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September 27, 1996     The Message
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September 27, 1996
 

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M:E 00AGE 26 years of serving Catholics of southwestern Indiana VOLUME 27 NUMBER 4 September 27, 1996 EAST DEANERY !, ::i ii!'i:::il Works to bridge past, future for French Catholics cY L..YNNE WEIL strengthen their faith and their effusive in their enthusiasm, ry. Many were later declared urged the French to buck the thohc News Service Christian life." At an outdoor mass in Reims martyrs, trend ofdisinterest in the regular France (CNS) h John Paul II worked to French past with the during his to France. pope Spoke ral times and at public occasion to French religious COme as a pilgrim," he said "i n order to meet th$ of France and to join in prayer in those hi important to the story of their country itself, in order to He also emphasized the treat- ment of the poor, the ill and those on the margins of French society, repeatedly reminding his listen- ers of France's commitment to tolerance and fairness and con- necting that commitment to sec- ular and nonsecular activities. Before the trip, the French werewidely reported to be indif- ferent to the pope, and several incidents of dissent indicated there might be large protests throughout his stay. These factors may have served to stimulate others to show their support; people turned out in force at most occasions and were are the qualifications to be a nominee for the Brutd from a reader's letter. QUalifications are determined within each parish, in With the published purimse of the Brut Society, "to and ' Christian stew- size, parishes may nominate one or or couples. Parish may nominate =lay persons who have been I by their fellow parishioners as outstanding mod- Jtewardship," according to Justin Clements, director of stewardship and development. 1996 nominees will be inititiated at St. Joseph sville, November 17, at 2 p.m. attended by an estimated 200,000 people Sept. 22, Pope John Paul urged fidelity to church teachings by recalling the analogy Jesus drew between his disciples and the salt of the earth. "you, baptized Christians, you Catholics of France, as a com- munity, you can keep the flavor of the Gospel message, or you can lose it," the pope said Pope John Paul used the same biblical reference to inspire young couples and their children at a Sept. 20 ceremony in Sainte- Anne-d'Auray, near the Brittany coast. "Like many parents," he said, "you are faced with the question of human and moral education of the young, while all around.you awareness of the spiritual grows weaker, and many essential val- ues are being questioned, such as the indissolubility of marriage or respect for life." He told parents and children to maintain their faith rather than letting it lose its flavor and to make themselves shining examples of Christian princi- ples. The previous day, the pope spoke to a youth gathering in Saint-Laurent-sur.Sevre in the Vendee region, where tens of thousands.of Catholics were killed during an uprising against the fledgling revolutionary gov- ,ernent in the late.18thce/ktu- "You are the heirs of men and women who were courageous enough to remain faithful to the Church of Jesus Christ at a time when its freedom and indepen- dence were threatened," the pope told the crowd of about 3,000. "They did not keep themselves apart from the movements of the time." The pope looked out over a sea of teen-agers waving flags and handkerchiefs, and said, Courage! Do not let yourselves be overcome by the indifference spread all around you! Do not let yourselves be impressed by those who reject the demands of our Christian faith or who pour scorn on it." On Sept. 21 Pope John Paul met with the down and out -- AIDS sufferers, former prosti- tutes and people who have been unemployed for long periods at a church in Tours dedicated to St. Martin, who according  leg- end shared his doak with a beg- gal'. "Like St. Martin, we ai invit- ed to open our eyes and to recog- nize in the poor person dying of cold at the gates of the city, in the stranger who knocks at our door, a brother to be welcomed an( loved," the pepe utid. "Asociety is judged on how it treats those aflticted by life and the attitude adopted toward them." .. ,Throughout the trip.the.pope practice of their faith. France is 83 percent Catholic. A recent survey by the bishops' conference shows that just 15 percent of French Catholics attend Mass each week, Attendance at most of the pope's public events exceeded projections, while turnout at demonstrations against the papal visit was lower than anticipated.