MEET YOUR PARISH PRIESTS
Father Del Staigers
Fr. Del grew up north of Cincinnati in Yellow Springs, Ohio, where his parents still live on the farm. He has two sisters who have moved to Phoenix, AZ, and his youngest sister died in 2013. He was ordained for the Archdiocese in 1987 and served three years as Associate Pastor at St. Helen Church in Dayton before leaving for further studies in St. Louis, MO. He returned to Cincinnati and began teaching at the Athenaeum of Ohio/Mt. St. Mary’s Seminary for nine years, while he was the Sunday Associate at St. Andrew, Milford. Fr. Del served again in Dayton in an urban parish region that grew to three parishes: Our Lady of Mercy, Queen of Martyrs, and Corpus Christi. Following ten years in Dayton, he arrived at St. Veronica Church in 2010, and St. John Fisher was added to his assignment in 2017, just as the implementation of the Pastoral Region was beginning. In 2022, we start our Family of Parishes with St. Andrew, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, and St. Veronica. He is very excited about the possibilities that we face as a Church in the world today. He believes that one of his primary responsibilities is to foster unity within and between our parishes. Additionally, our parish community works to serve the broader community through our acts of charity and concern for others, especially the poor among us. Here, all are welcome.
Father Ben Lokidiriyo
Father Ben was born and raised in a remote area of Turkana, Kenya. He is the eldest of three, and his father died when he was young. Father Ben is the only member of his family to attend any school level, despite his family’s poverty. He received a Catholic education and a master’s degree in International Relations from an American university in Nairobi. Thanks to the generosity of Catholic missionaries and well-wishers, Fr Ben worked with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in Kenya for a time and also worked as an HIV/ AIDS testing and counseling officer in Kenya. He came to the U.S. in 2015 with the assistance of a Cincinnati aid worker he met in Nairobi. Father began to discern his calling to the priesthood when he was 21. He was attracted to the Catholic faith and the priesthood by the lives of Catholic missionaries who evangelized and served his Kenyan community. Their ministries, the witness of their simple living, and their prayer life called me to investigate the priesthood. After multiple trips to the U.S. and staying in Milford, he began studying at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary. His first parish contact was St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Milford. He served as a transitional deacon at St. Leo the Great Parish in North Fairmont. Father Bens’ ordination was in May of 2020. He then became the Parochial Vicar at St. Andrew and Elizabeth Seton parishes. I also look forward to meeting and serving the people entrusted to my care – to celebrate, learn from and walk with them, supported by the Sacraments and ministries.
Father Jeff Kemper
Fr. Jeff is one of ten children and grew up in Finneytown, a northern Suburb of Cincinnati (which neither the East nor West side claim). He attended St. Vivian school, St. Xavier High School, St. Gregory College Seminary, and Mount St. Mary’s Seminary. After ordination in 1979, he taught religion, was the chaplain for four years at Ursuline Academy and was a resident associate at All Saints Parish. He then served as the director of the Liturgy Office for Dayton and the Northern Area of the Archdiocese while serving as a resident associate at St. Helen Parish and Our Lady of Mercy Parish in Dayton. After graduate studies, he taught liturgical and sacramental theology at the Athenaeum of Ohio – Mt. St. Mary’s Seminary for 17 years. In 2008 he was appointed Pastor of St. John the Baptist Parish in Harrison, Ohio. While he loved his time and the people of that parish, he feels very welcomed into our family of parishes. He looks forward to the joys and challenges we face as individuals and communities of faith in the Church and world today.
Father Pat Crone
Father Pat grew up in Owensville and graduated from Clermont Northeastern High School. After high school, he went into the Air Force Reserves and attended the University of Cincinnati and the University of Dayton. He entered the Seminary in l963 and was ordained a priest in 1971. He feels privileged to have been involved in many different ministries: Parochial Vicar, high school teacher, Associate Youth Minister and Vocation Director for the Archdiocese, Dean, chaplain for hospitals, juvenile detention center, and county jails. He has been Pastor of six parishes (St. Andrew 1984 -1989). He retired in 2010 to help his sister care for their aging mother. Now he and his sister have a home in the Eastgate area, and they care for each other. Since he retired, Father has been the Weekend Associate at St. Veronica and St. John Fisher, chaplain at Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Temporary Parochial Administrator of six parishes, and helped at several parishes and rest homes with Masses, Confessions, Funerals, etc.
Father John Bok
Weekend Associate at St. Andrew
Father John was born and raised in Reading, Ohio. He attended Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Grade School and Roger Bacon High School. Upon graduating from RBHS in 1953, he entered the Franciscan Novitiate at St. Anthony Friary on Colerain Avenue. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1962 and spent one year as an intern priest until his first assignment in 1963 at Roger Bacon High School, where he was a science teacher, Dean of Students, and Principal. In 1981 he was asked to be the Director of St. Rita School for the Deaf, where he ministered for nine years. In 1990 the friars of the Province of St. John the Baptist elected him as their Provincial, an office he held for nine years until 1999. Fr. John was assigned to a parish in Galveston, Texas, that his province staffed. He was Pastor there for 11 years. In 2011 he returned to Cincinnati and is presently semi-retired. He helps out with Masses at several convents on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays and St. Andrew Church and St. Clement Church on the weekends. He works in the province’s fundraising office on Tuesday and Thursday mornings.