Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

Good day from St. Joseph’s Indian School!

This past week, two SCJ visitors from India visited St. Joseph’s to tour our campus and the surrounding reservations. Fr. Michael and Fr. Dharma were escorted by Fr. Dominic Peluse, SCJ and his associate, Pam Milczarski, from the Priests of the Sacred Heart office in Hales Corners, Wisconsin. Our guests came to visit since they are in the process of setting up a fundraising office in India to raise financial support for the SCJ ministries there. They have been traveling around the Province to see how our various offices send out mailings and stay in touch with Benefactors.

We began our Sacrament Classes this past Monday. Some of our students are preparing to receive all three of the Sacraments of Initiation—Baptism, 1st Communion and Confirmation! Our second graders who have already been baptized will prepare for 1st Communion. Some may even make a Profession of Faith and join the Church. Please keep these students in your prayers.

Fr. Anthony with three Lakota (Sioux) students at Our Lady of the Sioux Chapel in Chamberlain, SD.

Last year’s celebration of the Sacraments of Initiation was a success!

During this year’s powwow, visitors and friends who attended were able to write prayer requests. St. Joseph’s staff and students will pray for each and every request throughout this school year. Currently, the requests have been placed before the statue of the Sacred Heart in our Blessed Sacrament chapel.   When I make out the prayer list for each month, I’ll take some of the requests and add them to requests for prayer that come in over the year from other Benefactors. We are always happy to pray for any specific prayer request you may have since it is one way our students can say ‘thank you’ for your generosity.

St. Joseph’s was also happy to welcome the members of our Parent Advisory Council who gathered on the Monday after the powwow. They gather regularly to review policy and offer suggestions so we can keep fine tuning the programs we have here at St. Joseph’s.

As always, thank you for your kindness and generosity. We keep you in our prayers!

Have a great week!

Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ

Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

Greetings from St. Joseph’s Indian School in Chamberlain, South Dakota!

Summer is ‘officially’ over here in Chamberlain. The new city swimming pool is closed for the year and public school started this week.

Our high school students arrived on Sunday and participated in a two-day orientation program before school began on Wednesday. Our high school volleyball, cross country and football teams all have meets and games this week.

I recently attended the football team’s scrimmage and joined the coaches and players when they came out to St. Joseph’s for a team building meal at the Sheehy Home. It was a great night.

You may recall that I recently mentioned our 4-6 grade students can participate in football with the local team. They had their first practice on Tuesday evening. Our students were very excited to try on their equipment and hit the field. St. Joseph’s is honored to be able to host the practices and games as a way to help our students get to know their peers from the Chamberlain community better.

On Saturday morning, some of our students participated in the Chamberlain Youth Triathlon. They were able to swim, bike and run—all on campus. It was a fun experience for all!

A boy dances during St. Joseph's Annual Powwow.

Our Lakota (Sioux) students enjoy learning about their Native American culture and participating in our annual powwow.

We were scheduled to have an inipisweat lodge—  with our 7-8 grade boys on Saturday afternoon, but the high wind made it too dangerous to have a fire.

Please keep the members of the American Province of the Priests of the Sacred Heart in your prayers this week. Since our former Provincial, Fr. Steve Huffstetter, SCJ, was elected to our General Council in Rome, we are gathering this week to elect a new Provincial and Council. May the Holy Spirit guide our deliberations.

Our students are getting ready for our 39th Annual Powwow on September 19. They have several dance practices scheduled and staff members have been meeting to talk over plans to ensure another successful event. We have even started praying for good weather! We hope you will be able to attend. If you have any questions about the three day event, please feel free to call 1-800-584-9200 or visit www.stjo.org/powwow.

Have a great Thursday. May God’s blessings continue to be with you and yours.

Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ

Chaplain

Good day from St. Joseph’s Indian School!

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

The weather has continued to make for an interesting summer in central South Dakota. Last Sunday, several areas around us hit 100+ degrees. Added to the heat was smog from the fires burning in Canada. Though it has been hot, the landscape looks beautiful from all the rain we have been blessed with. Green is still the predominate color. Hopefully, we’ll continue to receive rain so the crops and grass flourish.
The campus is quiet now as the summer programs for our Lakota (Sioux) students are coming to an end. The younger students’ home finished this past Wednesday, and the high school home will end on Friday.
Next on the agenda will be orientation for St. Joseph’s new staff starting July 27. All staff will gather the week of August 3 for various meetings. The students will return August 9 and classes begin on August 10! Where has the summer gone?
Last weekend was special for some of those working in extended ministries supported by St. Joseph’s.
On Sunday, there was a special Mass in Marty, South Dakota to honor the Native American ministry in the Sioux Falls Diocese (which is celebrating its 125th anniversary). At the Mass, Deacon Steven McLaughlin gave an address. St. Joseph’s provided some transportation for parishioners from St. Joseph’s parish in Fort Thompson, South Dakota, which is staffed by members of the Priests of the Sacred Heart. That is the parish Deacon Steven is assigned to, but he also works at the other six parishes on the Crow Creek and Lower Brule Indian Reservations.
On Monday I was at a board meeting in Eagle Butte, South Dakota, where we have the women’s shelter and the youth residence. At the end of the meeting, Mr. John Lemke was honored for his 21 years of service as a board member. He is still active in the ministry as the treasurer.
I’ll be heading out this week to take part in my niece’s wedding in Colorado Springs this coming weekend. Sounds like most of my brothers and sisters are going to make it with their families, so it will be a mini-family reunion as well.
I hope you all have a great week. As a way of saying thanks for your generosity and many kindnesses, you will be remembered in our Monthly Novena of Masses, the 11th through the 19th.
Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ
Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, Fr. Joe and Mike were present when John received his award for years of service.

Fr. Anthony is pictures with Fr. Joseph Dean, SCJ pastor of the SCJ team covering the six parishes, Mr. Lemke, and Mr. Mike Tyrell, St. Joseph’s President.

Good day from St. Joseph’s Indian School!

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

After all the wild weather last weekend, things have calmed down a bit.  Branches keep coming down here and there around campus, but the majority of damage has been cleaned up by our grounds crew along with help of other St. Joseph’s maintenance staff.  It was really a team effort as electric saws, manual trimmers and hand-powered rakes were used to repair what Mother Nature tore apart.  There was some minor structural damage, but nothing of a serious nature.  We are grateful, but it is a shame that so many trees were damaged or lost completely. Several tree stumps still need to be removed and there will be

a lot of replanting to come. We received word from our fellow SCJs (Priests of the Sacred Heart) on the Lower Brule Indian Reservation that they too had high winds which brought down some trees. Thankfully, no buildings or cars were hit and everyone is safe.

Several trees were lost, but we’re thankful that no one was injured in last week’s storms.

Several trees were damaged or destroyed completely in last week’s storms.

You can tell the travel season is well underway by looking at the number of cars, tour buses, campers and RV’s in the parking lot at the Akta Lakota Museum & Cultural Center. I can see the parking lot from my office window and it is interesting to see visitors from all over the country stopping in to learn about the Lakota (Sioux) culture and walk through the new alumni and historical center that gives a brief overlook of St. Joseph’s history. If you would like to about others’ experiences to help you decide if your travel plans include a visit to St. Joseph’s Indian School, you can check us out on TripAdvisor.

The pool in our rec center is undergoing some repair. It is such a blessing and provides so many good things for our students. It is good exercise during the long South Dakota winter, helps fight childhood obesity, enables water safety and swimming lessons

St. Joseph’s pool provides exercise and lots of fun for the Lakota children.

The pool is such a blessing to St. Joseph’s students, and does so many good things for them!

to be conducted; and provides the opportunity for laughter, fun, friendships and fond memories to be established. The pool is also a benefit we can share with our staff and their families, as well as the local community. Stay tuned for details and updates!

A few weeks ago, the Chamberlain Junior Achievement program held its annual golf tournament hosting 16 teams. Participants helped raise over $3,000 which will go toward the various programs sponsored by Junior Achievement.  I’m happy to announce the St. Joseph’s team won the event with an 18 under par score of 54 over 18 holes. Congratulations!!

Hope everyone has a wonderful Independence Day weekend.  If you are using fireworks, please stay safe and enjoy your local festivities.

Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ

Chaplain

BREAKING NEWS!

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

Last week Fr. Steve Huffstetter, current Provincial of the Congregation of the Priests of the Sacred Heart and past Director at St. Joseph’s Indian School, was elected to our General Council in Rome!

Fr. Heiner Wilmer, SCJ, the German Provincial, was elected our new Superior General and Fr. Steve – along with the Provincials from Poland, the Congo/Cameroon and Venezuela – were elected to be members of his Council. This election means Fr. Steve will be part of the group leading the Congregation of the Priests of the Sacred Heart for the next six years. In late August, the American Province will have an election for a new Provincial and Council. Please keep Father Steve in your prayers as he answers this new call to service in our Congregation.
I am on the road, but in the process of returning to St. Joseph’s. This past weekend I had the chance to be in Lafayette and Carmel, Indiana to take part in the Deaconate Ordination of a young man I baptized nearly 25 years ago at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Houston, Texas. My introduction at the Sunday

1-Fr. Steve served as St. Joseph’s Director for 10 years before being elected Provincial for the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

Fr. Steve has been elected to the Priests of the Sacred Heart General Council in Rome!

Mass included that I was from St. Joseph’s Indian School in Chamberlain, South Dakota. At the end of the Mass, several people came up and mentioned they have been benefactors for many years.
I am always happy to meet those whose generosity makes our school possible for the Native American youngsters. It is rare you find yourself someplace where no one has heard about our work on the plains of South Dakota. Thank you for your support!
This week and last, children from the Crow Creek Indian Reservation are on St. Joseph’s campus daily to take part in our two-week summer day camp. Several of our staff

Many of St. Joseph’s high school students have summer jobs working for day camp.

Every day in June, children come from their reservation communities to take part in St. Joseph’s day camp.

and high school students help out. Activities include swimming, arts & crafts, Lakota Studies and more. The campers always enjoy the swimming pool. Starting next week, children from the Lower Brule Indian Reservation will have their turn.
St. Joseph’s kitchen staff is busy this month as they provide lunch and snacks for the campers. St. Joseph’s Indian School is also the site designated in the Chamberlain community for the hot lunch Program offered to any young people in the area. The kitchen crew will be preparing lunch daily for students for approximately six weeks. We enjoy the opportunity to serve and be involved in the local community.
I hope you all have a wonderful week and your summer is enjoyable and relaxing. I am anxious to get home and check in with the students staying on campus for our summer program. The City of Chamberlain renovated the local swimming pool and it’s just opened – I can’t wait to hear what they think about the new slides and swimming area!
Thanks again for all you do for the Lakota boys and girls! We keep you in our prayers.
Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ
Chaplain

Good day from St. Joseph’s Indian School,

It’s been another crazy week of spring weather in South Dakota! We had one day that broke an all-time record and hit 85 degrees last week, yet we are still having frosty cold mornings.  We are in desperate need of rain since the Chamberlain area is already in the early stages of drought. Today is cold and windy.

The Feast of St. Joseph, March 19, was the first day of the fourth quarter of the school year for the Lakota children. We had a nice prayer service geared toward

honoring St. Joseph in his role as guardian of Mary and Jesus.  March 19 also concluded our monthly Novena of Masses (the 11th through the 19th) for you, our benefactors.  The students keep you in prayer regularly and we include your intentions in our prayer requests at Sunday Mass.

Fr. Anthony sampled the monkey bread the sixth graders were baking in class.

Passing by the Personal Living Skills class, I was invited to sample the monkey bread the sixth grade students were baking. It was delicious!

When the prayer service was over, I jumped into my car and made a bee line east to St. Joseph’s Cathedral in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, to take part in the Chrism Mass for the diocese.  The oils used in the Sacraments for the up-coming year are blessed by the Bishop and then distributed to all the parishes and schools throughout the East River Diocese.  I brought the oils back and gave them to the religious education teachers who are preparing students to receive the Sacraments.

Last Friday as I was leaving the art room after visiting the second graders, I passed the Personal Living Skills classroom. It must have been my lucky day because I was invited to sample the monkey bread the sixth grade students were baking.  They did a great job – it tasted delicious!

We are in the planning stages for ‘SCJ Schools in Collaboration’ and there was a conference call yesterday. Schools in Collaboration unites the elementary schools ministered to by our Priests of the Sacred Heart (SCJ) community in Texas, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Mississippi. Our sister school in Germany was also part of the phone call.

Each year, one of our activities for Schools in Collaboration is a ‘battle of the books.’ Classes from each school read a number of the same books. Then the schools pair up to have a trivia contest based on what they read.  We are working toward having a joint prayer service in the next several weeks.

With Easter just around the corner, several of our students will receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confession this week.  If a student is not Catholic, they can still come in and talk over anything that may be troubling them.  It will also be the opportunity for those receiving Sacraments on April 12, 2015 to make their first confession.  Please keep these young people in your prayers.

I pray your season of Lent is proving to be a rewarding time for you spiritually as we strive to become more and more Christ-like.  Be assured of our continued prayers for you and your intentions.

Have a great week!

Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ

Chaplain

Good day from St. Joseph’s Indian School,

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

We’ve had a relatively mild winter in central South Dakota (we consider any day with sunshine and above zero temperatures “mild”), but that seems to be coming to an end.  The weather started terribly this morning with snow and very strong winds. St. Joseph’s even had a late start for the Lakota children!

Tomorrow’s weather is predicted to be extremely cold – it should be an interesting few days. But, I have also been told we will get a break at the end of the week with temps possibly up in the 40’s by the weekend. We’ll see what happens. I guess it is true that if you do not like the weather, wait a few moments and it will change!

This past Tuesday, we held the Staff Appreciation Breakfast, which is a way for the Priests of the Sacred Heart (SCJs) to say thank you to all the men and women who serve our missions so faithfully in a wide variety of ways.  It also allows the Lakota (Sioux) students to interact with those who work behind the scenes as well as staff members they encounter every day.  We had some trivia about Fr. Leo John Dehon, the founder of our SCJ community, and drew for door prizes.

Spring is right around the corner, which means some of our “winter” activities and programs are coming to an end.  Last Friday was the end of the bowling season.  Congratulations to the Rolling Thunder team and their captain Dave, one of our teachers, who captured First Place.

On our last day of bowling, the various teams were mixed together and we bowled 9 pin tap, which means the lanes were set so if you knocked down 9 pins it counted as a strike.  One of our high school girls, Irene, went crazy rolling scores of 245 and 251.  She even beat the bowling master, Andy, from the rec center who coordinated the league this year.  The students all did well and had fun.

The girls’ inter-city basketball season wrapped up on Sunday. There was a lot of improvement from when the season started. We hope friendships have been made that will continue through the years as these young ladies cross paths on the court or as they attend high school together in Chamberlain.

The Chamberlain High School girls’ basketball team is finished for the season as they lost their second round game in the state play-offs.  The boys’ team is the number 2 seed for their district and will not play until later this week when they’ll host one of the lower seeds.  If they win, they’ll play for the region championship and go on to the state tournament.  They ended their season against Stanley County from Ft. Pierre, South Dakota, this past Friday night and two of our St. Joseph’s players started — Adrian and Davis.

For Davis, it was a reward for how well he has played coming off the bench.  He showed his gratitude by having a double-double, in that he scored 11 points and had 10 rebounds to go along with several steals and assists. Great game, Davis!

Our St. Joseph’s boys’ basketball teams have also completed their season.  We hosted the sixth, seventh and eighth grade teams from Todd County this past Thursday.  The sixth grade won easily, but the seventh and eighth graders came up a bit short due to the Todd County press.  They made a run and got close but just could not get into the lead.  The seventh and eighth graders will finish their season today with a trip to Miller, South Dakota.

Be assured of our prayers for you; pilamaya thank you – for your continued support and interest in the Lakota children!

Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ

Chaplain

Happy New Year from all the students and staff at St. Joseph’s Indian School!

The SCJ house on St. Joseph’s campus enjoyed many visitors during the Parade of Homes.

Fr. Anthony, Terri and Fr. Bernie had a wonderful time during Chamberlain’s Parade of Homes!

I hope everyone’s New Year is off to a great start.  Our students and staff are in the process of working their way back to campus as the Christmas Break comes to an end.  The weather is making it a bit interesting today – we have snow and 11 degrees outside, along with blistering winds lowering the wind chill to well below zero. Word has already come from the Rosebud Indian Reservation that their bus will not be able to make it to St. Joseph’s today due to the weather. South Dakota could get up to 6 inches of snow or more before tomorrow. Please keep all those traveling in your prayers for a safe journey.

Since things were quiet around campus this past week, I would like to bring you up-to-date on some things that happened just before Christmas.

Pope Francis has dedicated 2015 to be a Year of Consecrated Life —honoring Sisters, Priests and Brothers who have made the commitment to religious life.  Our Provincial, Fr. Steve Huffstetter, SCJ, sent out a memo encouraging our Priests of the Sacred Heart (SCJ) communities to discern ways we could make ourselves visible to the people in our areas so as to give witness and invite them to know us better.

On December 14, 2014, Fr. Bernard Rosinski, SCJ and I, along with our housekeeper, Terri, took part in the annual Parade of Homes in the Chamberlain area.  It is a fundraiser for our local Cozard Memorial Library.  There were five homes and one local business that people could visit.

We hosted between 60-75 people and had a great time answering questions and showing off our home —beautiful, thanks to Terri’s wonderful sense of decorating.

Later that week, we invited St. Joseph’s staff to come up and see the decorations and enjoy some cookies and hot cider.  About 40-50 staff accepted our invite during this busy season.  It was a wonderful experience!

~~~

On the calendar for the week ahead is the start of the third quarter at school and our celebration of Christmas with the Lakota (Sioux) boys and girls. The students are looking forward to opening their gifts your generosity provided! I always enjoy visiting the homes and seeing the expressions of joy on the children’s faces as they open their gifts. We’ll be sure to take some pictures so you can see them in next week’s blog!

With 2015 upon us, I also wanted to remind you of the donor luncheons that will be coming up, giving you an opportunity to meet some of St. Joseph’s students and staff:

  • January 18-19, 2015: San Francisco, California
  • April 25-26, 2015 : Panama City, Florida
  • June 7-8, 2015: New York, New York

If you are able to attend and would like additional information, please call 1-800-584-9200. We look forward to spending some time with you!

Enjoy the week ahead.  May God’s blessings continue to be with you as in the New Year.  Thanks again for your support and encouragement of our Lakota students and all of us.  Be assured of our prayers for you and your special intentions.

Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ

Chaplain

Greetings from a chilly Chamberlain!

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

Throughout the school year, St. Joseph’s high school students visit various colleges and trade schools as they consider their future. Last week, several or our seniors, juniors and sophomores traveled to the University of South Dakota to learn more about the campus and classes offered there.

On the trip to USD, our students were thrilled to catch up with St. Joseph’s alumni Errol and Wyatt, who graduated in 2014 and now attend the University of South Dakota. It was great to have their insight about the transition from high school to college. Thanks guys!

You may have heard about the recent difficulties at Chicago’s airports. The ripple effect of this disruption in air travel made it all the way to South Dakota. Our team going to the donor luncheon in Chicago this past weekend had their flight cancelled. In an effort to keep our scheduled events, the decision was made to drive to Chicago.

Everything went great!

The Lakota (Sioux) students prepare for the future by visiting colleges and tech schools.

St. Joseph’s high school students visited USD and met up with alumni Errol and Wyatt.

Justina and Treyah did a great job speaking to our donors. The trip was made extra special by a visit from Fr. Steve Huffstetter, SCJ, past Director of St. Joseph’s and our current Provincial Superior. He joined the team for the Saturday lunch and sightseeing. Fr. Steve grew up near Chicago and was excited to show the team the local sights.

During the donor events we hold in different cities around the U.S., two of our Lakota (Sioux) students share with our benefactors how their generosity touches the lives of the children who attend St. Joseph’s.  Our next luncheon will be in San Francisco, California in January. You can register online or call 1-800-584-9200. We’d love to have you join us if you are in the area!

Within the next few days, St. Joseph’s will be hosting exchange students from Germany. In June, we send a couple students to visit Germany and France. In the fall, our European counterparts become our guests and visit St. Joseph’s Indian School.  They will attend a few days of classes with our students at Chamberlain High School, do some sightseeing and make a presentation of what life and school are like in Germany.

I hope that everyone has a great week.  May God continue to bless and reward you for your generosity.

Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ

Chaplain

Good afternoon!

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

As All Staff Orientation begins to unfold at St. Joseph’s Indian School, you can almost hear the pitter patter of little (and big!) feet. The Lakota (Sioux) students will arrive for the upcoming school year in less than a week! All our staff are busy making sure everything is ready.

The orientation process gives veterans and new staff the chance to get to know one another, share insights and to ask and answer questions. All these preparations make the opening of the school year easier for everyone when the homes open Sunday and the students arrive.

Houseparents will put final touches on their home to welcome the students to their home-away-from-home. Teachers also are getting their classrooms in order and doing last minute decorating to welcome the children.

St. Joseph’s Family Service Counselors work with houseparents, teachers and support staff to help everyone understand how they can best prepare themselves to deal with the various experiences and needs the students will have.

Orientation will cap off Thursday with a picnic for all employees to share some good food and camaraderie for the opening of the 2014-2015 school year.

As part of the effort to make our program at St. Joseph’s Indian School interesting and challenging, our Principal, Kathleen, took part in a conference on education sponsored by the Priests of the Sacred Heart (SCJs) this summer.  She and the principals of other SCJ schools from around the world met to share ideas and foster ways of promoting the spiritual values of Fr. Leo John Dehon, SCJ and Founder of the Congregation of the Priests of the Sacred Heart.

The Lakota children will return to St. Joseph’s on August 10, so homes and classrooms are being prepared.

St. Joseph’s houseparents are stocking cupboards and getting ready for the Lakota boys and girls to return for the start of the school year!

It has been a bit noisy around the Chamberlain community these last few days. Bikers are passing through on their way to the Black Hills and the annual Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota.

In the past we have had the opportunity to bless a number of the riders and their motorcycles.  We wish them safe travels and an enjoyable time!

The beautiful green of early summer is quickly fading to shades of tan and gold. Rain has been scarce lately. Hopefully, we will be blessed with rain between now and powwow so things will be nice and green for the event. We would love to have you join us for our annual powwow September 12-13. You can register to attend and find more information at stjo.org/powwow.

We hope you have a great week! Please keep us in your prayers as we prepare the arrival of our Native American students, and for safe travel of our students as they return for the upcoming school year! May God continue to bless and reward you for your generosity to for the care and education of the Lakota children attending St. Joseph’s Indian School.

Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ

Chaplain