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December 17, 2010 S E RV I N G C H R I ST A N D C O N N EC T I N G C AT H O L I C S I N W E ST E R N N O R T H C A R O L I N A

Catholics Come Home campaign kicks off this week: Q&A with the campaign’s founder,

Prepare for the Christ child! Parishes across the diocese prepare for the birth of Our Savior. Starting on page 3, coverage gets you in the Christmas spirit.



Out with the old, in with the older Holy Spirit Church in Denver brings back sacred art with recent renovation,


FUNDED by the parishioners of the diocese of charlotte THANK YOU!

Looking back Health care legislation, the Haiti earthquake, the Baghdad cathedral bombing and more – 2010 was a year of big headlines for Catholics. Inside: snapshots of the year’s most significant stories, 18-21

Calendar 4 Diocese 3-10


mix 16

nation & World 18-21 Schools 14-15

Viewpoints 22-24

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Our faith

2 | December 17, 2010 CATHOLIC NEWS HERALD 

A saintly life

Take a closer look

Pope Benedict XVI

Love, truth bring positive change


hanging the world for the better does not come from leaders making grandiose promises or calling for a violent revolution, Pope Benedict XVI said: It comes from the humble individuals who silently carry God’s light and love to everyone around them. The pope made his remarks during a visit earlier this week to a Rome parish. In his homily, the pope commented on the readings for the third Sunday of Advent, in which John the Baptist sends messengers to ask Jesus, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” People still ask the same question, wondering if He really is the one who will change the world, the pope said. “Many prophets, ideologues and dictators have come and said ‘It is not him. He did not change the world. It is us”’ who will do so through empires, dictatorships and totalitarian regimes, he said. Such leaders did change the world, he said, but for the worse, and today “we know that nothing has come out of these great promises other than great emptiness and great destruction.” The world will continue to see that “it is not the violent revolution of the world, not the great promises that change the world, but the silent light of truth, the goodness of God that is the sign of His presence and that gives us certainty that we are completely loved and that we are not forgotten, that we are not a product of chance, but have been willed from love.”

“The Martyrdom of St. Stephen,” a fresco painted in 1324 by Bernardo Daddi, at Santa Croce in Florence, Italy.

St. Stephen, the first martyr Feast day: Dec. 26 On Dec. 26, the universal Church commemorates the death of St. Stephen in 34 A.D., the first man to give his life in witness to the faith. He is sometimes referred to as the “protomartyr.” St. Stephen was a Greek Jew who had converted to Christianity and who was ordained by St. Peter as one of the first deacons in the early Church. The sixth chapter of the Acts of the Apostles states that Stephen was “a man filled with faith and with the Holy Spirit ... filled with grace and fortitude.” The Bible also notes that Stephen was a gifted orator and that his logic was sound. The conversions of many people are attributed to him. However, his outspokenness provoked the ire of some of his listeners, particularly the Sanhedrin, and he was accused of blaspheming against Moses and against God. He was brought before the high priest in Jerusalem, and many false witnesses testified against him. Acts recounts that, in his defense, he gave an eloquent analysis of salvation history and the love and mercy of God. He also recounted Israel’s repeated ungratefulness towards their

God. However, it didn’t sway his accusers, who proceeded to take him outside the city and stone him. One of those who participated in the stoning was Saul of Tarsus, who would later be converted and become the Apostle Paul. As he was about to die, Stephen looked up to heaven and said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing at the right hand of God.” Then, as he was being stoned, he cried out, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” His last words, as the stoning had brought him to his knees, were “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” In most Catholic art, Stephen is invested with a crown of martyrdom, holding three stones and a martyrs’ palm branch. In Eastern Christian iconography, he is shown as a young beardless man with a tonsure, wearing a deacon’s vestments, and often holding a miniature church building and a censer.

This famous Italian fresco depicts the story of St. Stephen’s martyrdom in two panels. In the left panel, St. Stephen appears before the Sanhedrin judges, where they accuse him of blasphemy against Moses and against God. He is a young man, dressed in deacon’s vestments and wearing a tonsure. As he defends the faith, he points heavenward and describes seeing “the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God” (Acts 7:55). In the right panel, Stephen is being stoned outside the gates of Jerusalem. But it’s not an act of mob violence; it’s a death sentence ordered by law when someone had been convicted of blasphemy. Stephen has been thrown down to his knees, while the men who had testified falsely against him cast the first stones. They have thrown off their outer cloaks, to make throwing the rocks easier. The character who holds one man’s coat and cheers on the sidelines is Saul – the future Apostle Paul, but at this point he is still a severe persecutor of Christians. Typically the bodies of those stoned to death would be left to be eaten by animals. But Acts recounts that “devout men,” most likely including Gamaliel (a wealthy Christian who would become the teacher of St. Paul and St. Barnabas), secretly came and took St. Stephen’s remains to be entombed at his estate about 20 miles outside Jerusalem. His tomb was forgotten to history until rediscovered in 415 A.D., when Gamaliel appeared in visions to a priest named Father Lucien. — Source: “The Catholic Encyclopedia” (1912), online at

— Catholic News Agency

Your daily Scripture readings SCRIPTURE FOR THE WEEK OF DEC. 19 - DEC. 25

Sunday, Isaiah 7:10-14, Romans 1:1-7, Matthew 1:18-24; Monday, Isaiah 7:10-14, Luke 1:26-38; Tuesday (St. Peter Canisius), Song of Songs 2:8-14, Luke 1:39-45; Wednesday, 1 Samuel 1:2428, 1 Samuel 2:1, 4-8, Luke 1:46-56; Thursday (St. John of Kanty), Malachi 3:1-4, 23-24, Luke 1:57-66; Friday, 2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8-12, 14, 16, Luke 1:67-79; Saturday (The Nativity of the Lord), Isaiah 9:1-6, Titus 2:11-14, Luke 2:1-14


Sunday (The Holy Family), Sirach 3:2-7, 12-14, Colossians 3:12-21, Matthew 2:13-15, 19-23; Monday (St. John), 1 John 1:1-4, John 20:1-8; Tuesday (The Holy Innocents), 1 John 1:5-2:2, Matthew 2:13-18; Wednesday (St. Thomas Becket), 1 John 2:3-11, Luke 2:22-35; Thursday, 1 John 2:12-17, Luke 2:36-40; Friday (St. Sylvester I), 1 John 2:18-21, John 1:1-18; Saturday (Mary, Mother of God), Numbers 6:22-27, Galatians 4:4-7, Luke 2:16-21


Sunday (Epiphany of the Lord), Isaiah 60:1-6, Ephesians 3:2-3, 5-6, Matthew 2:1-12; Monday (Most Holy Name of Jesus), 1 John 3:22-4:6, Matthew 4:12-17, 23-25; Tuesday (St. Elizabeth Ann Seton), 1 John 4:7-10, Mark 6:34-44; Wednesday (St. John Neumann), 1 John 4:11-18, Mark 6:45-52; Thursday (St. Andre Bessette), 1 John 4:19-5:4, Luke 4:14-22; Friday (St. Raymond of Peñafort), 1 John 5:5-13, Luke 5:1216; Saturday, 1 John 5:14-21, John 3:22-30


Sunday (The Baptism of the Lord), Isaiah 42:1-4, 6-7, Acts 10:34-38, Matthew 3:13-17; Monday, Hebrews 1:1-6, Mark 1:14-20; Tuesday, Hebrews 2:5-12, Mark 1:21-28; Wednesday, Hebrews 2:14-18, Mark 1:29-39; Thursday (St. Hilary), Hebrews 3:7-14, Mark 1:40-45; Friday, Hebrews 4:1-5, 11, Mark 2:1-12; Saturday, Hebrews 4:12-16, Mark 2:13-17

Our parishes catholic news heraldI

December 17, 2010 | 


Catholics Come Home campaign kicks off this week

In Brief Cathedral readies for 51st Christmas dinner CHARLOTTE — St. Patrick Cathedral, 1621 Dilworth Road East, will sponsor its 51st Annual Christmas Dinner for those who would otherwise be without Christmas celebrations. The free dinner will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 25, in the St. Patrick School cafeteria, located at 1125 Buchanan St. Last year, the parish prepared and served about 2,500 meals. This dinner is for those who, because of financial need, lack of family or are traveling, would not have a Christmas dinner. Transportation is provided for those who need it, and the dinner includes entertainment by volunteers and small gifts and clothing. Meals will also be delivered to those unable to attend. Planners are in need of warm weather clothing items such as warm socks, gloves, hats and blankets, along with any financial support and volunteers. Items can be dropped off in the church office through Dec. 22. Items can also be dropped off in the school gym on Dec. 19 and on Christmas Eve. For meal deliveries, transportation, volunteer schedule or other information, contact the church office at 704-334-2283.

Catholics Come Home is an independent Catholic organization that creates media campaigns designed to reawaken the spirit in existing Catholics and invite inactive and non-Catholics to investigate the Catholic faith. It is headquartered in Roswell, Ga. Founder and President Tom Peterson recently spoke Peterson with the Catholic News Herald about what Catholics in the Diocese

CNH: How did Catholics Come Home start? Peterson: I was an advertising exec living in Phoenix, with a young family and a very successful career. While I never missed Mass on Sunday, I never was truly present in my faith. I was a mediocre Catholic. During a retreat, God’s love became very real to me and I felt called to live a deeper faith. Soon after, Catholics Come Home was born. Our first campaign was in 1998 in Phoenix. More than 3,000 people came back to the Church in a matter of two-and-a-half weeks.

TV, radio campaign launches Dec. 17 Television and radio stations throughout the diocese have begun airing commercials with compelling messages of welcome for fallen-away Catholics and non-Catholics. Spots will air more than 2,100 times until Jan. 23. The campaign, which cost $335,000, is being funded by a special collection taken up in parishes last summer and a diocesan contribution. To learn more, check out


The Music Man

Dr. Larry Stratemeyer shares his life’s passion for sacred music, especially during the holidays SueAnn Howell

Midnight MEF planned for Christmas

Staff writer

ANDREWS — Holy Redeemer Church, 214 Aquone Road, Andrews, will have a midnight Mass in the Extraordinary Form – believed a first for the Diocese of Charlotte – starting at midnight on Saturday. Father Carl Kaltreider will be the celebrant. — Sid Cundiff

St. Joseph fundraiser success ASHEBORO — St. Joseph Church in Asheboro recently collected $838, benefitting the building fund for its new church, through a Christmas Home Tour earlier this month. The Christmas Home Tour was hosted by parishioners Tom and Barbara Howard and Bob and Susan Behr. The fundraiser was organized by the parish Ladies Guild. The new church is slated to be built on 44 acres the parish has already purchased. A capital campaign is planned for next year. — Launa Schneider

2011 March for Life planned CHARLOTTE — The 2011 March for Life is coming Jan. 14. In Charlotte, a bus will depart at noon, Friday, Jan. 14, from the parking lot on the corners of West Palmer and South Church streets, across from the Diocese of IN BRIEF, SEE page 5

of Charlotte can expect to experience during the Catholics Come Home campaign:

David Hains Director of Communication

CHARLOTTE — Chances are, if you have attended Mass at St. Patrick Cathedral in the past couple of decades, you have enjoyed the great gift of music that emanates from the choir loft and its majestic organ. For more than 19 years, the maestro responsible for playing the cathedral’s towering 31-year-old Zimmer & Sons pipe organ and directing the St. Patrick choir and has been Dr. Larry Stratemeyer. A native of Missouri, Stratemeyer first showed an interest in music at the age of 8. “My parents were not musicians, but they recognized I had interest in playing the organ,” Stratemeyer says. “They asked around and were able to get me a piano and a piano teacher. They allowed me to take lessons all through school.” When he was 11, he started playing the organ at their church. “I believe that being involved in music as a child I witnessed music that was beautiful in the context of church and school.” Stratemeyer’s music teachers encouraged him, helping him keep up with lessons and hone his skills. By the time he was in junior high school, he was accompanying the high school choir. After his sophomore year in high school, he had the opportunity to take summer organ lessons at local colleges to perfect his skills. “The person I ended up studying with my last two years of high school was the organ professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas MUSIC, SEE page 10

Dr. Larry Stratemeyer, the classically trained music director at St. Patrick Cathedral in Charlotte, is pictured with the 31-year-old Zimmer & Sons pipe organ. Over the past 19 years, Stratemeyer has been instrumental in creating a beautiful musical backdrop to the special liturgies and concerts held there throughout the year.

sueann howell | catholic news herald

4 | December 17, 2010 OUR PARISHES 

Diocesan calendar

Charlotte Pastoral Center, to take people who cannot walk to the corner of Trade and Tryon streets to join the march in prayer for the unborn. For information, go online to www.

hOLY REDEEMER CHURCH, 214 Aquone road

Bishop Peter J. Jugis will participate in the following event over the next three weeks: JAN. 3-7 Annual bishopS’ retreat St. Petersburg, Fla.

— Mass in Extraordinary Form, midnight Dec. 25. Contact 828-321-4463.

To our readers


The next issue of the Catholic News Herald will be published Jan. 7, 2011.

— Bible Study Groups, 9:45-10:45 a.m. Sundays or 7:30-9 p.m. Wednesdays. Contact Deacon Kevin Williams at 704-537-9973.

All of us at the Catholic News Herald wish you and your family a blessed Christmas and a happy New Year!

st. ann church, 3635 park road — Mass in Extraordinary Form, 6:30 p.m. Jan. 1 ST. BASIL EASTERN CATHOLIC MISSION, 7702 PinevilleMatthews Road, Charlotte Catholic High School Campus — Feast of the Nativity Mass, 10 a.m. Dec. 25

ST. THOMAS AQUINAS CHURCH, 1400 SUTHER ROAD — Misa de Gallo, 7 p.m. Dec. 17

— St. Basil the Great Feast Day Mass, 6 p.m. Dec. 31 — Feast of the Theophany Mass with the Great Blessing of Water, 6 p.m. Jan. 5 ST. GABRIEL CHURCH, 3016 Providence Road — Shining Stars Adult Day Respite for those with early to moderate Alzheimer’s Disease, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Contact Suzanne Bach at 704-335-0253. — Shining Stars Adult Day Respite Caregivers Support Group, Ministry Center Room E, 10-11:30 a.m. last Monday of each month. Contact Suzanne Bach at 704-335-0253. ST. MATTHEW CHURCH, 8015 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy. — Polish Mass, 3 p.m. Dec. 19. Reconciliation available at 2 p.m. st. peter church, 507 s. tryon st. — The Mystery of God Becoming Human, 8:30 a.m.-noon Dec. 18. Register at 704-332-2901. — Eleventh Annual Kennedy Lecture: “And You Welcomed Me,” Biss Hall, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Jan. 15. RSVP to ST. PETER CHURCH, 507 S. Tryon St. — Jewish Catholic Dialogue Group, 5 p.m. Jan. 9. This year’s theme is “Life Cycles: How Each Faith Celebrates.” Call Ann Weber at 704-364-9850 or Gail Breen at 704-5221495

December 17, 2010 Volume 20 • Number 5

1123 S. Church St. Charlotte, N.C. 28203-4003 704-370-3333 PUBLISHER: The Most Reverend Peter J. Jugis, Bishop of Charlotte

EDITOR: Patricia L. Guilfoyle 704-370-3334, COMMUNICATIONS ASSISTANT/CIRCULATION: Denise Onativia 704-370-3333, ADVERTISING MANAGER: Cindi Feerick 704-370-3332, STAFF WRITER: SueAnn Howell 704-370-3354, GRAPHIC DESIGNER: Tim Faragher 704-370-3331,


In Brief


Bishop Peter J. Jugis


December 17, 2010 | 

— Support for Unemployed, Aquinas Hall, 10 a.m. Mondays. Contact Steve Basinski at or 704-456-7434. st. vincent de paul church, 6828 old reid road — Charlotte Catholic Women’s Group Coffee and Reflection, presented by Father David Miller, 9 a.m. Jan. 3. Contact Linda Granzow at or 704847-7872.

HENDERSONVILLE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION CHURCH, 208 Seventh Ave. W. — Widows Support Group, Room 2, 10 a.m. third Tuesday of each month. Contact Jane Lombardo at 828-693-9014.

MOUNT AIRY holy angels church, 1208 N. Main st. — Missa Cantata, 10 a.m. Dec. 25. Contact or 336-7868147.

WINSTON-SALEM HOLY FAMILY CHURCH, 4820 Kinnamon Road — Charismatic Prayer Group, Chapel, 7:15 p.m. Mondays

SPX starts new Knights council GREENSBORO — St. Pius X Church in Greensboro recently inaugurated a new Knights of Columbus Assembly to be named “Father Francis Connolly Assembly 3253.” Recently approved by the Supreme Council, one of the primary aims of the new assembly will be to foster a spirit of patriotism and to encourage active Catholic citizenship in the local community. The Assembly Color Corps, in full regalia, will participate in parades, wreath laying ceremonies and particularly in church functions. Assistance to active and retired veterans, as well as those in veterans’ hospitals, will receive special attention by the assembly members. Walter Kulla will serve as the chartered Faithful Navigator of the assembly. — John Russell

Charlottean named to Malta executive board

CHARLOTTE — Jackie Gallagher of Charlotte, recently elected to the board — Eucharistic Adoration, Curlin Center, 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m. of directors for the Order of Malta, has Thursdays also been selected to join its Executive Committee for the Order of Malta-Federal — Life in the Spirit Seminar, Function Hall, sponsored by Association. The seven-member executive BLD Charlotte, March 26-27, 2011. Submission deadline: committee includes the president, vice Dec. 20. Contact Bert and Lith Golamco at guapolai7@aol. president, chancellor and four other com or 336-201-2774. members of this international charitable organization.

HIGH POINT maryfield chapel, 1315 greensboro road — The Holy Spirit and the New Evangelization, presented by Father Tom Forrest, 7 p.m. Jan. 6. Contact Bette Steinkamp at 336-689-5743.

— Eucharistic Adoration, Chapel, 7:30 a.m. Fridays-8:45 a.m. Saturdays

The Catholic News Herald is published by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte 35 times a year. NEWS: The Catholic News Herald welcomes your news and photographs for publication in our print and online PDF editions. Please e-mail information, attaching photos in JPG format with a recommended resolution of 150 dpi or higher, to catholicnews@ All submitted items become the property of the Catholic News Herald and are subject to reuse, in whole or in part, in print, electronic formats and archives. ADVERTISING: For advertising rates and information, contact Advertising Manager Cindi Feerick at 704-370-3332 or ckfeerick@

Executive director of Catholic Social Services to retire Dec. 31 Elizabeth Thurbee leaves 30-year career legacy SueAnn Howell Staff writer

HUNTERSVILLE st. mark church, 14740 stumptown road — Our Lady of Perpetual Help Novenas, 6:30 p.m. Mondays

sueann howell | catholic news herald

After 30 years pioneering, developing and coordinating all of the programs that Catholic Social Services of the Diocese of Charlotte has to offer, Elizabeth Thurbee will retire Dec. 31. She has served all four bishops who have led the diocese.

Is your parish or school hosting a free event open to the public? Deadline for all submissions for the Diocesan Calendar is 10 days prior to desired publication date. Submit in writing to or fax to 704-370-3382.

Torch run comes to diocese

An international torch run, the Guadalupe Torch Run from Mexico-New York, passed through Charlotte Nov. 25 and Lexington Nov. 28. The torch and its carriers were received by St. Vincent de Paul Church in Charlotte and Our Lady of the Rosary Church in Lexington. The run aimed to unite people separated by the borders of the two countries and to promote friendship and solidarity among community groups. The Catholic News Herald reserves the right to reject or cancel advertising for any reason, and does not Departing from the most sacred place recommend or guarantee any product, service or benefit claimed in Mexico, the Basilica of Our Lady of by our advertisers. Guadalupe, the torch passed through every state where families of immigrants live, on its SUBSCRIPTIONS: $15 per year for all registered parishioners of way to New York for the Feast of Our Lady of the Diocese of Charlotte and $23 per year for all others. Guadalupe. POSTMASTER: Periodicals class postage (USPC 007-393) paid at Charlotte, N.C. Send address corrections to the Catholic News Herald, 1123 S. Church St., Charlotte, N.C. 28203.

— Linda McAdam We welcome your parish’s news. E-mail items to Editor Patricia Guilfoyle at plguilfoyle@

CHARLOTTE — When the Diocese of Charlotte hired employees in 1980 to staff a small office of Catholic Social Services specializing in adoptions, they turned to the three nuns of the Missionary Sisters of the Blessed Trinity from Philadelphia who had been running the program since 1949. After some concerted prayer, the Sisters knew exactly who was meant for the job: Elizabeth Thurbee. Thurbee met three of the Trinitarian Sisters in 1975, when she served as the public information officer for the Mecklenburg County Department of Social Services. At that time, Thurbee provided them information about Charlotte. Then, out of the blue in 1980, Sister Barbara DeMoranville called her to discuss the new adoption supervisor position with CSS that would cover the 46 counties in western North Carolina. With small children at home and needing a part-time schedule, Thurbee expressed concern about being tapped for the job. The sisters were persistent in Thurbee taking the job and met her requirements so

she could say “yes.” “I asked Sister Barbara (after accepting the job), ‘You were so persistent. Why did you call me, anyway?’” Sister Barbara told her that the Trinitarian Sisters had been praying about someone to take the position and nothing had happened. But the morning Sister Barbara called Thurbee, she said, “I woke up at 4 o’clock in the morning with your name in my mind. So I knew that was what we were supposed to do.” That began Thurbee’s 30-year journey where, working for each of the four bishops who have led the diocese over the past 37 years, Thurbee helped to develop and steer more social services to those most in need in western North Carolina.


In 1985, Thurbee was promoted to office director of Catholic Social Services’ family services office. Then eight years later, she became executive director of Catholic Social Services, a job that she has filled since – through all kinds of changes, ups and downs. “The current face of Catholic Social Services truly reflects the work, dedication and leadership of Elizabeth Thurbee,”

photo provided by diocesan archives

Thurbee was hired in 1980 by the Diocese of Charlotte to run its adoption services program, which had been staffed by the Trinitarian Sisters from Philiadelphia since 1949. says Gerry Carter, associate director of Catholic Social Services. “Over these past 30 years, she has been front and center in the development and sustainment of so many of our programs and services.” THURBee, SEE page 17

6 | December 17, 2010 OUR PARISHES 

December 17, 2010 | 


Father Brian Cook poses with one of his adopted families, the Onumahs, during a recent celebration at St. Leo the Great Church in Winston-Salem of his 25 years of being a priest.

Mollie Gordon | Catholic News Herald

Father Cook marks 25th anniversary as priest Mollie Gordon Correspondent

WINSTON-SALEM — Father Brian J. Cook, pastor of St. Leo the Great Church in Winston-Salem, celebrated his silver jubilee as a priest Dec. 3 surrounded by his parishioners, family and mentor Bishop Emeritus William G. Curlin. Parishioners hosted the celebration to express their affection and reflect on his ministry. Every parish organization was involved in putting on the event, coordinated by the parish council. “You are his adopted family, all of you,” said Bishop Curlin, homilist and family friend of nearly 50 years during the Mass. “He’s come here to be your brother, not your boss, but your brother, to walk with you to heaven.” Father Cook’s “adopted family” extends to Holy Family in Clemmons, where he served as parochial vicar before coming to St. Leo. Through the generosity of Father Michael Buttner, Father Cook was also able to share a Mass of thanksgiving and reception there a week earlier. Father Cook was born and raised in Washington, D.C., in the same parish where then-Father Curlin served. He was ordained a priest on Dec. 7, 1985. He has served as a chaplain to the Missionaries of Charity, including working directly with Blessed Teresa of Calcutta; as a paramedic; in a facility serving severely

abused children; as parochial vicar at Holy Family Church in Clemmons, and now as pastor of St. Leo the Great Church and School. All five of Father Cook’s siblings and their families attended the Mass and celebration afterwards in the parish hall. His niece and great-nieces presented the gifts at Mass. His eldest sister Catherine, a Poor Clare nun and abbess of their monastery in Great Falls, Mont., gave words of prayerful appreciation from the Cook family to the people of St. Leo’s. His other siblings and their families contributed family photos to display at the reception. It was the first time in decades that his family was able to share a weekend together, Father Cook noted. Following Mass, guests filled the parish center for the reception. A string trio played as parishioners, friends and family shared stories about Father Cook. A multimedia presentation of favorite songs and family photos was also on display. “He is kind and compassionate. When you talk to him, you feel like you’re talking to Jesus,” said John Harrison of Holy Family in Clemmons. The joy and sharing of the celebration didn’t end with the reception. When the remaining food was taken to a local shelter, it was taken straight to the tables, not stored in the kitchen for later. “The loaves and fishes again fed the multitude,” beamed Father Cook.


(704) 737-8215

Kathy Roach | Catholic News Herald

Father Joseph Zuschmidt speaks with parishioner Betty Galogoci after Mass at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in High Point recently. Father Zuschmidt recently celebrated his 45th anniversary as a priest.

IHM’s ‘Father Joe’ marks 45 years as a priest Kathy Roach Correspondent

HIGH POINT — Father Joseph Zuschmidt, Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, celebrated 45 years of being a priest Nov. 20. Father Zuschmidt, parochial vicar at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in High Point, says he loves his vocation and has no plans to retire. Born and raised in the Philadelphia area, he still has family there including a brother, sister, nieces and nephews. He attended schools run by the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales. This, as well as his calling to the priesthood, led him to join the order. He attended seminary in Germany to study theology. He was ordained there by a bishop he knew, who was attending the Vatican II ecumenical council meetings in 1965. Father Zuschmidt said he always wanted to be a teacher, and that is what he did after his ordination and return to the U.S. He taught at the Salesianum School in

Wilmington, Del., a college preparatory Catholic high school for boys. He also taught at DeSales University in Allentown, Penn. He went on from there to spend 32 years at various parishes in the Charlotte diocese. “It is unusual and noteworthy to spend so many years in one area,” he says. He was the founding pastor at St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Charlotte. He was also pastor at Holy Infant Church in Durham, Queen of the Apostles Church in Belmont, and Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in High Point. He also spent some time as campus minister at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte. “At 70, after 30 years of being pastor, I am happy to be parochial vicar,” he says. He says he is now able to continue doing what he loves best – teaching – through RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) classes, adult faith formation courses, and baptism classes. He says he also enjoys preaching and celebrating Mass.

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Bishop Peter J. Jugis dedicated the new St. Pius X Church in Greensboro April 17. Above, during a striking part of the ceremony, he incenses the new altar and the entire church.

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Patricia Guilfoyle | Catholic News Herald

St. Pius X marks end of Golden Jubilee year Ryan Murray Correspondent

GREENSBORO — With St. Pius X Church in Greensboro celebrating its 50th anniversary as a parish this year, one may say the parish has reached its “Golden Years.” But according to Monsignor Anthony J. Marcaccio, pastor, nothing could be further from the truth. “In this Golden Jubilee Year, we are in the habit of saying that St. Pius X is 50 years old as a parish,” Monsignor Marcaccio said. “But the reality I perceive as pastor is that St. Pius is 50 years young.” Throughout 2010, St. Pius X has been celebrating its golden anniversary with a variety of festivals, events and speakers. Most notably, the dedication of a new church took place April 17. Jubilee festivities concluded with a banquet earlier this month. “One of the great highlights of our parish history and certainly this Golden Jubilee is the dedication of our new church,” Monsignor Marcaccio said. “Our campaign to build the church won an international award and that our 50th anniversary has coincided with the construction and completion of the project has been very satisfying.” St. Pius X School was opened in 1955 and until 1960, St. Pius X operated as a mission of St. Benedict Church in Greensboro. Mass was celebrated in the chapel of the school beginning in the fall of 1956. In July 1960, St. Pius X separated from St. Benedict Church and became an independent parish of the Raleigh diocese with 330 families.

Fifty years later, St. Pius X has 1,783 families and counting. As an original member of St. Pius X, parishioner Leo Kelleher recalled the early days of celebrating Mass in the school’s chapel. “Since I went to Mass in the school chapel prior to the church officially becoming a parish, I asked Monsignor if those Masses counted and he responded by asking if a collection was taken,” Kelleher joked. “When I told him that there was, he informed me that, yes, indeed, they did count then!” More than 50 years later, Kelleher continues to attend Mass at St. Pius X and remains active in the parish, even contributing a regular history column in the parish newsletter. “God has allowed us to grow with Him, both physically and spiritually,” Kelleher said. “Looking back over the years, I’ve enjoyed remembering what has happened at our church and how huge it has turned out to be. Being able to still experience and enjoy it is a real blessing.” As St. Pius X has continued to grow, so have the number of ministries and participation in those ministries. More than 50 percent of registered parishioners this year have been involved in more than 85 parish ministries. “St. Pius is a vibrant parish with many ministries that serve and empower our community and the Church,” Monsignor Marcaccio said. “As the physical size and numbers of our parishioners have increased, so too has the level of participation. One task to keep before us is the two hallmarks of our parish ministry:

hospitality and stewardship.” From Jubilee Weekend – started in 1981 for parishioners to come together to get to know themselves, their Church, others and stewardship in a deeper way – to helping educate children in the church’s sister parish in Manazo, Peru, St. Pius X has continued to broaden its dedication to stewardship over the past 50 years. “We need to continue to extend the ministries we have and pass our faith on,” Kelleher said when discussing his thoughts on the parish’s future. “The secret is passing St. Pius X on from one generation to the next, teaching them that giving is a part of life and giving to God is most important.” And one of the newest generation of parishioners was almost born in the church – literally. “I went into labor with my youngest son during a Sunday Mass,” parishioner Janel Murray said. “Interestingly enough, my doctor was sitting a few pews away from me. If that’s not God telling you that there is something special about St. Pius X, then I don’t know what is.” As each new generation comes to St. Pius X, there is no doubt that the next 50 years of the parish will continue to be a celebration, as well as a time to grow. “Our patron St. Pius X had as his motto ‘To renew all things in Christ,’” Monsignor Marcaccio said. “This has been the theme for this milestone moment in the life of the parish. The Golden Jubilee represents not just completion of 50 years of ministry, but the occasion to begin again and renew in Christ.”


8 | December 17, 2010 OUR PARISHES 

December 17, 2010 | 


Celebrating Our Lady of Guadalupe

With unified voices, Lay Ministry graduates commit to service For the first time, program also offered fully in Spanish Mollie Gordon Correspondent

HICKORY — “One bread, one body, one voice” became the theme of the Lay Ministry Celebration of Commitment Mass at the Hickory Conference Center Dec. 6. Rev. Monsignor Mauricio West, vicar general and chancellor of the Diocese of Charlotte, celebrated the Mass for the 113 Lay Ministry graduates. The Mass was the culmination of two years of study for the Lay Ministry Class of 2008-2010, a class offered by the diocese and funded in part by the annual Diocesan Support Appeal (DSA). The English program was held at four sites: Charlotte, Greensboro, Lenoir, and Bryson City. This was the first year the program was offered also in Spanish, and 30 of the graduates were in the Spanish program. “It is a formational program that helps people to better understand their faith so they can more fully respond to their baptismal call,” said diocesan program

director Frank Villaronga. “The important thing is not what they know but how they live out that knowledge.” While the Lay Ministry program is a pre-requisite for diaconate training, it is not limited to those discerning that vocation. “I think every adult should experience the Lay Ministry program. It is an in-depth approach that enriches every aspect of your faith,” said Ray Ragusky of the Greensboro class. The bilingual Mass illustrated the combination of these five classes through both prayer and music. Rev. Monsignor West celebrated the Mass seamlessly in both languages, and the intercessory prayers were spoken in both Spanish and English. And it was the sound of the Lord’s Prayer being recited in each participant’s chosen language that most reflected the unified voice of the Body of Christ. “We finished at the exact same time, using the same inflections,” said Barbara Gaddy, one of the program’s instructors. “It was so beautiful to me. I was moved by the feeling of the one voice.”

A blessed Christmas to all!

photo provided by Barbara Gaddy

Graduates of the Diocese of Charlotte’s Lay Ministry program received their certificates Dec. 6 at the Catholic Conference Center in Hickory. Rev. Monsignor Mauricio West, vicar general and chancellor, congratulated each of the 113 graduates. Each Lay Ministry participant is involved in parish ministry, whether as faith formation instructors, RCIA leaders, marriage preparation leaders, parish council members, or as parents. While the program brings together people from across the diocese, graduates were reminded by Rev. Monsignor West to take what they had learned back to their parishes and homes.

They all received certificates, further acknowledging their preparation and commitment to ministry. Once all the certificates were dispersed, the graduates were asked to stand and fully commit to living their ministry in their parishes. And they were asked to carry their ministry to diverse cultures, a further recognition of Christ’s one voice to all.

photo provided by Richard Sierra

Members of the Hispanic community in the Charlotte region gathered at Bojangles’ Coliseum to celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe Dec. 11. The festivities included a Mass celebrated by Our Lady of Guadalupe Church’s pastor, Father Vincent Finnerty, traditional Mexican dance performances and a procession. Above, two people re-enact the story of St. Juan Diego. The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to Juan Diego on Tepeyac Hill outside Mexico City in December of 1531 and asked that a church be built there in her honor. He told his story to the local bishop, but the bishop didn’t believe this poor, uneducated man and he asked for proof. So Mary told Juan Diego to gather some flowers from the top of Tepeyac Hill. It was winter and no flowers bloomed, but on the hilltop Diego found flowers of every sort, and the Virgin herself arranged them in his tilma, or peasant cloak. When Juan Diego opened his cloak before the bishop on Dec. 12, the flowers fell to the floor, and in their place was the Virgin of Guadalupe, miraculously imprinted on the fabric. It was the start of an amazing conversion to Christianity of the native Aztecs. Today Our Lady of Guadalupe is the beloved patroness of Mexico and the Americas, and the shrine in Mexico City is the most visited Catholic pilgrimage destination in the world.

Tim Reid | Catholic News Herald

The Basilica of St. Lawrence in Asheville celebrated the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe with a Mass and fiesta Dec. 12. Pictured beating a drum and wearing traditional Mexican dress is parishioner Jose Juan Matmaz.

sueann howell | catholic news herald photo provided by Mariella Buscaglia

Parishioners at St. Mark Church in Huntersville paid tribute to the Virgin of Guadalupe last weekend with a re-enactment of the Marian apparitions to St. Juan Diego, and a Mass was celebrated by Monsignor Richard Bellow, pastor.

Bill Washington | Catholic News Herald

The faithful participate in a procession down Lumen Christi Lane to Sacred Heart Church in Salisbury during last weekend’s local celebration of the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The procession was led by Father John Putnam, pastor.

Father Frank O’Rourke celebrated the fifth-annual all-school Mass in honor of the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe for St. Gabriel School students, parents and parishioners at St. Gabriel Church in Charlotte Dec. 10. Pictured with Father O’Rourke are eight students from the school who dressed as St. Juan Diego and the Blessed Virgin Mary as part of a re-enactment of the miracle of Our Lady’s appearance in Mexico City in 1531.


10 | December 17, 2010 OUR PARISHES 


City, where there is a conservatory,” Stratemeyer says, speaking of Dr. John Obetz, a well-known classical music radio show host whose program called “The Auditorium Organ” was broadcast for 25 years. Because of his affiliation with Obetz, Stratemeyer was able to play on the actual instrument, the Auditorium Organ, located in the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Independence, Mo., while he was a student at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. That was the first well-known organ he had the privilege to play. Obetz also put Stratemeyer in contact with world-renowned French organist Marie-Claire Alain of Paris. Stratemeyer studied under Alain in Europe for two years after graduating from the Conservatory of Music at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. During his time abroad, he traveled to Germany, Great Britain, Italy and France, playing music on the very organs that had been used to compose sacred music for churches throughout Europe.

“I had access to historic instruments that were invaluable to my research,” Stratemeyer says. “To sit down and play music on the instrument that it was created on was really exciting.” When Stratemeyer returned to the U.S., he entered the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester in New York to earn his Master of Music and his Doctor of Musical Arts degrees. So how did a boy from the Midwest, who studied at prestigious music schools in the U.S. and played on historic pipe organs throughout Europe, end up in Charlotte? “The network of musicians around the country is such that at the time I was looking to find a place to work, St. Patrick’s was looking for a musician. One of my classmates who grew up in this area was interested in the opening but decided he wanted to travel instead. I knew one of the priests on staff at the cathedral, Father Ken Whittington, who is a musician. Father Frank O’Rourke was the rector who was a supporter of music. He wanted to establish a program that would help music to be a part of the cathedral … to be an important part in the life of the Church. Father O’Rourke contacted Eastman after my friend declined and I interviewed for the position.” In the 19 years that Stratemeyer has been at the cathedral, he has found

parishioners to be warm and welcoming. “We have tried to keep music as a part of the liturgy on a regular basis, to keep it as an ongoing part of the life of the Church. Our choir sings at Mass and on holy days of obligation. Their dedication is really tremendous.” Under his leadership, St. Patrick Cathedral has hosted choirs from around the U.S. For the past 20 years, the American Guild of Organists (AGO) performs a summer series of organ recitals at the cathedral and churches in the area from June through August. Civic choirs give concerts there as well. Nova Voce, a women’s choir, has given a Christmas concert at the cathedral for the past five years. Stratemeyer himself is a familiar figure at the annual sacred music concert at the diocese’s Eucharistic Congress each fall. He directs the 100-plus voice choir and serves as accompanist. He also plays the organ at the many weddings, funerals and diocesan liturgies that take place throughout the year at the cathedral. Speaking of music as ministry and sharing one’s gifts, Stratemeyer says, “When a person sings or plays music, it engages both body and soul. It is an opportunity to share from within yourself the gifts that have been given to you.”

What’s Dr. Larry listening to this Christmas? Dr. Larry Stratemeyer, music director at St. Patrick Cathedral in Charlotte, recommends these three CDs to get you in the holiday spirit: n “Christmas Night” by the Cambridge Singers n “Sing We Christmas” by Chanticleer n “From the Vaults of Westminster Cathedral” by Westminster Cathedral

What music is he planning at the cathedral? Dr. Larry says, “If you come to the cathedral this Christmas, you are likely to hear ‘O Holy Night’ (Adam), along with traditional carols such as ‘O Come All Ye Faithful,’ ‘Joy to the World’ and ‘Silent Night.’” On the organ, he will play “In Dulci Jubilo” by Bach and “Noels” by Daquin and Balbastre. For a complete schedule of Christmas Masses at the cathedral, see page 14.

December 17, 2010 | 


A LEGACY OF LOVE! A GIFT OF LIFE As we celebrate Maria’s 55th birthday and Holy Angels’ 55th Anniversary on December 20th, we honor Maria who leaves behind a remarkable legacy of love, a legacy that is alive in every child and adult who calls Holy Angels home. This is truly a life affirming ministry.

Our Christmas Wishes To You God’s hand reveals a divine plan; a holy birth of infinite worth. A child’s face radiant with the grace of an angel’s embrace. A child born to reveal, God’s miraculous plan to heal. A child’s humble nativity, gives birth to a loving legacy. Regina Moody, President & our Holy Angels Family

Holy Angels lives its mission & touches the hearts of those most in need. Share the spirit of Christmas with a FINANCIAL GIFT of $55 in honor of Holy Angels’ 55th Anniversary and in Memory of Maria as we remember her on her 55th birthday. Your Christmas gift will help Holy Angels continue providing quality & innovative services for children and adults with intellectual developmental disabilities, many of whom are medically fragile—today and for years to come. sueann howell | catholic news herald

SueAnn Howell | Catholic News Herald

Warmth for the littlest among us

St. Luke Church donates Christmas food

Handmade baby quilts sewn by Debbie Doyle, a parishioner at Holy Spirit Church in Denver, were recently donated to the Respect Life Office at the Diocese of Charlotte. Alicia Garcia (left) of the Refugee Resettlement Office of Catholic Social Services is pictured accepting the quilts from Maggi Nadol (right) of the diocesan Respect Life Office. The quilts will be given to babies of families who have resettled in the diocese.

On Dec. 13 parishioners at St. Luke Church in Mint Hill donated more than 100 boxes of food for families in need this Christmas. The boxes contained non-perishable items for the holiday as well as extra food supplies. One hundred gift cards to Walmart were also donated.


12 December 17, 2010 |



Out with the old, in with the older photos by Doreen Sugierski

Holy Spirit Church in Denver is rediscovering tradition, thanks to its pastor, Father Carmen Malacari, and donations from parishioners. The church’s interior has been given a vibrant new look, and vintage statues from around the world impart a sense of reverence and spiritual beauty.


The top photo shows the interior of Holy Spirit Church before the renovations began. Below, the curtain behind the altar serves to remind the congregation of the curtain of the Temple in Jerusalem, with the red fabric representing the blood of Jesus. This high altar, or altar of repose, dates from the early 1900s and came from Sacred Heart Church in Elyria, Ohio. Father Malacari explains, “In an attempt to modernize we have lost signs and symbols of our faith. To make good use of closed churches, we reuse and give new life to items such as pews, windows, doors, statues and altars, bringing forward the craftsmanship of the past.”

Before | December 17, 2010 Father Malacari is bringing statuary into the church because he feels many churches have become devoid of these treasures of our Catholic heritage. In a recent letter to parishioners, he wrote, “Many of our children grow up today without knowledge of who or what a saint is ... It is my hope that the statuary common in many traditional Catholic churches will inspire in one’s meditation and prayers.” This statue is of St. Anthony of Padua. The statue of Our Lady, Queen of Heaven came from a closed church in Kansas. As she points to Jesus, Mary teaches us the importance of being obedient to God’s will.

This statue, from a closed church in New York, shows St. Joseph with a lily in his hand, a symbol of the pure and chaste life he lived.

Holy Spirit Church in Denver has been growing steadily as more families move into the area, often from northern cities. Father Carmen Malacari has decided to change the “country” feel of the church to a more traditional, sacred and inspirational style. Above, the beautiful Sacred Heart figure above the altar is an Italian Daprato statue with glass eyes. Jesus, with His welcoming arms extended and heart exposed, reminds us of the depth of His love and the sacrifice of His life on the cross for us. As Deacon Jim Atkinson and Father Malacari celebrate Mass among the antique additions to the church, the richness of Catholic tradition and heritage come together.


“In Vatican II’s document on Sacred Liturgy, we read that, ‘Sacred art is true and beautiful when it evokes and glorifies in faith and adoration the transcendent mystery of God. This spiritual beauty of God is reflected in the most holy Virgin Mother of God, the angels and the saints.’ The late Holy Father John Paul II said, ‘that we would all do well to reacquaint ourselves visually with the art of the past epochs

When the pews in the nave are full, worshipers attend Mass in a nearby overflow room, called Covenant Hall. The dark paneled walls have been repainted, and creaky floors have been repaired or replaced to create a reverent extension of the main worship space.

The main entrance has been transformed into a beautiful narthex. New carpeting, lighting, furniture and paint have given this space a spiritual and welcoming feel.

dedicated to the glory of God and the spread of the Gospel.’” — Father Carmen Malacari

Purchased through eBay, this Pièta in Covenant Hall came from the Netherlands. It was originally commissioned in the 1880s by the Italian artist Santini and reminds us of the time that Jesus was taken down from the cross and placed in the arms of Mary for the last time. Parish donations in remembrance of loved ones provided the funding for these beautiful works of religious art.

St. Thérèse of Lisieux is a Deprato statue from Italy made in the early 19th century, when master craftsmen lovingly and patiently created these works of art after prayer and fasting. She lived in the latter part of the 1800s in France, entered the convent of Notre-Dame-du-Pre as a Carmelite nun and is the patroness of priests and missionaries.


Our schools 14

December 17, 2010 | 

catholic news herald

15 | December 17, 2010 CATHOLIC NEWS HERALD 

In Brief

BMHS coach wins award KERNERSVILLE — David Seidel of Bishop McGuinness High School in Kernersville has been named a Diamond Award winner by the National Forensic League, one of only eight high school educators nationwide this year. An NFL Diamond Award recognizes a professional career that combines excellence and longevity in coaching high school or middle school speech and debate activities. On June 17, 2011, he will receive special recognition at the Lincoln Financial Group/NFL National Speech and Debate Tournament in Dallas, Texas. Each year, the tournament draws more than 5,000 students, coaches and parents from across the U.S.

Hey, it’s St. Nick! photo provided by anthony hartis

Christ the King High School plan moves forward On Dec. 9, officials from the Mecklenburg Area Catholic Schools office and the Diocese of Charlotte hosted a founders reception for students and families who have registered to attend Christ The King High School in the fall of 2011. Dan Dolan, the new project developer for the proposed high school, hopes to oversee an increase in the number of enrolled students for the freshman class, which currently stands at 51 students with projections to reach 100 students. More information about the new Catholic high school, designed to accommodate the growth north of Charlotte, can be found at

— Katie Boswell photo provided by Leila Goddard

HIGH POINT — On Dec. 6, Immaculate Heart of Mary School celebrated the feast day of St. Nicholas. Dressed as the famous saint, Father Joseph C. Zuschmidt passed out candy to the pre-kindergarten students.

Helping Hands of Mercy The younger students of Our Lady of Mercy School’s “Helping Hands of Mercy� ministry baked more than 90 dozen cookies for the families of the patients at Hospice House in Winston-Salem for Christmas. This is the fourth-annual bake-off conducted by the pre-kindergarten through third-grade students. Older students volunteer each year making luminary kits to benefit children staying at the local Ronald McDonald House. Students also collected money and purchased books to donate to the U.S. Marine Corps’ literacy program.

— Mendy Yarborough

Diocesan Hispanic Communications Coordinator

The Very Reverend Christopher Roux, Rector Rev. Mr. Nicholas Fadero Deacon

CHRISTMAS EVE MASSES 3:30 p.m. – Children’s pageant 4 p.m. - Children's Mass 6:30 p.m. - Mass 11:30 p.m. - Carols Midnight Mass Bishop Peter Jugis, Celebrant CHRISTMAS DAY MASSES 9 a.m.- Mass 11 a.m. Mass Bishop Peter Jugis, Celebrant NEW YEAR'S DAY MASSES (Solemnity Mary Mother of God Holy Day of Obligation) 9 a.m., 11 a.m EPIPHANY OF THE LORD 6 p.m. – Lessons & Carols 1621 Dilworth Road East Charlotte, NC 28203 (704) 334-2283 Visit our website at

Rev. Mr. Carlos Medina Deacon

CCHS donates Christmas toys Charlotte Catholic High School students and faculty loaded up a CCHS schoolbus to deliver toys and bikes to Catholic Social Services of the Diocese of Charlotte for children in need on Dec. 13.

OLG students learn about iconography GREENSBORO — Linda Williams, the library assistant at Our Lady of Grace School in Greensboro, has been teaching second-graders about religious icons using the book “The Kitchen Madonna� by Rumer Godden. After hearing the story, students spent several weeks creating their own icons, featuring the Blessed Mother and baby Jesus. They used a variety of materials, including fabric scraps and crayons, and the best icons were chosen in a contest. Winners pictured are Benjamin Smith, Corbin Rusch Jr. and Thomas Markun, along with Williams. — Karen Hornfeck

Vocal ensemble performs GREENSBORO — Our Lady of Grace School’s middle school vocal ensemble performed for the first time Dec. 3, in a performance conducted by Kathleen King. The middle school vocal ensemble is a collaborative effort between Our Lady of Grace School and the UNC-Greensboro Department of Music Education. OLG parent Cheryl Tumlin brought together Dr. Brett Nolker from UNC-G with Joyce Carroll, OLG music teacher, to develop the program. — Gary Gelo

photo provided by Gary Gelo

A visit from St. Nicholas Students at Our Lady of Grace School in Greensboro celebrated the Feast of St. Nicholas with candy cane treats as St. Nicholas (portrayed by eighth-grade students Caleb Carmichael and Zach Palenchar) traveled the hallways putting treats in the shoes of younger students. St. Nicholas also visited classrooms and students reviewed the life of St. Nicholas and why he is remembered today. Pictured are Katherine Scaramastra, Zachary Gonzalez, Carmichael and Palenchar, Sarah Mims and Ivy Schulze.

The Diocese of Charlotte is seeking a bi-lingual (Spanish/English) individual to coordinate communication to the Hispanic people of the diocese. Details and resume submission at

photo provided by Mary Ealley

Girl Scouts in action Girl Scout Troop 1076 in Greensboro recently sold handmade ornaments and hair bows at the St. Pius X School holiday market to raise money to benefit Red Dog Farm as part of the troop’s work towards a Bronze Award.


920 Carmichael St., Chapel Hill, NC 27514




In theaters

Cool new Web sites to check out New Bible app The Children’s Bible app, downloadable from, is a free universal app for iPad, iPhone or iPod touch. It provides an easy way to talk about Jesus and God with children. The Children’s Bible is available in traditional words on a page view or with basic animation and voices of the characters. Either version is available in seven languages. Each week, the app provides free content covering the most important passages of sacred history and the Gospels. Premium content is also available.

‘The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader’ Swashbuckling sequel, combining live action and animation, in which a brother and sister (Skandar Keynes and Georgie Henley) from World War II-era Britain are again transported to the titular world, this time accompanied by their obnoxious, cynical cousin (Will Poulter). Reunited with their friend, the king of Narnia (Ben Barnes), the siblings join his quest to vanquish a menacing manifestation of evil in this screen version of the third in C.S. Lewis’ classic series of Christian-themed allegorical novels. Peril and bloodless violence, mild bathroom jokes. CNS: A-II (adults and adolescents), MPAA: PG

‘The Fighter’ Director David O. Russell’s fact-based drama follows two half-brothers from Lowell, Mass., who long for success – and redemption – via the boxing ring. Excessive boxing and other violence, nongraphic premarital sexual activity, drug use, profanity. CNS: L (limited adult audience), MPAA: R

catholic news heraldI

December 17, 2010 | 

Surf the Web, support your faith A new Web portal will give Catholics a tiny portion of the billions of dollars being spent by Web surfers and shoppers. provides a seamless Google-powered Web search and online shopping experience. Through the use of, online shoppers can link directly to their favorite

Web retailers and online stores. Each time a purchase is made a portion of the sale goes directly to, which then donates 100 percent of funds raised to Catholic charities.

New site for book about pope WASHINGTON, D.C. — Popebenedictbook. com, a new Web site dedicated to a book on Pope Benedict XVI’s papacy, has launched under the sponsorship of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in conjunction with its new book “Benedict XVI: Essays and Reflections on His Papacy.” The site provides a tour of the new book with a photo gallery and excerpts from its essays and personal reflections. The book Pope Benedict XVI includes more than 100 fullcolor photographs showing Pope Benedict in formal public appearances and in quiet moments of personal study or contemplation.

‘The Calling’ explores the sacrifices of a religious vocation John Mulderig Catholic News Service

NEW YORK — Despite their diversity in other respects, most of the world’s major religions rely on the leadership of dedicated individuals who feel called by God to serve their community as members of the clergy. The often challenging process of academic education and personal formation involved in responding to such a vocation is the focus of the four-hour documentary “The Calling.” Directed by Daniel Alpert – and presented as part of the series “Independent Lens,” hosted by America Ferrera – the film airs on PBS stations in two parts, Monday, Dec. 20, and Tuesday, Dec. 21, 9-11 p.m. EST each night (check local listings). With a broad scope that takes in the struggles of seven individuals, including Muslims, Jews, Protestants and one candidate for the Catholic priesthood, the narrative feels somewhat diffuse at

the start. But viewers willing to stay the course will get to know – and likely connect with – the generally appealing subjects profiled as they grapple with an array of problems. Father Steven Gamez, first encountered on the morning of his ordination as a transitional deacon at San Antonio’s San Fernando Cathedral, ably and engagingly represents youthful priesthood. Avowing his desire to be among the vast majority of good priests whose work for others generally goes unheralded in the media, he acknowledges the sacrifice involved in committing himself to celibacy. At a party following his priestly ordination, however, he memorably concludes: “I love women, but I love God more.” References to sexuality – and especially a scene in which Father Gamez counsels the family of a young man suspected of having molested his sister – restrict the appropriate audience for this illuminative study of the varied paths to ministry (TV-PG – parental guidance suggested).

On TV n Wednesday, Dec. 22, 9 a.m. (EWTN) “Christmas with the Nuns.” Join the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration from Our Lady of the Angels Monastery in Hanceville, Ala., for special Christmas music and devotions. n Saturday, Dec. 18, 10:30 a.m. (EWTN) “The Story of the Selfish Giant.” A grandfather uses Oscar Wilde’s timeless tale to unlock the true meaning of Christmas for his granddaughter. As the selfish giant learns in this story of love and sacrifice, God’s unselfish gift of His Son fills us with joy. Rebroadcast 4 p.m. Dec. 23, and 4 p.m. Dec. 29.


Under Thurbee’s leadership, programs such as burial assistance, international adoption, counseling services, elder ministry, family life services, the food pantry, refugee resettlement, licensure of adoption services in South Carolina, and educational programs for the Office of Justice and Peace have evolved. The Diocese of Charlotte Housing Corporation, specializing in low-income housing for the elderly, was also established.


More than 80 full- and part-time employees now work in Catholic Social Services for the diocese in offices located in Asheville, Charlotte, Greensboro, Murphy and Winston-Salem. They serve the people who come to CSS for a variety of needs. Just as importantly they reach out to them in kindness to affirm their value and restore their dignity. “I formed a management team to be able to look at the needs in each one of the areas where the agencies operate, and helped design the services in each agency n Monday, Dec. 20, 5:30 a.m. (EWTN) “Path of the Messiah.” office to be very responsive to the needs An EWTN documentary follows of the particular communities,” Thurbee says. Raymond Arroyo and Jeff Carter says, “One of the genuine Cavins retracing the footsteps pleasures and privileges of my of Our Lord. Part One begins this dramatic and beautiful journey into Christ’s homeland, accompanied by their reflections on the Messiah’s mission and ministry. Rebroadcast 2 a.m. Dec. 22. n Tuesday, Dec. 21, 10 a.m. (EWTN) “Life is Worth Living: The True Meaning of Christmas.” With Archbishop Sheen. Rebroadcast 4:30 p.m. Dec. 25. n Friday, Dec. 24, 4-6 p.m. (EWTN) “Solemn Mass of Christmas Eve with Pope Benedict XVI.” Mass with the pope live from St. Peter’s Basilica. Re-aired Dec. 25, 8-10 a.m. and 6-8 p.m. n Saturday, Dec. 25, 6 a.m. (EWTN) “Urbi et Orbi.” Live from St. Peter’s Square, join Pope Benedict XVI for his inspiring Christmas Day message. Rebroadcasts: 10 p.m. Dec. 25; 10 a.m. Dec. 26; and 9 p.m. Dec. 31. n Friday, Dec. 31, noon-1:30 p.m. (EWTN) “Vespers of Thanksgiving.” Pope Benedict XVI will preside at this yearend thanksgiving service. n Saturday, Jan. 1, 4-6:30 a.m. (EWTN) “Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God.” Mass with the pope, live from St. Peter’s Basilica. Re-aired 12-2:30 p.m.

professional life has been the opportunity to work with Elizabeth. She is an individual who epitomizes the dedication of staff to the work of Catholic Social Services and to the clients we serve.”


Thurbee, a mother of four and grandmother of three, reflects on her relationship with her Catholic Social Services family: “If I were to say there was any kind of a hallmark of my work at Catholic Social Services, it has been my strong belief that there was a purpose for me to be here. It has been a very reciprocal kind of relationship, because the work that I have done here and the people I have worked with have been so important to me in some of the most tragic times in my life.” In 1985, Thurbee’s son Allan died of cancer when he was just 7, and her husband Lee died suddenly in 1991. The best way to memorialize them and see the work of CSS continue into the future, she has decided, is to set up an endowment in their names to help fund the work of CSS. “I had always wanted to do something that would be a memorial to them yet also be an ongoing benefit to Catholic Social Services,” she says. “I was asked by several people when they heard of my retirement what I might like. I have been very blessed, so all I can ask is if someone wanted to remember me, to remember me through the endowment in Allan and Lee’s names.”

In this second concert of the Gaudium Musicae Series, St. Ann Catholic Church is pleased to present


CNH: What is that you want people to do when they see a Catholics Come Home commercial? Peterson: If they are an inactive Catholic, we’d love for them to take another look and to come home. We really want them to know that God loves them and that He has a plan for their lives. For non-Catholics, we’d like for them to take a look at the Catholic faith, the faith that Jesus Himself started 2,000 years ago. Ours is the Church that, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, brought the world the Bible. For current Catholics, we’d like for them to take a look and go deeper in their faith, to go deeper in their spiritual quest – because our world is truly in need of more hope and spreading the Good News of Jesus in a more deeper and profound way. CNH: What will Catholics here experience once they start seeing the commercials? Peterson: Generally, we see an increase in Mass attendance of about 10 percent,


sometimes as high as 18 percent. For some reason dioceses that have a high Hispanic population have a higher increase of returnees. Current Catholics say the ads make them proud to be Catholic. Inactive Catholics tend to be deeply touched and they say, “I feel God was personally calling me home and I rushed to Mass or confession.” Non-Catholics say, “I have church shopped or church swapped a lot... but this intrigues me. I think I am going to take a look at the Catholic faith.” CNH: Catholics Come Home campaigns have taken place in 30 dioceses so far. Do you have plans for a national campaign? Peterson: From day one, we’ve always felt that airing the spots nationally and consistently would be a good idea. Our brothers in the United Methodist Church have done this for years. The Mormons have ads, even Tom Cruise’s Scientology buddies are now launching ads. The atheists have billboards. It’s about time we Catholics put out a consistent message of truth about the wonderful faith that Jesus brought us. We are looking at Advent of 2011 as the most likely date for our first national launch, but it is up to God’s good pleasure.

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The Charlotte Children's Choir Sunday, January 9th at 4 pm St. Ann Catholic Church 3635 Park Road, Charlotte This Sunday afternoon concert, followed by a reception, will feature the mixed voices of the select Chamber Ensemble and the young men of Cantare. The choir serves children between the ages of 8 to 18 by providing the highest level of excellence in choral music. Tickets: $12- adults; $8 – students; children 12 and under are free. Sponsorship opportunities are available.

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Our nation

18 | December 17, 2010 CATHOLIC NEWS HERALD 

2010 Looking back

In brief Archbishop Gregory named moderator for Jewish affairs WASHINGTON, D.C. — Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory of Atlanta has succeeded Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York as moderator of Jewish affairs for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Archbishop Dolan resigned the post after his Nov. 16 election as USCCB president.

U.S. President Barack Obama signs the health care reform legislation in late March during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington, D.C.

Bishop Noonan installed ORLANDO, Fla. — Bishop John G. Noonan was installed to lead the Diocese of Orlando, Fla., Dec. 16.

Catholics down in Congress WASHINGTON, D.C. — With more than three dozen Catholic Democrats voted out of office or choosing not to run in the last election, a decline in the number of Catholics in the 112th Congress would seem inevitable. But the decrease is not steep, because of the 33 new Catholic Republicans preparing to take office when the 112th Congress convenes Jan. 3. The number of Catholics in the new Congress will be 150, compared to the 162 Catholics in the 111th Congress. Catholics will now make up about 28 percent of Congress members, down from to 30 percent. For the first time in recent memory, the number of Catholic Republicans in the House – 61 – nearly equals the number of Catholic Democratic House members, 65. — Catholic News Service


December 17, 2010 | 

CNS | Jason Reed, Reuters

Year brings health care reform law and ‘wound to Church’s unity’ Nancy Frazier O’Brien Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON, D.C. — This year will be known in many circles as the year of health reform. Among Catholics, it might also be known as the year that caused, as Chicago Cardinal Francis E. George said in his final talk as president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, a “wound to the Church’s unity.” USCCB leaders clashed with the head of the Catholic Health Association and the superiors of some U.S. orders of women religious over whether the Patient Protection

and Affordable Care Act and an executive order signed by President Barack Obama would permit federal funding for abortion, force people to pay for the abortions of others through their health insurance or violate the conscience rights of Catholic health providers and institutions. Addressing fellow bishops Nov. 15, Cardinal George said “developments since the passage of the legislation” have confirmed “our analysis of what the law itself says was correct and our moral judgments are secure.” He did not specify those developments. In a Nov. 23 talk at the University of

San Francisco, Sister Carol Keehan, CHA president and CEO, said the legislation was “not necessarily a perfect” law, but she was convinced it would not fund abortion. Since Obama signed it into law March 23, only a few of the law’s provisions have taken effect. Implementation is to continue through 2014, but there are several court challenges and continued calls to repeal it. The bishops – who have supported some kind of health reform for decades – have not backed calls for the law’s repeal but have supported two pieces of proposed legislation that they believe could fix some of the problems.

New English missal approved

Coming soon The Catholic News Herald will launch a year-long series about the new translation of the Mass starting with our Jan. 7, 2011, edition.

Nancy Frazier O’Brien Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A year from now, liturgical celebrations of the Advent and Christmas seasons will have a different sound, as the new English translation of the third edition of the Roman Missal is introduced in U.S. parishes starting Nov. 27, 2011. Work on the new translation took up most of the past decade and was not without its rough patches, with some clergy and laypeople criticizing changes meant to bring the translation more missal, SEE page 19

Green Bay bishop becomes first in U.S. to approve Marian apparitions Sam Lucero Catholic News Service

CHAMPION, Wis. — Bishop David L. Ricken of Green Bay has approved the Marian apparitions seen by Adele Brise in 1859, making the apparitions of Mary that occurred 18 miles northeast of Green Bay the first in the U.S. to get approval of a diocesan bishop. Bishop Ricken made the announcement in Champion during Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help Dec. 8. More than 250 guests filled the shrine chapel to hear Bishop Ricken read a decree on the authenticity of the apparitions and a second decree approving the shrine. As he declared, “I do hereby approve these apparitions as worthy of belief,” the congregation burst into applause. Ricken “Mary always leads us to Jesus,” Bishop Ricken said in his homily. “We hold Mary in such high regard because she is the mother of our Savior, Jesus Christ. So she is probably the greatest evangelist and catechist who ever lived.” “I think today is a gift we give back to the Blessed Mother for all the prayers she has answered in this place, all the solace and comfort she has given to troubled souls,” he said. “In many ways it is also a thank-you gift to Adele Brise, that Belgian immigrant who


closely into alignment with the Latin original. But Bishop Arthur J. Serratelli of Paterson, N.J., who, as chairman of the USCCB Committee on Divine Worship for the past three years, shepherded the missal through its final approval by the Vatican in 2010, said before leaving as chairman that

came here to this country.” He added that the message Brise answered in teaching children the faith is the same message people are called to today. “We need this message today as much as they needed it 150 years ago; the message to proclaim the Gospel, each one of us, in our families and in our workplace.” Catholics must provide children “adequate catechetical formation” so they understand the Gospel and “are able to defend and explain the teachings of the Church,” he said. Brise was 28 when Mary appeared to her three times in 1859. The first occurred while Brise was carrying a sack of wheat to a grist mill about four miles from Robinsonville, now known as Champion. A few days later, on Oct. 9, as Brise walked to Mass in Bay Settlement, about 11 miles from her home, Mary appeared again. After Mass, Brise told the pastor what she had seen. He told her to “ask in God’s name who it was and what it desired of her,” according to a historical account. On Brise’s way home, Mary again appeared. When Brise asked who she was, Mary responded, “I am the Queen of Heaven, who prays for the conversion of sinners, and I wish you to do the same.” She told Brise to “gather the children in this wild country and teach them what they should know for salvation.” Brise devoted the rest of her life to teaching children. She began a community of secular Franciscans and built a school next to the shrine. She died in 1896. The current chapel was dedicated in 1942 under the title of Our Lady of Good Help.

catechetical preparation was proceeding in U.S. parishes “with much enthusiasm and wide acceptance by both clergy and laity.” Announced by Pope John Paul II in 2000 and first published in Latin in 2002, the missal is the book of prayers used in the worship in the Latin-rite Church. U.S. Church leaders hope that clergy and lay Catholics are getting ready for the new translation with resources prepared by the U.S. bishops, online at romanmissal.

Pilgrimage with Father Kottar of St. Mary Parish in Shelby Fatima and Lourdes with Barcelona — November 7-15, 2011 Fatima • Aljustrel • Valinhos • Nazare • Alcobaca Monastery • Cathedral of Burgos • Lourdes • Massabielle • Holy Hill • Carcassone • Barcelona • La Sagrada Familia—the basilica recently blessed by Pope Benedict XVI 9 Days / 14 Meals (7 Breakfasts/1 Lunch/6 Dinners) — Daily Mass *Per Person: Double $2599/Single $2899/Triple $2569

*Included in price: Hotel transfers, Round trip air from CLT *Not included in price: Air taxes & fees/surcharges of $120 (subject to increase until paid in full), Cancellation waiver, Insurance of $150 per person.

For more information, or to register, contact the St. Mary parish office at 704-487-7697 ext. 103.

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Our world


December 17, 2010 | | December 17, 2010 CATHOLIC NEWS HERALD 

2010 Looking back

In Brief Government-run Catholic groups in China elect leaders BEIJING — Without the Vatican’s approval, the Chinese-governmentcontrolled National Congress of Catholic Representatives recently elected new leaders for the Bishops’ Conference of the Catholic Church in China and the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, the two groups responsible for the public life of the Church in the communist country. Pope Benedict XVI has said the patriotic association and the bishops’ conference, whose statutes promote “the principles of independence and autonomy, self-management and democratic administration of the Church,” are not in line with Church doctrine. Meanwhile, government officials continued ongoing surveillance of the cathedral in Cangzhou because Bishop Joseph Li Liangui did not show up for the congress in Beijing. The Asian Church news agency UCA News reported Dec. 8 that police cars were patrolling the vicinity of the cathedral and diocesan compound. Movements of clergy and religious in the cathedral compound were restricted, UCA News reported. It reported that in the days before the Congress, clergy in nearby Hebei province – a stronghold of Catholic communities that have not registered with the government – reported increased pressure to attend the congress. Bishop Li has been missing since his appearance at an illicit episcopal ordination in Chengde Nov. 20. In a 2007 letter to Chinese Catholics, the pope recognized the difficult situation of Chinese bishops and priests under pressure from the government and said the Holy See “leaves the decision to the individual bishop,” having consulted his priests, “to weigh ... and to evaluate the possible consequences” of dealing with government pressures.

Dutch Church pledges response to abuse complaints OXFORD, England — The Dutch bishops’ conference has pledged “firm action” after 1,975 people complained of sexual abuse by Catholic priests during an inquiry by an independent commission. The complaints, dating to 1945, were received by a Churchappointed commission established by the bishops launched in March to investigate abuse cases. “The Church has to take responsibility for what has happened. If the government or Parliament say this isn’t enough, they have a right to take further action,” Pieter Kohnnen, spokesman for the Utrecht-based bishops’ conference, said Dec. 10. — Catholic News Service

A young cholera victim waits for treatment inside a hospital run by Doctors Without Borders in Portau-Prince, Haiti, Nov. 15. Since the cholera outbreak began Oct. 19, more than 2,100 people have died and 92,000 have been hospitalized, the Haitian health ministry reported.

CNS | St-Felix Evens, Reuters

Vatican Christmas: It may be short on snow, but it’s big in spirit VATICAN CITY — Snowfall is a rarity and Santa Claus is seldom seen, but Christmas at the Vatican is unique. Cranes erect an enormous evergreen alongside the granite obelisk in St. Peter’s Square and workers nested in cherry picker buckets adorn the tree with lights, ornaments and tinsel. This year’s 100foot tree is decorated with 3,000 gold and silver balls, and 1,500 white and yellow LED lights, which have lower energy consumption and greater durability. The tree will be topped with a flashing star. Construction of the larger-than-life nativity scene takes weeks and yards of thick burlap keep curious eyes from seeing the final product until its unveiling on Christmas Eve. But even further from the public eye are the holiday traditions of the papal household. While Pope John Paul II had close to an open-house attitude, Pope Benedict XVI is much more discreet. Besides the public events, Pope Benedict celebrates Christmas privately with the members of

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Not much has changed around Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s capital, since a magnitude 7 earthquake leveled just about everything Jan. 12, killing 230,000 and injuring 300,000. In fact, it’s likely the 1.5 million Haitians left homeless would say life is worse. Now, besides dealing with the aftermath of the most-severe quake to hit the country

in more than 200 years, the impoverished Caribbean nation has been hit with a growing cholera outbreak. Through Dec. 4, Haiti’s health ministry reported 2,120 deaths among more than 92,200 people treated for the illness. Meanwhile, rubble still lines potholed streets in the city’s overcrowded neighborhoods. Multistory buildings, looking like stacks of pancakes, still entomb the dead. More than 1 million people remain in squalid tent camps. The Haitian Church too struggles to

New abuse reports led pope, Vatican to refine policies Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service

CNS | Paul Haring

Gary Bergeron and Paola Leerschool walk to the Vatican during a demonstration Oct. 31. The two left 75 letters from abuse victims like themselves.

VATICAN CITY — New revelations about clerical sex abuse cases, particularly in Europe, led Pope Benedict XVI and his top aides in 2010 to look for ways to refine policies for handling accusations and strengthening child protection Vatican, SEE page 24

recover. The earthquake destroyed 70 parishes, including the cathedral in Port-auPrince; dozens of schools; several convents; and the national seminary. The world’s response to Haiti’s disasters was immediate, but recovery efforts have been excruciatingly slow. In January, emergency workers from Belgium, Italy, Israel, Mexico, Canada and the U.S. rushed in to help. Catholic aid was led Recovery, SEE page 24

Violence continues to cause exodus of Mideast Christians Mark Pattison Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Violence in 2010 continued to feed the flow of Christians leaving the Middle East, with Church leaders generally agreeing that only peace would solve the problem. A shocking coda to the violent year was the attack on a Syrian Catholic cathedral in

the Iraqi capital of Baghdad Oct. 31. As police moved in to rescue Catholics held hostage by Islamic militants with ties to al-Qaida, 58 people, including two priests, were killed. At a Dec. 10 memorial Mass in Baghdad for the victims, Syrian Catholic Patriarch Ignatius Joseph III Younan referred to the cover-up of “the mideast, SEE page 24


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Don’t miss this EWTN will televise Christmas Mass live from St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. For details, see page 16.

his papal household. “We celebrate Christmas together, listen to the holiday music and exchange gifts,” he said in his recent book-length interview “Light of the World.” The close-knit papal family includes Pope Benedict’s two secretaries and a small group of women from the Memores Domini lay community who care for the papal apartment. Unfortunately, this holiday season is marked with the loss of one of the pope’s close collaborators, Manuela Camagni, who died Nov. 24 after she was struck by a car.

Quake recovery moves slowly as Haiti tackles cholera epidemic Dennis Sadowski Catholic News Service

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April 4 – 14, 2011 Let the Stable Still Astonish Let the stable still astonish; Straw-dirt floor, dull eyes, Dusty flanks of donkeys, oxen; Crumbling, crooked walls; No bed to carry that pain, And then, the child, Rag-wrapped, laid to cry In a trough. Who would have chosen this? Who would have said: “Yes, Let the God of all the heavens And earth Be born here, in this place?” Who but the same God Who stands in the darker, fouler Rooms of our hearts and says, “Yes, let the God of Heaven and Earth be born here— in this place.” - Leslie Leyland Fields

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catholic news heraldI 23

December 17, 2010 | | December 17, 2010 CATHOLIC NEWS HERALD 

Rico De Silva

Advent: Week 4, Dec. 19

Laurie Saunders

Why I wear a chapel veil


found the chapel veil buried below some old newspapers and last season’s Christmas cards. For years, its home had been an antique bureau that I inherited after my mother died six years ago. I carefully picked up the veil to look at it. I wouldn’t say that I thought it was beautiful at the time. It was white, the lace was rather plain and it had yellowed with age in some spots. After all, it had not been used since about 1963. The only reason I even know that is because I vaguely remember seeing a picture of my mother wearing it with her three daughters standing by the car, waiting for Dad to take our picture in our Easter finery before we went to church. Mom was raised a Lutheran but converted to Catholicism while working in California after World War II. On the other hand, my father’s parents divorced when my dad was 3, and to support him his mother needed to work. Dad was practically raised by his grandparents, a fire-and-brimstone Baptist preacher and his wife. When my mother returned from California to Virginia, she continued to practice her Catholic faith. However, after deciding to marry, my parents reached an impasse about what church they would attend. Their compromise was to attend and raise their family in the Episcopal Church. Once I began to understand our faith, I was particularly drawn to the Nicene and Apostles creeds. I remember asking my mother that if we believed in “one holy catholic and apostolic church,” why weren’t we Catholic? She explained loosely that “catholic” was to be interpreted as “good.” Spiritually, even at that time, I knew one day I would become Catholic. I didn’t do my best to follow my faith during college and my early adult life. But after taking a job at Mercy Hospital, when it was still owned by the Sisters of Mercy, I saw a faith being practiced every day by the sisters who comforted the sick and dying. I especially loved two older nuns who went everywhere together. They still wore the habit, and seeing them gave me a feeling of sanctuary. I started attending St. Gabriel Church with a friend. I loved the service, but it took a long time to remember to pray the “Our Father” SAUNDERS, SEE page 24

Light all four candles on the Advent wreath Read aloud: Isaiah 7:10-14; Romans 1:1-7; Matthew 1:18-24

(Leader may read all, or others in the household may each proclaim a reading.)

Leader: Way back in the time of the Prophet Isaiah; people were nervous and afraid. God reassured them that He would not abandon them by giving a sign: a virgin giving birth to a son whose name shall mean “With us is God.” The Evangelist Paul greets the Romans by explaining who he is and why he has come – to spread the teachings of that child to whom the Virgin gave birth – so that they too will be holy and enjoy salvation. Matthew’s Gospel, then, is like a flashback in a movie. Here’s how it all came about, folks. Listen, because it’s the greatest story ever told.

Letters policy The Catholic News Herald welcomes letters from readers. We ask that letters be originals of 250 words or fewer, pertain to recent newspaper content or Catholic issues, and be in good taste. To be considered for publication, each letter must include the name, address and daytime phone number of the writer for purpose of verification. Letters may be condensed due to space limitations and edited for clarity, style and factual accuracy. The Catholic News Herald does not publish poetry, form letters or

Father John Eckert

Got bread?

Advent and ‘A Christmas Carol’


esus is hungry, and all He wants for Christmas is for us to feed Him. Last month, during Thanksgiving week, I was approached by three young girls outside of a grocery store and asked if I wanted to donate money to help feed the homeless for Thanksgiving. I was impressed by the young ladies’ zeal to help the hungry, and in exchange for a small contribution, they gave me a wristband that read “End Hunger.” I wear the wristband daily now as a reminder of my Christian responsibility to help alleviate the real struggle some less fortunate men and women endure to obtain their daily bread. While Jesus said in the Gospel “For you always have the poor with you, and whenever you will, you can do good to them” (Mk 14:7), and hunger most likely will never end until His return, Mother Teresa of Calcutta used to say that Jesus “hides” in the poorest of the poor, and it was Christ whom she served in them. St. Francis of Assisi said, “The poor don’t need us. We need the poor to show God we love Him.” However, we don’t have to be mystics to recognize our obligation to perform the corporal works of mercy. All we need is to Closing prayer: heed Jesus’ words in the Gospel: “For I was hungry, and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and (Leader may read all, or others in the household may each you welcomed me,” (Mt 25:35). As with everything we do in our daily read a segment.) lives, we should ask Our Lord in prayer how He wants us to feed Him. All it requires is a (1.) Dear God, help us always to remember the reason that slight shift in our spiritual awareness in how we wait each year in such anticipation for Christmas – not for we relate to the needy in society. Perhaps, a presents, but for the greatest gift of all, your Son. good time to pray about it could be during our family meals. A simple phrase like, (2.) Holy Spirit, guide the choices we make as Christmas nears. Through all we say and do, let us be evangelists who live and model “Lord, let us be mindful of those who will go the Gospel way of life that Jesus taught when He walked this earth. without today,” could carry a lot of spiritual weight, and I’m confident the Lord will present us with ample opportunities to help (3.) Father in heaven, we offer thanks to you for the sign that others. The person ringing the bell outside Christmas is to the world – a sign that God is with us all our days, your grocery store at this time of year would in every age and time. take on a whole new meaning. Or maybe, an (4.) Come, Lord Jesus. Through our Advent prayer our lives and invitation from a fellow parishioner to help feed the homeless at the shelter this month our hearts are prepared to welcome You. Be with us, for we are could be the catalyst to encourage us to look Your people, and You are our God. beyond ourselves during the season. This Christmas time, let’s not forget that — Reprinted with permission from The Catholic Spirit of St. Paul, Minn. God chose to be born hidden in a stable and revealed Himself to the simple shepherds on that holy night. Let’s recognize the hungry Christ hidden in plain sight among us, and petitions. Items submitted to the Catholic News Herald become the property feed Him to the best of our capabilities. In that way, we will truly echo the choir of of the newspaper and are subject to reuse, in whole or in part, in print, angels when we sing on Christmas Eve, electronic formats and archives. “‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth Mail: Letters to the Editor peace among men with whom he is pleased!’” Catholic News Herald (Lk 2:14).

The following Advent wreath prayer is intended to help busy families make Advent a prayerful time during the rush of Christmas preparations Leader: It’s almost Christmas! One more time we gather to pray so that we can be better prepared to welcome the Christ Child into the world. This Fourth Week of Advent marks the beginning of the end of our waiting – the gift we’ve be longing for is almost here.

Tony Rossi

1123 S. Church St. Charlotte, N.C. 28203 E-mail:

Rico De Silva is a member of St. Gabriel Church in Charlotte.


am a big fan of Christmas movies. I have learned a lot from them over the years. For example, from “A Christmas Story,” I learned at a young age not to stick my tongue to a lamppost. From “Home Alone,” I learned several simple techniques to employ in protecting my home against thieves. But the yuletide book-turnedmovie from which I think I have learned the most is “A Christmas Carol.” Charles Dickens’ classic holiday ghost story clearly has lasting value and popular appeal, as it has been remade and shown anew many times over the years. The central role has been portrayed by several famous actors, including Alastair Sim and George C. Scott, Mr. Magoo and Scrooge McDuck, Bill Murray and Jim Carrey. While the title claims it is a Christmas story, I would propose it is a tale for Advent. Ebenezer Scrooge is invited by his four spectral visitors to examine his life, do an examination of conscience, and turn things around for the better. The ghost of Scrooge’s dead partner Jacob Marley rattles his chains, explaining, “I wear the chain I forged in life… I made it link by link, and yard by yard; I girded it on my own free-will and of my own free-will I wore it.” After this terrifying visit from the friend who suffers the fate toward which Ebenezer is heading, those timely ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future all show Scrooge where he has come from, where he is, and where he is going if things do not change. Scrooge has a complete change of heart, embraces the love that the celebration of Christmas embodies, and Tiny Tim’s classic line is heard echoing throughout the ages: “God bless us, every one!” While Scrooge has the benefit of the

visit of four ghosts, most of us will probably not get any such visit this season. Instead of four ghosts, the Church gives us four weeks of Advent, with its penitential purple and reflective atmosphere of anticipation, during which we have the opportunity to examine our own lives. It is worthwhile to think about Jacob Marley’s chains and reflect on what kind of links we may be forging that hold us back from loving and serving God and one another. Even though we may not be swept away in the middle of the night by phantom friends, we should still take the time to reflect on how we arrived where we are today, for better or for worse, whether we are thankful for the gifts of the present moment, and where our lives will lead us if we keep going on our present course. We all have the potential within us to be like Scrooge – whether previsited, rotten Scrooge, or post-visited, joy-filled Scrooge. In this final week of Advent, do not let the hectic schedules, the anxiety, or the busyness that inevitably come this time of year keep you from fully entering into this season of preparation. If you have not done so already, take advantage of the gift of the sacrament of confession, humbly acknowledge your failings, receive absolution, and come away ready to celebrate Christmas to the fullest. We may not get to converse with ghosts or fly through the late-night London air, but by the grace of God, we can cast off the chains of sin, thank God for His countless gifts, especially the gift of His Son, and make that famous phrase of Tiny Tim’s our own this Christmas: “God bless us, every one!” Father John Eckert is parochial vicar at Our Lady of Grace Church in Greensboro.

A new family this Christmas


couple of months ago on our Christopher Closeup radio show/ podcast, I had the privilege of highlighting the story of a young woman whose Christmas this year will be brighter than she ever could have imagined. This past April, 21-year-old Haylee Cain lay in her bed in an Alabama nursing home for senior citizens, feeling alone and hopeless. Afflicted with a form of cerebral palsy, she wasn’t able to stand and had limited use of her hands. Though Haylee had previously lived with her grandfather, his own health problems kept him from caring for her anymore. Haylee ended up in the nursing home because Alabama has no state agency for people 21 or older “who suffer from physical, rather than intellectual, disabilities.” One day, Michelle Eubanks from the local newspaper got in touch with Haylee because she wanted to write a story about her situation. Haylee agreed, thinking it might help others who found themselves in similar dire straits. The morning the article was published, Donna and Judson Emens recognized Haylee’s picture. Donna had been her aide in the local Head Start program when Haylee was five. The youngster often spent weekends with the Emens who came to admire her unconquerable spirit. When Haylee moved to Texas to live with extended family, Donna lost touch with her. Reading that Haylee’s nursing home was only 10 minutes away, Donna rushed over. The excitement of seeing each other again moved both women to tears. During my interview with Donna, she recalled Haylee telling her, “I don’t belong behind these walls. I belong out there.” Donna knew immediately that she had to do something. When she got home, Judson suggested that Haylee live with them. Though the intention was good, it wouldn’t be easy. The couple was already in the process of adopting a 3-year-old girl named Nadia. Their house was small and not particularly handicapfriendly. Donna, however, felt inspired by God to make the attempt because she grew up with a brother who had Down Syndrome. Though he died five years ago, she had always seen him as the light of her life. This was an opportunity to bring light to someone else’s life. The new environment has done wonders for Haylee. Whereas before, she couldn’t stand on her own or feed herself, she is now improving in both those areas. The Emens’ lives have ROSSi, SEE page 24

24 | December 17, 2010 CATHOLIC NEWS HERALD 







programs. In a pastoral letter to Catholics in Ireland, at a Mass marking the end of the Year for Priests, in speeches and in meetings with victims of abuse in Malta and in Great Britain, Pope Benedict acknowledged the horror of abuse and the shame of a slow Church response. As 2010 drew to a close, he called the College of Cardinals to a meeting at the Vatican where the Church’s response to the scandal was one of the topics and where it was announced that the Vatican is planning new guidelines to ensure a “coordinated and effective program” for protecting children. As he closed the Year For Priests in June, the pope said that what had been planned as a year of celebration became a “summons to purification.” The pope’s approach to the scandal consistently has been to see it as a result of serious sin that has polluted the Church; the process of cleansing must be serious and profound, he said, but it also must acknowledge Christ’s power to heal and strengthen the Church.


become more physically demanding since Haylee often needs to be lifted up or carried. The effort is worth the reward, though. Donna said, “She is far more a blessing to us than we are to her.” After Donna and I completed our interview, she briefly put Haylee on the phone. Working in radio has taught me you can actually “hear” a smile and joy in a person’s voice. Haylee’s voice exuded the joy of being welcomed into a new family. Her life had been changed by the selflessness,


without including the Lesser Doxology. I was uncomfortable at first giving the sign of peace to strangers. But I continued on my journey to become Catholic. I went through RCIA and became a Catholic 20 years ago at the Easter Vigil Mass with a nun as my sponsor. Since then, I married in the Church, my children are being raised as Catholics, and they attend Catholic school where they can practice their faith. As for the veil, I began to wear it as soon as I found it, in honor of my mother. Wearing my veil at Mass fills me with serenity and honor for God and the Blessed Sacrament. At Mass, it reminds me to subjugate myself to God’s will. It also reminds me to follow the Blessed Virgin Mary in her example of humility and purity

by Caritas Haiti and CRS, which continues to build safer temporary shelters outside of the capital. An estimated $33 million contributed by American Catholics is being used for reconstruction. Overall, Catholics worldwide gave more than $300 million, including $1,020,904 contributed from the Diocese of Charlotte. Donor nations pledged $9.9 billion through 2014 for Haiti’s rebuilding, but only $265 million had been contributed as of Oct. 26, the latest reported by the World Bank. Observers said the recovery has been hampered by a weak Haitian government under outgoing President Rene Preval. Haiti’s new president will be elected Jan. 16 in a runoff following disputed elections Nov. 28.

sacrifice and love of others. That’s an important lesson we can each carry with us this Christmas. Even if we’re in a situation where presents aren’t as abundant as in years past, we have been welcomed into God’s family through the birth of our Savior who changed our lives through His selflessness, sacrifice and love. We can receive no greater gift than that. So be joyful this Christmas – and share that joy with others throughout the year. Tony Rossi has worked in TV and radio for The Christophers for more than 14 years. A graduate of St. John’s University in New York, he is the host and producer of its weekly radio series “Christopher Closeup.” For a free copy of the Christopher News Note, “A Heart Full of Hope,” e-mail

of heart at the Lord’s table. Since I began wearing the veil, I have further researched the practice. I am surprised by the number of women who choose to veil and their varying reasons for doing so. Biblically, the veiling of women is first addressed in St. Paul’s first epistle to the Corinthians. As of the 1983 Code of Canon Law, women are no longer required to cover their heads at Mass. They may simply choose to do so if they wish. I found the following anonymous quote that expresses the meaning of wearing my veil better than I ever could: “I veil because it matters to me that I am before God. I veil as an external manifestation that Christ is really present in the Eucharist. I veil because it helps me become more reverent. I veil as an act of humility before God. I veil because I believe. I veil because I can.” Laurie Saunders is a member of St. Gabriel Church in Charlotte.

terror targeting Iraqi Christians.” Some reports indicated that more than half of Iraq’s Christian community, estimated to number 800,000 to 1.4 million before the American-led invasion in 2003, have already left the country. The flow of Catholics from the Middle East was just one of the issued addressed at the Vatican during a two-week Synod of Bishops for the Middle East. “We must never resign ourselves to the absence of peace,” Pope Benedict XVI said Oct. 24 during his homily at the synod’s closing Mass. “Peace is possible. Peace is urgent.” In the synod’s final document, the bishops said religion should never be used to perpetrate injustices. On the contrary, recourse to religion must lead every person to see the face of God in others,”

CNS | Thaier al-Sudani, Reuters

Fifty-eight people were killed in an attack on the Syrian Catholic cathedral in Baghdad, Iraq, Oct. 31. the bishops said. This was seen by some participating bishops as an allusion to Israel using the Old Testament to justify its claim to its territory.

Deadline to register for sunshine and warm days — Few spaces left — call NOW! Join new friends from the Diocese of Charlotte on the SOUTHERN CARIBBEAN CRUISE aboard the luxurious Celebrity Summit!

February 5 – 12, 2011

San Juan – St Croix – St Kitts – Dominica – Grenada – Tobago

Your exciting 7-night tropical cruise includes: - all meals and luxury accommodations aboard Celebrity’s beautiful Summit - coach transfers between San Juan airport and the ship - daily Mass on board the ship with our own diocesan priest - full-time escort (with minimum of 36 in our group) PLUS – Celebrity Cruise Line offers exciting optional port excursions including: deep sea fishing; golf at a first-class resort; waterfall swim; historical, quaint Caribbean villages; spectacular tropical flowers; swimming with exotic fish, corals and turtles; rainforest walk; kayaking and MORE!! Or, you may choose to spend your days beachwalking on the golden sands, exploring the shops or just relaxing on the shores of the beautiful Caribbean! Fun, fabulous food and new friends start at just $999! All friends and family are welcome! Prices are per person (double occupancy) and INCLUDE ALL TAXES AND PORT FEES (as of 9/5/10). Airfare is extra and can be arranged by Corporate Travel Service when you register: (800) 727-1999, ext. 116

Dec. 17, 2010  

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

Dec. 17, 2010  

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