Sunday, January 26, 2014

CALL FOR CONSECRATED LIFE "CREDIBLE WITNESS" SUBJECTS

camellias with peeling wallpaper

"Credible Witnesses" is my monthly column at Magnificat about great, interesting Catholics who have not yet been, and may never be, canonized.

I have completed my essays for this year and am now working up the list for 2015. Which it appears Pope Francis has designated "The Year for Consecrated Life."

Therefore, all the credible witnesses for 2015 need to be consecrated people. They also need to be dead.

They're looking for a "good mixture of monks, nuns, priests, brothers, sisters, consecrated virgins, consecrated lay people." 

So far we've come up with these:

1. Sr. Ida Perfety of the Society Devoted to the Sacred Heart (1922-2000).

2. Fr. Alfred Delp, S.J. (1907-1945) (executed by Nazis).

3. Sofia Cavaletti, co-foundress of the Cathechesis of the Good Shepherd (1917-2011).

4. Venerable Mother Angeline Teresa McCrory (worked with elderly and infirm in the Bronx) (1893-1984).

5. Mother Marie des Douleurs, founder of the Congregation of Benedictines of Christ Crucified, special charism for guilty priests (1902-1983)

I'm thinking to call on you all to throw out any suggestions/ideas. 

Thank you in advance!  

camellias still on their bush

41 comments:

  1. I presume Eddy & Catherine Doherty of Madonna House are in there somewhere...

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  2. Hi Heather, thanks for the chance to suggest Fr. John Anthony Hardon, Jesuit priest and theologian. Blessings for your project!

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  3. Hello Heather,

    The first name that came to my mind was Jean Vanier...... founder of the L'Arche communities. I do not know that he is officially consecrated ...... but it is clear that he personally consecrated himself to Christ in the poor. I think he would be an amazing story for your articles but I do not know if he meets the criteria.

    If I think of others, I will let you know.

    Your friend,
    Phil

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    1. Jean Vanier is the best, but he's still, thank the Lord, among us. The person has to be deceased...Thank you, Phil!

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  4. I wrote of Catherine Doherty this year. Denis--Eddie became a Greek Melkite priest in his 80's which wouldn't qualify him as consecrated I don't think as a Roman Catholic. Eliz. you're the second person to suggest Fr. John Hardon--will check him out! Have rec'd lots of great recommendations here and on FB--thanks so much, all!

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    1. Melkite is Catholic - it is a rite in union with Rome.

      I would suggest Mother Alphonsa - Rose Hawthorne Lathrop - who founded the Dominican Sister Servants of Relief for Incurable Cancer. her cause is underway and her life is rather fascinating - she was the daughter of Nathaniel Hawthorne. Married to an alcoholic, she divorced, dedicated her life to caring for people with cancer, who were treated like lepers in her day.

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    2. Oh okay, thanks re Melkite. Rose is on the proposed list. I lived in Salem, MA for a year and am fascinated by the Hawthornes...

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    3. Cool - I think Fr. C is the postulator for her cause.

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  5. Cora Evans, convert from Mormonism, mystic: Michael McDevitt from Half Moon Bay is custodian for her writings....see CoraEvans.com

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  6. Nobody comes to mind this second but I wanted to tell you how much I love that window pic! I want it! :)

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  7. Founder of the K of C Fr. Michael McGivney.

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    1. Fr. McGivney has a huge and loyal following! Thanks for the suggestion.

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  8. Mother Antonia Brenner, twice married and divorced Catholic mother; foundress of the Eudist Sisters of the 11th Hour after living in prison in Tiajuana. Former denizen of Beverly Hills. Totally lovable LA type...

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  9. Bishop James Walsh, in prison in China for 12 years. One of the original Maryknollers (not the founder who has the same name). Lived at the Knoll after release; always saw him in line in the refractory at meal time.

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  10. How about Walter Ciszek or Bill Steltemeier?

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  11. I already wrote on Fr. Ciszek (who is stellar) this year. Suggested Henri Nouwen (ditto), Mag. wouldn't go for him. "Former denizen of Beverly Hills. Totally lovable LA type" Mother Antonia Brenner (I just KNOW I'll be pushing for her, thanks, Fr. P) and all the rest I will absolutely check out in the coming weeks. I've got a ton of other names from people weighing in on FB. Fun!

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  12. Fr. Nelson Baker? He built homes for unwed mothers and orphanages for all the kids who lost parents in the flu epidemic of the 1920's (I think) in Buffalo, NY.

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  13. Fr. Nelson Baker? He built homes for unwed mothers and orphanages for kids who lost their parents in the flu epidemic of the 1920's (I think) in the Buffalo, NY area.

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  14. He was a diocesan priest (and so not technically in "consecrated life"), but I would suggest Fr. Eugene Hamilton of New York. Some information here: http://www.ncregister.com/site/article/a_priestly_dream_realized_before_death/

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    1. Religious are by definition consecrated is my understanding so Fr. Hamilton would qualify and what a touching story!

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  15. Charles Peguy, especially since September 2014 is the centenary of his death.

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  16. oh right, you've already moved on to the 2015 and those who are consecrated. So how about Robert Hugh Benson?

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    1. But I will see if we can get Charles P. in for 2016 (unless the Pope declares some other year: how about the Year of the Catholic Artist?). Robert Hugh Benson sounds interesting, too, had heard of but knew nothing about him. Thank you Fred!

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  17. Thanks for all your wonderful writing over the years Heather. I follow your blog for it's proper balance of piety, unself-righteousness, and humor. Perhaps your message is so accessible because you know all to well that we are all only human, even when we refuse to believe it sometimes. Your variety of personalities and subject matter are artfully presented to their benefit, and also ours. I'd like to recommend to your consideration : Teilhard de Chardin ("above all, trust in the slow work of God") and Elisabeth Leseur, a French Laywoman who lived her short life in prayer and the knowledge that it had the power to change anything and anyone.

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    1. thanks, Jerry, I just finished my Elis. Leseur piece--she's in this year, plus I don't think she was consecrated. Teilhard de Chardin and The Divine Milieu--great, had not thought of him!

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  18. here's a link to forms of consecrated life. kind of interesting.
    http://www.usccb.org/beliefs-and-teachings/vocations/consecrated-life/forms-of-consecrated-life.cfm

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  19. Thomas Merton. 2015 will be the 100th anniversary of his birth.

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  20. How about Blessed Titus Brandsma? Carmelite priest imprisoned at Dachau for anti-Nazi stand. Executed by Nazis.

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  21. Gwen John,British artist,Blessed John Ruysbroeck,Flemish mystic...

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  22. Franz Liszt? He was a Franciscan tertiary, definitely great and interesting and highly unlikely to be canonized...

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  23. Hi Heather,

    I suggest Takashi Nagai, a Japanese scientist, convert and survivor of the atomic bomb attack. I first heard of him a few years ago when i read his address to the people of Nagasaki shortly after the atom bomb was dropped on that city. His wife was one of the victims, his neighbours and friends were killed, and his city destroyed, but he made a divinely inspired connection between the fate of Nagasaki and the end of the war. Father Paul Glynn wrote a wonderful book about him called A Song for Nagasaki, and what I learned there about the Urakami Catholics and Takashi Nagai has been an ongoing inspiration for me - and my heritage is Scots-Irish!

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  24. I've been overwhelmed by all these great suggestions, many for people that are new to me--thanks so much. I have got my revised list off to Fr. Peter Cameron, with alternates, and thus was able to use almost all of these...will keep you posted. Meanwhile, check out Caryll Houselander, February's entry for this year...

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  25. I first heard of Elisabeth Leseur when one of her writings was published in Magnificat (the same way that I discovered your blog). Her writings, although written over one hundred years ago, where very readable and relevant today. They have served as an inspiration and a focus of meditation in my life.
    Heather, thank you for your blog and your contributions to Magnificat, I always look forward to your writings.

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