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Pope roots for the Italians Pope Benedict XVI wears a cap of the Italian team during an Aug. 1 audience for participants in the world swimming championships. With him at the papal summer residence in Castel Gandolfo, Italy, is the pope’s personal secretary, Monsignor Georg Ganswein.


Volume 18 • Number 23 • August 9, 2009



of the D I O C E S E of K N O X V I L L E www.d ioces eof kn ox ville.or g

No more ‘church in a box’ MARY C. WEAVER

St. Christopher Parish in Jamestown, organized in 1974, sees its first church dedicated July 25. By Dan McWilliams he feast of St. Christopher on July 25 was one of the happiest days in the history of his namesake parish in Jamestown. One of the diocese’s smallest parishes, 40 families strong, finally saw its first church dedicated, midway through its fourth decade of existence. Bishop Richard F. Stika consecrated the one-year-old building in the presence of some 75 parishioners and guests. The large window behind the altar offers a view of St. Christopher’s rural setting on a hill near U.S. Highway 127. During the dedication Mass, parishioners were able to view a show put on by Mother Nature, as sunny skies bookended a thunderstorm in the middle hour of the liturgy. “Just as incense rises to the heavens and our songs rise to the heavens, so today our prayers should rise to the heavens in grati-

SPEAKING OUT Bishop Richard F. Stika comments at an Aug. 3 press conference to inform Knoxvillians about a Planned Parenthood clinic slated to open in the Bearden neighborhood.

March to oppose clinic set for Saturday, Aug. 8 B Y MA RY C. WEAVER

he Pro-Life Coalition of East Tennessee is urging people of all faiths to turn out at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 8, to pray and to march in protest against the proposed opening of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Knoxville’s Bearden business district. The march will begin at Central Baptist Church at 6300 Deane Hill Drive. Participants will walk about seven-tenths of a mile to Homberg Drive and Kingston Pike. Speakers will address the assembly at 11:30, followed by a “procession of heal-




MAN WITH THE PLANS Parish finance manager Jim Romer shares a laugh with Bishop Richard F. Stika outside St. Christopher Church at the start of the dedication service. Mr. Romer presented the blueprints of the church to the bishop and later played the organ during the Mass. In the background are Mary Criswell and Ed Cottrell. View more photos at

tude again for the foundation of this church,” said Bishop Stika, “for those who so long ago in the ’70s believed that the community could gather together in the name of the Lord Jesus to make a difference—a difference in

faith and a difference in trust in God.” St. Christopher’s pastor of 10 years, Father Michael Sweeney, concelebrated along with his immediate predecessor there, Monsignor Philip Thoni, and Father Calvin Blankin-

ship, pastor of Corpus Christi Parish in Fruitland, Idaho, which donated the pews now in use at St. Christopher. Diocesan emcee Father Tony Dickerson and Deacon Sean Smith assisted. St. Christopher was

Dedication continued on page 6

New center will ‘save babies, help women’

March continued on page 7

Please pray for our priests

CCET opens a Pregnancy Help Center in LaFollette.

Dear Lord: We pray that the Blessed Mother will wrap her mantle around your priests and through her intercession strengthen them for their ministry. We pray that Mary will guide your priests to follow her own words, “Do whatever he tells you” (John 2:5). May your priests have the heart of St. Joseph, Mary’s most chaste spouse. May the Blessed Mother’s own pierced heart inspire them to embrace all who suffer at the foot of the cross. May your priests be holy and filled with the fire of your love, seeking nothing but your greater glory and the salvation of souls. Amen. St. John Vianney, pray for us. ■ Download prayers and a rosary booklet:

organized in 1974 as the Jamestown Catholic Mission of Blessed Sacrament in Harriman. Parishioners met for Mass in the home of William and Emily Craven and later at the Fentress County


pening the diocese’s fourth Pregnancy Help Center was a perfect example of Catholic Charities of East Tennessee’s mission: addressing the unmet needs of the most vulnerable. “This is an unmet need,” said Father Ragan Schriver, the agency’s executive director, during the July 2 dedication of the Campbell County center. “And she’s responding to it,” he added, referring to Sandi Davidson, program manager for CCET’s Pregnancy Services, which also maintains a pregnancy help center in Chattanooga and two in Knoxville. About two dozen volunteers and friends attended the dedication ceremony at the center, located



‘GOD’S MISSION’ Sandi Davidson explains how individuals, organizations, and churches in Campbell County joined forces to help pregnant women and new mothers. Mrs. Davidson is program manager for Catholic Charities’ Pregnancy Services. Behind her is the new Pregnancy Help Center’s volunteer coordinator, Jeanne Smith.

in the old West End School building at 250 W. Beech St. in LaFollette. “One of the significant things we do consistently throughout our area is provide services to people who are struggling with an unplanned pregnancy and people who are new parents who didn’t know they were going to be parents,” said Father Schriver. “We feel the most important thing we can do is try to be there for people who are struggling, and that’s what we’re trying to do with this new center.” He asked those gathered to “give a big hand” to Mrs. Davidson and to volunteer coordinator Jeanne Smith. “What a gift you are to our agency,” he LaFollette continued on page 2

letters to the


All can become ‘as single-minded’ as saints

Ginger Hutton’s column “The way of suffering” (July 26 ETC) is an accurate presentation of St. John of the Cross. However, John’s teaching can be misleading. I have attended at least two seminars on the Carmelite saints (John and Teresa of Avila). The first message is normally to read John’s poetry before his other writings. In addition, John’s father married below his station for love of the woman he married. John helped his brother find work to support himself and his mother. Teresa of Avila struggled for 18 years to let go of an attachment that prevented her from following what the good Lord was asking of her. Both of these Spanish mystics were single-minded in seeking the Lord. This also true of the Curé of Ars, the patron of the diocesan clergy, who left his parish in Ars three times to seek greater solitude. Each time his parishioners were able to talk him into returning. Jesus teaches about the narrow way. Most saints chose this route. Holiness is not the preserve of canonized saints. Those who are clergy, religious, married, or single have the opportunity to become as singled-minded as the saints. However, each of us tends to compromise between the good Lord and the world we live in. I also belong this group of compromisers. ■ —Father Evan Eckhoff, OFM, Knoxville We welcome letters to the editor and carefully consider all submissions. Letters should be 350 words or less and will be edited for grammar, style, clarity, and length. Submit them by e-mail, mail, or fax:, P.O. Box 11127, Knoxville, TN 37939-1127, 865-5848124. Letters to the editor reflect the opinions of their authors and not those of the editorial staff or the publisher.

living the



Cornbread or rolls? When Jesus mentioned bread to his listeners, he had to clarify his meaning.

I always hesitate when ordering breakfast at a restaurant in Tennessee. First, I have to choose among the many kinds of bread available. Then I have to mentally translate my Yankee terminology into terms the waitress can comprehend. Growing up in an Italian family, we used the term “American bread” for the sliced white bread most common in stores. The confusion can grow when you factor in muffins, rolls, rye, sourdough, pumpernickel, and so on. Imagine a comedy skit based on people ordering bread at a restaurant. The mix-up is far worse in today’s Gospel. In it Jesus tells the

people he is the bread come down from heaven. His listeners can’t understand what he’s saying. They protest that they know him, and he didn’t come from heaven. He came from Nazareth—or perhaps Bethlehem. They got that fact mixed up as well. Jesus realized the real problem had nothing to do with where he had been born. It had to do with calling himself bread. He was food that could be consumed. When we eat a slice of bread (whether corn or whole wheat), we receive certain elements the body needs to thrive. If we eat the bread that is the Son of God, we are nourished with the elements our soul needs to live in God for all eternity. Accordingly, Jesus attempts to clarify the problem by referring to a totally different type of bread, namely, the manna with which God fed

Eat my flesh Jesus took his teaching on the topic to a new level.

Want to try online delivery? he East Tennessee Catholic is now offering online delivery for those who would prefer to read a digital copy and to discontinue the print edition. If you would rather read the ETC online, visit to sign up. If you decide online delivery isn’t for you, you can return to a print subscription at any time. If you have questions, e-mail mary@dioceseof ■


Faith-formation classes continue he 2009 series of adult faith-formation classes began in February, with additional classes scheduled throughout the year and in locations around the diocese. The adult faith-formation program is one of the educational initiatives funded through the Growing in Faith Together capital-stewardship campaign. Classes are offered at no charge to adults in the diocese. All sessions begin at 7 p.m. and end at 9.


Personal Morality, taught by Father Michael Sweeney. Explores the foundations of how we are to live as Catholics. The class will examine the concepts of human dignity, freedom, law, sin, virtue, and conscience as well as current moral issues. Sessions take place on Tuesdays. ■ Sept. 15, Sacred Heart Cathedral ■ Oct. 27 (new date), Sts. Peter & Paul Church, Chattanooga The Sacraments, taught by Amy Roberts. Explores the foundations of what we celebrate as Catholics. The class will examine how we encounter the living Christ through each of the church’s seven sacraments. ■ Thursday, Sept. 24, St. Stephen Church, Chattanooga ■ Tuesday, Nov. 10, St. Dominic Church, Kingsport What We Believe, taught by Deacon David Lucheon. Explores the foundations of what we profess as Catholics. The class will examine the principal truths of the faith as expressed in the creeds of the church. ■ Thursday, Oct. 8, Notre Dame Church, Greeneville ■ Tuesday, Nov. 17, Sacred Heart Cathedral Catechetical formation sessions, presented in collaboration with Aquinas College in Nashville, will also be held this fall for catechists, teachers in Catholic schools, ministry leaders, and other interested adults. Each session takes place on a Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and includes hourlong modules on the Creed, the sacraments, morality, prayer, and methods. Choose one session: ■ Oct. 17, St. John Neumann Church, Farragut ■ Nov. 7, St. Elizabeth Church, Elizabethton ■ Nov. 14, St. Jude Church, Chattanooga. To register, visit, click Resources/ETC, then click Event registration in the left frame. For further details, contact Rich Armstrong at or 865-584-3307. ■ 2

AUGUST 9, 2009

ne of the grave crimes of which the first-century Romans accused Christians was cannibalism. The Romans thought they had reliable information that members of this new religion gathered together secretly on Sundays and ate the flesh of a person


named Crestus. In order to obliterate this horrendous violation of human decency, the Roman authorities decided to punish Christians and rid them from the earth by allowing them to be eaten alive. So Christians were thrown to the lions. This punishment

his people in the desert. It came from heaven and allowed the Hebrews to live in that forbidding wasteland. But it could not keep them alive forever. It was food only for the body. Jesus calls himself bread that enables people to live forever in heaven. No wonder there was confusion! Life after death was a relatively new concept for Jesus’ listeners. It was hard for them to apply it to their lives. Because it was difficult for the people to fathom what “eternal life” meant, Jesus had a tough time communicating. Most folks couldn’t get it on the first bounce. But those who thought a little harder had a remarkable revelation. We call that a mind-blowing experience: repentance. They came to realize that the eternal God offers us a share in his life. And the food through which we grow in this life is Christ. ■ Aug. 9, 19th Sunday in ordinary time 1 Kings 19:4-8 Psalm 34:2-9 Ephesians 4:30–5:2 John 6:41-51

was validated to the Romans’ satisfaction by the reaction of the condemned. They seemed to enjoy dying in this manner. They certainly did not shy away from it. One of the most famous, Ignatius of Antioch, on the prison ship taking him to Rome, wrote to fellow Christians, admonishing them not to get his sentence commuted. He wanted to be crushed by

the lions’ jaws, as wheat is crushed into flour that becomes bread and eventually the body of Christ. If the sophisticated Romans believed Christians were cannibals, we can forgive the very first people Readings continued on page 3

Aug. 16, 20th Sunday in ordinary time Proverbs 9:1-6 Psalm 34:2-7 Ephesians 5:15-20 John 6:51-58

W E E KDAY RE ADINGS Monday, Aug. 10: Feast, Lawrence, deacon, martyr, 2 Corinthians 9:6-10; Psalm 112:1-2, 5-9; John 12:24-26 Tuesday, Aug. 11: Memorial, Clare, virgin, Deuteronomy 31:1-8; Deuteronomy 32:3-4, 7-9, 12; Matthew 18:1-5, 10, 12-14 Wednesday, Aug. 12: Deuteronomy 34:1-12; Psalm 66:1-3, 5, 8, 16-17; Matthew 18:15-20 Thursday, Aug. 13: Joshua 3:7-1011, 13-17; Psalm 114:1-6; Matthew 18:21–19:1 Friday, Aug. 14: Memorial, Maximilian Mary Kolbe, priest, martyr, Joshua

24:1-13; Psalm 136:1-3, 16-18, 2122, 24; Matthew 19:3-12; vigil for Assumption solemnity, 1 Chronicles 15:3-4, 15-16 and 16:1-2; Psalm 132:6-7, 9-10, 13-14; 1 Corinthians 15:54-57; Luke 11:27-28 Saturday, Aug. 15: Solemnity, the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Revelation 11:19 and 12:1-6, 10; Psalm 45:10-12, 16; 1 Corinthians 15:20-27; Luke 1:39-56 Monday, Aug. 17: Judges 2:11-19; Psalm 106:34-37, 39-40, 43-44; Matthew 19:16-22 Tuesday, Aug. 18: Judges 6:11-24;

Psalm 85:9, 11-14; Matthew 19:2330 Wednesday, Aug. 19: Judges 9:615; Psalm 21:2-7; Matthew 20:1-16 Thursday, Aug. 20: Memorial, Bernard, abbot, doctor of the church, Judges 11:29-39; Psalm 40:5, 7-10; Matthew 22:1-14 Friday, Aug. 21: Memorial, Pius X, pope, Ruth 1:1, 3-6, 14-16, 22; Psalm 146:5-10; Matthew 22:34-40 Saturday, Aug. 22: Memorial, the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ruth 2:1-3, 8-11 and 4:13-17; Psalm 128:1-5; Matthew 23:1-12 ■

assistance. There they can find a listening ear, baby and maternity clothes, diapers, formula, referrals to other community services, and more. The local need is great, Mrs. Davidson said. Campbell County High School has the highest percentage of pregnant students among East Tennessee secondary schools, according to the Florence Crittenton Agency. And Campbell County as a whole ranks No. 23 of the state’s 95 counties in the pregnancy rate

of girls and women ages 10 through 19. “Father Joe Campbell [the pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish in LaFollette] called me and said he needed help with an adoption, and the mother was in jail. So I came up, and we got to talking, and there’s nothing here for pregnant women. That got the ball rolling, and he put me in contact with people in the community,” Mrs. Davidson said. “It just snowballed from

LaFollette continued from page 1

said, in reference to Mrs. Davidson, then thanked Mrs. Smith “who has done so much to coordinate our day today and to help put this together.” “The greatest thing we can do is honor a place like this, a place of service, by calling upon the Lord to send his Spirit upon this center to make it a missionary place,” said Father Schriver. Like CCET’s other Pregnancy Help Centers, the LaFollette facility is available to pregnant women and new mothers of all ages who need

Bishop Richard F. Stika Publisher Mary C. Weaver Editor Dan McWilliams Assistant editor


805 Northshore Drive S.W.

LaFollette continued on page 8

Margaret Hunt Administrative assistant Toni Pacitti Intern

Knoxville, TN 37919-7551

The East Tennessee Catholic (USPS 007211) is published twice monthly by the Catholic Diocese of Knoxville, 805 Northshore Drive S.W., Knoxville, TN 37919-7551. Periodicals-class postage paid at Knoxville, Tenn. Printed on recycled paper by the Knoxville News Sentinel Postmaster: Send address changes to The East Tennessee Catholic, P.O. Box 11127, Knoxville, TN 37939-1127 How to reach us:

Phone: 865-584-3307 • fax: 865-584-8124 • e-mail: • web: The East Tennessee Catholic is mailed to all registered Catholic families in East Tennessee. Subscription rate for others is $15 a year in the United States. Make checks payable to the Diocese of Knoxville. www.dioceseofk


he dwells



Back to school Learning Spanish will help the bishop fulfill an ordination promise.

A few months back, as I was travelling from St. Louis to Knoxville, I stopped for a visit to the area of my mother’s birth, a very small town named Posen, Ill. Actually, the town is now only a church, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, and the cemetery next to the church. The reason for my visit was to stop and visit the graves of my grandparents John and Lottie Musielak as well as those of a number of aunts, uncles, and cousins who rest in peace in the consecrated soil of the churchyard. If strangers visited the cemetery, they might wonder whether they were in the United States or in Poland. A majority of the stones that mark the graves of the faithful departed are engraved in Polish. The small town of Posen became the home of many who left Poland in the 19th century from the area of Poznan. I know from stories my mother told that Mass and school were conducted in Polish and English. It was a perfect blend of two cultures that continues to influence people like me so many years later. I have spent a great deal of time over the years trying to develop a greater understanding of my Polish and my Czech heritage. I have been the view from


deeply enriched by visiting these two historic areas and fortified by both their history and their food. And now I start a new chapter in acquiring another language and a greater understanding of another culture I hope to internalize in my person. On Aug. 5 I will travel to San Antonio to attend the Mexican American Catholic College to learn Spanish and come to a greater understanding of Hispanic culture. I will be involved in a special session along with Archbishop Tim Dolan—the new archbishop of New York and a good friend—as well as three additional priests from the St. Louis area. Classes last five to six hours per day, and I hope they will enable me to fulfill the promise I made to the diocese at my ordination: that I would preach in Spanish by the end of the year. I will be away from the diocese from Aug. 5 through 20. It has been some time since I sat in a classroom, so please remember me in your moments of prayer. I pray that the Spirit may be upon me as I learn a new manner of communicating and a new culture to love. These days mark an important moment in the lives of so many of my brother priests of the diocese. Aug. 1 marked the official appointments of those who have moved to various new assignments. Please remember to pray for these priests as they begin their


Komen again Representatives from the organization try unsuccessfully to change my mind.

Not long after my June 7 column (“The price of chicken”) on the Susan G. Komen Foundation was published, I received a lengthy e-mail from a representative of the foundation. I won’t publish it, but I’d like to address the “misstatement” to which the foundation called my attention. To wit, in my column I wrote that Komen “supports embryonic stem-cell research.” By that, I meant supports as in endorses, favors, approves of. Komen responded by saying, “First, Komen has not and does not fund embryonic stem-cell research as Ms. Weaver asserts.” That’s not what I asserted. I and numerous others, including the Archdiocese of St. Louis, are assuming support—as in approval—on the basis of statements in Komen publications that suggest a favorable stand on the subject. Here are two examples. The first is a quote from cancer researcher Dr. Robert Weinberg, who receives grants from Komen. The quote was published in a Komen news release dated Aug. 16, 2006, and titled “The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Contributes to Cutting Edge Research.” “Embryonic stem cells (derived from embryos that develop from eggs that have been fertilized in vitro and THE E A S T TE NNE S S E E CATHOLIC

then donated for research purposes) have the potential to give rise to many different types of tissue. Because of this, embryonic stem cells are currently considered to have the most potential for use in the regeneration of diseased or injured tissues. One of those potential roles is providing better understanding of cancer development.” In a nutshell, this scientist believes embryonic stem cells have the greatest potential to advance medical research. Komen funds his research. It sure doesn’t look to me as though either party disapproves of embryonic stem-cell research. The second example comes from a Komen announcement about a 2005 recipient of a Lasker Foundation award. The Lasker Foundation is “dedicated to the support of biomedical research toward conquering disease, improving human health, and extending life.” That sounds great, but the organization favors the use of embryos as research material. You might be interested in reading a substantial interview with researcher Dr. Irving Weissman, available on Lasker’s website: But I digress. On its own website Komen trumpeted the 2005 Lasker Award winners— Earnest McCulloch and James Till—“for ingenious experiments that first identified a stem cell—a blood-forming stem cell—which set the stage for all current research on adult and embryonic stem cells.”

new assignments. We are truly blessed to have these men of faith who are willing to give their all in service to you, the good people of the Diocese of Knoxville. I am looking forward very much to my first Diocesan Day as your bishop. The event will be held at All Saints Church in Knoxville on Aug. 22. Our theme is “You have but one teacher” (Matthew 23:8), a Scripture passage that has particular meaning for me as a bishop. I am excited that Cardinal Justin Rigali will be sharing his own reflections on the theme that morning as our keynote speaker and homilist. During the afternoon program, I will reflect on the demands our faith makes of each of us. In the first of my two talks, I will focus on the universal church and what she invites and challenges us to become in our individual vocation and the call to holiness. In my second talk I will discuss the challenges our faith asks of us here within our own diocese. I believe that by the end of the day we will all have a much better appreciation of why the church and her bishops, the successors to the Apostles, must faithfully teach and safeguard the deposit of faith that we have received from Jesus Christ. I look forward to seeing you at Diocesan Day. You can register online at, or call Paul Simoneau at 865862-5753. ■ BISHOP STIKA’ S SCHE DUL E These are some of Bishop Stika’s appointments: Aug. 5-20: Spanish language training, San Antonio Aug. 22: 9 a.m., Diocesan Day, All Saints Church, Knoxville ■

Sounds as though they think this is a good thing. In its e-mail to me Komen noted that the amount of money it funnels to Planned Parenthood is a very small part, less than 1 percent, of its community funding. That’s irrelevant. Any amount of funding for Planned Parenthood is too much. And anything beneficial Planned Parenthood provides to the community—for example, breast-cancer screenings— polishes the organization’s public image. Please don’t forget: Planned Parenthood is the No. 1 provider of abortion in the United States. One of its core missions is fetal death. Finally, Komen says that “ethicists commission [sic] by the Catholic Church have determined that it is permissible for Catholics to support Susan G. Komen for the Cure, pointing to what Komen does to provide vital medical screenings and treatment support for women and men with breast cancer.” News flash: these ethicists, Drs. Ron Hamel and Michael Panicola, cannot speak for the church, nor do they have teaching authority—no matter what sort of “commissioning” they may have received. These two have in the past said that the “morning after” pill is a morally acceptable treatment following rape. See Dignitas Personae (, No. 23, for the church’s view. They have also written that it may be licit to withhold food—thus starving a patient to death—in cases such as Terri Schiavo’s. Again, these ethicists do not speak for the church. I will continue to boycott the numerous products whose purchase helps fund the Komen Foundation. You can find a list here: corporatepartners.aspx. ■




Bishop announces priest changes, readmission to deacon candidacy n July 21 Bishop Richard F. Stika announced that Monsignor Philip Thoni had requested retirement. “I have accepted Monsignor’s request, and his retirement will be effective Aug. 5,” the bishop wrote in a July 21 memo. “Monsignor Thoni has shown himself to be a priest generous in his desire to serve Christ and his people and has served well at St. Mary Church in Gatlinburg,” the bishop wrote. “I greatly admire his commitment to the priesthood as demonstrated by his 60 years of faithful service.” Monsignor Thoni will reside at the rectory of St. Francis of Assisi Church in Fairfield Glade. The bishop also appointed Father David Boettner, the moderator of the curia, as temporary parochial administrator for St. Mary. The appointment became effective Aug. 5. “I am thankful for Father David’s willingness to share his many gifts in this capacity,” the bishop wrote. In a July 9 memo the bishop noted that Dan Alexander of St. Albert the Great Parish in Knoxville had been re-admitted to deacon candidacy and was resuming his formation. Mr. Alexander had been part of the deacon class of 2007 but had voluntarily withdrawn. Mr. Alexander was instituted as an acolyte on July 11, during a Mass the bishop celebrated with the deacons of the diocese. ■


Child-protection training sessions he Diocese of Knoxville’s program for the protection of children and youth is based on training developed by Virtus and is offered regularly throughout the diocese. A threehour seminar for adults, “Protecting God’s Children,” is required for parish and school employees and regular volunteers in contact with children or vulnerable adults and is recommended for parents and grandparents. The following training sessions have been scheduled: ■ St. Mary Church, Johnson City,


9:30 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 15; 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 16; 6:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 19 (sessions will be held in St. Anne hall) ■ All Saints Church, Knoxville, 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15 ■ Sacred Heart Cathedral, 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 18; 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 22; 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20; 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 19 (session will be held in the Shea Room). ■ St. Dominic School, Kingsport, 9 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 20 To register for a session, visit virtusonline. org. ■

Readings continued from page 2

who heard the words “whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life” for their initial repulsion. That’s probably what motivated Jesus not to back down but to continue preaching this doctrine and expanding on it. Jesus went on to another level of teaching on the subject of what we now know as the Eucharist. He stressed the concept “remain.” In other translations the Greek term is rendered “abide.” We need to abide in God. We do so by abiding in Christ. Continuing the progression, we abide in the life of Christ when we receive him into our souls by eating and drinking his body and blood. What is virtually unbelievable is that the life of the infinite God can be received by us finite humans. The good news is that Jesus has revealed the “unbelievable” to be true. When we accept this concept, the whole world is turned around. Not only is God alive, but we can and should live in him. Knowing this, we, like the early Christian martyrs, can accept and even welcome an untimely death. Time has no effect on our lives when we abide in God. We become timeless as we enter the life of the eternal God. ■ Father Brando is a retired priest of the Diocese of Knoxville.

Diocese of Knoxville procedure for reporting sexual abuse Anyone who has actual knowledge of or who has reasonable cause to suspect an incident of sexual abuse should report such information to the appropriate civil authorities first, then to the bishop’s office, 865-584-3307, or the diocesan victims’ assistance coordinator, Marla Lenihan, 865-482-1388.

AUGUST 9, 2009


Chattanooga Deanery

Holy Spirit, Soddy-Daisy ■ The parish will celebrate its 10th anniversary beginning with Mass at 9 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 13, at the pavilion. There will be Mass on Saturday, Sept. 12, but no 8 or 10:30 a.m. Masses on Sunday that weekend.

OLPH, Chattanooga ■ An all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast was served July 26 at the parish life center to benefit Food for the Poor.

St. Augustine, Signal Mountain ■ The parish will host an adult prom Saturday, Sept. 12, to benefit the senior high youths’ trip to the National Catholic Youth Conference. ■ St. Augustine is the sole supporter for the 20th straight year for Signal Mountain Social Services’ effort to provide new back-to-school supplies, backpacks, and $30 vouchers for clothing to students, with 83 youth on the mountain needing sponsorships this year. Donations should be made out to Signal Mountain Social Services and dropped off at the parish office or mailed to Signal Mountain Social Services, P.O. Box 294, Signal Mountain, TN 37377. Donations are tax deductible. Call Mary Lee at 423-8865982 for more information.

St. Catherine Labouré, Copperhill ■ The parish is participating in “Nifty Fifty” Monday-night dinners for the needy. Call Jenny Williams at 706374-6363 or Kay Jabaley at 492-5311 to help.

St. Jude, Chattanooga ■ Father Joe Brando, St. Jude’s pastor for four years until his retirement in July, has begun a blog to document his 11-week trip throughout India. Visit ■ Donate used uniforms to the St. Jude Home and School Association by placing them in the box in the parish life center. A used-uniform sale will be held in the gym during the school’s sign-up day, set for 7:30 a.m. to noon Thursday, Aug. 6. ■ The parish bridge marathon group will begin meeting in September and will finish in May. Call Alice Crowe at 875-2798 or Julia Pollak at 842-0215 for details.

St. Mary, Athens ■ The Newcomers Ministry is seek-

ing volunteers to assist with making welcome phone calls to new parishioners. Contact Sally Henderson at 423283-0059 or

Sts. Peter and Paul, Chattanooga ■ Anniversary: Robert and Sandra

Kosky (50) Cumberland Mountain Deanery

All Saints, Knoxville ■ A pilgrim statue of Our Lady of Fatima will be available in September for parish families to bring into their home for a week. Sign up in the narthex. ■ A new caregivers ministry, “Caregivers’ Morning Out,” will be offered in the parish in 90-minute meetings at 9:30 a.m. on first and third Mondays. Contact Bob Coyne at 865-671-9199 or to register. ■ A women’s breakfast will begin with 9 a.m. Mass Saturday, Aug. 29, and feature Nancy Twigg, author of From Clutter to Clarity: Simplifying Life From the Inside Out (Standard Publishing, 2007), who will present a program titled “Keep It Simple, Sister.” RSVP by Wednesday, Aug. 26, to Jessica Allen at 357-0525 or, Gussie McGee at 531-2045 or ermine, or Susan Tribble at or 690-6250. ■ Baptism: Logan Matthew Allen, son of Ben and Jessica Allen

OLPH, LaFollette ■ A “boat Mass” will be celebrated at 6 p.m. Saturdays, Aug. 8 and Sept. 5, at Flat Hollow Marina on Norris Lake. ■ Bishop Richard F. Stika will celebrate the dedication Mass for the new church at 11 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 6.

St. Francis of Assisi, Fairfield Glade ■ The friendly social rubber bridge

flight league seeks teams to play in the 2009-10 season from September to May. Call Judy Johnson at 707-9952 or Mary Vivian White at 456-6581 or sign up at the parish bulletin board. 4

AUGUST 9, 2009

Help needed for children of Christ the King in Tazewell


■ Father Adolf Busobozi, a Ugandan missionary, visited the parish recently and was presented with 560 rosaries for the parish of Katodsa in the Diocese of Fort Portal, Uganda. The rosaries were donated by parishioners of St. Francis and St. Alphonsus in Crossville. ■ Anniversaries: Jim and Helen Mc Gonagle (63), Emery and Pat Nagy (60), George and Jean McGonagle (58), William and Mary Best (55), Dan and Barbara Obermeyer (55), Ben and Jackie Ryba (52), Mike and Janet Kilar (51), James and Laura Knoll (51), Paul and Carole Forkapa (50), Tyrone and Pat Perry (45), Pat and Norma Donahue (40), Jim and Rosemary Wells (40) ■ Newcomers: James and Corinne Gabriel

St. Mary, Oak Ridge ■ Parishioners of St. Mary said farewell to associate pastor Father William Oruko, AJ, with receptions following Sunday Masses on July 26. They presented Father Oruko, who became pastor of St. Mary in Athens on Aug. 1, with a check to help him travel to Rome this year during the Year for Priests. ■ The St. Joseph Food Pantry invites gardeners to contribute extra fruits and vegetables by putting them in the collection basket in the chapel on Sundays or Mondays in August. ■ A week of prayer has been scheduled to begin after the 5:30 p.m. Mass on Saturday, Aug. 22, with a procession into the chapel and will end with a bilingual Mass at noon Sunday, Aug. 30. The Blessed Sacrament will be exposed in the chapel all week. A barbecue for the parish will be held in Columbus Hall after the noon Mass.

he economic recession has caused great hardships for the city of Tazewell, home of Christ the King Parish, a small community of about 50 families. Efforts are under way to help parish children purchase back-to-school supplies. Out of Christ the King’s 25 children, 20 have only one parent working. All Saints Parish in Knoxville and St. John Neumann in Farragut are collecting used school clothing, which will be distrib-


uted Friday, Aug. 7, at a back-to-school party Christ the King is giving for its children. School supplies and clothing will be given to the children, after dinner and a movie. On Aug. 8 parents and members of the Council of Catholic Women will take the children to buy other clothing they need to go back to school. After the shopping trip at Walmart in LaFollette, the CCW of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in LaFollette will serve lunch for the group at OLPH.

Parishioners of St. John Neumann donated money for the Christ the King children in collections Aug. 1 and 2, at Masses celebrated by Christ the King and OLPH pastor Father Joe Campbell. Older children at Christ the King are in need of used computers, and a collection of winter coats for Christ the King will be held this fall. To make a financial donation or to learn what supplies are needed, call Father Campbell at 423-5620312. ■

Burlings of Fairfield Glade mark golden anniversary alt and Dianne Burling, parishioners of St. Francis of Assisi in Fairfield Glade, celebrated their 50th anniversary June 27 with friends. They were married at St. Michael Church in Berlin, Wis., with Father Julian Bieniewski officiating. The Burlings have no children of their own but think of their 18 nieces and nephews as their kids. The Burlings retired from Tenneco Automotive Co. in Chicago and moved to the Glade in 1997. Mrs. Burling has led a Bible study wherever she has lived for the last 18 years. She is an altar




Walt and Dianne Burling

server, an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion, and a member of the St. Francis parish council. Mr. Burling is in the parish choir. He enjoys hunting, and they both enjoy golfing and gardening. ■

St. Therese, Clinton ■ The parish is helping to collect

school supplies for low-income families for Aid to Distressed Families of Appalachian Counties. The effort began July 6 and continues through Monday, Aug. 10. A list of supplies needed is on the bulletin board. ■ The annual St. Therese Fun Fair will be held Saturday, Sept. 12. New or almost-new auction items are needed. Call the parish office at 865-457-4073 for details.



St. Thomas the Apostle, Lenoir City ■ A week of prayer was held July 27

through 31 with daily adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. ■ The Friend to Friend service group needs parishioners to visit Baptist Nursing Home in Lenoir City. Call Gwynne Brandt at 865-408-9833. ■ Dinner and the movie Fireproof will be presented after the 5:30 p.m. Mass on Saturday, Aug. 29. Baby-sitting will be provided. RSVP to Tom or Beth at 671-3984 or e-mail optimistbeth@aol. com. ■ Newcomers: Jack and Linda Callahan, Jacqueline Holland, Danny and Kelly Henry and daughter Lyndsay

Notre Dame Parish celebrates confirmation Bishop Richard F. Stika confirmed 11 youth on Ascension Sunday, May 24, at Notre Dame Church in Greeneville. Concelebrating were Notre Dame pastor Father John Appiah and Father Bill Casey. Deacon Gordon Lowery of Holy Trinity in Jefferson City assisted. Seminarian Dustin Collins served as the emcee. Catechists for the class were Wesley and Lauren Lott. From left are (seated) Virginia Nagy, Meghan Kiehna, Brice Hebert, Stefania Collins, and Dierdra Bailey and (standing) Kaitlyn Horner, Samantha Durham, Dylan Jones, Bishop Stika, Ethan Lott, David Place, and Emily HagenBurger.

Five Rivers Deanery

Holy Trinity, Jefferson City ■ Parishioners have donated $1,211

for Holy Trinity’s twin parish of St. Vincent de Bainet in Haiti, with a goal being of raising $2,000. ■ The new e-mail address for the parish is

Notre Dame, Greeneville ■ A luncheon will be held after the 11 a.m. Mass on Sunday, Aug. 9, to say goodbye to diocesan seminarian, Adam Kane, whose last day at Notre Dame is Aug. 12, and to welcome back seminarian Dustin Collins, who returned from Guatemala on Aug. 5. ■ High school students and parents are invited to a dinner and meeting to kick off the new school year at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 26, in the parish hall. RSVP to Susan at 423-639-9382. ■ Anniversary: Eugene and Ruth DuBois (54), William and Barbara Price (53), Wesley and Lauren Lott (20)

St. Dominic, Kingsport

First Holy Communion for Notre Dame youth Young people at Notre Dame Parish in Greeneville celebrated their first Holy Communion on May 2. Father John Appiah was the celebrant for the Mass. Catechists for the students were Sandy Alter and Alicin Sahr. With Father Appiah are (from left, front) Caleb Smith, Sarah Fillers, Ryan Kells, Madison Dudley, and Matthew White; (middle) Chenoa Wimberley, Jennifer Gonzalez, Daniel Kindle, Laura Bustros, and Amairam Jardinez; and (back) Christian Vazquez, Jennifer Luna, and Gloria Bustros.

■ The second annual “Swimming Un-

der the Stars” event for middle and high school youth was held July 30 at the Ridgefield Country Club pool.

St. Patrick, Morristown ■ The next women’s Bible study will use The Great Adventure Bible TimeParish notes continued on page 5

Diocesan Youth Mass returns to cathedral Sept. 5 he 21st annual diocesan Youth Mass and Evening Extravaganza is scheduled for 4 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 5, at Sacred Heart Cathedral. The event is open to



high school youth, who should register through their parish youth minister. More information will appear in the Aug. 23 ETC. ■ THE E A S T TE NNE S S E E CATHOLI C


Diocesan Day 2009 is set for Saturday, Aug. 22, at All Saints Church in Knoxville. The keynote speaker will be Cardinal Justin Rigali, archbishop of Philadelphia. The theme of the day is “You have but one teacher,” from Matthew 23:8. The focus of the archbishop’s talk and his homily for the Diocesan Day Mass will be the teaching office of the bishop. Bishop Richard F. Stika will speak to the faithful during the afternoon sessions, discussing his dialogue with priests and parishioners during his first few months as shepherd of the Knoxville Diocese. The day will begin with Bishop Stika’s opening remarks and welcome at 9 a.m. The cardinal’s keynote begins at 9:15. Mass will be celebrated at 10:45, followed by lunch. Registration is $25, including lunch, through Aug. 17 ($25 but with no lunch included after Aug. 17). The student cost is $10. To register by mail, use the form printed in the June 21 ETC or download a form at To register and pay online, visit the diocesan website at Proceeds for the event will benefit Catholic Charities of East Tennessee and Catholic Relief Services. For more details, contact Paul Simoneau at 865-584-3307 or The Sevier County chapter of Tennessee Right To Life is be hosting a “Celebrate Life at Patriot Park” picnic from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 8. The chapter will provide entertainment by local talent, games, contests, activities, speakers, music, dances, food, raffles, and more. Local police and fire departments will also provide activities for children. Church groups and other organizations are invited to host a booth at the event. For more information, contact chairperson Deva Moses at 859-312-4261 or or committee member Terry Aparicio of Holy Cross Parish in Pigeon Forge at 865-6547685 or Father Donald Miniscalco, a Redemptorist priest stationed at the shrine of St. John Neumann at St. Peter Church in Philadelphia, will present a parish mission beginning at 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 13, and continuing each evening at 7 through Thursday, Sept. 17, at St. John Neumann Church in Farragut. Bible talks, Mass, and quiet time before the Blessed Sacrament will be included. Call Anita Gouge at 865-966-4540 for more information. Registered nurses interested in providing health ministry in their churches are invited to join a Faith Community/ Parish Nurse preparation class offered by Memorial Health Care System beginning Wednesday, Aug. 19. The program includes three eight-hour days and three three-hour evening sessions for a total of 33 contact hours. All sessions must be completed for contact-hour credit. Applications and a tuition deposit must be submitted by Wednesday, Aug. 5. The program has prepared 90 registered nurses representing 12 denominations. For more information, call Connie Blake at 423495-6163 or e-mail connie_blake@ “Precious in His Sight” is the theme for the Walk for Life on Saturday, Sept. 26, at Cleveland High School, which will benefit New Hope Pregnancy Help Center in Cleveland. Registration will start at 8:15 a.m., and the walk will begin at 9. Call Yaunna or April at 423-479-5825 for more information. Register online at The second annual Irish Fest on the Hill fundraiser will be held from 4 to 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 8, at Immaculate Conception Church in downtown Knoxville. Live Irish music will be provided by the Four Leaf Peat and Shamrock Road bands. The event will also feature children’s activities, vendor booths, a silent auction, an Irish bake sale, music by IC’s high school band and the Lowland Strings band, and Irish dancing. Hot dogs and hamburgers will be served from 4:30 to 8:30. A cornedbeef-and-cabbage dinner will be served from 7 to 8:30. A cash bar with beer and wine will be available from 7 to 10:30. Cost is $10 in advance or $15 at the door for adults and $5 for children, and it includes dinner. Call the parish office THE E A S T TE NNE S S E E CATHOLI C

at 865-522-1508 to purchase tickets. Knights of Columbus Council 610 in Chattanooga is collecting items for the white-elephant sale at its annual Labor Day picnic, set for Sept. 7 this year at Camp Columbus. For pickup and drop-off information, call Scott Louisell at 865-667-6936 or John Chrnalogar 544-1562. The Chattanooga Deanery Divorced and Separated fellowship group meets for Mass and brunch on fifth Sundays. The next gathering is set for Sunday, Aug. 30. The group will meet at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church for the noon Mass, then go out for brunch. For more information, call Anne Wells at 706-581-0410. The next charismatic Mass in the diocese will be held at 5 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 30, at Holy Spirit Church in Soddy-Daisy. Father Dan Whitman of Holy Trinity Parish in Jefferson City will be the celebrant. Call Dee Leigh at 423842-2305 for more information. The last of the four charismatic Masses this year will be celebrated Oct. 18 (note date change) at Holy Spirit. A Seekers of Silence Contemplative Saturday Morning will be held Aug. 8 at John XXIII Catholic Center in Knoxville. Edgar Miller will give a talk titled “Preserving Quality Time for Friendship and Family Life.” Coffee and tea will be served at 8:30 a.m.; the workshop will run from 9 a.m. to noon. Bring a bag lunch. RSVP to 865-523-7931. Sant’Egidio is a Catholic lay ecclesial movement that focuses on prayer, communicating the Gospel, friendship with the poor, and the work of peace. The Johnson City community meets for prayer at 6:30 p.m. on first and third Mondays at the Catholic Center at East Tennessee State University. The Knoxville community of Sant’ Egidio meets at 5:30 p.m. on second and fourth Mondays at the Chancery office in Knoxville. Call Father Michael Cummins at 423-926-7061.



District 13 Deputy Bill Markiewicz (left) presents the Bishop’s Award to Council 6099 Grand Knight Jason Randall. CHATTANOOGA COUNCIL HONORED

Knights of Columbus Council 6099 receives state Bishop’s Award he Knights of Columbus Tennessee State Council’s most prestigious award was one of seven recently garnered by Holy Family Council 6099 in Chattanooga. The Bishops’ Award was established to recognize Knights of Columbus councils that best promote awareness of membership, the right to life, church, family, and youth and work with people who are physically and mentally challenged. Only eight of 82 Knights councils in Tennessee received the award. Other state honors received by Council 6099 included the Vocations Activity and Charitable Activity awards, for the council’s success in raising nearly $11,000 for the Wheelchair Foundation. The council donated more than $15,000 to the state MR Foundation, an effort that placed it second among state councils, to support people with mental and physical disabilities. “We are obviously excited that the Knights of Columbus Tennessee State Council chose to recognize the work Council 6099 is doing in our community,” said Grand Knight Jason Randall. “I want to thank everyone who donated time and money generously to the council’s efforts over the past year, especially on behalf of those who benefited directly from these contributions.” Council 6099 members contributed more than 8,000 volunteer hours and $75,000 to the community last year to support local churches and seminarians, help organizations that serve the developmentally challenged, promote prolife causes, sponsor youth-development programs, and encourage stronger families. For more information, visit ■


Holy Resurrection Byzantine Catholic Mission holds Divine Liturgy celebrations at 5:30 p.m. Sundays at Holy Family Church in Seymour. All are welcome to attend, and explanations of the ceremony will be given. Call 865609-1081 to learn more. The St. Thomas the Apostle Ukrainian Catholic Mission celebrates the Divine Liturgy at 10 a.m. Sundays in the chapel at the Chancery in Knoxville and Vespers at 6 p.m. Saturdays at the Chancery. For details, call Father Richard Armstrong at 865-584-3307. Mass in the extraordinary form (“traditional Latin”) is celebrated at 1:30 p.m. each Sunday at Holy Ghost Church in Knoxville and at 3 p.m. on first and third Sundays at St. Thérèse of Lisieux Church in Cleveland. Visit for details. Upcoming events for Catholic Singles of Greater Knoxville (40 and over) include the following: ■ Sunday, Aug. 9: Easy to moderate hike. Meet in the parking lot at All Saints Church near the pavilion at 7:30 a.m. Call host Randy S. at 865556-3781 for more information. ■ Tuesday, Aug. 11: Coffee at Panera Bread in Bearden, 6:30 p.m. Call Randy S. (see above) for details. ■ Friday, Aug. 14: August birthday celebration at Smoky Mountain Brewery in Turkey Creek, 6:30 p.m. Hosted by Keith S. RSVP to 719-2832 by Aug. 13. ■ Sunday, Aug. 16: Volunteer to help sell ducks for the Aug. 22 Great Knoxville Rubber Duck Race at the Boys and Girls Club booth at West Town Mall, 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Contact Gail B. at 9668205 or ■ Wednesday, Aug. 19: Dinner and a movie, 6 p.m. Meet at Pimento’s Café & Market, 11378 Parkside Drive. Call Alan at 982-4208. ■ Saturday, Aug. 22: Progressive poker dinner party. Meet at Donna T.’s at 6 p.m. to draw the first card, then carpool at 6:30 to eat and draw cards at each of three more houses, then return to Donna’s for dessert and coffee and the drawing of the final card. A prize will be awarded for the best hand. Cost is $5. Contact Donna at 531-3839 or ■


on the

ETSU Catholic Center students attend workshop in Philadelphia ive East Tennessee State University Catholic Center members, along with ETSU campus Catholic chaplain Father Michael Cummins, attended the Campus Ministry Leadership Institute at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia from July 6 through 12. Joining Father Cummins were Elisa Carbajo, Abigail James, Jennifer Lamine, James Lane, and Kristen Reinhart While there the group joined with other Catholic campus ministry programs from 28 colleges and universities from around the country. The days were spent studying the six principles of campus ministry as laid out in the U.S. bishops’ document “Empowered by the Spirit.” For its project, the Catholic Center group developed its schedule for the next academic year based on the Scripture theme of Acts 2:42: “The disciples devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, the common life of sharing, the breaking of the bread, and the prayers.” ■


Alcoa Knights present donation Dr. David Bender (right), Grand Knight of Knights of Columbus Council 3832 in Alcoa, presents Douglas Cooperative Inc. county director Jim Chatham with a check for $3,090.43 during the council’s monthly social at Our Lady of Fatima Church in Alcoa on July 21. The money was raised during the Knights’ annual Tootsie Roll drive. This is the first of two checks that will be presented to the cooperative by Council 3832. The Douglas Cooperative provides training and assistance to mentally challenged men and women to enable them to gain employment in the community.

Parish notes continued from page 4

line video series by Catholic author Jeff Cavins, with the first meeting to take place from 10:15 to 11:15 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 23, in Father Pat Garrity’s conference room. Cost for the class is $20. Smoky Mountain Deanery

Holy Cross, Pigeon Forge ■ A boxed set of Father Jay Flaher-

ty’s 14-volume “Homilies From the Smokies” CD’s is available for $75 plus tax from the parish gift shop. Volumes 15 through 18 are now available for $10 each plus tax.

Holy Ghost, Knoxville ■ A large crowd attended the first

extraordinary-form Mass (“traditional Latin”) on Aug. 2 in new associate pastor Father John Orr’s first weekend at Holy Ghost. Father Orr had previously celebrated the Latin Mass at St. Therese in Clinton, where he had been serving as pastor until his new assignment began this month. ■ Parishioners are invited to park at Holy Ghost and walk two blocks down Central Street to the fourth annual Happy Holler Palooza and second annual Street Fair sponsored by the North Knoxville Business and Professional Association and set for 4 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15. ■ Anniversary: Frank and Dorothy Higgitt (59)

Immaculate Conception, Knoxville ■ Father Joe Ciccone, CSP, and music

director Ed Bell attended the recent


National Association of Pastoral Musicians convention in Chicago. ■ An ice cream social was held July 26 and included a screening of the movie Oh, God!

John XXIII, Knoxville ■ The Knights of Columbus served a

pancake breakfast after each morning Mass on July 19. ■ A reception to welcome Father Charlie Donahue, CSP, as new pastor was held the weekend of July 25 and 26.

Sacred Heart, Knoxville ■ The fourth annual Pasta Cook-Off

and Dessert Auction will be held from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 22, to benefit Family Promise of Knoxville. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. Family tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. To buy tickets or become a sponsor, call Mary Jo at 865-584-5404 or Family Promise at 584-2822 or visit familypromise ■ German classes will be held at the school from 9:30 a.m. to noon Saturdays beginning Sept. 12. For more information or registration forms, visit or call Dr. Stefanie Ohnesorg at 865-6943765.

St. Joseph the Worker, Madisonville ■ The women’s group’s yard sale will

be held from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 8. Workers need to arrive at 6 a.m. Proceeds will benefit the youth group. ■ AUGUST 9, 2009


Dedication continued from page 1

all the activities of a Catholic youth organization. Group member Jacquelyn King wrote a poem as a reflection and inspiration to others:

Bank in those early months, then from 1975 to June 2008 at Allardt Presbyterian Church. Father Sweeney termed the parish’s experience “unusual,” as families paid rent to the church in nearby Allardt for 33 years and also set up and took down the implements for Mass every single week throughout that time. “I called the experience the ‘church in a box,’” said Father Sweeney. “Everything the community owned fit into a small box. Families took turns bringing the box to the church, setting up a makeshift altar and preparing for the celebration of the Eucharist, then putting everything back in the box afterward and taking it home with them.” The parish’s name became the Catholic Community of Fentress County upon the Diocese of Knoxville’s establishment in 1988 before then–Bishop Joseph E. Kurtz granted the parishioners’ choice of St. Christopher as the canonical name in 2005. “Having the opportunity to have their own church was immensely important to the parishioners,” said Father Sweeney. “This is one of the reasons why they wanted St. Christopher as the name and patron of their parish. They truly

Laser tag and friends, Fun that never ends. Discovering and learning Things about yourself, Recognizing potential in others all around, Lifting people up when you see they’re down. Talents, skills, we’ve got it all! So let’s use our gifts and answer God’s call!

The third group’s poster invited interest with the title “Join the Adventure—Destination: Jesus!” The poster showed a jet traveling beyond the earth. Group four attached a popcorn container to its poster and used the words “Find your inner kernel. Come ‘pop’ with us!” A sponge was linked to the message “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—Soak Them Up While U Can!” A gift bow was placed next to a note stating “Life is a gift waiting to be unwrapped!” A fifth group used a slogan: “If God had a fridge, your picture would be on it.” They designed their poster to resemble a refrigerator with God’s “to do” list of activities for his week of creation. Hand-drawn and signed pictures were posted for each group member. Other fridge adornments attracted observers’ interest. The final group designed a Facebook page for Christ. His status update was “Jesus Christ is indahouse and he wants to be YOUR BFF” (best friend forever). Links, bumper stickers, photo boxes, and messages completed their poster. Wouldn’t you be attracted to any of these groups? Their messages are clear, direct, ageoriented, and inviting. We each reflect our faith in daily living—in our attitudes, communications, and actions. Part of our role as Christ’s modern-day disciples is to tell our story of faith, reaching out and inviting others to come, see, and listen to form their own personal relationship with him. Teens have a unique and creative way of relating to one another. We too can review the way we communicate our faith. What images and messages do we send to others about discipleship, stewardship, and our membership in our parish, faith-based organizations, and the diocesan and universal church? Every day gives us opportunities to share our faith, particularly through stewardship. Our actions show that we have listened to Christ’s words and learned from him. They demonstrate that we have a personal relationship with him that enables us to act with gratitude, responsibility, justice, charity, and generosity. We can learn so much from one another, as the creative expressions of diocesan teens demonstrate. Let us strive to look for the gifts God gives people of all ages. May we use our gifts well and encourage their development in others. Perhaps we will never learn how what we say or do can encourage the development of another person’s faith. Christ is our guide to unity with God, for all eternity, in heaven. We all share a role in supporting one another’s journey. May God bless you. ■


Stewardship continued from page 8

St. Christopher Church stands on a hill on Holt Spur Road in Jamestown near U.S. Highway 127. Parishioners began using their new church in June 2008 after traveling to the presbyterian church in Allardt for 33 years for weekly Mass. The dedication Mass was celebrated on the traditional feast day of St. Christopher, July 25. HERE IS THE CHURCH

understand what it means to be a pilgrim people.” The current 12.5acre property on Holt Spur Road was purchased from the Holt family in 2000, and ground was broken in 2006. Mr. Craven was not Catholic at the time of the parish’s founding but established a building fund in the early days of the Fentress community. “There certainly were no plans to build at that time, but I guess he figured it had to start somewhere,” said Father Sweeney. “He later became Catholic and passed away in 2000. In that same year we obtained a beautiful piece of property, and everything began rolling from there.”

Mrs. Erpenbach directs the diocesan Office of Stewardship and Development.

Medjugorje continued from page 10

of the doctrinal congregation and now Pope Benedict, banned official, diocesan, or parishsponsored pilgrimages to the shrine. However, individual Catholics are still free to visit and have a priest with them. ■ Copyright 2009 Catholic News Service/U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops

Bishop Stika blesses the faithful of St. Christopher near the beginning of the dedication Mass. A relic of St. Rafqa, given by the bishop to the parish, was placed in the stone altar.

The $650,000 church has 3,200 square feet each upstairs and down. Peter Metts of AEI in Cookeville designed the church, and Duncan Builders was the contractor. The Rev. Don Padget of Allardt Presbyterian was among the participants in the events before Mass and later presented a gift to Father Sweeney at the end of the liturgy. “We give thanks for the pastor of the Presbyterian church who joins us, the church that housed the Catholic community for over 30 years,” said Bishop Stika. “Part of our song of gratitude and thanksgiving to God this day is for the men and women of that community that they too praise Christ, the son of God. So in a very special way we thank the pastor and that community for housing us.” Charter parishioner Peggy Dalton presented the key to the church to Bishop Stika outside St. Christopher’s front doors. Longtime parish finance manager Jim Romer gave the church blueprints to the bishop. New parents Becca and Pat Padget, holding the youngest St. Christopher parishioner, 1month-old Sophia, presented a picture of the church to Bishop Stika. The congregation then entered the church singing “Let Us Go Rejoicing,” as Bob Criswell tolled

Health-care reform continued from page 10

committee, Cardinal Rigali said a “fundamental requirement” for health-reform legislation is that it “respect human life and rights of conscience.” “Much-needed reform must not become a vehicle for promoting an ‘abortion rights’ agenda or reversing long-standing current policies against federal abortion mandates and funding,” the cardinal said. “In this sense we urge you to make this legislation ‘abortion-neutral’ by preserving longstanding federal policies that prevent government promotion of abortion and respect conscience rights. “As longtime supporters of genuine healthcare reform, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is working to ensure that needed health reform is not undermined by abandoning long-standing and widely supported policies against abortion funding and mandates and in favor of conscience protection,” he added. ■ Copyright 2009 Catholic News Service/U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops 6

AUGUST 9, 2009

St. Christopher pastor Father Michael Sweeney receives a gift from the Rev. Don Padget of Allardt Presbyterian Church. Father Sweeney, assisted by his family, made several of the sanctuary appointments for the new church. St. Christopher, earlier known as the Jamestown Catholic Mission and the Catholic Community of Fentress County, has 40 families. www.d ioceseofknoxville.or g

the church bell. As part of the consecration of the altar, a relic of St. Rafqa was placed in the stone surface. St. Rafqa (1832-1914) was a Lebanese Maronite saint canonized eight years ago. Bishop Stika received the relic on a trip to Lebanon. “She was a mystic, a religious, a nun who entered a community early in her life and later in her life suffered a great deal,” said the bishop. “She was known as a woman of great holiness and perseverance and commitment. She’s most revered in Lebanon and the Middle East, and I was privileged to pray before her tomb right outside of Beirut in Lebanon about eight or 10 years ago. “The relic was given to me by the patriarch of Lebanon as a gift to carry with me throughout my life, and I am happy to give it to you in this community. It just reminds us—whether it’s the community that gathers together in Rome with Pope Benedict, the community that gathers together in Lebanon, or the community that gathers together this day in this church dedicated to St. Christopher in Jamestown—we’re all connected. We’re all connected by faith and trust and a belief in Jesus Christ.” The anointing of the altar “reminds us of the presence of Jesus Christ as it reminds us of the holy sacrifice of the Mass, the ultimate gift that Jesus gave us, the sacrifice of his life in the resurrection that was to follow,” said Bishop Stika, who was wearing a ring that belonged to St. John Neumann, which he also used when he dedicated the new church of that name in Farragut 13 days earlier. “It’s not just my hand that will anoint this altar and the walls, but somehow I believe that St. John Neumann, who was a great saint of the American church, someone who was Dedication continued on page 8



Take note of ETC deadlines


St. Jude teacher named principal of St. John Neumann School r. Sherry Morgan, diocesan superintendent of Catholic Schools, announced July 27 that teacher William (Bill) Derbyshire of St. Jude School in Chattanooga has been appointed principal of St. John Neumann in Farragut. Mr. Derbyshire was on the staff at St. Jude for 14 years, mostly recently teaching seventh- and eighthgrade science He also served as the administrator of



Bill Derbyshire

middle school discipline and for five years as athletics director, and he taught fifth and sixth grades

for two years. Mr. Derbyshire, who succeeds Dottie Morris in the top post at St. John Neumann, completed a diocesan leadership program and also has state approval to perform teacher evaluations. He received his bachelor of science degree in business administration, with a concentration in accounting, from Indiana University in 1982. He worked as an assistant controller

and controller in Indiana, Ohio, and Chattanooga before receiving his teacher certification from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 1995. He earned a master’s of education in educational leadership in 2004 from Trevecca Nazarene University. Mr. Derbyshire and wife Marilyn are parishioners of St. Jude, where Mrs. Derbyshire serves as the director of religious education. ■

Science-fair awards keep rolling in for St. Mary School in Oak Ridge or the eighth time since 1999, a student at St. Mary School in Oak Ridge has been awarded the Grand Champion Junior Division Award at the Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair. Marsha Sega, middle school science teacher at St. Mary, had students place in several categories in the recent event. Seventh-grader Kate Longaker won the Grand Champion Award. Her project was titled “Don’t Burst My Bubble,” which Kate described as an investigation to determine whether age, gender, position, or relationship affect interpersonal distance. Kate also received two special awards that were given by the American Psychological Society and the U.S. Air Force. Seventh-graders Elizabeth Sloop and



TOP PROJECT St. Mary middle school science teacher Marsha Sega stands with Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair junior division grand champion Kate Longaker and her project.

Juliana Statile both received Junior Division fourth-place awards. Elizabeth’s project was titled “Essentially Fresh: Building a Better Bread Wrapper,” which looked at using essential oils to stop bread mold by mixing them with

beeswax and putting that mixture on a bread wrapper. Elizabeth was also one of five winners of the special award given by the U.S. Navy/Marine Corps Office of Naval Research. Juliana’s project, “The ‘Root’ of the Problem,” inves-

Jonathan receives Ad Altare Dei award Boy Scout Jonathan McGee, a special-needs youth from Holy Family Parish in Seymour, received his Ad Altare Dei award just before the closing prayer at the 10:30 a.m. Mass on May 24. Jonathan, who is moving closer to earning his Eagle Scout award as well, received a standing ovation for his hard work to complete the Ad Altare Dei award. With Jonathan are Holy Family pastor Father Tom O’Connell; Jonathan’s parents, Randy (second from left) and Kathy McGee; and George LeCrone Sr., chair of the Diocesan Catholic Committee on Scouting and councilor for the Ad Altare Dei awards. THE E A S T TE NNE S S E E CATHOLI C


St. Mary’s award-winners at the science fair are (from left, front) Faith Mountain, Nic Santodonato, Anna Flickinger, Elizabeth Sloop, Juliana Statile, and Kate Longaker; (middle) Hannah Hallikainen, Sarah Miller, Mariealaina Bouchard, Julianna Romanoski, Amber Wilson, Andrea Gorrondona, and Amy Hansen; and (back) Christopher Romanoski and Freddy Gipson. Not pictured is Lindsey Chinn.

tigated whether the pH of water affects the growth of water hyacinths. Julianna Romanoski, an eighth-grader, won two Junior Division special awards. One award was given by the American Chemical Society and the other award by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. Sixth-grader Christopher Romanoski received a Junior Division second-place award from the Instrumentation, Systems, and Automation Society. Kate, Elizabeth, Juliana, Julianna, and Christopher received Excellence Awards for their projects, as did Mariealaina Bouchard and Amber Wilson. Honorable mention was awarded to students Freddy Gipson, Hannah Hallikainen, Faith Mountain, Anna Flickinger, Nicolas Santodonato, Lindsey Chinn, Andrea Gorrondona, Amy Hansen, and Sarah Miller. ■


e welcome submissions about parish and community events. Send notices by e-mail (, fax (865584-8124), or mail (P.O. Box 11127, Knoxville, TN 37939). To make sure we receive information about upcoming events in time for publication, please submit it by the following deadlines: ■ Monday, Aug. 10, for the Aug. 23 issue ■ Monday, Aug. 24, for the Sept. 6 issue ■ Monday, Sept. 7, for the Sept. 20 issue ■ Monday, Sept. 28, for the Oct. 11 issue ■ Monday, Oct. 12, for the Oct. 25 issue. When submitting photos or information about past events, please keep in mind that we have a backlog of submissions. ■


March continued from page 1

ing” at noon and prayer at 1 p.m. Representatives of the Pro-Life Coalition of East Tennessee (ProCET) sponsored a press conference on Aug. 3 to discuss their opposition to the proposed clinic and to invite citizens to the march. The press event was organized by the Knox County chapter of Tennessee Right to Life. Speakers included Bishop Richard F. Stika; Lisa Morris, spokeswoman for ProCET; Stacy Dunn, executive director of TRL’s Knox County chapter; and Dr. John McBride of the Knox County Association of Baptists. “In the months that I’ve been in Knoxville, I’ve witnessed a community of faith—a community of people coming together, recognizing the needs that surround us,” said Bishop Stika. “I know this is the Volunteer State, that people get involved in their community, and I’m grateful that I’m able to be with you today.” The bishop said that since 1973, 50 million abortions have been performed in the United States. The No. 1 U.S. provider of abortion is Planned Parenthood. “If you think of Planned Parenthood, think of abortion and of profit,” the bishop said. “They provide services, they say, but what is the service? The termination, the ending, the killing of human life. If our community allows this to happen, what does it say about the community and its protection of the most innocent of human life?” He told his listeners that they can’t sit on the fence when it comes to the defense of life. “We can’t say, ‘This doesn’t affect me or my family.’ It affects each and every one of us.” Mrs. Morris explained that ProCET members have already sent letters and made phone calls to the owner of the 4828 Homberg Drive property, where the clinic will be located; the leasing company; and the construction company that’s been hired to renovate the property. “We respectfully asked them to cease their operations with Planned Parenthood,” she said. “Although we are hopeful for their support, based on information we received over the weekend, we still want to inform the community why we are taking this action to oppose Planned Parenthood.” Mrs. Morris explained that the organization performs more than 260,000 abortions each year— surgically and through the RU-486 “abortion pill”—and collected more than $350 million in tax dollars last year. “We are here today to voice our opposition and to call for the people of Knoxville to stand with us so that Planned Parenthood doesn’t attempt to expand its business anywhere in Knoxville.” Mrs. Dunn discussed the role the organization has had in influencing Tennessee legislation. “Tennessee Right to Life has a long history and firsthand knowledge of Planned Parenthood’s legislative agenda. It’s one that undermines the will of the people,” she said. “About 12 years ago Planned Parenthood, then of Middle Tennessee, went to liberal activist courts in order to strip commonsense legislation from the law books of Tennessee. Because of their efforts, Tennessee no longer has protective legislation for women or their unborn children. “No 48-hour waiting period, no informed consent, and no regulation that says secondtrimester abortions have to be done in a hospital. These are policies that Tennesseans support overwhelmingly. “And although we’ve made major strides this legislative session, it will take years to undo the damage done by Planned Parenthood in Tennessee,” Mrs. Dunn said. Also speaking during the event was Maryann Briggs, a Bearden resident and a member of All Saints Parish in Knoxville. Mrs. Briggs expressed her concern about the way the abortion provider targets teenagers with material that is “alarming and a wakeup call to parents.” The company’s website for youngsters not only publishes explicit sexual content but also offers tips to help minors circumvent state laws that require parental consent for abortion. “This is not a simple ‘health clinic that will help prevent unwanted pregnancy,’” she said. “Planned Parenthood will aid and educate your children to explore sexual practices that may go against your values and morals, and more importantly Planned Parenthood encourages and instructs our children on how to deceive their parents.” For further information about the Aug. 8 rally, visit the website or call Mrs. Morris at 865-567-1245. ■ AUGUST 9, 2009


he Knoxville community of Chaldean Catholics—émigrés from Iraq—will gather for Mass and a get-together beginning at 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 29, at Sacred Heart Cathedral. But all Catholics are encouraged to attend, to show their solidarity with the persecuted Christian community in Iraq and to learn more about the plight of the Chaldeans. Bombings that target Christians and other religious persecutions—including forced conversions and forced marriages—continue to devastate the shrinking Chaldean population in Iraq. In July alone six Christian churches in Baghdad and Mosul were targeted, killing at least four people and injuring more than 30. Chaldean Auxiliary Bishop Shlemon Warduni of Baghdad had just finished celebrating Mass at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church—a Mass in which the community prayed for peace—when a bomb exploded on the road next to the church. “All the Christians are leaving,” Bishop Warduni told Catholic News Service on July 13. Iraq’s Christian population has dwindled to approximately half of what it was before the 2003 U.S.–led invasion. The Chaldean Catholics of Iraq are among the nation’s “smallest, most vulnerable” religious communities, according to a May 1 report from the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. The report recommended that Iraq be designated as one of the “countries of particular concern.” This designation is reserved for countries with the most egregious violations of religious freedom and for governments that tolerate such abuses. “In Iraq the government continues to commit and tolerate severe abuses of freedom of religion or belief, particularly against the members of Iraq's smallest, most vulnerable religious minorities” such as Chaldean Catholics and other nonMuslims, the commission said in its report. For further information on the Mass, contact Paul Simoneau, director of the diocesan Justice and Peace Office, at 865-862-5753 or ■


Dedication continued from page 6

born in Bohemia so long ago, also participates in this ceremony in a special way.” The altar anointing was the most significant part of the dedication for Father Sweeney, he said. “When the altar is anointed with copious amounts of sacred chrism, it speaks of the special place the altar holds in our lives. The altar at St. Christopher was crafted by local stonemasons and quarried from a mountain just a short distance from the church. The idea that the altar comes from the very ground upon which this community worships is very significant to me.” Parish consolidations in his area left Father Blankinship with some extra pews. “He contacted Extension Society and told them that he had pews and whether they knew of someone who could use them,” said Father Sweeney. “Well, we needed 14-foot-long pews. Regrettably, Father Calvin’s pews were 13 feet, 8 inches.” Those missing 4 inches nearly scuttled the deal, Father Sweeney said, with tongue firmly planted in cheek. “I told him we couldn’t possibly use them— they weren’t the right size.” Then Father Blankinship uttered the magic words. “He told me they were mahogany. They’re the pews you’re sitting in,” Father Sweeney said. “I told him, ‘What’s a few inches among friends?’” Parishioners “lovingly refurbished” the pews, “sanding the many, many years of faithful use right out of them and restoring them to the pristine condition we find them in today,” said Father Sweeney. “That took tremendous effort, but it could not have been done without Father Calvin’s tremendous generosity toward us, so we’re very thankful for that.” Father Sweeney, with help from his family, contributed more than a little labor to the church project. “We want only the best for our Lord, according to our means,” he said. “We cannot afford the sanctuary appointments we want at this time. No parishioner would bring anything into the church unless it was of exceptional quality. “I, however, had no compunction about building sanctuary appointments such as tables, chairs, kneelers, candelabras, sanctuary lamp stands, etc., and bringing them into the church for temporary use. “When we are able to purchase things of beauty and lasting value, we will replace the things I have built.” The bishop, as he has done at previous dedication and anniversary Masses, said he hoped he could return to the church to celebrate a new vocation from the parish. ■ 8

AUGUST 9, 2009

the catholic



The truth about charity The new papal encyclical ‘puts Catholic legislators and politicians on notice.’

Pope Benedict XVI’s social encyclical, Caritas in Veritate (“Charity in Truth”), is a complex and occasionally obscure document, replete with possible implications for the future development of Catholic social doctrine. Sorting out those implications will take much time and even more careful reflection. Along the information superhighway, however, careful reflection hit a few potholes in the early going, as sundry partisans sought to capture Caritas in Veritate as a weapon with which to bolster the Obama administration’s economic, health-care, and social-welfare policies. Thus in the days immediately following the encyclical’s July 7 release, we were treated to the amusing, if somewhat ironic, spectacle of self-consciously progressive Catholic magazines, bloggers, and freelancers, many of whom would rather have eaten ground glass than seen Joseph Ratzinger as bishop of Rome, blasting those who dared raise questions about the encyclical’s intellectual provenance and some of its formulations. Where were these stout-hearted crusaders when the going was tough—when, for example, the pope was under fire for his Regensburg lecture on Islam or for attempting to reconcile four excommunicate Lefebvrist bishops to the church? But that was before we en-

called to


tered the new Messianic Age. In any event, Caritas in Veritate has an important theme that, if all Catholics took it seriously, might have a measurable impact on the American culture wars and the U.S. church’s internal struggle to define Catholic identity: that is, the encyclical’s insistence, repeated several times, that the life issues are social-justice issues, such that Catholic social doctrine includes the church’s defense of life from conception until natural death. This teaching began with John Paul II’s 1995 encyclical, Evangelium Vitae (“The Gospel of Life”), in which John Paul warned that democracies risk becoming “tyrant states” if moral wrongs are legally declared “rights.” Then–Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger went a step further in his homily at the Mass for the election of a pope, on April 18, 2005. Ratzinger warned against a “dictatorship of relativism” in which coercive state power would be used to enforce the by-products of a culture skeptical about the human capacity to know the moral truth of anything: by-products such as abortion on demand, euthanasia, and “gay marriage.” Now, as Benedict XVI, Ratzinger has moved the discussion further still, teaching that the defense of life is crucial to building the “human ecology” necessary to sustain just economic practices and protect the natural environment. Caritas in Veritate has now put Catholic legislators and politicians on notice: you can’t duck the life issues or vote the


Hope for the future We need to ‘look for the gifts God gives people of all ages.’

A recent stewardship workshop with teens from our diocese was inspirational and such fun. The youth showed so much talent, enthusiasm, and commitment to their faith.

They offer great hope for the future of our faith and world. Following a presentation on how God creates each person with gifts to discover, develop, and use, the teens were given an interactive project to complete in a very short period of time. They were to design an invitational message to communicate the values and activities of Catholic youth groups to gain others’

wrong way on those issues by hiding behind an alleged commitment to the church’s socialjustice agenda. Catholic social doctrine and the church’s commitment to the right to life flow from the same source: the Catholic conviction about the inalienable dignity of every human life. A robust culture of life, the pope proposes, is essential for economic justice and environmental protection; it is also necessary if we are to avoid the dehumanization of a brave new world of stunted and manufactured humanity, the slippery slope to which is paved with misconceived compassion and embryo-destructive stem-cell research. Caritas in Veritate thus reminds the whole church that there is neither justice nor charity without truth. No society can claim to be promoting justice or solidarity if its law denies the truth of others’ humanity. That is what Roe v. Wade and its judicial progeny have done in the United States, that is why laws protective of life from conception until natural death are an imperative of social justice, and that is why “common ground” efforts to reduce the incidence of abortion, while welcome, are inadequate from the point of view of Catholic social doctrine—the moral equivalent of saying, in 1955, “OK, let’s see if we can’t get you black folks into one or two segregated restaurants in every county.” Catholic legislators have been forcefully reminded of all this by the new Benedictine encyclical. The results in the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and our state legislatures should be instructive. ■ George Weigel is a Distinguished Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C. interest, attendance, and participation. Given a piece of poster paper and access to a suitcase filled with a hodgepodge of items, the teens formed groups and immediately began thinking creatively. The first group’s design was of a suitcase covered with stickers representing countries of origin and travel. Various God-given gifts to group members were spilling out of the suitcase. The message was simple: “Different origins . . . Different gifts . . . Same journey [to a relationship with God] . . . Come join youth group TODAY!” Another group summarized Stewardship continued on page 6

LaFollette continued from page 2

there. It was amazing.” Although Father Campbell had originally offered space for the center at his rectory, she said the agency “didn’t want anybody to get the impression that we were just Catholic.” Mrs. Davidson said Catholic Charities soon learned that the former school building, with a more central location, had space available—and LaFollette mayor Mike Stanfield invited the center to locate there. “I just love the process,” said Mrs. Davidson. “You can see how God puts everything in place for you to complete his mission.” The Lord’s work is being accomplished with a whole lot of local helpers. “We got a huge grant from the LaFollette Medical Foundation, and that’s why we’re able to offer brand-new baby items,” she said. “St. Mary’s Hospital gave


Mass to be held in solidarity with Chaldean Catholics

Catholic Charities’ executive director, Father Ragan Schriver, shows CCET employee Laura Bryant the Scripture passage she would read during the July 2 dedication of the agency’s newest Pregnancy Help Center. The LaFollette center launched in April.


us funds, and the Campbell County Commissioners are paying our rent.” Mrs. Davidson also mentioned another grant that


“we’re not advertising” but that is allowing the purchase of other essential supplies. A number of churches in LaFollette continued on page 9


in our


from the


Parents, children deem Totus Tuus a hit Father Patrick Resen brings the popular catechetical program to a second parish in two years. ather Patrick Resen brought the Totus Tuus summer youth catechetical program to Holy Ghost Parish in Knoxville this year after seeing how the program blessed those who participated in it last year at Our Lady of Fatima in Alcoa, his previous assignment. About 61 youth took part in the program sponsored by Holy Ghost, which was held at Sacred Heart Cathedral School because of remodeling under way at the North Knoxville church’s downstairs parish hall. Grades one through six met in the morning for five days beginning July 13. Seventh- through 12th-graders gathered for five straight evenings starting July 12. Totus Tuus (“totally yours”) began in summer 1987 when seminarian Bernard X. Gorges of the Diocese of Wichita taught elementary students in a summer catechetical program at St. Michael Church in Girard, Kan. By the end of the 1990s, the program had spread throughout Kansas, adopted its current name, and begun to be offered in other states. The program is named for the papal motto of John Paul II. Young adults from the Diocese of Nashville Totus Tuus program formed the teaching team for the Holy Ghost event. “It was hugely successful,” said Father Resen, the associate pastor at Holy Ghost before becoming pastor of St. Catherine Labouré in Copperhill on Aug. 1. “We had 35 in the morning group and about 26 in the evening group. Every child there was enthusiastic about it, and even those who agreed to come only the first night were scrambling to make sure they could come the rest of the nights.” The Nashville teaching team was in



Totus Tuus teaching team members (back, from left) Elizabeth Riker and Christine Simpson lead a session for girls in seventh through 12th grades July 15 at Sacred Heart Cathedral School. ‘TOTALLY YOURS’

its eighth week on the road when it arrived for the Holy Ghost program. At least two of the instructors—Brian Kaup and Christine Simpson—were in their first year with Totus Tuus. Mr. Kaup is a seminarian of the Diocese of Charlotte, N.C., who is studying for the priesthood at the Pontifical College Josephinum in Columbus, Ohio. He and his Totus Tuus colleagues focused on virtues for all youth in the Holy Ghost program, with younger children learning more about the luminous mysteries of the rosary and the older group receiving guidance on vocations. “We use some of our own life experiences to help them understand the virtues and how they’re applicable in our lives,” said Mr. Kaup. “Even with the younger kids, we challenge them a few levels above where they are. Too often in America we say, ‘Oh, they’re just kids. They won’t get it,’ but you’d be surprised and amazed. “They can ‘get it,’ and our main goal is to plant seeds and create a hunger. “Our message of faith is real, so we must enter into that message and let it take root in our lives.” If Totus Tuus youth didn’t realize the significance of the Eucharist before they took part in the pro-

gram, Mr. Kaup did his best to enlighten them. “We as Catholics are given a special gift in the Eucharist. Every Sunday we physically touch Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament,” said the seminarian. “We touch the divine, and my main desire is to make them aware of the gift we’ve been given because we are able to do something that even the angels are not able to do and that is receive the Eucharist—receive the body and blood, soul and divinity of Jesus.” Miss Simpson is a full-time student at Aquinas College in Nashville and was the team leader for Totus Tuus for the Holy Ghost program. She said a goal of Totus Tuus is “to inspire [the youth] to fall more deeply in love with Jesus Christ. “Each night we give them a new virtue and teach them how they can incorporate it into their lives so that they can be the superheroes this world is looking for.” She said that goal is the same for both age groups. “We want all these children to fall in love with Jesus Christ. We’re not really teaching them the virtues—they already have them— but bringing to light why we need the virtues.” The teachers don’t “dumb down” or otherwise change the

Brian Kaup (left), a seminarian of the Diocese of Charlotte, N.C., leads the evening session for seventh- through 12th-grade boys July 15 at Sacred Heart. Next to him is Christian Lonnecker of St. John Neumann Parish in Farragut. The program was also offered for the second year in a row at Our Lady of Fatima in Alcoa. THE E A S T TE NNE S S E E CATHOLIC

material just because of the children’s age, said Miss Simpson. “We don’t water it down because the Catholic faith is so rich in tradition and truth. For the younger kids during the day, we teach them about the virtues through the luminous mysteries of the rosary, and we instill in them how to be good Christians. “With the [older] group, we can get deeper and explain how they can be modern-day Marys and how the men can be modern-day St. Josephs, especially with how this world targets young women.” Miss Simpson said that “this missionary lifestyle is not just a summer thing” for her. “It’s for the rest of my life. We’re called to be missionaries, bringing Christ everywhere we go.” Moms have become fans of Totus Tuus after seeing the effect of the program on their children, said Father Resen. “The mothers provided great feedback because they heard from their children when they got home about how wonderful it was,” he said. “A couple of mothers noticed a change in the behavior of their children after one or two days: what radio stations they were listening to, how helpful they were around the house, and so forth.” Totus Tuus is on a six-year cycle, so a first-grader can attend annually through his or her sixth-grade year without having a repeated theme, then embark on the track for older students in future summers. Father Resen encourages parents to write their pastors to drum up support for Totus Tuus. The program offers not “make-work but true instruction” on the sacraments and more, he said. “It was absolutely a huge success,” said Father Resen. “It’s the best program one can find, and it’s not that expensive.” ■

www.d ioceseofknoxville.or g



Hearing God in Scripture e come to know God “in word and sacrament.” This column focuses on God’s communication with us through the Scriptures. That’s right: when we open our Bible, it is less a process of mere reading than of praying and listening to God speaking directly to us. Done correctly, engaging God in sacred Scripture can be a real adventure, full of both surprises and comfort. Understanding the Scriptures: A Complete Course On Bible Study (Midwest Theological Forum, 2008, $45) is probably the most comprehensive book we carry on the Bible. It is one of four titles in The Didache Series, and it is written by Dr. Scott Hahn. Dr. Hahn has studied the work of many generations of Christians and Jews who have gone before him, doing a superb job of feeding his readers with the word of God in this immensely useful book. The whole Didache Series is an essential guide for both individual and group study. Introducción a las Sagradas Escrituras (Buena Prensa, 2008, $6.95) es una visión muy útil para los grupos o individuos que desean empezar a conocer al Señor en su Palabra. Los comentarios están disponibles para cada uno de los libros de la Biblia para ayudar a comprender el significado de lo que está escrito, como El Evangelio de San Lucas


Serie (Liturgical Press, 1995, $4.95). Los comentarios en los mismos se han tomado de la popular serie de estudios Collegeville Biblia. A handy book to keep nearby when reading your Bible is the Catholic Bible Dictionary (Doubleday, 2009, $45). Again, the author is Scott Hahn, and again he has provided his fellow Catholics with a means of enriching their understanding of sacred Scripture, drawing on thousands of years of scholarship to create a powerful tool for deeper and more rewarding Bible study. For the more visually oriented, we recommend the St. Joseph Atlas of the Bible from our friends at Catholic Book Publishing (2007, $9.95) and The Collegeville Bible Time-Line (Liturgical Press, 1993, $7.95), which lets you see who said what, why, and when. This little book is particularly helpful for Old Testament study. We invite you to peruse our Scripturestudy section, where you will find both new books and some familiar titles whose high quality and scholarship have stood the test of time. ■ The Paraclete is a fullservice Catholic book and supply store. Visit 417 Erin Drive in Knoxville, near Sacred Heart Cathedral, or call 865-588-0388 or 800-333-2097.

LaFollette continued from page 8

the community are on board as well. “Baptist, United Methodist, Community Hope Church—it doesn’t matter what religion you are,” she said. “Everyone has the same goal: to save babies, help babies, and help women.” A member of LaFollette United Methodist Church, Mrs. Smith said the weak economy is increasing local need for the center—“especially for women whose husband or boyfriend is out of work, and they can’t afford to buy things.” “Maternity clothes, baby items, diapers— those things cost so much,” she said. “This has really filled a gap. We have formula if people need it. If they need jobs, we can refer them to the Job Center, if they need help with food or other needs, we have resources and can take care of those needs. We have counseling if they need it.” Since early April, when the center opened its doors, more than 50 women have already come for help. About half are pregnant and half are new mothers, said Mrs. Smith. She said her own church community has been “very supportive” and recently held a baby-bottle drive that raised “quite a bit of money to help start the program.” Working for the center has been very rewarding, she said. “It’s a great opportunity for me to feel like I’m giving back a little.” Six volunteers, Mrs. Smith, and an intern staff the facility, which is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. To reach Pregnancy Services, call 877-9904673. CCET’s Pregnancy Help Centers provide pregnancy testing and education, referral services, adoption help, mentoring, and post-abortion healing and recovery. ■

AUGUST 9, 2009


from the

Anglican leader mindful of Vatican concerns


MEDJUGORJE ANNIVERSARY Thousands of pilgrims are seen in a procession held on June 24, 2001, in the Bosnian town of Medjugorje to mark the 20th anniversary of the reported visions of the Virgin Mary there.

Vatican laicizes ex-spiritual director to Medjugorje seers B Y S I MON CA LDWE LL

LONDON (CNS)—Pope Benedict XVI has laicized a Franciscan priest who served as the spiritual adviser to the Marian visionaries in Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina. The pontiff, in a document issued motu proprio (“on his own initiative”), returned Father Tomislav Vlasic to the lay state and dispensed him from his religious vows as a member of the Order of Friars Minor. Vlasic was confined to a Franciscan monastery in L’Aquila, Italy, in February 2008 after he refused to cooperate in a Vatican investigation of his activities for suspected heresy and schism. He also was being investigated for “the diffusion of dubious doctrine, manipulation of consciences, suspected mysticism, disobedience towards legitimately issued orders, and charges contra sextum [against the Sixth Commandment not to commit adultery],” as stated in the interdict signed by Cardinal William J. Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. According to the congregation, all the charges against Vlasic were “in the context of the Medjugorje phenomenon.” Vlasic was placed under an interdict threatening “severe cautionary and disciplinary measures” if he violated a range of prohibitions that included making any public appearances. However, his laicization was the result of a request from Vlasic himself, according to a letter sent by Franciscan Father Jose Rodriguez Carballo, the order’s minister general, to Franciscan provincials in the Adriatic region. In the letter dated March 10 and made public July 24, Father Rodriguez said Vlasic was “responsible for conduct harmful to ecclesial communion both in the spheres of doctrine and discipline.” Pope Benedict has imposed conditions on Vlasic “under pain of excommunication . . . and if necessary without prior canonical warning,” among them the “absolute prohibition from exercising any form of apostolate,” the letter said. There is an “absolute prohibition from releasing declarations on religious matters, especially regarding the phenomenon of Medjugorje,” and Vlasic is banned from residing in Franciscan houses, the letter said. Father Rodriguez told the provincials to “instruct the guardians and superiors of friaries about full compliance, by Tomislav Vlasic, with the pontifical measures regarding him, in particular relative to the prohibition of residing in any houses belonging to the Order of Friars Minor, under pain of removal from office.” Father Rodriguez’s letter was leaked to Marco Corvaglia, who posted it on his blog in the online version of La Stampa, an Italian newspaper. Bishop Ratko Peric of Mostar-Duvno, the diocese in which Medjugorje is located, confirmed in a July 26 e-mail to Catholic News Service that the letter was authentic. It is unclear from the letter precisely when Pope Benedict authorized the laicization. Vlasic was a central figure in the early days of the alleged apparitions, which began in 1981 when Mirjana Dragicevic, Marija Pavlovic, Vicka Ivankovic, Ivan Dragicevic, Ivanka Ivankovic, and Jakov Colo said they had seen Mary on a hillside near their town. In 1984 Vlasic wrote to Pope John Paul II to say that he was the one “who through divine providence guides the seers of Medjugorje.” But retired Bishop Pavao Zanic of Mostar-Duvno did not believe the claims of the visionaries and accused Vlasic of creating the phenomenon. Vlasic left Medjugorje in the mid-1980s to establish the Queen of Peace community in Parma, Italy, for both men and women after it was publicly revealed that he had fathered a child with a Franciscan nun and then tried to cover up their affair. The visionaries say they are still seeing apparitions and that they have received more than 40,000 visits from Mary. But three church commissions failed to find evidence to support the visionaries’ claims, and the bishops of the former Yugoslavia declared in 1991 that “it cannot be affirmed that these matters concern supernatural apparitions or revelations.” In 1985 Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, then prefect Medjugorje continued on page 6


AUGUST 9, 2009

VATICAN CITY (CNS)—Vatican concerns about how recent decisions of the U.S. Episcopal Church will affect the search for Anglican–Roman Catholic unity are echoed in a reflection by Anglican Archbishop Rowan Williams of Canterbury, the head of the Anglican Communion. Writing July 27 about the Episcopal Church’s recent general convention, Archbishop Williams repeatedly referred to the need to keep in mind the ecumenical implications of local church decisions in addition to their impact on the unity of the Anglican Communion as a whole. Archbishop Williams’s reflection, “Communion, Covenant and Our Anglican Future,” was published on the archbishop’s website at In a statement July 29 the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity noted Archbishop Williams’s concern for maintaining the unity of the Anglican Communion through common faith and practice based on Scripture and tradition. The Vatican office “supports the archbishop in his desire to strengthen these bonds of communion and to articulate more fully the relationship between the local and the universal within the church,” the statement said. “It is our prayer that the Anglican Communion, even in this difficult situation, may find a way to maintain its unity and its witness to Christ as a worldwide communion,” it added. The Episcopal Church’s general convention adopted two resolutions that may further strain relations within the Anglican Communion and with the Catholic Church: one affirmed that all ordained ministries, including the office of bishop, are open to all the baptized, including gays and lesbians; the other called for the collection and development of theological resources for the blessing of same-sex unions. Last year the Lambeth Conference, a gathering of leaders from around the Anglican Communion, strongly urged all members of the communion to respect moratoriums on ordaining openly gay bishops and blessing same-sex unions. After their general conven-



Recent Anglican decisions may make future unity with Rome impossible. By Cindy Wooden

‘FAITHFULNESS TO CHRIST’ Anglican Archbishop Rowan Williams (right) is seen with Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, during the 2008 Lambeth Conference in Canterbury, England.

tion, the leaders of the Episcopal Church wrote to Archbishop Williams, saying that their resolutions do not signal the end of the moratoriums but rather describe the position of the U.S. church. Pope Benedict XVI and his top ecumenical officer have said the Episcopal Church’s position on homosexuality and its ordination of women as priests and bishops make full Anglican–Roman Catholic unity appear impossible. Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, told the Lambeth Conference last year that what is at stake “is nothing other than our faithfulness to Christ himself.” Although recognizing the Episcopalians’ desire to respond to what they see as a pastoral need, he said the Catholic Church is convinced that its teaching that homosexual activity is sinful “is well-founded in the Old and in the New Testament” as well as in Christian tradition. And, the cardinal said, the Catholic Church also believes the fact that Christ chose only men to be his apostles means the church is not authorized to ordain women. Responding to challenges posed by modern sensitivities requires solutions that are clearly in line with the teaching of the Gospel and of Christian tradition, recognized not only by Roman Catholics but also by the Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox, Cardinal Kasper had said. In his reflection July 27

Archbishop Williams said the Anglican Communion clearly opposes prejudice against homosexual people and denounces any attempt to limit their civil liberties. But, Archbishop Williams said, “if society changes its attitudes, that change does not of itself count as a reason for the church to change its discipline.” “In the light of the way in which the church has consistently read the Bible for the last 2,000 years,” he said, any major change in church practice must have “a strong level of consensus and solid theological grounding” and must take into account “the teachings of ecumenical partners.” Recognizing the authority of and particular circumstances faced by local churches, the archbishop still insisted that a local church needs “some way of including in its discernment the judgment of the wider church. Without this, it risks becoming unrecognizable to other local churches, pressing ahead with changes that render it strange to Christian sisters and brothers across the globe.” Accepting major changes to church discipline and practice without the consensus of the entire communion, he said, “would be to re-conceive the Anglican Communion as essentially a loose federation of local bodies with a cultural history in common rather than a theologically coherent ‘community of Christian communities.’” Archbishop Williams’s reflection theorized that the future of the Anglican Communion may involve two styles of relationships: one that fully shares “a vision of how the church should be and behave” and another, less formal, style of associated churches that work together in areas of common agreement. Anglican Communion representatives to ecumenical and interfaith dialogues would be drawn only from members who fully share the communion’s vision and teachings so that the Anglicans’ ecumenical partners would know whom they are talking to at the dialogue meetings, he said. ■ Copyright 2009 Catholic News Service/U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops

House panel accepts, then rejects abortion ban in health-reform bill BY NA NCY F R A ZI E R O’B R I EN

WASHINGTON (CNS)—Despite the support of a U.S. cardinal and its own initial approval, the House Energy and Commerce Committee July 30 rejected an amendment to a House health-carereform bill that would have prohibited any mandated abortion coverage, except in cases of rape, incest, or lifethreatening danger to the mother. Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia, the chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, had urged the committee to approve a one-paragraph amendment to the America’s Affordable Health Choices Act introduced by Reps. Joseph R. Pitts, R-Pa., Bart Stupak, D-Mich., and Roy Blunt, R-Mo. “No provision of this act . . . shall impose, or shall be construed to impose, any requirement for coverage of abortion, or access to abor-

tion, or to authorize or permit the recommendation for, or imposition of, any such requirement,” except in limited circumstances, the amendment said. Approved by the committee on a 31-27 vote, the amendment was brought up for another vote after a 35-24 vote to reconsider it. The second time around, one Democrat changed his vote, and another who had not voted previously voted “no,” leading to the defeat of the amendment, with 29 for and 30 against. The committee then took up a seven-page amendment proposed by Rep. Lois Capps, D-Calif., which would prohibit abortion coverage as part of a federally mandated minimum-benefits package but would require at least one insurance plan in each “premium rating area” to cover abortion. The National Right to Life Committee called the Capps

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amendment a “phony compromise” that would lead to “elective abortions being covered under the governmentoperated ‘public plan’ the bill would create and would allow federal subsidies to flow to private insurance plans that cover elective abortions.” Deirdre A. McQuade, assistant director for policy and communications in the bishops’ Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities, said her office was disappointed at the defeat of the Pitts-Stupak-Blunt amendment and passage of the “socalled compromise” Capps amendment. But she said other amendments dealing with abortion were likely to be proposed as the various health care reform bills make their way through Congress. “We’re several steps away from being able to say we do or do not support this or that bill,” she added. In a July 29 letter to the Health-care reform continued on page 6


Aug. 9, 2009, East Tennessee Catholic  

Aug. 9, 2009, edition of The East Tennessee Catholic newspaper, published by the Diocese of Knoxville