In the Vineyard: October 24, 2014

In the Vineyard :: October 24, 2014 :: Volume 14, Issue 20

News From National

Thank You!
We have met the donor challenge, which began with the Board matching the initial donation of $6,500 and YOU matching (exceeding) that $13,000.

Your total? $28,243 in the weeks from Oct. 1 to Oct. 15.

The grand total: $41,243.

A heartfelt thank you for all your generous support. We will keep you posted on the two specific projects we mentioned in the challenge, the Financial Working group’s project and the Healing Circle model of restorative justice. You have made it possible to forge ahead with these and with projects in our women’s roles, ordain married Catholics, clericalism, and many other programs.

Keep the Faith, Change the Church

Voice of the Faithful® sees Synod of Bishops on the Family as signal of hope for reform
The Extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family closed this past Sunday, Oct. 19, and pundits inside and outside the Church are now considering the synod’s ramifications. The most significant occurrence for the Church reform movement Voice of the Faithful® was the synod’s process of listening, openness to all points of view and transparency.

Read full statement:

Did You Know …
That our understanding of the Eucharist today emerges from the Shabbat meals shared by the disciples after the death of Jesus, and from the celebration of Passover?

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church (#1363): “In the liturgical celebration of these events they become in a certain way present and real. This is how Israel understands its liberation from Egypt: every time Passover is celebrated, the Exodus events are made present to the memory of believers so that they may conform their lives to them.”

To learn more about the origins of the Eucharistic meal, read Ron DuBois’s presentation on the Origins of the Eucharist. Ron is a long-time member of VOTF and has served on numerous working groups, from Lay Education to Priest Support to Prayerful Voice. Until recently, he also served on our Board of Trustees and as Vice President of VOTF.

In addition to the summary on the origins of the Eucharist, Ron also provided many of the materials we host on the Prayerful Voice pages of our web site.


Highlighting issues we face working together
to Keep the Faith, Change the Church

No consensus at Vatican as Synod ends
What the Synod did and didn’t do a round up of the good and the bad from this month’s Synod by Father James Martin, SJ.
“A closely watched Vatican assembly on the family ended on Saturday (Oct. 18) without consensus among the bishops in attendance on what to say about gays, and whether to give communion to divorced and remarried Catholics. The bishops’ final report watered down the warm and welcoming language about gays and divorced couples that appeared in a preliminary report released on Monday (Oct. 13), midway through the two-week assembly. Conservative bishops had expressed alarm that the Roman Catholic Church was sending a mixed message on marriage and homosexuality.” By Laurie Goodstein and Elisabetta Povoledo, The New York Times
Final Relatio of synod, plus speech of Pope Francis, On
Synod report narrows open tone, pope calls for middle path, By Joshua J. McElwee, National Catholic Reporter
Synod a win for Francis and for openness, By Thomas Reese,National Catholic Reporter
Catholic bishops narrowly reject a wider welcome to gays, divorced Catholics, By Josephine McKenna, Religion News Service
However dramatic, the Synod of Bishops 2014 was just the beginning, By John L. Allen, Jr.,
At synod, bishops take steps toward transparency, tolerance, Editorial in The Boston Globe
The promise of Synod 2014, By Mary Ann Walsh, America
Synod roundup, By The Editors at America
Seven lessons from the Vatican’s wild and crazy Synod on the Family, By David Gibson, Religion News Service
Five things the Synod just did, By James Martin, SJ, America
What is a Catholic family, By Peter Manseau, Op-Ed in The New York Times

Settlement in lawsuit over priest abuse is revealed
“Roman Catholic leaders in Minnesota pledged on Monday (Oct. 13) to enact new procedures to help protect children from sexual abuse by the clergy as they revealed some terms of the settlement for a lawsuit brought last year by a man who had been abused by a priest when he was a teenage altar boy.” By Julie Bosman, The New York Times
Landmark settlement closes suit against St. Paul-Minneapolis Archdiocese, By Jean Hopfensperger and Chao Xiong, Star Tribune
Questions and answers about Minnesota church abuse settlement, By James Nord, Associated Press, in Star Tribune
Cardinal George discusses successor, pope, defense of doctrine
“In a sweeping interview weeks before he steps down, Cardinal Francis George expressed frustration that his defense of church doctrine has ever caused offense, discussed the story behind his successor’s selection and voiced concerns that expectations placed upon the popular Pope Francis could backfire. ‘They’ve got the pope in a box now. … The danger of that is he’s like a Rorschach test, sort of,’ George, 77, said Monday (Oct. 20) during an hour-long conversation at the archbishop’s Gold Coast residence in which he expressed both pride and remorse about his 17 years as archbishop.” By Manya Brachear Pashman,Chicago Tribune
Click here to read the rest of this issue of Focus …

Father Donald Cozzens Speaks at Elephant in the Living Room
Transcribed by Bev Parker

Following is the transcript of the talk Father Donald Cozzens gave at SS. Simon & Jude in Westland, MI on Wednesday, September 17, 2014. Father Cozzens spoke about his new book, Notes from the Underground, and his dream of a “Catholic Spring” and what is shaking the foundations of the Church.

Introduction by Bishop Thomas Gumbleton
Good afternoon, and welcome to another presentation by the Elephants. Our speaker today is Fr. Donald Cozzens from John Carroll University in Cleveland. Don spoke to us a few years ago, and is here with us again. First of all, a little bit about his life. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio and attended Catholic schools there. And in fact, when he was in first grade – I read this about him – he said, “I knew from the first day in the first grade that I wanted to be a parish priest.” When I read that I kind of laughed, because you heard the joke about God? “You want to make God laugh? Plan your life.” Well, Don did; he becomes a parish priest. He was ordained in 1965, and became a parish priest, but only for six years. His long life as a priest has included being a teacher, a pastoral psychologist, a seminary rector, and vicar for clergy in the diocese in Cleveland. So much of his life has been in ministry to priests; and he is very, very familiar with the priesthood, its problems and successes, and so on. He has become kind of an expert on the Catholic priesthood and has published a number of books that started with The Changing Face of the Priesthood. Then he wrote Sacred Silence: Denial and Crises in the Church: Faith that Dares to Speak, Freeing Celibacy; and then the book that probably has brought us together today, Notes from the Underground.

A review of the book by Fr. John McElby, a priest from Philadelphia, says, “Right off the spiritual journey of Fr. Donald Cozzens, priest of the diocese of Cleveland, is a roller coaster ride, a cry of the heart; a new personal crises, which began in the 1980s, and worsened with the ongoing revelations of secrecy, incompetence and dishonesty of Church authorities around the pedophilia crises.” He quotes Don as saying, “I came to feel, and soon came to think, that I belonged to an underground Church, disoriented, slightly out of place, and much of the time unsure of my identity as a priest.” The reviewer, Fr. McElby, says, “Give or take five years, I am the same age and vintage as Fr. Cozzens. A younger set of priests calls us, or at least some of us, Vatican II priests; and so we are brothers of a curious state of misplaced enthusiasm.” (Laughter) I must say, that happens here in Detroit too. But now Fr. Cozzens comes back to us to speak with new enthusiasm in which he will share with us about his pope: New Pope; New Hope: New Notes from the Underground. I’m happy to welcome Fr. Don. (Much laughter) (Applause)


New Pope; New Hope: Out from the Underground Fr. Donald Cozzens
Thank you, Bishop Gumbleton, for those gracious words. I knew two things in the first grade. As Tom indicated, I wanted to be a priest, and I was in love with Joanne Mahoney; (Laughter) and she was in my homeroom for twelve years, first grade through high school. Talk about the agony and the ecstasy. (Laughter) But Joanne is happily married now, and I’m happily ordained. I believe I can put it that way. Thank you for inviting me back. It is a pleasure to be with you good people. I believe this is my third meeting with the Elephants in the Living Room; and you have truly grown in size, and in wisdom, and in grace; so I’m delighted to be with you this afternoon.

And I’d like to begin with a question: Now that the Jesuit from Argentina, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, is Pope Francis, the Bishop of Rome, can we, should we, expect a Catholic spring? My remarks this afternoon will take a stab at answering that question.



In and Out of Our Lives
Sponsored by Sacred Threads, Bethany House of Prayer, and the Office of Spiritual and Religious Life at Wellesley College
In an extraordinary collaboration, Sister Joan Chittister, OSB, and award-winning artist Janet McKenzie will explore the sacred in our lives during their talk The Way of the Cross: In and Out of Our Lives.

Sister Joan will take you on an excursion through life — its challenges, its crosses, and from them, the rising to new life, as shown to us in the life of Jesus. Through each experience, she will identify the call that is being given, how Jesus models a response, and the grace-filled rebirth that is given to us through each experience.

Janet will bring you into the mystery of transformation, illuminating the eternal in present time.

All are welcome.

Houghton Chapel, Wellesley College
106 Central St., Wellesley, MA 02481

Nov. 15, 2014
Doors open at 8:45 a.m.
Talk 9:45 a.m.-Noon

$50.00; Religious and Students, $25.00

More information and directions at: or

10% discount for Sacred Threads members. Enter discount code MEMBER at checkout when ordering online.

If not ordering tickets online, send check payable to Sacred Threads, 71 Walnut Park, Newton, MA 02458, or Bethany House of Prayer, 181 Appleton St., Arlington, MA 02476.

VOTFNJ presents
David Gibson speaking on
Evangelization as Revolution:
How Pope Francis is Changing the Church.

Pope Francis is an enormously popular figure, but many people also want to know whether that popularity will translate into real change in the Catholic Church. David Gibson, Catholic author and national reporter for Religious News Service, will look at how Francis is trying to reform the church and how his style really is substance.

But will his style outlive his papacy?

Thursday, November 20, 2014,
7:30 PM
St. Mark Lutheran Church
100 Harter Road, Morristown, NJ

An award-winning journalist, author, filmmaker and a convert to Catholicism, David Gibson specializes in writing about religion. He has covered the religion beat in his native New Jersey and written for leading magazines and newspapers including The New York Times, Newsweek,The Wall Street Journal, New Yorkmagazine, Commonweal, and America. The Coming Catholic Church: How the Faithful are Shaping the New American Catholicism is one of his two books on Catholicism. Gibson has won the Templeton Religion Reporter of the Year Award, the top honor for journalists covering religion in the secular press, and has twice won from the American Academy of Religion their top prize for writing on religion. A regular TV and radio commentator, he has appeared on ABC, NBC, and CNN News and PBS’ Religion and Ethics Newsweekly.

Saint Susanna Parish
These programs are on Monday evenings, and run from 7:00 to 9:00 at Saint Susanna Parish Hall, 262 Needham Street, Dedham. There is no pre-registration and no fee, although free will offerings to cover our costs will be gratefully accepted.

November 17 – DVD and Discussion – “Journey of the Universe”
“Journey of the Universe” is an epic film that covers the sweep of time, beginning with life’s origins 14 billion years ago, up to the present. It reverentially examines the evolution of cosmos and Earth as a “profound process of creativity, connection, and interdependence.” Modern science is combined with cultural wisdom to posit provocative questions about the effects of human behavior on the earth’s body. The film was written by Mary Evelyn Tucker and Brian Swimme and produced by Tucker and her husband, John Grimm, professors at Yale University and founders of the Forum on Religion and Ecology. All three were strongly influenced in their work by the late Fr. Thomas Berry, cultural historian who urged us to address the ravages and disruptions of human hubris on the Earth and become its benign stewards.

The film will be followed by a period for Q&A and Discussion.
This is a co-presentation with Saint Susanna Peace and Justice Committee, Pat Ferrone, Chair.

St. Phoebe Center ‘Women & Diaconal Ministry:
Past, Present & Future’

Saturday, December 6, 2014 / 9 AM to 5 PM
Union Theological Seminary
3041 Broadway @ 121st St., NY, 10027

THE PAST Build a solid understanding of the female diaconate in the early and medieval Church with presentations and discussion that explore the ministry and the attempts at the restoration of the office in the modern era through the work of Evangelos Theodorou, the decisions of the Rhodes Consultation, and the churches of Russia and Greece.

THE PRESENT Learn about the ‘diaconal’ work that women are doing today as chaplains, spiritual directors, ministers of the Word, and parish administrators and outreach coordinators.

THE FUTURE Explore why an ordained ministry is necessary, how a deaconess would/could serve today, and what short-term and long-term steps could be taken for restoration of the office as well as rejuvenation of the entire di-aconate—male and female—for the building up of the Church today.

SPEAKERS Sister Rebecca of New Skete Monastery; Valerie A. Karras, ThD, PhD; AnnMarie
Mecera; Clio Pavlantos, MDiv; Teva Regule, PhD (candidate); Caren Stayer, PhD; Phyllis Zagano, PhD; and more.

CONFERENCE WILL INCLUDE presentations, a panel discussion, breakout session, Q&A after each session, and the opportunity for networking.

LIMITED LODGING AVAILABLE at Union Theological Seminary.
Room with one twin is available at $135 per room (two night minimum) Room with two twin beds is $165 (two night minimum).

More information on lodging here.

People of Conscience: Reforming the Church Today
A Conversation with Fr. Tony Flannery
Founder of the Association of Catholic Priests in Ireland
Author of A Question of Conscience
Tuesday, October 28, 2014, 7:00 PM
First Church and Parish in Dedham
Unitarian Universalist
670 High Street, Dedham
Light Reception to Follow Presentation. For more information,

Letter to the Editor

Dear VOTF,
As the Extraordinary Synod on the Family is nearing its end in Rome, I’m thinking about how the Faithful can make their Voice heard in the next year. Perhaps more laypeople and a more diverse group will be invited to attend 2015’s synod, but the bishops and cardinals in the meantime will be continuing their reflections and discussions. They will need to hear from pastors and parishioners and others as well. Perhaps at the parish level, synod-like discussion groups could be formed, taking topics from the coming Relatio, and sharing their own equivalent of one, a summary of their discussions and conclusions, with their pastor and bishop.

A major aspect of the synod is improving pastoral practice. How would we like to see pastoral practice improved? How do we see our needs, and how the Church can help? How would we ourselves like the Church to “accompany” us?

M. Annette Joseph

Questions, Comments?

Please send them to Siobhan Carroll, Vineyard Editor, Unless otherwise indicated, I will assume comments can be published as Letters to the Editor.

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