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      October  2012 E-Newsletter
  (Newsletter Archive)
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In This Issue
"Council mothers" paved way for female theologians
Priesthood Sunday celebratins growing
Men considering priesthood decline
Vatican advisor calls for married priests
"Support the Sisters" update
Book Review: "Women Deacons Past, Presnt and Future"
FutureChurch lauded for Cleveland parish victories
Major shift in parishes predicted
Parish closing and appeals news
Other Catholic news

Notable and Quotable: 


The rules for choosing bishops are so rigid that as soon as candidates emerge who, say, stand up for the pill, or for the ordination of women, they are struck off the list...The only way for newspaperreform is from the bottom up...The priests and others in positions of responsibility need to stop being so subservient, to organize themselves and say that there are certain things that they simply will not put up with anymore. (professor Hans Kung) Read more...    


  Honor Your Parish Priest

   Pray to Open Ordination

   Priesthood Sunday

          Oct 28, 2012  


More Info here 

Free organizing kit here

Upcoming  Events 

October 28: National Priesthood Sunday Special FutureChurch prayer services honor your parish priest and pray for a married priesthood and women deacons. More info here.


November 10, Louisville, KY: Prayer Service:Celebrating the Women of Vatican II with FutureChurch program coordinator, Liz England. Call To Action National Conference. 

Saturday 7:45-8:30 McCreary Suite Tower Info at  www.cta-usa.org 


November 9-11, 2012. Louisville, KY: Galt House Call To Action National Conference Justice Rising. Civil rights legend, Diane Nash; theologian and spiritual activist, Matthew Fox; inter-faith justice advocate, Imam Mohammed Abdul-Azeez; counselors and authors, Fran Ferder & John Heagle and many more!...Info at www.cta-usa.org

Wednesday, January 16, 2013.
Columbus, Ohio Women Officeholders in the Early Church. with Sr. Chris Schenk CSJ. 7 pm Maple Grove United Methodist Church (7 W Henderson Rd, Columbus, OH 43214). Contact tlupia@aol.com


Back by Popular Demand!


 Journey Of Discovery:   

Rome & Ostia


A Pilgrimage to Archaeological Sites of

Women Leaders in the Early Church


March 14 - 21, 2013


Discover  frescos, mosaics and artifacts of early Christian women who were leaders of important Christian communities in Rome.  


Dr. Carolyn Osiek RSCJ, Educational Director


Sr. Christine Schenk CSJ, Spiritual Director  


$2,949 ALL INCLUSIVE! from New York


Complete info and flyer at   


Free Sample!  
Women and the Word
for Educators: 

Essays, prayer services and student work sheets about notable women such as Prisca, Phoebe, Dorothy Day and St. Mary of Magdala. 

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email:  info@futurechurch.org

To  Purchase A celebrating Women Women Witnesses packet
click here

Spanish Resources here

A Million Voices
A Million Voices: Gospel Nonviolence for the Life of the Church
Educates about Gospel nonviolence when a Catholic's right and responsibility to speak on a "matter concerning the good of the Church" (Canon 212.2) is violated. ($5.00)

Info and download here 

So All Can Be at the Table
women deacon
Optional Celibacy
and Women Deacons

To send an electronic postcard asking to restore women deacons, 
click here 

To send an electronic postcard asking to restore optional celibacy

click here

To sign Open Letter to US Bishops

click here


More info... 

Organize to keep
arishes Open! SOPC image

Download Free Canonical Appeal Resources here

Order the Save Our Parish Community packet

 Women Leaders in Early Christianity CD and Presenter's Guide
Includes 43 images of catacomb frescos and sarcophagi friezes of early women leaders and an extensively researched 16 page presenter's guide. Click here to order

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Magdala Market Online Store

Women and the Word education/advocacy kit
(Free download)

This free kit includes tools that help parishes, small faith communities, schools and dioceses make visible the rich tradition of women leaders in the Church.
Sample educational programs on women in scripture and church history, articles by scholars and activists and sample postcard and background info about women deacons also included.
Download here...


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Watch original videos of the opening of Vatican II on October 11, 1962.  


   Vaticanum Secundum - I     (3.33 min)  

   Vaticanum Secundum - II   (2.47 min)  

   Vaticanum Secundum - III  (7:47 min)    


Learn: Video lecture by John O' Malley SJ

   "What Happened at Vatican II" (1hr. 12 min)    


REFLECT on what Vatican II means today  

     Video: Vatican II Project (5:09 min) 


Vatican II's call for renewal did not break with tradition, pope says  Pope Benedict fondly recalled the council, saying it was a time that was "so vivacious, rich and fruitful."He praised Blessed John XXIII's usage of the term "aggiornamento" or "renewal" for the church, even though, he said, it's still a topic of heated and endless debate. "But I am convinced that the insight Blessed John XXIII epitomized with this word was and still is accurate," he said. Read more...  


At anniversary Mass, pope recalls 'authentic spirit' of

Vatican II


The Council's "mothers" paved way for female theologians.  "Although the Second Vatican Council may initially come across as a chauvinist event, nothing was quite the same after the Council, even for women. Like the laity, women did not participate actively in the Council. The 23 women invited by Paul VI  to attend Council proceedings in 1964, were simply members of the audience with no right to speak.  

  mothers at Vatican II

But historical research has revealed that these women, who had to wear a black veil and were called "mothers" by the Synod Fathers, were in fact instrumental in ensuring that the Second Vatican Council addressed issues relating to the status of women and their rights in the Catholic Church. It is partly because of them that there are female theologians in the Catholic Church today: thanks to the Council the male monopoly on theology ended. Read more..  


Celebrate the Women of Vatican II: CTA National Conference Galt House, Louisville, KY.  Saturday November 10 7:45-8:30. Prayer service by Liz England, FutureChurch program coordinator. More info 


Priesthood Sunday Celebrations Growing. In late October, hundreds of faithful Catholics will honor their parish priests and at the same time pray for a return to the tradition of a married priesthood in the Latin rite of the Roman Catholic Church.  At this writing FutureChurch has helped organize sixty-six celebrations in cities all over the US including five internationally in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Scotland, and the Netherlands. Celebrations are held in parishes and private homes on or around this Sunday, October 28, Priesthood Sunday.  


See the list of celebrations from people who are willing to make them public OR


Send us information about your celebration.


AND  Send Postcards to Rome:

About Optional Celibacy 

About Women Deacons    


Download "So All Can Be At the Table" Organizing Kit   


Study shows decline in men considering priestly vocations, mandatory celibacy a deterrent.  In a survey of Catholics 14 and older, about 12 percent of males said they had considered a religious vocation at least "a little seriously." At first glance, the recent study by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University would seem to be positive news.  


However compared to previous studies conducted by CARA, the percent of men considering priesthood is declining.   In 2003, 20 percent reported considering priestly vocation. This dropped to 17 percent in 2008. In the newest study, of the men who never considered a priestly vocation, 55 percent identified the desire to be father and 49 percent identified the celibacy requirement as deterrents. Read more...  



Leading Vatican advisor calls for married priests A leading British academic has said the Catholic Church urgently needs to overturn its centuries-old ban on ordaining married men to ease the shortage of priests and better relate to the faithful. Writing recently in The Tablet, John Haldane, Professor of philosophy at the University of St Andrews and an advisor to the Pontifical Council of Culture said: "The time is overdue to admit married men to (shortened) formation and ordination." Read more...  


Australian professor and former priests calls for married clergy Australian Professor Des Cahill says the Victorian government should amend the Equal Opportunity Act to remove the exemption allowing religious organizations to bar people from serving in the Catholic church because of their marital status. Cahill believes allowing a married clergy could be the "circuit breaker" needed to change the whole culture of what he called "celibate caste clericalism." Cahill is a former priest. Read more...


Sign:  Open Letter to US Bishops 


Send Postcards to Rome:

About Optional Celibacy 

About Women Deacons    


Download "So All Can Be At the Table" Organizing Kit   



Update on "Support the Sisters" Ever since mid-April, when the Vatican issued a mandate against the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, an historic number of signatures, letters, vigils, prayers, donations and other actions have reverberated around the country. The support of people like you meant everything to the sisters and we have reason to believe Rome took notice. The Nun Justice Project had an important role to play in this effort. Now we must stay vigilant. The Nun Justice Project coalition is monitoring the situation closely and will let you know of ways to support the sisters as the process unfolds.


Here is a timeline of project actions and what has been accomplished.  


If you have not already, now would be a good time to write to Archbishop Vigano, the Papal Nuncio. You can find sample letters here.  



LCWR Takes First Step in Responding to CDF Mandate  Video of LCWR Assembly  

Bishops, religious must dialogue synod speakers say  (Catholic News Service)   

Sisters' friend at the Vatican named head of Indianapolis archdiocese (NCR)  

Transfers fuel doubts about Vatican's line on sex abuse, US nuns (NCR)

Vatican's doctrinal head: LCWR must not be 'anti-Rome' (NCR) 


View photos of hundred of national vigils here 

Read FutureChurch Statement on mandate here  


Book Review: Women Deacons: Past, Present and Future Phyllis Zagano, Gary Macy and Bill Ditewig, authors of Women Deacons: Past, Present, Future,  have done a great women deacon service to Catholics everywhere. They offer  a treasure trove of information on the history, theology and implications of women deacons for the modern church in an approachable and understandable format. Read more..,



Retired auxiliary bishop praises women deacons  


Canon Lawyer publicly affirms possibility of female deacons


Download Women Deacons: Why Not Now? Education/Advocacy  resource  

Read more about women deacon effort   and  order a packet  


Send an Electronic Postcard to Rome  here! 


Circulate paper postcards  Download a template or order free postcards.


Channel 5 Lauds FutureChurch role in Cleveland Parish Victories  

  channel 5 image  

View Channel 5 video here.. 


Reopened St. Emeric parish succeeds in push to reappoint original pastor "Our parish is rejoicing in the news," parishioner and church organist Miklos Peller said. "There are tears of joy."St. Emeric will become the last of 11 churches in the diocese to reopen after the Vatican decreed in March   that Cleveland Bishop Lennon did not follow proper procedures or present sound reasons for closing them. Lennon had originally refused the parish's request to appoint the former pastorthe Rev. Sandor Siklodi who had served the parish for 24 years but reversed himself after Peller and others appealed to Rome. "We're most grateful to the Vatican for standing by the side of our parishioners," said Peller...And we're grateful that Bishop Lennon listened to the Vatican." Read more...  



Parish Initiative Catalyzes Change in Vatican Policy 


Download Canonical commentary on Cleveland decrees by Sr. Kate Kuenstler here


FutureChurch Save Our Parish Community Resources here 


Sign open letter to US Bishops here    


Canon Law Leaders Predict Major Shift in Parish/Diocesan Systems At an October meeting of over 350 canon lawyers. Msgr. Roch Page, judicial vicar of the Canadian Appeal Tribunal of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, said thatmany parishes will expand roles for laity and deacons even though in the short term some dioceses will continue to recruit international priests.  


Page foresees an evolution in the theology of the laity and believes increased lay participation will bring major change to priestly ministry and parish and diocesan systems. The 2012 Official Catholic Directory reports 40,000 lay ministers serve the U.S. church today. That number increases to more than 200,000 if Catholic school teachers are included. "The church depends tremendously on lay ministers," said Franciscan Sister Katarina Schuth, who also spoke at the conference. Read more... 



Bishops tell synod church needs lively parishes, Bible literacy 


U.S.: The laity make their voice heard on bishop nomination


Parish Closing and Appeals News  


Vigil at St. Frances Cabrini in Scituate hits 8 years On Friday, October 25 it will be eight years - or 252,460,800 seconds - that parishioners at St. Frances X. Cabrini in Scituate have remained in vigil in the church that the Archdiocese of Boston has been trying to close since Oct. 26, 2004. The building has been occupied 24/7 since then by parishioners who say they built it, paid for it, and it belongs to them. Read more... 


Canadian parishioners want Bishop invesigated for improper Church sale The former parishioners of Paroisse Saints Anges in North Bay, Canada have written the Congregation of Bishops adkin for an investigation of their Bishop Jean-Louis Plouffe for improperly closing and selling their church. Spokesperson Anna Brisson, said parishioners were told the three churches being were "a burden to the diocese," but she said Saints Anges alone had $300,000 in the bank, and the sale of the church netted the diocese $525,000."Our church was alive. There was no reason to close it."  Read more... 


Vatican urges St. John the Baptist parishioners to seek church lawyer NEW BEDFORD, MA - Monsignor Antonio Neri, undersecretary of the Congregation for Clergy, has written parishioners of St. John the Baptist Church that they should seek a canon lawyer and make a formal claim to keep their parish open.  Read more... 


Boston archdiocese reconfiguration to keep churches intact A Boston Archdiocese plan that is currently on the Cardinal's desk aims to keep parishes and churches intact. The reconfiguration will organize Boston's 288 parishes into 135  clusters that will be served by pastoral teams. The number of available priests will plummet from 316 in 2011 to 178 in 2021; only 17 percent of local Catholics now attend Mass.   Read more...

Download Free Canonical Appeal Resources here.

Order the Save Our Parish Community packet

Other Church News

Pope names Hildegard of Bingen "Doctor of the Church" 
Benedict has named two new "doctors" of the church, 16th-century Spanish preacher, St. John of Avila, and the 12th-century German mystic, St. Hildegard of Bingen. Benedict is particularly fond of Hildegard, who was considered a saint in his native Germany but was never officially proclaimed one by the Vatican. Read more...  


Archbishop of Canterbury pushing for Women Bishops worldwide. The Anglican primate of the Church of England, Archbishop Rowan Williams, is pushing for universal acceptance of women bishops. He will be leaving office in December and wants the measure passed at next month's General Synod. Stay tuned! Read more... 


Parishes' assets targeted in archdiocese bankruptcy case Lawyers for sexual abuse victims and other creditors in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee bankruptcy case telegraphed Thursday they intend to go after individual parish assets and proceeds from the archdiocese's $105 million Faith in Our Future campaign. Read more..  


Cardinal Raymond Burke Exerts Influence When then   

Arcbishop Raymond Burke was called to Rome after just four tumultuous years in St. Louis, many suggested that he was getting "kicked upstairs" to get him out of the U.S. spotlight. But Pope Benedict put him on the Congregation for Bishops, the Vatican body that vets candidates for bishops in the U.S. and around the world. That gives Burke a key role in shaping the hierarchy for years to come.... Read more..   


Vatican stands up to SSPX as talks hit impasse The Vatican's doctrine head, says hope must be maintained for full communion between the Society of St. Pius X and the Catholic Church, despite his telling a German radio network that talks with the society are off for now. The biggest obstacle for the society's reconciliation has been the teaching on religious liberty in Vatican II, which it claims contradicts previous Catholic teaching. Read more..

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