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WEST HARTFORD – There is a little-understood lay evangelization movement in the Archdiocese of Hartford – even though, nationwide, it claims to have a million participants, and many multiples of that worldwide.
Joan Reynolds, a parishioner at Our Lady of Victory Parish in West Hartford, is the lay coordinator for English-speaking participants – called cursillistas – of the Cursillo Movement in the Archdiocese of Hartford. She said archdiocesan priest Father Donald J. O’Leary (d. 2007) was an early pioneer and a spiritual director of the movement in Connecticut, where Cursillo has been active for over four decades.
Presence. "For over a century," the National Council of Catholic Bishops Pastoral Letter "Empowered by the Spirit" opens, "the Catholic campus ministry in our country, empowered by the Spirit, has been forming communities of faith which witness to the presence of the risen Christ."
The priest chaplains, lay ministers, faculty advisors and student members convince by their presence and their actions, explains John Campbell, "that God is in the equation, that God is an option and that we are who we are because of our faith in God."
Mr. Campbell serves as lay chaplain at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain. He works as part of a network of college ministries coordinated by Father Michael Dolan as its director. In the Archdiocese of Hartford, 13 colleges have officially recognized campus ministries. Their missions are similar, but the nature of each campus makes each ministry unique.
MERIDEN – On the heels of the retirement of Pope Benedict XVI and election of Pope Francis, two young women received names as new Franciscan novices that will forever root them to that historic transition in the Church.
The Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist welcomed Sister Marie Benedict Elliott and Sister Francesca Silver to the novitiate at liturgies on March 23 and April 7, respectively.
Mother General Shaun Vergauwen named the former Christine Marie Elliott for Pope Benedict after the postulant had referred at the ceremony to the "historic moment" the past few weeks had been for the Church. She described as a gift her experience with her community of each day’s unfolding of developments in Rome.
Archbishop Henry J. Mansell takes scissors to a ribbon to signify the formal opening and dedication of the St. Gianna Pregnancy Resource Center in New Haven on April 21 as Ivana Solsbury, who chairs the center’s board of directors, in white suit, and others applaud.
The center is designed to be a source of material and nonmaterial aid for expectant mothers and their unborn children, through and after birth, and to fathers.
It is located at the corner of Whitney Avenue and Trumbull Street.
A reception followed the dedication and blessing. (Photo by Mary Chalupsky)
NEW HAVEN – A lecture by Judge Marta Cartabia, of the Constitutional Court of Italy, could have been titled "Surprise Pope," according to Professor Mary Ann Glendon, a speaker at the April 14 event.
That is because Judge Cartabia traced the ways the thought of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, expressed in his speeches, shatters the stereotyped images of him. Her talk, titled "A Journey with Benedict XVI through the Spirit of Constitutionalism," were part of the Judge Guido Calabresi Fellowship in Religion and Law at the St. Thomas More Catholic Center at Yale University. The talk was sponsored by The Lehrman Institute.