Home | About Us | Subscriptions | Email Newsletter | Advertising | El Centinela | Archives
  • El Centinela’s Prengaman now leads AP’s West Region
    NEW YORK — Peter Prengaman, former editor of El Centinela, has been appointed to lead The Associated Press’ West Region. Based in Phoenix, he will oversee journalists responsible for news in 13 Western states, including Oregon.
  • An ancient order: Portland’s great Irish past
    From 1877 until the Great Depression, an Irish fraternal society was a mighty force in Oregon Catholicism. The Ancient Order of Hibernians met in smoky Portland halls, sang the glories of Irish home rule, tipped back a drink or two, debated some more, gave long eloquent speeches and took up collections for good causes. Members, whether lawyers or plumbers, regularly sent hard-earned dollars to Irish nationalist movements.
  • Home visits allow Vincentians to assess needs, form relationships
    Volunteers from the St. Vincent de Paul conference at Resurrection Parish in Tualatin get thank- you cards from families who have received food, rent aid or utility help. The relationship is something more than helper vs. client.
  • Phil and Penny Knight give $75 million for Providence Heart Institute
    Providence Heart Institute has received a $75 million gift from Phil and Penny Knight to support continued growth and innovation in cardiac services, including the development of a heart transplant program at Providence.
  • We like the stationery
    Elaine and Jerry Owen, owners of Lady Hill Winery near St. Paul, have been going through family papers in their farmhouse, from which Jerry’s family has worked the land since the 1850s.
  • WATCH: At rites, Catholics-to-be learn about the path of the cross
    About 750 Oregonians stood in churches last month to affirm their intention to become Catholic at Easter. 
  • Sister recognized for deaf ministry
    RENTON, Wash. — Providence Sister Judith Desmarais, provincial leader of the Sisters of Providence in the western United States, has received the 2019 Rev. David Walsh Person of the Year Award. Bestowed annually by the National Catholic Offices for the Deaf, the award honors individuals for outstanding service with the community of Catholics who are deaf and hard of hearing.
  • Medicare — confounding and life-saving
    Patrick Weisgerber, a Medicare Advantage representative at Providence Health Plans, has comforting words for anyone feeling overwhelmed by the confounding choices, obscure language and downright mystifying regulations surrounding the nation’s health care plan for elders. 
  • Pro-life movement ‘a calling’ for college student
    MOUNT ANGEL — For Mount Angel resident Marcos Sanchez, working in the pro-life movement is more than an extracurricular activity — it’s a calling.
  • SALEM — Pro-life advocates are holding their annual Lenten vigil March 6 – April 14 outside Planned Parenthood, 3825 Wolverine Street NE in Salem.
  • Rebuilding a life post-prison
    Three days after her release from Coffee Creek Correctional Facility in Wilsonville, Ailene Farkac was flipping hamburger patties and taking drive-through orders at Wendy’s.
  • Portland a site of new anti-homelessness initiative
    The Archdiocese of Portland is teaming up with Catholic Charities USA, Catholic Charities of Oregon and Providence Health and Services to reduce chronic homelessness in Portland by 20 percent in the next five years.
  • The gift of Martha and Mary House
    Tam An was on the verge of becoming homeless when she found hope through Catholic Charities’ Martha and Mary House.
  • From different islands, gathered as one in faith
    A typhoon trapped one of their special guests, Coadjutor Bishop Julio Angkel, on an island in their homeland. That didn’t faze the Micronesian community of Oregon and Washington as they filled St. Anthony Church in Southeast Portland to bursting for a Mass celebrated in Chuukese March 3.
  • Technology to improve health of homeless women
    When people think of homelessness they often visualize what they see daily: people — mostly single men — sleeping in doorways or camping on vacant lots. But there’s also an unseen group — the hidden homeless. Most of the hidden homeless are families with children, senior citizens and single women, many of whom are escaping domestic violence.
  • ‘People are happy when they are connected with God’
    “God is not waiting for the fake version of you,” Archdiocese of Portland youth ministry director Ricky Shoop told the youths during the RiseUp Rally held March 1-2 at Canby Grove Retreat Center.
  • Relationships help fuel financial turnarounds

    The woman could no longer bear it. She fled the abusive man, took her three children and began living on the streets of Portland in a van.

    A survivor who knows that everyone needs help sometimes, she called on Catholic Charities of Oregon. Caseworkers helped her find temporary housing, a domestic violence support group and counseling.


  • ‘She’s very strong’
    A former trafficking victim, Astrid Mendoza secured a green card and was able to visit family with help from Catholic Charities’ Immigration Legal Services.
  • Village to transform more lives

    “This is so great. Wow.”

    Debbie Haskett stepped over mounds of gravel and dirt, weaving in between brightly colored tiny houses marveling at what will soon offer shelter and community to women like herself — those who know the fear and fatigue of life on the streets.



  • Recidivism and redemption

    Bradley Scott Vollmer has spent more than a third of his life in prison. He’s robbed banks and sold narcotics, all in an effort to get high, get numb and forget.

  • Helping Southern Oregon’s hidden rural homeless
    The 35-day federal government shutdown hit Catholic Charities where they didn’t expect it last month: Because staff at the Department of Agriculture were furloughed, the charity’s acquisition of three apartment buildings in southern Oregon stalled.
  • Roasting coffee for homeless women
    Charlie Wicker, founder of Trailhead Coffee Roasters, roasted and sold bags of Kenton Women’s Village coffee to help finance the tiny-home community — in particular their move. 
  • Fidele's story: From near death to a new life
    Fidele Munyanganizi spent the first two-thirds of his life living in peace on his family’s farm in the Democratic Republic of Congo. When war broke out in Congo in the mid-1990s, he and his family were forced to flee.
  • Catholic Charities master leases provide a creative solution to rising housing costs
    In a quiet Southeast Portland neighborhood, a large house sits on a corner lot beside a pair of oak trees. For years it served as home to priests ministering to members of Holy Family Parish; the church is located a few strides down the block. Now the former rectory will serve the wider community in a new way: as a life-changing residence for five women.
  • Knights share BBQ, friendship with at-risk boys
    The Knights of Columbus Lake Oswego Council spent an evening with the boys at St. Mary’s last fall, providing barbecue and T-shirts and leading sporting activities.
  • iPhone health records now available to PeaceHealth patients

    VANCOUVER, Wash. — PeaceHealth now supports Health Records on iPhone, a program that brings together hospitals, clinics and the existing Apple Health app to make it easy for patients to see their available medical data from multiple providers whenever they choose.
  • Measles: Reassurance and warnings
    With an average of one new case of measles reported every day in Clark County, Washington, just across the Columbia River from Portland, the Archdiocese of Portland Department of Catholic Schools took steps to ensure principals knew what to do. 
  • WATCH: High tea for a high purpose

    BEAVERTON — Usually a noble and simple hub of prayer and reflection, Our Lady of Peace Retreat House went genteel for a few hours Feb. 2. Bows, linen tablecloths, tea towers and doilies galore adorned dozens of tables for a tea party and auction to benefit the ministry.

  • Construction begins on massive South Hillsboro development
    HILLSBORO — Crews have broken ground and built a handful of houses, the start of Oregon’s largest planned development. A new town with an estimated 20,000 residents gradually will spring up along Tualatin Valley Highway at Cornelius Pass Road. It’s being called South Hillsboro.
  • Development director named for Portland Council of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul
    The Portland Council of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul has announced the appointment of Tod Thayer as director of development. Thayer most recently was major gifts officer for the Sunshine Division in Portland and before that served as director of development for Folktime in Portland and as executive director of the Mount St. Helens Institute.
Valley Catholic middle schoolers earn spot at national competition for Future City vision, design
    BEAVERTON — Before the “Big One” strikes, Oregonians might consider turning to a group of seventh-graders for tips on how to endure subduction zone mayhem.
  • Local hopes higher for federal climate bill
    A member of St. Juan Diego Parish in Northwest Portland helps lead a coalition urging Congress to curtail carbon emissions while putting rebates in the pockets of Americans. 
  • Opening to the graces of marriage
    During 52 years of largely happy marriage, Jim and Gina Kadera eventually learned to handle the inevitable quarrels by praying through them. Graces followed: Their defensiveness melted. They perceived each other’s wisdom. Their common goals rose to the top. The Kaderas, members of Holy Redeemer Parish in North Portland, credit the Holy Spirit.
  • Portland deacon now a national radio host on EWTN

    Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers’ voice really carries.

    That’s not just because of his famous volume. The permanent deacon from Immaculate Heart Parish in North Portland has come on as new cohost for an EWTN national radio program.



  • Rice Bowl provides funds for local projects, too
    In December, 13 western Oregon Catholic parishes and organizations received grants from the Catholic Relief Services Rice Bowl program. While Rice Bowl funds alleviate hunger overseas, a part of the local proceeds confront local poverty.
  • Archbishop leads NW pilgrims
    PANAMA CITY — A group of 32 pilgrims from the Archdiocese of Portland, the Diocese of Baker and the Archdiocese of Seattle teamed up with Archbishop Alexander Sample for the week in Panama at World Youth Day. 
  • Central Catholic Principal John Garrow to retire

    After 10 years of service as Central Catholic’s principal, John Garrow, a 1976 graduate of the Southeast Portland high school, has announced that he will retire at the end of the school year. 

  • Court fight in Keizer
    KEIZER — After St. Edward Parish here refused an offer of $1.75 million for a 6.18-acre lot of land wanted by Salem-Keizer Public Schools, the school district has proceeded with a lawsuit to acquire it through use of eminent domain.
  • TriMet seeking riders who qualify for low-income fare
    After public testimony a year ago from the Archdiocese of Portland and Blanchet House, the TriMet board of directors gave a unanimous thumbs up to a special fare for low-income riders.
  • Adventurer Colin O’Brady a Catholic school grad
    The Portland man who captivated the world with feats of endurance, including the first solo unassisted crossing of Antarctica, developed his love of the outdoors at Franciscan Montessori Earth School in Portland.
  • Portland Catholics support growth of Tanzanian school
    CORNELIUS — Portland Catholics are among key supporters of a school for disabled children in Tanzania.
  • ‘We will never be silent’
    Unlike in previous years, the abortion rights advocates occupied a corner of the square for about 15 minutes, chanting loudly during a prayer commemorating the 60 million U.S. lives lost to abortion since 1973. They howled like wolves while Archbishop Sample spoke, but cheers for the archbishop from pro-lifers drowned out the noise.
  • The Catholic healthcare organization PeaceHealth and the ACLU of Washington state have settled a lawsuit involving coverage of transgender health care services under PeaceHealth’s employee medical plan.
  • Black activist doctor collaborated with Oregon’s Catholic Church
    One of Oregon’s African American civil rights pioneers was a close friend of the Catholic Church.
  • MLK: ‘Make things better for people who come after you’
    Martin Luther King Jr. gave the young Lew Frederick some of the best advice of his life. But he also told the youth more than once: “Would you turn down the music?” and “Just sit down and listen for a minute and stop running!”
  • Local Lions Clubs help build ‘Heartfelt House’
    SPRINGFIELD – The Heartfelt House, an $8.4-million project, will offer comfortable, affordable lodging to out-of-town families of patients at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend in Springfield and University District in Eugene. The 20,208-square-foot house will be a five-minute walk from RiverBend.
  • Former church official sentenced to 25 years
    BOISE, Idaho — Father Thomas Faucher, a retired Boise Diocese priest who was an official in Oregon’s Baker Diocese during the 1990s, has been sentenced to 25 years without parole for possession and distribution of child pornography, some of it portraying violence.
  • A dignity-of-life mentor

    This weekend in Washington, D.C., a humble and popular University of Portland math professor is marching with a handful of U.P. students and hundreds of thousands of others to declare the inalienable dignity of human life.

  • Schools team up to take on hunger

    They may be rivals on the field, but the people of Jesuit and Central Catholic high schools were on the same team before Christmas to carry out a massive food delivery.

  • Going green
    When Donald Fournier died a few years ago, Msgr. Patrick Brennan celebrated his funeral Mass at St. Mary Cathedral. “None of his friends from Knights of Columbus or his singles group would have guessed that it was a green funeral,” says his daughter, Elizabeth Fournier, director of Cornerstone Funeral Home in Boring and author of “The Green Burial Guidebook: Everything You Need to Plan an Affordable, Environmentally Friendly Burial.”
  • Nights on marriage and faith

    Mater Dei Radio in Oregon is celebrating 30 years of broadcasting with two nights featuring David Anders, host of EWTN’s “Called to Communion,” which airs on the local station, 88.3 FM in the Portland area and Salem and 94.9 and 100.5 in Eugene and Springfield.

    Anders will discuss his book, “How the Catholic Church Saved My Marriage,” this month in Tigard and Salem. 

  • ‘A huge blessing': Regina Caeli Academy now in its second year serving Portland-area home-schoolers
    A hybrid model of education that integrates home schooling with a classical curriculum taught by Catholics in love with the faith recently was established in the Portland area. Its foremost mission is to shape minds and hearts for Jesus.
  • Documentary, talks on death penalty held Jan. 15

    On Tuesday, Jan. 15, when the Salem Progressive Film Series opens its monthly 2019 program presenting the documentary “In the Executioner’s Shadow,” three on-screen storytellers will share thoughts about justice, injustice and the death penalty. Several talks on the death penalty will follow the film.

  • Catholic 12-step meetings now held on Saturdays
    Catholic in Recovery, a national 12-step program for Catholics, is growing locally. Our Lady of Sorrows Church, 5239 SE Woodstock Blvd., Portland, has been hosting weekly meetings at 6 p.m. on Wednesdays.
  • A priest and a dad co-teach a St. Agatha religion class
    At the front of a St. Agatha School classroom, eighth-grade theology teacher Arnaud Prevot begins the day’s lesson on Advent and the sacraments. He’s just a few sentences into his introduction when another voice chimes in from across the room: “Advent comes from the Latin word ‘adventus,’ meaning ‘coming.’”
  • St. Vincent de Paul of Portland started 150 years ago
    An astonishing movement began in 1833 at the University of Paris. A 20-year-old student named Frederic Ozanam formed an alliance in response to critics who called the Catholic Church a friend of the rich and an exploiter of the poor.
  • 'It's like a holy mystery’

    Paul Farrow, a retired Fred Meyer retail executive, once had a rugged opinion of people who are homeless. He dealt with shoplifters.

    Now that he volunteers at St. André Bessette Parish on West Burnside Street, Farrow knows better. 

  • Top Catholic Sentinel stories of 2018

    The unspeakably sad, the reverent and the joyous were among the most-read stories in Catholic Sentinel digital media during 2018.

    Top stories include the death of a young local Catholic from opioids, the misdeeds of then-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick and an extraordinary form confirmation rite.

    The June Corpus Christi procession in downtown Portland, Archbishop Alexander Sample’s columns and a perennial favorite, priest reassignments, also rated high.