Annual Memorial Mass Honors Unborn, Helps Women, Families Facing Crisis Pregnancies

Over 700 Catholics and members of the Respect Life Movement gathered at the Cathedral Basilica on Saturday, Jan. 27 for the RLA's Annual Memorial Mass and prayer vigil. Together, they solemnly remembered the near 60 million unborn lives lost to legalized abortion since 1973, and the countless women, men, and families whose lives have been tragically impacted.

St. Louis Auxiliary Bishop Mark Rivituso celebrated the Mass and challenged and inspired all in attendance to "pray always so that we may indeed be a powerful witness to the Gospel of Life in all of our activities and events for pro-life." The Bishop also personally received donations from parishes throughout the Archdiocese to the LifeLine Coalition, a group of social service and pro-life agencies that help 10,000-plus women and families facing crisis pregnancies each year.

A Rose Procession was held right before Mass in which one person born each year since 1973 carried up a single rose to represent the lives lost during his or her birth year. The last person in the procession was an expectant mother whose unborn child represented 2018.

 

Directly following Mass, nearly 500 people also took part in a peaceful rosary walk to and from Planned Parenthood. Bishop Rivituso led the pro-life witnesses of all ages in prayer which included seminarians, priests, religious, young adults, families with young children, singles, and seniors from many different backgrounds. This group included the 150 members of the Crusaders for Life from Chicago who attend the event each year as part of their Midwest respect life pilgrimage.

The Annual Memorial Mass has been held each January since 2000 near the Roe v. Wade anniversary. The event is part of the RLA's Helpers of God's Precious Infants program, in which volunteers gather each month to pray for all those impacted by abortion and give public witness to the sanctity of human life. Learn more here.

RLA Accounts Croodinator Marlene Kren Honored for Seven Years of Service

The Respect Life Apostolate extends best wishes and congratulations to Marlene Kren upon her retirement as our part-time accounts coordinator.

Marlene faithfully helped us with all of our financial, donation and bookkeeping needs, overseeing convention registration and ad sales, and staffing various pro-life events around the archdiocese.


Marlene (third from left) who was also our behind-the-scenes prayer warrior as a daily Mass goer and office decorator extraorinaire. She joined the staff in 2011, serving the needs of the St. Louis Respect Life Movement for seven years. Executive Director Karen Nolkemper and the RLA staff will greatly miss Marlene's prayerful presence, amazing organizational ability, and gentle sense of humor.

She'll continue her pro-life mission as an RLA volunteer and devoting her time to her grandbabies, children, and husband Dave.

RLA Executive Director on STLToday.com: "Catholics are Bound to Accept Church Teaching on Abortion"

By Karen Nolkemper

Many Catholic politicians and commentators used the March for Life on Jan. 19 and teh recent failure of the U.S. Senate to pass the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act to publicly contradict the very tenets of their own faith on the sanctity of human life. It must be noted that the Catholic Church is opposed to abortion as "gravely contrary to the moral law." Catholics are bound to accept this teaching and cannot compromise for the sake of pragmatism.

St. Mother Teresa once said abortion is the "greatest destroyer of love and peace." Pope Francis has bluntly called abortion the "murder of an innocent person."

Women in difficult situations facing an unplanned pregnanciy need not resort to violence against their child. Numerous organizations, including the Catholic Church, stand ready to assist women materially and spiritually. We offer hope, healing, and forgiveness to anyone wounded by an abortion experience.

Regardless of the political climate, we find hope in Pope John Paul II's prophetic words: "In God's plan, life will be victorious."

See her original Letter to the Editor here.

Walk the Journey With Jesus: Lent Immigration Course

Walk the Journey with JesusA Series of Lenten Reflections on Migration

What has the Lord required of us? To do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly. This call to loving, faith-rooted action echoes through every age, and in each season of our lives, we must consider how to respond. In this course, congregations will learn more about the historical context of Latin American immigration to the US, the current state of US border and immigration policy, and the local impacts of these policies. We will also discuss how the story of many immigrant families echoes the story of Jesus' journey for love of us, his human family, and consider how our faith challenge to honor the human dignity of all can inform our involvement and lead us to welcome the strangers among us.

When: Wednesdays, 6:30-8:30pm (Feb 28, Mar 7, 14, 21, 2018) Where: Cardinal Rigali Center, 20 Archbishop May Drive, St Louis, MO 63119  

 Facebook event.

OBJECTIVES

1. Learn about the history of US involvement & intervention in Latin America

2. Review US immigration policy and impacts

3. Contextualize this history in current immigrant realities of St. Louis

4.  Evaluate: “How am I/are we called to respond?”

The course will be led by Sara John, Program Coordinator of the St. Louis Inter-Faith Committee on Latin America (IFCLA), who is also a parishioner at Most Sacred Heart Eureka. Course materials will include academic articles, personal reflections, multi-faith perspectives, podcasts, films, and more. We will meet for 2 hours every Wednesday for 4 weeks, and will also include 1-2 hours of suggested reading/watching/listening and reflection to be done in between the meetings. Our time together will focus on discussion, small group work, and reflection.

For further information and to RSVP, please contact Marie Kenyon at mariekenyon@archstl.org or 314.792.7062  This series is co-sponsored by the Peace & Justice Commission, the Office of Hispanic Ministry, St Francis Community Services: Southside Center and Catholic Legal Assistance Ministry, Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish and Holy Trinity Parish of the Archdiocese of St Louis and the Inter–Faith Committee on Latin America


- Walk with Jesus.pdf

Fr. Scheid Players Open 39th Season with - The Man Who Came to Dinner

The Catholic Youth Apostolate is pleased to announce that the Fr. William Scheid Players will open their 39th season with The Man Who Came to Dinner, a Broadway favorite about a noted cultural critic and radio show personality who, while on a national speaking tour visits the Ohio home of the prominent and conservative Stanley family. He slips on the ice, breaks his hip, and the local doctor says he must remain confined there. Whiteside turns the Stanley household upside down, forcing everyone in town to cater to his egotistical demands. A three-ring circus of machinations and celebrity appearances ensues.

This year’s cast features two priests of the Archdiocese, Monsignor Norb Ernst of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Parish and Fr. Bill Wigand of Regina Cleri, along with talented adult performers from the Archdiocese.

Performance dates are:

  • Friday, March 16 at 7:30 pm
  • Saturday, March 17 at 7:30 pm
  • Sunday, March 18 at 2:00 pm

We have a wonderful new venue for the spring play. All performances will be at the Heagney Theatre on the campus of Nerinx Hall High School, 530 E. Lockwood Avenue, Webster Groves, Missouri 63119.

All advanced tickets are $12 for reserved seating. Tickets are available at the door for $15. The theatre provides ample seating and parking. To order tickets, please mail your check along with the Ticket order form. For additional ticket information, please contact Ann Madden at annmaddenstl1@gmail.com or call (314) 605-7520.

To further help support the Catholic Youth Apostolate you may wish to consider placing an ad in our program book. This is a great opportunity to send a congratulatory message to one of the performers or to bring awareness of your business or ministry. Please download Ad Book Order Form for further information. The deadline for placing an ad is March 7. For more information about placing an ad, please contact Debby Mooney at (314) 853-7651 or email debbymo@aol.com.

All proceeds from performances benefit the ministries of the Catholic Youth Apostolate. Thank you for your continued support!!  We hope to see you at the show!!

These St. Louis Women Describe Why They Are a Part of the March for Life

Three Different Perspectives Weave a Rich Pro-Life Witness

Anna Jones

After attending the Generation Life pilgrimage for the first time as a freshman, Anna Jones marched back to St. Louis, determined to start a pro-life club at Kirkwood High School.

At the end of their pilgrimage, Generation Life teens were invited to make a personal commitment to life issues -- thus how Pioneers for Life was born.

Finish reading Anna's story here.

Pam Coughlin

When Pam Coughlin called to reserve a spot for the Missouri Life Caravan, she didn't know a single person on the trip to Washington, D.C. But as it turns out, Coughlin was well-known by members of Missouri Right to Life, which organizes the annual bus trip.

Missouri Right to Life had come to Coughlin's defense, when in the mid-1990s she was fired from her teaching job as an associate professor at Washington University in St. Louis. With a doctorate in social work and master's in nursing, Coughlin taught a class called "Child Development Through the Life Cycle." During that class, she showed students "The Silent Scream," a 1984 documentary that used ultrasound images to show the horrors of abortion in graphic detail.

"I gave them the opportunity to stay or leave," recalls the now 82-year-old member of St. Justin Martyr Parish in Sunset Hills. "Four of the girls left the room, went to the administration and tried to get it stopped."

Read the rest of Pam's story here.

Alexis Carrasquillo & Zita Myers-Carrasquillo

Alexis Carrasquillo believes that "everyone deserves a life." That's why she was inspired to attend the March for Life with Rosati-Kain High School.

It was the first march for Alexa and her mother, Zita Myers-Carrasquillo, who came along as a chaperone. Alexis called the experience "awesome," although she said "there were some things I didn't want to see," referring to some of the graphic images of aborted babies along the march route.

For Alexis and her mother, taking a stand for life of the unborn has been the newest link in their efforts to support life at all stages.

Read the rest of their story here.

(All three stories were written by St. Louis Review's Jennifer Brinker; photo collage by Lisa Johnston)

Local Archdiocesan Marches Show Strong Pro-Life Witness

Catholic St. Louis Bore Witness to Life Both in Washington D.C. and Locally

For about a half-hour on either side of noon on Jan. 20, students and parishioners from St. Alban Roe Parish and School bore powerful witness to the pro-life movement.

About 200 people -- 30 students in the middle-school youth ministry joined by roughly 170 parishioners of all ages, from babies to seniors --marched on the bike path along Highways 109 and 100, chanting, singing, and carrying signs.  

The lead sign, carried by three students, asked drivers to "Honk for Life," and honking horns accompanies the group throughout the two-mile hike from the parish church to Wildwood City Hall. There Mayor Jim Bowlin greeted them.

"Thank you for voicing your support for this very important cause," he said in brief remarks to the group. "It really is great that we live in a country where we can do that... Thank you for what you do."

After music and song by the school's Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George, along with a little dancing by the students, the event closed with prayer, just as it had begun an hour previous.

Continue reading the St. Louis Review article here (by Dave Luecking and photo by Jerry Naunheim, Jr.)

Generation Life Pilgrims Lead the Charge in Proclaiming that "Love Saves Lives" at Annual March for Life

Archdiocesan Teen Pilgrimage Brings 2,200 to Washington D.C. on January 19

Kurt Hufker huddled with his friends on the National Mall as they eagerly awaited for the March for Life to begin.

This was the first march for Kurt, who was with his youth group from Assumption Parish in Mattese. Researching life issues on his own, Kurt knew that abortion was wrong, and he wanted to come to stand up for life.

"Life is the most important thing we have," said the junior at St. Mary's High School. "If you can't protect life, what is there to protect?"

Kurt was one of more than 2,200 teens attending the Jan. 19 march as part of the Generation Life pilgrimage, hosted by the archdiocesan Office of Youth Ministry. The annual pilgrimage feeds into the March for Life every January. Including the Missouri Life Caravan and other parish and school groups, there were an estimated 3,000 people from St. Louis attending the march.

Finish reading the St. Louis Review article here. (by Jennifer Brinker; photo by Lisa Johnston)

Renaissance of Catholic Education Expands to North County

January 26, 2018
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
For more information contact: 
Gabe Jones
Media Relations Specialist
Phone: 314.792.7557

ST. LOUIS – Most Reverend Robert J. Carlson, Archbishop of St. Louis, Thursday informed Catholic school families in North St. Louis County of the creation of a new partnership-model school between St. Rose Philippine Duchesne, St. Ferdinand, and St. Norbert schools. The new school will be known as All Saints Academy and will continue operations at each of the three locations with the parish designation added to the name. Archbishop Carlson approved the new name and model after an inclusive process of consultation with the Catholic Education Office of the Archdiocese of St. Louis and the families of the respective parishes and schools.

“I enthusiastically support the creation of this partnership school in Florissant,” wrote Archbishop Carlson in a letter to school families. “In addition, the archdiocese is steadfast in its commitment to partner with St. Ferdinand, St. Norbert, and St. Rose Philippine Duchesne Parishes in providing leadership and funding for this new model. Just as in our past, Florissant is again leading the way in ensuring that the Catholic Church in St. Louis continues to provide quality faith formation and academic programs for future generations.”

Registration for the 2018-2019 school year at All Saints Academy will begin during Catholic Schools Week, which runs January 28-February 3, 2018. Current teachers at all three locations will not be impacted by the change, with no requirement that they re-apply for the upcoming school year. Under the partnership model, the archdiocese will provide additional resources, personnel, and funding to ensure the long-term success of the school.

Partnership schools stress academic excellence and strong Catholic formation for children, as well as affordability for families and parishes in accessible locations. A priority of the partnership model schools is the efficient and effective use of resources, with educational and religious educational programs of similar quality in all of the schools.

The first partnership school in the archdiocese, South City Catholic Academy, was announced January 2017 and began classes in August 2017. South City Catholic Academy is a partnership between Our Lady of Sorrows and St. Joan of Arc Schools and is located in the previous St. Joan of Arc school location.

Catholic education in St. Louis marks its 200th anniversary in 2018, and the Archdiocese of St. Louis continues to work toward ushering in a new era – a renaissance – in Catholic education to shape the next 200 years.

“I have been very pleased to see parents and parishioners collaborating and building strong partnerships to create a new school that will ensure long-term, high-quality Catholic education for their children,” stated Archbishop Carlson in announcing South City Catholic Academy in 2017. “Introducing this new school model will provide the necessary leadership, support and direction at the school level to maintain quality Catholic schools for our children and for the next 200 years of Catholic education in St. Louis.”

For more information about the renaissance in Catholic education in the Archdiocese of St. Louis, visit archstl.org/renaissance.

#CatholicSTL

EDITORIAL: Our Commitment to a Culture of Life is Rooted in Love

Love Saves Lives.

That's the theme of this year's March for Life, which commemorates the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision to legalize abortion. Forty-five years later, more than 59 million babies have been killed through abortion, according to the statistics from National Right to Life.

But the commitment to stopping this travesty isn't just about attending the March for Life in Washington, D.C., every year. It's a commitment -- rooted in love -- that requires our efforts every day of the year.

The pro-life community understands that choosing life isn't always easy. Facing poverty, abusive relationships, and lack of education or employment are among the reasons women seek abortion.

We're called to love and support both the unborn child and the mother. We must remain committed to building a culture of life from the womb through all stages of life. It isn't only the loving thing to do, but also empowering when a woman chooses life for her child.

Finish reading the St. Louis Review editorial here.

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