St. James Parish at 1010 S. Lansing St, Mason, MI 48854-1920 US - Fr. Kusitino Cobona
Fr. Kusitino Cobona
I began my education at Wairiki Catholic School in 1963. In 1971, I continued my studies at St. John’s College, Cawaci, Ovalau. I graduated in 1976 and entered the Pacific Regional Seminary in 1977. I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from the seminary in 1984. I was ordained a Marist priest on Dec.1, 1984 with two other cousins.
My first assignment was as an Associate Priest to my home parish, Holy Cross Parish, Wairiki, Taveuni. In 1987, I was assigned Associate Pastor to Fr. Michael Bransfield SM at Immaculate Conception Parish where I became heavily involved with Marriage Encounter, Choice and Antioch Programs for the Youth, Parish Renewal Weekends and with the introduction of the Parish Evangelizing Cell System which we learned from St. Boniface Parish, Pembroke Pines, Florida.
In 1990, I worked as a Diocesan Facilitator at the Pacific Regional Seminary, helping in the formation of students as Diocesan Priests. In 1991, I did some studies at St. Paul University, Ottawa, Canada and did a Pastoral Renewal where I decided to become a Diocesan Priest. In 1993, I took my first assignment as a Diocesan priest to be Pastor of St. Elizabeth Parish, Vudibasoga, Macuata. Also in 1995, I was in East Asian Pastoral Institute, Manila, Philippines for a renewal program. And in the year 2000, I was appointed Pastor of St. Anne’s Parish, Napuka until I came to the United States in 2004.
I am no stranger to the Diocese of Lansing because during the summer months of 1991, I was with Fr. Phil Gallagher at Holy Trinity Parish, Fowler. He taught us at the seminary in Fiji and we became good friends. In 1996, I was with Fr. Doug Osborn at St. John Vianney Parish, Flint and in 1999, I was in St. Michael Parish, Grand Ledge when Fr. Bob McGraw was away on sabbatical leave in Rome.
In response to the huge demand for priests here in the Diocese of Lansing, I was accepted and welcomed by Bishop Carl Mengeling and took my first assignment at St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Ann Arbor on July 1, 2004. In 2007, I was assigned to help Fr. Tom Butler at St. Anthony Parish, Hillsdale while he went on a sick leave. When he returned I was then assigned to be an Associate Pastor to Fr. Ken Coughlin at Holy Family Parish, Grand Blanc. I became involved with Christ Renews His Parish and also introduced the Parish Evangelizing Cell System in the parish. I am also a Fourth Degree member of the Knights of Columbus and have been their Chaplain since 2007.