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Students represent the Archdiocese of Hartford at the March for Life today on the National Mall.

8202773256 5d16c585fa mA statue of Blessed Junipero Serra at the Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala in San Diego, Calif. (Photo by Bob Mullen/The Catholic Photographer)

ABOARD THE PAPAL FLIGHT FROM MANILA, Philippines (CNS) – Pope Francis said his September trip to the U.S. will take him to Philadelphia, New York and Washington – where he intends to canonize Blessed Junipero Serra – but probably no other stops.

sledesky 053 webA man photographs Father Stephen Sledesky, pastor of St. Bridget Parish in Manchester, and friends during reception in priest's honor Jan. 11.

MANCHESTER – Hundreds gathered at St. Bridget Parish on Jan. 11 to honor Father Stephen Sledesky, who was recognized as this year’s Archdiocesan Distinguished Elementary School Pastor. The award is presented annually to a pastor who exemplifies leadership, dedication and commitment to Catholic school education.

20150118cnsbr7984 webAn aerial view shows pilgrims gathering to hear a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis at Rizal Park in Manila, Philippines, Jan. 18. The view shows only a portion of the Mass site. (CNS photo/Philippine Air Force/Handout via Reuters)

MANILA, Philippines (CNS) -- Pope Francis told a crowd of an estimated 6 million gathered in a Manila park to protect the family "against insidious attacks and programs contrary to all that we hold true and sacred, all that is most beautiful and noble in our culture."

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FARMINGTON – The campaign for the 2015 Archbishop’s Annual Appeal got off to a rousing start with a reception and dinner for past donors at Farmington Gardens Jan. 9. Archbishop Leonard P. Blair spoke on the theme of this year’s appeal, “Living the Joy of the Gospel.”

st fran spirit award winners 2015 webFrom left, Mark and Barbara Lentini, Daniel O'Connell and Christopher M. Dadlez

HARTFORD – Archbishop Emeritus Henry J. Mansell and the late David A. Lentini were recipients of the St. Francis Spirit Award during the annual luncheon meeting of St. Francis Care, parent company of St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center, at the Connecticut Convention Center Jan. 7.

soccer web(Photo provided by Knights of Columbus/l'Osservatore Romano)

Wilfrid Macena and other members of a Haitian amputee soccer team present Pope Francis with a soccer jersey on Jan. 12, commemorating the fifth anniversary of the devastating earthquake in Haiti. Knights of Columbus Supreme Knight Carl Anderson stands to Mr. Macena’s left.

20150112cnsbr7611 webA Swiss Guard keeps watch as Pope Francis speaks during an audience with the Vatican diplomatic corps Jan. 12. (CNS photo/Claudio Peri pool via Reuters)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Highlighting some of the most urgent conflicts facing the world, Pope Francis said such strife and injustices were rooted in a culture of rejection that refuses to recognize God, to protect nature and to respect other human beings.

In a wide-ranging speech Jan. 12 to diplomats accredited to the Vatican, the pope urged the world's governments and individuals to work "to end every form of fighting, hatred and violence, and to pursue reconciliation, peace and the defense of the transcendent dignity of the human person."

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Archbishop Leonard P. Blair and Father John P. Gatzak record a session of “Archbishop’s Corner” at the chancery in Hartford for airing radio station WJMJ 88.9 FM. (Photo by Jack Sheedy)

HARTFORD – Bishops, priests and deacons often preach from a pulpit, high above the heads of their listening congregations. It’s part of their job – their ministry – but, for Archbishop Leonard P. Blair at least, it’s not enough.

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C.Anderson-Ultrasound_5502Archbishop Henry J. Mansell praises the work of St. Gerard’s Center for Life in Hartford Jan. 19 as he prepares to bless the pregnancy resource center’s new ultrasound machine. Dr. Theresa Krankowski, left, director of the center, and Carl A. Anderson, Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus, look on. The ultrasound machine is the first to be installed in Connecticut under Mr. Anderson’s ultrasound initiative, by which the Supreme Council matches donations raised by local councils. (Photo by Jack Sheedy)

HARTFORD – Supreme Knight Carl Anderson of the Knights of Columbus called the installation of an ultrasound machine in a local pregnancy resource center "a significant step forward in building a culture of life here in the state of Connecticut."

The ultrasound machine at St. Gerard’s Center for Life, 22 Maple Ave., is the first to be installed in Connecticut under a program that Mr. Anderson initiated two years ago.

The total amount raised to purchase the machine, according to St. Gerard’s director Theresa Krankowski, was about $65,000. Under Mr. Anderson’s ultrasound initiative, local Knights councils spearheaded fund drives to raise half the money and the Supreme Council matched it.

As about 100 priests, Knights, mothers and Archbishop Henry J. Mansell crowded into the small offices, Mr. Anderson said, "As Catholics, we know that the culture of life arises from the Gospel of life, from him who said he had come to give us life abundantly and from the woman whose yes to life made this possible."

He said each of us should build "a culture of life which will emanate into the larger society and influence that larger society with the values of life, the values of hope, the values of human dignity and respect and concern and mutual health."

He quoted Pope Paul VI as saying "that the first victim of violence is the truth."

He said Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion, "is based on a lie." He said a young mother recently e-mailed him an ultrasound image of her child in the womb with the caption, "We could see the heart beat at eight weeks!"

"What further argument do we need?" he said.

Mr. Anderson made reference to Dr. Krankowski’s earlier remarks, during which she said that Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers often tell pregnant women that their ultrasound services are intended only for women who want to abort their babies.

Mr. Anderson said, "So why is it that the right to choose becomes the necessity to have an abortion? Why does a woman’s choice require, necessitate the choice for abortion, regardless of how she reacts when she sees the truth of that child that she’s carrying?"

He suggested that abortion providers be asked if it is more profitable to provide abortions than to provide ultrasound services.

"But here we know that the gift of life is a gift, and we treat it as a gift," he said. "We don’t treat it as a monetary requirement or according to a monetary criterion, because we can’t put a price on a human life."

Mr. Anderson later told the Transcript that the ultrasound initiative has so far helped fund about 83 ultrasound machines in pregnancy resource centers nationwide. "We’re just beginning," he said. "It’s picking up. In fact, for us it takes a year or two for a program like this to get going, and so I think we’re just beginning to see [results] now."

Before blessing the new ultrasound machine, Archbishop Mansell said that Mr. Anderson’s new book, Beyond a House Divided, describes a national shift in attitude from pro-choice to pro-life. "The truth is becoming more evident," he said. "No woman should have an abortion if she’s having it because of financial concerns or material concerns. We will take care of those concerns, through our hospitals, through our agencies."

He said that years ago it may not have been possible to realize that the infant in the womb was a human being. "There is no excuse now for not realizing that," he said.

An hour before the ceremonies at St. Gerard’s main offices, Archbishop Mansell had blessed a newly renovated satellite office two miles away at 59 Eaton St., the former St. Luke’s Convent. Counseling and material support will be given to families at the satellite office, and the 22 Maple Ave. site will be used mainly for ultrasounds.

Michael Klinger, a Knight from Wethersfield Council 4193, was active in the fund-raising efforts for St. Gerard’s ultrasound machine. He told the Transcript, "The power of the visual in this age is huge. As Carl Anderson has pointed out, studies have shown that if women could see the life in their womb, 80 percent would likely opt not to abort it."

Events Calendar

January 2015
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
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07:00 PM
Caritas Christi Center, Hamden, Hamden, United States
"Finding the Sacred in Everyday Life," a two-part program, will be presented by Lisa Velazquez, certified [...]
Date :  January 19, 2015
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09:00 AM
Cathedral of St. Joseph, Hartford
Archbishop Leonard P. Blair will celebrate the annual Rally for Life Mass at 9 a.m. Jan. 24 at the [...]
09:00 AM
Doubletree by Hilton, Bristol, Bristol, United States
Magnificat for women will meet for breakfast from 9 a.m. to noon Jan. 24 at the Doubletree by Hilton in Bristol. Registration begins at [...]
Date :  January 24, 2015
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12:00 PM
St. Mary School, Newington, Michigan City, United States
Saint Mary School in Newington will host several open houses next week for families interested in the [...]
Date :  January 25, 2015
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02:00 PM
Spiritual Renewal Center, Norwich, Norwich, United States
A Mass of Healing will be celebrated at 2 p.m. Jan. 26 at the Spiritual Renewal Center in Norwich. It is [...]
05:15 PM
Albertus Magnus College, New Haven, New Haven, United States
Dr. Denys Turner will speak on “A Teacher and Two Students: Albert, Thomas Aquinas and Meister Eckhart” on from 5:15-6:30 p.m. Jan. 26 in the Hubert Campus Center on the New Haven campus [...]
07:00 PM
Caritas Christi Center, Hamden, Hamden, United States
"Finding the Sacred in Everyday Life," a two-part program, will be presented by Lisa Velazquez, certified [...]
12:00 AM
Knights of Columbus Museum, New Haven, New Haven, United States
The Knights of Columbus Museum’s 10th annual Christmas crèche exhibition, “Buon Natale: Crèches of Italy,” opened Dec. 1 and remains on view until Feb. 1 with [...]
Date :  January 26, 2015
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01:00 PM
St. Mary School, Newington, Michigan City, United States
Saint Mary School in Newington will host several open houses next week for families interested in the [...]
Date :  January 29, 2015
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06:30 PM
My Father's House, Moodus, East Haddam, United States
MOODUS – Healing and a spaghetti supper will be combined at 6:30 p.m. Jan 30 at My Father’s House at [...]
Date :  January 30, 2015
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01:30 PM
Caritas Christi Center, Hamden, United States
Caritas Christi Center's ongoing centering prayer program will continue from 1:30-3:30 p.m. Jan. 31 at the [...]
09:00 AM
My Father's House, Moodus, East Haddam, United States
MOODUS – Matthew Arnold, speaker, author, producer and host of the radio program “Shield of Faith” on Radio Maria, will present a program titled [...]
Date :  January 31, 2015

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