Fr. Joseph Cheah, OSM, was recently part of the Asian American Christian Collaborative (AACC) delegation that met the with Biden-Harris administration at the White House regarding central issues faced by Asian American communities. The domestic policy advisor listened to the concerns on specific policy proposals on education, mental health, gun violence, and racial solidarity, and will connect the AACC with various departments and points of contact. In turn, the AACC will provide the moral voice to issues that are central to our communities.

A free concert featuring the sacred music of Lent, Holy Week, and Easter will be held this Sunday, March 19, at 3:00pm at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica, Chicago. Featuring organist Dr. Walter Whitehouse, vocal soloists and other instrumentalists, this concert is free and open to the public. Please join us for this inspirational and uplifting event.

The concert will also be livestreamed on the Servite Friars Facebook page.

Fr. Joseph Cheah’s book Anti-Asian Racism: Myths, Stereotypes, and Catholic Social Teachings has been released.

This is the most comprehensive analysis to date of anti-Asian racism, told from a Catholic perspective. Cheah includes relevant Catholic Social Teaching documents, comparing and contrasting the Asian experience with anti-Black racism. The heart of the book is structured around three major stereotypes: perpetual foreigner, Yellow Peril, and the myth of the model minority. These are examined from the perspectives of history, Asian American Studies, Asian American marginal theology, biblical studies, and CST.

Located in west transept of Chicago’s historic Basilica of Our Lady of Sorrows, the altar of Our Lady of Sorrows is justly regarded as one of the finest small altars in the country. Of white Carrara and variegated marbles, its main feature includes the column raised, domed, arched, and cross-topped canopy housing a beautiful statue of the Mother of Sorrows. The altar was consecrated in 1914.

The statue of the Mother of Sorrows is in a declining state of repair. The surface of the statue is experiencing paint flaking and large areas of paint loss. At some point in its history, it had undergone a complete repainting, most likely to cover numerous losses in the paint. At least 50% of the surface area of the statue shows damage to the paint layer. Since it is nearly impossible to remove a layer or layers of repaint to unveil the original paint layer, it seems unreasonable to try to save damaged repaint. The proposed treatment includes cleaning the surface of dirt, dust and flaking paint, filling areas of paint and plaster loss, testing to determine the original colors, and a complete repainting of the surface.

Cost estimate is between $10,000 and $11,000.

Please consider a donation to restore this notable and historic work, that it may continue to welcome and inspire pilgrims seeking the compassionate intercession of the Mother of Sorrows for the next 107 years and beyond.

The Asian American community has faced a disturbing rise of anti-Asian hate and violence amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. As a community of men gathered in the name of the Lord Jesus and committed to living the gospel, the United States Province of the Order of Friar Servants of Mary condemns in the strongest possible terms unprovoked attacks on Asian Americans, especially the elderly, and the tragic murder of eight innocent persons in Atlanta, six of whom were women of Asian descent.

We agree with Pope Francis that “[e]very brother or sister in need, when abandoned or ignored by the society in which I live, becomes an existential foreigner, even though born in the same country. They may be citizens with full rights, yet they are treated like foreigners in their own country” (Fratelli tutti 97). This quote speaks directly to the type of racism experienced by Asian Americans, for they have been treated as perpetual foreigners in their own country. To be treated  forever as a foreigner in one’s own country often leads to being treated as an object to be ignored, bullied, harassed verbally and physically, because one is seen as an outsider and second-class citizen. We deplore such depictions of Asian Americans as less than human, for as Christians we believe that each and every person – regardless of race, nationality, or ethnicity – is created in the image and likeness of God, possessing inherent and undeniable dignity as persons in Christ.

We take this moment to reiterate our commitment to dismantle the sin of racism, to repent of complicity or omission on our part in perpetuating racial discrimination, and to extend our fraternity to all people, with the hope of breaking down walls which divide us from one another and disregard our fundamental equality as beloved children of God. Like Mary, the Mother of Jesus, who stood at the cross of her son as he suffered on Calvary, we recognize Christ suffering again in the lives, bodies and persons of our brothers and sisters who are oppressed by injustice, racism, violence, and economic deprivation. We stand in solidarity with the Asian American community in vehemently denouncing the xenophobia, nativist racism, violence, and trauma experienced by our Asian American brothers and sisters.

Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica, Chicago, is pleased to serve as the location for Communion and Liberation’s Annual Way of the Cross. From the press release:

Each year we follow the passion of Christ in the heart of our city, where thousands of people carry their cross every day. Through choral music, Gospel passages, reflections, and our silent procession, we hope to enter more deeply into the events of Good Friday and their meaning for us today. We ask to experience the exceptional Presence of Christ among us as a real answer to the needs of our hearts.

Due to COVID, this year the Stations of the Cross will take place at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica.




3121 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago


APRIL 2, 2021
9:30am – 11:30am


Mask and Social Distancing will be required in accordance with safety protocols

Bro. Edmund M. Baran, O.S.M. a solemn professed friar of the Order Friar Servants of Mary, USA Province, died Tuesday January 12, 2021, at Rush University Medical Center, Chicago. He was eighty-six years of age and a friar for sixty-six years. Beloved son of the late John and the late Stephanie nee Skora. Dear brother of the late Grace Tarascio, the late Lorraine Niedermayer, the late Adeline Baran, the late Eugene, the late Richard (Teresa), loving uncle to many nieces and nephews and grand nieces and nephews. Bro. Edmund entered the Servite Order on September 5, 1952, making his first profession of vows in 1954 and Solemn Profession of Vows in 1958. His assignments included the Servite Community in Louvain, Belgium and Servite Provincial Treasurer. He also worked for the Archdiocese of Chicago School Board as Program Director of their Comprehensive Employment and Training Program from 1969 until 1992. Bro. Edmund joined the U.S. Coast Guard Auxillary 9th Western Region in 1984 and served as Commodore from 2004-2006 He had many happy memories of the time he served. Visitation Tuesday, January 19th from 10:00 -11:00 AM at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica 3121 W. Jackson Blvd. Chicago, followed by 11:00 AM Mass of Christian Burial. Masks required. Interment Servite plot, Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Hillside IL. In lieu of flowers donations in his memory to the Servite Provincial Center, 3121 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago, IL 60612.

Fr. David M. Brown O.S.M., a solemn professed friar and priest of the Order of Friar Servants of Mary, USA Province, died Saturday, January 2, 2021 at St. Joseph Village of Chicago. He was ninety-seven years of age and a priest for seventy-two years. Loving son of the late David and the late Laura Brown, dear brother of James (Karen) Brown, Daniel (Helen) Brown, The late Margaret Mary Fitzgerald, the late Thomas (Margaret) Brown, the late Laurann (Thomas) McCarthy. Visitation Thursday, January 7th, from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM followed by Mass of Christian Burial at 11:00 AM at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica, 3121 W. Jackson Blvd., Chicago. Masks required. Interment in the Servite plot, Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Hillside IL. In lieu of flowers donations to The Servite Friars-USA Province, 3121 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago IL 60612.