July 3, 2009
The Catholic News & Herald 1
Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte
Perspectives Capital punishment; sin’s toxic effects; heroes of many faiths
Established Jan. 12, 1972 by Pope Paul VI jULY 3, 2009
The power of television
| Pages 14-15 Serving Catholics in Western North Carolina in the Diocese of Charlotte
Church starts ministry for high school athletes Ministry First of its kind in the country
KATIE MOORE staff writer
CHARLOTTE — According to Jesuit Father John Kavanaugh, professor of Philosophy at St. Louis University, by age 75 the average American will have spent 14 years of his or her life watching television. Of those, four years will have been spent watching commercials alone. Fortunately, a pro-life media apostolate is taking advantage of those statistics to use the media as a tool for promoting godly virtues and the sanctity of life. Founded in 1998, Virtue Media is a pro-life media
At end of jubilee year, figure of St. Paul stands in clearer focus by JOHN THAVIS catholic news service
VATICAN CITY — After 12 months of special liturgies, conferences, Bible reflections, indulgences, concerts and pilgrimages, the Year of St. Paul has left the Apostle a more clearly defined figure on the Catholic landscape. Even before Pope Benedict XVI led final closing ceremonies in Rome June 29, See PAULINE, page 6
KATIE MOORE staff writer
Photo by Katie Moore
HUNTERSVILLE — What do basketball, ultimate Frisbee and faith have in common? For members of Catholic Athletes for Christ at St. Mark Church in Huntersville, they were all part of their summer kick-off meeting June 10. Catholic Athletes for Christ (CAC) is a national organization founded by Ray McKenna, a Washington, D.C. attorney and sports chaplain, in response to Pope John Paul II’s call to evangelize the world of sports and to the establishment of the Vatican’s office of Church and Sport. According to the
Father Patrick Hoare gives a final blessing to the athletes and adult volunteers at the kick-off meeting for Catholic Athletes for Christ at St. Mark Church in Huntersville June 10.
See ATHLETES, page 9
See ADS, page 7
Faith, fitness and fellowship
Apostolate uses commercials to promote, defend sanctity of human life by
Busy are the bishops Liturgy, immigration, marriage among issues at USCCB spring meeting SAN ANTONIO (CNS) — Liturgical matters, immigration reform and same-sex marriage were among the topics discussed by the U.S. bishops in public sessions at their June 17-19 spring meeting in San Antonio. But the bishops also devoted time — in executive session — to the recent controversy over the University of Notre Dame’s decision to award
an honorary degree to U.S. President Barack Obama. They emerged from the meeting with a two-sentence affirmation of Bishop John M. D’Arcy of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Ind., for his “pastoral concern” for the university. The only two liturgical texts receiving definitive approval See BISHOPS, page 5
CNS photo by Bahram Mark Sobhani
Bishop Victor B. Galeone (center) of St. Augustine, Fla., reads from Scripture during the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ spring meeting in San Antonio June 17.
Around the Diocese
Youths in Action
Knights, Columbiettes help others in community
College students serve homeless; new Eagle Scout
Book on threats to Catholic health care
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July 3, 2009
2 The Catholic News & Herald
Current and upcoming topics from around the world to your own backyard
WASHINGTON (CNS) —A U.S. bishop and the head of Catholic Relief Services called on Congress to ensure “the poorest people and countries on earth” have adequate financial assistance to help them adapt to the effects of climate change. Bishop Howard J. Hubbard of Albany, N.Y., chairman of the bishops’ Committee on International Justice and Peace, and Ken Hackett, CRS president, made the comment in a June 22 letter to Congress on behalf of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. On June 25, the House was scheduled to vote on national climate change legislation called the American Clean Energy and Security Act. Bishop Hubbard and Hackett said in geneal they were encouraged by the measure’s provisions aimed at protecting the poor and vulnerable at home and abroad in the latest climate change legislation. They said they approved of “mechanisms put in place to provide adapta-
CNS photo by Clarice Keating, Catholic Sentinel
Rafaela Garcia works in a garden at St. Alexander Church in Cornelius, Ore., in early May. Providing places where low-income or apartment-dwelling parishioners can grow their own produce has become increasingly popular within parish communities.
Parishes’ gardens help struggling families grow own food CORNELIUS, Ore. (CNS) — Farming feels like home for many families tending plots in St. Alexander Church’s community garden. “This is helpful for them,” said Alejandro Tecum, as he signaled toward the half-dozen people digging and planting next door to the church in Cornelius. “Most of them came from the countryside in Mexico. They love to work the soil because they were doing that since they were children.” Providing places where low-income or apartment-dwelling parishioners can grow their own produce has become increasingly popular within parish communities. With climbing grocery prices and the bad economy, many families are finding it more and more difficult to get healthy food on the table. Tecum is the micro-enterprise program coordinator for Adelante Mujeres, a nonprofit that aims to educate and empower immigrants. He shares sustainable farming practices with participants so they are able to grow their own organic food. The nonprofit also manages a farmers’ market where participants can supplement their incomes by selling food. When leaders at St. Alexander Church decided to build a garden, they didn’t have to go far to find a project supervisor. Tecum also is a parishioner. Concepcion Giron has used the information imparted by Tecum to plant onions, tomatoes, peppers and other fresh crops in the church’s garden. Last year, Giron sold her extra produce after Mass at a table outside the church. Tomasa Yanez uses her summer and fall bounty, which includes cucumbers,
Climate bill must have ample funding to help poor adapt, letter says
string beans and pumpkins, to make salads, tamales and other family favorites. She freezes her leftover crops to feed her family during the winter. Liv Gifford, project manager for the Corvallis Interfaith Food and Farm Partnership, a program of Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon, has noted a shift in beliefs about food. “I don’t hear as often now ‘Oh, they’re low-income; I don’t think highquality local food is for them. They need to buy what’s cheap,’” she said. “Gardening really helps remind people that good food is a human right.” St. Mary Church in Corvallis participates in a community garden at the Westside Community Church. Volunteers use a 500-square-foot plot to grow food for the parish’s food pantry and soup kitchen. Plans also are under way for an organic produce cooperative. Recently, Ecumenical Ministries coordinated a workshop to assist congregations in starting their own gardens. Two Portland parishes signed up and a third parish and its school were in the beginning phases of planning a community garden. In Mount Angel, St. Mary Church has revived an old tradition called “solidarity gardens” to distribute fresh produce to parishioners in need. Benedictine Father Philip Waibel, pastor, said farmers and gardeners bring in excess produce from their crops to be placed on a sharing table before Masses. “We don’t have space here at the parish, so we’re asking people with their own gardens to be in solidarity with those who are in need and who can benefit from this,” Father Waibel said.
Diocesan planner For more events taking place in the Diocese of Charlotte, visit www.charlottediocese. org/calendarofevents-cn. CHARLOTTE VICARIATE CHARLOTTE — St. Gabriel in Transition (SGIT) is a ministry for those who are, or may soon be, facing job layoffs or transitions during these trying economic times. The program goal is to support job seekers in their search for rewarding employment. Learn how we can open ourselves to new points of view and find opportunity in the face of adversity. The next meeting will be July 16 in the St. Gabriel Church Ministry Center 7-9 p.m. Keynote speaker is Keith Eades, a knowledgeable authority on building world-class sales organizations, who will lead a session on how to market yourself. To register, contact Bill Conwell at SGIT@bellsouth.net. CHARLOTTE — A summer study on Women in Church History will be held at St. Vincent de Paul Church, 6828 Old Reid Rd., Wednesdays June 3-July 29 at 10 a.m. (no study July 15). The program will be led by Barbara Reagan, retired high school and college history professor with more than 36 years of experience. For more
tion assistance for poor and vulnerable populations internationally. However, we are deeply disappointed that the funding resources committed to international adaptation fall fundamentally short of what is needed initially and that additional increases in resources are pushed too far off into the future.” “Congress cannot leave the most vulnerable people without adequate help needed to protect their lives and dignity,” they said, calling it “a matter of moral priority and policy.” “Addressing global climate change is both urgent and necessary. House consideration of this groundbreaking legislation begins a serious and overdue effort to face up to moral and environmental challenges and represents an important beginning,” they said. They noted that CRS is “already experiencing the tragic consequences of climate change in the lives of people living in poverty” in the more than 100 countries where the agency works. information, call Aida Tamayo at (704) 554-1622. CHARLOTTE — The Summer Bible Institute at St. Matthew Church, 8015 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy., will take place July 20-24 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Susan Brady will give an exciting and vivid presentation on the Gospel of Mark. All are welcome to attend. For more information or to register in advance, call Susan Brady at (704) 541-8362, ext 4. CHARLOTTE — Bishop Peter J. Jugis will celebrate a Mass for U.S. military personnel July 5 at 3 p.m. at St. Patrick Cathedral, 1621 Dilworth Rd. East. The Mass and rosary, to be recited at 2:30 p.m., will be offered for all military personnel who have died and for those who are now serving. Military personnel are invited and encouraged to come in uniform. Photos of those who have died or who are now serving will be displayed in the cathedral. To include your loved ones, mail a color or black-and-white photocopy of them with their names and military ranks on the back of the photos to Mrs. Nancy Weber, Office of the Bishop, 1123 South Church Street, Charlotte, NC 28203 to be received no later than July 1. Photocopies of pictures will not be returned. CHARLOTTE — A solemn prayer service including a blessing with the relic of St. Peregrine for those suffering from cancer or other incurable diseases will take place at St. Matthew Church, 8015 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy., July 23 at 7:30 p.m. St. Peregrine has been called the “wonder worker” for his intercession on behalf of those living with cancer and other life-threatening diseases. He is the patron saint of all who are afflicted by cancer, leg ailments or any incurable diseases, as well as the patron saint of youths at
july 3, 2 009 Volume 18 • Number 32
Publisher: Most Reverend Peter J. Jugis Editor: Kevin E. Murray STAFF WRITER: Katie Moore Graphic DESIGNER: Tim Faragher Advertising MANAGER: Cindi Feerick Secretary: Deborah Hiles 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: email@example.com
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July 3, 2009
The Catholic News & Herald 3
Pope signs first encyclical on social Pope offers support to U.N. campaign themes to serve common good VATICAN CITY — For more than beliefs, the social encyclicals written by to end use of child soldiers 100 years, Catholic social teaching has most modern-day popes have tried to FROM THE VATICAN
VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Benedict XVI offered his public support to the United Nations’ efforts to prevent the recruitment and deployment of child soldiers and said he prays each day for suffering children around the world. At the end of his weekly general audience June 24, the pope greeted Radhika Coormaraswamy, the U.N. secretary-general’s representative for children and armed conflict, who was accompanied by Grace Akallo and Kon Kelei, former child soldiers. The pope told the group he had deep “appreciation for the commitment to defend child victims of violence and weapons.” “I remember all the children of the world, especially those who are exposed to fear, abandonment, hunger, abuse, sickness and death. The pope is close to all of these little victims and remembers
them always in his prayers,” he said. After meeting Pope Benedict, the group spoke at a conference on the need to increase protection for children in times of war and to provide comprehensive rehabilitation programs to children who have been forced to take up arms. At the conference sponsored by the Rome-based Community of Sant’Egidio, Coormaraswamy said her office estimates there are about 250,000 children currently used as soldiers in wars and guerrilla conflicts around the world. “Communities of faith are communications networks,” she said. They are a key part of an “early warning system” sharing and giving information about kidnappings or murders of children, educating parents and children about the dangers of recruitment ploys and in making sure that church-run schools are “safe zones.”
risk. For more information, call the church office at (704) 543-7677.
caregivers of individuals with mental illnesses. The free course will be held at the church on Thursdays from Sept. 3 through Nov. 19 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Class size will be limited. For more information or to register, call Frank or Pat Cleary at (336) 286-2603. Participants must register before Aug. 6.
CHARLOTTE — The rosary is prayed every Wednesday at Our Lady of the Assumption Church, 4207 Shamrock Dr., at 6:30 p.m. followed by Mass at 7 p.m. All are welcome. For more information, call Juanita Thompson at (704) 536-0784. GREENSBORO VICARIATE GREENSBORO — Theology on Tap, a speaker series for Catholics in their 20s, 30s and 40s, will begin a three-week session in July. Theology on Tap is a casual forum where people gather to learn and discuss the teachings of the Catholic Church. The series will be held on the third floor of Natty Green’s Pub and Brewing Co., 345 S. Elm St., July 7, 14 and 20. Come at 6:45 p.m. to eat and socialize; speaker begins at 7:45 p.m. For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call Deb at (336) 286-3687. GREENSBORO — The Men’s Early Morning Bible Study Group meets Tuesdays, 6:30-7:30 a.m., in the library at St. Paul the Apostle Church, 2715 Horse Pen Creek Rd. The group will begin a six-week program on the Epistle to the Hebrews June 30. For more information, contact Gus Magrinat at email@example.com or John Malmfelt at firstname.lastname@example.org. GREENSBORO — The Flames of Fire charismatic prayer group meets every Thursday evening at 7:30 p.m. in St. Joseph’s House at Our Lady of Grace Church, 2201 West Market St. All those interested in the charismatic way of life are invited to attend. For more information, call Ben D’Apollo at (336) 812-3730 or Lorraine Brown (336) 292-5186. GREENSBORO — The health care ministry at St. Pius X Church, 2210 North Elm St., is teaming up with the National Alliance on Mental Illness to offer a 12-week course for family and/or
July 5 (3 p.m.) Mass for U.S. military personnel St. Patrick Cathedral, Charlotte July 8 (7 p.m.) Mass for Knights of Columbus Basilica of St. Lawrence, Asheville
tried to help people face the world’s social, political and economic challenges with the power of the Gospel. Pope Benedict XVI announced June 29 that he had signed his first formal contribution to the list of papal encyclical letters on social themes and that it was titled “Caritas in Veritate” (“Love in Truth”). Although dated June 29, the letter was expected to be released July 7. The pope said his letter would look at modern problems in the field of promoting development, and he asked for prayers for “this latest contribution that the church offers humanity in its commitment for sustainable progress in full respect for human dignity and the real needs of all.” Instead of focusing on theological
shape the way Christians and all people of good will can better serve the common good. Each social encyclical was unique in that it sought to respond to the most pressing social realities at the time. Anticipating his first social encyclical, Pope Benedict said it would offer “a beautiful response” to the new realities and changes that had occurred since “Centesimus Annus” was promulgated 18 years ago. Pope Benedict also said the publication of the document was delayed by the eruption of one of the worst global economic crises in decades. He said he wanted to update what he had drafted so the document would deal thoroughly with the current crisis and offer “a more adequate response” to the world’s financial woes.
Palliums from the pope
SALISBURY VICARIATE MOORESVILLE — Are you interested in learning about your Irish heritage? The Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians welcome all women who are practicing Roman Catholics, and who are Irish by birth or descent, or who are the wife of a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians or the mother of a junior member. A new division is starting in the Huntersville, Denver and Mooresville areas. To learn more, contact Janice Donahue at (704) 249-9161 after 7 p.m. weekdays or e-mail email@example.com. WINSTON-SALEM VICARIATE CLEMMONS — A Charismatic Prayer Group meets Mondays at 7:15 p.m. in the eucharistic chapel of Holy Family Church, 4820 Kinnamon Rd. Join us for praise music, witness, teaching, prayers and petition. For more details, call Jim Passero at (336) 998-7503.
Is your parish or school sponsoring a free event open to the general public? Deadline for all submissions for the Diocesan Planner is 10 days prior to desired publication date. Submit in writing to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax to (704) 370-3382.
Bishop Peter J. Jugis will participate in the following events: July 9 (6:30 p.m.) Pastor installation of Father Frank Seabo St. Joan of Arc Church, Candler July 11 (5 p.m.) Mass for 75th anniversary of Our Lady of the Annunciation Church Albemarle
CNS photo by Tony Gentile, Reuters
Pope Benedict XVI embraces U.S. Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron of Detroit after presenting him with a pallium on the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul in St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican June 29. The pope bestowed the pallium on 34 archbishops from 20 countries. The woolen band worn around the shoulders is a sign of the archbishops’ authority and responsibility as shepherds.
Catholic Common Ground Initiative honors Sister Carol Keehan WASHINGTON (CNS) — The Catholic Common Ground Initiative presented its annual Cardinal Joseph Bernardin Award June 26 to Sister Carol Keehan, a Daughter of Charity who is president and CEO of the Catholic Health Association. Sister Keehan was selected because of “her extraordinary contributions to creating common ground between c h u r c h l e a d e r s a nd government officials, organized labor and Catholic health care providers, the rich and
the poor,” according to the citation presented to her in a brief ceremony at The Catholic University of America in Washington. It praised Sister Keehan for her efforts to achieve national health care reform and for her work on a recent document by representatives of Catholic health care, the labor movement and the U.S. bishops’ conference setting principles designed to ensure a fair process as health care workers decide whether to join a union.
NOTICE TO READERS The Catholic News & Herald is currently on its fortnightly publishing schedule through August. The next issue will be July 17.
4 The Catholic News & Herald
Beacon of hope
AROUND THE DIOCESE
July 3, 2009
Mary Long (right), president of Columbiettes Bishop Greco 9499, presents a $1,000 check to Cindy Pickles, support group leader at Julian’s Beacon, during a meeting at Holy Family Church in Clemmons June 8. Julian’s Beacon provides assistance to patients with pulmonary hypertension, a rare blood vessel disorder of the lung in which the pressure of the pulmonary artery rises above normal levels and becomes life threatening. The Columbiettes is the women’s auxiliary group of the Knights of Columbus.
Above: Msgr. Richard Bellow, pastor of St. Mark Church in Huntersville, incenses a monstrance during a Corpus Christi celebration on the feast of the Body and Blood of Christ June 14. Also pictured are Deacon Louis
Pais and members of the Knights of Columbus. The celebration included a eucharistic procession (pictured below) to three outdoor altars, Bible readings and prayers.
Father Tim Reid, pastor of St. Ann Church in Charlotte, stands with members of Knights of Columbus Council 770 who presented an award to Jack Romero (center), a kindergarten student at St. Ann School and a divisional winner of the Knights’ poster contest, at the church May 8. Council 770 sponsored the local contest, themed “What Does Baby Jesus Mean to Me?” and part of the Knights of Columbus national poster contest for preschool and elementary school students, for students of St. Ann and St. Patrick schools in Charlotte. Jack received a plaque, a children’s Bible and a gift certificate to a local book store. Also pictured are Jack’s parents, John (left) and Tracy Romero, and his sister Paige.
Bruce Baden, Stewart Blanton, Larry Jobe and Bill Ronemus are the winners of the annual golf tournament held at the Maple Leaf Golf Club June 6 and sponsored by Knights of Columbus Council 8509 of Holy Cross Church in Kernersville. More than 70 players participated in the tournament, which raised $4,520 for the Knights’ Operation L.A.M.B. to assist individuals with mental retardation.
July 3, 2009
from the cover
The Catholic News & Herald 5
Liturgy, immigration, marriage among issues at USCCB meeting BISHOPS, from page 1
from the bishops in San Antonio were a Spanish-language Lectionary and a Mass in Thanksgiving for the Gift of Human Life. The Mass for life, first proposed nearly 20 years ago by Cardinal John J. O’Connor of New York, passed by a 183-2 vote, with three abstentions. The Spanish-language Lectionary was approved on a 181-2 vote, also with three abstentions. Both now go to the Vatican for confirmation. But five sections of the Roman Missal being prepared for use in Englishspeaking countries failed to get the necessary two-thirds vote of the Latinrite U.S. bishops during the meeting. With 244 Latin-rite bishops in the United States eligible to vote on the questions, the required two-thirds was 163. With 189 eligible bishops attending the meeting, only 134 voted to accept the first section, Masses and prayers for various needs and intentions. On four subsequent translations, the votes also failed to reach two-thirds, meaning the 55 bishops not present will
be polled by mail on all five parts. That process is expected to take several weeks. The items that failed to pass contain the Order of the Mass II; prefaces for various occasions; votive Masses and Masses for the dead; solemn blessings for the end of Mass; prayers over the people; and eucharistic prayers for particular occasions, such as for evangelization or ordinations. On immigration reform, Cardinal Francis E. George of Chicago wrote on behalf of the full U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to urge President Barack Obama and Congress to enact comprehensive reform before the end of 2009. “It has been clear for years that the United States immigration system requires repair and that reform legislation should not be delayed,” said the USCCB president in a prepared statement. “I would ask President Barack Obama and congressional leaders of both parties to work together to fashion and enact comprehensive immigration reform legislation before the end of the year,” he said. He also urged “respect and observance of all just laws” and said the bishops “do not approve or encourage the illegal entry of anyone into our country.” Minding marriage Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz, of Louisville, Ky., chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee on Defense of Marriage, reported to his fellow bishops about the challenges in meeting their priority focus on marriage, especially the quick rate at which states and courts have been taking up legislation that legalizes same-sex marriage or prohibits it. Six states now recognize marriage between same-sex couples, Archbishop Kurtz said, and others are considering the same type of laws or a range of others “allowing everything but marriage,” that would give new legal rights to civil unions. He said the key points that the ad hoc committee is focusing on to support marriage are: — That marriage is inherently
CNS photo by Bahram Mark Sobhani
Bishops take part in the mid-afternoon prayer to begin the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ spring meeting in San Antonio, Texas, June 17. related to sexual differences and the complementarity of men and women. — That marriage is for the good of children, who are themselves “a great good of marriage.” — That marriage is a unique bond reserved to men and women by nature. — That same-sex marriage has negative effects on religious rights. The bishops also heard brief reports from their conference vice president, Bishop Gerald F. Kicanas of Tucson, Ariz., about their other four priorities: faith formation and sacramental practice; the life and dignity of the human person; cultural diversity in the church; and promoting vocations to the priesthood and religious life. Other actions In other actions, the bishops in a 135-2 vote approved a recommendation from their Committee on Budget and Finance to keep the 2010 assessment on dioceses to fund the work of the USCCB at the 2009 level of just over $10 million. The vote was open only to bishops who head dioceses. But Archbishop Kurtz, chairman of the committee, warned that he would probably be asking for an increase for 2011 when that assessment comes up at the bishops’ November meeting in Baltimore. The assessments are
calculated for each diocese based on a formula that includes offertory income, registered households and contributions to three national collections. The bishops also approved funding of $450,000 for the New York-based John Jay College of Criminal Justice to complete a study of the causes and context of clergy sex abuse of minors. Commissioned by the bishops in the 2002 “Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People,” the study is expected to be completed by December 2010. During their executive session, the U.S. bishops expressed “appreciation and support” for Bishop D’Arcy especially for “his pastoral concern” for the University of Notre Dame. In a two-sentence statement made public June 22 in Washington, the bishops also affirmed Bishop D’Arcy’s “solicitude for (Notre Dame’s) Catholic identity and his loving care for all those the Lord has given him to sanctify, to teach and to shepherd.” The statement made no direct reference to the controversy over the university’s decision to have Obama as commencement speaker May 17 or to a recent call by the board of directors of the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities for the bishops to revisit their 2004 statement, “Catholics in Political Life.”
6 The Catholic News & Herald
FROM THE COVER
July 3, 2009
At end of jubilee year, figure of St. Paul clearer PAULINE, from page 1
Vatican officials declared the jubilee year a success. “The result has been positive, even beyond the most optimistic predictions,” Cardinal Andrea Cordero Lanza di Montezemolo, archpriest of the Basilica of St. Paul’s Outside the Walls, said at a Vatican press conference June 26. At the Pauline basilica, which had often been overlooked by pilgrims to Rome, overflow crowds came to visit and pray at the tomb of the Apostle, the cardinal said. Thanks to some architectural finessing, a portion of the tomb, a roughhewn marble sarcophagus buried beneath the main altar, was for the first time made visible to visitors. It was Pope Benedict who almost single-handedly gave the jubilee its content. In weekly talks, homilies and liturgical celebrations, he sketched a detailed portrait of the man considered the model of Christian conversion and the archetypal missionary. St. Paul was the most prolific of the early Apostles, the man who took the Gospel of Christ into the world of nonJews and helped set the church on a more universal path. The pope’s main point was that this evangelizing spirit based on personal conversion needs to be rekindled among today’s 1.1 billion Catholics. “Dear brothers and sisters, as in early times, today too Christ needs apostles ready to sacrifice themselves. He needs witnesses and martyrs like St. Paul,” the pope said when he proclaimed the jubilee. As the year progressed, the pope found a “St. Paul angle” for his talks
to bishops, religious orders, university students and his own Roman Curia. He had plenty of material to draw upon: St. Paul’s 14 letters represent nearly half of the New Testament. On Pope Benedict’s foreign trips, St. Paul came along. In Paris last year, as the global financial crisis worsened, the pope recalled St. Paul’s preaching against idolatry and greed, and asked whether it wasn’t relevant today: “Have not money, the thirst for possessions, for power and even knowledge, diverted man from his true identity?” The pope’s annual message for the World Day for Migrants and Refugees featured St. Paul as a “migrant by vocation” and an ambassador-at-large for Christ. In talks to bishops from Asia, the pope suggested they try to learn from St. Paul’s ability to evangelize in cultures that are new to Christianity, presenting the Gospel in ways that resonate with the traditional spiritual wisdom of their continent. Citing the Apostle’s missionary courage, he told a group of newly appointed bishops to imitate St. Paul’s persistence in the face of personal mistreatment and dangers. Prayers and unity P op e B e n e d i c t a l s o a p p l i e d the saint’s lessons to contemporary rivalries and controversies within the church community. In early 2009, during debate over several of his own decisions in the church, the pope quoted St. Paul’s admonition to Galatian Christians not to “go on biting and devouring one another.” St. Paul understood that church unity was the primary requisite for a credible witness of the Gospel in the world, he said. He struck a similar theme at the ecumenical vespers service Jan. 25, the
Closing Pauline year, pope reveals results of tests on apostle’s tomb ROME (CNS) — Closing the year of St. Paul, Pope Benedict XVI announced that tests done on the presumed tomb of the apostle revealed the presence of bone fragments from a human who lived during the first and second centuries. “This seems to confirm the unanimous and uncontested tradition that they are the mortal remains of the Apostle Paul,” the pope said during an evening prayer service June 28 at Rome’s Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls. The basilica has long been held to be the burial site of St. Paul, but because of the destruction and rebuilding of the basilica, the tomb’s exact location was unknown for centuries.
Vatican officials announced in December 2006 that several feet below the basilica’s main altar and behind a smaller altar, they had found a roughly cut marble sarcophagus beneath an inscription that reads: “Paul Apostle Martyr.” Because part of the sarcophagus is buried beneath building material, Vatican officials determined they could not dig it out to open and examine the contents. It was decided, Pope Benedict said, to drill “very tiny perforation” into the marble so that a small probe could be inserted in order to withdraw fragments, which underwent carbon-14 analysis.
CNS photo by Khaled al-Hariri, Reuters
Nuns light candles in front of a sculpture of St. Paul on the wall of St. Paul’s Church in Damascus, Syria, June 29, 2008. feast of the conversion of St. Paul. That liturgy marked the close of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, and the pope was joined by Orthodox, Protestant and Anglican representatives in the Basilica of St. Paul’s Outside the Walls. In his homily, the pope emphasized St. Paul’s message that without internal unity, Christians cannot bring peace and reconciliation to the ruptured societies across the globe. Pilgrims who came to Rome enjoyed a special itinerary of nine sites linked to the life of St. Paul, including ancient churches built on sites where the Apostle resided, the Mamertine Prison where he was incarcerated by Roman authorities, and the Abbey of the Three Fountains where he was beheaded on the order of the Emperor Nero. A plenary indulgence, the remission of temporal punishment due to sin, was
offered for pilgrims who crossed the threshold of the “Pauline Doors,” prayed at the tomb of St. Paul, confessed their sins, received the Eucharist and prayed for the pope’s intentions. It was also offered to Catholics participating in local events marking the jubilee year. A series of concerts was offered in the Basilica of St. Paul throughout the year. Cardinal Cordero Lanza di Montezemolo said that when he broached the idea to Pope Benedict, to make sure there was no objection, the music-loving pope simply replied: “Are you inviting me?” The cardinal said it was decided that at the ceremonial closing of the Pauline year, the “Pauline flame” that has burned in the basilica during the past 12 months would be kept lit, to symbolically keep alive “all that has been positive during this year.”
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The Catholic News & Herald 7
Apostolate uses ads to promote, defend life ADS, from page 1
apostolate that creates and airs national television and radio commercials. The mission of Virtue Media is three-fold: first, to help save unborn babies from abortion; second, to offer hope and healing to post-abortive parents; and third, to educate the public about the sanctity of life. By harnessing the potential of media to educate and inform the general public, Virtue Media has tapped into an expansive resource that allows for the spreading of positive messages in the media market. The ads were first introduced in the Charlotte market in 2006 after Msgr. Richard Bellow, pastor of St. Mark Church in Huntersville, asked Tom Peterson, founder and president of Virtue Media, to speak at the parish. With financial support from St. Mark Church, Virtue Media then partnered with North Carolina Right to Life, Inc. to launch a pro-life ad campaign called “Heart to Heart.” Real results Using pro-life television ads from Virtue Media, the campaign, which was an ecumenical effort between Catholic and non-Catholic churches in the community, was aimed at reducing the number of abortions in the Charlotte area. The ads first ran on major networks and cable stations from December 26, 2006 to March 25, 2007 and again during June, July, August and October of 2007. According to North Carolina Right to Life, Inc., in 2007 there were nearly 1,900 fewer abortions in the Charlotte area than in 2006. In August 2008, Bishop Peter J. Jugis sent a letter to pastors encouraging their support of the campaign.
“Television is the most effective and influential vehicle we have to touch minds and hearts in society,” said Bishop Jugis in the letter. “The ads are positive messages which encourage people to choose life over abortion, and offer hope and healing to parents after abortion.” Within the past year several parishes in the Diocese of Charlotte have supported the campaign through either parish tithes or voluntary contributions from parishioners. Vi r t u e M e d i a o ff e r s c h u r c h presentation materials, including DVDs of the ads, to parishes that are interested in generating support.
Screen capture courtesy of Virtue Media
How they work At the end of each ad a number is provided for Option Line, a call center in Columbus, Ohio, which is run by CareNet pregnancy centers and staffed 24 hours a day by Christian groups. At Option Line, callers are directed to local pregnancy help centers where they can receive counseling. In Charlotte, callers are directed to the Pregnancy Resource Center. When Virtue Media television ads air nationally, approximately 22,000 women contact the pregnancy call line a month, according to Peterson. He attributes such high numbers to the utilization of television as the most effective way to reach people. “We’re showing up where these women are,” said Peterson. “When you put a powerful creative message out there, when and where they are watching, they will respond.”
Above is a screen capture of one of Virtue Media’s pro-life television ads. When Virtue Media ads air on national television stations, approximately 22,000 women contact the pregnancy help center a month, according to founder Tom Peterson.
A powerful message One of those powerful messages comes directly from Norma McCorvey, better known as Jane Roe, the plaintiff in the Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion in 1973. In the ad, McCorvey, a convert to Catholicism, refers to the court case as “the biggest mistake of my life.” Now she is dedicating her life to
Catholic presence strong at National Right to Life convention
spreading the truth about preserving the sanctity of human life. “We have powerful national figures who are blessing us and our church with the truth,” said Peterson, referring to Virtue Media ads featuring McCorvey and Dr. Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. “It’s powerful coming right from them,” he said. What’s next? Peterson has started a second Catholic media apostolate called Catholics Come Home, which he hopes will further the mission of Virtue Media. Although these ads are focused primarily on bringing wayward Catholics
CHARLOTTE (CNS) — A Catholic congressman, the founder of Priests for Life and a leading priest-ethicist were among the speakers and workshop presenters at the National Right to Life convention June 18-20 in Charlotte. The convention, with the theme “Stop the Abortion Agenda,” drew nearly 1,000 participants from 48 states and covered a wide range of topics affecting human life, including concerns raised by a proposed national health reform. F a t h e r Ta d e u s z P a c h o l c z y k , director of education for the National Catholic Bioethics Center, kicked off the convention with a presentation on “The Science and Ethics of Stem Cells and Cloning.” “There are seductive arguments regarding embryonic stem cell research, like ‘These embryos are all going to be thrown away anyway,’ but can we ever throw away another human being? This is not how we treat one another,” he said. There have been no medical cures or therapies yet using human embryonic stem cells, while there are a myriad of cures and therapies using the ethically obtained adult stem cells. Failing to emphasize this key
back to the church, Peterson believes that by bringing more Catholics home, the pro-life movement within the church will be strengthened. “The ultimate solution to stopping abortion is to have more hearts centered on Christ and more people active in their Catholic parishes,” he said. “Research has shown that if people are centered on Christ and active in their churches, they will support prolife issues,” he said. “Once somebody is grounded in faith, they can be formed in virtue.” WANT MORE INFO? To find out more about Virtue Media, visit www.virtuemedia.org.
distinction to the general public is “unjust,” according to Father Pacholczyk, who said the importance of keeping ethics in modern science cannot be overstated. Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life was part of a panel discussion on “The Church, the Media and the State.” Calling the media an informationeating machine, he challenged his audience to get educated, write stories and be available to share the truth with the media so they can do their job in challenging the state. In the second panel titled “We Are the Sheep ... Where Are the Shepherds,” Father Pavone joined pro-life leaders from several large Christian denominations, each with unique challenges promoting the sanctity of life in each particular faith community. He said that nowhere in the mission of the church in the modern world is the power of authentic Christian unity expressing itself more visibly, powerfully and practically than in the pro-life work. Among the other topics addressed at the convention were U.S. funding of domestic and international abortions and the suppression of research regarding the harmful effects of abortion.
8 The Catholic News & Herald
youths in action
Sharing hope and respect College students serve overnight shift at homeless shelter by
KATIE MOORE staff writer
WINSTON-SALEM — Eight students from Wake Forest University’s Catholic Campus Ministry recently spent the night at a local homeless shelter. It was a service project that brought them outside of their comfort zones and gave them a glimpse into the lives of those less fortunate. The students served at Samaritan Inn located in downtown Winston-Salem June 25-26. Their duties included serving dinner, taking turns watching surveillance monitors throughout the night and helping to prepare breakfast in the morning. In between their chores they spent time getting to know the men in the shelter. “I was really unsure of what this undertaking would be like,” said Nikki Garcia, a senior, who had done some previous volunteer work at shelters but had never spent the night. “Overall, it was a really great experience to reach out to people who may not see their own worth some days,” said Garcia. After dinner the students cleaned the kitchen, mopped the floors and spent
Catholic Scout earns Eagle rank
Brian Mark Hilgert, 16, a parishioner of Holy Spirit Church in Denver and a member of Boy Scout Troop 80, recently achieved Eagle Scout, the highest rank in Boy Scouts. Father Carmen Malacari, pastor; Deacon James Atkinson; and Knights of Columbus joined Brian’s family and friends for the court of honor ceremony at the church May 30. Brian’s Eagle project involved designing and building a children’s memorial garden outside the church. Located near the parish activity center, the two-tier garden includes a variety of plants and flowers as well as a statue of Jesus, a bird bath and stone animal sculptures. In Troop 80, Brian has held the offices of senior patrol leader, assistant patrol leader and instructor. He plans to continue to assist and lead the troop activities alongside his father and troop leader, Art Hilgert, who is also an Eagle Scout.
time talking to the men. “We got to attend the evening devotional service, during which one of the men told us about his life and read Scripture passages,” said Rachel Fedders, a sophomore. “Afterwards, other guests spoke out about their hardships and how the shelter had helped them to find hope,” she said. Hearing the stories gave the students a first-hand look into the personal struggles of people in their community. “Often during times of economic hardship, it is difficult for the fortunate to
“I think that it is important for those who have been blessed to take a step back ... and lend some aid in whatever manner possible.” — Michael Montoya see just how lucky they have been,” said student Michael Montoya. “I think that it is important for those
July 3, 2009
who have been blessed to take a step back, realize that the down and out have had some bad luck, and lend some aid in whatever manner possible,” he said. Serving in the shelter also helped the students realize that even a small gesture can make a difference to a person who is struggling. “As our campus minister told us, we don’t have to be able to offer deep words of encouragement or know just the right thing to do or say to be able to help these people out,” said Fedders. “Just by smiling and treating them with respect, we can help them remember that they are deserving of respect.” The students are planning to serve at the shelter again this summer. Contact Staff Writer Katie Moore by calling (704) 370-3354, or e-mail email@example.com.
July 3, 2009
The Catholic News & Herald 9
youths in action
Church starts ministry for high school athletes ATHLETES, from page 1
organization’s Web site, the goal of CAC is to provide an integrated network of sports-oriented clergy and lay people to serve Catholic athletes, coaches and staff in the practice of their faith. It also will allow them to utilize the unique platform given to them to reach the world for Jesus Christ and his church. At St. Mark Church, Father Patrick Hoare, parochial vicar, and Jean Whelan, parishioner, decided to implement the group as another way for teens to get involved at the parish. The ministry was formed last summer as an alternative to the Life Teen youth group. Life Teen has been very successful, but Father Hoare and Whelan felt that there were youths at the parish who still were not being served. “We wanted another ministry for teens,” said Whelan. “It is a different door to enter your faith.” Through prayer and research, they came across the CAC Web site. After contacting the organization, they received permission to use the existing college formula, which they tailored to meet the needs of the high school athletes. “For many high school students, athletics is an important part of the high school experience,” said Father Hoare. With CAC “we are taking something they love and tying it in with faith.” The group meets every other Wednesday during the summer. Their meetings begin and end with prayer and always include an athletic activity followed by a faith-sharing talk. At the kick-off meeting, the youths were divided into groups to play indoor and outdoor basketball and ultimate
Photo by Katie Moore
Members of Catholic Athletes for Christ play ultimate Frisbee during the organization’s summer kick-off event at St. Mark Church in Huntersville June 10. Frisbee. After the games they had a cookout followed with a talk by Charlotte Catholic High School athletic director Kevin Christmas. “I really am impressed with this group,” said Christmas, who said he was inspired by the fellowship he saw among the athletes. The group at St. Mark Church is the first high school division of CAC in the country. The national program hopes to use the group as a model for other high schools and churches around the country. At each meeting, approximately 12 adult facilitators are on hand to supervise the activities. “They are former athletes who love their faith,” said Whelan. In terms of youth involvement, leadership opportunities are available in the form of a teen advisory board.
The board, made up of rising high school juniors and seniors, attends all of the planning meetings and offers suggestions relating to the development of the program. “They tell us what’s working,” said Whelan, who also mentioned that it was members of the teen advisory board who suggested that the group devote one of their meetings to eucharistic adoration. “We focus on the virtues but also on eucharistic presence,” said Whelan. “The mission is bringing Christ into your sport and showing him to others as you play your sport.” Whelan’s daughter, Mary Kathryn, is a rising senior at Charlotte Catholic High School and a member of the CAC teen advisory board. She said the benefits of CAC vary for each of the members. “Hopefully they get fitness, but also learn lessons about how to deal with stuff in high school and
life in general,” she said. A member of the Charlotte Catholic High School women’s soccer team, Mary Kathryn also said that CAC has helped her approach soccer with a more charitable attitude. “Sometimes when I’m playing soccer I get aggravated and want to do things that are not very Christian-like,” she said. “This just helps me remember that we have got to stay in our faith.” Christmas talked to the athletes about the importance of finding time for God each day, something he does by attending daily Mass. “If we can’t give 20 minutes of our day to God then there is something wrong in our lives,” he said. His advice to the athletes: “Believe in yourself, believe in your faith and I don’t think you have anything to worry about.” WANT MORE INFO? Visit Catholic Athletes for Christ online at www.catholicathletesforchrist.com.
Summer swing Photo by Katie Moore
Members of Catholic Athletes for Christ play basketball during the activity portion of their meeting at St. Mark Church in Huntersville June 10. All CAC meetings begin and end with prayer and include some sort of athletic activity followed by a faith-sharing talk.
The Groce family and staff acknowledge with appreciation the compassionate care Fr. John M. Pagel provided in his ministry to bereaved families of St. Joan of Arc Parish. Fr. Pagel, we wish you well.
Courtesy Photo by Greg Briley
Katie Carter (left) and Kimberly Jones (center) dance with Hannah Roy (right), a graduate of Charlotte Catholic High School and a camp group leader, during an event at Camp SOAR (Special Olympics Athletic Retreat) at the Levine Jewish Community Center in Charlotte June 19. Nearly 300 athletes with disabilities and 200 volunteers took part in the ninth annual camp June 15-19. The camp features sporting events including bocce, soccer, basketball, tennis and swimming, as well as arts and crafts, entertainment and bowling.
July 3, 2009
10 The Catholic News & Herald
A roundup of Scripture, readings, films and more
New book sees growing threats to Catholic health care, conscience by
NANCY FRAZIER O’BRIEN catholic news service
WASHINGTON — Catholic health care faces cultural, legal, economic and political challenges that may lead to the end of its distinctively Catholic mission in the not-too-distant future, a Catholic law professor writes in a new book. “ I s s u e s r e l a t e d t o w o m e n ’s reproductive rights may provide the most difficult challenges to the ongoing struggles by the sponsors of (Catholic) hospitals in terms of preserving their Catholic identity,” says Leonard Nelson III in “Diagnosis Critical: The Urgent Threats Confronting Catholic Healthcare,” published in June. Nelson, an affiliated scholar with the Birmingham School of Public Health at the University of Alabama, sees the future of Catholic health care in free clinics; specialized centers focusing on natural family planning and other church-approved reproductive medicine; and hospice care for the dying. “They may need to move out of the hospital setting” to aspects of medical care that are “not subject to extensive government oversight,” Nelson told Catholic News Service in a May 28 interview. But the president and CEO of the Catholic Health Association sees no coming retreat from Catholic health care as we know it today, calling Nelson’s book “really a very old thesis that reappears every five to 10 years.” “We have no reason to think we will or should close,” said Sister Carol Keehan, a Daughter of Charity, in an e-mail to CNS. “We will keep conscience protection and we will continue to be a major presence in the health care of this nation.” Sister Keehan also said that “people who have not been in Catholic health care and have no knowledge of what it has meant in the lives of so many are too willing to give it up. It is a treasure, and the care of the sick is a sign of the kingdom, and we intend to be here being that sign.” Nelson, a member of St. Paul’s Cathedral in Birmingham, sees a sort of Catch-22 in efforts to defend the Catholic identity of hospitals from moves to dilute conscience protections in those institutions. “Catholic institutions could bolster their claim to statutory, if not constitutional protection, from (laws that require them to act in violation of Catholic teaching) by becoming more pervasively Catholic,” he writes. “And if Catholic institutions are generally perceived to be serious about their Catholic identity, it may be easier to argue for legislative exemption from such laws.” “On the other hand, emphasizing the distinctive mission of Catholic hospitals may strengthen claims that public funding should be denied because of
the sectarian nature of these hospitals,” Nelson adds. In the CNS interview, he cited a variety of reasons for what he sees as the current dire state of Catholic health care. Among them are a lack of vocations leading to a switch in leadership of Catholic hospitals from women religious to laypeople, some of whom are not Catholics; the societal trend toward viewing abortion as a “right” that should not be affected by the beliefs of others; and the economic stresses that force Catholic hospitals into “all sorts of joint ventures and mergers” to maintain financial viability. But the greatest threat might come from the concerted effort by groups that promote or provide abortions to “mainstream abortion” by making it part of every health plan and available at every hospital, Nelson said. “It’s going to be constant. I don’t believe FOCA (the Freedom of Choice Act) will pass. It will be more incremental, more subtle, but we will end up in the same place.” FOCA, which would wipe out many existing state laws and impede states’ ability to regulate abortion, has not yet been introduced in the current Congress. President Barack Obama has stated it is not a high legislative priority for him. In the near future, “insurance plans will all have to cover abortion and the full range of reproductive services, so Catholics will be paying for it that way,” Nelson said. Nelson blamed some Catholic politicians for advancing the view that it is OK to be Catholic and to support keeping abortion legal and said some bishops have not been sufficiently willing to denounce that view. “‘Pro-choice’ Catholic politicians threaten the continued existence of Catholic health care because they provide political cover and legitimacy to efforts to impose mandates on Catholic health care institutions to provide services in violation of the ERDs,” Nelson writes. The “ERDs” are the “Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services,” which guide Catholic health care facilities in addressing a wide range of ethical questions. Nelson said he has been writing “Diagnosis Critical” for four or five years but has been interested in Catholic health care since he worked for a law firm 30 years ago that provided legal services to a Catholic hospital system.
WORD TO LIFE
Sunday Scripture Readings: July 12, 2009
July 12, Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle B Readings: 1) Amos 7:12-15 Psalm 85:9-14 2) Ephesians 1:3-14 Gospel: Mark 6:7-13
Sharing God’s love often difficult by JEFF HEDGLEN catholic news service
I recently started a new quest. It is a rather simple thing: I want to say “hi” to people when we pass each other on the sidewalk or grocery story aisle. I’m tired of walking by people and neither one of us acknowledging the other’s existence. So far it has not gone well. Most of the time people either give me a strange look or ignore me completely. Every once in awhile someone will look at me, smile and say “hello” back to me. I don’t know why this is such a hard thing for people to do, but I feel compelled to continue this mission. My little “say hi” campaign is nothing compared to the quests we hear about in this Sunday’s readings, though the results are similar. Amos is called to be a prophet for the Lord. But not only is he not welcomed by the people to whom he gives God’s
word, he is asked to leave. He complains, “I was no prophet, ... I was a shepherd and a dresser of sycamores,” as if to say, “I never asked for this job, I liked my old job; no one ever ridiculed me there.” In the Gospel, Jesus sends the Twelve Apostles out, two by two, on a missionary journey. They are to preach repentance, heal the sick and drive out demons. Jesus must have anticipated that they would not always be welcomed, so he gives them this instruction: “Whatever place does not welcome you or listen to you, leave there and shake the dust off your feet in testimony against them.” Following the Lord and bringing his message of love to the world is seldom easy. Like Amos and the apostles, we will not always be welcomed with open arms. But our motivation does not have to come from people responding to our mission. St. Paul reminds us that we who hope in Christ, “exist for the praise of his glory.” Bringing glory to God is success enough. We accomplish this when we spread the love God has given us with all we meet, even if it is just in passing. Questions: What are some ways you try to share the love of God with others? Have you ever been rejected when trying to live your faith? Scripture to be Illustrated: “Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two” (Mark 6:7).
WEEKLY SCRIPTURE Scripture for the week of July 5-11
Sunday (Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time), Ezekiel 2:2-5, 2 Corinthians 12:7-10, Mark 6:1-6; Monday (St. Maria Goretti), Genesis 28:10-22, Matthew 9:18-26; Tuesday, Genesis 32:23-33, Matthew 9:32-38; Wednesday, Genesis 41:55-57; 42:5-7, 17-24, Matthew 10:1-7; Thursday (St. Augustine Zhao Rong and Companions), Genesis 44:18-21, 23-29; 45:1-5, Matthew 10:7-15; Friday, Genesis 46:1-7, 28-30, Matthew 10:16-23; Saturday (St. Benedict), Genesis 49:29-32; 50:15-26, Matthew 10:24-33.
Scripture for the week of July 12-18
Sunday (Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time), Amos 7:12-15, Ephesians 1:3-14, Mark 6:7-13; Monday (St. Henry), Exodus 1:8-14,22, Matthew 10:34--11:1; Tuesday (Bl. Kateri Tekakwitha), Exodus 2:1-15, Matthew 11:20-24; Wednesday (St. Bonaventure), Exodus 3:1-6, 9-12, Matthew 11:25-27; Thursday (Our Lady of Mount Carmel), Exodus 3:13-20, Matthew 11:28-30; Friday, Exodus 11:10-12:14, Matthew 12:1-8; Saturday (St. Camillus de Lellis), Exodus 12:37-42, Matthew 12:14-21.
Scripture for the week of July 19-25
Sunday (Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time), Jeremiah 23:1-6, Ephesians 2:13-18, Mark 6:30-34; Monday (St. Apollinaris), Exodus 14:5-18 Exodus 15:1-6, Matthew 12:38-42; Tuesday (St. Lawrence of Brindisi), Exodus 14:21-15:1, Exodus 15:8-10, 12, 17, Matthew 12:46-50; Wednesday (St. Mary Magdalene), Exodus 16:1-5, 9-15, John 20:1-2, 11-18; Thursday (St. Bridget of Sweden), Exodus 19:1-2, 9-11, 16-20, Daniel 3:52-56, Matthew 13:10-17; Friday (St. Sharbel Makhluf), Exodus 20:1-17, Matthew 13:18-23; Saturday (St. James), 2 Corinthians 4:7-15, Matthew 20:20-28.
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July 3, 2009
Ed McMahon, a Catholic University alumnus, dead at 86 by CHAZ MUTH catholic news service
WASHINGTON — Known to millions for his trademark “Heeere’s Johnny” introduction as the longtime sidekick to Johnny Carson on “The Tonight Show,” entertainer and Catholic University of America alumnus Ed McMahon died early June 23 in Los Angeles at 86. The Detroit native, who was raised Catholic, died shortly after midnight at the Ronald Reagan/UCLA Medical Center. No cause of death has been released, but in the past few years McMahon had endured a number of health problems, including a 2007 neck injury, and had a highly publicized hospitalization for pneumonia last winter. Though the entertainer publicly acknowledged recent financial difficulties that nearly forced him out of his lavish Beverly Hills home in 2008, he had been generous throughout the years with his time and money for Catholic institutions, including a scholarship endowment for Catholic University and serving as its alumni association’s national president from 1967 to 1971. McMahon’s celebrity status added excitement to alumni events, especially homecoming, said Marion Gosney, alumni relations director at Catholic University. “Ed helped strengthen the alumni
CNS photo courtesy of CUA archives
Ed McMahon speaks at The Catholic University of America’s Hartke Theater groundbreaking ceremony in 1967.
association with his big personality,” Gosney said. “He brought people together and was a loyal alumnus.” McMahon received a bachelor’s degree in drama from the Washington school in 1949 and was awarded an honorary doctor of communication arts degree in 1988. “Catholic University has lost one of its most renowned alumni with the passing of Ed McMahon,” Vincentian Father David O’Connell, president of the school, said. “He took such great pride in his alma mater and rarely missed an opportunity to speak positively about his time here in various interviews and books.” Edward Leo Peter McMahon Jr. was born in Detroit, attended the Jesuit-run Boston College, and served in the military as a test pilot during World War II before enrolling at Catholic University. While enrolled at Catholic University under the GI Bill, McMahon studied under Dominican Father Gilbert V. Hartke — who created the drama department at the school — and later led the campaign to raise funds to build a theater on campus in the priest’s name. “Ed was devoted to ... Father Hartke, only to follow in his footsteps to legend status. ‘I owe so much to CU,’ McMahon told me at Bob Hope’s funeral a few years ago,” Father O’Connell said. “That’s where my career got its start,” he told the priest. After stints on radio, McMahon shifted his attention to television in Philadelphia, and in the 1950s began appearing on a show called “Who Do You Trust?” hosted by Carson, and then accompanied the talk-show legend when he became the host of NBC’s “The Tonight Show” in 1962, where he remained until 1992, when Carson retired. McMahon’s other credits included serving as host of “Star Search” and “TV’s Bloopers and Practical Jokes.” In 1969 McMahon provided the narration for the Serra International Foundation’s film, “Generations of Influence,” produced to promote religious vocations. The longtime television personality is survived by his third wife, Pamela, and five of his six children. McMahon’s son, Michael, died in 1995.
Angel gets her wings Nun in Fawcett’s hometown recalls her as ‘first-grader with pigtails’ by PAULA J. BEATON catholic news service
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Sister Patrice Floyd remembers actress Farrah Fawcett as “a little first-grader with pigtails” at Christ the King School in Corpus Christ, Fawcett’s hometown. Fawcett, who first rose to fame starring on “Charlie’s Angels,” died in Los Angeles June 25 at age 62 after a three-year battle with cancer. A private funeral Mass was celebrated for her at Our Lady of the Angels Cathedral in Los Angeles June 30. A longtime educator, Sister Floyd, a Sister of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament, is a former principal of several Catholic schools in the Diocese of Corpus Christi. She said the Fawcett family lived across the street from Christ the King. Born Mary Farrah Leni Fawcett on Feb. 2, 1947, in Corpus Christi, Fawcett was attending the University of Texas in Austin when a movie publicist saw photos of her after she was named one of the 10 most beautiful people on campus, according to an AP story. The publicist suggested she consider a career in Hollywood and she took him up on it. After small parts in a couple of TV shows, she was cast on “Charlie’s Angels.” She remained with the show for just one year, but she became a pop icon in the 1970s. After leaving the show she starred in a few films that were panned by critics, but her starring role in the 1984 TV movie “The Burning Bed,” as a wife who is a victim of domestic abuse, earned her an Emmy nomination. About the same time she starred in a well-received off-Broadway play, “Extremities,” about a woman sexually assaulted in her own home. She played the same part in a 1986 film version.
CNS photo by Mike Blake, Reuters
Actress Farrah Fawcett looks up during a tribute to Aaron Spelling during the 58th annual Primetime Emmy Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles Aug. 27, 2006. Fawcett died June 25 after a long battle with cancer. She was 62. In 1973 she married actor Lee Majors, but they divorced nine years later. Since the 1980s she lived off and on with actor Ryan O’Neal, with whom she had one son, Redmond. The couple never married. Though she was raised a Catholic, her faith never seemed to be a topic of her interviews but as she battled cancer she spoke about praying to God and hoping for a miracle. In a documentary about her struggle that she produced and which aired on network television in May, she was often shown holding a rosary during her treatments. Before her death, news reports said a priest came to her hospital room and administered the church’s last rites. Sister Floyd said that when Farrah Fawcett and Majors were in town, they often came by the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament Convent to see two of the older sisters who taught Farrah in school. Both nuns have since died. The visits were always in the evening and Fawcett wore a disguise, Sister Floyd said. “The press would go wild when she was in town.” Many of the sisters knew the star, the nun said. Sister Collette Brehony, a Sister of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament who is now director of religious education at St. Gertrude Parish in Kingsville, had been her teacher at St. Patrick School. “She was shocked the first time she saw her on TV,” Sister Floyd said.
12 The Catholic News & Herald
July 3, 2009
around the diocese
Archival Anecdota For the month of July, here is a look at Our Lady of the Hills Camp in Hendersonville.
1934 — 2009
Augustinian Father Anthony J. Tomasulo Priest remembered for joy-filled attitude toward life, people
Campers ride horses at Our Lady of the Hills Camp in Hendersonville in this undated black-and-white photograph. Purchased in January 1956 from the Brandeis Youth Foundation, Our Lady of the Hills Camp consisted of 250 acres just south of Hendersonville. The site included Highland Lake, also known as Madonna Lake; an Olympic-size swimming pool; an open-air gymnasium; the historic Trenholm-Rhett homestead; and many other features. The property was originally part of a 1789 land grant to John Earle. It belonged to several prominent owners including George Trenholm, secretary of the Confederate Treasury, and William Aiken, former South Carolina governor. After being purchased by the Diocese of Raleigh, the property was renamed the Catholic Assembly Grounds of North Carolina. The diocese originally intended to use the property for retreats, family vacations, conferences and a summer camp. Later, the property was primarily associated with diocesan youth ministry and Our Lady of the Hills Camp. Some of the activities offered at the camp included archery, riflery, baseball, swimming, canoeing, dramatics, boxing and horseback riding. Part of the daily camp schedule included morning and evening prayer, Mass and rosary. Priests, religious orders, paid staff and volunteers all contributed to the daily operations of the camp. Two noteworthy staff members, Carmen and Dorothy Falcone, assisted in running the camp for nearly 30 years. Carmen Falcone worked at Duke University as an assistant professor in the physical education department and coached wrestling and football. His wife Dorothy was a dietician at Duke Hospital. With the aid of people like the Falcones, Our Lady of the Hills Camp made a positive impact on the surrounding community. Oct. 19, 1955: Raleigh Bishop Vincent S. Waters purchases land for the Catholic Assembly Grounds. June 10, 1956: Our Lady of the Hills Camp opens its doors for the first time. From its
inception, the camp was racially integrated, making it the first non-segregated camp in the area. June 14, 1956: Bishop Waters dedicates the Catholic Assembly Grounds. Summer 1958: Our Lady of the Hills Camp becomes co-institutional as both boys and girls attend the same camp sessions. Summer 1965: The camp introduces SCUBA diving as one of the activities. October 1978: The Diocese of Charlotte Youth Ministry office relocates to Our Lady of the Hills Camp. The camp “winterizes” the former infirmary building for year-round use by youth ministry. May 1985: The nationally-registered historic Trenholm-Rhett house is torn down due to deterioration. The antebellum homestead built in 1854 housed the camp chapel prior to destruction. Aug. 16, 1985: The camp’s closing ceremony concludes with Mass, a cookout and fireworks. The closure of the camp was a result of financial concerns. Aug. 22, 1985: The Catholic Assembly Grounds property is sold. 1985: Highland Lake Inn and Conference Center is established on the former Our Lady of the Hills Camp location. 1999: Highland Lake Inn re-opens under new ownership. Our Lady of the Hills statue still remains on site to this day.
CHARLOTTE — Augustinian Father Anthony Joseph Tomasulo, parochial vicar of St. John Neumann Church in Charlotte, died in his sleep June 11 during an Augustinian convocation in Illinois. He was 75. Father Tomasulo was born in Elizabeth, N.J., on May 5, 1934. He attended Villanova University in 1953, where he applied for entrance into the Order of St. Augustine. He was received as a novice in September 1955 and, after a year at Good Counsel Novitiate in New Hamburg, N.Y., he professed first vows Sept. 10, 1956. He then attended Augustinian College in Washington, D.C., for his theological studies. He professed solemn vows in 1959 and was ordained to the priesthood at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington June 3, 1961. He spent his first few years as an
educator before devoting his ministry to parish work. He served in parishes in New York, Pennsylvania and Florida before becoming parochial vicar of St. John Neumann Church in 2007. Father Tomasulo was diagnosed with a brain tumor in the 1960s. The operation to remove the tumor was successful and left him with an understanding that every day was a gift from God to be enjoyed, celebrated and shared with others. His appreciation for life gave him a joy-filled sense of humor and an affirming attitude toward every person or situation he encountered. Father Tomasulo often said his greatest loves were his family, life and experiences of brotherhood as an Augustinian. His ability to laugh at life and at himself drew others close to him and helped him to minister to them as a friend, brother and priest.
“Our Lady of the Hills” There’s a Catholic camp nestled in the mountains so green, With the wandering trails and the lakes so serene. Our Lady of the Hills we’ll always be true, This beautiful camp is a blessing from you. We work and we play in your honor each day, And the memories will stay as the years pass away. — from “Our Lady of the Hills Camp: Prayer and Songbook,” undated
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Congratulations Bishop McGuinness Class of 2009 — Thanks for the Memories —
2009 Graduates Mackenzie Michael Adams Justin Michael Agud Alexandra Helana Andorfer Kimberly Rose Anile Daisy Macias Arellano David Matthew Armstrong William Anthony Barker Natalie Nicole Beck Andrew Charlton Black Emma Leigh Blaney John Bradley Booker Spencer Rochelle Boone Peter Francis Boschini Philip Allan Boyers Johanna Leigh Brennan Terry Sakurai Brown William David Brown David Gary Bruce Conor Thomas Byrne Brendan Mills Cain William Seth Carey Noah James Carmichael Ryne Tyler Carson Sean de la Montagne Cary Carolyn Jean Chandler Zachary James Clark Jessica Marie Clinch Jess Meredith Conry Nicholas John Cook Kevin Todd Cortese Matthew Franklin-Lee Cowhig Ashley Brianne Cox Brittany Leigh Cox Hannah Marie DeAngelo Anna Cecile DeFrancesco Matthew Johnathan Delmestri Ross Clarke Diachenko Lena Angeli DiEugenio Sara Catherine DiEugenio Christa Nicole Dolan Hana Marie Doran Tracy Marie Dougherty Charles Joseph Draeger Giuseppe Joseph Errichiello James Brian Etling Sarah Jane Evans Neva Marie Felix Robert Martin Fitzgerald Patricia Lacey Flanery Devin Christel Fohn Megan Lee Frosheiser Helen Blanche Gagnon Rafaela Santos Gaines Andrew Carl Ganim Alyssa Ann Gaudio Julia Katherine Gomez Hugo Rogelio Gonzalez, Jr. Tessa Lucente Grogan Amanda Nicole Hacker Joseph Doyle Hamacher Veronica Anne Hammons Jay Brouwer Hankins Michael James Herschel IV Sean Michael Hodges Sarah Elizabeth Hoffman Jerelyn Marie Huber
Moon-Ji Jeong Edward William Kageorge David W. Kane III Lindsay Nicole Keller Ryan Keith Kordsmeier Rachael Marie Langley Ryan Starr Latimer Christopher Taylor Lawyer Jennifer Nichole Lenn Megan Eileen Liebal Michael Joseph Madigan Adrian Martinca Alexander Thomas Mason Anna-Marie Massoglia Christina Maria Maul Garrett Paul McAuliffe Bonnie Frances McCurry Kelly Colleen McIntyre Jordan Michael McKinnie Helen Brooke McNamara Matthew Craig Meadors Joshua David Merrill Katlyn Angalice Meyers James Joseph Montgomery Rebecca Anne Moquin Niall Anthony Moreira Adam Wilkins Morgan Erin Ann Moulson Brandon Michael Mullin Martin John Murray Steven Joseph Nealen Timothy Lawrence Nelson Cecilia Van Nitz Siobhan Elizabeth Nolan Catharyn deSales Nosek Amaka Victoria Nsonwu Jonathan Gerard Parcell Brian Nicholas Patti Carlos Marvin Pedraza Patrick Alexander Preudhomme Josie Alexandra Rathburn Chantale Cantiane Rau Matthew Allen Ridenhour Kelsey Elaine Rochford Christopher Raymond Rosic Julia Elizabeth Ross Diego Ruiz Thomas Edward Saintsing Charles Jackson Sams Michael Patton Scott Jarret Thomas Seach Emily Claire Sickelbaugh Gina Marie Simmons Carly Glorianna Sutter Chase Reynolds Swain Erinn Mary Thompson Zachary Ryan Toomey Tolan Blythe Wade Devon O’Neill Walters Edward Matthew Washing Margaret Rose Weckworth Madeline Renee Wharton Scott Thomas Wilson John Taylor Winters Courtney Paige Wofford David Hual Wu
CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL Admissions: 336-564-1011 www.bmhs.us The members of the Class of 2009 received over $9 million in scholarships.
Class of 2009 College Acceptance List American University
Appalachian State University
Kansas State University
Art Institute of Charlotte
Lake Forest College
US Military Academy at West Point
Belmont Abbey College
US Naval Academy
University of Alabama
University of Arkansas
University of Dayton
University of Florida
University of Georgia
Michigan State University
University of Hartford
College of Charleston
Middle Tennessee State University
University of Iowa
University of Louisville
North Carolina State University
University of Miami
University of Mississippi
Ohio State University
University of New Mexico
Oklahoma State University
University of Notre Dame
Eastern Carolina University
Old Dominion University
University of Radford
Penn State University
University of San Francisco
Fashion Institute of Technology
University of South Carolina
University of Southern California
University of Texas, Austin
Florida A&M University
University of Virginia
Forsyth Technical Community College
Virginia Commonwealth University
Furman University Gardner-Webb University
Salem College Salisbury State University
University of Kentucky
Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University
Savannah College of Art and Design-Atlanta
George Washington University
St. Bonaventure University
Wake Forest University
Stevens Institute of Technology
West Virginia University
Guilford Technical Community College
Sweet Briar College
Westchester University of Pennsylvania
Western Carolina University
Hargrave Military Academy
UNC Chapel Hill
High Point University
July 3, 2009
14 The Catholic News & Herald
A collection of columns, editorials and viewpoints
Morning news that can lead to prayer Heroes are of all faiths who share integrity with Christ I like to pray first thing in the morning. It orients my day toward what is meaningful and reminds me what is important. However, I confess that sometimes the morning newspaper tempts me to break my routine. I only have so much time before I need to dash to work, and when I give in to “just a peak” at the headlines I sometimes end up cutting into time for reflection. Occasionally, though, I find a quick look at the morning paper actually leads me to prayer, and it was like that Saturday. Two stories caught my attention. The first was the horrible death of Sarfraz Naeemi, a moderate Muslim cleric in Lahore, Pakistan. Naeemi was a leading religious figure in the area and had come out in opposition to the Taliban whom he had denounced as murderers. He had condemned suicide bombings as unIslamic. Apparently in retribution, he was killed when his seminary and mosque were destroyed by suicide bombers, and the Taliban claimed responsibility. The second story was on the obituary page. A young woman of 24 years, Thembi Ngubane, had died in South Africa from drug-resistant tuberculosis. What made her death notable was the way she had lived her young life in Cape Town. Ngubane had AIDS, and in a part of the world where that is still a stigma that people often suffer in silence, Ngubane fought a very public battle with her illness. She made recordings of events in her life like the first conversation she ever had with her mother about AIDS. She recorded the ordinary, day-to-day routines of living with a disease in a country where drugs are hard to come by despite the fact that nearly a third of young women have AIDS. Her willingness to speak out publicly brought her to the attention of National Public Radio and to audiences throughout the world. Now, both Sarfraz Naeemi and Thembi Ngubane, two people of vastly different backgrounds from different parts of the world, are silent. Somehow the world seems a little lonelier because of their passing, and a little more like a place where prayer is in order. I’ve just finished a Christology class for the master’s degree I’m pursuing, and one of the questions that class brought to the fore was Christ’s question to the apostles: “Who do you say that I am?” When I think of Christ, I always think of a man of integrity who lived
For the Journey EFFIE CALDAROLA cns columnist
his life with courage despite the obvious adversity coming his way because of his outspokenness. When he went to Bethany and raised Lazarus, he knew he would draw the attention of the authorities, and sure enough, after Lazarus was raised, Jesus’ enemies began to plot how to kill him. According to John’s Gospel (11:54), Jesus went to the town of Ephraim, bordering on the desert, and stayed there a few days. It was there he made his monumental decision to go up to Jerusalem, sealing his fate. Sarfraz Naeemi made a similar decision when he decided to speak out for the truth of his faith and condemn atrocities. He must have known he was putting his life on the line. Similarly, Thembi Ngubane threw anonymity to the wind when she let the world know she suffered from a disease dreaded and stigmatized in her country. But by doing so, she opened the door to fresh air, to truth and enlightenment where there are sometimes darkness and shame. Let us pray for all the world’s heroes, for people of all faiths who share the word “integrity” with Christ.
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Why are we looking for the loophole? Capital punishment is becoming an intrinsically evil act that cannot be justified To the many recent reasons already marshaled against capital punishment — from the multiple examples of wrongful convictions to its expense — now add this: It doesn’t work. Such an appeal to pragmatism supersedes even morality and economy in our time. Eighty-eight percent of the top criminologists in the United States believe the death penalty is not a deterrent to homicide, according to a study published this month by the Northwestern University School of Law. “The consensus among criminologists is that the death penalty does not add any significant deterrent effect above that of long-term imprisonment,” concluded the study. Three-quarters of the respondents agreed that debates about the death penalty distract Congress and state legislatures “from focusing on real solutions to crime problems.” Too many people use the fact that Catholic Church teaching does not rule out capital punishment in order to support their position in its favor. True, the church does not rule it out, yet it hardly offers a ringing endorsement. Catholic teaching accepts the death penalty if it “is the only possible way” of defending lives against an aggressor. But the Catechism of the Catholic Church also notes that “the cases in which the execution of the offender is an absolute necessity are very rare if not practically nonexistent.” Can anyone honestly say that in the American system of justice capital punishment meets that moral standard? Why are we looking for the loophole? When granting that pinpoint exemption, the catechism didn’t have in mind an advanced, first-world country such as the United States with its supermax prisons. Killing the offender might possibly be permissible in nomadic, tribal societies which have no other means of incarceration. States are legally bound to avoid cruel or unnecessarily painful punishment, said Richard Dieter, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center. This makes it a medical procedure,
Consider This STEPHEN KENT cns columnist
“so doing all you can means usually having a doctor involved,” he said, thus involving yet another organization with its own code of ethics. The American Medical Association forbids physicians from having any direct role in lethal injections, including “an action which would assist, supervise or contribute to the ability of another individual to directly cause the death of the condemned.” So, is the picture clearing? An intrinsically evil act is one that is objectively wrong in and of itself, and which therefore can never be justified by circumstances or consequences. Capital punishment in the United States is approaching that definition. Death penalty advocates who appropriate the catechism’s “only when and then if” provisions in their argument are similar to a teenager asking his mother for permission to use the car, and is told to ask his father. The father’s response is: “You may use the car, but only if it is in connection with school or work; you can’t go more than 10 blocks from home and have to be back in the driveway at 9:30.” “Mom,” the teen says, jingling the keys on the way out, “Dad says it’s OK for me to use the car.” The grudging exemption granted by the catechism for highly unusual circumstances stretches beyond any reasonable interpretation that could be taken as granting permission. The bottom line is that Catholics should not be looking for the loophole to do something that is inconsistent with our Christian view of the value of life and the dignity of the human person.
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Contraceptive brochure: ‘You are married. Now don’t get pregnant’? Ironic that state gives moral instruction on birth control, while people pay little attention to church’s moral teachings Just when people ought to start making babies, my state tells them how not to. In the state of Maryland (and probably in other states), when a couple receives their marriage license, the envelope contains a brochure titled “Family Planning for You.” I think it’s strange. Just when couples are morally free and socially responsible enough to create new life, society says, “Wait a minute, do you really want to have that child?” It is as if the state is saying, “You are married. Now don’t get pregnant.” This is not a Democratic or Republican thing. Both parties have promoted this. The brochures were first printed in 2006 under the previous Republican administration. They prominently carried the names of former Republican Gov. Robert Ehrlich Jr., and former Republican Lt. Gov. Michael Steele. Steele is the Republican National Committee chairman and a Catholic. The newer brochures bear the name of current Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who like Steele is Catholic. Isn’t it strange that Catholic officials of both parties are promoting forms of birth control that the church does not consider moral?
Here are Catholics putting their name on a brochure advocating the pill, condoms, sterilization, NuvaRing, Depo Provera, the “diaphragm & spermicide” and the morning-after pill. This last form of birth control is really a chemical abortion. The brochure’s only mention of natural family planning is in a segment called “Fertility Awareness Methods.” It accurately states that NFP can be used “to avoid or achieve pregnancy.” But then, unlike all the other forms of birth control, it notes, “You must get special training to use these methods,” but it does not say where to get this special training. The implication is that natural family planning is too complicated for most people, which is not true. And what about the couple? Which of these messages are they meant to take away? Marriage is a state of life in which couples can and should be open to new life. Yet they are given a worried message of “concern.” Ominously, the state offers questions to be considered: “Am I ready to become a parent? Will I be able to finish school? ... Will I be able to get or keep a decent job with health care benefits for my child and myself?” Who knows these answers? I doubt
Forgiven but not yet purified Sin’s toxic effect creates cosmic debt that must be paid, forgiveness not withstanding God is just. His infinite mercy, however, does not cancel his justice. The toxic effect of our sins creates a cosmic debt that must be paid. Yes, we are forgiven, but we cannot enjoy the beatific vision until our soul is purified. This is the teaching of the church on purgatory. It is not spelled out fully for us, but we do know that after death a soul is not yet ready for heaven until it is completely purified. This is where suffering comes in to play. Suffering, when understood properly, is a great mystery because it can bring many spiritual blessings. Permit me to pose a hypothetical question to you: Suppose Hitler sincerely asked for God’s forgiveness moments before he died. We are certain that the Lord in his infinite mercy would forgive him. Nevertheless, considering the monumental devastation and misery he caused, Hitler would have to pay in some way an enormous debt for his infamy. It is like that with us too, even though we have sins not as monumental. There is a thing called the “temporal punishment due to sin.” This is part of the fullness of God’s plan. Mary, the mother or Jesus, continually
asks us to fast and do penance in reparation for the sins of the world. She even warns against future catastrophes if we do not do penance. Whether you believe in the validity of Mary’s urgings or not, you should ponder the fact that millions of people make pilgrimages to Marian shrines all over the world. Many do so to offer their sufferings and humiliations in a spirit of reparation. God wants us to share in his redemptive action. Even though he has personally forgiven us for our sins, there is still a toxic residue which we call the “temporal punishment due to sin.” As such, the purification of each person’s soul is still underway even after death. This concept helps us to understand that suffering is not merely a negative thing; it has a meaningful and fruitful spiritual benefit in terms of eternity. This knowledge helps us cope better with the pains and agonies of this life. Suffering is the coin that purchased our redemption, for Christ surrendered himself to the Father, taking upon himself the sins of the world. This is what St. Paul means when he tells us to join our suffering to the suffering of Christ. Suffering is a mystery we do not
Parish Diary FATHER PETER DALY cns columnist
my parents did. But as to the question asking essentially if a couple really wants to be a mother or father, the answer ought to be, “Sure, that’s why we got married.” Why is the government asking these questions? It seems it is trying to discourage pregnancies among married couples. Isn’t it strange that the state sees fit to tell married couples how not to have babies? One other question about these brochures occurred to me. If the state decides to recognize same-sex marriage, will it give out this same brochure to same-sex couples? Probably not. And if not, what does that say? Are the two types of relationships really different? If heterosexual relationships and homosexual relationships are not both biologically generative, is that enough difference to treat them differently in law? Last summer we marked the 40th anniversary of Pope Paul VI’s encyclical on human life, “Humanae Vitae.” It is ironic that the state gives moral instruction on birth control, while people pay little attention to the moral teaching of the church. This brochure is inappropriate.
Spirituality for Today FATHER JOHN CATOIR cns columnist
fully understand, but in the process of purification suffering is key. By our agonies we are able to participate in the Lord’s work of redemption. When I read St. Paul’s words, “Help carry one another’s burdens; in this way you will fulfill the law of Jesus Christ,” I see beyond the idea of doing good deeds in this world. I see that suffering is redemptive. Unhappiness comes to us in life. Good and worthy people suffer more than they deserve. In the cosmic scheme of things, however, by sharing in the cross of Christ we are cleansed. It is perfectly normal to rebel and ask why we have to suffer, but in the mystery of life we learn that the cross is good. It earns us the gift of heaven. At some point in the mysterious future, God’s justice and mercy will meld, which makes it possible for his mercy to triumph in the end. So for now be at peace in the knowledge that by offering your pains and humiliations for yourself — and the poor souls in purgatory — you are very pleasing to God.
More places for prayer, Gospel needed for new vocations, says pope The Pope Speaks POPE BENEDICT XVI
VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Young men need more places and more opportunities to listen to the word of God and reflect in silence so that they can better hear if God is calling them to the priesthood, Pope Benedict XVI said. The low number of priestly ordinations in some parts of the world should not lead to discouragement, he said July 1 during his weekly general audience in St. Peter’s Square. Instead it should be the impetus to increase the number of places dedicated “to silence and to listening to the word, and to take better care of spiritual direction and the sacrament of confession so that God’s voice, which always continues to call and confirm, may be heard and readily followed by many young people,” he said. The pope dedicated his catechesis to the church’s celebration of the Year for Priests, which began June 19. He said there was a close link between the year of St. Paul, which ended June 28 and the current Year for Priests. Here is the text of the pope’s audience remarks in English. Dear Brothers and Sisters, There is a close link between the Pauline Year, which concluded last Sunday, and the church’s current celebration of the Year for Priests. As we have seen, St. Paul, in his life and his writings, teaches us that the mystery of Christ must stand at the very heart of our lives as individuals and as a community. This is true in a very special way of priests. In St. John Mary Vianney, the patron saint of parish priests, we see a wonderful example of a priest whose person was completely identified with his ministry. The priest’s personal identity, grounded in his calling and his sacramental configuration to Christ, may not be separated from his pastoral activity. Indeed, the ministry of every priest is essentially “cultic” in the fullest sense of the word: it is meant to enable the faithful to offer their lives to God as a pleasing sacrifice (cf. Rom 12:1). It is my hope that this Year for Priests will help all priests to appreciate the immense grace of their vocation, consecration and mission. During this year may the whole church pray and work more fervently for the sanctification of priests, an increase of priestly vocations and a greater appreciation of the role of the priest in the life of the ecclesial community.
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