Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington



From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

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


Compiled by Father Tom Caswell, for the Inland Register

(From the November 21, 2013 edition of the Inland Register)

From the Inland Register – Volume LII, No. 24
Fifty Years Ago: October 13, 1963

Art is ‘Avant Garde’ at Fort Wright College

The accent on modern art at Fort Wright is making the Holy Names College a mecca for serious-minded art majors from such distant points as Hong Kong, Peru, Honolulu, Columbia and California.

Typical of the spirit motivating HNC art is the solo exhibit of sculpture by Sister Paula Mary of the art faculty, now on view at the campus Avant Garde Gallery where visitors may view her work from 2-5 p.m. daily, including weekends, through Oct. 31. Included in the exhibit are silk-screen wall hangings by Sister Paula Mary, etchings and oils by Sister Miriam Clare, chairman of the art department, and Miss Kitty Rydell, art department assistant.

(The Avant Garde Gallery, incidentally, was once the army post’s paint shop and the paint splatters adorning the concrete floor add to the atmosphere of art-at-work.)

Although experimentation in almost every art medium has been attempted by HNC’s faculty and students, the recent accent – perhaps because of Sister Paula Mary’s proficiency in this art form – has been on sculpture. Students now work in metal, marble, clay, wood, plaster-of-paris, cement and wire.

Sister Paula Mary’s commissions throughout the diocese – and beyond it – have included the nine-foot ceramic figure of St. Francis of Assisi on the façade of Spokane’s House of Charity; portable wire-on-maple stations of the cross at Fairchild Air Force Base chapel; mosaic coat-of-arms for Bishop Topel; stations at Bishop White Seminary; and ceramic plaques depicting St. Dymphana, patroness of the mentally ill, at Eastern State Hospital. Her eight-foot cement statue of St. Joseph and the Christ Child on the Fort Wright campus continues to inspire art students.

Sister’s delightful “patio guardian,” exhibited during last year’s invitational arts and crafts show at Cheney Cowles Museum, and the ceramic Madonna and Child highlighted during the 1963 Madonna Festival at Immaculate Heart Retreat House were stolen –or vandalized – during the summer. Only fragments of these lovely pieces have been found….

From the Inland Register – Volume LII, No. 25
Fifty Years Ago: October 20, 1963

Your Bishop and You: Sisters for Guatemala

by Bishop Bernard Topel

My last day in the United States before coming to Rome was spent in Craggmoore, N.Y., about 90 miles north of New York City. I was visiting the motherhouse of a new community of Sisters, the Daughters of Mary, Health of the Sick. This community was founded about 25 years ago by Father Edward Garesche. It has a twofold purpose: to teach Christian Doctrine and to heal the sick, especially in the missions. As you know, five of these Sisters will start working in our Guatemala mission in 1965. They started their first mission in 1953 in Okinawa. Theirs was the first community of Sisters to go to that island. In their motherhouse, I saw a postulant and a novice from Okinawa.

Primitive New York

The trip to their motherhouse was interesting. It took an astonishingly long time to get out of the city. Then we went into a territory that is much less inhabited than I thought likely in New York State. The motherhouse property is about 400 acres in size and located on a “mountain.” (A native of Montana would not call it that.) It is quite primitive there. Gardens are most difficult to raise because of the deer, raccoon, and groundhogs that abound. The property is almost completely wooded. The autumn colors were beautiful with many more and deeper reds than we have in Washington.

I was glad to become acquainted with this vibrant, young community. The members have the enthusiasm and spirit of a youthful group.

Thursday evening I left on a plane chartered to carry American bishops to Rome. I believe we had about 100 on board. The plane took off about 11 p.m. It arrived in Amsterdam 12 hours later by Holland time. We were only in the air six hours so that we didn’t get much sleep; in fact, almost none. The rest of the time was “lost” in time change. We spent two hours in Holland, then came on to Rome. This trip also took about two hours. The Holy Father had given us the privilege of saying evening Masses upon our arrival in Rome. We were happy to be in Rome but exhausted.

Less ceremony

Sunday morning the Council opened with great ceremonies at St. Peter’s. Yet the ceremonies were not so elaborate as last year because this time it was a reopening, not an opening.

All of the bishops were in their places when the Holy Father came into St. Peter’s. He was on foot. Suddenly as I saw him, there came the strong realization, “Here is Christ.”

This thought was not so out of order as it might at first seem. If we are to see Christ in our fellow man (and we are) how much more should we look on the Holy Father, the Vicar of Christ, as Christ! I remembered too that others have referred to the pope in the same manner. On seeing Pope Paul, one receives the strong impression of a short, slight, and austere man.

More speed

Now it is Tuesday. We have had two more sessions of the Council. Unlike the first days last year, we started with dispatch and energy. Ways have been set up to shorten our labors. Already we have finished the discussion on a new scheme on the Church and have voted it as acceptable for discussion and correction. Last year, you will remember, several schemas were rejected and sent back to the Commissions for rewriting. Yet I believe this scheme on the Church will take a long time for us to finish.

It will deal in a special way with the role of the bishop in the Church; the First Vatican Council dealt with the role of the pope and it was recessed before the Council could discuss the role of the bishop. As you may recall, the First Vatican Council was recessed because of war in Europe.

From the Inland Register – Volume 46, No. 6
Twenty-five years ago: September 15, 1988

St. Augustine Parish breaks ground on new project

Bishop Lawrence H. Welsh was among those who took shovel in hand for groundbreaking ceremonies earlier this month at St. Augustine Parish. The ceremonies marked the beginning of a $750,000 project that will convert the former St. Augustine convent into a multiple-use facility for the parish.

The convent had once housed the Sisters who taught at the adjoining school, but in recent years has been used for music instruction, Sunday school programs, and parish meetings.

Joining Bishop Welsh were Father Robert Pearson, present pastor of the parish, and Father Joseph Pash, who retired last summer as planning for the project neared completion.

According to Jim Elmer, president of BoPear Construction, Inc., plans call for completion of the project by May 1989.

The design was created by ALSC Architects, P.S. The design will expand the existing structure by 3,700 square feet.

According to Building Committee Chairman Jerry Schmidlkofer, the remodeling will add “a large multipurpose room for parish gatherings that will also be used as a gymnasium by Cataldo Catholic School. We will be adding administrative office space, classrooms, and a kitchen as well,” he said.

“Because the building is wedged into the side of a hill,” Schimdlkofer said, “accessibility from the upper level called for special design considerations, resulting in an elevator on the building’s east side.”

(Father Caswell is archivist for the Inland Register, and a frequent contributor to this publication.)


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