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October 6, 1961     The Observer
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/ By FATHER JOHN RYAN IS IT TRUE THAT ON A DAY OF FAST YOU CAN IN- TERRUPT YOUR MAIN MEAL AND HAVE YOUR DES- SERT ABOUT AN HOUR AFTER THE MAIN COURSE? It is true that a person who is bound to the laws of fast does not have to take his main meal all in one sitting with- out interruption. As a matter of fact, in places where the American custom of "nonstop eating" is not observed, peo- ple do take their main meal over a much lon~er period of time than that to which we are accustomed. It is permissible to pause a bit, for instance, between the hors d'oeuv~'es and the first course of the meal. It is likewise permissible to let the main meal digest, if leisure permits, before taking dessert. For convenience sake too, it is permissible to interrupt parts of the meal, especially the dessert, to take care of other matters, such as starting the children off to bed, clearing off the table, etc. As long as there is a moral union between the parts of [the main meal, interruptions are permissible. How long an interruption? Let's say, not over an hour. -k -k * WHY AREN'T THE SINS THAT "CRY TO HEAVEN FOR VENGEANCE" LISTED IN PRESENT-DAY CATECHISMS? In widely scattered passages of Sacred Scripture certain / serious offenses are individually referred to in words that suggest for them the designation "sins crying to heaven for vengeance." Mter Cain had slain Abel, for example, the Lord said to him, "What have you done? The voice of your brother's blood cries to me from the ground." The angels told Lot that they were about to destroy Sodom "because. the outcry against them has become so great before the Lord that He sent us to destroy it." Similarly described are the following sins: oppression of the poor (Exodus 3, 7); oppression of widows and orphans (Sirach, 35, 14); and denying one his just wage {James 5, 4). Nowhere in Sacred Scripture, however, do these sins ap- pear as a special group; nor does one find here or elsewhere the systematic reason why any other serious offense against God could not be described in the same manner. For this reason this "class" of sins is rightly omitted in recent cate- chisms. * IS THE CHURCH OPPOSED TO NATURAL PAINLESS CHILDBIRTH? You are probably referring to the psychological method of natural painless childbirth. In an address given at an audi- ence for gynecologists on Jan. 8, 1956, Pope Pius XlI passed favorable judgment upon this method and the benefits it af- fords to the mother. He noted: "The instruction given in re- gard to nature's travail in childbirth: the correction of false interpretations of organic sensations ~d the invitation to correct them; the, influence exercised to avoid groundless anxiety and fear; the assistance afforded the mother in child- birth opportunely to collaborate with nature, to remain tran- quil and under self control; an increased consciouness of the greatness of motherhood] in general, and particularly of the hour when the mother brings forth her child--all these are vositive values to which no reproach can be made." a Pr- He points out that God, in inflicting punishment on our first parents and their descendents, did not wish to forbid men from making their earthly lot more bearable; from lightening the burden of work and fatigue, pain, sickness, and death. He continues: "Similarly, in punishing Eve, God did not wish to forbid--nor did He forbid--mothers to make use of means which render childbirth easier and less pain- ful. - . I AM DISTURBED WHEN CATHOLIC CHARITABLE OR- GANIZATIONS SEND ALONG A RELIGIOUS ARTICLE WITH THEIR APPEAL. AM I OBLIGED TO RETURN THESE ARTICLES IF I DO NOT SEND A CONTRIBUTION? The burden of reclaiming such articles rests entirely with the sender. If the article is expensive, which is seldom the ~ case, it would be advisable to retain it until such time as the sender reclaims it or forwards you the cost of return postage and handling. If it is inexpensive, one can reasonably pre- sume that the sender has no expectation of its return and, therefore, it may be retained, used, or disposed of according to one's good pleasure. These are the risks which the sender , assumes in ventures of this sort. You note that you have been apparently put on an "easy mark list" for various Catholic charitable organizations. I'm sure that you can appreciate the problem which faces these groups. The urgency of their work rules out any "custom made" appeal; any attempt to contact only those who are not as yet committed to one or two charitable enterprises. Their appeals are directed both to those who have never given and to those who are always giving. It is for this latter group to determine how many organizations their means will permit them to support. Obviously there is a limit to everyone's charity. It is for each one to heed the dictates of prudence in this regard. "k * #c THE BOOK OF JOEL SEEMS TO MAKE IT CLEAR THAT THE GENERAL JUDGMENT WILL BE HELD IN THE VAL- LEY OF JOSAPHAT NEAR JERUSALEM. IS THIS TRUE? Since the word "Josaphat" literally means " God will Judge", we may rightfully conclude that it is merely a meta- phor used to indicate the fact that there will be a general judgment, and not to indicate the exact place. The man who says, Unless I feel, I will not believe, is a narrow and foolish as the man who says, Unless I understand, I will not believe. / --R. H. Benson For what is fame in itself but the blast of another man's mouth as soon passed, as spoken? --St. Thomas More There are no rules of architecture for a caste in the clouds. -G. K. Chesterton "@lSS I~'~ Yol. XVl, No. 40 ~ 1 Oct. 7, 1961 THE MOST REVEREND LORAS T. LANE Publisher THE REVEREND ARTHUR J. O'NEILL Managing Editor MARJORIE GALLAGHER Women's Page Editor ROBERT WILLEMS News Editor BEULAH O'MEARA Business ROBERT J. STARR Advertising ANN BERTOLASI Circulation The Observer, printed weekly at 27 South State Street, Freeport, Illlnois, is the official newspaper of the Catholic Diocese of Rockford. Second class postage paid at Freeport, ILlinois. Subscriptions $4.00 per year prepaid in the United States ALL COMMUNICATIONS SHOULD BE ADDRESSED TO THE OBSERVER, 1260 NORTH CHURCH STREET, ROCKFORD, ILLINOIS POSTMASTER: Please send form 3579 to the OBSERVER, ig60 Nocth Ghurch Street, goddord, Ulinait. on Truncated Schools To comment that a man is eltherflshmg ormend- ing his nets is to commend both his industry and his foresight. The same applies to the Catholic edu- cational system. There are fishers and menders. Of late the menders have become more bold with not-so-veiled hints that in the days ahead Catholic schools, in sozne sections of the country, will be planned to accommodate only a segment of the school population One of the loaded questions is: what grades should be eliminated from the parochial elemen- tary schools, if and when the time comes for that expediency? Recently the Rev. Neff G. McCluskey, S.J cor- responding editor of America Magazine asserted that a "school in every parish is a goal too expen- sive to pursue especially if such schools cannot accommodate all the children seeking to enroll." He recommended that our school system should aim instead at a partial system for all, starting at the seventh grade level. This suggestion, by no means a copyright of Father McCluskey, has caused much comment. " There are certain assumptions in his view which should be clarified. ,The first is that any level of the educational sys- tem can be sacrificed without harming the re- mainder. Catholic colleges depend on Catholic urren an high schools- and these in turn in the grade schools. There is a moral oi ligation to maintain all levels-- an integrated and not a truncated system. Beneath the solution of a limited grade system is the second assumption that the Catholic schools are merely instruments for catechetical instruc- tion which could be dropped with little or no academic loss. If our schools do not have an academic influence we may as well close all of them--all grades--and concentrate on catechetical centers. The further assumption in the "which grades must go" theory is the as yet unsettled question:of the age of the greatest influence. There are argu- ments which would favor the higt school age as the most receptive and having the most needs. There are other rules from the psychology of learning whichpoint to the. early school and pre- school age as the most formative. The theories which are proposed for the solution do stimulate thought on the problem. Judging from the planning for new schools and the enthusiatic support of the people for these schools, it seems as though the parishes of this diocese will try to meet the problem by continued expansion. We are beginning to realize that Catholic schoolsare not a luxury to be maintained only by those who have school age children, but a responsibility to be borne by all. ! and pulation BY J. J. GILBERT In one of the most critical sessions of its 16-year history, the Ui ited Nations General Assembly is asked to debate the highly inflammatory topic in- volving the exportation of birth control as a part of programs to aid so-called underdeveloped na- tions. It is a project which Swedemhas tried for some time to advance. It is also a project which is abhorrent to some of the natioris in the UN. Some Latin American delegates said in the Gen- eral Committee that the birth control proposal is abhorrent to their countries. Some European dele- gates spoke out against it. Some African spokes- men took reserved attitudes, calling attention to the fact that theirs are under-populated countries. Soviet Russia abstained in the :voting. In the past, it has been the consistent position of Moscow that problems of overpopulation can best be solved by application of the communist economic philosophy. It is possible that the Red delegate wanted to op- pose the item in the General Committee, but was unwilling to appear to follow the lead of smaller countries. In his vigorous opposition to the Swedish-Danish proposal in General Committee debate, Dr. Ama- deo told his fellow members: "Today, we must stress the things that unite us." The birth control item is not one of these things. N.C.W.C. NEWS SERVICR / II I I II II I II " II IIII III I I I I = I IIII I ! III II IIIII I SPOTLIGHT ON SOCIAL REFORM glL ~{ ." 4 6 i If " I'1 ' IIII I I IIJ IIIII " " II II I I I I IIII I I IIII II II J L IRON MOCK[RY I r I & k 4. (m t, To the lIth national convention of the Teamsters International, held at Miami Beach in July, came Edward Bennett Williams, the noted American criminologist. Mr. Williams bad been invited to address the assembled delegates. No one would ever confuse this convention with a national confer- ence of the Confraternity of Chris- tian Doctrine. He excoriated the treatment of many witnesses who had been compelled to tes- tify before the McClellan com- mittee. A great many fellow cit- izens, both pro- fessional and non-professional, would share his views on the mis- use of constitu- tional rights and privileges on the part of some memberB of Congressional com- mittees. Humorous Incident Upon reading and re-reading the speech in the teamsters maga- zine, I found the exposition of his theme intensely interesting. It was informativ~e and developed in a scholarly manner. Since so many of his listeners had had personal experiences with the fifth amen~- ment, it goes without saying that he had a most receptive audience. To render his audience even more kindly c~sposed and benevolent to his message, the noted orator re- called an incident of a speech he had delivered in the deep South. The invitation had come from the warden of Atlanta federal peni- tentiary. He spoke to several thousand men, all inmates of the penitentiary. "The presiding officer of the evening was an inmate," Mr. Wil- liams told the teamsters, "and he was very generous and gracious in his introduction. He told me in what esteem I was held and how grateful the inmates were that I had come down. Suddenly it seemed as though he was caught ins flight of oratory. He caught FATHER WILLIAM SMITH, $.J. himself short and said, 'Well, I have talked long enough. Suffice it tO say, Mr. Williams, we fel- lows down here in Atlanta regard you as one of us.' / Has Union Card "I was somewhat nonplussed by the introduction," continued Mr. Williams, "and over-awed by the size of the crowd, and I made a terrible faux pas that night, be- cause I opened my address by saying, 'It's wonderful to have se many of you here tonight.' "By way of showing you how /. words may be appropriate or m- appropriate, depending upon the time and the place in which they are uttered, may I say to you this morning that it is very wonderful to see so many of" you old friends here this morning and I hope that you regard me as one of you, be- cause, you know, I really am. I have a card." self. History tells us that after his death, his church beatified him. We know him today as Blessed Edmund Campion." Day Of Judgment In his peroration the teamster attorney cited an incident in the history of the State of Connecticut that could have been put to sub- lime use, but it comes out in rath. er ridiculous form: "On May lgth of 1780 in Hart- ford, Conn " according to the hostorian, "the skies at noon turned from blue to gray. By mid- afternoon theyhad blackened so densely that in that religious age men fell on their knees believing that the Day of Judgment was at hand. "The Connecticut House of Rep- resentatives was in session. In the darkened chambers some of its members fell down and others clamored for adjournment. The As he warmed to his subject Speaker of the House, one Colonel Mr. Williams' precautionary re-, Davenport, came to his feet and ma~rk on the appropriateness and he silenced the din with these the inappropriateness of words came back to me. He was wring- ing the changes on the merits of the fifth amendment and the de- merits of those who had com- pelled many of his fellow mem- bers in the Teamsters Internation- al to make use of it. As a nation we have grow~ lax in protecting the safeguards of liberty ~uch as the fifth amendment. Historic Example words, "Gentlemen, either the Day of Judgment is at hand or it is not; if it is not, there is no cause for adjournment, and if it is, I choose to be found doing my duty. I wisl~ therefore, that candles be brought." Ludicrous Image If Mr. V illiams had stopped there, he might have left an im- pression upon his audience which could have had a salutary effect upon their souls. But he had to de- Then came the passage which liver the punch line. "Delegates brought back vividly Mr. Wil- to this Convention," he continued, liams' caution on the appropriate- ness and the inappropriateness of words depending upon place and circumstances. He emoted: "We have grown dim in our memories ,and myoptic as we read history. because we have forgotten {hat on All Saints Day in 1586, a bearded prisoner lay collapsed on a bed. of straw in the Tower of London, too weak to move, almost too ill to. speak. He was interrogated for complicity in a plot to overthrow and I presume solemnly, "your country and mine has never be- fore in its history needed the light and the illumination that you, from your experience, can bring to it with your candles. I thank you." I can picture Jimmy Hoffa hold. ing a candle. He is photogenic and displays a cherubic counten- ance when photographed. :But by no stretch of the imagination can I conjure up an image of 350 Qieen Elizabeth, and from his pound Barney Baker, now under lips came an invocation of the indictment in Pittsburgh, everi privilege not to incriminate him- symbolically holding a candle. ' REAPINGS AT RANDOM t By GERARD E. SHERRY Recently Jesuit Father Neill G. McCluskey advocated the elimination of certain grades of Catholic elementary educa- tion in the interests of economy. Father McCluskey's position is that the goal of "a school in every parish" is much too expensive a burden--especially when such schools still will be unable to accommodate all the Catholic children available. This idea was first broached in public by Archbishop Law- rence J. Shehan, Coadjutor of Baltimore,~~ ~:~.>.~::~::~:~:i~::~.-- when he was the Bishop of Bridgeport. Arch. ~!~i bishop Shehan is episcopal chairman of the education department of the National Catho- ~: lic Welfare conference. He is particularly suited as an authority on this subject and he has a good case. So has Father McCluskey- who also suggested that the money saved through the elimination of lower grades could be used to build more Catholic high schools. Takes Issue With Dissenter Of course, there are many dissenters in this point of view, including John T. Foudy, San Franciscan Archdiocesan Super- intendent of Schools. Father Foudy asserts that the elemen- tary and high school systems in the Church are dependent upon each other. He also denies any assumption that Catholic elementary schools are simply thinly disguised instruments for catechetical instructions which could be dropped with little or no 1"ass. These are debatable questions and are held sin- cerely by proponents of each view. However, there are two points in Father Foudy's observation which I, as a parent and a writer, would like to take issue. Father Foudy asserts that despite financial burdens, Cath- olics in the East have built up a parochial school system which enrolls nearly 80 per cent or more of elementary Cath- ~tli children, lie suggests therefore that in California and the West the same is possible despite the cost. Frankly, I do no see how, here and now, Father Foudy can offer this argu- ment with any validity. The Catholic school system in the East has been a lot longer in existence than in the West. Population-wise, Eastern areas of heavy Catholic concentra- tion should be able to do what they have done. However, the West is still a mission area. Catholics in the East have al- ready built their Churches and parish plants. Out in the West, their fellow Catholics are facing a crushing financial burden of not only building schools but churches, convents and the like. Parent-School Cooperation It is more expensive to live in the West--without even bothering about the educational burdens Catholics .have to bear in relation to their schools. Hence, I think Father Foudy's argument is valid from the rectory viewpoint but certainly not from the viewpoint of Catholic parents trying to establish a home in the West--paying fantastic state and local taxes which are not faced in the East. The second point is in relation to Father Foudy's assertion that parent-school cooperation in education is greater among the parents of elementary students. He says that such parents are more alert to the needs for cooperation than are high school parents. I don't agree. I think an objective appraisal of the situation would bear me out. ~. Coolness Toward Parents One of the greatest difficulties Catholic parents have in re- lation to the Catholic school is that they are not considered cooperators, except in relation to finances. One in ten Catholic elementary schools will consult parents in relation to tuition, school uniforms, and the like. Parents resent being treated only as money raisers. Often they are treated as interlopers if they make suggestions for the betterment of the school. And this takes place even where the parent is competent to make such a rdcommendauon. Let's face it. Many of the administrators of our Catholic schools pay only iip service to parent-teacher cooperation. In some. cases they complain that parents are not interested in attending meetings. It is simply called a question of par- ental apathy. However, in many cases this is just not true. Two-Way Street I am rather lucky in the parochial school my children at- tend. At the beginning of the school year the pastor called a meeting of the parents and introduced the teachers of the school, both clerical and lay. He reminded the parents of their financial obligations, but also invited them to participate in the deliberations of every level of school problems. He wants the parents to really belong to the school and he made it clear to the teachers they complement rather than supplant the parents. This is an ideal approach. Unfortunately, it is by no means the norm. x Parent-teacher cooperation is a two.way street. For every Cdtholic school that carries this principle beyond the theory stage there are nine which don't. ~ It all goes back to the old saw that the laity cannot be trusted; to old idea that laity must be submissive. In matters of doctrine, in matters of ecclesiastical discipline, the laity must indeed' be submissive. There are many areas of the Church's life, however, where a vital laity is not only needed but desired. Must Solve Problem The problem will not be solved by asserting that there is no problem. Neither will it be solved by the laity becoming arrogant in the matter. But solved it shbuld be with charity and understanding on both sides. If there is a new approach to parent-teacher cooperation I would then say that Father Foudy is on good ground m call- ing for continued Catholic parental sacrifice in increasing the number of our elementary schools. Alas, the sacrifice will be in vain if parents are treated as donors to parish plants instead of partners in the mystical body of Christ. .Ine EDITOR'S NOTE: In ,our new format of nine columns per page; introduced for the first time with this issue, we will keepthe columns on this page of opinion because our read- ers have grown accustomed to them. The additional space will be taken over by this "COLUMN NINE". This will be a regular feature and will be a round-up o~ opinions on - various subjects from around the nation and the world. Let- ters from our readers will also appear in this column. NbTRE DA -NATO ~he North Atlantic Treaty Or- ganization (NATO) has prevented the Soviet Union from "Initiating direct or indirect military action against a member of the alliance. NATO's great strength has come from the steadfast determination of .its members to regard this area as vital to the security of all." BUT: "The great Soviet strides in nuclear research and develop- ment not only have won Russia increased prestige among neutral nations but have had a depressing effect upon the will and ability to resist aggression. Internal strains within the allia~t~e have been a natural result. Increasing dependence upon atomic weap- ons, special demands of French nationalism, fears over German rearmament, and increasing skep- ticism about American diplomatic leadership have made the NATO deterent seemingly less reliable than it had been a few years ago. The defensibility of Europe is in quesUon today." (Professor Lawrence Kap- lan, chairman of history de. partment Kent State Univer. sity, in October REVIEW OF , POLITICS, University of Notre Dame publication.) NEW YORK-JURISTS II "A theory that the American government must be a secular state is being, advanced in an aggressive manner by non-Chris- tian and religiously neutral forces. These forces have not been suc- cessful in having their views ac- cepted by the Federal or '~ State executive or legislative branches of government. It is in the JUDICIAL branch of government, however, that the forces support- ing the notion of a secular govern- ment neutral on principle to- wards religion have been active and sometimes successful. "There exists a powerful, well- financed group in America seek- ing by court action to destroy every moral support 'which the state now bestows on religion. "By custom, law and basic in- stitution of America's citizens, this country is a nation whose institutions depend on religious values; religion is the source, and in some respects, the only source of our morality; religion is the ultimate and the only real foun- tainhead of those truths by which we can triumph over the threaten- ing forces behind the Brandenburg gate. "It is not urged, of course, that the American state should be com- mitted to religion, but rather that it should be committed to an atti- tude of profoqnd and approving respect for the religious commit- ments of its people. "It is the missiontherefore, of Christian jurists to study the re- ligious roots of American law and to combat the new notion of America as a secular state. Re- ligious membe~ of the bench and bar have in our day the urgent duty and high honor of making known the profoundly religious origin of America's legal institu- "tinns. The religious jurist, how- ever, does not serve his church by giving witness to the religious foundation of the law; he serves rather the law itself which cannot be understood or sustained unless its religious bases are secure." (The Rev. Robert F, Drinan, S.J dean of Boston College School of Law, sermon at an- nual Red Mass, Guild of Catholic Lawyers, New York.) PITTSBURGH- SCHOOLS !" "If the decision is made against parental rights and in favor of the establishment of a monolithic school system (through ~to and federal aid only to public schools), then it will be time to abandon on some levels, however reluctantly, many treasured elements of American education which have served so well the Republic and ottr American way of life Un- der present circumstances the ex- pansion of Catholic schools at the r~te which has been routine dur- ing tile past decade appears to bo impossible." (Msgr. John B, MeDowell, ouperintondent of Pittsburgh diocesan schools In his annual report) )'