Father Glenn H. Harris, St. Ann, East Moline; St. John the Baptist, Rapids City, and St. Mary, Hampton, IL
Submitted by: Carl Wenning
From the start of the pandemic through today, Fr. Harris has been a constant online presence for us. Not only has he live streamed Mass every day, he has also broadcast live the liturgy of the hours at noon, 3 p.m., and 8 p.m. daily. He always starts off with a chatty conversation with followers, responding to posted comments. Following that, he rings a large outdoor bell praying for the end of the pandemic, and then continues inside to the Church where he leads prayers, songs, commemoration of Divine Mercy, and so much more. Even at the end of an extremely busy day, he will make time for his followers even if he has to delay vespers until as late as 9:30 p.m. Even then, he stays online to comfort those who have lost loved ones or are struggling with the pandemic, and to answer questions about anything we like to ask - questions ranging from theology, Church law, apologetics, his leisurely activities, and even his cat Francois. He comforts his listeners, many of whom are shut-ins who have little opportunity to speak or meet with others. My wife and I have found Father's "fireside chats" to be extremely comforting in this time of peril.
More than anything, Fr. Harris has kept the spark of faith alive during this pandemic. When so many Catholics have fallen away from the practice of their faith (many likely never to return), Fr. Harris has urged us on reminding us of the presence of and need for God in our lives. He has filled a big void in many peoples' spiritual lives during these dark times. He is a savior of souls so to speak.
I know of no other priest within the Diocese of Peoria (Illinois) who has worked so hard and so ceaselessly on behalf of his parishioners (past and present). To me and my wife Carolyn, Fr. Harris is a shining lamp upon a hill surrounded by darkness. He is a sterling example of what we believe to be the ideal pastor of souls. He is indeed a "Hero Priest!"
Fr. Harris is extremely knowledgeable, warm, inviting, dedicated to the salvation of souls, service to God and His Church. If every Christian were like Fr. Harris, every Christian would become Catholic!