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January 17, 2008 Edition

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This week:
Breaking News (front page) -- Jan. 17 Trusting in the Spirit sessions rescheduled
Walk to Capitol Hill is still the top March for Life event
St. Ambrose students to attend march
Diocesan Criteria and Parish Accountability
News Briefs
Nominate someone for a profile

Articles on St. Raphael Cathedral

News Briefs:
Catholic Men's Conference

MILWAUKEE -- All men aged 14 and up are invited to take part in "Men of Christ," the largest Midwest Catholic men's conference.

The conference will feature Archbishop Timothy Dolan and newly ordained Bishop William Callahan, as well as music and speakers, including Fr. Rick Heilman of the Diocese of Madison.

The conference will take place Saturday, Feb. 23, from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. with on-site registration opening at 6:30 a.m. at the Wisconsin Expo Center at State Fair Park in Milwaukee.

Register in advance by calling 414-297-9729 or go to  Cost is $40 until January 25, $50 from January 26 to February 18, and $60 after February 18. Student discounts are available and religious may attend free. Cost includes lunch.

AV materials to borrow

MADISON -- The Audio-Visual Library in the Office of Evangelization and Catechesis is promoting the use of its collection of videos by offering to lend a few of its recent acquisitions free of charge to parishioners in the diocese.

Beginning in February and running through the end of May, parishioners may borrow the DVDs in Jeff Cavins' series The Great Bible Adventure or Stephen Ray's series The Footprints of God for home use. The borrower will be responsible for paying the return postage, and must return the material by the due date so it will be available for others, or a late fee will be assessed.

Contact the AV librarian for more details or to schedule a viewing, at 608-821-3152 or

Rosary for
Bishop Morlino

MADISON -- Catholics in the Diocese of Madison are participating in a gift of prayer for Bishop Robert C. Morlino - at least one rosary will be prayed for the bishop every day through New Year's Day 2009. To sign up, participants choose one day of the month. They then pray one rosary on the day picked, each month, for the bishop and for his intentions, until New Year's Day 2009.

To sign up or renew a 2007 commitment, go to

Talk on Christian peacemaking

MADISON -- On Thursday, Jan. 24, from 6:30 to 8 p.m., Cassandra Dixon will present a talk on "Christian Peacemaking in Palestine/Israel" in the Lake Room, Regina Hall, Edgewood College, 1000 Edgewood College Dr.

Dedicated to the use of creative nonviolence in conflict situations, Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) have worked in the West Bank city of Hebron since 1995 and the village of Tuwani since 2004. Dixon, a volunteer with CPT for three years, will share her experience with a team last spring.

The teams accompany Palestinian school children, teachers, shepherds, and farming families subject to violence from Israeli settlers and the military.

Cosmetic medicine

MONROE -- Monroe Clinic and Family Practice Physician Dr. Lara Salyer will present "Turn Back Time, Renew Your Beauty," a community workshop to help attendees understand options in cosmetic medicine available at Monroe Clinic.

On Thursday, Jan. 24, the workshop will be presented in the Patient Education Room of Monroe Clinic-Brodhead, 1904 First Center Ave., at 6 p.m. The public is invited to this free event. Space is limited and registration is required. Call 1-877-865-1462 or visit and click on "Classes and Events."

Brewers' catcher
at Theology on Tap

MADISON -- Vinny Rottino, Milwaukee Brewers catcher and Racine native, will present "Welcome to the Big Leagues" on Thursday, Jan. 17, from 7 to 9 p.m. for January's Theology on Tap geared to young adults at the Essen Haus, 508 E. Wilson St. For more information, visit

ConQuest offers new Lenten calendar

MADISON -- The Madison ConQuest Boys Club is offering a new 2008 Lenten Calendar to help "prepare your heart for Easter." It offers daily challenging resolutions, a full set of stickers to help mark progress and extra stickers to mark fasting and abstinence, space for daily intentions, and beautiful inspiring images.

The calendars, $7 for each, can be ordered by contacting Andy Galvin at

ConQuest is a national network of leadership clubs for boys, five to 16. The program is designed to produce mature young men who live their Catholic faith authentically. For more information on the club, go to or e-mail

Nominate someone
for a profile

Do you know a person to nominate for a profile? This could be someone in a paid or volunteer position in the Catholic Church. It could be someone working outside the Church who lives his or her faith in ordinary or extraordinary ways in daily life.

Send nominations with information about the nominee to: Catholic Herald, 702 S. High Point Rd., Madison, WI 53719, or e-mail

Article removed: Because of a licensing agreement with Catholic News Service, the Catholic Herald may archive CNS news stories for only 30 days. A CNS article has been removed from this site: Walk to Capitol Hill is still the top March for Life event.

A related story was published in the January 17, 2008 print edition of the Catholic Herald.

For more information on this topic, see the Pro-Life Events sidebar, the Life Issues Forum and this editorial.

Pro-Life Events

DODGEVILLE -- The Iowa County Chapter of Wisconsin Right to Life will hold a "Rally for Life" on Sunday, Jan. 20, 1 p.m., on the main steps of the Iowa County Courthouse, 222 N. Iowa St. A keynote speech will be followed by a silent walk in prayer. Hot beverages and cookies will be provided after. Contact: Theresa, 608-583-2149; Barb, 608-929-7544; or Peg, 608-583-6024.

MADISON -- A candlelit vigil led by Fr. Eric Nielsen, pastor of St. Paul's University Catholic Center, Madison, will be held commemorating the 35th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade on Tuesday, Jan. 22, at 5:30 p.m., at the Planned Parenthood eastside clinic, 3706 Orin Rd, off Stoughton Rd. A rosary will be prayed; attendees are requested to bring a candle. Contact: 608-698-3877.

WATERTOWN -- St. Bernard Parish will hold a Roe vs. Wade memorial event on Tuesday, Jan. 22. The event, sponsored by pro-life groups in the area, will memorialize those lost to abortion as a result of the 1973 Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion in the United States. Mary Mead, with the abortion support organization Rachael's Vineyard, is the featured speaker. Mass begins at 5:15 p.m, with Eucharistic Adoration to follow until 8 p.m. A soup and rolls dinner will be served at 6 p.m. Parents are invited to attend, as activities will be provided for children. Contact: Brenda Meganck, 920-262-8807.

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St. Ambrose students to attend march

MADISON -- For the third year in a row, some of the many faces in the crowd at the March for Life in Washington, D.C., will be students from St. Ambrose Academy in Madison.

The students will be busing to Washington, D.C., as one of the three groups attending with Pro-Life Wisconsin, to take part in the 35th annual march, held on Tuesday, Jan. 22, the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, which legalized abortion in the United States.

To raise funds, students sponsored an All Saints Day/Halloween, freewill-donation event, inviting local homeschool groups and ConQuest and Dead Theologians Society families.

Among other activities, St. Ambrose students dressed up as saints and distributed candy on a "Saints Trail" to all the children who participated in a Saints Costume Party. They raised more than $1,600 at the event to help cover the expenses of the trip.

The trip to participate in the March for Life is an important way for the students to take their faith out into the world, said Olivia Smithmier-Bohn, a junior at St. Ambrose Academy who is helping to coordinate the trip.

She had attended the march last year, during her first year at St. Ambrose Academy, and said it was a wonderful experience both because of its educational aspect and because it afforded an opportunity to grow as a community.

"It was a really profound spiritual experience," she said.

"In today's culture, the issue of abortion is really very prominent not only for adults, but for high school students," she said. "It's a powerful witness to peers . . . that we really do believe and are willing to make sacrifices" to show abortion is wrong.

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Diocesan Criteria and Parish Accountability

In our last article we talked about two components of the Trusting in the Spirit implementation project, that is, the assumptions and the goals.

Good-faith criteria

The following criteria help the Implementation Commission to somewhat objectively guide their interpretation of the work that is being done by each cluster and parish.

1 Parish Clusters will demonstrate good faith efforts in developing plans to implement Bishop Morlino's Cluster Directives according to appropriate timelines and guidance from Diocesan offices.

2 Parish Clusters will describe their plans to implement the General Directives of the Bishop according to appropriate timelines and guidance from Diocesan offices.

3 Plans will show evidence of due diligence with the level of detail called for on the Annual Cluster Implementation Plan forms.

4 The Annual Cluster Implementation Report, which shows the accomplishments of Trusting in the Spirit, will confirm what has been done and the difference the implementation of the Directives is making in each cluster.

5 The Annual Cluster Implementation Plans will show evidence of cooperative on-going planning for implementation by representatives of all members of the cluster.

6 Where obstacles and/or struggles have prevented the implementation plan from moving forward, the cluster will have sought the assistance of the Diocesan offices.

Training schedule:

When working on a big project, it is important to clearly state what the assumptions are that you are working under. These assumptions, along with your plan and hard work, set you up to achieve your goals, which, in the end, is really the whole point of the project. Clearly knowing and stating your assumptions and goals goes a long way toward ensuring success in any project, whether the project is personal or community based.

One could, and probably will ask, "What defines success?" In this age of relativism, it is extremely important that we define success and, for the sake of Christian justice, ensure that everybody is operating under the same set of guidelines. The Diocesan Criteria is what the Implementation Commission will use, along with the Bishop's Goals, to assess each cluster's progress in following the Bishop's Directives.

The process of communicating the cluster's progress falls under Parish Accountability and, along with the Diocesan Criteria, acts as additional assumptions that everyone is working under.

However, a difference is that the assumptions and criteria are somewhat static; that is, they are not expected to change over the next five to 10 years. They are the best thinking of the Implementation Commission at this time and are set to allow for the Diocese to grow and mature. As for the process of Parish Accountability, like all good processes, they are adapted over time to accommodate those situations and issues that arise in a spirit of continuous improvement.

Judging success

So what are the criteria or benchmarks that the Implementation Commission will use to judge success and thus help clusters achieve their goals in line with the Bishop's Directives?

In fact, as previously alluded to, there are two sets of criteria. The first set is simply the Bishop's nine diocesan goals that we discussed last article and that have been around since the start of Guided by the Spirit. As a reminder, these criteria are long term in nature and universal in application so that they become a sure foundation for plan evaluation, a yardstick to measure against.

The second set of criteria are what could be called working or good-faith criteria, as they help the Implementation Commission to somewhat objectively guide their interpretation of the work that is being done by each cluster and parish. (See sidebar.)

As can be seen with a little observation, these criteria define, in a general way, what is expected of parishes and clusters as they work together to come up with their specific goals and set their objectives to achieve those goals. They define expectations in a way that, without being too demanding or specific, allow for the clusters expression of their reasons for doing things and for discussion between the clusters and the Implementation Commission.

It is exactly the statement of these criteria that puts in place the whole concept of Parish Accountability, simply: say what you do and do what you say.

Good communication is crucial

As with most things involving people, good communication is the first step toward success and these criteria lay out clearly what kind of communication is expected between clusters and the Implementation Commission. It is likely that if every cluster and parish realizes how the criteria are going to be used, that there will be a good sense of fairness and justice as we go through this implementation process, a process that is uniquely different for every cluster and every parish.

Understanding how each cluster's work will be evaluated throughout this implementation process is very important so that each of us maintains a sense of goodwill in our dealings with one another across the diocese. Even with all of our differences as unique parishes we are united by the Eucharist (Communion), and we need to rely on this great gift to help us maintain a sense of Christian Charity. Let us ask our Mother Mary to guide us to her Son so that we can continue . . . Trusting in the Spirit.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact us at or mail us at Trusting in the Spirit, 702 S. High Point Road, Madison, WI 53719.

Next Article: Annual Cluster Implementation Plans

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