Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament
Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is, perhaps, the best way to enter into prayer and divine union with our Lord outside of the holy Mass. Adoration is like sitting quietly before the throne of God in worship with all the angels and saints. Please consider coming to spend time in adoration and prayer.

Normally, there will be Eucharistic Adoration from 8 am to 9 am on Friday. These times may be interrupted by Funerals and other events that are out of our control.

To confirm weekly times for adoration please see the Parish Calendar.

Art & Environment
The Art and Environment Committee is a group of people who pray with needle and thread, fabric and watering cans.

Our purpose is to make our sanctuary a beautiful place to worship God, and to honor him with attention to His house. We celebrate liturgical time with a hands-on approach, changing the colors of the altar and adornments as the church year commences in Advent, through Ordinary Time, Lent and Easter.

Our crew is a group of hardworking and dedicated individuals who are generous with their gifts of time and talent. We invite all who would like to join us. New ideas and approaches are welcomed.

Contact the office for more information

Bereavement Ministry
This ministry offers spiritual support to and prayers for those suffering the pain of separation from loved ones. At times when grief seems overwhelming, compassionate and caring advocacy is available.

In addition, the Bereavement Ministry has sponsored interesting and informative presentations on the topic of handling and surviving grief.

“Care Notes” Pamphlets are placed in the Church entry on various topics related to positive grief management. Books on grief are located for loan to parishioners in the bookcases in room 204. All are welcome.

Contact Person: Barb Johnson

Building and Grounds
Building and grounds committee works with the parish priest to oversee the maintenance and upkeep of the church, both inside and outside of the church, parish center and rectory.
We also give input to the pastor on capital improvement projects for the church, parish center, and rectory.
Chairman: Joe Yockey

Joe Yockey – Please click this link to send an email to the Building and Grounds Committee

The cemetery was established in the late 1800’s. It is located at the west edge of Byron and is approximately 2 1/2 acres in size. About one third of the acreage has been developed for burials.

At this time, the price per grave is $1,200 which includes perpetual care. Grave opening and closing fee is $1,200. Cremains opening and closing fee is $600. Monuments and markers must be approved by the Priest. There is a $100 fee for inscription approval. The cemetery committee must approve excavation and foundations.

Mowing, trimming and snow plowing is done by private contractors to insure the beauty of our cemetery. The mowing of the un-plotted portion is done by the cemetery committee, as well as spring clean-up, grave and monument staking, tree trimming, filling and seeding of graves, and other miscellaneous maintenance.

Cemetery Clean up Dates:  March 1-30  and November 1-15.   All decorations will be removed and discarded on these dates.   Cemetery Rules 


Mass is said on Memorial Day at cemetery to honor all military personnel.

Funeral Luncheon Ministry
The Funeral Ministry does the planning, preparation, and service for the funeral luncheon for parish members. The family and their guests return to the Parish Hall after the internment for the meal. Volunteer efforts are coordinated through the head of the Funeral Luncheon Ministry.

If your loved one has passed away and you are having a funeral at Saint Mary Parish, your luncheon can be arranged by either calling the parish office or by speaking with the director at the funeral home. New members are welcome.

Contact person: Mary Weber & Barb Kane

Liturgical Ministries

Altar Server

This is the ministry that assists the Priest during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and other Liturgical functions. Open to all who are old enough to understand the duties of assisting the Priest. Training sessions are required before being assigned to a Mass. New servers will serve with more experienced servers until proficiency is demonstrated. New servers are always welcome.

Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist

Lay members of Christ’s faithful, designated by the diocesan Bishop, in accordance of the norm of law, for a specified time (presently three years—renewable for three more) are appointed to assist a Priest with the distribution of the Holy Eucharist and the Precious Blood during the celebration of Holy Mass. Training/indoctrination sessions are held to familiarize the person with the responsibilities of this office.


Greeters are present 15 minutes before Saturday night and Sunday morning Masses and greet the arriving parishioners at they arrive. They are stationed at the various entrances of the church and make sure people feel welcome at St. Mary’s.


This ministry proclaims the sacred scripture at the Holy Sacrifice of Mass. The duties include processing with the Book of Gospels, proclaiming the Word of God assigned for the liturgy, offering the prayers of the faithful, and making any assigned announcements. Training/indoctrination sessions are held to familiarize a person with duties. New members are welcome.

Nursing Home Ministry

Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist for Neighbors Nursing Home


The ministry of assisting the congregation before, during, and after Mass.
Before – greeting people as they arrive and assist with finding a place to participate.
During – assist anyone that needs help for health or other reasons,
– take up the collection, sealing it in the provided bag,
– seeing the collection is placed in the locked area.
After – distributing the weekly parish bulletin,
– assisting anyone that needs help getting to their vehicle.
New ushers are always welcome.

Money Counting Ministry
It is the goal of all properly trained volunteer money counters to accurately count and deposit all parish collections. Each individual envelope is opened, verified, and the dollar amount recorded on the envelope (for posting to each individual’s record.) All information is to be kept confidential.

The aim of the ministry is to have two teams of four volunteers who alternate weeks.

Contact person: Amy Paul

Music Ministry
Music is integral to the way we worship God. Music provides a palette that words or silence alone doesn’t fully illustrate, a glorious way for our response to God to resonate. All musicians with humble hearts are welcome to serve in some capacity here, and the musical opportunities are several. We have an Adult Choir and a Children’s Choir, and some other small musical groupings. We are blessed with accomplished accompanists and cantors, and are looking to add more instrumentalists. We have a privilege to provide music for all Masses, funerals, and weddings. All ages are welcome to participate! Come make a joyful sound with us!

Contact person: Mrs. Mary Pearson


Parish Photographer
The parish photographer takes photos at special events held at Saint Mary Catholic Church.

Contact person: Mark Rasmussen

Prayer Chain (Saint Mary)
The prayer chain is an email list of parishioners who agree to pray for specific submitted requests. We also have members who have agreed to phone requests on to members who do not have email.

To join the prayers, or to submit a request for prayer, email or call

Prayer Shawl Ministry
The Prayer shawl Ministry’s mission is to prayerfully and lovingly create handmade prayer shawls for people who are suffering a loss or a life crisis. Prayer shawls are also given for joyful occasions and scarves for first communicants and confirmants. Meetings are held once a month September through May at the parish. New members are welcome.
R.C.I.A. (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adult)
This ministry is designed to prepare and welcome young adults and adults into the Catholic faith; primarily at the Easter Vigil Mass.It is also designed to help un-catechized baptized adults to learn more about their faith and be able to complete the Sacraments of Initiation.

Anyone interested to join the Catholic faith or learn more about their Catholic Faith can do so by contacting the parish office at 815-234-7431.

Religious Education Ministry

A catechist should be a person whose life bears witness to that faith. A catechist needs to have an understanding of basic teachings of the Catholic Church and a willingness to teach it. We have a home study course that can be started at any time for those who want to refresh their knowledge of church teachings.

Classes are in session from September through April 

Kindergarden – 8th Grades: Catechists are needed to share their faith in a classroom setting with another adult teacher. Classes are held Sunday mornings starting with the 9:30am Mass and then to A Family Faith Formation program.  The usually meet 2-3 times a month .  

High School Youth Group: meets on Sunday evenings (the same Sundays that Religious Education classes are scheduled) from 6-8pm. Adults are asked to share their faith, facilitate discussions, and occasionally chaperone outings.

Contact person:

Stephanie Schermerhorn CRE

See the Religious Education page for more information and schedules.