Friday, March 17, 2017

(131) Our Ad in the 2017 Men's Day Program Pamphlet

AMDG

RISE UP OH MEN OF GOD; YOU CAN CHANGE THE WORLD!!!

You can do a little today, a little tomorrow, a little the next day
And the accumulation of many little things done over a lifetime
Can add to greatness and sanctity too with God’s help.
 
Be a Christ bearer wherever you are; seek His will for your life; trust Him; He will be with you.
 
May the world be just a little bit better because of you.

“It’s better to light one candle than to curse the darkness” 
                   (christophers.org).

“Don’t just keep the faith; SPREAD IT”.  People in your own extended family
                     have left the faith..

RISE UP OH MEN OF GOD.  ARMED WITH THE POWER OF PRAYER, BE EFFECTIVE SPIRITUAL LEADERS FOR GOOD IN THE HOME as well as in the parish, on the job, and in the community.
 
Try our Men’s Conference Blog, “Becoming True Men of God” at diosteubmen.blogspot.com.  It has summaries of past Men’s Day of Renewal; resources for promoting it in your parish and K of C Council; plus articles on Men’s spirituality by past speakers and others.  The most recent ones are Blog #105 - a summary of the Matthew Leonard’s 2016 Conference talk; #107 - a review of the book by Fr. Larry Richards, “BE A MAN”; #108 - an article by Fr. Thomas Loya on Same Sex Marriage; #109 - a review of Danny Abramowicz’s latest book; and #110 - Parenting Tips by Dr. Ray Guarendi.  They have links to other articles by our speakers in the past.  The most important of all is Blog #106 – “INTO THE BREACH: An Apostolic Exhortation to Catholic Men” by Thomas Olmsted, Bishop of Phoenix.  Don’t miss it *.

Also try a related blog with greater variety, “A Little Bit for God and His People” at paulrsebastianphd.blogspot.com.  See Blog #9 on the Christophers; #151 - “You’re IN the Super Bowl……the Real One…….A Football Analogy of Life”; #171 - “The Awesomeness of the Mass and the Eucharist”; #175 - “The Immaculate Heart and the Sacred Heart: United as One”; #179 - “Our Country Desperately Needs Prayer”; #181 - “VIVA CRISTO REY: Thousands Died for the Freedom to Proclaim It”; and #183 - “God’s Most Magnificent Creation From the Perspective of an Engineer”.  The most important one is Blog #161 - “The Principal Educators of the Faith…….Parents!” because we’re losing our youth.  Check out the titles on both blogs *.

Check out these great websites:  newemangelization.com and crossingthegoal.com are for men’s spirituality; awestruck.tv is an excellent Catholic social network site resembling Facebook, but in addition has common interest groups of people.

* To find any blog title or number, click the little triangles for each year and     month in the right column.
************************************************************************
St. Joseph, patron of this Men’s Conference and model of a true man of God, pray for us.
************************************************************************


Thursday, March 16, 2017

(130) Invitation to College Students to the Men's Conference

AMDG

*********************************************************************************
St. Joseph, model of a true man of God, pray for us and for the success of the Men's Conference.


Wheeling Jesuit University Campus Ministry (Up to Date 2016)
“Campus Ministry” <camp-min@wju.edu>,
“Jamey Brogan -  Director of Campus Ministry” <jbrogan@wju.edu>,
“Fr. Ignatius Sasmita SJ – Campus Minister” <ihssj@wju.edu>,
“D. Puddy Agans – Campus Minister” <dagans@wju.edu>,
“Margaret Erickson – Pastoral Associate” <merickson@wju.edu>,
“Elaine Teachout – Office Manager” <eteachout@wju.edu>,
“Fr. Jim Obrien” <jobrien@wju.edu>,
“Robert Troeger – Director Music Ministry” <rtroeger@wju.edu>,
“? Fr. Harry Geib” <hgeib@wju.edu>,

March 15, 2017

Dear Wheeling Jesuit University Campus Ministers:

            If the Men are in good spiritual shape, the family is renewed.  If the family is renewed, the parish is renewed and so is the diocese.  The men must be spiritual leaders in their families.  The men must step up and be the pillars of the parish.......not only the women.  The men must put Christ into the marketplace and in their jobs.  That's what we're trying to accomplish with the Steubenville Diocesan Men's Day of Renewal.  See the attached brochure, additional information, and registration form.          

            I am a member of the Steering Committee for organizing the Steubenville Diocesan Men's Day of Renewal.  Our parish, Sacred Heart Church in Point Pleasant WV, and Sacred Heart Church in Pomeroy, OH have been sister parishes for many years, one inviting the other to a parish function, going to daily Mass at the other parish when the home pastor is away, and especially with the priests helping each other out with Penance services, and occasionally a weekend Mass.  Furthermore, I taught Business at Wheeling Jesuit University in 1988-89.  Thus I have a special love for Wheeling Jesuit university.

            In that same spirit we thought that it would be great if a delegation of students, staff, and professors from Wheeling Jesuit University could attend our Diocesan Men’s Day of Renewal on March 18 at St. Stephen’s Church in Caldwell (9 am to 3:30 pm) off of Exit 25 on I-77 about 1½ hrs. away.  Students from Wheeling Jesuit University would be great witnesses and it would be a great experience for them.  If we can attract a good number of men, we will be able to provide more nationally known speakers in future years. 

            It is essential that the men take the spiritual lead in the family and in the parish.  Too often the women are the pillars of the parish.  According to Fr. Larry Richards, our 2013 speaker, the probability that the children will remain faithful to the Church in later life is about 40% if the mother takes the spiritual lead.  However, if the father does his job as spiritual leader, that probability of later faithfulness doubles to about 80%!!!!  According to Danny Abramowicz, the children love Mom, but tend to follow Dad. The great majority of your male students are the future fathers and husbands in the Church.
            To complement the Mass presided by Bishop Monforton and Penance Service the featured speaker is Capt. Guy Gruters (USAF).  After graduation from the Air Force Academy with a B.S. in Engineering Science, Capt. Gruters flew more than 400 combat missions in Vietnam and received over 30 combat medals and awards.  He was shot down twice and captured the second time in 1967.  After leaving the Air Force, he captained DC-9s and Boeing 727s for Eastern Airlines until retiring in 1991.  Later Capt. Gruters was an account rep. for IBM and President of PC Software Systems.
            In his morning talk Guy Gruters will reveal how his faith and trust in God carried him through the ordeal as a Prisoner of War in the notorious “Hanoi Hilton” and other camps for five years.  Since bitterness is self-destructing, he will share in the afternoon talk how he learned to show mercy and forgive his brutal captors who tortured him and deal with people in a business environment.  The participants will discover how they can apply the lessons learned by Capt. Gruters to their daily lives.  He is a 4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus.  
            Drawing from his diverse experience and being a father of seven children, he will also touch on “Leadership and Teamwork in the Family, Church, and the Community”.  An excellent and dynamic speaker, Mr. Gruters gives talks all over the country and is the author of the book, “Locked Up With God”.
        Another alternative is to invite Capt. Guy Gruters to speak on campus.  If interested, I could easily put you in contact with him.
            This background puts Capt. Gruters in a position to speak on the theme of this year’s Diocese of Steubenville Men’s Conference, “Mercy and Forgiveness, Faith and Trust……..Means of Developing Strength  and Holiness in Difficult Times” and apply it to our daily lives.  That is through the power of faith rise up to be the spiritual leaders of their families, to do their part in renewing their parishes, be servant leaders in the community, and to make a difference for Christ by applying the social teachings of the Church to their professions.

The goal of the Men's Day of Renewal is to focus on the spiritual development of the men of our diocese. Having spiritually strong men of faith and character translates into more solid families, more dynamic parishes, and better communities. This is crucial to the Church, now and in the future. It is also critical for nurturing vocations.  It involves sacrificing most of a Saturday with some travel, but Lent is all about sacrifice and the quest for holiness.  That gives a pilgrimage flavor.  During the middle ages, pilgrims would travel for days by foot or horseback.

            The men will see how the participants are moved by the beauty and power of the faith.   The experience of seeing so many men enthusiastically participating and lifting up their voices in song is uplifting.  There will be a Holy Hour of Eucharistic Adoration and optional Lenten Confession.  In the past the men have returned spiritually refreshed, reinvigorated, and enthusiastic.   Registration will be taken at the door.

            There’s more information on the diocesan website, www.diosteub.org and the Conference Blog, “Becoming a True Man of God” at diosteubmen.blogspot.com which is also devoted to articles to keep men in spiritual shape after the Conference.  For a greater variety, go to “A Little Bit for God and His People” at paulrsebastianphd.blogspot.com.  One may also contact paulrsebastian@yahoo.com or call 740-245-9404.

            It should be a great day of enjoyable fellowship and spiritual reinvigoration. But most of all, the organizers expect that through grace there will be a few more good spiritually strong men for the kingdom of God in the battle against secularism and other evils and problems that our troubled society must confront.......men --not spiritual weaklings and wimps-- who will put Christ into their professions.  Finally, the men will become more knowledgeable, firmer in their faith, and better prepared for a more joyful Easter, not to mention a greater closeness to God and eternity which life on earth is all about. 
           
            Often the enthusiasm generated at a men's conference is contagious and there could be a spillover onto campus since the students see fellow participants moved by the beauty and power of the faith.  Non-Catholics are also welcome.  This is all a part of the New Evangelization in this Year of Faith......to fire up the apathetic Catholic who doesn't do much beyond attending Sunday Mass, the minimalist; to touch the drifting Catholic and the fallen away through the publicity and inviting them to attend.  Your students and their youth could stand out and be most effective witnesses for the faith and it would be a great experience for them. 

            You could appoint a student committee to mobilize students and professors with one on one selling, organize a van pool, and register the men.  Filling out the registration form in the easily duplicated brochure in advance and giving it with payment to a representative would speed things up at the door.  If sufficient time, please send them to Roger Huck; %Men’s Day of Renewal, P.O. Box 54; Beverly, OH 45715.  That would help our planning. 

            A layman could briefly talk about the conference at the end of Mass.  This would be a great supplement to any promotion that you care to make in the bulletin, from the pulpit, etc.  I know that there are almost two weeks and only one week-end left before the Conference, which is not much time.  I'm sorry about not being earlier, but it is still very doable. 

            Please don't hesitate to call me at 740-245-9404 or e-mail me at paulrsebastian@yahoo.com if I can be of help.    Hopefully, students and professors will return on fire which would make your university parish more dynamic.  Thank you so much and God bless.

SUMMARY OF WHAT THE MEN'S CONFERENCE CAN DO FOR YOU.....BENEFITS

·         Get into good spiritual shape and avoid being a spiritual weakling, i.e., a spiritual wimp.
·         Have a great day of enjoyable fellowship and spiritual invigoration in the parish van and at the conference, resulting in deeper friendships and parish cohesion.
·         Develop ourselves as men of character and spiritual strength as we obtain the graces to conquer ourselves and cope with the problems that our troubled society and economy brings to us.
·         Be a more effective spiritual leader of your family as a better husband and father.
·         Prepare our hearts for the great feast of Easter and for eternity as we become closer to God..
·         Become knowledgeable about the faith and grow in Christian maturity.  We know so little about Church teaching.
·         Become a more effective soldier of Christ as you do your part in establishing the kingdom, winning the spiritual-culture war against secularism, and put Christ into your profession.
*********************************************************************************
St. Joseph, model of a true man of God, pray for us and for the success of the Men's Conference.


AS A SHORT ANNOUNCEMENT

Diocesan Men's Day of Renewal Saturday, March 18 from 9 am – 3:30 pm at St. Stephen’s Church in Caldwell off of Exit 25 of I-77.  The theme is “Mercy and Forgiveness, Faith and Trust……..Means of Developing Strength and Holiness in Difficult Times.  The main speaker is Capt. Guy Gruters.  Dynamic and captivating, this nationally known author and speaker will show how his faith carried him through over five years as a POW at the Hanoi Hilton in Vietnam and how he learned to show mercy by forgiving his captors who tortured him.  The home page of diosteub.org 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

(129) Invitation to Veterans to the Steubenville Diocesan Men's Day of Renewal

AMDG


March 12, 2017

Dear Fellow Veteran:

            I’m on the Steering Committee for the Steubenville Diocesan Men’s Day of Renewal, which will be held on Saturday March 18 from 9 am to 3:30 pm at St. Stephen’s Church in Caldwell off of Exit 25 of I-77The men are challenged to become true men of God........dynamic Catholic leaders who will change the world, beginning with their families, their parishes, their communities, and the marketplace through their jobs.

            Since you, especially if a Vietnam veteran, can identify with our main speaker, Capt. Guy Gruters (USAF), you might be interested in attending.  He complements the Holy Hour at 9 am, Penance Service, and closing Mass presided by Bishop Monforton at 2:30 pm.  After graduation from the Air Force Academy with a B.S. in Engineering Science, Capt. Gruters flew more than 400 combat missions in Vietnam and received over 30 combat medals and awards.  He was shot down twice and captured the second time in 1967.  After leaving the Air Force, he captained DC-9s and Boeing 727s for Eastern Airlines until retiring in 1991.  Later Capt. Gruters was an account rep. for IBM and President of PC Software Systems.

            In his morning talk Guy Gruters will reveal how his faith and trust in God carried him through the ordeal as a Prisoner of War in the notorious “Hanoi Hilton” and other camps in Vietnam for over five years.  Since bitterness is self-destructing, he will share in the afternoon talk how he learned to show mercy and forgive his brutal captors who tortured him.  The participants will discover how they can apply the lessons learned by Capt. Gruters to their daily lives.  He is a 4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus. 
            Drawing from his diverse experience and being a father of seven children, he will also touch on “Leadership and Teamwork in the Family, Church, and the Community”.  An excellent and dynamic speaker, Mr. Gruters gives talks all over the country and is the author of the book, “Locked Up With God”.
            This background puts Capt. Gruters in a position to speak on the theme of this year’s Diocese of Steubenville Men’s Conference, “Mercy and Forgiveness, Faith and Trust……..Means of Developing Strength  and Holiness in Difficult Times” and apply it to our daily lives.  That is through the power of faith rise up to be the spiritual leaders of their families, to do their part in renewing their parishes, be servant leaders in the community, and to make a difference for Christ by applying the social teachings of the Church to their professions.
Since Capt. Guy Gruters exhibits the spirit of sacrifice that veterans have made for our country, the Conference will briefly honor all veterans present.  The MC will thank the veterans and ask them to stand.   Tentatively, a prayer will be offered for those on active duty, especially those in harm’s way.
If you would prefer to have Capt. Guy Gruters speak to your church, library, community group, local college, or veterans organization, I would be happy to put you in contact with him.  Since he lives near Dayton, travel expenses would be low.  He would adapt his talks to the audience.  
The goal of the Men's Day of Renewal is to focus on the spiritual development of the men of the diocese. Having spiritually strong men of faith and character translates into more solid families, more dynamic parishes, and better communities. This is crucial to the Church, now and in the future. It is also critical for nurturing vocations.  It involves sacrificing most of a Saturday with some travel, but Lent is all about sacrifice and the quest for holiness.  That gives a pilgrimage flavor.  During the middle ages, pilgrims would travel for days by foot or horseback.
The men will see how the participants are moved by the beauty and power of the faith.   The experience of seeing so many men enthusiastically participating and lifting up their voices in song is uplifting.  There will be a Holy Hour of Eucharistic Adoration and optional Lenten Confession.  The Conference is open to teens so this can also be a father and son event, a shared experience.   Non-Catholics are also welcome.  In the past the men have returned spiritually refreshed, reinvigorated, and enthusiastic.   Although registration will be taken at the door, the men are asked, asked to register in advance if time allows through the attached brochure or the registration forms also attached along with additional information.

            There’s more information on the home page of the diocesan website, www.diosteub.org and the Conference Blog, “Becoming a True Man of God” at diosteubmen.blogspot.com which is also devoted to articles to keep men in spiritual shape after the Conference.  For a greater variety, go to “A Little Bit for God and His People” at paulrsebastianphd.blogspot.com.  One may also contact paulrsebastian@yahoo.com or call 740-245-9404.

            It should be a great day of enjoyable fellowship and spiritual reinvigoration. But most of all, the organizers expect that through grace there will be a few more good spiritually strong men for the kingdom of God in the battle against secularism and other evils and problems that our troubled society must confront.......men --not spiritual weaklings and wimps-- who will put Christ into their professions.  Finally, the men will become more knowledgeable, firmer in their faith, and better prepared for a more joyful Easter, not to mention a greater closeness to God and eternity which life on earth is all about.  The Men's Day of Renewal is growing into an annual event in the Diocese of Steubenville, thus fulfilling a great need.
           *********************************************************************************
St. Joseph, model of a true man of God, pray for us and for the success of the Men's Conference.
*********************************************************************************

APPENDIX

Links to Articles of Interest to Veterans

        Did you know that only five military chaplains received the Congressional Medal of Honor, the highest decoration for heroism and all five of them are Catholic?

·                            Blog #29 “Veterans, Salute The Flag Out of Uniform” 

  • Blog #30 “Veterans Still Suffering for God and Country”

  • Blog #31 Fr. Vincent Capodanno: “A Medal of Honor Marine Chaplain of the Vietnam War & a Maryknoll Father”

  • Blog #127 “Heroic Chaplains Who Have Been Awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor”

  • Blog #160 - Cold War:  “Gallipolis, Ohio Resident Part of the History of the Berlin Wall: An Adventure in Cold War Intrigue”

  • Blog #180 - Korean War: “Fr. Emil Kapaun, the Most Decorated Chaplain in Military History”
          http://paulrsebastianphd.blogspot.com/2016/11/180-fr-emil-kapaun-most-decorated.html





Tuesday, March 14, 2017

(128) Invitation to Parishes in West Virginia Across the Ohio River

AMDG

Capt. Guy Gruters
March 7, 2017                                

Dear Father:

          If the mother takes the spiritual lead in the family, the probability that the children will remain faithful to the Church as adults is about 40%.  If the father takes the spiritual lead, that probability doubles to 80%.  This is crucial because we are losing our youth.  As Danny Abramowicz of “Crossing the Goal” on EWTN likes to point out, “The children love Mom, but tend to follow Dad.”  Thus the participants in the Diocesan Men’s Day of Renewal on Saturday March 18 at St. Stephen’s Church in Caldwell (9 am to 3:30 pm) off of Exit 25 on I-77 are challenged to become true men of God........dynamic Catholic leaders who will change the world, beginning with their families, their parishes, their communities, and the marketplace through their jobs.  If the Lord uses this Conference to set the men on fire, we renew the parish and ultimately the diocese.

          I am a member of St. Louis Church in Gallipolis in southeastern Ohio across the river from you and am a member of the Steering Committee for organizing the Steubenville Diocesan Men's Day of Renewal.  Our parish, Sacred Heart Church in Point Pleasant WV, and Sacred Heart Church in Pomeroy, OH have been sister parishes for many years.  They invite each other to parish functions and some go to daily Mass at the other parish when the home pastor is away.  The pastors beautifully work together with Penance services and substitute occasionally at a weekend Mass. 

          In that same spirit we thought that it would be great if a group of men from your parish would attend.  Perhaps this joint effort will stimulate more cooperation and pooling of resources among the parishes of the two dioceses on opposite sides of the river.  If we can attract a good number of men from both states, we will be able to provide more nationally known speakers in future years.  Of course, we would not want to interfere with any event of the Wheeling-Charleston Diocese, but I understand that they have decentralized regional retreats which our men could also attend.  Thus the two are compatible with each other, especially if one conference or the other is more convenient for some of the men.

          To complement the Mass presided by Bishop Monforton and Penance Service the featured speaker is Capt. Guy Gruters (USAF).  After graduation from the Air Force Academy with a B.S. in Engineering Science, Capt. Gruters flew more than 400 combat missions in Vietnam and received over 30 combat medals and awards.  He was shot down twice and captured the second time in 1967.  After leaving the Air Force, he captained DC-9s and Boeing 727s for Eastern Airlines until retiring in 1991.  Later Capt. Gruters was an account rep. for IBM and President of PC Software Systems.
 
In his morning talk Guy Gruters will reveal how his faith and trust in God carried him through the ordeal as a Prisoner of War in the notorious “Hanoi Hilton” and other camps for five years.  Since bitterness is self-destructing, he will share in the afternoon talk how he learned to show mercy and forgive his brutal captors who tortured him.  The participants will discover how they can apply mercy, forgiveness, faith, and trust to their daily lives as sources of strength in difficult times and a means to grow in holiness.  Capt. Gruters is a 4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus. 

Drawing from his diverse experience and being a father of seven children, he will also touch on “Leadership and Teamwork in the Family, Church, and the Community”.  An excellent and dynamic speaker, Mr. Gruters gives talks all over the country and is the author of the book, “Locked Up With God”.

          This background puts Capt. Gruters in a position to speak on the theme of this year’s Diocese of Steubenville Men’s Conference, “Mercy and Forgiveness, Faith and Trust……..Means of Developing Strength  and Holiness in Difficult Times”.  That is through the power of faith rise up to be the spiritual leaders of their families, to do their part in renewing their parishes, be servant leaders in the community, and to make a difference for Christ by applying the social teachings of the Church to their professions.

          Attached is a 1) Brochure, 2) Additional Information, 3) Functions of the Parish Rep,  4) Example of a bulletin insert, 5) Summary of last year’s talk by Matthew Leonard on prayer.

          The backing of the pastor is crucial.  Bulletin blurbs and inserts are not enough.  A plug from the pulpit is helpful.  Being already so busy with many responsibilities, the pastor doesn’t have time to get too involved, but he could appoint a parish representative or a committee to mobilize the men with one on one selling, organize a van pool, and register the men.  Filling out the registration form in the easily duplicated brochure in advance with the $25 payment and giving it to a parish representative would speed things up at the door.  If sufficient time, you may send them to Roger Huck; %Men’s Day of Renewal, P.O. Box 54; Beverly, OH 45715.  That would help our planning.  A parish representative would facilitate follow up on the undecided and for organizing a car or van pool.  

The men may bring their teen age sons, godsons, relatives, and friends.  Thus the Conference can also be a father and son event, a shared experience.   Non-Catholics are also welcome.   

          The local Knights of Columbus council can be invaluable in mobilizing their members and the other men in the surrounding parishes.  The spiritual formation of their men is very much within their mission.  A layman could briefly talk about the conference at the end of Mass.  This would be a great supplement to any promotion that you care to make in the bulletin, from the pulpit, etc. 

I know that there is only one week-end left before the Conference, which is not much time.  But I’m hoping that you can send at least a few men.  I'm sorry about not being earlier, but it is still very doable.  I apologize and hope to do better next year.

Useful Resources for Promotion. The pastor and parish representative can utilize our Conference Blog at http://diosteubmen.blogspot.com, beginning with Blog #111) Overview & Poster;  112) Ad Form;  113) Press Release #1;  114) Possible Short Bulletin Announcements;  115) Promotion Ideas;  116) Crucial Importance of the Parish Rep;  117) Sign Up Sheet;  118) Sample Bulletin Insert;  119) Press Release #2; 122) Example of an After Mass Talk By a Layman;  123) Possible Pulpit Announcements; 124) Press Release #3; 125) Secular Press Release.  I’ll post #122 on this week.    
          After the Conference it will have articles to help the men in their quest to become true men of God and keep in spiritual shape.  You may also submit articles.  You may adapt and use the materials as you see fit.  For a greater variety, you can go to my personal blog: “A Little Bit for God and His People” at http://paulrsebastianphd.blogspot.com.  You can make copies of the attached brochure or adapt the attached model and put it into your church bulletin as an insert.  The brochure and additional information is also on the diocesan website at www.diosteub.org.  

The goal of the Men's Day of Renewal is to focus on the spiritual development of the men of our diocese. Having spiritually strong men of faith and character translates into more solid families, more dynamic parishes, and better communities. This is crucial to the Church, now and in the future. It is also critical for nurturing vocations.

          True, Caldwell, Ohio is a good distance for some parishes.  It involves sacrificing most of a Saturday with some travel, but Lent is all about sacrifice and the quest for holiness.  During the middle ages, pilgrims would travel for days by foot or horseback.  Organizing the men to go together in a van pool for a 2 – 4 hour trip would give it a pilgrimage flavor, especially if there's a rosary and discussion about the day's events along the way.  It's a great opportunity as well.  It can solidify the parish as the men get to know each other better through great fellowship, especially if the pastor accompanies them. 

          Another option is to stay at the Microtel behind the Sunoco of the I-77 exit and make a retreat out of it.  Less than two miles from the St. Stephen’s Church which has a parish program of Stations of the Cross (Mass at Immaculate Conception Church nearby) on Friday at 7 pm preceded and followed by Eucharistic Adoration.   

It should be a great day of enjoyable fellowship and spiritual invigoration.  The last five years the men returned refreshed spiritually, reinvigorated, and enthusiastic.  Expect the same this year.  The men sang with such enthusiasm that the walls reverberated.  But most of all, through grace we'll have a few more good spiritually strong men for the kingdom of God in the battle against secularism and other evils and problems that our troubled society must confront.......men --not spiritual weaklings and wimps-- who will put Christ into their professions.  Finally, the men will become more knowledgeable, firmer in their faith, and better prepared for a more joyful Easter, not to mention a greater closeness to God and eternity which life on earth is all about.

          Often the enthusiasm generated at a men's conference is contagious and there is a spillover into parish life since the men see fellow participants moved by the beauty and power of the faith.  Non-Catholics are also welcome.  This is all a part of the new evangelization......to fire up the apathetic Catholic who doesn't do much beyond attending Sunday Mass, the minimalist; to touch the drifting Catholic and the fallen away through the publicity and inviting them to attend.

          The experience of seeing so many men enthusiastically participating and lifting up their voices in song is uplifting.  There will be opportunities for Eucharistic Adoration & a Lenten Confession.

          Please don't hesitate to call me at 740-245-9404 or e-mail me at paulrsebastian@yahoo.com if I can be of help.  Hopefully, the men will return on fire which would make your parish more dynamic.  Thank you so much and God bless.

SUMMARY OF WHAT THE MEN'S CONFERENCE CAN DO FOR YOU.....BENEFITS
·         Get into good spiritual shape and avoid being a spiritual weakling, i.e., a spiritual wimp.
·         Have a great day of enjoyable fellowship and spiritual invigoration in the parish van and at the conference, resulting in deeper friendships and parish cohesion.
·         Develop ourselves as men of character and spiritual strength as we obtain the graces to conquer ourselves and cope with the problems that our troubled society and economy brings to us.
·         Be a more effective spiritual leader of your family as a better husband and father.
·         Prepare our hearts for the great feast of Easter and for eternity as we become closer to God..
·         Become knowledgeable about the faith and grow in Christian maturity.  We know so little about Church teaching.
·         Become a more effective soldier of Christ as you do your part in establishing the kingdom, winning the spiritual-culture war against secularism, and put Christ into your profession.
*********************************************************************************
St. Joseph, model of a true man of God, pray for us and for the success of the Men's Conference.


Monday, March 13, 2017

(127) Appeal to the Knights of Columbus Councils to Promote and Help

Capt. Guy Gruters


March 11, 2017

Worthy Grand Knight:

          If the Men of the diocese are in good spiritual shape, the family is renewed.  If the family is renewed, the parish is renewed and so is the diocese.  The men must be spiritual leaders in their families.  The men must step up and be the pillars of the parish.......not only the women.  The men must put Christ into the marketplace and in their jobs.  Set the men on fire and we renew, the parish, the diocese and ultimately the Country, thus transforming Society. 
That's what we're trying to accomplish with the Diocesan Men's Day of Renewal and it very much coincides with the mission of the Knights of Columbus.......the spiritual formation of our men and to strengthen families.  However, marketing is crucial to the success of the Men’s Conference and that's where the Knights of Columbus can follow their tradition in being there when help is badly needed. 
          In the spirit of service of the Knights of Columbus, a couple of other 4th Degree Knights and I are on the Steering Committee and we'd like to ask for your help in two big ways. 
          Number one and the most important.......as the Grand Knight, please help us to promote the Diocesan Men's Day of Renewal.  You and the leaders of your council would be invaluable in helping us to mobilize the men of your Council and the parish to attend the Men's Conference.  It will be on Saturday March 18 at St. Stephen’s Church in Caldwell (9 am to 3:30 pm) off of Exit 25 of I-77 a half hour north of Marietta.  One on one personal selling is ideal.  Word of mouth by those who have gone previously would be the best form of advertising.  The help of the district deputies in their contacts with their grand knights and councils would be indispensable. 
          To complement the Mass presided by Bishop Monforton and Penance Service the featured speaker is Capt. Guy Gruters (USAF).  After graduation from the Air Force Academy with a B.S. in Engineering Science, Capt. Gruters flew more than 400 combat missions in Vietnam and received over 30 combat medals and awards.  He was shot down twice and captured the second time in 1967.  After leaving the Air Force, he captained DC-9s and Boeing 727s for Eastern Airlines until retiring in 1991.  Later Capt. Gruters was an account rep. for IBM and President of PC Software Systems.
            In his morning talk Guy Gruters will reveal how his faith and trust in God carried him through the ordeal as a Prisoner of War in the notorious “Hanoi Hilton” and other camps for five years.  Since bitterness is self-destructing, he will share in the afternoon talk how he learned to show mercy and forgive his brutal captors who tortured him and deal with people in a business environment.  The participants will discover how they can apply the lessons learned by Capt. Gruters to their daily lives.  He is a 4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus.  
          Drawing from his diverse experience and being a father of seven children, he will also touch on “Leadership and Teamwork in the Family, Church, and the Community”.  An excellent and dynamic speaker, Mr. Gruters gives talks all over the country and is the author of the book, “Locked Up With God”.
          This background puts Capt. Gruters in a position to speak on the theme of this year’s Diocese of Steubenville Men’s Conference, “Mercy and Forgiveness, Faith and Trust……..Means of Developing Strength  and Holiness in Difficult Times” and apply it to our daily lives.  That is through the power of faith rise up to be the spiritual leaders of their families, to do their part in renewing their parishes, be servant leaders in the community, and to make a difference for Christ by applying the social teachings of the Church to their professions.

          Attached is a brochure, Additional Information, Functions of the Parish Rep or Knight, and Registration Form.  The men may bring their teen age sons, godsons, relatives, and friends.  Thus the Conference can also be a father and son event, a shared experience.   After all, the Kof C is all about family.      
     
          Caldwell is a good distance for some councils.  But that's what Lent is all about.  It's sacrifice.  Organizing the men to go together in a van pool or even a bus for a two or three hour trip would be great fellowship and give it a pilgrimage flavor, especially if there's a rosary and discussion about the day's events along the way.  It's a great opportunity as well.  It can solidify the parish and the Council as the men get to know each other better, especially if the pastor accompanies them.  We will need confessors. 

It's also an opportunity for your KofC Council because you'll have a captive audience for up to four hours each way and that's great for recruiting.  Another option is to stay at the Microtel behind the Sunoco Gas Station off of the I-77 exit and make a retreat out of it.  Less than two miles from the St. Stephen’s Church which has a parish program of Stations of the Cross (Mass at Immaculate Conception Church nearby) on Friday at 7 pm preceded and followed by Eucharistic Adoration.  Wives could come along and spend the day in Marietta, shopping and sightseeing.  Pittsburgh is two hours away.

Our Conference Blog, “Becoming a True Man of God” at http://diosteubmen.blogspot.com (just click on it) has greater detail and resources for promoting the Conference beginning with Blog #111.  It also has articles on men’s spiritually to help the men in their quest to become true men of God.  You may also be interested in my own blog, “A Little Bit for God and His People” at http://paulrsebastianphd.blogspot.com.  

          Also very important is a little financial help from your Council, whatever you can afford, in underwriting the Conference so that we can charge the men an affordable price.  My council has given $100 each year since 2010.  It costs over $5000 to put this on and we need a reserve for next year to bring in the best speakers. 

The men may register individually or the parish representative may collect the registration forms with payment and send them as a package to Roger Huck; %Men’s Day of Renewal, P.O. Box 54; Beverly, OH 45715 or give it.  Or send him an e-mail (“Roger Huck” <huck4816@roadrunner.com>), saying how many men are coming and then give the registration forms and total owed to the men at the door.  This would save time waiting at the door and facilitate planning.  Checks for the Registration cost of $25.00 per person are to be made payable to the Diocese of Steubenville with “Men's Day of Renewal” written on the memo line of the check.

Even if you are no longer the grand knight of your council, please forward this e-mail to the current grand knight and/or bring this letter to the attention of the membership at your next council meeting.   If your next meeting is after the Conference date, please do what you can with the promotion by word of mouth or forward this e-mail to all the members of your council and quickly mobilize the men by phone to go together in a car or van pool.  Such a collaboration with the local diocese could be an example for other councils all over the country.


          The Knights have been invaluable in the past and we need your help again.  Thank you so much for your past promotional and financial help and for anything you can do this year.  The paid ads of different KofC councils in our program booklet are a big help.  I apologize for not sending you this material sooner, but there’s still time to send at least a few men to the Conference.  For the men who are drifting spiritually or are not faithful to the Sunday Mass obligation, this is evangelization at its best.......something that every Catholic is called to do.  God bless.  

Sunday, March 12, 2017

(126) Press Release to Secular Newspapers

           
Capt. Guy Gruters Speaking to a Veterans Group
          I sent the following introduction and press release to secular newspapers within a 200 mile or 3 hour radius of Caldwell, OH, our Men's Conference site.  Thus I included secular newspapers in Gallipolis, Athens, Marietta, Parkersburg-WV, Zanesville, Cambridge, St. Clairsville, Wheeling, Steubenville, and as very long shots Columbus, Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh. 

The addresses were easy to obtain by googling the internet.  Essentially, I sent the press release by e-mail all at once to the entire list.  My philosophy was if only one or two of the 14 newspaper pick up the release and print at least part of it, the effort is worthwhile.  Even if the reader does not attend the Conference, at least s/he receives the message behind the Conference.  In 2011 and 2013 the Gallipolis Daily Tribune published the entire article.  The Steubenville Herald Star picked up the press release in 2016 and 2017.  There may have been others.

AMDG

“Beth Sergent – Editor Gallipolis Daily Tribune - Pomeroy Daily Sentinel - Point Pleasant Daily      Register” <bsergent@civitasmedia.com>, <GDTnews@civitasmedia.com>,

“Steubenville Herald Star Executive Editor” <rgallabrese@heraldstaronline.com>, “City Editor” <jpowers@heraldstaronline.com>,  “Janice Kiaski – Editor Community Page” <jkiaski@heraldstaronline.com>,

“Wheeling Intelligencer” <myer@news-register.net>,

“St. Clairsville Times Leader Managing Editor” <bkapral@timesleaderonline.com>, “Area Editor” <timesleader@timesleaderonline.com>, “Lifestyles Editor” <sdunder@timesleaderonline.com>, 
“Jennifer Compston-Strough - Managing Editor” <jcompston@timesleaderonline.com>,

“Cambridge Daily Jeffersonian Publisher – Andrew S. Dix” <asdix@dixcom.com>, “Editor” <rbooth@daily-jeff.com>, <newsroom@daily-jeff.com>,

“Zanesville Times Recorder - Managing Editor” <psjames@nncogannett.com>, “Local Desk Editor” 

“Marietta Times News Editor” <kyork@mariettatimes.com>, <news@mariettatimes.com>, <asmith@mariettatimes.com>,

<tshipley@nncogannett.com>, “Assistant Editor” <vgrace@nncogannett.com>,
“Columbus Dispatch” <storyideas@dispatch.com>,

“Cleveland Plain Dealer Metro Editor” <kturner@plaind.com>, “Deputy Managing Editor” <dkannber@plaind.com>,

“Cincinnati Enquirer Community Editors” <therron@communitypress.com>,
<jkey@communitypress.com>, <rmaloney@communitypress.com>,

“Athens Messenger” <jhiggins@athensmessenger.com>,

“Parkersburg News & Sentinel”  <editorial@newsandsentinel.com>,  “Executive Editor - Christina Myer” <cmyer@newsandsentinel.com>,  “Paul LaPann – Managing Editor” <plapann@newsandsentinel.com>,  “Jesse Mancini – City Editor”  <jmancini@newsandsentinel.com>,

“Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ?” <localnews@post-gazette.com>,
March 9, 2017
            As the person responsible for publicity on the Steering Committee for the Steubenville Diocesan Men’s Day of Renewal, I am submitting for your consideration the following article for your News, Events, or Religion sections.  The Men's Conference described in the article submission below is open to men of all faiths and it's good for the people of different denominations to know what other churches are doing.  For those who do not attend, the article also gives a taste of the speaker's message, which challenges the men to become better spiritual leaders in the home, the parish, the community, and on the job.  Too many men are relegating that responsibility to their wives.
            Feel free to edit and condense it as you see fit.  If space is lacking, please at least consider the short announcement at the end for your Events section or Church Calendar.  You may contact me at 740-245-9404.  Photos of the main speaker, Capt. Guy Gruters, are attached and also the Conference brochure.

Thank you for your consideration and God bless.

PRESS RELEASE

STEUBENVILLE DIOCESAN MEN’S DAY OF RENEWAL SATURDAY MARCH 18
            If the mother takes the spiritual lead in the family, the probability that the children will remain faithful to the Church as adults is about 40%.  If the father takes the spiritual lead, that probability doubles to 80%.  This is crucial because we are losing our youth.  As Danny Abramowicz of “Crossing the Goal” on EWTN likes to point out, “The children love Mom, but tend to follow Dad.”  Thus the participants in the Diocesan Men’s Day of Renewal will be held on Saturday March 18 from 9 am to 3:30 pm at St. Stephen’s Church in Caldwell off of Exit 25 of I-77The men are challenged to become true men of God........dynamic Catholic leaders who will change the world, beginning with their families, their parishes, their communities, and the marketplace through their jobs.
            To complement the Holy Hour at 9 am, Penance Service, and closing Mass presided by Bishop Monforton at about 2 pm, the featured speaker is Capt. Guy Gruters (USAF).  After graduation from the Air Force Academy with a B.S. in Engineering Science, Capt. Gruters flew more than 400 combat missions in Vietnam and received over 30 combat medals and awards.  He was shot down twice and captured the second time in 1967.  After leaving the Air Force, he captained DC-9s and Boeing 727s for Eastern Airlines until retiring in 1991.  Later Capt. Gruters was an account rep. for IBM and President of PC Software Systems.
            In his morning talk Guy Gruters will reveal how his faith and trust in God carried him through the ordeal as a Prisoner of War in the notorious “Hanoi Hilton” and other camps in Vietnam for over five years.  Since bitterness is self-destructing, he will share in the afternoon talk how he learned to show mercy and forgive his brutal captors who tortured him.  The participants will discover how they can apply the lessons learned by Capt. Gruters to their daily lives.  He is a 4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus. 
 
            Drawing from his diverse experience and being a father of seven children, he will also touch on “Leadership and Teamwork in the Family, Church, and the Community”.  An excellent and dynamic speaker, Mr. Gruters gives talks all over the country and is the author of the book, “Locked Up With God”.
            This background puts Capt. Gruters in a position to speak on the theme of this year’s Diocese of Steubenville Men’s Conference, “Mercy and Forgiveness, Faith and Trust……..Means of Developing Strength  and Holiness in Difficult Times” and apply it to our daily lives.  That is through the power of faith rise up to be the spiritual leaders of their families, to do their part in renewing their parishes, be servant leaders in the community, and to make a difference for Christ by applying the social teachings of the Church to their professions.
Since Capt. Guy Gruters exhibits the spirit of sacrifice that veterans have made for our country, the Conference will briefly honor all veterans present.  The MC will thank the veterans and ask them to stand.  Tentatively a prayer will be offered for those on active duty, especially those in harm’s way. 

The goal of the Men's Day of Renewal is to focus on the spiritual development of the men of the diocese. Having spiritually strong men of faith and character translates into more solid families, more dynamic parishes, and better communities. This is crucial to the Church, now and in the future. It is also critical for nurturing vocations.  It involves sacrificing most of a Saturday with some travel, but Lent is all about sacrifice and the quest for holiness.  That gives a pilgrimage flavor.  During the middle ages, pilgrims would travel for days by foot or horseback.

            The men will see how the participants are moved by the beauty and power of the faith.   The experience of seeing so many men enthusiastically participating and lifting up their voices in song is uplifting.  There will be a Holy Hour of Eucharistic Adoration and optional Lenten Confession.  The Conference is open to teens so this can also be a father and son event, a shared experience.   Non-Catholics are also welcome.  In the past the men have returned spiritually refreshed, reinvigorated, and enthusiastic.   Registration will be taken at the door.

            There’s more information on the home page of the diocesan website, www.diosteub.org and the Conference Blog, “Becoming a True Man of God” at diosteubmen.blogspot.com which is also devoted to articles to keep men in spiritual shape after the Conference.  For a greater variety, go to “A Little Bit for God and His People” at paulrsebastianphd.blogspot.com.  One may also contact paulrsebastian@yahoo.com or call 740-245-9404.

            It should be a great day of enjoyable fellowship and spiritual reinvigoration. But most of all, the organizers expect that through grace there will be a few more good spiritually strong men for the kingdom of God in the battle against secularism and other evils and problems that our troubled society must confront.......men --not spiritual weaklings and wimps-- who will put Christ into their professions.  Finally, the men will become more knowledgeable, firmer in their faith, and better prepared for a more joyful Easter, not to mention a greater closeness to God and eternity which life on earth is all about.  The Men's Day of Renewal is growing into an annual event in the Diocese of Steubenville, thus fulfilling a great need.
           
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St. Joseph, model of a true man of God, pray for us and for the success of the Men's Conference.
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AS A SHORT ANNOUNCEMENT IN THE EVENTS SECTION OR CHURCH CALENDAR

Diocesan Men's Day of Renewal Saturday, March 18 from 9 am – 3:30 pm at St. Stephen’s Church in Caldwell off of Exit 25 of I-77.  The theme is “Mercy and Forgiveness, Faith and Trust……..Means of Developing Strength and Holiness in Difficult Times.  The main speaker is Capt. Guy Gruters.  Dynamic and captivating, this nationally known author and speaker will show how his faith carried him through five years as a POW at the Hanoi Hilton in Vietnam and how he learned to show mercy by forgiving his captors who tortured him.  The home page of diosteub.org gives a link to the brochure, additional information, and the Conference Blog.