MADISON -- The theme for this year’s Diocesan Men’s Retreat (March 4 to 5) is taken from Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical, Caritas in Veritate (Charity in Truth).
In his encyclical, Pope Benedict explains the inseparable relationship between charity (the heart of the Church’s social doctrine) and truth (the light that gives meaning and value to charity).
He counters materialism with a perspective of eternal life; consumerism with gratuitous giving; secularism and rationalism with faith; and a growing reliance on technology for man’s answers with a foundation in moral responsibility.
It’s a sweeping review of the dangers to society and of the remedies found in faith and Church.
Because of its breadth and importance to society, Caritas in Veritate should be studied; its truths, shared and lived.
Accordingly, the Knights of Divine Mercy (KDM) invites all interested persons, men and women alike, to its Caritas in Veritate study group. Men may attend this group as preparation for their retreat, but this is not a requirement.
On three Mondays, Feb. 7, 21, and 28, participants will meet at the Bishop O’Connor Center, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Each Monday, a different instructor will teach two chapters of the encyclical. To teach an encyclical of this magnitude, KDM has put the A-team into the lineup:
Constance Nielsen, development director for St. Ambrose Academy, holds an MA and PhD in Religious Studies and specializes in ethics and in the Church’s social teaching. A former theology teacher at Marquette University, she will set the stage for the series by teaching the encyclical’s introduction and the first two chapters:
• The Message of Populorum Progressio
• Human Development in Our Time
Msgr. Charles Schluter is the pastor of St. Peter Parish, Madison, and director of the Office of Continuing Education for Clergy of the Diocese of Madison. In addition to serving as a pastor for almost 33 years, Monsignor Schluter taught at Holy Name Seminary, served as chairman of the Presbyteral Council, as the diocesan archivist, and as a committee member on the diocesan golden jubilee.
The scope of Monsignor Schluter’s class includes the next two chapters:
• Fraternity, Economic Development, and Civil Society
• The Development of People, Rights and Duties, the Environment
Fr. Randy Timmerman, pastor of St. John Vianney Parish, Janesville, was ordained in 1993. Father Timmerman served as spiritual director for the diocesan TEC Program, as a member of the diocesan RCIA Committee, and on the Board of Conciliation and Arbitration. He received his Doctorate in Ministry from the University of St. Mary of the Lake, Mun-delein, Ill., in 2003. Both Father Timmerman and Constance Nielsen are on the Seat of Wisdom Diocesan Institute faculty.
Father Timmerman will conclude our study with these chapters:
• The Cooperation of the Human Family
• The Development of Peoples and Technology
KDM offers this study group at no charge. Participants may purchase the encyclical in book form at the first meeting or download and print it from www.vatican.va
People are asked to pre-register by calling 608-994-2818 or 608-798-3612.