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June 12, 1998     The Message
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June 12, 1998

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. 1998 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana 11 The index of forbidden books By FATHER JOHN DIETZEN Catholic News Service a convert to the Catholic faiih and to The Index of Forbidden Books. Is there such a list today? It was never instruction classes. (Indiana) Index of Forbidden Books was a tholics were not allowed to read feared they could in one way or anoth- to faith. created in the 16th century and after that. den books dealt with theology, r and science. They also included, novels of the Dumas brothers, for Balzac and other classical authors, most or Italian. list was always somewhat uneven. In spite of authorities have had with Charles Darwin did not make the list, though one obscure book of his grandfather, Erasmus Darwin, did. The final edition of The Index was published in 1948. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith discontinued it permanently in i966. Question: We have baptisms at Sunday Masses in our parish. I have heard all sorts of weird names being given, especially to girls. Must a child still be named after a saint? When I was growing up 30 years ago, at least the middle name had to be a saint's name. Isn't that still true? (New Jersey) Answer: Having a Christian saint's name is still commendable and appropriate. But, strange as it may be to some older Catholics, it is not absolutely required. Previous church law said that a Christian name (of a saint, or the name of some Christian virtue like faith or hope) should be given at baptism. Today the rule simply says that parents, godpar- ents and pastors are to see that a name foreign to a Christian mentality is not given (Canon law 855). While neutral names (of movie stars or other public persons) are permissible, however, names of past Christian saints and apostles are still highly commendable. Giving the names of famous and saintly Christian men and women, apostles and martyrs, was formerly considered a great asset to a child. It gave him or her a hero, an ideal to aim at, someone to consider a model in life. The only forbidden names would be those chosen because they are deliberately and obviously an insult to Christian belief. Perhaps the rule for adult converts puts it in good perspective also. The Christian name chosen by a catechumen should be "one in use in that part of the world, so long as it has a Christian meaning" (see Rite for the Christian Initiation of Adults 203, 205), A free brochure an,ering questions Catholics ask about Mary, the mother Jesus, is available by sending a stamped, self-addressed envelope to Father John Dietzen, Box 325, Peoria, Ill. 61651. Questions for this column should be sent to Father Dietzen at the same address. urged to defend families, help laity with roles The bishops were making their "ad limina" visits to Rome, required every five years by the heads of dioceses. One of the most important ways lay Catholics witness to their faith, the pope said, is through their family life. "At a time when the very def- initions of marriage and family are endangered bv attempts to enshrine in legislation.alterna- CITY (CNS) -- must continue to traditional family lay people find their role in the Paul II said. 6 with bishops North Dakota Dakota, the pope Catholics in the r family rela- their church life. tive and distorted notions of these basic communities, your ministry must include the clear proclamation of the truth of God's original design," the pope told the bishops. On an international, national, state and local level, Catholic Church officials have opposed efforts to grant legal recognition ---equal or parallel to the status of marriage -- to homosexual. couples and other couples liv- ing together without marriage. Families built on the relation- ship of a man and a woman, married for life and open to having children are good not only for indMduals and for the church, the pope said, but they benefit society as well. They foster "the sense of com- munity and solidarity" which promote a "civilization of life and love," he said. Pope John Paul encouraged bishops to continue their out- reach to hurting and broken families, but said the church must pay more attention to the healthy families that are the backbone of parish and dioce- san life. In this year marking the 30th anniversary of Pope Paul Vls encyclical "ttumanae Vitae" (r On Human Lite'.), bishops should also ensure that church teaching about human sexuality and again,t artificial contraception are pre- sented "in the light of the the- ological development which has followed that document and in the light of the experi- ence of couples who have faithfully followed this teach- ing." The experience of couples who have discovered increaseci tenderness, communication and respect for each other through using natural family planning "deserves to be shared, for it is the living confirmation of the truth which 'Humanae Vitae' teaches," the pope said. "In contrast, there is a grow- ing awareness of the serious harm caused to marital relation- ships by recourse to artificial ine.'i giving implied in the conjugal act, at one and the same time destroys its procreative meaning and weakens its unitive signifi- cance," he id. In his remarks about lay Catholics' role in the church, the pope said their primary concern must be to spread the Gospel in the world through their families, communities and workplaces. (Bradley) Fleming of Boonville will cele- wedding anniversary with a Mass of Thanks- 20 at St. Clement Church, Boonville. A dance will follow in the church social hall. The no gifts. They were married June 19,1948, at St. are the parents of five children: and Vicki Labhart, both of Newburgh, Judi Onville, and Kay Fleming of Indianapolis. Their is deceased. They have eight grand- children. Mr. Fleming is a farmer;, a riurse, Worthmentioning Anniversaries at St. Meinrad On May 31, the Benedictine Community at St. Meinrad Archabbev celebrated the jubilee of priesthood ordination of four monks. Celebrating his sixtieth jubilee was Benedic- tine Father Frederick Walsh. Benedictine Fathers Harold Hammerstein, Simeon Daly and Rupert Ostdick celebrated their fiftieth jubilee of ordination. Father Frederick was ordained to the priesthood on June 7, 1938. He taught Latin in the seminary for many years and served as abbey guest master and assistant house prefect. In 1956, he received permission to live the solitary life as a hermit, first at St. Leo Abbey in Florida, and later in Ferdinand. In 1970, he took up duties as chaplain to a group of contemplative sisters whose journey took them from Durham, N.C., to LabadieviUe, La., and finally to Our Lady Queen Monastery in "lickfaw, La., where he still resides. Father Harold was born in Evansville. He was ordained on July 10, 1948. A teacher of physical education in the former Minor Seminary at St. Meinrad for many years, he al) rvL as chaplain at the federal peni- tentiary in Terre Haute. Since 1978, he has been residing in Evans- ville, and assisting at St. Bem.Ktict Church. Father Simeon was oMained on May 18, 1948. He taught religion and liturgy at St. Mein- rad, and served as assistant librarian for two years. In 1951, he was appointed head librari- an, a position he still holds. From 1975 to 1978, he was subprior. Father Rupert was ordained on May 18, 1948. He has served as assistant treasurer, treasur- er, assistant spiritual director, spiritual director and master of novices and instructor of clerics. In 19"9, he was appointed general manager of Abbey Press. He was subprior from 1986 to 1996. Summer Social information is on the Web This year's Summer Social at St. John the Baptist Church, Newburgh, will include a celebri, auction and a truck raffle. Items from the celebrity auction may be viewed on the parish website, The website also includes mfomtion about activitit and events fcr the upcoming luly 9 - 11 social. The current website features information about Mass hedules, parish events, wtM- dings, funerals and meetingr.