Bulletin (January 25, 2009)

This weekend we initiate Catholic Schools Week. Our principal, Mr. Frank Cantwell, will speak at the end of the English, Spanish and Filipino Masses – and will be available to answer questions about our parish school. The two-bit collection goes to the Randy Terlicker Fund, so important to the present and future of Holy Family School. Again, Randy’s mom, Mrs. Colleen Terlicker, will match all donations, dollar for dollar.

Last Tuesday I accompanied our seventh and eighth grade students to the annual March for Life in Olympia. With everything happening that day (above all, the inauguration of our new president) I expected the turnout to be down. Just the opposite: the Mass, celebrated by Bishop Joseph Tyson, was packed. At noon a huge crowd filled the Capitol steps to listen to Democratic and Republican legislators speak about pro-life issues.

(For other pictures see: March for Life 2009)

In his homily, Bishop Tyson emphasized the parallels between the Civil Rights and Pro-Life movements. Both have the goal of promoting equality for all members of our society and removing barriers to discrimination based on superficial differences. In the case of Civil Rights, the superficial difference is skin color; in the case of the Pro-Life movement, the superficial differences are size and location (inside or outside the mother’s womb). Regarding the Right to Life, Bishop Tyson referred to the Inaugural Address, where president Obama spoke eloquently about “that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.” May we recognize that “all” includes our unborn brothers and sisters.

There was a small group of counter-protestors, which was good in the sense that they enabled people to see the arguments on the other side. The next day I talked with our students about how some of these arguments are based on euphemisms – the substitution of pleasant phrases to avoid talking about unpleasant realities. Instead of saying “abortion” or “killing an unborn child,” they used phrases like “reproductive freedom” or “a woman’s right to choose.” We compared these to other euphemisms employed to cover up terrible evils: “Final Solution” or “Special Treatment” for the murder of European Jews, “enhanced interrogation” for torture by simulating drowning and in the early history of the United States, “our peculiar institution” as a way of avoiding the word “slavery.”

We have another example of euphemism in the proposed “Freedom of Choice Act” (FOCA). This sweeping bill would rob states of their freedom to enact even the most modest laws regarding abortion. For example, many states have extended Informed Consent to include abortion. This does not prohibit abortion, but ensures that a woman is given adequate information on what the abortion procedure involves and its possible harmful consequences to her physical and emotional health. Even European countries have this sensible requirement to help a person before making that irrevocable decision. FOCA would overturn such modest measures enacted by state legislatures. And it could have more far-reaching effects, forcing physicians and hospitals to participate in abortions against their consciences. The U.S. bishops have made it clear they would close Catholic hospitals rather than acquiesce to such a violation. Please God, may it not come down to those alternatives. For that reason, our bishops are asking us to fill out a post card opposing the imposition of FOCA and sending it to our representatives.

This struggle is not so much political as spiritual. Because we are in a spiritual battle, we will again recite the prayer to St. Michael the Archangel, asking his protection for our children, families, parish – and nation. Also, I ask you to stay informed by subscribing to our diocesan paper, the Catholic Northwest Progress. As an incentive, we will receive ten dollars for every new or renewed subscription. Also, I request that you put some important events on your calendar: For all liturgical ministers, we will have a workshop on March 7. On March 31 Dr. Tom Curran will give a presentation on the meaning of the Mass. And on April 19 Fr. Frank Pavone will visit Holy Family Parish. In subsequent bulletins I will give more information about Dr. Curran and Fr. Pavone. These dynamic speakers will greatly bless our parish.

Also, I would like to invite all parishioners to an important meeting this Thursday, January 29 from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. in the upstairs school hall. We will be presenting our new Stewardship Plan, which is the culmination of the last year’s work of the Parish Council. This has been done at the request of the Archbishop, who asked that all parishes take a year to discern their goals as a Stewardship parish and to develop a comprehensive plan to educate the faithful on genuine Christian Stewardship. Our plan not only covers Stewardship teaching, but also lays outs seven objectives with accompanying goals for our parish. These goals touch on virtually all areas of ministry within our parish, from our hospitality and community building efforts to education and formation, ministry development and service, and our financial commitments and accountability. At this meeting, you will have the opportunity to give input regarding these goals and implementation of the plan in all these areas. It is vital that we have a common vision within our parish regarding our Stewardship. Your input is valuable to me, and I ask that you make every effort to attend this meeting.

Este domingo les pido de participar en la Campaña de Tarjetas de parte de parte de nuestros obispos en relacion a FOCA: Libertad del Acto de Elección (FOCA por sus siglas en inglés) es la legislación del aborto más radical en la historia de los Estados Unidos. Está propuesta por el grupo en favor del aborto como simplemente la codificación de la decisión 1973 de la Corte Suprema en el caso Roe vs. Wade. ¡Pero es mucho más que eso!

De hecho, FOCA va mucho más alla del caso Roe vs. Wade: • FOCA propondría el aborto no sólo como algo legal, sino como un derecho fundamental, así como el derecho a votar y el derecho a la libertad de expresión.

• FOCA invalidará las leyes para proteger a la mujer de las clínicas de aborto inseguras y de las leyes que le aseguren informarse acerca del aborto. • FOCA requerirá que los pagadores de impuestos (es decir, todos) paguen por los abortos.

• FOCA retirará todas y cada una de las prohibiciones en la práctica barbárica de los abortos de nacimiento parcial y requerirá que los estados permitan los abortos de nacimiento parcial y otros abortos de término posterior.

• FOCA requerirá que los estados permitan los abortos a manos de personal no-médicos, con tal que aseguren un procedimiento médicamente seguro.

• FOCA negará a los padres la oportunidad de involucrarse en la decisión de abortar de su hija menor de edad.

• FOCA impedirá las leyes que protegen el derecho a la objeción al aborto de manera consciente.

• En su declaración a nombre de los obispos americanos, el Cardenal Francis George, presidente de la USCCB, dijo que FOCA tendría "un efecto destructivo sobre la libertad de conciencia de los doctores, las enfermeras y los trabajadores en el cuidado de la salud cuya convicción personal no les permite cooperar en el asesinato privado de niños nonatos."

• FOCA sería una amenaza directa para la existencia misma de los hospitales católicos.

Favor de llenar una tarjeta este domingo expresando su oposicion a FOCA.

Tambien quisiera invitarles a participar en una presentacion especial este jueves, 7:00 a 8:30 p.m., en el salon de la escuela. El Consejo Parroquial ha trabajado conmigo por mas de un año para formular el Plan de Co-Respsonabilidad. El dia jueves lo presentaré e invitaré su participación. Gracias

Stewardship Reflection:

Today’s readings highlight the importance of conversion as a Christian. Being a Steward of Providence is part of this same conversion. Many people know what they should do, but don’t follow through with corresponding actions. True conversion involves much more than knowledge. It’s about learning the way we should act and developing the will to act in the right way.

Faith and Finances with Phil Lenahan © – www.VeritasFinancialMinistries.com

Parish Stewardship Giving Summary
Wk. 29 of Fiscal Year (July 6, 2008 – January 18, 2009)

Amt. Needed 1st Collection Each Sunday:	$ 14,100.00
Jan. 18 Check/Cash Envelope:	$   6,847.25
Jan. 18 EFT (Automatic Deduction):	$   1,054.88    
Jan. 18 Loose Cash:			$   3,039.36  
January 18 Total Offering:			$ 10,941.49
Weekly Income Difference:		       (-)	$   3,158.51

Fiscal Year to Date
Goal 1st Collection FY to Date:		$408,900.00  
Collected 1st Collection FY to Date:		$335,318.89
Difference 1st Collection FY to Date:     (-) $  73,581.11   

Some of the Gifts from the Other Half of our Stewardship
Second Collection: SVDP/Madre Teresa:	$   1,769.48

For on-line donations to parish or school: www.HFSeattle.org  
For on-line donations to the Annual Catholic Appeal: http://www.seattlearch.org/ACA													


Julio Montenegro and Freddy de los Santos