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Voices Online Edition
Vol. XXIV, No. 3
Michaelmas 2009

Women for Faith & Family
Celebrating 25 years of service to the Church

Bishop Hermann Leads WFF in "Gospel of Life" Day

The Gospel of Life was the theme of a day of recollection sponsored by Women for Faith & Family on July 18, 2009, as part of its twenty-fifth anniversary observance. More than 80 attended the event held at the Cardinal Rigali Center in St. Louis.

Bishop Robert Hermann, auxiliary bishop of St. Louis, led the WFF day of recollection for the second year.

Bishop Hermann gave three in-depth reflections on Pope John Paul II’s key encyclical, Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life). This 1995 encyclical is a profound teaching on the fundamental Christian truth that all human life is linked to God and thus is sacred from its very beginning.

The bishop guided the group through the encyclical’s four chapters. He stressed the responsibility of every person to build a “culture of life”, and the obligation of all Christians to communicate the truth about human life to others by our actions as well as by words — and to be willing to suffer for this truth.

The day’s events included a Votive Mass of the Blessed Virgin Mary, celebrated by Bishop Hermann, and choral recitation of morning and evening prayer (Lauds and Vespers) held in the beautiful gothic-style chapel of St. Vincent de Paul in the Cardinal Rigali Center.

Father Samuel Weber, OSB, director of the St. Louis archdiocesan Institute for Sacred Music, composed chants for the English texts for the Divine Office, and led the group in singing. The chapel is ideally suited for choral recitation of the Divine Office, as it was originally built for Kenrick Seminary with antiphonal seating, or choir stalls, common to religious or monastic churches and like the chancel area of gothic cathedrals.

Participants recited the Rosary together, and began the Novena for the Protection of the Unborn. In addition to Bishop Hermann and Father Weber, five priests heard confessions in the afternoon: Monsignor Timothy Cronin, Monsignor David Ratermann, Monsignor Thomas Woracek, Father Harry Voelker and Father Donald Henke.

Bishop Hermann’s talks were recorded, and are available as a set of 3 CDs. The set may be purchased ($15 + $4.00 shipping) from St. Joseph Radio, 3895 Cambridge Crossing Drive, St. Charles, MO 63304, or phone 636-244-0089.

A study guide for Evangelium Vitae, prepared as an aid to individuals or groups in understanding this important papal encyclical, is available from Women for Faith & Family (online:

Related News Release: 2008

Related News Release: 2009

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