Services chose not to partner with the United Way and instead “decided upon” FAST (Families and Schools Together), an “early intervention program for children” established by Catholic Family Services (ibid.). In 1998, discussions with the United Way resumed “with the support of Bishop Henry” (ibid.).
[Winds of Change]

Catholic Bible College of Canada

  • Corporate body
  • 1979-1991

Established 1984 in Canmore. It was a project of the Western Bishops rather than the Diocese of Calgary.

Bellevue, St. Cyril

  • Corporate body
  • 1914-1997

After the community of Bellevue was established in 1903 when the mine was opened the Catholic population was visited by Oblates. Fr. Ronald Beaton came in 1914 and established the parish, built a church which was finished in 1915 on land donated by the Western Canadian Colliery Company. The title, St. Cyril was chosen by Fr. Beaton.

Airdrie, St. Paul

  • Corporate body
  • 1972-

This community had been a mission of Carstairs and then of the Forest Lawn Church, [Holy Trinity] in Calgary before Holy Trinity was erected as a parish. Then it reverted to being a mission of Carstairs. Its first Sunday Mass was celebrated by Fr. Jim Clancy in the Community Hall in September 1962. Not regularly celebrated until 1969 a Saturday afternoon Mass was celebrated in the Airdrie United Church until St. Paul was erected as a parish on May 7, 1972 with Fr. John Palardy, then Chancellor, attending if from Calgary.
[FBTC, 328]

Akenstadt, St. Nicholas

  • Corporate body
  • 1911-1915

A community of Dutch settlers farmed around the Akenstadt district north of Strathmore. A parish was canonically erected on Feb 16, 1911 and was called St. Nicholas. The land was donated by the C.P.R. Irrigation Company. The community was named for Fr. Van Aaken who came with the pioneers to this district. Despite this no church was every built there and the community continued to be served from Strathmore. Records indicate that Mass was celebrated at the Akenstadt School, or at the home of A.J.J. Weyers until 1915. Other pioneer family names include the Bartelens, Cammaerts, Damens, Gaertzs, Vanderswesterns and Voermans.

Office of the Tribunal

  • Corporate body
  • 1913-

A Tribunal is an essential part of any diocese, and handles all aspects of canon law brought before the Bishop. This includes cases related to marriage and sacraments. The Tribunal of the Diocese was established with the first bishop.

Beaton, Fr. Ronald

  • Person
  • 1874-1948

Ronald Beaton was born in Broad Cove, Inverness County, Nova Scotia on Dec 3, 1874. He studied at St. Francis Xavier University and in Roman and he was ordained for the Diocese of Antigonish on Aug 15, 1902, [or May 24] at St. John Lateran. Fr. Beaton came to Calgary in May 1914, encouraged by his Archbishop Neil McNeil, to whom Bishop McNally had appealed for priests. Beaton was sent straight to Coleman as the population of the mining communities of the Crow’s Nest Pass was growing and had only one priest. Beaton took charge of Blairmore, Frank, Bellevue, Hillcrest and other smaller missions, living in a hotel in Frank and later at the Belevue Hotel. A church was built in Bellevue with the help of parishioners and the first Mass was celebrated privately on May 1, 1915. Beaton lived in rooms over the sacristy and did his own housekeeping. He blessed the church on May 9 and dedicated it to St. Cyril after a church near Lochaber in Scotland, the home of his ancestors, and in recognition of the many Slavic peoples of the Pass. After three years in the Diocese, alone and labouring hard, his health was compromised. He was given permission to move to the Diocese of Victoria in 1916/1917. For his services there he was made Domestic Prelate in 1938 by Pope Pius XI. Monsigner Beaton died Mar 4, 1948.

Macdonald, A. Bernard

  • Person
  • 1876-1949

Born in Charlottetown, P.E.I. in 1876, Macdonald studied at St. Dunstan’s College there before receiving a Doctorate in Divinity in Rome. He was ordained in the Basilica of St. John Lateran by Cardinal Respighi in 1904. Difficulties arose when he sought to attach himself to the Diocese of St. Boniface and therefore he offered his services to Bishop McNally, who he knew from his hometown and probably later from Rome. Macdonald became the second secular priest to arrive in the new Diocese of Calgary on Aug 1, 1913. He was the first rector of St. Mary’s, holding the position until Fr. A. Newman arrived in 1914.
Fr. Macdonald was appointed Superintendent and Secretary Treasurer of the Separate School Board in 1915 until 1917. For the remaining time he was at St. Mary’s until his death he was curate and chaplain of the Keith Sanatorium and he contributed to the Catholic Press in Western Canada. He was over six feet tall, of athletic appearance and had a pleasant manner. He spoke four languages in addition to English, and had travelled extensively in Europe.
Macdonald died in Calgary on April 5, 1949 and is buried in St. Mary’s Cemetery.

Allerston, St. Isidore

  • Corporate body
  • 1911-

The town of Allerston was settled between 1911 and 1918. Mass was celebrated in the school house until 1912. Through the influence of Fr. J. J. Bidault, OMI, the construction of a Church in Allerston was underway. Bishop Legal came in a procession of twenty boys on horseback to bless the new Church on July 31, 1912. In honor of the farming community, the church was named after St. Isidore, the patron saint of farmers. The priests were shared with the community in Lethbridge from 1910- 1921 and from Milk River, 1921 onwards. In 1976, there were concerns regarding the structural integrity of the building and it was relocated onto a new foundation. (FBTC, 253 – 254; WoC, 281, 286-287)

Cuernavaca Center for Intercultural Dialog on Development (CCIDD)

  • Corporate body
  • 1977-

In May of 1977, the Cuernavaca Center for Intercultural Dialogue on Development welcomed its first group: students from the Divinity School at Duke University in North Carolina. Thereafter CCIDD received more than 500 religious, social justice, academic and professional groups from Canadian and U.S. colleges, universities, high schools, churches and non-governmental organizations. From direct encounters with Mexicans and other Latinos in their communities, homes and places of work and worship, some 10,000 people from the United States and Canada have learned about the roots of poverty and oppression in Latin America and Christian commitment to social transformation. CCIDD was founded by Ray Plankey, a lay missioner from the United States who had previously worked in Chile. He and others created CCIDD to “promote experiential understanding of rural and urban poverty in Latin America and the Christian struggle to transform society.” With encouragement and support from Cuernavaca’s progressive and ecumenically-minded Catholic Bishop Sergio Mendez Arceo, and leaders from other churches, CCIDD embarked upon its mission. From humble beginnings in rented hotel rooms, CCIDD moved to its present location in 1981 and expanded the site in 1985.

While CCIDD closed in August 2013, its basic mission is being continued by Augsburg College's Center for Global Education (CGE) (, which began through dialogue with the CCIDD founder Raymond Plankey back in the late 1970s and early 80s. CGE´s mission is to provide cross-cultural educational opportunities in order to foster critical analysis of local and global conditions so that personal and systemic change takes place, leading to a more just and sustainable world.

CGE is nationally recognized for its work in experiential, intercultural, and educational travel opportunities. More than 10,000 people have participated in our international travel seminars, which are well-known and respected for exposing travelers to a variety of points of view, especially the perspectives of those working for justice and human dignity. CGE also operates undergraduate summer and semester abroad programs in Mexico, Central America, and Southern Africa, which have served over 1,600 students from more than 300 institutions of higher education.

[Information from the Internet Archive Wayback Machine;]

Wilhelm, Joseph L., 1909-1995

  • Person
  • Nov 19, 1909 - Jun 25, 1995

Born on November 19, 1909 in Walkerton, Ontario. Having attended school in Walkerton, and St. Augustine's Seminary, Toronto, Wilhelm was ordained for the Diocese of Hamilton on June 9, 1934. He was assistant pastor at St. Mary's, Hamilton from 1934 to 1936, and at Christ the King Cathedral from 1936 until 1939, where he was also the Bishop's secretary. From 1939 to 1945 Wilhelm was Chaplain in the Canadian Army where he attained the rank of Major and won a Military Cross. After the war he studied for his Licentiate in Canon Law at the University of Ottawa and then served as pastor of Sts. Peter and Paul from 1947 until 1963. He was appointed vicar general and auxiliary to Bishop Carroll on June 28, 1963 and was ordained to the episcopate on August 22, 1963 in Hamilton by Cardinal McGuigan. When Bishop Carroll returned to Calgary after the first session of the Second Vatican Council, Bishop Wilhelm participated in the subsequent sessions of the Council in Bishop Carroll’s stead. During his time in Calgary, Bishop Wilhelm celebrated almost all the episcopal ceremonies and pontifical Masses. He also conferred almost all the ordinations and most of the confirmations. He became the Archbishop of Kingston in 1967.

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