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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
July 4, 1997     The Message
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July 4, 1997
 

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4 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana July 4, --Taking the time to make a difference m Giving away some good stuff It's one of the hardest things to The scene reminded me of the be an ordinary effort. Not just something that haP" do, for me -- to get rid of something useful. And for me, just about every- thing is useful. If, on some extremely rare occa- sion, I find an item which has no value, I am confident that some day it may be so. I don't know the origin of the term, "goods" -- as in "dry goods" or "goods and services" -- but I am firmly committed to the underlying principle which must account for such a term. The items that I collect and keep, no matter how much they may resemble junk, are in fact "goods." Our parish has a kind of rummage sale at its summer social, and we contributed some items. I say "we," but I really can't claim any credit for the donation. My wife is a much more generous person than I am. When the organizers of the sale came to our house to pick up the items, I helped carry them out -- but I talked about our stuff all the way to the truck. That typewriter is really heavy, I told them. It was very well made. It still works. All the keys are good. That desk is made of real wood. No cardboard. All wood and plywood. It's a good desk. Solid. Except for two of the legs. By PAUL R. LEINGANG EDITOR time 10 years ago when we moved to our current home. I had to get rid of a lot of the stuff that I had collected there. It may have been good stuff, but it was not good enough to carry along. That moving time -- and the disposal of my good stuff back then had seemed to me at the time to be like the Lent to end all Lents. Stuff-- for which I felt a strong attraction and affection -- had to be pried from my grasp. These items were not strange gods, but very familiar and well-loved ones, that I had begun to worship. It's not supposed to be Lent now, I thought, as I looked at the truck taking my stuff away. It is sup- posed to be ordinary time. * * * What things are important in your life? In the lives of your family and friends? In the lives of your children? If you could keep only 10 things, what would they be? If you have children, ask them about their most favorite things. Or ask your friends and neighbors. * * * One conclusion I have drawn from this most recent experience is that detachment from the things of this world, as good as they may be, should pens during Lent. There's another way to look at this picture from another's point of view. Over the years I have noticed that other people don't need food only at. Thanksgiving and Christmas, or clothing only wllen it is cold. Sharing the goods of the earth is a daily task. Another conclusion I have drawn is that we are all on a journey toward a new life somewhere. It is easier to travel without trying to carry along so much stuff. * * * Take the time today to give something good away. Help a child to give something to another child who has less. Read Matthew, chapters five and six, and note particularly the admonition to store up things in heaven and not on earth. Organize a garage sale for your neigllborh-'--  to give the proceeds to the needy. Volunteer your time and talent to repair itovas collected by the local St. Vincent de Paul Sot!sty, or similar service. share Work with your church or congregation to the goods of the earth with those who have less. Prepare yourself for the journey. Comments about this column are prleing@cfm.org or the Christian Family I P.O. Box 272, Ames, Iowa 50010. Washington Letter Title I ruling: Opening doors as well as classroo By PATRICIA ZAPOR Catholic News Service WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Lawyers will have lots of compa- ny in sorting out implications of the Supreme Court's June 23 rul- ing that allows tax-paid teachers in a remedial program to work on site at religious schools. For one thing, supporters of voucher programs to provide state funds that may be used for tuition at parochial schools hope Justice Sandra Day O'Connor lel them a legal door open in the wording of her majority opinion. "We have departed from the rule.., that all government aid that directly aids the education- al function of religious schools is invalid," O'Connor wrote in Agos- tini vs. Felton. Early reaction to the ruling by advocates of voucher programs suggests that section and others in the 5-4 opinion are likely to be tested as openings for further links between state and religious The MESSAGE 4200 N. Kentucky Ave. Evansville, IN 47711 of the Diocese of Evansville  wdy except /ast week/n December by the Catholic Press of Evansville Ed ...................................... PR.LavQz PWJon Tr* .............. Joee Dc ................................... P Nand S W ............................ M  H Address aft communications to P.O. Box 4160, Evansville, IN 47724-0160 Subscription rate: $17.50 per year Se Copy Price: $.50 F.m m imbdl mf,* N i oe in Etmldlb. IN 47701. Pubk:l rllXflbet 843800. Pmmr. RaUn PO0 fm 3b t00 0f C0m lge7 Cah P,m d Emdb I fl II ] I education. More immediately though, school administrators, teachers and parents are looking at how to take advantage of Title I reme- dial courses for the first time; where to put teachers for the pro- gram now that they no longer are consigned to buildings off cam- pus; and how to comply with new regulations about keeping the role of Title I teachers entirely secular while they're on duty at religious schools. Even some of the tiniest stu- dents at St. Barnabus Catholic School in Philadelphia -- who can't yet wrap their mouths around a four-syllable word like Constitution -- will learn what it's like to be on the winning side of a constitutional debate. The 145 children there who receive remedial reading and math help through the federal Title I program will know some- thing has changed when they don't have to head separate building to go special classes. Their principal, Heart of Mary an Angelilli, told Service she will classroom to See Death penalty opponent: 'Whatever became of forgiven To the editor:, ument entitled, "Confronting a do" (Lk 23:34). Isn't it ironic that Christ and paul's Driving down the Lloyd Culture of Violence.') the only person ever promised a dichotomy! In Expressway recently, I saw a bumper sticker which read, "Why do we kill people for killing people to teach that killing peo- ple is wrong." It does seems that our American answer to just about any problem is "kill 'em." Pope John Paul II was correct when he referred to the perva- sive moral sickness throughout the world called the "culture of death." If someone is pregnant with a baby that she doesnt par- ticularly want, abort it. If some- one has a child that they did not plan on, put it in a dumpster. If someone has a relative which is causing too much misery or cost- ing too much time and money, euthanize her. If someone is tired of being depressed or sick, help him commit suicide. If someone has a neighbor who is playing his mtisic too loud, shoot him. If someone is guilty of mur- der, kill him. Nevertheless, The U.S. bishops wrote, "Increasing- ly our society looks to violent measures to deal with some of our most difficult social prob- lems :.. including increased reliance upon the death penalty to deal with crime .... Violence is not the solution; it is the most clear sign of our failures .... We cannot teach that killing is wrong by killing." (Prom a doe- Vengeance or justice? Many proponents of the death penalty desire revenge. Listening to them spew venom and grind their teeth on camera is ugly. Worse are the good Christians who sit in judgment and demand death to their enemies. Whatever became of forgive- ness? In the story of the first murder, when Cain killed his very own brother Abel, the Lord did not seek to put Cain to death. Cain feared for his life, not from the Lord, but from other men who would kill him at sight. The Lord even went so far tosay that if a human being were to put Cain to death, then Cain would be blessed sevenfold. Consider what Jesus said: "Blessed are you.., for when I was in prison you visited and comforted me... for whatsoever you do to the least of these, that you did unto me" (Mt 25:31-46). He did NOT say, execute the pris- oner. Or recall his words, "Let he among you who has no sin cast the first stone" (Jn 8:7). Or who can recall, "love your enemies.. if you do not forgive others, nei- ther will your heavenly Father forgive your transgressions" (Mt 5,6,7). And hanging from the cro he prayed, "Father, forgive them. They know not what they paradise was a criminal dying the death of execution? A man sentenced to death who inherited the kingdom, despite the death sentence? Saint Paul continued this theme when he wrote to the Church in Rome, "Rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, perse- vere in prayer.... Bless those who persecute, bless and do not curse them... Do not repay any- one evil for evil.., do not look for revenge ... for it is written, engeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.' Rather if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink .... Do not be conquered by evil, but conquer evil with good" (Rom 12:12, 14, 17, 19-21). Well, it. appears that the Church of Rome has heard Protestant adherents wet critical of the and its with all Christians their stand for life, even the was to these Hopefully, words will Christians senses the Lord has nG released, , No," serve his or her J tics. But must of death? In means are Bishop's sche The following activities and events are listed on of Bishop Gerald A. Gettelfinger: these