About Fr. Chuck O.F.M.

I am Charles Faso, a Franciscan Friar since 1960. I was ordained a Catholic priest in 1967. I was born and raised in Chicago Heights IL, where I heard God’s call to be a priest when I received my First Holy Communion and to be a Franciscan Friar in fourth grade. Sr. Agnetis kept me after school one day and simply said that I should be a Franciscan . I said: “Yes, Sister!” And here I am a Franciscan and a priest. I believe God loved me too much to wait much longer to call me to priesthood and religious life, because I might have never heard the call cleary later.

I attended the Franciscan High School in Westmont IL from 1954 to 1960 and novitiate in Teutopolis IL 1960-1961. I studied philosophy for three years at our Franciscan Seminary in Cleveland OH and returned to Teutopolis IL to study theology for four years, 1964-1968. I studied music at Manhattanville, St Pius X School of Liturgical Music during seven summers in the 1960's. My first assignment was to teach music and religion at the high school seminary in Westmont IL. During that time of 1968 to 1972, I studied music at DePaul University in Chicago and received a degree in Music Education. I began responding to invitations to speak on the liturgical changes in the Church since the Vatican Council II. I was then blessed to be able to study Liturgy at the University of Notre Dame for two years. In August 1976 I received a Masters Degree in Liturgy from Notre Dame.

After two years of teaching the novices and working in the Vocation Office, I was called in 1978 to minister at St. Peter’s in the Loop. For twenty years at St . Peter’s, I enjoyed ministry to thousands each day as confessor, musician, liturgist, teacher, and for eight years as pastor. My experience at St. Peter’s helped me describe the ministry like this: St. Peter’s is the Emergency Room for Hope and Healing in the Loop. My fear in 1978 that I would never get to know any of the thousands of people who enter St . Peter’s every day was quickly dismissed. Like anyplace, you get to know as many people as you want to. I loved my ministry at St. Peter’s. Those twenty years were truly a blessing for me in many ways. I continue to enjoy so many friendships that began there on Madison and Clark in the Loop. During this time I was also preaching retreats and giving talks throughout the Chicago area .

My ministry at St. Peter’s ended in 1998. Since then, I have been able to answer full time the calls to preach in Parishes and Retreat Centers around the country. Also, since 1980, I have been involved in leading groups on pilgrimages to the Holy Land of Israel and Palestine, to Italy, France, Turkey, Baltic Sea, Russia, China, Australia, Mexico, Germany, Greece and Egypt ...

In 2008, my Provincial in St Louis asked me to be available in the future only to preach to Franciscans - Friars, Sisters, and Secular Franciscans (Laity who are Franciscans - used to be called the Third Order.) So no more parish missions for parishes nor workshops on Liturgy for parishes and dioceses.

One door closes and another opens, like preaching to Friars in Singapore in March 2009. Ever onward!

My two sisters live in Chicago Heights, 35 miles south of Chicago. My many relatives of the Faso and Helsel families live in the Chicago area, in Hawaii, in Florida.


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