April 1, 2011

What was in the news on March 31, 1961? New high schools in Indianapolis and more trouble with federal school funding

By Brandon A. Evans

50 Year LogoThis week, we continue to examine what was going on in the Church and the world 50 years ago as seen through the pages of The Criterion, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary.

Here are some of the items found in the March 31, 1961, issue of The Criterion:

  • Cornerstone rite set Sunday for Chatard High
    • “Archbishop [Paul C.] Schulte will bless the cornerstone of Chatard High School, the first of three archdiocesan secondary schools to be erected in Marion County as a result of a $5 million fund campaign, on Easter Sunday at 4 p.m. … Four-year capacity of Chatard, which will graduate its first class in 1965, will be 700 students. An addition will be added to the building following the completion of two other secondary schools in Marion County, providing maximum facilities for nearly 1,300 students. Included in the basic physical plant at Chatard will be 16 classrooms, commercial room, three science laboratories, home economics laboratory, library, audio-visual room, shop, offices, faculty lounges and conference rooms. The gymnasium-auditorium will accommodate 2,100 in bleachers.”
  • An Easter Prayer by John Henry Cardinal Newman
  • School building loans illegal, Congress told
    • “WASHINGTON—The uphill climb facing backers of federal aid to private education looked steeper this week because of the administration’s controversial legal stand. In a 63-page memorandum to Congress, the Department of Health, Education and Welfare limited constitutional aid to those funds lent to primary and secondary Church schools ‘for special purposes not closely related to religious education.’ Even aid conceived this narrowly does not guarantee constitutionality, said the memorandum. It conceded only that it is ‘likely’ that ‘constitutional objections may be avoided’ by such aid.”
  • Vatican daily asks equal treatment for all schools
  • Clergy join hands against prejudice
  • New efforts, new conflicts: Rocky road to unity foreseen during ’60s
  • Only 1 priest has served as chaplain in Congress
  • More priests are required for work among the deaf
  • A convert may be first native saint
    • “LEGHORN, Italy—This seaport city north of Rome holds the memories of the conversion of Mother Elizabeth Seton, who may one day be the first native citizen of the United States to be canonized a saint. Mother Seton, who was declared venerable by Pope John XXIII on December 18, 1959, was 32 years old when she entered the Church. Her life and works after her conversion made her one of the most important figures in the history of Catholicism in the United States. However, it is not generally known that the initial steps in her conversion were taken on Italian soil. Mother Seton’s youth spanned that transitional period from colonial America to the foundation of the new nation of the United States. The year that she was born, 1774, was the year of the first Continental Congress. The year that she was married to William Magee Seton, 1793, was the year that George Washington was elected to his second term as President of the United States.”
  • The Vatican Library: Oldest collection of learning serves the scholars of the world
  • Hails Dead Sea Scrolls as ‘greatest discovery’
  • Put human rights before technology, prelate advises
  • Crushing taxes levied against Polish Church
  • Report priest executed as ‘anti-Castro rebel’

(Read all of these stories from our March 31, 1961, issue by logging on to our special archives.)

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