Chilton parish honors cancer saint
First Peregrine shrine in diocese
By Patricia Kasten
Compass Associate Editor
Cancer victims, their families and friends are invited to visit
the new St. Peregrine Shrine at Chilton. The shrine will be
dedicated at an 11 a.m. Mass on Thursday, Aug. 30, at St. Mary
Church, 62 E. Main Street. Fr. Christopher Krymski, OSM, national
director of St. Peregrine Ministries at Our Lady of Sorrows
Basilica in Chicago, will be the main celebrant at the dedication
The Chilton shrine, located in a renovated confessional to the
right of the church sanctuary, was the idea of Fr. Gary New, SDS,
pastor of Chilton Area Catholic Ministry. He and the other
pastoral staff had seen many reports that Chilton has a higher
than normal rate of cancer in its population, though no one has
determined the reason. Many parish members have been affected.
"Every time you turn around," Fr. New said, "someone here has
cancer or is being checked for cancer. I've had so many deaths
(among parishioners) from cancer, so I thought, 'Why not have a
St. Peregrine Laziosi was a 14th century Servite. He was
diagnosed with ulcerative cancer of the leg and amputation was
planned. The night before surgery, Peregrine prayed before the
crucifix. He fell asleep and dreamed that Jesus came down from
the cross and touched his leg. In the morning, the doctors found
Peregrine's leg healed. He died in 1345 in Forli, Italy, where
his main shrine is located. He is the patron for cancer,
ulcerative sores and AIDS.
There are national shrines to St. Peregrine in Portland, Ore.,
and Chicago. The Chilton shrine, already being visited by people
from outside the parish, is the only shrine honoring St.
Peregrine in the Green Bay Diocese.
The shrine will be open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and
Saturdays from 8 a.m. until after the 7:30 p.m. Mass. On Sundays,
Mass is at 8:30 a.m. and the church will remain open until 7 p.m.
Weekday Masses are at 8 a.m., except on Mondays. There are free
St. Peregrine prayer cards at the shrine, as well as candles,
holy oils, prayer cloths and booklets available for a small
The parish also has a perpetual adoration chapel behind St. Mary
Church. Healing Masses are held twice a year at the parish, near
the feasts of St. Peregrine (May 4) and St. Therese (Oct. 1).