Happy Ordination Anniversary

April 10
Father Pradeep Kumar Thirumalareddy
St. Mary, Batesville & St. John the Baptist, Sardis

April 12
Father Raju Macherla
St. Elizabeth, Clarksdale & Immaculate Conception, Shelby
Father Sleeva Reddy Mekala
St. James, Leland & Immaculate Conception, Indianola

April 14
Father Suresh Reddy Thirumalareddy
St. Alphonsus, McComb & St. James, Magnolia

April 18
Father Vijaya Manohar Reddy
St. Francis, Brookhaven

April 19
Father Sebastian Myladiyil, SVD
Sacred Heart, Greenville & St. Francis, Shaw

April 24
Father Arokia Stanislaus Savio
St. Peter, Grenada

April 26
Father Jesuraj Xavier
St. Francis, New Albany

Thank you for answering the call!

Calendar of events


CLINTON Holy Savior, Ladies Lenten Retreat in McGing Hall on Saturday, April 1 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. with Father Lincoln Dall and Carmelite Sister Anna Maria. Details: church office (601) 924-6344.
METAIRIE, La. Five-day Silent Directed Retreat, June 26 –July 2 at the Archdiocese of New Orleans Retreat Center (5500 Saint Mary Street, Metairie). Cost $500, includes room and board. Meet daily with a spiritual director, pray with scripture and spend the rest of the day in silence, prayer and rest. Register at franu.edu/retreat. Details: tyler.trahan@franu.edu or call (225) 526-1694.

COLUMBUS Annunciation, Blood Drive, Sunday, March 26 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Bank First parking lot.
FLOWOOD St. Paul, Women’s Sports Team afternoon of bowling at Fannin Lanes, Sunday, March 26 at 2 p.m. RSVP to (601) 927-4533. Cost to bowl is $5.25 per person; shoe rental $4.
GREENVILLE St. Joseph School, Muffuletta Sale, Pick up on April 20 from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tickets available at school or church office. Details: church office (662) 335-5251.
JACKSON St. Richard, Men’s Prayer Breakfast with Bishop Kopacz, Monday, April 3 at 7 a.m. in Foley Hall following Mass at 6:30 a.m. Details: contact Anthony at (601) 573-8574 or eanthonythomas@gmail.com.
MADISON St. Catherine’s Village, Alzheimer’s Caregiver Support Group, meets fourth Wednesday of each month from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Campbell Cove building. Lunch provided. All are welcome. Details: call to RSVP (601) 856-0123 or email cynthia.armstrong@fmolhs.org.
SOUTHAVEN Christ the King, Blood Drive, Sunday, March 26 from 12-3 p.m. Sign up sheets in gathering space. Details: church office (662) 342-1073.
SOUTHAVEN Christ the King, Resurrection Party, Sunday, April 16 at 3 p.m. Details: church office (662) 342-1073.
TUPELO St. James, Rise Up, Monday, April 10 in Shelton Hall. Dinner at 5:30 p.m.; Scripture, testimony, worship at 6:30 p.m. A night of food, fellowship and worship. All ages welcome. Nursery will be provided. Details: church office (662) 231-0981.

BATESVILLE St. Mary, Easter Egg Hunt after 10:30 a.m. Mass on Easter Sunday. Please bring three dozen or so plastic filled Easter eggs and tape them closed.
COLUMBUS Annunciation, Easter Festival, Sunday, April 2 from 2-4 p.m. CYO teens are hosting an Easter egg hunt, games and snacks. Event open to children birth to fifth grade. Event at Annunciation School. Donations of candy are needed. Details: church office (662) 328-2927.
FLOWOOD St. Paul, Easter Egg Hunt by Knights of Columbus, following 10:30 Mass on April 2. Report to Learning Center cafeteria for instructions.
HERNANDO Holy Spirit, Easter Egg Hunt, Sunday, April 2 at 11:45 a.m. Egg hunts by age groups (0-3; 4-6; 7-10). Lunch provided and prizes awarded.
MADISON St. Francis, Easter Sunday Egg Hunt, Please drop off filled eggs in the Family Life Center collection boxes by Palm Sunday. (No nuts, peanut butter or hard candy, please.)
PEARL St. Jude, Easter Egg Hunt, Sunday, April 9 at 10 a.m.
SENATOBIA St. Gregory, Pot-luck meal and Egg Hunt after Easter Sunday Mass on April 9. Mass at 8 a.m.
YAZOO CITY St. Mary, Easter Egg Hunt, immediately following Mass on Easter Sunday. Please place candy filled eggs in the box at the back of the church.

COLUMBUS Annunciation School, Draw Down and Art Auction, Friday, April 14 at the Trotter Convention Center from 6:30-11 p.m. Adults only (21 and up). Event includes dinner and open bar. Details: email psa.acseagles@gmail.com.
FLOWOOD St. Paul, Men’s Retreat sponsored by the Knights of Columbus on May 20. For all men of St. Paul parish age 18 and up.
GREENVILLE Paul and Wadel Abide Memorial Golf Classic, Friday, May 12 at the Greenville Golf and Country Club. Cost: 4-person scramble $150 per golfer, includes cart fee, drink tickets and entry to social. Non-golfers cost is $60 and includes two drink tickets and entry to social. Enjoy food, drinks, door prizes and awards after golfing. Proceeds benefit St. Joseph School Scholarship Fund. Details: school office (662) 378-9711.
HERNANDO Holy Spirit, Yard Sale, Friday, May 19-20. Start saving item donations now. Donations accepted beginning May 8. Details: church office (662) 429-7851.
Holy Spirit, Vacation Bible School, June 5-8 from 6-8 p.m.
JACKSON 17th Annual Sister Thea Bowman School Draw Down, Saturday, April 29 at 6:30 p.m. in the school multi-purpose building. $5,000 Grand prize. Cost $100, second chance insurance extra $20 per ticket. Details: (601) 351-5197 or stbdrawdown@gmail.com.
MADISON St. Francis, Rocky Railway VBS express, June 19-22 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. All pre-K4 through fourth graders are invited. Details: mc.george@stfrancismadison.org.
MERIDIAN St. Patrick School, Countdown scheduled for April 21. Grandprize $5,000. Cost: $100 each.
MERIDIAN Knights of Columbus State Convention, April 28-30 at the Threefoot Hotel. For more information visit: kofc-ms.org/convention/2023
NATCHEZ Cathedral, 39th annual Crawfish Countdown, Friday, May 5. Join us for a fun night of crawfish, ice-cold beverages, chance to win $5,000 and more.

ENGAGED ENCOUNTER WEEKENDS April 28-30 at Lake Tiak O’Khata in Lousiville; July 14-16 and Oct. 27-29 at Camp Garaywa in Clinton. Please register at www.jacksondiocese.org/family-ministry.
NATIONAL BLACK CATHOLIC CONGRESS GATHERING, July 20-23 at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in Oxon Hill, Maryland. Join with other Black Catholics and those who minister to Black Catholics for a celebration of faith and culture. Details: nbccongress.org.
INDIANAPOLIS Eucharistic Congress, July 17-21, 2024. Registration is now open. See what Our Lord has in store for this next chapter for the Catholic Church in United States. Purchase tickets at https://bit.ly/3ydav9Q. Details: EucharisticCongress.org.
INDIANAPOLIS National Catholic Youth Conference (NCYC), Nov. 16-18, 2023 at the Indiana Convention Center. This distinctly Catholic three-day conference will include opportunities for spiritual growth, prayer, learning and service. For more information, visit ncyc.us.
VOCATIONS RETREAT Come and See event for men ages 16-24 at St. Joseph Seminary College, March 31 through April 2. Details: for more information or to sign-up contact nick.adam@jacksondiocese.org or (601) 969-4020.
WORLD YOUTH DAY: LISBON 2023 Event for young Catholics ages 16-35, though all are welcomed to attend in Lisbon, Portugal. For more information visit: https://www.lisboa2023.org/en/.

HATTIESBURG – Msgr. Joseph Mercier, a retired priest of the Diocese of Biloxi passed on Monday, March 20 at the age of 96. A recording of the Funeral Mass can be found at facebook.com/CatholicDioceseBiloxi. Msgr. Mercier will be buried at Sacred Heart Cemetery in Hattiesburg.
NEW ORLEANS – Bishop Fernand (Ferd) Joseph Cheri III, OFM, a New Orleans native who had served since 2015 as auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, died March 21 at age 71 at Chateau de Notre Dame in New Orleans following a lengthy illness.
Bishop Cheri, 71, served most recently as administrator of St. Peter Claver Parish in New Orleans until kidney and heart problems forced him to step away from active ministry. He was born with one kidney and had been on dialysis three days a week for several months.
“He has been called home to the Lord,” Archbishop Gregory Aymond said. “We mourn his death and thank God for his life and ministry.”

Missionaries bring ‘joy of God’ to Natchez

By Stacy Graning/The Natchez Democrat

NATCHEZ – Nearly 30 young men and women brought the joy and love of God to the Natchez community as part of a mission of the Institute of the Incarnate Word.

The mission, coordinated through St. Mary Basilica and St. Joseph Monastery in Adams County, began on March 1 and continued through March 12.

The young men and women are seminarians and postulants preparing to join orders within the Institute of the Incarnate Word and the Servants of the Lord and of the Virgin of Matara, communities that are in relationship with the monks at St. Joseph Monastery at Edgewood.

“They are so full of joy; it is extremely contagious,” said Heddy Boelte, who helped coordinate the mission with the Father Aaron Williams of St. Mary Basilica and the monks at the monastery, which is housed at Edgewood under the generosity of the Boelte family.

“St. Mary’s … host[ed] the novice classes of the communities, meaning the younger men and women who are preparing to make their profession as brothers and sisters,” Boelte said. “During their stay, the missionaries … engaged in evangelical efforts in our area, including visiting homes and preaching.”

Describing the mission as a providential opportunity to share their faith and the love of God, Boelte said the missionaries actively engaged throughout the community during their visit. The program, open to Catholics and people of all faiths, included daily Mass, adorations, home visits with small groups, evening mission talks, visits to Cathedral School, and visits to nursing homes, hospitals and other areas.

(Reprinted with permission of The Natchez Democrat.)

I don’t believe in giving up pizza for Lent

Stewardship Paths
By Julia Williams

JACKSON – Lent is designed to be a time for sacrifice and self-denial, the point of which is to deepen one’s relationship with God and strengthen habits of self-control.

What you ‘give up’ you can ‘offer up’ as a prayer, united with Christ’s sacrifice of the Cross. Fasting is a powerful way to make an impact on the world with your daily prayers, which is why I think giving up pizza is a cop-out.

Photo: BigStock

Is that harsh? Maybe. But I think Lent ought to be.

Unless you eat pizza every day, twice a day, you’re only going to be sacrificing it a few times a week, max! That means your powerful prayers for our broken world are diluted to two, maybe four incidences in seven days instead of the many more opportunities you could have had.

When someone gives up eating between meals, or the sweets they eat 3-4 times a day, they are tempted many times throughout the day to ‘give up’ and ‘give in.’ Then, at each temptation, they’re presented with an opportunity for prayer, for ‘offering up’ their sacrifice with Christ. When you’re hungry all the time, do what St. Paul says in 1 Thessalonians: “Pray constantly.”

Giving up something small or insignificant, like pizza or your weekly trip to the coffee shop, strikes me like Jesus getting all the way to the Cross and saying, “Nah, maybe next week. I’ve done enough today.”
When you love someone, you want to see them all the time. If you’re not with them, you’re thinking about them. You can’t wait to set things aside to spend time with them.

Isn’t your love for Jesus worth setting a few things aside? If you’re going to tell the Lord, who died for your sins, that you only want to pray and sacrifice for Him once or twice a week, I wonder if it would be better not to sacrifice at all. Prayer needs to be daily, or better yet constantly. Fasting is an amazing gift that Jesus taught us to allow us to grow closer to Him.

That’s why I’d never give up pizza for Lent. It’s far too seldom and is too easy to follow the letter of the law and order a calzone instead.

This Lent, think about how you can really challenge yourself with fasting. Fasting is prayer … and prayer is the Stewardship Way of Life.

Excerpts: catholicmom.com/Katie Kimball

Traditional Irish dance is individual and communal, much like faith, priest says

By George P. Matysek Jr.

BALTIMORE (OSV News) – As a lilting Irish hornpipe blared from his smart phone, Jesuit Father Brian Frain’s hard shoes repeatedly smacked a wooden floor with rapid-fire precision. The hypnotic rat-a-tat-tat-tat that echoed in the empty room seemed like the perfect percussive accompaniment to the Celtic tune.

When the music changed to a jig, the priest’s feet flew even faster as he floated across the floor – arms rigidly held alongside his torso.

The music ended, and a smile engulfed the clergyman’s face as he leaped about three feet and kicked.
“You know, I should really have the 911 button ready to go,” said the 59-year-old pastor of St. Ignatius Parish in Baltimore, his breathing slightly heavy after several minutes of high-energy dance. “I’m out of shape.”

Jesuit Father Brian Frain, pastor of St. Ignatius Church in Baltimore, shows a traditional Irish dance step Feb. 6, 2023. He is a former competitive Irish dancer and avid accordion player who first learned Irish dancing at age 5. His father was born in Ireland, as were his maternal grandparents. (OSV News photo/Kevin J. Parks, Catholic Review)

Traditional Irish dance has been an important part of Father Frain’s life ever since he was a boy. His father was born in Ireland, as were his maternal grandparents. His aunt, who first taught him to dance when he was about 5, learned the art form while attending an Irish boarding school. He later studied in an Irish dance school.

Born in Philadelphia and raised in New Jersey, Father Frain remembers falling in love with the beauty of the movement. He won several regional Irish dance championships and once competed at the national level. From 1987 to 1992, he ran his own school of Irish dancing before giving it up to enter religious life.
Father Frain, who earned his dance licensure from An Coimisiún Le Rincí Gaelacha in Dublin, the world’s premier Irish dance commission, also taught with Irish dance groups at Fordham University in New York, St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia and Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri.

Now just under a year into his new pastoral assignment in Baltimore, he plans to offer Irish dance classes at St. Ignatius this Lent. Over the years, he has helped three people earn their certification to teach Irish dance.

Irish dance is both individual and communal, Father Frain said, much like the practice of the Catholic faith.
“It takes a lot of coordination and perfection with others,” he told the Catholic Review, the news outlet of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. “You are no longer just a self, but you’re part of a community and you can’t do what you want. You have to lift your leg exactly at the same height that the others lifted. You have to lift your hands at the precise millisecond that the others lift their hands. It requires you to stop thinking individually and start thinking of who’s around you.”

Father Frain, who has visited Ireland seven times, also plays the accordion and enjoys monthly Irish jam sessions in the rectory with a cousin. He recently began serving as chaplain to the Baltimore-area Lady’s Ancient Order of Hibernians.

“There’s a joy that’s expressed in Irish dancing,” he said. “I just love it when I see kids dancing and they know what they’re doing and that they can do it. It’s a beautiful thing.”

(George Matysek Jr. is managing editor of the Catholic Review, news outlet of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.)

Annual tournament raises funds for seminarian education

By Joe Lee

MADISON – The annual Luella and Floyd Q. Doolittle Memorial Golf Classic has an updated title to honor the family matriarch who passed away in January, but the family’s devotion to seminarian education and the Knights of Columbus goes back decades.

“(My brother) Floyd and I are grateful to the Knights for carrying on this great cause,” said Roger Doolittle. “Dad and Mom both felt strongly that there should be local support for seminarian education to educate priests for our diocese. Our parents felt that this was a worthwhile cause and enjoyed greatly the fellowship with the Knights of Columbus and their spouses in this endeavor.”

The tournament, which has raised as much as $15,000 in past years, is set for Saturday, April 15 at 1 p.m. at Whisper Lake Golf Club in Madison. Every single penny brought in goes toward priest education.
“We want to leave the door as open as possible for young men to discern the priesthood,” said Father Nick Adam, Director of Vocations for the Diocese of Jackson. “Part of this is making sure that the cost of seminary education is never a hurdle that they have to clear. It costs about $50,000 a year to educate one seminarian.

The annual Luella and Floyd Q. Doolittle Memorial Golf Classic will take place on Saturday, April 15 at 1 p.m. at the Whisper Lake Golf Club in Madison. Proceeds from the event support diocesan seminarians.

“This includes tuition, books, room, board, and other necessary supplies and services that a seminarian needs during the year so he can focus on listening to the Lord’s voice during his discernment. This budget year, we allocated almost $400,000 for tuition, books, and fees alone, and that’s before providing the seminarians with stipends, insurance and other necessities.”

Tunney Vandevender, a past Grand Knight with St. Francis of Assisi Council 9543 in Madison, is an avid golfer as well as a strong supporter of the tournament’s cause.

“Having lately seen a surge in local Mississippi men making decisions to go to seminary, time is of the essence in generating support for them,” Vandevender said. “Seminarian education is essentially a college education steeped in theology and Catholicism.

“Given the cost to send one seminarian for one year to seminary, it is imperative to help lighten the financial strain on the diocese and others involved. (The tournament) shows our support for their brave decisions in a world that often is against them and our faith.”

Vandevender described the course as being moderately challenging, with water in places and varying elevations. He finds it shorter than many courses and mentioned a pair of hidden holes that make it fun.
To register an individual or team, visit https://bit.ly/DoolittleGolf2023 through the accompanying QR code, or email information and your questions to Art Ring at somerville3817@gmail.com. Lunch, followed by a putting contest and a closest-to-the-pin contest, will begin the day’s fun at 12 p.m. The tournament begins at 1 p.m. with a shotgun start. A three-course Cajun meal will be served after the awards presentation, which will take place around 4:45 p.m.

Scan or visit https://bit.ly/DoolittleGolf2023 for more information or to register for the Luella and Floyd Q. Doolittle Golf Tournament.


WASHINGTON (OSV News) – Surgical, chemical or other interventions that aim “to exchange” a person’s “sex characteristics” for those of the opposite sex “are not morally justified,” said the U.S. bishops’ doctrine committee in a statement released March 20. “What is of great concern, is the range of technological interventions advocated by many in our society as treatments for what is termed ‘gender dysphoria’ or ‘gender incongruence,’” it said. The statement urged “particular care” be taken “to protect children and adolescents, who are still maturing and who are not capable of providing informed consent” for surgical procedures or treatments such as chemical puberty blockers, which arrest the natural course of puberty and prevent the development of some sex characteristics in the first place.” Technological advances that enable the cure of “many human maladies” today and “promise to cure many more” have “been a great boon to humanity,” but there are “moral limits to technological manipulation of the human body,” it said. “The human person, body and soul, man or woman, has a fundamental order and finality whose integrity must be respected.” The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Administrative Committee March 15 approved release of the 14-page statement by the USCCB’s Committee on Doctrine, chaired by Bishop Daniel E. Flores of Brownsville, Texas.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (OSV News) – In a legislative development that has drawn concern from both Catholic and labor leaders, Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, R-Ark., signed into law March 8 the Youth Hiring Act of 2023 which eliminates state age verification for children younger than 16 seeking a job. Arkansas law previously stipulated the Arkansas Department of Labor issue an official employment certificate for minors under 16 seeking to work, which included parental or guardian permission, a job description and schedule – measures considered a deterrent to potential child labor law violators. Dennis Lee, diocesan chancellor for administrative affairs, told OSV News the Little Rock Diocese “is concerned about the exploitation of children and youth under the age of 16 to perform dangerous jobs.” He said removing the “reasonable, non-burdensome law” means they will have to rely on enforcement of remaining state and federal laws to protect children. Benjamin Smith, senior child labor specialist at the International Labor Organization, said the law’s removal “only heightens the risk that children will become involved in child labor.” The law’s revision also increases risks to migrant children as parental permissions on file with the state are no longer required. The U.S. Labor Department reports it has 600 ongoing child labor investigations, while witnessing a 69% increase in children illegally employed since 2018. The department called for Congress to take action, noting Feb. 27 “the challenge of child labor exploitation – particularly of migrant children – increases nationwide.”

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (OSV News) – Wyoming became the first state in the nation to specifically ban the use or prescription of abortion pills on March 17. Gov. Mark Gordon, R-Wyo., signed the law with a ruling by a federal judge in Texas still outstanding that could potentially implement a nationwide ban on the drug mifepristone amid a legal challenge brought by pro-life groups. The state’s legislature passed two pieces of legislation in March that would restrict abortion in the state, but the governor allowed the other bill to become law without his signature.

VATICAN CITY (OSV News) – Reflecting on people’s right to remain in their country of origin, share in the common good and live in dignity will be the focus of Pope Francis’ next message for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees. The pope chose “Free to choose whether to migrate or to stay” as the theme for the 2023 world day, which will be celebrated Sept. 24. The Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development released the theme of the message March 21. The pope chose this theme to foster “renewed reflection on a right that has not yet been codified at the international level: the right not to have to migrate or, in other words, the right to be able to remain in one’s own land,” the dicastery said in a communique. “The right to remain is older, more deeply rooted and broader than the right to migrate,” the dicastery said. “It includes the possibility of sharing in the common good, the right to live in dignity and to have access to sustainable development.”

VATICAN CITY (CNS) – The faithful must set aside their egos and sense of superiority over others to make room for God and his tender mercy, Pope Francis said at a Lenten penance service. “Only those who are poor in spirit and who are conscious of their need of salvation and forgiveness come into the presence of God,” he said March 17. And those whose hearts are filled with haughty, self-righteous comparisons and judgment, “you will go to hell,” he said in his homily. The pope led the penance service in a Rome parish, rather than St. Peter’s Basilica, to mark the start of the worldwide celebration of “24 Hours for the Lord.” In his homily, the pope talked about the danger of being proud of one’s “religious accomplishments” and believing oneself better than others. “Brothers, sisters, let us remember this: The Lord comes to us when we step back from our presumptuous ego,” the pope said.

UNITED NATIONS (OSV News) – It was his first speaking engagement at the United Nations’ headquarters in New York, and Gabriel Cobb, who has Down syndrome, was admittedly “a little nervous.” But it was obviously nothing the 22-year-old Catholic from St. Louis couldn’t handle. “I am Gabriel, God’s messenger,” he told OSV News in a March 17 interview, moments before he was set to address a U.N. gathering of advocates for those with Down syndrome and autism who were discussing the challenges faced by families raising children with different developmental expectations and milestones. Gabriel’s speech highlighted the role his family played in his life. “I have two loving parents who have always kept the ball high,” Gabriel told the U.N. conference hall. Gabriel explained he was a triathlon athlete, which meant he swam, ran and biked all in one race – and not just once, but 10 times. “I have done it, I am a triathlete,” he exclaimed, to loud applause. Gabriel vowed “to continue to … compete” and he thanked the “coaches, family and friends, who have encouraged me to press boundaries.” He said, “I pray that I have given them joy and inspiration. Because, with their help, I have Down syndrome and I have no limitations.”

WARSAW, Poland (OSV News) – Polish church leaders have welcomed renewed calls for the beatification of a popular priest, Father Franciszek Blachnicki (1921-1987), following official confirmation that he was killed by communist secret police agents. “Most Poles still feel a sense of unfulfilled justice, and the murder of priests forms part of this – particularly when attempts to uncover the truth still face impediments,” said Father Piotr Mazurkiewicz, former secretary-general of COMECE, the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union. “If Father Blachnicki is beatified, it will be a sign that the church in Poland remains dynamic and vivacious, even though Western secularizing processes are at work here. For people of faith, it will also show that saints and witnesses are still living among us.” A historian working on the case, Andrzej Grajewski, told Poland’s Catholic Information Agency (KAI) March 17 a married couple, Jolanta and Andrzej Gontarczyk, had “crept skillfully” into Father Blachnicki’s trusted inner circle while working as Interior Ministry agents codenamed “Yon” and “Panna,” and had been named by the Poland’s National Remembrance Institute as prime suspects in his murder.

LONDON (OSV News) – England’s Catholic cardinal has pledged his church’s allegiance to King Charles III ahead of his May 6 coronation, as the new monarch praised the work of faith communities in national life. “For so many years, we have observed your desire and unstinting efforts to explore and enhance the well-being of the entire human family, through your commitment to religious faith, protection of the environment and relief of poverty,” said Cardinal Vincent Nichols of Westminster. “The Catholic community is profoundly supportive of these fundamental concerns, as we strive to offer our society, your kingdom, an education for young people that is rooted in faith and its consequent commitment to human dignity.” The cardinal spoke while heading a 12-member Catholic delegation to a March. 9 ceremony in London’s Buckingham Palace, during which similar pledges were made by the representatives of the Protestant Church of England and Church of Scotland and 27 other Christian denominations, as well as of Jewish communities, royal academies, city guilds and historic universities. Meanwhile, the king paid tribute to the contribution of churches and other associations to the United Kingdom’s “national fabric,” and to advancing mutual knowledge and understanding.

Movie reviews

“Jesus Revolution” (Lionsgate)

This is the poster from the movie “Jesus Revolution.” (OSV News photo/Lionsgate)

By John Mulderig
NEW YORK (OSV News) – Warmhearted fact-based drama recounting how large numbers of the Woodstock generation were won over to Evangelical Christianity through the unlikely collaboration between a believing hippy (Jonathan Roumie) and a previously starchy California minister (Kelsey Grammer). As their expanding mission leads to mass baptisms, their eventual converts include a once-troubled teen (Joel Courtney) and his emotionally steadier true love (Anna Grace Barlow). Co-directors Jon Erwin and Brent McCorkle, working from a script penned by the former (with Jon Gunn), craft an appealing look back at a somewhat surprising chapter in Baby Boomer history. Though the sacramental theology briefly referenced is askew from a Catholic perspective, the morality of the tale is a spot-on rejection of hedonism in favor of a more upright life, so there’s little to prevent older kids as well as grown-ups from taking this stroll down psychedelic-era memory lane. Negatively depicted drug use, a potentially upsetting medical situation. The OSV News classification is A-II – adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association rating is PG-13 – parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

“65” (Sony)

Adam Driver stars in a scene from the movie “65.” The OSV News classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. (OSV News photo/Patti Perret, courtesy Sony)

By John Mulderig
NEW YORK (OSV News) – When the spaceship he pilots is wrecked by meteors, a humanoid alien (Adam Driver) crash lands on prehistoric Earth where he and the only other survivor of the disaster, a young passenger (Ariana Greenblatt) who reminds him of the ailing daughter (Chloe Coleman) he left at home, must trek to a rescue vehicle that detached from the main vessel and now lies atop a nearby mountain. Along the way, they’ll have to dodge an array of predatory creatures, including dinosaurs large and small. The determination of Driver’s character to safeguard his accidental protege is admirable and the bond that develops between the two is enjoyable to observe. But most of the action is devoted to the miseries of the Mesozoic Era, making co-writers and directors Scott Beck and Bryan Woods’ sci-fi adventure a toilsome slog for viewers, albeit one that includes few objectionable ingredients, making it probably acceptable for older teens. Images of a gory wound, potentially upsetting plot developments, at least one mild oath, about a half-dozen crude terms. The OSV News classification is A-III – adults. The Motion Picture Association rating is PG-13 – parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

“Scream VI” (Paramount)

Melissa Barrera, Jenna Ortega, Jasmin Savoy Brown, and Mason Gooding star in a scene from the “Scream VI.” The OSV News classification is O — morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association rating is R — restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian. (OSV News photo/Philippe Bossé, Paramount Pictures and Spyglass Media Group’s)

By Kurt Jensen
NEW YORK (OSV News) – Dreary horror flick in which the franchise’s trademark masked killer – or someone simply dressed in his guise – menaces the lives of an array of young actors while also targeting series veterans now regarded as “legacy” characters. The latter include two sisters (Melissa Barrera and Jenna Ortega) as well as a duo of other survivors of the 2022 reboot (Mason Gooding and Jasmin Savoy Brown). Co-directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett and screenwriters James Vanderbilt and Guy Busick move the mayhem from fictional Woodsboro, California, to New York City on a long Halloween weekend. But the gruesomes excesses of earlier outings remain, resulting in gore galore. Pervasive bloody violence, including gunplay, some sexual references, occasional profanity, frequent rough language. The OSV News rating is O – morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association rating is R – restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

“Creed III” (United Artists)

By John Mulderig
NEW YORK (OSV News) – Actor Michael B. Jordan makes his directorial debut with this second sequel to the 2015 reboot of the storied “Rocky” franchise in which he also reprises his role as the champion pugilist of the title. Now retired from the ring, he’s enjoying a prosperous life with his hearing-impaired singer-turned-producer wife (Tessa Thompson) and their deaf daughter (Mila Davis-Kent) while also working as a promoter and co-managing (with Wood Harris) the gym where the current champ (José Benavidez) trains. But his tranquility is shattered when a childhood friend (Jonathan Majors) re-enters his life after serving a long prison term for an incident in which they were both involved but from which he successfully fled. Morally shaded characters add complexity and depth as the plot moves toward a pair of trademark showdowns while Keegan Coogler and Zach Baylin’s script plays creatively on the underdog theme with which the whole saga began. The film’s exploration of guilt, emotional repression and the importance of family may outweigh its earthier elements in the judgment of those making viewing decisions on behalf of older teens. Harsh physical violence, marital sensuality, mature themes, including the physical abuse of children, at least one rough term, about a half-dozen instances each of mild swearing and crude language, a few crass expressions. The OSV News classification is A-III – adults. The Motion Picture Association rating is PG-13 – parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

(Mulderig is on the staff of Catholic News Service and Kurt Jensen is a guest reviewer for OSV News.)

Vatican accepts ‘positio’ in Mother Lange’s cause; dicastery to review documents on her life

By Matthew Liptak
ARBUTUS, Md. (OSV News) – The canonization cause of Mother Mary Lange, founder of the world’s first sustained women’s religious community for Black women, has taken a step forward.

Sister Rita Michelle Proctor, superior general of the Baltimore-based Oblate Sisters of Providence, said her religious community received a Feb. 27 email from the Vatican informing the sisters that it has approved the “positio” – the documentation on the life of Mother Lange, which includes both the theological and historical record of her life.

Sister Rita Michelle made the announcement March 5 at her religious community’s motherhouse in Arbutus, just outside Baltimore, during the annual conferral of the Mother Lange Awards honoring local Catholics active in the Black Catholic community.

More than 300 people broke into applause and cheers at the news.

“I don’t want you to go and say Sister Rita Michelle has just gone and proclaimed Mother Lange a saint,” the superior general said, noting that the sisters have long considered their religious community’s founder a saint in their hearts.

Mother Lange established St. Frances Academy in Baltimore in 1828 to educate Black children in an era of slavery.

A painting depicts Mother Mary Elizabeth Lange, who founded the Oblate Sisters of Providence in Baltimore, the world’s first sustained women’s religious community for Black women. Sister Rita Michelle Proctor, the order’s superior general, announced March 5, 2023, that Mother Lange’s canonization cause has taken one step forward with the Vatican accepting the “positio,” or documentation about her life. (OSV News photo/courtesy Catholic Review)

Mother Lange’s positio will go to the Dicastery for the Causes of Saints for review, Sister Rita Michelle said.

“Once they have concluded the review, it will be sent to Pope Francis, and he will declare Mother Mary Lange venerable,” she said.

“Venerable” is a declaration of a sainthood candidate’s heroic virtues. Next would come beatification, after which she would be called “Blessed.” The third step is canonization. In general, the last two steps require a miracle attributed to the intercession of the sainthood candidate and verified by the church.

Baltimore Archbishop William E. Lori said he was excited to hear the news about the latest development in Mother Lange’s cause.

“With each step forward, more people learn about the life and legacy of our beloved Mother Lange,” he said. “She unlocked educational opportunities for children in Baltimore and beyond during her lifetime – and that impact continues today. The Oblate Sisters have worked very hard to help bring about this key development. Along with so many others, we are delighted.”

The uplifting news was just one highlight of the annual awards ceremony, meant to honor the good works of dozens of parishioners from traditionally Black parishes in the Archdiocese of Baltimore.
The program also included singing performances, opening remarks and a prayer by Auxiliary Bishop Bruce A. Lewandowski,, a historic portrayal and presentation of Mother Mary Lange by Catholic storyteller Janice Curtis Greene, as well as formal public recognition for award recipients.

“God spoke to me and told me that I could make a difference,” said Greene, speaking in character as Mother Lange. “And I wanted to be a powerful woman of God – something I had hoped for and prayed for my entire life.”

Those honored with Mother Lange Awards were applauded as they were introduced. Over 40 parishioners from a dozen parishes received the awards for leadership and service. Youth were among the awardees.
In his remarks, Bishop Lewandowski recalled the service of fellow Redemptorist Father Thaddeus Anwander, who is considered by the Oblate Sisters of Providence to be the second founder of their order.
Faced with the order’s dissolution in its early days, Father Anwander went to the archbishop of Baltimore to plead their case. When the archbishop told him no one in Baltimore wanted “colored” sisters, he persisted anyway – prostrating himself before his superior.

“At that point, (Archbishop Samuel) Eccelston was ashamed, because a priest got on his knees and begged to be a servant of the women he was intending to dismiss – holy women, women in the service of God’s people in the church,” Bishop Lewandowski said.

The bishop concluded his remarks by leading the audience in a simple prayer to Divine Providence.
“Providence did. Providence can. And Providence will,” he prayed. “Let that be our prayer today.”

Mother Lange is one of six African American Catholics who are candidates for sainthood. The others are: Julia Greeley, who after her emancipation from enslavement joined the Secular Franciscan Order and promoted devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus; Sister Thea Bowman, a Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration, who was a noted educator and evangelist; Father Augustus Tolton, the first publicly known Black Catholic priest in the United States; Sister Henriette Delille, who founded the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Family; and Pierre Toussaint, a formerly enslaved philanthropist who supported many Catholic charitable works.

Mother Lange, Greeley and Sister Bowman all have the title “Servant of God,” bestowed when a sainthood cause is officially opened. The latter three in the list have been given title “Venerable.”

(Matthew Liptak writes for the Catholic Review, the news outlet of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.)

Mundo en Fotos

Fieles asisten a Misa afuera de la basílica de Nuestra Señora de Luján en Argentina, 11 de marzo de 2023. La Misa marcó el 10° aniversario de la elección del Papa Francisco y el 15° aniversario de un programa de rehabilitación de drogas que él ha defendido. (Foto OSV Noticias/David Agren)
Mujeres rezan el rosario afuera de la Clínica Reproductiva de Mujeres de Nuevo México en Santa Teresa el 13 de enero de 2023. Un proyecto de ley aprobado en marzo por ambas cámaras de la Legislatura de Nuevo México, la Protección de la Salud Reproductiva y de Afirmación de Género Ley, impediría que los gobiernos locales restrinjan el aborto o los tratamientos de reasignación de género. (Izq.) (Foto OSV News/Evelyn Hockstein, Reuters)
El padre jesuita Brian Frain, pastor de la Iglesia St. Ignatius en Baltimore, muestra un paso de danza tradicional irlandesa el 6 de febrero de 2023. Es un exbailarín irlandés competitivo y ávido acordeonista que aprendió danza irlandesa por primera vez a los 5 años. Su padre nació en Irlanda, al igual que sus abuelos maternos. (Foto OSV News/Kevin J. Parks, Catholic Review)
n caballo pasta en un campo entre gansos en una granja en Huntingtown, Maryland, el 11 de marzo de 2022. (Foto de CNS)