Msgr. Steve Knox, Pastor
Msgr. Steve Knox was born in McHenry, IL and ordained for the Diocese of Rockford in 1989. His served as an associate pastor at Sts. Peter and Paul in Cary from 1989-1992. His next assignment was as associate pastor at St. John Neumann Parish in St. Charles from 1992-1995. His first assignment as pastor was at the Newman Catholic Student Center at Northern Illinois University. He served as pastor from 1995-2004. From there he became pastor as St. Mary Parish in Huntley, serving from 2004-2014. Bishop Malloy assigned Msgr. Steve to be pastor of St. Patrick Parish on July 1, 2014.
“I’ve enjoyed all my parish assignments over the years. It brings me great joy to help people grow in their relationship with God and with the Church. I’m happy that Bishop Malloy has assigned me as pastor of St. Pat’s. I look forward to serving this faith community for many years!”
Fr. Robert Gonnella, Parochial Vicar
Fr. Gonnella was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Rockford on Saturday, May 13 by Bishop Malloy at the Cathedral of St. Peter in Rockford.
Fr. Gonnella began his priestly ministry here at our parish on June 1, 2017.
I am honored to be joining St. Patrick Parish for my first priestly assignment! St. Patrick has been my home parish since 2002 and I am very excited to be coming there to serve the community as a priest. It has been an incredible journey toward the priesthood, and I thank God every day for the chance to be His priest. I have always been attracted to the priesthood, even from the time I was a boy. I heard the Lord’s call more clearly in high school, but did not decide to go to the seminary until I was in college. I finished my undergraduate degree in Mathematics at Aurora University, and then went straight into the seminary from there. For the last six years I have been at the St. Paul Seminary in St. Paul, MN, studying philosophy and theology.
My heart is filled with joy as I enter into priestly life. St. John Vianney once said, “The priesthood is the love of the Heart of Jesus.” I am overcome with humility and wonder at the opportunity to bring the love of the Heart of Jesus to the parish. Please keep me in your prayers and be assured of my prayers for all of you. God bless!
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Fr. Jhonatan Sarmiento, Parochial Vicar
Fr. Jhonatan Sarmiento was ordained a priest of Jesus Christ on June 2, 2018 at the Cathedral in Rockford. I’m happy that I have been assigned to
St. Patrick Parish as your new associate pastor. You can call me Fr. Sarmiento. As is the custom for new priests, I would like to share a few things
about myself with you.
I grew up in a loving family in Colombia. In addition to my parents, I have four brothers and sisters, with me being the oldest. My immediate family continues to live in Colombia. I attended Catholic schools for most of my youth. I was formed in the Catholic faith at home, especially under the example and guidance of my grandparents. I never thought about becoming a priest until I finished high school. Let’s say that the Lord has mysterious and interesting ways to reveal what he wants from us. I will share my full story with you at another time, but I can tell you this, “God speaks to us through his people.”
I was part of the Carmelite Religious Order in Colombia for two years. During that time, it became clear that the Lord wanted me to be a parish priest. In 2009, I had the opportunity to visit with the Vocation Director for the Rockford Diocese. After a number of visits I was invited to join the Rockford Diocese. I lived for two years at St. John Vianney College Seminary in St. Paul, MN. I continued my philosophy studies at St. Gregory the Great Seminary in Lincoln, Nebraska. The past four years I have studied theology and been in priestly formation at St. Paul Seminary in St. Paul, MN. The past nine years have been a time to grow closer to God as well as to discern where God wants me to serve. Each year has been a blessing. God has been my best teacher and each year he has taught me many things I needed to learn. Now I am blessed to be part of St. Patrick Parish. I bring what I have learned from God and what he has shown me over the years. I know he has much more to teach me here at St. Patrick’s. I am looking forward to meeting all of you, praying with you, and serving you as your priest!
Fr. Jorge Loaiza, Parochial Vicar
Fr. Jorge Loaiza is very happy to be serving the Hispanic community in St. Charles and Elgin. He was born in Medellin, Columbia and was ordained to the priesthood in Columbia on November, 1998 for the Diocese of Arauca-Arauca. He arrived in the USA in 2009 to work in the Diocese of Rockford which had a fast growing Hispanic community. For two years he served in Aurora. In December of 2011 he came to serve at St. Patrick Parish.
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Deacon John Kladar
who has been with us this past year, was ordained a Deacon on June 2, 2018 at the Cathedral in Rockford. John will be finishing up his last year of seminary beginning in the Fall and will be ordained a priest the following year. His diaconate assignment will be at our parish so he will be with us on the weekends for the coming year.
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Seminarian Nick Sentovich
Beginning July 15th he will begin a pastoral year at our parish. He is finishing up his third year of seminary in Rome. He will be taking this pastoral year to gain some parish experience before he goes back for his last year of seminary. Nick grew up in Rockford and most of his family still resides in that area.
He is a fine young man and you will really enjoy his presence.