Diocese of Fall River
F riday , September 11, 2009
Catholic educators upbeat as new school year begins New testing will help ensure students exceed competency levels
By Deacon James N. Dunbar
ON EAGLE’S WINGS — Parishioners of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Seekonk gathered with Boy Scout John Gregorek of Troop 1, Seekonk, for the blessing of a Prayer Garden and Way of the Cross Gregorek created on the parish property as a project for his Eagle Scout Award. See page 17 for a story on the parish’s recent family retreat.
Sen. Kennedy allegedly helped kill Mass. marriage amendment By Christine M. Williams Anchor Correspondent
BOSTON — On June 14, 2007 traditional marriage supporters gathered on Beacon Hill to watch legislators vote on the marriage amendment. They had conducted the most successful signature drive in Massachusetts history and endured repeated delays from the Legislature. Outside the chambers, they watched the roll call on a live feed provided by the media. As the votes came in, they began to realize that the measure would never make it to the citizens of the Commonwealth. Just one day before the bill was struck down, enough legislators had pledged their support to pass it forward. But in the final hours
before the vote, 11 elected officials switched their allegiance and left marriage supporters to speculate on what influenced the about-face. Now, more than two years later, there has been a revelation about the political pressure placed on those legislators. Less than two days after the death of Sen. Ted Kennedy, an article published in Bay Windows, a Boston-based gay advocacy newspaper, announced that the late senator “played a critical role” in blocking the marriage amendment. The August 27 Bay Windows article by Marc Solomon thanked Sen. Kennedy for his role, saying Kennedy “delivered marriage to Massachusetts.” One of the senator’s staffers asked Solomon for a list of legisla-
tors targeted by same-sex marriage advocates as being the most likely to change their position. Then, he told Solomon to keep the conversation secret, saying, “Don’t tell anyone I’m asking for this.” A few days later, Solomon heard from legislators that Kennedy had called them. “When Ted Kennedy called, people listened. And they acted. He was a brilliant strategist,” wrote Solomon, then-head of MassEquality, a homosexual lobby group. “Our opponents needed the votes of only 25 percent of the legislature to advance a citizen-led amendment to the ballot. We had lined up two-thirds of the legislature through fieldwork, lobbying, media, literally everything we could think of. But getting those last 15 legislators — those conservative Democrats from working class Massachusetts communities and a few libertarian-leaning Republicans — was very tough,” he wrote. Kennedy came in “to finish the job” and once it had been completed, Kennedy congratulated Solomon, telling him, “What you Turn to page 18
FALL RIVER — Catholic schools in the Fall River Diocese began opening their doors for the fall semester last week. While sacrificing Catholic parents have long experienced the advantages of an education in which faith plays a guiding role, and statistics reveal Catholic schools provide an immeasurably greater learning resource per dollar spent, questions continue to arise about how they academically compare to public schools. One of the issues most frequently talked about is why students in Catholic schools in the Commonwealth are not allowed by the state to take the various Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System competency determination tests. Better known as MCAS tests, they are mandated by the Massachusetts Education Reform Law of 1993 for all students in public schools and collaboratives being educated at public expense. “Our students in Catholic school are not allowed to
take them,” reported George A. Milot, superintendent of Catholic schools in the Fall River Diocese. “It makes us angry because we work diligently to show that our students do demonstrate through their coursework that they have the knowledge and skills to meet and exceed the state’s passing standards,” he added. “And our students are also shortchanged because they are ineligible to vie for the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship based in part on student achievement on the MCAS English Language Arts and Mathematics tests,” he explained. While efforts have been made over the year to allow Catholic school students take the MCAS tests, “the talk is always that the state doesn’t have the money to fund it,” reported Milot. “For us preparing our students to meet the challenges of being good Catholics and productive citizens throughout their lifetime as well as being successful in their professions and emTurn to page 18
DOUBLE DUTY — Father Paul A. Caron, pastor at St. Rita’s Parish in Marion, assumed this week additional pastoral duties at the nearby St. Anthony’s Parish in Mattapoisett. Father Caron will now be pastor at both parishes. (Photo by Kenneth J. Souza)
Father Caron looks forward to taking on double parish duty B y K enneth J. S ouza A nchor S taff
MARION — Although Father Paul A. Caron will officially take over as pastor of
St. Anthony’s Parish in Mattapoisett this weekend, he’s actually been preparing to take on the double-duty since being Turn to page 15
News From the Vatican
September 11, 2009
People must be more humble, less materialistic, pope says
VATICAN CITY — In a world full of vice and sin, people need to radically change their lives, becoming more humble and less materialistic, Pope Benedict XVI said. “May we be able to find the source of joy that comes from God’s goodness” and say “no” to the vices of the world, he said at his weekly general audience September 2. The pope, resuming a series of audience talks about influential Christian writers from the Middle Ages, focused his catechesis on St. Odo, a 10th-century Benedictine monk and abbot of Cluny, France. St. Odo urged his monks and the faithful to face “the enormity of vices widespread throughout society” by undergoing “a radical change in life based on humility, austerity and detachment from ephemeral things and participation with the eternal,” said the pope. The saint refused to become pessimistic or sink into despair even when there was so much sin and evil in the world, the pope said, because he knew “divine mercy is always available” for those who yearn for conversion. The merciful God “persecutes sins and yet he protects the sinner,” the pope quoted St. Odo as saying. He said the saint was also extremely devoted to the Eucharist and emphasized the real and substantial presence of Christ under the species of bread and wine. St.
Odo deplored the “widespread neglect” of this sacred mystery, which was poorly observed at the time and lacking in the celebration of Mass, said the pope. St. Odo worked to reform the clergy on this matter and stressed the need for being worthy when receiving the Eucharist, the pope said. He warned priests against coming to the altar in a state of sin lest they “stain the bread, that is, the body of Christ,” the pope said, citing the saint’s words. St. Odo insisted that “only he who is spiritually united to Christ can worthily participate” in the eucharistic celebration, said the pope. If those who have distanced themselves from Christ “eat his body and drink his blood, it would not be beneficial, but condemnable,” he said. The saint taught the salvation of the world depends on the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist. The pope underlined the importance of embracing this truth “with renewed strength” because the presence of God, the creator, among humanity “transforms us, and just as he transformed bread and wine, he transforms the world.” The pope flew to the Vatican by helicopter from Castel Gandolfo, south of Rome, to lead the general audience in the Paul VI hall before about 8,000 pilgrims from around the world.
CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy (CNS) — Pope Benedict XVI said Catholic parents should make sure to create a “fertile spiritual terrain” for priestly vocations as they educate their children in the faith. The pope, speaking at a Sunday blessing at his summer residence outside Rome, said he hoped for a vocations revival in the Year for Priests, which began in June. The year marks the 150th anniversary of St. John Vianney, the patron saint of parish priests. “When couples dedicate themselves generously to the education of their children, guiding and orienting them toward the discovery of God’s design of love, they
prepare that fertile spiritual terrain where vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life arise and mature,” the pope said. He offered a prayer that in the Year for Priests, “Christian families may become small churches in which all the vocations and charisms given by the Holy Spirit will be welcomed and valued.” The pope said the history of Christianity features innumerable examples of saintly parents and families, including Blessed Luigi and Maria Beltrame Quattrocchi, who were beatified in 2001. The couple had four children, including two sons who became priests.
Pope says families should create ‘spiritual terrain’ for vocations
OFFICIAL NEWSPAPER OF THE DIOCESE OF FALL RIVER Vol. 53, No. 34
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Vatican dossier highlights tragedy of infant mortality By Sarah Delaney Catholic News Service
VATICAN CITY — Efforts to reduce infant mortality around the world are showing positive results, but maternal death rates remain very high in many developing nations, according to a report by the Vatican news agency Fides. In addition, the number of neonatal deaths — babies who die within 28 days of birth — is improving but at a very slow rate, the report said. The document demonstrated the huge gulf that continues between industrialized and poorer countries in maternal, neonatal and pediatric care. Fides, the news agency of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, recently issued a dossier that summarized statistics from international organizations, including UNICEF, the World Health Organization and the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization. Infant mortality, defined as child deaths before they reach the age of five, claimed an estimated 9.2 million lives in 2007, the dossier said. That number is a significant improvement from 1990 when death claimed some 13 million children
under five. The hardest-hit areas remain sub-Saharan Africa and southern Asia, while the greatest improvement came in Southeast Asia and North Africa. According to the dossier, improvements were concentrated in the more affluent areas of society, in urban areas and among children whose mothers had some schooling. The dossier quoted a UNICEF report showing that 536,000 women died because of problems related to pregnancy and childbirth, again concentrated in the least-developed parts of the world. “A woman from one of the leastdeveloped countries is at a 300 times greater risk of dying in her lifetime because of pregnancy and birth-related complications than a woman in an industrialized country,” the dossier said. Little progress has been made, it said, toward the U.N. Millennium Development Goal of reducing the maternal mortality rate by two-thirds by 2015, because of the lack of significant improvement in investment in health facilities and medicines and the lack of qualified personnel in developing countries.
Efforts to educate and test women for AIDS in such countries have made some inroads but much needs to be done, the report said. The health of the mother naturally influences greatly the health of the baby both before and after he or she is born, and a baby whose mother dies giving birth has a much smaller chance of survival in situations of poverty, according to the Fides report. It said neonatal deaths reached 3.7 million in 2004, the latest year statistics were available from the World Health Organization. Of that number, the percentage of newborns who die within one day is at least 25 percent, while 75 percent of such deaths occur within the first week. The main causes for deaths in these situations are hunger or malnutrition, lack of prenatal care, little access to qualified medical personnel, shortages in testing equipment and medicines, and failure to carry out vaccinations. Other causes include social and cultural factors, such as pregnancies in adolescents; girls under the age of 18 who have babies run a much greater risk of either dying in childbirth or losing their children at an early age.
September 11, 2009
The International Church
Zimbabwean refugees, noting that he has “seen other governments that are not as open.” The police-run detention center in Musina that the delegation visited takes Zimbabweans who have crossed the border without documentation to the local South African Home Affairs office to fill out asylum papers, then releases them. “This gives them a chance to establish themselves as asylum seekers,” Bishop Wester said. He said the Zimbabweans he spoke to during the Limpopo vis-
SIFTING THROUGH RUBBLE — A girl walks next to a damaged house after a magnitude 7 earthquake shook Pangalengan, Indonesia, recently. The quake rattled Indonesia’s main island, Java, forcing thousands to evacuate, the nation’s disaster management agency said. (CNS photo/Supri, Reuters)
U.S. Church leaders: Zimbabwean refugees in South Africa need more aid
MAKHADO, South Africa (CNS) — Churches, the South African government and other agencies need to step up their help to Zimbabweans crossing the border into South Africa as the numbers increase, said members of a U.S. Catholic delegation. Without Church and other groups helping Zimbabwean refugees in South Africa’s Limpopo province, “many people wouldn’t survive” after crossing the border from Zimbabwe, said Kevin Appleby, director of migration and refugee policy for the U.S. bishops in Washington. He told Catholic News Service “the most vulnerable are women, victims of violence and unaccompanied minors.” Appleby, Bishop John C. Wester of Salt Lake City and Anastasia Brown, director of refugee programs for the U.S. bishops’ Migration and Refugee Services, visited Limpopo August 31-September 2 as part of a larger U.S. Catholic delegation’s August 28-September 6 visit to South Africa. For some Zimbabweans, resettlement in another country is their “only hope,” Appleby said, noting that they “are targets at home and in South Africa” with its high level of xenophobia. Brown said many Zimbabwean women “told me of their persecution.” Some were victims of “sexual violence for political purposes, one had seen her husband beaten to death and another had seen two people shot” in Zimbabwe, she said, noting that “political violence is continuing in Zimbabwe” despite the formation of a coalition government there in February. Thandi Hadebe, project director with Jesuit Relief Service in Makhado, about 120 miles from
the Zimbabwean border, said agency workers see “fewer people coming with stories of beatings” than in 2008, but added she has heard stories of intimidation and violence from Zimbabweans who fled recently. Hadebe said JRS staffers counsel victims of torture and people who have been traumatized. “A lot of people come (to South Africa) with high hopes,” she said, “but they can’t find a place to live and find that the grass is not so green on the other side of the fence.” The trafficking of girls is a problem, Hadebe said, noting that “some parents pay people to bring their daughters to join them in South Africa and they never see them again.” Young Zimbabwean girls in Limpopo’s towns “need an intervention so that they don’t end up in prostitution,” Brown said, noting that she “heard stories of trafficking of girls for sexual and labor purposes.” Brown said South Africa needs a “robust education campaign” so its citizens “understand the vulnerabilities of Zimbabweans coming into their country, even in the face of their own difficulties” of high unemployment and poverty. The Zimbabweans the U.S. group saw coming through the official border post at Beitbridge September 1 were “not in the same condition as those we saw in the shelters” run by churches in Musina and Makhado, Brown said. Refugees in shelters had climbed through a barbed-wire fence and walked miles to get to South Africa, Brown said, noting that those crossing officially were “dressed fairly well and looked healthier.” The children in the shelters
are “particularly vulnerable” and need a “much larger-scale response” from South African authorities as well as the international community, Brown said. Bishop Wester said he was “impressed with the work” he saw being done by the churches, nongovernmental organizations and the South African government. The group saw three South African soldiers patrolling the three-layer barbed-wire fence that marks the border between South Africa and Zimbabwe. “I could tell that the soldier I spoke to was genuinely troubled by what he saw, the evidence of women being raped and beaten up” as they made their way across the Limpopo River and through the African bush, Bishop Wester said. The soldier “kept shaking his head and touching his heart,” he said. The river bed was dry when the delegation saw it September 1. At its fullest, there are still places where people can cross the river on foot, but there are dangers of being eaten by crocodiles or washed away, Tobias Hlambelo, a Zimbabwean who works for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees in Musina, told the delegation. Hlambelo said the gangs at the border that rape and steal from Zimbabweans are fellow Zimbabweans “preying on our own people.” Speaking the local language, the thieves “lure those trying to flee and take their money,” said Hlambelo, who was an opposition activist in Zimbabwe when he fled in 2004 after being captured and tortured by President Robert Mugabe’s forces. Bishop Wester said South Africa seems to have “positioned itself as a welcoming country” for
it “seem very patient, very longsuffering. There is a graciousness about them.” Bishop Wester said that, at a night shelter for boys in Musina, a 13-year-old who “had faced great dangers in crossing the border” told him he “wants to work to support his family back home.” A Zimbabwean mother told him “she had left her children with her parents and came alone” to try to earn money to send back to them, Bishop Wester said. “They make great sacrifices for their families,” he said.
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September 20 Reducing Stress and Finding Peace & Health – Presenter: Fr. Bob Masciocchi, CSS September 20
Family and Generational Issues – Presenter: Dr. Joseph Coyle, Christian Psychologist
October 14 Day Retreat for Women - The Lord’s Prayer: So Much More Than Familiar – Presenters: Jerri Lou Buffo & Sue Gormley October 18 Traveling the Way of Salvation With Jesus as Healer and Divine Provider – Presenter: Dr. Hugh C. Boyle, Jr., Christian Psychologist October 18
A Day for Married Couples – Presenters: Fr. Bob Masciocchi, CSS & Team
October 23-25 October 28
Women’s Retreat – Presenters: Sr. Miriam Patrice McKeon, SCH, Jerri Lou Buffo, & Sue Gormley
Oct 31- Nov 1 November 8
A Silent Retreat – Presenters: Gerard Thomas and Fr. Bob Masciocchi, CSS
Care for the Caregiver – Presenter: Jacqueline M. Sitte, RN, CARN, LADC I
Healing Anxiety and Depression – Presenter: Dr. Joseph Coyle, Christian Psychologist
November 11 Day Retreat for Women - Healthy & Holy Under Stress – Instead of Being a Holy Terror Presenters: Jerri Lou Buffo & Sue Gormley Nov 13-15 November 22 December 6
Life in the Spirit – Presenters: Fr. Bob Masciocchi, CSS and Team
Daybreak: Finding Peace, Healing, Resilience, & Hope – Presenter: Jacqueline M. Sitte, RN, CARN, LADC I
Day Retreat for Women - Make our Heart Your Dwelling Place – Presenters: Jerri Lou Buffo & Sue Gormley
Discovering Our True Self & Our Inner Gift- edness – Presenter: Fr. Bob Masciocchi, CSS
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The Church in the U.S.
September 11, 2009
Diocese preparing for influx of world leaders for G-20 summit
PITTSBURGH (CNS) — The Diocese of Pittsburgh is preparing for what will be an unprecedented event in area history: Pittsburgh will host the Group of 20 Summit September 24-25. The summit, a gathering of representatives from the world’s 19 largest national economies and the European Union, will primarily address policies and programs to deal with the impact of this past year’s worldwide recession. President Barack Obama will be in Pittsburgh for the summit along with many other world leaders. Pittsburgh Bishop David A. Zubik sees the summit as an opportunity for prayer and reflection on the social teachings of the Church. Urging an atmosphere of welcome and hospitality to the G-20 participants, Bishop Zubik also called for prayers throughout the diocese that summit leaders might “be guided by a true sense of service, a true dedication to peace and a true desire to create a world where poverty can diminish and wealth is shared more generously.” Mass schedules will be provided to all area hotels for use by the summit participants, and Bishop Zubik has asked each parish to consider holding eucharistic adoration during the two-day summit. As part of G-20 preparations, the diocese will take part September 25 in an interfaith and ecumenical prayer service with representatives of many Pittsburgh faith communities. The evening service will take place at St. Paul Cathedral in Pittsburgh’s Oakland neighborhood. Separate devotions, sponsored by the Catholic Men’s Fellowship of Pittsburgh and the Legion of
Mary, are scheduled during the summit. The rosary and chaplet of Divine Mercy will be prayed daily at St. Paul Seminary, where 40 hours of eucharistic adoration will take place during the G-20 meetings. In a letter to pastors, William Batz, diocesan general secretary, provided bulletin inserts summarizing Catholic social teaching and general intercessions for use in weekend Masses prior to the summit. Noting that the Pittsburgh Catholic diocesan newspaper was publishing a four-part series on Pope Benedict XVI’s newest encyclical, “Charity in Truth,” Batz wrote that the summit “provides a wonderful opportunity for education and formation in the basics of Catholic social teaching.” Parishes and Catholic institutions must “remain true to their purpose and not become co-opted by others with their own agenda. We cannot be used by those who would disrupt the summit by violent or invasive tactics,” Batz wrote in his letter to pastors. Summits in the past have drawn strong protests accompanied by vandalism and arrests. Officials have already implemented extraordinary security procedures in response to previous violence. Catholic institutions within the diocese are also reacting to the possibility of violence. Thirteen Catholic elementary and four high schools within Pittsburgh have said they will dismiss students early September 23 and will be closed both days of the summit With downtown Pittsburgh essentially blocked off during the summit, diocesan offices also will be closed for safety reasons; they will be staffed only with a skeleton crew.
FRUITS OF LABOR — Mykhanh Nguyen and her daughter, Katelyn, shop for homegrown green beans at the farmer’s market at St. Rose of Lima Church in Murfreesboro, Tenn., recently. Franciscan Father James Kallarackan, pastor of St. Rose, founded the farmers’ market last year. (CNS photo/Theresa Laurence, Tennessee Register)
Bishops’ annual Labor Day statement focuses on health reform debate
By Mark Pattison Catholic News Service
WASHINGTON — It is possible to bring Catholic values to the ongoing debate over health care reform just as it was done earlier this year in forging a four-way agreement on the potential unionization of workers at Catholic hospitals, said Bishop William F. Murphy of Rockville Centre, N.Y. “Leaders in Catholic health ministry, the labor movement and the Catholic bishops sought to apply our traditional teaching on work and workers and to offer some practical alternatives on how leaders of hospitals, unions and others might apply our principles as an aid to reaching agreements in their own situations,” said Bishop Murphy, chairman of the bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development. The four-way document, “Respecting the Just Rights of Workers: Guidance and Options for Catholic Health Care and Unions,” achieved “a consensus among all the parties on a set of principles, processes and guidelines for a respectful and harmonious approach to let workers in Catholic health care facilities make free choices about unionization,” he said. The bishop highlighted details of the agreement in this year’s Labor Day statement, issued annually by the chairman of the domestic justice committee. Dated September 7, Labor Day, the statement is titled “The Value of Work: The Dignity of the Human Person” and was released in Washington. As they were in “Respecting the Just Rights of Workers,” the bish-
ops are committed to bringing “the principles of Catholic social teaching” to “each serious proposal” in the health care debate, he said, and will stand firm for conscience protections and against abortion funding. Signing on to the unionization document were the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Catholic Health Association, the AFL-CIO and the Service Employees International Union, which has been seeking representation rights for workers in the health care field. The “two key values” agreed upon by the four parties were “the central role of workers themselves in making choices about representation” and “the principle of mutual agreement between employers and unions on the means and methods to assure that workers could make their choices freely and fairly,” Bishop Murphy said. “Health care is an essential good for every human person,” he added, but the Church has to remain “resolute” on “long-standing prohibitions on abortion funding and abortion mandates,” while ensuring “freedom of conscience for health care workers and institutions,” generally regarded as the right to not participate in abortionrelated activities and other procedures in which they cannot in good conscience be involved. By the same token, immigrants, most of whom “work hard, pay taxes, contribute to Social Security and are valuable members of our society, are denied access to health care services,” Bishop Murphy said. “This should not happen in a
society that respects the rights and dignity of every person,” he said, adding that immigration and other laws must “guarantee fair treatment to the millions of immigrants in our country who contribute to our economy and the common good.” Bishop Murphy also drew on Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical “Caritas in Veritate” (“Charity in Truth”), calling it “a major point of reference for us all as we give thanks to God for the meaning with which God has endowed work as a reflection of the dignity of every worker.” He quoted the pope as saying: “The primary capital to be safeguarded is the human person in his or her integrity: Man is the source, the form and the aim of all economic and social life.” Bishop Murphy also quoted what the encyclical says about “decent work” Decent work, the encyclical continued, also “makes it possible for families to meet their needs and provide schooling for children, without the children themselves being forced into labor, permits the workers to organize themselves freely, and to make their voices heard, leaves enough room for rediscovering one’s roots at a personal, familial and spiritual level, (and) guarantees those who have retired a decent standard of living.” Bishop Murphy said Labor Day is the time “to recognize the value and dignity of work and the contribution and rights of the American worker.” He also called on Catholics to remember “those without work and without hope.”
September 11, 2009
The Church in the U.S.
OMINOUS GLOW — A fire engine is parked outside a residence as the Station Fire burns in the Tujunga area of Los Angeles recently. Wildfires were burning out of control in the foothills of Los Angeles and doubled in size in the overnight hours of August 30, forcing thousands to evacuate and claiming the lives of two firefighters. (CNS photos/Mario Anzuoni, Reuters)
Three U.S. bishops revisit controversy over Obama honor at Notre Dame By Nancy Frazier O’Brien Catholic News Service
WASHINGTON — In two national Catholic publications, two U.S. archbishops and a bishop are revisiting the controversy over the honorary degree conferred on President Barack Obama by the University of Notre Dame. Retired Archbishop John R. Quinn of San Francisco and Bishop John M. D’Arcy of Fort WayneSouth Bend, Ind., the diocese in which Notre Dame is located, wrote separate articles about the matter for the August 31-September 7 issue of America magazine. Archbishop Michael J. Sheehan of Santa Fe, N.M., talked about the controversy and how it was handled at a June meeting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in an August interview with National Catholic Reporter, published in the newspaper’s August 26 edition. Archbishop Quinn said he felt the U.S. bishops’ response to the controversy “communicated several false and unintended messages” to the U.S. public, while Bishop D’Arcy said his refusal to attend the commencement ceremonies at which Obama was honored arose from his responsibility to see that Catholic universities “give public witness to the fullness of Catholic faith.” Archbishop Sheehan, as part of a wide-ranging interview with the independent Catholic weekly, said he believed the majority of U.S. bishops agreed with him that “we don’t want to isolate ourselves from the rest of America by our strong views on abortion and the other things. We need to be building bridges, not burning them.” “To make a big scene about Obama — I think a lot of the enemies of the Church are delighted to see all that,” he said. More than 70 bishops voiced their disapproval of Notre Dame’s invitation to Obama and its decision to give him an honorary degree, with some saying it violated the letter and spirit of their 2004 statement “Catholics in Political Life.” That document states: “The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms
which would suggest support for their actions.” Critics of Obama said his support of legal abortion and embryonic stem-cell research also made him an inappropriate choice to be commencement speaker at a Catholic university. The bishops discussed the controversy in executive session at their June meeting in San Antonio, and passed a resolution expressing “appreciation and support” for Bishop D’Arcy and affirming his “solicitude for (Notre Dame’s) Catholic identity and his loving care for all those the Lord has given him to sanctify, to teach and to shepherd.” In his America article, Bishop D’Arcy said the controversy was not about Obama, a replay of the 2008 elections or “whether it is appropriate for the president of the United States to speak at Notre Dame or any great Catholic university on the pressing issues of the day.” “This is what universities do,” he said. “No bishop should try to prevent that.” The central question, Bishop D’Arcy said, is: “Does a Catholic university have the responsibility to give witness to the Catholic faith and to the consequences of that faith by its actions and decisions — especially by a decision to confer its highest honor?” Bishop D’Arcy said that, in his 24 years as head of the diocese in which Notre Dame is located, “I have never interfered in the internal governance of Notre Dame or any other institution of higher learning within the diocese.” But he said a bishop “must be concerned that Catholic institutions do not succumb to the secular culture, making decisions that appear to many, including ordinary Catholics, as a surrender to a culture opposed to the truth about life and love.” Archbishop Quinn, however, said there is “deep and troubled disagreement” among the U.S. bishops about how they should speak about abortion, which he called the “most searing and volatile issue in American public life.” Archbishop Quinn urged the U.S. hierarchy to follow the “policy of cordiality” practiced by the Vatican, which “proceeds from the conviction that the integrity of Catholic teaching can never be sacrificed” but “consistently favors engagement over confrontation.
The Anchor Learning from our mistakes
Last week, our editorial argued that one of the most important lessons pastors of the Church in the United States need to draw from the history of interactions with Senator Ted Kennedy on the sanctity of human life is that a strategy of conscience-education-alone with “personally opposed, publicly pro-choice” Catholic politicians hasn’t worked. The attempt to engage, teach and help persuade such politicians to conversion didn’t succeed with Senator Kennedy and it hasn’t succeeded yet with other pro-choice Catholic legislators. To say that it hasn’t succeeded, however, is really not strong enough. It’s possible, after all, to fail a test with a grade of 59; in such a case a student would be able to take some solace that, while there are some areas in need of improvement, he was close to minimal success. If a student fails a test with close to a zero, on the other hand, he obviously needs to make some radical changes if he ever hopes to succeed. And that is closer to the candid assessment that leaders of the Church need to make relative to the education-alone strategy during the past few decades. Let us take an honest look at the numbers. When we survey the long list of pro-choice Catholic politicians from both parties — Kennedy, Kerry, Giuliani, Schwarzenegger, Daschle, Dodd, Durban, Leahy, Mikulski, Pelosi, Delahunt, Capuano, Markey, McGovern, Meehan, Granholm, Sebelius, Pataki, Richardson, Cellucci, Cuomo, and Biden to name just a handful — is it possible to say that the strategy has worked with any of them? Is it possible to point to even one success story? Another way to assess the results of the education-alone strategy is to measure the direction that pro-choice Catholic politicians have moved over the years. Even if they haven’t experienced a total conversion, have they moved closer toward limiting abortions or toward making abortions easier to access? The facts show that the vast majority of personally opposed, publicly pro-choice Catholic legislators have become far less personally opposed and far more publicly in favor over the duration of the strategy. In the initial years after Roe v. Wade, publicly pro-choice Catholic legislators generally whispered their support for abortion. They displayed a public sense of shame, letting their abortion position out just enough so that it wouldn’t cost them the votes of abortion supporters. That discomfort began to dissipate after Governor Mario Cuomo’s 1984 pro-choice defense at Notre Dame. We’ve now come to a situation when pro-choice Catholic legislators vigorously curry the favor of Planned Parenthood, NARAL Pro-Choice America and Emily’s List; scores of Catholics in Congress have the chutzpah to co-sponsor the Freedom of Choice Act, which would eliminate almost every abortion restriction ever passed at the federal or state level; and 16 out of 25 Catholic senators vote against conscience protections to prevent their fellow Catholics in the medical field from being forced to participate in abortions and sterilizations. After looking at these facts, it seems clear that the education-alone strategy has failed even to deter many Catholics in Congress from becoming among the most radical supporters, defenders, and would-be public-funders of abortion on Capitol Hill. Why has the education-alone strategy been such a colossal failure? There are several reasons, but one of the most important, and least noted, is that it shares many of the same flawed approaches as the “personally opposed, publicly pro-choice” position it seeks to remedy. Today there are many “personally opposed, publicly pro-choice” Catholic legislators for whom this phrase seems to be just an empty slogan, because they give almost no evidence that they even have any personal opposition toward abortion. At least initially, however, there were some who sincerely held that irreconcilable position. These public figures had a deep personal repugnance for abortion but, for various reasons, were uncomfortable voting in favor of any laws that would prevent others from doing what they themselves maintain they would never personally do. Many hoped that women would not choose to abort their unborn sons or daughters. Some even spoke out on why they thought abortion was wrong and supported educational endeavors to help women in difficult pregnancies learn about fetal development. No matter how much some politicians stressed education in the early days, however, it was trumped by the educational value and power of the law. The law taught forcefully that there was nothing wrong with abortion as long as a mother, and a mother alone, deemed it desirable for her physical or mental health. Even though the politicians held offices in which they could work to change what the law itself teaches about the morality of abortion, they did not exercise them; and even though they professionally were accustomed, in every piece of legislation, to imposing some notion of the good on those who disagree with them, with regard to the issue of abortion they left everything to the judgment, ill-informed or not, of the conscience of the mother. The essence of their position has been that, no matter how wrong they know abortion to be, the mother should have the right to do that wrong — a lethal, permanent wrong to her unborn child. They give the ill-informed conscience of the potential wrongdoer greater weight than the truth about abortion, the life of the unborn child, and the soul and psyche of the soon-to-be-forever-wounded mother combined. When we examine the education-alone approach of pastors with respect to pro-choice politicians, we see that it has basically become a personally opposed, publicly pro-choice position with regard to them. There’s obviously a clear personal repugnance on the part of pastors to the prochoice Catholic politicians’ separation between faith and moral action, schizophrenia between private and public personality, and lip service to the Church’s teachings. Many pastors have sought to exercise their teaching office, stating forthrightly what abortion is and what the responsibilities of all legislators are with respect to it. All of their teaching, however, has been trumped by the weightier educational value of the de facto “law” that has left everything to the conscience, however ill-informed, of the pro-choice Catholic politicians. These men and women have learned over time that, regardless of what canon law says, they are at liberty to ignore the Church’s teachings on life. Even though the U.S. bishops have taught with one voice that pro-choice Catholic legislators should not present themselves to receive holy Communion, if they pay no heed to that teaching and present themselves anyway, they have learned that in practice they will almost never be denied. With Senator Kennedy’s funeral, they have now grasped that even a 100 percent proabortion voting record will not only not prevent them from having a Catholic funeral, but will not even stop them from receiving possibly one of the most public Catholic funerals in U.S. history. The upshot — these smart men and women have concluded — is that the Church’s practice is essentially “pro-choice” with respect to “pro-choice” Catholic politicians. The politicians’ own determination in conscience, erroneous or not, is given greater weight than, combined, the truth proclaimed by the Church, the duty to protect the politicians’ souls from a potentially mortal wound, and the responsibility to do all that is possible according to one’s office to try to stop the killing. The education-alone approach has failed for the same reason that the personally opposed, publicly pro-choice position has led to massive abortion on demand: the nature of sin is that the easier it is to commit, and the fewer the consequences for doing it, the more sin we’ll have. Jesus spoke of a different way in the Gospel (Mt 18:15-18). It involves not merely general educational statements that we hope offenders will apply to themselves in conscience, but the type of one-on-one instruction traditionally called fraternal correction. If that fails, and fails repeatedly, Jesus enjoined us to regard the offender as someone who no longer belongs to the community, who is no longer a member in good standing. This may seem harsh, but we should remember that Jesus always seeks nothing but the best for his Church and for individual sinners, even obstinate sinners. Implied in Jesus’ strategy is that education involves not just information, but formation, and that you can’t form disciples without discipline. This is a lesson that, after four decades of the undeniable failure of another approach, we need to consider anew.
September 11, 2009
Model of an existence made prayer
In a catechesis on July 1, Pope Benedict Later when John was four, and before the declared what is the “first task” and “the terror, he would implore his mother to take true path of sanctification” for a Christian him to Mass each morning. There at Mass, — prayer — and why St. John Vianney is in contrast to kids his age who would genso important not just for priests but for all erally seek to be the center of attention, he of us: “St. John Vianney is undoubtedly a placed his attention on the priest and what model of an existence made prayer.” the priest was doing, to the great edification The Holy Father implies that each of us of adults present. His spirit of prayer would is called to do more than “say” our prayers; grow as he later observed clandestine priests we’re called to become our prayer, by lives up close, either in the secret Masses in area that praise, thank, and petition God and re- barns, or in his own home, where they would quest, receive and share his mercy. The most hide from the revolutionary authorities seekimportant thing in prayer is not what we say, ing to put them to death. but what we are; not what we have on our Once he had reached the age of reason, his lips, but in our hearts. father Matthew decided it was time for him to This is the truth about Christian prayer. start working on the farm. There he learned God the Holy Spirit seeks to transform our how to make his work a prayer. He’d take a way of being so that, as a son or a daugh- small wooden statue of the Blessed Mother ter, we relate to God the Father in Christ the and place her in the hollow of a tree, askSon. St. Augustine taught that qualis ores, ing her to watch over him as he cared for the “how you are when you pray,” is far more sheep or did manual labor harvesting crops. important than quid ores, “what you say When he was alone, he would rejoice that he when you pray.” The subject of prayer is al- could pray out loud. Whether other children ways more important than the object of what accompanied him, he asked them to pray we ask for. The great doctor of the Church with him, often teaching them the prayers becontinued that it is Jesus “who prays for us, forehand. When they wanted to take a nap in in us and by us. He prays for us as our priest, the fields, he would agree, but secretly spend he prays in us as the time prayour master and ing. “I was very he is prayed by happy in my us as our God. father’s house,” Therefore, we he would say as recognize our an adult. “I had voice in him the time to pray and his voice in to God, to medBy Father ourselves.” This itate, to take Roger J. Landry great transforcare of my soul. mation occurs, In the middle St. Paul says, of work in the when “God sent the Spirit of his Son into field, I used to pretend that I was sleeping our hearts crying out, ‘Abba, Father!’” (Gal like the others, but I was praying to God with 4:6). all my heart!” When the farmers in Ars later An “existence made prayer” is God’s told him they didn’t have time to pray, he goal for our life. This is the means by which would reply from personal experience, “One we will be able to carry out St. Paul’s im- cannot say that laborers or workmen do not perative, “Pray always,” (Eph 6:18; 1 Thess have the time to meditate, because they can 5:17), by allowing God to transform our ex- do it so easily while they work.” istence into a constant loving dialogue and Once the situation in France had calmed offering to God. and he was able to enter the seminary, his This is, admittedly, not what many of us life of prayer matured as his dependence on learned in Catholic schools or CCD. The God grew. He made it through seminary only Lord is asking more of us than to recite through prayer. He would pray before the our prayers before we go to bed, or even to tabernacle. He would pray all the decades of make a daily holy hour. He wants us to give the rosary. He would make grueling pilgrimhim permission to help us literally become ages to shrines. Through the crucible of his a prayer. struggles, God helped him acquired a total This is why the example of St. John Vian- confidence in prayer. He also learned from ney, a “model of an existence made prayer,” the example of his mentor, Father Charles is so important and timely. Pope Benedict Balley, how to pray with his body through said in his June letter to priests that the corporal mortification. Curé of Ars taught his parishioners about Once he arrived in Ars, he gave immediprayer “primarily by the witness of his life. ate witness to how prayer was the real susteIt was from his example that they learned nance of his life. The residents immediately to pray.” His great triumph in Ars was that, observed that he did not merely “say” the even though very few of the residents of Mass, but “prayed” it. The night owls saw Ars prayed at home or in church when he that he spent nearly all night praying in arrived, by the time he died, many were ex- church with tears before the tabernacle, begcelling in the life of prayer thanks to his wit- ging for the conversion of his parish. They ness and instruction. Pope Benedict hopes saw him pray his breviary on his knees, and that the Curé of Ars’ example can have a with what love and conviction he glanced similar impact on us. at the tabernacle door. When the crowds of John Vianney learned how to pray at a penitents pressed upon him, he abbreviated very early age from his mother. She talked his morning holy hour, but always took some to him constantly about Jesus, Mary, and his point of meditation with him into the confesguardian angel. When he was a little older, sional to pray about throughout the day. she helped him learn not just the words of His one great desire, he told them, was to the Our Father and Hail Mary but how to be able to lay down the yoke of parish duties say those words with love to God and to the so that he could run to a monastery and have Blessed Mother. He would stay up at night more time to pray. He thought such prayer attentively listening to his mother read Bible would help him “love the good God very stories, learning about how so many heroic much.” He never really got his wish. But befigures said “thy will be done” to God not cause he learned to turn his entire existence just with lips but with lives. into a prayer, he grew in the love of God unMany young children learn how to pray til the love of God came to take him to the grace, but the future saint took it more seri- monastery in heaven. ously than most. One busy day, Marie Vian“Without prayer,” he said often to his paney hastily placed a meal before her infam- rishioners, “life wouldn’t be supportable!” ished son before turning to other tasks. She Prayer supported his life and is meant by returned about 15 minutes later and observed God to sustain ours. That is why Pope Benethat John hadn’t touched the food. When she dict says that prayer is the path to santificaasked him why he hadn’t, the infant put his tion. hand to his forehead and waited for her to Father Landry is pastor of St. Anthony begin the Sign of the Cross. of Padua Parish in New Bedford.
Putting Into the Deep
September 11, 2009
y thoughts of becoming a priest came early in my youth. I used to be an altar boy and I would emulate my parish priests. I wanted to be like them celebrating Mass. My chalice was a converted lamp base, my host a piece of bread cut out of a slice of bread, my communion hosts Necco candy wafers, my altar server my sister, acting before her time. As I grew older and went on to high school, my thoughts of priesthood became a thing of the past. Like other teen-agers, I became interested in enjoying my teen-age years with dancing and dating. As graduation grew near, thoughts about the future became more serious and uncertain. I asked myself, “What am I to do?” My decision was to enlist into the U.S. Navy for three years. I figured that I would find an answer to my quest, and “see the world.” During my enlistment the Korean War broke out and all enlistment was “frozen” for the duration of the war. No one knew how long the war would last. As time went on, however, I began thinking more and more of a religious vocation. I really did not think myself qualified or worthy of becoming a priest — as I had no college education — so my thoughts turned to becoming a religious Brother. I
Vessel of clay, vessel of election
pronounced and definite. wrote to the Holy Cross BrothThe war ended. After due time ers seeking advice. My thoughts and process, I talked with my persisted toward the religious life. parish priest and my bishop and Time went on and so did the war. entered into seminary training. I I began to feel the pressure and responded to my calling saying, stress of discernment. What was I “Here I am Lord; I come to do to do? When would the war end? your will.” By the grace of God, One day while making a chapel I persevered and I followed him visit to the Blessed Sacrament, my eye caught sight of a pamphlet rack containing a booklet by Father Daniel Year For Priests A. Lord entitled, “Why Vocational Reflection do they call me Father?” Father Lord compared his vocation of priesthood to By Father the life of a natural father. Manuel P. Ferreira Through the sacraments of baptism, Eucharist, and confirmation, as with and have continued to do so to the penance, the priest initiates and present day, having served 49 years begets new life to his recipients. in priestly ministry. Although I am He continues to nourish them, retired from active parish ministry, provide for their good and spiriI still actively go to the altar of tual welfare. He helps to educate God, “the God of my joy and my them in a knowledge and love of youth.” God, and aids them to grow and What a wonderful privilege it is develop in their Christian life. As to be a priest, but who more than a “Father,” the priest prepares his the priest himself can appreciate spiritual sons and daughters to give and realize what it entails? How of themselves to the community of unworthy he considers himself and the Church and to society. With the how inadequate. He can only find administration of the anointing of the consolation and strength for so the sick, the priest stands in paterexalted a calling in the truth that nal and fraternal vigil with the sick it is God who has called him. The and the dying of his family. This priest is truly a vessel of divine sebook helped my calling toward the lection, a vessel of clay, a man but priesthood become clearer, more
by God a priest. It is in this divine selection of a man by God to administer the things of God that we find the essence of the priesthood. “Every high priest,” we read in the fifth chapter of the Letter to the Hebrews, “has been taken out of mankind and is appointed to cast for men in their relations with God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins and so he (priest) can sympathize with those who are ignorant or uncertain because he too lives in the limitation of weakness. That is why he has to make sin offerings for himself as well as for the people. No one takes this honor to himself, but each one is called by God as Aaron was.” How well the priest recognizes the dignity of this priestly office and mission and how much more is he amazed by all it embodies as he considers the weak limited humanity to which it is joined. Yes, he is a vessel of divine selection, yet fashioned out of fragile clay. Like Christ he is unique as a priest and victim, in the world, yet not of it. A man with the potential like other men to become a human father, but who promises his life to celibacy. He offers sacrifice to God for men, yet he must offer himself. So it is that the Lord works
through this human instrument made up of flesh and blood. This bundle of emotions, this finite heart and mind inclusive of all its human limitations. As St. Paul said, “We are afflicted in every way, but we are not crushed” (2 Cor.4:7). Yes, Christ uses the humanity of the priest, as he himself did, but he does not dominate it, nor crush it out of existence at ordination. For this reason God has chosen men and not angels to be the dispensers of his mysteries. The priest can sympathize with others because of his very own limitations and weakness. The priest can know the pain of suffering, cry tears of sorrow and joy, experience the gladness of a happy heart, want for love and compassion and also seek consolation and the forgiveness of his sins before God. But ask the priest why he particularly was called, why he was chosen by God to share so intimately in a lasting relationship with Christ, he will not be able to give you an adequate answer. Instead Christ will answer for him, “You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you that you should go forth and bear fruit, and our fruit should remain” (Jn 15:16). Father Ferreira, ordained in 1960, is a retired priest of the Diocese living at the Cardinal Medeiros Residence.
Mitochondrial swapping, dish. They have the right to be followed by IVF, has been uniquely, exclusively and directly successfully performed in the related to the mother and father laboratory using monkey eggs, who bring them into the world. and several disease-free monkeys IVF ignores all these rights of the have already been born. Scienchild. tists speculate that women may The second objection to soon be able to use the method to mitochondrial swapping in avoid passing mitochondrial dis- humans is that it would introorders to their children. Using the technique in humans, however, would raise at least two serious ethical objections. The first objection is that it would encourBy Father Tad age IVF as a means of Pacholczyk producing new human life. Although this way of engendering new human life has become commonplace duce a rupture into parenthood, in our society, it remains an by creating children who inherit inherently unethical approach genetic material from three to human reproduction. IVF not parents. While the mother and only sanctions the manipulation, father would contribute the freezing and destruction of humajority of their child’s DNA man embryos, but also violates from their own egg and sperm, the inner meaning of human a small amount would come procreation by reducing it to an from a second woman donating act of manufacture or production. healthy mitochondria from one To put it simply, our children of her eggs. In other words, the have the right to be procreated, procedure dilutes parenthood not produced. They have the by introducing another parent, right to come into the world in another woman, into the procrethe personal, love-giving marital ation of the child. embrace of their parents, not in In the mitochondrial swapthe cold and impersonal glass ping scheme, it is significant that world of a test tube or petri not just the mitochondria are
“swapped” but actually all the other structures of the cell come from the second woman’s egg as well (except for the nucleus and its chromosomes). In other words, one woman provides the DNA from her own chromosomes, while another woman provides everything else: all the other subcellular machinery of the egg, including the mitochondria. In summary, then, we are not actually ‘repairing’ a defective egg, but constructing a new, alternative, and clearly different egg out of the contributions from two separate women. The final egg produced really belongs to neither woman, so that the technological manipulations introduce a fissure between any child conceived from the engineered egg and both “mothers.” The child becomes “distanced” or “orphaned” from both women involved in the process. In order ethically to achieve a “cure” for mitochondrial diseases in children of the next generation, scientists will hopefully be able one day to correct the mutated gene sequences themselves in the mitochondrial DNA, perhaps while the egg is still inside the ovary, so that once ovulated, the
couple could achieve a conception and pregnancy through normal marital relations. It bears repeating that our sex cells, both sperm and egg, uniquely express and embody our individuality, our identity, and our parental roles. These cells clearly should never be given over or sold to other people to use, in whole or in part, for the purpose of creating children. In particular, the exclusivity that is written into a woman’s body and her reproductive system is violated by any decision of that woman to donate her eggs, or even significant parts of her eggs, to another woman. Mitochondrial swapping technology, then, contrary to popular belief, is not an authentic example of “curing” or “correcting” a disease. It is an instance of setting up a completely alternative system to make a baby, which invariably runs counter to the authentic order of human procreation in marriage. Father Pacholczyk earned his doctorate in neuroscience from Yale and did post-doctoral work at Harvard. He is a priest of the Diocese of Fall River, and serves as the Director of Education at The National Catholic Bioethics Center in Philadelphia. See www.ncbcenter.org
The ethics of ‘correcting’ mitochondrial disease
itochondria are small, elongated structures in a cell that produce energy. These “cellular batteries” contain their own small piece of DNA, separate from the rest of the cell’s DNA found in the nucleus. When defects or mutations occur in this mitochondrial DNA it can result in a number of diseases. In severe cases, children can be born blind, epileptic, unable to crawl and may manifest severe neurological delay and die at an early age. No real therapies exist for most mitochondrial diseases beyond treating the symptoms. Scientists in Oregon, however, recently announced a technique to “swap out” defective mitochondria in an egg cell by using healthy mitochondria from another egg. The technique loosely resembles cloning, since it involves transferring the nucleus from the defective egg into a non-defective egg that has had its own nucleus removed. This newly ‘reconstructed’ egg will then contain mitochondria only from the new egg cell, leaving behind any defective mitochondria from the original cell. The reconstructed egg can then be fertilized with sperm by in-vitro fertilization (IVF) to create an embryo that is free of mitochondrial mutations or defects.
Making Sense Out of Bioethics
ho do they say that I am? Who do you say that I am?” A psychiatrist hearing these words might probably say that Jesus had an identity crisis. Today, psychology is filled with terms like selffulfillment, self-actualization and well-rounded personalities. These words, ideas, and standards are certainly not without value, but they are not the words, ideas and standards of the Gospel. If you want to be a disciple of the Gospel, Jesus makes it perfectly clear whose standards you must choose. Sometimes those choices can bring great embarrassment and suffering. When Giovanni “Francesco” Bernandone heard these words preached in the small church of St. George in Assisi, he went home not to sell but to give away all the fine textiles that belonged to his father. His earthly father disowned him; Francis stripped
September 11, 2009
Being jolted into God’s way of thinking
himself naked before the rotic or a schizophrenic by bishop and said, “Now I can arm-chair psychologists. In truly call God my Father.” the first part of the Gospel, he A psychiatrist would have is called “blessed,” gifted for a field day with this Francis his recognition of Jesus as the of Assisi if he were living Messiah, a recognition given today. Yet no one can explain as a grace by the Father. the holy marks of crucifixion, But within moments, when the very wounds of Jesus, the Jesus speaks of the suffering, holy stigmata. Francis is the only person to be recognized offiHomily of the Week cially by the Church Twenty-Fourth Sunday with this special gift, in Ordinary Time and this Thursday, September 17, is celBy Father ebrated by Franciscans Herbert T. Nichols as the feast of the Holy Stigmata. Francis is so often given abandonment, and rejection accolades for the saint of involved in being the Messipeace or, worse, the saint of ah, Peter stands in Jesus’ path the birds. Francis was indeed and says, “Master, I will not a saint who espoused sufferpermit this.” Master? Peter ing and penance throughout calls Jesus Master, but insists his life — perhaps even that Jesus listen to Peter’s dangerously so by today’s will rather than the Father’s. psychological standards. Jesus replies to this man Going to the Gospel, we who just a few moments ago find Simon Peter, who likehe had called blessed in front wise might be labeled a neuof all his peers. He now calls
him “Satan,” a rebel, who insists upon his own will, his own understanding. However open-minded or perceptive we may be, human judgments are always based on partial knowledge. We can never know all the facts. Only God has that knowledge. We can be wise within the limitations of our being, but humbly we must acknowledge that we do not possess the whole picture. That is the message that Jesus was giving to Simon Peter and to all of us. God alone has perfect understanding, perfect vision, perfect interpretation of events. When we fail to recognize our human finitude and limitations, then we begin to play God and that is the role of Satan. Instead of supporting each other on the journey of life, we become a hindrance to one another by advocating
what is safe, comfortable and predictable. Well-intentioned as we might be, we get in the way of God’s call. Like Peter, we seek to avoid suffering and embarrassment, and like Peter we need to be startled and jolted into God’s way of thinking if we truly want to be his disciples. Above the crucifix we normally see the letters, INRI, an acronym for the Latin expression, “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews.” But it has also been interpreted, “I never regret it.” Jesus didn’t regret it. Francis didn’t regret it. Peter didn’t regret it. And neither will you, if you are sincere in your commitment. No psychiatrist will argue with that. Father Nichols was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Fall River in 1975 and is in residence at St. Anthony of Padua Parish in New Bedford.
Upcoming Daily Readings: Sat. Sept. 12, 1 Tm 1:15-17; Ps 113:1-7; Lk 6:43-49. Sun. Sept. 13, Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Is 50:5-9a; Ps 116:1-6,8-9; Jas 2:14-18; Mk 8:27-35. Mon. Sept. 14, feast of The Exaltation of the Holy Cross, Nm 21:4b-9; Ps 78:1-2,34-38; Phil 2:6-11; Jn 3:13-17. Tues. Sept. 15, 1 Tm 3:1-13; Ps 101:1-3,5-6; Jn 19:25-27 or Lk 2:33-35. Wed. Sept. 16, 1 Tm 3:14-16; Ps 111:1-6; Lk 7:31-35. Thur. Sept. 17, 1 Tm 4:12-16; Ps 111:7-10; Lk 7:36-50. Fri. Sept. 18, 1 Tm 6:2c-12; Ps 49:6-10, 17-20; Lk 8:1-3.
ometimes, the veil slips. It certainly did in a recent New York Times Magazine interview with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. There, in the course of relating her surprise at the Court’s 1980 decision upholding the Hyde Amendment (which banned federal funding for abortion), Justice Ginsburg had the following to say about legal history, social policy, and political surprises: “Frankly, I had thought that at the time Roe was decided, there was concern about population growth and particularly growth in populations that we don’t want to have too many of. So that Roe was going to be then set up for Medicaid funding of abortion.”
Turn that phrase over in have too many of.” your mind — “populations Little surprise, then, that the that we don’t want to have too National Reproductive Rights many of.” Rather odd, wouldn’t you say — odd in itself, and odd in light of such 20th-century horrors as the Holocaust and the Ukrainian terror famine, justified By George Weigel by their perpetrators on precisely such grounds? Then there is Justice Ginsburg’s rationale for Action League (NARAL) had Roe v. Wade and its judicially ‘‘no comment’’ when asked created license to abortion-onabout Justice Ginsburg’s comdemand: Roe was intended to ments. One wonders what the first clear the legal path to federal African-American president of funding of abortions for poor the United States will say when — read “black” — people, who Justice Ginsburg leaves the court. clearly loom large among those That the contemporary pro“populations we don’t want to abortion movement in America is the outgrowth of the early 20th-century eugenics movement — which explicitly sought to limit “populations that we don’t want to have too many of” — is well known to everyone who has bothered to study the history in question. Margaret Sanger, foundress of Planned Parenthood, was a devout eugenicist. Indeed, eugenics was very much the progressive cause back in my grandparents’ day, and enjoyed considerable support among the upper classes. Then came Hitler and his quack racial philosophy and his genocidal “doctors” — and eugenics
The Catholic Difference
understandably got a very bad name. That the eugenic impulse lives on, however, no reasonable person can now doubt, Justice Ginsburg having lifted the veil. That much, as I say, we should have known all along. What continues to baffle me is the acquiescence of America’s African-American leadership in the decimation of America’s black population by Roe v. Wade — for even without that Medicaid funding of abortion to which Ruth Bader Ginsburg once looked forward with evident satisfaction, abortion has taken a tremendous toll in the African-American community since 1973 and is likely the primary reason why AfricanAmericans now constitute our second-largest minority, after Hispanic-Americans. And the black political leadership has, with rare exceptions, supported the abortion license. How does this make any human sense? How does it make any political sense — to support an abortion regime that drastically cuts down your own group’s numbers? Is there any other occasion in history when a political leadership has been complicit in the unnatural (indeed violent) demise of its own
population? I don’t know of one. Just as Senator Edward Kennedy could have been the leader of the Pro-Life movement among U.S. Catholics, so President Barack Obama (representing one of those population groups that some people “don’t want to have too many of”) could have been a Pro-Life leader among AfricanAmericans (who in fact are more Pro-Life than their white fellow-countrymen). Obama, like Kennedy, chose another path. And while his declared intention to reduce the number of abortions is welcome, his administration’s policies seem certain to continue the assault on America’s African-American population — all in the name of “choice” and progress. It is all too strange. And very, very sad. Justice Ginsburg deserves, I suppose, a measure of credit for saying publicly what NARAL and Planned Parenthood and the rest of that gang have long believed. But where is the outrage at this blatant defense of legally-sponsored and federallyfunded eugenics? And especially among African-Americans? Where is the new Frederick Douglas when his people — and the rest of us — need him? George Weigel is Distinguished Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C.
Ariz. I hear that the temperature Monday 7 September 2009 — reached 115 degrees in Phoenix Phoenix, Arizona — Labor Day that week. What attracted more id you happen to notice than 80 bishops and archbishops in a recent edition of The Anchor a full-color photograph of three bishops? “Above the fold” on the front page (as we say in Reflections of a the newspaper business) Parish Priest and wearing a tri-cornered By Father Tim hat was Bishop George Goldrick W. Coleman. The caption explained that the hats identified the three and eight cardinals (including bishops as members of the MasSean Cardinal O’Malley) to the sachusetts delegation attending sweltering southwestern desert in the 127th Supreme Convention August? The answer is the 1.78 of the Knights of Columbus. The million members of the Knights convention was held in Phoenix,
The Ship’s Log
September 11, 2009
of Columbus, all of whom are pledged to stand in solidarity with bishops and priests. Conversely, bishops and priests stand in solidarity with the Knights. Over the past 10 years, the Knights have donated more than $1.3 billion to charity. Just last year, during the worst of the recession, Knights’ charitable giving rose to more than $150 million. But money isn’t everything. While so many people complain about being too busy to get involved, the Knights’ volunteer service increased to almost 69 million hours in the 2008 fraternal year alone.
Broadcasting salt, light and leaven
Now, I’m not suggesting live in the zone of overthat each of us needs to get lapping radio waves for K-Love Christian radio station a soapbox and pick a street corner, nor that we need to and a National Public Radio drop God’s name into every station that both broadcast at sentence possible. However, 91.1 FM. Because of my geojust as it is that around my graphical location, these two house K-Love and NPR share stations from polar opposite the same radio frequency, we ends of the cultural spectrum fade in and out of one another, Catholics living in the United States share with non-Cathwith paradoxically hilarious olics the same constitutional results as I drive around my right to freedom of speech. town. The question is, do we love Yesterday, for example, I was tuned into K-Love and singing along to Michael Card’s upbeat worship song, “You are the Light of the World.” Without warning, a monotone NPR reporter with a By Heidi Bratton clipped British accent interrupted my singing by introducing a new Jesus enough to exercise that author for teen-agers who he right prudently, frequently, said “has become a symbol of and out of love for those rebellion because she does not who have not understood hold back on the violence in Jesus message of salvation? her books and does not apoloMore importantly as Catholic gize for it. ‘Violence is a part of the cauldron of their lives,’” parents, do we realize that our children are listening to our said the reporter quoting the silence and learning how not supposedly rebellious author. Before I could get the author’s important our faith is when we, oh, so politely allow evname in order to avoid her eryone else to broadcast neuwork, Card’s worship song tral or anti-Catholic opinions was back. It was like there 24/7 without interruption? It is was this airwave battle betime to speak up for and about tween hope and despair going our faith in public, not just for on right inside my car radio. the sake of others, but also as Now, I wouldn’t say this if a matter of good Catholic parI weren’t guilty of the charge enting. As we learn to speak myself sometimes, but when up, the Gospels give us three it comes to being a hopeful, helpful images of what we are evangelistic voice of authento be in our world. These imtic faith in the real world of ages are salt, light, and leaven. NPR-style monologues trying Remembering these can help to mollify our standards, we us determine positive ways to Catholics can be such wimps and wallflowers. We’re too po- be authentic voices for God. Salt. Salt is from the earth. lite. In fact, it would seem that Salt enhances flavor. We can we’re more concerned about be salt by empathizing with temporarily offending people the earthy, bland, or yucky than we are about their eternal parts of life, at the same time salvation.
Home Grown Faith
that we also emphasize that despite our human condition here, God truly loves us and the Holy Spirit’s presence here on earth really does enhance our lives and give them “flavor.” Light. Light illuminates. We are light when we shine a verbal spotlight on the positive aspects of something instead of joining in a pity party, and when we highlight love and truth instead of violence and lies. We can let more verbal light in by eliminating the darkness of foul language and crass or racist humor. Leaven. Leaven elevates everything around itself. We are leaven when we greet others with uplifting terms of endearment and encouraging words, and when we offer to pray with and for them. Good, clean humor lightens any conversation. When it comes to becoming more vocal about God’s love, it doesn’t matter if we get interrupted or are only heard in snippets. It’s only natural because we share the same world with non-believers just like K-Love and NPR share the same radio frequency near my house. If, however, we will be salt, light, and leaven in our shared world, I believe non-believers and our own children alike will fiddle with their moral dials, looking more and more often to tune into our frequency, which is in fact God’s frequency broadcasting his love for them 24/7. Heidi is an author, photographer, and full-time mother. She and her husband raise their six children in Falmouth. firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the past decade, that adds up to nearly 626 million volunteer hours (valued at $11 billion.) The bishops were in Phoenix to encourage the members of the largest lay Catholic organization in the world. Even the desert heat couldn’t deter them from their mission. At the Supreme Convention, the Order honored the best of the best out of more than 14,000 councils worldwide. A Minnesota council won the Church Activities Award for restoring a dilapidated church. The Council Activities Award went to a council in Virginia for providing members with support (including business networking and career counseling) during times of hardship, unemployment or catastrophic family health issues. The Community Activities Award went to a council here in Massachusetts — The Richard Cardinal Cushing Council, No. 6267, in Pembroke. This council, working with other councils, businesses, and organizations, sponsored a Prom Night for 75 special needs youth and young adults. The idea of the special-needs prom came from then Grand Knight Kevin McKenna. The concept was to give the young people the opportunity to experience the fun and excitement of a prom and to help teach the community about living with disabilities. The night of the prom, while the young people danced, parents adjourned to another room to, over a meal of pasta, share personal experiences and helpful advice. As a result of the program, the Knights in Pembroke earned the most prestigious Community Service Award that can be presented to any Knights of Columbus Council in the world. The men of St. Nicholas Parish are preparing to apply to Supreme Headquarters in New Haven, Conn., for a council charter. The Knights of Columbus was founded in New Haven by Father Michael J. McGivney in 1882. It is dedicated to the principles of charity, unity, and fraternity. We already have several new
members in different stages of initiation. In order to apply for a charter, we need 30 men. We’re almost there. Initiation into the Order consists of three steps called “degrees,” each marked with solemn ceremony. When a new council is in formation, a team is sent by the State Council to formally conduct the initial meetings and to receive men applying for membership. I was pleasantly surprised to welcome Massachusetts State Deputy Bill Donovan to our very first meeting. At this point, we have now held two ceremonies for first degree membership and one ceremony for second degree membership. Our candidates seeking full membership in the third degree will join with others at a centralized location to complete their initiation into the Order. Then it’s on to the election of our own council officers. Council officers must be Knights in the third level of membership. Although one does have to be a Knight to attend a business meeting, there is really nothing secret about the Order. The ceremonies of first, second, and third degrees are held in “executive session.” Participants are asked not to divulge the particulars simply because that would spoil it for incoming members. Not all Knights carry swords and wear chapeaux adorned with feathers. This is the formal uniform of the fourth degree. The fourth degree is a distinct organization, primarily ceremonial and patriotic. There are other specialized groups under the umbrella of the Knights of Columbus. These include schoolboy councils (Squires), college and university councils, military councils, Eastern Rite councils, Spanishspeaking councils, etc. This is the Year for Priests. I am a priest. This priest gladly accepts all the help he can get. If necessary, I will even wear a tricornered hat. I can’t do feathers, though. I’m allergic. Father Goldrick is pastor of St. Nicholas of Myra Parish in North Dighton.
KNIGHT LIGHTS — Supreme Knight Carl Anderson (center) presents the International Community Service Award to Kevin McKenna for the Pembroke Council’s Special Needs Prom Program. From left: Mass. State Deputy Bill and Annmarie Donovan, Anderson, Hope (with five-week-old Liam) McKenna and Mass. District Deputy Kevin McKenna. (Photo by Dick Guerreiro)
The Anchor PLEASE KEEP OUR STUDENTS IN YOUR PRAYERS FOR A SUCCESSFUL, HAPPY, HEALTHFUL NEW YEAR AS THEY RETURN TO THE CLASSROOM.
September 11, 2009
Helping build a church; a nickle at a time
Special to The Anchor
midity in summer, and wind and cold of winter, WELLFLEET — For the past eight years at the parish volunteers have been meeting faithOur Lady of Lourdes Parish about a dozen men fully since 2001 at the transfer site one to three and women meet each week at 7:30 a.m. at the times each week, depending on seasonal volume, Wellfleet Transfer Station to sort, package and to sort and prepare their shipments. In the touristship refundable bottles and cans for the benefit packed, thirsty weeks of summer the group sorts of the church building fund. and packages as many as 16,000 refundable bevThe idea of turning bottles and cans into cash erage containers a week, yielding an $800 profit was hatched in August 2001 by parishioners for the church building fund. Sandra Szedlak and Eileen Singleton who one Greg Cambi, Cal Anderson and Bob Kelly, day noticed a massive three of the long-term heap of beverage convolunteers, have all actainers piled up, ignored knowledged the work is and seemingly forgotten “humbling at the least at the transfer station. and occasionally dis“It was a sorry mess,” gusting.” Said one, “No Szedlak recalled, deone would do this work scribing a giant circle if it were not for the of snow fencing corralchurch.” But the profling tens of thousands its cannot be denied. In of beverage containers the past eight years the waiting for someone to group has raised more sort and transfer them to than $100,000, all of one of the local redempwhich has been given to tion centers. A mitigatthe pastor, Father John ing factor at the time was Andrews, for the buildthe closing of the tiny ing fund. Our Lady of Lourdes John Talbot, a volChurch, built 90 years unteer who helps coearlier, in downtown ordinate the effort, Wellfleet. has stated the project That was in 2000, would have ended long and then-bishop Sean ago were it not for the O’Malley had set forth combined cooperation plans to build a new, ANCHOR PERSONS OF THE WEEK — ... BUT of the Wellfleet DPW larger church on land the SOMEONE HAS TO DO IT — Parishioners that allows them space diocese owned adjacent from Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Wellfleet for sorting and storage, to Route 6 in Wellfleet. sort through thousands of empty bottles and the people at Parkers The match seemed cans at the town transfer station, preparing Redemption Center, perfect: the need of a to have them hauled to a redemption center. Hyannis, who send out new church and plenty The monies earned from this labor of love is a truck to haul it all of bottles and cans that donated to the parish church building fund. back to the facility for would add to the funds (Photo courtesy of John Talbot) processing, and for the needed for construction. indefatigable tenacity As a partial response to the requisite fund-raising and willingness of a dozen or more parishioners which was to follow, a small army of gritty vol- who show up to do the work week-in, week-out, unteers was formed, all of whom were willing to year after year. get their hands dirty sorting, bagging and deliv“The volunteers are among the hardest workering these five-cent vessels for redemption. ing, nicest and most generous people I have ever The Wellfleet DPW and selectmen had pre- known,” said Talbot. “The group has come to acviously allowed various non-profit groups over cept the old adage that every nickle counts litthe years to perform this function. Boy Scouts, erally, and that is what brings these faithful and Girl Scouts, and others had all taken a crack at determined parish volunteers back each time to it, and had profited, but only for a relatively brief their ‘ministry at the dump.’” period. It became evident no group could susTo nominate a Person of the Week, send an tain the effort. Before long, volunteers dwindled email message to FatherRogerLandry@Anand piles of discarded bottles and cans became chorNews.org. unmanageable. One group after another tried Correction and ultimately failed — until the Our Lady of In last week’s Living Stones, it was reported Lourdes folks came along. that Charles and Joan VanderStaay, parents of Undaunted by flies, yellow jackets, the odor Maureen Lindquist, were deceased. They are of stale beer and the challenges of heat and hu- very much alive.
No one is safe
e afraid. Be very afraid. No one is safe. This sounds like the trailer of a slasher flick, but in fact it’s the mantra of choice in the New England Patriots locker room. With the exodus of Richard Seymour just a week away from the season opener, Coach Bill Belichick has once again sent a crystal-clear message to his charges. No one is safe. Trades, cuts and releases are part of the game. Don’t feel sorry
My View From the Stands By Dave Jolivet for the athletes. They have as much loyalty to their employers as the people who write their astronomical checks have for them. Ty Law, Lawyer Milloy, Willie McGinest, Ellis Hobbs, etc. They’ve all fallen prey to the New England grim reaper. And now Richard Seymour. Actually Richard’s surname had a lot to do with his premature departure. Coming up on a contract year, Richard could See More. Cash that is — or as they call it in football, respect. There was no way the Pats could have afforded to keep
September 11, 2009
him and a couple of other beefy contract issues next season. Everyone wants to See More. It’s not just about the money though. It wouldn’t have surprised me that hadn’t Tedy Bruschi retired last week, that he could have been released. During the preseason, one unknown wide receiver was given the number 80 — that worn for 15 seasons by the great Troy Brown, the Pats’ all-time leading pass receiver. Mike Vrabel, a mainstay in the Pats’ second line of defense was unceremoniously dealt to the Kansas City Chiefs in the offseason. Eight years of giving his heart and soul, and not to mention taking a home town discount to stay with the club — all ancient history now. Football is a business, and there is no better business man than Bill Belichick. He may have a heart beating somewhere in that chest, but it definitely never makes it to his sleeve. Belichick is the perfect football mind. There’s no room for sentimentality on the gridiron. No one is safe. Don’t be surprised if the day comes when Tom Brady will fall in the coach’s cross-hairs.
I don’t know if Bill would pull the trigger or not, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he did. I think he wouldn’t hesitate releasing Bob Kraft given the opportunity. But in all fairness to Coach
Belichick, nearly every other coach in the league has that robot-like approach. And in fairness to Bill, he, too, must be afraid. Be very afraid. No one is safe. He’s one bad season from
meeting the same fate as those with whom he’s cut ties. Football is a tough game where you can be blind-sided at any moment. On and off the field.
September 11, 2009
Filming of biography of Opus Dei founder begins
WASHINGTON (CNS) — Filming has begun in Argentina on a biography of St. Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer, the founder of Opus Dei. The movie, “There Be Dragons,” is expected to be released in the summer or fall of 2010. Directing the film is Roland Joffe, whose past films include “The Mission” and “The Killing Fields.” Joffe, who also wrote the screenplay, said he was not told what to write or how to present either the saint or the group, a personal prelature within the Church, after earlier rejecting an offer to film a script provided by Opus Dei. The film is set at the time of the Spanish Civil War, which tore apart the European nation during the second half of the 1930s. And, likening it to his own creative freedom, Joffe said St. Josemaria “made no attempt to influence the people he worked with in terms of their politics.” The director spoke at a late August press conference in Argentina that was conducted in English, Spanish and Portuguese; U.S. reporters were allowed to listen in. “At that time, that’s pretty heroic. That’s a time when almost all human beings were faced with making extraordinary choices,” he said. Charlie Cox, whose past film credits include “Stardust” and “Casanova,” plays the priest. Wes Bentley, who had parts in “Ghost Rider” and “American Beauty,” plays Manolo, a friend of Josemaria’s who goes in and out of his life. Ukrainian actress Olga Kurylenko, who has acted in “Quantum of Solace,” “Hitman” and “Max Payne,” plays Ildiko, a Hungarian woman who casts her lot with the Republican movement, which falls to the Francisco Franco-led rightist rebels. Other actors in “There Be Dragons” include Dougray Scott, Geraldine Chaplin, Derek Jacobi and Charles Dance. “We found ourselves making a film about love — human love and divine love. About hate — which I guess is human — about betrayal and mistakes,” Joffe said. Further, “I don’t know if there’s anybody
who wants to live his life without meaning. So it’s also a story about people trying to find meaning about their lives, and that’s a powerful kind of story.” Responding to a question about source material for the script, Joffe said, “I researched as much as any writer can. History is not available to us; attempts at history are available to us. As an artist, one takes a difficult step that fiction is a way of understanding the truth. “There were certain liberties I could take if those liberties could take us to the personal issues that people felt,” Joffe continued, saying he was taken with St. Josemaria’s idea that “a way to God is found through everyday life. And that life is also found through the Spanish Civil War. That is still felt by Spaniards very much today.” “I’ve been to many Opus Dei centers, and met many Opus Dei members (in doing research for the movie). And I’ve yet to encounter anything odd-seeming,” said Cox. “I’ve been brought up a Catholic. I’m not a great practicing Christian. I’ve been to church infrequently, but I’ve never stopped going.” Cox added there is “an inner journey I’ve been going on during this film. I don’t know where it will lead. My relationship with the Catholic Church and with God has certainly been profoundly affected for the better throughout this process,” he added. Asked whether he thought St. Josemaria was really a saint, Cox answered, “It’s an impossible question to answer. I have to leave that up to the Catholic Church and not to myself.” When one questioner asked whether he thought “There Be Dragons” was some kind of response to the movie “The Da Vinci Code,” which characterized Opus Dei as a bizarre cult, Joffe replied, “Well, it’d be a very expensive response.” The price tag of “There Be Dragons” is estimated at $30 million. “‘The Da Vinci Code’ stands on its own legs, whatever they may be,” he added. “I think they took a rather cliched view and created a character and said he came from Opus Dei, and that is a bit much. But it’s a fine movie.”
WHAT IS THAT? — A character named #9, voiced by Elijah Wood, is seen in the animated movie “9.” For a brief review of this film, see CNS Movie Capsules below. (CNS photo/Focus Features)
CNS Movie Capsules NEW YORK (CNS) — The following are capsule reviews of movies recently reviewed by the Office for Film & Broadcasting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. “Halloween II” (Dimension) Writer-director Rob Zombie creates a horror film so boring and predictable, even Michael Myers (Tyler Mane) looks embarrassed to be put through his desultory homicidal paces. Deborah Myers (Sheri Moon Zombie, the director’s wife), is Michael’s semi-spooky, cliche-spouting ghost of a mother, and Scout Taylor-Compton reprises her scream-queen role as Michael’s disturbingly foulmouthed sister Laurie, with whom he longs to have a violent, delusional reunion. Strong violent content, including multiple stabbings, a strangling and a fatal stomping, fleeting upper female nudity, pervasive rough and crass language and occasional sexual banter. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is O — morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R — restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian. “9” (Focus/Relativity) Artistically accomplished but intellectually problematic animated fantasy in which the doll-like titular creature (voice of Elijah Wood) leads a band of similar beings (voiced by, among others, Christopher Plummer, Martin Landau, John
C. Reilly and Jennifer Connelly) — each also identified by a number — as they battle giant mechanical monsters amid the ruins of a post-apocalyptic world. Director Shane Acker’s feature debut, an expansion of his 2004 short of the same title, implicitly contrasts a naysaying version of religious faith with enlightening science, a false dichotomy that, despite some eventual modifications, requires mature deliberation by spiritually well-grounded viewers. Complex religious themes, moderate action violence and frequent menace. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is L — limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. “The Final Destination” (New Line/Warner Bros.) Repellent horror sequel in which a young man’s (Bobby
Campo) premonition of impending death saves him, his girlfriend (Shantel VanSanten), two of their pals (Haley Webb and Nick Zano) and a number of strangers from perishing in a speedway accident, but the Grim Reaper is not to be cheated, and the survivors begin to die off in a series of horrifically gruesome misadventures. Director David R. Ellis’ utterly callous fourth installment in the franchise amounts to little more than an exercise in gross-out special effects, with a gratuitous scene of debased casual sex tacked on for bad measure. Conventional and 3D formats. Pervasive gory violence, including mutilation, brief graphic nonmarital sexual activity, a couple of uses of profanity, and some rough and much crude language. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is O — morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R — restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.
Diocese of Fall River TV Mass on WLNE Channel 6 Sunday, September 13 at 11:00 a.m.
Celebrant is Father Philip A. Davignon, pastor of Our Lady of the Assumption Parish in Osterville
September 11, 2009
Wildfires force parishes to balance safety, serving community’s needs LOS ANGELES (CNS) — For Father Richard Krekelberg, pastor of St. Rita Church in Sierra Madre, the Station fire that destroyed more than 50 homes, threatened 12,000 more and led to the death of two firefighters was a painful reminder. A wild conflagration in April 2008 raced across ridges and down canyons to the very last foothill before the cozy town and St. Rita. “Well, this fire has been a real close parallel for me,” he told The Tidings, newspaper of the Los Angeles Archdiocese. “Back then we had to cancel confirmation, although this time we didn’t have to close anything. “You want to be responsible, and yet you want to be a place where your parishioners and others in the community might be able to come for safe haven,” he added. By early September 2, the Station fire — the largest of a half-dozen major fires in Southern California — had burned more than 140,00 acres in the Angeles National Forest. But helped by cooler weather, containment of the fire was 22 percent, with a fire line that stretched more than 30 miles and was manned by nearly 7,000 firefighters from La Crescenta to Acton. The fire had destroyed at least 53 homes and structures. Ministering to deaf Catholic community presents challenges to Church WASHINGTON (CNS) — Patrick Dowling hasn’t lived the life of many other 14-year-olds. He lost his hearing as the result of a bad case of meningitis at a young age and has grown up without any memories of sound. Patrick belongs to a group of about 1,500 deaf people in the Washington area who are Catholic. His mother, Cheri, said their family attends interpreted Masses whenever they can at the Church of the Resurrection in Ellicott City, Md. Patrick also participates in an after-school religion class offered through his school, the Maryland School for the Deaf. Cheri Dowling said the class explains concepts in different ways to help Patrick learn and the instruction “has taken him to the next level as far as faith and understanding.” But Patrick’s story is an anomaly. His parents represent part of the three percent of hearing parents with deaf children who are able to sign. He has access to Religious Education and his parents encourage him to understand and explore his faith. He is able to attend Mass with an interpreter on a fairly regular basis and even was provided with an interpreter when he participated in a first Communion class. For non-hearing children living in less urban areas or deaf adults who have had extremely limited Religious Education, participating in and understanding the Catholic faith is not easy. Polish prelates welcome Putin’s letter seeking better understanding WARSAW, Poland (CNS) — Two Polish archbishops welcomed Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s letter seeking a better understanding between Russians and Poles, published to coincide with September 1 commemorations of the outbreak of World War II. “This is the first such text I’ve ever read from an important politician speaking in his nation’s name,” said Archbishop Henryk Muszynski of Gniezno. “We won the war together, and now it’s time to win the battle of memories together. This is very difficult when, for 70 years, one-sided conceptions have been formed on both sides,” the archbishop said of the letter published August 31 in Poland’s Gazeta Wyborcza daily. Archbishop Jozef Zycinski of Lublin said he, too, was pleased with “many formulations” in Putin’s letter and urged Poles to overcome their “tendency to treat Russians with a feeling of superiority.” He added that he believed closer ties were now possible between Polish and Russian Church leaders, similar to the breakthrough that followed a conciliatory letter sent by Poland’s bishops to their German counterparts in 1965. U.S. priest in Bangladesh helps Garo tribe save musical instruments TANGAIL, Bangladesh (CNS) — The beat of traditional tribal Garo drums is being heard a little more often these days in the Mymensingh Diocese in Bangladesh. The playing of these and other traditional instruments is undergoing a revival thanks to the efforts of American Holy Cross Father Eugene Homrich, the parish priest of St. Paul’s Church in Tangail, reported the Asian church news agency UCA News. Father Homrich, 85, has been working in this forested tribal area of northwestern Bangladesh since 1952 and has established a small museum to preserve traditional tribal musical instruments, some of which were at risk of being lost forever. He also has employed four elderly Garo musicians to teach young people how to play the instruments, UCA News reported. “After having spent over 40 years with the Garo people, I found that ... they have a rich musical heritage. So I’ve tried to be of some help” in this area, said the priest, who is known affectionately as “Achchu (Grandfather) Nokrek.”
Our readers respond
A message of hope Your September 4 editorial on Senator Kennedy’s legacy gives me hope. Thank you for speaking out, with such honesty and charity. Maria Horvath Warren, R.I.
A funeral painful for Catholics It was very painful to be a Catholic the weekend of Senator Kennedy’s funeral. I don’t understand how some in our holy Catholic Church can honor a politician who has the blood of millions of innocent unborn human beings on his hands. How can God bless our Church if we honor and praise those who promote such horrendous evil? May God have mercy on us all. Maryjean Cannata Sandwich Pro-Life principles abandoned There were many tragedies in Edward Kennedy’s life, but the biggest may have been the betrayal of his once-proud, ProLife principles by abandoning innocent human beings. Not unlike the late Congressman Father Robert Drinan, who, before the Supreme Court issued a license to kill to abortionists doctors in 1973, and wrote and spoke eloquently in defense of the right to life of the most helpless members of our human family, the senator defected and joined the pro-abortion camp. It they have held firm in the convictions and voted Pro-Life in Congress, how they might have helped change the history of this once-civilized country by restoring legal right-to-life protection to all human beings, born and unborn. Alas, as Whittier wrote, “Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these: ‘It might have been.’” Richard A. Carey Needham Commentary on Senator Kennedy If there were another religion somewhere that had any credibility or respectability, I’d probably join it, provided I didn’t have to learn another language or sit in weird positions for six hours a day. I thought the Obama-worship at Notre Dame was disgusting enough, but the funeral rites for Senator Kennedy were even worse. Not only did the dear departed not get the excommunication he deserved while he was alive, but he manages to get a spineless sendoff from the Church supine that looks to the world’s fools like approbation
for his despicable actions. I have no idea whether the Senator died in the state of grace or not. I’m no theologian or canon lawyer, but I would think that a “public sinner” of the political variety — who has consistently and blatantly placed his party’s demands before his religion’s — should be required to make “public apology” for absolution to take effect. (The “Hey, I know I’m not perfect” letter read at the funeral would not qualify.) But we’ll never know. In the meantime we can all prepare for “Well, how bad can abortion be if the Vatican sent those blessings to Teddy?” Well, it’s never too late — if the Senator actually made it to heaven (any bets?) he can perform a few Pro-Life miracles to make up for what he didn’t do here on earth (a few disappearing abortuaries would be a start). Bill Black Falmouth Kennedy rites proved a point Your August 28 editorial was terrific, with a well-reasoned “position.” Unfortunately, you are simply wrong in believing that the Church is firm against abortion and in support the conscious clause. The compelling evidence supports a different conclusion. The Kennedy funeral proves once again that the Catholic Church is not really Pro-Life, is not against embryonic stem-cell research or has any problem with homosexuality. The Catholic Church is 100 percent behind the liberal politicians, like Kennedy, and their activism. The extravaganza at the Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Boston was more a canonization v. a funeral. The faithful in the pews notice and we wonder if anyone really believes anymore. Garrett Martin Eastern Shore, Md. Who speaks for us in our Church? As I watched Senator Kennedy’s Funeral on August 29, I was brought to tears and maybe a little despair. I did not grieve so much for the man who had died but for what seemed to be the final capitulation of my Church to the “moral relativism” of this new century. We were warned by Pope Benedict: “We are moving toward a dictatorship of relativism which does not recognize anything as for certain and which has as its highest goal one’s own ego and one’s own desires.” Reflecting that, in a Catholic Church I saw extraordinary homage, accolades and adulation accorded a man to whom abor-
tion, gay “marriage,” embryonic stem-cell research, and euthanasia were causes to be championed. Yet our Church never challenged him. I saw the most anti-life president in history standing in the basilica’s sacred pulpit, eulogizing the man who helped elect him, with the help of 52 percent of Catholics. Even as thousands paid homage to his remains on Friday, the homosexual publication Bay Windows exulted that it was Senator Kennedy whose 11th-hour phone calls changed the vote on the Marriage Amendment Petition. If we have succumbed to the tide, rather than being the rock standing firm, will there next be a “revision” of the Bible to accommodate Jesus’ words to the “new morality”? Who will lead those of us who still adhere to the moral absolutes of Catholicism? Who speaks for us in our Church? Patricia Stebbins East Sandwich Thoughts on Senator Kennedy I am very sorry to hear about the death of Senator Edward M. Kennedy as I am for any person who is deceased, but I was not one of his followers. He was loved by many people in Massachusetts and the country and rightly so, but he was a staunch supporter of abortion, gay marriage, gay civil unions and other issues contrary to the Catholic faith. I hope that God has mercy on his soul for the many good things he did and also I hope somehow he can get a message to Senator Kerry to save his soul. Al Laurino Plymouth Mulling hate crime legislation The front-page opinion piece “Hate Crime” under the byline of Gail Besse makes torturous associations that are hard to imagine, much less follow. Perils to American freedoms are “ignored by mainstream television news” while “Obama judged the motives relating to the arrest of a Harvard professor.” According to Besse, the Cambridge incident is just the beginning of an impending federal power grab that endangers the liberty of pastors and “Joe-Christian-on-the-street.” Sure. And a butterfly’s wing motion in the Amazon rain forest might have been responsible for Katrina. There are legitimate issues related to hate crime legislation. Ms. Besse does little to illuminate them with her far-fetched allegations. Edward P. McDonough Cumberland, R.I.
September 11, 2009
Pope Benedict’s Ground Zero Prayer
On this 8th anniversary of the bombing of the World Trade Center, we turn to God in prayer with the words offered by Pope Benedict XVI when he visited Ground Zero on April 20, 2008.
and all who lost loved ones in this tragedy. Give them strength to continue their lives with courage and hope.
O God of love, compassion, and healing, look on us, people of many different faiths and traditions, who gather today at this site, the scene of incredible violence and pain.
We are mindful as well of those who suffered death, injury, and loss on the same day at the Pentagon and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Our hearts are one with theirs as our prayer embraces their pain and suffering.
We ask you in your goodness to give eternal light and peace to all who died here — the heroic first-responders: our fire fighters, police officers, emergency service workers, and Port Authority personnel, along with all the innocent men and women who were victims of this tragedy simply because their work or service brought them here on September 11, 2001. We ask you, in your compassion to bring healing to those who, because of their presence here that day, suffer from injuries and illness. Heal, too, the pain of still-grieving families
God of peace, bring your peace to our violent world: peace in the hearts of all men and women and peace among the nations of the earth. Turn to your way of love those whose hearts and minds are consumed with hatred.
FATEFUL DAY — Pope Benedict XVI prays at site of the destroyed World Trade Center towers in New York April 20, 2008. He spoke with family members of some of the victims of the 2001 terrorist attacks and with those who were first responders to the disaster. (CNS photo/Nancy Wiechec)
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God of understanding, overwhelmed by the magnitude of this tragedy, we seek your light and guidance as we confront such terrible events. Grant that those whose lives were spared may live so that the lives lost here may not have been lost in vain.
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September 11, 2009
The Anchor Father Caron looks forward to double duty continued from page one
A SUMMER TRADITION — Residents of Whaler’s Cove, an assisted living community in New Bedford, recently enjoyed a cookout at the home of Jeannine and Ken Pacheco of Westport. The Our Lady of Grace parishioners have hosted the yearly event for 25 years.
Westport Catholics host assisted living residents for 25th year WESTPORT — Jeannine and Ken Pacheco, active parishioners of Our Lady of Grace Parish recently hosted a cookout for assisted living residents for the 25th year. Jeannine is an activity director at Whaler’s Cove in New Bedford, and Ken volunteers there, running a men’s sports night, a card-game night, and attending on many of the outings arranged by his wife. “I have been doing this with different nursing homes that I’ve been employed with,” Jeannine told The Anchor. “Residents look forward to it, and more and more attend each year. Staff members get involved too, our food ser-
vice director volunteered to do the cooking this year.” Whaler’s Cove executive director Maureen Costa, a parishioner at Sacred Heart Church in Fall River, and a extraordinary minister of holy Communion there, welcomed the guests to the Pachecos home. Service to the parish and the community is nothing new to the Pachecos. They have been involved with the diocesan Marriage Prep program for 26 years, the past four as coordinators of the New Bedford team. They also spent 10 years involved with prison ministry. Ken has been a Religious Education teacher at Our Lady of Grace for 27 years.
A JOB WELL DONE —Lynette Ouellette, director of the Boston Province of the National Council of Catholic Women, recently presided at her last meeting in Boscawen, N.H. Board members and guests representing the dioceses of N.H., Maine and Fall River attended. As province director, Ouellette attended the NCCW Board Meeting and General Assembly recently in Salt Lake City, and will attend the convention this month in Jacksonville, Fla., along with Fall River representatives Sister of St. Joseph Cluny Eugenia Brady, diocesan moderator; and President Jeanne Alves. Helene Beauregard, from the N.H. Diocese will be installed as the next Boston Province director at the convention.
appointed as pastor at nearby St. Rita’s Parish in Marion more than two years ago. “In reality, when I was sent to St. Rita’s at the time I was told by the bishop that when Father Leonard M. Mullaney retired, I would become pastor of both parishes,” Father Caron said. “Because of that, I’ve really been preparing for over two years.” With Father Mullaney’s retirement taking effect September 9 after serving as pastor for 10 years at St. Anthony’s, Father Caron said the transition should be a smooth one. In fact, he’s already been meeting with members of his new parish and has worked closely with Father Mullaney during the process. “Father Mullaney has been good that way,” Father Caron said. “This summer, since I was officially told, I’ve been meeting with all the parishioners over there trying to iron out all the details. This is the first time I’ve ever moved that I wasn’t being replaced, so I don’t actually have to physically go over there right away. It’s a short commute — it’s five miles door to door. At some point I’ll have to live there, otherwise I’ll be fighting the school buses to get back and forth for Mass in the morning.” While plans are in place for Father Caron to reside at the rectory in Mattapoisett, he said he still wants to maintain a parish office in Marion to serve the people of St. Rita’s. “I don’t know what’s going to happen down the road,” he said. “That’s not my call. But I will probably be meeting at some point with Doug Rodrigues, director of pastoral planning.” While the two parishes already share some ministries — Religious Education for grades seven and up at both parishes is coordinated by Mary Chaplain, for example — Father Caron expects there to be more interaction between
the two as he settles into his new role. “We’ve been collaborating already,” he noted. The idea of having a pastor serve two parishes is not new to the diocese, and Father Caron has been able to get some valuable pointers from fellow priests who have already been serving in that capacity. “I’ve met with Father John J. Perry, because he had two parishes for a while — Immaculate Conception and St. Jacques in Taunton — and I also met with Father Richard L. Chretien, who still has two parishes: Notre Dame and Immaculate Conception in Fall River,” Father Caron said. “We talked about what to expect.” One of the first key decisions that had to be made was when to schedule Masses. After consulting with parishioners from both churches and looking over the Mass attendance numbers, Father Caron said they came up with a viable schedule to offer Masses on Saturday and Sunday at both locations. “I didn’t want to artificially keep the Mass schedules the same because it’s not what the bishop wanted, first of all, and secondly it’s good for everyone to understand we’re not one community, but at the same time, they can’t have the services they have now here in Marion,” Father Caron said. With assistance from Father William G. Campbell, the retired former pastor of St. Rita’s who now resides in West Wareham, Father Caron said they will offer a 5 p.m. Saturday vigil Mass at St. Rita’s along with a Sunday Mass at 11:30 a.m. St. Anthony’s will retain its 4:30 p.m. Saturday vigil Mass and will have two Sunday morning liturgies: one at 8 a.m. and another at 9:30 a.m. Daily Mass will continue to be offered at St. Anthony’s, Monday through Saturday at 8 a.m. “Father Campbell is going
to alternate Saturdays with me, because I want to have a presence in both parishes,” Father Caron said. “I’m grateful we’ll still have something here in Marion, because it’s a beautiful little church. But there won’t be daily Mass in Marion anymore. I haven’t figured out how to bi-locate yet — I’m not Padre Pio. But we’re trying to do what’s best for the parishioners.” Father Caron added that the capacity of both churches was also a factor in determining the new Mass schedule. St. Anthony’s Church can accommodate approximately 450 people, while 160 is the maximum for St. Rita’s. As such, he couldn’t just offer a vigil Mass at one location and not the other as is common practice among other joint parishes in the diocese. “They average more than 200 for the vigil Mass in Mattapoisett and we were getting about 80 in Marion,” he said. “Where are those 200 people going to fit at St. Rita’s?” Having previously served as pastor at St. Mary-Our Lady of the Isle Parish in Nantucket for seven years and at St. Francis Xavier Parish in Acushnet for four years, Father Caron seems well-prepared to take on the challenges of a larger, combined parish ministry. “My plan, first and foremost, is to get to know the people at St. Anthony’s,” Father Caron said. “We’ve had some collaboration already. They’re ready for me and I’m expecting to be warmly welcomed.” Of course, having a larger number of parishioners will require a bit of extra effort. “Just trying to be available to both communities is going to be a difficult thing to try to balance,” he said. “I know there’s work that needs to be done at St. Anthony’s, too. I’ve been working on St. Rita’s for more than two years, so hopefully I’ll be able to get that done over there.”
September 11, 2009
FAITH-BASED FUN — The annual Vacation Bible School was held at St. John the Evangelist Parish in Pocasset this summer. The theme “Son Rock Kid’s Camp,” was carried out in the crafts, Bible studies, games, snacks, and music. Youth Minister Marilyn Lariviere coordinated the program, with director of Religious Coordinator Liz Henry supervising the crafts. Forty-six campers enjoyed their time together with 20 teen-agers directing activities. A closing program was held on the last day for parents and parishioners featuring songs by all the youth. At left, students perform songs in music class led by Liz Laprade. In right photo another group enjoyed a s’mores snack.
IT’S THE PRINCIPAL OF THE THING — Bishop Feehan, Attleboro, and North Attleboro High Schools will kick off their Triple Teaming Hunger campaign for the 26th annual Edward Tedesco Memorial Christmas dinner at the North vs. Feehan football game September 18 at 7 p.m. With the collaboration of the three principals, the high schools have teamed up to raise money to fund the annual dinner which provides more than 250 holiday meals to the needy and shut-ins. Student representatives from each school will be at the entrance to accept donations. From left: High school principals North Attleboro’s Bob Gay, Bishop Feehan’s Bill Runey, and Attleboro’s Jeffrey Newman.
hey came to Jericho. And as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus, sat by the roadside begging. On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.” And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he kept calling out all the more, “Son of David, have pity on me.” Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take courage; get up, he is calling you.” He threw aside his cloak, sprang up, and came to Jesus. Jesus said to him in reply, “What do you want me to do for you?” The blind man replied to him, “Master, I want to see.” Jesus told him, “Go your way; your faith has saved you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed him on the way (Mk 10:46-52). How often do you call on the Lord for pity? And how often
He’s calling you!
have you ignored his answer, his possessions. Then Jesus said to saving grace? If you believe that his disciples, “Amen, I say to Jesus never abandons us, then you, it is easier for a camel to you must also believe that Jesus pass through the eye of a needle answers our pleas. The probthan for one who is rich to enter lem, however, is that the human the kingdom of God” (Mt 19: heart fears the unknown. I know your prayer is answered, but what troubles you is Jesus’ request to follow him. That’s the unknown. Follow him where? Why? The blind By Ozzie Pacheco man had no trouble in following Christ because he believed and trusted in him. Do you believe and trust in 21-24). Jesus? I admit it. It is not easy to be You also know the story of perfect. But we must try. That’s the rich young man who asked all God asks of us — to try to Jesus what he must do to have be perfect and follow his Son, eternal life. Jesus said to him, Jesus. Our worldly possessions “If you wish to be perfect, go, don’t make us perfect. In fact, sell what you have and give they can be obstacles to inherto the poor, and you will have iting eternal life. When you treasure in heaven. Then come, first learned to ride a bike I’m follow me.” When the young sure you fell many times. But man heard this statement, he each time you picked yourself went away sad, for he had many up and tried again. Eventually,
Be Not Afraid
you told your dad to let go, for now you had the confidence to ride on your own. The same is true with your faith. You fall often to sin, but you get up each time and ask forgiveness, and, promise to try to do better. You trust in God to be there for you always. And God is always there. But, sometimes the fear of the unknown still remains — that can be a scary thing. Don’t be afraid and follow Jesus. What he asks you to do is only for good, never to harm you. If the rich young man could have only understood this. So, next time you ask the Lord to hear your plea for mercy or pity, and you hear his voice saying, “Follow me,” read the lyrics to this song, or listen to it: “He’s calling you!,” by Donnie Mcclurkin: He’s calling you, he’s calling you Tell me what are you going to do
Your time has come for a life brand new He is calling you, He is calling .... you! There’s a voice deep inside You hear it and you cannot hide Seems like after all you’ve tried You’re never satisfied You softly heard him call and say Promised that you’d change someday Even if you run away, you still can’t deny Something’s going on and its real Somehow deep inside you can feel Remember when you said before That you needed something more Now it’s time to realize, he’s knocking at your door Things that you used to do Somehow don’t appeal to you Why would you deny that you Don’t want them anymore Listen to your heart and to your soul And don’t be afraid anymore. Ozzie Pacheco is Faith Formation director at Santo Christo Parish, Fall River.
September 11, 2009
Holy Family is example for achieving strong family life, says Bishop Gainer
A GARDEN PARTY — At the recent Family Retreat Day at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish in Seekonk, pastor Father Brian J. Harrington, center, blessed a Prayer Garden created by Eagle Scout candidate John Gregorek. From left: Joseph Mullen, his grandfather; Gregorek; Father Harrington; Christine Gregorek, his mother; and Charlene Mullen, his grandmother.
Seekonk parish hosts 120 at a Family Retreat Day
SEEKONK — It was themed “Summer Vacation for the Soul,” in the Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish bulletin and website, a free of a charge retreat open to all ages and those in all walks of life. The inspiration of Father Thomas E. Costa Jr., parochial vicar at the parish, the mid-August event, planned with the help of the parish retreat team, found a cross-section of married or engaged couples, singles, divorced, widowed, mothers and children, brothers and sisters, gathered for the all-day event that logged in many families of three, four and five. Several organizations and speakers contributed to the success of the retreat. The Knights of Columbus provided coffee and doughnuts during registration and lunch in the midday break. Parish teen-agers led activities for the younger children. Jean Kusiak, director of music at the parish, led the congregation in song. Allison Gingras, a mother of two, and soon to-be adopted mother of an abandoned Chinese girl, gave witness to her faith life and urged the assembly: “Don’t be afraid to live our faith. You never know who you can be an example to.” Deacon Richard Lemay, who
ministers at the parish, spoke of how he found his vocation, offered seven secrets to being a good steward, and urged all “to act in love, appreciation and adoration of God.” Seminarian Daniel Nunes noted, “when we know in our hearts we are answering God’s call, we can be assured of doing the will of the Father.” Christine Gregorek, director of Religious Education, shared her insights on Jesus, Mary and Joseph as the perfect model family; and how they nurtured Jesus in the home. Father Brian J. Harrington, pastor of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, led the time for personal reflection in the Adoration Chapel for adoration and recitation of the rosary. Following an outside procession to the newly-designed Way of the Cross, he blessed the garden and the families gathered there. Father Costa closed the retreat day with a reflection on making peace in our families. He encouraged everyone to be at peace with God by receiving the sacrament of reconciliation before month’s end. Each family was given an icon of the Holy Family donated by the Diocesan Family Life Center, a Catholic House Blessing prayer, and a container of holy water with which to bless their homes.
GOOD FOOD AND FRIENDS — Children, young and old, enjoyed the hospitality and food provided by the Knights of Columbus at the recent Family Retreat Day at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish in Seekonk.
LEXINGTON, Ky. (CNS) — has been a rejection of this order by the U.S. bishops. He said the The Holy Family is the ultimate and the results are the disintegra- initiative emphasizes that marexample for today’s families in tion and even collapse of family riage — contrary to the opinion of popular culture — is not just how to live according to God’s life today, the bishop said. “We have moved from God’s a human construct that can be plan for humankind and achieve a fruitful and harmonious fam- order and hierarchy to a family defined however people want. Misunderstandings in today’s ily life, a Catholic bishop told democracy — the rule of the culture about the truth of marparticipants at the National Mar- child — loving by allowing,” he riage and its importance are riage Conference in Lexington. said. definitely affecting people, esAnother problem today is “The Holy Family will not pecially children, he said. fail to help all families in ful- that some fathers abdicate their Allen referenced a July 13 filling their day-to-day duties,” role in the home, and too often Time magazine article titled said Bishop Ronald W. Gainer the mother doesn’t marry the fa“Unfaithfully Yours” by Caitlin ther, which causes “a revolution of Lexington. He was one of a number of in the kingdom,” and anarchy Flanagan. In the article, Flanaspeakers at the conference held results, he said. Another threat gan stated, “On every single in early August at Lexington to families is “false hierarchies,” significant outcome related to Catholic High School. It was he said, giving abortion as an short-term well-being and longterm success, children co-sponsored by the Lexington Diocese ishop Gainer urged Catholic fami- from intact, two-parent families outperform and Familia, the families to be a model for others and “a those from single-parly life apostolate of the leaven” to change society. “The family is ent households.” Legionaries of Christ. He pointed out Bishop Gainer the most fundamental unit of society,” he how Flanagan’s arpointed out that today, said, and “a sign of God’s life-giving love ticle supported a statein this media age, famfor all in Jesus Christ.” ment Pope John Paul ily life is often seen as II made in his 1981 it is portrayed on teleapostolic exhortation, vision situation com“Familiaris Consortio,” on the edies, and though these fami- example because the mother’s role of the Christian family. The lies are good for a laugh, they hierarchy becomes the hierarpope said the future of humanare rarely good role models for chy of power, not love. ity passes by way of the family. “It becomes the powerful actfamilies in real life. Allen quoted another point the “Parents are often depicted as ing against the powerless,” he pope made: “It must be emphaclueless, and rarely involved in said. Bishop Gainer urged Catho- sized once more that the pastowhat is really going on in their lic families to be a model for ral intervention of the Church children’s lives,” he said. “People often romanticize the others and “a leaven” to change in support of the family is a matter of urgency.” life of the Holy Family, but such society. Allen also said the phrase “The family is the most fundaa view is not accurate,” he said. “troubled marriage” is a misnoHe suggested his listeners mental unit of society,” he said, mer, noting that “all marriages look at Scripture, particularly and “a sign of God’s life-giving are troubled marriages and need the infancy narratives in the love for all in Jesus Christ.” support.” Another speaker urged parGospels of St. Luke and St. In another talk, Father Steve ticipants to promote a “Catholic Matthew. Roberts, vocations director for “These stories tell us what vision of marriage.” the Lexington Diocese, stressed Mike Allen, director of famit takes to create a harmonious the importance of Catholics prefamily life under the order of ily life ministries for the Diosenting the “good news” of the what God desires for marriage cese of Lexington, stressed that Gospel to a world in need. and family life,” Bishop Gainer Catholics should support and He said those who do this said. “We don’t get much info, uphold the sacrament of marwork “must be careful and have but we get enough. We see par- riage and not view it as “just a the proper attitude,” not presentents who are selfless and giving, little issue.” In his address, Allen men- ing Church teaching as a list of who set aside their own plans and comfort for each other and tioned the national pastoral ini- prohibitions but as “a positive their child. This model is es- tiative on marriage developed option.” sential for marriage and family life.” The fact that Jesus was born into a human family “sanctified the family,” he said. FALMOUTH — Father Craig at several Cape parishes but he Using the analogy of a kingA. Pregana, pastor of St. Rose of was unable to travel due to the dom as an illustration, Bishop Lima Parish in Guaimaca, will political instability. He is now Gainer talked about proper famcelebrate a special Mass Septem- home for a brief vacation. ily structure. He said each in his ber 17 at 7 p.m. at St. Thomas Jose Escoto and Luis Hernanor her own right is a “monarch” Chapel in Falmouth. dez have traveled to Fall River with specific, divinely ordained This Mass will be offered for with Father Pregana. They will roles. St. Joseph, like a benevopeace and the end of political also be present to answer queslent king, is the father who prounrest in Honduras. Following tions. tects and cares for his family, he St. Thomas Chapel is located said. In the role of queen, Mary Mass, Father Pregana will briefly discuss the current situation and a block from the Island Queen is nurturing to her child, her the future of volunteer groups to Ferry at Falmouth Harbor, at 30 “subject,” he said, adding that the mission. Deacon’s Avenue. For further the child’s role is to be obedient Earlier this summer, Father information call Janet Kirsch at and learn from his parents. Pregana was scheduled to speak 774-413-9378. But in modern families, there
Father Pregana to celebrate special Mass for peace in Honduras
September 11, 2009
Catholic educators upbeat
Sen. Kennedy allegedly helped kill Mass. marriage amendment
ployment is the important goal,” Milot asserted. “And because for us in Catholic education it is all about accountability, we’ve made great strides in our testing methods that began in 2005, and that will be furthered this year,” he told The Anchor in an interview last week, along with Dr. Donna Boyle, assistant superintendent for curriculum. “We have an internal testing program that measures achievement in mastering the Massachusetts State Standards in all our schools, grades K through eight,” reported Boyle. “Our curriculum in the Catholic schools is mission driven, and it is perfectly aligned with the state system in all academic subjects grades pre-kindergarten through 12,” Boyle said. The first move was to bring Religious Education to meet the standards set forth by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops on the high school level. By 2005 the religion curriculum update was tested to grade eight, and this year on the high school level. This past year, tests were administered in religion, mathematics and social studies. Last year, the students took their mathematics and religion examinations electronically. In all schools an “authentic assessment” was made in the area of social studies.
have accomplished for the people of Massachusetts is tremendous,” Solomon wrote. “There’s no doubt that he was probably the deciding factor for some of the legislators,” said Kris Mineau, president of the Massachusetts Family Institute and spokesperson for VoteOnMarriage.org, the campaign behind the amendment. Mineau said he had not known of Kennedy’s direct involvement in the defeat of the amendment until the Bay Windows story. “I was shocked but not surprised,” he said, adding that this latest revelation is just further proof that Kennedy had a “horrible track record” on family issues like the definition of marriage and the sanctity of life. A cartoon depicting Kennedy as a “hero for LGBT rights” accompanied the Bay Windows article. It noted that he opposed the federal Defense of Marriage Act and the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. Mineau said that at the time the marriage amendment was defeated, it was common knowledge that Speaker of the U.S. House Nancy Pelosi and then-chairman of the Democratic National Committee Howard Dean used their political clout to influence Massachusetts legislators. On the local level, those trying to prevent the voters from having their say noted that they were helped by the leadership of the
Senate and House as well as Gov. Deval Patrick. As governor-elect, Patrick encouraged legislators to block the vote — a move that had already been ruled unconstitutional by the state’s Supreme Judicial Court. In the end, opponents of the amendment delayed the vote until enough legislators were pressured into switching their position. “Grand political arm twisting won the day,” Mineau said. Bea Martins, associate field director of Catholic Citizenship in the Diocese of Fall River, said she is concerned that national politicians were able to convince local legislators to vote against their consciences. “To me, it shows me how fragile our democracy is,” she said, adding that it is a “travesty” that Massachusetts voters never had the opportunity to express their views on marriage. The effort to define marriage as the union between one man and one woman in the Commonwealth’s constitution began in the Legislature. After several failed attempts, traditional marriage supporters began a citizens’ initiative petition in 2005. Signature gatherers collected more than 170,000 signatures — the most in state history. From there, the proposed amendment needed the approval of 25 percent of the Legislature meeting in joint constitutional convention in two sessions in order to appear on the
ballot. Despite repeated delays as legislators recessed the constitutional convention, the amendment passed on January 2, the final day of the 2006 session, receiving 62 votes. During the second session, Massachusetts legislators recessed without a vote on May 9, 2007 and scheduled the next convention for June 14. On that day, state legislators voted 151 to 45 in opposition, falling just five votes shy of the 50 votes needed to move the amendment to the ballot box. “For this number of votes to change, there had to be something extraordinary going on,” Kris Mineau told reporters at the time. He went on to say that there had been allegations of bribery, political rewards and patronage job offers. He added that legislators were not listening to their constituents, noting that in polls 75 percent of Massachusetts voters said they wanted the opportunity to vote on marriage. Victor Pap, executive director of Boston-based Catholic Citizenship, recently told The Anchor that the people of Massachusetts still want to vote on what he called “one of the premier social issues of our time.” Catholic Citizenship is a nonpartisan grassroots organization, which promotes public policy education and participation of Catholic laity in politics. “I am confident that the issue isn’t going away anytime soon,” Pap said.
By Catholic News Service
by ourselves, but the truth, which is a person (Christ), finds us,” he said. The movie, called “St. Augustine,” was directed by the awardwinning Canadian director Christian Duguay, and was co-produced by Italian, German and Polish television companies. Promotional materials said the miniseries was one of a number of made-for-television movies being produced, which were also to focus on Roman Emperor Nero, St. Peter and Ben Hur. The pope said St. Augustine’s life seemed to end tragically be-
cause the city of Hippo, “the world for which and in which he lived, ends and is destroyed.” “But as it has been shown here, his message has remained and, even as the world changes, that message lives on because it is based on truth and guides charity, which is our common destiny,” he said. The pope has often said his own thinking has been greatly inspired by the fourth-century theologian. When he was a young priest in 1953, the pope wrote his doctoral thesis on St. Augustine’s teachings, and his encyclical, “Deus Caritas Est” (“God Is Love”), owes much to the thought of this saint. Born in North Africa, St. Augustine for many years ignored the counsel of his Christian mother and led a hedonistic lifestyle before converting and being baptized in Milan, Italy, at the age of 33. St. Augustine’s spiritual awakening was not an overnight event but a continual process. The saint’s eyes were opened, the pope once said, by an awareness of God’s love, which is “the heart of the Gospel, the central nucleus of Christianity.”
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“It means that a typical final exam was replaced with a variety of testing using projects, performances and hands-on problems and situations in order to more completely test the students’ knowledge,” Milot explained. Boyle said committees have been formed in every subject, and input from principals and teachers is ongoing. “Of course at all times measuring the students in all subjects was done through the lens of their Catholic faith,” Boyle noted. Ongoing testing will point up what adjustments to the various curricula are needed and steps will be taken to improve any gaps in what is being taught, and set updated requirements for students at the various grade levels. “Our ultimate goal is that from grades K through 12 we have every student being prepared for eventual studies on the college level when the time comes for that to begin,” said Milot. He said that in the interim academic years it will “also ensure every student being able to successfully meet the goals set for them on what they have been taught.” Apparently that is working well. “I’m confident in being able to report that 98 percent of our students graduating from Catholic schools go on to attend college … some going to a two-year college as well as some to a fouryear college,” Milot stated.
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Pope praises St. Augustine film as an authentic slice of life
CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy — Pope Benedict XVI praised a made-for-television movie dedicated to St. Augustine, saying the two-part miniseries “represents every aspect of the human life experience with all of its problems, sorrows and failures.” Furthermore, the movie shows how “in the end truth is stronger than any obstacle,” he said recently after viewing a shortened version of the more than three-hour-long film. “This is the great hope that it ends up with: We cannot find truth
September 11, 2009
Around the Diocese 9/12
All members of the Fall River Diocesan Council of Catholic Women are requested to attend the TV Mass September 12 in the Bishop Stang High School Chapel, Slocum Road, North Dartmouth, at 10 a.m. Father Philip A. Davignon, pastor of Our Lady of the Assumption Parish, Osterville, will celebrate. The Mass will mark the opening season of 2009-2010 for the council.
A new support group for separated and divorced Catholics will be held at Christ the King Parish Center, The Commons, Mashpee, on September 13 from 12:30 to 2 p.m. All are welcome and no registration is required. For more information, email email@example.com or call 508-999-6420.
Public adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in observance of the feast of Our Lady of Sorrows will take place September 15 in the chapel of the Father Peyton Center, 518 Washington Street, Easton. Exposition and rosary prayer will begin at 9 a.m., followed by adoration until 11:45 a.m., with Mass at noon. For more information call 508-238-4095.
A Mass followed by a healing service with Gerald Murphy will take place at Our Lady of the Cape Church, 468 Stoney Brook Road, Brewster, September 16 at 7 p.m.
A free concert by singer/song-writer Anne DiSanto will take place at Holy Cross Church, 225 Purchase Street, South Easton, September 18 at 7:30 p.m. A free-will offering will benefit the parish Outreach Ministries.
Benedictine Sister Paula Hagen, founder of the MOMS Ministry, will lead a mini retreat September 19 beginning at 8 a.m. at St. Pius X Parish Life Center, 5 Barbara Street, South Yarmouth. All women, spiritual friends and companions are welcome to join Sister Hagen for a morning of prayer and reflection. For more information call Tricia Mullaney at 508-362-1583 or email Beth Davis at beth_gdb@comcast. net.
Our Lady of Purgatory Church, 11 Franklin Street, New Bedford, will host an annual Homecoming Maharajan and Heritage Festival September 20 beginning with a Maronite Catholic Mass at 11 a.m. at the Horseneck Holy Ghost Grounds, Dartmouth. For tickets or more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 617-803-4087.
Father Joel Grissom, SM, will give a day of recollection at Cathedral Camp, 167 Middleboro Road, East Freetown, on September 20, sponsored by the Legion of Mary of the Fall River Diocese. The day retreat is open to men and women, members and non-members alike. For more information call 508-995-2354. Eucharistic Adoration in the Diocese
ACUSHNET — Eucharistic adoration takes place at St. Francis Xavier Parish on Mondays 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Fridays 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Saturdays 8 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. Mondays end with Evening Prayer and Benediction at 6:30 p.m.; Saturdays end with Benediction at 2:45 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 of the month, 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 TAUNTON — Eucharistic adoration takes place First Fridays at Holy Family Church, 370 Middleboro Avenue, following the 8:30 a.m. Mass until Benediction at 8 p.m. FAIRHAVEN — St. Mary’s Church, Main St., has a First Friday Mass each month at 7 p.m., followed by a Holy Hour with eucharistic adoration. Refreshments follow. 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. 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. OSTERVILLE — Eucharistic adoration takes place at Our Lady of the Assumption Church, 76 Wianno Avenue on First Fridays following the 8 a.m. Mass until Benediction at 5 p.m. The Divine Mercy Chaplet is prayed at 4:45 p.m.; on the third Friday of the month from 1 p.m. to Benediction at 5 p.m.; and for the Year For Priests, the second Thursday of the month from 1 p.m. to Benediction at 5 p.m. TAUNTON — Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament takes place every First Friday at Annunciation of the Lord Church, 31 First Street, immediately following the 8 a.m. Mass and continues throughout the day. Confessions are heard from 5:15 to 6:15 p.m., concluding with recitation of the rosary and Benediction at 6:30 p.m. 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. WEST HARWICH — Our Lady of Life Perpetual Adoration Chapel at Holy Trinity Parish, 246 Main Street, holds perpetual eucharistic adoration. 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.
Springfield diocese announces parish closings, reconfigurations
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (CNS) — The Springfield Diocese announced parish reconfigurations and 19 parish closings during recent weekend Masses. Diocesan officials held a press briefing in Springfield, detailing the changes. Springfield Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell met with the pastor of each parish that will be affected and wrote a letter for each parish to be read at the Masses. “There’s going to be hurt, and I wish there weren’t,” the bishop told reporters. “But, at the same time, we are a pilgrim people. And church is meant to be a pilgrim people. Church is meant to be people on the move.” Msgr. John J. Bonzagni, director of the diocese’s Pastoral Planning Office, said the changes are needed because of a change in demographics, a decline in the number of clergy and financial pressures. “What we have tried to do is now get the diocese on a stable footing, remove the anxiety of
In Your Prayers Please pray for these priests during the coming weeks Sept. 14 Rev. Stanislaus J. Ryczek, USA Retired Chaplain, Former Pastor, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, New Bedford, 1982, Sept. 15 Rev. Henry J. Mussely, Pastor, St. Jean Baptiste, Fall River, 1934 Rev. Brendan McNally, S.J., Holy Cross College, Worcester, 1958 Rev. John J. Casey, Pastor, Immaculate Conception, North Easton, 1969 Sept. 16 Rt. Rev. Msgr. Jean A. Prevost, P.A., P.R., Pastor, Notre Dame de Lourdes, Fall River, 1925 Sept. 17 Rev. Thomas F. McNulty, Pastor, St. Kilian, New Bedford, 1954 Cardinal Humberto Sousa Medeiros, Archbishop of Boston, 1970-83, Pastor of St. Michael, Fall River 1960 -1966, 1983 Rev. Felix Lesnek, SS.CC., Former Associate Pastor, St. Joseph, Fairhaven, 1991 Sept. 18 Rev. Luke Golla, SS.CC., Seminary of Sacred Heart, Wareham, 1945 Rt. Rev. Msgr. Edmund J. Ward, Retired Pastor, St. Patrick, Fall River, 1964 Sept. 19 Rev. Henry E.S. Henniss, Pastor, St. Mary, New Bedford, 1859 Msgr. Arthur W. Tansey, Retired Pastor, Immaculate Conception, Fall River, 1985 Sept. 20 Rev. Simon A. O’Rourke, USN Chaplain, 1918 Rev. Omer Valois, Retired Pastor, Sacred Heart, New Bedford, 1958
whether this building’s going to be used, should we repair the roof?” he said. “Now let’s continue to build and continue to grow. So, what we hope we’re doing is really empowering for the growth of the church.” Announcements of the closings at weekend Masses drew reactions of sadness and begrudging acceptance from parishioners in the diocese. “You find a church and then it’s ripped out from under you,” said Sharon Heston, a parishioner of Sacred Heart Parish in Northampton after the 6:45 a.m. Mass August 30, during which the pastor read a letter from the bishop stating that Sacred Heart Parish would close. John Steidler, another Sacred Heart parishioner, told The Catholic Observer, newspaper of the Springfield Diocese, that he thinks the decision to close the parish “is really going to hurt.” After the 9 a.m. Mass August 30 at Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish in Holyoke, parishioner Bill Colangelo said he was thrilled his parish was not slated to close immediately. The parish is to link with St. Jerome Parish before the end of this year and the two parishes are to be merged in two years. Remarking on the changes across the diocese, Colangelo said: “Nothing ever stays the same. I think the most important thing is that we have churches to go to. It would be nice if they all could stay open, but they can’t. I think we all have to face financial changes in a realistic way. We all have to move forward.” Most of the changes are scheduled to take place before the end of the year. However, reconfigurations for some communities will take place two years from now.
The changes were recommended by the 12-member Pastoral Planning Committee following detailed analysis and input from parishioners of every parish and mission in the diocese. Members of the committee began their work more than three years ago. Committee members were charged by Bishop McDonnell with formulating a way to provide “every Catholic in western Massachusetts fair and equitable access to the sacraments.” According to Msgr. Bonzagni, if the diocese had not begun this pastoral planning effort and implemented changes to area parishes, there would have been “a slow trickle of parish by parish failing.” He noted that the recommendations were made following a great deal of input from more than 1,000 parishioners from across the diocese. Listening sessions were held in every area of the diocese over a nearly two-year period. In most cases where a merger is to take place, the Pastoral Planning Committee recommended that a new name be selected for the merged parish, something that has already been done in many of the recent mergers across the diocese. Three prior pastoral planning efforts had been started in the diocese since 1980, but were not completed. Bishop McDonnell said he believes that a combined parish community strengthens the faith of everyone involved. “There’s a large community worshipping together and that large community provides vitality and that large community provides possibility for new ministries and new outreach and new ways of reaching people,” he said. “We have to focus on building up Church, not church buildings.”
ROLLING UP THEIR SOX FOR HUNGER — Boston Red Sox Dustin Pedroia, Jonathan Papelbon, Josh Beckett, and Mike Lowell pose in the new Hit for Hunger T-shirts at Fenway Park recently. The shirts, which will be sold online and in select Newbury Comics stores will raise money for the Cor Unum Meal Center run by St. Patrick Parish in Lawrence. (Pilot photo by Gregory L. Tracy)
Red Sox take a swing at hunger in Lawrence
By Donis Tracy Pilot Correspondent
FENWAY PARK — Fighting hunger has a new name, or names, to be exact: Lowell, Pedroia, Ortiz, Papelbon and Beckett. Red Sox third baseman Mike Lowell, second baseman Dustin Pedroia, pitchers Jonathan Papelbon and Josh Beckett and designated hitter David Ortiz have joined forces in order to combat hunger at the Cor Unum Meal Center run by St. Patrick Parish in Lawrence. At a recent media availability in Fenway Park to launch the “Hit for Hunger” T-shirt campaign, several of the players showed off the new shirts, which are sold for $20, online at www.labelsareforjars.org and at select Newbury Comics retail stores. “We hope that these shirts not only help to raise awareness of the problem of hunger, but also raise money in order to help the Cor Unum Meal Center,” said Lowell. According to Lowell, he first became aware of the poverty in Lawrence through fellow Sox player Sean Casey. A long-time friend of Father Paul O’Brien who is the pastor of St. Patrick’s and the founder of the meal center, Casey has been a supporter of Cor Unum since its early days. He played for the Red Sox during the 2008 season. “Casey opened the door for us,” Lowell said. “Once you see the problem, we are only too happy to be able to help.” The blue and red shirts are available with the name and number of the five players and feature the Hit for Hunger and Labels Are For Jars logos. According to Father O’Brien, all of the profits from the “Hit for Hunger” shirts will go to feed the hungry at Cor Unum. The Cor Unum Meal Center is a not-for-profit facility that provides free meals every day of the year to the hungry in Lawrence. Since the meal center’s opening three years ago, more than 400,000 meals have been served. “We are very happy that some of the highest profiles in baseball have joined us in fighting hunger,” said Father O’Brien. In June, Lowell and his wife Bertha presented Father O’Brien with a $25,000 donation to Cor Unum from the Mike Lowell Foundation before a Red Sox game at Fenway Park and Bertha was one of several Red Sox wives who spent a day volunteering at Cor Unum. The Hit for Hunger shirts are the latest addition to the Labels Are For Jars line. Other items
include the Labels Skull Cap: a black wool cap with the label “hungry” on the front, and the original Labels Are For Jars shirt: a black T-shirt with commonly used labels such as “addict” or “slacker” written on the front. Each of the shirts is packaged in clear jars with coin slots cut into the top. Buyers are encouraged to collect money in the jars and then send their donations into Labels Are For Jars. According to Father O’Brien, more than $2 million has been raised for the Cor Unum Meal Center through Labels Are For Jars.
September 11, 2009