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July 20, 2006 Edition

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This week:
Breaking News: Archbishop Cordes to speak in Madison (posted 7/20/2006)
Madison delegation: To pay return visit to Ghana
Hispanic ministry: New staff in diocese
Plea agreement: Reached in cathedral arson case
• Front page: Catholic Herald summer publication schedule
News Briefs
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Articles on St. Raphael Cathedral

News Briefs:
Highland Catholic community to build new church facility

HIGHLAND -- The Catholic community of Highland is hoping to celebrate Christmas 2007 in their new SS. Anthony and Philip Church. Since St. Anthony Church burned to the ground on April 17, 2002, the Catholic community has united toward building a new church facility.

Already the parish has gathered roughly $3 million, yet $1.5 million remains for the new facility to become a reality. The Catholic community has undertaken a capital campaign to meet this challenge.

The new church facility has been designed to provide for worship, education, administrative, and fellowship needs of the present-day congregation, as well as anticipated future growth. The worship space can accommodate 600 with an adjacent gathering space for welcoming and hospitality.

Multi-function rooms will handle K-12 religious education classes, adult study groups, and parish meetings. The large social hall can serve a variety of events. The facility to be built on the parish center site on Main St. will provide parking and will be entirely handicapped accessible.

A ground-breaking ceremony with Bishop Robert C. Morlino will be held Sunday, Aug. 6, at a parish picnic starting at 4 p.m.

Send donations for the capital campaign to: SS. Anthony and Philip Parish, P.O. Box 306, Highland, WI 53543-0306.

Truman parish to mark 150th anniversary

TRUMAN -- Immaculate Conception Parish is celebrating its sesquicentennial anniversary with a Mass celebrated by Bishop Robert C. Morlino at 11 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 13.

Former parishioners and friends of the parish are cordially invited to return. There will be a catered dinner hosted by the Altar Society at 12:30 p.m. The dinner is complimentary, but reservations are required. Make a reservation by contacting Mary Leahy at 608-762-5200.

Former priests and pastors are welcomed back to concelebrate the liturgy. Contact Fr. Robinson if interested.

A 150th Anniversary Booklet of the parish history with lots of photos will be available for purchase. Also, the History of the Parish Cemetery will be available.

All are welcome to this joyful celebration.

JustFaith workshop
to be held at Nativity
of Mary, Janesville

JANESVILLE -- A JustFaith introductory workshop will be hosted by Nativity of Mary Parish in Janesville on Saturday, July 26, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

JustFaith explores the Biblical tradition, the historic witness of the church, Catholic social teaching, and the relationship between spirituality and justice. Partnering with the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, Catholic Charities USA, and Catholic Relief Services, JustFaith mingles real life situations with Catholic teaching, making the teachings real.

This workshop is sponsored by the Office of Justice and Pastoral Outreach of the Diocese of Madison to encourage people to find ways they can make positive changes in their own communities.

The cost is $15, which includes lunch. By attending the introductory workshop, no commitment is made to the whole program. It is intended to start the conversation in parishes to build a commitment to help others.

The workshop covers the theological tradition on which JustFaith is based, stories of the impact of JustFaith, and instructions on how parishes can implement the program. It's not too late to register for the workshop, which will be given by Daniel W. Driscoll.

For more information, call Kari Rezin, Justice and Pastoral Outreach intern, at 608-821-3086, or e-mail or send your name and contact information, along with a check for $15 to the Diocese of Madison to Office of Justice and Pastoral Outreach, P. O. Box 44983, Madison, WI 53744-4983.

To learn more about JustFaith, visit

Blood drive in Baraboo: Donors needed for stable blood supply

BARABOO -- Keeping a stable blood supply is very challenging during the summer months. An opportunity to help patients in need is provided at the St. Clare Hospital blood drive on Friday, July 21, from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

There is a special need for type O negative and type B negative blood donations. For an appointment, call Peggy Collar at 608-356-1419.

In order to ensure a stable blood supply this summer, the Red Cross is asking people to spend one of the 2,090 hours in their summer giving blood. Donors are also encouraged to bring a friend to donate with them.

"We have found that one of the most common reasons people give for not donating blood is that they simply haven't been asked," said Tony Procaccio, CEO of the local Badger-Hawkeye Blood Services Region. "This summer it is our hope that no one will be able to use this excuse. We are encouraging all loyal and first-time donors to come in and bring a friend."

A blood donor card or driver's license or two other forms of ID are required at check-in. All blood types are needed. Call 1-800-448-3543 or visit for more information.

Donors must be at least 17 years old and weigh 110 pounds or more. It isn't necessary for donors to know their blood type to donate.

St. Aloysius Bible School

SAUK CITY -- This year St. Aloysius Parish in Sauk City has chosen "Fiesta, on fire for Jesus" as its Vacation Bible School theme.

Children who have completed three year pre-kindergarten to grade five may register. The program runs for five days, Monday through Friday on August 7 to 11 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at a cost of $15 per child or $40 per family maximum.

At this year's Fiesta, participants will assemble for large group activities that will include singing and dancing in celebration of God's love for all. Organizers hope Fiesta will give the children a wonderful experience of fun and faith this summer.

Participants will have the opportunity to make new friends while learning about Jesus.

Contact Vacation Bible School director Sarah for registration forms or with any questions at 608-643-4062.

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Breaking News ...

Archbishop Cordes
to speak in Madison

-- Posted: 7/20/2006, 6:12 p.m. Central Time
-- Updated: 8/8/2006, 11:27 p.m. Central Time

MADISON -- Archbishop Paul Josef Cordes, President of the Vatican agency, Cor Unum, which oversees the Pope's ministry of charity, will address those gathered in Madison on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2006.

Archbishop Cordes was a close collaborator of Pope Benedict XVI in the preparation of his first papal encyclical Deus Caritas Est ("God is Love"). The Archbishop's speech will center on the Pope's encyclical in order to promote and encourage further study and reflection and to put the truth and direction found therein into practice. He will focus on what is the authentic motivation behind charitable works to promote human solidarity. Madison is the first of a three-city United States tour, where Archbishop Cordes will address this topic. He will also be speaking in Detroit, Mich., and Washington, D.C.

The speech in Madison will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Capitol Theatre in the Madison Overture Center. General public tickets will be made available on August 28 through Catholic Charities, 608-821-3100.

Most Reverend Robert C. Morlino, Bishop of Madison, commented that "the State of Wisconsin, City of Madison, and most especially the Diocese is honored to have one the world's foremost theologians choose Madison as one of his three stops in the United States. He comes to us in the name of the Holy Father. I pray that, as a community and as a Church, we will welcome the Archbishop and be open to the truth of Christ which he comes to share with us."

Cor Unum is a pontifical council, established in 1971 in accord with the Second Vatican Council's reflections on the Church in the Modern World. This Office of the Holy See is charged with the concrete realization of the charitable intentions of the Pope. In naming the Pontifical Council, Pope Paul VI stated, we are "one heart, a heart that beats in rhythm with the heart of Christ, whose pity for the hungry multitudes reaches them even in their spiritual hunger."

And in 1984 Pope John Paul II remarked about Cor Unum that "You are in a certain sense the eye that spots the multiple 'poverties'. You are the heart that has compassion and wants to do for the other who is in need, what one would wish for oneself. You are the hand that is stretched out fraternally and gives practical help." Now, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI has chosen to provide an updated doctrinal context for the charitable activity of the Church as a major part of the Encyclical. Archbishop Cordes is looking forward to this occasion as an opportunity to offer theological insights based upon the close involvement of his Vatican Office with the historical evolution of the document.

Archbishop Paul Josef Cordes was appointed President of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, on December 2, 1995, by Pope John Paul II, to oversee the Dicastery of the Holy See responsible for questions concerning Ecclesial Charity and the promotion of human and Christian development.

During his tenure as President he has been responsible for the Church's direct response to natural disasters such as the recent hurricanes in the Gulf Coast of the United States, and the 2004 tsunami in South Asia and Eastern Africa, as well as many other humanitarian efforts around the world. He has been a frequent visitor to those who suffer the effects of violence in Iraq.

The Archbishop is also a Member of the Congregation for Clergy, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, and the Pontifical Commission for Latin America. Prior to serving as President of Cor Unum, Archbishop Cordes served as Vice President of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, as an Auxiliary Bishop of Paderborn, Germany, and before that as a priest of the Archdiocese of Paderborn, where he was ordained in 1961.

He did theological studies in both Germany and France, collaborating with Karl Rahner, Henri de Lubac, and Yves Congar. He completed his doctoral work at the University of Mainz where his dissertation focused on the Ministerial Priesthood, based on the document of the Second Vatican Council "On the Life and Ministry of Priests".

Background Information
on Encyclical Deus Caritas Est

The Encyclical provides new elucidations on the Christian understanding of love and the concrete realization of this love through charitable works, and has been very well-received both inside and outside the Catholic Church. Indeed, this "love of neighbor" in charity - diakonia - is an essential element of the Church's mission in the world, comprising one of its three principal dimensions along with leiturgia (worship) and martyria (witness). The New York Times described the Encyclical as "an erudite meditation on love . . . that presented Catholicism's potential for good. . .", noting that, ". . . in gentle, often poetic language, Benedict nonetheless portrayed a tough-minded church 'duty-bound'," he wrote, "to intervene at times in secular politics for 'the attainment for what is just'." (Jan. 25, 2006)

Thus, the Pope's encyclical, Deus Caritas Est, goes to the very center of what Christians believe, that "God is Love." This core belief is the springboard which leads to the answers of questions posed by each and every one of us, Catholic or not, such as: Why are we here? And what is the meaning and purpose of life?

The Pope begins the encyclical with the simple, but all-encompassing, statement that he wishes "to speak of the love which God lavishes upon us and which we in turn must share with others." The letter is therefore, first and foremost a meditation on divine love (agape) and our response to it. The Holy Father reflects on the different forms of human love, and argues that even in its most natural form (eros) it is an image of divine love.

The encyclical goes on to explain that human love (eros) and divine love (agape) are not the same, but that they are not completely separable either. Eros has, in the person of Christ, been "supremely ennobled, yet at the same time is so purified as to become one with agape." He develops how eros has been understood throughout history and how eros has been transformed and purified by Jesus Christ, by His taking on our humanity. He doesn't shy away from the fact that throughout history, and even in our modern culture, the term "love" has been reduced to sexual behavior and therefore become a "commodity" or "material" good to be used for personal pleasure. But this is not the entire point of this encyclical. It is about how our human love should reflect God's love, which is free, total, faithful, and fruitful.

The second half of the encyclical, which has not gotten as much attention as the first, is focused on how love is supposed to be embodied in the daily life of Christians - in our love of (and service to) our neighbor, and what that entails in light of our faith. This free return of love to God, through love of neighbor (charity), completes the evolution/fulfillment of human love to image the love of God, and become a unity of natural eros, agape, and ultimately charity. He adds that the charitable mission of the Christian and the Church is informed by the belief that human love and divine love are inseparable. Because of this, believers and nonbelievers are able to work together to fight injustices and poverty.

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Madison delegation:
To pay return visit to Ghana

MADISON -- Eight people from around the Diocese of Madison will soon cross an ocean to return a visit paid by a delegation from the diocese's sister diocese last year.

The delegation will leave Madison Sunday, July 23, and will return Friday, Aug. 4. This is the third delegation to be sent from the Diocese of Madison to the Diocese of Navrongo-Bolgatanga. A delegation from Ghana visited Madison in fall 2005.

Among other activities, the eight will take a tour of Kwapa Kokoo, the fair trade chocolate cooperative, meet with Bishop Lucas Abadamoora of the diocese of Navrongo-Bolgatanga, see first-hand the benefits of the Donkey Project by meeting some of the beneficiaries, and travel to different parishes to meet parishioners.

This delegation "will continue to build relationships with people," said Ben Weisse, associate director of the Office of Justice and Pastoral Outreach and coordinator of the Global Solidarity Project, begun in 2002 under the auspices of Catholic Relief Services. It will also further some of the other projects the dioceses are working on, such as pen pals, the Donkey Project, and other elements.

Exchanging stories

Patti Sensenbrenner, of St. Albert Parish, Sun Prairie, where she was a former director of adult faith formation, says she expects to enjoy the experience. She is a hobby storyteller, and when applying for the delegation, thought, "Hey, I would love to go and hear their stories and take stories to them, and then bring their stories back," she said.

Sensenbrenner has recently finished the JustFaith process, a Catholic ministry program that works to empower people and expand commitment to social ministry within faith communities. "It's the whole idea of partnership and solidarity and being on an equal basis, that we all are one," she said.

She hopes to bring that idea of family with her. "Just to help in some small way, to bring the idea of the human family as all one to people who don't have opportunities to meet that hospitality, that portion of the human family," Sensenbrenner said.

The only things she worries about are insect bites and being sick. "I want to be alert and aware and be able to hear and see the things that are important," she said.

Meet face-to-face

Clarence Mougin, a parishioner at St. Norbert Parish, Roxbury, and two-time delegate in 2002 and 2004, has been helping the delegates prepare for the experience.

On the trip, he said, "you get to see other Catholics face to face and learn how they live and what their plights are in life. You find they have a genuine interest in us.

"They're very much happy someone will travel halfway around the world to meet them," he said.

As to what to expect in Ghana, the delegation will find the total opposite of the weather here, Mougin said. As it's the wet season, there should be rain, everything green and beautiful, and everyone working in the fields.

His advice for the group: "Wear a hat and get out of the sun as much as you can. People are very gracious, and will get you into a shady spot soon."

The other delegates going to Ghana are Jessica Brey and Santo Carfora, both of Nativity of Mary Parish, Janesville; Denise and Dale Breuer, St. John the Baptist Parish, Jefferson; Eric Schiedermayer, executive secretary of the Diocesan Office of Evangelization and Catechesis and parishioner at Blessed Sacrament Parish, Madison; Susan Volz Nett, St. Ann Parish, Stoughton; and Brittany Wendt, also of St. Ann Parish, whose story can be found on Page 14 [print edition only].

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Hispanic ministry: New staff in diocese

en Español

MADISON -- Two new staff members have been hired to work in Hispanic ministry in the Diocese of Madison: Fr. Manuel Méndez and Alberto Porras.

According to Susanna Herro, director of the diocesan Office of Justice and Pastoral Outreach, "Hispanic Ministry will be enlivened with the gifts Alberto Porras and Father Méndez bring to our diocese. Their experience will offer a new dynamic to the ministry, which has been carried on with great care and concern by Fr. Mick Moon, who will now be serving at St. Rose of Lima in Brodhead and St. Patrick in Albany.

"Fr. Moon will continue to assist Hispanic ministry," said Herro. "I'm very much looking forward to the expanded team to reach out to the many Hispanics in the diocese."

Father Méndez is a diocesan priest originally from Campeche, Mexico. He has spent seven years in the United States, including three years in the state of Washington and most recently three years in the Diocese of Rockford, Ill.

He will live at St. Joseph Parish in Madison and will provide services in the Madison area and throughout the diocese.

"I am happy to be here with many hopes for ministry for all people," he said. He is looking forward to celebrating Mass and bringing the sacraments to the people, including hearing Confessions in Spanish.

Porras, a native of Costa Rica, has also been in the United States seven years. He is married and has three daughters. He and his family belong to Blessed Sacrament Parish in Madison.

Porras has a law degree from the University of Costa Rica. He worked as a public defender, prosecutor, and criminal judge there for 10 years. He also has a doctoral in international criminal procedures and a master's degree in U. S. legal institutions from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

He will serve as director of Centro Pastoral Guadalupano at the Catholic Multicultural Center and also work at the Bishop O'Connor Center. His legal background will be especially helpful in assisting with immigration issues.

"It will be a position where I can do a lot of good things for the church and the community," said Porras.

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Plea agreement:
Reached in cathedral arson case

MADISON -- The man accused of burning down St. Raphael Cathedral has admitted responsibility for the fire that destroyed the 150-year-old building on March 14, 2005.

More articles on
St. Raphael Cathedral

William J. Connell, 42, pleaded no contest to arson July 5 in a plea agreement between Public Defender Rhoda Ricciardi and Assistant District Attorney Jac Heitz. Under the agreement, a burglary charge for breaking into the church, as well as two misdemeanor charges, were dismissed but can be considered in his sentencing.

Connell was arrested and charged after calling police the day after the fire. He told an officer "It was me" and admitted to breaking into the church.

He underwent treatment after being declared incompetent to stand trial last year.

Both Bishop Robert C. Morlino and Msgr. Paul J. Swain, vicar general of the Diocese of Madison and rector of the cathedral, visited Connell recently at the Dane County Jail. They assured him of their forgiveness and the forgiveness of the people of St. Raphael Cathedral Parish and of their continued prayers for him.

After his condition improved earlier this year Connell had been scheduled to stand trial beginning July 24, but the plea agreement was reached.

According to the Wisconsin State Journal, Circuit Judge Steven Ebert will sentence Connell in about two months. Connell faces up to 25 years in prison and 15 years of extended supervision for the arson conviction.

"We are pleased that Mr. Connell has received the support he needed to begin to move forward with his life, as challenging as that will be," Monsignor Swain said.

"We are also grateful that the criminal aspect of this sad experience is moving to a conclusion. It will allow all of us to look to the future with joyful anticipation of a new Cathedral," he said.

The fire set by Connell demolished the 150-year-old building at 222 W. Main St., destroying its interior and roof. In this week's column, Bishop Morlino says he has not reached a final decision regarding the cathedral.

For more on the cathedral decision and Bishop Morlino's and Monsignor Swain's visit with Connell, see the bishop's column on Page 3 [online here].

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Diocese of Madison, The Catholic Herald
Offices: Bishop O'Connor Catholic Pastoral Center, 702 S. High Point Road, Madison
Mailing address: P.O. Box 44985, Madison, WI 53744-4985
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