The Catholic Advocate Vol. 67, No. 11 November 14, 2018

www.rcan.org Vol. 67 No. 11 November 14, 2018 The community newspaper of the Archdiocese of Newark Angel Tree brings hope to children with parents in prison Second prayer service for clergy abuse victims to be held Nov. 30 A s we enter the holiday season, this can be a difficult time for many people—in particular, for children living with one or both par- ents in prison. According to the Na- tional Resource Center on Children and Families of the Incarcerated at Rutgers University-Camden, more than 2.7 million children in the U.S. have an incarcerated parent. That’s 1 in 28 American children. Research shows that parental incarceration in- creases the risk of children living in poverty or experiencing household instability. “The growing number of chil- dren with an incarcerated parent rep- resents one of the most significant collateral consequences of the record prison population in the U.S.,” stated The Sentencing Project, a research and advocacy center. Angel Tree is a program of Prison Fellowship that helps to ease some of the difficulty. It connects parents in prison with their children Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., will lead a prayer service under the theme of “Longing for Life …We Wait in Darkness” on Friday, Nov. 30, beginning at 7:30 p.m. in the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark. This is the second prayer service in recognition and hope for the victims of clergy abuse, for their families, for the ac- cused and for the Church. On Sept. 14, Cardinal Tobin through the delivery of Christmas gifts. According to the program’s website, Angel Tree is “an opportu- nity to share God’s love by helping to meet the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the families of prisoners.” Many churches make an annual commitment to the program for the holiday season. Susan Rich, coordi- nator of the New Jersey chapter of the Friends of Delille, has worked with the charity for the past three years. AGlen Ridge resident, Rich specifically asked Angel Tree to work with children and families in Essex County. Sometime in the fall, the pro- gram’s coordinators receive the name, caregiver and contact infor- mation of children who were signed up by their parent in prison. Angel Tree tags are completed with the name of these children, along with gift suggestions, and are displayed in churches or given to individual groups that would like to participate. The children receive a gift with a special note from their parent. It is not always easy for the children led about 2,000 clergy, consecrated Christians and laity is a prayer ser- vice titled “Behold the Wood of the Cross” for abuse survivors. Some 2,500 people viewed the service on Facebook Live and the Archdiocese of Newark website. Prior to “Longing for Life,” Car- dinal Tobin participated in a special seven days of prayer and fasting, along with the other bishops of the United States, during the week of By Melissa McNally Editor AROUND THE ARCHDIOCESE Pages 5 FALL RETREATS & SHRINES Pages 16-18 APPOINTMENTS Page 15 EDUCATION OUTREACH Page 20 CLASSIFIEDS Page 22 Continued on page 7 Submitted photo From left to right: Michele Perrella, Susan Rich, Mariela Genoa and her mother, Yamilka Genoa. Nov. 5-11. “The intentions for this period of prayer and sacrifice are three-fold,” the cardinal wrote in a letter to parishioners. “For the heal- ing and support of all victims of cler- gy sexual abuse; for the conversion and just punishment of the perpetra- tors and concealers of sexual abuse; and for the strength of the bishops to be holy shepherds in protecting and leading our sheep from all harm.” The days of intensified prayer and fasting were in preparation for the U.S. Conference of Catho- lic Bishops’ Fall General Assem- bly held in Baltimore Nov. 12-14. During the assembly, bishops discussed and voted on a series of concrete measures to respond to the abuse crisis. to see their parent in prison during Christmastime, Rich noted. Many of the inmates are being held out of the state, far away from home. Rich and members of Friends of Delille, which assists in the promo- tion of Henriette Delille’s canoniza- tion, deliver these gifts themselves in the days leading up to Christmas. “A bus company graciously donates a yellow school bus to us for three hours,” Rich explained. “Some of us wear Santa hats, we drink hot choc- olate on the bus and sing Christmas carols while we deliver the gifts. We try to make it fun.” Rich partners with other or- ganizations in the Archdiocese of Newark, including the Women’s (For Cardinal Tobin’s letter regarding recent articles in The Philadelphia Inquirer and Boston Globe about clergy sexual abuse, turn to page 2.)

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