Former president of Red Cloud Indian School returns to reservation

Fr. Peter Klink SJ named school and parish chaplain at Our Lady of Lourdes in Porcupine

posted on June 27, 2011

He’s coming back!

After a one-year sabbatical, Fr. Peter Klink SJ, the former president of Red Cloud Indian School, will return to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation as the School/Parish Chaplain, based at Our Lady of Lourdes Elementary School in Porcupine.

“I am grateful to Fr. Peter for his generosity in accepting this new position. The aim is to have this position strengthen the relationship between the educational efforts and the pastoral efforts of Red Cloud,” said Fr. George Winzenburg SJ, president, when announcing Fr. Klink’s return to the students, faculty and staff.

Last August, after 25 years of service to the Red Cloud community including a total of 18 years as president, Fr. Klink took the much-deserved sabbatical. During that time, he was able to travel, read, study, visit family members and prayerfully reflect on his ministry. God was also good to give Fr. Klink the chance to be present with his sister during her unexpected diagnosis with esophageal cancer. He is very grateful for that blessing. And after the year away from the Lakota people, he says that he is very happy to come back home.

“I really look forward to returning to an effort that strives to invite people to see their God-given giftedness,” says Fr. Klink. “That’s exciting! Once people see and feel that, they can see the ways in which those gifts, when developed and used in the right ways, can make this world a better and better place. That applies to youth and to adults alike.”

Fr. Klink will begin his new position at the start of the new 2011-2012 school year. He will be at Our Lady of Lourdes for four days a week working in school-related ministry and ministering in the larger Church community on Sundays.

“The position of school and parish chaplain opens the door to be both in the living rooms of families and the classrooms of the schools,” says Fr. Klink. “That is a real blessing. Both are so critical to a ministry that impacts the whole person. Unless faith and hope are alive and well in schools, homes and communities, they really are less credible and have less practical impact.”