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Church Clips by Dolores Madlener

Dolores Madlenera column of benevolent gossip

  • Pastor emeritus' non-pooch

    Father Edwin Bohula , pastor emeritus of St. James at Sag Bridge Parish (Lemont) and a retired U.S. Marine Chaplain , used to have a big Rottweiler named Goliath . Today he cares for two stray cats, Miszka (Polish for “Teddy Bear”), a five-year-old fluffy calico who used to climb on Bohula’s lap until Cat Belleau came along and demanded that spot two years ago. A steel blue Egyptian feline, he isn’t named for Lee Marvin’s Cat Ballou ” movie, but for the Belleau Lake Forest Preserve in Des Plaines where he was found, starving and almost beyond his lucky nine lives. Bohula couldn’t resist taking him in. “I don’t have to talk to or pet Cat Belleau,” he says. The cat’s just content to feel safe purring on the lap of a retired leatherneck.
  • Coffee, tea or ?

    — Flying charter these days is “in.” The latest charter news comes from the Vatican travel office. It has partnered with a small Italian jet company, Mistral , to offer flights to holy sites around the world. The jets will have interiors decorated with sacred inscriptions and will travel to a variety of places in the Holy Land, Spain, Mexico and beyond. BBC News reports the first flight was on Aug. 27 from Rome to Lourdes, and that the vicar of Rome, Cardinal Camillo Ruini , was going to be on the first flight.
  • Jesus, the tour guide —

    It will be the 13th journey to the Holy Land for Father Tom Mescall of St. Denis Parish (W. 83rd Place) this October, and the 25th visit for Father George McKenna , 88, associate chaplain at Midway Airport’s Chapel . They say with each trip to their favorite traditional sites they always experience something new. Oh, and they fly commercial.
  • Parish potpourri

    St. Alphonsus Parish (W. Wellington), beginning its 125th year, recorded 5,677 “hits” on their popular Web site in a recent month. The parish was founded in 1882. . . . Archbishop Fernand Frank , of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg , celebrated the 9 a.m. Mass Aug. 19 at St. Peter Church (Skokie), during a pastoral visit to the Midwest to meet descendants of the many Luxembourgers who settled here in the 19th and early 20th centuries. . . . Lena Paschke of St. Mary of Celle Parish (Berwyn) was born in Connecticut 100 years ago last month, and was honored at a Mass on Aug. 4 in her home parish in Berwyn. . . . There are currently eight members of Ascension Parish (Oak Park) employed by the J.S. Paluch Company , now that Michele VonEbers recently joined the music/liturgy division, World Library Publications . Paluch is nicknamed the church bulletin company, but is a much larger entity.
  • Junior Clips —

    Some schools in the arch are too small to have their own football squads, so last year they linked up to produce two outstanding teams. This year St. Joan of Arc (Skokie) is inviting guys from St. Peter (Skokie), Pope John XXIII (Evanston) and Northside Catholic Academy (N. Glenwood) to do it again. . . . A new book, “Jesuit High Schools Make a World of Difference, Their Graduates Make a Difference in the World,” by Eileen Wirth , while spotlighting the order’s work in education, mentions that it just so happens, singer/actor Harry Connick, Jr. , comedian Bob Newhart , and TV’s Tim Russert all are alums of Jesuit high schools.
  • Saint padre?

    Father Vincent Capodanno was a Navy Chaplain who died on a Vietnam battlefield Sept. 4, 1967. Wounded, he administered the last rites to other soldiers until a third shot killed him. There’s been a book written about him, “ Grunt Padre ” (a term of camaraderie given by fellow Marines), and other tributes, including a possible movie. On this 40th anniversary of his death, the cause for his canonization moves along, and prayers continue to be answered through his intercession. A holy card with a prayer to this “ Servant of God ” is available through the Archdiocese for the Military Services, P.O. Box 4469, Washington D.C. 20017. While they will send one or two cards free, be aware the “Cause” is self-funded. The soft-cover book is available for $15.95 locally by calling CMJ Books at (708) 636-2995. A memorial Mass will be offered on Sept. 4 at Staten Island, Capodanno’s home town, and at Camp Pendleton , Calif.
  • Amazing art

    — The [Catholic] Guild for the Blind is successful in concentrating on their members’ abilities and potential, not negatives. That’s why their sixth annual “ Passionate Focus ” of original art works by artists with vision loss is so remarkable. An opening reception and silent auction is 5-9 p.m. Sept. 6. The exhibit is open until Sept. 20 at River East Art Center , 435 East Illinois. Curious? Take a peek at creations by 19 artists with vision impairment, on line at
  • People update

    Father Mike Pfleger , pastor of St. Sabina (W. 78th Place), helped parishioners put up 40 billboards around the city that headline: “ Stop the Gun Flow .” . . . Betty Flynn , a right arm for critical tasks at Misericordia for 33 years, is retiring, and “will be sorely missed.” . . . Viatorian Brother Leo V. Ryan celebrated his 80th birthday in Poland recently at an academic convocation, of course! He was also awarded a “ Medal of Merit ” by the Polish government for his “civic and educational contribution.”