t h e m a g a z i n e o f C at h o l i c m i s s i o n e r s t o r u r a l A m e r i c a
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Starting from Scratch Progress of new Tennessee mission fueled by faith, enthusiasm, hope
Out of the Shadows
Young immigrants make voices heard
Glenmary Home Missioners Founded by Father William Howard Bishop in 1939, this Catholic society of priests and brothers, along with numerous coworkers, establishes the Catholic Church in smalltown and rural America. Glenmary is the only religious community devoted exclusively to serving the spiritually and materially poor in the rural U.S. home missions. Today, supported entirely through freewill offerings, it staffs missions and ministries throughout Appalachia and the South. Glenmary missioners serve in areas where less than three percent of the population is Catholic, a significant percentage have no church affiliation and the Father William poverty rate is almost twice the national average. Glenmary is Howard Bishop known for deeply respecting the Glenmary Founder many cultures encountered in the home missions—Appalachian, Native American, African American and Latino among others. Its missionary activity includes building Catholic communities, fostering ecumenical cooperation, evangelizing the unchurched, social outreach and working for justice.
Glenmary Challenge This quarterly magazine has three goals: to educate Catholics about the U.S. home missions, to motivate young men to consider Glenmary priesthood or brotherhood, and to invite all Catholics to respond to their baptismal call to be missionary by partnering with Glenmary as financial contributors, prayer partners, professional coworkers and/or volunteers. Glenmary Challenge is sent to all donors, to U.S. diocesan clergy and to anyone who requests it. (To begin receiving issues, use the contact information below.) Publisher: Father Chet Artysiewicz Editor: Jean Bach Assistant Editor: Dale Hanson Art Director: Tricia Sarvak Staff Writers: Margaret Gabriel, Father John S. Rausch Planning-Review Board: Father Bob Dalton, Father Dominic Duggins, Father Gus Guppenberger, Brother Curt Kedley, Patrick McEntee, Kathy O’Brien, Father Neil Pezzulo
Glenmary Home Missioners P.O. Box 465618 • Cincinnati, OH 45246-5618 513-874-8900 • 800-935-0975 www.glenmary.org • firstname.lastname@example.org
© 2013, Glenmary Home Missioners. Reprint permission granted upon request.
Dedication, hope and new life FROM THE EDITOR / Jean Bach
he word “dedication” keeps coming to mind as I read through this issue of Glenmary Challenge. It is illustrated in the articles about missioners and coworkers starting and staffing new missions and Glenmarians continuing their ministries as senior members. And it’s what also came to mind after I interviewed Lidia Mondragon and Humberto Marquez for a story that starts on page 15. They are two of the most inspiring, dedicated, well-spoken young people I have had the privilege to encounter. As I listened to their stories and tried to condense the abundance of information they gave me for the article, I found myself wondering what I would do if I were in their positions. Would I choose to speak out and become as active as they have? That’s a hard question to answer as a U.S. citizen. But I challenge you, as you read the article, to put yourself in their shoes and try to imagine what it must feel like to live in the limbo Lidia describes.
ast year, three Glenmarians celebrated the 50th anniversary of their First Oath. Because of editorial issues, it wasn’t possible to include them in the Winter 2012 edition as planned. Jean Bach Although notoriety is not email@example.com thing most Glenmarians crave, the page-14 article pays tribute to the dedication these men have shown—and continue to show—as they serve the missionary apostolate of the home missions.
join Father Chet (page 4) in praying that the hope found in the resurrection may infuse us all with new life this Easter. May we be inspired to find a way to dedicate our lives to making a difference in the lives of others. about the cover: Father Tom Charters celebrates weekday Mass in the home of Jack and Terry Holiwski, members of St. Michael the Archangel mission in Erwin, Tenn. Over the past 18 months, Father Tom, as pastor of this new mission community without a permanent worship space, has become adept at packing Mass kits and celebrating liturgy in a variety of spaces. DONATE NOW
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THE MAGAZINE OF C ATHOLI C MISSIONERS TO RURAL AMERI C A
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Vo l u m e 7 6 / N u m b e r 1
9 photo / dale hanson
Starting From Scratch
Father Tom Charters, Brother Tom Sheehy and lay missioner Kathy O’Brien wear many hats as they work to help the new mission community in Unicoi County, Tenn., lay its foundation.
Out of the Shadows
Immigrant youth take local and national action to help promote the cause of U.S. immigration reform. Youth, Page 15
Departments & columns
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From the President / Father Chet Artysiewicz
National tragedy and personal loss call us to cling to the promise of hope found in the resurrection.
Glenmary News & Notes
Pastoral team begins work; two new missions staffed in Georgia; young converts prepare in Tennessee.
New Catholics, Page 7
Then & Now
As spring approaches, mission children look toward first Communion.
Tribute is paid to three Glenmarians who took their First Oath 50 years ago.
First Communion, Page 12
Partner in Mission
Through their volunteer service, Pat and Mary Ann Kent have experienced “mission” up close.
Final Words / from our readers
Recent articles stir memories of mission experiences; reader expresses gratitude for profile in Winter issue.
Volunteers, Page 17
from the president / Father Chet Artysiewicz
Every tear will be wiped away The Easter message of hope in the midst of loss is needed now more than ever
ere lies an oddity: I am composing this Easter message a week before Christmas. Now, that is quite understandable, given that Glenmary Challenge is a quarterly publication and deadlines for printing determine the timing of articles. But as I write this column, it seems to me that the hope of Easter is needed now for our grieving world. Last Thanksgiving the city of Newtown, Conn., was unfamiliar to most people. But the Dec. 14 killing of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School changed that. The horror that struck Newtown defies understanding. Can a mind twisted by illness or evil begin to explain such incongruity—the deaths of innocent children and adults as the world prepares to welcome the birth of innocence, Emmanuel? Perhaps the tragedy resonated so strongly with us because of our realization that it could have been my community, my school, my children….
rkansas is quite a distance from Connecticut, yet another experience of loss this past Christmas linked the two for me. Danny Phillips was 19 and had just completed his first semester of college as a seminarian for the Diocese of Little Rock. He died in a car accident en route to his home in Booneville, Ark., on Dec. 18. While his death was solitary and the result of an accident, it is as tragic for his family and loved ones as the losses experienced in Newtown. Danny was special, not only to his family and friends, but also to Glenmary. He was a member of our Booneville mission, which was returned to the pastoral care of the diocese last summer. He attended the ordination of two Glenmary priests last May and made us proud when he said he wanted “to bring some Glenmary spirit” to his future diocesan priestly ministry. Perhaps you are grieving the death of a spouse, parent, lifelong friend—or a child, which psychologists describe as the worst pain humans can experience. Was it a sudden onset of a dreaded disease, or perhaps a protracted process that afforded you many opportunities to say goodbye? As we sift through all the emotions involved 4
when loved ones die, no matter what the circumstances, we are left with a common experience of a void in our lives that we grieve. “Lord, for your faithful people life is changed, not ended.” These words from the preface of the funeral Mass have profound meaning for me and have been a comfort during times of personal grief. They are also the words the Church has given me to proclaim—as Easter asserts—that because Christ rose from the Father Chet dead, we can have confidence Artysiewicz firstname.lastname@example.org that, indeed, life is not ended. Once again this year, a new fire will be lit at the Easter Vigil, taking us from darkness to light, from death to life. From that fire Catholics will light the Easter candle, the light of which is a reminder that Christ has conquered death and nothing will ever be the same. The congregants will then share that Easter flame, lighting their own candles as reminders of the candles they received at their baptisms, recalling St. Paul’s words that if we are baptized in Christ’s death, we are baptized into his resurrection.
s springtime renews the earth and we approach Easter, may this core feast of our faith once again sustain us with hope in the midst of loss. A truth taught by many great minds is that “grace builds on nature.” God gave us hearts with which to love, and it is only natural to suffer pain and endure grief in the face of death. Tears shed over our loved ones’ deaths do not bespeak a lack of faith in God’s promise that “every tear will be wiped away,” but only the pain of losing the gifts God gave us in the persons who have died. May the profound truth of the resurrection fortify us during these passages. Thank you for all you do to assist our missioners and coworkers in proclaiming this message of hope. On behalf of all of them, I wish you a blessed Easter season. DONATE NOW
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Looking to the future of Ky. and Tenn. missions
news ¬es photo / vince federico
C atho l i c n u r t u r e
Pastoral team in place to expand on potential for growth [kentucky] On Sept. 1, 2012, Father Vic Subb, Father Crispine Adongo and Brother Larry Johnson became the new pastoral team serving two existing Glenmary missions in Lafayette, Tenn. (Macon County), and Scottsville, Ky. (Allen County), as well as a new mission in Celina, Tenn. (Clay County). Recently ordained Father Crispine and Father Vic, the mission’s pastor, provide the sacramental ministry at the three mis-
taking the lead: Father Vic Subb pastors two Kentucky missions and one Tennessee mission. He, members of the pastoral team and congregation members like MaryAnn Federico, above, are working together to help local Catholics continue building faith communities that reach out to others.
sions and are active in the community. For example,
Father Cris visits the hospitalized and home-
bound, celebrates weekly Mass with local jail inmates and works with mission youth. Brother Larry is involved with various social outreach ministries such as serving the counties’ young people. If the three missions have one overriding need, says Father Vic, it’s to keep building themselves up as strong faith communities that reach out to others. He says he’s excited about the potential for growth. As the new year unfolds, Father Vic, his fellow Glenmarians, and their mission members will be focusing on “why we come together in our mission communities, why we care for others in need, and why we welcome the stranger,” he says. “We need to remember all these things as we look towards the future.”
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Missioners assume responsibility for two missions in southwest Ga. Priest and pastoral coordinator begin outreach by meeting people and discovering needs [georgia] On the weekend of Jan. 12-13, 2013, Glenmary assumed responsibility for two mission parishes in southwest Georgia. Father John Brown is serving those living in Early County as pastor of Holy Family mission in Blakely. Susan Sweet is ministering to those living in Randolph County w w w. g l e n m a r y. o r g
as the pastoral coordinator of St. Luke mission in Cuthbert. Father John also serves this mission as a sacramental minister. “These two counties are very much ‘Glenmary territory,’” according to Father Chet Artysiewicz, Glenmary’s president. He cites that both counties have high poverty levels, 36 percent and
25 percent, respectively. The percentage of persons who claim no church home ranges from 63 percent in Early County to 59 percent in Randolph County. These two missions are exceptions in that they were already established church communities when Glenmary missioners arrived. TriniSpring 2013
tarian priests served the two mission churches in the past. “We’re happy to have two additional missions in the Diocese of Savannah,” Father Chet adds. “Our missioners look forward to settling in and discovering the needs of the counties. And most especially, they look forward to meeting the people.”
news & notes
d o n o r se r v i ces
Order your Easter cards today! Send greetings to family, friends using one-of-a-kind cards [ohio] As the Easter season approaches, Glenmary is once again making available greeting cards featuring an original work by California artist Jennifer Smith Greene. Those who receive the cards will be remembered in Glenmary’s annual Easter novena. Cards, in packs of five, are
free upon request, although a donation of $5 will help cover printing and mailing costs. “We’re happy to make these beautiful cards available to all those who want to share the joy and new life of Easter with friends and family,” says Father Dominic Duggins, Glenmary’s development director. For more information: Contact Jennifer Snedigar, Glenmary’s annual giving coordinator, at 800-935-0975 or email@example.com.
Have You Included Glenmary In Your Will?
Don’t Keep It a Secret!
f you have included Glenmary in your will or trust, please tell us so we have the pleasure of thanking you now—and including you as a member of the Father Bishop Legacy Society. These legacy gifts will help ensure that the needs of those we serve in the home missions will continue to be met in the decades to come!
To request information on how to include Glenmary in your will or trust or to notify us that you have already done so, please contact: Susan Lambert Planned Giving Officer 800-935-0975 firstname.lastname@example.org
Around the Missions Working with the pastors of the local Episcopal and Methodist churches in Bertie County, N.C., Father Mike Kerin, the pastor of the Catholic Community of Bertie County, helped organize the county’s first countywide Thanksgiving service last November. In prior years, members of the Catholic, Episcopal and Methodist churches gathered for a celebration. Father Mike is happy to report that “we had a fantastic turnout” at the first annual event, which brought together those of different denominations and racial backgrounds. The Diocese of Owensboro held a celebration on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012, in observance of the diocese’s 75th anniversary. During a Mass attended by an estimated 4,500 people, Bishop William Medley spoke of those who have contributed to the diocese’s history, mentioning especially Glenmary Home Missioners. “...the Glenmary Missioners have been our coworkers in this vineyard since their founding and are still here today. Without their missionary zeal, it is doubtful that we could boast that there is a Catholic church in every one of our 32 counties.” Glenmary’s first mission at Sunfish, Ky., was established in the diocese. A food bank has been established in Grainger County, Tenn., through the efforts of Father Steve Pawelk and the ministers of the local Baptist and Methodist congregations. Father Steve says the Hands of Christ Food Bank opened in February 2013. Unlike a food pantry, the food bank is not a direct-service entity. Instead, local agencies will contact the food bank when needs arise and the food bank will respond to the agencies. Father Steve is the pastor of Blessed John Paul II mission located in Grainger County.
Glenmary donors in the Chicago area are invited to a special event on April 21. For more information, contact Mike Prym at 800-935-0975 or email@example.com.
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photo / courtesy father steve pawelk
a Journey begins: Father Steve Pawelk anoints one of the many catechumens and candidates who are preparing to enter the Church in Glenmary’s Maynardville and Rutledge, Tenn., missions. Father Aaron Wessman, the associate pastor, is to Father Steve’s left.
m i ss i o n o u t r each
Tennessee missions to welcome new Catholics at Easter Youth, adults and families take first step on a journey toward reception of the sacraments [tennessee] On the Feast of Christ the King, five young people, ages 12-17, pledged to prepare for initiation into the Catholic Church at Blessed Teresa of Calcutta and Blessed John Paul II missions in Maynardville and Rutledge, respectively. And three children were baptized on the First Sunday of Advent. “We closed the liturgical year and began a new one with signs of new life,” says Father Steve Pawelk, pastor of both missions. The two mission communities were called together in the late summer of 2011. Since then, both have grown in membership and outreach. As Easter approaches, these five young people join with two adults and one family preparing to enter the Church. While the stories of how g laerny.moar rgy. o r g w w w.wgwl ew. nm DONATE NOW
friends are entering the Church with her this Easter. “All these people journeying towards membership in the Church are wonderful blessings to our missions,” Father Steve says. “What great gifts of faith we are receiving here in our small missions!” Another blessing to both mission communities has been the addition of Father Aaron Wessman to the pastoral team. Father Aaron serves as youth minister as well as director of faith formation. The two priests and Brothers Joe Steen and Craig Digmann are eager to welcome the new Catholics to the Church and the local mission communities. “The Holy Spirit is working here through us,” Father Steve says. “And we are so humbled and thankful!”
these individuals found their way to the Catholic Church are inspiring, McKenzie’s story is, in Father Steve’s words, “unique and amazing.” McKenzie, 17, and her grandmother drove past the storefront that houses Blessed John Paul II mission last Lent and were surprised to see that there was a Catholic presence in Grainger County. They stopped to investigate because her grandmother was Catholic but hadn’t been to church in a number of years. “As I talked to her grandmother, McKenzie sat in on the youth retreat going on that day and ended up staying for the whole day,” Father Steve says. “At the end of the day, she asked about becoming Catholic.” Since then, she has been bringing friends to church and to RCIA classes. Two of those Spring 2013
news & notes
a d o p t - a - m i ss i o n p r og r am
Two Wisconsin parishes reach out ‘beyond themselves’ Parish director challenges parishioners to see what more they can do for others through ‘adoption’ [wisconsin] When Sister Pam Biehl, OSF, became parish director of St. Mary Church in Omro, Wis., and St. Mary Church in Winneconne, Wis., in 2007, her first priority was “to get our own house in order,” she says. She and church members worked together to build up the parishes as vibrant, active communities and to refurbish physical facilities. After three years, she gave parishioners a new challenge. “I asked them to look at what more we could do for others, to reach out in some way be-
yond ourselves and our own local communities.” Based on her own past experiences, she recommended that they look into “adopting” a Glenmary mission in the South or Appalachia. “I served as director of liturgy and pastoral director for many years at St. Raphael Church in Oshkosh, Wis., where we adopted two of Glenmary’s Arkansas missions,” she says. “I know how much those relationships meant to St. Raphael and Glenmary parishioners, and I wanted our St. Mary parishes to have the same kind of experience.”
Is God calling you to a religious
Can you see yourself as a missioner?
Have you considered Glenmary priesthood or brotherhood?
if home mission ministry is for you!
Glenmary invites men ages 18-46 to attend an upcoming Come & See event in our home mission counties.
It’s a joyful—and joy-filled—life to live.
Contact Glenmary’s Vocation Office for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org www.glenmary.org/vocationinfo
Through Glenmary’s AdoptA-Mission Program, an able parish and an economically struggling Glenmary mission enter into a covenant based on mutual prayer, financial assistance and encouragement. In January 2012, the two St. Mary parishes joined forces to adopt Glenmary’s new St. Michael the Archangel mission in Erwin, Tenn., pastored by Father Tom Charters. (See article on following page.) Since then, the congregations have steadily built their relationship. They include one another in their weekly Mass intentions, and the parishes have provided financial and material support to the mission. Sister Pam and Father Tom talk by phone regularly and share parish updates. Three Erwin mission members have visited the St. Mary parishes. And one family from the Wisconsin parishes has visited Erwin and delivered needed items. “The St. Mary parishes have generously assisted us,” Father Tom says. “And it’s beautiful knowing there are two parishes out there that care about us, are in prayer for us, and are ready to help. It’s also good for our mission members to realize they really are part of the larger Church. In turn, we are reaching out to them in prayer and other ways.” For More Information: To learn more about Glenmary’s Adopt-A-Mission or Adopt-AMissioner programs, contact the Development Office at 800-9350975 or email@example.com. w w w.wgw l ew. nm g laerny.moar g r y. o r g
STARTING from SCRATCH Faith, dedication, enthusiasm and hope for the future are not in short supply in Unicoi County, Tenn., home to one of Glenmary’s newest mission communities. The experience of establishing this mission has been ‘life-giving’ to both the missioners and local Catholics. Photos and story by Dale Hanson
future and present: (Top) Members of the pastoral team (Brother Tom Sheehy, center; Father Tom Charters, standing at right; Kathy O’Brien, standing to Father Tom’s right) serving St. Michael mission join parishioners on the almost 15 acres that will someday be home to the mission’s church building. For now, the community gathers for Mass each Sunday at the local Elks Club (bottom).
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ather Tom Charters and his fellow pastoral team members at Glenmary’s new Unicoi County mission in East Tennessee have served many mission communities. However, they are especially impressed by the members of St. Michael the Archangel mission and their response in helping build a mission community from scratch. “It’s been very life-giving and amazing,” says Father Tom. “And I believe everything happening here is because of the movement and grace of the Spirit.” When he and Brother Tom Sheehy arrived in the county seat of Erwin in summer 2011, their goal was to establish a permanent Catholic presence and serve residents’ spiritual and material needs in this rural Appalachian county—where fewer than 1 percent are Catholic and over 18 percent live below the national poverty level. A Spring 2013
‘I planted the idea to evangelize, but it has taken off here in a way I’ve never experienced before.’ year later, Glenmary Lay Missioner Kathy O’Brien met future mission members Jack and Terry Holi-
joined the team as pastoral associate. In addition to the Spirit’s presence, other things stood out right away: “Neither Brother Tom nor I have ever felt so welcomed by residents and other ministers,” says Father Tom. “And the members of this new mission community have been very enthusiastic, open and welcoming, eager to evangelize, and willing to take initiative.”
efore moving to Erwin, Father Tom sent introductory letters to some local Catholics and parishes in neighboring counties, telling them Glenmary had been invited by the Knoxville diocese to establish a Catholic church in Unicoi County. He also placed ads in area newspapers. The missioners’ early, providential encounters with local Catholics, ministers and area residents were just one way they’ve experienced the Spirit’s workings. The newspapers also published well-timed, positive articles. “Things just seemed to fall into place for us,” he says. For example, during his second week in Erwin he
religious education: When the faith formation program was established in October 2012, St. Michael held classes at the local armory building. Above, young children work on a project as a volunteer teaching assistant looks on. The new parish house now provides needed space for this program. 10
wski—who introduced him to many local people and places. “We were ecstatic when we heard about Glenmary,” says Terry. Jack adds that “Father Tom has a gift for drawing people in.” From the mission’s start, weekday Masses were celebrated in the Holiwskis’ home. Beginning in September 2011, the fledgling mission had a series of organizational meetings attended by local Catholics, many of whom had joined churches in other counties over the years. “We were really happy to meet other Catholics in Unicoi County,” says mission member Roger Georgia. The pastor planted some seeds for the future at those meetings. “We talked about what it means to be a Glenmary mission,” he says, “including our call to reach out to others. We discussed having one bilingual (English and Spanish) Sunday Mass to foster a strong community. And we talked about the need to share our gifts and talents. From the start, people had good ideas and were ready to make this commitment.” Parishioner Joe McGuiness says that “the Glenmary team’s enthusiasm for what they do, combined with their openness to people’s ideas and enthusiasm, have really helped this community thrive.” One good idea was to participate in the county’s weekend Apple Festival in early October 2011. Mission members and Father Tom used the event as a means to spread the word about their new Catholic community. The festival effort was greatly expanded in 2012. “That 2011 event was one of the first examples of parishioners’ desire to evangelize and invite people,” says Father Tom. “I planted the original idea to evangelize, but it has taken off here in a way I’ve never experienced before. Our parishioners have been doing this since the mission started.” To prepare for the mission’s first Sunday Mass on Oct. 23, 2011, Father Tom arranged for a weekly Sunday rental of the local Elks Club. Since then, the congregation of Anglo and Latino members has grown from about 40 to near 90. Every Sunday, members arrive early to set up the room and carry in everything needed for Mass and their gathering afterwards. “The people really like being together,” says parishioner Art Campbell. “And I thoroughly enjoy being part of it and helping it grow.”
ission members are also glad the entire community celebrates a bilingual Sunday Mass. Kim Stroud says it has made the mission stronger. Fellow parishioner Irma Padilla agrees: “Our family feels very welcomed. Being part of this mission has been exciting and amazing.” The Catholic community has used various locations for services and activities, including a senior center, a Methodist church, an armory and Kathy O’Brien’s home. DONATE NOW
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Local ministers have invited Father Tom (and later Kathy) to join the ministerial association, have offered assistance and prayers, and have welcomed the mission to join in ecumenical outreach efforts—including prayer services, distribution of Thanksgiving food baskets, and the Witness Walk on Good Friday. Parishioners have been performing a wide range of other mission and outreach work, too. For instance, a new Knights of Columbus roundtable—organized by parishioners and Brother Tom—has coordinated food drives, a firewood drive, a fund drive for people with physical and mental chal- food and faith: Father Tom initiated a weekly “Food and lenges, and more. The Lively Lilies wom- Faith” restaurant gathering for adults, which began as an inforen’s group supports causes such as a local mal question-and-answer session on faith-related topics and evolved into an adult religious education program. “It’s been a shelter for abused women. Brother Tom has volunteered with tremendous success,” he says. community nonprofit organizations and serves the mission in many ways—such as cochairing the social concerns committee, which “responds to requests the In addition, Kathy leads the high school youth mission receives from local people in need.” Some recent, exciting developments have impacted ministry, and teenager Laura Leon says she really enall the mission members’ ministries and futures: In joys and learns from the faith formation classes and September 2012, the Knoxville diocese announced it field trips. “I ask a lot of questions, and Miss Kathy had purchased 14.5 acres for use by the newly named does her best to answer them.” Fluent in Spanish, Kathy is connecting with and St. Michael the Archangel mission. In January 2013, a house was rented to be used for parish offices; most ministering to Latino mission members and county weekday Masses and religious services; faith forma- residents. The number of Latinos attending Sunday Mass has increased significantly since she began outtion classes; meetings; and the pastor’s residence. “The new property is part of our future,” says Father reach efforts in the community. In response to numerous requests, Kathy has also Tom. “And the parish house gives us roots.” One of Brother Tom’s newer ministries is chairing begun teaching Spanish and English classes, “which the property-site development committee and do- will further improve our parishioners’ ability to coming related planning and hands-on work. Committee municate and evangelize.” In May, she’ll begin minmembers already completed a preliminary project on istering to seasonal migrant workers at local farms. the property. “I love using my construction skills to And she continues to explore other community outreach opportunities. help the mission,” he says. “The people here work together so well,” says The Knights of Columbus members have also committed to funding and constructing a pavilion and de- Kathy. “For example, the mission’s first Our Lady of veloping a soccer field on the property in the immedi- Guadalupe celebration this past December was aweate future, as well as maintaining the grounds, with some. Parishioners organized it all, and about 140 help from other parishioners. The pavilion will be used people participated—both Latinos and Anglos.” for outdoor Masses and gatherings, while the field will ince 2011, the Glenmary team and Unicoi County be used by parishioners, friends and area residents. A Catholics have all been contributing their Godmultipurpose building, church and rectory are in the given talents to St. Michael mission. “My greatmission’s future plans. est joy,” Father Tom says, “has been to watch n August 2012, Kathy O’Brien began work as the them develop into a close-knit, loving mission mission’s pastoral associate. Since her arrival, she community and to see them get so excited about has established a faith formation program and sharing their faith with others.” serves as its coordinator. The growing program His vision for the future is that this Spirit-filled serves about 50 young people. “We had a great re- community will continue to thrive and grow to its sponse to our call for volunteer teachers,” she says. full potential.
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Then & NOW
Celebrating first Communion Foundation of faith laid for children through sacramental preparation
1950s: Members of a first Communion
class at St. Anthony mission in Norton, Va., pose following Mass. photos / glenmary archives
s spring approaches, children in Glenmary missions are preparing to receive their first Communion. Mission religious education programs help prepare children to receive the sacraments of initiation (baptism, Eucharist, confirmation) and further their understanding of the Catholic faith—both of which will help sustain them throughout their lives.
1950: Children from Appalachia, Va., attended a summer religious Vacation Bible School to pre-
pare for their first Communion, which was celebrated at the end of the program. In Glenmary’s early years—when travel between counties was not easy—children preparing to receive the sacraments sometimes had to leave their homes for several weeks during the summer to attend regional sacramental preparation classes/programs led by women religious serving the area. Father Francis Wuest is pictured above, as are Glenmary Sisters Bernadette and Gerald.
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2008: On Easter Sunday, Mykaela Abbott of Holy 1974: Glenmary Father John Garvey
poses with students from Jesus Our Savior mission in Morehead, Ky.
Redeemer mission in Vanceburg, Ky., receives her first Communion from Glenmary Father Larry Goulding as her father, Jerod, looks on. Mykaela was the only child in the mission’s first Communion class that year. Because of the small percentage of Catholics in Glenmary mission counties, it’s not uncommon to have small first Communion classes.
2012: Glenmary Father Steve Pawelk listens as a member of Blessed John Paul II mission in Rut-
ledge, Tenn., reads during the mission’s first-ever Mass celebrating first Communion. Students in religious education classes at this mission, as well as at Blessed Teresa of Calcutta in nearby Maynardville, are looking forward to celebrating their first Communions in the near future. Father Steve pastors both missions.
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2012 jubilarians / by Jean Bach
Milestones: 50 years since Oath Missioners continue to dedicate lives to Glenmary, the U.S. missionary apostolate
ather David Glockner says he feels like he grew up with Glenmary. As a young person, the Portsmouth, Ohio, native attended a Christian Living Camp hosted by Glenmary in a nearby town. “That’s what started my vocation journey to Glenmary,” he says. When talking about his 50 years as a missioner, Father David uses the word “wonderful” quite often. He uses it when describing his assignments as pastor of missions in West Virginia, Oklahoma, Virginia and Ohio and as novitiate director; when speaking of his fellow missioners and coworkers; and when speaking of those who live in Glenmary mission counties. “When I entered Glenmary, I didn’t have any idea the next decades would be filled with such diverse ministry,” he says. “But that’s what makes Glenmary’s work—although challenging—so exciting.” As a senior member, he continues taking part in that diverse ministry as sacramental minister to Glenmary’s missions in Vanceburg and Grayson, Ky., and reaching out to those in the area, especially prisoners in nearby Elliott County, whom he visits weekly. “I was away from the missions for a while and I began to miss the small-parish life,” he says. “The opportunity arose to return to the missions and I felt I could use my years of experience as a pastor to help out. It’s been a good decision!”
ather Ed Gorny took senior membership in 2002 and chose to keep living and working in a Glenmary mission. The decision, he says, was an easy one. “I wanted to keep serving people in the missions and sharing the Lord with others without being responsible for the administrative side, as a pastor is.” Realizing the shortage of priests in Glenmary’s South Georgia missions, he offered to help. At the time, the pastor of Glenmary’s St. Christopher mission in Claxton was also responsible for serving two other missions. So, Father Ed moved to Claxton to “serve however I could.” The Detroit, Mich., native says he continues to do what he tried to do as a pastor: nur-
ture Catholics, build relationships with other churches, help those in need, and make Christ known to people who don’t know him or have fallen away from their faith. In the past five decades, Father Ed has pastored missions in Georgia, Kentucky, Texas and Ohio and served as Glenmary’s treasurer for four years. During three of those years, he also served as a pastor. “It’s been a good life,” he says when reflecting on his 50 years as a Glenmarian. “It’s been very fulfilling to be Christ’s representative to those I’ve met and ministered to. I’d highly recommend it as a career choice!”
rother Bernie Stern’s interest in cooking began when he was a young man helping his dad in the kitchen. Brother Bernie’s father was a well-known chef in the Greater Cincinnati area who worked at local restaurants. “When I joined Glenmary, they needed someone to help in the kitchen at the Headquarters in Cincinnati,” the Dayton, Ky., native remembers. “So I jumped in.” As a result, Brother Bernie spent many years as Glenmary’s chef, using his culinary skills at the Cincinnati residence and at the Glenmary novitiate house when it was located in Aurora, Ind. Brother Bernie is also an accomplished accordion player who shared his talents with those in the missions. While serving missions in North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and Kentucky, he provided music at social events. But, most importantly, he was able to play at Mass. “Often in our small missions there isn’t music to accompany the singing,” he says. “So it was a blessing to have my accordion be the organ!” A senior member since 1995, Brother Bernie’s health limits his activity but he spends his days in prayer, remembering Glenmary benefactors, missions and missioners. “I’m happy to be able to serve the missions in this way,” he says. DONATE NOW
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out of the shadows Young Arkansas immigrants choose to risk exposure by lending their voices to a nationwide effort to advance immigration reform with a path to citizenship By Jean Bach
photo / courtesy lidia mondragon
idia Mondragon but there is no way to and Humberto make that happen.” Marquez excelled She explains that as students at currently there is at Waldron (Ark.) High least a 10-year wait School. They had to get a visa to the many friends and United States, and were active memthere is no guaranbers of the parish tee that a visa will be and youth group at granted even after St. Jude, the former the wait. For those Glenmary mission in estimated 11 million Waldron. And they undocumented imhad dreams of atmigrants living in the tending college. United States, there But when they is no process for apwere each offered telling their stories: Lidia Mondragon (front row, plying for citizenship scholarships based left) and Humberto Marquez (back row, right) join with without returning on their academic their peers to tape an episode of El Latino. The show, a to Mexico and being performance, they monthly roundtable discussion shown on a Little Rock PBS put on the visa waitcouldn’t apply. “It station, focuses on issues of interest to the Latino commuing list. was bittersweet,” says nity. The young immigrants are using a variety of media to This limbo makes Humberto, 18. “I was promote the reform of current U.S. immigration policies. it difficult for stuexcited about my fudents like Lidia and ture, but I felt doors closing on me.” Humberto who have lived in the United States most Those doors have closed on Humberto, Lidia and of their lives to plan for their futures and attend colthousands like them because they lacked one thing: lege. But thanks to benefactors and the encouragea Social Security number. ment of many, they are both attending the University of Arkansas at Fort Smith. ver a decade ago, Lidia’s parents and Humberto’s Lidia, who was the salutatorian of her high school parents left Mexico in search of work when their class, is a junior majoring in pre-med and biology. children were very young. Today, the children Humberto is a freshman (although academically he’s have few memories of life in Mexico. But since a sophomore thanks to the credits he received for adtheir parents are not U.S. citizens, these young people vanced placement classes he took in high school) and are in what Lidia describes as “immigration limbo.” is majoring in business administration/international “The United States is my country. It’s the country studies. that I pledged allegiance to throughout grade school Both pay out-of-state tuition of $10,000 a semesand high school,” says Lidia, 20. “I don’t know any- ter and are not eligible for any type of financial asthing about Mexico or the way of life there. I want to sistance. Lidia’s parents work seven days a week, 12 become an official U.S. citizen more than anything, hours a day to help pay her tuition. Humberto
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‘Our hope is that by telling our stories...eyes will be opened to the reality of the immigration issue….’
received private scholarships to pay for his first ful to tell anyone. But I realized that, as history has
semester; he hopes that he’ll be able to continue his education using money he has saved from part-time jobs since he was a child. “We don’t want things given to us,” Lidia says. “We want to work for our futures. And the only way our plans can have some stability is if there is a way for us to become citizens.”
n early 2012, under the guidance of Kathy O’Brien— a Glenmary Lay Missioner who served St. Jude as pastoral associate—Lidia, Humberto and their friends were inspired to add their voices to a national movement to pass the DREAM (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Act by forming the Waldron DREAMers, a group supporting the legislation. Early last year, members began educating themselves, their families, friends and neighbors about what can be done to further the cause. First introduced in the U.S. Congress in 2001, the DREAM Act would provide immigration benefits to those who arrived in the United States as children and would provide a formal path to citizenship after they meet specific criteria. It’s expected that new DREAM Act legislation will be reintroduced to Congress in early 2013. “Our eyes were opened after attending a 2012 meeting sponsored by the Arkansas Coalition for DREAM,” Humberto says. The statewide, youth-led immigrant organization advocates, among other things, state and national passage of the DREAM Act. “We saw the broader issue and met others like us.” Most importantly, they learned what they could do locally. “These kids are amazing,” Kathy says. “They have taken ownership of the cause, and as a result, they are impacting legislative efforts locally and nationally.”
ast year, Humberto joined more than 600 leaders from 30 states at the United We Dream Congress in Kansas City, Mo. After that meeting, the immigration network expanded its platform from focusing solely on the passage of the DREAM Act to working for comprehensive immigration reform with a path to citizenship. Humberto explains delegates felt that “even if the DREAM Act is passed, our hardworking family members would still be in danger of being deported. We couldn’t live with that.” As Lidia and Humberto became more involved with grassroots leadership, they each had to make a decision to “come out of the shadows” and begin telling their stories publicly, hopeful that by putting faces on the facts of the sometimes hotly contested issue, people’s minds and hearts might be changed. Humberto explains that before the Waldron DREAMers, “No one except my very closest friends knew of my status or knew my story. I was very fear-
shown, without risk there is no gain, so I started telling my story and working for change.” The hope, Lidia says, “is that by telling our stories and answering people’s questions, eyes will be opened to the reality of the immigration issue and information can be shared. Understanding is key. This is not an issue that can be easily solved, but we have to start somewhere.”
idia and Humberto both credit Kathy and Father Neil Pezzulo, former pastor of St. Jude, with helping them realize their potential. “Knowing Father Neil and Kathy is a blessing for us all,” Humberto says. “It’s so important to have someone tell you that ‘you can do it,’ believe in you and help you do more than you ever thought you could. My faith is so much stronger today because of them. I am so grateful to Glenmary for sending them to us. “Although neither of them is present in Waldron today (the mission was turned back to the Diocese of Little Rock for continued pastoral care in 2012), I feel their presence with me every day.”
n 2012, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy was enacted, giving two-year deferrals to those who qualify. But it does not give legal status. While this is a start, Lidia says it’s not what is wanted or needed. “There’s no indication of what happens after the two years,” she says. Some governors have stated that, despite DACA, deferred students will continue to be charged out-of-state tuition. “I want so much for my future,” she says. “I want to go to medical school and become a doctor. I want to give back to my community and this wonderful country. And those goals become more difficult to achieve if I don’t know from year to year what my status is.” Humberto says he knows staying in college and working for immigration reform will be a struggle. But he remains optimistic about his future and that of others like him throughout the United States. “I have my faith and I’m getting an education. To me, those are the things that a successful life is based on,” he says. “I’m looking forward to having a career, having a family and living without fear. I want to someday see my mother and father own their own home.” It will happen, he says. “This is America. All things are possible here.”
For more information: Learn more about the Catholic Church’s position on migration and immigration by visiting www.justiceforimmigrants.org. The Web site, sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, also contains recent news, statements from U.S. bishops and parish resources for education and action. DONATE NOW
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Partner in mission / by Margaret Gabriel
Volunteers see ‘mission’ close up Time spent in Glenmary missions has given Ohio couple new perspective
tors’ appointments,” she says. Pat and Mary Ann say they were astounded at the amount of activity that took place at the mission—and at the extent of Father John’s involvement. Pat says the greatest lesson he has learned while spending time in the missions is that “it’s all about the people. That makes mission trips even more meaningful: meeting and working with the people.” Mary Ann believes they and all the volunteers were welcomed so warmly into the Swainsboro community because of Glenmary’s presence. “These are people who, at one time in their lives, had probably never met a Catholic—you can see the impact that Glenmary’s presence has had on the community.”
he mission environment has expanded the Kents’ view of the world and the Church. They say, for example, that they view immigration issues differently because of their experience working with Latinos in Glenmary missions. “We never would have gotten to experience that anywhere else,” says Mary Ann. The anxiety Pat felt before his first mission trip in 2006 is long gone. He and Mary Ann eagerly look forward to their 2013 trip to Maynardville, Tenn., a small town in East Tennessee where Glenmary began calling the Catholic community together in 2011. They feel confident that their mission experience there will be as fulfilling as their experiences in Georgia and Mississippi.
ince 2007, Pat has made a mission trip nearly every year, working at Glenmary missions in Swainsboro and in Ripley and Bruce, Miss. For five springs, he and Jim and a group of volunteers who called themselves the I-70 Catholics drove to South Georgia to volunteer. Pat says the work accomplished by Glenmary missioners is “phenomenal,” a feeling confirmed by his wife, Mary Ann, who has accompanied him on mission trips since they married five years ago. Before meeting Pat, she had never heard of Glenmary. But during their courtship, Pat told her about his “spring break” trips and asked if she would like to go along. “It’s one thing to read about the work of someone like Father John in Glenmary Challenge, but it’s another to live it for a week!” says Pat, who assembles a group of five to eight people for each trip. Much of the groups’ work in Swainsboro was oriented to home repair or small construction projects like building an access ramp for a person who uses a wheelchair. Mary Ann and other volunteers not skilled in construction picked up supplies, and “Father volunteers: Pat Kent, left, Ed Burt and John always had a list of services that needed to Mark Schmalz stand in front of a deck they be done for the people, like taking them to doc- built while in South Georgia. w w w. g l e n m a r y. o r g
photo / courtesy Pat Kent
n 2006, following Hurricane Katrina, Pat Kent and his best friend, Jim Snyder, felt a call to help with the devastation caused by the storm. Although they were eager to help, they felt some anxiety on the 14-hour road trip from Ohio to Biloxi. “We had a lot of time to question how we would respond,” says Pat, a longtime Glenmary donor. They found some of the answers as they worked to meet the needs they encountered in Mississippi. With anxiety put to rest, the two decided they wanted to go on future trips. But that raised another question: “Where should we go?” Pat’s days as a Glenmary seminarian, and over 10 years as a member of Glenmary’s Boost-AMonth Club, made him knowledgeable about the need for volunteers in the home missions. After contacting Glenmary’s Headquarters in Cincinnati, he was matched with Father John Brown, then pastor of the Glenmary mission in Swainsboro, Ga. (The mission was returned to the pastoral care of the Diocese of Savannah in 2012.)
final words / from our readers
Memories stirred by articles Readers reflect on experiences in mission counties, express gratitude for tribute rewarding experience
thank you for the article [“Era Ends in Ohio County,” Winter 2012]. I enjoyed reading and reminiscing about Beaver Dam and Fordsville, Ky. Three other seminarians and I were assigned to work with Father Joe O’Donnell and Father Bob Dalton at Fordsville for the summer of 1966. While there we introduced ourselves to every resident we could meet. Also, we aided a family whose house burned down in early July. We went to Beaver Dam and ‘As a parish priest raided the doin Charlotte, N.C., nated-clothes I greatly appreciate closet there. It the experiences that seemed funny that we were I had among the picking clothes kind and welcoming for the family members and people of Ohio and we didn’t even Butler counties.’ know what size clothing they wore! Fordsville residents Rex and Enzie Denton were instrumental in getting the town school open for the first Mass to be offered there in July 1966. Being there was a rewarding and memorable experience. Joe Lefebvre Fleetwood, Pa. A witness to change
the article on the death of Father George Mathis [“Missioner, Craftsman, Artist,” Winter 2012] rightfully complimented him for having “integrated Glenmary’s mission in Claxton, Ga., in 18
the 1960s, making it the first such parish in the Savannah diocese.” I recall so well conducting the funeral of our black parishioner, Miss Ada Toomer, in 1962 when the local laundromat still said “White Only” on the front window and the drinking fountains/restrooms at the local Dairy Queen were labeled “White” and “Colored,” lest potential users were uncertain as to the appropriate facility. As the assistant pastor, I buried Miss Toomer in the black cemetery of Claxton but I had a white Evans County sheriff escort—a first in the segregated South of 50 years ago. Yes, the times, they are achangin’. George, rest in peace. Paul Ackerman Columbus, Miss. ohio county memories
your article [“Era Ends in Ohio County,” Winter 2012] brought back a lot of memories for me. I started in Glenmary’s candidacy program at the Hartford House in 1988. It was nice to see the photo of Father Joe O’Donnell and the chapel where we began our day in prayer. It was in Ohio County, Ky., that I learned the basics of pastoral care and ministry and where my vocation to Holy Orders was solidified. That was a formative year for me, and I still keep up with a couple of families from that period of my life. As a parish priest in Charlotte, N.C., I greatly appreciate the experiences that I had among the kind and welcoming people of Ohio and Butler
counties. They have inspired more than a few homilies over the years. I still remember the sign entering into Hartford: “Welcome to Hartford, Ky.—Home of 2,000 happy people and a few soreheads.” Father Mark Lawlor Charlotte, N.C. touching tribute
the beautiful cover of your Winter 2012 publication caught our attention immediately. And yes, we were right. The artist was Charley Campbell, the brother of my wife, Suzy. His art has graced your magazine in the past. Then we were delighted to discover “Legacy of Beauty” by Jean Bach—the marvelous tribute to Charley that captured not only the beauty of his work but his inner beauty, too. Certainly his love of God, family, fellow man and all of God’s creation was apparent to those who were blessed to know him. Thank you for the tribute to Charley in your magazine that does such a great job of sharing the important ministry of Glenmary Home Missioners. Deacon Wally Gieringer Hot Springs Village, Ark. Readers’ Views welcome!
Send comments to: Editor, Glenmary Challenge, P.O. Box 465618, Cincinnati, OH 45246. Fax: 513-874-1690, Email: challenge@ glenmary.org. Comments are printed at the discretion of the editor and may be edited for clarity and space. Please include a postal address. DONATE NOW
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Glenmary G l i m p s e / Marking a milestone
he members of Sts. John and Elizabeth mission in Grayson, Ky., celebrated the 40th anniversary of the mission’s founding in November 2012. Many Glenmary priests and brothers who had served the mission attended the Mass, celebrated by Glenmary’s first vice president, Father Neil Pezzulo. Father David Glockner, the mission’s current sacramental minister, had the privilege of dedicating and blessing the newest additions to the church interior: two new stained-glass windows depicting St. John and St. Elizabeth. The windows were the last stained-glass project completed by artist Charley Campbell before his death in July 2012.
Catholic Missioners to Rural America
Glenmary Home Missioners P.O. Box 465618 Cincinnati, OH 45246-5618
Published on Mar 5, 2013