Festival Season

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C.V. Pickett, left, Eloy Rodriguez and Kenneth Dye, of St. Therese Parish in Carlsbad, work to prepare sausage for the combined Fall Festival at Carlsbad’s St. Therese and St. Paschal in Sterling City Sept. 16        Photo courtesy Ginger Bruton/St. Therese

Watch for more festival photos in the October West Texas Angelus, in mailboxes next week.

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Today (10.02.07)

Today in the Diocese 

   Bishop Pfeifer in Odessa, St. Mary’s Confirmation, 6:30 p.m.

Today’s Readings

Exodus 23:20-23
Psalm 91:1-6, 10-11
Matthew 18:1-5, 10

Today’s Briefs from Catholic News Service

Supreme Court rejects appeal of law requiring contraception coverage

WASHINGTON (CNS) — The Supreme Court rejected an appeal by Catholic Charities of Albany, N.Y., Oct. 1, letting stand a state court ruling that said church agencies cannot be exempt from a law requiring coverage for contraceptives in drug benefits for employees. The New York State Catholic Conference, which represents the state’s Catholic bishops in public policy matters, said the bishops will now consider what alternatives have been left to them, “including the painful possibility of a loss of prescription drug benefits in employee health plans.” In the meantime, it said in a statement, “Catholic institutions will continue for the immediate future providing the contraception coverage under formal protest.” The conference’s executive director called it “a sad day for religious liberty” in New York and in the U.S. In orders issued the first day of the 2007-08 term, the court without comment let stand a New York State Court of Appeals ruling that said religious groups may not be exempt from provisions of the Women’s Health and Wellness Act of 2002.

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Bishops mark 100th anniversary of first Byzantine bishop in U.S.

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) — Ukrainian and Latin-rite Catholic bishops from around the world celebrated the 100th anniversary of the arrival of the first Byzantine bishop in the United States, an event coinciding with the first worldwide Eastern Catholic synod in the United States. When Bishop Stephen Soter Ortynsky arrived in America Continue reading

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Today (10.01.07)

Today in the Diocese

   No events in the diocese today

Today’s Readings

Zechariah 8:1-8
Psalm 102:16-21, 29, 22-23
Luke 9:46-50

Today’s Headlines from Catholic News Service
 

U.S.

Church official calls current immigration reform debate inflammatory

WASHINGTON (CNS) — The current tone in the immigration reform debate has “inflamed fears and misunderstanding among some portions of the American public, leading to a polarized and vitriolic atmosphere,” said a U.S. church official. Bishop Gerald R. Barnes of San Bernardino, Calif., chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Migration, noted that while “voices of division and fear are loud” the “truth about immigration and migrants in this country ultimately will prevail.” The bishop, in a Sept. 27 statement issued in Washington, said migrant workers, including the undocumented, make important contributions to the nation’s economy through their work in agriculture, construction and service industries. He faulted the United Stated for refusing “to acknowledge these contributions” and relegating migrants to “a permanent underclass of workers, without full rights.” The failure of the U.S. Senate to pass comprehensive immigration reform legislation this summer has set back, but not ended, attempts to repair the immigration system, according to the bishop.

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Spokane Diocese moves toward bankruptcy end with $5 million payment

SPOKANE, Wash. (CNS) — In what Bishop William S. Skylstad called “just one small step toward healing for the victims,” the Diocese of Spokane was to wire $5 million Oct. 1 to a trust account set up to pay the claims of those sexually abused by clergy in the diocese. The payment to the Plan Trustee Trust Account, as stipulated by Continue reading

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Today (09.26.07)

Today in the Diocese

    Mass, Newman Center, Angelo State University, San Angelo, Noon.

Necrology

   Rev. William Cadigan, MSC (1971)

Today’s Readings

Ezra 9:5-9
Tobit 13:2-4, 7-8
Luke 9:1-6

Today’s Headlines from Catholic News Service 

CARA reports uptick in Catholic college seminarian enrollment figures

WASHINGTON — There is an uptick in the number of Catholic seminarians in undergraduate college programs, according to Mary L. Gautier, a senior research associate at the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, based at Georgetown University in Washington. For the 2006-07 school year, there was a total of 1,365 college seminarians, up from 1,297 the year before, and up from 1,248 — the lowest number reported in CARA’s 40 years of surveying — in 2004-05. The last time the number of college seminarians was this high was in 2002-03, when 1,376 students were enrolled. Still, the numbers have been trending downward over the past four decades. The 2006-07 number of 1,365 college seminarians is barely 10 percent of the number reported by CARA’s first survey in 1967-68: 13,401. The numbers are in the CARA report “Catholic Ministry Formation Enrollments: Statistical Overview for 2006-2007,” which was released Sept. 21.

Judge won’t force city to allow opening of Planned Parenthood clinic

AURORA, Ill. (CNS) — Pro-life groups opposed to the opening of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Aurora welcomed a federal judge’s refusal to order city officials to let the clinic open pending an investigation of how the organization obtained its building permits. Continue reading

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Today (09.25.07)

Today in the Diocese

   Abilene Sacred Heart Confirmation Mass, 6:30 p.m.

   Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, 5 p.m., Christ the King Reatreat Center, San Angelo

Necrology

   Rev. William Lensing (1978)

Today’s Readings

Ezra 6:7-8, 12, 14-20
Psalm 122:1-5
Luke 8:19-21

Today’s Headlines from Catholic News Service

Mid-Atlantic summit looks at securing future of Catholic schools

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (CNS) — Catholic school leaders from the mid-Atlantic region meeting Sept. 19 in College Park were reminded Catholic education is a unique institution that should be preserved for the good of the church, community, country and future generations. If Catholic schools continue to take a piecemeal approach in dealing with dwindling enrollment in the urban and lower-income parish schools, more closings will be inevitable, Washington Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl told educators, clergy and laypeople of the Mid-Atlantic Catholic Schools Consortium at a summit on the future of Catholic schools. “The cost of a Catholic education has to be in the reach of families and if they can’t afford it, their children can’t access it,” Archbishop Wuerl said in the summit’s keynote address. “If (rising tuition) continues, we’ll only see schools continue in affluent areas for people who can afford it. The Annapolis-based consortium invited 160 national experts, benefactors, laity, educators and clergy to formulate methods that will keep Catholic schools in the region academically superior, affordable and accessible, while maintaining their faith-based identity and value system.

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Bishop advocates in Washington for undocumented students, refugees

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Bishop Thomas G. Wenski of Orlando, Fla., advocated on behalf of undocumented students hoping to attend college and people seeking refugee status or asylum in separate appearances Sept. 19 in Washington. In a statement at the National Press Club, Bishop Wenski, chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on International Policy and a consultant to their Committee on Migration, Continue reading

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Today (09.24.07)

Today in the Diocese

   Meeting of Liturgy Commission, Diocesan Pastoral Center, San Angelo, 10 a.m.

Necrology

   (Sunday, Sept. 23) — Rev. Herman Valladeres (1997)

Today’s Readings

Ezra 1:1-6
Psalm 126:1-6
Luke 8:16-18

Today’s Headlines from Catholic News Service

U.S.

Moral obligation to Iraqi people seen for U.S. whenever troops leave

NEW YORK (CNS) — The United States has a moral obligation to the people of Iraq that must be met regardless of when U.S. troops ultimately withdraw from that country. That was the conclusion of the panelists at “Exit or No Exit? Morality and Withdrawal from Iraq,” a New York forum held Sept. 18 and attended by 450 people on the Lincoln Center campus of Jesuit-run Fordham University. “We must distinguish between the ethics of intervention and the ethics of exit,” said Gerard F. Powers, director of policy studies at the Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame and former director of the U.S. bishops’ Office of International Justice and Peace. “The U.S. intervention may have been an optional, immoral war, but the post-intervention U.S. involvement is not an optional moral commitment,” he said. Quoting the U.S. Catholic bishops, Powers said that the U.S. intervention “has brought with it a new set of moral responsibilities to help Iraqis secure and rebuild their country and to address the consequences of war for the region and the world.”

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Top official: U.S. to admit thousands more Iraqi refugees next year

WASHINGTON (CNS) — The United States should have the capacity to admit around 1,000 Iraqi refugees a month next fiscal year — an amount “substantially higher” than this year, said a senior U.S. Department of State official. The United States has “a moral obligation” to protect Iraqi refugees, “particularly those who belong to persecuted religious minorities, as well as those who have worked closely with the United States government,” said Ellen Sauerbrey, Continue reading

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A Look at This Weekend (09.21-23.07)

This Weekend in the Diocese

   Saturday — Blessing of Motorcycle Rally in memory of Cheyenne Fiveash, 8 a.m., San Angelo

   Saturday — Dedication of Knights of Columbus Monument, Abilene

   Junction — Mass to dedicate new church, St. Theresa, Junction, 11:15 a.m.

Today’s Readings

Friday

Ephesians 4:1-7, 11-13
Psalm 19:2-5
Matthew 9:9-13

Saturday

1 Timothy 6:13-16
Psalm 100:1-5
Luke 8:4-15

Sunday

Amos 8:4-7
Psalm 113:1-2, 4-8
1 Timothy 2:1-8
Luke 16:1-13

Today’s Headlines from Catholic News Service

Detroit Archdiocese helps Iraqi refugees build new lives in U.S.

DETROIT (CNS) — Escaping persecution in their home country, many Iraqi refugees are finding a new home in the metro Detroit area with the help of the Archdiocese of Detroit as well as other agencies. The refugees, many of them Chaldean Catholics, started arriving in the metro area earlier this summer, with the archdiocese helping to settle 11 people from six families in July, said Tu Ho, the archdiocesan refugee services coordinator. In August, the archdiocese helped to settle 110 people. In September, the archdiocese helped 100 more. The people who receive assistance through the archdiocese receive money for groceries, household items and hygiene kits, as well as a new mattress. The archdiocese has spent $10,000 on mattresses already, Ho said. For what the archdiocese cannot provide, the family is often referred to the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. “We really need a lot of help from the people in the parishes,” Ho told The Michigan Catholic, Detroit’s archdiocesan newspaper.

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New seminarians ‘prayerful and eager to learn,’ says seminary rector

SEWARD, Neb. (CNS) — The 23 newcomers attending St. Gregory the Great Seminary in Seward this fall are “full of questions, obviously prayerful and eager to learn,” said Father John Folda, seminary rector. “They’re going to be a great group of seminarians, I have no doubt,” he added. Continue reading

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