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Call to Action From South Texas to Washington

ACTION: Diocese of

Corpus Christi

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops offers the following clarifications regarding the Health and Human Services regulations on mandatory coverage of contraceptives, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs: 1. It does not exempt Catholic charities, schools, universities, or hospitals. HHS does not deem them “religious employers” because they do not “serve primarily persons who share their religious tenets.” HHS denies them religious freedom because their purpose is to serve the common good -a purpose government should encourage. 2. It forces these institutions and others to pay for things they consider immoral. Under the mandate, the government forces religious insurers, religious employers and schools and religious employees and students to write, provide and purchase insurance coverage that violates their beliefs. 3. It forces coverage of sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs as well as contraception. HHS’s mandate also forces employers to sponsor and subsidize coverage of sterilization. And by including all contraceptive drugs, the HHS mandate includes drugs that can induce abortion, such as “Ella,” a close cousin of the abortion pill RU-486. 4. Catholics of all political persuasions are unified in their opposition to the mandate. Catholics who have long supported this administration and its policies have publicly criticized HHS’s decision, including college presidents Father John Jenkins and Arturo Chavez; and Sister Carol Keehan, president and CEO of the Catholic Health Association. 5. Many other religious and secular groups have spoken out against HHS. Many recognize this as an assault on religious liberty, even if they disagree with the underlying moral question. Protestant and, Orthodox Christian and Orthodox Jewish groups -none of which oppose contraception - are against the HHS’s decision. The Washington Post, USA Today, N.Y Daily News and other secular outlets have editorialized against it. 6. The federal mandate is much stricter than existing state mandates. Even without an exemption, religious employers now can avoid contraceptive mandates in 28 states by self-insuring their drug coverage, dropping that coverage, or opting for regulation under a pre-emptive federal law. This mandate closes off these avenues of relief.

Make your voice heard | Contact your representatives President Barack Obama

Mail: 517 Hart Senate Office Bldg. Washington D.C. 20510 Phone: (972) 239-1310 or (202) 224-2934 Website:

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison

Rep. Blake Farenthold

Mail: 284 Russell Senate Office Bldg. Washington, D.C. 20510 Phone: (214) 361-3500 or (202) 224-5922 Website:

27th District: Nueces, Kleberg, Kenedy

Rep. Ron Paul

Rep. Ruben Hinojosa

14th District: Aransas

15th District: Bee, Brooks, Duval, Jim Wells, Live Oak, Refugio, San Patricio

Mail: 2203 Cannon House Office Bldg. Washington, DC 20515 Phone Number: (202) 225-2831 Website:


Sen. John Cornyn

Mail: The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20500 Phone: (202) 225-3484 Website:


Mail: 2110 Rayburn HOB Washington, DC 20515 Phone: (202) 225-7742 Website:

Mail: 2262 Rayburn HOB Washington, DC 20515 Phone: (202) 225-2531 Website:

Contact your U.S. Representative by e-mail, phone, or FAX letter: • Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at: (202) 224-3121, or call your Members’ local offices. • Send an e-mail through NCHLA’s Grassroots Action Center at • Additional contact info can be found on Members’ web sites at: and

MESSAGE: “Please co-sponsor the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act (H.R. 1179, s. 1467) and help enact it into law. The Obama administration’s decision to mandate coverage of sterilization and contraceptives, including drugs that can cause an abortion, makes passage of this measure especially urgent. Please ensure that the rights of conscience of all participants in our nation’s health care system are respected.”

WHEN: Now is the time to build co-sponsors and support. Please act today!

Our Lady of Guadalupe Patroness of the Americas

Pray for Us O God our Creator, from your provident hand we have received our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. You have called us as your people and given us the right and the duty to worship you, the only true God, and your Son, Jesus Christ. Th rough the power and working of your Holy Spirit, you call us to live out our faith in the midst of the world, bringing the light and the saving truth of the Gospel to every corner of society. We ask you to bless us in our vigilance for the gift of religious liberty. Give us the strength of mind and heart to readily defend our freedoms when they are threatened; give us courage in making our voices heard on behalf of the rights of your Church and the freedom of conscience of all people of faith. Grant, we pray, O heavenly Father, a clear and united voice to all your sons and daughters gathered in your Church in this decisive hour in the history of our nation, so that, with every trial withstood and every danger overcome— for the sake of our children, our grandchildren, and all who come after us— this great land will always be “one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.


VOL. 47 NO. 11 Publisher Most Rev. Wm. Michael Mulvey, STL DD



The General Election will be held Nov. 6. A voters’ guide on Catholic issues starts on page 34.

Photo by Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic Catholic yard sign was photoshopped into photo.

Editor Alfredo E. Cárdenas

Wm. Michael Mulvey 28 Bishop celebrated opening Mass for Year

Theological Consultant Father Joseph Lopez JCL

of Faith. Shares peace embrace with Bishop Emeritus Edmond Carmody.

Associate Editor Mary E. Cottingham Administrative Assistant Adel Rivera Correspondents Geraldine McGloin, Liz Riggle, Julissa Hernandez, Adrian Garcia, Timothy Hatch 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.


God’s will be done

Reach for stars on football field


The Catholic Difference

Sounds of Faith


Making sense of bio-ethics


Letter to Women


Praying to saints


A new era begins


Altar servers shine


Bishop Drury faces changes from Second Vatican Council

Catholic Charities gala

Keeping up with the Faith...


Pope names new saints Including two Americans


Our Lady of Victory Parish stewardship committee revitalizing parish

In the public square

What kind of country do you want?

Assisted suicide

On the real war on women

Are Catholics idol worshipers?



A new era begins Msgr. Michael Howell Contributor


ith the death of Bishop Mariano S. Garriga in February 1965 and the final sessions of the Second Vatican Council the following autumn, the Diocese of Corpus Christi faced major changes. On the local level, the boundaries of the diocese changed for the first time since the erection of the vicariate in 1874. Separated from the Diocese of Corpus Christi, the southern four counties of Hidalgo, Starr, Cameron and Willacy were designated the new Diocese of Brownsville with the Auxiliary Bishop Adolph Marx of Corpus Christi named as the first bishop. Bishop Thomas Joseph Drury of the Diocese of San Angelo was named as the new shepherd of Corpus Christi. Bishop Drury was born in County Sligo, Ireland in 1902 and came to America at an early age to make his home with his older sister in St. Louis, Missouri. He completed his high school studies and first two years of college at St. Benedict’s High School and College in Atchison, Kansas where he responded to the call of Bishop Joseph P. Lynch of Dallas who was seeking seminarians for both Dallas and the newly established Diocese of Amarillo. Choosing to study for Amarillo, Bishop Drury completed his priestly formation at Kenrick Seminary in Missouri and was ordained in 1935. His life as a young priest in a new diocese included work both on the parish and diocesan levels, with assignments as editor of the diocesan paper and diocesan director of Catholic Action (Catholic Charities), Boy and Girl Scouts and the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (religious education) as well as work in the Marriage Tribunal. After World War II he served as a military chaplain until invited by his former bishop, now Archbishop Robert Lucey of San Antonio, to serve as moderator of the Spanish-speaking programs and Catholic Action in the archdiocese. At the outbreak of the Korean conflict, he was again called to military service as a chaplain in the Air Force



and after his tour of duty returned to parish work in the Diocese of Amarillo. Among other tasks, he directed the building of the parish church of Christ the King in Lubbock and served as its first pastor in 1961. Christ the King was later designated the cathedral when the Diocese of Lubbock was erected in 1983. His time at Christ the King, however, was cut short by his appointment as bishop of San Angelo. It was there he was serving when he received the call to come to Corpus Christi in 1965 as successor to Bishop Garriga. Msgr. Robert E. Freeman, when he was Vicar General of the Diocese of Corpus Christi noted that the “climate of the church in south Texas when Bishop Drury was installed in 1965 can be compared to the introduction Charles Dickens gave his ‘Tale of Two Cities’.” It was the “best of times” because of the Vatican Council’s call for renewal and increased involvement of the laity in activities of the Church to serve as leaven in the world. However, it was also “the worst of times” because there were no models or structures to implement this new society. This led to great challenges as dioceses and parishes sought to develop such structures. The vision promoted by the Council required training and motivation from both clergy and laity to implement. Bishop Drury responded by initiating a diocesan wide census to better ascertain the demographics of the Catholic community. He also introduced a Diocesan Pastoral Council composed of Catholic lay leaders along with clergy and religious to ascertain needs and workable answers to those needs and established a Presbyteral Council to promote collaboration and seek advice from a larger representative body of the clergy than just his Consultors. During this time, the Church made some radical changes in the liturgy of the Church in the use of the vernacular and renewal of the sacramental rites in light of historical and scriptural studies. The bishop appointed a Director of Liturgy to promote education of both the clergy and the laity as well as oversee any architectural modifications made in the existing churches in light of the reforms. The Diocesan Liturgical Commission also brought in noted speakers to help the parish priests prepare for new demands. Noting the Council’s focus on the importance of the Word of God in the revised rituals of all the

Bishop Thomas Joseph Drury of the Diocese of San Angelo was named the new shepherd of Corpus Christi in 1965 as successor to Bishop Garriga. Archived Photo www w .So South u Tex uth TexasC a ath asC atholi oli l c.c c om



“The climate of the church in south Texas when Bishop Drury was installed in 1965 can be compared to the introduction Charles Dickens gave his ‘Tale of Two Cities’.” ments, conferences featuring speakers like noted scholar Father Raymond Brown were offered. This was true also for the new sacramental rituals. For instance, as the new rite of Anointing of the Sick was promulgated, an associate of Dr. Kubler-Ross was brought in for a conference on dealing with the seriously ill and those near death. It became the practice to hold similar clergy conferences on a regular basis as tools to help the clergy in their ministry to the people of God. The bishop also sought to enrich the spiritual life of clergy and laity alike with retreats. The diocese was blessed in 1973 with the presence of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, recently declared “Venerable” by Pope Benedict XVI. In 1940, he had conducted the first religious service ever telecast. In 1951, he began the TV series “Life is Worth Living” and between 1928 and 1967 had published more than 67 books. He inspired clergy and Archbishop Fulton laity alike in a series of J. Sheen TV series “Life is talks given in the CorWorth Living” pus Christi Cathedral Jan. 15-17, 1973. One of the guests at this ecumenical gathering, Rev. Don Pevey of the First Methodist Church, commented in the local Catholic paper that the Archbishop’s presentations were “impressive” as he spoke of the call of clergy and laity alike to live the Gospel in the modern world. Local Catholic schools had always had the reputation of excellence in producing graduates of high academic and moral standing since the early days of the vicariate, but during Bishop Drury’s period a statewide effort was initiated to accredit all of the Catholic schools in Texas. This was done through the concerted effort of all the bishops of Texas who organized the Texas Catholic Conference to coordinate such joint activities. Within the diocese, new parochial schools were opened, and at one time there were efforts to even establish a Catholic junior college—Christopher College. However, financial demands made this goal unattainable, and after only a few years the school had to close.



During the administration of earlier bishops the use of the media to evangelize and inform had begun with the newspaper Southern Messenger that was initiated in the

projects in Laredo, Corpus Christi and Alice, as well as special ministry to migrant workers. During the first decade of Bishop Drury’s administration the Diocese experienced two major storms, Beulah in September 1967 and Celia in August 1970. Catholic Charities organized volunteers for both to help those affected. Bishop Drury and a team of priests, nuns and lay leaders met nightly by candlelight as they planned the restoration of areas ravaged by Hurricane Celia.

From left, Father Lawrence White, associate editor; Bishop Thomas J. Drury, publisher; and Father Raymond J. Peña, editor, discuss newspaper business in early years of publication. Archived Photo

1890s to serve all of Texas in providing the bishops with a means of reaching all of their flock on a weekly basis. Beginning in 1954, with the approbation of Bishop Garriga, a privately published weekly named the Corpus Christi Parish Post began to serve the Catholics of south Texas with news of local activities. As a young priest, Bishop Drury had served as editor of the Amarillo Catholic paper; and as a bishop in San Angelo he had established a diocesan paper. Not surprisingly he also chose to establish an official weekly newspaper for the Diocese of Corpus Christi, which first appeared on May 6, 1966 as the Texas Gulf Coast Register and later was renamed the Texas Gulf Coast Catholic and by 1980 the South Texas Catholic. He also began the application process that resulted in two radio stations—KLUX in Corpus Christi and KHOY in Laredo. Finally, he directed construction of the first television production studio while also promoting and underwriting a weekly Catholic program on one of the local public networks in Corpus Christi. With years of experience in social services from his time as diocesan director of Catholic Action in Amarillo and San Antonio, Bishop Drury established Catholic Charities in September 1965. From a modest beginning the social services of the diocese grew into full-service centers in Corpus Christi and Laredo. The diocesan office saw to the reception and settling of the early boat people fleeing Vietnam and in those early years addressed such needs as adoptions, counseling, emergency aid, shelter for battered wives and the homeless and immigration. It sponsored social services in housing

In top photo, Sister Celestine Pulido and Sister Anita Jane Anderson stop for a moment to discuss the relief program of the Diocese of Corpus Christi with Msgr. J. Alvarado, the pastor of Our Lady of the Pillar. They are standing in what remains of the parish catechetical school. In the photo below, Bishop Drury is shown with Msgr. Leo J. Coady and John M. Hayes, chairman and secretary, respectively, of the National Catholic Disaster Relief Committee, Washington, D.C. and Sister Agnes Marie, Superior General of the Sisters of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament, after meeting at the Diocesan Disaster Relief Center. Archived Photo NOVEMBER 2012 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


Diocese breaks ground on new

Catholic Student Center Officials from Texas A&M University-Kingsville, the Diocese of Corpus Christi and the Newman Student Housing Fund broke Oct. 3 for the new St. Thomas Aquinas Newman Center and Chapel as well as a new 278-bed housing complex on property adjacent to the university campus. Construction of the Newman Center and 300-seat chapel is being funded by the diocese with proceeds from their Legacy of Faith~Future of Hope Capital & Endowment Campaign in conjunction with a grant from the John G. and Marie Stella Kenedy Memorial Foundation. The Diocese will operate the Newman Center and Chapel. The Newman Student Housing fund, a limited liability company formed to construct student housing for the Catholic Church, is funding construction of, and will operate, the new Catholic housing complex that is set to initially serve 278 students, with plans for future expansion. The housing will be open for use by all students of the university. Dr. Steven Tallant, President of Texas A&M UniversityKingsville, said he was excited to break ground because many of the school’s students have expressed an interest in a spiritual living option. “It is critically important for us to address the total needs of our students, not just their academic needs. This collaborative project brings us one step closer to honoring our commitment to our students,” Tallant said. Completion of the complex is expected in August 2013, in time for the fall semester. Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey hailed the project as a great undertaking saying, “The diocese, university and Newman Housing Fund have worked collaboratively to respond to the growing needs of our community, especially



Adam Koll, Director of Young Adult and Campus Ministry for the Diocese of Corpus Christi (center), is credited with inviting the Newman Housing folks to build Catholic dorms. At left is Randy Hughes, administrative assistant to the president at Texas A&M-Kingsville and Nina Joiner, with the St. Thomas Aquinas student center. Alfredo E.Cardenas, South Texas Catholic

college students and young adults. This unified effort of serving our young people is an expression of our desire to support and form young men and women in faith, so they may serve God and their neighbor now and in the future.” With the completion of this project, Texas A&MKingsville will become one of only two public universities in the country and the first in Texas to include a residential component to their Catholic Newman Center. Matthew Zerrusen with the Newman Student Housing Fund asked students to visit and pray at the construction site over the next year.

Diaconate Ordination Bishop Mulvey will ordain ‘outstanding class’ of deacons wenty-three men have completed five-years of preparation to serve the Church of Corpus Christi.


Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey will ordain 23 men as Permanent Deacons on Nov. 10 at the Corpus Christi Cathedral. The ordination is the culmination of a five-year program that includes a year of inquiry and discernment, a year of aspirancy and three years of candidacy. “These men and their families have worked very hard, and have sacrificed over the last five years. I am Deacon Michael very proud of them,” Mantz Deacon Michael ManDirector, Office tz, Director for the of Permanent Permanent Diaconate, Diaconate said. “These men will be excellent ministers for our local Church.” Deacon Mantz said that Deacon John Joiner and his formation team have done an exceptional job. “Their dedicated work, coupled with the guidance of Msgr. [Louis] Kihneman and Father Emilio Jimenez have combined to form an outstanding class of new deacons,” Deacon Mantz said. A new class of aspirants has already been formed for a tentative ordination sometime in 2016. Anyone interested in the diaconate program can contact Deacon Mantz at

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The men to be ordained as Permanent Deacons, and their home parishes, are as follows: Juan Carlos Ayala .................................. Most Precious Blood Daniel Joseph Boehm ......................Sacred Heart / Rockport Alfredo Castillo ................................................... Holy Family David Gerardo Castillo .......................... Most Precious Blood Julio Dimas.............................................. St. John the Baptist Robert Lee Flores .................................Sacred Heart / Odem Tomas Gallegos........................... Our Lady of Perpetual Help Alberto Galvan III ................................. Ss Cyril & Methodius Jose Alonzo Garza Jr. ................... St. James Mission / Bishop Emede M. Gonzalez .................................... St. Joseph / Alice Ernesto G. Gutierrez .........................St. Elizabeth of Hungary Danny Lee Herrera ...............................St. Martin / Kingsville Jesse Lee Hinojosa ...........................Corpus Christi Cathedral Richard Longoria...........St. Helena of the True Cross of Jesus Jesus Ruben Maldonado ........................ St. Teresa / Premont Arnoldo Marcha Sr. .................... Our Lady of Perpetual Help Manuel Marroquin ..................... Our Lady of Perpetual Help Felix Muniz ........................................... Most Precious Blood Alfonso Ramirez ......................... Our Lady of Perpetual Help Francisco Rodriguez Jr. ...........................St. Paul the Apostle Armando Sanchez ....................... Our Lady of Perpetual Help Daniel Paul Shaunessy ...........................St. Philip the Apostle Bernardo Cuellar Vargas ..................Corpus Christi Cathedral NOVEMBER 2012 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC




Altar servers reach for the stars on Friday nights, stay grounded in their faith every day Alfredo E. Cardenas


South Texas Catholic

he town of Refugio traces its historical origins to venerable Catholic missionaries and pioneers. Today, Catholics continue to play a critical part in the town’s contemporary history, shaped by the venerable American sport of football.

The town takes its name from Nuestra Señora del Refugio, the last Catholic mission established by Spanish Franciscan missionaries in 1793 to take Christ to the Karankawa Indians and bring the Karankawa to Christ. During its first half-century of existence the mission and the town underwent constant upheaval. During this time, it went from being Spanish to Mexican to Texan and finally to American. Through it all, it remained Catholic. After the original mission fell into disrepair and was abandoned, Irish Catholic settlers came into the area and, together with remaining Mexican Catholic families, revived the church as Our Lady of Refuge. Later, in 1886, a second Catholic church was established in the small community and named St. James the Apostle. Today, although other Christian denominations have established churches in Refugio and an ecumenical spirit thrives, its Catholic identity remains strong. But, Refugio’s modern identity is equally tied to its school’s exploits on the football field. Mention Refugio to any sports fan in Texas and immediately the comeback is “great football teams.” Indeed, the Refugio Bobcats have earned accolades far and wide for their success through the years, Our Lady of Refuge altar servers proudly display state championship rings at church altar where they serve every Sunday. From left are Jack Gumm, Brett Davis, Cameron Sternadel, Colton Carol and John Wesley Shipp. Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic



climaxing with their second state championship last year. Bridging the town’s native and modern histories are five altar servers at Our Lady of Refuge, who also are members of the 2011 Bobcat state championship team. They are equally proud of their Catholic Christian faith and the faith they place on their fellow Bobcat team members. “Almost all my teammates are Christians. We may not be of the same religion, but God plays a positive part in our lives and in the game,” 17-year-old senior defensive back Cameron Sternadel said. “I think without our faith in God we would not be the individuals and team we are today. We try to give our best in practice, in our games and in our everyday life.” Sternadel, along with seniors John Wesley Shipp, Jack Gumm, Brett Davis and Colton Carol, all proudly wear their state championship rings while they serve at the al-



tar at Our Lady of Refuge on Sunday. Their pastor, Father Philip Panackal, is equally proud of them. “These boys are loved by all and their presence at the altar makes a difference,” Father Panackal said. “They help the parish in all its activities and their leadership qualities are a great reward for our parish and the community. They are role models.” Shipp, an all-state defensive lineman and altar server Refugio Bobcat captains, all Catholics, meet opposing team leaders at the start of a recent game. Starting at left are Cameron Sternadel (14), Draigon Silvas (2), Jack Gumm (12), Travis Quintanilla (34) and John Wesley Shipp (34). Sternadel, Gumm and Shipp are altar servers at Our Lady of Refuge. Photo by Neil Tucker for the Refugio County Press

since the sixth grade, said he has “Father Phillip’s back no matter what.” He goes to Father Panackal for advise on Sunday, just as he does to his football coach during practice. When all is said and done, however, Shipp points to God for his and his team’s success. “I wake up in the morning and I pray for giving me another day; I go to bed and I pray for giving me another safe day,” Shipp said. “He is really the main coach. Thanking Him and praying for Him for allowing you to do the best of your ability. He is the main One in all of this.” Gumm, who has been an altar server since he was sixyears-old, credits his Catholic faith with helping him and his team’s success. “As Catholics we learn not to judge, to see stuff from other people’s perspective. It keeps teammates together, dedicated to the team,” the strong outside linebacker said. “We put a lot of time into altar serving,” said senior receiver Brett Davis who has been an altar server since he was in the fifth grade. “It is really important in our lives. It really has shaped us in a good, positive way. It has brought us closer in relationship to God as a team and as family.” Carol has been serving since he was in the second grade. The back-up center and long snapper sees similarities in his love of football and his church. “You work hard to get a win, and you have to work hard to keep your faith,” he said. Catholic charity has also been an important aspect of these young men’s approach to football. The Bobcats have often come in for criticism for their lopsided wins on the field. All five altar servers agreed this criticism is undeserved. “We get a lot of criticism but our coach’s job is to put points on the board and keep the other team from putting points on the board. That’s every coach’s job,” Shipp said. He added that the second and third teams practice as hard as the first string, “they don’t want to take a knee.” “Its just a game,” Davis said. “We are just trying to play a game and get better. We don’t even look at the score.” “We all believe in God. We all thank god for getting out of game healthy. We don’t ask him to help us win but just allow us to do our best or to do whatever our plan or His plan is for us. We never ask for us to win because that would be selfish. We always want to do what right with Him; to give our best effort,” Shipp said. While Father Panackal is rightfully proud of these altar servers, he beams with equal pride on the accomplishments of other altar servers, choir members and young people in his parish. Since coming to Our Lady of Refuge in 2005, Father Panackal has seen one of his parishioners named either valedictorian or salutatorian at the local high school almost every year. In 2005, altar server Chase Linscomb was named salutatorian; in 2006, altar servers Kallie Gallagher and Hilary Gillespie were named valedictorian and

salutatorian, respectively; Heather Gillespie was salutatorian the following year in 2007; altar server Madeline Myers was the 2008 valedictorian and Whitney Shipp, a choir soloist, was named salutatorian; and in 2009 altar server Britney Gumm earned salutatorian honors. “The parents, brothers and sisters of our altar servers are very active in the church ministries and parish life,” Father Panackal said. “I appreciate their love for God and eagerness to serve the needs of the parish. I can see the happiness and grace in their lives.”

Altar servers to be recognized The Diocese of Corpus Christi will hold its 2012 Altar Server Recognition Ceremony on Sunday, Nov. 18, at Corpus Christi Cathedral at 3 p.m. The ceremony will begin with a prayer service and then go into the recognition awards. There will be no Mass. Both boys and girls altar servers will be recognized in three categories: Eucharistic Cross Bearer, Outstanding Server for the Local Parish and Recognition for 10 Years of Service. To be eligible for Eucharistic Cross Bearer a server must have served for at least three years and promise to serve throughout his or her high school years. Servers must be at least in the 9th grade, approved by his or her pastor and be a model of dedication to serving. Eucharistic Cross recipients, both girls and boys, wear a red sash and a Eucharistic cross, attached to a red cord. One male and one female server from each parish can be recognized for outstanding service over the past year. These servers will be recognized with a plaque. Any server who has served 10 years is eligible to receive a purple cord presented by the bishop in recognition for their longstanding dedication to serving. All 10-year servers will be able to wear purple cords throughout their senior year. A reception, sponsored by the Catholic Daughters, will be held in St. Joseph’s Hall following the ceremony. For more information regarding the Altar Server Recognition Ceremony, contact DeNeise Thomson at (361) 986-1200 or (361) 244-0929 or visit



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Catholic Charities event presents the sound of faith Mary Cottingham South Texas Catholic


lisabeth von Trapp was the guest musician and speaker at the 2012 “Dinner & Dialogue with Bishop Wm. Michael Mulvey,” held at the Congressman Solomon P. Ortiz International Center in Corpus Christi on Oct. 18 to raise funds for Catholic Charities and the Mother Teresa Shelter.

Von Trapp mesmerized the audience with her soulful voice and Bishop Mulvey spoke of the mystical challenge, “to see the face of Christ in every face you serve.” “Unless you and I are mystics we will not survive as Christians. A mystic in my definition is one who can see beyond…what is tangible, what is understandable. Who can see the other dimension of life. Who can see that there is more to life than just what is in front of me, and can look beyond just the exterior and see into the presence of God, the life of God and the love of God in everything,” Bishop Mulvey said, paraphrasing German Jesuit theologian Karl Rahner. The bishop quoted Pope Benedict XVI from his apostolic letter opening the “Year of Faith,” saying “Faith without charity bears no fruit, while charity without faith would be a sentiment constantly at the mercy of doubt.” Bishop Mulvey said that if we did not have faith we would judge and it would create a barrier between those who give and those who receive. “It’s in that faith that one learns to be joyful, that one receives more than he gives. How many have gone to the hospital room of a friend to console and yet they were consoled. Who go to give and yet they received. “This is the logic of God; this is not human logic. We walk away and say wow I went to help them and they helped me. That’s because faith in action and charity

Elisabeth von Trapp provided entertainment at the biennial fund raising gala for Catholic Charities and Mother Teresa Shelter. Mary Cottingham, South Texas Catholic

coming faith helps both of us grow,” Bishop Mulvey said. The bishop said that the work of the Mother Teresa Shelter and Catholic Charities demonstrates the Holy Father’s observation that we can recognize the faith of the risen Lord in those who ask for our love. After his talk Bishop Mulvey introduced von Trapp, NOVEMBER 2012 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


“Unless you and I are mystics we will not survive as Christians. A one who can see beyond…what is tangible, what is understandable. Who can see the other dimension of life. Who can see that there is more to life than just what is in front of me, and can look beyond just the exterior and see into the presence of God, the life of God and the love of God in everything,” the granddaughter of the Maria and Baron von Trapp portrayed in the 1965 blockbuster musical film The Sound of Music. Elizabeth von Trapp has sung professionally since childhood. Now she honors her deceased father Werner von Trapp who was portrayed as Kurt in the movie. She spoke of the story of the famous von Trapp family that was based on the musical. It was when they came to America though, that miracles began to occur. They were penniless, homeless and spoke no English. She said that it was Catholic Charities of America who first offered her relatives a helping hand. Earlier that day, von Trapp visited the Mother Teresa Shelter and told the recipients and staff that people may get

weary in their good works. “Maybe one song or something I say will encourage them to go on. I am encouraged to do my work by being with you,” she said. “’Dinner and Dialogue’ raises money for operational expenses throughout a period of two years. Donations given throughout the year actually go to the clients,” Executive Director of Catholic Charities Linda McKamie said. Bishop Mulvey thanked all the employees, volunteers and benefactors, “because you really are the incarnation of Christ’s love of humanity.” “Mother Teresa Shelter, Catholic Charities is a place that gives aid to those who are in most need. It is a place where the mystical encounter of Christ in us and Christ in others happens,” Bishop Mulvey said.

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A crowd packs St. Peter’s Square as Pope Benedict XVI celebrates the canonization Mass for seven new saints at the Vatican Oct. 21. Among those canonized were two North Americans -- St. Kateri Tekakwitha, an American Indian born in upstate New York who died in Canada in 1680, and St. Marianne Cope, who worked with leprosy patients on the Hawaiian island of Molokai. Paul Haring, Catholic News Service

Pope proclaims seven new saints, including Americans St. Kateri and St. Marianne Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service


ATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Proclaiming seven new saints -- including St. Kateri Tekakwitha and St. Marianne Cope from North America -- Pope Benedict XVI said they are examples to the world of total dedication to Christ and tireless service to others.



In a revised canonization rite Oct. 21, the pope prayed for guidance that the church would not “err in a matter of such importance” as he used his authority to state that the seven are with God in heaven and can intercede for people on earth. An estimated 80,000 pilgrims from the United States, Canada, the Philippines, Italy, Spain, Germany and Madagascar filled St. Peter’s Square for the canonization of the holy women and men who ministered among their people. The pilgrims applauded the proclamation of the new saints, who included: Kateri, an American Indian who was born in the United States and died in Canada in 1680; Mother Marianne, a Sister of St. Joseph who traveled from Syracuse, N.Y., to Hawaii to care for people with Hansen’s disease and died in Molokai in 1918; and Pedro Calungsod, a teenaged Philippine catechist who was martyred in Guam in 1672. The other new saints are: French Jesuit Father Jacques Berthieu, martyred in Madagascar in 1896; Italian Father Giovanni Battista Piamarta, founder of religious orders, who died in 1913; Sister Carmen Salles Barangueras, founder of a Spanish religious order, who died in 1911; and Anna Schaffer, a lay German woman, who died in 1925. In his homily at Mass following the canon- A banner showing St. Marianne ization, Pope Benedict Cope hangs from the facade of prayed that the example of the new saints would St. Peter’s Basilica. St. Marianne “speak today to the worked with leprosy patients on whole church” and that the Hawaiian island of Molokai. their intercession would Paul Haring, Catholic News Service strengthen the church in its mission to proclaim the Gospel to the world. The pope also spoke about each new saint



individually, giving a short biographical outline and highlighting a special characteristic of each for Catholics today. Pope Benedict called St. Kateri the “protectress of Canada and the first Native American saint,” and he entrusted to her “the renewal of the faith in the First Nations and in all of North America.” The daughter of a Mohawk father and Algonquin Christian mother, St. Kateri was “faithful to the traditions of her A banner showing St. Kateri people,” but also faithful Tekakwitha hangs from the to the Christianity she facade of St. Peter’s Basilica. St. embraced at age 20. “May Kateri was an American Indian her example help us to born in upstate New York who live where we are, loving died in Canada in 1680. Jesus without denying Paul Haring, Catholic News Service who we are,” the pope said. Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Philadelphia, who is of American Indian descent, told Catholic News Service, “I think many young people today are embarrassed about embracing the Catholic faith because they live in a secular culture that’s hostile toward religious experience.” St. Kateri also “grew up in a place where there was great hostility toward Christianity,” Archbishop Chaput said, but she resisted all efforts to turn her away from her faith, “so in some ways she would be a model of fidelity in the face of persecution on religious freedom grounds.” Archbishop Gerald Cyprien Lacroix of Quebec told CNS that the canonization of the first aboriginal of North America is “huge for us.” St. Kateri, he said, is an excellent model for young people of “living a simple life, faithful to the Lord in the midst of hostility.” St. Kateri’s life and canonization show that “saints don’t have to do extraordinary things, they just have to love,” Archbishop Lacroix

said. Francine Merasty, 32, a Cree who lives in Pelican Narrows, Sask., said, “Kateri inspires me because she’s an aboriginal woman. According to sociologists, aboriginal women are at the lowest (social) strata, and for the church to raise up to the communion of saints an aboriginal woman is so awesome and wonderful.” Jake Finkbonner, the 12-year-old boy from Washington state whose healing was accepted as the miracle needed for St. Kateri’s canonization, received Communion from the pope during the Mass. Jake’s parents and two little sisters did as well. Speaking about St. Marianne of Molokai in his homily, Pope Benedict said that a time when very little could be done to treat people with Hansen’s disease, commonly called leprosy, “Marianne Cope showed the highest love, courage and enthusiasm.” “She is a shining example of the tradition of Catholic nursing sisters and of the spirit of her beloved St. Francis,” the pope said. Leading a group of Hawaiian pilgrims, including nine patient-residents from Kalaupapa, where St. Marianne ministered, Honolulu Bishop Larry Silva said St. Marianne is “an inspiration for those who care for those most in need, which is what all Christians are called to do. Now, with universal veneration, she can inspire people around the world.” With thousands of Philippine pilgrims in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Benedict praised St. Pedro, a catechist who accompanied Jesuit priests to the Mariana Islands in 1668. Despite hostility from some of the natives, he “displayed deep faith and charity and continued to catechize his many converts, giving witness to Christ by a life of purity and dedication to the Gospel.” The pope prayed that “the example and courageous witness” of St. Pedro would “inspire the dear people of the Philippines to announce the kingdom bravely and to win souls for God.” Pope Benedict also cited St. Anna Schaffer as a model for a very modern concern. St. Anna was working as a maid to earn the money for the dowry needed to enter a convent when an accident occurred and she “received incurable burns” which kept her bedridden the rest of her life, the pope said. In time, she came to see her pain and suffering as a way to unite herself with Christ through prayer, he said. “May her apostolate of prayer and suffering, of sacrifice and expiation, be a shining example for believers in her homeland, and may her intercession strengthen the Christian hospice movement in its beneficial activity,” the pope said. (Francis X. Rocca contributed to this story.)

Pope sends cardinals to Syria to promote peace, show solidarity Francis X. Rocca Catholic News Service


ATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A papal delegation of bishops, including Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, will travel to the capital of war-torn Syria in late October to show solidarity with victims and encourage peace negotiations. Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, Vatican secretary of state, made the announcement Oct. 16 at the evening session of the world Synod of Bishops. “In the certainty that the only possible solution to the crisis is a political solution, and bearing in mind the immense suffering of the population, the fate of displaced persons, and the future of that nation, it has been suggested that our synodal assembly express its solidarity,” Cardinal Bertone said. Syria’s civil war has left thousands dead and has displaced hundreds of thousands of refugees since March 2011. The cardinal said that Pope Benedict XVI had instructed a delegation of six bishops and a priest to express, on behalf of the pope and the synod “our fraternal solidarity with the entire population”; “our spiritual closeness to our Christian brothers and sisters”; and “our encouragement to all those involved in seeking an agreement that respects the rights and duties of all, with particular attention to the demands of humanitarian law.” Cardinal Bertone gave no date for the trip, but said it would take place the following week, after completion of the “necessary formalities” with the papal nuncio and the “local authorities” in Damascus. He also mentioned that the delegation would bring a “personal offering from the synod fathers as well as from the Holy See,” which the Vatican press office later confirmed would take the form of a financial contribution. In addition to Cardinal Dolan, the members of the delNOVEMBER 2012 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


An image of Mary is seen near a hole in a church after shelling in the old city of Homs, Syria, Sept. 30. CNS photo/Shaam News Network handout via Reuters

egation include Congolese Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya of Kinshasa; Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue; Bishop Fabio Suescun Mutis, the military ordinary of Colombia; Bishop Joseph Nguyen Nang of Phat Diem, Vietnam; Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, Vatican secretary for relations with states; and Msgr. Alberto Ortega, an official of the Vatican Secretariat of State. Cardinal Dolan, chairman of the board of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association, said he was “honored” that the pope had chosen to send him to Syria. “There can be no question but that the violence in this

strife-torn country is causing immense suffering,” Cardinal Dolan said, “and it is the hope of the bishops of the synod that this display of pastoral concern on the part of Pope Benedict might help draw the world’s attention even more closely to this unspeakable tragedy.” Another synod member, Bishop Gerald F. Kicanas of Tucson, Ariz., said that one purpose of the visit will be “to look, to listen, to try to see and understand better what is going on and how the church can be helpful.” “But it’s also a way of saying to people that we are concerned, that we are here in solidarity with you,” said Bishop Kicanas, chairman of the board of Catholic Relief Services.

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The Melchizedek Project is a discernment group for high school seniors and above who love Jesus Christ and His Church, and who are willing to talk to other like-minded men about their future. The group meetings are NOT meant to convince you that priesthood is your vocation. You could very well be called to marriage or another vocation. But as a Catholic man – even if you’re currently dating – at some point you have to ask yourself whether or not God is calling you to be a priest. It takes prayer and study to discover your TRUE vocation. All meetings will be led by Fr. Peter Stanley, Associate Vocation Director and will be private in nature. Your presence and participation in this authentic discernment beginning will be greatly appreciated. If you have any questions or would like to aĴend, please do not hesitate to contact Amy Palomo at (361) 882-6191 or

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Father Luke greets parishioners after Sunday Mass at Our Lady of Victory in Beeville. Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic

Stewardship committee energizes Our Lady of Victory Alfredo E. Cardenas South Texas Catholic


fter more than 100 years of existence, Our Lady of Victory Parish in Beeville is undergoing a noticeable renewal. Father Lukose Thirunelliparambil, who has been pastor at the church for the past eight years, says all the markers–from Mass attendance to Sunday collections–are up.



The upbeat outlook is due in large part to the help provided by the diocesan Office of Parish Stewardship & Development, which assisted the parish to implement an active stewardship program. “If I ask a person to do something for the church they are honored. They feel part of the church,” Father Luke, as his flock knows him, said. After a hundred years of existence any organization can become stagnant. Our Lady of Victory may have fallen into this category on occasion during its century of existence. How the parish chose Our Lady of Victory as its patron is not recorded in the archives of the diocese. It may well have been that the bishop’s order creating it as a mission of

Veronica Alaniz advised Father Luke to “ask” people and they would respond. She heads the parish’s Stewardship committee that is undertaking various projects to get people involved. Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic

St. Joseph in Beeville may have been issued on Our Lady of Victory’s Feast Day on Oct. 7, 1908, for seven weeks later Bishop Peter Verdaguer made his way from his home in Laredo to Beeville on Dec. 1, 1908 to dedicate the new church. Father Juan Coma founded the church “for the Spanish speaking people of Beeville.” The mission grew quickly and by 1924 it was made a full-fledged parish and was placed under the charge of the Franciscan Friars. Up to that time Passionist priests had overseen it. Father Toribio Christman, OFM was the first resident pastor. In September 1924, a school was opened at Our Lady of Victory under the care of the Sisters of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament. In 1930, Missionaries of the Holy Family were assigned the care of Our Lady of Victory, with Father Anthony Elsing, MSF as the first pastor. To relieve the rapid growth, the diocese erected St. James as a mission of Our Lady of Victory in 1947. Times have changed. The parish no longer operates a school. The sisters are gone, the Missionaries of Holy Family are no longer at the parish and St. James is now a parish all its own. New times call for new measures. Father Luke, who came to Our Lady of Victory in 2004, can attest to the ongoing transformation. After the stewardship committee was formed a year ago

people responded with great vigor. Collections went up 25 percent, daily Mass attendance is up, participation in the Lenten missions exceeded previous years, the church was packed for Stations of the Cross during Lent and those making the Sacrament of Penance increased. In short, the parish’s spirituality has risen sharply. All it took was somebody to ask the people to participate. That was the suggestion that Veronica Alaniz gave to Father Luke when the stewardship committee first started. Father Luke had noticed that Alaniz, her husband and children were faithful participants at Mass and other parish events, so he asked her to chair the new stewardship committee. “We meet to incorporate new ideas in our church to bring more people to get involved that are not involved,” Alaniz said. The committee “got a lot of positive comments” on these new ideas. Among the new initiatives are letters from the pastor. Letters bearing Father Luke’s signature are regularly sent to parishioners to keep them up to date on parish activities and to solicit their help with the various events. Stewardship cards were handed out at all Masses asking parishioners to commit to spiritual activities, such as praying daily, attending daily Mass more often, going to confession at least every two weeks, attending Stations of the Cross, etc. In October, the parish hosted a marriage retreat attended by some 20 couples. “It was awesome,” Father Luke said. “It brought them closer to each other and to God. They understood better the meaning of the sacrament.” Another project the committee undertook was distributing a flyer listing all the parish ministries, what they did and how people could participate. With 361 families enrolled, the response has been encouraging. Older ministries such as the Holy Name Society and the St. Anne’s Society, as well as newer groups such as the Knights of Columbus, Life in the Spirit and the CYO, all benefited from this initiative. Father Luke is particularly proud of his altar servers and NOVEMBER 2012 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


Stewardship committee members include, from left, Deacon Rogelio Rosenbaum, Laly Cardenas, Nora Salazar, Veronica Alaniz, Laly Arteaga, Annamarie Silvas, Maria Garcia, Yolanda Chamberlain and Father Luke. Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic

the youth group, which is very active under the leadership of youth ministers, the husband and wife team of Rene and Ana Guerrero. The parish has 40 altar servers and more are signing up. The youth group is very active with their own projects and with lending a helping hand to other parish events, such as the couples’ retreat and the parish Halloween night. They participate in community service projects as well. In December, the CYO will participate in a family weekend retreat in Corpus Christi and will make a one-day pilgrimage to the Minor Basilica at San Juan. Alaniz and her committee members, which include Laly

Arteaga, Laly Cardenas, Yolanda Chamberlain, Maria Garcia, Nora Salazar and Annamarie Silvas, are continuing to meet and planning for future events. People like the new activities, Alaniz said, and the committee will fine-tune them to make them better for next year. Father Luke was also encouraged with the parish’s response to the Legacy of Faith~Future of Hope capitol campaign which exceeded its goal. Proceeds from the campaign will be used to repair church buildings. “I’m glad that I have a great group to help,” Father Luke said. “Every parish in the diocese, no matter how big or small it should have this stewardship committee.”

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“Developing Hearts and Minds”



Diocese enters

YEAR OF FAITH Alfredo E. Cardenas South Texas Catholic


ishop Wm. Michael Mulvey issued a clarion call to the faithful to renew and reinvigorate their faith in Jesus Christ during the Year of Faith, which began Oct. 11. The bishop opened the Year of Faith in the Diocese of Corpus Christi at a special Mass at the Corpus Christi Cathedral on Oct. 17.

Laity from throughout the diocese was in attendance as were members of various religious congregations. A host of priests, including Bishop Emeritus Edmond Carmody and the diocesan Curia, concelebrated the Mass, which was broadcast on KLUX 89.5 HD2. Bishop Mulvey evoked the Second Vatican Council’s call to all Catholics to “relook at ourselves, to take us back to the beginning.” “The beginning of our faith is our baptism. It is a faith that we profess through our parents, our godparents, and we will again profess that faith tonight at the beginning of this Year of Faith,” Bishop Mulvey said. In calling for a Year of Faith, the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, invited Catholics to have a “fresh encounter with the person of Jesus Christ.” “And it is my belief as a pastor of the Church, this is what people are looking for, they are looking for that person of Jesus Christ,” Bishop Mulvey said. Once the faithful reengage and remake an acquaintance with Jesus, then they will be able to more easily see and come to understand the teachings, the doctrines and the dogma of the Church. The call to this renewal of faith is part and parcel of the New Evangelization, which asks us to refocus on ourselves,



our family, our neighbors and our parish, and to recapture all that we have lost, forgotten and laid aside about our Catholic faith. It demands that we dust off all the clutter we have allowed into our lives from today’s materialistic world and embrace the truth that is the Word of God that He shared with us in the person of Jesus Christ. “Our lives today confuse,” Bishop Mulvey said. “People today are confused because there are so many options, there are so many things that cloud our minds, that cloud our hearts, that pull at us in our desires. And we as Christians, we as Catholics, we fall pray to these things; what we call today relativism. And we lose focus because we are not focused on the one reality of life.” The bishop said there is a great need for people to refocus their lives. He encouraged the faithful to “live for one thing not 50, live for one good not 100, live for one person not many.” “There are things in life that we will never understand, we will never figure out, we will never solve, we will never put in a test tube, we will never put under a microscope. There are things in life unseen. There are realities in front of us that we do not perceive with our eyes or with our ears and yet we are called to believe in them. And so faith takes us beyond sight and this is where faith and reason either combat each other, fight against each other or where faith completes human reason,” the bishop said. In these circumstances, Bishop Mulvey said, the martyrs and saints provide us the example, “because they walk by faith not by sight.” “They walk out of love, they encounter God in all things. They approach life as a gift. They see what others do not see.” The bishop encouraged the faithful that as they listen Bishop Mulvey celebrated Mass at the Cathedral to open the Year of Faith. The bishop urged the faithful to renew seek a “fresh encounter with the person of Jesus Christ.” Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic



and read the Gospel during the Year of Faith to “hear” the word “faith” constantly springing out and that they “take time” to understand what is being said. “So as we look at our situations, as we look at our life, as we observe those things that happen around us, let us not be those in the boat who doubted and Jesus would have to say to us, ‘Oh, you had little faith. Did you not believe in my love? You doubted’,” Bishop Mulvey said. “Let him say of us this year ‘I see your faith. I see that you are willing to go where you do not understand. You are willing to abandon yourself to me and to my providence, to my will.’ And God does have a will for each one of our lives. And if we are strong in faith we will allow God’s plan for us to be unfolded.” Echoing the pope’s wishes, Bishop Mulvey asked that everyone “to study more to pray more, to serve more.” “The more we pray and the more we are listening to the word of God, studying the word of God, studying the catechism, the more our faith will blossom,” he said. There will be many opportunities for prayer and study and service in the Diocese of Corpus Christi during the Year of Faith. On Dec. 1, the diocese will host a “Vatican II Symposium” at St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles Parish located at 3901 Violet Road in Corpus Christi. The event will begin at 10 a.m., with Bishop Mulvey delivering the opening address, and conclude at 2 p.m., with lunch being provided. Dr. Geri Telepak will speak on “Lumen Gentium, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church.” Dr. Telepak has a Master of Arts from St. Mary’s University; a Doctor of Ministry from the Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary; and currently serves as director of the Department of Religious

Education and Formation for the Diocese of Austin. Father Ken Hannon, OMI will discuss “Sacrosanctum Concilium, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy.” Father Hannon is a professor at Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio. For more information on the symposium, call (361) 8826191, ext. 631 by Nov. 14. A second symposium will be held at the Cathedral on March 9. Father Donald Nesti from St. Thomas University in Houston will speak on “Gaudium et Spes, Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World” and Father Thomas Norris on “Dei Verbum, Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation.” The diocese has created a Web page especially for the Year of Faith. The page is a robust site with daily updates. It can be found at or by using your smart phone to capture the QR code from the icon on this page. One item that will be updated frequently is the “Bishop’s Reflections” during the Year of Faith, which are video and audio reflections by Bishop Mulvey on Gospel readings. The bishop hopes to provide reflections several times a week. Pope Benedict has suggested that by reading a few passages of the Catechism of the Catholic Church daily, the faithful can read the entire catechism by the end of the Year of Faith. The folks at Flocknotes have developed an app that allows people to subscribe to their service for free and receive a daily email with passages from the Catechism, which will fulfill the Holy Father’s suggestion. The app is available on the diocese’s Year of Faith page. The pope has also recommended to the faithful to read the conciliar documents issued by the Second Vatican Council. Those documents are also on the diocese’s Web site.

Members of the diocesan Curia, from left, Vicar for Retired Priests Msgr. Thomas P. Mc Gettrick, Vicar General Msgr. Louis Kihneman, III and Vicar for Priests Father Emilio Jimenez, concelebrated the Mass with Bishop Mulvey, along with other members of the clergy. Alfredo E. Cardenas, South Texas Catholic



Su acción se necesita Desde el sur de Texas a Washington

ACCIÓN: Diocese of Póngase en contacto con su rep-

Corpus Christi

La Conferencia Estadounidense de Obispos Católicos ofrece las siguientes aclaraciones con respecto a la reglamentación de la oficina federal de Salud y Servicios Humanos sobre la cobertura obligatoria de los anticonceptivos, la esterilización y las drogas que inducen el aborto: 1. La regla no perdona a organizaciones católicas, como agencias de servicios sociales, escuelas, universidades o hospitales. HHS no los considera como “empleadores religiosos” porque no “sirven principalmente a las personas que comparten sus principios religiosos.” HHS les niega la libertad religiosa, ya que su propósito es servir al bien común, un propósito que el gobierno debe apoyar. 2. Le regla obliga a estas instituciones y otras empresas que paguen por cosas que consideran inmoral. Bajo su mandato, el gobierno obliga a las aseguradoras religiosas, empleadores religiosos y las escuelas religiosas y empleados y estudiantes a destacar, facilitar y adquirir una cobertura de seguros que viola sus creencias. 3. La regla obliga la cobertura de la esterilización y las drogas para inducir el aborto, así como la anticoncepción. El mandato del HHS también obliga a los empleadores a patrocinar y subsidiar la cobertura de la esterilización. Y mediante la inclusión de todos los medicamentos anticonceptivos, el mandato HHS incluye medicamentos que pueden inducir el aborto, por ejemplo, “Ella”, que tiene carácter de la píldora del aborto RU-486. 4. Los católicos de todas las tendencias políticas están unidos en su oposición al mandato. Católicos que han apoyado durante mucho tiempo este gobierno y sus políticas han criticado públicamente la decisión del HHS, incluyendo presidentes de universidades como el Padre John Jenkins y Arturo Chávez, y la Hermana Carol Keehan, presidente y CEO de la Catholic Health Association.

resentante de EE.UU. por e-mail, teléfono, carta o fax: • Llame al Capitolio de los EE.UU. centralita: (202) 224-3121, o llame a la oficina local de sus deputados federales. • Envien un correo electrónico a través de NCHLA Centro de Acción Popular en • Información de contacto adicional se puede encontrar en los sitios web de los Miembros en: y MENSAJE: “Por favor de co-patrocinar la ley sobre el respeto de los derechos (Ley de Conciencia HR 1179, s. 1467) y ayudar a promulgar esta ley. La decisión de la administración Obama para exigir la cobertura de la esterilización y los anticonceptivos, incluidos los medicamentos que pueden provocar un aborto, hace la aprobación de esta medida especialmente urgente. Asegure que los derechos de la conciencia de todos los participantes en nuestro sistema de salud del país se respetan”. CUÁNDO: Ahora es el momento de construir copatrocinadores y de apoyo. Por favor, actúe hoy mismo!

5. Muchos otros grupos religiosos y seculares han pronunciado en contra de HHS. Muchos reconocen esto como un asalto a la libertad religiosa, incluso si no están de acuerdo con la cuestión moral rendida. Protestantes y ortodoxos judíos y cristianos, ninguno Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de los cuales se opone a la anticoncepción – se oponen a la decisión del HHS. Los Patrona de las Américas periódicos Washington Post, USA Today, New York Daily News y otros medios secuRuega por nosotros lares han publicado editoriales en contra. 6. El mandato federal es mucho más estricto que los mandatos estatales en efectivo. Incluso sin una concesión, los empleadores religiosos ahora pueden evitar los mandatos de anticonceptivos en 28 estados por medio de auto-asegurar su cobertura de medicamentos, renunciando esa cobertura, o optar por reglamentos en virtud de una ley federal preventiva. Este mandato cierra estas pasos de remedio.

Exprese su opinión | Póngase en contacto con representantes President Barack Obama

Sen. John Cornyn

Mail: The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20500 Phone: (202) 225-3484 Website:

Mail: 517 Hart Senate Office Bldg. Washington D.C. 20510 Phone: (972) 239-1310 or (202) 224-2934 Website:

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison

Rep. Blake Farenthold

Mail: 284 Russell Senate Office Bldg. Washington, D.C. 20510 Phone: (214) 361-3500 or (202) 224-5922 Website:

27th District: Nueces, Kleberg, Kenedy

Rep. Ron Paul

Rep. Ruben Hinojosa

14th District: Aransas

15th District: Bee, Brooks, Duval, Jim Wells, Live Oak, Refugio, San Patricio

Mail: 2203 Cannon House Office Bldg. Washington, DC 20515 Phone Number: (202) 225-2831 Website:

Mail: 2110 Rayburn HOB Washington, DC 20515 Phone: (202) 225-7742 Website:

Mail: 2262 Rayburn HOB Washington, DC 20515 Phone: (202) 225-2531 Website:

O Señor, Creador nuestro. De tu mano bondadosa hemos recibido el derecho a la vida, a la libertad y a la búsqueda de la felicidad. Nos has hecho tu pueblo y nos has dado el derecho y el deber de venerarte a ti, único Dios verdadero, y a tu Hijo, Jesucristo. Por el poder y la obra del Espíritu Santo, nos llamas a vivir nuestra fe en el mundo llevando la luz y la palabra salvadora del Evangelio a todos los confi nes de la sociedad. Te pedimos nos bendigas mientras cuidamos del don de la libertad religiosa. Danos fortaleza de mente y corazón para estar siempre dispuestos a defender nuestras libertades cuando son amenazadas. Danos valentía para que se escuchen nuestras voces en defensa de los derechos de tu lglesia, y de la libertad de conciencia de todas las gentes de fe. Te pedimos, Oh Padre celestial, que en esta hora decisiva de la historia de nuestra nación, y reunidos en tu Iglesia, des a todos tus hijos e hijas una voz clara y unida para que con cada prueba que encaremos, y cada peligro que superemos, —por el bien de nuestros hijos, de nuestros nietos, y de todos los que vengan después de nosotros— este gran país sea siempre “una nación, bajo Dios, indivisible, con libertad y justicia para todos”. Te lo pedimos por Jesucristo, Nuestro Señor. Amén.




Dejen que sus “conocimiento de causa” sea su guía de conciencia

Escuchen, aprendan y lo más importante recen cuando consideran los candidatos Reverendísimo Wm. Michael Mulvey Obispo de Corpus Christi


is queridos hermanos y hermanas, estamos en los últimos días antes de las elecciones presidenciales. Tal vez ustedes están de acuerdo en que esta ha sido una campaña muy difícil. Más y más problemas tocante a la santidad de la vida humana están siendo empujados a la arena política y, como resultado nuestras creencias morales católicas están siendo corrompidas y mal interpretadas. Como su obispo, quiero tomar un momento para clarificar la enseñanza católica sobre la vida y las cuestiones morales ahora que se están debatidos en la esfera pública. El primero y más importante es la cuestión de la vida en el vientre materno. Como católicos creemos y defen-


demos que la vida comienza en la concepción. La vida es un don de Dios, la vida es del Creador, por lo tanto, nadie tiene el derecho, ni siquiera la propia madre, para extinguir el don de la vida de Dios. Creemos que toda vida humana tiene un valor intrínseco y debe ser protegida desde el momento de la concepción hasta la muerte natural. Los debates también incluyen la definición del matrimonio. El matrimonio es la unión de un hombre y una mujer. Por naturaleza, el hombre y la mujer son llamados a una alianza permanente de amor que refleja la comunión que existe en Dios. Como católicos, creemos y defendemos la definición del matrimonio, la unión de un hombre y una mujer. La libertad religiosa esta en peligro en varios frentes. Los mandatos del HHS incluidos en la ley nueva tocante la salud presentan una nueva intrusión en nuestros derechos de practicar nuestra fe católica. Ningún gobierno en cualquier parte del mundo debería imponer mandatos que crean obstáculos para los que quieren practicar su fe libremente. Desde 1919, la Iglesia Católica ha defendido el derecho de todos nuestros ciudadanos sobre el derecho de recibir cuidados de salud accesibles, y seguimos haciéndolo, pero no a costa de la disminución de la libertad de religión. Muchos de nuestros hermanos y hermanas están sufriendo de la economía. Cada lado presenta dife-


Reverendísimo Wm. Michael Mulvey Obispo de Corpus Christi Bishop of Corpus Christi

rentes enfoques. Si uno adopta un lado o el otro es un asunto de conciencia también. En preparación a votar este año, por favor tome tiempo para estar bien informado y teniendo en cuenta también la situación de los pobres y los que están sin trabajo. Tenga la seguridad de que voy a estar orando por cada uno de ustedes al escuchar los debates y considerar los temas en cuestión. Pido que todos votamos con una conciencia informada y no dejar que emociones formen nuestra opinión. Como ciudadanos católicos de este bendito país, vamos a abrir nuestras mentes a la voluntad de nuestro Creador y votar a promover la vida, para mantener la justicia entre todas las personas y buscar el bien de todo ser humano, incluso a la persona humana en el vientre de su madre. Que Dios los bendiga y guarde a nuestra América libre, bella y justa.

Help Us Prevent Financial Abuse The Diocese of Corpus Christi at the recommendation of the Diocesan Financial Council and Presbyteral Council have furthered their commitment to good stewardship and ¿nancial accountability on behalf of generous donors by instituting a ¿nancial abuse hotline. The Diocese of Corpus Christi has selected an independent third party, The Network, to provide you with a new way to anonymously and con¿dently report ¿nancial abuse and fraud. Employees, parishioners, volunteers, vendors and other interested parties will be encouraged to report concerns they have regarding ¿nancial misconduct within the Diocese of Corpus Christi. All inquiries will be treated promptly and discreetly. Callers will have the right to remain anonymous. Call 1-877-571-9748

Ayudenos a Prevenir el Abuso Financiero La Diocesis de Corpus Christi por medio de la recomendacion del Concilio Diocesano de Finanzas y el Concilio Presbiteral han llevado su dedicacion mas alla para la buena administracion y responsabilidad ¿nanciera en nombre de donantes generosos al instituir un “hotline” para reportar el abuso ¿nanciero. La Diocesis de Corpus Christi ha seleccionado un tercer partido independiente, La Red, para proporcionarle a usted con una manera para reportar anonima 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 paca etica ¿nanciera dentro de la Diocese de Corpus Christi. Todas las investigaciones seran trtadas inmediatamente y discretamente. Personas que llamen tienen el derecho de mantenerse anonimas.

Llamada 1-877-571-9748

Christmas Giving “If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.” – Mother Teresa

Christmas shop and help the homeless at the same time! Make a donation to the Mother Teresa Shelter in honor of loved ones and we will send them a Beautiful Christmas Card. Your gift of $10 or more per Christmas card will help provide day shelter for the homeless in Corpus Christi, Texas. A Christmas card acknowledging your gift (without speciÀc amounts listed) will be mailed to each of your honorees. A beautiful Christmas tree ornament will also be included for gifts of $25 or more per card.

YES! I would like to support the Mother Teresa Shelter at Christmas. RPlease accept my donation of $ ___________________________ and NO cards are necessary.

RI am enclosing $ ____________ for___________cards as follows: RIn Memory of

RIn Honor of

_______________________________________________________ Please send an acknowledgement of this gift to: _______________________________________________________ Name Address _______________________________________________________ City/State/Zip Please use copies of this form for additional names _______________________________________________________ Your Name _______________________________________________________ Phone/email _______________________________________________________ Address City/State/Zip Enclosed: RCheck (payable to Mother Teresa Shelter) RVISA/MC RAMEX _______________________________________________________ Card Holder’s Name Card Holder’s Signature _______________________________________________________ Card # Exp. Date Mail form and payment to: Catholic Charities of Corpus Christi, Inc. 1322 Comanche Street Corpus Christi, TX 78401 Phone: (361) 442-2224 Fax: (361) 442-2607 Email:



The Catholic “swing” vote The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life


atholics are often identified as a major “swing” voting group in American politics.1 In recent presidential elections Catholics have made up roughly a quarter of the electorate, and, indeed, they have been closely divided between the two parties.

But a new analysis by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life shows that most subgroups of American Catholics have reliably voted either Republican or Democratic. White Catholics who identify themselves as politically conservative have consistently voted for Republican candidates in recent elections. And white Catholics who identify themselves as political liberals have consistently voted for Democrats, as have Hispanic Catholics and other Catholic minorities. The only group of Catholics that has been divided in recent elections is white Catholics who identify as moderates; they were closely divided in both 2000 and 2004 before swinging strongly in the Democratic direction in 2008. So far in 2012, there has been little drop-off in support for the Democrats among this group. In Pew Research Center polling conducted so far this year, about half of

white Catholic moderates identify themselves as Democrats or say they lean toward the Democratic Party (51%), while 39% prefer the GOP. White Catholic moderates constituted the single largest subgroup of Catholic voters in the 2008 presidential election, accounting for one-third of Catholic voters (32%). White Catholic conservatives accounted for 25% of Catholic voters in 2008. Hispanic Catholics made up one-fifth of the Catholic electorate in 2008, while white Catholic liberals and other (non-Hispanic) minority Catholics each accounted for roughly one-tenth of the Catholic vote. The share of the Catholic vote made up of white moderates has been declining over the past decade. In the 2000 election, white moderates accounted for 42% of all Catholic voters, compared with 32% in the 2008 election. Over this period, both white conservatives and Hispanics have increased their share of the Catholic electorate. White Catholic moderates generally take liberal positions on social issues but hold conservative views on the role and size of government. These cross pressures may help explain why in recent elections the shifts in voting among white

Lydia Scrafano, right, lights a candle in St. Bede’s Catholic Church in Williamsburg, Va. Jay Paul/USA Today/RNS



Catholic moderates have been greater than among Catholics as a whole.

Contours of the Catholic vote When considered as a whole, Catholic voters have been closely divided in recent presidential elections. In 2000, for instance, 50% of Catholics voted for Democrat Al Gore, while 47% supported Republican George W. Bush. In 2004, 52% of Catholics backed Bush while 47% voted for Democrat John Kerry. In 2008, Catholics backed Democrat Barack Obama over Republican John McCain by a 54%-45% margin. But while Catholics as a whole have been narrowly divided in recent elections, there are clearly identifiable Catholic subgroups that vote as relatively cohesive blocs. White Catholics who describe themselves as political conservatives, for instance, are a reliably Republican constituency; roughly eight-in-ten or more white Catholic conservatives have voted for the Republican candidate in each of the last three presidential elections. At the other end of the spectrum, white Catholics who describe themselves as politically liberal have been strongly Democratic, casting upwards of three-quarters of their votes for the Democratic candidate in the three most recent elections. Most minority Catholics also have voted for Democratic candidates in presidential elections in recent years. The only subgroup of Catholics that has been narrowly divided in recent elections is white Catholics who describe their political ideology as moderate. White Catholic moderates were closely divided in both 2000 (50% voted for Bush, 47% for Gore) and 2004 (52% for Bush, 47% for Kerry) before swinging strongly in the Democratic direction in 2008 (58% supported Obama, 41% McCain), according to exit polls conducted by a consortium of media organizations. While white Catholic moderates favored the Republican over the Democrat by 5 points in 2004, they supported the Democrat over the Republican by 17 points in 2008, a swing of 22 percentage points. These patterns have persisted in polling conducted so

far in 2012; neither Obama nor his Republican challenger Mitt Romney has established a consistent lead among Catholic voters as a whole. But in aggregated Pew Research Center polling conducted from January through early October 2012, white Catholic conservatives have been firmly in the Romney camp, while white Catholic liberals, Hispanics and other minority Catholics have been firmly behind Obama. Compared with other Catholic subgroups, white Catholic moderates have been more evenly split, though they have expressed more support for Obama than for Romney.2

Size of the Catholic electorate Catholics have accounted for roughly one-quarter of the overall U.S. electorate in each of the last three presidential elections. In Pew Research Center polling thus far in 2012, 22% of registered voters have identified themselves as Catholics.3 White Catholic moderates are a large group, accounting for 32% of the Catholic vote in 2008 and 8% of voters overall. But their share of the Catholic vote has been shrinking (from 42% in 2000 to 32% in 2008). This mirrors a trend among the electorate as a whole: white moderatesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; share of the general electorate declined from 39% in 2000 to 33% in 2004 and 31% in 2008. Meanwhile, white Catholic conservatives accounted for about one-quarter of the Catholic vote (25%) in 2008 and 7% of voters overall. Whereas white Catholic conservative voters were outnumbered by white Catholic moderates in 2000 by a two-to-one margin, the diďŹ&#x20AC;erence in the size of these groups was much smaller by 2008. Hispanic Catholics constituted 21% of the Catholic electorate in 2008 and 5% of the electorate as a whole. White Catholic liberals and other (non-Hispanic) minority Catholics each accounted for roughly one-tenth of the 2008 Catholic vote (11% and 8%, respectively).

Partisanship and political issues In terms of their partisanship, white Catholic conservatives are heavily Republican, while white Catholic liberals, NOVEMBER 2012 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


Hispanics and other minority Catholics are heavily Democratic. By comparison, white Catholic moderates are more evenly divided, though the balance of opinion among this group favors the Democrats. White Catholic moderates are closer to Catholic liberals than to Catholic conservatives when it comes to social issues such as same-sex marriage and abortion. For example, two-thirds of white Catholic moderates (65%) support same-sex marriage, as do threequarters of white Catholic liberals (77%). Hispanic Catholics also express more support than opposition to same-sex marriage (55% vs. 37%). By contrast, a strong majority of white Catholic conservatives (63%) oppose same-sex marriage. Views on abortion follow a similar pattern. Six-in-ten white Catholic moderates say abortion should be legal in all or most cases, as do two-thirds of white Catholic liberals. By contrast, 57% of white Catholic conservatives say that abortion should be illegal in most or all cases. Hispanic Catholics are divided on the issue, with 50% saying abortion should be legal in most or all cases and 45% saying it should be illegal in most or all circumstances. While most white Catholic moderates take liberal positions on same-sex marriage and abortion, they mostly take a conservative view when asked about the role of government. More than six-in-ten white Catholic moderates (63%) say they prefer a smaller government that provides fewer services over a bigger government that provides more services. Threequarters of white Catholic conservatives express the same view. Among white Catholic liberals and Hispanic Catholics, however, roughly six-in-ten say they prefer a bigger governBring

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See, for example, The New York Times,

“The Power of Political Communion,” Sept. 15, 2012, and Religion News Service, Will Biden-Ryan debate be a ‘Catholic smackdown’?” Oct. 10, 2012. 2

Since several of the Catholic voter subgroups account for only a small

percentage of the overall electorate, aggregating results from multiple polls is the only way to analyze their preferences. The results presented here reflect polling conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press from January through early October 2012. These results do NOT reflect the most recent estimates of Catholics’ presidential preferences; for information on religion and the current state of the 2012 presidential race, see “Trends in Voter Preferences Among Religious Groups.” 3

While Catholics constitute a smaller proportion of registered voters in

2012 Pew Research Center surveys than of voters in recent exit polls, it remains to be seen whether Catholics will make up a smaller portion of the electorate in 2012 than in previous years. For details on the survey methodology, see






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ment that provides more services. Hispanic Catholics are substantially younger than the white Catholic voter subgroups. Hispanic Catholics also have less education on average than white Catholics and are more likely to reside in the West. Roughly four-in-ten white Catholic moderates say they attend religious services at least once a week (38%). Among Hispanic Catholics, 45% say they attend Mass weekly, as do 39% of other minority Catholics. Among white Catholic liberals, three-in-ten say they attend religious services regularly (29%). White Catholic conservatives report attending Mass most often, with 52% saying they attend at least once a week.

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Catholics Care. Catholics Vote. We vote because we are citizens. But we vote conscientiously because we are people of faith. Our consciences are formed through studying Scripture and the teachings of the Church, examination of the facts, and prayerful reflection.


“strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.”

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- At the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., the differences on abortion between President Barack Obama and his Republican presidential opponent, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, were clear. Speeches in prime time on successive nights touted the president’s support for keeping abortion legal, and videos praised his stands on “reproductive choice” and WASHINGTON (CNS) -- President, Obama revoked “women’s rights.” President George W. Bush’s policy on embryonic stemAt the Republican National Convention in Tampa, cell research, which limited such research to cell lines Fla., there were few speeches that touched on abortion, derived from embryos before August 2001. He allowed but candidate Romney pledged in his the National Institutes of Health to acceptance speech to “protect the expand the acceptable lines to any eme sanctity of life” and the GOP platform bryos created for in vitro fertilization b states that “the unborn child has a funpurposes and later discarded, if the p damental individual right to life which couple agreed to such research. c cannot be infringed.” “The Catholic faith requires Catholics to Romney’s campaign site calls stem“We support a human life amendoppose abortion, embryonic stem-cell recell research “a great scientific fronc search, euthanasia, assisted suicide and the ment to the Constitution and endorse redefinition of marriage. These matters are ttier,” but says it “must be pursued with legislation to make clear that the Fournot negotiable, for they contradict the naturrespect and care.” ral law, available to everyone through human teenth Amendment’s protections apply reasoning, and they violate unchanging and “When confronted with the issue to unborn children,” the platform adds. unchangeable Catholic moral principles. Inof stem-cell research as governor of o “We oppose using public revenues to stead, they are fundamentally moral questions Massachusetts, Mitt Romney chose M involving core Catholic teachings on what promote or perform abortion or fund is right and what is wrong. Catholics who to support life by vetoing a bill that t organizations which perform or advodepart from church teaching on these issues would have allowed the cloning of huw cate it and will not fund or subsidize separate themselves from full communion man embryos,” it added. “Quite simply, m with the church.” health care which includes abortion Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas America cannot condone or particiA coverage.” City and Bishops Michael O. Jackels of pate in the creation of human life when p The Democratic Party’s platform Wichita; John B. Brungardt of Dodge City; and Edward J. Weisenburger of Salina. the sole purpose of its creation is its th approved in Charlotte says the party

Stem cell research



U.S. Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and U.S. President Barack Obama gesture toward each other during the second U.S. presidential debate, held Oct. 16 at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. CNS photo/Mike Segar, Reuters

sure destruction.” The campaign site expresses support for adult stem-cell research and “alternative methods to derive pluripotent stem cells, such as altered nuclear transfer and direct reprogramming” and says Romney as president “will focus his energy on laws and policies that promote this kind of research to unlock the medical breakthroughs that our loved ones so desperately need.”

it adds.

Assisted suicide

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- On the issue of assisted suicide, neither candidate has taken a clear stand, although the Republican platform states: “We oppose the nonconsensual withholding or withdrawal of care or treatment, including food and water, from people with disabilities, including newborns, as well as the elderly and infirm, just as we oppose active and passive euthanasia and assisted WASHINGTON (CNS) -- On the issue of the death suicide.” penalty, the Democratic platform says it “must not be The Democratic Party’s platform makes no mention arbitrary.” of the issue. “DNA testing should be used in all appropriate cirIn response to a question about assisted suicide in cumstances, defendants should have 2008, Obama said he was “mindful of effective assistance of counsel, and the the th legitimate interests of states to preadministration of justice should be fair vent a slide from palliative treatments v and impartial,” it adds. into in euthanasia” but thought that The Republican Party’s platform “the people of Oregon did a service “ In their quadrennial statement “Forming says, “Courts should have the option of for the country in recognizing that as fo Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” offerimposing the death penalty in capital the th population gets older we’ve got to ing Catholics guidance for election decisions, the bishops say: murder cases.” think about issues of end-of-life care.” th “Our national experience over the “Our nation’s continued reliance on the death last several decades has shown that citipenalty cannot be justified.” They support efforts to end the use of the death penalty “and, zen vigilance, tough but fair prosecuin the meantime, to restrain its use through tors, meaningful sentences, protection WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The broader use of DNA evidence, access to effecof victims’ rights, and limits on judicial nation’s economy, which has been put n tive counsel, and efforts to address unfairness and injustice related to application of the discretion can preserve public safety through the wringer, is on center stage th death penalty.” by keeping criminals off the streets,” for fo the November elections as voters

Death penalty




look to what the two major presidential candidates are saying In their quadrennial statement “Forming about the situConsciences for Faithful Citizenship,” offering Catholics guidance for election decisions, ation and what the bishops say: their response is for getting it “The economy must serve people, not the other way around.” back on track. As the U.S. The bishops urged voters to look to candidates Bureau of Labor who will practice stewardship and provide a safety net for the poor and vulnerable, and to Statistics puts it, judge “economic choices and institutions by despite the ofhow they protect or undermine the life and dignity of the human person.” They also noted ficial end to that that the government should also “live within severe economic its means as an indispensable part of our nadownturn, many tion’s economic recovery.” “It is irresponsible for those elected to positions of political statistics related leadership to fail to address realistically and to indicators of effectively government debt and unfunded U.S. economic obligations.” health -- such as employment, construction, manufacturing and consumer spending -have yet “to return to pre-recession levels.” White House officials emphasized there has been steady progress in rebuilding the economy under Obama, while Republican Mitt Romney’s campaign said the president has failed to do enough to boost the nation’s struggling economy or create more jobs. Both presidential campaigns put a lot of emphasis on the economy and claim their respective plans will better help the middle class and create more jobs. Obama’s job creation plan puts emphasis on shortterm efforts to stimulate hiring as well as promote jobs in “green technologies.” His plan also emphasizes increased spending in education to better prepare the nation’s future workforce. Romney’s job creation plan is centered on making the environment better for businesses through changing current government regulations on businesses and reworking government taxation and spending policies. The U.S. bishops similarly have noted the economy’s poor condition but have taken it a step further to say it “represents a serious economic and moral failure for our nation.”

Environment WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Given their knowledge of Catholic social teaching on the environment, those who make it their stock in trade to promote stewardship of the earth using Catholic principles say the two major presidential candidates’ positions on environmental issues

leave something to be desired. “...neither President (Barack) Obama nor Governor (Mitt) Romney seem to give climate change or environmental justice the serious attention these issues deserve,” said Dan Misleh, executive director of the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change. Holy Cross Brother David Andrews, a senior representative for the Washington-based think tank Food and In the U.S. bishops’ statement “Forming Wa te r Wa t c h , Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” it says: noted that both “We have a moral obligation to protect the candidates are planet on which we live -- to respect God’s s u p p o r te r s o f creation and to ensure a safe and hospitable hydraulic fracenvironment for human beings, especially children at their most vulnerable stages of turing, a process development.” by which water Later in the statement, it adds, “Protecting the is injected into land, water and air we share is a religious duty rock to release of stewardship and reflects our responsibility natural gas. to born and unborn children, who are most vulnerable to environmental assault.” “So far in the election, the quality of the environment is really not on the map,” said Walt Grazer, a consultant for the National Religious Partnership on the Environment and a former director of the U.S. bishops’ environmental justice program. “Whether that changes between now and the election...remains to be seen.” Grazer, though, gave credit to the Catholic bishops for keeping the environment on their national agenda.

Foreign policy WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Both major candidates -President Barack Obama, the Democrat, and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney -- have kept Afghanistan on the back burner as they crisscross the country even though 68,000 U.S. troops remain on the ground as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. While the Obama administration has said the surge helped, the insurgency remains a potent force and threatens the security of troops and Afghan civilians. The growing number of so-called “green on blue” attacks on U.S. trainers by Afghan allies has raised new concerns that the long-sought stability is far from realization. Obama’s reference to Afghanistan on his Web site is two lines long, promising to withdraw U.S. troops by the end of 2014. Romney’s Web site offers a longer narrative on the war. But his criticism of the president’s surge and the 2014 deadline to withdraw forces is longer than his plan for NOVEMBER 2012 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


addressing Afg h a n s e c u r i t y. “Withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan unThe bishops have encouraged the U.S. government to focus more on diplomacy, developder a Romney ment and humanitarian assistance and less on administration exclusively military actions. Other concerns that must be addressed, the bishops have will be based on pointed out, include: co n d i t i o n s o n • protecting human rights and religious the ground a s freedom; • minimizing the loss of human life; and assessed by our • assisting refugees and internally dism i l i t a r y co m placed people while fostering economic manders,” the and agricultural development. site concludes. None of those issues is specifically addressed Other foreign on the candidates’ Web sites. policy issues are addressed generally by both candidates’ Web sites. Romney’s site generally addresses concerns emanating from the Middle East, such as the civil war in Syria, Iran’s nuclear research, relations with Israel and the political evolution in countries impacted by the Arab Spring. Obama stresses his desire to reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles and strengthened relations around the world and particularly sites Israel, NATO allies, Asia and Latin America.

Healthcare WASHINGTON (CNS) -- There are few issues in the 2012 presidential campaign on which the major candidates have more clearly differentiated opinions than health care. Much of President Barack Obama’s stand on health care is built on provisions of the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which former Ma s s a c h u s e t t s Gov. Mitt Romney, the RepubIn the U.S. bishops’ statement “Forming lican candidate, Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” it says: has said should be Affordable and accessible health care is an repealed. essential safeguard of human life and a fun“President damental human is also an urgent national priority. Reform of the nation’s health Obama believes care system needs to be rooted in values that that quality, afrespect human dignity, protect human life, and fordable health meet the needs of the poor and uninsured, especially born and unborn children, pregnant insurance you can women, immigrants, and other vulnerable rely on is a key populations. Religious groups should be able part of middleto provide health care without compromising their religious convictions. The USCCB cla ss security,” supports measures to strengthen Medicare says the Demoand Medicaid...



cratic candidate’s campaign Web site. “By putting a stop to insurance company abuses, Obamacare is giving millions of Americans peace of mind.” Romney, on the other hand, says on his campaign Web site that the Affordable Care Act “relies on a dense web of regulations, fees, subsidies, excise taxes, exchanges and rule-setting boards to give the federal government extraordinary control over every corner of the health care system.” The Republican candidate told AP in mid-September he would replace the health care law with his own plan that would still allow young adults and those with pre-existing conditions to get coverage. Both Catholic voters and the general public place health care among the top five issues that affect their voting decisions.

Immigration WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The vastly different approaches of Democratic President Barack Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney on immigration share a common denominator: both men agree that O b a m a d i d n’t accomplish what he intended to when he was elected in The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2008, when he describe comprehensive reform as a law that: promised that comprehensive • allows families to reunite more easily; • offers the estimated 11 million undocuimmigration remented people in the country a path form was high on toward legal residency and citizenship; his agenda. • revamps the employment-based visa system; Obama said • allows for control of the borders; and in a Sept. 20 fo• whittles the years-long backlog for legal rum on the Spanimmigration among its key provisions. ish-language network Univision, his priority after taking office had to be getting an economic slide under control, and that when he could turn to immigration, support he counted on in Congress had evaporated. Cardinal Roger M. Mahony, retired archbishop of Los Angeles, who has made immigration reform the focus of his work in retirement, described both Romney and Obama as “totally vague” in explaining how they will tackle immigration. “The presidential candidates need to give leadership on this issue, and they need to explain more fully to the American people how they value our immigrant history,

the presence of immigrants in our midst today, and how to bring millions of people out of the shadows of our society,” the cardinal said.

Religious freedom WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Over the past several months, the U.S. Catholic bishops and other religious leaders have urged Americans to defend religious liberty in the United States in the face of what they see as threats to that freedom. The issue has been at the forefront for the Catholic bishops since the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced in January that it would The U.S. Catholic bishops, in their document require most re“Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship” -- which outlines church teaching on ligious employers contemporary issues for Catholic voters to provide free -- speaks broadly on the issue of religious contraceptive freedom by stating: coverage against “U.S. policy should promote religious liberty their moral objecand other basic human rights.” tions. The bishops have repeatedly described the At both of the HHS mandate, which violates church teachnational political ing, as a restriction on religious liberty. conventions this summer, Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, mentioned religious liberty in his closing prayers. At the close of the Republican National Convention Aug. 30 in Tampa, Fla., he gave thanks for the “singular gift of liberty” and prayed for a renewed “respect for religious freedom” and a “new sense of responsibility for freedom’s cause.” During a closing benediction Sept. 6 at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., the cardinal prayed that God would “renew in all our people a profound respect for religious liberty: the first, most cherished freedom bequeathed upon us at our founding.” Both political parties mention religious liberty in their platforms. The Democratic Party platform states the Affordable Care Act “ensures that women have access to contraception in their health insurance plans,” adding that President Barack Obama “has respected the principle of religious liberty.” The HHS mandate does have a religious exemption,

but its critics say it is so narrow it would protect only those religious employers who seek to inculcate their religion and who primarily employ and serve people of their own faith. The GOP platform uses the phrase “war on religion” to describe the Obama administration’s “attempt to compel faith-related institutions, as well as believing individuals, to contravene their deeply held religious, moral, or ethical beliefs regarding health services, traditional marriage, or abortion.” The broader implications of religious freedom were addressed by Pope Benedict XVI in his mid-September visit to Lebanon, where he called religious freedom a basic human right and a prerequisite for social harmony.

Same sex marriage WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate, and President Barack Obama, the Democratic candidate, hold opposite views on legalizing same-sex marriage. Romney stresses the need to preserve traditional marriage between one man and one woman. In May, Obama announced his support for same-sex marriage as a matter of civil rights. The GOP platform calls the institution of marriage the “foundation of civil society.” “Even as we believe that marriage, the union of one man and one woman must be upheld as the national standard, a goal to stand for ... we embrace the principle that all Americans should be treated The U.S. Catholic bishops, in their docuwith respect and ment “Forming Consciences for Faithful dignity,” it said. Citizenship,” which outlines church teaching on contemporary issues for Catholic voters The Demostates that: cratic Party plat“Marriage must be defined, recognized, and form says it supprotected as a lifelong commitment between ports “marriage a man and a woman, and as the source of the equality” and next generation and the protective haven for children.” “the movement to secure equal treatment under law for same-sex couples.” It also supports repealing the Defense of Marriage Act and passage of the Respect for Marriage Act. The party platform also stressed the need for “churches and religious entities to decide how to administer marriage as a religious sacrament without government interference.” NOVEMBER 2012 | SOUTH TEX AS CATHOLIC


God’s will be done To reform society to one of justice and peace, Catholic voices must be heard in the public square


was recently asked why it is important that Catholics vote and that the Catholic voice be heard in the public square. Let us look at the situation of our world and our country as we attempt to give a brief answer to this question, this very important question. We can, of course, describe our society today as secular, as a society that has turned away from an objective or universal moral code and towards a more relativistic attitude to values; meaning that there is no or little objective truth by which people individually and collectively should lead their lives. This, and many more characteristics, brings us to understand that God has been marginalized in peoples’ lives and from society in general. One principal reason for this, which is important to acknowledge–especially during this Year of Faith, is that we as Catholic Christians have contributed to this phenomenon by our own lack of attention to God’s will in our lives and in our participation in society. How many of us actually think in terms each day of “doing God’s will?” If we believe that God is the creator of all that is seen and unseen and the


Father of all, then God has a will, a plan for each one of us and for the world in which we live. Are we paying attention to God’s will each day and also when we vote? During this Year of Faith, it is important that each one of us take time to intensify our love for the will of God in our lives. Being attentive to God’s will allows us to reduce the voice of our own egos and wills, in order to listen to God’s truth. When that happens, we realize that God’s truth is the universal truth for all. It is not a matter of a private code of values only for those who believe, but it is meant for all. As Jesus said in the Gospel of John, “the truth will set you free.” If that is true for us in our lives, and we discern that, then we realize we have the responsibility to share that with others. Thus the voice of the Catholic in the public square is important, it is our responsibility to bring the truth that God has revealed to us; not to impose it upon others but to be that liberation that each man and woman is seeking. The truth will bring each person in society to his or her full human dignity and potential. When we discover that truth is a part of God’s will we see life differently and we want to be involved not only in Church life but also in the society around us. It is important that each one of us not only vote, but be a voice such as John the Baptist crying out in the desert; preparing the way of the Lord, preparing the way of goodness, preparing the way of peace, preparing the way of life and respect for life.


Most Rev. Wm. Michael Mulvey Bishop of Corpus Christi

That voice is not just a voice of a moral code, it is the voice of truth, and it is the voice of God’s will. In order to reform our society to one of justice and peace it is important that our voices be heard. There is no easy solution to this complicated problem; however, this can be the beginning of the restoration of our society in which we bring God back into the consciousness and the awareness of those in public life. As Catholics, the issue of life is always at the forefront and it must continue to be paramount, especially during the coming election. As Catholics we recognize that abortion is intrinsically evil, meaning that it is evil in itself. Because abortion is the taking of an innocent human life–a life that has no ability to protect itself and has no guilt within itself–that act in itself is evil. We have the responsibility for protecting life, beginning in the voting booth. There are many other issues that each one us must consider in the

ing days before the election, namely immigration, the economy, the vulnerable, etc. We must do so with an “informed conscience.” I encourage all of you during this time not only to vote, but to vote with an informed conscience; to vote with the heart of Christ; and to vote according to God’s will, as best as we can understand His will. Let us move beyond the emotions of the debates and the partisanship of the campaigns and listen to the voice of the Lord God who speaks within each one of us and within the life of the Church. I have been and will continue to pray for all of us as we decide on whom our public officials will be that lead us over the next few years. I ask God’s blessing on our country that we may truly be a society of justice, and a society that promotes life, liberty and happiness for all. May we truly be a nation “under God.”

Christ calls us to love both God and neighbor

We do so through informed participation in political life


e are in the last few days before the presidential elections. The last several months have been filled with speeches, debates, campaign ads, conflict and controversy.

While there are many moral issues before us, every issue is not equal. + Issues that directly affect


The growing disparity between rich and poor means most of the world’s resources are in the hands of a small percentage of its people. The federal budget is a moral document and must prioritize the poorest and most vulnerable among us.


The millions of undocumented persons living in the United States deserve our compassion. There is an immigration problem, and we need a humane solution to it.


War, terror, and violence have caused thousands of lost lives. We must work for just solutions to conflict in the Holy Land, throughout the Middle East, and beyond.

human lives—such as abortion and euthanasia—are fundamental and demand serious consideration.



Our Constitution heralds religious liberty in the First Amendment, yet increasingly people of faith are having to fight to retain this basic right. There is a move in the nation to redefine marriage. The marriage of a man and a woman is the foundation of the family and an essential core element of a flourishing society.



The Scripture readings for the Sunday before the election provide a breath of fresh air to remind us that God is the center of our existence, and that we are called to make him the foundation of our lives. This does not mean that we are to separate ourselves from the world and focus exclusively on God. Rather, as the Gospel points out, love of God and love of neighbor are united, and both are our task as believers. What does this mean for us as Catholics in this election? Let’s begin by taking a look at the first two readings. In Deuteronomy we read, “Fear the Lord, your God, and keep, throughout the days of your lives, all his statutes and commandments which I enjoin on you, and thus have long life.” (Dt 6:2-6) The Responsorial Psalm tells us, “I love you, O Lord, my strength, O Lord, my rock my fortress, my deliverer.” (Ps(s)18:2-3,3-4,47,51) These readings remind us that God is the foundation for our lives, we owe him everything that we are. We are reminded that all that we have is a gift, and we express our gratitude through the way we live our lives, the decisions we make and how we treat others. In this election, we should look to our faith and remember that the Lord is our strength, our rock, and our deliverer. In the Second Reading we learn that “The law appoints men subject to weakness to be high priests, but the word of the oath, which was taken after the law, appoints a son, who has been made perfect forever.” (Heb 7:23-28) The primacy of our faith is an important idea as we approach the elections, which are only a few days away. As we approach the elections, tensions often rise high. We may feel particularly passionate about one candidate or another. Or, we may feel anxious, not knowing who to vote for, not really


feeling that any candidate fully reflects Catholic teaching. The Apostle Paul recognized that no human being–apart from the person of Jesus, who is also divine–is perfect. In his letter to the Hebrews, Paul contrasts the high priests, who, though holy, were also “subject to weakness,” with Jesus, who is perfect. This reflection reminds us as the election approaches that we cannot put our hope wholly in any human being, or in any candidate, or any party. In fact, our loyalty is first to God and his laws. Thus, the bishops warn us, in their statement “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” that as Catholics, we should be guided more by our moral convictions than by our attachment to a political party or interest group. When necessary, our participation should help transform the party to which we belong; we should not let the party transform us in such a way that we neglect or deny fundamental moral truths. Our Catholic social teaching framework “does not easily fit ideologies of ‘right’ or ‘left,’ ‘liberal’ or ‘conservative,’ or the platform of any party.” Our loyalty is ultimately to God and the values of our faith, and this can make us feel like we are “between two worlds,” because none of the options we have to choose from fully embody Catholic teaching. In the Gospel reading, the Apostle Mark describes how, “One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him, ‘which is the first of all the commandments?’ Jesus replied, ‘the first is this: Hear, O Israel the Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.’” Knowing that our true loyalty is to God might make us feel as if we


simply shouldn’t vote at all. Yet, we are challenged by the words of the Gospel reading, in which Jesus proclaims the two most important Commandments: Love of God and love of neighbor. One way that we live out our love of God is through our love for our neighbors. Catholic teaching calls us to do all that we can to protect the rights and dignity of all, especially those who are poor and vulnerable. Christ calls us to love both God and neighbor. Loving God above all things makes it possible for us to love our neighbor rightly and justly. As we strive to apply our Catholic moral and social teachings to the political decisions and issues before us, we seek to make choices that allow us to best live out love for our neighbors. But who is our neighbor? The unborn child. The poor family. The elderly person. The immigrant in our midst. The victim of war. We are called to give special attention to those who are vulnerable or marginalized in anyway. In their statement on “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” the bishops highlight these pressing issues that affect our neighbors: • Abortion and other threats to life and dignity; • Efforts to force Catholic ministries to violate their consciences or stop serving those in need; • Efforts to redefine marriage and undermine marriage as between one man and one woman and an institution essential to the common good; • An economic crisis which has devastated lives and livelihoods, and the duty to respond in ways that protect the poor and future generations;

• The failure to repair a broken immigration system in ways that respect the law, human rights, the dignity of immigrants and refugees, families and the common good; and • Wars, terror, and violence which raise serious moral questions about the human and moral costs. As we prepare to go to the polls this week, “Catholic voters should use the framework of Catholic teaching to examine candidates’ positions on issues affecting human life and dignity as well as issues of justice and peace and they should consider candidates’ integrity, philosophy and performance. It is important for all citizens ‘to see beyond party politics, to analyze campaign rhetoric critically, and to choose their political leaders according to principle, not party affiliation or mere self-interest’.” As Catholics, we believe that “responsible citizenship is a virtue, and participation in political life is a moral obligation” By voting, we can defend human life and marriage and care for the needs of the most vulnerable members of our society: the unborn, the poor, the unemployed, the elderly, the homeless and the immigrant. They need us to speak on their behalf. In their “Introductory Note to Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” the bishops note that Catholics must make “important distinctions among moral issues acknowledging that some of these issues involve the clear obligation to oppose intrinsic evils which can never be justified and that others require action to pursue justice and promote the common good.” Put your faith in action by voting this Tuesday, Nov. 6. But remember that Catholics’ responsibility to be involved in political life does not end after the elections.

The Catholic Difference CAMPAIGN 2012—What kind of country do you want? George Weigel Denver Catholic Register


n his speech to the Democratic National Convention nominating President Obama for a second term, former president Bill Clinton said that the choice before America was a stark one: What kind of country do you want to live in? That’s exactly right.

Do you want to live in an America with a robust array of legally protected civil society institutions, supported by volunteerism and charitable giving? Or do you want to live in an America, in which the government occupies more and more of the public square, squeezing to the margins of our common life the voluntary associations that have long enriched our democracy? Do you want to live in an America, in which the national government recognizes that certain moral truths about the human person stand in judgment on law and public policy? Or do you want to live in an America, in which utility, not dignity, is the governmental measure of the human person? Do you want to live in an America

The Catholic Difference that is recovering a sense of the decencies, a country in which moral conviction born of biblical faith is welcomed in public life and neither the culture nor the government deplore biblical morality as irrational bigotry? Or do you want to live in an America in which both culture and the government think of human beings as bundles of desires that public policy and the public purse are supposed to satisfy? Do you want to live in an America that respects the inalienable right to life declared in the Declaration of Independence—an America that gladly affords legal protection to the unborn, the radically handicapped, and the elderly because it has rejected what Blessed John Paul II called the “culture of death” and has rebuilt a robust and compassionate culture of life? Or do you want to live in an America in which an unborn child has less legal



protection than a protected species of wolf in a national park—an America in which the mildest criticism of Planned Parenthood results in your being denounced by both public officials and the media? Do you want to live in a country that cherishes and protects religious freedom in full? Or do you want to live in a country where religious freedom has been dumbeddown to a “privacy” right to certain weekend leisure activities? Do you want to live in an economically robust America in which earning a living is not only possible, but is celebrated as a dignified expression of responsibility and self-respect? Or do you want to live in an America in which the national government is the primary economic actor? Do you want to live in a responsibility society or an entitlement society? Do you want to live in an America

that is pioneering new ways of combining economic growth, the empowerment of the poor, compassion for the underprivileged, and fiscal responsibility, thereby setting a new path for the democracies of the 21st century? Or do you want to live in a country that spends profligately and burdens future generations with both


for freedom? Or are you resigned to living in a world where jihadists murder American diplomats, tear down the U.S. flag, and raise the flag of radical Islam over U.S. embassies with impunity? Do you want to live in an America that combines its traditional hospitality to the stranger with respect for the rule of law? Or do you want to live in a countr y in which demagoguery makes it virtually impossible to create sane immigration policies? Do you want to live in a country that has rebuilt a public culture of civility? Or do want to live in an America in which the politically incorrect are decried as Nazis? Stark choices. Indeed. (George Weigel is Distinguished Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C. The Denver Catholic Register, the official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Denver, distributes his column.)

Do you want to live in a country that cherishes and protects religious freedom in full? Or do you want to live in a country where religious freedom has been dumbeddown to a “privacy” right to certain weekend leisure activities? unpayable debt and the economic stagnation that sky-high debt-service causes? Do you want to live in an America that is respected throughout the world for being just as well as strong, an America that supports others’ quest

Voters arrive to cast their ballot in the New Hampshire. Early voting is ongoing throughout the nation in a run for election day on Nov. 6. CNS photo/Eric Thayer, Reuters




Assisted suicide isn’t so bad…

if you just don’t count the victims

Father Tadeueusz Pacholczyk, Ph.D. National Bioethics Center


everal states are considering legislative measures to let physicians prescribe–but not administer–a lethal dose of a toxic drug to their patients, thereby assisting their patients to commit suicide. This is known as physician-assisted suicide. Advocates of this practice assure us that this can be a good choice for someone who is dying, or who wants to die.

If physician-assisted suicide really represents a “good choice,” we need to ask why should only physicians be able to participate? Why should only physicians be allowed to undermine public trust of their profession through these kinds of death-dealing activities? Why not include police, for example? If a sick person expresses a wish to die, the police could be notified, and an officer would arrive bearing a suitable firearm. He would load it with bullets, cock the gun and place it on the bedside stand of the sick patient. After giving

instruction on the best way to angle the barrel, the officer would depart and the patient could then pick the device up and shoot himself. Bang! “Policeassisted suicide.” Besides physician-assisted suicide and police-assisted suicide, “militaryassisted suicide” could be offered as well. Members of the armed forces would bring in a standard-issue hand grenade upon request, explaining to the sick patient how to remove the pin properly and how to place the device so as to achieve the most rapid, painless and destructive death. The assisted-suicide paradigm would readily admit of other creative approaches as well—society could sanction “assisted drowning” where lifeguards could be asked to assist those wishing to die by providing them millstones to take them to the bottom of lakes and oceans. But if a lifeguard helped people drown, would you want him watching your family at the beach? It is troubling how many individuals fail to grasp the radical absurdity of allowing physician-assisted suicide. Suicide is no joking matter. Regardless of how it transpires, it is a catastrophe for those who end their own lives, for their loved ones left behind, and for society more broadly. Some people may decide that their lives are no longer worth living, but our society has always recognized that decision to be a tragedy and a mistake; that’s why high bridges have signs encouraging suicidal individuals to seek help rather than jump.

Making Sense out of

BIOETHICS Suicide hotlines are open 24 hours a day because we seek to prevent as many deaths as we can. We treat as heroes those who walk along bridges or climb tall buildings and try to talk people down. Commentator Greg Pfundstein stresses how this sound and consistent cultural message is flatly contradicted when we allow physicians to prescribe lethal drugs so people can kill themselves—it is like replacing the suicide intervention signs on bridges with signs that state, “Ask your physician if jumping is right for you.” Simply put, such jumping is never a “good thing,” and it is only our own foolhardiness that lets us feign it could be, whether physicianassisted or otherwise. I remember reading a Letter to the Editor in the local paper of a small town many years ago. The woman wrote about the death of her grandparents—



idea that suicide could ever be a good thing is >> aThetotal crock and a lie. It leaves behind deep scars

and immeasurable pain on the part of family and friends. well educated, intelligent and seemingly in control of their faculties—who had tragically committed suicide together by drinking a deadly substance. They were elderly and struggling with various ailments. Her first-hand perspective was unflinching. “It took me years to forgive my grandparents after they committed suicide. I was so angry at what they had done to me and my family. I felt betrayed. I felt nauseated. At some fundamental level I just couldn’t believe it had really happened, and I couldn’t believe that they didn’t reach out to us for help. I thought the pain would never go away. The idea that suicide could ever be a good thing is a total


crock and a lie. It leaves behind deep scars and immeasurable pain on the part of family and friends. We don’t have the right to take our own lives because we didn’t give ourselves life.” I’m reminded of the words of the mayor of one of our great cities, who declared: “The crime rate isn’t so bad if you just don’t count the murders.” Assisted suicide, similarly, isn’t so bad if you just don’t count the victims: the many broken individuals, broken families and broken hearts. A friend of mine in Canada has struggled with multiple sclerosis for many years. He often speaks out against assisted suicide. Recently, he sent me a picture of himself taken with his


smiling grandchildren, one sitting on each arm of his wheelchair. Below the picture he wrote, “If I had opted for assisted suicide back in the mid-1980s when I first developed MS, and it seemed life as I knew it was over, look what I would have missed. I had no idea that one day I would be head over heels in love with grandchildren! Never give up on life.” (Father Tadeusz Pacholczyk, Ph.D. earned his doctorate in neuroscience from Yale and did post-doctoral work at Harvard. He 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. See


A word regarding...

the real war on women Sister Anne Marie Walsh, SOLT

P Contributor

BS recently aired a documentary on women in six different countries called

“Half the Sky;” based on the book of the same name by Nicholas Kristof and his wife, Sheryl WuDunn. The documentary features countries where women have been marginalized by societies that devalue their worth and negate God’s design.

In Sierra Leon rape was used as a weapon of choice during the civil war and has now become mainstream. In Cambodia sex-trafficking brothels are filled with younger and younger girls who are locked up and even caged, made to take “clients” non-stop. In Vietnam girls, especially from the countryside, are discriminated out of educations and left with little hope for much of a future.



underlying falsehood is that women cannot >> the be equal to men unless they are able to eradicate their offspring and sterilize themselves.

Genital mutilation still goes on, causing chronic pain and complications. It still is practiced in Somaliland where a huge percentage of women die in child birth because of these complications and the lack of medical care. In India the caste system and dire poverty still creates a conducive environment for parents to sell their young girls into brothels, traumatizing them for life and where generational prostitution is an entrenched way of life for many women. In Kenya violence against women is so prevalent that women have begun initiatives of education and microfinance to begin to bring change to their situations. And then there’s China, which wasn’t mentioned in the documentary, but whose one-child policy has resulted in forced abortions, sterilizations, infanticide of girls and a huge gender imbalance, which creates fertile ground for human trafficking. There is another country where women have been victimized by a powerful propaganda that has brought them to be ashamed of their bodies and the meaning of their bodies. Because of this propaganda, they have sterilized themselves in great numbers and had 50 million of their babies aborted in the last 40 years. All this has been done under a euphemism called “women’s reproductive health.” How exactly is it that women’s health care becomes synonymous with ending newly conceived life and mutilating reproductive capacity, is the unasked question. But the underlying falsehood is that women cannot be equal to men unless they are able to eradicate their offspring and sterilize themselves. This country of course is the United


States of America; and many countries in the West now promote this agenda. The hidden lie is that women cannot have control of their destiny unless they can get rid of what makes them women. So they must have free access. People say this is a non-issue in this election, that there is no real war against women in this country. Yet, if we don’t get this fundamental question right, everything else is skewed. The question of how we understand woman is a question of primary importance because it affects one half of our population and how that population participates in bringing this country to true greatness. Make no mistake about this. The current propaganda has been just as lethal to women and children in the U.S. as anything that goes on in any country in Asia, Africa or Latin America. Any man–or woman–who encourages a woman to think that access to sterilization and abortion will make her equal to men, has rejected her womanhood, and therefore has rejected her as a real person. Are there injustices against women? Of course. Are there things that need to change? Of course. Do women need support in times of crisis and difficulty? Without question. But is this the best answer we are able to come up with? Our lives depend on our voting for the men and women who really support us as women and who do not encourage us to sterilize ourselves and deny who we are as women, expecting us to believe that only this will allow us to participate on an equal footing with men. Let us vote for those who respect the feminine genius as it was given to us by God and who gladly and grate-


fully receive our gifts first in family, and then in every other area of human activity. We ought not vote for any man, woman or party that rejects us in the very gift of our womanhood. In the countries mentioned above, incredible, selfless people–many of them victims themselves–are doing tremendous outreach and helping to change things. They are women and men of real courage. They are fighting to bring about real change, raising the standard of women’s lives to what they should be. Some of the answers will need to be rethought. But the positive movement is there. As the documentary says: “ women and girls are part of the solution, not the problem.” In this country, let us shake off the propaganda daze and stand up. Let us say, “No more” to the tyranny of misrepresentations that drives so much of the political agenda. We are a gift precisely as women. Let’s take back control over our own destinies and rid ourselves of these deceptions so we can stand in the light of the Truth about our dignity and the greatness of our calling, precisely as women, to the whole of humanity. And let’s embrace the men who understand this and respect it and move with us, not against us. For women who have been used and deceived by the present culture, take heart. Repentance and change is a movement of the heart, and women are creatures of the heart. And once we realize the deception that has been foisted upon us, the denigrations that have been used for our own destruction can be stripped of their power, and the feminine genius can then be unleashed for the building up of a true civilization of life and love.

Are Catholics Idol Worshippers? Father Jesus Francisco Lopez



oman Catholics are frequently accused by fundamentalist Christians of being “idol worshippers” because of the presence of statues in our churches. Fundamentalists believe that the Bible is the sole rule of faith and cite certain passages throughout Scripture to support their accusations.

“You shall not make yourself a carved image or any likeness of anything in heaven above or on earth beneath or in the waters under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them.” (Ex. 20:4-5) “You shall not bow down to their gods or worship them or observe their rites, but throw them down and smash their cultic stones.” (Ex. 23:24) These two quotes, and there are others, do condemn the worship of idols. A Catholic reading these passages might be convinced to question his or her Catholic beliefs on holy images. After all, say the fundamentalists, “it’s in the Bible.” Who would dare contradict the Bible? However, Holy Scripture itself nullifies and dismisses the accusation by presenting passages in support of making and using holy images. God instructed Moses on how to build a sanctuary so that He could reside amongst the Israelites. God’s instruction included the carving of two winged creatures (angelic beings) to protect the mercy seat. “Model one

of the winged creatures at one end and the other winged creature at the other end; you will model the winged creatures of a piece with the mercy seat at either end.” (Ex.25: 19) Solomon too followed the same directions for building the temple during the Jewish restoration after the exile. “In the Holy of Holies he modeled two winged creatures of wrought metal work and overlaid them with gold.” (2 Chr. 3:10-11) After the Israelites rebelled, God sent fiery serpents to bite them and those who were bit died. Moses interceded for the people and God Himself instructed him to make a bronze serpent as a remedy against death. “Make a fiery serpent and raise it as a standard. Anyone who is bitten and looks at it will survive.” (Num. 21 :8-9) Unlike the two earlier quotes from Exodus, these three passages permit the making and use of statues. At this point it would seem that the Scriptures contradict themselves on this matter. However, it is not a question of inherent biblical contradiction but

one of understanding the content within the context. In the early days of the Old Testament the Israelites lived amidst a pagan culture, which worshipped statues of natural realities. God had not yet visibly revealed Himself to the Israelites therefore they did not have a point of reference for His likeness. They were forbidden to try and depict the true God in any material form because without a reference they could end up making statues in the likeness of the pagan gods. The result would have been to mistakenly transfer the worship of the true God of Israel to an image made of stone. Eventually they would have fallen into paganism. This is exactly the problem, which the passages from Exodus that prohibit the making and worship of images are trying to avoid. What then can we make of the passages that allow the fabrication of statues? These should be understood in a very different context. The passages that prohibit the making and worship



The overall conclusion from these texts is that God prohibits and condemns the worship of statues, but does not forbid the use of statuary in a ritual setting. Are Catholics “idol worshippers?” The accusation could be valid if a person were to actually believe that in and of itself a stone or plaster image of Christ, the Virgin or a Saint is indeed a god and worthy of worship. I have never met a faithful Catholic who holds such a misguided position. However, I do constantly meet those who by the use of holy images visualize the majesty of God, the tenThe Brazen Serpent sculpture by Italian artist Giovanni Fantoni is seen in a view of the Holy der love of our Blessed Mother and are encouraged to persevere through the Land from Mount Nebo in Jordan. It is symbolic of the bronze serpent created by Moses in example of the Saints. the wilderness (Nm 21:4–9) and the cross upon which Jesus was crucified (Jn 3:14). Anyone who accuses a Catholic of CNS photo/courtesy of Jordan Tourism Board of North America idolatry by using a few selected passages from the Bible ignores the fact embellishing worship space (Ex.25: that Scripture itself vindicates the of statues are set in the context of 19; 2 Chr. 3:10-11) or the ritual use of Catholic position on the use of holy avoiding paganism; those that allow statues. (Num. 21: 8-9) images. the practice are set in the context of

Nov. 1 | Thu | All Saints | white | solemnity | [holy day of obligation] Rv 7:2-4, 9-14/1 Jn 3:1-3/Mt 5:1-12a (667) Pss Prop Nov. 2 | Fri | The Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed | white/violet/ black (All Souls’ Day) Wis 3:1-9/Rom 5:5-11 or 6:3-9/Jn 6:37-40 (668), or any readings from no. 668 or from the Lectionary for Ritual Masses (vol. IV), the Masses for the Dead, nos. 1011-1016 | Pss Prop Nov. 3 | Sat | Weekday | green/white/ white [Saint Martin de Porres, Religious; BVM] Phil 1:18b-26/Lk 14:1, 7-11 (484) Nov. 4 | SUN | THIRTY-FIRST SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME | green | Dt 6:2-6/Heb 7:23-28/Mk 12:28b-34 (152) Pss III Nov. 5 | Mon | Weekday | green | Phil 2:1-4/Lk 14:12-14 (485) Nov. 6 | Tue | Weekday | green | Phil 2:5-11/Lk 14:15-24 (486) Nov. 7 | Wed | Weekday | green | Phil 2:12-18/Lk 14:25-33 (487) Nov. 8 | Thu | Weekday | green | Phil


3:3-8a/Lk 15:1-10 (488) Nov. 9 | Fri | The Dedication of the Lateran Basilica | white | feast | Ez 47:1-2, 8-9, 12/1 Cor 3:9c-11, 16-17/Jn 2:13-22 (671) Pss Prop Nov. 10 | Sat | Saint Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church | white | memorial | Phil 4:10-19/Lk 16:915 (490) Nov. 11 | SUN | THIRTY-SECOND SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME | green | 1 Kgs 17:10-16/Heb 9:24-28/Mk 12:3844 or 12:41-44 (155) Pss IV Nov. 12 | Mon | Saint Josaphat, Bishop and Martyr | red | memorial | Ti 1:1-9/Lk 17:1-6 (491) Nov. 13 | Tue | Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, Virgin | white | memorial | Ti 2:1-8, 11-14/Lk 17:7-10 (492) Nov. 14 | Wed | Weekday | green | Ti 3:1-7/Lk 17:11-19 (493) Nov. 15 | Thu | Weekday | green/white [Saint Albert the Great, Bishop and Doctor of the Church] Phlm 7-20/Lk 17:20-25 (494) Nov. 16 | Fri | Weekday | green/white/ white [Saint Margaret of Scotland; Saint


Gertrude, Virgin] | 2 Jn 4-9/Lk 17:26-37 (495) Nov. 17 | Sat | Saint Elizabeth of Hungary, Religious | white | memorial | 3 Jn 5-8/Lk 18:1-8 (496) Nov. 18 | SUN | THIRTY-THIRD SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME | green | Dn 12:1-3/Heb 10:11-14, 18/Mk 13:24-32 (158) Pss I Nov. 19 | Mon | Weekday | green | Rv 1:1-4; 2:1-5/Lk 18:35-43 (497) Nov. 20 | Tue | Weekday | green | Rv 3:1-6, 14-22/Lk 19:1-10 (498) Nov. 21 | Wed | The Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary | white | memorial | Rv 4:1-11/Lk 19:11-28 (499) Nov. 22 | Thu | Saint Cecilia, Virgin and Martyr | red/white [For pastoral advantage, the proper Mass of Thanksgiving Day may be used. Readings are of the day (no. 500), or may be taken from the Lectionary for Ritual Masses (vol. IV), nos. 943-947 (see esp. Sir 50:22-24 [943.2]/1 Cor 1:3-9 [944.1]/Lk 17:11-19 [947.6])] memorial | Rv 5:1-10/ Lk 19:41-44 (500) Nov. 23 | Fri | Weekday | green/red/

white/red [Saint Clement I, Pope and Martyr; Saint Columban, Abbot; Blessed Miguel Agustín Pro, Priest and Martyr] Rv 10:8-11/Lk 19:45-48 (501) Nov. 24 | Sat | Saint Andrew D ng-L c, Priest, and Companions, Martyrs | red | memorial | Rv 11:4-12/Lk 20:27-40 (502) Nov. 25 | SUN | OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, KING OF THE UNIVERSE | white | solemnity | Dn 7:13-14/Rv 1:5-8/ Jn 18:33b-37 (161) Pss Prop Nov. 26 | Mon | Weekday (ThirtyFourth or Last Week in Ordinary Time) | green | Rv 14:1-3, 4b-5/Lk 21:1-4 (503) Pss II Nov. 27 | Tue | Weekday | green | Rv 14:14-19/Lk 21:5-11 (504) Nov. 28 | Wed | Weekday | green | Rv 15:1-4/Lk 21:12-19 (505) Nov. 29 | Thu | Weekday | green | Rv 18:1-2, 21-23; 19:1-3, 9a/Lk 21:20-28 (506) Nov. 30 | Fri | Saint Andrew, Apostle | red | feast | Rom 10:9-18/Mt 4:18-22 (684) Pss Prop

Missionary Daughters of the Most Pure Virgin Mary in the Diocese of Corpus Christi Sister Kathleen McDonagh, IWBS Contributor


other Julia Navarrete Guerrero, foundress of the Missionary Daughters of the Most Pure Virgin Mary, was born in Oaxaca, México in 1881. As an adult, she gathered together a small group of women who wished to serve the Church, but the Mexican Revolution was making this very difficult. Knowing the difficulties Mother Julia and her group were experiencing, her home diocese requested that the sisters go to Texas to minister there, and this they agreed to do. Mother Julia and her companions arrived in the Diocese of Corpus Christi, on Oct. 24, 1916. Father Isidro Cavazos, the first pastor of Saint Martin parish in Kingsville, warmly welcomed the sisters. Their mission, as Mother Julia saw it–to educate children and minister to adults–was now possible because of the support of the local Church. Saint Martin’s was the first parish in the diocese in which the Missionary Daughters of the Most Pure Virgin ministered, and with Father Cavazos’ help, Mother Julia and her sisters inaugurated a number of firsts for Kingsville and the surrounding area. On Nov. 3, 1916, the sisters held registration for the first Catholic school in Kingsville enrolling 75 students. Catholic education had begun in Kingsville. Because of the bilingual character of Saint Martin parish, regular school instruction was given in Spanish in the mornings and in English in the

noons. On Sundays, Sister Consuelo Alemán and Sister Concepción Pro took to the streets, ringing a bell, to call children who were not in Catholic schools during the week to Sunday catechism classes. The sisters lived in solidarity with the very poor, serving especially lowincome Mexican American families. During their early years, while their schools were still considered missions, the only financial assistance that the sisters received was $75 per month from the Catholic Extension Society. Mother Julia served as superior of the Kingsville convent from 1924 to 1927. Then in 1927, with five other sisters, she founded a convent in Gregory, Texas. That same year, Mother Julia succeeded in re-opening a foundation which had been made in Robstown in 1916 but which had been closed down in 1920 because of a shortage of sisters. In all of the locations in which Mother Julia and her sisters ministered, they worked selflessly and zealously in the evangelization of all peoples–adults, youth and children. The Missionary Daughters of the

Most Pure Virgin Mary continued to found or to work in other parochial schools in the Diocese of Corpus Christi, including in Taft, Falfurrias, Edinburg and McAllen, Texas, all at that time part of the Diocese of Corpus Christi. Ten Missionary Daughters of the Most Pure Virgin who devoted their whole lives to working in these schools and parishes now rest in peace and are buried in the cemetery in Kingsville. In more recent years, the Missionary Daughters of the Most Pure Virgin Mary have expanded their ministry beyond Texas to Washington State and in New Jersey in order to serve the Catholic Church. In these states, the sisters engage in pastoral ministry both to Hispanic immigrants and in Catholic schools. Wherever the need arises and in situations where the Missionary Daughters can help to meet that need, they are more than eager to do so. Through the years, the ministry of Mother Julia continued to contribute to the Church through the congregation that she founded.




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Pre Cana Seminar

school office at (361) 387-3814.

On Nov. 3 from 8:45 a.m.-5 p.m. in Corpus Christi Cathedral St. Joseph Hall. This is a one day marriage preparation seminar for engaged couples preparing for marriage and couples married civilly for less than one year. For more information contact the Diocese of Corpus Christi, Family Life Office at (361) 882-6191.

Election Day Prayer and Adoration


St. Theresa Thanksgiving Fest On Saturday, Nov. 3 from 4-10 p.m. at St. Theresa Community Life Center in Premont. Come join us for mouth-watering foods, hayride and much more. Performing live will be Art & Bottom Creek from 7:30-9:30 p.m.

St. John’s 2nd Annual Family Festival On Nov. 3 from 12 - 9 p.m. at St. John the Baptist Church, located at 7522 Everhart Rd. There will be live music, youth competitions, children’s movie theater, and much more. For more information, please call (361) 991-4400 or email

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Formation Course for Catechesis of the Good Shepherd The next Level I, Part 2 formation course is Nov. 4-6 at St. Philip, the Apostle, 3513 Cimarron Rd. For more information or to register, contact Cathy Harrel at (361) 960-5737 or

Old Fashioned Turkey Dinner On Nov. 4 beginning at 11 a.m. join Saint Patrick Mission in San Patricio for an Old Fashioned Turkey Dinner. The dinner will be held in the Old Parish Hall on FM 666. Turkey plates are available for a $7 plate donation. For more information, please contact the parish at (361) 547-5748.

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On Nov. 6, St. John the Baptist Parish will host a day of “Prayer and Adoration” on 7522 Everhart in Corpus Christi. The day starts at 8 a.m. with a Votive Mass for the nation, followed by exposition and a rosary immediately following Mass. Holy Hour will be held at noon and evening prayer and benediction will start at 6:45 p.m. The church will be open all day until 7 p.m. for those wishing to pray.

Weekend begins on Thursday, Nov. 8 at 5 p.m. through Sunday, Nov. 11 at 1 p.m. at Our Lady of Corpus Christi Retreat Center on 1200 Lantana in Corpus Christi. Learn more at

On Saturday, Nov. 10 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. St. Patrick’s Altar and Rosary Society will hold their Annual Christmas Bazaar in the Parish Hall. The Society is located at 3350 S. Alameda in Corpus Christi. Vendors are welcomed and vendor tables are available for $25. Call Mildred Hoffer at (361) 884-5975 for more information.

Rummage Sale

On Monday, Nov. 12, Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish. There will be Mass beginning at 6:15 p.m., followed by a video and talk at 6:45 p.m. and a light dinner and celebration.



6th Annual Country Picnic in Alice

‘A Covenant of Love with Mary’ Classes at OLPH



On Nov. 10 from 7 a.m. – 1 p.m. at St. Thomas More Church is having their annual rummage sale 2045 18th St. in Corpus Christi. For more information call the office at (361) 888-9308.

On Nov. 5 from 7-10 p.m. join Our Lady of Corpus Christi for an Election Prayer Vigil at OLCC Campus. Divine Mercy and Rosary will be prayed every hour.

On Friday, Nov. 6, at the KC Hall in Robstown. $50 Ticket price includes: dinner, casino chips, entertainment and 40 great prizes to be given away at the end of the evening. We extend an invitation to all Alumni for recognition that evening. For more information contact Mary Ramon at (361) 387-4051 or the


Annual Christmas Bazaar

Election Prayer Vigil

Casino Night at St. Anthony’s School


Women’s St. Ignatius Silent Retreat

On Nov. 11 from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. St. Elizabeth of Hungary Parish invites everyone to their 6th Annual Country Picnic at the Jim Wells County Fairgrounds in Alice. Call the parish office at (361) 664-6481 for more information.


Christi. Orientation is for families who are interested in knowing more about adopting. Also, families can come anytime during the week if they are unable to make that Nov. 13 orientation.


Divine Mercy Retreat On Nov. 15-18 at Our Lady of Corpus Christi, 1200 Lantana. For more information call (361) 289-9095, ext. 301 for retreats.

Faithfully Yours On Nov. 16 at Our Lady of Corpus Christi on 1200 Lantana in Corpus Christi, Father James Farfaglia will present “Faithfully Yours,” a series on Humanae Vitae from 6:30-9 p.m.

98th Annual Thanksgiving Picnic in Vattmann On Thursday, Nov. 22 join Our Lady of Consolation Parish in Vattmann for a family style turkey dinner from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. There will be a Country Store, Bingo from 2-6 p.m., Turkey Shoot and much more; country western dance featuring “Border Line” from 8-12 p.m. Vattmann is south of Kingsville, Farm Rd. 628, 5 miles east of Hwy. 77.

Federation of OLG Meeting On Nov. 27 The Federation of Our Lady of Guadalupe will be having a meeting, pot luck and party at Corpus Christi Cathedral in St. Joseph’s Hall. The meeting begins at 10 a.m. For more information, please contact Senona Casas, Hospitality Committee Chairperson, at (361) 855-3305 or

‘Restless Heart’ will play at Century 16 Theater St. Pius X Catholic Church in Corpus Christi will bring the movie “Restless Heart: The Confessions of Augustine” to Century 16 Theater on Thursday, Nov. 29, at 7 p.m. The movie is for one night and one show time only. Only 400 tickets will be sold. For more information call (361) 993-4053.

To see more calendar events go to:

Spaulding for Children Orientation On Nov. 13 at 5:30 p.m. at the Spaulding for Children Office located at 500 N. Water Street, Suite 604, in Corpus

Social Media

Calendar lend en


Contact Us

Calendar of Events: Nov. 5

Election Prayer Vigil from 7-10 p.m.; Divine Mercy and Rosary will be prayed every hour.

Nov. 8-11

Women’s St. Ignatius Silent Retreat (

Nov. 15-18

Divine Mercy Retreat (

Dec. 1

Book signing with Msgr. Tom McGettrick’s new book “Do you love me? Another chat with Jesus” from Noon - 3 p.m.

Dec. 3

Perpetual Profession of our SOLT Sisters at 5 p.m. Reception to follow in the Kolbe Bldg.

Our Lady of Corpus Christi

Dec. 13-16

Men’s St. Ignatius Silent Retreat (

“Come and See” Jesus in our beautiful Perpetual Adoration Chapel!

You Are Invited:

Election Prayer Vigil Monday, Nov. 5 at 7-10 p.m.

SOLT Sisters Perpetual Profession Monday, Dec. 3 at 5 p.m. 1200 Lantana • Corpus Christi

(361) 289-9095

Ongoing Events: Every Thursday from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Church History taught by Deacon Bernie Vessa, SOLT

Every Tuesday from 7-8 p.m. Miraculous Medal Novena Holy Hour

Every 1st Sunday of the month at 4 p.m. St. Peregrine Healing Mass

Bookstore: Ext. 309 Retreats: Ext. 321

All are welcome!

Fannie Bluntzer Nason Renewal Center, Inc. 2930 South Alameda Corpus Christi, TX 78404 361-888-7537



November 2012 Issue SOUTH TEXAS CATHOLIC P.O. Box 2620 Corpus Christi, TX 78403 (361) 882-6191



South Texas Catholic - November 2012  

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 - November 2012  

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...