Two Alumni Win 2016 Leading With Faith Awards

Father Martin M. Fleming ’66 M.A. and Kathleen M. Groh ’98 M.A. are two of the Catholic Spirit’s 2016 Leading with Faith winners honored at an August luncheon with Archbishop Bernard Hebda.

The Catholic Spirit has been bestowing this award on members of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis for 15 years. This year, it named five men and two women “who work in diverse fields but share a commitment to cherishing the dignity of their employees, sharing their talents and relying on God to see them through.”

Fleming, a retired Catholic priest of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, is the owner of Bethany Village, and founder and chairman emeritus of Trinity Sober Homes - both of which serve men fighting addiction. Fleming, ordained in 1952, said the presence of Jesus and faith in the workplace is essential and he begins each business meeting in prayer. “Keeping Jesus in the center of everything we do gives us the extra ‘oomph’ we need,” he said.

Groh served as a lay ecclesial minister for more than 35 years before becoming the regional director for Ignatian Volunteer Corps five years ago. Groh said she believes that faith is a verb: “That means we are called to make a difference in the lives of others,” she said. During her many years of work, Groh has come to realize that “God is absolutely delighted when we drop our agenda like the Good Samaritan and tend to the needs of others.”

Both Fleming and Groh have been blessed with inspiring people along their paths of faith.“It seems that on my life’s journey at every twist and turn there have been loving family members and good friends, challenging teachers, authors and publicists, wise figures and most of all, beautiful people of faith who have supported, encouraged and prayed for me along the way,” Groh said.