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‘O Christmas tree’ The Vatican’s Christmas tree is erected in St. Peter’s Square Dec. 3. The tree was harvested in the northern Italian province of Bolzano, is more than 100 feet tall, and is 94 years old.


Volume 20 • Number 7 • December 12, 2010




Celebrate the bishop’s jubilee on Dec. 19

Blue Ribbon schools in DOK honored BY D A N M C W I LL I AMS

ity and county officials Nov. 19 helped St. Joseph School in Knoxville and St. Mary School in Oak Ridge celebrate their recent designation as 2010 National Blue Ribbon Schools (Sept. 26 ETC). A total of 254 public and 50 private schools nationwide received the honors, announced by the U.S. Department of Education. The program is part of the department’s effort to identify schools with the best leadership and teaching practices. “The award is a reflection of the hard work done by teachers, students, and parents,” said Dr. Sherry Morgan, diocesan superintendent of Catholic Schools. “To meet the criteria to receive that award, all those entities needed to be working together and working hard.” Bishop Richard F. Stika began the day at St. Joseph by celebrating Mass with Monsignor Xavier Mankel of Holy Ghost, Father Chris Michelson of St. Albert the Great in Knoxville, and Father Ron Franco, CSP, of Immaculate Conception in Knoxville. At an afternoon assembly, Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett and state Rep. Bill Dunn, a parishioner of Holy Ghost in Knoxville, read county and state proclamations. The school also received a certificate from Knox-


Schools continued on page 9

ast Tennessee’s newest priest, Father Moises Moreno, was ordained Nov. 13 in his hometown in Central Mexico, after a vocation journey that lasted more than 15 years. More than 500 people, including the new priest’s mother and father, packed Virgen de la Encarnacion Church in Leon, Guanajuato, as Bishop Richard F. Stika ordained Father Moreno. He is the 38th man ordained to the priesthood for the Knoxville Diocese and the third ordained by Bishop Stika. Father Moreno was ordained a deacon on Jan. 19, 2008, at Holy Spirit Church in Soddy-Daisy—his “adopted” home parish in Tennessee—by Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, the former bishop of Knoxville.


Moreno continued on page 6



Bishop Stika travels to Mexico to confer holy orders on the diocese’s 38th ordinand. By Mary C. Weaver

Bishop Richard F. Stika lays hands on Moises Moreno, the 38th priest to be ordained for the Diocese of Knoxville. The ordination Mass took place Nov. 13 in Virgen de la Encarnacion Church in Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico. View a slide show of photos at


‘The parish with a heart’ reaches its golden jubilee St. Stephen in Chattanooga, which began in 1960 as a mission of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, holds a 50th-birthday celebration Nov. 20. BY D AN M C WILLIAM S

arishioners from every era of St. Stephen Parish joined Bishop Richard F. Stika, former pastor Father P. J. McGinnity, and many other friends to celebrate the Chattanooga church’s 50th anniversary Nov. 20. St. Stephen, whose motto almost throughout its existence has been “the parish with a heart,” has had only seven pastors. As a video scrapbook played during a dinner following the golden-jubilee Mass, a loud cheer erupted as each pastor’s photo was shown. Pictures from 1977 of the final classes at St. Stephen Country Day School scrolled by, and occasionally a yell of “That’s me!” would sound from one of the dinner tables. “What a great joy it is to be with you this day as we celebrate 50 years of sacraments celebrated, the faith proclaimed and taught, and the name of Jesus being demonstrated in so many different ways,” said Bishop Stika in his greeting at Mass, celebrated on the vigil of Christ the King. St. Stephen pastor Father Gilbert Diaz, Father McGinnity, and Chattanooga dean



ishop Richard F. Stika’s silver jubilee of priestly ordination (Dec. 14, 1985) will be celebrated at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 19, at Sacred Heart Cathedral. The focus of the event is prayer for vocations, and Bishop Stika has asked the diocese’s seminarians to serve the Mass. A reception will follow in the Sacred Heart Cathedral School gymnasium. Everyone is invited to attend. ■

Father Moreno ordained for DOK

‘FIFTY YEARS OF SACRAMENTS’ On Nov. 20 Bishop Stika presided at a Mass marking the 50th anniversary of St. Stephen in Chattanooga. With him above are (from left) former St. Stephen pastor Father P. J. McGinnity, Father Camillus Blazak, Father Augustine Joseph, and current pastor Father Gilbert Diaz. A slide show of photos from the event will be available at on Tuesday, Dec. 14.

Father George Schmidt concelebrated the Mass. Deacons Gary Brinkworth and Chuck Lee assisted, and the servers were diocesan seminarians Ray Powell and Adam Royal. Also attending were Father Camillus Blazak and Father Augustine Joseph of the Alexian Village in Signal Mountain and Dominican Sisters Peter

Verona Bodoh and Anna Wray of Notre Dame High School. Founding pastor Father William Morgan was succeeded in 1970 by Father Carl Fassnacht, in 1974 by Father Francis Schilling, in 1983 by Father Herbert Prescott, in 1990 by Father Louis Junod, and in 1995 by Father McGinnity, who

served until Father Diaz’s appointment in 2005. “For 50 years this parish has been served diligently by priests, first of all by the Diocese of Nashville and now by the Diocese of Knoxville—people like yourselves who believe through prayer and reflection that they’re serving St. Stephen continued on page 8

Why Catholic Appeal contributions are mailed to an Alabama address any people who received Bishop Richard F. Stika’s request for support of the Annual Catholic Appeal are wondering why the reply envelope has an Alabama address. Some have worried that their gifts to the Diocese of Knoxville might be used to support out-of-state ministries. Nothing could be further from the truth. The diocese banks with Regions Bank in Knoxville. Regions’ gift-processing center is headquartered in Birmingham, Ala. The bank recommended that the diocese have all charitable gifts sent to its lockbox in Birmingham, ensuring that contributions can be immediately deposited into the diocese’s account. Using a bank lockbox also ensures that donor credit-card and bankaccount numbers are protected. Gifts to the Annual Catholic Appeal benefit ministries in the 36 counties that make up the Diocese of Knoxville. Proceeds are limited to serving East Tennesseans in need. ■


Diocese offers ongoing Virtus child-protection training sessions he Diocese of Knoxville’s program for the protection of children and youth—a threehour seminar called “Protecting God’s Children”—is offered regularly throughout the diocese. The seminars are required for parish and school employees and regular volunteers in contact with children or vulnerable adults and are recommended for parents and grandparents. The following training sessions have been scheduled: ■ St. Dominic Church, Kingsport, 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 11


(session will be held in the administration building) ■ St. Albert the Great Church, Knoxville, 6 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 16 ■ All Saints Church, Knoxville, 1 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 13 ■ Sacred Heart Cathedral, 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 18 (session will be held in the Shea Room) ■ Notre Dame Church, Greeneville, 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 13 (session will be conducted in Spanish) Participants are asked to donate $1 for session materials. To register, visit virtus ■

Renew sessions on prayer scheduled in all four deaneries n January four Renew: Why Catholic? enrichment sessions on prayer will be offered in the diocese’s four deaneries. Everyone is invited to attend, especially those who have been part of a Renew group. Those who have not been part of a group should notify their parish Renew coordinator that they wish to attend. There is no charge. The presenter will be Anne Scanlan of Renew International’s Why Catholic? team. The sessions are scheduled as follows: ■ 6:30 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 19, St. Dominic Church, Kingsport ■ 6:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 20, St. Jude Church, Chattanooga ■ 6:30 to 9 p.m. Friday, Jan. 21, St. Mary Church, Oak Ridge ■ 9 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 22, St. Albert the Great Church, Knoxville. For information, call the Office of Christian Formation at 865-584-3307. ■


Tax-changes workshop set for Dec. 14 he Office of Stewardship and Planned Giving is hosting a workshop for pastors, principals, development directors, stewardshipcommittee members, and donors on proposed tax changes. Many of the tax cuts implemented in the last decade are due to expire at the end of 2010. The administration proposes extending the tax cuts to those earning less than $250,000 or (if single) $200,000 while letting cuts expire for those who earn more. Those in the 33 and 35 percent individual tax brackets would see their rates increase to 36 and 39.6 percent, respectively. Another tax change could limit the benefit of itemized deductions. Attorney Richard Buhrman, a parishioner of St. Jude in Chattanooga, will discuss these and other changes during the workshop, set for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 14, at St. Mary Church in Johnson City. A complimentary dinner will be provided. To reserve a seat, contact Maura Lentz at 865-5843307 or The stewardship office has additional workshops planned to discuss ways to increase parish offertory/annual giving and to launch a successful capital campaign. The office also has a number of estate-planning professionals available to speak at parishes and schools wishing to host workshops for alumni, parents, and parishioners. To host a workshop, contact Jim Link, the diocesan director of Stewardship and Planned Giving, at 865-584-3307 or ■



DECEMBER 12, 2010

living the



What will I get for Christmas? Christ may give us not what we wished for but something far better.

Impatience is, perhaps, the human foible most noticeable during the Advent season. For generations, parents have had fun observing their children make lists of what they want for Christmas and beg that most of the items appear under the tree. The unofficial yet consistently observed ritual continues with the parents voicing doubts about whether the kids will get presents. After all, they have to be good. Then the children start doubting they’ll receive what they want—and begin asking every morning how many more days there are until Christmas. During the last

few days parents especially enjoy their children’s nervous anticipation of the moment when they’ll find beautifully wrapped packages to rip open with frantic joy. In some ways John the Baptist acted like a child. He had pointed Jesus out to the world as the one who would give the world peace and justice. He would reward the good and punish the bad. In today’s Gospel we see John in prison, sending his followers to ask Jesus whether he really was the one who would bring God’s ultimate gifts to the world. One of John’s problems was that he wanted bigger and better gifts than he thought Jesus was about to present to the world. John—and all of Israel—longed for the time all their enemies and all evildoers would forever be punished. He hadn’t seen that happening

What’s in a name? All of Jesus’ names set the scene for Christmas.

f a family enjoys a fine reputation, a child born into it automatically has a history to live up to as well as a presumption he or she will accomplish great things. Today the liturgical readings present us with several names


by which Jesus was known even before he was born. The first reading contains two of those names in the same memorable prophecy: “The virgin shall conceive and bear a son and shall name him Emmanuel.”

with Jesus. So the Lord had to convey to John what parents often have to explain to their children during Advent, the most teachable season of the entire year. In effect, Jesus told John: “I know what you want. I know what I’m giving you is not exactly what you envisioned. But what you’re going to receive will be even better. Look, I’m healing people and raising them from the dead. True, I’m performing miracles for such hated folks as Roman centurions and tax collectors. But the real kingdom of God is about loving reconciliation, not revenge.” Thus John and all of us children have come to learn that when Christ comes in power, we will receive a full measure of God’s love and not a hateful punishment. Our gifts may not be what we wished for. They will be far better. ■ Dec. 12, third Sunday of Advent Isaiah 35:1-6, 10 Psalm 146:6-10 James 5:7-10 Matthew 11:2-11

“Son of the virgin” marks Jesus as the product of a miraculous birth. “Emmanuel,” a name that means God is with us, indicates he is divine. Matthew’s Gospel begins with proclaiming Jesus to be Godwith-us and ends with Jesus telling us, “I will be with you all days to the end of the world.” Paul begins his let-

ter to the Romans, our second reading, by describing the Lord with still more names. Jesus is the “Son of God,” established “in power according to the Spirit Readings continued on page 3

Dec. 19, fourth Sunday of Advent Isaiah 7:10-14 Psalm 24:1-6 Romans 1:1-7 Matthew 1:18-24

WEEKDAY READINGS Monday, Dec. 13: Memorial, Lucy, virgin, martyr, Numbers 24:2-7, 1517; Psalm 25:4-9; Matthew 21:23-27 Tuesday, Dec. 14: Memorial, John of the Cross, priest, doctor of the Church, Zephaniah 3:1-2, 9-13; Psalm 34:2-3, 6-7, 17-19, 23; Matthew 21:28-32 Wednesday, Dec. 15: Isaiah 45:68, 18, 21-25; Psalm 85:9-14; Luke 7:18-23 Thursday, Dec. 16: Isaiah 54:1-10; Psalm 30:2, 4-6, 11-13; Luke 7:24-30 Friday, Dec. 17: Genesis 49:2, 8-10; Psalm 72:2-4, 7-8, 17; Matthew 1:1-17

Saturday, Dec. 18: Jeremiah 23:5-8; Psalm 72:1, 12-13, 18-19; Matthew 1:18-25 Monday, Dec. 20: Isaiah 7:10-14; Psalm 24:1-6; Luke 1:26-38 Tuesday, Dec. 21: Song of Songs 2:8-14; Psalm 33:2-3, 11-12, 20-21; Luke 1:39-45 Wednesday, Dec. 22: 1 Samuel 1:24-28; 1 Samuel 2:1, 4-8; Luke 1:46-56 Thursday, Dec. 23: Malachi 3:1-4, 23-24; Psalm 25:4-5, 8-10, 14; Luke 1:57-66 Friday, Dec. 24: 2 Samuel 7:1-5,

8-12, 14, 16; Psalm 89:2-5, 27, 29; Luke 1:67-79; Solemnity, vigil of Christmas, Isaiah 62:1-5; Psalm 89:45, 16-17, 27, 29; Acts 13:16-17, 2225; Matthew 1:1-25 Saturday, Dec. 25: Solemnity, the Nativity of the Lord (Christmas)—midnight, Isaiah 9:1-6; Psalm 96:1-3, 11-13; Titus 2:11-14; Luke 2:1-14; dawn, Isaiah 62:11-12; Psalm 97:1, 6, 11-12; Titus 3:4-7; Luke 2:15-20; day, Isaiah 52:7-10; Psalm 98:1-6; Hebrews 1:1-6; John 1:1-18 ■

Advent penance services scheduled


ere is a list of remaining Advent penance services throughout the Diocese:

Fairfield Glade, 6 p.m. CST; Dec. 15—Blessed Sacrament, Harriman; Dec. 16—Our Lady of Perpetual Help, LaFollette; Dec. 18—St. Christopher, Jamestown, 6 p.m. CST.

Five Rivers Deanery 7 p.m. Dec. 13—St. Dominic, Kingsport; Dec. 15—Holy Trinity, Jefferson City; Dec. 16— St. Henry, Rogersville; Dec. 19—Notre Dame, Greeneville; TBA—St. Anthony of Padua, Mountain City

Chattanooga Deanery 7 p.m. EST, except as noted. Dec. 13—Holy Spirit, SoddyDaisy; Dec. 14—Our Lady of Lourdes, South Pittsburg, 6:30 p.m. CST; St. Jude, Chattanooga; Dec. 15—St. Bridget, Dayton, 6:30 p.m.; Dec. 16—St. Thérèse of Lisieux, Cleveland; Dec. 17—St. Mary, Athens; Dec. 21—St. Stephen,

Cumberland Mountain Deanery 7 p.m. EST, except as noted. Dec. 13—All Saints, Knoxville; Dec. 14—St. Francis of Assisi,

Smoky Mountain Deanery 7 p.m. Dec. 13—Holy Family, Seymour; Dec. 14—Our Lady of Fatima, Alcoa; Dec. 15—St. Joseph the Worker, Madisonville; Dec. 16—St. Mary, Gatlinburg; Dec. 21—St. Francis of Assisi, Townsend ■

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


805 Northshore Drive S.W .

Chattanooga (At St. Catherine Labouré in Copperhill, confession will be available after the 9 a.m. Mass on Fridays, from 4:15 to 5:15 p.m. Saturdays, and from 8:15 to 8:45 a.m. Sundays.)

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.d


he dwells



Come and follow Answering God’s call is full of surprises and above all, blessings.

It was cold outside but warm inside. That might sound more like the beginning of a Christmas tale than a story of the beginning of one’s vocation. But either one is the story of the gift of God—of Christ Jesus—who defines every vocation. A gift can contain many surprises, and so can every vocation. It was only 5 degrees outside the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis on Dec. 14, 1985, when I was ordained to the priesthood by Archbishop John May. The cold weather was one of those odd details I still remember concerning the greatest day of my life—the day I said yes to God and fully embraced his calling for me in life. Despite the freezing cold, I couldn’t have felt warmer in my heart, knowing that with God’s grace I was answering a call that others had helped me hear and discern. Little did I know then, much less earlier in my life, where God would take me once I said yes. I am not unique, nor are our priests and religious, in receiving a call from God. In fact, he calls all of us to a specific vocation in life. Unfortunately, today many of us have lost the sense of vocation and the prayer needed in order to discern the special gift God wishes to give each of us. So many people now confuse vocation with one’s profession. But a vocation—to the priesthood, the deaconate, religious life, or the married or single state—is so much more. It is a mystery. It is a call from God, and it is his choice. It comes from him and is his gift. God also desires to give this gift to us through the Church, and there it grows and is fulfilled. I have to admit that I might not have recognized God’s call if not for the prayers, example, and wisdom of a number of people in my life. To these and many others I am eternally indebted. I think every vocation is first influenced by the environment of the home. Certainly the strong witness of parents in a loving and committed marriage does much to teach children about sacrificial love, the heart of every vocation. For those who feel a calling to the priesthood or religious life, the example of their parents’ love for each other offers a beautiful

image of the heavenly bridegroom’s love for the Church and the bride’s love for Christ. I am so grateful to my parents, Frank and Helen, as well as to my brothers, Bob, Larry, and Joseph, for their special role in preparing me for my vocation as a priest. I am also very grateful for the example and joy of the priests who were such a part of my faith journey in life. I am particularly grateful to Monsignor Lloyd Sullivan and Father William Scheid, the parish priests of my youth at Epiphany of Our Lord, where I also went to school. What first struck me about them was their joy in living their priestly vocation. Joy is such a great evangelizer and the best vocation director. It was Monsignor Sullivan who helped me commit to my calling and to begin my seminary training, all within the span of two weeks. Another priest who has been instrumental in my journey is Bishop Robert Shaheen of the Maronite Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon, based in St. Louis. When I was a youth and a college student, then–Father Shaheen employed me at St. Raymond Maronite Catholic Parish, of which he was pastor at the time. He hired me to mow the lawn and to do a wide variety of tasks in the parish. One of his great gifts to me was helping me better appreciate the rich tradition of the Eastern Rites of the Catholic Church, to which the Maronite (Lebanese) Church belongs. He is the reason I have bi-ritual faculties to celebrate Masses for Maronite Catholics. He was a co-consecrator, with Cardinal Justin Rigali as my principal consecrator, at my ordination and installation as bishop. I figured anybody who fired me and rehired me no less than six times should also help ordain me. Here, I wish to recall the memory of a dear friend who I believe to be numbered among the saints: Archbishop Francis Mansour Zayek. He was the bishop of then–Father Shaheen and was the founding bishop of the Maronite diocese in the United States. He was the first person I told that I felt called to the priesthood, and I credit his wise counsel and prayers for helping me to better follow God’s call—as a layperson, a priest, and a bishop. Even with his recent passing, I continue to call upon him for his prayers and his help. I also wish to recall the

memory not only of Archbishop May, who ordained me a priest, but also Cardinal John Joseph Carberry, Archbishop Emeritus of St. Louis, who ordained me a deacon on May 1, 1985. That was the feast of St. Joseph the Worker, to whom I have a great devotion. Cardinal Carberry, through his example, also gave me a deep love for Our Blessed Mother. I now have his pectoral cross as a wonderful reminder of his service to Christ and his Church. Many people have helped me better live out my priestly vocation. One was my first pastor, Monsignor Thomas Woracek, who taught me much as a young associate pastor. But one of the wonderful surprises of answering God’s call was working for Cardinal Rigali while he was archbishop of St. Louis. I learned so much from him and am so indebted to his wise counsel and mentoring as a priest and bishop. In the same year I was ordained a priest on the feast of St. John of the Cross, Cardinal Rigali was ordained a bishop on the feast of the Triumph of the Cross (Sept. 14, 1985). As I celebrate my silver jubilee, I honor the golden jubilee of a priest, mentor, and friend who has taught me so much about the cross of Christ. Many of you have heard the joke that if you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans for the future. This is one of the reasons I chose “Jesus, I trust in you” as my episcopal motto. I think God might still be laughing about the plans I envisioned for myself when I first answered his call to the priesthood. All I can say is that I am so grateful he has been the one calling the shots in my vocation. As I experience the joy of my silver jubilee, I am so very grateful to the many who have inspired me by living their own vocation in a perpetual jubilee of joy. They have helped me recognize “his star” rising before me so I might “worship him” faithfully each day (Matthew 2:2). Every vocation is a gift and a mystery. Don’t be afraid of the “tidings of great joy” that God offers each of us, called by name (Isaiah 45:3). ■ B IS H O P S TIK A ’ S S C H E D U L E These are some of Bishop Stika’s appointments: Dec. 14: Papal Foundation board meeting, Washington, D.C. Dec. 16: 6 p.m., Advent family Mass, St. Mary Church, Oak Ridge Dec. 19: 3 p.m., jubilee Mass for vocations, Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Dec. 24: 4 p.m., Mass, St. Francis of Assisi Church, Townsend Dec. 25: Midnight Mass, Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus ■

New principal named for Knoxville’s St. Joseph School n Dec. 3 Monsignor Xavier Mankel, pastor of Holy Ghost Parish in Knoxville, announced that he has appointed sister Elizabeth Ann McCullough, RSM, the principal of St. Joseph School, effective June 1, 2011. Dr. Aurelia Montgomery has served as principal of the North Knoxville school since 2005. She will retire on June 1. In a memo communicating the news, Bishop Richard F. Stika wrote, “Dr. Montgomery has been a champion in providing a holy and spiritually rich atmosphere for the children of St. Joseph. I believe Sr. Elizabeth Ann will continue Dr. Montgomery’s great service and will be filled with great joy as she begins this new assignment.” ■


Ministries Day set for Jan. 8 inistries Day 2011 will be held Saturday, Jan. 8, at Sacred Heart Cathedral School in Knoxville, with more than 30 sessions to choose from. The day begins at 8:30 a.m., with an opportunity for participants to visit vendors and publishers and enjoy coffee and doughnuts—or attend an optional Mass at the cathedral at 8:05—and ends at 3:30 p.m. Titled “Answering Our Baptismal Call,” the event is open to all adults in the diocese and is especially tailored to the needs of parents, student youth leaders, youth ministers, RCIA teams, adult educators, liturgy and ministry teams, directors of religious education, and catechists. Attendees may select two morning and two afternoon sessions from 24 offerings conducted in English and eight in Spanish—or they can register for one two-hour adult faith-formation workshop in the morning and/or one in the afternoon. Lunch will be served at noon, with a presentation by Bishop Richard F. Stika. Cost of the day is $15 (including a box lunch) for those who register by Dec. 10; $20 (with lunch) through Dec. 30; and $20 (no lunch) after Dec. 30. Checks should be made payable to the Diocese of Knoxville and mailed to Diocese of Knoxville, Attn: Father Richard Armstrong, Office of Christian Formation, 805 Northshore Drive Southwest, Knoxville, TN 37919-7551. Courses cover topics such as the new Roman Missal, young-adult ministry and Scripture, devotion to Mary, Gregorian chant, the liturgy, Eastern Catholic prayer, apologetics, mission trips, Catholic social teachings, and forming teen disciples. For more information, visit, from which users can download a registration form, schedule, and complete course details—or contact Father Armstrong at 865-584-3307 or ■


Readings continued from page 2

of holiness through resurrection from the dead.” That is, he is God from God. Simultaneously, he is also descended from David, the king. Remember, Paul is writing to Romans who are quite familiar with emperors and their families and who have lived under the powerful shadow vested in those family names. Paul adds a major difference. Those of us who belong to Jesus by means of his grace actually share in the holiness and power of his name. Matthew’s Gospel presents us with still more names for the one whose birth we will soon celebrate. He is the “Son of Mary.” She is not only the virgin predicted in Isaiah’s prophecy but also the woman signified in the first chapter of Genesis, whose son would crush the head of the serpent, the symbol of evil. Matthew also calls the Lord the “Son of Joseph.” Many in Jesus’ time called him the “Son of the carpenter.” But Matthew’s point is that because Joseph is a descendant of David, Jesus is “Son of David,” a legitimate heir to the throne of Israel. He truly is a king. Finally comes the name “Jesus.” He saves us from our sins. All these names set the scene for Christmas. The child born of Mary is human and divine. Through him we can enter eternal life. ■ Father Brando is pastor of St. Mary Parish in Gatlinburg.


The good we do lives after us— when we remember to make a will.

Religious-education building, Holy Family statue dedicated for St. Joseph Parish Bishop Richard F. Stika blesses a new statue on the grounds of St. Joseph Church in Norris on Nov. 21 as pastor Father Bill Gahagan (left) and Deacon Sean Smith look on. After celebrating Mass in the church, the bishop blessed the Holy Family figures as well as a house on the St. Joseph campus that now serves as a religious-education center. TH E E A S T TE N N E S S E E C A T H OL IC


Only you can divide your own property as you want it divided. A bequest to your church can be a living memorial to the nobility of your life. DECEMBER 12, 2010



with Catholic Charities of East Tennessee, spoke to students Dec. 6 about CCET’s “giving tree.” Parishioners can learn how they may help seven families this year by taking their names off the tree, located in Holy Family Hall. ■ Cindy Storey and Jessica Heffern will offer “Christmas Elves” cooking classes for first- through fourth-grade students from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturdays, Dec. 11 and 18. Cost for each class is $50. Registration forms may be found in the back of the church. ■ Margaret Coles recently earned the Girl Scouts’ Bronze Award. Her northwest Georgia troop adopted the residents of Peachtree Estates assisted-living center in Dalton, Ga. The girls made Valentine’s cards and Easter baskets and organized game days for the residents.

St. Catherine Labouré, Copperhill ■ The angel tree will be up by Satur-

day, Dec. 11. The ornaments will list the wishes and needs of area children. For more information, call Del Pierman at 423-496-4165. ■ The Six Dates for Catholic Couples program will come to St. Catherine Labouré in January. Married couples will meet on selected Friday evenings in January, February, and March and view a 10-minute video, then go out on a date. For more details, contact Kathy or Dave Ross at 828-494-3838 or ■ Knights of Columbus Council 12126 in Blue Ridge, Ga., which has a St. Catherine round table, will hold a raffle next month to benefit two Georgia state Knights charities: GraceWay Recovery Residence in Albany, Ga., and a pregnancy resource center. Half of the proceeds will also benefit two Council 12126 charities, the St. Vincent de Paul and Divine Mercy societies. Tickets are $5 each or $20 for five. The drawing will be held Sunday, Jan. 16. Contact Mr. Ross (see above) for details.

St. Jude, Chattanooga ■ The parish marked the 21st annual National Night of Prayer for Life by praying before the Blessed Sacrament for four hours Dec. 8 and 9. ■ An eight-week Catholic-based grief-support program, Harvesting Our Tears, will be presented by parishioner Loraine Torrence on Wednesday evenings in January and February in the parish life center. The fee for materials is $10. Call Kyra at 423-8702386 to register or learn more. ■ Individuals and groups are needed to provide packaged, individually portioned snacks and drop them off Wednesday mornings during 2011 at the Memorial Hospital emergency room. The snacks are placed in a St. Jude basket for parishioners in the ER waiting room. Call Claire Homar at 875-2481 to volunteer.

St. Mary, Athens ■ The parish will hold a 13-week

Dave Ramsey Financial Peace course at 6:30 p.m. Thursdays, Jan. 20 through April 14. A preview meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 6. The first lesson Jan. 20 is free; for those who continue, the cost will be about $100, including materials. E-mail jcoxjr53@ for more information.

St. Thérèse of Lisieux, Cleveland ■ The parish was among the top 10 churches and schools that raised funds for the New Hope Pregnancy Center through its annual Walk for Life. The Sept. 18 event drew more than $66,000 in pledges, and the St. Thérèse team collected $2,960.

Sts. Peter and Paul, Chattanooga ■ The parish Christmas dinner will be held at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 12, in the newly completed parish hall. Registration forms are in the vestibule. Cumberland Mountain Deanery

All Saints, Knoxville ■ The parish will observe the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe with a procession at 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 12, followed by Mass and a celebration in the parish hall afterward. ■ The men’s ministry will sponsor a “Breakfast With Ol’ St. Nicholas” from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 18, in the parish hall. A free breakfast of 4

DECEMBER 12, 2010

Blessed Sacrament, Harriman ■ The Council of Catholic Women is accepting donations of $12 for memorial poinsettias to decorate the altar and Church during the Christmas season. Place donations in the collection basket with the names of those you wish to be remembered. ■ Canned food, sugar, flour, meal, macaroni, cake mixes, peanut butter, crackers, jelly, spaghetti and sauce, and other nonperishable items are requested for Christmas baskets benefiting the needy of Roane County. Mark donations for “Christmas baskets” and place them in Blessed Sacrament Hall. They will be distributed from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Dec. 21.

St. Francis of Assisi, Fairfield Glade ■ The parish recently bid farewell to John and Ronnie Flanagan, who had been members since 1998. The Flanagans were active in the parish’s Tender Loving Care ministry as well as Renew: Why Catholic?, Bible study, the men’s prayer group, and the worship and liturgy committee. ■ Anniversaries: Max and Peggy Wigner (55), Frank and Juliana Simonds (54), Ron and Mary White (52), Keith and Helen Comstock (20)


■ Christina Call, a case coordinator

Christ the King CCD program helps Operation Christmas Child CCD students and staff at Christ the King Parish in Tazewell participated in this year’s Operation Christmas Child program. The youth and adults filled and wrapped 33 shoeboxes with toys, candy, and other items for needy children around the world. The CCD program thanked those who donated items for the boxes or money toward shipping and helped make the project a success.

St. John Neumann, Farragut ■ A reception was held Dec. 5 for

Deacons Don Amelse and Mark Syler in honor of the 25th anniversary of their ordination to the diaconate. Both were ordained Nov. 30, 1985. ■ A potluck supper to mark the ninth anniversary of the parish’s perpetual Eucharistic adoration and the 200th anniversary of St. John Neumann’s birth will begin after the 6 p.m. Mass on Wednesday, Jan. 5, and continue in the cafeteria with an international dinner. Parishioners are asked to bring a favorite dish from their ancestors’ countries or holiday leftovers. ■ The high school youth group will sponsor “Breakfast With Santa” at 9:30 and 11 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 19. Cost is $5 per person or $25 per family. Pictures may be taken with Santa after breakfast.


OLPH, Chattanooga

pancakes and sausage will be served. A professional photographer will be available.

Holy Family youth dress up as favorite saints Father Ragan Schriver, pastor of Holy Family in Seymour, and teachers Bill Voight and Karen Quilliams stand with CCD students on Oct. 31 as they wear the costumes and accouterments of their favorite saints. Students also wrote and presented a report as part of a project that enabled them to learn more about the saints and to share what they discovered with the parish.

St. Mary, Oak Ridge ■ St. Mary hosted an ecumenical prayer service Nov. 20 with ministers and choirs from Spurgeon Chapel AME Zion Church, First United Methodist Church, and St. Mary participating.

St. Thomas the Apostle, Lenoir City

Detective speaks to CCW on Internet safety Fifteen members of the Council of Catholic Women at Notre Dame Church in Greeneville met in the parish hall Oct. 23. The guest speaker was Detective Mike Fincher of the Greene County Sheriff’s Office. Mr. Fincher spoke on Internet and cellphone safety for children and adults. At left, council president Denise Michaud presents Mr. Fincher with a certificate of appreciation.

■ Deacon Dave Pecot will present a

free “Alpha” course in discipleship Monday evenings Jan. 10 through Feb. 28. Call Jill at 865-986-9885 or Deacon Pecot at 458-9628 for registration information. Five Rivers Deanery

Holy Trinity, Jefferson City ■ The Knights of Columbus are asking parishioners to help it support Heifer International during Advent. The organization helps poor families become self-reliant through donations of food and income-producing animals.

St. Dominic, Kingsport ■ The Lunch Bunch will see Intercity

Ballet’s performance of the Nutcracker at 9:30 a.m. Friday, Dec. 10. Lunch will follow at Giuseppe’s. ■ Volunteers are needed to help with transporting angel-tree gifts for children from Kingsport Housing Authority on Friday, Dec. 10, and with a party for the children Saturday, Dec. 11. Call Chris Terry at 423-239-8744.

St. Patrick, Morristown ■ The parish youth are again sponsor-

ing an angel tree to help needy children in the community. Those taking an “angel” from the tree should return an unwrapped present (with the angel attached) to the narthex by Friday, Dec. 17. Call Kathy DeAngelis at 423585-0191 for more information. ■ St. Patrick hosted an auction, a luncheon, and a sale Dec. 8 to benefit Friends of Hospice Serenity Comfort Home. ■ The Knights of Columbus have acquired cemetery plots in Hamblen Memory Gardens from the estate of Tom and Helen Sutherland. The Parish notes continued on page 5


Chattanooga Deanery

St. Mary in Athens holds annual Thanksgiving lunch for seniors The annual Seniors Thanksgiving Luncheon at St. Mary Church in Athens was a big success, with nearly 80 people in attendance. The parish thanked Priscille Stuckey for her efforts in organizing the event and the many other parishioners who assisted.

Fairfield Glade parishioners celebrate 50th anniversary


ichard and Virginia Murphy of St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Fairfield Glade celebrated their 60th anniversary recently with family and friends in Michigan. They were married Oct. 14, 1950, at St. Matthew Church in Detroit with Father John Harris officiating. The Murphys have eight children, Kathy Murphy of Minne-






Mr. and Mrs. Murphy

sota; Sharon Ozark of Grosse Pointe, Mich.; Colleen Dowd of St. Clair, Mich.; Richard

Murphy of White Lake, Mich.; Maureen Lechner of Grosse Pointe; Jeanne Murphy of Fraser, Mich.; Bob Murphy of Clinton Township, Mich.; and Tom Murphy of Royal Oak, Mich.; 21 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild. They retired from Murphy Modernization Company in St. Clair Shores, Mich., and moved to the Glade in 1995. ■


The next diocesan Colombia youth mission trip is scheduled for the second and third weeks of June 2011 (exact dates TBA). Father Antonio Giraldo will lead the mission. Mandatory meetings for those interested are set for 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 9, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 6, both at St. Thérèse of Lisieux Church in Cleveland. Those attending must be age 16 or older, have a written letter of reference from a youth minister and/or pastor, and write a personal essay stating their reason for wishing to participate. Virtus-trained adults are welcome to travel with the group as well. Maximum group size is 22. Cost is $1,500. A $500 deposit will be due at the Feb. 6 meeting. For more information, call the St. Thérèse office at 423-476-8123. For the second year in a row, Bishop Richard F. Stika will host three bilingual celebrations to honor married couples and their commitment to the sacrament of marriage. Each event will include Mass, an opportunity to renew wedding vows, and a luncheon for couples and their family and friends following the liturgy. The first celebration will begin at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 15, at Our Lady of Fatima Church in Alcoa. The second is set for 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 5, at St. Patrick Church in Morristown and the third at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 12, at St. Thérèse of Lisieux Church in Cleveland. A commemorative certificate will be available at the luncheons for couples who pre-registered. To attend one of the celebrations, RSVP to Karen Byrne of the diocesan Office of Marriage Preparation and Enrichment at 865-584-3307, extension 5739, or Couples should provide their names, number of years married, and number of guests coming to the luncheon. The Ladies of Charity of Knoxville’s annual Christmas party is set for Friday, Dec. 10, at Holy Ghost Church in Knoxville. A rosary at 9:30 a.m. and Mass at 10 will be followed by lunch in Father Henkel Hall downstairs. Bring a covered dish and a donation of personal-care items for the Ladies’ food-pantry clients. For more details, call Karen at 865-579-9196. The Ladies of Charity of Chattanooga are seeking financial support for their annual Christmas Angel Project. The project allows the Ladies to provide needy families financial assistance as well as groceries and holiday gifts for children. Christmas Angel donors last year helped more than 200 individuals. Send contributions by Friday, Dec. 10, to Ladies of Charity, 2821 Rossville Blvd., Chattanooga, TN 37407. The Sevier County chapter of Tennessee Right to Life will hold its sixth annual march and rally, with the theme “God’s Mercy for All,” on Sunday, Jan. 9. The march will begin at 1 p.m. at the Pigeon Forge Community Center and proceed down the Parkway to the Country Tonite Theater. The rally will take place from 2 to 3 p.m. and include song and dance routines performed by For Zion’s Sake, Voice of Mercy, and Unhidden and a talk by Debbie Picarello. For more information, contact Karen Mercer at 865-908-2417 or smercer@ or Louis Kahl at 3845441 or The next “Picture of Love” engagedcouples retreat will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday, Feb. 18, and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 19, in the parish life center at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in Chattanooga. This marriage-preparation retreat supplements couples’ marriage formation with their parish priest and is designed to help couples gain a better understanding of the joys and challenges of living the sacrament of matrimony. Cost is $135 per couple and includes meals. The retreat certificate, for those attending the entire event, is good for a $60 discount on a marriage license. To register or learn more, contact Marian Christiana of the diocesan Office of Marriage Preparation and Enrichment at 423892-2310 or Another Picture of Love retreat will be held at St. Stephen Church in Chattanooga on June 3 and 4. Sacred Heart Cathedral School is now accepting new-student applicaTH E E A S T TE N N E S S E E C A T H OL IC

Signal Mountain Knights receive Double Star Award


tions for the 2011-12 school year. To learn more or schedule a school tour and pick up application materials, contact Joni Punch at 865-558-4136 or The Sacred Heart Cathedral School Faith, Family, Food cookbook is available at the SHCS front office, the parish office, and The Paraclete bookstore. Cost is $15. To order a copy or obtain more information, e-mail Memorial Health Care System in Chattanooga is holding a class for registered nurses who wish to participate in its Faith Community Nursing program. The class is divided into six sessions, all of which must be completed in order to participate in the program. Three eight-hour days are scheduled for 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesdays, Feb. 2, 9, and 16. Sessions also will be held from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays, March 1, 15, and 29. A commissioning/graduation ceremony will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 5. Registration deadline is Thursday, Jan. 20. For more information about the program or tuition costs, contact FCN coordinator Connie Blake at 423-495-6163 or connie_blake@ Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, a 2008 presidential candidate, will speak at a dinner scheduled for 7 to 9 p.m. Monday, Feb. 14, at the Knoxville Convention Center. The dinner, also featuring Christian comedian Mike Williams, is sponsored by ProLife on Campus, a ministry of the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform. Tickets are $75. Quantity discounts and table sponsorships are available. Dinner sponsors may meet Mr. Huckabee and Mr. Williams at a reception at 6 p.m. For more information, visit knoxvillehuckabee or call 800-521-6692.


nights of Columbus James R. Hedges Council 14521 in Signal Mountain recently earned the distinction of Double Star Council for the 2009-10 fraternal year. The organization’s headquarters in New Haven, Conn., made the announcement. The award recognizes overall excellence in the areas of membership recruitment (reaching 200 percent of quota, thereby making it a “double star”) and retention, promotion of the fraternal insurance program, and sponsorship of service-oriented activities. The award was presented to the membership by Wesley Bell, past district deputy, at a ceremony Oct. 19 at St. Augustine Church in Signal Mountain. In announcing the local winner of the Double Star Council Award, Supreme Knight Carl Anderson said, “Please accept my sincere congratulations upon attaining this prestigious award. Your dedication to the order is seen in the high standard of excellence you have achieved. At the same



Past district deputy Wesley Bell (right) presents the Double Star Award to Council 14521 Grand Knight Tony Neuhoff.


time, I encourage you to carry forward this enthusiasm to meet the challenges that will face the Knights of Columbus in the years ahead. May this award be a reminder and an inspiration to the members of your council to continue to promote the ideals of Columbianism for the good of the Church, your community, and the order.” “Receiving the Double Star Council Award is quite an honor for us. We’re extremely proud of this accomplishment and the leadership

of Tom Tidwell, our past Grand Knight,” said Tony Neuhoff, Council 14521 Grand Knight. Only 398 Double Star awards were achieved by councils throughout the United States in 2009-10, with five of those won by Tennessee councils. The other four were Father John A. Nolan Council 3537 in Clarksville, W.P. Morris Council 6645 in Cookeville, Pope St. Pius V Council 14041 in Bartlett, and St. Philip the Apostle Council 14482 in Somerville. ■

High school juniors and seniors in the Chattanooga Deanery are invited to attend upcoming Search for Christian Maturity retreats at the All Saints Academy building near Sts. Peter and Paul Church in Chattanooga. Search 132 is set for Feb. 25 through 27 and Search 133 for March 25 through 27. Cost is $55, and scholarships are available. To obtain a form, see a youth minister, visit the Notre Dame High School office, or contact Donna Jones at 423-718-4387 or Worldwide Marriage Encounter is searching for the longest-married couple in the United States and is accepting applications through Monday, Jan. 10. The couple will receive special gifts Feb. 14, and individual state winners will receive a certificate of achievement from the WWME movement. Couples nominated may be from any faith tradition. To nominate a couple, send their name and wedding date, where they live, and their phone number or e-mail to Dick and Diane Baumbach, 1430 Scorpious Court, Merritt Island, FL 32953. E-mail or call in nominations to dickanddiane66@bellsouth. net or 321-453-2475.


on the

East Tennessee educators attend Mid-South conference Diocese of Knoxville catechists, directors of religious education, and school personnel recently gathered at the Mid-South Catholic Leadership Conference at Lake Barkley State Resort Park in Cadiz, Ky. From left are (front) Joan Turbyville of Blessed Sacrament Parish in Harriman, Sara Carey of St. Alphonsus in Crossville, and Father Richard Armstrong of the diocesan Office of Christian Formation and wife Emily; (middle) Jerry Turbyville of Blessed Sacrament, Brigid Johnson of Sacred Heart Cathedral, Randy Carey of St. Alphonsus, and Karen Wilkins-Butz of St. Mary in Oak Ridge; and (back) Kathleen Quinn and Ruth Campbell, both of St. Mary in Oak Ridge. Not pictured are Jill St. Yves of St. Thomas the Apostle in Lenoir City; Peggy Long of All Saints in Knoxville; Dr. Sherry Morgan, diocesan superintendent of Catholic Schools; and Louise Thompson of Our Lady of Fatima in Alcoa.

Parish notes continued from page 4

The 2011 National Catholic Youth Choir is accepting applications for its June 14 through 28 camp and tour at St. John’s Abbey and University in Collegeville, Minn. Students entering grades 10 through 12 in fall 2011 are eligible to apply. Cost is $900 and includes tour expenses (scholarships available). Apply online at by Monday, March 7. Contact Dorothy Kantor at 320-363-3154 or dkantor@ for more information. A Journey of Hope Conference for divorced and separated Catholics will be held on the weekend of March 4 through 6 at the Atlanta Marriott Northwest. Speakers include Father Thomas Williams, LC, a professor of theology and ethics at the Regina Apostolorum Pontifical Antheneum in Rome; EWTN host Johnette Benkovic; Yvonne Marchese, executive director of Catholics Come Home; and Father Tony Palazzolo, pastoral consultant for the Diocese of St. Augustine, Fla. Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory of Atlanta will celebrate Mass. Visit www.journeyofhopeconference. com to register or learn more. Calendar continued on page 6

plots will be offered to parishioners at a substantial discount. Call Brian Steisslinger at 423-587-5298 or Frank Dubey 585-0458. Smoky Mountain Deanery

Blessed John XXIII, Knoxville ■ The “Roncalli Roundtable” Christ-

mas lasagna lunch for faculty and staff will be served from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 13. RSVP to 865-523-7931 or

Immaculate Conception, Knoxville ■ The parish will hold “An Advent

Afternoon at IC” from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 11, in which participants can sing traditional hymns and focus on the fundamental meaning of Advent. The day will end with exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, evening prayer, reflections from servant of God Isaac Hecker, and benediction. ■ IC’s giving tree has decorations representing several events and organizations parishioners may support, including a Central United Methodist Church dinner for those who are alone at Christmastime and Catholic Charities’ Samaritan Place. Grocery-store


gift cards and store gift certificates are also on the tree. Bring gifts to the church by Sunday, Dec. 19. ■ The youth ministry thanked parishioners for donating 200 pairs of eye glasses and cases for Lions Club International and for contributing $300 to an Advent candle and bake sale. The sale proceeds helped the youth fill stockings for 20 clients of the Salvation Army, twice the number they helped last year. ■ The parish will participate in the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign by volunteering to help during the 10 to 11 a.m. and 11 a.m. to noon shifts Saturday, Dec. 11; Tuesday, Dec. 14; Thursday, Dec. 16; and Saturday, Dec. 18. Call Pat Wade at 865-539-5314. ■ The women’s guild’s craft fair Nov. 13 and 14 raised more than $3,000.

Our Lady of Fatima, Alcoa ■ Volunteers are needed for the

Blount County Family Promise program to help the needy. Call Peter O’Neill at 865-556-5293 or 983-0821. ■ The Community Food Connection thanked parishioners for their donations during October, which helped feed 5,197 people in 1,710 families. ■ DECEMBER 12, 2010


Mercy Health talks to partner with UT Medical fail; system may have to sell ‘some or all facilities’ fter recent negotiations to form a joint venture with the University of Tennessee Medical Center failed, Mercy Health Partners announced last month that it may have to sell its facilities, and Bishop Richard F. Stika said he hoped the organization founded in 1930 could remain in Catholic hands. Mercy CEO David Jimenez e-mailed the news to employees Nov. 18, and Bishop Stika issued a statement to the media that evening. “I extend my continued support for Mercy’s leadership, staff, and highly trained physicians, nurses, and technicians,” said the bishop in his statement. “For more than 80 years the Mercy family has been continuing the healing ministry of Jesus by improving the health of our community—with a special emphasis on those who are poor and underserved. “It is my sincere hope that Mercy Health Partners will be able to achieve a solution to its current challenges that will allow it to maintain its Catholic identity. I offer my prayers and support for the Mercy leadership team as it seeks organizations that respect its mission and core values.” Jeff Ashin, chief operating officer of Mercy’s Metro Division and president of Mercy St. Mary’s, will succeed Mr. Jimenez as CEO upon the latter’s retirement Dec. 15. Mr. Jimenez had announced in August that Mercy and UT “had entered into discussions regarding the potential for our working together to improve quality and efficiency in the delivery of health-care services throughout the region.” At a meeting Nov. 18 he told the Mercy Health Partners board “that these discussions have not resulted in an agreement to proceed with the current proposal. All of us here at Mercy appreciate UTMC’s willingness to join us in taking a fresh look at how we might work together on behalf of our community, and we remain open to future discussions with UT should additional opportunities emerge.” The Mercy board “has authorized us to issue a request for proposals from other prospective joint-venture partners and/or buyers for some or all of MHP’s facilities,” Mr. Jimenez said in the e-mail. “The board felt that this action was prudent now because Mercy Health Partners is very strong operationally, delivering high levels of efficiency, quality, and patient satisfaction, thus making us an attractive partner. Despite our outstanding operational performance, however, as we look to the future we will continue to need an infusion of additional capital in order to reduce the operational impact of our debt load and thus enable us to invest in the growth of our facilities, service lines, programs, and people.” In considering “potential partners or purchasers,” Mr. Jimenez told employees, “I want to assure you that we will use a set of guiding principles to assess our prospective partners’ or purchasers’ commitments to the fundamentals of our ministry. These principles include our desire to work only with organizations that respect our mission and core values; are willing to consider significant ways we can creatively maintain and build upon the legacy of our founders; and share our commitment to investing in our service lines, programs, facilities, and people. “While we cannot guarantee that a partner or purchaser will agree to all of these principles, our goals will be to assure that the principles for which we have stood over the last 80 years will continue, even if in a new form, and that the interests of our associates are protected to the greatest degree possible.” ■

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Calendar continued from page 5

The December calendar for Memorial Health Care System includes a “For Your Health, for Your Life” vascular-screening event Wednesday, Dec. 15, at the Memorial Ooltewah Imaging Center, 6401 Mountain View Road in Ooltewah. Ultrasound exams of the carotid artery and abdominal aorta, as well as a measurement of circulation in the legs, will be provided. To make an appointment or find out whether you are eligible for screening, call 423-495-CARE (2273) weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Seniors may call the same number to learn about an AARP driver-safety program set for Friday, Dec. 17. Cancer, heart, and diabetes patients should call 495-7778, 495-7764, or 495-7970, respectively, to learn more about specific events. Alexian Brothers Senior Ministries has numerous events planned in coming weeks. Three events are set for Tuesday, Dec. 14. The Soddy Elementary School choir will perform at 10 a.m. at Alexian Brothers Senior Neighbors, 190 Depot St. in SoddyDaisy. Call 423-332-1702 to learn more. The Senior Neighbors Orchestra will perform a free Christmas concert at 11 a.m. at White Oak Baptist Church, 310 Memorial Drive in Red Bank. A workshop for veterans and their spouses, which will explain how they may qualify for a tax-free monthly pension to offset the cost of long-term care, will be held at 5 p.m. at the Alexian Inn, 100 James Blvd. in Signal Mountain. Call 886-0542 for more details. The Senior Neighbors Christmas open house will take place from 9 to Calendar continued on page 7


DECEMBER 12, 2010



Deacon Sean Smith, diocesan chancellor, assists then–Deacon Moises Moreno a few minutes before the latter’s Mass of priestly ordination.


The ordinand’s first assignment as associate pastor will be close by: St. Jude Parish in Chattanooga. During his homily for the ordination Mass, Bishop Stika recalled that when Pope John Paul II was elected pope in 1978, he told the people assembled in St. Peter’s Square “that they had chosen a man from a faraway place to come to Rome.” “I am very grateful to God that I have been able to ordain a man from a faraway place, a man of faith, for service in East Tennessee,” he said. The new priest brings to Tennessee “beautiful blessings and traditions from the people of Mexico,” said Bishop Stika. Father Moreno, 40, became a seminarian of the Diocese of Knoxville in 2006, but he first began preparation for the priesthood back home in Mexico. He left the seminary, but his friend Father Manuel Pérez, a native of Mexico who now serves as associate pastor of Sacred Heart Cathedral, encouraged him to resume his studies. Father Pérez was ordained in 2005. Bishop Stika expressed special thanks to the new priest’s mother and father, Antonia Urzua and J. Guadalupe Moreno, “for giving him their example of faith and love.” Father Moreno, the bishop said, “now

will begin his ministry as a priest of Jesus Christ. In the name and with the face and the voice of Jesus, he will bless the people of God; he will reconcile sinners; he will proclaim the Gospels and live them; he will take into his hands the bread and wine and give the good people of God the precious body and

blood of Jesus.” Several clergymen from East Tennessee took part in the Mass: Father Michael Cummins, diocesan director of Vocations; Deacon Sean Smith, diocesan chancellor; Father Randy Stice, diocesan director of Worship and Liturgy; Father Pérez; Father Alex Waraksa, associate pastor of St. Pat-

rick in Morristown; and Father P. J. McGinnity, pastor of St. Joseph the Worker in Madisonville. Also taking part were Father James Tucker, SS, director of Spiritual Life for Assumption Seminary in San Antonio, where Father Moreno completed his seminary studies, and sevMoreno continued on page 7

Father Moreno’s father, J. Guadalupe Moreno, and mother, Antonia Urzua, carried their son’s vestments in the entrance processional.

Father Manuel Pérez (right) vests his friend Father Moreno while the ordinand’s parents look on. In the background, at left, is Father Michael Cummins, diocesan director of the Vocations Office. www.d




Annual ‘It’s Cool 2B Catholic’ youth rally includes rosary, Mass, music


he annual “It’s Cool 2B Catholic” diocesan youth rally, which has a focus on Catholic social teaching, is set for Saturday, Jan. 15. Youth will meet

at 10 a.m. at the abortion clinic on Concord Street in Knoxville to pray the rosary with Bishop Richard F. Stika, then proceed to St. John Neumann Church in

Farragut for games and activities, keynote talks, Mass, and a concert. Sal Solo and MashetiMoses will speak and perform. The events will conclude

around 8:45. Cost is $25. For more information, call the diocesan Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry at 865-862-5754 or visit ■

Two free Christmas concerts scheduled in Chattanooga area he Roueché Chorale & Symphony Orchestra will present its 11th annual Chattanooga Candlelight Service of Lessons and Carols at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 12. The free concert will be hosted by the Collegedale Church of SeventhDay Adventists, 4829 College Drive East, Collegedale, TN 37315. The chorale’s founder and artistic director is Jeff Roueché of St. Stephen Parish in Chattanooga. Members of Our Lady of Perpetual Help and St. Jude parishes in Chattanooga will participate, along with members of St. Gerard Majella Parish in Fort Oglethorpe, Ga. The program of Advent and Christmas music will include congregational participation in singing traditional carols. For details, call the chorale office at 423-8552981 or the church at 396-2134 or visit the chorale website,




its annual Christmas concert at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 14 at White Oak Baptist Church, 310 Memorial Drive, Red Bank 37415. There is no charge. Founded in 1967, the Senior Neighbors Orchestra is composed primarily of retired musicians in the Chattanooga area. The orchestra rehearses at 10 a.m. each Monday at the Alexian Brothers Senior Neighbors Building, 250 E. 10th St., Chattanooga 37402. Interested musicians are welcome to audition each January. For more information about the orchestra or other Alexian Brothers Senior Neighbors’ performing-arts opportunities, call 423-755-6100. Visit for the monthly newsletter and calendar of events. ■


Saints at St. Dominic School Students at St. Dominic School in Kingsport celebrated All Saints Day dressed as their favorite saint. The children studied the background of their saint and shared what they learned with the school. Father Mike Nolan (back row, center), pastor of St. Dominic Parish, stands with the student body above.

Moreno continued from page 6

eral priest friends of the ordinand. In an interview shortly before Mass, the priest-to-be expressed his joy and gratitude. “It’s a great day, a big day in my life because I have been waiting many years for this moment. This is beautiful,” he said. “I am requesting so much your prayers, and I am requesting God’s help.” The bishop too encouraged the congregation “to pray for Father Moises and for all deacons, priests, and bishops, that we might be true servants in word and sacrament, true servants to you, the people of God.” He thanked the new priest “for answering the call of Christ” and asked for prayers that Father Moreno “will always act in the person of Christ and always, to the best of his ability, be another Christ present in our midst.” A slide show with 99 photos from the day of the ordination may be viewed at Moreno_slideshow/. ■

Calendar continued from page 6

OLPH School students ‘march’ into Mass on All Saints Day In celebration of All Saints Day at Our Lady of Perpetual Help School in Chattanooga, more than 80 “saints” in first through fourth grades processed into Mass to “When the Saints Go Marching In.” “St. Peter” led the way with the key to heaven. The archangels brought up the gifts. Students dressed as the Blessed Virgin and as Sts. Francis, George, Patrick, Clare, Joseph, Nicholas, Augustine, Martha, Rose of Lima, Thérèse of Lisieux, and Michael. OLPH pastor Father Jim Vick stands at left.

11 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 16, at the Senior Neighbors location at 250 E. 10th St. in Chattanooga. Call 7556100. The Soddy-Daisy Senior Neighbors building will host a Christmas party at 10 a.m. with a luncheon at 11:30 on Friday, Dec. 17. RSVP at 332-1702. Visit to view the “Alexian Chat” newsletter and a calendar of events. Mass in the extraordinary form (“traditional Latin”) is celebrated at 1:30 p.m. each Sunday at Holy Ghost Church in Knoxville, at 3 p.m. on first Sundays (new schedule) at St. Thérèse of Lisieux Church in Cleveland, and at 3 p.m. on second and fourth Sundays at St. Joseph the Worker Church in Madisonville. A traditional Latin Mass will also be celebrated at 1:30 p.m. Christmas Day (Saturday, Dec. 25) at Holy Ghost. The new schedule at St. Thérèse of Lisieux took effect Dec. 5; the next three Masses there are set for Jan. 2, Feb. 6, and March 6. Visit www. for details.


A Seekers of Silence Contemplative Saturday Morning will be held Jan. 22 at Blessed John XXIII Catholic Center in Knoxville. Asmaa Alaoui-Ismaili will give a talk titled “Islamic Perspective: Mary in the Quran.” 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. To RSVP or learn more, call 865-523-7931. The Community of Sant’Egidio is a Catholic lay ecclesial movement that focuses on prayer and service to the poor. Two Sant’Egidio groups regularly meet in the Diocese of Knoxville, in Knoxville and Johnson City. For more information on the Knoxville group, call Ellen Macek at 865-675-5541. Call Father Michael Cummins at 423-926-7061 for more details on the Johnson City group. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Keeping the beat at St. John Neumann School For the first few weeks of school this fall, kindergartners through second graders at St. John Neumann School in Farragut focused on the fundamental aspects of maintaining a steady pulse in music. Above (from left), Alexa Peck, Gabriela Sweet, Lauren Stouffer, and Jack Swartwood play “Baa, Baa, Black Sheep” on metallophones. Students learned how to perceive relative lengths of sounds and silence through singing, reading, notating, and performing rhythmic durations on various percussion instruments, distinguishing between high and low sounds. Students also studied the melodic and structural components of music by exploring traditional folk songs such as “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” and “Camptown Races” as well as Mozart’s variation on “Twinkle, Twinkle,” known as “Twelve Variations on ‘Ah vous dirai-je, Maman,’” (“Mother, I have something to tell you”). Some classes also learned how to sing through a Kodaly approach, which incorporates hand signs to represent a physical placement for specific vocal pitches. TH E E A S T TE N N E S S E E C A T H OL IC


Holy Resurrection Ruthenian Byzantine Catholic Mission has Divine Liturgy celebrations at 3:30 p.m. Sundays at Holy Ghost Church, 1041 N. Central St. in Knoxville. Call Father Thomas O’Connell at 865-256-4880. The St. Thomas the Apostle Ukrainian Catholic Mission celebrates Divine Liturgy at 10 a.m. Sundays in the chapel at the Chancery office in Knoxville. Call Father Richard Armstrong at 865-584-3307 for details. ■ DECEMBER 12, 2010


once upon

you, God’s people,” said Bishop Stika in his homily. He urged the faithful to remember the St. Stephen parishioners “who have gone before us marked with the sign of faith.” “The founders of this parish, the benefactors, maybe your parents, siblings, spouses, or children who this day sing in the presence of God with the angels and the saints—may they pray for us as we pray for them and as we teach and live the faith in Christ the King, our brother, our Lord, and our Savior.” Father Diaz thanked the bishop at the end of Mass. “It’s always a privilege and an honor to have you here to celebrate with us, especially during this time when we all gather as a people of faith to celebrate 50 years as a parish,” he said. Bishop Stika blessed the new kitchen before the dinner, as the cooks were preparing the meal. During the dinner, project architect Taylor Bowers of River Street Architecture and Steve Austin of contractor Vega Corp. were recognized. The bishop later thanked the charter members and the other parishioners for all their support of St. Stephen, publicly or otherwise. “Some people are more out front with their activities. Some people are behind the scenes. Some, the best they can do—and it’s powerful—is to pray for the work of the church and this beautiful parish. So from the bottom of my heart, I just want to say thank you for all that you do for the Church.” St. Stephen Parish can trace its roots to Feb. 15, 1954, when Bishop William L. Adrian of Nashville authorized Father Walter Bush, pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Chattanooga, to buy land on Lee Highway for a new school to alleviate overcrowding at OLPH. A search for sisters to staff the school, and fundraising to build it, took a few years. St. Stephen School finally opened in fall 1960. Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary who were staffing OLPH agreed to take one sister from there and add a second sister to staff the new school, joining two lay teachers. The children of 79 families at St. Stephen began school in Stagmaier Memorial Auditorium at OLPH in September 1960 until four classrooms were completed the next month. The 150 students and four teachers then moved to the new school. St. Stephen was officially made a mission Nov. 1, 1960, and the first Mass was celebrated Nov. 6 in the auditorium. The school was dedicated Dec. 4, 1960, and the mission became a full parish the following year with Father Morgan—who at first lived in the school—as pastor. The rectory was completed in July 1962, but parishioners would wait more than three decades before they had their own church building. While the school closed in 1977, the parish continued to use that space for Mass. The parish’s debt was retired in the Father Schilling years, and its savings grew during Father Prescott’s leadership until the possibility of a new church became a reality. Bishop Anthony J. O’Connell approved construction in 1993 and dedicated the building Oct. 22, 1995, in the final days of Father Junod’s term as pastor. St. Stephen is some 660 families strong now. Father McGinnity, who served as pastor from November 1995 to August 2005, also spoke at the dinner. The native of Ireland, by the margin of a few months over Father Morgan and Father Schilling, is the parish’s longest-serving pastor. He called St. Stephen “a parish in which people truly loved one another, and that is something I certainly experienced here: the warmth and the welcome of this parish of St. Stephen.” Father Diaz and pastoral associate Anna Anthony recognized several parishioners for their service, including anniversary-committee members Paula Reiland and John Vannucci, who produced the video. Bettye and Hugh Cotter were among the original families at St. Stephen. Mrs. Cotter attended the dinner and shared fond memories of Father Morgan. “I was a convert and Father Morgan was the first priest I really ever knew, and I’d been in the church six years when we joined here,” said Mrs. Cotter. “He was wonderful, and we had a really great women’s club and men’s club.” Mrs. Cotter explained the origin of the parish’s motto. “The way that got started about ‘the parish with a heart’ is we had these big Valentine dances, and people from all the parishes in Chattanooga would come.” Virginia Quigley and daughter Ann, both charter members, came to the anniversary dinner. The elder Quigley said that St. Stephen’s small numbers in the early days didn’t intimidate the families. “Everybody worked and everybody supported the parish, and we managed to accomplish an awful lot despite the fact that there were so few of us,” she said. Ann Quigley was only 6 years old when the parish was founded. “I remember Father Morgan when he slept up in the school, and I also remember being in Brownies and Girl Scouts here,” she said. Kathleen Conner, the first lay principal at St. St. Stephen continued on page 9


DECEMBER 12, 2010



Firsthand knowledge Knoxville’s presbyterate benefits from its membership in the NFPC.

On Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 the National Federation of Priests’ Councils gathered priest representatives of presbyteral councils of the Province of Louisville for an annual meeting. The NFPC president gave presentations, and each priests’ council offered progress reflections about the individual diocese’s life and well being. Although our sister diocese of Memphis does not yet belong to NFPC, Bishop J. Terry Steib, SVD, usually attends and sends some priest observers. The observers were indeed there, but Bishop Steib was in Seattle, attending the installation of Archbishop James Peter Sartain as Archbishop of Seattle. Archbishop Sartain is from Memphis. In 2000 he left as pastor of St. Louis Parish there to become the sixth bishop of Little Rock, Ark. In 2006 he became the fourth bishop of Joliet. In a future column I shall list the priests from Tennessee who have been made bishops. It is quite a list. The highlight of the provincial meeting every year is a presentation given by a panel of our bishops. Fresh from their own meeting earlier in

November, they were able to offer information about the bishops’ meeting that would take lots of research to discover. We are grateful to hear firsthand about so many issues developing in our church today. Only two other provinces in the country have such panels of bishops for their NFPC meeting: one in California and the other in New York. This year our panel consisted of our own Bishop Richard F. Stika, Bishop David R. Choby of Nashville, Bishop William F. Medley of Owensboro (our host), Bishop Roger F. Foys of Covington (where next year’s meeting will occur), Bishop Ronald W. Gainer from the neighboring diocese of Lexington, and its chairman and leader, Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, formerly of Knoxville but now the archbishop of Louisville. I think we all come away from meetings like that so thankful to Almighty God that the vineyard of the Lord is in such capable hands. What would a gathering of priests and bishops in the relatively small city of Owensboro have to do with the formation years of the Church in Kentucky and Tennessee? Well, a lot, I’d say, because a provincial meeting like the one described above is a snapshot of the life of the Church today, which the efforts of our

pioneer bishops, their priests, and brothers, sisters, and other lay folk have produced over the years, now just a tad over two centuries. Who would have imagined on Nov. 4, 1810, when Right Rev. Benedict Joseph Flaget, SS, was consecrated the first bishop of Bardstown (now the Archdiocese of Louisville) or when on Sept. 16, 1838, Right Rev. Richard Pius Miles, OP, was consecrated the first bishop of Nashville, or even when on Sept. 8, 1988, Bishop Anthony O’Connell became Knoxville’s first bishop, in what directions the Holy Spirit would lead our founders? Even protocol has been modified. Those early prelates were addressed as “Right Rev.” Today it’s “Most Rev.” In earlier times these men whom today we call bishops were termed monsignors. The structure of diocesan curias followed the canon (Church) law of the day and was modeled on those dioceses early bishops knew best in Baltimore and in Europe. The SS following the names of Louisville’s first bishops and the OP of Nashville’s first bishops (as well as the SVD in Bishop Steib’s title) indicates the influence that religious orders and societies had in the way our dioceses have been shaped as far as the philosophy of governance is concerned. These early connections with religious orders and societies might well account for the warm relationships diocesan priests of our province have had with our brother religious priests, both in encouraging vocations and Mankel continued on page 9

Pro-life leader honored as ‘Hometown Hero’ BY DA N M C WI L L I A M S

ome Federal Bank in Knoxville named Lisa Morris to its inaugural class of Hometown Heroes last month, and the Sacred Heart Cathedral parishioner donated the accompanying $2,500 prize to the Diocese of Knoxville to assist its pro-life work. The program recognizes “everyday citizens who do extraordinary things for others and for their community.” Eight winners were chosen from among 175 nominees in the Knox, Anderson, Blount, and Sevier county areas served by the bank. One of the eight will also have an additional $10,000 donation made to a local nonprofit in his or her name. Mrs. Morris is a longtime pro-life advocate who has volunteered with the diocesan Office of Justice and Peace for several years. In presenting the Hometown Heroes award to her Nov. 22, Home Federal president Dale Keasling pointed out those efforts as well as Mrs. Morris’s service to the Ladies of Charity, her parish, and Brakebill Nursing Home, where she brings Holy Communion to the residents each week. “This program is designed to recognize and honor those individuals who give unselfishly of their time as volunteers to make our community a better place, and Lisa Morris has certainly done that in many ways,” said Mr. Keasling at the presentation, made at his bank’s downtown Knoxville branch. Mrs. Morris received the award, and Paul Simoneau, director of the Justice and Peace Office, accepted the $2,500 check on behalf of the diocese. “I can’t even begin to express my gratitude for all that you’ve done in getting a bigger




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ADVOCATE FOR LIFE Sacred Heart parishioner Lisa Morris receives a Hometown Hero award from Dale Keasling, president of Home Federal Bank. Mrs. Morris and seven other Knoxvillians were honored Nov. 22 for doing “extraordinary things for others and for their community.”

awareness out for the poor, the homeless, the Ladies of Charity, the pro-life movement, and our elderly,” Mrs. Morris told Mr. Keasling. “I feel like this is truly a gift of God to get the awareness out on so many things, especially the sanctity of life and what the Church has done in bringing all faiths together to get this message out about the gift of life.” Mrs. Morris’s donation went a long way toward helping the diocese fund four prolife billboards placed around Knoxville. “Lisa is just a tremendously giving person,” said Mr. Simoneau, who has known Mrs. Morris since he came to the diocese in August 2006. “She really embodies the call to holiness in the sense of giving

the gift of oneself to others, and her efforts are not just in the pro-life field. She’s doing the things all of us are called to do and epitomizes both the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.” Mrs. Morris lives in Knoxville with husband Robb, son Taylor Shomaker, and daughter Elizabeth Morris. She has also served as a spokesperson for the Pro-Life Coalition of East Tennessee. “When I arrived four years ago, she really stepped up to the plate to be the co-director for 40 Days for Life,” said Mr. Simoneau. “Her involvement in pro-life activities of the diocese has been crucial. She has been a pillar of the pro-life efforts in this diocese.” ■ TH E E A S T TE N N E S S E E C A TH OLI C




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‘It’s a blessing to be a priest’ Father Mark Scholz was in his last year of veterinary school before he pursued a priestly vocation.


Father Mark Scholz

final year was around the time Bishop [Joseph E.] Kurtz was ordained a bishop. What do you enjoy most about being a priest? The sacraments are the most rewarding. Today I was able to hear confessions for people and help them get ready for Christmas—that’s a wonderful thing. You’re clean before God. That’s why it feels so good when you come out of confession: you feel a load’s been lifted off of you.

What made you decide to consider the priesthood? I was a daily Massgoer at Holy Ghost, and I often talked to Father Dan Clements, Father Albert Henkel, and Father John Dowling. They all encouraged me. I can’t remember the first one who mentioned it, but they recognized that I was there at daily Mass and involved in the RCIA program, so they began to talk to me about the priesthood.

What’s it like being responsible for two parishes? It’s challenging because of the distance between the parishes and their different personalities. Every parish has its own personality. The one in Dunlap is half Anglo, half Hispanic, and since we got our new church a couple of years ago, it’s grown a lot. The church in South Pittsburg is mostly middle-aged and older people. It has some young families, but not predominantly.

What was your discernment process like? Initially, I began on my own. I went to Holy Apostles Seminary in Connecticut because they had a discernment program. I had not yet made any commitment. Around that time Bishop [Anthony J.] O’Connell left for West Palm Beach, Fla., and I was diagnosed with a rare clotting disorder [antiphospholipid syndrome], so I took some time off. But after a while I went back to seminary. My

Does the pastor of a small parish take on more of the ministries personally? Yes. You get to know the

people a lot better in a smaller community. Neither parish has paid employees; they’re all volunteers, and that’s a wonderful thing. They’re very good about volunteering. Because we’re smaller, anywhere you can save money is a good thing. We don’t have the budget of a larger parish. What do you find most challenging in your priesthood? My health is challenging. Working through that is trying to eat right, going to the doctor and following his advice, and trying to stay as healthy as possible. Have you been supported by your congregations and family when you’re having health issues? Yes. A lot of the parishioners are very compassionate and pray for me. Family is another great strength. Brother priests are very good with that too. We have our own problems, all of us, and we try to give each other moral support. Priests are brothers and it’s good to have a brotherhood like that. They’re wonderful men. What would you say to a young man considering the priesthood? I would encourage him. It’s a very rewarding life. It’s a very good life. I think it’s a blessing to be a priest. I love being with so many good people. They inspire me a lot, just seeing the lives they live during both difficult and not-sodifficult times and the faith they have—just staying faithful through the struggle. ■

Mrs. Hunt is administrative assistant for the Media Office.



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Stephen, recognized two former St. Stephen faculty members in the dinner audience, Frances Newell and Sandra Schnur. Mrs. Conner saluted Father Morgan, who needed more than just a home when he arrived in 1961. “Not only did he have no place to live, he also didn’t have a principal because the Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary who were at OLPH were committed to this mission as long as it was a mission. As soon as it became a parish, they went back,” said Mrs. Conner, who became principal at age 20 in fall 1961 and served one year. When St. Stephen became a parish, many families from OLPH whom Father Bush urged to support the new mission returned to OLPH, said Mrs. Conner. “Father Morgan, whose praises I cannot sing enough, was a showman. He was also a promoter. He said, ‘How am I going to get these folks back to St. Stephen?’ Well, guess what? He called it ‘St. Stephen Country Day School.’ He became the headmaster, and I’m going to leave it to your imagination what he called me.” Father Morgan lived in the school office at first, then converted the faculty lounge into his living quarters, where he stayed until the St. Stephen rectory was finished. “He had a wonderful sense of humor and a hearty laugh,” said Mrs. Conner. “We’re warmed by the fire of others, and he certainly built a wonderful fire for all of us who are still here.” ■


ather Mark Scholz is the pastor of Our Lady of Lourdes in South Pittsburg and Shepherd of the Valley in Dunlap. He also provides pastoral care to pilgrims visiting the Virgin of the Poor Shrine in New Hope. He is the youngest of three children born to Jerry and Joan Scholz, members of St. John Neumann Parish in Farragut. Father Scholz has a degree in animal science from the University of Tennessee and was in his final year of veterinary school when he heard the call to the priesthood. He was ordained at Holy Ghost Church on June 20, 2002. He enjoys fishing and hiking and recently took up golf. He has a Staffordshire bull terrier named Murphy.


BLUE RIBBON ASSEMBLY Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett reads a proclamation naming Nov. 15 and 16 as “St. Joseph School Day,” covering both days in which the Blue Ribbon awards were presented in Washington, D.C. Looking on is St. Joseph principal Dr. Aurelia Montgomery.

ville Mayor and governor-elect Bill Haslam. During the Mass, Catholic Charities of East Tennessee executive director Father Ragan Schriver received a contribution from St. Joseph School that will go toward the education of children at CCET’s Columbus Home. Joining Mayor Burchett and Rep. Dunn at the assembly were Dr. Morgan, St. Joseph principal Dr. Aurelia Montgomery, and Monsignor Mankel. The St. Joseph cheerleaders performed several routines for the student body before the entire group ate cake and Blue Bell ice cream at the end of the assembly. St. Mary School began a two-hour celebration with a school Mass celebrated by Father Bill McKenzie, pastor of St. Mary Parish in Oak Ridge. The St. Mary Home and School Association and eighth-grade students hosted a reception afterward for Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce members and other visitors. St. Mary principal Sister Andrea Marie Graham, OP, unveiled a Blue Ribbon School banner at the end of an assembly that morning in the gym. Earlier, state Sen. Randy McNally of Oak Ridge presented a Blue Ribbon flag to the school, and city Mayor Tom Beehan read a proclamation. Dr. Morgan and Parker Hardy, president of the Oak Ridge Chamber, also offered congratulations. Children ate cake later in the day, and students and faculty wore blue shirts in honor of the occasion. On Nov. 16 Dr. Montgomery and fifth-grade teacher Autumn Taylor accepted the honor in Washington, D.C., for St. Joseph School, and Sister Andrea Marie and learning-lab teacher Kim Bellofatto traveled to the capital to receive the award for St. Mary School. The schools’ honors came on the heels of another one received by Notre Dame High School in Chattanooga this fall. NDHS was named one of the top 50 Catholic secondary schools nationwide by the Catholic High School Honor Roll. “This is a banner year for our diocese,” said Dr. Morgan. “We’ve had a high school named a top50 high school and two schools receive a Blue Ribbon award. That’s amazing. Our diocese has 10 schools. To have three of them honored in the same year—that’s pretty good. I’m really proud of all of them.” ■

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Ann Quigley (above) was among the charter parishioners of St. Stephen in Chattanooga who attended the parish’s golden-anniversary Mass and dinner. At left, Kathleen Conner, the first lay principal of the parish school, reminisces at the dinner.

cooperating in the active ministries of parishes and institutions. As hospitals, for example, come upon hard times these days, it jogs our memory to recall the wonderful ministry to the sick that our Catholic hospitals have produced as Daughters of Charity, Sisters of Charity of Nazareth, Sisters of Mercy, and others served as the healing face of the Lord. In mid-Advent 2010 I wish you the best of all Christmas and New Year celebrations: that God be worshiped and that he will keep you safe. Those who forget the lessons of history are doomed to repeat its mistakes. ■ Monsignor Mankel is a vicar general for the diocese and the pastor of Holy Ghost Parish in Knoxville.

Diocese of Knoxville procedure for reporting sexual abuse

Dinner emcee Rusty Phillips shares a laugh as he transfers the microphone to the next speaker, longtime former pastor Father P. J. McGinnity. Bishop Richard F. Stika dedicated a new kitchen for St. Stephen Parish before the dinner began. The first Mass at St. Stephen was celebrated Nov. 1, 1960. Originally a mission, St. Stephen achieved parish status in 1961. www.d

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.

DECEMBER 12, 2010



Illinois Catholic leaders decry passage of civil-unions bill SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (CNS)—The Catholic Conference of Illinois, which represents the state’s bishops on public-policy matters, said it regretted passage of a bill legalizing civil unions for samesex couples. The legislation, approved by the House Nov. 30 and the Senate Dec. 1, provides spousal rights to same-sex partners in a civil union and grant them legal rights in surrogate decision-making for medical treatment, survivorship, adoptions, and accident and health insurance. Gov. Pat Quinn, a supporter of the measure, has said he will sign it into law. The Catholic conference said the measure will “explicitly grant these unions the same status as marriage in state law.” “Marriage is not just any relationship between human beings. Marriage has been established by our Creator in harmony with the nature of man and woman and with its own essential properties and purpose,” the conference said in a statement. “The church did not invent marriage and neither has any state. “No ideology can erase from the human spirit,” it continued, “the certainty that marriage exists solely between a man and a woman, who by personal gift, proper and exclusive to themselves, mutually commit to each other in order to cooperate with God in the procreation and upbringing of new human lives.” The conference said that besides essentially redefining marriage, the measure also “contains the potential for a serious conflict with religious liberty,” and it urged policymakers to take such concerns seriously and work out “additional conscience protections” in the coming months. Although the bill states that nothing in its wording “should interfere with or regulate the religious practice of any religious body,” the conference said that its language “may offer little protection in the context of litigation religious institutions may soon encounter in relation to charitable services, adoption, and foster care. In an earlier statement the conference said that without “explicit protections for religious liberties,” it expected the General Assembly or the courts will soon -- require faith-based institutions that provide adoption or foster-care services “to place adoptive or foster children with couples who have entered into a same-sex civil union” -- compel Catholic parishes or agencies that provide social services (including retreats, religious camps, homeless shelters, senior-care centers, and community centers) to make those services available to individuals in same-sex civil unions -- refuse “to protect small employers who do not wish to extend family benefits to employees in a same-sex civil union.” During debate on the bill, State Sen. Heather Steans, a Chicago Democrat, told her fellow lawmakers that passing the measure “makes a statement about the justice for which we stand.” But an opponent of the measure, State Sen. Chris Lauzen, a Republican from Aurora, questioned why lawmakers were focusing on civil unions and not spending their time addressing the state’s high unemployment, home foreclosures, a large state debt, and severe problems with its social-services system. The Chicago Tribune quoted Lauzen as saying, “We are the incompetent laughingstock of government mismanagement and misplaced priorities, and our one-party (Democratic) leadership spends our time on homosexual civil unions.” ■ Copyright 2010 Catholic News Service/U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops

March for Life bus trips to Washington, D.C., planned outh and adults throughout the diocese are invited to ride a bus to Washington, D.C., next month for the 38th annual March for Life. Buses will leave early Sunday, Jan. 23, from Chattanooga and pick up travelers in Knoxville and Greeneville. Travelers will arrive at The Catholic University of America at 1:45 p.m. Jan. 23. The East Tennesseans will tour the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and the monuments before returning to the DuFour Center to spend the night. A youth rally and Mass, with Christian music artists Bob Rice and Sara Hart, at the D.C. Armory is set for 7:30 a.m. Monday, Jan. 24. More than 11,000 youth are expected at the Mass. The march will begin at 2 p.m., and Silent No More speeches on the Supreme Court steps will start at 3. The group will leave for Tennessee at 5 p.m. All travelers should contact Donna Jones at 423-718-4387 or for more information. Visit the diocesan Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry page for the march at ■



DECEMBER 12, 2010

Preparing for Christmas Benedict XVI: Like Mary, we must ‘welcome in faith and love the coming of the Savior.’ VATICAN CITY (CNA/EWTN News)—Thousands of families gathered in St. Peter’s Square on Dec. 5 to hear Pope Benedict speak about preparing their hearts for “He who comes” and to see the Vatican’s Christmas tree. As the crowd listened to Pope Benedict’s address, little children tried to peek through the barriers surrounding the Vatican’s unfinished Nativity scene for this year. The pope offered those present a reflection on the day’s Gospel, Matthew 3:112, which features St. John the Baptist’s being called into the wilderness to urge repentance to prepare for the coming of the Lord. St. Gregory the Great, the pope said, taught that “the Baptist preaches the true faith and good works . . . so that . . . the pathways to God are straightened, and honest thoughts are born in souls after listening to the word that leads to all good.” The pope then connected the mission of John the Baptist to Advent. “We too are called to hear God’s voice, echoing in the wilderness of the world through the holy Scriptures, especially when they


from the

‘HEAR GOD’S VOICE’ Pope Benedict XVI delivers his blessing after praying the Angelus prayer from the window of his apartment overlooking St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican on Dec. 5, the second Sunday of Advent.

are preached with the power of the Holy Spirit.” He pointed Catholics to the Virgin Mary as the model of listening, saying, “As we contemplate in the Mother of God a life totally shaped by the word, we realize that we too are called to enter into the mystery of faith, whereby Christ comes to dwell in our lives. “Every Christian believer, St. Ambrose reminds us, in some way interiorly conceives and gives birth to the word of God,” the pope said. Situations around

the world that cry out for the coming of Christ were also on the pope’s mind as he reflected on the phenomenon of waiting that is associated with Advent. He asked everyone to pray for “all situations of violence, intolerance, suffering in the world, that the coming of Jesus may bring consolation, reconciliation, and peace.” In particular, the pope mentioned “the continuous attacks that occur in Iraq against Christians and Muslims,” electionrelated violence in Egypt, and a dramatic

situation in the Sinai desert where Bedouin human traffickers have taken hundreds of people hostage, subjecting them to torture to extract payments from their relatives living abroad. Pope Benedict finished his address by praying: “We ask the Virgin Mary in whose womb the Son of the Most High dwelt, and whom we celebrate next Wednesday, Dec. 8, in the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, to support us on this spiritual path, to welcome in faith and love the coming of the Savior.” ■

Cardinal Ratzinger sought swift action against abusive priests in 1988 BY J OH N TH A V I S

VATICAN CITY (CNS)—A newly disclosed letter reveals that as early as 1988 the future Pope Benedict XVI pressed for swifter and more streamlined procedures to punish priests guilty of “grave and scandalous conduct.” The letter, written by thenCardinal Joseph Ratzinger when he was head of the Vatican’s doctrinal congregation, expressed concern that the normal process for dealing with such priests—which typically involved a request for dispensation from priestly obligations—took too long and was seen more as a favor than a punishment. Eventually, with Cardinal Ratzinger’s involvement, the penal procedures were simplified and sanctions were strengthened. But in 1988 the cardinal’s suggestion of a “more rapid and simplified penal process” was rebuffed by the Vatican’s canon law experts. The letter was cited in a lengthy article published Dec. 1 by the Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano. The article highlighted what it described as a “crucial role” and “decisive action” by Cardinal Ratzinger in the 20-year process of strengthening sanctions against errant priests. Cardinal Ratzinger’s letter, dated Feb. 19, 1988, was addressed to the president of the Pontifical Commission for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts, who at that time was Venezuelan Cardinal Jose Rosalio Castillo Lara. The doctrinal congregation was in charge of examining petitions for dispensation www.d

from priestly obligations, some of which involved priests guilty of grave crimes. Those offenses included sexual abuse, although sexual abuse was not specifically mentioned in Cardinal Ratzinger’s letter. Cardinal Ratzinger’s concern was that not enough attention was being given to penalties foreseen by church law for priest offenders—including “reduction to the lay state”— because the penal process was too cumbersome. He wrote that such penalties “in the judgment of this dicastery, ought in some cases, for the good of the faithful, to take precedence over the request for dispensation from priestly obligations, which, by its nature, involves a ‘grace’ in favor of the petitioner.” “Yet in view of the complexity of the penal process required by the code [of canon law] in these circumstances, some ordinaries are likely to experience considerable difficulty in implementing such a penal process,” Cardinal Ratzinger said. “I would be grateful to your eminence, therefore, if you were to communicate your valued opinion regarding the possibility of making provision, in specific cases, for a more rapid and simplified penal process,” he said. The response from Cardinal Castillo Lara came less than a month later. It was sympathetic with Cardinal Ratzinger’s concerns but recommended reminding bishops to exercise their authority rather than streamlining penal procedures. “To seek to simplify the ju-

dicial procedure further so as to impose or declare sanctions as grave as dismissal from the clerical state . . . does not seem at all appropriate,” Cardinal Castillo Lara wrote. He likewise rejected changes that would allow an “extra-judicial administrative decree in these cases.” Cardinal Castillo Lara said such modifications would “endanger the fundamental right of defense” and would favor the “deplorable tendency” toward “so-called ‘pastoral’ governance” that obscures the due exercise of authority. Instead, he said, bishops should be reminded “not to omit their judicial and coercive power” in such cases, “instead of forwarding petitions for dispensation to the Holy See.” In 2001 the doctrinal congregation was given exclusive jurisdiction over a number of “most grave crimes,” including the sexual abuse of a minor by a priest. In 2003 Cardinal Ratzinger obtained from Pope John Paul II new faculties to deal with sex-abuse offenders, including those making it easier to dismiss them from the priesthood. The Vatican newspaper article was written by Bishop Juan Ignacio Arrieta, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts. He said Cardinal Ratzinger’s letter came to light during the council’s preparation of a revision of the penal section of the 1983 Code of Canon Law. ■ Copyright 2010 Catholic News Service/U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops TH E E A S T TE N N E S S E E C A TH OLI C

Dec. 12, 2010, ET Catholic  

The Dec. 12, 2010, edition of The East Tennessee Catholic newspaper