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January 17, 1997     The Message
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January 17, 1997

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The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana St. Meinrad A recent photo shows the two levels of the Archabbey Church, and the placement of the altar, changes made in the late 1960s. Continued from page 1 that is another valued Benedic- tine tradition. People who are not part of the monastic com- munity will be invited to join the monks in worship and prayer,. "not just watch us pray," said Father Stasiak. The new single-level arrange- ment will also allow for move- ment and flexibility, and for the participation of the elderly and the infirm. The Romanesque style of the building will bd preserved, while heating, ventilation and air con- ditioning will be updated. Light- ing and sound systems will be improved, while the excellent acoustical properties are main- tained. The members of the monastic community met 20 times to dis- cuss renovation plans. Along the way, the monastic chapter cast 10 votes for significant renova- tion elements. The complicated task of achieving community approval for the various stages of the project was described by Father Stasiak in a single sen- tence: "Our main goal was to reflect the views of 140 monks, in age from 23 to 95, who wor- ship five times a day in this Church." "Preserving a sacred space" is the primary objective of the ren- ovation, along with "Enhancing the celebration of liturgy at Saint Meinrad for monks, students and guests alike," and "Praising God by renewing his holy temple." The "sacred space" is described as "the very heart of St. Meinrad, the place where the very mean- ing of monastic life is experienced and expressed. The church build- ing, with its twin spires, is also the center of St. Meinrad and the focal point for the entire commu- nity. It is a local landmark. Colors chosen for the interior will be white, bright white and a kind of golden brown, according to Father Stasiak, Six colors of marble will be worked into the new floor-- white, gold and black from Ital); red from India, green from Hungary and blue from Brazil. The renovation costs, estimat- ed at $4.5 to $4.8 million, have been funded through gifts and pledges from friends, alumni, corporations and foundations. Of the total, $1 million came from bequests to monks from family and friends. The architectural firm of Woolen, Molzan and Partners of Indianapolis is overseeing the plans. Krempp Lumber Compa- ny of Jasper is the general con- tractor. St. Meinrad is the third largest Benedictine monastery in the United States and the sixth largest in the world. The Arch- abbey's primary works are edu- cating the future leaders of the Church and society in its gradu- ate-level Schobl 5fThd015gy and its undergraduate College for Catholic men. Another major work of the archabbey is provid- ing religious and inspirational products through Abbey Press. St. Meinrad Archabbey was founded in 1854 by the Benedic- tine Abbey of Maria Einsiedeln in Switzerland. The abbot of Ein- IF siedeln is dedication along with the, Indianapolis. hundre ry becoming St. g l A construction worker digs a trench near  and a new block wall, in what will be the under the floor of the Archabbey Church. Bishop Higi recognizes state legislators, calls them to love their cate[s] [for] the poor and disen- franchised, to remove moral blindness, to work for social jus- tice," said Higi. During his closing remarks, Bishop Higi thanked the mem- bers of the Indiana General Assembly and their staffs on behalf of his brother Bishops, the entire ICC Board and the people of the five Catholic dioce- ses in the Hoosier state for their dedication to public service and pledged to them the prayers of the state's Catholic community. "Yours is not an easy task, but a noble one," said Bishop Higi. "Pursue it with purity of heart. Ask God to enlighten you in your vocation, a call which empowers you to make a 'profound' impact on the lives of others. We pray Health care services for the entire family, conveniently close to home. mBCOUNTY IIIIIIHOSPITAL 1314 Grand Avenue Washington, Indiana 47501 (s12) 2s4-276o that the Mass Bodiker Tinkle, Michael By BRIGID CURTIS Indiana Catholic Conference INDIANAPOLIS -- In spite of the cold, snowy weather, Indi- ana Catholic Conference (ICC) board member, Bishop William L. Higi of Lafayette warmed the hearts of Catholic legislators and staff dflring a mass held Jan. 9, at St. John's to honor them for their public service to Hoosiers throughout the state. The bishop began his homily with the familiar words, "Praised be Jesus Christ," the response from mass participants, "Now and forever." He went on to say, "We [as Catholics] play an impor- tant role. That role is to shape public policy from a moral per- spective  a perspective forged in the Roman Catholic tradition." Bishop Higi posed three ques- tions to legislators that he had recently heard at an interreli- gious leadership conference: "Preaching Politics, and Power: Exploring the link Between the Pulpit and Ballot Box? The three questions were: II BUILDING SAVINGS BANK, FSB 200 E. Van Trees St., Washington 500 Main St., Petersburg j i: IH ii iii ii ii i i I |1 iii D'O'W.N.T.O.W.N 301 MAIN ST. VINCENNES, IN 47591 1) To what extent is there ten- sion between religious faith on the one hand and American pol- itics, culture and values on the other? 2) To what extent is there mis- understanding, or even dis- agreement between those who believe that we best express our faith by transforming our world through politics and those who believe that politics is the prob- lem? 3) How do we infuse politics with religious values or (the other side of that coin) how do we forge public policy without surrendering religious convic- tion? "These are not new questions," said Bishop Higi. "Answers are not easy." The bishop suggested that the scripture texts heard during the mass provided a con- text for integrating the questions and the many issues facing elect- ed officials and the society at large. Quoting from 1 John 4 the bishop said, "'We, for our part, love God, because He first loved I I | Ed. L. Lee Mortuary us. Whoever loves God must also love his brother and sister." The bishop suggested that [as Christians] we must be rooted in this scripture. "Our call as believers in Christ is to recognize God's love. To recognize it in legislative halls and workplaces, in homes and residential communities wherever GOd calls us. Our faith compels us to recognize God's love. How do we do that? "We fulfill our call (our com- mission) to recognize God's love when the words of Jesus become our words. 'He has sent me to bring glad tidings to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives, recovery of sight to the blind and release to prisoners, to announce the year of favor from the Lord.' "God challenges all of us to open our hearts to the poor, and [the] outcast in society, and to sensitively respond to the needs of contemporary society. This is why our religion chal- lenges us to be counter-cultural. It isn't popular to [be] advo- 101 North Meridian Street Washington, IN 254-3612 i MUENSTERMAN'S FIRESTONE SERVICE, INC. 1400 W. 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