Youth leader

Memorable day for Catholics in heartland Illinois, welcoming their new leader on the first day of Lent

PEORIA (Heart of Illinois ABC) — There was much to contemplate for the faithful on Thursday to observe the start of Lent, as at the same time Bishop Louis Tylka officially took over as head of the Catholic Diocese of Peoria.

Tylka assumed his new responsibilities after Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Bishop Daniel Jenky. Jenky, who is 75, is retiring after 20 years as bishop.

Heart of Illinois ABC met with people from the Levee District in East Peoria. Some are already embarking on their Lenten resolutions, while others are delighted to listen to Bishop Tylka’s homilies.

“When Bishop Jenky was brought into the community, he gave the best homilies, and I’m pretty sure this guy did too,” said Connie Constable, who is from Beijing.

Lisa Carr was shopping Thursday, but is thinking about her resolutions.

“Try to pay it forward and do a random act of kindness every day,” Carr said.

“This year I’ve decided to give up social media for the 40 days leading up to Easter,” said Morton resident Traci Martin.

Rita Littlefield of Morton said, “My desire is to be more in the Word.

Tylka, who is the 9th bishop of the Diocese of Peoria, is leading Sunday Mass this weekend at St. Mary’s Cathedral.

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