WEDNESDAY     March 1, 2000    vol. 11, no. 43    SECTION THREE

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SECTION THREE Contents: Go immediately to the article:
  • Pro-Marriage initiative leading in polls, but more prayers needed to make sure it passes
  • Southern California teens taking abstinence message to schools with pertinent play
  • African king visits Pope; Congo Archbishop still imprisoned; Bishops get together in central Africa
  • Mexico's chief cardinal speaks out against manipulation of language
  • Latest ShipLogs of visitors sailing on the DailyCATHOLIC

  • WORLDWIDE NEWS & VIEWS with a Catholic slant continued:

      Initiative on the Sanctity of Marriage gaining in the polls in California

         With the California Primary less than a week away, a new poll shows that Californians approve of the sanctity of marriage and would overwhelmingly pass Proposition 22 which adds a provision to the Family Code providing that only marriage between a man and a woman is valid and recognized in California. The poll was taken by the San Francisco Examiner and if their findings are correct it will curtail the gay agenda in the golden state where homosexual factions are clamoring that the initiative is a hate agenda. Rather it is an assurance against further deterioration of what God intended. If you're a Californian, your YES vote will preserve matrimony. continued inside.


        SAN FRANCISCO ( - A new poll published in the San Francisco Examiner newspaper on Monday showed California voters support a ban on same-sex marriage by a large margin.

        The poll by Research 2000 in Rockville, Maryland, said 55 percent of likely voters support Proposition 22, 38 percent oppose, and 7 percent are undecided. The results are consistent with every poll published since October. Voters will decide on the ban next week as they vote in the presidential primaries.

        While same-sex marriage is not legal in California or any other state, Proposition 22 would define marriage as "between a man and a woman only," and would prohibit the state from legally recognizing same-sex marriages performed in other states if they become legal there.

        The measure is favored in all demographic groups and all parts of the state, except in the Bay Area near San Francisco which has a large homosexual population. The survey also showed support for the measure was not affected by TV ad campaigns supporting or opposing the proposal.

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      Teen theater on chastity and abstinence big hit in Southern California schools

         Another sign California is concerned about the runaway moral depravity is the Phantom Projects Troupe. In an effort to encourage sexual abstinence among teens, this theatrical company, comprised of Southern California teens, is staging a play to help youth 7th grade on up to better understand the sacredness of sex within marriage and the beauty of chastity outside of marriage. Educators have been impressed with this production, and are booking Catholic and private schools at a frantic pace. It's only a matter of time before the public schools get wind of it. continued inside.

    California Teenagers in True Life Situation Theater

        LOS ANGELES, FEB 29 (ZENIT).- The play "No Way to Treat a Lady," opens with Marie, a pregnant girl, speaking of love and loss. "He was older, and he was so good looking. He told me that if two people really love each other, they shouldn't be afraid to show it to each other." A voice answers her sternly, "Too bad some girls like you, Marie, are ignorant enough to think that the only way a guy thinks you can show him love is through sex." The play is being used by California schools to help youth to speak about the topic of love among themselves, and to hear things they did not know about the risks of premature, immature relationships.

        According to the Associated Press, the play is being staged by 15-year-olds of Southern California who want to encourage dialogue on the topic of sexual abstinence among youngsters of their age. Each actor of the Phantom Projects Troupe, as the group is called, takes a different position on the subject. After each show, the audience, composed primarily of 6th to 8th graders, can discuss their problems.

        "The center of all our shows is that everything comes down to self-control," Steve Cisneros, the group's producer-director, said. "It's natural to have feelings of wanting to have sex. It's natural to be intolerant to what others are and do. The actors are going through these same peer pressures themselves at their schools," he added.

        The play has been so effective, that several educational centers from New York to Arizona, have requested performances. In California, some 75 schools of Los Angeles, Orange, and Santa Barbara counties, have contracted the work for 4 days. An additional 15 schools, many belonging to Catholic parishes, have also requested performances of the play. The actors, who come for half a dozen different schools, rehearse on weekends and are given permission to miss class on the day of a performance. Some schools give them credit for this extra-curricular activity.

        Phantom Projects began when Cisneros was 17, and a student of Bruce Gevirtzman, an English teacher at La Mirada High School, about 20 miles from Los Angeles. Gervirtzman, a playwright since 1976, wrote "No Way to Treat a Lady" and other works now performed by the group. Teenagers "should be able to depend on the family, to always know that they are loved," Gervirtzman said. "But that's not the case anymore. There are a lot of substitutes for the love they're not getting: violence, sex, drugs."

        Tired of seeing so many misguided teenagers at his school, Cisneros believed he and his peers could reach out to urban middle-school students and teach them survival tools for their turbulent years. After a recent performance of the play, pupils raved about the life lessons it offered. "I learned some interesting and important facts about sex and the effects it could have on my life that I didn't know," a 14 year old boy said. "I've been pressured to have sex with someone more times than I can remember. Sometimes it's so hard to resist."

        One of the girls said the play "almost made me cry, just because it's such a scary world -- STDs, AIDS, pregnancy. My mind was set to not have sex until I'm married, but now it is written in stone," she said.

        Some parents have been unhappy with the frankness of the troupe's plays. A father, who identified himself as a former actor in a Christian drama company, praised the cast but also said: "they are not qualified to field students' questions on this sensitive subject."

        Cisneros defended the effort. "I wanted to combine my passion for theater and the power to teach. This is the way I could do it," he said. ZE00022901

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      Pope meets African king; Congo Archbishop still jailed; Pontifical Culture conference getting under way in central Africa

         Speaking of chastity, the King of Lesotho, Africa, along with his new wife met with the Holy Father yesterday morning. The king and queen, both Catholic, have broken from past tradition in his country by vowing themselves to each other in a monogamous union rather that the tradition of many wives as previous kings have done. Meanwhile, in Fukavu in the Congo, Archbishop Emmanuel Kataliko remains in prison and Catholics throughout the area are protesting by closing all churches. There was no Masses said on Sunday despite an appeal from the Pope for the return of the Archbishop to his see. Elsewhere in Africa, a meeting has been organized in Yaounde, Cameroon by the Pontifical Council for Culture bringing together bishops from central Africa in harmony with the UN's proclamation of the "Year for the Culture of Peace." continued inside.


        VATICAN CITY, FEB 29 (ZENIT).- This morning John Paul II received Letsie III, the King of Lesotho, and Queen Karabo Mohato Seeiso, and their entourage. The sovereign and his wife arrived in Rome last Sunday, after their wedding in this small southern African kingdom.

        The King's wedding became news when it was announced that he would only have one wife, thus breaking the monarchical tradition of the past in favor of polygamy. Letsie III, 35, renounced this tradition not only out of love for his bride, who is 23, but because he is a Catholic. Indeed, the wedding took place in the Catholic Church and was blessed by Archbishop Bernard Mohlalisi of the capital.

        Lesotho is a constitutional monarchy, with 2 million inhabitants. It became independent from Britain in 1966. For 20 years it was governed by the authoritarian regime of Prime Minister Leabua Jonathan, who was followed by a military regime. In 1993 Lesotho chose the democratic way.

        John Paul II visited Lesotho for 2 days in September of 1998, during his pastoral trip to Africa, when he also visited Zimbabwe, Botswana, Swaziland and Mozambique.

        Meanwhile in Bukuvu, for the third consecutive Sunday, churches in Bukavu remained closed, and no Masses were said. This was the measure taken by the Archdiocese in protest over the decision of the authorities of Goma to exile their Archbishop. In spite of John Paul II's appeal, Archbishop Emmanuel Kataliko remains unable to return to his residence. This past Sunday there were liturgies of the Word and penitential ceremonies in solidarity with the pastor. Archbishop Kataliko himself sent a message of consolation to the faithful of the Archdiocese, in which he requested prayers for peace.

        And in Central Africa the Pontifical Council for Culture has organized an international meeting in Yaounde, Cameroon, from March 2-4, dedicated to "The Christian Culture of Peace." An official statement by this Pontifical Council recalls that the initiative is taking place in the context of the United Nations proclamation of 2000 as the "Year for the Culture of Peace."

        The participants of the meeting will include African members of this Vatican organization and delegates of the Association of Episcopal Conferences of the Region of Central Africa (Cameroon, Chad, Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, and the Central African Republic) chosen among the presidents of the Episcopal Commissions on Education, Culture, Justice and Peace. It is expected that Cardinal Francis Arinze, president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue will attend, as well as Cardinal Christian Wiyghan Tumi, Archbishop of Douala, Cameroon, and Archbishop Anselm Titianma Sanon de Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso. ZE00022909, ZE00022910 and ZE00022912

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        MEXICO CITY (NE) Presently there is a worrying "manipulation of language" that "hides true lies, as part of a culture of death that invades us", recently warned the Archdiocese of Mexico in its publication "Nuevo Criterio". Words are emptied of their contents, manipulated, and finally, the concepts that they represent are replaced by others in an imperceptible, subtle, but completely real way, the magazine denounced it its last issue.

        "A culture of lie and simulation invades us… Not only new lives are annihilated, but those who, unprepared an ignorant of a process of manipulation of language, are seduced by false ideas and thus controlled. They think that they are free, but in reality, they are being manipulated from outside."

        The article also states that "in this country we have become experts in manipulating language to hide the truth", especially in attacks against life and family. There is no more inflation, but the peso only "slides"; there are no electoral frauds, but only "irregularities"; government workers don't steal, they only "deviate resources"; there is no birth control, only "demographic planning"; no more euthanasia, but "sweet dream"; and now there will be no abortion, but only "emergency contraception" or the "pill of the day after", which in reality is a chemical product that aborts new human beings recently conceived, the magazine denounced.

        For more headlines and articles, we suggest you go to the Catholic World News site at the CWN home page and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and the Dossiers, features and Daily Dispatches from ZENIT International News Agency CWN, NE & ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC, but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday - Friday.

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