Father Richard E. Bulwith, 80, died June 14. He was the former associate pastor of St. Hilary Parish and associate director of Catholic Charities.
Born in Melrose Park, Father Bulwith attended St. Lawrence Seminary, Quigley Preparatory Seminary and the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary before being ordained in 1967.
He also earned master’s degrees in health science at Governor’s State University and in spirituality at Loyola University Chicago.
He served as associate pastor of St. Emeric, Country Club Hills; St. Michael, Orland Park; Immaculate Conception (North Park Avenue); St. Nicholas, Evanston; and St. Hilary. He was pastor of St. George (Lituanica Avenue). From 1987 to 2017, Father Bulwith served as associate director of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
Father James Heneghan, a friend of Bulwith and associate pastor at Our Lady of the Rosary, was grateful for the work that Bulwith did with Catholic Charities. “He was touched to see the healing and growth in the community he served at Catholic Charities,” Heneghan said. “And this energized and empowered his priesthood beyond a parochial setting.”
Father Daniel M. Tomich, 71, died June 25. He was the former pastor of Queen of Apostles Parish, Riverdale.
Born in Chicago, he attended Quigley Preparatory Seminary, Niles College and the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary before being ordained in 1976.
He was associate pastor of St. Patricia, Hickory Hills; St. Victor, Calumet City; and St. Monica. Later, he was pastor of Queen of Apostles, Riverdale, for more than 10 years, and then associate pastor of St. Alexander, Palos Heights, St. Louis de Montfort, Oak Lawn; and St. John Fisher.
“His friendship has been a gift,” said Father Dennis Zalecki, pastor emeritus of St. Anastasia Parish in Waukegan. He met Father Tomich during seminary at Quigley South and he recalled that they were bound together by their mutual sense of humor.
Deacon Thomas F. Dehler, 84, of O’Fallon, Missouri, died June 13.
Born in Chicago, he was ordained in 1988 and served at St. Lawrence O’Toole Parish in Matteson before moving to Missouri.
He was predeceased by his wife, Janet Birnett Dehler. He is survived by his second wife, Priscilla, and his children Thomas Dehler Jr., Alicia Dehler and Beth Del Rosario; stepchildren Tracy Webb-Wiley, Robert Webb, Mark Webb and Gary Webb; 11 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren; and his sister, Barbara Baker.
Deacon Jose Colon-Ortiz, 89, died June 15. He was ordained in 1972 and served at Holy Rosary, Resurrection, St. Aloysius and St. Mark parishes.
His wife, Emma, predeceased him. He is survived by his children Jose Colon, Mayra Colon, Elsie Colon and Lisandra Toro; four grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild; and his siblings, Antonia Maria Colon, Margarita Colon, Francisco Colon, Miguel Colon.
Deacon Dexter Gary Watson, 70, died June 18.
He was ordained in 1990 and served at St. Malachy and Precious Blood Parish, now part of Blessed Maria Gabriella Parish.
Born in Chicago, he was a U.S. Army veteran and former 27th Ward alderman.
He is survived by his wife of 42 years, Robin Watson; children Dexter II, Amber and Ryan Watson; his mother, Gloria Watson; and his sister, Sharone Watson.
Divine Word Father Paul Nadolny, 68, died June 12 in Techny after fighting cancer.
Born in Wisconsin, he graduated from University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point with a bachelor’s degree in forestry and worked in the field before joining the Peace Corps and serving in Guatemala. When his commitment with the Peace Corps ended in 1983, he entered the Divine Word Associates Program and professed vows in 1984.
As a seminarian, he studied at Catholic Theological Union and volunteered at St. Procopius parish in the city’s Pilsen neighborhood before being ordained to the priesthood in 1989.
Father Nadolny’s first assignment as a priest was in Chiapas, Mexico, where he served indigenous people. While in the United States to foster a partnership with a Wisconsin parish in 1995, Father Nadolny learned that the Mexican government refused to renew his visa.
After a year of hoping to return to Mexico, Father Nadolny’s superiors encouraged him to learn Portuguese in Brazil in preparation for his next assignment, a new mission to Mozambique. In 1999, Father Nadolny became one of the first Divine Word Missionaries to serve in the southeastern African nation, where he worked among the Zulu, Makua and Bantu peoples.
In 2019, Father Nadolny moved back to Techny for cancer treatment.
He is survived by his brothers James, Joseph, David and Stephan Nadolny; and his sisters Ann Luckey and Mary Garrity.
BVM Sister Vivian C. (Lauren) Wilson, 94, died June 21 in Dubuque, Iowa.
Born in Wyoming, she entered the BVM congregation in 1948 and professed final vows in 1955.
She taught elementary school in Iowa and South Dakota and at St. Callistus. She also served as an admissions counselor and assistant director of the Business Administration Institute at Mundelein College and director of religious education at St. Keiran, Chicago Heights.
Servant of the Holy Heart of Mary Sister Bernadette (Awilda) Pabon, 76, died June 22.
Sister Bernadette was born in Puerto Rico and, after her mother died, lived in several foster homes. As a teen, she attended Holy Family Academy in Beaverville, Illinois, where she met the Servants of the Holy Heart of Mary and began to consider religious life.
However, she married Nobel Pabon and raised a family. For more than three decades, Bernadette served as a catechist and trainer in the Archdiocese of Chicago. She was director of religious education at Holy Rosary Parish for 33 years.
After her husband died and her sons were grown, she pursued the call to religious life. Sister Bernadette made her vows in September 2020 and ministered in Batavia, Hopkins Park, Champaign and Kankakee.
She is survived by her sons, Frank, Rey, Joseph (Cynthia) and Robert (Alejandra), her daughter-in-law, Toni Pabon; 10 grandchildren; her brothers Alfred and Jose Oquendo; her sister Hedda Vazquez; and her adopted family the Suprenants.