Diocese of Fall River
F riday , March 30, 2012
The Romeiros’ journey: Not a tradition but a lifelong pilgrimage By Dave Jolivet, Editor
FALL RIVER — Some people think it’s a tradition. It’s not. Some think it’s a procession. It’s not. Some think people can enter or exit whenever they choose. Not when it’s performed correctly. A Romaria, a Lenten pilgrimage with a strong Portuguese influence, can trace its roots back to the island of St. Michael in the Azores in the early 1500s. The yearly pilgrimage began as the result of a devastating earthquake on the island in 1522. The residents established the practice as a way of ensuring that such a catastrophe would not repeat itself. Romeiros (pilgrims) don a shawl, representing when Jesus
was brought before Pontius Pilate, a scarf to represent the Crown of Thorns, and they hold a staff like the one given to Christ during His Passion. The participants walk together through the streets and roads singing holy songs and praying. The walk leads them to various Catholic churches where they request permission to enter and pray for a litany of special intentions given to them before the journey. In Taunton, the pilgrimage took place last Saturday. In New Bedford, the Romaria is tomorrow, and Good Friday will find the pilgrims walking through Fall River. Turn to page 15 TALKING TRIDUUM — Msgr. James P. Moroney, executive secretary of the Vox Clara Committee and former executive director of the USCCB Secretariat for the Liturgy, recently presented a workshop on revisions to the prayers of the Easter Triduum as part of the newly-revised third edition of the English Roman Missal at St. Mary’s Parish in Mansfield. (Photo by Kenneth J. Souza)
Revised Roman Missal enhances prayers of Easter Triduum
By Kenneth J. Souza Anchor Staff
ahead of the sun — Men wearing shawls and carrying staffs pray as they walk along a Freetown road at sunrise last Saturday. The men are participating in a Romaria, a faith-filled expression of their devotion to Christ’s sufferings. (Photo by Dave Jolivet)
Peter Shaughnessy to head Bishop Stang High School
NORTH DARTMOUTH — Peter Shaughnessy has been appointed president/ principal of Bishop Stang High School, North Dartmouth, in a new governing structure to take effect July 1. He Peter will succeed Theresa Dougall, the Shaughnessy
current president, who will retire at the end of June. In the new governing model Shaughnessy will become the school’s chief administrative officer, a position that will consoliTheresa date the responDougall Turn to page 19
MANSFIELD — Mirroring the triplex structure of many of the prayers in the Liturgy itself, Msgr. James P. Moroney, executive secretary of the Vox Clara Committee and former executive director of the USCCB Secretariat for the Liturgy, returned to the Fall River Diocese for a third in-
formational workshop on the revised English Roman Missal — this time focusing his attention on the prayers and rites of Holy Week and the Easter Triduum. Calling the new rites of the Easter Triduum “rich and beautiful,” Msgr. Moroney said they offer a clearer understanding of the importance of the events during Holy Week.
“In the Roman Missal you used last year, the rites were shallow and quick and centered on what you were supposed to do,” he said to a group of diocesan priests, deacons and laity gathered inside the parish hall of St. Mary’s Church in Mansfield. “Of all the parts of the Roman Missal … the new translation Turn to page 14
Diocesan priests prepare to lead faithful into Holy Week, Easter B y B ecky Aubut A nchor Staff
NEW BEDFORD — Palm Sunday celebrates Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem. As parishes in the Fall River Diocese prepare for Palm Sunday, Father Marek Chmurski, pastor of St. Lawrence Martyr Parish in New Bedford, is putting the finishing touches on his parish’s celebration, including a procession of the entire congregation before Mass that will begin outdoors and make its way around the church before going inside. “It makes it very unique because people don’t often see processions and with the palms and the priests; that’s very impressive thing to see around our parish,” said Father Chmurski. “It makes our church visible.” Processions are a very meaningful way of expressing your faith, he said, because “a procession always symbolizes a pilgrimage, a moving
from one place to another.” Having come originally from Poland, Father Chmurski said in his native country, the faithful put an emphasis on pilgrimages, with many pilgrimages seeing participants walking miles before being put up for the night in different homes. People look forward to receiving pilgrims in their home, said Father Chmurski because it’s a beautiful reminder of faith and sharing faith with others. Pilgrimages are not holidays and often weather or discomfort from walking so long may be part of the journey, he said, “but you learn about the meaning of sacrifice. Here in the Western world, people probably don’t think much about those things but historically, from the Christian perspective, they are very meaningful and we need to remind ourselves of that.” Father John Murray of St. Joseph’s Parish in Turn to page 12
Pope Benedict XVI in Cuba
March 30, 2012
Pope calls for patience in fight to bring freedom to communist Cuba
ABOARD THE PAPAL FLIGHT TO MEXICO (CNS) — En route to Latin America for his second papal visit to the region, Pope Benedict XVI called for patience with the Catholic Church’s effort to promote freedom in communist Cuba, and criticized Catholics who participate in illegal drug trade or who ignore their moral responsibilities to seek social justice. The pope, flying to Mexico March 23, followed his usual practice of taking a few preselected questions from reporters on the papal plane. Responding to a question about human rights in Cuba, where he arrived March 26, and where opposition leaders have been arrested after publicly appealing for a meeting with him, Pope Benedict said that the “Church is always on the side of freedom, freedom of conscience, freedom of religion.” “Marxist ideology as it was conceived no longer responds to the truth today, we can no longer respond this way to construct a society,” the pope said. But the pope said that the “path of collaboration and constructive dialogue,” which his predecessor Blessed John Paul II initiated with the communist regime, “is long and demands patience.” “We want to help in the spirit of dialogue to avoid traumas and to help move toward a fraternal and just society” in Cuba, he said. In answer to a question about
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dramatic inequalities of wealth in Latin America, Pope Benedict lamented what he called a widespread moral “schizophrenia” that stresses personal morality while ignoring social conscience. “We see in Latin America and elsewhere that not a few Catholics have a certain schizophrenia with regard to individual and public morality,” he said. “In their private lives they are Catholics, believers, but in public life they follow other paths that don’t respond to the great values of the Gospel necessary for the foundation of a just society.” While that assessment might have seemed to echo left-wing critiques of the oligarchies that dominate the politics and economies of many countries in the region, the pope declined a reporter’s invitation to endorse even a non-Marxist, nonviolent version of liberation theology, a movement which he severely criticized as head of the Vatican’s doctrinal office in the 1980s and ’90s. “The Church is not a political power, it is not a party,” the pope said. “It is a moral reality, a moral power.” Accordingly, the pope said, “the first job of the Church is to educate consciences, both in individual ethics and public ethics.” He called for promoting Catholic social teaching even to nonbelievers by an appeal to a “common rationality” which he said could overcome social divisions. OFFICIAL NEWSPAPER OF THE DIOCESE OF FALL RIVER Vol. 56, No. 13
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SEA OF HUMANITY — A crowd packs Antonio Maceo Revolution Square as Pope Benedict XVI arrives in the popemobile to celebrate Mass in Santiago de Cuba, Cuba, March 26. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)
At Mass, pope recognizes Cubans’ struggles, calls freedom a necessity
SANTIAGO DE CUBA, Cuba (CNS) — Celebrating an outdoor Mass on his first day in Cuba, Pope Benedict XVI acknowledged the struggles of the country’s Catholics after half a century of communism and described human freedom as a necessity for both salvation and social justice. The pope spoke March 26 in Antonio Maceo Revolution Square, in Cuba’s second-largest city. He had arrived in the country a few hours earlier, after spending three days in Mexico. The Vatican had said the square would hold 200,000 people and it was full; several thousand also filled the streets leading to the square. Cuban President Raul Castro, who welcomed the pope at the airport, sat in the front row for Mass. Tens of thousands of those at the Mass were wearing white Tshirts welcoming the pope as the “pilgrim of charity”; many wore baseball caps to protect them from the hot sun. Before the pope arrived in the popemobile, the original statue of Our Lady of Charity of El Cobre, Cuba’s patroness, was driven atop a white truck through the cheering crowd. The statue then was enthroned near the papal altar.
In his homily, Pope Benedict recognized the “effort, daring and self-sacrifice” required of Cuban Catholics “in the concrete circumstances of your country and at this moment in history.” Though now more tolerant of religious practice than in earlier decades, the communist state continues to prevent the construction of new churches and strictly limits Catholic access to state media. In a possible allusion to reports that the regime had prevented political opponents from attending the Mass, Pope Benedict extended his customary mention of those absent for reasons of age or health to include people who, “for other motives, are not able to join us.” The pope painted a dire picture of a society without faith. “When God is set aside, the world becomes an inhospitable place for man,” he said. “Apart from God, we are alienated from ourselves and are hurled into the void. “Obedience to God is what opens the doors of the world to the truth, to salvation,” the pope said. “Redemption is always this process of the lifting up of the human will to full communion with the divine will.” Taking his theme from the day’s liturgical feast of the Annunciation, when Mary learned that she would conceive and bear the Son of God, the pope emphasized that fulfillment of the Divine plan involved Mary’s free acceptance of her role. “Our God, coming into the world, wished to depend on the free consent of one of His creatures,” Pope Benedict said. “It is touching to see how God not only respects human freedom: He almost seems to require it.” The most specific advice in the pope’s homily regarded a topic familiar to his listeners in the prosperous capitalist coun-
tries of Western Europe and North America: the sanctity of the “family founded on matrimony” as the “fundamental cell of society and an authentic domestic Church.” “You, dear husbands and wives, are called to be, especially for your children, a real and visible sign of the love of Christ for the Church,” Pope Benedict said. “Cuba needs the witness of your fidelity, your unity, your capacity to welcome human life, especially that of the weakest and most needy.” According to the Center for Demographic Studies at the University of Havana, Cuba’s divorce rate has almost tripled in four decades, rising from 22 divorces per 100 marriages in 1970 to 64 in 2009. The country’s parliament is scheduled later this year to consider the legal recognition of same-sex marriage, in response to a campaign led by Mariela Castro, daughter of President Raul Castro. Despite his challenges to Cuban society, Pope Benedict concluded his homily by repeating an earlier call for patience with the Catholic Church’s policy of dialogue and cooperation with the communist regime, a process initiated by Blessed John Paul II during his 1998 visit to Cuba. “May we accept with patience and faith whatever opposition may come,” the pope said. “Armed with peace, forgiveness and understanding, strive to build a renewed and open society, a better society, one more worthy of humanity, and which better reflects the goodness of God.” A 30-year-old woman in a baseball cap who identified herself only as Xichel told Catholic News Service she and about 100 others traveled about 165 miles from Camaguey for the Mass, and she hoped to see the pope in Havana. Older pilgrims traveled by train or bus, she said.
Pope Benedict XVI in Mexico Pope visits in Mexico as ‘pilgrim of faith, of hope, and of love’
March 30, 2012
SILAO, Mexico (CNS) — Arriving in Mexico on his second papal visit to Latin America March 23, Pope Benedict XVI said he came as a “pilgrim of faith, of hope, and of love,” promoting the cause of religious freedom, social progress and the Catholic Church’s charitable works. Bells tolled and the assembled crowd cheered as Pope Benedict XVI appeared through the door of his Alitalia plane at Guanajuato Internal Airport in central Mexico. He was greeted by Mexican President Felipe Calderon and other dignitaries, including Archbishop Jose Martin Rabago of Leon and Archbishop Carlos Aguilar Retes of Tlalnepantla, president of the Mexican bishops’ conference and the Latin American bishops’ council, CELAM. In his remarks at the arrival ceremony, Pope Benedict paid tribute to the Mexican people’s religious faith and reputation for hospitality, but he addressed the main part of his speech to all Latin American nations, noting that most of them “have been commemorating, in recent years, the bicentennial of their independence.” The pope related the three theological virtues of faith, hope and charity to challenges the region faces today. In doing so, the pope highlighted themes that he is likely to address again during his time in Mexico and Cuba. Faith fosters social peace based on respect for human dignity, the pope said, adding that “this dignity is expressed especially in the fundamental right to freedom of religion, in its full meaning and integrity.” That statement has special resonance given that the pope was speaking in the Guanajuato state, heartland of a 1920s re-
bellion by Catholic “Cristero” rebels against an anti-clerical regime. Mexico long prohibited Church-run schools and the public display of clerical and religious garb, but the country’s Senate is now considering an amendment to the constitution that would significantly expand the Church’s freedom in areas, including education. Catholics in Cuba still operate under severe restrictions under the communist government there. Addressing an economically underdeveloped region plagued by violence, corruption and dramatic inequalities of wealth, the pope presented Catholicism as a force for social progress. Christian hope does not only console believers with confidence in an afterlife, he said; it inspires them to “transform the present structures and events which are less than satisfactory and seem immovable or insurmountable, while also helping those who do not see meaning or a future in life.” “This country and the entire continent are called to live their hope in God as a profound conviction, transforming it into an attitude of the heart and a practical commitment to walk together in the building of a better world,” Pope Benedict said. He then noted the concrete help that Catholics, motivated by charity, offer “those who suffer from hunger, lack shelter, or are in need in some way in their life.” This charitable mission “does not compete with other private or public initiatives,” the pope said, and the Church “willingly works with those who pursue the same ends.” That point was particularly relevant to Cuba, where Catholic charities have become notably active in recent years, some-
In Mexico, pope says social change will come with revival of faith
SILAO, Mexico (CNS)— Visiting Latin America for the second time in his pontificate, Pope Benedict XVI offered a message of hope for social progress rooted in a revival of Catholic faith. The overriding message of the pope’s public statements during his three days in Mexico, March 23-26, was that this troubled country, and the region in general, cannot solve their problems — which include poverty, inequality, corruption and violence — by following the prescriptions of secular ideologies. Instead, the pope said, peace and justice in this world require a divinely inspired change in the human heart. “When addressing the deeper dimension of personal and community life, human strategies will not suffice to save us,” the pope said in his homily during an outdoor Mass at Guanajuato Bicentennial Park March 25. “We must have recourse to the One Who alone can give life in its fullness, because He is the essence of life and its author.” Echoing his earlier critiques of liberation theology, a Marxist-influenced movement that found prominent supporters among Latin American Catholics during the 1970s and ’80s, Pope Benedict told reporters accompanying him on the plane from Rome that the “Church is not a political power, it is not a party. It is a moral reality, a moral power.” Yet the pope made it clear that he was not encouraging believers to withdraw into a pri-
vate kind of piety uninvolved with worldly affairs. “The first job of the Church is to educate consciences,” he said, “both in individual ethics and public ethics.” Christian hope, the pope told an audience that included Mexican President Felipe Calderon, does not merely console the faithful with the promise of personal immortality. The theological virtue of hope, he said, inspires Catholics to “transform the present structures and events that are less than satisfactory and seem immovable or insurmountable, while also helping those who do not see meaning or a future in life.” The practical expression of this inspiration, the pope said, is the Church’s extensive charitable activities, which help “those who suffer from hunger, lack shelter, or are in need in some way in their life.” That point seemed particularly relevant to the second half of Pope Benedict’s Latin America visit to Cuba where he marked the 400th anniversary of the country’s Virgin of Charity of El Cobre. Catholic charities in Cuba have become notably active in recent years, sometimes in cooperation with agencies of the state. After half a century of communist government and decades of official atheism there, Pope Benedict could hardly find more powerful evidence for the inadequacy of secular solutions than the Church’s growing role in caring for Cuba’s poor.
times in cooperation with agencies of the communist state. Addressing his Mexican hosts once again as he concluded, Pope Benedict made an apparent reference to the country’s recent fighting among drug traffickers, which has killed an estimated 50,000 people over the past five years. “I will pray especially for those in need,” the pope said, “particularly for those who suffer because of old and new rivalries, resentments and all forms of violence.”
Calderon told the pope, “Mexico feels honored to be the first Spanish-speaking country you’ve visited in (Latin America).” The president touched on the difficulties Mexico has endured in recent years, including the current drought — the worst in 70 years — natural disasters and the H1N1 outbreak in 2009, which compounded an especially difficult economic downturn. He mentioned violence, too, which has claimed nearly 50,000 lives during his administration.
March 30, 2012 The Church in the U.S. Sainthood causes advance for Boys Town founder, other Americans
OMAHA, Neb. (CNS) — Father Edward Flanagan was declared a “Servant of God” during a Mass March 17 at Immaculate Conception Church at Boys Town as the Archdiocese of Omaha formally opened the cause for sainthood for the founder of the home for troubled youths. Omaha Archbishop George J. Lucas presided at the Liturgy and Father Steven Boes, executive director of Boys Town, concelebrated and was homilist. During his homily, Father Boes sat in front of the altar with several Boys Town residents gathered around him, and he described the early days of Father Flanagan’s ministry in downtown Omaha in the early 1900s. Directing the sermon at the youths, he said Father Flanagan helped children in need, and the internationally known ministry that stands as his legacy continues to do the same work. Alluding to the clerical sex abuse scandal, Father Boes said the cause for Father Flanagan’s sainthood appeared to be happening at an opportune time for the Church, which some have perceived in a negative light because of the evil actions of a few priests who have hurt children. “The Church needs to hold up people who held children up,” Father Boes said. At the end of the Mass, Archbishop Lucas formally opened the cause for sainthood, which included the archbishop and five members of a tribunal taking oaths of secrecy and a promise to faithfully execute their duties as they review Father Flanagan’s life and works.
Six people forming theological and historical commissions created for the cause of canonization also took oaths, with each placing one hand on Father Flanagan’s personal Bible. Father Flanagan’s was not the only U.S. sainthood cause to advance in recent weeks. Among the other developments: — The Vatican is reviewing documents that would allow the cause of sainthood to go forward for Cora Evans, a wife, mother, and possible mystic who was baptized Catholic in 1935 after becoming disillusioned with the Mormon faith. — The Diocese of Allentown, Pa., reported that the Vatican has given its formal approval for the canonization process to begin for Jesuit Father Walter Ciszek, a U.S.-born priest who spent many years in Soviet labor camps and ministered clandestinely among the Siberian population after his release. — The Diocese of Raleigh, N.C., opened the diocesan phase of the canonization cause of Maryknoll co-founder Father Thomas Frederick Price March 9. The cause was originally introduced in the Archdiocese of Hong Kong, where Father Price died, but was transferred to the Archdiocese of New York, where the majority of the documentation regarding his life is located, and then to North Carolina, where he was born and spent 25 years in missionary work. Evans, who died in Boulder Creek, Calif., on Mar. 30, 1957, reported visions of Jesus and the saints and a mission from Jesus
to promote the “mystical humanity of Christ,” the idea that Christ is always within us and we should behave always as Christ would, said Mike McDevitt, a parishioner at Our Lady of the Pillar in Half Moon Bay, Calif., who is the promoter of Evans’ cause of sainthood. The spirituality is also focused on praying the Mass. Evans’ two children were baptized with her in Ogden, Utah, and her husband, Mack, became Catholic shortly afterward, with many family and friends following her from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said McDevitt. Born in 1904, she moved to Southern California in 1941 and to Boulder Creek in 1956. “Cora loved the Mormons. She considered the Mormons her heritage people,” McDevitt told Catholic San Francisco, the archdiocesan newspaper. “She wanted them to know who Jesus was and she wanted them to have the Eucharist. She prayed for Mormons.” Evans rejected the Mormon faith in 1924, for what she considered to be false teachings about God, and began a 10-year search for the true religion, according to a biography presented to the Vatican by the Diocese of Monterey in February 2011. She became Catholic shortly after listening to the Catholic radio hour on Dec. 9, 1934, when she was too sick to change the station despite a great aversion to Catholicism, McDevitt said. She went to nearby St. Joseph Catholic Church with questions because what she
heard was nothing like what she had been taught about Catholicism, he said. She was baptized Mar. 30, 1935. Jesus and many saints reportedly appeared multiple times to Evans, according to the two-page chronology sent by Monterey Bishop Richard J. Garcia to the Vatican Congregation for Saints’ Causes. In Father Ciszek’s cause, the Allentown Diocese said materials and documentation sent to the Vatican in 2006 included testimony from 45 witnesses, the Jesuit’s published and unpublished works, and transcription of hundreds of his handwritten documents. An additional 4,000 pages of documentation from the Jesuit archives in the U.S. and Rome, the original store of documents archived at the Father Ciszek Center in Shenandoah, Pa., and other important documents obtained from state records in Russia were sent to the Vatican in 2011. Father Ciszek volunteered to work in Poland in 1939 and fled to the Soviet Union during World War II. Captured by the Soviets as a suspected spy, he was interrogated for years at Moscow’s notorious Lubianka prison, then sent to a Siberian labor camp. After his release years later, he lived and worked in small towns in Siberia, where he heard confessions and celebrated Mass, at risk of being discovered and executed. Presumed dead by his fellow Jesuits, the priest was released in 1963 in a prisoner exchange ne-
gotiated by President John F. Kennedy. He later wrote “With God in Russia,” an account of his years in the Soviet Union, and “He Leadeth Me,” his spiritual memoirs. Father Price, who co-founded the Catholic Foreign Mission Society of America, also called Maryknoll, with Father James A. Walsh in 1911, was the first nativeborn priest from North Carolina. Born Aug. 19, 1860, in Wilmington, N.C., and known as Fred, he was ordained June 20, 1886, for the Apostolic Vicariate of North Carolina, which covered the entire state but only included 800 Catholics. Named in 1887 as pastor of St. Paul Church in New Bern, which included 17 missions in an area covering more than 300 square miles, Father Price asked his bishop in 1896 for permission to start a magazine. Truth magazine, established in Raleigh in 1897, had 17,000 subscribers throughout the country by 1905. After he and his seminary classmate, Father (later Bishop) Walsh, received Vatican permission to create Maryknoll, Father Price departed in 1918 with the first group of Maryknoll missionaries who had been assigned to work in China. He soon died of an infected appendix Sept. 12, 1919. The Diocese of Raleigh said Father Price is being proposed for sainthood because of “his great love of God, his holiness of life, his devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and his faithful dedication to priestly ministry.”
WASHINGTON (CNS) — The U.S. bishops have urged Catholics and “all people of faith” across the nation to observe today as a day of prayer and fasting for religious freedom and conscience protection. The bishops announced the daylong observance in a statement titled “United for Religious Freedom” that was approved March 14 by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Administrative Committee.
They asked Catholics and others to join them in “prayer and penance for our leaders and for the complete protection of our first freedom — religious liberty — which is not only protected in the laws and customs of our great nation, but rooted in the teachings of our great tradition.” The bishops said that among current threats to religious liberty is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services mandate that forces employers, including reli-
gious ones, to provide coverage of contraception/sterilization in their health plans. Prayer resources have been posted on the USCCB website, www.usccb.org. Also, “Prayer for Religious Liberty” prayer cards are available as a downloadable PDF file. The cards are available in English and Spanish, and feature three different images: Mary as the Immaculate Conception, patroness of the U.S.; Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the Americas and the unborn; and St. Thomas More, the patron saint of the legal profession who was martyred for standing up for his religious beliefs. In a letter about the day of prayer addressed to Catholics in their state, Pennsylvania’s bishops said the observance was planned in response “to the assault by the federal government on constitutionally guaranteed religious liberty.” They, too, cited the federal contraceptive mandate, saying it “punished the Church for its firmly held beliefs and consistent teaching.”
U.S. bishops set today as day of prayer, fasting for religious liberty
5 The Church in the U.S. Courthouses, statehouses sites for religious freedom rallies across U.S. March 30, 2012
WASHINGTON (CNS) — Hundreds of people gathered March 23 in front of U.S. courthouses, state capitols and historic sites to support religious freedom and protest a federal mandate they say violates that freedom by requiring most religious employers to provide nocost contraceptive coverage even it is contrary to their beliefs. All of the events, held at noon local time in 143 cities, were part of a nationwide “Stand Up for Religious Freedom” rally organized by the Pro-Life Action League in Chicago and Citizens for a Pro-Life Society, based in Michigan. About 55,000 people participated. In Washington, a rally was held in front of the Washington headquarters of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Reverend Patrick Mahoney, a minister in the Reformed Presbyterian Church who is director of the Christian Defense Coalition, opened it with a prayer. “We are here not with clenched fists but in humility before God,” he said, urging the crowd of about 2,000 to kneel on the paved area in front of the HHS building. “We are here because the faith community cannot be silent when it comes to human rights and we will never comply with an unjust order that violates our faith.” In Philadelphia, the rally took place outside of Independence Hall, the birthplace of American liberty. A large percentage of the 2,300 participants were women, which seemed to contradict the prevailing view that a majority of U.S. women support the contraceptive mandate. Michelle Griffin, a registered nurse at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and a member of Holy Cross Parish in Mount Airy, Pa., was passing out literature at the rally, sponsored the Respect Life Office of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in conjunction with organizations connected with the Pro-Life movement. “It is important to me as a health care provider to have those conscience clauses that will protect me as an individual in accordance with my conscience and not having to go against my conscience,” she told The Catholic Standard & Times, Philadelphia’s archdiocesan newspaper. Kathryn Slaats, who came with a busload of people from St. Patrick Parish in Malvern, Pa., spoke for her group, saying: “We want to tell the government not to tread on our religious freedoms. We must organize, contribute and fight for the right to worship God the way we choose to do so.”
Across the country in San Francisco, Bishop Salvatore J. Cordileone of Oakland, Calif., led the lineup of speakers who addressed close to 500 people outside the federal courthouse; the final crowd tally was 1,200. “Yes, get the government out of our Church,” the bishop said to loud cheers. “How dare the government tell us our religion requires we only serve people of our faith.” “This time it’s Catholics, but it won’t stop there,” he added. Two Catholic obstetricians/ gynecologists from Omaha, Neb., who were visiting San Francisco to learn techniques of microsurgery to repair fallopian tubes to restore fertility, attended the rally. “We know there is better health care available that doesn’t involve abortion and contraception because we practice it daily,” Dr. Christine Cimo-Hemphill told Catholic San Francisco, the archdiocesan newspaper. “The fact that we have to be here today — in this day and age — fighting for our rights is unbelievable,” said George Wesolek, director of the San Francisco archdiocesan Office of Public Policy and Social Concerns and a rally speaker. “We are not going to be confined to the walls of our Church. Our faith tells us to go out and serve others, no matter what.” In Portland, Ore., Jim Stair, 68, a member of Clackamas Bible Church, was among 300 people who rallied in front of the federal courthouse. “The president needs to reread the Constitution,” he told the Catholic Sentinel, Portland’s archdiocesan newspaper. “The First Amendment provides freedom of religion. Anything the government does to violate that is unconstitutional.” “We do not want the hands of the government on our bodies, our consciences or our souls,” retired Auxiliary Bishop Kenneth D. Steiner told the gathering.
“Our religious liberty is about being able to practice our beliefs in daily life,” the bishop told cheering protesters. “We are love-based organizations.” Women demonstrators in unison read an open letter to President Barack Obama, saying he should not presume to speak for all women. Some wept as they read, saying they are proud to stand up for “the most vulnerable.” More than 300 hundred people crowded the plaza near the Sandra Day O’Connor federal court building in downtown Phoenix. the HHS mandate was an assault on religious freedom and a violation of both the U.S. Constitution and international law. “Religious freedom is not just a Catholic value or a Muslim, Jewish or evangelical value, it’s a deeply American value,” Phoenix Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted told the crowd. He lauded a bill recently introduced in the Arizona Legislature by Republican Rep. Debbie Lesko that would expand the exemption under Arizona law so that any employer or insurer with religious objections is not forced by the government to provide abortifacients or contraceptives in their health plans. Hundreds of people gathered outside federal courthouses in Charlotte, Marion and WinstonSalem, N.C. In Charlotte, Bishop Peter J. Jugis gave the opening prayer. William Thierfelder, president of Belmont Abbey College, spoke about the lawsuit filed by his school against the federal government, one of several filed in an effort to block the HHS mandate before it takes effect in 2013. He described the battle as one akin to that of Daniel in the lion’s den, and said all people of faith must speak up to defend religious freedom. Jeanne Wray of Rome at the Inn, a ministry that helps all pregnant women in need regardless of their faith, called the mandate “a very dangerous precedent.”
“This is about religious intolerance,” she said. “And make no mistake, if we don’t stand up now, Catholic hospitals, schools and colleges could become a thing of the past, and we will be fighting religious persecution.” “I love my country and I am proud to be an American,” she said tearfully, “but I am being forced to choose between my faith and my country.” Tina Pallini, one of the organizers of the rally in the rotunda of the Brown County Courthouse in Green Bay, told The Compass, Green Bay’s diocesan newspaper: “Citizens are standing in prayer and public witness to affirm our religious freedom and to oppose the governmental mandate, an unprecedented and direct attack on our constitutional rights and our religious freedom.” The former diocesan Respect Life coordinator added: “We are here to stand up, to speak out, to pray and to say ‘no thank you’ to the mandate that infringes on our constitutional rights which our country was founded on.” Lynn Watts, 48, was one of about 200 people gathered in Baltimore’s in front of the George H.
Fallon Federal Building. “The mandate that Obama put out overstepped his boundaries and infringed on our religious freedoms,” said Watts, a parishioner of Our Lady of the Fields in Millersville. “We need to stand up and let him know that we don’t all agree with it.” Rally speakers included representatives from different Christian denominations and organizations, Pro-Life organizations, the Jewish community, and lawmakers. Jesuit Father Edward Ifkovits, associate pastor of St. Ignatius in Baltimore, gave the closing prayer. In the Archdiocese of Baltimore, rallies were also organized in Bel Air and Ellicott City. Auxiliary Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski attended the Ellicott City rally, and Auxiliary Bishop Denis J. Madden gave the invocation at the Baltimore rally. U.S. Rep. Andy Harris, a Maryland Republican who is Catholic, told The Catholic Review, Baltimore’s archdiocesan newspaper, that holding rallies in 143 locations sends “a clear message to Washington that you can’t trample on religious freedom.”
The Anchor Exit interviews and welcome mats
As we prepare for Palm Sunday and, in just over a week, Easter, it’s a time when many of the three-quarters of American Catholics who do not attend Mass weekly return to worship. These “Cape”— Christmas, Ashes, Palms and Easter — Catholics still have, thanks be to God, some connection to Christ and His Church that draws them on these occasions and gives the Church community an opportunity to welcome, embrace and hopefully inspire them to come regularly. Many baptized Catholics have unfortunately given up attending even on Christmas and Easter. A 2008 Pew Forum Study showed that 30 million Americans now describe themselves as ex-Catholics. Why have so many given up the regular practice of the faith or stopped coming altogether? This question weighs on the hearts of pastors and faithful alike. We may know the circumstances of why particular family members, friends or fellow parishioners have said they have ceased to practice the faith, but there have been few systematic studies as to why one out of 10 Americans baptized in the Catholic Church now describe themselves as ex-Catholics and why three out of four who still list themselves as Catholics do not practice each week. Some light was shed on these issues last week. A year ago Bishop David O’Connell read an article by Jesuit Father William Byron of St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia suggesting that the Church conduct “exit interviews” of former Catholics to help the Church grasp better why Catholics are leaving, so as to prevent some from doing so and perhaps learn how to draw some of them back. Bishop O’Connell called Father Byron and asked him to put this idea into practice in Bishop O’Connell’s diocese of Trenton, N.J. Together with Charles Zech, the director of the Center for the Study of Church Management at Villanova’s Business School, Father Byron began advertising in secular and diocesan newspapers, parish bulletins and other outlets soliciting non Church-going Catholics to participate in a survey; 298 responded. Byron and Zech released the results in a speech at the Catholic University of America last week. Even though they noted that the survey was one of “convenience” rather than a sociologically-random one, it still illuminated issues that the Church needs to ponder and confront. The vast majority of those who responded said that they have left not only their parish but the Church altogether, with only 25 percent saying they still considered themselves Catholic. They gave many reasons for why they had left, which the authors categorized in terms of “non-negotiable” and “negotiable” issues. Among the non-negotiable or irreformable issues, some cited the hierarchical nature of the Church, the Sacrament of Confession, the all-male priesthood, the Church’s condemnation on same-sex sexual activity, the inability of the divorced-and-remarried to receive Holy Communion, the refusal to grant sponsor certificates to those whom the Church considers canonically unqualified, and the Church’s teaching on the immorality of abortion and contraception. Among the negotiable issues were cited too short, banal and “empty” homilies detached from daily life, uninspiring music, an insatiable focus on raising money, an inadequate response to the sexual abuse of minors, the sense that Church was simply a place to attend Mass lacking a true community spirit, an absence of consultation and transparency in Church administration, “arrogant” and “aloof” priests, unwelcoming or bad experiences in interactions with parish staff or fellow parishioners, the failure of anyone to call or to show concern when they stopped attending each week, too much emphasis on politics, local rules against eulogies at family funerals, a presentation of God as harsh, judgmental and unforgiving, and a sense that women are not equal in the Church and that certain groups of people — those who have same-sex attractions or who are divorced-andremarried — are unwelcome. “There is much to be learned from all of this,” Byron and Zech stated in an accompanying article in America magazine. Even with regard to the “non-negotiable issues,” they pointed to the need for more compelling catechesis and pastoral accompaniment of those with questions and difficulties. They mentioned a paradigmatic reply from a 78-year-old man who, in responding to a question soliciting any bad experiences he may have had, wrote, “Ask a question of any priest and you get a rule; you don’t get a ‘let’s sit down and talk about it’ response.” Certain Church teachings on faith and morals, in other words, rather than being discussed as calls to conversion and to a deeper understanding and living of the faith, were presented as walls, with the clergy sometimes behaving as bricklayers. It doesn’t have to be this way. While the truths of these teachings cannot change, the presentation of them can, so that those who need help to grasp and live teachings that are difficult in our cultural context can come to see the truth and how it will set them free. Moreover, it’s clear from the survey that many have misunderstood what the Church believes and practices — for example in the claims that the Church does not welcome women, those with same-sex attractions, and those who have been divorced-and-remarried. With those who are still open to the truth — who believe that God can teach us contrary to the rigid orthodoxy of contemporary secularist elites — these misconceptions can be clarified through patient conversation and apologetics to prevent some from leaving over misunderstandings. On the negotiable issues, there is even more to learn, for clergy and faithful. The clergy can and must preach better, relating the Gospel to human life in a way in which people genuinely feel fed and develop a hunger for more. For this to occur, however, not only is there a need for much more effective training in seminaries and in continuing formation programs for clergy, but there is a need for a revolution in the expectations that many clergy and faithful have for homilies. Christians hankering for engaging, relevant, biblically-based, inspiring homilies should never have to leave the Catholic Church; for that to occur, however, Catholic preachers and regular Mass-going Catholics need to prioritize those same elements over cultural conventions that equate, for example, the “best” homilies with the “shortest.” The survey likewise shows that there can be disastrous consequences when clergy fail to be humble, approachable and understanding, or when they do not do all it takes to make sure that the children entrusted to them are protected from predators. The calls for more welcoming, warm and familial parishes, inspiring music, greater co-responsibility for the laity, and a more effective apologetics on controversial issues, all depend on the lay faithful to remedy as much as they do the clergy. Byron and Zech say that perhaps the largest take-away from the survey is that the Church — not just the clergy but every Catholic who comes into contact with those who have given up the regular practice of the faith — has to provide a much more effective explanation of the Holy Eucharist and Mass. “Underlying all the opinions expressed by the respondents to this survey,” they wrote, “is the fact that they are, for the most part, willing to separate themselves from the celebration and reception of the Eucharist.” Few, in doing so, regard the dissociation as a separation from Jesus Christ, because, it seems, at a practical (rather than notional) level, they never really regarded the Eucharist as God-incarnate. If those who believe in and love Jesus Christ recognize that He is truly present in the Eucharist, they can never regard Mass and the ability to be with and receive God within as an optional part of a Christian life or something superfluous to the good life. The fact that many fail to grasp this, and have at least partially for this reason wandered away from what the Second Vatican Council called the source and summit of Christian life calls, the authors stated, “for a creative liturgical, pastoral, doctrinal and practical response.” The Good Shepherd declared that he would leave the 99 and go after the one sheep who was lost. The disciples of that Shepherd should always show the same concern. That begins with addressing the issues that can sometimes cause those sheep to separate themselves from the flock, and then with committing ourselves to working with the Good Shepherd to try to bring each sheep for whom He gave His life back to the fold.
March 30, 2012
Vocations: Called by God
n this week’s edition of “Putting thing — to become saints. The Second Into the Deep” I begin a new series Vatican Council, in Chapter 5 of Lumen on vocations. I have chosen this topic Gentium (Dogmatic Constitution on for the same reasons that I have chosen the Church) clearly teaches that each different topics in the past, because, of the baptized share this same Divine generally speaking, it has become one call to the “perfection of charity.” This of those things that we vaguely know is called the “universal call to holiness.” about, but for the most part could profit This universal call means that from a deeper reflection. everyone is called to it, no exceptions! I am also motivated for another Everyone from the pope himself down reason. Last September, Bishop George to the youngest child, from the bishops W. Coleman asked me to assume the and cardinals to the elderly and handiresponsibilities of assistant vocation capped, whether married or single, director for the diocese with a particuyoung or old, priest or lay person, each lar focus on recruitment. What I have and every member of the Church shares found in just these past few months as I this same Divine calling. have visited different schools, parishes It comes from the lips of our Lord and Confirmation programs is that Himself who told His Apostles, and us many don’t see the difference between a still today, “Be perfect as your Heavcareer and a vocation. enly Father is perfect,” or better transAnother major issue is that many see lated, “Be holy as your Heavenly Father a vocation as something that primaris holy.” St. Paul tells the Thessalonians ily pertains to those whom God has in his letter to them, “This is the will of chosen and called to serve as priests God for you, your sanctification.” and religious I think Sisters, as if this is really lay people where our Putting Into do not have “vocation a vocation in crisis” comes the Deep the Church. from. As In the next members of By Father few weeks, I the Church Jay Mello will address we have lost some of the sight of this issues surprimary vocarounding the whole concept of vocation to be holy saints of God. If we lose tions and hopefully shed some light sight of our primary calling, how will upon the questions or misconceptions we ever figure out our own particular that people might have. I will also do vocation? it to make my job as assistant vocation We must recover, above all, this director a bit easier, because while it is sense that this is truly what our Lord my job to find those young men with a is asking of us, to enter into a friendparticular calling to the priesthood, it ship with Him and allow ourselves to is the job of everyone in our diocese to be transformed by His Holy Spirit, by build a culture of vocations in which all His Gospel, by His Grace, and by His our young people are asking the quesSacraments. It is in this transformation tion, “What does God want me to do that we enter into the process of our with my life?” sanctification and in which we are able And this is where we begin. As to hear the gentle whisper of our Lord. children grow up, they are asked over It is only in knowing about and acand over again by parents, grandpartively striving for this primary vocation ents, teachers and friends, “What do of holiness that we will be able to hear you want to be when you grow up?” how God has chosen for us to live that And it is certainly uplifting to hear the out as individuals. The general calling aspirations of our young people speak we all share is holiness, but we also of wanting to be professional athletes each have a particular calling or vocaor teachers, enter the medical or legal tion by which we live out that primary profession, serve in our military, police vocation to holiness. The three vocaforce or become a firefighter. tions in the Church are married life, reFor a Christian, however, one who ligious life and priesthood. I will speak believes that we were made in the immore about these different particular age and likeness of God and that He vocations in the Church in the future. created each of us for a particular purBut it is important here to address pose and that we are each special in His one of the common misconceptions eyes, that question isn’t asked correctly. about a vocation: that it is a job or a For the Christian, the question must career. That couldn’t be more false. not be, “What do you want to be?” but, Taking the vocation to marriage for “What does God want you to be?’ example, it isn’t a 9-5 sort of deal. You Why did God create me? What does don’t get weekends off or vacation from God want me to be or do with myself? your vocation. Those are things that What is my “vocation?” These are the pertain to your career. Parents don’t tell questions that we need to be asking our their sick children, “I’m sorry I can’t children and young people, because im- take care of you today. It’s my day off.” plicit in the question itself is our belief A vocation is a way of life; it is that God has a plan for each and every something that we become, not just one of us. It is what we refer to as our something we do. And this is another “calling.” reason that it is important that we bring The word “vocation” comes from God into the discussion when talking the Latin word “vocare,” which means, about our future, because we aren’t “to call.” In the Catholic sense of the choosing a summer job or deciding word, the term signifies that each of us where we want to go on vacation, we is “called” by God to something. Well, are choosing to fulfill the plan that God what is it that we are called to? has for us. Each of us shares the same vocaFather Mello is a parochial vicar at tion; we are each called to the same St. Patrick’s Parish in Falmouth. ,
March 30, 2012
Old wine, new wineskins: The Constitution on the Liturgy
he council’s first achievement was the Constitution on the Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium, formally approved by Pope Paul VI on Dec. 4, 1963. Let’s note some of the significant ways in which this 130-article document set in motion the reform of Roman Catholic Liturgy; numbers in parentheses refer to articles in the Constitution. In its most famous affirmation, the Constitution says: “The Liturgy is the summit toward which the activity of the Church is directed; at the same time it is the fount from which all her power flows” (10). By “Church” is meant the whole body of the faithful, clergy and laity alike, united to Christ their Head and Priest (7); therefore the “full and active participation by all the people is the aim to be considered before all else” (14). A great boon to active participation was the permission to use languages other than Latin for parts of the Liturgy, especially those more closely involving the people. While preserving Latin as the language of “the Latin rites” (meaning all the liturgical services of the Latin or Roman Church), the Constitution opened up the possibility of translating parts of the Liturgy into the vernacular languages (36). By 1967, just two years after the end of Vatican II, petitions from the various
bishops’ conferences throughelderly has been enriched by out the world had obtained sacramental rites. Viaticum, permission to celebrate the or Holy Communion for the entire Mass in the vernacular. dying, is now appropriately the The Constitution called “last Sacrament” given as food for a renewed appreciation of for the journey. Scripture in liturgical celebraClosely associated with the tions (24). It directed: “The treasures of the Bible are to be opened Vatican II at 50: up more lavishly, so that a richer share Fulfilling the in God’s Word may Promise be provided for the faithful” (51). The By Father tangible result was the Thomas M. Kocik Lectionary introduced in 1969, which gives us a three-year cycle of three readings for Sundays Liturgy is the Church’s calenand a two-year cycle of two dar, which over the centuries readings for weekdays. Previhad become overgrown with ously, each Sunday offered saints’ days to the detriment of two readings: one generally the seasons. The Roman Caltermed “Epistle” (though it endar was to be revised espeoccasionally came from a text cially in order to let Sunday, the other than one of the apostolic Lord’s day, stand out as “the epistles) plus a Gospel readfoundation and kernel of the ing; on weekdays when no whole liturgical year” (106), to saint or feast was celebrated, restore the baptismal features the Sunday readings were proper to Lent (109), and to repeated. With the greater include a more geographically emphasis on Scripture came a diverse selection of saints while new approach to preaching, by removing those of more local which priests were expected significance (111). The Rite of to make the homily an integral Christian Initiation of Adults, part of the Liturgy itself, not a introduced in 1972, recovers seeming interruption (52). the baptismal orientation of The council reverted to Lent by celebrating the “scrutithe more ancient practice of nies” on three Lenten Sundays. anointing those who are seriThese are but a few of the ously ill, not just the dying mandated reforms directed (73-75). Consequently, the toward liturgical renewal. The pastoral care of the sick and fact that many of the changes
Movie on Mexico’s war against Catholics offers timely lessons
Rome, Italy (CNA/EWTN News) — The producer of a new film that brings to life the fight against the Mexican government’s persecution of Catholics in the 1920s says there are clear parallels to today’s situation in the United States and elsewhere. “I think what we are living now is the same things that happened at that time, and after you watch the movie you will see there are a lot of topics that are very alive right now,” Pablo José Barroso, producer of “For Greater Glory,” told CNA on March 21. “For Greater Glory” — formerly called “Cristiada” — charts the history of Mexico’s Cristero War that was sparked by anti-clerical legislation being passed by the Mexican President Elías Calles in 1926. Those laws banned religious orders, deprived the Church of property rights and denied priests civil liberties, including the right to trial by jury and the right to vote. The persecution became so
fierce that some Catholics began to forcibly resist, fighting under the slogan and banner of “Cristo Rey” (Christ the King). “This story broke our hearts, but it’s a story that has to be told,” said Barroso. “It is a real story about people who stood up for their beliefs, and as a Mexican, I am very proud to share with the world this Mexican story which even many Mexicans don’t know about.” The film is directed by Dean Wright and stars award-winning actors Andy Garcia, Eva Longoria and Peter O’Toole among others. “We’re trying to do values movies” with high production quality, explained Barroso, who was present at a premier of the film in Rome on March 20. On March 25, Pope Benedict XVI celebrated Mass with over 400,000 pilgrims in the central Mexican city of Silao. He did so in the shadow of the 65-foot statue of Christ the King which was constructed in the 1940s as a memorial for those who died in
the Cristero War. Dozens of martyrs from the war have since been canonized and beatified by the Church, including 14-year-old Jose Sanchez del Rio who was declared blessed by Pope Benedict XVI in 2005. His story is particularly highlighted in the new film. “I hope that after seeing this movie that people start to stand up and really live by their religion,” said Barroso, who sees the threat to religious liberty emerging around the globe. “As a Catholic, I think now is the time for laymen to stand up and do something.” “For Greater Glory” will arrive in theaters in the United States on June 1.
in the Liturgy since Vatican II were not foreseen, never mind imposed, by the council Fathers must be acknowledged but cannot be examined here; instead, the reader is referred to my history of the Liturgical Movement, published in 2011 and available on The Anchor website. If we want to get a sense of how the reforms outlined by the Liturgy Constitution reflect a deeper and wider understanding of the Church’s faith, some historical perspective is necessary. What led to the loss of a communal sense of worship in the first place? Various factors can be identified. One of these was the evolution and spread of the “Missa privata” or Low Mass in the early Middle Ages, when more monks were becoming priests and needed to say daily Mass. Concelebration was not an option then, and obviously a deacon, subdeacon, assistants and choir could not be provided for each celebration. So the celebrant himself supplied the parts of the absent ministers, while the people’s part was divided between the celebrant and server. The ceremonies were simplified and everything was said in a speaking voice. In time, this became the most common form of celebration in the Latin Church, even when
congregations were present. From the earliest sources, however, we always hear of the Eucharist celebrated with deacons, assistants, and in the presence of the faithful who say and later sing the responses, acclamations and prayers that pertain to them. Another factor can be traced to the 16th century, when the Protestant Reformers denied any real difference between the ordained priesthood and the common priesthood of all the baptized. Because the Church was necessarily preoccupied with defending the sacramental nature of the ordained priesthood, much time would have to pass before the laity’s participation in the one priesthood of Christ could receive overdue attention. When theologians in the mid-20th century brought into fresh perspective the biblical and patristic vision of the Church as the mystical body of Christ, it was only natural that the corporate nature of the Liturgy became a central concern. What the Church is ought to govern how the Church prays. Father Kocik is a parochial vicar at Santo Christo Parish in Fall River, is editor of “Antiphon: A Journal for Liturgical Renewal,” author of two liturgy-related books, and contributor to “T&T Clark Companion to Liturgical Studies.”
Be sure to visit the Diocese of Fall River website at fallriverdiocese.org The site includes links to parishes, diocese offices and national sites.
oday we commemorate Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem signaling the beginning of Holy Week. Mark’s rendition of the Passion is the oldest in the Gospels and vividly relates the story of Jesus’ suffering and death. In the first reading Isaiah describes a good man who, in spite of his goodness, suffers intensely. Compare this to Jesus; the Son of God made flesh … the holiest man imaginable … suffering a horrible death. And the just man in Isaiah complains of being mistreated. Jesus, on the other hand, accepts His horrible fate with humility and dignity. What can we take away from this? We have to face the fact that suffering is a mystery. Many spiritual writers, many theologians, many classical writers, have addressed the question of suffering throughout the ages and all have come up short. Suffering is a mystery of life
March 30, 2012
The mystery of suffering
that we will never fully underfaces his suffering. But he is not stand. discouraged. He trusts that God Does this mean we should will assist him in every way. In just give up and resign ourhis words, he has set his face selves to suffering? Our faith “like flint” against his detractors. and today’s readings would tell us no. There are a lot of things in life Homily of the Week that we do not and cannot fully understand. Palm Some things we just Sunday accept and move on. By Deacon But suffering is not one Frank Fantasia of those things. When we suffer, we want an answer. And so did Jesus. Jesus prayed from In order to discern the the depths of His being to be lessons of these readings we spared from the agony He knew need to determine where these He had to face. He begged God men get the strength to fight. the Father to spare Him from Where did they get the courage the cup He was about drink … to endure what was in front of the cup of suffering and death them even though they knew on the cross. there was no escaping … no And so did the suffering serway out? vant in Isaiah. Isaiah’s suffering First, we know that there are servant proclaims his innocence thousands of men, women and and is almost defiant as he children who face suffering on
a daily basis. And like Isaiah’s servant and Jesus Himself, they are sustained and motivated by faith in God’s goodness and love. Even when things seem dark and dismal. Second, they recognize that their suffering, for some unknown reason, is an integral part of their mission in life and not a punishment caused by a fault of their own. To put this into perspective think of how Jesus lived a perfect life but knew He had a mission to show God’s love to the world. Yes, He struggles with it in His humanity but He finally accepts His situation and realizes His suffering as an integral part of His mission. The just man in Isaiah also accepts his destiny as an integral component of his role as a prophet. What do we learn from all of
this and how do we apply the lessons to our own lives? First and foremost, suffering is a mystery of our human condition. All of us have been called by God for a specific mission in this life and suffering is part and parcel to our purpose. Sometimes it may be hard for us to understand our purpose when suffering is involved. This is where our faith in God comes to the forefront. We don’t have to like what has been placed in our path; we can even rail against it. But the fact of the matter is we cannot avoid it. We need to be comfortable with God’s love and mercy no matter what. During Holy Week may we pick up our crosses and unite our own suffering to Jesus’ passion; all for the greater honor and glory to God. Deacon Fantasia serves at Christ the King Parish in Mashpee.
Upcoming Daily Readings: Sat. Mar. 31, Ez 37:21-28; (Ps) Jer 31:10-13; Jn 11:45-56. Sun. Apr. 1, Palm Sunday, Mk 11:1-10 or Jn 12:12-16 (procession); Is 50:4-7; Ps 22:8-9,17-18a,19-20,23-24; Phil 2:6-11; Mk 14:1—15:47 or 15:1-39. Mon. Apr. 2, Is 42:1-7; Ps 27:1-3,13-14; Jn 12:1-11. Tues. Apr. 3, Is 49:1-6; Ps 71:1-4a,5-6ab,15,17; Jn 13:21-33, 36-38. Wed. Apr. 4, Is 50:4-9a; Ps 69:8-10,21bcd-22,31,33-34; Mt 26:14-25. Thurs. Apr. 5, Holy Thursday, Mass of Chrism, Is 61:1-3a,6a,8b-9; Ps 89:21-22,25,27; Rv 1:5-8; Lk 4:16-21, Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper, Ex 12:1-8,11-14; Ps 116:12-13,15-16bc,17-18; 1 Cor 11:23-26; Jn 13:115. Fri. Apr. 6, Good Friday, Celebration of the Lord’s Passion, Is 52:13—53:12; Ps 31:2,6,12-13,15-17,25; Heb 4:14-16;5:7-9; Jn 18:1—19:42.
ary Eberstadt is my friend, but I’ll risk charges of special pleading and self-plagiarism by quoting my endorsement on the dust jacket of her new book, “Adam and Eve after the Pill” (Ignatius Press): “Mary Eberstadt is our premier analyst of American cultural foibles and follies, with a keen eye for oddities that illuminate just how strange the country’s moral culture has become.” That strangeness is on full display in the ongoing controversy over the HHS-“contraceptive
The difference the pill has made
mandate” — an exercise in raw proached, and like virtually every governmental coercion depicted other talking head and scribe in the by much of the mainstream media world, I was asked what I thought (and, alas, by too many Catholics on the port side of the barque of Peter) as a battle between Enlightened Sexual Liberation and The Antediluvian Catholic Church. Anyone By George Weigel who thinks of this battle in those terms should spend a few evenings reading “Adam and Eve after the Pill.” the history-changing scientific As the talismanic year 2000 ap- discoveries of the 20th-century had been. And like the rest of the commentariat, I answered, “splitting the atom (which unleashed atomic energy for good or ill) and unraveling the DNA double-helix (which launched the new genetics and the new biotechnology).” Today, after a decade of pondering why the West is committing slow-motion demographic suicide through selfinduced infertility, I would add a third answer: the invention of the oral contraceptive, “the Pill.” With insight, verve and compassion, “Adam and Eve after the Pill” explores the results of what Mary Eberstadt bluntly describes as the “optional and intentional sterility in women” the Pill has made possible for three generations. A careful analysis of empirical studies, plus a close reading of literary sources, leads Eberstadt to conclude that the “human fallout of our post-Pill world” has been
The Catholic Difference
severe. How? “First, and contrary to conventional depiction, the sexual revolution [which the Pill made possible] has proved a disaster for many men and women; and second, its weight has fallen heaviest on the smallest and weakest shoulders in society — even as it has given extra strength to those already strongest and most predatory.” Elite culture has been in comprehensive denial about this fallout, argues Eberstadt — a claim reinforced in February by the lynch mob that attacked the Susan G. Komen foundation for daring to hold Planned Parenthood to account for monies Komen had donated to PP (chief guardian of the flame of the sexual revolution) and which PP had misused. Such public quarrels, however, touch the surface of the cultural implosion that followed widespread use of the Pill. Weaving her way through the social sciences and literature with equal dexterity, Mary Eberstadt digs deeper and describes the human costs of the sexual revolution: the “pervasive themes of anger and loss that underlie much of today’s writing on romance;” the “new and problematic phase of prolonged adolescence through which many men now go”; the social and personal psychological harm caused by the availability
of pornography on a historically unprecedented scale; the “assault unleashed from the 1960s onward on the taboo against sexual seduction or exploitation of the young”; and the “feral rates of date rapes, hookups and binge drinking now documented on many campuses” (the direct result of a sexual revolution that has “empowered and largely exonerated predatory men as never before”). “Adam and Eve after the Pill” also explores the cultural weirdness that has followed the Pill’s inversion of classic western and Judaeo-Christian values; in a particularly insightful chapter, Eberstadt analyzes the food taboos that have replaced discarded sexual taboos. The book ends with a telling, if ironic, judgment on the long-term impact of the 1968 encyclical Humanae Vitae: “one of the most reviled documents of modern times, the Catholic Church’s reiteration of traditional Christian moral teaching, would also turn out to be the most prophetic in its understanding of the nature of the changes that the sexual revolution would ring in.” Contrary to what you read in the papers, the “birth control debate” isn’t over. It’s just beginning. George Weigel is Distinguished Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C.
Saying ‘Yes’ to the dress
Monday 26 March 2012 — at the church on Three Mile River — Make up Your Own Holiday Day he Learning Channel has a reality show entitled “Say Yes to the Dress.” I came across it while channel surfing the other night. The show didn’t interest me in the least. Click. I am told, though, that “Say Yes to the Dress” is very popular. The program follows all the events leading up to the purchase of a gown at a high-end bridal salon in New York City. Dresses on the show range from $1,300$40,000.
March 30, 2012 Not to be outdone by some fancy-schmancy New York City store, St. Nicholas of Myra Parish hosted a less-costly version called “Project Dress-up.” One
recent Saturday morning and Sunday afternoon, the Pastoral Life Center opened wide its doors to any young woman who needed a fancy dress. In the
parish hall was rack after rack of gowns — 1,461 dresses, to be exact. All were gently-used and had been donated. One was even sent by United Parcel Service from Vermont. The dresses had been drycleaned in advance (for free). A local eatery donated lunch for all the shoppers. Some 20 businesses gave gift certificates for hair-dressing, makeup, and manicures. The evening before, the ROTC from the local public high school had set up the “boutique.” It was a community-wide event and it was held right here. “This is our second year. I wouldn’t think of holding
The mighty roar of a whisper
much effort ... just an awareness. t can get darn right He’s there in the glory of a overwhelming. At least warm sunrise, and He’s there it does for me. I’m a Catholic in the savory aroma of a brewwho is trying to do the right ing pot of coffee on a chilly things to and for myself and morning. everyone else. But we’re He’s there in a Honda Civic constantly bombarded with when the driver flashes her evil sorties hurled our way: The HHS mandate concerning insurance and contraception; marriage issues; abortion; euthanasia; and freedom or lack thereof of religion in By Dave Jolivet the U.S. We are also told what to do and what not to do. We’re told high beams to give you the how bad we are, and how right of way at a busy intersecunworthy we are. Sometimes tion ... when no one else will. I have to ask, “Where is God The next time you go to in all this?” I find trying to do Mass and there’s an infant in everything for everyone can his mother’s arms in the pew break the spirit sometimes. in front of you, watch the little That’s when I tell myself bundle. God is there. to take the time to step back Observe as he gnaws at so I can continue to journey his chubby little fingers like a forward. squirrel with an acorn. Watch In 1 Kings, God appeared as his eyes travel all over the to Elijah. But God was not in church absorbing everything the wind, an earthquake, or and everyone around him. fire. He came as a whisper. Take note when his eyes meet Despite everything comyours and he flashes a great ing at us helter skelter, and big grin that’s all gums. despite, at times, our not See when he cries how his knowing what or how much mom cradles him and feeds him we should do, God is there. and the sobs morph into conIn my own little world I can tented little groans and grunts. find Him, and it doesn’t take
My View From the Stands
God is there talking to you. He’s there in the unconditional joy your dog has when you come home from work and her tail twirls like an outboard motor and her backside dances the cha-cha. He’s there when your teenage daughter tells you everything that happened to her at school that day — because she wants you to be a part of it. Man, there’s nothing better than that. He’s there when your spouse asks how your day went. God is with you when you say grace at supper — whether it’s a gourmet dinner or hot dogs and fries. And remember that inspiring sunrise? Well, that same orb is ready to put on a show just before it hits the sack. Just for you, if you’ll only take notice. And God is there in that moment when you’re lying in bed and you finally release all thoughts of the past day and drift into a well-deserved sleep. As Catholics we must fight the good fight. We must defend the faith. In order to do so we must step back to step forward. God is not only about what He wants from us, but what He does for us. And there’s plenty of that.
it anywhere else but in my own parish,” said the organizer. And her parish was willing and able to support her in the venture. The event was planned and overseen by Danielle Brodeur, a parishioner here at St. Nicholas Church and a high school senior. People of the parish (as well as many others) were pleased to offer Danielle assistance in her imaginative undertaking. Young people, of course, have customary rites of passage. These often include getting all dressed up. In this economy, rites of passage can get prohibitively expensive. The event was much-appreciated by the young people and their families. Promotional materials were sent in advance to some 30 schools in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. The event received major coverage in the local Taunton and Attleboro newspapers. Channel 6, Channel 7, and Channel 10 ran news segments. The word was out. Then the young women arrived at our door. Some had a prom to attend. Some had two proms and wanted a different dress for each. “Sure, take two.” One was going to a sports banquet, and another to a military ball. Some asked if they could pick out a gown for a friend as well as their own. Sure. How about two friends? Sure. “How much does this gown cost?” asked a concerned mother holding the fine dress her daughter had chosen. “There’s no charge. It’s free. All these gowns are free,” she was told. “Would you like it wrapped? Have you had lunch? Does your daughter want a free raffle ticket on these beauty items?” The woman’s jaw dropped. “When do we have to return the gown to you folks?” another mother asked. “Please don’t return it. Just pass it on to someone else who could use it.” From what I would hear and
observe from my folding chair at the front door, every young woman of high school and college age who came here to “just look” found the “perfect” dress. The event ran flawlessly, even with the complicated logistics. This kind of outreach to the younger families of the community is something I like to see happening. It happened without any effort on my part. All I had to do was say “yes” to the dress idea. When Blessed John XXIII announced the Second Vatican Council 50 years ago, he was asked what his intentions were in calling an ecumenical council. He purportedly answered that he wanted to open the windows of the Church and let in some fresh air. Opening a window certainly does let in fresh air, but what good is it to open the windows if the doors are bolted shut? It seems to me that if a parish is to become a welcoming presence in the neighborhood, the first thing you have to do is unlock the doors. Many of our parishes have lovely buildings — churches and centers — but they are more often than not kept locked. The facilities of a parish church should be a community resource available to all. Activities held in a parish center should reflect a wide range of interests. I know of one parish center, for example, that was commonly referred to as simply the “bingo hall.” It’s not good for any one group to monopolize a church facility. It shuts others out. Evangelization begins with hospitality. Hospitality begins by unlocking the door and letting people in. This is the reason I said “yes” to the dress. I wanted to open the doors. People came from miles around. It worked. Father Goldrick is pastor of St. Nicholas of Myra Parish in North Dighton.
The Anchor By Becky Aubut Anchor Staff
NEW BEDFORD — When you walk into St. Francis of Assisi Parish in New Bedford, chances are the first person you’ll meet is James Ventura. If it snowed that morning, then Ventura arrived early to clean off the steps to make sure parishioners made his or her way safely into church. If you’re receiving the Eucharist, you may look up and see Ventura in his role as extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. If you attended Faith Formation classes at the parish, chances are Ventura taught you in fifth grade. If you’re male, then you’ve surely heard about the parish’s Men’s League from Ventura, who has been its president for the past 30 years and always scouting for new members. And if Ventura took a moment to read out-loud the above paragraph, it might be the most he’s said about himself since he took an active role in the parish. “It’s so hard to talk about myself,” he said. “It’s just when I see something needs to be done, I do it.” His wife Edie said about him, “He’s spiritual inside. He’s a good, good person. He’s so humble and doesn’t like to talk about himself. He’s a hard worker and has such a good work ethic. The Church has always been special. Whenever there is slack, he picks it up.” While Church is special, Ventura makes it more special by his dedication to the par-
March 30, 2012
Actions speak louder than words him into joining the Men’s tura. ish. “I stay in it now because “Jim brings a sense of wel- League, Ventura liked the come. When you come to the idea. The league fit his per- I feel the group will dissolve 10 o’clock Mass, he is all sonality — working hard on if they don’t have someone dressed up and as one of the creating fund-raisers for the pushing it all the time,” he first ushers brings that experi- parish but without putting the said. Trying to recruit ence to make people new members is feel comfortable,” difficult; membersaid Father Kevin ship hovers around Harrington, pastor 15 men. The league of the parish. “Peoworks in conjuncple know that he’s tion with the Womfaithful.” en’s League to put He wasn’t always on dinners and other that way, admits events, raising monVentura. The New ey for the parish and Bedford native reCatholic Charities. ceived his SacraNew members bring ments at St. John fresh fund-raising the Baptist Parish ideas, like the recent in New Bedford, idea suggested by a attending Mass evnew member to sell ery Sunday with his a book focused on family because it the life of the patron was part of his famisaint of the parish, ly’s routine. Shortly St. Francis of Assiafter being married, si. That fund-raiser he did a tour in the enabled the league service and then reto buy a Bible for turned home to join every student of the his wife’s parish of parish’s Faith ForSt. Francis of Assisi. mation program. “For a couple of “People are afraid years I didn’t do to join because they much,” said Vendon’t want to get tura, of his early stuck doing someyears attending the thing that they’re parish. Working on an apprentice-type Anchor Person of the week — James not prepared for, but this is simple,” said system at his job, Ventura. (Photo by Bekcy Aubut) Ventura. Ventura didn’t have Meetings don’t last more much time to spare as he spotlight on league members. worked his way up through That behind-the-scenes ap- than an hour and the benethe ranks of printer that proach worked well for Ven- fits of the league go beyond evolved into a pre-press sys- tura until he raised his hand fund-raising; it establishes a tem when computers were in- to volunteer for president. continuing sense of commutroduced, working mainly as a Thirty years later he is still at nity, said Ventura: “It gets the helm because no one else more people involved in the supervisor. When his friends talked wants the position, said Ven- Church through the Men’s
League.” “A Men’s League is something that few parishes have,” said Father Harrington, adding that Ventura has a natural attrition to adapt and bring new people in the Men’s League. Having been president for so long, said Father Harrington, has enabled Ventura to be “instrumental in implementing the new ideas and carrying on the ideas that have been going on for years. He’s able to empower newer members and is a resource for them.” While the Men’s League has been his most constant focus at the parish, Ventura was also part of the Scout program when his two boys became members in their youth. Ventura has also run the parish’s Faith Formation program, teaching fifth grade and helped coordinate the program with the pastor at that time. Ventura makes an impact on those around him simply by the way he lives, said his wife, adding that he picked up that work ethic from his family. Ventura said he hopes that his leading by example will inspire his parish community to continue to strive and sustain the parish. “You have to have somebody there who wants to take charge. Even though I don’t really want to take charge, I feel if I don’t then everything will fall by the wayside,” said Ventura, acknowledging he won’t be around forever when he added, “Hopefully somebody will pick it up for me who will have that same push.” To submit a Person of the Week nominee, send an email with information to fatherrogerlandry@anchornews. org.
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March 30, 2012
Restoring St. Patrick’s Cathedral to cost $175 million, take five years
NEW YORK (CNS) — St. Patrick’s Cathedral, “America’s parish church and the soul of the capital of the world,” will undergo a $175 million, five-year restoration project that is necessary for its survival, according to Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York. Cardinal Dolan made the announcement on the steps of the cathedral March 17, hours before reviewing the 251st St. Patrick’s Day Parade up Fifth Avenue. He said the 133-year-old landmark is a “supernatural home” for Catholics, all believers and people with no explicit religion “who come here for a hint of the divine and assurance of help.” The ambitious project is not a cosmetic facelift, Cardinal Dolan said, but a sorely needed response to crumbling bricks, splitting windows, aged heating, a leaky roof and a grit-encrusted facade. Cardinal Dolan said $45 million was raised for the first part of the three-phase project, which will begin before the end of March. The initial work will repair, restore and clean the soot-darkened exterior and clean the stainedglass windows “inside and out,” he said. The cardinal acknowledged the daunting task of raising $175 million in a tight economy. “The dare of the campaign could chill us” if not for the pride and passion evident in the New York community, he said. As he donned a red hard hat after the announcement, Cardinal Dolan quipped, “This hat’s gonna cost me a lot more than the one in Rome did.” At a festive Mass between the announcement and the parade, Cardinal Edwin F. O’Brien encouraged worshippers to support the renovation. Cardinal O’Brien, grand master of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem, is a native New Yorker who served the archdiocese for 30 years. He and Cardinal Dolan were elevated to the College of Cardinals in February. In his homily, Cardinal O’Brien challenged people to make sacrificial offerings in thanksgiving for
the religious freedom they enjoy. To applause, Cardinal O’Brien said religious freedom was imperiled by not-so-subtle government strangulation. He said the history of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, from its inception in 1859 by Archbishop John Hughes, New York’s first archbishop, to its dedication by Cardinal John McCloskey in 1879, was a tribute to Archbishops Hughes’ foresight and the commitment of Irish immigrants both to their faith and to their new country. Cardinal O’Brien said contemporary pundits called the project “Hughes’ Folly” because it was thought to be unrealistic, poorly timed, too expensive and too remote from the heart of New York. “Irish immigrants were openly rejected by the elite of the day.” Cardinal O’Brien said. On St. Patrick’s Day, Irish immigrants and their descendants filled St. Patrick’s Cathedral in the heart of midtown Manhattan and then spilled out onto Fifth Avenue to join two million spectators and more than 200,000 marchers at the oldest, largest annual parade in New York. Cardinals Dolan and O’Brien and New York’s retired archbishop, Cardinal Edward M. Egan, concelebrated the Mass with five bishops and more than 60 priests. At the Mass and the parade, special recognition was given to American military veterans, especially the U.S. Army’s 69th Regiment. The “Fighting 69th” was or-
ganized as an Irish brigade from New York during the Civil War. Cardinal O’Brien said the brigade’s heroism at the battles of Antietam, Md., and Gettysburg, Pa., were principal causes of the Union victory in the Civil War. He said the Irish brigade’s noble tradition has continued during its multiple tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. After Mass, Msgr. Robert T. Ritchie, rector of the cathedral, said the renovation will maintain the building’s innate Gothic beauty and status as a place of honor to God and welcome to all people. He said the cathedral will remain open throughout the project and work will pause during Masses. Popular lore holds that the cathedral was built with the modest contributions of Irish immigrant domestic servants. Msgr. Ritchie said the campaign to fund the restoration would “look to John and Mary Doe” and others who appreciate the religious, architectural and cultural significance of the cathedral. He said donors will be able to contribute funds and follow the progress of the renovation on a dedicated website. Helen Lowe, archdiocesan development director, said the first $45 million came from early donors and grants from the archdiocese and the trustees of the cathedral. The campaign to raise the remaining $130 million will include direct-mail solicitation, national and international outreach and solicitation of the cathedral’s
5.5 million visitors annually, she said. Lowe said potential donors are horrified and intrigued by a box of stones displayed in her office. All fell from various parts of the cathedral. She likened the considerable fund-raising challenge to medieval times when churches were built as a sign of praise for God. Jeffrey Murphy, a partner in Murphy Burnham Buttrick, the architectural firm in charge of the restoration, said hundreds of jobs
will be created by the project. He said acid rain and general pollution had eaten away at the Tuckahoe marble used for part of the cathedral. Although the quarry in neighboring Westchester County where the stone was cut is long closed and inaccessible, marble retained from the quarry was located and purchased for the project. Msgr. Ritchie said the last large-scale renovation was completed in the 1940s.
In need of repair — St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City will undergo a $175 million, five-year restoration project that is necessary for its survival, according to Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York. (CNS photo)
March 30, 2012
Diocese of Fall River TV Mass on WLNE Channel 6 Sunday, April 1, 11:00 a.m.
Celebrant is Msgr. Stephen J. Avila, pastor of St. Mary’s Parish in Mansfield
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sunset service — The sun sets as Pope Benedict XVI celebrates Mass in Antonio Maceo Revolution Square in Santiago de Cuba, Cuba, March 26. Celebrating the outdoor service on his first day in Cuba, the pope acknowledged the struggles of the country’s Catholics after half a century of communism. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)
Diocesan priests prepare to lead faithful into Holy Week, Easter continued from page one
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Attleboro sees Palm Sunday as an opportunity for area parishes to extend their own type of hospitality to parishioners, embracing those who regularly attend and welcoming back those who do not. “Palm Sunday, like Ash Wednesday, Easter and Christmas, affords many people the opportunity to return to Church,” said Father Murray. “I see this as a chance to extend the hospitality of the Church to those who have been away so that they may know they are welcome, not just on these high holy days, but every Sunday throughout the year. It is a great joy to see a full church and to experience the openness to the saving love of God, which is so obvious to us in these sacred celebrations.” Throughout Lent, parishioners have been preparing to celebrate the mysteries of the Catholic faith through prayer, fasting and works of charity, said Father Murray, and Palm Sunday gives parish members the opportunity to meditate and connect with their faith on
a tremendously deep level with the Paschal Mystery. “The Liturgy of the day is elaborate,” said Father Murray. “The Passion narrative offers us a chance to enter with our Lord into the saving events which took place more than 2,000 years ago. However, the Liturgy of Passion Sunday only allows us to touch upon the central themes without going into great depth. It is only entering fully into Holy Week do we have the ability to pray and meditate upon these mysteries in a deeper fashion; in particular, allowing ourselves to take part in the Triduum — Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Vigil.” Palm Sunday lays the foundation for the Holy Week and Father Chmurski said that parishioners should not only try to understand the symbolism within the Mass but also appreciate all that Jesus gave of Himself when He died. “The symbolism is so meaningful. I usually tell my parishioners that everything goes through that narrow passage
of Good Friday, where everything disappears. Jesus Christ died and there is this emptiness and darkness that comes,” said Father Chmurski. “Most people are part of Easter, when everything is already developed and Jesus is resurrected, and everything is wonderful. I think the challenge of today’s Church is we need to encourage people to know the truth, that through sacrifice you gain so much because Jesus went through that sacrifice; He conquered death and the result was the resurrection and the forgiveness of sins.” If people understand the message in the right context, then they will pray to God on a daily basis, not just lean on Him when things become difficult in life. God is there for the good and the bad, said Father Chmurski, and people need to be reminded of that. “Holy Week reminds us that if God sacrificed His only Son, and Jesus took that challenge and died because He loves us so much, what about us? We should sacrifice for others and going through dark times can lead us to something greater if we take the challenge,” said Father Chmurski. “Palm Sunday is the beginning of Jesus answering the city of Jerusalem and announcing why He came here. We’re reminded that He is called the King of the Jews and we all give Him this praise. We need to always see that Jesus, Who is entering this holy city, that He came to conquer death. I think Palm Sunday should a constant reminder who Jesus is, that He triumphs among us.”
March 30, 2012
Christians have duty to promote health care reform, speakers say By Christine M. Williams Anchor Correspondent
South Hamilton, Mass. — During His ministry, Jesus cared for the whole person — mind, body and soul. He healed those with mental, physical and spiritual afflictions and instructed His disciples to do the same. At a recent event at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Hamilton, Protestants gathered to talk about carrying on Jesus’ healing mission today. They said Christians have a responsibility to respond to the problems of the health care system in the United States and to societal health problems. The event, entitled “Sent Out to Heal: The Church’s Role in the Health Care Crisis,” was held March 17. Much of the advice expressed reflected the decades-long call for health care reform by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. According to a pastoral letter on health care in 1981, the Catholic Church considers such care to be “a basic human right which flows from the sanctity of human life.” In a pitch for comprehensive health care reform, the bishops released a resolution in 1993 that noted that the bishops have called for national action on health care since the 1920s. They urged “fundamental reform” to address the high cost of care and the substantial inequity that negatively affects the poor.
“Our nation’s health care system serves too few and costs too much,” they wrote. “In our view, the best measure of any proposed health care initiative is the extent to which it combines universal access to comprehensive quality health care with cost control, while ensuring quality care for the poor and preserving human life and dignity.” They warned that the government should avoid divisive disputes over issues like abortion and physicianassisted suicide, writing, “We strongly believe it would be morally wrong and counterproductive to compel individuals, institutions, or states to pay for or participate in procedures that fundamentally violate basic moral principles and the consciences of millions of Americans.” In 2010, the bishops opposed the health care reform legislation, signed into law by President Barack Obama, because of evidence that it would expand federal funding of abortion and because it failed to include conscience protections. This year, Health and Human Services (HHS) has used the law to require employers to cover contraceptives at no cost to the insured. The U.S. bishops have maintained that there can be no compromise on forcing employers to violate their consciences by providing services like hor-
Washington D.C. — At the March 24 “Reason Rally” in Washington, D.C., an estimated 20,000 atheists and agnostics heard author and activist Richard Dawkins encourage mockery of Catholic beliefs and those of other religions. “Don’t fall for the convention that we’re all ‘too polite’ to talk about religion,” Dawkins said, before urging rally attendees to ridicule Catholics’ faith in the Eucharist. “Religion makes specific claims about the universe which need to be substantiated, and need to be challenged — and if necessary, need to be ridiculed with contempt,” he told the cheering crowd on the National Mall. “For example, if they say they’re Catholic: Do you really believe, that when a priest blesses a wafer, it turns into the body of Christ? Are you seriously telling me you believe that? Are you seriously saying that wine turns into blood?” If the answer is yes, Dawkins suggested atheists should show contempt for believers instead of ignoring the issue or feigning respect. “Mock them,” he told the crowd. “Ridicule them! In public!” The former Oxford professor and author of “The God Delusion” was among the headliners of Saturday’s rally, which also featured comedian Eddie Izzard, punk rock group Bad Religion, and magician James Randi. Dawkins called for atheists to iden-
tify themselves in public, for the sake of a more openly secular society. He also claimed that many self-identified Christians are only nominal adherents of their religion, and should be given a chance to disavow beliefs that they may not hold. “When you meet somebody who claims to be religious, ask them what they really believe,” Dawkins suggested. “If you meet somebody who says he’s Catholic, for example, say: ‘What do you mean? Do you just mean you were baptized Catholic, because I’m not impressed by that.’” But those who hold to the doctrines of their faith should be openly ridiculed, Dawkins said. “I don’t despise religious people; I despise what they stand for,” he explained. Elsewhere in his remarks, the former professor praised the “truth” and “beauty” of Darwinian evolution, and the ability of the “incredible process” to produce life with the “illusion of design.” “How is it conceivable,” he wondered, “that the laws of physics should conspire together — without guidance, without direction, without any intelligence — to bring us into the world?” It was “almost too good to be true,” he rhapsodized, that this “mechanical, automatic, unplanned, unconscious process” should produce human intelligence.
Dawkins calls for mockery of Catholics at ‘Reason Rally’
“That’s not just true, it’s beautiful,” he declared to cheers from the crowd of agnostics and atheists.
monal birth control, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs. Many of the bishops’ criticisms of the national health care system were outlined by Dr. Timothy Johnson, chief medical editor for ABC News, during his keynote talk. He agreed that costs are too high. Doctors have no real incentives to consider cost control. Complicated insurance coverage requires a staff dedicated to filing paperwork with various companies. Hospitals are expensive and become a last resort for the uninsured, who often do not receive primary care and wait to seek medical assistance. New, sometimes very expensive treatments, are widely used before their efficacy is determined, Johnson added. He recommended comparative outcomes data for procedures, better electronic data to reduce duplication of services and family doctors who intimately know their patients. Johnson said that the health care system in this country is itself broken. The U.S. spends more than twice as much per capita on health care as other industrialized countries even though it does not provide insurance for all and clinical outcomes are similar across the board. “When you hear a politician say we have the best health care system in the world, they’re wrong,” he said. “We
have our work cut out for us.” Other speakers at the seminary gave advice on the Church community level. They said that because churches are tasked with the responsibility to heal parishioners’ souls, they also have a duty to help heal those people as whole individuals. Caring for the body is part of good stewardship and that churches should encourage healthy habits. Dr. Ray Hammond, a doctor and pastor at Bethel AME Church in Boston, said churches should serve fresh fruits and veggies at events rather than sugary, fatty fare. Christian ministers need to lead their flocks by example. “It is very hard for me to ask people to do what I don’t model very well myself,” he said, adding that in promoting healthy habits, he has had to rethink his own diet and exercise. Hammond’s church also promotes annual health conferences, disease awareness events, and physical fitness thorough activities like their 10-week walking program. Dr. Stephen Ko, a pediatrician and leader at the Chinese Bible Church of Greater Boston in Lexington, said his church links spirituality with giving to an important health cause through an annual Good Friday blood drive. “Jesus gave of His own blood to save us so we can give of our own blood,” he said.
Revised Roman Missal enhances Easter Triduum prayers continued from page one
changes Holy Week more than anything else,” Msgr. Moroney said. “If you were to look at the 1975 Roman Missal, you would see this kind of disjointed rendering of the rubrics for Holy Week. There are very few changes in what you actually do; it’s just a little bit clearer on what you’re supposed to do, with a lot more theology behind it. “We now have a new translation of the Roman Missal that hopefully explains those rubrics in a much clearer way.” Noting that the contemporary rites for Holy Week can be traced back to the fourth century and were pretty much solidified by the 12th century, Msgr. Moroney explained how the earliest Christians based many of the rituals on specific sites associated with Christ’s passion, death and resurrection. “The early practice in the fourth century of venerating the cross was initiated in places that had a major relic of the Holy Cross,” Msgr. Moroney said. “But by the 12th century everyone was doing it.” Msgr. Moroney noted that the earliest Good Friday services would be three-hour sessions during which the faithful would meditate and mourn over Christ’s agony and death between the hours of noon and 3 p.m. They would also read Scriptures from the Old and New Testaments. “In every instance of Holy Week and especially during the Easter Triduum, the Old Testament is more important to read than any day during the rest of the year,” Msgr. Moroney said. “Because as St. Matthew says to us frequently: ‘These Scriptures are fulfilled’ and as Jesus said in the Synagogue in Capernaum:
‘Today in your hearing these Scriptures are fulfilled.’” Joking that parishioners will often complain today that the reading of the Passion narrative takes too long, Msgr. Moroney said it only takes an average of seven to 13 minutes. “These people were there for three hours, praying and meditating on the Passion,” he said. Beginning with Holy Thursday, Msgr. Moroney talked about the rite of the washing of the feet. He said that the occasional controversy over whether only men can have their feet washed depends theologically on whether the stress is place on reenacting what Jesus did to the male Apostles during the Last Supper or what He commissioned them to do to others, men and women both. The rite uses the word vir, meaning male, but one U.S. bishop wrote to the Vatican asking whether it would be possible that year, because of a controversy, to wash women’s feet, and the Vatican gave that bishop permission. Msgr. Moroney added that in the new Roman Missal, the number of people selected for the foot-washing — traditionally 12 — and even the location of where this rite is performed are not set in stone. “There is no prescription in the rubrics as to how many people can have their feet washed,” he said. “In the reforms of Pius XII in 1951, he prescribed 12 men, because it was seen as being associated with the priesthood and these were the 12 Apostles. But there is no indication of that in the present rubrics. “There’s nothing that says people have to even leave their pews. If you had 12 people scattered throughout the church seated on the aisle, and you walked
Our Lady’s Monthly Message From Medjugorje March 25, 2011
“Dear children! Also today, with joy, I desire to give you my motherly blessing and to call you to prayer. May prayer become a need for you to grow more in holiness every day. Work more on your conversion because you are far away, little children “Thank you for having responded to my call.” Spiritual Life Center of Marian Community One Marian Way Medway, MA 02053 • Tel. 508-533-5377 Paid advertisement
through the congregation and knelt down beside the pew and washed the foot of the person as they remained sitting with their family, that’s perfectly within the parameters of the rite.” One of the substantive changes in the Good Friday rite, according to Msgr. Moroney, is the option that the priest may take off his shoes before venerating the cross — a tradition that began in Salisbury in the 12th century. “The priest would always remove his shoes as a sign of humility before venerating the Cross of Christ,” he said. Msgr. Moroney said the new Roman Missal also offers two different options for the unveiling of the cross on Good Friday. “In the first, the deacon brings the cross covered with a violet veil to the priest who uncovers a little of its upper part and raises it three times until it is completely uncovered,” he said. “In the second form, the priest or deacon carries the cross completely uncovered through the church, raising it three times with the acclamation.” Since there is no Mass celebrated on Good Friday, Msgr. Moroney was asked whether a deacon could preside over the service. The answer is no. “At first blush, it appears as if there’s nothing a deacon couldn’t do on Good Friday,” he said. “It’s basically a Communion service preceded by a devotional act — the veneration of the cross — along with an extended form of the general intercessions and the proclamation of the Passion. But the Good Friday service always has had a certain presbyteral association to it. Just as the priest acts in the Person of Christ in the sacred Eucharist, so too he does in the Good Friday service.”
March 30, 2012 Of the many rituals and rubrics involved with the Easter Vigil, Msgr. Moroney said the lighting of the fire and the blessing of the Paschal candle are among the richest and most symbolic. “The fire is an old Celtic tradition when at springtime, just before it starts to get warm, they would go up on the hilltops and have bonfires,” he said. “That’s what the Easter Vigil is supposed to be: standing in the cold darkness waiting for the Lord to come.” Msgr. Moroney said the Easter candle was originally a wax taper on a spear — the latter image recalling both the nails used in Christ’s crucifixion and the lance that pierced His side. While the blessing of the Paschal candle remains essentially the same — with the tracing of the cross with a stylus and the insertion of nails into the five points of the cross — Msgr. Moroney noted there is a new rubric dating back to the fourth century in which grains of incense are inserted into the holes before the nails. “The theological underpinning is an honoring of the wounds of Christ, rather than honoring the nails,” he said. “We honor Christ’s wounds — the sweetness of the blood that has redeemed us — by placing incense into these wounds. It’s a meditation on the wounds of Christ and the wounds we inflict on Him and other people.” Msgr. Moroney added that the great Easter proclamation — the Exultet — has also been restored and is now 20 percent longer than the previous version. “I often use this as an example of a text that changed the most in the Roman Missal, along with the first eucharistic prayer,” he said. “In some respects you can see why: because it’s really ornate and intense poetry.” Although the word exult is not
This week in 50 years ago — Bishop James L. Connolly, with the assistance of Father Philip LeBlanc, MS, provincial of the La Salette order, broke ground for a new $2 million construction project at the National Shrine of Our Lady of La Salette in Attleboro. 25 years ago — A “total stewardship” weekend retreat-workshop was held at St. John Neumann Parish in East Freetown, launching the parish on a two-and-a-half year program of spiritual revitalization. Developed by the National Catholic Conference for Total Stewardship in Washington, D.C., the weekend program was conducted by Father Francis A. Novak, CSSR, its originator.
common in English, it is closest to the Latin term for rejoice which was translated in the new Roman Missal. “It’s like exultation,” he said. “It’s a kind of hysterical joy or joy without limit.” Calling the Easter Triduum three of “the most important days in the liturgical calendar,” Msgr. Moroney said the new prayers and rites reflect that fact. “It’s about standing together in the dark and in the cold, and then feeling the warmth of that fire kindled in us on Easter,” he said. “It’s the same feeling the women at the tomb must have had on Easter morning when they found the tomb empty; and then when they see and recognize the risen Christ.” Msgr. Stephen J. Avila, pastor of St. Mary’s Parish in Mansfield and director of the diocesan Worship Office, expressed his gratitude to Msgr. Moroney for once again presenting a concise and informative workshop on the liturgical changes. “Msgr. Moroney was instrumental in assisting in the implementation of the new English translation here a few years ago through two workshops, which were attended by more than 600 priests, deacons and lay leaders in the diocese,” he said. “Personally, his teaching became the basis of the parishbased workshops I conducted throughout the diocese in the months leading up to the implementation. “Now that we have been using the new translation for a few months, it was a great opportunity to once again be with Msgr. Moroney and ask specific questions about the new translation as well as gain insight into the rich traditions of the liturgical texts, which can only positively impact our celebrations of Holy Week in our parishes.”
10 years ago — More than 175 people attended the first annual RCIA Lenten Retreat Day at Cathedral Camp enjoying a spiritually charged day of prayer and reflection. The day came as prospective Catholics prepared to be baptized and enter into full Communion with the Church on Easter Sunday. One year ago — After more than two years of planning and fund-raising, the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate based at Our Lady’s Chapel in downtown New Bedford launched the first-ever 24-hour Catholic radio station in the Fall River Diocese. WPMW — also known as Radio CorMariae — made its official debut at the 88.5 frequency on the FM dial.
March 30, 2012
Romaria: Not a tradition, but a lifelong pilgrimage continued from page one
“I learned about the Romarias from my grandfather when I was a young boy,” 19-year-old Jeff Clementino of Fall River, told The Anchor. “He would bring me to watch the Good Friday Romarias in Fall River and tell me stories about how they were done in the old country. I fell in love with it as kid, and when I was seven, I asked to go because I really wanted to.” Clementino said that many people take part in the Fall River Good Friday Romaria, “but not everyone is serious about it. It’s something that has to be taken very seriously.” “It’s a profession of our Catholic faith,” he said passionately. “It is not a tradition. It has meaning and it’s a way of maintaining our faith. I take part the way I was taught by my grandparents and parents.” A crucial element of the preparation each year is the need to meet a few times. “About 30 or so people attend both meetings, but nearly 300 people show up on Good Friday,” Clementino said. “The meetings are meant to keep us focused on why we take part. Some people say they don’t have to go to the meetings because they’ve already walked in a Romaria. That’s not they way it’s supposed to be. Some get off track.” While the pilgrims, or brothers and sisters as they call themselves, walk they pray the Ave Maria and sing holy songs. When they arrive at a church they say a special prayer at the door, invoking the intercession of the patron or patroness of that parish. “I have about 20 different prayers for the different saints, each about 15 stanzas long,” explained Clementino. “I make it a point to memorize all of them. It really helps my faith life.” As they enter, they sing or continue the prayer to the saint, and when inside they pray for the many special intentions given to them before the pilgrimage. “We pray for people with cancer, for peace, for the soldiers in harm’s way, for families, and anything people need,” said Clementino. The original Romaria on St. Michael’s was an eight-day event, with the pilgrims walking across the island territories. “A big part of the Romarias is uniting Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross with our own,” he continued. “A good example of that happened when I took part on St. Michael’s. The terrain is very hilly and rugged on the island. There were 55 brothers taking part and we all stopped at the base of a large hill. We tied all the staffs together and one of the brothers carried them on his back up the hill. It was an incredible sacri-
fice to make. I was shocked. And then we all shared in the sacrifice together, climbing the steep hill without a staff, where one would have been a big help. It was a sign of what Jesus did for us.” Daniel Almas of Taunton participated in his first Romaria in St. Michael’s on the Azores in 1965. “It was a full week there, and after the first day I was very tired,” he said. “But on the second day, it settled in. It gets into your blood, and you look forward to walking every year. I need this walk to complete my Lent.” Almas said everything they wear and say has a special meaning. “The Rosary is to pray for Mary to be the liaison between Jesus and us, so our prayers will get to Him,” he explained. “It’s a day of peace, prayer, songs and lots of petitions; for peace, for the sick, the elderly people in nursing homes, hospital patients, for the abandoned children, for parishes, for the unborn, and for our beloved departed.” When Almas came to America he lived in the Boston area for 21 years. “We never had anything like it in Boston,” he said. “Then when I moved to Taunton, I learned about the New Bedford Romaria, and I went every year. Then when it came to Taunton, I took part in both.” Almas told The Anchor that last week’s event in Taunton drew the most participants yet. “When we left last Saturday morning, we had 93 people,” he said. “It was beautiful that we had many families, with fathers, mothers, sons and daughters walking together. We even had some Confirmation students who attended and some brought their parents. We had people from all over eastern Massachusetts come and walk.” Antonio Farias of New Bedford has led the Romaria in the Whaling City for the past few years. “My first Romaria was when I was 12 years old,” he told The Anchor. “It was more of a curiosity thing. But I began for good when I was 22 and someone invited me to join them. Something drew me to it, and it’s become a part of me since. “This is not a tradition, but a way of life. At a certain part of the year, it starts ticking. I feel the need to prepare for the upcoming Romaria. It’s like a calendar. You need a deep faith in order to do it right. The feelings have to come from within.” Clementino and Farias are part of group of brothers who chose to return to their St. Michael’s roots and walk in an eight-day Romaria that began in Assonet last Saturday. This was a pilgrimage of pri-
vate devotion, not sponsored by the Diocese of Fall River, and will conclude tomorrow. The 151-mile trek takes the group of 14, with 12 participating all eight days, through Assonet, East Freetown, New Bedford, Acushnet, Fairhaven, Dartmouth, Westport, Fall River, Somerset, Swansea, Seekonk, the Attleboros, Norton and North Dighton, arriving back in Assonet tomorrow. “Most of us who are walking grew up with this,” said Joe Camara, one of the originators of the personal pilgrimage. “As a child in the Azores, I would participate. The way things are in the world today, we felt a need to spread God’s word through the example of prayer, song and sacrifice.” Camara told The Anchor that when the group is walking through populated areas, they will sing “Hail Mary, Holy Mary,” continuously. “When we’re in the open spaces, we’ll pray the Rosary continuously. This is the way it was done in the old country.” Camara said the Romeiros’ prayers are serious. “We get requests from people to pray for them, but they must realize, they too, have an obligation,” he explained. “If we pray for them, they must promise to pray for us as well. So if someone asks us to pray a Hail Mary for them, they must say one Hail Mary for each of the brothers on the journey. So if there are 14 of us, that means there are really 17 of us, because we always include the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as part of us. So the person would have to promise to say 17 Hail Marys. If a person asks for a Rosary, than they are obligated to pray 17 Rosaries. That’s how prayers multiply.” Camara added that now, more than ever, prayers need to multiply in this country. “Six people can go to Washington, D.C. and change the laws of God,” he said. “We have to stand up for God.” Clementino said he was looking forward to walking in the personal eight-day pilgrimage. “In the Azores, I remember just meditating as we walked through Mother Nature. It was a different type of meditating. I loved doing it. I fell in love with the Romarias as a young boy, and I still love it today. I learn day by day. “Romarias are not just one day, or one eight-day event. It’s a 365day pilgrimage. The Portuguese have a saying, ‘There’s a time for everything.’ That means we must live each day of our lives on that pilgrimage with God. There’s a time for praying, and a time for laughing and a time for meditating. Everything has a time. But it’s all part of our spiritual journey.”
N.Y. Catholic conference opposes ‘chemical digestion’ of human remains
New York City, N.Y. (CNA) — A bill that redefines cremation, to include the “chemical digestion” of human remains into liquid waste, has met with rejection from the New York State Catholic Conference. “The Church’s reverence for the sacredness of the human body and its dignity arises out of concern for both the body’s natural and supernatural properties,” the conference said in a March 19 memorandum on a bill under consideration in the state legislature. “It is therefore essential that the body of a deceased person be treated with respect and reverence. Processes involving chemical digestion of human remains do not sufficiently respect this dignity.” The proposed change to New York’s nonprofit corporation law would revise its definition of “cremation.” Along with its conventional meaning, “cremation” could include “any chemical process” that breaks down a human body. One such procedure, the conference noted in its memo to the
legislature, is “alkaline hydrolysis.” The rarely-used process has been publicized in recent years as a “green” alternative to conventional cremation, which involves the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Alkaline hydrolysis involves using lye to dissolve bodies into a liquid substance, which proponents say can be safely poured down a drain. It is also referred to as “bio-cremation.” Along with its concern for the dignity of the human body, New York’s Catholic conference is also worried that the bill could also lead to some individuals being “bio-cremated” against their will. If the legal definition of cremation changes, the conference noted, individuals who request to be cremated after death — in the traditional sense — could inadvertently have their bodies dissolved into a waste product, due to a misunderstanding of their expressed wishes. The conference warned that the bill “contains no safeguards to prevent this from occurring.”
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March 30, 2012
molding young minds — Victoria Rego and Kaitlin Corso, students at St. John the Evangelist School in Attleboro, got to be kindergarten teachers for the day. Here they read a Dr. Seuss book to students. They also helped out with a reading and math group. Later in the afternoon they assisted during music class.
something’s brewing — The kindergarten students at Holy Name School in Fall River were amazed watching their teacher, Cindy Piques, concoct an experimental brew recently.
great start — Coyle and Cassidy High School in Taunton recently awarded five $1,000 renewable scholarships to incoming members of the Class of 2016. The recipients of the scholarships were selected from a competitive pool of applicants who applied for admission for next year’s freshman class. Pictured from left: Vice Principal Kathleen St. Laurent; recipients Matthew Tran, Cassandra Oldfield, Nathaniel Baker, Hannah Ryder, and Joseph deMello; and President Dr. Mary Pat Tranter.
living by the sword — Bishop Feehan High School Athletic Director Paul O’Boy recently accepted a donation from a parent supporter of the Shamrock Fencing Club. In the past five years, the Shamrock fencers have boasted two individual state championships, seven squad medals, and a dozen state finalist standings. Many fencers from the Attleboro school have gone on to attend colleges with fencing teams and continue to compete. From left, front row: Alexander Boucher, Paul O’Boy, and Aurora Luce. Back row: Patrick Beagan, Daniel Staiculescu, George Dzialo, and Catherine Santarpio.
all tied up at the moment — Cristina Raposo, principal of St. James-St. John School in New Bedford, recently was taped to a wall for a leukemia and lymphoma fund-raiser. Students purchased an arm’s length of duct tape for $1 and all proceeds will be donated to Pennies for Patients. To date the school has raised more than $4,000.
March 30, 2012
his is how my mind great difficulty in my life, this works when I sit to write line became my mantra: I have these articles! This morning set my face like flint. I will not I was looking through a catabe put to shame. To me these logue and saw a T-shirt with the words reflect a philosophy of words “Don’t Swerve: Joshua 1:9.” My curiosity wouldn’t let me rest until I looked up the quote from the Book of Joshua: “Above all, be firm and steadfast, taking care to observe By Jean Revil the entire law. Do not swerve from it either to the right or to the left, steadfastness. Don’t quit, don’t that you may succeed wherever run, just keep walking. you go.” That quote reminded When we come to know me of a song called “Swerve.” Scripture, we come to rely on Although I can’t remember who Scripture. That’s the way it recorded the song, I know that should be. That’s one of the its basis comes from this quote many things that Jesus taught from Joshua. Part of the chorus us as He hung upon the cross. warns us “You can’t go left or right, keep His path in your sight. As we listen to the retelling of the Passion, we realize that in Don’t swerve.” the midst of the greatest agony When I went to the readings of His life, it was the Psalms for Palm Sunday, in the reading that Christ relied on. His prayer from Isaiah, Isaiah’s suffering echoed the words of Psalm 22: servant says “I have set my face “My God, my God, why have like flint, knowing that I shall you abandoned me?” The Word not be put to shame.” To me, it of God was sustained by the seemed that Isaiah was describword of God! So it should be ing the Messiah as One who with us. But do we know the would not swerve! Clearly God Scriptures well enough to allow was giving me the theme of this them to become the prayer of our week’s article. This single pashearts? As Lent quickly draws sage from Isaiah is so important to an end, in this final week to me personally. In a time of
Be Not Afraid
perhaps we should renew our Lenten resolutions in the areas of prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Might I suggest that in deepening our prayer lives, we turn to the Scriptures and allow ourselves to soak them in for a time. In the strength we gain from praying with Scripture, we can stand firm and be steadfast. When the words of Scripture become a source of wisdom for us, they are the first things to come to mind in our moments of joy and our moments of pain. The Scriptures need to be our guide in all aspects of our lives. We need to be faithful to Christ in our working lives, our family lives, our political lives, our social lives … in all of it. In an age when our religious freedom is under attack and faithfulness is viewed by society as a character flaw, our best response is to stand firm and not swerve. Hold fast to example of Christ, Who held fast to the Scriptures. “You can’t go left or right, keep His path in your sight. Don’t swerve!” Jean Revil teaches theology and is campus minister at Bishop Stang High School. Comments welcome at: jrevil@ bishopStang.com.
WORDS OF LIFE — Four diocesan youth were acknowledged at last week’s annual Pro-Life Mass at St. Julie Billiart Church in North Dartmouth for winning the 2012 Pro-Life Apostolate essay contest. Pictured here with Bishop George W. Coleman, center, are from left: Althea Turley, a student at St. Francis Xavier Preparatory School in Hyannis, who placed first in the Junior Division; John Patrick Martin, grade seven, a home-schooled student at St. Anthony of Padua Parish, New Bedford, who placed second in the Junior Division; Eileen Corkery, a junior at Bishop Feehan High School in Attleboro, who placed first in the High School Division; and Meghan Ritchie, a senior at Coyle and Cassidy High School in Taunton, who placed second in the High School Division. (Photo by Kenneth J. Souza)
17 The Anchor is always pleased to run news and photos about our diocesan youth. If schools or parish Religious Education programs, have newsworthy stories and photos they would like to share with our readers, send them to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Around the Diocese 4/1
A three-part Lenten series entitled “I have come that they may have life ... abundantly” and led by Anna Rae-Kelly will begin Sunday at 4 p.m. in the Welcome Center at the National Shrine of Our Lady of La Salette, 947 Park Street in Attleboro. The series will resume on April 2 and 3 at 7:15 p.m. in the Reconciliation Chapel. All are welcome. For more information see www.annaprae.com.
An hour of reflection and prayer followed by the celebration of Mass will be held Monday through Wednesday of Holy Week, April 2-4, beginning at 11 a.m. in the St. Joseph Chapel on the grounds of Holy Cross Family Ministries, 518 Washington Street, Easton. Presenters include Father Leo Polselli, CSC, chaplain of the Father Peyton Center; Father Stephen Wilbricht, CSC, faculty member at Stonehill College; and Laetitia Rhatigan, mission director of Family Rosary in Albany, N.Y. The presentations will focus on the meaning of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter. For more information call 508-238-4095 or visit www.familyrosary.org/events.
The Divine Mercy Holy Hour will be sung at 7 p.m. at Holy Trinity Church, Route 28, West Harwich, beginning on April 9 and continue all week through April 14. There will be a Mercy Sunday (no Mass) celebration on April 15 at 2:45 p.m. No Confessions will be available on Divine Mercy Sunday. For more information call 508-430-0014.
Learn how to release the power of the Holy Spirit in your life during a Life in the Spirit seminar at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, Taunton Ave, in Seekonk every Wednesday evening at 7 p.m. beginning April 11 through May 23. For more information call Marie at 508-336-6781.
The Divorced and Separated Support Group will meet on April 12 beginning at 7 p.m. to discuss “Facing Your Depression” as part of its Divorce Care Series. This segment will offer constructive ways to deal with depression. The meeting will be held in the parish center of St. Julie Billiart Church, 494 Slocum Road in North Dartmouth. For more information call 508-678-2828, 508-993-0589, or 508-673-2997.
Holy Trinity Women’s Guild will host a Spring Penny Sale on April 15 at 1 p.m. in the church basement on the corner of Tucker Street and Stafford Road in Fall River. There will be raffles, door prizes and a luncheon menu including Chow Mein, sandwiches, chourico and peppers, pastries and more. For information call 508-678-6941.
Christ the King Catholic Women’s Club will host a scholarship fund-raiser titled “Swing into Spring to the Sounds of the Big Bands” featuring Ray Caviccio on April 21 in the Christ the King parish hall in Mashpee. Cocktails will be served beginning at 5 p.m. with dinner catered by Chef Roland at 6 p.m. For tickets or more information call 508-4574212.
A “Fire of Love” Youth Rally featuring music minister Martin Doman will be held April 28 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (including Mass) at St. Margaret’s Church in Buzzards Bay. The rally is open to all youth in grades eight to 12 and is perfect for Confirmation classes. To sign up, call 508-759-7777 or email email@example.com. For more information visit www.martindoman.com.
Registration is now open for Project Bread’s 20-mile Walk for Hunger on May 6 in Boston. The effort will help fund hunger relief through emergency programs, schools, community health centers, farmers’ markets, community suppers, home care organizations and other programs. For information or to register visit www.projectbread.org or call 617-723-5000.
Adoption by Choice, a program of Catholic Social Services, provides confidential, free, supportive pregnancy counseling to individuals experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. Their licensed counselors are available to meet with individuals and their families whenever they might need someone to share concerns with about an unplanned pregnancy and the future of the baby. If you or someone you know might want to explore the agency’s services, call 508-674-4681 or visit the CSS website at www.cssdioc.org.
The Anchor Visit the Diocese of Fall River website at fallriverdiocese.org The site includes links to parishes, diocese offices and national sites.
In Your Prayers Please pray for these priests during the coming weeks March 31 Rt. Rev. Msgr. George C. Maxwell, Pastor, SS. Peter & Paul, Fall River, 1953 April 1 Rev. George A. Lewin, Pastor, St. Mary, Hebronville, 1958 Rev. Edwin J. Loew, Pastor, St. Joseph, Woods Hole, 1974 April 2 Rev. Adolph Banach, OFM Conv., Pastor, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, New Bedford, 1961 Rev. Donald Belanger, Pastor, St. Stephen, Attleboro, 1976 Rev. James B. Coyle, Retired Pastor, St. Dorothea, Eatontown, N.J., 1993 April 3 Rev. Henry F. Kinnerny, Former Pastor, St. Peter, Sandwich, 1905 Rev. Roger G. Blain, OP, 2000 Rev. Clarence P. Murphy, Former Pastor, Our Lady of the Assumption, Osterville, 2010 April 4 Rev. Lionel Gamache, S.M.M., 1972 Rev. James F. McCarthy, Retired Pastor, Sacred Heart, Fall River, 1985 Rev. Gaspar L. Parente, Retired Pastor, St. Theresa, Patagonia, Az., 1991 April 6 Rev. Philip Lariscy, O.S.A. Founder of the New Bedford Mission, 1824 Rev. Edward J. Mongan, Retired Pastor, St. Mary, North Attleboro, 1920 Rev. Msgr. John A. Chippendale, Retired Pastor, St. Patrick, Wareham, 1977 Rev. Lorenzo Morais, Retired Pastor, St. George, Westport, 1980 Rev. Msgr. William D. Thomson, Retired Pastor, St. Francis Xavier, Hyannis, 1987 Rev. Gerald E. Conmy, CSC, Associate Pastor, St. Ann, DeBary, Fla., 1994 Rev. Msgr. Francis J. Gilligan, P.A. STD, Archdiocese of St. Paul, 1997 Rev. Lucien Jusseaume, Chaplain, Our Lady’s Haven, Fairhaven, Retired Pastor, St. Roch, Fall River, 2001 LENTEN PAMPHLETS
March 30, 2012
Eucharistic Adoration in the Diocese
Acushnet — Eucharistic adoration takes place at St. Francis Xavier Parish on Monday and Tuesday from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Wednesday from 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Thursday from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. Evening prayer and Benediction is held Monday through Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. ATTLEBORO — The National Shrine of Our Lady of La Salette holds eucharistic adoration in the Shrine Church every Saturday from 1 to 4 p.m. through November 17. ATTLEBORO — St. Joseph Church holds eucharistic adoration in the Adoration Chapel located at the (south) side entrance at 208 South Main Street, Sunday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Brewster — Eucharistic adoration takes place in the La Salette Chapel in the lower level of Our Lady of the Cape Church, 468 Stony Brook Road, on First Fridays following the 11 a.m. Mass until 7:45 a.m. on the First Saturday, concluding with Benediction and Mass. buzzards Bay — Eucharistic adoration takes place at St. Margaret Church, 141 Main Street, every first Friday after the 8 a.m. Mass and ending the following day before the 8 a.m. Mass. East Freetown — Eucharistic adoration takes place at St. John Neumann Church every Monday (excluding legal holidays) 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the Our Lady, Mother of All Nations Chapel. (The base of the bell tower). East Sandwich — Eucharistic adoration takes place at the Corpus Christi Parish Adoration Chapel, 324 Quaker Meeting House Road, Monday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday, 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. Also, 24-hour eucharistic adoration takes place on the First Friday of every month. EAST TAUNTON — Eucharistic adoration takes place in the chapel at Holy Family Parish Center, 438 Middleboro Avenue, Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. On First Fridays, eucharistic adoration takes place at Holy Family Church, 370 Middleboro Avenue, from 8:30 a.m. until 7:45 p.m. FAIRHAVEN — St. Mary’s Church, Main St., has eucharistic adoration every Wednesday from 8:30 a.m. to noon in the Chapel of Reconciliation, with Benediction at noon. Also, there is a First Friday Mass each month at 7 p.m., followed by a Holy Hour with eucharistic adoration. Refreshments follow. Fall River — SS. Peter and Paul Parish will have eucharistic adoration on March 30 in the parish chapel, 240 Dover Street, from 8:30 a.m. until noon.
Fall River — Espirito Santo Parish, 311 Alden Street, Fall River. Eucharistic adoration on Mondays following the 8 a.m. Mass until Rosary and Benediction at 6:30 p.m. FALL RIVER — Notre Dame Church, 529 Eastern Ave., has eucharistic adoration on Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the chapel.
FALL RIVER — St. Anthony of the Desert Church, 300 North Eastern Avenue, has eucharistic adoration Mondays and Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. FALL RIVER — Holy Name Church, 709 Hanover Street, has eucharistic adoration Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the Our Lady of Grace Chapel. FALL RIVER — Good Shepherd Parish has eucharistic adoration every Friday following the 8 a.m. Mass until 6 p.m. in the Daily Mass Chapel. There is a bilingual Holy Hour in English and Portuguese from 5-6 p.m. Park behind the church and enter the back door of the connector between the church and the rectory. Falmouth — St. Patrick’s Church has eucharistic adoration each First Friday, following the 9 a.m. Mass until Benediction at 4:30 p.m. The Rosary is recited Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. HYANNIS — A Holy Hour with eucharistic adoration will take place each First Friday at St. Francis Xavier Church, 347 South Street, beginning immediately after the 12:10 p.m. Mass and ending with adoration at 4 p.m. MASHPEE — Christ the King Parish, Route 151 and Job’s Fishing Road has 8:30 a.m. Mass every First Friday with special intentions for Respect Life, followed by 24 hours of eucharistic adoration in the Chapel, concluding with Benediction Saturday morning followed immediately by an 8:30 Mass. NEW BEDFORD — Eucharistic adoration takes place 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesdays at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, 233 County Street, with night prayer and Benediction at 8:45 p.m., and Confessions offered during the evening. NEW BEDFORD — There is a daily holy hour from 5:15-6:15 p.m. Monday through Thursday at St. Anthony of Padua Church, 1359 Acushnet Avenue. It includes adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, Liturgy of the Hours, recitation of the Rosary, and the opportunity for Confession. NORTH DARTMOUTH — Eucharistic adoration takes place at St. Julie Billiart Church, 494 Slocum Road, every Tuesday from 7 to 8 p.m., ending with Benediction. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is available at this time. NORTH DIGHTON — Eucharistic adoration takes place every First Friday at St. Nicholas of Myra Church, 499 Spring Street following the 8 a.m. Mass, ending with Benediction at 6 p.m. The Rosary is recited Monday through Friday from 7:30 to 8 a.m.
OSTERVILLE — Eucharistic adoration takes place at Our Lady of the Assumption Church, 76 Wianno Avenue on First Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and every Friday from noon to 5 p.m., with Benediction at 5 p.m. SEEKONK — Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish has eucharistic adoration seven days a week, 24 hours a day in the chapel at 984 Taunton Avenue. For information call 508336-5549. Taunton — Eucharistic adoration takes place every Tuesday at St. Anthony Church, 126 School Street, following the 8 a.m. Mass with prayers including the Chaplet of Divine Mercy for vocations, concluding at 6 p.m. with Chaplet of St. Anthony and Benediction. Recitation of the Rosary for peace is prayed Monday through Saturday at 7:30 a.m. prior to the 8 a.m. Mass. WAREHAM — Every First Friday, eucharistic adoration takes place from 8:30 a.m. through Benediction at 5:30 p.m. Morning prayer is prayed at 9; the Angelus at noon; the Divine Mercy Chaplet at 3 p.m.; and Evening Prayer at 5 p.m. WEST HARWICH — Our Lady of Life Perpetual Adoration Chapel at Holy Trinity Parish, 246 Main Street (Rte. 28), holds perpetual eucharistic adoration. We are a regional chapel serving all of the surrounding parishes. All from other parishes are invited to sign up to cover open hours. For open hours, or to sign up call 508-430-4716. WOODS HOLE — Eucharistic adoration takes place at St. Joseph’s Church, 33 Millfield Street, year-round on weekdays 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. No adoration on Sundays, Wednesdays, and holidays. For information call 508-274-5435.
March 30, 2012
LIFE PRESERVERS — This year’s recipients of the youth and adult John Cardinal O’Connor Awards presented during the annual Pro-Life Mass last week at St. Julie Billiart Church in North Dartmouth and sponsored by the diocesan Pro-Life Apostolate were both members of St. Nicholas of Myra Parish in North Dighton. Pictured here with their pastor, Father Timothy Goldrick, far left, and Bishop George W. Coleman is Neil Caswell, youth award recipient and Gregory Bettencourt, who received the adult award. (Photo by Kenneth J. Souza)
Bishop Stang announces new president/principal continued from page one
sibilities formerly shared by two administrators, school president and school principal. Shaughnessy has been principal at Bishop Stang since 2010, following a year in which he served as school’s athletic director and as a theology teacher. The appointment of Shaughnessy was approved by Bishop George W. Coleman and announced by diocesan School Superintendent Dr. Michael Griffin. In his announcement Griffin said, “Mr. Shaughnessy has demonstrated excellent school leadership and a clear commitment to the mission of Catholic education at Bishop Stang. I am confident that he will work well with all constituencies of the school, and will successfully guide Bishop Stang High School into its next era of growth and development.” Dougall has been president of Bishop Stang since 1994 and in total has served the school for 44 years in teaching, coaching and administrative roles. She is also a graduate of the school. “Mrs. Dougall touched the lives of thousands of young people, both by her direct service to them as a teacher and coach, and by her institutional leadership that ensured their experience of an excellent education grounded in Catholic faith,” said Griffin. Prior to his coming to Bishop Stang High, Shaughnessy was an assistant principal at St. Francis High School in Wheaton, Ill., and was a Theology Department chairman, campus minister, theology teacher, and varsity tennis coach at Mount Carmel High School in Chicago, Ill. He currently serves on the school board of St. Francis Xavier Parish in Acushnet, the state football committee of the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Asso-
ciation and the board of directors of the Massachusetts Secondary Schools Administrators Association. “It is an honor to be named the next president/principal of Bishop Stang,” Shaughnessy commented. “I look forward to working with the Stang family to continue our rich tradition of excellence, and to provide our students a dynamic Catholic education that rigorously prepares them for the challenges of college, the workplace and life.” Shaughnessy attended Canisius College where he earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and English literature and played four years of NCAA Division I college tennis. He holds master’s degrees in theology and pastoral studies, from Loyola University of Chicago, and one in educational leadership and administration from Benedictine University. Originally from Buffalo, N.Y., he currently resides in New Bedford with his wife, Anabela Vasconcelos Shaughnessy, a 1994 Stang graduate, and their four children. In April, the retiring Dougall will be honored by the National Catholic Educational Association with its Outstanding Secondary Educator Award. In 2002 she received the Distinguished Administrator Award for the Diocese of Fall River. Under her leadership, Bishop Stang High School was named a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence in 1996. During her years as president, Dougall also served on the NCEA Secondary Department’s Executive Committee from 1999-2006. As she prepares to leave at the end of the school year, Dougall said she is “confident that the academic excellence, mission effectiveness and family atmosphere that distinguishes Bishop Stang
High School will continue and only be enhanced with Shaughnessy as president/principal.”
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March 30, 2012
Paschal Triduum Services
Holy Thursday: 7 pm - Mass of the Lord’s Supper Good Friday: 12:10 pm - Stations of the Cross in Church - Children 3 pm - Stations of the Cross in Church - Adults 7 pm - Celebration of the Lord’s Passion Holy Saturday: 11 am-Noon - Confessions 7 pm - Solemn Vigil of Easter Easter Sunday: Masses at 6, 7, 8:30, 10:30 am and Noon