Friday, November 4, 2016

Yokota Air Base Japan ... Welcome Father Joshua!!!

Welcome to my new blog entitled "Chaplain's Corner"! People from my home in Indiana asked me before I left on October 26th if I could somehow keep them in the loop of my new experiences in the active duty Air Force. So, I thought a blog would be one nice way to fulfill the request.

I am now in Day 8 since I arrived in Japan on October 28th. I can't even believe I am here. When I started the accession process to join the active duty, my recruiter kept saying over and over again that I would be stationed at a base in the U.S.A. or "CONUS." CONUS is the acronym for Continental United States. Then, when I finally learned where I would be serving, another chaplain told me that I would be serving in Japan. It took me a week to finally come to grips with the impending adventure I would begin. So, Yokota Air Base in Fussa, Japan here I come!

The time table for my departure from Indiana was quite exhausting, but I finally made it here. I departed Indianapolis, Indiana on 26 October and headed to San Francisco, CA. After a short layover, I headed up to Seattle, Washington. That is where the long layover occurred. After retrieving my bags, I headed to the USO and checked in my bags. Then, I spoke with my sponsor in Japan. Fr. Oscar has been such a help and he advised me to get a hotel room so I could get some sleep before departing for Japan. I headed to a hotel near the airport, checked in, and finally had some dinner. Then, off to sleep for a few hours before I had to check in along with my bags for the final leg of my trip.

Finally, after a very very very long flight, I landed in Japan. I quickly retrieved my bags and was greeted by my sponsor, my Wing Chaplain and his wife, and several members of the Saint Michael the Archangel Catholic Community. We headed over to the Officer's Club for a nice lunch that featured an Asian Buffet. YUM!

In the last week since I arrived, I have been involved in in-processing for a two day experienced called "Right Start." I have been completing paperwork, I took a driver class, I found an apartment on base, I found a car, I drove said car (on the left side of the road where I was sitting on the right side of the car - weird), and finally I have slowly got into a groove in the life of an active duty Air Force Chaplain. So far so good!

I have been blessed to be able to begin this journey. I am so thankful for my family, my friends, my Bishop back in Indiana, my military Archbishop in DC, my brother priests, my friends at the 122nd Fighter Wing in Fort Wayne, IN, and all the other people who have supported me in this journey. Please stay tuned for more updates and have a blessed day!

(Base Chapel ready for Catholic Mass)

Sunday, April 8, 2012


Okay... "God is Near - Reflections of a Diocesan Priest" is back! I am not the best blogger in the world, but once in awhile, I will post something. :)

Happy Easter to you! I hope and pray your Easter goes wonderfully.

Last night, at the great Easter Vigil, I was thankful to be part of this powerful liturgy at Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church in Noblesville, IN. Fr. Shocklee, our Associate Pastor, did a wonderful job as the celebrant. I especially liked his homily that was both in English and Spanish. Well done Fr. Shocklee. Fr. Metzger and I helped with some different parts of the liturgy, especially when all three of us helped with the confirmations. This was a first for me and it was powerful.

The Easter Season lasts for about 8 weeks or so. Please keep the Alleluias going and enjoy this wonderful time of the year.

I would encourage you to follow along each day with the Season of Easter because we can never exhaust the mysteries and wonder of our God and His Risen Son Jesus Christ who is Lord forever and ever. Visit

Jesus Christ is Risen, Alleluia! He is Risen Indeed, Alleluia Alleluia!!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Catholic Schools Week... 2012

Catholic Schools Week began on  29 January and will continue through 5 February. It is a good opportunity each year to pray for our Catholic Schools and for our families. At Guerin Catholic High School, we will have an All School Mass at 9:00am this week. The most recent 29 January edition of The Catholic Moment, the diocesan newspaper of the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana, had a great story about Catholic Schools Week, including all the activities that our Catholic Schools have organized. It gave me some great ideas for the future. Normally, Catholic Schools will celebrate extra Masses and have open houses and additional activities for students, families and the greater community.

Please pray for our Catholic Schools. Pray especially for families who desire to one day send their children to these wonderful places where students can grow in their faith and also learn a great many things. Finally, pray for our teachers, administrators, priests and religious who work tirelessly to make our Catholic Schools a blessing to our world.

The theme of the 2012 Catholic Schools Week is "Faith. Academics. Service" according to the National Catholic Educational Association. Their website gives the following explanation for this year's theme: 

"The theme focuses on three priorities that Catholic schools establish that make them stand out from other educational institutions. Children are taught faith – not just the basics of Christianity, but how to have a relationship with God. Academics, which in Catholic schools are held to very high standards, help each child reach his or her potential. Service, the giving of one’s time and effort to help others, is taught both as an expression of faith and good citizenship."

Another wonderful resource that includes some question and answer on Catholic Schools Week can be found here.

I am proud to be part of a Catholic School in Noblesville, Indiana. St. Theodore Guerin High School (Guerin Catholic High School). It is a special school that has only been in existence for about eight years. Since starting my ministry there in July of 2011, I have already seen the benefit to so many people. Our students lives are being positively influenced and our teachers are our super heroes. They do a fine job and we are blessed.

Finally, I would also encourage you to read more about Catholic Schools from the perspective of a Bishop. Bishop Timothy L. Doherty, the current Ordinary of the Diocese of Lafyette-in-Indiana, himself has had extensive experience in Catholic Schools from his many years serving these schools as a priest and now as a bishop. He wrote two articles about Catholic Schools. Please read those in their entirety here (2011) and here (2012). Enjoy, God bless and please pray for Catholic Schools. 

Bishop Ricken approves new association for diocesan priests in Wisconsin

The Badger Catholic: Bishop Ricken approves new association for diocesan priests.

I learned about this type of association in seminary. I realize that diocesan priests are different than religious priests, but associations for diocesan priests are wonderful and can provide amazing opportunities for priests to encourage one another through prayer and fraternity. Some other great associations for diocesan priests are the Companions of the Cross and the Companions of Christ. I did some investigating on those two groups and believe each one to be a huge blessing. Please pray for all priests!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Winter is here! Happy Ordinary Time... This Week: National Vocations Awareness Week!

Here I sit on January 12th, 2012 in 4th Period of Freshman Theology at Guerin Catholic High School. The kids just finished up taking a quiz on the Trinity and are watching a video. It just started to snow today, which helps us all get back into the proper frame of mind that - yes - it is actually winter. Monday and Tuesday of this week were teaser days with over 50 degress out. Yes, people were out golfing at a few golf courses. By the way, please take a look at how our construction is going on the new academic wing at Guerin Catholic High School. Click here to check that out.

Advent and Christmas have come and gone. Now, the Church is in Ordinary Time. I have been enjoying this week after Christmas which ended on Monday January 9th with the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. This week, the scripture readings from Mass have been interesting, especially hearing from 1 Samuel and the Gospel of Mark. I have especially enjoyed hearing about Hannah and her son Samuel.  Just a few days ago, Samuel woke up from his sleep multiple times not by Eli but rather by the Lord. It was from that encounter that Samuel realized that God was calling him to a special vocation in his life - to be a prophet of the Lord.

This leads very well into what the Church of the United States is celebrating this week - National Vocation Awareness Week (January 9 - 14). Why? Well, the Church is calling the faithful to support and pray for all the men and women who serve the Church as priests, deacons and religious brothers and sisters. But, just as important, the Church is calling her members to pray for more dedicated, holy priests, deacons and consecrated men and women to answer their respective vocational calls. Just today, two of our diocesan seminarians were at Guerin Catholic for the Mass at 10:30am. It was great to have them serve at the Mass and spend some time with us. And, last week at our All School Mass, we had three other diocesan seminarians with us along with many former students of Guerin Catholic High School. It has been a great couple of weeks.

Let us all keep praying for vocations and enjoy Ordinary Time...

God bless,
Fr. Janko

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Happy Advent, Merry Christmas & Happy New Year 2012!

Merry Almost Christmas!


Blogging is something I need to dedicate more time to doing. It can be a very fruitful endeavor to share nice reflections and that was the reason I decided to start a blog. One "blogger" that is somewhat a hero of mine is Fr. John Hollowell. His blog, On This Rock, is something I visit regularly. Fr. Hollowell, a priest of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis, is doing wonderful work as a priest. I have kind of asked him to be available to me this year as I began working at Guerin Catholic High School in July of 2011. He currently serves as Associate Pastor at Saint Malachy in Brownsburg and is a chaplain at Cardinal Ritter Jr./Sr. High School. He has a lot to share about Catholic High School ministry, the priesthood and the Church in general.

As for me, I have enjoyed working at Guerin Catholic High School. I am just about half a year into this ministry and people have been very gracious and willing to support me. The men and women I work with are so very dedicated to our wonderful vision statement at Guerin Catholic: Lead with Humility, Serve with Love and Trust in Providence. Things are also very exciting around here as we have begun construction on our new Academic Wing, which we hope and pray will be ready for the fall of 2012. I am thankful to be working with people who are teaching me many things about service, ministry and trusting in God's plans. His ways are always better than our ways. One person I am thankful for is our president Paul Lunsford. He shared a nice message recently in his Christmas Message. He has been a great example to me in my life from my days at Carmel High School and Our Lady of Mount Carmel. He is doing a fine job and has a lot on his shoulders with trying to raise money for our school. Please pray for him and for Guerin Catholic High School.

I hope and pray that your family, friends and you have a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful 2012. You will be in my prayers and once again, I will try to blog a little bit more. I know that I have some reflections to share about my experiences as a priest serving our Church.

May God bless you and keep you as we once again welcome His Son into our lives and into our hearts,

Father Joshua M. Janko

Friday, November 11, 2011

Race for Vocations - 2012 - Our 5th Year "Running"

5th Year for the Race for Vocations!!!

Join us on May 5, 2012 to participate in the Indianapolis 500 mini-marathon or 5k race while praying for and promoting vocations at the same time!!!  Sign up today!  Registration for the mini typically fills up by Thanksgiving! 

Watch this promotional video to learn more about the Race for Vocations!!

To register for the Mini-Marathon or 5k:

To register for the Race for Vocations team:

Join us for the 5th year! 
+ 5th year for the race!
+ 50 groups and teams running the race!
+ 500 runners!
+ 5,000 dollars raise for vocations!
+ 50,000 prayers for vocations!

If you have any questions about the race contact:  
Matt Faley (
Megan Fish (