Bulletin (August 12, 2001)

As I mentioned in last week’s bulletin, from August 9-12 I am attending the National Courage Conference at Mundelein Seminary in Chicago. I want to take this opportunity to share with you a bit more about this movement which has helped so many young men and women.

Founded in 1980 by Cardinal Cooke, Courage is a spiritual support group for men and women striving to live chaste lives in accordance with the Catholic Church's Pastoral Teaching on Homosexuality.

What makes Courage different from other ministries is the radical change in one's way of thinking, willing and acting. Courage members accept completely the teachings of the Church and through the help of the Sacraments, prayer and meditation, one can achieve interior chastity. The Catholic Church is with those who want help dealing with this issue.

Members created the following five goals of Courage when Courage was founded. The goals are read at the start of each meeting and practiced by every member in daily life.

1. Live chaste lives in accordance with the Roman Catholic Church's teaching on homosexuality. (Chastity)

2. Dedicate ones life to Christ through service to others, spiritual reading, prayer, meditation, individual spiritual direction, frequent attendance at Mass, and the frequent reception of the sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist. (Prayer and Dedication)

3. Foster a spirit of fellowship in which all may share thoughts and experiences, and so ensure that no one will have to face the problems of homosexuality alone. (Fellowship)

4. Be mindful of the truth that chaste friendships are not only possible but necessary in a chaste Christian life and in doing so provide encouragement to one another in forming and sustaining them. (Support)

5. Live lives that may serve as good examples to others. (Good Example)

The goals of Courage are something that all of us can strive for – whether single or married. As stated previously, I have found great inspiration and encouragment from the Courage members who meet weekly at our parish. I hope that attendance at the national conference will enable me to be a better chaplain – and to assist other young men and women who are struggling with these issues.

I want to thank Fr. Denis Wilde, O.S.A. for being at Holy Family this weekend. I know parishioners here will receive him well and support the important work of Priests for Life.

Also I wish to thank those who turned in nominations or nominated themselves for the new parish council which we will be forming during the month of September. There is still one more Sunday to make known someone who you feel would be a good candidate. With the help of Rob Van Tassell and Alicia Martinez who are consultants from the Archdiocesan Planning Office, we will be doing strategic planning for Holy Family Parish. This will involve evaluation of our parish needs and the establishment of goals. The parish council will be the key consultative body in carrying out this task.

One final reminder: This Wednesday is the Feast of the Assumption – a Holy Day of Obligation. Masses will be at 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. in English, 7:30 p.m. in Spanish. The evening before there will be a special gathering at 6 p.m. for those participating in Eucharistic Adoration. It will involve a pot luck supper and a program to encourage and better organize the Apostolate of Perpetual Adoration in our parish.