Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington

From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Deacon Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302

Regional Report

the Inland Register

(From the Nov. 13, 2008 edition of the Inland Register)

Archdiocese of Portland

PORTLAND – Each day for decades, Doc Hite walked, stood, sat, and eventually slumped outside a Portland abortion clinic, urging adoption over abortion. His mission was persistent testimony to what he considered a slaughter of innocents. He kept up his protest until he was 100 years old. He died last month at the age of 102

“I know we are not to declare anyone a saint before the church does, but there are many who thought of him as a living saint,” said Thomas Di Novo, a Beaverton, Ore., member of a Catholic men’s association that included Hite as its spiritual inspiration.

The former cowboy and berry farmer kept an often lonely vigil. He was not always quiet; he was arrested seven times, and spent a month in jail for his activity, where he passed the time praying and reading.

He always spoke respectfully, if pleadingly, to the women he encountered, urging them to call an 800-number for information about adoption. He was rarely, if ever, harsh, and leaned toward compassion. In a 1999 interview, he said his motivation was “love of God and children.”

He never married. At age 100, he admitted it might have been nice to have children. Some of the women who did not abort because of his presence at a clinic would bring their babies to see him. And so, in a larger sense, he did have children, after all.

BEAVERTON – And speaking of centenarians, Father John Reedy celebrated his 100th birthday last month.

He first served as an assistant at St. Vincent de Paul Parish, Salem, where he returned later to minister as pastor for nearly 30 years. He formed long friendships in that time, including a relationship with the Moore family, who lived next door to the church.

One of the children, Marcia Moore Hull, recalled his ready wit and ability to laugh at himself, especially as his short-term memory dimmed somewhat.

Years after Hull’s mother died, she visited Father Reedy, who asked about her mother’s health. Hull haltingly explained that her mother was, well, still dead.

There was a brief pause, and then the priest said, “No wonder I haven’t heard from her.”

He never complains, Hull said. “He’s such a beautiful man – holy, holy,” said Hull. “Every time I go visit, he teaches me something.”

PORTLAND – In a recent column titled “Priestly formation in Oregon,” Portland’s Archbishop John Vlazny gave some background on the preparation given to men discerning a call to priesthood.

“Human formation has received considerable attention in recent times because of some of the problems that have occurred in the lives of clergy. A priest is a public person, called upon to represent the church in worship and in service. He must be a man of integrity and self possession in order to make a gift of himself for the mission of the church. The church looks for men with sound prudential judgment, a sense of responsibility and personal initiative, a capacity for leadership, an ability to establish and maintain wholesome friendships, and an ability to work in a collaborative, professional manner with God’s people….

“Especially important today for public ministry is a flexibility of spirit which helps a priest relate to people across a number of cultures as well as theological and ecclesial outlooks. The good priest must put on both the mind and the heart of Christ.”

— Catholic Sentinel (Archdiocese of Portland)

Archdiocese of Seattle

SEATTLE – Pete O’Brien, manager of the food bank for St. Vincent de Paul, was one of six individuals honored recently by Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels at the 17th annual Mayor’s End Hunger Awards Ceremony last month.

“We have seen a 50 percent increase in the numbers of people, and Pete has found a way to serve them all,” said Richard Bray, St. Vincent’s Director of Donor and Community Relations. “He has been a leader in pulling together food banks to address larger concerns and sharing food supplies…. He is a Catholic putting his faith into action in some tremendous ways for the poor.”

— The Catholic Northwest Progress (Archdiocese of Seattle)

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