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Our Leadership


Father Bruce Forman

On this Web site, you will learn about the faith journey of parishioners over the past 150 years. You will share in their struggles and celebrations. It is a beautiful story of Catholic people working together to build a community of faith. 

The parishioners of this time marvel at the legacy which has been handed over to us. The priests, deacons, women religious and committed laity of Sts. Peter and Paul Parish worked tirelessly over a century-and-a-half to forge a Catholic presence in the historic Soulard neighborhood. Their efforts in worship, education, evangelization and social ministry have built a solid foundation on which to celebrate and proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ.


We also look to the future, hoping that the energy, hard work, generosity and creativity of the staff and parishioners of today’s parish will provide a solid foundation in faith for generations to come.


May those of us who have joined the pilgrimage of the past 150 years and have now crossed the threshold of a new millennium walk in the presence of the Lord giving thanks and praise for what has been, for what is now, and for what the Lord has in store for the parish of Sts. Peter and Paul which is beyond all our imagining.


With much gratitude,


Rev. Bruce H. Forman,

Pastor (1990-present)


Deacon Tom Gorski

Deacon  Tom Gorski was ordained in Chicago in 1979. He then served in the  diocese of Arlington, Virginia, from 1982 to 1993 and in St. Louis since 1993. In all three places Tom has focused on family ministry, in  particular the sacraments of Baptism and Marriage. Tom has also served  with the Matrimonial Tribunal in each diocese. He views these two  sacraments as particular moments for many people who are “unchurched” or  who are searching for a church to which they can connect to be welcomed  home. He finds Sts. Peter and Paul a parish very responsive to people  who are searching. Tom will admit that he very much enjoys  preaching. His homilies try to connect the gospel message to the real  life experience of the people of the parish and our mutual spiritual  journey. He also writes a number of homilies each year for a website  (Homilies Alive!).
The Gorski  family consists of Tom, his wife Elsie, and two grown children – Josh  who is in the Air Force, married to Fancee Long and their son, Orion Joshua Gorski born April 26, 2013 and Marie, married to Doug Mahne, and their  children, Elijah and Scarlet. Tom spent 33 years in the airline business with TWA in a variety of cities and 10 years with Catholic Charities as Vice President of  Family and Community Services retiring in 2009.


Deacon Dennis M. Chitwood

Born in St. Louis, Deacon Dennis attended St. Bernadette Grade School in Lemay and Bishop DuBourg High School in South St. Louis. He attended Harris Teacher College, Washington University, Pope Paul VI Institute of Catechetical and Pastoral Studies. In 1994, he earned a Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies from Aquinas Institute of Theology. Deacon Dennis worked as a purchasing manager at Vincent Metal Service from 1967-1972, as a regional manager for ITT Harper from 1972-1975, and was president/owner of Chitwood Special Products from 1975-1992. From 1994-2000, he served as director of the Catholic Newman Center on the campus of the University of Missouri-St. Louis. He also was director/liaison for the Catholic Charismatic Center (now Catholic Renewal Center) from 1994-2004. He was vice president of sales and marketing for CK Plastics Inc. from 2004-2005.

Service in the Archdiocese: Deacon Dennis's first assignment was at St. Mary Magdalen in South St. Louis, where he served as a pastoral associate and oversaw teen and adult formation efforts. In 1989, he went to Sts. Peter and Paul in Soulard, where he was a pastoral associate. In 1994, Deacon Dennis became director of the Catholic Newman Center and campus ministry for the University of Missouri-St. Louis. During that time, he helped implement programs such as the Spring Break Alternative, Taize prayer, Hunger Awareness Week and the Awakening Retreat.   In 2000, Deacon Dennis went to Cure of Ars in Shrewsbury, where he oversaw young adult ministry. In 2002, he was assigned to All Saints in University City, where he also worked with young adult ministry. He went to Annunciation in Webster Groves in 2005 and served as Pastoral Associate until 2009.  He is currently in service at Sts. Peter and Paul in Soulard and continues ministry through Genesis Ministry.

Other ministries: Deacon Dennis provided service to Teens Encounter Christ in numerous roles, including retreat director, spiritual director and board member. In the 1980s, he co-founded the Silver Trumpets youth ministry and served that group for 10 years. He also was the spiritual director of Upper Room young adult ministry, and was a chaplain at St. Louis University and with the Boy Scouts of America.  He also taught deacons Advance Homiletic at Paul VI Institute, and was an instructor of Theophostic Healing Ministry and Catholic charismatic spirituality.  Deacon Dennis has served in several other capacities, including organizer of Celebrate Jesus 2000 program, the archdiocesan Reach Out program for teens, the Papal Space Bridges planning team, the planning team for Pope John Paul II’s 1999 pastoral visit to St. Louis, Catholic Men for Christ planning team, Mission Metro St. Louis, the Global Day of Prayer St. Louis planning team and he was a board member for the archdiocesan Office of Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs.   Deacon Dennis received the Student Life Award UMSL 1997 and Service To Mankind Award from Sertoma 2009  In 2005, he co-founded and presently ministers with Genesis Ministry, which offers spiritual counseling, teaching, preaching, parish missions and retreats.  In 2010, guided by the Holy Spirit, he began a retreat called SPIN Married Couples Retreat. 
Service outside of the Archdiocese: In 1998, Deacon Dennis joined the mission team with Renewal Ministries of Ann Arbor, Mich. With that group, he made mission trips in Ghana in 1998, Uganda in 1999 and Kenya in 2005
About Deacon Dennis: He and his wife, Elizabeth, are in their 50th year of marriage and have three children and 14 grandchildren. They currently attend Sts. Peter and Paul Parish in Soulard. In his free time Deacon Dennis enjoys golfing and having dinner with friends.



Sister Rose Marie Groppe, CJ

I was born in 1930 during the great depression.  My mother and father came from Germany and settled in St. Louis.  I am the oldest of three siblings; I have a brother and a sister.  As many families did back then, we struggled but my parents always managed to keep a roof over our head, food on our table and the opportunity for an excellent education.  

I entered the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet in 1950 at the age of 20.  I taught primary grades for 25 years.  I went to get my masters in Pastoral Studies at Loyola in Chicago in 1982, and have been doing pastoral Associate work since then.  I have been a Pastoral Associate at Sts. Peter & Paul since 1985.  

Sts. Peter & Paul Parish is the church community of my dreams.  I truly enjoy the way we celebrate Eucharist.  We, our parish family, are present together because we want to be rather than just there to fulfill an “obligation.”  I grow spiritually at Sts. Peter & Paul because of the way we pray together, for our genuine concern for each other, and for our outreach to all of God’s people.  We also enjoy socializing together.   


God calls each of us to share the special gifts given to us to live a life of love and services and to build the Kingdom of God.  I am most grateful to God, to Father Bruce and to our parish family for the many opportunities I have to grow as a person and to share my gifts with God’s people.

Parish Council Leadership

Subpages (1): Parish Council
Web Updates,
Jul 23, 2013, 1:42 PM