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Fridge Notes are generally posted by noon Central Standard Time on Mondays.
International SCJ conference opens in Brazil
Fr. Zbigniew Morawiec (US), Fr. David Szatkowski (US) and Fr. Gustave Lulendo (Canada) are representing North America at “Anthropologia Cordis,” an international seminar focusing on the anthropology of Dehonian (SCJ) spirituality. The week-long gathering got underway last night (February 2) with an opening Mass and dinner in Taubaté (approximately two hours from Sao Paolo).
In his opening homily Fr. John van den Hengel, vicar general, said that “You [the young SCJs gathered] represent the future… On you the congregation counts to be the bearers of the tradition and legacy of Fr. Dehon. We need your voices to take the congregation into this post-modern world.”
Writing from Taubaté Fr. David reflected on this morning’s first presentation. “It was by Fr. Colzani, an Italian priest, who focused on the question (crisis) of anthropology in today’s world. He pointed out that many of the starting points of the human person that existed in the past – particularly starting points in Christianity – are no longer automatically accepted, even in cultures that are traditionally Christian (Europe, North America)…
“Part of what causes the lack of universal principles is that we are now in a ‘post colonial’ world. Cultures that are not European, rightly independent, are now putting forth their own ideas and anthropology. No longer is it an automatic presumption that European and North American values are automatically superior…
“Part of what Christianity offers to the world is the belief that God has entered into dialogue with humanity in the person of Christ, and this relationship of God to humanity allows us to be rooted and grounded in a relationship of love with God and other people.”
Fr. David’s full reflection, as well as photos and other information from the conference, will be posted on the province website.
Fifty-three SCJs from five continents are present at the conference, which concludes on February 7.
Grant money goes a long way in rural South Dakota
Congratulations to the Lower Brule Pastoral Team for receiving a $1,500 grant from OCP (Oregon Catholic Press), a worship resource publisher.
The pastoral team ministers to six parishes: three on each side of the Missouri River, half in the Diocese of Rapid City and half in the Diocese of Sioux Falls. While $1,500 isn’t quite in the “windfall” category of finance, the pastoral team has found ways to stretch the money so that the grant will benefit all six parishes.
“We plan to use the funds to purchase an extra guitar; the ones we have are aging or borrowed,” said Fr. Joseph Dean, moderator of the rural pastoral team that also includes Frs. Vincent Suparman and Christanus Hendrick. “On the West River side we plan to purchase missalettes for all three parishes [so that all have the same kind]. This will make liturgical preparation easier. In addition, we plan to purchase a projector.”
Fr. Joe added that the team will also “order booklets to enable people to better participate in baptismal liturgies, which have been more frequent.”
Rebuilding lives with the help of a little soap
In 2007, Fr. Johnny Klingler was a member of the Benedict Center’s Board of Directors and a frequent tutor, helping clients at the Milwaukee-based social service center study for their high school equivalency certifications.
Mary McCauley was one of those women. Although he lost touch with many of his students, Fr. Johnny continues to stay in contact with Mary. Near the end of the year, the two of them met for lunch. It was then that he learned about “Gifts for the Journey,” a business venture where the bottom line focuses on helping women to rebuild their lives.
Gifts for the Journey is a non-profit social enterprise run by women with a history of abuse, prostitution and/or addiction. The women make and sell specialty soaps and other bath products
Mary told Fr. Johnny that she was working with the newly developing organization.
“Would you like to buy some soap?” she asked him.
He said that he would, but that he also knew of a lot of other people who might like her products. Just before Christmas he set up a display in the dining room at Sacred Heart at Monastery Lake and sold over $600 worth of goods.
If you didn’t get to make a purchase then, you can still do so online at www.giftsforthejourney.com.
A sales tip from Fr. Johnny: “Type the word ‘Mary’ in the online promotion code box at the checkout and receive a 5% discount on the order.”
“Mary,” of course, is Fr. Johnny’s former student.
Click here to read the full article on the province website.
One of St. Joseph’s first students dies
One of the last three original students from when St. Joseph’s Indian School opened in 1927, Orville Webb, died January 28. He was 97 years old.
Orville was recently honored as a St. Joseph’s Distinguished Alumni. His son, Bud, represented his dad due to Orville’s health. Orville’s wife, Irene, died just weeks earlier on January 7.
In relating the news to Mary Jane Alexander at St. Joseph’s, Bud mentioned that his father’s final wish was to be with Irene.
SHST faculty member part of Milwaukee Synod prep
Fr. Javier Bustos’ article entitled “Catholic Social Teaching” has been posted on the Archdiocese of Milwaukee’s website as one of the background preparation papers for the archdiocese’s Synod on June 8. 2014. Click here to read the article.
Fr. Bustos is Vice President of External Affairs, Director of Recruitment, and an assistant professor of systematic studies at Sacred Heart School of Theology.
Posts from India
Fr. Tom Cassidy continues to post reflections on the province blog from India, where he is spending the next month with the theology community in Eluru.
“Yesterday Fr. Jojoppa invited me to accompany him and three theologians to celebrate the 9:30 am. Mass in our parish of the Sacred Heart,” Fr. Tom wrote this morning. “We would first pick up four Dominican Sisters who help with the music. Their convent is located in Eluru not too far from the bishop’s residence, which was pointed out to me as we drove to the convent…
“Our parish (Sacred Heart) is normally about a half hour drive from the theologate. Our detour to Eluru did add a few minutes to the drive. In addition to the main church it has three sub-stations. The stations average around 40 families each while the parish church has about 190 families. Shades of the American South before segregation were evident –– there are two substations in the same village as they are two different caste.”
Click here to read the rest of this, and other posts from Fr. Tom on the province blog site.
World Day of Prayer for Consecrated Life
Yesterday, on the Feast of the Presentation, the Church also celebrated World Day of Prayer for Consecrated Life. In 1997, Pope John Paul II instituted the day of prayer for women and men in consecrated (religious) life, linking it with the Feast of the Presentation.
In commemoration of the day of prayer Br. Ray Kozuch and Br. Long Nguyen from Vocation Central gave the Sunday reflection at St. Bruno’s Parish in Milwaukee.
Click here to read Pope Francis’ homily for the Feast of the Presentation in which he also addresses consecrated life.
Click here to read about the 2015 Year of Consecrated Life.
And click here to read a reflection that Fr. Jim Schroeder prepared for the Feast of the Presentation.
Fr. Stephen Huffstetter meets with the Provincial Council February 4-5.