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THELEAVEN.ORG | VOL. 37, NO. 38 | MAY 13, 2016



hen we asked our readers many months ago if they prayed in any unusual places, we heard back from more than a few. And so, from the highways and byways of northeast Kansas, we bring you some folks that we discovered were literally powered by prayer — and who taught us how we could be, too.




MAY 13, 2016

Bishop’s life provides many prayer opportunities


uring my confirmation homilies this past year, I have emphasized that the heart of our Catholic faith is an encounter with a person, the person of Jesus Christ. The essence of what it means to be a Catholic is a relationship, a friendship, with Jesus. Knowing what we believe and why is very important. However, Catholicism is not fundamentally knowledge about Jesus. It is, rather, k n ow i n g ARCHBISHOP Jesus, not JOSEPH F. NAUMANN s i m p l y as a historical person, but as a living person who is animating and transforming the lives of people in 2016. Without this personal relationship with the living Jesus, our dogmas and doctrines will make no sense. Catholics are called to live moral and ethical lives. However, once again, the heart of Catholicism is not our moral code. Without a friendship with Jesus that motivates and inspires us, we will not to be able to persevere in living a virtuous life. How do we develop this relationship, this friendship, with Jesus that is the essence of our Catholic faith? As with any friendship, first and foremost, we must spend time with Jesus. This means that, first and foremost, we need to be men and women of prayer. While the prayer life of each person is unique in accord with the particular circumstances of his or her life, there are elements of a vibrant life of prayer that are universal. The following are the elements of my prayer life. One of the things I enjoy about the life and ministry of a bishop is that no two days are alike. With many other aspects of my schedule fluid, I strive for consistency in my prayer life. There are certain “givens” in the prayer life of a priest. When I was ordained a transitional deacon 42 years ago, I made a commitment to pray the Liturgy of the Hours. This allows me to be united with clergy, religious and laity throughout the world in praying certain prayers throughout each day. The Liturgy of the Hours is composed of hymns, psalms, readings of Scripture, canticles from the New and Old Testaments, the Lord’s Prayer and specific intercessions. One of the graces of praying the Liturgy of the Hours is that it requires one to pray throughout the day. The Liturgy of the Hours consists of morning prayer, midday prayer, evening prayer, night prayer and the office of readings. The office of readings contains extended readings from the Old or New Testament as well as a non-scriptural reading usually taken from the writings of one of the saints. For me, the most important part of every day is offering the holy Sacrifice of the Mass. This time of year, most nights I am celebrating a confirmation Mass. During other times of the year, I am offering Mass at one of our parishes, high schools, with a religious community, or some other gathering or archdiocesan event. For instance, for three nights last week, I presided at confirmation Masses and on the other days celebrated Masses with the students of Bishop Ward High School, with the Fellowship of Catholic University Students missionaries serving in the archdiocese, with a pro-life gathering in St. Louis, with Ascension Parish in Overland Park for its 25th anniversary and with the Sisters, Servants of Mary. If I do not have a public Mass scheduled on a given day, I offer a pri-

Publication No. (ISSN0194-9799) President: Most Reverend Joseph F. Naumann

ARCHBISHOP NAUMANN May 13 Benedictine College baccalaureate Mass May 14 Benedictine College graduation and Benediction May 15 Conception Seminary graduation Archdiocesan adult confirmation — Cathedral of St. Peter, Kansas City, Kansas May 16 “Shepherd’s Voice” recording Pastoral Council vespers, dinner and meeting — Savior Pastoral Center


May 17 Envisioning Team meeting

vate Mass at the chapel in my residence. Each day, I spend one hour in prayer in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. This is easier for me to do because I have a chapel in my residence where the Eucharist is reserved. Most days, I make this Holy Hour at the beginning of the day. During my morning Holy Hour, I will usually pray the office of readings, and morning prayer. As part of the Holy Hour, I spend some time in meditation based on the biblical readings for Mass or some other spiritual reading tool. Part of the meditation is to seek to listen to what the Lord is attempting to say to me and to make a specific and concrete resolution to practice a virtue or make an act of renunciation during the day. I spend some time in praise and thanksgiving. I remember specific intentions and people for whom I have promised to pray. I also usually pray over my schedule, asking the Lord to guide me and to bless those with whom I will be sharing part of my day. In addition to praying the other portions of the Liturgy of the Hours during the day, I pray the rosary, frequently while in route to some event. I also pray over next Sunday’s readings at some point in the day and do at least 15 minutes of spiritual reading. The book I am reading at the present moment is: “Sts. Louis and Zelie Martin: The Extraordinary Parents of St. Thérèse of Lisieux” by Helene Mongin. Much of the activities of the day also provide opportunities for prayer, e.g., prayers before meetings, leading prayers for groups, praying with people throughout the day and, of course, prayers before and after meals. I end the day with night prayer. This includes an examination of conscience that begins with a remembrance of the many blessings and graces of the day followed by recalling my sins and failures. I entrust to the Lord the many challenges that the day’s events have made me more keenly aware before asking for a restful night. I recall Pope St. John XXIII’s last prayer of the day: “Lord, it is your church. I am going to bed.” The life of a bishop is good for one’s prayer life because it provides so many daily experiences that make me aware of God’s presence and my need for his help. I am constantly reminded how inadequate my own abilities are in comparison to the responsibilities I carry. This drives me to my knees and into the arms of God. The most important elements for my prayer life are: 1) thanking the Lord for the blessings of the day; 2) seeking

Retired priests meeting Confirmation for Hispanics — Blessed Sacrament, Kansas City, Kansas. May 18 Catholic Foundation of Northeast Kansas board meeting — Savior Pastoral Center May 19-20 Kansas Catholic Conference — Topeka May 20 Holy Hour with those to be ordained deacons, seminarians and families, followed by dinner — Cathedral of St. Peter, Kansas City, Kansas May 21 Transitional diaconate ordination of Michael Guastello and Daniel Coronado — Cathedral May 22 Centennial celebration — St. Leo, Horton May 23 Finance Council meeting

ARCHBISHOP KELEHER May 15 Mass — Federal prison camp May 21 Transitional diaconate ordination of Michael Guastello and Daniel Coronado — Cathedral Prison ministry Mass

his guidance with the challenges of my life; and 3) listening to God’s voice as he speaks to me through the prayerful reading of the Bible, through the events of the day and through the inspirations that the Holy Spirit places in my heart. While formal prayers are helpful, the most important part of my prayer life is prayer from the heart. A day without prayer is to the soul what a day without food or water is to the body. At this stage of my life, conversing with friends is one of the most enjoyable and life-giving experiences of any day. It is natural, then, that prayer — conversation with Jesus — is the part of my day that I find most refreshing and renewing.

Editor Reverend Mark Goldasich, stl frmark.goldasich@theleaven.org

Production Manager Todd Habiger todd.habiger@theleaven.org

Reporter Moira Cullings moira.cullings@theleaven.org

Managing Editor Anita McSorley anita.mcsorley@theleaven.org

Senior Reporter Joe Bollig joe.bollig@theleaven.org

Advertising Coordinator Beth Blankenship beth.blankenship@theleaven.org

Spending time with God in simple activities


LATHE — Sometimes, the advice our parents give to us as children sticks with us for the rest of our lives. Aggie Knapp, a member of Prince of Peace Parish in Olathe, is no stranger to this concept. “When my brothers and sisters and I were very young, my parents would often ask us to pray for others — friends, neighbors [and] relatives,” said Knapp. “So, after the request, we would continue with whatever activity we were doing, but do it while praying.” Instead of forgetting AGGIEKNAPP this practice Prince of Peace, Olathe and getting caught up in the distractions of life, Knapp has continued praying during her daily activities since her childhood. For Knapp, praying throughout the simple activities of her day is one of the best ways to spend time with God. “Praying during the course of my day has been incredibly beneficial,” she said. “It has helped me stay focused, keep things in perspective and allows me to have a never-ending conversation with God.” Knapp prays the rosary while working in the yard, cleaning, cooking and watching her grandchildren. Praying in this way is very informal, but feels much more personal, she said. “I begin with prayers of gratitude and thanksgiving,” said Knapp. Knapp then prays for her family, friends, neighbors and those who are ill and in need of comfort. “I pray for good weather and safe travels. I pray for kind words and good deeds,” she said. “I pray for peace on this earth. I pray for jobs and a good economy. “I pray that everyone knows God.” Despite the often busy nature of life, Knapp doesn’t have trouble focusing when it comes to this special time of prayer. “I will always be so grateful to my parents who gave me the gift of faith and taught me to pray,” she said. Story by Moira Cullings Photo by Lori Wood Habiger

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ARYSVILLE — For Debbie Price, gliding through nature on her bike is made even more peaceful by prayer. It all started when she and her sister Janet started to train for Bike Across Kansas several years ago. “We spent many hours at a time riding,” said Price, a member of St. Gregory Parish in Marysville. “We DEBBIEPRICE often talked St. Gregory, Marysville about our children and decided we had a lot of time to pray for them. And so, we started making the rosary part of our riding routine.” Price, who rides every day when the weather is warm enough, said that she and Janet don’t use headsets on their rides so they can be fully aware of the traffic around them.


“That led us to the rosary,” she said. “Since that first rosary,” she continued, “we have seen prayers for healthy grandbabies, college graduations, jobs and so on get answered. “I start praying immediately with the first push of the pedal now.” A ride with gorgeous scenery is peaceful, and Price said that praying in this way has drawn her closer to God. “How can you be in nature and not think about God and his blessings?” she asked. Price admits that praying on her rides is much more unconventional than praying somewhere more traditional, like in church. “In church, I can look around and see statues of faithful people, and that’s great,” she said. “But I seem to get more sidetracked in church.” “You might think it would be the other way around, but not for me,” she added.

Troubled past leads woman back to God

fered and died on the cross for us. I think that should be our number one prayer.” Knipp has an active prayer life that doesn’t only involve pain. Before she gets into her vehicle, she says an Act of Contrition. While driving, she prays the rosary. For her, it’s as automatic as breathing. But it’s the Stations of the Cross that really get her through life.


.OPEKA — Raychel LopezOwens admits that her prayer space isn’t ideal. It’s a 8-by-15 room that she’s decorated with many photos of the Virgin Mary and Jesus. A rosary hangs above her desk. It’s not much but, in prison, not much is all you have. “I feel like I’m in a chapel, honestly,” said Lopez-Owens. “I love my cell. It’s a safe place for me because I walk in and God is right there.” It wasn’t supposed to be this way. Growing up in Kansas City, Kansas, LopezOwens was the product of Catholic education. She attended RAYCHEL Our Lady of Unity School, LOPEZ-OWENS Bishop Miege Topeka Correctional Facility High School in Roeland Park, Donnelly College in Kansas City, Kansas, and the University of St. Mary in Leavenworth. “It’s very peaceful out on that open road.” She later married, had three kids and Taking the time to pray during her was a seemingly perfect mother. rides has not only been beneficial for her, “I was the mom that did everything for but for those around her as well. my kids — picking up friends, dropping “When [my sister and I] ride, I tell off friends, taking everyone to the movies. others we are going to say the rosary, My kids were involved in everything and I and they join us,” she said. was the taxi. I didn’t mind at all,” she said. Still others give Price and her sister But lurking underneath her seemingprayer requests for their journey. ly perfect life was a dark secret. Her Simply being in nature is an oasis marriage fell apart and her life as a and a sanctuary for many. It’s also single mother on the go was catchof Catholics a temporary harbor from the chaos ing up to her. pray daily of everyday life. To cope, she turned to hydrocoSource: Pew Research Center So why not use it as a place to done pills. pray? “I immediately took a liking to “Being away from the TV, radio and them,” she said. “They gave me soooo cellphone allows me to concentrate much energy and masked the pain that I better,” said Price. “My prayer life has carried around.” grown, and I encourage other riders to While her children were around, Lopezdo the same.” Owens could get by with just her pills. But her children weren’t always around. Story by Moira Cullings “I would party every other weekend Photo by Fernando Ugarte when my children were with their father,” she said. “I turned to alcohol, drugs, partying and my pain pills.” Eventually, the party lifestyle caught up to her. In 2008, three of Lopez-Owens’ friends committed an aggravated robbery while with her, and she was placed on probation because she had no criminal record. By 2012, she was a full-blown drug addict, taking anywhere from four to 20 hydrocodone pills a day. Because of her probation, she was required to submit to random drug tests. After multiple failed tests, Lopez-Owens was sentenced to prison for 11 years. She was sent to the Topeka Correctional Facility. Alone and scared, she turned to God. “[God] was the first person I turned to,” said Lopez-Owens. “This experience has created a close, intimate, loving, caring relationship between us. This is where God wanted me. “If I wasn’t in prison, I would have never, ever, had this relationship with him.” Lopez-Owens said she wakes up each morning and thanks God for another day. She prays for the safety of her children. She prays for her mother, who has become her children’s de facto mother. And she prays for her ex-husband. “We’ve all been given several crosses Lopez-Owens’ release date is March 9, to bear,” Knipp said. “Naturally, we are 2022. going to fall like the Lord did. Hopefully “Prison is not where I want to be, but I we can bounce back. thank God and ask him to please help me “And hopefully, in the end, we rise to get through my time,” she said. “I wake glory like the Lord did.” up every morning in a good mood, all because of God.” Story by Todd Habiger Photo by Lori Wood Habiger Story by Todd Habiger

‘Tough girl’ offers it up

T. MARYS — With her slim build and grandmotherly looks, Eileen Knipp doesn’t look like the toughest gal you would ever stumble across — but she is. Don’t believe me? Can you get dental work done without any pain medication? She does it all the time. “I’ve always been a tough girl,” she said with a chuckle. Instead of pain medication, EILEENKNIPP Knipp offers her Immaculate Conception, pain to the Lord St. Marys by praying the Stations of the Cross. For as long as she can remember, Knipp has dealt with pain — specifically, severe leg cramps at night. “If I tried to get up, I think I would fall,” she said. “So I just lay there, pray the Stations and think, ‘OK, I’m walking with the Lord. Surely, he hurt a heck of a lot more than I’m hurting.’” Sometime as a child, Knipp started praying the Stations. She doesn’t know when and she doesn’t know why, but she’s always had a special affection for the Stations. “To me, the Stations of the Cross are our whole life,” she said. “Our Lord suf-

MAY 13, 2016





MAY 13, 2016

A time of peace and blessings


EA — For David Downey, a quiet run in the crisp, early morning hours of the day is the perfect occasion for prayer. “I started this habit probably 10 years ago,” said Downey, a parishioner at Queen of the Holy Rosary in Wea. “It is very peaceful and quiet, so it was a DAVIDDOWNEY great Queen of the Holy Rosary, Wea way to s t a y in shape and remember to be thankful to God and pray for my family,” he said. What some may consider a form of punishment is actually a time of peace and blessings for Downey. “Mostly I run on the country roads around my house, which see very little traffic early in the morning,” he said. “I am more likely to see wildlife than cars on most runs.” Downey runs five to six miles about three times a week, and said it takes at least five miles to get in a complete rosary. A bit of spiritual reading before his runs also gives him something concrete to contemplate on during his time of exercise. Like running, praying is an

Riding in the fields of the Lord


ABETHA — Astride her horse and riding through the countryside of rural Sabetha gives Patty Locher the perfect place to pray. Sometimes, she prays the rosary. But more often than not, she sings. “Singing hymns is uplifting to me,” said L o c h e r. PATTYLOCHER “SomeSacred Heart, Sabetha one — perhaps a saint, I don’t remember — once said, ‘Singing is praying twice.’” (For the record, St. Augustine of Hippo is credited with that particular quote.) Locher, a member of Sacred Heart Parish, Sabetha, has three horses — Ariel, Bonnie and Speedy — that serve as her


Story by Moira Cullings Photo by Doug Hesse


EAVENWORTH — Patti companions on her spiritual journey. Davis, a member of ImmacLocher started praying while ulate Conception-St. Joseph riding several years ago. She says a Parish here, has a habit of prayer before and after she mounts blessing people, even when — for her, and her horse’s, safety. they don’t sneeze. “I like to just get my mind, body “I’m a third order Carmelite,” of adults thank and horse centered for a little bit she said. “Our charism is contemGod for what he has before we move out,” she said. plative and in the world.” done in their lives. Locher likes to sing out loud. One of the ways Davis lives Source: Barna She hopes her singing will make Research Ltd. that charism is by encountering the wildlife scatter as she approachpeople, engaging them in genuine, es and thus not spook her horses. caring conversation, and blessing them. “I wish my horses could talk so “One day, I thought to myself, ‘Why they could tell me whether or not should I wait they like to hear my voice or prefer till somebody PATTIDAVIS silence,” she said. “When I ride withsneezes to Immaculate Conceptionout singing or talking to my horse, it bless them?’” St. Joseph, Leavenworth just seems so quiet.” she said. “So that’s how Story by Todd Habiger it started. And I do it to every single Photo by Julie Locher person I talk to.” Davis thinks of it as a walking prayer. And she’s been walking this prayer for 12 years now. “We have a riverfront here in Leavenworth,” she said. “Lots of people walk right here. And so I try to walk on that several times a week.” When she encounters someone, she stops and asks them how they’re doing — and she does so with genuine interest. “I’ll ask, ‘How are you doing?’ and have a little conversation,” she said. “So many people have problems in the world. “We all need to take a few minutes to talk to our fellow men and women.” Before she walks away, Davis always says, “God bless you.” “One man said, ‘Gosh, I can’t think of the last time anybody blessed me — and I really needed that,’” she said.


activity that starts each day off right. “Once the day starts, many disruptions can occur that can seem more important, and that may infringe on being able to exercise,” he said. “If I have started my day with exercise, then I know I have accomplished that at least for the day,” he added. “The same can be said for prayer.” But Downey said that prayer, like running, doesn’t necessarily need to happen at a particular part of the day. The important part is that it happens. And finding time to pray — not just at church, but throughout daily life — has boundless benefits. “All the things that you do during the day can become offerings and sacrifices to God,” said Downey. We are able to thank God when things go well and ask for help in times of trial, he said. Downey also does a Holy Hour each week, which, he said, makes for a wonderful structured time with God. “But praying while running is more about making your whole life a prayer,” he said.

Davis believes in showing compassion and kindness toward all people. She knows not everyone she encounters is a Christian, but most everyone believes in God. “So ‘God bless you’ includes everyone,” she said. “People don’t always want to hear preaching — they just want to hear kindness in somebody’s voice. “And maybe they’ll take it from there, and be kind to the next person.” By Jill Ragar Esfeld Photo by Doug Hesse




MAY 13, 2016

ARMCHAIR DEVOTION Sometimes God says ‘no’



ENEXA — Holy Trinity parishioners Charlene Meiners and her husband Richard have a deep devotion to St. Anthony. As well they should. The patron of finding lost items was instrumental in helping them find each other. “A few years after my first husband died suddenly at CHARLENEMEINERS age 62,” Holy Trinity, Lenexa said Meiners, “I started asking St. Anthony to help me find another ‘Mr. Right.’ “We met when I walked directly to his table at a Curé of Ars singles dance.” The couple has been together ever

since, sharing a love for prayer. They attend morning Mass together, saying their morning prayers in the car on the way. And they share a daily rosary — but not on their knees, like Meiners remembers doing in her youth. “My husband and I today take it the easy way,” she said. “Now that we’re in our 70s, we sit in our recliners or on the porch swing or on the deck at sunset.” Meiners’ husband has a talent for building decorative birdhouses — some even with stained-glass windows. And so, the deck is where they share their love of nature as they pray. “There we can enjoy God’s birds flying in and out of the many unusual birdhouses,” said Meiners.

ERN — Ida Schiffbauer needed this one. Her husband Ralph had just been diagnosed with cancer — the kind you don’t recover from. So she prayed. And God said “no.” “I was going to work — I was praying a novena to St. Jude. In my mind, I heard this ‘no,’” she said. She was IDASCHIFFBAUER devastated. Sts. Peter and Paul, Seneca The couple, in fact, starts every day “I didn’t with their devotion to St. Anthony, along beg God to with special prayers to their guardian change his mind,” she said. “But I asked angels, for the poor souls in purgatory, him to help me cope with it. and to offer up any trials they may face “And he did. He did.” that day. Ralph would die a few months “You have to deal with all that later. But Schiffbauer takes comfort happens every day,” said Meiners. in the fact that she got those few of Americans have “So you might as well offer it up months with her husband and prayed for people who with that morning offering every that her prayer was answered. have mistreated them day. She didn’t like the answer, but Source: “That way you can get some she did get one. LifeWayReasearch.com spiritual benefit from it. That day’s “We hear ‘no’ sometimes for trials are not wasted.” our own good,” Schiffbauer said. “It’s helped me grow. I did learn there is a lot Story by Jill Ragar Esfeld of support in this area for me.” Photo by Doug Hesse After Ralph’s death, Schiffbauer decided that she had to keep living. She and Ralph always wanted to travel, so she called up Father Mike Koller, pastor at that time of her parish of Sts. Peter and Paul in Seneca, and asked about reserving a spot on a pilgrimage he was leading. “Two hours later,” she said, “he called me back. He said, ‘I not only have a spot for you on this trip, I have a roommate.’” “I thought, ‘this ought to be good,’” she said. It was. That person was Sally Lauer. She, too, had lost a husband to cancer. Not only did Schiffbauer find a special friend, but she found someone she could confide in. “We understand each other,” she said. “We know what each other is feeling. She’s just a very special woman.” Together, the two have traveled to more than 25 countries in the years since Ralph died in 2010. Schiffbauer has always had an active prayer life, which she attributes to her years of Catholic education in Horton. Years ago, the Schiffbauers moved to Bern, near the Nebraska border, where Ida Schiffbauer carved out a special time for prayer — while walking around town every day. Last December, she moved to Seneca, but has kept up the habit established long ago and prays while walking about town. Outside, she focuses on praying for Schiffbauer is also studying to her family and the things going on in her become an oblate of St. Benedict. life. At Mass, she has a broader focus on “I am learning much about the Rule her parish, the pope and the entire world. of Benedict and how simplicity and ‘lis“Plus, at church, Christ is there in the tening with the ear of the heart’ actually tabernacle, not just in my heart,” she enriches my life,” she said. “That exposaid. sure is making me realize that God is indeed working in us all.” Story by Moira Cullings Photo by Doug Hesse Story by Todd Habiger Photo by Lori Wood Habiger

Nature offers a place to be at peace with God


EAWOOD — For some, praying isn’t a choice. It’s not something to do when it feels right or the timing is good. It’s a necessity. That’s why Curé of Ars parishioner Kristin Schnetzler began making a conscious effort to pray outside. Life is pretty busy when you have four boys to take care of. For the Leawood parishioner, the time she spent with her sons Lars, Xavier, Asa and Hermann KRISTIN quickly turned SCHNETZLER into a time of Curé of Ars, Leawood worrying. “When we’re outside playing, I have a little free time,” she said. “I would think about my problems and would start worrying.” “Then I realized that this was getting me nowhere quick,” she continued, “so I would start praying a Hail Mary. “And suddenly the Holy Spirit was there!” Schnetzler, who was raised Pentecostal, entered the Catholic Church two years ago. She noted that one of the biggest differences between her old faith and her new one is prayer. “Prayer doesn’t stop as a Catholic,” she said. “We pray for our dead. As a Catholic, I realized that prayer, like God, transcends time and space.”

“As a Protestant, I would think of heaven as this lofty place, not a place full of prayer warriors,” she continued. “But that’s what it is. I can ask saints to petition my cause to Christ himself.” Schnetzler now uses her time outside with her sons to focus on prayer, allowing herself to be at peace with God. This time outside brings out a different type of prayer than when she is at church.





MAY 13, 2016

Devotion to rosary connects generations


EAVENWORTH — For most people, ordinary housework can seem to be just that — both ordinary and work. But that doesn’t seem to be the case for Kathy Jaster, a member of Immaculate Conception Parish in Leavenworth. Jaster uses housework as an opportunity to grow in her relationship with Christ. For example, while doing the laundry, she often reflects KATHYJASTER on Mary and Immaculate Conceptionhow she St. Joseph, Leavenworth would have washed what few clothes the Holy Family had. While washing dishes, she ponders how the Blessed Mother would have prepared meals and washed dishes for St. Joseph and Jesus. All day long, Jaster said she finds moments in which to meditate on the mysteries of God. It’s a practice she has developed throughout her 70 years of life, one that seems to have started early on with her grandmother. As a cradle Catholic, Jaster said she’d often go to her grandmother with a concern or problem. Her grandmother’s solution for almost every problem was the same — prayer. “She always had a rosary in her pocket,” said Jaster. “Nowadays, I wake up praying the rosary.” Jaster’s grandmother died when Jaster was in the seventh grade, but there’s no doubt in her mind that her grandmother’s example was a powerful witness. She remembers praying the rosary at least once or twice each day in the years since then. Perhaps that’s why she took up rosarymaking in high school. More than 50 years later, she continues to repair and make rosaries for family, friends, parishioners and anyone else in need. Also, through groups like Our Lady’s Rosary Makers, she makes rosaries for the missions, many of which have been distributed in communist countries. In fact, some of her rosaries have been given to a priest in Alaska, who, in turn, gets them into the former Soviet Union. It’s not always been easy, though. Jaster said that same priest had to sew the rosaries into his coat lining to smuggle them into the country. As she makes or repairs rosaries, she prays for those who brought the rosaries to her or for those who will receive them.

When God opens a window


“I connect with Mary,” she said. If she knows recipients’ specific needs, she prays for them. Sometimes, God has placed needs on her heart through Mary. She calls it “a contemplative connection” of sorts. And her contemplative connection seems to have reached into all areas of her life. As an oblate of St. Benedict, she keeps the Rule of St. Benedict as it applies to

EAWOOD — There was a time when Lori Dulaney’s favorite way of prayer was to walk around her neighborhood reciting the rosary. However, health problems require that she now use an oxygen tank. She has, in effect, been grounded. No matter. She has a rocker beside a window in her bedroom. From there, her prayer life gives her not merely a window on the world, LORIDULANEY but on St. Michael the heaven as Archangel, Leawood well. “I usually pray the rosary and, after that, the Divine Mercy chaplet,” said Dulaney, a member of St. Michael the Archangel Parish in Leawood. “My mind may wander a bit about my life and what’s going on, but I ask God to help me with the things that are bothering me.” The rosary has been a staple of her spirituality for nearly all her life, but her married state. The motto of St. Benthe Divine Mercy chaplet became a edict was, “Ora et labora.” Translated, it cherished devotion when her son means simply “pray and work.” Dennis Dulaney died 12 years ago. The National And every day, Jaster said she “It gives me peace of mind,” Day of Prayer was finds ample opportunities to do enacted in 1952 by the she said. both. Congress and President Harry S. Truman. Story by Joe Bollig Story by Marc and Julie Anderson Source: Pew Photo by Doug Hesse Research Center Photo by Doug Hesse

‘How blessed are we? How fortunate are we?’


AWRENCE — The date of this special issue — May 13 — is an auspicious one to Georgine McHenry, a member of St. John the Evangelist Parish here. For it was on May 13, 1917, that the Blessed Virgin Mary first appeared to three shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal. The children, two girls and GEORGINEMCHENRY one boy, St. John the Evangelist, Lawrence received visions for six months. The church has since determined the visions to be authentic. As McHenry is one of three children, two boys and one girl, she found it interesting that the holy card used for her mother’s funeral featured a picture of Our Lady of Fatima with the three children. It is a fact that has comforted McHenry. She said her mother was an amazing model of faith. “I couldn’t have had a better role model

for being Catholic. . . . Mom was good.” Perhaps her mother’s example is why McHenry’s prayer life is rich today and includes prayer styles that range from the rosary and the chaplet of Divine Mercy to informal conversations with God. But McHenry said praying while listening to music is probably her favorite way of praying. After retiring in 2011, McHenry has more free time than she used to. And while she has an abundance of Christian music on her computer, she does not want to sit in front of it. Nor does she want to sit in front of a television. So, she knits and puts music on in the background. Using a machine on a table to assist with the knitting process, McHenry said the activity itself is somewhat mindless. While the music plays, McHenry reflects on the lyrics. “And I just knit away. . . . The music soothes me,” she said. Having grown up listening to both Motown and disco records, listening to Chris-

tian music was not something she enjoyed at first. Now, she cannot imagine her life differently. McHenry wakes up most mornings with Christian songs running through her head. Some of her favorite songs right now include “Life is Beautiful” by Press Play, “Feel It” by Tobymac and “Trust In You” by Lauren Daigle, a variation of the chaplet of Divine Mercy. Even though she has some favorites, McHenry said she ends up getting lost in almost whatever song she’s listening to at any moment. [The song] ends up enveloping all of me,” said McHenry. “And I just feel at peace. No matter what’s going on, I feel peaceful.” Knitting has also become a form of prayer for her. Before McHenry retired, she thought about what she would do with her spare time. She settled on making knitted items like ear warmers and scarves and giving them to charitable organizations. Almost 60

of the cold weather accessories she crafted were distributed recently. “Every day, we walk up to a faucet; every day, we go to a closet and pick out clothes,” said McHenry. “Every day, we go to the refrigerator and it’s got food in it. . . . How blessed are we? How fortunate are we?” She knows that not everyone is as fortunate. “We have to have gratitude [for the simple, ordinary things],” she added. For those struggling in their prayer lives, McHenry offers this simple advice. “Praying is like learning to play the piano,” she said. “If you see a piano in front of you, it makes noise. You press a key, and it makes a sound. But you have no idea what you’re doing. “People have to practice to play the piano, and I think prayer needs to be practiced as well.” Story by Marc and Julie Anderson




MAY 13, 2016

HOMEWARD BOUND or meditating on the eternal

Prayer, the cornerstone



OPEKA — Eighty-year-old Gertrude Gibbs already has her funeral all planned out. Indeed, it was a funeral that provided her with perhaps her favorite place

to pray. But that’s getting ahead of the story. About 40 years ago, Gibbs and her husband Bob left Topeka for Wichita. A cradle Catholic, she said she never tried to pressure her non-Catholic husband into joining her GERTRUDEGIBBS faith traMost Pure Heart of Mary, Topeka dition. And “the marvelous man” she married always supported her and their children in their faith as Catholics. Nearly three years ago, Bob became ill. A priest visited him and asked if he’d like to be received into the Catholic faith. “He converted on his deathbed to Catholicism,” said Gibbs, adding that his conversion really was the result of being exposed to the faith over time. “He’d been exposed to the faith for 59 years or more,” she said. “Even though he was not a full-fledged Catholic, he was Catholic.” After Bob’s death, Gibbs brought him back to Topeka for burial at the only Catholic cemetery in town, Mount Calvary.

Burying him on their 59th wedding anniversary, Gibbs remembers thinking the timing was appropriate. “We made it through,” she said. “We got it done.” After burying her husband, Gibbs decided to remain in Topeka. She became a member of Most Pure Heart of Mary Parish and began walking her chihuahuas through the cemetery to check on her beloved’s grave. In short order, the cemetery became her favorite place to pray. There, she feels a sense of closeness to her husband, but there’s more to it than she ever dreamed. “I liked being there. It was quiet. You got in touch with nature,” she said. “I got to reading tombstones. And so, when the weather was nice, we would go over and walk.” As she read the names on the tombstones, memories of departed family and friends came back to her. “I did a lot of reminiscing,” Gibbs said. “It fostered a sense of gratitude for all those before me who gave me the gift of Catholicism.” As she walks, she prays. Sometimes she just meditates on the names; sometimes she prays a formal prayer, like the rosary or the Hail Mary. “Sometimes, I like to sing. No one has

EAWOOD — Mark Walsh, a parishioner at St. Michael the Archangel Parish here, finds life keeps him running. In fact, sometimes in a single week, he’ll run in California, Texas and Ohio. The physical benefits of running are obvious. But for Walsh, running has provided him with something he said is far more importMARKWALSH ant — a form of St. Michael the prayer. Archangel, Leawood A cradle Catholic, Walsh said he spent his formative years in to listen to me there,” she added with a Catholic schools in Iowa. He and his chuckle. wife sent their four children to Catholic During Lent, she often sang “Were schools as well. Yet, somewhere on life’s You There?” for her meditation. road, he just stopped educating himself “The ability to think about what I am on the Catholic faith. singing, the words I am saying. . . . It has On the outside, Walsh said his life a greater impact for me,” Gibbs said. seemed to be perfect. He had money, Last year, Gibbs underwent chemoa good job, a good home, a loving wife therapy. As a result, she cut back on the and family. time she spends at the cemetery and “My life would have looked to in another favorite form of prayer, be, on the outside, as perfect as it eucharistic adoration. of Americans who could be,” he said. “Life, for me, is changing,” she pray, pray for family In reality, though, he was missaid. or friends erable . . . until about two years Nowadays, her brother brings Source: LifeWayReasearch.com ago when he changed jobs. But her Communion. The two go over that’s not all he changed. the Scriptures and pray together. “I changed everything,” he said. He Sometimes, she watches the Eternal quit drinking and quickly dropped 30 Word Television Network and follows pounds. along with the Mass, the rosary or the “The biggest thing I changed, chaplet of Divine Mercy. though, was I started praying every “My mind wanders, though,” Gibbs day,” said Walsh. said. “Prayer became the cornerstone of Frequently, Gibbs said she finds hermy life,” he added. self thinking about her husband and her He started slowly. Before his mornnext earthly home, the cemetery. And, ing run, he’d spend 30 minutes in prayer as already mentioned, she already has and reflection, mostly reading the Bible her funeral all planned out. and then a reflection by a Franciscan “I’m just waiting for the Lord to call priest. me home,” she said. Then, at a Christ Renews His Parish retreat, “we were challenged to pray for Story by Marc and Julie Anderson an hour every morning,” said Walsh. Photo by Jay Soldner But where would he find the time? Between time already spent in prayer, his morning run of anywhere between three to five miles, his job and his family life, he was literally “running out of time” in his day. Then, it hit him. He could pray while running and contemplate God’s creation at the same time. So, he bought a rosary ring and started praying the rosary on his morning run. “I loved it,” he said. “I realized I don’t have to quit.” Now, he starts his morning as usual with 30 minutes of prayer before running. And he’s gradually used his iPhone to add other spiritual listening to his running experience. But he does not neglect the rosary. And on his long run, usually reserved for Sunday mornings, Walsh spends the last few miles in silence, just being with God and nature. “My running becomes the extension of my prayer,” he said.


High times, hard times all go faster with prayer


REELEY — Joyce Burris, a member of St. John the Baptist Parish here, is living proof that you don’t need a stained-glass sanctuary to have a great experience of prayer. An overhead crane is an excellent venue. So are the confines of MRI and CT scan machines. JOYCEBURRIS Burris, St. John the Baptist, Greeley who retired in 2011, used to operate an indoor overhead crane for 33 years for Taylor Forge Engineered Systems in Paola. Her position was in a cab in a section called “the bridge.” During downtime, she’d take out her Bible. “It took me about three years but, in between moves, I managed to read the entire Bible in [those] three years,” said Burris. Over the years, she has also prayed her

way through MRIs and CT scans. “I know that I can say a rosary in about 15 minutes,” she said. “Those MRI or CT tubes are pretty enclosed. So, I’d close my eyes and use my fingers for rosary beads. If they told me it would be a 45-minute session, I’d know I’d probably say three rosaries in there. It just made the time go faster for me. And it was so quiet, so I could pretty well concentrate on what I was praying.” Currently, Burris is contending with lung cancer. Praying the rosary while receiving shots or radiation treatments makes it much more bearable. “It relaxes me,” she said. “I’m a little claustrophobic anyway, so I prefer to concentrate on prayer, rather than what’s happening around me.” Story by Joe Bollig Photo by Doug Hesse

Story by Marc and Julie Anderson Photo by Doug Hesse






ORTONVILLE — There is only one road that leads from Linda Funk’s home where she has lived since her marriage in 1968 into the town of Nor-

tonville. And she walks it just about every day. “It depends, of course,” she LINDAFUNK hedges. St. Joseph, Nortonville “Not in the winter if the weather’s bad,” she admits. “If I put on plenty of clothes, I might go.” The road Funk refers to is the county line road running on the boundary of Atchison and Jefferson counties. It leads

directly from her home right into town and right smack up to St. Joseph Church. She routinely stops in to spend time in adoration before the Eucharist, partly due to the sage advice she once received. “Whenever you go by a church, stop in and make a visit. And then when you die, God won’t ask, ‘Who is it?’” she said. Her practice of praying the rosary, Funk said, began in earnest almost immediately after the 9/11 attacks nearly 15 years ago. Then her son Anthony encouraged her to join the Legion of Mary. “I’ve been with it ever since,” she said. Her daily prayers begin with the rosary and then go on to include the Memorare, an act of contrition, the guardian angel

Prayer for the


prayer and others. By the time she gets done with those, it’s time to move into a conversation with God and all of the angels and saints. But Funk knows not everybody is ready for all that. So she advises folks to keep it small at first. “Start slowly, a little every day,” Funk said. “Pretty soon, it’s constant.” And then, she said with a laugh, “God says, ‘Oh, it’s her again.’”

ANSAS CITY, Kan. — Up at the crack of dawn (or before), Mary Pickering gets down to business — the business of prayer. Setting her alarm a half-hour early for prayer is something she started five years ago after her husband died. “It made me feel really at peace,” said Pickering, a member of St. Patrick Parish. “I thought this was a good idea, so I decided to do it every morning.” Over the years she’s collected a stack of holy cards. Usually, there’s a prayer on the back, so she works her way through that, followed by the Divine Mercy chaplet. “I pray for each one of my grandchildren individually,” she said. In the daytime, while doing laundry at Arrowhead Middle School in Kansas City, Kansas, she finds odd bits of time to sneak in a prayer. She also works in the school cafeteria’s bread department and prays there, too. When she gets home in the evening, she prays a rosary and says her night prayers.

Story by Marc and Julie Anderson Photo by Lori Wood Habiger


St. Patrick, Kansas City, Kan.

Prayer offers strength in face of nightmare


ARDNER — Lynsey James’ place of prayer is a result of her worst nightmare. On Feb. 6, 2013, her 16-month-old son Canon died. The day before, Canon had suffered a febrile seizure that sent him to Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri. “We were told that they were very common and, although frightening, not a big deal at all,” James said. So, he was sent home. Canon went to bed at 7:30 LYNSEYJAMES p.m. James and Divine Mercy, Gardner her husband checked on him at 8 and 9:30 p.m. When she went to give him his medicine at 11 p.m., she found him unresponsive. James immediately started doing CPR. Paramedics arrived soon thereafter. They were able to get his heart beating again, but Canon had gone too long without oxygen. He was gone. The suddenness of things was difficult for James. “That was one of the things that was the hardest,” James said. “To go from complete normalness to having everything completely destroyed in less than 24 hours.” Dark times followed, as she tried to cope with her son’s death. “I prayed for God to stop my heart — to take me,” she said. “I prayed for an accident so we could all just go to heaven.” “I just prayed these things that were so desperate and dark. I’m thankful that I’m not in that place any longer,” she said. Prayer has helped. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, James and her three children — Tyler, Ellie and Micha — visit Canon at

T Resurrection Cemetery in Lenexa. “I feel like Canon was always part of my schedule as a mom,” James said. “When you’re a mom, you do things for all of them, so it was hard not to have him to do things for. “In the beginning, scheduling him in on those two days is what helped.” Nowadays, James has settled into a routine. She cleans up his headstone, changes decorations according to the season and often eats lunch there. Sometimes, she will read books to Canon. When her children go off to play, James will pray to the Blessed Mother. “I just ask for her help and her strength,” she said. “I feel like she has such grace. Sometimes, I think about her after Jesus was crucified. I think about how hard that must have been. How hard it was — knowing what was coming and knowing that she couldn’t help.

MAY 13, 2016

“She knows this feeling. If I can have a fraction of the strength she had, I will be doing all right.” James is a firm believer in prayer. Without it, she doubts she could have gotten through Canon’s death. “I honestly feel like my burden is shared,” she said. “Whether that is through Mary or Jesus, or even our friends and family who continue to lift us up. I honestly feel that it’s shared. “I don’t think a mother’s heart is capable of surviving this without help from others.” While some might see a cemetery as a place of death, James sees it as a place of love. “When people are here, they’re here because they love someone so very, very much,” she said. Story by Todd Habiger Photo by Lori Wood Habiger

Prisoners serve

OPEKA — Growing up Baptist, St. Matthew parishioner Ron Shirrell had no experience with either eucharistic adoration or asking the saints for their intercession. Even after becoming Catholic more than 20 years ago, he admits the two devotions took some getting used to. In 1993, Shirrell was received into the Catholic Church at Holy Name, Topeka, by thenpastor Father Harry RONSHIRRELL Schneider. Shortly St. Matthew, Topeka thereafter, he spotted a notice in another parish’s bulletin about the need for volunteers for eucharistic adoration. In particular, the parish had a need for people willing to take a late-night slot. “I thought I’d give it a try,” he said. “That really was my first real deep dive into the Catholic prayer life. At the time, I had no idea what adoration was.” What he found out was that he liked it. In fact, he loved it. More than 20 years later, it remains one of his favorite ways to pray. Although Shirrell does not currently maintain a regularly scheduled hour, whenever possible he stops in a chapel between 2 and 3 each afternoon to spend time praying the rosary or the chaplet of Divine Mercy. If he’s not able to get to a chapel, he often tunes the radio or television to the Eternal Word Television Network and follows along. But the chapel visits mean more to him. “When I can break away from my daily routine and really think about Jesus’ presence, that’s what means the most to me,” he said. Besides adoration, Shirrell also regularly




MAY 13, 2016

From dusk till dawn, it’s pray, pray, pray

grieving heart


ANSAS CITY, Kan. — It’s difficult for Vicky Taylor-Hamilton, a member of Our Lady & St. Rose Parish, to pinpoint a moment in her day when she’s not in prayer. From the moment she wakes up, she starts praying. “I say, ‘Praise the Lord. Thank you for keeping me safe last night and please keep me safe today and keep evil away from me,’” she said. After getting out of bed, she heads to the bathroom for her morning routine w h e re , instead VICKYTAYLOR-HAMILTON Our Lady & St. Rose, Kansas City, Kan. of magazines, she has devotionals and prayer books. As she brushes her hair or applies her makeup, she reads from one. Beginning her day with an inspirational reading of some sort, Taylor-Hamilton said, sets the tone for her day. While she was working, on her daily morning and evening commutes, TaylorHamilton prayed at least one set of the mysteries of the rosary. In fact, each day she prays all four sets of mysteries, including the luminous mysteries added by St. John Paul II in October 2002. “Saying the rosary always makes me feel good,” she said. She began praying the rosary daily around 10 years ago while she was still working. During her 37-year career as a civil rights investigator for the U.S. Department of Education, the morning commute was a chance for her to mental-

“Praying was part of my grieving process,” said Pickering. “After a while, I said to myself, ‘Mary, this is a really good idea,’ so I prayed to Jesus to help me get through it. It makes me feel so much better, and I feel so much closer to God. “It gives you a peace that you can’t explain,” she added. Story by Joe Bollig Photo by Doug Hesse

The Supreme Court ruled that U.S. legislative and administrative bodies may begin their sessions with a prayer.

ly and spiritually prepare for her day. Her prayer didn’t stop once she got out of her car, though. Arriving early for work, she spent the extra time in prayer. “When I was working, I always kept holy water in my office at work,” she said. “I used to pray before I would start my workday.” Of course, as a government employee investigating discrimination complaints she had to be careful not to make a big deal of her prayer. So, she’d close her office door and pray by herself. Only after her prayers were finished did she officially begin her workday. Now retired, Taylor-Hamilton prays in her car wherever she goes, whether it’s to the grocery store or a friend’s house.

And throughout the day, when she’s not praying formally, she’s constantly reminding herself of God’s goodness through inspirational one-liners like: “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good.” “I just say little inspirational things to myself throughout the day,” she said. “I’m constantly in prayer.” A wife and mother, Taylor-Hamilton prays for her two sons and their families. In the past few years though, she said her prayer has increased in intensity and quality. In February 2015, Taylor-Hamilton’s father died. Just 10 months later, her husband died. Their illnesses definitely had an impact on her prayer life. “It seems like I’ve been praying a lot more,” she said simply. For those struggling with prayer, TaylorHamilton said it’s not so much about how your pray, but more about getting started and learning to embrace silence. “My advice would be for them to go in a room and be quiet,” she said. “First, I’d have them breathe a little bit and get relaxed. While you’re relaxing, you start thinking about the Lord and start connecting with the Lord.” “Just be honest and open up,” said TaylorHamilton. “Just have a regular conversation with the Lord. Just talk to him.” She said there’s one last piece of advice she’d offer others, too. “Whatever you do, thank the Lord,” she said. “Some people forget to say — and you need to say — ‘thank you’ before you get to asking for things.” Story by Marc and Julie Anderson Photo by Lori Wood Habiger

Source: Pew Research Center

e as inspiration invokes the saints. Although he didn’t take much stock in their intercession at first, he found himself turning to the saints in sheer desperation not long after he became Catholic. A retired firefighter, Shirrell said he always left his wedding ring at home while on duty. He usually left it in a safe place, but this time, he simply could not recall where that was. After searching for days, he turned to St. Anthony for help. It wasn’t an idea he particularly relished. He was still to adjusting to life as a Catholic. But the women in his Bible study group often shared with him amazing stories of saintly intercession. “I got on my knees in our bedroom and I prayed to St. Anthony,” Shirrell said, adding he wasn’t sure what to expect, if anything. After he finished, he got up and walked right to the ring. From then on, he was hooked on the saints. But Shirrell said that one of the most touching ways he regularly experiences God’s love is through the prisoners he visits as part of his prison ministry. Shirrell sometimes leads a Communion service as part of his visit, during which prisoners are encouraged to share prayer requests aloud. “What gets me the most is how they always pray for someone else and not themselves,” he said. “Something is happening to them spiritually for them to break away from the me-meme attitude,” said Shirrell. “The inmates are always praying for the others who are incarcerated with them, as well as their families. “That, to me, just seems so genuine.” Story by Marc and Julie Anderson



EA — Ray Reuter takes Chapter 5, Verses 16-18, of St. Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians very seriously: “Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.” Reuter, a member of Queen RAYREUTER of the Holy Rosary Queen of the Holy Parish in Wea, is the Rosary, Wea owner of Kaizen, Inc., a training, coaching, consulting and personal development company. Kaizen is a business philosophy that means “continuous improvement.” If improvement can be continuous, so

can prayer. When he wakes up, he typically says three prayers: the Ignatian Suscipe, the Ignatian Generosity Prayer and the Prayer of Jabez. Next, he turns to the daily readings and reflection from the “Give Us This Day” prayer devotional. He and his wife Julie also embrace and pray together before they leave the house. If exercising, he uses Hail Marys to count repetitions — one Hail Mary counting for roughly 25 reps. And Reuter prays before all his meetings. “If it’s a one-on-one coaching meeting, I at a minimum pray in advance of the appointment,” he said. “With several clients, we will pray either before or after the ap-

pointment together. Usually, after, I pray for the things that came up during our coaching session. If it’s a training situation, if at all possible, I will circle the training room three times [in honor of the Holy Trinity] in advance of the session.” Prayer before all meals is a given, and when his head hits the pillow, it’s time for the Daily Examen. Even using tech is a time for prayer. “All my codes use a version of the Sign of the Cross,” he said. “So whenever I need to unlock the screen on my phone, iPad or whatever, I am praying the Sign of the Cross.” Story by Joe Bollig Photo by Doug Hesse




Prayer by design




ENEXA — Cleaning and prayer have always been part of Sheila Berry’s life. As a member of the devout Catholic family that owned the White Haven Motor Lodge in Overland Park, Berry grew up knowing her way around a dust cloth. “I was the general manager,” she said. “But, of course, beSHEILABERRY Holy Trinity, Lenexa sides running the desk and so forth, you have to be a jack-of-all-trades.” The White Haven had a reputation for being spotless. “My brothers and I were constantly experimenting with what things worked to keep the rooms clean,” said the Holy Trinity, Lenexa, parishioner. “We worked hard and we worked to do it economically.” “We made our own glass cleaner,” she said, “and we were constantly looking for stuff that worked better than something else.”


When the historic motel closed in 2010, after 53 years in operation, Berry thought she might be able to turn the cleaning skills she’d honed there into a business. “I was already helping to take care of my mother’s house,” she said. “And I thought, ‘I wonder if I could make some money doing this?’ “And sure enough, you can.” Berry has found that cleaning houses, a solitary activity, is the perfect environment for prayer. “So I can work and pray at the same time,” she said. “Besides praying in general — for my family and so forth — I always make sure I pray for the people whose houses I’m in — even though they don’t know that. “I love to say the rosary and the Divine Mercy prayers.” Berry’s father had a devotion to the Fifteen Prayers of St. Bridget, meditating on the passion of Christ. He requested that all his children recite the devotion every day for one year. In the process, Berry memorized all

LATHE — Laura Damewood prays by design — the designs of the landscapes she works on, that is. “Over the last three years, my spirituality became more of a priority, so I found myself searching for ways to incorporate it into every aspect of my daily the prayers and still says them daily as life,” said well. DameLAURADAMEWOOD Berry’s cleaning business has been wood, Prince of Peace, Olathe up and running for six years now and, “ n o t though she enjoys all her clients, Holy just in Trinity chapel is her favorite church or the chapel or cozying up with “Father Tom [Dolezal] asked me to the Bible. clean the stone chapel,” she said. “I love “So I guess really my yard and my it because it is the most beautiful little clients’ yards have become my outdoor church, and I always want it to be peradoration chapels.” fect.” Damewood, a parishioner of An If Berry knows she’s going to Prince of Peace Church in Olathe, average prayer be cleaning the chapel for a few said that praying on the job has lasts just under hours, she’ll bring along her old brought inner peace to her life. boom box and play spiritual music five minutes. “It’s a form of recognizing and as she cleans and prays. Source: Barna having gratitude for the divinity Research Ltd. While she cleans, “I think of all found in all things and all people at the people who have prayed there,” all times, everywhere,” she said. she said. “There is such a spiritual con“It makes me appreciate the crew I nection of generations upon generahave who do the labor, the tools I use, tions. the clients I meet, the plants and trees, “It’s my favorite job, and it’s as close the water — everything,” she added. as I can get to heaven.” This form of prayer, she said, eliminates worry, fear and anxiety. Story by Jill Ragar Esfeld “Praying helps me change my perPhoto by Doug Hesse spective on daily things and helps me remember that all things and situations serve a purpose,” said Damewood. “My life is so much stronger now because prayer has led me to surrender and trust in God, and has placed the unfolding of life situations into the hands of our heavenly Father,” she said. Outside is also where Damewood feels most connected to God. “Prayer is prayer, no matter where one is . . . but I’ll admit that praying in my yard takes me deeper than going anywhere else,” she said. Nothing, said Damewood, not even chocolate, is better than watering plants under the warmth of the sun, listening to the birds and saying a prayer. She also makes an effort to pray throughout the day, even if she’s not working. “The car is where I generally pray for others — especially those that cut me off in traffic!” she said. A sense of humor and the ability to offer things up rather than get angry give Damewood a sense of peace. Many times throughout the day, the mind wanders, she said, and prayer helps to refocus the mind, bringing a sense of awareness of the many things for which to be thankful. advice? Get over it. A witness of prayer “Praying with intention is profound,” may be just what it takes to encourage she said. “I peacefully glide through life someone else to pray, too. on the wings of prayer, and it’s like being in heaven every day.” Story by Joe Bollig Photo by Lori Wood Habiger Story by Moira Cullings Photo by Doug Hesse

Prayer is the first step

ANSAS CITY, Kan. — For Pat Klausner, prayer is the first step she takes to help hurting women. Klausner, a member of Holy Spirit Parish in Overland Park, is program coordinator for Project Rachel. Project Rachel is a healing ministry devoted to women who’ve experienced an abortion. These women — and their children — are foremost in her mind as she PATKLAUSNER prays. Holy Spirit, Overland Park “I office with the Wyandotte Pregnancy Center in Kansas City, Kansas,” said Klausner. “In the morning at about 9, we all gather for prayer. We pray for our clients and we pray for ourselves — that we may see [our clients’] needs surface. They come to us with a host of problems, so we pray for the Holy Spirit to guide us.” Klausner and the WPC staff ask God to be with them as they do their work on behalf of their clients, and they ask that God’s grace will be experienced by their clients. Klausner likes to pray the Divine Mercy chaplet at 3 p.m.

“I firmly believe in the Divine Mercy,” she said. “Three p.m. is the hour of Divine Mercy. I take a break, go outside and just walk around and pray the chaplet. I’m only out there a short time, about 10 minutes.” A lot of people are shy about being seen praying the rosary in public. Klausner’s

MAY 13, 2016




MAY 13, 2016

‘The Virgin Mary doesn’t mind’


LATHE — Prince of Peace parishioner Rosario Downey grew up in the Philippines, immersed in a deeply Catholic culture. “When we were in grade school,” she said, “all the kids prayed the rosary, so we knew the rosary by heart. “Even the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary — I can ROSARIODOWNEY recite all of those withPrince of Peace, Olathe out reading them. “We were trained that way.” Downey still has a deep devotion to her faith. She goes to daily Mass and prays in her car on the way there. “So, from home to church, I don’t stop praying,” she said. After Mass, she goes to the eucharistic adoration chapel to say a rosary. “If I don’t have time to go to adoration,” she said, “I pray the rosary here at home and I ask my husband to pray with me.” Throughout the day, whenever she is driving, she continues to pray.


“I pray for my safety first of all, that I don’t get in an accident,” she said. “I pray for people who don’t have time to pray and for those in purgatory who have no one praying for them. “I pray for peace throughout the world, because I know how our Then you world is in turmoil.” will call upon me Downey is the leader of a and come and pray rosary group at Prince of Peace to me, and I will and she encourages other memhear you. bers to follow her example. Jer 29:12 “I tell them when you are driving, look at where you are going and look at the traffic, but pray,” she said. Every two years, Downey goes back home to the Philippines. It’s a long trip and she finds it impossible to sleep on the plane. So she prays. “It’s 12 hours to the Philippines,” she said. “What can you do but pray the rosary? “The Virgin Mary doesn’t mind if we pray the rosary several times a day!”

It’s raining prayers and grace

Story by Jill Ragar Esfeld Photo by Lori Wood Habiger


ENEXA — Terri French has a theory about road rage — if you rain enough grace down on the people around you, God will overcome. So far, it’s working As a workers’ compensation case manager, this Holy Trinity, Lenexa, parishioner is often on the road. “When I have injured workers,” she said, “I have to go to their TERRIFRENCH appointments Holy Trinity, Lenexa with them. “There are days I drive to Topeka, Independence, Overland Park, Kansas City and back home.” French read an article once that talked about how graces are showered down on the people around you when you pray. She liked that idea. “I thought, ‘You know, that’s kind of a neat thing,’” she said. “So then I just stated my intention to pray while I drive.” French pays attention to everything around her as she drives — knowing her prayers are helping.

If she drives by an accident or sees someone speeding, she offers up an intention for that person. “And those people that are impatient and they have to get around you?” she said. “I pray they get where they need to be because they’re obviously in a hurry.” French was in an accident last December when a man entering the highway merged into her car. Though her car was damaged, she wasn’t hurt at all. “I was able to stay calm because I was praying,” she said. When the insurance adjuster called to investigate the claim, he asked French if she was on her phone or listening to the radio when the accident occurred. “I said, ‘No, I was praying the rosary,’” she recalled. “He said, ‘Well, I guess we’re buying this one then.’” In addition to the rosary, French prays the Divine Mercy chaplet, the chaplet of faith and the Memorare. “Why wouldn’t I want to do something that uplifts me as well as the people around me?” she said. Story by Jill Ragar Esfeld Photo by Doug Hesse

Believe in a power greater than yourself

OPEKA — For Tim Meier, a member of St. Theresa Parish in Perry, the path to a strong prayer life took an unexpected turn 28 years ago when he checked himself into a treatment program. There, he found the strength to take a different road, one he had previously abandoned. A cradle Catholic, the 62-year-old Meier attended Catholic schools through high TIMMEIER school. His prayer life St. Theresa, Perry consisted of prayers said in school, at Mass, at a parish rosary or grace before family meals. Over time, he stopped praying and going to Mass altogether. And he turned to alcohol. In 1988, he realized he needed help. With family support, Meier entered a treatment program. There, he found what he’d been missing — a prayer life. Upon arrival at the facility, he looked at the wall where the Twelve-step program was listed. “You realize there’s some spirituality to the program,” Meier said. In fact, the second and third steps encourage people to believe in a power greater than themselves and to turn their lives over to God. One of the first prayers Meier encoun-

tered was the Serenity Prayer, which reads: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” “That was a daily thing,” said Meier. He often prayed it several times a day on his own. And every Alcoholics Anonymous meeting in which he participated (some-

times five or more a week) began and ended with that prayer. For five years, Meier prayed the Serenity Prayer in the morning and attended at least one daily meeting. At night, he made a moral inventory of how he had done that particular day before praying the Serenity Prayer one last time. Comparing it to an examination of conscience, the moral inventory helped him to identify specific be-

haviors that, if left unchecked, might lead him down the wrong road. Between 1993 and 1997, Meier said, he didn’t keep up the routine as much as he probably should have. Then, his dad, one of his heroes, died. “I realized I needed to protect my sobriety, and I wondered how to do that,” he said. Around that same time, his family moved and started attending St. Theresa Church in nearby Perry. “And you have to realize, I hadn’t been going at all,” said Meier. But that soon changed, and he and his family returned again and again. Eventually, he joined the choir, where he found a new place to pray. In fact, Meier enjoys singing so much that he often finds himself “singing” the words of the “Ave Maria” or whatever “Gloria” is in season as he’s going to sleep. By “singing,” he said, the words flow in his mind, and he finds himself able to quiet himself for the night. Nowadays, Meier serves as a sponsor in an effort to help others find the same peace he now enjoys. “The Twelve-step program is a beautiful, well-thought-out plan that anyone can do,” he said. Story by Marc and Julie Anderson Photo by Jay Soldner




MAY 13, 2016



ANSAS CITY, Kan. — When she retired several years ago, St. Patrick parishioner Jan Combs had two aspects of her life she wanted to improve: prayer and

exercise. “And I realized if I wanted to do as much exercising as I wanted to do, JANCOMBS and if I was St. Patrick, Kansas City, Kan. going to do as much praying as I wanted to do,” she said, “I was going to have to combine them.” Combs lives in a senior living apartment house with a long wraparound corridor that she walks several times every day. “If you start at one end and you go all the way around,” she said, “it’s about a tenth of a mile.”

Because her route is so routine and isolated, Combs has found it easy to get into a meditative state during her daily walk. It’s a perfect time, in fact, to say meditative prayers. “I do other prayers when I’m not walking, like the Divine Office,” she said. “But when I walk, I do things like the rosary and the chaplet of Divine Mercy, which are very repetitive.” While on her meditative walk, Combs thinks about the people she knows who need prayers and the mysteries of the rosary as they apply to her life. “It’s really nice to be doing something physically repetitive at the same time,” she said. And Combs doesn’t have to use a Fitbit to track her mileage. The rosary does that for her.

It’s all in the (prayer) cards


“I just decide I’m going to do a twentyARYSVILLE — Mary mystery rosary,” she said, “and then I start Ellen Wetter knows how walking. to deal a pretty good “It takes me about an hour and that’s hand with her cards. enough. I have marked every time I go Not the ones with around, and it works out to about four to hearts, clubs, spades and diamonds. five miles.” Her cards are prayer cards. Combs also works out at a gym and Clipped from holy cards, magaenjoys saying her rosary on the treadmill zines, newspapers (including The and while using the recumbent bike. Leaven), emails or bulletins, But when it comes to walking, she of Americans believe Wetter pastes them on note stays inside, even on nice days. cards, punches a hole in them, prayer works no “I do go into that meditative matter what your and clips them on a ring. state where I’m not paying much atreligious affiliation. “I pray for my family and Source: USA Today tention to outer things,” she said. “I friends, and priest friends — I Gallup poll think it’s safer for everyone if I’m not thank God for sending them into on the streets.” my life when I really needed them,” said Wetter, a member of St. Gregory Story by Jill Ragar Esfeld Parish in Marysville. Photo by Doug Hesse It’s hard to say who doesn’t get prayed for by Wetter: clergy, religious, the sick, MARYELLENWETTER t h e elderSt. Gregory, Marysville ly, the poor, the addicted, expectant mothers — you get the idea. It takes a half-hour to get through all the cards in the morning. But it doesn’t stop there. Wetter cleans along with “Living Faith,” a book of Catholic devotions. She reads the daily readings and an accompanying commentary. “It’s a tiny book,” she said. “My sister picks it up from her parish in Hanover.” Her all-purpose go-to prayer is the Hail Mary. “You can’t go wrong with a Hail Mary,” she said. “I pray the Hail Mary when I can my vegetables,” said Wetter. “Every time I say a Hail Mary, my cans almost always seal.” She’s worn out numerous rosary CDs in her car’s player, and never fails to pray a Hail Mary when leaving the farm. She and her husband prayed two standing in a circle, holding hands, praying Hail Marys while planting trees for a for my sister,” said Garcia, adding the sight windbreak. probably surprised several holiday shop“We managed to save over half the pers. But to him, it underscored the need trees in that hot Kansas summer,” said to pray for people when they ask for it. Wetter. “The trees were not planted in Now, when people ask him to pray, good ground, so it’s probably a miracle Garcia drops what he’s doing and, at a minany survived.” imum, prays silently. It’s just one way he Before they built their newer home, integrates prayer in his daily life. the Wetters had an old farmhouse with Garcia is now trying a new Facebook a wood stove — and no homeowner’s outreach he’s calling his “Friday Mass insurance. Instead, she relied on 25 Challenge.” years’ worth of Hail Mary installments. For several weeks, he’s been posting a “I’ve always said Hail Mary was my message, asking friends and family memhome insurance,” she said. “I’m just a bers to join him for Friday morning Mass. Hail Mary enthusiast.” “I try to use Facebook in a good way,” concluded Garcia simply. Story by Joe Bollig


Phone feed finds FB friends in need


OPEKA — For more than 10 years now, Jim Garcia, a member of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish here, has done a regular Holy Hour as part of the parish’s perpetual adoration ministry. About nine months ago, while sitting in the chapel, the avid Facebook fan took a picture and posted it to his page. “I was in a d o r a t i o n ,” JIMGARCIA he said, “and I Our Lady of Guadalupe, Topeka took a picture of the Blessed Sacrament in the monstrance.” He wasn’t sure what to expect, so his expectations were low — which was a good thing. And when his post didn’t garner much of a response, he shrugged it off. But about a month ago, the 57-year-old Garcia decided to try it again. “I was sitting in the parking lot, and I posted that I was getting ready to go to adoration,” said Garcia. He suggested that those who frequented his FB page send him their prayer intentions. This time, said Garcia, the results were amazing. Family and friends sent him all kinds of messages, sharing their hearts and needs. Even the next day, people were sharing messages ranging from the deeply personal to simple statements like, “Pray for me.” One message, in particular, touched his heart. A friend said that her husband had just lost his job that day. She herself was unemployed. With two children at home, she was worried about their future. Crediting the post with giving his Holy Hour new life, he plans to continue posting

similar messages on a regular basis. It’s also one of the ways, he said, he will follow through on his commitment to pray for others when they ask for it, something a friend once modeled for him. Right before Christmas several years ago, he recounted, his oldest sister suffered a stroke, leaving her partially paralyzed. On Christmas Eve, while at Kohl’s, Garcia ran into a friend and his family. After exchanging pleasantries, he shared the news of his sister’s stroke. His friend’s family asked him if he believed in Jesus and the efficacy of prayer. Garcia responded affirmatively and asked them for prayers for his sister. He was surprised when the family immediately started praying. “In the middle of Kohl’s, we were all

Story by Marc and Julie Anderson Photo by Joe McSorley

Photo by Fernando Ugarte



Sales professional - We respect your many years of experience; we value and need your wisdom. We only ask if you are “coachable”? If so, Catholic Cemeteries of Northeast Kansas has openings for sales trainees in our Johnson, Shawnee and Wyandotte County area cemeteries. An excellent earning of $40K to $50K+ in commissions is legitimate income potential for the first year. Training allowance your first 30 days, then draw commission with bonus opportunities. Medical, life, dental, optical, prescription, 401(k) plans, etc., are some of the many perks our employees receive. Excellent opportunities for women and men interested in a sales career and in helping people. Advancement opportunities are available for hard-working and focused individuals. Must be willing to work some evenings and weekends when our client families are available to see us in their homes. Once you learn our formula for success, your schedule is determined by you. Please email your resume and contact information to: dvanthul lenar@cathcemks.org or fax to (913) 353-1413. Adult faith formation coordinator - St. Michael the Archangel in Leawood is seeking an adult faith formation coordinator to work in collaboration with the pastor and the director of Christian formation to develop and implement formation opportunities for the adults of the parish, including the management of the RCIA program and teaching weekly RCIA classes. Evening and weekend hours are required. The preferred candidate will be a practicing Catholic in good standing, a dynamic teacher with experience in the field, articulate and confident in matters of faith, and have an obvious passion for evangelization. A master’s degree in religious education, religious studies or theology is preferred, but we will accept a candidate with a bachelor’s degree who also has experience in leading faith formation programs. This position is eligible for the archdiocesan benefits package, and compensation will be commensurate with experience. Please see the website at: www.stmichaelcp.org for complete details. Assistant principal - St. James Academy is seeking an assistant principal for the 2016-2017 school year. The ideal candidate will be a practicing Catholic with a passion for evangelization and discipleship and will be a licensed and experienced school administrator. The position includes leadership in curriculum, instruction, assessment, student services and the accreditation process. Interested candidates should apply with the Archdiocese of Kansas City by sending an email to the website at: http://arch kck.org/schools/2015/schools7-teacher-application-page. Resumes and cover letters can be sent to principal Karla Leibham at: kleibham@sjakeepingfaith.org. Administrative assistant - The Catholic Education Foundation, an educational ministry of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas, is seeking an experienced full-time administrative assistant to help with the mission of the foundation. This position will provide support to the executive director and other CEF staff. Applicants must be practicing Catholics in good standing, be able to speak authentically about Catholic education, have a bachelor’s degree and have a minimum of five successful years of experience working in an office setting. The ideal candidate must be dependable, work well independently, be self-motivated, detail-oriented and extremely organized. Applicants must demonstrate advanced proficiency in Excel, Word, PowerPoint and database management skills. Proficiency in Raiser’s Edge preferred. Applicants must have effective communication skills to speak compassionately about Catholic education with a variety of constituencies. Interested individuals should email cover letter and resume to: pmorrisey@archkck.org. Fifth-grade teacher - St. Gregory Catholic School is seeking a full-time fifth-grade teacher for the upcoming 2016-2017 school year. Interested applicants should complete the teacher application process online at: kfarrell@ stgregorychurch.org. Administrative assistant/office manager/PT - Looking for something new? Use your experience to help us improve people’s lives. Developmental optometrist needs help with her small practice. M-Th, noon-6 p.m. No benefits. Background in word processing, Excel, QuickBooks, customer service and medical office experience is helpful. Send resume to: Dr. Bazin, 13600 Washington, Kansas City, MO 64145, or send an email to: bbazin@ visiondevelop.com. Drivers - Special Beginnings Early Learning Center is seeking part-time drivers for its school-age program located in Lenexa. Candidates must be able to drive a 13-passenger minibus, similar to a 15-passenger van. CDL not required, but must have an excellent driving record. Candidates would pick up children from area schools and then work directly with them when arriving back at the center. Experience preferred. Must have strong work ethic and the ability to work with children. Insurance provided. Background check will be conducted. Great opportunity for retired persons or those seeking a second job. Job responsibilities include: ensuring safety and well-being of children who are being transported at all times, including loading and unloading. Driving short, round-trip routes to elementary schools in Lenexa/Olathe area. Summer only: Driving short, round- trip routes to two Lenexa city pools. Maintaining mileage log. Keeping interior of vehicle clean. Apply by sending an email to chris@specialbeginnings online.com or in person at 10216 Pflumm Rd., Lenexa, KS 66215. Sign production specialist/production artist - Needed for a sign and graphics company. Full time or part time Monday through Friday. Experience required. Proficiency in Adobe Suites required. Email resume to: jobs@ innovisionsigns.com.

THELEAVEN.ORG Math teacher - Needed full time at a local Catholic middle school. The candidate must be licensed in the state of Kansas for math 6-12 or endorsed math 5-8. Please submit a resume and cover letter along with a copy of your Kansas license to: middlemathteacher@gmail.com. Teaching positions - St. Ann Young Child Center in Prairie Village is seeking to fill three positions for the 2016-2017 school year. Preschool teacher for the four-year-olds class: Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 11:45 a.m. - 3 p.m. Kids’ day out aide position: Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. After-school teacher from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Also looking for substitutes. Competitive pay. Great environment to work. For more information, call Tati at (816) 716-4676. Career opportunity - Due to the success and growth of the Knights of Columbus, we are adding a financial representative in the Kansas City metro, Atchison and Topeka area. Ideal for a determined, high energy, high expectation, professional, self-disciplined, independent individual desiring to serve others, yet earn a better than average income. We provide top-rated financial products to our members and their families and will provide excellent benefits and training. This is a full-time position. Please contact John A. Mahon, general agent, for more information or an interview at 1275 Topeka Blvd., Topeka, KS 66612 or call (785) 408-8806. You can also send an email to: john. mahon@kofc.org. Teacher assistant - Special Beginnings, Lenexa, is seeking full- or part-time after school teacher assistants at all locations. We are looking for a teacher assistant candidate who has an excellent work ethic, heart for children, and a willingness to learn more about early childhood education. Experience and/or education is a plus but we will train the right candidate. Teacher assistants will work with the lead teacher to care for and educate the children. Primary responsibilities include assisting the lead teacher with: care and supervision of children, lesson plan implementation, parent communication, cleanliness and organization of classroom. Starting hourly pay ranges based on experience and education. Pay increases are based on job performance. Opportunities for advancement are available as the company prefers to promote from within. Apply by sending an email to chris@specialbeginningsonline.com or in person at 10216 Pflumm Rd., Lenexa, KS 66215. Drivers needed - Medi Coach Transportation is looking for caring and reliable drivers for nonemergency transportation. CDL is not required. Contact Jeff at (913) 825-1921. Drama teacher - St. James Academy is seeking a faithfilled drama teacher for the 2016-2017 school year. The ideal candidate would be a practicing Catholic and experienced teacher with a passion for the new evangelization and discipleship. Interested candidates should apply with the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas by sending an email to the website at: http://archkck.org/schools/2015/ schools7-teacher-application-page. Resumes and cover letters can be sent to principal Karla Leibham at: kleibham@sjakeepingfaith.org.

SERVICES Bankruptcy consultation - If debts are overwhelming you, seek hope and help from compassionate, experienced Catholic attorney, Teresa Kidd. For a free consultation, call (913) 422-0610; send an email to: tkidd@kc.rr.com; or visit the website at: www.teresakiddlawyer.com. Please do not wait until life seems hopeless before getting good quality legal advice that may solve your financial stress. Agua Fina Irrigation and Landscape The one-stop location for your project! Landscape and irrigation design, Installation and maintenance. Cleanup and grading services It’s time to repair your lawn. 20% discount on lawn renovations with mention of this ad. Visit the website at: www.goaguafina.com Call (913) 530-7260 or (913) 530-5661 Mike Hammer local moving - A full-service mover. Packing, pianos, rental truck load/unload, storage container load/unload, and in-home moving. No job too small. Serving JoCo since 1987. St. Joseph, Shawnee, parishioner. Call Mike at (913) 927-4347 or send an email to: mike@mike hammermoving.com. Rodman Lawn Care Lawn mowing, aeration, verticutting. Hedge trimming, mulch, leaf removal. Fully insured and free estimates. John Rodman (913) 548-3002 American Girl doll Communion dresses - First Communion dress sets for 18” or American Girl dolls. Includes dress, veil, shoes, tights and cross necklace. Full line of doll clothes and accessories in south Johnson County. Call Patty at (913) 345-9498. Clutter getting you down? - Organize, fix, assemble, install! “Kevin of all trades” your professional organizer and “Honey-do” specialist. Call today for a free consultation at (913) 271-5055. Insured. References. Visit our website at: www.KOATINDUSTRIES.com. Quilted memories - Your Kansas City Longarm shop Nolting Longarm machines, quilting supplies and machine quilting services. We specialize in memorial quilts - custom designed memory quilts from your T-shirt collections, photos, baby clothes, college memorabilia, neckties, etc. For information or to schedule a free consultation, call (913) 6492704. Visit the website at: www.quiltedmemoriesllc.com.

Cleaning lady - Reasonable rates; references provided. Call (913) 940-2959. Garage door and opener sales and service - 24-hour, 7-day-a-week service on all types of doors. Replace broken spring rollers, gate openers, entry and patio doors and more. Over 32 years of experience. Call (913) 227-4902.

HOME IMPROVEMENT Swalms organizing - downsizing - cleanout service – Reduce clutter – Any space organized. Shelving built onsite. Items hauled for recycling and donations. 20 years exp.; insured. Call Tillar at (913) 375-9115. WWW.SWALMS ORGANIZING.COM. The Drywall Doctor, Inc. - A unique solution to your drywall problems! We fix all types of ceiling and wall damage — from water stains and stress cracks to texture repairs and skim coating. We provide professional, timely repairs and leave the job site clean! Lead-certified and insured! Serving the metro since 1997. Call (913) 768-6655. Helping Hand Handy Man - Home maintenance chores available by the hour. Special rate for senior and singleparent households. Electrical, painting, wood refinishing, deck repair, yard work, shelving and organizing. Most home problems and needs solved. Member of Prince of Peace, Olathe. Call Mark Coleman at (913) 526-4490. Thank you for another great year - Through your support, my family has been blessed and my business has grown. We do windows, trim, siding, doors, decks, interior and exterior painting, wood rot, bathroom renovation, tile and sheetrock. If you need work done around your home, we can do it. Josh (913) 709-7230. DRC Construction We’ll get the job done right the first time. Windows - Doors - Decks - Siding Repair or replace, we will work with you to solve your problems. Choose us for any window, door, siding or deck project and you’ll be glad you did. Everything is guaranteed 100% (913) 461-4052 www.windowservicesoverlandpark.com drcconswindows@gmail.com Detail construction and remodeling - We offer a full line of home remodeling services. Don’t move — remodel! Johnson County area. Call for a free quote at (913) 7098401. Rusty Dandy Painting, Inc. - We have been coloring your world for 40 years. Your home will be treated as if it were our own. Old cabinets will be made to look like new. Dingy walls and ceilings will be made beautiful. Woodwork will glow. Lead-certified and insured. Call (913) 341-9125. Masonry work - Quality new or repair work. Brick, block and chimney/fireplace repair. Insured; second-generation bricklayer. Member of St. Paul Parish, Olathe. Call (913) 829-4336. EL SOL Y LA TIERRA *Commercial & residential * Lawn renovation *Mowing * Clean-up and hauling * Dirt grading/installation * Landscape design * Free estimates Hablamos y escribimos Ingles!! www.elsolylatierra.com Call Lupe at (816) 252-1391 Local handyman and lawn care – Water heaters, garbage disposals, toilets, faucets, painting, power washing, doors, storm doors, gutter cleaning, wood rot, mowing, carpet, roofing, etc. Member of Holy Angels Parish, Basehor. Call Billy at (913) 927-4118. NELSON CREATIONS L.L.C. Home remodeling, design/build, kitchens, baths, all interior and exterior work. Family owned and operated; over 25 years experience. Licensed and insured; commercial and residential. Kirk and Diane Nelson. (913) 927-5240; nelsport@everestkc.net

MAY 13, 2016

House painting Interior and exterior; wallpaper removal. Power washing, fences, decks. 30 years experience. References. Reasonable rates. Call Joe at (913) 620-5776.

CAREGIVING Personalized care - Experienced, specializing in dementia, medication setup and activities of daily living. Excellent references. Contact Andrea at (913)548-1930. Caregiving - We provide personal assistance, companionship, care management, and transportation for seniors in their home, assisted living or nursing facilities. We also provide respite care for main caregivers needing some personal time. Call Daughters & Company at (913) 341-2500 and speak with Laurie, Pat or Gary. Team of girls - For around-the-clock care or available for one-on-one care with the same caregiver for morning, noon or night help. We care for your loved one just like family. Excellent references. Call Kara at (913) 909-6659. Looking for high quality home care? - Whether you’re looking to introduce care for your family or simply looking to improve your current home care quality, we can help. Our unique approach to home care has earned us a 99% client satisfaction rating among the 1,000-plus families we have assisted. We are family-owned, with offices in Lenexa and Lawrence. Call Benefits of Home Senior Care, Lenexa: (913) 422-1591 or Lawrence: (785) 727-1816 or www.benefitsofhome.com. CNA, home health care professional - Provides TLC in the comfort of the client’s residence. Budget friendly. Available 24 hours, or part time. Excellent references. 25 years of seasoned experience. Nonsmoker. Call (816) 806-8104.

FOR SALE Residential lifts - Buy/sell/trade. Stair lifts, porch lifts, ceiling lifts and elevators. Recycled and new equipment. Member of St. Michael the Archangel Parish, Leawood. Call Silver Cross KC at (913) 327-5557. Resurrection Cemetery - Crypt for sale. Mausoleum: Corridor Prince of Peace Chapel, tier C, crypt #2 - $5500. For more information, call (405) 413-2716. For Sale - One lot at Resurrection Cemetery, Charity Garden. Includes vault with opening and closing. Call Chuck or Joan at (913) 327-1316.

TRAVEL Extraordinary Year of Mercy pilgrimage to Spain Father Josh Litwack is hosting a pilgrimage to Spain September 5-15. Through the centuries, mystical Spain has given us great saints and many shrines of interest to Catholics. Visit places of history, the Prado in Madrid, eat Spanish food, experience flamenco dancing. There will be daily Mass. To reserve your place on the pilgrimage, contact Father Litwack at (918) 671-4769 or Donna Litwack at (918) 639-5895 or visit the website at: catholic traveltoday.com. Blessed Mother Teresa’s canonization pilgrimage - In this extraordinary Year of Mercy, experience the canonization of Blessed Mother Teresa and the opportunity to pass through the great Holy Doors of Rome. Father Sean Donovan, Tulsa, invites you to join him on a nine-day pilgrimage to Italy visiting: San Giovanni, Lanciano, Loreto, Assisi and Orvieto. Aug. 29 to Sept. 6, 2016. Fly R/T from KCI. For complete itinerary and pricing, visit the website at: www. catholictraveltoday.com or call (918) 237-5373.


Kansas City’s Premier Deck, Fence & Concrete - We repair, power wash and stain wood decks and fences. We power wash and seal concrete drives, walkways, pool decks and more. Call Brian at (913) 952-5965; Holy Trinity parishioner.

Wanted to buy - Antique/vintage jewelry, lighters, fountain pens, post card collections, paintings/prints, pottery, sterling, china dinnerware. Renee Maderak, (913) 631-7179. St. Joseph Parish, Shawnee

STA (Sure Thing Always) Home Repair - Basement finish, bathrooms and kitchens; interior & exterior repairs: painting, roofing, siding, wood replacement and window glazing. Free estimates. Call (913) 491-5837 or (913) 5791835. Email: smokeycabin@hotmail.com. Member of Holy Trinity, Lenexa.

Will buy firearms and related accessories - One or a whole collection. Honest evaluation and top prices paid. Contact Tom at (913) 238-2473. Member of Sacred Heart Parish, Shawnee.

HARCO Exteriors LLC Your Kansas City fencing specialists Family owned and operated (913) 815-4817 www.harcoexteriorsllc.com Custom countertops - Laminates installed within 5 days. Cambria, granite, and solid surface. Competitive prices, dependable work. Call the Top Shop, Inc., (913) 962-5058. Members of St. Joseph, Shawnee. Concrete construction - Tear out and replace stamped, stained or colored patios and drives. Retaining walls, footings, poured-in-place safe rooms, excavation and hauling. Asphalt drives and lots. Fully insured; references. Call Dan at (913) 207-4371 or send an email to: dandeeconst@aol.com.

Wanted to buy - I’m Mark Edmondson, a local parishioner at Holy Trinity, and I buy and sell houses in any condition. If you have a house “situation,” call me. I might have a solution for you. (913) 980-4905.

VACATION Colorado vacation - Granby, Winter Park, 2 BR, kitchen, sleeps six. Pet OK. www.inn@silvercreek.com. June 25 - July 2. July 2 - July 9. $600 per week. Call (913) 6497596.



“We come to You” Scooters - Stairlifts - Wheelchairs (913) 859-0290 www.chucksmobility.com

Concrete Work

Any type of repair and new work Driveways, Walks, Patios Member of Queen of the Holy Rosary Parish

Harvey M. Kascht (913) 262-1555

Stair lifts & More We’ll lift you up! Scooter/bath/wheelchair/pool Free consults. Leaven discounts! Member Good Shepherd, Shawnee

Call Ed Toll Free 1-855-543-8632

Wagner’s Mud-Jacking Co.

Specializing in Foundation Repairs Mud-jacking and Waterproofing. Serving Lawrence, Topeka and surrounding areas. Topeka (785) 233-3447 Lawrence (785) 749-1696 In business since 1963 www.foundationrepairks.com

K E A T I N G Mud Jacking FOUNDATION REPAIR Cracked • Bowed • Settled Wall Repair v Wall Bracing v Waterproofing v Steel Underpinning Kansas City (913) 262-9352

MUD JACKING Raise & Level

v Patios v Drives v Garage Floors v Slab Houses Lawrence (785) 865-0006

Topeka (785) 246-0128

TERRY EICH INSURANCE Independent Insurance Agency

Specializing in • Lowcost Medicare suplemental policies • Longterm care policies • Life insurance • Final expense policys Member of Church of the Ascension in Overland Park (913) 634-4874 • agricareLLC@netscape.net




MAY 13, 2016

Finding ‘alone time’ with Christ


ONGANOXIE — One evening about 10 years ago, while running through her neighborhood, Starla Scott noticed a man running and making the sign of the cross the entire time. She wondered what he was focusing on. What was his prayer? What was his motivation? In the end, the exact details didn’t matter. STARLASCOTT “I realized Sacred Heart, Tonganoxie he was focusing on Christ the whole time,” she said. “I thought that was a really good idea.” So Scott started praying while running. Running had made her feel better physically and mentally for years. Now it makes her feel better spiritually. “I like having that time alone with God, where I can speak to him,” she said. “And I can speak out loud if I want to because there’s usually not anybody around.” Scott works at Saint Luke’s Cushing Hospital in Leavenworth as a clinical lab scientist. Because hospital work can be stressful, Scott runs before work. Often, her thoughts and prayers are with her patients. “I pray that I’m able to touch their lives and be a positive person that they see when they are not feeling well,” she said.

“I also pray for God to give me the wisdom and know-how to take the best care of them,” she added. Story by Todd Habiger Photo by Lori Wood Habiger

Searching father finds answers in prayer


ORNING — Five years ago, David Steinlage of St. Patrick Parish here lived every parent’s worst nightmare. One of his four children

died. Just short of her fourth birthday, Steinlage’s daughter Ava lost her battle with cancer. Although Steinlage’s family experienced tremendous grief, her death set him on a path to learn more about God. “I started asking questions about tice, based on Mother Teresa’s example. heaven,” She often asks Mary to intercede for the Steinlage DAVIDSTEINLAGE people she’s visiting. said, “what St. Patrick, Corning “I’ll pray for the patient, or pray for any it was like, sort of words of wisdom that maybe they and such. I need to hear,” she said. wanted to expand my faith. I wanted to If she passes a cemetery, she prays for learn more. the souls in purgatory. And on longer trips, “I wanted to know the answer to the she leaves the petitions up to Mary. question, ‘Where is my daughter?’” “I offer my prayer to whatever needs Eventually, Steinlage determined Mary feels are the greatest in the world — through conversations with his for that particular day,” she said. of Catholics’ colleagues at John Deere where he Riley believes praying while drivprayer is a personal works as an engineer, and friends conversation with ing is the perfect antidote to road God. around town — that the Bible had rage. Source: Pew the answer to his questions. But “When you’re praying the rosary,” Research Center the Bible overwhelmed him. she said, “it’s really hard to get mad at “It was like we often say at work anyone who cuts you off.” with a big project — [it’s] an elephant,” Praying is also the perfect remedy he said. “And the question we always when feeling rushed while driving. ask ourselves is, ‘How are we going to “Whenever you feel you can’t get eat an elephant?’” someplace quick enough,” she said, The answer might seem obvious. “sometimes that’s God’s way of saying, One eats an elephant in the same way ‘You know what, I’ll get you there. Just as any other food — one bite at a time. take it easy.’ A colleague told Steinlage that if he “‘Turn off your radio and say a prayer.’” wanted to study the Bible, he should start by studying the words of Christ in Story by Jill Ragar Esfeld the Gospels. One way he decided to do Photo by Lori Wood Habiger

Turn off the radio and pray


ENEXA — A daily rosary seemed like a positive Lenten devotion to Linda Riley. But with a busy schedule as a nurse at Providence Medical Center in Kansas City, Kansas, she wondered how she could fit the devotion into her day. As “Providence” would have it, the drive to work was exactly 20 minutes. LINDARILEY “Which was just Holy Trinity, Lenexa enough time to say a rosary,” said the Holy Trinity, Lenexa, parishioner. The practice became a habit. And even though Riley no longer works at the medical center, she still prays whenever she’s traveling in her car. “I’m a home health nurse now,” she said. “So I don’t have as much time [in the car].” Riley heard about Mother Teresa of Calcutta saying Memorare novenas to ask the Blessed Mother for quick intervention. “I thought that was pretty cool,” she said. “I thought I could do that between houses.” And so Riley tweaked her prayer prac-


that, said Steinlage, was by subscribing to a daily email from Regnum Christi. It gave him a Scripture passage each day to reflect on, as well as some prayer petitions and action points for the day. As a telecommuter, Steinlage has some flexibility in his schedule. Most mornings, he reads the daily Gospel and accompanying mediation before starting work. After reading the meditations on his own for six to nine months, he decided to share them with his religious education classes. He didn’t expect introducing high school students to Scripture study would be easy, but his elephant parties — complete with a cake baked in the shape of an elephant — was a good start. As the students eat the cake, he discusses the Bible with them, sharing with them that it can be like an elephant — difficult and overwhelming at first. He also explains to them that he has a way for them to eat the elephant — a bite at a time. Then, he signs up the kids for the daily meditations. “After Ava went to heaven, I realized I hadn’t learned enough about my faith, and I needed to spend more time with my wife and family,” he said. Ava’s death made him realize he not only wanted to do well at work, but wanted to be so much more. “I want to be a great dad, a great husband and a great community leader,” he said. “If I start the day with that email, my day goes that much better.” Story by Marc and Julie Anderson Photo by Fernando Ugarte

Profile for The Leaven

05-13-16 Vol. 37 No. 38  

The Leaven is the newspaper for the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.

05-13-16 Vol. 37 No. 38  

The Leaven is the newspaper for the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.

Profile for theleaven

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