Dec 1980 v.p. What’s Happening p. 3
Cordaro, VP, Vol. 4, No. 6, December 1980, What’s Happening
By Frank Cordaro
We have been blessed with many visitors. I can only take the space to mention but a few. Dave McRenolds, the presidential candidate for the Socialist Party, Peggy France from Kansas City, MO in town for an AFSC meeting, Fr. Bernard Survil and two high school students from his parish in Managua, Nicaragua to talk to classes at DHS, Sr. Maureen Fielder from the Quixote Center in Washington, DC. She was back in town to back the Iowa ERA. (Though the amendment lost, Sr. Fielder was instrumental in getting Bishop Dingman to publicly endorse the cause. Good job Sr. Fielder. Thank you Bishop!). John Wilson spent a couple nights with us while going to the Social Workers Conference. John is an old friend from Aquinas Institute. John Judge from CCCO stayed with us while he gave the Draft Workshop in Des Moines. Todd Warnbrandt stopped by on his way to sing at the State C/L EC meeting. Tom Gervais spent a few days with us during his winter break from his communities’ self sufficient farming effort in Wisconsin. Fellow CW types that stopped to spend a day or two were Dave and Kathleen from the Anderson CW on their way west, Gary Donatelli from the NYC CW touring the Midwest. For the record, Gary came to Des Moines first and only went to Davenport after we gave him directions. Speaking of the beloved sister house, a whole pack of folks from the Quad Cities came to visit for one weekend under the pretense of having to be at a wedding. The good souls that graced our door that weekend were Sally Schleppman, Jo Was, Jim & Mary “with child” Runion, Steve Quilty, and last but not least, George Dean. Come again, good people! From the Kansas City, KA CW to spend a few days were Dana and Sheila & Aarond Rodenbaugh and Sr. Henrietta Kocher on their way to visit other CWs in the area. And we have had several visits from the folks at ‘Love and Fishes’ Hospitality House in Ames since they opened this fall. I know there are other folks that I have missed, please excuse. For all those mentioned and those I forgot, thank you for coming and come again!
A number of us took off for different places during the past two months. We sent two carloads to Columbia MO for a prayerful witness at their Nuclear Missile Silo. The gathering was sponsored by the local FOR group. We also took the CW slideshow to Anita IA and Iowa Falls IA along with showing it to the CCD classes from Ankeny IA and the 8th grade at Sacred Heart School. I took a four-day trip to Cedar Falls IA to spend time with my old friend Fr. Jack Kissling and checking in on Rusty Martin. Rusty is doing well living at the Catholic Student Center while going to school and actively working on Peace Issues on campus. While at UNI, I got to talk to eight different groups about the CW movement and our efforts in Disarmament. Fr. Jack also allowed me to give the homily at the 4 p.m. Sunday Mass on Christ the King Sunday–the perfect day for a Christian anarchist to preach. Norman took a week off around Thanksgiving to go to Appalachia with a group of folks from Iowa State University to help out poor folks there.
Registration and Draft:
The Task Force Against Conscription held a state-wide anti-draft rally October 18th which drew over 100 people. It was in connecting with the National Anti-Draft Week sponsored by the Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors (CCCO). Our Steve Anderson was one of the folks who got to sing and say a few words. Recently, the Iowa Peace Network sponsored John Judge from CCCO to give draft workshops all around the state. While in Des Moines, John, a man with a wealth of information and history of the draft, stayed at our house.
January 5th Action:
The Iowa Resisters are planning another public demonstration for those wishing to announce their intention not to register January 5th, the first day 18-year-olds are to start registering. The action will take place in Des Moines at the main post office. The group is hoping to have over 10 people to announce their refusal to register. Each participant is to have a personal statement of intent with at least 10 community people signing their names to the statement as a sign of support. They will then put all the resistors’ statements, with endorsements, in an envelope and send them to the Selective Service Office in Washington DC. Anyone wishing to find out more about the action should contact anyone of the resisters who are staying at the CW.
Richard, John, Brent and myself made the trip to Milwaukee for the National Pax Christi conference. We spent the first night at Tim Brennan’s. Tim is doing well in his new home. He is just as big and gentle as ever. At the conference we touched base with many old friends; Tom Siemer, who visited us last year about the time of the Pope’s visit. Tom is the man who quit his $75,000/year job at Rockwell to work for Peace and Disarmament. We also saw Tom Cornell, who is now working with the Catholic Peace Fellowship in the area of Draft Counseling; and Fr. Dick McSorley SJ, who helps run the CW in Washington DC. Richard and I spent the second night with the folks at Casa Maria CW. Their house has been operating for over 10 years now. At our regional meeting with representatives from IA, NE, MO, an KA, we decided that much of our local efforts will surround our local manifestations of the Pentagon (i.e. SAC, Rock Island Arsenal, Missile Silos in MO and KA, and the different military contractors in the region such as Bendix in KC). We also affirmed Bishop Dingman’s recent Pastoral Letter on the subject of N-Weapons and N-War.
The Justice and Peace Center has ordered 100 copies of “A Race to Nowhere: An Arms Race Primer for Catholics” put out by the National Pax Christi office for $3/copy. Folks can pick up a copy from the Center here or order one from the Pax Christi-USA, 3000 N. Mango Ave., Chicago IL 60634. It is an excellent booklet, with 85 pages, clearly stating the problem with the arms race and nuclear weapons while giving the Catholic Church position on the issue.
We are also happy to announce that Bishop Dingman has recently joined Pax Christi and we are hoping to hear more and more about this International Peace Organization.
We took a carload of folks to Omaha to pray with Bishop Gumbleton at the gate leading into SAC Headquarters on October 2nd. The bishop was in town to talk at Creighton University about Disarmament. What better way to highlight talk than by actively praying. The authorities must be beginning to worry about our ‘little’ movement to expose SAC, because the Air Force sent a PR person to the TV and newspaper people asking them not to cover the bishop’s praying because it would hurt the defense effort. It is a sad state of affairs when the peaceful prayers of a bishop and some 60 of the faithful pose a direct threat to national security.
December 28th ACTION:
The SAC campaign (Strategies and Actions for Conversion; converting the Strategic Air Command Headquarters to peaceful use) is planning another witness in December:
Friday, 26th, 7pm; those considering direct action are to meet at Serpent’s and Doves Community, 613 N. 17th St. Omaha to finalize plans for 28th action.
Saturday, 27th, 9am — 5pm an all day retreat will be held at UNO Religious Education House, 101 N. Happy Hollow Blvd., Omaha.
Saturday, 27th, 7pm, an open house to view SAC slideshow (same day as retreat).
Sunday, 28th, 2pm, Mass at St. Margaret Mary Church, 62nd and Dodge St., Omaha.
Sunday, 28th, 3:30pm, Peace witness and presence at SAC Headquarters, main entrance of HW 73/75.
Anyone interested in participating in all or some of the December 28th activities, please contact us here at the CW or Joyce Glenn in Omaha @ 402-344-0539.
There is a major gathering on the 28th planned at the Pentagon for all the folks who have been involved in the ‘Year of Election Campaign’ organized by our friends at Jonah House. Our brother Peter DeMott, who was recently released from Federal Prison, will be representing us at the Pentagon.
READERS TAKE NOTE! THE RESISTANCE CHURCH IS GROWING AND IS WITH US TODAY! THIS IS NOT A FUTURE MOMENT, IT IS NOW!!