1996 Nov 24 – Christ the King (Bulletin Letters)
All Parish Meeting Monday Nov. 25th
This Monday’s Parish Council meeting has been preempted by a call for an All Parish meeting regarding the diocesan Parish Development Task Force. A volunteer from the task force is meeting with us to have a conversation and learn more about our parish’s outreach to the community. All members of the parish are invited to attend. Task force volunteers are interviewing parishioners in all of the 80 parish communities in our diocese.
The task force release its first progress report last month which called on parishes to emphasize its mission of providing for the needs of families and neighborhoods. The document did not specifically address the issues of “parish viability” or priest assignments, but envisioned that guidelines will be created in those areas during the next year.
Parish Advent Retreat I urge you all to to attend this retreat!
This year’s parish Advent Retreat will take place Saturday Dec. 14th at St. Mary’s in Lacona. The Retreat begins at 10:00 a.m. and will last until 5:00 p.m. This years retreat masters are Sr. Susan Widdel and Sr. Bechy Burrows. Both sisters are on the Pastoral Team at Christ the King parish in Des Moines. Sr. Susan is
the Pastoral Associate and Sr. Becky is the Director of Religious Education and Youth Minister.
Sr. Susan and Sr. Becky have many years of experience in parish ministry. They bring to us a wealth of first hand knowledge of serving God in their religious vocations and God’s people in their chosen ministries. Both have much to share with us on our Retreat.
Advent is the forgotten season in our Church year. Only four weeks long, it’s theme of expectation and prayerful waiting is often lost in the hectic days leading up to Christmas.
It is ironic to me, that the very demands on our time, energies and resources that the commercial Christmas season places on us are the very things that keep us from doing the spiritual work needed to get into the Advent Spirit.
So don’t miss this opportunity to step out of your hectic and busy lives to spend a few hours paying attention to the spiritual side of the season!
A lunch will be serve in the Church basement. Please sign up on the list in the back of the Church if you are coming. We would like to have a sense of how many people to prepare to feed.
An free will offering will be taken to cover expenses.
96 11 24
This past weekend’s National Call To Action (CTA) conference in Detroit was a real spirit lifter for me.
I stayed at the Catholic Worker in Detroit. Fr. Tom Lumpkim picked me up at the air port. Fr. Tom is a Detroit diocese priest who’s been assign to the Detroit Catholic Worker for the last 18 years.
They have a large inner city home one block north of Tiger stadium. They do long term hospitality for women and the run a soup kitchen five days a week that feeds four to five hundred people. I got to help with the Friday serving before I went to the conference.
Over five thousand people attended the conference at the Cobo Center in downtown Detroit. There were four Bishops in attendance. Nine percent of the people attending were priest, over twenty five percent were nuns and better than a third worked directly for the Church.
The majority of those in attendance were main line committed Catholic’s who love the Church and want to see it become a better witness to Jesus in the world.
Some of the better known speakers included:
Hans Kung, a world famous Catholic theologian from Germany who lost his Catholic teaching job because of his writings. Kung spoke about the need for a new world ethic upon which all the major religions of the world could agree.
Bishop Jacques Gaillot, the French Bishop Pope John Paul II removed from his diocese because he spoke out publicly for Church reform spoke about his experience of living in solidarity with the poor in France. It was a very moving and inspiring testimony.
Bishop Thomas Gumbelton, the auxiliary bishop of Detroit and leading advocate for church reform within the ranks of U.S. Catholic bishops shared his memories of the original CTA gathering in Detroit in 1976, assessed the current reform movement, and glimpsed into what he hoped our future would be.We are so lucky to have Bishop Gumbleton speaking out within the community of U.S. bishops for reform concerns.
The high point of the conference for me was when John and Jean Krejci were introduced to the whole assembly Friday evening. John and Jean are members of the CTA in Lincoln NE. The Bishop of Lincoln excommunicated them and anyone else in his diocese who belongs to CTA. John and Jean, along with other CTA people in Lincoln are refusing the let the Bishop excommunication stand.
When asked about getting excommunicated, Jean said, “It’s a lot like an unexpected pregnancy. You just deal with it.”
Lincoln CTA host a regional CTA conference in Lincoln May 17 -18 Pentecost Weekend. I hope to attend.
Graphic Women’s Work
There was a counter conference in Detroit put on by conservative Catholics called the “Call to Holiness”. They gave an award to Mother Angelica. In the Nov. 16, 1996 Detroit Free Press article “Dueling Calls” the following appeared.
Most CTA Participants were more amused than angered by Angelica. In contrast to the priests in white collars and black suits hovered around Angelica, the Rev. Frank Cordaro of Lacona Ia., strolled around Cobo in a T-shirt emblazoned with a painting of the Last Supper in which women had replaced all 12 of the men around Jesus.
“I’m a priest in good standing in my diocese, at least so far, and I’m deeply committed to reform in the church. But Mother Angelica doesn’t bother me.” Cordaro said. “This is a big church and she’s one part of it, but she ain’t the whole tamale.”