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Father Mark Kopacz dies at 49

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Staff reporter

Father Mark Kopacz, a native of Poland who served in the Diocese of Wilmington since his ordination in 1992, died Dec. 27. He was 49.

The funeral Mass for Father Kopacz was Jan. 2 at St. Hedwig Church in Wilmington. Interment was at All Saints Cemetery.

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‘Easy A’ led to a CSI-like career with the military

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Staff reporter

 WILMINGTON – No, she doesn’t work in the dark. And she doesn’t chase bad guys.

But the work Debra Prince Zinni does is similar to what is shown on the hit CBS television franchise “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.” A forensic anthropologist, Prince Zinni works at the Joint Prisoners of War Central Identification Lab in Hawaii, where she is part of a team that tries to account for all Americans missing as a result of past wars.

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Bishop names Father Nolan vicar for priests

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Dialog Editor

Bishop Malooly has appointed Father Timothy M. Nolan, 45, vicar for priests of the Diocese of Wilmington. Father Nolan will continue serving as pastor of Corpus Christi Parish in Elsmere.

With the appointment, effective Jan. 15, Msgr. Clement P. Lemon ends nearly 25 years as vicar for priests in the diocese. Msgr. Lemon, 74, will continue to serve as pastor of Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish in Wilmington.

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Oblates’ founder to be beatified

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Dialog Editor

Pope Benedict cleared the way for the beatification of the founder of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales on Dec. 19 when he authorized the approval of a miracle attributed to Father Louis Brisson.

Beatification means Father Brisson will be know as “Blessed.” In causes for sainthood, beatification is the step before canonization.

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Family, friends keep Nativity scene in Wilmington Christmas

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Staff reporter

A handcrafted Nativity scene has greeted Christmastime visitors to Wilmington’s Rodney Square for decades, thanks to volunteers who have kept the tradition alive.

The practice of having the Nativity depicted in the square was started in 1951 by the late Edward B. Sledz and his fellow Knights of Columbus at St. John the Beloved Parish. Calling the project, “The Committee to Keep Christ in Christmas,” they volunteered their time and raised money to present the crèche in the city’s main square.

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Bishop greets Bayard House residents at Advent dinner

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Bishop Malooly offers a helping hand, as well as a gift, to Kala Sutton as she feeds her one-week old son Alijah during the annual Advent dinner at Bayard House on Dec. 14.

The evening started with a prayer service at St. Thomas the Apostle Church, followed by dinner at Bayard House with residents, their children, and Catholic Charities and Bayard House staff.

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Bishop tells prisoners Jesus was born for all

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Dialog Editor

Bishop Malooly proclaimed the joy of Christmas during Masses at two prisons Dec. 17 and 19 and brought the inmates the message that Jesus was born for all and wants to draw everyone closer to him.

The bishop’s Masses were on Dec. 17 at Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrna and Dec. 19 at Baylor Women’s Correctional Institution in New Castle.

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St. E’s Eric Patton named winner of DeLucia Award

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WILMINGTON – Eric Patton, a two-way starter for the St. Elizabeth High School football team, was named the recipient of the 2011 Michael DeLucia Sportsmanship Award, presented annually to a senior football player from a Delaware Catholic high school. The award, which has been given for 40 years, goes to a player “who has exemplified outstanding performance, attitude and character on and off the field.”

Eric Patton receives the Michael DeLucia Sportsmanship Award from Tom DeLucia. The award goes to a senior football player from a Catholic high school in Delaware for his actions on and off the field. Submitted photo.

Patton, a linebacker and running back, was named the defensive player of the year for Delaware for the second straight season by the Delaware Interscholastic Football Coaches Association. He recorded 94 tackles on defense, and on offense, he rushed for 1,348 yards and 16 touchdowns in only eight games. He was first-team all-state and all-Catholic on both offense and defense.

The award was presented Monday by Tom DeLucia. He and his wife, Pat, of Wilmington, established the award in honor of their son, Michael, who died from meningitis in 1971 at age 18 months.

 

Previous winners

2010 Ryan Kilpatrick, Salesianum

2009 AJ Dillione, Salesianum; Chaz Malewski, St. Mark’s

2008 Andrew Schieffer, Salesianum; Corey Olsen, St. Mark’s

2007 Frank Kurek, Archmere; Sonny Durham, St. Elizabeth

2006 Andrew Szczerba, Salesianum

2005 Nicholas Dominelli, Salesianum

2004 Gene DelleDonne, Salesianum; Dan Meany, Archmere

2003 Joey Wright, St. Mark’s

2002 Ryan Stearrett, St. Elizabeth

2001 Thomas J. Weiss, Archmere

2000 Jack Gillespie, Salesianum; Jeff Fletcher, St. Elizabeth

1999 Louis Wright, St. Mark’s; Matt Swarter, St. Elizabeth

1998 Edsel Torres, Archmere

1997 Kevin Coen, Salesianum

1996 Mike Watkins, St. Mark’s

1995 Jason Maxwell, Salesianum

1994 Rich Conway, St. Elizabeth

1993 Dan McGee, Salesianum; Sean Davenport, St. Elizabeth

1992 Tom Coyne, Archmere; Josh Kasper, St. Mark’s

1991 Ryan Burke, Archmere; Chad Fedorkowicz, St. Elizabeth

1990 Steve Brady, Salesianum

1989 Chris Iudica, St. Mark’s; Shawn Mitchell, St. Elizabeth

1988 Chris Johnson, Salesianum

1987 Mike Lesutis, Archmere

1986 Dave Erfle, Salesianum; Rich Sernyak, Salesianum

1985 Harry Grant Schiavi, Salesianum; Mark Kostic, Salesianum; Mike Benefield, St. Mark’s

1984 Michael Drake, Archmere; Pat Udovich, St. Mark’s

1983 Roy David Thompson, St. Mark’s; Ken Falkenstein, Archmere

1982 Mike Udovich, Archmere

1981 Joe Garecht, Salesianum

1980 Jeff Thommes, Salesianum; Joe Pileggi, Archmere

1979 Frank Cephous, St. Mark’s, John Ryan, Salesianum

1978 Joe Papili, St. Elizabeth; Mark DiNardo, Archmere

1977 Steve McGrath, Salesianum; Mike LaGasse, Archmere

1976 Bob Hanisch, Salesianum

1975 Chuck Hunter, St. Mark’s

1974 Rom Gac, St. Mark’s

1973 John Carney, St. Mark’s

1972 Mark McLane, Salesianum

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Religious educators honor Ed Gordon

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The Association of Religious Education Administrators (AREA) celebrated the ministry of Edmond Gordon at its December meeting, as Gordon retired after nearly 30 years of service with the diocese as secretary of the Catholic Education Department and director of the Office for Religious Education.

During the luncheon, Tae Kang, a theology teacher at St. Elizabeth High School, spoke about Gordon’s many accomplishments. Gordon, Kang said, was the visionary, producer and promoter of the Echoes of Faith video-assisted catechist program. He helped prepare thousands of English- and Spanish-speaking catechists for work in parishes.

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Every day is sun day at St. Mary’s in Hockessin

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Staff reporter

HOCKESSIN – St. Mary of the Assumption Parish has gone a little green – and is saving a lot of green – thanks to an early Christmas gift from two parishioners who are in the energy business.

The Hockessin church is already seeing the benefits from a solar energy system that now provides some of its electric power. The system, materials and labor, was a gift from Bruce and Linda Wanex, who own Wanex Electrical Services. Bruce Wanex said he was looking for a way to give back to his community and to keep his employees busy as the workload slowed.

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