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VOL. 48 NO. 7 Publisher Most Rev. Wm. Michael Mulvey, STL DD Editor Alfredo E. Cárdenas


Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey and newly ordained Father Christopher Becerra exchange the sign of peace as Vocation Director Father Joseph Lopez looks on during the celebration of Mass and ordination to the priesthood at the Corpus Christi Cathedral on June 8.


Photo by Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic

Theological Consultant Father Joseph Lopez, JCL Associate Editor Mary E. Cottingham Administrative Assistant Adel Rivera Correspondents Rebecca Esparza, Timothy Hatch, Luisa Scolari If you or someone you know would like to receive the South Texas Catholic call us at (361) 882-6191 Office Address: 620 Lipan Corpus Christi TX 78401-2434 E-MAIL: FAX: (361) 693-6701


Calendar Items Submit your announcements by using our online form, e-mail, fax, mail, or drop it off at the Chancery office. Only announcements for the month of publication will be included in the print edition, if space permits. All other calendar items will appear on the magazine or diocese Web sites. The South Texas Catholic is not liable or in any way responsible for the content of any advertisement appearing within these pages. All claims, offers guarantees, statements, etc. made by advertisers are solely the responsibility of the advertiser. Deceptive or misleading advertising is never knowingly accepted. Complaints regarding advertising should be made directly to the advertiser or to the Better Business Bureau. (USPSN 540-860) Published monthly by the Diocese of Corpus Christi for $25 per year. Periodical postage paid in Corpus Christi Texas. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to South Texas Catholic 620 Lipan, Corpus Christi TX 78401-2434.

Keeping up with the Faith...


The students who prayed for new pope

New transitional deacons ready to serve Look forward to becoming priests


The power of prayer on display


A journey of faith


Community says farewell to priests

Couple married 75 years demonstrate the power of love

Dominicans recalled to Spain

Seminarian takes next step in formation Declares candidacy to priesthood


I want to be a priest


Help us be good Stewards

Encouraging your son’s yearning to serve God

Trying to use money wisely


Es un encuentro con Dios


Pope Paul VI


Sister Puri celebrates golden jubilee


The assent of love

Movimiento Cursillo

Filled with gratitude to God

The last counter-reformation pope and Evangelical Catholicism An invitation to participate in God’s divine life



Father Christopher Becerra, NEWEST DIOCESAN PRIEST Alfredo E. Cardenas South Texas Catholic


elying on help of the Lord “ and our savior Jesus Christ we choose our brother Christopher Emmanuel Becerra for the order of the priesthood.” With those words Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey welcomed the newest priest to the Diocese of Corpus Christi at the Corpus Christi Cathedral on June 8. Vocation Director Father Joseph Lopez, JCL assured Bishop Mulvey that after inquiry with the Christian community and Becerra’s formation directors he was “found worthy.” Bishop Mulvey told Father Becerra that he was “Called with God’s blessings and with so much preparation.” Bishop Mulvey said that Father Becerra’s formation began in his mother’s womb and continued with his family, parish community and seminaries. Indeed, those involved in Father Becerra’s formation took an active part in the ordination Mass. His mother and sister, Teresa and Elizabeth Becerra, served as readers. His brother seminarian Deacon David Bayardo presented the Gospel. Deacon Ron Martinez from Father Becerra’s home parish of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, and Father Piotr Kozieł who served as pastor at Our Lady of Good Shepherd in Kingsville served as his mentor during his pastoral year, vested him as a priest. Representatives from his seminaries and many others who contributed to his formation were also present. The Mass of ordination to the priesthood is an ancient tradition of the Catholic Church. The bishop elected Father Becerra with the consent of the people. Father Becerra, in the presence of the bishop and the faithful, expressed his resolve to carry out his office in accord with



Bishop Mulvey annoints the hands of Father Becerra during the ordination Mass at Corpus Christi Cathedral. Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic

the mind of Christ and of the Church, under the direction of the bishop. The faithful prayed the Litany of the Saints to beseech God on behalf of Father Becerra. The bishop laid his hands on Father Becerra and recited the prayer of ordination to confer the office of priesthood–a gift of the Holy Spirit–on him. All priests present also laid hands on him, a sign of his inclusion in the presbyterate. After the prayer of ordination, Father Becerra was vested with the priestly stole and the chasuble, which is an outward manifestation of his priesthood. His ministry was more fully expressed by the anointing of the hands, a

Father Joseph Lopez lays hands on Father Becerra’s head in silent prayer during his ordination to the priesthood on June 8. Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic



symbol of the priest’s participation in Christ’s priesthood. The presentation of the gifts of bread and wine into the hands of the new priest signifies his duty of presiding at the celebration of the Eucharist and of following Christ crucified. The ordination ceremony concluded with the kiss of peace. With a fraternal embrace, Bishop Mulvey sealed the admittance of Father Becerra into the priestly ministry of his co-workers. The priests present also extended to him a fraternal kiss to welcome Father Becerra into a shared ministry in their order. Bishop Mulvey encouraged Father Becerra to rely on brother priests and to seek their counsel in carrying out his duties of “teaching, sanctifying and governing.”

“The call to the priesthood,” the bishop said, “is a very personal call, a very intimate call to follow Christ. It is also a communal call. Not to work or minister on your own but amongst us, and for that we rejoice.” In his homily, the bishop recalled a question posed to Pope Francis during Pentecost. “What is the most important thing that we as Church need to do to focus on the future?” the pope was asked. He answered, “Thing? Its Jesus Christ.” “The most important reality for us as Church and for you as a priest is Jesus Christ,” Bishop Mulvey said to Father Becerra. “Don’t forget eternal life. Your final goal is Heaven. What He wants from you now and then is love.”

Christopher Becerra’s family and friends celebrate his ordination to the priesthood with applause. Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic

“To everyone who prayed for me, or supported me along my seminary career, thank you. May God bless you, and know that I will be praying for you.” – Father Christopher Becerra 6


Christopher Becerra lays prostate during the Litany of the Saints at his ordination to the priesthood as a gesture of humility. Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic

At the conclusion of the Mass, Father Becerra gave his first blessing as a priest to Bishop Mulvey, and then to his mother Teresa and sister Elizabeth. At a reception after Mass he also blessed individuals in attendance at the Mass who requested a blessing. “After my time in formation, I want to thank God for calling me and giving me the grace to persevere in my formation,” Father Becerra said. “To everyone who prayed for me, or supported me along my seminary career, thank you. May God bless you, and know that I will be praying for you.” To see more photos of this event Father Becerra begins his first assignment as a priest on July 1 at Sacred Heart Church in Mathis.

Father Christopher Becerra expresses joy at his recent ordination to the priesthood. Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic



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Bishop Garriga Middle Preparatory School sixth grader Caleb Ybarra’s religion class was assigned a Cardinal to pray for during the Conclave last March. Despite the odds, Ybarra was convinced their randomly chosen Cardinal, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, would become pope. Rebecca Esparza for South Texas Catholic

The students and the Cardinal for whom they prayed during the conclave

Rebecca Esparza



iana Sanchez never imagined a simple project

to celebrate the historymaking event of selecting a new pope would inspire an entire school.

Sanchez and her fellow religion instructors at Bishop Garriga Middle Preparatory School decided to integrate an interesting project on the website into their prayerful instruction at school. The site allowed the faithful to “spiritually adopt” a cardinal before, during and for three days after the historic papal conclave, held in March. “All we did was register with the website and each class was automati-

cally assigned a cardinal to pray for during the conclave,” Sanchez said. “Anybody who signed up was randomly sent biographical information on which cardinal they would pray for.” Sanchez beamed when she recalled which cardinal her class was randomly assigned Jorge Mario Bergoglio, future Pope Francis, Bishop of Rome. Ultimately, more than 552,000 individuals from around the world signed up to “Adopt-a-Cardinal” on the webJULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


site. Today the site operated by Jugend 2000, a German Catholic youth group, asks the faithful to continue to pray for “your local parishes, your priests, your bishops, the seminarians in your diocese.” “The children were given information about their assigned cardinal and prayers were said twice daily at school. Praying at home was optional. We wanted the children to feel close to the process of selecting a pope. We were also praying a worthy successor to Pope Benedict XVI would be selected,” Sanchez said. One student in particular voiced his unique opinion at the very beginning; he adamantly believed Cardinal Bergoglio would be chosen as the “We were all next pope. C a l e b screaming Ybarra, 12, is your typical and hugging sixth grader. He lo ves each other football and basketball. in wild But after two nights excitement...” of praying at Diana home about the conclave, Sanchez he began to feel the Holy Spirit’s presence when praying specifically for Cardinal Bergoglio. “I believe the Holy Spirit was in me. I had a warm feeling in my heart. I just knew Cardinal Bergoglio was going to be our next pope,” Caleb said gleefully. But his conviction for who would become the next pope did not end there. He came back to school and professed his belief to his teachers and fellow students. “When he first told us he believed Cardinal Bergoglio would be pope, we kind of chuckled,” Sanchez said. “There were other cardinals that were frontrunners and little was known about him (Cardinal Bergoglio). But



Caleb was so convincing. He really truly believed this with all of his heart.” It did not take long for Caleb’s class, as well as other children in the school, to start believing with the same fervor. Soon, the students were making posters, praying incessantly and waiting in anxious anticipation of the big announcement. Caleb and his class learned together that Cardinal Bergoglio had become Pope Francis on March 13. “We were all screaming and hugging each other in wild excitement,”

ality of our students,” school principal Mario Vasquez said. “Hearing back from the pope so quickly speaks to the fact he truly is the people’s pope. He listens.” The pope sent a short letter, accompanied with a small picture of himself and a picture of Christ. The school decided to have the letter and photos framed, along with a group picture of the students who originally wrote to the pope. “We plan to hang (the pope’s letter) in the main hallway of the entrance to

Mario Vasquez, principal at Bishop Garriga Middle Preparatory School, and Caleb Ibarra hold a framed letter from Pope Francis, alongside religion instructor, Diana Sanchez. Rebecca Esparza for South Texas Catholic

Sanchez recalled. “It was amazing to feel so much a part of the process. We were thrilled and decided the children needed to write the pope and congratulate him.” The school sent 56 individual letters from the students to Pope Francis, not expecting a reply. So when a reply from the pontiff appeared in less than a month, both the children and staff were equally ecstatic. “We were very blessed. This whole experience says a lot about the spiritu-

the school. We want the children to be proud of their role in the selection of our pope and have a reminder they can revere everyday,” Vasquez said. Meanwhile, Caleb said the whole experience has strengthened his overall faith. “All of this makes me feel he will be a good pope and make the right choices for our church. I would love to meet the pope one day, but I think I would be really nervous,” he said with a shy smile.

Sister Jude Janecek, IWBS, left, and youth minister Jim Unverferth with Brian Reynolds planning Youth Spectacular. Archived Photo

Sister Jude remembers Youth Spectaculars of yesteryears Jaime Reyna Contributor


N 1985, THE AVERAGE RENT WAS $375, THE AVERAGE PRICE FOR A CAR $9,005, A GALLON OF GASOLINE WAS $1.09 AND A STAMP COST 22 CENTS. THE SONG “WE ARE THE WORLD” WAS RAISING MONEY FOR FAMINE RELIEF IN AFRICA. And in 1985, the Diocese of Corpus Christi held its third Youth Spectacular for youth and young adults with the theme “In Giving, We Receive.” Sister Jude Janacek said, “The youth ministry institute team also assisted with a performance of the musical Godspell for the youth and young adults. I remember how the resource team helped with getting Godspell ready and how the youth really liked the musical.” Jim Unverferth and Tom Hooper were members of the planning team for the Youth Spectacular with Sister Jude. Ernest Chapa and R. T. Mireles introduced the concept of the “Coffee House” as a way for the youth to introduce themselves. Danny Kollaja facilitated small groups of 12 youth for community building activities. The youth really enjoyed their time of “getting to know other youth from around the diocese and Youth Spectacular helped provide that opportunity,” Sister Jude said. Another part of Youth Spectacular that she remembers vividly was the involvement of deaf youth and how they followed all the activities of Youth Spectacular through the assistance of sign language interpreters. Sister Jude also recalled how the youth felt and reacted “When Bishop Rene GraJULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


In 1986, seminarian Frank Martinez (now Father Frank Martinez) led the youth and young adults in praise and worship with his guitar and voice. Archived Photo

>> Sister Jude also

cida would come and greet the youth and young adults. They really, really enjoyed that.” She remembers coordinating a special Youth Ministry Recognition Mass for outstanding youth and young adults in Youth Ministry with Bishop Gracida. The Mass was held at the Corpus Christi Cathedral on May 10, 1985. The bishop recognized youth from the Alice, Beeville, Kingsville, Portland, Sinton, Corpus Christi and Laredo Deaneries. In 1986, the fourth Youth Spectacular was again held at the Corpus Christi Bayfront Plaza for approximately 1,700 youth and young adults “hungry for God.” The theme for this Youth Spectacular was “Take the Risk…Accept the Challenge.” Bobbi Sims was the keynote speaker and seminarian Frank Martinez (now Father Frank Martinez) led the youth and young adults in praise and worship with his guitar and voice. Sister Jude remembers many volunteers assisting her with the Youth Spectacular. One of her assistants was Scott Lawson, a longtime organizer of diocesan youth events. “Scott and others played such an important part of the Youth Spectaculars,” Sister Jude said. “Even though I was the Youth Director, I was not a great motivator and needed Scott and others to be the motivators during the event. I also remember the many seminarians that assisted me who are now priests.” Sister Jude also remembers how the parishes were always excited when Youth Spectacular came and how some of the



remembers how the parishes were always excited when Youth Spectacular came and how some of the teens from a parish mimed the Gospel during the Mass with Bishop Gracida. teens from a parish mimed the Gospel during the Mass with Bishop Gracida. (Editor’s note: This is the second in a series on Youth Spectaculars that will be featured in the run to the 30th Annual Youth Spectacular in September.)

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Alton and Rosalie Jones: John Ahlers

A journey of faith



he French author Andre Maurois wrote, “A happy marriage is a long conversation which always seems too short.” Alton and Rosalie Jones have shared such a relationship. On June 6 they celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary surrounded by family and friends.

By looking at the smiles on their faces in their photos–on their wedding day, June 6, 1938, at the old St. Patrick Cathedral, and more recently at their present home in Austin–their life together has been a very happy conversation indeed. Msgr. Mark Chamberlin, pastor of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish in Portland, where they lived for 38 years, held them up as models for married couples. “They were always kind and cheerful together, always coming to church holding hands, always upbeat and positive in their relationship with fellow parishioners,” Msgr. Chamberlin said. “Alton and Rosalie were great examples to the community–not only for their involvement in the church’s activities, but for their obvious devotion to

The wedding party of Alton and Rosalie Jones are pictured above, from left, Howell Jones (brother of the groom), Alton Jones (groom), Lucille Skrobarcek (sister of the bride), Rosalie Ordner Jones (bride), Catherine Carlucci (sister of the bride), Father Charles Ordner (brother of the bride and priest who presided at the wedding) and Albert Ordner (brother of the bride). Contributed photo

each other,” the pastor said. Their steadfast faith in God and in each other is also intertwined with the beginnings and growth of the Diocese of Corpus Christi. For one thing, they are all close to the same age. The diocese hit the century mark last year and Alton Jones turns 100 on Sept. 19. On that same day, his bride celebrates her 95th birthday. Rosalie Anne Ordner was born on Sept. 19, 1918 in Violet, a small farming community between Corpus Christi and Robstown. Her parents, Herman and Mary Ordner, and their children attended St. Anthony’s Church in Violet, where she received the sacraments.

Herman Ordner was a member of the Knights of Columbus and the Holy Name Society. He was a carpenter, dealt in real estate and was involved in farming. Rosalie’s mother was known to be a “very saintly person.” Herman and Mary had 11 children: six boys and five girls. Of the boys, two died in infancy and two became priests. Father Aloysius J. “Louis” Ordner was ordained in May 1933. Father Charles H. Ordner was ordained in May 1937. Another brother owned a grocery store and another sold cars. Of the girls, four of the five went to Incarnate Word Academy. Alton Carroll Jones was born Sept. JULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


19, 1913 in his grandmother’s house in the small community of Sandia, located between Orange Grove and Mathis. His parents were Walter Cleveland Jones and Lola Idell Jones. He had an older brother Howell Jones. The father was the town barber in Mathis who liked baseball and once took his son Alton to Houston to see Dizzy Dean and the St. Louis Cardinals. On another occasion in 1928 they caught a midnight

Old Saint Patrick Cathedral, where Rosalie and Alton were married in 1938. The couple celebrated their 75th anniversary June 6. Contributed photo

a short time in the house, Rosalie walked into the room without acknowledging anyone, sat down and started playing the piano,” he said of their first encounter. Not long after that, the couple went on their first date. They walked to the movies since he had no car. They saw each other as often as they could after that. Rosalie and Alton Jones in 1938, the year they were In 1937, Jones was diagmarried. nosed with tuberculosis and went to a sanatorium near Contributed photo San Angelo for treatment. He stayed for six months before Father Alton joined the Knights of returning to Corpus Christi. Before Columbus in 1949. returning to the sanatorium, he asked In 1973 the family moved to Portland Rosalie to be his wife. Her brother, where they lived for 38 years, more than Father Charles H. Ordner, performed half of their married life. He joined the wedding ceremony at St. Patrick’s the Portland Knights and she became Cathedral. a charter member of the Catholic Soon after the wedding she acDaughters and was also sacristan for companied her husband back to the the parish. Jones served for 64 years sanatorium for more treatment. After in the Knights holding the posts of returning to Corpus Christi in 1940, Grand Knight, District Deputy, Faith Jones got a job at the Railway Express Navigator in the Fourth Degree, and is Agency. They borrowed $300 from her a lifetime member. A scholarship has brother Albert to buy their first home been set up in his honor. in Corpus Christi where they had their The couple received a papal blessing first three children–David Charles for their 70th wedding anniversary in Jones, William Cleveland Jones and 2008. In 2010 they moved to Austin Thomas Alton Jones. to be near their daughter. In 1948, while still working for Rail“You couldn’t have found a better way Express Agency, the family moved role model for parents,” their son Tom to Alice where their only daughter, Jones said. They have not only been Rosalie Annie Jones, was born. They role models to their children, but for attended St. Elizabeth Church and sent everyone. their children to the parish’s school (John Ahlers is a parishioner of Our Lady through the eighth grade, then to of Mt. Carmel Parish in Portland.) public school in Alice. Mother Rosalie was active in St. Elizabeth School, primarily helping in the cafeteria. She belonged to the Altar Society, was sacristan for the parish and made items such as bibs for the babies being baptized.

train from Mathis to San Antonio to see the New York Yankees and the Brooklyn Dodgers play an exhibition game. They saw legends Tony Lazzeri, Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth. Jones attended high school in Mathis and graduated in 1931. He excelled in baseball and basketball. His basketball team played in the state tournament in Austin. He moved to Corpus Christi in 1935 where he got a job at Goodyear Tires and Rubber. It was in Corpus Christi that Alton and Rosalie’s paths Rosalie and Alton Jones in 2013 at crossed. One fateful evening, their home in Austin. he found himself at the Ordner home on Coleman Street. “After Contributed photo



Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey has made the following appointments for the good of the people of God in the Diocese of Corpus Christi effective July 1. Father Rogel Rosalinas, SOLT will serve as Pastor at St. Joseph in Corpus Christi. Father Zachary Shallow, SOLT will be the Administrator at Christ the King in Corpus Christi. Father Vincent Albano, SOLT will be Parochial Vicar at St. Joseph in Corpus Christi. Father Edgar Barrameda, SOLT will serve as Parochial Vicar at Christ the King in Corpus Christi. Father Arularasu Mathias and Father Varghese K. Ethappiri will serve as Chaplains in training at Christus Spohn Health System. Father Gabriel Coelho, PhD, LOPC-S will be Pastor for Our Lady of the Rosary in Corpus Christi, Our Lady

of Mount Carmel Mission in Clarkwood and St. Vivian Mission in Petronila. Father Eulalio P Ebay, STD will be Pastor of Holy Cross Parish in Corpus Christi. Father Randy Cain will serve as Parochial Vicar at St. Patrick in Corpus Christi. Father Patrick Higgins will serve as Parochial Vicar at St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles; provide priestly ministry at Blessed John Paul II High School and Bishop Garriga Middle School; will assist at Nuestra Señora de San Juan de los Lagos, Madre de la Iglesia; and will celebrate Mass for persons with disabilities. Father Peter Stanley will continue his studies at the University of St. Mary of the Lake in Mundelein, Illinois. Father John M. Vega will be Parochial Vicar at Corpus Christi Cathedral effective Aug. 1. Deacon David Hanson is assigned as Parochial Deacon of Our Lady Star of the Sea Parish and Holy Cross Parish in Corpus Christi and will assist at the Corpus Christi International Seamen’s Center.

Our Lady of Corpus Christi

To see more photos of this event

holds benefit banquet and ‘Dome Fest’

The benefit banquet for the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity (SOLT) was sold out at Our Lady of Corpus Christi Campus on June 7. Ireland’s own Dana Scallon was the headline attraction. St. Philip’s ACTS members served an elegant dinner of prime rib and stuffed flounder prepared by “Chef Miguel.” In spite of the threatening clouds and showers during the morning, the Dome Fest at the OLCC campus held the following day was a success. Dana and live bands played music throughout the day. The children enjoyed free rides on a fire truck, a rock wall, carousel, super huge slide and games. A variety of vendors showed their wares from tupperware, to hair bows, to organo coffee. Cafe Veritas served hamburgers and hot dogs and the traditional festival fare such as funnel cakes, nachos and snow cones were sold as well. “So many are still commenting about how much fun they had at both events. I think that means a ‘yes’ for 2014,” Mona Lisa Biberstein said, one of Dana Scallon performing “under the Big top” at Our Lady of Corpus Christi the organizers. Campus Domefest on June 8.

Richard Stewart for South Texas Catholic


17 17

BISHOP EMMANUEL B. LEDVINA In the stain glass window, at the Corpus Christi Cathedral, depicting the “Multiplication of the loaves and fishes” can be found the coat of arms of Bishop Emmanuel B. Ledvina. Again on the left side of his seal is the insignia of the Diocese of Corpus Christi, and on the right side is his personal coat of arms. The cross at top is a variation of the cross of St. George and can attest to the bishop’s heritage since the Basilica of St. George in Prague was founded in 920 and was the original burial site of the early Czech martyrs and royal dynasties. It was intended to be the main sanctuary in Bohemia, where Bishop Ledvina’s father was born. However, this particular cross consists of a silver field, with a cross of red and blue. In h e r a l d r y “silver” always replaces “white.” The red, white, and blue cross signifies the Extension Society (of which Bishop Ledvina had been an officer for many years) and its service to the American home missions. Bishop Emmanuel B. Ledvina Below the Coat of Arms cross are the lilies of France reminding us that Bishop Ledvina was ordained for the Diocese of Vincennes (now the Archdiocese of Indianapolis) a territory settled by the French missionaries and explorers like Joillet and Marquette. The Carpenter’s Square signifies Bishop Ledvina’s father who was an architect and construction engineer. Significantly the bishop himself was also known as the “Great Builder” because of the number of churches, convents, rectories and schools he built during his administration–including the present Corpus Christi Cathedral. The star is the symbol of the Lone Star State as well as a symbol for the Blessed Virgin (Star of the Sea) and rests on a field of blue–the color of water and of the Blessed Mother. His motto “In Domino Confido” expresses



his strong faith in what can be done when we act with God–“I trust in the Lord.”

BISHOP MARIANO S. GARRIGA The stain glass window celebrating the “Last Supper” contains the coat of arms of Bishop Mariano Simon Garriga who served as auxiliary bishop to Bishop Ledvina and subsequently as the Ordinary of the Diocese of Corpus Christi. To the right in the coat of arms is the personal seal of Bishop Garriga. The laurel tree was a symbol of Barcelona, and “La Garriga” is a municipality in that area of Spain from which Bishop Garriga’s father came. The star at the top of the tree represents Our Lady “Star” of the Sea—the parish church in Port Isab e l , Te x a s where Bishop Garriga was baptized. It also points to the Lone Star State of Texas and is a reminder Bishop Mariano S. Garriga that Garriga Coat of Arms was the first native Texan ordained a bishop in the state. His motto “Sub Tutela Matris” emphasizes his great devotion to Mother Mary—“Under the protection/guard/guidance of Mother.”

AUXILIARY BISHOP ADOLPH MARX During the administration of Bishop Garriga, an auxiliary bishop was also appointed because of the contin-

Msgr. Michael Howell Contributor

ued growth of the Diocese of Corpus Christi–a growth that eventually resulted in the division of the diocese after the death of Garriga in 1965. Msgr. Marx had served as Diocesan Chancellor under Bishop Ledvina and was a p p o i n te d Vi c a r General to Bishop Garriga and shortly after was installed as auxiliar y bishop of the Diocese of Corpus Christi. In 1965 he became the first bishop of the newly erected Auxiliary Bishop Adolph Marx Diocese Coat of Arms of Brownsville when the four southern counties of the Diocese of Corpus Christi where separated from the mother diocese. The shield of Bishop Marx displays the family arms of the Marx family (the name “Marx” meaning “warrior”) which is described as being composed of a silver field with a black chief (upper compartment) bearing two human arms in natural colors. These “arms” are shortened to the wrist and fingers of hands “raised in benediction” on the bishop’s coat of arms so that they might more appropriately reflect this pastoral member of the Marx family who is a warrior for Christ but a source of blessing for his brothers and sisters. A central field of blue has been added to display a Silver Star that symbolizes the Lone Star of Texas, where Bishop Marx was called to serve. The star and colors of silver and blue also

reflect his devotion to the Blessed Virgin. The black upper compartment of the bishop’s arms bears three golden crowns from the coat of arms of Cologne where the bishop was born. These three crowns celebrate the tradition that the three Wise Men (the Magi Kings) are buried in the Cologne Cathedral. In this regard the Star of Texas on the shield has a double significance as it also represents the star of Bethlehem that the wise men followed. The motto “Plenitudo Legis Dilectio” is taken from the epistle to the Romans 13:10 which can be translated “Love is the fulfillment of the law.” This was especially fitting for Bishop Marx who was a Doctor of Canon Law.

BISHOP THOMAS J. DRURY The coat of arms prepared for Bishop Thomas J. Drury when he was consecrated a bishop is made up of a silver field with a green upper partition, bearing a Tau cross and stars, signifying his Irish ancestry as a son of County Sligo. In the principal portion are two crossed lances. As the reported instr uments of martyrdom of St. Thomas the Apostle, the baptismal patron of Bishop Drur y, the lances are tinctured Bishop Thomas J. Drury in red, the Coat of Arms liturgical color of martyrdom (blood). The lances also form the Greek letter “Chi,” the initial letter of “Christ,” for whom St. Thomas offered his life. His motto “Deo Servire Regnare” was taken from the Post-Communion of the Votive Mass for Peace at the time of his consecration as a bishop and is translated “To Serve God is to reign.” Editor’s note: This the second in a three-part series of stories on the coat of arms of each bishop of Corpus Christi. JULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


900 attend Despedida for Dominican Fathers Alfredo E. Cardenas South Texas Catholic


orpus Christi Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey celebrated a Mass before some 900 people at St. Francis de Paula Church in San Diego on June 16 to say farewell to the community’s two longtime Dominican priests.

“We are eternally grateful to you. We will miss you and deeply thank you for all you have done,” Bishop Mulvey said before he invited the standing-room-only crowd to join him in applause for Father Epifanio “Epi” Rodriguez and Father Benito Retortillo. Parishioners from St. Francis de Paula and St. Joseph Mission in Palito Blanco came to say goodbye to their two beloved priests, who will be returning to Spain on July 1. Also on hand was their Provincial Superior Father Javier from Spain.



Parishioners from St. Francis de Paula in San Diego and St. Jo

Bishop Mulvey asked for those that had been married by either Father Epi or Father Benito, as their family in faith knows the two, to stand; and standing-roomonly took on a special meaning. The bishop said, the two Dominicans–and their Dominican brothers before them–had brought the Catholic faith not only to San

oseph Mission in Palito Blanco came to say goodbye to their long-serving priests. Alfredo Cardenas, South Texas Catholic

Diego but also to many surrounding communities. While it was a sad occasion, it was also a time to rejoice. The bishop told the worshipers that the two priests had not only physically brought themselves

from Spain but that they had brought Jesus Christ with them and shared Him “in word and deed.” “They have transmitted to you a love of and for Jesus Christ. They brought you Jesus Christ,” Bishop

To see more photos of this event JULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


Father Epi Rodriguez, in front, who served in San Diego 57 years, and Father Benito Retortillo, who was at San Diego for more than 32 years, were honored with a farewell Mass on Sunday, June 16. Alfredo Cardenas South Texas Catholic

“What they taught you, the faith they have given you, does not go with them, it stays here in this beautiful parish, in this beautiful part of the state.”

Mulvey said. “They are passing you the torch of faith. Reflect deeply on what they have given you. Be reminded of so many things they have taught you. What they taught you, the faith they have given you, does not go with them, it stays here in this beautiful parish, in this beautiful part of the state.” The bishop told the faithful that the mourning would pass but the “life of faith continues to grow.” Father Epi has been in San Diego for 57 years and Fa-



ther Benito for more than 32 years. The Dominican Province of Spain has recalled all their priests in the United States, due to a shortage of vocations. A plaque recognizing the contributions of the Dominican Order will be placed in the Church. Fathers Epi and Benito each received a proclamation from the Texas Senate recognizing their contributions to south Texas. After Mass, a luncheon reception was hosted at the parochial hall where a Mariachi entertained the large crowd.

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To read this story in English go to and use ‘Select Language’ tool.

Luisa Scolari

E Corresponsal

l movimiento “cursillo” nace en Majorca, España en 1949, cuando su fundador, el Obispo Juan Hervas, observó la necesidad de crear un nuevo camino para renovar la fe y desarrolla este método de renovación espiritual, que consiste en un retiro de fin de semana que se complementa con un seguimiento que dura toda la vida.

El primer cursillo en Estados Unidos fue impartido en Texas el año de 1957 por el Padre Gabriel Fernández con el apoyo de dos pilotos estadounidenses, Eduardo Bonnin y Agustín Palomino. Empezó en la base a la que pertenecían en Waco, Texas. Después se extendió al valle y después a Laredo. Con tiempo se extendió por todo Texas, en Phoenix, Arizona, New York City y Lorain, Ohio. El primer cursillo en inglés se impartió en San Ángelo Texas en 1961. Ese mismo año el movimiento se extendió a California, Indiana, Michigan, New México, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, Maryland, Missouri, Massachusetts y al estado de Washington. Ya para el año de 1973, en 130 de las 160 Diócesis católicas en los Estados Unidos se impartían los cursillos. El cursillo no es un club ni una organización, es un movimiento cuyo mensaje principal es el llamado que todos los católicos tenemos para vivir en gracia a través del Padre, del Hijo y del Espíritu Santo. Promueven un desarrollo espiritual por medio del estudio del Evangelio y ofrecen apoyo y dirección para llevar una vida Cristiana viviendo en gracia y cumpliendo con todos los mandamientos de la iglesia Católica. La idea es que cada participante encuentre su propia vocación, y a través de su ejemplo de vida, lleve el mensaje a sus hogares, centros de trabajo y entorno en general, evangelizando en sus ambientes.



no es un club >>ni Elunacursillo organización, es un movimiento cuyo mensaje principal es el llamado que todos los católicos tenemos para vivir en gracia a través del Padre, del Hijo y del Espíritu Santo. La Señora América López, vocal del pre cursillo para mujeres, nos comentó, “yo me enamoré de Dios cuando tomé mi cursillo en Laredo, Texas hace 38 años, y le di mi corazón a Dios.” Ella es la coordinadora de el movimiento de cursillo en la parroquia de Our Lady of Good Counsel en Kingsville. Dijo que, “La finalidad de los cursillos es evangelizar, vivir en gracia e invitar a otros a experimentar el amor de Dios” a través de la organización de retiros que ofrecen para quien quiera participar en ellos, teniendo como único requisito el estar en gracia. El seguimiento se da cuando se reúnen los martes de 7 a 9 de la noche, en el Bishop Thomas Drury Cursillo Center con su director espiritual, el Padre Juan Fernando Gámez, para orar y estudiar el América López y Ofelia Garza participan evangelio. Tamactivamente y son colaboradores bién organizan entusiásticos del Cursillo. talleres de estudio y formación. Luisa Scolari para el South Texas Catholic La señora López continúa




Participantes en un reciente cursillo se unen de las manos en un cĂ­rculo de oraciĂłn. Luisa Scolari para el South Texas Catholic

plicĂĄndonos que, como la palabra lo dice, el cursillo es un curso chiquito de tres dĂ­as de duraciĂłn, que empieza un jueves a las 6 de la tarde y termina el domingo. Aunque el curso es corto es muy intenso y se toma una sola vez en la vida, pero con eso es suficiente para marcarla de una manera definitiva. La seĂąora Ofelia Garza, vocal de el secretariado, nos comenta, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Somos una familia espiritual de 35 miembros que vienen de Beeville, Sinton, Odem, Corpus, Kingsville, Alice y Mathis y algunas otras comunidades cercanas.â&#x20AC;? Las personas que han vivido la experiencia del cursillo quedan tan llenos de gracia y alegrĂ­a que invitan a otros miembros de su parroquia, amigos y familiares a vivirlo, y es asĂ­ como ha ido creciendo este movimiento a travĂŠs de la evangelizaciĂłn. El estudio de la doctrina Cristiana se hace a travĂŠs del testimonio personal, que ayuda a descubrir los talentos que Dios nos ha dado para ponerlos al servicio del prĂłjimo. Se imparten unos â&#x20AC;&#x153;rollos,â&#x20AC;? que son unas plĂĄticas muy largas y extendidas que se ofrecen de diferentes maneras para que pueda llegar a todos y cada uno de los participantes. Los rollos son impartidos por los seglares, pero los rollos mĂ­sticos son ofrecidos por los sacerdotes y diĂĄconos. Gracias a los cursillos muchos matrimonios se han salvado, y muchas personas que estaban perdidas, han encon-



trado su camino hacia Dios y algunos otros han descubierto su vocaciĂłn como sacerdotes, religiosas y diĂĄconos, lo que nos hace que podamos observar como trabaja la gracia del EspĂ­ritu Santo. El cursillo tambiĂŠn despierta la inquietud de la responsabilidad que como CatĂłlicos adquirimos con el bautismo de como vivir la Cristiandad y de evangelizar, como JesĂşs nos lo pidiĂł. El grupo de cursillos en Corpus Christi estĂĄ conformado por el Padre GĂĄmez como director espiritual, Juan VĂĄzquez como diĂĄcono, Manuel Rangel como vocal y la seĂąora


Garza como presidenta del secretariado y un total de 34 miembros. Pertenece a la Región 8 que abarca 22 estados. La sede nacional se encuentra en la ciudad de Dallas. Y la sede internacional en la ciudad de Madrid. Actualmente el movimiento imparte cursos en China, Japón, Alemania, Italia, Francia y toda América. Los cursillos se ofrecen en inglés y en español y para hombres y mujeres por separado varias veces al año y requiere que tengan todos los sacramentos. Si está interesado en p asistir a un cursillo, puede comunicarse con la señora López al (361) 592-1927 y con la señora Garza al (361) 595-1858. Ayudenos a Prevenir el Abuso Financiero La Diócesis de Corpus Christi por medio de la recomendación del Concilio Diocesano de Finanzas y el Concilio Presbiteral han llevado su dedicación mas allá para la buena administración y responsabilidad ¿nanciera en nombre de donantes generosos al instituir un “hotline” para reportar el abuso ¿nanciero. La Diócesis de Corpus Christi ha seleccionado un tercer partido independiente, La Red, para proporcionarle a usted con una manera para reportar anónima y con¿dencialmente el abuso ¿nanciero e fraude. Los empleados, los parroquianos, los voluntarios, los vendedores, y otros partidos interesados estan impulsados para reportar las preocupaciones que tengan respeto a la conducta de påca ética ¿nanciera dentro de la Diócese de Corpus Christi. Todas las investigaciones serán tradas inmediatamente y discretamente. Personas que llamen tienen el derecho de mantenerse anónimas.

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New deacons ready to serve Looking forward to becoming priests Mary Cottingham South Texas Catholic

Deacons David Bayardo, left, and Alfredo Villarreal are presented to Bishop Mulvey at the Mass of ordination to the transitional diaconate. Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic





Both men have loving, Catholic parents, were altar servers, attend St. Mary’s Seminary in Houston and on June 1, were ordained to the transitional diaconate by Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey in Corpus Christi Cathedral with family and friends joyfully looking on and joining in prayers of thanksgiving. Their paths to this point in their shared experience, however, took different routes. Deacon Bayardo describes his journey as a steady stream of faith his entire life. At the age of 18 he entered the seminary and in a real sense of the word grew up in that environment. Born to Pedro Jr. and Diana Bayardo, he said his parents and sister are a testament to Christianity. He described his father as his rock. According to Deacon Bayardo his father encompasses a lot of what the Gospel is about–kindness, love and patience. “My father is always just and I always felt loved. He has been there for me through every step. “My mom is such a loving and prayerful person. She is emotive and outwardly prayerful and my sister, Kathryn is like an extension of my mother. My parents do a good job reflecting God’s love. That was always a dynamic that inspired me,” Deacon Bayardo said. During the transitional diaconate ceremony, he was filled with a multitude of overwhelming emotions. “Becoming a transitional deacon is the first time you make the promises. Its the celibacy and chastity…the big one, until the day you die,” Deacon Bayardo said. “For so long you’re in [seminary], for me it will be eight years and your waiting for that light at the end of the tunnel and sometimes you don’t know whether it’s a train coming along or the end of the tunnel. You’re just trucking along. It’s a huge step.” His formal formation began at Holy Family Church where the Oblates of Mary Immaculate provided a constant in his life. His parents were married there, it was where he and his sister were baptized, his uncle, Father Francisco Quezada (now working for the Diocese of Colorado Springs) was ordained, his sister, Kathryn was later married and his nieces and nephews were baptized. The Incarnate Word of the Blessed Sacrament sisters also played a big part in forming him. He went to elementary school at Central Catholic and then on to Incarnate Word Academy where the sisters taught. In 2008, after five years of seminary, Bayardo took some time off from discernment, but did not stray far from the Church. Father Patrick Donohoe hired him to become director of faith formation and youth minister at St. Joseph Parish in Beeville. It



Overcome with emotion, Deacon Bayardo raches out to his parents, embracing his father Pedro Bayardo, who has “always been his rock.” Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic

was during that time that he came to the full realization of his calling. “I needed to work on some stuff about myself on my time off,” Deacon Bayardo said. “Part of being an effective minister is understanding the people you

minister to and the greatest model for that is God incarnate in Jesus Christ,” he said. He learned how to live on his own, pay bills and taxes. The more you become like those you help the more you can understand and help them.” “Working in a parish and understanding the dynamic of how beautiful that life, that manifestation of the Christian life is. Being part of a parish and watching the joy that Father Pat had running one and even some of the

hardships. But it was really essentially the Christian faithful that led me back to the seminary, the people that I ministered to in the youth ministry and being director of faith formation,” he said. In 2010 he said he went back to the seminary a better person with an overwhelming sense of calm and peace in the knowledge that he was on the right track–the one laid out for him by God.

“True discernment comes from a sense of true lived Christianity. The more open you are to the promises of Baptism, the more prone you are to really have an open ear to what God’s call for you is. If you work on becoming a good Christian, God’s will in your life works.” – Deacon David Bayardo



He returned to parish life during his pastoral year at St. Pius X working with Father Paul Hesse. “I love St. Pius X and St. Joseph Parishes. Working at a parish and living at a parish is different. During my pastoral year I could assist the priest with the sacraments. Father Paul included me on all aspects of learning what a priest life is like from the social aspect to understanding your community, to going on sick calls,” the new deacon said. While Deacon Bayardo was 18 when he entered the seminary and had already been discerning for two years, Deacon Villarreal was 38 when he began his discernment–he knew how to live on his own, pay bill and taxes. Deacon Villarreal was born in Los Angeles to Maria and Hector Villarreal and the family stayed there for seven years, after which they moved around some. His family, including his brother

Hector and two sisters-Lety and Imelda, settled in Monterrey, Mexico for the next 10 years where he became fluent in Spanish. “I felt nurtured and loved by my parents, although my dad didn’t say much he always showed love through his action. My mom would say it and demonstrate it,” Deacon Villarreal said. When the Mexican economy took a downward spiral his parents moved the family to Corpus Christi and Deacon Villarreal attended both W. B. Ray and King High Schools. At 17, he began working for HEB and did so for the next 21 years. “I liked the service aspect of the job and I miss the people, not the work,” he said. While working for HEB, Deacon Villarreal took courses towards a degree in business. He first attended Del Mar College, and then Texas A&M

University-Corpus Christi, which helped him get into pre-theology in the seminary and cut to five years, instead of the normal eight, for him to become a priest. Always attending church, at the urging of his mother, Deacon Villarreal described himself as a “pew warmer.” Never straying to far from the Church, but never really participating either. The turning point came when his brother-in-law was shipped off to Iraq. He moved in to help his sister with her two-week-old baby and small child. His sister began taking a course called “The Encounter.” “She had this fire in her eyes and I remembered I use to have that,” Deacon Villarreal said. In 2005, she finally nailed him down to go to “The Encounter” with her. “From the first class I felt God poking me until he got my attention.

Maria and Hector Villarreal, at right, stand proudly by their son Deacon Alfredo Villarreal, during the Mass of his ordination to the transitional diaconate.

Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic JULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


“From the first class I felt God poking me until he got my attention. I started actively seeking His will and praying more. I began participating in Mass and finding ways to serve–helping with Encounter, ushering and joining the Knights of Columbus.” — Deacon Alfredo Villareal

I started actively seeking His will and praying more. I began participating in Mass and finding ways to serve–helping with Encounter, ushering and joining the Knights of Columbus,” he said. People would ask him if he would pursue the priesthood, but he would casually shrug them off. It wasn’t until his Pastor Father Bob Dunn from Most Precious Blood Church, approached him after confession that he even considered it. “Father Bob probably didn’t even know my name that day,” he said. Later, Father Dunn told him the Holy Spirit led him to ask. After a year of praying every day he entered the seminary. “It’s been great…challenging,” Deacon Villarreal said. Some courses were harder than others for him. The seminary has prepared him for what lies ahead. It has been shaping him. He has seen a lot of personal growth within himself–emotional, spiritual and intellectual, which has helped him get to know himself better. “Just the ability to form friendships–it’s been a rewarding time,” he said. In his homily at the ordination, Bishop Mulvey thanked the deacons for their courage, especially considering the world that we live in today. To be able to say, “here I am Lord, present



and ready to serve.” Both Deacons Bayardo and Villarreal desire to be priests but they know that it will happen in God’s time not theirs. “Obedience is a part of my promises, I’ll go where I’m needed, but a big part of obedience is trust in those people who are making those decisions for you and I have had nothing but trust in this diocese since I’ve been here,” Deacon Bayardo said. To others considering the call to the priesthood Deacon Bayardo gave this advice, “I’d tell them to keep praying and thinking about it. I can’t wait to be a priest. True discernment comes from a sense of true lived Christianity. The more open you are to the promises of Baptism, the more prone you are to really have an open ear to what God’s call for you is. If you work on becoming a good Christian, God’s will in your life works.” He and his brother Deacon Villarreal are proof of that. To see more photos of this event

In Memor


ather Jean F. Hart, 87, a priest with the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity (SOLT) for 23 years, died Wednesday, June 19, after a long illness.

Father Hart was born in New Britain, Connecticut on April 3, 1926 where he attended the local public schools. During WW II, he served in the US Navy in Okinawa as a Petty Officer 2nd Class. Following the war, he attended the University of Connecticut and subsequently attended the Minor Seminary of the Society of Atonement. He received a BA in Philosophy from St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore in June 1956. He returned home to New Britain to teach at the elementary school from 1957-1960, after which he managed the Catholic Library and Bookstore in Hartford for one year. He served as Curriculum/Circulation Librarian at Central Connecticut State University from 1960-1967. In 1967, he was appointed as founding Director of Library Services at Greater Hartford Community College. In early 1968, he received an MSLS from Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven. Upon his retirement, after 19 years of service, he entered Holy

riam: Father Jean Hart, SOLT Apostles Seminary in Cromwell, Connecticut in 1986 where he received an MA in 1990. Following his ordination to the priesthood on May 5, 1990, he served as administrator of Immaculate Conception Parish in Skidmore and Saint Francis Xavier Mission in Tynan. In 1996, he was assigned to Hythe, England and given an appointment as parish priest with responsibility for churches in four communities, and care of a convent and a school. After serving there for six years, he was appointed in July 2002 as SOLT General Procurator with residence in Rome. The following year, it was determined that his oďŹ&#x192;ce should be located in Corpus Christi and accordingly, his oďŹ&#x192;ce was established on the campus of Our Lady of Corpus Christi. Soon thereafter, he was appointed priest for the Saint Anselm of Canterbury Community for Catholics of Anglican Use. Shortly thereafter, because of his academic library experiences, he was asked to serve as Director of the OLCC Library. Subsequently, he was appointed to the OLCC Board of Directors.

In addition to celebrating Holy Mass for the Anglican Use Community and for the campus community when assigned, he celebrated Holy Mass frequently at Inc a r n a te Wo r d Academy and he also served at local churches in the Diocese of Corpus Christi Father Jean Hart, SOLT upon request. April 3, 1926 - June 19, 2013 He was gratepp ful for his diverse background and variety of opportunities to serve as a SOLT priest in the Church.

Six SOLT brothers will be ordained transitional deacons Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey will ordain six brothers of the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity (SOLT) to the transitional diaconate at Corpus Christi Cathedral on July 16 at 10 a.m.

Brother Tristan Abbott

Brother Michael Wight

Brother Al Abainza

The SOLT brothers to be ordained are Brother Tristan Abbott, Brother Michael Mary Wight, Brother Al Abainza, Brother Michael Slovak, Brother Patrick Prajzner and Brother Juan Villagomez.

Brother Michael Slovak

Brother Patrick Prajzner

Brother Juan Villagomez



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October 29, 2013 – November 7, 2013 4035 Violet Road

4035 Violet Road Corpus Christi, TX For more information go to our web site at:

WWW.REFUGEOFHOPECC.ORG or call (361) 241-5300



Total Cost: $2,900 Includes Airplane & Bus travel, all breakfast and Dinner, Hotel, Tips, airport taxes& fuel surcharges, daily Mass and more! Spiritual Director: Fr. Gabriel Coelho, Corpus Christi Cathedral Departure: Corpus Christi Airport For more information call Corpus Christi Cathedral

(361) 883-4213 Don’t miss this great opportunity Reserve Your Seat Today!

Through the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola Timothy Hatch

F Contributor

or more than 50 years, and with the encouragement of Blessed Pope John Paul II, a devotion to the Divine Mercy as revealed to St. Faustina Kowalska by Jesus has spread among faithful Catholics worldwide. Our Lady of Corpus Christi Retreat Center offers the Divine Mercy Retreat in response to the great need of God’s mercy and to foster an awareness of it. In the 1930s, during the events that led up to World War II, Jesus appeared to St. Faustina–a polish nun–telling her of the great need for God’s mercy and that it was infinitely available to the whole world by way of His passion, death and resurrection for those who asked for it. Jesus asked St. Faustina to paint a picture illustrating the Divine Mercy flowing forth from blue and red rays emanating from Jesus’ resurrected body. The blue and red rays represent God’s mercy flowing from the blood

and water poured out for sinners when Jesus was crucified. Through this painting and by founding a religious order dedicated to spreading the Good News of God’s Divine Mercy, St. Faustina fulfilled what Jesus asked her to do. “In this retreat, we use a retreat guide called ‘Consoling the Heart of Jesus’ by Father Michael Gaitley, MIC. There are only one to two talks a day with most of the time spent reflecting on the excellent meditation and reflections of Father Gaitley. There is time to share each day the fruits of your prayer with other retreatants,” Father Dan Estes, SOLT, Director of Our Lady of Corpus Christi Retreat Center, said. “The goal for this retreat is to help people experience the great mercy of God and to come to know how to unite their sufferings and sacrifices with Christ in a way that is consoling to Him,” he said. The Divine Mercy message is simply to ask for God’s mercy, to be merciful and to completely trust in Jesus. God wants all to approach Him in prayer constantly, repenting of sins and asking Him to pour His mercy out upon us and upon the whole world. He wants everyone to receive His Mercy and let it flow through to others. Jesus wants everyone who receives His mercy to extend love and forgiveness to others just as He does. God

wants all of His people to know that the graces of His mercy are dependent upon their trust in Him. The more one trusts in Jesus, the more he will receive. “Through these retreats, I’ve learned to be more conscious of the things I say and do and the repercussions on others,” Sandra Carlisle said. “I spend more time contemplating about things I do for others and take time to share myself with them.” The weekend themes include our sinfulness and the wounded Heart of Jesus; the generous love of God (receiving mercy); forgiveness for ourselves and of others; abandoning ourselves; trusting in Christ; placing ourselves totally in the hands of Jesus; and giving mercy to our neighbor. Retreat participants learn how to be a consoler of Jesus as He undergoes His sorrowful passion and death. They gain a deeper understanding of the mercy of God and learn to trust in Jesus and live their lives as merciful to others as Christ is merciful to them. “This retreat, really, is a new expression of devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus based on the revelation of Divine Mercy given to St. Faustina,” Father Estes said. The weekend retreat begins at 5 p.m. on a Thursday and ends at 2 p.m. the following Sunday. To check available dates and to register, visit www. or call (361) 289-9095.



Calendar of Events:

July 16: Ordination of SOLT Brothers to the Diaconate: Br. Tristan Abbott, Br. Michael Mary Wight, Br. Al Abainza, Br. Michael Slovak, Br. Patrick Prajzner and Br. Juan Villagomez. July 26 - Aug. 4: 8-day Retreat for men and women Aug. 22 - 25: Men’s Silent Retreat Sept. 12 - 15: Women’s Silent Retreat

Thank You

to all of the wonderful people who helped make the Dome Fest a great success

Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity on their 55th Anniversary & the Ordination of 6 Brothers to the Transitional Diaconate Tuesday, July 16 10 a.m. at Corpus Christi Cathedral

1200 Lantana • Corpus Christi

(361) 289-9095

Free Coffee at


Bookstore: Ext. 309 Retreats: Ext. 321


Volunteers The ACTS Community • St. Philip • Most Precious Blood Our Lady of Good Counsel - Kingsville SOLT & KLUX Musicians Olde Dogs • Newman • David and Barbara Brown • Jason Rodriguez 1 Neophyte • Jesus and the Jets • Ray Flores and Crossover Uncut Diamondz • Fire and Flame • The Mountain Laurels Sponsors: Amtex Security • Skid-o-Can • Tamez-Pearson Construction Coastal Tools & Supply • Ramon Funeral Home CC Disposal Service • BFI • Ricoh Printing • Scott Electric

For more information for the silent retreats, please visit “Come and See” Jesus in our beautiful Perpetual Adoration Chapel! AND “Like” us on facebook @ “Our Lady of Corpus Christi and Cafe Veritas”


Gaining peace through prayer How to pray About Your vocation Father Joseph Lopez, JCL



s God calling me to be a priest? How can I know for sure? What’s the best way to make a decision like this? As you contemplate what to do with your life, be confident that God has a specific plan for you, and that you can discover it through prayer.

What is prayer in the first place? Because we take our faith seriously, we know that praying is not as simple as saying a couple of Our Fathers and Hail Marys in a church pew. While that is a good beginning, prayer requires more than just reciting words. Authentic prayer goes much deeper. As St. John Vianney wrote in his “Little Catechism,” “Prayer is nothing else than union with God. In this intimate union, God and the soul are like two pieces of wax molded into one.” In a very real way, prayer helps us to achieve union with God, which is the vocation of all Christians. No matter which vocation God has in mind for us, it is essential that we learn to pray well. One of the most important ways to pray is spending time with Jesus in the Eucharist. The Church teaches us that the Eucharist is “the source and summit of the Christian life.” (CCC 1324) Because Christ is present completely in the Eucharist, it makes sense that we should

want to be where He is physically present. Here are some practical tips on how to begin conversing with our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, with a special emphasis on discerning a priestly vocation.

Read inspiring Scripture passages If we want to really know what Jesus wants, it is necessary to know what He said and did as recorded in the Bible. Scriptures can spark a great conversation between you and the Lord. Here are a few suggested passages to get started: • Isaiah 6:1-9 The angel calls Isaiah even though he is unworthy • Matthew 19: 16-30 Jesus’ encounter with the rich young man • Matthew 9: 35-38 The harvest is rich but the laborers are few • John 1:35-51 The calling of the first disciples • Luke 14:25-33 Following Christ no matter what the cost

Contemplate life changes Everyone, no matter how holy, can always live more perfectly. As you pray before the Eucharist, think about the things in your life that may be holding you back from making commitments to God. Even things like our choice of music and movies can be detrimental to serious discernment and living an authentic Christian life. Start with the little things, but don’t be afraid to tackle the big ones!

Talk to God about your family If you make the decision to begin studying for the priesthood, your parents may not understand. Your friends may be skeptical. And sometimes it can be tough to put space between you and your female friends. Ask God for guidance in these relationships. Remember that Jesus Himself had family and friends who

n didn’t always understand Him; He can understand what you are going through..

Confront your fears For a healthy single man, considering a celibate life without the comforts of a wife and family is difficult, since our nature draws us toward family life. Many men are afraid that seminary will be too challenging or that public speaking will prove too difficult. Speak to God about these concerns, and then ask for courage and peace. If you confront your fears now, with God’s help, your discernment will be much less complicated. Always keep in mind, God does not call the equipped, He equips the called!

Ask God to show you your strengths If God is calling you to priesthood, He will have given you certain qualities that will make you a good priest. Spend some time examining your personal gifts, and then imagine how you can use them to help others as a priest. You may discover you have a lot to contribute to the Church. In the end, spending time with Jesus should be like a conversation with Him– just as if you were spending time with a good friend. Speak to Jesus from your heart and then listen. You are likely not going to hear anything with your ears. Instead, “hearing” results in an increase in understanding, acceptance and willingness to follow God’s path for your life. Prayer should bring peacefulness about the path forward. Prayer is the surest way to know what God wants us to do with our lives–and to gain the grace and courage to do it. Thank you for taking the time to discern your vocation. Remember, the best way to discern is to prayy and be open to God’s will in your life. JULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


Sister Puri “filled by gratitude for Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey, left, Father Pete Elizardo and Sister María Purificación Palis, OP at the Jubilee Mass commemorating her 50th year in service to the Church. Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic

Alfredo E. Cardenas


South Texas Catholic

his is a day of gratitude to God, to Sister Puri, to her sisters, to her family, to all religious that take consecrated vows,” Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey said to Sister María Purificación Palis, OP at the Jubilee Mass commemorating her 50th year in service to the Church.

Sister Puri, as those who know and love her call her, celebrated her Golden Jubilee on May 25 at St. Paul the Apostle Church in Corpus Christi. Bishop Mulvey told Sister Puri that much has changed in the 50 years since she took her initial vows, but one thing has not changed, “that you remain consecrated to God, to the



Lord Jesus Christi in the power of the Holy Spirit.” Sister Puri joined the Dominicans of St. Dominic and was soon sent to Taiwan to learn Chinese. Upon her departure she told her mother that she did not know when they would see each other again. Her mother burst into tears. “Missionaries returning home in the 1960s was unheard of,” Sister Puri said. After nine years in Taiwan, she was sent to Oxnard, California where she helped start a convent and taught at the high school level. Her next stop was in Corpus Christi where, Sister Puri said, “the warmth, friendship, of the dedicated catechists and parishioners inspired me.” In her 10 years in Corpus Christi she prepared young people for the sacraments, visited the sick,

the elderly, the shut-ins and the dying. Eventually, her health deteriorated and she was sent to Rome for a year to study and to recoup her health. After Rome she went to Santa Paula, California and then Alice in the Diocese of Corpus Christi. In Alice she was involved in education ministry and the religious formation of young people. “As I reflect my life’s journey I am filled by gratitude for the abundance of God’s blessing poured forth upon me,” Sister Puri said. “In mission work there is another

r the abundance of God’s blessing” Father Peter Martinez, left, Deacon Frank Rodriguez and Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey are pictured with Sister María Purificación Palis, OP at the Jubilee Mass at St. Paul the Apostle Church. Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic

People, as well as, churches, halls and cemeteries can all be consecrated, or set aside for God. “All of us are called in different ways and different circumstance to follow Jesus Christi and to be consecrated to Him,” the bishop said. “Sister, we are here today to The Dominican Sisters of St. Dominic at the Jubilee acknowledge and to thank Mass commemorating Sister Palis’ 50 years of service you and to help you to reto the Church. consecrate, to continue to put yourself at the service of Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic the Lord in as loving way; of form of language: a smile, a gesture of friendship, a good deed. It’s called the ‘pastorate of presence,’” she said. Bishop Mulvey explained that consecration is to make holy with God, to belong to God, to set aside for God.

fashioning yourself again in your mind to Jesus Christ.” Bishop Mulvey said that all religious make three expressions expressed to dedication to Jesus called vows. These are poverty, chastity and obedience. Poverty is a reflection of the image of Jesus Christ. Chastity calls for an exclusive relationship with Jesus Christ, a total union, a union of prayer. Obedience, the bishop said, is the greatest and most difficult of the three vows. It takes humility. It takes love to be obedient. It takes a constant search to do God’s will. Bishop Mulvey cited a passage from the Catechism of the Catholic Church that says, “We cannot be in touch with Jesus Christ unless you are touched by the Holy Spirit.” He said, “Vows are not antique.” God is still calling young men and women to religious life, the bishop said. He encouraged vocations in parish, and in families.

To see more photos of this event



IWBS taught Sister Raquel to grow and mature in the Lord Sister Julianne Kuntscher, IWBS

S Contributor

ister Maria Raquel Newman entered the Congregation of the Sisters of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament on Feb. 11, 1986, desiring to fulfill a life of total giving of herself to God and to the service of the people of God. She professed first vows on Jan. 23, 1988, and on July 27, 1991 she celebrated her perpetual vows at Incarnate Word Convent in Corpus Christi. Baptized Maria Raquel, she was born in Corpus Christi on May 8, 1959 to Jesse Assucion Newman and Velma Chano Newman. She attended area elementary schools and graduated from Incarnate Word Academy in 1977. Sister Raquel worked as an administrative assistant and religion teacher at Incarnate Word Academy Middle School in 1987-1988. She studied at



Del Mar College for a time. In 1992, she earned a B. A. degree from Incarnate Word College in San Antonio, graduating with a major in religion and a minor in business management. She continued her education, engaging in a graduate course in current theological issues at Incarnate Word College in San Antonio. Sister Raquel speaks of her education with a sense of wonder and satisfaction. She said that, during her teen years, the pursuit of a college education had not been among her goals in life; she never imagined going to college. When Sister was a novice, her director–Sister Maria Elizabeth Brehony–recognized her potential for academic work and encouraged her to take “just one college course at a time.” “I discovered a whole new world in learning. If it had not been for the sisters’ encouragement and support, I would not have taken the risk of going back to school. My community has taught me to grow and mature in the Lord,” Sister Raquel said, referring to her formative years of religious life. Sister Raquel has many hobbies. She is an avid reader and a Star Trek fan. She has mastered computer skills, doing programming and setting up websites for the congregation and for Incarnate Word Academy. Sister longs

“My community has taught me to grow and mature in the Lord” for sufficient time to do wood carving, which she finds a prayerful activity. She enjoys photography, especially nature shots, all types of music and genealogy. She has served as music accompanist, playing guitar and mandolin for various events, including the celebration of the liturgy. Sister Raquel has worked and chaired numerous commissions and committees for the congregation, including secretary and active delegate to general chapters, and as Sister-inCharge of the Motherhouse. Presently Sister Raquel teaches religion and yearbook classes at Incarnate Word Academy in Corpus Christi. She is a great fan and supporter of the IWA sports teams, and has directed her students in the production of excellent yearbooks documenting the growth and spirit of IWA as an exceptional Catholic school centered in the p person of Jesus, the Incarnate Word.

Mary Cottingham


South Texas Catholic

ister María de los Ángeles, PCI, was just six-years old when she knew she wanted to give her life to God. At a retreat before her first Communion she experienced a joy and peace and in her own words “la presencia de Dios.” Now at age 24, Sister María made her final profession of vows at St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles Church. Friends and her community of Pax Christi Sisters shared in her joy at a Mass celebrated by Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey on June 7. In his homily Bishop Mulvey spoke of the meaning of Pax Christi, which is Latin for Peace of Christ, and the seemingly impossible responsibility to bring peace to the world. “Jesus Christ, Son of God would not ask what was impossible,” he said. “Jesus is peace. Be peacemakers in your family, work, church, diocese and communities,” Bishop Mulvey said. Sister María was born in Querétaro, México to Juan and Agustina Zepeda. She is one of five children and her parents are very devoted to God and their church. Her parents wanted her to be happy. Although sad to see her go, they gave her their blessing. She has not seen them in four years. At age 16 she began her discernment with the Pax Christi Sisters. Sister María chose the Pax Christi Sisters because of the happiness and peace she felt in the house and their missionary work helping the poor.

Bishop Mulvey presides over Mass and the sacred Rite of Perpetural Profession made by Pax Christi Sister María de los Ángeles at St. Peter Prince of the Apostles Church on June 7. Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic

While discerning, she graduated high school, taught CCD, helped with special retreats during Holy Week and gave talks to youth groups. When she turned 18 she was able to make her first profession of temporary vows. During the next five years she continued studying the Bible and learned psychology, philosophy and theology. While reaching out to minister to the poor in south Texas, she also helped with retreats at the Pax Christi Retreat Center in Brenham, Texas. The Pax Christi Sisters charism is contemplative and apostolic. They help the poor by providing food and clothing. The sisters serve at Saint Mary’s Mission in Corpus Christi, provide vocation retreats and operate a religious goods store. Their Pax Christi Liturgical Retreat Center is planned for completion in the summer of 2014. The sisters see the

mission of this center as a commitment to strengthen the faith of participants, by sharing the values of the Pax Christi spirituality, “Oneness in the Lord.” Their mission is to create a sacred place where Christ may be encountered and faith renewed. The Pax Christi Sisters have ministered to the poor in the Corpus Christi, San Antonio, Brenham, the Diocese of Arlington Virginia–where they have their house of studies, the Bronx, New York and in two Mexican dioceses, Querétaro and Michoacán.

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Stephens declares candidacy to pursue the priesthood Alfredo E. Cardenas South Texas Catholic


ishop Wm. Michael Mulvey officially presented Joshua Stephens as a candidate for priesthood during a Mass at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish in Portland on June 1. During the Mass Stephens publicly declared before the Church his intention to become a priest, and the Church officially accepted that request and recognized him.

The Rite of Candidacy takes place at the end of a seminarian’s first few years of formation, known as the aspirancy period. After the Rite of Candidacy has been conferred, the candidate can then formally continue his formation. The next steps on Stephens’ road to the priesthood will be receiving the Ministry of Reader and the Ministry of Acolyte, ordination as a Transitional Deacon and finally priesthood. The Vocation Director for the Diocese of Corpus Christi, Father Joseph Lopez, JCL called Stephens forward and he answered “present” and proceeded to kneel before Bishop Mulvey. The bishop said that the pastors and teachers in charge of his formation, and others who knew him had given a favorable account of Stephens, and the bishop and the community had full confidence in their testimony. The bishop then asked Stephens two questions. “In response to the Lord’s call are you resolved to complete your preparation so that in due time you will be ready to be ordained for the ministry of the Church?” Stephens answered, “I am.” The bishop then asked, “Are you resolved to prepare yourself in mind and spirit to give faithful service to Christ the Lord and his body, the Church?” Stephens again answered, “I am.” “The Church receives your declaration with joy. May God who has begun the good work in you bring it to fulfillment,” Bishop Mulvey said to conclude the formal ceremony. “You have been in the seminary for several years in a community of faith. You have been educated here, worshiped here [at Our Lady of Mount Carmel]. You have done an exemplary job at Holy Trinity [Seminary in Irving, Texas].



Bishop Mulvey presides over Candidacy ceremony accepting Joshua Stephens into his next step towards the priesthood. Alfredo Cardenas, South Texas Catholic

Now you enter into a new continue your education in theology to enter into the mystery of God,” Bishop Mulvey said to Stephens. Stephens is scheduled to report to the Pontifical North American College in Rome in the fall to continue his formation. “It’s going to be an exciting journey to be with seminarians from all over the world,” the bishop said to him. Bishop Mulvey directed him to “Be attentive to your studies but also to the universality of the Church, be attentive to the poor.” “May the Lord grant you peace during these years and may He continue to increase your faith, “ Bishop Mulvey said.


magine that you ask your son–or grandson–what he wants to be when he grows up, and he answers, “I want to be a priest!”

“Dad, I want to be a priest” Encouraging your children to discern their vocations Father Joseph Lopez, JCL Contributor

What would your reaction be? Would you be worried, or elated or somewhere in between? The truth is that God has a plan for every child; He wants them to be happy even more than you do. And their true happiness is found in discovering God’s plan for their lives and following it wholeheartedly. So if you are truly concerned about a child’s well being, it makes sense to help him discern God’s call. A person’s occupation–professor, salesman, pilot or writer–can change many times over a lifetime, but a vocation is a deep part of a person’s identity. It is true that most people are called to the vocation of marriage. But if your child feels called to a life of service in the Church, don’t be afraid; priests and religious live very happy and fulfilling lives. While they experience sorrow and hardship like every other person, they also experience great joy serving God by serving others. So if you are a parent or grandparent, what can you do to help your children discern their calling in life? The primary thing is to foster openness to God’s will; let them know that God has a plan for them. The next time the topic comes up, consider asking the question: “What do you think God wants you to be when you grow up?”

Home-grown vocations Because everyone’s first vocation is to be holy, the most important thing parents can do is to create a home environment where Christian virtue can flourish. Here are a few specific ideas for helping children discern their particular vocations: • Invite priests and religious to dinner at your home. • Show your children a good example of holy marriage. • Pray daily for more priestly and religious vocations–maybe along with your regular dinner or night prayers. • Read and discuss the Bible stories of Mary’s response to God (Luke 1:26-39), and Jesus calling the Apostles (Mt 4:18-22). • Speak openly about vocations to marriage, priesthood and religious life. If your child does express interest in priesthood or religious life, be supportive. If you are excited, don’t push too hard. If you are apprehensive, trust in God’s plan. The best thing you can say is, “Whatever God wants for you, I want for you, too.” Thank you for your assistance in promoting vocations in our diocese. Our Lord has provided plenty of work in His vineyard. Feel free to contact me to talk about ways you can help encourage vocations. God bless you! JULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


People long for spiritual home an inviting parish, says Francis Beth Griffin Catholic News Service


eople long for a spiritual home and Catholics expect to find it at their parish, with a pastor who provides a rich diet of spiritual food and “meets people where they are,” Franciscan Sister Katarina Schuth told a New York audience June 7. Catholics want their parish to be an inviting place, she said. Priests can preach about sin, but they don’t have to focus on it. Sister Schuth, a professor of social scientific study of religion at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., delivered the 15th annual Philip J. Murnion Lecture, “Shaping Parish Life: Ongoing Influences of Vatican II and the Catholic Common Ground Initiative.” The event was held at the headquarters of the American Bible Society. Msgr. Murnion, who was ordained in 1963 and died in 2003, was the founding director of the National Pastoral Life Center in New York. The center pioneered programs to help diocesan and parish workers implement the vision of the Second Vatican Council in their ministries

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and became the home of the Catholic Common Ground Initiative. Using the outline of Msgr. Murnion’s priestly career, Sister Schuth traced the development of parish life from 1963 to the present. One of the biggest changes is in personnel, she said. In 1963, there were more than 56,000 priests serving 44 million Catholics in 17,000 parishes. Counting religious men and women, there were 179 Catholics per priest and religious in 1963. With a drop in vocations to the priesthood and religious life, and an increase in the number of Catholics and parishes, there are now 687 Catholics per priest and religious. There are now approximately 68 million Catholics in 18,000 parishes. Nationwide, there are fewer than 40,000 diocesan and religious order priests. The lower numbers of men and women religious have had the greatest impact in education, she said, where lay employees have stepped in to fill the gap. In addition, the growth in the number of international priests “has changed the face of the Catholic church in dramatic ways,” Sister Schuth said. Foreign-born priests now comprise one-quarter of active priests and one-third of seminarians. It is difficult for some parishes to adjust to this, she said. Fifty years ago, well-seasoned pastors who likely served 25 years as an assistant before being named a pastor led parishes. There was no actual mentoring program and newly ordained

priests learned by watching and doing. “Deacon” referred to a young man awaiting priestly ordination. Now, many priests become pastors before they reach the fifth anniversary of ordination. And they serve beyond the traditional retirement age of 65 years. Two-thirds of dioceses in the United States have fewer active priests than parishes and associate pastors are increasingly rare, “except for the largest parishes in the most ‘priest-rich dioceses,’” Sister Schuth said. With clustering and merging of parishes, she said, “About a third of all pastors are serving several parishes.” The church has survived because of the ascendancy of paid and volunteer lay ministers and ordained deacons, she said. Paid lay ministers were uncounted until the 1970s, but now number more than 40,000, Sister Schuth said. There are nearly 18,000 permanent deacons. Msgr. Murnion’s efforts to envision and support vibrant parishes relied on a deep understanding of the Incarnation and a commitment to dialogue, partnership and collaboration among all levels of the church, Sister Schuth said. “He was always conscious of the wide variety of parish structures and practices with their prevailing ecclesiologies. He described those with centralized authority and devotional piety on one side and egalitarian style with a social dimension and broad participation on the other. Yet he was attentive to the needs of all and looked


e, scan nun for that which united, rather than that which divided,” she said. The parish is a pastoral entity at the center of the continuum, “accountable to official teaching and norms but accommodating to local cultures and individual needs,” she said. Excellent parishes consult and engage the people, develop mission statements, use pastoral planning, analyze the needs of parishioners, organize activities and “communicate, interact, relate and dialogue across many parish entities and the universal church,” she said. People no longer feel an obligation to attend a territorial church and will travel outside their neighborhood to find a parish that meets their needs, she said. Kevin Ahern, a doctoral candidate in theological ethics at Boston College, responded to Sister Schuth’s lecture. He said the global reality of the local church is a blessing and a challenge. Newcomers bring richness and vitality, and challenge racism and prejudice, he said. Parishes must find strategies to make the transition to multiculturalism, he said. Ahern said the de-territorialization of the parish would either bring people together or create ecclesial enclaves some call “boutique parishes.” Parish leaders are challenged to bring parishioners together intentionally, while respecting their needs for different styles of worship and service, he said.

The Obama administration says it will no longer fight age restrictions on the sale of emergency contraception pills, making the morning-after pill available without a prescription to all women and girls. The U.S. Department of Justice said in a letter June 10 that it would comply with a court’s ruling to allow the unrestricted sales, withdrawing its appeal on the matter. Shannon Stapleton, Reuters,Texas Catholic

Obama administration drops fight to limit age restrictions on Plan B Carol Zimmermann Catholic News Service


.S. Catholic officials expressed disappointment with the June 10 announcement that the federal government will comply with a judge’s ruling to allow girls of any age to buy the morning-after pill without a prescription.

The decision reversed recent course of action by the federal government. On May 1, the Justice Department announced that it would appeal a ruling by a federal judge in early April that said the Food and Drug Administration must make emergency contraceptives available to all ages by May 6. In a June 10 letter to U.S. District Judge Edward Korman in Brooklyn, N.Y., department officials said they will submit a plan for compliance with his ruling and will drop their appeal. The letter also said the FDA has advised the drug’s manufacturer to submit an application to make Plan JULY JULY 2013 2013 || SOUTH SOUTH TEX TEXAS AS CATHOLIC CATHOLIC

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B One-Step available over the counter without restrictions. News reports June 11 said the Justice Department also told the judge it will not make available over the counter the two-pill Plan B product, which it described as being significantly different from the one-pill version. Two-pill generic versions of Plan B would remain behind store counters and require a prescription and ID for those under the age of 17. Plan B, known generically as levonorgestrel, uses large doses of birthcontrol pills to prevent conception up to 72 hours after unprotected sex. According to the FDA, it will “not stop a pregnancy when a woman is already pregnant, and there is no medical evidence that the product will harm a developing fetus.” Catholic officials faulted the federal government’s decision and some groups advocating women’s rights called it a step forward and a public

health benefit. Deirdre McQuade, spokeswoman for the USCCB’s Secretariat for Pro Life Activities, said in a June 11 email to Catholic News Service: “Many studies have shown that wider access to ‘emergency contraception’ among young people does not reduce pregnancy or abortion rates, but can contribute to higher rates of sexually transmitted disease. No public health consideration justifies the unregulated distribution of such drugs to children.” Jeanne Monahan, president of the March for Life Education & Defense Fund, called the decision “hugely disappointing and not in the best interest of young women’s physical and emotional health.” John DiCamillo, an ethicist with the National Catholic Bioethics Center in Philadelphia called the government’s decision “a great disservice” that “brings profound moral harm to

our society.” In a June 11 email to CNS, he said the wider availability of levonorgestrel in its pill form “continues to promote and entrench the contraception and abortion mentality that undermines the culture of life.” He noted that the National Catholic Bioethics Center is “not a scientific research body and does not itself determine whether Plan B or other levonorgestrel-based ‘emergency contraceptives’ are abortifacients.” But he said a close analysis of the scientific and pharmacological literature indicates that this drug “can and very likely does act as an abortifacient when taken after ovulation has already occurred.” In early June, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit said it would immediately permit unrestricted sales of the two-pill version of the emergency contraception until the appeal was decided.

3rd Annual St. Paul School of Catechesis Adult Formation Summer Camp Join us July 8 - 13 at Corpus Christi Cathedral. Walk-ins are welcomed! See the courses offered below! Registration is $20 per workshop and includes meals. Those seeking credit for commissioning through the SPSC must attend all days per workshop(s). Limit 1 workshop per section. (C) Core Workshop (E) Elective Workshop Section 1: Monday & Tuesday (9am—4pm)

Section 3: Friday & Saturday (9am—4pm)

7/8 & 7/9 Evangelization & Catechesis—Joe Cipriano (C)

7/12 & 7/13 Evangelization & Catechesis—Dr. David Emrich (C)

7/8 & 7/9 Ministry with Family 101—Deacon S. Nolte/Lydia Pesina (E)

7/12 & 7/13 Liturgy & Sacraments—Yvonne Youngblood (C)

7/8 & 7/9 Old & New Testament—Benjamin Nye (C)

7/12 & 7/13 RCIA Skills—Mary Christmas (E)

7/8 & 7/9 Youth Ministry Concepts—Deacon A. Ramirez (E)

7/12 & 7/13 Prayer & Spirituality—Deacon A. Provencio (C)

Section 2: Wednesday & Thursday (9am—4pm)

Section 4: Monday-Friday (5pm—8pm)

7/10 & 7/11 Catholic Doctrine—Yvonne Youngblood (C)

7/8-7/12 Catholic Doctrine—Emily Nye (C)

7/10 & 7/11 Respect Life—Deacon S. Nolte (E)

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Pope, Anglican leader meet, pledge to continue search for unity Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service


ope Francis and Anglican Archbishop Justin Welby of Canterbury, spiritual leader of the Anglican Communion, pledged to support each other with their prayers and to continue the search for full unity between their communities. Meeting at the Vatican June 14, praying together in the Redemptoris Mater Chapel in the Apostolic Palace and eating lunch together in the papal residence, both remarked on the fact that Pope Francis’ inaugural Mass was celebrated March 19 and Archbishop Welby’s installation was March 21. “Since we began our respective ministries within days of each other, I think we will always have a particular reason to support one another in prayer,” Pope Francis said. He also thanked the new Anglican leader for praying for him during his installation at Canterbury Cathedral. Archbishop Welby told him, “I pray that the nearness of our two inaugurations may serve the reconciliation of the world and the church.”

Pope Francis exchanges gifts with the Anglican Archbishop Justin Welby of Canterbury, England, during a private audience at the Vatican June 14. Stefano Spaziani, Catholic News Service

The two spent more than 30 minutes meeting privately, with an interpreter, before giving their speeches, exchanging gifts and joining about 100 Catholics and Anglicans from Rome for the prayer in the Redemptoris Mater Chapel. In their speeches, the two Christians leaders did not ignore the issues that have stalled hopes for unity in recent years. “The history of relations between the Church of England and the Catholic Church is long and complex and not without pain,” Pope Francis told Archbishop Welby. However, he said, “firm bonds of friendship have enabled us to remain on course even when difficulties have arisen in our theological dialogue that were greater than we could have foreseen at the

start of our journey.” In recent years, the CatholicAnglican dialogue -- like the Anglican Communion itself -- has had to deal with differences over the ordination of women as priests and bishops, with the blessing of homosexual unions in some Anglican communities and with questions regarding the ordination of openly gay bishops. In response to requests from Anglicans who wanted to join the Catholic Church, but also wanted to preserve their Anglican spiritual and liturgical heritage, Pope Benedict XVI in 2009 established Anglican ordinariates, jurisdictions similar to dioceses. Pope Francis thanked the Anglicans for making “sincere efforts” to understand Pope Benedict’s proviJULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


sions. The Anglican ordinariates, he said, “will enable the spiritual, liturgical and pastoral traditions that form the Anglican patrimony to be better known and appreciated in the Catholic world.” Despite new challenges, the pope said, Catholics and Anglicans recognize their shared obligations to work for the unity Christ desired, to proclaim the Gospel, to defend Christian values and to serve the poor and speak on their behalf. Pope Francis said the joint witness of Christian values is especially important today “in a world that seems at times to call into question some of the foundations of society, such as respect for the sacredness of human life or the importance of the institution of the family built on marriage, a value that you yourself have had occasion to recall recently,” the pope told the archbishop. In early June, Archbishop Welby criticized a proposed bill in the British Parliament to recognize gay marriage. The archbishop said with the bill, “the concept of marriage as a normative place for procreation is lost. The idea of marriage as covenant is diminished. The family in its normal sense predating the state and as our base community of society is weakened.” Like Pope Francis, Archbishop Welby has been an outspoken critic of the way modern financial and economic structures place profit above the good of persons. “We share many ideas” on the topics of economics, social justice and peace, Pope Francis told him. “As you yourself have observed, we Christians bring peace and grace as a treasure to be offered to the world, but these gifts can bear fruit only when Christians live and work together in harmony.” Archbishop Welby told the pope that for many years he has “found inspiration in the great corpus of Catholic social teaching and worked on its implications with Catholic groups.” “We must love those who seek to oppose us,” the archbishop said, “and love above all those tossed aside -- even whole nations -- by the present crises around the world.” “Even as we speak,” he said, “our brothers and sisters in Christ suffer terribly from violence, oppression and war, from bad government and unjust economic systems. If we are not their advocates in the name of Christ, who will be?” The ecumenical journey “is testing and we cannot be unaware that differences exist about how we bring the Christian faith to bear on the challenges thrown up by modern society,” Archbishop Welby said. However, friendship makes it possible to discuss the differences and “to be open to sharing the discernment of a way forward that is faithful to the mind of Christ.”



What the po really tells u Francis X. Rocca Catholic News Service


report that Pope Francis privately acknowledged the existence of a “gay lobby” inside the Vatican offers a sensational example of his unvarnished speaking style. The context of the headline-grabbing comment is a series of remarks most illuminating for what they reveal: not about divisions within the church, but about Pope Francis’ vision of its harmony and unity. Pope Francis’ words to the leaders of the Latin American and Caribbean Confederation of Men and Women Religious, or CLAR, as originally reported on a website in Chile, have not been denied by anyone who was there. A statement from CLAR -- issued after the Chilean report -- described the leaked account of the June 6 Vatican meeting as a “summary based on the memories of the participants” and a reliable record of the pope’s “general meaning,” though not a verbatim transcript. Speaking to his fellow Latin American religious, the first Jesuit pope touched on some of the major points of tension that have marked relations between religious orders and the hierarchy in recent decades. He did so in a manner at once conciliatory and firm, both encouraging and sober in its assessment of the church’s problems. He urged the religious to “put all your commitment into dialogue with the bishops,” even though “there are some (bishops) who have another idea of communion” from that held by many religious. The pope also counseled his visitors to take a constructive attitude toward criticism and discipline from the Vatican. “Maybe you will get a letter from the Congregation for the Doctrine (of the Faith) saying that you said this or that,” the pope reportedly said. “But don’t worry. Explain what you have to explain, but keep going.”

ope’s leaked comments us about the church While affirming the reality of error and the hierarchy’s responsibility to correct it, his emphasis was on forgiveness. “You are going to make mistakes, you are going to put your foot in it. That happens!” he said. “I prefer a church that makes mistakes because it is doing something to one that sickens because it stays shut in.” Yet, Pope Francis did not hesitate to classify certain trends in the contemporary church as manifestations of ancient heresies. As an example of Gnosticism, he cited the case of an unnamed superior general of a congregation of women religious who encouraged members to “take a spiritual bath in the cosmos” in lieu of morning prayer. Complaints about such innovations by religious orders are by now a familiar refrain from bishops, but the pope added what some might find a surprising link between doctrinal fidelity and the church’s commitment to social justice.

Expressions of “pantheism” such as the sister’s worry him; the pope is quoted as saying, “because they skip the incarnation! And the Son of God was made our flesh, the word was made flesh, and in Latin America we have flesh to spare! What happens with the poor, the pains, that is our flesh....” The pope also drew a link between the church’s social and moral teaching by relating economic injustice and legalized abortion in an analysis that defies any division between “social justice” and “pro-life” categories of Catholicism. “Abortion is bad...But behind the approval of this law, what interests are behind it...” In an apparent reference to international organizations and private foundations that promote population control in underdeveloped countries, he added, “they are at times the conditions placed by the great groups to support with money.”


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Perversions and purposes in human sexuality Father Tadeueusz Pacholczyk, Ph.D.

M Columnist

any of us have probably heard single women talking among themselves about men, where one of them ends up saying, “That guy, he’s just a pervert – he’s only interested in sex.” When women detect that a man’s focus has become the pursuit of pleasure, and that unbridled sex has become an end in itself, they tend instinctively to back away. Women often intuitively understand that sex cannot be reduced to mere pleasure without hurting both individuals involved, and negating other important goods, like love, family, children and marriage. It becomes a “perversion” when we attempt to redirect sex into something of our own specifications, refocusing it into a form of worldly pleasure seeking and self-satisfaction. Sigmund Freud, whom no one could accuse of prudery, recognized the basic features of a perversion in the sexual realm when he declared, “The common characteristic of all perversions…is that they have abandoned reproduction as their aim. We term sexual activity perverse when it has renounced the aim of reproduction and follows the pursuit of pleasure as an independent goal.” No age has ever sought to abandon the reproductive aim of sexual activity as much as our own. This is particularly manifested as our society yields to the seductive siren call of contraception,



broadly encouraging the separation of sexual intimacy from procreation. A 2013 Gallup poll reported that 91 percent believed birth control to be morally acceptable. Professor Robert George of Princeton University has noted that marriage is increasingly coming to be understood as “an emotional union for the sake of adult satisfaction that is served by mutually agreeable sexual play.” Without the self-sacrificing dimension of sex (involving the acceptance of new life), individuals are left in the position of amiably using one another. If seeking sex while blocking the possibility of reproduction is a form of sexual perversion, perhaps it is unsurprising that other forms of inherently non-procreative sex, that is to say, other sexual perversions, are rapidly expanding alongside the practice of contraception. In recent times, we have witnessed an unparalleled countermanding of the life-giving dimension of the sexual act through the acceptance of non-complementary forms of bodily union including homosexual and lesbian sex, oral sex and anal sex. A very significant jump of 19 percent in approval over the past 12 years for “gay or lesbian relations” was highlighted in the same 2013 Gallup poll. Culturally, sex is subtly changing into a casual encounter subject to one’s own manipulation and determination, with pleasure serving as its central engine and rationale. Put simply, it is degenerating into a new reality before our eyes, cut out of the whole cloth of perversion, with the promotion of sexual activity in ways that are powerfully at odds with its proper context and purpose. Sex has a unique bonding or cementing power between a man and

Making Sense out of

BIOETHICS a woman, because the sexual instinct is clearly bound up with the whole emotional, affective and interpersonal life of man and woman. Given this fact, real interpersonal harms and significant possibilities for selfishness and exploitation arise whenever individuals choose to act on this instinct in a context apart from marriage. Indeed, sex is never a reasonable choice in the absence of commitment, particularly a permanent commitment, between a man and a woman. This flows in part from the fact that it brings new lives into the world, and those lives are vulnerable and dependent, necessitating a mother and a father who are committed to each other and to the children arising from their permanent union. It is remarkable how much consternation it causes today to point out what has long been obvious, namely, that sex and marriage must be integrally connected, and that in the final analysis, marriage must remain the unique and exclusive setting for human sexual activity. Through matrimonial consent, man and woman deliver and accept the exclusive and perpetual bond that allows them to carry out acts apt in themselves for the procreation of offspring. The obvious corollary is that sexual relations of any kind in a non-marital context will invariably be immoral, including forms of pre- and extra-marital

sex and the use of pornography and masturbation. Indeed, it is imperative today that we work to re-connect the gratification of the sexual urge with the beautiful sharing of life between man and woman in matrimony. The deep-seated sex instinct moves men and women to embrace great sacrifices, such as are required in marriage and procreation, for the fulfillment of this remarkable human drive. We are challenged today, like never before, to step away courageously from sexual perversions in all their de-

structive and everVIEWPOINTS expanding forms, and to return to an ordered vision of sexuality within marriage, directed to the authentic good of individuals and society. (Father Tadeusz Pacholczyk, Ph.D. is a priest of the diocese of Fall River, MA, and serves as the Director of Education at the National Catholic Bioethics Center in Philadelphia, www.

Help us be good stewards Alfredo E. Cardenas


South Texas Catholic

rom the beginning of my tenure as editor of the South Texas Catholic, I have strived to be a good steward of the resources entrusted to me. It has been a challenge to balance the need to care for resources while doing the most with the resources to effectively carry out the mission we are called to do–to evangelize. The South Texas Catholic–to my knowledge–has always been a free publication used by the Diocese of Corpus Christi to evangelize the faith community in south Texas. It is funded by contributions made directly to our annual appeal and by contributions parishioners from throughout the diocese make to the annual Catholic Stewardship Appeal. To receive the publication all one has to do is register at their parish, participate in the Catholic Stewardship Appeal or merely ask to be included in the subscription list. Over the years, unfortunately, this list has become unreliable and consequently we often get magazines returned

by the post office because of bad addresses. People move and do not let their parish or the South Texas Catholic know of their new address. Sadly, too often we receive calls or letters from readers to tell us their parents have both gone to the Lord and for us to stop the subscription. Often, people make multiple contributions to the appeal and we end up sending magazines to Mr. Smith, Mrs. Smith and Mr. and Mrs. Smith, all at the same address. In today’s world that is connected via the Internet, many people prefer to read their magazine online at They toss the magazine aside and sit at their computer to read. To more wisely use your generous contributions, the South Texas Catholic is evaluating and updating its subscription list, which will include eliminating and taking into account all these circumstances. Paying to print, mail and then for returned postage is a costly process. Our goal is to mail only to readers that have a valid address and who want to continue to receive the magazine. In the front of this issue we have included a post card that already has the reader’s name, account number and mailing address. All the reader has to do is cut it out along the perforated lines, place a stamp on

it and drop it into the mail. We invite all readers to use the post card to confirm their interest in continuing to receive the South Texas Catholic. In this way we will be able to “clean” our subscription list. If you have made a contribution to the Catholic Stewardship Appeal within the last five years AND have not had a major life change, such as a change of address, you do not need to return this card. You will continue to receive the South Texas Catholic. We will provide this post card in this and the next issue, after which we will only mail to those who have sent us a post card indicating their wish to continue to receive the South Texas Catholic. We do not want to leave anyone off the list that wants the magazine but we also do not want to pay for printing, mailing and returned postage if it is not necessary. Thank you for your cooperation to this request, and thank you for all the kind compliments you have been sending to us regarding the conversion to a magazine format. We are truly grateful for your support. JULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


The last CounterReformation pope George Weigel Columnist


hen he was elected as Paul VI just 50 years ago, Giovanni Battista Montini seemed the perfectly prepared pope.

Montini was the son of a middle-class family of Italian professionals with good Vatican ties. A competent linguist who had enjoyed a distinguished career in the Holy See’s diplomatic service, he was also a man of pastoral sensibilities, having done a lot of youth work as a young priest and curialist. He had seen the papacy from the inside, as a key aide to Pius XII, and he had been the successful archbishop of a major Italian see, Milan. In 1963, all of that was “the more-or-less normal way” a man became pope, as one of those who helped elect Montini, Cardinal Franz Koenig of Vienna, put it to me in 1997. Yet this broadly cultured and deeply pious man suffered through such a turbulent pontificate that, when he died in August 1978, many wondered aloud whether anyone could do the job under late 20th century circumstances. With John Paul II, the answer to that skepticism turned out to be a resounding “Yes”—but only if a pontiff was prepared to challenge the traditional managers of popes and re-boot the Petrine Office as one of evangelical witness. Thus, in the retrospect of a half-century, the troubled pontificate of Paul VI comes into clearer focus as the last papacy of the Counter-Reformation Church—and the threshold to the papacy of the future, the papacy of Evangelical Catholicism. Paul VI, to be sure, helped hasten that transition. He brought the Second Vatican Council to a successful close—although he did not provide keys for the authentic interpretation of the Council’s accomplishment, leaving that task to John Paul II and Benedict XVI. The lack of such keys during the 13 years between the Council’s conclusion and Pope Paul’s death was one reason why the wheels seemed to fly off the Catholic Church for two decades. Amidst the chaos, Paul VI tried to craft an exercise of the papacy adequate to the Church’s reformed self-understanding as a communion of disciples in mission. Yet virtually every one of his accomplishments in implementing the



Council had its The Catholic shadow-side. Difference He largely dismantled the papal court; but at his death, the Roman Curia was seriously dysfunctional, and today serious questions are being asked about Pope Paul’s decision to make the Secretariat of State a kind of superagency at the apex of a curial pyramid. He implemented a reform of the Church’s liturgy that was broadly accepted throughout the world Church; but the abuses of the Missal he introduced in 1970 were so grave that his successors were obliged to institute a “reform of the reform” in order to salvage the dignity of Catholic worship—and to remind the Church that worship is what liturgy is about. He correctly decoded the impact of the oral contraceptive pill on society; but his defense of the Church’s teaching on the morally proper means of regulating fertility was couched in a language that few could hear, and it was left to John Paul II to devise a compelling Catholic response to the sexual revolution in all its dimensions. He wanted the Church’s bishops to follow the lead of Vatican II and see themselves first and foremost as teachers and sanctifiers; but he not infrequently appointed bishops with a tendency to liberal authoritarianism to key positions in their respective countries, with grave effects on episcopal leadership throughout the world. There was one accomplishment of the man we now know as Venerable Paul VI that remains unshadowed, however, and that was his insistence at the end of his life that the Church recover its missionary fervor, seeing both the evangelization of the unevangelized and the re-evangelization of the lax and fallen-away as its first order of business. Pope Paul’s 1975 apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Nuntiandi (Proclaiming the Gospel), was a crucial moment in the emergence of the Evangelical Catholicism of the 21st century and the third millennium. That ggreat document is the bridge between his time and ours. (George Weigel is Distinguished Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C. The Denver Catholic Register distributes his column.)


Through Him all things were made Father J. Patrick Serna Contributor


he first sentence of the first chapter of the Gospel of John tells us, “In the beginning was the logos.” The Koine Greek word “logos” is translated in most vernacular bibles today as “word,” but it can also mean “reason.” The logos, or Word, or Reason, is the second Person of the Trinity, God the Son. The Incarnation was the moment when the Eternal Word assumed human nature and took on human flesh, reducing Himself to time and space in the womb of the Virgin Mary. Saint Bonaventure believed that hints of the Trinitarian God were present in the opening words of Genesis, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth...the Spirit of God was stirring above the waters.” The Bible frequently refers to God the Father as “God,” we can know that God the Son is being referred to when “in the beginning” is declared, keeping in mind that He is “... the beginning and the end” (Rv 22:13), and we know that the third person of the Trinity is being referred to when “Spirit” is mentioned. What is hidden in the Old Testament becomes manifest and clear in the New!

Our Catholic Faith In “The Breviloquium,” Saint Bonaventure says that God creates ex nihilo, out of nothingness, and states that, “…creation out of nothingness implies on the part of the creature a state of being subsequent upon a state of non-being, and on the part of the creating principle, a boundless productive power which is found in God alone.” Saint Thomas Aquinas gives us three important truths about the Word in his “Commentary on John,” where he writes, “In saying all things were created through Him, you have according to St. Chrysostom, the equality of the Word with the Father; the coeternity of the Word with the Father, according to St. Hilary; and the consubstantiality of the Word with the Father according to St. Augustine.” One might be inclined to think that the Son is in some way inferior to the Father when the words “through Him” are used, but Aquinas says, “...the preposition ‘through’ does not signify any inferiority in the Son when all things are said to have been made through Him.” (Commentary on John 2.75) Something can exist in one of two ways, one way is necessarily, and the other way is contingently. Philosophy can show us that there is an uncreated being who has necessary existence and is self-sufficient in its mode of being. This uncreated being gives existence to contingent entities, which do not have existence or being in a self sufficient way.

As you strive to understand how God the Father

creates through God the

Son, use this image which saints before us have

used: God the Father is

mind, God the Holy Spirit is breath and God the

Son is the Word which

expresses the mind of God the Father by means of the breath of the Holy Spirit.



In the work “On God as First Principle,” Blessed John we are able to better understand the words of Hebrews Duns Scotus tells us that an entity can exist, 1) Contin1:3, “He is the radiance of His glory and the exact repgently, which means that it, “...can exist after being nonresentation of His nature, and upholds all things by the existent, not of itself, however, or by reason of nothing, word of His power.” for in both cases a being would exist by reason of what In attempting to love God with all your heart, all your is not a being...” or, 2) Necessarily, which means that it soul and all your might (Dt 6:5), it is not enough to do cannot “...receive existence from something else, it exists theology only while failing to have a healthy sacramental of itself.” The foregoing philosophical conclusions give us and prayer life. Similarly, in trying to love God totally, it is a basic knowledge about a necessary being which enjoys not enough to approach God with feelings or sentiments existence from itself, but gives existence to contingent only. We are called to sacramental lives of prayer, while realities. Theology and divine revelation pick up where also incorporating our God given intellects and wills. By philosophy leaves off. living a sacramental life of prayer and theological reflecWe know in faith from Proverbs 3:19 that, “The Lord tion, the Christian gives glory to the Incarnate Reason, by wisdom founded the earth, by understanding He Who creates everything according to order, measure and established the heavens.” God the Son is referred to in beauty. Holy Scripture as “...the power of God, and the wisdom of God.” (1 Cor 1:24) Saint Thomas Aquinas tells us that “...the Father does all things through the Son, that is, through His wisdom.” (Commentary on John 76) I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and The eternal logos is the eternal Word, or, eternal Reason. God earth, of all things visible and invisible. I believe in one Lord the Father, through The Word, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, born of the Father created and creates a universe which is woven on the fabric of before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from intelligent design and beauty. true God, begotten not made, consubstantial with the Father; Stars, planets and other large objects in the created universe through Him all things were made. For us men and for our obey intelligent laws of gravity salvation He came down from heaven, and by the Holy Spirit and motion. Atoms, molecules and living organic cells also folwas incarnate of the Virgin Mary and became man. For our low intelligent rules and laws, sake He was crucified under Pontius Pilate, He suffered death and all these invisible ordering principles are from God the Faand was buried, and rose again on the third day in accordance ther through God the Son, the Eternal Logos/Reason. with the Scriptures. He ascended into heaven and is seated at As you strive to understand the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to how God the Father creates through God the Son, use this judge the living and the dead and His kingdom will have no image which saints before us end. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord the giver of life, who have used: God the Father is mind, God the Holy Spirit is proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father breath and God the Son is the and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through Word which expresses the mind of God the Father by means of the Prophets. I believe in one holy, Catholic, and apostolic the breath of the Holy Spirit. Church. I confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins and I The expression of this Word encompasses, contains and reflects look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the everything in this magnificent uncreated mind. Using this analworld to come. Amen. ogy of mind, breath and word,

Nicene Creed



Growth in prayer Sister Kathleen McDonagh, IWBS Columnist


oward the end of our last article on “Growth in Prayer,” we mentioned “my sense of loss when, as happens from time to time, I cannot seem to find Him (God).” Often, when called to a new step in our relationship with God, we experience a great joy at relating to Him in a special way because, at this time, He seems very close. We can pour out our thoughts and our feelings toward Him and rejoice in being so close to Him. But this sense of His closeness does not last indefinitely, and then, we experience a sense of loss, deep or otherwise, when He seems far away, and cannot seem to return to our sense of closeness to Him. We have to become aware that prayer is not primarily built on feelings, positive or negative. Prayer is a response to a call from God, a response made in faith. And that response does not necessarily demand many words. In fact, as our prayer grows in depth, it will probably grow, Benignus O’ Rourke writes in “Finding Your Hidden Treasure,” from “many words to few words, from few words to one word, and from one word into silence” because “the deepest communion with God comes through silence.” Silent prayer, then, is a real possibility. It is a form of prayer in which we remain still before God and rest in His love. In the beginning, experiencing such a change in our prayer life does not come easily to many of us because we do not appreciate silence in any facet of our lives. We are used to continual chatter with each other, always sharing, when we do share, through words and actions. If we experience a call to quiet in our prayer or any other part of our lives and respond to that call, we often give up after a short time of quiet, saying to ourselves or to others, as the case may be, “I can’t pray today.” But, in fact, the time of quiet can be and is a time of very real prayer if it is a part of (or most of) our time of resting in God. If we have taken the step of being one with Him in our silence, we have moved forward in a very important way in deepening our prayer life. Having experienced a tremendous growth in his relationship with God, Saint Augustine wrote in “Confessions”, “Late

have I loved you, O Beauty both ancient and new, late have I loved you. You were within me, but I was outside… You were with me, but I was not with you…” For Augustine, this was a major development in his life. He had discovered the real Christ. But Augustine did not come to this major development in prayer all at once, and neither do we. First, we have to know that it is a real possibility, that we will come to it through a period of lack of feeling when we may feel inclined to say to ourselves, “Oh, what’s the use of this waste of time? I can’t say even the most ordinary prayers.” No, we cannot say even the most ordinary prayers because God is calling us to something different. We need to listen and respond to this call–to go through this period of seeming lack of ability to pray. This, however, is “seeming” only. Our efforts to connect with God result in a real connection with Him which is real prayer. But it is strange and different to our previous experiences; therefore, we find it very difficult to recognize it as prayer. If we persevere, however, asking God’s help, we will come to realize that the silence we experience is not just a lack of noise. Perhaps we can recall times when we were happy to be with another human being, neither one talking to the other, both intent on a project of great personal interest. If someone had stopped by and said with curiosity, “Why aren’t you two talking to each other?” we might have looked at each other in puzzlement. Then when we stopped to consider the situation, we might have come to the conclusion that, while we were not talking to each other, we were communicating a sense of happiness in each other’s company, a sense of shared friendship. Can we do this with God? Can we communicate our love of Him and joy in His presence without using words? It is a real step forward in our prayer life if we can. Communicating with God without words is a source of great grace and blessing for us. But if our growth in prayer thus far has been development in vocal prayer only, then we have much to learn about the possibility of prayer without words. When God calls us to non-vocal prayer, let us respond as deeply as possible, trusting Him to lead us into deeper experiy even if, as of now, we hardly know what that ences of prayer may mean. JULY 2013 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


The assent of love Deacon Stephen Nolte Contributor


he fundamental vocation of every human person directs men and women to seek God, to know him and to love him with all their strength. Inspired and called by Jesus Christ, His Son, the entire faithful are to hand on from generation to generation to God’s invitation for us to participate in His divine life. We accomplish this by professing the faith by which we know Him, by living it through fraternal sharing, and by celebrating it in liturgy and prayer. (CCC 1, 3) The real question for us is how do we come to understand this and live it out in practical terms? We begin by recognizing that all of creation flows out of love and into love. We are brought into being by the love of God and His desire to share His love. He breathes life into us through the Spirit of love, the Holy Spirit. This breath of life instills in us His image and likeness. Through this gift we are called to live in a manner that reflects God’s inner life as three persons in one Godhead. This is a life of communal love, a life of relationship. For this reason we exist only to love and to do so in communion with others. How we go about doing this depends upon God’s will for each one of us. Because we are created in love and for love, God’s will for us, can only be love. It is not something we can seek to gain; rather, it is God’s free gift of relationship in His love. This will of God is a freedom embedded deep within the human heart, it is a freedom for love, and it is only within this freedom that we can discover the giftedness of our humanity. This freedom allows us to become the human person God created us to be. It is for this purpose that the human heart longs for love and seeks to find it in the experiences of life. All too often we allow ourselves to be misguided in our seeking for love. If we are to discover who and what God created us to be, we must seek to discern the particular expression of love He has for us as individuals. The secret of our life and identity as individuals lies in God. The love by which He brought us into existence contains the very secret of our identity and the reason for which we exist. To begin with, we must learn to love ourselves, not



with a selfish or disordered self-love, but with the love of self as God created us to be. The problem is that we cannot find our true self because we want to be something other than what God created us to be. We might feel the need to be a particular way so others will find us more attractive or desirable for friendship. We seek to obtain material things believing that they will bring us joy or happiness by relieving us of stress or work. Part of discovering who God created us to be is to find where our talents and natural abilities lie. This knowledge leads us to the vocation God desires for us to enable us to live out and express the love He has given us. Vocation is defined as a divine call to God’s service or to the Christian life, and in a particular way, a call by God to a function or station in life, such as the religious or priestly vocation, or the vocation of marriage. The vocation to marriage calls individuals to enter into a sacramental relationship with one another and God. It is a calling that brings men and women together in a manner that befits the dignity of their complementary natures. From the beginning of society, man and woman have come together to receive the nuptial blessing given to them by God. Before couples express their marriage vows in the rite of matrimony, the priest or deacon asks them to state their intentions by answering three questions. “Have you come here freely and without reservation to give yourselves to each other in marriage? Will you love and honor each other as man and wife for the rest of your lives? Will you accept children lovingly from God, and bring them up according to the law of Christ and His Church?” The answers to these questions form the basis of the individuals’ consent as a couple and therefore the basis of their marriage. Without this consent, there can be no assent, no yes to love. In response to the question of how they met and what brought them together, couples often express how they fell in love. This in itself presents a subtle distortion of the nature

Vocation is defined as a divine call to God’s service or to the Christian life, and in a particular way, a call by God to a function or station in life, such as the religious or priestly vocation, or the vocation of marriage. of love, because love demands a rising above oneself for the good of the beloved. In the New American Bible, chapter three of Genesis is titled “The Fall of Man.” We commonly refer to it as the fall from grace or man’s fall into original sin. If we fall into sin, how can we realistically expect to “fall in love?” Falling is a lowering of the ideal to which we are called to live; rising elevates us to something beyond ourselves. There is an ascent necessary to truly love. St. Bonaventure tells us that, “No one can be happy unless he or she rises above oneself by an ascent (a rising) of the heart. But we cannot rise above ourselves unless a higher power lifts us up.” That higher power is God’s love, and

prayer is the source of the ascent of love. If we desire happiness we must seek the will of God, and we must be willing to give our assent, our yes to His will. It is only there that we can discover true love and from it, true happiness. The human person, in its fullest expression, finds his or her fulfillment in doing the will of God, in living the vocation to which they are called in response to God’s call of love. Unless we give our yes, our assent to love, we can never ascend the heights to which God calls us, the heights of love. Therefore, let us seek our ascent to love through the giving of our assent to love.

JULY LITURGICAL CALENDAR July 1 Mon Weekday green/white [Blessed Junípero Serra, Priest] Gn 18:16-33/Mt 8:18-22 (377) July 2 Tue Weekday green | Gn 19:15-29/Mt 8:23-27 (378) July 3 Wed Saint Thomas, Apostle red | Feast | Eph 2:19-22/Jn 20:2429 (593) Pss Prop

Is 66:10-14c/Gal 6:14-18/Lk 10:112, 17-20 or 10:1-9 (102) Pss II July 8 Mon Weekday green | Gn 28:10-22a/Mt 9:18-26 (383) July 9 Tue Weekday green/red [Saint Augustine Zhao Rong, Priest, and Companions, Martyrs] Gn 32:23-33/Mt 9:32-38 (384)

10:34—11:1 (389) July 16 Tue Weekday green/white [Our Lady of Mount Carmel] Ex 2:1-15a/Mt 11:20-24 (390) July 17 Wed Weekday green | Ex 3:1-6, 9-12/Mt 11:25-27 (391)

July 24 Wed Weekday green/white | Saint Sharbel Makhl f, Priest] Ex 16:1-5, 9-15/Mt 13:1-9 (397) July 25 Thu Saint James, Apostle red | Feast | 2 Cor 4:7-15/Mt 20:20-28 (605) Pss Prop

July 18 Thu Weekday green/white [Saint Camillus de Lellis, Priest] | Ex 3:13-20/Mt 11:28-30 (392)

July 26 Fri Saints Joachim and Anne, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary white | Memorial | Ex 20:1-17/Mt 13:18-23 (399)

July 19 Fri Weekday green | Ex 11:10—12:14/Mt 12:1-8 (393)

July 27 Sat Weekday green/white [BVM] Ex 24:3-8/Mt 13:24-30 (400) July 28 SUN SEVENTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME green | Gn 18:20-32/Col 2:12-14/ Lk 11:1-13 (111) Pss I

July 4 Thu Weekday green/white [Independence Day] Gn 22:1b-19/ Mt 9:1-8 (380) or, for Independence Day, any readings from the | Lectionary for Ritual Masses (vol. IV), the Mass For Public Needs, nos. 882-886, | or For Peace and Justice, nos. 887-891.

July 10 Wed Weekday green | Gn 41:55-57; 42:5-7a, 17-24a/Mt 10:1-7 (385)

July 12 Fri Weekday green | Gn 46:1-7, 28-30/Mt 10:16-23 (387)

July 20 Sat Weekday green/red/ white [Saint Apollinaris, Bishop and Martyr; BVM] Ex 12:37-42/Mt 12:14-21 (394)

July 5 Fri Weekday green/white/ white [Saint Anthony Zaccaria, Priest; Saint Elizabeth of Portugal] | Gn 23:1-4, 19; 24:1-8, 62-67/Mt 9:9-13 (381)

July 13 Sat Weekday green/white/ white [Saint Henry; BVM] Gn 49:29-32; 50:15-26a/Mt 10:24-33 (388)

July 21 SUN SIXTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME green | Gn 18:1-10a/Col 1:24-28/Lk 10:38-42 (108) Pss IV

July 29 Mon Saint Martha white | Memorial | Ex 32:15-24, 30-34 (401)/Jn 11:19-27* or Lk 10:38-42* (607)

July 14 SUN FIFTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME green | Dt 30:10-14/Col 1:15-20/Lk 10:25-37 (105) Pss III

July 22 Mon Saint Mary Magdalene white | Memorial | Ex 14:5-18 (395)/Jn 20:1-2, 11-18* (603) Pss Prop

July 30 Tue Weekday green/white [Saint Peter Chrysologus, Bishop and Doctor of the Church] Ex 33:711; 34:5b-9, 28/Mt 13:36-43 (402)

July 15 Mon Saint Bonaventure, Bishop and Doctor of the Church white | Memorial | Ex 1:8-14, 22/Mt

July 23 Tue Weekday green/ white [Saint Bridget, Religious] Ex 14:21—15:1/Mt 12:46-50 (396)

July 31 Wed Saint Ignatius of Loyola, Priest white | Memorial | Ex 34:29-35/Mt 13:44-46 (403)

July 6 Sat Weekday green/red/ white [Saint Maria Goretti, Virgin and Martyr; BVM] Gn 27:1-5, 1529/Mt 9:14-17 (382) July 7 SUN FOURTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME green |

July 11 Thu Saint Benedict, Abbot white | Memorial | Gn 44:18-21, 23b-29; 45:1-5/Mt 10:7-15 (386)




On July 6 from 8:45 a.m.-5 p.m. at Corpus Christi Cathedral St. Joseph’s Hall on 505 N. Upper Broadway. For more information contact the Diocese of Corpus Christi, Family Life Office at (361) 693-6638 or go to:


paid admission. Concessions will sell breakfast, lunch and snacks. For bazaar or vendor information contact Celia at (361) 289-7092 or Jannell at (361) 851-0372 or by Email:

Pre Cana seminar

13 Baile ranchero

On July 13 from 6-11 p.m. Our Lady of Guadalupe from Ss. Cyril and Methodius Church is hosting a baile ranchero at Monsignor Kasper Youth Center 3210 S.P.I.D behind the church. The music will be provided by Los Primos. Tickets are $5 per person and a Polka Contest with 1st, 2nd and 3rd Place winners will be acknowledged. A snack bar will be open from 6-8 p.m. and a brisket sandwich Combo for $5 will be available as well as other snacks. Proceeds from this event will go towards the Ss. Cyril and Methodius Church Building Fund. For more information contact Connie Velasquez, at (361) 960-0856.

‘A Covenant of Love with Mary’ Classes at OLPH On July 8 beginning with Mass at 6:15 p.m., followed by a video and talk at 6:45 p.m. and a light dinner and celebration at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish Hall.

12 & 13



CDA Annual Rummage Sale Catholic Daughters of America will be accepting donations of gently used Items on July 7 -11. Available on July 7 from 1-4 p.m. Available July 8-11 from 9-6 p.m. All contributions are tax-deductible and benefit charities in the diocese. They will hold their Annual Rummage Sale on Friday, July 12 through Saturday, July 13 from 7 a.m.-2 p.m. The sale will be held at St. Philip the Apostle parish, located at 3513 Cimarron Blvd.

Christmas in July On July 13 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday, July 14 from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. St. Theresa Church on 1212 Lantana will be having a Gift and Craft Bazaar in the parish hall. Admission is $2 (12 and under are free). There will be a daily raffle. Free reusable shopping bag with




SOLT 55th anniversary and ordination On July 16 at 10 a.m. the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity will celebrate their 55th Anniversary with Mass and Ordination of six brothers to the Transitional Diaconate at Corpus Christi Cathedral.



Convalidation seminar Seminar will be in Spanish. On July 20 from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles on 3901 Violet Road. Fifty dollars per couple. Must be pre-registered to attend. No walk-ins will be accepted. Registration deadline is five days prior to seminar date.


Eight-day retreat at OLCC On July 26 - Aug. 4 at Our Lady of Corpus Christi Campus their will be a retreat for men and women. For more information call (361) 289-9095, ext. 321.

Rummage sale in Vattmann Hall On July 27 from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. the Women’s Club of Our Lady of Consolation is hosting their 4th Annual Church and Community Rummage Sale at Vattmann Hall (from Kingsville approx. 12 miles South on Hwy 77, then travel five miles East on FM 628). The Women’s Club is accepting clean, unbroken, sellable items the week prior. Will also have community booths for those wanting to sell their wares. It is not too late to request an inside rental space with tables, or space outside without tables. The event is mainly indoors, air-conditioned, and welcomes the public. For more information call Teresa May at (361) 296-4642.

Polka fest On July 27 beginning at 11 a.m. there will be a South Texas Summer Polka Fest sponsored by Czech Heritage Society of South Texas at Moravian Hall on 5601 Kostoryz Rd. For more information call Sam Morris at (361) 215-9163.

To see more calendar events go to:

Social Media Calendar end n a News Contact Us


he Diocese of Corpus Christi is celebrating 30 years of Youth Spectaculars! This year’s

events for Middle School and High School youth will contain special elements from the past as well as dynamic speakers, praise and worship music, games, Adoration, and a closing Mass! Both events will be held at the Richard Borchard Fairgrounds, located at 1213 Terry Shamsie Blvd. in Robstown. More information to come in the next issue of the South Texas Catholic!



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South Texas Catholic - July 2013  

The South Texas Catholic is the official publication of the Diocese of Corpus Christi. Its mission is to carry out the Gospel message to eva...

South Texas Catholic - July 2013  

The South Texas Catholic is the official publication of the Diocese of Corpus Christi. Its mission is to carry out the Gospel message to eva...