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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
January 12, 1996     The Message
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January 12, 1996

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The Message m for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana 3 garden. forms raw slabs of wood using an art He recently held his second public vided b form called pyrography or woodburning. He works five days a week in his shop, Archabbey. Before Brother Flavian completes the design, sketching and woodburning process of each work of art, he adds one more process: color. He decorates each piece using oil colored pencils, This added feature enhances the burnings phase involves the finish- )a spray booth room, where pieces receive a deep wood satin fmish. His designs feature a wide variety of motifs, including wedding, religious and wildlife themes and many of his pieces have been commissioned to com- memorate special occasions. Brother Flavian has been working with this art form for over five years. Benedictine Brother Flavian Schwenk transforms wood using an art form called pyrography or woodburning. ..... . -- Message photos by Mike Woolsey helps students deal with peer pressure, prepare for high school Evansville, noWflake '96 for and eighth February 3 end retreat is lducted by a students Mater Dei, R. Y adult in- stages. were anning, and expected "There are always several adults present during the weekend in addition to the speakers, but the youth staff is the driving force," Amodio said. The retreat consists of a se- ries of speakers and workshops on a wide range of topics in- cluding Peer Pressure, Sub- stance Abuse, Self-Esteem, and Success in High School. Some of the workshops will be pre- sented by the high school stu- dents who helped plan the weekend. This is the third year for St. Benedict to sponsor the retreat weekend for students in the Evansville area. Most of the participants come from 15 local parochial schools, Amodio said, pointing out that students from public schools are also ac- cepted. At the retreat, seventh and eighth grade participants are divided into small groups called families to discuss the presentations they have heard as well as other topics impor- tant to that group, Amodio said. "By the end of the weekend it is hoped that the partici- pants will have learned enough to make informed lifestyle de- cisions," Amodio said. "We also give them the opportunity to meet high school students who have chosen chemically-free lifestyles.  The weekend is not all lec- ture and discussion, however, Amodio said. Three meals and snacks are served, and Satur- day night is reserved for a dance for both the middle and high school students. The weekend concludes with Mass Sunday morning. The high school students who planned the weekend are group leaders, speakers, chap- erones, and clean up crews. Pre-weekend efforts included planning and ordering meals, soliciting donations and grants, selecting and contact- ing speakers, and handling other planning tasks. ing parish gives $400,000 to Catholic schools Ify. (CNS)_ grieved and When Arch- Ls C. Kelly of the clos- es in Novem- parishes close or fact that aln open as closing the news en. or nearby a Parish of olds in a in Father Parish ft. ed to funds educa- of ity ) School School, ic schools Part of Jeffer- he gift ar- ow! We hit the lottery,'" said Sister of Charity of Nazareth Barbara Von Bokern, Community Catholic principal. She told The Record, Louisville archdiocesan newspaper, that she hoped the school's board would set the fund aside for tu- ition assistance, which she con- siders the school's greatest need. "What I find probably most touching is that in their hour of greatest loss, they felt it right to let us benefit," said Terry Crawley, Holy Cross principal. She said she also hopes to use the endowment for student tuition assistance. Churches of three of the closed parishes are to become oratories, maintained by the archdiocese or a neighboring parish. Those churches will be available for some special events such as funerals or wed- dings and possibly for Sunday Mass, but the people will be asked to join a neighboring parish. Archbishop Kelly originally announced preliminary plans in September to close 11 parishes and merge six into three, but he set up a two- month consultation period be- fore any decisions would be made final. The consultations concluded with hearings in 17 churches in late October, 14 of them at- tended personally by Arch- bishop Kelly. He said the voices of parish- ioners at several of the hear- ings revealed "a vitality of mis- sion that we did not know about until we got there. That's why the parish hearings were so important" to the deci- sion process. Of the 11 parishes originally slated to close, he decided to close seven, effective June 17. He also formalized the clos- ing of St. Mary Magdalen in Louisville as a parish, keeping the church open as an oratory. It had not been included in the earlier draft plan, but Arch- bishop Kelly said that was be- cause it had already operating as an oratory for some time. Its registered membership was down to 18 households. Four other parishes  St. Ignatius, St. Luke and St. Matthias in Louisville and St. Patrick in West Point  per- suaded archdiocesan officials that they should remain open because they offer a unique presence to their neighborhood or community that should not be lost. Of three originally planned mergers, each pairing two parishes, two were reconfirmed after the consultation. A third pair proposed for merger was Incarnation and St. Polycarp in Louisville. They convinced officials that a merger could pose a conflict of priorities. St. Polycarp has a strong commitment to its parish school while Incarnation, which has never had a school, gives high priority to its sports-athletic program for youth. Instead of strengthen- ing those programs, a merger could put them at risk, parish- ioners said. The archdiocese has offered the parishes affected by clo- sure or merger, including sur- rounding parishes expected to receive new parishioners, sev- eral kinds of transitional assis- tance. It has trained facilitators to help people form support groups and to lead workshops on change and grief. It has also developed liturgical materials to help parishes plan closing liturgies. Catholic Charities is offering parishes assistance in respond- ing to the needs of the elderly who are affected'by the changes, and the archdiocesan evangelization office is advis- ing neighboring parishes on ways to reach out to those from closed parishes. Contributing to this story were Joseph Duerr, Roy Homer and John R. Karman HI. Teacher of the Year nomination forms available The Message and the Office of Catholic Education are co- sponsoring the ninth annual Diocese of Evansville Teacher of the Year award. Bishop Ger- ald A. Gettelfinger will an- nounce the 1996 Teacher of the Year on May 1. The deadline for nomina- tions is February 8. To obtain a nomination form, contact the Message at (812) 424-5536.