Across the Archdiocese: A round-up of the latest and greatest

Saint Vincent de Paul Society launches “House in a Box” for tornado survivors 

The Society of Saint Vincent de Paul hosted a grand opening ceremony for their House in a Box program Saturday, July 20. This effort will provide crucial household items to survivors of the recent Oklahoma tornadoes. At around 2 p.m. in the heat of the Saint Vincent de Paul warehouse, Archbishop Paul Coakley blessed the household items and the men and women who gave of their time and treasure to make the effort possible. In attendance were representatives and volunteers from the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul, the Knights of Columbus, Catholic Charities, United Way, Tempur-Pedic and Mathis Brothers Furniture.

After the blessing and ribbon-cutting, Archbishop Coakley said he was glad the archdiocese is a part of the program. “We give thanks to God for the generosity that has overwhelmed us. We are proud to be a part of this as Catholics and citizens of the United States. I am grateful to the first responders to the disasters, the second responders and those who continue to respond.”

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Catholic Foundation: Building endowments, growing our Church

In the Old Testament, the Jews were instructed to take their tithes" to the storehouse," which was the temple — the center of religion for the entire country. Today, since the Body of Christ has so many manifestations (your parish, schools and colleges, many Catholic ministries, hospitals, relief agencies, etc.), people can choose where their gifts should go.

The Catholic Church teaches that a Christian Steward is one who receives God’s gifts gratefully, nurtures them responsibly and shares them sacrificially and justly with all, and returns them lovingly with increase to the Lord.

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Catholic Foundation of Oklahoma awards more than $107,000 in scholarships for 2013-2014

This fall, 70 Catholic students from the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City will collectively apply more than $107,000 in scholarship dollars from the Catholic Foundation of Oklahoma to the cost of college or graduate school.

“The lesson of stewardship is one of faith, as God comes before all else,” the CFO website states. “This faith enables us to focus on serving others rather than attaching ourselves to personal gains and treasures. Ultimately, we need to return a portion of all that we have received in life back to Him. The Catholic Foundation serves as a resource to donors and helps to give them the opportunity to continue their stewardship through a variety of planned giving methods.”

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Pope discusses women in the church, divorce, his own spirituality

By Cindy Wooden
Catholic News Service

ABOARD THE PAPAL FLIGHT FROM BRAZIL (CNS) -- From his personal prayer life and spirituality to the role of women in the church and the pastoral care of the divorced, Pope Francis responded to several questions about church teaching and ministry July 28 when he met reporters on his flight from Rio de Janeiro to Rome.

On the possibility of the Catholic Church ordaining women priests, Pope Francis said, "the church has spoken and said, 'no,'" and the form in which Blessed John Paul II declared that was "a definitive formula." Blessed John Paul said that because Jesus chose only men as his disciples, the church was not able to ordain women.

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Saint Damien’s parishioners: Sense of ‘reverence’ draws us to the Extraordinary Form of the Mass

By J.E. Helm

Attending the 10:30 a.m. Mass at Saint Damien’s in Edmond is like going back in time to 1962.  This is the so-called Tridentine Mass, said entirely in Latin with the priest facing the altar.  The surprise is that the pews are not filled with aging baby boomers waxing nostalgic for the good old days; most of those in attendance are young married couples with large families of young children.

The priests who serve this church are members of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter (FSSP), founded in 1988 in Bavaria, now with a seminary in Nebraska.  They are organized under the auspices of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City. 

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Students at 12 Catholic Schools within the Archdiocese of OKC solve 6 Million Math Problems

Suntex International, creators of the First in Math Online Program, announced that students at 12 Catholic Schools within the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City received several top honors in the First in Math Online Program.  Together K-8th grade students within the 12 catholic schools solved over 6 million math problems in just 9 short months! The schools were part of 80 other schools in the state of Oklahoma who solved a combined total of 37 million math problems!  St. Elizabeth Ann Seton led the charge by placing first in the state.  Twenty One Thousand participating students in Oklahoma joined an estimated 1.5 million students nation-wide to solve a record 3 Billion math problems in 9 months! 

The First in Math Online Program is a dynamic, self-paced, web-based mathematics practice program for K-8 grade students.  The program covers the six foundational skills required for advanced mathematics, including basic facts, fractions, decimals, integers, exponents and order of operations.  It provides detailed assessment information for teachers and has been proven to help students master basic to advanced algebraic math skills through the use of competitive, game-style activities that provide immediate feedback.

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Students at 12 Catholic Schools within the Archdiocese of OKC solve 6 Million Math Problems

Suntex International, creators of the First in Math Online Program, announced that students at 12 Catholic Schools within the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City received several top honors in the First in Math Online Program.  Together K-8th grade students within the 12 catholic schools solved over 6 million math problems in just 9 short months! 

The schools were part of 80 other schools in the state of Oklahoma who solved a combined total of 37 million math problems!  St. Elizabeth Ann Seton led the charge by placing first in the state.  Twenty One Thousand participating students in Oklahoma joined an estimated 1.5 million students nation-wide to solve a record 3 Billion math problems in 9 months!  

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400,000 brave wind, rain for WYD opening Mass on Copacabana beach

By Lise Alves
Catholic News Service

RIO DE JANEIRO (CNS) -- The mosaic of hundreds of national flags waving in the cold wind on Copacabana beach was symbolic, as pilgrims from all backgrounds, driven by a single faith, participated in the opening Mass for World Youth Day.

"We come from different cultures, speak different languages, but we sing the same songs and have the same faith," said Nancy Issa of Ramallah, West Bank. Issa and 20 other Palestinians came to Brazil for the July 23-28 events.

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World Youth Day: Memories and predictions

By Brianna Osborne // Exclusively for SoonerCatholic.com

World Youth Day 2013 is one week away, and it brings up fond memories for many Oklahoma Catholics, while also raising speculation about Pope Francis’ role this year in Rio de Janeiro. Will he interact more directly with the young people? What will he do differently from Blessed John Paul II (soon to be canonized) and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI?

The Vatican website has released the program of events for Pope Francis’ apostolic journey to Rio de Janeiro, and it clearly reflects his love and care for all people. He will have lunch with seminarians, visit a local hospital, hear confession from some young people and visit some young prisoners, in addition to the usual World Youth Day events, such as the official Mass and the Way of the Cross.

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Father Stanley Rother Guild: What is it and why do we need one?

By Cara Koenig

Like other such guilds around the world, the Father Stanley Rother Guild formed to advance the cause for sainthood of an exceptionally holy person – in this case, Father Rother.

“The guild is a necessary component of the canonization process,” said Father M. Price Oswalt, the director of the Father Stanley Rother Guild. “It helps unite the people of God behind the candidate.  Some guilds begin well before the cause is ever opened.  Take, for example, Servant of God Father Emil Kapaun from Wichita. His guild was started after the Korean War ended. However, the Diocese of Wichita and the Archdiocese for Military Services did not officially open his cause until 2007.”

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