Diocesan News

May 4-6 retreat with Fr. Baetzold, CFR

‘Totus Tuus: A Retreat with Mary, Mother of the Church’

WAVERLY (SNR) - Following in the footsteps of giants like Father Benedict Groeschel and Father Andrew Apostoli, the community vicar of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, Father Anthony Baetzold, CFR will lead his second retreat at Our Lady of Good Counsel Retreat House in Waverly May 4-6.

“I plan to cover themes such as how our Lady helps us in times of darkness of faith and sorrow, how she is the cause of our joy, a great model of prayer and evangelization, and how she is an instrument of healing” said Father Anthony. “But the real source material will be Gospel of Luke chapters 1 and 2.”

The retreat is held on the first Saturday of May, Mary’s month. The retreatants will join in a May Crowning at the end of the retreat, with a procession, flowers, and a consecration prayer to Mary’s Immaculate Heart.

Open to men and women of all ages, Father Anthony said, “this retreat could be for anyone, but especially those who wish to understand Mary’s role in the Christian spiritual life, and grow close to Jesus through love of her.

“I believe all need a retreat once a year to look at more deeply where they are with God, and His Will for their lives,” he continued. “To do this one needs time for reflection, prayer, silence, and the sacraments.”

Father Anthony entered the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal in 1996 and was ordained in 2005. His apostolates include Hispanic ministry, working with youth and the homeless and giving retreats.

Our Lady of Good Counsel Retreat House offers a sanctuary of prayer and recollection, with single rooms and private baths. Retreat include meditations, silence, prayer, adoration and the Sacraments and typically begin with a Rosary and Mass at 8 p.m. on Friday, and end with Mass on Sunday, followed by lunch. 

To register go to www.goodcounselretreat.com, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 402-786-2705.

Remembering Fr. Andrew Apostoli, CFR

By Father Gary Coulter, director of Our Lady of Good Counsel Retreat House

(SNR) - Franciscan Father Andrew Apostoli, CFR was a great friend and supporter of Our Lady of Good Council Retreat House.

He came to Waverly to give an annual retreat for almost 10 years (and before him Father Benedict Groeschel) and always enjoyed visiting the Lincoln Diocese.

He was last scheduled to come in February 2017, but was unable to travel due to his health. Father Apostoli died Dec. 13, 2017 at age 75, after a battle with cancer his last several months.

Ordained by Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen in 1967, Father Apostoli had just celebrated his golden jubilee of being a priest for 50 years. Since 2001 he was an authority on Archbishop Sheen’s works and served as the vice postulator of the archbishop’s cause for canonization.

Father Apostoli was one of eight Capuchin friars who founded the Community of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal (CFR) in New York City in 1987. Today they number more than 120, including twin brothers from Lincoln who joined the CFRs, Father Innocent and Brother Angelus, and thus we have another Nebraska connection.

Past retreatants shared memories of Father Apostoli and prayers for his soul: “We attended at least three of Father Apostoli’s retreats at Good Counsel Retreat House. Always, always, Father would help us retreatants feel comfortable as he, in a conversational way, would gently, but methodically, draw us closer and closer to our Lord—to Truth and Love that really matter! Whether at lectern, dining table, or offering Mass, he was genuinely humble and focused. We can only begin to imagine the intensity of that focus now from his eternal perspective - and the sweet blessings still flowing.” - John and Bonita English, Sacred Heart Church, Red Cloud

Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord. And let the perpetual light shine upon him.

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