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Welcoming New Staff...................................... page 3 Fr. Jim Evans, Chaplain................................. page 3 Calendar of Events......................................... page 3


Building a Culture of Life

Issue 6

The walls literally shook

Thirty priests attended our 2nd annual Priests’ Appreciation Dinner, co-hosted by CookWalden Funeral Homes, on Aug. 28 at The Headliners Club.

JPII Life Center and Cook-Walden honor Diocesan priests

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of natural family planning. JPII Life Center Co-Founders Tim and Pat Von Dohlen toasted the priests for their commitments toward building a Culture see “Priests” on page 2 of Life.

board reflections

What’s possibly more enjoyable than dinner with a friend who is a priest? Dinner with a roomful of priests! Some newly-ordained, others pillars of the Austin pro-life movement for decades, 30 priests gathered at The Headliners Club in downtown Austin on Aug. 28 for a dinner hosted by The JPII Life Center and CookWalden Funeral Homes. Some priests traveled as far away as College Station, Copperas Cove, Caldwell and Kingsland to join us. Dr. Jeremy Kalamarides presented “Charting the Future: Stories of Hope.” He told of the spiritual and physical benefits and successes he’s witnessed through the NaProTechnology method

“She has had three past abortions and is considering another. This is the only time she can come.” That was reason enough to change our plans for the evening. My son and I turned around and drove back to The JPII Life Center to help Veronica.* When I met Veronica, I learned that she had been abused in every conceivable way beginning at age five. She was hurt, confused and very angry. To make matters worse, she didn’t have a job or a home. And, she was pregnant again. What other choice did she have besides abortion? When she and her friend went into the sonogram room with Dr. Kalamarides, I joined my five-yearold who was playing in my office. He and I prayed for God to provide this young mother with hope and love. (You have to keep things very simple when praying about an issue like this with a kindergartner.) A few minutes later, we heard sobbing. Very loud sobbing. In fact, the walls shook see “Walls” on page 2

Our activity - and inactivity - is a choice Blessed Teresa of Calcutta said, “We may not be able to do great things, but we can do small things with great love!” In the battle between life and death, as Christians we are called to do something whether it is great or small. We do not have the luxury of sitting on the sidelines

and passively watching someone else fight this battle. If our eyes have been opened, we must act. Not everyone is called to the same level of activity, but in each of our own individual circumstances we can and must do something to further the cause of life. see “Our Choice” on page 2

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Walls continued from page 1

Priests continued from page 1

she was crying so hard. My son looked up at me with big eyes and asked, “Mommy, what are they doing to her?!” I explained that she probably saw the heartbeat of the little baby inside her tummy. He smiled. When Veronica came out of the sonogram room, she was a different woman. She made eye contact. She smiled. In fact, she literally ran up to me and gave me a big hug. She was exhuberant at the thought that there was finally someone in the world whom she could truly love - and who would love her back. “We couldn’t tell, but I just know it’s going to be a girl!” she exclaimed. We connected her with the resources she needed and have seen her a few times since. Your prayers and gifts made this story possible. Thank you. Veronica still has a very long and difficult road. Please keep her and all our mothers and babies in your continued prayers. Thank you and God bless you!

“The priests of our Diocese give of themselves so generously in the service of Jesus Christ and their parishioners,” Tim said. “The JPII Life Center is pleased to give them a night to relax and have fellowship – it is the least we can do.” Names were drawn for door prizes that included a fishing weekend, $500 cash, and UT football tickets. Competition was fierce for a “History of the Diocese” game, created by Msgr. Michael Sis, Vicar General. Priests had to match 20 parish names with the years they were founded. Priests were given the book, “Physicians Healed,” which featured stories of 15 doctors who no longer prescribe contraceptives. They were asked to read it and share it with at least one physician they know. They also received CDs

~ Written by Kim Speirs * Name changed to protect privacy.

Newlyweds Sabrina (Vega) and Matthew Blackwell volunteered at the Wine Tasting Date Night where Christopher Sperling presented an introduction to Theology of the Body.

Fall 2012

featuring Cardinals, Bishops, Priests and Deacons from across the nation who have preached about the beauty of Natural Family Planning. “All of us at Cook-Walden Funeral Homes and Cemeteries were so proud to assist the John Paul II Life Center in honoring and appreciating the Godly priests of the Austin Diocese,” said John Onstott, president of Cook-Walden Funeral Homes. “It was enjoyable spending the evening with priests, who are on the front lines of preserving God’s creations and are to be honored and thanked for their calling as humble servants of our Lord.” Special thanks to JPII Life Center volunteers Lily Oberg, Mary Morales and Matthew Anderson for their help. ~ Written by Mary Morales

Our Choice continued from page 1 Over the last 40 years since this country made it legal to kill the unborn, we have seen many join the fight to save lives and protect women. We are beginning to make a difference. More children’s lives are being saved and more women are being helped. Leaders on many fronts are beginning to see the light. Natural Family Planning is no longer the best kept secret. And, many are learning about the beauty of a woman’s fertility and the precious gift that children are. However, babies are still dying, women are still being harmed and this culture still often sees pregnancy as a disease and children as problems to be eliminated. Whatever our state in life, God has laid before us the choice between life and death (Deuteronomy 30:19). Our inactivity is a choice. Whether we are a doctor, lawyer, housewife, business owner, graphic artist, blogger, fundraiser, volunteer, millionaire, homeschooler, student, pastor, legislator, adoptive parent, radio talk show host, teacher, CPA, prayer

warrior, sidewalk counselor, seamstress, computer whiz, researcher, scientist, professor or truck driver, there is a place for us in this cause. The list is as long and varied as the number of Christians willing to act. Sometimes we get tired or discouraged. Satan still snatches so many, but we must remember HOPE, beautiful hope in God’s promise, that He will bring good out of any situation when we trust in Him. The staff, volunteers and board members of the JPII Life Center and Vitae Clinic are inspired by this hope and God’s promise of victory. We press on even when things get difficult. We are so very thankful for all of the courageous men and women who in whatever way great or small have helped us. If you are ready to make the choice for life and want to step into the battle, please join us. Through your prayers and your efforts we will win the day for life and save so many souls for Christ! ~ Chris and Sheri Danze Co-Founders and Board Members

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Fall 2012

page 3

JPII Life Center Chaplain sets example as priest, and husband!

Fr. Jim and Mary Evans in Rome with St. Peter’s Bascilica in the background.

Ma Ca rk le Yo nd u ar r s!

Much of The JPII Life Center’s mission revolves around the beauty of marriage. Most of our Creighton classes involve married couples. All of our board members are married couples, and an interesting fact is that our chaplain, Fr. Jim Evans, is also married. While serving in the US Air Force Intelligence overseas, Fr. Evans met a beautiful woman who was studying at the Universite d’Aix-Marseille, Mary

Kirkpatrick. They were married and together traveled the globe as Fr. Jim pursued various careers and Mary raised their two children and worked as an educator and counselor. Life eventually brought them to Austin where Fr. Jim earned a Master of Divinty from the Episcopal Theological Seminary. Four years later, while serving as rector of St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church, he began his journey into the Catholic faith – and the Catholic Priesthood. Over the next four years he, Mary, their children, grandchildren and parents entered the Church. On May 19, 1994, they proudly watched as he was ordained a Catholic Priest at St. Mary Cathedral in Austin. Because of his passion for serving those most in need, Tim and Pat Von Dohlen asked Fr. Jim if he would be interested in serving as chaplain of a new non-profit they were forming, The JPII Life Center. Fr. Jim agreed and has since participated in grand openings, dinners, and other

events that we’ve held to further the Culture of Life. Just this month, he celebrated another Mass at our chapel as part of our crisis pregnancy training. Fr. Jim’s devotion to Mary is evident as each time her name is mentioned he grins a contagious smile. What a blessing and testimony he and Mary are to us all!

Please join us in welcoming Andrea Goebel (left) and Jennie Stone (right) to Vitae Clinic and The JPII Life Center! Andrea is our new Medical Assistant working with Christine Mesich and Dr. Kalamarides. Jennie is our new Pregnancy Consultant and will help women in crisis find positive, life-affirming solutions. Both are fluent in Spanish.

Sept. 26 - Nov. 4 - 40 Days for Life Join hundreds of others in fasting and praying for an end to abortion. Visit Oct. 6 - Blessing of Dominican Sisters of Mary Property At 2 pm on the corner of Hwy 29 and CR 106 in Georgetown. Support the wonderful Sisters! Oct. 17 - Texas Alliance for Life Dinner Visit Oct. 19, 21 - Restless Heart Movie - Limited Showing! $20 million movie about the life os St. Augustine - tremendous sinner to great saint! $10 per ticket. Proceeds benefit The JPII Life Center. Oct. 20 - Religious Freedom Rally At noon in front of the State Capitol. Oct. 23 - Relevant Radio Faith, Family & Freedom Luncheon With Sheila Liaugminas at 11:00 am at Austin Country Club. Dec. 5 - JPII Life Center Benefit Dinner With USCCB Pro-Life Chair Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Invocation by Austin Bishop Joe Vásquez and honoring Dr. and Mrs. Thomas Hilgers. Sponsorships to meet Cardinal DiNardo and tickets available at or 512-407-2900. Theology of the Body 8-week Christopher West DVD Series Learn more about “Your Call to Greatness” in Seton Hospital’s St. Vincent de Paul Auditorium - 1345 Philomena St. Hold the dates: Jan. 10, 17, 24, 31... Feb. 21, 28... Mar. 7, 14. Facilitated by Tony and Becky Saucedo.

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Fall 2012

Austin woman finds natural cure for PMS

After suffering nearly three years with PMS, Alexis DeLee discovered NaProTechnology and is back to normal.

Alexis DeLee suffered from severe PMS almost three years. It was affecting her relationships and she was even finding it hard going into work. She tried many options to treat it, but nothing worked. While searching the

internet, she learned about NaProTechnology, a highly effective medical science that treats the underlying causes of women’s health issues and works in concert with the natural cycle of fertility. Alexis was thrilled that she could make an appointment in Austin at the Vitae Clinic, an Ob/Gyn clinic that uses NaProTechnology. She began tracking her fertility cycles, which helped Dr. Jeremy Kalamarides determine that her body’s hormone levels were very high and then crashed midcycle. She received targeted HCG therapy and the effects were immediate. Today, her PMS is gone and her quality of life has

improved tremendously. If you or anyone you know suffers from PMS, encourage them to call for an appointment at the Vitae Clinic to discuss the benefits of NaProTechnology: 512-458-6060 or www. ~ Written by Lori Mazzurana

Fifty guests attended our “Wine Tasting Date Night” in honor of Natural Family Planning Week on July 28.

Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, who will keynote our Dec. 5 dinner, “Let Freedom Ring,” is shown with Cathy and James McConn, Mike O’Dea and Pat and Tim Von Dohlen.

The John Paul II Life Center’s mission is to build a Culture of Life by: 1) providing cutting-edge Ob/Gyn medical care at our Vitae Clinic, 2) offering 3D/4D sonograms to women in crisis pregnancies, and 3) educating clergy, couples and youth. JPII Board: Tim & Pat Von Dohlen - Chris & Sheri Danze Dr. & Mrs. Jeremy Kalamarides - John & Nancy Carrano

Building a Culture of Life!

1600 W. 38th St., Suite 115 Austin, TX 78731 512-407-2900 2012 Fall Newsletter.indd 4

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John Paul II Life Center Fall Newsletter  

News and events from the John Paul II Life Center in Austin, Texas.

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