On July 1, an historic union officially took effect when the former Eastern Province of Priests and Brothers of the Congregation of Holy Cross merged into the Indiana Province to form the new United States Province of Priests and Brothers.
The merger was approved at the Congregation of Holy Cross’ general chapter meeting in Rome in the summer of 2010. In December, the two provinces agreed that the merger should be effected by the Superior General on July 1, on the Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.
“This merger is a union and an act of God,” said U.S. Provincial Superior Rev. David T. Tyson, C.S.C. “Holy Cross has trusted in God’s Divine Providence from the beginning. Today with this union, He continues to bless us. With more than 100 seminarians, we are now more than 500 strong. We are men of different ages, cultures and ministries, but we are united in the common mission of Holy Cross: to make God known, loved and served!”
Nearly 400 Holy Cross religious from the Indiana Province and the Eastern Province gathered in a joint assembly, held June 13-16 on the campus of the University of Notre Dame. At the meetings, Father Tyson reflected that the “mission of the new United States Province is the Lord’s mission. The Lord works through us, our work and our ministry. This union brings not only new opportunities for us, but also for the people we serve at our parishes, educational institutions and missions.”
The ministries of the new U.S. Province include four colleges and universities: the University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, Ind., 1842); University of Portland (Portland, Ore., 1901); King’s College (Wilkes-Barre, Pa., 1946); and Stonehill College (Easton, Mass., 1948).
Other ministries include 15 parishes in the U.S. and Mexico; André House in Phoenix; the Downtown Chapel in Portland; Ave Maria Press in Notre Dame; Holy Cross Mission Center serving people around the world; and Holy Cross Family Ministries (HCFM) in North Easton, Mass. HCFM was founded by Servant of God Patrick Peyton, C.S.C., and encompasses Family Theater Productions, Family Rosary, and Father Peyton Family Institute. The United States Province is also present in Mexico, and the districts of Chile, Peru and East Africa (which includes Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania).
The United States Province’s religious members number more than 410 priests and brothers, plus 102 seminarians currently in formation. The administrative offices of the new Province will be located in Notre Dame, Ind.
The Congregation of Holy Cross is a Catholic religious order formed in 1837 in the little town of Sainte-Croix, (which translated means Holy Cross) France. Founder Blessed Basil Moreau, C.S.C., joined a group of parish priests with a band of teaching brothers to fill the educational and spiritual void left by the upheaval of the French Revolution. Today there are approximately 1,500 Holy Cross religious working to educate both the heart s and minds of believers of Jesus Christ in 16 countries on five continents.
Holy Cross’ presence in America began in 1841 when Blessed Moreau sent one of his new, young priests, Rev. Edward Sorin, C.S.C., to do mission work in the “New World.” Within a year, Father Sorin founded the University of Notre Dame—the world’s most renown Catholic university.
More about the mission of the United States Province of Priests and Brothers is available at http://www.holycrossusa.org.