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Oblates of St. Francis de Sales elect Rev. Jack Kolodziej as new provincial

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The Wilmington-Philadelphia Province of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales announced that Father John “Jack” Kolodziej, OSFS, has been elected to a four-year term as provincial effective immediately.

As provincial, Father Kolodziej will work with all of the Oblates and their apostolates in the Wilmington-Philadelphia Province. He oversees all administrative aspects of the Oblate community and ensures the mission of the Oblates to live and spread Salesian Spirituality.

A 1987 graduate of Oblate-ministered Northeast Catholic High School and 1991 graduate of Holy Family University, Fr. Kolodziej made his first profession to the Oblates in 1993. He studied theology at DeSales School of Theology in Washington, D.C., and received a Master of Divinity from the Washington Theological Union. He was ordained a priest in 1999.

Father Kolodziej ministered as director of campus ministry at Salesianum School in Wilmington; assistant principal for student affairs and director of Salesian mission and identity at Father Judge High School in Philadelphia; superior of the Oblate community at Father Judge and superior of the Oblates at the Salesianum Residence. Father Kolodziej studied gerontological administration at St. Joseph’s University and ministered at the Oblate Retirement Center in Childs, Md. He most recently served as director of development for the Wilmington-Philadelphia Province. He was a member of the Provincial Council and serves on the Board of Trustees of Nativity Preparatory School in Wilmington. He is also a weekend minister at St. Timothy’s Parish in Northeast Philadelphia.

Father Kolodziej takes over from Father Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS, who will reside and minister as a senior priest at Our Lady of Good Counsel parish in Vienna, Va.

The Oblates of St. Francis de Sales’ first community in the United States was located in Wilmington. In 1903, they founded Salesianum School where they still administer today. In 2003, to select Salesianum’s 100th anniversary, the Oblates founded Nativity Preparatory School. They administer St. Anthony of Padua Parish, Wilmington, St. Margaret of Scotland Catholic Church, Newark, St. Thomas More Oratory at University of Delaware, Newark, and Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Elkton, Md. They also live at the Oblate Residence at Salesianum School and Retirement Center in Childs Md. The provincial headquarters are in Wilmington.