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March 5, 1993     The Message
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March 5, 1993

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4 The Message Monthly -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana March -- Perspective-- A reflection: What's in a name? The office was closed but the phone was ringing. Heavy snow kept almost everybody from work at the Catholic Center. The building was officially closed, but I had come in to work anyway to pre- pare for this week's Message. The same snow that made travel treacherous and uninviting must have made the telephone a much more attractive alternative. The phones were busier than Highway 41 when Whirlpool gets out -- if you know what I mean. At times I tried to ignore the ringing telephone. A few times I did. Most of the time, though, I would begin to wonder if the call might be for me. Try as I might to ignore it, I usually gave in to my hope- ful curiosity. "Catholic Diocese of Evansville," I said, in the customary way we answer the phone here at the Catholic Center. Most of the calls were not for me -- that came as no surprise. Perhaps it should have been a surprise that some of the calls I answered were in fact far the Message. The biggest -- and the nicest -- surprise of all, however, was repeated several times. The By PAUL R. LEINGANG EDITOR -i phone would ring, I would say, "Catholic Diocese of Evansville." And the person on the other end of the line would say, "Hello, Paul." Recognition is nice. It feels good. I was at the post office one day last week, when a man spoke my name and said, "Hello." I knew who he was and where he worked but I couldn't come up quickly enough with his name in response. Even though I felt bad about my slowness, I felt good about the recognition in such a chance meeting -- and I promised myself I will remember more quickly the next time. Being able to call some one by name is a powerful thing. To know a person's name is to have some hold on that person. To allow a person to know your name is to allow another person into your life -- even if it is only at the end of a telephone line. We Christians have always made a big deal about names -- even going so far as to refer to our surnames and our Christian names. Even before the Christian era, names were extremely important. Our resident Scripture scholar, Father Donad Dilger, once c in one of his columns about how Jesus could trace his heritage from the line of David though it'involved his foster-father, Joseph. one who named the baby was the father, he If I understand the creation account in the Hebrew scriptures, God gave humans over the earth. They got to pick the names of the animals. : Our diocesan church is now in the of making plans for the next several years ---" synodal planning process, we have named It would be wonderful if each n diocese would feel such a part of the process that he or she would feel called by name. That's the intention of the planning that each person is welcome to have the local church, to exert some authority to be identified together as the "Catholic of Evansville." A diocesan mission statement has been adopted. The first line should get a hard look and some deep reflection. It says, "We are Church." When we call ourselves church, we be prepared to use the hold we claim on it. Washington Letter Brady Bill reconsidered: Of Clinton, (,ongress and the By LAURIE HANSEN Union message he told mem- more people seem to be con- criminals from getting guns national waiting peri Catholic News Service WASHINGTON (CNS) -- When Father PeterDaly won postcard lottery giving him the chance to shake hands with President Clinton at an inaugural reception, he brought up a matter of deep personal concern. He spoke about the vio- lence plaguing the nation and the availability of guns. "I told the president I had buried five people killed by gunshot, and that we need gun control. I said: "I hope you can do something about the violence in our city and across the country.' President Clinton said he hoped he could," reported the priest. Father Daly, currently a campus minister at The Catholic University of Amer- ica, told Catholic News Ser- vice he buried the five while working at two Washington parishes. The new president may have taken the brief exchange to heart. In his Feb. 17 State of the The MESSAGE 4200 N. Kentucky Ave. Evansville, IN 47720-0169 Weekly newspaper of the Diocese of Evansville Pub week/y exert/ast week/n December by the Catholic Press of Evansville ========================= Address all cmmunCatins t P'O" Box 4169, Evansville, IN 47724-0169 Subscription rate: $12.00 per year Single Copy Price: $.50 Entered as 2nd class matter at the post office in Evansville, IN 47701. Public.a. tion number 843800. Postmaster: Return POD forms 3579 tO Office of Publation C. 1983  Pres of E,ta/svle i bers of Congress that if they would pass the Brady bill legislation to require a na- tionwide waiting period for handgun purchases -- he would sign it: . Tim bill: :named for former White House press secretary James Brady, who was seri- ously wounded in an attack on President Reagan in 1981, died in the Senate last year in a partisan crossfire over anti- crime legislation to which it had been tied. Both gun control advocates and proponents think this year may be different. Even Jim Baker, chief lob- byist for the National Rifle Association, a powerful op- ponent of gun control, said the measure was likely to be approved this year. "Americans across the country, from Maine to Cali- fornia, are frustrated and frightened by the continued high levels of drug- related crime and violence in our na- tion," said Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell, D- Maine, in backing the bill. Few would disagree, and cluding that access to guns is a major part of the problem. In 1987, guns in the hands of U.S. civilians were used to murder 3,187 young men be- tweeu the ages of 15 eaxd 24, accounting for three-fourths of the annual homicide rate of 21.9 per 100,000 people. Meanwhile, in nations where gun controls exist, homicide statistics tell a dif- ferent story. In 1987 in Canada, only 17 young men were murdered with firearms, for an overall rate of 2.9 per 100,000. And in Japan that year, with 0.5 homicides per 100,000, gun- shot homicides totaled eight -- as many as New York City police officers face on a sin- gle busy weekend. The Brady bill would estab- lish a national waiting period of five business days before a handgun could be sold, dur- ing which time law enforce- ment agencies could check applicants for criminal records or mental problems. The National Rifle Associa- tion and others opposing the bill say it would not stop Expressing appreciation To the editor: she could to help. We will The faculty and staff of Christ the King School are saddened by the resignation of Sister Mary Emma Jochum [as diocesan director of reli- gious education]. She has done so much for us as teach- ers and has been a good friend. Beyond planning work- shops and retreats, Sister Mary Emma has given us in- spiration, moral support, and good advice. She has really sorely miss her good advice and counsel. The Catholic Center will not be the same without her. Sincerely, Patty O'Neill, Susan Jones, Phyllis Rector, Patty Dewey, Regina Sandage, Jennifer Greubel, Helene Hunter, Amy Daunhauer, Dawn Nichols, Peggy Shurtz, Melanie Colaveccia, Kathy Schapker, Peggy Vogt, listened to our problems and Beverly Lacy, Willie Speer, and would only 'hinder law- abiding citizens who want to protect themselves. In Virginia, a state known to be a leading supplier of handguns for drug dealers and other criminals on the East Coast, the general assem- bly Feb. 25 approved and sent to Gov. L. Douglas Wilder legislation that would limit handgun purchases to one a month per person. On the other hand, the New Jersey state assembly voted Feb. 25 to override Gov. Jim Florio's veto of a bill that would weaken the state's 1990 ban on semiautomatic weapons. New Jersey's ban is considered the nation's toughest. The override mea- sure now goes to the state Senate. Father Daly told CNS that gun control is a church issue "because it's a life issue." The U.S. bishops appear to agree, in recent years having sup- ported legislation to ban as- sault guns and to establish a Bishop's The following activities and events are listed schedule of Bishop Gerald A. Gettelfinger buying handguns. :': Father Daly powerful NRA tion's failure to sales. He contends the lobby says it r sportsmen, "it sents gun m dealers and drug The priest recalls signatures in su control as a school student in lg! lowing the then-Sen. Robert F. "We collected natures and took Everett Dirksen's he wouldn't see us. signatures had been on any other issue would have spe with us," said Dirksen was a Rep senator from Illinois 69. "But the NRA had him $50,000 in contributions. The these guys are sold by the NRA," he: