Every year, officials with the Village of Arlington Heights recognize individuals who “go above and beyond for the community,” at the annual Hearts of Gold Awards event. On Sunday, Fr. Corey Brost, CSV, and Br. Michael Gosch, CSV, were among the recipients.

Fr. Corey Brost and Br. Michael Gosch accept the Heroic Heart of Gold award.

Specifically, they were chosen to receive the Heroic Heart of Gold award, for their work in accompanying young, immigrant men seeking asylum. The award “recognizes a person whose actions changed the trajectory of another person’s life.”

“We see real courage in the young men we accompany every day at Viator House,” Fr. Corey said in accepting the award.

In all, these two Viatorians were among 11 local residents recognized in categories that ranged from best neighbor, educator and mentor, to volunteer, community spirit and business leader, to name a few.

(L-R) first row: Chris Deger, Br. Gosch, Fr. Dan Hall. Second row: Fr. Jean-Didier Sohotode, Br. Rob Robertson, Fr. Chris Glancy, Fr. Brost, Br. John Avellaneda and Br. Marc-Innocent Prophète.

“It was a humbling experience to be recognized with so many other people from Arlington Heights, doing amazing work accompanying others,” Br. Gosch said. “At the same time, we are grateful to the Village of Arlington Heights for recognizing the work and value of immigrant youth seeking asylum.”

The sellout crowd of more than 300 learned how Fr. Brost and Br. Gosch started Viator House of Hospitality in 2017, with a mission of providing compassionate accompaniment for young immigrant men, seeking asylum. To date, their actions have changed more than 100 lives, or 112 young men from 27 nations at last count.

Viator House provides a supportive living environment where these young men can attend school, learn English, grow spiritually in their own faith traditions, access medical and mental health care, and work while they await their immigration proceedings and adapt to life in the U.S.

On hand at the event, to support the work of Br. Gosch and Fr. Brost, were several professed Viatorians as well as another table of Viator House staff members and volunteers. But those in the crowd were just as supportive. After Fr. Brost and Br. Gosch received their awards and expressed their thanks, they received a warm, heartfelt response.