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November 6, 1992     The Message
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November 6, 1992

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November 6, 1992 /, rope prays at ,VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- rebel National Patriotic Front Pope John Paul II prayed that of Liheria, denied responsi- the deaths of five U.S] nuns bility. }0nrbeena would boa catalyst The five slain Illinois ha- . vucemthe war-battered tives, all members of the West African nation. Adorers of the Blood of Christ After praying the Angelus attached to the order's con- .Nov. 1, the pol3e told a rrowd luSt , -" . vent in Re(t Bud, Ill, were: . Peter s Square that the first cousins Sisters loelle and lsters were "brutally tour- creel outs,de M,on?ev:th Liberian capital, . , . dedicated their llv( s to an- the Cospel and te:lng their brothers and sis- FOur Liberian novices liv- g with the Americans were ss reported killed Arch- nap Michael Francis of Onrovia said that the report s UnConfirmed  althou h hree novices are missing, g ^-}e archbishop t)lamed the .aths on rebel troops, but 'hades Taylor, head of the K of C 565 2901 West Maryland Full Menu Wed., Fri., Sat. 5 -- 9 p4 m. C,,,,.,,._atering Call 423-273 tk nuns' deaths will spark Liberian peace effort Shirley Kolmer, 58 and 61 re- spectively, of Waterloo; Sister Agnes Mueller, 62, of Bar- telso; Sister Kathleen McGuire, 54, of Ridgway, and Sister Barbara Ann Muttra, 69, of Springfield. They were veterans of missionary work with long service in Lit)aria. Sister Muttra had been in the country since 1971, having served prior to that in Viet- nam. "Despite the great danger" t)rought by the civil war, "until the end the sisters re- mained alongside the popula- tion threatened by the violent battles underway in that city," Pope John Paul said. "May the Lord welcome into his joy the deceased reli- gious and give consolation to their families and their sis- ters," the pope prayed "We raise our prayers to God so that ttleir sacrifice may give rise to proposals and concrete initiatives for dialogue and peace that could influence the fate of that mar- tyre(t country," he said. Liberian church officials re- port(',([ in late October that tbey were very worried after having lost contact with the sisters. Archbishop Francis ret)orted Oct. 31 that the five Alnericans were found dead. Archbishop Francis was quoted as saying that Sisters Muttra and Joelle Kolmer, who were reportedly kid- napped Oct. 20, were found dead along a street. The other three, Sisters Shirley Kohner, Mueller and McGuire, were found just outside the gates of their con- vent in Gardnersville, on the northern outskirts of Mon- rovia. The sisters were teach- ers and nurses at St. Michael's High School in Monrovia. Their killing took the largest number of U.S. clergy- women since three U.S. nuns and one American lawvoman were murdered I)y soldiers in El Salvador in December 1981. Gardnersville is behind the lines of the rebel front, one of the parties fighting for control of the country during Liberia's three-year civil war. Inside Monrovia's cathedral Nov. 1, an emotional Arch- bishop Francis told his con- gregation that the rebels "call themselves freedom fighters but thev kill innocent people.., they are destroyers not builders . . . those who murdered the sisters." The nuns had come back to Illinois in August 1990 be- cause of the danger in Liberia, but returned to West Aft',ca in 1991. In the United States, Bishop Daniel Rvan of Springfield, I11., and Cardinal Roger Ma- hony of Los Angeles, a mem- ber of the U.S. Catholic Con- ference International Policy Committee, were among those expressing shock and sorrow over the killings. 15 I i Church/World i i i i .i Pastoral 'will not pass' The U.S. Catholic bish- ops' proposed pastoral let- ter on women will not be approved when the bishops meet in November, Auxil- iary Bishop P. Francis Mur- phy of Baltimore predicted at a Syracuse diocesan meeting of Catholic women. The root problem with the letter, he said, is that it fails to question the "basic assumption':' of the church's system of patri: archy, or male domination. !As a result, he said, the whole letter is like "trying ev to put n ' wine into old wineskins" or "trying to button up a coat that has the wrong button intho first buttonhole/' Bishop Murphy delivered the keynote address at the third] annual con ference span; [ sored b the Syracuse i diocesan Commission oa| Women,  ' ! i : ! laity, to confront the ra; gion s " urbanizatioh, poverty, materialism and "culture of death.? The new evangelization emerges in Latin America as a response to a "divorce between faith and life" that ha. produced iniustice, so- cial inequatit 3 and violence in their region, say, the bishops. Broaching a num- ber of previously unad- dressed topics.qtiev all for new pastoral planulng in coming years that will ad: dress the growing urbaniza, tion of the contine, nt, deterioration of the envi- ronment, the need for ecu- menical dialogue and equal dignity for women, Nudear deterrence The Vatican nuncio to the United Nations de- clared 28 that "the