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MARCH 28, 2021

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THE OFFICIAL NEWSPAPER OF THE ROMAN CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF ORANGE n OCCATHOLIC.COM

UP TO THE CHALLENGE CATHOLIC CHARITIES OF ORANGE COUNTY IS ADJUSTING TO CHANGING TIMES WHILE HELPING MORE PEOPLE THAN EVER. PAGE 6

CATHOLIC CHARITIES OF ORANGE COUNTY USES PARISHIONER DONATIONS TO FUND A NUMBER OF COMMUNITY SUPPORT PROGRAMS, INCLUDING THE CANTLAY FOOD DISTRIBUTION CENTER IN SANTA ANA. PHOTO: CHALLENGE RODDIE


MARCH 28, 2021

CONTENTS

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HEART OF THE CITY

Christ Cathedral’s community of young adults continue to come together during COVID to affirm their faith.

CONFIRMATIONS DURING COVID

The ancient tradition continues with a few adjustments to accommodate for new safety protocols.

HEALTHY STUDENTS AT ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST

A COVID-safe social event helps students stay connected with their peers with music, dancing and snacks.

PLUS

Guest Editorial, Weekly Readings, Moments In Our Journey

ORANGE COUNTY CATHOLIC MISSION STATEMENT The Orange County Catholic Newspaper seeks to illuminate and animate the journey of faith for Catholics within the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange – building solidarity among the faithful and inviting a deeper understanding and involvement in the mission of Christ – through the timely sharing of news, commentary and feature content in an engaging, accessible and compelling format.

ORANGE COUNTY CATHOLIC

The Official Newspaper of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange Diocese of Orange Pastoral Center, 13280 Chapman Ave., Garden Grove 92840 Publisher: The Most Reverend Kevin W. Vann, Bishop of Orange Executive Editor: Tracey Kincaid, tkincaid@rcbo.org Editor: Kimberly Porrazzo, webeditor@occatholic.com New Ideas: storyideas@rcbo.org Delivery Problems: occatholicsupport@occatholic.com

ADVERTISING Director of Custom Content: Caroline Wong, cawong@scng.com

SCNG CUSTOM CONTENT Managing Editor: Caitlin Adams

Art Director: Fernando M. Donado

Delivered weekly to parishes and homes throughout Orange County, Calif., Orange County Catholic is published by SCNG Custom Content, a division of Southern California News Group that offers content development and design expertise to businesses and nonprofit institutions. The Orange County Catholic editorial staff and editorial council are responsible for the content contained herein. Events and products advertised in Orange County Catholic do not carry the implicit endorsement of the Diocese of Orange or SCNG Custom Content.

OCCatholic.com

OCCatholicNews

@OCCCatholicNews


GUEST EDITORIAL

PROMOTING JUSTICE BY EDWARD ‘NED’ DOLEJSI INTERIM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR CALIFORNIA CATHOLIC CONFERENCE

This is the second article in a series celebrating the 50th anniversary of the founding of the California Catholic Conference.

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FTER MORE THAN TWO decades as executive director of the California Catholic Conference, I thank God for the privilege of allowing me to play a part in bringing Catholic values to the public square. These values were summarized beautifully by Benedict XVI in Deus Caritas Est: “A just society must be the achievement of politics, not of the Church. Yet

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the promotion of justice through efforts to bring about openness of mind and will to the demands of the common good is something which concerns the Church deeply.” As John Paul II, Benedict and, now Francis have told us, Catholics are called to be a political voice for the common good and the infinite worth of every PHOTO: CATHY JOYCE, CATHOLIC HERALD MAGAZINE human being – especially those who are poor, struggling or marginalized. together, we make a difference. That is the mission of the laity. BishThe Catholic Conference facilitates ops offer moral guidance and prayerful this by working with elected officials support, but the laity take the lead. and government entities on a set of Thus, the most important role of the priorities established by the bishops of Conference is to empower the Catholic the state. Those priorities are: respect laity to speak up for human life, human for life, economic, environmental and dignity and the common good. Catholics social justice, education, family life, faith comprise nearly 30 percent of California’s in the public square, immigration and population. When we raise our voices restorative justice. 

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The reach is vast. Through lobbying and engagement – both with professional lobbyists and our grassroots, email-based Catholic Legislative Network – we work to protect life from conception to natural death and foster a good society. Simultaneously, we support ways to lift people from poverty through fair labor practices, just tax systems and basic social services. We endeavor to bring restoration and healing to a broken criminal justice system that is overly focused on punishment. The Conference supports policies to uplift families and marriages as the core of a healthy society. We advocate for a well-functioning education system that benefits all children – in public school and in our own Catholic education system.  In short, whatever directly touches the CONTINUES ON PAGE 14


DAILY READINGS AND REFLECTIONS

If we “ enter into

dialogue with the devil, we will be defeated.”

HOLY WEEK

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OR THE PALM SUNDAY GOSPEL, we return to the Gospel according to Mark. The account of the Passion takes up nearly one-third of Mark’s entire Gospel and, of all the evangelists, he is the one who presents the details most graphically. He depicts the humanity of Jesus most intensely, describing his sufferings thoroughly. Mark portrays Jesus as a complete fulfillment of the “Suffering Servant” of Isaiah, the obedient, humble slave dying on a cross of whom Paul speaks in Philippians. But it is important to remember that we call this “Holy Week” and not “sad week” or “suffering week,” for each of the readings today, even the lamentations of the psalm, end in the promise of the strength and hope that is granted by God to those who faithfully give of themselves in love. As we enter into this week through these readings, we must reflect deeply on the sufferings of Jesus, but still be confident in the joy of risen, eternal life that awaits all of us who faithfully walk with him through these days. Copyright © J. S. Paluch Co. C

- Pope Francis

SAINT PROFILE

HESYCHIUS OF JERUSALEM

DIED 423

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T. HESYCHIUS WAS A PRIEST WHO wrote about the Bible in the liturgy. He viewed Scripture as “perfect wisdom, the point of departure and the point of arrival to which the whole of our existence should be conformed.” Hesychius preached on Easter at the place of the crucifixion, exalting the cross and Christ’s victory. Like St. Cyril of Jerusalem, he taught a realistic doctrine of the Eucharist, which he regarded as a sacrifice identical with that of the cross. Hesychius taught that Christ was present to transform us through our inner absorption of his whole being. “Keep yourselves free from sin so that everyday you nay share in the mystic meal; by doing so our bodies become the body of Christ.”C

READINGS FOR THE WEEK

PHOTOS: CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE, SHUTTERSTOCK

MONDAY

TUESDAY

WEDNESDAY

THURSDAY

FRIDAY

SATURDAY

SUNDAY

IS 42:1-7; PS 27:1-3, 13-14; JN 12:1-11

IS 49:1-6; PS 71:1-6, 15, 17; JN 13:21-33, 36-38

IS 50:4-9A; PS 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34; MT 26:1425

IS 61:1-3A, 6A, 8B-9; PS 89:21-22, 25, 27; RV 1:5-8; LK 4:16-21

GIS 52:13 — 53:12; PS 31:2, 6, 12-13, 15-17, 25; HEB 4:1416; 5:7-9; JN 18:1 — 19:42

GN 1:1 — 2:2 [1:1, 26-31A]; PS 104:1-2, 5-6, 10, 12, 13-14, 24, 35; OR PS 33:4-7, 12-13, 20-22

ACTS 10:34A, 3743; PS 118:1-2, 16-17, 22-23; COL 3:1-4 OR 1 COR 5:6B-8; JN 20:1-9 OR MK 16:1-7

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FEATURE

UP TO THE CHALLENGE

CATHOLIC CHARITIES OF ORANGE COUNTY IS ADJUSTING TO CHANGING TIMES WHILE HELPING MORE PEOPLE THAN EVER BY LARRY URISH

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ERVING PEOPLE IN NEED HAS been a core tenet of the Catholic way, and for more than 44 years the Diocese has assisted struggling children, adults, families and communities. Spearheading this ongoing mission is Catholic Charities of Orange County, which provides all manner of help: food distribution and nutrition education, immigration and citizenship assistance, counseling and psychotherapy, and much more. As the first quarter of 2021 comes to an end, CCOC’s challenge to help ease the suffering of others, regardless of their background or religious affiliation, is greater than ever. More O.C. residents require help, due to the medical, economic and emotional fallout of the COVID pandemic. But CCOC is up to the challenge. “Many of those we now help worked in the services industries, in restaurants, hotels and personal care businesses like salons,” says Ellen Roy, Catholic Charities of Orange County’s executive director. “They lost their business or job in the past year. Demand for our services will continue to go up post-COVID,” she adds, noting that the need for food-distribution, counseling and immigration services in particular is very high. “More people are hungry, depressed and upset.” The manner in which CCOC delivers its services has changed. One example, Roy says, is the way food is provided at the Cantlay Food Distribution Center. “Before the pandemic, people would

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THE CANTLAY FOOD DISTRIBUTION CENTER IN SANTA ANA IS OPEN TUESDAY THROUGH THURSDAY, 7 A.M. TO NOON. PHOTO: CHALLENGE RODDIE

walk inside and pick the food they needed. When COVID hit, we had to switch to a drive-through service. PreCOVID, we’d help 200 to 300 families a week. Now, with drive-through, we’re up to 2,700 a week.” (Located at 2020 W. Chestnut Ave., in Santa Ana, Cantlay is open from Tuesday through Thursday, from 7 a.m. to noon.) “Today we’re always in need of volunteers to pass out food,” Roy says. “It’s one of our bigger challenges. You’re inside the pantry and you have to put [a food order] into a grocery cart. Then you move it outside and load it into the cars. It’s a workout. The volunteers are the heartbeat of this service. We couldn’t do

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it by ourselves.” The pandemic has also changed the operation of CCOC’s CampReCreation, in the past a weeklong getaway for clients with special needs and their loved ones. “Today we now only have one-day events, with different themes,” Roy says. “We had Christmas with Santa, Halloween and a day with Easter baskets. We’re also looking to give more support to caregivers at the camp. That includes counseling services.” Despite challenges like these, one of Roy’s top priorities is to expand CCOC’s services, particularly in community outreach, a service element that she refers to simply as “emergency assistance.”

Rather than offer acts of temporary aid to deal with singular crises as they crop up, “We need to be a bridge to permanent solutions to help people, not just hand them a gift card to a local fast-food place. People are chronically on the streets, and we want to provide permanent solutions. “Our whole mission with our counseling, immigration [help], food distribution and more is to have people take advantage of all of our services, not just one,” Roy says. “We can make a difference and help lift them out of poverty.” A key long-term strategy, she reiterates, is to furnish this help to those in need on a CONTINUES ON PAGE 7


FEATURE / CATHOLIC FAMILY LIVING CONTINUED FROM PAGE 6

permanent basis. Another CCOC priority involves upgrading and leveraging technology to meet today’s changing needs. For example, the New Hope Crisis Hotline, which receives calls worldwide, is undergoing a significant digital shift. “A lot of our volunteers there were seniors who had to stop coming in after COVID hit,” Roy says. “So we’re getting a new phone system that will allow volunteers to take calls from home. … And we now do virtual counseling, via Zoom. That way we can help more people.” While a life of poverty and stress can be traumatic for Catholic Charities’ many clients, it’s also hard on service providers, notes Roy. “It’s traumatic for them, especially in the areas of immigration help and counseling,” she says, adding that this trauma, regularly shared with staffers, can lead to emotional burnout. “So it’s important that staff be trained to deal with these clients. When we pick up the phone, we often have a person who has experienced trauma. Poverty itself creates trauma. Knowing how to speak with [clients] and comfort them is important.” Roy would like to see Catholic Charities have a closer collaboration with the Diocese, particularly with the local parishes. “We want to work more closely with them, to help them deliver more services to their parishioners and to also make our own services available to them. … Moving forward, it’s important that [O.C. residents] understand who we are and what we do. They’re very generous, but we have to get the word out.” Members of the Diocese can help CCOC’s ongoing mission by volunteering; the critical need at the Cantlay Food Distribution Center is but one example. Visit ccoc.org/about/ volunteer to fill out an online application. And give what you can to those in need by visiting ccoc.org/donate. C

HEART OF THE CITY HUNDREDS OF YOUNG ADULTS, SOCIALLY DISTANCED, CONVENE IN COMMUNITY AT CHRIST CATHEDRAL EACH MONTH BY CATHI DOUGLAS

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F THERE WAS ANY DOUBT that young Catholic adults thirst for Christ and Christian community, the Diocese of Orange’s monthly Heart of the City events prove otherwise. Hundreds of young adults from Orange County, Riverside, San Diego, and Los Angeles continue to flock to Christ Cathedral for the weeknight events – despite the restrictions of the coronavirus pandemic. “Initially the whole goal was to come together and pray,” recalls Gerardo Butalid, a campus minister at Santa Margarita High School who has managed the Heart of the City events for the past three years. “We were extremely excited about the response. One of the biggest surprises was the amount of zeal and ‘yes’ that a lot of people give to the ministry.” Advertised on Instagram at @ hrtofthecty_ or instagram.com/hrtofthecty_ and on Facebook at facebook. com/SoCalCatholicYoungAdults, the events feature prayer, community, and the sacraments, as well as adoration and a guest speaker on a particular topic. A creative team collaborates on preparing the space, creating materials, promoting the event on social media, performing music, developing videos, and coordinating the event. Recent topics have included Lent-

A CONCERT PRODUCED AT CHRIST CATHEDRAL FOR HEART OF THE CITY YOUTH MINISTRY IN APRIL 2019. PHOTO: CHALLENGE RODDIE

en-based issues, such as prayer, fasting, Sabbath, and Scripture. At present, the free time for young people to socialize is limited because of the pandemic, and seating is socially distanced, Butalid notes. Normally held in the Cultural Center, the events now take place in the atrium area outside the cathedral. Cecilia Phan, the diocesan Youth and Young Adult Ministry coordinator, points out that the diocese isn’t the only place offering prayer and worship to young people and says she’s impressed with the commitment of those involved in the Heart of the City community. “These young adults share a larger vision,” Phan says. “They truly believe that God is calling them to serve their community.” Guest speakers rotate and the events are a community effort, rather than the brainchild of a single individual. “Often we found that in youth ministry, if you have an engaging and popular, charismatic leader and that person leaves, the ministry dies,” she observes. “Heart of the City is not about any one person; a lot of young adults have come

to the forefront and taken ownership of their faith. “They show up and stay for up to five hours, give their best and their all – it’s a beautiful representation of what you can do given an investment of time and resources and a dream.” Phan says the group wants to plan a weekend conference in the fall where young Catholic adults can further deepen their community through prayer. Butalid says young adults often are quick to give to lay organizations, but hesitate to help in their parishes. “Here, they have a stake in what the Church does and who she is,” he notes. “They don’t feel empowered at their parishes. I fear sometimes that if Catholics don’t feel that empowerment, they’ll find somewhere else to use their talents.” What sets Heart of the City apart, he adds, is that Jesus is always at the center of the events and community. “Young adult culture is motivated by different things, but Jesus is still the king of what’s happening in Orange County. We make sure we put Him at the center of it.” For more information, email hrtofthecity@gmail.com. C

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FEATURE

CONFIRMATIONS DURING COVID

CONFIRMATION 2021 HAS SOME UPDATES, INCLUDING MORE PARTICIPANTS BY NICOLE GREGORY

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OW WILL CONFIRMATION season look this year? Now that parishes have experience celebrating during the pandemic, this year’s confirmations will be special in new ways while still adhering to key aspects. Confirmation season is fast approaching and families may be wondering how it’s all going to work with the pandemic still making large gatherings a health threat. But after a year of living with Covid-related restrictions, parishes have learned a lot about how to worship and celebrate special days while following safety precautions—and confirmations will take place just as they did last year, with a few updates so that more people can participate. “Last year the Bishop delegated to pastors faculties to confirm teens through the end of the liturgical year, which was November 27,” explains Lesa Truxaw, director of the Office for Worship in the Diocese of Orange. Many parishes held confirmations outdoors in church parking lots with everyone standing six feet apart, all wearing masks. Families were disappointed not to have the Bishop present or to enjoy large celebrations, but the confirmations still featured memorable moments. This year will be slightly different. “Pastors are once again delegated to confirm teens, but this year it will be from the second Sunday of Easter through July 30,” says Truxaw. “Parishes can request a Bishop to celebrate confirmation with them if Bishop’s

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NICHOLAS MILLER, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS UNCLE AND SPONSOR CLIFFORD MILLER, IS ANOINTED WITH SACRED CHRISM BY AUXILIARY BISHOP ANDRZEJ J. ZGLEJSZEWSKI OF ROCKVILLE CENTRE, N.Y., DURING A CONFIRMATION CEREMONY AUG. 20, 2020, AT MARIA REGINA CHURCH IN SEAFORD, N.Y., AMID THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC. PHOTO: GREGORY A. SHEMITZ / CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

schedule can accommodate.” One thing is certain: There will be no confirmations via Zoom. “Sacramental celebrations have to be in person,” Truxaw emphasizes. “Reception of Holy Communion has to be in person. Celebrations accommodate for the pandemic by enforcing social distancing. And an option was given to us from Rome to anoint teens with a cotton ball or Q-tip should that be desired for safety reasons.” Masks, however are not optional.

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“Masks are a given,” Truxaw says. “The Bishop’s mandate for mask wearing is for the common good, not just for the person wearing the mask.” Each parish will celebrate differently. “Parishes are having to get creative and make decisions on how best to safely celebrate the Sacraments with their community,” says Armando Cervantes, director of Youth & Young Adults and Director de Ministerio Hispano. “Some parishes are having several Confirmation Masses in order to keep the number of

people at a safe level. Other parishes are livestreaming the Mass so families can safely watch. Other parishes are choosing to have the Mass outdoors to be able to increase the number of people that can attend.” Despite these variations, the confirmations will be as meaningful as ever. “The Mass will be special for kids and parents because they are receiving the Sacrament,” says Cervantes. “Covid does not negate the graces poured out from CONTINUES ON PAGE 9


SOCIAL MEDIA / FEATURE orangediocese • follow March 20, 2021 orangediocese In the latest episode of Sounds from the Sanctuary, Composer Alan Terricciano takes an in-depth look at his new work “Voices in a Quiet Cathedral.” Inspired by @christcathedralca, listen to the background story behind each moment of this stunningly serene music performed by our host David Ball. Listen today in the following link: https://occatholic.com/episode10sounds-from-the-sanctuary-voicesin-a-quiet-cathedral/ #OCCatholic #OCCatholicRadio #SoundsfromtheSanctuary

BISHOP DANIEL E. FLORES OF BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS, POSES FOR A GROUP PHOTO JULY 26, 2020, AFTER CONFIRMATIONS AT SAN FELIPE DE JESUS PARISH. PHOTO COURTESY BISHOP DANIEL FLORES, DIOCESE OF BROWNSVILLE / CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE CONTINUED FROM PAGE 8

orangediocese • follow March 20, 2021 orangediocese St. Joseph Liturgical Art Collection in the Diocese of Orange Across the Diocese there are beautiful statues and artwork on display in honor of St. Joseph. In celebration of the Year of St. Joseph and the Feast of St. Joseph, we’ve created this slideshow of Joseph liturgical art that you can see at your local parish. #OCCatholic

To report sexual abuse by clergy or church personnel please call: 1 (800) 364–3064 Healing and Hope After Abortion: 1 (800) 722–4356 New Hope Crisis Counseling Hot Line (24/7): 1 (714) NEW–HOPE or 1 (714) 639–4673

the Sacrament.” And the restrictions have led to some positives. “Livestreaming celebrations could increase participation and that can be a benefit for some families,” says Truxaw. “Rather than look at it as a disappointment, I choose to look at it that we are blessed by the opportunity to gather and celebrate. Some parishes, due to the  size of their physical churches, limit the  number of people who can celebrate in a liturgy—even when we’re not in a pandemic. This year gives a lot more flexibility to Confirmations.” All the key parts of Confirmation will take place, including the two years of preparation for teens, and the taking of a saint’s name. “Teens taking a saint’s name can still happen,” says Truxaw. “As part of their catechetical process they do research on a saint and can  take that saint’s name. It’s one more person who we can look to for help, someone who has gone before us providing an example of how to live a holy life.” Teens age 19 and older are considered adults and are confirmed at Pentacost  by the pastor. “The liturgy itself has several points that touch people,” she goes on to say.

“One is during the Confirmation prayer when the Bishop calls down the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The most powerful moment is the actual anointing, with the sponsor standing beside or behind a young person, touching their shoulder.” Truxaw says her hope is that it’s a prayerful experience for all involved. “I hope it is not just a perfunctory, but that people come with open hearts and open minds.” Confirmation can resonate for participants long afterward. “The reality is not everyone has a ‘zap moment,’” says Truxaw, “so I don’t want to downplay the unfolding sacramental celebration that happens afterward, when a person notices a strength and ability to do certain things that wasn’t there before.” How this happens is a mystery. “Noticing God’s action in your life is what we’re talking about,” she says. “Reflecting back on the celebration helps us recognize God’s action—which isn’t always a shout; it can be a whisper. My hope is that families will take the time to reflect with their teen what that means a month after. Let’s mark this celebration to help our teens and ourselves to reflect on God’s action in our lives.” C

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DIOCESAN NEWS

CHRIST CATHEDRAL CAMPUS SERVES AS SPECIAL VACCINATION SITE

BISHOP TIMOTHY FREYER ON MARCH 10, 2021 OFFERED THE OPENING PRAYER AT THE COUNTY OF ORANGE PRESS CONFERENCE CONCERNING ITS NEW MOBILE COVID-19 VACCINATION SITE AT CHRIST CATHEDRAL. PHOTO COURTESY COUNTY OF ORANGE BY BRADLEY ZINT

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HE CHRIST CATHEDRAL campus on March 10 hosted a County of Orange press conference to announce the campus as a new mobile COVID-19 clinic vaccination site. The clinic is appointment-based through the Othena system at othena.com. County officials, each Wednesday

for a series of weeks, plan to provide 500 to 1,000 people with the Pfizer vaccine as part of an effort to vaccinate people living in ZIP codes hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Bishop Timothy Freyer, who serves on the OC Health Care Agency’s Coronavirus Vaccine Taskforce, provided an opening prayer and remarks at the outset of the conference. The event was covered by multiple regional media outlets. C

SEEKING FOSTER FAMILIES BY STAFF

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OSTERALL, A LEADER in recruitment for foster families among faith communities, is partnering on a Southern California foster care campaign titled

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THE CULTURAL CENTER ON THE CAMPUS OF CHRIST CATHEDRAL SERVED AS THE SITE OF THE MARCH 10, 2021 COUNTY OF ORANGE PRESS CONFERENCE ANNOUNCING THE CAMPUS AS ITS NEW MOBILE COVID-19 VACCINATION SITE. PHOTO BY BRADLEY ZINT.

“Love Has No Limits.” Hand in hand with foster care leadership and agencies, a large-scale, multicounty recruitment campaign is underway through the month of May. More than 1,000 faith communities are expected to join the call to recruit individuals and families to foster and adopt. The need is profound. Thousands of children will be entering the foster care system as a result of the pandemic shutdown, and hundreds more are stuck in the system wanting nothing greater than to be adopted by a forever family. To sign up as a participating faith PHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK community, fosterall.org. C

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CATHOLIC SCHOOL NEWS

SENIORS SIGN UP

MATER DEI AND JSERRA CELEBRATE 14 ATHLETES AT SAFE SIGNING CEREMONIES BY JENELYN RUSSO

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HE CELEBRATION OF high school senior athletes who have committed to playing their respective sports at the collegiate level continued on Feb. 3, as Mater Dei High School and JSerra Catholic High School both held safe ceremonies on campus. Mater Dei saw 10 student-athletes commit across four sports, including three from the Monarchs’ football program. Offensive guard Terrence Caldwell will be playing for the Ivy League at Cornell University. Four-star outside linebacker Raesjon Davis signed with USC, and running back Marceese Yetts is headed to the United States Air Force Academy. From the baseball diamond, teammates Scott Morales and Chase Nichols both signed to continue their playing careers at California State University, San Bernardino. William Rice will play for JSERRA HEAD FOOTBALL COACH PAT HARLOW SPEAKS AT THE SCHOOL’S SIGNING DAY EVENT. PHOTO COURTESY OF JSERRA CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL Newman University in Wichita, Kansas. Mater Dei’s lacrosse program had “The student-athletes and families Genova is headed to the United States success and growth in their faith, intellect three athletes sign college letters of enjoyed watching their athletes take the Military Academy at West Point. Offenand character.” intent. From the boys’ program, Tyler next step in their careers. This year has sive tackle Mason Murphy signed with JSerra Athletic Director Chris Ledyard Curry committed to Grove City College. been tough for everyone, and to be able USC, and Jordan Washington committed also extended well wishes to the senior Monarch girls lacrosse player Lauren to give them this special event was truly to Dartmouth University. Lions. Friedman signed with Amherst College, priceless.” “We are very proud of Mason, Jaden, “We want to congratulate Coach Harand teammate Skyler Nielsen is headed JSerra’s football program saw four of Gary and Jordan for their efforts to earn low, JSerra Football and these fine young to Columbia University. their senior athletes make commitments scholarships to continue their athletmen on their signing on National Letter Rounding out Mater Dei’s list of sign- to continue their playing careers at the ic and academic careers,” says JSerra Intent Day,” says JSerra Athletic Director ees was softball player Gabriella Heftved next level. Football Head Coach Pat Harlow. “These Chris Ledyard. “These are remarkable who will be continuing her playing career Tight end Gary Morrison participated young men are great ambassadors of our young men that epitomize JSerra football at Hamilton College. in a December signing day ceremony on JSerra community. They have shown that with grit, determination and hustle. It al“It was such a great event,” says Mater campus, committing to Sacramento State hard work, determination and perseverways is an honor to see these young men Dei Athletic Director Amanda Waters. University. Outside linebacker Jaden ance pay off. We wish them continued and women and all they aspire to be.”  C

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CATHOLIC SCHOOL NEWS

HEALTHY CHILDREN OF GOD AT SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST CHURCH

A CHANCE TO IMPROVE EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING AND HAVE SOME FUN

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ITH A CONTINUED emphasis on supporting the needs of the whole student, St. John the Baptist Catholic School encouraged its junior high students to “...dance, so when you get to heaven the angels know what to do with you.” That’s right, in spite of the pandemic, St. John’s found a way to host a dance for its 7th and 8th grade students. “In a world where our young people seem more disconnected than ever, hosting a dance just seemed to be the right thing to do,” said Principal Paula Viles. “Technology continues to provide more and more opportunities to communicate over the internet, the pandemic is pushing our society to rely heavily on media driven resources, and our young people just aren’t getting the face-to-face interaction they truly need.” So, St. John’s faculty and administration made it happen. The dance took place outside in six socially distanced tents so stable groups could remain separated from each other and at the same time be together. The live DJ provided appropriate music and other fun social activities that allowed the junior high students to enjoy the afternoon while staying healthy and safe. Students wore their masks and individually packaged snacks and beverages were served. “In order to allow our students the opportunity to grow in their socialization skills, we felt the extra effort was worth it,” said Fr. Damien Giap, the

FATHER DAMIEN GIAP, SCHOOL RECTOR, (CENTER) IS FLANKED BY TWO ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST STUDENTS DURING THE SCHOOL’S FEB. 26 JUNIOR HIGH DANCE. PHOTO COURTESY ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST SCHOOL.

school’s rector. “Friday, Feb. 26, was the Solemnity of the anniversary of our church’s dedication, so we were able to give our students this special gift during the current season of Lent. The

social emotional health of our students is a primary concern right now and the development of social skills, cultivation of positive emotions, and some time to practice face-to-face communications

skills seemed to make good sense.” “We need to keep our children healthy and thriving,” said Mrs. Viles, “spiritually, academically, physically and social emotionally.” C

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GUEST EDITORIAL CONTINUED FROM PAGE 4

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lives of the children of God in California concerns the Conference. We do not have unlimited resources, however, and we don’t contribute to candidates or make endorsements, but we can raise a voice for life and dignity through our work.  Our values transcend partisan divides. Catholic social teaching does not fit into any party platform. The common good requires us to bridge differences and appeal to our common humanity. The Church brings more than moral principles to its advocacy.  We bring the lived experience of working in the world as Christ’s hands and feet. Our parishes, schools, Catholic Charities, Catholic health care, lay associations and other social ministries serve millions of poor and marginalized people of all faiths.  We help raise their voice – the “encounter” that Pope Francis has emphasized throughout his papacy.  We bring their concerns to the most powerful people in Sacramento and D.C. Yet our efforts are increasingly challenged by special interest groups whose voices are magnified by funding and a partisan supermajority in an ever more culturally and politically progressive state. Still, Deus Caritas Est urges us to continue our mission, acknowledging that politics “can never be completely free of the danger of a certain ethical blindness caused by the dazzling effect of power and special interests.” Importantly, we are not just called to be prophetic in the public square but to change the world for the good. We must push against a culture that has replaced commitment to the common good with a myopic focus on individual rights. We see this in the expression “I personally believe that abortion is wrong, but I don’t have the right to impose my beliefs on others.” A belief ceases to be “personal” when it harms someone. Laws exist to protect vulnerable people from the consequences on another’s choices. At the same time, we uphold con-

science rights for those whose beliefs may be unpopular but inflict no harm on others. For instance, just as doctors cannot be required to participate in the execution of convicts, healthcare workers and hospitals should not be required to participate in the killing of unborn children or physician-assisted suicide. The Conference also works in a variety of pastoral areas: Our initiative “Caring for the Whole Person,” for instance, enables parishioners to help the seriously ill and dying feel loved, worthy and cared for when they are at their most vulnerable.  The Bishops have, over the last few years, publicy addressed mental health, racism, Native American and environmental concerns. In addition to advocacy on restorative justice, with the help of a CCHD grant administered by the Conference, we have worked with California dioceses to open new avenues of restoration and healing for those caught in the criminal justice system. We do this together by working with victim groups, by reaching out to the grieving and hurt and by working to recruit chaplains for the incarcerated.  An initiative against racism launched last year, with listening sessions that are leading to actions for racial reconciliation and justice in arch/dioceses around the state. Pope Francis said it well in his apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium: “I ask God to give us more politicians capable of sincere and effective dialogue aimed at healing the deepest roots – and not simply the appearances – of the evils in our world! Politics, though often denigrated, remains a lofty vocation and one of the highest forms of charity, inasmuch as it seeks the common good.” As Deus Caritas Est assures us, “in the end, we are only instruments in the Lord’s hands; and this knowledge frees us from the presumption of thinking that we alone are responsible for building a better world. In all humility we will do what we can, and in all humility we will entrust the rest to the Lord.”   Emphasis on the “will do what we can.” C


Moments MomentsininourourJourney Journey

Father Christopher Smith and Monsignor John Urell, during a recording session in the OC Catholic Radio studio, high atop the Tower of Hope on the Christ Cathedral Campus. Father Chris is the Episcopal vicar and rector at Christ Cathedral and hosts “Cathedral Square” each week. Monsignor Urell is pastor at St. Timothy Catholic Church in Laguna Niguel. The two were classmates in seminary and were ordained priests on the same day in 1978. Editor’s note: Listen to “Cathedral Square” at occatholic.com. Click on “radio.” —Submitted by Jim Governale

Send your photos that capture Catholic life in your parish community to: webeditor@occatholic.com

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OC Catholic 3.28.21  

The official newspaper of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange.

OC Catholic 3.28.21  

The official newspaper of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange.