Tag Archives: Comboni Missionaries

Combonis honor Joe Russo

The Comboni Missionaries honored Joseph A. Russo at their annual dinner dance on Nov. 30 at Manzo’s Banquets in Des Plaines. (708-354-1999) As a boy growing up in Cicero, Russo enjoyed learning about his Italian and Calabrian heritage from his extended family. From those experiences, he decided he wanted to make a difference in the world. As a teenager, he found his calling in funeral directing and embalming. Russo graduated from Worsham College of Mortuary Science in 1991 and opened his own company, Russo Funeral Service, in 1995 at the age of 21. In 2012, he fulfilled a dream by …

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Combonis honor memory of Fr. Biancalana

The Comboni Missionaries commemorated the second anniversary of the death of the Rev. Angelo Biancalana with a 6 p.m. Mass on June 11 in the chapel of the Comboni Mission Center in LaGrange Park. (708-354-1999) Rev. Angelo was born in Italy, moved to the Chicago area in 1951, and was ordained on May 25, 1958. Following that, he did missionary work among Native Americans in California, ran the Comboni’s vocation program in Cincinnati and crisscrossed the country in search of future missionaries. Fulfilling his dream of going to Africa, he spent more than 15 years there as a pastor, teacher …

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Comboni Missionaries honors Frank Salerno

The Comboni Missionaries honored Frank Salerno at its annual dinner dance on Nov. 24 at Alta Villa Banquets. (708-354-1999) Proceeds from the event will benefit Water With Blessings. The organization submitted the following articles: Frank Salerno On July 4, 1940, twin boys were born in Marano Principato, Calabria, to Raffaele and Annunziata Salerno. One of those twins was Francesco Salerno. When he was 13, he traveled to America with his father in the hopes of making a better life for their family. His mother and two brothers stayed behind in Italy. After the pair arrived in Chicago, Francesco lived for …

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Fr. Pezzi celebrates 50th anniversary of ordination

The Rev. John Paul Pezzi, MCCJ, celebrated the 50th anniversary of his ordination at the Comboni Mission Center in LaGrange Park. Pezzi has been a missionary in Burundi, a journalist and editor in Italy and South America, the pro-rector of a Catholic University in Ecuador, and a parish priest among the pygmies in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In Rome, he managed the Comboni Missionaries’ website while working on behalf of the society’s Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Commission. He is currently in the United States working for JPIC with VIVAT International, a NGO with special consultative status at the …

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Combonis honor Rose Mary Ranallo

The Comboni Mission Center honored Rose Mary Ranallo on Nov. 25 at Porretta’s Banquets in Chicago. Ranallo is the chief financial officer and manager of her family businesses, NS Builders and Arno Decorating. A resident of Schaumburg, she grew up in Chicago and Elk Grove Village with her two sisters, Josephine and Lisa, and her parents, Gina and Natale Sclafani, who immigrated to the United States from Sicily. A past treasurer and president of the Women’s Division of the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans, she has chaired the division’s Italian Heritage Ball and Cotillion as well as its Scholarship …

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Combonis to honor Tony Turano

The Comboni Missionaries will honor Umberto “Tony” Turano as Man of the Year on Nov. 21 at Porretta’s Banquets in Chicago. (708-354-1999) “Tony Turano is a supremely successful businessman who has never forgotten his roots,” says the Rev. Peter Premarini, MCCJ, superior of the Comboni Mission Center in LaGrange Park. “We have chosen to honor him in appreciation of all the generous contributions that he and his family have made to the community as well as their support of the work of the Comboni Missionaries.” Tony and his brothers, Renato and Giancarlo, were born to Mariano and Assunta Turano in …

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2011 Benefactor Award Dinner

by Terry Quilico On Saturday evening, Nov. 19, supporters of the Comboni Missionaries were greeted by two FIAT 500s flanking the entrance to Abbington Banquets in Glen Ellyn. The occasion was the 45th annual Comboni dinner dance and the Cinquecento’s were there to highlight John Fields of Fields FIAT of Highland Park, who would receive the Comboni Benefactor Award at the event. The cars were also positioned to promote the raffle drawing for a new 2012 FIAT that evening. One hundred and eighty people were in attendance as Nino Folino and then Enzo and Iliana Incandela provided a grand night …

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2012 Dinner Dance

On Nov. 3, 2012, at their annual dinner dance to be held at the Mazzini-Verdi Club, the Comboni Missionaries will honor one of their own, Fr. Angelo Biancalana. Fr. Angelo, a Comboni missionary for more than 54 years, has influenced the lives of many, not only in the Chicago area, but throughout the world. He has officiated at many marriages, funerals, anniversaries, etc. in the United States but most memorably he did great missionary work in Uganda for 14 years with many of those years under the reign of Idi Amin. He is currently assigned to the Comboni Mission Center …

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2013 Dinner Dance

On Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, the Comboni Missionaries will hold their 47th annual Dinner Dance at Via Bella Banquets in Countryside, and the venerable group will mark the special occasion by honoring Francis Cardinal George. Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I., Ph.D., S.T.D., was born on Jan. 16, 1937, in Chicago to Francis J. and Julia R. (McCarthy) George. After attending St. Pascal Elementary School in Chicago, he attended St. Henry Preparatory Seminary in Belleville. He entered the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate on Aug. 14, 1957, studying theology at the University of Ottawa in Canada, and was ordained a priest by …

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