Tag Archives: Dublin Chapter

From Kansas to the Emerald Isle

The Dublin Chapter’s Fr. Aaron Vinduzka hails from small-town Kansas . . .

Fr. Aaron Vinduska

Fr. Aaron Vinduska

Fr. Aaron Vinduzka, LC
Dublin Chapter

Hailing from a small town in Kansas north of Wichita, Fr. Aaron Vinduska’s blood does not run green, but now he calls the Emerald Isle home. Again. He spent two years in novitiate there before taking a “worldwide tour” along the priestly path, having spent time in Spain, Italy, then back in the States and Canada. In addition to serving as Legatus chaplain, he is director of Dublin’s Faith and Family Centre, which provides retreats, formation courses, and youth activities directed toward leavening Irish society one soul at a time.

Tell us about your call to the priesthood.

When I was 14, a good friend invited me to join him on a week-long Easter retreat at Immaculate Conception Apostolic School, run by the Legionaries of Christ in New Hampshire. Long story short, I’m the one who ended up going, and now I’m a happy priest and he’s a happily married man back in Kansas.

My vocation was nurtured by a very strong family life. My parents were very loving and supportive of my decision to enter the priesthood. My sister and brother, too. Both of them are older than me. I’m 34.

How did you become acquainted with Legatus?

When I was in San Jose, Calif., a fellow priest introduced me to the mission and ideals behind Legatus. It has a lot of similarities with our own spirituality — namely, that we’re given gifts and talents and we’re going to be held accountable for how we’ve used them. And one of those gifts is our faith and how we pass it along to future generations. That perked my interest in Legatus.

Was there a Dublin chaplain before you?

When I returned to Ireland last July, I followed in the footsteps of Fr. Michael Mullen, who returned to the States to continue his studies in theology. I’ve been on the job since last September.

What impact has Legatus had on the Dublin archdiocese?

The men and women involved have a great desire to do positive things for the archdiocese and the whole country. Many are very active in important initiatives, especially in the areas of pro-life and supporting marriage and the family.

How would you like to see the chapter progress?

We typically have 20 to 30 people coming to chapter events. My hope is that numbers continue to grow. But the most important kind of growth isn’t quantitative. It’s the degree to which each member realizes and brings to fruition his own call to holiness. And there’s a big problem in Irish society regarding a lack of trust in the Church and the credibility of her message. We have to build up that trust once again.

My mission with the chapter is to encourage members in their spiritual lives and support them in any way I can: if there’s a death in the family, for example. And I want to invite more people for membership among those I know.

You have a vocation, of course. Any avocations?

I strive to foster a love for scripture. And I very much love Chesterton and Tolkien, who teach us that life is an adventure, a love story between us and God. That informs my preaching, too.

Can you recommend any particular devotions?

Eucharistic adoration. If we’re called to be like Christ, we need to be with him.

Do you have any advice for business leaders?

Never lose your identity. Knowing that we’re created by God gives us clarity about who we are and informs the choices we make. Will those choices bring me and those around me closer to Christ? That clarity is fundamental. Simple, but fundamental.

MATTHEW A. RAREY is Legatus magazine’s editorial assistant.

Legatus Charters in Ireland

…Dublin becomes Legatus’ first chapter to charter outside of North America.

Archbishop Charles Brown

A historic event took place on Oct. 11 in Dublin, Ireland, when Legatus’ Dublin Chapter became the first chapter to charter outside North America.

The chartering took place on the first day of the Catholic Church’s Year of Faith. It was enhanced by the presence of several Legates from the United States who were attending the annual Legatus pilgrimage taking place in Ireland at the same time.

Dublin Chapter members and their guests were honored to have Archbishop Charles Brown, the apostolic nuncio to Ireland, as the main celebrant at the chartering Mass. Concelebrating with him were chapter chaplain Fr. Michael Mullan, LC, and the chapter’s former chaplain Fr. Thomas McCarthy, OP.

Holy Mass was celebrated at the Poor Clares Convent. Many of the sisters, who have been praying for Legatus and the Dublin Chapter for several years, were in attendance.

Persistence pays off

Chapter president John Reid commended his fellow Legates for their persistence and their commitment to Legatus.

“Legatus is an organization whose time has truly come, whose mission is crucial — particularly in Ireland where the values we hold so dear are under so much attack,” he said. “Legatus is and will continue to be a hugely positive and constructive force in Irish businesses, homes and society in general.”

After Mass, the Dublin members and their American guests transitioned to the chartering celebration at the home of members James and Rosemary Sheehan. Following the reception, Archbishop Brown — a New York City native — addressed Legates, encouraging them to live out the Legatus mission faithfully both in Ireland and the United States.

“The presence of Archbishop Brown and his affirmation of and enthusiastic support for the work and mission of Legatus in Ireland was truly inspirational,” Reid said. “As we know, he was specifically chosen by our Holy Father at this time of need in Ireland, and he truly relates to the special role Legatus has.”

The evening continued with a meal, followed by some traditional Irish entertainment. Members expressed their gratitude to the Sheehans for being such gracious hosts, saying that it was a great honor to be part of the historic event.

“Chartering provides us with a solid platform to further grow our Dublin Chapter, and our membership has derived much encouragement from the visit of our fellow Legates from North America,” Reid said.

“Many of our members are encouraged to attend forthcoming Summits — and to learn more about what Legatus is trying to do. We are confident that we will increase the membership of our chapter, and this will assist in the establishment of other chapters in the UK and mainland Europe where there are many faithful Catholics yearning for an organization such as Legatus to be established. It’s really true that Legatus is needed now more than ever!”

Congratulations to Irish Legates

John Hunt congratulates Legatus’ Dublin Chapter on their Oct. 11 chartering . . .

John J. Hunt

In the 11th chapter of Luke, Jesus said to his disciples, “Suppose one of you has a friend who goes out at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, for a friend of mine has arrived at my house from a journey, and I have nothing to offer him.’

“He said to his friend in reply from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked and my children and I are already in bed. I cannot get up to give you anything.’ I tell you, if he does not get up to give him the loaves because of their friendship, he will get up to give him whatever he needs because of his persistence.”

This was the Gospel reading on Oct. 11, the day that marked the beginning of the Year of Faith and the 50th anniversary of Second Vatican Council’s opening. But Oct. 11 was also a momentous day in Legatus’ 25-year history. After many years of apostolic cultivation — and surviving Ireland’s economic reversals of recent years — Legatus’ Dublin Chapter was chartered.

In addition to bringing Legatus and its mission to Europe, Dublin became the first chartered chapter beyond the shores of North America. The chapter’s chaplain Fr. Michael Mullan and Archbishop Charles Brown, apostolic nuncio to Ireland, celebrated the Mass and officiated the induction of the 20 founding CEO members and spouses with words that echoed the persistence inherent in Luke’s gospel.

Legatus pilgrims from the U.S. also shared the joy of the occasion. They came to the Emerald Isle to follow in the footsteps of St. Patrick and Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman — and to visit the sacred places of our Catholic faith.

It wasn’t lost on the members of this new Legatus chapter and their American guests that this great country — the land of Legatus chairman and founder Tom Monaghan’s heritage — is experiencing the same cultural challenges that we face in the U.S. Sadly, in a bold front page headline, The Irish Times announced on chartering day the imminent opening of the first-ever abortion clinic in Northern Ireland.

The Irish culture is under attack, the U.S. culture is under attack, and we members of Legatus — together with the rest of the Church militant — are the army in this battle for souls. May we be unified in faith and persistent in prayer and action.

John Hunt is Legatus’ executive director. He and his wife Kathie are charter members of Legatus’ Chicago Chapter. Watch for a full report on the Dublin Chapter’s chartering in the next issue of Legatus magazine.