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by Natalie Brei, PhD
Immaculate Heart of Mary Counseling Center

When a loved one dies, family members and friends must deal with the barrage of emotions that inevitably accompanies the grieving process. Many have heard about stages of grief, including feelings of anger, depression, or acceptance, but it is debatable whether there are truly defined ‘stages’ or a universal progression through the process. How we deal with grief is very individual.

by Ann Peters Miller, M.S., LMHP
Immaculate Heart of Mary Counseling Center

Dealing with a death in the family is very difficult – experiencing the death of a child through miscarriage, neonatal death or stillbirth is no exception.
Once we find out we are pregnant we start having a host of hopes and dreams for this little one that will be joining our family. These are then dashed as we get the devastating news that our little one has died.

Bringing an energetic desire to continue to serve the Church, John McDonald is now the Hastings Regional Director for Catholic Social Services (CSS) of Southern Nebraska. He will lead and manage our various social services in Hastings, including emergency services, food recovery and redistribution, the sack lunch program, and St. Gianna Women’s Homes West. John will also oversee our St. Joseph Gift & Thrift and warehouse operations. He will serve a vital, leadership role in the implementation of CSS’s mission in Hastings.

Each October, in honor of Pro-Life Month, the organization collects diapers for pro-life organizations around the state, and Catholic Social Services of Southern Nebraska, which includes St. Gianna Women’s Homes.

Bringing a wealth of experience in the non-profit organization management industry, Mario Racicot of Lincoln is now the Vice President of Programs for Catholic Social Services (CSS) of Southern Nebraska. Racicot will lead our social services operation that assists, accompanies, and affects social change and the betterment of individuals, families, and the common good.

by Katie Patrick, executive director,
Catholic Social Services of Southern Nebraska

Last Tuesday, I received a phone call from a young man who came as a refugee from Afghanistan in 2000, when he was just 5 years old. Catholic Social Services had resettled his family then, and he had questions regarding the process of how they were admitted and resettled in the Lincoln community.

I asked a few more questions about his family, and as he listed the names of his siblings and his mother, I immediately recognized who I was speaking to. 

Following more than a decade of working in the development and financial services industry, John Soukup of Lincoln is now the Development Officer for Catholic Social Services (CSS) of Southern Nebraska. Soukup will pursue and manage aspects of donor prospecting, cultivation, and stewardship in accordance with the mission of CSS.

Learn more about new CSS Executive Director Katie Patrick by listening to her "Spirit Mornings" interview on Spirit Catholic Radio's Spirit Mornings segment!

by Katie Patrick

Malémbe, Malémbe. Slowly, Slowly.

When I moved to the Democratic Republic of Congo in October 2010, these were the words I heard from the local Congolese most frequently. I had just finished graduate school at Seton Hall University in New Jersey where I spent a fair amount of time commuting to internships in Newark and New York City. Life was hectic, complicated, and tiresome. Even when you’re not in a rush, you’re hurrying to catch a train, a taxi or a bus.

by Randy Porter

(SNR) - Bishop James Conley appointed Katie Patrick as the new executive director of Catholic Social Services of Southern Nebraska (CSS), effective July 1.

Patrick was named CSS interim executive director March 15 when Bishop Conley appointed previous director Father Justin Fulton as vicar general of the Diocese of Lincoln, with administrative oversight, strategy and mission for CSS.

  • Square miles served in the Diocese of Lincoln last year


  • Cash & in-kind assistance provided across southern Nebraska last year


  • Counseling sessions through the Immaculate Heart of Mary Counseling Center last year


  • Nights of lodging & safety provided through St. Gianna’s Women’s Homes last year


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