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 (ST. LOUS) – Friar Nicolas Marie James Casas Monco, O.P., of the Order of Preachers (Dominicans), Province of St. Albert the Great (Central Province), was ordained to the priesthood on Saturday, May 11, 2013, at 11:00 am, at St. Margaret of Scotland Church, by the hands of Most Reverend Edward M. Rice, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of St. Louis. Two Dominican friars of the same province, Friar Luke Christopher Barder, O.P., Friar Jude Gerald McPeak, O.P., were also ordained to the diaconate on May 11, together with Friar Peter Damian Harris, O.P., a Dominican brother of the Province of St. Martin de Porres (Southern Province).

Friar Nicolas Marie James Casas Monco, O.P.Brother Nicolas Marie James Casas Monco, O.P. , born in Evanston, Illinois, is one of two children of Dean Monco and Cristina Casas-Monco. After graduating in 2002 from Fenwick High School, a Dominican school in Oak Park, Illinois, he attended Claremont-McKenna College in Claremont, California, and was awarded a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Philosophy. Brother Dominic entered the Order of Preachers in August of 2006, making his first religious vows at St. Dominic Priory in Denver, Colorado in 2007. He made his solemn or perpetual vows at the Basilica of St. Louis, King of France, in St. Louis, Missouri, in June of 2012. Brother Nicolas was ordained a deacon on September 15, 2012. Brother Nicolas pursued theological studies at Aquinas Institute of Theology in Saint Louis, Missouri, and graduated with a dual Master of Arts/Master of Divinity degree on May 10, 2013.

Brother Nicolas’ ministerial experience during his priestly formation has included a pastoral internship at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Madison, Wisconsin, assisting at Cathedral School in St. Louis, Missouri, clinical pastoral work at Presbyterian Hospital in Albuquerque, New Mexico, a Pastoral Year at Purdue University’s campus ministry, and serving his diaconate internship at Little Flower Parish in Richmond Heights, Missouri.

Following ordination to the priesthood, Brother Nicolas’ first assignment is to the faculty of Fenwick High School in Oak Park, Illinois.

Friar Luke Christopher Barder, O.P.Friar Luke Christopher Barder, O.P.Brother Luke Christopher Barder, O.P., born in West Lafayette, Indiana, is one of three children of Timothy Barder and Anamaria Carrizo Barder. After graduating in 2001 from Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, he attended Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, and was awarded a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and Religious Studies. Brother Luke entered the Order of Preachers in August of 2007, making his first religious vows at St. Dominic Priory in Denver, Colorado in 2008. He made his solemn or perpetual vows at the Basilica of St. Louis, King of France, in St. Louis, Missouri, in June of 2012.
Brother Luke’s ministerial experience has included participation in a program on Inter-Religious Dialogue in Cairo, Egypt, campus ministry work at McKendree University in Lebanon, Illinois, clinical pastoral work at Abbot Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a Pastoral Year’s work at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Madison, Wisconsin, and he assists in pastoral work at St. Justin Martyr Parish in Sunset Hills, Missouri.

Following ordination to the diaconate, Brother Luke will continue theological studies toward a dual Master of Arts/Master of Divinity degree at Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis, Missouri, as part of his priestly formation process.

Brother Jude Gerald McPeak, O.P., born in Denver, Colorado, is one of two children of Gerald McPeak and Reynea Wilson. After graduating in 2002 from Evergreen High School in Evergreen, Colorado, he attended Regis University in Denver, Colorado, and was awarded a bachelor’s degree in English and Religious Studies. Brother Jude entered the Order of Preachers in August of 2007, making his first religious vows at St. Dominic Priory in Denver, Colorado in 2008. He made his solemn or perpetual vows at the Basilica of St. Louis, King of France, in St. Louis, Missouri, in June of 2012.

Brother Jude’s ministerial experience has included an internship at St. Leonard House in Chicago, Illinois, working at St. Anthony’s Hospice in St. Louis, Missouri, clinical pastoral work at United Hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota, a Pastoral Year’s work in campus ministry at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, and work in the Vocations Office in Chicago, Illinois and at St. Dominic Priory in St. Louis, Missouri. He also assists in ministries at St. Pius V Parish in St. Louis, Missouri.

Following ordination to the diaconate, Brother Jude will continue theological studies toward a dual Master of Arts/Master of Divinity degree at Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis, Missouri, as part of his priestly formation process.

Brother Peter Damian Harris, O.P., born in Kingston, Jamaica, is one of three children of Edward Gordon Harris and Rema Pink. After graduating in 1997 from Holy Trinity High School in Kingston, he attended Divine Word College in Epworth, Iowa, and was awarded a bachelor’s degree in Cross-Cultural Studies in 2005. Brother Peter Damian entered the Order of Preachers in August of 2008, making his first religious vows at St. Albert the Great Priory in Irving, Texas in 2009. He made his solemn or perpetual vows Camp Allen Retreat Center in Navasota, Texas, in May of 2012.

Brother Peter Damian’s ministerial experience has included an internship with NGO-United Nations and El Salvador, ministerial work at Covenant House in St. Louis, Missouri, clinical pastoral work at Dallas Children’s Hospital in Dallas, Texas, preaching in Atlanta, Georgia, and providing ministerial assistance at St. Elizabeth, Mother of John the Baptist Parish in St. Louis, Missouri.

Following ordination to the diaconate, Brother Peter Damian will continue theological studies toward a dual Master of Arts/Master of Divinity degree at Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis, Missouri, as part of his priestly formation process.

Aquinas Institute of Theology is a St. Louis-based Roman Catholic graduate school of theology and ministry sponsored by the Dominican Order. Impelled by the Catholic faith and the Dominican mission, Aquinas Institute of Theology educates men and women to preach, to teach, to minister and to lead.

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