Otolski described Kappes, who grew up on Indy’s south side in Beech Grove, as “a faithful priest who's a smart guy. He’s a person who’s very intelligent with a lot of different interests, somebody who's a good athlete.” As a high school wrestler, he went to the state finals.
Now affiliated with St. Dionysius Catholic Cathedral, Athens, Kappes is participating in a pilot program set up by the Vatican and the government in Greece in which he and other Catholics will earn advanced degrees in Greek Orthodox theology, according to the archdiocesan Web site. Kappes said in a 2009 interview with The Criterion that he later hoped to assist in “an official commission between the Vatican and the Greek Orthodox Church to try to overcome a lot of the dissensions that historically have divided us.”
The communications director reflected, "There are a lot of questions and really no answers. The only thing anybody knows for certain is that he’s missing. There's no evidence ... he’s been actually kidnapped or that he’s dead.”
Otolski is urging Hoosiers to “pray for his safety and quick return to the United States. We’re all hopeful there's going to be a good outcome and we’ll be seeing him back here in Indiana soon.”