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Catholic churches in West Dundee and Gilberts welcome new pastor

Rockford Diocese Bishop David Malloy (left) pauses Saturday with Monsignor MartHeinz newly installed pastor St. Catherine SienChurch West Dundee. Heinz

Rockford Diocese Bishop David Malloy (left) pauses Saturday with Monsignor Martin Heinz, newly installed pastor at St. Catherine of Siena Church in West Dundee. Heinz also became pastor of St. Mary Mission in Gilberts. | Denise Moran~For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: August 16, 2013 6:35AM

WEST DUNDEE — Bishop David J. Malloy of the Diocese of Rockford installed Monsignor Martin Heinz this weekend as pastor of both St. Catherine of Siena Church in West Dundee and St. Mary Mission at Gilberts.

“It’s an honor to be appointed as the spiritual father of this parish,” Heinz told the congregation on Saturday. “In my daily prayers, I will pray for you. Please pray for me. There is no greater good than focusing on heaven.”

Heinz was ordained in 1994. He studied for the priesthood at seminaries in Hales Corner and Milwaukee, Wis. He said his family lives in Milwaukee.

Heinz has been the pastor of Holy Angels Catholic Church in Aurora for the past 13 years.

He previously served as Diocese of Rockford vocations director at Holy Angels Church for six years and as an associate at Holy Family Catholic Church in Rockford.

Heinz will now work with the Rev. James Canova, parochial vicar, and Deacons Bill Whitehead, Steve Fox and Hank Schmalen.

Heinz and the previous pastor, Rev. Michael Lavan, have traded places. Lavan is now the pastor of Holy Angels Church.

Malloy said that he appreciates how hard it can be for priests to transfer to other parishes.

“It’s not easy to pack your bags and go somewhere new,” Malloy said. “You have to learn a myriad of new faces, names and families. I’m glad that Monsignor Heinz is here. I’m grateful to all the priests of our diocese.”

Malloy said he enjoyed coming to West Dundee for the installation.

“I appreciate the chance to be here and offer Mass with you,” he told parishioners. “It’s always good to be out and about in the diocese.”

Nine 4th Degree Knights of Columbus — in full regalia with plumed hats, capes and swords — attended the installation. They are all members of Siena Council 8596, which includes churches in East and West Dundee, Carpentersville, Hampshire, Elgin, Algonquin and Huntley.

The commander of the Knights is Gene Elliott of Carpentersville. The other knights who attended the installation were Raul Estrellado of East Dundee, Jim Kruger of Sleepy Hollow, Don Moore of Carpentersville, Ken Labuda of Elgin, Bob Grant of West Dundee, Allan Fosz of Lake in the Hills, George Gemberling of Sleepy Hollow, and Nick Grandenitti of Huntley.

The bishop and new pastor met with parishioners after the installation Mass.

“It was a nice celebration,” said Carpentersville resident Delia Nicolaescu. “I’m grateful to be a part of it.”

Carpentersville resident Stanley deFurgalski, who is over 90 years old, talked to the bishop and shook his hand. DeFurgalski is a survivor of the Auschwitz Nazi concentration camp in Poland.

Renee Link has served as the principal of St. Catherine of Siena Catholic School for the past five years. The school was originally built in 1927 along Highland Avenue in West Dundee. In 1965, it moved to 845 West Main Street in West Dundee, which is the same address as the church.

“We’re excited about our new pastor,” Link said.

“It’s always a blessing to have Bishop Malloy here, and it’s wonderful to welcome our new pastor,” said Algonquin resident Pat Szpekowski. “We’re looking forward to his faithful leadership.”

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