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 October 3, 2011   •   VOL. 49, NO. 17   •   Oakland, CA
News in Brief

Children pray in school
A teacher leads students in prayer before class at Pope John Paul II School in Wilmington, Delaware. The constitutional question of where the line lies between a church school’s religious autonomy and the legal rights of its teachers comes before the U.S. Supreme Court Oct. 5, in the first week of the its term.
CNS photo/Don Blake
The Dialog

Child’s healing credited to Archbishop Sheen
James Fulton Engstrom is seen Sept. 7 with his parents, Travis and Bonnie Engstrom of Goodfield, Illinois. A tribunal of inquiry will investigate the alleged miraculous healing of the boy, who had no pulse for 61 minutes after his birth Sept. 16, 2010. His parents credit the intercession of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, a sainthood candidate who was from the Diocese of Peoria.
CNS photo/Jennifer Willems, The Catholic Post

Lumen Christi award-winner
Dominican Sister Gabriella Williams and Father Jack Wall, president of Catholic Extension, talk during their visit to the Duroville mobile home park near Thermal in Southern California. Sister Gabi, as she is known, is the 2011 winner of Catholic Extension Lumen Christi Award, conferred annually to recognize a U.S. Catholic’s lifelong ministerial efforts in one of the nation’s mission dioceses.
CNS photo/courtesy Catholic Extension

Phoenix Diocese drops wine at Communion

PHOENIX — The Phoenix Diocese said the wine that becomes Jesus’ blood at consecration will not be offered at every Sunday Mass, but instead will be reserved for special occasions, left to the determination of each parish pastor. The change will bring local Catholic celebration of the Eucharist into union with the practice of the faithful around the world, according to diocesan officials, who said receiving Communion under both kinds is uncommon in most countries.

After the Second Vatican Council called for more occasions when the cup could be offered to the laity — which had not been the practice for hundreds of years — the United States, the United Kingdom and Oceania received experimental permission to offer the cup to the faithful. The 1975 missal — the one currently used — allows for 14 times when the cup can be offered to the laity. In poor countries, Father Kieran Kleczewski, executive director of the Phoenix diocesan Office of Worship said, churches don’t have the resources to offer the chalice to the laity every time they celebrate Mass.

New chapel dedicated at national shrine

WASHINGTON — In a ceremony reflecting their Lebanese heritage, Maronite Catholics gathered Sept. 23 at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception for the consecration of a chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Lebanon. “For so long, so many dreamed to have something of our own in Mary’s house,” said Bishop Gregory J. Mansour of St. Maron of Brooklyn, N.Y., who consecrated and dedicated the chapel located near the shrine’s Memorial Hall. “I am so grateful for all those souls who made this day for Mary so beautiful.”

Catholic, other groups mourn inmate executions

WASHINGTON — Catholic and other groups mourned the executions Sept. 21 of Troy Davis in Georgia and of Lawrence Brewer in Texas. Davis, 42, was put to death for his conviction in the 1989 murder of off-duty Savannah, Ga., police officer Mark MacPhail. Brewer, 44, an admitted white supremacist, was executed for his role in the 1998 race-fueled murder of James Byrd Jr., who was dragged for miles from the back of a pickup truck. Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory of Atlanta and retired Bishop J. Kevin Boland of Savannah said, “The death penalty is irreversibly wrong when there is an execution of a person who may possibly be innocent. The conviction and death sentence of Mr. Davis was based on testimony of key witnesses and did not result from physical evidence.”

KC bishop testifies on abuse response

KANSAS CITY, Missouri — Bishop Robert W. Finn, who heads the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, testified before a Jackson County grand jury as part of an investigation into the diocese’s response to child abuse charges against a diocesan priest. “We’re doing the best we can to cooperate with law enforcement,” Finn told reporters after testifying Sept. 16 in the case of Father Shawn Ratigan, a Catholic priest charged with child pornography offenses in Clay County and in U.S. District Court.

Diocese gives university $1.2 million grant

WHEELING, W.Va. - Bishop Michael J. Bransfield of Wheeling-Charleston announced a $1.2 million grant from the diocese to Wheeling Jesuit University to assist with student recruitment in the diocese’s seven Catholic high schools and to help facilitate growth in the university’s health sciences program.

Movies seen influencing assisted suicide movement

WASHINGTON — An increase in the number of movies that present assisted suicide in a positive light is contributing to a renewed momentum to legalize physician-assisted suicide, especially in the New England states, a panelist said at a Sept. 20 webinar sponsored by the National Catholic Partnership on Disability. Films such as “Million Dollar Baby” and “The Sea Inside,” both rated PG-13 as containing material that may be inappropriate for children under 13, “dull our repugnance” for assisted suicide and “suggest that some lives are not worth living,” said Capuchin Franciscan Father Dan Mindling, academic dean at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Md.

Church’s mission to serve ‘all who come our way’

FORT WORTH, Texas — The Catholic Church serves “all who come our way because we are Catholic,” Bishop Kevin W. Vann of Fort Worth told participants at Catholic Charities USA’s first Poverty Summit and National Gathering. “We repeatedly emphasize that our mission to serve all in need comes from the fact that we are Catholic,” Bishop Vann said, “and that since one of the marks of the Church is “universal,’ that applies to our call to ministry and mission here. We are who we are.”

Catholic entertainer Dolores Hope dies at 102

LOS ANGELES — Dolores Hope, a lifelong Catholic who was the widow of comedian Bob Hope and an entertainer in her own right, died Sept. 19 at age 102 at her home in Toluca Lake outside of Los Angeles. With her husband, Mrs. Hope supported numerous Catholic causes over the years and continued to do so after his death in 2003. Among other efforts, the couple were the benefactors of the Chapel of Our Lady of Hope of Pontmain, France, at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.

New Orleans charities get $15M for oil spill

NEW ORLEANS — Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of New Orleans has received the largest single grant in its history — $15 million from the Baton Rouge Area Foundation — to oversee a collaborative of nonprofit organizations that will provide direct assistance, counseling and job force training to coastal Louisiana fishing families affected by the 2010 BP oil spill. The grant, announced Sept. 7, was part of the original $100 million in funding that BP gave to the Baton Rouge Area Foundation in 2010 to establish a fund targeted to help oil rig workers and oil rig supply companies affected by the spill.


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