New priests share the stories of their chalices

| June 4, 2014 | 0 Comments

Archbishop John Nienstedt blessed the chalices of the archdiocese’s six newest priests at a special Mass May 29 in the chapel of his residence in St. Paul. At a brunch following the Mass, which was held two days before the men were ordained priests at the Cathedral of St. Paul, each spoke briefly about his chalice.


Father Kevin Manthey

chalice_MantheyLast fall, a leader with the Knights of Columbus in Lakeville asked then-Deacon Manthey if he had a chalice yet. He didn’t, and so the Knights donated one. “It has the Fourth Degree logo on it of the cross and the Holy Spirit descending upon the world,” Father Manthey said. “It also has the names of the deceased Knights of Columbus from the past year who have died from the Lakeville council. It will be a great reminder to pray for them.”




Father Marc Paveglio

chalice_PaveglioOn a visit to Italy, Father Paveglio went to San Giovanni Rotondo, the home of St. Padre Pio. There was a small gift shop in town that had three chalices. “One was this model, but this is actually not that chalice,” he said pointing to his chalice. “But it really stuck out to me because it has motifs of the passion on the base and on the cup. And it has Peter, Paul, John the Baptist, and the Madonna and child in little niches on the node. In Rome, I fell in love with the saints in a really special way. I was going to get the chalice I saw, but I looked at the base and the stem was crooked. I asked if they had another one and was told, no, this was the only one they had. So, I looked at the bottom and found the company name. I came back to Rome, found the vendor and talked to them. They helped me pick this out. It’s a gift from my parents.”


Father Michael Barsness

chalice_BarsnessFather Barsness began his search for a chalice online, looking on Google to get a idea about prices. “On eBay, this one came up,” he said. “It’s a French, silver chalice. So, I bid, and I rescued it from eBay.” There are several symbols on the base of the chalice, including an ‘M’ for Mary, a cross and a flower, and it features glass stones.




Father Marcus Milless

chalice_MillessFather Milless learned that Father Francis Pouliot might have a chalice for him and so he met with him on Dec. 19. “He told me all of these stories from Nazareth Hall [a former preparatory seminary in the archdiocese], and then he said, ‘I have a chalice for you.’ It wasn’t actually his. It was Msgr. [Stanley] Srnec’s chalice. He’s a priest of this archdiocese who has been ordained for 72 years. On the bottom it says, ‘Our share in your sacrifice, Mother and Dad, September 26, 1942.’ He was ordained early because of World War II. It has his mother’s wedding diamond. Dec. 19 also happens to be my mom’s birthday. It’s the day I got the chalice and took it home.”


Father Joseph Kuharski

chalice_KuharskiFather Kuharski said he received the inspiration for his chalice from the cathedral in Siena, Italy. “I was with one of our professors there, and he pointed out this great marble artwork on the floor,” Father Kuharski said. “It was an image of the sacrifice of Isaac and the angel grabbing Abraham’s arm. It was right before the steps leading up to the high altar. It’s in Scripture that ‘God himself will provide a lamb,’ and it just really struck me. So I looked for a chalice that had the images.” He eventually had one made.

The images on the base of the chalice include those from the story of Abraham and Isaac: Isaac carrying wood up the mountain foreshadowing the cross Christ carried up Calvary, as well as the scene of the sacrifice and the ram getting caught in the thicket. At the top of the chalice are images showing the fulfillment of the story in the New Testament: the lamb, the crucifixion and the Blessed Mother, the Immaculate Heart of Mary.


Father Paul Shovelain

chalice_ShovelainLast fall, Father Nathan LaLiberte of St. Michael in St. Michael asked then-Deacon Shovelain if he had a chalice. “A week later, he sent me a picture of this one, although not in the condition it presently is in,” he said. “It needed to be refurbished. He told me it had been found in the basement of the rectory in St. Michael. It’s believed to be Father Peter Eicher’s chalice. He was ordained in 1904..”

On the base of the chalice, made in Germany, is a crucifixion scene, with each tip of the cross featuring a diamond — the biggest one is likely from Father Eicher’s mother’s wedding ring, Father Shovelain said. On the bottom, there also are images of Matthew, Mark, the Blessed Mother, Luke and John.

“There are orange stones near the base and also blue ones,” Father Shovelain said. “The blue ones, I’m told, represent the flesh and the orange represent renewal — we receive the flesh of Christ, the blood of Christ to bring about renewal in our lives.”

Father Eicher died in 1959 and is buried in the St. Michael cemetery. “My Grandma Kasper remembers going to Mass with him,” Father Shovelain said. “My great-great grandma was an Eicher, so there’s a good chance we’re related.”


Click images to enlarge

Photos by Dianne Towalski/The Catholic Spirit

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Category: Ordinations