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ANGELUS<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> <strong>Vol</strong>. 8 <strong>No</strong>. <strong>23</strong><br />

A DIFFERENT<br />

PEACE MISSION<br />

In the face of a new war,<br />

Christians keep faith in the Holy Land


B • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong><br />

<strong>Vol</strong>. 8 • <strong>No</strong>. <strong>23</strong><br />

ON THE COVER<br />

THIS PAGE<br />

ANGELUS<br />

3424 Wilshire Blvd.,<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90010-2241<br />

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Published by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese<br />

of Los Angeles by The Tidings<br />

(a corporation), established 1895.<br />

THOMAS COEX/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES<br />

Franciscans friars and faithful pray for peace in Israel and Gaza at the<br />

Holy Sepulchre Church in Jerusalem Oct. 21. On Page 10, local Catholics<br />

involved in charity and peace efforts in the Holy Land explain to contributing<br />

writer Ann Rodgers what “side” they’re taking as the war between<br />

Israel and Hamas risks escalating into a larger, even bloodier conflict.<br />

CNS/LOLA GOMEZ<br />

Pope Francis greets children from<br />

different parts of the world as they<br />

leave from the Vatican train station<br />

after the “Let Us Learn from Boys and<br />

Girls” meeting at the Vatican <strong>No</strong>v. 6.<br />

Publisher<br />

ARCHBISHOP JOSÉ H. GOMEZ<br />

Vice Chancellor for Communications<br />

DAVID SCOTT<br />

Editor-in-Chief<br />

PABLO KAY<br />

pkay@angelusnews.com<br />

Associate Editor<br />

MIKE CISNEROS<br />

Multimedia Editor<br />

TAMARA LONG-GARCÍA<br />

Production Artist<br />

ARACELI CHAVEZ<br />

Photo Editor<br />

VICTOR ALEMÁN<br />

Managing Editor<br />

RICHARD G. BEEMER<br />

Assistant Editor<br />

HANNAH SWENSON<br />

Advertising Manager<br />

JIM GARCIA<br />

jagarcia@angelusnews.com<br />

ANGELUS is published biweekly by The<br />

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publication may be reproduced without the written<br />

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CONTENTS<br />

Pope Watch.................................................................................................................................... 2<br />

Archbishop Gomez..................................................................................................................... 3<br />

World, Nation, and Local <strong>News</strong>.......................................................................................... 4-6<br />

In Other Words............................................................................................................................. 7<br />

Father Rolheiser............................................................................................................................ 8<br />

Scott Hahn................................................................................................................................... 32<br />

Events Calendar......................................................................................................................... 33<br />

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14<br />

18<br />

20<br />

22<br />

24<br />

26<br />

28<br />

30<br />

Faithful share their stories as Our Lady of Guadalupe pilgrim image tours LA<br />

LA Red Mass guests hear from state chief justice, film producer priest<br />

Día de los Muertos: The best photos from archdiocesan celebrations<br />

John Allen on what we can glean from the just-concluded Synod of Bishops<br />

A fictional Thanksgiving prayer still resonates 80 years later<br />

Greg Erlandson: What’s a prayer for peace look like today?<br />

Msgr. Richard Antall: An immigration illumination from 30,000 feet<br />

Heather King on beauty, the Met museum, and a crucifixion painting<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 1


POPE WATCH<br />

The pope on primetime TV<br />

In an hourlong interview with Italy’s<br />

main news program, Pope Francis<br />

announced he would travel to Dubai<br />

Dec. 1-3 for the U.N. Climate Change<br />

Conference, COP28.<br />

The interview, conducted at his residence,<br />

aired <strong>No</strong>v. 1 on RAI 1 just after<br />

the main evening news program. RAI<br />

said 4.5 million people watched the<br />

broadcast.<br />

Many of the questions and most of<br />

the pope’s responses were standard<br />

for interviews with Francis. The more<br />

unusual questions revealed that the last<br />

time he spent a day at the beach was in<br />

1975, that he had a girlfriend as a young<br />

man and that later, as archbishop, he<br />

met her again with her husband and<br />

children.<br />

On more serious issues, Pope Francis<br />

repeated his conviction that “every<br />

war is a defeat,” and said he is afraid of<br />

the possible expansion of the fighting<br />

between Israel and Hamas, although he<br />

believes human reason will prevail to<br />

prevent that. He also revealed that he’s<br />

been speaking every day with the priest<br />

and women religious at Holy Family<br />

Church in Gaza.<br />

On the Oct. 4-29 assembly of the<br />

Synod of Bishops, the pope said, “The<br />

result is positive. Everything was discussed<br />

with full freedom, and this is a<br />

beautiful thing.”<br />

Chiocci noted that members of the<br />

assembly spoke about gay Catholics,<br />

and he asked if the pope was satisfied<br />

with the discussion.<br />

“When I say ‘everyone, everyone,<br />

everyone,’ it’s the people. The Church<br />

receives people, everyone, and does<br />

not ask what you are. Then, within the<br />

Church, everyone grows and matures in<br />

their Christian belonging. It’s true that<br />

today it’s a bit fashionable to talk about<br />

this. The Church receives everyone.”<br />

Asked about the role of women in the<br />

Church, Francis said they should be<br />

included in the normal Church structures<br />

at every level, which is something<br />

he has been doing.<br />

But as far as ordination goes, “that is<br />

a theological problem, not an administrative<br />

problem,” he said, not specifying<br />

whether he was speaking about<br />

ordination to the priesthood or to the<br />

diaconate or both.<br />

Francis repeated what he has said in<br />

the past: “From a theological, ministerial<br />

point of view, there are different<br />

things: the Petrine principle, which<br />

is that of jurisdiction; and the Marian<br />

principle, which is the more important<br />

one because the Church is female,<br />

the Church is bride, the Church is not<br />

male, she is female.”<br />

Just as Mary is more important than<br />

Peter, he said, “the power of the female<br />

Church and of women in the Church<br />

is stronger and more important than<br />

that of male ministers.”<br />

Chiocci also asked Francis if he had<br />

ever had a crisis of faith.<br />

“In the sense of losing it, no,” he<br />

answered. But there have been times<br />

when he felt he was walking in darkness<br />

and “the Lord was hiding.”<br />

Francis said he also has had the experience<br />

of asking, “Where are you, Lord?<br />

And why don’t you fix this?” But then,<br />

“you hear the Lord telling you, ‘Because<br />

I don’t have a magic wand.’ The<br />

Lord is not Mandrake (the Magician),<br />

no. He is something else.”<br />

Reporting courtesy of Catholic <strong>News</strong><br />

Service Rome bureau chief Cindy<br />

Wooden.<br />

Papal Prayer Intention for <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong>: We pray for the<br />

Holy Father; as he fulfills his mission, may he continue to<br />

accompany the flock entrusted to him, with the help of the<br />

Holy Spirit.<br />

2 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


NEW WORLD OF FAITH<br />

ARCHBISHOP JOSÉ H. GOMEZ<br />

A missionary and a mystic<br />

Sophia Institute Press has just reissued<br />

the spiritual classic,“The Joy of Believing,”<br />

by Madeleine Delbrêl, who was<br />

declared “Venerable” by Pope Francis<br />

in 2018. The following is adapted from<br />

Archbishop Gomez’s introduction to this<br />

work, which was first published in 1968.<br />

The 20th century was one of history’s<br />

most violent and war-torn,<br />

marked by atheistic, anti-human<br />

revolutions and ideologies that continue<br />

today.<br />

But in that century, God also raised up<br />

some of the Church’s greatest saints and<br />

blesseds, a beautiful array of fascinating<br />

characters like Mother Teresa, John<br />

Paul II, Padre Pio, Charles de Foucauld,<br />

Josemaría Escrivá, Maximilian<br />

Kolbe, Teresa Benedicta of the Cross<br />

(Edith Stein), Miguel Pro, Gianna Molla,<br />

José Sánchez del Río, Irmã Dulce<br />

Pontes, Chiara Badano, and more.<br />

These saints were witnesses to hope in<br />

dark times, shining the light of Christ<br />

and showing us the path to find holiness<br />

and love in times marked by evil<br />

and great suffering.<br />

There were other heroic and holy<br />

figures, too, not canonized but no less<br />

important and inspiring.<br />

Venerable Madeleine Delbrêl was<br />

born in southwest France in 1904.<br />

She was a creative, passionate soul;<br />

she played piano and wrote poetry, she<br />

loved to dance.<br />

Early along, she lost her faith in God.<br />

“By the time I was fifteen,” she would<br />

later write, “I was a strict atheist, and<br />

the world grew for me more absurd by<br />

the day.” At <strong>17</strong> she wrote a manifesto<br />

that she titled, “God is dead … long live<br />

death.”<br />

Talking to students many years later,<br />

in 1960, she recalled: “At the time, I<br />

would have given the whole world to<br />

know why I was in it.”<br />

That was not the end of her story, God<br />

was not done with her. Some Christians<br />

befriended her and encouraged her to<br />

pray and read the Gospels.<br />

“By reading and reflecting I found<br />

God,” she would later say. “But by<br />

praying I believed that God found me<br />

and that he is a living reality, and that<br />

we can love him in the same way that<br />

we can love a person.”<br />

Seeking guidance she came to a priest,<br />

Father Jacques Lorenzo, then a local<br />

pastor in Paris.<br />

For more than a year in spiritual<br />

direction, he opened the Scriptures to<br />

her. It changed her life: “He made the<br />

Gospel explode for me. … not only [as]<br />

the book of the living Lord, but also the<br />

Lord’s book to live by.”<br />

With Father Lorenzo’s encouragement,<br />

she trained as a nurse and social<br />

worker. At age 29 in 1933, along with<br />

three other laywomen, Delbrêl founded<br />

a contemplative community in Ivry,<br />

a Communist-run city in the suburbs<br />

outside Paris. The women took vows of<br />

celibacy and lived a life of manual labor<br />

and prayer among the poor, offering<br />

hospitality and works of mercy.<br />

Delbrêl<br />

lived in Ivry<br />

for more<br />

than 30<br />

years, until<br />

her death in<br />

1964. She said she went there because,<br />

“in Ivry, men were unbelieving and<br />

poor.”<br />

For her this Marxist city became a modern<br />

mission territory, and she carried<br />

out her mission, not by preaching, but<br />

by her presence, love, and friendship.<br />

Sharing in the ordinary lives of her<br />

neighbors, living her faith with joy,<br />

fraternity, and deep concern for those<br />

around her, she allowed the joy and<br />

love of God to break into a darkened<br />

world.<br />

Delbrêl believed that the Church’s<br />

mission depends on each one of us, no<br />

matter who we are or what our state in<br />

life.<br />

“Mission means doing the very work of<br />

Christ wherever we happen to be,” she<br />

said. “We will not be the Church, and<br />

salvation will not reach the ends of the<br />

earth, unless we help save the people in<br />

the very situations in which we live.”<br />

A mystic as well as a missionary, she<br />

had a profound sense that in the Gospels<br />

we truly encounter the Word made<br />

flesh: “The words of the Gospel are<br />

miraculous. If they don’t transform us,<br />

it’s because we don’t ask them to.”<br />

Delbrêl’s mysticism did not take her<br />

out of the world. Instead it plunged her<br />

deeper into the world’s pain, poverty,<br />

and injustice.<br />

“Jesus wants to live it in me,” she once<br />

wrote. “He’s with me among the people<br />

I encounter today. … All of them will<br />

be people he’s come looking for —<br />

those he’s come to save. … Through<br />

the brothers and sisters who are close<br />

to us, whom he will make us to serve,<br />

Venerable Madeleine Delbrêl had a<br />

profound sense that in the Gospels we<br />

truly encounter the Word made flesh.<br />

love, and save, waves of his love will go<br />

out to the end of the world and the end<br />

of time.”<br />

This is an important, timely, and beautiful<br />

book for modern apostles.<br />

I pray that through her words and<br />

spirit, Delbrêl will help all of us in the<br />

Church to discover, as she did, that our<br />

ordinary daily lives are “our place of<br />

holiness.”<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 3


WORLD<br />

■ Euthanasia makes up<br />

4% of all Canadian deaths<br />

One out of every 25 Canadian deaths<br />

in 2022 were the result of euthanasia,<br />

according to a new report.<br />

More than 13,000 Canadians<br />

opted for medically assisted suicide, a<br />

growth of 31.2% over 2021 numbers,<br />

according to a government report on<br />

“Medical Assistance in Dying.”<br />

Of those who sought euthanasia, the<br />

vast majority cited reasons of existential<br />

despair: 86.3% noted the loss of<br />

ability to engage in meaningful activities;<br />

81.9% due to the loss of ability<br />

to perform normal daily activities;<br />

and 59.2% due to concern with pain<br />

management.<br />

The rise in euthanasia was coupled<br />

with a rise in practitioners of euthanasia,<br />

with 1,837 unique practitioners<br />

performing an average of seven medically<br />

assisted suicides each.<br />

■ Longtime friend of<br />

John Paul dies at 101<br />

A longtime friend and confidante<br />

of St. Pope John Paul II died at the<br />

age of 101 on Oct. 24<br />

Wanda Póltawska was a psychiatrist,<br />

wife, mother of four, and a<br />

survivor of the Ravensbrück Nazi<br />

concentration camp. She first met<br />

then-Father Karol Wojtyla in 1953,<br />

when he was a parish priest in Poland.<br />

Years after becoming friends,<br />

she collaborated with Wojtyla as<br />

he wrote the basis of what is now<br />

known as the “theology of the<br />

body.”<br />

In Poland, she became known as<br />

a staunch defender of the family, Wanda Póltawska in 2008. | OSV NEWS/GUGIELMO LOBERA,<br />

working to save marriages from<br />

CATHOLIC PRESS PHOTO<br />

divorce and helping women after abortion.<br />

“She was for decades a reference point for the Church in Poland,” her biographer,<br />

Tomasz Krzyzak, told OSV <strong>News</strong>. “And after John Paul died, she was<br />

carrying a testament of his vision that she created with him.”<br />

Pope Francis greets the crowd as he arrives to celebrate Mass at the John Garang Mausoleum in Juba,<br />

South Sudan on Feb. 5. | CNS/PAUL HARING<br />

■ Number of world’s Catholics<br />

increases — thanks to Africa<br />

Africa led the world in the growth of Catholicism in 2021, according<br />

to an annual report released Oct. 22 by the Vatican’s Fides news<br />

agency.<br />

With 1,375,852,000 Catholics — an overall increase of 16.2<br />

million over 2020 — every continent except Europe experienced<br />

some growth in the Catholic population. Africa recorded more than<br />

8 million new Catholics.<br />

While the total number of Catholics increased, the global percentage<br />

of Catholics ticked down slightly to <strong>17</strong>.67% from <strong>17</strong>.7%. The<br />

total number of priests also dropped by more than 2,000, making<br />

the average ratio of Catholics per priest 3,373:1.<br />

■ Rupnik resumes ministry,<br />

faces Vatican investigation<br />

The Vatican will reopen investigations into abuse<br />

allegations against Father Marko Rupnik on Oct. 27<br />

following reports that the former Jesuit and famed<br />

mosaic artist was resuming ministry in his native<br />

Slovenia.<br />

The Slovenian Diocese of Koper confirmed Oct.<br />

25 that it had accepted Rupnik as an active diocesan<br />

priest. The diocese cited “the fact that no judicial<br />

sentence had been passed on Rupnik,” as part of its<br />

decision.<br />

Rupnik is accused of sexually, spiritually, and<br />

psychologically abusing more than two dozen<br />

women over several decades. He was expelled from<br />

the Jesuits in June after continued refusal to comply<br />

with restrictions on his ministry.<br />

Though the allegations against Rupnik were<br />

deemed highly credible, a canonical investigation<br />

was not conducted because the statute of limitations<br />

had passed. On Oct. 27, the Holy See Press Office<br />

announced that Pope Francis asked for a review of<br />

the case and a waiver of the statute of limitations.<br />

“The pope is firmly convinced that if there is one<br />

thing the Church must learn from the Synod [on<br />

Synodality] it is to listen attentively and compassionately<br />

to those who are suffering, especially those who<br />

feel marginalized from the Church,” the statement<br />

read.<br />

4 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


NATION<br />

■ Oklahoma Catholic<br />

charter school faces state<br />

lawsuit<br />

The nation’s first religious charter<br />

school is facing a lawsuit from the attorney<br />

general of Oklahoma, who claims<br />

it violates the state’s religious liberty.<br />

St. Isidore of Seville Catholic Virtual<br />

School narrowly received approval<br />

from a state school board in June,<br />

enabling the school to receive public<br />

funding through the state’s charter<br />

program.<br />

Republican state attorney general<br />

Gentner Drummond said the decision<br />

means “Oklahomans are being compelled<br />

to fund Catholicism.”<br />

“Because of the legal precedent created<br />

by the board’s actions, tomorrow we<br />

may be forced to fund radical Muslim<br />

teachings like Sharia law,” he said in a<br />

Oct. 20 statement.<br />

Drummond also argued that state<br />

funding of a religious charter school<br />

could lead to more than $1 billion in<br />

lost revenue from the federal government.<br />

Those funds are dependent on<br />

“compliance with applicable laws”<br />

regarding religious establishments.<br />

In a statement to Catholic <strong>News</strong><br />

Agency, St. Isidore’s board dismissed<br />

Drummond’s claims, saying the lawsuit<br />

“employs the language of fear and discrimination,<br />

twists the law of religious<br />

liberty beyond recognition and ignores<br />

the very real successes of faith-based<br />

schools in our country.”<br />

Mourning in Maine — A woman weeps during a vigil outside the Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul in Lewiston,<br />

Maine, Oct. 29, for the victims of a deadly mass shooting. Robert Card, who later took his own life, shot and<br />

killed 18 people and injured 13 others at a restaurant and a bowling alley in Lewiston Oct. 25. In a message of<br />

condolences, Pope Francis asked for prayers for the people of Lewiston and commended the “noble efforts<br />

of first responders who put themselves in harm’s way to protect the community.” | OSV NEWS/SHANNON<br />

STAPLETON, REUTERS<br />

■ <strong>No</strong>tre Dame students protest campus drag show<br />

Students at the University of <strong>No</strong>tre Dame held a public recitation of the rosary on<br />

<strong>No</strong>v. 3 in protest of a drag show organized on the school’s campus.<br />

The show, which was advertised using the official university logo and cosponsored<br />

by four academic departments, is connected to a class titled “What a Drag: Drag on<br />

Screen — Variations and Meanings.”<br />

“Allowing this event to proceed would constitute implicit acceptance of drag’s<br />

sexualized, grotesque, and provocative conception of the human person by the<br />

university and its administration,” wrote Nico Schmitz for the Irish Rover, a conservative<br />

student publication that first brought attention to the planned drag show in<br />

September.<br />

A previous attempt to host a drag queen at the business school’s Diversity and<br />

Heritage Ball in March <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> was barred by the university.<br />

■ The Seahawks player who wears his faith on his tattoo sleeve<br />

Seattle Seahawks offensive tackle Abraham<br />

“Abe” Lucas. | OSV NEWS/STEPHEN<br />

BRASHEAR, NORTHWEST CATHOLIC<br />

Seattle Seahawks offensive tackle Abraham “Abe” Lucas says he’s a “hard-core Catholic”<br />

— and has the saint tattoos to prove it.<br />

“It’s my focal point, it drives everything that I do — my faith and my relationship with<br />

Jesus Christ,” Lucas recently told <strong>No</strong>rthwest Catholic, the news publication of the Archdiocese<br />

of Seattle.<br />

Lucas sees football as his platform to “spread the word of God as much as possible,”<br />

whether through talking about his faith in the locker room or showing off his religious<br />

themed tattoos on the football field. They include Christ crowned with thorns, St.<br />

Michael the Archangel, the Blessed Mother, and St. Kateri Tekakwitha, the first Native<br />

American to be canonized.<br />

His former high school campus minister, Deacon Dennis Kelly, said Lucas is “just a<br />

great evangelist.”<br />

“[Lucas is] so grounded in his faith that he can bravely walk into conversations and say<br />

exactly what we’re all about,” Kelly told <strong>No</strong>rthwest Catholic.<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 5


LOCAL<br />

■ Lay ministers commissioned to help<br />

religious sisters care for the sick<br />

The eight inaugural members of the Los Angeles chapter<br />

of the Fraternity of Lay Sons and Daughters of St. Maria<br />

Soledad made their promises at an Oct. 14 Mass with Archbishop<br />

José H. Gomez.<br />

The new ministers are men and women with backgrounds<br />

in nursing and caretaking who will provide free in-home<br />

services, comfort, and care to those who need it, overseen<br />

by the religious sisters in the Servants of Mary Ministers to<br />

the Sick order.<br />

The members were needed because the sisters in the Servants<br />

of Mary — all nurses — could not keep up with the<br />

demand for help, said Sister Margarita Rico, S.de M.<br />

New members of the Fraternity of Lay Sons and Daughters of St. Maria Soledad pray<br />

at an Oct. 14 Mass with Archbishop José H. Gomez. | VICTOR ALEMÁN<br />

The members’ formation began in October 2022 and included weekly and monthly training sessions learning additional<br />

nursing skills, but also how to provide spiritual support, including offering holy Communion.<br />

“Just like Jesus, go and take care of the sick and announce that the kingdom of God is here,” Rico said.<br />

■ California diocese warns about imposter priests<br />

The Diocese of Stockton issued a warning last month about imposters pretending<br />

to be Catholic priests, charging fees for performing sacraments such as baptisms, first<br />

Communions, and house blessings.<br />

The men, who have also asked for birth certificates and other identification documents,<br />

have been using the names of actual priests from Mexico: Father José Adán<br />

González Estrada and Bishop Raúl Gómez González. The diocese warned that<br />

supplying these documents could lead to identity theft concerns.<br />

Law enforcement has been notified, but the diocese said only individuals who have<br />

personally been victimized can file a complaint with police.<br />

With rare exceptions, sacraments can only be administered at Catholic churches by<br />

officially ordained priests or deacons.<br />

Showing up for the saints — Kindergarten students at St. Bernard Catholic School in Bellflower dress up as saints<br />

for All Saints’ Day. Students in each grade did a presentation on their saint, plus attended Mass, then participated in a<br />

special jamboree. | ST. BERNARD SCHOOL<br />

■ Catholic Charities<br />

of LA helps launch<br />

‘Pizza for a Smile’<br />

campaign<br />

Catholic Charities of Los<br />

Angeles has joined the Saint<br />

Pio Foundation to support its<br />

“Pizza with a Smile” campaign,<br />

which recruits local pizzerias<br />

and restaurant owners to donate<br />

pizzas to help feed the needy.<br />

Msgr. Gregory Cox, executive<br />

director of Catholic Charities of<br />

Los Angeles, hosted a press conference<br />

to kick off the initiative,<br />

along with opera singer Luciano<br />

Lamonarca, who’s also the CEO<br />

of the Saint Pio Foundation,<br />

“Pizza with a Smile” spokesperson<br />

and chef Chris Bianco, and<br />

actor Joe Mantegna.<br />

As part of the initiative, 100<br />

pizzas were donated by Bianco’s<br />

Pizzeria Bianco restaurant to<br />

the El Santo Niño Community<br />

Center in South Central Los Angeles<br />

on <strong>No</strong>v. 2, and 100 pizzas<br />

were donated by Scott Goldberg’s<br />

Fresh Brothers Pizza to St.<br />

Margaret’s Center in Inglewood<br />

on <strong>No</strong>v. 6.<br />

Learn more about the campaign<br />

at pizzaforasmile.org.<br />

6 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


V<br />

IN OTHER WORDS...<br />

Letters to the Editor<br />

A second look at St. Thérèse of Lisieux<br />

I hope others are as grateful to <strong>Angelus</strong> as I am for the rich article on<br />

St. Thérèse in the <strong>No</strong>v. 3 issue.<br />

My interest in her had never been lively because her cult, to which I was first<br />

exposed in parochial school, seemed so sentimental to me. Later I tried to read<br />

“The Story of a Soul” but didn’t get far; my cynical self just couldn’t resonate with<br />

such childlike trust, which struck me as wishful thinking.<br />

But now that I’ve read Father Cameron’s article, I am stunned by how painful St.<br />

Thérèse’s brief life was. I now see that her spirituality was anything but sentimental.<br />

The “Little Way” makes great sense to me as a wonderfully economical way to<br />

respond to suffering, overcome cynicism, and resist the temptation to nihilism.<br />

Well done!<br />

— Michael Liccione, Ph.D., Steubenville, Ohio<br />

Y<br />

Continue the conversation! To submit a letter to the editor, visit <strong>Angelus</strong><strong>News</strong>.com/Letters-To-The-Editor<br />

and use our online form or send an email to editorial@angelusnews.com. Please limit to 300 words. Letters<br />

may be edited for style, brevity, and clarity.<br />

At the heart of the issue<br />

“We need to get rid of our<br />

sins, not ourselves.”<br />

~ John F. Haught, professor of theology at<br />

Georgetown University, in an Oct. 30 Commonweal<br />

commentary on human thought and being stewards<br />

of creation.<br />

“We can talk about war<br />

crimes, morality, and good<br />

and evil when this war we<br />

never wanted is over.”<br />

~ Elisa Albert, author, in a <strong>No</strong>v. 1 Tablet commentary<br />

on Hamas defenders.<br />

“The best Ratzinger is still to<br />

come, he’s not a figure of the<br />

past but rather a promise for<br />

the future.”<br />

~ Theologian and Benedict XVI biographer Father<br />

Pablo Blanco Sarto to Spanish newspaper ABC after<br />

being awarded the Vatican’s prestigious “Ratzinger<br />

Prize.”<br />

“If the climate says no, the<br />

forest won’t grow.”<br />

~ Avery Hill, ecologist at Stanford University, in a<br />

<strong>No</strong>v. 2 LA Times article on climate change causing<br />

“zombie forests.”<br />

Lauren Costabile is the founder of Hearts of Joy International,<br />

which provides cardiac treatment to needy children with Down<br />

syndrome. Costabile spoke with the Archdiocese of Los Angeles<br />

about inclusivity, opening our hearts, and how God spoke directly<br />

to her. | ARCHDIOCESE OF LOS ANGELES<br />

To view this video<br />

and others, visit<br />

<strong>Angelus</strong><strong>News</strong>.com/photos-videos<br />

Do you have photos or a story from your parish that you’d<br />

like to share? Please send to editorial @angelusnews.com.<br />

“The facts are known to<br />

everyone; the question is<br />

how to interpret them.”<br />

~ Father Roberto Regoli, a historian at Rome’s<br />

Pontifical Gregorian University, in a forthcoming<br />

essay on the findings from recently opened Vatican<br />

archives hinting at the reasons behind Pope Pius XII’s<br />

silence during the Nazi Holocaust.<br />

“Narcissus is like the Steven<br />

Spielberg of stained glass.”<br />

~ Tim Carey, artist, in a new <strong>No</strong>v. 2 Religion <strong>News</strong><br />

Service article on a documentary about famed<br />

modern Italian stained-glass artist Narcissus<br />

Quagliata.<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 7


IN EXILE<br />

FATHER RONALD ROLHEISER, OMI<br />

Oblate of Mary Immaculate Father<br />

Ronald Rolheiser is a spiritual<br />

writer; ronrolheiser.com<br />

Where all can come together<br />

Where can all of us believers come together beyond<br />

the divisions created by history, dogma, denomination,<br />

and religion? Where is there a place all<br />

people of sincere heart can find common ground and worship<br />

together?<br />

That place is found in the ecumenical and interreligious<br />

pursuit of spirituality, and our theology schools and seminaries<br />

need to create this place within their academic vision and<br />

structures.<br />

What is spirituality as an academic discipline within our<br />

theology schools and seminaries? It has actually been around a<br />

long time, though under different names. In Roman Catholic<br />

circles, formerly it was handled piecemeal as moral theology,<br />

liturgy, ascetical theology, and as mystical and devotional literature.<br />

In Protestant and Evangelical circles (where, until recently,<br />

mystical and devotional literature were distrusted) there<br />

were courses on discipleship, worship, and Christian ethics.<br />

So what is spirituality as an area of study? At the risk of a vast<br />

over-simplification, let me propose an analogy as a way of<br />

understanding how spirituality relates to theology and dogma.<br />

Spirituality is related to theology and dogma akin to how an<br />

actual game of sports is related to the rule book of that sport.<br />

For example, for the game of baseball there is a rulebook, one<br />

initially codified and then periodically amended through the<br />

many years the game has been played. To play the game today<br />

one has to stay within those rules. There is no game outside<br />

those rules. However, while these rules critically dictate the<br />

lines within which the game has to be played, they are not<br />

the game itself. They merely dictate how it is to be played and<br />

ensure that it is played in a fair manner.<br />

In essence, that is the critical role of theology and dogma.<br />

They are the rule book for how we need to discern faith and<br />

religious practice as we live out our discipleship, if we are legitimately<br />

to call ourselves Christian. But, while they make the<br />

rules, spirituality is the actual game; it’s how in actual practice<br />

we live out our faith and discipleship.<br />

Thus, spirituality takes in morality and ethics, worship,<br />

ascetical theology, mystical theology, devotional theology, and<br />

everything else we do in living out our discipleship. Theology<br />

makes the rules, while spirituality tries to instill the motivation,<br />

the fire, the hope, and the practical guidance for the game<br />

itself, lived discipleship.<br />

I offer this little apologia for spirituality as an academic discipline<br />

in view of affirming that spirituality is that place where<br />

believers can come together in a common heart beyond the<br />

long-standing divisions created by history, dogma, ecclesiology,<br />

and different notions of faith. Spirituality is a place where we<br />

can meet in a communion of faith that takes us (at least in that<br />

place and moment) beyond our different histories, our different<br />

denominations, our different religions, and our different<br />

notions of faith.<br />

I know this is true because I have seen and am seeing it<br />

firsthand. Oblate School of Theology, where I teach, has an<br />

Institute of Contemporary Spirituality in which I see Roman<br />

Catholics, Protestants, and Evangelicals of every persuasion<br />

studying together, searching together, and praying together in<br />

a way that denominational differences simply don’t enter into.<br />

Everyone, irrespective of denomination, is searching for the<br />

same things: What does it mean to be a disciple of Jesus today?<br />

How does one genuinely pray? How do we sustain faith in a<br />

secular world that so easily swallows us whole? How can we<br />

pass our faith on to our own children? How can we be both<br />

prophet and healer in our bitterly divided world? What is a<br />

faith-based response to injustice? How does someone age and<br />

die well? What insights and grace can we draw from the deep<br />

wells of Christian mysticism and hagiography to help guide<br />

our lives?<br />

Everyone has the same questions, and everyone is searching<br />

at the same places. Denominationalism recedes when spirituality<br />

takes over.<br />

Moreover, this doesn’t just pertain to being together beyond<br />

the differences of denominations among Christians; the same<br />

holds true vis-à-vis our separation from other world religions.<br />

The questions we are grappling with as Christians are the same<br />

questions that Hindu, Buddhist, Islamic, Taoist, and other<br />

believers are grappling with, and they are looking to us for help<br />

even as we are looking to them for help.<br />

In spirituality, Christians learn from Sufi Islamic mystics,<br />

even as Islamic believers delve into Mariology and Christian<br />

mysticism. Buddhist, Hindu, and Taoist believers pick up the<br />

“Spiritual Exercise of St. Ignatius,” even as Christians learn<br />

from various Buddhist and Hindu methods of meditation.<br />

Jesus assured us that in God’s house there are many rooms.<br />

Spirituality is one of those rooms. Spirituality is the room<br />

where all who are caught up in a common need, common<br />

search, and common hope, can bracket for a time their denominational<br />

and religious differences and search together.<br />

Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t take away with our differences;<br />

but it gives us a place where we can be in a community of<br />

life and faith with one another, beyond those differences.<br />

8 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


PRESENCE, NOT POWER<br />

Palestinian Christians in the village of Jifna, West Bank,<br />

attend Mass on Oct. <strong>23</strong> for those killed during a strike on<br />

the Greek Orthodox church of Saint Porphyrius in Gaza<br />

City Oct. 20. | JAAFAR ASHTIYEH/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES<br />

As the war between<br />

Israel and Hamas<br />

rages, local Catholics<br />

are helping wage<br />

a different kind of<br />

campaign in the<br />

Holy Land.<br />

BY ANN RODGERS<br />

Early on Oct. 7, Jesus Fernandez<br />

was flying into Tel Aviv to<br />

organize a conference to help<br />

some Arab government leaders work<br />

toward normalizing relations with<br />

Israel, as envisioned in the Abraham<br />

Accords. When the plane ended Wi-Fi<br />

service shortly before landing, he was<br />

optimistic.<br />

Minutes later, as Wi-Fi returned on<br />

the runway, “we had received about<br />

1,000 notifications about rockets hitting<br />

the southern part of Israel — and<br />

the hostages,” said Fernandez, a 2016<br />

graduate of St. Anthony High School<br />

in Long Beach who is now associate<br />

director of global events for the Atlantic<br />

Council.<br />

The conference was canceled. Fernandez<br />

hesitated to predict the future<br />

of the effort. His advice to LA Catholics<br />

who want to help is to support the<br />

major Catholic organizations doing<br />

humanitarian work in and around the<br />

war zone. “There are Christian leaders<br />

doing great work over there,” he said.<br />

“Remember the most vulnerable and<br />

find ways that you can support them.”<br />

10 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


Hadas Kalderon (right), breaks down in<br />

tears while looking through the burnt out<br />

home of her late mother, Rina Sutzkever<br />

Oct. 30. Kalderon’s children were<br />

taken hostage by Hamas during the Oct. 7<br />

attacks on Israel, and her mother and niece<br />

killed. The attacks killed 1,400 people,<br />

according to Israeli authorities. | DAN<br />

KITWOOD/GETTY IMAGES<br />

Catholics from Southern California<br />

are known for stepping up with that<br />

kind of support when it’s been most<br />

needed.<br />

Denise Scalzo is councilor for the<br />

Western Lieutenancy of the Equestrian<br />

Order of the Holy Sepulchre<br />

of Jerusalem — whose grand prior is<br />

Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles<br />

— and a founder of the Franciscan<br />

Foundation for the Holy Land.<br />

A professional fundraiser who lives<br />

in the San Diego area, Scalzo has<br />

been to the Holy Land 103 times since<br />

1991. She was scheduled for a medical<br />

mission when the war erupted.<br />

“I don’t take sides,” she said of the<br />

current situation. Rather, Scalzo’s<br />

foundation works to keep a Christian<br />

presence in a region known for complex<br />

tensions and competing claims.<br />

Three decades ago, “Christians were<br />

leaving the country and we were trying<br />

to provide enough for them to stay<br />

there,” Scalzo said. “They really didn’t<br />

want to leave. But they wanted their<br />

children to be in a safe community. So<br />

we worked on supporting basic human<br />

rights and resources that are important<br />

for their community.”<br />

To do that, the Franciscan Foundation<br />

supplements income from the<br />

Holy Land collection, which churches<br />

around the world take on Good Friday<br />

for Franciscan ministry in the lands of<br />

Jesus and the earliest Christians. The<br />

popes have given custody of the Holy<br />

Land to the Franciscans since the 13th<br />

century because of their history of<br />

evangelizing through friendship. The<br />

foundation, incorporated in 1994, is<br />

intended to keep a Christian presence<br />

there, and provides humanitarian and<br />

educational assistance to everyone in<br />

those communities, regardless of faith<br />

or ethnicity.<br />

Franciscan aid programs range from<br />

scholarships and music education to<br />

housing. Children Without Borders<br />

organizes soccer teams of Christians,<br />

Muslims, and Jews so that they interact<br />

with one another. It also sponsors<br />

the interfaith Children’s March for<br />

Peace each year in Bethlehem.<br />

“Saying that all Palestinians are like<br />

Hamas is like saying that all Italians<br />

are like the mafia,” Scalzo said.<br />

The people of Gaza endure especially<br />

harsh conditions, she said.<br />

Although that region has always been<br />

impoverished, after Hamas was elected<br />

to govern it in 2007, Israel and Egypt<br />

established blockades. It is extremely<br />

difficult for residents to leave, even in<br />

cases of dire need.<br />

The young people who participated<br />

in church-sponsored programs in<br />

the 1990s “were more hopeful. They<br />

would say, ‘We don’t dislike Jews and<br />

other people the way our parents do.’...<br />

Seeing that break down is really hard<br />

to watch,” she said.<br />

“But there is such a difference between<br />

going through the intifada and<br />

watching what is happening now.”<br />

Late last month, the Vatican’s ambassador<br />

to the United Nations, Archbishop<br />

Gabriele Caccia, declared that the<br />

Holy see “unequivocally condemns<br />

the terrorist attack carried out by Hamas<br />

and other armed groups,” calling<br />

the killings crimes that “demonstrate<br />

utter contempt for human life.”<br />

He also reminded the world that<br />

responsibility for terrorist acts “can<br />

never be attributed to an entire nation<br />

or people” and urged the governments<br />

of Israel and Palestine to “renew their<br />

commitment toward a peace based on<br />

justice and respect for the legitimate<br />

aspirations of both sides.”<br />

Meanwhile, the Franciscan Foundation<br />

estimates that within 50 years the<br />

Christian community will vanish from<br />

the lands where Jesus walked unless<br />

major steps are taken to support them<br />

and the communities in which they<br />

live.<br />

When the Holy See founded a relief<br />

committee during the Arab-Israeli<br />

War in 1949 — which it had entrusted<br />

to the Catholic Near East Welfare<br />

Association (CNEWA) — Christians<br />

comprised 20% of the Holy Land<br />

population. Today they are less than<br />

2%, and just 1,000 of Gaza’s 2.2 million<br />

residents are Christian. CNEWA<br />

works in and through the Eastern<br />

Catholic Churches of the Holy Land,<br />

as well as in Eastern Europe and<br />

northeast Africa, to support their pastoral<br />

and humanitarian work.<br />

“We always work through local<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 11


Workers from the Palestinian Red Crescent unload<br />

lorries carrying humanitarian aid after they entered the<br />

Gaza Strip from Egypt via the Rafah border crossing on<br />

Oct. 21. | SAID KHATIB/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES<br />

institutions and the local church, but<br />

in places like Gaza, the Church is<br />

tiny,” said Michael La Civita, communications<br />

director for CNEWA.<br />

“The Church has many institutions<br />

there, such as schools and health care<br />

centers, but almost 100% of the population<br />

that they serve is Muslim.”<br />

CNEWA has spent years helping<br />

humanitarian organizations in Gaza<br />

prepare for such an emergency. At<br />

Al-Ahli Arab Hospital, a Christian<br />

facility that was struck on Oct. <strong>17</strong> by<br />

a shell of disputed origin, “95% of the<br />

energy was supplied by solar panels.<br />

We installed those solar panels.” La<br />

Civita said.<br />

Because all of CNEWA’s aid money<br />

is delivered and distributed through<br />

the Church, the agency has been able<br />

to continue transferring funds for the<br />

purchase of any relief supplies that are<br />

available, he said. The arrival of those<br />

supplies, however, has been hampered<br />

by the limited number of aid trucks<br />

able to enter Gaza.<br />

The most important Christian holy<br />

site in Gaza is St. Porphyrios Church,<br />

an Orthodox parish that traces its roots<br />

to the 5th century. Hundreds of people<br />

were sheltering in a multipurpose<br />

building on the church campus when<br />

it collapsed under fire on Oct. 19.<br />

Among at least 16 killed<br />

were a staff member of<br />

the international Catholic<br />

relief agency Caritas, her<br />

husband, and their infant<br />

daughter.<br />

The 26-year-old staff<br />

member had “served as<br />

a lab technician with the<br />

mobile medical teams,<br />

tending to the needs of the<br />

most vulnerable people in<br />

Gaza,” said Marta Petrosillo,<br />

fundraising director<br />

Dames of the Holy Sepulchre Margaret<br />

Romano, left, and Denise Scalzo<br />

during a recent visit to the Holy<br />

Land. Both women live in Southern<br />

California and have long been<br />

involved in the equestrian order’s<br />

humanitarian efforts in the region. |<br />

SUBMITTED PHOTO<br />

for Caritas.<br />

By Oct. 20, the Arab Orthodox<br />

Cultural Center — which CNEWA<br />

supports — was caring for 3,000 refugees,<br />

while Catholic and Orthodox<br />

12 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


churches were sheltering hundreds of<br />

others.<br />

“Israel and Palestine have a very<br />

strong Catholic presence that I don’t<br />

think people are aware of,” said Margaret<br />

Romano, lieutenant of the Western<br />

USA Lieutenancy of the Equestrian<br />

Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem<br />

and a parishioner at St. Philip in<br />

Pasadena.<br />

“The sisters there and the Franciscan<br />

priests work so very hard to bring the<br />

faith to the people; and keep them<br />

strong in their faith and give them<br />

hope. To see these events now is just<br />

heartbreaking.”<br />

The Order of the Holy Sepulchre<br />

dates to the Crusades. In the 19th<br />

century the Holy See assigned it to<br />

support ministries of the Latin Patriarchate<br />

of Jerusalem — including educational<br />

and social services that benefit<br />

people of all faiths — and has since<br />

expanded its work to include churches<br />

throughout the Middle East.<br />

“We’ve become friends with people<br />

there who just want to raise their families<br />

like we do. They are people of very<br />

great faith,” Romano said.<br />

She cited a letter from Suhail<br />

Abodawood, an 18-year-old Palestinian<br />

Christian who was sheltering with 700<br />

others in Gaza’s Holy Family Church.<br />

“I know that we are safe and secure<br />

in my Lord’s hands, Jesus Christ,” he<br />

wrote in a letter published by Vatican<br />

<strong>News</strong>. “I am praying and fasting in the<br />

church right now[.]”<br />

Romano has also been inspired by<br />

the words and actions of Cardinal<br />

Personal items litter the pews inside a damaged church Oct. 18,<br />

located within the premises of the CNEWA-supported Al-Ahli Arab<br />

Hospital in Gaza City, following a deadly explosion the previous day. |<br />

OSV NEWS/MOHAMMED AL-MASRI, REUTERS<br />

Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the Latin<br />

Patriarch of Jerusalem, whose religious<br />

and humanitarian ministries her order<br />

supports. On Oct. 16, Pizzaballa told<br />

journalists that he was willing to be<br />

exchanged for the Israeli children that<br />

Hamas had taken hostage.<br />

In a pastoral letter, he called for<br />

“ending decades of occupation and<br />

its tragic consequences,” saying that<br />

this was necessary for “a serious peace<br />

process” to begin.<br />

But he stressed that the roots of peace<br />

are spiritual.<br />

“It was on the cross that Jesus won:<br />

not with weapons, not with political<br />

power, not by great means, nor by imposing<br />

himself. The peace He speaks<br />

of has nothing to do with victory over<br />

others. He won the world by loving it,”<br />

he wrote.<br />

“It takes courage to be able to<br />

demand justice without spreading<br />

hatred. It takes courage to ask for<br />

mercy to reject oppression, to promote<br />

equality without demanding uniformity,<br />

while remaining free.”<br />

It’s a message that people like Scalzo<br />

have taken to heart. Recently at<br />

church, she wrote a petition for Hamas,<br />

Hezbollah, the Taliban, and ISIS<br />

“that they have conversion of heart.”<br />

“All of this is demonic,” said Scalzo.<br />

“How can people possibly change if<br />

you don’t pray for them? Of course, we<br />

pray for the people who are struggling.<br />

Of course, we pray for survival for<br />

everyone. But if we don’t pray for a<br />

conversion of hearts, what is the purpose<br />

of our faith?”<br />

Ann Rodgers is a longtime religion<br />

reporter and freelance writer whose<br />

awards include the William A. Reed<br />

Lifetime Achievement Award from the<br />

Religion <strong>News</strong> Association.<br />

How to help the Holy Land<br />

Here are web links to some Catholic organizations working for peace and providing humanitarian aid<br />

in the Israel-Hamas War.<br />

• Catholic Near East Welfare Association<br />

Emergency Holy Land Fund<br />

cnewa.org/what-we-do/emergency-relief-holy-land<br />

• Catholic Relief Services<br />

(U.S. arm of Caritas International)<br />

support.crs.org/donate/holy-land-conflict<br />

• Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre<br />

Humanitarian Fund<br />

eohsjwesternusa.org/spotlight/humanitarian-fund-link<br />

• Franciscan Foundation for the Holy Land<br />

Humanitarian Programs<br />

Ffhl.org/programs/humanitarian<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 13


The faithful walk in a procession<br />

through Avalon on Catalina Island as<br />

the images of Our Lady of Guadalupe<br />

and St. Juan Diego began their<br />

multiparish pilgrimage through<br />

the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. |<br />

VICTOR ALEMÁN<br />

OUR LADY ON TOUR<br />

As LA’s Guadalupe<br />

images make<br />

their annual<br />

pilgrimage around<br />

the archdiocese,<br />

Catholics describe<br />

what it’s like ‘under<br />

her mantle.’<br />

BY MIKE CISNEROS<br />

Marcia Garcia credits Our Lady<br />

of Guadalupe with saving her<br />

life not once, but twice.<br />

Garcia said she was dehydrated nearly<br />

to the point of death at age 1, when<br />

her parents asked the Virgin Mary to<br />

intercede for her and she was successfully<br />

healed.<br />

She also credits Our Lady with helping<br />

her survive cancer as an adult.<br />

“She means everything to me,” Garcia<br />

said. “She is my entire life.”<br />

It is these types of experiences that<br />

brought Garcia and hundreds of other<br />

faithful parishioners to parishes across<br />

the Archdiocese of Los Angeles to<br />

view the pilgrim images of Our Lady<br />

of Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego<br />

as they travel throughout the region<br />

annually leading up to this year’s 92nd<br />

procession and Mass on Dec. 3.<br />

“I came to say goodbye to the Virgin,<br />

and to accompany her at her rosary<br />

and her Mass before she leaves,” said<br />

Garcia, a parishioner at St. Francis<br />

Xavier Church in Pico Rivera, where<br />

the images were displayed for two days<br />

before moving on to the next parish.<br />

The images of Our Lady and Diego<br />

began their <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> LA pilgrimage<br />

journey on a boat. St. Catherine<br />

of Alexandria Church on Catalina<br />

Island was the first parish to receive<br />

the images, celebrating with dancers,<br />

a procession through the streets, then<br />

Mass and adoration before bidding<br />

them farewell.<br />

“The words of Elizabeth, ‘Who am<br />

I that the mother of the Lord should<br />

come to me?’ That echoes also in our<br />

hearts as we also feel that way,” said<br />

Father Dario Miranda, pastor at St.<br />

Catherine, during the farewell Mass.<br />

“Who are we that the mother of Our<br />

Lord has come to visit us?<br />

“Moments such as these, it’s like the<br />

heavens opened and the Lord sends<br />

forth, through her intercession, many<br />

blessings, many graces, particularly to<br />

the community that is honoring her,<br />

like we are today.”<br />

From there, the images traveled to<br />

14 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


All Souls Cemetery and Mortuary in<br />

Long Beach for a day before spending<br />

three days at St. Mary of the Assumption<br />

Church in Whittier, with plenty<br />

of celebration, reverence, and prayer.<br />

Father Raymont Medina, the newly<br />

arrived administrator at St. Mary of<br />

the Assumption, compared the images’<br />

arrival to “waiting for a relative to<br />

come to visit.”<br />

“You know that feeling that you get<br />

when someone’s coming, there’s a<br />

little bit of anticipation, hopefully<br />

everything goes well. When the image<br />

arrived, I had this overall sense of<br />

peace. Mom’s home.”<br />

In Pico Rivera, the visit coincided<br />

with the blessing of new statues of<br />

Our Lady and Diego in the outdoor<br />

fountain at St. Francis Xavier Church.<br />

Parishioners gathered around the<br />

newly installed statues as pastor Father<br />

Martin Madero and his associate,<br />

Father Alberto Cuevas, held a blessing<br />

ceremony on the final evening of hosting<br />

the images.<br />

Maria Felix Chavez, a parishioner<br />

who volunteered during the festivities,<br />

was on hand and hoped the Virgin’s<br />

visit to the parish would unify and<br />

inspire the parish community.<br />

“I hope that we will all place ourselves<br />

under her mantle and become<br />

simple, humble, and obedient so<br />

that members of the community are<br />

unified and place themselves at the<br />

The pilgrim images of Our Lady of Guadalupe and St.<br />

Juan Diego are displayed near the altar at St. Pancratius<br />

Church in Lakewood. | ST. PANCRATIUS CHURCH<br />

service of others,” Chavez said.<br />

The Virgin is important for Chavez’s<br />

family because she has shown them<br />

— through example — how to “have<br />

a love toward God and us as her<br />

children.”<br />

“She represents the immigrants, the<br />

people who are coming from Mexico<br />

and from many other countries to the<br />

United States,” Father Madero said.<br />

“The people are connected to her.<br />

It’s important for our community<br />

because they identify themselves with<br />

Our Lady of Guadalupe as a pilgrim.”<br />

Father Cuevas remembers when<br />

the pilgrim images were first gifted to<br />

Father Dario Miranda, the pastor at St.<br />

Catherine of Alexandria Church on Catalina<br />

Island, and other priests offer a blessing<br />

to the images of Our Lady of Guadalupe<br />

and St. Juan Diego. | VICTOR ALEMÁN<br />

the archdiocese more than 20 years<br />

ago, as he was a bishop’s secretary in<br />

Mexico at the time.<br />

When he first caught sight of the<br />

Our Lady image as it arrived at his<br />

parish, “all my memories came back<br />

to me,” he said.<br />

The Our Lady image is an exact<br />

digital reproduction of the one at the<br />

Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in<br />

Mexico City and has been blessed by<br />

the pope and touched to the original.<br />

The images celebrate when the<br />

Virgin Mary appeared to Diego in<br />

Mexico in 1531 to ask that a shrine be<br />

built on Tepeyac Hill.<br />

After appearing to the<br />

bishop several times,<br />

Diego brought roses in his<br />

“tilma” (cloak) as proof<br />

of Mary’s request. When<br />

he opened his cloak, the<br />

image of Our Lady of<br />

Guadalupe was miraculously<br />

imprinted on the<br />

cloak.<br />

Since then, Our Lady<br />

of Guadalupe has been<br />

named the patroness<br />

of the Americas and a<br />

particularly strong sign for<br />

immigrants.<br />

“She is not just the<br />

mother of Mexicans,<br />

but to the whole world,”<br />

Chavez said. “She is the<br />

mother to God, and she is<br />

our mother.”<br />

From Pico Rivera, the<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 15


Father Martin Madero, pastor at St.<br />

Francis Xavier Church in Pico Rivera,<br />

blesses the new statues of Our Lady of<br />

Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego in the parish’s<br />

outdoor fountain. | MIKE CISNEROS<br />

images continued to other parishes,<br />

including Our Lady of Victory<br />

Church in East LA, and St. Lawrence<br />

of Brindisi Church in Watts. Wherever<br />

they go, Catholics say, they find a<br />

way of pointing people toward a more<br />

important figure.<br />

“I was away from the Church for<br />

a while, but I’ve come back,” said<br />

Ruben Martinez, a parishioner at St.<br />

Francis Xavier.<br />

“Through praying the rosary and just<br />

contemplating the mysteries of the<br />

rosary, learning more about her and<br />

the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe,<br />

it’s brought me closer to Jesus Christ<br />

and to the Church.”<br />

“We all need that friend, that family<br />

member that we go to when we ask for<br />

prayers when something’s not going<br />

right,” Father Medina said. “We need<br />

all the spiritual help we can get. Our<br />

Lady is going to provide us with that<br />

help.”<br />

To view the images’ pilgrimage schedule,<br />

visit lacatholics.org/guadalupe.<br />

Mike Cisneros is the associate editor<br />

of <strong>Angelus</strong>.<br />

16 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • <strong>17</strong>


Archbishop José H. Gomez greets California Chief Justice Patricia<br />

Guerrero at the end of the <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> LA Red Mass Oct. 25. At right is<br />

retired LA Superior Court Judge Stephen Moloney, a member of<br />

the St. Thomas More Society of LA. | VICTOR ALEMÁN<br />

ENTRUSTED WITH MUCH<br />

California’s Chief Justice praised St. Thomas More as a<br />

‘guiding figure’ for public servants at the annual Red Mass.<br />

BY PABLO KAY<br />

California’s Chief Justice hailed the example of St.<br />

Thomas More as she urged legal professionals and<br />

civic leaders to build trust in the state’s legal system at<br />

LA’s 41st annual Red Mass.<br />

Recalling the “unfathomable violence and suffering” witnessed<br />

by the world in recent weeks and describing public<br />

trust in institutions and the rule of law as “fragile,” Chief<br />

Justice Patricia Guerrero said the 16th-century English saint<br />

“represents a guiding figure for lawyers, judges, and public<br />

servants to navigate the complexities of our work and our<br />

world.”<br />

“St. Thomas More reminds us that in a world that can<br />

often seem turbulent, we must not abandon our duty as<br />

guardians of the law,” said Guerrero, who gave the closing<br />

remarks at the Oct. 25 liturgy at the Cathedral of Our Lady<br />

of the Angels. The Mass was presided by Archbishop José H.<br />

Gomez and concelebrated by a dozen priests.<br />

Guerrero, a Democrat, became the Supreme Court of<br />

California’s first Latina justice after she was nominated to<br />

the court by Gov. Gavin <strong>News</strong>om last year.<br />

“It is a difficult time when we are called to do all that’s in<br />

our power in ways, big or small, to create a more just world,”<br />

said Guerrero. “We must continue to pursue justice and<br />

compassion, uphold the truth, and defend the rights of the<br />

most vulnerable.”<br />

Organized by the local chapter of the St. Thomas More<br />

Society, the Red Mass is an ecumenical, civic celebration<br />

that honors judges, lawyers, legislators, and legal professionals<br />

usually held around the time the U.S. Supreme Court<br />

begins its new year.<br />

The more than 200 people attending this year included<br />

representatives of various faith traditions. As in previous<br />

years, the Mass’ ceremonial honor guard was led by the<br />

Knights of Saint Peter Claver and the Knights of Columbus.<br />

Also at the liturgy were members of the Knights of the Holy<br />

Sepulchre and the Order of Malta, including Order of Malta<br />

Grand Commander Fra’ Emmanuel Rousseau, who was<br />

visiting from France.<br />

In her remarks, Guerrero also recalled the “deep and abiding”<br />

faith of her grandmother, who together with her parents<br />

passed on to her the “values of compassion and helping<br />

others” while growing up in California’s Imperial Valley.<br />

This year’s homilist was Father Edward Siebert, SJ, rector<br />

of Loyola Marymount University’s Jesuit community and<br />

18 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


a longtime film producer who most recently worked as an<br />

executive producer for the <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> Russell Crowe film, “The<br />

Pope’s Exorcist.”<br />

The Jesuit invoked the 1957 legal drama “12 Angry Men”<br />

in his homily to connect the theme of the evening’s liturgy<br />

with Jesus’ words in the Gospel parable of the faithful<br />

servants: “Much will be required of the person entrusted<br />

with much, and still more will be demanded of the person<br />

entrusted with more” (Luke 12:48).<br />

“Both the film and the Gospel parable offer us a narrative<br />

of human experience that helps us to rise above the oft confining<br />

limits of human experience in order to attain the ultimate<br />

ideas of justice and truth,” Siebert said in his homily.<br />

The Latin word for “more” as found in the Gospel, Siebert<br />

said, is “magis,” a term that can translate to “greater” and was<br />

often used by St. Ignatius Loyola. “For St. Ignatius Loyola,<br />

the superlative was always God,” said Siebert, who is also the<br />

founder and president of Loyola Productions, Inc. “And the<br />

comparative, ‘the greater,’ was how we discovered what was<br />

more just, loving, and pleasing to God.”<br />

The Spanish saint’s understanding of the gospel, Siebert<br />

said, “would call all religious authorities, and I dare say, civic<br />

authorities, to pursue the ‘greater’ in their own challenging,<br />

probing, and consequential deliberations.”<br />

Before the end of the Mass, St. Thomas More Society of<br />

LA president Carmela Bombay announced the death of T.<br />

Matthew Hansen, general counsel for the Catholic Community<br />

Foundation of LA and a member of the society chapter’s<br />

board, who had died just three days earlier on Oct. 22.<br />

Also remembered was Bishop David O’Connell, who was<br />

killed earlier this year and had concelebrated last year’s Red<br />

Mass alongside Archbishop Gomez. State Sen. Bob Archuleta,<br />

D-Pico Rivera, recalled that he received holy Communion<br />

from O’Connell at last year’s Mass. This year’s Mass, he<br />

told <strong>Angelus</strong>, was a chance to remember and pray for a man<br />

he considered a friend.<br />

“He was truly the man of the cloth and he will be missed,<br />

and we honor him today,” said Archuleta, who sponsored 30<br />

freeway-adjacent digital billboards around the LA area honoring<br />

Bishop O’Connell following his death last February.<br />

Pablo Kay is the editor-in-chief of <strong>Angelus</strong>.<br />

Father Edward Siebert, SJ, a film producer and rector of LMU’s Jesuit<br />

community, was this year’s Red Mass homilist. | VICTOR ALEMÁN<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 19


DECORATE FOR<br />

THE DEPARTED<br />

Deacon Sergio Perez walks through the event<br />

blessing decorated altars during a Día de los<br />

Muertos event at Calvary Cemetery in East<br />

LA on Oct. 28.<br />

For Día de los Muertos, here are<br />

highlights from just some of the<br />

celebrations across the archdiocese.<br />

PHOTOS BY JOHN RUEDA<br />

Msgr. John Moretta, pastor of Resurrection Church in Boyle Heights, presides over a<br />

Mass along with Deacon Felipe Guzman during a Día de los Muertos event at Calvary<br />

Cemetery in East LA on Oct. 28.<br />

20 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong><br />

Folklorico Ollin performs<br />

during a Día de los Muertos<br />

event at San Fernando Mission<br />

Cemetery & Mission<br />

Hills Mortuary on <strong>No</strong>v. 4.


Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Albert Bahhuth celebrates Mass <strong>No</strong>v. 4 at San Fernando Mission<br />

Cemetery & Mission Hills Mortuary.<br />

A decorated altar is displayed by candlelight<br />

at San Fernando Mission Cemetery & Mission<br />

Hills Mortuary on <strong>No</strong>v. 4.<br />

A sawdust carpet with the image of late LA Auxiliary Bishop David<br />

O’Connell with the Blessed Mother was unveiled during a Día de los<br />

Muertos event at Calvary Cemetery in East LA on Oct. 28.<br />

A Día de los Muertos-themed light projection is aimed<br />

at a building during the event at San Fernando Mission<br />

Cemetery & Mission Hills Mortuary on <strong>No</strong>v. 4.<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 21


THE CONVERSATION<br />

CONTINUES<br />

Participants in the assembly of the Synod of<br />

Bishops meeting in the Paul VI Audience Hall at<br />

the Vatican Oct. 25. | CNS/VATICAN MEDIA<br />

Though it’s too early to tell, here<br />

are four conclusions from last<br />

month’s synod gathering anyway.<br />

BY JOHN L. ALLEN JR.<br />

ROME — In what is quite possibly history’s most famous<br />

garbled quote, Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai in the<br />

1970s supposedly said in response to a question about<br />

the significance of the French Revolution, “It’s too early to<br />

tell.”<br />

In fact, we now know that Zhou was talking to Henry<br />

Kissinger not about the revolution but the French student<br />

protests of 1968, meaning something that had happened<br />

roughly two years before, not two centuries. Nevertheless, the<br />

phrase has passed into common parlance as a classic expression<br />

of taking the long view.<br />

As it happens, it’s also probably the best verdict one can<br />

render on Pope Francis’ recently concluded Oct. 4-29 Synod<br />

of Bishops on Synodality, at least if the question is what it all<br />

means for the future of the Church: “It’s too early to tell.”<br />

After all, this synod was merely preamble anyway: The denouement<br />

won’t come until next October with a concluding<br />

monthlong assembly, featuring the same cast of characters,<br />

which will ponder the issues surfaced but left unresolved by<br />

this one.<br />

With that caveat, here are four takeaways from the recently<br />

concluded synod which, no matter what happens next, seem<br />

reasonably well-established.<br />

Precedent<br />

From the beginning, Pope Francis and his team emphasized<br />

that the purpose of this synodal exercise, first announced in<br />

2020, was less to produce concrete outcomes than to pioneer<br />

a new method of being church, one rooted in listening and<br />

dialogue among all the stakeholders in Catholic life: not just<br />

bishops but also rank and file clergy, religious, and laity.<br />

That precedent is now on the books, memorably captured<br />

in images of members of all those groups sitting around deliberately<br />

nonhierarchical roundtables to chew the fat.<br />

One can argue, of course, about the fine print. There’s a<br />

case to be made that once again Western voices carried too<br />

22 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


much weight in many of the discussions, despite the demographic<br />

reality that Catholicism today is largely a non-western<br />

family of faith, with two-thirds of its membership in Latin<br />

America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Oceania.<br />

One could also question whether the laity selected to<br />

participate in synodal discussions were truly representative<br />

of the broad swath of Catholic opinion, or whether certain<br />

constituencies were excluded — for instance, devotees of the<br />

old Latin Mass.<br />

In a way, however, those details aren’t the heart of the matter.<br />

The point is that from here on out, it will be difficult to<br />

have any important conversation about the Church in which<br />

the full people of God aren’t represented, however imperfectly<br />

… which, perhaps, was the real point Francis wanted to<br />

make.<br />

Reminder of complexity<br />

By all accounts, there was a genuine exchange of views on<br />

many fronts during the synod, even if a stringent media blackout<br />

meant we didn’t know about it in real time.<br />

To take one example, at the beginning much of the conversation<br />

about mission focused on the historical association<br />

between missionary efforts and colonialism, including warnings<br />

about the dangers of damaging, even eviscerating, native<br />

cultures while attempting to spread the faith.<br />

Yet as the discussion unfolded, there were also reminders<br />

that many of the people actually present in the synod hall<br />

were there because of the heroic sacrifices made by previous<br />

generations of missionaries. Without discounting the shadow<br />

side of overly zealous forms of proselytism, this point of view<br />

insisted that Christianity at heart is a missionary religion, and<br />

that the contributions of missionaries, both historically and<br />

today, can’t just be blithely dismissed.<br />

While perhaps such exchanges didn’t result in scintillating<br />

conclusions, they did remind many participants of the<br />

complexities involved in pondering the destiny of a global<br />

Church of 1.3 billion members — and that, in itself, undoubtedly<br />

has value.<br />

Consensus after a fashion<br />

In presenting the meeting’s final document, technically<br />

styled a “synthesis,” Maltese Cardinal Mario Grech, secretary<br />

general of the Synod of Bishops, insisted that it was “based on<br />

the criterion of consensus.”<br />

That was by way of explaining why, on most high-profile<br />

questions, such as women deacons and outreach to the<br />

“LGBTQ community” (a term, by the way, that never appeared<br />

in the document), the synod ended only with calls for<br />

further study and discussion. On such matters, the document<br />

attempted to offer a reasonably honest X-ray of the differences<br />

of opinion that had surfaced, without drawing conclusions<br />

which couldn’t be widely shared.<br />

And, yet.<br />

And yet before the synod opened, Francis basically settled<br />

two deeply contested issues by his own personal authority, in<br />

response to critical questions known as “dubia” (“doubts”),<br />

put to him by five conservative cardinals. In broad strokes,<br />

the pope delivered a cautious yes to the blessing of same-sex<br />

unions, saying it could be done on a case-by-case basis but<br />

without a formal rule or policy, and a basic no to women clergy,<br />

while allowing that it can be the object of further study.<br />

What we learned, therefore, is that while Francis may prefer<br />

to seek consensus as a general rule, when he makes up his<br />

mind he’s not shy about pulling the trigger. Put differently, it<br />

was a reminder that while the synod may propose, ultimately<br />

it will be the pope who disposes.<br />

Cardinal Charles Bo, archbishop<br />

of Yangon, Myanmar, and<br />

president of the Federation of<br />

Asian Bishops’ Conferences,<br />

celebrates Mass in St. Peter’s<br />

Basilica during the Synod of<br />

Bishops Oct. <strong>23</strong>. Bo is considered<br />

one of the Church’s<br />

leading voices among “nonwestern”<br />

cardinals. | CNS/<br />

STEFANO CAROFEI/POOL<br />

PR challenge<br />

While for organizers the point of the synod may have been<br />

listening and sharing, for much of the outside world, certainly<br />

including the media, the absence of any concrete outcomes<br />

tempted many observers to style the whole thing as a flop.<br />

To take one example, on Oct. 25 the synod issued a 1,300-<br />

word “Letter to the People of God” which not only failed to<br />

mention any of the hot-button issues during discussions, but<br />

also dealt only indirectly with the wars raging in both Ukraine<br />

and Gaza.<br />

Veteran Italian journalist Gianfranca Soldati expressed her<br />

astonishment in a piece for Il Messaggero which, after recapping<br />

the anodyne text, closed with this bit of snark: “Reporting<br />

from the Planet Mars, back to you.”<br />

After the final synthesis appeared Saturday night, a Spanish<br />

media outlet, left nonplussed by the lack of any clear results,<br />

satirically styled this as the “decaffeinated” synod.<br />

Looking ahead to the 2024 edition, synod organizers thus<br />

may face the challenge of managing expectations in a more<br />

successful way, insisting from the beginning that it’s about the<br />

journey rather than the destination.<br />

It might help if the “publicity fast” imposed by the pope at<br />

the beginning of the synod, preventing<br />

participants from disclosing<br />

anything about their discussions,<br />

could be modified to at least permit<br />

a clearer sense of what actually is<br />

being talked about. Doing so might<br />

promote impressions that the exchange,<br />

in itself, is a sign of health,<br />

even if it doesn’t immediately<br />

produce the results that some long<br />

for and others fear.<br />

John L. Allen Jr. is the editor of Crux.<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • <strong>23</strong>


U.S. Marines fighting in<br />

World War II at Thanksgiving<br />

dinner in <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong><br />

1943. | WIKIMEDIA<br />

COMMONS/OFFICIAL<br />

USMC PHOTOGRAPH<br />

Wait until grace<br />

Eighty years ago, American short<br />

story writer John Cheever captured<br />

the ‘divine gratitude’ celebrated at<br />

Thanksgiving.<br />

BY NICK RIPATRAZONE<br />

“Of all the days in the calendar,”<br />

John Cheever wrote<br />

in 1976, “no one dislodges<br />

for me so murky and rich a headcheese<br />

of familial, athletic, gustatory<br />

and spiritual experience as the day of<br />

Thanksgiving.”<br />

When the esteemed American short<br />

story writer shared those thoughts at<br />

64 years old, he was in the final years<br />

of a rich, yet strained, life. A master<br />

of the short narrative form, Cheever<br />

had become famous for stories about<br />

characters who gossiped, who strove for<br />

the upper middle class — all the while<br />

creating a lament for the loneliness<br />

and emptiness of an existence without<br />

God.<br />

In public and in private, Cheever was<br />

known for his sarcastic, often sardonic<br />

tone — but he could be perfectly earnest<br />

about the divine. “The Stations of<br />

the Cross are bloody and vulgar. The<br />

floor is dusty,” he wrote in his journal<br />

in 1960, after visiting a Polish church.<br />

“But, even so, there is something here:<br />

the unequalled poetry of our faith, this<br />

vast reflection of human nature, the<br />

need for prayer, love, the expressiveness<br />

of grief.”<br />

Cheever had a lifelong, complicated<br />

relationship with God. In <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong><br />

1943, Cheever was serving with the<br />

Army Signal Corps. He’d enlisted in<br />

the Army a year earlier, and had been<br />

stationed at Fort Dix with the 22nd<br />

Infantry Regiment.<br />

By this point, Cheever was already a<br />

widely published writer; his work regularly<br />

appeared in magazines, and his<br />

first story collection, “The Way Some<br />

People Live,” was garnering critical<br />

attention. His transfer from his infantry<br />

assignment occurred when his superiors<br />

had read his book: Major Leonard<br />

Spigelgass — previously an executive<br />

at MGM — recruited Cheever to write<br />

scripts for the Signal Corps.<br />

In addition to military training films,<br />

Cheever continued to pen stories for<br />

The New Yorker, where he’d been a<br />

regular contributor since 1935. The<br />

<strong>No</strong>v. 27, 1943 issue of the magazine<br />

featured his two-page story “Dear Lord,<br />

We Thank Thee for Thy Bounty.”<br />

Uncollected in his books of stories, the<br />

piece has faded into literary history.<br />

While the story is not as accomplished<br />

as his classics like “The Swimmer”<br />

and “The Enormous Radio,” the tale<br />

captures a slice of enlisted life during<br />

the mid-century, and is a curiously<br />

earnest story from a writer known for a<br />

pessimistic tone.<br />

The Army men, stationed in Georgia,<br />

begin the story unsure if Thanksgiving<br />

“would be a holiday or not.” That<br />

Wednesday night in late <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong>,<br />

the “sky was full of stars and the night<br />

was calm,” but a “damp and unpleasant<br />

cold had begun to come up<br />

from the swamps.” One soldier, Tom,<br />

donned “an extra suit of underwear, a<br />

suit of fatigues, a field jacket, an overcoat,<br />

knit gloves, and a knit cap” for<br />

bed. Exhausted, he “only half listened”<br />

to the stories of Shanko, a Pennsylvania-born<br />

son of coal miners.<br />

Tom missed his wife. He missed his<br />

parents, too, and after waking the next<br />

morning — and eating a breakfast of<br />

pancakes and sugar water—he began<br />

writing them a letter. He is interrupted<br />

by Belden, a soldier who is warming<br />

himself with a pint of whiskey. He talks<br />

of past Thanksgivings — messy affairs,<br />

days when his parents would go to<br />

24 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


church, but afterward his father would<br />

ruin the day with racist screeds.<br />

Tom shares his own memories of the<br />

holiday: “We used to eat until we were<br />

uncomfortable,” he says, but “Then we<br />

would take a walk in the woods to pick<br />

bittersweet.” The herb was not to eat,<br />

though; instead, the cold of the forest<br />

in the evening soothed their stomachs.<br />

Shanko interrupts their memories<br />

with the news that Thanksgiving<br />

dinner was ready at the mess hall.<br />

The normally spare room was decked<br />

for the holiday: “sawbuck tables with<br />

sheets on them like in a restaurant.”<br />

The sheets would be used on their<br />

beds when they got back to camp —<br />

but still, it was a nice gesture. <strong>No</strong>t<br />

to mention that everyone, Shanko<br />

promised, would get a free pack of<br />

cigarettes.<br />

While they waited in line — cold, far<br />

from their families, perhaps doubtful<br />

of their purpose and service — the<br />

men smelled the food that rode along<br />

the wind. After a lieutenant’s short<br />

speech, the line dissipates into a mess<br />

of men eager to eat. The mess sergeant,<br />

though, quells the men. This<br />

was a special day; no chow dished out<br />

of buckets. Instead: plates on the table.<br />

Seated.<br />

The commanding<br />

officer told the men that<br />

they weren’t to touch a<br />

morsel until Corporal<br />

Mangan said grace.<br />

Hungry, cold, and far<br />

away from home, they<br />

likely didn’t want to<br />

hear that rule. Yet they<br />

follow the order, and sit<br />

in front of “the smoking<br />

plates of turkey,” heads<br />

bowed.<br />

Cheever reflected that<br />

the family Thanksgivings<br />

of his youth were<br />

full of drama, overeating,<br />

and overdrinking<br />

— but there was also<br />

his mother’s hospitality.<br />

She “invited all kinds,”<br />

including “all of the<br />

lonely that she had been<br />

able to corral in trains<br />

and buses and beaches<br />

and in the lobby at<br />

Symphony Hall during<br />

the intermission.”<br />

Cheever saw his mother’s pride “in<br />

the number of dishes, guests and open<br />

fires she could display.” He wasn’t<br />

sure if that pride was the reason for<br />

the invitations, or a harmless byproduct<br />

— but he concluded that it didn’t<br />

matter. What mattered on that day was<br />

that people of different sorts, different<br />

views, and different lives came together<br />

to break bread.<br />

Cheever ends “Dear Lord, We Thank<br />

Thee for Thy Bounty” with the corporal’s<br />

grace. “We poor, sinful mortals<br />

here on earth thank Thee,” he says.<br />

“We thank Thee for making us hale<br />

and hearty and for giving us plenty to<br />

eat and we thank Thee for taking care<br />

of all the folks back home and seeing<br />

that they’re warm and have plenty to<br />

eat so we don’t worry about them all<br />

the time.”<br />

His prayer, a controlled shout, carries<br />

across the tables in the wide mess hall:<br />

the makeshift tables with the steaming<br />

food and the silent soldiers. “We thank<br />

Thee for Thy protection and Thy<br />

Cheever’s stories featured characters who gossiped<br />

and strove for the upper middle class — all<br />

the while creating a lament for the loneliness and<br />

emptiness of an existence without God.<br />

understanding and Thy love. Dear<br />

Lord, we thank Thee for Thy bounty.<br />

Amen.”<br />

Cheever ends his story with that<br />

prayer; with that Amen. Coming<br />

from a writer especially known for the<br />

precisions of his endings, it feels like<br />

an affirmation of divine gratitude on a<br />

day of thanks.<br />

Nick Ripatrazone is a culture editor<br />

for Image Journal and a high school<br />

literature teacher in New Jersey. He is<br />

the author of the new book, “The Habit<br />

of Poetry: The Literary Lives of Nuns in<br />

Mid-century America” (Fortress Press,<br />

$28.99).<br />

John Cheever’s 1943 Thanksgiving story as it appeared in the pages of The New Yorker that year. | THE NEW YORKER<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 25


INTERSECTIONS<br />

GREG ERLANDSON<br />

For peace, do we have a prayer?<br />

In recent weeks, several people have mentioned to me<br />

that it feels as if we are reliving the 1930s. Dictators<br />

rattling their sabers, or more aptly, their missile silos.<br />

Threats and conflicts and disasters piling upon one another,<br />

from Gaza to Kharkiv, from the chaos in Congress to<br />

the straits of Taiwan.<br />

Some read the news accounts with the nausea that comes<br />

with a sense of impending doom. I know others who simply<br />

avoid the news, either unable to deal with the provoked<br />

anxiety or unable to see how these dismal stories might<br />

impact them.<br />

When my own thoughts turn gloomy, I turn to poetry,<br />

specifically W.B. Yeats:<br />

“Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;<br />

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world…<br />

The best lack all conviction, while the worst<br />

Are full of passionate intensity.”<br />

The Irish poet’s verse<br />

Local resident Tetiana Reznychenko cries as “The Second Coming”<br />

she speaks with her neighbor near the wall of warns of a “rough beast, its<br />

a destroyed building in the Ukrainian village hour come round at last.”<br />

of Horenka on <strong>No</strong>v. 19, 2022. | CNS/GLEB We see so many threats<br />

GARANICH, REUTERS<br />

now “slouching towards<br />

Bethlehem.”<br />

How do we focus on all<br />

the dangers in our midst,<br />

on all the suffering that<br />

swirls about us? It seems<br />

impossible that in less<br />

than two years America<br />

would weary of aiding<br />

Ukraine’s existential fight<br />

against a ruthless invader,<br />

yet according to voices<br />

in Congress, it has. Or<br />

perhaps now we can only<br />

focus on the grievous<br />

massacre of Israelis by<br />

Hamas militants and the<br />

subsequent obliteration<br />

of whole neighborhoods<br />

in Gaza as Israel seeks<br />

to punish the perpetrators.<br />

Or maybe it is the<br />

numerous mass shootings in our own land, or the crisis at<br />

the border. When do cascading tragedies simply become<br />

distractions?<br />

Pope Francis, like his predecessors, appeals for peace. His<br />

words may at times be misconstrued as favoring one side<br />

or another when his primary concern is to stop the killing.<br />

Popes are less concerned about territorial boundaries or historic<br />

grievances than the here-and-now of human suffering,<br />

but human beings have trouble letting go of their hatreds.<br />

Yuval <strong>No</strong>ah Harari, a professor of history at Jerusalem’s<br />

Hebrew University, wrote in a New York Times column<br />

recently: “As a historian, I know history’s curse is that it<br />

inspires a yearning to fix the past. That is hopeless. The past<br />

cannot be saved. Focus on the future. Let old injuries heal<br />

rather than serve as a cause for fresh injuries.”<br />

Vladimir Putin dreams of a lost Russian empire. Hamas<br />

dreams of martyrdom and the extermination of Israel. Some<br />

Israelis dream of restoring all the historic lands of biblical<br />

26 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


Greg Erlandson is the former president and<br />

editor-in-chief of Catholic <strong>News</strong> Service.<br />

Israel and making the Palestinians go away. The past is a<br />

knife’s blade held to our throats.<br />

As in the 1930s, there are also voices telling us these<br />

are not our problems. “It is what it is,” is our world-weary<br />

cliché. Let the world take care of its messes and leave us<br />

alone. We know how well such isolationism turned out in<br />

the ’30s. Yet we also know we cannot unilaterally fix every<br />

problem, resolve every conflict. Carrier groups serve their<br />

purpose at times, but a deck full of F-16s can’t blow away<br />

grievances and hatreds. Bombs cannot obliterate the past.<br />

Archbishop Gabriele Caccia, the Vatican’s permanent<br />

observer at the United Nations, has the thankless job of<br />

encouraging dialogue rather than conflict. He told the<br />

U.N. Security Council recently that while dialogue seems<br />

impossible right now, it is the “only viable option for a<br />

lasting end to the cycle of violence” that has plagued the<br />

Holy Land.<br />

Likewise in Ukraine there is a blood-soaked stalemate.<br />

Russia continues to feed its young into the Ukrainian meat<br />

grinder, with each side hoping the other bleeds out first.<br />

Sometimes war ends only when combatants are exhausted.<br />

Much can happen before that point, little of which is good.<br />

So what can we who feel voiceless do?<br />

Francis recently called for a world day of prayer, penance,<br />

and fasting for peace for Oct. 27, but few people heard his<br />

appeal because there was so little time to promote it. The<br />

effort reminded me, however, of the dramatic moment on<br />

March 27, 2020, when in the rainy, windswept piazza of St.<br />

Peter’s, the solitary figure of the pope called us to pray for<br />

the world.<br />

At that moment, we were paralyzed by fear of the COVID<br />

pandemic as thousands died and morgues overflowed.<br />

Pope Francis used that moment to challenge us. “Why are<br />

you afraid?” he quoted the Gospel. “Have you no faith?”<br />

Once again, the night is dark and people are afraid. We<br />

talk often about “thoughts and prayers,” but maybe at this<br />

time in history when too many regions of the world seem<br />

teetering into chaos, we need a visible, collective prayer for<br />

the wisdom and the strength to find a way forward to peace.<br />

Muslims, Jews, and Christians say they believe in prayer’s<br />

power. Maybe it is time for the pope to challenge us once<br />

again.<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 27


An aerial view out of an airplane window of the Pacific<br />

coast of El Salvador. | SHUTTERSTOCK/GUAYO FUENTES<br />

A CRISIS IN<br />

PLANE SIGHT<br />

Thoughts on our broken<br />

immigration system from<br />

30,000 feet.<br />

BY MSGR. RICHARD ANTALL<br />

recently boarded a full plane en<br />

route to San Salvador from Houston.<br />

I was heading back to El Salvador<br />

where I had been a missionary for 20<br />

years.<br />

I found myself seated between two<br />

young Salvadoran American men, both<br />

Catholics. One was reading a Catholic<br />

Bible, the other was too emotional to<br />

be reading anything. Both were on their<br />

way to visit relatives in rural El Salvador;<br />

one had never seen his grandmother<br />

in person. He was the more<br />

talkative of the two.<br />

“Jorge” had left El Salvador when he<br />

was only 1 year old. He was very excited<br />

about going to see the place where he<br />

was born, a home of which he had no<br />

memory. I told him of my years in his<br />

country, more years than he had lived.<br />

He was curious about where I had been<br />

and what I had seen.<br />

He worked at a Walmart. He wondered<br />

if I knew the story of the Waltons<br />

and their tremendous success. I was<br />

impressed with his admiration of them.<br />

Napoleon said that every corporal had<br />

a field marshal’s baton in his knapsack.<br />

I doubt if many of the thousands<br />

that work at Walmart had the almost<br />

Horatio Alger-like respect for what the<br />

Waltons accomplished that Jorge had.<br />

This young man, brought across the<br />

border illegally as a child, was a believer<br />

in capitalism. I sensed in him a work<br />

ethic that’s hard to find in his Gen Z<br />

counterparts that I meet.<br />

I asked how his cousins had legal<br />

status but he did not. He shrugged,<br />

accepting the vagaries of providence. “I<br />

didn’t even know I was illegal for a long<br />

time,” he said.<br />

I was surprised he used the term “illegal.”<br />

I knew that people with his status<br />

were called “dreamers,” but I never had<br />

talked with one in whom the dream<br />

was almost palpable. His sincere loyalty<br />

to the life he lived in our country<br />

moved me. I have worked with so many<br />

young men who suffer addictions and,<br />

despite birthright citizenship, never felt<br />

they really belonged anywhere.<br />

Like his cousins, Jorge had attended<br />

public school and lived in the two<br />

worlds immigrants inhabit, speaking<br />

Spanish at home and English out of the<br />

house. In so many ways, he was a typical<br />

American boy, except he was not.<br />

He smiled as he talked about how he<br />

28 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


A group of Salvadoran migrants, part of a<br />

caravan traveling to the United States, walks<br />

along a road in Tecun Uman, Guatemala, in<br />

2018. | CNS/UESLEI MARCELINO, REUTERS<br />

had got vacation time, how many days<br />

he would be in El Salvador, and what<br />

he hoped to see. He was thrilled to<br />

be going to a place he had only heard<br />

about. He was so grateful that he was<br />

able to visit the land of his birth, but<br />

he said he had to be careful, that there<br />

were many precautions he had to take.<br />

If he got in any trouble or was late<br />

getting back, he could lose his “temporary”<br />

status.<br />

As we began our descent to the airport,<br />

his emotion was evident. He was seeing<br />

El Salvador but it was like he was entering<br />

into a dream. His eyes could not<br />

absorb enough, his face in the window.<br />

I could tell he was a little embarrassed<br />

by his emotion, so I said, “It is a beautiful<br />

land.” He grinned with appreciation.<br />

He began to take photos with<br />

his phone; his wonder was contagious.<br />

Even the young man on the other side<br />

of me, who had been back and forth<br />

several times, seemed to be moved by<br />

Jorge’s honest excitement.<br />

I am only a second-generation American.<br />

My paternal grandparents were<br />

both born in Middle Europe before<br />

empires disappeared and so many different<br />

nations were established. I never<br />

doubted that America was my country.<br />

I remember, however, that my<br />

grandmother was afraid to admit to her<br />

ethnicity because she lived through<br />

two wars in which her adopted country<br />

fought against Germans. She would<br />

only speak her meager English to her<br />

children. She did not want them to be<br />

“foreigners.” I think she would have<br />

understood why I was so moved by<br />

Jorge’s situation. He was a man with<br />

and without a country.<br />

Since my trip, I have sent Jorge an article<br />

I had written in a previous review of<br />

“Solito,” a book by a Salvadoran American<br />

poet who reconstructed his difficult<br />

and dangerous odyssey to California as<br />

a young boy.<br />

Although I have not heard back from<br />

him, I have thought of him in light of<br />

some recent articles I have read about<br />

the Catholic Church and immigration.<br />

One accused the bishops of self-interested<br />

actions on behalf of immigrants<br />

— “more people in the pews, more<br />

money in the collection basket!”<br />

The other was by a bishop well known<br />

for his work with diverse immigrants<br />

and their families. Retired Bishop Nicholas<br />

DiMarzio of Brooklyn recently<br />

wrote to “dispel the doubts that have<br />

been placed in the public forum by<br />

some uniformed public officials.” He<br />

clarified that “the Church does not<br />

advocate for open borders. In fact, the<br />

teaching is clear that a sovereign nation<br />

has the right to admit those whom it<br />

chooses, but it must be based on the<br />

common good.”<br />

In the polemical climate we live in,<br />

even something obvious, like what<br />

DiMarzio delineated, seems controversial.<br />

I have heard good Catholics get<br />

upset that Catholic Charities gives food<br />

and blankets to persons who have been<br />

detained. Charity and justice are not<br />

competing claims. They are complementary<br />

aspects of social doctrine. We<br />

have lost that in much of the name-calling<br />

and blame-game antics of the<br />

public forum.<br />

The nation’s immigration system<br />

is broken. Fixing it is going to be a<br />

mammoth job of social engineering.<br />

It is an international problem; an<br />

economic one; an anthropological issue<br />

in terms of family unity; a human rights<br />

question; finally, a moral dilemma with<br />

many sides and conflicting interests.<br />

The solution will be an affair of experts,<br />

perhaps, but like all important social<br />

crises, it requires individual understanding<br />

and commitment.<br />

When the rhetoric cools down, and<br />

reason takes the place of impulsive<br />

reactions, I will still be remembering a<br />

young man staring out the window of<br />

an airplane “going home.”<br />

Msgr. Richard Antall is pastor of Holy<br />

Name Church in Cleveland, Ohio, and<br />

the author of several books. His latest<br />

novel is “The X-mas Files” (Atmosphere<br />

Press, $<strong>17</strong>.99).<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 29


DESIRE LINES<br />

HEATHER KING<br />

Challenging the understanding of art<br />

the Beauty in the World: A<br />

Museum Guard’s Adventures<br />

“All<br />

in Life, Loss and Art” (Simon<br />

& Schuster, $27.99) is Patrick Bringley’s<br />

best-selling memoir about the<br />

decade he spent working at New York<br />

City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art.<br />

When the book begins, his beloved<br />

older brother has just died. Into the<br />

narrative Bringley weaves his grief,<br />

his wonder, his wide-ranging curiosity<br />

about art. The tone is hopeful, wryly<br />

self-reflective, and human in its widest<br />

range.<br />

Bringley is well-educated, a voracious<br />

reader, and an indefatigable researcher.<br />

Far from considering the work of a<br />

museum guard beneath him, however,<br />

he considers his job at the Met a great<br />

honor.<br />

We meet Johnny Buttons, the<br />

wise-cracking Korean War vet and<br />

tailor who fixes the guards’ uniforms.<br />

“The Crucifixion,” by Fra Angelico, Italian, circa 1440. |<br />

METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART<br />

We learn how the 500-plus guards<br />

are assigned, and that they pray for the<br />

galleries with wooden as opposed to<br />

marble floors (easier on the feet).<br />

We peek into the locker room, the<br />

dispatch office, the command center.<br />

Bringley goes out for beers when his<br />

shift ends and makes a few lifelong<br />

friends.<br />

Meanwhile, he gives us a meandering<br />

tour of the museum: the old Masters,<br />

Medieval Modern, Greek and Modern,<br />

Asian. He pores over and reflects on the<br />

art with which he’s surrounded.<br />

He develops a deep affection for the<br />

museum’s visitors: The ones who inevitably<br />

ask, “Where’s the Mona Lisa”<br />

(answer: The Louvre) or, of the artifacts<br />

in the Egyptian wing, “Are they, you<br />

know, real?” or, at least once a day,<br />

something to the effect of “Water lilies?<br />

Sunflowers? Anything impressionistic?”<br />

Over the course of his employment,<br />

he gets married and he and his wife<br />

have a son, then a daughter. His outlook<br />

upon life and his place at the Met<br />

gradually shifts, widens.<br />

There’s a wonderful chapter, called<br />

“Days’ Work,” on the drawings of Michelangelo<br />

and the Gee’s Bend quilters<br />

from rural Alabama, specifically Loretta<br />

Pettway who, like Michelangelo, found<br />

her work almost unbearably burdensome<br />

and did not especially enjoy<br />

it. And made quilts that were almost<br />

preternaturally beautiful.<br />

Painting the Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo<br />

worked in small, irregularly<br />

shaped areas — each would be a<br />

“giornata”: Italian for “day’s work.” His<br />

drawings show his painstaking, obsessive,<br />

pushing-the-boundaries labor.<br />

He complained about “the state of his<br />

spine, his buttocks, his paint-splattered<br />

face, and his brain in the ‘casket’ of his<br />

head.” “I am no painter,” he expostulated<br />

at one point. “I waste my time<br />

without result … God help me!”<br />

He was appointed in his 70s “to his<br />

intense dismay and completely against<br />

his will” as the supreme architect of St.<br />

Peter’s in Rome. He toiled at it for the<br />

last <strong>17</strong> years of his life.<br />

As for Loretta Pettway (b. 1942), “I<br />

never had a child life,” she observed.<br />

Her husband was an abusive alcoholic<br />

and gambler and she started sewing<br />

quilts not as an art project, but rather to<br />

keep her children warm in winter.<br />

She suffered from insomnia and depression.<br />

She didn’t make friends easily.<br />

And the bold originality and sheer<br />

splendor of one of her quilts, “Lazy Gal<br />

Bars,” takes Bringley’s breath away.<br />

For all their differences, he observes,<br />

both Michelangelo and the Gee’s<br />

Bend quilters “are alike in how they<br />

challenge my understanding of art, the<br />

making of art, and really the making of<br />

30 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


Heather King is an award-winning<br />

author, speaker, and workshop leader.<br />

anything worthwhile in a world that so<br />

often resists our efforts.”<br />

Over time, Bringley settles upon his<br />

favorite pieces: an ivory pendant mask<br />

of Idia, queen mother of the kingdom<br />

of Benin, carved from a thin slice of<br />

elephant tusk in the early 16th century.<br />

“The Harvesters” (1565), by Peter Bruegel<br />

the Elder. The Simonetti carpet,<br />

likely produced in Egypt under the<br />

Mamluk dynasty around 1500.<br />

But after a decade at the Met, surrounded<br />

by some of the world’s finest<br />

art, he decides his very favorite piece<br />

is a crucifixion by 15th-century Italian<br />

friar Fra Angelico.<br />

He likes “the look of tempera paint<br />

on heavy wood panels and cracking<br />

gold leaf with its red clay base peeking<br />

through.” The painting’s “luminous<br />

sadness” reminds him of his late brother<br />

Tom.<br />

What he likes best, though, is the<br />

rabble of onlookers at the base of the<br />

cross to which Christ is nailed, “their<br />

faces betraying a wonderful range of<br />

responses and emotions. Some are solemn,<br />

some curious, some bored, some<br />

preoccupied.”<br />

“I take this crowded middle of the<br />

picture to represent the muddle of<br />

everyday life: detailed, incoherent,<br />

sometimes dull, sometimes gorgeous.<br />

<strong>No</strong> matter how arresting a moment or<br />

how sublime the basic mysteries are, a<br />

complicated world keeps spinning. We<br />

have our lives to lead and they keep us<br />

busy.”<br />

We keep busy. We do the work,<br />

doggedly, stubbornly, and grumble<br />

afterward, mostly to ourselves. <strong>No</strong>t so<br />

much that we’re called to do the work,<br />

which is always an obscure joy, but that<br />

we do it so badly, so laboriously. That so<br />

much of us is used up in the doing.<br />

But in the end, whether we’re museum<br />

guards, artists,<br />

parents, field<br />

hands, or CEOs,<br />

the operative<br />

point isn’t the<br />

suffering, the<br />

“Queen Mother Pendant<br />

Mask,” Edo artist, 16th<br />

century. | METROPOLI-<br />

TAN MUSEUM OF ART<br />

isolation, the hard work, the ongoing<br />

sense of one’s terrible insufficiency.<br />

The operative point is the mysterious,<br />

unquenchable life force that keeps us at<br />

our painting scaffold, or quilting table,<br />

or watch anyway.<br />

Meanwhile it’s all there, right in front<br />

of us, every humble minute of every<br />

day, Bringley seems to be saying: all the<br />

beauty in the world.<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 31


LETTER AND SPIRIT<br />

SCOTT HAHN<br />

Scott Hahn is founder of the<br />

St. Paul Center for Biblical<br />

Theology; stpaulcenter.com.<br />

The return of the King<br />

What could be more dispiriting than our current<br />

news cycle? The world is preoccupied by several<br />

wars. Churches are being bombed on one side<br />

of the planet, while bishops disappear into prison on the<br />

other.<br />

Meanwhile, in the United States, we are heading into a<br />

presidential-election year. Political partisans and activists<br />

have already worked<br />

themselves into a frenzy,<br />

and their rhetoric will<br />

soon get nastier. Ordinary<br />

people — good people<br />

— destroy friendships<br />

and family bonds in their<br />

righteous indignation.<br />

If you detect these symptoms<br />

in yourself, please<br />

seek help immediately.<br />

Go to the sacraments.<br />

Make a good confession.<br />

Receive holy Communion.<br />

Then repeat the<br />

process with the frequency<br />

prescribed by your<br />

confessor.<br />

I say this because we’re<br />

approaching the great<br />

feast of Christ the King<br />

(Sunday, <strong>No</strong>v. 26, this<br />

year). This is the feast that<br />

keeps our focus where it<br />

belongs.<br />

“For the Lord is our<br />

judge, the Lord is our<br />

lawgiver, the Lord is our<br />

king; he will save us”<br />

(Isaiah 33:22). The prophet<br />

gives us an infallible<br />

reason for confidence and peace. <strong>No</strong> storm should shake<br />

our inmost calm. We need not grow overanxious about<br />

the success or failure of our candidates or nominees. We<br />

need not even worry much over the scandals plaguing the<br />

Church.<br />

We mustn’t place our trust in princes. The gates of hell<br />

will not prevail against the Church, which is ultimately<br />

“Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World,” by Alexey P. Akindinova, 1977-, Russian. | WIKIME-<br />

DIA COMMONS<br />

the only kingdom that matters. We may witness injustice<br />

during our years on earth — and we should fight to right<br />

wrongs — but always in charity. Everyone we consider an<br />

enemy, an opponent, a rival, is a potential fellow citizen of<br />

the city of God.<br />

It’s the habit of Christians to pray to the Lord, “Thy kingdom<br />

come!” We should be eager for the kingdom’s fullness,<br />

which will be manifest at<br />

the end of time. But we<br />

should not forget that we<br />

already possess the fullness<br />

whenever we go to<br />

Mass. Christ will not possess<br />

more glory at the end<br />

of time than he already<br />

possesses right now.<br />

He comes to us even<br />

amidst our scandals and<br />

wars. If we keep our focus,<br />

we see that the Church is<br />

already glorious, because<br />

it is both earthly and<br />

heavenly. It is already the<br />

communion of saints,<br />

many in heaven, but<br />

many too who are here<br />

on earth, unknown to us.<br />

God is bringing his plan<br />

to completion, in spite of<br />

the world’s injustices and<br />

scandals, in spite of your<br />

sins and mine.<br />

So let’s not look with<br />

hope to Washington. Our<br />

salvation won’t come<br />

from the White House or<br />

the Supreme Court, and<br />

certainly not from Congress.<br />

If we’ve been riding the political roller coaster — or<br />

even the roller coaster of ecclesiastical politics — then we<br />

should repent and take our place with the saints.<br />

This doesn’t mean we cease to fight for justice. It does<br />

mean that we cease to make idols of our human institutions.<br />

We can look ahead in hope.<br />

32 • ANGELUS • <strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>


■ SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 11<br />

God’s Healing Power for Your Family Tree. Our Lady of<br />

the Assumption Church, 3<strong>17</strong>5 Telegraph Rd., Ventura,<br />

9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. With Father Mike Barry, SSCC, and<br />

Dominic Berardino. Topics include: Prayer for Breaking<br />

Family Bondages, and Freedom and Deliverance through<br />

the Eucharist. Includes Mass. Cost: $20/person through<br />

<strong>No</strong>v. 6, $25/person thereafter. For more information and<br />

to RSVP, visit events.scrc.org, email spirit@scrc.org, or call<br />

818-771-1361.<br />

14th Annual African American Catholic Ancestral Mass.<br />

St. Odilia Church, 1335 E. 53rd St., Los Angeles, 12 p.m.<br />

Celebrant: Father Kenneth C. Ugwu, SSJ. Recent ancestors<br />

who have contributed to the community will be recognized.<br />

For more information, visit aaccfe.org.<br />

Tell Me the Story of Jesus: San Fernando Region. Korean<br />

Catholic Center, 20124 Saticoy St., Canoga Park, 5-7:30<br />

p.m. Advent workshop for catechists who minister to<br />

elementary children. Learn creative ideas to help children<br />

prepare for a Jesus-centered Christmas. Cost: $20/person.<br />

Space is limited; register early. Visit lacatholics.org/events.<br />

■ SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 12<br />

St. Frances Xavier Cabrini Pilgrimage. St. Francis Xavier<br />

Church, 3801 Scott Rd., Burbank, 11:30 a.m. Presented by<br />

Mother Cabrini Chapel and Library Committee, the day<br />

includes Mass, followed by pilgrimage and lunch. Cost:<br />

$20/adults, $8/children under 12. Call Andrea Linn for info<br />

and reservations at 909-762-1392 or email andilinn@gmail.<br />

com.<br />

Mozart Requiem. St. Francis de Sales Church, 13370<br />

Valleyheart Dr., Sherman Oaks, 4 p.m. Join the St. Francis<br />

de Sales Choir and Wagner Ensemble for the first Fall<br />

Memorial Concert since the pandemic. Cost: $20/general<br />

admission, $15/seniors, students under 18 free. Buy tickets<br />

at www.sfdschoir.org/upcoming/memorialconcert<strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong>.<br />

For more information, call 310-339-2488.<br />

■ MONDAY, NOVEMBER 13<br />

Young Adult Rosary. Morgan Park, 4100 Baldwin Park<br />

Blvd., Baldwin Park, 6 p.m. Rosary for young adults and<br />

youth groups. Meets on the 13th of every month through<br />

December. Wear your ministry uniform and bring a flag or<br />

banner.<br />

Tell Me the Story of Jesus: San Pedro Region. St. Joseph<br />

Church, 11901 Acacia Ave., Hawthorne, 6:30-9 p.m. OR<br />

Tues., <strong>No</strong>v. 14 at St. Matthias Church, 715 Mission Pl.,<br />

Huntington Park, 6:30-9 p.m. Advent workshop for catechists<br />

who minister to elementary children. Learn creative<br />

ideas to help children prepare for a Jesus-centered Christmas.<br />

Cost: $20/person. Space is limited; register early. Visit<br />

lacatholics.org/events.<br />

■ TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 14<br />

Memorial Mass. San Fernando Mission, 15151 San<br />

Fernando Mission Blvd., Mission Hills, 11 a.m. Mass is<br />

virtual and not open to the public. Livestream available at<br />

catholiccm.org or facebook.com/lacatholics.<br />

LACBA Unlawful Detainer Answer Clinic. LA Law<br />

Library, 301 W. 1st St., Los Angeles, 12-3 p.m. Providing<br />

limited assistance with reviewing unlawful detainer complaints,<br />

jury demands, fee waiver requests, and more. Open<br />

to the disabled veteran community in Los Angeles County.<br />

Spanish assistance available. RSVP to 213-896-6536 or<br />

email inquiries-veterans@lacba.org.<br />

Dominican Sisters Vision of Hope Fall Luncheon. Jonathan<br />

Club, 545 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, 11 a.m. reception,<br />

12 p.m. luncheon. Speaker: Dr. Antonio Felix, School<br />

of Education, Loyola Marymount University. Register at<br />

visionofhope.org.<br />

■ THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 16<br />

Children’s Bureau: Foster Care Zoom Orientation. 4-5<br />

p.m. Children’s Bureau is now offering two virtual ways for<br />

individuals and couples to learn how to help children in<br />

foster care while reunifying with birth families or how to<br />

provide legal permanency by adoption. A live Zoom orientation<br />

will be hosted by a Children’s Bureau team member<br />

and a foster parent. For those who want to learn at their<br />

own pace about becoming a foster and/or fost-adopt parent,<br />

an online orientation presentation is available. To RSVP<br />

for the live orientation or to request the online orientation,<br />

email rfrecruitment@all4kids.org.<br />

Tell Me the Story of Jesus: San Gabriel Region. Sacred<br />

Heart Church, 2889 N. Lincoln Ave., Altadena, 6:30-9 p.m.<br />

Advent workshop for catechists who minister to elementary<br />

children. Learn creative ideas to help children prepare<br />

for a Jesus-centered Christmas. Cost: $20/person. Space is<br />

limited; register early. Visit lacatholics.org/events.<br />

■ SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 18<br />

St. Jerome Christmas Craft Fair. St. Jerome Church, 5550<br />

Thornburn St., Los Angeles, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., <strong>No</strong>v. 19, 8 a.m.-2<br />

p.m. Unique handmade gifts, snacks, and raffles. Call Joan<br />

at 310-670-7801 for more information.<br />

LA Revival Day! Divine Savior Church, 610 Cypress Ave.,<br />

Los Angeles, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Open to anyone leading parish<br />

Eucharistic revival efforts in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.<br />

Come for a day of guidance, nourishment, and support.<br />

RSVP by <strong>No</strong>v. 10. For more information, visit lacatholics.<br />

org/event/la-revival-day.<br />

■ MONDAY, NOVEMBER 20<br />

Tell Me the Story of Jesus: Virtual. Zoom, 7-9 p.m. Advent<br />

workshop for catechists who minister to elementary<br />

children. Learn creative ideas to help children prepare for<br />

a Jesus-centered Christmas. Cost: $20/person. Space is<br />

limited; register early. Visit lacatholics.org/events.<br />

■ SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 25<br />

The Life Beyond the Veil of Death. St. Denis Church, 2151<br />

S. Diamond Bar Blvd., Diamond Bar, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. With<br />

Dominic Berardino. Topics include: “What Happens When<br />

We Die?” and “Examining Near Death Experiences.” Cost:<br />

$20/person through <strong>No</strong>v. 20, $25 at the door. To register,<br />

visit events.scrc.org or email spirit@scrc.org or call 818-<br />

771-1361.<br />

■ SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 26<br />

Installation Mass: Bishop Slawomir Szkredka. San<br />

Buenaventura Basilica, 211 E. Main St., Ventura , 3 p.m.<br />

Archbishop José H. Gomez will celebrate Szkredka’s Installation<br />

Mass for the Santa Barbara Pastoral Region.<br />

■ FRIDAY, DECEMBER 1<br />

Virtual Advent “Cinema Divina” Retreat. Fri., Dec. 1 and<br />

Sat., Dec. 2, Zoom, 5 p.m. Participants will use Scripture<br />

and film in the form of “lectio divina” as a way of praying<br />

with movies. “The Miracle Club” and “Thirteen Lives” will<br />

be watched on one’s own, followed by “cinema divina”<br />

sharing via Zoom each day. Zoom link and film guides<br />

will be emailed upon registration. Cost: $25/person. Visit<br />

bemediamindful.org/cinemadivina.<br />

Items for the calendar of events are due four weeks prior to the date of the event. They may be emailed to calendar@angelusnews.com.<br />

All calendar items must include the name, date, time, address of the event, and a phone number for additional information.<br />

<strong><strong>No</strong>vember</strong> <strong>17</strong>, <strong>20<strong>23</strong></strong> • ANGELUS • 33

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