It was a typical day for Fr. Charles Bolser, CSV. He started out by offering Mass at Addolorata Villa, a senior living community in suburban Wheeling, IL, sponsored by the Franciscan Sisters of Chicago.

Fr. Charles Bolser offers grace at Saint Viator High School’s Million Dollar Classic.

Later in the day, he spent some time at Saint Viator High School, visiting with students, faculty and administrators in the building. He will end the day with adults with disabilities served by St. Coletta’s of Wisconsin, at one of their facilities in northern Illinois.

In between his visits, he is relaxing in his suite at the Province Center, where he can look out his window and see the rolling grounds dotted with trees and shrubs — and all the birds and squirrels they attract.

It hardly sounds like the stuff of a birthday celebration, but Fr. Charlie says he likes it that way.

“I’m very happy to sit back and relax,” Fr. Charlie says. “I’m enjoying the sunshine, the wind and watching trees bend over as the wind blows.”

Fr. Bolser celebrates Mass on stage with cast and crew of the Saint Viator High School musical.

He’s also fielding calls, text messages and emails from his many, many friends at schools and parishes where he has served over his more than 60 years as a Viatorian.

His career began as a teacher at Griffin High School in Springfield before joining the administration at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas, at Saint Viator High School and at Cristo Rey St. Martin College Prep in Waukegan.

He also has spent years in pastoral work, serving as pastor of Maternity BVM Parish in Bourbonnais, before his last assignment as pastor of St. Viator Parish in Chicago.

Yet, even in retirement, he continues to stay busy. He leads two Bible study groups, one for men and another for women, while celebrating Mass regularly at Holy Family Catholic Community in Inverness, as well as with the Benedictine Sisters of Chicago and at a pair of senior living communities in Arlington Heights.

In reflecting on another trip around the sun, Fr. Charlie put it this way: “This the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad! Every day is a gift. Some more than others. Many, many thanks to all for your very kind wishes. The journey that we share is filled with so many friends and relatives that as we walk together we feed each other along the way. Peace and love to each of you along the way. You are gift indeed.”