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Newspaper of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis

The Catholic Spirit December 16, 2010

1911 - 2011 We’re turning 100 And we’re kicking off a year of celebration with a special event Jan. 6 in Minneapolis — see page 13A. Also watch for our next issue, Jan. 7, for more about our centennial.

News with a Catholic heart




Blessings View a slide show at THECATHOLICSPIRIT.COM of creches from around the world on display at the Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis.



A project at Risen Christ School in Minneapolis brings Christmas cheer to students and their families. Page 3A.


What was the Star of Bethlehem? What theological significance does it have? Page 7A.

Also inside ■ Read Archbishop Nienstedt’s Christmas message. Page 2A. ■ View this year’s Christmas poster contest winners. Page 11A. ■ What do local nonprofits want for Christmas? B-section.


Despite blizzard, some churches still hold Mass The Catholic Spirit Cancel Mass? “Never!” was the reply from New Brighton. “No. Absolutely not!” came the Snow not obstacle response from St. Paul Park. for Our Lady of But both in the Guadalupe Twin Cities and in the outlying councelebration — Page 9A ties of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, dozens of parishes were forced to cancel

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weekend liturgies because of the blizzard of Dec. 10-11 that downed the roof of the Metrodome. Impassable roads, sub-zero temperatures

and the threat of parishioners getting stuck in the 15-to-20-inch snowfall were the main reasons parishes canceled liturgies and activities both Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 11-12. As uneven as the snowfall amounts were across the 12-county archdiocese, so was the decision to hold or cancel Masses An e-mail query of parishes Monday by The Catholic Spirit drew a mix of responses and a handful of good stories, including one about a deacon and his wife snowshoeing to church to prepare it for a wedding! Here’s a sampling of responses to our PLEASE TURN TO TO CANCEL ON PAGE 12A

WARNING: Human traffickers may be lurking near you. Girl’s story sheds light on epidemic — Page 5A



Revealing the face of God

That They May All Be One Archbishop John C. Nienstedt

As Jesus reveals the face of God to us, we in turn reveal Jesus to others by the witness of our lives

In the context of the Last Supper in the 14th chapter of St. John’s Gospel, St. Philip says to Jesus: “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” This was, at first glance, a rather reasonable request. As human beings, we often contend that “seeing is believing.” We want proof, concrete proof, so as to verify the truth of the matter at hand. Yet, Jesus’ response to Philip points to a kind of knowing, a verifiability if you will, on a completely different level: “Philip, after I have been with you all this time, you still do not know me? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father . . . . Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?” (John 14:9-10). With these words, Jesus challenges Philip to a life of faith. Faith is a way of seeing and of knowing that is based on the reality of a personal relationship — it is proven by the experience of knowing and loving someone so well that no further proof is required. Ask children if their parents love them and they, in all likelihood, will say “yes.” But ask them to prove it and they would be perplexed in responding, “Well, I just know that they do.”

The Catholic Spirit The Catholic Spirit’s mission is to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. It seeks to inform, educate, evangelize and foster a spirit of community within the Catholic Church by disseminating news in a professional manner and serving as a forum for discussion of contemporary issues. Vol. 15 — No. 26

MOST REVEREND JOHN C. NIENSTEDT Publisher BOB ZYSKOWSKI Associate publisher JOE TOWALSKI Editor Materials credited to CNS copyrighted by Catholic News Service. All other materials copyrighted by Catholic Spirit Publishing Company.


“No other human being knew Jesus as well as Mary did. When we get close to her, we become, by necessity, close to him.


Word became flesh How do we really know God exists? After all, we cannot see or touch him. God, by very definition, is a being who lies beyond our comprehension or even our imagination. But, like Philip, we learn that God can be known in Jesus and in his Body, the Church. Therefore, as Pope Benedict XVI states so frequently, Jesus reveals the face of God to us. This, then, is the meaning of the

Incarnation: “That the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. And we saw his glory, the glory of an only Son coming from the Father, filled with enduring love” (John 1:14). Last month during his apostolic visit to Spain, our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, referred to the fact that in 19th-century Europe, the conviction grew throughout society that somehow God is PLEASE TURN TO WE ON PAGE 9A

Hearing Tests Set for Senior Citizens Announcement — Free electronic hearing tests will be given all next week Monday thru Friday from 9 am to 4 pm. The tests have been arranged for anyone who suspects they are not hearing clearly. People who generally feel they can hear, but cannot understand words clearly are encouraged to come in for the test, which uses the latest electronic equipment. Everyone, especially those over age 55 should have an electronic hearing test once

a year. Demonstrations of the latest devices to improve clarity of speech will be programmed using a computer to your particular needs — on the spot — after the tests. See (and HEAR) for yourself if newlydeveloped methods of correction will help you understand words better. Tests will be performed at one of 20 convenient Greater Twin Cities Avada Hearing Care locations.

Call 1-800-435-5189 ©2010 HHM, Inc. 304

Priests named to Vocations Office, new clergy institute Father Troy Przybilla was named director of the archdiocesan Vocations Office and Father Peter Williams was named director of the Institute for Ongoing Clergy Formation, both effective Jan. 15. They are among the four priests and one deacon who are receiving new assignments from Archbishop John Nienstedt. FATHER PRZYBILLA Father Przybilla, who was ordained in 2005, has been serving as pastor of Immaculate Conception in Lonsdale and parochial administrator at Immaculate Conception of Marysburg in Madison Lake and Nativity of Mary in Cleveland. He previously served at St. Peter in Forest Lake. Father Williams, who was serving as vocations director, will direct the new ongoing clergy formation institute. He will also continue as pastor at Maternity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in St. Paul. After he was ordained in 2004, Father Williams served two years at St. Vincent de Paul in Brooklyn Park. Beginning Dec. 18, Father Steven Hoffman will serve as parochial administrator of St. Luke in Clearwater, and Father Jacob Yali will serve as chaplain of Fairview University Hospital in Minneapolis. Father Hoffman, who was ordained Dec. 8, 2007, has been serving as pastor of Gichitwaa Kateri in Minneapolis since June. Previously, he served as parochial vicar at St. John Neumann in Eagan. Father Yali, who was ordained in 1977, has been serving as pastor of St. Luke in Clearwater since 2003. He previously served as a hospital chaplain. Deacon Gregg Sroder was named deacon of St. Odilia in Shoreview, beginning Jan. 1. After his ordination in 2001, he served at Sacred Heart in St. Paul and Guardian Angels in Chaska. OFFICIAL Archbishop John C. Nienstedt has made the following appointments in the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis:

Subscriptions: $29.95 per year Senior 1-year: $24.95 To subscribe: (651) 291-4444 Display Advertising: (651) 291-4444 Classified advertising: (651) 290-1631

Effective December 18, 2010: Rev. Steven Hoffman; parochial administrator, Church of St. Luke, Clearwater. Rev. Jacob Yali; chaplain, Fairview University Hospital, Minneapolis.

Published bi-weekly by the Catholic Spirit Publishing Company, a non-profit Minnesota Corporation, 244 Dayton Ave., St. Paul, MN 55102 (651) 291-4444, FAX (651) 291-4460. Periodicals postage paid at St. Paul, MN, and additional post offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to The Catholic Spirit, 244 Dayton Ave., St. Paul, MN 55102.

Effective Jan. 1, 2011: Deacon Gregg Sroder; deacon, St. Odilia of Shoreview. e-mail: USPS #093-580

Effective Jan. 15, 2010: Rev. Troy Przybilla; Director of the Vocations Office — Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. Rev. Peter Williams; Director of the Institute for Ongoing Clergy Formation, Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis; continuing as pastor of Maternity of Mary, St. Paul.

“Peace here on earth cannot be maintained unless the good of the human person is safeguarded, and men are willing to trust each other and share their riches of spirit and talent.” Guadium et Spes

Local DECEMBER 16, 2010

News from arund the archdiocese

The Catholic Spirit


Project Christmas gives Risen Christ families gift of dignity By Pat Norby The Catholic Spirit

Every year at this time, Helen Dahlman’s office and conference room at Risen Christ School in Minneapolis looks like a cross between a retail store and a consignment shop. Shiny winter coats and snow pants in a rainbow of pinks, blues, greens and black were jammed onto a clothing rack that was wedged into a space near the principal’s small conference table. Boxes at the bottom of the rack were filled with hats, mittens and gloves that were sorted and labeled by size and gender. All around the room, tubes of bright Christmas wrapping paper jutted out from lumpy garbage bags, tagged with numbers written on masking tape and leaning against the walls. One by one, 139 of the 200 families who have children enrolled at the school have been picking up the bags, which are filled with Christmas gifts purchased with care by an anonymous donor specifically for each family. “As donations come in, we want to get them out the door quickly,” Dahlman said. But maintaining the privacy and dignity of the recipients is always foremost in the minds of those involved.

Down to a science After about 10 years of coordinating Project Christmas at the school, Jane Keple and Tessa Floersch have it down to a science. Early in the school year, families are invited to submit a list of Christmas gift wishes for their children. A preprinted list asks families to include the following information for every child — newborn to 18 years old — in the home: the child’s name, age, grade, gender, shoe and cloth-

Dave Hrbacek / The Catholic Spirit

From left, Claudia Correa reacts as she looks at gifts donated to her family through Risen Christ School’s Project Christmas. Correa is a secretary at the school and also the parent of a student — Maria, a second-grader. Tessa Floersch is school secretary and also co-organizer of Project Christmas, along with Jane Keple, a school social worker with Catholic Charities.

ing sizes, favorite color and items they need and want. Floersch, Risen Christ’s bilingual secretary/receptionist and woman-of-manytalents, said that winter clothing is often the only thing on many of the lists. “Jane goes through [the wish lists] and adds other gift ideas, based on a child’s age and gender, just to give the donor some other ideas,” Floersch said. Keple, a bilingual Catholic Charities social worker and school counselor, said, “We’re a school, so we like the whole notion that everything that children learn through play matters, too. So I suggest board games, books, blocks, anything that has to do with child development.” Tears of overwhelming surprise and joy often flow freely when parents come to pick up the gifts for their children,

Keple said. “It’s appreciation, but almost beyond, because they haven’t had this experience before,” she said. “I think it’s a nice connection for the families with the school and the greater community to know that they are cared about.” Dahlman said that when the parents pick up the donated gifts, they often say: “All of this is for us?”

Many generous donors Because of the donor families and organizations, such as Macy’s — which donated the cold weather clothing — families at Risen Christ, of which 61 percent are Latino, will have an abundance of gifts to give their children and, in many cases, to the children of relatives living with them. No child in the household is left out, whether attending the

school or not, Dahlman added. Floersch said Project Christmas is worth all the work that goes into it because of the “joy it brings to my own sense of Christmas.” The project has come a long way since the days when Holy Name and Holy Rosary would each provide gifts for about 25 parish families. But the requests kept growing at the combined Minneapolis school. “It just didn’t seem right to us that we could only do that much,” Dahlman said. “We really wanted to serve those most in need.” With 90 percent of the students receiving free or reduced-eligibility lunches, Floersch and Keple began offering the program to every family at Risen Christ School. Their only concern was finding enough sponsors. Although that has never been a problem, the two thought they wouldn’t have enough donors one year. Then, donations came streaming in and filled all their needs, Keple said. “This year, every single one of our families was adopted out or sponsored,” Floersch said. “This is the first time I told potential sponsors that all the families were adopted out, but they could purchase gift cards for food.”

Catholic Charities help This year, 30 of the school’s families are being served through Catholic Charities’ “Sponsor a Family” program, which provides gifts and food for families throughout the archdiocese. In 2009, Catholic Charities provided gifts and food cards for 1,331 families, giving an average of $75 per person to 5,962 individuals, according to the organization’s website, WWW.CCTWINCITIES.ORG. More than 428 PLEASE TURN TO FAMILIES ON PAGE 19A




St. Joan of Arc parishioners rally around Iraqi family By Dave Hrbacek The Catholic Spirit

On a snowy night in the Twin Cities, Shaymaa Hasan stepped outside the door of a south Minneapolis home to watch the flakes fall gently from the sky. She leaned out through the doorway and cupped her hands together to catch the snow. As the flakes landed, her face lit up and she squealed with delight. This was a most unfamiliar experience for the 28-yearold who grew up in Iraq and made her first trip to Minnesota earlier this fall. As it turns out, she could be around until the snow starts to melt in March. The reason for her visit is her 8-year-old son, Mustafa, who was severely burned in an electrical accident in his hometown of Najaf and needs medical care he only can get in the United States. Thanks to the generosity of parishioners at St. Joan of Arc in Minneapolis, he will get everything he needs, including a prosthetic leg. Due to complications from his injuries and lack of timely care, his right leg was amputated below the knee at a hospital in Iraq. He also lost two toes on his left foot and suffered damage to his left shoulder.

Making a difference The story began about a year ago, when a group of St. Joan parishioners and the pastor, Father Jim DeBruycker, asked local Iraqis what they could do to help the wartorn country. The answer: Provide medical care for Iraqi children. Immediately, Father DeBruycker put a notice in the church bulletin soliciting ideas and volunteers. Enter Marie Braun, a peace activist longing for a chance to make a difference, and Terri Kasbohm, director of patient care services at Shriners Hospital for Children in Minneapolis. Braun saw the notice and stepped forward to help. So did Kasbohm, who said the hospital routinely provides charity care for children in three areas — orthopedics, oncology and burn treatment. The next step was asking a local Iraqi, Sami Rasouli, to help find a child who met the criteria. He makes regular visits to Iraq, so he went back to look for someone who qualified for the kind of help Shriners could offer. “The first patient he found was Mustafa,” Kasbohm

Dave Hrbacek / The Catholic Spirit

From left, Shaymaa Hasan and her son, Mustafa, enjoy playing music with Gabriel Lutter-Gardella and his father, Christopher, at their home in south Minneapolis. Shaymaa and Mustafa arrived in the Twin Cities from Iraq in September and are here so Mustafa can receive treatment for injuries from an electrical burn he suffered in Iraq.

said. “Mustafa met the age requirements.” But, before he could come, the parish needed to come up with money to pay for his and his mother’s airfares. Then, they needed a place for them to stay while they went back and forth to visit hospitals and doctors. Jeannette and Chris Lutter-Gardella agreed to be the host family, along with their two children, Gabriel, 6, and Asialy Bracey-Gardella, 14. The opportunity did not come at the greatest time, as both parents were battling with underemployment and a kitchen remodeling project. Nevertheless, they accepted Braun’s invitation to receive the two Iraqis into their home. “I thought, ‘Now? When we’re having a shortage of work?’” said Chris, a freelance artist and musician struggling to find jobs. “But I have a belief that when things are difficult, people need to pull together and help each other. That’s what this is all about.” Added Jeannette: “You give of your means. I feel a deep responsibility [to help] and I want to pass that

along to my children. . . . It’s our act of peace. It’s how we live our value — that peace is not just the absence of war, it’s an active process.”

Medical community chips in Shaymaa and Mustafa arrived on Sept. 18. Parishioners and Shriners got the ball rolling instantly. During Mustafa’s first visit to Shriners, there was a doctor there that day from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester who specializes in the type of surgery Mustafa needed on his left shoulder. That proved to be providential, as the staff at Shriners did not know about his shoulder problems and, more important, was not in a position to treat them even had it known. Continuing the generosity already bestowed upon the boy, Dr. Steven Moran said he would ask his superiors at Mayo if they would cover the cost of the surgery, which is scheduled to take place in the next couple of weeks PLEASE TURN TO HOSPITALS ON PAGE 23A

Dancers kick it up a notch for charity at Catholic Jamboree “He was definitely happy,” said Becki Goulet, parent of Liz Goulet, a junior and member of the BSM Varsity jazz and high kick dance teams. “He kept saying he was so glad he came.” Goulet credits the dedication of more than 50 BSM parent volunteers with creating a successful event. “The week before Thanksgiving, Benilde also hosted the first conference jazz meet of the year, so we’ve been busy,” she said.

By Julie Pfitzinger The Catholic Spirit

Seven high school dance teams participated in an event that took the focus away from competition and put it squarely on compassion during the Dec. 4 Catholic Jamboree at Benilde-St. Margaret’s in St. Louis Park. For the first time, the annual high kick and jazz event, formerly the Catholic Quad Meet, was a fundraiser, with proceeds going to the Autism Society of Minnesota, a St. Paul organization that supports individuals with autism spectrum disorders through education and resources. Participating schools were Academy of Holy Angels, Hill-Murray, Holy Family Catholic, Benilde-St. Margaret’s, Totino-Grace, Cathedral High School/John XXIII Middle School in St. Cloud and New Ulm Cathedral. The Autism Society was selected by all of the coaches because sisters Kelly Newlin and Kerry Marshall, coaches of the AHA dance team, have a cousin with autism. “We started talking about how vital service is in our Catholic school communities,” said Kelly McGinnis, who coaches the BSM Knightettes with Tracy Stendal, both former Knightettes. “By all the teams sharing our common passion for dance, we thought we could also give back and do something positive.”

Coach, team camaraderie

Autism Society only winner Although teams were judged with the same criteria used at a standard high school dance competition, just feedback about their performances was given. No winner was selected. McGinnis said the spirit of the day was “more about a dance show than a competition.” The first section of the event was devoted to jazz performances; the second to high kick. In between the two rounds, there was a raffle for a new iPad. Participants

Dianne Towalski / The Catholic Spirit

Seniors Natalie Huber, center, Ali Colburn, left and Ashley Blau, members of the Academy of Holy Angels junior varsity dance team, participated in the Catholic Jamboree Dec. 4 at Benilde-St. Margaret’s. Watch video from the event at THECATHOLICSPIRIT.COM.

purchased a bead for $5 that entitled them to play the “Heads or Tails” game. A student from AHA won.

Sara Marek, longtime St. Cloud Cathedral coach, said the usual competitive nature of a dance event gave way to a more relaxed, less pressure-filled day for all the girls. “It was different for them at first, but once the event started, everything went so well,” she said. “We had the opportunity to put everything aside to just dance and benefit others at the same time.” Marek said it was especially meaningful to see several representatives from the Autism Society of Minnesota, all dressed in green, in attendance. At the end of the event, the team captains each stood up and read a short paragraph about the work of the Autism Society and offered ideas about ways audience members could support the organization in the future. McGinnis said more than $3,000 was raised from ticket, headband and T-shirt sales and raffle proceeds. The coaches would like to see the Catholic Jamboree become a yearly tradition, with host schools and charities changing each year. “Hopefully, this event will be kind of a catapult for other groups to consider following in the same direction and do what they can to help others,” said Marek. “We really think it was a great experience for all the schools and for the girls,” said McGinnis.




Escape from slavery Minnesota girl’s plight highlights problem of human trafficking By Julie Carroll

ishes from the face of the earth.”

The Catholic Spirit

Kayla’s story

Kayla thought she was going to a church service. She couldn’t have been more wrong. The 10-year-old asked her grandmother, Lauren, if she would drive her and her friend Jasmine to a house in the suburbs where the service was to take place. An hour later, when the girls emerged from the house, Jasmine had her arm draped around Kayla, who was crying. Lauren asked what was wrong. Not to worry, Jasmine replied, Kayla had just fallen. What Lauren didn’t realize then was that, inside that house in the suburbs, her granddaughter had indeed fallen — into the shadowy underworld of human trafficking. Human trafficking is the illegal trade in human beings for commercial sexual exploitation or forced labor. It is modernday slavery. An estimated 100,000 to 300,000 American children are sold for sex annually, according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Minnesota ranks as one of the top 10 states for sex trafficking, experts say. It is the portal to the “Minnesota Pipeline,” a series of states through which victims are channeled to New York. Under federal law, however, trafficking, despite connotations, does not require movement of victims. A person can be a victim of sex trafficking without ever leaving home. “Human trafficking is a horrific crime against the basic dignity and rights of the human person. All efforts must be expended to end it,” the U.S. bishops said in their 2007 statement “On Human Trafficking.” The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has played a key role in providing education, advocacy and services for survivors of human trafficking. Since 2002, the USCCB has assisted more than 2,600 trafficking victims and their families. It also founded the Coalition of Catholic Organizations Against Human Trafficking. “In the end,” the bishops said, “we must work together — church, state and community — to eliminate the root causes and markets that permit traffickers to flourish; to make whole the survivors of this crime; and to ensure that, one day soon, trafficking in human persons van-

At her home on a quiet, tree-lined street in the Twin Cities, Lauren told the story of Kayla, now 13, whom she is raising along with the girl’s 6-month-old baby. She said she hopes her story will help other parents keep their children safe from predators. To protect the victim’s identity, all names in this article have been changed. Kayla’s story began in 2006, when Jasmine, who is four years older than Kayla, befriended her at church. The girls’ age difference concerned Lauren, she said, but she didn’t interfere because the friendship was “under a spiritual guardianship, so to speak.” Before long, however, Lauren noticed disturbing changes in Kayla’s behavior. “[Jasmine] dressed in a real sexual way, and I noticed [Kayla] started picking this up too,” Lauren said. That wasn’t all. “Her language started changing, she started using more slang and swear words, talking street lingo. And she started being defiant towards me and rude,” Lauren said. “She’d go into rages, she’d throw things, she’d beat on walls. I couldn’t understand where these rages were coming from.” Kayla’s life hadn’t been perfect. Her father was absent. Her mother, who died when Kayla was 12, was a drug addict. At times Kayla rebelled, but never before had she been violent, Lauren said. One day, Kayla told Lauren that Jasmine wanted her to steal thong underwear from a Target store. “And she said I have to have sex, too,” the 10-year-old disclosed to her grandmother. “I was just shocked,” Lauren said. When she asked Kayla how Jasmine had tried to convince her to do things that Lauren had taught her were wrong, Kayla replied: “She said it’s OK to steal because the grown-ups in this society have stolen our future anyway. . . . And, she said that most girls have already had sex by the time they’re my age.”

“Human trafficking is a horrific crime against the basic dignity and rights of the human person. All efforts must be expended to end it.

‘The game’


Photo illustration

An estimated 100,000 to 300,000 American children become victims of sex trafficking every year, according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

The average age at which girls first become victims of prostitution is 12 to 14, according to a 2001 national study. But many traffickers begin “grooming,” or gaining the trust of, their victims PLEASE TURN TO LOCAL ON PAGE 20A

“We need this message today as much as they needed it 150 years ago; the message to proclaim the Gospel, each one of us, in our families and in our workplace.” Bishop David Ricken of Green Bay, who Dec. 8 approved the Marian apparitions that occurred in 1859 some 18 miles northeast of Green Bay

Nation/World 6A

DECEMBER 16, 2010

News from around the U.S. and the globe

The Catholic Spirit

Green Bay bishop approves Marian apparitions By Sam Lucero Catholic News Service

Bishop David Ricken of Green Bay has approved the Marian apparitions seen by Adele Brise in 1859, making the apparitions of Mary that occurred some 18 miles northeast of Green Bay the first in the United States to receive approval of a diocesan bishop. Bishop Ricken made the announcement in Champion during Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help Dec. 8, the feast of the Immaculate Conception. More than 250 invited guests filled the shrine chapel to hear Bishop Ricken read the official decree on the authenticity of the apparitions. He also issued a second decree, formally approving the shrine as a diocesan shrine. The bishop’s decree comes nearly two years after he opened a formal investigation into the apparitions. On Jan. 9, 2009, he appointed three theologians to study the case. The theologians’ names were not released by the diocese. But Father John Doerfler, vicar general and chancellor, said all three had expertise in Marian theology and “general experience in examining apparitions,” adding that two are internationally recognized. Brise was 28 when Mary appeared to her three times in October 1859. The first appearance took place while Brise was carrying a sack of wheat to a grist mill about four

miles from Robinsonville, now known as Champion. A few days later, on Oct. 9, as Brise walked to Sunday Mass in Bay Settlement, about 11 miles from her home, Mary appeared to her again. After Mass, Brise told the pastor what she had seen. He told her to “ask in God’s name who it was and what it desired of her,” according to a historical account found on the shrine’s website. On the way home from Bay Settlement, Mary again appeared to Brise. When Brise asked who the woman was, Mary responded, “I am the Queen of Heaven, who prays for the conversion of sinners, and I wish you to do the same.”

Teaching children She told Brise to “gather the children in this wild country and teach them what they should know for salvation. Teach them their catechism, how to sign themselves with the sign of the cross and how to approach the sacraments.” Brise devoted the rest of her life to teaching children. She began a community of secular Franciscans and built a school next to the shrine. Brise’s father, Lambert, built a small chapel near the spot of the apparitions. When a brick chapel was built in 1880, the trees where Mary appeared were cut down and the chapel’s altar was placed over the spot. Today, the shrine, which sits on six acres of farmland, receives thousands of visitors each year.

The grave of Adele Brise, left, is pictured near the Chapel of Our Lady of Good Help in Robinsonvil le, Wis., in this 2007 file photo. CNS photo / Sam Lucero, The Compass


THE CATHOLIC SPIRIT • DECEMBER 16, 2010 By Joe Towalski The Catholic Spirit

“And behold, the star that they had seen at its rising preceded them, until it came and stopped over the place where the child was” (Matthew: 2:9). If it weren’t for the Gospel of Matthew’s brief reference to a star guiding Magi from the East to the newborn Messiah, “we wouldn’t know anything about the Star of Bethlehem,” according to a Minnesota astronomer. The Gospel account is the only historical reference from that time correlating a celestial event with Jesus’ birth, said Terrence Flower, a professor of physics at St. Catherine University in St. Paul who has delivered an annual public lecture about the star in the lead up to Christmas for more than 30 years. “I think one thing you have to recognize is that the event [from an astronomical point of view] maybe wasn’t one that was earth-shaking and likely may not have even been one that was recorded with significant detail by others,” he said. Still, even though the Star of Bethlehem is only mentioned in a few verses of the Bible, it has become an integral part of our Christmas traditions — from the customary decoration we place atop our Christmas trees to its mention in popular carols like “We Three Kings” and “The First Noel.” So what did the Magi see exactly? Was it a star, in the way we understand what a star is today? Or could it have been something entirely different — something in the sky that caught the attention of the Magi, prompting them to make the long trek across the Middle Eastern desert to bring special gifts to the Christ Child?

Many ideas considered It shouldn’t be surprising that a star was associated with the birth of the Messiah; a footnote in the New American Bible explains it was a common ancient belief that a new star appeared at the time of a ruler’s birth. People of faith, of course, can’t rule out the possibility that God temporarily placed a special star in the sky to signal Jesus’ birth, Flower said. But science would have a difficult time proving such an extraordinary event. Could the guiding light have been a phenomenon more familiar to sky-watchers both then and now? One idea is that the Star of Bethlehem was a meteor — commonly known as a “shooting star.” But because of a shooting star’s ephemeral nature — even a spectacular one lasts for only a second or two — it wouldn’t have garnered much notice, Flower said. Another possibility is the Star of Bethlehem was a nova — a sudden brightening of a star that already exists — or a supernova, an extremely bright, exploding star.

Wondering about the ‘Star of Wonder’ Was it a special star? Comet? Planet? Theories abound about Star of Bethlehem

A supernova is a fairly rare occurrence and probably would have been easily visible to the naked eye. Records indicate that a supernova was seen in about 126 B.C. and then not again until about A.D. 134, Flower said. If one occurred near the time of Jesus’ birth, it likely would have been recorded elsewhere in addition to the Gospel of Matthew. A comet is another possibility, Flower said. Halley’s comet, perhaps the best-known short-period comet, which is visible from earth every 75 to 76 years, made an appearance in 12 B.C. That was too early, however, to coincide with Jesus’ birth, which, based on the known date of King Herod’s death in 4 B.C. and accounting for a mistake made when the Roman calendar was re-dated in the sixth century, likely occurred sometime between 7 B.C. and 4 B.C. A better candidate, Flower said, is a conjunction of the planets Jupiter and Saturn that occurred three times in 7 B.C.

Wandering stars “Conjunction” is a term describing when two planets are closest together in the sky, as seen from Earth. At the time of Jesus birth, Jupiter and Saturn were among the five planets known to astrologers and sky-watchers. The world “planet” means “wandering star,” and planets are so named because they appear to move in relation to the set background of stars. The triple conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn occurred in May, October and December of 7 B.C., Flower said.

The Magi — believed to be Wise Men or astrologers from the East — would have viewed this as a significant event for several reasons, he noted. In ancient times, Jupiter was considered the star of kings, Saturn was the protector of Israel, and the constellation Pisces — where all three conjunctions occurred — was associated with the land of the Jews. So when the Magi saw this “star at its rising” — meaning they saw it rise in the morning sky — they may have considered a trip toward Jerusalem, where they may have thought that a significant event was about to take place. Bethlehem is only six miles from there. One possible scenario Flower outlines is that the Magi saw the first conjunction in May. When they saw the second in October, they may have packed up their caravan for a trip toward Jerusalem. In December, they met with Herod and then set out for Bethlehem. The two planets would have appeared directly ahead of them in the sky as they traveled south from Jerusalem. Reflecting on what the Star of Bethlehem might have been offers insights into part of the Christmas story, Flower said. But it shouldn’t overshadow the real meaning of the feast. “A star is not what Christmas is about. The star, on one hand, is a guide to the Wise Men and, on the other hand, is an announcement of something important,” he said. Ultimately, though, it only serves to shed more light on what the main focus of Christmas is — the birth of Christ.

Star and city of Bethlehem hold theological significance Although the Star of Bethlehem can be examined from a scientific perspective, it also has theological significance, as does the city itself. The Catholic Spirit recently interviewed Father Scott Carl, assistant professor of Sacred Scripture at St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity, about Bethlehem and the star. Q: How often is Bethlehem mentioned in the Scriptures? What’s said about it? About 45 times in the Old Testament; eight times in the New Testament (all in the Gospels). In the Old Testament Bethlehem is the place of burial for Rachel (Jacob’s wife) (Genesis 35:19; 48:7); the site of the tomb is thus sacred to the Jewish people. Bethlehem is also important in the book of Ruth (named after the great-grandmother of David) (Ruth 1; 2:4; 4:11), but its most prominent reference is in regard to King David. It was the home of his family (1 Samuel 16:1; 17:12) and the place where he was anointed king (1 Samuel 16:4-13). Significantly, the New Testament makes one reference to Bethlehem in the Old Testament. The Gospel of Matthew (2:6) makes reference to Micah 5:1 saying that, though small, Bethlehem would be of great significance because a ruler was to come from there to rule Israel. In the New Testament, the use of Bethlehem is always in regard to the place of Jesus’ birth. It is, then, the

“David put Bethlehem on the map, and Jesus made sure it would never be forgotten.

FATHER SCOTT CARL place of the manger (Luke 2:7). Q: What is the significance of Bethlehem being the place of Jesus’ birth? Is this an important city at that time? Think of an important city: New York, Mexico City, London, Tokyo. Did Tovar cross your mind? Not likely; we usually associate the importance of a city with its size. (Tovar is the Venezuelan hometown of former Twins pitcher Johan Santana with a population of about 17,000.) The significance of Bethlehem is more like Tovar than New York; its importance is not in its size as the prophecy of Micah demonstrates (Micah 5:1; cf. Mt 2:6). Rather its importance is that it was the city of David. Moreover, God promised that David would always have a descendent on the throne. But, by the time Jesus came,

the waters of that promise became pretty muddy. Being born in Bethlehem, Jesus fulfilled the prophecy of Micah that a ruler of Israel would come from there. Jesus was then the newborn, and long-awaited, king and Messiah. David put Bethlehem on the map, and Jesus made sure it would never be forgotten. Q: Do you think there is some theological significance to the Gospel account that a star signaled the birth of Jesus? Definitely! First, Matthew tells us that the Magi have seen “his star at its rising” (Matthew 2:2). His readers would have made a connection to the promise made to Abraham that his descendents would be like the stars of heaven (Genesis 15:5; 22:17); Jesus is one of these descendents who surely stands out. Second, Numbers 24:17 says that “a star shall advance from Jacob.” This verse was seen as a prophecy about the Messiah who was to come. Jesus, being a descendent of Abraham, thus, comes from the line of Jacob, and so the star of Bethlehem fulfills this Old Testament prophecy. Third, the fact that the Magi, astrologers from the East, seeing the star, come looking for the newborn king shows that the Gospel message is not just for those of Jesus’ race but for all people. The star, therefore, helps to communicate the universal significance to Jesus’ birth.

“Contemplation of the revealed God and charity toward our neighbors cannot be separated.” Pope Benedict XVI, speaking, Dec. 3, to members of the International Theological Commission

This Catholic Life 8A

DECEMBER 16, 2010

Opinion, feedback and points to ponder

The Catholic Spirit

Poverty snapshot Catholic Charities CEO presents sobering statistics, ideas for change By Julie Pfitzinger

ing to Father Snyder, conjecture for what the current line should be is closer to $45,000, given the cost of living today. “We have to have a realistic evaluation of how many people in this country are actually living in poverty,” he said. “The estimates now are about 48 million, but if we use an accurate measurement, the figure will be much higher.”

For The Catholic Spirit

Legislation instrumental

Father Larry Snyder, former CEO of the local organization and now president and CEO of Catholic Charities USA, offered some sobering statistics reflecting the persistent economic challenges facing this country during a recent presentation at the Catholic Charities office in Minneapolis. Since fall 2008, FATHER SNYDER Catholic Charities USA has surveyed all of its member constituents every quarter to take what Father Snyder referred to as “a snapshot” of the economic situation nationwide. In the third quarter of 2010, results showed an 81 percent increase in requests for help from the working poor and a 71 percent increase from families — just since the second quarter. Catholic Charities USA is currently concluding its centennial year and Father Snyder said the goals of the organization today are much like the ones established by its founders in 1910. “We want to focus on ideas to prevent poverty that will work in the next 100 years, just as they did,” he said. “We are committed to reducing poverty by half by the year 2020. We see that as our legacy.”

In September, the National Opportunity and Community Renewal Act, a piece of legislation crafted by Catholic Charities USA, was introduced by Sen. Robert Carey (D-PA) and Rep. James McGovern (D-MA) in Washington, D.C. According to Catholic Charities USA, this legislation would be instrumental in “developing and empowering local markets, creating new holistic approaches and incentivizing results-driven outcomes with more modern use of technologies so that the federal government can invest in programs that truly bring people into selfsufficiency.” As part of this legislation, a 10city pilot program is being proposed, and Father Snyder said he would like to see the Twin Cities have the opportunity to be selected as a pilot city. “I think they have all the ingredients here that could make this work,” he said. One of the next steps that Catholic Charities USA plans to take to create momentum around this legislation is to hold meetings with constituents around the country to gauge feedback and generate more ideas since, as Father Snyder said, the proposed legislation is still in its “concept” phase. The presentation by Father Snyder in Minneapolis was one of the first constituent meetings and those in attendance included Catholic Charities staff and board members, local funding partners and other interested parties. Cathy Heying, director of the human

Seeking solutions To that end, Catholic Charities USA sponsored 10 regional summits across the country over the course of this past year: the first was held in St. Paul, and other sites included Chicago; San Antonio, Texas; Newark, N.J.; and Cleveland. The purpose of the summits was to hear from local constituents about their communities and to help determine best practices to find solutions. “The most basic message we heard from these summits is that the system is broken,” said Father Snyder. “We must create 21st century solutions to 21st century problems.” One of the many challenges is that the basic support systems used to meet the needs of the poor are still based on the systems of the 1960s, when they were first established. In addition, the current line of poverty for a family of four is $22,050, but accord-

rights program for St. Stephen’s Human Services, said she thought the legislative concept was interesting. “We need to be innovative if we are serious about ending poverty in this country,” she said. “I believe it is important that we include people who have actually experienced poverty and homelessness in any of these efforts. They are

the ones with the wisdom about what needs to be done.” Adam Robinson, public policy organizer for the local Catholic Charities Office of Social Justice, was also encouraged by what he heard in the presentation. “The way the face of poverty is changing in this country makes it more difficult for people to talk about poverty, but we will need the support of the broader community to make the changes that are needed,” he said. Father Snyder is also the author of “Think and Act Anew: How Poverty in America Affects Us All and What We Can Do about It” (Orbis Books) which focuses on the work of Catholic Charities USA and includes stories from people who have been directly affected by the economic crisis. When asked about the book, Father Snyder said one of his goals was to provide background for readers on the principles of Catholic social teaching, with a particular focus on “Caritas in Veritate,” the third encyclical by Pope Benedict XVI, released in 2009. “There is such incredible wisdom in this encyclical and I wanted to make the connection between the Holy Father’s teaching and the current economic state of the world and of our nation,” said Father Snyder. “As we rebuild our social structures, we need to pay attention to that teaching.” For more detailed information about the National Opportunity and Community Renewal Act, visit WWW.CATHOLIC CHARITIESUSA.ORG.

This Catholic Life / Opinion-Letters


What are kids praying for this Christmas? know Christmas is around the corner when I walk into our administrative manager’s office this time of year and have trouble seeing her behind the tall stacks of large envelopes. Mary Gibbs is the official collector of entries for The Catholic Spirit’s annual Christmas poster contest. This year, some 1,700 youth — kindergartners through 12th-graders — sent us drawings. They were required to finish the phrase, “This Christmas I’ll be praying for…” and then illustrate the finished sentence with a picture. I recently set aside an evening to go through the entries and select a handful from each category so that the judging panel, made up of members of the newspaper staff, had a manageable number to look at and pick winners.


From the Editor Joe Towalski

The vast majority of young artists were thinking about the real meaning of Christmas when they drew their posters

Thinking of others Some kids have incredible artistic talent. Other entries caught my attention because of the sentiments expressed. Sure, some youth indicated they were praying for video games and other presents for themselves, but the vast majority of young artists were contemplating the real meaning of Christmas when they drew their posters. Many were praying for world

One of the poster contest entries, submitted by Connor Gordon, an eighth-grader at St. John the Baptist School, Savage.

peace, family members, and the poor and homeless. Some had other things on their minds. Here’s a sampling of what some artists said they would be praying for: “. . . for every person living in Haiti to have a home.” “. . . for families whose loved ones will be meeting Jesus.” “. . . for single parents.” “. . . for people that lost their

jobs.” “. . . for my Korean sister Lizzy so there is no war between North and South Korea.” “. . . for the seminarians.” “. . . for priests. Because they pray for us.” “. . . for the archdiocese.” “. . . for all the soldiers that are away from their families.” “ . . . for all immigrants.” “. . . for no judgments.” “. . . for parents who are having trouble with marriage.” “. . . for breast cancer patients.” “. . . for my grandfather to stop smoking for good.” “. . . for all the polar bears that are losing their homes.” “. . . for the people who don’t know Jesus, that His love will fill their hearts.” One third-grader said she was praying for The Catholic Spirit. We need those prayers as we prepare to celebrate our 100th anniversary in January and embark on another century of service to Catholics of the archdiocese. You’ll be reading more about the centennial in our next issue, Jan. 7. To view this year’s poster winners, turn to page 11A. Or go to our website, THECATHOLICSPIRIT.COM, for a slide show of winners and honorable mentions.

We have Mary as our model to follow CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2A antagonistic to mankind and an enemy of human freedom. There had been, the pope said, an attempt to obscure the truth that God sent Jesus into the world so that no one would perish but that all might have eternal life (John 3:16). At that point in his presentation, the Holy Father asked a penetrating question: “How is it then that God who is the light of every mind, the power of every will and the magnet of every heart, be denied the right to propose the light that dissipates all darkness?” And then he added, “Europe must open itself to God, it must come to meet him without fear, and work with his grace for that human dignity which was discerned

by her best traditions. . . .”

Mary’s example It seems to me that the pope’s message needs to be heard in our own country as well. So many of our brothers and sisters here in the United States of America have closed themselves off to God who reveals himself in Jesus Christ and in his teachings. There is a great need, therefore, for men and women to have a personal experience with the presence of Jesus Christ. In addition, the mystery of the Incarnation calls for our human participation and cooperation in this process of the Word becoming flesh. As Jesus reveals the face of God to us, we in turn reveal Jesus to others by the witness of our lives. In doing so, we have, as our model to follow, Mary, the Mother of the

Archbishop’s schedule ■ Friday-Saturday, Dec. 17-18: Buffalo, Minn., Christ the King Retreat Center: Retreat for men discerning the priesthood. ■ Monday, Dec. 20: 11:30 a.m., St. Paul, Leo C. Byrne Residence: Annual Christmas social and luncheon with residents. 3 p.m., St. Paul, Chancery: Staff meeting with members for school viability. 4:30 p.m., St. Paul, Jesuit Novitiate: Mass and dinner with Jesuit novices. ■ Tuesday, Dec. 21: 8:30 a.m., St. Paul, Archbishop’s Residence: Scheduling meeting with staff. 9:30 a.m., St. Paul, Chancery: Archbishop’s Council meeting. 11:30 a.m., St. Paul, Archbishop’s Residence: Advent open house for archdiocesan priests. ■ Thursday, Dec. 23: 12 p.m., St. Paul, Town and Country Club: Archdiocesan employees’ Christmas luncheon. 7 p.m., St. Michael, St. Michael Catholic Church: Advent penance service. ■ Friday, Dec. 24: 10:45 p.m., St. Paul, Cathedral of St. Paul: Festival of Carols, followed by Christmas Eve Midnight liturgy. ■ Saturday, Dec. 25: 9:30 a.m., Minneapolis, Basilica of St.

Divine Word, who consciously permitted God to use her in presenting Jesus to the world. When we pray to her with Advent hope, we are asking Mary to show us how to be generous in responding to the Father’s will in making Jesus known and loved by the men and women with whom we associate. No other human being knew Jesus as well as Mary did. When we get close to her, we become, by necessity, close to him. And that, too, is a part of what the mystery of the Incarnation offers. I hope you have time to meditate on this great mystery of the Incarnation as we approach the feast of Christmas. There is much in this teaching that will not only console you but challenge your growth in faith as well. God love you!

Mary: Christmas Day liturgy. ■ Sunday, Jan. 2: 2 p.m., Washington, D.C., Basilica of Immaculate Conception: Mass of thanksgiving in celebration of the 25th episcopal anniversary of His Eminence, Donald Cardinal Wuerl. ■ Monday, Jan. 3: 5:30 p.m., Stillwater, Church of St. Michael: Concelebrating Holy Eucharist, followed by the St. Croix Catholic School “Light Their Way” fundraising dinner with His Eminence, Raymond Cardinal Burke. ■ Tuesday, Jan. 4: 8:30 a.m., St. Paul, Archbishop’s Residence: Scheduling meeting with staff. 1:30 p.m., St. Paul, Chancery: Archbishop’s cabinet meeting. ■ Wednesday, Jan. 5: 12 p.m., St. Paul, Archbishop’s Residence: Luncheon with Totino-Grace High School football seniors. ■ Thursday, Jan. 6: 7:30 a.m., St. Paul, St. Mary’s Chapel at The St. Paul Seminary: Concelebrating Holy Eucharist with His Eminence, John Cardinal Foley. 6 p.m., Minneapolis, Nicollet Island Pavilion: Launch event for The Catholic Spirit’s 100th anniversary celebration. ■ Friday to Saturday, Jan. 7 - 15: Region VIII bishops’ retreat in Tucson, Ariz.


We asked: Did you cancel Mass? The Catholic Spirit asked via e-mail if parishes in the archdiocese canceled Mass and activities due to the Dec. 11 snowstorm. This reply from Father Dennis Dempsey makes a number of points that are worthy of space on the “Opinion” page. Here at St. Dominic in Northfield we had plenty of snow, and the company that plows our lot couldn’t get out until Sunday morning. With Our Lady of Guadalupe celebrations scheduled for the evening of the 11th and the afternoon of the 12th, several folks came in the early afternoon on Saturday to set up and then stayed through the evening with rosary, a movie on the image of Guadalupe, etc. More came in the evening to join them for rosary and Mañanitas. When it came time for them to leave around 10:30 p.m. the road in front of church had been plowed, but it took several guys pushing and with shovels to get the cars out of the parking lot. We didn’t cancel Masses. I didn’t think anyone would show up for the Saturday evening English Mass at 5 p.m., but while I was out shoveling the walk at 4:15 a couple (I won’t give their age, but they celebrated their 52nd wedding anniversary this fall) drove in. Others followed. We filled our chapel with around 60 people. Sunday morning was light attendance with about 80 at 8 a.m. and 350 people at 10:30 Mass. Then came Spanish Mass. It was probably the first weekend in parish history that more Hispanics attended Sunday Mass than Anglos at all the Masses put together. About 400 stayed for a free Mexican dinner after Mass with dancing and live Mariachi music. Father Dennis Dempsey is pastor of St. Dominic, Northfield.

Where to write ■ E-mail: CATHOLICSPIRIT@ ARCHSPM.ORG

■ FAX: (651) 291-4460 ■ Mail: Letters to the Editor, The Catholic Spirit, 244 Dayton Ave., St. Paul, MN 55102 Material printed on the Opinion and Letters page does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the archdiocese or The Catholic Spirit.




/ This Catholic Life

Snapshots of grace: Capturing the sacred in daily life

Twenty Something Christina Capecchi

Famous photograph has become a symbol of faith, gratitude

Funny how a single picture can change everything. In the tiny town of Bovey, Minn., four years into World War I, an old man peddling foot scrapers knocked on Eric Enstrom’s door. Eric was 43, a Swedish immigrant who had bought land, opened a photography studio and raised his kids to speak perfect English. He fed the peddler and studied him. There was something striking about the man, a gentle strength in his deep wrinkles and straggly beard. Sitting before a loaf of bread and a bowl of porridge, the peddler closed his eyes and dropped his head into his folded hands. Eric flashed his bulb and pressed his accordion-like bellows camera. Poof! “Grace” was born, the picture that has been hung in kitchens and living rooms across the world, a call to gratitude, a symbol of faith that is both sturdy and hushed.

In his father’s footsteps Eric had long embraced its meaning, leading his family in grace before every meal. His third-born, Warren, tagged along on fishing trips and photo shoots of Minnesota’s Scenic State Park. Warren watched his dad shoot panoramas, turning a slow circle that seemed to sweep in every detail. When Warren departed for England to serve in World War II, he packed a 116 camera. “I took quite a few,” he said, “but not as many as I should have.” The photographer’s son can still see the bus he rode when the Nazis captured him and the machine gun fire that granted him an exit three days later. His favorite war-time snapshot — a black and white that is missing from his album but vivid in his mind — shows a uniformed Warren sitting by the entry of a small Aus-

This photograph, known as ‘Grace,’ was taken in 1918.

trian church right after the war ended. “I look pretty happy,” he said. “Oh, God, the war was over.” Warren went on to work as a construction superintendent, and throughout his life, “Grace” was never far from him. His wife embroidered the image. “She won first prize in that category at the Texas State Fair,” he boasted. Decades later, when she passed away and Warren began receiving food from Meals On Wheels, a volunteer noticed the picture in his room and was inspired to feature it in a promotional postcard.

An invitation to savor Today, Warren is 95, one of five or

six residents at Juliette Fowler Homes in Dallas who hung a “Grace” portrait in his apartment to make it feel like home. He’s given talks about the photograph and hands out a “Grace” brochure to everyone who will accept it. Promoting the picture gives him purpose. “I think that’s the most pleasant thing I’ve done,” he said, “except my wife and I went to Hawaii once.” Isn’t that how grace works? It comes as a flicker, a sprinkle of the sacred. But at any moment, any one of us can capture a shot of it, creating a permanent record, a legacy that inspires generations. Recently, we experienced our first

snow of the season. I woke and grabbed my camera, shooting the old oak that had been made new. Friends exercised the same impulse, blogging in their pajamas. Deep down we understood what Pope John Paul II wrote to artists, that beauty is “an invitation to savor life and to dream of the future.” The holidays can be dizzying, but we have the ability to press pause, to wade through scattered wrapping paper, grab a camera and process the world through its grateful lens. Christina Capecchi is a freelance writer from Inver Grove Heights. Contact her at Christina@ReadChristina. com.

Consider your faith as you set work goals for 2011

Fath in the Workplace Tom Bengtson

There are all kinds of opportunities to serve colleagues and customers

Managers everywhere set goals for the coming year. Everyone who is serious about their job should do the same for themselves. What are your goals for 2011? Don’t limit your answer to revenue, customer volume and other standard performance indicators. Consider what your work has done for your relationship with God. How might you improve that relationship through your work in the coming year? Consider these three approaches.

Solve a problem. Most people go into self-defense mode when someone asks about a problem at work. If a colleague asks “Did you leave the break room a mess?” don’t just say “no” and walk away. Answer in a manner that solves the problem, like: “Let me help you clean it up!” Usually, when someone asks who did something, they want help fix-

ing the problem more than they care about identifying the perpetrator. Think about God solving the biggest problem that ever came along — original sin. God makes a perfect world and we humans mess it up. He didn’t have to help us. It wasn’t his problem, it was ours, but God solved it by sending his only son to save us.

Do the work Do the work no one else wants to do. No matter where you work, there are unrewarding tasks that everyone avoids: taking out the trash, changing the toner in the copier, answering the phone, calling on past-due accounts, filling out forms, or cleaning up the storage room. Take on one or more such chores voluntarily; don’t wait to be asked. Do it because it needs to be done. A willingness to take on the jobs others avoid is simply a workplace

way to animate Christ’s instruction that “whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant,” (Matthew 20:26). There are all kinds of opportunities to serve colleagues and customers in most jobs; consider the opportunities and turn them into relationship builders.

Be humble. Self-promotion is a big part of some company cultures. I know one company where people put their names on everything, even other peoples’ ideas! But an organization where everyone is thinking about their own prosperity will never be as successful as a group of people working toward a common goal. That’s why the AllStar team is never as good as a World Series champion. It takes humility to engage around an organizational goal rather than a personal goal. True humility is understanding your place in the presence of God.

In no way is humility a sign of weakness or shyness. Humble people are sufficiently confident that they do not feel threatened by those around them; in fact, they gladly help those around them without worrying about their own prospects for advancement. Christ, who perfectly understood his relationship with God, was the perfect example of humility, doing everything for us without concern for himself. So go ahead and make those performance goals with respect to sales and other traditional measures; but don’t ignore your faith. Set goals at work that will help you develop your relationship with God, as well as your colleagues. Tom Bengtson, who runs a publishing company, can be contacted through his website at WWW. GEOPRINCIPLE.COM.

Christmas Posters



This Christmas I’ll be praying for . . . The Catholic Spirit asked youth in grades 1 to 12 to create Christmas posters by completing the phrase “This Christmas I’ll be praying for ...” and then drawing a picture. The 1,708 entries came from throughout the archdiocese and were judged by a panel of Catholic Spirit staff members, who chose winners in four categories: grades 1-3, grades 4-6, grades 7-9 and grades 1012. Entries were judged for artistic skill, creativity and reproducibility. Each winner receives a $50 Visa gift card. Go online to WWW.THECATHOLICSPIRIT.COM to view a slide show of the firstplace and honorable mention winners.

First place — grades 10-12 Magdalene Mahnke Forest Lake Area High School St. Peter parish, Forest Lake M. MAHNKE

First place — grades 1-3 Kayana Nikolas-Campbell 3rd grade St. Michael’s Catholic School, Prior Lake St. Michael parish, Prior Lake


First place — grades 7-9 Lili Hagg 8th grade St. Thomas More School, St. Paul St. Thomas More parish, St. Paul


First place — grades 4-6 Veronica Mahnke 5th grade St. Peter’s School, Forest Lake St. Peter parish, Forest Lake




To cancel or not to cancel Mass? That was the question CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1A question, “Did your parish cancel Masses?”: ■ St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Paul Park: “No, we did not cancel Mass and had six envelopes at 5:00. I think we should have!” — Cheri Dixon, business administrator ■ Our Lady of the Lake, Mound: “No. Absolutely not! Our pastor, Father Abraham George, lives in an adjoining rectory, so there is no reason not to have Mass. Wouldn’t it be sad if parishioners dug their cars out, driving twice the amount of time that they are used to, and then arriving to find out that there is no Mass? But I sure could see where a priest that has several parishes and needs to drive to another community would have a hard time doing that! — Rhonda Eurich, administrator ■ Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Minneapolis: “We had a wedding Saturday. Deacon Mike [Powers] and I snowshoed in to open the church for the wedding. Father Tom [Margevicius] and Deacon Mike spent hours moving snow. (Our maintenance guy was on vacation.) Many of the guests didn’t make it, but about 80 did. “We had a dish sprayer in the kitchen burst overnight Saturday, resulting in a flooded kitchen and basement and much damage to the kitchen. Without being asked, one of our parishioners (Matt Villella) who plows for others plowed the streets in front of church for Sunday

Read more responses from parishes at THECATHOLICSPIRIT.COM Mass. “Our Sunday doughnut delivery was canceled, but a family had brought in cake and fruit to celebrate a birthday. We only had 39 people at Mass, but we worshiped and even had birthday cake and coffee. God is always good and always present when we gather to worship.” — Margery E. Powers, parish business and pastoral administrator ■ St. John the Evangelist, Hopkins: “Nope, business as usual. Only 25 people at Saturday 5 p.m. Mass (normally 150), but a good 500-plus at Our Lady of Guadalupe at 11 p.m. Saturday” — Father James Liekhus, pastor ■ St. Michael, West St. Paul: “For what is believed to be the first time, our perpetual adoration chapel needed to be closed. Masses went on as scheduled.” — Linda Rivera, parish secretary ■ Immaculate Conception, Lonsdale: “We didn’t have any parish activities scheduled for the weekend, but we had a potluck supper after Mass, in celebration of our patron, Immaculate Conception, on Wednesday, Dec. 8, which was wellattended. Last year it was not because of a snowstorm. “Father Troy Przybilla did celebrate Mass at 5 p.m. on Saturday. There were 12 people there. He said that was the smallest crowd he ever had for Mass on a

weekend. The Masses on Sunday morning were not well-attended, and a baptism scheduled for Sunday was canceled. Their relatives were not able to come.” — Betty Vosejpka, secretary ■ St. Cyril, Minneapolis: “We canceled on Saturday, Dec. 11, [our] 4:30 p.m. Mass and Sunday, Dec. 12, at 7:30 a.m. and 9 a.m., but we had a great celebration for Our Lady Guadalupe at 10:30 a.m.” ■ St. Victoria, Victoria: “We did not cancel Masses at St. Victoria and, in fact, had a couple of baptisms as well. In addition, the Holy Family Catholic High School had their annual Christmas concert at our church Sunday evening.” — Mary Harvey, bulletin editor ■ St. Lawrence Church and Newman Center, Minneapolis: “No, we followed the usual schedule with surprisingly good attendance. Of course, many university students walk.” — Father Patrick Johnson, CSP, pastor/director ■ St. John the Baptist, New Brighton: “Never! No, we held all scheduled Masses, even a funeral on Saturday morning. Our maintenance crew did a fantastic job, as usual, in plowing the parking lot and shoveling the sidewalks. “I was surprised that we had over 100 people at the 4:30 p.m. Saturday Mass. Our priests live close by, so there was no problem with us getting to church!” — Father Michael Skluzacek, pastor ■ St. Michael, Kenyon: “Our faith formation director lives about two blocks from church, so she was able to get there Sunday morning and do a Communion

service. (Yes, she is commissioned.) Our priest comes from Faribault, and there was no way he could make it, as the roads were not plowed. Six people were present for the Communion service — three of which live in the country. How they got to church is still a mystery!” ■ St. Agnes, St. Paul: “The Church of St. Agnes did not cancel Masses. With the priests living on campus, nothing prevented us from offering Mass, though we did so without the benefit of music on Saturday evening, as the organist could not make it. Attendance was seven people for the Saturday anticipatory Mass (5:15 p.m.); 30 for the early 6:30 a.m. Sunday, and then picked up from there! The 8:30 and 10 were still much smaller than usual, but by the noon Mass, we had a congregation a bit larger than average. It is a challenge, with people coming from all directions. We did our best to plow out. I even operated the tractor for about 90 minutes on Saturday, and enjoyed it! “Attendance grew larger for the later Masses. People are hearty and in my judgment made real sacrifices to get here, but seemed happy to do so.” — Father John Ubel, pastor ■ St. Therese, Deephaven: “We did not cancel Mass. We operate under the guidance that even if one person would show for Mass — and there will always be someone in their 90s in a walker who will show up — we should have Mass for them.” — Edward “Ed” Smith, parish business administrator

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“The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home.” — Matthew 1:20

The Lesson Plan 14A

The Catholic Spirit

Reflections on faith and spirituality

DECEMBER 16, 2010

Joseph exemplifies acceptance of God’s will in our lives


he account of the birth of Jesus from the Gospel of Matthew appears this fourth Sunday of Advent. We hear an angel speaking to Joseph telling him to not be afraid to take Mary as his wife, for she has conceived her child through the power of the Holy Spirit. The angel reveals to Joseph God’s plan to save his people from their sins through the saving work of the child who is to be born and who will fulfill the prophecy of Isaiah. When Joseph awakes, he does what the angel has commanded him to do and becomes the guardian of the Son of God and the Blessed Mother. The Gospel says that Joseph was a righteous man, Deacon meaning that he was a man whose Anthony life was pleasing to God, and we see O’Neill this reflected in his actions. In St. Joseph, we find a wonderful example of the kind of faith and trust in God to which we are called. What fear and trepidation he must have felt at being asked to play such an important part in God’s plan of salvation for the world. Yet, the angel said

Sunday Scriptures

Readings Sunday, Dec. 19 Fourth Sunday of Advent ■ Isaiah 7:10-14 ■ Romans 1:1-7 ■ Matthew 1:18-24

Reflection Read Matthew 1:18-24 and consider Joseph’s humble response to God’s plan for his life. What has God challenged you to do?

to Joseph what was also said to Mary: “Do not be afraid.” He went forward, accepting his great vocation.

Called to a noble task When God calls a person to a great and noble task, he always provides the strength and grace needed to accomplish it. We are all called to a great and noble task: to be part of God’s plan of salvation for the world. We do this first by living lives truly redeemed by the Savior. We are also called to take the great news of salvation to a world in desperate need of the saving power of Christ. Unfortunately, there are many things in life that lead

us to anxiety and fear. We have worries about ourselves, our futures, our families, our careers . . . the list goes on. Just as God said to Joseph through the angel, so he says to us, “Do not be afraid.” When our eyes are fixed intently on the Lord, we can be confident that he holds our lives in the palm of his hand and that he will lead us. Pope Benedict, in a reflection on St. Joseph, suggests that the days leading up to Christmas are an ideal time to engage in “a sort of spiritual conversation with St. Joseph because he helps us to live to the full this great mystery of faith.” Pope John Paul II’s apostolic exhortation “Redemptoris Custos” reflects on the “silence of St. Joseph,” a silence permeated by contemplation of the mystery of God, in an attitude of total availability to his divine wishes. As we enter this final week before celebrating the great feast of Christmas, may the “silence” of St. Joseph be our guide and inspiration so that, like him, we might be more docile to the will of God in our lives. Deacon Anthony O’Neill is in formation for the priesthood at the St. Paul Seminary. His home parish is St. Mark in St. Paul and his teaching parish is St. Paul in Ham Lake.

Daily Scriptures Sunday, Dec. 19 Fourth Sunday of Advent Isaiah 7:10-14 Romans 1:1-7 Matthew 1:18-24 “When Joseph awoke, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took his wife into his home.” — Matthew 1:24 Joseph refused to publicly denounce Mary, despite her seeming betrayal, and chose, instead, the kind and reasonable solution of a quiet divorce. In the eyes of human beings, his decision was rooted in greater integrity and more kindness than we might imagine ourselves displaying in a similar situation. Yet, God called this upright man to enter even more fully into the mystery of faith, and take Mary as his wife. We, too, might be called beyond our understanding of mercy and justice as we follow the God of surprises.

Malachi 3:1-4, 23-24 Luke 1:57-66 What might you have to surrender in order to hear the Holy Spirit’s word to you? Friday, Dec. 24 2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8b-12, 14a, 16 Luke 1:67-79 How has the experience of knowing you are forgiven changed you? Saturday, Dec. 25 Christmas Holy Day of Obligation Isaiah 52:7-10 Hebrews 1:1-6 John 1:1-18 Christ is born in us when we turn away from having the right answers and toward living in faith, hope and love.

Wednesday, Dec. 22 1 Samuel 1:24-28 Luke 1:46-56 Notice what you most hunger for today.

Sunday, Dec. 26 Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph Sirach 3:2-7, 12-14 Colossians 3:12-21 Matthew 2:13-15, 19-23 “Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him.” — Matthew 2:13 We all have our personal “Herods:” those destructive forces within and around us that seek to do us harm. Sometimes, they appear to be good and yet, as they play out over the course of our lives, they prove very destructive. I knew a woman who tried for 30 years to win God’s favor by doing everything perfect. Of course, that is an impossibility, so she grew more rigid and unforgiving, having never experienced God’s love as something freely given, not earned. May we protect the life of Christ within us by entrusting everything to God’s love, including our imperfections.

Thursday, Dec. 23 John of Kanty, priest

Monday, Dec. 27 John, apostle and evangelist

Monday, Dec. 20 Isaiah 7:10-14 Luke 1:26-38 A willingness to be surprised is essential if we are to remain open and receptive to our deepest call. Tuesday, Dec. 21 Peter Canisius, priest and doctor of the church Songs 2:8-14 Luke 1:39-45 Faith empowers us to wait in the present moment without demanding to know the future.

1 John 1:1-4 John 20:1a, 2-8 How do you respond to situations that challenge your perceptions? Tuesday, Dec. 28 Holy Innocents, martyrs 1 John 1:5 — 2:2 Matthew 2:13-18 Notice if you ever use anger to control a situation or a person. Wednesday, Dec. 29 Fifth day in the octave of Christmas 1 John 2:3-11 Luke 2:22-35 Are you living more in faith, hope and love rather than fear? Thursday, Dec. 30 Sixth day in the octave of Christmas 1 John 2:12-17 Luke 2:36-40 The ability to recognize how God continues to enter the world does not rely on a position or role but on the condition of our hearts. Friday, Dec. 31 Seventh day in the octave of Christmas 1 John 2:18-21 John 1:1-18 During the last year, when have you been most aware that Christ dwells within you? Saturday, Jan. 1 Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God Numbers 6:22-27 Galatians 4:4-7 Luke 2:16-21 Remember that God works through those we might least expect. Sunday, Jan. 2 Epiphany of the Lord Isaiah 60:1-6 Ephesians 3:2-3a, 5-6

Matthew 2:1-12 “We saw his star at its rising and have come to do him homage.” — Matthew 2:2 The Magi possessed astronomical and astrological knowledge and were often associated with sorcery and magic. They were not held in high regard, but these Gentile men journeyed far to worship Jesus. Their faith-filled response stands in sharp contrast to that of Herod, who saw, not a Messiah, but a threat to his political power. Only God is able to see beyond prejudices, assumptions and pretenses into the hearts and intentions of all. Monday, Jan. 3 Most Holy Name of Jesus 1 John 3:22 — 4:6 Matthew 4:12-17, 23-25 The end of one phase of life is an opportunity to respond more fully to our deepest call. Tuesday, Jan. 4 Elizabeth Ann Seton, religious 1 John 4:7-10 Mark 6:34-44 The Holy Spirit inspires us to acts of compassion we thought impossible. Wednesday, Jan. 5 John Neumann, bishop 1 John 4:11-18 Mark 6:45-52 When we are preoccupied with anxiety, we cannot recognize God’s presence within and around us. Thursday, Jan. 6 André Bessette, religious 1 John 4:19 — 5:4 Luke 4:14-22a Pray for a deeper awareness of the power of God’s goodness within you. PLEASE TURN TO SCRIPTURES ON PAGE 15A

The Lesson Plan


G.K. Chesterton’s take on Santa Claus revisited Some of you have asked me to reproduce a column first printed several Christmases ago. A mother wrote about some friends who Q do not want their children to “believe in Santa Claus.” They intend to tell the children the myth was made up so that stores could do more business at Christmastime. The mother thought her friends were missing something important, but she wasn’t sure how to tell them. She asked what I thought.

Question Corner Father John Dietzen

I, too, think her friends are missing A something very big. It’s always risky to analyze fantasies, but maybe it’s worth try-

On Christmas morning, Chesterton remembered, his stockings were filled with things he had not worked for, or made, or even been good for

ing for a moment. Fantasies, perhaps especially for children but also for adults, are critical ways of entering a world, a real world, but one that is ordinarily closed to us in everyday human language and events. They are doors to wonder and awe, a way of touching “something” otherwise incomprehensible. Santa Claus, I believe, is like that. No one has expressed this truth more movingly and accurately, in my opinion, than the great British Catholic author G.K. Chesterton, in an essay years ago in The Tablet of London. On Christmas morning, he remembered, his stockings were filled with things he had not worked for, or made, or even been good for. The only explanation people had was that a being called Santa Claus was somehow kindly disposed toward him. “We believed,” he wrote, that a certain benevolent person “did give us those toys for nothing. And . . . I believe it still. I have merely extended the idea. “Then I only wondered who put the toys in the

stocking; now I wonder who put the stocking by the bed, and the bed in the room, and the room in the house, and the house on the planet, and the great planet in the void. “Once, I only thanked Santa Claus for a few dollars and crackers. Now, I thank him for stars and street faces, and wine and the great sea. “Once I thought it delightful and astonishing to find a present so big that it only went halfway into the stocking. Now, I am delighted and astonished every morning to find a present so big that it takes two stockings to hold it, and then leaves a great deal outside; it is the large and preposterous present of myself, as to the origin of which I can offer no suggestion except that Santa Claus gave it to me in a fit of peculiarly fantastic goodwill.” Are not parents of faith blessed, countless times over, to have for their children (and for themselves!) such a fantastic and playful bridge to infinite, unconditionally loving “Goodness,” the Goodness that dreamed up the Christmas event in the first place? Call Santa Claus a myth or what you will, but in his name, parents — and all of us who give gifts at this special time of the year — are putting one another in deeper touch with the “peculiarly fantastic goodwill,” which is the ultimate source of it all. Plus, it’s fun! I hope your friends reconsider. Father John Dietzen writes the Question Corner column for Catholic News Service. Questions may be sent to: Father John Dietzen, Box 3315, Peoria, IL 61612 or e-mail JJDIETZEN@AOL.COM.

downtown Minneapolis / 8th St. and 2nd Ave. So. 612-332-7471 / Free parking in Energy Center Ramp The only skyway-accessible church in downtown

Celebrating the Birth of Christ in the Heart of the City CHRISTMAS MASS SCHEDULE

Christmas Eve, Friday, December 24 5:00 PM (4:30 pm prelude): Contemporary Choir & Music Ensemble 7:30 PM (7:15 pm prelude): Cantor MIDNIGHT (11:30 pm prelude): St. Olaf Parish Choir

Christmas Day, Saturday, December 25 8:00 AM: Cantor 10:00 AM (9:45 am prelude): St. Olaf Parish Choir 12:00 NOON (11:45 am prelude): Schola of St. Olaf Parish Choir 4:00 PM (3:45 pm prelude): Contemporary Music Ensemble

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SCRIPTURES CONTINUED FROM PAGE 14A Friday, Jan. 7 Raymond of Penafort, priest 1 John 5:5-13 Luke 5:12-16 Christ comes to us as we are and not as we think we should be. Saturday, Jan. 8 1 John 5:14-21 John 3:22-30 What must diminish in you so that the Spirit might live more fully in and through you? Sunday, Jan 9 Baptism of the Lord Isaiah 42:1-4, 6-7 Acts 10:34-38 Matthew 3:13-17 “He went about doing good.” — Acts 10:38 This description of Jesus is simple, but it accurately sums up his life in a few words. His life was rooted in the knowledge that he was God’s beloved and it was from that truth that every choice flowed. Some of us have never heard deep in our hearts that we are beloved by God; others have forgotten. When that happens, fear works its way into our hearts and we go about doing harm. As a wise young friend recently said to me: “Before I say something, I always ask myself how I would feel if someone said this to me.” Spend a few minutes of quiet time today, allowing yourself to be loved by Christ so that you may share that love. The daily reflections are written by Terri Mifek, a member of St. Edward in Bloomington and a certified spiritual director at the Franciscan Retreat House in Prior Lake.


The Lesson Plan


Fourth Sunday of Advent begins end of waiting Advent Week 4 — Dec. 19 The Catholic Spirit

Catholic News Service

The following Advent wreath prayers for the fourth week of Advent are intended to help busy households make Advent a prayerful time during the rush of Christmas preparations. The language is fairly simple, to be used by groups of adults or adults with children, and options are noted to allow for participation by other members of the household.

■ Light all four candles on the Advent wreath.

Leader: Way back in the time of the prophet Isaiah, people were nervous and afraid, and God reassured them that he would not abandon them by giving a sign: a virgin giving birth to a son whose name shall mean “With us is God.” The evangelist Paul greets the Romans by explaining who he is and why he has come — to spread the teachings of that child to whom the virgin gave birth — so that they too will be

holy and enjoy salvation. Matthew’s Gospel, then, is like a flashback in a movie: Here’s how it all came about folks. Listen, because it’s the greatest story ever told. Closing prayer:

■ Holy Spirit, guide the choices we make as Christmas nears. Through all we say and do, let us be evangelists who live and model the gospel way of life that Jesus taught when he walked this earth.

(Leader may read all, or others in the household may each read a segment.)

■ Father in heaven, we offer thanks to you for the sign that Christmas is to the world — a sign that God is with us all our days, in every age and time.

■ Dear God, help us always to remember the reason that we wait, each year, in great anticipation for Christmas — not for presents but for the greatest gift of all, your Son.

■ Come Lord Jesus. Through our Advent prayer, our lives and our hearts are prepared to welcome you. Be with us, for we are your people, and you are our God.

Zechariah and Elizabeth slip into Advent fashionably late Which character am I more like? Which one should I be like? Zechariah and Mary present us with an opportunity to examine ourselves. Do I doubt? Do I resist God and God’s plan, or am I steadfast in faith? Am I open and eager to do God’s will?

By Father Michael Van Sloun For The Catholic Spirit

Biblical characters that help us prepare for Christmas. Zechariah and Elizabeth are two key figures in the first chapter of Luke’s infancy narrative (Luke 1:52:52), and they play prominent roles in the Gospel readings for the weekday Masses immediately before Christmas. The Dec. 19 Gospel is the announcement by Gabriel to Zechariah of the birth of John the Baptist (Luke 1:5-25), Dec. 21 is Mary’s Visitation to Elizabeth (Luke 1:3945), Dec. 23 is the birth of the Baptist (Luke 1:57-66), and Dec. 24 is Zechariah’s canticle (Luke 1:67-79). The Visitation is also the Gospel for the Fourth Sunday of Advent in Year C. Two annunciations, two very different responses. The archangel Gabriel announced the birth of John the Baptist to Zechariah and the birth of Jesus to Mary. Both asked, “How can this be?” but the mindset behind their questions was different. Zechariah did not believe Gabriel’s words and objected that he was an old man and that his wife was advanced in years (Luke 1:18,20). Mary trusted, despite her confusion, and replied, “May it be done to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38). The stories of these two responses are placed side-by-side to compare

In keeping Mary free from sin, God showed how his grace and mercy are greater and more powerful than sin and evil, Pope Benedict XVI said. “ U n f o r t u n a t e l y, every day we experience evil that manifests itself in many ways in interactions and events, but it has its roots in the human heart — a wounded, sick heart that is incapable of healing by itself,” he said before praying the Angelus Dec. 8, the feast of the Immaculate Conception. The mystery of the Immaculate Conception is a source of “hope and comfort,” the pope told pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the feast, a major public holiday in Italy. “Amid life’s trials and especially its contradictions, which people experience both inside themselves and all around them, Mary, the mother of Christ, tells us that grace is greater than sin, that God’s mercy is more powerful than evil and that God knows how to transform it into good,” he said.

From the Vatican

Leader: It’s almost Christmas! One more time we gather to pray so that we can be better prepared to welcome the Christ Child into the world. This fourth week of Advent marks the beginning of the end of our waiting — the gift we’ve been longing for is almost here.

■ Read aloud: Isaiah 7:10-14; Romans 1:1-7; Matthew 1:18-24. (Leader may read all, or others in the household may each proclaim a reading.)

Pope: God’s grace, mercy are more powerful than evil

Father Michael VanSloun

Zechariah names his newborn son from St. John the Baptist in Savage.

the depth of faith and the quality of response to a divine proclamation. Zechariah doubted and resisted. Mary trusted and agreed. God was pleased with Mary’s faith, but Zechariah was struck speechless. Pause to examine. Luke often presents pairs of characters such as Mary and Martha or the repentant criminal and the abusive criminal to get us thinking.

Two conceptions, two very different miracles. Elizabeth was old and barren, Mary was young and fertile. It is an incredible miracle for someone beyond their child-bearing years to conceive by natural means, but it is an even greater miracle for a virgin to conceive by the power of the Holy Spirit. The stories of the two conceptions are told side-by-side as a study in contrast intended to show their relative importance. Elizabeth’s conception was absolutely remarkable, but Mary’s conception was the greatest of all. Pause to ponder. The conceptions and births of Jesus and John the Baptist were miracles. Both are mysteries and matters of faith. It is beneficial to take time and meditate on the miraculous nature of these events. Our prayer will lead us to a deeper appreciation of these awesome mysteries and move us to a more profound spiritual celebration of Christmas. Father Michael Van Sloun is pastor of St. Stephen in Anoka.

Preparing for Christ In his English remarks, the pope prayed that through Mary, “our hearts and minds might be kept free from sin, so that like Mary we would be spiritually prepared to welcome Christ.” “Let us turn to her, the immaculate one, who brought Christ to us, and ask her now to bring us to him,” he said. Later that afternoon, Pope Benedict continued the feast day celebrations by making an afternoon visit to the heart of Rome’s tourist and shopping district to pay homage to Mary at a statue erected near the Spanish Steps. The pope blessed a large basket of white roses grown in the Vatican gardens, which were then set at the foot of a column topped by a statue of Mary. The statue commemorates Pope Pius IX’s proclamation in 1854 that Mary, by special divine favor, was without sin from the moment she was conceived. He told the crowds gathered for the event that Mary tells everyone that “we are called to open ourselves to the action of the Holy Spirit so as to be able to reach our final destination, to be immaculate, fully and definitively free from evil.” Mary looks upon everyone with love and is an advocate on everyone’s behalf, he said. “Even if everyone spoke badly of us, she, the mother, would speak well, because her immaculate heart is in harmony with God’s mercy,” he said. Mary looks upon everybody just as God looked upon her: as “chosen and precious” in the eyes of God even though as a young girl, she seemed insignificant to the rest of the world, he said. The pope thanked Mary for watching over everyone and prayed she would give people the strength to “reject every form of evil and to choose the good, even when it comes at a high price and means going against the current.”

“Many people mistake our work for our vocation. Our vocation is the love of Jesus.” Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Arts & Culture DECEMBER 16, 2010

Exploring our church and our world

The Catholic Spirit


Documentary ‘The Calling’ explores paths to ministry Despite their diversity in other respects, most of the world’s major religions rely on the leadership of dedicated individuals who feel called by God to serve their community as members of the clergy. The often challenging process of academic education and John Mulderig personal formation involved in responding to such a vocation is the focus of the four-hour documentary “The Calling.” Directed by Daniel Alpert — and presented as part of the series “Independent Lens,” hosted by America Ferrera — the film airs on PBS stations in two parts, Monday, Dec. 20, and Tuesday, Dec. 21, 8-10 p.m. central time each night (check local listings to confirm dates and times).

TV Review

Wide range of subjects With a broad scope that takes in the struggles of seven individuals, including Muslims, Jews, Protestants and one candidate for the Catholic priesthood, the narrative feels somewhat diffuse at the start. But viewers willing to stay the course will get to know — and likely connect with — the generally appealing subjects profiled as they grapple with an array of problems. Bilal Ansari, a Muslim chaplain in Connecticut’s prison system, for instance, confronts anti-Muslim sentiments — and actions — in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. Shmuly Yanklowitz, a New York rabbinical student, forcefully advocates for

Father Steven Gamez receives congratulations on his ordination. Photo courtesy of The Kindling Group

greater social responsibility in the kosher food industry after an Immigration and Customs Enforcement raid that led to accusations of abusive practices by one of

that sector’s leading companies. The Rev. Jeneen Robinson, a newly ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and Islamic

New Year’s Eve retreat to be time of hope, prayer The Benedictine Center is offering an overnight retreat to help people welcome the new year in a place of silence and peace. The retreat, “Crossing the Threshold,” will be held from 4 p.m. Dec. 31 to 10 a.m. Jan. 1. The $95 cost includes lodging and meals. The retreat will be led by Benedictine sisters and spiritual directors Carol Rennie and Virginia Matter.

Opportunity to reflect Participants will explore the prophet

Ezekiel’s description of “the valley of dry bones” and see how this bleak image promises hope as retreat-goers experience their own personal valleys. Participants will also join the monastic community in experiencing a time of prayer, reflection, conversation and silence. To register online, visit WWW.STPAULS MONASTERY.ORG and follow the link to the Benedictine Center. For more information, call (651) 7777251 or e-mail: BENEDICTINECENTER@ STPAULSMONASTERY.ORG.

scholar Tahera Ahmad both wrestle with the traditional limits on the role of women in their respective faiths. Rob Pene, a Samoan-born theology student weighing his future as a Presbyterian minister, faces not only the demands of his far-off family and tribe — by custom, he should inherit his father’s role as a chieftain — but, more fundamentally, his growing doubts about his faith. Father Steven Gamez, first encountered on the morning of his ordination as a transitional deacon at San Antonio’s San Fernando Cathedral, ably and engagingly represents youthful priesthood. Avowing his desire to be among the vast majority of good priests whose work for others generally goes unheralded in the media, he acknowledges the sacrifice involved in committing himself to celibacy. At a party following his priestly ordination, however, he memorably concludes: “I love women, but I love God more.”

Parents cautioned References to sexuality — and especially a scene in which Father Gamez counsels the family of a young man suspected of having molested his sister — restrict the appropriate audience for this illuminative study of the varied paths to ministry (TV-PG — parental guidance suggested). Mulderig is on the staff of Catholic News Service. More reviews are available online at WWW.USCCB.ORG/MOVIES.

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Dining out Fish fry at Knights of Columbus Hall, Bloomington — Dec. 17, 24 and 31: 5 to 9 p.m. at 1114 American Blvd. Cost is $10.95. Call (952) 888-1492 for reservations. KC pancake breakfast with Santa at Applebee’s, Eagan — Dec. 18: 8 to 10 a.m. at 1335 Towne Centre Drive. Cost is $5. Children under 4 are free. Brunch with Santa at St. Mary, St. Paul — Dec. 19: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 261 Eighth St. E. Waffles, pancakes, eggs and more are on the menu. Pancake breakfast at Immaculate Conception, Columbia Heights — Dec. 19: 8:30 to 11:45 a.m. at 4030 Jackson St. N.E. Features sausage, eggs, pancakes and more. Free will offering. KC Chicken and rib dinner at Knights of Columbus Hall, Bloomington — Dec. 22 and 29: 5 to 9 p.m. at 1114 American Blvd. Cost is $12. Call (952) 888-1492 for reservations. Free Christmas Eve dinner at Sacred Heart Rush City — Dec. 24: 6:30 p.m. at 425 Field. Ave. Please RSVP to (320) 358-4370. Father-son breakfast at St. Victoria, Victoria — Jan. 8: 8 a.m. at 8228 Victoria Drive. Speaker is Jon Melander, a coach at Holy Family High School. Cost is $10. For information, call (952) 443-2661. Spaghetti dinner for vocations at Epiphany, Coon Rapids — Jan. 8: 4:30 to 8 p.m. at 11001 Hanson Blvd. Spaghetti, salad, bread and more. Take-out available. Cost is $6 for adults, $5 for children and seniors. Children under 5 are free.

Parish events Festival of Lessons and Carols with Father Michael Joncas at St. Bartholomew, Wayzata — Dec. 17: 7 p.m. at 630 E. Wayzata Blvd. For information, visit WWW.ST-BARTS.ORG. Festival of Carols at the Cathedral of St. Paul, St. Paul — Dec. 19: 3 p.m. at 239 Selby Ave. Features the Cathedral choir and the Cecilia choir. Free will offering. Annual Christmas sing-a-long at St. Bridget of Sweden, Lindstrom — Dec. 19: 6:30 p.m. at 13060 Lake Blvd. Free family event featuring pianist Mike Hubbard. For information, call (651) 257-2474. ‘Our Gift of Song’ at the Basilica of St. Mary, Minneapolis — Dec. 19: 2 p.m. at 88 N. 17th St. An afternoon of storytelling and music. For information, visit WWW.MARY.ORG. Christmas with Cantus concert at St. Bartholomew, Wayzata — Dec. 21: 7:30 p.m. at 630 E. Wayzata Blvd. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children and students. For information, visit WWW.CANTUSONLINE.ORG. Festival of Carols at the Cathedral of St. Paul, St. Paul — Dec. 24: 10:45 p.m. at 239 Selby Ave. Features the Cathedral choir and the Cecilia choir. Free will offering. Employment Ministry: Resumé 101

ing Advent: 8:30 p.m. at 51 W. Seventh St. A half-hour ecumenical service sung by the Minnesota Compline Choir. For information about the choir, visit WWW.MINNESOTACOMPLINE.ORG.

New St. Thomas gym to host Catholic Spirit basketball tourney

Knights of Columbus traveling rosary at St. John, St. Paul — Dec. 19: 2 p.m. at 977 Fifth St. E.

Those who have heard about the new gym at the University of St. Thomas and are interested in taking a look can do so right after Christmas. And, in the process, visitors can take in some highquality boys high school basketball as well. The annual Catholic Spirit Christmas Basketball Tournament is Dec. 28, 29 and 30 at the University of St. Thomas, and features both Catholic and public school teams. Last year’s champion, Cretin-Derham Hall, is back to defend its title. Other schools in the field are Totino-Grace, St. Agnes, Hill-Murray, Holy Angels, St. Paul Central, Wayzata and Minneapolis Southwest. The following are first-round games taking place Dec. 28: TotinoGrace vs. St. Agnes (3 p.m.), St. Paul Central vs. Wayzata (4:45 p.m.), Hill-Murray vs. Holy Angels (6:30 p.m.) and Cretin-Derham Hall vs. Minneapolis Southwest (8:15 p.m.). Second-round games take place the next day (Dec. 29). Losers of the first two games will play each other at 3 p.m., with losers of the last two games playing at 4:45. At 6:30 p.m. the winners of the first two games play, while the winners of the last two games play at 8:15. On the third and final day of the tournament (Dec. 30), the seventhplace game is at 3 p.m., the fifth-place game is at 4:45, the third-place game is at 6:30 and the championship game is at 8:15. A championship trophy will be presented to the winning team at the end of the championship game. — The Catholic Spirit

Cardinal Burke to speak in Stillwater Cardinal Raymond Burke will be the guest speaker at a fundraising dinner sponsored by the Stillwater Knights of Columbus Jan. 3 at St. Michael Church. Cardinal Burke, former Archbishop of St. Louis and currently a member of the Vatican’s Congregation for Bishops and Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, will speak on the importance of Catholic education. Mass with Cardinal Burke will begin at 5:30 p.m. followed by dinner and talk. Tickets are $200 each or reserve a table of 8 for $1,400. For more information or to register online visit WWW.STCROIXCATHOLIC.COM. The event is a fundraiser for the tuition assistance CARDINAL BURKE funds for St. Croix Catholic School and St. Croix Catholic Faith Formation. and Cover Letter Writing Tips at the Basilica of St. Mary, Minneapolis — Jan. 11: 7 to 9 p.m. at 88 N. 17th St. Workshop is free, but registration is required. E-mail JGROVE@MARY.ORG to sign up. Cana dinner and dance at St. Peter, North St. Paul — Jan. 15: 6 to 10:30 p.m. at 2600 N. Margaret. St. Presentation by family therapist and author Jack Quesnell. For reservations call (651) 777-8304, ext. 316 or visit WWW.CHURCHOFSTPETERNSP.ORG. ‘Humane Vitae, Roe v. Wade and the Gospel of Life’ at Nativity of Our Lord, St. Paul — Jan. 26: 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Prior and Stanford avenues. Presenter is Dr. Deborah Savage. Part of the speaker series, “Male and Female, He created them: God’s

Plan for Authentic Happiness.” Basilica bingo at the Basilica of St. Mary, Minneapolis — Jan. 27: 6 to 9 p.m. at 88 N. 17th St. Food, fun, prizes and bingo. Cost is $20 in advance or $25 at the door. Visit WWW.MARY.ORG.

Prayer/ liturgies Legion of Mary prayers in front of Planned Parenthood, St. Paul — Dec. 17, 24 and 31: 3 p.m. at 1965 Ford Parkway. For information, call (651) 439-9098. Prayer at the close of the day at Assumption, St. Paul — Sundays dur-

Knights of Columbus traveling rosary at St. Bernard, St. Paul — Dec. 26: 2 p.m. at 187 W. Geranium St. Taizé prayer at St. Richard, Richfield — Jan. 7: 7:30 p.m. at 7540 Penn Ave. S. Visit WWW.STRICHARDS.COM. All night vigil with the Blessed Sacrament at Our Lady of Guadalupe, St. Paul — Jan. 7 and 8: 7 p.m. Fri. to 8 a.m. Sat. at 401 Concord St. Healing Mass at Holy Name of Jesus, Wayzata — Jan. 13: 7 p.m. at 155 County Road 24. Father Joseph Gillespie, pastor of St. Albert the Great in Minneapolis, will be the celebrant. Rosary before Mass begins at 6:30 p.m.

Singles Sunday Spirits walking group for 50plus Catholic singles — ongoing Sundays: For Catholic singles to meet and make friends. The group usually meets in St. Paul on Sunday afternoons. For information, call Judy at (763) 221-3040 or Al at (651) 482-0406. 50-plus singles pork dinner at St. Joseph, New Hope — Dec. 19: 5 p.m. at 8701 36th Ave. N. Includes social hour, dinner and Christmas sing-along with Dee Ries. Cost is $10. Call (763) 439-5940.

School events

Calendar Submissions DEADLINE: Noon Thursday, seven days before the anticipated Thursday date of publication. Recurring or ongoing events must be submitted each time they occur. LISTINGS: Accepted are brief notices of upcoming events hosted by Catholic parishes and institutions. If the Catholic connection is not clear, please emphasize it in your press release. ITEMS MUST INCLUDE the following to be considered for publication in the calendar: • Time and date of event. • Full street address of event. • Description of event. • Contact information in case of questions.

Open house at Hill-Murray School, Maplewood — Jan. 6: 7 p.m. at 2625 Larpenteur Ave. For students entering grades 7 to 12. An optional financial assistance session begins at 6:30 p.m. For information, call (651) 748-2406.


‘All School, Almost, Reunion’ at St. Peter School, North St. Paul — Feb. 5: Mass at 4 p.m. followed by a taco dinner, music, tours and more. Those who graduated before 2007 are invited. Cost is $9 in advance or $13 at the door. Call (651) 777-3091.

FAX: (651) 291-4460.

Other events Pax Christi Twin Cities winter gathering at St. Frances Cabrini, Minneapolis — Jan. 7 and 8: Soup supper Fri. at 6 p.m. followed by a program at 7 p.m. at 1500 Franklin Ave. S.E. Registration Sat. at 9:30 a.m., program with lunch from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Cost is $15 for Fri. and $25 for Sat. For information, visit WWW.PAXCHRISTIMN.ORG. Holy Name Society Apologetics conference at St. Augustine, South St. Paul — Jan. 8: 1 p.m. at 403 Third St. N. Featured speaker is Mark Shea, Catholic author and speaker. To register, visit WWW.NOMENSANCTUM.ORG.


(No attachments, please.)

MAIL: “Calendar,” The Catholic Spirit, 244 Dayton Ave., St. Paul, MN 55102.



Families acknowledge donors’ generosity CONTINUED



volunteers provided over 4,000 hours of service. Other donors to Project Christmas at Risen Christ come from the school’s staff, friends and volunteers; Holy Family High School in Victoria; Sacred Heart School in Robbinsdale; St. Bartholomew parish and school in Wayzata; St. John the Baptist in Excelsior; St. Peter in Delano; St. John the Baptist in Savage; Holy Name in Minneapolis; Children’s Hospital and Methodist Hospital, both in Minneapolis. Many donors ask to buy for families that have children who are of similar ages, so that their children can learn the joy of giving to others, Dahlman said. Donors also include gifts for parents and often take on additional families as they learn more about their struggles.

Last year, Family 21 wrote: “This is the first year I have truly needed help. I have always been active in volunteering, including Toys for Tots, Red Cross blood drives, supply drives for women and families who have been through abuse. . . . No parent wants to feel or know that they couldn’t do enough. Thank you and bless you for giving me the grace as a parent to have it all ‘be OK.’ My son was so happy with all the presents. Your kindness will never be forgotten.” If you are interested in helping with Project Christmas, contact Tessa Floersch at (612) 822-5329.

Restoring dignity “Our immigrant families are not making a choice to not learn English,” Dahlman said. But because many of the parents are working two or three lowpaying jobs, their work schedules leave little time or money to attend classes, she added. “Most parents are passionate about having their children learn to speak English.” This Christmas project gives parents the opportunity to wrap gifts for their children and “be on the giving end,” she said. In return, parents and children from Risen Christ write or draw thank you letters to the donor families. Each recipient family is identified only by a number.

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Local woman hopes granddaughter’s story will help others CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5A

Warning signs of child sex trafficking

Lauren she had been with “a bunch of pimps.” One of them wanted to be her boyfriend, she added. She said he had taken her shopping and bought her lingerie from Victoria’s Secret. Then Kayla told Lauren she was going to move in with him. At home, when Lauren blocked the door to prevent Kayla from leaving, she yanked Lauren’s hair, hurling her to the floor. Lauren raced to a neighbor’s house to call the police, who arrested Kayla for assault. “It might have saved her life,” Lauren said. Later, Lauren learned that the pimp who wanted to be Kayla’s “boyfriend” controlled a massive interstate trafficking network. Pimps often pose as a child’s “boyfriend,” building a romantic relationship to secure the child’s trust and allegiance, even after the relationship changes into one of violence, torture and abuse, according to Shared Hope International.

when they are even younger. Instructional books that teach aspiring ■ Truancy traffickers how to successfully groom a child for commercial sexual exploitation ■ Declining grades — referred to as “the game” — are widely ■ Delinquency available for purchase on the Internet. In one such book, a pimp with a crim■ Curfew violations inal record writes: “You’ll start to dress ■ Running away from home her, think for her, own her. If you and ■ Signs of violence and/or psychological trauma your victim are sexually active, slow it down. After sex, take her shopping for ■ Underage drinking or drug use one item. Hair and/or nails is fine. She’ll ■ Unaccounted for time develop a feeling of accomplishment. The shopping after a month will be ■ Unusual or secretive cell phone or computer usage replaced with cash. The love making turns into raw sex. She’ll start to crave the Look beneath the surface when a child experiences intimacy and be willing to get back into any of these indicators. Closely monitor computer usage, get to know the child’s your good graces. After you have broken friends, and beware of gifts from strangers. her spirit, she has no sense of self value. “Now pimp, put a price tag on the item Tips provided by Linda Miller, executive director of Civil Society. Civil Society is a you have manufactured,” he adds. St. Paul organization that provides legal and other services to victims of human Pimps target their victims at schools, trafficking. recreation centers, parks, churches, shopFor information, visit WWW.CIVILSOCIETYHELPS.ORG. To report a possible case of human ping malls, on the Internet — anywhere trafficking, call (651) 291-8810. All children are at risk children can be found. Often it happens To many, Kayla’s story might seem in communities where there is a lot of Lauren reported the incident to the Another time, Kayla took her dog for a extraordinary. But it’s a story that plays trust. Or, the trafficker is a family mempolice; however, no arrest was made in walk and didn’t come home for five days. out day after day in cities and suburbs ber or acquaintance of the child. the case, she said. Often it can be difficult Again, Lauren reported to police that throughout the United States. And it can “Gradually,” Lauren explained, “they for police to gather enough evidence to she was missing. Eventually, Kayla called happen to any child, regardless of sociostart teaching the children: ‘The adults in arrest “johns” because victims are unwill- to ask Lauren to pick her up on a street economic background or ethnicity, said your life are your enemies; you shouldn’t ing to cooperate in investigations. Fed- corner several miles Linda Miller, execulisten to them. This is your new family.’” eral and state laws actually make it easier from their home. tive director of Civil Traffickers train older girls — like for police to arrest prostitutes, who are Kayla had been Society. The St. Paul Jasmine, who was trafficked herself — to usually victims of sex traffickers. with a girl she met organization proWe need parents to groom younger girls. Around the time Kayla revealed that when she had been vides legal and “The girls that are doing this grooming she had been sexually assaulted, Lauren kidnapped before. other assistance to get involved. We — and it usually is girls — are trying to also discovered that she secretly had The girl’s mother, sex trafficking vicget them into this life, saying it’s a great maintained contact with Jasmine, despite another trafficker, tims, including need you to speak life,” Lauren said. having lost her cell drove Kayla around Kayla. “They work on phone privileges. to several houses, “I’ve read a lot up and say you them gradually, Kayla would sneak where she was that these girls kind of like a pedooff to a nearby com- repeatedly raped. come from bad want [sex trafficking Gradually, they phile does. And munity center to call One of the men homes and they’re they don’t just Jasmine on a pay who raped Kayla education] in your runaways,” Lauren start teaching the groom the chilphone, Lauren said. during that time is said. “This isn’t a dren; they groom school so your kids “It was like she had the father of her bad home. [Kayla] children: ‘The adults the whole commuto check in with baby, Lauren said. has had some issues nity” by presenting can learn the her.” “[Kayla] was so in her life, her in your life are your themselves in a violent after that,” mother was a drug Missing child positive light. facts. Lauren added. “She enemies; you addict, but she’s “Once you’re At age 11, Kayla had been totally been given nothing groomed, you’re began attending her reprogrammed. She shouldn’t listen to J OY FRIEDMAN but love from me. I blood in the water,” old school again. was talking to police Breaking Free wasn’t a bad parLauren said. One day she didn’t officers about the them. This is your ent.” “You’re easy prey.” come home. ‘great family’ she Despite the traunew family.’ “I went through was with.” Downward ma and abuse Kayla has experienced, the streets looking spiral Miller said she holds hope for Kayla’s for her,” Lauren Traumatic bonding future. Since October, Kayla has been Lauren decided “LAUREN” Traffickers apply a potent mix of loving said. “I just went receiving treatment at a residential center that Kayla wasn’t Grandmother of trafficking victim care alternated with violence, threats and through hell.” for girls with emotional and behavioral going to see JasSix days later, dehumanizing behavior to control vicproblems. mine anymore. She police officers found tims like Kayla. also began home schooling Kayla and Parents need to educate children about They offer a false sense of security and her at a community center. taking her to a counselor. Despite Kayla said a classmate had beaten her love to establish a “trauma bond” with the dangers of sex trafficking before it’s Lauren’s efforts, however, Kayla continup, and then taken her home, where the victims, according to Shared Hope too late, Joy Friedman of the St. Paul ued to spiral out of control. girl’s mother forced her to sell drugs and International, a nonprofit organization organization Breaking Free said at a June Lauren had no idea why her grand- have sex with strangers. Other young in Washington state that works to pre- forum on human trafficking. Friedman herself was a sex trafficking victim. daughter remained so troubled — until girls were being prostituted there too, vent sex trafficking. one day she blurted out that she had Kayla said. “We need parents to get involved,” Trauma bonds are similar to Stockholm been sexually assaulted at the house in Friedman said. “We need you to speak up After police, acting on a tip, questioned Syndrome, a psychological response the suburbs where she and Jasmine had the woman, she arranged for her daugh- where hostages become attached to the and say you want [sex trafficking educagone for the children’s prayer service. ter to leave Kayla at the community cen- perpetrators and later defend them, a tion] in your school so your kids can learn the facts that suburban life is not Kayla had believed she was attending a ter. report from the organization explains. prayer service that day, she told her One expert declared traffickers “the this shelter box. You do not get exempt Movies and television tend to portray grandmother. But as soon as the girls pimps as black men sporting flashy jewel- most brilliant child psychologists on the because you live out in the suburbs and your mom drives a Mercedes and you stepped foot into the house, Jasmine ry, driving fancy cars and hanging out on planet.” snatched Kayla’s prayer book and tossed street corners. But in reality anyone can When Kayla was seven months preg- have a wealthy background and you were it over her shoulder. nant, she disappeared again. “I just had raised right and you went to church. . . . be a pimp. Often they’re women. “Traffickers don’t care who you are,” Jasmine disappeared with an older boy “Times have changed,” said Sgt. John this horrible feeling,” Lauren said. into a bedroom. Another boy attempted Bandemer of the St. Paul Police DepartThe next day, Kayla asked Lauren to she added. “Like they say: ‘8 to 80, blind, to rape Kayla while shoving a pillow over ment. “There are way more female pimps pick her up at an apartment building. crippled or crazy, you’re still sellable. her face to muffle her screams. During the drive home, Kayla told Because all we need are your parts.’” right now than male pimps.”

“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” Mark Twain

From Age to Age A Catholic Spirit special section

DECEMBER 16, 2010

The Catholic Spirit


Wisdom to share Sacrifice. become very smart scholars . . . but none of that really matters . . . Integrity. because the single most important There are great Respect. purpose for living is to know Friendship. lessons McQueen people, to engage people, and to Happiness. uplift people.” hopes to teach Forgiveness. ■ “All true heroes have one thing These are just a smattering of the his grandson in common. They all want to do topics author Tom McQueen waxes the right thing. Heroes value the eloquently about in “Letters to through these sacredness of humanity and will Ethan: A Grandfather’s Legacy of sacrifice their lives to preserve the Life & Love.” letters — lessons life, dignity and freedom of their McQueen, a brothers and sisters.” marriage and about taking risks, family therapist ■ “One of the shocking realities for more than about choosing a in this world that will take you by 25 years, writes Bob Zyskowski surprise when you least expect it is about things life’s vocation (as just how quickly your life passes. many of us have wished we would One day you’ll be sitting in math have said to our own children or opposed to a job class looking at your watch and grandchildren. wondering when it’s going to end or a career), They’re personal stories, intimate and in the blink of an eye you’re thoughts. taking your vitamin supplement to about faith and They’re original, they’re help with that arthritis that’s been borrowed, they’re recycled from the about prayer. bothering you lately.” Internet. There are great lessons McQueen But combined into 150 some hopes to teach his grandson pages in a Seraphina Press BOB ZYSKOWSKI through these letters — lessons paperback ($14.95), they serve to about taking risks, about choosing a remind us that we who have lived life’s vocation (as opposed to a job much have much to tell and comment on, much to or a career), about faith and about prayer. add to the knowledge base of the younger generations Each and every one is worth your time to read. Each and, maybe, help them enjoy what we have enjoyed — as well as spare them from some of the grief that we’ve and every one is worth sharing — maybe with your own progeny. caused ourselves.

Book Review

For information about purchasing this book, visit the online version of this story at THECATHOLICSPIRIT.COM.

This is a book full of quotes to savor: ■ “You can read all of the books and study all of the principles of religion and behavioral science and

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From Age to Age

Bishop Piché to address senior forum in Hastings Catholic Senior Services of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis will sponsor a forum on caring for the bodies and souls of seniors from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 21, at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton parish in Hastings. Presentations will be made by Bishop Lee Piché, archdiocesan auxiliary bishop; Deacon Dan Gannon, CSS director; BISHOP PICHÉ Barbara Rode, St. Therese Home CEO; and Father James Perkl, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton pastor. Parish priests, deacons, staff, lay leadership, pastoral ministers, family caregivers and seniors are welcome and encouraged to attend the free forum. “Caring for Seniors In Body and Soul — Our Catholic Response” will include: ■ Opening prayer and welcome by

in the archdiocese by Bishop Piché. ■ Question-and-answer session. Deacon Gannon said that people often don’t know how or when to take steps to provide the next level of care for their senior loved ones. CSS will work with parishes to help answer those questions and provide connections to Catholic senior services in the region.

CATHOLIC SENIOR SERVICES Bishop Piché. ■ Introduction of the CSS mission by Deacon Gannon. ■ How to assess a loved one by Rode. ■ Spiritual growth in aging by Father Perkl. ■ A reflection on the mission to seniors

The parish is the logical connection point of seniors to services to ensure that the care of body and soul is seamless as loved ones encounter new challenges from aging, he said. A similar program will be held at 1:30 p.m. Feb. 8 at Holy Name of Jesus, Medina. For further information on this or additional CSS programs, call CSS at 1877-420-6461. To register for the Hastings forum, contact Faith Siebenaler at (651) 437-4254, ext. 232 or FSIEBENALER@SEASPARISH.ORG.

Benedictine Health System to build new ‘small house’ care model The Catholic Spirit Benedictine Health System will break ground this spring on a new model of skilled nursing care at the Cerenity Senior Care site in White Bear Lake, according to a press release from BHS. A “small house” model is to be the first in three phases of a building plan that also is to include a three-level addition to the skilled nursing facility, which is to break ground in 2012. A third phase will add three levels to the independent and assisted living facility, after phase two is completed. The small house model “changes everything about how long-term care has traditionally been provided,” said Dale Thompson, BHS president and CEO. “The elders will reside in private suites designed for privacy and comfort, with

ample community living space for a household experience.” According to BHS, the proposed small house will be a one-level, 9,000-squarefoot building with 12 to 15 private rooms and baths with a shared kitchen, dining and living room area and an enclosed outdoor area. Residents will lead their lives independently, as they would in their own homes. They may assist with cooking and household tasks and take part in a variety of activities that interest them.

Elder assistants will be trained in CPR, first aid, safe food handling, household operations and spiritual care. The certified nursing assistants and medication aides will be responible for direct care, cooking, laundry and housekeeping. Although similar residence care for assisted living and adult foster care has been available in Minnesota, the small house model will be “positioned to provide a higher level of care” because of its immediate proximity to Cerenity Senior Care at the corner of Florence Street and Third Avenue, according to BHS, which is working with the Minnesota Department of Health on the licensing process. For more information on the new small house model, visit WWW.BHS HEALTH.ORG.

Foundation’s annual report shows recovery The Catholic Spirit Elderly living independently, at-risk mothers and youth are among those who benefit from the activities of the Catholic Community Foundation in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. A cultivator and distributor of charitable assets, the foundation this year marked the 10th anniversary of its Community Priorities Fund, which targets local organizations that serve those target populations. Since its inception in 2000, the fund has granted $750,000 to more than 100 local nonprofit groups. In a jointly signed letter accompanying its recently published 2010 annual report, CCF president Marilou Eldred and vice chair Gerald D. Brennan noted that the foundation’s asset value is nearly fully recovered from the economic recession that began in October 2008. At the end of the fiscal year (June 30, 2010), CCF had $163 million in assets under management. “Our donors have responded generously to the ever-urgent needs of our community,” the letter noted, “giving 11 percent more than in 2009, and 15 percent more than in 2008.” Increased donations enabled the foundation to increase grants 11 percent. It granted $7.7 million to parishes, schools, seminaries and social service organizations locally and across the United States. Grants are made from endowments, trusts and donor-advised funds held at the foundation. To request a printed copy of the annual report, e-mail INFO@CCF-MN.ORG or call (651) 389-0878. A pdf version is available online at WWW.CCF-MN.ORG.

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Hospitals, parishioners meet family’s needs, despite tough times CONTINUED



and could cost well over $100,000, according to Kasbohm. It doesn’t end there. Mustafa needed another test that Shriners couldn’t perform, so he was referred to Gillette Children’s Hospital in St. Paul. The staff there got into the act when Kasbohm made a phone call. “I did call the CFO there and asked if he would be willing to waive the charges, and he said he would,” Kasbohm said. “The charges turned out to be $13,000. I was so touched with Gillette’s humanity in this — very nice. This wasn’t something they were expecting, nor was it really something we were expecting. So, that was very impressive to me.

“I’m very proud of our health community — not just Shriners but Mayo and Gillette — to work together to help this little boy get what he needs. It’s really been awe-inspiring to me. I continue to just feel the Holy Spirit is definitely at work.” So far, Mustafa has had surgery on the stump of his right leg to remove bone growth, and has been fitted with a prosthetic leg. After his shoulder surgery, Mustafa will have six to eight weeks of recovery before he and Shaymaa can go back to Iraq and be reunited with her husband and five other children. But the story is not over.

Doing what it takes Mustafa will need return visits to get

new prosthetics as he outgrows existing ones, plus any other type of follow-up care. And, St. Joan of Arc will be there to help. “We will continue to support this little boy,” said Braun, who, along with her husband John are sponsoring Shaymaa and Mustafa, meaning they are taking responsibility for meeting all of their needs while they’re here. “We have a long-term commitment to him because he needs to come back in a year and get his elbow fixed. “He will need prostheses every year or two. You can’t give him a prosthesis and say, ‘Tough, we’re done with you now.’ Morally, we have to commit ourselves to this young boy until he’s old enough [to

live independently]. . . . You can’t start something and then stop it right in the middle.” Staying involved with the two Iraqis is just fine with Father DeBruycker, who has faith his parishioners can do what it takes. “I have no qualms; whatever they need, they’ll get it from us,” he said. “I have no fear asking this parish for the money to cover [expenses].” What this all means for the little boy and his mother is simply — yet profoundly — expressed in a short piece of broken English she has learned in the classes she has taken since coming here: “I wish me and my family here in Minnesota. It’s good for Mustafa.”

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“They followed me for over five years. There’s so much footage, I wouldn’t want to be the guy who figures what goes on the cutting-room floor.” San Antonio priest Father Steve Gamez, one of seven clergy of different faiths profiled in “The Calling,” a two-part documentary to be shown by PBS Dec. 20-21, 8-10 p.m. each night

Overheard 24A The Catholic Spirit

Quotes from this week’s newsmakers

DECEMBER 16, 2010

Third-graders raise funds for Guatemala mission Third-graders at Transfiguration Catholic School in Oakdale raised $2,137 from a second-hand sale last week to help pay for the education of children at Transfiguration’s mission parish in Guatemala. The Teacher Colleen Catholic Spirit Mosley organized the annual fundraiser 12 years ago after going on a medical mission trip to San Lucas Toliman in Guatemala.

News Notes

Top school Providence Academy in Plymouth has been selected for the 2010 National Catholic High School Honor Roll. The biannual list of the top 50 Catholic high schools in the United States is chosen by a national advisory board comprised of Catholic college presidents and scholars. Schools are chosen for their academic excellence, Catholic identity and civic education. The Honor Roll is an independent project of the Acton Institute, an international research and educational organization.

Football coach resigns Vince Conway has resigned as head coach of Hill-Murray School’s varsity football team. Conway coached at the Maplewood school for 32 years, including 13 years as head coach. Under his leadership, the

school won two Classic Suburban Conference championships. Conway was named the Conference Coach of the Year in 2003 and 2006. He will continue working at the CONWAY school as network systems administrator in the technology department. A new head coach has not yet been named.

New Eagle Scout Daniel Madden, a parishioner at St. Michael in Stillwater, has earned Boy Scouting’s highest rank, the Eagle Scout award. Only about 4 percent of all Boy Scouts attain the rank of Eagle Scout, according to Scoutmaster Matt Hudachek. The senior at Stillwater Area High School earned 27 merit badges, and for his service project planted oak trees in Stillwater’s Northland Park.

Cadet colonel named Dylan Thomas of St. Paul has been named the 103rd cadet colonel of St. Thomas Academy in Mendota Heights. At a recent ceremony, he was handed the Fleming Saber by Headmaster Thomas Mich to signify his selection as head of the Corps of

Holiday Greetings from the Minnesota Newspaper Guild Typographical Union Representing The Catholic Spirit Since 1965. MN Newspaper Guild Typographical Union 2855 Anthony Lane S, #110, St. Anthony, MN 55418 Phone: 612-789-0044 E-mail:

M AG I T R AV E L Over 25 Years of Service

Cadets. Thomas is the son of Mark Thomas and Maureen Chevalier.

Youth choir sign-up High school singers may apply now for the 2011 National Catholic Youth Choir camp and tour June 1428 at St. John’s Abbey and University in Collegeville. Catholic students entering grades 10, 11 and 12 in fall 2011 may apply at WWW.CATHOLIC YOUTHCHOIR.ORG. Applications are due before March 7. Cost is $900 and includes tour expenses. Scholarships are available.

Christmas weekend Masses With Christmas Day falling on a Saturday this year, some Catholics may wonder if attending Mass that day fulfills their Sunday obligation. The short answer is, “no,” Father John Paul Erickson, director of the archdiocesan Office of Worship, said in an e-mail response to a query by The Catholic Spirit. “Attending Mass on Christmas Day, this year, which happens to be a Saturday, does not fulfill one’s obligation to attend Mass on Sunday, any more than attending a wedding on a Saturday afternoon fulfills one’s Sunday obligation.” But the reason behind this answer, he added, requires further explanation. Read Father Erickson’s full explanation at THECATHOLIC SPIRIT.COM.

“We are the privileged generation that is going to be voting and laying a strong foundation. We need to help instill pride in being a nation and help people understand that they have a God-given right to be free.” — Bishop Eduardo Hiiboro Kussala of Tombura-Yambio, Sudan, on what will be required following a January referendum on independence for Southern Sudan, which is expected to secede from the rest of the country

“With passage in the House, we have new momentum. We need to keep pushing. Hopefully the Senate will follow the wisdom of APPLEBY the House by passing DREAM before Christmas.” — Kevin Appleby, director of migration policy for Migration and Refugee Services of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, speaking in support of the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act, which would give students who are in the country illegally the chance to go to college or join the military and legalize their status

Holy Land Pilgrimage November 5-19, 2011 Join 40 others for this trip of a lifetime that includes the highlights of Egypt, Jordan and Israel. This all-inclusive tour includes the finest hotels and local guides for $4400. Contact Fr. Tom Krieg: 715.232.4922 or MINNESOTA CATHOLIC CONFERENCE


Italy May 9-19

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April 25-May 5

English Garden Tour

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May 21-31

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Minnesota Catholic Conference (MCC) seeks an Executive Director to represent the Catholic Church of Minnesota. This is accomplished by providing leadership to the MCC, working at the direction and behest of the MCC Board of Directors and leading and managing MCC staff. The Executive Director supports the mission of the MCC which is to represent the Catholic Church of Minnesota to state and federal policy makers: this includes actively identify, formulate and implement public policy objectives that promote the common good in the state of Minnesota, and provide an accessible channel of communication between Minnesota Catholics and Church, secular, and other groups. The successful candidate must have: a minimum of a Master’s Degree; five years experience in public policy and lobbying; committed to the principles of Catholic social teaching; and be in full communion with the Catholic Church. Information as well as resumes and material should be forwarded to: William J. Yacullo Trinity Executive Partnership 2 Westbrook Corporate Center, Suite 100, Westchester, IL 60154 Phone 708.531.0100 • Fax 708.947.9075 Email:


Find out more about the charities that are serving people in the Twin Cities area

Couple has decades-long association with mission to Appalachia — 2B

Non-profits share stories of success — beginning on 3B

Return favor to your parish, the first place you turn for help — 7B

The Catholic Spirit December 16, 2010


Christmas Charity


For years, couple found Christmas among poor in Appalachia By Susan Klemond For The Catholic Spirit

Elaine Eberhard thought she had all the answers about poverty in the Appalachian Mountains of Kentucky — until she went down and saw it for herself. “I used to think ‘if they’re hungry, why don’t they plant a garden?’” said Eberhard, 79, who with her husband Bob, 80, attends St. Peter parish in North St. Paul. “We should send them some seeds and they could plant a garden.” But when the Eberhards, now-retired dairy farmers, first brought their 26-foot cattle trailer and pickup filled with food, clothing and Christmas gifts to eastern Kentucky in the early 1980s, they found out the rocky soil there wasn’t good for gardening, and the people didn’t have many economic opportunities. For about 35 years, the couple and their family were involved with the Appalachian Christmas program of the Archdiocesan Council of Catholic Women of St. Paul and Minneapolis. Their involvement included about 17 years when they, their son or grandchildren helped load and bring hundreds of items donated by local parishes to the poor in Appalachia.

End of a fruitful era When a semi-truck left the Twin Cities Nov. 16 for Kentucky — three-quarters full with this year’s donations from the archdiocese, Duluth and Brainerd — it PLEASE TURN TO KENTUCKY ON PAGE 5B

Dave Hrbacek / The Catholic Spirit

Bob and Elaine Eberhard have used their small farm in Oakdale as a local launching point for the Appalachian Christmas program of the Archdiocesan Council of Catholic Women. Each year, a semi-truck would be parked in their farm yard, and people would drop off gifts that would be loaded onto the truck and delivered to rural Kentucky. This year, because of health issues, the truck was parked at the home of Vernon and Olive Hupf of St. Pius V in Cannon Falls.

Attend daily Mass within steps of your home.

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Christmas Charity



ProLife Across America To our readers The descriptions of charities, their missions and recipients were provided by each of the agencies, which are responsible for the accuracy of the content. — The Catholic Spirit

PO Box 18669 Minneapolis, MN 55418 Phone: 1-800-366-7773 Website: PROLIFEACROSSAMERICA.ORG How has someone been helped by your organization this past year? Over the years, ProLife Across America has heard from many women and men who shared their testimonials about how one of our billboards saved a baby’s life. Some of those statements include: “I thought you should know about a young woman who changed her mind and walked out of an abortion facility. She was traveling from northern Minnesota to St. Paul for an abortion appointment. Her father confided, ‘Seeing those billboards along the way tore us up inside.’” Also: “I

used to be pro-choice until I saw your billboard. I didn’t know a baby had a heartbeat as early as 24 days. I’ll never say I’m pro-choice again.” Our overall mission is: to reach out through billboard, TV, radio and newspaper ads to people who may not be reached in any other way. Our ads create an “atmosphere of life” in a “culture of death.” ProLife Across America is an educational non-profit that is non-political and committed to bringing positive, persuasive messages offering alternatives — including adoption and post abortion assistance — to those in need. The best Christmas gift readers could provide our organization is: financial support.

Cerenity Senior Care 200 Earl St. St. Paul, MN 55106 Phone: (651) 793-2110 Website: WWW.CERENITYSENIORCARE.ORG How has someone been helped by your organization this past year? We asked some of our residents and their families to share their experiences. This is what they said: “I have lived in an apartment at Marian Center for three years. I am very pleased. I have a nice apartment, and the staff is very helpful. When I need something fixed or done, they come right away.” “The nursing assistants that help us are like our children.”

— Mary — Elaine

“The staff here at Marian is like a second family for my father. We never hear, ‘No, that can’t be done,’ or ‘That just isn’t possible here.’ We always hear, ‘We will make that happen for you.’ They accommodate his and our every need.”

— Kathy

“We were very lucky to have dad at DayAway. It was a comfort to me that you were always kind to him. You always included him and he was happy.”

— Kathy

Our overall mission is: to nurture the physical and spiritual needs of our residents.

Cradle of Hope

Cradle of Hope’s Mission is to encourage life by providing financial aid to women and babies in crisis, especially those women who might not choose life because of economic pressures.

“It is Christmas every time you let God love others through you.” — Mother Teresa

Send your Christmas contribution to: Cradle of Hope Suite 241 1935 W. County Rd. B2 Roseville, MN 55113 Donate On-Line at


Christmas Charity


Center for Mission

Saint Therese Foundation

328 West Kellogg Blvd.

8000 Bass Lake Road

St. Paul, MN 55102

New Hope, MN 55428

Phone: (651) 222-6556

Phone: (763) 531-5459





How has someone

How has someone been

been helped by your

helped by your organization

organization this past

this past year?

year? Annastancia, a

Saint Therese serves seniors of all financial backgrounds.

parishioner at St.

In fact, over 60 percent of

Alphonsus in Brooklyn Center, felt called by God to share her faith by returning to her

individuals currently

birth place of Gweru, Zimbabwe. She came to the Center for Mission for guidance

receiving services in the

and support. Through her own efforts and assistance from the Center for Mission,

Saint Therese of New

Annastancia organized a drive to collect clothing, liturgical supplies and religious

Hope Care Center are on

books, and delivered them last fall. The local church in Gweru, ignited with

financial assistance. Charitable gifts to Saint Therese help fill the gap left after

enthusiasm and hope, organized an outreach of prayer, community and

government funding drops off, raising critical dollars for pastoral care, daily Mass,

evangelization to witness to faith in their area. Annastancia formed bridges of

weekly ecumenical services, beautiful landscaping, gardens and so much more.

sharing faith and resources from this archdiocese to her parish in Zimbabwe. Our overall mission is: to serve seniors of all faiths and focus on the well-being of Our overall mission is: to transform the lives of the people and parishes of our

each individual. We look forward to the opportunity to better serve those with

archdiocese and the lives of our brothers and sisters in global mission churches

chronic or terminal illness at our newest community in Shoreview — Saint Therese at

through the sharing of faith, culture and resources facilitated through local

St. Odilia. It is a place where individuals can receive 24-hour nursing care in a

missionary efforts including education, mission partnerships, immersion trips and by

beautiful residential house on the St. Odilia campus.

encouraging missionary vocations. The best Christmas gift readers could provide our organization is: with donations of The best Christmas gift readers could provide our organization is: to help support our efforts at bridging people and parishes of our archdiocese with the global

lap blankets for the individuals with chronic or terminal illness living at Saint Therese at St. Odilia.

mission of Jesus.

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MainStreet Lodge Assisted living 612.362.2450 RiverVillage East Assisted living, memory care 612.605.2500 Catholic Eldercare on Main Skilled nursing care, memory care 612.379.1370

Christmas Charity


Kentucky homes spark vivid memories CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2B marked the first year in many that the Eberhards had not received and loaded the collection at their Oakdale farm. The collection for two Kentucky towns began in the early 1970s when Father Terence Hoppenjans, then stationed in Beattyville, Ky., appealed to a priest friend in Minnesota for assistance, hoping that helping families at Christmas might benefit his evangelization efforts, Elaine said. Father “Hop,” as he is called, sent a list with each family’s needs to Minnesota. Soon the ACCW began administering the program at parishes, and Elaine helped collect the items for her thenparish, Transfiguration in Oakdale. In 1975, the Eberhards’ son Bob offered to drive down and help deliver the Christmas gifts. After that, the entire family loaded vehicles, brought the goods down and helped distribute them, and made items for the poor, she said. About 60 archdiocesan parishes now serve roughly 400 families, Elaine said. Rather than going to individual families, the Twin Cities’ collection is now sent to two free stores, where recipients can shop.

Memorable moments Elaine still has vivid memories of delivering the Christmas packages in Kentucky. The families would “have their potbellied stove in their shack there and they’d have to sit around it to keep warm because the wind would just blow

You plant the seed and someday they will bloom,’ he said, ‘hopefully.’” Along with becoming more aware of the need, Elaine said she also came to appreciate Minnesota Catholics’ compassionate response to the poverty: One woman began making 100 quilts, while Roseville-based trucking company Terminal Transfer Inc. carried the load to Kentucky free of charge. “The goodness of people comes out and it’s just enjoyable,” she said. “Makes you have faith in the world.”

The Appalachian Region

©1996, The Center for Appalachian Studies and Services

The Appalachian Region as defined by the Appalachian Regional Commission.

through what they had for houses there,” she said, adding that some families now live in better-insulated trailer homes. She recalled a disabled boy who had to place his foot under the wheel of his wheelchair to prevent it from rolling across the slanted floor of his family’s home. Elaine said she was surprised at the boy’s gratitude for the small toy he received. “He couldn’t talk hardly at all, but he’d have a big smile on his face and tell Father that he just enjoyed that so much,” she said. Elaine said she was shocked to find such poverty in the United States. “To me it seemed hopeless; I would tell Father that,” she said. “He’d say, ‘No, nothing is ever hopeless. Keep on trying.



Abundant gifts Olive Hupf, who with her husband Vernon took over receiving and loading the donations this year, agreed with Elaine. “What we’ve been able to help with is probably just a drop in the bucket, but it’s wonderful the gifts that our people are willing to donate,” she said. Hupf, a member of St. Pius V in Cannon Falls who also manages the Appalachian donations for parishes in the southeastern area of the archdiocese, praised the Eberhards’ years of dedication to the program. “Once they got the gifts it wasn’t just the loading of the gifts. . . . They went down with their own trailers and their trucks and their son went down,” she said. “Just being able to be of assistance, helping to get it to these people. These guys, they’re dedicated people.”


Emma and

her family have a warm place to stay. Catholic Charities provides more than 400,000 nights of shelter and care to families and individuals in the Twin Cities each year. You make a difference.

Because of


Helpkeep keep our neighbors winter. Help our neighbors warm thiswarm winter.this Return the enclosed giving envelope, visit or call 612-204-8374. Visit or call 612-204-8374.

Sign up for a free eNewsletter @



Christmas Charity


Sharing and Caring Hands

Cradle of Hope

525 N. Seventh St.

1935 W. County Rd. B2, #241

Minneapolis, MN 55405

Roseville, MN 55113

Phone: (612) 338-4640

Phone: (651) 636-0637





How has someone been helped by your organization this past year? We see many heart-


How has someone been helped by your organization this past year? In a recent Wilder survey of women assisted, more than 90

wrenching situations while

percent of respondents indicated

working with people in need.

that Cradle of Hope’s assistance

For example, there was a

helped them to relieve stress, feel

homeless woman who had four

more hopeful about the future and

children and was dying from

feel more supported in their

breast cancer.

pregnancy. Here are some of their

Her mother took the three boys, but she kept the little girl named Petra with her. The staff and the sisters helped her while she was here, and she could not thank us enough. She stayed with us about one year until she died here. She was grateful to the end for our help, and we are grateful to all of you who make that help possible. Our overall mission is: to provide a compassionate response to the needs of the

comments: “I was saving money for the new baby . . . and missed work due to complications. There’s no support from the father of the baby; he left. I can still cry when I think of how helpful Cradle of Hope was at that time.” “It just relieved a lot of stress. I was on the fence about having my son, which I am so sad to say. Now, I am glad I had him. He is the light of my life.” “Lifesaver. The thought of losing my home was crushing, especially when I didn’t expect it. It was a pick-me-up when someone helped me; it helped emotionally.”

poor. This includes providing meals, clothing, showers, shelter, transportation, rental help, medical assistance, dental care, glasses, beds, school expenses and other miscellaneous needs. Mary’s Place, our transitional shelter (named in honor of the Blessed Mother), houses 92 families to help them get back on their feet after losing their housing. Currently, we are housing over 340 children and more than 120 adults. Sharing and Caring Hands provides these services with dignity, while affirming God’s love for all of his people regardless of their circumstances. Sharing and Caring Hands, founded in 1985, exists as a vehicle for you to make a

Our overall mission is: to encourage life by providing financial aid to women and babies in crisis, especially those women who might not choose life because of economic pressures. This quote from Mother Teresa is relevant at this time of year: “It is Christmas every time you let God love others through you.” Christmas — the coldest time of year in Minnesota — is a time of great need for pregnant women who come to Cradle of Hope for help. Shelter is a primary concern during these weeks, as mothers seek suitable housing for themselves and

difference in the lives of others by your financial support, volunteer time, and

their babies. Whether the need is rent, cribs or other maternity-related expenses,

donations of food, clothes and hygiene and household goods.

Cradle of Hope steps in when other sources of funding are unavailable.

The best Christmas gift readers could provide our organization is: increased

The best Christmas gift readers could provide our organization is: support of our

donations to help us handle the ever increasing number of people in need in this

financial assistance program. To donate visit our website or send your gift to Cradle

tough economic time.

of Hope at the address above.

Christmas Charity



Parishes fill a ministry need no charity group can fill By Father Paul Jarvis For The Catholic Spirit

This may sound odd, but one of the more moving ministries for me and other priests is ministering to dying parishioners, as well as family members of recently departed parishioners. People are just more present around the sacred departures of disciples. With our society’s high mobility, it has become increasingly common that the deceased person being honored often is the lone remaining parishioner within the family . . . with children and grandchildren having moved to other parts of the region, the Twin Cities or across the country. As our elders may recall, it used to be customary to list in a loved one’s obituary that his or her parish or parochial school would be the preferred recipient of memorials. But with children and grandchildren moving far away from their ancestors’ home, and, alas, many descendants leaving the faith, a strange thing is happening. A departed loved one’s parish is now considered on par with other nonprofit organizations. Just within the past six months, I experienced some survivors opting not to list the deceased’s parish in the obituary because, they said, “[their loved one] supported so many different organizations; it’s better not to list any one organization.”

Times have changed Wow. Have times ever changed. Don’t get me wrong, charitable organizations and other nonprofits are incredibly important for our society. They do so

“But no other nonprofit does more good throughout one’s life than one’s parish, and, when relevant, one’s parochial school.


much good. That’s why thousands, if not millions, actively support them already. Especially those without a parish or religious affiliation. But no other nonprofit does more good throughout one’s life than one’s parish, and, when relevant, one’s parochial school. No service organization, no medical research organization, no university is as present at the really important times in one’s life as is one’s parish: at baptisms, first Communions, confirmations, weddings, anointings, confessions, funerals and anniversaries. Every year, the parish is there for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Ash Wednesday, Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter, Ascension, Pentecost, Assumption and Immaculate Conception. And those are just particularly special highlights in one’s sacramental life. Then there are the innumerable nursing home visits, the hospital visits, the hospice visits, the home visits, even visits with family members in jail. Don’t forget the 52 Sunday eucharistic celebrations in a given year; the personal

PROLIFE Across AMERICA "The Billboard People"

counseling, marriage counseling and family counseling; and support for those struggling with addictions, for the unemployed and underemployed and for families recovering from disasters. That’s not even including the ongoing formation of children and adults in the faith.

Who is there for you? Again, no offense, but a university hockey program’s coach is not going to visit many in the hospice. The head of a civic organization is

unlikely to witness your marriage. The vice president of development for a medical research nonprofit is not staying up with you at the hospital. We are blessed with many nonprofits doing great work in The Valley and in the Twin Cities. But there is a difference between a Catholic parish and nonprofits that have a hundred or a thousand times the number of financial supporters. Christians, please tell your children and grandchildren of your love for your parish, and if you have one, your parochial school. Let them know that you would like your spiritual family remembered after you’ve fallen asleep in Christ. Include your parish not only in your estate, but in your funeral planning. There is a difference, and it’s that your parish is “family.” A Catholic parish is also the most comprehensive nonprofit anyone could ever support. Father Paul Jarvis is pastor Guardian Angels in Chaska.

Don’t Miss The Catholic Spirit Holiday Basketball Tournament

Changing hearts and saving Babies' lives! Please help us do more, Mary Ann Kuharski • “You really do save children everyday, even if you are never told. And I want to say, from the very bottom of my heart, “thank you” for saving mine.” • “My friend is pregnant and wants to place her baby for adoption but doesn’t know how to go about it. Can you help her?”

Please Donate now @ (.94¢ of every Dollar received goes to our Media Mission.) PROLIFE Across AMERICA: Educational, Non-political Tax Deductible Checks to: PROLIFE Across AMERICA PO Box 18669, Mpls, MN 55418 •We never sell or trade donor names


University of St. Thomas Anderson Athletic & Recreational Complex 2115 Summit Ave., St. Paul December 28, 29, 30 First Round Schedule: Tuesday, Dec. 28 Game 1: 3 p.m. — Totino Grace vs. St. Agnes Game 2: 4:45 p.m. — St. Paul Central vs. Wayzata Game 3: 6:30 p.m. — Hill-Murray vs. Holy Angels Game 4: 8:15 p.m. — Cretin Derham Hall vs. Minneapolis Southwest



Christmas Charity


St. Vincent de Paul

St. Katharine Drexel Church

Church of Saint Paul

9100 93rd Ave. N., Brooklyn Park Christmas Eve: 4, 6, 10 p.m. Christmas Day: 7:30, 9, 11 a.m. The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God: Saturday, Jan. 1, 9 a.m.

Ramsey, MN - 763-323-4424 Christmas Eve – 4 PM Christmas Day – 10:00 AM Masses at the Parish Center 7101 143rd Ave. NW, Suite G

1740 Bunker Lake Bvd., NE, Ham Lake Christmas Eve: 4:30, 11:30 p.m. Christmas Day: 9 a.m. May Jesus be born in your heart this Christmas filling the New Year with Peace

Our Lady of Peace

Pax Christi Catholic Community

St. Joseph 1310 Mainstreet, Hopkins — 952-935-0111 Christmas Eve: 4, 10 p.m. Christmas Day: 8:30, 10:30 a.m. New Years Day: 9 a.m. Christmas Creche Display Dec. 11-Jan. 9

Holy Cross Church 1621 University Ave. NE, Minneapolis Christmas Eve: Children’s 4, midnight (Music begins at 11:30) Christmas Day: 8, 10 a.m. (English), 11:30 a.m. (Polish)

Church of St. Peter 1250 South Shore Drive, Forest Lake Christmas Eve: 4, 5:30, 11 p.m.; Christmas Day: 9, 11 a.m. Carols begin 30 minutes before all Masses The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God December 31: 5:30 p.m. New Years Day: 9, 11 a.m.

54th St. and 12th Ave. in South Minneapolis Christmas Eve: 5, 10 p.m. Carol singing begins at 9:30 p.m. Christmas Day: 10 a.m.

Church of St. Rita 8694 80th St. S., Cottage Grove Office (651) 459-4596 Christmas Eve: 4, 6 p.m., midnight Christmas Carols begin at 11:30 p.m. Christmas Day: 8:30, 10:30 a.m. New Year’s Day: 9 a.m.

St. Anthony of Padua 813 Main St. NE, Mpls. 55413 Christmas Eve: 4 p.m. Christmas Day: 9 a.m. New Year's Eve: 4 p.m. New Year's Day: 5:30 p.m.

Transfiguration Church

Church of the Holy Spirit

6133 15th St. N., Oakdale Christmas Eve: 4, 10 p.m. Christmas Day: 8:30, 10:30 a.m. Carols one half hour before each Mass

515 S. Albert Street, St. Paul Carols at 4 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Christmas Eve Masses: 4:30, 10 p.m. Christmas Day Masses: 8:30, 10:30 a.m. Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God: December 31 at 4:30 p.m. January 1 at 8:30 a.m. For unto us a child is born, a son is given.

Church of St. Therese of Deephaven 18323 Minnetonka Blvd., Deephaven Christmas Eve: 4, 6, 10 p.m. Christmas Day: 9 a.m. New Years Day: 5 p.m. Blessings to you this Christmas Season and throughout the New Year

St. Bartholomew Catholic Faith Community

12100 Pioneer Trail, Eden Prairie Christmas Eve: 4, 6, 8, 10 p.m. Lessons and Carols: 9:30 p.m. Christmas Day: 9, 11 a.m.

Church of St. Charles Borromeo 2739 Stinson Blvd., St. Anthony (612) 781-6529 Christmas Eve: Prelude 4:30 p.m.; Vigil 5 p.m.; Midnight Mass Prelude 11:30 p.m., Mass at Midnight Christmas Day: 7:30, 9:30, 11:15 a.m.

630 E. Wayzata Blvd, Wayzata (952) 473-6601 Christmas Eve: 4, 7:30, 9:30 p.m. Christmas Day: 10:30 a.m. Please join us to celebrate this blessed and holy season!

Minneapolis Christmas Eve: 4, 6, 10 p.m. Christmas Day: 9, 11 a.m.

St. Albert the Great Church

Church of St. Stephen

Corner of E. 29th St. and 32nd Ave. S., Minneapolis (612) 724-3643 Christmas Eve: 5, 10 p.m. Christmas Day: 10 a.m. New Years Day: 10 a.m.

525 Jackson St., Anoka Christmas Eve Masses: 4, 5:30, 7: p.m. (Spanish); midnight Christmas Day Masses: 8, 9:30, 11 a.m. May this Christmas season be a special time of grace and blessing!

St. Joan of Arc

Church of Our Lady of Lourdes One Lourdes Place, Minneapolis Christmas Eve: 4, 8 p.m. Carols begin at 7:30 p.m. Christmas Day: 11 a.m. Carols begin at 10:30 a.m. Joyeux Noël et Bonne Année!

Church of St. Jerome 380 E. Roselawn Ave., Maplewood Christmas Eve Masses: 4, 10 p.m. Christmas Day Masses: 8:30, 10:30 a.m. Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, 9 a.m. O Come Let Us Adore Him

Nativity of Our Lord 324 S. Prior Ave., St. Paul Christmas Eve Masses: 4 p.m. upstairs and school auditorium, 6 p.m., midnight Christmas Day Masses: 7, 8:15, 11 a.m. God’s Blessing on you this Christmas!

St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church 920 Holley Ave., St. Paul Park Christmas Eve Masses: 4, 10 p.m. Christmas Day Mass: 9 a.m. All are welcome! Please join us!

All Saints Church 19795 Holyoke Avenue, Lakeville Christmas Eve: 4, 4:15 p.m. (Murphy Hall); 6 p.m., 12 a.m. (midnight) Christmas Day: 9, 11 a.m. Feast of the Holy Family, Sun. Dec. 26: 7:30, 9, 11 a.m.; 5:30 p.m. Solemnity of Mary: Fri., Dec. 31, 5 p.m.; Sat., Jan. 1, 9 a.m. Feast of the Epiphany: Sat., Jan. 1, 5 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 2, 7:30, 9, 11 a.m.; 5:30 p.m.

The Catholic Spirit - December 16, 2010  
The Catholic Spirit - December 16, 2010  

Includes Christmas Charity and Age to Age special sections.