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September 25, 1987     The Message
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September 25, 1987
 

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0 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana September 25,1987 III I "The secret word is caring' Stephen Ministry program flourishes at St. Joseph, Jasper By MARY T. ELLERT Message Staff Writer You might say that Indiana's best kept secret is at St. Joseph Church, Jasper. What is it? It's the Stephen Ministry program, and St. Joseph is the only Catholic church in Indiana cur- rently involved with it. According to a brochure, the purpose of Stephen Ministry at St. Joseph parish is "to train in- terested lay parishioners for meaningful involvement in ministry to the needs of peo- ple." That's what Stephen Ministry is on paper. In "real life," it's caring -- pure and simple. sisters and a lay person in a church with 5,200 parishioners. Stephen Ministers are not a substitution for priests and religious, however. "We fill in the gaps," explained Curt Gramelspacher, who is begin- ning his third year in the program. The main difference between Stephen Ministry and other outreach programs is its organization and structure. "This is a regimented program. It's got direction," said Sister Jackie. Stephen Ministers at St. Joseph parish who care for the ter. minally ill, divorced, depress- ed, elderly, hospitalized and others in the parish and com- munity who need help. EACH STEPHEN Minister must make a two year committ- The Stephen Ministry pro- ment and complete 50 hours of Stephen Ministry involves gram was established at St. training before being commis- "caregiving -- not curegiv- Joseph because the pastoral sioned into active ministry. ing," according to Dottie team was having difficulty Training includes topics such Vogler, one of the newest meeting the needs of such a as feelings, listening, assert- Stehpen Ministry leaders. "By large parish, according to Sister iveness training, confidenti- caring for people, it frees them Jackie Kissel, coordinator. Cur- ality and crisis theory and in- to solve their own problems, rently, on the pastoral team tervention -- to name just a The secret word is caring." there are two full-time priests, few. There are currently 44 one semi-retired priest, three After commissioning, Pope meets with U.S. bishops By LAURIE HANSEN WASHINGTON (NC) -- Pope John Paul II's meeting with the U.S. bishops Sept. 16 in Los Angeles showed a papal understanding of the "American way," said bishops who attended. Far from being confronta- tional, the pope was "fatherly" and "consoling" and urged the bishops to have compassion for U.S. Catholics struggling with church teachings, a number of bishops said in interviews and statements after the encounter. Bishop Robert E. Mulvee of Wilmington, Del., described the meeting as "one of the warmest, most affirming ex- periences of collegiality" he could recall. Bishop'John F. Donoghue of Charlotte, N.C., said the meeting "dispelled for me the idea that he's not aware of what's happening in this coun- try." "He clearly understands the problems we have, and said that we have to be compas- sionate," said Bishop Donoghue. The pope was "very open to the concerns we have here in America. He kept repeating that he wants to support (the bishops) in every way he can," ccording to Bishop W. Thomas Larkin of St. Petersburg, Fla. "He wasn't there to condemn anything, but he was there to af- firm and support us. And he gave the impression that he really did understand what the difficulties are," said Bishop Larkin. The meeting, said Bishop F. Joseph Gossman of Raleigh, N.C., was the beginning of a process to help Rome under- 3tand "where we are, our struc- ture, and the so-called American way, and to under- stand that being outspoken is not necessarily the same as be- ing rebellious." Archbishop Theodore E. Mc- Carrick of Newark, N.J., said he iheard "no comment at all that vould justify the impression (the pope) had been perceived as stern in manner or exces- sively unyielding in dealing with us." He said the morning with the pope was one of "warm and fraternal dialogue." Added Bishop Thomas V. Daily of Palm Beach, Fla., "If there was any kind of tension it wasn't manifest (at the meeting)." But the bishops agreed that the pope clearly spelled out the importance of adhering to church doctrine. The pontiff "affirmed those who serve, confirmed in faith those who believe. For those who waver and are in doubt, he set the record straight," said Bishop Norbert F. Gaughan of m Gary, Ind. While bishops may disagree among themselves and at times see things differently than the pope, the meeting was evidence that "when push comes to shove, the bishops line up together, and line up with the Holy Father," said Bishop Daily. "How deeply it struck me that the teaching office of bishops has its guarantee and effectiveness in its total union with the Holy Father, our chief teacher and pastor," com- mented Bishop John R. Keating of Arlington, Va. The pope learned that "the U.S. Catholic Church is not in shambles," said Archbishop Hurley. SEPT. 27th NEW FORD VAN Fully Equipped . High Top To Be Given Away Sept. 27, 1987 You need not be prent to win 2 SECOND PRI/ES: RCA.CMR 200 VIDEO CAMCORDERS 3 THIRD PRI/: SANY0 SYS85 SIT2 SYSTEMS 5 FOURTH PRIZES: RfA.MT485 CR'$ W/REMOTE 5 FIFTH PRIZES RCA 13" COLOR TV'S W/REMOTE 5 SIXTH PRIZES AVANTI, 3.1 CUBIC FOOT REFRIGEITORS Donation $2000 Drawing 3:00 P.M. carryout begins at 8:30 a.m. cafeteria begins at 11:30 a.m. Sponsored by the Men's Club St. Phih'p's Parish ST. PHILliS, IND. 6 miles west of Evamville out Upper Mr. Vernon Road or out the Penmyivsais Expressway to the "ST. PHILIP's" sign Bring your own container for emTOUls or we have containers at aomimd luuTe! I I Stephen Ministers are assigned a person to visit regularly -- one-to-one. It is suggested that ministers spend at least an hour a week with their people. Sometimes, all they need is just someone to talk to. "The main thing is to be able to listen," said Gramelspacher. "Everything else is secondary." Stephen Ministers receive on- going eductation and group support from other ministers, program leaders and parish clergy. The Stephen Ministry pro- gram has been established na- tionally for around 12 years. It is named after Stephen, the first : deacon in the early church who was also commissioned by the apostles to care for those in need. St. Joseph will begin training new Stephen Ministers on Oct. 1. For more information, call the Parish Center, 482-1805. Twenty-six Stephen Ministers and eleven leaders served the Jasper community during the months of February, March, April and May, 1987. The following is a summary of their activities. Areas of Concern Visits Hours Homebound ....................... 61 36 Depressed ......................... 56 40 Nursing home residents .............. 63 57 Chemical abuse ..................... 39 15 Death of a spouse ................... 53 42 Handicapped ....................... 93 92 Hospitalization follow-up ............ 8 5 Auto accident victim ................ 1 1 Terminally ill ...................... 10 5 Elderly alone ....................... 17 14 New church member... : ............. 18 17 TOTAL 419 324 i Photos of Pope's Visit to The United .States Available From The .Associated Press I I I I I I I I I L_ Pope John Paul II Visits Americal A package of five dramatic color photographs of the historic visit are available from The Associated Press. These dramatic 8 x 10 quality photos can be, purchased through this newspaper at the low cost of only $29.95. The five photos are very suitable for framing. They capture all the emotion and excite- ment of the visit. Send for this memorable package of photos today by using the attached coupon. Order today. POPE JOHN PAUL II VISIT THE MESSAGE c/o The Associated Press 50 Rockefeller Plaza New York, N.Y. 10020 Enclosed is $ .... Please send me sets of .photos of Pope John Paul II's visit to the United States at $29.95 each. NAME: ADDRESS: CITY: STATE__ZIP CODE. Pk AN maim cluk ct monoy ocdf payable to The Assoclal Pm