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Evansville, Indiana
February 21, 1997     The Message
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February 21, 1997

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MESSAGE 26 years of serving Catholics of southwestern Indiana VOLUME 27 NUMBER 24 February 21, 1997 I Father Kaiser celebrates 90th Catechumens, k C?ndtdates B W UAIq m 7  i: ' i(( ?  umens, candidates approaching 'big table' i=,.. II r00Qun picture following the Rite of Election at Nativity Church, s, candidates, the pastor and the RCIA director from St. They are, from left, front row, Jim Perkins, Julie Spencer row, Father Gordon Mann, Kelly Driskell, Mike Spurlock, Bill Waninger. By PAUL R. LEINGANG Message editor Bishop Gerald A. Gettelfinger used a family experience tQ describe the kind of longing he saw in the catechumens and can-il didates gathered Feb. 16 for the Rite of Election. ' As children at a large family dinner yearn for the they can sit at "the big table," so do the catechumens dates long to join the Catholic community at worship around tha - big table" m the altar. As the catechumens and candidates prepare for full initiation into the church on Holy Saturday, they remain at "the little table" -- the pulpit from which the Word of God is proclaimed. On Holy Saturday, the with the candidates, they ,will be confirmed, and then community "at the big table" for the Eucharist. Bishop Gettelfinger presided at the Rite Peter Church, Montgomery, and At each location, the cateeJaumens from each duced to the bishop and to the assembly, from their sponsors, and the catechumens were publicly welcomed and "among the elect." Candidates were also introduced, and follow- ing similar assurances, they were also welcomed by the assembly.. During the ceremony, Bishop Gettelfinger signed the "Book of the Elect" presented by each of the parishes. Participants are listed on page 10. hosts legislative breakfast, spells out issues 'NELSON Diane Bender, an Evansville SSage ;"- The Indi- (ICC) which bishops lay board each of ive lawmakers and led the Gerald Wayne; and with the attended the As celebrating rsary this the moral ofsec- con- Net- action, it policy people, or attorney, who represents her dio- cese on the ICC board, explained three main issues the leadership of the ICC has asked its net- workers and staff to emphasize during the 1997 session. Bender said, "First, we ask you to be especially protective of our most vulnerable citizens our brothers and sisters whose existence is threatened at the beginning and end of life." "We seek your support of a ban of partial-birth abortion," she said. This is an abortion pro- cedure that is more akin to infanticide than abortion and is never medically necessary. There is broad support for this ban among your constituents, and we are hopeful that Governor Frank O'Bannon will sign this bill into law when it reaches his desk. "We also seek your support of proper care for patients in hos- pice programs. Our hope is for these patients to be afforded the opportunity to receive compas- sionate care at home with their families. "Second, we affirm the empha- sis Gov. O'Bannon has placed on a quality education for all Hoosier children," Bender said. "We urge you to extend this con- of the diocese about reporting aisconduet? fdicesan policy is found on page 5. cern to children attending all accredited schools in Indiana." She said that the ICC's recent position paper, "A Tradition of Concern for All," gives strong support to public schools, but stresses that all schools must meet the educational needs and that curricula should incorporate values guiding human conduct. "Third," Bender said, "we urge you to be considerate of the societal and economic pressures that undermine the family especially those families that need temporary assistance as they work their way off welfare toward becoming economically independent." She told the legislators, Catholic pronouncements consistently call for public and private efforts to promote the well-being of all, especially the poor." She noted that the "Catechism of the Catholic Church" states that the duty of becoming neighbors "becomes even more urgent when it involves the disadvantaged in whatever area this may be." "As you work to reform wel- fare in Indiana," said Bender, "we pray that your efforts will assist able people to move from Diane Bender, Evansville attorney and ICC boardmember, gives the keynote address to state lawmakers during the 1997 ICC Legislative Breakfast. -- Photo courtesy Charles J Schisla welfare to work in a manner that does not make it more difficult for poor families to live with dig- nit)'; that does not leave children without the help they need to grow into productive citizens; and that does not force a woman to choose between her unborn child and greater poverty. Bender thanked the legisla- tors for their personal commit- ment to public service and offered prayer and support of their efforts. Brigid Curtis, ICC Director of Communication, contributed to this drticle.