Society of the Divine Word Chicago Province • Techny, Illinois
Office of Education, Recruitment & Formation


December 2018



The Son of God became a man
to enable men to become sons of God.

C.S. Lewis (Irish author, 1898-1963)


Special Interest


Vatican Releases 2018 Christmas Stamps
Jim Fair

The Christmas stamp for the Vatican was designed by an inmate of Opera Prison in Milan. Inmates were given this design opportunity based in part on the Pope's ongoing concern for the marginalized and abandoned. In a sense, it was an opportunity for the inmates to make a mark on Christmas. View...

Festive Christmas puzzle may baffle you all season long
Lee Moran
Huffington Post

This holiday-themed puzzle asks you to spot "the bear among the deer." Reporter Lee Moran for Huffington Post offers a tip but that may not be enough. Figure it out...

Why Church pews were invented
Philip Kosloski

Did you ever wonder why church pews were invented? Philip Kosloski,, has an explanation as well as a brief history of the furnishing. Surprisingly, pews are a rather recent invention in the United States.  Read...


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To Everyone,
Glad tidings and blessings of the Season

The Staff of the
Office of Education, Recruitment & Formation

Featured this month ...

You can Google "sabbaticals" or you can check out the section on sabbaticals, missionary programs, general education, and more at Resource Directory

Read the excellent, in-depth report on the current caravan by HOPE Border Observatory at Immigration Resources

Learn a few hacks (34, actually) to help you survive the winter season at Health & Wellness

We've issued grants for all sorts of events and there's a list of them at On the Trail

Learn about R-1 Approval vs. I-94 Retrieval Validity Dates at Immigration Alerts

Contemplate the advice on collaboration in light of the clergy sex abuse crisis at Child Protection

If you're looking for a good read, check out the books listed at Datebook Plus

Moving ahead ...

December 6-7, 2018
Thomas Merton Fifty Years Later, and Beyond
CTU is sponsoring a two-day conference commemorating the 50th anniversary of Thomas Merton’s death. It is open to all and will begin on Friday night when Richard Rohr, OFM speaks at 7 pm. Details...

December 8, 2018
Feast of the Immaculate Conception
Here are eight FAQs that you can share with your parishioners as you prepare to celebrate this solemnity.

December 12, 2018
Our Lady of Guadalupe
If you're unable to make the pilgrimage to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City—especially on December 12, you can send your prayer intentions digitally. Yes. Yes, you can.

January 18, 2019
March for Life 2019

The 46th March for Life in Washington, D.C., began as a small demonstration and rapidly grew to be the largest pro-life event in the world. The peaceful demonstration that has followed on this somber anniversary every year since 1973 is a witness to the truth concerning the greatest human rights violation of our time, legalized abortion on demand.

January 22-27, 2019
World Youth Day

The 34th World Youth Day is taking place in Panama City, Panama. The official WYD website for information and news is (English) or (Spanish)

February 8, 2019
International Day of Prayer and awareness against Human Trafficking

Catholics all over the world are encouraged to host or attend prayer services to create greater awareness about this phenomenon. The USCCB offers a program—SHEPHERD—that educates lay and religious leaders about human trafficking from a Catholic perspective, equipping them with needed knowledge and skills to combat forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation at the the local level. Learn more about SHEPHERD at

February 17, 2019
Random Acts of Kindness Day

The Random Acts of Kindness Organization believes that kindness starts with one: One compliment, one smile, one kind act, one person. The organization can help you celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Day with various lesson plans, kindness stories, ideas and videos. Check them out at
Random Acts of Kindness

March 27, 2019
National joe day

Enjoy a cup of “joe” with all of your friends named Joe, Jo, Joette, Joey, Joseph, Josephine, Johanna, Joann, Jodie or any variant of the name Joe every year on March 27th, National Joe Day. Here's a few more ideas to help you observe the

March 14
national potato chip day

National Potato Chip Day is celebrated every year on March 14. Here are 10 fun facts about this crunchy snack that should make the day even more tasty. Potato Chip Facts...

April 1, 2019
National One Cent Day
Pennywise and dollar foolish, a penny for your thoughts, and penny candy all have a place in our memories. Here are some facts about the memorable currency. Read...

April 27 - May 18, 2019
CTU Biblical & Study Program
Experience the Holy Lands of the Bible unlike any other. Your guide will be Fr. vanThanh Nguyen, SVD. Details...

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Office of Education, Recruitment & Formation
Society of the Divine Word   |   Chicago Province  |  1985 Waukegan Road  |  Techny, Illinois 60082  |  Tel: 847.272.2700