Pray, fast, give this Lent, Bishop Kemme writes

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
On Wednesday of this past week, Ash Wednesday, we began one of the Church’s most important liturgical seasons: Lent. The 40 days of Lenten penance, which includes prayer, fasting and charity, are designed to help us prepare spiritually for the Lord’s Paschal mystery celebrated during the Sacred Triduum, culminating of course with Easter Sunday. This is a most important time for us as Christians and one, which we are called to observe with diligence and attention.
All three of the Church’s traditional Lenten activities are essential for the full participation in the Christian life and should be observed throughout the entire year. During Lent, however, we place a special spotlight on them and are encouraged to live them even more intensely. I would like to offer a few simple reflections on the Lenten practices of prayer, fasting and charity, which I am hopeful will help to encourage you to practice them even more this Lent.
Prayer is the life blood of the Christian soul. Any time we give to prayer is time well spent. I want to encourage all of you to give more time and space in your daily life to prayer, especially the Prayer of the Mass, adoration, devotions and mental or contemplative prayer. Here again, I highly encourage the faithful to attend daily Mass, at least one time during the week, in addition to Sunday Mass. Give consideration to making at least a weekly holy hour in one of our adoration chapels or simply in one of our churches if an adoration chapel is not readily available.
Pray the rosary to or from work or school. Read a chapter of the bible every day, especially one of the Gospels or one of the Letters of the New Testament. Make a good confession several times during Lent. This attitude of prayer will keep you well connected to God on a daily basis. Ask the Lord to help you to pray and he surely will.
Fasting helps to build discipline in our lives, a discipline that will keep us focused on what truly matters. Many in our culture find fasting terribly difficult. To consciously choose to deny ourselves good things, like food or drink, or sleep, or anything else we have grown very accustomed to, is a great challenge for many. Fasting, if coupled with prayer, gives us a power over ourselves, a mastery over our human nature, which is essential for growth in the spiritual life.
I might suggest here that we consider fasting in terms of other things as well, like social media, technology, television, gossip, complaining, and criticism, which for many have too much power over their lives. Fasting puts all created things in proper perspective, helping us focus on the higher spiritual realities.
Finally, charity or almsgiving is the outward movement of the heart to share, to give and to support another. We should all consciously exercise some form and degree of charity every day, however small it might be. To make someone else’s life better and to lighten another’s load, is a sign of true Christian zeal and faith. There are numerous ways and opportunities we can practice charity, either at home, at school, at the parish or in our local community.
It is important that our charity be intentional, reflecting in some way the generosity we ourselves enjoy. This is the greatest sign of Christian faith and hope. For as St. Paul said so beautifully in his first letter to the Corinthians, “So faith, hope and love remain, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”
Friends, please know of my thoughts and prayers for you and for all in our diocese in a special way during Lent. We are all invited to spend these 40 days with the Lord as on retreat. May God bless our Lenten pilgrimage and may the many graces of a Lent well observed be ours in abundance in the Diocese of Wichita. God bless you all!
+ Bishop Carl Kemme

Fr. Shawn McKnight ordained a bishop

Fourth bishop of the Diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri
Yet another young, dedicated priest of the Diocese of Wichita was ordained to the fullness of the priesthood Tuesday, Feb. 6, at St. Joseph Cathedral in Jefferson City, Missouri. Twenty-one bishops and archbishops took part in the episcopal ordination of Bishop W. Shawn McKnight in front of over 1,200 of the faithful, many of whom traveled from Kansas to attend.
At the beginning of the two-hour ordination, which was broadcast on EWTN, the apostolic nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, described Bishop McKnight as “a young, dedicated priest from the Diocese of Wichita” – before formally transferring Pope Francis’ apostolic letter appointing Father McKnight as the fourth bishop of the Diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri.
“Back in November,” Abp. Pierre said, “on the day your appointment was announced, you said – careful what you say! – and you said it so well, by the way, during your press conference, I quote, ‘As I see it, Pope Francis is not so much giving the Diocese of Jefferson City to me, but rather, he is giving me to you in service to God to teach, sanctify, and shepherd the people of our local church.’”
The Liturgy of the Word followed, after which the principal consecrator, the Most Rev. Robert J. Carlson, Archbishop of St. Louis, asked that the apostolic letter from Pope Francis appointing Bishop McKnight be read to the assembly.
Abp. Carlson ‘challenges’ Bishop McKnight
In his homily after the public pronouncement, Abp. Carlson challenged Bishop McKnight to call the faithful of the Diocese of Jefferson City to spread the gospel.
“As you serve the people of this diocese, call them to be missionary disciples. This demands that you model what it means to be a missionary disciple. Your outward service must be a sign of your inward journey – an awakening to the powerful presence of the Holy Spirit in your life and vocation – the inward pilgrimage of your heart open to the love of Christ, indeed thirsting for Christ.”
He then quoted Pope Benedict XVI, who said at a different episcopal ordination, “A bishop must be a man concerned for others, one who is concerned about what happens to them. He must be a man for others. But he can only truly be so if he is a man seized by God, if concern for God also becomes for him a concern for God’s creature who is man.”
Abp. Carlson urged Bishop McKnight to live out his duties as the ordinary of the diocese in faith, hope and charity, to build up the church in love. “This demands personal strength, apostolic courage and trusting abandonment to the inner working of the Holy Spirit,” he said.
The archbishop reminded Bishop McKnight that he was being ordained on the feast day of St. Paul Miki and Companions, who gave their lives for Jesus Christ.
“In your own life as bishop you will need to be courageous,” he said. “Like Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd, you will be called to walk with the people you serve – to accompany them – but also to walk before them showing them the way to God the Father. You may – you will – have to suffer for that.”
Abp. Carlson said those who knew Bishop McKnight when he was working for the United States Conference of Bishops remember him as hard working, competent, and passionate about spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ. “The people of the Diocese of Jefferson City hope that you will focus on evangelization and vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life,” he said.
Proclaim the Word as a father and brother
“Watch over yourself and watch over the people of God,” Abp. Carlson said, quoting St. Paul, and added a statement made by Pope Francis regarding St. Paul’s words: “‘Proclaim the word on every opportune and inopportune occasion, admonish, reproach, exhort with all magnanimity and doctrine,’ but always praying for the people and loving them as a father and a brother.”
After the homily Abp. Carlson “examined” Bishop McKnight, an age-old custom, with questions before those assembled, about his resolve to uphold the faith and to discharge his duties faithfully.
The formal ordination followed, with the Litany of the Saints, a laying-on of hands, a prayer of consecration under the Book of the Gospels, an anointing of the bishop’s head, a presentation of the Book of the Gospels, and the investiture with a ring, a miter, and a pastoral staff.
Bishop McKnight then took his seat on the cathedra, the bishop’s chair. At that moment he formally took canonical possession of the diocese.
The Liturgy of the Eucharist followed. The ordination ended with a solemn blessing by the new bishop and a closing statement.
Bishop McKnight began his statement with: “I proclaim to you the Good News. Jesus Christ is risen from the dead! Because Jesus is risen, our lives are different. Because Jesus is risen, I have been sent to you.”
The newly ordained ordinary of the Diocese of Jefferson City then talked about receiving the telephone call Nov. 13 from the apostolic nuncio.
“I was startled, startled because I knew either I was in big trouble, or he was about to change the course of my life,” the new bishop said as the assembly chuckled. “And the gentleman that he is, he eased into the important matter at hand – very smoothly, doing his best to calm my soul.”
The conversation became quite serious the moment he said the words “Jefferson City,” Bishop McKnight said.
“Do you know it? Jefferson City?” the nuncio asked.
“And I replied curiously, Jefferson City, Missouri?” Bishop McKnight said.
“‘Oh good,” he said. You do know it!’” the nuncio said. “The Holy Father has appointed you the fourth bishop of Jefferson City. Do you accept?”
Bishop McKnight paused.
“Do you accept, that was it,” he said. “No application form needed to be filled out. There was no interview process. Will you, or won’t you?”
Recalling that he lost his breath for a few moments, Bishop McKnight said, “I simply responded, I do accept because of my faith in the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”
He ended his closing statement by thanking the faithful of the diocese for their warm reception, now Bishop Emeritus John R. Gaydos, his family, Bishop Carl A. Kemme, who was among the consecrators, the many priests from the Diocese of Wichita, and the faithful from the Diocese of Wichita who traveled to the ordination.
Bishop McKnight, 49, is one of the youngest bishops in the United States. He succeeds Bishop Emeritus Gaydos, 74, who retired for health reasons but plans to remain in Jefferson City.
The Jefferson City diocese includes 22,127 square miles within 38 counties in northeastern and central Missouri. There are about 82,000 Catholics. The diocese has 95 parishes and 15 missions, ranging in size from about 2,400 registered households to fewer than 50, along with 37 Catholic elementary schools and three Catholic high schools.
The diocese is mostly rural but has several medium and large urban centers, including Columbia and Jefferson City, seat of the state government.
For the ordination, blue, yellow and white banners and Bishop McKnight’s coat of arms adorned the entrance to the cathedral, in honor of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, patroness of the diocese.
Bishop McKnight is only the fourth bishop to serve the 61-year-old diocese, which includes 110 parishes and missions in 38 counties in central and northeastern Missouri.
He chose “Gratias Agamus Domino” — “Let us give thanks to the Lord” — as his episcopal motto.

Diocesan news, February 16, 2018

Bishop Kemme makes two priest assignments
Bishop Carl A. Kemme has announced the assignments of two priests:
The Rev. Andrew E. Heiman, Pastor, Church of the Blessed Sacrament, Wichita, Kansas, effective, Feb. 27, 2018
The Rev. Michael M. Simone, Administrator, St. Joseph, Wichita, Kansas, without prejudice to being Diocesan Chancellor and Director of St. Joseph House of Formation, effective, Feb. 13, 2018
The canonical law term “without prejudice” means with changes to the current assignment.

Bishop Kemme’s calendar
Here is Bishop Carl A. Kemme’s calendar for the next several weeks.
February
Feb. 15-16: Jesus Caritas at St. Benedict’s Abbey in Atchison
Feb. 17: Rite of Election at Cathedral at 10 a.m.; Catholic Men’s Conference Mass at Kapaun Mt. Carmel High School
Feb. 18: Rite of Election at Cathedral at 2:30 p.m. and at 4:30 p.m.
Feb. 21: Confirmation Mass at 6:30 p.m. at Our Lady of Lourdes in Pittsburg
Feb. 22: Regional priest meeting at Our Lady of Lourdes in Pittsburg
Feb. 24: Mass and luncheon for consecrated religious at the Cathedral; Confirmation Mass at 5:30 p.m. at St. Francis in St. Paul
Feb. 25: Confirmation Mass at 10 a.m. at St. Martin of Tours in Caldwell; Catholic Charities Cruise Night at Hyatt Regency
Feb. 28: Confirmation Mass at 6:30 p.m. at St. Francis of Assisi in Wichita
March
March 2: Mass for Serra Club Vocation Day at Church of the Magdalen in Wichita at 9:45 a.m. March 3: Mass and Dinner for Persons with Disabilities, their families and caregivers at Blessed Sacrament at 5:15 p.m.
March 4: Confirmation Mass at 10:30 a.m. at St. Anthony/St. Rose in Wellington
March 5-7: Recently Ordained Priest Retreat at Spiritual Life Center, Wichita
March 7: Confirmation Mass at 6:30 p.m. at St. Cecilia in Haysville
March 8-10: Conception Seminary visit and Board of Regents meeting
March 11: Closing Mass for DCYC at DoubleTree Hilton at 10 a.m.; New rectory blessing at St. Joseph in Ost
March 13: Regional Priest meeting at Spiritual Life Center, Wichita
March 14: Confirmation Mass at 6:30 p.m. at St. Joan of Arc in Harper County
March 15: Confirmation Mass at 6:30 p.m. at St. Joseph in Andale
March 16: Regional Priest meeting at Spiritual Life Center, Wichita

Padre Pio relics to stop in diocese on April 13
Relics of St. Pio of Pietrelcina will visit the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita on Friday, April 13.
They are on tour as part of a 50th commemoration anniversary of Padre Pio’s death.
The relics that will be available for veneration include a glove, crests of his wounds, cotton gauze with St. Pio’s bloodstains, a lock of his hair, his mantle, and St. Pio’s handkerchief with sweat just hours before he died.
Details about the visit are being finalized and will be announced later.
The event is being coordinated by the Saint Pio Foundation of New Rochelle, New York.

Daniel Plan begins Wednesday at the St. Joe Pastoral Center
The next four-week session of the Daniel Plan begins Wednesday, Feb. 21.
The healthy lifestyle course will be offered from noon to 1 p.m. in the St. Joseph Pastoral Center at 437 N. Topeka in Wichita.
The sessions will focus on faith and how God is the power and the energy behind all transformational change – including making the lifestyle choices necessary to become healthy. The Daniel Plan emphasizes that it is through God’s power that people change, gaining strength from being rooted and grounded in his love.
The cost is $10. To register, call 316-685-5240 or mail $10 to the Office of Marriage and Family Life, 437 N. Topeka Wichita, KS 67202.

Holy Family Camp set for June 11-14
Applications for Holy Family Camp will be available in early March.
Holy Family Camp is an annual, week-long summer spiritual experience for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Campers enjoy a week of prayer, Mass, the Sacrament of Reconciliation, a variety of lessons, music, swimming, games, crafts, special events – and friends.
A volunteer staff travels from throughout the diocese to participate in the event sponsored by the Ministry With Persons With Disabilities.
A previous camper, Hannah Metcalfe, says she enjoys sleeping in the cabins, having her own “buddy,” swimming, dancing, and getting to meet other campers.
“I like the talent show and I got to sing with my boyfriend last summer,” she said, adding that her favorite meal is “all of them!”

Mass for People with Disabilities March 3
The 4th Annual Mass for People with Disabilities, their families and caregivers, will be celebrated Saturday, March 3, in Blessed Sacrament Church, located at 124 N. Roosevelt in Wichita.
A dinner will immediately follow. A free will offering will be accepted for the meal. The Faithful Flock Band will entertain, and activities will be available for children.
For reservations contact Rosemary Brooks at dbrooks66@cox.net or 316-686-4422.

Bike camp for disabled children in July
A bike camp will be offered this summer to help persons with disabilities learn how to ride a bicycle.
The iCan Bike Camp, for persons eight years and older, will be hosted July 16-18 in Wichita by the Independent Living Resources Center.
To register for the camp or for more information, visit www.ilrcks.org, call Cindi at 316-942-6300, ext. 222, or email her at cunruh@ilrcks.org.

JayDoc fundraiser set for Feb. 17 at Botanica
WICHITA – The JayDoc Community Clinic is hosting a fundraising banquet at 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 17, in the Lotus Room at Botanica.
The student run clinic, associated with the KU School of Medicine-Wichita, was founded in 2005 and provides affordable healthcare to medically underserved patients and gives medical and pharmacy students hands-on clinical experience. JayDoc students also assist the Guadalupe Clinic, a diocesan health ministry.
For reservations visit kuendowment.org/jaydocbanquet, or call 316-293-2607.

Marriage enrichment series begins Feb. 22
A marriage enrichment series will be offered from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on four consecutive Thursdays beginning Feb. 22 in the Youth Room at St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Andover.
The four-session series, which ends March 15, is designed to provide couples with practical tools to enhance and improve their relationships.
The program was created by the Gottman Institute to summarize their decades of research and to guide couples on the path of what actually works in relationships.
Couples will discuss friendship, fondness, and admiration; romance and intimacy; managing conflict, and solving problems, among other topics.
Couples not yet married, engaged couples, and married couples are invited. Lisa Butler, a licensed therapist at Cana Counseling, Catholic Charities, will lead the classes.
The cost is $100 per couple. To register call 316-264-8344 ext. 1317 or sign up at the church.

Seminarian talks about the priesthood
Seth Arnold, a fourth year college seminarian, talks about seminary life in a video now available at the diocesan website.
“When I tell people I’m a seminarian studying to be a Catholic priest, I get a wide range of reactions,” he says.
The video is available at CatholicDioceseOfWichita.org/vocations.
Arnold is a member of Holy Spirit Parish in Goddard.

Susan Peters to speak at fundraiser April 6
Wichita television personality Susan Peters will be the guest speaker at the Sarah’s Hope Foundation’s 17th annual dinner and silent auction Friday, April 6, at St. Jude Hall, 3030 N. Amidon in Wichita.
Father Jim Mainzer and seminarian Andy Beaugelsdijk will be guests of honor at the event.
The doors open at 6 p.m. Dinner by Ray’s Catering begins at 6:30. The cost is $20 per person. A silent auction will also be held.
For reservations, to be a sponsor, or to donate to the auction may call 316-209-5029.

What makes a stewardship diocese different from other dioceses?

What we’ve learned about Stewardship
By Fr. Ken Van Haverbeke
The Office of Stewardship in the Diocese of Wichita receives many questions about the diocesan practice of stewardship. What they are often really asking is: How is a stewardship diocese different? In what ways is the Diocese of Wichita implementing stewardship differently?
In response, we have composed the following thoughts. These elements may not be exclusive to the Diocese of Wichita, but are certainly found here:
• Stewardship in the Diocese of Wichita is well defined, as opposed to being vague. We have defined stewardship as “The grateful response of a Christian disciple who recognizes and receives God’s gifts and shares these gifts in love of God and neighbor.”
• Stewardship is a “climate” in the Diocese of Wichita. A climate is often defined as a “prevailing condition or environment.” The prevailing environment in the Diocese of Wichita is that as disciples of Jesus Christ, we share our gifts generously, sacrificially, and proportionately, in a committed manner, in love of God and neighbor. Outside of this environment, we wither and die spiritually.
• Stewardship in the Diocese of Wichita is a spirituality, meaning stewardship is not about funding ministries. Stewardship is not a gimmick to get money for worthy causes. It’s about eternal salvation. It’s about heaven or hell. It’s about accepting God’s gifts and using them, not burying them or hoarding them. It’s about our baptismal call.
• Stewardship in the Diocese of Wichita is preached year round especially by the bishop. Since the diocese collectively decided to be a stewardship diocese in 1985, we have received three different bishops since then. Each bishop has embraced the Stewardship Way of Life, and has preached it in his own words, using his own experiences to explain it. Even though each bishop is unique, the message remains constant because the message is from the Gospel. It is a simple message: Everything we have is a gift from God, and we will be held accountable for how we have used these gifts. (Matthew 25:14–30)
• Stewardship in the Diocese of Wichita is not just in certain parishes. We live the Stewardship Way of Life in rural and urban parishes, English/Vietnamese/Spanish speaking parishes; all parishes, because once one decides to follow Jesus, stewardship is not an option; and all of our parishes follow Jesus.
• Stewardship in the Diocese of Wichita is not seen as money, but contributing our money is seen as act of stewardship. Money represents security. When we sacrificially, generously give a proportion of our income, this is an act of trust in the Lord. Parishioners tithe to their parish; parishes tithe to the Diocese; and the Diocese tithes to the Universal Church. All of us are placing our security not in our bank savings but in the Lord!
• Stewardship in the Diocese of Wichita is proclaimed and preached by the laity, not just the priests. It is the leadership of the parishioners in the pew which brings the message of stewardship to other parishioners.
They speak a common language of worries about children, employment, and bills. It is through the laity of the diocese that stewardship is preached primarily. This is accomplished through our Catholic schools, PSR classes, Lay Witness talks, sacramental preparation, and simply one on one
• In the Diocese of Wichita, development is seen as an act of stewardship. Our parish and diocesan ministry budgets do not depend solely upon development. We have no annual Bishop’s appeal, but the Bishop appeals to the parishioners to be a grateful steward for one’s ongoing holiness. Our development opportunities build on the foundation of stewardship. Development provides opportunities for parishioners to share their gifts, by informing, inspiring, and inviting stewards to give to specific needs that might not be otherwise recognized. For us, development is an act of stewardship.
• Finally, in the Diocese of Wichita, nickel and dime fundraising is strongly discouraged. The Diocese of Wichita made a collective decision in 1985 to stop relying upon fundraising to pay for the various missions of the church.
Instead, each family and each parishioner was asked to sacrificially, generously, and proportionately tithe a portion of their income. No more Bingo! No more selling of candy. No more operating a restaurant out of the parish buildings, and no more second collections at Mass to fund a worthy project.
As a diocese, we promised if parishioners would simply tithe generously, sacrificially, and proportionately, the diocese and parish would not “nickel and dime” them with fundraisers and second collections.
This does not mean the youth group will not have a car wash, or that the Knights of Columbus won’t give out candy, but it does mean our parishes will not depend upon fundraising to pay for its ministries; rather they will depend upon stewardship tithing. Repetitively having fundraisers, nickel and diming people for funds is a sure way to hurt stewardship as a way of life because of the sole focus upon money.
These are just a few ways the Diocese of Wichita implements stewardship which may be different from other dioceses.
In recognizing the blessings we have received, and realizing the challenges of continued growth in the Lord through the stewardship way of life, our diocese must not become arrogant or proud because of the fruits we have received. In fact, “Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more.” (Luke 12:48)
Continued growth in the stewardship as a way of life will be challenging, but if we continue to choose to become a disciple of Jesus Christ, stewardship will not be an option.
Always a challenge, always a blessing, for it means that we are being led by the Holy Spirit. This means we must love and trust enough, to have as our only security, his guidance.

Avance Católico, Viernes, 16 de Febrero 2018

Obispo Kemme espera anunciar su Visión en la Misa Crismal el 27 de Marzo
Queridos hermanos y hermanas en Cristo,
El otoño pasado, como ya sabrán, dirigí 10 sesiones de escucha en toda la diócesis, reuniéndome en varios lugares y con varios grupos de nuestra familia diocesana. Estas sesiones de escucha fueron pensadas para darme la oportunidad de escuchar al Espíritu Santo verdaderamente trabajando en los corazones y las almas de las personas a las que yo y mis hermanos sacerdotes tenemos el honor de servir.
Puedo decir con toda sinceridad que estoy profundamente inspirado y conmovido por todo lo que escuché, reflexionando sobre tres preguntas sencillas pero profundas: ¿qué hacemos bien como diócesis ?, ¿qué podemos y debemos estar haciendo mejor ?, y , ¿En qué prioridades deberíamos enfocarnos durante los próximos tres a cinco años?
Las respuestas que recibimos fueron sustanciales. Entre los muchos temas que surgieron de las sesiones de escucha se encuentran: stewardship, evangelización, especialmente para nuestros jóvenes y adultos jóvenes, mayor asistencia a misa, educación católica, vocaciones diocesanas y religiosas, necesidades crecientes de personas con discapacidades, liturgia sagrada y reverencia, adoración , alcance a los pobres y vulnerables, formación permanente del clero, discipulado, diezmo y una multitud de muchos otros temas dignos e interesantes. En muchos sentidos, hacemos la mayoría, si no todos, bien, reconociendo, por supuesto, que siempre hay margen de mejora.
¿Entonces, dónde vamos desde aquí? ¿Cuál es el próximo paso en este importante proceso? Me gustaría decirles. Recientemente, los 15 delegados diocesanos que se unieron a mí para la convocatoria nacional del verano pasado “La Alegría del Evangelio en América” en Orlando, Florida, se reunieron durante dos días y discernieron cuál debería ser nuestra visión y qué prioridades estableceríamos para los próximos tres a cinco años.
De nuevo, esta vez fue dinámico, atractivo e incluso desafiante. Descubrimos que hay mucho en lo que enfocarnos, pero nos dimos cuenta de que sería prudente limitar nuestras prioridades a solo unas pocas para garantizar el éxito y la excelencia. Seguiremos discerniendo esta pregunta durante las próximas semanas.
Tengo la esperanza y el plan de develar nuestra declaración de visión y el conjunto de prioridades en la misa crismal o cerca de ella en marzo. Después de eso, miraré a nuestros pastores y directores de nuestras oficinas de la curia y otros ministerios relacionados para tomar esta visión y las prioridades, y para discernir con sus diversos constituyentes las estrategias que utilizarán para abordar nuestras prioridades diocesanas en su contexto particular de vida parroquial y ministerio. Espero que este sea un momento de renovación para todas nuestras parroquias, oficinas diocesanas y ministerios relacionados.
Es un momento emocionante para nuestra diócesis. Como alguien dijo en nuestra reunión de visión reciente, estamos en una encrucijada en nuestra historia. Mirando hacia atrás en los últimos 30 o más años y, de hecho, revisando toda la historia de nuestra diócesis, ahora miramos hacia el futuro inmediato. En el espíritu del Papa Francisco, intentemos llevar la Alegría del Evangelio a una nueva generación con una vitalidad renovada, entusiasmo y vida.
Quiero agradecer profundamente a todos los que participaron en las sesiones de escucha en persona o en el sitio web de la diócesis. Su contribución a nuestra misión es un gran regalo.
Por favor, continúen orando para que el Espíritu Santo nos dé sabiduría, fortaleza, entendimiento, buen juicio, piedad, coraje y temor del Señor. El Espíritu Santo ha dotado a la iglesia desde el día de Pentecostés. El Espíritu Santo nunca nos fallará si buscamos sabiduría desde arriba.
Dios te bendiga y que Dios bendiga a la Diócesis de Wichita.
+ Obispo Carl A. Kemme

Encuentro Diocesano: evangelizando y creando una Iglesia misionera en la Diócesis de Wichita
El Encuentro Diocesano se llevará a cabo en la Iglesia de San Andrés en Independence el 17 de Marzo. Para más información llame a la Oficina del Ministerio Hispano al (316) 269-3919.
¿Qué es el V (quinto) Encuentro?
Muchas personas en la diócesis todavía se preguntan de qué se trata. Una de las razones y los objetivos del V Encuentro es alentar a los fieles católicos a escuchar con gran atención a las necesidades, problemas y aspiraciones de la creciente población hispana en todo Estados Unidos.
Pero también el proceso pretende ayudar a reconocer mejor, adoptar y promover los numerosos dones y talentos que podría compartir la gente hispana con la Iglesia y en la sociedad.
El Encuentro es una iniciativa nacional que se realizó por vez primera en 1972 y el más reciente en el 2000. En cada vez tuvo el objetivo de discernir cómo servir a la población hispana en los Estados Unidos.
Hoy, sin embargo, muchos hispanos no están tomando su fe en serio, y ellos constituyen una mayoría de los Católicos en los Estados Unidos.
Hay un número de parroquias donde la mayoría son hispanos en las cuales hubo un grupo de personas que sí tomaron en serio esta iniciativa. El proceso incluyó cinco reuniones y terminó con mucho éxito, tanto en Wichita y como en el sureste.
El proceso del V Encuentro ha dado a quienes participaron la oportunidad de prepararse para ser verdaderos Discípulos Misioneros: Testigos del Amor de Dios. Ha sido un excelente proceso intencional de escucha y de consulta.
Al mismo tiempo se experimentó la necesidad de unirnos más en la oración para llegar a las periferias de nuestra Diócesis y atraer a aquellos que no han tenido un encuentro personal con Cristo y su Iglesia. Al mismo tiempo ayudar a sacar diferentes temores y apoyar a las familias y sus jóvenes.
Formando Discípulos Misioneros
Los cinco temas centrales del proceso de consulta realizada el año pasado nacieron de un deseo de tener mayor claridad en cómo llegar a la gente en las periferias, averiguar cuál es el valor de la Iglesia y cómo la gente encuentra a Jesucristo en sus vidas diarias.
El proceso que se ha llevado a tomado en cuenta que se puede llegar a la gente y hablar acerca de Jesús, solo si primero escuchamos a sus alegrías, esperanzas y dolores — qué es lo que parte el corazón de la gente hoy, especialmente entre los jóvenes.
También retamos a las mismas personas que encontramos a preguntarse cómo quiere Dios que nos comprometamos y seamos testigos del Reino de Dios que Él está edificando en nuestro medio.
La reunión diocesana será una culminación de todas las reuniones de Encuentro. Al mismo tiempo, nuestro Encuentro Diocesano es una preparación para el Encuentro Regional en abril en Kansas City y finalmente para el Encuentro Nacional que tendrá lugar en Grapevine, Texas en septiembre próximo.
Hacia adelante
Con el espíritu de Emaús continuamos en el camino, con nuestros corazones ardientes, para evangelizar, anunciar la Buena Nueva y llevar a Jesús Cristo a un encuentro con los demás.
En este momento en que nos prepararnos para el Encuentro Diocesano, reconocemos que no somos una isla; no somos una iglesia distinta. Somos una familia en Cristo y juntos, a través de la santa Eucaristía, proclamamos una iglesia, una sola fe y un solo Cristo Jesús.
Por ello invitamos a todos nuestros hermanos y hermanas en nuestra Diócesis a unirse en oración por el éxito y la continuación de este siguiente paso del proceso.
Jake Samour es el director de la Oficina Para la Pastoral de Matrimonios y Vida Familiar.
¿Más información?
Para más información sobre el V Encuentro, visite la página vencuentro.org/es, llame a la oficina del Ministerio Hispano y hable con la Sra. Danny Krug al 316-269-3919.

Cuaresma: tiempo de conversión
Este año 2018, la Cuaresma comienza el 14 de febrero con la celebración del Miércoles de Ceniza.
Ayuno y Abstinencia
El ayuno consiste en hacer una sola comida fuerte al día. La abstinencia consiste en no comer carne. Son días de abstinencia y ayuno el Miércoles de Ceniza y el Viernes Santo.
La abstinencia obliga a partir de los catorce años y el ayuno de los dieciocho hasta los cincuenta y nueve años de edad.
Con estos sacrificios, se trata de que todo nuestro ser (espíritu, alma y cuerpo) participe en un acto donde reconozca la necesidad de hacer obras con las que reparemos el daño ocasionado con nuestros pecados y para el bien de la Iglesia.
El ayuno y la abstinencia se pueden cambiar por otro sacrificio, dependiendo de lo que dicten las Conferencias Episcopales de cada país, pues ellas son las que tienen autoridad para determinar las diversas formas de penitencia cristiana.
¿Por qué el Ayuno?
Es necesario dar una respuesta profunda a esta pregunta, para que quede clara la relación entre el ayuno y la conversión, esto es, la transformación espiritual que acerca del hombre a Dios.
El abstenerse de la comida y la bebida tienen como fin introducir en la existencia del hombre no sólo el equilibrio necesario, sino también el desprendimiento de lo que se podría definir como “actitud consumística”.
Tal actitud ha venido a ser en nuestro tiempo una de las características de la civilización occidental. El hombre, orientado hacia los bienes materiales, muy frecuentemente abusa de ellos. La civilización se mide entonces según la cantidad y la calidad de las cosas que están en condiciones de proveer al hombre y no se mide con el metro adecuado al hombre.
Esta civilización de consumo suministra los bienes materiales no sólo para que sirvan al hombre en orden a desarrollar las actividades creativas y útiles, sino cada vez más para satisfacer los sentidos, la excitación que se deriva de ellos, el placer, una multiplicación de sensaciones cada vez mayor.
El hombre de hoy debe abstenerse de muchos medios de consumo, de estímulos, de satisfacción de los sentidos: ayunar significa abstenerse de algo. El hombre es él mismo sólo cuando logra decirse a sí mismo: No.
No es la renuncia por la renuncia: sino para el mejor y más equilibrado desarrollo de sí mismo, para vivir mejor los valores superiores, para el dominio de sí mismo.

¿Es toda Parroquia en la Diócesis de Wichita una Parroquia de Stewardship?
Por el P. Van Haverbeke

«Aquí no hacemos esa cosa de Stewardship. Eso es cosa de Wichita.» Me dijo, Charlotte, un feligrés.
Charlotte (no es su verdadero nombre) asistió a una parroquia a muchos kilómetros de la sombra de la Catedral. Al preguntarle qué quería decir, dijo: “Bueno, somos una pequeña parroquia rural”. No completamos todos los formularios cada otoño o tenemos un consejo de stewardship. Eso es algo que hacen las parroquias en la ciudad de Wichita “.
De una manera ella tenía razón porque su parroquia no participa plenamente en la renovación de stewardship, ni reconoce siempre la necesidad de liderazgo laico en los consejos, como un consejo de stewardship.
Pero, esencialmente, si los feligreses en su parroquia son seguidores de Jesucristo, entonces el stewardship no es una opción. Independientemente de que si una parroquia pone o no los afiches diocesanos de stewardship, aún son administradores de los dones que Dios les ha dado.
La práctica de stewardship comienza en el nacimiento cuando todos nosotros recibimos el regalo más grande de Dios: la vida. Debemos ser administradores de esa vida y de todos los demás dones variados que Dios nos ha dado durante esa vida hasta la muerte. Es un proceso de por vida.
En el Sacramento del Bautismo recibimos el “llamado al discipulado”. En el Sacramento de la Confirmación es donde se nos envían comprometidos en acción, como discípulos, a compartir nuestros dones dados por Dios en amor y servicio a Dios y al prójimo.
Estoy seguro de que Charlotte estaría de acuerdo con todo esto. A lo que Charlotte se estaba refiriendo era a un proceso que la Diócesis de Wichita usa para responder al llamado bautismal al discipulado. El proceso de renovación anual de compartir los regalos de uno generosamente, de forma sacrificada y proporcionalmente y, de una manera comprometida.
En la Diócesis de Wichita, hemos aprendido que debemos ser invitados, alentados y desafiados a reconocer, recibir y aceptar nuestros dones dados por Dios y, luego, dentro de un proceso bien organizado, comprometernos anualmente a compartir el tiempo, talento y tesoro, al servicio de la amplia misión de la parroquia y de la Iglesia universal más amplia.
¿Tienen todas nuestras parroquias un proceso bien organizado para comprometerse anualmente a compartir tiempo, talento y tesoro? Sí, casi todas las 90 parroquias de la diócesis lo hacen de alguna manera.
Sin embargo, cada vez que un feligrés o pastor dice «¡el stewardship no funciona en nuestra parroquia!», yo les pregunto sobre su proceso anual, su consejo de stewardship, su participación de liderazgo laico en un consejo pastoral y financiero. Muy a menudo se les pasan por alto o no existen, y el stewardship sufre. Finalmente les pregunto sobre sus actividades de recaudación de fondos. Tener recaudaciones de fondos repetitivamente, y el pedir un centavo aquí y allá a la gente es una forma de dañar el stewardship como una forma de vida.
El Stewardship trata sobre el discipulado y nuestro llamado a una acción comprometida. Independientemente de si una persona llena los formatos de stewardship, cada seguidor bautizado de Jesús es llamado a ser un administrador agradecido.

La Parroquia de Nuestra Señora del Perpetuo Socorro organiza cenas para la Cuaresma
WICHITA - Los feligreses de Nuestra Señora del Perpetuo Socorro continuarán con su larga tradición de servir cenas mexicanas sin carne en los viernes de Cuaresma.
Enchiladas de queso y cebolla, tostadas, tacos de papa, chiles rellenos y otros platillos mexicanos se servirán a partir de las 5 p.m. los viernes de Cuaresma del 16 de febrero al 23 de marzo en el Centro Parroquial.
La comida se prepara fresca cada semana para ordenar. Para comer en la parroquia o para llevar, estas opciones están disponibles.
Los ingresos financian becas para enviar niños de la parroquia de Nuestra Señora del Perpetuo Socorro a las escuelas católicas diocesanas.

Aviso: DACA y Dreamers
Aquellas personas con certificados DACA que han expirado o están por expirar, deben enviar una petición para renovarlos lo antes posible.
Estas personas deben llamar a la oficina de Inmigración de Caridades Católicas al 316-264-8344 para pedir una cita y empezar el proceso.
Esto les ayudará inmensamente con su situación legal actual y cualquiera decisión futura de la Corte Suprema.

Dos sacerdotes mexicanos asesinados en emboscada
CIUDAD DE MÉXICO (CNS) -- Dos sacerdotes fueron asesinados, acribillados por balas mientras regresaban de celebraciones de la Candelaria en una zona de México llena de violencia de carteles de la droga, un lugar que cada día es más peligroso para sacerdotes.
Los padres Iván Añorve Jaimes y Germain Muñiz García fueron asesinados el 5 de febrero mientras conducían entre las ciudades de Taxco e Iguala en el estado de Guerrero, a unas 100 millas al sur de Ciudad de México.
Funcionarios estatales de Guerrero dijeron que un grupo armado bloqueó la furgoneta de los sacerdotes y abrió fuego. Los sacerdotes viajaban con otros cuatro pasajeros, todos resultaron heridos.
Funcionarios eclesiales de Guerrero condenaron los asesinatos y pidieron una investigación.
“Como Iglesia estamos consternados ante este trágico suceso que enluta a toda la comunidad arquidiocesana y a la comunidad de la diócesis de Chilpancingo-Chilapa”, dijo la Arquidiócesis de Acapulco en un comunicado.

Intención del Santo Padre para Febrero
En febrero, el Papa Francisco pide rezar en todo el mundo para frenar la corrupción: “Para que aquellos que tienen un poder material, político o espiritual no se dejen dominar por la corrupción”.

Calendario Hispano
Planificación Familiar Natural en Español: Para más información e inscripción en cualquiera de las siguientes clases favor de comunicarse con Marisa Hernández en la Oficina del Ministerio Hispano al 316-269-3919.
• Domingo 18 de febrero, 2 p.m. Catedral de la Inmaculada Concepción.
Cursillo de Cristiandad - Escuela de Dirigentes – Wichita: primer y tercer viernes del mes, 7 p.m. en el salón Madre Teresa de la Iglesia de San Patricio. Coordinadora: Patricia Benavides, tlf. 316-210-0004.
• Arkansas City: Tercer domingo de cada mes, después de la Misa de 11 a.m. en el Salón Parroquial de la Iglesia Sagrado Corazón. Coordinadores: Isabel Rodriguez y Lauro Lopez, 620-660-5180 y 316-559-3776.
• Hutchinson: segundo viernes de cada mes, 7 p.m. en el Salon Parroquial de la Iglesia Ntra. Sra. de Guadalupe. Coordinadores: Norma Urueta y Patty Benavides, 620-474-5238 y 316-210-0004
Cursillo de Cristiandad - Ultreyas – Wichita: último viernes del mes, 7 p.m. en la cafetería de la Escuela de San Patricio. Coordinadores: Efren y Laura Martinez asistidos por Laura Martinez. Arkansas City: tercer domingo del mes 1 p.m. Salón Parroquial de la Iglesia Sagrado Corazón. Coordinadora: Isabel Rodriguez. Hutchinson: cuarto domingo del mes, 1:30 p.m. en el Gimnasio de la Iglesia Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe. Coordinadora: Norma Hurueta (620)474-5238.
Taller “A Nuestro Alcance,” Centro Pastoral Hispano, 10 de marzo, 9 de junio y 6 de octubre. Para más información e inscripción, favor comunicarse con Jake Samour al (316) 202-0645.
Seminario de Preparación Matrimonial, Centro Pastoral Hispano, 5 de mayo, 11 de agosto y 1ro de Diciembre. Para más información e inscripción, favor comunicarse con Jake Samour al (316) 202-0645.

Nuevas sesiones de inglés y Ciudadanía en el Centro Pastoral
Orientación lunes, 26 de marzo a las 6:30 p.m.
Una vez más la oficina del Ministerio Hispano se prepara para comenzar los cursos de Inglés Básico, Intermedio, avanzado, como también el curso de camino a la Ciudadanía.
Otra clase que se ofrece es la de conversación para poner en práctica lo aprendido. Estos cursos se llevarán a cabo en el Centro Pastoral San José una vez a la semana de 6:30 a 8:30 p.m. ya sea lunes, martes o jueves dependiendo de su clase. La duración es 10 semanas desde abril a junio. Donación: $20 por curso. También, si está interesado, le invitamos a la noche de Orientación, Inscripción y selección de clases el 26 de marzo a las 6:30 p.m. en el Centro Pastoral San José, en el 437 N. Topeka, Wichita. Llámenos para más información al (316) 269-3919.

Parish news, February 16, 2018

Holy Savior Parish hosting discussion about racism Feb. 24
A discussion of the book Racial Justice and the Catholic Church, written by Father Brian Massingale, will be held Saturday, Feb. 24, by Holy Savior Parish.
The discussion will take place from 9 to 11:30 a.m. at the St. Peter Claver Complex, located at 1209 N. Indiana in Wichita. Lunch will be served.
Reservations are requested. To do so email maryonjoyce@msn.com.
Father Massingale is a professor at Fordham University and a priest of the Diocese of Milwaukee.

St. Catherine of Siena Lenten family retreat set for March 17-18
St. Catherine of Siena Parish in Wichita will host “Lord, Teach us to Pray,” a Lenten family retreat, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, March 17-18, in the Parish Education Center.
The weekend event includes adoration for adults and children, Mass, sessions for adults and children, snacks, and lunch both days.
The cost is $25 per person, $40 per couple, and $60 per family. To register visit SaintCatherineWichita.com/lenten-family-retreat. Registration closes on March 5.

Mass for People with Disabilities March 3
The 4th Annual Mass for People with Disabilities, their families and caregivers, will be celebrated Saturday, March 3, in Blessed Sacrament Church, located at 124 N. Roosevelt in Wichita.
A dinner will immediately follow. A free will offering will be accepted for the meal. The Faithful Flock Band will entertain, and activities will be available for children.
For reservations contact Rosemary Brooks at dbrooks66@cox.net or 316-686-4422.

Our Lady of Perpetual Help to host meatless Friday Lenten dinners
WICHITA – Our Lady of Perpetual Help parishioners will continue their long tradition of serving meatless Mexican dinners on the Fridays of Lent.
Cheese and onion enchiladas, tostadas, potato tacos, chile rellenos and other Mexican dishes will be served beginning at 5 p.m. on the Fridays of Lent from Feb. 16 to March 23 in the Parish Center.
Justin Kelley, coordinator for the event, said the food is prepared fresh each week to order and that the parish will again offer dine in and carry out options.
Proceeds finance scholarships to send Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish children to Catholic schools. Students receiving scholarships and their parents volunteer to work in a variety of roles at one or more of the six Friday dinners.
“We look forward to the dinners, not only to see old friends and enjoy fellowship,” said Steve Bauer, a longtime parishioner, “but the food is always very good and is a great option to fish on Friday’s during Lent.”

Ladies of Grace Tea March 10 at cathedral
The Ladies of Grace Tea, hosted by the Altar Society of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita, will be served Saturday, March 10, in Good Shepherd Hall.
Tables of eight can be reserved for $80. For a reservation, contact Altar Society President Mary Santiago at (316) 943-0416.

Marriage enrichment series begins Feb. 22
A marriage enrichment series will be offered from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on four consecutive Thursdays beginning Feb. 22 in the Youth Room at St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Andover.
The four-session series, which ends March 15, is designed to provide couples with practical tools to enhance and improve their relationships.
The program was created by the Gottman Institute to summarize their decades of research and to guide couples on the path of what actually works in relationships.
Couples will discuss friendship, fondness, and admiration; romance and intimacy; managing conflict, and solving problems, among other topics.
Couples not yet married, engaged couples, and married couples are invited. Lisa Butler, a licensed therapist at Cana Counseling, Catholic Charities, will lead the classes.
The cost is $100 per couple. To register call 316-264-8344 ext. 1317 or sign up at the church.

Spiritual Life Center news, February 16, 2018

Sessions to focus on the family start Feb. 19 at the Spiritual Life Center
By Jake Samour
Let’s Talk Family!, a six-session series, will be presented at the Spiritual Life Center Mondays beginning Feb. 19.
The series is an initiative to promote and resource this study at the request of the Holy Father and at the same time prepare for the World Meeting of Families in Dublin in August 2018. Let’s Talk Family! seeks to invite “marriage and the family to be the focal point of faith development in all its forms.”
In his apostolic exhortation, Pope Francis expressed a hope that families and those involved in supporting families would study the document carefully and patiently.
Participants in the series will be invited to take part in a process designed to be interactive and participative. They will be helped to reflect on and articulate their experience of marriage and family life. The series takes, as its starting point, people’s experience of love and their hopes and fears with regard to marriage and family
The cost is $30 per couple includes a workbook that explores key messages in from on Pope Francis’ The Joy of Love (Amoris Laetitia).
The event is sponsored by the Office of Marriage and Family Life.
To register call (316) 744-0167, or email slc@slcwichita.org or online at: slc.retreatportal.com.

Lenten Day of Reflection Feb. 22
A Lenten Day of Reflection will be held from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 22, at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita.
Father Jacob Carlin and Father J.D. Betzen, two of the diocese’s newly ordained priests, will give the reflections. Following their talks, there will be a celebration of Mass, luncheon, recitation of the rosary, and opportunities for the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
Registration is $10 per person and includes lunch. Call 316-744-0167 or email slc@slcwichita.org by Feb. 15 to reserve a spot.
The event is sponsored by the Office of Marriage and Family Life.

Eight week series for blended families begins March 12 at SLC
By Sharon Witzell

Blending a step family is one of the most difficult tasks for any Catholic family today.
The fact that the divorce rate is higher for second marriages suggests the difficulty involved in maintaining a second marriage. It involves combining two unique family histories, various personalities, traditions, relationships, and loyalties.
Later-life couples who remarry with adult children often mistakenly assume that because the children are out of the home that the family won’t have difficulty integrating. But, they have just as many adjustments and challenges to make as step-families with younger children. Learning the steps on how to merge two families increases the odds of marital success dramatically.
The Office of Marriage and Family Life is offering an eight-week series at the Spiritual Life Center to help blended families overcome potential problems. It will be presented from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Mondays March 12 through April 30.
Couples with step children or those contemplating marriage where step children will be part of the family, are encouraged to attend. The cost is $50 per couple or individual, which includes a book and participant guide. To register call 316-744-0167 or email slc@slcwichita.org.
Witzell is the program coordinator for Senior Adult Ministries for the Diocese of Wichita.

Bishop Kemme to lead spiritual preparation for Holy Week, March 23-25 at the SLC
The bishop of a diocese is the primary teacher of the faith. Bishop Carl A. Kemme assumes this role as he leads the faithful on the annual Palm Sunday Retreat at the Spiritual Life Center the weekend of March 23-25.
The annual retreat has become a popular Lenten activity for many of the faithful of the diocese. The entire center is set aside so that as many people as possible may attend.
Check-in begins at 6:30 p.m. Friday, March 23. The first conference with Bishop Kemme begins at 7:30. The retreat concludes Sunday after lunch.
In addition to conferences presented by the bishop throughout the weekend, there is time for group and individual prayer, solitude, rest, Stations of the Cross, Mass and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
The early bird rates for the retreat are $120 per person (double occupancy), or $145 per person (single occupancy), and includes a $50 non-refundable deposit. The registration deadline is Wednesday, March 21 but early bird rates end March 12.
Registration can be made online at www.SLCWichita.org. Registration by phone is available by calling the center at (316) 744-0167. As always, scholarships are available.

Father Hoisington presents about St. Peter Damian Feb. 21
Father Tom Hoisington will deliver a presentation about Saint Peter Damian on Wednesday, Feb. 21, at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita.
The program, part of the center’s “Dinner with the Doctors” series, includes a meal and pleasant conversation in the Main Assembly Room surrounded by a one-of-a-kind collection of icons depicting the doctors of the church. After the meal, participants will hear a presentation by Fr. Hoisington about Saint Peter Damian in commemoration of his feast day.
Want to learn more about this Doctor of the Church?
The cost for the evening is $15 per person. Dinner with the Doctors will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Spiritual Life Center on Monday, Aug. 28. Advance registration requested. To register, visit www.SLCwichita.org.

Fr. Van Haverbeke to lead retreat for those in their mid-life Feb. 24
Father Ken Van Haverbeke, who is 55 years old, will present a day-long retreat Saturday, Feb. 24, about mid-life spirituality at the Spiritual Life Center in Wichita.
There are many quotes and jokes about mid-life, but that time of life, an age defined as anywhere between 35 and 60, can be a grace-filled time where a person can review life and focus on what is important.
The U.S. bishops wrote about the mid-life spirituality of priests in a three-fold manner: the event, the temptations, and the graces. Using this three-fold approach, the retreat workshop will offer some understanding to this season of one’s life and possibly some spiritual responses.
“In the second half of our lives, we all have the opportunity to face our mortality and this brings up some daunting questions: What have I accomplished in my life? What do I have yet to accomplish? Does my life have meaning?” Father Van Haverbeke said.
“But mid-life can also be a time of ‘awakening’ which will involve reviewing what matters in life and perhaps questioning what beliefs and spiritual practices and concepts that don’t work anymore, and changing them.”
The retreat workshop on Feb. 24 will begin at 10 a.m. and end at 3 p.m. Along with the three conferences, there will be opportunity for the celebration of the Mass and the Sacrament of Confession.
The cost is $20. To register visit www.SLCWichita.org or call (316) 744-0167.

‘A Retreat in Bethany’ March 2-4
The Spiritual Life Center will again offer a unique retreat opportunity this Lent entitled “A Retreat in Bethany.”
“Holy week begins with the triumphant entry of Jesus into Jerusalem at the beginning of Palm Sunday Mass, and then moves quickly into Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday. What about the events between? What can we experience from them?” Father Ken Van Haverbeke, director of the Spiritual Life Center asks.
Scholars believe the Saturday before Holy Week Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and was with Mary, Martha, and Lazarus in Bethany. After the triumphant entry into Jerusalem, Jesus cleansed the Temple, preached, and gathered his apostles in Bethany, preparing for his final entry into Jerusalem as a prisoner to die.
Father Van Haverbeke, author of “The View From the Rectory Window” columns in the Catholic Advance, will lead the retreat. Beginning with the raising of Lazarus and culminating with the nocturnal accompaniment with Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, the retreat experience will prepare one for Holy Week.
“My idea,” Father Van Haverbeke says, “is to create an experience during this retreat – an understanding of what Peter, James, and John experienced prior to the passion and resurrection of Jesus.
“What did they see? What did they feel? How did the rising of Lazarus affect what they witnessed on Good Friday? How did the washing of the feet feel? This retreat will not be an intellectual exercise, but a prayerful experience of the days leading up to Good Friday and Easter Sunday.”
Want to go to ‘Bethany’?
The Retreat in Bethany is being offered Friday evening through Sunday, March 2-4. It begins at 7:30 p.m. Friday with the raising of Lazarus and concludes with Sunday Mass and lunch.
Space is limited. Regular retreat rates apply. Early bird rates end Monday, Feb. 19, so register soon. Reserve a spot by calling (316) 744-0167 or visit www.SLCwichita.org.

Youth and school news, February 16, 2018

Scouting committee accepting religious emblem applications
The Catholic Committee on Scouting is now accepting religious emblems applications for those youth who have completed the God is Love, Family of God, I Live My Faith, Marian Medal, Light of Christ, Parvuli Dei, Ad Altare Dei, and Pope Pius XII programs.
The cost is now $10 per application, which includes a professional photo taken at the annual Mass.
This year’s Mass is scheduled for 3 p.m. Sunday, June 10, at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Wichita.
Applications should be sent to Kathy Petr, 3128 Applewood, Wichita, 67220. If you have any questions, please contact Kathy Petr at 686-7893 or kpetr@cox.net.

Volunteers help make the Advance available to the blind

After the paper copies of the Catholic Advance have been marked up by the proofreader and a corrected version has been electronically transmitted to the printing house, the Ministry with Persons with Disabilities gets its turn to mark up the diocesan newspaper.
Myra Jacobs, who directs the ministry, and Molly Reichenberger, ministry secretary, break out their color markers to code copies of the newspaper for those who cannot read or find it difficult to read the printed Catholic Advance.
“It’s amazing – and a blessing – that so many people donate their time and talent so that their brothers and sisters in Christ can keep abreast of the activities of the diocese,” Jacobs said. “Those who take part in this ministry will never know how many people they’ve helped learn the good news of the diocese.”
The good news is shared via the Air Capital Telephone Reader Service that makes the Catholic Advance, Wichita Eagle, and other publications available to those with reading difficulties – at no charge.
There are about a dozen people who volunteer to read the Catholic Advance. About four are needed for each edition.
After Jacobs and Reichenberger code the Advance, copies of the Advance are delivered to the readers who log into the reading service and dictate the text from their personal telephones. The readers categorize the news according to how the the newspaper is coded so that those listening can choose among topics such as featured articles, columns, youth and school news, and several others. The Spanish language edition of the Catholic Advance is also recorded for the service.
Deanna Schottler of Wichita, said she’s helping the ministry because she once told Jacobs that if she ever needed help to contact her.
“She did,” Schottler said of her friend of 47 years. “I enjoy helping and learning about the diocese while reading.”
Another reader, who wished to remain anonymous, said he assists the ministry as a way of stewardship of time and talent. “I have glaucoma, which is being treated – so I should never lose my eyesight – but it makes me think about living in darkness.”
Kathy Mosley, a member of St. Thomas Aquinas Parish in Wichita, said she began reading for the ministry because her father lost significant vision when a retina detached in one eye and macular degeneration affected the other.
“He was rendered legally blind by the time he was 70 years old,” she said, adding that her brothers also suffer from detached retinas.
“While I have had tears in my retina which have been ‘repaired,’ she said, if her retinas become detached, she will be the fourth family member to have to cope with the condition.
“Vision is very precious to this family, as is my religion,” Mosley said, “performing this ministry is a natural fit for me.”
She said she couldn’t remember exactly how long she has been reading for the ministry but that her name is listed as one of the readers in an October 1998 article in the Catholic Advance with the headline: “Ministry garners U.S. award for taping Catholic Advance.”
Mosley remembers reading the Advance in a storage room at that time where she sat at a desk with a cassette recorder. There was only one reader at the time, she said, and it could take up to two hours to read the entire edition.
The cassette tapes were duplicated and mailed to subscribers to listen to the Catholic Advance. The recipients would mail the tapes back when they were finished, so the tapes could be reused.
“I am honored and grateful to be a part of this ministry and hope my eyes allow me to continue to read for many years to come,” she said.
Gerry Thompson, who’s been reading for the ministry for about four years, said he volunteers because readers can read from their own homes.
“I am blessed with the gift of sight, and what better way to thank God for this blessing than to share it with others who are blind or visually impaired,” he said.
The service provides recipients an opportunity to learn, to be informed, and to stay connected. “It is definitely part of the stewardship way of life,” Thompson said.
Maureen Gribben, said she is a reader because the Holy Spirit led her to the ministry. “I worked as a physical therapist with people of all ages and abilities my whole career,” she said. “I think this is why the Holy Spirit put the reader service on my heart.”
Lynne Schall said the ministry is a perfect fit for someone who has been reading aloud since she first learned how to read.
“I especially like the opportunity to read in my second language, Spanish,” she said, “and I look forward to recording many more articles.”
Gloria Rader reads the Advance, she said, because her son has Down Syndrome.
“Throughout his life, people have gone out of their way to make his life simpler and enriching,” she said. “Being a reader for those with special needs is a small way for me to do the same. It’s a privilege.”
Kim Decker said she began reading for the ministry when her youngest child was young and because she could do it at home, after her child went to bed.
“I have friends and former co-workers who are visually impaired and some of them use this service,” she said. “This is a great stewardship opportunity for anyone who needs something they can do from home!”
Steve Rohner said he sees reading the Catholic Advance for the ministry as an extension of his stewardship as a lector at Mass for St. Vincent de Paul Parish.
“I also see reading in both roles as an important part of my stewardship, areas in which I particularly enjoy participating,” he said.
Jean Hein said she enjoys reading and wanted a stewardship opportunity. Although she has some physical limitations that limit opportunities to serve, reading for the ministry is something she can do.
A female reader, who wishes to remain anonymous, said she reads the Advance because she has a brother who is blind and it gave her a way to assist him.
She said she promised her husband that she wouldn’t volunteer for anything after she retired from teaching at a Wichita Catholic school – except for reading the Advance for the blind.
“I can do that from home and I can use my God-given talent of a loud farm girl’s voice to do good,” she said.
Another teacher, Angie Etheredge, said because she’s an educator, she has no problem reading material for an audience.
“Reading for the Advance is a way that I can use my talents to help another person to get valuable Catholic information,” she said.

Want to subscribe to the service?
Those with reading difficulties who are interested in a free subscription to the Air Capital Telephone Reader Service are welcome to apply for access. To do so call, the Ministry with Persons with Disabilities at 316-269-3900.

Two diocesan groups fasting year-round

Fort Scott and Marion County participants connect via the internet
If there is one thing Americans relish, it’s their food: pizza, tacos, hamburgers and fries, not to mention the mountains of sweets that tempt them daily.
That makes it all the more difficult during Lent when most faithful Catholics are required to fast and abstain on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, and abstain from meat on all Fridays of Lent.
A group of about 30 men from several states – the Men of St. Michael – forego gastronomical gratification on Fridays year-round and other days of their choosing, in addition to the days mandated by the church.
Bryan Holt, a member of Mary Queen of Angels Parish in Fort Scott, said the idea of a group of men who would fast for spiritual reasons was suggested by Father Darrin May, who was pastor there from 2002 to 2012.
“He recommended it because of how good it was for the individual, but also for the Mystical Body of Christ,” Holt said last week.
He said he has long had an interest in building a community of men who assist each other spiritually, so he and a small group of men he associates with decided to follow their pastor’s advice.
The practice may be ancient but modern technology has made it easier.
“After a little while we started inviting other people to do it and started sending out emails as a reminder,” Holt said.
Several months later he was talking to one of the Men of St. Michael, a friend who lives in Texas, who recommended keeping a record of the group’s spiritual efforts and individual progress. The intent wasn’t to be a source of pride but to make the group’s efforts more concrete.
“We are certain that the sacrifices are being used by the Lord to help other people,” he said. “We don’t know how that works and we will never know until the end of time, or at the end of our lives, or however that works.”
He said in the last year he has been sending a recommended intention in his emails, although the individuals of the group may choose any intention they wish.
There are spiritual benefits to belonging to the group, he said.
One of the original members of the Men of St. Michael died after Christmas unexpectedly. “As a memorial to him I have been asking members to fast for the repose of his soul,” Holt said. “To me it gives our group more meaning.”
The tally of how many hours the men fast helps Holt understand better how the mystical body of Christ is working. About half of the members of the group remember to email the number of hours they fasted to Holt. Since he began keeping track in 2013, the group has reported 51,000 hours.
“God can do a lot with just one hour,” he said.
In 2012, when Father May was assigned to Holy Family Parish, made up of the faithful in Florence, Marion, Pilsen, and Tampa, he didn’t leave his zeal for fasting in Fort Scott.
That resulted in the formation of an organized parish fasting effort, Hungry for Christ, coordinated by Denice Bina of Marion.
“It is basically a support group, we support each other in offering our prayers through fasting for intentions of the parish – and just all kinds of intentions,” she said last week.
Some may find fasting difficult, Bina said, but the practice is mentioned in the Bible as a method for spiritual improvement over 70 times.
“One of my daughters actually challenged the women in our family to take turns through the month on a Friday to fast for our family. So, that’s how we started three or four years ago.”
When the parish decided to start the fasting support group, Bina said, she found more strength to fast.
“I don’t want to say fasting is rewarding – I don’t know if that’s the right term,” she said. “It is fulfilling. It deepens the prayer life…it makes it more meaningful.”
Our culture is one that focuses on instant gratification, she said.
“We hardly deny ourselves anything, let alone food. God’s grace pours into you when you offer that sacrifice to help you do it, to give you the strength to do it.”

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