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Catholic Voice

May 18, 2015   •   VOL. 53, NO. 10   •   Oakland, CA
News in Brief

people carry food

Displaced people who fled areas of conflict waged by Boko Haram militants carry food supplies on their heads April 15 as they walk away from a special prayer service at St. Theresa's Cathedral in Yola, Nigeria.

World expo
An artist's rendering shows the exterior of Holy See's 747-square-foot Pavilion at the Milan Expo 2015, the newest edition of the every-five-years world's fair. The expo will focus on guaranteeing healthy, safe and sufficient food for everyone, while respecting the planet. One of 140 countries represented at this year's "Universal Exposition," the Vatican chose for its pavilion the theme: "Non di solo pane" (Not by Bread Alone). Expo Milan 2015 is expected to draw more than 20 million visitors to its 1.1 million square meters of exhibition area for the next six months. The pavilion is open to the public from May 1 to Oct. 31 at the Expo site, 10 miles northwest of Milan's city center.
Holy See Pavilion Press Office/cns

Performers and others process into the center ring of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus for an April 14 Mass at George Mason University's Patriot Center in Fairfax, Virginia.
Bob Roller/cns

Stage for death-defying feats, and religion

FAIRFAX, Va. — Brazilian trapeze artist Estefani Evans flies through the air above the center ring, mesmerizing the gasping spectators below. The 25-year-old performer for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus soared to different heights in that same center ring at the Patriot Center in Fairfax when she received the Catholic sacrament of confirmation in a special Mass held for her, her colleagues and their children. Because she travels with "The Greatest Show on Earth" throughout the year and performs most weekends, Evans doesn't have a lot of opportunities to go to church and becoming a regular parishioner is not a practical option for her. Yet, her Catholic faith is as important to her as the act she has fashioned for the circus. U.S. Catholic officials recognized this quandary circus people struggle with and have made efforts to supply them with spiritual and sacramental nourishment. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops deploy pastoral workers through its Circus and Traveling Shows Ministry to help meet the religious needs of Catholics and people of other faiths who travel with the 50-plus circuses and 300-plus carnivals in the United States.

Archbishop Oscar Romero

Wonder for Romero's relics

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador — The chapel of Divine Providence Hospital in El Salvador is one of the most visited places by local and foreign pilgrims. They come wishing to learn more about Archbishop Oscar Romero, the controversial archbishop who has become a Salvadoran icon. In 1966, the Congregation of the Carmelite Missionary Sisters of St. Therese built this hospital under the leadership of Sister Luz Isabel Cuevas Santana, a Mexican missionary who saw the need to care for cancer patients. It was in the small chapel of the hospital that on March 24, 1980, Archbishop Romero was killed, shot near his heart, just as he prepared to consecrate the host. The day before, the archbishop challenged army soldiers for killing their own brothers and sisters. Afterward, some said the bishop was advised to go into hiding, but he refused. He believed he had not done anything wrong by asking the soldiers not to kill, and he was already committed to celebrate a memorial Mass at the hospital's chapel for the mother of one of his friends. When Archbishop Romero was shot, the vestments he wore were bathed in blood. After the attack, the Carmelite nuns kept them with the greatest possible care. For a while, the sisters hid his belongings for fear that the murderers would return to eliminate any form of evidence. "Some of the sisters who were there at the moment of his death rushed out and washed their habits because they were stained with blood," said Sister Maria Julia Garcia, Carmelite superior and director of the hospital. "They feared for their lives since they had been witnesses of the crime. From then on, things have never been the same at this small dwelling place."

Prayers for peace

BALTIMORE — Prayer provides the strength and patience needed to love neighbors and will help Baltimoreans as they addresses the injustices that led to a night of rioting and looting, Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore said. "Given my occupation, I think it's important to start every occasion this way," Archbishop Lori said. The calls for prayer followed hours of rioting and looting the night of April 27-28 that rocked West Baltimore in response to the death of Freddie Gray, who died April 19, a week after he was seriously injured while in police custody.

Actress reflects

DUBUQUE, Iowa — Kate Mulgrew discovered she had a talent for performance early in life when she read a poem to her class at Resurrection Elementary School in Dubuque. Her brother Sam, speaking recently at a book signing event at the Julien Hotel in late April in Dubuque, revealed to a crowd of several hundred fans that his sister recited a poem with such intense feeling, it made her teacher, a religious sister, cry. "She wasn't the only Mulgrew to make the nuns at Resurrection cry," Sam Mulgrew joked. His sister, probably best known for her television roles on "Star Trek: Voyager" and the Netflix series "Orange is the New Black" returned to her hometown as part of a tour for the new memoir she has written. In the book, "Born with Teeth," Mulgrew details life growing up as one of eight children in an Irish Catholic family in a home on Langworthy Street.

Priest indicted

SAN JOSE — Msgr. Hien Minh Nguyen, a priest from the San Jose Diocese, was indicted on federal fraud and tax evasion charges for allegedly diverting thousands of dollars from parishioner donations into his own bank account during a three-year period. The priest, former director of the Vietnamese Catholic Center for the Diocese of San Jose, was indicted by a federal grand jury in San Jose on bank fraud and tax evasion charges He was charged with 14 counts of bank fraud totaling $19,000 and for not reporting hundreds of thousands of dollars in income between 2008 and 2011. In a statement, San Jose Bishop Patrick J. McGrath said the diocese has been cooperating with federal investigators since October 2012. The priest has been on a leave of absence since December 2013. He was arrested April 18.

Interested volunteers?

PHILADELPHIA — For the past year, the question most often heard by Donna Crilley Farrell, executive director of the World Meeting of Families, was "How can I help?" Now there is an answer and a way anyone can lend a hand to the four-day conference and events surrounding the visit of Pope Francis to Philadelphia in September. Registration for volunteers is now open at the World Meeting of Families 2015 website: www.worldmeeting2015.org. The meeting runs Sept. 22-25 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia.

— Catholic News Service


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