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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Cherokee County Parishes welcome Father Guenther

Friday, September 14, 2012

Father Daniel Guenther was welcomed recently as the new priest for both the Cherokee Immaculate Conception Church and the Marcus Holy Name Catholic Church. Guenther is looking forward to bringing a greater presence of God into the lives of his parishioners. Photo by Mike Leckband
In July, Immaculate Conception Catholic Church of Cherokee and Holy Name Catholic Church of Marcus welcomed their new priest, Father Daniel Guenther.

Guenther was born and raised in Sioux City, and is a 1973 graduate of Heelan High School. He went on to Loras College in Dubuque and began studying business and accounting.

He finished his college education as an English teacher, and after all that, he went on to the seminary.

He was ordained in May of 1982, and just completed 30 years in the priesthood.

He describes that most of his priesthood has been in the field of youth work. He spent years teaching and overseeing youth ministries and being part of high school administration.

He has served several different parishes during his time as a priest over the years, as well as being a Diocese Vocation Director, which involves working with young men who are interested in becoming a priest.

He also directed continuing education for clergy in the Sioux City Diocese for nearly nine years.

"Cherokee has a good parish and is a good community," said Guenther. He also stated that when he was a seminarian he lived in Cherokee. In fact, he lived in the same parish house in which he lives today.

Back in the summers of 1978 and 1979, Guenther was looking for a summer job and did maintenance work at the Cherokee Parish.

He also was part of the Clinical Pastoral Education at the Cherokee Mental Heath Institute in 1980. That program was, as he describes it, 10 weeks of fairly intense program dealing with counseling issues. He said that it was something all seminarians went through back then.

"So Cherokee was not totally new to me. I've spent some time here before," he added.

Besides getting to know his two new parishes, in which he spends a lot of highway time traveling back and forth, Guenther says thing are moving along nicely.

"I'm just trying to bring people a greater presence of God in their life, that's our mission," expressed Guenther.

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