Statement of Most Reverend R. Daniel Conlon, Bishop of the Diocese of Joliet in Illinois, Regarding the Redefinition of Civil Marriage in Illinois


November 6, 2013

Statement of Most Reverend R. Daniel Conlon,
Bishop of the Diocese of Joliet in Illinois,
Regarding the Redefinition of Civil Marriage in Illinois

JOLIET, IL—Today, I stand in unison with my fellow Catholic Bishops and other clergy expressing my disappointment in the redefinition of civil marriage in Illinois. The Catholic Church deeply values and cherishes marriage, as a union between a man and a woman. When Pope Francis addressed a similar situation as Archbishop of Buenos Aires in June, 2010, he wrote “The Argentine people must face, in the next few weeks, a situation whose result may gravely harm the family. It is the bill on matrimony of persons of the same sex. The identity of the family, and its survival, are in jeopardy here: father, mother, and children. The life of so many children who will be discriminated beforehand due to the lack of human maturity that God willed them to have a father and a mother is in jeopardy. A clear rejection of the law of God, engraved in our hearts, is in jeopardy…Let us not be naïve: it is not a simple political struggle; it is an intention [which is] destructive of the plan of God. It is not a mere legislative project (this is a mere instrument), but rather a ‘move’ of the father of lies who wishes to confuse and deceive the children of God.” (“Father of lies” refers to the devil, as mentioned by Jesus in the Gospel of John.)

While this new law redefines marriage for the state, it does nothing to change what is revealed to us by God for the good of human society.


Joliet diocese moving to new diggs in Crest Hill. Smart move, long overdue!

The diocese expects to move most of its offices to Crest Hill in about a year.

Diocese spokesman Doug Delaney said the deal in Crest Hill has not closed. “But,” he said, “money has been paid, and an agreement has been made.”

The property suits the diocese needs in many ways, Delaney said.

Primarily, he said, it provides enough space to put the diocese offices all in one spot. Diocesan administrative functions now are spread around three locations. The bishop’s office and other administrative functions are on the near West Side of Joliet. Catholic Charities is located in downtown Joliet. But most diocesan employees work out of the St. Charles Borromeo Pastoral Center next to Lewis University in Romeoville.

The diocese expects to sell the pastoral center building to Lewis at a price that could cover the cost of acquiring the strip mall on Weber Road.

Also, Delaney said, the Crest Hill location offers an accessible spot for a diocese that goes through seven counties as far north as DuPage and as far south as Iroquois.

Of course, there’s some controversy…

Seen on the web: Abuse cover up claimed to be going on in Diocese of Joliet?

Reader comment re: Crisis Magazine article on KC Bishop Finn
A victim of recent Diocesan abuse 10/29/2011 11:38 am

The Diocese of Joliet in Illinois is also covering up an abuser is continues to be employed on staff in spite of numerous written and verbal complaints.  No secular organization would allow this person’s behavior to continue more than 5 minutes, yet he has been allowed to continue for over 5 years.

Any staff person attempting to address his sexual, physical, and verbal abuses has been threatened into silence.  Bishop Conlon is at least consistent in his response to this issue, in that he has a long history of coverups in his previous diocese of Stuebenville.


Editor’s note: Does anyone know more about these allegations? If true, this is very serious. If false, calumnious. Either way, it needs to be properly addressed … and quickly! Please let me know.

The Diocese of Joliet Vocation Office is sponsoring a raffle to help send our seminarians to World Youth Day in Spain

The Diocese of Joliet Vocation Office is sponsoring a raffle to help send our seminarians to World Youth Day in Spain.

Tickets are $10 each.

Winning prizes ($3000, $1500 and $500)
will be drawn at the Seminarian Sendoff Dinner
on August 7, 2011.
Winners do not need to be present.

This trip is a great opportunity for our seminarians to celebrate Mass with Pope Benedict XVI, and to meet their fellow Catholic youth, from all over the world.

Please consider supporting the trip by buying a raffle ticket and praying for their safety, as they travel.

Make checks payable to:

Diocese of Joliet Vocation Office

c/o Fr. Burke Masters

101 West Airport Road

Romeoville, IL 60446

Yo qualify for the raffle, your payment must arrive no later than August 1, 2011.

Thank you for your support!

Official announcement by the Diocese of Joliet on Bishop Conlon appointment

Bishop-designate Conlon stated. “I consider it a great privilege to be named as Bishop of the Diocese of Joliet with its rich history and I look forward to working with those who generously share their gifts to support the many ministries in this diocese. I look forward to a bright future in this vibrant and growing church. Thank you for your warm welcome.”

Read more (PDF)

Bishop R. Daniel Conlon’s Remarks to Steubenville Faithful – May 17, 2011


Nine years is long enough for someone to settle into a place. Nine years is more than enough time for a pastor to become attached to a community of faith. After nine years, the Diocese of Steubenville is very much my place and my community. I even have a plot picked out in Mt. Calvary Cemetery.

The Holy Spirit and our Holy Father on earth, Pope Benedict XVI, have other ideas. On Easter Tuesday, April 26, Archbishop Pietro Sambi, the Apostolic Nuncio to the United States called on behalf of the Pope to ask that I serve as the bishop of Joliet in Illinois. Relying on God’s grace and wisdom, I said yes. On July 14 I will be installed in Joliet’s cathedral of St. Raymond.

I came to the Diocese of Steubenville in 2002 as a complete stranger. Yet, I came as a member of the Body of Christ and a priest of the one priesthood of Jesus Christ. So, I never truly felt like a stranger.

We are all pilgrims on the journey to heaven. On holy pilgrimages there are no strangers, just brothers and sisters united in the Spirit, moving in and out of each others’ lives. We hail each other, pray together, care for one another and give witness of faith to those we encounter along the way.

Just as I broke off from the Cincinnati contingent of this grand pilgrimage nine years ago, now I must break off from the Steubenville contingent and join up with the pilgrims from Joliet.

As to personal feelings, this will not be easy. Separating from the company of such dedicated priests and deacons, setting aside the hopes bound up with seminarians, deacon candidates and new religious communities, missing the talented, hard-working chancery personnel, leaving off so many fruitful and promising enterprises, and losing contact with the thousands of good people throughout our thirteen counties—how incredibly blessed I have been.

Until July 14, Pope Benedict has provided that I will serve as Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Steubenville. Then, the College of Consultors, a pre-designated group of priests, will elect a priest of the diocese to serve as administrator until a new bishop arrives. That may not be for several months.

So, we pilgrims walk on, by faith not by sight. Some days our progress is easy and joy-filled. Some days we experience delay and pain. We go together, though, and Christ leads the way, holding high the banner of victory, ironically, his cross.

I am exuberantly grateful to God for these nine years. I am grateful to the people of the Diocese of Steubenville for accepting me and joining with me to do the Lord’s work. As the hymn proclaims, “How can I keep from singing?”—even as I walk toward a new part of the pilgrimage to heaven.

New bishop of Joliet, IL: Bishop R. Daniel Conlon of Steubenville, Ohio.

Resolving a much-awaited opening at the edges of Chicagoland, at Roman Noon today, B16 named Bishop R. Daniel Conlon, 63, head of Ohio’s Steubenville church since 2002, as bishop of Joliet.

R. Daniel Conlon will be the fifth bishop for the Joliet diocese, which includes 625,000 Catholics throughout seven counties, in northeast Illinois

Installation has been scheduled for 14 July in Joliet’s Cathedral of St. Raymond Nonnatus.

Interesting statistics:

Steubenville diocese –
40,411 Catholics out of 513,734 people. (8% Catholic)

Joliet diocese –
625,189 Catholics out of 1,734,304 people. (36% Catholic)

Read more

Diocese of Steubenville website

The story of St. Raymond, for whom the Cathedral in Joliet, Illinois is named

Detailed summary of all articles on this subject

Lenten Regulations for the Diocese of Joliet, Illinois

No meat allowed:
Ash Wednesday, Good Friday, and all the Fridays of Lent.
Applies only to those over the age of 14.

Fasting – eating only one full meal per day:
Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.
Applies only to those from 18 to 59 years of age.
Two other meals, sufficient to maintain strength,
may be taken according to each one’s needs,
but together they should not equal another full meal.
Eating between meals is not permitted on these two days,
but liquids, including water, milk, and fruit juices, are allowed.

When health or ability to work would be seriously affected, the law does not oblige.

To disregard completely the law of fast and abstinence
is seriously sinful.

The Bottom Line:
Eat only one, meatless meal on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. Abstain from meat (while otherwise, eating normally) on every other Friday, and you should be good to go,
for the next 40 days.

Sundays are not part of Lent. Eat what you want!

Auxiliary Bishop Joseph Siegel of the Diocese of Joliet: The Church must continue to point out our teaching…”

Bishop Siegel, suggested that the many Presidential appointments of Catholics who oppose the right to life is a “very sad” situation.  It is, he said, “Not living out faith authentically. Not witnessing in the public forum to their faith”

“Can’t have it both ways,” he added.  The Church must, he said continue to “point out our teaching, keep it firm, saying this is what it means to be a faithful Catholic.”

“If you’re not abiding by that, not legislating that way, not supporting that, then it’s hard to play yourself as a faithful Catholic,” added Bishop Siegel. “If you’re not following something essential as the Gospel of life and the teachings on life.”

Read more

Operation Formation December 9, Speaker: Rev. John Belmonte, Diocese of Joliet Catholic School Superintendent

Link to Flier (PDF)

Bishop Sartain of Joliet, IL to become new Archbishop of Seattle, WA

In a move that’s as much masterstroke as surprise (at least, to many), the Pope has named J. Peter Sartain, 58, bishop of Joliet since 2006, as archbishop of Seattle.

Envisioned by many as an optimal choice to replace Cardinal Francis George in Chicago after the outgoing Bench-Chief reaches the retirement age in early 2012, the much-celebrated prelate instead succeeds Archbishop Alex Brunett, who passed the canonical age-limit in January 2009. Founded in 1850 and made an archdiocese in 1951, today’s Emerald City church encompasses all of Washington State west of the Cascades — some 25,000 square miles — and a Catholic population that, by the chancery numbers, stands in excess of 900,000.

Read more

On June 6th, Bishop J. Peter Sartain ordained five men at the Cathedral of St. Raymond for the Diocese of Joliet.

From left to right: Father Stephen Eickhoff; Father Raed Bader; Father Josh Miller; Bishop Sartain; Father John Lindsey; and Father Jason Stone.

Please remember to pray for our new priests (and for our bishops).


Bishop Sartain removes Bloomingdale priest for homosexual conduct

A Bloomingdale priest accused by a 21-year-old male of sexually inappropriate conduct has been removed from St. Isidore Catholic Church in Bloomingdale, church officials confirmed Wednesday.

A DuPage County State’s Attorney investigation into the matter did not find enough evidence to pursue criminal charges against Rev. Jerry Simonelli, said Tom Norton, the church’s executive administrator. However, during the Diocese of Joliet’s investigation, officials discovered that Simonelli had violated the church’s vow of celibacy in a past relationship with a man, according to Bishop J. Peter Sartain’s executive assistant Doug Delaney.

Read more

“Naked progressivism” in the Joliet Diocese: What happened to the real Anima Christi Prayer?

What Happened to the REAL Anima Christi Prayer?

The Diocese of Joliet, Illinois website explains:

This year as we celebrate the diocesan “Year of the Eucharist,” we have chosen “One in the Body and Blood of the Lord” as the theme for the 2010 Catholic Ministries Annual Appeal. It is a very appropriate choice, for Psalm 34 invites us to “Taste and See the Goodness of the Lord.”

Then, we are given a prayer called the Anima Christi, which is a totally new (Jesuit) version of what has up until just now, always been an old favorite of traditional Catholics, going way back to the 14th century.

The original Anima Christi prayer goes like this:

Soul of Christ, sanctify me
Body of Christ, save me
Blood of Christ, inebriate me
Water from Christ’s side, wash me
Passion of Christ, strengthen me
O good Jesus, hear me
Within Thy wounds hide me
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee
From the malicious enemy defend me
In the hour of my death call me
And bid me come unto Thee
That I may praise Thee with Thy saints

and with Thy angels
Forever and ever

The NEW (Joliet progressive version) goes like this:

Jesus, may all that is you flow into me.
May your Body and Blood be my food and drink.
May your passion and death be my strength and life.
Jesus, with you by my side enough has been given.
May the shelter I seek be the shadow of your cross.
Let me not run from the love which you offer,
but hold me safe from the forces of evil.
On each of my dyings shed your light and your love.
Keep calling to me until that day comes,
when, with your saints, I may praise you forever. Amen.

Lord Jesus, Bread of Life and Covenant of Love –
Nourish us with your Body and Blood

Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament –
Pray for us

Perhaps you don’t care if the Catholic Church
swaps out things like prayers with impunity, but I do.
If you agree, respectfully mention it to your pastor,
or send an email to the diocese:

Tell them: “Naked progressivism,
and change for the sake of change”
may still constitute a semi-popular political movement,
but it no longer has any place in the Holy Catholic Church.

3rd Annual Mass for Life, 2 PM, January 10, Cathedral of St. Raymond, Joliet, IL

All are invited to Bishop Sartain’s 3rd Annual Mass for Life, which will be offered at the Cathedral of St. Raymond, on Sunday, January 10, 2010, at 2:00 PM.

A reception will follow immediately after Mass.

A special blessing will be given to those who are attending the March for Life in Washington, DC.

For further information please contact the Life Office at (630) 718-2121.

Joliet Diocese Women’s Cursillo Coming Up: February 4-7

Catholic Ladies,

Consider this your personal invitation to experience the next Women’s Cursillo Weekend (February 4-7 at the St. Charles  Borromeo Pastoral Center, Romeoville, IL).

Cursillo is a one-time event in the life of every Catholic … male or female … lay person, priest, or bishop.

All have “made” their own personal Cursillo in the very same way, so you’ll be in very good company.

Cursillo brings forth the joy of God’s inestimable love in a beautiful way that you may have never before experienced.

The Cursillo begins on Thursday evening and extends through early Sunday evening. 3 Days and nights of extraordinary grace, food, fellowship and fun, followed by a lifetime (the 4th Day) as an essential participant in one of the most significant Catholic “movements” of our time. You can also bring your friends.

Bishop Sartain is an active “Cursillista” and many of your fellow parishioners are too. You would probably be amazed at how many Catholics, all around the world, have already “made” their Cursillo … and having done so, changed their lives, forever.

No kidding. This is absolutely true. Ask around.

Like most people, you are probably thinking that Thursday through Sunday constitutes some pretty “heavy” spiritual “lifting” … and that you may not be cut out for that sort of thing.

I can tell you from experience that you would be quite right on the first count … and very wrong on the second.

You may also think that it would be impossible to get away for three days and nights, or that the $225 cost is not affordable … but neither of these constitutes a real obstacle, since lack of funds has never prevented anyone from attending a Cursillo … and since God has a particular “way” of exquisitely working out matters of timing.

All of the details will be handled for you. There is very little that you need to do, other than making yourself available. Even your transportation to and from the Cursillo site will be arranged.

Read much more about Cursillo here

And here

God loves you. God will provide. It’s time to relax and rejoice in Jesus Christ … through your own personal Cursillo experience.

This is for you

Please feel free to contact me with any questions. (Men … please forward this to your wives and daughters.)

Merry Christmas to all,

Doug Lawrence
Men’s 105th Cursillo, Spring 2004


Dear Brothers and Sisters

Welcome to “Catholics Come Home Joliet!” You may be aware that the Diocese of Joliet shares this important project with the Archdiocese of Chicago and the Diocese of Rockford, and I am pleased that you have found your way to our website. Perhaps you have seen one of the many television spots we are sponsoring during December and January in English, Spanish and Polish. If not, you can view them on this website! In a sense, the Lord Jesus is constantly calling all of us to “Come Home.” I like to reflect on the number of times he issued similar invitations: “Come, and you will see!” “Come, follow me!” “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men!” “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.” And to St. Peter, when he saw Jesus walking on the water and asked if he could do the same, Jesus answered confidently, “Come!”

As your bishop, with Jesus I say to you, “Come! Come see with the eyes of faith. Come follow in Jesus’ footsteps. Come help gather more disciples for the Lord. Come find rest and peace. Come learn of the Lord’s compassion and forgiveness of sin. Come find how God’s grace helps us do even what seems impossible!”

Read more

Pope Names Pastor to be Auxiliary Bishop of Joliet in Illinois

ppsartainsiegel281009Bishop Sartain/Auxiliary Bishop-Elect Siegel

WASHINGTON—Pope Benedict XVI named Father Joseph M. Siegel, 46, Pastor of Visitation Parish in Elmhurst, Illinois, as Auxiliary Bishop of Joliet in Illinois and titular Bishop of Pupiana.

Publication of the appointment was announced in Washington, October 28, by Archbishop Pietro Sambi, apostolic nuncio to the United States.

Joseph Siegel was born July 18, 1963, in Joliet. He attended St. Meinrad Seminary College and then the North American College in Rome, 1984-1988. In Rome he attended the Gregorian University and the Angelicum University. He was ordained a priest for the Joliet Diocese in 1988. He earned a Licentiate in Sacred Theology in 1990, from the University of St. Mary of the Lake/ Mundelein Seminary.

Assignments after ordination included Associate Pastor, St. Isidore Parish, Bloomingdale, Illinois, 1988-1994; Associate Pastor, St. Mary Parish, Plainfield, Illinois, 1994-1998; Parochial Vicar, St. Mary Nativity Parish, Joliet, 1998-2000; Parochial Vicar, Cathedral of St. Raymond, Joliet, and Visitation Parish 2004 until now.

The Joliet Diocese includes 4,218 square miles. The total population of the diocese is estimated at 1,888,772 people, with 652,770, or 35 percent, of them Catholic.

Link here

JOLIET, ILLINOIS (October 28, 2009)

His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, today named Fr. Joseph Siegel as a new auxiliary Bishop for the Diocese of Joliet.

In making the announcement Bishop J. Peter Sartain said: “I was delighted to learn that Pope Benedict had named Fr. Joseph Siegel as Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Joliet. Fr. Siegel is a native son with deep roots in the city of Joliet and the entire diocese, and he has served a number of parishes with great love since his ordination to the priesthood in 1988. He is deeply respected by his parishioners and brother priests, and he will bring many gifts to this new ministry. I personally look forward to working in collaboration with him in the pastoral care of our people. I express my gratitude to Pope Benedict for this appointment and to Fr. Siegel for accepting with generosity and humility a surprising call from God once again.”
He will be ordained Bishop on Tuesday, January 19, 2010 at 2:00 p.m. at the Cathedral of St. Raymond in Joliet.

Bishop-Elect Siegel will hold the title of auxiliary bishop, meaning he will assist Bishop Sartain in the pastoral administration of the Diocese of Joliet. He will receive the office of teaching, governing and sanctifying as a bishop. He will exercise his ministry in union with the Pope and his fellow bishops throughout the world. An auxiliary bishop is also given a “titular see” since he is not a diocesan bishop. The “titular see” is usually the name of a diocese somewhere in the world that has been suppressed at some time in the past (i.e., absorbed into another diocese.) It is an honorary title given to the Bishop to remember in prayer those who have gone before us. Bishop Siegel’s titular diocese will be Pupiana, northern Africa, in modern-day Tunisia, near the ancient city of Carthage.

Bishop-elect Siegel commented: “I was both humbled and honored when I received the unexpected news that Pope Benedict had named me to serve as auxiliary bishop of Joliet. I am deeply grateful to our Holy Father and Bishop Sartain and I pray that I will be worthy of the trust they have placed in me as I strive to be a faithful shepherd after the heart of Jesus. I ask for the prayers of our clergy, religious and laity that I may serve the people of this Diocese with love, wisdom and courage.”

Fr. Siegel, 46, was born in Joliet, Illinois and was raised on a farm in Lockport Township. He was baptized at the Cathedral of St. Raymond Nonnatus and attended the parish grammar school. He attended St. Charles Borromeo High School Seminary in Romeoville from 1977-1980 and continued his studies at St. Meinrad Seminary College in Indiana, where he graduated magna cum laude with a degree in history in 1984. He completed his seminary formation at the Pontifical North American College in Rome from 1984-1988, where he earned his Baccalaureate in Sacred Theology (STB) cum laude from the Pontifical Gregorian University in 1987, and continued his theological studies at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas. He was ordained to the diaconate by William Cardinal Baum at the Basilica of St. Peter in Vatican City on April 14, 1988. Fr. Siegel returned home to be ordained to the priesthood on June 4, 1988 by the Most Rev. Joseph Imesch at the Cathedral of St. Raymond Nonnatus in Joliet. After ordination, Fr. Siegel completed his studies in systematic theology at the University of St. Mary of the Lake, Mundelein, IL, earning a Licentiate in Sacred Theology (STL) in 1990.

Fr. Siegel was assigned as parochial vicar at St. Isidore Parish, Bloomingdale, St. Mary Immaculate Parish, Plainfield , St. Mary Nativity Parish, Joliet and the Cathedral of St. Raymond Nonnatus, where he also served as diocesan master of ceremonies. He has been pastor at Visitation Parish in Elmhurst since 2004.

In addition to his parish ministry, Fr. Siegel has also served the diocese in many capacities. He has been a member of the Presbyteral Council for nine years, including three years as chairman and was appointed to the Diocesan Board of Consultors. He has been Director of Continuing Formation for Priests, a member of the Diocesan Vocation Board, the Priest Personnel Board and served as the Dean of Eastern Will County. With the Catholic Conference of Illinois, he served on the Executive Committee as a priest representative and was chairman of the Catholics for Life Department. Father is currently chair of the Steering Committee for the Joliet Diocesan Year of the Eucharist and Eucharistic Congress and is a member of the Bishop’s Respect Life Advisory Board. He is a Fourth Degree Knight of Columbus and a member of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre.

In his spare time, Fr. Siegel enjoys playing the piano and organ, reading, classical music and Chicago Cubs baseball.
Fr. Siegel is the youngest of nine children. His parents, Francis and Marie Siegel, are deceased. His aunt, Sr. M. Clotine Siegel, OSF, was a Joliet Franciscan.




Bishop Peter Sartain, Bishop of Joliet, will be offering an “Online
Lenten Retreat” starting Ash Wednesday. The Bishop will be presenting
two short recorded talks each week, along with several scripture
passages for further reflection, which will assist and inspire
parishioners to begin an authentic journey of conversion and a renewed
commitment to prayer, penitence, almsgiving, and self denial.

Click to visit the Diocese of Joliet website

Lent FAQ’s

Submitted by Margaret G.