parishioners of St Mary and St Nicholas surround Fr Jean Philippe and Fr Jose Manuel in the church

Fr. Jean Philippe Lokpo and Fr. Jose Manuel Sánchez Ortiz were installed as the new pastor and associate at St. Nicholas-St. Mary parishes on September 25.

Photos courtesy of St. Nicholas Parish

On Sunday, September 25, Fr. Jean Philippe Lokpo was installed as pastor for the newly combined parishes of St. Nicholas-St.Mary in Evanston, Illinois. He will be assisted by Fr. Jose Manuel Sánchez Ortiz.

Bishop Mark Bartosic of the Archdiocese of Chicago presided at the installation Mass. During his homily Bishop Bartosic spoke about his excitement for the parishes coming together as a new missionary family.

“In Evangelii Gaudium… Pope Francis “calls all the baptized to be missionary disciples. No matter how long we or our people have been Christian, all of us are missionaries. I’m so grateful for the spirit with which I sense these communities coming together,” Bishop Bartosic said.

“This is a tremendously exciting moment.”

Fr. Ruffino Ezama, Provincial Superior of the Comboni Missionaries in North America, also spoke during the installation. He gave a brief history of the Comboni Missionaries and welcomed both parishes to the Comboni family.

“I just heard the statement that St. Mary and St. Nicholas not only are now part of the same family that they also are part of the Comboni family and I’m so happy to hear that,” Fr. Ruffino said.

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