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Evansville, Indiana
November 6, 1992     The Message
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November 6, 1992
 

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i  ! 8 The Message Monthly -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana November 6 : : : ...... Pastoral 000000ssociate heartened by parish su By MARY ANN HUGHES Message staff writer For the past 13 years, Sister Jennifer Miller, O.S.B., has been on a journey that has led her from a place of suspicion and confusion to a place of support and acceptance. She wouldn't have had it any other way. Sister Jenny is the Pastoral Associate at St. Theresa Church in Evansville. She sees herself as the "female compliment to the work of the priest." And she says her role is "pastoral in nature." As Pastoral Associate, she works with the parish youth programs and with the stu- dents in the parish school. She coordinates the religious education program, she coun- sels and she visits shut-ins and parishioners who are hospitalized. She also preaches every other week. She says she tries to be "as available as I can to help build a community in the parish and to enhance the spiritual life. I help people with their self-esteem, so they experience themselves as loved and respected people of God." It's a ministry she says she Sister Jennifer Miller, O.S.B., center, and members of the Youth Group at St. Theresa Church, Evansville, recently trav- eled to the Benedictine monastery in Cuban, Guatemala. enjoys and she is heartened by the support that surrounds her at St. Theresa's. During the 1960's and 1970's, she wag a teacher at Sts. Peter and Paul School in Haubstadt, and at St. Theresa and Rex Mundi and Mater Dei high schools, all in Evansville. She was also in- volved in campus ministry programs at the University of 24 Pastoral Associates serve in the Diocese of Evansville There are 24 Pastoral Asso- * Sister Agnes Marie Jasper; ciates serving in parishes Dauby, O.S.B., Jeffrey Ward, • Sister Bernice Kuper, throughout the Diocese of St. Joseph Church, Evans- S.P., St. John Church, New- Evansville and at Purdue University. Until 1980, she had never worked anywhere longer than one or two years. "I thought that was my gift, Always be- fore someone would call me and ask me to do another job." When Father Ted Tempel, the pastor at St. Theresa's, asked her to consider taking the position of Pastoral Ad- ministrator, she accepted, never realizing she would stay 13 years. "He said that people need to learn that they can be min- istered to pastorally by a woman or by a sister in the same way as a priest. He felt it was time that people real- ized that non-priests could minister to them in ways that only priests had formerly ministered to them." The idea appealed to her and she accepted his offer. "It attracted me. Part of me has always been a risk-taker, a pi- oneer, a pathtaker." She may have been ready for the ministry, but the parish wasn't sure it was ready for her. She was met with feelings of confusion. "In the beginning, I found it difficult because this was a new role for a Benedictine sister in the diocese and it was looked on with, if not suspicion, at least questions. "They couldn't understand. In their minds, a Benedictine sister was a teacher. That was iY her ministry. learned that I didn't some were susplclou • In true pioneer set out to prove She believes she a beginning that was ing for me, and rough, tidal wave of acce been refreshing. come to know me in toral role and they cepted me in this The parishioners have vited me into their and I have gotten to them as families and as viduals. They have the gift of trust..: : "They have said we trust you with We trust you with our That has been the bling part of my ministry the most beautiful come for dinner, to them on their turf and their story. Simply to the invitation of the be their Sister and their story." She says she has been E cially touched when with grieving families say "come and US." "That's an awfully time." " She believes that h 1 at St. Theresa's has hanced her with the Sisters of St. dict, with parishioners with the people of the cese of Evansville." ,/: Evansville. • Deacon Ed Wilkerson, Good Shepherd, Evansville; • Wilbur J. Walker, Holy Spirit Church, Evansville; • Sister Jane McCannell, O.S.F., Nativity Church, Evansville; • Sister Cleo Werner, O.S.F., Resurrection, Evans- ville; • Sister Adele Beecham, S.P., Judith Books, St. An- thony Church, Evansville; • Sister Barbara James, O.S.F., Sf; John Church, Evansville; Counseling Continued from page 1 What's next for Ann? And for other people who need emergency assistance? The amount of time required for the new approach means that some people coming to Catholic Charities for a little bit of money at the end of the month will have to go to an. other agency for that kind of assistance. What they may well get at Catholic Charities is the help they need to become more in- ville; • Sister Darlene Boyd S.F.C.C., Joann Resch, St. Mary Church, Evansville; • Sister Jennifer Miller, O.S.B., St. Theresa Church, Evansville; • Sister Geraldine Hedinger, O.S.B., Mary Ann Miles, St. Clement Church, Boonville; • Sister Joan Miller, O.S.F., St. John Church, Daylight; • Sister Geneva Stumler, O.S.B., St. Ferdinand Church, Ferdinand; • Sister Mildred Giesler, S.P., Precious Blood Church, ing a fee and helping a man update his driver's license, so the man could get a truck dri- ving job. Bockert recalled another case where a client came every month for two years and all of that time, he was unaware that he was eligible for more federal assistance than he was receiving. Under the new approach, someone takes the time to get to know what the underlying needs and resources -- are. The idea is for the coun- burgh; • Sister Renee Monaghan, O.S.U., Holy Angels Church, New Harmony; • Sister Leta ZeRer, O.S.B., St. Francis Church, Poseyville; • Sister Melanie Rauh, P.H.J.C., St. Joseph Church, Princeton; • Sister Edith Hohl, O.S.B., St. Henry Church, Dubois County; • Sister Carol Ann Manse, O.S.F., Sacred Heart Church, Vincennes; • Yvonne Lahay, St. Mary Church, Washington. IIII I I help a client become ind- pendent, then fade away. But Catholic Charities could use some help from volunteers, who might continue to be a friend to someone like Ann. A friend could reassure her, help her to continue to make progress with balancing her checkbook, just "be there." If you are interested in helping, contact your parish, or contact Tom Coe at Catholic Charities, (812) 423- 5456. Volunteers will multi- ply the good work being per- Twenty four persons have the osition at parishes in e ave widely ng fa!entS are v.ied  yet e have a tG In' CompeienCy laSed: StddS for ate," published in 1992, the.National Association Ministry provided the following common details, • A Pastoral Associate is a professional shams with the pastor in the overall care of the' or she is a memler of the • A Pastoral Associate is hired by the toral council at the local level; A PaStoral countable to the pastor and to the [ diocesan guidelines and policies. • The ministry of a Pastoral Associate is relating to all aspects of parish life with € sponsibilities such as liturgy, faith formation an ment, administration, pastoral care, and social • The designated responsibilities of a Pastoral depend on the needs of the parish and the other members of the pastoral staff. The res are clearly stated in a written position description. In the Diocese of Evansville, the title. is held by 17 women religious, four lay women, two men and one deacon. Expertise ranges from music to bookkeeping, office agement to ministry, education and catechesis, where in between. dependent.. Coe recalled pay- selors at Catholic Charities to formed. I HAUBSTA)T J StNCe lSSS ..... Bull| " _ ..__' I  [ .€--"ELECTRICLicensed, Bonded. Ire=.ured ,i Schum 00tbq,,=uny i "" to Save You ! I{.001 I a,zonumenrs,. J and Residential [ DALE, INDIAN, Time&Money TONy NAZ*aJO .O. Bo I 937-4921 [,ilGlll[$ dlUi,NSHI'OIIS i AUTO TOPS. SEAT COVERS, BOAT CC Fow HIGHLAND STEREO SALES & INSTALLATIONS CHAPEL I Factory and Cmmd Offl ! co...,.., .oe ,.s, 254-3943 ! Hwy. 231 S. Juper, IN | J I {s12} 40z-to41 ! HWY 50 EAST, BEHIND UPS CE ! ............ | EUGENE WELP, OWNER Washington Auto Trim 27 Years Service 111111 II I I Ill I ..... I III