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The Catholic New World
News Digest: Week in Summary
Issue of January 21, 2007

The following items are condensed. For the complete article, please read the print edition of The Catholic New World. To subscribe, call (312) 655-7777.


'Dwell in My Love' Sunday
Dwell in My Love Sunday will be held Jan. 21. Parishes and individuals are encouraged to celebrate this day by praying for the end of racism. During liturgies that Sunday, parishes can celebrate the event by including prayers for racial reconciliation in the intercessions, addressing racial justice issues in the homily, or incorporating multi-cultural symbols or music into the liturgy. For more information, visit www.dwellinmylove.org or call (312) 751-8336.

Consecrated Life celebrated
The annual World Day for Consecrated Life will be held Feb. 4. This event is an opportunity to recognize and give thanks for those who have consecrated their lives to God and the church through vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. It is also a chance to learn more about consecrated life and pray for future vocations. Consecrated lives include those in religious congregations or secular institutes, in addition to consecrated virgins, who make a profession to God through the local bishop.


Benedict: Respect for rights the only path to peace
Condemning continuing bloodshed in Iraq and Afghanistan, renewed fighting in Somalia and Sri Lanka and the ongoing holding of hostages in Colombia, Pope Benedict XVI said respect for the human rights and legitimate aspirations of peoples is the only path to peace. "The Holy See will never tire of reiterating that armed solutions achieve nothing, as we saw in Lebanon last summer," the pope said Jan. 8 in his annual address to ambassadors serving at the Vatican.

Baptism is 'an invitation to freedom'
Pope Benedict XVI closed out the Christmas season at the Vatican with an annual Mass to baptize infants and kept up a tradition of his own - an extemporaneous sermon on the meaning of the sacrament. Baptism is not some "magical" rite of words and water, but a lasting invitation to human freedom to cooperate with the Holy Spirit, the pope said Jan. 7, the feast of the Baptism of the Lord.

Annual Catholic Appeal hopes for another banner year
Immediately after finishing the 2006 Annual Catholic Appeal-the most successful ever in the Archdiocese of Chicago-pastors, parishioners and stewardship and development staff members will start all over. The 2006 appeal netted about $13 million in pledges, about $12 million of which was expected to be collected by the official end date Jan. 31, said Ray Coughlin, director of the Office for Stewardship and Development.

Vatican paper criticizes Iraq executions
The Vatican newspaper criticized continuing executions in Iraq as a "cruel manipulation" of justice and said the country is veering in the wrong direction. The comments on the front page of L'Osservatore Romano Jan. 15 followed the gruesome hanging of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's half-brother, who was decapitated by the hangman's noose when his body dropped through the gallows floor.

Bishop comments on Iraqi security
Every U.S. action or policy in Iraq "ought to be evaluated in light of our nation's moral responsibility to help Iraqis to live with security and dignity in the aftermath of U.S. military action," said Bishop William S. Skylstad of Spokane, Wash., president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Life events remember Roe
As 250 Catholics from the Archdiocese of Chicago-most of them teenagers and young adults-prepare to march to the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court to protest the 1972 Roe v. Wade decision, those who stayed home will have an opportunity to march in the city to make their voices heard. The second annual March for Life in Chicago will take place Jan. 21 following the 12:30 p.m. Mass at Holy Name Cathedral, State and Superior Streets. Marchers will walk from the cathedral to Chicago Avenue, and then east to Michigan Avenue, with a prayerful vigil planned to take place at the Water Tower monument.

Redemptorist Fr. Edward Wilhelm celebrates 60 years of service
As a young man entering religious life, Redemptorist Father Edward Wilhelm could not have imagined the different places he would go or the different ministries in which he would serve. After 60 years in the priesthood, Wilhelm has traveled from Chicago to Brazil to North Dakota and is now back in Chicago. He has had plenty of interesting experiences along the way.

Polish bishops: Vatican to decide on fate of communist collaborators
The Polish bishops' conference has set out measures for easing the controversy caused by the Jan. 7 resignation of the archbishop of Warsaw, saying decisions about bishops who collaborated with the former communist regime would be left to the Vatican.
After an emergency bishops' meeting in Warsaw Jan. 12, Archbishop Jozef Michalik of Przemysl, conference president, said there had been unanimous agreement that a five-member church commission, created in October, would study secret police files on a Catholic bishop only if the bishop in question requested it.

Stem-cell vote 'misguided'
A pro-life official of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops criticized House passage Jan. 11 of a bill that would expand federal funding of stem-cell research that involves the destruction of human embryos, but expressed confidence that an expected presidential veto of the "misguided and unethical legislation" would stand.
Richard Doerflinger, deputy director of the bishops' Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities, said in a statement that the 253-174 vote indicated that there were not enough votes to override the veto that President George W. Bush has promised.

Teacher uses life experience
Nancy Garrity thought that Sister Jean Anne McGrath was a little crazy when she asked her to teach seventh and eighth grade 17 years ago. Up until that time, Garrity had taught the youngest students, she said, and she didn't know anything about teaching young adolescents. But she was starting new teaching job at St. John Fisher School on Chicago's far Southwest Side, and that was what McGrath, the principal had open.

Principal honored for leadership
Grade school principals don't always get a lot of accolades or recognition. For Thomas Sedor, principal at Infant Jesus of Prague Elementary School in Flossmoor, the rewards come from working with the kids. "It is really all about the kids, to see their successes," Sedor said. For his dedication to the students and the school, Sedor has been honored with the Dr. Robert J. Kealey Distinguished Principal Award from the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA). Sedor is one of 12 Catholic school principals nationwide to receive the award.

Teen writes essay about value of life
As part of Respect Life Month in October, the Respect Life Ministry held an essay contest for eighth graders, in which they discussed their values of respect for life. The following is the winning essay, by David Markiewicz an 8th grader at St. Mary of Annunciation School in Mundelein. Life is a gift from God, so life must be cherished. God loves us and fills us with the grace of the Holy Spirit. With the abundant gifts of God, we can live in happiness.

Why I donated my Christmas money to the Chicago Food Depository
Ariana's grandparents' Christmas gift to each of their 10 grandchildren was money to donate to an organization of each grandchild's choice. Each child shared a reflection explaining to whom and why they were giving the money. This essay was Mariana's contribution to this family event. Mariana Howard-Pez is a catechist in the religious education program at Good Shepherd Parish in Chicago. She is a senior at Whitney Young High School.

Building the Kingdom of God takes a 'Common Effort'
The Common Effort Campaign is a four-year campaign aimed at developing a strong pastoral youth ministry network for Vicariate III, located in the inner-most urban area of our city. The youth ministers who started it hope to create opportunities for leadership formation and offer support and resources needed by to minister effectively to youth, leading them to form part of the whole Body of Christ.

Candy shop sells sweet treats, helps ministries
If browsers were to peek into the windows of Poverello Delights in Highland, they wouldn't be surprised to find the candy store bustling with activity. What might be surprising is that the proprietor is a nun. Open since October, Poverello Delights is the realization of a dream that Franciscan Sister Evelyn Brokish believes to be the result of divine providence.

> Front Page

Church Clips by Dolores Madlener
Dolores Madlener
a column of benevolent

Lions and tigers and Bears - Sister Jean, the Football Queen, aka Providence Sister Jean Kenny, has an early edition Clips headline for Sunday's game as we go to press: "Blustery Bears/Sideline Saints-even-on-a-Sunday." Sister Swami predicts the score will be 27-24. . . . And on another continent, a lay missionary who once worked in Chicago, has mixed emotions. Sherry Meyer, in her 17th year ministering among the people of Arua, Uganda, was once a Chicago Catholic schools consultant for the arch. She is also a native of Indianapolis and her ministry is co-sponsored by both archdioceses' missions offices! Meyer's December newsletter says she was able to catch the last quarter of the Sunday-after-Thanksgiving Indianapolis Colts game on ESPN in the wee hours of that Monday morning. She was nostalgic. She couldn't see her dad, but knew he was working as a security guard in the RCA Dome press box at the home game. Come Feb. 4, if it's da Bears vs da Colts, Meyer will have a happy dilemma.

Coming up / up and coming - Lexington College, the women's hospitality management college in the West Loop will reach 30 years of age in 2007. Students in this private school select from courses in culinary arts, event planning, hotel/restaurant management or social development. During the academic year, Mass is celebrated weekdays in the college's chapel, which is also open daily for private reflection and prayer. See www.Lexingtoncollege.edu for the full story.

Whatta life - Benedictine Father Theodore Heck celebrated his 100th birthday Jan. 16 at Saint Meinrad Archabbey in Indiana. It's a place he's called home since 1918, outside of 18 years he spent at a parish as an associate. Ordained in 1929, he is currently the oldest Benedictine monk in the country. Heck helped develop seminary curriculum in the United States and did pioneer work in accreditation for schools. An article in 2004 said he was still rising at 5:30 a.m. with his brother monks to pray. He uses an electric cart for long distances, but usually walks. Spry and witty, he attended Catholic University of America in the 1930s and sports a Ph.D. after his name.

Endgame - St. James Chess Club (Arlington Heights) held its third annual Bulldog Cup Chess Tournament and pizza party recently. All 52 members, K through 5, who played got a blue ribbon. Jeff Wiewel, a national US Chess Federation tournament director and St. James parent, was on hand to assure USCF rules were followed. Winners in grades 3-5 have played in large scholastic tourneys in the area and have USCF ratings. Members competed in six area tourneys. The club is in its seventh year.

'As Time Goes By' - The annual reunion tour of the 5th Army veterans of World War II's Italian Campaign, their families and friends will visit Rome, Anzio, Monte Cassino, Pisa, Florence, Venice and more, plus American military cemeteries. Vets who battled Nazi forces from 1943-45 are invited to join the May 7-18 tour of battle sites. Call Sy Canton at (561) 865-8495 or write him at 5121 B Nesting Way, Delray Beach, FL 33484.

'Salam Aleikom' - Zenit is an international news agency that provides coverage of events, documents and issues about the Catholic Church. Reporting includes what's happening with Pope Benedict, his travels, talks, writings, audiences, as well as news about other church leaders and the Vatican. Its regular features include interviews with leading lay Catholics, like researchers, politicians, writers or entertainers. Its free dispatches at www.zenit.org are in English, Spanish, French, German, Portuguese and Italian. Now, in order to be "a bridge of dialogue between cultures and religion," Zenit has launched an edition in Arabic. (Vatican Radio has an Arabic program also.) Arab Christians have been hungry to read the pope's teachings and church events in their own language. At the moment the new service is only available by electronic mail through a free subscription available at: [email protected].

Making things happen - Father George Clements, director of One Church- One Addict, helped bring some Christmas cheer to clients of Haymarket Center, a substance abuse outreach founded by Msgr. Ignatius McDermott and Dr. Jim West. Clements celebrated midnight Mass and one at 9:30 a.m. for the many men and women clients in Haymarket's residential programs, and for their guests. . . . Viatorian Father Tom McCarthy, actively ministering at 86, will be one of 10 unsung heroes getting a 2007 Hearts of Gold Award from Arlington Heights officials on Feb. 17. Songwriter, Irish fiddler, and author of "Forever a Priest," McCarthy will walk away with the Young at Heart award for his ability to spread joy up to the maximum.

Why I'm a believer - (in eucharistic adoration), from Holy Cross College (Notre Dame, Ind.) campus minister Bob Kloska: "I've seen the fruit in the lives of people who do it. My students have told me remarkable stories about things that happen when they pray this way." And Clips has heard from readers who appreciate Kloska's PR on behalf of eucharistic adoration.

Send your benevolent gossip to:
Church Clips
721 N. LaSalle St.,
Chicago, IL 60610
or via e-mail.


Movies at a Glance
Capsule reviews of movies from the U.S. Catholic Conference's Office for Film and Broadcasting, judged according to artistic merit and moral suitability.