WCR This Week

Abortion industry a cash cow, says former abortionist

Carol Everett

May 26, 2014
DEBORAH GYAPONG
CANADIAN CATHOLIC NEWS

Carol Everett operated four abortion clinics in Texas from 1977 to 1983 until an encounter with Jesus Christ turned her into a pro-life advocate. "I sold abortions," Everett told the annual Rose Dinner May 8 following the National March for Life. She described her abortion clinics as a "cash cow" that earned her a commission for every abortion, plus a share of the clinic's fees. A doctor would perform an abortion in one room, and then go across the hall to perform another, often without scrubbing up, she said.

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Abortion holds major ramifications for women, says report

Andrea Mrozek

May 26, 2014
DEBORAH GYAPONG
CANADIAN CATHOLIC NEWS

OTTAWA – Women who have abortions face increased risk of divorce or separation, of marrying late or not at all, and of poor mental health, says a new report. Abortion has a wide social impact, affecting relationships, sexuality, mental health and demographics, said the report, Interconnected: How Abortion Impacts Mothers, Families and Our Societies, written by The Institute of Marriage and Family Canada (IMFC). "It is not helpful to overstate negative ramifications of abortion," wrote IMFC executive director Andrea Mrozek. "However, by far the bigger concern Canadians face today is the problem of pretending there are none."

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Plundering adds to crisis in war-torn Central African Republic

May 26, 2014
JONATHAN LUXMOORE
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Catholic bishops in conflict-torn Central African Republic warned that their country's wildlife and natural resources are being plundered by outside groups. The country needs more effective leadership from the transitional government to deal with the ecological crisis in the war-torn nation, the bishops said. "This crisis, with its insecurity and violence, are providing the instability which favours the anarchic and illegal exploitation of our resources," the permanent council of the country's bishops' conference said in a May 12 statement.

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Food system controlled by global corporate elite

May 26, 2014
KATE O'GORMAN
PRAIRIE MESSENGER

The world does not need to produce more food; it needs to solve the issue of who controls the food, says Dr. Nettie Wiebe. "There is enough food in the world to feed everybody," Wiebe, professor of Church and Society at St. Andrew's College at the University of Saskatchewan, told a workshop in Saskatoon on the environment and ecumenism. "The problem is who controls the food." The global trade in food is highly concentrated, with few corporate players, she said. While there may be an excess of food production in the world, its distribution and availability is highly controlled and accessibility is often reserved for the few.

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Church criminally neglects to discuss mercy, says Kasper

Cardinal Walter Kasper

May 26, 2014
BETH GRIFFIN
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Mercy, the "most central attribute of God," has been criminally neglected as a topic in the Church, says Cardinal Walter Kasper, a theologian and retired president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. Mercy without justice is "cheap grace," Kasper said in a recent talk at Jesuit-run Fordham University in New York. God's mercy is a mirror of his love to people coming from a dark 20th century with two world wars that killed millions of people, into a new century that began with the Sept. 11 attacks, Kasper said.

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Franciscan brother opts for priesthood

Br. Joachim Ostermann

May 26, 2014
LASHA MORNINGSTAR
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Once again, Brother Joachim Ostermann came to a life-changing decision at a retreat. It was during that silence, that protective barrier against life's distractions, that Ostermann decided, "Yes, I want to be ordained. From that point on, I always felt, 'Yes, I want to be a priest.'" It was at another retreat many years ago that Ostermann felt the first call from God, left the world of biotechnology and became a Franciscan. Now he is on the brink of ordination as a priest.

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He fought the Lord and the Lord won

Deacon Kris Schmidt

May 26, 2014
RAMON GONZALEZbr />WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

The call to priesthood came almost as a surprise to Kris Schmidt, who as a young man was carving a different niche for himself. He had a girlfriend, played hockey and dreamed of becoming a medical doctor when God came knocking. He fought the call, but God proved stronger. Now, after six years of seminary studies, Schmidt will be ordained a priest June 27 at St. Joseph's Basilica. Archbishop Richard Smith will preside at his ordination ceremony. Schmidt feels both excitement and apprehension at his upcoming ordination. "I'll be 28 years old shortly after my ordination and, at 28, I still feel a bit like a kid sometimes and I am being given this very adult responsibility."

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Sr. Mary Clare heard God's melody playing in her heart

Sr. Mary Clare Stack

May 26, 2014
CHRIS MILLER
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Born in Calgary and raised in Edmonton, Sister Mary Clare Stack grew up in a large Catholic family. Both in elementary school and in junior high, she was asked whether she had ever thought about religious life. She dismissed the idea completely. However, in Grade 12, despite dating a "good Catholic guy" at the time, she said, "There was a magnet in my heart that was pulling me towards religious life. I could not shut that out."

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Basilians at St. Joe's College drew local man to the priesthood

Fr. Warren Schmidt

May 26, 2014
CHRIS MILLER
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Warren Roger Schmidt, who grew up in Sherwood Park, has been ordained a Basilian priest. Schmidt was ordained May 10 at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish in Sherwood Park. "This was the parish I grew up in since I was 12 years old. I also belong to a religious order (the Basilians) and not to the diocese so I asked to be ordained in my home parish, the parish which my parents and family are still active in," said Schmidt. Early on, he decided he wanted to belong to a religious order, rather than a diocese. His great aunt is a Holy Cross sister, and at first he considered joining the Holy Cross order. Then he met some Basilians, and they treated him graciously.

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After move from N.S., Frasers said, 'Here we are, Lord'

Hyland Fraser

May 26, 2014
RAMON GONZALEZ
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

At an age when most people would rather retire and spend their days playing golf, Hyland Fraser is embarking on a new venture. The 67-year-old home builder is becoming a permanent deacon, one of three men Archbishop Richard Smith will ordain May 31. "I find it very humbling to be called to the diaconate," Fraser says. As a deacon, Hyland and his wife Harriet will spend their days serving the people of God in a variety of ministries at Holy Trinity Parish in Spruce Grove. They already do. Both serve as Eucharistic ministers, lectors and pastoral care ministers at the parish. Hyland also serves on the financial committee.

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