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September 16, 1994     The Message
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September 16, 1994

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I II IIIII IIIII I I II II I 00koM E'S SAGE i i i i ii ii i i ii i i ii I Inclusive : / Language i By PAUL R. LEINGANG Message editor WEST DEANERY EAST DEANERY II II II I ! II I I I I I i i ii ii ii iii ,i i i I i i i j i HH Diocesan leaders attend presentation on Catechism The same Gospel reading is proclaimed on Sunday at every Catholic Church in the world, but the homily is different. That is how Father John Pol- lard explained the use of the Iiew Catechism of the Catholic Church. The same Catechism is used all over the world, but how it is applied depends on the culture and tradition of each locale, he said. Father Pollard is the U.S. ishops' representative, who as traveled to more than 50 dioceses to make presentations on the Catechism and how to Put it into use. He spoke to parish, diocesan and catecheti- cal leaders at St John Church, Daylight, on Sept 10 He was the keynote speaker at two Workshops, at St. John Church, Loogootee, and at Holy Redeemer Church, Evansville. Bishop Gerald A. Gettelfin- ger, in opening remarks made at Daylight, said the distribu- tion of the new Catechism m the diocese was not the focus the culmination of the cate- mission of the Church. Was a beginning, "an occa- for us to proclaim our D the long term." uring his presentations at he three locations, and in sessions at each of FATHER JOHN POLLARD is, how it came to be, how it is to be used, and what are its limitations. The reason for the Cate- chism and for all catechetical work, he said, was expressed in a quotation from the 400- year old Roman Catechism, which was included in the new Catechism: "The whole concern of doc- trine and its teaching must be directed to the love that never ends. Whether something is proposed for belief, for hope or for action, the love of our Lord must always be made accessi- ble, so that anyone can see that all the work of perfect Christian virtue spring from love and have no other objec- tive than to arrive at love." Father Pollard said the Cat- echism is a reference work, the kind of book a person would use to look up information on a specific Church teaching. It is "an authoritative refer- every question." The new Catechism is called a "major catechism." It is meant as a reference work, not as a text to teach directly. The Baltimore Catechism is a "minor catechism," he said; it was meant to be used directly in teaching Catholic faith and morals. The new Catechism is the first of its kind since the Roman Catechism, which was produced following the Council of Trent in the sixteenth cen- tury. The new Catechism provides a compendium of Catholic teaching on belief, sacraments, morals and prayer life. It does not provide teachers with classroom materials. Such ma- terials have to be developed to fit the needs of students. explained what Father the Catechism Pollard : : : :::::. ::::::: : .:: ; : : .... enee, but not the answer to P00ddefl bv Vatican U N. conference struggles with abortion issue Y JOHN THAIS face new Egypt, went on to dis- Abortion quickly moved to more than a dozen countries Catholic News Service agreements over the definition center stage of the Sept. 5-13 that backed reform of the text. "We didn't want to come here and make abortion the center of the conference,  said Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls. But because it was not dealt with adequately by drafters of the "Program of Action," the abortion issue ex- ploded, he said. After a full week of wran- gling, the result was a para- graph whose first line read: "In no case should abortion be pro- moted as a method of family planning." That effectively re- stored language adopted at a similar conference in Mexico in 1984. The Vatican had lobbied hard to reinstate the phrase, against the opposition of many Western delegations. Archbishop Renato R. Mar- tino, head of the Vatican dele- gation, called it a "great vic- tory." But enthusiasm was tempered because the same paragraph stated that "in cir- cumstances in which abortion is not against the law, abortion shoed be safe." 3, Egypt (CNS) -- a persistent Vatican egation, the Internationa nference .... 1 ,,n t'opulation and eVelopment spent a week with the issue of and its relation to de- ic policies over the Vatican claimed a big when participants to formally reject abor- n as a method of family Sept. 9. But it re- eeply disappointed to legal abor- remained in the text of the of Action." to the U.N.-spon- conference in Cairo, of the family, the term "repro- ductive health" and a proposed right of migrants to reunite with their families. On another crucial issue, the Vatican criticized the confer- ence's plans for future funding, saying most of the money will go toward population control and relatively little to develop- ment. The verbal battles overshad- owed the fact that 90 percent of the "Program of Action" has drawn widespread support including the Vatican's -- for its promotion of women's health, improved education, re- duction of child and maternal mortality, and greater interna- tional economic balance. conference in opening-day speeches by two women. Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brunt- land of Norway called for a general legalization of abor- tion, saying the alternative was suffering for women. But Pakistani Prime Minis- ter Benazir Bhutto, reflecting Muslim sentiments, said the draft document tries to "im- pose adultery, sex education ... and abortion" on all countries. "The Holy book (Koran) tells us, 'Kill not your children on a plea of want. We provide suste- nance,V' she said. According to one delegate, Marilyn Pryor of New Zealand, Mrs. Bhutto's remarks "swung the conference on the first day. It was a very good speech and it reflected the mainstream po- sition." The Vatican, however, was often portrayed as the lone conference holdout to consen- sus on the abortion language. Vatican officials dismissed this as propaganda and pointed to Father Pollard noted that the Catechism continues to sell at an unprecedented rate. He said that some 3 million copies had been purchased in the United States. In the Diocese of Evansville, an anonymous donor has made it possible to provide copies of the Catechism, at no cost, for catechetical leaders. v!