Diocese of Joliet's 75th Anniversary

The Diocese of Joliet will celebrate its 75th anniversary on December 11, 2024.

The theme of the yearlong celebration beginning in December 2023 is “Founded in Faith, Called to Witness, Sent Forth to Serve.” We are asking that everyone join in this creative exercise to craft language for a prayer that can be easily prayed aloud in a group setting. The anniversary prayer will be translated into the various languages found in the diocese, so feel free to write your prayer in your native language.

This is a perfect project for religious education and Catholic school students, parents and parish organizations. Fire up your laptops and tablets or sharpen your pencils, and then call upon the Holy Spirit for inspiration in creating poetic anniversary prose.

Send your prayers to Sr. Sharon Stola, OSB, at the Office of Divine Worship at sstola@dioceseofjoliet.org or c/o the Blanchette Catholic Center, 16555 Weber Road, Crest Hill, IL 60403 by Thu, Jun 1. Include your name, address, phone number, email address and name of parish or institution. The 75th anniversary committee will look to your submissions for guidance in writing the prayer.

For more information or questions, contact Sr. Sharon at the above email or 815-221-6230.

Novena of Peace and Blessing of St. Francis Xavier Statue

In a few weeks we will begin our celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Establishment of the Diocese of Joliet with the Opening Mass on Mon, Dec 11. We have already sent out the tickets for a group of your parishioners to attend this Mass.  I would like to share with you some information about this, the Blessing of the Statue of the St. Francis Xavier at the Blanchette Catholic Center on Sun, Dec 3 at 1:00pm, the Novena to be prayed nine days before the Feast of St. Francis Xavier and our weekly prayers for the Diocese throughout 2024.

The Novena for St. Francis Xavier will begin on Sat, Nov 25 and conclude on Sun, Dec 3, information about this Novena and the Novena itself has been sent to the Parish Bulletin Editors for inclusion in your bulletin.  Please include each day’s prayer at your Masses during these days---suggestions for when to pray it would be at the beginning of the Mass or after the distribution of Holy Communion before the Prayer After Communion.  


An invitation to the Blessing of the Statue of St. Francis Xavier on Sun, Dec 3 at 1:00pm at the Blanchette Center in the announcements at all the Sunday Masses on Nov 19, 26 and Dec 3 would help to encourage people to come for this Blessing.

At the Opening Mass on Mon, Dec 11 we will pray our Anniversary Prayer together for the first time.   This is our Prayer of thanks and petition to be prayed throughout the entire year, thus we would ask that it be prayed at every Mass from Tue, Dec 12, 2023 through Sun, Dec 8, 2024.   You may want to use the same place during the Mass as you will do for the Novena before the Feast of St. Francis Xavier.

After the Opening Anniversary Mass you or someone you designate from your parish will pick up your parish Anniversary banner and Prayer Cards.  Along with these will be some suggestions for the liturgical celebrations of the Anniversary throughout the year and should you need a stand for the banner a suggestion for where to purchase it.

As part of our prayer during this Anniversary Year, we will be praying throughout the year for all the people of the Diocese, each Parish, Institution, Organization, Clergy and Religious.   These days of prayer will be found on the 75th Anniversary Parish Calendar.   In order to assist our parishes in praying on the given day for all in the Diocese, I will provide a Universal Prayer for each Sunday of the Anniversary Year beginning on Sun, Dec 31.  Along with these Sunday Universal Prayers there will be a listing for each day of the week when we will be remembering various people of the Diocese for you to use for the Universal Prayers at weekday Masses.


More information will be given to you with your parish packet to be picked up in the Cathedral Commons hallway after the Mass on Mon, Dec 11.  Should you have any questions please contact me and I will assist you as best I can.

Blessings be upon all of us as we begin our year celebration of our 75th Anniversary.