CARROLL, Iowa (CNS) – Keynote speakers at the annual “Rekindle” event for teens in the Diocese of Sioux City emphasized God’s love to those in attendance, something that seems to be lost on today’s young people. “That’s because they spend their day in search of constant validation,” said recording artist Noelle Garcia. “So much has to do with being validated on social media,” she said. “Their culture is such an influence on them,” added Sean Forrest, another speaker with a music background. “I tell them, ‘Don’t let your emotions deceive you into making choices. You need your heart, but you also need your intellect.’” The main speakers shared their faith journeys with more than 500 students in grades seven through 12 at Kuemper High School in Carroll, Iowa. Four breakout sessions and a service project rounded out the day in early October. This year’s Rekindle theme was “The Gift of God That is Within You.” Music was an important part of the event and featured two nationally known musicians.
It has become a tradition at Cabrini High School that the current sophomore class annually hosts the “Sophomore Charity Challenge,” an event in which Cabrini sophomores and area Catholic boys’ high schools donate either five canned goods or $5 for admission to an evening of competitive games. Proceeds are donated to a charity of the sophomore Student Council’s choice. This year, the Hispanic Apostolate was the sophomore’s favored charity. The Hispanic Apostolate provides assistance to Hispanic immigrants through a variety of pastoral services including food assistance as well as many other needed services. This is our mission as daughters of Mother Cabrini, patron of immigrants.
When Nancy Walsh discovered she had Stage 3 breast cancer in mid-August, she treated it as you would expect of a veteran coach. She formed a spiritual team to pull her through the difficult weeks that await during her forthcoming 10th basketball season on the Crescents’ bench. “God is the head coach. Mother Cabrini is the associate head coach. “My management team consists of my guardian angel and the doctors who’ll will treat me. My co-captains are Mary Cordero and Janelle Bozant. I consider myself the point guard, and my teammates are the players, family, friends and fans in the stand.” That sounds like a championship team to me. “The players have been amazing since I told them about (the cancer),” Walsh said. “They’re like my teammates because they’re getting me through this. That’s the reason I get up for 5:45 practice every morning. If the kids are going to be here, then I want to be with them.” Walsh came to Cabrini from the tough south side of Chicago via the University of New Orleans where she was an assistant women’s basketball coach under Joey Favaloro.
“Family is a key component of our society,” said Religious of the Sacred Heart Sister Bonnie Kearney. “And to not know one’s family history makes building the larger community of society more difficult.” Sister Bonnie said family history is a treasure that people are often too busy to share with each other, “so they don’t know their own history and can’t celebrate it.” With families reuniting during the holidays, the Religious of the Sacred Heart joined with the nearby Community Book Center near the former St. Rose of Lima Church on Bayou Road to offer free workshops on Saturdays through Dec. 1 to teach families techniques on sharing their past while enjoying their holiday meals together. “These events can give them new, interesting and involving ways to gain more insight into their own families so that they might have them and celebrate them,” she said. “It’s not a white thing, it’s not a black thing, it’s a family thing.”
The music was as varied as were the moves. Combined, these two elements helped keep the attention of the students with challenges in a special, hour-long dance class at Loyola University New Orleans. For the third semester, Lisa A. Richardson has held a 10-week class on Saturday afternoons through Loyola University’s Preparatory Arts Dance Program. It is open to students ages 5-13 with varied challenges such as autism, ADHD and Down syndrome.
It is something we all do. Sit down to watch a beloved old sitcom or movie from childhood, only to realize, “Oh, that’s what they were talking about.” Blessedly, some comedic themes and jokes were written cleverly to go over the heads of children in ’80s and ’90s television entertainment. The same can be said for positive messages, too. One rainy afternoon sitting down to watch one of my childhood family favorites, “Mary Poppins,” one particular line stuck out to me. In the scene where Mary Poppins gives Jane and Michael the medicine after being caught out in the rain, the children ask for more. Mary Poppins swiftly responds with, “Enough is as good as a feast.” I have seen “Mary Poppins” countless times from childhood into adulthood, yet, I never even heard that line until I was in my mid-30s and a mother of little children. The Holy Spirit must have been inspiring that particular viewing, because since hearing it, I have often repeated it to my children and even myself in various situations.
Jack Jezreel of Louisville admits something up front. “I will not hide this,” he says with a smile. “I am a Pope Francis groupie.” The Catholic social justice evangelist from Louisville, Kentucky, came to New Orleans last week to offer a workshop on Catholic thought, prayer and action, and in his mind, if the three don’t burst out of the relatively safe boundaries of the parish, then, really, what’s the point? Before Vatican II, Jezreel said, people naturally “came to associate their Catholicism with how often and how committed they were to the parish block.” He said that changed after the Second Vatican Council, which suggested that ministry should happen “everywhere.” “One way that is expressed is that at the end of liturgy, there’s this theologically sublime and spiritually potent word, and that is ‘Go!’” Jezreel said. “Not ‘Go, we’ve prayed long enough,’ and not ‘Go, it’s time to vacuum,’ but it’s ‘Go’ as in the definition of what needs to happen next in terms of our faith. It’s ‘Go, and minister to the world. Take what you have received here and bring it into the world and be a healing presence.’”
Archbishop Rummel quarterback Chandler Fields (18) fends off Brother Martin defender Michael Faust during a Catholic League game at Tad Gormley Stadium on Oct. 20. Rummel used a well-balanced offense and solid defensive effort to prevail, 17-0, for the Raiders’ sixth consecutive victory and seventh in eight games.
In 1979, when Kaven Donald walked into Orleans Parish Prison to begin a 198-year sentence on drug charges, a sign on the wall told incoming inmates to leave their belt, jewelry, loose change – “and all hope” – at the door. But Donald, who served most of his time at Angola, never lost hope, finally winning parole in 2012 after numerous failed attempts. In his early days of freedom, pounding the pavement to find employment, Donald recalls feeling bewildered when he would overhear strangers frivolously complaining about the weather. He was still trying to figure out how to operate in world he hadn’t known from ages 28 to 60. “When you come out (of prison) and see the opportunities, it presses you to do better,” said Donald, one of three formerly incarcerated men currently employed by Catholic Charities’ Corner-stone Builders program, which works to ease the re-entry and nurture the independence of returning citizens from the time they exit prison gates. “I believe, after living around those guys (in prison) all those years, that everybody – everybody – wants to be better,” Donald said. “There are so many obstacles against us, but we keep pressing and we keep pressing because there are people out there helping us.”
Hannah Volpi (1) of Archbishop Chapelle eyes a shot of the volleyball over the heads of Dominican duo Zoe Smith, left, and Olivia Peyton during one of several “Pink Games” local Catholic schools stage during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The visiting Chipmunks, ranked No. 3 in Division I , overcame a close match with their host, in five games on Oct. 16.
Just 12 weeks after conception, a baby living inside his mother’s womb has every organ he will ever need for life “on the outside.” To put this amazing fact a different way: 12 weeks after conception, the main thing a baby needs is time to grow. This 12-week milestone of prenatal development was made tangible to students at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton School in Kenner at the conclusion of their school Mass on Oct. 4. In observance of October’s “Respect-Life Month,” members of St. Elizabeth’s Grandparents Club donated and distributed soft plastic models representing a 12-week-old unborn baby to nearly 500 students. The tiny models, blessed before Mass by Divine Mercy’s pastor Father David Dufour, were wrapped in blankets hand-crocheted by parishioners. The effort, called “The Snuggle Project,” was hatched by Divine Mercy parishioners Barbara Sutphen and Gloria Jean Capiton to enhance the elementary school’s long-standing practice of having the entire student body name and spiritually adopt unborn babies – from conception to birth – over the course of the nine-month school year.
UNIVERSITY OF HOLY CROSS, fall festival, Oct. 27, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Food, arts, crafts, music, trunk-or-treat (noon-3 p.m.); and open house, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., 4123 Woodland Drive, Algiers. uhcno.edu. Also, 22nd annual Prayer Breakfast, Nov. 8, 7:30 a.m., Metairie Country Club, 580 Woodvine Ave., Metairie. Guest speaker: Dennis Lauscha, president of the New Orleans Saints and New Orleans Pelicans. Cost: $60 a person; $40 for UHC alums. Reservation deadline: Nov. 2. Details: firstname.lastname@example.org, 398-2206. ST. MARY’S DOMINICAN HIGH, second annual Dominican Makers’ Market, Nov. 3, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Locally handmade art, crafts and products in Alumnae Hall, the dining hall, the Sr. Ambrose Reggio, O.P., gym and Alumnae Business Alley where Dominican alumnae businesses will be highlighted. Free event, with proceeds benefitting the Alumnae Association. For vendor applications, call alumnae director Celeste Anding, email@example.com. 7701 Walmsley Ave., New Orleans.
As a Catholic pediatrician who specializes in treating children who have been sexually abused, Dr. Angelo Giardino is shaken every time he hears kids explain in their own words how they were violated by a trusted adult. “That is something you never want to hear again,” said Giardino, the Philadelphia-born chair of the department of pediatrics of University of Utah Health in Salt Lake City. Reflecting on the principles of the military and the nuclear power, airline and medical industries – where one inadvertent mistake can lead to a catastrophic failure – representatives of seven Catholic dioceses across the country met in New Orleans last week to continue their discussions on how the church can incorporate “high reliability organization” (HRO) practices into its commitment to eliminate sexual abuse.
Para: Todas las parroquias y escuelas de la Arquidiócesis de Nueva Orleáns: Queridas hermanas y hermanos en Cristo: A través de una gran cantidad de datos confiables y válidos, los medios de comunicación y, la gravedad de la epidemia de opioides, nos damos cuenta de que existe un grave problema de drogas que, afecta la seguridad y la salud de todas las personas de nuestra comunidad, especialmente de nuestros jóvenes. Las drogas son un factor clave detrás de muchos problemas sociales como el crimen, la violencia, los accidentes, las enfermedades mentales, el suicidio, las muertes por sobredosis y otros. Es triste informar que, 2,500 adolescentes, tienen un trastorno por el abuso de sustancias y, necesitan una intervención clínica. Otros 5,000 estudiantes necesitan servicios de intervención, solo para detener la progresión antes de que se vuelva más serio y adictivo. Hay 15,391 adultos jóvenes en Nueva Orleáns, entre las edades de 18 a 25 años, que experimentarán un trastorno por el uso de sustancias este año. En 2017, hubo 494 muertes por sobredosis de drogas, 64 de las cuales fueron por marihuana mesclada con fentanyl.
To: All Parishes and Schools in the Archdiocese of New Orleans: Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ: Through an abundance of reliable and valid data, the media and the seriousness of the opioid epidemic, we realize that there is a serious drug problem that affects the safety and health of all people in our community, particularly our youth. Drugs are a key factor behind many societal problems such as crime, violence, accidents, mental illness, suicide, overdose deaths and others. It is sad to report that 2,500 adolescents have a substance abuse disorder and are in need of clinical intervention. An additional 5,000 students are in need of intervention services just to stop the progression before it becomes more serious and addictive. There are 15,391 young adults in New Orleans between the ages of 18 to 25 who will experience a Substance Use Disorder this year. In 2017, there were 494 deaths due to drug overdoses, 64 of those deaths were from fentanyl-laced marijuana. As a people of faith who believe in the Gospel message, we boldly state that our children deserve safe and drug-free environments. This can become a reality if we work together as a faith community with government leaders, teachers, parents, caregivers and those who interact with our young people. Drug prevention is the first and best defense.
We brought home a new puppy recently, bringing an equal ratio of canines to humans. Life is never dull in our small household. It was a somewhat unexpected decision. But as with most things in life, when you know, you just know. These past six months have been something of a roller coaster. Continually, it seems, I’ve been reminded of the meaning of commitment. Commitment to my husband, my job, my family, my friends. The first two definitions listed for “commitment” at first seem contradictory. “The state or quality of being dedicated to a cause, activity, etc.,” reads the initial entry. Directly below: “an engagement or obligation that restricts freedom of action.” Reading those definitions initially, I sided with the second one. Yes, I told myself after a particularly difficult emotional time in my marriage, this commitment has certainly restricted my own freedom.
If you are an LSU football fan, the 2018 edition should be one of your all-time-favorite teams. Think about it. When’s the last time you can say an LSU football team overachieved? That certainly wasn’t true in the Les Miles era. As much success as Miles had (two BCS title games, two SEC titles, one national title), there was always that queasy feeling inside that this litany of Top 5 recruiting classes should have accomplished more. The overachievers, this season, are many. Tailback Nick Brossette, banished to the bench after last year’s fumble on the opening play in an upset loss to Troy, led the SEC in rushing touchdowns with 10. Running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire, allegedly too tiny to be an effective back in best league in the land, is averaging 4.96 yards a carry. He has five rushing touchdowns.
Hurling insults and being indifferent to other people’s lives is the first step along the winding path that leads to killing them, at least figuratively, Pope Francis said. By warning that “whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment,” Jesus equates hatred with murder, the pope said Oct. 17 during his weekly general audience. “Indifference kills. It’s like telling someone, ‘You’re dead to me,’ because you’ve killed them in your heart. Not loving is the first step to killing; and not killing is the first step to loving,” he told pilgrims in St. Peter’s Square. Continuing his series of talks on the Ten Commandments, the pope reflected on Christ’s explanation of the Fifth Commandment, “Thou shall not kill.” “Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift,” Jesus said according to St. Matthew’s Gospel. Although Christians should have “an attitude of reconciliation with people who we have had problems with,” Pope Francis said that sometimes, even while waiting for Mass to begin, “we gossip a bit and speak bad about others.”
To my discredit, I’ve been something of an armchair environmentalist. I tinker with recycling and composting. Yet, I’ve lived as if the grim effects of global warming would impact my children’s children, not me. I’ll be long gone when the worst of it hits. Except, it looks like I may not be. The United Nations recently released a disturbing report on the threats – coming in the next 20 years – of climate change. Its findings are so dire and its call-to-action so dramatic that readers might be tempted to dismiss them or despair over them. Neither is an option for Catholics who have such powerful resources, theological and spiritual, for responding. But first the report. Numerous scientists from around the world on the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) base their conclusions on extensive and numerous studies. They argue that it is still possible to keep global temperature within a manageable range, but it will be very difficult. The U.S. has actually reduced its greenhouse emissions over the last decade while the world’s have increased. Yet, the U.S. remains the second-largest emitter (after China) and produces more than twice as much as the third-largest (India).
VATICAN CITY (CNS) – Unless they recognize themselves as sinners rescued by Jesus, adults cannot be effective in helping young people find the path to faith and doing God’s will, Cardinal Blase J. Cupich of Chicago told the Synod of Bishops. “We must always keep fresh in our minds our own story of how Christ, the good Samaritan, did not pass by, but poured his oil of tenderness in our wounds, lifted us up, redeemed what was unredeemable on our own and opened for us a new future,” the cardinal told the synod Oct. 10. As synod members began their second week of meetings, their speeches in the general sessions focused on the section of the synod working document dealing with “vocational discernment” and “the art of accompanying.” Cardinal Cupich quoted the working document’s assertion that “for young people, it is particularly important that mentors recognize their own humanity and fallibility.”