(Editor’s Note: The Online Angelus will not publish Monday but will return Tuesday, Feb. 13. Dates and readings included in this post cover Monday, Feb. 14)
This Weekend in the Diocese
Friday — SAN ANGELO, Diocesan Pastoral Center – Presbtyeral Council meeting 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Friday — SAN ANGELO — Sacred heart Cathedral, 1:00 to 4:30 p.m. Workshop on Marriage for Priests by Father Robert Ruhnke, C.SS.R.
Saturday — SAN ANGELO, Holy Angels– Scout Awards Mass at 5:00 p.m.
Sunday — Bishop Pfeifer in Austin, Texas Conference of Churches
Friday, Feb. 9 — Rev. Albert Fuytinck, C.SS.R. (1997)
Saturday, Feb. 10 — Rev. Leo Lavoie (1978)
This Weekend’s Readings
First Reading: Genesis 3:1-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 32:1-2, 5, 6, 7
Gospel: Mark 7:31-37
First Reading: Genesis 3:9-24
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 90:2, 3-4, 5-6, 12-13
Gospel: Mark 8:1-10
First Reading: Jeremiah 17:5-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 1:1-2, 3, 4, 6
Second Reading: First Corinthians 15:12, 16-20
Gospel: Luke 6:17, 20-26
First Reading: Genesis 4:1-15, 25
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 50:1, 8, 16-17, 20-21
Gospel: Mark 8:11-13
Headlines from Catholic News Service
Pax Christi urges ‘complete reversal’ of U.S. Iraq policy
WASHINGTON (CNS) — Pax Christi USA has been gathering signatures for an advertisement that will call for “a complete reversal of U.S. policy” in Iraq, including a withdrawal of U.S. troops. “The U.S. is not the honest broker who can craft peace among the Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds. Our continued military presence is counterproductive,” says the ad, which Pax Christi plans to run in the March 16 issue of the National Catholic Reporter. “Four years after launching an illegal and immoral war, it is time to bring the U.S. occupation of Iraq to an end,” the ad says. Pax Christi USA is the U.S. branch of an international Catholic peace movement committed to nonviolence as a means of conflict resolution. “For all who would believe that violence can serve any productive purpose, the tragic experience in Iraq should be ample evidence to the contrary,” the ad says.
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Nun is anti-hunger lobby’s liaison to orders of men, women religious
WASHINGTON (CNS) — Globally, about one of every six people is Catholic. In the United States, the figure is a little less than one of every four people. Among U.S. Christians, the number is closer to one of every three people. Bread for the World, the Christian citizens’ anti-hunger lobby, beats those percentages: One out of every two members is Catholic in the 56,000-member group. “It’s one way of their expressing some sort of solidarity in reaching out to those who are poor and hungry,” theorized Franciscan Sister Margaret Mary Kimmins. “They do it in a lot of ways as you well know, but it (Bread for the World) was one of the first organizations that was out there to do that.” Another connection for Catholics, she said, might be the association that now-retired Auxiliary Bishop Thomas J. Gumbleton of Detroit had with Bread for the World. For the group’s first 10 years — it was founded in 1974 — he was the vice president and then president of its board of directors. Sister Margaret Mary, who for six years was director of social justice for the Diocese of Scranton, Pa., was hired by Bread for the World late last year under a fellowship it created to reach out specifically to Catholic women’s and men’s religious orders.
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Iowa soldier who was killed in Iraq is remembered as ‘gentle giant’
GUTTENBERG, Iowa (CNS) — “A gentle giant” is the way friends and neighbors described U.S. Army Reserve Spc. Stephen D. Shannon of Guttenberg, who died in Iraq Jan. 31 from injuries he sustained when his unit came under hostile fire. “He had a large physique with a gentleness and compassion to match,” commented high school teacher and soccer coach Bruce Bryant. Parents Dan and Joan Shannon, members of St. Mary Parish, were advised a few days earlier that their son had been wounded, but on Jan. 31 were notified that he had died. Father Marvin Bries, pastor of St. Mary, said a private Mass Feb. 4 at the Shannons’ home, where the family shared Scripture, prayer and family memories. “I’m sure this death will impact our community for a long time to come,” Father Bries told The Witness, newspaper of the Dubuque Archdiocese. “Yes, the war in Iraq has come home to us here in Guttenberg.” As a sophomore at the University of Northern Iowa, Shannon joined the Army Reserve’s 397th Engineer Battalion out of Wausau, Wis., and was deployed to Iraq last September. The military said its mission was clearing roadside bombs.
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Catholic agencies ask rich countries to prove they will increase aid
VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Two international Catholic organizations have asked the world’s richest countries to prove they are serious about the promise to increase development aid and halve world poverty by 2015. Caritas Internationalis, the Vatican-based umbrella organization for national Catholic charities, and the International Cooperation for Development and Solidarity, or CIDSE, an alliance of 15 Catholic development organizations from Europe and North America, launched their campaign Feb. 8 at the Vatican. The campaign, “Make Aid Work: The World Can’t Wait,” is aimed at reminding the world’s richest nations that they made concrete commitments and that the citizens who voted for their governments expect them to act, said Duncan MacLaren, secretary general of Caritas. The campaign consists of sending postcards to government leaders before the June G-8 summit meeting of the leaders of the world’s eight richest nations and having cardinals and bishops meet government officials before the summit to remind the politicians of their commitments.
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Pope says lay movements can help bishops care for their own souls
VATICAN CITY (CNS) — A bishop can turn to Catholic lay movements not only when he needs an organized group to implement his pastoral plans, but also when he needs to care for his own soul, Pope Benedict XVI said. When a movement gathers its “bishop-friends” together, it helps them experience “a more intense communion of hearts, a stronger mutual support and a greater shared commitment to showing that the church is a place of prayer and charity, a house of mercy and peace,” the pope said. Pope Benedict spoke Feb. 8 at a joint audience for 80 bishops participating in a conference sponsored by the Focolare movement and 110 bishops attending a meeting organized by the Community of Sant’Egidio. Pope Benedict said the variety of lay movements responds to the variety of needs and blessings found among the world’s peoples. “In the rich Western world where, even though a culture of relativism exists, at the same time there is a widespread desire for spirituality, and your movements witness to the joy of the faith and the beauty of being Christian,” he said.
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Australian priest seeks American ship’s crest to honor WWII battle
SYDNEY, Australia (CNS) — An Australian parish priest has been looking for the crest of an American destroyer to display in a church honoring the friendship between Americans and Australians. Father Paul Hilder of Regina Coeli Memorial Church in the Sydney suburb of Beverly Hills would like to add the crest of the USS Patterson to the church’s memorabilia commemorating the ship, which saved 627 Australians of the HMAS Canberra during a World War II battle. The church’s founder and first pastor, Father William Evans, was one of those saved during the Battle of Savo Island off the Solomon Islands in August 1942. However, Father Hilder said he has been unable to make contact with any crew members of the ship, which was decommissioned in 1945 and later was sold for scrap. “I think it would be fitting to honor the ship and its crew by having its crest on the wall of the chapel,” Father Hilder said. “I’m sure Father Evans would like to have seen it displayed in his beautiful church.”
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Files show Polish nuns generally withstood secret police pressure
WARSAW, Poland (CNS) — Polish nuns withstood pressure from communist secret police better than male clergy, according to research by the country’s women religious orders. Nuns who researched Interior Ministry files found that no more than 30 people associated with women religious had been recruited by secret police during the 1980s, when collaborators were most active, said Mother Jolanta Olech, a member of the Ursuline Sisters of the Sacred Heart of the Agonized Jesus and president of Poland’s Conference of Superiors of Female Religious Orders. “Even the 30 informers we know about could include laypeople who worked in convents, as well as priests who came as chaplains and are noted as agents,” Mother Jolanta told Catholic News Service in early February. The communist secret police “tried to catch anyone of importance: superiors, catechists, sisters working for church institutions, even nuns from closed orders who seldom left their convents,” Mother Jolanta told Catholic News Service. “But they didn’t succeed.
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Reality show star urges teens spend less time on TV, more on issues
FORT WORTH, Texas (CNS) — Tarek Saab became an instant celebrity after appearing on NBC’s “The Apprentice,” one of the most highly rated and critiqued shows on network television. He spent 10 weeks on the reality show last year before hearing the words “you’re fired” from the program’s executive producer and host, Donald Trump. While the 27-year-old lost a chance to work for the high-profile financier, he gained valuable insight into the power of fame and its impact on society. He feels the culture “is totally, undeniably addicted to entertainment.” He urges young people to spend less time on entertainment and more on the world around them. “It’s no mystery that those in the entertainment world have a strong voice with youth. I’m trying to do something positive with the voice that’s been given to me,” he told the North Texas Catholic, newspaper of the Diocese of Fort Worth. A Maronite Catholic and daily communicant, Saab uses his business acumen and new visibility to advance pro-life causes across the country.
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Two Catholics to run in historic election for Hong Kong executive
HONG KONG (CNS) — A Catholic legislator is running for the post of Hong Kong’s chief executive against the incumbent, also a Catholic, making it the first contested election for the office since Hong Kong reverted from British to Chinese control in 1997. Civic Party legislator Alan Leong Kah-kit, 48, will run against the current chief executive, Donald Tsang Yam-kuen, 62, in the March 25 election. Both candidates are alumni of Jesuit-run high schools in Hong Kong, reported UCA News, an Asian Catholic news agency. According to the Basic Law, the miniconstitution of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the chief executive is elected by the 796-member Election Committee, but must be appointed by the central government in Beijing, and only candidates who receive at least 100 nominations from the committee can stand for election. Candidates for this election may be nominated officially Feb. 14-March 1. Pro-democracy advocates, including Leong, criticize the chief executive’s selection by the Election Committee as a “small-circle election,” since most Hong Kong residents are unable to participate in the process.
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Rhode Island Catholic paper gets new general manager/editor
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (CNS) — Bishop Thomas J. Tobin of Providence has named Marcia Grann O’Brien to the newly created position of general manager/editor of the weekly diocesan newspaper, The Providence Visitor, and its companion monthly Spanish publication, The Providence Visitor en Espanol. Father Stanley T. Nakowicz, the former executive editor, retired from that post in December. Michael K. Brown, advertising director and editor of the paper since 1991, is leaving in mid-February. O’Brien, who will start Feb. 23, will be responsible for the daily operations of the newspaper and will participate in its restructuring and in a redesign process that has already begun. Bishop Tobin, who is publisher of the Visitor, has decided to make a number of changes as a result of recommendations by consultants from the Catholic Press Association. These include more local news, less national news, a new look for the paper and a change in name. The new publication will be introduced later this year.