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October 16, 1987     The Message
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October 16, 1987
 

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2 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana I October 16, 1987 MSGR. CLARENCE A. SCHLACHTER Diocesan Director Society for the Propagation of the Faith On Mission Su 00day we're called to be a people ,c,f action Jesus was a man of action. He healed the sick, cured the lepers, brought sight to the blind, made the lame walk, freed the captives, cast out demons...Well, you get the picture. Jesus also demanded action in return, from His followers. Take, for example, the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves. The disciples were ready to turn the hungry crowd away, but Jesus asked them to bring Him the few loaves of bread and the fish that the disciples had. He broke and blessed the food, but He gave it to the disciples to distribute. They fed the multitudes, through His power. They became the instruments that'Jesus. used to work that miracle. In St. Matthew's Gospel, we read another call to action from Jesus. To His disciples He says: "Full authority has been given to Me in both heaven and on earth; go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations. Baptize them in the name 'of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.' Teach them to carry out everything I have commanded you. And know that I am with you always, until the end of the world!" Today we celebrate World Mission Sunday, the annual occasion promulgated by Pope John Paul II, for the entire Catholic world to support Mission churches and missionaries throughout the world: to support those who are daily Jesus' "instruments," bringing His message of hope -- the hope of redemption for those who believe in Him -- to all people. They carry out the command Jesus gave His disciples. And through them, many come to know and love Christ. The church in-the Missions is growing. It is daily becoming more widely served by its own people, with more and more ocations to the priesthood and religious life coming out of the people living in those nations. In fact, in Africa, for example, most dioceses are now headed by a native-born bishop. A short time ago, such was not the case. Vocations are growing, then. In 1986, for ex- ample, some 20 seminaries were opened on the continent of Africa and Asia to handle the increase in those who have heard, and accepted, the call to follow Jesus as "priest." And throughout the Mis- sions, there are currently 1,500 more young men studying for the priesthood than there were one year ago. This growth in faith brings with it new hopes, new dreams for those living that faith. In a barrio in Caracas, Venezuela, for example, lay mis- sionaries work with the people to help bring better phone lines into the area. In Kenya, we hear from a bishop who is working to develop a water irriga- tion system in his diocese. Another Kenyan bishop wants to open a home for disabled children, so that they can receive an education -- something that would have been denied these children other- wise. And in India, a bishop describes courses he wishes to offer the Christian laity in his mostly Hindu diocese in order to "increase their role in their church." It is leadership the diocese so desperately needs, he explains. Plans. Purposes. You car be an "instrument," a necessary one, to help with others' plans and purposes. Like the disciples, you can let Jesus work through you. The "how" of the process we'll get to in a moment. It is the "why" that is so important. When you were baptized, you received a special gift: membership in God's family, becoming a brother or a sister to Jesus. But with that gift came a special responsibility, a call to action, a call to be a missionary. In their 1986 Pastoral Statement on World Mission, "To the Ends of the Earth," the U.S. Catholic Bishops remind us of that fact: "In Bap- tism...we respond to Christ's invitation and are empowered to join in His mission." One way to fulfill your role as part of that mission is to enable missionaries throughout the world to continue their work of bringing the Good News, the message of hope, to all they meet. For the Bishops also write in their Pastoral that it is the duty of Catholics to "affirm missionaries in their efforts to proclaim the Gospel and promote the reign of God. Jesus Christ...is with them as they go forth in His name. So must the entire Church in .the United States be with them..." Now for the "how." Last year, U.S. Catholics contributed some $17.5 million in the World Mis- sion Sunday collection to "affirm" missionaries in their work, to let them know that they were not alone. The collection, gathered under the aegis of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith (SPOF), is distributed in its entirety to provide for the missionary and pastoral work of the Church worldwide. Through SPOF, 15 percent is given to the poorest faith communities of the developing world. Of the balance, 40 percent is for missionary work in needy areas of the United States, through the American Board of Catholic Missions, and nine percent, far the work of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association for the Church in the Middle East. The Bishops of the United States urge the "fullest celebration of World Mission Sunday in every parish." They quote Pope John Paul II, who said that World Mission sunday gives us "an ex- cellent occasion for an examination of conscience with regard to our missionary obligation, and for reminding all the faithful . . . that each one is involved in this duty." Through your contribution to SPOF, then, on World Mission Sunday, you are fulfilling in one way the "call to action" you received at Baptism. You are helping, too, to provide for the ac- complishment of the plans and projects of those in Mission countries. Like the Kenyan bishop's school for the disabled. Or like the Indian prelate's lay formation courses. SPOF also supports the for: marion of priests and religious through its sister society, the Society of St. Peter Apostle, as well as aiding in the development of catechists. So on this World Mission Sunday, when you are asked to contribute to the Church's worldwide missionary effort,' become a person of action and give generously. Know then that your financial sacrifice helps others to be instruments of Jesus' mission: salvation for all who believe in Him. 33 from this diocese work in foreign missions Currently, there are 33 persons from the Diocese of Evansville who are working in the foreign missions, according to Msgr. Clarence Schlachter, diocesan director of the Soeicty for the Propagation for the Faith. These persons and the countries in which they are working are: Sister Phyllis A. Backer, SCMM, Pakistan Sister Mary Leah Baehl, OSB, Peru Sister Mary Baehl, OSB, Peru Sister Mary Elise Bassler, OSB, Guatema|a Father Basil Dilger, OSB, Guatemala Brother Thomas Dillman, CSC, Liberia Sister Mary Judith Fleig, OSB, Guatemala Sister Patricia Gootee, SCMM, Peru Father Paul Gootee, SVD, Indonesia Sister Catherine Hartman, SP, Taiwan Father Eugene Heerdink, Equador, S.A. Brother Ronald D. Hein, CSC, Brazil Sister  Miriam Rachel Kunkler, MM, Tanzania Sister Romaine Kuntz, OSB, Peru Sister Barbara Jean Luebbehusen, OSB, Peru Sister Noreen McLaughlin, OSF, Papua New Guinea " Father Cletus Miller, OSB, Guatemala Sister Janet K: Miller, MM, Zimbabwe Sister Edith Pfau, SP, Taiwau Sister Camillus R. Ryan, SSPS, Philippines Sister Margie Sasse, OSB, Peru Sister Mary Joan Scheller, OSB, Guatemala. Sister Mary Alice Schnur, OSB, Guatemala Father Cletus J. Schroaring, MM, Japan Father Christopher Shappard, OSB, Peru Father James Short, SJ, Belize Sister Sarah E. Summers, SCMM, Venezuela Sister Sharon Lee Tenbarge, DC, Japan Father Richard W. Timm, CSC, Bangladesh Sister Mary Ann Verkamp, OSB, Guatemala Sister Mary M. Welp, SSPS, Ghana Father Albert J. Wilzbacher, SJ, India Father Jerry Ziliak, SVD, India l,atican lJ Continued [-tom page 1 purpose was totake the "cer- tain and unchangeable doc- trine" of the church and pre- sent it "in a way that responds to the needs of our time." The dacuments of the council touched on all aspects of Chris- tian and church life, the pope added, "throwing new light an the perennial truths of the Christian mystery." The result was "a vast pro- gram of renewal with regard to almost every area of Christian action, on the personal as well as on the communitarian level," he said. Since the council, the church has experienced "many trials," the pope said, and "many faithful had to 'walk ina dark valley.'" "It is necessary that the post- conciliar church become, always more, a community that lives a total trust," he added. Also participating in the Mass were some of the lay observers appointed to the synod. A U.S. observer, Virgil Dechant, head of the Knights of Columbus, servedas a lector. Sister Mary Milligan, a Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, was one of the bearers of the Offer- tory gifts. Sister Milligan was a theological expert appointed to the synod. During his Angelus address to a crowd of visitors and pilgrims in St. Peter's Square after the Mass, the pope said the a!miversary of the council falls during the Marian year, pro- viding an invitation for Catholics to appreciate again what the council has said about the Virgifi Mary. This cannot help but "stimulate in each one a renew- ed commitment" to the con- ciliar directives, he said. Such a commitment will help build up an ecclesial and social reality "more inspired by the evangelical principles of justice, of love and of peace," he added. ELECT RUTH WALDEN CITY CLERK I Support The Removal Of Parking Meters From The Downtown Streets. PAID FOR BY CAMPAIGN TO ELECT RUTH WALDEN COMMITTEE