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Commemorating 75 Years of Catechesis, Evangelization and Service

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75th Anniversary

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Welcome to the 75th anniversary of the Diocese of Joliet!

Our diocese was founded on December 11, 1948. For an entire year, we will highlight the great accomplishments of our past and how we were founded in faith, while being called to witness now and in the future, and continue to be sent forth to serve

On December 11, 1948, His Holiness Pope Pius XII established the Diocese of Joliet-in-Illinois. The foundations of our faith reach back to the French missionary explorers, Father Jacques Marquette and Louis Joliet, who shared the message of the Gospels, evangelizing as they moved from settlement to settlement. It was during their time with the Native American people called the Illinois, that the Catholic faith took root and matured.

Today, our diocese is filled with people called to continue that first movement of evangelization and missionary discipleship. As we celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Diocese of Joliet, we give our utmost gratitude to God for all the abundant blessings that He has bestowed on every person from the time of the first missionaries until today. We acknowledge and celebrate all peoples, living and deceased, who make our diocese strong in faith and compassion, with a heart of service for all people.

75th Anniversary (Accordion)

These special liturgies, uniting the faithful of the diocese in the celebration of Mass, serve as personal encounters with Christ and other Catholics as we worship, pray, and give thanks to God. Attendance at the opening and closing Masses is limited, but all in the diocese are invited and encouraged to attend the regional liturgies. 

Opening Liturgy

Bishop Hicks will be the celebrant of the opening liturgy at the Cathedral of St. Raymond Nonnatus at 6 p.m. on Monday, December 11, 2023. A reception will follow in the Cathedral Commons. Representatives from all parishes and religious institutions in the diocese will receive information regarding attendance at the liturgy.

The 75th Anniversary Responsorial Psalm will be featured at the liturgy, and jubilee banners and prayer cards will be distributed.

Livestream link

Regional Liturgies

Three liturgies will be celebrated in various parts of the diocese to bring people together in celebration of our anniversary. Bishop Hicks will celebrate the Masses, along with priests from the local areas. Receptions will follow each of the liturgies, featuring entertainment and food for purchase.

June 22, 2024
4 p.m. at Bishop McNamara High School in Kankakee (Ford, Grundy, Iroquois and Kankakee Counties)

September 14, 2024
4 p.m. at Montini Catholic High School in Lombard (DuPage County)

September 28, 2024
4 p.m. at Lewis University in Romeoville (Will and Kendall Counties)

Closing Liturgy

The closing liturgy will be held at the Cathedral of St. Raymond Nonnatus at 4 p.m. on Sunday, December 8, 2024. A reception will follow in the Cathedral Commons. Representatives from all parishes and religious institutions in the diocese will receive information regarding attendance at the liturgy.

A copy of the 75th Anniversary Commemorative Book (see below) will be distributed.

Livestream link

From November 25 through December 3, 2023, members of our diocese will have the opportunity to participate in a novena of prayer to St. Francis Xavier, our patron saint. The Novena of Grace is used with permission by the Jesuit Institute UK

Full Novena

Blessing of St. Francis Xavier Statue

December 3, 2023 at 1 p.m.
Blanchette Catholic Center
16555 Weber Road, Crest Hill, IL 60403

On the Feast of St. Francis Xavier, and the final day of the novena, a statue of the saint will be blessed at the Blanchette Catholic Center. The statue will serve as a constant reminder of the patron saint of our diocese, since its founding in 1948. Bishop Hicks will bless the statue at 1 p.m. that day in an open ceremony so that all may witness this moving event.

Theology on Tap

Three 2024 events will be held, each tied to a part of the theme for the 75th Anniversary: Founded in Faith, Called to Witness, Sent Forth to Serve. Details will be added here as they are available. 

  • Spring 2024  April 18 at the Blanchette Catholic Center in Crest Hill (featuring Mike Gormley, the Lay Evangelist)
  • Summer 2024  June 13 at the Blanchette Catholic Center in Crest Hill (featuring three newly ordained priests: Fr. Jeremy, Fr. Jared and Fr. Alex Lorang)
  • Fall 2024  October 24 at the Blanchette Catholic Center in Crest Hill (featuring Bishop Hicks)

Joliet Youth Day

June 1, 2024 from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Lewis University
1 University Parkway, Romeoville, IL 60446
Cost: $75/person

This exciting, first-of-its-kind youth event will be held at Lewis University on June 1, 2024, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. An unforgettable day conference dedicated to transforming the lives of 8th to 12th graders into passionate and joyful disciples, participants will:

  • Engage with national keynote speakers
  • Experience uplifting praise and worship
  • Deepen their faith through Eucharistic adoration
  • Find renewal in Reconciliation

Details, Registration and Promotional Material

National Eucharistic Revival

In celebration of the National Eucharistic Revival, there will be opportunities for people to come together and grow in their understanding of the Blessed Sacrament, culminating with the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage (Chicago, June 28–30, 2024) and the National Eucharistic Congress (Indianapolis, July 17–21, 2024). 

This national congress—the first to be held in 83 years—will be a pivotal moment in both American history and the legacy of the Catholic Church. Tens of thousands of pilgrims are expected, but space is limited. 

Register for the National Eucharistic Congress

Service Day

During the month of October, 2024, all parishes and various religious entities will be asked to celebrate a day of service. On these days, all will be encouraged to join together to reach out and respond to the various needs of the people in their community. It will be left to each community to develop its own plan of action as to how it will spend this day and/or even month. A suggestion is that all participating will attend a morning mass and then be sent out to serve others. Ideally, if this takes place on a Saturday, they could then come back to the parish for the Saturday evening mass and to then share with each other their experiences later. All parishes will receive a list of suggested activities in order to help them plan what they might do.

75th Anniversary Calendar

Through the Catholic Extension Society, 75th Anniversary Calendars for 2024 will be made available to the parishes in the diocese. Each month will feature photos and information regarding the historical background of the diocese, along with significant dates for the 75th Anniversary. English and Spanish versions of the calendar will be available through parishes in November. 

This 14-part series will will educate and engage listeners on the first Monday each month, from November 2023 to December 2024. The inaugural episode will feature Bishop Ronald Hicks and Fr. Tom Paul, the chairman of the 75th Anniversary Committee, who will discuss the rich history of the diocese and their multifaceted approach to the events and activities planned, with a broad view of the anniversary celebration.

75th Anniversary Podcast (audio only)

75th Anniversary Podcast (YouTube video)

Three custom lesson plans have been developed for all diocesan schools and religious education programs. The interactive curriculum includes:

  1. Introduction to the 75th Anniversary  An overview of dioceses and structure of the church, diocesan timeline, St. Francis Xavier prayer, top-ten facts about the Diocese of Joliet, and a physical scavenger hunt with prizes.
  2. Eucharist (Lent 2024)  Connection to the upcoming Eucharistic Congress and ways to participate.
  3. St. Francis Xavier (Advent 2024)  Connection to acts of service and how Eucharistic living calls us in mission, with options to participate in October service days.

Lesson Plans PDF

Jubilee Prayer Cards

Parishes of the diocese have jointly written the Jubilee Prayer—a constant thread of unity for all in the diocese—to be said in churches, schools, religion education classes and homes. Prayer cards in English, Spanish, Polish, Korean and Vietnamese will be distributed at the opening liturgy and by parishes throughout the diocese. 

Prayer Cards

Responsorial Psalm

Music directors within the diocese submitted compositions based on guidelines established by the Office of Divine Worship. The National Pastoral Musicians Joliet Chapter Board will select a psalm from the entries to be established as a common prayer throughout the year. 

75th Anniversary Commemorative Books

This publication will include history, photos, and information on all parishes, schools and religious institutions that comprise the Diocese of Joliet. Each parish will receive a copy at the closing liturgy in 2024, and we hope to offer a digital version as well. 

75th Anniversary T-Shirts

Celebrate in DOJ style! Custom T-shirt orders will be placed online by individuals, with pick-up options at local parishes. Attendees of the regional liturgies will be encouraged to wear the shirts, which will include the 75th anniversary logo. 

Thank you for promoting the 75th Anniversary of the Diocese of Joliet! Files will be added below throughout 2023–2024, and periodically will be sent to parish staff. 

The logo and JPGs below will open in a pop-up window; right-click on the image to save. The PDFs will open in a new browser window; click the download icon in the upper-right to save.  


For church bulletins (print PDFs)

  • 75th Launch—full page (8.5"x11")
  • 75th Launch—half page (8.5" x 5.5")
  • November 4/5 Novena of Grace—full page (8.5"x11")
  • November 4/5 Novena of Grace—promo (4"x2.5")
  • December 2023 75th Anniversary Timeline—full page (8.5"x11")

For social media (digital JPGs)


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