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The Catholic News & Herald 1

March 30, 2001

March 30, 2001 Volume 10 t Number 29

S e r v i n g C a t h o l i c s in Western North Carolina in the Diocese of Charlotte

Inside Romero left legacy of justice, says speaker ... Page 5

Belmont Abbey welcomes new monks ... Page 7

Local News Faith formation experienced in community, says priest ... Page 9 Photos by Alesha M. Price Illustration by Tim Faragher

Deacon’s faith spreads through ministry ...Page 16

Every Week Entertainment ...Pages 10-11

Editorials & Columns ...Pages 12-13

“I will put my spirit in you that you may live, and I will settle you upon your land; thus you shall know that I am the Lord.” — Ezekiel 37: 13

Mothers, grandmothers, daughters join in spiritual, uplifting renewal By Alesha M. Price Staff Writer CHARLOTTE — Women of various ages, races and backgrounds gathered together in the spirit of oneness to listen to other women speak about their lives and to walk their faith journeys together. Over 200 women came to St. Matthew Church, the host of the second annual Women’s Day on March 24, in recognition of womanhood. This is the second celebration of its kind at the parish, and this year, the format was changed slightly to accommodate a crowd composed of women from parishes in the Piedmont-Triad area and other surrounding areas. “We wanted to keep it fresh and new this year. Last year, we had breakout sessions, and we heard from the women that they wanted to remain in a large group setting this year,” explained Kathy Murray, a member of

the parish steering committee. “Many times, when you attend these events, you sit with people you know, and you never get to meet anyone. We decided to get people to change tables, so they could become acquainted with other women.” Love and doves floated around the room throughout the day. Participants were asked to write their names and the names of women they admire and respect onto slips of paper later stapled into a love chain that was passed around the room to reflect the strength of all women and the links that bind them together. Doves adorned with the attendants’ wishes, dreams or heartfelt prayers were taped onto a “dream tree” on a wall in the parish center, said Murray. “I felt that this would be a spiritual day and good day to get closer to my faith,” said Carol Marchand from Our

Lady of Lourdes Church in Monroe. “Men have their outlet, but women need some type of interaction with spiritual partners. We have this spiritual need in our lives, and this brings it a little closer. I feel good about this and would recommend this to my daughter.” In keeping with the theme, “Empowered by Love,” the day included testimonies from three parishioners and a keynote address from Mercy Sister Jeanne Marie Kienast, pastoral associate at St. Matthew and head of the steering committee. Kathy Bartlett, Heather Martin and Lori Summeral shared aspects of their lives and demonstrated how women could grow in love of self and neighbor through the power of prayer and a dedication to their faith.

See WOMEN, page 8


2 The Catholic News & Herald journalist who has lived in the United States for 20 years and is on the executive board of the National Catholic Council for Hispanic Ministry. Catholics must fight racism in church, pope says VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Catholics must work to ensure that no one is excluded from their communities and that people of all races and cultures feel the church is their home, Pope John Paul II said. Marking the March 21 U.N. celebration of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, the pope said, “it is obligatory” that religious communities join international efforts to fight racism. Speaking at the end of his weekly general audience, Pope John Paul said international treaties, conferences and the upcoming U.N. World Conference Against Racism are “important steps on the way toward affirming the fundamental equality and dignity of every person and for peaceful coexistence among all peoples.” Cardinal urges courage in seeking Northern Ireland peace WASHINGTON (CNS) — Boston’s Cardinal Bernard F. Law called on Americans and on all parties in Northern Ireland’s turmoil to have the courage to keep working for peace. In his annual statement issued on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, Cardinal Law said the situation in Northern Ireland calls for following the Roman proverb, “Festina lente,” meaning “make haste with due deliberation.” Cardinal Law, chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on International Policy, acknowledged the progress that has been made toward implementing the 1998 Good Friday peace agreement but said three areas of special concern warrant attention: the role of the police, decommissioning of weapons, and demilitarization of the North. New museum opens at Knights of Columbus headquarters NEW HAVEN, Conn. (CNS) — After nearly four years of planning and building, the Knights of Columbus has opened a major museum at the organization’s New Haven headquarters. “Now that we’re into our second century of service, this was the time to preserve and share with the public what our heritage is,” said Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson, head of the 1.6-million member group, the world’s largest Catholic fraternal order. Museum director Larry So-

CNS photo by Ed Zelachoski, Catholic Accent

Polish Peroghi pack parish freezer Bernie Moore of St. Stanislaus Parish in Calumet, Pa., adds another dozen peroghi to a freezer packed full with the Polish dumplings. Last year, the church grossed about $10,000 selling more than 23,000 peroghi.

Cultures blend as Hispanics mix with U.S. society WASHINGTON(CNS) — As the growing number of Hispanics interact with their U.S. surroundings, the result is mutual contact ranging from intermarriages to blended ways of thinking and acting. Within the church, this contact has given rise to a Hispanic theology and has influenced ways of experiencing and understanding faith. Many Hispanic leaders use the term “acculturation” for the mutual influence of two cultures that come into close contact. Spanish-born Carmen Aquinaco notes that acculturation goes beyond learning each other’s mother tongue. “It means learning each other’s cultural language. To think in Spanish means to think from and within Hispanic culture,” said Aquinaco, a Catholic

Episcopal March 30, 2001 Volume 10 • Number 29

Publisher: Most Reverend William G. Curlin Editor: Joann S. Keane Associate Editor: Jimmy Rostar Staff Writer: Alesha M. Price Graphic Designer : Tim Faragher Advertising Representative: Cindi Feerick Secretary: Jane Glodowski 1123 South Church St., Charlotte, NC 28203 Mail: P.O. Box 37267, Charlotte, NC 28237 Phone: (704) 370-3333 FAX: (704) 370-3382 E-mail: catholicnews@charlottediocese.org The Catholic News & Herald, USPC 007-393, is published by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte, 1123 South Church St., Charlotte, NC 28203, 44 times a year, weekly except for Christmas week and Easter week and every two weeks during June, July and August for $15 per year for enrollees in parishes of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte and $18 per year for all other subscribers. Second-class postage paid at Charlotte NC and other cities. POSTMASTER: Send address corrections to The Catholic News & Herald, P.O. Box 37267, Charlotte, NC 28237.

March 30, 2001

The World in

c a l e n-

Bishop William G. Curlin will take part in the following events: March 30 - April 2 Pastoral visits to diocesan seminarians April 4 — 7 p.m. Lenten evening of reflection St. John Neumann, Charlotte April 6 — 7:30 a.m. Mass for Knights and Dames of Malta, St. Patrick, Charlotte 10:45 a.m. Mass Sacred Heart, Salisbury April 7 — 11 a.m. Belmont Abbey College Mass

winski said one of the principal goals of the Knights of Columbus Museum, which officially opened March 10, is to tell the story of the Knights and their effect on American and world history. Jewish leaders donate Holocaust menorah to Baltimore seminary BALTIMORE (CNS) — Hoping to strengthen the bonds of understanding and mutual respect between Jews and Catholics, prominent Jewish leaders have donated a menorah to St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore, commemorating millions of lives lost in the Holocaust. A replica of similar menorahs given two years ago to Pope John Paul II and the North American College in Rome, the Yom Hashoah Menorah was presented to Cardinal William H. Keeler of Baltimore, chancellor

Diocesan

plan -

13 - children’s Stations of the Cross at noon, Mass at 3 p.m. with veneration of the cross and a 7 p.m. presentation of the “Heart of the Cross”; April 14 10 a.m. blessing of the food and Easter Vigil at 8 p.m. and April 15 - 8:30 and 11 a.m. Masses. For details, call the church office at (828) 686-8833. WINSTON-SALEM — St. Leo the Great Church, 335 Springdale Ave., is hosting Dr. William Rabil as he leads a presentation on the Shroud of Turin tonight from 7-8:15 p.m. at the activity center annex. The talk concerns biblical, medical and scientific accounts of the shroud as a theoretic “fifth gospel.” For further information, call the church office at (336) 724-0561. 5 WINSTON-SALEM — The Healing Companions, a grief support group for the bereaved, is meeting tonight and April 19 in Conference Room A at 7:30 p.m. at St. Leo the Great Church,

of St. Mary’s, during a March 5 ceremony at the seminary. Gunther Lawrence, executive director of the New York-based Interreligious Information Center, developed the idea for the project and worked with Israeli sculptor Aharon Bezalel of Jerusalem to design the artwork. Pope blesses Italian expedition to North Pole VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope John Paul II blessed members of an Italian expedition that plans to make history by celebrating Mass and erecting a cross at the North Pole on Easter. Meeting with the expedition team March 20 and blessing the cross they planned to carry, the pope said he prayed “that this mission, so arduous and laden with significance, will be crowned with complete success.” The expedition had a “clear missionary value,” the pope said. “Planting the ‘wood of the cross’ and renewing the eucharistic sacrifice at the ‘ends of the earth,’ you intend to recall that humanity finds its authentic dimension only when it is able to fix its gaze on Christ and totally trust in him,” he said. Thousands in China line up for sacrament of reconciliation HONG KONG (CNS) — The sacrament of reconciliation remains popular among Chinese Catholics, particularly in rural areas where hundreds or even thousands line up for confessions on major church feasts. In the past, many Catholics insisted on receiving absolution before receiving Communion, and their insistence often delayed ordinary liturgies as priests and bishops had to sit for hours hearing confessions, reported UCA News, an Asian church news agency based in Thailand. A parish priest in China told UCA News one Christmas Eve that he had no idea when he would begin the midnight Mass, because it would commence only after all confessions were heard. Today, though, lay people in rural areas can more readily distinguish those sins serious enough to require confession, Father Song Zunsheng of Urumqi Diocese, northwestern China, told UCA News.

335 Springdale Ave. Call the church office at (336) 724-0561 for details. 8 CHARLOTTE — The Raiders Association from Our Lady of Assumption School is hosting a “Family Day of Golf ” today at noon at the Larkhaven Golf Club. The day includes celebrity guest host Ethan Horton, snacks, lunch, drinks and an afternoon of golfing for kids of all ages. A professional golf clinic, clubs and prizes are being provided for the young participants, and the adults can compete to win prizes. For further information, call Diana Kennedy at (704) 548-0568. CHARLOTTE — Churches in the Charlotte area are hosting ultreyas followed by a school of leaders on the following dates and times: St. Vincent de Paul Church, 6828 Old Reid Rd., from 7-8 p.m. tonight for adults only with shared snacks; St. Thomas Aquinas Church, 1400 Suther Rd., from 1-2:30 p.m. on April 12 with childcare and a family potluck and St. Matthew Church, 8015 Ballantyne Pkwy., from


March 30, 2001

Emphasis on lay ministry aiding vocations, says cardinal WASHINGTON (CNS) — The church’s emphasis on lay ministry is not diluting vocations to ordained and consecrated life, said Cardinal Roger M. Mahony of Los Angeles. “Just the opposite is taking place. As more and more lay people become involved in ministry, they are a base for vocations to the priesthood and religious life,” he said in off-the-cuff remarks during a speech at The Catholic University of America in Washington. The largest group of seminarians studying for his archdiocese come from lay ministry, he added. Cardinal Mahony spoke March 20 on “Charting a Course for Participation in Mission.” Sisters extend ‘gift of shelter’ to female inmates in California LOS ANGELES (CNS) — For inmates at the California Institution for Women in Corona, receiving their daily meals used to mean enduring long waits in outdoor lines, standing under stormy skies or beneath the blazing sun. Today, these women are protected from harsh weather thanks to an awning donated by the Leadership Conference of Women Religious. The new awning was formally presented during a March 14 blessing and ribbon-cutting ceremony in the prison’s main yard. Invited guests included Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala of Los Angeles, Sister Suzanne Jabro, a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet, who is director of the archdiocesan Office of Detention Ministry, and several inmates. President, cardinals officially open pope’s cultural center WASHINGTON (CNS) — Seven cardinals and President Bush presided over the March 22 ceremony and ribbon-cutting that marked the grand opening of the Pope John Paul II Cultural Center in Washington. Detroit Cardinal Adam J. Maida, president of the center dedicated to the Catholic faith, told the audience of about 1,200 guests in a huge tent on the grounds of the center that the pope insisted it be located in Washington instead of any of several other suggested sites, including Warsaw or Krakow in Poland. “He sees Washington, D.C., as the crossroads of the world,” Cardinal Maida said. “The center’s location here will allow it to impact and shape the many events that transpire here.” Churches fear helicopters used feelings. For further details about this session and the monthly bereavement group meetings, call B.J. Dengler at the church at (704) 364-5431. GREENSBORO — The Greensboro Council of Catholic Women’s annual mini-Lenten retreat at St. Paul the Apostle Church, 2715 Horse Pen Creek Rd., concludes this morning at the 10 a.m. Mass. The ladies ask that attendants bring hors d’oeuvres to share today. Call Janet Law at (336) 288-6022 for information. SWANNANOA — At St. Mary Margaret Church, 102 Andrew Place, Stations of the Cross are being held during Lent today and every Wednesday after noon Mass and Fridays at 7 p.m., and a special Lenten Mass and simple meal is being held also on Wednesdays at 6 p.m. During Holy Week, the schedule is as follows: April 8 - Palms given out at all Masses; April 10 - 6 p.m. Seder meal with covered dishes; April 12 - 7 p.m. Mass and washing of the feet followed by Eucharistic adoration from 8 p.m. until midnight; April

The Catholic News & Herald 3

The World in

CNS photo from Reuters

Statue of Pope moved in Montevideo, Uruguay A 13-foot-tall bronze statue of Pope John Paul II is moved to a new church in Montevideo, Uruguay, March 24. The one-ton sculpture was situated at a church built on a spot were the pontiff celebrated Mass during his 1988 visit to the country. by Colombian military OTTAWA (CNS) — Churches in Canada fear surplus Canadian helicopters now in the hands of Colombia’s military may be used to commit human rights violations. “The Canadian churches have documented how helicopters have been used in the past in operations that have targeted the civilian population,” said Archbishop Roger Ebach-

er of Gatineau-Hull. Archbishop Ebacher represented the Inter-Church Committee on Human Rights in Latin America at a news conference on Parliament Hill March 20. He and representatives of Amnesty International Canada, the Canadian Labor Congress and the ecumenical disarmament coalition Project Ploughshares claimed that “gaping loopholes” in Canada’s export

April 1 GUILFORD COUNTY — The Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians Guilford County Division 1 is having a meeting today and every first Sunday from 3-5 p.m. at the Showfety Activity Center at St. Benedict Church, 109 West Smith St. in Greensboro. For further information, call Alice Schmidt at (336) 288-0983. 2 CHARLOTTE — Churches in the Charlotte area are having their regularly scheduled cancer support group meetings for survivors, family and friends on the following days: St. Gabriel Church, 3016 Providence Rd., tonight at 7 p.m. in the ministry center library and St. Matthew Church, 8015 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy., on April 3 at 7 p.m. in the office building conference room. For more information, call: St. Matthew - Marilyn Borrelli at (704) 542-2283 and St. Gabriel - Eileen Cordell at (704) 352-5047, Ext. 217. For further information, call Bob Poffenbarger Sr., coordinator, at (704)

553-7000. CHARLOTTE — Christians in Career Transition is a ministry of St. Matthew Church, 8015 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy., devoted to helping people in career crises. The meeting takes place tonight and April 16 from 7-9 p.m. in the office area of the parish center’s conference room. For more information, call Rev. Mr. Jim Hamrlik at (704) 542-6459. CLEMMONS — Holy Family Church, 4820 Kinnamon Rd., is celebrating a charismatic Mass tonight at 7:30 p.m. with Father Frank O’Rourke. The sacrament of reconciliation is being given at 7 p.m., and the laying on of hands is taking place after Mass. The next Mass takes place on May 7. For more information, call the church office at (336) 778-0600 or Jim Passero at (336) 998-7503. 3 GREENSBORO — The Adult Education Program at Our Lady of Grace Church, 2205 W. Market St., concludes tonight from 7-8 p.m. in the activity center. Rev. Mr. Paul Teich

controls had permitted the surplus military helicopters to end up in the hands of Colombia’s “repressive” military. Chilean bishop provides proof of executions under Pinochet SANTIAGO, Chile (CNS) — Retired Bishop Carlos Gonzalez Cruchaga of Talca has provided evidence of 20 unlawful executions of people arrested at La Moneda Palace the day Gen. Augusto Pinochet ousted Socialist President Salvador Allende. Bishop Gonzalez said he received “consistent information” explaining that on Sept. 11, 1973, 35 people were arrested at La Moneda Palace and 20 of them were executed two days later. In an eight-point document containing information provided by a former military officer who remained anonymous, Bishop Gonzalez said that the 35 Allende collaborators were arrested and sent to the “Tacna” Army regiment. After two days, 20 of them — regarded as “communists” — were sent to the military camp Peldehue outside Santiago and executed. Trial begins in 1998 murder of Guatemalan bishop GUATEMALA CITY (CNS) — Amid tight security, a panel of judges began the trial of five people accused of the 1998 murder of Auxiliary Bishop Juan Gerardi Conedera of Guatemala City. One of the accused, Father Mario Orantes, a diocesan priest who shared the bishop’s house and is alleged to have assisted the murderers, sat impassively in the packed courtroom March 23. He arrived in court in a wheelchair, dressed in a bathrobe and felt slippers. He has been confined to a city hospital since his arrest more than a year ago. Three others — retired Col. Disrael Lima Estrada, 58, a former head of military intelligence; his son, Capt. Byron Lima Oliva, 30; and former presidential guard Jose Obdulio Villanueva — sat motionless as the judge read out the charges against them of “extrajudicial killing.” At a nearby table sat the late bishop’s housekeeper, Margarita Lopez, accused of conspiracy in the murder.

is presenting “Growing in Prayer” which focuses on the necessity of sincere and heartfelt prayer during the season of Lent, and in doing so, how one can prepare for Holy Week. For further details, call the Church at (336) 274-0415. 4 CHARLOTTE — The 50+ Club of St. John Neumann Church, 8451 Idlewild Rd., is having a meeting this morning at 11 a.m. with a program from Kids of the Kingdom and lunch in the parish center. Donations are being accepted during the meeting. For more information, call Louise Brewer at (704) 366-8357 or Gloria Silipigni at (704) 821-1343. CHARLOTTE — St. Gabriel Church, 3016 Providence Rd., is hosting a bereavement education session entitled “Grief: Dealing with Loss in the Years that Follow.” All are invited to come and explore how feelings of grief and loss continue sometimes long after the first year and how one can deal with those


4 The Catholic News & Herald

Around the Di-

March 30, 2001

Hickory Catholics, Lutherans gather for

By ELLEN NEERINCX SIGMON Correspondent HICKORY — As part of her performance at St. Aloysius Catholic Church on Wednesday evening, March 21, actress Olivia Woodford of Asheville played the part of a young girl who sneaks up the stairs of her house during the Last Supper. She finds herself unable to move as she peeks through the door and looks straight into the eyes of Jesus. “He doesn’t smile at me, because that would give me away,” she says, “but I think I see him smile with his eyes.” This portrayal was one of six women who recount the events of Jesus’ death and resurrection. Woodford performed her drama, entitled “The Heart of the Cross,” as part of a joint Wednesday evening Lenten worship series between member churches of the Lutheran/Roman Catholic Covenant Committee. This service was the third of five Wednesdays, and was attended by members of all four churches in the covenant. The other members of the covenant are Holy Trinity, Mt. Olive and St. Andrew’s Lutheran churches. Members from all of the churches were invited to a pasta dinner hosted by St. Aloysius before the service. The other four weeks, the pastors of each church are taking turns delivering the homily at each other’s churches. Each pastor chose a person or persons in history to speak about during the other four Wednesdays, and wrote a homily that talked about the crosses those persons bore during their lives. Woodford held the 300 people attending this service as spellbound as the young girl felt while looking into the eyes of Jesus. Members of the

audience laughed and cried during her portrayals, and gave her a standing ovation when she finished. Her second monologue was that of a woman named Veronica who saw Jesus carrying his cross and felt compelled to step forward to wipe his face. Veronica says that she doesn’t usually attend the crucifixions, “but my wanting to see him is greater than any of my doubts.” Woodford then became Mary Magdalene, watching Jesus die on the cross and remembering how he had saved her from herself when he forgave her sins and told her to go and sin no more. “He had healed my heart,” she said, “and I could love again.” Then she became Mary, the mother of Jesus, cleaning him and preparing him for burial. “I knew you never belonged to me, Jesus, and I learned to let you go at each phase of your life,” she said. Later she looked down at him and said, “Such a beautiful temple destroyed.” Then came Mary, sister of Martha and Lazarus, going to his tomb and finding angels there. “How many times has he said to me, ‘I will be with you always’?” she said. “I should have listened.” Then she rushes to tell the disciples. “I can feel the grace of God flowing through me as I run.” Then, as she encounters disbelief when she tells them what has happened, “They don’t believe me,” she says. “Their faith is as small as mine has been.” Last came Martha, describing Pentecost and her other encounters with Jesus. First she expresses exasperation at Jesus’ response to her when she asks him to send Mary into the kitchen to help her. After all, she says, “somebody has to do the providing.” She is pleased when Jesus later asks her to keep doing what she has

Photo by Ellen Neerincx Sigmon

St. Aloysius Church parishioner Karen Vollinger chats with the Rev. William Milholland, interim pastor at Mt. Olive Lutheran Church in Hickory. Vollinger is a former longtime member of the Lutheran Catholic Covenant Committee. been doing — providing meals and lodging for his followers — instead of traveling with his disciples. “I discovered that we each have a place in this world,” she says. In remarks at the beginning of the service, Pastor Robert Shoffner of Holy Trinity said that the gathering reminded him of another time the four congregations had gathered at St. Aloysius. “We filled this worship area

when we gathered together to sign our covenant,” he said. The signing took place on May 29, 1994, although the covenant was agreed upon in 1991. The committee is planning another gathering for the congregations in May to commemorate the 10th anniversary.


March 30, 2001

Around the Di-

Romero’s legacy centered on ‘ violence of love,’ By JIMMY ROSTAR Associate Editor GREENSBORO — During his three years as archbishop of San Salvador, Archbishop Oscar Romero repeated a progressively more urgent plea that justice would prevail over inequality and that the will of God would prevail over the elitism of the powerful, said a professor of history in Greensboro. Dr. Michael Roberto, an instructor of world history at North Carolina A & T State University, addressed an audience at the Franciscan Center March 15 on the teachings of Archbishop Romero as a theological invitation to social justice in a country ravaged by human rights violations and capitalistic idolatry. Archbishop Romero was shot while celebrating Mass on March 24, 1980, leaving behind a role as one of El Salvador’s most outspoken critics of human rights abuses. His legacy continues to have insightful effects in the country. Quoting from “The Violence of Love,” a series of Archbishop Romero’s homilies compiled and translated by Jesuit Father James Brockman, Roberto took his audience through three years of the archbish-

op’s speaking in a loud voice for the poor, the oppressed and the people of faith who comprised the majority in the country yet who were victimized the most harshly. “In times of global economic crisis, the most profound economic setback and chaos are in third-world countries, and this was certainly the same in El Salvador,” said Roberto of the year 1977, the beginning of a period of worldwide economic destabilization and the year in which Romero was appointed as archbishop of San Salvador. Roberto explained the social, economic and political situation in El Salvador during Archbishop Romero’s three years as a church leader: a land with extreme polarization of wealth and political power; a land where 14 families controlled 60 percent of the nation’s property; a land where 65 percent of the peasantry was landless; a land where half-hearted reform attempts were squashed by those 14 families and their military allies; and a land where it became commonplace to see the slogan “Be a patriot and kill a priest” slapped on walls of towns, pueblos and cities nationwide. Roberto said Archbishop Romero’s belief in salvation history — the facts and the record of God’s relationships with

people — guided the archbishop in much of his ministry. That belief, he said, led the archbishop to “become a great Christian and a great realist at the same time — a man who recognized that Christ’s redemptive power could not be taken out of the historical process, and anyone who tried to do that was not living the Gospel.” In his early homilies as archbishop, Roberto said, Archbishop Romero cautiously challenged all people to share in the priestly ministry of bringing peace and love to the world. As time progressed, however, Roberto pointed out that the archbishop became growingly and publicly more concerned with the structures in place that were contrary to God’s Word. Roberto shared this excerpt from a December 1977 homily: “What starts conflicts and persecutions, what marks the genuine church, is the word that, burning like the word of the prophets, proclaims and accuses: proclaims to the people God’s wonders to be believed and venerated, and accuses of sin those who oppose God’s reign, so that they may tear that sin out of their hearts, out of their societies, out of their laws — out of the structures that oppress, that imprison, that violate the rights of God and of humanity.” Roberto said this period marked

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a more radical line of thought from the archbishop, a line marking the transcending of his role as a moderate defender of the status quo and pushing toward his becoming an outspoken critic of the country’s struggles. Roberto said the most radical phase of Archbishop Romero’s ministry began toward the end of 1978, when he began referring to the “atheism of capitalism” that occurs when people replace God with material possessions, leading to a deterioration in values, integrity and honesty. Archbishop Romero was again making a strong argument for salvation history, Roberto said, returning to the Jesus’ example of his life. “By returning to the idea of salvation history, with Jesus showing us how to live because of the way Jesus lived himself, Romero therefore put Jesus in the context of the struggle in El Salvador,” he said. Roberto said by April 1979, in the spring before the archbishop’s own murder, the cleric’s homilies became more challenging than ever on the theme of righteous, nonviolent conflict; the church’s standing on the side of those who are oppressed; and the invoking of God’s inspiration in the face of injustice. Though the archbishop publicly

See LEGACY, page 15

Photo by Jimmy Rostar

Minhthu Ngo Lynagh, Diane Weber and Bridget Brown Johnson chat with Dr. Michael Roberto following his March 15 presentation at the Franciscan Center.


6 The Catholic News & Herald Sister Barbara Reid wins Sophia Award for excellence WASHINGTON (CNS) — Dominican Sister Barbara Reid, professor of New Testament at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago since 1988, is the 2001 winner of the Sophia Award for theological excellence in service to ministry. The award is presented annually by faculty of the Washington Theological Union “to honor a rising theologian who has made a significant contribution to ministry, through writings and insights,” said Franciscan Father Daniel McLellan, president of the union. He added that the award is named for the union’s Chapel of Holy Wisdom, dedicated in 1996. “Hence the name of the award — Sophia for wisdom,” he said. Nigerian woman who met pope in jubilee year dies of AIDS ROME (CNS) — A young Nigerian woman who had an emotional jubilee-year meeting with Pope John Paul II after being forced into prostitution in Italy has died of AIDS. The woman, called “Erica” by the Italian priest who helped free her from the prostitution racket, died March 20 in a Naples hospital at the age of 26. Last May, she was with a pilgrimage of 39 former prostitutes assisted by the Pope John XXIII Community Association. At the end of the papal audience, accompanied by the association’s founder, Father Oreste Benzi, she knelt before the pope, embraced him and recited a tearful prayer. “Help women like me get off the streets. ... We are slaves looking for our freedom,” she told the pope. U.S. priest named to Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope John Paul II has named U.S. Msgr. Frank J. Dewane undersecretary of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, the Vatican announced March 22. Msgr. Dewane has served in Vatican delegations to the United Nations and to several major U.N. conferences. Since 1995, he has been an official of the Pontifical Council “Cor Unum,” the Vatican’s charity-promoting and coordinating office. At the justice and peace council, Msgr. Dewane will deal with a wide range of economic and social issues. In recent years, the council has studied such questions as foreign debt, racism, weapons sales and the role of children in war. Bishop Lori installed as new bishop of Bridgeport, Conn. BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (CNS) — Calling on the faithful of the Diocese of

March 30, 2001

People in the

CNS photo by Edgar Romero

Salvadorans mark anniversary of Romero’s death Enilda Amaya joins a procession marking the 21st anniversary of the death of Archbishop Oscar Romero March 24 in San Salvador. Amaya holds a portrait of the slain archbishop and of her son, a seminarian who was also slain during El Salvador’s civil war.

Bridgeport to model their lives on the example of St. Joseph, former Washington Auxiliary Bishop William E. Lori was installed March 19, the feast of St. Joseph, as the diocese’s fourth bishop. “With the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph, we are called to open our hearts to the Father’s mysterious plan of salvation,” Bishop Lori said. “You and I are invited to know Christ, who in showing us the depth of the Father’s love also reveals the dignity and worth of every person.” In his homily, Bishop Lori pledged

to help lead the diocese into the new millennium, especially following St. Joseph’s example and the vision of Pope John Paul II. Boggs returns to her beloved New Orleans after stint in Rome NEW ORLEANS (CNS) — Corinne “Lindy” Boggs is back home doing what she loves best — French Quarter aerobics. Boggs turned 85 earlier this month and is shaking off the lingering effects of the “Roman flu,” but New Orleans’ most famous Catholic still can walk circles around those half her age. After spending three memorable years as U.S. ambassador to the Holy See — an appointment that ended March 1 — Boggs hopped on a plane, stopped in London to visit her eighth great-grandchild (her daughter Cokie Roberts’ first grandchild), and then finally arrived home for good on March 3. Since then the only problem she’s encountered — other than the ongoing renovation of her French Quarter home that sustained extensive water damage when a third-floor pipe burst last August — is that everywhere she walks, people want to stop and talk. Father of murder victim speaks out against executions ST. MARY-OF-THE-WOODS, Ind. (CNS) — As one victim’s father puts it, the scheduled execution of Timothy McVeigh May 16 at the U.S. Penitentiary in Terre Haute “won’t bring Julie Marie Welch back or any of the 167 others” killed in the Oklahoma City bombing. “When we take Tim McVeigh out of his cage to kill him, we will end up with a staged political event,” said Julie’s father, Bud Welch, during two speeches March 15 for the Sisters of Providence of St. Mary-of-the-Woods and students at St. Mary-of-the-Woods College. “It will do nothing more or less for society, and it certainly won’t bring me peace,” he said. Welch spoke about his spiritual journey since his daughter was killed


March 30, 2001

From the

The Catholic News & Herald 7

Belmont Abbey welcomes two monks into

By Alesha M. Price Staff Writer BELMONT — It was a holy and interesting coincidence. Two men professed their first monastic vows and officially entered into the Benedictine community at Belmont Abbey on March 21, the day of St. Benedict’s death. After a year and a day of the novitiate, Brother Emmanuel Slobodzian and Brother Boniface Hamilton became monks, pledging to seek God through monasticism. Priests, family, friends and members of the student body of Belmont Abbey College were present to witness the event at Belmont Abbey Basilica. “This is a happy occasion for us as others come to embrace this way of life,” said Abbot Placid Solari, OSB, spiritual and administrative leader of Belmont Abbey and chancellor of Belmont Abbey College. “One of the things on everyone’s mind is vocations, and to have two men (enter the monastery) is a wonderful occurrence, especially since one is an alumnus.” The monks The alumnus, Brother Boniface, graduated from Belmont Abbey College last year with a bachelor’s degree in history, culminating the 25-year-old’s life in the secular world. Born in Kentucky and raised in Clemmons, Brother Boniface, formerly Matthew Allen Hamilton, says that it was his mother’s influence that ultimately led

him to his decision to enter the monastery. “The moment I was born, she knew I would be a priest. She always implied that but never forced it on me and allowed me to find my own place in the world. By attending a private, Catholic institution, Mother always knew this was some way of God persuading me to become a Benedictine.” He did not hear the call to monasticism until his senior year of college while walking to class. With the monastery standing in the distance, he felt compelled to talk to the vocation director. He visited the monastery and realized that life was leading him in this direction. “I felt comfortable with the brothers and liked the structure and discipline of the monastery. I didn’t need to choose anything else because I felt God had chosen this for me by calling me to the college, sending me to the vocation director, etc. I am no longer Matthew Allen Hamilton doing my own will; I am Brother Boniface trying to do God’s will as best I can.” Brother Emmanuel, 58, came to Belmont by way of the subway. Before coming to live in the monastery, his last job was a subway station agent with the New York City Transit Authority. At the age of 21, he joined the New York Police Department in Brooklyn and later quit to attend City College of New York. After receiving a degree in psychology, he worked in the accounting department of a company specializing in ship-inspecting engineering and also worked as a bookkeeper. During this time, Brother Emmanuel, known as Harry Joseph Slobodzian Jr., was married and di-

Photo by Alesha M. Price

Pictured from left to right, Brother Boniface Hamilton, Abbot Placid Solari, OSB and Brother Emmanuel Slobodzian stand in front of Belmont Abbey Basilica on March 21. on the life of St. Boniface and because the vorced and made it through that time with saint grew up near the area in Germany the help of friends and family. of his ancestors. The meaning of the name Centering prayer, also known as conEmmanuel compelled Brother Emmanuel templative prayer, and a Trappist monk remake it his first choice. It means “God is treat are what led Brother Emmanuel to the with us.” life of a monastic. “It is a very quiet prayer, “For me, I have become a new person and in time, you notice there is a presence. in Jesus by living the life in the monastery, You begin paying attention to God when and the name change represents that,” said your mind is quiet and free. After being Brother Boniface. introduced to this type of prayer, a nun sugThe novitiate, which lasts for a year gested I write to seminaries and asked if I and a day, is a time for the novices to further would be open to visiting some. I came to explore their decision to enter the monasBelmont Abbey” tery and to prepare for their first profession After living at the Abbey as a postuof monastic vows after this period. After lant, Brother Emmanuel felt an even stronprofession, the men become juniors, during ger call to monastic life. “I found that they which time they must petition the abbot prayed this type of contemplative prayer, should they wish to leave the monastery. and it was more of a thing where God got During the three-year junioriate, the men through to me, and I realized that through attend classes and intensely study the Rule my whole life, God had been doing things of St. Benedict received during the profesfor me. I wanted to live for him as he had sion ceremony; they may also be permitted been living for me.” to attend the seminary. At the end of three years, the decision The monastery to take solemn vows commits them for life The men enter the monastery as posto the monastic community. tulants usually for period of at least three months. During this time, they may leave The “Rule” at any time if they feel that this way of life Written in the sixth century by St. is not for them. They are introduced to moBenedict, the “Rule of Benedict” consists of nasticism through prayer, Mass, and work a prologue and 73 chapters focusing on the with the monks to learn more about their spiritual, personal and social lives of monks. vocation and daily life in the monastery. It covers such subjects as the role of prayer After this period, they become novices in one’s life to eating habits to virtuous zeal and are given religious names chosen by and proscribes a way of living through them and approved by the abbot. The humble, contemplative and obedient faith men are also clothed in the black Benedicand service. tine habits by receiving the scapular, a long piece of clothing worn over the shoulders See ABBEY, page 8 and neck, and the hood. Brother Boniface chose his name based


8 The Catholic News & Herald

WOMEN, from page 1 “I talked about how God shows his love through our families and friends through their words and actions and how we reflect that love,” said Martin, who spoke last year and brought the only male in attendance, her 10-week old son, Patrick. “God intended us to be in relationships with one another, and this day is important because we work so hard as moms and as women. We need to realize that we do make an impact, and we have to get together to talk and relate to one another and show appreciation.” Bartlett shared the inspiring story of her daughter who, through the power of faith, worked her way back from a painful cycle of substance abuse and prison to speaking to youth groups about her journey and teaching faith formation. “I felt the Holy Spirit say that I had to talk about my daughter and show the women that there is hope only in God. Kids are very vulnerable today, and you cannot let go of them. You have to be ready to make tough decisions in order not to lose them,” said Bartlett, the parish music director, who shared her gift of singing and songwriting with the group. “The women’s testimonies were a wonderful part of the day because I heard other women talk about what I have experienced and what I felt, and I realized I am not alone,” said Clo-

Around the Diorthia Holiday, a parishioner from St. Benedict Church in Greensboro. “The Catholic Church traditionally doesn’t have women’s day programs, so whenever I hear of one, I attend because it is a blessing. It is uplifting and healing for Catholic women to get together.” A popular TV icon provided the material for Sister Jeanne Marie’s talk, “Bless this Mess: Living with the Reality of Our Lives.” She told the women to celebrate their womanhood, be proud of who they are and not to base their lives on what she called the “Martha Stewart Syndrome.” “At what stage or age in our lives do we reach the spiritual maturity to say ‘this is who I am, and it is good, not perfect, but good?’ Popular icons or the ‘Martha Stewart Syndrome’ have prevented us from looking at the reality of our lives,” said Sister Jeanne Marie. “We are Christian women, women of wealth and dignity who minister to others continuously, but our problem may be that we don’t see what we do as ministry instead of chore. What we have to do is maybe change our attitudes. “Recognize and own your gifts. Ask God to bless your own unique mess, embrace it and love it while you have it. Ask the Lord to bless you because you are so special and unique.” The first woman’s day was held last year on the feast of the Annunciation of the Lord and day of the Jubilee of Women in celebration of the Jubilee Year. Contact Staff Writer Alesha M. Price by calling (704) 370-3354 or email amprice@charlottediocese.org.

ABBEY, from page 7 “It has been a living document since the sixth century and was distilled from previous documents as a way of life that is a rule for beginners,” explained Abbot Placid. “It serves as a way of living Christian life for the average person and allows discretion by the abbot to adapt outward expression. It is the fundamental monastic rule in Western Europe and outlines a way of life that any person of good will can live, that over time, will change a person through fidelity to prayer and charity in the community.” The ceremony The two novices, Brother Emmanuel and Brother Boniface were presented to the abbot and indicated that they wished to make vows during the Mass and profession on March 21, said Abbot Placid. During the homily, Abbot Placid told the men that they must trust in God’s divine plan for their lives and that, even through times of difficulty, the light of Christ burns bright and strong in them. “Perhaps your generosity, your zeal, in making this gift of your lives today, can rekindle some of that fire in all of us. And yet, we, the monks of Belmont Abbey, have shown you as well how the Lord sustains us especially in our weakness. These men have been faithful to those vows made many years ago, persevering in the monastery until death, sharing in the sufferings of Christ so as to share in his glory. It is gradual thing. “The things which you propose to sacrifice — home, family, property — you will receive back in new ways, ways in which you will have them forever,” said the abbot. Remember that to do this, you will have to trust and have faith again and again in the faithfulness of God, even when you do

March 30, 2001

not understand it.” The men signed a document on the altar stating that they vow for three years to live the life of a monastic — obedience, stability in monasticism and conversion of one’s way of life, a vow which includes the vows of chastity and poverty. The vow of stability means one is bound to the Benedictine community. They signed three times according to the “Rule.” They received a copy of the “Rule” and were then welcomed into the monastic community by their brother monks. Brother Emmanuel and Brother Boniface, now Benedictine monks of Belmont Abbey, will continue living and working in the monastery and are attending classes. Brother Boniface hopes to be able to move on to seminary, as does Brother Emmanuel, but for now, both are happy in their decisions. “I have been happy since I arrived here,” said Brother Emmanuel. “I want people to know that this place is not just for monks; it is for the people.” Contact Staff Writer Alesha M. Price by calling (704) 370-3354 or email amprice@charlottediocese.org.


March 30, 2001

By JIMMY ROSTAR Associate Editor ARDEN — The most effective way of passing the faith on to children is through sharing symbols, rituals and stories in various levels of faith communities, a priest of the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C., told parents and catechists involved in faith formation in the Diocese of Charlotte’s western region. Father Robert Duggan, a pastor, author and nationally recognized initiation expert, presented “Teaching Kids the Basics of Liturgy” on March 24 at St. Barnabas Church in Arden. Organized and sponsored by the Asheville Vicariate Faith Formation Leadership Team, the program gathered parents and catechists from the Asheville and Smoky Mountain vicariates to share how faith formation, church experiences and children are all essential elements in passing the faith on to future generations. “Faith is a developmental reality,” said Father Duggan. “It is constantly growing and evolving. Faith is all about relationship, ultimately — the relationship that we have with a God who loves us unconditionally in Jesus Christ, and has chosen to be present to us in a special way in a community of believers that we call the church.” For children especially, that experience of church community is an important and formative one, Father Duggan said. He pointed out the various levels of church in the lives of the faithful — the “domestic church,” or the family; the small faith community; the parish; the diocese; and the worldwide church — and said the church community is constantly competing with other communities in society, such as the community of consumer-

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Around the Dio-

Faith experience shared with children through rituals, in community, priest

ism, for the attention and passions of children. “The communities in which we live are decisive in forming our faith vision, our values, our specific beliefs, our behaviors, and so forth,” he said. “We are creatures of our communities.” For parents, catechists and pas-

Photo by Jimmy Rostar

tors, the challenge is to discover real, engaging ways of instilling the values of the faith community in children. “The General Director for Catechesis,” a document issued in Rome in 1997 to guide efforts in passing on the faith, teaches that the life of the Christian community itself is the primary form of catechesis, Father Duggan said. He added that in many cases people think of formal structures such as CCD programs as the key means of passing on and absorbing faith, but in reality, most children in the United States receive only about two-dozen hours a year of such education. “How your Christian community lives is how it happens,” he said. The domestic church is “the fundamental community of faith that shapes our children” he said, adding that those larger realities of church all

shape faith. But the most effective and richest experience of sharing faith is the liturgy itself, he said. “The liturgy is where we are best as church, and in the liturgy there is a dynamic operative which in a privileged way transmits the faith,” he said. “Liturgy provides the most holistic learning experience that our church offers, because it is rich in context with stories and prayers and so forth, but it is also rich in the lavish use of symbol that we offer.” Father Duggan said fostering faith experiences for children have long-lasting and profound effects on the shaping of their Christianity. By sharing stories and surrounding children in the church’s use of rituals and symbols, parents, catechists and pastors pass on truths of faith that are absorbed at an early age. Those truths, Father Duggan said, make the important leap into an adult’s understanding and articulation of the faith later in life. Quoting from Dominican Father Paul Philibert, a theologian, Father Duggan said the ritual experience landscapes the religious imagination of the child. “We get children with their religious imagination blank, and we landscape it,” Father Duggan said. “We put the images of God that will last a lifetime.” “In the early years of life,” he said, “the basic categories are being implanted in the psyche of heaven, hell, good, evil, God, death, life. That’s being given to children long before they are ready for formal education. They get it by being part of a community that is rich in symbol and ritual.” Rituals such as the Sign of the Cross — traced on the forehead of infants at their baptisms, for example — are integral ways adults can relate to even the youngest children the profound beliefs of the Christian community, he said. “It’s from the very beginning,” he said, “that we are supposed to use ways of transmitting the


1 0 The Catholic News & Herald Book Review

Book takes readers on journey of France Reviewed by JULIE ASHER Catholic News Service I was drawn to Anne McPherson’s book by the title and the charming illustration on the cover because I am interested in France and things French — its history, language, culture, society and saints. So I was delighted to read that McPher-

WALKING TO THE SAINTS: A LITTLE PILGRIMAGE IN FRANCE, by Anne McPherson. Paulist Press (Mahwah, N.J., 2000). 207 pp., $18.95.

son, an Anglican from Canada, shares that fascination. Since she was 5 years old, she knew France “to be an enchanted country, a place of dreams,” she writes. I thought “Walking to the Saints” would be a colorful little armchair tour of historical pilgrimage sites worth noting for a future trip perhaps, but it is far more than some light, airy tourism book that casts such places only in the best light. It’s about a spiritual journey McPherson says she has been on for years, starting at home in Canada. Her stops in France along what is the ancient route to the major pilgrimage destination of Santiago de Compostela, Spain, sparked deeper thinking for McPherson on the role of women in the church, feminism and theology, what the saints’ lives say to contemporary believers and how the church has changed — or not changed — in 2,000 years. An added treat are the delicate drawings by Canadian artist Tony Urquhart that open each chapter. They feature details from pilgrimage sites: the capital of an ancient column, the nave of a church, an outside wall of a shrine. The sepia tones of the illustrations add to their charm; the brownish hue extends to the type as well. McPherson is a free-lance writer and art curator from St. Catharines, Ontario. She and her husband of more than 40 years, Bob, made their first trip

March 30, 2001

Read-

to France 35 years ago and have traveled through most of the country. They’ve spent enough time there to make them “want more and more of it,” she says. For several years now they have owned a house they call “Colomba” in Campagnac in southern France. The story of the house opens and closes the book. It’s the starting point for her pilgrimage to Vezelay, Tours, Poitiers, Aulnay and F laran, Saint-Jean d’Angely and Moissac, Toulouse, Saint-Bernard-de-Comminges, Arles and Saint-Gilles and Conques. She, of course, talks about the saints associated with these places, including Mary of Magdala, Martin, Joan of Arc, Ragegonde, Bernard of Clairvaux, Sernin, Trophime, Gilles and Foy. McPherson also includes other historical figures, like Eleanor of Aquitaine, and pre-Christian figures, like Minerva. She describes the feel of the towns and the kinds of people strolling through the streets. She draws in the history of each place, talks about issues in the church then and now, and reflects on what the times might have been like when a particular saint walked the earth, especially how women fared then. If she doesn’t like a place, she’s honest, as in her assessment of Tours. It flourished during the Renaissance, she writes, but today is “a quintessential nonentity.” On the other hand, Poitiers is “a four-star pilgrimage city” she finds captivating. If you want more details about each pilgrimage site, how to get there, what the accommodations are, etc., no doubt a number of books address that subject matter. McPherson’s book is not meant to be that. Some readers won’t get anything out of her musings, others won’t agree with her theological views, but as she writes, “My religious opinions have never followed the beaten track.” I think following her along as she shares her love for France and what she finds as she walks to the saints is worth the trip.

Word to Life

April 1, Fifth Sunday of Lent Cycle B Readings: 1) Isaiah 43:16-21 Psalm 121:1-6 2) Philippians 3:8-14 3) Gospel: John 8:1-11

By BOZENA CLOUTIER Catholic News Service This past fall I traveled to Poland, the country where I was born and spent my earliest childhood. It had been 61 years since I left, fleeing with my family at the outbreak of World War II. My visit was made at short notice, which was just as well because in previous years when possibilities of returning had come up I got cold feet and did not go. Deep down I feared that the return would engulf me in great sadness at all that had been lost and that the memories I treasured from my childhood would somehow be tarnished by present reality. But before any of those fears could again paralyze me, I found myself at Warsaw’s airport meeting my brother who had flown in from London. There is only one way I can describe the nine days that followed. They were wondrous. Instead of sadness and regret, I was filled with joy and gratitude at the experiences, adventures, surprises and connections I encountered. Once home I thought much about all this, and it is through the lens of those reflections that I read this weekend’s Scriptures, especially the very familiar Gospel story of the woman caught in adultery. The questions raised for me were about expectations and the value of the past in our lives.

It is not difficult to imagine what the woman’s expectations were as she was dragged out before Jesus. She must have been terrified, deeply shamed, trapped and stripped of all hope for the future. The past, whether it was a one-time encounter or a way of life, must have weighed on her like a millstone. What of those among the Pharisees who hauled her to the Galilean teacher? After all, they had a watertight case: Caught “in flagrante,” the woman was a heinous sinner and deserved the full ferocity of the law. Their own past and present observance of that law must have given them a sense of moral rectitude. They fully expected to be vindicated. Yet both sets of expectations were turned inside out. The woman met mercy and unimaginable acceptance. God, through Jesus, was freeing her from the burdens of the past and instead was doing “something new” in her life. These Pharisees, on the other hand, were forced to look into their less-than-blameless past and confront their inner shame. Neither side was condemned. Grace was offered to both.

QUESTIONS: How can you share Jesus’ merciful truth with those you are tempted to throw stones at and condemn? How can you apply Jesus’ words — “Neither do I condemn you. Go, sin no more” — to them and to yourself ?

Weekly Scripture Readings for the week of April 1 - 7, 2001 Fifth Sunday of Lent, Isaiah 43:16-21, Philippians 3:8-14, John 8:1-11; Monday (St. Francis de Paola), Daniel 13:1-9, 15-17, 19-30, 33-62, John 8:1-11; Tuesday, Numbers 21:4-9, John 8:21-30; Wednesday (St. Isidore), Daniel 3:1420, 91-92, 95, John 8:31-42; Thursday (St. Vincent Ferrer), Genesis 17:3-9, John 8:51-59; Friday (Abstinence), Jeremiah 20:10-13, John 10:31-42; Saturday (St. John Baptist de La Salle), Ezekiel 37:21-28, John 11:45-57 Readings for the week of April 8 - 14, 2001 Palm Sunday, Luke 19:28-40, Isaiah 50:4-7, Philippians 2:6-11, Luke 22:14-23:56; Monday, Isaiah 42:1-7, John 12:1-11; Tuesday, Isaiah 49:1-6, John 13:21-33, 36-38; Wednesday, Isaiah 50:4-9, Matthew 26:14-25; Holy Thursday, Exodus 12:1-8, 11-14, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, John 13:1-15; Good Friday (Fast and Abstinence), Isaiah 52:13-53:12, Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9, John 18:1-19:42; Holy Saturday (Easter Vigil), Exodus 14:15-15:1, Romans 6:3-11, Luke 24:1-12


March 30, 2001

Entertain-

New play tells life story

By JOE WINTER Catholic News Service HUDSON, Wis. (CNS) — By all accounts, a candidate for sainthood who grew up in western Wisconsin never wanted to be the star of the show. However, Capuchin Father Solanus Casey, a candidate for sainthood, now has a play written about his life by a Hudson woman with college degrees in drama and theology. Father Casey was declared “venerable” in 1995, the first of three steps to being declared a saint. He was the first U.S.-born male to reach that stage. Before he can be beatified, which is the next step, a miraculous healing that cannot be attributed to medical intervention but to his intercession must be authenticated. The final step, canonization, would require a second such authenticated miracle. “I think the way that he worked with the poor and the needy really has had an affect on me, personally. He was not famous or someone who held a high position in the church,” writer Molly Delaney Druffner told the Catholic Herald, newspaper of the Superior Diocese. Father Casey was a largely unschooled man who got to know the poor while working as a doorkeeper in parishes and church offices. In later years, until his death in 1957, he was sought out by large numbers of people who believed he had gifts of prophecy and healing. Bernard Francis Casey was born near Prescott, Wis., on Nov. 25, 1870, the sixth of 16 children of an Irish immigrant couple. The play gives the audience a sense of the history of the Hudson and Prescott areas and of Stillwater, Minn., during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, said Druffner. She was in the midst of rehearsals as director of a planned March 24-25 staging of her work at St. Patrick Church in Hudson. The multimedia drama requires 20 actors and includes historical retellings, a monologue, comedy, slides, dance and music.

As a young man, Father Casey worked on the St. Croix River near Stillwater in the logging trade, drove a trolley car in Superior, and worked at the Stillwater Prison guarding, among others, the Jesse James gang. After becoming a Capuchin priest and moving to Detroit, and then to New York City, Father Casey was widely recognized for his services to the poor at soup kitchens, Druffner said. “His miracles were done in a simple way. He blessed people and prayed for them,” she said, adding that he never sought the spotlight. Druffner called the rehearsals extensive and said the cast of actors, who are from St. Patrick’s and other area churches, has often prayed together. “This play is important because he lived right here and he had first Communion in our (St. Patrick’s) parish,” said Barb Ruemmele, who helped with Druffner’s research. “He helped people with all different kinds of problems. He did it by praying; he never wanted to draw attention to himself,” added Ruemmele, who directs the local chapter of the Father Solanus Guild. “She asked me to put together a skit on his life. That was about a year ago,” Druffner said. “But when I did the research, I found that his life was far too fantastic to just do a skit. It needed to be a full-fledged play.” Father Casey’s life is perfect for the stage because of his many experiences, she said. Father Casey spent much time as a porter, writing from his desk and giving counsel to people who came by. In the play, he is shown reading from his journals at the right side of the stage, while on the left side, flashbacks are enacted by the other actors. In one scene, Father Casey is riding a streetcar and sees a woman murdered by her lover. He decides to become a priest to help prevent such injustice. Father Casey

retells the experience while it is portrayed on the other side of the stage. In another scene, the soup kitchen runs out of bread, and, after Father Casey prays, a truck comes by and delivers all the loaves that are needed. Deacon Peter Braam, who some local parishioners say resembles Father Casey, had to be persuaded to portray him. Deacon Braam at first declined because he is going through chemotherapy for cancer. “I’m tired but this could be good for me,” he told Druffner. He thought the role could play a double benefit since Father Casey has long been associated with healing. “I think (his medical situation) keeps

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him in touch with who Solanus is,” Ruemmele said. “He was a man of humility and the play shows that. The acting by Braam shows that.” Four Capuchin priests from the St. Bonaventure Monastery in Detroit, a place where Father Casey served and the headquarters of his canonization campaign, planned to see the play.

CNS photo from 20th Century Fox

Scene from movie ‘Say It Isn’t So’ Heather Graham and Chris Klein star in the film “Say It Isn’t So.” The U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-IV -- adults, with reservations. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted.

“Jesus Christ Superstar” to air April 11, PBS

By Gerri Pare Catholic News Service NEW YORK (CNS) — A new adaptation of the Tim Rice-Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, “Jesus Christ Superstar,” comes to television on Wednesday, April 11, 8-10 p.m. EDT on PBS (check local listings). The production is based on a recent Broadway revival, not the popular 1973 theatrical film. Although the Crucifixion scene is powerful and moving, other scenes may trouble the Catholic audience, as Judas (Jerome Pradon) is basically depicted as what the press notes describe as a “victim of a divine plan,” a “preselected pawn.” He, not Jesus (Glenn Carter), is in fact the central character of the drama. There are gay undertones throughout the dramatization, most obviously when Christ is taken before a preening King Herod (Rik Mayall) who, attired in a white tux backed by sequined showgirls, musically taunts Jesus, mocking him as King of the Jews. For sure, the production, with its contemporary look, is highly theatrical but just as often it is shrill. Jesus and Judas frequently argue and Australian director

Gale Edwards concludes, “Judas becomes as much a victim of fate as Jesus does.” The faithful looking for spiritual uplift from this program are unlikely to embrace a vision of the Savior as a mere victim of fate. Indeed, title star Carter has stated, “It’s incredible the relevancies the Jesus story has today — not religious ones particularly but humanitarian ones” — hardly an inspiring sentiment to the millions of followers of Christ. However, some of the songs still resonate 30 years later. In the role of Mary Magdalene, Renee Castle is stunning and her rendition of “I Don’t Know How to Love Him” memorable. Overall, the program is uneven. It’s an ambitious production with some touching moments, but the desire to look “edgy” overwhelms the narrative; edgy seems to be the goal of TV fare nowadays. Mary, the Mother of God, figures nowhere in the story and the beating of Christ before the Crucifixion is excessively gory. Fred Johanson’s portrayal of Pontius Pilate seems more perverse than powerful, yet Christ’s subsequent agony and his words on the cross come across as very real. A controversial interpretation of Christ’s last week on earth, it would probably not appeal to more conservative Catholics and is too strong for


1 2 The Catholic News & Herald

March 30, 2001

Editorials & Col-

The Pope Speaks

POPE JOHN PAUL II

Pope urges greater recognition of women in society, church

By JOHN THAVIS Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope John Paul II said that despite decades of progress in women’s rights, women are still awaiting full recognition of their dignity in society and in the church. Women’s dignity is especially harmed by practices like sex tourism, mass sterilization and various forms of violence, the pope said. He termed abortion an “aberration” that distorts the idea of women’s rights and weakens those of unborn children. The pope’s comments came in a message to some 600 delegates of the World Union of Catholic Women’s Organizations, which held a general assembly in Rome March 17-21. Since 1910, the movement has brought together women from church activist groups all over the world. The pope told the delegates that, when it comes to appreciation of women and their role, “the journey traveled in the course of the past century has been remarkable.” “In many countries women today enjoy freedom of movement, of decision and of self-expression, a freedom which they have achieved with clear-mindedness and courage,” he said. But he said the delegates were rightly praying for an end to “the many obstacles which still hinder full recognition of the dignity and mission of women in society and within the ecclesial community.” Among the impediments to women’s genuine fulfillment, he said, were those created by the prevailing culture across the globe, including models of life that are “contrary to women’s deeper nature.” “There have been serious aberrations, some arising from individual selfishness and a refusal to love, others from a mentality that stresses each individual’s rights to such an extent that respect for the rights of others is weakened, and particularly those of defenseless unborn children who in many cases are deprived of all legal protection,” he said. The pope said part of the role of the Catholic women’s organizations was to be a voice in international forums and “insist that every life is a gift of God and deserves to be respected.” He also encouraged the organizations to help provide more material and moral support to women in difficulty, including victims of poverty and violence. This is especially important today “in a world fascinated by success and efficiency, but in which many people have no share in the benefits of global progress and are becoming poorer and more neglected than ever,” he said. Within the church, he said, “feminine holiness” is indispensable and is rooted in the role of Mary in the early days of the Christian community. “The world and the church need your specific witness,” he said. The pope said women were uniquely gifted to transmit the faith and apply it to all of life’s circumstances, in the family and in the worlds of work, study and leisure. “Today, at a time of a deep spiritual and cultural crisis, this task has assumed an urgency that cannot be overstated,” he said.

Missing out for no good reason My son, a high school sophomore, is currently in the process of trying out for a spring sport which shall remain nameless except that it involves walking around a lot with a stick in your hand and gazing, mostly in frustration, at a little white ball. This story, such as it is, isn’t about my son. It’s about how his chances of making the team have improved in the last week because of someone else — one of the top players in this sport, who has been revealed to be ineligible for one simple reason: He’s failing ceramics class. Don’t know how, don’t know why, but there it is. The kid currently is flunking pottery, so he can’t be on the team. Has anything like that ever happened to you? Have you ever missed out on doing something important because of another thing you forgot or neglected to do which didn’t seem to be that important at the time? Take school. When it starts, a semester seems like a very long time. A teacher’s syllabus, presented at the beginning of the term, can appear to be packed with way too many assignments, some clearly weightier than others. No, you’d never dream of deliberately taking a zero on a test or term paper. But that quiz? That set of end-of-chapter questions? It’s just a little assignment. Yikes. Did you see that report card? Did you see that you almost made a “C” in that class? Did you hear what the teacher said when you went down on your knees to ask for “just - one - more - point? Please?” The teacher said: “Well, sure, there’s just one point between you and a better grade. Seems to me, though, that you could have fixed it very simply by turning in that set of homework questions you seem to have forgotten about a while back. Yup. That would have done it. Next?” Little things. It’s funny how little things can make a difference. It’s true even in our relationships with God.

Light One Candle Msgr. Jim Lisante, Director, The Christophers

later, I regularly hear from Mike and his wife Peg. They send pictures of their children and invite me to be a part of their lives. They care about my wellbeing. They are there for me as I am for them. Nancy’s response was different. In her time of need and loneliness, she counted on me and others with great fervor. She frequently announced that while marriage might never happen, and romantic relationships were not to be trusted, our friendships were “for always.” Then she met a good guy. From the moment it got serious, her friends were left behind. Calls and notes went ignored. Invitations went unanswered. Nancy had finally found a true love, and the friends who nurtured her through the disappointing past no longer served a purpose. Friendship is a precious gift. It lifts us through the times in life when we’re fragile. It can help us to see the wonderful possibilities beyond our immediate sadness. Friendship is a salve that binds wounds we imagine will never heal. We’re not obligated to live for our friends. But we are obligated to appreciate the good they do for us in our hour of need because real friendship is never one-sided. Who are those who have sustained you in the dark times? Have you returned the favor? Have you said thank you? Today would be a good time to remember and to be the friend you would want to have.

Coming of Age Amy Welborn CNS Columnist

You have to understand, first, that your relationship with God isn’t like a class. It’s not that God has a big old grade book in which he keeps track of how many assignments you’ve turned in. Not at all. But we’re not talking about God’s end of this. We’re talking about your end. The simple fact is that if you neglect what seem like small aspects of your relationship with God, the whole thing will suffer. We get into trouble when we let our spiritual life slide in little ways such as neglecting prayer; forgetting that virtue is something that has to be practiced every day, in small ways; letting your heart be guided by what the world desires, rather than what God desires. This trouble we get into isn’t about punishment or God turning away from us. It’s about what we lose when we don’t let God’s love in. It’s about putting ourselves in a situation in which, because we’ve not been listening to God in the little ways, we forget what his voice sounds like, and we start to harbor the suspicion that we’re all alone in the world, without a soul to care about us. And that is a pretty sad situation — sadder even than ineligibility due to a grade in pottery, don’t you think?

Nancy and Mike My first parish assignment was to a church named St. Boniface. A great blend of cultures and people, it was brimming with activity. The one area that needed some work was for parishioners 18 through 30. So with my pastor’s encouragement, I set out to establish our first young adult group. The ministry grew quickly, with members totaling nearly three hundred. Weekly meetings were packed with great people (at that time, many around my age!) who came to meet others, explore their faith and form supportive friendships. Many were at crossroads, trying to determine the purpose of life and their place in society. Many had dated and found the experience wanting. Others simply refused to believe in the reality of real or permanent love. For some, who had had a few rough relationships, marriage was a faraway notion and not for them. Two in that last group were Mike and Nancy. Let down by love too often, they had grown cynical about the prospects of permanent commitment. Because they were a little needy and unsure of their personal value (broken hearts can do that), and given to late night conversations, they often wanted to hang out with the young priest. There were many times I found their company delightful and uplifting. An equal number of times I would gladly have paid someone to date them and give me a break! Like most troubles or obstacles in life, their romantic crises found resolution in time. Mike discovered a great gal and, after several years of dating, married her. Nancy was equally blessed. I mention all this because of their responses to that good fortune. Mike appreciated that he had been a slight burden during the time we’d spent together sifting through his losses in love. So when his life changed for the better, he was grateful for the attention he had gotten. Mike continued to visit, bringing his new love by to get acquainted and remaining a real friend. Mike remembered the down times and never forgot to say “Thanks for the support when I really needed it.” To this day, almost fifteen years


March 30, 2001

Editorials & Col-

Planned Giving Gina M. Rhodes Guest Columnist

what does the absence of a will reveal? In the planned giving office at the Diocese of Charlotte, we want you to experience the good feelings of having a well-considered and well-crafted will (or other comprehensive estate planning document). We encourage you to take care of this very important matter. And to help you, we offer a complimentary booklet, “How To Make A Will That Works,” which is yours for the asking. Further, if you want to talk with us about finding a good estate planning attorney or about how to leave a bequest to your parish, Catholic school, agency, the diocese or the Foundation, we are available to help you. This is a free service. Please call me, Gina Rhodes, director of planned giving, at (704) 370-3320 or write to me at 1123 S. Church Street, Charlotte, N.C. 28203.

length not long ago, noted that when we use words, even biblical words, to describe eternal realities, it is essential to realize we are speaking symbolically and figuratively. Therefore, said the pope, the words need to be interpreted symbolically. For example, even though we speak of “going to” heaven, or “being in” heaven, or about the “fires of hell,” he explained, heaven (and hell and purgatory) are not abstractions or physical places, at least in our experience of “place.” They are relationships, or lack of relationships, with the Holy Trinity. Actually, we’re quite accustomed to this in countless other contexts. When Jesus or the creed speak of his sitting at the right hand of the Father, we instinctively know those words are to be understood metaphorically, symbolically. Thus, scriptural language describing eternal realities cannot be interpreted literally. They are God’s attempts, through the sacred authors, somehow to put into human language realities which are ultimately humanly inexpressible. None of these limitations at all contradicts or minimizes Catholic doctrines, including those you mention in your question. They simply say in another way something we already know, that God’s world, his framework of time and space, is not ours. To require that we interpret those time-related words literally, to insist, for example, that we will literally wait around for centuries after death anticipating the resurrection or whatever else may come, would be to circumscribe God, to enclose and limit his actions inside our earthly frame of time. It deserves repeating that when our Holy Father says purgatory “is not a place” but a “condition,” a “process of purification,” he is saying nothing new in Catholic teaching. Even though popular Catholic tradition speaks of “time in purgatory” and so on, the church has never officially taught (except as reflecting the figurative language of the Bible) that this purgation or purification is an actual location or that it involves time, again as we experience it. Obviously, none of this in any way denies that, after sinning in this life, a purification from our imperfections may take place upon death and that this suffering can be lessened, as the pope says, “through prayers and works of love.” To cite Pope John Paul once more, descriptions of heaven and other eternal realities will always remain inadequate. It is good to remember this. Trying to participate in those realities by imitating Christ and sharing in his paschal mystery is more important than describing them. The above citations from Pope John Paul are mainly from his addresses during papal audiences on July 21 and 28, and Aug. 4, 1999.

What your will reveals about you Your will says something about you. First, it says that you care about your loved ones. You want to make it easier for them by taking care of legal matters relating to the transfer of your estate. You want your affairs handled smoothly and without undue inconvenience to those who will be experiencing grief. Second, having a will means that you have sought to safeguard your estate. You can reduce taxes and probate costs by designating what things will go where and who will be responsible for handling the details. The cost savings resulting from a carefully constructed estate plan means that more of your estate can go to family members and other beneficiaries. Third, your will provides insight into your lifetime involvements and concerns. Bequests to family members tell of your love and concern for their welfare. And bequests to organizations speak volumes about your values. For example, when you include your parish, Catholic school, agency, the diocese or the Foundation in your will, you reveal that caring for others is worthwhile, and you affirm your belief in the mission of the Catholic faith. Such action encourages those you leave behind to consider how they can help those in need. Finally, when you include your parish, Catholic school, agency, the diocese or the Foundation in your will, you tell us at the diocese that you want us to continue to fulfill the mission of the Catholic faith in this world. You reveal your vision for our future! You encourage us to be good stewards of the new resources you place in our hands. Your will says other things as well about your interests and values and commitments. And because it says so much, you are wise to think it through carefully. If having a will says so many good things about you,

Question Corner

FATHER JOHN DIETZEN CNS Columnist Scriptural Language Describing Eternal Realities Q. Your recent column about what happens to our souls when we die raises some serious questions for me. You acknowledge that most questions about eternity can be answered in detail only with some amount of speculation. But you quote people, for example, who theorize that the next conscious moment after death could be the resurrection. You then say that this could “make sense, insofar as any explanation we might make of the next life can make sense, given our very limited experiences in this life.” Don’t these opinions deny such Catholic doctrines as prayers for the dead, the Communion of Saints, the judgment, purgatory or the fact that some people, great saints maybe, go to heaven immediately? Do you really think all the dead are in some giant dormitory until the end of the world? (Louisiana) A. Your concerns, and those of others who wrote to me, seem to be based on an assumption that somehow there must be time — days, weeks, years — after death, similar to the time divisions we experience in this life. As you said, I noted that final answers to what and how things happen in eternity involve some speculation. But speculation is not simply pulling ideas out of the blue sky. It’s using what we know to try to explain things we don’t, and cannot, understand now. For example we know that time-related terms — words like “immediately,” “until,” “before,” “after” — cannot simply be transferred to the framework of life after death, to eternity. Eternity, or infinity, by definition cannot be divided into parts; there can be no half, or 365th, of eternity. Thus, can there truly be any “past” or “future” in eternity? As we say, for God all created reality, from beginning to end, is one eternally present moment. In this context, everything happens, so to speak, “immediately,” with no time gaps. It’s a different way of thinking than we are used to, of course. But Pope John Paul II, who discussed these matters at

The Catholic News & Herald 13

Lenten Reflection FATHER JOHN PUTNAM Guest Columnist Love and responsibility During the C-cycle on the 5th Sunday of Lent, we are invited to listen to the Gospel account of the Woman Caught in Adultery. It is a narrative that is familiar to all of us. It has been the topic of many spiritual reflections as well as the object of many academic pursuits. At the core of the account, however, are two unmistakable realities, the enduring love of God and our response to that love. We know the scene well. The woman, caught in adultery, is thrown before Jesus as a trap, with a crowd all too ready to stone her to death. Jesus’ response to the crowd is simple yet profound, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” If the narrative ended here, that, by itself, would be a wonderful reminder of God’s mercy. However, the narrative continues. After asking, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” Jesus expresses the depths of the Father’s love when he says, “Neither do I condemn you. Go, and from now on do not sin any more.” Love and responsibility might seem at first glance to be a rather odd title for a Lenten reflection. Yet, within the title we see, God’s wonderful plan for us unfold. Daily we are offered the infinite mercy and love of God. At the same time, with the offering comes responsibility. Pope John Paul II used this title in his treatise on love, marriage and human sexuality, yet it is a most appropriate description of the call of all Christians. Our responsibility is to accept the love and mercy of God and allow that gift to guide us in our daily lives; to guide us to take responsibility for our actions; to go and sin no more. The Apostle James reminds us that faith without works is dead (2:17). In other words, we can profess our faith in the Lord every day of the year yet if that faith is not expressed in the concrete events and decisions of our lives, it is an empty faith. Jesus summarizes this call in Matthew 7:21 when he says, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” The narrative of the adulterous woman illustrates that regardless of our weakness, regardless of our sinfulness, regardless of our past failures, the Lord ever desires to lift us up and set us on the path that leads to life. We believe and know, however, that Jesus will never force us to follow the path. He makes the offer and allows us to decide. The Lenten season provides us ample opportunities to accept the love of God. We hear about his love in the Scriptures. We experience his love in the sacraments, especially in the sacraments of penance and Eucharist. As this season draws to a close and as we look toward Holy Week and the Paschal Triduum, let us accept the responsibility that comes with the Lord’s love and commit ourselves to not only professing the faith but also living it today and throughout the year. Father John Putnam is pastor at Sacred Heart


1 4 The Catholic News & Herald

March 30, 2001

In the

Face of Pope John XXIII found well preserved 38 years By John Thavis Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Church officials who opened the casket of Pope John XXIII found his face well preserved nearly 38 years after his death, but the Vatican downplayed talk of a miracle. The discovery was made in mid-January, when Vatican officials and technicians exhumed Pope John’s body in a “recognition” ceremony, in anticipation of its transferal from the grotto to the main level of St. Peter’s Basilica. A detailed report on the procedure, drawn up by the officials present, was published by a Venetian newspaper March 24. The exhumation took most of a day, since workmen had to open a marble casing and then three successive caskets: one of oak, one of lead and one of cypress, in which the body was closed. “Once freed from the cloth that covered it, the face of the blessed (Pope John) appeared intact, with the eyes closed and the mouth slightly open, and bearing the features that immediately called to mind the familiar appearance of the venerated pontiff,” the report said. At a March 27 press conference, Cardinal Virgilio Noe, one of those who witnessed the exhumation, said the entire body was incorrupt. The body was witnessed by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Vatican secretary of state, and several others. After it was officially recognized, the body was sprayed with

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an anti-bacterial agent and the casket was resealed hermetically. Like other recent popes, the body of Pope John was not embalmed, although it was treated with chemicals so that it could be displayed for the faithful before burial. The discovery produced considerable surprise among church people in Rome, but Father Ciro Benedettini, a Vatican spokesman, cautioned against reading too much into the finding. “Objectively, the body was discovered to be preserved. But this does not necessarily mean that a supernatural event was involved,” he said. Cardinal Noe also downplayed the finding, noting the relatively short time since the pontiff ’s burial. He cited the case of Pope Boniface VIII, whose body and burial clothing were found completely intact in 1605, 302 years after his death. But at a subsequent exhumation in 1835, all that remained were the pontiff ’s bones. A Vatican technician present at Pope John’s exhumation said that in his view there was “nothing miraculous” about the body’s preservation. “When he died, some measures were taken for the display of the body for the veneration of the faithful. It also should not be forgotten that the remains were kept in three caskets, one of which was sealed lead,” Nazareno Gabrielli, a technician at the Vatican Museums, told the newspaper Corriere of Catholic rites and rituals. Available no later than November 1, 2000. Salary commensurate with education and experience. Benefits package included. Send resume to: DOMM Search Committee, Holy Infant Catholic Church, 5000 Southpark Dr., Durham, NC 27713. Fax 919/544-1799. References required at time of application for consideration for this position. Director of Music Ministry: Part-time position for growing 800-member parish. St. Mary’s Church, Shelby and Christ the King Mission, Kings Mountain is seeking qualified person proficient in organ and with vocal ability to work with cantors and choir. Responsibilities include one Saturday evening service and two Sunday services (one in Kings Mountain and one in Shelby). Salary commensurate with education and experience. Send resume and references to: St. Mary’s Music Search Committee, 818 McGowan Rd., Shelby NC 28150 or Fax: (704)487-0187. For more information on our parish, visit www.rc.net/charlotte/ stmaryshelby Faith Formation Coordinator: Part-time. This position is for grades K-6 and Confirmation Program. Salary commensurate with education and experience. Please send resume and references to: Search Committee, St. Ann’s Church, 3635 Park Road, Charlotte, NC 28209. Preschool Teachers: St. Mark Parish, Huntersville, is seeking dedicated and spiritual teachers for its new preschool opening fall 2001. The lead teacher candidate will be degreed in Early Childhood Education or similar education field. The assistant teacher candidate will be at least 21 and a high school graduate.

Photo by Joann S. Keane

Church officials who opened the casket of Pope John XXIII found his face well preserved nearly 38 years after his death, but the Vatican downplayed talk of a miracle. della Sera. Other experts said that while this type of preservation was unusual, it could be explained by the fact that little or no oxygen could have reached the remains. But popular Catholic writer Vittorio Messori appeared to speak for many Italians when he said it was clearly a miracle. “When the body of a blessed or a saint

is discovered to be uncorrupted, this is considered a sign, and is interpreted as an anticipation of the resurrection. So it is also a confirmation of sanctity,” Messori said. Last year Pope John Paul II beatified Pope John, who is unive r s a l ly r e m e m b e r e d fo r h i s sense of humanity and for his leadership in convoking the Second Vatican Council.

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March 30, 2001

Around the Dio-

Youth choir performs contemporary Stations of the By WENDY E. MURRAY Correspondent ASHEVILLE — Lent is a time for repentance, sacrifice and forgiveness. Helping local youth get interested in Lenten activities, 15 teen-agers from St. Eugene Church in Asheville staged a musical performance of the Stations of the Cross, combining their talent, eloquence and faith. Lending their own prayers and selective musical pieces, the youth transformed the Stations of the Cross into a contemplative and reverent prayer service. These young men and women, ages 11 to 18, reached into the depths of their own experiences to bring parishioners their version of what it must have been like to walk the road with Jesus as he journeyed to his final destination. Devoting months before their performance, Rita Pisano, director of Children’s and Youth Music at St. Eugene, instructed each youth to reflect on the thoughts and feelings of the people surrounding Jesus and to find parallels to the physical hardships of that time. “I asked them to come up with songs that matched what they thought Jesus may be experiencing as he walked the path to Calvary,” said Pisano. “If you give them what to think about, they will find it all by themselves.” Andrew Richardson, 14, a prayer reader and eighth-grader attending Ashe-

ville Christian Academy, commented, “I like to support our Youth Group, but I never really thought about the Stations of the Cross until now. Being in this program has made me wonder, would I be willing to do this? Could I follow Jesus to the Cross?” Opening the performance with Robert Batastini’s 1942 African-American gospel song, “Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?”, the audience had a chance to reflect upon what lay ahead for Jesus. At the third Station, as Jesus falls the first time, Elena Pisano, 15, and Hana Chmielewski, 14, astounded the audience with their cherubic rendition of the pop group Indigo Girls song “Secure Yourself.” Elena is an accomplished singer/ dancer whose credits include numerous performances with the Asheville Lyric Opera, Asheville Jazz Works and Asheville Madrigal Singers. “When I sing anywhere, it’s a gift from God,” said Elena. “I’m thankful for this gift. We got a chance to use music that our age group relates to, and that made the performance all the more meaningful for us.” At Station five, when Simon is yanked from the crowd to help Jesus carry his cross, the choir resounded with Simon & Garfunkel’s ’60s classic, “Bridge Over Troubled Water.” Jesus speaks to the women at Station

eight. Through the chosen number, “Be Not Afraid,” the audience was reaffirmed that Jesus goes before us and promises that if we follow him, he will give us rest. Singing the Beatles classic “Let It Be,” Ricky Kovacs, 14, sounding just like a young John Lennon, made it easy to hear Jesus’ resignation as he falls a third time. As reader Ami Pisano, 11, added, “I like to do things like this because it makes church and the Bible more understandable, and it’s coming from my age group.” Hearing a well-worn steel pot and wooden spoon for a musical instrument, the audience shuttered when the sound effects accompanied the slamming of the nails into the flesh of Jesus at Station eleven. The reader implored all to reflect upon the hideous evils that exist in our world today. When Jesus is gently placed in the tomb, the choir sang another Beatles classic, “Yesterday,” instilling shock waves of emptiness and grief. At the end of the performance, the church was invited to join in singing “I Danced in the Morning,” followed by Hana Chmielewski’s hand-clapping violin rendition of this Celtic folk song: “I am the Lord of the dance, said he, and I’ll lead you all, wherever you may be, and I’ll lead you all in the dance, said he.” It brought the audience to their feet in awe. “There’s nothing more beautiful than watching kids discover God”, added Pisano. “Every year I am touched by what they teach me.”

The Catholic News & Herald 15

LEGACY, from page 5 said in his homilies that he sided with neither the right nor the left, but with the Word of God, “he was signaling his own death” by his statements of belief, Roberto said. And, he added, the archbishop himself knew that his name was on a list of those to be executed. By becoming the voice for justice, by believing in the transcendent power of God and by knowing that his martyrdom was inevitable, Romero, with his voice, “would become the incarnate voice of Christ in El Salvador.” As a leader in the church, Archbishop Romero was a man marked by greatness, dilemma and tragedy, Roberto said. Moreover, he added, the archbishop believed that through faith, profound change was possible. “To each one of us Christ is saying: If you want your life and mission to be fruitful like mine, do as I,” Archbishop Romero said in an April 1979 homily. “Be converted into a seed that lets itself be buried. Let yourself be killed. Do not be afraid.” Then, later that month: “A civilization of love that did not demand justice of people would not be a true civilization. ... It is a caricature of love to try to cover over with alms what is lacking in justice, to patch over with an appearance of benevolence when social justice is missing. True love begins by demanding what is just in the relations of those who love.”

Diane O’Madigan, St. Lorraine LaPointe of Leo parishioner, dies St. Margaret Church dies at 66 at 62

WINSTON-SALEM — Mrs. Diane Roberta O’Madigan, 62, of Winston-Salem died Thursday, March 22, 2001, at Forsyth Medical Center after a long battle with cancer. Diane was born on March 15, 1939, in Malden, Mass., to Charles and Gertrude Hartman. She was a member of St. Leo’s Catholic Church. She was a caring, loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister and most importantly a friend to every one. Diane was preceded in death by her father. Her mother passed away a scant 10 days ago. Sur vivors include her husband of 43 years, Rev. Mr. Dennis O’Madigan, a permanent deacon of the Diocese of Charlotte; three daughters, Kathleen Hinsley and husband Robert of Salisbury, Patricia Sechrest and husband Richard of Winston-Salem, and Sharon Dunham and husband Keith of Concord; a son, Dennis Michael O’Madigan and wife Stephanie of Charlotte; a sister, Lee Woodbury of Atkenson, N.H.; two brothers, William Hartman and wife Jannette of Gilbert, Ariz., and the Rev. Charles Hartman and wife Anona of Quincy, Mass., and a special friend, Marie Collins. Diane loved and was loved in return by six wonderful grandchildren, Matthew, Alexandra, Meaghan, Brian, Bri and Emma. A Memorial Mass of the Angels was celebrated Saturday, March 24, at St. Leo’s Catholic Church. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the American Cancer

MAGGIE VALLEY — Lorraine Alice Mills LaPointe of Maggie Valley died Friday, March 23, 2001. She was 66. Daughter of the late Reginald and Alice Guay Mills, LaPointe was a native of Laconia, N.H. She worked as a screener for the Hunter Blood Center in Florida and was a hostess for 13 years at Joey’s Pancake House in Maggie Valley, N.C. She was an active parishioner at St. Margaret Catholic Church in Maggie Valley, where on March 9 of this year, she witnessed the ordination of her husband, Jerry, to the permanent diaconate. She was active in the church choir, was in the ministry to the sick and dying, and served as an altar server and eucharistic minister. She was also an advocate for cancer prevention. Augustinian Father Frank Doyle, pastor of St. Margaret, presided at the March 26 funeral Mass at St. Margaret Church. Lorraine LaPointe is survived by her husband, Rev. Mr. Jerry LaPointe of Maggie Valley; two sons, Michael and his wife, Brenda, and Peter LaPointe, all of Clearwater, Fla.; four daughters, Christine Lavine, Marlene and Ken Csunyo, Lisa and Bob Johnson, all of Clearwater, Fla., and Alicia and Louis Montez of St. Petersburg, Fla.; and seven grandchildren. Memorials may be made to St. Margaret Catholic Church, 1422 Soco Rd., Maggie Valley, N.C. 28751-1359, or to the American Cancer Society.


1 6 The Catholic News & Herald

Vatican urges U.N. in monitoring bioengineered foods

By John Norton VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The environmental and human health risks of bio-engineered foods demand stronger international norms and controls, a Vatican official said. Archbishop Agostino Marchetto, the Vatican’s permanent observer to U.N. food and hunger agencies, said the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization in particular should consider taking a leading role, especially in education and preventative measures. The diplomat spoke March 26 at the 16th session of the Rome-based agency’s Committee on Agriculture. His speech was released at the Vatican March 28. He said the health and environmental issues raised by genetically altered foods have a global impact and require the enactment of international standards. Such policies must incorporate a “principle of precaution,” the Vatican diplomat said. He said the Food and Agriculture Organization should actively pursue “biosecurity” questions, drawing on its position as a centralized agency of information and research on agricultural issues. “This would permit the organization to continue to help member states enact control procedures for the food production phase and means of intervention in the face of emergencies,” he said. Greater international cooperation was also needed to protect “diverse agricultural ecosystems” from the consequences of climactic change and

Living the

Life’s dedication to faith lends ministerial support By ALESHA M. PRICE Staff Writer CHARLOTTE — Rev. Mr. Guy Piche’ did not know what to expect after receiving the phone call to preside at funeral services for a motorcycle rider with Hell’s Angels. He looked out at the sea of black leather jackets and t-shirts and wondered how he would eulogize the deceased and respect his family, friends and the deceased’s mother. He had to keep focused as he read some of the obscene messages on the t-shirts of the attendants and felt a little strange riding in the procession in a cavalcade of motorcycles. However, he was able to perform the ceremony with the support of those in attendance. “It touched him that he was able to be a part of that group, and it made it meaningful and memorable for them in a reverent and solemn way,” said his wife, Rachel Piche’. “They accepted him as being a part of their group because he is able to make the service about the people and not about him.” Instilled by his parents, his desire and ability to serve others helped build the foundation for Rev. Mr. Piche’s decision to enter the permanent diaconate. Faith and spirituality have always

“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” — John 8: 12

Photo by Joann S. Keane

March 30, 2001

a good influence on one another and have guided one another through our faith journeys.” The couple moved back to Belmont and became active in Mrs. Piche’s home church, Queen of the Apostles, where she had been the church organist since her teens. Rev. Mr. Piche’ also became active in his new parish home as parish council and finance council chairpersons and with his two children’s education on the diocesan and local schoolboards. been a part of his life since his childAfter working with Archbishop hood in Detroit, Mich. John F. Donoghue on the diocesan “Mom and Dad were insistent on schoolboard, Rev. Mr. Piche’ was asked God being important in our (his and to write a job description for a diocesan his brother’s) lives and being active in fiscal manager. When finished, the the church, school and community. I archbishop asked him if he would like think this is where my vocation came the job. from,” said Rev. Mr. Piche’. Also, during that time, Rev. Mr. Actually, Rev. Mr. Piche’s first Piche’ had been having conversations inclination was with his pastor toward the priestabout becoming a hood. He had appermanent deaplied to and had con and enb e e n acce p t e d tered into into a seminary, formation. Thus, but the call of a he began a new future family was job, and after bestronger than the ing ordained in call to priesthood. 1988, started in So, he decided to his ministry alattend college. most simultaneDuring that time, ously. his family moved “I wanted to to Charlotte afdeepen my spiriter his father tual life and to received a job continue doing transfer, and the things for the rough Michigan Church. It was winters prompted tremendous for him to migrate Rachel and me South along with and gave us the his family. opportunity to “At first, I grow spiritually thought I was together through Rev. Mr. Guy Piche’ coming to the the classes, and end of the world it deepened our because Charprayer life,” said lotte was slower, but I liked that,” said Rev. Mr. Piche’. Rev. Mr. Piche’. Exploration of the As the diocese continued to grow, growing city and surrounding areas a diocesan director of properties was led Rev. Mr. Piche’ to Belmont Abbey needed to monitor the diocese’s holdCollege. The small student body of ings. Rev. Mr. Piche’, who had been the Catholic institution appealed to assigned to Queen of the Apostles, him, and he entered into the accountfit the bill and was named director of ing program, not missing any time properties. He was also assigned to the between semesters. Catholic Conference Center in Hickory The Piche’ family ideals quickly as director and chaplain, a job which he took hold of his college life as Rev. Mr. says has provided him with the chance Piche’ became involved in the college to spread the faith to others. and continued to develop his spiritual “Being a deacon, I am able to life. “It was a great experience for me reach people on a one-on-one level. So because it served as an opportunity to many people come to the center with a exchange ideas and express my feelshaded view of Catholicism, but after ings about faith,” he said. “Abbot visiting, they leave with a more posiEmeritus Walter Coggin and Father tive attitude toward Catholicism. They Cuthbert Allen focused me on a good are able to recognize the real presence spiritual journey which enhanced my of peace and God’s love in this area.” life, and they continue to be a guiding Because of the demands and travel influence.” with his diocesan jobs, Rev. Mr. Piche’ While attending school, he met his asked to be relieved of his parish duties future wife Rachel, a cradle Catholic from so he could focus his energy on his diBelmont. While dating, he took a job as an ocesan duties. On weekends, he and his auditor in Florida; however, the distance wife visit churches around the diocese proved to be too much for him, and he asked to inspect and gain a feeling of the to be transferred to the Charlotte office to parishes’ spirits. His ministry is still be near Rachel. After about a year, the two at the forefront of his life through were married in 1971. marriage preparation and performing “The dear Lord guided me to Rachel marriage ceremonies, including one and her faith has always been strong. for his son. Her involvement with the church was “It was a very moving and fulfilla good thing for me. We have been ing day to see that everything we

Profile for Catholic News Herald

March 30, 2001  

Catholic News Herald - Serving Christ and Connecting Catholics in Western North Carolina. The official newspaper of the Diocese of Charlotte...

March 30, 2001  

Catholic News Herald - Serving Christ and Connecting Catholics in Western North Carolina. The official newspaper of the Diocese of Charlotte...