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THELEAVEN.ORG | VOL. 41, NO. 30 | MARCH 13, 2020

REVAMPED REVS GAME ENDS IN A THRILLER Photos by Lori Wood Habiger

t St. James senior J.D. Reece guards against St. James chaplain Father Mark Ostrowski in the Running with the Revs basketball game on March 9 at St. James Academy. t Father Justin Hamilton, associate pastor at St. Joseph Parish, Shawnee, runs off the court in celebration after a buzzer-beating layup by teammate Brian Jacobson gave his team a 58-57 win.

By Todd Habiger todd.habiger@theleaven.org

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ENEXA — Nuns on the court. Cheerleaders shooting free throws. Even $100 3pointers. What in the name of LeBron James is going on here? Welcome to the all-new, all-different Running with the Revs basketball game. The annual game, sponsored by the Serra Club to promote vocations and benefit seminarians, underwent a major change this year — namely, priests and students are now playing on the same team. The change was well-received and the action on the court was top-notch. “I think with the new format, the new place (St. James Academy, Lenexa) and the new crowd, there was an increased energy,” said Father Dan Morris, archdiocesan vocations director. “The way the game ended up going — that close, tight game — I could see both teams and the crowd getting into it and feeding into that. That’s what I call a success.” Seminarian Brian Jacobson enjoyed the new format as well. “It was fun. I feel like I got to know the kids better. I know for me, when I was thinking about the seminary, playing basketball with the seminarians was one of the ways I related to them. It was more personal. We weren’t against them, we were with them, so I liked that,” he said. Before the game, an anonymous donor offered $50 for each 3-point shot made.

Soon after the game started, another donor offered to match that amount, resulting in $100 being donated per 3-pointer. More than 10 3-pointers were made on the night. What the team names lacked in originality — Team Black versus Team White? Come on, man — they made up for in excitement on the court. Team White, coached by St. James head basketball coach Stan Dohm, looked like they might run away >> See “NEW” on page 4

t Church of the Nativity eighth-grader Aidan Ryan pulls up for a threepointer against Team Black. Two anonymous donors pledged $50 for each 3-pointer made. More than 10 treys were made during the game, raising more than $1,000 for seminarians.


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

ARCHBISHOP

Pray for our health care professionals working to protect us all

C

oncern about the coronavirus continues to dominate the news. Last week’s Leaven included an article about guidelines that had been sent to parishes and schools on prudent prevention efforts to protect against the spread of the coronavirus, as well as other respiratory viruses like the flu. As of the writing of this article, Kansas remains a low-risk area for contracting the coronavirus. I want to assure you as the threat of the coronavirus in our community continues to unfold, the archdiocese will reassess our guidance to parishes and follow faithfully the directions of public health officials to minimize the potential risk to our parishioners and students. For the current flu season (Oct. 1, 2019 - Feb. 29, 2020) the Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates: 1) between 34 million to 49 million Americans have contracted the flu; 2) resulting in 16-23 million medical visits and 350,000 - 620,000 hospitalizations; and 3) causing 20,000 - 52,000 flu-related deaths. The coronavirus has attracted much more attention because it is both new and appears to have a significantly higher mortality rate

LIFE WILL BE VICTORIOUS ARCHBISHOP JOSEPH F. NAUMANN compared to the flu. However, in South Korea, where there has been a massive effort to test for the virus, the death rate is much lower. There is good news and bad news in this fact. The bad news is that this suggests there are probably more cases of coronavirus in our country than have been detected. The good news is that coronavirus is much less lethal than current statistics suggest. Just as for the flu, those most at risk are the elderly or those with pre-existing, compromising health conditions. But according to the CDC, the virus is capable of spreading easily and sustainably in the community, so that is an additional cause of concern. I am not a medical

doctor or health expert. For the best medical advice, I encourage you to check nationally the CDC website and locally the Kansas Department for Health — kdheks. gov — and click on the COVID-19 icon. At the same time, our Catholic faith provides insight and wisdom on how to understand and respond to this most recent health scare. As Catholics, we believe that through the waters of baptism, our bodies became temples of God. We carry the very life of God within us. We are called to care for our bodies with the same reverence that we give to a church or tabernacle. This requires that we use prudence in doing our best to care for these living temples — our bodies. Our faith also challenges us to recognize our fellow Christians as living temples of God, as well as to respect every human being who in the eyes of God, no matter their religious beliefs,

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is of such value that Jesus shed his blood on Calvary. Thus, we owe every other human being the reverence for one whom Jesus considered to be worthy of his enduring the crucifixion. We are called to do what is prudently possible in protecting the health and well-being of every other human being with whom we share planet earth. This requires us to observe the practices suggested by public health officials to protect others from unnecessary risks. When we are sick and contagious, we should not go to Mass, lest we infect someone else with a virus that could place them at serious risk. At the same time, Our Lord counsels us in every circumstance to be not afraid. As Catholics, we naturally are concerned about our own health, the health of those we love and the health of every human being. At the same time, while we are not immune to infectious diseases, we should be immune to panic and fear. For those who do not believe in God or heaven, it is natural to cling desperately to life in this world and to attempt futilely to eliminate all possible risks. Our Catholic faith forms us to treasure

our bodies and care for them prudently, while at the same time to be courageous in our efforts to bring God’s love and hope to the sick, the dying and the despairing. Throughout the church’s history, there are examples of countless saints — St. Damien of Molokai, St. Marianne Cope, Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos, St. Elizabeth of Hungary, St. Camillus de Lellis, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, St. John of God, to name only a few — who risked their own health and lives in caring for the sick and the suffering. Now, during this time of concern about public health risks, we are more aware than ever of the importance of doctors, nurses, health care workers and those charged with protecting the public health of our nation and local communities. Let us pray that Our Lord will guard them as they both care for the sick and strive to protect our communities. As we prepare for the great feast of Easter, we trust in Our Lord, the divine physician, who healed so many during his life and ministry, but who ultimately came to conquer death and give us the sure and certain hope of life forever with him and all the saints. With this blessed assurance, we can be both prudent and fearless. Be not afraid!

ARCHBISHOP NAUMANN March 13- 14 Conception board of regents meeting March 16 “Shepherd’s Voice” recording March 17 Priests Personnel meeting Administrative Team meeting Benedictine College fireside chat dinner and discussion March 19 Confirmation — St. Matthew, Topeka March 21 Annual anointing Mass and reception — Curé of Ars, Leawood, (Archbishop Naumann, celebrant; Bishop Johnston, homilist) Benedictine College Symposium on Advancing the New Evangelization and dinner

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MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

LOCAL NEWS

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‘Our hearts couldn’t let that happen’ Couple keeps Seneca bookstore/gathering place going

By Katie Peterson Special to the Leaven

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ENECA — When members of Linda Broxterman’s rosary group mentioned that there was no place to buy Christianthemed books in Seneca, it sparked an idea. “One night, I just kind of drove around, found the building, found the merchandise,” Broxterman said. “I just kept putting one foot in front of the other and kept saying, ‘I can do this. I can do this.’” Broxterman did do it, opening the Soul Provider Christian Book and Gift Store on Nov. 25, 1994, located at 521 Main St. in Seneca. And, with the help of volunteers, it has served the Seneca community for the past 25 years. But, now, due to Broxterman’s recently declining health, it was questionable whether the store would be able remain open. That’s when she turned to Julie Strathman. “I went on a scouting trip,” said Broxterman. “And the name [that] just kept coming back to me was Julie; I just couldn’t shake it.” When it turned out Strathman would, indeed, purchase the store, Broxterman couldn’t have been happier. “I was just thrilled that I was able to sell it in the first place,” Broxterman said. And she was just as delighted with who bought it. “I knew she was the right one for it,” said Broxterman. Strathman said she had reservations when Broxterman first approached her. “I’m still working full time as a school psychologist, and I kind of put her off,” Strathman said. “But when her health reasons came up, and there was a chance the store was going to close completely, [my husband and I] just didn’t feel that our hearts could let that happen.” Strathman and her husband Leroy officially took ownership of Soul Provider on Feb. 1. Following a month of renovations, which included fresh paint and a more rustic feel, the store had a soft opening Feb. 29 and will host a grand opening celebration March 28. “I knew there was a need in the community,” Strathman said. “We have an army of people [helping out]. It is still being run by volunteers, so that is how strongly the community feels about keeping this store here. “I can’t believe the support we have gotten to continue Linda’s mission.” Broxterman said that after opening the store, she realized the needs of the community went far beyond books and gifts. “People come in and, invariably, they have a brother or an uncle or somebody that has just found out they have cancer [or some other challenge],” she said. “And, more than anything, they just want to talk,” Broxterman continued.

“After that happened a few times, they’d come in, and they’d ask for me. “I was doing part-time counseling . . . and, really, with prayer, I was able to find something for them. It means so much to me that I did it.” With that in mind, Strathman said she plans to incorporate that more into the store with Grace in Your Corner, an idea that stems from a mission begun by her oldest son Cory. Grace in Your Corner will provide a space for people who need support and will provide resources or just someone to talk to, Strathman said. “We’re not professional counselors, but there are resources there and people that can connect you with other people if you are looking for that,” Strathman said. “We’re not sure what that’s all going to entail, but we’ve gotten a lot of support from local agencies and hospitals that want to partner with us and make sure we get people the help that they need. “It’s just knowing that there is someone who cares. If you want to tell them your story, somebody will be there to listen.” Broxterman said she’s honored that Strathman is so dedicated to continuing the mission she began 25 years ago. “That means everything to me. I

President Most Rev. Joseph F. Naumann

Publication No. (ISSN0194-9799)

Soul Provider Christian Book and Gift Store was opened on Nov. 25, 1994, in Seneca, by Linda Broxterman (right). Due to health issues, Broxterman has sold the store to Julie Strathman. With the change in ownership, Soul Provider will host a grand opening celebration March 28.

did not expect that,” Broxterman said. “I am just astounded by what’s she’s doing, and I’m just so happy about it. It is an honor that I didn’t think I’d ever have.” Soul Provider Christian Book and Gift Store is open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. The store is closed Sunday and Monday. The grand opening is 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 28 and will begin with a ribbon cutting and reception honoring Broxterman and the volunteers who have kept the store running. But it won’t be the only chance for the community to see Broxterman. “She’s not finished,” Strathman said. “She plans to come down and hang out at the store. “And we hope she does, because people still want to come down and see Linda!”

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

Production Manager Todd Habiger todd.habiger@theleaven.org

Advertising Coordinator Beth Blankenship beth.blankenship@theleaven.org

Managing Editor Anita McSorley anita.mcsorley@theleaven.org

Senior Reporter Joe Bollig joe.bollig@theleaven.org

Social Media Editor/Reporter Moira Cullings moira.cullings@theleaven.org

Published weekly September through May, excepting the Friday the week after Thanksgiving, and the Friday after Christmas; biweekly June through August. Address communications to: The Leaven, 12615 Parallel Pkwy., Kansas City, KS 66109. Phone: (913) 721-1570; fax: (913) 721-5276; or e-mail at: sub@theleaven.com. Postmaster: Send address changes to The Leaven, 12615 Parallel Pkwy., Kansas City, KS 66109. For change of address, provide old and new address and parish. Subscriptions $21/year. Periodicals postage paid at Kansas City, KS 66109.


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

LOCAL NEWS

4

Irish Catholic leads the way on St. Patrick’s Day By Jill Ragar Esfeld jill.esfeld@theleaven.org

Join in the fun of Irish road bowling!

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RAIRIE VILLAGE — “I’ve got a 1931 Ford convertible with a rumble seat in the back,” said St. Ann parishioner Brian O’Laughlin. “And I’m riding in that with signs on the side. “I’ll be in the St. Patrick’s Day Shawnee parade, the Brookside parade and the downtown parade.” The “signs on the side” will tout O’Laughlin’s honor as Hibernian of the Year, and he’ll be leading the way for the Father Bernard Donnelly Division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in each parade. It’s an impressive group to set in motion. “We have our honor guard who are all in kilts,” said president Zach Kittle, a member of Holy Cross Parish in Overland Park. “We march with the Irish flag, American flag and Vatican flag. “And then we have a group of guys behind us with all Irish flags and then all of our families ride on Governor Stumpy’s fire truck that follows us down the road.” The Hibernians are a fraternal organization of Catholic men that promote Irish culture and support the Catholic Church. The Father Bernard Donnelly Division received its charter in 2002. With more than 100 members, the organization is well known in the area for its charity and volunteerism. “We meet at the Lucky Brew Grill in Mission,” said O’Laughlin. “Most of our priests show up to our meetings, and that’s pretty cool.” Because of its namesake’s commitment to Catholic education, that is a primary cause for the Father Donnelly division. “Christian charity is the cornerstone of what we do,” said O’Laughlin. “In addition to our volunteer work, we give out scholarships to eighth-graders going to Catholic high schools every year. “We also support SAFE (Surviving Spouse and Family Endowment) that takes care of families of fallen first re-

“This road bowling thing in an absolute scream,” said Brian O’Laughlin, Hibernian of the Year. “We do a course that’s about a mile and a half, and you roll this [cannon ball]; and if you happen to drag a cooler of beverages with you, that’s OK, too. “Anybody is welcome. It’s really pretty fun.” Road bowling has been described as “golf with a cannon ball” and has been played in Ireland since the 1600s. Teams of four hurl a cannon ball toward a finish line and the team with the lowest number of throws, wins. The next Irish road bowling tournament, sponsored by the Father Bernard Donnelly Division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, will take place on April 25 at Wyandotte County Park. If road bowling sounds like a fun way to spend your Saturday, learn more about it or register a team online at: www.ksroadbowling.com.

LEAVEN PHOTO BY JILL RAGAR ESFELD

St. Ann parishioner Brian O’Laughlin has been honored as Hibernian of the Year. The Hibernians are a fraternal organization of Catholic men that promotes Irish culture and supports the Catholic Church. sponders. And we support the Duchesne Clinic (in Kansas City, Kansas).” O’Laughlin is humble about his distinction as Hibernian of the Year. “There are other people equally qualified for the honor,” he said. “It just

happened to be my year, I guess.” Kittle is clearer about the reason for the choice. “Brian is a great guy who shows up and helps out whenever he’s needed,” he said. “He’s all about the organization

New format a success for annual priests basketball game >> Continued from page 1

The excitement of Running with the Revs kept even the smallest of fans on the edges of their seats.

with the game. With some sharp shooting and strong inside play, they stretched the lead into double digits well into the second half. But Team Black, coached by St. James Academy head football coach Tom Radke, mounted a furious comeback, helped in no small part by some questionable calls from the referees. “The refs did try to cultivate a closer contest as the game went on, but it was all in good sportsmanship and fun,” said Father Morris. At the eight-minute mark of the game, Sister Bridget Martin, FSGM, came onto the court as a celebrity freethrow shooter and tied the game up at 45 each. From there, the battle was on. Each time Team White would threaten to pull away, Team Black would knock down a 3-pointer or receive a favorable foul call keep the game close. With less than 20 seconds left in the

game, Team Black, down by one point, pulled down a missed free throw by Team White and pushed the ball up the court. With time running out, Jacobson found a clear path to the basket and hit the game-winning layup as time expired, giving Team Black a 58-57 win. “We had just one shot left,” said Jacobson of his game-winning shot. “I decided to go for it all and it went in.” For Team Black member J.D. Reece, a senior at St. James, the game was more fun than he could have imagined. “I was just out there having fun,” he said. “It was super cool to see all the different guys — middle school, high school, priests — playing together. Playing with the priests this year on the same teams was so much fun. That was the smartest move they could have made.” Reece said the hot crowd made for a great game environment and made a lasting impression on him. “That was one of the best nights I’ve ever had here at St. James,” he said.

and helping promote it — making sure we’ve got good guys coming into the organization and making sure we’re bringing back guys who have been in our organization and have maybe fallen away.” O’Laughlin also hosts the group’s Christmas party and is a key volunteer in the group’s biggest yearly fundraiser — Irish road bowling (see sidebar). But if asked what he likes best about the organization, O’Laughlin is quick to laud the group’s catholicity. “We begin and end each of our meetings with prayers,” he said. “We offer up the intentions of our families and friends and people who need prayer support. “When one of our members dies, we all go to the funeral and say a rosary expressing to the people that both his Irish heritage and Catholic faith are important.”

Father Gaitley coming to Benedictine

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TCHISON — Nationally known best-selling author Father Michael Gaitley, MIC, is coming to Benedictine College here as part of his Greater Glory Tour on March 18 at 7 p.m. in O’Malley-McAllister Auditorium. He will be talking about finding the Father in the Gospel of John based on his latest book, “33 Days to Greater Glory.” The event is free and open to the public.

Father Albertson dies Father Lawrence D. Albertson, 81, a retired priest of the archdiocese living in Lawrence, died on March 9. Visitation will be on March 13 at 9:30 a.m., followed by a funeral Mass at 10:30 a.m. at Queen of the Holy Rosary Parish in Bucyrus-Wea. Burial will be in the parish cemetery. An obituary will appear in the next issue of The Leaven.


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

LOCAL NEWS

5

CNS PHOTO/REMO CASILLI, REUTERS

A priest celebrates Mass outside a Rome church March 8 after Italy’s bishops ordered Masses not be held inside in order to contain the coronavirus outbreak. Because of the outbreak, students from St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Overland Park and St. James Academy in Lenexa had to cancel their trips to Rome.

Coronavirus cancels high schools’ trips to Rome

By Moira Cullings moira.cullings@theleaven.org

Urgent: Coronavirus info for the archdiocese

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VERLAND PARK — Anna Ketelle has been eagerly anticipating the St. Thomas Aquinas High School senior spring break trip to Rome since her sister went in 2014. “I was most looking forward to visiting the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica and seeing the Vatican,” she said. “But, also, [I was looking forward to] just getting to go with my classmates and my teachers and growing in community that way,” she continued. Unfortunately, Ketelle won’t be going to Rome this month, and neither will any of her classmates. The trip was canceled at the beginning of March after a difficult decision, but one that was agreed upon by all involved, due to the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). “Ultimately, as things have escalated in Italy, it became apparent to the administration and chaperones that it wasn’t the safest decision for our students to go,” said Sarah Cretors, trip coordinator and campus minister at Aquinas. “The decision became easier to make,” she said, as more information came out of Italy. The Aquinas decision was also made with the larger Kansas City community in mind, said Cretors, who explained the students could potentially be quarantined upon their return home or give others the virus without knowing it. Although the 26 seniors signed up to go on the trip were disappointed,

Archdiocesan guidelines to prevent the spread of coronavirus have now become directives. Please go to: www.archkcks.com/coronavirus for the latest.

CNS PHOTO/FOTOGRAMMA/IPA/ABACAPRESS.COMNO VIA REUTERS

A worker sprays disinfectant to combat the coronavirus in the Basilica of San Domenico Maggiore in Naples, Italy, March 6. The suspension of public Masses in Italy is a painful yet necessary measure to protect people’s health, the country’s bishops said in a March 8 statement. Cretors said their reaction was one of maturity. “I think it’d be easy for them to get frustrated and take it out on me or whoever’s communicating the information,” she said. “But they’ve just been really understanding, and I think they know it’s kind of out of our control.” What helped Ketelle deal with the disappointment was a prayer said by Aquinas chaplain Father Dan Weger: “Lord, if it’s your will, let us go.” “Hearing that prayer gave us reassurance that everything’s part of a greater plan,” said Ketelle. “Right now, I don’t get to go. But I know that in the

future I might get another opportunity. “Having that has brought a lot of peace to the whole situation.” Ketelle said she and her classmates have hopes to visit Rome together this summer, but definitely plan on going out for Italian food at some point during their spring break. Father Anthony Saiki, who is currently studying canon law in Rome, was also looking forward to seeing the group from Aquinas, as well as a group from St. James Academy in Lenexa, who also canceled its class trip to Rome. “But that was a very prudent decision,” he said. “Rome is very quiet. It

feels like a ghost town. “The regional quarantines in the north and the suspension of Masses countrywide certainly aren’t helping to calm a very nervous situation.” On March 9, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann spoke with Father Saiki and suggested he return home. Father Saiki plans to come back to Kansas City and stay until after Easter. At press time, Italy was experiencing the largest coronavirus outbreak outside Asia. As of March 10, more than 9,100 people in Italy had tested positive for the virus and nearly 500 had died. On March 9, the Italian prime minister had extended the lockdown to the entire country, which included travel restrictions, school and university closings, and canceled sporting events. The severity of the situation makes the school trip cancellation even more understandable for Ketelle and her classmates. “Obviously, we’re upset,” she said, “but we know that our safety is the number one priority.” “We are more worried about the people who are there right now,” she added. “We’re worried for everyone who’s affected.”


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

FAMILY LIFE

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Catholics turn Lenten deprivation into joyous penance

ent is a time for prayer, penance and piling mounds of spaghetti on fried

fish. Listen, I’m as surprised to have written that sentence as you may be to have read it. The Catholic fish fry is a unique cultural phenomenon and, in particular, the St. Louis Catholic fish fry is without compare. When I first encountered it, I quickly realized how out of my depth I am. Sure, I have a master of divinity and can read Greek, but at fish fry I’m surrounded by expertlevel Catholics who continue to school me on the art of how to do Lent right. The fish fry is a celebration of community solidarity, and to do it right is a delicate act. It’s the season of fasting, but you still have your choice of a Bud Light or sweet wine in a plastic cup. Maybe a bit of gooey butter cake won’t be too much? Definitely pair the fried — don’t even say the word “baked” or you’ll get chased out of the gym — fish with

FATHER MICHAEL RENNIER Father Michael Rennier graduated from Yale Divinity School and lives in St. Louis with his wife and five children. He was ordained a Catholic priest through the pastoral provision for former Episcopal clergymen that was created by Pope St. John Paul II.

spaghetti. After all, we’re not barbarians. Oh, and hey, over by the takeout line is the men’s club selling raffle tickets. The priest is usually posted up by the drink station or the dessert table and amiably chats with parishioners. Kids are hiding under the bleachers and the parking lot is mayhem. This is Catholicism,

and I love it. There’s something really amazing about people who are so serious about penance that they turn it into a celebration. G.K. Chesterton once wrote that Christians “fast for joy,” while others, “feast for misery.” It makes sense. If I didn’t know the love of God, I would be free to stuff my face with burgers every Friday without

a hint of Catholic guilt. But the feast would be joyless. On the other hand, as a Catholic who is fed by the body and blood of God himself, it’s quite easy to turn even a deprivation such as meatless Fridays into a joyous penance. In the depths of our hearts, we’re getting ready for something big to happen, and Lent is serious. But the miracle

about to happen on Easter is all about the victory of God over sin and death. It’s when we are made most aware of the depth of our sin that our joy over God’s forgiveness becomes most intense. Chesterton says that St. Francis of Assisi was famously penitential but certainly not gloomy. His humility unhorsed him and flung him into fasting and penance as if he

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was entering a battle. He loved it more than most men love gold. There are a few things I want to change this Lent. Specifically, I want to avoid rookie mistakes like showing up too late and finding out that all the mac ’n’ cheese is gone. May your penance be serious this Lent, and may it be joyful.


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

FEATURE

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Quest to find son’s killer shines light on prescription drug crisis By Peter Finney Jr. Catholic News Service

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EW ORLEANS (CNS) — For more than 20 years, Dan Schneider bargained with God. The negotiations began in 1999, when Schneider’s son Danny was killed at midnight on the streets of New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward, triggering the devastated pharmacist to ignore the advice and even incite the anger of the New Orleans Police Department by launching his own gum-shoe investigation that ultimately resulted in identifying and convicting his son’s killer. Then, as if beating those enormous odds and dealing with his family’s searing h e a r t ache were not enough, Schneider channeled his pain into a second crusade every bit as heroic if not quixotic — shutting down the state’s largest opioid mill in New Orleans East, paying homage to the son who was stolen from him by the drug underworld. “I went at warp speed to do my best,” Schneider said, “but there were so many things along the way, both in solving Danny’s murder and in the [opioid] case, where I said to God, ‘OK, God, you did this for me and I’m going to do this for you, but why are you making it so hard? Why, after telling me to go do this, do police get in my way and goons chase me?’” Schneider’s 20-year mission to secure a resolution to his 22-yearold son’s death and to protect young people like him has been transformed into a riveting Netflix documentary series titled simply, “The Pharmacist.” The documentary already has garnered global acclaim for its exposure of the prescription drug crisis that claimed a half-million lives in the U.S. between 2000 and 2015; 60% of those deaths were attributed to opioid overdoses. Schneider’s first child, Danny, was born in 1976. Schneider said he and his wife were Catholic by birth and heritage, but he admits they probably would have considered themselves “occasional” Catholics in those days. “That was until my son’s death — and I hate to say that,” Schneider said. “For a very brief moment — maybe a week or less — I was angry at God, but I came around real quick. At first, it was not just love of God — it was desperation. Then it became love, and then it became an agreement. I actually started sensing that God was helping me.” There were many heroes along the

CNS PHOTO/FRANK J. METHE, CLARION HERALD

Dan Schneider, a member of Most Holy Trinity Parish in Covington, La., pictured Feb. 14, was a pharmacist in the civil jurisdiction of St. Bernard Parish in Louisiana in 1999 when his son Danny was killed in New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward. His first crusade to find his son’s killer and, then, a second crusade to close down a “pill mill” in New Orleans East, took fortitude and perseverance and reliance on his Catholic faith. way — the woman, Shane Madding, who endangered her own life by identifying and then agreeing to testify against the killer despite persistent death threats; the pastor, Terence Reed of Lighthouse Ministries in the Ninth Ward, who agreed to walk the streets, along with a cadre of African American men recovering from drug and alcohol addictions, introducing the white pharmacist from Chalmette, Louisiana, to residents while he posted flyers on telephone poles and knocked on doors. “There’s a bunch of what I call mini-miracles,” Schneider said. “If you’re not a believer, some people would explain them away as coincidence. All my friends were on my case. My wife was on my case. The police were fighting me almost [to stop]. I was very close to quitting.”

Just as he was prepared to give up his investigation, Schneider used an address-based telephone directory to call every house within a half-mile radius of Danny’s shooting. Almost everyone said they knew nothing or hung up. He finally got Shane Madding to tell him what happened, and her testimony led to Jeffrey Hall pleading guilty to manslaughter. Schneider thought it was the end of an exhausting family saga, but as he continued to work at Bradley’s Pharmacy in Poydras, he noticed a disturbing flow of young people — about the age of his late son — bringing in prescriptions for OxyContin, Xanax and the muscle-relaxant Soma. That three-drug package was known on the streets as the “Holy Trinity.” About 90% of the prescriptions

were written by Dr. Jacqueline Cleggett, a doctor of internal medicine and pediatrics who had opened a “pain management” clinic in New Orleans East, just a few miles from the St. Bernard Parish line. The young kids triggered an alarm in Schneider. “This wasn’t a middle-aged guy walking in who was working on an oyster boat who had hurt himself and had some legitimate pain,” Schneider said. “My son had died at 22, and these were 20-year-olds walking in, looking perfectly healthy.” Because of what happened to his son, Schneider felt compelled not to look the other way. On a car trip to watch the New Orleans Saints play a road playoff game in January 2001, Schneider was wrestling with embarking on another major investigation when he looked through his windshield and saw a clearly defined cloud formation in the shape of a cross. That convinced him to move forward. The Schneiders got back to the New Orleans area around midnight, and the pharmacist remembered that many people coming into his store to have their prescriptions filled told him Cleggett worked late hours — well past midnight — at her clinic. “So, now it’s about 2 o’clock in the morning and we pull up to the clinic and park across the street to videotape,” Schneider said. “My wife sees this and she goes, ‘Oh, my God. It’s 2 o’clock in the morning, and there’s a hundred people there!’ “There were actually cabs pulling up, parking and then the people would run inside and then come back into the cab and leave. When I went out there, I didn’t think it was going to be as bad as my patients had been telling me. It was way worse.” Schneider’s evidence against Cleggett eventually led to her pleading guilty to one of 37 counts of conspiring to dispense and distribute a controlled substance. Now that his crusade to protect others has raised awareness of the dangers of opioids and other controlled substances being used and sold on the black market, Schneider hopes his efforts will save other lives. His story has been a major impetus for an umbrella federal lawsuit, centered in Cleveland, in which dozens of states and municipalities are seeking compensation from various pharmaceutical companies for failing to properly warn consumers about the addictive properties of OxyContin and other prescription medications. “The whole reason I did this, in addition to my commitment to God, is to save lives,” Schneider said. “One life is worth it, but I’m not trying to save just one life. I want to save hundreds of lives, and I’ll lay it on the line for as long as I can. God is all over this thing.”


LET THE MADNESS BEGIN T

Photos by Jay Soldner

he archdiocesan Catholic Youth Organization finished up its own version of March Madness on March 6 and 7 as the CYO boys and girls teams hosted their championship games. In all, 29 champions were crowned for grades 5-8. The Leaven attended the fifth-grade girls championship game March 6 at Nativity School in Leawood to catch the action between St. Patrick’s and St. Ann’s girls CYO teams.

GAME PLAN

St. Patrick’s coach Courtney Sachen explains a play to Katy Mera during a break in the action. St. Patrick was the top seed in the fifth-grade girls AA championship bracket.

TIPOFF

St. Ann’s Coco Reiser wins the opening tipoff to start the Catholic Youth Organization’s fifth-grade girls AA championship game.

REBOUND

St. Ann’s Mary Freeman (#14) and Oliva Buck (#15) prepare to battle St. Patrick’s Katy Mera (#43) for a rebound off a missed free throw.

LOOSE BALL

St. Patrick’s Haley Joly (#15) and St. Ann’s Olivia Buck go all out for a loose ball during their championship clash on March 6.


ALL SMILES

St. Ann’s Andie Bradley (#10) and Ava Slocum (#13) can’t contain their happiness as they hustle back on defense after a successful play results in two points for St. Ann’s.

DEFENSE

St. Patrick’s Addie Sachen (#31) looks for a path to the basket as a tough St. Ann defense led by Lillie Stecklein (#20) and Charlotte Reintjes close in.

FAST BREAK

St. Patrick’s Gaby Calderan (#25) tries to get past St. Ann’s Georgia Gittemeier as the two teams battle down the stretch of the championship game.

SHOOTER

St. Ann’s Ayanna Gupta (#25) gets past the St. Patrick defense and looks to put up a shot.

CHAMPIONS

St. Ann’s Coco Reiser hoists the championship trophy after St. Ann’s won a close 20-19 game at Nativity School on March 6.


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

NATION

Diocese, Catholic community begin long recovery from devastating tornadoes By Theresa Laurence Catholic News Service

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ASHVILLE, Tenn. (CNS) — The Diocese of Nashville and the Catholic community are responding to the needs, both immediate and long-term, of those affected by deadly tornadoes that ripped across Middle Tennessee in the early hours of March 3, leaving at least 24 people dead. Bishop J. Mark Spalding has visited the affected pastors and churches in Nashville and offered prayers of support for all those suffering from the trauma of the disaster. He has received messages of support from Archbishop Jose H. Gomez of Los Angeles, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States. “As the personal representative of the Holy Father in this country, I assure you of his prayers in this difficult situation,” the letter said. Diocesan parishes and schools sprang into action after the storm. Holy Rosary Church in Donelson served as the site of a Red Cross emergency shelter, March 3, and a number of churches and schools were collecting supplies such as bottled water and baby formula for tornado victims. The Knights of Columbus has been marshaling its members to donate money, materials and manpower to relief efforts. “In the coming days,

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W CNS PHOTO/MARK ZALESKI, FOR THE TENNESSEAN

Security officers walk behind the tornado-damaged Department of Human Services building in Nashville, Tenn., March 5. Dozens of people are dead after a powerful and fast-moving storm cut across Middle Tennessee in the early hours of March 3, dropping tornadoes that roared up to 165 miles per hour. we will offer the strength of unity of nearly 12,000 Knights across the state as we go to work to bring relief to this disaster,” State Deputy Michael McCusker wrote in a letter to local Knights. He called charity “the first and foremost principle” of the fraternal order and said the Tennessee State Council is working in conjunction with the Nashville Diocese “to coordinate a statewide KofC charitable effort.” The Catholic Pastoral Center in Nashville planned to host a Red Cross blood drive March 9.

care for those who are ill, emphasizing that this type of virtual health care not only improves access to care but also prevents spread of the virus since patients are seen at home. The website offers health tips to guard against the virus such as: avoiding unnecessary travel and congregating in group settings, as well as keeping a “social distance” of 6 feet away from people while in public. It also emphasizes the need to be diligent about hand hygiene and about coughing or sneezing in one’s elbow. “Telehealth is ideal for the initial screening of patients with respiratory conditions that are common in COVID19,” said Dr. Kathleen Berchelmann, chief medical officer at MyCatholicDoctor. “Our board-certified telehealth providers are trained to screen patients, assign risk, answer questions, prescribe

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Catholics organize to defeat assisted suicide bill By Laura Ieraci Catholic News Service

The Catholic Schools Office is exploring how it might help Donelson Christian Academy, which was destroyed by the tornado and will be looking to relocate students to finish the school year. Catholic Charities of Tennessee also is on the front lines of responding to the needs of tornado victims. “We have a balance between the work that doesn’t stop and the emergency work,” Judy Orr, the agency’s executive director, told the Tennessee Register, Nashville’s diocesan newspaper.

Medical professionals offer online coronavirus care

ASHINGTON (CNS) — In response to the coronavirus, a Catholic virtual health website, MyCatholicDoctor, has dedicated part of its site just to the virus and the disease it causes, COVID-19. The site, essentially a virtual medical practice which launched last year with more than 40 medical professionals, has an on-call infection control officer available as well as a COVID-19 readiness team. “Preventing the spread of illness is fundamental to promoting a culture of life,” the group said in an announcement about its current emphasis on the coronavirus, available at https:// mycatholicdoctor.com/coronavirus. The website offers video visits and

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medications, and recommend the next steps a patient should take. For most patients, we can help the patient heal at home,” she said. As for what to expect of a MyCatholicDoctor appointment, health care providers meet with patients through video conferencing, via smartphone, tablet or computer. Medical records can be reviewed online and imaging, blood tests and prescriptions can be ordered remotely. If in-person visits or surgical care are deemed necessary, patients are referred to a local physician that practices with Catholic principles in mind. MyCatholicDoctor is accepted by most insurance companies as an outof-network provider, and it is becoming in-network for most major insurance providers.

HITING, Ind. (CNS) — Catholics in Northwest Indiana are organizing to raise awareness about the ongoing efforts in the state Legislature to legalize assisted suicide. “The assisted suicide and euthanasia lobby is patient,” Alex Schadenberg, executive director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, who addressed a regional event organized by St. Mary Byzantine Catholic Parish in Whiting. The foremost expert on the euthanasia and assisted suicide debate in North America, Schadenberg spoke about how the movement to legalize assisted suicide in the United States has developed in the past 30 years. Currently, assisted suicide is legal in eight states and the District of Columbia. He described how the lobby manipulates language and uses words like “compassion” and “care” to convince people that assisted suicide and euthanasia are morally acceptable. The lobby also works to recruit volunteers and sympathizers in state legislatures, whose strategy includes presenting bills on a steady and annual basis, as is currently happening in Indiana. In 2020 to date, assisted suicide bills have been presented in at least 18 states, said Schadenberg, the main presenter at the Feb. 29 event in Whiting. State Rep. Matt Pierce, a Democrat from Bloomington, has been leading the charge in these ongoing efforts in Indiana. He has presented a bill aimed at legalizing assisted suicide each year since 2017. On Jan. 7, he presented his fourth bill on this issue, Indiana End of Life Options Act, called H.B. 1020. Schadenberg said bills are initially drafted to include limited access and “safeguards” against abuse of the law in order to get them passed. However, after a few years, “incremental extensions” are consistently added to the law as amendments, leaving “loopholes so big you can drive a hearse through,” he said. He gave the examples of the Netherlands and Belgium, where access to assisted suicide and euthanasia has been extended to minors and people with mental illness, disabilities and nonterminal diseases.


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

VATICAN

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‘SECRET’ NO MORE

Vatican wartime archives ready for new batch of scholars By Carol Glatz Catholic News Service

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ATICAN CITY (CNS) — After decades of anticipation, the Vatican archives are ready to welcome, starting March 2, scores of scholars wishing to study documents related to the wartime pontificate of Pope Pius XII. All 85 researchers who have requested access have been given the green light to come and sift through all the materials from the period of 1939 to 1958, Bishop Sergio Pagano, prefect of the Vatican Apostolic Archives, told Catholic News Service Jan. 13. Coming from at least a dozen countries, the first wave of researchers includes 10 experts from the United States, including two from the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. The museum has been working with the Vatican archives for more than a decade, Bishop Pagano said, ever since Pope Benedict XVI authorized the early opening of materials pertaining to the pre-World War II pontificate of Pope Pius XI. So far, Bishop Pagano said, seven experts will be coming from Israel, 14 from Germany, 16 from Italy, 20 from Eastern Europe, including Russia, and the rest from France, Spain and Latin America to study the Pius XII-era archives. “But we expect an increase in requests after March 2,” he added. While the reading rooms and archive personnel can accommodate and assist a maximum of 60 people a day, the newcomers’ access will be staggered out over the year, he said, allowing the many academics currently pursuing other topics to continue their work. The archive’s records and artifacts date back more than 1,000 years and fill more than 50 miles of shelving. It took more than 12 years to sort through, organize and catalogue the enormous quantity of information from Pope Pius XII’s long pontificate, Bishop Pagano said; documents from the time period also were collected from the archives of the Vatican Secretariat of State, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and Vatican nunciatures around the world. The open collection also includes thousands of notes regarding Pope Pius’ charitable activity in Italy and abroad. In fact, Bishop Pagano said he hoped there would be in-depth research into the critical and huge amount of aid the pope gave to those desperately in need during and after the war. Such massive assistance, he said, was due in large part to a constant flow of generous donations from the United States. Just the index — listing the documents with detailing of who made the donations, the amounts sent and where the money went — takes up two volumes. “There was not only a Marshall Plan,” the U.S. program for the economic recovery of Europe after World War II, he said, “but you could say there was also a U.S.-Vatican plan by American Catholics to help the pope in his enormous works of charity.” The nationality or religion of those requesting aid did not matter to the pope, only verifying that need was

CNS PHOTO/PAUL HARING

Above, letters from needy German children thanking Pope Pius XII in 1948 for gifts he sent for their first Communions are displayed among materials from his pontificate in the Vatican Apostolic Archives at the Vatican Feb. 27. Journalists previewed the archives in advance of the March 2 opening of materials on the World War II pontificate of Pope Pius XII. Right, books are pictured in the Vatican Apostolic Archives in this undated photo. After decades of anticipation, the Vatican is opening its archives on the World War II pontificate of Pope Pius XII.

legitimate, the bishop said. He said the archives have letters from people who admitted they were atheists but were turning to the pope for help because they saw him as the only moral leader left in such a dark time in history. Referring to accusations by some historians and Jewish groups that Pope Pius XII and others did not do enough to stop the Nazi rise to power and the Holocaust, Bishop Pagano said the pope “did speak with his efforts and then he spoke up with words, so it is not true that the pope was totally silent.” The new researchers’ stated fields of interest, he said, obviously were focused on World War II, the Holocaust, the persecution of the Jewish people, the murder of Italian citizens in Rome by Nazi German troops and the relationship between the Holy See and the Nazi’s national socialist party and with communism. But some are also looking into Pope Pius’ valuable theological legacy and writings. He wrote more than 40 encyclicals, and “he is one of the popes most cited during the Second Vatican Council,” the bishop said. Some experts also will be looking for information about local dioceses and how the pope may have helped those sheltering refugees and Jews in

CNS PHOTO/COURTESY VATICAN APOSTOLIC ARCHIVES

religious institutes, for example, he said. However, based on what he has seen, he said he does not think researchers will find anything “enormously new” or anything that will turn history “upside down.” For years, historians have pored over information already available from national, local and private archives, he said. The material now available in the Vatican archives should provide greater details and help historians “better analyze how certain processes were set in motion, how the pope studied certain issues, who analyzed them, which people contributed” to his way of proceeding, like the advisory role the Jesuits had both concerning world affairs and the pope’s encyclicals, Bishop Pagano said. Together with what has been emerging in national archives, he said, “many prejudices [against the pope] will fade away, without a doubt.” But, “it will take many years to form a new opinion about Pius XII. One, two years is not enough,” said the 71-yearold bishop, who has worked at the ar-

chives for more than 40 years. If studying all historical records is done objectively and critically, he said, “maybe in 10 years a new impression will take shape of this pontificate, which was very remarkable and came at a very critical point in world history.” While everyone given access to the archives is a qualified and experienced researcher, “not everyone has a well-developed scientific approach,” the bishop added. Some come looking for something that does not exist, and some are just curious. But those who are serious scholars know that it takes a very long time to look at many historical records and to cross-reference all of them. “It’s not enough to have found one file that talks about one thing and then write a book because that file is related to 10 others in many other collections,” he said. “Therefore, my advice I would give scholars who come to the Vatican archive is to stay for a long time, the longest time possible,” in order to take advantage of its unique holdings.


MARCH 6, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

CLASSIFIEDS

EMPLOYMENT Looking for a job? - The Mission Project - Personal Care Assistants LLC is seeking qualified caregivers to support participants in accomplishing necessary activities of daily living, such as meal planning and preparation, grocery shopping, apartment care, laundry and organizational tasks as indicated on individual skill plans. Wages start at $15/hour for qualified candidates. Requirements: high school diploma and valid Kansas or Missouri driver’s license and reliable transportation. Preferred: experience working with adults with autism, Down syndrome and other developmental disabilities; experience providing life skills in community-based settings; education or training related to individuals with special needs. To apply, contact Robin Silverman at: robinsilverm@gmail. com. Bus drivers - With multiple locations in Johnson County, Special Beginnings Early Learning Center provides high quality early childhood education in a safe, loving, Christian environment. With a balanced curriculum of preacademics and social-emotional development, children grow with us, build confidence, and a strong self-esteem. At Special Beginnings, we believe providing the right environment will give children the foundation to be successful in life. Special Beginnings Early Learning Center is seeking a part-time bus driver (15-20 hrs/week; no weekend hours) of a 15-passenger bus to drive children to school and/or pick them up after school. Duties include: safely transport children to and/or from school following ALL safety & security procedures; safely transport children to and from field trips and other off-site activities; follow a planned route on a time schedule; help children get on and off the bus; ensure children stay in their seat at all times; follow traffic laws and state and federal transit regulations; carefully navigate roads and watch for ice, debris or slippery spots; report accidents immediately; maintain “clean” driving record during off hours. We require the following: driver must be at least 25 years old (due to insurance requirements) with a “clean” driving record for at least 2 years; pass a background check; must maintain and practice safe driving and have a “clean” driving record; have patience and understanding when working with children ages 5-12 years old; enjoy working in a child friendly environment. Benefits: competitive benefit package; excellent support and training from an experienced leadership/management team; pay: $11-15/hour depending on experience. Career opportunity – Due to the success and growth of the Knights of Columbus, we are adding a financial representative in the Kansas City, Kansas, and Missouri metro areas, St. Joseph, Mo., and Maryville, Mo. This is ideal for a determined, high energy, high expectation, professional, self-disciplined, independent individual, who desires 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. For more information or an interview, please contact John A. Mahon, General Agent, 1275 S.W. Topeka Blvd., Topeka, KS 66612; call (855) 356-4849; or email: mahonagencymail2@kofc.org. We need your help! - Caring and reliable drivers needed to transport K - 12 students to and from school in Johnson and Wyandotte counties in company minivans. We offer competitive wages, flexible schedules and the ability to make a difference in your community by helping those in need. CDL not required. Retirees encouraged to apply. Call (913) 262-5190 or visit: AssistedTransportation.com to learn more and apply online. EEO. Administrative assistant - Looking for something new? Use your administrative skills to help a developmental optometrist change people’s lives. The hours are: T/W/TH from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.; summer hours vary. No health benefits. Need to know basic bookkeeping skills. Background needed in Work, Excel and QuickBooks. Customer service and medical office experience helpful. Send resume to: Dr. Beth Bazin, 13600 Washington, Kansas City, MO 64145 or send via email to: bbazin@visiondevelop.com. Community live-in assistants - L’Arche Heartland of Overland Park serves adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities in day program support services and in residential services. We are seeking assistants who are looking for a unique opportunity in a faithbased organization. We are in immediate need of live-in assistants and potential live-out assistants to work in our day program serving 30 adults. We have a recycling program and community activities. Our core members participate in distributing for Meals on Wheels and Rise Against Hunger. They also attend community events such as the library, movies, bowling and going to parks. We also have a need for live-in and live-out assistants in our five residential homes. If interested, contact Jamie Henderson, community leader, by email at: jamie@ larcheks.org. Male services coordinator - Advice and Aid is seeking a part-time, 30 hours/week, male services coordinator. He will oversee male client services, meet with male clients, oversee male aspects of education programs and oversee volunteer male mentors. The ideal candidate has organizing and prioritizing skills; health, counseling experience; social services, nonprofit or ministry experience; is an excellent communicator; available for some Tuesday/Thursday evenings; bilingual a plus. We are looking for a committed, pro-life Christian who can affirm our vision, mission and statement of faith. Send cover letter and resume to: deniser@adviceandaid.com by March 16. No phone calls.

Teaching positions - St. John School in Lawrence is seeking teachers in first and third grades. Applicants should be innovative teachers that want to help our students grow in their faith, knowledge and service. We are looking for teachers that have an inclusive mindset and want to challenge all students. If interested, visit the archdiocesan website at: www.archkckcs.org to apply. Once your online application has been submitted, send your resume and cover letter to Chris Reffett at: reffett@ saint-johns.net. Social worker - Advice and Aid is seeking a part-time social worker, 25 hours/week. Will determine client needs and match to social services. Evaluate services and programs to maintain resource list. The ideal candidate has master’s degree in social work, LMSW or LSCSW and two to five years’ experience. Organizing and prioritizing skills and objectivity; nonprofit or ministry experience; excellent communicator; bilingual a plus. Looking for a committed, pro-life Christian who can affirm our vision, mission and statement of faith. Send cover letter and resume to: deniser@adviceandaid.com by March 16. No phone calls. Director of formation in sacred music - Christ the King Church and School in Kansas City, Kansas, invites music educators to apply for the position of director of formation in sacred music. Educators who seek to shape students in both wisdom and virtue, and who share the belief that music and aesthetics play an integral part in the content of a Catholic education, should apply. Salary is commensurate with the qualifications of the applicant. The director is an integral member of the school faculty with professional knowledge of music in the celebration of the sacred liturgy of the modern Roman rite. This ministry aims to create fluency in the language of beauty for the children of Christ the King School by instructing them in the fundamentals of reading music and singing technique with a goal toward training them for sung prayer. As a secondary role, the director provides formation in the planning, execution and celebration of Sunday and feast day parish liturgies. Contact Father Nick Blaha at: nblaha@archkck.org for application details. CDL shuttle drivers and chauffeurs - Part-time and full-time positions available: days, evenings and weekends. Flexible schedules and full-time benefits. Great part-time job for retirees/students. Must be at least 25 years old with a clean driving record. Call Mike Goulding, Kansas City Transportation Group, (816) 512-2504. Chief operating officer - The St. Lawrence Center at KU seeks a chief operating officer (COO) to align the internal working and external relations of the center to its mission. The COO manages key staff and oversees the fundraising plan and budget. The ideal candidate has experience with fundraising, staff development, human resources and business operations. The COO must be personally inspiring and able to sell the church’s mission to all constituents, especially benefactors. Find a full job description and inquiries online at: kucatholic.org. Special education teacher – Holy Spirit School in Overland Park is seeking a special education teacher for the 2020-21 school year. Experience with students with Down syndrome and/or American Sign Language would be a plus. If you are a KS-licensed educator with a love for all God’s children, contact Michele Watson at: mwatson@ hscatholic.org for more information. Director of administrative services - Good Shepherd Parish in Shawnee has a June 1 full-time opening for the director of administrative services. Qualified applicants will have successful management experience with an emphasis in human resources, financial and facilities management. In addition, a demonstrated commitment to the Catholic faith and mission is essential. This position is responsible for managing the parish front office; managing all human resources responsibilities including the processing of payroll; managing all parish facilities/ grounds needs; coordinating the parish/school finances with the parish accountant; and supervising a staff of three. Strong communications skills are essential, along with a desire to work in a positive faith-oriented environment. Competency with Microsoft Office programs, internet use and email required. This full-time position is eligible for parish and archdiocese benefits. Please submit cover letter and resume to: slemons@gsshawnee. org or to: frkent@gsshawnee.org by March 24. Teaching positions - Nativity Day School in Leawood is hiring full- and part-time preschool teachers for the 2020-21 school year. Must have experience working in primary education or preschool setting. Competitive pay, holidays, breaks and summers off. Please send resumes to Jami Huderski at: jami.huderski@kcnativity. org. Welcoming new preschoolers - Prince of Peace Early Education Center, where children, faith and learning come first, has openings in full-time preschool for ages 2, 3 and 4, as well as part-time preschool for ages 3, 4 and 5. Come by for a tour today!. Contact Kate Potter, director, at: kpotter@popolathe.org or call (913) 8292728. Groundskeeping position - Catholic Cemeteries is seeking an individual for a full-time groundskeeping position, hours Monday through Saturday. Salary $30K. This position requires heavy lifting. Must be physically fit, experienced in operating construction equipment; being mechanically inclined would be a plus. Must be a fast learner and flexible on hours. Interested individuals should contact Chris Myers at (913) 461-2424 or send a resume to: cmyers@cathcemks.org.

Part-time accountant - The St. Lawrence Catholic Center at KU seeks a part-time accountant. The accountant inspires trust among staff, the board of directors and benefactors by accurately recording and communicating the financial transactions and position of the center. Find a full job description and inquiries online at: kucatholic.org.

HOME IMPROVEMENT 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) 579-1835. Email: smokeycabin@hotmail.com. Member of Holy Trinity, Lenexa. 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 be glad you did. Everything is guaranteed 100% (913) 461-4052 www.windowservicesoverlandpark.com drcconswindows@gmail.com 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. Local handyman - Painting int. and ext., wood rot, power washing, staining, masonry (chimney repair, patio’s) gutter cleaning, water heaters, junk removal, lawn mowing, window cleaning, honey - do list and more!! Member of Holy Angels Parish, Basehor. Call Billy at (913)927-4118. 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. NELSON CREATIONS Affordable home remodeling: Kitchens, baths, basements and room additions. All interior and exterior work. Honest, dependable, experienced and family owned. Licensed and insured. Member St. Joseph Parish, Shawnee. (913) 927-5240 or nelsport@everestkc.net Popcorn texture removed and apply knockdown texture. Renew your walls with a fresh coat of quality paint! Sheetrock and plaster repair Fully insured, serving Kansas for 27 years Call or text Jerry at (913) 206-1144. Concrete construction - Tear out and replace amped, 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. 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) 935-0176

CAREGIVING Looking for assisted living at home? - Before you move, call us and explore our in-home care options. We specialize in helping families live safely at home while saving thousands of dollars per year. Call today for more information or to request a FREE home care planning guide. Benefits of Home - Senior Care, www.benefits ofhome.com or call (913) 422-1591. Caring companion - Certified nursing assistant with 10+ years of experience with stroke, Alzheimer and dementia patients. Can assist with personal care services as well as nonemergency medical transportation. Call (816) 986-7767 or (816) 786-1093. 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.

SERVICES Tree trimming/landscaping Free estimates licensed/insured/references (913) 620-6063 Clutter getting you down? - Organize, fix, assemble, install! “Kevin of all trades” your professional organizer and “Honey-do” specialist. Call or email me today for a free consultation at (913) 271-5055 or KOATorganizing@gmail.com. Insured. References.

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Handyman - Furloughed railroader trying to keep the bills paid for my family. I advertised here as Father and Son Home Exteriors and Remodeling for 13 years previously. I can do carpentry, windows, doors, trim, siding and decks. Also paint, sheetrock and tiling. No project too big or too small. Give me a call and ask for Josh at (913) 709-7230. Doll dresses - First Communion dresses for American Girl dolls or any 18” dolls. To include dress, veil, shoes, tights, and cross necklace for $35. Call (913) 345-9498 or send an email to: wwelch4@kc.rr.com to order. The dress is on display at Trinity House, 6731 W. 119th St., Overland Park, KS. 8 to Your Ideal Weight Get Real, Get Healthy, Get Empowered. Release your weight and restore your power in 8 weeks! http://8toyouridealweight.com/coach/kathi/ Cleaning lady - Reasonable rates; references provided. Call (913) 940-2959. 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. Memory quilts - Preserve your memories in a keepsake quality quilt, pillows, etc. Custom designed from your T-shirt collection, baby clothes, sports memorabilia, neckties . . . Quilted Memories. (913) 649-2704. 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@mikehammermoving.com. Custom countertops - Laminates installed within five days. Cambria, granite and solid surface. Competitive prices, dependable work. Call the Top Shop, Inc., at (913) 962-5058. Members of St. Joseph, Shawnee. Rodman Lawn Care Lawn mowing, aeration, verticutting, mulching, Hedge trimming, leaf removal, gutter cleaning Fully insured and free estimates John Rodman (913) 548-3002

REAL ESTATE We buy houses and whole estates - We are local and family owned, and will make you a fair cash offer. We buy houses in any condition. No fees or commissions and can close on the date of your choice. Selling your house as is never felt so good. Jon & Stacy Bichelmeyer (913) 599-5000. WE SELL HOMES - Looking to sell? This is a seller’s market. Call for a free consultation detailing the steps to selling your home. Ask about our 39-day sales guarantee. Mention this ad for a special offer. Call Jim Blaufuss, Re/Max Realty Suburban, at (913) 226-7442. Jimblaufuss@remax.net. Whole Estates Need to sell a home and everything in it? We buy it all at once in as-is condition. Call (816) 444-1950 or send an email to: www.wholeestates.com.

FOR SALE Residential lifts - New and recycled. Stair lifts, porch lifts, ceiling lifts and elevators. St. Michael’s parishioners. KC Lift & Elevator at (913) 327-5557. (Formerly Silver Cross - KC) For sale - Two side-by-side plots at Mount Moriah South Cemetery. Lot 92, block 2G, spaces 2 and 4. Value: $7200; asking $4000. Call JoAnn at (913) 262-9582.

WANTED TO BUY Wanted to buy - Antique/vintage jewelry, paintings, pottery, sterling, etc. Single pieces or estate. Renee Maderak, (913) 475-7393. St. Joseph Parish, Shawnee. 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. Wanted to buy - Old cars or hot rods. Uncompleted project cars in any condition, with or without titles. Cash buyer. Call (913) 980-3559.

CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING Cost is $20 for the first five lines, $1.50 per line thereafter. To purchase a Leaven classified ad, email The Leaven at: beth.blankenship@theleaven.org.


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

CALENDAR ‘LINGER OVER COFFEE’ DURING LENT Marillac Center 4200 S. 4th St., Leavenworth March 24 and 31 from 9:30 - 11 a.m.

During sessions on “Praying All Ways,” presenters will discuss ways to achieve a deeper and more reflective awareness of God’s presence. This can occur through praying with music, images, poetry, nature, the imagination, walking and more. All are welcome for one or more sessions and for Mass in Ross Chapel following the discussion. There is no fee, but a freewill offering can be made. There is no need to preregister. For more information, call (913) 758-6552 or send an email to: retreats@scls.org.

TACO DINNER AND SALAMI BINGO Holy Family Parish (Mejak Hall) 513 Ohio, Kansas City, Kansas March 14 at 5:30 p.m.

The Altar Society of Holy Family Parish will host its annual taco supper and salami bingo. Dinner will be served from 6:15 - 7:15 p.m. A $15 donation includes one bingo card, one taco dinner and all the cold beverages you can drink until the games end. For tickets, call Sandy Cannon at (913) 396-1564 or Cathy Schneider at (913) 371-1561. No one under the age of 21 will be admitted.

ST. PATRICK’S DAY DINNER St. Patrick Parish 33721 N.W. Crawford Rd., Williamsburg March 15 from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

There will be a dinner of corned beef and cabbage, homemade pies and more. The suggested donation is $10 per person. Traditional Irish music will be provided by Beyond the Heather. There will also be great raffle prizes.

FEAST DAY DINNER St. Patrick Parish VFW Hall 324 S. East St., Scranton March 15 from 11 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

The cost for a dinner of ham or turkey and all the trimmings, plus pie and a beverage, is: $10 for adults; $5 for kids ages 5 - 12; and free for kids 5 and under. Raffle items are available. Questions? Call Lori at (785) 640-7262.

Join other women of faith for lunch and companionship. No RSVP is needed. We can help each other ease the pain and get through this time in life. For more information, send an email to: WidowedWomenofFaith@gmail. com.

ALAN AMES - CATHOLIC EVANGELIST WITH GIFT OF HEALING Guardian Angels Parish 1310 Westport, Kansas City, Missouri March 16 at 6:30 p.m. St. John LaLande Parish 805 N.W. R.D. Mize Rd., Blue Springs, Missouri March 17 at 7 p.m.

Each evening will begin with Mass followed by Alan Ames speaking. Then, each person will have the opportunity to receive prayer ministry. Ames has traveled extensively over the last 24 years giving witness to his conversion from a man of sin to one who is very close to God and the Catholic Church. Testimonies are listed on his website at: www.alanames.org.

ST. JOSEPH TABLE Holy Angels Parish 15438 Leavenworth Rd., Basehor March 19 at 6:15 p.m.

Holy Angels will host a delicious Italian dinner. There will also be a silent auction and a bake sale.

ST. JOSEPH TABLE Guardian Angels Parish 1310 Westport Rd., Kansas City, Missouri March 19 from 11:30 a.m. - 7 p.m.

The Guardian Angels congregation invites everyone to view its St. Joseph Table and have a pasta dinner. The cost is a freewill offering.

RUMMAGE SALE Sacred Heart Parish 408 Cedar, Ottawa March 19 from 8:30 am. - 6 p.m. March 20 from 8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. (half price) March 21 from 7:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. (two bags for $2)

MEMORIAL PANCAKE BREAKFAST Christ the King Parish 3024 N. 53rd St., Kansas City, Kansas March 15 from 8 - 11 a.m.

There will be clothing, appliances, household goods, outdoor items, electronics and much more. Proceeds benefit programs within the church, school and community.

CORNED BEEF DINNER Immaculate Conception Parish-St. Joseph Parish (Miege Hall) 711 N. 5th St., Leavenworth March 15 from 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

The “Exultet” is one of the most evocative and poetic hymns of praise in the liturgy, giving thanks and praise for God’s saving activity through both night and light. We will read this Easter proclamation together prayerfully. Register online at: www.conceptionabbey. org; click on “Guests,” then “Upcoming Retreats” or call (660) 944-2809.

Knights of Columbus Council 3768 will host a memorial pancake breakfast in honor of Bob Nill and all his years of service as a crossing guard for the school children. Proceeds go to benefit the Nill family.

Come meet with family and friends for fun and food. There will be a corned beef and cabbage dinner in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. The cost for a ticket is: $10 for adults; $5 for kids 4 - 11; and free for kids 4 and under for a hot dog meal. There will also be a Pot O’ Gold cash raffle, a silent raffle and games for kids.

‘THERE IS HOPE FOR YOU AND YOUR LOVED ONES AFTER DEATH BY SUICIDE’ St. Joseph Parish (center) 5901 Flint, Shawnee March 17 at 7 p.m.

This group will meet for spiritual support and discussion. Please RSVP to: tracunas@arch kck.org or call (913) 647-3054. It is not necessary to give your name.

WIDOWED WOMEN OF FAITH Perkins Restaurant and Bakery (back room) 1720 S.W. Wanamaker Rd., Topeka March 17 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

LENTEN RETREAT WEEKEND: THE EASTER VIGIL’S ‘EXULTET’ Conception Abbey (Guest Center) 37174 State Hwy. VV, Conception, Missouri March 20 -22

‘HAUNTED BY GOD: THE LIFE OF DOROTHY DAY’ Precious Blood Renewal Center 2120 Gaspar Way, Liberty, Missouri March 21 from 5:30 - 8 p.m.

The founder and artistic director of Still Point Theatre Collective, Lisa Wagner -Carollo, will bring this one-woman play here for an evening performance. Father Joe Nassal will open the evening with a talk, “Radical Hospitality.” Supper will proceed the show. To learn more or to RSVP, go online to: www.pbrenewalcenter.org/events-news or call (816) 415-3745.

LENTEN WOMEN’S RETREAT ‘SEEDS OF HOPE’ Mother Teresa of Calcutta Parish 2014 N.W. 46th St., Topeka March 20 from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

March 21 from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

The retreat was designed by facilitators from the Marianist Family Retreat Center. Participants will meet important women of the Bible. For more information and registration forms, contact Marceta Reilly at: marcetar @gmail.com or (785) 608-8899; or Mary Becker at: ljbecker0@gmail.com or call (785) 246-1182. The suggested donation is $30. The retreat may be attended either day.

KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS IRISH SUPPER Divine Mercy Parish (Christian Formation Center) 555 W. Main St., Gardner March 21 from 5:30 - 7 p.m.

Join us for a St. Patrick’s Day dinner after the Saturday 4:30 p.m. Mass. There will be corned beef, cabbage, carrots, potatoes, rolls and desserts. The cost for dinner is $10 for adults; $5 for kids 10 and under.

DAUGHTERS OF ISABELLA’S WOMEN’S DAY OF REFLECTION Holy Trinity Parish 9150 Pflumm Rd., Lenexa March 21 from 9 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

The day will begin with Mass at 8 a.m. followed by a light meal and speaker in the Quigley Center. The cost to attend is $15. Sister Maureen Hall of the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth will be the speaker. The theme of the day will be: “Tipping the scales in the favor of love . . . as we walk the Lenten journey.”

DAUGHTERS OF ISABELLA St. Matthew Parish 1000 S.E. 28th St., Topeka March 22 at 7:30 a.m.

There will be a Corporate Communion Mass followed by an open meeting. If anyone knows of a member or family members of Daughters of Isabella in need of prayers, call Bobbie Graff-Hendrixson at (785) 271-0145. If you are interested in or would like more information about the Daughters of Isabella, call Cindy Keen at (785) 228-9863.

‘SPIRITUAL WARFARE: WITNESS AND REMEDY’ Holy Angels Parish 15438 Leavenworth Rd., Basehor March 22 at 3 p.m.

A former Satanist tells of his conversion and journey to the Catholic Church. The speaker will give information on powerful ways to protect your home and family using practical tools from our faith. Due to the serious nature of the conversion story, this talk is not recommended tor young children.

WELCOME WEDNESDAYS Resurrection School 425 N. 15th St., Kansas City, Kansas March 25 between 2:30 - 3:30 p.m.

If you are interested in enrolling your child in Resurrection, drop by for a tour and to learn more about the school.

DINING TO DONATE Jasper’s Restaurant 1201 W. 103rd St., Kansas City, Missouri March 25 - lunch and dinner

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ST. THÉRÈSE AND THE SHROUD OF TURIN Christ’s Peace House of Prayer 22131 Meager Rd., Easton March 27 - 29

The retreat begins on Friday at 5:30 p.m. and ends on Sunday at 4:30 p.m. Join us as we meditate on the Holy Face with St. Thérèse and enter more deeply into the passion of Christ by learning what scientists have discovered about the Shroud of Turin. There will be conferences, eucharistic adoration, Mass, confession, and time for private prayer, reflection and walking. Cabins/courtyard rooms: $170 single/$250 couple or $100 for single guest rooms. Meals are included. To attend, send an email to: info@christspeace. com or call (913) 773-8255.

CHILI/BINGO NIGHT St. Mary-St. Anthony Parish (Bishop Forst Hall) 615 N. 7th St., Kansas City, Kansas March 28 from 5 - 8 p.m.

Resurrection School in Kansas City, Kansas, invites you to its annual chili/bingo night. There will be chili, drinks, a silent auction, raffle items, bingo and a fun family evening.

‘CHRIST IN THE PASSOVER’ Queen of the Holy Rosary Parish 7023 W. 71st St., Overland Park March 31 at 7 p.m.

Do you want to learn more about the Jewish roots of our Christian faith? Come hear Bob Mendelsohn give a presentation called “Christ in the Passover,” which traces how various components of the Jewish Seder foreshadow Jesus and the Eucharist. For more information, call Tom Kolarik at (913) 238-6540.

DIVORCED: CALLED TO LOVE AGAIN Church of the Ascension (St. Luke Room) 9510 W. 127th St., Overland Park 2nd and 4th Sundays from 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Called to Love Again is a community of support and formation for divorced Catholics. Visit our Facebook page at: www.face book.com/giftofself143 or send an email to: calledtolove143@gmail.com.

PROJECT CHRYSALIS Church of the Ascension Parish (St. Luke’s Room) 9500 W. 127th St., Overland Park March 31 from 7 - 8:15 p.m.

Project Chrysalis is a ministry that offers hope to parents who have lost a child through sacred Scripture and community. While this ministry is not a bereavement group, our mission is to offer support and hope through Scripture in a time of transformation. Our guest speaker will be Father Shawn Tunink. For more information, contact Ken Billinger at (913) 634-4210 or send an email to: kbillinger@archkck.org. The group is open to parents who have lost a child to grandparents who have lost a grandchild.

SUPPORT GROUP FOR VICTIMS/ SURVIVORS OF SEXUAL ABUSE Johnson County area Twice monthly

Jasper’s is sponsoring Dining to Donate for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. They will donate 20% of all lunch and dinner sales to benefit the good works of the Sisters. Enjoy a great meal and help the Sisters. Reservations are encouraged. Contact Jasper’s at (816) 941-6600 or online at: jasperskc.com.

This will be a safe, supportive environment to talk about the impact to your lives, to know you are not alone, and to promote healing. To protect the privacy of potential participants, contact Linda Slater-Trimble for information on days, times and location of meetings by email at: lslater-trimble@archkck.org; or by phone at (913) 298-9244. Must be at least 18 years of age to participate.

PIZZA DINNER Most Pure Heart of Mary (Formation Room) 3601 S.W. 17th St., Topeka March 26 from 5 - 7 p.m.

MOTHER OF PERPETUAL HELP DEVOTIONS Queen of the Holy Rosary Parish 7023 W. 71st. St., Overland Park Tuesday evenings at 6:30 p.m.

The Christian widow and widowers organization will host a pizza dinner. There is no cost to attend. For more information, call (785) 233-7350.

Come join this group who prays this devotion weekly. Prayer includes the Mother of Perpetual Help novena and Benediction. For more information, call Martin at (913) 213-8810.


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

COMMENTARY

Here’s, fingers crossed, hoping you’ll read this column

THIRD WEEK OF LENT March 15 THIRD SUNDAY OF LENT Ex 17: 3-7 Ps 95: 1-2, 6-9 Rom 5: 1-2, 5-8 Jn 4: 5-42 March 16 Monday 2 Kgs 5: 1-15b Pss 42: 2-3; 43: 3-4 Lk 4: 24-30 March 17 Patrick, bishop Dn 3: 25, 34-43 Ps 25: 4-5ab, 6-7bc, 8-9 Mt 18: 21-35 March 18 Cyril of Jerusalem, bishop, doctor of the church Dt 4: 1, 5-9 Ps 147: 12-13, 15-16, 19-20 Mt 5: 17-19 March 19 JOSEPH, SPOUSE OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY 2 Sm 7: 4-5a, 12-14a, 16 Ps 89: 2-5, 27, 29 Rom 4: 13, 16-18, 22 Mt 1: 16, 18-21, 24a March 20 Friday Hos 14: 2-10 Ps 81: 6c-11b, 14, 17 Mk 12: 28-34 March 21 Saturday Hos 6: 1-6 Ps 51: 3-4, 18-21b Lk 18: 9-14

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here’s a sign hanging on a refrigerator in the lunchroom at the church offices. You can’t miss it, as it has a large Kansas City Chiefs logo on it. Once your attention is grabbed, you smile as you read these words: “If you made any promises during the game, services are at 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. next Sunday.” I wonder how many promises were made during the Chiefs’ two playoff games leading up to the Super Bowl. You remember those games, right? Weren’t we behind in both of those? And how many additional promises floated their way to heaven with 7:13 to go in the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl with the Chiefs down 20-10? Apparently, Catholic Chiefs fans at my parish were a loyal, believing crew, since I didn’t see an uptick in attendance at any of the Sundays during — or after —the playoff run. As humans, we tend to be a superstitious bunch. I recall seeing postings on Facebook during those Chiefs games, advising people

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MARK MY WORDS

FATHER MARK GOLDASICH Father Mark is the pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Tonganoxie. He has been editor of The Leaven since 1989.

to remember exactly where they were sitting during each game, what the snacks and beverages were, and what they were wearing . . . and to duplicate that in subsequent games. Those who didn’t watch the games were encouraged to NOT watch in the future so as to avoid imperiling the Chiefs’ “good vibes.” Even though most of us know that those things have absolutely no impact on how a team plays on a particular day, we still put them into practice “just in case.”

As a kid, I used to read the horoscopes in the newspaper. The Kansas City Star had a unique way of presenting them where you had to puzzle together your “fortune.” I don’t know how long it took me before I realized that when my horoscope said that I’d be meeting someone “attractive and mysterious” (I could hardly wait!), it also applied to my dad, an uncle, several aunts and a cousin who were also born in the month of November. What the heck? I think it was then that I tossed out my lucky rabbit’s foot, let a black cat walk across my path, intentionally broke a mirror, cavalierly stepped on a crack in the sidewalk, spilled a couple of salt shakers on the table, polka-ed under

a stepladder and flapped open an umbrella several times in a row inside the house. And, let me tell you, nothing unlucky happened. Knock on wood. So, why all of this talk about superstitions? Well, this week, we apparently hit a trifecta. Some people bemoaned that we lost an hour of sleep due to the beginning of daylight saving time. (I never saw that as terribly unlucky.) Second, there was a full moon but, unless you suffer from lycanthropy, I think you’re still pretty safe. But the third superstition pushed things over the edge. It’s “paraskevidekatreisphobia” — that is, the fear of Friday the 13th, the day this issue of The Leaven comes out. I hope you didn’t get a paper cut opening to this page. Tracing the origins of most superstitions is difficult. For Christians, the number 13 reminds folks of the Last Supper where the Twelve Apostles sat at table with Jesus, just hours before his betrayal, passion and death on Good Friday. But honestly, a number is just a number and a day of the week

just a day of the week. And if there are “unlucky” numbers and days of the week, why do they vary from culture to culture? For example, in many Spanish-speaking countries and in Greece, it’s Tuesday the 13th that’s feared; in Italy, it’s Friday the 17th! In China, 4 is considered unlucky, while a multiple of it — 8 — is considered the luckiest number. Go figure. The message in all of this is that no numbers, no particular days of the week, no stars in the sky and no psychic hotlines can predict the future. But if there were any number that is lucky, I’d propose it be the number 1. Each of us is unique. We have one life to live here on earth. We believe in one God, who has loved us into existence and will one day call us home. And we’re to live one day at a time in gratitude and confidence, making of it the best we can. By the way, if you did happen to make any promises during those Chiefs games, Masses in Tongie are at 4 p.m. on Saturday and 8 and 10:30 a.m. on Sunday!

Moses’ moment of doubt cost him the Promised Land

f someone was threatening to kill you, would you like to stand in front of that person without any protection? In a sense, that is exactly what happens in Sunday’s first reading, Ex 17:3-7. Moses complains to God: “What shall I do with this people? A little more and they will stone me!” In response, God instructs Moses: “Go over there in front of the people, along with some of the elders of Israel.” This is amazing! The people want to kill Moses, and he has to stand in front of them, without any defense. Or, is he really without any protection? Because God assures him: “I will be standing there in front of you.”

IN THE BEGINNING

FATHER MIKE STUBBS Father Stubbs is the pastor of Holy Cross Parish in Overland Park and has a degree in Scripture from Harvard University.

God promises to be there. God will protect Moses. But will God follow through with that promise? Will Moses place his trust in God?

POPE FRANCIS

In this moment, Moses’ faith in God is tested. Similarly, because the people had doubted that God would provide for them in their complaint about the lack of water, the people were testing God and God’s care for them. The people lacked faith in God. They ask: “Is the Lord in our midst or not?” That testing provides

Renewal is a continuous journey requiring humility, patience and prayer to discern God’s will, Pope Francis told members of Regnum Christi and the Legionaries of Christ. The communities’ “journey of renewal is not over because a change in mentality in individuals and in an institution requires a lot of time for assimilation and, therefore, continuous conversion,” he said in a written message. A “return to the past would be dangerous and

one of the names for the place where this event occurred. “Massah” means “testing” in Hebrew. Similarly, the other name for the place, “Meribah,” means “dispute” or “quarrel,” because the people were quarreling with Moses. In the Bible, this moment stands out in the history of the Israelite people as the classic example of failure to trust in God. It is referred to several times: “Do not harden your hearts as at Meribah, as on the day of Massah in the desert. There your ancestors tested me; they tried me though they had seen my works” (Ps 95:8-9). (See also Ps 81:8 and Ps 106:32.) When the Book of Numbers recounts this moment in the history

of the Israelite people, it describes Moses, also, as lacking faith in God. He strikes the rock twice with his staff, perhaps because he thinks that once would not be sufficient to work the miracle. Or perhaps Moses does not trust in God’s mercy toward the people, to provide them with water. In any case, as punishment for his lack of faith, Moses will not be permitted to enter the Promised Land: “Because you were not faithful to me in showing forth my sanctity before the Israelites, you shall not lead this community into the land I will give them” (Nm 20:12). The lesson is clear: Trusting in God leads to fullness of life.

meaningless,” he added. The pope’s written speech was delivered to leaders and delegates taking part in the general chapter of the Legionaries of Christ and the general assemblies of lay consecrated men and women of Regnum Christi. The pope had been scheduled to meet with them Feb. 29 at the Vatican, but the meeting was canceled. Nursing a cold, the pope has been celebrating his daily morning Mass and holding smaller meetings, but he has not attended audiences with larger groups since Feb. 27.

— CNS


MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

COMMENTARY

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Camp Tekakwitha: a million sapphires in the sun

hy do we offer summer camps and retreats for families and young people? We offer summer camps and retreats so we can deeply hear and connect with God. It is not just about horseback riding, waterslides, rock climbing, and building powerful — often lifelong — friendships. It is not just about the deeply impactful times of prayer at Mass and eucharistic adoration. It is about waking up to the reality that God is present and attentive to us each moment of our lives. It is about diving into the wonder

SEEKING CHRIST’S HEART

DEACON DANA NEARMYER Deacon Dana Nearmyer is the director of evangelization for the archdiocese.

and beauty of seeing the world through God’s perspective.

Camp is about hearing the laughter of friends, seeing shimmering yellow leaves, splashing in water like a million sapphires in the sun and knowing the gentle presence of God saying, “I am always with you.” The earlier we know that God is with us, the sooner our hearts

can experience what Scripture calls “the peace that surpasses all understanding.” This world is full of adventures and awe, but this is not heaven. Along with the wonderful experiences of life are the trying and painful experiences. And walking with God through the highs and lows of each day gives us peace, knowing that through thick and thin, we are beloved by Jesus. We are all his beloved children, but we often dismiss, reject and rush by Our Lord Jesus and his encompassing love. Camp Tekakwitha provides a gorgeous setting to slow down and experience God in first generation encounter.

Not just hearing God about God, but experiencing God moment by moment in laughter, leaves, stories, campfires, lightning bugs and engaging in prayer that opens the doors to our hearts and minds. Psalm 91 is a favorite Scripture passage of many camp staff members. We pray this as part of the Liturgy of the Hours, This segment shows us that God is close — protecting and seeking us: “You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High, who abide in the shade of the Almighty, Say to the Lord, ‘My refuge and fortress, my God in whom I trust!’ He will rescue you

from the fowler’s snare, from the destroying plague, He will shelter you with his pinions, and under his wings you may take refuge; his faithfulness is a protecting shield. You shall not fear the terror of the night nor the arrow that flies by day.” There are many reasons why Camp Tekakwitha for more than 20 years is an important chapter in the story of thousands of lives. Come write your chapter; we invite you to come on a remarkable adventure at Camp Tekakwitha. Scholarships are available. You can sign up on the website at: www.archkck. org/camp.

Pray that our schoolchildren feel the Lord’s gaze on them

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hen asked in an interview, “Who is Jorge Mario Bergoglio?” Pope Francis (Bergoglio himself) humbly replied, “I am a sinner. This is the most accurate definition. It is not a figure of speech, a literary genre. I am a sinner.” We all know the Gospel account of the woman caught in the act of adultery. In it, we are told the scribes and Pharisees “led a woman forward” and “made her stand in front of everyone.” I wonder how she felt at that moment. I imagine she felt humiliated,

FROM THE SUPER

VINCE CASCONE Vince Cascone is the superintendent of archdiocesan schools.

scared and full of shame. Just as our Holy Father is acutely aware of his own sinful nature,

I suspect the woman was also aware of hers. In the First Letter to Timothy, Paul writes: “The saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners — of whom I am the foremost” (1:15).

St. Gemma Galgani once said, “Think of all the sins the greatest sinners have committed, I have committed as many.” Whether we are talking about Paul, Augustine, Mother Teresa or Pope Francis, the great saints of our world seem to share the ability to be aware of their sins and their need for God’s mercy. Paul writes in the Letter to the Romans: “Where sin increased, grace abounded all the more” (5:20). God seems to take great sinners who are aware of their sins and their need for God’s mercy and flood them with his

grace. I suppose the message is that we are all sinners and it is important for us to be aware of our sinful ways. But God does not want us to live in that place of guilt and shame. We can see this in the example given to us by Pope Francis who uses the painting “The Calling of St. Matthew” by Caravaggio. The painting depicts the momentous encounter when Jesus called the sinful tax collector to follow him. Pope Francis reflects: “That’s me. I feel like him. . . . Here, this is me, a sinner on whom the Lord has turned his gaze.”

This same message can be true for you and me. In the Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas, we strive to work with parents in teaching the children about right and wrong. We teach them about the redemptive grace of Jesus. We teach them that Our Lord has turned his gaze upon each one of us. Please join me in praying this Lent for our students — and for ourselves — for the grace of wisdom to be aware of our sins and for our need of God’s mercy. Let us pray for the Lord to turn his gaze onto us.

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MARCH 13, 2020 | THELEAVEN.ORG

LOCAL NEWS

16

Chiefs punter Colquitt shares stories of evangelization By Joe Bollig joe.bollig@theleaven.org

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VERLAND PARK — Kansas City Chiefs punter and Super Bowl champion Dustin Colquitt told attendees of the 24th annual Men Under Construction conference here on Feb. 29 how one sports hero helped him appreciate what his Super Bowl LIV victory meant. Tim Tebow, a Heisman Trophy winner and former Denver Broncos quarterback, met Colquitt at the Kansans For Life annual Valentine’s Day banquet on Feb. 11. “I remember him saying, ‘Winning the Super Bowl is great and I’m proud of you on account of your family story,’” Colquitt recounted. “‘But now you have an even greater platform to talk about your faith.’” Colquitt utilized that new platform in an hourlong keynote address filled with Scripture quotes and anecdotes to more than 1,200 conference attendees, who nearly filled the pews of Ascension Church. He also brought to the conference two of his five children: Brinkley, 13, a seventh-grader; and Colston, 11, a fifth-grader. The Colquitts belong to St. Michael the Archangel Parish in Leawood and the children attend the school. Christina, his wife, teaches math and science there. The Colquitt family entered the Catholic Church in 2019. Colquitt comes from a family of athletes. Both his father and a brother sport Super Bowl rings and, with the Kansas City Chiefs’ victory in Miami, now so does he. But more importantly, said Colquitt, he comes from a family of committed Christians. Colquitt, who declared his faith in Christ at age 5 as a Protestant, was encouraged by his father to be an evangelist. “I remember my first opportunity to share my faith story,” said Colquitt. “My dad thought it would be a great idea . . . just to kind of slowly get us into telling about the name of Jesus. He said we should just start out right then into prison ministry.” “If you know about prison ministry,” he continued, “it starts in front of a glass window just this big, and you can’t see the tip of their nose. “And you have to tell them there’s hope in Christ. . . . You realize that some of those kids are never getting out. They’re going to get held there for a little bit, and then they’re going to the real deal.” He understood, at that time, by telling the prisoners about Jesus he was speaking life into the youths and men who had made terrible decisions in their lives. Colquitt told attendees that they

PHOTO BY JOE PASSANTINO

Dustin Colquitt, punter for the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs, delivers the keynote address at the annual Men Under Construction conference Feb. 29 at Church of the Ascension in Overland Park. have unique opportunities as men of influence to evangelize, and it doesn’t matter how old or who they are. “I listen to my kids, and they’re always looking for a place to preach the Gospel,” said Colquitt. “I think that’s really cool about them. “They don’t know it, but they’re doing it by their actions. And when they’re asked, they can back it up.” One day, when winter weather forced a school cancellation, he took his kids to the Hilltop Recreation Center in Overland Park. His boys were playing basketball with some other boys. His sons soon asked why the other boys couldn’t play on their CYO teams. “Then I started hitting them a little bit with the law,” said Colquitt. He explained how they weren’t Catholic, not within parish boundaries, etc. Then he took a step back. “What am I doing?” Colquitt said he asked himself. “Our kids are coming back and telling us they’re being fishers of boys, who are going to be men — the future of our parishes . . . and churches.” Colquitt, a fifth- and seventh-grade basketball coach, decided that those boys his sons met could come to his teams’ practices. One particular boy, who is not a practicing Christian, noticed that the teams prayed before and after practices. And eventually, he

King earns Eagle Award MAYETTA — Jackson Knox King, a member of St. Francis Xavier Parish here and Boy Scout Troop 173, has earned the rank of Eagle Scout. King was awarded his Eagle during a Court of Honor on Nov. 23, 2019. For his Eagle project, King restored the Hoyt City Jail. King built a hitching post, outhouse and bunk bed for the jail, as well as installing a wood burning stove and landscaping the area.

The Colquitt family mission statement We are the Colquitt family. We are followers of Jesus Christ, the Son of the one, true, living God. In our home, our first priority is to serve the Lord and then one another. Through Jesus Christ, all our needs are met daily. We come to him with the joys and concerns of our hearts by putting our lives in his hands. We strive to pray, minister, obey and know his word to further glorify his kingdom. We have chosen to be shining lights in this world. We will live a life filled with praise and honor for our everlasting God.

began to join in, too. “I asked myself, ‘How can I keep a kid from hearing Jesus’ name threeor four-plus times a week because he hasn’t registered for CYO,’” said Colquitt. Colquitt also talked to the men about the power of prayer. “[I’m going] to challenge you guys,” he said. “As opposed to saying, ‘I’ll be praying for you,’ do it right then. It’s so powerful.” Before he left for the Super Bowl, a man he knew wished him the best — and then paused right then to pray a powerful prayer. He wasn’t the only one. “For the first time in my whole career, I could feel the prayers,” he said. “People were mailing me rosaries. You better believe I tucked them

Atwell earns Eagle Award SHAWNEE — Brett Atwell, a member of St. Joseph Parish here and Boy Scout Troop 265 of Overland Park, has earned the rank of Eagle Scout. Atwell was awarded his Eagle during a Court of Honor on Jan. 26. For his Eagle Scout project, Atwell landscaped an area around the rectory at St. Joseph Church.

in my bag and took them with me to Miami. . . . It was amazing the letters of encouragement I received over the year . . . but also while going through RCIA (the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults). Colquitt ended his talk with a demonstration: balancing on a football. The football was a symbol of unstable, worldly things men sometimes build their lives upon. “This is basically my life, if football is the most important thing,” he said. “If I didn’t have my hand on this [ambo], I’d be going down . . . only a matter of time before I’d fall.” By contrast, if he stands on the sure word of God, he is steady. “So, stand on the word of God,” he said, “and you’ll be on solid ground.”

Murray earns Eagle Award LAWRENCE — Xavier Murray, a member of the St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center and Boy Scout Troop 55 here, has earned the rank of Eagle Scout. Murray was awarded his Eagle during a Court of Honor on Feb. 18. For his Eagle project, Murray built bat houses for the Baker Wetlands, a nature preserve and artificially sustained wetland south of Lawrence.

Profile for The Leaven

03 13 20 Vol. 41 No. 30  

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

03 13 20 Vol. 41 No. 30  

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

Profile for theleaven
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