Two UW-Madison professors on the board of the abortion-financing Women’s Fund

An article in Sunday’s Wisconsin State Journal focused on the Madison-based Women’s Fund. The sole purpose of the Women’s Fund is to pay for poor women to have abortions. The fund has paid for 18,986 abortions at the time the article was written.

The Women’s Fund 2008 tax forms (click here to view the PDF) reveal there are two UW-Madison professors on the board of the Women’s Fund – Prof. Robert West and Prof. Robert Kimbrough.

UW-Madison’s entanglement with the abortion industry should come as a surprise to no one.

Just how linked to the abortion industry is UW-Madison, the “flagship” of the UW System?
- UW promotes Planned Parenthood (including abortion services);
- Alta Charo, a professor of law and bioethics at the UW Law and Medical Schools, is on the Planned Parenthood Federation of America board and the Alan Guttmacher board;
- Doug Laube, professor and former chair of the UW Ob/Gyn Medical School, is openly “working in collaboration with Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin;”
- Faye Wattleton, former director of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, will be a guest panelist for a UW School of Business summit;
- Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin is paying UW School of Medicine faculty to perform abortions. UW doctors Laurel Rice, Sabine Droste, Barbara O’Connell, Maria Sandgren and Doug Laube are also employed by Planned Parenthood. Caryn Dutton, another UW abortionist who has now fled to ply her trade at Harvard, previously performed abortions at PPWI as well.

The Wisconsin State Journal article covered many horrific aspects of the Women’s Fund – how women just want help; how abortions performed on teenagers are celebrated and used as a means of fundraising; and how parents coerce their teenage daughters into abortions.

For those who like to connect the dots, many interesting aspects of the Women’s Fund were found in its 2008 tax forms.

The tax forms show the Women’s Fund provides “loans” for women to obtain abortions. Women then have to repay the loan. From 2004-2008, a total of $12,925 was repaid by these women.

The mission statement of the Women’s Fund is to, “Assist poor women in paying for abortions.” And apparently hound them for blood money afterwards. The Women’s Fund merely provides a funnel for rich donors to finance the abortions of poor women.

Read below for excerpts from the Wisconsin State Journal or click here to read the article in its entirety.

From the Wisconsin State Journal [emphasis added]:
At all hours, strangers phone Anne Nicol Gaylor’s Madison home, always desperate.

The caller one recent morning was a middle-aged woman with a 14-year-old pregnant daughter.

After the call, Gaylor opened a checkbook for the Women’s Medical Fund, a Madison nonprofit that has helped pay for abortions for 34 years. Gaylor has written every check for every abortion.

This was No. 18,986.

The fund’s sole purpose is to pay for abortions. Last year, it paid out $162,202, about 75 percent of which came from individual donors, the rest from foundations.

“Of the 632 women the fund has helped so far this year, 147 were teenagers,” Gaylor wrote to donors last Thanksgiving. “Of these, nine were only 13 years old, and one, not yet a teen, was just 12!”

“It’s a stark example of misguided compassion that serves as discrimination of the worst kind,” said Peggy Hamill, state director of Pro-Life Wisconsin. “To finance extermination of pre-born children because those children would have been brought up poor is deplorable.”
 Pro-Life Wisconsin

Marquette University names new president

Marquette University on Tuesday named Rev. Scott R. Pilarz, president of the University of Scranton, as its next president.

Pilarz, who has been a member of Marquette's Board of Trustees since 2009, will take the post next summer. He succeeds Father Robert A. Wild, who has led the school for the past 15 years.

The appointment of Pilarz, 51, came as somewhat of a surprise. Wild announced only last March that he planned to step down as university president next year. Marquette had appointed a search committee led by Mary Ellen Stanek, a Marquette graduate who is managing director and director of asset management for Robert W. Baird & Co.

Evidently, she and her committee didn't have to search very far or very long.

Pilarz became president of the University of Scranton, a Jesuit university, on July 1, 2003. As was the case with Wild, Pilarz was responsible for a major fund-raising initiative at Scranton. That $100 million campaign entered a public phase in April 2008.

But Pilarz, invoking the words of St. Ignatius, founder of the Society of Jesus, said that "…our home is the road."

"Marquette, like Scranton, is an institution with roots in its local diocese, a storied past, rich community and boundless potential. It is an institution poised to serve its more than 12,000 students, the Church and the world in new and exciting ways. I look forward to the challenge of leading this Catholic and Jesuit institution in all its complexity, bringing what I have learned from all of you at Scranton with me to Milwaukee."

In a question-and-answer published on Marquette's website, Pilarz said he felt Marquette "plays on a national stage, both academically, in terms of its research and student achievement, and in athletics. That's important - to the university and to Milwaukee."

Asked what his impressions were of Milwaukee, Pilarz said he took note of a city with Polish restaurants and a Polish Fest.

"I even made it down to St. Josphat's (Basilica) on my last visit and was just amazed by its beauty."
The rest from JSOnline

More on St Joseph's Orphanage in Superior

Thanks to a site called Perfect Duluth Day for linking to my post on St. Joseph's Orphan Home Chapel formerly in Superior, WI.

An interesting comment I found.
That was amazing. Too bad it was taken apart. As kids playing on what was then undeveloped land around the children’s home, we’d stumble on the marble cast-offs from the sculpters.
I hope that the artwork wasn't reduced to being buried, but it looks like it may have just been a former grotto that had been left to the dogs.
I have a few postcards of St. Joe’s in the X-Comm archives. You must have been playing in the overgrown grotto.
Here's the photo:

The other photo at the top is from one of the salvage companies.  An interesting note is that the pews were purposefully made small for children.  In one generation we build whole churches and grottos for children, the next we abort them and prevent them from coming into the world. 

Health Warning: Several other bloggers on the Perfect Duluth Day are promoting homosexual lifestyles.

Who is the new priest at St Mary's church in Tomah, you ask?

Why none other than the diocesan administrator Msgr Richard Gilles!  At least that is the word on the street.  Grazie mille to my trusty sidekick for the info.

I know Monsignor Gilles has wanted to have a parish for some time.  He's been stuck in the diocesan curia for many years now and has never actually been assigned a pastor.  His biography is available on the Cathedral website

If anybody deserves a break from curia life, its Msgr Gilles.  He's had to run the show during the last two bishop vacancies, and had to deal with three different major priest scandals in the last six months.

I think Msgr. Gilles is a great priest and parishioners in Tomah will be pleased to have him.

So who takes over at Vicar General?  Good question. We will see.  But I'm willing to bet that he will be better than this guy....

The U.S. Army at Spring Bank Abbey in Sparta

The Rev. Deris Rice, Sparta's United Church of Christ pastor, is also Captain Rice of the U.S. Army Reserve. Over the last couple of weeks, he has brought two groups from Fort McCoy, which borders Spring Bank, to visit us and learn about our life. Capt. Rice sees a number of parallels between our life and those of the men and women in uniform and thinks it's valuable for soldiers to see some of the other applications of discipline and routine.

The rest at Sub Tuum


There are some things even Latin cannot fix...

HT The Crescat

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel wishes Planned Parenthood "Happy Birthday"

While it's not a surprise when a mainstream newspaper reveals its pro-abortion bias, the choice of words can still strike a nerve. The Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel  ran an editorial on August 25 wishing Wisconsin’s largest baby killing organization a happy birthday. Click here to read the editorial in its entirety.

Happy Birthday
 Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin is celebrating its 75th anniversary with a party  Thursday at Milwaukee’s Washington Park from 4 to 7 p.m. with food, music, health testing and educational efforts.

And we realize that, to some, “party” and “Planned Parenthood” in the same sentence – or Planned Parenthood in any sentence – are fighting words.

Let us suggest, however, that whatever your views on Planned Parenthood, there is ample cause to celebrate the work of this organization, which has prevented far more abortions than it has performed. This organization is at the top tier of organizations preventing teen pregnancy, for instance.

Even one abortion is one too many. And the assertion that Planned Parenthood has "prevented" abortions by way of providing birth control – to minors as young as 15 without their parents' knowledge or consent – is totally unsubstantiated.
Pro-Life Wisconsin

Planned Parenthood is the largest corporate abortion provider in the United States.  They are a billion dollar industry getting two-thirds of their funding from national, state and local governments, taxpayer funded of course.  Nice to see MJS drinking the koolaid. 

More on aborting poor babies

From the blog Right On by JSOnline's Patrick McIlheran
Gaylor, the paper goes on to detail in inexorably unfolding horror, founded the fund whose sole purpose is to pay for abortions. Last year alone, it paid out $162,000 or so, three-fourths of it from individual donors and a quarter from foundations that apparently see some humans as, well, debris. One donor last year, a California woman who’d in the past given to the anti-religion group Gaylor used to lead, forked over $20,000, based presumably on Gaylor’s fund-raising pitch, which tells of helping girls pregnant at 12 or a girl raped by her father.
Both, of course, are horrible situations, almost as horrible as being not merely pregnant but chopped into little pieces and not at 12 but at a much, much more vulnerable age. After all, being killed by a choice-armed mother is much less tragic than being raped by monstrous father, yes?

No, actually. It's not. Helpfully, Matt at Badger Catholic goes through the story asking the questions you’d actually have upon reading this, such as: Did you call in the case of the obvious felony that got a 14-year-old pregnant?

And ( Ginny Maziarka at Wissup does a more cold-fury version:

“We can only assume this means almost 19,000 babies were killed with the assistance of Gaylor and her ilk. That means 19,000 ‘ooopsies,’ ‘accidents,’ ‘mistakes,’ ‘unwanteds,’ ‘low-class,’ ‘destined to be poor,’ ‘loser’ babies didn't get the opportunity to contribute to society, prove themselves, make a difference.”
Two notes.  First, yes I was referenced in a JSOnline article.  Read the whole thing here.  Second, that's I think Gaylor's motivation is really comes down to class warfare.  She sees the poor as something detestable.  These utterly useless (what a Christian would call) persons infect her existence and she can think of nothing better than to remove them apparently in any way she can get away with.  But let us not forget to pray for our enemies.  It is not too late for Gaylor's conversion.

Wisconsin Voters Favor Pro-Life Candidates Over Abortion Backers

Tallahassee, FL ( -- Voters in Florida and Wisconsin favor the pro-life candidates in races for governor over abortion advocates competing in the two states. The new numbers come form Rasmussen Reports polls released today of likely voters in both competitive 2010 election states.

In Wisconsin, both GOP hopefuls in the state's gubernatorial contest run just slightly ahead of ["Catholic"] Democrat Tom Barrett, who supports abortion.

Scott Walker, who in earlier surveys has been the slightly stronger GOP candidate against Barrett, now leads the Democrat by a 47% to 44% margin, with 8 percent undecided or liking another candidate.

Walker, the county executive of Milwaukee County, held a 49% to 41% lead over Barrett two weeks ago. The Republican reached 50% for the first time in late July. Walker has earned between 46% and 50% in match-ups against Barrett since February, while the Democrat has earned between 40% and 44% support during that time.

In Wisconsin, in July, Wisconsin Right to Life issued endorsements for both Walker and Neumann -- whom Pro-Life Wisconsin has endorsed as well.

"Barrett is a pro-abortion [also "Catholic"] James Doyle re-run – magnified – on right-to-life issues. Barrett voted pro-abortion throughout his entire legislative career including keeping minor girls’ abortions a secret from parents and keeping partial-birth abortions legal. Radical pro-abortion organizations like Planned Parenthood can always rely on Barrett to support its deadly agenda and have given him their enthusiastic endorsement," Armacost continued.

Barrett benefited from two pro-abortion fundraisers featuring Cecile Richard$, pre$ident of Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion business.

Archbishop Chaput bodyslams Relativism in Slovakia

I try and keep it local on this blog.  But Archbishop Chaput is on fire at a Canon Law symposium in central Europe.  I think he hopes to motivate bishops to begin to apply CIC 915.  European bishops apparently do not care about the problem of pro-abortion "Catholic" politicians like we do in the United States(or at least recently have thanks to a certain archbishop).  Read the whole article from LifeSiteNews here.

Charles Chaput, Catholic Archbishop of Denver Colorado, addressed the first session of the 15th symposium for the Canon Law Association of Slovakia on Tuesday. He called upon Catholics in America and in Europe, to resist the world's intolerance of Christianity.
I suggested earlier that the Church's religious liberty is under assault today in ways not seen since the Nazi and Communist eras. I believe we are now in the position to better understand why.

Writing in the 1960s, Richard Weaver, an American scholar and social philosopher, said: "I am absolutely convinced that relativism must eventually lead to a regime of force." 

He was right. There is a kind of "inner logic" that leads relativism to repression.

This explains the paradox of how Western societies can preach tolerance and diversity while aggressively undermining and penalizing Catholic life. The dogma of tolerance cannot tolerate the Church's belief that some ideas and behaviors should not be tolerated because they dehumanize us. The dogma that all truths are relative cannot allow the thought that some truths might not be.

The Catholic beliefs that most deeply irritate the orthodoxies of the West are those concerning abortion, sexuality and the marriage of man and woman. This is no accident. These Christian beliefs express the truth about human fertility, meaning and destiny.

These truths are subversive in a world that would have us believe that God is not necessary and that human life has no inherent nature or purpose. Thus the Church must be punished because, despite all the sins and weaknesses of her people, she is still the bride of Jesus Christ; still a source of beauty, meaning and hope that refuses to die -- and still the most compelling and dangerous heretic of the world's new order.

Manitowoc native is only Catholic chaplain at Iraq base

APPLETON — When Fr. John Schuetze, 46, a Manitowoc native, signed up as an Air Force chaplain in 2008, he wasn't expecting to be the only Catholic chaplain at a base in Iraq that had 5,000 service personnel.

Yet his six-month experience at Joint Base Balad, 40 miles north of Baghdad, was better for Fr. Schuetze than he expected.

"I was overwhelmed at first with the size of the base — 25,000 people. There's only 5,000 Air Force, but being the only priest on base (meant) I served the 15,000 Army and the 5,000 contractors as well."

Being the only priest on the base is a side effect of the priest shortage in the U.S. Not only does it affect staffing of local parishes, it also affects the U.S. military. Approximately 30 percent of the U.S. personnel are Catholics. The Green Bay Diocese recognized that need and released Fr. Schuetze from active service for a six-year stint in the Air Force.

Fr. Schuetze was ordained in 1997. He said he considered chaplaincy after looking through mailings he from the Army, Navy and Air Force encouraging priests to consider the military.

He was first assigned to Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota. From there, he was deployed to Iraq.

"Balad, I think, is the most attacked base right now," he said. "There were alarms at least every other day that mortars were coming into your area. (You get used to it) a lot sooner than you'd expect."

He presided at Mass daily and, on the weekends, there were five Masses, one at each chapel on the grounds. He also heard confessions each weekend.

"I spent a lot of time in the hospitals," he said. "I had to be there counseling patients and staff. We also had a Rite of Christian Initiation program. I accepted six into the church on Easter, two who were baptized. A lot of people who go over there suddenly have this urge (to get their spiritual life in order)."

One thing really struck Fr. Schuetze when he was overseas. "The thing that we think is most beneficial — instant communication between the troops and their families at home — from my perspective was almost a negative. All the little things at home, that they can't do anything about, are now on their minds distracting them from being alert and being safe."

He was also concerned about the suicide rate among troops.

"We were dealing with that on a regular basis," he said. "It stems back to relationships. That's difficult, no matter where you are. Things you can't deal with for six months you probably shouldn't have to worry about until you get home."

As the Aug. 31 U.S. end of combat operations in Iraq draws near, Fr. Schuetze is concerned about safety at Joint Base Balad.

"Balad is becoming busier and larger as everyone is coming through there as they're closing the forward bases," he said. "As the numbers come down, it's becoming more dangerous for the people who remain because you're losing the outside security."

Half a year in a war zone deepened Fr. Schuetze's faith.

"It was a learning experience," he said. "The people that I met and the faith and support that they had (was amazing). I got to meet Army people, Navy people. I worked with the General all the way down to the incoming enlisted. That's one of the benefits of being with the military, you can walk into a soldier's day and experience whatever they're doing and learn about it."

He also said that the experience of being a chaplain captain will help him be a better priest.

"It will definitely be a positive, not only for myself, but for other people. Before I went in, you'd talk to veterans and they weren't really pouring forth their experiences. I thought I was going to come back and tell these stories of what it's like, but I found I wasn't telling people at home how often we were attacked or what was going on on a daily basis. When you come home, it's not what you're used to. But what is really normal?"

After his brief stay in the area, Fr. Schuetze has returned to Minot Air Force Base to prepare for his next assignment. He said he believes he will be deployed to Afghanistan.
 The Compass

Pro-abortion "Catholic" Tom Barrett

Following in the tradition of Nancy Pelosi, baby-killing extremist, we now have Milk-Carton Tom Barrett, a Jesuit-educated ..........umnnhhhh........Catholic........serving up Moral Theo 101.

...Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tom Barrett is blasting his Republican challengers for not supporting embryonic stem cell research.

Barrett drew applause Wednesday when he spoke out in support of the research at a biotech conference in Middleton.

...Barrett says some of the best scientists in the world are doing that research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, which he called a "moral service" to the country.

As we mentioned, ESCR has exactly ZERO, nada, zip to show in the "results" column--except a lot of dead babies.

Evidently Tommy forgot Moral Theo's first principle: you may NEVER do wrong to effect a right. But then, it seems that Tommy Milk-Carton has forgotten a lot of principles on the way to securing elected office.

Mayor Barrett, meet your new Archbishop. :)

The Distributist Review

The Distributist Review has slowly become one of my favorite reads anywhere online. 

If you like Chesterton and Belloc on social issues, you will love the insight this magazine provides. 

One of the articles would definitely apply to the farming industry in Wisconsin.  Read Five Proposals for Distributist Agricultural Reform

Procession at Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help in Robinsonville, WI

TOWN OF GREEN BAY — Area Catholics celebrated a tradition that dates back more than a century Sunday, gathering for an annual pilgrimage at the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help in Robinsonville.

More than 1,000 Catholics attended an outdoor Mass and rosary procession to mark the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The event celebrates the belief that upon the end of her earthly life, Mary was assumed, body and soul, into heaven, said the Rev. John Doerfler, rector of the Shrine.

"This stands as a sign of hope for us," Doerfler said, "because we have that hope that what God has already done for Mary, he will do for us at the end of time."

The feast is one of the oldest and most solemn Marian feasts, dating back at least to the seventh century when its celebration already was established in Jerusalem and Rome, according to the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay. Catholicism reveres Mary because she was the mother of Jesus Christ.

The pilgrimage tradition at the shrine also is steeped in history, dating back to the 1870s following the infamous Peshtigo fire. The story goes that the 1871 fire spread to the Robinsonville area, and people took refuge in the shrine to pray. After the fire left the shrine unscathed, shrine founder Adele Brise — to whom the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared at the site in 1859 — began the pilgrimages to commemorate the assumption, Doerfler said.

Sunday's celebration began with a Mass, followed by a procession around the grounds of the shrine during which the rosary was prayed and a statue of the Virgin Mary carried. A special benediction followed to conclude the morning event.

Other major annual celebrations at the shrine commemorate the Peshtigo fire with an all-night prayer vigil each year on Oct. 8, as well as the 1859 Marian apparition with a Mass each year on Oct. 9. The assumption pilgrimage is the shrine's longest-running celebration.

"There are many people who come every year," Doerfler said. "It's an opportunity for us to really profess our belief and celebrate our hope in the redemption that Jesus Christ has won for us."

I found this interesting tidbit from the Shrine's website:
Father John Harden, S.J. (sic) once called the gathering of Mary and the Apostles in the upper room on Pentecost, "the first retreat." Under this light, we can see Our Lady as the first retreat director and a great guide in helping us to spend quality time with her Divine Son.

Coming this October, Fr. Peter Damian Fehlner, F.I., Rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, WI, will give a one day Marian retreat entitled “Mary’s Maternal Mediation, the Spiritual Crisis of our time and the Month of the Holy Rosary." Click the following link for full program information.

50th annual Bishop's Charities Game tonight at Lambeau Field

Bishop David Ricken gives the 2008 Most Valuable Player to Quarterback Aaron Rodgers prior to this year's Bishop's Charities Game at Lambeau Field August 22.
ESPN will televise the Colts contest in Week 3 to a national TV audience. This marks the eighth preseason contest between Indianapolis and Green Bay and the first since 1996. Also, the Colts game marks the 50th annual Bishop's Charities Game, a charitable contest initiated in 1961 by Vince Lombardi and the Diocese of Green Bay that has raised more than $3.4 million to date.

Bishop David Ricken tosses a pass to Packers wide receiver Greg Jennings during pregame festivities at the 49th annual Bishop's Charities Game.

For more than 30 years, the church(Diocese of Green Bay) handled much of the game’s business-related tasks, including game program and advertising sales, using a network of volunteers covering 14 Northeastern Wisconsin counties. The Packers assumed many of those tasks in 1994. 
Game Dope Sheet

By the way, Coach Mike McCarthy is a daily Mass goer like Coach Vince Lombardi was.  More on the Packers Catholic connection.

These great photos are from The Compass on Flickr
View the whole set


And humble enough to admit it. 

St Mary's in Tomah does NOT I repeat NOT have a yearly Polka Mass.  It seems the parish I was thinking of was St. Patrick's Church in SPARTA

Thank you to those who pointed out my error. 

Original post

St Louis, Holy King of France, ora pro nobis!

I highly recommend Christopher Check's article from This Rock, Oct 2009
With greater personal asceticism, the man who once loved a good party or a stirring theological discussion with his friend Thomas Aquinas now devoted himself more than ever to making France a place where Christian holiness would flower. He labored for peace and justice with such drive that he became the most sought-after arbiter in Europe. In negotiating peace with England, his advisors believed he was far too generous to Henry III. He outlawed private war and judicial combat. He coined the realm’s first gold coin in centuries, the écu, replete with Crusader imagery. He gave generously to the poor, feeding them from his own table and washing their feet. He supported the Church, building monasteries and leper hospitals. He encouraged large-scale displays of public piety, participating in no fewer than nine translations of saints’ relics. In Paris’s words, he was "the pinnacle of the kings on Earth." In G.K Chesterton’s, "the noblest knight of the Middle Ages."
Don't tell that to Brook Shields though....

Peace pipe...

I know! This photo caused me to do a double-take as well. The source is the Archdiocese of Milwaukee’s Catholic Herald and here is the official caption: “During Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki’s July 29 visit to the Kettle Moraine Correctional Institution in Plymouth, he celebrated Mass in the chapel on the grounds, and smoked the peace pipe during a Native American pipe and drum ceremony.”
Remember: inappropriate captions won’t be approved.

..... In that case, no comment...

What is a Sconnie?

Anne from Imprisoned in my Bones observed an interesting little tidbit and ask a fair question.
Anne said...
Also, I have to ask, what is a Sconnie?
 Anne is taking note of my bio on the right side:
A husband, father of three, Sconnie, Traditional minded Papist, covering local, state, and other issues affecting this guy.
 Well to answer in brief, Wikitionary defines Sconnie as
Proper noun

  1. (affectionate) A person or people from the U.S. state of Wisconsin.
 The Etymology!  Where does this word come from!?!  If we look through studies of ancient cave carvings we can see that originally this word came from an affectionate form of Wisconsinite; Wisconnie; which as its root appears our Wis-SCONNIE! 

Mystery solved!

If you want to see Sconnies in action, here is a clip...

Now for a deeper answer, I'd have to sit back and think about it..... which I may just do. 

Milwaukee Cathedral "Crucifix"

The seat of the Wisconsin Metropolitan Archbishop.
Fiberglass crucifix designed by Italian sculptors Arnaldo Pomodoro and Giuseppe Maraniell. The piece is topped with a crown of thorns, fourteen feet in diameter, which hovers over the figure of Christ.

laurieosman @ Flickr

ok2smile @ Flickr


How it got butchered.
Update: This link is not an endorsement to the "Rad-Trad" Tradition in Action site, but they do have some good articles.  Any viewers of the site should proceed with caution beyond the article I linked.

Despising Children: The Left's Heels

Yesterday we ran a post about the happiest warrior in Wisconsin, a boy with Spina Bifida who lost his 100-yard dash (the other child did not have SB), but loved every single second of his race.

We also posted an item noting with approval that a Federal judge stopped Obama's illegal ESCR funding. Killing babies, you know.

Now go to to the happy-warrior link and read the combox.

Draw your own conclusions. I drew mine in the title-box for this post. 
Here's the original post with comments.
The Spina Bifida Association of Wisconsin held its annual run/walk a few weeks ago.

One part of the festivities included races for the kids.

This guy[pictured right] lost his race. But don't tell him that.

And no, there wasn't a dry eye in the whole crowd.

Anonymous said...
Perhaps this youngster would have benefited from some stem cell research...ummmh just saying.

Dan said...
Umm, no. Learn something about spina bifda.
Dad29: A Winner. And You'll Cry

Wisconsin roundup

Green Bay
Diocese rejects groups attempt to save building
Green Bay Press Gazette
A group hoping to save a nearly 100-year-old form Catholic chancery from demolition is resigned to defeat.on its plan to stop demolition of the property and did not receive a counter offer. The group will hold a candlelight vigil in front of the building from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
Coalition president Jim Rivett said his group raised $10,000 in five days after finding out in May that the diocese planned to demolish the building. But it was not enough.
There is a Facebook group out there that has been giving updates on this one.

Architect selected for new St. Francis school
Herald Times Reporter
God was on the agenda to do one thing at Thursday's ceremony for St. Francis of Assisi's future P-8 Catholic school: to provide the sprinkling rite to bless the grounds, the Rev. Dan Felton said.

Parish officials announced in late October that an anonymous donor had pledged $12.3 million to build the new school, and that they had received 30 acres of land for the campus, currently soybean fields.

Joe Bound, director of the Department of Education for the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay, said Thursday that this will be the first new Catholic school built in the Green Bay diocese in at least 20 years.
Bishop Ricken founded order that runs Mystic Monk Coffee
FrZ News Service

Commenter from this Fr Z article noted that Bishop David Ricken now of Green Bay helped found the monks of Mystic Monk Coffee

La Crosse
St. Peter's Catholic Church in Tilden celebrates 150 years - Bishop Callahan rides buggy to church.
WEAU 13 - Eau Claire - Video Warning - Biretta alert!
Just as their faithful ancestors did with the first bishop of the La Crosse Diocese more than a century ago, members of St. Peter's Catholic Church in Tilden walked this road to Mass Sunday morning, with newly installed Bishop Callahan following behind in a horse and buggy.

As the church celebrated its 150th anniversary, members created a small museum honoring its rich heritage, which began with German immigrants.

“They had such a rough ride when they came over on the ship that they made a vow to the Blessed Virgin that they would build a church here in her honor,” Secraw describes. “So we had a church even before there was a Diocese of LaCrosse.”

The diocese was founded 8 years after St. Peter’s parish.

As the bishop celebrated Mass and confirmed young people in the parish, Father William Felix says he took time to reflect on his own long history here.

“To be with these people for 22 years, I baptized the kids that are now nearly preparing for marriage,” he says with a smile. 

Bishop Christensen recently lambasted local media coverage of the priest scandals.   

Kohl's and Planned Parenthood: Here's the proof

First, thanks to everyone who has called or emailed Kohl’s in the past couple days to express displeasure with Kohl’s support of Planned Parenthood.

Many of you have received an email response from Kohl’s, stating:

Thank you for contacting us directly with your concerns.

After receiving your e-mail, I researched your concerns about any involvement we may have with Planned Parenthood. Our Community Relations department confirmed that Kohl’s does not have a corporate partnership with Planned Parenthood. I reviewed their annual report and verified that Kohl’s is not listed as a partner. Additionally, we have not sponsored any Associates in Action (formerly A-Team) events with Planned Parenthood within the last 24 months.

We appreciate the time you took to contact us and look forward to serving you again.

We have found a link between Planned Parenthood and Kohl’s, however. Kohl’s is listed as a sponsor in the $500-999 level and donated items to support the services of Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernardino Counties [PPOSBC]. Click here to view on PPOSBC’s website.

We urge you to continue contacting Kohl’s! Provide the above link as proof. In 2008-09, PPOSBC performed 4,611 abortions and provided 37,870 doses of “emergency contraception.” The message to be sent to Kohl’s is clear: We will take our money elsewhere rather than support an organization involved in the extermination of our future.
ProLife Wisconsin

Minnesota based Target does not contribute to Planned Parenthood.


Kohl’s: No support of Planned Parenthood will occur, from any level of the company

Marian Symposium 2010

A great conference at last weekends Marian Symposium hosted by the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  Sorry, but I didn't realize the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate were broadcasting the whole thing live on

So what's the big deal?  Some conference on Mary.  Yeah, I pray to her, I get it.

Mary is more than just another saint.  Her pivotal and necessary role in salvation history is worth more attention.  To understand the Faithful Daughter of the Father, the Spouse of the Holy Spirit, the Mother of God, is to come to understand God more fully, and especially Jesus Christ our Crucified King.  Like St John at the foot of the Cross we must take her into our homes, as the Diocese of La Crosse and the state of Wisconsin have done with this Shrine.

If you want to "get" what it is all about I recommend Dr. Mark Miravalle's talk from this year's conference.  All the talks are recorded and DVDs of each talk can be purchased.  I'm in the process of finding out if we can get the audio in MP3 format posted online.  The only way right now to get the conference DVD would be to call the Shrine and order it over the phone.  You might have to mail a check in first.  They do have the equipment at the Shrine to produce the DVDs.

Here's some photos.
Drew Mariani leads the rosary
Cardinal Martínez
 Dr. Miravalle
 Drew Mariani
Archbishop Burke greeting after Mass
And what we are praying for...

Homicidal maniac from Madison pays for 19,000 abortions, not enough, wants more

MADISON — At all hours, strangers phone Anne Nicol Gaylor's Madison home, always desperate.

The caller one recent morning was a middle-aged woman with a 14-year-old pregnant daughter. [I hope you contacted authorities to investigate?  Was this young of a girl assaulted by an older man??]

"What clinic will she be using?" asked Gaylor, 83, jotting down the response and the cost of a second-trimester abortion ($875).

"If we helped with $300, do you think you could find the rest?" Gaylor asked.

After the call, Gaylor opened a checkbook for the Women's Medical Fund, a Madison nonprofit that has helped pay for abortions for 34 years. Gaylor has written every check for every abortion.

This was No. 18,986. [F***ing incredible]

Controversial figure [Do you mean mass murderer?]

Gaylor is well-known for leading the Freedom From Religion Foundation in Madison[LOL, go figure!  Change the title to Freedom from Life Foundation] for decades. Less known is her work with the Women's Medical Fund[To Kill Defenseless Children], which she co-founded in 1976, the same year she helped start the foundation.

The fund's sole purpose is to pay for abortions.  [So what if a women wanted money to pay for a birth???] Last year, it paid out $162,202, about 75 percent of which came from individual donors, the rest from foundations.

There is no office and no paid staff. Gaylor, whose title is administrator, takes all of the calls — some 800 a year — at her dining room table on her home phone, the same one her four children and two granddaughters reach her on. There is no answering machine.

"It would burden anyone else to deal with all those calls," said her husband, Paul Gaylor, 84, a former vice president for a building maintenance company. "But she listens to every woman and cares for every single one of them."

The phone number isn't widely circulated. Women get referred from [wealthy] clinics, doctors and nurses.

"When you give money away, people find you," said Anne Nicol Gaylor, a petite woman with grayish-white hair and a soft voice. [Well at least her voice is soft, otherwise I'd think she was a monster!]

'All about the child' [WTF?!]

The Supreme Court legalized abortion three years before the fund began, but many women simply couldn't afford the procedure, said Bob West, 82, of Madison, a professor emeritus of chemistry and co-founder of the fund with his wife, Margaret West, now deceased, and Gaylor. The three had become friends through the Madison chapter of the group Zero Population Growth. [LOL!  Okay well that explains this whole thing finally.  They don't care about any of the people involved, after all they are destroying the planet.  Do they pay for forced abortions too?]

"For me, it was all about the child," he said. "In the kind of world I want to live in, all children would be wanted." [By whom?  Society wants children, it's just fruit loops like you who want them dead]

Gaylor said her motivation came from a doctor who told her about a girl who was raped by her father and had to drop out of high school to raise the child. "Those kind of stories are so numerous and so tragic," Gaylor said. [ does abortion un-rape the girl?]

She sends out fundraising letters at least once a year, often tying the appeal to a significant event, such as Mother's Day.

"Of the 632 women the fund has helped so far this year, 147 were teenagers," Gaylor wrote to donors last Thanksgiving. "Of these, nine were only 13 years old, and one, not yet a teen, was just 12!" [I hope you can live with the psychological and health consequences those teenage girls must now live with Mrs. Gaylor.]

Gaylor used the occasion of her 80th birthday to hold a fundraising party for the fund at the Madison home of Dr. Dennis Christensen, an abortion provider who has since retired. [Hmm, no conflict of interest here.]  Gaylor sent invitations far afield, including one to a well-to-do woman in California she'd never met but who had donated to the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

The woman sent her regrets and a $20,000 check.

The other side

Anti-abortion activists have long been aware of the fund.

"It's a stark example of misguided compassion that serves as discrimination of the worst kind," said Peggy Hamill, state director of Pro-Life Wisconsin. "To finance extermination of pre-born children because those children would have been brought up poor is deplorable." [Exactly, this is Margaret Sanger to a T.  Exterminate the poor and minorities, Mrs Gaylor doesn't want to have to look at those filthy half humans]
Gaylor said no one is chasing down low-income pregnant woman. They're simply the ones who come to her. "If that's discrimination, so be it," she said. She thinks critics would view the fund differently if they heard the calls.

"We get calls, too," counters Sue Armacost, legislative director for Wisconsin Right to Life. "We understand how heartbreaking some situations are, but the answer is not urging and assisting a woman to destroy her child." [How many of those teenagers committed suicide I wonder?]

Gaylor does not mention slowing down. "My regret is that we don't have $1 million a year to give away so that we could help more women," she said.  [Homicidal maniac.]

The rest from Wisconsin State Journal
Women seeking information about the fund should inquire at a clinic that provides abortions. The fund can be reached at P.O. Box 248, Madison, WI 53701.

Who is the new priest at St Mary's church in Tomah, WI

I saw someone came across my blog searching on this.  I don't know and there has not been any appointment yet publicly by the diocese(I checked the latest appointments and no mention). 

I did heard they have a yearly Polka Mass in Tomah.... 

Just sayin....

UPDATE: My sincerest apologies!  The Church being referred to was SPARTA not Tomah.  There's no Polka Masses in Tomah, thanks be to God!  Public Correction Here

Bishop Christensen of Superior addresses critics

Why the Silence?

In a recent conversation a friend of mine was commenting on the sizeable number of secular newspaper articles that center on the topic of sexual abuse by clergy. He was perplexed by the fact that there have not been more responses made by the Church in regard to some of the assumptions made by the papers that he knows to be either exaggerated or false. Well aware of his frustration, which is shared by many, I began to explain the reasons for the absence of rebuttals to the media as I see it.

First of all, doing so makes the Church look either defensive or calloused, as if the leadership of the Church is out to protect itself.  There is no question that there have been priests who have sexually abused minors. Many innocent victims and their families have been directly or indirectly wounded and scarred by such behavior. There is no denying this fact. In response to the damaging actions of some of the clergy, since the Charter for the Protection of Children was established in 2002, the Catholic Church has gone well beyond any other institution in setting up safe-guards to protect our young from such horrendous, sinful behavior.

What we often fail to remember is that the Church, like the rest of society, in regard to the disciplinary action of its members was motivated by the social beliefs and sciences of its time.  Up until the 1980s it was believed that pedophiles (pre-pubescent) and ephebophiles (post-pubescent) could be rehabilitated and reinstated into the institutions they served. This was true not only for ministers of other Christian and non-Christian denominations, but also for secular institutions, such as teachers in our public school systems.  As I have often heard it said and know it to be true, the framework in which we were making judgments was based on the knowledge of the time we made them. As an example of context, it would be like someone suing the Ford Motor Company today for a wrongful death of a grandfather when his airbag failed to deploy 70 years ago. The knowledge gained and serving us today in the realm of psychosexual sciences is far more understood than it was even twenty years ago. That which is sometimes referred to as “cover up” by the Church was nothing more than a lack of knowledge of what dangers were being done and what treatments could or could not be administered for rehabilitation.

Another reason for the lack of response to the secular press could be caused by a misguided prejudice against the Catholic Church for whatever reason. There is no doubt that the Catholic Church makes the front-page headlines in this regard. A while back, when I asked a prominent reporter from CNN, why he thought this was the case, he stated it is so because we are such a large institution.  I said that I believe it is the case because we are the only institution in the entire world that can speak with one voice on issues of faith and morals. No other institution in the world can offer teaching and guidance with the authority of the Catholic Church. And no other institution in the world has the ability to speak with such a unified voice. As I said to the reporter, not everyone likes such a voice, to be reminded of the existence of God or to have his or her conscience tweaked.  If you can silence the voice by destroying the Church’s credibility it would serve as a relief for some. 

At the end of our conversation I thanked the CNN reporter for the attention given to these matters. It may sound strange, but in many ways when there is credibility of abuse, the reporting reminds us of the contrast of what is expected by the Church.  We should be shocked by such contrary behavior to our beliefs. The day that reporting such information is not seen as horror will be the day that the Church has lost its message of the Gospel. It is newsworthy because it is scandalous behavior and always will stand in contradiction to the belief of our Catholic Church.

What I find difficult is when our local paper misquotes or exaggerates information. This frustration is exasperated when they are unwilling to make corrections and print the facts. Recently, our diocesan office responded to misinformation printed in our local Duluth paper. The paper made no corrections or points of clarifications. They stated that the Diocese of Superior had paid out nearly 3 million dollars in one settlement in 1989. I know differently. Since 1950, there have been 546 priests serving in our Diocese. Tragically, 12 of these priests during the past 60 years have what seem to be credible allegations of pedophilia or ephebophilia. That is 2.2 percent of our priest population in the Superior Diocese which is well below the national average of males who sexually abuse children. Eight of these priests are now deceased and the other four are no longer serving in active ministry.  During this same period of time, the Diocese of Superior has been responsible for making settlements on 4 cases, paying a total of $135,000 from our own diocesan funds directly to victims. Our insurance companies covered other costs. This is nowhere near the amount as reported in the paper.

The third reason that the Church oftentimes seems silent in offering corrections or rebuttals to the media is because those who have been abused by priests have asked that their names and cases never be mentioned to others. These are legal agreements, set up by the Church and to be honored by the Church as requested by those abused. These confidentiality agreements are put in place in order to protect the good names and reputations of those abused. Unfortunately not all reporters or advocate groups appreciate this fact. Sometimes these groups, although they speak in terms of reconciliation, are more interested in retaliation against the Church in general. 

All this being said, as Catholics we are meeting the situation of our times for our own institution, while the sexual abuse of minors is running rampant throughout society. As the Church grows stronger in the knowledge and care of the young, its leaders and congregations will better serve as educators and reconcilers for our religious and civic communities. This is not a pleasant journey, but to help expose and heal the sin of sexual abuse throughout our society is what we are called to do at this time in our history. 
And at times, although we may be seemingly silent in response to the media, we as a Church are doing all that we can to correct our faults and to help others in society to deal with their similar issues in this regard. May Our Lord bless all who suffer from abuse with his healing presence, and strengthen all the faithful to serve as ministers of his pure love.
Superior Catholic Herald

Archbishop Listecki Decries Decision Striking Down California Marriage Law

Upon hearing of the August 4th federal judge's decision to overturn California voters' 2008 initiative that protected marriage as the union of one man and one woman, Most Reverend Jerome E. Listecki, archbishop of Milwaukee, made the following statement.

“It is unfortunate that a federal judge in San Francisco struck down California voter-approved ban on same sex marriage. I am sure bishops and concerned citizens who worry about the arbitrary changes being made to attempt to alter the nature of marriage will voice similar sentiments. Archbishop Joseph Kurz of Louisville, chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Ad Hoc Committee for the Defense of Marriage, has already shared the following thoughts.

'Marriage – the union of one man and one woman – is a unique, irreplaceable institution. The very fabric of our society depends upon it. Nothing compares to the exclusive and permanent union of husband and wife. The state has a duty to employ the civil law to reinforce – and, indeed, to privilege uniquely – this vital institution of civil society. The reasons to support marriage by law are countless, not least to protect the unique place of husbands and wives, the indispensable role of fathers and mothers, and the rights of children, who are often the most vulnerable among us.'

Archbishop Listecki also added, "All of us should be vigilant in any attempt, by the state, to usurp our natural and God-given rights.

"Let us pray to God for marriage and family.”

On August 4, the USCCB released a statement from Cardinal Francis George, president of the USCCB, decrying the August 4th decision.

“Marriage between a man and a woman is the bedrock of any society. The misuse of law to change the nature of marriage undermines the common good,” Cardinal George said. “It is tragic that a federal judge would overturn the clear and expressed will of the people in their support for the institution of marriage. No court of civil law has the authority to reach into areas of human experience that nature itself has defined.”

 Archdiocese of Milwaukee  ... I couldn't find it in the diocesan newspaper online.
HT The Catholic Times

Video: Fr. Mitch Pacwa, S.J. with Abp Raymond L Burke

Thanks to EWTN's new YouTube channel, here is that excellent interview with Archbishop Raymond L Burke. It's the full show, so save it for when you have time. In it, he talks about his job as Prefect for the Signatura, and he goes indepth on Fr. John A. Hardon's cause.

Thanks to Diane @ Te Deum laudamus.  Get well soon.

Missa Cantata at St. Mary's in Altoona, WI

ALTOONA – Approximately 50 people gathered at St. Mary Parish in Altoona Aug. 15 for the Missa Cantata, or sung version of the old liturgy in Latin. St. Mary’s parishioners, as well as members of other area parishes, were represented. The celebrant of the Mass was Father Justin Kizewski of Holy Ghost Parish in Chippewa Falls, while the cantor was Father Joseph Redfern, the parochial administrator of St. Mary Parish.

Mark Biolo of St. Mary Parish was the emcee, while Joe Foster and Don Valois served. Joshua Gallagher was the organist. According to Biolo, the job of the emcee is to “assist the priest and make sure the altar servers are where they are supposed to be.”

An oblate of the Camaldolese Benedictines, Biolo noted that the “Missa Cantata is very different from the low Mass” in Latin, which has been celebrated at St. Mary’s before. The servers and musicians had studied and practiced for months in anticipation of the event. [The Mass is meant to be sung.  The Low Mass was a temporary solution for reasons like many Requium Massesor lack of a choir.]

“It is a real privilege to celebrate the extraordinary form of the Mass,” Father Kizewski said. During his homily, which was in English, Father Kizewski focused on the Assumption of Our Lady into heaven, drawing the important distinction between latria, or the worship we offer to God alone, and dulia, which is the honor we afford to Mary and the saints. Hyperdulia, or a heightened form of dulia, belongs to Mary alone.

Noting that Catholics are often accused of “worshipping” Mary, Father Kizewski clarified that this is not the case, and at the same time emphasized the unique place that Mary holds in salvation history.

“The Assumption was the perfect completion to her earthly role,” he said.

Alma Koenig a parishioner at St. Mary’s attended the Mass with her husband, Jim, her 4- year-old daughter Sofia and some friends.

“Growing up in Mexico City,” Koenig said, “I had never gone to a Latin Mass before. I wanted to experience it, and it’s very beautiful. Some of the Latin words are very similar to the Spanish, so there were parts I understood, but I didn’t follow all of it.”

Sofia also seemed to relish the experience. Her daughter, Koenig said, had been reluctant to leave church several days before while Father Redfern was practicing his singing.

Father Redfern has both background and a strong interest in Gregorian chant, tracing back to the mid-1990s when he used to go to a “parish in Sydney where they sung the high Mass.  I sang in the choir, but no one explained it to me. I learned by singing with people who knew what they were doing.” Then, he studied with a cantor who taught him the natural scale. “But you don’t really have to be a musician to sing Gregorian chant,” he said. “In my case, I didn’t even know I could sing. It’s a talent from God, and it’s my job to use it for His glory.” Gregorian chant itself, Father Redfern said, citing Vatican II, still has a “pride of place” in the Roman liturgy.

“Gregory the Great was the last of the western Church fathers,” he said. “Because he promoted the use of chant in the liturgy, it got named after him, but the chanting itself predates him. The written form goes back to the ninth or 10th century but it was sung before that. There’s antiquity there.”

In his Sunday homily the week before, Father Redfern elaborated on the same theme, stating, “Our Holy Father, Benedict XVI, who is concerned with the loss of a Catholic culture, has mentioned the importance of preserving our Catholic heritage of sacred music, Gregorian chant in particular. In fact, Gregorian chant provides us a sense of permanence in the liturgy … a sense of continuity with our past and stability in a changing world.”

Father Redfern has been introducing Gregorian chant at St. Mary Parish not only in the sung Latin Mass, but also in certain parts of the regular English Masses.

“Most people know the Agnus Dei or the Sanctus,” he said, “but they think that’s all there is.”

To facilitate the use of Gregorian chant in the liturgy, Father Redfern produced a CD that parishioners could take with them and learn at home, or in the car. Some of the cantors and musicians from the parish assisted Father Redfern with producing the CD, which took a few days to produce.

“If you make it singable and make it memorable,” Father Redfern said, “it will work. Repetition is important. Most people can sing a little bit, and they’ll do it if you help them feel comfortable.”

Gregorian chant is also known as plainchant, because it is traditionally unaccompanied, is sung one note at a time and includes no harmonizing.

Father Redfern plans to continue the renewal of sacred music at St. Mary Parish and to build up attendance at the Latin Masses. “What I’m doing here isn’t revolutionary,” he said.

“There is no reason the same type of thing couldn’t be done at other parishes as well. All it takes is a little bit of musical background and the energy to get going. The liturgy is meant to be the most beautiful thing this side of Heaven.”
 The Catholic Times

Chicago native Bishop Callahan is a Packer fan?

CHIPPEWA FALLS – Bishop William P. Callahan – by birth a Chicagoan – might have claimed allegiance to the Chicago Bears in an exclusive interview published in the June 24 issue of the The Catholic Times, but Father Justin Kizewski knows for a fact that the bishop has cheered for the Packers.

“I’ll swear by it,” said Father Kizewski, chaplain at McDonell High School and associate pastor at Holy Ghost Parish in Chippewa Falls and St. Bridget in Springfield. “I saw it with my own two eyes.”

The occasion was Thanksgiving 2007 at the Pontifical North American College in Rome. Father Kizewski, a die-hard Packers fan and a seminarian studying there, had worked assiduously to get a television in the refectory, so that the seminarians and their guests could watch a replay of the Packers-Lions game during the college’s traditional Thanksgiving dinner.

Then-Father Callahan was a spiritual director at the North American College at the time, but a few days earlier news had reached the college that Pope Benedict XVI had appointed the priest to be an auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. The bishop-designate was, of course, back in Wisconsin for the announcement. Nobody expected him in Rome for Thanksgiving dinner.

Father Kizewski remembers how everybody in the refectory rose to applaud the newly appointed bishop when he unexpectedly walked into the room. The talk at dinner might have been about the guest-of-honor’s new assignment, Father Kizewski admitted, but he remembers clearly that Bishop Callahan’s eyes were on the television from time to time, and that he cheered when the Packers – not the Lions – were playing well.
The Catholic Times
Truly scandalous indeed!!!

The Catholic Times has their special edition online as well.

Photo: CT/Milwaukee Catholic Herald file photo
Ellen Callahan helps her son, William, with his vestments on the day he was ordained a priest, April 30, 1977. He was ordained by Archbishop William E. Cousins at the Basilica of St. Josaphat in Milwaukee.

Also I should confess, I know this next culprit:
His[Callahan] very meaningful homily was 25 minutes long on Aug. 11, but it was later on – during the new bishop’s words of thanks at the end of the Installation Mass – that one particularly outspoken member of the faithful in attendance finally cut him off.

This infant’s cry distinctly pealed through the packed cathedral at the end of the two-and-a-half hour liturgy. The new bishop looked up with a smile and concluded his remarks – to chuckles from those in attendance – with these words: “Yeah, that’s right. Let’s go!” 
 Yes, the screamer has as big of a mouth like his father...

Diocese of Winona Harvest Mass

I just happened to check the Diocese of Winona's website and found video from Sunday's 'Harvest Mass.'  Yes, nothing like a rousing round of "Gather Us In," I know you are visualizing me singing at home right now.

Seriously though, here's the first video, it looks like they only uploaded the procession.  Maybe Bishop John Quinn's homily will be uploaded later.

MilNewsBuzz: Is Milwaukee’s priest shortage slowing?

Church officials are hoping an increase in the number of priests graduating from the Milwaukee Archdiocese’s St. Francis de Sales Seminary will help slow Milwaukee’s growing priest shortage. But it might not be enough as priests ordained during the 1960s and 1970s, when the church experienced tremendous growth, begin to retire.

The Archdiocese, which spans 210 parishes in ten counties in Southeastern Wisconsin, greeted the ordination of six seminary graduates last year as the sudden reversal of a long drought. It was the largest class to graduate in 17 years. Previous classes produced just one or even no new priests. [Want to know why?  Read Good Bye, Good Men]

This year, the seminary ordained almost as many new clergy for the Archdiocese. Five graduates were ordained. Father Don Hying, seminary rector, says he expects six ordinations next year, then five and potentially a record seven in 2013. They would be arriving just in time, as retirements continue to drive down the ranks of clergy in Milwaukee and around the country.  [Lets do some math.  Arch Dolan arrived in Milwaukee in 2002.  It takes about 8 years of schooling.  Yes that's about right] 

“We’re still going to decline in numbers, especially when those ordained in the 1960s and 1970s retire or die,” he says. “We’re going to go down from where we are, but if we can continue to ordain six to 10 men a year, it will stabilize.”

For the past two years, for each priest who has retired or died, another has come in to take his place. But about five percent of the Archdiocese’s parishes lack a priest, according to Hying. Elsewhere in the country, particularly in rural areas, the figure is several times higher. [A tribute to the faith of the Milwaukee area Catholic community]

The national priest shortage was first studied in detail in the 1990s by a UW-Madison sociologist and former priest, Richard Schoenherr, who predicted, with the help of a team of researchers at a collaborator at Brigham Young University, that priests assigned to a diocese would drop 40 percent between 1966 and 2005. The estimate has largely proven accurate and was later extended to predict a 46 percent drop by 2015. [No really, read Good Bye, Good Men.  Liberals purposefully withheld non-liberal men from seminary and hoped a "shortage" of priests would bring about ordination of women and the Christ-like discipline of priestly celibacy.]

The reasons fewer are entering the priesthood are varied. High recruitment that began in the Great Depression and continued through World War II, the 1960 and the 1970s has proven impossible to sustain. (In 1956, the St. Francis seminary graduated 48 priests.) Some have blamed the clergy abuse scandals of more recent years. [No, no, really.  If you want the answers read it.]

“We’re going through a paradigm shift in many ways, not just in religion but in politics, economics; everything is fundamentally shifting in many ways,” Hying says. “Men becoming priests today is much more a radical choice because it’s not something necessarily supported by the culture.” [... Umm, I'm pretty sure Catholics have never been embraced with open arms in this country.  Ever heard of the Know-Nothings?]

In Milwaukee and around the country, mass attendance and the church’s reputation took major hits following the abuse scandals. In 2006, Milwaukee Magazine reported that parishioner attendance at weekend mass in the Archdiocese had dropped from 40 percent in the early 1990s to just 29 percent. Donations declined as well.  [If I was a parishioner of St John's Cathedral, I'm not sure I could still go to Mass either]

Is marriage the answer?

Some argue that relaxing rules on celibacy within the Roman Catholic Church and allowing priests to marry would alleviate the clergy shortage. [How are priestly numbers for Eastern Catholics whom have always had the option of marriage?]

Generally, a man cannot enter the priesthood if he intends to marry. But there’s an exception. Since the 1980s, if a married man has been previously ordained within another Christian religion, he can apply to become a Catholic priest. The applications are considered on a case-by-case basis. Some say[who?] the exception was created in response to a decline in priests entering seminaries.

Father Martin Barnum of Mundelein Seminary in Chicago estimates there are only about 250 married Catholic priests in the nation. There are none in the Milwaukee Archdiocese, he says, and none in the Chicago Archdiocese either. [And Milwaukee's numbers are better than the national average... so go figure]

But Milwaukee had one in 2008. Father Michael Scheip, a former Lutheran minister who became a priest in 1992, came to the Milwaukee Archdiocese in 2008 from Florida with a wife and five boys. Scheip served in the Archdiocese for about a year then returned to Florida, reportedly because he didn’t like the winters here. [A witch hunt for married clergy?  I wonder if that works for liberal clergy as well....]

David Backes, a UW-Milwaukee journalism professor and a deacon within the Archdiocese, says the issue is larger than the question of celibacy. “We’d get more (priests) if they could marry[I sincerely doubt it], but if you look at some of the main line Protestants that have married clergy and women pastors, their numbers have been shrinking too. It’s a larger problem of commitment,” he says. [Great point]