March 1994 v.p. What’s Happening p. 2
By Frank Cordaro
It is with sadness that I must begin by informing readers of the recent kidnapping and brutal murders of Clara Baker and Phyllis King, two elderly neighbors of the DMCW. They lived only two doors north of Dingman House and this crime has been a real shock in the whole community. We offer our condolences and prayers to the families of these two women and we pray for those who committed this awful act. The murders of Clara and Phyllis have prompted renewed calls for the death penalty in Iowa. In this issue of Via Pacis, we are reprinting an opinion piece opposing the death penalty in Iowa written by Ed Fallon. Ed and his family live next door to Ligutti House. He plays guitar at our Friday night Masses and is our State Representative.
This issue of Via Pacis features also features the May 29 simultaneous peace witnesses at StratCom (Strategic Command Headquarters, Bellevue, NE) and EUCOM (US armed forces headquarters for Europe, the Mediterranean and the Near East, located in Stuttgart, Germany). There are also updates on the Pax Christi Spirit of Life Plowshares and Fr. Carl Kabat.
We report on the recent visit from Karl Meyer and his Peace House. Barry Malloy, longtime friend and supporter of the DMCW, shares some thoughts on the Palestinian/Israeli peace prospects.
We have our regular features, Carla’s Community News article and Norman’s Whereabouts. In addition, Ed Bloomer gives us a short reflection on his experience of a Native American Sweat he attended while visiting the Council Bluffs area.
Be sure to mark Friday night, October 14th on your calendars! Veteran Pittsburgh Catholic Worker and Nonviolent Resister, Vince Eirene is making a speaking tour of the Midwest this Fall and he will be with us for a presentation following Mass on Friday, October 14th. The title of his talk is, “The Unfinished Work of Peace – To Ban the Bomb”. Vince has visited the DMCW before and we’ll be glad to have him back. He is a very colorful and animated Italian American.
Waiting For the Other Shoe to Drop:
There is still no word from the Omaha Federal District Attorney’s office to answer charges of breaking my standing “Ban & Bar” letter from Offutt AFB on May 29th. The last time I was indicted it took three months to pass my name on to the Omaha Federal District Attorney’s office.
When Bill Farmer and Mark Kenney, the last people indicted for breaking “Ban & Bar” letters at Offutt, were indicted, it took Offutt six months to get their names to the District Attorney’s office. Justice (sic) does move slowly in this country. I fully expect to be called to court eventually to answer charges of breaking past “Ban & Bar” letters from Offutt. Stay tuned, we will keep you posted.
Iowa Call to Action:
The first Fall Conference of the Iowa Call To Action is scheduled for Friday and Saturday, September 9th and 10th at Christ the King Church in Des Moines. Call to Action is a movement within the Roman Catholic Church. Among the changes the members of this group advocate are:
An end to mandatory celibacy for the priesthood and an opening up of all leadership and decision-making bodies (including the priesthood) to all people, including women and married people.
They are calling for a more open process in the selection of Bishops with the local church having more say in who gets appointed to lead their diocese.
They want more lay involvement in developing the Church’s teaching on human sexuality.
They are for a more democratic spirit within the whole Church, maintaining that the people most affected by Church decisions should have the most say in such decisions.
Fr. Philip Kaufman, OSB, will be the Conference’s keynote speaker on Friday night, September 9th. Fr. Kaufman us the author of the book , Why You Can Disagree and Remain a Faithful Catholic. Due to the Conference, there will be no Friday night Mass at the DMCW.
If you are interested in attending the Conference or getting in on the Iowa Call To Action mailing list, drop me a line at St. Patrick’s Church, 223 Harmony Street, Council Bluffs, IA 51503.