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News Digest

Issue of August 16 – August 29, 2009The following items are condensed. For the complete articles, please read the print edition of The Catholic New World. To subscribe, call (312) 534-7777.

News Update

Polish seminary benefit set

Cardinal George and Archbishop Mieczyslaw Mokrzycki of Lwów will attend the sixth-annual benefit dinner for the Bishop Abramowicz Seminary Program Sept. 1, at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers, 301 E. North Water St. Archbishop Mokrzycki, secretary to Pope Benedict XVI, was the past personal secretary to Pope John Paul II until his death in 2005.

The Bishop Abramowicz Seminary Program has recruited seminarians in Poland since September 1999.

The benefit dinner begins with cocktails at 5 p.m. followed by dinner at 6 p.m. A silent auction is included. Tickets are $175 per person. For tickets, call Camille Kopielski at (847) 394-2520 or Marian Skawski at (708) 246-9165.

School looks for 43 new students

St. Agnes of Bohemia School, 2643 S. Central Park Ave., is looking for 43 new students who had been enrolled in public schools.

The school has received a $43,000 grant from the Big Shoulders Fund allowing it to grant each new student's family a $1,000 scholarship - but only if it can register all 43 new students.

New preschoolers or kindergarten students who do not have siblings currently enrolled in Catholic schools also may be eligible for the $1,000 scholarships. Families who have children enrolled at St. Agnes and refer new families may be eligible for $250 scholarships.

For information, call the school at (773) 522-0143.

News Digest

Cuban-American confirmed as ninth US ambassador to the Vatican

Catholic theologian Miguel Diaz was confirmed by the U.S. Senate Aug. 4 as the ninth U.S. ambassador to the Vatican. A professor of theology at the College of St. Benedict in St. Joseph, Minn., and St. John's University in Collegeville, Minn., Diaz is the first Hispanic to serve in the post.

Diaz issued a statement through St. John's University Aug. 5, saying he was grateful to President Obama "for the confidence he has invested in me" and to the Senate for its vote. "I am honored to be given the responsibility of representing the people of the United States to the Holy See," he said in the statement. "I very much appreciate the support of all those who have reached out to me and to my family with their prayers and best wishes during this process."

Low confession numbers prompt creative outreach by dioceses, churches

Statistics show decreasing numbers of Catholics going to confession, but rather than discouraging churches those numbers are only encouraging them to be more creative in their outreach.

A 2008 study conducted by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University in Washington revealed threequarters of Catholics reported they never participate in the sacrament of reconciliation or they do so less than once a year.