Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


By ANDREW NELSON, Staff Writer | Published May 27, 2010

North Georgia priests are a happy lot, who would be helped if they exercised more.  Also, they like their boss, Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory.

Msgr. Stephen Rossetti, a clinical associate professor at The Catholic University of America, came to town on Monday, May 10, to present his findings on a national survey of priest wellness. He spoke at the Cathedral of Christ the King to a roomful of local priests.

Some 2,482 priests participated from 23 dioceses across the country. Priests from the Atlanta Archdiocese filled out 128 of the anonymous surveys.

So, how are the local priests doing?

Ninety-two percent reported having good morale. And 94 percent said they are happy as priests. Both responses are higher than the national average for priests, which is 89 percent and 92 percent, respectively. (The margin of error is 2 percent.)

However, priests here need to get out more. Close to half don’t exercise on a regular basis. Some 44 percent reported they were overweight.

Priests are pleased with Archbishop Gregory. Seventy-nine percent of the priests here reported having a good relationship with him, compared to 77 percent nationally when priests were asked about their relationship with their bishop.

Also, 90 percent of local priests support Archbishop Gregory’s leadership. That is much higher than the 81 percent of priests nationally who support their bishop’s leadership.

The St. Monica Church Men’s Club presented five students from the Duluth parish with its 2010 Patron Scholarships at a parish awards dinner on May 13.

Club president Joe Lenzi and the club’s scholarship committee chairman Bob Kramer hosted the dinner. Each recipient was awarded a $1,000 college scholarship.

Scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic achievement, church involvement and overall service to the community during high school. The scholarship program has grown since it gave awards to the first two students back in 2000. Over the 10 years since its inception, the club has distributed $36,000 in college scholarships to parish teens.

This year’s winners include Caitlyn Askew and Mary Clare McLaughlin, who are attending Franciscan University of Steubenville, Steubenville, Ohio; Elena James, who is attending the University of Georgia, Athens; Patrick Lyons, who is attending Piedmont College, Demorest; and Lisa Sakalik, who is attending Georgia State University, Atlanta.

The scholarships are made possible by the generosity of patron parishioners, the parish Men’s Club and the St. Monica Knights of Columbus Council.

Students at Our Lady of Victory School in Tyrone tackled a lot of math problems to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

The school completed its Math-A-Thon program. It raised $11,980.

“We are very proud of our students for working so hard on the Math-A-Thon,” said Nancy Crane, the school’s Math-A-Thon coordinator. “With their help, St. Jude Hospital will be able to create new treatments that may one day lead to a cure for many forms of cancer that will benefit the children of our state, our country, and around the world.”

Math-A-Thon, now in its 31st year, is an educationally based fund-raising program in which students obtain sponsors for the number of math problems completed in workbooks provided for students in pre-kindergarten through eighth grade.

Test your math skills with a problem from the eighth-grade book:

Dylan has a Hardy Nickerson poster he wants to frame. The poster is 2 ½ feet by 4 feet.  If he wants a matted border that is 2 inches wide, what size frame, in inches, will he need? (Answer at the bottom.)

Diane Starkovich, the superintendent of the archdiocesan school system, has earned a new title. Doctor of Philosophy has a nice ring to it.

Starkovich wrapped up the academic work at The Catholic University of America in the spring. She graduated on May 15.

She studied Catholic school leadership. Her dissertation is titled: “The Relationship between the Accreditation Process and Perceptions of Efforts for Continuous Improvement in Catholic Elementary Schools in Texas.”

Her major finding is the strong belief by Texas Catholic elementary school personnel that the Texas Catholic Conference Education Department accreditation process is necessary for local continuous improvement efforts.

She began the degree in 2004 while working in the Diocese of Fort Worth.

Answer to the eighth-grade math problem: 34 inches by 52 inches.

To contribute people/items to Notable, please contact Andrew Nelson at or (404) 877-5512.